Humanity and Diety of Christ, Part 1

SAINTS: I JUST WANT TO ASK YOU A COUPLE OF QUESTIONS TO SORT OF PROVOKE YOUR THINKING, BEFORE WE ACTUALLY GO INTO THIS VERY IMPORTANT SUBJECT WE HAVE CHOSEN TO DEAL WITH. CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE GODHEAD? DO YOU KNOW WHY JESUS HAD TO BE PERFECT MAN, IN ORDER TO FULFILL HIS PURPOSE UPON EARTH? DO YOU BELIEVE HE WAS PERFECT IN EVERY WAY? WHAT MADE HIM A PERFECT MAN, AND WHAT MADE HIM GOD INCARNATE? WE INTEND TO ANSWER EVERY ONE OF THESE QUESTIONS, AND MANY, MANY MORE, GOING ALL THE WAY FROM THE FIRST CHAPTER OF GENESIS, TO THE LAST CHAPTER OF THE BOOK OF REVELATION, JUST ALLOWING THE HOLY GHOST TO MAKE THE SUBJECT INTERESTING AND BENEFICIAL TO US.


Text 1, Timothy 3:16


Many have tried in vain to explain the humanity and the deity of Jesus Christ, simply because they themselves did not have a true revelation of the Godhead. You just simply cannot explain something that you do not understand. Then there are those who do have a true revelation of the Godhead, but are unable to explain it in a way that can be easily understood. Therefore by the help of the Lord we are going into the scriptures and endeavor to examine thoroughly, both the divine, as well as the human side of Christ. The early church in the book of Acts had a complete understanding of who Jesus Christ (picture of city with man speaking to group of people that a virgin shall conceive and call him Immanuel) was, and how He came to be as He was, but it has been the devil’s chief purpose to try to destroy every genuine revelation that those first age Christians held; therefore it is no wonder that there is so much controversy and confusion about whether God is one or three, and whether Jesus Christ was completely divine or not, in the church would today. The great theologians of our day have taken the Bible apart verse by verse, chapter by chapter, and even word by word, and they still do not know. Do you know why they do not know? Simply because they are trying to learn through their great educated minds, something that can only be revealed by the Spirit of God, to those who are able to receive revelation in their Spirit. Oh yes, It comes through the mind, but it is not your intellect that actually retains a true revelation, for if it stops in your mind, you are likely to trade it for something that sounds better when Satan sends one of his ambassadors to fill your mind with perversion.


You will hear people say, was Jesus really a flesh and blood man that could be tempted by the devil? If He was, then how could He be divine? Or you might hear something like this, If Jesus Christ was truly God, then it was impossible for Him to have been tempted of Satan. Brothers and Sisters: The bible lays it all out in such a way that it is possible to understand every bit of it. But you must remember this, Gentiles have never had the opportunity to know Him after the flesh, as those first age Jews did. We only know him by the Spirit, and that is the reason why education cannot produce a genuine revelation from the word of God.


TREASURES OF WISDOM AND KNOWLEDGE


We are going to use 1st Timothy 3:16 as our text for this message, but before reading it, I want to read two verses from Paul’s letter to the Colossian believers concerning his desire for all those who had never had the opportunity to sit before him personally. He desired (Col. 2:2-3) “That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto ALL riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ; IN WHOM are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” In other words, All the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hid to those who never receive a revelation of the Godhead. This is the key that unlocks God’s storehouse of spiritual treasures. This is the key to all spiritual wisdom and knowledge, so let us hear what Paul wrote to Timothy about it. (3:16) “And without controversy great is the mystery of Godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” If this was the only scripture in the Bible that we could look at on this subject, we sure wouldn’t have much to go on, but on the other hand, this one verse is all we need in order to learn that the apostle Paul’s mind was completely settled on this great mystery that has baffled mankind for two thousand years. In other words, just to use plain language, here is what Paul was saying, Without any doubt whatsoever, this truly is a great mystery, how God was manifest in human flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles (Paul was the one that did that.) Believed on in the world, received up into glory. It is a great mystery to an unrevealed mind, yet God’s true children can understand it completely. Our minds can be completely settled on the subject just like Paul’s was.


ENMITY BETWEEN TWO SEED


Now we are using this one particular verse 1st Tim. 3:16, just as a foundational text, as we begin to explore this great mystery, through the pages of God’s holy word. Therefore let us go to Genesis 3:15, where we will begin our study on the humanity side of Jesus the Christ. What we want to find out, is whether there was anything about Him that could be literally looked upon as totally human. Naturally we are not speaking of sinful qualities, for He had no sinful nature at all. But did He have the ability to think, speak, feel, see and hear like any other normal man? Could he talk about everyday subjects like you and I, or was His speech confined to high and holy matters?


The truth of the matter is, when you really began to see Him as He was when He walked among men, there was nothing extraordinary about His appearance. The average Jew could never see Him to be any different in appearance than anyone else. Only those that had something to do with His introduction, saw Him to be different, but that was through the Spirit. In Genesis 3:15, we find God speaking to the serpent, after he had defiled Eve, saying, “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed: (Jesus the Christ)it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel.” First, let us establish something else. Just exactly what was this that came walking into the garden and confronted the serpent, Eve and Adam? Was it a man? No, it was that Spirit presence of the great, eternal, self existent God, that object of worship that we hold in our hearts and minds to be the creator of the whole universe. He was not born; He always was. He cannot die; He will always be. There is absolutely no kind of life that can exist outside of God. He is the Creator of all life. When you go out and dig fishing worms, God is the life giver to those worms. He is the source of all intelligence, all life, and all activity. Evolution is a dead man’s theory. They probe the crust of the earth looking for fossils to prove their theory, and without revelation, even what they find does not help them, for only the revelated mind knows why those fossils are there. Only a revelated mind can harmonize six thousand years of the history of mankind with fossils that are proved to be millions of years old. Only a Creator could set this universe with all of its many bodies, so precise that even manmade computers can tell where Mars will be in relationship with the earth, a million years from now. Yes, the worlds were framed by the word of God. What we see round about us is His thoughts put into action. He counseled with Himself before He ever began to create; therefore in the great mind of God everything is seen as a finished product. It is the same way when a man builds a house, if he did not have a picture in his mind of, what that house was going to look like, he would be one mixed up fellow. Can you imagine a fellow cutting boards and nailing them together all day long, saying in his mind, I wonder what this thing is going to look like? What kind of builder would he be, if in his mind he could not see the building as a finished product? Let us endeavor to see God exactly like that, in relation to all of His efforts bestowed upon we humans. If we were foreknown of Him, He sees us as we will be, not as we are today. But, Saints: Please do not visualize this great God as a person, for He is Spirit, He is sovereign, and He is omnipresent.


SYMBOLIC LANGUAGE


Now let us get back to Genesis 3:15, where God cursed the serpent, and spoke of a seed of the woman that would bruise his head, and so forth. Alright, so the woman would have a seed, and the serpent would have a seed; we surely have that much established right here. What God was saying, was that, somewhere in the ages to come, there would be a seed of woman that would come upon the scene, and His heel would bruise the serpents head, and the serpents head would bruise his heel. Naturally we understand that this is symbolic language, for when Jesus came upon the scene, there was never a time when this could have been literally applied. Yet we do know also, that as man has existed in this world, many times, the only weapon he had, to use against the crawling reptiles, was his heel. This natural identity helps us to make the proper spiritual application to this symbolic language. The serpent was not a reptile at the time God spoke those words to him, but that is when God stripped him of his arms and legs, so to speak, and sent him crawling off among the other reptiles, and today, man does not know which of the reptiles are descendants of the old cursed serpent. Nevertheless, in spiritual terms it was the devil that inspired the serpent to seduce Eve, that the promised seed was to strike a bruising blow to. Jesus the Christ was that seed, and it was His authority over spiritual forces that would do something to Satan. He had God invested authority to do what no sinful natured man could do. He was completely human, identified with all other mankind in every way except inherited attributes. Every other human born of woman, had sinful attributes, but here was a man, born of woman, that had no inherited sin. Why? Simply because there was none of mans genes in Him. That life cell Mary carried for nine months to birth, was a created cell, created in her without her going through the natural process of conception by a relationship with a man. We will say more about this later on in the message, but right now, let us go to the book of Isaiah for the next important prophecies concerning this seed of woman that was to be born.

 

A VIRGIN HAD A BABY


In Isaiah 7:14, we find these words spoken by a prophet that was a Jew, but the Spirit from which this prophecy came forth was not his spirit; it was the Spirit of Jehovah God, Elohim, the self existing, omnipresent Spirit. “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” What was the sign given? Was it the fact that a young woman named Mary had a baby? No, that wasn’t the sign, for most babies are born of young women. The sign was that a particular young woman who was still a virgin, had a baby. That is where your scientists and all other carnal minds go astray; they will not admit that Jesus was born of a virgin girl, because according to scientific law, that would have been an impossibility. Naturally all such people in Mary’s day, looked at her very suspiciously, and whether they expressed it or not, they were thinking to themselves, there is something fishy about all this. But the sign was not for them, it was for those who believed in God; therefore they exert effort and influence to get the Bible rewritten, leaving out all the supernatural manifestations, and in the case of the birth of Jesus, they use terminology eliminating the word virgin, and just say, a young woman. But you know, and I know that the mere fact that a young woman has a son is not a sign to anyone. On the other hand, those that believed recognized the sign, and accepted the fact that Immanuel meant, God with us. We will see a little later, as we go into Matthew, that He was to be named Jesus, not Immanuel, or Emmanuel, as it is spelled in the New Testament. Actually the name Jesus has a compound meaning that speaks of the fact that God is in Him, to save His people. Of course there have been many little boy babies named Jesus, down through the ages, but they were named by the will of man, and not by a command from God. Isaiah was the first man that began to speak of the kind of woman that would bring forth this Son, who would be a full expression of perfect humanity, and at the same time, carry a name that was chosen by the Almighty God to express something else, the fact that God was in Him for the purpose of redeeming His lost people. This man Jesus, who was the Christ, the Jews Messiah, had a threefold work to do in revealing the Father’s name, His word, and His works, all of which we will call attention to as we proceed through the scriptures. “I CAME IN MY FATHER’S NAME” “O FATHER, I HAVE MANIFESTED THY NAME” “I HAVE GIVEN UNTO THEM THE WORDS WHICH THOU GAVEST ME.” NEITHER HATH THIS MAN SINNED, NOR HIS PARENTS: BUT THAT THE WORKS OF GOD SHOULD BE MADE MANIFEST IN HIM.” “IF I DO NOT THE WORKS OF MY FATHER, BELIEVE ME NOT.” These are just a few of the statements we will call attention to when we get over into the New Testament, but for our next reading, let us turn to Isaiah 9:6-7, where we will find that prophet of God speaking of this particular son that is to be born of a young virgin. One thing we cannot help but notice, is how Isaiah always spoke in a positive way. There was never any suppositional thought, or meaning. There was no room left for anything to go wrong that would mar, or change the picture. He spoke as though he was already looking at the finished product. You can read chapter 7, chapter 9, 53, and 61, and it is always the same.


DEITY QUALITIES IN THE NAME JESUS


Notice now, in chapter 9, verse 6, how Isaiah brings out the compound meanings of the name Jesus, for he was never called by any of these terms that Isaiah mentioned here. No one ever met him on the street, and said to him, “Hello Wonderful,” neither “Hello Counselor,” nor “Hello Prince of Peace” these were all encompassed in the one name of Jesus, so let us read it. “For unto us a child is born, unto a son is given: (These words are coming from Isaiah’s lips, but they are not his words; he is speaking a prophecy, as the voice of God; therefore we want to pay attention to how God spoke, using the word us, which shows that He was speaking on behalf of the people. But not everyone, only those who were looking for a Savior. He identifies with them, and says, Unto US a son is given:) and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and His name shall be called, WONDERFUL, COUNSELOR, THE MIGHTY GOD, THE EVERLASTING FATHER, THE PRINCE OF PEACE.” One thing we definitely want to take note of is how this verse stresses the male side, a son, his, Father, and Prince. (I say that because of all this feminist movement in the world today. ) it was to be a man child, and the government was to be upon His shoulder, and the actual name that would be given to Him would encompass Father and Prince. This is where Emmanuel is broken down into the many characteristics that it holds. Another thing that you will notice, is that these are the characteristics of Elohim, as He would officiate in a governmental capacity. Now let me ask you this. When would Jesus be looked upon as Wonderful? I am sure it will be fully applicable when He sits upon His throne as King; invested with this great ancient authority. The whole world is going to behold the King, that there has never been one like, before. If the world had such a king today, we would not have all the bloodshed and chaos that is constantly in the news, for we read in the Bible, that the earth will be filled with the knowledge and glory of the Lord. Brother, I want you to know that when this old world is seen existing in an atmosphere of perfect peace, perfect health, and even the animal kingdom lying down in perfect peace, man will say, This is wonderful, and they will know why it is so wonderful. This Wonderful, Counselor, Prince of Peace, and King of kings is in control. A counselor is what the presidents, rulers, and political leaders of our day need, but they certainly do not want this kind of counselor, for all of His decisions will be based upon divine laws. This apostate society does not want divine law to govern fallen mankind in his mortality. They would rather wallow in filth and degradation.


TRENDS OF OUR DAY


A brother in the church handed me a newspaper clipping this morning written by some educated character, and he literally ridiculed religion. You get the idea from reading this article, that he more or less looks upon religion as a scourge to humanity. Of course we all know that many of the religions of the world are just that, but we also know that those who hold truth from God’s word, precious to their soul, are a blessing, and a benefit to any society, for they are the ones that hold back the Sodom and Gomorrah conditions that natural minded humanity tends to drift toward. Forty or fifty years ago, when truth and holiness was still reverenced by a greater majority, only a small percentage of the law enforcement people needed in this day and hour kept immortality and lawlessness within certain bounds, but in this hour of time there are no boundaries; humanity is running wild. The gospel has been diluted until it no longer has any bearing on what the world wants to do. Apostate religion is a promoter of much of the evil in the world today. Those who fight so hard for freedom to do as they choose, are mostly those who choose to do the devil’s business, rather than God’s business. The devil, by perverting their minds, will see to it. You just simply cannot put babies and rattlesnakes into the same crib and expect perfect harmony, without the babies being bit. You cannot educate rattlesnakes, and this world is full of two legged rattlesnakes, so to speak, and some of them have degrees a mile long. They are enemies of the very Creator that gives them the right to live. They are just like what we read in Genesis, chapter 6, great men of renown. Dean So and So, and Professor This and That, but in the eyes of God they are no more than worms. Saints: I have to talk like this, for this is my way of painting a picture before you. God must be supreme, reverenced and respected in the minds of some people that fear “Him”.


THE HEAVENLY PRINCE OF PEACE


Now this child that was to be born would be called, The mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. What? That child is going to be looked upon and called all of that? He certainly is. Through the history of time the sons of ruling kings have always been called princes, and most usually the king’s eldest son would be his ambassador of peace, sent to other kingdoms in an effort to establish peace. Do you catch my point? They were in a role as a prince of peace. That is exactly what Jesus Christ will be when He does come to establish that divine kingdom upon earth, or maybe I should say, in the world. He is the Prince of that great eternal King which is a Spirit, and He will be the administrator of divine law and authority in the earth. In one way or another, He will fulfill a role that will be in perfect harmony with all that has been prophesied of Him by God’s holy inspired prophets. Brothers and sisters, we are taking our time, not trying to rush through this message, and I realize I may say some things that could create a question in your mind. Don’t wrestle with it, because as we take this subject right on through the scriptures, you will see everything drop right into place. Just bear with me, and please do not allow the devil to set on your shoulder, because we are going to look at some scriptures the Trinitarians will not use, and some others, that the oneness will not use. They will not use them, because they do not know how to explain them, but we will use them, and allow the Holy Ghost to explain them. All of these scriptures were spoken by the Spirit of God, and through the years they have been perverted by the spirit of Satan, and the truth of them hidden in a lot of confusion in this Gentile world, but the same Spirit that inspired them in the first place will reveal them again in God’s true people. So let us read verse 7, of Isaiah, chapter 9. “Of the increase of His government and peace, there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon His Kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgement and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.” If you study the gospel of Matthew, you will see how this verse pertaining to the throne of David is applied. It seems that each of the gospel writers had a certain main point that they emphasized as they related what they saw and heard. Matthew dwelled more upon the Kingdom of Jesus Christ, He who would sit upon the throne of David, His father according to natural genealogy. Mark dwelled more upon the suffering servant aspect of His life and ministry upon earth, and Luke seemed to emphasize the son of man, speaking more of His humanity. But then when you come to John, you find him placing more emphasize on the deity side, proving that, He truly was the Son of God, and that God who is Spirit, dwelled in Him. You find this not only in the gospel of St. John, but also in the little Epistles of John also.


GOD IS FOREVER THE SAME


The Lord of hosts as spoken in Isaiah 9:7, is not referring to the man Jesus, but rather to the omnipresent Spirit that always stood by the Israelites. It is He, that makes sure every word of prophecy is fulfilled. It is these verses that continue to speak of God as a Spirit, that the oneness people try to avoid, since they do not know how to properly assimilate the oneness of the Godhead with scriptures that actually sound to the unrevelated mind, like God is more than one. When they read Col. 2:9, where Paul said, “For in Him (Jesus Christ) dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily” they seem to feel that all of God was poured into that little body of Jesus, and that He (Jesus) is all there is. If that were so, then God would have ceased to be omnipresent when Jesus walked upon earth among men. It does not take much of a revelation to know that such an idea is completely out of harmony with all the rest of God’s word. For whatever God ever was, He still is, and He will always be, for He does not change; the scriptures tell us so. Well that remains to be the great mystery of the Godhead tot hose who do not know Him by a personal revelation. God ordained it to be like that, for He did not intend for natural man to learn all about Him. On the other hand, it is God’s will for every genuine believer to see and understand His eternal existence, and His many manifestations in this great plan of redemption. John certainly was not afraid to mention the Father and the Son. He was not afraid someone would accuse him of thinking that God is three persons. Neither is any other revelated believer. If you did not know better, there are times when you might think the apostle Paul was Trinity, as you read certain epistles he wrote. But then you have to realize that he also wrote the Colossian epistle which speaks of the oneness of God, and the fulness of the Godhead that was in Christ Jesus. He did not have to worry about being misunderstood, for He was writing to believers that understood His terminology. You just have to realize that these men did not just sit down with the idea of writing their particular portion of what we call, “The Bible”. Men in other ages have taken their letters and bound them all together into one book, and we have it as the word of God, the Bible, but when they wrote, they did not know they were writing the Bible. Even the gospel of Luke was a letter written to a believer by the name of Theophilus, and Luke’s purpose was that he might get the full recorded account first hand, from one who had perfect understanding of all that was commonly believed among the disciples who walked with Christ for 3 and 1 half years.

 

BOTH OF ONE SPIRIT


Let us go back in our Bibles to the 2nd chapter of Psalms, where we will pick up some prophetic words uttered by a little shepherd boy named David, the same David that later became king of Israel. No doubt he would just sit down and lean back against a rock and meditate upon the goodness of the Lord God while his sheep were grazing. Words like we find here in chapter 2, do not necessarily come to a person all at once. You might, in your daily meditations, receive a few words of a song each day, and then one day the Spirit of the Lord might move upon you to put them all together. I believe that is how it was with David. This was the Spirit of the Lord speaking, and it was in the form of a song, ( a Psalm.) Notice verse 7, “I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.” Was that the Lord speaking to David, “Thou art my son?” No. It was a prophecy concerning Jesus the Christ, who would be born, brought forth from the womb of woman just like any other little baby. The big difference would be in the process of conception, for as we have already stated, That which she conceived was by a creative act of Jehovah God, and it was implanted in a virgin womb that had never known a man in that way. She was engaged to a man called Joseph, but she was still a virgin. “This day have I begotten thee.” Paul even mentioned this verse of the Psalms in his letter to the Hebrews, but there are a lot of Oneness preachers who would not dare mention it, lest they detract from the deity picture they are trying to paint of Christ Jesus. I suppose we have all been guilty at times, of just avoiding scriptures that we feel might cause the person, or persons we are speaking to at the time, to fail to see the picture we are trying to paint before them, of the deity of Christ. We have just sort of excluded the flesh at times, but we need not do that, for all that are foreknown of God will eventually get the true picture, and the others cannot possibly get it, no matter how we present it to them. Truth is truth regardless of how it is understood, and the truth about the flesh of Jesus the Christ, is that every molecule of it was from the earth, just like yours and mine. It was not His flesh that was God. It was the Spirit of Elohim that indwelt Him, that made him God. Every attribute of the great God of all creation was in the little man called Jesus the Christ, and that is the reason Paul could say, in Colossians 1:19, “For it pleased the Father that in Him ( Jesus) should all fullness dwell.” When we are born again we receive a certain measure of the Spirit that indwelt Jesus, but none of us will ever receive the measure that He possessed, at least not in this life. The Bible says that He was tempted in every way that we are tempted, yet He remained completely sinless through it all. You say, Could He have sinned if He had wanted to. Yes. He could have done anything that anyone else could do as pertaining to the human side of Him, but the beautiful thing about it is, He only wanted to do what would please the Father. Therefore he did everything He wanted to do. Jesus, who was the Christ, was the fulness of God manifested for the purpose of redemption, we understand that, but let me say this, The true church is to be the fulness of Christ, to represent Him in the gospel age, the Kingdom of Heaven. (Matthew chapter 13) As we said earlier, No Gentiles has had the opportunity to know Christ after the flesh, but through the true church, others are led to know Him by the Spirit that is in them, which is the very Spirit of Christ, which is the Spirit of the living God. Let me see if I can put this into words that will convey to you, exactly what I see. Jesus had a human spirit from the very day that the breath of natural life entered into Him, but, that spirit was not deity; it was just sinless. But the day John baptized Him in the Jordan, and the Spirit of the Father descended to Him, and was described as in the form of a dove, and the two were joined together, they became one Spirit. He did not have His human spirit over in one corner, and the Spirit of the Father in another; they were joined together as one Spirit, yet He could speak either as deity, or as human, as is detected throughout the gospels. One time He would say, I will pray the Father, and He will give it to you. Then another time He would say, Whatsoever ye ask in my name, I will do it. Therefore when we receive the Holy Ghost we not only receive a measure of the Spirit of the Father, for the Holy Ghost is that Spirit of Christ. There are many verses that one could look at, such as 1 Cor. 3:16, 6:17,19, Acts 2:17, 2 Cor. 13:5, and many others, but there is one verse that says it all, and that is Romans 8:9, Listen. “ But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the SPIRIT OF GOD dwell in you. Now if any man have not the SPIRIT OF CHRIST, he is none of His.” Then you could read verses 10, 11, and 14, if you need more. But tell me this, When a person receives the Holy Ghost, do they receive two Spirits, one of the Father, and another of the Son? Absolutely not, for the Father and the Son are of one Spirit. That is why Jesus could us terminology like He did, in John 17:21, and 23. He prayed for all that would ever believe unto salvation, “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us.” Now this is a verse that the Trinitarians like to use, for to them it sounds like the word US, applies to two persons. They have never been able to understand how Jesus could pray to the Father, unless the Father was another person. Neither can they understand how Jesus could be called God, nor how the fullness of the Godhead could be in Him and He would still pray to one He called, the Father. In other words, If He were God, then why would He pray to God? These are all questions of an unrevelated natural mind. But we will not boast because we understand these things, for it is only by the mercy and grace of God, that we are not still among them, thinking those same thoughts, and arguing about simple doctrines of the scriptures.

WHO IS THE FATHER OF JESUS


Go with me now into the gospel of St. Matthew, as we approach the time when this promised Son is soon to be manifested. Chapter 1, verse 18, is where I want to read from first, because this is the first mention of the name Jesus Christ, in the New Testament. But technically, what we will read from Luke’s gospel, where the angel of the Lord appeared to Mary, took place a few months before this event here in Matthew. The angel did not appear to Joseph until after it became obvious that Mary his espoused wife, was with child, so let us read. “Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as His mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.” So the events of Luke, Chapter 1, have already taken place, for that is where it is recorded, how Gabriel appeared to Mary, and told her what was going to transpire in her life, because she had found favor with God. Mary submitted herself to the will and purpose of God at that time, and it was not until she was found with child of the Holy Ghost, that the angel came to inform Joseph of what was taking place. This is another verse the Trinitarians like to use, for they will say. See there, there is more than one person in the Godhead, and they never stop to realize what a complex situation they come up with when they make the Holy Ghost a person, and especially a person separate and distinct from God the Father, which they also refer to as a person. I am sure most of you see it already. If the Holy Ghost is a person, and God the Father is another person, then Jesus had two daddies, if you will pardon my expression. They will readily confess that Jesus is the Son of God, the creator of all life, yet they never stop to realize that if He truly is, then God the Father, and God the Holy Ghost would have to be one and the self same Spirit, and not two separate persons. Another thing you need to remember is that the term Holy Ghost was never used until after the advent of Christ. Some people tend to think of the gospels as though they were diaries, written day by day as events occurred. That is not the case at all, for all except the gospel of Matthew were written many years after the crucifixion, and it is commonly believed that Matthew was written somewhere around A.D.37. The exact year of writing is inmaterial to the point I want to establish, and that is this, All these gospel writers picked up the pen years later, and recorded what they knew of the life and ministry of Jesus Christ upon earth, lest they all die without leaving a record of what actually took place. Therefore there are terms of speech used even in the very beginning of the gospel records, that were not even in use when the actual event being recorded occurred. That is always true in any record being written years after an event occurred. On the other hand, a diary is written day by day as events occur, and the terminology will always be that which is common in that particular day. I hope this little explanation will help some of you to better understand why some things are written as they are, and that you simply cannot read the scriptures straight through with the idea that you are following events as they occurred in a chronological order.


JESUS– A COMPOUND NAME


Now we will read verse 19. “Then Joseph her husband, (her husband to be, after finding that Mary was with child.) being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privately. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife; for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” Before reading verse 21, let me just say few more words about the Godhead question. God, that is referred to as Father, is truly the Father of all creation. He is the very source of everything that exists. In Him, all life lives and moves, and has its being. He is Father because everything that has life originated with Him. He was the Creator of it. But after creation was finished, there was no more need for Him to continue as Creator, so He then began to work in His creation, but He remained to be that same Spirit being. Let us use a natural illustration to show His threefold function as Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Just suppose you owned a financial institution, and you were president, secretary, and treasurer. You would have three separate functions, fulfilling the duties of three offices, but that would not require you to be three separate persons. There would be times when you would be referred to as the president, others, the secretary, and at other times, the treasurer, but none of those titles would be your name. Whatever you name might be, you would still be that, no matter what title you were called by. With God, each title is what He is, as He functions in that capacity. It just so happens that Jesus is that redemption name of the one great God who is Spirit; therefore when it came the season for Him to robe Himself in human flesh, to function as Redeemer, Savior, the sacrifice for man’s sin debt, that flesh and blood male child was given that compound name JESUS. It is spelled the same way as all the other Jesus’ in the world, but none of the others carry a compound meaning, they are just plain Jesus. We can draw another example from the man Jesus who was the Christ. He was and is called Savior, Redeemer, Lamb of God, a Healer, the word of God, and many other things, but He is still Jesus, one person. So as the angel is speaking to Joseph to enlighten him, and to encourage his heart, he is told that Mary has conceived seed of the Holy Ghost, (or by the Spirit which is God the creator.) “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call His name JESUS: for He shall save His people from their sins.” Now some will say, What happened to the Emmanuel that Isaiah prophesied about? What about the Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, the Everlasting Father and the Prince of Peace? That is exactly what I want you to see. All of that incorporated in the one name Jesus. All of these speak of attributes, but the name of the one that carries all those attributes of the Father, is Jesus. “And He shall save His people.” Who is doing the saving? The very Father who created them. When His people became lost, this was His way of coming down to their level, in order to speak to them face to face, walk with them and personally bestow His attributes upon them.


A PERFECT, SINLESS MAN


Let us just go to the first little epistle of John, and read what he said about this very thing. “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life: For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us. (Listen to this next verse.) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, (Why?) That ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son of Jesus Christ.,” Was John referring to two persons there? Don’t you ever allow yourself to think a thing like that. John knew perfectly well that the Father was in the Son, and that to fellowship the Son was to fellowship the Father also. He said, We have handled Him, and our eyes have looked upon Him., and he knew that he was speaking of the very God of all creation, when he made that statement. So let us just go back to the first chapter of Matthew where we will see how John could make such a statement. As Matthew writes his account of Gabriel appearing to Joseph, just as soon as he finishes the sentence, “Thou shalt call His name JESUS: for He shall save His people,” he goes right ahead and says, (verse 22) “Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, (he goes right back to Isaiah 7:14) Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: and knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he (Joseph) called His name JESUS.” Joseph know exactly what to name that baby. He did not have to do as my wife and I have done; What will we name this one? Neither did he have to guess, as to whether it would be a boy or a girl; for that was already settled also. “She shall bring forth a SON, and thou shalt call His name JESUS.” That was all he needed to hear, for there is no record that he ever questioned anything that the angel spoke to him. Verse 24, lets us see that he was a man of action also, for as soon as he awakened from sleep, he did exactly what the angel had told him to do. Remember though, the angel had already spoken to Mary long before that, and explained the whole thing to her, and even told her about Elizabeth her cousin being with child in her old age, and that she was already in her sixth month. It is from Luke’s writing that we get the full impact of the human side of Christ, and it is important that every one of us get this fact of His humanity settled in our minds, and treat the human side as just exactly that. If you cannot see Jesus as completely human in every way, you can never have a true revelation of the Godhead. By that I mean, that there was no area of humanity that he came up short in. He had the five senses, sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch, just like the rest of us, and he got his clothes dirty playing, just like every other little boy. The fact that he had a perfect mind without any of the hindrances of man’s fallen nature did not make him any less human, it just kept him out of undesirable circumstances that other humans get caught up in, because his mind was always occupied with proper thoughts. We do not have much to look at along that line, but we do have enough to enable us to speak intelligently about it, for even at the age of 12 years, (you have all read what he was doing) he was sitting with a bunch of scholars discussing things that other little boys his age would never even think about, much less know anything about. Then we learn that he went with Joseph and Mary, and was completely subject to them. In other words, he was a perfectly obedient child. You say, Well, there wasn’t anything normal about that, for all children are disobedient at times. You mean, every other child, every other child in the world has an inherited nature to sin, but since Jesus was born from a created embryo, he did not have anything in him that would automatically cause him to disobey like other children, yet he could have, for that part of Him was not God. As a matter of fact, if man had never fallen from his original creation, every child born into the world would have had a perfect mind, and a sinless nature just like Jesus did. That is how Adam was, before he disobeyed God, and God set a law in effect, that everything must bring forth of its own kind. Hereditary traits are transmitted through the genes of both father and mother to all their offspring, and from generation to generation. The potential for anything that any of our ancestors ever did lies within each of us through our genealogical makeup. That is why we are all under a death sentence from the moment natural life is imparted to us, simply because Adam and Eve had death imputed to them, because of disobedience. That will help you better understand why the embryo in Mary’s womb had to be created from both the male and female side, for if God had just supernaturally fertilized an egg from Mary’s reproductive organs, Jesus could not possibly have been without sin, for Mary had the same inherited nature to sin that every other offspring from Adam’s race had.


WHO HELPED GOD CREATE ADAM?


Let us go into the Gospel of Luke now, where in chapter 1, verse 26, we find the angel Gabriel speaking with Mary. “And in the sixth month (the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy) the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth.” Let me just stop reading right there, and make a couple of observations that I believe are important. First of all, if you are paying attention, I believe you will catch something that will clarify Genesis 1:26, for you, if you have been prone to lean toward a trinity idea of the Godhead. In Genesis 1:26, “God said, Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and so forth,” and all Trinitarians use that verse trying to prove that God is three persons, rather than one Spirit like the Bible declares Him to be. Well, Bro. Jackson: If God was not speaking to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, when He said that, who was He speaking to? He was speaking to the same ones He no doubt spoke to when it came time for the participants in the first advent of Jesus Christ to be informed, His angelic helpers. Gabriel did not come to Mary, Joseph and Zacharias, without a command from the Father to do so. Therefore I ask you, What do you suppose first took place when it came time for this great event to transpire? The Bible does not give us all of this, but I can believe that the Father said, LET US inform Zacharias that his prayer is heard, and that his wife Elizabeth shall bear him a son. In Luke 1:29, Gabriel said to him, “I am SENT to speak unto thee, and to show thee glad tidings.” God used the same angelic helpers to set the stage for the appearance of the second Adam (Jesus Christ 1 Cor. 15:45) that He used in the creation of the first Adam. If you can see this, it will clear up a lot of the muddy water that has been keeping the true light of God’s word from becoming real to you. Even the very next verse there in Genesis 1, declares that God is one, if people would just read on with an open mind. Pay close attention to every word of verse 27, as we read, and I believe you will see it. “So God created man in HIS own image, in the image of GOD created HE (GOD) him; (Adam ) male and female created HE (GOD) them” (Adam & Eve). Does that sound like God is three distinct persons, all three equal in authority, and all three agreeing upon everything that is done? Why do you suppose God is mentioned altogether in the singular, if He is more than one? Also, let me ask you this, Why is HE always mentioned, and referred to, in masculine terminology, if there was the remotest possibility that He could be feminine instead of masculine, as some of these Women’s Liberation movements try to claim? Saints: I am so thankful that God’s word explains itself, when we just simply allow Him, by His Spirit, to take our minds and lead us through the Bible. Hallelujah! What a great God He is! I love Him. What God created in His image, and after His likeness, was not a human form; it was a spirit being with the same attributes as the Creator, and He could say, After OUR image and likeness, because His angels were spirit beings also.

 

GOD’S WORD IS GOD’S THOUGHTS


While we are on the subject of God’s image, we just as well go into the Colossian letter where Paul was dealing with this very subject, and try to clear it all up while we are at this point in the message. We will start with verse 12, of chapter 1, so that we may pick up this thought. “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us fit to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath (It is already done.)translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son: (Jesus Christ) In whom (Jesus) we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature.” Let us be sure we realize that the “WHO” in verse 15, is Jesus the Christ, but at the same time we must also realize that it is not His flesh, that is the image of the invisible God; it is the Spirit man dwelling in that flesh. So now we will read verse 16, and that will require us to go to the first chapter of John’s gospel to get a clarification of who created all things. Notice here now, still speaking of Jesus the Christ, Paul says, “For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him, and for Him.” To some, that seems like a contradiction of other scriptures, and to others it sounds like Jesus the Son of God, was with Him in creation, and even, that the Son was the one that did the creating, so that is why we want to read a few verses from the gospel of John. Notice verse 1. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Now verse 14 says, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.” Naturally we understand that the flesh was the flesh of Jesus, but that only occurred two thousand years ago, when by the Word of God, or when the Word which was God, spoke, to create an embryo in the womb of Mary, the young virgin, and she nurtured it to birth. But what about the original creation, Why did Paul say, while speaking of Jesus Christ, that all things were created by Him? Brothers and sisters: You just have to realize Paul, having a revelation of the Godhead, and writing to saints that also had such a revelation, was speaking of the Father which dwelt in the Son, and was ONE with Him, when he said that all things were created by Him. As we go to the Greek to get the meaning of the terminology in John 1:1, we find that in the Greek, this WORD term, used here, simply means, “a thought, or concept,” and also pertains to the expression or utterance of that thought. So it was God’s thoughts that were with Him before there was ever anything created, and by those thoughts, were all things created. Therefore as we continue reading in John 1:2, let us be conscious of the fact that WORD, as used here, applies to the Father, and not to the Son, and if the Father created all things by his Word, then certainly, we know Paul the apostle knew that, and was not even thinking in terms of the Son, when he wrote that particular statement to the Colossians. John 1:2, “The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made. In Him was life; (still speaking of the Father) and the life was the light of men.” That life spoken of in verse 4, pertains to eternal life, and it is that eternal life that has become the light of men, for this eternal life in man, illuminates and makes know the very will and purpose of God. That eternal life has shined in darkness, and the darkness cannot comprehend it. The word darkness pertains to the sinful and evil world, and encompasses all of Satan’s demonic forces as well as all evil men. They cannot lay hold upon this light, for this eternal life is shed forth upon only those who were unknown of the Father before the foundation of the world. Verse 10 says. “He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.” He (the Father) was in the world, ( in the flesh of His Son ) and the world was made by Him, (before there ever was this Son) and the world knew Him not. But when He came unto His own, He came in the form of a man, and His own received Him not. Instead of receiving Him, they allowed their very Messiah to be crucified.


WHO CREATED ALL THINGS?


I believe we have sufficiently showed that Paul could not possibly have been referring to the Son when he wrote to the Colossians, that all things were created by Him. Of course we do certainly realize that the Son of God was in the very Spirit image of the Father, but the Son (as the Son) was not with the Father in creation, except in His great mind. Even to say that the WORD was the Son, after the Son came into the World, is not correct terminology, for He was just the expression of that WORD, which, as we pointed out, pertains to the thoughts of the Father, in redemption. That is why He (Jesus) said, I only do what my Father shows me. Now let us read Colossians 1:19, and we will return to Luke. “For it pleased the Father that in Him (Jesus) should all fulness dwell.” Yes, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was a full expression of all the attributes of the Father. That is how God chose to walk among men. Not by vacuuming Himself from His omnipresent existence, and pouring all of Himself into His Son, but simply by filling His Son with the fulness of everything that He is. It is just like taking a half filled glass of spring water and filling it the rest of the way with salt water from the Pacific Ocean. Once you do that, you then have in that glass a full representation of all the mineral content of the Pacific Ocean, but you do not have all the Pacific Ocean in your glass. Yet you could truthfully hold that glass up and say, that the fulness of the Pacific Ocean was there in your glass. Do you see it? Every attribute of the Father was present in the Son. Yet from the standpoint of the flesh, Jesus was human in every way, and that takes us back to Luke 1:27, where Gabriel was sent to Nazareth, “To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.” If I was going to Israel to find such a person, and I had never been there before, I would no doubt have to ask along the way, Could you tell me how to get to Nazareth? Then when I finally reached Nazareth, I would be asking someone, Where will I find a certain young woman named Mary, who is espoused to a man named Joseph? Do you catch my point? That angel knew exactly where to go, how to get there, and how to find the certain virgin named Mary. He made no mistakes. “And the angel came in unto her, and said, hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee: (Jehovah Elohim) blessed art thou among women. (The Catholics sure like to use this verse.) And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.” In other words, What sort of greeting is this? What is he getting ready to say? “And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.” Now even though Isaiah said, His name shall be called Emmanuel, the angel told both Mary and Joseph, that His name would be JESUS, so there was no mistake made. Emmanuel meant, God with us, but that was not to be the name He would be called by, for the name JESUS conveyed all the attributes of the Father, and came in perfect harmony with Isaiah 9:6, which gives many of the titles attributed to Him. As for myself, I find it very interesting in reading Isaiah 9:6, that God spoke in such a way as to be speaking on behalf of the people who would be looking for the Messiah, a Savior which was to come. “For unto US a child is born, unto US a son is given.” Simeon and Anna were both good examples of those in Israel who looked for, longed for, and lived for the day that their promised Redeemer would appear.


SIMEON AND ANNA IN THE TEMPLE


Notice Luke 2:25, what is said about Simeon. “And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel; (the deliverance, or Comforting) and the Holy Ghost, (If this had been written at the very time it took place the term Holy Ghost would not have been used; it would no doubt, have stated that the Spirit revealed unto him.) That he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ, (or anointed one) And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law, Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; (but only a few, recognized what child this was) A light to lighten the Gentiles, (Notice this prophetic promise to Gentiles.) And the glory of thy people Israel.” Actually this child was not yet God’s anointed one, but since Simeon was giving out a prophecy, everything is spoken in a positive sense. I can just see that devout old man standing daily in the temple compound, always looking with expectancy toward every little baby that was carried past him, for he knew in his heart that he would not die until his eyes had seen the Lord’s promise, the Messiah that was to come. In the natural,, there was nothing different about this little baby that Mary and Joseph brought in. He probably looked just like all the rest, to everyone else, but I believe that Simeon and Anna saw a light around him that others did not see. Besides that, the Spirit of God was present to say, (though not be audible words) This is the one you have been waiting to see. He no doubt walked to Mary and said, Madam: Would you please let me hold your little baby? Probably, tears of great joy began to roll down his cheeks as he held that little baby in his arms, and he began to pray, and magnify God who had been faithful to His promise. Then he said, Lord, now let thy servant depart in peace, according to your word: for my eyes have seen thy salvation. By the Spirit, he could see what this child was destined to become. Was salvation already accomplished? Only in the mind of God, but everything was moving forward toward that hour. Simeon would be a dead man himself, long before Jesus would ever hang upon that old rugged cross, and therefore would never see the day when Gentiles would be partakers of God’s great salvation plan, but he rejoiced to be able to see it in the Spirit, and to be able to hold in his arms the very little vessel that would one day, fulfill all that he had been showed by the Spirit of God. Let us read some more. Verse 33, “And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him.” (Here was a man, revealing things that went far beyond what the angel of the Lord had revealed to them, as he appeared to them individually. This man stood there holding the little baby in his arms and began to prophesy as he blessed them.) Verse 34, “And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel: and for a sign which shall be spoken against: Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also, that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.” The Godhead was not even in the picture at this time. Every mention of the Lord, and of the Holy Ghost, pertains to the one great eternal Spirit Elohim, which existed before there ever was anything else. This same Spirit had been dealing with an elderly woman named Anna, and she also appeared on the scene about the time Simeon handed the baby back to his mother, so let us read verses 36-38, and hear what she had to say, by the same Spirit that caused Simeon to prophesy. “And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; and she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple (they were not actually allowed access to the temple itself, but to the temple grounds within the walls.) But served God with fasting and with prayers night and day. (Notice what Luke said about her.) And she coming in at that instant (right when Simeon was handing the little baby back to its mother)gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to ALL THEM, THAT LOOKED FOR REDEMPTION IN JERUSALEM,” all them that believed Isaiah’s prophecy, and trust in the Lord to fulfill it. God never has any missing pieces to the puzzle, He is putting together. Everything falls right exactly into place, and at the exact time it is supposed to. That is why we need not fear, nor be over anxious about the rapture of the church, and what my take place before then, for God is in perfect control of it all.


EDUCATION PRODUCES MAKE BELIEVERS


Alright, so the angel of the Lord told Mary that she would conceive in her womb, bring forth a son, and that he should be called JESUS, and then continues saying, “He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: (In other words, This child is going to be special child, and will be called the Son of the Highest. There, again, let me say, If God, known as the Father, is the Highest, then it would be impossible for there to be three, all equal in authority.) And the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of His father David: And He shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of His kingdom there shall be no end.” Actually time just passes from the Millennial age right on into the Eternal age. “Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” Since we are devoting the time to this message to try and clear up a lot of tradition in the minds of God fearing people, let me just take this opportunity right here to point out the fact once again, that if the Holy Ghost, the Highest, and God, the Father, are not all one and the selfsame Spirit, then Jesus had more than one Father. I hope this is clear to all of you who love truth, for it is such an important point, in striking down this trinity doctrine that is so common among Gentiles. So just think about this for a moment, before we move on. Anyone that has common sense knows that whoever impregnates a woman, is the father of the child that comes forth, and both here, and also in Matt. 1:20, we learn that Mary was with child of the Holy Ghost, (the Spirit of God.) Therefore her child JESUS, having but one Father, and that one Father being the great eternal Spirit, the Creator, how can anyone possibly allow themselves to believe that the Holy Ghost was, and is another person of the Godhead? Even pagans, before the advent of Jesus Christ, knew that a baby, born of woman, had only one father, so how can people who profess to be enlightened by the Spirit of God, believe something that is absolutely impossible? Only the devil himself, could hatch up such a foolish bunch of nonsense. They (those who believe in a trinity)say that it is a great mystery, and that we are not supposed to understand it, and brother, it is a good thing that a true child of God does not have to try to understand such a senseless bunch of nonsense, or he could never have a minute’s peace of mind. You would never know who to pray to, you would never know how many thrones God has in heaven, nor what to expect when you get there. With a trinity concept of God, and a closed mind about the Godhead, the more you study the scriptures, the more confused you become. That is why these great Doctors of Divinity have to use such high and holy terminology, it is a disguise, to hide their spiritual ignorance. They did not get those words, and terms of speech from the Bible, I know that much; for the Bible is written in terminology so simple that even the uneducated can understand it, if they have the Spirit of God to guide them. Therefore I say to you, whoever you may be that looks to your education to reveal God to you, You are searching in vain. God cannot be found that way. Did not Jesus Himself say, “Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” That means that in child like faith we must accept Him, and allow the Holy Ghost to teach us what we need to know, instead of depending upon our education, or our situation in life. Some people have spent their whole life in church, so to speak, and they are still just as lost as anyone else, because they have never come to Jesus Christ the only way he will receive anyone. How is that, Preacher? Brother, there is only one way, and that is the way Peter pointed those Orthodox Jews to, in Acts 2:38, when they finally asked, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Peter answered them saying, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the NAME OF JESUS CHRIST for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. All of those Jews were already religious, just like many of you, but they needed to be born again, in order to enter into God’s great redemption plan, and so do a lot of you. Your father’s religion, or your mother’s religion will never get you into the kingdom of God. It may keep you going to church. It may cause you to take part in all that the true saints are doing, but the sad truth is, no matter how much you do, if you never come to the reality of the new birth, you are just a hypocrite, a make believer. Now, don’t get offended at me, I am trying to help you. It is God’s word that requires you to be born again, in order to enter into the kingdom of God, and none of you should have to be told whether or not you have been born again. If you do not know beyond any shadow of doubt that you have, then the chances are great, that you never have. For the Spirit of God bears witness with our spirit that we are the sons and daughters of God. (1 John 5:10, Romans 8:16) Therefore it you do not have that witness within you, your works in the church are vain. Romans 8:9, the last part of the verse says, “ Now if any man (or any person) have not the Spirit of Christ, he (or she) is none of His.” If you are too high up in church government to ever humble yourself and obey the gospel according to God’s only way, then you will live your life as a make believer, and die in your sinful state of unbelief, and the only record of your life upon earth will be dependant upon what people think of you, and that has no eternal value. To obey is better than sacrifice, says the word of God, regardless of who you are.


JESUS— OUR ELDER BROTHER


Now if you have followed my words this far in the message, and you still believe in the trinity, don’t blame me when you are rejected of God, for I have told you the truth, and I have not asked you for one thing in return. I have nothing to sell, and I am not trying to make a great name for myself; I am only trying to obey the call that I believe God has upon my life. If you have better words in which to express the truth of God’s word, then use them. You will not offend me in the least. I just have to use what I have. One thing I do know though, when we get to Revelation, chapters 21 and 22, we will be right back where it all started from, in the Garden of Eden, all believing in one God, and He will be all in all, just like the apostle Paul stated, in 1 Cor. 15:28. God will be back in His family in the fulness of Himself throughout all eternity. In 1 Cor. 15:28, Paul said, “Then cometh the end, when He (Jesus) shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when He shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For He (Jesus the Christ) must reign, till He hath put all enemies under His feet. The enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” So, brothers and sisters: There will come that glorious day when Jesus will no longer have to function in the redemption offices, for all of God’s lost creation will be redeemed back to the place Adam had with Him before the fall. Jesus will then be our elder brother (Heb. 2:11) in the great family of God. Bro. Jackson: Does that mean that Jesus will lose something. NO. It means that we will gain something, so that we will be just like Him. It really is not a matter of Jesus losing anything; it simply is a matter where God’s Ambassador of Peace has accomplished His mission, and no longer has any need for the credentials He carried in the role of redemption. Does that mean that all of God’s redeemed children will be perfect, just like Jesus? That is what redemption is, returning something back to its original. When Adam was created, he too was sinless, and possessed the same attributes as the God that created him. That is what being in the image of God means. Adam was God’s first son, but Jesus was God’s first begotten Son. Adam was created from nothing, while Jesus was allowed to pass through God’s law of reproduction from the standpoint of His flesh. In other words, God bypassed the sex act between man and woman, and simply created an embryo in the womb of Mary, and then allowed the woman’s body to take it from that point. Therefore as far as the flesh of Jesus is concerned, it was made from the same carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and water from the earth, that all other flesh is made from, through what Mary ate and drank. By bypassing the creative law of reproduction, that is, from the seed of a man coming into contact with the egg of a woman, and just simply creating an embryo in the womb of Mary, by His spoken word, Jesus was born of woman just like all other little babies are born, but he was without any of the inherited attributes that all the rest of us have. It is a biological fact, that every little baby born into this world as a result of the sex act between man and woman, has equal hereditary attributes both from the mother and the father. At any rate, regardless of what terminology you may wish to use, to speak of it, God created a perfect life cell in the womb of that young virgin girl, and that is the reason, and the only reason that it can be said that Jesus was completely sinless, and perfect in every way. He had a Godlike nature, and in every way, attributes of God, yet he was not deity until the day John baptized him, and the Spirit of the Father who created that cell of life in Mary, descended upon Him from heaven, in the (as Luke described it) bodily shape of a dove. At that time, a voice came from heaven saying, “Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.” From that time and onward, the great God of all creation was incarnated in the flesh and blood man called the Son of God. But all this talk you have heard about the eternal Son of God is incorrect, for until two thousand years ago, the Son Jesus, existed only in the mind of God. He was in the mind of God even before there was a son, or moon, or any star, and the very virgin that would carry that cell of life was in His mind also, but not until two thousand years ago, did this Son have any literal material existence. For a full thirty years this Son of God grew up in stature and maturity, and during that time, he spoke as the Son of God, just like at the temple that day, when Mary and Joseph had been searching for Him, and upon finding Him sitting in the midst of the scholars, both hearing them as well as asking questions of them, and when Mary inquired of His behavior, He said, How is it that ye sought me? Know ye not that I must be about my Father’s business? They did not understand exactly what He meant, but we can be assured that He knew who His Father was, and He was learning all about Him.


JESUS’ FIRST MIRACLE


Now the Catholics will tell you that as a little boy He was out creating birds and so forth, but I am here to tell you, that this perfect Son of God never did any miracles at all, until after He was baptized by John. I know that disturbs some of you, but I can prove it by the scriptures to anyone who will take the scriptures as the authority. It is true, as we have already pointed out, that all the prophecies about Him were spoken in the present, positive sense, but they only became effective when He was anointed to fulfill them. You will recall, that after He was baptized, He was driven by the Spirit, into the wilderness, to be tested by the devil. That is where He proved Himself to be the perfect Son of God. Before that, there were no miracles performed by Him. We go to the 2nd chapter of John to prove that. We find here that He is attending a wedding reception in Cana of Galilee, and when they ran out of wine, Mary came to Him and said, “They have no wine.” But, notice what He said back to her. “Woman, what have I to do with thee? Mine hour is not yet come.” That was not God speaking; that was the Son speaking. He did not yet know what to do about it. He only knew that it was not yet time for Him to do anything except to continue walking obediently to the Father. But Mary just ignored His answer, and said to the servants, Whatever He tells you to do, that do ye. So now He has really been put on the spot, and the Father did not forsake Him, for about that time, He looked at those servants and said, Fill the water pots with water, and they did as they were told. Then He said to them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. I need not go on. You and everyone know the story. What they served from those water pots was the best wine that any of them had drank. Turning that water into wine was His first miracle. Verse 11, tells us so, but I want you to know, those words, “Fill the water pots with water,” were not the words of the Father. The Father and the Son are now a complete unity, if I may express it like that. The Spirit of the Father and of the Son are one Spirit, and from that time on, throughout the rest of His ministry upon earth, one time you would hear Him speak as the Son, and another time, you would hear Him speak as the Father. That is what Trinitarians are never able to reconcile. They hear Him praying to the Father, and they will say, There has to be more than one, or else He (Jesus) would be praying to Himself. Now, Saints, Do not allow your mind to be channeled into the devils’s trap. The fact that the Father (Spirit) dwells in His Son, does not eliminate the Son, and neither does it remove the Father from His omnipresence in the universe. Therefore even though all the fulness of the Father dwelled in Him, Jesus the Son was not looking within Himself when He prayed; He spoke to the omnipresent Spirit just like we do. Is that clear: Can you see it? I will use a little illustration, that may make this a little more clear to some of you. It will not be exactly the same, but it will allow you to see how one set of vocal cords can be used both by God and by the person whose voice does the speaking. A person could be speaking upon any human subject one minute, and the very next minute the Spirit of God could anoint him to speak, “Thus saith the Lord.” It would be the same vocal cords being used, in both instances, but the, “Thus saith the Lord, would not be from the human spirit of the person; it would be from the Spirit of God in him. The big difference here is, Jesus had the Spirit of God without measure, and we have only a measure. You can turn to John 3:34, and see what John said about Jesus Christ. “For He whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto Him.” In other words, Here was a Son completely submitted to the will of the Father in all things, therefore the Father bestowed upon that Son, all power and authority to accomplish His mission and purpose, but when the Son exercised that authority and power to perform a miracle, it was from that standpoint of the Father rather than the Son.


JESUS’ THREEFOLD WORK UPON EARTH


Naturally this great subject of the Godhead, encompassing the humanity and the deity of Christ, is too big for any of us to comprehend with the natural mind, and that is what has caused religious minded people down through time, just to give a traditional interpretation to those things that they did not understand, and let it go at that. But tradition, in the spiritual mind of a person, is darkness, while truth in that same mind, is light. That is what John meant when he said that this light lighteth the pathway of every man, or is made available to every man, but all men are not going to receive that light, and that is where the condemnation is. Those who love darkness better than light, are rejected of God. Their traditions are not acceptable to Him. You may believe exactly what your saintly old grandmother believed, and still be walking in darkness, for truth has been made available to you, that was not present in her hour, and that is what God is looking at . The Scribes and Pharisees in the days when Jesus Christ walked upon earth, had their traditions which spoke of this great revelation that was to come, but when it came in such a simple fashion, they were not able to shake themselves loose from their traditions, to receive it. That great light was walking the streets of Jerusalem in the flesh of His only begotten Son, and only those to whom the Father revealed Himself, were able to see it. That is why Jesus said, “No man can come to me, except the Father (the Spirit ) draw him.” The Jews were to see the Father, in Jesus, (John 14:7-11) but the disciples were to see Jesus, in the church, (John 16:16-17) Jesus had a threefold work in revealing the Father to the Jews of that day. For He was to reveal His name, His word, and His works. All this was in Jesus the Christ. In John 14:9, He said to Phillip, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father.” Why did He say that? Because Phillip had just said, Lord, Show us the Father, and we will be satisfied. You have to have a spiritual eye to see the Father in me? That kind of intermingling would be impossible for anything except spirit beings. “The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: (The Son talking) but the Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works sake.” Now notice verses 13-14, how the name of the Father is revealed. The redemption name of the Father is the name of the Son, so He says, “And whatever ye shall ask in my name, that will I DO, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” Why would the Father be glorified? Because it is by the power and authority of the Father, that the Son is able to perform feats that go beyond the realm of natural man. 14 “If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I WILL DO IT.”


HIS WORD— HIS WORKS— HIS NAME


Now notice verse 26, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my NAME, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” It is by the authority of the Father, that the Spirit of Christ is shed abroad in our hearts. There are many scriptures that we could read, which show that Jesus’ mission was to reveal the Father to His creation, but for now, let us just read a few verses from John chapter 17, where Jesus was praying to the Father. In verse 3, we find, “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the WORD which thou gavest me to do.” Here we see that He had been doing the WORKS of the Father, and in verse 6, we see that it was the Father’s name that was being revealed through Him. “I have manifested (made known) thy NAME unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, (by foreknowledge and predestination) and thou gavest them me; and they have kept THY WORD. Verse 7, Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee. Notice verse 8. For I have given unto them the WORDS which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.” So it is the works of the Father, and words of the Father, and the Father’s name, that was being revealed during the 3 ½ years Jesus walked among men. Then when we go back to John 14:12, we learn something else. Not only did Jesus do the WORKS of the Father, but those who believe on Him will also do likewise. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the WORKS that I do shall he do also; and greater WORKS than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” That just allows us to see that it is God’s name, God’s word, and God’s works, that are revealed to mortal men, when the true Gospel is preached. But none of these are revealed through the preaching of man’s traditions. Trinitarians speak of God being incarnated in Jesus Christ, but they did not, and do not understand it, or they would not believe that God is three persons. They speak of the only begotten Son of God, and never once stop to realize the fact that if He were begotten of the Father, He could not possibly have had any part in the creation of the first man Adam. Bro. Jackson, the Bible says all things were created by Him. Yes, I know. We have already been through all of that, and you did not catch the revelation of it. All things were created by He(the Father Spirit)that dwelled in the Son (Jesus the Christ.) Brothers and sisters: It requires a spiritual revelation to walk with God in truth. For even the ancient Egyptians believed that the God of heaven was incarnated in flesh, but the flesh that they looked to, was that of a cow. I have seen the tombs where they would entomb their sacred cows. They were just as serious about their religion as any of you. Now you say, (picture of Take The Narrow Road In the Middle, THUS SAITH THE LORD)But that is just plain spiritual ignorance. I agree. But that is also what believing that God is three persons is, spiritual ignorance, likened unto paganism.


WHAT CAME DOWN FROM ABOVE?


Brother Jackson: I still do not understand how Jesus could pray to the Father saying, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was, if Jesus did not come down to earth from heaven. Even Jesus Himself said, “I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world; again I leave the world, and go to the Father.” Alright, let us just go back to the birth of Jesus and look at a couple of realities, for when this message is completed, I pray that everyone of you will be able to see exactly, in what capacity God was in His Son Jesus, and also how He accomplished it, and in what way is He also in every born again believer. For centuries the Jews had been looking for the fulfillment of the prophecies concerning their promised Messiah, and they knew that their Messiah was going to be a man, a man anointed by that divine Spirit of God. But they, like religious people of all ages, gave the scriptures their own human interpretations, and closed their minds so tightly that they could not be opened to receive the Messiah when He came God’s way. By man’s reasoning, the birth of Jesus who was to be the Christ, should have been announced to the religious leaders of that day, but God who knows the heart’s innermost thoughts of every man, had a different opinion about it. In the first place He let Him be born under very obscure circumstances. There was no great preliminaries leading up to His birth. In fact Mary her self did not even know exactly when she would give birth to the little baby she was carrying, for she did not know at what moment in her life conception actually took place. That is why she left Nazareth, and went to Bethlehem with Joseph, to pay their taxes, without taking along anything for the little baby that would be born of her while they were there. This accounts for the fact that, He was wrapped in swaddling clothes when the shepherds went to see Him, which was nothing more than some old rags, the wrappings off of an old ox yoke that was probably hanging on the wall there in the stable. Do you think any expectant mother would be without little baby clothes, when that little one arrives, if she knows approximately when to expect it? We all know better than that. All right, so what did God do, when the little baby was born? He sent His angels to announce the birth of His only begotten Son, not to the religious leaders in Jerusalem, but to some humble shepherds abiding in the field with their flocks out on the Judean hillside. We have already touched on it, but turn back to Luke 2:8, and let us read a few verses. “And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory (presence) of the Lord shone round about them: And they were afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” When the angels left them, those shepherds immediately went into town to find the Savior that had been born unto them. They found Him exactly as they had been told they would, for there in a manger lay the little baby, wrapped in those old rags to keep him warm. Was He the Son of God at that moment? Yes, He most certainly was. For He, like every other little baby boy that is born into the world, is the son of the one that its mother conceived from, and we already know that Mary conceived by the Spirit of God, without the sex act that God’s natural law of creation works through. Therefore we can say dogmatically, Yes, that little baby lying there was already the Son of God. But right here is where I want every one of you to pay close attention to what I say. The flesh lying there DID NOT come down from above. Every molecule of it was from the earth. Is that understood? All right then, What did come down from above? What was with the Father in creation? The very spirit of life that was in that little body of flesh, is what came down from above. But that life was not deity at that time; it was just perfect human life exactly like Adam had before He disobeyed God, and had a sentence of death imputed to him. In other words Jesus was a flesh and blood human being, and the Spirit of life in that flesh and blood is what came down from above, but it was not the Spirit, Elohim, the Father of all creation. It was the spirit of life from that Spirit which is that source of all life. Maybe you could better understand, if you will just stop to realize that the spirit of life in every creature comes from that one great eternal, omnipresent Spirit called, The Father. But as we have said already, the thing that made Jesus sinless, was the fact that his conception bypassed the genes of Joseph and Mary, and came directly to the womb of Mary by an act of creation. That is why the Son could pray to the Father, and also speak of coming out from God. He knew exactly who He was. He also knew that He did hot have that Spirit of deity, until after He was baptized by John at the age of thirty years. He knew Joseph was not His paternal father, but He also knew that He was to respect him as His earthly father in all matters of respect and submission. Genetically, there was nothing in Him from Joseph nor from Mary, but from the human standpoint Mary was His mother, because she gave birth to Him. It was also proper and customary for Joseph to be referred to as His father; we all understand that, I am sure. But what is so hard for so many to understand, is how a child at age 12, could have such perfect knowledge and understanding of the things of God. Brother! That is how every one of us would have been, if Adam had not done what he did. As I said already, He had a perfect mind throughout all the years of His childhood, but He had to be allowed to grow up into manhood, and come to maturity before deity powers were bestowed upon Him. Then, even after the Spirit of the Father descended, and abode with Him, He still had to be tested and proved, in order to see if He would misuse those deity attributes. That is what the test in the wilderness was for, after He was baptized, after the Father had taken up His residence inside the Son.


THE CHOICE IS YOURS TO MAKE


Many people seem to have the idea that a child of God, filled with the Holy Ghost, cannot be tempted, but that is the furthest thing from the truth. Actually, that is when the real temptation, or testing, begins. For you then have something in you that can resist the devil and all his demonic powers, but that something in you, will not force you to follow the right path every time you are tested. He is there to enable you to overcome, if that is your choice, and He is there to chasten you if you make the wrong choice, but He will not force your choice. Yes, He will influence your choice. He will flash scriptures before your face, and at times, even allow you to see what the consequences of a wrong choice will be, but the choice is yours to make. That is how it was with Adam. He was not forced to disobey God’s command, and neither was he tricked by the devil. He knew what God had said, “In the day that thou eatest thereof (or partakest) thou shalt surely die,” but he went ahead just the same, by his own choice, and thereby brought down a death sentence upon the whole human race. When Jesus was tested, there in the wilderness, the fulness of the Godhead that Paul spoke of to the Colossians, was already dwelling in Him, so that He could have literally turned every one of those stones into a tasty loaf of bread, but that obedient Son refused to use the supernatural power of God to satisfy a need of the flesh. You say, If the Father had already joined Himself to the Son, could He really have been hungry? Yes, absolutely. That did not change His flesh in the least. The human (flesh and blood man) Son of God still had to be fed and cared for just the same as anyone else. The big difference is, He did not pamper His flesh like we do. What He did as a Son of God was set a perfect example before all who would ever be faced with choices between right and wrong in this life. Not just as an adult, but throughout His whole life. It would be wrong for us to even think that He did not enjoy playing with other children as a boy growing up, for I believe there were certain things He enjoyed doing. But you can believe me, He was not out somewhere throwing rocks at His neighbor’s camels, stealing, nor shooting dice in a back alley. His mind was constantly occupied with how to please the Father, the great eternal Spirit. When we are born again, God desires for us to catch a true vision of this perfect Son of God, and pattern our own lives after it. No I am not talking about a supernatural vision by the Spirit; I am talking about us seeing Jesus Christ in the scriptures in such a real way, that His fervency to always please the Father will cause us to dwell more and more on pleasing the Father. That is a real part of growing into the stature of Jesus Christ. It is a wonderful thing, to know the truth. But it is a pathetic sight, to see people who know the truth, actually living below the moral standards of some ancient pagans. Then there is another element of religious people that spend all their efforts trying to be where they can witness or partake of some supernatural phenomena, and these never give any thought to the true doctrine of Christ, nor to proper Christian conduct and moral behavior. These seem to think of God’s gifts of the Spirit the same way a small child does a box full of new toys; they will play with one for a little while, then throw it down and try another one. Are you getting my point? I have actually been present in meetings where the gifts of the Spirit was used like toys, and I am sure that some of you have too, but it ought not to be so. Of course we all realize that babes in Christ do not understand everything there is to know about proper Christian conduct the first day they give their heart to God, but there is absolutely no excuse whatsoever for such a person to go year after year without ever growing in the stature of the Lord Jesus Christ.


GOD’S WORD IS OUR DEFENSE


Now at this point, I want to explain something to you about the Godhead. We have used the scripture many times, even in this message already, where Paul wrote to the Colossians saying, “For in Him (Jesus Christ) dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in Him, which is the head of all principality and power.” But how many of you actually realize that there are still some things that He who is eternal keeps to Himself? In order not to feel like there is a contradiction here, we must realize what Paul was looking at when he wrote those words. When Jesus walked upon earth among men for 3 ½ years, what was his purpose? What was He to accomplish? He was to reveal the mind of God the Father in all things pertaining to the salvation of lost mankind. During that time all the fulness of the Godhead pertaining to that office was bestowed upon Him. But you know the prophets spoke of Him not only as Savior and prophet, but also as High priest and King, so I ask you, Was He King, when He walked upon earth? NO, He was King to be. Was He High Priest? No, He was High Priest to be. Brothers and sisters: When He comes, God incarnated, to fulfill His role as King of kings, He will not conduct Himself as a prophet. When He was a prophet, He was meek and lowly, but when He comes as King, He will be swinging a sword. He has been before the throne of the great eternal Spirit for two thousand years interceding for all that would ever repent and turn to God, but when time comes for Him to leave that mercy seat, intercession will be finished for the grace age. Therefore when you think of Him in the fulness of the Godhead, you need to think of the fulness of the purpose of God, or the will of God that He is seeking to unfold. Whatever realm He is functioning in, you will not find God working outside of that dimension. But He will certainly be there in all the fulness of His great attributes unfolding the fulness of His purpose. When Jesus was ministering here on earth for 3 ½ years, He was not demonstrating how to be a perfect King, He was demonstrating to all mankind, how to be a perfect son of God, how to yield to the will of the Father in every situation. Bro. Jackson: How can we always know the will of God? Saints, God is not unfair; He will never expect any of us to go beyond what we know to do, but at the same time, we have no right to expect God to reveal more of His will to us, unless we are making an honest effort to walk in what we know already. It is a proven fact, the closer you follow Him, the better you will know Him. But do not ever get the idea that walking close to God will set you free from Satan’s sneaky attacks, for he will watch for every opportunity to try and trick you. Whenever you get to feeling a little low for some reason or another, he will be right there accusing you, you must have done something wrong. Surely God doesn’t love you anymore, or He wouldn’t let you suffer like that, and a million other things, but regardless of what the devil throws at you, if you know how to use the sword of the Spirit (The word of God) you will always be able to overcome. That is why Paul wrote what he did in (1st Cor. 10:13,) “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer (allow) you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” In other words, those who walk close to God will always have that sword of the Spirit handy to use, just like Jesus did when Satan tempted Him, there in the wilderness. When the tempter said to Him, “If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.” But Jesus was ready with His sword, and said, “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” Then the devil took Him to Jerusalem, and sat Him upon a pinnacle of the temple, (Now the devil did not literally carry Jesus to Jerusalem and sit Him upon such an high place; he merely gave Him a vision) and saith unto Him, “If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down; for it is written, He shall give His angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.” Now the devil was actually quoting scripture to Him, (Psalms 91:11) but what did Jesus say to him? “Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.” (Some of these snake handlers ought to read that verse along with Mark 16:17-18, and there would not be so many of them dying from poisonous snake bites.) Then the devil took Him up to a high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; (by another vision) and said unto Him, “All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then Jesus saith unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve. Then the devil leaveth Him, and behold, angels came and ministered unto Him.” Now I hope you were paying attention, for I want to ask you a question. What power did Jesus use against Satan, that is not just as available to us, as it was to Him? Do not say, as some have, But He was God. That was not God being tempted, for God cannot be tempted with evil. You will find James saying that. This was the Son of God being tempted. The Father was in Him already, but He did not intervene. Everything was still up to the Son. This newly invested power and authority was there, but this Son of God overcame Satan the very same way He expects each and every one of us to overcome him, but our correct usage of the word of God. That is why Paul said in 2 Cor. 10:3-4, “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” I want you to know that there are very few times if any at all, that Satan will ever tempt you by speaking with an audible voice. It is the mind that he works through. Your vain imaginations do not come to you from the Spirit of God; they come from that other spirit that is the enemy of God. Yes, Satan is a spirit also, invested with certain powers, but those powers have become perverted, to be used for evil purposes that are contrary to the perfect will of the Creator.


JESUS SAID, FOLLOW ME


Now the father knew that the Son would not fail, but nevertheless, it had to become an established fact that the Son had been tested, and also how He overcame the tempter, or it could not have rightly been said, that in all points He was tempted like we are. Neither could Paul have written to the Hebrew saints saying, “Wherefore in all things it behooved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succor them that are tempted.” One thing I learned while I was in the army, was that an officer that had actually been in combat, spoke with a certain authority that could not be found in those that had just learned what they knew, from books, in a military academy. I will say this also, It is easier to obey the orders of an officer that will jump out of the fox hold and say, Follow me, Boys, and let’s get them, than one who sits back and says, Go get them, Boys. Are you getting my point? In Hebrews, Paul also wrote, that the captain of our salvation was made perfect through the things which He suffered, or through sufferings. In other words, He did not just say, Now all you that want to be saved, Get up and go do what I tell you, instead He said, Follow me. Sinful mankind could never have accepted that perfection and seen Him as a Savior, unless He too had been tempted and tested in every way that we are. The same one that refused to use supernatural power to satisfy His own personal hunger, a few months later, took a little boys lunch and fed a great multitude. Do you know why, or how? Because those people that had been following Him for days, without food to eat, were on the verge of dropping in their tracks, and when His compassion reached out to them, there was something in Him that just kept on multiplying those loaves and fishes. That same something was already in Him out there in the wilderness, but He refused to call upon that authority for the gratification of His own personal flesh. That pleased the Father to witness Him proving His example ship for you and me. After that temptation was completed, He returned in the power of the Spirit, or as another writer said, full of the Holy Ghost. Later when He returned to Nazareth where He was brought up, He entered into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read, as His custom was, so they brought Him a scroll of Isaiah, the prophet, and He read the portion where Isaiah had written, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” He closed the scroll and handed it back to the minister, and sat down. He knew there would be a day of vengeance, just like the 2nd half of verse 2 says, but that would be later, so He did not read that part. Brothers and sisters: I am showing you this to let you see how the Son knew exactly how to yield Himself to every scriptural setting. He just rolled up the scroll, handed it back, and said, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.” All that heard Him marveled at the gracious words He spake, but they began to say, Is not this Joseph’s son? You all know the story, how He knew exactly what they were thinking and whispering one to another, and said, “Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.” He went ahead to remind them how Elijah had been sent to only one of the many widows in the land during the time of a great famine, and how Namen the Syrian was healed of leprosy when there were so many others in the land of Israel at that same time which also had leprosy, and they must have caught the point He was making, for it says, they were all filled with wrath and would have thrown Him down from a high hill, if He had not passed from their midst. It just goes to show that people whose motives are not right, cannot bear to hear the truth. Trinitarian preachers that are afraid they might lose their job unless they preach what the congregation wants to hear, cannot stand to hear the truth about the Godhead. They enjoy standing so piously, and speaking of the blessed holy trinity, and how God is perfected in three persons, all equal in authority, yet three distinct persons, each having his own identity.

 

Brothers and sisters: I hope you are enjoying these messages as much as I am. For as I search out these many scriptures that we are using to show the humanity, and also the deity of Jesus the Christ, it thrills my soul just to realize that God saw fit to lift me up out of man’s traditions, and put a revelation in my heart that allows me to wade through all the confusion of our day, and see God’s great purpose being perfected in spite of all that Satan can do. HALLELUJAH! Praise His great name. Some think He should be called Jehovah, others say He should be called Yahweh, and others, This and That, but in my Bible, His redemption name is JESUS, and I like what Paul said in Ephesians about the whole family in heaven and earth being named that, In Ephesians 3:14-15, he said, “For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named.” I was born into a family by the name of Jackson, so I carry the Jackson name. It is a family name, that wherever I go it still identifies me with that certain family. You each have your family name that identifies you with certain genetic family. Why then would anyone object to God having a family name by which all His redeemed children would be called? That is exactly what the compound name JESUS is, and I believe the scriptures will bear that out, as we continue looking into this precious book for the scriptures that show both the humanity, and also the deity of Jesus the Christ. We will not only see a perfect man seeking only to please the Father in everything He does, but we will also see a perfect God being exemplified through that same body of flesh. When the apostle Paul said, Let this same mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, he was not just speaking idle words, that is exactly what God’s purpose if for us. His whole plan of redemption is designed to provide Him with a whole family of redeemed children that will be just like Jesus Christ. Tradition has God’s redeemed children going to heaven, there to dwell eternally in the heavens more as just a spirit than in a human family here on earth that He could fellowship with, and He will still have that family. As I have said many times before, redemption is restoring back, not making something different. Some of His saints will be in heaven in their immortal bodies for a period of about 7 years, but others will not leave this earth at all. They will be right here throughout all eternity.

 

We are going to hold the rest of what we have of this message until our next issue, for there are just too many more important points to be brought out, to try to get it all in one paper. There are many things in the Gospels that Jesus said, and did, that we want to examine more closely before we actually bring this great subject to a close, so pray for us, and watch for our next issue. May God be with you everyone, to guide you, and to protect and provide for you in this evil hour.

Watching For The Rapture

SAINTS: I WANT TO ASK YOU ONE QUESTION BEFORE I EVEN START TO DEAL WITH OUR ANNOUNCED SUBJECT. IN WHAT WAY ARE YOU, AS AN INDIVIDUAL BELIEVER, WATCHING FOR THE RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH? THIS SUBJECT IS VERY MUCH TALKED ABOUT IN OUR DAY, BUT SOME OF THE IDEAS THAT PEOPLE WHO CLAIM TO BE BORN AGAIN COME UP WITH, CAUSES ME TO WONDER IF THEY KNOW ANYTHING AT ALL ABOUT IT. EVEN SOME WHO YOU KNOW SHOULD KNOW BETTER, STILL SPEAK OF IT AS SOMETHING THAT COULD TAKE PLACE JUST ANY MOMENT. IT IS MAINLY FOR THIS REASON THAT I FEEL LED TO DEAL WITH IT AT THIS TIME.

I BELIEVE WE HAVE SUFFICIENT SCRIPTURES TO PROVE TO ANY REASONABLE THINKING PERSON, THAT THE RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD CANNOT TAKE PLACE JUST ANY MOMENT NOW. ON THE OTHER HAND, THE MESSAGE IS NOT MEANT TO GIVE ANYONE ANY REASON TO BE CARELESS, OR SLOTHFUL IN THEIR CHRISTIAN LIVING, FOR THE LORD JESUS CHRIST MAY COME FOR YOU BEFORE THIS MESSAGE IS FINISHED. IF HE DOES, YOU WILL STAND IN THE RESURRECTION INSTEAD OF THE RAPTURE OF THE LIVING BRIDE. THEREFORE I HOPE YOU WILL ALL BEAR WITH ME AS WE LOOK AT THE MANY SCRIPTURES THAT SHED LIGHT UPON THIS SUBJECT.

TEXT 1 THESSALONIANS 4:13-18

In an age when so many people are talking about the rapture of the bride of Christ, the translation of the saints, the catching away of the church, and so forth, let us endeavor to make sure we understand the terminology, and also, exactly who it applies to. Many people in our day who claim to be waiting for the rapture to take them out of this world and into the presence of Jesus, could not possibly partake of that blessed event as long as they hold to their present theology and traditional beliefs. Jesus is truly going to to call some saints to meet Him in the air one day, and it probably will not be much longer, but not everyone that speaks of such an event will be a part of it, for the scriptures tell us that He will present to Himself a perfect church without spot, wrinkle, or blemish. That, of course, will rule out all those who are trying to make it in on grandma’s religion, or some Trinitarian concept of what the gospel of Jesus Christ is all about. Our title for this message, “WATCHING FOR THE RAPTURE,” speaks of something every true child of God ought to be doing. Not with a telescope, but with eyes of faith, and a steadfast confidence in our hearts. To watch for that which the word of God tells us is coming, is not just a privilege we have; it is also our responsibility. But our watching must be based upon something more than just the doctrine of the translation; it must be because our lives are being lived according to the revelation of the hour, and we are ready to meet the Lord just any moment. Now please do not take this to mean that I am expecting the rapture just any moment, for as we have said before, there are still a few prophecies of the scriptures that must be fulfilled before that blessed event occurs, but those who are ordained to be in the rapture will not wait until all prophecies are fulfilled before they begin to make themselves ready to meet the Bridegroom. Yes, that’s right; if you are among that number it will be because you have made yourself ready; the preacher cannot do it for you. Revelation 19:7 says, “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife HATH MADE HERSELF READY.”

TRIBULATION SAINTS NOT RAPTURED

The rapture will be the glorious climax of a certain people’s journey through life and time. It will translate those who are ready into the very presence of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and they shall be with Him for ever and ever. But we are told to watch, and the Bible tells us how to watch, so that is what we are going to look at in the various scriptures we will read. Naturally we will be reading after the apostle Paul; for he was the scripture writer that had the revelation of how this journey will end for the bride of Christ. He did not have a revelation, or we will say His recorded revelation did not cover the foolish virgins that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 25:1-13, therefore what he wrote, was written to what he saw as the church of the living God, overcoming believers. He did not speak in a haphazard way. His objective was always consistent; and what he wrote to the various assemblies showed that he viewed all of them in the same light. It was he, who saw that there would actually be a translation of the saints. Jesus spoke of a resurrection for those who believed in Him, but He never gave any kind of order in which it would take place. Nor did He give any clues that would give anyone anything to go on; He only established the fact that there would be a resurrection. Therefore what Paul spoke concerning these things had to be spoken from a personal revelation given to him by the Lord Himself. There was no scriptures in the Old Testament that he could draw from as to the order of the resurrection, or the rapture of the saints, even though it did speak of a resurrection. Job, and David, and various others looked for a resurrection, but nowhere do we find any order given to it, or even who the beneficiaries will be, except in Paul’s writings, John, many years later as that first age was closing out, began to see things that would set in motion conditions which would enter in and run right on through to the end, making room for the fulfillment of what Jesus said about foolish virgins at the end time. In the book of Revelation, John tells of seeing a great multitude which no man could number, of all nations, kindreds, people, and tongues standing before the throne worshiping God, and he is told that this great multitude are those which have come up out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Of course that scripture alone does not speak of foolish virgins, but when you read it with Matthew 25:1-13, and Revelation 20:4, you will see that this great multitude not only consisted of martyred Jews from the great tribulation, but it also included those foolish virgins, people that believed in God, looked for the rapture according to man’s traditions, and failed to make themselves ready to partake of that blessed event. We will see more of the conditions that actually set the stage for foolish virgins as we go into the message, but now, let us go to 1Thessalonians where we will actually begin our study for this message, “Watching for the Rapture.”

STRAIGHTENING UP A REVELATION

Here we have an assembly of saints that have been taught by the apostle Paul, but like everyone else, their revelation had to be tested. Conditions will always arise that will test our attitude towards the scriptures, and how they are to be applied to our life. Our faith must run in true continuity with the scriptures that are revealed in our age, and many times we have to be reminded to check up on ourselves, and see if we are truly following a genuine revelation. From what we read here in 1 Thessalonians, I would say that a lot of them had begun to question the loss of loved ones in death, for they believed that Jesus would return in their lifetime, and no doubt expected all the saints to live to see Him. They were looking for the rapture, but somehow they just had not been able to see where saints would die before it took place. Therefore I can hear them, Bro. Paul: What is the meaning of all this? What has gone wrong? Paul had laid a good foundation for their faith to rest upon, but time itself takes it’s toll, so Paul writes them this letter dealing with various phases of the Christian life, and finally comes to the part about the resurrection, and the catching away of the saints in chapter 4, verses 13-18, so let us read some of what he had to say there. After exhorting them on how to walk and grow in the stature of Jesus Christ, dealing with proper attitude and conduct, he approaches the thing that seems to be bothering them the most. Verse 13,”But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, ( What a statement. Yet this is common terminology applied to those who do not have a revelation of the Word of God. We are to be enlightened scripturally.) concerning them which are asleep, (dead) that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.” Brothers and sisters, God intends for His true children to understand that which they have faith in. Of course there may be things written in the book ( Bible) in a mysterious way, but in every age God has always revealed to His true people what they needed to know to enable them to walk in the light of their age. Furthermore let me say this, God has never intended for anything to be written in a mysterious way, to confuse the saints. It is to hide truth from the world in general, so He can reveal it to those who love truth, and have purposed to walk accordingly. You can rest assured if you are walking in all the truth that God has revealed to you, that whatever else is destined to affect your life will be revealed to you also. Naturally we are speaking from the standpoint of a dedicated life of holiness before God and man, and not just that we may know something for the sake of telling it to show how much we know. I believe you understand. What we are dealing with here, is just some of the basic things that Christians are expected to grow in, as they take on the mind of Christ in their daily Christian walk.

THE FIRST RESURRECTION

Notice verse 14, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus (saints that have died) will God bring with him.” Let us understand now, that when Jesus comes fulfilling this scripture, He will not be bringing any literal bodies with Him. When Christians die, their bodies are entombed, but their spirit returns to the great eternal God, who is Spirit, and therefore will be present with God in spirit form only, when Jesus comes for the resurrection of the dead, and the translation of the living saints. Alright now, verse 15, “For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.” You will notice that Paul is not giving reference to anything that he has read out of a book. He says this is by the word of the Lord, which means, by the word of revelation. What is revelation? It simply means that we now understand something that was previously unknown and mysterious to us. Paul had a revelation and could state positively that the living saints would not prevent, or hinder those who had not died in the faith from being resurrected when that time arrives, and to be in Jesus, is to be in Him by the baptism of the Holy Ghost, according to 1 Cor. 12:13. “For by One Spirit are we all baptized into one body, ( the body of Christ) whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free: and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” People in former ages did not have end time scriptures revealed to them in fullness; they were only allowed to see a little profile. Full understanding is only imparted to the generation of believers that will be affected by the fulfillment of these various scriptures. In other words, They will be the ones that will see the real beauty of them. God has this thing so precisely worked out, that once a scripture is revealed to you, everything else that you may have believed about it suddenly becomes history. God’s objective is materialization, in the end, of all that the church has only been able to see through eyes of faith while on her journey through time. Let me say also, Here in verse 15, Paul is not talking about when Jesus comes to earth for the Millennium; this is when He comes to ressurect the righteous dead, and translate the living element of His bride into His very presence. This will be the 2nd phase of the 1st resurrection, leaving the 3rd phase to take place immediately following the great tribulation; for that is when those martyred saints that will be killed because of their faith during that dark hour of time, will be raised to reign with Christ and His bride for one thousand years. Going into the Millennium, only the wicked dead will be left in the ground, and they will remain there until the last resurrection of Revelation 20:11-15, the great white throne judgment, where all the wicked dead are resurrected, judged, and cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. You will find verse 6, of that chapter saying, “Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the 1st resurrection: (Those that were raised when Jesus arose from the dead, those that will be raised when the bride is translated, and those tribulation saints that will be raised going into the Millennium.) on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him (Who? Christ) a thousand years. So you can see that there will be saints from every age taking part in the 1st resurrection, and most of them have understood very little about this event during their lifetime, but that will not prevent them from being raised to reign with Christ in the Millennium. ( A lot of people feel that we should not teach anything about the Millennium, but what we teach comes from the Bible.)

CAN JESUS COME ANY MOMENT?

I have heard evangelists down through the years of my life, say, How many of you believe in the second coming of Christ? Well naturally that is the Christian’s hope, so then they would say, How many of you believe He could come just any moment? It was all designed to work on the emotions of the people and get them down to the altar boo-hooing. (crying) but in reality they had not been enlightened to one single truth from the Bible. People have been moved psychologically, to believe, or accept certain statements that had no scriptural authority whatsoever. Right here, I must say again as I have many times before. Jesus Christ CANNOT come just any moment to rapture the church. He can come for any individual at any moment, and that is why we need to be ready and watching, but that route will take you through the grave, and you will stand in the 2nd phase of the first resurrection when the time does arrive for the rapture of the church. This statement does not take from, nor add to that which the word of God proclaims; it just simply destroys a lot of evangelistic nonsense. Even Jesus Himself did not know the exact day and hour that the rapture would take place, but I assure you, He knew what would have to proceed the rapture in order for all of the prophecies of the scriptures to be fulfilled. Now some will say, But Bro. Jackson, if Jesus Christ was God, why would He not know everything? You must first understand that Jesus Christ was God in the sense that the great eternal Spirit, the Father of all creation incarnated Him, there at the Jordan River when John baptized Him. Therefore we could say that the Father in Him absolutely did know everything, and everyone that would ever breathe the breath of life, but from the standpoint of the Son, which was the flesh man Jesus, we would have to understand that there were some things that had not been committed to Him when He walked upon earth in His prophetic role. Truly He did say,”All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth” but that does not change, nor alter anything that we have said, and here is why. He was exercising Himself in His prophetic role then, He has been in heaven interceding for us in His role as high priest for almost two thousand years, and one day in the very near future He will don His kingly robe and fulfill those scriptures that proclaim Him to be King of kings and Lord of lords literally, instead of just spiritually, as He is to believers right now. So in each phase of His three fold office work He is invested with all power and authority in heaven and in earth in order to fulfill His redemptive work in the plan of the Father.

THE SHOUT

In the years prior to His first advent, some of those Jews might have thought that their Messiah could come just any moment, but you know, and I know that He could not come even one day before His appointed time, and that time was determined in the mind of the great eternal Spirit, His Father, the one who counseled with Himself before the world was ever created. On the other hand the very moment He arrived on the scene the Spirit of God announced it. Brothers and Sisters, these are some of the basic things that believers should be getting settled in their minds by now. Yes, He can come for me at any moment, but if He does, I will take my place among those that sleep in Jesus, and we will still have to wait until time itself has materialized to coincide with the mind of the great eternal Spirit. Therefore with this in mind, let us read verse 16, of our text, and please notice the three fold identify that Paul the great apostle to that first age, gives to His coming for the church. I believe Paul was actually seeing this in a visionary way. First he says, ” For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, ( and secondly) with the voice of the archangel, ( and thirdly) and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first.” This lets me know that when time has expired to the point for this event to take place, there is not one single thing that any man could do to hurry it up, nor to delay it, not even for one hour, for it is all activated from the heavenly realm. Now I realize that there is still a lot of confusion among the followers of Bro. Branham’s message about what the shout consists of, or what it is, but I will say this in defense of the scriptures, Whatever you term the shout to be, it is for one specific purpose, to get your attention. When you yell or shout at someone, it is to get their attention. That is why I am convinced that the shout has got to have a profound meaning, and that it is not to the dead, as many believe. If Paul here, was saying that the shout is what will get the dead out of their graves, then how could he justify what he said in Romans 8:11:? “But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, (there is your key; you must have that same Spirit dwelling in you before you die, that Jesus had dwelling in Him.) He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken (make alive) your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.” Do you see what I mean? It is that Spirit in you, that is going to give life back to your dead bodies, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you, so just be sure you know that you have been awakened to the reality of what is about to come. Furthermore, be sure you do not wake up and head in the wrong direction.

THE VOICE AND THE TRUMPET

Saints, I want to use a certain term right here, but first I want to be sure you understand that I am not speaking of three persons of the Godhead as a trinity minded person might be prone to do, for we know that God is one. Now here is my point. It is the three personages involved in verse 16. First I want you to notice that it is the Lord Himself, the God-man, our Lord and Savior that gives the shout. That is to wake us up to scriptural reality. But the voice of the archangel speaks of another being. God has followed a pattern of having certain great events announced by the voice of an archangel. Gabriel announced the birth of John to Zecharias, and how he would fulfill his part of Malachi 4:5-6. He also announced to Joseph how the birth of Jesus would fulfill Isaiah 7:14, and announced to Mary concerning the birth of Jesus and of John, and so forth, but my point is, there is a phase two of the total event commonly referred to as the rapture, and that pertains to something that is to be announced during an interval of time between the shout and the last trump. In the first advent setting, neither John, nor Jesus came on the scene without it first being announced by the angel of the Lord. But who was the announcement to? Not to the world; but only to those that would be directly involved in the event. I hope you are getting this, for this lets me know that there is to be something announced pertaining to this event prior to its occurrence, and it will only be heard by those who are to particpate. The drunks in the local tavern will not hear it, and neither will the tares that my be sitting among the saints, but if that same Spirit dwell in you that dwelleth in Jesus Christ, you, if you are still alive at that time, will hear it, for it will be something pertaining to the total event that you will need to know. But now we come to the third phase, if it may be properly referred to like that. This is a little hard to express in a way that will give a clear picture, because this trump of God is not referring to the God-man Jesus. It is referring to the great eternal Spirit. For He is the one that has the last word in every event. Throughout the Old Testament you will find the trumpet associated with the voice of Jehovah. Maybe I can use a little illustration that will help. In the old U.S. Cavalry, then the commander had the trumpeter blow the charge, every last one of those cavalrymen knew exactly what to do, and that was their signal to commence. Likewise, this verse 16, will have its fulfillment in the same manner. How did those cavalrymen know what to do when they heard that trumpet blow? You say, Why, they had been taught what it meant. Al right we have the same situation here. The shout awakens an element of people spiritually, the voice gets them ready, and the trumpet turns it all loose. It is by the authority of the great eternal Spirit that the trumpeter is being held from blowing the charge, and He is the only one that can give the signal, or word of authority to blow the trumpet. Therefore Brothers & Sisters, it is not the shout that the dead in Christ will hear, and it is not the voice of the archangel that they will hear; all of this is for those who are still alive when time for this event corresponds with God’s perfect time table. But Praise God! When that trumpet sounds it’s blast, it will be heard around this world, and saints from all ages will come forth out of the ground. Hallelujah!! There is not one thing that any preacher can do to change the present physical state of the dead man. Furthermore, the dead do not have to worry or even think about when the rapture is going to take place. He does not have to lay there wondering, How am i going to have faith enough to get up out of this grave? No, He has been laid to rest, having the seal, the security, and the promise, that the same Spirit which raised up Jesus Christ will also raise him up when the time comes. That is why the Bible tells us that the Holy Ghost is our rest. He is the promise that fulfills all promises. Therefore those who hear the shout and the voice of instructions pertaining to that cherished event will be those who are still living, having the Spirit dwelling in them.

WE SHALL ALL BE CHANGED

Let us go to 1 Corinthians 15:51 now, where we find Paul dealing, not with the rapture, but with the resurrection of the dead. He says nothing whatsoever about a shout, nor does he mention anything about the voice of the archangel, for he is dealing strictly with the part that brings the dead back to life, the resurrection. Notice, “Behold, I show you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed.” Right here is where some people stop, for they go back and get the scripture where Paul, this same apostle, said to the Hebrews, in dealing with another subject, “And as it is appointed unto man once to die, but after this the judgment,” and they will say, The Bible says we are all to die. They never bother to get the setting; they only take the words that were spoken. But when you stop to realize that Paul was dealing with the penalty for man’s sin in the garden of Eden, then you realize that after the death sentence was imputed to mankind, that has been the lot of every generation since then. But when you go into 1 Cor. 15:51-58, Paul is dealing with a time when God is again going to change the trend of things, a time when death will cease to rule over mankind. He is talking about a day when ( Picture: The Modern Councils of Churches That Claim to speak for millions of Protestants) death is going to be swallowed up in victory. He says, I am going to show you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed. He just puts the living saints, and the dead saints all together and says, We shall all be changed, and Praise God! We surely will. Now notice this next verse. He skips the shout, and the voice of the archangel, and goes directly to the sounding of the trumpet. ” In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” He doesn’t bother to mention the shout, nor the voice of the archangel here, because he is dealing strictly with the resurrection of the dead, but you rest assured, that when that trump sounds for the change it will be both for the living and the dead saints. Revelation of the word of God comes when the Holy Spirit helps us put one scripture with another scripture until a complete picture is formed of the thing we are looking at. That is why we have no right to expect every little detail of any event to be covered in any one place in the scriptures. But Paul is the one that had the revelation of the resurrection, and of the rapture, and therefore we can put complete confidence in what he had to say about it. Please remember though, that the last trump he mentions here has nothing whatsoever to do with the seven judgment trumpets sounded to the nation of Israel, beginning in Revelation 8:7, to vindicate the ministeries of God’s two witnesses to them.

INCORRUPTIBLE AND IMMORTAL

Let us yet look at the remaining verses of 1 Cor. chapter 15, and notice what Paul says in connection with the trump he is dealing with. Verse 53, he is explaining the change, so notice. “For this corruptible ( the dead) must put on in corruption and this mortal (That is those who are still living but have a death sentence hanging over them.) must put on immortality.” Immortality means that the death sentence has been removed and those that are left alive shall never die. 54 “So when this corruptible shall have put on encryption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall it be brought to pass this saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.” Praise God! Death is swallowed up in victory. For these, death will have no more hold, but death is not completely out of the picture, for there are yet many tribulation saints to be martyred in that dark hour of Antichrist rule upon earth. Nevertheless, for those that are changed according to the scriptures we have just read, death definitely is out of the picture. Therefore Paul went on to say, “O death, where is thy sting: O grave, where is thy victory? The stings of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Saints: There is total victory up ahead, so press on. Keep a strong faith in Him who is able to perform all that He has promised to them that love Him and follow His word. When the change is completed there yet remains the catching up, to meet the Lord Jesus in the air, to ever be with Him, and Paul says, that we should comfort one another with these words. That simply means that we should remind and exhort one another with the words of the believers hope that lies just ahead of where we are today.

DO NOT BE IGNORANT

Let us go back to 1 Thess. chapter 5, where Paul goes ahead saying, “But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. (Naturally he is speaking of years and months and anything that would give anyone any reason to set a date for this blessed event to take place.) For yourselves know perfectly that they day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night,” To some this might sound like a contradiction to our remarks about the previous verses, but to whom will He come as a thief in the night? Certainly not to those who are scripturally watching for His return. It is the world in general that He will come like that. As for those who are awaiting His return, certainly some of them shall be asleep, taking their night of rest, for when it is daytime on this side of the globe, it is night time on the other side. That is the reason He said there would be two in the field, one would be taken and the other left. It would be daytime in their part of the world. But then, He went on to say that there would be two in the bed, one would be taken, and the other left. They would be on the night side of the globe. But that is not what Paul is referring to here. He is speaking of a time when the people of the world are so taken up with worldly concern, that they will not even know what is happening until the wrath of God is upon them. Let’s let Paul speak to us now. Notice verse 3. “For when they ( Who? People of the world system.) shall say, Peace and safety; then cometh sudden destruction upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.” The world has never yet come to the place where they could say, Now we will have peace and safety. They have tried, and they are still trying to get a world peace agreement signed, so they can sit back and say, Well now, for the first time in the history of mankind we do not have to be worried about war. We finally have peace and safety throughout the whole world. They will have such a peace agreement signed, but do you know what scripture that will fulfill? Daniel 9:26, when the peace agreement is signed, with the Antichrist overseeing it, and controlling it. How long will it last? Three and one half years, and then cometh the great tribulation upon those that are left here after the rapture takes place. We will say more about that when we get into 2 Thess., where Paul actually speaks of this man of sin, the Antichrist, that shall be revealed. We have had our U.N. Charter, and ever since the miserable thing was signed, we have had more bloodshed and turmoil then whole world over, so it did not produce a condition of peace and safety. Neither did the European Peace Pact, the League of Nations, nor any other effort, but they were all forerunners of the one that will seem to secure a peace and safety condition for the world, but Paul says, When this condition finally does exist; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child. What woman is there among you that can predict the exact time that your travail pains will start, when your time for delivery is drawing nigh? In this case you would be looking for them, but usually when the first one hits, it startles you, so that is what Paul used to exemplify the suddenness, or sureness of the (the Contender, Bro Turners picture and comments)worlds pain of travail. Having to depend upon the translators choice of words, at times, is a little unhandy, but we are sure that Paul’s revelation was consistent, and in line with all other scriptures, so we must make the application according to the total picture instead of just one verse that might sound like sudden destruction would be immediately following such a peace pact. That is why Paul started out by saying, Brethren, I would not have you to be ignorant. He made sure that they had every opportunity to understand what the Spirit of God had revealed unto him. Therefore in verse 4, of chapter 5, he could say, “But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. No, it will not slip up on a rev elated child of God, for they will be watching the signs that forerun what the Lord will do, and when the rapture takes place, they will have made themselves ready to meet their Lord; therefore they will not even be here on the earth just prior to that destruction. They will be with their Lord in glory. Therefore I say to you here in Faith Assembly, Let your mind rest at ease in the scriptures, and avoid this condition of spiritual darkness that is upon so many church going people of the world. They take what Paul said about the rapture, and lay it alongside what John said about a great multitude that overcame the beast, and so forth, and they become completely confused. You can hear them talk, and pray, and they do not know if the bride will have to go through the tribulation or not. They do not know if the rapture could take place tonight or not and they do not know if the battle of Armegeddon is the same as the battle of Ezekiel 38 or 39, or not. That is why I have been preaching on this Ezekiel conflict, and that is why I have said, You, as church, are not going to leave here in the rapture until you have seen Ezekiel 38 or 39 fulfilled first. It is a Middle East setting, but there will be far reaching effects that may very well drastically change our lifestyle. Nevertheless when it is over, Bride, you can know that the coming of Jesus the bridegroom, is close at hand. But not before then. Hallelujah! Brother, that war will let us know that the word of God is being fulfilled according to prophecies that have laid right there in the scripture through the ages. But only right here in this last age, has the true people of God been allowed to understand the significance in God’s total plan of redemption and restoration. Why are we privileged to know these things? Because we will be affected by them, and because we are children of the light. Why are we children of the light? Because we have been born again. Saints of other ages had no need to know exactly what would precede the rapture of the church, but we do, because we are living in the age when not to know would leave us in darkness. 5 “Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day; we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.

WATCH AND BE SOBER. That word sober, is usually associated with, and is the complete opposite of being intoxicated with liquor. To be sober is to have your right mind, and able to think properly. Therefore when you give verse 6, it’s spiritual application, “Let us not sleep,” it simply means, Be spiritually awake to all that pertains to your hour of time. He says, ” Let us watch and be sober.” Well, you have to be awake in order to watch, and you have to be sober, (serious minded, level headed, spiritually alert) in order to know what to do about what you see.

BE SOBER

Do not ever think Paul might not have known what he was talking about. He was so sure of what he taught, he could preach it, and then just sit down, cross his arms, and defy any man to preach anything different. In the Galatian letter, he wrote. If we, or even an angel from heaven, preach anything different (any other gospel) let him be accursed. 7 “For they that sleep sleep in the night; (spiritual sleep in spiritual darkness) and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.” In Revelation 17:1-2, we find John speaking of a great whore with whom the Kings of the earth have committed fornication, (spiritually speaking) and the inhabitants of the earth have been drunk with the wine of her fornication. (Her doctrines) This is a prevailing condition in the world today; but the true children of God are not a part of that spiritual darkness. 8 “But let us, who are of the day, be sober, (Not partaking of any of those doctrines of spiritual darkness; putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that, whether we wake (remain alive until the end) or sleep, (die, and must be resurrected)we should live together with Him.” The world is appointed to wrath and destruction, because their hope is wrapped up in man’s wisdom, and his great worldly achievements, but we that are of the day, (walking in spiritual light) have our hope in the integrity of the word of God that promises salvation to all who believe and obey God in this present life upon earth. armor of godOut lot is to be with Him while He is pouring out His wrath upon those who have ignored Him, or blasphemed Him. In the world of religion, there are those who are so uninterested they are not even drunk on the false doctrines of religion; they just want to be left alone, to sleep on in their spiritual darkness. But there are others that completely intoxicated with their doctrines and church programs in their state of spiritual darkness, and neither group has any idea at all as to whether the coming of Jesus is close at hand or not, from the standpoint of the scriptures. They have no spiritual armor whatsoever, but we are exhorted to put on the whole armor of God, keep awake, be sober, love one another, and comfort one another with the words of our hope of salvation, knowing that He who has called us into this glorious light, will perform all of His good pleasure on our behalf. We will not worry about our dead brothers and sisters who have died in the faith, for God will bring them with Him, and rejoin them to their resurrected bodies before anyone is caught up to be with the Lord. What a blessed hope.

WHY THE VOICE?

After Paul had no doubt received a reply to his first letter to the church at Thessalonica, it seems that he felt compelled to write them another letter in which he would go into more details, clarifying this subject of the resurrection and translation of the saints, and he refers to that event as, our gathering together unto Him. We are in 2 Thess, and we will begin with verse 1. “Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.” Before commenting on these two verses, let me review a little of what we have already read from 1 Thess. 4:16, especially about the voice of the archangel. I consider it very important to our understanding these scriptures, to realize that there will be some saints alive at the end of this age, that will have something communicated to them by the voice of an angel of the Lord. I do not want to say very much about the shout, for we already have too many ideas floating around as to what the shouts consist of. But this voice of the archangel is something that carnal man cannot tamper with, nor duplicate. This voice is going to declare something to those living saints that will be partakers of the rapture. I mentioned this earlier, but now I want to explain exactly what I meant. The scriptures themselves declare that certain events will take place, even to the point of telling why, and in some instances even setting an order for them to occur, as in our text. But now, listen to me for a few minutes, and I will believe you will see something here. Just suppose that Elizabeth, after being barren for so many years, had suddenly began to feel a change in her body, without having first been told what to expect. She was an old woman, well past the age of childbearing; so what do you suppose she would have thought was wrong with her, when she began to feel that strangeness in her body, after conceiving seed that would actually fulfill scripture? I can just hear her crying to Zecharias, Honey, there is something wrong with me. Furthermore Zecharias never would have been struck dumb. He would have kept his voice, and just wondered what was wrong with his wife, but no. An angel had appeared to him sometime before that, saying, “Fear not, Zecharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elizabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink, and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before Him, in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” Brothers and sisters: I want you to know, that Malachi 4:5-6, had been laying right there in their scriptures for four hundred years, and the people of Israel looked for this Elijah that was to come, just like grace age Christians have looked for the rapture, but if that angel had not appeared to Zecharias and informed him of what was taking place, would he have known: Would he have known what to name his son? Would they have known what purpose of God was to be fulfilled through their son’s life, if the angel had not communicated that information to Zecharias: Of course not. It was necessary for God to inform those who would be directly involved in the fulfillment of those scriptures, of the part that was not recorded in the written word. It was the same with Joseph and Mary, when time came for the Messiah to be born. The event was prophesied in the scriptures. Isaiah 7:14, “Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bare a son, and shall call his name Immanuel, or Emmanuel.” In Isaiah 9:6, For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” it goes on to speak of Him sitting upon the throne of His father, David, and so forth, and all Israel was aware of these scriptures, and they looked for their Messiah, but do you think that young virgin girl would have known what was happening to her when she began to feel the change in her body, knowing that she had never been informed ahead of time? You know very well, that she would not have known what was wrong with her. The scriptures that give the setting for such an event had been right there for over seven hundred years, but no one knew what generation that virgin would live in. Only God Himself knew what young virgin of the nation of Israel would bare a son that would one day be their Messiah. God had the young lady picked out, and no one need know anything in order for the Holy Ghost to overshadow her and cause a supernatural conception. But just suppose it had been done without first informing her: She was already engaged to a man named Joseph, she knew she was a virgin, and Joseph believed she was, so just imagine what great conflict of emotions the young lady would have experienced, if one day she began to feel the life of a little baby within her. Surely you do not think that she would have suddenly figured out that she must be the virgin Isaiah spoke of. I believe you can see why it was necessary for God to send His angel to communicate with her in this matter. It enabled her to look upon everything that would happen, knowing that God was fulfilling His word spoken by His prophets of old.

MARY HEARS FROM GOD

Notice, in Luke 2:26-35, what Gabriel actually said to Mary. “And in the sixth month (that was the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy) the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the House of David; and the virgin;s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this would be. (He still had not given her the main message, therefore she wondered why anyone would be speaking to her in this manner) and the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God. (Picture: stand ye still and see the salvation of the Lord, man facing cross) And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of His father David; and He shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of His kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” The angel went ahead and told Mary about her cousin Elizabeth, being with child also, and then said, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” Then Mary answered him, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord: be it unto me according to thy word.” That angel of the Lord not only told Mary that she was going to conceive; he told her how she would conceive, and also that she would bare forth a man child, and even told her what to name him, and capped it off by telling her that He would be king, and that His kingdom would be forever. Mary’s only question was a natural one that anyone would have asked, “How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?” But when she received an answer to that question, she immediately submitted to everything that had been presented to her.

THE ANGEL APPEARS TO JOSEPH

What the angel told Mary did not help Joseph any though, for when he discovered that she was with child, he determined that he should just quietly break their marriage agreement, and fade out of the picture, and do it in such a way as not to publicly embarrass her; therefore it was necessary for God to send His angel messenger to him also; in order for him to be a willing participant in this plan, for in the natural genealogy he would be looked upon as the father of this child Mary was carrying. We will not read that scripture, but you may want to read it later, how the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream saying, “Fear not t take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” (Matt. 1:18-25) Alight, the instruments through which this great event would unfold have been informed, therefore they will not have to guess about anything that they should do. After the angel appeared to Joseph, he immediately did according to the word of the Lord, taking Mary to be his wife, but withholding himself from her until after the birth of this child. Then when the child was born, wrapped in swaddling clothes, and placed in a manger, what did God do to make his birth known? Out there on the countryside were shepherds keeping watch over their flock at night, when suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared to them, with the glory of the Lord all around them, and they were afraid. But the angel said to them, “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the baby wrapped in swaddling clothes lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host Praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” When the angels were gone, those shepherds went immediately to verify what they had heard, and when they found that it was all true they broadcast the news abroad, and caused many people to ponder in their hearts, just exactly what all that meant. Nevertheless the announcement was made that the Savior was born, so all that heard of it had their opportunity to know what was transpiring, and therefore did not need to be unaware of what was happening 30 years later, when Jesus came to John to be baptized of him.

OUR GATHERING TOGETHER

Brothers and sisters: I hope this helps you to understand why I say that they shout, and the voice of the archangel, as pertaining to the time of the rapture, is for the living saints at that time. The shout and the voice will get all the living saints ready for what will take place when the trump of God sounds to set the resurrection and the translation in motion. Paul had taught this to the Thessalonian church, and admonished them to comfort one another with those words, but something had been misunderstood somewhere along the line, and there was a feeling of unrest among those saints because of it, therefore in his second letter to them, Paul attempts to put their mind at ease. So now, we will get back to 2 Thess. 2:1, where we will begin reading, to see how Paul ties the resurrection, and the rapture to world condition. This lets us see that you cannot take this event called the rapture of the church, and apply it just anywhere, and at any time you please, no more than they could with the first advent of Christ, for the great eternal spirit hold those things sovereignly in His own power. Now notice verse 1,” Now we beseech you brethren, (He is not talking to the world, he is talking to believers and the word beseech did not convey the thought, listen if you want to. it strictly meant, you pay attention to what I am going to say.) by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him, ( the rapture) That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.” To be shaken in mind is to be disoriented, confused, full of doubts and fears, and unable to let your mind rest upon the truth of God’s word. Throughout the various realms of denominational religion one can find hundreds of opinions both in books and verbal statements, concerning the resurrection of the dead, and the rapture of the church. Some have the church raptured before the great tribulation, and others have her going through the tribulation. Therefore a hungry soul, without a genuine revelation on this event, could not find much rest in their mind. God wants our mind to be at ease, but most of us have been brought up through these various systems, and until we receive a genuine revelation about something, our mind is still subject to many of our traditional thoughts, and many times they bring on a state of confusion, and cause us to be unnecessarily troubled. That caused Paul to say, Do not allow this condition, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us. What exactly was he referring to? Simply this, no matter what you see or hear that supposedly comes from the realm of the Holy Spirit, if it does not line up with a true revelation from the word of God, do not allow that spirit to trouble you. No matter what word someone may have for you, if it does not follow continuity with the scriptures, do not allow yourself to become anxious nor troubled, not even by a letter from us. In other words, just because I wrote you that first letter, giving you the order in which the resurrection and rapture would take place, don’t you get all shook up, and sell your property, and go off someplace waiting for it to happen. (Various groups have been doing that, you know). That is not Paul’s words, but that is what he was getting at, for these forewarning spirits will always run ahead of the Spirit of God, and they can only succeed among people that do believe in the working of the Holy Spirit, but are without true revelation of God’s word. many people are claiming to have the Holy Ghost in this Laodicean age, but the very fact that so few of them are ever led into a revelation of the word of God proves in itself that their claim is not vindicated by the very spirit they claim to have. For as we have pointed out, over and over again and again, Jesus said, When He comes, He will guide you into ALL TRUTH. But Paul is writing to true saints that truly do have the Holy Ghost; therefore he knew that all they needed, was to have the truth presented to them, and that would settle it, so he went on, saying, “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day ( the day of our gathering together unto Jesus Christ, the rapture) shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.”

THE FALLING AWAY

Evangelists for the last fifty or sixty years have used the falling away part of verse 3, trying to scare people into joining their churches, and some of them could literally make the hair stand up on your arms, as they would paint their picture of a great falling away from Bible precepts, and in many ways, you would have to agree that in the overall scope of world religion, convictions have been slipping away from people for most of those years. But what Paul was talking about goes much deeper than that. He was referring to the kind of falling away that has been taking place among the people who were supposedly restored to the word of God by the message of the prophet to this age. Falling away from revealed truth presents a much more serious situation than just falling away from traditional religion, even if it is the same spirit behind both. We will see in verses 10 & 11, of this chapter, how God deals with people who have no love for the truth, But right now we want to lay our emphasis upon the fact that the rapture of the church is definitely tied to a world condition that must materialize first. There must be first a great falling away from Godly principles and convictions that have been founded upon the truth, and we are seeing that as never before. But then, there must be revealed the man of sin, the son of perdition. ( The Antichrist) Of course we already know what office he will come from, but we do not yet know if the present pope of the Roman Catholic church is the individual man that will fulfill that Antichrist role, or whether he is the one or not, we do know assuredly that he has been busy laying the groundwork for what is soon to materialize. The whole world is seeking peace, and we know there is not going to be any true world peace before Jesus Christ sits upon His throne in the Millennium, but this Antichrist person whoever he turns out to be, will help negotiate something that will pass off as a great world peace agreement, and by then the true bride of Christ will know who he is; he will be revealed to her. Therefore as this apostate condition prevails more and more in the overall scope of religion, the little bride of Christ will have her spiritual eyes and ears open, and she will know that the time of her departure is getting closer and closer. The world will not see it, because they are children of the night, but those who are children of the day will know what is about to take place. Does that mean that Ezekiel 38 and 39 might not hit until after the rapture? No, of course not. Do not allow these great peace overtures to lull you into a false sense of security; for that war of Ezekiel 38 and 39, must still be fought before this week of Daniel starts, in order for the time tables allotted to both to work out properly, God will not have Israelis burning weapons from that Ezekiel conflict, over in the Millennium, and Ezekiel 39:9, lets us know that they will be years baring up all those weapons that are left behind. We also know that the week of Daniel starts when the Antichrist peace agreement is signed, and seven years later, Jesus and His saints will be back on earth setting everything in order for the Millennium. Knowing the order of all these things that are yet to come is what keeps the born again children of God on a true course while the world is going berserk.

THE GREAT FALLING AWAY

I cannot help but think back, how 20 or 30 years ago the church world in general still had some genuine Bible convictions and kept their moral standards up, and how they have let every kind of compromising, devil designed social program move in and replace them. The most effective tool the devil has used to accomplish this, has been the gospel singing groups of the past two decades. Most of them are no more living for God than a jack rabbit, but this generation loves entertainment, and they will sit there and listen to whatever comes along. They do not want to be classified with the hippy rock bunch out there, but they will accept that same beat, just as long as it has a few words to it that can be identified with the Bible. Those singers will get up there and swing and sway to that Satanic beat, and sing and talk about how they love Jesus. If they really loved Jesus, they would leave that junk alone. I certainly do not want to hear it: it does not entertain me one bit whatsoever. Saints: Just stop for a moment and realize where that beat came from. It certainly did not originate in the church, but the so called churches have accepted it, and thrown their doors wide open to whatever follows it in. You could take that same rhythm down here to these disco dance halls, and they would twist, jump around, and do what they do just as well to these so called gospel songs as they do to the others. The only difference is the words. You consider that along with everything else that is being done in the ranks of religion, and you will have to agree that the falling away is almost accomplished. These deteriorating spirits among church people are just like a bunch of maggots in an old dead carcass; they just keep eating away. Social programs, politics, and entertainment take up their time, and the word of God has no real place. Perverts have moved in and forced themselves into leadership positions, and a general trend of immortality and spiritual decay is dominating churches that formerly stood for Bible principles; therefore we would have to say that the falling away is upon us. Every area of life is affected by it, spiritually, morality, politics, social structures, economy and everything is affected by this falling away that precedes the Antichrist and the rapture. Women are demanding equal rights, not only in business and labor circles, but also in the ministry of the gospel of Christ, or maybe we should just say, in the churches, for they know nothing of the true gospel, or they would not be demanding equality in the ministry. But nevertheless, in spite of all that is going on in the world, we are admonished to comfort one another with these words that Paul has spoken. Our comfort and assurance comes from knowing that God is still in control, and that He provides for His own, no matter what the world may do. We are not appointed to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, and we are not to be deceived, because we know the truth. We will not expect the rapture to take place before its time, for we know what must precede it. That is how we properly watch for it; not expecting it to take place at any moment, but watching those things that lead right up to it. On the heels of this great falling away, Paul said, that man of sin would be revealed, this son of perdition who is also know as the false prophet.

FROM PEACE TO TERROR

Let us go on now into verse 4, and listen to Paul tell what he will do (this man of sin). “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.” How he is not going to act like that at first, This is what he will be like once Satan has anointed him to fulfill his 3 1/2 year reign of bloodshed and terror. Before that hour arrives though, he will be a peace loving, hand shaking, baby kissing pope, seemingly doing everything possible to further the cause of world peace. That is how he gains the confidence of world leadership, and stands in a place to be chosen by them to oversee their great peace plan. Then after 3 1/2 years of overseeing this peace covenant, Satan anoints him to fulfill what Paul was describing here. That is when he will break the peace covenant, move into the temple of God in Jerusalem, kick the Jews our, and in every way possible project himself to be God. He will blaspheme and oppose everything, and everyone that in any way seems to be Godlike. That is when Jewish believers in God, and foolish virgins from the grace age will begin to be slaughtered because of their faith. The time of the great tribulation will be in effect, and all that Daniel and John wrote about, concerning that hour of time, will follow. It was not necessary for Paul to see everything that would transpire in connection with the falling away he mentioned, and the Antichrist that would follow. What he wrote to those Thessalonian believers was all they needed to know, for they would not be involved in any of the actual events that they were being told about, except the resurrection itself, and being caught up to be with the Lord forever. On the other hand, those of t his age who will be alive to witness the various events of the end time, needed to have more information than what Paul wrote. That is where Daniel and Revelation, comes into the picture. Neither one of them take anything from what Paul wrote; they just fill in the details. Now some will say, But, what about the temple? There is no temple in Jerusalem. Brother: Listen to me. Something is going to take place over there, that will give those Jews their temple spot, and I assure you this, When they get it, it will not be long before that temple is built and completed. It will not upset the scriptures if they are building that temple during the first half of the week of Daniel, but you can believe this, they will be offering sacrifice upon that altar long before the temple itself is built. You can confirm that, by reading the 3rd chapter of Ezra, and see what they did back then, before they even laid the foundation for the temple. They first established their form of ancient worship of Jehovah, and then they went to work building the temple. But let us get back to Paul’s letter. He says in verse 5, “Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? ( This proves that he had taught them concerning these things, but somehow it had just not broke through to them.) And now ye know what withholdeth that he ( the Antichrist) might be revealed in his time.” In our language of today one would just say, And you know that it is the Holy Spirit that is holding him back until his appointed time. “For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.” This mystery of iniquity, refers to the spirit of Antichrist, and not to the literal man himself. Even in 54 A.D. Paul could see that the spirit of Antichrist was already at work. Then by 96 A.D. when John wrote the book of Revelation, Satan had already sent out minor agents, minor Antichrists to harass the church, but none of that pertains to this MAN of sin that Paul is writing about here. Of course the last part of that verse refers to the Holy Ghost,, for He is the one that will hinder, or prevent this man of sin from coming on the scene ahead of his appointed time, and when his hour does arrive, it will be the Holy Ghost that withdraws His holding power and lets him make his move. The Holy Ghost have been among the Gentiles for over 1900 years now, convicting and wooing them to salvation, through our Lord Jesus Christ, but there will come an hour when God has determined that His Spirit should no longer deal with Gentiles in this way. That is when the Holy Ghost will cease to hold back the spirit of Antichrist; therefore the man of sin will then be free to move upon the scene, and when he does, the true church will know him, he will be revealed. Time and conditions has produced his office; we know where he will come from, but as I ALREADY SAID, We do not know for sure if the man who presently hold that office is the man that will fulfill the role of this man of sin. Daniel 7 and 8 lets us know beyond any shadow of doubt that his office is established in and through the Roman Catholic church; the fourth beast system upon earth has produced that. We can say also, His office has been established gradually over a period of many years of time, but when the man himself is revealed, that will not be a slow gradual process. World conditions, and the demand upon him will allow him to step right into his end time role as the man of sin, this son of perdition, the Antichrist that is to come. This world is right on the brink of another terrible conflict, one that will have universal repercussions, and this time it will not be the United Nations that establishes a peace plan; it will be the pope of the Roman Catholic church, and if this present pope is still in office at that time, then it is he, that will fulfill this diabolical plan of Satan.

COULD POPE PAUL II BE THE MAN?

Let me just say a few words about this present pope. in the short time he has been in office, he (picture of man with black hat and the choice between Life and Death) has traveled more miles that any of his predecessors, making speeches to great multitudes of people. He has a profound way of speech. It seems that he is just able to melt the hearts of those who hear him. Furthermore, coming from Poland, he knows how to deal with, and co-exit with communism, and that is a necessary characteristic, in this age when the spirit of communism is so widespread. He makes speeches that just leave politicians and communist leaders standing in awe. Therefore all we need right now is another world conflict, and I can guarantee you, that if this present pope is still alive, and in good health, (able to travel about) his unusual personality, and his ability to get things done will project him right into the role as a world peacemaker, to fulfill the scriptures. World leaders will not be looking for a man who will point them to the Bible. Oh, no. They will be looking for one that will promise them more dollars, no more war, better security worldwide, and a brighter future for their families. It will all have a religious front, but there will be nothing spiritual about it. Now I realize some will say, Now Bro. Jackson: That all seems a little far-fetched, and to some, I am sure it will, but to those who are alert to the reality of what mass destruction could be wrought upon the old world, if nuclear weapons should begin to be turned loose, I am sure they realize the seriousness of what I am saying. I say, On such a brink of disaster, world leaders will rush to the negotiating table, and be more than ready to sign a peace covenant that will fulfill Daniel 9:27. Therefore the world is going to need a peacemaker, a negotiator, a mediator, and Satan will have certain man waiting and ready to step into his role, so that brings us back to verse 8, in the 2nd chapter of 2 Thess. “And then shall that Wicked be revealed, (this Man of sin) whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming.” This of course, speaks of how the Lord will deal with this wicked one when He returns to earth with His saints to set up the Millennial reign, but that will not take place until the end of seven years that have been allotted to the Antichrist. In other words, this is when Christ comes back to earth to rule and reign, and not when He comes to rapture His saints in the beginning of this seven year period of time.

SELF STYLED HOLY PEOPLE

According to Revelation, chapter 19, all the armies of heaven will be with Jesus, when He comes back to earth to fight against this man of sin and all of earth’s corruption, and this time He will not come as a thief in the night to them. He will come in power and glory, taking vengeance upon all that is ungodly. When he comes to rapture His church, He will come as a thief in the night as far as the world is concerned, for they will not know what is happening, but when He comes back, seven years later, every eye will behold Him for He will be coming back in wrath. Brother I want you to know though, the last 3 1/2 years of that 7 years is going to be hell on earth, for that old Antichrist with all his evil forces will be stalking the earth with a death decree against all Gentile virgins, and all Jewish saints, and they will butcher them like hogs at the slaughterhouse. During that time evil and ungodly men will desire to die, and death will will flee from them. According to the 9th chapter of Revelation, the bottomless pit is opened up, and every tormenting spirit held therein is loosed upon earth to torment ungodly mankind. They wanted their great hour of manmade peace, and God will let them have it, but this is what it will turn into, hell upon earth. They will desire to die, but God will not let them die until their cup of wrath is full, and then Jesus and His armies will descend from heaven and destroy them. Verse 9 tells how this man of sin makes his appearance, and lets us know why the world at large will receive him so graciously. Notice, “Even him whose coming is after the workings of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.” Naturally this is speaking of political power, and not of supernatural power, and it is a known fact, that by political maneuverings, the Catholic Church is always able to stay on top of every situation. If you do not think I am speaking the truth, just go back and read your history books, and you will find that through the ages of time, in every conflict, the Catholic church always manages to end up on the winning side, even if she has to change sides. That is how she has maintained control over so many people through the centuries of time since she came into prominence. Verse 10, goes ahead describing the tactics of the man of sin who gains his power through political wonders that are brought about by lying and deceiving, and so forth. And with all deceive ableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; ( He will not deceive the true body of Christ, but he will deceive all the rest.) because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: (or the lie) That they all might be damned who believe not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” It was necessary for God to send a prophet messenger to this age, to cry out against Antichrist systems, and point God’s true people back to His word. Otherwise we would still be sitting in our Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Pentecostal and whatever other denominational systems we were in. Furthermore we would be all wrapped up in this spirit of deceive ableness that has captured the multitudes. Where did it all start? It started when Rome put out her great plea for a united brotherhood. This ecumenical spirit was loosed upon mankind, and it is leading denominational religion right into the arms of old mother Rome. This Glossolalia, and Charismatic movement is leading it all right back to Rome, but it could not happen until after the had their opportunity to receive the love of the truth, and they rejected it. Therefore God Himself sends them strong delusion by certain manifestations which causes them to follow signs and wonders. He does it to bind them to that old religious system that the world looks upon as the church, so He can judge it all together when the times comes. All will be damned who believe not the truth, but have pleasure in unrighteousness. Now please do not allow yourself to think that it is only those who love to go to the beer joints that are unrighteous. God will have mercy on that person a lot sooner than He will a self righteous, self willed, self styled holy creature. This is the kind of holy people that condemned Jesus and sent Him to the cross. This is the kind of people that actually made up false charges against Him, and cried Crucify him! Crucify him! Then when Pilate would have released Him, they cried, Give us Barrabbas. Therefore they are already condemned in the eyes of God, and their judgment lies before them. As children of the day, we can see these things that are taking place throughout the world today, and we know they point to the soon coming of Jesus Christ. But we also know that His coming has to be in accordance with the word of God, therefore we are watching those world conditions that will lead right into it. Jesus said, When you see these things, then lookup, for your redemption draweth nigh. Brothers and sisters: I hope none of you think we say these things trying to get glory to ourselves, for all glory, honor and majesty belongs to Him who died for us and rose again, that we also might have hope of redemption. Praise His wonderful name! Hallelujah! Yes we can, and should watch for the rapture, but we should and must watch scripturally, knowing in our hearts that God will not bypass one single prophecy of the scriptures in order to hurry it up for us.

GREAT TRIBULATION FOR WHO?

What we are going to look at now will not affect those who truly do go in the rapture, but since there is still so much speculation about the great tribulation, what it is, when will it be, who will go through it, and what is the purpose for it, along with two or three dozen other questions, I think it would be good just to take a little time right here, and deal with it. I heard a radio preacher trying to teach on it the other day, and he was having the whole week of Daniel as the great tribulation, and saying, But don’t worry, the saints will be raptured before that starts. Well, in reality he had one point correct; the saints will be raptured before the great tribulation starts, but not necessarily before the week of Daniel starts, for the signing of the peace covenant that also includes the nation of Israel is what will mark the beginning of the 7 year period of time known as the 70th week of Daniel. Therefore to give that whole week of time to the great tribulation, throws everything else out of its scriptural setting, so let us take a little time to examine this subject.

THAT CERTAIN PEACE COVENANT

This is definitely a teaching subject, so I am trusting the Lord to help me make everything clear and easy to understand, and above all else, scripturally established. First of all let me ask you this, Do you know where this great tribulation terminology originated? You do not find it in Daniel, where the events of it are first mentioned. Actually Jesus Himself was the first to make mention of it, in Matthew 24:21. It is a period of time associated only with the last half of the week of Daniel, when the Antichrist breaks the peace covenant with the nation of Israel. But first, there has to be such a covenant signed. The Roman pope may sign treaties with ever so many nations in the months and years ahead of us, but until the nation of Israel is included in one of them, please do not jump the gun, to start the week of Daniel. God Himself will start that week, for He is the one that keeps all prophetic time, and He knows exactly when to move men to fulfill His will, and when He moves upon the nations to sign that particular peace treaty, then we will have something precise to calculate remaining time by, for however long we are still here. In the meanwhile, we must calculate seasons by world events, especially in the Middle East. It is really a time for Christians to begin to be very wise. I just happened to catch a few minutes of the P.T.L.Club on TV the other day when Mr. Baker was interviewing people to build upon the rock kingdom, and I just thought to myself, yes, what you are saying is true, but you are looking at the whole thing through dollar signs; you are not taking heed to the words of Jesus. Do not ever forget that Jesus said, “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine and Doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock.” Was Jesus having any reference to money when He said that? You know perfectly well that He was not; He was talking about Godly character and a pure revelation. But He also said, “And everyone that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand.” That would be those who try to live a Christian life, but avoid the true teaching of the overall word of God. We are living in a day when people by the thousands, just follow anything that looks or sounds good to them, without even giving any thought as to whether it follows a pattern laid down by the Bible. The truth is, Most of them do not even know their way through the Bible, therefore they would not know how to test it by God’s word, yet they profess to be born again. That is a very commonly used terminology in our day, you know. Dear Brothers and Sisters: I hope you every one realize that none of us have anything to be proud about, for if the grace of God had not reached down and lifted us up, where do you suppose we would be today? I am thankful to the depths of my heart, for the grace that God has bestowed upon me.

DANIEL’S FOURTH BEAST

Let me get back to Matthew 24:21. “For then shall be GREAT TRIBULATION, (In every age, trials and tests have always been common, but none of them could ever be considered great tribulation in the sense that Jesus was speaking of here, for this is a certain specific period of time.) such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. (Notice this next verse.) And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” Now saints, we need to realize that even though these two verses did truly have a type setting fulfillment in 69-70 A.D., to the Jewish people, that still was not THE GREAT TRIBULATION: that was just a projection of the spirit of this one that is just up ahead. You that have not read our article titled,”THE ABOMINATION THAT MAKETH DESOLATE, might want to get that article and read what took place in Jerusalem, in 69 and 70 A.D. But when you do, just remember this, the great tribulation that is yet to come will be much, much worse than anything that happened back then. That is what Jesus said, It will be a time like there has never been before, and there shall never be another time like it, and verse 29, lets us know that what took place in 69 and 70 A.D. in Jerusalem, was not it. Notice, “Immediately (not 6 months, nor 2 years later, but immediately.)after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken? ( This did not take place in 70 A.D.) And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” This definitely is not referring to Jesus coming to rapture the saints, for that has already taken place. This speaks of when He comes back to earth, with His church, and all the armies of heaven, in power and great glory, to rule and reign for one thousand years, right about the end of the great tribulation period of time. Nevertheless the last half of that week of Daniel will be the worst time this old world has ever known. We have to go back to the 7th chapter of Daniel to pick up the symbolic language where this period of time is first spoken of. Let me say this also, Every scripture in the Bible, that speaks of this period of time is in perfect harmony one with the other; there is no confusion. Here, in this chapter, Daniel describes a dream he had, in which he saw 4 great beasts come up from the sea and go through their cycle, and the fourth was the most terrible and dreadful of all. He even saw that fourth beast go through judgment and his body destroyed. He sees himself inquiring of an angel as to what all this pertained to, and he wants to know especially about this fourth beast, so let us pick up in verse 19, and be aware of the fact that this fourth beast was the old Roman Empire. He says, “Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse (different) from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with is feet; (see verse 7 and 8) even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows.” He watched that fourth world kingdom go through its cycle of changes; then after it had devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet, it was finally brought to judgment and destroyed. Brothers and sisters, that covers a great span of time, but it is a picture of what the old Roman empire did in the Middle East and Western Europe. When it says in verse 23, that it shall devour the whole earth, you have to realize that it is referring to the old world, where these great empire stamped their influence, and ruled and reigned with such authority. The Roman empire never did rule, nor devour the Orients. It never did penetrate beyond the borders of India; therefore it is strictly a Middle East and Western Europe setting. The only reference to the eastern nations is in the 16th chapter of Revelation, in connection with the kings of the east being brought to the battle of Armageddon, which is definitely the last war that will ever be fought on this planet.

THE LITTLE HORN

Saints, we just have to assume that most of you already know a lot of those things from history and from other articles we have printed, for we could never justify the time, nor the space that it would take to fill in all the details leading up to where we are reading, here in Daniel 7. The beast had ten horns that were in his head, and there came up from among them a little horn, before whom three of the other horns fell. This little horn had eyes like a man, and a mouth that spake great things, and his look was more stout than his fellows. We know from church history, as well as from secular history, that this is speaking of the rise of the papal power as it came up through, or from the midst of those ten horns of Western Europe during (picture of the beast with the littlest horn looking like a man with a crown on his head)the Dark Ages, until it finally reached such a place of power in Europe, just before the breaking of the Reformation period, that it literally took control of heads of state, and stamped down their authority, and he proceeded to change times, and laws, and such like. Do you know that the whole western world today, observes solar time by a calendar that was designed by the Vatican? We call it Roman time, but actually, it is Roman time that has been revised by the Vatican, instead of the old Roman ceasers. This little horn works out to be the pope of the Roman Catholic Church, and that brings us to verse 21, which actually deals with the great tribulation. This verse could very well have a compound meaning, covering other periods of time, but its climax is in the last half of the 70th week of Daniel, for verse 22, shows that it continues until Jesus comes back to judgment. Notice now, “I beheld, and the same horn (that little horn) made war with the saints, and prevailed against them: (That is your Gentile foolish virgins and Jewish saints, that will be martyred during the great tribulation.) Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High: and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom,” Judgment is given to the bride of Christ, and she rules and reigns with Christ throughout the Millennium. As we continue reading, you will hear the angel explaining the 4th beast that was so terrible in Daniel’s vision. Verse 23, “Thus he said, The fourth beast SHALL BE the fourth kingdom upon the earth, (BABYLON, MEDIA, PERSIA, GREECE and then ROMAN; these are the 4 great world kingdoms that appeared as beasts in(picture of symbols of beast, ecclesiastical Babylon mystery) Daniel’s vision, and the Roman empire was the fourth.) which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.” The Roman empire went through many stages that made it different from the others, and finally, papal power gained the supremacy over the emperors, and that allowed that fourth kingdom to be ruled by what we now know as the Catholic church. But let us read some more scripture. Verse 24, And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: ( That is your ten kingdoms of Europe that made up the territory over which this Roman beast ruled.) and another shall rise after them; (the pope gains authority over political rulers.) and he shall subdue three kings.” The first ten horns on that fourth beast were political horns, ( horn speaks of power) and that is why that, even though it seems that this little horn that arises from their midst should make eleven horns on it, it really does not, for this little horn is ecclesiastical power, church rule. The Catholic Church took dominion over those kings of the old Roman empire. That is why this last horn that raised up from the midst of the others was so different from them; he was a religious power, ursuping religious authority. The apostle John in his vision, saw seven heads upon his fourth beast, and this papal head was what made up the seventh, for the seven heads were 7 forms of rulership over the Roman empire which was the fourth beast, that had ten horns. We will see how that 7th had was wounded, and how it was healed, a little later, but first we want to finish this scripture. Verse 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 unto his hand until a TIME ( one year) and TIMES (two more years) and the dividing of time.” (another 1/2 year) This is a great tribulation setting, and it is those tribulation saints that shall be given unto his hand for 3 1/2 years to be martyred because of their faith in God. The length of time in which this shall take place is spoken of in symbolic language, but the time itself is not symbolic; it is literally 3 1/2 years of time, in which this devil incarnated pope of Rome will rule, and actually sit in the Jewish temple showing himself as God. Naturally this 3 1/2 year period of time is not called great tribulation here, for Jesus is the first to refer to it as that, but from these scriptures, we get our first glimpse of the whole picture that is revealed through other scriptures. Just reading here we do not know whether these saints of the most High are Jewish or Gentile saints, but as we go into the book of Revelation, we see that it is both. Also, it is from other scriptures that we learn what this symbolic mention of times breaks down to be, for as we get over in Revelation, we find it mentioned as 42 months instead of in this way.

WHAT SHALL THE END BE?

Right now, let us go to Daniel 12:7 for another mention of this time element involved. This is dealing with another experience Daniel had, and the answer that was given him when he wanted to know the truth of it. “And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand unto heaven, and swear by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and a half time; and when he (This he, is that little horn that arose from the midst of the ten,) shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.” What things? You may wonder. Verse 1-6, speak of a time of great trouble such as never was before; it speaks of a resurrection, and of deliverance of all that have their names written in the book of life. So verse 7 answered the question of verse 6, How long shall it be to the end of these things? Daniel heard all of this, but that did not clear it up for him, so in verse 8, we hear him saying, “And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, What shall be the end of these things: And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.” These things were written in a symbolic language enough to keep the wicked from being able to pick up the book and read exactly what was going to take place, yet the children of God, living in the generation that would see these things take place, have been led by the Spirit of God, to understand what they mean. Yes, the wise will understand, but this wicked and ungodly generation of perverts and murderers, will not understand. They will go right on in their self willed way until the end, and get worse and worse every day they live. Any time you have a society of people that demand to do exactly what they want to do, you have nothing but hell on earth, and that is exactly what we have today. Any man or woman in their right mind, would not want to do any more than what they felt would be right, and proper in the sight of God. It is the same with God’s angels; they are so thankful, and they love God so much, they only want to do what pleases Him. That, my Friend, is true freedom. None of those people that are always demanding their freedom, will ever know what true freedom is, for they are slaves to demon spirits, and what they want to do, and all the time, they think they are gaining freedom to do exactly as they choose to do. Well, God is going to let mankind have the kind of leader that will turn all these spirits loose, and that is when men will seek to die, and death will flee from them. God will keep them alive to partake of the kind of life they have been fighting to achieve, one that will allow anyone to do anything they choose to do, any time, and any place.

1260 DAYS PLUS 75 DAYS EQUALS?

Brothers and sisters: We are living in an hour when professing Christians can find a form of religion somewhere that will suit their desired way of life, pacify their religious feelings, and give them their social standing in society, but there is not much wisdom in that kind of a life,and certainly no salvation. That is a life of deception, one that just lulls you to sleep, and God moves on off, and leaves you. True, wisdom is knowing how to look at the word of God through the inspiration and guidance of the Holy Ghost, and knowing what hour we are living in, just before the return of Jesus Christ. We do believe the word of God, and we are persuaded that when He comes, He will find some true saints that have made themselves ready to be ushered into the wedding. These are the wise ones that will understand the scriptures we are looking at in this message. So now, let us look at verse 11, which is a confirmation of 9:27, that speaks of the Antichrist breaking the peace covenant and this is when the great persecution of the Jews begins again. 11 “And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, ( the Jews will be driven out of their temple, and the old Antichrist will take control of it, and that will initiate the great tribulation period.) there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. “You will notice that there is an extra 30 days included there, beyond the 1260 days allotted to the great tribulation. That is not a mistake, and neither does it cause confusion. I am persuaded that at the end of 1260 days of the rule of the Antichrist, Jesus will come with His saints from heaven, and begin to pour out His wrath upon this earth, but that will not be finished in a few minutes of time, it will run into days, and that will account for extra days in verses 11 and 12. Notice verse 12, “Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.” That gives you another 45 days on top of the 30, which adds up to a total of 75 extra days between the end of the Antichrist’s allotted time, and the actual starting of the one thousand year reign of Christ upon earth. That 75 days will be the time elapsed during the wrath of God poured out upon ungodly mankind, then getting the planet back in order for the Millennial reign, and actually setting the Millennium in starting order. Jesus said, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken,” so we can see that everything is going to be terribly disrupted during that time, but when His wrath has accomplished it’s purpose, He will pull everything back into it’s intended order, and set about cleansing and sanctifying the defiled temple, getting it ready for the Millennium, for Christ Himself will rule from the temple in Jerusalem throughout the next one thousand years. We have already mentioned it, but if you will turn back to Daniel 9:27, with me, we will read that verse and see where he (the Antichrist) will confirm a covenant with many for 1 week, and in the midst of the week he will cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease, meaning, to break the covenant agreement, and start persecuting the Jews that have enraged him during the first 3 1/2 years of that week. 9:27 “And he shall confirm the covenant with many for 1 week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” Jesus Christ is the true Prince of Peace, and when He comes to earth to rule for one thousand years, it will be a rule of peace, and He will not have to get the nations to sign a peace agreement. He will establish peace by chaining up the old trouble maker. Satan. But this false peace maker will have to do it man’s way, but before he does, the scriptures will be fulfilled, 1 Thess.5:3, ” For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child, and they shall not escape. There has to first come a time when the world will feel at ease, and begin to say, Well, we finally have peace an safety. God will let them live under that false peace for 3 1/2 years, and then it will suddenly become hell upon the earth, as the bottomless pit is opened, and all those tormenting demons turned loose upon wicked mankind.

WOUNDED HEAD HEALED

I have said it many times before, and I do not mind saying it again, I believe the fulfillment of Ezekiel 38 and 39 is what will so shake the world that their leaders will rush to the peace negotiating table, sign a peace pact, and appoint the pope of the Roman Catholic church as the overseer of it. Since the signing of such an agreement is what actually starts that last week of Daniel, I look for this old world to get a terrible shaking. The scope of Ezekiel 38 and 39 will be a lot greater than a lot of people expect. People of the world are going to feel that we are on the brink of total annihilation. You talk about shuttle diplomacy, that old pope is really going to be busy.Then when the agreement is signed, the man of the world is going to lean back and say, This is wonderful. This is what we have needed for so long. We can build houses now, and not have to worry about them being blown all to pieces. We can send our children to college and not have to worry about them being called to the battlefield as soon as they are finished. No wonder Revelation 13:8 says, “They worshiped the dragon which gave power unto the beast.” Now we know that no same person would be likely to bow down and worship him through their systems of religion, not recognizing the spirit of the man. Now while we are here in chapter 13, let us read verse 3, which speaks of the wounding of one of the 7 heads of that old Roman beast, and of it’s healing, and how the world responded. “And I saw one of the heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.” When Daniel first saw that fourth beast it only had one head, but John later saw it with seven heads, and one of those heads was wounded unto death, but later healed. I will be brief, but maybe a few words of explanation will clear up any question you may have about these heads. As long as Rome was ruled by the ancient Ceasars (those of that royal family that passed the throne from one to the next in line) the fourth beast (Rome) had only ONE head. But NERO was the last one of that royal line of ceasars, and when he died there was no one to inherit the throne. From that point seven heads begin to develop on that old beast, and when the angel spoke to John, in Revelation 17, he told him that five were fallen. The seven heads were seven kings, and rulers of the Roman empire, after the death of Nero, and the five that were fallen, were the five good emperors that tried to re-establish another line of Caesars, another royal family) but never succeeded in doing so. Nevertheless each of them did succeed in establishing a form of political government that caused them to be looked upon as a political head upon the beast. They left the scene, and time passed, and Constantine was the next outstanding emperor that ever established any form of imperial rule that could be considered a head on that Roman beast. Other men sat upon that throne before Constantine, but he was the only one that could be considered head number 6, and when he passed off the scene, over 400 years rolled by before head number 7 appeared. His name was Charlemagne, and it was his form of imperial ruler ship that the popes began to exercise the authority of the papacy above. Charlemagne was the seventh head on that old beast, and the 8th head was an ecclesiastical head, and therefore did not put eight heads upon the beast, for only political heads were recognized as such. Therefore the beast continued to have only seven heads, but it was obvious that the eighth was in control. It was just a case of blending the seventh form of imperial rulership and ecclesiastical rulership together. Little by little the papacy took control of that seventh form of imperial government, and that is why the Bible says that the eighth is of the seventh. it was the wounding of that ecclesiastical head by the Reformation, that John saw, and he thought it should have been wounded to death, but along come eccumenicalism, and through the world council of churches, all the Protestant daughters have been led back to mama, ( Roman Catholicism) and in so doing, that deadly wound has been healed. The old pope is just about ready to resume his beastly rule. All he needs is that spirit of Satan that is to come up out of the bottomless pit, (Hell) enter into the man for the duration of his allotted time, (three and one half years of beastly rule in the last half of that week of Daniel) and then go into perdition. (Destruction)

CONDITIONS FULFILL BIBLE PROPHECY

Now some may ask, Why should such a peace loving man as the Roman Catholic pope in that hour, suddenly take on a beastly attitude, and conduct himself like a demon? I am convinced that during the first 3 1/2 years of that week of time, something will agitate him to the point where he can no longer contain his feelings, and I believe it will probably be the ministry of those two Jewish prophets that prophecy to the Jews for 3 1/2 years, and constantly warn them of what the pope is destined to do. In the eyes of the world, those two prophets will be nothing but troublemakers, stirring up trouble in a time of great peace, and do not forget who is overseeing the peace agreement. Why would he not be provoked to wrath by what they will be doing and saying there in Israel? They will be exposing everything, and everyone that had anything to do with that peace agreement, and the news media will be broadcasting it to the world. That is how the people of the nations will be able to to see their dead bodies lay in the street for 3 1/2 days without being burred. Television will broadcast it to the whole world, just like they have the incident in Beirut, Lebanon. The ministry of those two prophets is going to upset the whole social structure in Israel, and it will cause great feelings to swell up between the political Jews that agreed with the peace covenant, and the spiritual Jews that never have signed it. It will bring about a condition almost like the one that brought Titus and Jerusalem in 69 and 70 A.D. Jew against Jew, until it gets to the point where something has to be done about it. The old peace promoting man of sin will be forced to make his move, for 3 1/2 years of those two prophets is all he will be able to tolerate. That is when Satan will make his move. While the old pope is building up certain human feelings toward those two prophets that are causing so much disturbance, old Satan will take him over, and that is when the blood bath starts. He breaks the covenant, has the two prophets killed, refuses them entombment, and begins a widespread persecution of the Jews and anyone else that professes to believe in God. That is what is meant in Daniel, when it speaks of the overspreading of abominations. It is the ushering in of excessive hatred. In Daniel 12:7, it speaks of scattering the power of the holy people, so even that far back, it was prophesied that this satanic instrument would do something to scatter the children of Israel. What else could that be but Israel fleeing for her life in the dark tribulation hour? (Rev. 12:6) True saints know what he will do to gain the confidence of world leaders, and that is why Paul could say, That day of our gathering together unto Him ( Jesus Christ) shall not come except there first come a falling away, and that man of sin be revealed, that son of perdition, the Antichrist, false prophet, and false peace maker. He was not teaching that the church would go through the tribulation, he was just using the beginning of that peace agreement as a sign factor for believers. When you see these things taking place, Look up, for your redemption draweth nigh. He also told them that God has not appointed them to wrath, but to obtain salvation through Jesus Christ. The wrath he was speaking of, will be the great tribulation therefore somewhere about the time of the signing of that peace treaty, the living bride saints will be caught up to be with the heavenly bridegroom, Jesus Christ. That leaves on earth, the foolish virgins, and the Jewish saints, to face martyrdom at the hands of the Antichrist forces. These Jewish saints that will be martyred, are not the same ones that will receive the message of the two prophets, for that group are the ones that will flee into the wilderness to hide for 3 1/2 years. Daniel saw that little horn speaking great words against the most High, and said he would wear out the saints of the most High. Therefore those who cannot see the foolish virgins of Matthew 25:1013, as being saved, get in trouble trying to explain how the church can be raptured before the great tribulation, and yet have the Antichrist wear out the saints of the most High during that time. Then when they get to Revelation 7:14 and see that great multitude, some from every nation under heaven, that purged themselves through martyrdom during the tribulation; they just have to say, Well, we will let time itself reveal who they are. Brother: I thank God that I know already, for I would not rest with such uncertainty in my soul, Will I go through the tribulation, or will I not? Let me just say this, and we will bring this to a close. From every nation under heaven, there will be saints raptured to be with Jesus during that tribulation hour, and from those nations there will also be foolish virgins that will be martyred during that time, and also there will be some people left alive upon earth, good moral people from every nation under heaven that will pass into the Millennium to repopulate the earth. But we do not learn these things just drifting along nonchalantly without ever allowing the Holy Ghost to teach us, and neither can we make ourselves ready for the rapture just drifting along like that. Jesus Christ is coming back for a God fearing, truth loving, Bible studying, praying, Holy Ghost taught church, that has followed all the truth that was revealed in her hour, and that is why I say, young people; Do not get so wrapped up in material things, that you neglect your own soul. Go ahead and build houses, plant potatoes and prepare to live here another twenty or so years if that should be the will of God, but do not neglect to have your soul ready to meet your maker before the sun goes down tomorrow, it that should be His will instead. No, the rapture cannot come that quick, but He may call you as an individual, therefore be ready, regardless of the cost to your flesh. Watch for the rapture, but watch scripturally instead of traditionally. Do not allow yourselves to be sidetracked by signs and wonders, for God still has tare bundlers out there. They are speaking in tongues, praying for the sick, and supposedly doing God a great service, but they have no love of the truth; therefore God Himself is sending them strong delusion, that they might believe the devil’s lie and be damned.

Keep your eyes upon the Middle East, and especially upon the nation of Israel, for all the present signs are pointing toward Ezekiel 38 and 39, and the rapture will not be very far beyond the climax of that. May God bless you. Amen.

 

In Search of the Evidence

WE ARE LIVING IN A DAY WHEN THE TERM, “BORN AGAIN,” IS SO COMMONLY USED, THAT IT IS TAKEN VERY LIGHTLY AMONG MOST CIRCLES, YET TO BE SCRIPTURALLY BORN AGAIN, IS TO BE FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOST, AND THAT BRINGS UP ANOTHER CONTROVERSY. HOW CAN WE KNOW WHO IS, AND WHO IS NOT, AMONG THOSE THAT PROFESS TO BE? FURTHER STILL, HOW CAN WE KNOW BEYOND ANY SHADOW OF DOUBT THAT WE OURSELVES HAVE THE HOLY GHOST? DO YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE THE HOLY GHOST JUST BECAUSE YOU SPOKE IN TONGUES, OR BECAUSE SOMEONE ELSE TOLD YOU THAT YOU DID? ARE YOU ABLE TO LINE YOUR SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE UP WITH THE WORD OF GOD? WHAT IS YOUR MOTIVE, AND WHAT DO YOU HUNGER FOR? I JUST WANT TO PROVOKE YOUR THINKING FOR A MOMENT, FOR WE ARE GOING INTO THE SCRIPTURES AND ENDEAVOR TO ANSWER WHATEVER QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE ALONG THIS LINE, FROM GOD’S WORD. EVERY SINCERE PERSON OWES IT TO HIMSELF, OR HERSELF, TO BE ABSOLUTELY CONVINCED FROM THE SCRIPTURES WHETHER HE OR SHE HAS THE GENUINE HOLY GHOST, OR THE DEVIL’S COUNTERFEIT.


I RECEIVED A VERY SAD LETTER FROM A YOUNG MAN WHO SAYS THAT HE CAME AND TALKED TO ME ON THIS SUBJECT OVER TWO YEARS AGO. I VAGUELY REMEMBER IT AT THIS TIME. BUT HE TELLS ME HE HAS BEEN SEEKING THE HOLY GHOST ALL THIS TIME SINCE THEN, AND JUST CANNOT RECEIVE. OF COURSE HE IS SEEKING THE EXPERIENCE FROM THE UNITED PENTECOST CHURCH (U.P.C.) STANDPOINT OF SPEAKING IN TONGUES AS THE INITIAL EVIDENCE, AND HE IS REAL DISTURBED BECAUSE THAT HAS NOT HAPPENED. NOW HE FEELS THAT PERHAPS IT IS BECAUSE HE HAS LIVED SUCH A WICKED LIFE THAT GOD JUST DOES NOT LOVE HIM ENOUGH TO GIVE HIM HIS SPIRIT. HE TELLS ME ALL OF THESE THINGS, BUT HE ENDED UP ASKING ME, WHAT IS WRONG, BRO. JACKSON? WHY CAN I NOT RECEIVE THE HOLY GHOST?


I RECEIVED A LETTER FROM ANOTHER PERSON QUITE SOME TIME AGO THAT ALSO ASKED ME A QUESTION CONCERNING THE HOLY GHOST EXPERIENCE. THIS QUESTIONS WAS, BRO. JACKSON, IS IT TRUE THAT BRO. BRANHAM SAID, A PERSON COULD HAVE THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY GHOST AND STILL BE LOST AND GO TO HELL? NOW, BROTHERS AND SISTERS, WHEN PEOPLE ASK QUESTIONS LIKE THAT, YOU NEED SOMETHING MORE THAN MAN’S TRADITIONAL OPINIONS TO ANSWER THEM WITH. THEREFORE, I AM GLAD THAT THE WORD OF GOD SUPPLIES US WITH THOSE ANSWERS WHEN WE NEED THEM. WE KNOW HOW THE WORLD OF RELIGION GOT INTO SUCH A MESS OF CONFUSION: IT IS A RESULT OF MEN NEGLECTING THE WORD OF GOD; THEREFORE, THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY OUT OF SPIRITUAL CONFUSION, AND THAT IS TO GO BACK AND GET EVERYTHING IN LINE WITH THE SCRIPTURES. THAT IS WHAT WE WILL ENDEAVOR TO DO AS WE PRESENT THIS MESSAGE, SHOW WHERE EVERYTHING STANDS IN THE LIGHT OF GOD’S WORD.


TEXT: ST. JOHN 7:37-39


THIRSTING AND DRINKING


Let us open our Bibles to the 7th chapter of John, where he records something that Jesus spoke as He began to open up the subject, or idea of an individual receiving the Holy Ghost. Notice verse 37, “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” Saints, that word cry, does not mean that Jesus was standing there crying tears, it simply means that He screamed out,  “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, AS THE SCRIPTURE HATH SAID, (the Old Testament) out of his belly (or innermost being) shall flow rivers of living water.” We find verse 39, in parenthesis, explaining what Jesus meant in verses 37-38. “But this spake He of the Spirit, which they that BELIEVE ON HIM should receive; for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.” From those three verses we see two very important things. First Jesus give the Holy Ghost a water identity. Did you know that water is the most vital to your physical health and strength of the elements that make up our human body? You can live longer without food than you can without water, so this water identity of the Holy Ghost really stresses the absolute necessity of the Spirit of God in us in order for us to be spiritually alive. Then there comes the question, How do we receive the Spirit of God? (The Holy Ghost) That is the other main point in the statement Jesus made. We must believe on Him according to the scriptures; not according to man’s traditions. In the days that Jesus spoke those words, those that heard Him only had the Old Testament scrolls that spoke of a Messiah to come, a Savior, a Prince of Peace, and so forth, but by the scriptures they had at that time, those who were spiritually inclined were able to recognize Him, and know assuredly that John the Baptist was not just trying to put something over on them when he said, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” Only those who were awaiting their Messiah according to expectations aroused by the scriptures were able to recognize and accept Him, and that speaks of the hunger and thirst after righteousness, that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 5:6. Let me explain what I mean. Water itself has no nutritional food value, but it is the vehicle that carries the nutrients, and also keeps the body cool and stable. The lack of it sets up a thirst in your system, a craving for a drink, and only a drink of fresh water will completely satisfy that thirst. Other liquids are sometimes taken in place of it, and they help, but usually you will still crave a good drink of water even after drinking something else. Now, let us look at the Spirit of God from this water standpoint. Just the Spirit alone does not furnish us with the spiritual nutrients that are required for a new birth, and for a healthy spiritual being. The word of God is our spiritual food, and His Spirit is the vehicle that carries, distributes, and stabilizes. Therefore, just as your natural body requires food and water for its continued existence, so does your soul require the completeness that comes only from a Holy Ghost birth, and a regular Holy Ghost feeding from the word of God. Some want God’s word, but care little about His Spirit, Others want His Spirit, but care little about His word. Then there are those foreknown-of-God souls, that hunger and thirst after righteousness, and they must have both, and they will have both. Some of them have been taught wrong, like the young man who is trying to receive the Holy Ghost according to U.P.C. requirements; therefore, it takes them longer than some others who just simply open up to God, and receive whatever He has for them, without instructing Him how to give them what they need. Does not the scripture say that God already knows what we have need of, even before we pray? Would that not pertain to anything we have a right to expect from God? After all, who instructed Him on how to speak this old world out of chaos, out of its without form and void condition of Genesis1:1? Should such a God need to be told how and when to give a hungry soul the Holy Ghost? I think not.


SEEK THE GIVER OF GIFTS


The reason some people never get what they are praying for, is because they are praying for someone else’s experience. They want it just exactly like Bro. So and So got it, and never stop to realize that God cannot be obligated to give them someone else’s experience. That would be just like a Ford car (if it could speak) demanding Chevrolet parts be installed on it. You must always seek the Giver of the gifts, and not necessarily the gifts themselves. Once you have the GIFT GIVER inside you, you have the potential for any and every gift of the Spirit that is mentioned in the scriptures. In I Corinthians 12:11, Paul says that He (the Holy Ghost) divides to every man severally as He will, and tongues is one of those gifts that he mentions, so anyone who demands to speak in tongues as the evidence that he has the Holy Ghost, is just simply opening himself up to the possibility of receiving the devil’s counterfeit experience. When we look at the 11th chapter of Hebrews, we find a long list of people that obtained a good report, or we might say, that established a good witness. How did they do it? By faith. Faith is what? The word of God. Notice verse 6, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, (In other words, they cannot doubt the existence of the holy and sovereign God.)and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Brothers and Sisters: that is why many times, only a half dozen or so, out of a congregation of 900 people will actually hear the word of God with their spiritual ear, and follow Him all the way, the others were not hungry for God, and thereby could not exercise faith to lay hold upon His promises. That three thousand Jews that became pricked in their hearts on the day of Pentecost when Peter preached a little short sermon to them, were hungry and thirsty. When they asked Peter and the other apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Peter simply answered, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” What does it say about them? Did any of them say, I will have to speak in tongues before I will believe I have received? No, they did not. Notice verse 41, “Then they that GLADLY RECEIVED his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”


YOUR OWN PERSONAL FOUNTAIN


Some people sit in church for years never have any hunger nor thirst for the things of God. Yet right in the midst of them, there will be a soul that is getting so hungry and thirsty that they actually begin to crave something to satisfy. That is how God gets His people out of denominational systems. When a person gets hungry and thirsty for natural food and drink, what do they do? They begin to look around and ask questions. They don’t just sit down somewhere and say, I sure am hungry and thirsty, I hope someone will come by and give me something to eat and drink. That would be very foolish; would it not: I know what I do at such times. I begin to inquire, Where can I get a cold drink of water? Where can I get a hot dog, or a hamburger? Are you listening to me? If you are truly hungry for the things of God, will you not do the same thing. Most of your inquiry may be of the Lord, in prayer, but you will at least be searching for that true spiritual food. You will not just sit somewhere wishing for it. That is the reason Jesus said, if any man is thirsty, let him come unto me, and drink. You must come to the source. Alright then, so you seek that living water that can quench the thirsting of your soul. When you find the true supplier of that which you seek, and you drink of Him according to what the scriptures have authorized, from that time on, you will have that bubbling fountain springing up from within you. “Out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.” You will not have to go looking for that source any more, for it will remain with you always. What did He say in another place? “I will never leave you, nor forsake you.” There are people speaking in tongues in every nation around this old globe, that do not have that thirst quenching Spirit of Jesus Christ within their soul. How do I know that? Simply because Jesus said that the Comforter, (the Holy Ghost) when He comes will teach you all things. He does not come into you just to enable you to shout and dance and have a good time. That is part of it, but there is a lot more. Two of the gospel writers, Matthew and Luke, quoted John the Baptist like this. “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but He that cometh after me (Jesus Christ) is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire.”


HOLY GHOST AND FIRE


Now, hear me, the Holy Ghost baptism, and the first baptism are not two separate experiences. When you get one, you get both. God is Spirit, and the Holy Ghost is God, and God is light, and in Jeremiah 23:29, we find that God’s word is like a fire. Of course, some people only think of fire from the standpoint of its consuming affect, yet as well as giving light, fire is also a cleansing, purifying agent. Therefore, to receive the true baptism of the Holy Ghost and fire, is to receive a thirst quenching, light giving, purifying Spirit within your soul, that will take the things of Christ and make them a living reality to you. The Spirit of God and the word of God are inseparable. In reality you cannot have one without the other, for it is the Spirit that sheds light upon the word in order that we may receive it as a revelation. God’s word is spoken of, in the sense that it is bread, the bread of eternal life, that which satisfies your hungry soul. Then when you compare these things with what you know from the standpoint of the natural man, any time we eat to satisfy our hungry pains, we immediately become thirsty; we need something to quench your thirst. That is the reason it absolutely takes both the Spirit and the word to make a soul healthy and complete. In the days when Jesus Christ walked among men upon earth, He spoke words to them, and they heard them with their natural ears, but they did not receive a spiritual revelation, except on rare occasions, until after the Holy Ghost was given on the day of Pentecost.


THIRST QUENCHER – COMFORTER – TEACHER


Let us read John 14:25-26, Jesus speaking says, (25) “These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. (26) But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, He shall TEACH YOU ALL THINGS, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” Before He ended His earthly ministry, Jesus impressed upon His disciples the absolute importance and necessity for them to receive the Holy Ghost. He calls Him the Comforter, and that is exactly what He is. He does not come in, to disturb and confuse you; He comes in to comfort and teach you, and if He is truly in you, HE WILL TEACH YOU. Now, Brothers and Sisters: Are we to believe that Jesus was talking about two separate experiences in chapter 7 and chapter 14? Absolutely not. He is speaking of different functions of that one and self-same Spirit that all true believers was to receive. (Was to be baptized with) God is like a fire in the sense that He gives light, consumes foreign matter, and purifies. He is like water, in the sense that He quenches our thirst and bubbles up from our innermost being like a fountain. But He is also a teacher and Comforter. Jesus knew those disciples loved, and leaned upon His physical flesh. It took His physical contact to encourage and keep those disciples going. (Man is much like that today. As long as he has a leader, some personality to hold on to: Brother! He will go around the world. But you let him lose sight of that person and he will go to pieces.) Jesus knew the hour was coming when they would have to have something other than His physical flesh to hold on to; therefore, He was leading them to the place where they could recognize His spiritual presence that would be inside them, not just in their midst. At the time of His speaking these things, it was just like a foreign language to them. They did not understand it at all, but He spoke it to them just the same, knowing that once the Comforter had come, all these words would come alive to them. He did not have to worry about them stumbling over His statements, for the Comforter would pick up right where He left off, and quicken them to their understanding. Now some may ask, Just how does the word Comforter mean the same thing as the word teacher? Let us just think of it like this, Many times, the reason we need a comforter in the first place, is because we just simply do not understand. You all know how that works. There are times when our burden seems so heavy that we may wonder, How will I ever make it through this? But along comes someone who truly understands our situation, someone who can feel our very emotions, and with a heart of compassion they can speak a few words that will just lift all that pressure off of us. That person is a comforter. Not THE COMFORTER, but A comforter. The very presence of such a person brings a calmness to our emotions, and helps us stabilize our course. When we sing that little chorus, “Jesus is all I need,” we are not thinking of his physical presence with us; we are thinking of His Spiritual presence, and the fact that He is the supplier of our every need. He is not in us just to comfort us, if He were we would never learn anything that would help us mature spiritually. Those who desire the Holy Ghost just for the sake of speaking in tongues, and for the good time they can have, never grow one inch in the stature of Christ. You can listen to them testify year after year, and almost know word for word what they are going to say, when they get up. They have no hunger, nor thirst for anything else. They will speak of the Holy Ghost as their Comforter, but you never hear of Him teaching them anything. Some of them may tell something that they say He taught them, but they would fight you if you told them that God was not three persons, or that the holy trinity is Catholic doctrine, so you tell me, Based upon true revelation of the scriptures, does such a person have the Holy Ghost? If so, then why has He not taught them who He is? Jesus said, When He comes He will teach you all things. Brother and Sister: a true revelation of the Godhead is a beginners lesson. That is part of the foundation what we build upon, the most vital part of our foundation.


WHERE LIFE BEGINS


Let me explain at this time why, even though the Holy Ghost is a thirst quencher, we still get thirsty again. We must understand though, that getting thirsty again does not mean that we must keep coming back to get baptized with the Holy Ghost all over again. No. There is one baptism that puts a person into the body of Christ. That is the baptism of the Holy Ghost, according to I Corinthians 12:13, and even though He is a thirst quencher according to the words of Jesus in your text, He still makes sure you retain your spiritual ability to thirst. He keeps that activated. It is through your spiritual thirsting and hunger, that He is able to lead you into ALL TRUTH. Those who are satisfied just to speak in tongues, cannot be led very far by the Holy Ghost, if you know what I mean. If you don’t know what I mean, I will tell you. If the Holy Ghost is truly in you, He will cause you to hunger and thirst for more of God. When you receive the Holy Ghost, you have not reached a climax in your spiritual life; that is where your spiritual life actually begins, a life of growth and progress. As you begin to hunger and thirst for more of God, the Holy Ghost in you, sheds more light upon the word, and that encompasses one phase of the fire aspect of the Holy Ghost. Anyone who allows their mind to get hung up on one thing, will go no further with God. They are just like an old cow tied to a stake with a short chain. That old cow will just keep going around and around the stake until all the grass is either eaten or stomped into the ground; then all there is left is just bare ground to roam over. The devil has an awful lot of people staked out with a short chain in this hour of time. They do not have a sprig of anything fresh to chew on, spiritually speaking. I could start naming those that claim to have the initial evidence of the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and if you could get them all together, you would have one big fight on your hands, doctrinally. Literally, evidence is proof, so why do those who claim to have the proof that they have been baptized with the Holy Ghost, not agree on the basic doctrine of Christ?


UNDERSTANDING BRINGS SPIRITUAL GROWTH


I have heard some Trinitarians from time to time, as they would be confronted with Acts 2:38, say, I would rather take the words of Jesus in Matthew 28:19, anytime, than to take the words of Peter who actually denied knowing Jesus when He was arrested. To that I will just say, If they are so eager to take the words of Jesus, then why do they not have what Jesus said the Holy Ghost would be, to those who receive Him? Why do they not have a teacher within them? Brothers and sisters: you know, and I know that something is wrong. They want the Holy Ghost for certain specified benefits, but they will not let Him come in and take over their lives. They will not let Him tear down their old sectarian interpretations and creeds and establish them in the revelated word of God. I want you to be sure and catch the importance of what Jesus said here in John 14:25, so I am going to read it again. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, HE SHALL TEACH YOU ALL THINGS, and bring ALL THINGS to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” Not only will He teach you all things that shall come up in the future, but anything that has been said in the past and not understood will be re-called to your remembrance, and understanding given. Why? Because that is His primary function in a believer’s daily life. God does not want His people to be ignorant of His word, His will, and His purpose. We are not admonished in the scriptures to grow in theology; we are admonished to grow in grace, and in the knowledge and stature of Jesus Christ. Out here in spiritual Babylon (confusion) they will wrestle you down to the altar, practically force you to repeat after them what they refer to as the sinner’s prayer. Then they will beat you on the back, shake you chin, speak in tongues, and have you repeat it, and then tell you that you have just received the Holy Ghost. Then they wonder why such a person is so often found back out in the world practicing his same old sinful habits. Need I explain it to you? What did such a person receive? I grant you this, that now and then a truly hungry soul will come that route in their search for reality, but such a person will not stop there forever. As the Holy Ghost begins to put a hunger in their soul, they will first begin to ask questions of their pastor, their Sunday school teacher, or anyone else that they respect, and finally, when they have failed to receive an answer that will satisfy their hunger, they begin to search outside of the denominational structure, and that is when the Holy Ghost will lead them to truth. One thing is sure though, Such a person will not receive the Holy Ghost just because someone beats them on the back and shakes their chin. If they do truly receive, it will be because of their hunger for righteousness.


DARKNESS CANNOT PRODUCE LIGHT


I heard a news commentator interviewing a man that had been occupied with some job in your nation’s capital, a man that was supposed to have been recently converted, according to his own testimony. As he was questioned about his present outlook on life, and his present plans, he said he was getting ready to enter, I believe it was some Baptist seminary, to study theology. The Bible is so unlimited, he said. Brothers and Sisters: that is the truth. The Bible is unlimited, but I hope you will believe me when I tell you this, The Bible is not meant to be a religious text book, so you can study religion, and then use it in politics, or for some worldly gain. God is not saving souls just to turn them loose out here in Babylon for some preacher or politician to use them. If you think He is, then you are in worse shape than those we are talking about. Of course there are people who will jump up and say, You do not have a vision for souls, or you would not talk like that. I will just turn that remark right around and say, Your vision for souls will never amount to anything more than a lot of confusion, until you get your own life in line with the word of God. You will never get one soul into the kingdom of God until God begins to deal with that soul to draw him. Did Jesus say, in John 6:44, “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day?” What good is your vision for lost souls, if you yourself do not know the truth of the gospel of Christ? Can your traditions save him? The early church had a vision. They had a commission, an objective, and they had the qualifications, and materials, to present a true witness of Jesus Christ. They weren’t giving out Satan’s perverted hand-me-down religion; they were preaching, and testifying according to a true revelation of who Jesus Christ is, and what He accomplished at Calvary for lost mankind. Isn’t it strange that they did not have any Bible schools in that first age of Christianity, if God only works through such places now? You who are spiritual already know the answer to that questions, so let us move along to our next scripture.


SPIRIT OF TRUTH


Let us turn to St. John 15:26, where we will find another term applied to the Holy Ghost, by Jesus, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, (not another person of the Godhead, but the sovereign Spirit which is God,) even the Spirit of TRUTH, (I want you to notice this term, SPIRIT OF TRUTH,) which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of me.” What would He tell them? That Jesus was the second person of a triune Godhead? I dare you to find such a thing in the Bible. Alright then, let us see just what Jesus has said about the Holy Ghost up to this point. We have FIRE, WATER, COMFORTER, TEACHER and now, TRUTH. Why did He keep referring to Him in a different way, by a different term? It lets me know that those who do truly receive the genuine baptism of the Holy Ghost, have something within them that will do a complete job. He will be to you everything you need to mold you into the image of Jesus Christ, and present you spotless, and without a wrinkle or blemish on that blessed day that we are longing for. In John 6:35, Jesus said, “I am the BREAD of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” You will never hunger and thirst for soul salvation again, but your hunger and thirst will be for a closer walk with God, and to be more like Jesus Christ. Well, how do we eat of this bread of life? What is it? It is the revealed word of God. A person could go to a Bible school for 10 years, and still never eat one bit of that bread of life. Why? Because this bread is only for those who are born again, and to be born again is to be baptized with the Holy Ghost, and most of those who feel such a need for theology have never had this experience, or they would not be where they are. He would lead them into truth, and out of their Bible school. They would throw their cigarettes away and dress right, and be concerned about what kind of image they portray. I remember years ago, when the Spirit of God was still among the Methodist people, God would get hold of a lost soul; that person would go to church and get saved, and the Holy Spirit would lead them into that sanctified experience according to the light they had then, and they would not need anyone to tell them to throw away their cigarettes, and chewing tobacco and alcoholic beverages. The Holy Ghost would tell them. But what do you see, passing those places in this day and hour? You can see them flip their cigarettes as they go up the steps to the church house door. You can see their women going in dressed in their lib-suits, slacks, blue jeans and you name it. They go into those places to learn the doctrines of John Wesley, and to pacify themselves, because they feel that a person ought to go to church at least on Sunday morning, but the FIRE, THE LIGHT, has moved off and left their system dead, and they still do not know it.


NO HOLY GHOST FILLED CATHOLICS


Brothers and Sisters: Going to church ought not be just to fulfill a ritual once or twice a week. The Bible teaches us to assemble ourselves together, and it is important that we do so as often as we can, for this is where the Holy Ghost works among the body of believers in various ways. This is also where we are taught the things of God. We would not even suggest that a person could not be a born again Christian if they did not assemble with other Christians, for we know that there are precious souls that are denied that privilege for various reasons, but if you are where you can, and you just simply do not feel the need to, you had better check up on your spiritual experience with God. Furthermore, I want to put some emphasis on this 26th verse, in John 15, for the sake of those who read it so lightly. When Jesus referred to the Holy Ghost as the Spirit of truth, brother, that ought to tell us something. He will not tell one person that God is ONE, and then tell someone else that God is three persons, a holy trinity. I will not tell you that you could not receive the Holy Ghost until you understand the Godhead, but if the spirit you received lets you go through life believing that God is three persons, you did not receive the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of truth. I will go one step further if you can receive it. There are not Holy Ghost filled Catholics, no Holy Ghost filled Baptists, Methodist, Lutherans, nor any such like. Jesus said the Holy Ghost is the Spirit of truth, and I know, and am fully persuaded that He will not be in a person and allow them to keep on being Catholics, Baptists and such like. There was a day, when God overlooked all those denominational titles, and just dealt with the hungry souls that carried them, while He was preparing them for more light that was still to be restored. But we are living in an hour when the light of God’s word has led His true children out of those systems and the systems are without life. Those hungry souls that came to the Azusa Street mission came as Baptists, Methodist, Nazarenes, and all such life, but when God gave them the holy Ghost, slain many of they , and laid them on the floor speaking in tongues for hours, they did not leave there with their denominational titles; they left as new creatures in Christ Jesus, even some of those that just came in to find fault and criticize. Many of those people, up until the Azusa Street hour, thought they had everything God had to offer, yet Christianity at that hour spent more time fussing over doctrines than they did worshiping God. But when it was time for more light to be revealed, God began to put a hunger, and a thirst in many of them. Well, if there is a thirst there, we know that God will always have what it takes to quench that thirst, so as these began to seek Him, they would wind up speaking in tongues. What was it? They were receiving the Spirit of Truth in a measure. Now, Bro. Jackson, in the light of Acts 2:4, how can you make a statement like that? Just be still until we get to Acts 2:4, and we will see. There are a lot of Pentecostals that believe in Acts 2:4, but when they get over to Acts 2:38, they don’t believe any more. Does that help answer your questions? Acts 2:38 is actually the door to Acts 2:4, and a lot more. I remember years ago, the Canada brothers would sing a little song, “If you believe in Acts 2:4, and you don’t read any more, There’s an eye watching you. You’ll have trouble at the gate, about Acts 2:38, So, if I were you, I’d make a change.” It has been a long time since I heard anyone sing that little song, but it is the absolute truth. I sometimes wonder how many of you, when you speak of the Holy Ghost, are you speaking of Him just from the supernatural standpoint? I believe in the supernatural power of God as much as any of you, but I also realize that there is a lot more than that involved in a dedicated, Spirit filled walk with God. He can knock you down, pick you up, spin you around, heal your sick body, show you visions and dreams, cause you to speak in tongues, prophesy, and a lot more, but He also wants to lead you into all truth, and into a life of true holiness where He can order your footsteps moment by moment. Carnal man is always trying to pull God down to his carnal level, run everything through a traditional pipeline, and make a doctrine out of everything God does. I never worry too much about what the Holy Ghost leads a person to do, just as long as that person does not try to make a doctrine out of what they do.


SPIRITUAL HOUSE CLEANING


Many times I have listened to Pentecostal folks as they would deal with other people and hear them say, Oh, when the Holy Ghost comes, He speaks for Himself. Of course, I know what they mean, but in reality, Jesus said the Holy Ghost would not speak of Himself but would magnify the things of Jesus Christ. In other words, the Spirit would not be magnifying the Spirit, but rather, the word of God. Furthermore, the Holy Ghost being the Spirit of truth, He is quite capable of correcting error wherever it may be, for one thing is sure, if there is a mistake, it did not originate with Him; He does not make mistakes. Any mistake, either originated from the human spirit of man, or from the devil, the adversary of God and all His true people. The Holy Ghost will definitely correct error though, for He remains to be our Comforter, and there is little comfort to be realized, when we are out of step with God. Jesus said, “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” He also said, “I will not leave you comfortless; I will come to you.” Brother, and Sister: when I see people sad, confused, bewildered, one thing I know, they need a Comforter, and they have not yet found Him. He is never far away; It is just that many people have never opened the door of their mind enough to allow Him to take over. He does not like to come into your life with restrictions hanging on the wall; He wants you to throw the door wide open and say, Lord, you come in and take control. Do anything you want to do. That is the only way He can be your Comforter. He must have the privilege of rearranging your spiritual house to suit His taste. You do not have to worry though, for He is a good interior decorator. He will not throw out anything you need, and neither will He leave your house a wreck. He will get everything in perfect order.


SPIRIT OF CONVICTION – REPROOF – JUDGMENT


Alright now, as we move into the 16th chapter of John’s gospel, beginning with verse 7, and reading down through verse 11, we find Jesus saying something else about this Comforter that is to come. Listen, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth: It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you.” Jesus continues to use the term, Comforter, even as He tells of what He will do among all mankind, and I believe what He says here in these verses is to back up what He said in John 6:44, “No man can come unto me, except the Father (the great eternal Spirit) which hath sent me draw him.” Therefore, notice what the office work of the Holy Spirit is, as pertaining to lost mankind. He said, “It is expedient for you that I go away.” That word, expedient, means necessary. In order for the Holy Spirit to come on the scene and fulfill His office work, the flesh man (Jesus) would have to be off the scene, for the work described in these next verses is a universal work, not to be limited to what Jesus would do as He walked upon earth in those days. Verse 8, “And when He is come, He will reprove the world of sin, (To reprove, is to convict. He is convicting the world of their sin of unbelief. Not everyone; just those who were foreknown of God from before the foundation of the world.) And of righteousness, and of judgment: (9) Of sin, because they believe not of me: (10) Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more: (11) Of Judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.” What causes a man of the world to just merely go his own carefree way through life? Unbelief toward God, of course. What causes a person that has live like that to suddenly become God conscious? The convicting power of the Holy Spirit, as He begins to convict and woo that person. Before the Holy Spirit moves upon the scene and does His work, you could talk your head off to such a person, and they would still not have any time for God. You can ask them, Don’t you think it is about time for you to get right with God? But their reply will be something like this, I don’t have time for anything like that right now. Besides, I have done too many bad things in life; God don’t want me. He wouldn’t have any pity of a person like me. These are just excuses. It doesn’t matter how rotten and ornery a person has been in their past life, when they repent God will receive them. But the truth is, they cannot repent until the Holy Spirit begins to convict and draw them. Genuine soul salvation is not something you can sell to people like apples and oranges; it is a free gift, and only God Himself knows who will receive His gift of eternal life. Now the Holy Spirit does not get hold of a lost man and just begin to convict him that it is wrong to drink, smoke, gamble, and such as that. What He works on, is that person’s unbelief. When their unbelief goes out, so do all their ungodly habits begin to go also. That person will begin to have different desires, different cravings. Those old habits will cease to satisfy. That hungering in their soul can only be satisfied by a good spiritual meal from the table of God’s word.


RIGHTEOUSNESS


The next phase of this convicting process deals with righteousness. The Jews of that hour thought they had the inside track on righteousness. They felt so holy, and from the outward appearance they did look holy, but inwardly they were as mean as snakes. Underneath all their holy paraphernalia stood men crying, Crucify him! Who does he think he is, calling us children of the devil? There stood the Righteousness of God in their very midst, and they were only interested in seeing Him put to death, so they would no longer have an accusing finger pointed toward them. Only the Holy Ghost can convict individuals, and show them what true righteousness really is. Most of us have lived to see people put on their righteous front, wear their Sunday school pins, and go to church for a few minutes at least once a week. Some of them will have their whole chest decorated with these Sunday school attendance pins, look and talk so holy, and try to make you feel so worthless, if you are not one of them. Yet God is not interested in any of that. He couldn’t care less if you have your chest decorated like a soldier that has just returned from the war. People who delight themselves with such as this, do not know the first thing about true righteousness, therefore when the Holy Ghost comes, He does not bother that fellow. He started to Sunday school as a very small boy, and he has had this man-made standard of righteousness drilled into him all his life. Now he is an old gray headed man, walking up the steps of the church house with a cane, wearing his pins, and thinking about all of his achievement awards through the years. He is completely dedicated to all that is meaningful to him, but somehow the Holy Ghost has never seemed to tell that old fellow that he is going the wrong way. If you try to talk to him, he will stand there quivering, leaning on that old cane, and say, Listen son, I have been in Sunday school all my life; I have done this and that, and so on, so don’t try to tell me that I am wrong. I have memorized almost half of the Bible, and I have spent hours and hours discussing the scriptures with Dr. So and So, and we agree upon everything, and besides, Where did you go to school? You try to talk to him about some of the deeper truths of the Bible, and he will say, I don’t think we have to know all of that in order to be saved, and go to heaven. Why does he talk like that? Simply because the Holy Spirit has never convicted him, or shown him what true righteousness is. Now to you who may think I am making fun of such people, let me assure you, I am not! Except for the grace and mercy of God I could be just exactly like that. Nevertheless truth is truth, regardless of who it hits. Some of you may have relatives that are just exactly like that; I cannot help that, but I can tell you the truth about it.


I will never forget, when I was a little boy, going to the Church of Christ church, at Borden, Indiana. They always had the Lord’s supper following the morning service, and one of the deacons that would get up there explaining how to prepare yourself and get ready to receive it, had all the tell tale signs of a tobacco chewer. He would go through all of his ritual just the way he had been taught. But as soon as the service was over, and he got out the church house door, out would come his plug of tobacco, and his knife to whack off a chew. Cars, in those days, did not have windows that rolled up and down, so he could just spit tobacco juice all the way home, and never have to worry about rolling down a window. Who will the Holy Ghost convict of righteousness? Those that He is drawing. If He convicted the whole world, then the whole world would throw away their tobacco, beer, wine, whiskey and all such like. He will convict people from every nation in the world, but certainly not all of the people of the world.


JUDGMENT


Let us look at the judgment aspect now, for a few minutes. “Of judgment, because the prince of this world if judged.” What a trial. What a judgment. The real judge of the world was judged by the world. That, in itself, shows just how much or how little, those religious people of that hour knew about truth. They had very little concept about what true faith in God was, and what true righteousness was, or what true judgment was. All of their programs were run by natural minded men; the Spirit of God had no part in it. Their judgment was not even according to the law of Moses; it was according to their traditions. Therefore, this Comforter that Jesus spoke of, was not only going to reprove the world for their unjust judgment; He also, would teach some folks how true judgment should operate. With Him dwelling in believers, Paul said that the saints, (true believers) would judge the world, even angels, and therefore should be able now, to judge matters among ourselves, without having to go outside the body of believers. Jesus is saying these things to His disciples, preparing them for His departure, and for the coming of His Spirit that would lead their lives into all truth and understanding. Then notice what He said to them in verse 12, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” What did He mean? Simply this, He had many spiritual things to impart to them, deeper things. But He knew, that without the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, the Spirit of truth, they did not have anything in them to understand with, so let us notice verse 13. “Howbeit (nevertheless) when He, the SPIRIT OF TRUTH, is come, He will guide you into all truth; for He shall not speak of Himself; but whosoever He shall bear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come. (14) He shall glorify me: for He shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you.” As I said before, I like this term, SPIRIT OF TRUTH. When you go back to John 14:6, Jesus said to Thomas, “I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” That lets us know that the SPIRIT OF TRUTH is the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, and when He is in us, we are one with Him, and with each other; just like He prayed in John 17:21. Therefore from within a believer, He can guide that person into ALL TRUTH. That does not mean that He will force you into truth. That is not what a guide does. In the natural, a guide is someone to lead you, or assist you in what you desire to do. So as it also in the spiritual realm; when you reach a point of hunger, or desire. He is right there, to lead and assist you. One big difference, compared to a guide in natural things, is that He knows our limitations and abilities, and will never try to take you beyond your limits. (That is the reason you have 30, 60, and 100 fold Christians, in the parable of Matthew 13:3-8.) Collectively, He guides the church as a group, but personally, He guides every individual believer according to their own abilities. Brothers and Sisters, we need that calm, careful, loving presence, as we journey through this life, for we are traveling on a pathway of life that we have never traveled before. I readily confess that I do not know a thing about it, and I am so thankful to have a guide that I can depend upon, one that is well qualified.


WHERE IS GOD’S HOUSE?


When you go on a tour, and land over there in Israel, and the tour guide meets you, and takes you to your bus, he will always introduce himself, or in some cases, herself, and from that point on, you are looking to that guide to assist you, and to teach you. They do not necessarily have a revelation of all that they know about the various places they will take you, but one thing is sure, they can tell you WHAT took place at those points of interest. It seems like Ben Meyerstein, just goes out of his way trying to make each tour as meaningful to us as possible, and that is exactly what the Holy Ghost does for every believer that has purposed to follow Him. He goes out of His way in order to guide you into all truth, and also to sit you down and teach you, so to speak. In other words, we need a guide when we are on a journey, and we are on a journey, but from the standpoint of also being our teacher, sometimes it is necessary for us to sit down, settle down, and be taught of Him. You can draw another parallel of spiritual and natural right here. A guide will lead you to a certain point, then when he has everyone’s attention, he will take time to explain, or teach what he knows about that place. Now that takes my mind back to the UPC people. They followed the guide to the truth that God is ONE instead of trinity, like the Assemblies of God teach. But they have never stopped long enough to be taught anything else by Him. They are busily passing right by God’s storehouse of revelation. They spend so much time rejoicing over their initial evidence, (speaking in tongues) they do not even realize that they have actually stopped right in the doorway of the kingdom of God. They have no idea whatsoever about what is inside. They talk about their mansion in heaven, and have never come to the knowledge that every true believer is a mansion where God dwells. “In my Father’s house are many mansions.” That is the absolute truth. God’s true people are the house of God, and He lives in every one of them. There are your mansions; believers that are filled with the Holy Ghost. “I go to prepare a place for you.” Where did He go? Did He go into heaven with a load of bricks and stones to build mansions for us? Is that what you think He meant? Let me tell you where He went. He went to Calvary, wore a crown of thorns, and shed His precious blood. For what? To prepare a place for us in His Father’s house. If He had not prepared a place for us, we could not be where we are today, in the house of God. (In His great body of believers.) Now to you UPC people who think you have all that God has to offer, I will say this, If you live to be a hundred and twenty years old, you will still not have all that God has to offer, for His word is a storehouse of spiritual nutrients, and there never comes a time in this natural life, that we have received all that it is possible to receive from the Lord. There is always something else that the Holy Spirit can teach you. But Bro. Jackson, I thought you said, He would lead us into all truth. That is absolutely correct. In every age He has led true believers into all the truth that pertained to their age, but those that are privileged to live until Jesus comes to catch His bride away, will know things that no other believer has ever known before.


WHO SHOULD BE GLORIFIED?


Jesus said that the Holy Ghost would not speak of Himself when He came, so where does that leave some of you who are forever glorifying the Holy Spirit that you claim to have received? If He is in you, then why is He not doing what He is supposed to do? “He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come. He shall glorify me: for He shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you.” In other words, He will point the believer to Jesus Christ and the redemptive work of God, and anything in the future that would be beneficial to believers, He will show also. But every believer ought to be persuaded in his heart that the Holy Ghost is not in them to go contrary to what Jesus said He would come to do. Certainly we are not publishing this message to diminish anything from the true work of the Holy Ghost, but rather, in an effort to help you better understand just exactly who He is, what He is doing in the world today, and what the true evidence of His presence is. Therefore, if you will bear with me, we will just allow the scriptures themselves to answer your questions on this subject, for we want to give every attribute of the Holy Ghost full recognition, but in its proper place, and at the proper time. Thousands upon thousands are walking away from the real truth of the scriptures, and just using a little text, of a verse or two here and there in an effort to give their man-made programs a scriptural identify, but genuine Bible believers are getting wise to them. I am becoming more and more convinced every day, that Pentecost of today, even though it is still less than 80 years old, is far from being in the will of God. Their own systems and programs are proof that the light and fire of the Holy Ghost is leaving their camps. He is leaving every system of religion, and leading every predestined soul out with Him. Naturally I do not want anyone just to take my word for anything that is said in this message, so that is why I feel it is so important not to leave out any verse of scripture that will be beneficial to our understanding as we deal with this subject. So let us go to the 20th chapter of John, where we will begin reading with verse 19.


PREPARATORY COMMAND


I do not know if you have ever noticed this or not, but it was John that actually put the emphasis upon these various statements made by Jesus. It seems that he just picked up every one of them, the very minute Jesus began to speak of a Comforter to come. He picked up every term that Jesus attributed to this Comforter, and wrote it for believers to read later. When Jesus spoke of a Comforter, the water of eternal life, fire, light, a guide, a teacher: it seems that John’s heart was picking up every word of it, and it was really speaking to him. What we are going to read now was one of the last statements Jesus made before His departure from the earth, so let us notice what He said, and what He did, and try to understand the significance of it. (19) “Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst of them, and said, Peace be unto you. (This was the evening of the same day He arose from the grave.) (20) And when He had so said, He showed unto them His hands and His side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. (21) Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: (Now right here, comes the commission for going out to preach the gospel, but we also see here, the preparation and condition that would put that commission into effect.) As my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. (22) And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost.” Brothers and Sisters, I want to be sure you realize that there was no experience of receiving anything at that particular time. No one received anything other than a preparatory command, that was given to condition their thinking, and to alert them to what was to come later. Up to this point He has only told them to receive something. He has not told them what to listen for, nor what to look for, nor how they would feel when they received; He only told them to receive it. No man had ever had the chance to doctrinalize the experience, therefore their minds were completely clear and void of man’s contamination. That is the true beauty of it all. There was no possible way they could maneuver each other in order to speed up the process, all they could possibly do, was just obey what Jesus told them, wait until.

PROMISE OF THE FATHER


We must read Luke 24:29, and Acts 1:8, more or less together now, in order to catch a complete picture of what has been said to these disciples. Luke wrote both the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts, but at different intervals of time, therefore even though both of these statements were made at the same time, they were not recorded together, so let us read Acts 1:8, first. Beginning with verse 4, Jesus has instructed those disciples to wait at Jerusalem until they receive the promise of the Father, and told them what the promise of the Father was, and when you get down to verse 8, you read, “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 Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Verse 9, lets us know when these words were spoken, just before He ascended into heaven, so let us now read Luke 24:49, to get the rest of the picture together. He has just been reminding them of how the law and the prophets are being fulfilled by what is taking place, and telling them that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name, and we learn from Acts 1, that they are not to begin this work until after they have received power from on high, or the power of the Holy Ghost. He told them that they were witnesses of those things, and then said, verse 49, “And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” Then verse 51, lets us know when those words were spoken. He told them all those things standing right there on the mount of Olives, just before He was parted from them, and received up into the clouds. But this promise of the Father is what He had actually been talking to them about for 3½ years, so it was not something new that He sprang upon them right at the last minute. Back over in John 7:37, where we started this message, He was speaking of the promise of the Father when He said, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” The only thing is, this outpouring of the Holy Ghost, recorded in Acts 2:4 could not take place just anywhere, and at any time; it had to coincide exactly with a certain feast spoken of in Leviticus, the feast of Pentecost. That is why Jesus told those disciples to tarry in the city of Jerusalem until they received power from on high. He did not tell them just exactly how long they would have to wait, He just put their faith to the test by letting them have only those promises and instructions. Yet He, Himself, knew it could not take place until the feast days which typed and shadowed this event were fully come. Naturally the place where this festivity always took place, was Jerusalem, so that is why they were told not to depart from Jerusalem until they had received this power from on high.


POWER FROM ON HIGH


This word POWER, that Jesus has now used for the first time, gives us another term that He has applied to the Holy Ghost. This speaks of the supernatural side of the workings of the Spirit they are to receive. There are other scriptures where this word, power, simply means authority, but in this particular setting it literally means, power, for when you take it to Mark 16:20 and Hebrew 2:4, you find that wherever these first age believers witnessed of the things they had seen and heard, the Lord worked with them, confirming their word with signs, and miracles, and wonders, but according to His own will. How did the Lord work with them? By the supernatural power of the Holy Ghost. Brother, I will guarantee you one thing; they were not preaching an evidence of speaking in tongues. That was just one of the spiritual manifestations that followed when people believed and obeyed their testimony. But my point is, the power side of the Holy Ghost was manifested wherever those first age Christians witnessed of the Lord Jesus Christ. They were not going around bearing witness of the power of the Holy Ghost though; they were truly giving testimony and witness of what they had seen and heard, and how it fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies, and the Holy Ghost was on hand to back up their testimonies. In that first age, those disciples could bear witness, and give testimony of what they had seen and heard with their natural eyes and ears, as well as with their spiritual eyes and ears. That is what it means, to bear witness, or to bear testimony. You tell what you have seen and heard. Well, what about Gentiles that have never had any visual contact with the Lord Jesus Christ in the natural? Can they bear testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ? After they have been baptized with the Holy Ghost they can, for He, inside your vessel of clay, is the illuminator, the revelator, the teacher. Anyone who has the Holy Ghost can say, I know who Jesus is, He is the Christ, the Jewish Messiah that was to come. Within Him dwelleth all the fulness of the eternal Godhead. That is why the scripture says that no man can say that Jesus is Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. It takes the Holy Ghost to give that revelation to us spiritually. Therefore, we can know beyond any shadow of doubt that when some believe God is three persons, and others believe He is only one, one group has to be wrong. Someone is trying to bear witness of something they know nothing about. Do you believe the Holy Ghost would tell one group that God is ONE; and tell another group that God is three persons? An awful lot of those that believe He is three persons are speaking in tongues and claiming to have the Holy Ghost, so what is wrong? Most of them have followed signs instead of the word of God until God has given them over to strong delusion. I don’t know who is who along that line, but I do know this, There will not be one person in the rapture of the bride of Christ, that still believes God is three persons. You can mark that down. That little bride is to be perfected before she is caught up to be with the Bridegroom, and God is not perfecting those that reject the revelation of His word for this last age. That is why you have heard me say so many times, You simply cannot make it in on grandma’s faith; you have to have a personal revelation of your own, and that will correspond with what God is doing on the earth in your age.


NO SALVATION WITHOUT HOLY GHOST


Now let me say a word to some of you who may still think a few are going to make in into the portals of glory without ever receiving the Holy Ghost. Why would Jesus and the apostles stress the importance, and put so much emphasis upon the necessity of believers receiving the Holy Ghost if God was going to accept some without it? I would like to ask you also, Why do you think the apostle Paul would write to the Roman believers and say, “Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His,” if it isn’t essential? You will find that in Romans 8:9. Then, in verse 14, he said, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” From inside them, of course. In verse 11, he said, “But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken (make alive) your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.” Need I remind you what your lot will be, if the Spirit of Christ does not dwell in you in this life? I think you know already. This is not just some little game God is playing, trying to see just how many He can get over on His side. I assure you, He already knows who will believe and obey His word. He knew that before He ever even created a star or anything. By the same token, if He already knew who would believe and obey Him, He also knew who would not; therefore, just as believers are predestined to eternal life, unbelievers are foreordained, or predestinated to condemnation and destruction. But I do believe; I just don’t believe we all have to believe the same thing, in order to be saved. Mister: You are living in the wrong age to be talking like that. God has restored the truth to His true church; therefore, end-time believers absolutely must believe the same thing, and they will. There is no doubt about it, Revelated people are not going to believe you have the Holy Ghost, just on the mere fact that you can speak in tongues. Demons can speak in tongues also. I want to call your attention to a couple of verse in II Corinthians 11, where Paul is writing of false apostles, deceitful workers who transform themselves into the apostles of Christ, and he continues on, in verse 14, saying, “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. (15) Therefore it is no thing if his (Satan’s) ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.” The end for evil workers is destruction. Jesus was asked, “What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?” Do you know what His answer was? (John 6:28-29) “This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent.”


LOVE ONE ANOTHER


I am reminded of another statement Jesus made, and how carnal minded people have applied it, so let us read John 13:35, at this time, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” Jesus, speaking of the kind of love God has for His children, opened up an idea that carnal mankind has used to its limits. When you take that verse of scripture out of its context, you can put it into any denomination of religion, or even in a lodge, and they will build something that looks real, for it is within your human nature to love something. But, listen to me Saints: When Jesus spoke of this love one toward another it was not even to be applied in the category of humanity, aside from the recreated spirit within. The kind of love must first be exercised toward God, before it can be exercised among each other, and to love God is to love His word. If you do not have a love for the whole word of God, your love is as counterfeit as a plastic horn. True love will first put you in tune with God, and outside of that, there is no divine love, all you have is human love, and that can be very deceiving. Catholic priests and nuns have gone out, all over the world to work among poverty stricken humanity, and on the surface one might think this is exactly what Jesus was talking about, but I can assure you, that it is not. Just a few months ago, I noticed where they were giving praise and recognition to a certain nun, because she had spent so many years of her life in India, working among poverty stricken people. They heaped a great amount of praise upon her, for her love and dedication in all of this, and the world of religion looked upon her with great admiration. What a sacrifice that woman has made, was upon their lips. Now, Brothers and Sisters, you may get sore at me, and some of you may say, Bro. Jackson, you are just too hard hearted, but I must tell you this anyhow, That was not a love deed motivated from the fountain of love from above. Jesus was none other than the love of God, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever (WHAT? is hungry, might have a good hot meal fixed for them? Oh, NO.) BELIEVETH ON HIM should not perish, but have everlasting life.” That means, that anyone who recognizes that he is a lost sinner, whether rich or poor, and believes and obeys the gospel of Jesus Christ, will not perish in hell, but will have everlasting life. The man, Jesus, who was the Christ, was the living example of the love of God, yet there were many poor people around Him constantly, that He never lifted a hand to help. Then when some criticized a certain little woman that had anointed His feet with a little box of ointment they said should have been sold, and the money given to the poor, Jesus said, “Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this. For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.” Saints: I am not against helping the poor, but I am saying these things trying to show you that this is not what Jesus was speaking of, in that scripture verse we read. God will change the poverty situation in the Millennium, but in the meanwhile the church has the responsibility of reflecting the light of the saving grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. If man’s problems are ever to be taken away, he must first step into that light. If God could get into the hearts of all of mankind, you would not have multi-millionaires on one hand, and poverty stricken ones on the other. The Bible says that in the Millennium, every man shall sit under his own vine, and under his own fig tree, and shall eat the fruit thereof. They shall build houses, and inhabit them. They will not be disposessed by some mortgage holder. The Psalmist said, “I have seen the wicked in his great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree. Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: Yea, I sought him, but he could not be found.” God is getting ready to cut those old wicked trees down, and shortly thereafter, “The meek shall inherit the earth,” but meanwhile the love that causes one to know that we are disciples of Jesus Christ, must be a love that radiates from the inward presence of the One that would not be there, if we did not first have a genuine love for His word. No wonder the scripture says, “thy word O Lord is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my pathway.” When the Holy Ghost dwells within, and has control of our lives, we will not be running here and there, seeking the praise of other men. We will first seek to please God in all that we do. Then, our prayers will be something more than, “Now I lay me down to sleep.” We will learn to talk to God in an informal way, right from the depths of our soul. Shame on the person who claims to be filled with the Holy Ghost, and still prays those little memorized prayers, or is so formal and stiff collared the he cannot express his true feelings to God from the depths of his soul.


WHO WILL FOLLOW THE SHEPHERD?


It doesn’t matter what color our skin is, nor where we came from, nor what language we speak; when the Holy Ghost comes in and takes over our life, we then, and then only, are capable of exercising the kind of love one to another that Jesus was speaking of. The true people of God are many people, but they are not to be a people of many minds, for the apostle Paul said, “Be ye all of the same mind.” That simply means that God’s true people will all believe the same thing; they will not have different doctrines to fight over, as we have seen so much of, in denominational churches. Furthermore, you will not hear a person that is truly filled with the Holy Ghost say, I love God; but that serpent seen doctrine is out of the pit, or I would rather be baptized like Jesus said, than like Peter said. You cannot pronounce their eternal destiny, for God can always get hold of them, but you can know that such a person does not have the Holy Ghost fountain within to draw their words from. These are the kind that like to stand up and testify, I am saved, sanctified, and on my way to heaven, but they are like an old terrapin that has pulled his head inside his shell, and is afraid to stick it out again; they have closed their minds to the voice of God. Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.” He also said that sheep know the voice of their shepherd, and a stranger they will not follow, so will you please tell me how a person could have the Holy Ghost in their life, and still be afraid to hear the voice of God, as He speaks through His servants in these last days? Regardless of what some of you may think, the real sheep are those that are filled with the genuine Holy Ghost, and you will find that every one of them love the word of God, and they are not afraid of the truth. Those who are afraid to hear anything different than what they have always believed, could not possibly ever be ready to meet the Lord in the air, for those who will arise to meet Him, will have heard some things that they did not know before, from those 7 thunders of Revelation 10:3-4, things that the bride will need to know. Speaking in tongues won’t help you then, for only a pure revelation will be acceptable to Him. That is the only thing that the gates of hell cannot prevail against.


RECEIVING THE HOLY GHOST


We want to get back to the 2nd chapter of Acts now, and try to finish what we were saying about those that received the Holy Ghost there, on the day of Pentecost. All of the various phases of this feast of Pentecost pointed to the time when God would send the fire of the Holy Ghost to consume those that had offered themselves to him. As we said already, those that waited for the promise of the Father, there, in that upper room, did not have the slightest idea of what to expect, and neither did that group that was gathered in the house of Cornelius. The angel of the Lord God appeared to Cornelius in a vision, and said to him, Send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: He shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do. Now Cornelius sent for Peter, but he did not have the faintest idea of what he was going to hear, and even Peter as he went with those men, did not know what he was going to say, but the Holy Ghost inside him did the talking, once he entered into the presence of those Gentiles that were gathered there. What happened? They had what we call, a Pentecostal experience. Yes! They did speak in tongues, but Pentecost does not refer to speaking; it refers to feasting. That is what Pentecost was, to the Jews, a feast in the natural. But to that 120 believers that had waited there, in that upper room, it was more than a natural feast. To them, it was a spiritual feast. They had been hungering for righteousness, and now, they were being filled. Therefore, at this point let me ask you, Why did not the rest of the great multitude that followed Jesus receive this experience also? You say, Because they did not obey the instructions Jesus gave, “Tarry in Jerusalem until ye be endued with power from high.” Alright then, What right do any of you today have to expect to receive the Holy Ghost, aside from the instructions given in Acts 2:38? I hope you are getting my point. Jesus did not tell them where, in Jerusalem, they were to wait; that was their option. Neither did He tell them what day the promise would come; that was His option. But they were all in one accord, and in one place, when the time arrived. They all remembered the words of Jesus, and they believed Him. They believed He would send the promise of the Father, but there is no record, that any of them had any preconceived notions about what the experience, would be like, so what happened? Suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting (S-I-T-T-I-N-G). I just wanted to be sure you all caught that, for there are a lot of peculiar ideas around, about what position one must be in, in order to receive the Holy Ghost. The sitting position was their option also. Did they all hear the sound as of a rushing mighty wind blowing? Yes! Does that mean that everyone who receives the Holy Ghost will hear it? No! But some do, and that is God’s option. I read an article not long ago, where one fellow was completely convinced that a person could not receive the Holy Ghost unless they were lying on the floor, under the pews. He said, It takes that, to get the pride out of you. Maybe it took that to get the pride out of him, but there is no reason to make a doctrine of his own experience. My point is, There is no certain physical posture for receiving the Holy Ghost. God is looking only at your heart. There is no certain manifestation that we have any right to demand as proof, for every promise of God is conditioned upon our faith. We must believe that God will do what He said He would do when we do what we are instructed by His word to do. Furthermore, if you are going to require the same manifestations that those first 120 disciples had, then you cannot stop just with speaking in tongues. You will also have to hear the wind sound, and have the cloven tongues, as of fire, sit upon you. Now I hope you still remember the other scriptures we have already covered, for to the spiritual minded person, they prove beyond any shadow of doubt that to receive the Holy Ghost is to receive the fire also. It is not two separate experiences. But as we get back to what so many refer to as the initial evidence, let me remind you that when those disciples spoke in tongues, they were speaking in understandable languages, as many as 16 different ones. For all of those Jews that had gathered from these various places each heard someone speaking in the language of his home country. They were not just jabbering, like you might hear around the charismatic circles of today.


TEACHER AT WORK


Another thing we want to point out, is that, even though this experience was taking place for the first time, Peter did not have to go get a Rabbi to tell him what had happened to them. No! That teacher went right to work, doing just exactly what Jesus said He would do. Peter stood right up, and said, This is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel, and he went right ahead and quoted those scriptures from Joel, that were being fulfilled. How did he know that? The teacher that he had just received was calling things to his remembrance, and teaching him. Those disciples had walked with Jesus for 3½ years, and they had already witnessed the fact that He arose from the grave, but during those first 40 days after the resurrection, their very actions proved that they still had need of something more than just what they had learned from Jesus by their own natural understanding. Why do I say that? Simply because one time when they had not seen Jesus for a few days, Simon Peter, tired of waiting around, said, I am going fishing, and the others immediately said, we will go too. They just simply needed something to lean on. Jesus had been their crutch for 3½ years, and all they had to do was just follow along, but when He left them alone for a few days, they started to go back to what He had called them away from. They, like so many in our day, just simply did not have anything to hold them. They went back to their fishing, and fished all night long, but they did not catch anything, for they were fishing out of the will of God. Jesus knew where they were though, and came to them the next morning, saying, Children, have ye any meat? They answered, No. You know the story there, but I just used this in order to emphasize the fact that even though they had heard Jesus teach for 3½ years, and even though they believed Him, without the Holy Ghost, none of it meant very much to them. On the other hand, after what happened there in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost, they never again found themselves so bored that they had to go fishing, just to have something to do. When you read the book of Acts, you get the idea that they were all very busy from then on. Brother and Sister, the loving reality of having the living Christ within us is a blessed thing. That is why I have always enjoyed that very special song, “He lives, He lives, Christ Jesus lives today. He walks with me, and talks with me, along life’s narrow way. He lives, He lives, Salvation to impart, You ask me how I know He lives, He lives within my heart.” Now just speaking in tongues will not put that joy, hope, and confidence in your soul that gives you this living reality. That is why we can say today, that the evidence of the Holy Ghosts in a person’s life, is what He does to bring that life in line with the word of God.


OUR REST


The Holy Ghost is our spiritual Sabbath. When He comes in, we can rest from all our worries. We never have to worry any more about whether we are a child of God or not. We never have to work any more, trying to get save. Instead, our testimony is, I am saved. I am resting in God’s promise. Hallelujah! Praise His name. It is not the tongues that give the rest; it is His indwelling presence, and the revelation of the word of God that He imparts. I thank God for the tongues part, but I thank Him even more for the revelational benefit. The devil can take your tongues experience right away from you, and in some cases, people that have spoken in tongues in times past, don’t even want to hear any mention of it today. Do you know why? They had the tongues without the reality of the indwelling presence of the Holy Ghost. They never could find complete rest in the promise, and promises of God. Those who do, can say with the apostle John, Now are we the sons of God. We do not know exactly what we will be like, but we do know that when Christ comes for us we will be like Him. Praise God! We no longer have to hope that someday we will be saved. The Holy Ghost makes that a reality to us. This is the rest Isaiah spoke of in Chapter 28, when he said, “For with stammering lips and another tongue will I speak to this people. (What people? Jews, of course.) To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.” Those local Jews could not hear, but 3000 Jews from other areas of the world, that had come to Jerusalem for the Passover feast, certainly heard, believed, and obeyed. But tell me, Do you think God was establishing an evidence of speaking in tongues, just because those early disciples did? Furthermore, if what happened then, is to be looked upon as the initial evidence, and no one has the Holy Ghost unless they have that evidence, then you automatically eliminate thousands and thousands of people that you do not want to eliminate, for they have not spoken in an understandable language, as that 120 disciples did, there at Jerusalem. You just simply cannot listen to a lot of jabbering, and say, This is that which took place at the beginning. On the other hand, when you get it settled in your mind, that speaking in tongues, in any matter, does not prove the presence of the Holy Ghost, you can then appreciate the gift of tongues, without giving it pre-eminence over the other gifts of the Spirit. Prophesy is the same way. Some over zealous people will prophesy right out of their own human spirit, without the Holy Ghost having anything to do with it. Then you will hear some prophesy, by the unction and anointing of the Holy Ghost, that have never spoken in tongues. What does that do to your initial evidence? Saints: I hope more of you are beginning to realize that there are other gifts of the Spirit, other than speaking in tongues, and that they are divided to every believer according to the will of God, just like Paul said in 1st Corinthians 12:11.


SIGNS BUT NOT EVIDENCE


When reading Acts 2:4, you should pay particular attention to the way it is written. They were ALL filled with the Holy Ghost, AND (conjunction) began to speak with other tongues, AS THE SPIRIT GAVE THEM UTTERANCE. In Acts 4:31, you see another manifestation of the Holy Ghost, THEY SPAKE THE WORD OF GOD WITH BOLDNESS. Then in Acts 19:6, still another, THEY PROPHESIED. Brothers and Sisters: We are not saying anything, trying to rule out tongues as a gift of the Holy Ghost; we just want to help you get them in their right perspective. Baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ was a doctrine taught by those early disciples, but you can find no place where tongues was ever taught as a doctrine; they were only mentioned as a gift of the Holy Ghost along with the other gifts. Naturally, anyone who receives the Holy Ghost could speak in tongues, but so could they also interpret tongues, prophesy, speak a word of wisdom, or anything else that the Holy Ghost in them purposed for them to do. In dealing with the gifts of the Spirit, Paul wrote in 1st Corinthians 12:7, saying, “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to EVERY MAN (or woman) to profit withal.” Sooner or later the Holy Ghost will manifest His presence in a believer’s life, but we have no scriptural authority to demand any certain manifestation. Furthermore, if you yourself have to have some sign given to you, in order for you to know whether you have received this promise of God, then you are putting the cart before the horse. Does not the scriptures teach us that our faith must be the substance of that which we expect to receive from God? Why do you suppose Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, laid so much emphasis upon faith, if God was going to prove everything to us with signs and evidence? Turn over to the 11th chapter of Hebrews for just a few verses. “Now (when? Now.) Faith is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for, the evidence (You want evidence; a positive faith based upon the word of God is all the evidence we should need) of things not seen.” (When we are able to see or hear something with our natural eyes and ears, we do not need any faith to believe it.) (3) “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God.” Your evolutionists do not have faith in God; therefore, they cannot possibly understand anything about creation. We hear a lot of remarks about how Abel offered an acceptable sacrifice, and Cain did not, but have you noticed that Hebrews 11:4 says, “By FAITH Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which (By what? His faith) he obtained witness that he was righteousness.” Notice verse 6 now, “But without faith (Faith in what? The word of God.) it is IMPOSSIBLE TO PLEASE Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” I hope you caught all of that. Not only must one believe that there truly is a sovereign God, but they must also believe that He is a rewarder of those that seek after Him. A clearer understanding of that particular verse might come forth, if it had been translated, you must believe that He will keep His word. Some people cannot believe that they will receive what they prayed for, because they are not sure that God really will do what the Bible says He will. That is the same thing as not having faith. Others will read a promise from the Bible, but they are not sure whether it applies to them or not, therefore they can never exercise faith to lay hold upon that promise. How do we know whether it was written for the nation of Israel, and so forth. If you are wondering about Acts 2:38, it was spoken, and written to individuals that would believe the gospel, repent, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Of course it was spoken to Jewish individuals, because they were the ones that asked the question, “Men and brethren, What shall we do?” But later, when the gospel began to be preached to the Gentiles also, that same provision was right there for them. As a matter of fact, what Peter said in verse 39, included every Gentile that would ever believe and obey the gospel. Notice now, 38-39, “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of SINS, (plural) and ye shall (What?) Receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. (39) FOR THE PROMISE IS UNTO YOU, AND TO YOUR CHILDREN, AND TO ALL THAT ARE AFAR OFF, (That was we Gentiles.) Even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” Brother, that opened it up to every hungry soul that would ever be convicted by the Spirit of God. Trinity Pentecost will only read Acts 2:4, claim tongues as the initial evidence of the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and take their unmovable stand right there. The oneness element of Pentecost will include Acts 2:38-39, in their articles of faith along with Acts 2:4, but they, like the trinitarians, will read the rest of the chapter without ever seeing anything else in it. What about verse 42? How can they miss that? “And they (all those that believed and were baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.) continued steadfastly in the apostles’ DOCTRINE, and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” Verse 44 tells us that all that believed were together, and had all things common, and verse 46 tells us that they were all in one accord. There were no doctrinal differences. They all believed the same way. When one of the apostles stood up to present a revelated understanding from the word of God, he did not have to worry about half of the congregation getting up and stomping out of the assembly. Do you know why? They all had the Holy Ghost. He was in this one over here, doing the teaching, and he was in all those who were listening, saying, Amen. That is what John was referring to, over in 1st John 2:20, when he said, “But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.” We started out on John 3:16, that is the milk of the word, but the Holy Ghost will not allow a true believer to go through life sucking on a spiritual milk bottle. There comes a time when He says, Now, I am going to take your bottle away, and fix you a plate. I hope you understand my little illustration. When Peter began to quote Joel there, that day, those orthodox Jews knew they had read those words many times, but they never before knew what they meant. Yet here stood a man speaking with authority telling them what they meant, and the Spirit of conviction came upon them, and they were pricked in their hearts, and immediately they wanted to know what they could do about their condition. This was Peter’s first opportunity to use the keys to the kingdom, that had been committed to him. (Matthew 16:19) So after he had swung that sword of the Spirit for awhile, he was ready to unlock the gate and let those hungry souls in. On the other hand, those local big shots did learn a thing from all that they heard, for the Holy Ghost was not convicting them. From them, was taken away that which they seemed to have had. Up until then, they had sat in the seat of Moses, with, Thou shalt not, Thou shalt not, and every orthodox Jew was subject to those laws, but from this day and onward, those that believed and obeyed the gospel will no longer need to hear, Thou shalt not, for they now have something in them that causes them to say, I don’t want to, I don’t want to, instead. God’s laws are written in the hearts of true believers, and that is why the scriptures say, that we become a law unto ourselves. When we do wrong, the Holy Ghost within us, will let us know right away, that we have done wrong. No! We don’t have to go somewhere, and get saved, all over again; it is just a matter of being repentant, and asking the Father’s forgiveness.


ETERNAL LIFE


Contrary to what an awful lot of people believe, once a person has been truly sealed by the Holy Ghost, they could never be lost again. That is where the reality of eternal security of the believer comes in. You cannot be spiritually unborn any more than you can be unborn in the natural. In the natural, a person can die at any time after birth, but in the spiritual, one who is born again by a spiritual birth can never die spiritually, for their new birth has given them eternal life. But, Bro. Jackson: Can a person that is truly born again still commit sin? Brothers & Sisters: The new birth experience is not an automatic exemption from all wrong deeds in the flesh. If it was, Paul would not have spent so much time admonishing the various assemblies on proper Christian conduct. What you must remember, is that all of these instructions in the New Testament epistles were written to born again believers. They were the only ones that needed to know how to bring their flesh under subjection to the recreated spirit within; and live a life of holiness unto the Lord. Read the 5th chapter of 1st Corinthians, and you will hear Paul say, Deliver that man into the hands of Satan for the destruction of his flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. That tells me that he is a son of God, standing in need of chastening for his wrong doing. You do not have to be afraid to face the truth, if your heart is right with God, and if your heart is not right with God, just covering up the truth will not help you any, for God is only looking at your heart. He knows what you are saying and doing, but your final destiny is determined by what is within you.


WHY RESTORATION WAS NECESSARY


Now in order to clear up, and shed light upon some of our remarks in this message, I want to give a little summary of what happened in between Acts 2:4 in that first age, and Azusa Street in this age. The church did not lose the Holy Ghost all at once, and neither was the Holy Ghost restored back to the church in its fulness all at once. What those hungry saints at Azusa Street mission received was the same Spirit that was received in Acts 2:4, but not in the same measure. In that first age, believers received the Holy Ghost, in its fulness of all the attributes; therefore, their revelation was pure, and there was no cause for disagreement about doctrine, and the manifestations of the Spirit, and it remained so, as long as those first generation watch dogs of the faith were still alive. They had no tares among them, for Satan could not get in to sow the seed. All of those men that were in that upper room on the day of Pentecost were ever watchful over God’s heritage, but they did not live forever. Somewhere in between about 66 A.D., and 90 A.D., Satan got his foot in the door and began to sow some seed of discord among believers. I was just reading in the antinicean father’s commentary where it was speaking of a certain person rising up to speak against water baptism, even as early as the 2nd century, and the writer of the article, called that person a scorpion. Do you know why? Because such people as this are afraid of water. Scorpions, centipedes, and that type of creatures are dry land creatures. He said that anyone that could get such a revelation would have to be a scorpion. But the first goal of Satan was to get rid of the primary doctrine of the Christian church, which was their one God revelation. Gentiles had always believed in pagan gods by the dozens, a god for everything, instead of One God for all things, so this is where Satan began his campaign. He just began to send out certain men that very gradually sowed seed of false teaching among believers, a little here, a little there, and a little somewhere else. Then as people began to open up their minds to some of these different ideas, the revelational attribute of the Holy Ghost began to be weakened in the church. Therefore, the Holy Ghost did not just leave them all at once. Actually it took place over a period of about 500 years, going into the Dark Ages. That is just about the same length of time that God has used in restoring the Holy Ghost attributes back into the church. But even though the Holy Ghost with all of His potential is being restored back into the church, there is still one great difference. After those tares were allowed to get in, they will remain in the assembly of the believers right up to the very end. We know that from the parable of Matthew 13. Also, I want to say this, the Holy Ghost never did completely leave the church, for He was always present to preserve life, to keep the church in existence. He just withheld His attributes, and allowed the people as a whole to have what they were looking for. But for the most part, what was called, the church, was not the church at all. It was mostly tares. A tare is not necessarily a bad person; they are just imitators of genuine Christians. They have another spirit, but some of them, as far as outward appearances, live just as clean as any Christian. Nevertheless, this is what took control of Christianity, or we will say, of the universal church, and led her into the Dark Ages. But praise God, we are living in the age of restoration, and have been privileged to witness many of the last phases of God’s restoration back to the church, what that 2nd generation of Christianity began to let slip away from them. She will eventually be restored completely to her spiritual heritage, and the Holy Ghost will again manifest all the fulness of His many attributes. We already have all of the major doctrines restored, and we are standing right on the threshold of seeing His power restored also. The Pentecostal systems, including the Assemblies of God, Pilgrim Holiness, Pentecostal Church of God, UPC and whatever else there is out there, are the last bunch of harlots God has to deal with. He left those other systems years ago, after they carried the torch of restoration light for their period, and then went to seed on the revelation God gave their founder.


Brothers and Sisters: We are a privileged people, to be allowed to witness what we have in these past decades. We have seen the rise and fall of many men that at one time had a genuine anointing of the Spirit of God upon their ministry. We have seen the great crusaders of men like Billy Graham, Oral Roberts, T. L. Osborne, and many others. We have heard the pros and cons of many doctrines of the scriptures, and many of us were privileged to witness God’s vindication of a certain little man called of God to set those doctrines back in their proper order in the church. Yet even among those who supposedly have been restored to the apostolic faith of our spiritual forefathers, we still find a lot of people following the signs, and searching for the evidence of the presence of the Holy Ghost. Many of those that seemed to uphold the truth that we stand for, and that spoke in tongues, and prophesied, have now turned aside to follow something else, so I ask you plainly, Are you still searching for some kind of evidence, or will you just simply believe the word of God, cast your care upon Him, and allow Him to manifest the Holy Ghost in your life according to His own sovereign will? This is a subject that could be stretched out for many, many services, for the scriptures that could be used are almost unlimited, but how much scriptural proof do believers require? Then how could any amount of scriptural proof help a person that has no confidence in the word of God? I believe we have sufficiently shown, by the scriptures, that the only evidence of the presence of the Holy Ghost that can be trusted is the kind of life that is projected by those that He truly resides within. If He is in you, He will set a standard for you to measure up to, and it will put your life right in line with the word of God. It may take a long time for Him to get us free from all our former teaching we received out there in spiritual Babylon, but with Him, time is not the important factor. He is after a pure product that can be presented to the Lord Jesus Christ spotless, and without wrinkle or blemish of any kind. He knows what He is doing, so trust Him. May God bless you all. Amen!

Holiness vs. Tradition, Part 2

WE ARE RE-PRINTING THE HOLINESS V/S TRADITION MESSAGE; WHICH WAS FIRST PRINTED IN JANUARY 1981. THIS IS THE BEST WAY TO ANSWER A LOT OF QUESTIONS THAT SOME HAVE ON THEIR MIND. THIS WAS A MESSAGE THAT PROVED TO BE VERY HELPFUL THIRTY YEARS AGO; AND THE SCRIPTURAL TRUTH THAT IS CONTAINED IN THE MESSAGE IS AS IMPORTANT TO TRUE SAINTS TODAY AS IT WAS BACK THEN. IT IS TOO LONG FOR ONE ISSUE, SO WE ARE MAKING THE TYPE A LETTLE LARGER AND USING TWO PAPERS FOR IT. WE ARE STARTING THIS ISSUE EXACTLY WHERE THE JANUARY ISSUE LEFT OFF.

RIGHTLY DIVIDING
THE SCRIPTURES

In Romans 13:8, Paul says, “Owe no man any thing, but to love one another; for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law,” and some have taken that verse to mean that a Christian should never finance anything, nor borrow any money. I have actually had people say to me, Bro. Jackson, I have never borrowed money in my life; I just do not believe in it. If any of you feel that way, let me ask you this; on what scripture in the Bible do you base such a conviction? I hope you have more than Romans 8:13. Maybe some of you, who might feel that way, have never had to borrow money. That is well and good; God bless you, but I am one that has had to. I will always remember one time, when I wanted to put a furnace in my house, and my salary in the church was very small, so I knew I would have to borrow a little money, if I was going to do that job. I was praying about it, for I always tried never to do anything that would be in excess of what I saw my future potential to be. As I continued to pray about it, one night, I had a dream. I had said, Lord, you know what I need, and you know when I should do this, and in the dream, I saw myself standing in the Corydon, Indiana State Bank, when Mr. Miller was still alive. I was standing just outside his office door, waiting, and I could hear him talking to another person. After that man left his office, Mr. Miller said, Raymond: Come in. I saw myself go in and sit down, and I could hear myself telling him what I wanted to do, and how much money it would take. When I finished, he said, Raymond, when you get ready to do it, come on in. That was the dream, and it was some time after that, before I felt that I should go ahead with the project, but the day I went to the bank to see Mr. Miller, that is exactly what happened, just like I saw it in the dream. I do not owe the bank for that furnace now though. To owe no man nothing, means, do not borrow, without paying it back. Furthermore, you should pay it back on the contract basis, and not wait until your creditor catches up with you and demands payment. You do not have to take my word for this; just open your Bible to Matthew 25:15-27, and read the parable of the talents, and you will see what Jesus said of the slothful servant that should have at least invested his master’s money with the exchangers, so that he could have received interest from the use of his money. In other words, they could have loaned the money and received interest, (usury.) That just goes to show, that borrowing and loaning is a part of the economics of our society. What we have to realize is that there are always certain people who will twist every truth of the Bible, trying to get someone else under bondage. It is all right to borrow money, or to finance a purchase, but it is not all right to fail to keep up with the contract agreement. Now, do not worry about what will happen if the rapture takes place before you finish paying for something you have bought; you are not going to take it with you. Some people ask questions like that.

CHECK YOUR CLOTHING

Brothers and sisters: True holiness is more than just a shell that we put on. True holiness is perfected, when you are inside, what you appear to be on the outside, if what you appear to be on the outside is in harmony with God’s principles of righteousness. Raymond Jackson has his faults, but by the grace of God, I try to keep them subdued, so that they do not rule my life, nor cause me to become a stumbling stone to you. My desire is to be a stepping stone that may enable some to draw closer to the Lord. It is one thing to have faults, but there is something wrong with your experience in the Lord, if you do not appreciate His grace enough to try to better yourself. We should never allow anything to become an obsession with us. Take clothing, for instance. We are living in an age when clothing has become an obsession with many people who profess to be Christians. You do not need to have on a new dress or a new suit every time you go some place, and certainly, Christian people do not need to be trying to keep up with the styles of the world. Back some time ago the miniskirts were popular. The worldly crowd started that fad, but it crept right into the churches. All you could see was women’s knees, everywhere you went. Then the styles changed, from extremely short to extremely long, but what did they do then? As the skirt length got longer, the blouse necks got lower and lower. Everything is designed with a sex slant, to grab the lustful attention of the opposite sex, and men are just as bad as the women, with their clothing. It makes me wonder, what will they come up with next? One thing that has become popular as the women’s skirts got longer is the slits up the sides. At first glance you may think a woman is modestly dressed, and then find out that her skirt has 3 slits that run practically all the way up. We encountered such a sight on our way into Canada recently. Walking down through the Toronto airport terminal was a nicely dressed man, with what seemed to be a very modestly dressed woman, walking by his side. Her skirt length was about half way between her knees and her ankles, and at a distance you could find no fault with her appearance, but as they came on in and sat down, it became very obvious that the front panel was the only thing that hid the woman’s nakedness. When she sat down across from us, the whole underside of her body was exposed. All you can do is just bow your head to keep from looking at such as that. It is all a design of the devil, in this sex crazy age. Not all of those skirts are slit that far up, but if they are slit at all, it identifies with the spirit of that thing. Let me hasten to say this, now; Do not become legalistic about this, for I am sure that any right thinking person will know the difference between this kind of skirt, and others that may have always had a little ½ inch or 1 inch gap where the seams are, on the sides. There is nothing that can be done about how people of the world dress themselves, but Christians do not have to identify with them. Christians ought not to display themselves in such a way as to draw sexy glances from the opposite sex, and you do not need a list of do’s and do not’s; all you need is some Holy Ghost convictions.

OPEN TOED SHOES

Now I want to call your attention to another extreme. Some preachers in times past, have preached so hard against women displaying themselves, sexually, that they have even forbade women to wear shoes with the open toe. They feel that a woman’s toes sticking out the end of her shoes is displaying herself in the wrong way. I sometimes wonder, just how silly some preachers will get before the end? I have never seen a woman’s big toe yet; that I felt would entice anyone sexually. I have always felt that any preacher who preaches like that should be prepared to go into Africa, India, as well as other places, and furnish shoes for all of those women. Saints: It is not whether your toe shows or not, when it comes to this thing of holiness. There are Christians in the world, who have never owned a pair of shoes in their whole life, and just to have a pair of little sandals would be the most that they could ever hope for. Could you say those dear souls are not holy? Shoes are just like anything else. They can reveal a lot about the individuals who are able to have any kind they may choose, but you can never set up a standard, and enforce it around the world. That brings us right back to our text. “Hast thou faith? Have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth.” I would never try to get any brother or sister to violate their convictions on these issues of holiness, but I do encourage every one of you to strive to bring your convictions into harmony with the word of God. If you believe that it is wrong to wear a wedding ring, it would be wrong for you to wear one, if you did it just because I said it was not wrong. But just as Rebekah put something on her head, showing that she was espoused, you owe it to yourself to display something, showing that you are married. Otherwise the man on the street sees you young married sisters, the same as any other young virgin. The ring could prevent a lot of ideas on his part. I wear a wedding ring myself, and I do it mainly for that reason, to show that I am a married man. I was asked to take it off one time, and for the sake of the preacher who asked me, I did it, while I was in his pulpit. But within three days, some of his people started coming to me, Bro. Jackson: Is it wrong to wear a wedding ring? That kind of puts you in a corner; you cannot be a hypocrite, yet you do not want to cause trouble in a man’s church, so I said, If you believe it is wrong, it is wrong for you, but to me, it is not wrong. Before long, that preacher’s wife told my wife, to tell me, to go ahead and wear my ring. The next time I went back there, you could see wedding rings all around the place, but deep in his heart, the preacher himself was stubborn. You know what the Bible says about stubbornness. That is what happened with King Saul, that made him go against the word of God, and here is what the prophet Samuel, had to say about it. (1st Sam. 15:22-23) “And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and STUBBORNNESS is as INIQUITY and IDOLATRY. (Notice what a severe penalty he received.) Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, He hath also rejected thee from being king.” A person should have convictions that are based upon the word of God, but stubbornness, and manmade traditions can never stand in the place of true holiness with God. Hast thou faith? Have it to thyself before God. If you have trouble with your family, and your old friends, let it be because of a genuine conviction from the word of God, and not just because of something you may have heard me say. I hope you get the point.

HYPOCRITES – BLIND GUIDES

We have all read 2nd Corinthians 7:1, where Paul wrote these words, “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, PERFECTING HOLINESS in the fear of God” and I suppose every extreme theory of holiness might have been instituted because someone read that particular verse. The real problem seems to come from carnal minds which read certain scriptures, then stretch the truth of that scripture, just like a rubber band, until it breaks and slaps them in the face. Every rubber band had a certain amount of elasticity, and within its limits, it will hold things together, compactly. However when you stretch it beyond those limits, it breaks, and whatever it is holding together, falls apart, many times, making a mess. That is exactly how a scriptural truth is. When it is applied within its scope, it will serve a good purpose in the plan of God, but when it is stretched beyond its true application, and carnal minds are allowed to play with it, sooner or later, you have a mess for someone to straighten up. We definitely are to be about the business of perfecting holiness both in our bodies as well as our spirits, just like this verse says, for without holiness, no man shall see the Lord. But like I have said over and over again, True holiness is a relationship between every genuine Christian and God; and it cannot necessarily be measured by man’s standards of holiness. There are some obvious areas in individual lives, where a lack of holiness can be detected, but there is no possible way that we can look at people, and declare that they are holy, for outward appearances and ways of life are very deceptive. If holiness was based only on outward appearances, then Jesus did wrong when he spoke to the scribes and Pharisees as He did. Listen. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, HYPOCRITES! For ye are like unto whited sepulchers, (whitewashed tombs) which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so YE ALSO OUTWARDLY APPEAR RIGHTEOUS UNTO MEN, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” (Matt. 23:27-28) Do you see what I mean? He could speak to them like that, only because He was able to look inside their outer shell, and see what their heart condition was like. We have people, supposedly in this end time message of restored truth, who travel around from place to place, measuring holiness by what they see. Regardless of what part of the world they may be in, their measuring standards are the same. They dwell on the length of hair, the length of dresses, whether you wear jewelry or not, whether you speak in tongues, how high you jump when a fast song is sung, whether the men wear neckties, and whether the women wear shoes that cover their toes. Brothers and sisters, they have a list of do’s and don’ts a mile long, but they do not all dwell on the same things. They all have certain main points that they pick on. If they can get you to subscribe to their formula of holiness, you are a true child of God in their mind, but if you do not agree with them on every point, they will put you out of the family of God. At least in their mind, you are out. But listen, while I read another verse from this same chapter of Matthew’s gospel. Verse 23, “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, HYPOCRITES! For ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, (in other words they followed their own little set of rules, which were alright as far as they went) and have OMITTED the WEIGHTIER matters of the law, JUDGMENT, (JUST JUDGMENT) MERCY, and FAITH: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.” In other words, if our heart is right with God, we will not dwell on certain outward ways and appearances, and neglect other things that are just as important. Verse 24 applies to those who do. Jesus just looked at them, and said, “Ye BLIND GUIDES, which strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.” It is not my responsibility to judge the eternal destiny of anyone; that is in the hands of God, but to those scribes and Pharisees who placed so much importance on their outward appearance, when their heart was full of deceit and ungodliness, Jesus said, verse 33, “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?” I know that is strong language, but it was Jesus Himself that made the application, and He made it applicable to men whose hearts are so vile that they would destroy another man’s image and testimony, if he refused to bow to their set of rules.

CHURCH BUILT
UPON WHAT?

Some of you may think I am speaking a little too plain about these things, but let me tell you something, the hour is late. Our time for playing around with the scriptures is running out. I have never said anything to deliberately hurt anyone. God forbid that I ever would, but there has to be a dividing line drawn somewhere, so people may have an opportunity to get their eyes opened, and see why they are following whoever they may be following. I have said many times, and I am going to say again this morning, Please do not follow my flesh, regardless of how much you may like me as a person. Without a revelation, you will miss God completely, even if you do and say all the right things as you go through life. Upon what did Jesus tell the apostle Peter that He would build His church? I know there are ten thousand different opinions as to what that rock is, but I hope all of you are able to see that He was speaking of the rock of revelation. He had just asked His disciples a question, “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?” Some of them replied, John the Baptist, others said that the people thought He was Elias, or Elijah, and that some thought He could even be Jeremiah, or one of the other old prophets. After hearing them report what the multitudes were saying about Him, He looked them in the face and said, “BUT WHOM SAY YE THAT I AM?” Peter always seemed to be the quick one to reply, or to act, so he blurted out, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” We are in the 16th chapter of Matthew, and in verse 17, “Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” That simply means that no earthly man revealed such a thing to Peter. He knew it because the Spirit of God had revealed it to him. This caused Jesus to say, “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock (this rock of revelation, not this rock Peter, as some have understood it) I will build my church; (the rest of this verse gives a clue to understanding what the rock is, for anything that is built upon any man is subject to have the gates of hell prevail against it, but that which is a revelation to you is such a part of you, that the devil and all his angels can never take it away from you.) And the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” Those who have the word of God hid in their hearts by a spiritual revelation are not at the mercy of the devil and all of his angels, but anyone who is just following some man, without a personal revelation to stabilize them, are as helpless as a fly in a tub of molasses. The devil can run them up any old road he chooses to.

DO NOT PLAY
WITH TRUTH

Now let me ask you, Are you in this end time message of restored truth, or are you just trying to play around with it like the denominational theologians play with their theories. This is not a message that you can play with. This message that so many people claim to have heard, from the mouth of God’s prophet messenger to this age, will place a demand upon your life, and require you to meet Bible standards in a holy walk with God. All who play around with it, get hurt. Many have been hurt already. Some of them have gone past the point of no return. They have departed from the truth that Bro. Branham stood for, deified him, and given him the place that only the Lord Jesus Christ could ever have, and because of this, God must deal with them as idolaters. To a great extent, their conscience is already seared, as with a hot iron. They are branded, and regardless of who they may be, they should be treated according to Paul’s instructions in the 5th chapter of 1st Corinthians. As we begin reading with verse 11, I want you to pay attention to what is written here. “But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man THAT IS CALLED A BROTHER be a fornicator, or covetous, or an IDOLATER, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one, no, not to eat. For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? Do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth THEREFORE PUT AWAY FROM AMONG YOURSELVES THAT WICKED PERSON.” Brothers and sisters, that is plain enough. Paul says, do not keep company with such people; do not even eat with them. Many such people have been blindly led into such a place; therefore, there is hope for them if they will come to their senses, and return unto the word of God, but there are others that have gone too far. They will never return. You could preach to them until you become grey headed, and all they will do is look at you with a smirk on their face, as if to say, Preacher; God gave me this revelation. That is exactly what those idolaters will tell you, if you question them as to why they have elevated Bro. Branham into such a place of deity. I have heard them say, you have to have a revelation of who he was. Saints! I praise God because I do have a revelation of who he was. He was a man, just like you and me, in the sense that he needed a savior. But he had a call of God upon his life that no other man among us had. He was commissioned to put us back in the Bible, where we could see just exactly what a Christian is supposed to be. He did what he was called to do, and he will receive his reward for it, in that day when God rewards His saints. God will not hold him accountable for the extremes that some have gone to with the words he preached. They have become idolaters by their own choice; they become subject to be dealt with according to Paul’s instructions. Saints, it is bad when we lose fellowship with people because of the truth we stand for, but I would certainly hate to be deprived of fellowship because some crazy, devil idea had grabbed hold of me, and true believers had to put me out.

WORK OUT
YOUR SALVATION

Look with me, at some other instructions that Paul gave to believers in Thessalonica. 1st Thessalonians 5:21, “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good, (That lets me know, that somewhere in our Christian lives, we have to reach a point where we know what good principles are.) Abstain from all appearance of evil (that means, abstain from those things that God calls evil, not just every little whim of some carnal minded person you may respect) and the very God of peace sanctify you wholly: and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Speaking of abstaining from every appearance of evil, reminds me of something that happened years ago, out in the state of Missouri. I was invited to a young couple’s home for an evening meal, and the young man was one of these fellows that are always doing some kind of bodily exercise. He spent fabulous sums of money, buying exercise equipment, trying to keep his muscles built up. He was very careful about eating the right foods, and taking vitamins, and all of that. When he found out that I drink coffee, what do you think he did? He went over to a cabinet, took out a bottle that had some little yellow pills in it, and said, Bro. Jackson, I do not mean to be offensive, but according to research findings, each cup of coffee has an amount of caffeine in it, which is equivalent to one of these caffeine tablets. Now what would be the difference between you drinking a cup of coffee, or just taking one of these caffeine tablets? I knew what he was driving at, this was not the first time I had encountered this sort of thing. I just took a little time to think, and then I said to him, God knew when He made the coffee tree that some people would have a nervous type stomach, and coffee would not set well with them. But he also knew that some other people would have a stomach that could consume a barrel of coffee, without any adverse affects. These people might enjoy the taste of it, and also appreciate the warm stimulating feeling that a cup of coffee can give them on a cold winter morning. As a matter of fact, I learned to drink coffee years ago, when my sister and I had to walk 3 miles through the woods, going to school, on those cold winter mornings. A cup of hot coffee helped a lot. I have been drinking it ever since, and it has not affected my salvation one bit, and I do not believe it hurts my physical body either. If I thought it did, I would quit drinking it. Furthermore, if you think it would hurt you, then do not drink it, but please do not try to tie it to holiness. When the apostle Paul wrote to those Christians at Philippi, and told them to work out their own salvation with fear and trembling, it was this matter of holiness before God that he was referring to. We all know that there is only one way for lost sinners to be justified from their state of unbelief, that is, by faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. We do not work that out; it has already been worked out for us, there at Calvary. But we do have to work out the affairs of our life, after we have believed, to bring our lives in line with the word of God. If you do not work out your own salvation on this question of holiness, you will always be under bondage to the devil, trying to follow some man. Brothers and sisters, what I am trying to get across to you, is that holiness is a personal relationship between every true believer and God; it is not just a doctrine with a set or rules to follow. Of course there are some guidelines to get you started on your Christian walk with God, but then, you must have your own convictions about what is right or wrong for your own personal life, and a lot of that is based upon the culture of your own society. When it comes to water baptism, for the remission of your sins that is the same, no matter where you are. It requires you to repent first, and then be immersed in water, not sprinkled, and just pouring a little water on your head is not good enough either. You must be put under the water. That is the only way your baptism can be a type of burial. When you bury something, you put it under. Now God has one formula for receiving the Holy Ghost, (Acts 2:38) and there is no other formula, so you do not have to work that out. You just believe the word of God, and obey this one formula from the heart, and it then becomes God’s responsibility to give you the seal which is the Holy Ghost.

HOLY GHOST,
NOT AN OPTION

When you receive the Holy Ghost, there is no certain manifestation that you have any right to expect. You may speak in tongues; then again, you may not. You may fall out under the power of the Spirit of God, but then again, you may not. It is up to God to give you the Holy Ghost with whatever manifestation pleases Him. The only important thing is that you receive the Holy Ghost, not how you receive. The Holy Ghost is not an option in salvation. You do not have the new birth until you receive it. That is why Paul wrote as he did to the Romans. Look in the 8th chapter of Romans, beginning with verse 8, “So then they that are in the flesh (without the Holy Ghost) cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. NOW IF ANY MAN HAVE NOT THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST, HE IS NONE OF HIS. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But IF the SPIRIT of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken (make alive, raise from the dead) your mortal bodies BY HIS SPIRIT THAT DWELLETH IN YOU.” That should help you understand why I said, The Holy Ghost is not optional. It is the Holy Ghost that places us in the body of Christ, and if we are not in that body, we are not of Him. Look at 1st Corinthians 12:13. “For by ONE SPIRIT (the Holy Ghost) are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one SPIRIT.” Brothers and sisters, we are either in the body of Christ, or we are not; it is as simple as that. If we are in that body, we have the Spirit of God in us, to enable us to have a holy walk with Him. But if we do not have that Holy Ghost experience, we are not in the body of Christ and whatever amount of outward holiness that may be displayed is just a shell, and God will not accept it. Perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord is to be constantly moving toward a Bible picture of holiness, not a human picture. We titled this message, Holiness versus Tradition, to keep the title simple, but what we are dealing with is true Bible holiness in contrast to man made traditional holiness. One is by the Spirit of God in true believers, and the other is by human zeal. That which is by the Spirit of God will allow for circumstances, but that which is by human zeal is rigid and unbending, without mercy, and without just judgment. It is only for an outward show.

DRESS CONSERVATIVE

We have already touched on clothing, and I do not mean to be repetitious, but there are yet a couple of things I want to say. As you travel around the world, you become very conscious of the fact, that in every continent, there is a traditional type of clothing that identifies those of that continent. They are known by that certain style the world over. Therefore when you go into their part of the world, and convert them to Christ, are you to touch their dress style? Only that which might tend to draw immoral, suggestive glances from the opposite sex. Only then, would you interfere with their traditional style of dress. When Jesus Christ came into the world, He was manifested to the Jewish race. His natural genealogy was traced back through Jewish parents, therefore He did not dress like a Turk, nor like someone from the Orient; He dressed Himself according to the traditional life style, and customary dress of the Jewish people at that time. He did not dress Himself in such a way that when he walked down the street, His clothes made Him stand out like a sore thumb. If you did not know who He was, you could have taken Him for any average Jewish man walking down the street. I am certain of one thing though, He was dressed conservatively. Now when we say conservative, it must be understood like this; whatever the traditional custom in clothing may be, in any nation, God will accept that. When Paul or Peter spoke of apparel, they were dealing with fads that pop up for 6 months or a year or so, until another one is introduced to take its place. The devil works in those things, most of the time to display the human body in some sex suggestive way. People who design things like mini skirts, or skirts with slits up the sides, or promote the image of the unbuttoned blouse, or the low neck blouses, do not do that to portray morality, decency and godliness; it is just the opposite of that. Therefore every woman who wears clothing like that, no matter how pure in heart she might be, is looked upon by degenerate mankind just like any woman of ill fame. If your style of dress identifies with that kind of image, what else can you expect? That is why I do not hesitate to say, No born again child of God will submit themselves to such an image as that. Just plain common sense is all it takes to know what conservative clothing is, in whatever part of the world a Christian may be living for God in. Over the years, living standards and modes of travel have brought about changes in traditional customs of dress; that is understandable. But that kind of change will always have a consistent pattern; it will not be one thing today and something different six months from now. In other words, just for an example we will think about the American style of dress, back around the turn of the century, when the automobile first came on the scene. Up until that time people rode horses, or in a buggy or carriage of some sort, that required a different style of clothing than what we are used to now, since most all of our transportation is motorized, and on good roads. The Amish and the Mennonite people are an example of those who refuse to change with the times. You will see them going down the road in a horse drawn buggy, where everyone else is driving a modern day automobile. You will usually see, in that buggy, a man dressed in black, with a low profile, wide brimmed hat, and the same style shirt and trousers that was worn in Holland, back in 1400. Their ancestors came out of the Dark Ages with convictions against worldliness, against worldly appearance, world fashions in dress, and everything else that seemed like worldliness to them. In almost 500 years, they have not changed their style of dress. They will not own an automobile, or any kind of farm tractor or equipment, and they will not even have electric lights in their houses. They are not all like that, not that strict anymore, but many of them still are. They will not even have window shades.

JUMPING OVER
BIBLE TRUTH

I heard the testimony of an old Mennonite brother, back in the late 1950’s. He told how a certain physical condition had caused him to go to one of those salvation and divine healing meetings. I have forgotten who the particular evangelist was, but in that meeting, God got hold of him, healed his body, saved his soul, and filled him with the Holy Ghost. Then God got hold of his whole family, and saved them, but his testimony later, was that back on the farm, he was plowing corn one day, with an old horse drawn cultivator, and he could look out across the fields and see other farmers with their high powered tractors, plowing acres of corn in one day’s time. It made him feel that he was at a crossroads in life. He just stopped right in the middle of the field to rest his horses, got off the seat, and took off his hat, wiping his brow, and saying in his heart, O Lord, if this condition was only changed. At that moment, he heard an audible voice speak to him; Go tell your people wherein they are wrong. It scared him. He thought someone had slipped up on him, and heard him talking to himself. He looked all around and did not see anyone, but then, he heard the same thing again; Go tell your people wherein they are wrong. Then he knew that God had spoken to him, so he did exactly that. He went right back to that old Mennonite Church, took his seat, and waited for his time to give testimony and read scripture, according to their custom. When he finished giving his testimony, and telling them they were wrong about this, wrong about that, and wrong about tractors, electric lights, automobiles, and so forth; they held court right there in the church, and voted to throw him out. Now the point is this, they were so old fashioned in their lifestyle, that God could no longer talk to them, yet you could not say that they were not a holy looking people, from their outward appearance. That is why I said, you can get into a holy looking shell, and miss God altogether. In other words, you can get yourself so separated, that even God will have to pass you up. That may sound strange, but that is exactly what happens when individuals, or groups, just pick out certain things, and make a doctrine out of it. They always reach a point where they will jump over Biblical truth, in order to enforce their doctrine. The Shaker movement was a good example of that. They had what you and I call the Holy Ghost, but they got off course. They secluded themselves into colonies, practiced confession of sins, and community of goods, which you could not say is unscriptural, but they went on to demand celibacy, and equality of the sexes, which definitely required them to jump over many scriptures. For instance, did not the apostle Paul tell Timothy, that the younger women should marry, bear children, and guide the house, without giving the adversary an occasion to speak reproachfully? Did he not also tell him that the women should learn in silence, with all subjection, and that they should not teach, nor have authority over any man? Yet this society of Shakers, or Shaking Quakers pushed women into roles of leadership. They had no formal statement of beliefs, but starting out in America with only a handful of members, somewhere around 1780, and by the middle of the 19th century they had grown into eighteen colonies, with around six thousand members. History records that the Shaker movement was the most successful experiment in religious communitarian living in the New World. They were noted for their neat, well planned, and peaceful villages; their pure architecture and fine craftsmanship; their progressive practices in agriculture, and their concern for social betterment. They suffered persecution at times, because of their peculiar ways, but it was all in vain. They had jumped over too many scriptures, therefore God allowed the movement to die out. In 1959 there were only twenty nine known members of this society. It just goes to show, that when you leave the scriptures, no matter how holy you may appear, the day will come when you reach the end of your rope. Shakertown, Kentucky, today, is nothing more than a memorial of bygone days.

TOO HOLY
FOR GOD TO LEAD

It seems that many people get to feeling so holy, and so close to God, they begin to feel that they do not need a scriptural foundation for what they decide to make a doctrine of. That was the case with these Shakers, on the issue of celibacy. In the year 1758, a twenty two year old young lady joined the society, which was then under the leadership of James Wardley and his wife Jane. This young lady was Ann Lee, a textile mill worker. Four years later she married a man by the name of Abraham Standerin, a blacksmith, by whom she had four children, which all died in infancy. Hers was an unhappy marital experience complicated by severe illness, and during these trying times the conviction grew upon her that “concupiscence” was a cardinal sin. (That, of course, is the condition of man and woman living together physically, intimately as man and wife.) She became convinced in her mind that this was strictly wrong, and that it was the cause of sin in the world in the first place. It was because of her influence that the discipline of this sect became so severe. But it was while she and some others were in prison, for disturbing the congregation of a church during worship services, in the year 1773, that she claimed to have a vision whereby she was divinely ordained to complete the mission of Jesus Christ, on earth. This would require her to repudiate, or abstain from every lust of the flesh. Her testimony was so powerful, that she was accepted as an inspired prophetess, and appointed leader of an order known as “The Millennial Church.” Ten months later, in the year 1774, seeking freedom of worship, Ann Standerin, with seven devoted followers, sailed for America. Coming from England to America, they settled first in New York, where they waited for an opportunity to open their testimony on the shores of the New World. Their big opportunity did not come until the year 1780, and Ann Standerin died four years later, but she left behind, American born converts that expanded the movement until it reached its peak with about 6 thousand members, before it started its decline. During that time they spread into Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky, as well as various parts of New England. They rebelled against the established church, because it condoned marriage. Saints! When you start establishing teaching like that, no matter how holy you may appear to be, you are stepping over the Bible to do what you are doing. What did the apostle Paul say, in Hebrews 13:4? “Marriage is honorable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.” That scripture meant nothing to them; they converted whole families to their teaching. But sad to say, many times they only converted either the husband, or the wife, and this broke up that home. The men lived in separate dormitories from the women, and the children were placed in nurseries. There was no home life, as we know it. Brothers and sisters: when you go to that extreme in your holiness, you have left the Bible completely. God told Adam and Eve, to be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it. Then, after the flood of Noah’s day, God spoke to Noah and his sons, and said unto them, be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and the fear of you shall be upon every other living creature. It was at this time, that God told Noah and his sons, Every living thing that moveth upon the earth shall be meat for you, but do not eat flesh that still has the blood in it. This last part is for you that believe it is wrong to eat meat. It does not matter whether you eat meat or not, but if you teach, abstaining from meats, as a doctrine, you have left the Bible to do so. God never reaches into the leadership realm of movements like these, to pull out men who will stand for truth. No. He goes down the line until He finds some little fellow who is hungry for the truth, and then He has someone He can lead, by His Spirit. That is the reason John the Baptist, did not come from the ranks of the Scribes and Pharisees. That is also why the messenger of this age, did not come from the high ranks of oneness Pentecost; they had already settled down upon their statement of beliefs, and locked all the doors and windows so tightly, that God could no longer speak to them. Then, when Bro. Branham did come on the scene to fulfill his calling, Pentecost looked at him with a big bug-eyed look, and wondered how he could be of God, since he did not come from among their ranks. They thought they already had all that God had to give, and they tried to lock the devil out, but that will not work for anyone. If you are going to be led by God in these last days: for goodness sakes, leave the door open. When you lock the devil out, you lock God out too. But if you will keep the door of your life open to God, He will make a fool out of the devil when he comes around.

HOW DENOMINATIONS
BECOME SUCH

Did you ever take time to think about what causes a denomination in the first place? Every denomination that has ever been started has been the result of God reaching down into some old dead system, and dealing with the hungry soul of some individual that did not lock up his own heart’s door along with the system he was in. God leads individuals out of those old dead systems, through a revelation of truth that He imparts to them, but before long they begin to notice how the devil is harassing them. The first thing they think of is to lock the doors and windows, so to speak, in an effort to keep the devil out, but the moment they do, God is locked out also. How is that, Bro. Jackson? It is very simple. The devil is a spirit, and he gives people ideas. He causes some people to read the Bible and get strange revelations from it. Therefore to prevent such a thing from being mixed with the teaching of the Church, they all get together and make a list of the basic Bible truths that they all stand for. This is what they call these articles of faith, even though we realize that not all of them are Bible truths; the devil has already been busy. Nevertheless what they commonly agree upon is all that they are going to allow in their services, therefore God is shut out along with the devil, for He (GOD) also, is a Spirit, and that is how He deals with human hearts, by causing them to see things in His word, that their denominational system does not see. The truth is, you will never keep the devil out like that; he gets in just the same, but God will not force His way into those old cold places; He just lets them go on and die, but He is ever looking for a hungry soul that has His heart’s door standing open for Him to enter. Now all of this should lead us to one conclusion; we can never keep the devil out of the church building, as long as people are free to come and go by their own will and choice. But every true child of God absolutely can keep the devil out of their personal life. How many of you know what I am talking about? There are always some who will not walk where I walk, but I am not the final judge of the matter. I will say this though, Brothers and sisters of this end time restored truth: If we will walk with God day by day in a true Biblical holiness, it will get harder and harder for the devil to sit among us. As perfection becomes more and more a Biblical reality for us to attain, the devil has less and less room to move around in.

WHAT ABOUT MUSIC?

Let me say another thing or two, and then I will try to bring this message to a close. I want to touch on music in the church for the next little while. I had Bro. Neil Connolly play that song on his slide trombone for a reason. Five or six years ago, when Bro. Connolly was here, he was asked to play that song for us. It is a beautiful song to me. “Down from His glory, every living story, my God and Savior came, and Jesus was His name. Born in a manger, to His own a stranger, a Man of sorrows, tears and agony.” I did not know that the tune itself originated in Europe, years ago. But there was a man in the congregation at that time that had come over from Norway. I had picked him up at the airport myself. While Bro. Connolly was playing that song, I saw the brother get up and start toward the platform. I met him, and checked him. He was wanting to say something. But I said, not now, and lead him back to his seat. When the song was finished, and one of the preachers started to preach, (This was in our convention) the man came down to the platform and turned around, like he wanted to say something to the congregation. I went over, and said to him, Brother: Is there something wrong? Yes. He wanted to say something. By that time the preacher was already preaching, and I again said, not now. Wait until after the service. He went back to his seat for a few minutes, but then got up, and went outside. He would not sit in the service. The deacons told me after the service, that they had taken him back to his motel room when he would not remain in the service. I went to his room to find out what was wrong with him, and this is what I heard, “The song that the brother played on his horn is a worldly song.” I said, “Brother, that is not so. That is a beautiful song.” But he insisted, “It is of the world.” Then I said, “How do you know that?” At that, he began to tell me how the song was written in Europe, so many years ago, and that it was a worldly song. It was a classical number, and it was worldly, and Christians ought not to be playing it. I knew that whatever classical music America had, came from Europe, but I said, Brother, the only time I have ever heard that tune it was to the beautiful words known to us as, Down From His Glory. But he did not want to accept it any differently, and I thought to myself, this is where people can really get carried away. They think if any tune was ever associated with the world, that brands it as no good for God, and Christians should not play it. I realize that he did not hear the words that we sing to that tune, and this naturally made the worldly association, when he heard it played by Bro. Connolly, but that did not give him any right to be unreasonable, when I tried to explain the situation to him. I wonder how many of you sitting here, realize just how many of the gospel songs we like to sing, at one time or another, the tune to them has been used by the devil’s crowd? Does that make it a bad song? How many of you ever heard that little song, “Oh, I’m Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes?” It is a worldly song, about a sailor that was far over the seas, and he is thinking about his love back home. It was not a vulgar song, like most worldly songs of our day, but it is a worldly song. Now, Let me ask you this, How many of you know that the tune to that song is the same tune that Roy Acuff sang, “The Great Speckled Bird,” to? The great speckled bird is the Bible in this song. Should we throw that song out, now that we all know this? If you feel that way, I could probably help you throw away a lot of your gospel albums that you love so much, for I can think of a lot of gospel songs that are sung to what, at one time, was a worldly tune. Suppose we leave America with this thought, and go to the other side of the world. A few years back, there was a little country western tune came out, “Anybody Going to San Antonio, Anybody Going My Way.” I know some of you have heard that little song. Truck drivers enjoyed hearing it on the radio, as they drove along. It was not a vulgar song either, but it was a worldly song, not for the church. But when we went to Norway, we heard some young people singing a little song in church, and it was to that same tune, “When I Remember What He Has Done For Me, I’ll Never Turn Back Anymore.” We sat there listening to that little song, and I kept wondering, now where have I heard that tune? Then I remembered it was the tune to “Anybody Going to San Antonio,” and then I wondered where the tune first originated? Which song had it first? It does not make any difference as far as I am concerned, for it is the message contained in the words that determines whether it is a worldly song or a gospel song. Those young people had learned that little song in Germany. They did not know that the tune was used with any other words, just like I did not know that the tune to “Down From His Glory” was one that my brothers and sisters in Norway would consider a worldly tune. Saints, we really need to keep an open mind about all these various things that are attached to holiness. The first thing you need to be conscious of, is that the Church of the living God is universal, and that we Americans have no right to make a sin list for saints that live in a completely different environment than ours. God knows how to deal with every soul that is truly born of His Spirit, regardless of where they may live, and those that are not born again, can never be made holy in the sight of God, just by following your rules for holy living. Just let me say it like this, You follow your own rules, so that you yourself may have the answer of a good conscience before God, but leave room for the Spirit of God to deal with you, just in case you do not have all of your convictions built upon a solid foundation.

WHAT ABOUT DOCTORS
AND MEDICINE?

For another example of extremes that some people are guilty of, let us consider divine healing. I have crossed paths with many people in the last 25 years who did not hesitate to express their viewpoint on divine healing. Many of them would say, so piously, if you believe in divine healing; then it is wrong for you to take pills, and go to doctors. Brothers and sisters, listen carefully to my question. Where did they get such an idea as that? In all of His 3 ½ years of preaching, Jesus never preached one sermon against doctors, nor against taking medicine. Neither did Paul, nor any of the other apostles. On the other hand, we do find where a certain woman had been ill with a blood disease for twelve years, and that she had spent all she had on physicians, and constantly grew worse, instead of better. In other words, she had a medically incurable physical condition. But when she heard about the miraculous power that worked through this man called Jesus, the Christ, she said in her heart, Oh, if I can only touch the hem of His garment, I will be made whole. No one instructed her like that; it was a feeling from within her own heart. Therefore she pushed her way through the crowd until she got close enough to touch His garment, and at that very moment Jesus turned, and said, “Who touched my clothes?” She had hoped that she could do that without being noticed, but Jesus felt virtue go out of Himself, and that caused Him to ask the question. His disciples said, Lord, you can see all this multitude thronging about you on every side, and yet you say, “Who touched me?” About that time, Jesus looked over, and saw the little woman fearful and trembling, and said to her, “Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.” The little woman was healed immediately, from a disease that physicians could not help her with, but did Jesus or any of the others; take that opportunity to condemn all physicians? You know they did not, as well as I know it. Let me tell you what probably did happen though. When Jesus went back to the Capernaum area, after the news of that had had time to spread, they probably had all the sick folks lined up waiting. It is such a common thing for people to feel that whatever works for one will work for everyone, I can just see them, Lord, just walk along here where we can all touch your garment. We are not asking you to pray a long prayer for us, just let us touch you. Does that sound familiar? Is that not the way many preachers of our day, promote such things? I am not making fun of them; many people have been healed in much the same way as that little woman in the scriptures, but I must point out one thing, That little woman was probably not the only sick person that touched Jesus that day, in all of that great multitude, so what was it that made the difference? It was her faith. “Thy faith hath made thee whole.” (Luke 8:48-Mark 5:34) Every believer should know, that when that kind of faith reaches out to God, favorable results come back in return, but none of these scriptural accounts of healing, provide any reason for us to condemn a brother or a sister for going to see a doctor. People have such a tendency to take certain scriptures and use them for a club or a whip, just to beat someone else down, and make them feel bad. They all quote scriptures such as 1st Peter 2:24, which reads like this, “Who His own self (speaking of Jesus) bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed,” and they will say, If you are already healed, why do you go to the doctor? Brothers and sisters, it is alright to remind each other of the many benefits and provisions that are in the Bible, but it is wrong to do it in such a way that it becomes a whip, and brings feelings of guilt upon some who may need to go to a physician. I have always said this, if you can live above sickness, without going to the doctor or taking medicine, that is wonderful; may God bless your soul. But please! Do not condemn a brother or sister that has not attained such a place. Always allow room for the grace of God to work in every person’s life. Do not be so foolish as to think that God is helpless to deal with His true children when they need to move up a notch or two. What do we read in Romans 8:29? “For whom He (God) did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His son, (Jesus) that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” If God has predetermined to do a thing, Brother! You can be sure that He has a way to get it done. Bro. Jackson, does that mean that we should not try to help each other? Of course not. Did I say anything against the children of God, helping each other? Everything I have said has been to help you keep from condemning each other, and to keep you from condemning yourselves, when carnal minded people find fault with you. I have not said one thing that should keep anyone from obeying any scripture that God may reveal to them. Some of you, who have grown more in the stature of the Lord Jesus Christ, may recognize many things in the lives of others that you feel should not be there, but it would be wrong for you to assume a pious attitude toward them, knowing that growing in the grace of God is a progressive process. No one reaches maturity suddenly.

DO NOT BE LIKE CAIN

Let us read a few more words that Paul wrote to the church at Rome, and then we will try to bring this little message to a close. Our hope and our confidence must rest in the ability, and the faithfulness of the one that called us to this great salvation by the wooing of His Spirit. Picking up verse 30, there in Romans 8, we read these words. “Moreover whom He did predestinate, them He also called: and whom He called, them He also justified: and whom He justified, them He also glorified. What shall we say then to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? WHO SHALL LAY ANYTHING TO THE CHARGE OF GOD’S ELECT? IT IS GOD THAT JUSTIFIETH.” God is able to carry us through, if we will just hold steady and depend upon Him. Let us not be as concerned about what other people may think of us, as we are about what God thinks about us. Let me read you a few verses from the little epistle of 1st John, beginning with 3:11. “For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. Not as Cain, WHO WAS OF THAT WICKED ONE, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because HIS OWN WORKS WERE EVIL, and his brother’s righteous. Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. HE THAT LOVETH NOT HIS BROTHER ABIDETH IN DEATH. WHOSOEVER HATETH HIS BROTHER IS A MURDERER: AND YE KNOW THAT NO MURDERER HATH ETERNAL LIFE ABIDING IN HIM.” There are some people who become so violent when they cannot get others to subscribe to their formula of holiness; they are almost like Cain, who physically slew his brother Abel. They may never kill you physically, but they will do everything within their power to kill any spiritual influence you may have with people. Why? Because their own deeds are evil. Their own heart is not right with God. Who would follow such leaders? Those who have drifted along through life without ever becoming grounded upon the word of God. Those who love excitement, more than they love truth. Those who hope for some material advantage, and those whom the devil has set in your assembly just for such an occasion. All of this is foretold in the scriptures, that those who love truth, and desire a holy walk with God, may be forewarned. I am going to close now. I never had any intention of making a sin list for anyone. If you have a Bible, you already have a sin list. If you do not have a Bible, try to get one. Then just humble yourself before God, and ask him to show you from His word, how to conduct yourself as a child of God. If anything in this message leaves a question in your mind, do not hesitate to write us. We are here to help you, if we can. I have always felt that there is a Bible answer for every honest question that anyone may have, concerning their spiritual walk with God. Meanwhile, May His grace be precious to each and every one of you. Amen.