Their Word

INTRODUCTION

 

Christ’s mission on earth had been to present the Father’s word to chosen apostles who were elected to carry on in His stead in the grace age and a prayer of blessing is given in their behalf in John 17. Christ permitted the chosen apostles to take His revelation and present it to the hungry multitudes who would believe on Him through “THEIR WORD”. Satan slowly through the years, worked his way into the church fellowship changing “THEIR WORD” over to his (the devil’s word), and through the antichrist led the church into the dark ages. Through the more than 400 year Reformation Period, God, by degrees restored “THEIR WORD” back among the believers. However, it was not until the end of the age when God sent the spirit of Elijah into the earth that all the restored teachings of the Reformation, which was the framework of the revelation of apostolic faith, should be taken out of denominational settings and all restored truth of ‘THEIR WORD” placed correctly and scripturally into one message and given unto a people at the end of the age. Thus, we examine the event of “THEIR WORD” which opened the age as well as closing it out.

 

Contents

PART 1 – GOD’S OBJECTIVE ACCOMPLISHED

PRAYING FOR APOSTLES

 

Turn with me to St. John 17, where is recorded the final prayer Jesus would ever utter concerning His disciples, as well as including the things of which He had accomplished throughout his 3½ years of earthly ministry. The prayer in John 17 further incorporates the things (doctrines) which He taught, the works which had already been accomplished, as well as the name of the Father which had been revealed and manifested unto the disciples. All this is seen right here in this intercessory prayer where He prayed for the future success of His disciples.

 

While in prayer, Christ made one very particular bold outstanding statement which we desire to look deeper into. Before we do, we note verse 21 shows Christ in prayer for His disciples whom He must leave behind to carry on in His footsteps, praying they might be ONE (in spirit, doctrine, objective, purpose, etc.) even as He and the Father are one! Yet in verse 20, and this is the verse we desire to discuss, Christ is heard saying – neither pray I for these alone (meaning His present day disciples) but for them also (future tense) which shall believe on me (that is on Christ and no other) through “THEIR WORD.”

 

“THEIR WORD” – WHAT WAS IT?

 

Notice please, Christ never said believe on me through MY WORD, instead He said believe on me through “THEIR WORD”. Such a statement must be examined to mean one of two things – either “THEIR WORD” is going to be God’s word, or “THEIR WORD” is going to be their own personal preconceived ideas.

 

CHRIST’S STATEMENTS CONCERNING HIS WORD

 

In order to receive a more accurate picture of what Christ is literally declaring by using such a profound expression as this, let us briefly mention various quotes or various little statements dropped off here and there by the Saviour throughout His personal earthly ministry. Since we won’t be using His entire quote or statement found in different verses, please do not think we will be taking these quotes out of their contexts, because in each case the entire verse where the quote or statement appears is absolutely built around the very fact of what Christ is making reference unto, and that is THE WORD which He speaks!

 

In John 12:48, Jesus says, “The WORD that I have spoken, the same (Word) shall judge him in the last day.” In John 14:24 we hear him say, “the WORD ye hear is not mine.” Well, if the WORD they were hearing was not His, then whose was it? Let us continue to read in John 14:24 which finishes that statement… “The WORD you hear is the Father’s which sent me.” And again in John 17:8 we see a similar statement concerning the Father, the great Eternal Spirit who fills all space. Christ, in prayer, says, “I have given unto them (disciples) the WORDS which thou gavest me.” Therefore, whose words has Christ been speaking all along the way? It is none other than GOD’S WORD!

 

Again Christ says, the WORDS that I speak unto you they are Spirit and they are life, (John 6:63). Therefore, when you wrap all this up it verifies one fact, Jesus the Christ is absolutely none other than an anointed vessel of clay through which the inspiration of Jehovah God, the great Eternal Spirit, might speak His WORD! Thus, we must understand Christ’s WORD, spoken to the disciples, is certainly not ideas which originated from His natural human side of clay causing Him to verbally or vocally speak what He did! No, because Christ further declares (John 5:19-20) I speak nothing in myself but only what the Father (great Eternal Spirit filling all space) shows me.

 

STATEMENTS OF FLESH NOT ETERNAL LIFE

 

Speaking nothing in myself but what the Father shows me, certainly has no intentions of implying Christ could not walk down the road and be able to carry on a normal earthly conversation with the disciples concerning something in a material way which they spotted while walking along the road without the disciples going overboard feeling every word Christ ever uttered had to be looked upon as though it was God’s word or word of eternal life! NO, there were certain things spoken by this man Christ which was conversation produced from none other than His natural fleshly side of life. For instance, I believe often Christ may have freely discussed a horse, house or beautiful flowers or something material with His disciples. Why shouldn’t Christ, who was totally man as well as totally God, be permitted to carry on such a natural earthly conversation without someone going overboard, feeling simply because He spoke it that every word which flowed from His lips could not be anything other than words of eternal life! Yet such conversation, though not words of eternal life, does show an expression of His human nature.

 

No doubt often while in the home of Mary and Martha, Jesus would make complimentary statements in reference to the fine meal the two sisters had prepared for Him. Again I ask you, would such a conversation concerning good food being served have to imply these WORDS were words of eternal life simply because He spoke them! Certainly not. Yet beloved, when it came to those very vital things, or shall we say, vital statements of which He taught those disciples statements which were of absolute necessity that those chosen disciples should remember, then it was such verbal statements as these which were absolutely God’s WORD – these were WORDS of eternal life!

 

APOSTLES RECEIVED WORD

 

Now I trust you are able to understand the difference between statements made by His flesh and statements which were definitely of the Spirit, statements which were the eternal WORDS of God spoken for the sole purpose of eternal life, because beloved, not every statement Christ ever uttered in His life time is to be considered or looked upon as the WORDS OF ETERNAL LIFE. Note that statement we previously mentioned, recorded in John 17:8, when Christ has climaxed His earthly ministry we hear Him saying – I have given them the WORDS WHICH THOU GAVEST ME! Note carefully what else Jesus said – and they (disciples) have received them! Given unto them THY WORDS incorporates 3½ years of teaching. Such a statement incorporates many statements, many parables, many illustrations or phrases, and once you have placed all that together, it all forms a very beautiful picture concerning the plan of God which was instilled into the human minds of those who heard Him.

 

ETERNAL LIFE IS

 

Knowing His earthly ministry is already completed. Christ the man, the anointed one prays this prayer recorded in John 17 where verse 3 openly declared what eternal life is! Christ says eternal life is to know the eternal Father (who is Spirit filling all space) as the only true God and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent. Here we see no one knows the Father save the Son and unless the Son will reveal who the Father is, NOBODY will ever know! It takes a revelation to know the Father! (I John 2:13) If Eternal Life is to know the Father and the Son, how does this come about. Study prayerfully Matthew 11:27.

 

We must realize the prayer is in behalf of all He has taught and accomplished through His earthly ministry and everything He has implanted in the life of these disciples as we hear Him say in verse 8 – Father, I have given unto them THY WORDS and they have received them. Note, the disciples have already (by faith or revelation) received the Father’s WORDS! In verse 4 of that prayer Christ declares, I have finished the work thou hast given for me to do. Note carefully verse 6 where he declares, I have manifested or revealed thy name unto these men thou hast given me out of this world.

 

THREE OUTSTANDING ACCOMPLISHMENTS

 

Thus we see three outstanding things which were precisely important which the fleshly man, Christ, the Anointed One, the Son of God accomplished while here in His earthly ministry. Let us review them. (1) According to verse 4, He finished the assigned work, (2) According to verse 6, He manifested or revealed the name of the Father to His disciples, (3) According to verse 8, He says He has given the disciples ‘THY WORD”. And note, the man Christ, who was born of the virgin (Mary) says. . . and they have accepted all these things!

 

PART 2 – IMPORTANCE OF THEIR WORD

LEAVING MINISTRY TO MEN

 

Closing His earthly ministry with prayer we note something most important. We see from this final, great intercessory prayer, especially in behalf of those 11 disciples, (Judas Iscariot weeded out) that the man Christ, who is soon to be removed from the scene through His death at Calvary, is fully aware this great ministry He has begun must be continued on and furthermore He is aware the responsibility to carry on this ministry must rest upon the shoulders of other men, not merely ONE MAN, but MANY men, 11 men who have already received all the teachings Christ had spoken up to this hour! Therefore, we note the man Christ is in intercessory prayer for those original eleven chosen disciples (seeing Judas had already gone to betray Him). John 13:30-31. He concentrates on the eleven ordained ones to carry on in His stead. But wait, we note in verse 20 the chosen disciples are not the only ones Christ includes in His prayer for He now says, neither pray I for these alone (eleven chosen apostles), but for them also (future tense) who shall believe on me through “THEIR WORD”! Notice, the people will not believe on the disciples, but will be believing on Christ through the WORD SPOKEN BY the apostles.

 

WERE APOSTLES REPETITIONISTS

 

Now I ask you, will these men, in order to be accepted (by others) have to become repetitious copycats of every word Jesus spoke, or will they be free to minister as they see fit, using their own verbal expressions to present Christ to the world – let us find out if these men were repetitionists. We live in an hour when many people, because they are so carnal minded and do not understand what the prophet to the age meant when he said certain things such as, “Say it like I do, etc.”, feel that you and I are supposed to be mere repetitionists of verbal words of the prophet here at the endtime. How carnal can people be! I want you to know these apostles certainly were not, yet they too had to say it (the revelation of truth) exactly as Christ did, but they were allowed to express the revelation in their own words. I am going to show you these original men for whom Jesus prayed that people in the future would believe on Him through “THEIR WORD” were never mere verbal copycats, and furthermore, Christ never intended that one of His disciples in any age ever be a verbal copycat! Instead those original apostles were anointed vessels of God who had the revelation in their bosom of what Christ said, and furthermore, it behooves us today as believers to also have within us that same kind of revelatory picture or revelation of the spirit that burned within them, because if we do have the same kind of true picture or revelation of this true message of Christ in our souls, you may rest assured God gives you the liberty to express that truth in whatever way your human ability is capable of expressing it!

 

LIBERTY TO EXPRESS

 

One thing I know, if you have also received the same spiritual thought I have received in my spiritual mind, you are at liberty with God’s blessings to express that truth in whatever capacity or way the Holy Ghost would lead you to express it unto others! I, too, am at liberty to express it the same way I desire, yet remember in the final analysis (the end) I want you to know the revelatory thought of that truth of the gospel is going to come out exactly the same way irregardless who speaks it under the anointing of the Holy Ghost. The vehicle of words used to get the revelational thought across will of course not be the same, yet the revelating thought expressed WILL BE THE SAME!

 

FEW VERBAL QUOTES

 

I’ll have you to know, after the birth of the church, there are very few places in the scripture you will ever find where Peter, James, John, Paul or any others of the fivefold ministry (especially the apostles) ever quoted or expressed the words of Jesus verbally, word for word, like certain people expect others to do today! Yet all this time who were these apostles preaching – JESUS CHRIST, OF COURSE! Christ prayed that others might believe on Him through their words as they expressed the truth to others in their own personal vocabulary.

 

GOD IS A REVELATORY SPIRIT

 

Paul, who never saw or heard Christ speak in the flesh knew Him only by the Spirit, certified to the Galatian Church, brethren (Galatians 1:11-12) the gospel I preach unto you, I learned it not of man, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. And remember that revelation was not delivered to Paul by any man (namely any apostle). How could Paul boast such a thing as this? God had to do it in this fashion in order to prove to Paul he was a revelatory Spirit.

 

Peter, on the other hand, was a man who did have the privilege of walking with Christ and hear verbally every thing He taught. Peter saw all things Christ did, though contrary to what many may think, Peter did know exactly how to baptize those 3000 converts on the day of Pentecost. He understood perfectly the revelation or Great Commission recorded in Matthew 28:19, Luke 24:45-48, Mark 16:14-18, John 20:19-23, when he told those 3000 to be baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and they would receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. No, Peter wasn’t confused, he knew exactly what to tell those 3000 who had been pricked in their heart, because note, he had the verbal words of Christ in his spiritual mind to inspire and guide him in what to say! I want everyone to realize Peter was at liberty to use his own human vocabulary and human ability to express to the 3000 what Christ had said during His earthly ministry. Because note, in John 17:8, Christ openly declared He had given the apostles God’s WORD and the apostles had accepted it! However, the above statement did not include the Apostle Paul, seeing at that time he was not of the number, therefore, with Paul the revelation came quite differently. Nevertheless, it was still the Spirit of Christ after having knocked Paul down on the Damascus Road some 160 miles from Jerusalem, which sent Paul into the Arabian Desert (Galatians 1:17) and when the Spirit of Christ, the Holy Ghost, finished with him down there, Paul came out of that desert with the correct revelatory picture drawn in his bosom exactly like the other disciples who walked with Christ, had drawn in their bosom. Please note, Paul, who declared he received his revelated gospel from no man but through the revelation of the spirit of Christ, was also baptizing converts just like the Apostle Peter was! Furthermore, I remind you, Paul who was taught by no man, taught also the baptism of the Holy Ghost exactly like Peter did!

 

NOT AUTHOR OF REPETITION

 

From what we learn or what we can see in these two separate ministries, let us know God who is Spirit certainly is not the author of repetition! Therefore, I want you to know God intends to draw the correct picture of His divine plan of salvation in every mortal human soul, and if we all get the picture correctly in our minds then under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost who planted the picture in us, God gives us liberty to express what we see in our own verbal expression of words! And as we stated, the revelatory thought of that truth will have to come out the same, although the working which carried the thought naturally is not the same.

 

DID PRAYER INCLUDE YOU?

 

When Christ, in prayer, made this profound statement, “neither am I praying for these (eleven apostles) alone, but for them also who will later believe on me through “THEIR WORD,” that included me and that included you, provided you, by revelation, have allowed the words of the apostles to be planted in your life! Throughout the first church age, especially during that first generation after Pentecost, things were known to have gone very smoothly. Allowed to speak in their own words, those men for whom Christ prayed were busy carrying the true message, not on paper, but by a living revelation in their bosom. They were men definitely filled with the Holy Ghost, filled with that same Spirit which Christ was and in which He also ministered and spoke. Therefore, it was this one Spirit God who is the very inspirational factor of it all. Thus if God, who is Spirit, is allowed to freely enter into minds of men and inspire those minds by His spirit, when something does come out of men’s lips it is going to be something which is consistent and you can rely on the fact when that man says one thing today, six months later that revelatory statement is still going to remain the same because GOD IS CONSISTENT!

 

PETER NOT REPETITIONIST

 

Watch Peter for a few moments and see if he is a man who is a mere repetitionist of the verbal words Jesus spoke. The church was born on the day of Pentecost and we are fully aware from scripture (John 17:20) the born again believers are going to fall in the hands of somebody who is required by Almighty God to be responsible for what they do as well as how they, the church, have heard it. Thus the day of Pentecost began when 120 Jews being filled with the Holy Ghost came staggering under the Power of God into the streets of Jerusalem, streets filled with devout Jews of every nation around the Mediterranean Sea. Sure, it was God manifesting His power through these 120 disciples in such fashion, yet when the question was asked, men and brethren, what must we (3000) do? How utterly foolish it would have been for a man in that hour to have stood there, looking dumbfounded at this crowd of hungry seekers, not aware of knowing what to do or say! Because I remind you, not one of these men had in their possession a single book they could quote from! Think of it, Peter did not even have an Old Testament scroll in his hand. The words he was speaking were pouring out of his soul under the anointing of the Spirit. Though Peter nor any of the early disciples had a book to turn to find out what those 3000 were to do, they were far better off than many who claim to be followers of this last day message! No, I am not against books, they definitely have their place, yet for the cause of Almighty God, isn’t it about time we got a revelation inside our bosom to guide us also! Remember, the man who wrote the Bible, especially the New Testament, before anything could be written in letter form it had to first be written in the hearts of those disciples! Had it not first been inspired in their minds it would never have been brought into the printed form in the first place.

 

EXPRESSING REVELATORY PICTURE

 

Something has been asked this big fisherman standing in the streets of Jerusalem, “Men and brethren, what must we do?” Does Peter know what to say? Does he know what to do? What about those other ten original, faithful, true disciples standing there, do they know what to do or say? (When we say eleven we are not referring to Matthias who was voted in.) Recall, Peter has earlier been chosen, (Matthew 16:15-20) to be the spokesman who was given the keys to unlock the kingdom or unlock the dispensation of grace referred to as the kingdom of heaven. The great multitude of the 3000 had heard and seen the power of God demonstrated in their behalf. A miracle of languages had been performed and it was there 3000 who had benefitted from it. God had spoken to each of these in their own home languages, not in the Hebrew tongue which all Jews know, but in the languages of the countries wherein they were born. God, speaking to each of them in their own home language wherein they were born, had created a question in their minds, therefore they questioned those chosen disciples, men and brethren, what must we do? The responsibility of telling this crowd what they must do is now going to rest upon one of those very men for whom Christ had earlier prayed in John 17 when He said, I pray not only for these, but for all those who will believe on me (at Pentecost and elsewhere) through “THEIR WORD.” Now we are about to see the importance of how they are permitted to minister in ‘THEIR WORD” because 3000 will soon be added to the church through “THEIR WORD”.

 

VERBAL QUOTING WITHOUT REVELATION

 

Remember we are trying to determine from scripture whether or not these men were mere repetitionists and verbal quoters of what Jesus said or do they use their own words to express what Jesus spoke as the scripture said they would. I am not saying these things to be different, but ONLY TO BE LOGICAL. If all we are trying to do here at the end of the grace age is become a bunch of legalist, (mere statement quoters without revelation of what it is all about) then all I can say is, the ones with the sharpest minds are going to make it! Personally, I do not have that sharp a mind. This thing has to form a picture inside of me because I simply do not have the ability to remember all those quotes, word for word as some people expect you to do in this hour.

 

Let’s dramatize this Jerusalem scene as it might have appeared were it today. A question has just been raised and now Peter and the other brethren must tell the 3000 what to do. Here stands Peter looking at the other disciples, afraid to speak fearing he might not place his words just right; fearing his words may not be exactly as Jesus’ verbal words were, saying to the brethren, now what was it He told us to say? And they answer him back, Peter now be sure you speak what you are about to say exactly as He said it or we just can’t accept you as being in the message. Are you gouging someone Bro. Jackson? No, not unless you are that somebody who wants to live in such a manner as that, in relation of truth! I find it very strange, a big percentage of people in this message today, while they were in denominationalism you could poke any old thing down their throat and they would be as loyal to that thing as they could be. You could poke chicken suppers, rummage sales, teach them the moon was made of green cheese; you could poke all that foolishness down their throats, they cared little, they were most loyal to it. Yet when God, here in this endtime, came to get us out of all this scattered mess and present us with a truth that would get us somewhere, mainly back in fellowship with Him, most of the people wind up being a bunch of legalist rather than a group of realists!

 

ANSWER WAS REVELATION

 

No, you better believe Peter did not look at the other eleven and wonder what he was supposed to say or whether he had to quote verbally from the words of Jesus off page such and such to make the other disciples accept him as being in the message. NO, Peter did not even quote the great commission word for word as was declared by Jesus the night following His resurrection. But Praise God, Peter knew the sum of what that commission was, for he knew there was only one man to preach and that man’s name was Jesus Christ, because as Peter later said, (Acts 4:12) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

 

REVELATION OF COMMISSION

 

Peter knew by revelation Jesus Christ was none other than the Mighty God manifested or robed in flesh, II Corinthians 5:19, reconciling the world unto Himself. He, along with all the other disciples, had received the revelation of the Father’s name, as John 17:6-12 says, he had accepted it! And knowing this gospel of repentance and remission of sins should be preached in the name of Jesus Christ unto all the world, beginning at Jerusalem, Luke 24:45-48, may I ask you, where is Peter standing when this question, What must we do, is asked him and the other disciples? Peter is standing in the very streets of the city of Jerusalem where it was prophesied this gospel would begin to be proclaimed. Peter had all these statements which had been made by Christ over the last 3½ years in the back of his spiritual mind. Remembering all these saying and statements of Christ which he had heard, all this placed or compiled together had formed in Peter’s bosom a beautiful picture, and although his answer to those 3000 isn’t verbally word for word what Christ had spoken, when that question was put to him, Peter, without hesitation under the Holy Ghost anointing answered, repent everyone of you and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins.

 

GOSPEL STORY CENTERED AROUND CHRIST

 

I want you to know the whole sum of the matter is this, the gospel story is built around none other person than Jesus the Christ who not only declared I am the Way, but also said I am the Truth and Life as well. Beloved, no other living creature could have ever made such a statement as that, I AM THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND LIFE. Peter, Paul, James nor any of the other apostles could ever declare anything like that. They could never say I am that! No, not even the prophet, William Branham, could say I am the way, the truth and the life, although there are many, I am sorry to say, who absolutely try to make him say he is the I AM! That little man I saw and heard only declared Jesus was the I AM. Who else but Jesus could possibly say I am the way, the truth and life. No wonder salvation is totally around this one individual (around his death, burial and resurrection). No one else ever said I am the way. Paul the apostle was once heard to say, in the way which men call heresy serve I the Lord.

 

No, you never heard any Old Testament prophet or New Testament apostle every say I am the light. Who is the light? Jesus is! I John 1:7 says, if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another. Note, it is only then, the apostle continues by saying, the blood of Jesus Christ will cleanse us from all (inbred) sin. Moreover, in order to cleansed from all (inbred) sin, somebody must somewhere begin to walk in the light of that somebody who is supposed to be the light of the world. All Old Testament prophets, prior to the I AM, pointed to Him. Moses, Isaiah, Daniel, who were all Old Testament prophets, spoke of Him as they pointed Israel toward Him, while the Apostle Peter and Apostle Paul (who called Jesus the and high priest of our profession) pointed all back to Him. The prophet messenger to the Laodicean Church Age also pointed men back to Him. Why? Because Christ is the Light!

 

REVELATION BURNS IN PETER’S BOSOM

 

Peter, on the day of Pentecost, said, repent everyone of you and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. No, he certainly did not have to look around and shudder wondering whether or not he had worded it correctly and spoken it verbally word for word, as Christ stated it. The revelation of every statement Christ ever spoke was revelated and burning afresh in Peter’s bosom. Peter did not have to feel uneasy about his answer, wondering are they going to criticize me over it or disfellowship me because of the way I worded it. Had the others accepted Peter’s revelation of what Jesus verbally said in their presence? One thing is sure, he had quoted nothing verbally. In the background could be heard the other eleven disciples declaring, that’s right Peter, pour it on! Here much is going to depend on “THEIR WORD”, as to how these 3000 and others will be affected in days to come. We must bear in mind what they heard and accepted from the mouth of the apostles, though it wasn’t word for word what Christ had spoken, caused 3000 souls to be placed in the body of Christ that day! 3000 souls standing in the streets like so many today not knowing what to do, begging for an answer, what must I do! Peter quickly responded, repent everyone of you and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost for the promise is unto you and to your children and to all those (gentiles) who are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

 

EXACT REVELATION OF COMMISSION

 

No where did Christ every say this in those exact words. Nevertheless, that is the exact revelation of all the statements Christ ever made concerning New Testament salvation! Here for the first time in the history of the church do we see a man giving such advice as this, saying to repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for something, for the remission of sins.

 

In relation to the great commission spoken by Christ in Matthew 28:19, the Trinitarian is often heard to say, I will take what Christ said. You may be shocked to know Peter also took what Christ said, although he did not take the verbal statement word for word as Jesus said it. And here is the beauty of it, Peter took the revelation of what Jesus said because all those various statements spoken by Christ had formed a beautiful revelation of truth and was burning brightly in Peter’s bosom. Peter also knew as Jesus had informed him earlier, that Christ was going to build His church upon nothing other than the rock of revelation. (Matthew 16:18) Therefore Peter, under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, took the revelation of the Holy Spirit, took the revelation of Matthew 28:19 upon which Christ declared He would build His church, while this carnal bunch of religionist today who want to argue has nothing either than a verbal expression to embrace! Sure, no one can deny they do not have a verbal quote, yet the pitiful part is they have no revelation to go with their verbal quote! You don’t find the other eleven standing there fuming and fussing with Peter saying, Peter, we can’t accept it because you did not say it right, you did not quote it verbally the way He spoke it! I would like to say to those people who always want to argue over the verbal expression saying they will take what Jesus said over what Peter said, especially the people who believe in a Pentecostal experience, it is a strange thing to me, you will accept Acts 2:39, but refuse to accept the first part of Acts 2:38. How silly can people be! You refuse to accept what Peter said in verse 38 about water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ, yet you will turn around and accept what Peter said in verse 39 concerning the Holy Ghost! Why do they accept verse 39 and reject his statement in verse 38? It is because they believe in the Holy Ghost but not in water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins!

 

GAGING ON GNAT

 

How ignorant to scripture can people be! That is just like straining at a gnat and swallowing a camel.

 

Recall that statement Jesus made referring to the hypocrites of that hour, saying to them, you strain at a gnat and swallow a camel, referring to how they treat the truth of His word. Did you ever see a toad frog sitting around at dusk, leaping up and grabbing hold of large hard shell bugs? That is sort of the picture Christ is speaking about, straining or gagging on a gnat, but swallowing a big camel. A toad will almost turn wrong side out just to swallow an old hard shell bug, something that is far too large to swallow. He will swallow it down and swell up. Ever hear that phrase, swell up bigger than a toad? Actually that is where this statement stems from. Isn’t that exactly how many of these religious church people are? Give them a little simple Bible truth of the gospel which should be easy to swallow and they will cough and gag and almost turn wrong side out over it. However, let something come along that is just as carnal as can be even if it is as large as the broad side of a barn, those individuals, like the old toad, will open their mouth wide enough to somehow swallow that thing down, when actually that thing should be far more difficult to swallow than a little simple truth would be.

 

WHY DISCIPLES SUPPORTED PETER’S POSITION

 

Therefore, when Peter stated what he did, may I say the support and loyalty from those other men toward Peter’s unheard of statement stemmed over the fact that within these men also lay that same true revelatory picture produced off the statements of what Jesus had taught. Therefore, they knew Peter was correct in his statement, though it was by no means a verbal quote of what Jesus had said. No, these men in the first age were not mere repetitionists of quotes, they were the recorders of revelation! These disciples of the truth had the true revelatory thought flowing through their very being, and as that revelatory thought burned on the oil of the Holy Ghost furnishing light unto their spiritual minds concerning the revelation of Christ, wherever these disciples went and questions were asked them concerning the revelation of Christ in this message, there were words which must absolutely be THEIR own WORDS which would flow from their lips, words which could never be looked upon as a mere verbal repetitious quote of Christ! See, it is the flow of the Holy Ghost through their own human personality which allows them to use their own human personality, which allows them to use their own vocabulary to express in their own words as their ability allows the revelation of this message. Moreover, under the Holy Spirit anointing a clear picture is painted in the minds of others whereby the listener could actually know what kind of revelation lay inside that person presenting them the truth.

 

NOT A FLOW OF VERBAL REPETITION

 

Speaking of the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, Jesus said, out of your belly or innermost being shall flow rivers of living waters. Note, Christ did not say, out of your belly shall flow nothing but a constant continual stream of repetition of statements, out of your belly shall flow rivers of living water! There is quite a difference! Nevertheless, we must always bear in mind, there is definitely a place for a quote, yet I tell you where most of your quotes begin, after the person has entered into an argument! Certain people always become so concerned about a quote and it all winds up on the basis of a technicality in an argument! I have never heard much revelation come forth out of an argument, have you? There are some people you couldn’t convince they were wrong until you were gray headed.

 

SPIRIT MUST DRAW

 

Christ declared no man comes unto me except the Father draw him, John 6:44. Therefore, only provided the Holy Ghost is drawing or working with that person will he ever at some time listen to truth. On the other hand, if the Holy Ghost (the Father) is not drawing or working with that heart you could do your utmost to draw a picture of the thing in his mind, but it will mean absolutely nothing to him. Why? Because that person has no revelatory factor working within him! However, if God is working on that individual’s mind to draw him a picture and clarify his understanding, then you may rest assured after while a picture will begin to break through, a light will begin to lighten up the darkened understanding of the individual’s mind.

 

ALREADY IN BOSOM

 

The church was born on the day of Pentecost because this is the day Christ fulfilled His promise in John 14:17-18, when He declared the Spirit of Christ, which was with them should one day be in them. And may I say that every doctrine which was ever taught to that predestinated, ordained Holy Ghost filled, revelated church through His anointed fivefold ministry, get this, every one of those doctrines were already revelated and simply laying there in the bosom of those Holy Ghost filled disciples! That beloved, is why after Pentecost and the coming of the Holy Ghost into the life of the church they did not have to go around studying books in order to receive doctrines such as predestination, eternal security, sanctification, baptism of the Holy Ghost or water baptism in Jesus Name or any of these other great truths! No, these doctrines were already in them, they already knew it because these teachings were laying present in their bosom. All they required was the watering of the Holy Ghost and the seed would sprout! God watched those truths through His anointed fivefold ministry, men who were allowed to express the truth in their own vocabulary. But sad to say, we live in an hour when many endtime people do not believe you should declare this message in your own vocabulary as you are inspired and led strictly by the Holy Ghost to do! On no, they are so carnal they believe because the prophet (who knew how people would twist the revelation) said, say it like I do, they think he meant the verbal word, therefore, you should spend all your time (even if you are in the fivefold ministry) doing nothing but quoting mere verbal quotes or making identical word for word statements of what the prophet messenger to the age said in his own verbal wording! We believe in a fivefold ministry, they say, provided that ministry will say only verbal words just like the prophet did. THEY DON’T BELIEVE IN A NEW TESTAMENT FIVEFOLD MINISTRY! It has been done in the history of the church. Show me one place in scripture where men ever found such a confinement. The Apostle Peter using his own words or thoughts, many years after the church had begun, expressed in his epistles the doctrine of election before the foundation of the world by the grace of God, saying that we were already fore-ordained, predestinated, chosen and elected in Christ before the beginning of all things. Show me where Christ ever worded it in that fashion, yet that is his revelation. Paul presented the same revelation of Christ through his own words in Romans 8. If you will note as you read and study an epistle, whether it is Peter, Matthew, John, Paul or any of the other apostles, you may be amazed to discover these men did practically no verbal quoting of Christ’s identical words. Therefore, I ask you, why would men be confined by the Holy Spirit in the endtime to use only verbal quotes of the messenger to the age who restored us back to the original revelatory teaching of the apostles, men, I remind you, who were given freedom by the Holy Ghost to teach the message using their own words, John 17:20, to get this same message across where others might believe on Christ! It is only the ignorance and spiritual blindness of man who make that confinement upon others, NOT THE HOLY SPIRIT! Ministers today have the same God given liberty to present the truth in their own vocabulary, provided they have a true picture in their soul as did the ministers in the early church to present the same truth you and I are supposed to be presenting today.

 

“THEIR WORD” CARRIED HIS REVELATION OF THOUGHT

 

With that thought now ever present in our minds that Christ said they would use THEIR (own) WORDS, John 17:20, in order to cause others to believe on Him and he asked the eternal Spirit to bless his request, we must always remember if this prayer request in John 17:20 is going to be answered concerning the blessing on ‘THEIR WORD”, though spoken differently from his own verbal statement, must nevertheless carry the same thought he is, or shall we say must carry, the same revelation of thought he was projecting. In other words, by revelation, His thought would so richly indwell the apostles as they spoke using their own words that “THEIR WORDS” would be carrying His thought! How, you ask, could such a thing be possible? Very simple. It is because the same Holy Ghost who Christ was is also in the apostles and inspires it all. The Holy Ghost is going to anoint those yielded lips of each apostle and cause those men, though they are using their own words, to carry or transfer the correct revelatory thought of Christ to the hearer, causing the hearer to receive a correct picture of grace and plant the revelation of Christ in their own bosom. Because they, too, by the Holy Ghost, hearing the anointed words of the apostles, would also catch the same revelatory thought which had first been expressed in the mind of Christ, thus “THEIR WORD” was used to transfer His thought or revelation over to the heart of others.

 

SPIRIT REVEALS ERROR

 

If an individual has the Holy Ghost in his life and he is preaching truth to others under the inspiration, the individual listening will soon be receiving what that preacher’s thought is, provided they also have the Holy Spirit. Now remember, in order to receive His inspired thought, it is imperative you have the Holy Spirit in your life, otherwise you will never receive the inspired truth coming forth in the inspired message. Remember also if you have the Holy Spirit and someone is trying to teach you false doctrine or false teaching, it won’t be long before you will know that person is off track. Why? Because the Holy Spirit in your life who is your teacher, leading you into all truth, does not intend for you to be led into error (only truth). That is exactly the way it was in the early church. It is the Holy Spirit who shows the individual error from truth (I John 2:26-27, also I John 4:6).

 

Here is another beautiful thing about the anointing of the Holy Spirit in the hearer’s life as well as the speaker’s life. If you are listening to preaching under the anointing of the Holy Spirit, and you are familiar with scripture, many times you can walk right alongside the speaker in his thought and if the inspiration and anointing is truly heavy and you are very much wrapped up in the spirit of the speaker’s thought, oftentimes you can see exactly where he is taking that thought. That is the joy and glory in the Word of God. Because of the Holy Spirit in your life you are able to know what he is speaking about. On the other hand, how boring it is to hear some learned theologian with his monstrous phrases, reading through the Bible, merely quoting verse by verse without any Holy Ghost inspiration whatsoever. Sure, it is the letter of word but remember Paul, the apostle, taught the letter (alone) killeth, it is the spirit that quickens or give life to the word in your soul, fanning it into a burning revelation to furnish light whereby you may see where you are going spiritually.

SPIRIT RECALLS TO MEMORY

 

That is why I remarked earlier I am just like those original disciples, I have a poor memory, I am afraid if I had to depend on my memory I just could not make it. But I am so glad the Holy Spirit will call to our memory all the things we have need to remember, therefore, we do not have to rely on our human memory. Recall Christ in John 14:26, declaring to the bereaved disciples who knew He was going away, informed them when the Comforter, the Holy Ghost whom the Father would send in Jesus’ name, had come he would teach the disciples all things and bring all things to their remembrance whatsoever He had said unto them. Yes, I am so glad God is spirit who can enter our lives, teaching us and bringing back to our memory all things we have need of.

 

Even if you can’t write your name, much less read a book, provided you are born again and have the spirit of God in your life, you would be able to hear a man of God preaching under the inspiration, and provided that message is simple and down to earth and the minister is using plain, simple Holy Ghost language, you too could understand the message. May I say, this thing is so easy and so simple provided you have a revelated mind that the Bible itself declares, a fool need not err therein!

 

HOLY GHOST INSPIRED EVERYTHING

 

Thus studying throughout the book of Acts which presents approximately the first 45 years of the early church from its original beginning, you will note none of those men were mere repetitionists! None of those men were seen carrying books around to quote from, giving reference to a quote on pages so and so. NO, but praise God they did carry around something in their bosom and that something they treasured and guarded! It was the revelation of Christ in their soul! Let anyone come along in that hour of the early church with a contrary revelation and see how quick it was before that person was found out and exposed.

 

HOW GENTILES KNEW CHRIST

 

We come quickly over to the Apostle Paul who wasn’t one of the original disciples, to determine whether or not Paul was a mere repetitionist of statements. Paul, we know, was especially chosen for we recall the prophecy given over him by Ananias n Acts 9:15, 22:14, 26:16-18, how he would be a light unto the gentiles and a means of salvation unto the ends of the earth. Though Paul (the man) himself was never to be preached, it was the revelation of Christ he preached which was embedded into the hearts of men and women that wherever they dwelt they could live the reality of Jesus Christ through their own life. For the Apostle Paul declared, though we (referring to the Jewish nation) have known Christ after the flesh, henceforth (now addressing gentile Christians) know we Him any longer after the flesh. No gentile never had the privilege of knowing Christ after the flesh. Their knowledge of Him came strictly by the Spirit of Christ. Thus, the gentiles knew Christ only by revelation of the spirit, that revelation was delivered mainly through the anointed teaching of the Apostle Paul. Thus we see Paul himself was by no means a repetitionist of mere statements, because you must remember when Paul entered the ministry there was not one New Testament epistle by Peter, Matthew, John nor any of the others which had been written that hour. Paul, you recall, wrote possibly 13 epistles of the New Testament himself, but may I say, because that early church was so yielded to the Holy Spirit and what he taught through this fivefold ministry, as the revelation of Christ blazed in their bosom they were all able to live better, preach straighter with more understanding of the true message, walk straighter and be more yielded to the spirit of God without a single Bible school, without access to any books or even tape recorders than the greater percentage of the people in this last day message ever dreamed of being able to do.

 

HEADING FOR DEVIL’S JUNKYARD

 

No, I am not gouging when I say that I am simply staring the truth squarely in the face. It does not scare me in the least to say this because I see where people are headed, they are headed straight into the devil’s junkyard. Because with the spiritual attitude many hold to in this hour and knowing what kind of statements are already imbedded in the minds, they are not one bit better off than those in Roman Catholicism! As a matter of fact with the spiritual attitude many of them possess shows they are worse off than those in Roman Catholicism, and if God should tarry His coming another few years, that attitude will even worsen! They are simply void of revelation, yet no one can deny they certainly do not have a spirit leading them on deeper into apostasy and further away from the true revelation of the word, because they do. Yet as long as that early church stayed yielded to the spirit of God no heresy could enter in. Improper and erroneous revelations were quickly discerned out and cast aside.

 

PAUL’S REVELATION SURPASS PROPHETS

 

Note, when God called Paul upon the scene, according to his own testimony, he declared he was not taught the revelation of truth by any man, but strictly by the spirit of Christ. God imbedded into Paul’s life every doctrine, every precept, yes, and even revealed every hidden revelation of Old Testament scriptures prophesied by Old Testament prophets who, unbeknowings to them, made references to the grace or church age in their prophecies. Paul declared all these Old Testament scriptural terms pertaining to the grace period were revealed to the apostle office in the New Testament, and get this, things revealed which had never been revealed to any of the prophets of old! (Ephesians 3:2-9)

 

In Ephesians 3, Paul declared God had made all this mystery known unto him by the spirit, how the gentiles, through the grace age, would become fellow hears with the Jews in God’s great program. Paul taught his new revelation to the Ephesian church which, I remind you, consisted of both Jewish and gentile Christians, several years after he experienced the greatest three year revival in his entire ministry when all Asia was so stirred with the truth of Christ and the seven churches mentioned in Revelation 2 and 3 were founded off the revelatory light which sprang from that 3 year revival at Ephesus. The converted gentiles who only a short time before were pagans worshiping at a heathen temple, now sat in beautiful fellowship alongside the Jews, because now they also embrace a precious revelation of Christ in their bosom. They could see by revelation what Paul taught when he made mention how God, through the grace period, had not broken down the middle wall of partition between them, giving reference to the old law of commandments which works in and around the flesh. God has broken that down, Paul says, and taken the twain, both Jews and Gentile, and made for Himself one new man in Christ! Don’t you ever forget, had every one of those early Christians, both Jew and Gentile, of the church not had a personal revelation in his own bosom as well as had the Holy Ghost to open his understanding, those poor gentiles would never have known one thing concerning what Paul was talking about!

 

THE REVELATION AT PENTECOST

 

Isn’t it strange, Peter, who heard every verbal quote made by Jesus concerning the truth, never once used any of those verbal quotes on the day of Pentecost! On the day of Pentecost it was strictly by the revelation of the Holy Ghost which showed Peter how to baptize those first 3000 Jewish converts into the grace age, because Jesus, who was both Lord and Christ, is the revealed redemptive name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost seen in Matthew 28:19, and openly expressed in Acts 2:38. Isn’t it also strange that Paul, who was taught by no man, would baptize exactly the same way Peter did. (Acts 19:1-5) I remind you, Paul declared to the Galatian Church, after his conversion he did not go up to Jerusalem where the apostles were to confer with Peter or any of the other apostles as to what he should preach or how converts should be baptized. Instead, it was down in Arabia (Galatians 1:16-18) God taught Paul by the spirit all this message! And seeing Paul and Peter preaching the same, practicing the same, though they received it under two entirely different environments, provided beyond a shadow of doubt it is the Holy Ghost who is the instruments, as well as the inspirational spirit behind all this.

 

APOSTLES REVELATION SAME

 

Note, during that great hour as revelation was going forth, the early church had no need for Bible Schools. All that was needed was mere yielded vessels who were truly born again by the Holy Ghost. When God finished with Paul in Arabia, he too had the same revelation concerning Christ in his bosom as Peter had, and it had come by the revelation of the spirit unto both men. When Paul came on the scene baptizing, he too baptized every convert in the name of Jesus Christ, the Lord as did Peter and the others. Paul’s converts, as well as Peter’s, had the Holy Ghost. Paul taught sanctification, Peter did also. Peter had walked with the flesh men, Jesus Christ, and heard Him verbally speak the message, Paul was able to walk only after the spirit of the man. Both Peter and Paul spoke of the day of the Lord as a day of fire. This and other things show us these men had one teacher and it was the Holy Ghost doing the teaching. But what was more important, each man was allowed by the spirit to present the gospel story of salvation in his own words and was by no means required to use strictly verbal quotes. Jesus promised after the Holy Ghost had come He would teach the disciples all things, bringing to their remembrance whatsoever He had told them in the past. Also showing them things to come.

 

We too should be just as dependent upon this same spirit to get the job done in this hour as was the early church in that hour, because the spirit is the leadership and inspiration of the church. Furthermore, the spirit is the life of every born again disciples. When everything you have ever clung to dies off, it is He who is the Comforter of our soul. Remember when those apostles, Paul, Peter, James, etc., had all been martyred during the first age, had the early church not had the Holy Ghost to comfort them, no doubt the church would have failed in its mission and stopped with the deaths of the apostles. Though the church loved the apostles dearly, because they had a comforter, they could carry on. When everyone, including the preacher, has died off remember Christ in spirit form, the Comforter, hasn’t died but is with you always, even unto the end of the age. I will be with you even in you, Christ said.

 

PART 3 – EXCHANGING THEIR WORD FOR SATAN’S

 

This one message of thought produced through “THEIR WORD” was greatly disturbing the devil as he watched it grow by leaps and bounds. No, Satan did not enjoy watching this in the least because if Peter said there was one God, Paul also said there was one God. The doctrines they taught carried the same line of thought. There was absolutely no division in any of the apostle’s letters. Things were definitely going too smoothly and Satan did not enjoy this, therefore, watch how the trouble enters the fellowship of the church.

 

ROCK OF REVELATION

 

We know according to Matthew 16:18, Jesus had instructed His apostles that He would build His church upon the rock of revelation, not upon Peter nor even upon the Catholic church as some have thought. No, the rock the church is built upon is strictly the rock of revelation! The devil has always had certain little tools he uses. All Satan ever needs to get a foothold in anything is for someone to desire or crave undue recognition and he has his foothold. Here is where it all started, Satan impressed someone to feel they wanted to be recognized in the church. The apostles never carried such a feeling. Beloved, if God knows you and I and we both have a kindred spirit, somewhere our trails will cross because birds of a feather flock together.

 

SATAN IN THE EARLY HOUR

 

It wasn’t long in the grace age before Satan and his group had come along saying the believers must be circumcised, Acts 15. In that hour circumcision was the problem. Then it wasn’t long until someone else wanted to be recognized and they started the unscriptural teaching the church must keep certain days as well as observe certain Jewish feast days as did Jews under the Old Testament. What does this all add up to? It is merely Satan’s way to add to or trying, shall we say, to perfect the already perfect revelation of God in Christ. It is impossible for Satan to perfect anything, he can only pervert the true revelation, the revelation of Christ is already perfect and needs nothing other than people to merely believe it as the apostles in their own words taught it! Note Paul’s words to the Colossian church where he openly condemns those teachings (Colossians 2:14-17) such as the church having to observe the Old Testament Sabbath, new moons day, meats, drink, etc., as was seen under the old covenant, things which Paul declared had been mere shadows pointing to good things to come in the grace age.

 

KINGDOM IS NOT

 

Paul also taught in Romans 14:17, the kingdom of God was not meat or drink but was peace, joy and righteousness in the Holy Ghost! It was godly living inspired by the Holy Spirit. When the gospel of Christ came to an individual, the primary number one objective was, that individual could not live anything until he was first born again. Once he was born again that new birth would lead him into spiritual growth, not into first seeing how much he could learn! Oh no, but instead how much of himself or his life he could give or yield to God in order his earthly vessel containing the spirit of Christ could be separated from the world and set apart for God’s use.

 

SPIRITUAL MISFITS

 

Paul wrote to the Romans beseeching them not to be conformed to the world but be transformed by the renewing of their minds. (Romans 12:1-2) Beloved, in Christ you have a new mind. If any man is in Christ he is also a new creature, he is a new man! He has put off the old deeds and put on new ones. Old things have passed away, behold all things have become new. (II Corinthians 5:17) Once the life of Christ has begun to be expressed in the believer, only then do they begin to grow in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus. But remember, when our knowledge has exceeded our right living, we will not only become a stumbling block to others, we also become spiritual misfits.

 

WHO IS PRESENTED?

 

I have seen people come into this endtime bride message which was presented to restore us back unto the revelation of “THEIR WORD”, and once they gained a little knowledge you would think they knew exactly how to convert the world. Yet bear in mind, as our main thought and objective in this study is “THEIR WORD”, you must remember, without the thought contained in THEIR WORD you won’t convert anybody to the one true God. I want you to know for many years in that early church “THEIR WORD” remained to be none other than God’s word. Whenever their mouths opened, “THEIR WORD” was spoken and someone saw Jesus Christ. Who does the world see today when we present the message?

 

PERSONALITY CLASH

 

Once a group of Corinthian disciples who had heard the word through various apostles got them selves all divided and confused over a personality clash, one saying, I am Paul, in other words, I hear only what Paul says. Another says, I am of Cephas, meaning Cephas is my preacher, I hear only what he says. Another says he is of Apollos, one of the latecomers, but nevertheless one who had influence in Corinth according to Acts 18, while still others declared they were of Christ. Paul was deeply grieved upon hearing this because he knew that kind of fellowship could never grow into fruitful, Christian living. No, he never unchristianized these Corinthian disciples, yet he did scold them for their inconsistency and lack of growth to grow beyond such carnal things.

 

Who is Paul, Who is Cephas, Who is Apollos, Paul asked this church? They are only men by whom you have heard “THEIR WORD” concerning Christ and having heard through “THEIR WORD” you believed on the Lord Jesus Christ. Now what is wrong with you people! Get your eyes off men and onto Christ where they belong! That is why Paul made the certain reference concerning baptism that he did (I Corinthians 1:14-17) to those gentile Corinthian Christians who were guilty of living in that kind of environment and argument. Is Christ divided? Were you baptized in the name of Paul? (I Corinthians 1:12-14) No, you were baptized in Jesus’ name, not the name of Paul! Paul continues by saying in verses 14-16, besides Crispus and Galus and the household of Stephanas, I thank God I did not baptize any of you else any should say I baptized in mine own name. Why would anyone have accused Paul of baptizing in his own name (Paul) if these people had all been baptized in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost? In Matthew 28:19, there is not one name even mentioned!

 

NOT DESTROYING REVELATION

 

Isn’t it a shame today because Paul spoke what he did (verse 17) we have a carnal bunch of people who enjoy using that scripture to say, see, it is not important whether you get baptized or not! Beloved, that statement is strictly unrelated to Paul revelation concerning the gospel of Christ! Here he is only scolding and trying to correct a carnal situation of a personality clash in the church. No, he is by no means trying to annul his own revelation. Wherever Paul preached his revelation, anyone who ever dared ask him what must I do, always wound up getting wet! That example is clearly seen with the Philippian jailor and his family because these, like others, usually got wet in water baptism in a matter of hours after having received the message into their life. Recall when the Philippian jailor thinking everyone had escaped from his jail and knowing he could never serve the sentence of every man who was under his charge, (as their law stated must be done) looked down the corridor and saw the doors wide open to each cell, started to commit suicide when Paul screamed out, do yourself no harm for we are all here. (Acts 16:25-34) Trembling, he fell before Paul’s feet asking what must I do to be saved? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou and all thy house shall be saved.

 

CONVERTS GOT WET

 

Taking them home, the jailor tended their wounds, and can’t you see his little family having the pure plan of salvation explained to them. With their stomachs now filled with a fine supper, Paul takes the jailor and entire household and baptizes them in Christian baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus. Paul was definitely concerned that all his converts would get baptized once they repented and received the truth into their lives. If that be true, and it is, why would Paul speak in such fashion concerning baptism to this Corinthian church. Paul was not trying to tear down his revelation but he did want to tear to shreds than old carnal idea that simply because one certain apostle or disciple had baptized them there was virtue in the name of that particular man. The virtue lays only in the name of Jesus the Christ and also in the individual’s obedience toward the act of baptism as their faith is placed in God through the revelation of truth.

 

DESIRING RECOGNITION

 

As that first age of apostles began to die off, men desiring to be recognized began to rise up and naturally because the devil did not want the church to remain under the revelation of the one God, seeing the rest of the gentile world already worshiped a plurality of gods, he wanted to make the Christian church do the same. Therefore, these men who desired undue recognition, Satan would raise them up and give them a false revelation. Some man would take the oneness of God, the true revelation of God, and push it a little way off the center of the road, resulting in confusion in the church, pushing that revelation farther and farther off the road of truth until it finally went into the ditch. We note by the year 235 A.D., the Roman Emperor calls all the bishops together and they vote in what they consider a revelation of the trinity.

 

SOMEBODY ELSE’S WORD ENTERS PICTURE

 

Now we begin to see where somebody else’s WORD other than the apostles word which had held the church on true course, now enters strongly into the picture taking the church completely off course and eventually into a thousand years of dark ages. See beloved, what you believe does depend on someone else’s word, doesn’t it? But to stay in fellowship with God also depends upon what we are willing to listen to. After the idea of a trinity or plurality of gods (325 A.D.) It wasn’t long until somebody comes up with the idea of CONFIRMATION. From here on, it is a continual getting away from ‘”THEIR WORD”, which had held the church on true course for centuries! Later they remove the correct water baptism according to the apostles and installs sprinkling in its place. From sprinkling came INFANT BAPTISM. Remember now, none of this is “THEIR WORD”, meaning the apostle’s word about whom Jesus prayed in John 17:20. Nor are these people included in Christ’s prayer because they haven’t believed on Him through “THEIR WORD”.

 

CHANGING STILL MORE

 

Later someone said let’s change some more. We will do away with the Lord’s Supper and make a MASS of it and sell it to the people. For hundreds of years Satan continued to take away from “THEIR WORD”, John 17:20, until we reach the 6th and 7th century, a time for the thousand years dark age period of the church when people would live strictly, not off the apostles word, oh no, but the word of some carnal men. What they had to eat was truly a long way from being the word of God. Now it was strictly the word of the devil!

 

PART 4 – THEIR WORD RESTORED BACK AMONG BELIEVERS

 

Such action continued on until around 1500 when God took hold of a man’s heart named Martin Luther, and quickened him to the revelation of “THEIR WORD” (apostles) that the just did not live by what the pope or church said, but the just are to live by faith (REVELATION). (Romans 1:17) God is now slowly leading the church after 1500 back to “THEIR WORD” (the apostles) because note, the thought of inspiration that Luther received from the spirit God lined up with “THEIR WORD” (Romans 1:17), the apostles word. A few short years later a movement of people moved out on that revelation, the just shall live by faith. They were at least free from that thought which held them bound for so long – faith strictly in the church along with a lot of other nonsense! Over the next 200 years as the church continued moving down through time, men who became reformation leaders, who were used by God to pull the church away from the devil’s word back to “THEIR WORD” (John 17:20), restored such biblical teachings taught by the apostles as ETERNAL SECURITY, PREDESTINATION AND SANCTIFICATION!

 

“THEIR WORD” BECOMES SCATTERED

 

Slowly, step by step, God through a period called the hour of Reformation has been leading and restoring the truth of “THEIR WORD” back midst humanity. True, all of these great truths are seen being restored, however, all of them are not able to benefit the church as a whole because all of these great restored truths of “THEIR WORD” were remaining separate and apart from the other restored truth, seeing they are found or embraced by various groups of people. People were denominating around these individual restored truths as rapidly as they were being restored back to the church.

 

RESTORING GIFTS

 

Finally the dawn of the 20th Century breaks and God in His sovereignty begins to place a deep hunger in people’s heart. As they hungered and thirsted after righteousness, God began to give the church a supernatural experience (of gifts). Suddenly they found themselves here in the 20th Century speaking in languages, languages which had not been heard of perhaps since various periods of the dark ages where ofttimes little tribes of people while in obscurity and under heavy church persecution found themselves speaking in other languages. However, it was never in pre-eminence as it would be now in the 20th Century, for now God would place pre-eminence upon it. Periodically here and there you also began to hear testimonies of outstanding miracles of healing. What did it all mean?

 

FRAMEWORK DOCTRINE

 

With the baptism in the name of Jesus Christ being restored back to the church along with the knowledge that God was one around 1913, and the others which had earlier been restored through reformation leaders over the period of the last 400 years of reformation, God at last had restored the entire framework of His New Testament salvation, or shall we say, restored the framework of “THEIR WORD” back into the earth! Little by little the church is coming farther and farther away from the devil’s word back to “THEIR WORD”. However, all these restored truths which people had individually used to form separate denominations were still separate and scattered among the religious people. No one movement seemed to want to embrace them all, although they were willing to accept perhaps one or two. God had restored a greater measure of the Holy Ghost beginning at the turn of the 20th Century, and recall, the scripture says the Holy Ghost is a teaching spirit to guide you into all truth. Watch what happens.

 

TESTING MAN’S DOCTRINE

 

We can only touch highlights, but time arrives around 1912-13, shortly before World War I, and it is time for God’s church to move on. The Holy Spirit is now ready to test mankind with a new revelation (new to them). For the Pentecostals have been teaching whoever speaks in tongues definitely has the Holy Ghost because with them they thought tongues was the initial evidence of the Holy Ghost! Everyone who had already spoken in tongues felt (according to their doctrine) they had the Holy Ghost, BUT DID THEY? Recall the Holy Ghost, among other things, is also a revelating, teaching spirit. God is now going to test man’s tongue theory as He presented them a deep revelation of truth out of “THEIR WORD”, and when He did many who teach God is one and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ said that new truth was of the devil.

 

This new Pentecostal Holy Ghost teaching was going strong throughout the earth (1912-13) when suddenly God began to speak to men in the Pentecostal ranks from the scripture, some by dreams and some by visions, saying unto those who carried the new revelation of the Holy Ghost and the gifts of the spirit, will you take my name, will you be baptized in my name? All this was the sovereign act of God to restore back to the church a portion of “THEIR WORD”which of course was HIS WORD! Unbeknowings to religion in this hour they were still embracing much of what the devil had emplanted into the church throughout the long dark ages instead of what God through His apostles had planted. Men began to see something in the scripture, as they got a revelation that there was only one true God and there was a true way to be baptized which had not been observed since around 325 A.D. when the church strayed from “THEIR WORD” to embrace the devil’s word. Such a revelation soon divided the trinity tongue speaking Pentecostal circles as great arguments developed among those who could speak in tongues. Since all claimed the Holy Ghost there should not have been an argument only rejoicing as they all entered into more of “THEIR WORD”. God took this new movement based around their new revelation of Acts 2:38, and established them in the truth of revelation of the oneness of God and the proper way of baptism. Remember, whenever God restored new truth it always brought great separation from other followers or church people!

 

PEOPLE DIVIDED INTO “ISMS”

 

What do we see universal Christiandom has become as we move out into the 20th Century? Why every one is still imbedded in every kind of an “ism”; Catholicism, Lutheranism, Knoxism, Wesleyanism or one of the two schools of Pentecostalism! See the church is all split and divided into all these “isms”. How can God take a church unto Himself which is scattered throughout spiritual Babylon? Face it, that is where you and I were located before God did something to awaken people in spiritual Babylon causing a people to look back to “THEIR WORD”. Now God is going to bring a people together around the word and let them see if what they had always believed was truth or error. Believe me, it is going to be some thrashing! God is fully aware He cannot come for His church as long as she is still embracing much of the devil’s word or is still in that kind of mess of ideas and teachings which is completely contrary to “THEIR WORD”.

 

You could not get a Methodist to teach Eternal Security any more than you could get a Baptist to teach Sanctification, yet both were important truths of “THEIR (apostles) WORD”. Many Baptists were just as sanctified as the Methodist, they just did not understand the teaching of it. And there were many of the good old Methodist who were just as eternally secure as were the Baptists in their revelation, they just did not understand the teaching of it. Many were just as much preordained before the foundation of the world as were the Knox or Presbyterian followers, they just did not understand the revelation of it. Thus were many of these various people in separate groups separated from all these truths simply because there wasn’t a true light on those teachings in that hour. God had reserved all the true light on the various framework doctrines of His salvation which He had been restoring during the reformation hour to be given at a certain hour when He would do something special for the endtime people and we would all come together and be restored back fully ro THEIR WORD (the apostles’ teaching)!

 

HUNGRY FOR TRUTH

 

I remember well hearing those Methodist Seminary teachers declaring Wesley said this and Wesley said that, until I had become so hungry for something else. One day I heard a Baptist minister on the radio offering a book on eternal security. After ordering and reading it I thought, there is still yet more truth than what I have heard in a long time.

 

Our Methodist pastor was called away for a while leaving me in charge of his charge of four churches. I thought, now is my chance to teach more truth. Taking Romans 8:29 for a text I taught PREDESTINATION AND ETERNAL SECURITY. I noticed they were getting nervous, but I never thought much about it seeing I too was a Methodist and all this was good sound Bible teaching we needed. I simply could not understand what was wrong with the people. The church superintendent came past one day and said, “Raymond, I enjoyed your talk and admire your bravery, but I don’t think it wise or nice to talk about something your church does not believe in. If I were you I would lay these teachings in the background.”

 

PART 5 – THEIR WORD RESTORED INTO ONE MESSAGE

 

For days I walked under condemnation when about that time a brother came by and told me about Bro. Branham, saying he is a prophet and began telling me things that happened in Africa. He is going to have a weekend meeting in Jeffersonville, and I wish you would come. For days I had worked in he field and couldn’t get these biblical teachings I had taught off my heart.

 

Accepting the brother’s invitation to hear this man of God, whom many already felt was a prophet, I went to hear him. Eventually a little man stepped from the prayer room, walked to the Bible stand and prayed, opened his Bible and took his text from Genesis and he began to feed my hungry heart. He began to open my understanding of something based on the scriptures and it wasn’t long until he was on PREDESTINATION and ETERNAL SECURITY. When he finished that night I knew the things in my bosom were of God! Why? Because this little man took the scriptures and made them real. He made the scriptures come alive in my soul.

 

CHRIST IS THE MESSAGE

 

It wasn’t long until I realized this man had a message from God, yet the pathetic part was, many people got confused thinking the man himself was the message! There is a vast difference between the two though some, failed to differentiate between the two. No, he was not the message, Jesus Christ is the message. Christ has always been the message! But wherever possible the devil has always sought to belittle Christ in whatever way possible. For one thousand years the devil sold the world on the idea that Christ was not the Mighty God robed in flesh, (I Timothy 3:16) was not the one Israel would look for as the Messiah who would be Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace, Counselor and the one called Wonderful (Isaiah 9:6). Satan sold the world on the idea that Christ was the second person of the Godhead. God is the pendulum of the whole thing, but the devil wanted to belittle Him, making Him only to be the second person. And finally if that wasn’t bad enough he set his earthly mother over Him (Jesus) as His head! Blessed Mother of God, they say. Don’t people realize God never had a mother! In the beginning was God. Christ the man had an earthly mother, but not the spirit God. (Galatians 4:4) What a pathetic mess the religious world turned into as they forsook “THEIR WORD” (apostles word) and embraced strictly a program of the devil, filled with only carnal words and teaching! And if God had left the whole religious world as it was back there in the dark ages we truly would be in a mess! Spiritually speaking, we would have been a million miles from “THEIR WORD”, but God never intended the church to remain forever away from “THEIR WORD”. Only through “THEIR WORD” will we know who Christ and God actually is. Satan never intends for you to know who Christ is.

 

PROTESTANTISM PRODUCED MANY FAITHS

 

As time progressed through the reformation after 1500, through various reformation leaders God, little by little, was seen restoring “THEIR WORD” (truths taught by the apostles). Yet denominations continued to spring up everywhere around these restored truths, accepting some of these truths and rejecting others. It had boiled down to this kind of belief, you embrace your faith and I will embrace mine. This peculiar idea taught in Babylon concerning many faiths lacked a long way from being the unity and oneness to embrace only one faith which the early church walked in (Ephesians 4:4-6) as well as what the endtime church would be walking in, which Christ would come for at the end of the age. Therefore, it was of necessity that God would send a man at the end of the age with a very special office to do something for the church.

 

SENDING ELIJAH

 

For that work God intended to do we should examine a prophecy in Malachi 4:5-6. (5) “Behold, I send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: (6) And he shall turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to the fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Contrary to what you many think, John the Baptist did not fulfill all that scripture, only the first part as shown in Luke 1:17. Then who will fulfill the later setting of Malachi 4:5-6? It is not one of the two Jewish prophets clothed in the spirit of Elijah sent to Israel who fulfills this scripture. According to Revelation 11, that man does not restore the hearts of the children back to the fathers. The Jews converted under that ministry simply receive a revelation of who Christ is as seen by the fact they all have the father’s name written in their forehead, (Revelation 14:1). Without going into elaborate detail, since we have already published several articles on Malachi 4:5-6 showing how there are two different, separate time periods for that spirit of Elijah to be manifested on earth, we will simply say, the office of Elijah to restore the hearts of the children back to the fathers was not to be fulfilled until the end of the grace age, sometime before the church left the world. This office of the spirit of Elijah is to be a restoring office. The officework would restore the hearts of the endtime children of the grace age back to the original teaching of those apostles, or restore us back to “THEIR WORD” whereby we at the endtime might embrace that faith whereby we could be included in the prayer of John 17:20.

 

RESTORING CHILDREN’S HEART

 

Now I ask you, when God brings this spirit of Elijah on the scene, is He going to bring something out of obscurity which is so fantastic and so unrelated to the Bible that what he has to say would become a message completely and totally set apart from “THEIR WORD” (apostolic fathers of the faith)! Absolutely not. If that man brought such a message that was completely apart from the faith of the apostolic fathers then he did not fulfill B-part of Malachi 4:5-6 by turning us back to “THEIR WORD” or to the faith of our apostolic fathers, Paul, Peter, James, John, etc.! But Malachi declares this office of Elijah is ordained to turn the hearts of the children back to (the faith of) the fathers! With this Old Testament prophet office in operation at the end of the age shows me God is going to produce a people who will be in the same likeness of character, of spirit, of faith, of devotion and unity as were those early apostolic Christians who in the beginning lived off “THEIR WORD”. No, this man who came in the spirit and power of Elijah did not come with a revelation which would take people away from the contents of this Bible or “THEIR WORD”. That would be completely contrary to the purpose of Malachi’s prophecy concerning the sending of this spirit office. Malachi declared this man would turn our hearts back to the true faith of our apostolic fathers! Beloved, the man who filled this office never asked any human being to preach him, to exalt him, to lift him upon a pedestal. No, that man, who because of the Old Testament prophet office he fulfilled and being on the scene when he was, his office alone made him the church age messenger to Laodicea, he never once asked anyone to believe anything unscriptural. He asked only that we believe Jesus Christ was the same yesterday, today and forever! The mother church of the dark ages had diminished Christ from that high position and all her daughters had simply followed suit!

 

PLACED THEIR WORD INTO ONE MESSAGE

 

That man did have a message and that message was the revelation of how to take all these great restored truths of their word which had been restored through the reformation hour and tie all these truths back together, placing them all back into their proper setting into this Bible where they originally came from. William Marrion Branham, prophet messenger to this age, took all these great restored truths, and placed them all together in one message and told the church, as the apostolic fathers had taught the church all these truths in one message so must we of the endtime do likewise.

 

PROPHET DID NOT RESTORE FRAMEWORK DOCTRINES

 

Shocking as it may sound to some, this prophet messenger did not restore FAITH, did not restore PREDESTINATION; did not even restore ETERNAL SECURITY nor the BAPTISM OF THE HOLY GHOST or even the REVELATION THAT GOD WAS ONE and BAPTISM should be performed in the NAME OF JESUS CHRIST. Well, if he didn’t restore any of that, what did he restore? Watch carefully. William Marrion Branham, under the anointing of God, was the first man since that first church age to ever take every one of these truths and place them all together giving them their proper place in the plan of God and preach them all in the same message. He is the first man to take these great restored truths over which people for more than 400 years had fussed, argued and disputed almost to the point of blasphemy, this man gathered up every one of these restored (hated and despised) truths of “THEIR WORD” scattered here and there and placed them all into one message, a Bible message, giving each truth its proper perspective in the framework of revelation and showed to the church how to embrace and TEACH THEM! When he did this, the Bible made more sense to people than it had in almost 1700 years. That is why this prophet would say, if Paul taught ONE GOD, SO HAVE I; IF PAUL BAPTIZED IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST THE LORD, SO HAVE I; IF HE TAUGHT PREDESTINATION AND ETERNAL SECURITY OF THE TRUE BELIEVER, SO HAVE I!

 

Many fundamental churches didn’t even know where the millennium was to be. They didn’t know whether it would be on earth, some other planet or in heaven or just where or when, or whether there would even be one. The prophet to the age said there would be a millennium and that millennium would be right here on earth! That is all he needed to say.

 

GIVEN SEAL REVELATION

 

Now to prove the fact this prophet did take the teaching of ONE GOD, SANCTIFICATION, BAPTISM OF THE HOLY GHOST , ETERNAL SECURITY, PREDESTINATION and all these other restored truths by various reformation leaders and place them all together in their proper perspective, back in the framework of the Bible message, and teach them as a true revelated message of truth as taught by the apostles, look what God did, God caused this little man to receive a revelation of what the Seals in Revelation 6 were. No, these seals were not written in another book, they were written in the Bible. By pure revelation of the spirit, revelation, which I remind you had not been given to anyone in the church since the first age, this prophet broke that first seal, or that first white horse rider, and told us it was none other than that devilish old antichrist spirit which was seen rising up in the close of the first church age. Paul declared that truth in II Thessalonians 2:3-12 where he spoke somewhere around 55 A.D., declaring the mystery of iniquity doeth already work and Paul referred to the climax of this work as being in the son of perdition. While John the Beloved declared in I John 2:18-19, somewhere around 90 A.D. that there were already many antichrists plaguing the church. But please understand in John’s statement he is not referring to the major or main antichrist, (son of perdition, the one anointed to destroy) but of the minor antichrist leading up to that one.

 

REVEALING WHO MYSTERY RIDER IS

 

When the prophet, by revelation, taught these seals in Revelation 6, his teachings made more sense and fell in line better with the scripture and church history that what all these theologians are declaring who want to place those seals at the time of great tribulation at the end of the age! The revelatory teaching of the first four seals by the prophet was all built around who that mysterious rider was, first seen riding the white horse in the first seal. The rider of the first horse is the same rider seen on the other three horses, only the other horses are different colors to illustrate what effect the antichrist had on the Christian church as he rode down through church history, or rode down through these first four seals and plunged the religious world into the dark ages. The name of the rider of the four various colored horses was Death, and Hell followed with him.

 

When that prophet took church history and built past church history around those first four seals, that completely vindicated it and made the revelation he had received a proven fact. Did that make church history to become scripture? Not at all. Your Bible is the only book of scriptures. Church history only proved the accuracy of the revelation. Thus the historical facts only proved what the revelation of the seals was saying, to be true. The first four seals spoke of what has already transpired and church history has already recorded for us all these historical events which were brought out in the first four seals in a living people of this hour who did not live back in those times. History simply declares what has been. What we see briefly written in the scripture is more thoroughly covered by church history concerning that period of time, the scripture can, by no means, go into the detail church history does.

 

CART BEFORE HORSE

 

Allow me to close with this probing question to every honest heart who follows this endtime message in order to be restored to the revelation of “THEIR WORD” (our apostolic fathers). If you were to go out into this world preaching salvation to sinners who would you preach? The answer should be, none other than the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore I warn you, if you go forth to help convert sinners to salvation but spend far more time informing the sinner that God has sent a prophet, etc., than you do telling the poor lost sinner 2000 years ago a man by the name of Jesus Christ came and died to save them, we have absolutely placed the cart before the horse. We are going down the road backward.

 

May I say, “THEIR WORD” (the apostles word) which you were restored back to by the office of the spirit of Elijah resting upon a gentile prophet is just as real, just as vital, and needful today as “THEIR WORD” has ever been. If God can find some people who are simple minded enough to allow Him to paint a true revelatory picture in their spiritual minds as to what this little man did say while on earth, are you aware these people today would not have to be mere repetitionists! Of course not. No one else in church history ever had to be. If that prophet to the age were still alive today you would find him preaching out of the pages of that Bible.

 

No doubt having made the statement the prophet to the age did not restore FAITH, PREDESTINATION, ETERNAL SECURITY, SANCTIFICATION, etc., some of you may be as the brother I received a phone call from who had naturally heard just the opposite, he asked the question, If the prophet didn’t restore all these things, what did the scripture mean in Matthew 17:11 when the disciples asked Jesus, Why do the scribes teach Elijah must first come and RESTORE ALL THINGS! Jesus answered truly, he must come and restore all things. The man asked, what did Jesus mean by that statement?

 

DID NOT RESTORE ALL THINGS

 

Allow me to caution you by saying that even with the coming of the spirit of Elijah on a gentile prophet office at the end of the age he did not restore all things by any means. He came and took all the Bible truths that had been restored through the reformation and placed them all back into one message. He even broke the seven seals of Revelation 6 and brought into light what the reformers could not because of their hour, and just as in John’s ministry when that spirit of Elijah restored all which was necessary to be known in that hour in order for believers to be ready for the first coming of Christ, likewise did the spirit of Elijah on this gentile prophet office restore all things necessary for the endtime Laodicean saints, or true seed, to be ready for the coming of Christ to receive His bride. He restored all the mystery necessary to the endtime people to fulfill Revelation 10:7. He restored all things that was necessary for the gentile church to be ready for Christ’s coming yet the restoring work did not cover the restoring of all things!

 

3RD PHASE FOR JEW

 

What about after the gentile church is secretly gathered out and the gospel returns back to the Jew to gather out the 144,000. Never forget, that spirit of Elijah will be in that hour also in Israel resting once again upon another Jew, and once again he will do some more restoring, and during that appearing will complete the restoring of all things of Matthew 17:11. One Jew who is referred to in Revelation 11 as one of the prophets will have received the spirit of Elijah while the other Jewish prophet in Israel who gives the antichrist a fit of rage received the spirit of Moses, and together what a work they do. In that hour the restoring work of the spirit of Elijah completes the words of Matthew 17:11, THAT ELIAS WILL RESTORE ALL THINGS! In that hour he will restore all things necessary for the 144,000 who are to receive the revelation of who Jesus is, that He is God, to fulfill Isaiah 9:6, etc. With that final operation among the Jews, that completes the mighty office work for the restoration spirit of Elijah!

 

Therefore, do not think for a moment, as so many have, that Matthew 17:11 applies strictly to the office work of Bro. Branham, it does not! Bro. Branham restored what was necessary for the gentile bride church to know, yet he restored nothing to the Jews which is the final step in God’s restoring program.

 

The prophet took these restored truths of “THEIR WORD” given to reformation leaders, which had all this time remained through the hour of protestantism separate and blocked off from their proper perspective in scripture through denominationalism. This prophet restored back those truths blocked off by protestantism into their proper revelating setting within the proper framework of the scripture. I repeat, it is the first time any man has ever done this since the days of the apostles! This was his message! It was to tell poor mankind, scattered throughout all this Babylonian religious denominational manmade systems, how to get himself free from all that mess and get back to the revelation of “THEIR WORD”, which is none other than the word of God; to get into Christ, the Word whereby God can begin to lead our lives and place His great merciful arm of love about us, to teach and instruct the church in order to lead and guide us whereby we may grow in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and in fellowship with Him, so we could all walk in the same revelation and see God alike. And the holy scriptures or “THEIR WORD” would once again become the ruling factor of the church. Even if the day came they would burn your Bible, that revelation of the word would be in you. The scripture says, being born again not of corruptible seed but of incorruptible seed, which is the engrafted word of God. Engrafted means it is the revelation of God’s thought which is recorded in “THEIR WORD”, embedded in your spiritual life and mine. Thus if the revelation is in your spiritual mind you can’t help but live and respond to that revelation of “THEIR WORD”, which is Christ’ word, that now feeds your soul and caused your soul to react back to “THEIR WORD”.

 

The Three Woes

Today we are approaching a subject about which for years I searched for the answer, tried to link together certain verses of scripture in the Book of Revelation. How often we read over something, never once laying any importance on some certain word (such as woe) when that may be the very word which holds the key to unlock the hidden mystery. The word WOE found in Rev. 8:12-13 under the fourth trumpet, certainly has no reference to the term Whoa used in the sense of stopping a team of horses. No! On the contrary, Webster’s Dictionary defines WOE as relating to extreme sorrow; to extreme grief. As a matter of fact, WOE used here indicates to be immersed (covered) in grief or sorrow.

Dan. 9:27 and Dan. 12:1-13 both speak of this great hour of extreme sorrow and extreme anguish (the WOES). Jesus in Matt. 24, Luke 21 and Mark 13 uses many statements which referred strictly to the work of the anti-Christ in his relation to Israel during the middle of that 70th week. Christ called the period of 3 ½ , the last half of Daniel’s 70th week, a time of trouble coming upon the earth (especially for Israel), a time such as had never been before nor would ever be again. This period spoken of by our Lord, recorded in Matthew, Luke and Mark is actually Christ’s own way of discussing that precise time period during the middle of the week when those THREE WOES of Rev. 8:13 are announced. Matt. 24:15-22. Remember, in relation to this final 70th week, we intend to show what event on earth triggered these WOES, secondly at what time during the final week these THREE WOES were announced and administered and finally, just what are these THREE WOES and how they affect mankind.

FOURTH TRUMPET JUDGMENT

Rev. 8:12-13 where the THREE WOES are pronounced follows the blast of the fourth trumpet angel who is none other than the fourth trumpet judgment angel who, because of what is transpiring in Jerusalem during the middle of the final week, smites a third part of the sun, a third part of the moon and a third part of the stars. As the third part of all this was darkened, the day shone not for a third part neither did the night.

WOE SPOKEN THREE TIMES

Verse 13 declares I (John) beheld and heard an angel flying through the midst of the heavens saying WOE, WOE, WOE, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels which are yet to sound! Bear in mind what WOE means, extreme sorrow, extreme grief or being immersed in sorrow or anguish. Nowhere in Revelations has the word WOE appeared until introduced following the sounding of the fourth trumpet angel. When it was introduced the word WOE was spoken three separate times. This lets me know there are to be three separate and distinct WOES and all three WOES relate to what Jesus called the time of trouble such as the world had never seen. Better still, the THREE WOES are sounded in the hour when the world is brought strictly under satanic control. Hence, the THREE WOES pertain to no other time period. These Three Woes are poured out as the result of what the anti-Christ did in Jerusalem when he breaks his covenant with Israel during the middle of the 70th week!

PART 1 – EVENTS OF FIRST 3 ½ YEARS LEADING TO WOES

ANOINTING ON TWO JEWS

The chart is equally divided off in two separate sections, each section having a 3 ½ year period, totaling seven years. It illustrates how once this final 70th week of Daniel’s prophecy officially opens by the anti-Christ making a covenant with Israel (Dan. 9:27), that two Jewish prophets begin prophesying in the land of Israel. Rev. 11:3 declares for a space of one thousand two hundred three score days, these two Jewish prophets who are God’s witnesses in Israel, prophesy in sackcloth. According to Rev. 11:6, during the days of their (3 ½) years prophesying to Israel, these two prophets have power to smite the earth with all manner of plagues as often as they desire. Smiting the earth with plagues is not to be looked upon as some suppositional thing, because they are literal plagues which will affect nature, vegetation as well as atmospheric conditions, even to closing up the heavens where it rains not and also turning water to blood there in the Middle East. We can think of only two such prophets in all Israel’s history anointed with such miraculous power as this and that was Moses and Elijah. To clarify once and for all who these two Jewish prophets are and at the same time show how the sounding of these first three trumpet angels’ judgments of Rev. 8:7-11 relates strictly to the ministry of these two prophets who, during the first half of the 70th week, are smiting a third part of the earth (mainly the Middle East) with plagues, are absolutely not the original Old Testament Moses and Elijah returned to this earth, but instead are none other than two Jewish prophets in Israel anointed with two of the greatest anointing of God ever expressed upon earth, anointing which rested upon both Moses and Elijah and may I say, without question these anointing are two of the greatest ever to rest upon a prophetic office which rested upon the Prophets, Moses and Elijah.

ANOINTING OF MOSES & ELIJAH

Remember, when God anointed Moses that anointing carried a threefold purpose (1) it was to bring forth an exodus for the Israelite people (2) it was to establish a law and give Israel a prophetic word which she had been without for over 400 years. However, when God anointed Elijah with a prophetic office, it was during a time when Israel was in national apostasy. Israel had forsaken the law and word of God which Moses had give her. Elijah’s was a prophetic anointing to challenge that nation Israel who had drifted into national apostasy, to return to God. It was an anointing to restore back to the people something they had lost (remember the contest at Mt. Carmel) The anointing resting on Elijah, not only closed the heavens for 3 ½ years but challenged the very people who should have stayed with the word of God to return to the word.

SIMILARITY OF EVENTS

This lets me know these are the two special supernatural anointings, which will once again reappear and rest upon two Jewish prophets, as Israel enters into her 70th and final week of time (last 7 years). Look at the similarity. Although the Jew in that hour will already be back in the land, we realize the anointing of Moses will not be used again to plague Egypt (turning water to blood and so forth) or even be used freeing Israel from Egyptian bondage and escorting her through the Red Sea, nevertheless the needs are very similar. The two anointings will be expressed and manifested during a period when God has been steadily returning Jews to the land from every corner of the globe. Beloved, that in itself truly is the greatest exodus Israel ever had. Secondly, the fact that it is the spirit of Elijah resting upon one of the two Jews shows that those Jewish people who did return to the land by the hand of God returned from among the gentiles to fulfill all scripture, and spiritually speaking, the hour Israel enters into her final 70th week will find her in the greatest hour of apostasy she has ever faced. We do not mean to imply there will not be any true, sincere, orthodox Jews in Israel. Sure there will, but they will only be in the minority. The nation or the majority (even now) lives in apostasy. Israel, having been dispersed among gentile nations, returns to her homeland bringing with her many theological ideas concerning the Holy writings and her prophets Israel returned bringing with her more modern interpretations and theological ideas as to what their prophets of old meant. Never has there been an hour in Israel’s history when she was any more in apostasy than today (Example, offering a hen or rooster on the day of atonement instead of a lamb as they are commanded for the sins of the people) Spiritually they are in apostasy while physically they are in an exodus. Therefore such a setting as this, an exodus as well as apostasy is the perfect setting for the reappearing of these two great anointings which rested on Moses and Elijah of old.

WOES EXPRESSED IN MIDDLE OF WEEK

According to Rev. 8:13 the three dreadful woes of extreme anguish were announced once the fourth trumpet angel had sounded, therefore, I ask you, according to prophetic time which will be going on earth, exactly when does the fourth trumpet angel sound precisely in the middle of Daniel’s 70th week!!


SOUNDING OF THE FIRST THREE TRUMPETS

Briefly let’s acquaint ourselves with the operation of these first three trumpet judgment angels in Rev. 8:7-11 to see whether or not their ministries are separate judgments being poured out, apart from the judgment ministry of these two prophets. Recall, these first three trumpet judgment angels were announcing their judgments in glory however, when their judgments were released to actually hit the third part of the earth, that judgment released, was administered strictly through the ministry of these two Jewish prophets who were striking the earth with plagues as often as they desired. Let’s just see if that is scripture; let’s see if these first three judgment trumpet angels of Rev. 8:7-11 are doing anything more than announcing judgments which are actually being expressed or fulfilled through the earthly ministries of these two Jewish prophets during the first half of that week!

A SEPARATE EVENT?

First, If trumpet judgments sounded by these first three angels are something entirely different and completely apart or separate from the ministry of these two earthly Jewish prophets, then look what you are going to run into. We are dealing with precisely the same earthly time period when both the ministry of the two prophets as well as the three judgment angels were in progress, and secondly, if these three angels ministry are separate, then they are doing nothing but a re-run or repeat or re-enactment as to what these two Jewish prophets are already doing on earth. Beloved, if they are separate works as some think, then you would have the three judgment angels sounding their particular judgment to be felt or expressed on the earth and then along would come the two prophets with their ministry almost repeating identically what the angels in the first half of the week had already done.

JUDGMENT VS. WRATH

Remember all 7 of these angels (Rev. 8 and 9) sounding trumpets are judgment angels, not wrath angels. For an illustration between the judgment of God and the wrath of God let us examine Moses in Egypt. Did not he, in Egypt, by the hand of God turn water into blood? What was God doing? He was pronouncing judgment (not wrath) upon Egypt. Moses, God said, speak to the dust and lice will come forth. What was that? More judgment upon Egypt. I ask you, did any of these many judgments against Egypt bring Egypt to repentance. You know they did not. Speak to the waters Moses and they will bring forth frogs. What was that? Still more judgment upon Egypt. However, note, when God destroyed Egypt’s might (her army) in the Red Sea, there beloved has much more than judgment administered, that was his wrath being poured out.

COVENANT SIGNING TRIGGERS WEEK

Try to visualize these two Jewish prophets in Israel, fulfilling not a wrath ministry but a judgment office work against Israel soon after Daniel’s 70th week is triggered into motion by Israel signing a special peace and prosperity covenant with the anti-Christ for seven years. Recall, that final week cannot possibly begin until the anti-Christ signs that covenant with Israel. True, he signed with other nations also, but that signing did not affect prophecy. Signing with Israel triggers that 70th week. Dan. 9:27.

UNIFIED EUROPE

However, before this 70th week begins, something has happened in Europe and for survival sake the frightened European world will be forced to do something quickly. Out of what the Western world does, however soon it may be – 12 months or 3 years, whatever, the world will be introduced to that long prophesied European 10 nation beastly system. When that Western European beastly system with seven heads and ten horns (Rev. 13) is finally formed in Western Europe, becoming that long prophesied united (Roman) beast system of the old resurrected Roman Empire it will be headed up under one head who by that hour has successfully united all the ten political governments of western Europe into one powerful government; united also all her economies into one and also, that one apostate church system is already formed portrayed in Rev. 17, which for a period of time will ride this beast before later being thrown off and trampled to death under its feet. The head is non other than the anti-Christ, the pope who in that hour becomes the voice or mouthpiece of this powerful beast system of Europe before the 70th week of Daniel’s prophecy (to affect Israel) begins. In actuality it will be an hour for man’s final effort for survival, political, monetary and military. True, it will be mankind’s way of mustering every ounce of his political efforts hoping through it somehow to be able to survive. After 6000 years of constant struggle this will be mankind’s culmination day. However, little does the world realize it is also to become Satan’s coronation day because when that hour arrives which officially opens Daniel’s 70th week, naturally the economical pressure in the Middle East will be most severe. If you think Israel is hard pressed today, just wait until time arrives which opens this final 70th week, especially as the world’s economy becomes more and more strained, even reaching the breaking point.

ISRAEL SIGNS UNDER PRESSURE

By compelling present world conditions existing in that hour, little Israel will be forced to side with this beast system. Yet bear in mind, the spiritual orthodox Jew will never have any part with what is transpiring. It is only Israel’s political or apostate Jew, who for survival sake, will unite with it signing this covenant agreement (thus beginning her final and 70th week.) It is the political Jew who can not see his being re-gathered back into the land has had any definite fulfillment of prophecy, who goes for it. That is the Jew who grabs this opportunity offered by the man of sin for survival and peace.

FULFILLING PROPHECY

Such an act begins the fulfilment of John 5:43 where Jesus declared before the ruling Jews to whom he was attempting to present himself as Messiah God – I come to you in my Father’s name and you did not receive me (as Messiah God). But the savior looks further down in that hour when Israel will already be in their 70th week and continues saying, but if another come in his name you will receive him. And with open arms during that hour they will receive the anti-Christ who comes in his own name. However, the complete fulfillment of Christ’s statement will not appear until the middle of the week when the anti-Christ presents himself as their Messiah God and they accept him. As the covenant is signed, according to Dan. 9:27, the 70th week officially opens. The Jewish race who in no way appreciates the Catholic Church nor cares anything for the pope will nevertheless, in that hour, in order to preserve their monetary system that apostate Jew will be willing to bow to anything. Why not? He can easily accept this period of peace and prosperity under the anti-Christ as his Messiah, after all to many Jews in Israel today the coming of the Messiah is nothing more than a period of peace and prosperity. That is what the anti-Christ promised: peace and prosperity.

WEEK OPENED UNAWARE

When the man of sin signs this covenant with Israel, neither he nor Israel is aware this signing has officially opened the 70th week of Daniel, because whatever signing the anti-Christ did before with other nations had absolutely no bearing on scripture whatsoever, it is only this particular signing with Israel that officially opens the70th week and brings God’s two prophets upon the scene rebuking Israel for what she did. It is the signing with that nation (Israel) that automatically displeases God and we begin to hear these seven trumpet judgments in glory blasting away during that week. Keep in mind, not all the Jews in Israel are apostate Jews because one element knows why he is back in the land and is impatiently awaiting for what they believe to be the first coming of their Messiah God. What the apostate Jew did in signing the covenant angered God and set off the 7 judgment angels in Rev. 8:9 to blasting away.

ANGRY GOD SENDS PROPHETS

No sooner is that covenant agreement signed (Dan. 9:27) than God, now so displeased with Israel’s actions, sends these two great anointings, on two Jewish men in Israel who begins rebuking Israel. Beloved, are you aware if we are living in the day of Christ’s soon return, these two Jewish prophets are already on this earth and although no one knows who they are or what area of the earth they may have originated, one thing is for sure, they won’t be nine year old kids in that hour. They are two Jewish men with a basic purpose, they known who they are, what they are supposed to do and they well know once their work is completed the anti-Christ is going to kill them. Furthermore, they will know what God has been doing among the gentiles even before their hour as well as what God is doing in their hour and most of all, what he will be doing in the near future. They will not preach, taking a text from a certain chapter in the Bible as men do today, instead they prophesy. They foretell things to the Jew in that hour, things which are imminent, things which are pending, things to happen in just a few short months and years; things God’s people will soon be facing in Israel as well as what Jews throughout the world will soon be facing. Standing in the streets of Jerusalem they will pronounce judgments.

JUDGMENT OF APOSTATE JEW

Ask yourself the question, on whom and for what purpose do they pronounce judgment? It is against those apostate political Jews who favored the signing of that agreement. This judgment is God’s way of trying to correct that political Jew for his wrong and error in linking up with that system. Can’t you see that nation in her political endeavor during the first half of that 70th week. Today, Israel is truly prospering. She may have a high inflation rate of 35 per cent and pay 86 per cent of her salaries for taxes, but as far as her crops are concerned she is flourishing. Already, she is exporting all kinds of fruits and vegetables into the Common Market nations of Europe who one day forms into this beast system. Recently, Israel signed a pact linking her more closely into the Common Market nations, enabling her for a considerable period of time to export all her fruit and vegetables into Europe for sale. Yet, in that hour, because the political element of Israel links up with the anti-Christ who heads up the European Common Market system, this greatly displeases God, therefore watch what he does.

AFFECTS MIDDLE EAST

As the final prophetic week of seven years opens, God is angry! The first three trumpet judgment angels in Rev. 8:7-11 sound their trumpets and for 1260 days on earth through the ministry of those two prophets, a third part of the world feels the effects. A third part of the vegetation and water is affected. Note beloved, it is only a third part of this world which is affected by what these 3 judgment angels and two prophets are doing. This lets me know what is taking place on earth through the sounding of those first three trumpet judgment angels is happening only in the Middle East where approximately one third of everything in the world is. No, the sounding of these three angels will not affect the entire planet earth, only a third part. This by no means even affects the Far East where today dwells your oriental race of people who will be busy preparing for Armageddon, which comes at the end of the 70th week.

WHY NOT FAR EAST

Why does that ministry not affect the Far East, your oriental race, referred to in Rev. 16 as the kings of the East, which definitely is the one side of the communistic picture seen coming to Armageddon. Recall, none of these four world beast powers or empires of Daniel 7:1-28, Babylon, Media-Persia, Greece or Rome, ever ruled the Far East where dwells the oriental race. Therefore, when those first three trumpet angels expressed their judgment powers in the earth, their powers being actually ministered through the authority of these two prophetic offices in Israel, affecting only a third part of the world. Therefore it was bodies of water around Israel which become blood, not in the Far East but Middle East!

DROUGHT AND FAMINE

Did not Rev. 11:6 declare these two prophets had power to shut the heavens? Did not the Prophet Elijah bring such judgment against the ten northern tribes in Israel declaring, it will not rain until I call for it? You remember the story of what happened in Samaria, they all practically starved. Though today Israel has plenty of food, in that hour when those two prophets get through prophesying judgment upon Israel, you will not only see her barley and wheat fields drying up and parching but her forests also. In Joel 1:19 he prophesies the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness and the flame hath burned all the trees of the field. Not literal fire but the fire of drought seeing no rain will come for 3 ½ years during the days of their prophecy. When that spirit of Elijah stands in Jerusalem prophesying during the first half of that 70th week, accompanied by that spirit of Moses, naturally that political element of the Jew is going to be humiliated and furious as Pharaoh was down in Egypt. I can see those two prophets clothed with these two great anointings saying, alright, if you do not believe we have THUS SAITH THE LORD, you will believe us next year when you try to put out your crops and nothing will grow.

STRATEGY DURING FIRST HALF

Remember after that signing, for 3 ½ years while these prophets are busy prophesying in Israel, the anti-Christ himself is also going to be quite busy. For a while everything in the western gentile world will be prospering and the average man of the world is content saying, what this great leader has to offer is just what we have always needed. During the first part of that week (first 3 ½ years) peace and prosperity to a certain degree will reign, but wait until later (last 3 ½ years) it turns out to be a false peace for the world. At first the man of sin will be a most eloquent man, a great speechmaker filled with wonderful promises for a glorious future of peace. The western world is saying, we need to be united. But let me tell you one thing, God sure did not want Israel united with this thing. Yet since she did unite, two prophets stand in her midst and for that first half of Daniel’s 70th week they not only prophesy but also smite that part of the world with plagues!

JEWS SEALED

According to Revelation Chaps. 7 and 14, while these two men prophesy during the first half of the week, there is going to be a selected and predestinated element of Jews who will receive a revelation. It is no other than the 144,000 Jews from the House of Israel (Rev. 7:2-8). Today, at present, according to the latest American Jewish Yearbook we are told throughout the world the Jewish population stands at better than 14,150,000. More than 5 ½ million (estimated 5,730,000) of these Jews live in the U.S. constituting 2.8 percent of the population. And get this, this figure is by far larger than that living in Israel! Israel has a Jewish population of 2,806,000. There are more Jews in American than in any other country of the world, including Russia who still has 2,680,000; France, 550,000; Argentina 475,000; Great Britain, 410,000; and Canada with 305,000; that is not including persecuted Jews in Arab countries as well as other places.

SACRIFICE ALTAR REOPENED

You must understand, all those Jews will never return to Israel, however, there will be enough returning that 144,000 can be sealed in with a revelation delivered by these two prophets. The seal of the living God is the Holy Ghost (Eph. 4:30). Who knows, some of these other Jews may go to Israel in that hour and be fortunate enough to hear those two prophets seeing Israel will, in the beginning of her 70th week at least have her sacrificial altar in her hands (Dan. 9:27, 12:11), whereby she may offer animal sacrifices unto Jehovah and a Jewish temple in the process of being built will certainly stimulate Jews throughout the world as they no doubt will be called upon to make great contributions toward the rebuilding of that temple. 144,000 predestinated seed of God in Israel during the first half of the 70th week will hear a revelation as well as received the seal of God, the Holy Ghost. That is why Rev. 7 pictures 144,000 of these people from the tribes of Israel sealed in their forehead and later Rev. 14 pictures this same 144,000 in an entirely different dramatic setting. Because later in Rev. 14 John saw that same 144,000 standing on Mt. Zion with a lamb (where Jerusalem) having their father’s name written in their forehead. Not written with an indelible pencil, of course not, but with the revelation of who Jesus Christ is. Note their obedience to the Spirit because it says they follow the Lamb wheresoever he goeth. Don’t literalize that, that is not 144,000 men of Israel trailing around behind a natural lamb! Then what is it? It is this special 144,000 who heard two prophets somewhere during the first half of that week, now with the Spirit of God in their lives, following that Holy Ghost wheresoever he leads them. Have you ever wondered where he would lead them? Don’t think for a moment these 144,000 are going to be sidetracked to sit it out on the bleachers until the millennium reign begins. No, these are servants of Jehovah and they have a job to do. That job will be getting a definite message to the millions of Jews still living in dispersion out in the gentile world and that message must be delivered quickly. No, it is not by any means a Salvation Message. It is not a message of grace whatsoever, it is a warning message to have nothing to do with this beast system in that hour seeing it has turned completely satanic (after the middle of the week).

FIRST HALF NOT TRIBULATION

Their job comes in the latter half of that prophetic week. Keep in mind, the first half of that 70th week can be very peaceful and is never spoken of as a time of tribulation because during that time the western world will be quite busy establishing their unification of one world government as well as their one world religion, etc. Yet may I remind you, God has other plans and this new world order under the anti-Christ isn’t going to progress very far before God steps in and disrupts it. Two prophets are prophesying in Israel pronouncing judgment and fulfilling those first three trumpet angel judgments in Rev. 8:7-11. According in Dan. 9:27 somehow the orthodox Jew in Israel has gained access to his old ancient temple grounds.

ERECTION OF TEMPLE UNNECESSARY

Yes, as that period of the 70th week is officially opened, by some means the orthodox Jew gains possession of his holy spot and animal sacrifices on the altar will have already begun, because remember, it won’t be necessary for the Jew to have his temple built at that hour, although probably it will have begun and with modern equipment it shouldn’t require too many years before completion. Nevertheless, the Jew will not wait for that temple to be erected to be again offering sacrifice because once that sacred rock altar now covered over by the Dome of the Rock falls into his hands he can immediately begin to offer sacrifices unto Jehovah. Thus, the first thing the orthodox Jew will do, after having received his temple ground where stands the sacrifice altar, is to do exactly what his ancestors did when they returned from Babylonian captivity under the prophets Zachariah and Haggai. Neither did they have a temple in that hour, yet once they found that sacrificial rock among the rubbish they began to sacrifice animals upon it several years before the second temple was ever rebuilt. As a matter of fact they hadn’t been back in the land two months before they erected an altar and began sacrifices. Such an act as this automatically places Israel on grounds of worship and communication with Jehovah. Later they erected a temple, wherein the priest could further function in his priestly administration.

GAINS TEMPLE GROUND

Thus according to Dan. 9:27, 12:11 scripture which doesn’t mention their temple as having been erected as the 70th week officially opened, although it does discuss the ability of the Jew being able to offer sacrifices on his sacred sacrificial altar, known today as the rock of Moriah. Once again as the Jew begins to offer burnt offerings unto Jehovah and as smoke raises from the sacred altar with a true ordained sacrifice burning upon that rock offering sacrifices once again places the nation back on the basis of a true scriptural fellowship with Jehovah. May I remind you also whenever God has a prophet on earth to benefit Israel as a nation, when they were in their homeland there was always an animal sacrifice on that sacred altar.

REVELATION THROUGH PROPHETS

Yes we are fully aware although there will be blood animal sacrifices on the sacrificial altar according to Dan. 9:27, the blood sacrifice on the altar itself has nothing whatsoever to do with any Jew receiving the true revelation of who Jesus Christ is ABSOLUTELY NOT! That revelation comes strictly from God through those two prophets, nevertheless the fact there is a continual sacrifice laying on the altar during the first half of that week speaks only that Israel has come in line with the Old Testament law which Israel, as God’s chosen people of old, was always recognized by and required to walk in. That altar setting only enables Israel as a people to now begin having fellowship with God whereby he may remove the veil from their eyes, especially the 144,000, giving to them the revelation of various scriptures. See, God doesn’t bypass anything he does everything exactly according to the pattern of the word. No we haven’t forgotten our subject of the THREE WOES, but seeing the THREE WOES do not appear until the middle of the 70th week, we began in the first part of the week working our way up to the middle where soon we shall see the operation of the THREE WOES. I can see that nation during the first half of that 70th week as the orthodox Jew, now with his temple ground in his possession, begin to fellowship Jehovah. Two mightily anointed Jewish prophets appear following the signing of his covenant in Dan. 9:27, standing on that ancient temple grounds prophesying and warning the people of the judgments to fall upon their nation as a result of what their nation did; telling them how displeased God is with it all, warning them what is soon to take place, seeing their good time is almost to be turned into a nightmare.

PART 2 – EVENTS IN THE MIDDLE OF WEEK PRODUCES WOES

Timewise we have reached the middle of the week. 3 ½ years or one thousand two hundred sixty days have passed which has actually concluded the ministry of these two prophets. Their job is finished. Nevertheless, the sealing away of the 144,000 has already taken place and in certain circles, a great revival has stirred Israel. Undoubtedly this stirring revival irritates and agitates greatly the man of sin, seeing such a revival sets off a social disorder or social disruption throughout the Jewish world. It causes an international as well as a social and political disturbance among the Jewish people which forces the anti-Christ to step in and change things as the anti-Christ makes his move against Israel, Dan. 9:27, 12:11 declares half of the prophetic week of seven years has passed, one thousand two hundred three score days. These two Jewish prophets have successfully brought spiritual life and revival to one element of Jews while at the same time brought plagues (Rev. 8:7-11) which is God’s judgment against the political Jew. But I ask you, did these plagues striking a third part of the earth (in the Middle East) cause the political apostate Jew to repent – THEY DID NOT! Instead he continues right on his own chosen way feeling everything is fine Israel has her temple area, more than that, Israel has her covenant of peace and prosperity with the anti-Christ and although the plagues against the land have been severe, the political minded Jew is still satisfied to allow things to remain as they are. Because of such an attitude, God must somehow judge that apostate Jew even more severely. Watch what he does.

ANTI-CHRIST MOVES IN FOURTH TRUMPET SOUNDS

Conditions have now so developed in Israel where in its necessitates action by the man of sin, Satan’s little prince to step in and do something and it is what he does in the middle of that week in Jerusalem which caused that fourth angel in the spirit world to smite a third part of the heavens, black out a third part of the moon, sun and stars whereby a third part of them gave no light and the day shown not for a third part as well as the night. It is then we hear in Rev. 8:13 the angel flying through heaven saying WOE, WOE, WOE to the inhabiters of the earth, ‘WOE’ meaning extreme sorrow, extreme misery, extreme suffering will come against the inhabitants of the earth. When? In the middle of the week! Why? Because God’s anger is so kindled against Israel for what she now does that he smites the third part of the heavens! We note with the first three trumpets, a third part of the earth was smitten, however, with the fourth trumpet God struck the heavens and pronounced THREE WOES to follow.

WOE ANNOUNCED UNDER FOURTH TRUMPET

Watch carefully what this man of sin does in the middle of the 70th week. The moment the anti-Christ is forced by conditions in Israel to do something, he automatically fulfilled Dan. 9:27 as well as Dan. 12:11, once he has destroyed Israel’s privilege to sacrifice. We are in the middle of that prophetic week and note in the middle of that week, the angel sounds the THREE WOES following the fourth trumpet blast when the anti-Christ destroyed the orthodox Jew’s privilege of being able to offer sacrifice, Satan’s prince, the anti-Christ desecrated the altar by rendering it useless. Dan. 9:27 declares he takes away the (daily) sacrifice from off the altar as well as stopping the evening oblation. The evening oblation is incense being offered up unto God at the evening time.

ALTAR DESOLATE – HOW LONG?

The Bible even tells how long the Jewish altar will remain desolate (useless) Dan. 12:11, a thousand two hundred ninety days, a period of 30 days over the allotted 3 ½ years for the great tribulation to run its course. Then once again the altar becomes useful for a millennium purpose. Blessed is he that waiteth, Daniel says 45 more days, which comes to a thousand three hundred thirty-five days. Seventy-five extra days in Dan. 12:12 added to that space of 1,230 days or the last half of the week, are days which by no means relate to the actual sacrifice itself, but seeing the anti-Christ himself being the abomination that maketh desolate polluted this holy area for the last 3 ½ years of the 70th week. Those days relate strictly to the cleaning up process or the rededication of the temple as well as the rededication of the altar. These extra days places you well over into the millennium reign when Christ is already on earth. Remember Christ will never step into that temple, though it was built for him, nor will he permit a sacrifice to go upon the altar to serve strictly for the millennium purpose until first all this cleaning up and rededicating process is completed. That is why you have those extra days mentioned in Dan. 12:11-12 past your normal Jewish 3 ½ years or 42 months. The altar shall be used again.

TEMPLE BUILT BEFORE MILLENNIUM

Some say they do not believe the Jewish temple is to be built before the coming of Christ. Well if the temple isn’t to be rebuilt before the coming of Christ, then please interpret. Rev. 11:1-2 which shows John being instructed to take a reed or measuring rod and go measure the temple, measure a temple, which I remind you is not the spiritual temple of God, whose house we are in the grace age if we have the Holy Ghost abiding in us (I Cor. 6:19) John was instructed to measure the actual temple of God. When the word of the Lord came to John on the Isle of Patmos, Herod’s temple lay in ruins! As a matter of fact all Jerusalem lay in ruins in 96 A.D. But an angel told John to rise and measure the temple, the altar and them that worship therein. Verse 2 says, but the court which is without the temple leave out, measure it not for it is given unto the Gentiles and the holy city shall be trod under foot forty and two months. This 42 months beloved is still future. For someone to tell me where, after 96 A.D. or anywhere in Israel’s past history was Jerusalem ever trod down by Gentiles for only a small period of 3 ½ years, as John says Jerusalem will be trodden down here! Some think the Jewish temple is built after Christ comes to reign for a thousand years and not during the final week of Daniel’s prophecy. How ignorant people can be to scripture. If the temple is not built until after Christ comes, then somewhere during the millennium you will have to say the Gentiles will overrun the temple area for forty-two months. What wild ideas some have concerning scripture.

ABOMINATION STANDING IN HOLY PLACE

Once the anti-Christ stops the daily sacrifice there in the midst of the week, he sets himself up in the temple being rebuilt and Dan. 12:11 refers to his act as the abomination that maketh desolate. Christ, picking up that very statement, elaborates further on it in Matt. 24:15 saying to the Jewish people facing that dark hour in the middle of the week, when you therefore shall see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet standing in the holy place (Dan. 12:11) whosoever readeth let him understand; let everybody in Judaea (Israel) flee for their lives into the mountains because then (for 3 ½ years) shall be great tribulation, etc.

DESIRES HONOR PAID IN SAME SPOT

Really brother, do you believe the anti-Christ will literally sit in the temple in Jerusalem? Well, how many believe that Jesus will sit in the temple in the millennium? Sure, Ezekiel 43, 44, and 45 that covers the anointing of the most holy. Remember, whatever God promised for mankind’s benefit, Satan will always run first with his counterpart. Recall how Zech. 14 declares every nation must go up to Jerusalem during the thousand years reign on to that temple area and worship the Lord of Host, keeping the feast of the tabernacles. Well, the devil wants the same honor and he wants that honor paid to him on the same spot of ground, in the same identical building! Because the Jews rejected the first manifestation of Christ, the Lord gives them the anti-Christ as a curse. This is God’s way of dealing with the apostate element of the nation. Then turns around in the millennium and gives that hour to the spiritual course of the nation. During the middle of the week he breaks his covenant and sets himself up in the temple of God. When he does God immediately releases hell upon the earth.

WHAT TRIGGERED 4TH TRUMPET

The fourth trumpet judgment sounded as the anti-Christ reached out and struck Israel’s altar and worship there in the middle of that week, took over the temple presenting himself as God and the apostate Jew went along with it! Whatever took place in the holy land by the middle of the week has caused the anti-Christ to go to Jerusalem and break his word to Israel. Remember Dan. 9:27 says he broke his own covenant. Israel never broke it! The apostate Jew was very content with the covenant and the true orthodox Jew never accepted it in the first place. It was the anti-Christ who broke it. He made the agreement for a period of seven years, but saw it was benefitting the Jew far too much, therefore after the covenant had been in existence for 3 ½ years which brought prophetic time up to the middle of the prophetic week, HE BROKE IT! He not only broke his word but the apostate Jew accepted him as Messiah God and this sets off a chain reaction in the heavens as the forth trumpet angel is heard to sound smiting a third part of the sun, moon and stars, the THREE WOES on mankind are pronounced.

APOSTATE JEW ACCEPTS ANTI-CHRIST AS GOD

Why are THREE WOES pronounced on mankind at this very hour? It is because the anti-Christ moves into Jerusalem and into the temple, setting himself up as God and that apostate Jew agrees to go right along with it. Why shouldn’t he, as it has already been stated the apostate Jew feels the coming of the Messiah is nothing more than a period of prosperity anyway and as far as the anti-Christ is concerned up to this hour, he has given his kingdom that prosperity and peace. Nevertheless once that anti-Christ touches the altar and stops the sacrifice in behalf of the orthodox Jew, he fulfills Rev. 11:1-3 as he will also cut off the ministry of these two prophets. Having taken away the daily sacrifice from the altar, Paul’s revelation in 2 Thessalonians says the man of sin sets himself up as God in the temple and is worshiped as God (2 Thess. 2:3-4). But what makes God so angry is the apostate Jew in Israel who he had already plagued for 3 ½ years accepts him as their Messiah God. This brought the FIRST WOE! Speaking of the hour during the middle of the week, Revelation declares everyone in these various areas where his influence is felt (including Israel) whose name is not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world will worship the beast when they behold the spirit of the beast which was and is not, yet is, Rev. 13:8. However, please note, he does not call upon the world to worship him as God until around the middle of week! Because it is not until the middle of the week that he moves into Jerusalem and takes over. Then his whole kingdom, including the apostate political Jew who feels the Messiah is a period of peace and prosperity, will worship him as God.

TREADING JERUSALEM 42 MONTHS

Bringing his international police force into Jerusalem fulfills Rev. 11:2, where under his authority the Gentiles (his police force) tramps the streets of Jerusalem for 42 months. The orthodox Jews are no longer allowed access to the temple area because the anti-Christ has set himself up in the temple declaring himself to be God. Such action immediately sets up a hatred among the orthodox Jews and this still further agitates the anti-Christ, who by this hour according to Rev. 12:13-14, becomes a (wild) beast seeing he has now completely become the incarnated devil himself as Satan who was earlier cast to the earth has completely possessed the man of sin and intends to give Israel a bloodbath. Such satanic hatred against Israel will now usher in a period of 3 ½ years of pure hatred against the Jew as a race of people.

4TH TRUMPET SOUNDS IN MIDDLE OF WEEK

Notice the fourth trumpet angel sounding its judgment did not affect anything on the earth as did the first three trumpets. It is your celestial elements affected by the sound of the fourth angel’s trumpet! Get this, in the middle of the week that carnal political Jew accepted the anti-Christ as their Messiah God there in the temple to completely fulfill John 5:43 having every intention of still going along with the anti-Christ even though he broke his covenant with Israel! Such action greatly angers God and God will use this very diabolical thing to further speak to Israel. Becoming angry over what the political Jew has allowed, the fourth trumpet angel blasts forth in the middle of the week and God smites, not the earth, but a third part of the sun, moon and stars wherein they will not shine for a third part of the day.

MIDDLE EAST AFFECTED

Where will this darkness be primarily expressed on earth? No doubt in the Middle East only! Probably this darkness can not even been seen in the rest of the world only in the Middle East because the anti-Christ is in the Middle East committing this diabolical act and what is worse, those apostate Israelites go along with it! Thus is the Middle East, primarily Israel, this dark celestial shadow will hang. It is God’s way as a sign to the nation, you accepted the devil’s agent as Messiah, all right, if this is what you wanted this is what I am going to give you, only more than you ever dreamed possible! For the last 3 ½ years of Daniel’s 70th week my voice won’t be heard anymore through a prophet, therefore I am going to give you literally hell on earth. Why do I say hell on earth? Because no sooner did that fourth angel sound his trumpet a blast that no natural ear heard, God smites a third part of the sun, moon and stars, now we hear the THREE WOES sounded.

WOE NUMBER ONE

HELL LOOSED

FIFTH TRUMPET

Rev. 9:1-12


Watch closely what happens, the fifth angel sounds his trumpet and with it we see the FIRST WOE released on earth. What do we now see coming up out of hell? In the middle of that final week the fifth angel sounds his trumpet releasing the First Woe upon the inhabitants of the earth, releasing for that first five month period extreme anguish, extreme suffering, extreme sorrow, seeing earth no longer wants to worship God but Satan instead. God himself said to the fifth angel, release that first WOE, Rev. 9:12. Did any natural man hear it when it was released? Absolutely not! But the spirit world heard it. The fifth angel sounded and all hell heard, eager to be turned loose upon the earth, whereby they might torture mankind. It is symbolic of course, because there is no place on earth with a huge hole that you could say here is the entrance leading to the bottomless pit. No, John is strictly seeing a symbolic picture but it shows hell to be opening up and freeing every demon spirit as God calls for them to come forth. As the bottomless pit opens, verse 2 says, a smoke rose from the pit as the smoke of a great furnace and the sun was darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit. Look at that dreadful darkness which rose from this pit in the middle of the week as that man of sin broke the covenant, set himself up in the temple as God and demanded all mankind, including apostate Judaism, to accept and worship him as God. When they do, God immediately releases every devil in hell. God seeing the world including apostate Israel desires to be ruled over by Satan’s man of sin, simply says, you like all that so much, I am going to give you 100 percent of all the devil is. Therefore to accommodate you, I will empty hell just for you and turn every demon loose on the earth. Yes, Israel is included in this because basically the overall picture prophetically concerning the week is primarily concerned with Israel.
 

TORMENT MANKIND

John watched this dramatic sight unfold. The bottomless pit open and these locust like creatures who were demons coming forth. Why are they described as resembling locusts? In the spiritual sense these demons are going to have the same effect upon the flesh and the spirit of mankind in their torturing ability and affects similar to that of a natural locust working and stripping away the leaves and grass of natural vegetation. They simply gnaw away until they have devoured the very thing they are gnawing upon. Verse 3 shows why it is spoken in this manner – And there was given unto them power as a natural scorpion on the earth has power. And note they are commanded not to hurt the grass nor any green thing of the earth, trees, etc. These two prophets’ ministries fulfilling the sounding of the first three trumpet judgments had already accomplished that. These things of torment will only affect man in his physical and spiritual makeup. In verse 4 they are commanded not to hurt vegetation but only to torment those men who did not have the seal of God in their forehead. Recall this sealing came during the first half of the week and this statement proves the 144,000 Israelites were already sealed in and are exempt from this tormenting five month period. Only those unregenerated people who had already aligned themselves with the anti-Christ system, accepting him as God were tormented. Note verse 5 and to them it was given not to kill them, only to torment the unregenerated five months and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion as he strikes a man. In those days man shall seek death and shall not find it, desiring to die, but death flees from them.

FIVE MONTHS TORMENT
These demons are strictly for torment. No, they do not create heart trouble, cancer, etc., these diseases are already here. They literally work on the mentality and spiritual makeup of man, act as a tormenting restless disturbing thing. Listen to the Lord commanding them to hurt mankind during that final 3 ½ year period, their torment is as a torment of a scorpion when it strikes a man. A scorpion sting makes man so miserable, so sick, in such misery, aching, running a high fever. It does not necessarily kill man, yet for hours he is so miserable going through such aches and fever he may wish he was dead. However note, in these five months mankind to be tortured cannot die. Man will actually seek suicide to try and escape the pressure of these tormenting spirits yet God won’t permit him to go through with it.
SUICIDE LEADERS
Amazing how little pressure mankind can actually stand. You would be surprised to know the tens of thousand of people who because of one tormenting pressure or another, can not cope with life and would gladly commit suicide to escape reality. In America alone (in 1975) some 55,000, according to officials, will commit suicide. Suicide rate season runs highest following the suicide of a famous personality. Statistics show for the first three months after Marilyn Monroe committed suicide the rate of suicides rose over 35 per cent above the natural trend. The rate of increase above normal depends upon how well known the celebrity was. What does it mean? Simply that thousands of people desire to commit suicide but do not have the courage, however, let a famous celebrity lead the way and it furnishes courage for thousand of others. Just think, if man can hardly stand his tormenting pressures today when he can die, think of the extra agony that will be added during that special five months after the middle of the 70th week when God has become so disgusted with mankind he won’t permit any man to die. Picture that FIRST WOE being poured out on mankind. During the first five months of the last 3 ½ years of the final week, everything in hell will be loosed and allowed to come upon earth to invade and infiltrate a society who has shown or expressed more than anything, by accepting the anti-Christ as their God that they wanted a satanic rule over them. The purpose of this infiltration is to make life so miserable, so unbearable for unregenerated mankind, spiritually, mentally as well as physically, that he would gladly seek death to escape it but God simply won’t allow unregenerated man to take the short cut out. Here is WOE number one. When did it strike the earth, in the middle of the prophetic week.
TWO FOLD PURPOSE
Actually these released demons have a twofold objective. Not only will they torment mankind five months but as that period of the final portion of the week (last 3 ½ years) draws nearer to its climax, these same devils will become confusing spirits to help throw that entire Western European beast system, headed by the man of sin, into a total state of confusion and unrest, no doubt fulfilling Rev. 17:16-18. While the same time will help prepare the world for Armageddon, including the nations of the Far East oriental people, who by this late hour will all be under their own form of Communism. Never think a devil causing a severe headache can not do something else they sure can, they sure can. Once these tormenting demons are released on earth and serve their five months purpose, watch what the scripture says their final objective is Rev. 9:7, and the shape of the locust were like unto horses prepared unto battle. And on their heads were as it were crowns like gold and their faces were the faces of men, and they had hair as the hair of women. Women’s long hair on a man’s face, This is not said to discredit any young man but are you aware when you see those long haired characters walking the streets today you could well be looking at a physical shadow of what John actually saw in the Spirit. It is pathetic when you can not tell a man from a woman.

SON OF PERDITION ANOINTED TO DESTROY

With man’s face and hair of a woman and teeth as teeth of lions, verse 9 declares them to have breastplates as it were breastplates of iron and the sound of their wings were as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle. Here they take on a military characteristic. Verse 10 says their tails were like scorpions and there were stings in their tails and their power was to hurt men five months. In verse 11 we learn these creatures had a king over them who is the angel of the bottomless pit and that captain and king is the devil whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon but in the Greek is Apollyon. Notice carefully what this name signifies. It brings out the fact of what Satan will be doing in the windup or showdown. This name signifies the devil who is both Lucifer and Satan actually is a “destroyer” or “destroying angel” showing destruction and you associate that word perdition with the son of perdition meaning one ordained to lead to destruction such as was Judas Iscariot who betrayed Christ. Therefore when Satan entered Judas Iscariot, Satan anointed him for the purpose to destroy Jesus, thus causing Judas in scripture to be referred to as the son of perdition. However in this particular setting of the middle of the week when Satan fully enters or anoints the man of sin (as he did Judas) we see that man of sin now take on his role as the son of perdition which means one ordained to lead to destruction. True, mankind had desired this very hour (or rule) nevertheless it was still Satan’s plot, through his man of sin, the son of perdition to now take mankind down the pathway of destruction. God, now disgusted with mankind allows Satan to lead mankind, who he had already rejected, right off into destruction. Satan’s plan is carried out through his agent, now called the son of perdition, because the anti-Christ is not only Satan’s mouthpiece but after the middle of the week has become the very incarnation of this spirit itself. Bear in mind, this son of perdition role does not apply to the anti-Christ until the world reaches the middle of that final prophetic week when he breaks that covenant of Dan. 9:27 and Dan. 12:11 and becomes specially anointed for the kill. It is only then God says I will give the world the most horrible experience mankind has ever endured, I will literally turn hell loose upon the earth, giving them all hell has to offer. Here the devil is allowed to incarnate himself in his agent because in that hour Satan has already set his trap and as far as God is concerned it is already over and finished seeing he won’t lift his hand in behalf of any intervention following the death of his two prophets. The objective is now to take mankind straight to destruction and while leading them down that road to destruction Satan and his demon hosts will have the privilege of slowly tormenting mankind, making life miserable for him because at the end of this last 3 ½ years God intends to destroy all of them during the hour of Armageddon anyway. Thus with the anti-Christ’s broken covenant in the middle of week, we see the first WOE released as hell is turned loose. May I say all three of these woes are sounded and administered directly as the result of what the anti-Christ does in the middle of that week.

WOE 2 & 3 WHEN AND HOW EXPRESSED

Rev. 9: 12 declared, one WOE is past, behold there comes two WOES more hereafter. But the question is in relationship to the final week, where are the other two WOES placed? For years I searched the scriptures trying to see in the light of the scripture relating to this final week, just where, when and how these Woes were to be expressed. Were they to be divided out over the entire final 3 ½ year period of time or just how were they to be expressed. In other words where in the week were they to fall. Was I to understand that one Woe was to be expressed now and then sometime later in the prophetic week another Woe would be released, etc., or did they possibly overlap one another. How the other two woes were expressed still remained to be the question.

6TH TRUMPET CARRIED NO WOE

I took note while reading the sixth trumpet angel it was odd that you did not find the second Woe mentioned anywhere in that trumpet. When God gave the answer I saw these three Woes were all connected into that same time period used to express the fifth trumpet blast there in the middle of the week. Three things were accomplished in the middle of that week and these things constitute the three Woes! These Woes were to be released consecutively, one after the other, falling precisely in the middle of the week. Woe number one is hell being turned loose as the anti-Christ moved into the temple area and those apostate Jews accepted him as God. Two more Woes are to follow. Beloved, as hell is turned loose on earth, your second and third Woes are set in motion.

WOE NUMBER TWO – DEATH OF PROPHETS

What is the second Woe? It is none other than the killing of the two prophets by the anti-Christ which silences the intervention of God for the people in the middle of the week according to Rev. 11:14 and the third Woe is that bloodbath against Israel for 3 ½ years. Therefore, reading the sixth trumpet angel’s judgment, we see no where is the second Woe mentioned. Because remember the effects of the sixth angel will not climax until Armageddon at the end of the 70th week. For the second Woe we pick up Rev. 11:7 where Israel’s two Jewish prophets have just completed their ministry during the first half of the prophetic week, ministering and plaguing the Middle East for a period of 3 ½ years. Did the political apostate Jew repent? They did not. But thank God that 144,000 men received the revelation of who Jesus Christ is. There were some spiritual Jews who received some very important information which will benefit them during the last half of the week, which shall be discussed more thoroughly under the third woe. Now let us establish the second Woe. Time wise, as Rev. 11:7 begins they are at the middle of the week. And when they (the two prophets) shall have finished or shall have completed their testimony (note that is past tense), the beast that ascended up out of the bottomless pit killed them. Here is the Apostle John’s method of describing the spirit of that beast which comes up out of the pit because it is only the spirit of the beast which could come up out of the pit, the body of the beast cannot, only a spirit can do that.

SPIRIT OF BEAST

Therefore it is the spirit of the beast of that old resurrected Roman Empire, which comes up out of hell and embodies or entwines itself around that European beast system of 10 nations as well as the man of sin who is the head of the government of that beast system. This simply becomes Satan’s way of embodying himself or characterizing himself to act out his diabolical purpose primarily against Israel. Thus John says, that beast (spirit) that ascended out of the bottomless pit makes war against them (the two prophets) and shall overcome them and kill them. When, during the first part of the week? Absolutely not!! Because Rev. 11:5 declared during the days of their prophesy (3 ½ years) no one can hurt them seeing if anyone tried the fire (of judgment) proceeded out of their mouth to destroy them. That fire naturally is not a literal fire but is the fire of judgment of the spoken word such as was spoken by Elijah when fire fell and burned up 100 soldiers (2 Kings 1:9-15) in the days of Israel’s apostasy. However, note after their 3 ½ years, once their ministry is completely finished, they can be killed. This shows as long as the anti-Christ is only in the preliminary stage of that week, working out his final plan of take over, God is giving those Jews a revival in Israel during which time nothing can harm these prophets. However, once the revival has accomplished its purpose and God is finished with his two prophets, we see the means and way God has of allowing their ministry to be fulfilled. See, it is time for the fulfillment of Dan. 9:27 and to allow the devil to do all his diabolical work in deceiving the world, presenting himself as God in the middle of the week and soon to lead his followers to destruction. The devil there in the middle of that week, working through his agent the anti-Christ, reaches over, breaks the covenant with the Jew, denying their right to sacrifice, kills the two prophets in the same time period as we see God has now released two of the three WOES announced under the fourth trumpet. Trumpet number five released Woe number one. The anti-Christ, having now become the beast man, reaches out and kills those two prophets, not in some great prison yard but out in the streets of Jerusalem.

SPIRIT OF JERUSALEM

However note, there has such a spirit taken over in Jerusalem by the middle of the week that God does not even refer to this great city by its rightful name Jerusalem, instead gives it two other names which reveal the spiritual setting as it prefigures what the city will be like in that hour. Verse 8 says, and their dead bodies shall lay in the streets of the great city which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt where also our Lord was crucified. What does Sodom and Egypt mean in relation to Jerusalem in the middle of the week. Sodom you remember was a wicked city destroyed long ago and Jesus most certainly was not crucified in Egypt. Therefore these two names (Sodom and Egypt) reveal the spiritual setting showing the moral situation of the people of the city themselves by the middle of the week. As the world reaches the middle of that week, although they have had a great revival in Jerusalem and 144,000 men have been sealed in, nevertheless in a moral sense those Jews who rejected that message but accepted the anti-Christ as God, are possessed with all those idolatrous Sodomite spirits which have been released and running loose. There is in that hour such a spirit of idolatry which affects these blinded political apostate Jews in the fact he worships the anti-Christ as God in their own temple, the political Jew having rejected the two prophets’ message and accepted the anti-Christ as God is now living (as far as God is concerned) in a far worse spiritual and moral condition in their makeup or image before God than the sinful people he destroyed in Sodom. Therefore because of the idolatrous presence of the anti-Christ having moved in makes Jerusalem the filthiest city, both morally and spiritually, as she becomes the cross road of world travel. In that hour in the middle of the week in Jerusalem, you have two conditions simultaneously because as the anti-Christ breaks his covenant he places Jerusalem under his strict Gentile control to fulfill Rev. 11:3. For 42 months Jerusalem will be in bondage and because the two prophets were killed the voice of God will be silenced from any further intervention for the next 3 ½ years. Jerusalem now truly becomes a city of international travel.

WATCHING THE DEAD

Vs. 9,– and they of the people and kindred and tongues and nation shall see (no doubt by satellite television) their dead bodies lie in the street 3 ½ days and shall refuse to allow their dead bodies to be placed in graves for 3 ½ days the world stares upon these dead bodies. Much is heard today concerning communication satellites, that is where pictures and words bounce off a satellite and is seen and heard instantly in all parts of the world. The world will be able to see by television as well as hear by radio these facts without delay. The dead bodies lay in the street and the whole (prophetic) world sends gifts one to the other because they are glad to see these two men dead, because of the plagues which had been placed on them. However, they will only lay there for 3 ½ days, long enough for their bodies to bloat because since the world is making such a big to do over this, God intends to get glory from the very same thing. The world who has been rejoicing over the death of these two men is soon going to have their rejoicing shattered, God is going to speak from heaven and these two men will stand on their feet. No doubt TV cameras will be trained on this sight when it happens. Wonder what the evening newscasters of the news media will say that night concerning their raising from the dead leaving the earth and ascending to heaven? The Bible declares in verse 13 and the same hour (in the middle of the week) there will be a great earthquake. Where? In Jerusalem and Israel. It seems that whenever a resurrection takes place in the land of Israel, the earth just has to rejoice (remember the resurrection of Christ and the great earthquake that followed.) In this earthquake 7000 men are slain and a tenth of the city falls, and the remnant gave glory to God. Although that is true it does mean that they repented and got right with God. Many people today when they see a phenomena occur will acknowledge it had to be God, but it does not make them serve him. What else could they say, it happened there before their very eyes. Now watch closely, verse 14 declares the second Woe is (now) past and behold the Third Woe comes quickly. What is the second Woe? It is when the anti-Christ kills those two prophets in the middle of the week. It is God’s way of saying, you killed my prophets so now you will see my hand no more until 3 ½ years later because now the world will literally have hell on earth. That is what these Three Woes are relating to. All Three Woes relate to the action of the anti-Christ in the middle of that 70th week. No, the earth will certainly not be a joyful place in which to live.

WOE NUMBER THREE – BLOODBATH

We approach the third Woe, and remember it is not some condition developing which happens way out toward the end of the week. It expresses itself right along with Woes number one and two. However, note the third Woe is not mentioned in the same manner the other two are mentioned, nevertheless, it is the last time the word Woe ever appears in Revelation. Our third and final Woe also released in the middle of the week, is seen in Rev. 12. John, looking in the heavens, saw something. There appeared a great wonder (or symbol) in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun and the moon under her feet. What is John looking at? True, he saw the profile of a woman but what he actually sees is the woman’s silhouette as she is so precisely standing in the sun or the glory of the sun is actually what shrouds her, becoming her outer garment. Looking under her feet John saw the moon. John is looking upon the nation of Israel which one day will truly be clothed in the sun when she appears in all her millennium glory. But the moon under her feet shows the nation had passed through 1400 years of the law age which was a foreshadow of better things to come, although it was the gentiles (not Israel) who would receive that better things to come, meaning the grace age.) That same law which testified of the grace age being given to the gentiles spoke also in Hosea, Amos and other prophets of the millennium when all Israel would be saved and shine as a nation in that age. Moreover the fact John saw the woman clothed in the sun did not signify Israel was clothed in the grace age. No, she is only clothed with the glory of Christ when he sits in the millennium, therefore every verse throughout Chapter12 must be interpreted in its proper perspective. Israel, having passed through over 1400 years of the law, prefigured in type by the moon under her feet, that same law tells us that the devil will try to destroy Israel in the middle of the 70th week, but God will save her. He is going to preserve her whereby she will sit in the millennium as a glorified shining nation, fulfilling all of God’s prophecies which he promised her by all his prophets, pertaining to the kingdom age. Christ, her Messiah, will not sit in New York City, he will sit in Jerusalem on Mt. Zion, on the ancient throne of David in order to fulfill Ezek. 21:27 where Zedekiah, the last king of the royal seed line of David, was taken and along with his royal seed was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar. God said he would overturn and overturn and overturn, meaning the kingdom of Israel would simply consistently be done in this manner until he would come whose right it was to rule. God would give him the royal diadem which would no longer be signified by two broken tribes of Israel and Judah but under the kingdom of Christ these two sticks (or diadem) would become one and Christ would rule and reign for a thousand years.

WOMAN WITH CHILD

Staring at the woman, John noticed she was with child, crying in travail and pain to be delivered. How could anyone think this pregnant woman could possibly be the church when the church was always spoken of as a virgin. There is no place in scripture which says the church is with child. The church isn’t even married yet. She won’t be married until Rev. 19, but this woman was heavy with child. In fact she was crying to be delivered. It is none other than the nation Israel which after 1400 years of the law age had already conceived by the mouth of her prophets who dropped off the seed of the word of God, those prophetic promises of God such as out of Zion shall come forth a ruler who will rule my people. He will come forth out of Bethlehem (for that is where he will be born). He will be called a Nazarite, etc. Out of Egypt he will call his Son to name only a few prophecies Israel was pregnant with. It is these many prophecies which is the seed word of God which produces this manchild. In the hour of Christ’s birth Israel was under that last beast power to ever rule the world. Furthermore, this resurrected Roman rule will also be the last beast system seen in the middle of the week who tromp, tromp, tromp over her land. Since 606 B.C. until the period of the Romans, it had been some 600 years that Israel was first out of the land then back in, scourged, overrun, slaughtered, etc, and now Israel was desperately wanting her Messiah. The time had arrived when the woman must give birth to the child. Note, under Roman rule the manchild was born. All prophecies concerning this event had come to pass.

RED DRAGON AND ROMAN EMPIRE

Verse 3 picks up with still another aspect of the story. There appeared another wonder in heaven and behold a great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns upon its heads. It’s tail drew out a third part of the stars from heaven and did cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered for to devour her child as soon as it was born. Brief review: In the heavens stood this pregnant woman, in pain and ready to be delivered of child. In another place stood this great red dragon, all this is none other than a heavenly reflection of the old earthly Roman system down here on earth in which Satan had embodied himself. If the woman is a symbol and a reflection of a nation of people, then so is the red dragon. The dragon is a symbol and a reflection of earthly forces in earthly systems in which Satan has embodied himself for the sole purpose of getting at God, in order to seek to hinder the fulfillment of God’s word. Remember when God’s word is fulfilled it will be fulfilled through people. Likewise, Satan who opposes it, must therefore oppose the word through people. The fact John saw this dragon having seven heads and ten horns certainly wasn’t the picture of Rome in 96 A.D. nor at the time of Christ’s birth but it is the picture of the Roman Empire in its entire complete embodiment and characteristics as it will be in the last days. What John is looking at is none other than a reflection of all this as it is seen in heaven, because all this is definitely the plan of Satan. John is reviewing the overall profile or picture of what will be going on down here on earth, however, only time itself would literally fulfill and characterize it as it would all be displayed on earth.

RULES NATIONS

Verse 5 – and she brought forth a manchild who (later on) was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. Rev. 19 depicts that scene of the second coming of Christ taking place after the close of the great 3 ½ year tribulation period, (falling in the last half of the 70th week), saying, out of his mouth goeth a sharp two-edged sword with which he smites the nations and begins to rule (the smitten nations) with a rod of iron. Thus Rev. 12:5 shows the approach to the first advent of Christ and the nation Israel pregnant with the prophecies of the first advent. In a little town called Bethlehem, some 6 miles from Jerusalem, a baby was born king, who would literally rule the nations. Potentially and basically during the advent of Christ, God gave Israel accessability to their Messiah and King, however, note when Christ came riding into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, 33 A.D., a dramatic event which according to the prophet of this age, completed the 69thweek of Daniel’s prophecy) Christ was not announced as Saviour of the world, instead the prophecy of the event said (Zech. 9:9) behold your King cometh unto you riding on a donkey. No, he wasn’t announced as Saviour of the world and when he was crucified the inscription placed over His head did not read, saviour of the world, but JESUS OF NAZARETH, KING OF THE JEWS! Therefore during His first advent He was given to Israel but Israel crucified their King. This lets me know the devil (the old dragon) used that old ruling body of apostate political Jew during his hour to deny and refuse Christ. Israel was under the Roman rule and authority when the apostate Jews compelled the Romans to crucify Him. It was non other than the devil working through that old political system of Jews, that set up His trial, laid the plot and handed Christ, their King and Messiah, over to the Romans who in turn crucified Him. Naturally the devil thought he had Him. The dragon thought through this act, they had destroyed God’s Word wherein He could not fulfill His promise of kingship. But what saith the scripture? And she brought forth a manchild who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron and her child was caught up unto God and to His throne. Recall, on the third day Christ rose from the dead. God, knowing Israel as a nation would reject Christ on the basis of His kingship, instructed His prophets, Hosea, Isaiah and even David in the Psalms to prophesy concerning how Israel would reject Christ at His first appearing. And because of that God would take the kingship away from Israel and in order to fulfill His role as Saviour to the world would now give His salvation to the Gentiles who for 1900 years has enjoyed salvation through God’s grace. Nevertheless we too have become guilty of playing with the Gospel story as Israel became guilty of playing with the writings of her prophets. Israel with her schools of various interpretation of theological ideas was so preoccupied arguing over these theories, they simply did not know when Christ came the first time. However, had they been paying close attention to Daniel’s prophecy concerning the 70 weeks they should have known their Messiah King was on earth. That’s why God gave them Daniel’s 70 weeks or that period of time that they might know and understand when time for the Messiah had arrived.

CHURCH AGE BETWEEN VERSES 5-6

In Rev. 12:5 what does his being caught up into heaven speak of? It speaks of Christ’s resurrection and 40 days later ascending up on high which now completed His first advent. This statement closed out verse 5 and please note here God has stopped or cut off the nation from his program because between verse 5-6 lays the duration of over 1900 years of seven gentiles church ages. In 70 A.D. Israel was removed from the land and scattered into the four corners of the earth where she would remain for the duration of the grace age, Israel, God’s timepiece, was now cut off or stopped from all other prophecies pertaining to the messiahship and the king for this duration. God simply stopped his time clock concerning her. God, giving to the gentiles the salvation He had offered Israel, fulfills Paul’s revelation in Rom. 11:25 where Paul declared, brethren, I would not have you ignorant that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fulness of the Gentiles be brought in.

MIDDLE OF WEEK

Here we must point out Rev. 12:6 picks back up the story of Israel over 1900 years later. This time the story is picked up in the middle of her 70th week. The reason is because of what was accomplished by the ministry of the two prophets in Israel during the first half of the prophetic week. Bear in mind we live in the generation which saw the political rebirth of Israel as a nation in 1948. No, that was not the spiritual rebirth of the nation at all, only the political rebirth. Because the nation had to first be politically reborn whereby a portion of the scattered people could be brought back into the land before this final 70th week of time could begin.

WOMAN FLEES

Verse 6, and the woman fled into the wilderness where she hath a place prepared by God that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred three score days. At what point of this final week did the woman Israel flee? Watch it because this tears down many carnal ideas concerning this week. Verse 6 picks up the story right in the middle of the week, still allowing 3 ½ years to be fulfilled. Note verse 6 describes one aspect of this woman fleeing into the wilderness. Watch how the scripture now goes back and brings out to build up the picture, because from now on it will be dealing strictly with the final half of that 70th prophetic week. The woman fled for a period of a thousand two hundred three score days.

MICHAEL STANDING UP

Verse 7 carries us back briefly to the beginning of that week when the two prophets appeared on earth. This fulfills Daniel 12:1-2. Daniel, in Babylonian captivity, was greatly disturbed over the future of his people (the Jew) and was asking the angel concerning the outcome of it all. The angel instructed Daniel (Dan. 12:1) that at that time shall Michael stand up, the prince of thy people (Israel) and there shall be a time of trouble such as never was before (Matt. 24:21). The angel continued, nevertheless, even though there will be a time of severe trouble as has never been before, everyone whose name is written in the book will be delivered (into that desert place). Well we know the 144,000 of Rev. 7 will be sealed away during the early ministry of those two prophets in the first half of the week. True, the spiritual core of the nation (not political) is awakened, revelated and made ready for this time of trouble which comes in the latter half of the week. God simply will not revive the political element of the nation because they continued right on in their merrymaking way and accepted the anti-Christ as messiah when he moved into the temple and declared himself to be God. It was because of these political apostate Jews that caused God to pronounce these three Woes on the inhabitants of the earth in the beginning of the last half of the week.

WAR IN HEAVEN

Looking again at this woman, John says in verse 7, there was a war in heaven. John watches a heavenly scene taking place in glory as the final week opens down on earth. Therefore, you may place both Dan. 12 as well as Rev. 11:7 right over the beginning of that 70th week. Now watch something, there was war in heaven. Michael(who stood up for Israel) and his angels fought against the dragon (Satan). Satan we all know is the prince of the power of the air. No, he does not rule God’s abode (heaven) but he does fill the atmosphere around this planet. Paul declared Eph. 6, we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the darkness. Our atmosphere is not only charged with righteous angels, it is also filled with demonic power. Therefore, as the final week begins on earth in the Middle East and things start taking shape in the heavenly atmosphere, remember, once the anti-Christ signs that covenant with Israel that officially begins or opens that 70th week and you only have seven years of time left. At this time Michael the archangel, Dan. 12:1-2 stands up for Israel. Michael’s assignment is to watch over Israel and guide the nation through her darkest hour of history. As Michael stands up I can see him draw his sword as he meets the devil, his adversary and a great conflict begins in the heavens. While on earth during the first part of that week things between the anti-Christ and the world system are shaping up. In the heavens a constant warfare goes on. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon and the dragon fought with his angels and prevailed not. Neither was their place found anymore in heaven. What does that mean? It is simply God’s way of saying Michael, time has come to clean house, go drive the devil out of the atmosphere. On earth there is seven more years left of time. Therefore let us start cleaning house up here. Thus Michael began cleaning house, that is basically driving out every devil which has its mind centered on Israel because once that week begins it is Satan’s plot to choke Israel to death and destroy her whereby she cannot fulfill the scriptures that will bring Christ unto his rule and reign for the millennium. On earth as the first thousand two hundred three score days progressed forward in the prophetic week, a war is going on in heaven. On earth two prophets are prophesying, smiting the earth with plagues and bringing judgment against the political side of the Jew and the nation. The middle of the week has finally arrived and Michael has gained the victory as Satan loses the battle of the atmosphere.

DEVIL CAST OUT

Although Satan lost the battle in heaven God allows him 3 ½ years holiday on earth. Since Satan is the king of all fallen spirits, he is the captain of every creature mentioned in Rev. 9 coming up out of the bottomless pit. The nations of the earth by the middle of the week have aligned themselves with this political genius, the anti-Christ, when time arrives for him to break his covenant with Israel causing God to release his three Woes on earth. Verse 9, (In the middle of the week), the great dragon was cast out, the old serpent called the devil and Satan who deceived the whole world. He was cast out into the earth along with his angels, verse 10, and I heard a loud voice saying in heaven (in the middle of that weeks) now is come salvation and strength and the kingdom of our God and the power of his Christ for the accuser of our brethren is cast down who accuses them before our God day and night.

OVERCOMERS

Beloved, time on earth has come during the middle of the week to see who has the goods. Bear in mind this cannot apply to the bride church, the bride of Christ is gone, therefore this verse cannot apply to the bride of Christ to see if they have the goods. She is at the wedding with the groom. Why is it stated in this manner? The reference refers to earth, it refers to the foolish virgins and those Jewish saints as well who were awakened during the hour of the two prophets. In other words, in the middle of the week when Satan is cast down and all hell is turned loose for the expression of that first Woe and God is no longer on the scene to actually show mercy and intervention through his two prophets seeing they had been killed (Woe No. 2), it has now reached the time that whoever has the goods in this hour must now prove it. You see, those would be the ones who had the salvation for that hour yet, bear in mind, salvation in that hour is not a salvational grace message as you and I know today. Some people think the only individuals going to be saved for the millennium is the bride of Christ and the 144,000. God have mercy on such a foolish way of looking at the scripture. Speaking of that darkest hour, verse 10 says, now is come salvation. No, it does not mean down here on earth during the last 3 ½ years they will have a great revival and people be saved as they were in the grace age before the bride left, they will not. The hour on earth has arrived which is going to prove who is right because we were told in verse 11 and they (who was referred to in verse 10) overcame the devil by two means, first by the blood of the Lamb and second by the word of their testimony. These two terms or expressions indicate that only two separate classes of people on earth can fit in this category in verse 10. They are the Gentile foolish virgins of Matt. 25 who in that dark hour will overcome the devilish beast system (by the blood of the lamb) once the anti-Christ takes over in the middle of the week, declaring himself to be God and sets out to annihilate every God fearing believer left on the face of the earth who missed the rapture of the church. Beloved, there will be a blood bath hit this world that will make the blood bath in the Dark Ages look small. Now what about those who overcame by the word of their testimony? Who are they? These are Jews. Recall when the prophet to this age interpreted the fifth seal and showed the unidentified souls under the altar were not Gentile saints but instead were Jews who were slaughtered between 1939-45 in Hitler’s hour of purge. Naturally not all of the six million Jews slaughtered by Hitler was seen under the altar, of course not, but those slaughtered who had been true to their God were there. Every soul under that altar was given a white robe (after he got there) not on the basis of Jesus Christ the Lamb of God having cleansed them for sin, No, they were blinded unto this salvation until the fullness of the Gentiles come in according to Paul’s revelation in Rom. 11:25, 27 God blinded Israel in order to bring in the Gentiles. But they were there under the altar of God because of the word of their testimony (they were devout Jews and because of that God said their testimony merited them white robes). Those martyred Jews of Europe, killed in Hitler’s purge were heard pleading under God’s altar, how long, O Lord, will thou not avenge our blood? Not all killed in that purge went under God’s altar, by any means, but those who did are heard crying out unto God for revenge. In their hearts, they knew Jehovah should do something about the situation.

REST A LITTLE SEASON

Recall they were given white robes and told to rest just a little season until their brethren should be killed as they were. When it said, yet a little season, that did not mean 100 years later. Yet a little season until your brethren shall be killed in the same manner you were, lets me know from the closing of World War II until the reign of the anti-Christ over the Jew would not be a long period of time, only a short season. Thus the little season in Rev. 6 under the fifth seal connects right here in the middle of that 70th week when they (the Jews) will overcome that anti-Christ by the word of their testimony and by the blood of the Lamb (gentile foolish virgins). And note many will die because it says they loved not their lives unto the death.

THIRD WOE, WHAT IS IT?

Verse 12, Therefore, rejoice ye heavens and ye that dwell in them. Oh, I want to catch this word, WOE, because here is your third woe put into action in the middle of that week. Woe to the inhabitants of the earth. This third Woe is non other than that horrible blood bath brought about beginning the middle of the week. The third Woe is that persecution against Israel set forth immediately by the anti-Christ in the beginning of the last half of that week to literally destroy Israel as a nation of people. Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea, for the devil (who lost the battle in the atmosphere with Michael) has come down unto you having great wrath because he knows he hath but a short time (3 ½ years). Now with that third Woe pronounced in the middle of the week, let us back up temporarily. Whatever the devil now hopes to fulfill in the last 3 ½ years on earth, he must do it through his agent the anti-Christ who is the head of that world beast system described in Rev. 13 as the beast coming up out of the sea having seven heads and ten horns. And get this, a body like a leopard, feet like a bear and a mouth like a lion. This latter description shows this beast has now incorporated the Middle East nations which once had been the territories of the ancient Babylonian Empire, Media-Persia, Grecian as well as Roman Empire which had its revival in the last days and was shown to be the head of this beast. But did you know none of these four empires ever ruled the Far East where dwelt the Oriental people? Rev. 13 shows the picture of the revival of the old resurrected Roman Empire, through which Satan will work, mainly against Israel to close out God’s prophetic picture. The minute that anti-Christ, the devil’s agent on earth, breaks that covenant with Israel, he is turned loose on earth and the two prophets are killed. Seeing the battle in heaven has already been won, Satan is kicked out of heaven into earth in the middle of that week. Imagine Satan and all his imps from hell being turned loose on earth and not a prophet around anywhere to pray for the people. Thus for 3 ½ years the world will have nothing but hell loosed on earth with no intervention from God. With the death of his two prophets, his voice for 3 ½ years is silenced and there will be a time of trouble such as never has been before. Now kicked out of heaven for 3 ½ years Satan now possessing his agent, the anti-Christ, sits in Jerusalem with his huge army to do his every command. The earth will not only be bathed with the blood of the Jewish martyrs as in Hitler’s purge, but the devil, through his agent will also cut off every Gentile foolish virgin. Because in that hour, if you don’t bow to the system you already know the penalty. Therefore I hope you see the three Woes are definitely now something dragged out over the final 3 ½ years, instead they are simply the formula by which God unfolds the unleashing of Satan’s power for 3 ½ years. God having now cleared the atmosphere of the dragon, not what Satan does.

PERSECUTING THE WOMAN

Verse 13, And when the dragon saw he was cast on to the earth he persecuted the woman (Israel) who brought forth the manchild. Beloved, this is why it is stated Woe to the inhabitants of the earth. Why persecute Israel and no other nations? Simply because Satan does not want certain scriptures to be fulfilled. He does not want God to set up his Messiah kingship and the millennium reign to begin. Remember at this hour that reign is only 3 ½ years away, therefore Satan feels Israel must not survive; every Jew must be annihilated. Immediately following the tribulation of those days, Matt. 24:29, Rev. 6:12-15 Jesus declared, the sun shall be darkened and the moon withdraw its light. The powers of the heaven shall be shaken, the stars shall fall as a fig tree cast her untimely figs and every mountain and island shall flee away. Beloved, when that 3 ½ years closes out, completing the 70 weeks of Daniel. God will have counted off the days for the reign of the anti-Christ seeing he only allows Satan to rule in this manner for 42 months and not one day more. Persecuting the woman who (past tense) brought forth the manchild, lets me know it was Israel back in Verse 2, giving birth by prophecy to the messiah, the king of Israel during his first advent. And to the woman was given two wings of a great eagle. When was this done? Right in the middle of the final prophetic week. These two wings of an eagle, what do they represent? All of us know an eagle means a prophet, right? Therefore, these wings of an eagle are symbolic meaning the message of these two prophets which she had already received in the first part of the week. No this part does not refer to the whole nation of Judaism, but only that element of Jews who were awakened by the message of those two prophets. The wings of an eagle were given to the woman in order she might fly into the wilderness for safety. No sooner was the devil cast onto earth then he persecuted the woman who fled.

WOMAN FLEES TO DESERT PLACE

Some feel the place in the wilderness to which she fled is none other than the old ancient city of Petra, located in a boxed in canyon down in Arabia, the old ancient place of the Edomites. Why beloved, every Arab knows where that place is. No, they will not flee into some boxed in canyon, that would be the worse place they could go. The anti-Christ would for sure bottle up that hole and cut them off for good, but God has a place prepared in this earth for that true spiritual Israelite who was revelated during the first half of the week. When that anti-Christ broke his covenant and killed those two prophets, those spiritual Jews already had the revelation where and when to go. When they saw this they knew it was time to leave Israel. The fact the two wings of an eagle was given to the woman shows it was given to the spiritual revelated seed of the woman only and not unto the whole house of Israel in the sense of every Jew. Because, don’t forget you have the largest number of Jews (5 ½ million) living in America alone. It is to that true predestinated seed of God who were given those two wings of an eagle that she might fly into the wilderness into her place. Just as certain as God, but his word, had already prophesied that out of Zion in Jerusalem would come forth one who would rule his people by his same word he had already predetermined and planned a place of refuge and safety for that spiritual revelated Jew. Those two prophets knew where it was to be and told the spiritual element where to go to be nourished for time, times and a half time. That terminology beloved carries you right back to Daniel. For a time, times and a half of time is Daniel’s language describing the dreadful hour to come upon Israel ( 3 ½ years) Dan. 7:25.

EXCESSIVE HATRED

The minute the devil’s power is cast into the earth and all hell is loosed on earth and God is no more on the scene to intervene through his two prophets that anti-Christ is ready to choke out the very existence of Israel but those spiritual Jews already know where to go. By the dozens they leave Israel as the anti-Christ cannot stop them. After they are gone watch what verse 15 says the devil does – And the serpent cast out of his mouth water like a flood. This terminology portrays a flood of wrath released by the man of sin. It fulfills Dan. 9:27 when the beast prince breaks the covenant with Israel and causes the overspreading of abomination that maketh desolate. Abomination in Dan. 9:27 means excessive hatred and desolate means to render void. Such a scene of excessive hatred against Jerusalem and the Jew is characterized by Antiochus Epiphanes, the Assyrian 168 B.C. when he offered a sow on the altar, followed by extreme persecution, and further typed by Titus in 70 A.D. in the siege and destruction of Jerusalem and is culminated when the anti-Christ literally fulfills it hoping to totally exterminate the Jew. Verse 16 says, referring to the fleeing spiritual Jew, and the earth helped the woman. Naturally as John watched all this, seeing it only as a figure, no doubt there was some kind of hole or something in the earth which did open up and swallow the water whereby it could not get to the woman. But how in reality will it be fulfilled? Such a scene lets me know somewhere on this earth there is a nation which will open up its doors to these spiritual Jews.

PROPHETIC WORLD

Someone may ask, won’t the entire world be going under this Roman beast system? I do not mean to shock you with this answer, but the answer is NO! But doesn’t the Bible say the whole world did? Yes, but you must remember it is the whole prophetic world, not the entire literal world because the entire world would take in also all the Far East nations of the world. None of these four world beast powers (Babylon, Media-Persia, Greece or Rome) spoken of in Daniel ordained to rule the world, not one ever ruled the nations of the Far East, the orientals. However, every one of them did rule and fulfill their role in the prophetic world, mainly Europe and the Middle East. Always remember they had absolutely nothing to do with the kings of the East or your oriental people who meet the anti-Christ’s army at Armageddon. Your oriental people was never any part of any one of the four world beast systems nor will they ever be. These oriental people never once enter the picture until Rev. 16 and that is strictly for Armageddon where God is pictured as placing them all (both armies, 200 million men) into his winepress of wrath and getting into the press himself walking up and down on the grapes, squishing juice from the grapes as a result human blood flows to the horse’s bridle in the valley of Jezreel in Armageddon. Back to Rev. 12:16, The earth has opened up its mouth and swallowed the flood. (A nation has opened up and taken in these fleeing spiritual Jews.) And verse 17 says the dragon was angry with the woman, hating her because he knows he has but a short time. If only he could succeed in killing off those spiritual Jews everywhere who believe in Jehovah and who believe in God’s plan he could then be successful in annulling the fulfillment of the Messiah and his kingdom reign. This you recall was Satan’s purpose in the crucifixion when he truly thought he had Christ where he wanted him. But Christ rose from the dead thus once again Satan will make a desperate attempt to get rid of those millennium scriptures through destroying Israel. He is so angry with the woman he goes forth to make war with the remnant of her seed who kept the commandments of God.

PERSECUTING WOMAN’S SEED

That beloved is none other than the Jews in dispersion outside the nation Israel who are still living in Gentile nations for recall, many of these Jews never return to Israel, seeing the largest amount of 5 ½ million remained in America. Yet you have enough to return to Israel to fulfill Rev. 7, where the 144,000 received a revelation and became stimulated with the wine of the Spirit under these two prophets, although it was not until Rev. 14 that you see the same 144,000 Israelites revelated in the first part of the week, going forth now in the second half to do something for God. The minute the covenant is broken in the middle of the week is a signal to that revelated 144,000 to quickly get out of Israel. Those 144,000 Jews, described in Rev. 7 as having received the seal of God which is the Holy Ghost (Eph. 4:30) while those four angels remained holding back war and strife in the Middle East (Rev. 7:1) until these were sealed, are none other than virgins.

VIRGINS AND LAST MESSAGE

(They have not been defiled with woman.) That does not mean these 144,000 men have never been married. It simply means they are Jews who have never been proselyted to any of these Gentile Babylonian daughters (Rev. 17:4-5) missionary programs. They were revelated and sealed strictly by the ministry of two prophets. These 144,000 are servants of God. Rev. 14 reveals them in that hour as standing on Mt. Zion following the Lamb withersoever he goeth. This shows that number has the Lamb’s spirit, the Holy Ghost in their lives and they follow the leadership of the Holy Ghost. It simply means that in that dark hour, their hour of being used has arrived and they have a message for the rest of the millions of Jews in dispersion as they will be going to the Jews in dispersion telling their brethren all about this diabolical system, and to stay away from it. Recall how the Jewish apostles sought out the Jews in the first century offering them the gospel of grace. Likewise the 144,000 go to these millions of Jews still in Gentile dispersion, because soon the anti-Christ will be coming after them. Again we repeat, they do not go with a message of salvation. That anti-Christ is going to do everything he can in every nation over which he has power and authority to carry out his diabolical plot. He will literally seek to destroy that Jew for verse 17 declares, he went to make war with the remnant of her seed who kept the commandments of God, Note: and also those who have the testimony of Jesus Christ. Who in that hour has the testimony of Jesus Christ? None other than those Gentile foolish virgins who were left behind, who simply were not ready when the rapture took place. What do these 144,000 Jews tell the other scattered Jews? Remember their message is not one of salvation such as we saw in the grace age. They won’t be telling the people like Paul and Peter did repent and be baptized, etc. Their urgent message to the Jewish brethren in dispersion will be, do not accept any part of this beast system. They are telling mortal man, whatever you do, do not accept or worship this beast system, you worship God. I don’t care what the anti-Christ tells you to do, threatens you or even kills you, don’t you align yourself with it. The revelation of these Jews in that hour will be to tell mortal man how to be preserved in order to live under the glorious reign of Christ when he returns. Remember when Christ and his bride returns, revealed from heaven riding white horses, Christ destroys every many and woman who identifies themselves with that beast system. These millions of Jews in dispersion will be no exception if they worship this beast (man) who declared himself God there in the middle of the week. Thus these Jews going to their brethren in dispersion carry the last message this world will ever receive. It is not that God is on the scene doing signs, miracles, etc. No during that last 3 ½ years the world will see no more of the display of God, they saw his last operation through his two prophets who were cut off in the middle of the week but through this message delivered by the 144,000 will be God’s way of preserving a few mortal men whereby when Jesus does sit in his kingdom there will be a living fleshly remnant of each nation who never bowed their knee to the anti-Christ system. These, God will preserve as a seed or for the new age to rule and reign over while the rest is cut down. For does not Rev. 19 plainly declare when Christ comes, out of his mouth goes a sharp two-edged sword with which he should smite the nations. Smiting the nations signifies that Christ at the close of the 3 ½ year tribulation period pours out his vials of wrath (Rev. 16) on the beast and on his kingdom by bringing together the kings of the Far East against the beast of Western Europe and her allied territories (Middle East) along with every apostate thing into Armageddon. Armageddon as shown in Rev. 19 is simply God’s way of allowing mankind, as far as his military might has advanced, with it destroys one another.

PART 3 EVENTS OF FINAL 3 ½ YEARS

THE 6TH TRUMPET RELEASES FOUR ANGELS

Examine the sixth trumpet even though it does not carry a Woe, just to see where it sounds and what happens once it does. Its sounding loose the four angels bound in the river Euphrates. For what purpose? To go forth to prepare any army for battle, a number of which excelled 200 million men. Here was Armageddon in preparation. Note the sixth angel sounded immediately following the fifth angel, not some 3 ½ years later when the effects of this sixth sounding was felt. Beloved, these angels were to prepare for Armageddon and that cannot be done overnight. In reality it will take a better part of the remainder of the week (3 ½ years) to prepare such an enormous army for battle where the effects of the sixth trumpet can be felt by the end of the week. You don’t jump up overnight, find a cause for war and prepare 200 million men for battle. No sooner was the first Woe sounded (under the fourth trumpet) than the fifth trumpet immediately sounded, releasing hell on earth. Then immediately followed by the sixth angel sounding his trumpet and note, what took place, it released those spiritual forces to begin the preparation for that Middle East war, setting the stage of war between two communistic camps.

GEOGRAPHICAL BARRIER

The River Euphrates where these creatures were pictured as bound (or not being allowed to operate) has always served as a geographical barrier between your Far East nations (oriental race) and your Middle East nations. Recall also around this Euphrates area is where mankind’s original history as well as the prophetic picture and the plan of salvation all got its start. The fact that these four angels are pictured bound in the Euphrates River does not imply they have been bound and struggling for centuries trying to free themselves. Certainly Not! This is a symbolic picture, but remember according to Rev. 7:1-2 something had to first happen in Israel before these angels could be released to prepare the war of Armageddon. Perhaps, Rev. 7:1 can throw some light on this setting under the sixth trumpet as it also pictures practically the same setting only in a little different manner. In Rev. 7:1-2 we saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth (winds represent war and strife) on the earth or the sea or any tree until something happened. That was until the sealing of the 144,000 with the seal of God in their forehead could first take place, which remember took place in the first half of the prophetic week. Next came an angel bearing that seal the 144,000 are to be sealed with, which is none other than the Holy Ghost, Eph. 4:30. The sealing took place in the first part of the week, before the four angels were released under the sixth trumpet in the middle of the week although the effects of that trumpet is not fully realized unto the end of the week.

FAMOUS BATTLEGROUND

Time has arrived for the preparation of that final war in the Middle East called Armageddon. Why the Middle East? The valley of Armageddon or plains of Jezreel, Josh. 17:16, Israel’s largest and most fertile valley, was in the B.C. period the most famous battleground in the world. Laying in a triangle shape approximately 15 mi. x 15 mi. x 20 mi. the valley of Jezreel and the plain of Eschelon at the foot of Mt. Megiddo was the scene of wars with the Egyptians, Hitties, Israel, Philistines, Assyrians, Syria, Persia, Greeks, Roman Crusaders, Turks, Yes, and even the British under Gen. Allenby (1918) have marched and fought on these plains. The ancient town of Megiddo guarding the pass which formed the easier caravan route between the plain of Sharon and the Valley of Jezreel was first a royal Canaanite city. No less than 20 cities have been built on this 13 acre hilly site. In Solomon’s day the city was a fortress. The importance of the city is whoever controls it, controls the valley. This area has witnessed many international conflicts of nations. The battle of Armageddon will be the final land war ever to be fought in this strategic passage. How strange mankind would at the end of civilization return to his original area where great international struggles of nations in the past were fought. When civilization started moving from east to west, especially after the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D., we also see wars involving nations moving westward also. For centuries mankind’s wars were fought on the continent of Europe because as mankind moved slowly westward, so did his wars. World War I and World War II on the 20th Century were fought primarily on European soil although World War II extended into the Far East with Japan where the U.S.A. remained in a struggle in the Far East through Vietnam and Korea for better than 30 years. Wars continually in the Far East now show mankind has swung westward as far as he could go and is slowly returning the area of the Middle East where his origin was and his B.C. wars were all fought. The youngest of all the western nations of the world has recently closed a shameful, embarrassing chapter of her American history, the defeat of the Vietnam War, a 30 year war is finally over in the Far East. A war which divided and bankrupted the greatest, youngest western nation on earth. Europe who colonized the Far East was run out years ago. The U.S. who had no colonization interest to protect in the Far East as did France, Belgium, etc., was nevertheless, the last of all the western nations to leave. Since the 50’s America who has drained herself in two Far East wars trying unsuccessfully to block the advancement of Communism is also being pushed completely out of the Far East picture, giving way to the very thing she fought, while Communism like a creeping cancer slowly soaks up the Far East. The next major war involving nations will be none other than in the Middle East.

MANKIND’S CIRCLE

Thus when the sixth trumpet sounded in the beginning of that final 3 ½ years, four angels are immediately released from the Euphrates River to go forth and prepare nations for that final land war. Where? Right back in the Middle East, the area of man’s beginning. Mankind, made his circle continually pushing westward until finally he circles back to the Middle East for his final struggle of existence. These spirits released in the last half of that week began to set in motion political conditions between the western European world and that of the eastern oriental world (namely the Far East nations who will soon all be under Communism) by preparing strife and conflict between these two different elements of Godless governments. On one hand will be the Godless European beast system consisting of western nations who by the end of the week has ditched Catholicism for some form of Communistic theology all of their own. On the other hand, from the Far East comes the kings of the East, another communistic camp. All that part of the oriental world is pictured in Rev. 16 preparing themselves for the dreaded conflict of the Middle East where 200 million men are slaughtered in the Valley of Jezreel in the Battle of Armageddon. The European western world of the beast system for the first 3 ½ years of the week rode triumphantly while in the Far East your oriental race also had been rising rapidly higher and higher, embracing their own special brand of communism and seeking to make a name for themselves. The day is coming when they definitely make a name for themselves. For centuries they desired to and under Genghis Khan the oriental race tried desperately to make a great name, planting their influence upon the western world and almost succeeded. Had it not been for that German Emperor, Charlemagne, who turned the tide, driving him out of Europe, you would have had a far greater mixture of the oriental blood and influence mixed into your western world than what you have today. Nevertheless, since Charlemagne turned the tide and ran Genghis Khan and his oriental armies out of Europe, the yellow race has never been able to stamp their influence on the western world at all. Yet for centuries in the Far East that yellow race has constantly fought among themselves for preeminence. Scriptures refers to the yellow race as the kings of the East who come against that western arm under the man of sin at Armageddon. The far eastern world battling against the western European world for supremacy. Loosing the four angels bound in the Euphrates River is God’s way in the last half of that week of eliminating that ancient geographical barrier dividing the Far East from the Middle East.

TWO GODLESS CAMPS

John described that scene of slaughter at Armageddon from God’s viewpoint in this manner (Rev. 14:14-20) there sat one in the clouds likened unto the Son of God with a sharp sickle in his hand. And an angel was heard flying though the heavens saying, thrust in thy sharp sickle and reap the clusters of the earth (in the closing of the 70th week) for the harvest of the earth has come, and he thrust in his sharp sickle and reaped the clusters of the earth and cast them into the winepress of the wrath of God. Beloved the winepress of God is none other than Armageddon. It is God’s way and he knows how to bring them all to Armageddon, doesn’t he. Two forms or camps of communism, each desiring to conquer the other. Therefore beloved, when that European beast consisting of those ten Western European nations rises up and destroys the woman (Catholicism) which rode her back, Rev. 17:1-18, these nations themselves, disgusted with Catholicism in Europe somewhere in the final half of that week accept their own form or brand of socialism or communism. Recently a U.S. Senator declared if things continued as they are going, Europe would be under communism in less than ten years. Even today we are seeing communism pressuring the many governments of Europe for social change. Portugal recently swung to the Vatican, the government is better than 33 percent communistic. Recently a poll was taken in England which showed only 26-28 percent of their population even believed in God. Many nations (over a third of the world) have already fallen to the communistic ideology of life. Remember both sides came to Armageddon with a motive but God came with an objective and that objective requires 200 million men to be slaughtered and the blood to run to the bridle of the horses.

FOUR BILLION

Where will so many men come from? The world in April, 1975 topped the four billion population mark. Presently there are over 800 million people in China alone and close to 700 million in India. That is a good start. Before everything closes out in that entire Far East, they will all be under the communistic hammer and sickle. The Far East will be under one great communistic camp. Therefore may I say, while both the anti-Christ and God (through his fifth trumpet) is giving mankind hell on earth in the second half of the week, once that sixth trumpet is sounded those spiritual forces are released going into the earth stirring up strife and preparing the two communistic camps for Armageddon. When that final 3 ½ years of Daniel’s 70th prophetic week reaches its climax, it will be time for the anti-Christ’s road to have reached an end and God will bring, from the effects of that sixth trumpet angel blast 200 million men to Armageddon for slaughter. In actuality the sixth trumpet shows the effects of the Euphrates River the same as does the sixth vial. No sooner does the anti-Christ break his own covenant then immediately the sixth trumpet angel sounded and those four angels were loosed whereby throughout the last portion of the week they might prepare the great host of armies who are eventually brought to Armageddon and fought in the very end of the week. As Armageddon is in progress at the close of the week, God speaks to the fowls of the air and the beasts of the field saying, come and east flesh of dead captains of the mighty, the rich, the bond, the free, etc. Eat the flesh till you be full and drink blood until you are drunk. Joel’s prophecy shows this also Armageddon is God’s cleaning up process. The Bible declares the rest who are not slain through this process were slain by the sword which proceeded out of his mouth at his coming. That is unleashed wrath. Though death he destroys them.

7TH TRUMPET

Naturally John saw also the seventh angel blow his trumpet yet the effects of it wasn’t to be expressed until the end of the forty-two months. Reading carefully the sixth seal and the seventh trumpet, along with the seventh vial in Rev. 16, you will note all three speak of the coming of the Lord. Yet we are fully aware there is not three separate phases of Christ’s second coming. Christ comes under the sixth seal because when that seal is expressed in its earthly and celestial fulfillment the sun became as black as sackcloth of hair, not like it occurred under the fourth trumpet when only a third part of the sun, moon and stars were all smitten. However, according to the sixth seal and Matt. 24:29-30 when that sixth seal becomes applicable for fulfillment to be expressed in the celestial elements and in the earth, the sun becomes black as sackcloth of hair and the moon becomes as blood and the stars from the heaven fall to earth and the heavens shall literally depart as a scroll. At that time shall appear the sign of the coming of the son of man in great glory. What does the heavens departing as a scroll, as well as everything else blacking out portray? Remember the old theater houses before the days of motion pictures, as the play on stage was ready to begin, all the lights in the auditorium dimmed and everyone’s attention was focused on the stage where the play was ready to begin. Reading again the sixth seal and comparing it with the seventh trumpet, beginning with Rev. 11:18 declares the nations were angry and thy wrath is come and the time of the death that they should be judged. Observe, it is not here he is coming because his coming is seen over in Matt 24:29 immediately following the tribulation of those days (42 months). There the sun is darkened, the moon withdraws it light and the power of the heavens mightly shaken. Then shall appear the sign of the son of man coming in power and great glory. Paul declares in 2 Thess. 1:7-10 at his coming, Christ is revealed from heaven in flaming fire in the hour of his great appearing with the celestial elements blacking out, watch what happens. Like the playhouse. God first turns off the great celestial lights and they stay off long enough for this earth to make one complete revolution and then he appears in flaming fire right from the stage of glory. The sixth seal declares, the mountain shall shake and the islands shall flee away. Now if you will read the seventh vial of wrath (Rev. 16) you will see the rich men, etc., run to the mountains and rocks and cry out, Hide us from his wrath. The sixth seal, the seventh trumpet and the seventh vial all unlock the great revelation and the closing out of the great judgments and wrath.

 

The Things Of Christ

INTRODUCTION

WHAT WERE THE THINGS OF CHRIST WHICH WERE FIRST IN GOD AND LATER PLACED BY THE SPIRIT INTO CHRIST’S MYSTICAL BODY ENABLING THEM TO DO GREATER WORKS THAN CHRIST IN HIS EARTHLY MINISTRY?

Contents

PART 1 – NEW HOLY GHOST OFFICE

We are approaching a subject which we entitle “THE THINGS OF CHRIST.” Our scripture setting is found in John 16 and deals exclusively with Christ’s final teaching session only hours before His crucifixion. Perhaps no other teaching session in all His ministry will prove as enlightening and invaluable to the disciples as this final one (John, chapter 14-16) which deals strictly with the office work of the Holy Ghost in that of the believer, a lesson which transpired sometime after the Last Supper and before the arrest in Gethsemane.

Note carefully, the Truth revealed especially in John 16:12-15 concerning the Holy Ghost or Comforter who is to be sent in Jesus’ name (John 14:26), and how this Spirit referred to as the Spirit of Truth or Father is shortly to take the THINGS OF CHRIST and show them unto the disciples. Matthew, you recall, was the first writer to openly declare the Holy Ghost to be Father of Christ! (Matthew 1:18-25) John 16:12, Jesus in His final teaching session, after Judas had left the fellowship, (John 13:30) informed His disciples He yet had many things to say unto them, however, they couldn’t possibly bear them now. Howbeit (however) when He the Spirit of Truth is come, He will guide you into all the Truth.

TWO THINGS HOLY GHOST DOES

Notice especially two statements found in Part B of John 16:13 declaring what the Holy Ghost will do once He is in His office. (1) He will not speak of Himself but shall speak of only that which He shall hear, (2) And He shall show you things to come! Jesus, referring to the Holy Ghost Father God – says when He is come into His new office work He will never speak of Himself. Why, Beloved, will He never speak of Himself? Once the Spirit of God enters His new office work (the 3rd) He will never speak in any respect to draw attention away from the man Christ, as though giving you the impression there is still yet another Spirit or Person to be glorified, but instead will seek to devote or draw all your attention to the fleshly man Christ, His only begotten Son born of a virgin womb from the seed of God, (Galations 4:4). The Holy Ghost’s attention is forever centered around this man Christ, the only Person of God of whom the gospel story itself is centered around, (I Corinthians 15:1-4).

CHRIST IN SPIRIT FORM

Therefore beloved, the only way possible for Christ to ever be seen in the life of believers must come through that of the Spirit (of Christ) – else how could Colossians 1:27 be correct in declaring, Christ in you, your hope of glory. Seeing the impossibility of an embodied, fleshly man called Christ dwelling in you, the only other alternative for Christ to personally dwell in you would be through His Holy Spirit!

The Bible declares each believer, baptized by the Holy Ghost into this one mystical body of Christ on earth has within them the Father, Son and Holy Ghost through this One Eternal Spirit. If I were trinitarian minded and said I believe what the Bible taught, when various verses indicate the Father is in us, the Son Christ is in us and the Holy Ghost is in us as believers, I would have to interpret that to be three different and distinct persons in the believer.

FATHER, SON & HOLY GHOST IN ONE SPIRIT

However, I am convinced God is not three separate and distinct persons but instead is only one inseparable Spirit who fulfills three office works of God, and once that inseparable Holy Spirit comes into our life John 16:13-15 declares He will: (1) show you things to come, (2) glorify Jesus the Christ only. Beloved, it is only through this Holy Spirit taking the THINGS OF CHRIST and placing them in the believers life are we allowed to see Jesus Christ living in the midst of His people for whom He came to save and redeem, (Matthew 1:21).

SHOWING GODLY CHARACTERISTICS

No Sir, not until the departure of Judas Iscariot into the night to betray Christ does Christ, now having only His true devoted disciples alone, present to them His final teaching session on the Holy Ghost as we hear Him declare that the express purpose of the Holy Spirit working in a believer’s life would be for none other purpose than to draw our fullest attention to the very Godly character of Christ Himself. The Spirit which was in Christ (II Corinthians 5:19) will draw our attention to the godly characteristics, traits and attributes of Christ, those godly attributes which portrayed within Him the nature of Deity or ability to be godlike and secondly, the Spirit when He is come into that new office work will show to the revelated believer the power of Christ, that power which demonstrated the works of Christ.

PURE & GODLY LIFE MAKES HIM DIFFERENT

John 16:14 – (14) “He shall glorify Me for He shall receive of Mine and show it unto you. (15) All things that the Father hath are Mine therefore He will take the things of Mine (THINGS OF CHRIST) and show it unto you.” The Holy Spirit, whom we know to be none other than the Spirit which dwelt in Christ (Romans 8:9-11) as well as the Father, when that one Spirit is come into His new office work He shall take those certain things which were invested in the man Christ and present them unto the Church, His mystical body. The Spirit will take those things which made Christ stand out or be set apart from all other mankind things which made Him to be the God man or godly man He is, and present these things to the revealed Church in order that they one day might become the same as He. Remember THE THINGS OF CHRIST which made Him different or stand out were not found in some particular outward mode of dress or appearance. No, because John 4:9 declares the woman of Samaria recognized Jesus as a Jew apparently from His appearance and dress. By no means did His outward appearance make Him different from others. Dress wise He looked as any other man of that hour. Hence, Christ was no oddball or hippie in His society as some think, yet what made Him different from others was in the pure life He lived and godly nature while here. Jesus who was declared both Lord and Christ was the Son of God, born of woman into a pure sinless body of flesh in which the Eternal Spirit chose to dwell and manifest His Eternal attributes through in order to draw mankind’s attention unto the only route mankind could return to God, I Corinthians 5:19.

Hence, it is important to recognize, first of all, that the Spirit of Truth called God the Father was in this godly fleshly man on earth! Once the Sonship role was finished, Jesus declares that the Spirit of Truth (another Comforter) would come into that third office work of God and now take those things which had made Christ different and make them known unto the revelated believers. I repeat, these things to be shown of THE THINGS OF CHRIST unto the believer was not found on the outside of the man Christ but instead was inside! For without these THINGS OF CHRIST being in the mystical body of Christ which the Spirit is going to take and show unto every revelated believer, you simply wouldn’t have the Spirit of Christ in the believer at all but would be some other Spirit instead. Moreover in order for that same identical Christ to live in the mystical body of Christ through the Eternal Spirit, would require those same attributes or characteristics which were first placed in Christ to now be placed in the revelated church.

ATTRIBUTES OF FATHER IN CHRIST

Verse 15 declares, “All these things that the Father hath are Mine and the Spirit will show them (all these things) unto you.” Let us examine this statement. (1) Whatever the Eternal Spirit, God the Father is in all His Eternal attributes characteristics or makeup has now (every bit) been placed in the Son, Jesus the Christ, born of woman. Therefore, whatever Christ is in His makeup, attributes, characteristics or traits which He received from the Father will all be taken by the Holy Ghost (the one Eternal Father, Matthew 23:9, in this new office work and emptied into His mystical body left here upon earth to carry out His divine will and purpose. Moreover beloved, when that happened you can’t help but see God in the midst of His true revelated church, those people whom God the Spirit has placed the THINGS OF CHRIST within in order they might be reconciled back to Himself, making them also the sons of God, even as God was in Christ on earth. The objective of God, in order for you to become a son of God and have a hope of glory through the Eternal Holy Spirit, is that Christ (your only hope of glory) in Spirit form might dwell in you. A work accomplished only through the office work of the Holy Ghost as He convicts you of your sins and makes a true revelated believer out of you. Beloved, you can by no means split up the THINGS OF CHRIST into certain sections or parts declaring that part which you have chosen in Christ. The THINGS OF CHRIST which you may have chosen can well be a part of Christ, although by no means is it Christ in the fullness of God As He has purposed to be in us, the Church!

PART 2

FULLNESS OF GODHEAD – WHAT DO YOU MEAN?

Turn to Colossians 2:9, which declares all the fullness of the Godhead dwelt bodily in Christ. What did Paul mean by “all the fullness of the Godhead dwells in Christ?” Simply this, everything God the Father is, was placed in the man Christ here upon earth. No, not in His bulk Spirit form which fills all space, but in every attribute or characteristic that God the Father is, that attribute in its fullness was placed in Christ, the Son. Hence, Christ could honestly declare, all things (attributes or characteristics) the Father hath are mine. True, else how beloved could Christ remark to Philip in that final teaching session, he that hath seen Me hath seen the Father, John 14:16:11.

How could this be? Remember first off, the Father is not a person having hands, feet, etc., as Christ, who was a man, has. Furthermore the man Christ was not Eternal, seeing He had a beginning but the Father Spirit, which is this one Eternal life giving Spirit is Eternal whose shape no one has ever seen, who fills all space and heaven is declared to be His throne while earth is His footstool.

NOT JESUS ONLY

Therefore in Christ what do we see, some second person? GOD FORBID! We see in Christ everything that the Eternal Father ever was, in all His Eternal attributes. An attribute is defined as a characteristic of a person or thing. God, who is made up of many attributes, invested them all in this earthly sonship office of God which originated here on earth through Jesus the Christ who was born of woman. Attributes might be a difficult word for some to grasp, but remember an attribute is a characteristic of a person or thing. Just as you were nothing but attributes once, laying there in the loins of your father before being transferred from your father’s loins unto the womb of your mother, where approximately nine months later you were introduced unto your earthly father as a person! No, the Eternal Spirit in His bulk Spirit form was not in Christ, that would make Him Jesus Only. Instead the Father God being in Christ was there in every Eternal attribute or characteristic which Father God is, else how could Paul declare, it pleased the Father (Spirit) that in Him (Christ) should all the fullness of the Godhead dwell bodily? (Colossians 1:19, 2:9) For the fullness of the Godhead to be bodily in Christ did not require the heavens to drain nor empty themselves of the Spirit and presence of God, thus requiring His entire bulk Spirit form to be placed into a mere body of flesh, called the Christ! Only those Eternal attributes or characteristics which God is, was there in that man.

GOD NEVER SEEN

The Eternal Spirit called God, in all His entirety of attributes or characteristics had never been seen by man at any time, John 1:18. In other words, no man had ever seen God’s eternal abode. Israel had often been privileged to see various manifestations of Him, Hebrews 1:1. They had witnessed the mountain vehemtly shaking at His presence; they knew He was there but could not see Him. They even saw the Red Sea split and felt the sensation of the wind blowing all night. Truly Israel had seen all these manifestations of God although again I repeat, they were never privileged to see His Eternal being. Moses saw his hinder parts, and Abraham had lunch with Him as he entertained three angels, one of the three was the Lord in an visible manifestation to appear unto Abraham. Yet no one had ever seen God in His Eternal being of attributes or makeup. Israel could not possibly perceive what this omnipotent (all powerful), omniscient (all knowing), omnipresent (present everywhere), Spirit called God was actually like! No beloved, not until the fullness of the Godhead (everything God ever was) appeared bodily one day in this one man called the Lord Jesus Christ.

ATTRIBUTES OF GOD IN CHRIST

This life-giving, invisible Spirit called God the Father in every attribute that He is was now in Christ on earth. Every attribute the Father is in LOVE, POWER, TRUTH and everything else you could think God to be is all there in Christ! That is why Christ could declare to Phillip after 3½ years, have you been so long time with Me Phillip and still don’t know who the Father is? He that hath (truly) seen me (through revelation of the Holy Spirit), to know I am truly the Lord, hath seen past this vail of blood, and flesh, seen past this earthly role of sonship into the Eternal realm of those godly, divine life-giving attributes, within my own life and makeup, if you have seen past all that Phillip you have seen the eternal Father. No, not until Jesus who was made both Lord and Christ was born from that pure, perfect seed of God as well as the pure created egg of the virgin womb which God borrowed to form that perfect, sinless little body of flesh which would hold all these Eternal attributes that God is, would grow into manhood and walk this earth. No, not until this event had Israel ever seen God. If you can’t see Him through the revelation of the Spirit in Jesus Christ, you will never see Him. Eternal life of God with naked eyes, their hands were also privileged to handle Him, I John 1:1-2. This life-giving Holy Spirit. God the Father Himself, who is made up of all these divine attributes and characteristics, chose one day to walk among men in order that mankind could see God the Father living and ministering through a perfect sinless obedient vessel of clay and it was this vessel of clay, heard to speak to mortal men saying, he that hath seen me hath seen the Father! Why then say show us the Father and it will satisfy us, John 14:9? And then declare in John 16:15 shortly before the cross that all things the Father hath are mine and get this, all things will the Spirit take and give unto you! Therefore, all that mankind could every hope or conceive in HIS THOUGHTS CONCERNING God the Father’s love, power, etc., every characteristic and attribute of God the Father was all in Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Everything concerning the expression of God in power to meet every need of mankind; every attribute of God or characteristic of God was found in that one fleshly, perfect, sinless man, Jesus who was both Lord (God) and Christ (anointed one).

CHARACTER GOD DESIRES IN CHRIST

For what purpose, that God now as a man, could illustrate to fallen mankind exactly what kind of character or nature that He, as God desires sinful fallen mankind to be. Christ the perfect man, was the very fullness of the Godhead bodily, that is, in every attribute dwelling in Him, to demonstrate to mankind, exactly how God had always wanted mankind to live, since the first Adam was placed on earth. That exampleship God desired had been lived and portrayed in a perfect man called Jesus, the anointed one (Christ), who is standing here declaring unto His chosen disciples, all that the Father hath are mine and these things that are mine will soon be taken by the (Holy) Spirit in His new office work and shown or distributed unto you!

FURTHER ILLUSTRATION

It could be illustrated further in this manner, the Eternal Spirit says to fallen mankind, LOOK, you have never seen what I expected from mankind. How could you seeing the first Adam (your daddy) fell and by taking on a sinful nature of unbelief and death was only able to father into this planet a fallen human race of disobedient humanity of flesh filled with death!! However, you watch this man I sent, the second Adam who was born of a pure seed of God, who is My Son and is also a new order or new breed of mankind, not like others that are filled with death, instead he is full of ZOE (God’s Eternal Life)! Take a good look at this man’s life, see His loyalty and obedience to do the perfect will of the Father. Look at His exampleship in life and you will see what order of man I desire you to be like. Therefore, unto the revelated mystical body of Christ, the Church, I will give you all these things that made Him what He was as a perfect, obedient Son, full of Eternal Life. I will empty Him and present all the THINGS OF CHRIST unto you, that you in turn one day shall be like Him at the end of the age.

CHRIST OUR OLDER BROTHER

Remember in order to be Christ-like doesn’t mean we run a race with Him, oh no, that kind of Spirit would destroy the very objective we were seeking. Isn’t it strange how some people simply can’t bear for anyone to get ahead of them. Nevertheless, I am glad in the family of God we do have an older brother, the second Adam, who was our example, yet strange to say in natural families one thing that irked the other children was to have an older brother. For some reason they seem jealous of him. In God’s family, as God the Spirit presented Himself in the office of His sonship, the man Christ Jesus was born of the seed of the Holy Ghost, His Father, must in a family relationship be recognized as your older brother, our example. Yet, as very God He is the manifestation of your Saviour and Redeemer in order to reconcile you back to that great Eternal Holy Spirit called Father. The Holy Spirit, who is not some third person but is very God Himself in His future work, is using that supreme sacrifice of the Lamb to regenerate mankind or shall we say, renew, quicken or restore mankind back unto Himself.

CHRIST, HIGH PRIEST

Hence, once Christ became the resurrected Christ, He commissioned His disciples with the great commission and ascended into glory to accept His new office work of High Priest before the mercy seat (Hebrews 9:8-15), while the Holy Ghost would take the things that were in this man Christ, things that made Him what He was, and manifest these great characteristics or attributes unto the Church which is seeking to return to God.

GREATER IN WHAT CAPACITY?

Approaching that statement in John 16:15, the things of Mine (Christ), did Christ mean to imply when He said, “these things (or signs) shall follow them that believe”, Mark 16:17-18, that future Christians would be in some way different than He Himself had been – CERTAINLY NOT! How could you be Christlike or have the Spirit of Christ within you and be different? Moreover when Christ in Mark 16 stated, “These signs shall follow them that believe”, He was linking that statement up with another previous statement He made when He said, “These things (deeds) that I do, ye shall do also and greater works than these, shall you do.” (John 14:12) How could they do greater works than Christ? Greater works than these in the respect that Christ was speaking in reference to His many membered mystical body on earth, which even at that hour the statement was made, already potentially stood before Him a plurality of disciples. Later as the THINGS OF CHRIST was taken by the Spirit and distributed into the mystical body of Christ as He saw fit or as it pleased Him, watch those works of that first generation after Pentecost, 40 years or so, as those disciples allowed the Holy Ghost to work through them in whatever capacity the Spirit so chose as He had distributed all these THINGS OF CHRIST within the body that all could see Christ in the mystical body continuing on with His work! Therefore, as a many membered body of Christ now scattered over a larger area, the body would do far more deeds than Christ did in the sense they would now have His attributes (gifts) within them as they could cover a far wider area than the one man Christ could possibly cover! GREATER IN THAT SENSE ONLY!

PART 3 – WHAT ARE THE THINGS OF CHRIST?

With these thoughts in mind concerning THE THINGS OF CHRIST, how the Spirit is to place these things in the body of Christ, let us find out what these THINGS OF CHRIST are, because whatever these THINGS OF CHRIST are will produce a character of Christ-likeness in the revealed Church.

SIGNS FOLLOWED COMMISSION

The THINGS OF CHRIST to be distributed to the Church are better known as the nine gifts of the Spirit recorded in I Corinthians 12:1-31, a period of time which is well covered within the Book of Acts, a book which we must accept to be the history that covered roughly the first 45 years of the early church, and that entire book is a confirmation of what Mark declared in Mark 16:16-18 concerning signs following believers. Mark declares through verse 20 that after the day of Pentecost the disciples went everywhere preaching, not signs but the gospel of Christ which was the death, burial and resurrection of Christ thus baptizing converts in the name of Jesus Christ in order to identify them with the death, burial and resurrection of the one who died, was buried and rose again! No, they didn’t preach signs, they preached Christ who was the Truth; they preached the Great Commission, and they preached the Great Commission in exactness of revelation and understanding as Jesus had declared after His resurrection. Because of their loyalty to the Commission, to cherish it so obediently in their hearts, God worked with the revealed Church in signs and gifts of the Holy Ghost. (Hebrews 2:4)

CARNAL ATMOSPHERE IN HUMAN THINKING

I Corinthians 11:1-31 was a portion of a letter written by Paul in answer to certain timely questions which were disturbing an established church at Corinth, Greece, a church Paul established on his second missionary journey. Since the day of Pentecost, the Holy Ghost had been distributing the THINGS OF CHRIST unto the body of believers. Thus, the gifts of the Spirit to the Church was not only in the church at Corinth, but were in all the established churches of the First Age in this truth. Paul, in his letter, is by no means writing to undo any of the virtues or THINGS OF CHRIST as some without the Spirit have taught. Instead Paul’s interest was only to correct the error, the mis-practice or the ignorance upon the part of the church, ignorance which was keeping them from fully or truthfully understanding the true objective and usage of these THINGS OF CHRIST. However, probably within the little young church a spirit of spiritual competition had developed. The abundance of the grace and power of God being poured out on the Corinthian people, shall we say, had developed a carnal atmosphere of human thinking which was trying to blend itself into the grace of God. This carnal spirit resting on many of those precious saints causes them to sort of run a spiritual race of competition. In other words, I have more gifts or THINGS OF CHRIST than you do. Some people not even in the family of God wants no one else to get ahead of them, no, not even in spiritual matters. Such carnality should never be entertained in Christians.

Imagine believers running a rat race against each other in the things of spirituality, treating the THINGS OF CHRIST as though it is something you gamble with, something you compete against or play with. No beloved, these things of Christ are to be lived in, walked in! In order to walk closely in the family of God every child must recognize what he is supposed to be and do; recognize what, he, through the Spirit, has been given, the potential opportunity or ability to do and do that beloved and no more! Simply being willing to walk with God. Once people reach the place they are just as happy, contented and thrilled to see God using or blessing another believer as they are to see that blessing resting upon themselves, will we then begin to see a people actually showing a Christlikeness in every respect.

The first three verses of Chapter 12 Paul uses to exhort the Corinthian Christians to be thankful for that which the Word of God had accomplished in their lives, seeing how in times past they had been so superstitious (or religious) being led away after all these useless, vain dumb idols by so-called gifted priests or teachers who were supposed to have various gifts from the (planetary) gods. To understand such a statement one would have to be aware of the idolatry which existed in the city of Corinth before Paul came, and see the numerous heathen temples of planetary gods built to Apollos, Venus, Jupiter, etc.. Signs of such idol worship are still visible today. Paul informs the Corinthians no man under the influence of the true Spirit can ever say Jesus is accursed, neither can any one declare Jesus is the Lord, but in the Old Testament is Jehovah God and Paul taught in Ephesians 4:4 there is only ONE LORD!

3 OUTSTANDING WORDS

While studying this chapter on gifts three words used by Paul in verses 4-6 to express certain thoughts seemed to jump up before me. The three words are SPIRIT, LORD AND GOD. Why would Paul choose these three separate words (SPIRIT, LORD, GOD) to express the officework of the Holy Spirit in the distribution of the THINGS OF CHRIST! Paul is dead, yet his revelation of truth lives on, therefore let us consult that revelation in order to see what Paul had in mind when he penned these three separate words, SPIRIT, LORD AND GOD.

To Paul they are not three separate persons. Paul, even in his Jewish religion, believed only in one Eternal God and that truth did not have to change once he came over to Christianity. In the faith he learned the redemptive name of his Lord God (Acts 9:5) was JESUS.

DIFFERENCES IN THE NINE GIFTS

In Verse 4, Paul is ready to show the Corinthians various things concerning the true gifts as he first declares there are diversities of gifts or (THINGS OF CHRIST). True, there are nine different gifts and we desire to study each of them at least enough that we may recognize their various functions within the body of Christ. Paul declares there are diversities of gifts which simply means all different, not one of the nine gifts are alike. For example, tongues is not like prophecy, yet both gifts originate and operate, by one and the selfsame SPIRIT. Wonder why Paul didn’t stick with this word SAME SPIRIT in his next two verses as he does in verse 4?

LORD OF EACH OPERATION

Verse 5, Paul refers to the differences in the administrations or functions of each separate gift and says it was accomplished by the same LORD, not SPIRIT. The reason Paul uses LORD here is because the word SPIRIT itself doesn’t signify that the SPIRIT is LORD or master of every operation of the gifts. In other words, you don’t do what you want to with the gifts, since He is LORD and master of each operation, He operates the gift whenever, wherever and however it pleases Him! Different administrations or functions show that in each person a gift operates through can operate in a number of different ways, therefore, you can’t have a certain rule how it is to function, it simply functions as He wants it, He is the LORD of each operation! It is the Holy Ghost’s administration throughout this one grace age. As a matter of fact, He is the only one who will have an administration in the true body of Christ. We think of presidents in America who have had various administrations in running the country, we refer to Nixon’s presidency as the Nixon Administration. Therefore, in God’s kingdom it is the Holy Ghost’s Administration!

CLIMAX OF GIFT – GOD IS PRAISED

In verse 6, Paul refers to the different operations of the gifts but it is the same GOD who works all in all. Paul uses the word GOD here because God is the highest word that could be used to show the SPIRIT is God, and God means an object of worship. Therefore it is the Spirit as God who deserves the highest admiration and praise for what these gifts have accomplished through their different operations once the gift has reached its fullness or climax. Then in verses 7-28 where ever Paul mentions these gifts or THINGS OF CHRIST he returns to his former expression of THE SAME SPIRIT distributing them throughout the body of Christ as He sees fit! In order for people to catch his meaning in different expressions of the Spirit concerning these gifts he had to use the word LORD and GOD as well as the same SPIRIT showing this one Eternal Spirit was LORD and GOD. Don’t forget, according to verse 3, an entire verse which deals with Jesus, says no man calls Jesus Lord, but by the Holy Ghost!

SPIRIT WON’T LEAVE YOU IGNORANT

Therefore, we know in John 16:14, when Jesus told His disciples when He the Spirit of Truth is come He would be the one who is giving out these gifts. Furthermore, He is also to be Lord over them, and thirdly He is God seeing He is the one to be praised for them; His name is Jesus, He shall take the things of mine and show them unto you. He will never speak of Himself but of Me; He will glorify only Me. Isn’t that what the Spirit is doing here in I Corinthians 12? It is the same Spirit of God who is Lord working in the new office work, distributing the THINGS OF CHRIST after that He, the Spirit of Christ, (the father) in His new office work has first wooed and convicted you of your sin of unbelief, John 16;8-9, bringing you to a realization that you should accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. It is this Spirit of God who is Lord that baptizes you into the mystical body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:13) and beloved, that Spirit of Truth will not leave you ignorant as to the objective of God in your life. Recall that objective of God is that you be conformed to the image of His dear Son (Romans 8:29). However, if you don’t know that His dear Son was Lord God Almighty in flesh and that the Spirit now in you is not some third person but is the very Spirit of Christ who distributes all things of Christ into the mystical body, then all you would know is, there is a Spirit in me, I don’t know where it came from or what it is doing! All I now is I feel it about me. HOGWASH! When the Spirit of Truth is come, He testifies of Christ, telling you all about Christ. He doesn’t leave you in ignorance as to who Christ is, (John 15:25, John 16:13-14). And through a demonstration of these nine gifts, the Spirit distributes throughout the mystical body you see a demonstration of Christ in the earth throughout the Book of Acts.

EVERY BELIEVER GIVEN SOMETHING

Leaving verse 6, Paul now drops his Holy Ghost thought down on to the level of the individual through which the gift will operate. No longer does Paul use the phrase Lord or God to carry over a certain emphasis. Instead he returns to his original phrase, the same Spirit. Once these nine gifts of the Spirit or THINGS OF CHRIST have equally been distributed throughout the entire body of Christ, verse 7 declares, and please remember this following statement in verse 7 can only be applied to a setting similar to Paul’s day in the first church age, the spiritual manifestations of the Spirit is given to every believer (Paul says) to profit withal. Note that, given to every believer, not to profit the individual the gift operates through, but instead is to profit everyone is the body of Christ, according to the Apostle Paul.

EARLY CHURCH CONSISTED OF TRUE BELIEVERS

What a truth is concealed in this small verse! However, in order to grasp such a statement one must recall fully the setting of that early church in Paul’s hour, some 30 years after Pentecost. Here Paul teaches two facts: (1) All believers of that hour had been baptized into the mystical body of Christ, not by water baptism but by the baptism of the Spirit. True, once the early church believer had embraced the gospel of God as taught by the apostles this one Spirit of God baptized every believer into the body of Christ. (2) Every believer once baptized into the mystical body by the same Spirit was also given, along with his portion of the Holy Ghost, a gift or his portion of the THINGS OF CHRIST!

HAD GOSPEL NOT GOTTEN OFF COURSE

However, remember this can only apply to the revelated born again Holy Ghost filled believers who made up this mystical body of Christ on earth in Paul’s day! Had the gospel of Christ not gotten off course after the first century, this setting could still continually have been applied! The same Spirit of Christ which ascended on high, returning ten days later to take up His permanent abode in the church, which at that hour consisted of only 120 believers, however, before the day was finished, according to Acts 2:37-42, 3000 more precious souls were added to that mystical body. Several days later 5000 more Jews we know were added (Acts 4:4) making at least a grand total of 8120 souls filled with the Holy Ghost as the gifts of the Spirit are distributed equally among the body. And get this, not a tare nor unbeliever was in the midst! And so, on down through the centuries of time as people have been truly converted to truth, the same Spirit has given to each his portion of the THINGS OF CHRIST as He baptizes them into the body. For what purpose, that this mystical body, made up strictly of Holy Ghost filled revelated believers might live Christ, teach Christ and demonstrate Christ on the earth. (John 14:12-16, 14-15)

However, one must not forget, according to the revealed scriptures and history itself, everything did not remain under the beautiful leadership of that same Spirit of Christ as was in that first generation of the grace age! No, another Spirit took over to guide the church! By the time the true church had passed out of the Apostolic Age, which overlapped well into the second Century, the church was slowly losing her ability to carry the true Word seed or revelated knowledge of the Word of God as they had so beautifully accomplished within the first generation, that Jesus was truly the Old Testament God in the flesh! Nevertheless, by the time the church reaches 325 A.D., and that man-made Nicean church council called by the Roman Emperor Constantine, the church was now no longer the kind of spiritual church she was when Paul was writing to the Corinthian church during that first age when she was fed by the early five-fold ministry. Instead the church in the 3rd Century was rapidly being filled with carnal, unconverted pagans who had left their religion within the Roman Empire and had come over to Christianity since Constantine had made Christianity a state religion.

The Bible declares in Matthew 13:24-30, that even as early as the 2nd Century, after the death of those first apostles and five-fold ministry, Satan had succeeded in sowing false doctrinal seed among the mystical body and had already begun to implant certain personalities who continued to sow false doctrine. Naturally once such teaching began to take hold of the people’s minds, this automatically wrecked the framework of true revelation as taught in the early church and slowly began brainwashing the minds of the 2nd Century saints causing them to lose that fervency for revelatory knowledge, and the power of God was also beginning to diminish from their midst. Why? Because God will not confirm error! God confirms only the truth as shown in Mark 16:20; Hebrews 2:3-4. Sure, for a while no doubt these believers within the 2nd Century continued to live and exemplify Christ in that of Christian character, rejoicing over the fact they are saved from their sins. Nevertheless, once the devil was permitted to enter into the midst of believers sowing his false doctrine, doctrine which many saints in the 1st Age had already been battling according to the scriptures. Satan, finally entering their midst, led to the warping of their spiritual revelation, the framework of their thinking concerning the fact God is One. Instead Satan slowly now implants into their minds that God is 3 persons. Note, as long as the church was made up of true born again believers, as they were in the days of Paul, Satan could not penetrate the church. Not until 325 A.D., was Satan successful in turning his theory into a creed or church doctrine. Once this promoting of a teaching began what do we see, the diminishing of the power of God as it leaves their midst, for the setting is now no longer as it was in the day of Paul, when He wrote I Corinthians 12:7.

The true revelation of Christ now seems to slowly deteriorate and with it also deteriorates the power of God, because the power of Christ or THINGS OF CHRIST must feed into the framework of the true revelation. God’s presence leaves what is called the church of that hour. Why? Because God cannot confirm error. On and on this deterioration of Truth continued until you reached about 500 A.D., and the church which is now scattered over Europe filled mostly with unbelievers is approaching the threshold of the dreaded 1000 years of Dark Ages or Satan’s Millennium. Christianity, as known during the first age when Paul addressed the Corinthian church in chapter 12, simply did not exist! Therefore, I Corinthians 12:7 could not apply to this type of people. No beloved, THE THINGS OF CHRIST Paul spoke of concerning how the Holy Ghost operated these gifts in the body and further said every man was given a gift of the Spirit could now no longer be applied to such a church.

GIFTS DEMONSTRATED IN DARK AGES

Nevertheless, here and there during that Dark period, God by His grace would raise up certain men who possessed only a dim vision of what little spiritual light was available in that hour and God would be seen to confirm and bless that, through certain gifts and demonstrations of His power. No, by no means, was God confirming this well organized belief of God in three persons of a trinity or any other carnal church doctrine. God merely confirmed their spirit of love to detest this evil corruption within a blinded religious system! No where did God ever confirm with signs following the doctrine of the Catholic church!

That beloved is the position the church world lay in once the first dawning light of Protestantism, around 1500, broke over the horizon and slowly through time God began to restore certain basic doctrinal apostolic truths to the church. However, around the opening of the 20th Century the believers are brought back unto a Holy Ghost experience wherein once again in great measure do we see the gifts of God begin to automatically function wherein the gift might once again profit withal, according to I Corinthians 12:7, and on the end of that final gentile Laodicean church age came a gentile church age messenger to restore within Laodicea all Truth which had been embraced by the apostles, but lost through these various church ages. Yet God returned this Truth to restore a potential bride of this hour shortly before Christ returns. Through this God-sent messenger the believers could now make a full return to the teachings of that first church age or first generation after Pentecost and experience, once again, that same Pentecostal new birth experience thereby embracing the one Spirit who distributes al these THINGS OF CHRIST into the mystical body, whereby the body might demonstrate Christ once again in the earth as Paul had taught.

However isn’t it strange, now that God has given us this restoring message to place us back whereby I Corinthians 12:7 might operate in our lives as effectively as it did in the first age, that now we have people who declare they are a part of this message, who when they were out there in some Pentecostal church, they fully believed in these THINGS OF CHRIST! And no doubt occasionally, or quite often, God may have used them in different operation of these gifts to a certain measure. However, it seems as if the very moment they stepped outside the doors of that carnal organizational system and stepped over into this glorious revelated message of apostolic truth, which places us in perfect alignment with I Corinthians 12, suddenly it seems all their electrical wires from glory have been cut lose and everything spiritual in the way of gifts suddenly stopped! Beloved, it should not be that way! Nevertheless such a condition does exist, although I am sure somewhere God will change the situation even if He has to use a world condition to do so.

NOT BELIEVERS AND TARES

During that early hour the church, or mystical body which had a setting such as I Corinthians 12, was not filled with tares and true believers as you see once the church approaches the 2nd Century. And in the hour of I Corinthians 12:7, everyone who was being added to the church by the Spirit not only was baptized with the Holy Ghost, but it was this baptism of the Holy Ghost which placed revelated believers in the mystical body of Christ, thus completing the New Birth. Hence the baptism of the Holy Ghost is not something optional, IT IS A MUST!

HAVE I A GIFT?

Does that mean, someone in the body of Christ may ask – that I have a gift in my life? Certainly! Isn’t that what Paul said! Now I remind you the setting, gospel-wise, must be the same as in Paul’s day to make this scripture, I Corinthians 12:7, apply in your life. Remember, when the Holy Ghost baptizes you into His mystical body, He is already fully aware of your capacity as you dedicate your life obediently unto His will. That Spirit of Grace within you called the Father, called the Spirit of Christ, called the Holy Ghost, knows the ability you possess in allowing the Spirit of God to work His will and purpose in your life. Therefore, according to Paul’s teaching there is the potential of some gift lying in every Holy Ghost filled child of God (though bear in mind the setting of I Corinthians 12:7 was within that first generation of saints in the grace who embraces all the truth to their bosom, in an hour when a congregation lived holy and clean, not resembling the man of the world whatsoever.)

PAUL NOT ILLUSTRATING HOW TO GET GIFTS

Note these nine gifts, even though the church did not fully understand their spiritual operation, they were nonetheless already operating in their full capacity within the body of Christ on each during that first church age as Christ had promised in John 16:13-15 that they would be! Christ had kept His promise! The evidence was most visible among the body of Christ!

Isn’t this beautiful, Paul isn’t writing to the Corinthians church as well as the other churches who would read this letter also, explaining unto them anything about how or what to do in order to get the gifts started to operating in their life. No, they needed only an understanding of the gifts which were already operating. They needed to know how to treat and respect these things of Christ now operating in His body. It wasn’t a question of how many of these things they could have, provided they could pray and fast, because Paul tells them the gifts were distributed by the same SPIRIT, as He saw fit, NOT ACCORDING TO WHAT THEY WANTED! As the person was baptized into the body of Christ by this one Spirit, that potential, or THING OF CHRIST, came with the believers portion of Christ! And Paul declares to one is given one thing and to another is given something else. Paul is showing the church they must not get in the way of these gifts with carnal ideas toward them, because they are only the vessel through which the gift operates. The Holy Ghost, who is Lord of the operation of the gift, will operate it whenever He Himself so chooses! It can not ever be operated wherever or whenever we choose, says Paul.

PART 4 – RECOGNIZING THE 9 GIFTS

Having informed the Corinthian church, everyone in that church age up to the hour within the first generation of believers had already received the manifestation of the Spirit to profit withal. Paul begins with verse 8 to name the various, different nine gifts of the Spirit. Beloved, these THINGS OF CHRIST are given by that Spirit who will never speak of Himself, but seeks only to glorify and exemplify Christ through these nine gifts. Therefore, to make a foolish statement as some are doing today, saying there is no gift of the Spirit within the true mystical body of Christ today, is the same as to say, there is no Christ in the body of true revelated believers as was found in the first generation of the revelated saints! A statement of such caliber is to further admit that as a people of the end time you have never even been returned through the message of the prophet to the true apostolic teachings of the apostles, for the teaching here according to the Apostle Paul is, that once the Holy Ghost placed you into the body of Christ He gave to each believer a certain potential of the THINGS OF CHRIST, else how will Christ be lived and exemplified to this age!

NO. 1 – WORD OF WISDOM

Having clearly stated in verse 7 everyone in the body of Christ (up to that hour) had received something in the way of the manifestation of the Spirit, Paul begins by saying in verse 8, “for to one person in that body is given the WORD OF WISDOM.” Notice, the Spirit did not give to everyone the Word of Wisdom because Paul further states, to another He gave the Word of Knowledge to another something else, etc. This thing of wisdom is seen continually in Christ’s ministry. Read especially Matthew 21:23-27. Wisdom kept Him out of many traps set by religious leaders. Wisdom gave Him the correct answer. Read Matthew 22:15-46. This wisdom was one of the THINGS OF CHRIST to be placed in the body!

WHAT IS IT?

What is wisdom? There is only one book on earth that can show us what Holy Ghost wisdom is like and that is the Bible. In this book we have a beautiful account which portrayed what wisdom is or the manifestations of what wisdom is. The Bible speaks of Solomon, who in his day did not desire silver and gold, instead asked for the wisdom of God in order to know how to lead his people in Israel. Jesus himself referred to the wisdom of Solomon declaring how the Queen of Sheba came to hear and see the wisdom of Solomon (Matthew 12:42) and Jesus said, “Behold a greater than Solomon is here!” Two women appeared before Solomon. (I Kings 3:16-28). Both had given birth to children and even shared the same bed. One woman apparently had smothered her baby and out of her grief for a live child stole the other woman’s baby. An argument arose which brought in the elders of the city, who after examining the situation, declared it was one which required Solomon’s wisdom to unravel. Listening to both women’s stories, Solomon drew his sword to divide the living child in half. Watch the wisdom of God in operation. Wisdom can be cruel, yet it never fails to get the job done. Solomon knew the real mother would give up the child rather than see it killed. One woman cried out to spare the baby’s life and give it to the other woman, thus Solomon knew who the real mother was.

Sometimes the wisdom of God may not appear ethical and at times appears quite crude, nevertheless, it is always effective in assisting you to make the right decision or judgment. Your case in needing wisdom may never be like that of Solomon’s, yet you may have a decision which you cannot possibly know what to do or what decision to make without God’s wisdom to assist you. What then is the operation of this gift of the word of wisdom? It is the impartation of Godly wisdom that God Himself imparts to you through His Spirit, which is already in you if you are a member of the true revelated body of Christ. Wisdom often serves as guidance! Suddenly you are faced with an important decision, you need an answer pondering the situation which confronts you, it appears through one line of thought the thing could go one way while looking at it from another angle it appears it would go another way. Sooner or later it is something you must face and when you do it will require action on your part in making a decision. It may be a decision of such nature there is no book you can consult, not even the Bible for an answer. Recall, the Bible records only the action of wisdom portrayed in others of by-gone days as situations and conditions affected their individual lives. There might be a similarity to fit your need, then again there might not. Remember, there is not a situation which God cannot handle.

A LITTLE WISDOM IMPARTED

God is unlimited in wisdom, therefore, the Word of Wisdom referred to by Paul as a gift given by this same spirit who is also God and Lord does by no means imply that God gives to the believer of this particular gift all the wisdom which God possesses. No! It is only a Word of Wisdom. Sometime in your life a condition arises where it appears Satan has you hemmed in, nevertheless, if you walk humbly before God, He won’t allow that situation to last forever without revealing to you what to do.

Seeing that this godly wisdom which was first in Christ is now in the mystical body of Christ, God may choose to give you the answer you need personally, or on the other hand, He may give your answer through another believer, and that Word of Wisdom pertaining to the certain situation you are in will show you exactly what to do. The answer is the imparted Word of Wisdom needed to meet that particular situation. Remember in our study of the gifts or the THINGS OF CHRIST we are only seeking to identify the gifts that are definitely within the true body of Christ in order that we may recognize their function. Our purpose is not to show how they operate within a believer, they will operate however the Holy Ghost wants them to operate.

Wisdom may appear simple, nevertheless it works. Was it quite simple in Solomon’s case, he simply picked up a sword to divide a living child. It doesn’t even have to be a huge task in order for that gift, the Word of Wisdom, to manifest itself. The situation at hand may be very small and requires only a small word or deed to work out this problem, nevertheless, whether large or small whatever the answer comes be sure to give God glory. If you can’t thank Him for the small things, you will never recognize Him in the large things. Paul teaches in I Corinthians 14:1, that we should desire the cultivation of the spiritual gifts in our life. If we desire this gift of the Word of Wisdom of this God who is unlimited in wisdom, then beware we be not a person prone to much gossip. Gossip and the Word of Wisdom would surely somewhere take our lives off balance.

NO. 2 – THE WORD OF KNOWLEDGE

The second gift or THING OF CHRIST mentioned by Paul, also recorded in verse 8, presented to (still) another person in the body of Christ by the same Spirit (which never spoke of Himself) is the Word of Knowledge. Yes, definitely within the body of Christ some (not all) whosoever the Spirit chooses to receive this gift are given the Word of Knowledge. The Word of Knowledge was seen in Christ’s ministry in John 1:47-51 and Matthew 17:27. How do we recognize the Word of Knowledge in operation? Again when the hour arrives that you are confronted with something, shall we say a situation develops and you need to know what course to take, you are faced with two lines of thought. Seeing God’s knowledge of everything including the future is unlimited and shall we say, somewhere in the future unbeknown to you, you are about to be involved in a car accident. Through this Word of Knowledge God may speak and warn you as a believer concerning this accident. With the Word of Knowledge there is a good chance you can avoid this accident, provided you heed what you are shown concerning the accident. Either God Himself, who is on the inside of you, may choose to show you personally through your own fleshly vessel what will happen if you do a certain thing, or He may choose to use another believer to warn you concerning the wreck.

LEVELS OF OPERATION

Recall in verse 5-6, Paul declared there were differences of administrations concerning the gifts as well as different functions or operations of the gifts, nevertheless, it was the same LORD controlling it all. There are differences in the operations of these gifts. The Word of Knowledge can appear on 3 levels: (1) VISIONS – which is the highest order of the Word of Knowledge. Many people observed Bro. Branham under the anointing of the Holy Ghost as he would inform people of the secrets of their hearts and people thought this was a gift of discernment in operation. No, that particular part operating in the prophet was not discernment, or as Paul said, the gift of discernment of spirits. No beloved, that working within the prophet to inform him of the secrets of people’s hearts was none other than the operation of the Word of Knowledge! You will see the difference between the two gifts once we study the discernment of spirits. When Bro. Branham looked upon a person and told them their names and such, that wasn’t discernment, that was Knowledge! God who has all knowledge knew all of that, didn’t He? Therefore, when the prophet told people all these things to build their faith, that was a Gift of Knowledge drawing off the past tense. When he said I see through the vision that you are up for an operation, that is knowledge drawing on the future tense. And remember beloved, as we stated, visions are the highest manifestations of the Word of Knowledge. Knowledge is that gift which you always read about being in the lives of the prophets. (2) DREAMS – is the secondary level of Knowledge while (3) IMPRESSIONS – is the third level of Knowledge. God may choose to simply impress upon you something so heavy that you literally, without a vision or dream, feel it in your soul so strongly this is what will happen if you pursue the plan you have in mind. In a prophet’s life, such as Bro. Branham’s, the gift of Knowledge was continually working on one of the three levels – through visions, dreams or impressions.

IMPRESSION THE 3RD

Back to the car wreck, say you’re planning to do a certain thing in the future, for instance take a trip and the very moment plans are made, suddenly inside of you have that feeling or impression, no, it’s not a dream and it’s not a vision, it’s the 3rd level of operation and God is going to permit you to draw off of His unlimited knowledge of the future, and concerning that trip you have an impression that if it is carried out something is going to happen. That something inside of you is the Holy Spirit operating through the WORD OF KNOWLEDGE, because He possesses all knowledge of all things and it is through this gift that God imparts knowledge, either by vision, dream or impression, and here by the 3rd level of the operation of the gift, an impression, you have received warning if you take that trip something will happen. You see, God knows that and He further knows how to press this upon your Spirit. What is it all about? God the Spirit is merely allowing you, through this gift, the ability to have just a little foresight into what He already knows. He does that to equip you with a little understanding whereby we may prepare ourselves to either avoid, in this case, the accident or once it happens whatever the situation may be you will have prepared yourself for nothing drastic to come out of it. Irregardless to which of the three levels; visions, dream or impression, it is the Spirit of God through this gift seeking to guide His children, because as we saw in verse 7, the manifestation of the Spirit (in some manner) is given to every true believer to profit withal.

EXAMPLES OF KNOWLEDGE OPERATING

Several examples of the gift of the WORD OF KNOWLEDGE I would like to mention. First that great 2nd Century martyr Polycarp, John the Beloved’s loyal student who lived among the 2nd Century disciples, in an hour when the truth was deteriorating away from the right revelated, apostolic standard as it was in the first age, was shown in advance concerning the martyr’s death he would die. Peter the apostle also testifies how he could see himself leaving the scene of life, and Paul, did not he also declare how he knew his own departure was getting close. It is because they lived so sensitive to the Spirit of God, the people allowed the Holy Ghost to guide their lives. Returning from Asia Minor to Jerusalem, Paul testifies how he would go to Jerusalem bound in the Spirit. Paul had that feeling in his soul how he would meet trouble in Jerusalem. Paul declared how the Holy Ghost bore that same witness in every city that bonds and afflictions awaited him in Jerusalem. (Acts 20:23)

NO. 3 – REVEALED FAITH VS. PRESUMPTUOUS FAITH

The third thing of Christ Paul mentioned is referred to as THE GIFT OF FAITH. Note if you will how Paul groups these 9 gifts in groups of threes. WISDOM, KNOWLEDGE and now FAITH makes up what is referred to as the thought (or mind) gifts. Out of all 9 gifts FAITH is the one gift which truly affects us more perhaps than the others, because of the necessity of FAITH even for conversion and the new birth. I sincerely believe this gift of FAITH, though on different levels, absolutely lays in each believer’s life and no doubt when conditions are perfect, if we walk with God as we should, we will see the gift of FAITH more in operation to produce the purpose in which it was placed with the body of Christ to accomplish.

What is scriptural FAITH and what does it feed from? In short, scriptural FAITH (though it appears on different levels) is a revelatory faith or is something you can believe in because it is something that has previously been revealed unto you by the Spirit to do, then BY FAITH you do it! It is a promise of God whereby you may link your FAITH up to. Hence, revelatory faith is something far more than merely blind belief. It is not having faith in something when there is no assurance that something will happen once you have believed. REVEALED FAITH is not blind reaching out in the unknown, hoping you made the right decision or choice!

By examining Hebrews 11, we will better understand what scriptural revealed FAITH is. By the way, Hebrews 11:6 declares without this kind of faith it is impossible to please God! Verse 1 declares, “Faith is the substance (or the assurance) of things hoped for, the evidence (or the conviction) of things not seen.” Then we are presented with a list of Old Testament saints showing how their lives had all been motivated through revelatory faith where both conviction and assurance played a great part in their faith. In verse 1, the original word for substance means assurance, hence revealed faith is an assurance of the thing hoped for and it is the conviction of things not seen. Inside every believer is that certain feeling which produces certain convictions. Therefore, revealed faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Throughout that 11th chapter of Hebrews, we are confronted with patriarchs the writer uses to exemplify that kind of revealed faith.

As we have often stated, not one of these men mentioned here who walked by faith, from Abel on down, suddenly came up with some wild notion or idea (which they called faith) that they wanted to travel or journey the route they embarked upon. No, not one of them one day suddenly had a wild notion, strike them to do what they did and call that action on their part faith! If they themselves or some other human prompted them to believe what they did, then where did that particular desire originate?

In each case God spoke before they acted – AND HERE IS FAITH IN ACTION! Once God had spoken to their inner being, that planted within them an assurance and a conviction needed to move out in the direction they were told. Faith on their part was merely obeying the voice and holding on until what was supposed to happen, did happen. It was by no means a presumptuous faith on their part. In each case God had spoken!

REVEALED FAITH IN NOAH

Watch the scripture portraying this revealed faith in Noah and others. And remember, without this faith it is impossible to please God! This faith that pleased God is not a presumptuous faith. Verse 7 declares by faith Noah built an Ark! Beloved, this doesn’t mean Noah was sitting around one day watching the growing evil of the hour and suddenly decided it would be wisdom on his part to build a boat, seeing that when it rained a flood would come and all would be drowned if he didn’t! Yet that is about the idea of our modern teaching of faith, simply take it by faith, move out by faith and God will honor etc…. He honored Noah, Abraham and others because they moved by faith. Beloved, a revealed Bible faith does not work that way. Suppose Noah had taken it all by presumptuous faith, that God was going to destroy the world by water and he built himself a boat without having previously heard one word from God concerning a flood? No, God never told Noah, you simply take it by faith! God told Noah what to do! Noah’s test of faith was this, how do I know or what proof do I have it is going to rain? The assurance and conviction in him that a flood was coming was in the fact God had spoken and said it will (and God can’t lie).

Noah had never seen rain nor a boat that large, nevertheless, Noah’s test of faith came over whether to build such a thing, seeing there wasn’t that much water around to float it. But by faith Noah built an ark! If a voice speaks to you which you are convinced is the voice of God to do something which you have never previously thought of doing, and secondly you recognize the natural impossibility of the thing ever happening, would that not be a test to you to do it? What assurance would you have the thing would ever happen? Yet if you are positive the voice which spoke was God’s voice (As Noah was) and you act by faith upon what that voice said, then you are acting upon revealed faith and not presumptuous faith or as we hear of today, simply take it by faith. Your very action in doing what the voice has commanded you becomes the expression of assurance and conviction inside you that once you perform this deed which you were instructed to do (irregardless to how the voice came) it is because your convictions which motivate you to do this, acting on this revealed faith means you are just as positive what you are doing once it is finished or promised, that is acting on faith (revealed faith)! And remember, it is the only kind of faith that can please God! Noah wasn’t a man who looked upon the evil of the day and knew what to do. Oh, no, he did not know what to do until God spoke to him! Recall, Genesis 6 declares after God looked upon the evil situation He then saw Noah, a just and perfect man in his generation. However, now until the Eternal Spirit approached Noah did he know what to do. Yet Hebrews 11:7 declares, by faith he built a boat to save his household. Building a boat so long and so high wasn’t something Noah had thought about. I repeat, what Noah did was not presumptuous thinking and then moving out on his own thoughts saying, I will do it by faith, God will honor it. Noah acted on the only kind of faith that pleases God – REVEALED FAITH!

ABRAHAM – BY FAITH

Another example of a man acting on the only kind of faith that can please God was ABRAHAM. In verses 8-10, Abraham wasn’t sitting outside his tent one day when suddenly he got the thought or notion in his mind he would, by faith, move to a strange land, therefore, he would simply move out by faith and God would honor his move. No, God spoke to Abraham and told him to move! Verse 8 declares by faith Abraham sojourned in a strange land. Where then does Abraham’s faith enter into the picture? How do I know as I move out this is a move in the right direction, what assurance do I have this new land will be a good land? How do I know the outcome? The Bible declares Abraham believed God and staggered not at the promises, yet by no means was the move one of presumptuous faith. He acted on revealed faith – the only kind that can please God! Even though he was tested every step of the journey, it was still revelatory faith, God spoke to Abraham to make the move! Abraham, like Noah, was guided by that assurance and conviction he felt inside his bosom. His testing along the way was to build within him that type of spiritual character God desired to instill in Abraham, seeing he was to become the father of faithful. Father of all those who through the centuries would also walk by revealed faith, in other words, acting upon what God told them to do.

Speaking of presumptuous faith of which we hear so much about today, just move out by faith and God will honor you, I am ruling out the fact God, often in His mercy, does honor what we do through a mere presumptuous faith, yet remember, that is not walking by revelatory faith, the only kind of faith that pleases God and without it it is impossible to please Him! God is not obligated to honor presumptuous faith as He is revealed faith.

SAVING FAITH – WHAT IS IT?

Seeing the scriptures boldly declare in order to be in the kingdom of God we must first be saved by that kind of faith that pleases God, that revelated faith – without it it is impossible to please God, don’t you think we should establish just what saving faith is and what God expects from it! Remember it is not the gift of faith spoken of in I Corinthians 12:9. Why did Jesus declare, no man comes to me except the father draw him (John 6:44)? No, you cannot be saved whenever you choose, there must first be that convicting or drawing power of the Spirit called Father. Jesus, referring to Isaiah, declared all that should come to me will be learned of the Father. Therefore, before you can ever know God in revelatory truth as to who He is, it is going to require revelatory faith of the Spirit to be imparted to you as it was in Hebrews 11. After God has convicted you of your sins, it will require a revelatory faith to start you out walking in faith with God.

THE GIFT OF FAITH – WHAT IS IT?

Having briefly explored several aspects of the revealed faith, along with presumptuous faith, let us now examine the gift of faith in I Corinthians 12:9. This gift of faith is not that tried and tested faith of which we spoke. No, instead it is that special anointing or operation of the body of Christ. The gift of faith is the anointing or the demonstration of that imparted faith to be exercised only in an hour when it is needed, mainly to minister to someone standing in need of prayer or simply a word wisely spoken through that particular anointing of faith. Regardless to whatever manner that gift of faith in the believer operates, it will always accomplish God’s purpose. Remember in the discussion of these 9 gifts it is not my intention to tell you how they operate, seeing the scriptures declare there are diversities (differences) of operation. Our desire only is to show their identity as they have been scripturally placed in the body of Christ. The point is, irregardless to public opinion concerning these THINGS OF CHRIST, if He placed one gift in the body He wouldn’t stop until He placed all the gifts in the body! And once that hour arrives for the body of Christ to actually take on the full measure of the stature of Christ, as recorded in Ephesians 4:12-16, I assure you it won’t only be in the stature of the revelatory part of Christ, it will also be in the expression of portraying or showing forth the THINGS OF CHRIST! After all beloved, wasn’t that God’s entire objective of having a mystical body in the earth to begin with, to represent Jesus Christ here on earth!

The gift of faith is something you have not worked for, had you done so it would not be a gift! It is that special anointing which rests upon us that when we look at a situation which often seems hopeless, we nonetheless have that unshakable assurance inside of us that everything is going to be all right. (Luke 8:49-50 is one example where the gift of faith operated in Christ’s ministry.) There have been many men of faith in this century greatly anointed of God to pray for afflictions of divers kinds of diseases. No, it wasn’t the gift of the WORD OF KNOWLEDGE that assures them everything will be all right; it wasn’t being able to tell the sick who they were, what city and state they were from, their house number etc., no, none of that! Nevertheless something inside these men God was using, when they came in contact with such an afflicted person, it is that special gift of faith that rose upward and assured the man of God as he lay hands on that incurable disease that every thing would turn out all right.

Let us bring this gift of faith down to your level. Say we are faced with a situation or circumstance which seemingly there is no way out. If God has not, through the gift of knowledge, already fore shown us the way out then once you are under this kind of pressure it is then this gift of faith will shine. Whether it would simply be God anointing or inspiring you to give you that needed assurance that everything will be all right, although in that hour things couldn’t look darker, or whether God might simply impress upon another believer, operating through the gift of faith to say unto you – the Lord impresses me to tell you not to worry over this situation because everything will be all right. Don’t you think for a moment, beloved, that somewhere out there in front of us there is not going to be all kind of room for this gift of faith to operate!

NO. 4 – GIFTS OF HEALING

Verse 9, Paul mentions another gift, only here he refers to it in the plurality – the GIFTS OF HEALING – not the gift of healing. Yes, there are many (kinds) of gifts of healing placed throughout the true body of Christ. Remember we are not discussing how any of these gifts operate, we are not even identifying the effects of them upon individuals through which they operate, we are seeking only to identify them in their operation. The gift of healing is that special anointing of God placed inside a vessel of clay which may or may not be accompanied with outward physical manifestations.

Concerning this endtime message of revelated truth, we witnessed a man who possessed a gift in his life which I seriously doubt such a gift has ever been seen in all church history, including the Book of Acts outside the life of Christ. However, don’t you try to compare other gifts on the same level with the gift in this man! That attitude does the program of God injustice! Maybe by illustrating with a quarter I could better show you what I mean. A quarter is equivalent to 25 pennies, isn’t it? Yet you wouldn’t belittle the penny simply because it wasn’t a quarter, would you? I grant you, a penny won’t buy much, yet you can get a penny’s worth and if you had 25 pennies you would buy the same thing you could with a quarter, wouldn’t you? Therefore, never belittle God’s spiritual monetary program. True, He does have certain gifts within the 9 which stand out far above and beyond the others, even as you have certain organs within the human body that also stand out far above other organs, yet you don’t belittle uncomely organs simply because certain ones are not a noticeable as others.

Keep in mind, when Christ placed Himself in the New Testament church He distributed Himself by His Spirit whereby there is going to be different levels of His representation, characteristics, demonstrations illustrated throughout His mystical body. And certainly it would be wrong to pick one gift above the other. Yet sorry to say, this is what we find today. Back in the 50’s we had a true deliverance move of God. God anointed men with faith and through them He also places the gift of healing, because it was God’s hour to present to the world a demonstration of His goodness and mercy through that of healing, etc. Men who knew little of the Truth of this hour, yet out of a simple prayer of faith prayed for multitudes of sick and God honored their prayers. Bear in mind we are not discussing the disobedience of any individuals who fail to walk further along in Truth, we are only discussing these gifts and how you can’t pivot one against the other because each one has a particular purpose and objective given by the Spirit to produce a certain ultimate goal or objective which the Master and Lord placed in His mystical body.

OUTWARD MANIFESTATION

Concerning the gifts of healing, they can be manifested through that of some kind of physical sign to the individual they operate through. Outward physical sensation can even accompany the gift whereby the individual may know their vessel is being anointed for that particular gift of healing to operate, since I don’t possess the other person’s anointing or sensation I cannot possibly explain the operation of the gift in someone else’s life, only that individual through which the gift operated would know that. Our purpose is to examine strictly from the point of identification. The individuals themselves will recognize their own anointing. How could a person declare God had given them a gift of tongues if they never heard themselves in another language, the same would be true with the gift of divine healing.

FALSE IDEA

Beloved, here is the sad, pathetic attitude or feeling among many who declare they follow this true revelated message, and until God creates some world shaking event to shake such people into a different frame of thinking they, no doubt, will continue on in this frame of mind. That lopsided thinking concerns the gift God placed in Bro. Branham’s life, and no doubt what God did through that man’s life He will never repeat in that measure again. Nevertheless, we must realize many men prayed for the sick with great results years prior to any of Bro. Branham’s meetings. Therefore, don’t think for a moment as some do, that there wasn’t divine healing before the prophet came to the age! To those with that kind of attitude I would have to ask, where on earth have you been? In early Pentecost there were such men as Wigglesworth, Charles Price or Bosworth, etc. True, these men in their respective hour did not see the truth revelatory wise that many of our readers are walking in, and I would have to say that you wouldn’t be seeing any more truth today than what they saw had it not been for a church age prophet messenger who was sent to the age! Nevertheless, chapters could be written concerning the early years those men ministered to the sick and God confirmed their action by healing the sick. True, their healings were not on an outstanding world-wide scale, national or city scale later demonstrated throughout those years of 50’s. However, healing was evident in those early Pentecostal years leading into the late 40’s and 50’s.

GIFT IN PROPHET

My personal feeling why God placed such an outstanding gift in this one man’s life we call Bro. Branham, the messenger to Laodicea, was because there was a message he had to preach and the gift in his life was truly a higher anointing to draw special attention to the vessel of clay who was going to declare that message. Believe me, the demonstration of that gift in his life wasn’t to declare to the world; Look, you have never seen healing until this hour! It is sad when people look at it that way and furthermore will go off and declare nobody even had the Holy Ghost until Bro. Branham brought the teaching to the age! God forbid such silly teaching of carnality! Beloved, when God declared to another He gave the gifts of healing, you will have to accept it whether you want to or not, because He, by His Spirit, distributed plurality gifts of healing throughout the body and you can’t interpret it on the basis of what you heard and saw demonstrated in the prophet’s life. That great anointing was strictly a vindication of a message as well as a messenger. And no doubt you will never see it again performed in that fashion. It was not even in the Book of Acts, which portrayed the life of the apostles and early church as well, but only in the life of Christ. Yet at no time in the apostles’ lives did anyone ever line up people in prayer lines and one by one they were told their names, addresses, illnesses, etc. True, the gift of knowledge operated throughout Peter marvelously when he told Annanias and Sapphira what they did and God vindicated it with death. A similarity is seen in the Apostle Paul’s ministry when he spoke to a man who was trying to lead astray his converts, God rebuke you, be blind for so many days and unable to see, declared Paul! No one speaks in that manner unless first he knows in advance that individual is going to be struck with blindness, yet no where in the Book of Acts or in church history do we see those men forming prayer lines and telling one after the other their names, addresses, etc. Most of the miracles recorded were performed through the prayer of faith or the gift of healing.

Even the gift of miracles lay in the lives of those men, yet no where on record did the gift of the word of knowledge ever operate in any believer as it operated in the life of Bro. Branham. However, don’t belittle God’s gifts as some have because you don’t see them operate in others in this fashion!

SPECIAL ANOINTING

Bro. Branham had a special anointing upon him which worked through his hand against diseases and afflictions unto such a point if he did not remove his wrist watch the power of God was known to have shattered his unbreakable watch crystal. Remember beloved, the gifts of healing can either be accomplished by physical manifestation or certain other sensations which only that individual through whom the gift operates will know and understand.

To another, God says, the gifts of healing – And how would any man know that these gifts lay there in his life, placed by this same Spirit, unless somewhere they are evident through certain sensational healings! Only the person in whom the gift operates will know the anointing of God as the gift itself is being stimulated in behalf of someone who is to receive the benefits of the gift. Don’t misunderstand, I am not telling you how to operate the gift, we seek only to identify it and remind you that somewhere either some physical or emotional sensation would accompany the gift, however, it is up to the person alone who possesses the gift to become acquainted enough with the operation of the gift itself to know its operation.

NO. 5 – GIFT OF MIRACLES

The next gift given to still another believer yet by the same spirit, of whom Jesus declared will never speak of Himself but only show the things of Christ – is the WORKING OF MIRACLES. With this gift we will definitely see the difference between a divine healing and a miracle in healing, although we can associate the working of miracles along in the same category with the gifts of healings much the same as we would associate speaking in tongues with that of interpretation, because without the gift of tongues the true benefit to the hearer would never be understood.

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HEALING & MIRACLE

Understand there is a difference between a healing and a miracle. Say someone has TB who received prayer and over the period of weeks the doctor checks the patient declaring something is happening, in other words the reaction of the tests if showing less and less positive, yet still minor traces remain of TB. He instructs his patient to return in 2 weeks. This next checkup shows TB is lessening and this time he instructs his patient to return in 3 months where upon this checkup shows a completely negative test, no sign of TB whatsoever. That beloved, was a healing but not a miracle. What is healing in relation to a miracle? Healing is God’s own act of slowly allowing you to recover from something, whereas a miracle is instant. For example, say a man is totally blind and all functions of his natural eyesight have completely deteriorated, either destroyed by accident or disease, and doctors declare an eye operation would in no-wise be successful. Here is the difference between a healing and a miracle. If the person is prayed for and the power of God begins to undo slowly through a process of days, weeks, months and etc. that damaged eyesight until vision has returned, that is a healing! However, if the eye was prayed for and the individual instantly saw, the divine act of God immediately reversed the entire situation of the eye and made a miracle out of it.

Another instance of miracles would be if a person had a cancerous growth on the side of the face, prayer is offered and the cancer immediately disappears. That would be the work of the Gift of Miracles whereas had the cancer, over a process of time, eventually disappeared as it continually shrank, that places it under the category of healing. There are many evidences of miracles in our generation granted to people through the prayer of faith, through the Word of Knowledge and through the expression of the Gift of Healing. Miracles are whenever God immediately reverses the order of the situation or immediately undoes the existing condition.

GIFT OF MIRACLES MEETS NEEDS

Too often we want to associate miracles with the opening of the Red Sea or Jesus calming the stormy Sea of Galilee or perhaps Christ raising the widow’s dead son. True, these are great miracles which immediately changed the present tense condition unto just the opposite, didn’t it? Although throughout the New Testament area miracles are more closely associated with that of meeting the physical needs of mankind such as Peter and John on the way to the temple where lay the lame man, placed daily at the gate to beg alms. Peter and John no doubt had often times passed that poor man, nevertheless, on this particular morning they were anointed with the Gift of Miracles. No, we are not aware of the particular anointing resting on those men or what began to transpire in Peter’s life shortly before he commanded the lame man to rise and walk, Acts 3:1-11. Commanding the lame man to rise and walk, Peter took him by the right hand (verse 7 declares) and lifted him up and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength as he went leaping off unto the temple ground, praising and glorifying God. THAT BELOVED WAS A MIRACLE! Furthermore, it was the Gift of Miracles in operation. That miracle produced and instant healing for the lame man.

PHILLIP’S MIRACLE UNUSUAL

Let us examine another miracle which happened in the life of a deacon by the name of Phillip, Acts 8:39, when Phillip was given a free air ride after baptizing a eunuch of Ethiopia. However, this type of miracle could never be classified as the gift of miracles operating in the body of Christ as spoken of by Paul. Here was a miracle of God yet it wasn’t a miracle in the nature of a gift of miracles spoken in I Corinthians 12:10. Bear in mind, through this study our only purpose is to identify the function of these gifts whereby we may recognize their presence in the body of Christ seeing the Spirit has placed them there to operate.

NO. 6 – GIFT OF PROPHECY

To another person, Paul declares, is given another of THE THINGS OF CHRIST, which you recall was in His corporeal body and which this time He refers to as PROPHECY. What is Prophecy? It is God expressing His thought to you personally or to two or more persons in an understandable language of the people who are listening. For instance, if you had a congregation of only French speaking people, then God’s gift of Prophecy would address them IN FRENCH, not in English as they could only understand French. In prophecy, the Holy Spirit is using some person’s vocabulary to get this inspired point across. The inspiration for the operation of the gift would come upon the individual to be used, and since there are diversities of a variety of operations within different people (according to verse 6) that anointing would come upon the person and as the gift operated it would be God expressing His own thoughts in an understandable language of the people He desired to address.

3 REACHES OF PROPHECY

Remember a prophecy can have three reaches. God can be speaking (1) in the present tense, and within the prophecy He may choose to reach (2) into the past tense, to bring out an example or illustration and then if God so chooses that prophecy can project its thought (3) into the future tense. Prophecy, according to Paul, is for edification, exhortation or comfort (I Corinthians 14:3). Yes, God can be speaking in a present tense and reach into the past calling your attention to a former time where He has done something for Israel, etc. The highest degree of prophecy is when that prophecy reaches out into the future and speaks of things yet to come. However remember, simply because a person prophesies does not imply they are a prophet, because prophecy can also rest upon a woman as well as a man, I Corinthians 11:5.

MISTAKEN IDEAS ABOUT PROPHECY

Some have the mistaken idea that a Gift of Prophecy only reaches into the future tense of time and if it doesn’t it isn’t prophecy, while still others – because the dictionary defines prophecy as preaching, has the mistaken idea that prophecy is preaching the gospel. Therefore, when the scripture declared in Acts 21:8-9 that Phillip the evangelist had four virgin daughters, all of whom prophesied, to them this meant Phillip had four women preachers in his household! Beloved, I am not a woman hater but there were no women preachers in the early church! Paul, the Apostle to the gentiles, declared in I Timothy 2:11-12, he would not suffer woman to teach (the scriptures) or to usurp authority over a man but to be in silence, or to learn in silence, with all subjection! The only offices available in the early church for the ministry of the Word set in by the Holy Ghost is recorded by Paul in Ephesians 4:11-16 where he declares the Spirit gave to some men the office of apostles, some he gave prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and some teachers and note – they were all men! Their qualifications are found in I Timothy 3:1-7, Titus 1:6-9 and furthermore these five offices, according to Ephesians 4:12, is the only thing that can perfect the church here at the endtime!

PROPHET OFFICE NOT SAME

Back to the thought, does merely prophesying declare a man to be in the office of a prophet? NOT NECESSARILY! There is a vast difference between the office of a prophet in the Old Testament and one who merely fills a New Testament office of prophet. No where in the Book of Acts was any of these people, who merely prophesied, ever referred to as New Testament prophets! Paul told the Corinthian Church they could all prophesy, one by one, as shown under the gift of Prophecy, I Corinthians 14:31. No, a gift of prophecy, I Corinthians 12:10, does not merely prophesy concerning things in the distant future. Nowhere recorded in the Book of Acts did any of those men referred to as New Testament prophets such as Agabus (Acts 11:27-28) Barnabas, Simion, Lucius, Manaen, Judas, and Silas (Acts 15:32) prophesy far reaching events to transpire in the future.

NOT FAR REACHING

Agabus came to Antioch and through the gift of prophecy, which did not reach out too far into the future tense when he signified by the Spirit there was going to come a great drought into the land, which you will notice was fulfilled in the days of Claudius Caesar, Acts 11:28. This event transpired not too many months or years out into the future. As we stated, the office of the New Testament prophet was no where near the caliber as was the office of that Old Testament prophet. Therefore, don’t confuse the Old Testament prophet office with that fivefold ministry office of a New Testament prophet. (Ephesians 4:11) The only outstanding marvelous ministry we note in the New Testament prophet was his gift or ability to prophesy, however, recall the record shows his prophecies did not have that far reaching future tense as was quite common within the ministry of the Old Testament prophets! Therefore, none of these men referred to as New Testament prophets prophesied of things centuries in advance. John the Revelator, the last of the original apostles marooned on Patmos, through visions was given a higher degree of prophecy, (seeing the distant future) although even with John the Revelator he did not receive those far reaching future tense events through the Word of Prophecy! His prophecy concerning the distant future was shown to him through a VISION. Prophecy therefore may come through three routes: VISIONS, DREAMS OR EXPRESSION OF THE WORD OF PROPHECY. Naturally whichever way prophecy comes, in the final analysis, it is going to come through the word being expressed, either spoken prophetically or written, isn’t it? If it is a vision or dream showing something is going to happen, in order for others to understand, it would have to be in the expression of words. If what was shown was not a vision or dream and it is to be catalogued under the spirit of prophecy, it has to be an expression of word in an understandable language to the hearer. The spoken word of prophecy is where God simply takes over the mentality of the person’s thinking and inspires that person to speak the thoughts of God, and in so doing we associate it with the gift of prophecy, one of the THINGS OF CHRIST which was seen continually in the ministry of the Lord Jesus, and has now been placed within the mystical body of Christ by the same Spirit. However with Christ, prophecy was not some special anointing, His words were simply prophecy. See Matthew 24:1-51 for example.

GENERALLY NOT FAR REACHING

The gift of prophecy placed within the body is usually a prophetic utterance dealing within a present tense situation which can easily reach back into the past as well as reach somewhere into the very near future of time (if God so chooses), reaching perhaps not more than 5 to 6 years in advance. Although in certain isolated instances I have heard of God speaking in somewhat a more distant future tense than what the mere word of Prophecy usually presents. Usually when God does that it is being done in relationship to a particular group of people. I will illustrate. I once read an account concerning the European Armenians back before the turn of the century being mightily blessed of God in an outpouring of the Holy Ghost in their part of the world. God spoke through prophecy telling these people to prepare to flee to another land. Eventually through a period of years they wound up in America and by wagon train they traveled across this country and was in California when the Holy Ghost fell in 1903. Here was prophecy spoken somewhat in advance covering a span of time, though not a half century seeing all the prophecy transpired in a generation of time, yet it was spoken a number of years in advance and was on behalf of a certain people.

JUDGING PROPHECY

Often I have heard it said, prophecy should be judged. I agree! So does Paul in I Corinthians 14:29, yet beloved there is only one way you can judge prophecy and that is by the Holy Scriptures, not by how you feel or what you think about it! To some people if they hear someone prophesy a prophecy which the scripture declares is for edification, exhortation and comfort, I Corinthians 14:3, and if that prophecy didn’t say something was going to happen tomorrow or in three months or next year (something future tense), they would declare that was not prophecy, seeing their idea of prophecy involved only what to be aware of tomorrow, etc. Prophecy can and will on certain occasions do just exactly that, however, don’t you limit prophecy to only that!

NOT ALL SPOKEN IN FUTURE TENSE

Are you aware the biggest percentage of the prophetic writings of Isaiah, Jeremiah and men of that caliber when prophesying did not speak concerning the future whatsoever! True, many of their prophecies dealt with the present tense rebuking the children of Israel and reached only into the past tense bringing out certain examples showing the goodness of God toward them. Concerning prophecy in the Old Testament we note the old prophets lived in an hour when certain spiritual conditions had developed in Israel, hence when the prophet wrote or stood to prophesy there was a present tense rebuke and this present tense rebuke did not dip into the far future! No, it was often rebuking a present tense situation, although God often speaking of the present tense hour, would reach into the past tense saying, did not I bring your fathers out of the land of Egypt and blessed them and did thus and thus….

PROPHECY CAN

Therefore beloved, that is why prophecy in the body of Christ can: (1) carry a rebuking thought from God or (2) can bring forth words of edification, comfort and exhortation seen in I Corinthians 14:3, or (3) prophecy can reach those high peaks wherein that gift reaches out into the future and pulls the future into the present hour concerning certain things for people to be watching for in days ahead.

NO. 7 – DISCERNING OF SPIRITS

To another by the same Spirit is given the DISCERNING OF SPIRITS. That gift is the ability to know whether or not an individual speaks or is motivated under the anointing of the true spirit or the false spirit. As I explained earlier under the Word of Knowledge, many people thought while watching Bro. Branham’s ministry telling the people they had certain diseases or came from certain places as he through the Spirit was seeking to build the faith in the believer – all this they associate with discernment. In some far flung identification you might consider it all in a category like that, however, to me that was not the discerning of spirits of which Paul is referring to here. Instead that was the gift of the Word of Knowledge operating through the prophet, and to me that is the highest demonstration of the operation of God we have in the entire Bible. For a prophet such as Elisha to sit in his room and instruct a man called Naaman, whom he had never seen, to go down to the old muddy Jordan River and dip 7 times and he would be healed, such a thing for a man to do in his own carnal thinking would be foolish. Elisha did not sit in a little room and cook up such an idea. The story is recorded in II Kings 5:1-27, yet when Naaman finally obeyed what the prophet said, he was healed. I want you to know, the prophet did not even look at that big shot. Today he would be considered most unsociable and many preachers of today would jump over backwards to have the privilege of working with such a guest personality as General Naaman. Jordan may have been a dirty river, nevertheless, it was the pride of Israel. Naaman naturally would rather have gone to a much cleaner river in Syria to bathe himself and he was infuriated by what the prophet said. I say all this to show you how much God thought of this great personality coming to meet HIS PERSONALITY.

PERSONALITIES IN EARLY CHURCH

We are living in an hour when especially within this glossolalia, charismatic move you are seeing all kinds of great worldly personalities linking up with ministers of this hour. It is strange how the religious world flocks after a worldly personality of stage, screen or television simply because they testify to some kind of glossolalia experience! We are living in a day unless you are some kind of converted snake in the grass you don’t have any influence on people. You have to be some crook or low-down scum of the earth and suddenly make a change in your ways and when you do, the whole world runs after you like a little puppy dog doing tricks. May I say, it wasn’t so in the beginning! Great personalities of that hour had little to do with the true church and shocking as it may sound, if they were converted they were converted to TRUTH. The Holy Ghost they received in that hour showed them WATER BAPTISM IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST for the remission of sins and led them on into deeper truths. No, it didn’t allow them to continue to live in sin or be worldly, living and looking like the world! You just don’t see those renown personalities being used in the scripture!

RELIGIOUS WORLD DECEIVED

The prophet Elisha wouldn’t even come out and talk to his great visiting personality even though he had brought all kind of wealth to reward him for his healing. Big personalities in the days of the scriptures, when converted, were not pushed out in front but had to sit in the services with the rest of the congregation. Not so in this hour, when the religious world cares nothing about the Truth, all they are interested in is hearing about some of these big personality who got converted. Yet if God were to reveal truth to the man and he walked in it and dared testify to it they would say, throw that poor misled devil out! No beloved, this religious world is deceived! It is not truth they are looking for, it is only an escape route out of hell for which they are searching!

NO ESCAPE WITHOUT TRUTH

However, I am afraid without the truth of His Word there won’t be much of an escape route for them. HEAR ME! The revelated Word of God is the only acceptable escape route! Our generation is headed rapidly into the wrath and destruction of God, therefore, some seek an escape route through dope, others try a route through immorality, while some say let us try it religiously, only don’t get too involved. Old Babylon therefore presents every kind of door of teaching imaginable and in the end of their analysis of the interpretation of Christ’s escape route is that you can believe anything you want to just as long as you believe in Jesus! ACCORDING TO THIS BIBLE THAT IS NOT TRUE! There is truth in this book you must identify yourself with and embrace, and furthermore, this Bible informs us of the deceiving hour in which we live and declared an hour of even greater deception where the spirit of deception or seducing spirits would be so close to the real truth that it would deceive even the very elect if possible! But remember beloved, if the grace of God has saved you He won’t stop until He brings you to the full knowledge of Truth!

DISCERNMENT IN CHRIST

Therefore, if ever there was a gift needed to operate within the body of Christ, truly it is this gift of discerning of Spirits. There are numbers of instances where this gift operated in Christ to discern Spirits, one particular incident in the life of Christ (Matthew 16:23). Christ told His disciples He would have to go to the cross. Peter, before being converted, (Luke 22:32), declared Lord, be it far from thee, you don’t have to go to the cross. And Jesus looked at Peter with discernment and said GET THEE BEHIND ME SATAN, THE THINGS YOU SPEAK ARE NOT THE THINGS OF GOD. Jesus wasn’t calling Peter a devil, yet He was speaking to the spirit influencing Peter to have to look at what is going on under the cloak of Christianity to discern most of it is of the devil for the purpose of deceiving. The devil in the honky tonk, beer joint, etc., isn’t going to deceive you. His attempt to deceive you will come religiously, therefore, we need the grace of God in this respect to be able to look at what is going on under the cloak of religion and identify it as to whether it is motived by the right or wrong spirit.

DISCERNMENT IN PAUL

When the woman who followed Paul and Silas for so many days continued crying out, these are the servants of the most high God who have come to tell us the words of life (Acts 16:18), the first few days Paul didn’t say anything. After all, what she was saying was Truth, however beloved, she was motivated by the wrong spirit! About the third day the same thing happened and no doubt the Apostle Paul said, somehow that just doesn’t have the right ring to it! I must say today there is an awful lot of things going on in certain circles of Christianity dealing with this high pressure personality evangelism that just doesn’t have the right ring to it, yet sooner or later if this thing is of God (which I doubt) it must come to the whole Truth of the Word. As they say in the court room, do you solemnly declare that what you are about to say is the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth. To this deceived religious world who claims Christ, I would like to say, do you confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord and truly the Saviour of your soul and do you solemnly declare you will submit yourself to the understanding of His whole Word of Truth! Because if you won’t it could be because some old religious seducing spirit has gotten hold of you and allows you to hear just barely enough of the bible to deceive you and never allow you to walk on in the Word of Truth!

What the woman is saying is Truth, we are man of God and we have come with a truth yet somehow it doesn’t carry the right ring! The Spirit of Discernment came upon Paul and he declared, no wonder it didn’t sound right, it sounds religious enough but it is motivated by the spirit of the devil! Come out of her you devil in the name of Jesus Christ and from that time the evil spirit which troubled the girl departed. What let Paul know the girl operated under the wrong spirit even though what she said was truth was that DISCERNING OF SPIRITS Christ placed in the body whereby the church would not be deceived by spirits – that they might know the working of the true Spirit from the false when it speaks, I John 4:1. We most assuredly need that gift to operate in its fullest capacity in this hour!

We are down to our final two spiritual gifts or THINGS OF CHRIST in the body and remember, we are not discussing any particular operation of them seeing they operate different through different vessels of clay. Our purpose is to seek only their identity and declare to all God set these nine gifts in His body on earth and nowhere has He ever removed them from His true body. No not even in the darkest hours within church history when it appears they ceased to operate, because church history proves that even through the Dark Ages in certain scattered isolated areas of Europe there would be a few scattered remnants of people who simply could not tolerate the present religious evils of their hour, and usually it was under such dire circumstances of oppression and severe hardships of pressure that drove these scattered remnants to seek God for survival and existence, in that hour certain spiritual gifts would be moved to operate, to lead and encourage these people. And what about this hour or restoration in these last days, if the church is to be restored back to her original apostolic teaching she must also be restored back to that same degree and identity of having all these gift ministries operating through her as she closes out the present age, ready to leave for glory.

NO. 8 – DIFFERENT KINDS OF TONGUES

To another DIVERS KINDS OF TONGUES. What does the Apostle mean? He is saying to another different kind of languages of tongues are given. In other words, we would say a gift of speaking in other languages is in certain people, just as other gifts which Paul declares in I Corinthians 12:27-31, in this many membered body of Christ also. And God set some (not all) in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, gifts of healing, helps, government and last of all he mentions diversities of tongues. Then Paul, as he was noted for doing, answered a question by asking a question. Watch Paul ask this question, Are all who are set in the body of Christ apostles, are all prophets, teachers or workers of miracles; do all have the gift of healing, do all speak with tongues, do all interpret? THE ANSWER TO EACH QUESTION IS NO! Because if you will note from verse 7-11, Paul is constantly showing that the same Spirit of God is dividing the THINGS OF CHRIST as He sees fit, or as it pleases Him to place them throughout the body. He therefore gave to one, one thing and to another He gave something else and to another He gave still another gift and so on. When did the Spirit give this believer his portion of the THINGS OF CHRIST, when he received that portion of His Spirit that completed his new birth and he was added to the mystical body of Christ.

And to another the Spirit of God gives divers Kinds of Tongues. On one occasion you may hear the individual speaking and it will sound like one language and the speaking may sound as if it remains in that language for a while, and then you will notice a slight change in their vocabulary of tongues. Here I want to pause and say, tongues are not prophecy, although tongues are a manifestation of the power of God placed in the mystical body of Christ to represent that part of Christ which was 1st here in the corporeal body walking on earth.

3 OCCASIONS CHRIST SPOKE IN TONGUES

When Christ was on earth we have a record of 3 different times He spoke in other languages. Mark 7:34, was one event where He spoke in tongues praying for a deaf and dumb person. Mark 5:40-41 is another time He spoke in tongues raising a dead girl, and the third time was in Matthew 27:46, while hanging on the cross. Remember Christ had within Him the THINGS OF GOD, the Father, and it was the operation of the Spirit that would take those THINGS OF CHRIST which had been manifested through His corporeal body and later place them all in the mystical body of Christ.

TONGUES A SIGN

Therefore, the GIFT OF TONGUES or languages is in the church. They are not necessarily for the edification of the believer, on the contrary, the gift of tongues is the one gift which portrays a sign among the body of Christ not toward believers, but toward that of the unbeliever, I Corinthians 14:22! Beloved, just the operation of the gift of tongues alone spoken of in a congregation (without interpretation) does not edify the believer at all. Furthermore, Paul declared if there is no interpreter in the congregation, keep silent.

TONGUES IN PRIVATE PRAYER

Although, may I say, when a person is in his prayer closet praying in the Spirit as shown in I Corinthians 14:2, many times revelated believers pray in languages which they themselves do not understand. It is an anointing of the Spirit to the person in secret prayer and it builds up their own spirit and in this kind of praying, there is edification to the believer, yet in a congregation it would be of no edification, and unless interpreters are present this should not be used, I Corinthians 14:27-28. Tongues is placed in the body of Christ so it can be manifested to the unbeliever as he hears. Verse 22, the case in the early church the unbeliever would no doubt be associated enough with tongues to know the individual speaking in tongues or languages did not know other languages, and he will wonder why that person could speak in another tongue. Tongues is a sign to unbelievers, not believers. How often do we hear people say, if I don’t hear someone speak in tongues I don’t believe they have the Holy Ghost. YOU ARE AN UNBELIEVER because Paul said tongues is not for the benefit of believers but for unbelievers! Think about it and prayerfully read verse 22 again. It is only when tongues is accompanied with the sister gift of interpretation that it can benefit the congregation, because as we shall later see the gift of interpretation places the unknown language in the language of the listener whereby they may rejoice over what was uttered in the other language.

The gift of tongues was placed in the body as a sign to the unbeliever! However I would say the gift of tongues, even though it is accompanied with interpretation, is not a gift that is ever going to take the place of the Word of Knowledge. While it is true, when the interpretation of tongues is declared, often times details about a certain condition are brought into the open which brings about the same understanding in pointing to a future condition as would the Word of Knowledge. Nevertheless remember, it can never take the place of the Word of Knowledge, even though at times it brings about an understanding that the Word of Knowledge alone would produce. No, the gift of tongues with interpretation can never take the place or do away with any other spiritual gift, because God wants all of these gifts kept within His mystical body and seeing there is difference of operation in different vessels, I am not telling you how any of them operate other than say, let us get acquainted with all of them and be able to recognize their separate functions as they are going to definitely be in operation within the endtime church! Tongues as languages are expressions of the power of God through individual believers which enables them to speak in other dialects as that ability was in the corporeal body of Christ.

NO. 9 – INTERPRETATION OF TONGUES

Now to the last of the nine gifts or THINGS OF CHRIST placed in His mystical body by the Holy Spirit and that is to another person is given the INTERPRETATION OF TONGUES. Remember according to verse 11, that all these gifts differ and have different operations, although they are all placed in the body of Christ and distributed by that self-same Spirit as it pleases Him. Paul began in verse 4 declaring, there are diversities of gifts but the same Spirit, and in verse 11 He winds up this part of this subject by saying, the self-same Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will. See beloved, that takes this out of our hands. It is the work of the Spirit who divides to every man severally as He will. That is why I mentioned early in the lesson when Paul spoke concerning the distribution of the gifts he used the phrase, THE SAME SPIRIT, then when he left that thought and came to the administration of various functions of all these gifts, he refers to these as being under the administration by THE SAME LORD, shown as Lord, the Spirit is the headship and through the anointing of that leadership He works in the believer. Yes, He is master of it in every operation, and when any of the gifts have completely fulfilled its purpose in its operation it is then the term THE SAME GOD is applied in verse 6. The Word GOD means an object of worship and shows the highest order of admiration, praise and worship that can be attributed to the Spirit whereby in the final analysis, or in the end, it is God who is glorified for what was accomplished. Yet remember SPIRIT, LORD AND GOD are all one and the self-same object of worship and Jesus is His name!

VARIOUS VIEWS

Now to the GIFT OF INTERPRETATION, different people seem to hold various views as to what interpretation is. Some declare the interpreter knows in advance what he is to say, while others will declare he doesn’t. Both can be right seeing the Bible declares there are differences of operations in these gifts. A person knowing in advance the words of interpretation could be every bit as true as the one who doesn’t, depending on the manner the Spirit chooses to operate through the person. However, don’t go to seed on that! If there are diversities of tongues then the gift of interpretation has to be in like manner also! That is, as God has spoken through a language, He knows what He said and since the Holy Ghost spoke it the Holy Ghost may interpret it anyway He sees fit. Is not God the author of every language?

WITH TONGUES CAME UNDERSTANDING

Think back a bit before the tower of Babel in Genesis 11:1, everyone spoke the same language and to halt the erecting of the tower they had intended to stretch into heaven to protect them from a flood, which God declared would never again destroy all mankind, He simply gave them different languages. However don’t forget, as God confused the languages that night He also had to give understanding of these languages at the same time. What a terrible situation this would have been had a wife, husband and children all in one family gone to bed speaking another and could not understand each other. They wouldn’t have even known what was going on in their own families. You see, it is one thing to say He changed their languages, which was true, but I say He had to add some understanding to their own tongue also. I don’t believe God broke up any homes; He broke up their languages because they were all trying to settle in one geographical area in the land of Shinar. Earlier God had told Noah to go out into the earth and re-populate it, but here several generations later they wanted to stop and build a city and tower that would reach into heaven and build a name for themselves, lest they be scattered abroad upon the face of the earth. See, they didn’t want to fulfill God’s commission, therefore by changing their language they were scattered abroad throughout the earth, seeing they could not understand each other.

INTERPRETATION GIFT DIFFERS

Therefore, when God came down in the power of the Holy Ghost in the early church and manifested tongues, He also brought the gift of interpretation to go along with the tongue gift. Hence, it is not necessary that the person interpreting have foreknowledge of what is to be said in order to interpret the tongues. Some people interpret tongues with eyes closed, seeing the words before them, while others hear a voice saying those words and they repeat them. Some say just a few words are in their mind and when they speak those words more flows into their mind and they continue to speak. All these methods stem from the fact there are diversities of operation. It is all God’s way of giving the understanding of what was said in tongues.

GIFTS NOT REMOVED

Furthermore, when Paul declared in I Corinthians 13:8, that tongues shall cease and prophecies shall fail, he didn’t mean they would cease out of the body of Christ! By no means, they are the THINGS OF CHRIST which are in His Spirit distributed into His mystical body, thus to say the THINGS OF CHRIST would cease is the same as to say Christ would cease to exist in His body! No, it simply means they shall cease to fulfill the purpose they were placed in the body for in the first place, not that they would not still be in the church! He also declared knowledge in the Bride of Christ would vanish away! Are we to interpret this to mean there is no knowledge? Amazing how people can go to seed on certain points! Prophecy and the Gift of Interpretation is associated together and in operation often produces the same effect of edification and understanding to the congregation, I Corinthians 14:5, just as knowledge and wisdom are two parallel gifts which work and are associated together operated by the Holy Ghost as they are ministered to the person or persons, often times they accomplish similar edification and understanding.

Beloved, nobody can give you a gift! It is God who does the distributing of the things He has taken from the corporeal body of Christ and placed in His mystical body on earth to represent Christ. Therefore, to have a gift you must first have the baptism of the Holy Ghost, then it is up to us to walk humbly, become more sensitive to the Spirit of God and become a praying person that God in His own way might lead and direct us through these gifts He has chosen and ordained to guide His mystical body through the earth wherein they may, in turn, represent Christ in the earth.

Rebuilding The Temple

INTRODUCTION:

 

WHAT ASTOUNDING CLUE, REVEALED IN REVELATION 11:2, DEALING WITH A PRECISE, ALLOTTED 42 MONTHS PERIOD, INDICATES WHEN ISRAEL’S 3RD TEMPLE SHOULD BE ERECTED? FURTHERMORE, WHAT DID GOD REVEAL THROUGH ZECHARIAH & HAGGAI, HIS TWO (2ND) TEMPLE RESTORATION PROPHETS IN 512 B.C. CONCERNING A LATTER HOUSE AS WELL AS TWO MIGHTY PROPHETS BEING ON THE SCENE WHEN ISRAEL REBUILDS HER TEMPLE? WHY WERE THESE TWO PROPHETS SINGLED OUT TO REVEAL SUCH AN ASTOUNDING PROPHECY CONCERNING A 3RD HOUSE?

 

Contents

PART 1 – THE PALACE OF DEITY

 

Each day Gentiles the world over, visit the old Solomon temple grounds in Jerusalem located in the very center of the earth and spread over the sacred historical Mt. Moriah, famed for its role in the day of Abraham where the patriarch was ready to sacrifice his only son to the glory of Almighty God. Genesis 22:2, and where, according to II Chronicles 3:1, the first temple stood, completed in the year 960 B.C. by King Solomon.

 

WHAT IS A TEMPLE?

 

First, what is a temple? It is a building set apart for the worship of a deity. With the rebuilding of the temple as shown in Revelation 11:1-2, sometime shortly before the ushering in of the millennium, Israel will have seen three separate temples built at Jerusalem, each bearing the name of the temple as well as all three being built upon the same site, along the same general pattern! The Hebrew term for temple, hekal, is an old Akkadian word signifying palace, a large building frequently joined with Jehovah and denoting THE PALACE OF DEITY! The Greek term for temple is naos (shrine) and hieron (a sacred place).

 

MOUNTAIN PEAK IS SACRED ROCK

 

Today all that appears visible standing above ground on the holy spot of Jerusalem which has any connection with the original Solomon temple, destroyed by the Babylonians in 587 B.C., is the sacred rock altar used in Israel’s animal sacrifice which actually is not simply a rock sitting on top of the ground some 5½ ft. high, but instead is the top of a mountain peak, showing this stationary rock can never be moved! Even though two Jewish temples have been destroyed on this 31 acre site, spread out over Mt. Moriah, nevertheless for over 2,550 years this unmoveable rock has remained as it is throughout some 23 separate times Jerusalem has changed Gentile hands, from the beginning of the day of the Gentiles in 587 B.C., when Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem and the temple, carrying away the last of the people into captivity and Jerusalem lay in total ruin and waste 70 years.

 

7TH CENTURY DOME OF THE ROCK

 

Today, high above this protruding mountain peak or sacred rock looms the dome of the Mosque of Omar, better known as THE DOME OF THE ROCK. When Arabs captured the city of Jerusalem and Palestine, the Arab or Moslem leader Calip Omar first built a temporary house of Moslem worship in the temple area. Then in 691 A.D., some 50 years later, the present Dome of the Rock was built on the site of the old Solomon temple grounds and has stood since that day bearing the name of Omar, although during this period of time it has undergone many changes.

 

WESTERN WALL DATES BACK TO 2ND TEMPLE

 

In passing, we might also mention something else connected with the old temple grounds which is the Western Wall surrounding the court area and the rock (or mountain peak), this wall better known as the Wailing Wall today is Israel’s holiest shrine, and to the Jewish world as well. The wall itself is a section of the defense rampart (or court wall) which encircles the temple court in ancient times. The rows of large stones date from the 2nd temple. However, over the course of centuries, debris of successive wars and destruction was thrown here, thus resulting in a great part (or 21 layers) of the wall through time, being covered with soil, in so much that the large portion of the wall itself (21 layers) is hidden beneath ground level. The lower part of the Western or Wailing Wall actually dates back to the time of Solomon’s temple.

 

Capturing the old city of Jerusalem in 1967 brought the control of all Jerusalem into Israeli hands for the first time in 2,554 years! The meeting at the Wailing Wall June 7, 1967, by various Israeli forces who participated in the capture of the Old City was the climax of the 6 day war. Immediately following the 6 day war the large square in front of the wall was cleared of shabby shacks and poor houses cluttering the area. Today the wall is the most hallowed site of all Judaism. Official mass ceremonies are held here, as well as young recruits for the Israeli army take their oath here. Pilgrimages to the Wailing Wall or Western Wall are made, seeing this is all they have to remind them of the old temple and has been a featured sight in Jewish life for many generations. The Jews believe the divine presence of God rests eternally upon this Wailing Wall and on the eve of Tisha be-Av, legend declares that in the dead of night a white dove, the divine presence, appears and coos sadly with the mourners. At night the stones are covered with drops of dew, which tradition declares to be the tears the Wailing Wall sheds while weeping with all Israel.

 

For a number of years archeological expeditions have been carried out along the southern wall of the temple site. Many remains of the Herodian period are being uncovered, as well as the reins of a Moslem structure (dating back to the 7th and 8th Century.) A large stone engraved with a Hebrew inscription carrying the words of Isaiah’s prophecy, “And when ye see this your heart shall rejoice and your bones shall flourish like young grass.” (Isaiah 66:14)

 

DAILY ALTAR SACRIFICE CEASES 70 A.D.

 

Titus surrounded Jerusalem in April of 70 A.D., and a month later captured half the city, where at this time the daily sacrifice ceased upon the holy sacred rock altar and has not been in use by an Israeli priest since that hour. In August of 70 A.D., the second temple went up in flames and after 143 days of siege, on September 4, the Holy City fell with the perishing of some 1,000,000. However, with all that perished the one thing that did not perish in the siege or could not be torn down was that Wailing (Western) Wall, but was left to stand. After the Roman siege, the old, bedraggled, the sick and crippled, which had been left to mourn the plight of the city, those who were in no condition to be chained and hauled away and sold throughout the Roman Empire, were the poor souls left to throw themselves against the only visible thing that could remind them of the glory of God and the magnificent temple and there wail, mourn and cry excessively over the ruins of the city and over the holy temple, their pride and joy. No doubt asking themselves certain heart searching questions, WHY HAS OUR GOD LEFT US? LOOK WHAT HE HAS DONE TO US! WHY HAS HE ALLOWED THIS TO HAPPEN TO OUR MAGNIFICENT TEMPLE? And no doubt they mourn the loss of the most beautiful building throughout the Roman Empire, the holy temple. This beautiful, magnificent, enlarged, elevated temple which had only finished receiving its complete face lifting in 64 A.D., six years before Titus destroyed it, was first built by the exiled Jews returning from Babylon as a simple, plain, modest structure and remained so for 500 years before Herod the Great began work on it. (19 B.C.)

 

CYRUS ORDERS 2ND TEMPLE BUILT

 

Cyrus the Great, who gained control of Babylon in 539 B.C., gave a proclamation permitting the captured people of Judah who had been deported by Nebuchadnezzar to return to Palestine and rebuild the temple of God, II Chronicles 36:22-23, Ezra 1:1-4. Only this temple that was rebuilt was by no means an extravagant, luxurious, decorated temple as was Solomon’s, who spent 7 years in building and decorating the first temple. No, these returning Jews simply did not have that kind of money or assistance to build such a fabulous temple, seeing the only money they had was donated from the treasury of Cyrus the Great. The returning Jews were given vessels of silver and gold as well as animals and precious things (Ezra 1:6). Cyrus even returned to them the holy vessels taken from the Solomon temple by Nebuchadnezzar 70 years earlier, (Ezra 1:7-8). However, the Jews could only afford to build a plain, modest temple which stood for some 500 years unto the time of Herod the Great, who won the favor of the Roman Emperor Caesar Augustus in 37 B.C., and was awarded the crown of Judea to serve as king over that territory.

 

HEROD REMODELS 2ND TEMPLE

 

Herod sought desperately to win the confidence of his people by giving royal charity in the time of famine and other means, but all in vain! The people of Judea deplored him, seeing he only used the throne of David as an usurper. The main reason Herod was disliked as King was the fact the Herodians were not of Jewish stock, instead descendants of Esau, the brother of Jacob. Their second reason for disliking Herod was he turned to the Romans for support and seemingly he could not understand nor get along with his subject people.

 

However, there was one good point in Herod’s favor which finally won the approval of the Jew and that was his extravagant taste in architecture. This article is not concerned with Herod’s rebuilding such cities as Samaria nor his own magnificent Herodian palace, but the fact Herod in 19 B.C., began an extensive long range project on the modest temple which actually was not totally completed until six brief years before the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. Yes, the thing Herod did was take the plain, modest temple which had been erected by the returning Jews from Babylon, some 500 years earlier, and enlarge, elevate and beautify it beyond words.

 

Since we are discussing what the Jews are wailing over since 70 A.D., and because continually throughout the gospel writings we hear much concerning the extravagant beauty of the Herodian temple which John 2:20 described as having already required 46 years in the building program, yet wasn’t completely finished until 64 A.D., briefly before the destruction by the Romans. Although the main part of the temple, beginning in 19 B.C., only required 18 months to complete, yet the final touches were still being added even in the days of Christ and was not totally completed until 64 A.D.

 

In order not to offend the sensitive feelings of the Jews and to win their favor, Herod, who wanted to repair, rebuild and glorify the present modest temple, chose 1,000 priests, many of whom were trained to be stone cutters and carpenters, to enlarge and beautify the temple whereby no profane hands would have touched the shrine of the inside of the temple. Herod, with a solemn promise not to disturb their present worship in any manner, began his extravagant building program on the temple. Although it occupied the same ground plan as that of its predecessor, Herod did increase its elevation by 100 cubits and Josephus tells us it was constructed of glistening white marble stone.

 

HEROD’S REMODELING, NOT ANOTHER TEMPLE

 

No, by no means can Herod’s temple be looked upon as a third temple, because according to Herod’s own words his plans called only for beautifying and enlarging the present temple. The temple and its courts repaired and redecorated by Herod, this vain extravagant man, Josephus said, occupied an area of one stadium of 500 cubits (Talmud) which was arranged in terrace form, one court being higher than the other with the temple itself the highest of all, whereby it could easily be seen from any part of the city thus presenting a very impressive appearance, Mark 13:2-3.

 

TEMPLE PLACED ON HIGHEST TERRACE

 

We can by no means linger long upon the extravagant building program of Herod who sought to win favor with the Jews as he beautifies their 2nd temple other than to say, the temple itself after his elevation program was finished, stood much higher than even the court of the priests and the altar required a flight of 12 steps to reach the temple itself! According to Josephus, the Jewish historian, the new foundations were of massive blocks of white marble, richly ornamented with gold both inside and out. Some of these stones were 45 cubits long, 6 broad and 5 high. Yes, truly Herod, this vain man, a builder of many cities and heathen temples, glorified this sacred mountain peak of Moriah beyond measure! The ancient men of Israel said, he who has not seen the building of Herod has never seen a handsome building in his life. Is there any wonder that on several occasions the disciples of Christ approached Him discussing the beauty of the temple, only to hear Jesus say in Matthew 24:2, “Verily I say unto you, the time will come when there shall not be left here one stone upon another.” (Speaking of the hour Titus in 70 A.D., would destroy this magnificent structure).

 

The grandeur of the building consisting of gleaming white marble was on the eastern side covered with plates of gold which reflected the rays of the rising sun. This area, twice as large as that of Zerubbabel’s temple, was 26 acres in size and surrounded by a high wall. Around the outside of the walls ran porches, the finest one being on the south side called the Royal Porch, which had four rows of dazzling white marble columns of Corinthian style, or 162 columns in all. The eastern porch was called Solomon’s, John 10:23, Acts 3:11, 5:12. One thing must be mentioned which was added to Herod’s temple, not applicable to the other temple was the various fortresses located upon the walls to protect the magnificent temple area from the enemy. Around the temple itself was the court of the priest where stood the rock altar of burnt offerings (which stood in front of the temple) and the laver which was accessible to men worshipers only. Above the entrance of one of the porches, Herod placed a golden eagle, an unclean bird which was the Roman emblem and was most distasteful to the Jew. However, shortly before his death it was destroyed.

 

Beloved, had Herod not taken it upon himself to remodel and beautify Zerubbabel’s temple, this plain, modest temple building would have been standing in the day of Christ, and the Jews would not have bragged and been filled with such pride concerning its beauty. Memories of its towering, glistening beauty tortured and plagued that Jew’s pride as they mourned the loss of such a magnificent temple, now laying in utter ruin! Yes, Jews left behind after 70 A.D., came to the Western Wall or Wailing Wall (the only thing left standing on the location) to mourn their loss of both temple and city! Undoubtedly Herod’s temple, as it was now called, was the most extravagant building in wealth of the entire Middle East and Europe as well seeing Athens nor Rome, two contemporary cities of that period, had nothing to offer in comparison to this second temple once it was redecorated, elevated and beautified through Herod’s architectural genius. More than once Christ’s own disciples showed their spellboundness toward its magnificent beauty and wealth only to hear the Master’s words ringing back, every stone upon another shall be torn down!

 

WALL BLOCKS VIEW – NOT PART OF TEMPLE

 

In the light concerning the prophecy of Christ (Matthew 24:2) prophesying of every stone being torn down within the temple itself, Gentiles whose frame of thinking has been geared to understand that the Wailing Wall or Western Wall is a part of the temple itself (which is not true), wonder why the Wailing Wall stands since Christ prophesied that no stone would be standing? It must be understood that the Western Wall is by no means a part of the old temple building itself, instead is only a portion of the old court wall which surrounded the temple area to keep out heathen Gentiles from observing the Jews worshiping their God around their altar of sacrifice. The temple, as you recall, was only the building divided into two rooms, while the court walls were something entirely separate from the building proper enclosing the vast 31 acre court area where the temple stood. The wall served much the same purpose as would a palace fence built around a kings palace enclosing all the palace environment such as servant quarters, etc.

 

ALTAR STANDS IN FRONT

 

Directly in front of the temple stood the altar of sacrifice which was the first thing seen as one entered the Eastern or King’s Gate. In Solomon’s day this King’s Gate, Eastern Gate or gate called Beautiful which now for hundreds of years had been sealed by the Moslem’s, led out of the temple area down the gradual sloping valley of Jehosophat (sometimes called Valley of Kidron) which faces the Mt. Of Olives, a distance of approximately ¾ mile. The road leading from the little village of Bethany which lays several miles off the Eastern slope of the Mt. Of Olives ran through Bethany, over the Mt. Of Olives down the sloping valley of Jehosophat, ascended up the gradual slope of Jehosophat straight through the Eastern Gate on to the temple grounds itself.

 

ARCHED BRIDGE SPANS VALLEY

 

However, because of numerous ancient architectural drawings concerning the period of Solomon, it is believed he erected a huge arch bridge from the King’s Gate which crossed above the Valley of Jehosophat bringing the flow of traffic directly from the Mt. Of Olives straight on to the arched bridge, through the Eastern Gate on to the temple area. While crossing the bridge, the traffic looked directly through the Eastern Gate to the temple grounds and the first thing the visitors eyes fell upon was that great rock altar, of animal sacrifice, standing in front of the temple.

 

HISTORY OF MT. MORIAH

 

Therefore, we recognize the fact that this altar of sacrifice is the top of Mt. Moriah (which the Jews refer also to as the stone of foundation) and the fact in Solomon’s day the temple grounds, along with the temple, the Eastern Gate and altar were all on eye level as one entered the Eastern Gate. What a tremendous amount of work must have been involved in bringing all this ground on to an eye level with the Kings Gate! The altar of sacrifice, which not only the Jew believed to be the center of the earth as well as the very spot Abraham offered Isaac, but also according to them the word Moriah, which is derived from Mora (Hebrew) means awe, and from that mountain, they feel, went forth the fear of the Lord to all mankind. Another Jewish word in connection with Moriah may be derived from Orah, meaning light, Therefore, when the Almighty commanded, let there be light, the Jews believe it was from that mountain light first shown forth to all mankind. To the Jew Mt. Moriah has quite a history!

 

MELCHISEDEC, HIGH PRIEST AND KING OF SALEM

 

Jerusalem, the city where the holy temple or palace of God was to be located, came first into the Bible spotlight around 1900 B.C., when Abraham, having returned from a victorious battle with much spoil, met Melchisedec, King of Salem, who brought forth bread and wine and was the priest of the most high God, to whom Abraham gave his tithe and he blessed Abraham. Genesis 14:17-20, Hebrews 7:1-4, sheds more light on the picture concerning this high priest of Salem named Melchisedec calling him king of righteousness, King of Salem and king of peace who had neither father nor mother, without descent (Melchisedec was none other than God in a theophany form who received Abraham’s tithe and gave him communion.)

 

HOLY CITY JERUSALEM

 

The city of Jerusalem, which is located high up in a mountain chain called Mt. Zion, is some 2,700 feet above sea level. After a fortress to the Jebusites fell into the hands of David who captured the mountain area around 1101 B.C. He made this area to be his capitol of Israel calling it Zion and the city was held exclusively by David and his successors for 400 years, at which time the period known as “the day of the gentiles” began once Nebuchadnezzar, in 587 B.C., became the first gentile king, overran the holy city thus destroying both city and (Solomon’s) temple and hauling away the people captive for 70 years.

 

Mt. Moriah, which lays in this chain of mountain called Mt. Zion, standing some 2,700 feet above sea level being in the center of the earth, was the ideal spot for Solomon to place the holy temple. II Chronicles 3:1, then Solomon began to build the house of the Lord at Jerusalem in Mt. Moriah where the Lord appeared unto David his father. (Genesis 22:2) Around the middle of the 18th Century B.C., Abraham is instructed to take his son Isaac into the land of Moriah, upon a mountain of which he would later be shown and sacrifice his son, Joshua, around 1300 B.C., when entering the Promised Land, did not take Jerusalem, however in 1010 B.C., David captured the stronghold of the Jebusites making Jerusalem the capitol. From that time on Jerusalem is in the historical spotlight and plays the most important role being the city where God locates His most holy temple which Solomon builds in 950 B.C.

 

What a spectacular sight this must have been from the valley below where villages were located, stretching all the way down to the Dead Sea roughly 40 miles away to the lowest point in all the earth, 1300 ft. below sea level, when at night this magnificent holy temple area was well lighted. Naturally, from the highest level of the city Jerusalem on top of Mt. Moriah, the brilliant light reflected on the skyline which could be seen for many, many miles away as the people in towns and villages below the holy city level looked up and saw the lights of the holy city of Jerusalem.

 

Beneath all this mountainous area where Jerusalem sets are vast networks of mined out tunnels which were brought about when Solomon mined great quantities of granite rock out of the mountains, using it to erect his magnificent temple. Removing this rock left networks of tunnels below the old city and throughout her hundreds of years before the Babylonian captivity and total destruction of the city, these tunnels served Jerusalem to house livestock, garrisons of troops and especially in Solomon’s day, housed his armored chariots and over 1,000 horses. Naturally, the entrance of all tunnels was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar in 587 B.C.

 

PLAIN, SIMPLE TEMPLE

 

70 years passed from 587 B.C., until finally Cyrus the Great, the Persian leader, released the Jews whereupon some 50,000 (Ezra 2:64) returned to rebuild the temple inspired by the prophecies of Zechariah as well as Haggai, two prophets who had been sent back to encourage and strengthen the Jew during their 20 year period of rebuilding the temple. However, due to many hindrances of the enemy (Ezra 4:13, 4:21, 4:6-7) it was not until some 20 years later, around 536 B.C., before the second house of God was actually completed, and although not very much is actually known from scripture concerning the building of this simple, plain temple other than the fact that according to Ezra 4:1, the adversary halted the work of rebuilding the temple for many years by sending a letter to the King of Persia, it was only through the encouragement and prophecies of Haggai and Zechariah that the people finally arose and rebuilt the temple in the year 516 B.C. (Ezra 5:1, 6:15)

 

PROPHECIES REVEALING LATTER HOUSE

 

It was during the process of rebuilding the temple (built on a much simpler scale than the original) that these two prophets, Haggai and Zechariah, through their prophecies and visions reveals an astounding thing! THIS TEMPLE WILL BE DESTROYED AND SOMETIME LATER ANOTHER WILL RISE UP IN ITS PLACE! Yes, these prophets positively show a third temple will be erected at a later date. Later in this article we will discuss more thoroughly those precious eye opening prophecies and visions which bring forth two mighty revelations concerning the future plans of God for a new temple to be erected once again, sometime after Israel has again been driven out of her homeland (70 A.D.) And later returned (1948) once again becoming a nation of people!

 

TEMPLE ON EXACT FOUNDATION, THOUGH NOT WALLS

 

It should be added that although after 16 years of hindrances this 2nd temple was finally erected and furthermore on the exact foundation as that of the Solomon temple, although the temple court walls which surrounded the temple were not built upon their exact original foundation as before in Solomon’s day! Nevertheless, they did build walls and they were set back as close to the new temple and sacrificial rock as the people were to determine from certain traces of the old original court walls as to where they should go. Historically, today it is only the lower layers of the Western or Wailing Wall which extend back into this period, however, it is not built on the original first foundation site of the court wall itself. Isn’t it interesting further to note that according to Revelation 11:1-2, in the rebuilding of the 3rd temple, which John is instructed to measure, he was told to leave out the measurement of the court walls altogether!

 

WALLS ENCLOSE TEMPLE AREA

 

Beloved, Israel has never been without walls around her temple and worship area. No, not even in the days when she followed the Tabernacle in the Wilderness. There was always walls around her worship area, yet here John in Revelation 11 is instructed not to measure any court walls. WHY? Because beloved, this 3rd temple would go up in such an hour that it would run so close to the time the anti-christ would take over for his last 3½ years before the millennium, and even though there would be time to erect a temple, though maybe not in its completeness before the anti-christ took over, there simply wouldn’t be enough time to transpire to build the court walls which normally keep Gentiles out from observing Israel’s worship as she stands around her altar of sacrifice. Once Israel gains her holy spot and receives the sacrificial rock and begins sacrificing to God and is in the process of erecting her temple, before those court walls could go up something dreadful will happen in Jerusalem leaving her with only 3½ years before the millennium (Daniel 9:27, 12:11, Matthew 24:15-22). No, there simply won’t be enough time to bother erecting these walls because it won’t keep the Gentiles out anyway seeing they will tread down the holy temple area as well as the holy city for a space of 42 months or 3½ years.

 

WALLS KEEP GENTILES OUT

 

Recall, the court walls only prevent the Gentiles from viewing Israel in her worship service around the altar in the priest’s court. Something is going to happen allowing the Gentiles to tread down this sacred area as well as the holy city itself for 3½ years. Please note, it is in this special 3½ years where lies the clue as to the period when this 3rd temple will be erected! Surely there is no one who thinks that in the first 3½ years of the millennium, Gentiles will be allowed to tread down the holy temple area, while it is true Gentiles will continually be coming to Jerusalem according to prophecy (Zechariah 14:16-20) to worship the King, the Lord of Hosts; but there is not a verse in the Bible to indicate any Gentile, during the millennium, will ever be treading down the holy temple ground as well as the holy city for 3½ years! Therefore, sometime before the millennium begins something is going to happen in Israel that shall bring into focus the prophetical setting of Revelation 11:2.

 

PART 2 – REVELATION 11:2 PROVIDES CLUE

 

WHEN & WHERE TEMPLE IS BUILT

 

Having briefly observed the historical setting of Solomon’s as well as Zerubbabel’s temple (the 2nd temple), which was redecorated extensively by Herod some 500 years later only to be destroyed in 70 A.D., we are now ready to approach the following question from the scripture: WILL THERE BE A 3RD TEMPLE ERECTED? IF SO, WHEN AND WHERE WILL IT BE ERECTED? For all three answers we turn to Revelation 11:1, as we hear the angel instruct John, who is in the Spirit, to take a reed (like unto a rod) and measure three things: (1) the temple of God (2) the altar (3) them that worship therein, (or round the altar). As already stated, the only place Jews could ever worship God, seeing they are never permitted to enter into the temple for worship as that temple was designated strictly for the office work of the priest only, was always standing around the altar of sacrifice within the court area.

 

WHAT KIND OF TEMPLE IS MEASURED?

 

The year is 96 A.D., and the aged Apostle John is fully aware Israel’s temple no longer exists in Jerusalem, but has laid in ruins for some 26 years and furthermore since 70 A.D. Israel has not even had a daily animal sacrifice offered on her rock altar. Titus destroyed Jerusalem along with her (2nd) beautiful temple, however, here in Revelation 11 in 96 A.D., John is being instructed to measure not a new city, seeing the hour he has been projected into Jerusalem has already been rebuilt, but he is instructed to measure a new temple. What kind of temple do you suppose John is going to measure? Will the temple be the church as some think the temple of God is referred to in Revelation 11:1? If the temple of God is the believer which he is to measure, how would anyone ever measure the altar if it too is spiritual, seeing the only altar the Christian has ever had is where the Lamb of God was slain and offered once and for all, (Hebrews 10:10-12) several hundred yards outside the Damascus gate at Jerusalem on a hill called Calvary. Why go and measure that altar, it will never again be used!

 

GRACE AGE TEMPLE BUILT FROM LIVELY STONES

 

True, I do not deny that during the grace age the temple of God is the believer in Christ as clearly shown in I Corinthians 6:19, II Corinthians 6:16, nor do I deny that during this marvelous grace age we have a covenant with God, and not only is the believer the temple of the Holy Ghost, but furthermore, Hebrews 12:22-23 teaches us we have even come (in this grace age) to our Mt. Zion, unto our spiritual city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn. All this is true for the Gentile grace age, but Revelation 11:1-2 is not dealing with the grace age, it is dealing with Israel at the end of the age!

 

Scripture such as John 2:19 seems to mislead certain Gentiles where Christ, having been asked for a sign showing what authority he had driven money changers from the temple, simply answered the Jews by saying, destroy this temple and in three days I WILL RAISE IT UP! This spake He not of the natural temple, but of the temple of his body! This answer seems to imply to certain Gentiles that Christ would no longer be concerned with Israel ever having another natural temple. II Corinthians 6:16 teaches, Ye are the temple of God, you His bride people, during that grace age. Yet none of that annuls the fact after the church is gone that Israel will again have a natural temple! These and other scriptures are the ones that topologist play upon to do away with the fact that Israel’s temple is no longer important and that as far as God is concerned from this day on the only temple He is concerned about is the body of believers which is the only temple He will ever dwell in. That only holds true for the Gentile grace age period while God is gathering out a people for His name (Acts 15:14) however, read the next three verses which pertains strictly to Israel once He has gathered out His Gentile Bride! Although notice something, when God deals with Israel and when Israel is within her own land she has always had a temple as well as an altar of animal sacrifice, but the Gentile age has never had a natural altar nor a natural temple, but Israel has! Israel will again have her temple not after the millennium begins, but at least 3½ years before the millennium begins as it is plainly shown in Revelation 11:1-2. However, there are to be no court walls measured for this new temple seeing all that holy area around the altar of sacrifice is to be given over unto the Gentiles to trod under foot for 42 months, which, according to the Hebrew calendar is 3½ years, exactly the allotted time the anti-christ is given to rule and reign before the millennium begins!

 

WORSHIPERS AROUND ALTAR IN JOHN’S VISION

 

If John is to measure something, he must be looking upon whatever it is he is to measure, although in reality the year is 96 A.D., and he has been placed on the Isle of Patmos. In the future sight he has been projected into, taking place somewhere around the Day of the Lord shortly before the return of Christ, John is actually seeing the setting as it will appear in that distant day, although at this time (96 A.D.) The temple area lay in ruin and no doubt Titus’ 10th Roman Legion is still encamped at Jerusalem to keep order.

 

Therefore I ask you, according to Revelation 11:1, when John was given a reed likened unto a rod (used as a measuring stick) and told to rise and measure the temple of God, what did he measure? Did he take his reed and measure himself or some other believer for the temple of God? Was he himself not a (grace age) temple of the Holy Ghost! If John was being instructed to measure the church or believer who is the temple of the Holy Ghost today in the grace age (and we realize we are lively stones in the grace age making up a holy temple for God to dwell in), Ephesians 2. And what about those that worship therein or around the altar? What did he measure then? Last but not least, what about the court walls which are without the temple itself that John is instructed to leave alone and not measure because that temple ground is to be given unto the Gentiles? FOR WHAT REASON? To trod under foot the holy temple area along with the holy city for 3½ years! How, beloved, can anyone spiritualize this particular temple altar, worshipers and court walls saying it is the Gentile church? How can anyone make Revelation 11:1-2 apply to anything other than that of a literal setting, located in a literal Jerusalem, the Holy City, the only literal spot God has ever ordained where a natural temple would sit and furthermore, the only place He has ever had a rock altar of sacrifice was in Jerusalem. No, the temple will not sit just any place in Jerusalem, but only one designated spot, on top of Mt. Moriah, next to the sacred rock. See beloved, if you could spiritualize all this other, making it to be the church as some have, I simply can’t imagine how anyone could spiritualize the court walls which is to be left out for Gentiles to tread under foot for 42 months. You say it pertains to Babylon overrunning the church, IT DOES NOT! Oh, don’t you see the problems you can run into when you spiritualize a thing too far when it has only a natural setting. Not only do you destroy in your thinking the original setting God wants you to actually see, you spiritualize it to a point you run into no man’s land and it links to nothing, and the beautiful picture God wants you to see in your understanding is destroyed.

 

Note, whatever God intends to do naturally, even though you spiritualize it, it will not stop Him from doing in the natural what He intends to do. It only shows an individual who takes a natural biblical setting and can’t see it happen that way and spiritualizes it, always runs into serious trouble with the scriptures (II Peter 3:1-18). Such people remind me of those who must always interpret certain passages in Isaiah pertaining to natural lions being in the millennium to mean something spiritual because it goes cross grain with their idea of the millennium. Therefore, they feel the lions spoken of in connection with the millennium are not natural lions with their nature changed, but merely old lionish natures of people being calmed down, HOGWASH! Beloved, face it, there are some things written in this book that will require natural fulfillment as well as some spiritual things that will require spiritual fulfillment, and it will take some spiritual minds to look at this thing correctly in order to know what is natural and what is spiritual!

 

Yes, I wonder what ran through the mind of John as he has been lifted into the presence of God and ushered out into the Day of the Lord where he is told to take a rod and measure the temple of God, the altar and them that worship therein? If he had been like some today who always want to spiritualize everything, what do you suppose the poor man would have measured? However John is not confused, he knows exactly what to measure for in the Spirit he is standing in the center of the earth in Jerusalem where God placed his name, standing before the very object he is to measure. I want you to know there were already some worshipers around that rock altar in his vision also!

 

JOHN FAMILIAR WITH 2ND TEMPLE’S HISTORY

 

No, it isn’t the Herodian temple destroyed some 26 years before 96 A.D., that John has been instructed to measure. No doubt he well remembers having visited that magnificent temple quite often, first as a lad with his parents where he probably viewed the vast construction program already in progress in the Herodian period, which involved the workmanship of 1,000 priests, and he further recalls having visited the temple with his Lord and fellow disciples, often hearing his Lord tell of the hour when not one stone would be left standing upon another. John was also well familiar with the Jewish history surrounding the early struggles which evolved around the building of the holy sacred temple when Zerubbabel, Haggai, Zechariah, and Joshua the high priest all returned with 50,000 Jews (Ezra 2:64) from the exile in Babylon to rebuild the temple.

 

Sometime after Cyrus had given his order for the Jews to return and rebuild the temple, he left his throne in the hands of his son Artaxerxes, (Ezra 4:7) and journeyed off to conquer new territories. Yes, John is familiar with the problem which arose from the adversary of the Jews who already lived within the land of Palestine, who wanted to assist Zerubbabel in rebuilding the temple, (Ezra 4:2-10). Nevertheless, when Zerubbabel refused, the adversary wrote the new king telling him once the Jews had rebuilt their temple, city, etc., they would not pay him their taxes (Ezra 4:13). Upon hearing this the new king, not aware of the previous arrangements made by Cyrus, halted the building program of the temple, (Ezra 4:21) and thus was the work on the house of God suspended until 16 years later in the 2nd year of the reign of Darius the next king who found the decree which Cyrus had made, (Ezra 5:13, 6:1).

 

ANTIOCHUS IV. CALLED EPIPHANES

 

No doubt John is also well familiar with the Syrian Antiochus (Epiphanes) IV whose horrible persecution and defilement came against the second temple from around 175-164 B.C., all because the priest refused him entrance into the holy temple when he wanted to look around. John knows also Antiochus IV is a forerunner in type of the dreaded anti-christ who will unlawfully overrun this 3rd temple (II Thessalonians 2:4) before the real Christ comes into it (Ezekiel 43:4-8). Recall, when Christ comes into it, it is already built. It is the very temple John is instructed to measure, where he is told to leave out the measurement of the court walls. Antiochus IV (175-164 B.C.)

 

“EPIPHANES” – GOD MADE MANIFEST

 

This dreadful forerunner of the anti-christ soon gained the surname of Epiphanes, meaning “God made manifest.” This Gentile leader who defiled Israel’s 2nd temple and brought on the bloody Jewish Maccabee revolt was also called Antiochus (Epiphanes) the madman! And a mad dog he was! He entered the holy sanctuary of the 2nd temple, took away the golden altar, candlesticks and other sacred vessels (brought back from Babylon) and slaughtered many of the men, making a decree that the people forsake their own law, and as a result many of the Jews sacrificed to idols and profaned the Sabbath. Epiphanes, the madman, ordered idols to be erected and pagan altars to be set up using sacrifices of unclean animals. According to Josephus, Epiphanes reached the height of his abominable crimes against the Jews when, in 168 B.C., he ordered a sow sacrificed on a pagan altar on top of the holy rock altar of God and whoever refused to act according to the words of this cruel tyrant who ruled explicitly over the 2nd temple, was put to death. Mothers who circumcised their children were hanged on crosses while their children were hung by the neck until dead. Many Jews, rather than submit, were put to death. The bitter persecution of Antiochus IV resulted in the uprise and open revolt against him by the Jews in 168 B.C., led by a priest named Mattathias, which led into the famed Maccabeen revolt against the Assyrian Antiochus IV.

 

ANTI-CHRIST FORERUNNER

 

Thus we have seen the desecration of the 2nd temple which also had its evil tyrant to overrun it, who foreshadowed the man of sin who will overrun the 3rd temple shortly after it is erected, which temple John is instructed to measure, (Revelation 11:1). This man was only the foreshadow of the dreaded evil anti-christ of whom Paul spoke in II Thessalonians 2:4, who would sit in the 3rd rebuilt temple of God (Revelation 11) changing also the order and proclaiming himself to be God and demanding worship. Note further, Epiphanes IV foreran his evil role before the true Christ came to his temple (Malachi 3:1).

 

MT. MORIAH, LOCATION FOR 3RD TEMPLE

 

No, beloved, when Israel does rebuild her temple it cannot be on some other spot apart from the holy temple area as some think! If God would allow Israel to rebuild it in some other place than the holy spot on Mt. Moriah, He could have also chosen some place for Israel to inherit other than Canaan land! If God can change His mind after having built two temples on the same foundation at different intervals of time and then allow the third temple to be built elsewhere, He would never have had to bring Israel back to that old piece of ground in Palestine (before 1948) and resettled her! He could have just as easily resettled them out in the vast humid areas of New Mexico or Arizona. The Yuma desert and surrounding areas resemble much the arid area of the holy land. But as we want to emphasize, when Israel rebuilds even her old cities she always builds on the exact foundation of the old city itself. Therefore, once God places his finger on a certain geographical spot of ground in reference to Israel, that is exactly where He means for things to be located! Note for instance, when God chose a city, He chose Jerusalem. It didn’t matter how many Jebusites were present in 1010 B.C., or how strong their fortress might have been, God allowed David to capture their stronghold and call it Zion. It became David’s capitol and has remained God’s chosen city since that day! Once God places His finger on Jerusalem it is going to become His city of peace even though we realize Jerusalem has witnessed more wars, turmoil and confusion within that old city than probably any other one place in the world. Nevertheless, it is still called the city of peace because someday when Jerusalem will at last be at peace, the whole world will be at peace, and you can rest assured as long as Jerusalem is not at peace it is a good indication everything else in the world is in an uproar and mess also! So forget about Israel rebuilding her temple elsewhere! God doesn’t operate that way with Israel!

 

ISRAEL ALWAYS REBUILDS ON OLD LANDMARKS

 

Since the six day war, the U.N. has debated whether or not Israel must give up part of the Sinai. Sometimes it sounds like she might negotiate while all the time she is digging out from under the sinking sand old ruins of some of the Biblical cities, and upon those old foundational ruins there builds new settlements. What is she doing? Israel is fulfilling scripture! Did not God say He would bring her back into the land the He gave to her fathers and she would build the waste places and inhabit the desolate places. SHE IS DOING IT! I want you to note when Israel builds a new city or village, she doesn’t go out 15 miles from the old location and rebuild. No, instead she looks for those old landmarks and then rebuilds thereupon. Searching out these old landmarks ought to inform these modern interpreters of Baal whether God intends to rebuild His temple or not, and if so, on what ground He will rebuild, exactly where the old landmark for the temple is! Why? Because it fulfills the Bible. Therefore, do you see why the church must also return to the old landmark which has been buried far beneath the old Babylonian rubbish for over 1,500 years and rebuild!

 

TEMPLE REBUILT SHOWN BY 42 MONTHS

 

Archeologists, digging around the temple area, are finding stones, walls, etc., which have not seen the light of day for hundreds of years. Such great discoveries lets us know the original old landmark of the old walls within the Solomon period will be the spot Israel will rebuild her 3rd temple and that will be shortly before the end of the age, just in time to allow those final 3½ years, or 42 months, to be given over to the Gentiles and the anti-christ power where he shall rule from that newly erected temple and do his diabolical work treading down the holy temple area while he sits in the newly rebuilt temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God for a period of 42 months. Thus the angel told John, don’t bother to measure the court wall. Israel would never have time to erect those court walls before the area would be overrun by the Gentiles.

 

WHAT JOHN SAW IN THE SPIRIT

 

John has had quite an experience up until Revelation 11, seeing how in Chapters 4 and 5 he is caught up into the presence of God where he sees a throne set in heaven and a book is taken out of the hand of him that sits on the throne and opened by a bloody Lamb. He sees the four beasts with the six wings, creatures who are full of eyes that rest neither day nor night before the throne, but continually cry “Holy, Holy, Holy…” In Chapter 6, John sees the bloody Lamb open the seven seals upon the scroll. Before the 7th seal was opened, in the spirit John witnessed the sealing in of the 144,000 who are called out by two prophets sent to Israel in the hour that her temple is being rebuilt and the altar of sacrifice is re-established. Furthermore, he saw the great Gentile multitude who had come up out of the great tribulation resulting from the 3½ years of persecution by the anti-christ, (Revelation 7:14). In Chapter 8, he witnesses 30 minutes of silence while the 7th seal is being opened and the seven angels begin to sound their judgment trumpets, which primarily affects Israel and the Middle East. In Chapter 10, he witnessed the sounding of the seven thunders utter their voices, yet he was forbidden to write what they spoke. He further mentions the voice of the 7th angel, who is none other than the 7th Gentile church age messenger, (Revelation 10:7). How when he begins to sound the mystery of God should be finished. WHAT SHOULD BE FINISHED? Not every revelation, for John said, ONLY THE MYSTERY OF GOD! Then in Chapter 11, John is instructed to take a reed like a rod and measure three things: (1) the temple of God (2) the altar and (3) them than worship therein (by the altar). However, in verse 2 he is warned not to measure the court itself.

 

JOHN SEES TWO ANOINTED ONES PROPHESIED BY ZECHARIAH

 

Furthermore, in verses 3-12, he sees those two anointed prophet messengers who appear at this same time to prophesy to Israel for 3½ years to pronounce judgment upon Israel! WHY? For having made a covenant agreement with the anti-christ (Daniel 9:27). They smite the earth with all manner of plagues as often as they will. Also within that 3½ years calls out the 144,000 Israelites with a revelation of who Jesus is. After prophesying for 3½ years, John says these two prophets are destroyed by the anti-christ, or beast power.

 

ISRAEL, THE PREGNANT WOMAN

 

In Chapter 12, John sees Israel (not the church) as a pregnant woman, pregnant with prophecies concerning her Messiah, ready to burst into bloom. John sees Israel’s last 3½ years of history before the millennium reign begins fleeing from the presence of the anti-christ, who has now taken over her 3rd temple exactly as Antiochus (nicknamed Epiphanes), the foreshadow of this anti-christ, who took over the 2nd temple, and stopping the daily altar sacrifice, etc.! Is that not what this antichrist also does in the middle of that covenant week with Israel, (Daniel 9:27, 12:11)? Does he not also stop the daily sacrifice that is then on the altar, thus becoming himself the abomination of desolation that standeth in the holy place recorded by Jesus in Matthew 24:15, as he quoted the prophet Daniel, (Daniel 12:11)!

 

TITUS NOR MOSQUE IS ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION

 

But Brother Jackson, could not that abomination that maketh desolate be none other than Titus and the Roman army destroying the temple area in Jerusalem in 70 A.D.? No beloved, this thing that fulfills the prophecy of Matthew and Daniel happens only after cutting off the daily sacrifice and exists for only a period of 3½ years, whereas the holy place has continually been trodden down ever since the day of Titus. What is it then? It is none other than Rome and the anti-christ for a period of 3½ years before the close of the Gentile age.

 

CUTTING OFF SACRIFICE HOLDS HIDDEN CLUE

 

Neither did Tutus overrun Jerusalem simply for 3½ years. History proves Jerusalem since Titus’s day, was continually overrun by Gentile nations until 1967. Again I repeat, the Mosque of Omar didn’t stop the daily sacrifice spoken of by Daniel 9:27, 12:11, which sacrifice so many want to spiritualize and make to be Christ, when these verses have nothing to do with Christ whatsoever as being the sacrifice, but instead deals strictly with a daily sacrifice being cut off on the Jewish altar. The cutting off of that sacrifice, beloved, is the clue to when the abomination that maketh desolate stands in the holy place. But someone else may say, could not that abomination standing in the holy place recorded by Daniel by the Mosque of Omar or Dome of the Rock which has stood since the 7th Century? In one sense you might say the Dome of the Rock is an abomination, but is not the abomination spoken by Daniel. Why? Because the Moslems did not cut off the daily sacrifice and then place the Dome of the Rock over the holy Jewish altar and allow it to remain there for only approximately 3½ years! No, the Dome of the Rock has stood over the holy altar since the 7th Century, and besides that, there was no Jewish temple nor altar of sacrifice in existence in the 7th Century when the Moslems overran the holy city and placed the Dome of the Rock over the altar.

 

WHY MOSLEM’S INTERESTED IN ROCK

 

Why the Moslem’s are interested in this rock? The holy rock is important to two religions; Judaism and Muslimism. The Mosque, or Dome of the Rock, is the second holiest spot outside of Mecca in Arabia, and Moslems are required once in their lifetime to visit the holy rock. Mohammed, the last prophet of the Moslem religion, followed Jesus (some 400 years) with far more revelation thus causing Mohammed to be greater than Jesus. The Moslem religion accepts 38 prophets, of which Jesus is only one of the 38 who brought truth. The sacred rock holds a special interest to Moslems due to the fact their tradition teaches that from this rock Mohammed ascended into heaven. Embedded within the rock is supposed to be a footprint of this prophet as he ascended and a few hairs of Mohammed’s beard is also kept there. Both Arab Moslems and Jews alike in reality are mainly from the line of Ishmael, Abraham’s son of the flesh by the Egyptian handmaiden Hagar, along with also a mixture of the other sons of Abraham’s 2nd wife, after the death of Sarah, while the true Orthodox Jews descend through the line of Isaac through which the promise came. None but the seed of Isaac can inherit this promise. The Moslem religion is to Judaism what Catholicism is to true Christianity, a thorn in the flesh or a counterfeit of the real thing!

 

GENTILES TREADING TEMPLE AREA 42 MONTHS

 

FURNISHES VALUABLE CLUE

 

Time has come that we would look more closely at Revelation 11:2, which will not only prove Titus and the Roman Army nor the Mosque of Omar could possibly fit the scriptural abomination that maketh desolate standing in the holy place, but will show us approximately when the holy Jewish temple will be erected and where this mysterious special allotted time of 3½ years comes into focus where the Gentiles are allowed to tread down the holy temple area and holy city as well! Now beloved, I ask you a very simple question, we know from history the Gentiles have continually trodden down all of the holy city for no less than 2554 years and their trodden down did not cease until 1967. Then if you were going to place a little 3½ years over a period of 2554 years since Nebuchadnezzar crushed Jerusalem and the day of the Gentiles began, WHERE WOULD YOU PLACE THAT PERIOD OF TIME? The truth is, there is nowhere you could place that 3½ years into the period between 70 A.D., and 1967, and it is certain you can’t spiritualize the 40 and 2 months, stretching them out over all the period or long history that the Gentiles have trodden down the city, and if you can’t put it in the millennium, face it, where will you place it? Beloved, there is only one slot of time the 3½ years spoken of in Revelation 11:2 could possibly fit and that is somewhere between now and the coming of Christ to enter the millennium reign. It is the only place left for the 3½ years to fit in!

 

TEMPLE & ALTAR MUST GO TOGETHER

 

Revelation 11:1-2, deals strictly with a future restoration of the Jewish temple and the altar of sacrifice and don’t forget, those two always go together. Therefore, this should let Gentiles know once the temple is erected, it must be erected near the sacrificial altar and not on some other spot of ground elsewhere. Because it is this Jewish altar in operation, according to Daniel 9:27, the anti-christ brings to a halt. Nevertheless, before the anti-christ cuts off the sacrifice in the middle of his prophetic week, scripture teaches that two prophets come to Israel, not only did they prophesy against Israel, smiting with plagues as often as they would as a rebuke to Israel for aligning herself with this beastly system of Rome, but for 3½ years , Revelation 11:3 says these two prophets prophesy in the streets of Jerusalem and in the area where the temple is being constructed and the altar of sacrifice is in operation, where 144,000 of the House of Israel, according to Revelation 7:3-8, 14:1-5, will receive the revelation of who Jesus is as they are sealed with the Spirit of God (Revelation 4:3, Ephesians 4:30). Now when is all this being accomplished? In the first half of the 70th prophetic week before the anti-christ rises in power strong enough to cut off these two prophets (Revelation 11:7), stop the animal sacrifice on the Jewish altar, and take over the temple for the remaining 3½ years after their death, and become the abomination that maketh desolate, (Daniel 9:27). The period of his horrible reign begins after the daily sacrifice is cut off and continued for 1290 Hebrews days. WHAT COULD BE CLEARER!!

 

BLOODY ALTAR NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR REDEMPTION OF 144,000

 

Now concerning the 144,000, let us make one thing perfectly clear, this 144,000 from Israel, no doubt, were greatly stirred over the fact Israel is in a revival with her new temple and altar of sacrifice although their redemption and revelation of who Jesus is, which comes from these two prophets, have nothing whatsoever to do with the fact there is animal blood or animal sacrifice daily on the Jewish altar! (Hebrews 9:11-15) No, the 144,000 were not redeemed to Christ because an animal sacrifice lay on the altar. Then why have an altar, some will say? Beloved, what these two prophets are saying for the 3½ years does not change the majority of the Orthodox Jew whatsoever, he will continue seeing only the newly erected altar of sacrifice that is in progress. And he will lean heavily upon this as they did in the Old Testament days until that sacrifice is taken away from him in the middle of that final prophetic week of Daniel 9:27 and 12:11, which is clearly shown in Matthew 24:15, to be the hour for the abomination that maketh desolate to stand in the holy place for that final 3½ years before the millennium reign. Again I repeat, Daniel 12:11 declares from that time of cutting off the daily Jewish altar sacrifice (which has nothing to do with Christ, instead deals strictly with animal sacrifice on the Jewish altar) and the abomination that maketh desolate is set up, the anti-christ power will run for 1290 Hebrew days.

 

Isn’t it interesting to note that during the first half of this final prophetic week, 144,000 of the house of Israel are getting their eyes open to truth, yet still the greater percentage of Israel will be blinded by the promises and smooth words of the anti-christ before he breaks his Covenant in the middle of the week! Then all Israel gets their eyes open to who the anti-christ is, once he cuts off their sacrifice and moves into the temple to become Daniel’s prophesied abomination that maketh desolate. Beloved, one thing is certain, whether you want to say Israel has only 3½ years left or 7 to fulfill prophetic time before the millennium, the office work of these two prophets, whoever they are, will certainly not begin once the millennium has started. No, it all takes place before the millennium begins. The anti-christ’s final 3½ year reign of terror will not be after the millennium begins, it is shortly before. Therefore, what the prophets do and what the anti-christ does to fulfill his role must all be concluded in that final prophetic week, because when the millennium begins the two prophets have already prophesied for 3½ years and been killed by the anti-christ power and he too for 3½ years has run his course.

 

WHAT YOU FACE IF ONLY 3½ YEARS LEFT

 

Now I ask you, if there is only 3½ years left to that final prophetic week, called Daniel’s 70th week, to be fulfilled watch what you will run into. You have these two prophets prophesying for 3½ years; they are killed and their dead bodies lay in the street for 3½ days before they are resurrected. Don’t forget, God also limited the anti-christ to 3½ years. If the two prophets in Israel are prophesying during the same 3½ years while the Antichrist is treading down the holy place and Jerusalem, then he would be killing the two prophets, not at the beginning of his reign of terror, but instead at the end of his reign! See, he would be just coming into enough power at the end of his reign to cut off the two prophets and stop the daily sacrifice at a time when the Bible clearly reveals him to be losing out, because at this time Christ is coming to take over! Now if all this is accomplished by both prophets and the anti-christ simultaneously, Christ will be on His way down when all this is taking place, because Matthew 24:29-30 declares, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days, (anti-christ reign of terror, 3½ years) the sun will be darkened, and the moon shall withdraw her light, and the stars of the heavens shall be shaken: (30) And then shall be the sign of the coming of the son of man.” No, the truth is, there is a full prophetic week left, during the first 3½ years the Antichrist sits in Rome (not Jerusalem) carrying out his own diplomacy, while in Jerusalem you not only have a Jewish temple worship restored along with the altar sacrifice, but you have two prophets who are having a revival among certain Jews. Then beloved, after their 3½ years of prophecy the anti-christ cuts them off, as he is now ready to fulfill his 3½ years reign of terror.

 

HOW BEAST SPIRIT KILLS PROPHETS

 

For a few moments let us deal with the spirit of the best in Revelation 11:7, who comes out of the bottomless pit to make war against the two prophets, overcome and kill them after they have finished their testimony of 3½ years. Who is this beast spirit that rises out of the bottomless pit? We know a corporeal bodied man does not rise up out of the bottomless pit, but a spirit can. It is the same beast referred to in Revelation 17:8-18. This beast is none other than the resurrection of the political power of the Old Roman Empire, which before crumbling passed through seven imperial forms of government with the last head of government being referred to as the 8th is of the former (7th) power. The 8th form is religious, while the other heads were political (Revelation 17:11). The beast which ascends from the bottomless pit is the spirit of the devil which entwined itself in olden days around the first seven heads of the Roman Government before jumping over on the new head which was in Rome also. The 8th head, or form, which is referred to in scripture as still that of the 7th was the papal power or final form of government to ever set over the old Roman Empire! Even after the old Roman Empire had fallen, the popes were still able to rule the European territories referred to after the fall as the ten national powers of Europe, which are receiving their resurrection back into the 4th beast through the European Common Market.

 

8TH HEAD IS PAPAL OFFICE

 

Although time came in history when the 8th form of power (papal head) received a deadly blow to its headship which almost killed it, Revelation 13:1-10 teaches in time to come that 8th head would be healed and all the world would wonder after it! That head, or papal power, over the subjects of Rome will be completely healed somewhere around the time the covenant week of Daniel (Daniel 9:27) goes into effect, and the two prophets come on the scene who rebuke Israel who, I might add, in the past had been aligned with the U.S. as you well know. However, in the final period of time for the Gentiles, Israel is not aligned with the U.S., but instead with this resurrected beast system of old Imperial Rome of which the 8th head which was healed will once again be in headship!

 

8TH HEAD RECEIVES AUTHORITY OF 7TH

 

Yes, the beast system is none other than the 4th world empire which passed through seven great imperial head ships or office in its makeup. After so long a time without any life of the beast existing, what do we see? The spirit of this thing (Revelation 11:7) having already sometime earlier come up out of the bottomless pit, entwined itself once again around the last headship office Satan used for a mouthpiece before it vanished from the scene, which the Bible declares was that papal office wounded unto death. Seeing the papal office in olden days had wrestled from the 7th head or form of government which was political all authority and power simply means as the spirit of Satan, which had been working through this old system for hundreds if years now, sees the 7th head on the beast collapsing because of weakness, he simply jumps over into another part of Rome onto another chair, placing all authority that went with the imperial chair over onto this other chair, only this time it is religious. Nevertheless, it still leaves his power to be in Rome. It should be noted, the spirit of the devil, who works through the headship of this beast system even in its resurrected stage and is responsible for killing Israel’s two prophets a little over 3½ years before the millennium reign begins, first many hundreds of years ago as early as 39 B.C., began working through the first imperial headship to that beast. Through men called caesars and these caesars who represent the first head or office on this beast whose office was in Rome (and has always been in Rome) were cruel, evil, barbarous tyrants. It was the very incarnation of the devil himself. The caesars were worshiped as the God of heaven!

 

ROMAN RULERS WORSHIPED AS GOD

 

Now bear that statement in mind as you watch that spirit of the devil pass through every one of those heads on that beast, through the hundreds of years it existed, finally completely losing out under the 7th head where the papal power snatched all of its authority over onto the papal chair. Remember, in the resurrection of that empire it will be the 8th head, which of course is of the 7th, that will be the mouthpiece! That mouthpiece is going to leave Rome and come to Jerusalem, cut off a Jewish sacrifice that is in progress, kill two prophets, and take over a newly erected temple, becoming the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet. And he does that in the middle of a covenant week, (Daniel 9;27). (See VATICAN, VOL. 3, NO. 7)

 

8TH HEAD ONCE HEALED BECOMES MOUTHPIECE

 

Now let us quickly bring that old dilapidated Roman system into its final 3½ years as now it is the 8th which is of the 7th that was wounded unto death (16th & 18th Century), but is finally healed. Revelation 13:4-10 informs us that the devil or dragon gave power to this beast and this beast was given a mouth (the wounded 8th head now healed) to continue for 42 months or 3½ years, look what he did. Opens his mouth and blasphemes against God, blasphemes His name and (blasphemes) His tabernacle at Jerusalem as well as them that dwell in heaven, makes war with the saints of that hour and overcomes them and all upon the earth shall worship him, whose name is not written in the Lamb’s book of Life, slain from the foundation of the world. When does this transpire? In that final 42 months before the millennium begins. It corresponds perfectly with Revelation 11:2-7, where we are told this spirit kills the two prophets after their 3½ years were finished.

 

PART 3 – VISIONS & PROPHECIES

 

CONCERNING 2 PROPHETS & 3RD TEMPLE

 

Who are these two prophets who die in Jerusalem after prophesying for 3½ years in sackcloth, and if any man hurt them during their hour of prophecy fire proceedeth out of their mouth and devoureth the enemy? What manner of fire proceedeth out of their mouth? No, they don’t spew fire from their mouth like a fire dragon to devour their enemies! It is more like when Peter spoke to Annanias and Sapphira in Acts 5 and they dropped dead. Peter was simply anointed of the Holy Ghost and those words proceeding from his mouth were anointed with Holy Ghost fire, bringing instant death. Recall also, the prophet Elijah in the day of Ahab when Israel was in her worst hour of apostasy, fire did not proceed out of his mouth though he spoke the words declaring if I be a man of God let fire devour these men (and 102 men were burned to a crisp, II Kings 1:9-12), the judgment of God fell and burned up these men. It was the fiery judgement of God against Elijah’s enemies. Elijah only spoke Holy Ghost anointed words. Thus, it is true with the two prophets who walk the streets prophesying to Israel, smiting the earth with judgments (especially the Middle East), trying to show blinded Israel the error of her ways in uniting herself with this beast system and its mouthpiece, which is the 8th of the 7th head now healed who speaks for the beast in that hour, Daniel 9:27. Of these two prophets, the Lord God definitely referred to them in verse 4 as the two olive trees and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. Verse 6 declares these two olive trees and two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth have power to shut heaven that it rain not in the days of their prophecy, and have power over waters to turn them into blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues as often as they will. Why are these two men in Revelations 11:4 referred to as the two olive trees and the two candlesticks standing before the God of heaven? You can rest assured that in the proper hour when these two prophets come stomping out into the open, fulfilling Revelation 11:3-6, they will not be two young kid preachers! I further have my doubts they will be men fresh out of the Jewish Seminary, although it is for certain they will have come from God’s school.

 

ZECHARIAH PROPHECIES OF TWO PROPHETS

 

To learn more concerning these two men and how they were to play an important role within the final prophetic week of Israel’s history, as well as mankind’s final 7 years on earth before the Gentile dispensation closes out, we must go back some 500 years before the birth of Christ, to a time when the Children of Israel had returned from Babylon to rebuild their 2nd temple. I want to show you here from the prophecies and visions of two prophets, Zechariah and Haggai, prophets who were sent back to encourage Israel while she was in the process of rebuilding their 2nd temple, how these two prophets brought prophecies, not only concerning a time when Israel would be having her 3rd temple rebuilt, but also a great deal is learned concerning the two prophets who will be on the scene when Israel is rebuilding her 3rd temple. Isn’t it interesting to note while the 2nd temple was being rebuilt, Israel already had two prophets on the scene prophesying to the people future events concerning another time when Israel would be returning from another period of exile and would be in the process of rebuilding a 3rd temple when two great prophets would come on the scene. Zechariah had visions concerning the two prophets who are to be in Israel, which is positively confirmed in Revelation 11:4-6 as being the two prophets Zechariah spoke of, while Haggai gives forth prophecy showing the 3rd temple will be far more glorious (Haggai 2:3-9) than that of the 2nd temple they were presently building.

 

During that period Cyrus the Great had issued a decree for the Jews to return to Israel and rebuild the temple of God. Why? Because Solomon’s old temple was in ruins in that hour, exactly as the old Herodian temple is in ruins today. Zechariah and Haggai, the two prophets, are on the scene while the 2nd temple is being rebuilt along with Zerubbabel, the governor of the people who governed in social matters, and a man name Joshua is to be the high priest of this 2nd temple. Wonder why this man was called Joshua, which in Greek means Jesus? Why wasn’t he named Aaron or some other name? Because the name Joshua (Jesus in Greek) will also link to this spiritual temple for the grace age as well as the 3rd Jewish temple that will be built in Israel in time for the final 3½ years to be given back over to the Gentiles, who before 1967, had continuously overrun Jerusalem since Nebuchadnezzar’s day, for a period of 2554 years. Therefore, sometime after 1967, and some 3½ years before the millennium begins, once again the Gentiles will tread down Jerusalem as well as the holy temple area. However, this time not before a 3rd temple has been erected and an altar of sacrifice re-established, and then for only 3½ years, the shortest period the Gentiles have ever had to tread down Jerusalem, but they will be the most severe, (Matthew 24:15-21).

 

Therefore, it is clearly evident these two prophets, although they are spoken of as minor prophets, were actually restoration temple prophets on the scene as Israel was building her 2nd temple, both prophesying future events concerning Israel! Prophecies by these two men prophesying in Israel while Israel cleared away the burned out mountain of rubbish left by Nebuchadnezzar’s army 70 years before and prepared to reconstruct the temple, are most fascinating and too important for us to simply overlook. Yes, while the 2nd temple was under construction, God was also showing Zechariah a future event pertaining to the two prophets which we are studying about in Revelation 11. Note, the angel addressing John called them practically the same thing the angel speaking to Zechariah 500 B.C. calls them, the two olive trees and the two candlesticks (lamp stands)! At this time when we touch Zechariah 4, Zechariah has already had a number of visions which pertain primarily to his own period and what is being accomplished in the building of the 2nd temple. However, Zechariah saw something that did not pertain unto his period, this he was most concerned about. Zechariah says the angel awoke him out of sleep, asking him what did he see? Where upon he replied, I saw a candlestick all of gold. Actually what Zechariah saw was the golden Jewish Menorah used only in the temple worship which consisted of a bowl to hold the olive oil in. Upon the top of the bowl were 7 lamps, in other words, it had a stem running from the large bowl holding the oil, out through 7 pipes or stems which formed little burners at the end of the stem, making 7 lights. But he saw something else standing on each side of the Menorah which really stirred his curiosity! According to verse 3, he saw two olive trees, one of either side of the bowl and he asked the angel what these were? For the moment the angel seemed to ignore his present question concerning the two olive trees and began to explain something else to him which had a present tense meaning. In verses 5-6, the angel answered him, “This is the Word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel (the Jewish governor of social affairs of returning people who is mentioned in both Zechariah and Haggai’s writings) it is not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit saith the Lord.” No doubt Zechariah wonders how such a statement could possibly link with the two olive trees and lamp stands he saw (actually there is no connection, nevertheless keep watching).

 

MOUNTAIN OF RUBBISH

 

Listen as the angel continues saying something in behalf of Zerubbabel the governor with this returning people. (7) “Who art thou, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain.” Remember the setting, Israel had been returned for quite a few years, yet still no temple has gone up. Because after Cyrus gave his decree to build the temple, he left his throne in the hand of another and journeyed elsewhere. When the enemy of the Jews wrote the new king saying, once the Jews had finished their city and temple, they would not pay taxes to him, and for some reason not being aware of the decree made by Cyrus, he stopped the work which remained stopped for 16 years until the 2nd year of Darius the new king. It is in the 2nd year of Darius’s reign, in the 6th, 7th and 8th months, that these two prophets are stirring up the people with prophecy to come forth and begin to rebuild the temple after such a lengthy time. Bear in mind, even though Israel does not have her 2nd temple up, for a number of years her altar of sacrifice has certainly been in operation. The angel of the Lord has addressed a great mountain standing on Mt. Moriah, which is nothing more than a vast mountain of rubbish and charred ruins which once had been a beautiful city as well as a magnificent temple, only now it all appears as nothing. Huge stones piled in every direction, and over that 70 year period weeds and brush have grown up everywhere. Poor Zerubbabel (the governor) has been placed in charge to see the house of God and the city are rebuilt. However, no sooner do these people return to face this gigantic mountain of rubbish, which is their responsibility to clean away, than a spirit of discouragement hits them. Even though word finally arrived from Darius, the 2nd Gentile world ruler, that after 16 years they may continue their building, the Jews seemingly have lost interest. They had to be stirred by the words of these two prophets as God speaks to get His house rebuilt. Zerubbabel, having looked at this mountain of rubbish, perhaps in his heart says, O Lord, look what a mess! How will it be done? Our people are dishearted over what they see. Then we hear the prophecy to Zerubbabel saying, Who art thou, O mountain (of rubbish)? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain! It won’t be by might nor by power, but by my spirit saith the Lord. Notice the Lord is telling Zerubbabel he will move on the hearts of the people and stir them mightily with the spirit to work. Without bulldozers, cranes or even dynamite, the Lord says it will be leveled like a plain.

 

Zechariah is concerned about who those two olive trees are and as yet he has not received an answer. Why? They do not concern his hour, therefore, the angel continues with the present tense prophecy that does effect his hour as he says, after they clear that mountain of rubbish away, Zerubbabel shall bring the headstone to Joshua the high priest shouting Grace, Grace. The headstone was none other than the cornerstone used in Solomon’s temple, which at present, lay in that mountain of rubbish. First they had to find the headstone and place it into the building. They are moved on by the spirit of God to begin work and finally clean up this terrible mess, and as they do they find the chief cornerstone (with 7 eyes) of the first temple and place it in the second, (all measurements will be taken from this stone). It is Zerubbabel’s responsibility, according to the prophecy, to bring the head or cornerstone with shouts crying grace, grace and place it at the feet of one called Joshua who is to serve as high priest of the 2nd temple. Later we see how Joshua, being the high priest of the 2nd temple, will be connected with the Lord Jesus of the 3rd temple.

 

Continuing to discuss only the 2nd house, the angel says, (9) “The hands of Zerubbabel has laid the foundation of this temple, his hand shall also finish it.” Don’t worry Zerubbabel, the house of God will be rebuilt and it will be rebuilt under your direction.

 

THINGS HEADSTONE SIGNIFIES

 

Observe once again the cornerstone or headstone which was found and Zerubbabel brought it to the high priest, Joshua, which contained the engraving of 7 eyes, which absolutely is a type of Jesus Christ. Joshua the high priest means Jesus Saviour, who is or high priest, (Hebrews 10:19-25), and also is the chief cornerstone (rejected stone) that went into our spiritual temple foundation in the grace age of which the redeemed are lively stones, becoming a part of this spiritual temple for the grace age among the Gentiles. Although this is true, don’t spiritualize that natural Jewish temple as the house to be built during the grace age whereupon Jesus is to be the chief cornerstone. Even though this cornerstone or headstone (used in the 1st and 2nd temple), engraved with 7 eyes, does show a spiritual type for the grace age temple, please don’t confuse the two. Don’t spiritualize away any of the Jewish temples: don’t be guilty of taking scriptures which clearly apply to Israel’s rebuilt natural temple and make them apply strictly to this grace age either. Remember, there is a spiritual temple for the grace age and there is a natural temple to be erected for Israel shown in the scripture.

 

Zerubbabel brought the chief cornerstone and laid it at the feet of Joshua. This headstone in the two natural temples represented the 7 attribute spirits of God: (1) Jehovah-jireh (the Lord will provide), (2) Jehovah-rapha (the Lord that healeth), (3) Jehovah-nissi (the Lord our banner), (4) Jehovah-Shalom (the Lord our peace), (5) Jehovah-ra-ah (the Lord my shepherd), (6) Jehovah-tsidkenu (the Lord our righteousness) and (7) Jehovah-shammah (the Lord is present). Recall, when Jesus (which is Greek for Joshua) the Christ became our high priest, offering His own blood becoming also the chief cornerstone to the spiritual temple which was laid, He was these 7 attribute spirits of God all wrapped in one body of flesh, or one spiritual chief cornerstone. Furthermore, it is Jesus the Messiah who came in the 2nd temple, was rejected and then became the chief cornerstone to our temple for the grace age. However notice, the Jews will actually be building the 3rd temple for Jesus their Messiah to sit in during the Millennium reign, (Ezekiel 43:4-7).

 

WHY ZECHARIAH & HAGGAI SHOWN SETTING FOR 3RD TEMPLE

 

Zechariah still can’t shake the vision from his mind concerning the two olive trees he saw. The angel explains all about the restoring of the present house of God but Zechariah, still inquisitive, asks, what about the other two things you showed me? I want to know what they are. (Verse 11-14) Why was Zechariah shown these two olive trees at this time? Why were they not shown to another prophet in another hour? It is important because the prophet is shown these olive trees during an hour when Israel had (1) returned from captivity and (2) returned to rebuild her 2nd temple. In such a setting as this God gave Zechariah this vision of the two olive trees and the candlestick which absolutely had nothing to do with the present rebuilding of the temple. Zechariah and Haggai were the two (restoration temple) prophets present here in Israel for that hour prophesying things pointing to future events. That future event is confirmed in Revelation 11:3-6, concerning Israel’s future temple and two prophets. And note, both temple and prophets as well are reconfirmed (together), confirmed 600 years later by John on the Isle of Patmos, and get this, in a day and hour when Israel did not have a temple standing, seeing Titus had destroyed the 2nd Jewish temple 26½ years prior to John’s vision. (Revelation 11)

 

Back to inquisitive Zechariah who ask again for an explanation of these two olive trees & candlesticks. Notice verse 12, “What are the two olive branches, which through the two golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves?” And the angel says, (13) “Knowest thou not what these be? (14) These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth.”

 

TWO GREAT ANOINTINGS ON EARTH

 

Zechariah, one of those two (restoration temple) prophets who is present for the rebuilding of Israel’s 2nd temple, has looked way down into Israel’s future and saw the time when she shall rebuild again, and there he saw the two prophets that will be present. His prophetic sight had taken him down to the final seven years of Israel’s history before the end of the age, into a time recorded in Revelation 11:4 to have been fulfilled by these two prophets at the end of the age. Get this, two prophets who come to Israel as she has once again returned from captivity and once again rebuilt her temple exactly as they were doing in 519 B.C., when the vision broke. When you examine that statement of Revelation 11, it reads almost identically word for word as to what the angel told Zechariah, and John also in 96 A.D., is being shown exactly who these two olive trees are to be. These two prophets are the two golden candlesticks or the two olive trees which stand before God of the whole earth. This is what it means, these are two of the greatest anointings of God Israel will ever experience, and note, they will experience these two anointings at the same time while she is in the process of rebuilding the 3rd temple.

 

Recall, it was the messenger to the age who revealed how this lamp stand with the 7 golden lamplights was represented by the grace age as those 7 lights represented the seven gentile church age messengers recorded in Revelation 2 & 3. All 7 receive their revelated light from where? The same golden bowl of oil, which is the genuine Holy Ghost. Also note Revelation 4 & 5, John was taken up into heaven where he notices seven spirits of God. Now in reality we know this one spirit God is no more seven different or separate spirits than He is three separate spirits distinct persons! What then is the meaning to all this? Recall that headstone with the seven eyes which was the cornerstone of the rebuilt temple we discussed showing the seven attribute powers of God to this people. God is only one spirit (Ephesians 4:4), however, within this one spirit called God lies these seven different expressions or attributes of Himself to His people.

 

In Revelation 1, when John saw Jesus standing in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks (Revelation 1:12-20), we realize what John saw was that spiritual light (Jesus said, I am the light of the world!) of Christ unto those seven Asiatic churches, yet was also the light of Christ which would be exemplified through the seven dispensations of the grace age, and with each age would be attached an angel messenger! But where did that light originate which lit the seven candle lights? FROM CHRIST OF COURSE! He is that light. No, by no means is God actually seven different spirits, nevertheless, within him are those seven attributes of power which God may, whenever and wherever he chooses, execute and recall whenever He does choose to act through those attributes of power it is always here upon the earth where they are manifested! Therefore we are fully aware that it is also here upon the earth, through the two olive trees mentioned in Revelation 11:4 & Zechariah 4:11-14 that the golden oil will be poured out in a full demonstration of his mighty power.

 

GOD IS GOLDEN OIL POURED OUT

 

Scripturally, what is the purpose of an olive tree? To originate olive oil, right? Therefore, if an olive tree is a symbol of oil, what then is oil a symbol of? It is the symbol of the Holy Ghost and the Holy Ghost is none other than God. Then in the vision of Zechariah 4, that makes the spirit of God to be none other than this golden oil to be poured out! Yet how will it apply to Zechariah’s vision, and furthermore, how does it fit into the picture of the two olive trees when the angel declare they were the two anointed ones? Zechariah 4:14, while Revelation 11:3 declares them to be those two powerful prophets who have power to smite the earth with all manner of plagues as often as they will. In reality it means this, these are the two special anointings God has chosen to demonstrate Himself through within a certain precise period of time (3½ years).

 

MOSES CARRIED ANOINTING FOR DELIVERANCE

 

Beloved, one of the greatest anointings of God to ever rest upon one man, rested upon Moses while delivering Israel from Egyptian bondage. Moses smote Egypt continually with plagues and turned water into blood. Please note the comparison: (1) Moses, as a man, symbolizes that great anointing of God. As a man he was chosen to lead a people to safety who were in exile and bondage and over in that hour of Revelation 11, Jerusalem will also be in bondage under the rule of the Antichrist and shall need delivering, and 144,000 shall be delivered! (2) Moses was a man chosen to be a lawgiver which was God’s word for that hour when Israel needed to hear from God in order to know how God would have them to walk and live. (3) He was a man anointed to execute judgment upon the earth at a time when God was ready to gather His people together to take them from their place of bondage and (4) since that day at no other time has there been that anointing to hit the earth. One day when that anointing was on Moses, Egypt became pitch dark. What was it? It was the anointing of God resting upon Moses as he had authority to execute it. Moses spoke and lice came from every direction. What was that? That was a plague! When that man spoke water became blood, hail fell from heaven ripping crops to pieces. When Moses spoke every firstborn in Egypt died. What was it? It was an anointing from God resting upon a prophet in an hour of judgment dealing with a people to lead them out of bondage. According to Revelation 11, at an hour when the temple is being rebuilt, the Jewish sacrifice altar in operation and shortly before the holy place is to be turned over to the Gentiles, not for another lengthy period of 2554 years, but this time only for a period of 3½ years that same anointing that was upon the man Moses the prophet, will once agin hit this earth. Although there was no process of building a temple when that special anointing first visited the earth, nevertheless, Moses as a lawgiver showed Israel how the tabernacle of badger skins and goatskins should be built, which was none other than a shadow of the very temple itself.

 

ELIJAH CARRIED ANOINTING DEALING WITH APOSTASY

 

What about the other special anointing or the other olive tree? Recall these are special anointings of God. True, any true anointing a man ministers in is an anointing of God, however, there are certain anointings of God that hits this earth for a precise objective of God. That is the kind of anointing I want you to see! What is that next anointing which is also represented by an olive tree, the holy anointing. It is the anointing of Elijah! Sure Israel had other prophets, Isaiah, Amos, Hosea, Nehemiah, etc., all these were prophets, yet not anointed like Elijah. He was not a prophet called to lead from or perform an exit. No, he was a prophet sent to deal with apostasy, and did that anointing which rested on Elijah ever know how to deal with apostasy.

 

That anointing on Elijah contested false prophets of Ahab and Jezebel, while Moses spoke and lice, hail, blood and death followed. Elijah prayed and shut up the heavens for 3½ years that it ran not in Israel. See, Elijah also brought judgment. Now do you see these two special anointings? They are God’s severe anointings dealing with man while he is seeking to execute a precise object and purpose in the earth to deal with a certain situation. Elijah came at an hour when the ten northern tribes had drifted far from the true original worship. As this great apostasy was in Israel, that anointing came on a man as he stomped out the woods. Elijah dealt with apostasy. One day Ahab called forth 50 men to go forth to get Elijah and all Elijah said was, if I be a man of God, let fire come down and burn them up. It happened and was repeated again, making a total of 102 men burned to a crisp. No, it had never been seen on this fashion before. That particular anointing did not even rest on Moses (II Kings 1:9-12).

 

Now can you see when it speaks in Revelation 11:5, how from these two anointings on these two men that fire proceedeth from their mouth, it is not a literal fire coming from their mouth, it is that special Holy Ghost anointing on the spoken word. What are these two olive trees? They are non other than these two special anointings of God, and the reason the vision was given to Zechariah and not another prophet in a different hour is because it goes in connection with the rebuilding of the temple in a future date. No, it didn’t fit into the building of their present temple, it carried altogether a future application, when these two great anointings of God (two olive trees) will be used by the Lord only as He deals with man for some precise reason and purpose. Such of Elijah when he dealt with apostasy and the judgment of God was, Lord, don’t let it rain, and for 3½ years it didn’t. What a horrible sight Israel must have faced in that hour when both men and cattle suffered extremely. Why? Because Israel had strayed from the ordinances of God.

 

Yes, I want you to know when that man of sin signs that 7 year Covenant agreement with those political minded Jews (Daniel 9:27), as they are in the process of rebuilding their temple, (Revelation 11:1-2), having their altar of sacrifice in operation, out of the woods will come these two special anointed prophets who prophesy for 40 and 2 months or 3½ years. Once God sent Moses, then 1000 years later he sent Elijah, however, never before has these two anointings been sent at the same time. Therefore, these two anointings will come together to rebuke Israel for what she has done. Simultaneously God gives them both barrels of His anointed gun or both anointings at the same time. Why? Because Jerusalem is in bondage to a covenant agreement and there are 144,000 people who need delivering, while God wants to judge the political Jews for their action and He sends these two prophets to walk the streets and prophesy, pronouncing judgments and plagues. Revelation 11 says, they have power to shut the heavens, that is what Elijah did. Revelation 11:6 further says, they have power to turn water to blood, that is what Moses did. However, it further says they have power to smite the earth with all manner of plagues, therefore, we are shown within the 6th trumpet judgments within that hour, how hail falls from heaven, (Revelation 8:7). Recall among other things, Moses plagues Egypt with hail. Yes, they have power to smite the earth with plagues.

 

HEAVENLY & EARTHLY SCENE

 

Now please observe carefully two scenes. The first one is on the earth and the second will be in glory. On earth two Jews will come stomping out of the wilderness to appear on the streets of Jerusalem prophesying for a space of 3½ years and striking the earth with plagues as often as they will, while in glory from the great throne of God I can see the vastness of that Holy anointing of God suddenly being turned loose, and beloved, that mighty anointing of God (the Golden Oil) will empty itself through these two prophets here upon earth! Once again the earth will see the anointing that rested upon Moses and Elijah or Elijah and Moses together in action. Why? Because God will send those two anointings once again into the land of Israel, prophesying and pronouncing judgement in an hour when they are erecting their temple.

 

ELIJAH’S SPIRIT ON JOHN

 

Recall in the day of John the Baptist he came in the spirit and power of Elijah, although he was not Elijah, (Luke 1:17) and that spirit stood on the earth at the end of the Law age announcing, Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. John the Baptist was closing one dispensation and introducing a new one. Furthermore, it was an interlinking anointing, therefore, watch that anointing when it hits this earth again, coming to Israel, prophesying judgment at a time when the Gentile age is closing out and introducing to the hearts the millennium that is to come, an age Israel has long waited for. I don’t know who these two men will be, that is not the purpose of this article, only to show these two men will walk together in the anointing that rested on Moses and Elijah.

 

MOSES & ELIJAH APPEAR TOGETHER

 

Recall further out in Matthew 17, when Jesus had stated some of you shall not taste of death until you have seen the son of man coming in the power and glory of His kingdom. Six days later Peter, James and John are taken up on a mountain where they saw a vision of what Jesus will be like in the kingdom age. The scripture declares the face of Jesus did shine as the sun and His raiment was white as light. There was a glow about Him as His face did shine while His raiment was white as light. Is that not the picture we see in Revelation 19, when heaven is opened as Jesus is ready to split the eastern skies and return in the power and glory of His kingdom to rule and reign?

 

What else was seen in that vision? Recall, Moses and Elijah appeared together talking unto Him. In other words, here stood those two great anointings like this earth has never seen before and note these two anointings were together in the vision. Beloved, this vision the three disciples are looking upon pertains to what Jesus would be like in the kingdom. Yet it is shortly before the kingdom is ushered in that there shall be these two mighty anointings which were on Moses and Elijah that shall come to Israel during her last prophetic week of time which proceeds and closes out the whole calamity of God dealing with the human race. No, I do not say it will literally be these two men called Moses and Elijah, but undoubtedly it shall be those two mightiest anointings of God resting upon two men of that hour, but from those anointings it shall appear like Moses and Elijah are back on the earth again.

 

HAGGAI’S PROPHECY CONCERNING LATTER HOUSE

 

Haggai, one of the two restoration temple prophets on the scene while the 2nd temple was being constructed, is given prophecy concerning the glory of the latter house, or 3rd temple, which one day would replace this 2nd temple. This book consists of only two short chapters, yet what powerful chapters they are. Again I ask, why would it be Haggai and Zechariah (In 519 B.C.) who are being shown about the temple (or the latter house) as well as the two prophets in Israel’s future? Because these are the two prophets who fulfill the present role while the 2nd temple is under construction, prophesying concerning the glory of the 3rd temple to encourage the elderly people who are building the 2nd house who could remember the glory of the first house.

 

The setting of Haggai is exactly the same as that of Zechariah, only his prophecies come several months ahead of Zechariah’s. Both prophets prophecy in the 2nd year of Darius, the Medo-Persian leader of the 2nd world empire. It was not until the 2nd year of Darius’s reign that this decree made by Cyrus was discovered and Darius gave new orders to proceed with the building of the house which will only be a plain, undecorated house of the Lord completed four years later during Darius’ 6th year of reign, and will remain so until 500 years later when the architectural genius King Herod takes it upon himself to enlarge, beautify and elevate this present simple temple, which has no present description other than Ezra 6:3.

 

From Haggai’s prophecies we know this hour was far from being what the first house was, and the older people who could remember the glory of the first house were very disturbed and sorrowful over being unable to do any better (lack of finance, etc.) Bear in mind, 16 years had passed and not one block has been laid upon another during that time. As the prophecy opens, the spirit of God is somewhat fretted with the people over this lengthy standstill as He declares in 1:2, this people say the time has not come, that the Lord’s house should be built. Verse 4, God says, through the prophet, O ye, who dwell in your cieled houses, and let this house lay waste, it is time (after 16 years) for you to build. Verse 5, now therefore consider your ways. Verses 6-10, God tells the people why they haven’t prospered any better than they have in their last 16 years. You haven’t built my house, says the Lord! Verse 8, He instructs them to go to the mountains to bring wood and build my house of which God says I will take pleasure in and I will be glorified saith the Lord. Verse 14 declares the spirit of the Lord stirred up the spirit of the governor, the high priest and the remnant of the people, and they came and did work in the house of the Lord of host their God.

 

See also Ezra 3 thru 6 for the complete story of their 16 years in the land without a house. The families, having returned to their original cities, Ezra 2:70, met in Jerusalem and erected the altar whereby they might offer burnt offerings, (Ezra 3:1-3), beginning the 7th month of the 1st year. Ezra tells how in the 2nd year they met, laid a foundation, and started to build a wall when stopped by the new king and work was delayed for 16 years, Ezra 3:8-13, Ezra 4:11-24.

 

2ND TEMPLE NOT AS GLORIOUS AS 1ST TEMPLE

 

GRIEVES OLDER JEWS

 

Haggai 2 begins with another prophecy unto the people saying, who is left among you (elderly people) that saw “this house” in her first glory (Solomon’s temple), and how do you see it now? It is not in your eyes in comparison of it (1st house) as nothing! In other words, God is saying, isn’t this little plain, undecorated building in your sight as nothing compared to the glorious former house (Solomon’s temple)? Undoubtedly what has happened, God has revealed the peoples thoughts, especially the elderly people who could remember Solomon’s temple from their youth before the captivity and its destruction. God is saying to these people, who saw this house in her first glory?

 

Note the phrase “this house”, irregardless to which building the Lord refers to, whether the first, second or third temple, He always refers to it as “this house” as you shall see as you read the chapter. God has reference to the glory of Solomon’s, yet spoke of it in the present tense “this house” speaking of “this house” in its first glory, although destroyed over 80 years! Undoubtedly many could say in their hearts Lord, I can remember, and this little thing we are building isn’t anything compared to what we had in Solomon’s day, (they seemed ashamed of this building)!

 

No doubt Zerubbabel felt very downhearted knowing he couldn’t build one like Solomon had, nevertheless, God encourages him with prophecy telling him it will serve the purpose. Ezra 3:10, 11, 12 declares the old people wept who could remember the glory of the first house as a child. See also II Kings 25:9. Why did they weep? “This house” was nothing compared to the first house, so plain while the other one was so ornamented. The lavish beauty of “this house” under Solomon required seven years to complete, whereas this present structure (2nd house) required only four.

 

5 THINGS MISSING IN 2ND TEMPLE

 

The description of Solomon’s temple is found in I Kings 6:1-38, II Chronicles chapters 2 thru 4.

 

Furthermore, five things, according to Talmud, were missing in the 2nd temple which was found in the 1st temple: (1) the ark of the covenant, (2) the sacred fire, (3) the Shekinah glory, (4) the Holy Spirit and (5) the Urim Thummim. Josephus declares the holy of holies was empty in the 2nd temple and a single slab marked the sot where once stood the ark of the covenant. Truly this house was nothing in comparison to Solomon’s temple which God also referred to as “this house”, (Haggai 2:3). However, in their downheartedness God informs them in verse 9 that the glory of the latter house (3rd temple) shall be even more than the glory of the former house (Solomon’s temple), therefore don’t worry about it, just build the house.

 

LATTER HOUSE BUILT IN HOUR OF SHAKING OF ALL THINGS

 

Verse 6 declares, yet in a little while will I shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land (this shaking comes at the end of the Gentile age). God continues by saying, I will shake all nations (when?) At the end of the Gentile age. Beloved, we are in the closing hours of this Gentile age. Why else do you think America’s political structure is being shaken to pieces? First with such dissatisfaction of the nation with the Vietnam War, and secondly the Watergate situation, and thirdly with America losing her prestige among nations, while the dollar sinks to a new low, bouncing like a straw on an angry wave on the money markets of the world. Not only is America, but the Gentile nations of the world are being shaken to pieces, that is evident everywhere. No, this setting cannot be placed at Christ’s first coming, only at His second.

 

Watch now for some vital clues coming up on that 3rd temple, although God still refers to it as “this house” when He says, the glory of the latter house will be far greater than that of the former house. Recall, former house in verse 3 was Solomon’s as they are erecting the 2nd house which apparently had no visible glory at all. The glory of the latter house was nothing to do with any part of the 2nd building destroyed in 70 A.D.

 

Begin looking for the appearing of this latter house sometime around the time of the shaking of all nations as well as the shaking of all things, for the nearer we reach the end the more things will be shaken! What else did God say through Zechariah, and the desire of all nations (in the millennium) shall come and I will fill this house with glory, saith the Lord! Irregardless to how many houses God built, He also referred to it as “this house”. The setting has moved now from the 2nd house, to the end of the Gentile age to the latter house where God shakes all nations, etc. (See also Haggai 2:21-23) Now we begin hearing him begin to talk about a time that He will fill “this house with glory”! Somewhere in that period and not during the time Zerubbabel is building the temple which was destroyed in 70 A.D. by the Romans. The setting ends with the Gentile age and enters into the Millennium where God begins to tell how He will fill this house with glory. However our point is, the 3rd house is already built somewhere in the closing of the Gentile age before the Lord enters into this house at Jerusalem and fills it with glory!

 

EZEKIEL WITNESSED GLORY ENTER LATTER HOUSE

 

Pause there for a moment and turn into Ezekiel 40 thru 47 which describes this house in that hour beginning with the millennium! Remember, John the Revelator in Revelation 11 was given a reed liken unto a rod to measure the temple, altar, and worshipers and note also in Ezekiel 40, we are told of a man who was given a measuring rod and also told to measure the temple (this latter house)! I am not saying John was that man, but I am saying John was also given a reed and told to measure the temple of God. Ezekiel 43:4-7 informs us how the glory of the Lord entered into this rebuilt house, when the Lord Himself entered into the house by the way of the Kings Gate toward the East. Ezekiel says the spirit of the Lord picked him up and stood him in the inner court (of the newly built temple) and he says he beheld the glory of the Lord fill the house. Haggai 2:7 declared He would do just exactly that! Ezekiel further declares he heard the Lord (Jesus speak out of the house, 3rd rebuilt temple in Jerusalem at the beginning of the Millennium) saying, Son of man the place of my throne and the place of the souls of my feet where I will dwell in the midst of the Children of Israel forever and my holy name shall the Children of Israel never again defile.

 

FIRST HOUSE NO COMPARISON TO GLORY OF LATTER HOUSE

 

I repeat, through Haggai, God is speaking to those dishearten, sorrowing, elderly people who could remember this house in its first glory, telling the people about the time all nations are being shaken at the end of the Gentile dispensation, another building will be going up, far superior to anything yet. Verse 8, the silver is mine and the gold is mine, saith the Lord. In other words, I could build a nicer house now if I wanted to. Do I not own all the gold and silver? Just wait, don’t feel bad about it because this house (2nd temple) is so plain, I am satisfied! Verse 9, because the glory of this latter house (3rd temple) shall far surpass that of even the former house (Solomon’s). This prophecy came about to encourage the older people who could well remember the glory of that former house of Solomon and who felt so downcast over what they were erecting. But God said, cheer up, the glory of the latter house will be greater than even the former one you are thinking about, and in that place will I give peace. See beloved, it is in that 3rd rebuilt temple God will give peace to the world. Haggai, through prophecy, is telling the people, be of good courage and build the present house with the means you have because the former house would be nothing in comparison with the latter house (3rd), and later God encourages Zerubbabel’s heart with still another prophecy. Verse 20-25, In that day, when I shake all things and overthrow the thrones of kingdoms, destroying the strength of the heathen, in that day, O Zerubbabel, will I take thee my servant and make thee as a signet: for I have chosen thee, saith the Lord of hosts!

 

Someone may ask, will the temple be built around the time the anti-christ makes his covenant? It could be, the Bible doesn’t say, But one thing is for sure, there will be a temple there when he breaks his covenant in the middle of the week. How long would it take for Israel, with modern day equipment to put up a temple? She could easily do it in 3½ years, seeing that the Jews around the world would contribute heavily toward its erection. Three years after the 6 day war Jews in America alone had donated one billion to the expense of the 6 day war, what will the Jews from the U.S. and Canada donate to this dream once it is announced the temple is ready to be built. Undoubtedly that is why God has allowed the Jews with money to remain in America and Canada, to pour in the money for that project when the time comes.

 

Did you know the only thing keeping the Jews from offering sacrifices today is he can’t get possession of that rock, however, when he does you can be assured that he will clean off that area and begin offering sacrifices to Jehovah and a temple will soon be going up. However, until that rock falls back into her hands they will never offer a sacrifice on any other altar, it is forbidden in the Old Testament. By no means will you ever see a temple of God erected on the same holy site while that Mosque of Omar stands over the rock. Therefore, it is important to note when the angel instructed John to measure the temple, he instructed him to measure the altar also. Why? Because the two go together and are inseparable in the worship of Jehovah.

 

PART 4 – DESECRATION BY THE MAN OF SIN

 

5 THINGS 42 MONTHS DOES NOT IMPLY

 

Back to John’s vision as we begin to bring our message to a close, it is the treading down of the temple area by the Gentiles for that special 42 months period which gives us a clue as to when this latter house will be erected, seeing it must be erected in time for the fulfillment of the last 3½ years, or 42 months, before the millennium. Please note the following things that the treading down of the holy city area for 42 months has no reference to: (1) It has no reference to Titus treading down the temple area and city in 70 A.D., seeing 42 months is nothing compared to the period of time the Gentiles trod down the holy temple area under Titus. (2) It has nothing to do with the Dome of the Rock being located over the holy rock, seeing the Moslem’s have stayed more than 42 months since the 7th Century. (3) It ha no spiritual application in the fact you could take the 40 and 2 months and somehow spiritually stretch them out over the 2554 years the Gentiles have continually trodden down Jerusalem until 1967. (4) It cannot be applied to the grace age temple of the Holy Ghost throughout the Gentile dispensation and (5) The 40 and 2 months the Gentiles tread down the holy temple area and Jerusalem cannot apply unto the many Gentile tourists, the Gentile news media from around the world who will be present during that period the temple (latter house) is being erected.

 

None of this can apply to the meaning of the 40 and 2 months Gentiles once again tread down Jerusalem and the holy temple area. No, beloved, this will be a special specified period of 40 and 2 months when the European Gentile beast power and its mouthpiece, the wounded 8th head, takes their final stand in Jerusalem, especially in the temple palace which has been erected for their Messiah, the Lord God whose names is Jesus, who is prophesied in Haggai to fulfill His latter house with his glory.

 

FINAL 7 WEEKS

 

Yes beloved, somewhere out in the near future, though Revelation11 does not give explicit details showing exactly what world conditions will develop that will bring that temple into existence, nevertheless somewhere in front of us is going to develop some worldshaking events in the Middle East and irregardless of what the U.S., England, France or anyone else wants to do, they are helpless once God is ready to act in behalf of Israel. Somewhere in front of us when time is just right that prophetic minded orthodox Jew is going to get his dream fulfilled as he receives that holy temple ground and that altar of sacrifice goes quickly into operation. That holy spot of ground will not fall in the hands of the political minded Jew who cares little about whether the prophecies of a holy temple is fulfilled or not, seeing his interest is only political and trying to persuade the world to see his vision for Israel, that is to be recognized as a nation among nations and to have a chance to live in peace and have prosperity. No, that political Jew is not back in Israel with intentions of fulfilling Bible prophecy to restore a temple, although that orthodox Old Testament minded Jew is there for that purpose, and one day that spot will fall into his hands and his dream will come true and when it does you can mark it down, Israel being God’s timepiece will once again begin to measure time prophetically. Prophetically time will begin to tick off as man will have only around 7 years to complete his Gentile dispensation and usher in the millennium.

 

A MAN (OF SIN) SETS IN TEMPLE

 

During that final seven years prophesied, especially within the book of Daniel which include the words of Jesus in the gospels as well as Paul’s writing in II Thessalonians 2:3-4, will spring into a reality and close out the final history of mankind as he heads into the millennium. According to Daniel 9:27, when the anti-christ makes his political agreement with that political minded Jew, and don’t think that spirit to sign that kind of agreement is not already resting on that politically minded Jew even today, it is! No, that doesn’t imply the Orthodox Jew is happy over the situation, nevertheless, that political minded Jew must begin to lean forward that office seeing that one day, according to Daniel 9:27, they will sign a covenant agreement with the prince of Rome. That political minded Jew in that hour must be willing to negotiate world trade, world peace, and prosperity for the survival of his own nation with Rome, and he makes this agreement with the anti-christ looking at it strictly from the political angle the anti-christ introduces his seven year peace covenant with Israel. (Daniel 9:27) When that happens, that will absolutely align Israel up with a political agreement with the Common Market nations. When that political Jew signs that covenant, ushering in that 7 year period, somewhere around that hour (I know not when as the Bible is silent to when only showing it must be ready for the final 3½ years) Israel will begin building her temple on that holy spot by the altar of sacrifice because these two pictures must run simultaneously and perfectly parallel, because the scripture declares in Daniel 9:27 that in the middle of that final prophetic week the man of sin will break that political covenant. After the breaking of that covenant, for a short duration of 42 months or 3½ years , Revelation 11:2, he will literally sit in that rebuilt temple. (II Thessalonians 2:4) Dear Soul, this is a literal fulfillment and not a spiritual as some think, for there is no way possible for the man of sin to literally sit in a spiritual temple within the grace age, because during the grace age you are the temple of the Holy Ghost if the Holy Ghost dwells within you, and at no time does the Holy Ghost and the devil occupy the same temple at the same time!

 

Isn’t it amazing that Ireanius, that 2nd church age messenger, according to the anti-Nicene fathers declares that the Christian church taught (around 150 A.D.) that the man of sin, who is none other than the anti-christ, will literally sit in the temple at Jerusalem! And may I point out, in that period, 130 A.D., the Roman Emperor Hadrian razed Jerusalem to the ground after another revolt and built a much smaller city dedicating it to Jupiter and excluded all Jews from the city, yet still with such a setting the early church was teaching a literal fulfillment to the man of sin one day sitting in the temple of Jerusalem for 42 months and IT WILL HAPPEN! He is the abomination of desolation standing in the holy place described by Daniel during the last 3½ years of Israel’s history, in a reign of terror described in Matthew as the worst days on earth. (Matthew 24:15) After he takes away the daily Jewish sacrifice, his days to set there are recorded in Daniel 12:11.

 

GENTILES ONCE AGAIN TREAD DOWN JERUSALEM

 

(Matthew 24:15) When you (Israel) see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet stand in the holy place, you who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Some might say this is a fulfillment when Titus destroyed the temple. No dear soul, Titus did not fulfill this because he didn’t cut off the sacrifice and allow something to stand in the holy place for 1290 days! Therefore, we see clearly Revelation 11:2 has yet a future fulfillment. It will only be fulfilled after Israel has made her political covenant with the anti-christ to fulfill Daniel 9:27. Then in the middle of that prophetic week the anti-christ cuts off the daily sacrifice, moves himself from Rome to the newly erected temple at Jerusalem where he sits for 3½ years. I might point out that although some of you might think that a pope would never leave Rome. Pope Paul has already clearly stated that for the sake of world unity he would gladly move his office any place in the world, and the Bible declares where one day that office will be moved, INTO THE TEMPLE AT JERUSALEM. When this sacrifice is cut off ushering in the last half of the 70th prophetic week of Daniel, that temple would have already been built and the altar already put into operation for the breaking of that covenant and the cutting off of the daily sacrifice by the antichrist is fulfilled upon that holy spot, and then you shall see the fulfillment of the abomination that maketh desolate sit in the holy place. What is it? He sets himself in th temple and cracks that Roman office whip for then the 8th Head of the beast, which was wounded unto death, is completely healed, and the world wonders after him, ready now to fulfill the 42 months or 3½ years which coincides perfectly with Revelation 11, 12 and 12, as he calls in his international police force, and don’t think Jerusalem and the holy temple grounds won’t be well guarded for that 3½ years. No, it won’t be Swiss guards there, it will be his international police force, and you can rest assured the millennium will never usher in until the anti-christ has run his 3½ years to coincide with the true Christ who ministered also approximately 3½ years.

 

TEMPLE DEFINITELY BUILT BY MIDDLE OF WEEK

 

This precise 3½ year period of Revelation 11:2 can only transpire after the temple and altar have been re-established. It isn’t necessary for Israel to wait until her temple is built before she begins offering animal sacrifices to Jehovah? Oh no, this was revealed when Israel returned from Babylonian exile. In the first year of her return the altar of sacrifice was already in operation although it was some 18 years later before Israel had her second temple erected. Therefore, you see once this holy rock altar is cleared away, that is the Dome of the Rock moved, there is nothing to hinder Israel from immediately beginning to offer daily sacrifice sometime before her temple should be erected. Recall in Daniel 9:27, as well as Daniel 12:11, it was the daily sacrifice that was cut off, not the temple seeing the anti-christ himself shall use the temple for his own diabolical purposes. Beloved, this 3½ years of Revelation 11:2 is a special period and can only apply in Israel’s history sometime after she had re-entered the holy city and taken full possession as she did in 1967, and by no means can you possibly spiritualize these 42 months nor can you stretch them out over 2554 years that the gentiles did continuously tread down the holy city as well as the temple area. Dealing with Israel you must keep three things in mind: there is a holy land and Israel became a nation on that land in 1948, there is a holy city called Jerusalem and Israel took full possession of that in 1967, and there is a holy spot which at this moment Israel does not have but somewhere ahead of us something will happen that will place that temple area into her hands, and when it does you may rest assured that Revelation 11:2 is just around the corner.

 

SUMMARY

 

God showed two prophets two future happenings concerning the rebuilding of Israel’s 3rd temple, or latter house, which would come in the latter days! Zechariah saw the two prophets in vision while Haggai spoke freely of the greatness of the latter house to be rebuilt in the latter days which would far outshine either house. And still, after all of this, there are people who want to spiritualize the events of Revelation 11, making it something to represent the gentile church when so many scriptures point to it as being a natural house or temple! GOD FORBID!

The Candle Was Lit

Turn with me to Revelation 2 where we shall endeavor to teach a subject concerning a certain influential church called Ephesus, which was founded in the first Gentile age on Paul’s third missionary journey. Here it was that God lit Himself a spiritual candle which shined throughout all Asia for three years. However, by the time this church (at Ephesus) was forty years old God has sternly rebuked it and threatened to remove its candle!


Our study will cover this great influential church at Ephesus of which God chose to name the first age of Ephesus displayed to the gentile world, especially throughout Asia, its beauty of spirituality, morality and character, her revelatory capacity, love and unity as it displayed the grace of God within their lives. And we see its location in Asia Minor will explain why God chose such a city to beam out His powerful revelation of truth from the mouth of His chosen Apostle , the apostle to the gentiles, unto all Asia. Thus founding the most important church in the first church age only to have received a severe rebuke forty years later and a warning if they did not repent their very CANDLE FROM WHICH THE LIGHT HAD GONE FORTH AND INFLUENCED ALL ASIA IN THE TRUE REVELATION OF CHRIST WOULD BE REMOVED. (Revelation 2:5)


EPHESUS became so great it shook the very foundation of the religion worshiping the goddess Diana, whose headquarters was at Ephesus, as people everywhere were being converted to the true way of life, turning from paganism. God even wrought special miracles from that place by the hands of Paul, the like of which he never did in any other place throughout all gentile churches. In this article we shall learn the sad reality that for God’s purpose, the usefulness of any outstanding church is approximately forty years, and we shall see how it applies to our own age as well.


OUR GENERATION AND ITS USEFULNESS


Therefore, after some forty years the Lord Jesus is demanding repentance from this great church and says if they do not repent He will remove their candlestick out of its place! As already stated, forty years appears from scripture to be the life span of usefulness to God in His true original program and purpose within a local church! Forty years also seems to get the usefulness of a man as well as a church irregardless to how long either may exist. His great drive seems to burn out in those first forty years of service, the same is true with a church!


ONLY 40 YEARS


Revelation 2:1-6, as we see this church some forty years after its birth as Christ returns to earth (on the Isle of Patmos) and instructs His only original apostle still living to write a letter to this Ephesian Church, which He has chosen to use as a model and the characteristics found within that church during those early hours signifies and displays the qualities found in the gentile churches during the first age!

 

 

JOHN ON PATMOS


Banished to the Isle of Patmos (for the testimony he held) only a short distance off the coast of Ephesus, John had been exiled to this barren, snake infested island in the year 95 A.D. when the church to whom he is writing called Ephesus is now forty years old and is no longer the great spiritual, dynamic, Holy Ghost led church it was in its originality under Paul’s ministry! Here is an urgent message to Ephesus from the Lord Himself to repent of what they were doing there which also was affecting all the other gentile churches in the same revelation! I WANT YOU TO GET THIS, Ephesus was the kind of church which was so influential upon all other churches within the true message that the other churches were greatly swayed and followed closely in whatever example Ephesus set before them (such as, what had only been a deed of action in Ephesus, because of their influence that same thing had already by 95 A.D. become a doctrine over in Pergamos. (Revelation 2:15)


LETTER FROM DISAPPOINTED GOD


We want to read this short letter which is straight to the point, and written by a disappointed God to Ephesus, who is now some 40 years old and is the very church He was chosen to exemplify the spirit of the first age, seeing that He also named this first age after this church. (1) “Unto the angel of the Church of Ephesus write these things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand and walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks: (2) I know thy works, and thy labor and thy patience.” These three words carry great weight as to what Ephesus has gone through during her forty years, as we shall later see. “And how thou canst not bear them that are evil: and hast tried them who say they are apostles, and are not, and hath found them liars. (3) And hath borne, and hath patience, and hath not fainted. (4) Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thy hast left thy first love! (5) Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works over; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thy repent.”


From this statement you can see why we have entitled our message, THE CANDLE WAS LIT! Where? AT EPHESUS! However, we want to discover what happened to this candle of revelation which was lit at Ephesus some forty years prior, who is now being told to repent and do their first works over. What were their first works? Who had tampered with this revelated light which was so influential upon all the other churches that whatever Ephesus did, caused the other churches in the message to follow? For instance, when Ephesus blazed with glory and was so Holy Ghost led it caused an influence upon the other churches of that truth to do likewise. When it did something unwise it caused others to stumble! WHY? Because at Ephesus the messenger of the first church age ministered and pastored here, and as already stated what eventually happened at Ephesus, which at first was nothing more than a deed or action had shortly become a doctrine within the church at Pergamos a short distance away who followed the influence of Ephesus, as did all the local churches of Asia and Europe. Somewhere something happened at Ephesus that affected that great spiritual light in its original power and effectiveness, hence causing another condition to not only begin there, but also develop within the other churches among the gentiles, and we shall see later what that condition was! After forty years Ephesus’ testimony is not as influential in pushing the mainstream of God’s purpose for her, as it was when her revival fires burned brightly. And if this church is getting such a severe rebuke from the Lord it is important we discover why He is so displeased with His MODEL GENTILE CHURCH, which is still affecting the worship and leadership of the Spirit within the other churches influenced by her action!


Continued on we read, (6) “And this thou hast, (there in Ephesus) that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitanes which I also hate. (7) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.” (Now remember this letter is being written unto the guilty church. Before you can apply any of this letter to the age itself, it must first be applied to Ephesus, the guilty church). We will also learn, by the grace of God, what it was she was guilty of because if the same thing happens to us who at the end of the age have now returned to the true original faith once delivered unto the saints, then we also are in trouble! “He that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life which is in the midst of the Paradise of God.” The reward for overcoming what hinders this church and all other assemblies will be Eternal Life (especially for those within the first age)! Therefore, whatever condition arose in Ephesus could easily be a matter of life or death, could it not?


THE NICOLAITANE SPIRIT


We have heard much concerning what Nicolaitanes are which is first spoken of in the church of Ephesus. Biblical scholars and historians of whom you read, all seem to agree with Nicolaitanes mentioned in Revelation 2:6, which the Lord saw in the Ephesus Church and furthermore saw was prevailing their influence over, not only that church, but the other churches of the message as well for even before 95 A.D. was not actually an individual group of people in Ephesus called by that name, Nicolaitanes, instead they teach it was a spirit which was being harbored by some there at Ephesus in that influential church, and their influence was beginning to create quite a problem throughout all the latter part of the first age! Let me say, this Nicolaitane spirit is blocking and hindering the definite move of the Holy Ghost in his leadership among his people in the congregation of the churches, and I want to emphasize something, I have yet to read one scholar or historian who has ever stated what promoted or what caused this spirit to take hold and ever gain foothold at Ephesus and their influence in turn caused other churches to take the same step or action insomuch that Christ himself stated Pergamos had made a doctrine out of this thing and was teaching as a doctrine the thing Ephesus was doing which to them was only a deed or action taken on the part of the ministry.


Yes, the scripture gives enough clues we can easily determine what happened that caused a Holy Ghost led church with an open fellowship such as Ephesus, to suddenly change from one mode of worship into something else which became known by the Lord himself as Nicolaitane deeds, which He said He hated, and furthermore the true saints in that congregation also hated!


I want to re-emphasize that this spirit which God hated ruling over His people in 95 A.D. was not present and could by no means ever be present in Paul’s day, nor was it present in 64 A.D., when Paul wrote his beautiful letter to the model church of that first age called Ephesus. Whatever transpired causing that spirit to show itself happened after Paul died, and later we shall read in Acts 20, when Paul gave his final address to the Ephesian elders, whom he was leaving in charge of the work at Ephesus, that this thing was going to come!


In order to understand more clearly what this FIRST WORKS of this church were to which they are commanded to return or else He will come and remove their candlestick, we must go back more than forty years to study what led to the founding of this great church.


PART 2 – PAUL’S FIRST VISIT TO EPHESUS


Time is drawing near once again for another Jewish feast in Jerusalem and Paul wanted to be present. No doubt it gave him great opportunity to witness to many Jews. Therefore, we note Paul leaving Corinth after having ministered 1½ years and takes with him Aquilla and Priscilla, crosses the Dardanelles Straits and comes directly into the capitol city of Asia Minor, the very headquarters of the Diana religion. Perhaps as no other city in Asia Minor this was the most influential. What was its name? EPHESUS! It is Paul’s first visit to Ephesus. On this missionary journey there will be no church founded however, as usual when Paul arrived in this beautiful, gentile city stooped in idolatry, where does he go first, straight to the local Jewish synagogue and is permitted to bear testimony of his wonderful, glorious revelation of Jesus Christ; not giving them too much during the first visit, nevertheless it has been enough to excite the curiosity of the Jews as they flock around him desiring that he stay and tell them more of this wonderful story. To this he explained he could not because he had to be at Jerusalem in time for the feast, nevertheless he promised faithfully he would return to Ephesus as he had been extended a hearty invitation by the Jews to return. Note, he does not take Aquilla and Priscilla with him to Jerusalem, instead, leaves them at Ephesus and journeys on alone.


WHY PAUL WENT TO JEW FIRST


Here is something interesting, have you ever noticed or wondered why in each gentile city between Acts 13 and Acts 19 Paul would always seek out the Jew first? Yes, beloved, within each gentile city Paul visited scattered throughout the Roman Empire there was always found a Jewish colony. The history or origination of Jewish colonies in gentile territory can reach as far back as 600 B.C. in the Babylonian dispersion. Jewish synagogues were established in each town, however, for the main seven feasts of which all Israel observed, the Jews would always go to Jerusalem to the temple. If Paul was an apostle to the gentiles, as he most certainly was, why did he continually seek out the Jew first? There are two main reasons.


BRIDGING THE LANGUAGE BARRIER


(1) The gospel was to go to the Jew first, (2) The Jew of that certain locality who had been reared in that area, knowing the customs and traditions and the tongue of these gentiles – these converted Jews could bridge the gap for the Apostle Paul to work his way into the heart or main flow of the gentile society in that area! As these Jews all spoke the original mother tongue, Hebrew, which Paul also spoke, they also were familiar with the language of the gentiles of their particular locality. Thus, God had bridged the language gap or barrier of all gentiles by permitting these Jewish colonies to be located in each of these cities, even long before he was ready to send his Jewish Apostle among the gentiles to preach the gospel in their language!


GENTILE LANGUAGES AND HEBREW BOTH AT PENTECOST


In Acts 2, we see how both the Hebrew and the national tongues wherein those Jews who visited Pentecost when the Holy Ghost came into the life of the believer played such an important role. The Jews from various nationalities who were visiting Jerusalem on this particular feast day testified how they had heard the praises of God coming from these Jewish Galileans in the tongue in which they were born! Acts 2 shows some 16 nationalities on the day of Pentecost. However, when Peter personally addressed all these Jews present, he spoke in the old mother tongue, Hebrew, the language in which all Jews regardless to which country they were from were familiar with.


CLEARING UP TONGUE CONFUSION


Therefore, I would like to clear up something that has been taught denominational circles – that the tongues in apostolic days were inspired languages in which these Jewish missionaries would speak under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit while they witnessed in these foreign countries! Furthermore, they say tongues ceased after the evangelism of the early church throughout the Roman Empire. To this teaching after the empire was evangelized in the first century, there was no more need for these tongues. However, this is not the purpose of the unknown tongue or language spoken of by Paul to the Corinthians which it appears many of them did speak. These are not tongues in which God permitted missionaries to speak while in foreign countries. The only time you find such a setting and this time was to preach the gospel, but to catch the attention of the Jew at Pentecost when God permitted those believers there to be speaking in some 16 foreign languages. Therefore, the tongues spoken there according to the Jews were their own native tongue wherein they were born and this is what aroused the interest of the Jews of these nations who were visiting Pentecost. However, when Peter preached the sermon, he spoke in the old mother tongue, Hebrew, which all Jews everywhere understand. No, tongues were not given for the purpose of evangelism in foreign countries, because as already stated, whenever Paul visited in each city he first visited the Jewish synagogue where after some Jews were converted through these contacts he was able to venture into the flow of the gentile society of whatever area he was in because it was these converted Jews who could speak these different dialects and were a great assistant to Paul. In short, by placing these Jewish colonies throughout the world of that day, God had already bridged the language barrier of that hour when the hour arrived He would send his Jewish apostle throughout the gentile nations of Asia and Europe to preach the gospel of Christ in their own language.


UNLOCKING THE CHURCH AGE


Watch closely the events now coming up surrounding Ephesus and the birth of the church which had great influence throughout the gentile church world for no less than 8 years. Aquilla and Priscilla, having been left in the city of Ephesus with these hungry Jews while Paul journeyed on to Jerusalem, did not seize the opportunity of doing a great deal of witnessing in this most susceptible field! There is definitely a reason why! Watch these events unfold as we near the birth of the church at Ephesus.


ONE ACT OF WITNESSING


Meanwhile, an eloquent speaker and lawyer named Apollos, had somewhere in the past come in contact with the revelation of Jesus Christ as had been taught by John the Baptist some years prior. John, you recall, came in the spirit and power of Elijah to forerun Christ’s first coming, baptized disciples telling them to believe on him who should come after him – that is on Christ Jesus. Apollos had come to this Jewish synagogue at Ephesus where Aquilla and Priscilla had an opportunity to hear him speak. He was powerful in the scriptures as far as his revelation had led him and he was more than faithful with what revelation he had, convincing the Jew that Christ was the Lord God in the flesh. Some of these Jews believed in his teaching as far as he was able to teach them, however, Aquilla and Priscilla, having been with Paul 1½ years or more, knew Apollos’ revelation was not up to date as Paul taught it. Note what they did! They were not like people of today, by no means. Aquilla and Priscilla took only Apollos aside (not his converts) and explained to him the way of God more perfectly (Acts 18:26). No they never did touch his converts; they never explained one thing to them! Out side this one act there is not one mention of anything these two did, yet truly there was a great opportunity in this area though Aquilla and Priscilla never touched it! Bringing Apollos’ revelation up to date, which would include the true name of Jesus, water baptism and receiving the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, Acts 2:38 was all they did, they in turn sent letters of recommendation by Apollos over to Corinth where Paul had converts and had pastored there for 1½ years. Apollos leaves and goes to Corinth where evidently from the letter Paul wrote later to the church at Corinth Apollos was very successful in his ministry there, (I Corinthians 3:4-8). Aquilla and Priscilla apparently discussed this revelation with no others, instead waited for the return to Paul to teach the revelation to those hungry Jews.

 

 

EPHESUS LEFT STRICTLY TO PAUL’S MINISTRY


We are now approaching Chapter 19 of Acts, the most important chapter of our study where we see Paul’s first convert in Ephesus which shall lead into one of the greatest influential churches in all Asia. Paul returns from the feast at Jerusalem, Acts 19:1, “And it came to pass while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coast of Asia Minor came down to Ephesus.” Paul is now back in Ephesus, but not at the Jewish synagogue, and I want you to watch every minute detail in this chapter for some of the most important developments as we shall now see some of the works unto which this church in 95 A.D. was commanded to return to in that first love. “Finding certain disciples..” (Whose disciples were they, not Paul’s, he didn’t have any new disciples in Ephesus). These men no doubt have fallen under Apollos’ influence . Although they were (Apollos’) disciples they will make a statement which proves Aquilla and Priscilla had not been witnessing to the Jews about this revelation, for these twelve say to Paul they had not so much as heard where there be a Holy Ghost! Apollos did not know that either until he met Aquilla and Priscilla. This shows the Holy Ghost would not permit Apollos to remain in Ephesus to preach the true way, because as you shall see, Paul must be the founder of this special work!


PAUL’S FIRST CONVERT


Knowing they were believers or disciples he asked under what were they baptized and they replied, “Unto John’s baptism”. Note, Paul knew all about John’s ministry. You see, the prophet John, even though he was the forerunner for the first coming of Christ, coming in the spirit and power of Elijah (Luke 1:17) was not continually preached upon throughout the early church. You can be assured that early church knew the role and ministry which John had played in the scriptures! Imagine Paul saying to those men after being told they were baptized unto John, WHO IS JOHN, I NEVER HEARD OF HIM!! No, beloved, Paul knew exactly John’s position in the scripture and he recognized that position although John was recognized in no more than he was called to do – ANNOUNCE THE FIRST COMING OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST!


Remember, we are approaching the birth of the Ephesus Church whish is in approximately 54 A.D., and it is in this period God is opening up what He calls the first gentile dispensation or age called Ephesus, and furthermore it is these twelve men who are Paul’s first converts in Ephesus that constitutes the birth of the church! Therefore, the Ephesus Church Age has opened with this church at Ephesus being in the center spotlight!


Reading Acts 19:4, we are told Paul explained to these twelve men John had truly baptized with water, declaring to all his disciples they should believe on him that should come after him, that is on Jesus Christ. Watch these events as they unfold as they are most important seeing the church come into its infancy. We are now about to witness something pertaining to the Holy Ghost which is only recorded three times in scripture!


GENTILES TO HAVE SAME HOLY GHOST POWER


God is preparing to unlock something pertaining to this thing of how people say you must receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost in a certain special way, watch this closely! Out of all the churches Paul has founded, whether it be Corinth, Thessalonica, churches in Derbe, Lystra or throughout Asia or Europe, not one of them expressed how a single disciple received the baptism of the Holy Ghost or what experience they went through! However, here in Chapter 19, Paul comes straight into Ephesus, meets twelve disciples and the first thing he asks is about the Holy Ghost. And notice, we are told how they received the Holy Ghost. There is definitely a reason it had to be in this manner because it is with this church God is officially doing something for the third time, opening His gentile dispensational church period in its first stage and the church will pass through seven stages before the end, according to Revelation 2 and 3. Here is the initial opening of the gentile church age as twelve men receive Christ in His fulness and become the first twelve candidates of the new church at Ephesus! The official opening of this church can not be just any old way, it must be exactly according to the true pattern, else how could it ever be the model and influential church that shall rise to such prominence under the ministry of the Apostle Paul within the next three years that all Asia and the gentile church world shall be influenced by it. No wonder Christ demands this church to repent and return to its first works in 95 A.D. It is because of that great influence and sway it held over the other churches of the age! Were she to repent, she would be influential in leading the others to follow her example!


EPHESUS AND THE 3RD OPENING


Thus, as we watch the gospel in action upon these twelve men, we are seeing the working of the Holy Spirit within that first gentile church age. That is why the Holy Ghost is so precise in every detail concerning Acts 19, especially those first six verses. And as Paul officially opens this gentile church age at Ephesus with these twelve disciples, it explains why Aquilla and Priscilla never started a church or fellowship through their personal witnessing before Paul returned. No, by no means, shall this be an ordinary church, for we shall see things transpire in this church that transpired in no other gentile church under Paul’s ministry, and furthermore we shall see WHY they transpired.


SOMETHING HAPPENS FOR 3RD TIME


The fact we see the messenger to the age, the Apostle Paul, take these twelve men and although they have been baptized once, they must be baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus and come into this thing correctly and receive the Holy Ghost, speak in tongues, and prophesy in order to illustrate there is absolutely no less happening here or being received as this gentile church age is officially opening, as did appear in the other two official openings found in Acts 2 and Acts 10 on these other two great occasions found in scripture, though many years apart! (1) When the Holy Ghost officially came on the day of Pentecost, infilled those 120 Jews in the upper room and the scripture declares, they spoke with tongues. I AM TEACHING SOME TONGUE EVIDENCE DOCTRINE, that must be clearly understood. I am merely showing you how on these three special occasions (only), some 10 years apart in each case He initiated the opening with the same power and presence of that same Spirit (His).


Although from Pentecost up to this hour it must be remembered tens of thousands had all received the same Holy Ghost, yet there is not one mention as to how any of them received the Holy Ghost only on these three special occasions is it shown, some 10 to 20 years apart! The purpose, as stated, is to show God is giving the same measure of grace to the gentile church and she will have the same Holy Ghost, the same revelation, and the same gifts as when it officially opened with the Jews.


LOCATION OF EPHESUS


Ephesus, where God lit His candle to light all Asia, was the capitol city of Asia Minor and in Paul’s day was a contemporary city to Athens, Greece, as well as Rome. As a matter of fact, the road from Ephesus which led around the Mediterranean Sea went straight to Rome. Thus came the slogan, all roads lead to Rome! This beautiful seaport city lay on the coast of Asia Minor facing the Aegean Sea next to the country of Greece and protruded down into the Mediterranean Sea, thus separating two areas of land by a large body of water coming from the Straits, draining into the Black Sea. Probably the most important factor of this city was religiously, seeing it was the headquarters of the Diana religion with its temple location there. This religion had spread its influence across all Asia from the city of Ephesus. Perhaps this more than any other reason is why God chose Ephesus to establish His church to bear such influence over all Asia as had the Diana worship from their headquarters in Ephesus. From here God would spread His true light of revelation throughout all Asia by His first church age messenger.


TEMPLE OF DIANA


Ephesus not only was the center of the Diana religion, but was also the location of the great temple of the goddess Diana, which had influenced all Asia religiously for centuries. This rich industrial city being one of great culture perhaps is why the headquarters of the Diana religion was established here and her worshipers spread throughout Asia Minor (and the world). Just as Athens, Greece, which lay across the Aegean Sea had those great Acropolis buildings dating back to 1600 B.C. and still further on many miles west stood that great ancient city of Rome with her many pagan shrines and temples being used to worship pagan deities, both male and female, likewise was Ephesus the third city being the headquarters of the Diana religion.


Undoubtedly this goddess has been greatly responsible for the tremendous growth of Ephesus due to the fact that the Diana temple was located within the city. This temple in its magnificent beauty required 200 years to complete, its dimensions reached 425 ft. long, 220 ft. wide, 60 ft. tall and was supported by 127 pillars. Yes, it was through this pagan temple that the worshipers of Diana of the Ephesians were successful in spreading their influence and worship throughout all Asia Minor. Therefore, can’t you see why the God of heaven would choose this very city to light His candle of true revelation and beam that light across Asia where in less than 3 years He had rocked the very foundation of this ancient (woman) religion! Perhaps more so than Martin Luther when he shook the Catholic Church in 1517, thus beginning the Protestant Reformation!


WORKING OF HOLY GHOST – SAME


Already we have been in Acts 19:1-6, step by step Paul’s conversation with the twelve men who knew only John the Baptist’s revelation of Jesus Christ. Taking these men, re-baptizing them in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, laying hands upon them and seeing these 12 Ephesians disciples speaking in tongues and prophesying proves one thing; God is giving unto the gentile church age that same full measure of grace with nothing watered down nor diluted in the way of the Spirit, but giving exactly the same full measure of grace issued to the Jews on the day of Pentecost some 20 years prior, and also to the household of the Roman Centurion Cornelius as the gentile age itself was opened in Acts 10, as his household received the Holy Ghost in the Holy Land ten years earlier at Caesarea as that second phase was opened within the grace age.


EPHESUS – 2 OUTSTANDING EVENTS


Furthermore, to show you as God is opening in Acts 19 the gentile church age at Ephesus there were two outstanding events which standout through the ministry of the Apostle Peter as Jerusalem, 20 years prior, that are similar to the two miraculous events which happened at Ephesus under Paul’s ministry demonstrating the power of the Holy Ghost given to the gentile church is exactly the same as that when the Holy Spirit lay strictly in the hands of the Jewish disciples at Jerusalem some years before Israel declared herself completely unworthy to receive any part of the gospel, remaining strictly with the Law of Moses and the temple worship.


Now to examine these two things which happened in Paul’s ministry at Ephesus which was very similar to two things which happened in Jerusalem. (1) At Jerusalem the very shadow of Peter healed the sick. At Ephesus came forth aprons, cloths, handkerchiefs, etc., from Paul’s body that was carried throughout Asia, and as that material was placed upon the body of the sick and afflicted, they were instantly healed of whatever disease they possessed, including demon possession. (Acts 19:10-12). (2) The slaying of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5 as they lied to the Holy Ghost concerning certain property which had been sold. The Bible declares fear fell upon everyone around and no man dust join himself to them for fear. Now at Ephesus we are told Paul’s great meeting held within this school building drew such crowds, coming from all over Asia (converts of the Diana religion) who repented and were saved, filled with the Holy Ghost and healed, and the name of Jesus Christ grew so strong and powerful, it is recorded a Jewish priest named Sieva had seven sons of which the scripture calls vagabond Jews (exorcists, fortune tellers, zodiac studiers). No doubt these seven son were most ambitious and would enjoy having a following of their own, had watched Paul casting out devils and observed the name of Jesus which he used was powerful against demons. These seven sons find a demon possessed man upon whom they use the name of Jesus to cast out these demons. Bravely they say, come out of the man in the name of Jesus of whom Paul preaches. To this the demon responded, Paul I know and Jesus I know, BUT WHO ARE YOU? With that the demon possessed man attacked the seven men, whipped, beat and stripped these insomuch they ran from the house, wounded and naked, (Acts 19:16)! Such an event was noised about among all the Jews and Greeks dwelling at Ephesus and (note this just as in Jerusalem) fear fell on them and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. (Acts 19:17)


CONTINUAL 2 YEAR REVIVAL (ACTS 19:10)


Following the conversion of the first 12 in Ephesus, Paul returns to the Jewish synagogue where he ministers 3 months and leaving there took over a school building of one Tyrannus where he ministers daily for two years, wherein all which dwelt in Asia heard the Word. (Acts 19:9-10)


BOOK BURNING


The true disciples of Christ began to multiply out of this idolatrous pagan woman religion as Paul was kept busy for a full three years, preaching day and night, teaching the unsearchable riches of Christ. Sins were confessed, heathen converts straightened out their ways of living and the Bible says those which used curious arts, a common thing in the Diana religion, gave up these things, brought their books before Paul who built a bonfire and burned them in the streets of the city and the price of the books was over 50,000 pieces of silver! Naturally this was shaking the very foundation of this religion of Diana insomuch that near the end of Paul’s third year at Ephesus he had almost crippled the craftsmen’s trade who made the little (woman) Diana trinkets, statues, things to be kept in the home of which the priest would bless. (Reminds you of another religion which has statues, images, prayer beads, etc., and the blessing by priests, does it not? Which is also nothing but a hand-me-down tradition). People throughout Asia were not buying these things from the craftsmen who had in the past had a tremendous business in Ephesus before Paul came.


SILVERSMITH TROUBLE


Demetrius, a silversmith, who made shrines of Diana, along with the other craftsmen who also had grown wealthy, now see their business almost shattered! Things have become so desperate by the time the people burn their books the craftsmen call a meeting to see what steps can be taken to stop Paul before he turns all Asia away from the worship of the goddess Diana.


Reading from Acts 19:21-41, we pick up the story showing Paul’s remaining days in Ephesus are limited. After the burning of the books Demetrius calls a meeting of the craftsmen of his trade telling them how the goddess of Diana has been made to be despised and if something isn’t done soon, her magnificence would be destroyed whom all the world worshiped (by Paul’s teachings). In one form or another this woman religion is worshiped throughout the world, one place she may be called Diana, in another Mary, and another something else. Verse 28 states when they heard this they were filled with wrath and cried, Great is Diana of the Ephesians. Verse 29 discloses the entire city was filled with confusion and taking hold of two of Paul’s traveling companions, men of Macedonia, Gaius and Aristarchus, the crowd rushed with one accord into the theater, and when Paul would have entered in before this mad, confused multitude the disciples begged him to refrain. This great amphitheater now became a mass of confusion as one group of the Diana worshipers cried one thing and another group cried something else, while the majority were not even aware why they were there!


SHOUTING FOR 2 HOURS


For two solid hours they cried GREAT IS DIANA OF THE EPHESIANS! The uproar was of such magnitude the town clerk who tried to quieten the confused, violent mob, assured them if Demetrius and the craftsmen had a quarrel against any man to take it before law for they were in danger, said he, of being called into question (by the Romans) for this day uproar. With this demonstration of Diana worshipers it seems Paul’s ministry in Ephesus after three years is finished. However, study carefully the entire 19th chapter of Acts for that great three year ministry where his time was spent as God lit this candle at Ephesus spreading His revelation light throughout Asia from this one lighthouse from Ephesus.


PAUL LEAVES EPHESUS


Paul left in Ephesus a church which was influential over all the other churches of the same revelation. Just as the great Goddess Diana supposing to have been an image fallen from Jupiter and worshiped throughout Asia with their strategic spot, temple etc., located in Ephesus, likewise did God place His beacon light in Ephesus not only spreading the light all over Asia from that one candle, lighting many fires, but was so influential it became the symbol of all churches of the first age. Therefore, is there any wonder Satan would especially attack this one church after Paul’s departure.


We note in verse 21, even before this great uproar brought about by Demetrius and the craftsmen against Paul, already Paul was feeling in his spirit his time was about up in Ephesus as he had a desire to visit Rome. However, before this could be accomplished he must first pass through Macedonia, Corinth, Achaia and other places before returning to Jerusalem and later visit Rome.


MESSAGE TO ELDERS


While at Corinth Paul decides to return to Jerusalem for the Feast of Pentecost, which by the way, will be his final trip, for here he will be captured and eventually, upon his request, be sent to Rome to appeal his case before Caesar. However, watch especially what he does here! Remember, he has left the church at Ephesus where he pastored for three years and that church became a light of inspiration to the gentile age during that period. Now Paul is so moved in the Spirit that he must deliver a final message unto the Ephesian elders themselves (not to the congregation). Elders are men who hold certain offices within the five-fold ministry. However, Paul does not return to the church itself in Ephesus to deliver this urgent message. Instead, on his return to Jerusalem he passes through Miletus, a town a short distance from Ephesus, and sends word to the Ephesian elders to meet him there. Here at Miletus Paul warns these men of certain things (Acts 20) and conditions which will arise at Ephesus in the church after his departure.


WARNED OF 2 THINGS COMING


He beings by saying to these men left in charge of the church and made overseers by the Holy Ghost – “You will see my face no more.” Naturally such a statement grieved the elders who dearly loved Paul. Nevertheless, Paul knew his personal ministry in Asia was completed and he would never return! The church at Ephesus had now been turned over to others, however, the three years Paul labored there he had withheld nothing in his teaching concerning this faith and revelation of truth that they should know. For the final time addressing the saddened Ephesian elders at Miletus who see the seriousness of this meeting, Paul continues by saying he must be at Jerusalem for the Feast of Pentecost. I go bound in the spirit but I know bonds and afflictions abide me in Jerusalem. How did he know that? The Holy Ghost was constantly witnessing this one thing to him in every city he visited. Such a continual witness could come only through the nine gifts of the Spirit which many, I am sorry to say, do not believe in today, nevertheless, were most prevalent and in operation in the assemblies of the early gentile church day! Paul told these serious minded Ephesian elders, AFTER MY DEPARTURE GRIEVOUS WOLVES SHALL DECEITFULLY ENTER INTO THE FLOCK AT EPHESUS, RIPPING AND TEARING THE POOR SHEEP TO SHREDS WITH THEIR FALSE REVELATIONS AND THEORIES (which were prevalent in that hour, mainly over the godhead).


Not only did he warn them to beware of the false apostles etc., who would come but GET THIS, men within their own ranks within the church would rise up at Ephesus and begin to lead away souls after their wild, fanatical teachings which, no doubt, they would declare to the local assembly to be revelations from God! It seemed the devil was going to turn loose with everything he had in the way of false teachers and bombard the very gate of this influential church after the departure of this great apostle. Paul warned them to watch for this for it would come, watch those two things especially!


PAUL IN ROME


Leaving the Ephesian elders at Miletus, he journeyed on to Jerusalem for the Feast of Pentecost where, no doubt, he desires to witness unto the multitudes of Jews. After all, it was at the Feast of Pentecost Peter won 3,000 souls…remember? Paul arrives at Jerusalem and, as the Spirit had warned him, ran straight into trouble as he was confronted by an angry mob who had cooked up quite a story against him. For his safety he is arrested by the Romans and placed in jail. The angry Jewish mob threatens to kill him, however, the Lord spoke to him in a vision saying, as you have witnessed of me in Jerusalem so also will you bear witness of me in Rome. Recall, he told the Ephesian elders he had a desire to see Rome! All these things have great importance because it was sometime after Paul reached Rome, around 64 A.D., approximately eight years after he had established the church at Ephesus he wrote his immortal letter praising that great church for the influential way they were known throughout Asia as a church of great love and influence. (Ephesians 1:15)


EPHESIAN LETTER WRITTEN FROM ROME


It seems in those first few chapters of that letter Paul touched upon so many of the great doctrines of Christ; GODHEAD, PREDESTINATION, SECURITY OF THE BELIEVER, oh yes, in Ephesians 4:30, we find him telling this church, Grieve not the Holy Spirit whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption! This was a later warning unto them for, according to his own prophecy to the Ephesian elders in Acts 20, Paul knew the time would come if they were not very careful they would grieve the Spirit. Roughly 30 years later we see the Spirit is grieved (95 A.D.) as he is rebuking the church saying He has somewhat against them and demands their repentance. Notice, in that great Ephesian letter Paul does not go into lengthy detail concerning these church doctrines. Why should he, he did that during those three years teaching them night and day warning all men to repent and flee the wrath of God! He had already taught these great doctrines to that church, withholding nothing! The thing I want you to notice in the Ephesian letter – there is not the slightest indication this spirit spoken of in Revelation 2 as deeds of Nicolaitanes had even begun to work in the hour of 64 A.D., in this great church which at that hour still remained with an open Holy Ghost led fellowship! It is evident in all of Paul’s gentile churches or fellowships as he is the messenger to the age, he promoted an open fellowship in the assemblies among the saints, yet everything was run decently and in order (I Corinthians 14:26 & 40). Paul’s anointed ministry and manner of life, and his zeal so inspired this church that their love, devotion, doctrinal teachings, zeal and missionary efforts became known throughout all Asia. Churches throughout Asia were formed, although not personally founded by the Apostle Paul, instead various people came and lit their fires of revelation off the gospel candlelight that burned at Ephesus, the capitol city of Asia Minor, which still remained that model church who influenced all the other gentile churches of that hour in the revelation of Christ in their manner of following the leadership of the Holy Ghost.


Thank God Paul never lived to see this dreadful condition in his beloved church at Ephesus which had developed in 95-96 A.D. Paul lived only approximately one year after writing the Ephesian letter before he was beheaded at Rome on Nero’s chop-block. Therefore, the Apostle Paul had been dead roughly 30 years when John received word to write to the seven local churches of Asia, Ephesus being first and received a rebuke that none of the others received because Ephesus was responsible for what happened-which affected that age and the other 6 ages as well!


ROME NEVER ACCEPTS PAUL AS CHURCH AGE MESSENGER


As we previously stated, Paul had left Ephesus for several years before he ever saw Rome. However, eventually he finally went to Rome where in 64 A.D. he wrote that great Ephesian letter, and at that hour the church was much like he left it. It is believed that while Paul visited Corinth after leaving Ephesus, he writes a letter to the Roman church expressing his desire to come their way that he might impart unto them some spiritual gift, (Romans 1:11-15), informing the church he was ready to preach the gospel at Rome also. It should be noted the church at Rome to which Paul writes from Corinth was already presently established in Rome, being neither founded nor influenced by the Apostle Paul, as were the churches throughout Asia Minor and some sections of Europe. AND GET THIS, it was the churches throughout Asia whereupon hundreds of years later who eventually became known as the Greek Orthodox Church or the churches of the East who after 800 A.D., severed all relations with the Roman Catholic Church whose headquarters was in Rome and who held sway mainly over the western churches. It appears the eastern churches could never accept a gentile pope that dwelt at Rome claiming to be from the line of bishops of whom they claim the Apostle Peter to be first Bishop of Rome, while all Asia still accepted Paul as having been the gentile church messenger to the gentile church (and not Peter), as it had been mainly Paul’s ministry from Ephesus pastoring that great work for three years wherein multitudes throughout Asia came to Ephesus and were converted. Therefore, the church at Rome which later influenced most of the European churches, particularly with that idea that whatever they did was correct especially in teaching the bishop of Rome to have been the successor to the Apostle Peter and not Paul who all Asia still was accepting as the church age messenger, and this conflict between the East and West grew stronger as it always presented a problem until this final break.


ROMAN CHURCH NOT ESTABLISHED BY PAUL


It appears from Acts 2 that orthodox Jews, and perhaps some gentile proselytes converted to the Jewish faith, were present in that great audience in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost when those disciples came out of the upper room, drunk on the spirit (Acts 2), and one of these languages the Holy Ghost was allowing to be uttered in the street of Jerusalem by Galilean Jews was that of a Roman tongue which caught the attention of some of the Jews from that area, and they were converted off the revelation of the Apostle Peter to whom Christ had given the keys to the kingdom and these had obeyed Acts 2:38 and returned to Rome where they established a fellowship of worship around this revelation. At first the fellowship consisted mainly of a nucleus of Jewish Christians until later it became a mixed congregation once gentile began to be added to the fellowship. Such a fellowship of Jews and gentiles had created a friction which Paul had heard about, and from Corinth he writes an inspiring letter to the Roman Church wherein he spares no punches as he knew his office saying, thou who sayest thou art a Jew, thou makest a boast of the law etc. (Romans 2:17-29). Certain things had leaked out from the church at Rome and had reached the ears of Paul. Paul, being the apostle to the gentiles, wrote a letter to straighten them out on certain things and informed them of his coming to Rome. However, it must be noted after Paul’s death at Rome he was never accepted as the gentile messenger to the age as he was in Asia. Furthermore, it was this European Roman church sometime after Paul’s death which began drifting into domineering ideas of Catholicism and never once lifted up nor recognized Paul to have been the gentile church age messenger of that period. Instead contrary to Galations 3:9, they adopted the Apostle Peter as their messenger and further pretended he was first bishop of Rome. Peter was not the gentile messenger nor was he ever in Rome, and it was that lingering influence of Paul’s throughout Asia Minor and Greece as him being the true gentile messenger which was so strong it, among other things, finally caused the Eastern Greek Orthodox Churches to sever fellowship with the Roman Catholic Church in the 8th Century! Paul’s missionary work throughout his three journeys had been mainly influential through all Asia and the eastern part of Europe called Macedonia, today know as Bulgaria and Greece.


EPHESUS, A GREAT LIGHT


How many can see God lighting His candle at Ephesus and the other churches of Asia Minor, (Revelations 2 & 3) coming to Ephesus to light their revelation from the one fire at Ephesus instead of Paul making personal visits into these various places and personally establishing the local works himself throughout Asia? Yes, they were all lit in the three years Paul, the church age messenger, was at Ephesus.


Remember, Paul, in warning those Ephesian elders in Acts 20, had stressed these two extreme problems or conditions which would arise sometime after his departure (apparently meaning after death). Grievous wolves would come into the congregation at Ephesus to deceive many, and he warned further that some of their own men in Ephesus would rise up and draw away disciples! Leaving the Ephesian elders whom he would never see again, Paul departs for Jerusalem and is captured, moved to Caesarea where he spent some two years, and during this time wrote many of his epistles back to his gentile churches. From there he was placed aboard ship and taken to Rome where in 64 A.D., he wrote that beautiful and inspiring epistle to the Ephesian Church which we note at that time was still a great church, walking in its first love and still in tune with God! Had not something happened somewhere after Paul’s death that swayed this church onto a different pattern of devotion, she would never have received the rebuked she did in Revelation 2, some thirty years later. Ephesus, that beloved church pastored by Paul the church age messenger to the gentiles, had set the stage and was Christ’s model church of the age. However, what prompted Christ to write certain things to rebuke to this church who had exemplified the spirit of love, unity and doctrinal stand of which Paul taught, happened somewhere roughly between 67-95 A.D., less than 30 years. What she stood for and exemplified, as Ephesus lit the age, could not be seen in the church 40 years after her birth!


A CHURCH AFTER 40 YEARS


Much can happen to a church in forty years which plays such an important role as did Ephesus. Conditions and events can develop to such a point within a church such as Ephesus, in 40 years which will determine her course and destiny as to the direction the church will travel in unity, doctrine, etc. Recall, any church such as Ephesus which plays a major role in God’s program, irregardless of how great it is to the age, if it steps out of line of God’s program He too will rebuke it! I hate to say this, nevertheless bring this over into our present age. After God has been gracious enough to re-establish us in the true revelated, apostolic truth as taught by those original apostles, let any church playing such a major role of influence as did Ephesus to her age and see where such a church in our age is after 40 years – WILL IT GO THE SAME ROUTE?


Sorry, but the 40 years span I particularly have in mind concerning this age is from 1933-1973, when something was accomplished within the state of Indiana which greatly affected the Laodicean gentile world! I am aware some of my statements could hurt, however, I am only interested in one thing – IS GOD’S WILL BEING ACCOMPLISHED? God never permitted Paul to live long enough to see what would occur in these local assemblies which were influenced by his beloved Ephesus, the model church to the age. If he had lived to see it, undoubtedly it would have broken his heart. Perhaps none of the other six messengers lived to see the way their church went after 40 years either! To think the aged Apostle John had to be inspired around 95 A.D., to write such a letter of rebuke to what was once one of the finest gentile churches in all Asia Minor! As a matter of fact if you will notice there was something wrong within each of the other six churches as well in which Christ addressed in Revelations 2 & 3. Although by no means were these seven churches all the churches in Asia Minor, why are only these particular seven chosen from the great number of churches? Nothing is said concerning the church at Lycaonia, Derbe, Lystra, Galatia, Corinth, etc., only these particular seven in Asia Minor. God has found fault with all seven and what happened certainly was not Paul’s fault. The blame lay with other people at Ephesus after Paul’s death. Although we have traveled 1900 years since Paul’s day no matter how greatly God may have used a man or his church, let that church choose to go another direction contrary to the true plan and purpose of God and it too shall be rebuked as was Ephesus the model church one it finds displeasure in the eyes of God!


PART 3 – LETTER OF REBUKE


Bear in mind, the birth of the church came around 54 A.D., and forty years later the aged Apostle John, on a barren, snake infested island called Patmos, is inspired of the Holy Ghost to write the most stern rebuking letter this church ever received! No, the condition present in 95 A.D., was not there when Paul pastored for three years and pushed that church into the very spotlight for all Asia to see as an example and follow.


John, forty years after the birth of the Ephesus Church is compelled by the Spirit to write certain things to Ephesus in Revelation 2, saying, “Unto the angel of the church at Ephesus write, saith he that holdeth the seven stars (7 messengers to the 7 church ages) in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks.” These seven golden candlesticks stood first of all for the revealed light of the seven local Asiatic churches who lit their testimonial light from the one light at Ephesus. However, we see this hold a two-fold meaning! These seven local gentile churches wherein the light was shining which had been lit from Ephesus, this light was the revelated light of Christ. Furthermore, each of these seven local churches exemplifies the Spirit of Christ which should be portrayed or projected and would shine throughout the seven gentile ages.


EXAMINING EPHESUS’ 40 YEARS WORK


To Ephesus, the Lord is saying, I KNOW THY WORKS. Works in this sense represents the deeds accomplished throughout the church’s ministry for the Lord over the past 40 years serving in the dispensation of the kingdom of God. However recall, as Christ observes that which He considered works that being accomplished for His name, He further notes what spirit their labor is accomplished in! Believe me, Christ is far more concerned over the human vitality or enthusiasm and devotion displayed toward the work which is done as they (or we) carry out our labor of love for Him in his service. In this Ephesus Church after 40 years, the devotion has become merely a thing of routine and not in the fervency, zeal and love it displayed in the beginning. Of this God was not well pleased!


Christ sees whether their labor (as well as ours) springs from a heart of pure love, zeal and devotion or whether it is merely something that has become a drudgery and constant struggle. Whichever, it will register on the countenance of the heart or spirit of the fellowship of the church. Ephesus, I know thy works and thy labor. Remember, before you can apply any part of this letter to the first gentile age as a whole, it must first be applied to that local church in Ephesus whose fellowship exemplifies that which is going on in the age at this hour! I know the effort and enthusiasm you have in time past put into the work to accomplish something for my name. I know thy works and thy labor or the strain under which you have performed your work. Why is it worded in such manner, because God examines the heart or spirit (of the church) which registers that strain or joy and enthusiasm in which the work is performed. Your effort and patience, see, all these words such as work, labor, effort and patience all link together in what they are doing because the moment you begin doing something for God that exerts action on your part, either you will face the works for Him with love and patience or it will become impatient, discouraged, desiring to give up and quit. And he says, I know thy works, the things you have accomplished. I know your labor and your effort you have put forth or the patience and the attitude how you faced up to the responsibility. Recall, he has reference to the effect these grievous wolves and the many within their own fellowship who have over the years rose up, teaching perverse things leading away disciples as Paul spoke of in Acts 20, who had left the fellowship. Constantly trying them who claimed to be apostles and finding them to be liars became quite a strain after awhile. The strain of such activity couples with the gradual loss of their first love and devotion was beginning to tell on this model church and it was affecting the spirit of the age among the other gentile churches also!


EVIL WAS HATED


Christ continues by saying, you cannot bear them who are evil. Still after 40 years they despised sin, corruption, evil of any nature, desiring to live clean and holy lives and hear the wonderful truth from God’s true servants. The Anti-Nicean fathers books cover that closing period of the first age as it goes into the second gentile church age. And beloved, in those early days, those men such as Ireneaus, Polycarp and others were strict. Today we really don’t know what being strict in Christian living is compared to how they taught it. This is a day when you speak concerning men and women appearances they take it so lightly. However, in that day you wouldn’t be fellowshipped or spoken to if you did not live and dress properly. One who didn’t live and dress according to the Christian testimony of that day was treated as an unbeliever! Because from your conduct and personal appearance, to them that revealed what you had on the inside and after 40 years we note Ephesus still possessed that loyal, fervent spirit within the church of standing against evil.


TRYING FALSE APOSTLES


Now we approach that part of Christ’s letter which closes in on the very purpose of John writing, the purpose which led to their dilemma as it spread its influence across Asia. After, he said, you cannot bear them that are evil, he continues by saying, you have tried those who claim to be apostles and found them to be liars. I wonder, beloved, just how many of these false apostles with wild revelations had come through Ephesus, falsely claiming to be apostles? Recall, Paul in Acts 20 informed the Ephesian elders they would be coming. Paul at that hour of informing the elders this, had been the only apostle to have ever been to Ephesus. However, sometime after Paul’s Ephesian letter had been written in 64 A.D., and he passes off the scene, many have come through pretending to be apostles with great revelations. Paul said grievous wolves and men among yourselves will rise up, not spring the flock, therefore, Paul was charging these Ephesian elders to guard that flock from such sheep killing wolves and dogs in disguise! (Acts 20:29)


Paul’s three year ministry at Ephesus, as he was the messenger to the gentile church age and through all God accomplished as he labored night and day, no doubt witnessed that Ephesian church to grow into a considerable size and influential work consisting of perhaps many hundreds of believers. Many had come through this church area in the latter part of these 40 years pretending to be apostles, for after all Paul had been an apostle with great revelation and these characters to be able to sway any weight upon such a revelated church as Ephesus would certainly have to pose as an apostle with perhaps deeper revelation to even interest such a congregation. To think what prestige it would be to these characters who wanted to make a name for themselves among christianity to be able to say: I PREACHED AT EPHESUS WHERE PAUL (THE MESSENGER TO THE AGE) PREACHED!


The first age was certainly the age of going forth of apostles as God spoke great revelation through them. There were the twelve who ministered to the circumcision and even throughout the region of the Roman Empire during that day. Furthermore, it was a day when a man spoke freely what his calling in Jesus Christ was. It was also an hour a man’s calling could be recognized by the evidence of the things which either went before him or after him that bore testimony whether he was such or not. It was an hour that Peter, Jude, Paul and the others could truly say, I am an apostle of Jesus Christ because surely Christ had sent each of them. Furthermore, it was an hour when it was established and written that such men as Judas, Agabus, Titus and Silas were prophets. Yes, it was an hour when man, called of God and set forth in the gentile church age in this five-fold ministry was not ashamed of his calling nor would back up from his office! Whatever the man’s calling, prophet, apostle, evangelist, teacher or pastor, the Spirit of God bore witness to it!


Recall further, it was a day when very little of the Word (New Testament) going forth had been written. Instead it was given out in an oral manner, spoken from the mouth of anointed men. Not until sometime later did the various letters of the New Testament begin to be written. Yes, beloved, this was an age of apostles when men went forth declaring a revelated Bible message and having authority from God to set things straight or set something in motion within the kingdom of God. Ephesus was that church of great influence wherein the candle was first lit for gentile churches throughout all Asian cities as they came to Ephesus during those three years of Paul’s ministry, and lit their candle thus returning to their own cities to begin their own fellowships. With Ephesus holding that influential position it is no wonder these false apostles and prophets after Paul’s death, would want to first go to Ephesus to make a name or stake a claim, much like in the gold rush days of 1849, when everyone wanted to go to California! Well, everyone who wanted some kind of recognition as someone outstanding couldn’t pass up the opportunity of going to Ephesus! These false apostles, of which Paul warned the elders, would come by and bombard the congregation with their revelations and over a period of time split and divide believers as they stood in the open assembly slipping in these wild revelations through their testimony because Ephesus, as well as all the churches at the time, did have an open fellowship in the assembly. An open assembly worship naturally presented a greater opportunity for these false apostles and those who wanted to have the opportunity to say something deceptive. However, remember it was also just as great an opportunity for the true anointed servants to say something uplifting as it was for the others to tear down! The true servants could manifest tongues, prophecies, etc., to edify the assembly. It must not be believed that every man who testified at Ephesus bore false revelation, by no means! God used this open fellowship of assembly worship to bless his saints as his Spirit could work among them, permitting a true uplifting testimony of revelation and blessing to be shared by all the congregations of that day, especially Ephesus. These false apostles felt if they will let me in Ephesus to say something they will allow me in almost anywhere to witness, especially after they hear I have been to Ephesus, AFTER ALL, THIS IS WHERE PAUL WAS! My, I have been to Ephesus where the messenger to the age stood and preached… What a boost to their prestige!


That is somewhat like it is in our day. An evangelist would come by certain churches and say, I know Bro. Branham; I was in a meeting with him; I have been in his tabernacle, leaving an impression on the believers as he desires to worm his way into their confidence with such smooth speech, thinking this gives him some prestige or some great anointing when perhaps if the truth was known they may have been in the meeting, however sat 40 rows from the platform! It reminds me of an evangelist who came through our area once declaring he had come from great meetings in Alaska and Bro. Branham had told him my church probably needed a good evangelist. However, later conferring with Bro. Branham I found out he said no such thing, he was only using Bro. Branham’s influence to get his feet in our door (oh, they still do it across this land). The first sermon was THE FOURTH MAN, an Oral Roberts speciality. How perfectly he had it memorized as I later saw this sermon typed written word for word in his Bible. It seemed, after the first night, according to him, our little building wouldn’t hold the congregation he would draw. Therefore, off he went a few miles away to Louisville to rent a larger building where he lasted only a few nights. Sure, he like so many others who sought Bro. Branham’s reputation and influence for their own advantage, was a good speaker. These characters worming their way into Ephesus were also good speakers, but that didn’t make them true preachers of the Word! Concerning this evangelist who came our way, we later found out he left town owing a bill for gasoline and the rent on the building in Louisville. I only use this one incident to illustrate how these characters travel around professing themselves to be great deliverance evangelists, using Bro. Branham’s reputation to further their end. Such characters should have joined Al Capone and John Dillinger, seeing they are crooks also!


When did these false apostles begin to come to Ephesus? AFTER PAUL’S DEATH? No, they wouldn’t dare come around while Paul was alive and try to foul up the lives of true believers, they knew better. This was an hour when men who wanted to be recognized spent much time studying the great doctrine of the godhead which Paul had taught to the gentiles. Nevertheless, it wouldn’t be long before some of these men, as Paul stated in Acts 20, would begin to get the idea this doctrine (along with others) needed to be dressed up somewhat.


Therefore, the absence of the original apostles from the field, as many were being martyred or imprisoned, left the field open for these evil characters or sheep killing dogs who desire recognition! It left the way open for these wolves to run rampant, tearing the flock of God to pieces. And where did it happen more than any place else – EPHESUS! She was overrun with these new off colored revelations concerning the godhead as these revelations would be flowered up and twisted many ways. I repeat, in those days within the gentile churches it was definitely God’s intention for these churches to worship with an open fellowship! As a matter of fact, it seemed within the Jewish synagogues there also had been somewhat of an open fellowship where a man had the opportunity to testify. Look how Paul testified in them! On various occasions the leaders of the synagogue would ask Paul if he had something to say. No doubt it was probably true also in the early church. These certain characters also had opportunity to say something as they pretended to be in some part of this fivefold ministry. However, they were seeking to take away from this revelation which had been delivered by Paul by placing a new twist here and there. Like Paul said they would draw away disciples after their way of teaching. Oh, but praise God, there were always those loyal saints who could still say, that isn’t according to Paul’s revelation when he stood here! There were those who would guard that precious revelation with much fervency although as stated not much had been written at that hour. Nevertheless, they knew it was not as Paul had taught it and they would say, you are not teaching it that way, so that makes you false! Be gone you false apostles, we don’t need your newfangled revelations!


Ephesus was definitely that drawing card of which these false ones needed to work their way into other gentile congregations across Asia, etc. If ever one place had received more than their share of false teachers in that hour it was Ephesus. Likewise did Jeffersonville, Indiana, receive more than their fair share when the prophet messenger was alive! It too, became a drawing card for every kind of religious card shark and quack (religiously speaking) who, like those false ones in the day of Ephesus, here in our day would also attach themselves to this message who wanted recognition. Merely let be noised abroad that Bro. Branham would be present at Jeffersonville for a few services and these would also be present in the Jeffersonville meetings (in the early days) distributing their little tracts which mostly supported their own particular idea or theory.


Later we will cover in this message how it was just such things as this which was directly responsible for BRO. BRANHAM MAKING A CERTAIN ORDER IN HIS CHURCH WHICH WOULD AFFECT THE SERVICES OF THE BRANHAM TABERNACLE ONLY, AND FURTHERMORE, HOW CERTAIN UNSPIRITUAL CHARACTERS WHO HAD ATTACHED THEMSELVES TO THIS MESSAGE, HAVING NO MORE LOVE FOR GOD OR HIS PRECIOUS TRUTH THAN THEY DID FOR HIS MARVELOUS NINE SPIRITUAL GIFTS (AND FRUITS), WHICH OUR LORD PLACED WITHIN THE BODY OF CHRIST, USED SUCH AN EVENT TO THEIR ADVANTAGE WHICH IN TURN AFTER NINE YEARS HAS SPLIT AND HINDERED THE WORK OF GOD AS DID EPHESUS SUFFER AS WELL AS THOSE EARLY GENTILE CHURCHES TAKE A BEATING FROM SUCH CHARACTERS IN THEIR DAY! That spirit is still here among the gentiles in an hour when God has restored his truth to the Bride of the Lord!


You have tried them who say they are apostles and are not and have found them liars and have borne and have patience for my namesake. Meaning, yes Ephesus, for my namesake you certainly have put up with much from these characters who seek to invade your open fellowship which I gave you and try to trouble you.


These false teachers coming mainly to Ephesus were working on the theory that Jesus was not the MIGHTY GOD in flesh nor as John declared him to be (Revelations 1:8) THE FIRST AND LAST OR ALPHA AND OMEGA! Instead, later it was from these forerunning false apostles or anti-christ spirit revelations that Christ was declared to be the second person of the trinity, a doctrine finally adopted in Nicea 325 A.D.! However, while the true fivefold ministry was on the scene they taught no doctrine! John declared they who confessed Jesus Christ was the anointed one and had come in the flesh were of God, in short meant this – he, the anointed one, was the very Old Testament God come in the flesh and any other teaching short of this revelation was anti-christ! Furthermore, when John stated they have gone out from us because they were not of us simply verified Paul’s address to the Ephesian elders in Acts 20! Paul, as did all the apostles, taught Jesus Christ was God manifested in flesh, II Corinthians 5:19, I Timothy 3:16, Ephesians 1 and Isaiah 9:6, to mention only a few. Every true convert baptized throughout Asia which came to that revelated light at Ephesus accepting Jesus Christ was baptized according to how Paul taught these first 12 at Ephesus, in the name of Jesus Christ. Paul taught the church whatsoever you do in word or deed, do in the name of the Lord Jesus to the glory of God the Father. (Col. 3:17)


ANTI-CHRIST SPIRIT RIDES


Apostle John’s writing in 90 A.D. (I John 4:1) verifies this as John teaches the church to believe not every spirit but try the spirits to see whether they be of God because many false prophets (teachers) are gone out into the world! Yes, by 90 A.D., they had already gone out. In this letter John tells the churches how they may recognize the true ones sent of God, opposed to the false ones who are nothing more than the anti-christ spirit which was already going forth mightily in that first age. John, in his letter, revealed how the people of the assemblies are being affected by men of whom he terms anti-christ agents, running about loosely teaching every kind of doctrine and revelation contrary to that of the apostles. John calls them false christs as he says, there are many anti-christs and they have gone out from us because they were not of us. Truly the devil was permitted to ride in that hour and come against Ephesus just as he has been permitted to ride in years past against Jerusalem when Judaism harassed the church there. However, here he is riding against Ephesus and he will continue to ride until he gets a chance to accomplish his work.


1ST SEAL – WHAT WAS IT?


Turn again to Revelations 5, where John, writing in symbols showed a white horse rider coming forth in the first age, under the first seal. Many within the church world believed the white horse rider to be the Holy Ghost riding in the first age, however, when the real meaning came forth in 1963, by the prophet to the age, it was revealed to be none other than the spirit of anti-christ riding in the first church age! How was he riding? He was riding parallel to the Holy Ghost in order to do his satanic work! If the Holy Ghost through men had already been accomplishing the work of God then the anti-christ will ride parallel to do the work of the devil. What else did the first seal say? The white horse rider went forth to conquer! And that beloved is exactly what he did by first sending out those false teachers to harass and frighten the already weakened church as they were losing their first love, causing the elders to remove certain congregational liberties of their open assembly to block these men from entering – this was only the first step! Satan knew once these men had taken this step, they believed it to be a good step in the right direction as they shut the door on these false teachers. The Holy Spirit was grieved, as Satan knew he would be, and slowly but surely through this first step of removing certain congregational liberties in Ephesus, the Holy Spirit was slowly pushed out of the fellowship as he became more and more grieved.


Nevertheless, five years later in 95 A.D., God could still see at Ephesus there were many who had remained loyal to the name of Jesus revelation as taught by Paul, for in this respect they had bore the brunt and had shown much patience with those characters and for his namesake had labored. Nevertheless, all this harassing by these false teachers had left its effect and begun to show the strain upon this church’s spirituality as it was undergoing such an exertion of strength struggling to remain faithful and loyal to that great revelated light Paul had left with them. Evan as late as 95-96 A.D., God could see they were still remaining loyal, true and faithful to that one name of the Lord Jesus Christ who was the Christ (but not some second person). “And thus had not fainted…” No, they certainly had not given up. Their patience had been greatly tried and taxed to the very breaking point with these characters but they had not given up! Although they had fought long and hard to remain true to certain doctrinal truths and because they were slowly losing their first love which was really going against them no in the battle, they were reaching a point of exhaustion, fright and discouragement over what these false teachers from the outside were planting, as well as those whom Paul spoke of would be working from within the fellowship to raise up from among them and cause people to believe their line of thought! Some of those over-ambitious characters, who, like some in our day feeling they have a call in their life from God, simply couldn’t control themselves until they had fully come into their ministry (as Paul taught the Corinthians) thus leaving themselves open to be invaded by anti-christ spirits helping to lead the church astray!


REMOVING CERTAIN CONGREGATIONAL LIBERTIES


The officials left in charge in the Ephesus church, had reached a breaking point dealing with these characters. They thought for the benefit of the church and the spirituality of the church it would be far better if they would make certain rules in order to keep out all this false and no longer have this open fellowship as it was through this, these false teachers were getting through to the people. However, remember by what they did, it not only shut out the false teachers it also shut out the true ministers, true gifts as well!


This was what Satan wanted, to get the order of the service changed because, as things were, he could never bring in a priesthood to domineer over the saints! These men, no doubt, thought the wisest thing to do was make AN ORDER AFFECTING THE SERVICES! An order or rule which would affect the worship of the local assembly. More on this later when we touch on the deeds of the Nicolaitanes, which Christ said he hated as well as did many in the church. Recall deaar ones, that which was done t Ephesus as this order was made, led not only to them receiving the rebuke, 40 years later but the age as well! Because what had only been a deed of action at Ephesus had become now a doctrine in other churches who looked to Ephesus and had followed their example, such as the church at Pergamos!


LOST FIRST LOVE


However, watch Christ now touch on that part which broke his heart concerning this model church. Nevertheless, I find fault against thee (remember Ephesus typifies the age) because thou hast left thy first love. What beloved had caused such an influential church to leave or loose their first love in less than 40 years? This church we know had fought evil, tried false apostles, etc., although when Paul wrote his Ephesian letter in 64 A.D., none of this which was not present in 95 A.D., had transpired.


As Paul, in his Ephesian letter used the illustration of the love of a man and woman for each other to illustrate the love of Christ and his church, allow me to use man and woman briefly to illustrate what Christ meant when he said Ephesus, you have left your first love (ME)! When a young couple falls deeply in love, throughout their courtship it is evident they only have each other in their sight. Their continual topic of conversation is concerning each other. Something inside their heart has drawn them closely together in so much they can now see nothing but each other. Following months of courtship comes marriage and after their honeymoon they must now begin to face up to those responsibilities which marriage has placed upon them. The first few weeks breakfast is wonderful. No matter if the food is slightly burned, their thoughts are still only upon each other. After work he is met at the door with hugs and kisses. However, as the weeks turn into months and months into years, with the constant strain of financial and other pressures, watch what happens! She begins to stop greeting him at the door in the evenings and that continues until finally for them life has merely become a routine, cooking is no more a joy – I will just fix anything, he will accept it! Recall, we are only using such an illustration to show how that Ephesus Church under Paul’s ministry 40 years before had such a fervency and such magnificent zeal and love for God it was still known in 64 A.D. throughout Asia as Paul commended her for the zeal and faith and her devout reputation to her spiritual husband. However, from the continual harassment, persecutions, ridicule and those things she endured from false ones, which at first when she walked in that first love and devotion did not bother them at all; they did not mind the things they had to suffer for his namesake as they were walking closely by his side, as time passed the continual drudgery of these men who invaded their precious open fellowship in the assembly with false testimonies began to have an affect on them, especially after they began to lose their first love as the illustration showed of the young couple when after a time of this continual harassment of obligations, their first love simply dwindled into a life of routine!


Where was that stamina, that first love, that devotion? Sure, Ephesus was probably doing about as much as she always had, that wasn’t the point – THE POINT WAS, HOW SHE WAS DOING IT! Now things were being done merely through routine AND GOD HATES A ROUTINE!


Yes, Ephesus you are probably doing about as much as ever only now it has become routine, return to doing those things for me in the manner you once did, full of zeal, enthusiasm, full of love for my Word, etc., don’t feel that you must do it, feel that you want to do it! Remember from when you are fallen and repent and repent and do the first works over, else I come unto thee quickly and remove thy candlestick out of its place! Be sorry for your present attitude of complacency; you are now doing things from routine and taking things for granted; I see no deep love and devotion in what you are doing. Oh, yes they still loved clean living, and they hated evil, but their love and devotion was burning low. They no longer receive that personal enjoyment that once they did when they could say, Lord, I thank you. That was all gone now, God isn’t receiving that anymore and that beloved, is what He wants! Remember He loved us when we didn’t love Him. Repent, Ephesus and go back to your first love, that original enthusiasm you once showed in your service toward me. Do what you do with joy and gladness, I know you have endured much: you have had every kind of teacher to come along; I know you have been torn to pieces but don’t let that destroy your love!


Poor Ephesus, the model church to the gentiles portraying the age did not repent and today Ephesus is no more! Earthquakes and invading armies ravished that capitol city and its inhabitants. History records how the Moslem world conquered all Asia, including Ephesus. One Moslem leader from Egypt came to Ephesus with his armies and massacred its inhabitants. Such things caused this city of Ephesus to be laying waste and in desolate ruins, and today only a few illiterate tribes dwell in this area who can only reminisce of Ephesus and her former day of great culture and learning. No longer is Ephesus that city of which you could hear the shouts of joy of these early Christians during the first age under Paul’s influence when the books of idolatry were burned in the streets! No longer is she that city which had a stout, stalwart church whose gospel light caused all Asia to walk in truth. Instead today she is nothing but ruins of her former glory. Sad but true, the candlestick remained no longer lit, nor did it continue to shine a true revelation for Ephesus.


NICOLAITANES DEEDS


(1) WHAT WERE THE NICOLAITANES? Something else after 40 years was seen in Ephesus by the Lord of which He said He hates as well as did many of the people. But this thou hast there that thou hatest, the deeds of the Nicolaitanes. As we previously stated, the Nicolaitanes were not a group of people or a sect of people called by this name within the Ephesian Church. Bible scholars and historians alike teach by breaking the word apart that Christ used – NICO means to conquer, LAITANE, the laity – therefore Nicolaitanes means CONQUER THE LAITY or congregation. YES, it is one thing to know that this Nicolaitane spirit was a conquering spirit from the ministry ruling over that church which also affected the age, and furthermore affected everyone of the next six ages, including our present age until the very end. We further know, this spirit that came upon the elders (ministers) later led the church away from the fivefold ministry as God had set it in the church and led it into a domineering priesthood who carried the church into Nicea 325 A.D., and on into the Dark Ages under a Trinitarian doctrine! Yes, we know what eventually happened because this spirit got into the church. The important question I ask each reader as we read together between the lines: WHY WAS IT EVER THOUGHT BY SOME PEOPLE AT EPHESUS THAT SUCH A SPIRIT OVER THE CONGREGATION WAS DEEMED NECESSARY? WERE THEY NOT HAPPY IN THEIR OPEN FELLOWSHIP, SHARING THE GREAT BLESSING OF GOD TOGETHER IN TESTIMONY, ETC.? Then why was such action deemed necessary? Nevertheless, what happened played right into the hands of Satan as some 400 years later, through a priesthood, he carried the church into the darkest ages known to church history! Christ is rebuking this church whose influence is affecting the age because He didn’t want the church to go this route and demands the church repent and return to its first works – of which it did not!


For a period of time let us examine more in detail what actually caused this conquering spirit in the first place to ever take hold of the ministry. Why did the ministry deem it necessary to take such action which involved the removing of certain congregational freedom of the people? Recall, these deeds, hated by Christ, were caused from the action of someone. No, it wasn’t the janitor nor from the congregation!


At first no doubt that conquering spirit was only upon a certain portion of ministry at Ephesus, and recall what was done was not accomplished over night. I am sure those men’s idea to do this thing was not on the spur of the moment. There was a condition developing in the church of which the ministry thought necessary action on their part should be taken to curb this serious problem.


Whatever these deeds were in their accomplishment had greatly hindered and displeased God, and furthermore will bring the church into a spiritual decline of which Christ will find no pleasure.


Ephesus, that influential church, having now that domineering spirit of the ministry ruling over the laity, had all eyes of the other gentile churches walking in the same message or revelation throughout Asia Minor looking upon her in such a way they too according to scripture had been influenced to follow the same procedure or take the same precaution though curtailing certain congregational liberties with their churches. However, what is so pathetic, the deeds which occurred here at Ephesus (though not a doctrine) were something that would spread everywhere, especially as we see the Pergamos Church before 95 A.D., which , by the way, would be the gentile church in Asia Minor to exemplify in spiritual type what the 3rd church age would be like as it closed out, going into the 4th church age, Thyatira. Pergamos, as we are told, wasn’t just doing deeds, they had already taken the deed of action at Ephesus and made a doctrine of it! They were teaching it, they were putting it into practice and other churches would be following their example!


(2) DEEDS OR FIRST STEP OF THIS CONQUERING SPIRIT – What is the definition of a deed? Webster Dictionary defines a deed as: a thing done, or the act of doing something, or it is action expressed. Through Paul’s lifetime there was no such thing as the deed of the Nicolaitanes, therefore, this conquering spirit only appears sometime after the death of the first church age messenger and somewhere before 95 A.D. Therefore, it is here we must read between the lines using what scriptural knowledge we already have to determine what took place in less than 30 years. We are sure something definitely happened at Ephesus which necessitated action on the part of the elders of whom Paul declared the Holy Ghost had made overseers of the flock to guard them, Acts 20:25-31. Why had this conquering spirit gotten upon the ministry who were already weakened by the continual harassing of the false apostles, false revelations, etc. What promoted this spirit to act? These are the things which hold the secret to the deeds of the Nicolaitanes. No, it is not simply enough to know that Nicolaitanes was a ruling, domineering spirit over the congregation by why was it ever deemed necessary by this church ministry that a spirit of this nature act or perform the thing called a deed? No doubt as the continual harassment of these false teachers who needed Ephesus as a launching pad into influential prestige among the other churches following in the message whereby they might be looked up to as some great person, and the fact Paul spoke of such teachers as heretics of which he said, after the first and second admonition reject. Titus 3:10, could be the very things which prompted the elders to take this first step they did in removing certain congregational freedoms and liberties. Yes, it is true Paul said reject such characters as this, however, no where did he teach to change the order of the church or remove certain congregational liberties by which the people were being so greatly blessed in order to stop the appearance or shut the door on these anti-christ spirits parading through the gentile church world!


SEARCHING FOR SHORTEST EFFECTIVE ROUTE


Get this, the leadership of the church has grown tired, become exhausted and weakened over this continual bombardment of false ideas and testimonies and with their first love being extinguished, there seems only one thing to do, that is shut the door on this stuff which has caused such heartache. Instead of these men at Ephesus relying upon the wisdom of God through His nine gifts of the spirit as they had done in the past to expose the thing as error, they now look only for the shortest and easiest route to eliminate all such things from the congregation.


Through their elimination process they not only shut the door on the false, they shut the door on everything that comes along. Their feeling is, there is so much false going on we will not allow anyone to preach here we personally do not know. Beloved, when they closed the doors noone was allowed to preach except the ministry already in there! Slowly but surely, the Holy Spirit is now beginning to be dampened and the precious 9 gifts of the Spirit which had edified, uplifted, instructed and revealed many things to the congregation, now begin to dwindle as the church is losing its first love and spiritual eyes! Yes, it all began as an action or deed on the part of the elders to curb a condition which had prevailed for some time and to curt this action, rather than brand these men as heretics, notify congregations they had left the faith, call them by name as Paul did, (I Timothy 1:19-20, II Timothy 2:17-18) they took the easy route and shut the door on everything which grieved the Spirit of God more and more until finally in 95 A.D., they received this letter from God himself demanding their repentance! No you can’t blame this deed on the congregation, janitor or someone of that nature, the blame goes directly to the ministry who was looking for an easy way out of this dilemma, an act which at first seemed harmless. Correcting the problem was fine, that should have been done! What grieved God was the method used in eliminating their problem. In the long run it had proven to be a trick of Satan for the long range program which would end in the Dark Ages! These elders could not see that at the time, seeing they had already lost that close fellowship and communion with Christ as He informed them they were leaving their first love. That with the fact they were running scared caused them to take away certain congregational liberties to curb their problem.


SATAN AND HIS SCARECROWS


Recall, when Satan desires to catch the church in a plot or snare he will always throw out a few scarecrows to get the people’s attention looking in another direction as he runs through the door and lays his trap, while all the time the thing or object the people have been watching was nothing other than Satan’s scarecrow! Yes, the objective is to get you to look away while he runs past and leads you into the trap he has set for you. God had taken Paul and in three years practically crippled Satan’s kingdom throughout Asia, beginning at Ephesus. This religion which highly exalted a woman called Diana lost untold converts to the new revelation of Jesus Christ. Satan would not take such a blow sitting down, instead he sought to return the people back into a false religion wherein within less than 600 years he had succeeded to bringing in a priesthood to replace the fivefold ministry God had set in the church, and slowly the people are turned down the revelation of Paul back to a pagan religion where the center of the religion is another woman whose name, this time is not Diana, but Mary! Such an act on the part of the elders had grieved the Spirit, (Ephesians 4:30) who could no longer work freely among His people through His nine gifts of the Spirit nor His gifted fivefold ministry outside this particular body of fellowship. Nevertheless, it was the feeling of the elders at Ephesus because the fellowship there was so open it represented such free access for these false teachers, apostles, etc., and even those among themselves to rise up and do much harm to the body. Their manner of worship which Paul had left to them was making it too simple for these false teachers to gain access of standing in the congregation testifying to their false theories. What they were going to do was shut the door on all this.


OTHER CHURCHES FOLLOW EXAMPLESHIP


Satan could sacrifice the loss of the opportunity to invade the privacy of the church through the false teachers seeing that was nothing but a scarecrow anyway to drive these men into this excited state of action because Satan knew only too well, it would curb and eventually cause this God given leadership, of which route God had chosen to bless his people to leave the scene also. The eyes of all the church world was upon Ephesus (especially Asia) seeing the messenger to the age had pastored here and the feeling from the other churches was, if any church in the message knew the leadership of God for the hour, it must be the church at Ephesus. Naturally, the other churches facing somewhat the same problem, though not nearly the extent Ephesus was, thought it proper procedure to follow the EXAMPLESHIP of Ephesus. However, what was only a deed or act of doing something at Ephesus, certain other churches took this deed of action and went so far as to make a doctrine of it! That which was only a mere deed at Ephesus became a doctrine at Pergamos before 95 A.D.


HOW NICOLAITANE SPIRIT DREW STRENGTH


A moment ago we stated after the door was closed at Ephesus and other churches followed their example, and the Spirit of God could no longer have control of their services; where once the great blessing of God had been present, soon became a vacuum. We know a vacuum does not stay empty, something will fill its place and to take its place or fill the vacuum came the necessity to place more and more emphasis upon the ministry, lifting it higher and higher.


Why was this? Recall, the people of Ephesus are mainly converts from that once powerful Diana religion and in their heathen ways before converted it was a normal procedure to allow a heathen priest to rule and domineer their life. Their pagan background of priesthood is responsible as they had been taught to place the priest of Diana upon a pedestal and highly exalt them. Thus the convert having turned to Christ after taking such an open beating from these false teachers, and seeing how the elders have now taken this step they feel will protect them as this deed became an act on their part to shut out this kind of spirit whereby it may no longer attack them or at least they wouldn’t have to put up with it, now they began to exalt the ministry!


FROM HOLY GHOST LEADERSHIP TO MANMADE LEADERSHIP


As the nine gifts of the spirit fade from the assembly and the joy leaves as well, the program of the church slowly begins to change! Now instead of Holy Ghost leadership it becomes man’s own carnal leadership and ceremonial rituals. No, it did not immediately become a priesthood, however, these men began to steer the course exactly like that of the priesthood until it became a form, day in and day out. Gifts began to vanish from the assembly, as well as true revelation which had fed their hearts. Slowly but surely this all created a vacuum. It creates a hunger in some but a satisfaction in others, because you always have that element of people who wouldn’t know a revelation from a theory. Revelation doesn’t concern them, they are only interested in a short sermon in order to get out quickly, to go home! No, let it be understood they have not as yet taken the attitude or set themselves up as priests, however, they are taking on a priestly attitude in the way they handle things. Month after month this continues and that which first a few men did to correct a situation as the church came under attack by the anti-christ spirit, the church now begins to become more motivated and controlled by a certain party of men.


Ephesus reaches a standstill. That love which once they had – diminishes, as Ephesus is now controlled by this Nicolaitane spirit and the ministry which once came through those doors to take the great congregation onward into new heights of the Spirit is heard no more. Satan has set his trap which he will spring several hundred year later at Nicea Council 325 A.D.! This conquering spirit, or deeds of the Nicolaitanes, took hold of the congregation as they no longer were a congregation taught by the revelation of the Spirit. The Spirit now grieved can no longer move among them. Satan had now thrust his dart to the very heart of the church and spiritually killed it, which was his main objective. Now can you see the DEEDS OF THE NICOLAITANES and what caused it? It was caused by those minor anti-christ spirits continually harassing the church until it forced the church to do something, either to rely completely upon God and His inspiration or take the easier way and rely on carnality and the inspiration of the devil who had built a plot to bring the church to naught.


PERGAMOS MAKES DOCTRINE


No sooner had Ephesus done what she did and Pergamos heard about it. Pergamos now becoming more worldly minded each day, took this and made a doctrine out of it, teaching it as a mandatory thing! Because of that spirit, beloved, the devil used Pergamos’s doctrine because recall, Pergamos exemplifies the 3rd Church Age. It was that very spirit which sat at the Nicea Council, held a few miles from the coast of Pergamos in 325 A.D., when, of all people, Constantine the Roman Emperor gathered all the bishops together for a settlement on the doctrine of the Godhead! That spirit which was at Ephesus became a doctrine at Pergamos sewing the seeds and building the groundwork in that universal (priesthood) ministry whereby at Nicea the ministry which started in the first church age of apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers and evangelists was not something of the past! Church rituals had been manufactured to fill the vacuum of true worship and freedom of the moving of the Spirit. And get this, that great revelation of the one God as taught by the Apostle Paul at Ephesus slowly is covered over by the theory of two other persons in the Godhead. That church which was a great light and where God lit his candle to shine across all Asia, before 155 A.D., had already accepted and begun to teach and baptize into the Trinitarian theory! HOW ART THE MIGHTY (CHURCH) FALLEN!


PART 4 – AFTER 1900 YEARS HAS HISTORY REPEATED ITSELF?


How well do I remember back before 1955, the Tabernacle in Jeffersonville, Indiana, a church and a lighthouse that I feel served in this age to the gentile Laodicean Church Age the same direction and purpose as did that of Ephesus where God lit his candle in the first age. A church that possessed great revelation due to the fact the messenger to the Laodicean Church Age, the final age, stood and taught the revelation of truth as did the Apostle Paul, fulfilling the office of Malachi 4:5-6, Revelation 10:7, as he was bringing a people back unto the true revelation of the Word.


EARLY DAYS AND OPEN FELLOWSHIP


How well do I recall those early years when one was permitted to shake hands within the church with his brother or sister, something that is of a scarcity among people of this message today. It was an hour when the service had finished, it was not thought strange to see the prophet himself standing in the middle of the church aisle, inside the house of God, perhaps with a dozen people standing around him as he told them of the goodness of God, many times until after 11 o’clock when finally everyone would go home. However, these are scenes that are witnessed no more at this great lighthouse to the gentile age. New rulings have long since gone into effect, however back in those early days, that is before the Tabernacle actually became a prominent drawing card and known around the world as that of Ephesus, and before all these off-color characters (spiritually speaking) began to crown into the picture who forced the Branham Tabernacle to make an order removing certain congregational liberties which affected everything from the back seat to the pulpit. WHY? Because certain things had gotten completely out of hand or completely out of scriptural order in the church.


AFTER 9 YEARS – LOOK!!


May I say the remarks I will make are not made because I am bitter or have some personal ax to grind with anyone. My only interest is, ARE WE OBEYING THE WORD OF GOD? Did you know after nine years of such an order that was produced in the Branham Tabernacle to eliminate many problems which had arisen within their own congregation as certain people were taking far too much liberty causing an extreme amount of confusion and resulting in an embarrassment upon the ministry and the lighthouse itself and churches everywhere feeling, as did Pergamos in the first age, that they too must insert this order, not actually knowing why only that the prophet had placed it within his own church in Jeffersonville, such assemblies are dead having no more leadership of God than the Roman priesthood, who, in the beginning destroyed the original fivefold ministry set in by God and commanded to be left in force until this ministry had brought us all into the perfect unity of the faith, (which has never yet been accomplished) and secondly killed the gifts of the spirit which led and blessed and instructed those first assemblies. After nine long years these assemblies who took it upon themselves to copy or patten themselves after the Branham Tabernacle in respect to a CHURCH ORDER which was being used strictly for a punishment upon an unruly segment of the congregation has killed all movement of the Holy Spirit in their assemblies! For since then it has been difficult for the Spirit of God to find freedom in such congregations as these, to operate His gifts and being the Spirit He is, one easily grieved, (Ephesians 4;30) most of such assemblies have become strictly led only by certain individuals within the congregation. Today, it has reached the point that few in this message know the difference between CHURCH ORDER and SCRIPTURAL ORDER IN THE CHURCH.


SCRIPTURAL ORDER IN CHURCH, WHAT IS IT?


WHAT IS ORDER IN THE CHURCH? It is anything sanctioned by the Word of God! Anything the Word of God sanctions is perfectly in order in the church until certain individuals within the congregation oversteps those scriptural God given privileges within a fellowship and must undergo correction, as what happened in the Branham Tabernacle more than nine years ago. May I say, the prophet was perfectly entitled to whip his unruly children of the church in any manner he saw necessary to discipline them, however, for someone else to take this deed of action by the Branham Tabernacle and the prophet himself, place it in their own church, teaching it as a doctrine as they did in Pergamos saying, all churches and pastors who do not follow this procedure are not in the message, nor in the bride of Christ, is going too far! The day any individual tells you, you must whip your church children in your congregation as did the prophet sone nine years ago when there is no cause for you to do likewise, seeing your problem is not the same as was his, you don’t have the lighthouse that reached across the gentile world; you don’t have these characters and certain individuals overstepping their scriptural liberties within the congregation, and for some individual to say unless you do the same thing you are not in the message, and take that order and use it as a whip or a means to frighten people and churches into a certain line of thought which can lead only to total spiritual disaster and a complete driving away of the liberties of the Spirit among his people when there is no cause whatsoever, is to play into the hands of Satan to destroy the very revelation of truth which has delivered unto a people in this hour to place them back within that same early church fellowship with the Holy Spirit they had in the days of Paul and the early fivefold ministry.


Therefore, the CHURCH ORDER, which was merely a deed of action used in order to correct certain problems developed in one church, became a DOCTRINE and a guideline to others as to whether or not you are in the body of Christ or in the message of the hour unless you yield and accept it as a DOCTRINE into your congregation accepting those certain regulations governing the gifts of the Spirit, which was one of the major problems in the Branham Tabernacle – when you don’t even have any gifts of the Spirit in operation WHY WOULD YOU NEED AN ORDER TO REGULATE THEM? Don’t you know a saddle is to be put upon a LIVE HORSE and NOT A DEAD WOODEN DUMMY!! Unless your people have gotten completely out of order, why would you want to punish them by taking away their liberties as so many did? Is there any wonder the Spirit of God was so grieved whereupon nine years later these churches who accepted this as a doctrine has driven the Holy Spirit far from their idea of worship! Yes, beloved, we have reached the point today, nine years later, certain men have taken it upon themselves to push this church order which could only be applied to one place and that was THE LIGHTHOUSE OF THE AGE! Men, first of all, who did not even have enough spirituality and God given leadership about them to know what they had in their minds of doing would kill every precious assembly, driving out the Spirit and the gifts as they used it for a whip or a club over people’s head! There is nothing one of these characters could have done that could have pleased Satan more! They did not seem to have enough spirituality to know to leave the order where it belonged or had been originally placed in the beginning! Therefore, we have reached the place that thousands know what the CHURCH ORDER was (as it was used for a correction rod) but they DO NOT KNOW WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES CONCERNING THE SCRIPTURAL ORDER OF THE ASSEMBLY.


WHAT IS ORDER IN THE CHURCH? It is anything that has a scriptural O.K. on it! THAT IS TRUE BIBLICAL ORDER IN THE CHURCH! If it is scriptural praise, it is order in the church! If it is preaching, it is order in the church; if it is singing, it is order in the church; if it is gifts being divinely operated by the Spirit, it most certainly is order in the church. WHY? Because it is all scripturally sanctioned and okayed by the Word of God. That alone is what makes it order by the church. However, and don’t ever forget this, because this is partially what happened at the Branham Tabernacle causing that order to go into effect – if anyone is misusing any of that mentioned above or anything else of a scriptural nature whether it be praise, singing, preaching, prophesying or whatever then it becomes an act or deed of necessity to correct any misusage of that which has already overstepped its spiritual liberties!


MANY MISUSED FACTORS PROMPTED CHURCH ORDER


Therefore, as I stated earlier, in those years before the 60’s when the Branham Tabernacle had not become such a prominent drawing card like that of Ephesus and every so-called preacher with every kind of idea had not as yet linked himself into ths unspoiled picture, I can well remember for example, standing in the vestibule within the old building as Bro. Branham had delivered a lengthy sermon on some major Bible teaching that morning and we would be gathered back in the evening for the night service when in those days they came from far and near, from the East, West; from Texas to Maine, Canada etc., and there would always find certain characters standing – blocking the hallway, handing out tracts which would pertain to their own personal idea. Never will I forget one particular evangelist standing there one night in the vestibule with his revelation on HOW MANY WERE ON THE CROSS AND EVERYTHING ABOUT THE CRUCIFIXION ,ETC. Such things became a common sight of which down at Faith Assembly and many other congregations we did not have such problems, standing there in the vestibule of the Tabernacle teaching their own personal little doctrines to a dozen men or whoever they might corner, filling their heads with all kinds of ideas before the service. Imagine when a people had come from all over the U.S. and many parts of the world to hear an end-time prophet proclaim a great revelation as his message was restoring us back to Bible truth when he would have to follow such characters who had overstepped their liberty to promote their own ideas before the prophet came to speak! Or sitting in the church itself, talking and yakking to perhaps 6-12 others concerning their own revelation, God forbid that a prophet of this caliber would have to take a bunch of minds like that and try to get them straightened out in about 1 hour and 45 minutes, seeing all this other garbage had been dumped into their ears! I ask you, what would you do? Really, what I feel should have been done, however I can only speak for Faith Assembly Church, the deacons should have shown these characters the front door and said GET OUT OF HERE AS YOUR INTENTIONS ARE NOT WALK IN THE TUE REVELATIONS OF CHRIST, and still leave the church door open as these are the exact instructions the deacons of Faith Assembly Church have from me personally considering any such characters who invade our assembly. And as the little song goes, when the people get to acting up in the pew what should you do – THROW THEM OUT, but leave the church door open and let the church roll on!


Another problem arising in those days was people had come along who portrayed themselves to be so spiritual and in line with this truth, yet wouldn’t live right, refusing to pay their just and honest debts. In other words, dead-beats for the most part! However, they enjoyed standing in the open congregation of fellowship and operating spiritual gifts. See when you have such a collection of things which converge on the church and these conditions seemingly get no better only prevail worse and worse, what would you do? You are forced to act and the fact you act or what you do becomes a deed. You are forced to act because of prevailing conditions. And I say, with all due respect to this great man of God which God so greatly used in this hour who knew, because of these many arising circumstances which was greatly affecting the spirituality of this lighthouse in which God chose to light his candle to the gentiles to spread the full revelation of truth to the 7th and final church age restoring a Bride people back to the unadulterated Word of God, and probably not aware of the fact in a few years after making this church order he would be off the scene, leaving the order to run in every direction or to about anyone’s interpretation as to what is was all about, something had to be done to correct these who had overstepped their rights as a believer. And because of his own personal makeup, a kind, loving, easygoing man who didn’t enjoy hurting anyone (instead of making an example out of this individuals) he made a church order which affected not only those guilty of trespasses, but also affected the innocent as well! For the order covered everything from the back seat to the Bible stand.


RESULTS OF INDIVIDUALS PUSHING CHURCH ORDER


Let me go on record as saying, as unwise characters began to push this church order out of its original bonds where it was supposed to be kept, like what happened at Pergamos etc., now after nine long years of this in other churches, placing it where it had no business has completely killed off the nine gifts of the Spirit which are supposed to be in the church of which this message was supposed to call out a people to be ready to go with the Lord who would have those nine gifts of the Spirit in operation within their local assemblies. After nine long years of misguided individuals taking this one order of correction, given to and for the BRANHAM TABERNACLE ONLY, having used it in such a pathetic way, it has spread enough fear, doubt, unrest, distrust and created enough spiritual disease that the nine gifts and nine fruits of spirit lay dormant and yet everyone is crying HOW WILL IT ALL END, and some are even going so far to teach and believe it is going to take a PERSONAL RESURRECTION of Bro. Branham to return and straighten out this mess in order for it to be ever ready to go in the rapture.


PAUL NOT RAISED TO CORRECT FIRST AGE


All I have to say is this, according to the scripture God didn’t resurrect Paul to come back from the grave to straighten out that first age after it had followed Ephesus’ exampleship and made a doctrine out of the thing crippling the influence of the spirit of God to move through his church, destroying the authority of the fivefold ministry and brining in a priesthood which carried it into the Dark Ages. NO, GOD DID NOT RESURRECT PAUL AFTER HIS DEATH, but He did speak through John on the Isle of Patmos saying to Ephesus, You left your first love and have there those who hold deeds of the Nicolaitanes of which I hate. Therefore I command you to repent, else I take away your candlestick. Oh, I realize after nine years when I make a statement like this people who have no scriptural grounds to hold to and have no intentions of returning to the scriptural truth in which this prophet’s life was dedicated to restore us unto before Christ would come for a Bride whereby at the wedding supper we would be a people all believing the same thing, these people will say oh, YOU ARE SPEAKING AGAINST THE PROPHET! You see, that is what they always say, because they do not have anything scriptural to support them, therefore, they hide behind this favorite statement.


I WANT TO SAY AGAIN JUST FOR THE BENEFIT OF THESE INDIVIDUALS, I AM NOT SPEAKING AGAINST WHAT THE PROPHET DID IN HIS OWN CHURCH, AND FURTHERMORE, WHEN I VISIT THAT ASSEMBLY I AM COURTEOUS TO OBSERVE EVERY RULE MADE BY THAT GREAT MAN OF GOD CONCERNING THIS ORDER OF CORRECTION MADE FOR HIS LOCAL ASSEMBLY. But brother, God forbid the man who says simply because the prophet did a certain thing in a certain way as he saw fit to spank his unruly child, that I must in turn spank my child the same when my child may not have done this, THAT DOESN’T MAKE SENSE! God is not looking for copycats of this nature, He is looking for people who will copy after the one and only – THE LORD JESUS CHRIST! Question: If you had 7 children and only one overstepped his privilege, would you punish all 7 or only the one who overstepped his privilege?


Therefore, when this certain CHURCH ORDER went into effect at the Branham Tabernacle, true it stopped those characters from sitting long hours in advance of the service teaching their own private doctrines to a dozen people or standing in the vestibule expressing their own views and distributing their tracts, however, it didn’t stop them from moving out into the parking lot, because the order only covered the inside of the building. At least they couldn’t do it within the meeting house anymore! It stopped the false prophesying from the congregation, but don’t forget IT ALSO STOPPED THE TRUE PROPHECY which had also been coming from out of the congregation. You see, the true also suffered! And now that CHURCH ORDER has been in affect for some nine years, all over this country, an order intended for only one place, simply because of unscriptural dealings by certain individuals, it now not only affects one place as it was originally intended, it seriously affects multitudes of other places! After nine years the hearts of many people know something is wrong and perhaps even see their gross error, only are too proud to admit it. That’s a gentile for you. In general he is too proud to admit he was ever wrong. I want to say, had they left the order alone where it was originally intended to be, the message itself could have moved on in the Spirit of the Lord! When the prophet himself said after making this disciplinary order to affect his local church, WE WILL LEAVE IT IN FOR A WHILE THEN WE WILL SEE WHAT THE LORD WILL HAVE US TO DO ABOUT IT! It was definitely his intention after it had served its purpose at this one location to have been lifted, however, before the prophet could do this he was taken from the scene and this order, as it was picked up by others who didn’t care if a gift ever operated, who didn’t care whether God’s blessings ever flowed through the congregation, their orders became, get rid of your tambourines, get rid of your guitars and your special singings. In reality they were saying get rid of everything God could use to bless a soul with an then they would use the church order, as a whipping post, to get their carnal ideas across! Until today it has reached the place preaching church order, to these characters of which they can find no scriptural grounds for doing, has become more important than seeing a soul walk in the true revelation or be baptized in the same Jesus Christ! It seems the subject of CHURCH ORDER was the first thing a preacher wanted to get in the pulpit with and begin to hammer and beat everyone else in the face with, using such unscriptural phrase to frighten people as, God will severely judge you if you don’t or your are not in the message thus you couldn’t be in the Bride! Throw out those tambourines, guitars and special music!


BLINDED INDIVIDUALS DRIVE OUT SPIRIT


Therefore, these individuals drove out what little Spirit had remained in these assemblies robbing them of their personal joy and oral expression of liberty and most of all destroyed the gifts of the Spirit from operating in the church. Now you sing two songs, have a short prayer, read out of the books and simply say something about the prophet, dismiss the service and go home feeling – BOY, WE SURE ARE IN THE MESSAGE AND READY FOR THE RAPTURE, when beloved, they who walk in that kind of attitude and atmosphere are as the old saying, “DEAD AS A DOOR NAIL”! Why, the Baptist have more Spirit than that! No, I am not making fun, but I realize after nine years what this has done to the churches and what the church has come to. These poor people haven’t manifested a gift of God since that day! Naturally, after nine years why should they believe in them. After nine years of all this they have no more spirit or know anything more about God. No, it is sad to say they don’t even know as much as they did nine years before about God and won’t ever know. WHY? Because they invited this into their hearts and shut the door on the leadership and manifestation of the Spirit of God!


OVERCOMERS IN EACH AGE


Christ continually says to the churches, he that hath an ear let him hear what the Spirit saith to the churches. To him that overcometh (overcometh what?). This condition within the church and to the age. I say, as it was in that hour of the Ephesus Age, it is up to the individual to overcome those things which hinder them as well as the worldly conditions of the hour. It is up to the individual to recognize his own liberty in the Word of God as God through His sovereign grace gives him the liberty to be in and participate as a yielded vessel in the plan of God. Yes, it is up to the individual to overcome those spiritual conditions, rise up and shake himself and walk in the love of God, allowing the joy of salvation to live within his heart. The condition itself will go on, not getting any better yet, God says to the individual, to him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life which is in the midst of the Paradise of God. Oh, how thankful I am there is a great promise of what we may have access to in the other life if we overcome!


MANY IGNORANT OF REASON FOR CHURCH ORDER


I have met people across the country who had no idea why CHURCH ORDER was ever brought into effect in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Many people have their idea that the prophet needed all the time himself and that is what caused it to be made. Well, if that be true then what about the great percentage of time he wasn’t there? He certainly didn’t need the time then and what about since he has been gone these seven years, he certainly hasn’t needed the time. No beloved, that is not why CHURCH ORDER was made! I remember so well when I first began going to the Tabernacle when it had an open fellowship, it was this very thing that made me feel so at home. No sooner had we set down then someone shook our hand and said we are glad to see you, where are you from etc., and after the service invited us to return. Although when I heard that man speak for the first time in my heart I knew I was going to return. After preaching he would come down and stand in the aisle where we would all talk until late hours before going home and we felt like we had been to church!


SATAN MUDDIES WATER IN OPEN FELLOWSHIP


However, it wasn’t long before you could sense there were these certain individual people who didn’t want the Holy Ghost to move, some of them who were out of certain denominational churches who sat in high places, who wouldn’t give their tithe there but instead send it back to a denominational church. Beloved, I have never done a dirty trick like that! I believe in paying my grocery bill where I buy my groceries! And in those days the congregation was always left open for the Holy Spirit to have option in whatever it saw fit to do. And so, often the Spirit would move and bless the people. There was always someone who wanted to make a fuss about it. Nevertheless, God would move back the opposition as He moved in with enough momentum for a short period of time it would seem like the Holy Spirit was going to have complete authority and the right to work and do as it pleased Him in the congregation. You can rest assured when the devil knows that, he will have to put another shot in the arm. Then it wasn’t long until people would take advantage of testimony time talking about things which should be thrown in the trash can and every time it seemed the Holy Spirit would give the opportunity and liberty to testify of God’s goodness, these same individuals always wanted to hassle and wrangle about foolish things, which isn’t testimony but complaining! And coming to prayer requests, some people don’t seem to know the difference between prayer requests and how sick someone’s dog is. I am not complaining, I am presenting you a picture of when people have liberty in the congregation how the devil doesn’t like it and does everything possible to muddy the water!


ORDER MADE AFFECTING ALL RATHER THAN HUMILIATE GUILTY

What does he do, he shoots just enough human nature and ideas into it to aggravate the situation and create a condition. Rather than humiliate anyone or make anyone a victim of circumstance, let us just make an order. This will be done and that will be done and when we have done this for a while we will see what the Lord will have us to do. No sooner was this said and done sure, it stopped the testifying, the prayer requests and those long-winded preachers who couldn’t say anything, but the word of the prophet, when the congregation already knew the word of the prophet – beloved, let me say, if the name of Jesus Christ cannot become the central theme of your message and your preaching and still be thankful in your hearts to God He was kind enough to send a prophet to straighten out our thinking and put us back in the truth of the Bible, then there is something carnally wrong in our minds. Because I want you to know all prophets prior to Christ’s coming, as well as these since His coming, God has willed that everyone who preaches anything in respect to this gospel preaches it centered around and about the Lord Jesus Christ. Christ said if I be lifted up I will draw all men unto me, nevertheless, I once heard an individual make the remark about this scripture, which pertained only to Christ hanging on the cross, saying, He was going to lift up William Branham. Beloved, may I say this, if you don’t lift up Jesus Chris who died on the cross, I have my doubts that very much of the atonement which flowed from the cross of Calvary will ever be your portion! Everyone knows when Bro. William Branham preached he magnified and lifted up that Christ who hung on the cross and never once was it ever his intentions to be lifted up himself. The virtue of Calvary didn’t come from this man, however, by the spirit of this man he pointed you through the revelation to that Christ.


Yes, as I said, this church order stopped those long-winded preacher in the pulpit who couldn’t say anything but, the word of the prophet, although once the prophet himself had delivered a lengthy message those individuals couldn’t wait until they had dashed to the outside world and because they had no leadership of the Holy Spirit to guide them to know what God was doing, their feelings like Pergamos was WHATEVER IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR THE TABERNACLE IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR HERE! Beloved, through their diabolical leadings they have placed the church in the state it is as they have killed out the Spirit and His nine gifts and diseased the nine fruits of the Spirit, as they took their whip (this order) and did worse to the grace of God than the Catholic Church ever did!


Church order placed in other churches did not kill the Spirit in every assembly because some were ALREADY DEAD!


MANY WEIRD IDEAS SINCE CHURCH ORDER


Briefly I want to show you I am not ignorant of what I am speaking, of how the spirit which has led these people has now led them into revelations straight out of the pit. I say the man I heard called William Branham the prophet, what he taught me placed me BACK IN THE BIBLE, and if you haven’t been placed BACK IN THE BIBLE you are still wandering and drifting today! To any of our new readers who might not understand what I am teaching and you think this is simply awful, you should have set in some of those early apostolic churches before 96 A.D. when the elders at Ephesus had clamped down on the Spirit of God and heard some of those ridiculous revelations which floated through the congregation!


Recently I received a call from a very disturbed person who had been in this message two years. Somehow they had received one of our Contenders with the message REVEALED SCRIPTURES PRODUCE CONSISTENCY. The individual informed me how because of a deep hunger for God they had been led from a certain denominational church and had been given some literature concerning what Bro. Branham had taught. Later they began to attend this certain church whereupon as the months passed by instead of being helped they realized they were becoming more confused. The person said, I was aware God has sent a prophet and what he had taught was supposed to put me back in the Apostolic faith, however, the more I listened in this certain place I wasn’t hearing at all what I had been reading. I was only hearing certain parts. It soon reached a place I was very disturbed. Each time they got in the pulpit it seemed every other word, said this individual, was THE PROPHET, THE PROPHET, until they began to wonder WHERE WAS THE LORD JESUS CHRIST IN ALL THIS. If I dared open my mouth, continued this person, people would try to hush me up with this phrase, NOW DON’T YOU BLASPHEME! I heard this until I thought my life was dominated by fear. Now, the caller said they have taken the extreme in this church to teach that people should remain unmarried. Remember, I said, Paul wrote to Timothy saying in the latter days some (thank God not all) would depart from the faith teaching that very doctrine. I know where that idea came from, it came from certain individuals’ personal interpretation of what their twisted minds understood Bro. Branham to mean when he preached on MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE. No, they didn’t get that idea from the Bible. And I said to this person, those poor people who didn’t take on that kind of spirit, got influenced by another which is just as rotten, referring to one’s mate that if you feel God did not give you the right one, ditch her and get another, or else just keep her and get a second one. Beloved, it is time we returned to this Bible! I am only saying these things to show you when the people wandered off the trail once they accepted a church order because it did not pertain to their assembly as it was used strictly for disciplinary action.


To show you how far this thing had drifted, many who took that route (of church order) since now driving the Holy Spirit from their churches, no teach no one has the Holy Ghost, and I personally doubt that anyone who remains very long in that atmosphere does have the Holy Ghost. A friend of mine, doing missionary work in Trinidad has made three visits, said each time he visited the island things were drifting further and further into the state of apostasy. Men from our local area, who are supposed to be a part of this message, had been on the island teaching in churches that no one was born again until they came into this message. That, by the way, is what they were teaching last spring. However, on his recent journey he discovered the northern part of the island where churches had been established in this message, all of them had been caught up in this teaching as he was given no opportunity to speak in any of them. One pastor whom he questioned was bold enough, who had this diabolical spirit upon him so strongly that not only did he explain it to the missionary, he wrote it down, dated and signed it and we have a copy. It goes like this; THERE HAS BEEN NO ONE BORN AGAIN APART OR OUTSIDE OF WILLIAM MARRION BRANHAM SINCE THE DAYS OF THE NICEA COUNCIL UNTIL THE DAY THE SEVEN SEALS WERE REVEALED BY WILLIAM BRANHAM, GOD’S PROPHET IN 1963. There has been no one between these two periods of time born again outside the prophet.


Now do you see why some misguided souls go through the land teaching no one has received the baptism of the Holy Ghost because they certainly do not have it themselves.! If they did, they would not teach such rotten stuff from the pit and think THEY GOT IT EVERY BIT OFF A MESSAGE ENTITLED, “THAT STATUE OF A PERFECT MAN.” When Bro. Branham taught that message he never intended for anyone to develop such a carnal opinion as that. He preached that message to get you back in the Bible as he preached all his messages; to make a real Christian out of you wherein Christ might dwell in your life, and certainly he was not responsible for such a weird teaching as that! Such characters as these running over the country are ruining God’s people! Instead of helping them go forward, they are responsible for them going backward, and what they can’t make go backward they cause them to go sideways. And they say to me, Bro. Jackson, you know we have to have love! Beloved, I say these sheep killing dogs, or dumb dogs as Isaiah called them, wouldn’t know the love of God if they saw a boxcar load of it! The only thing they love is for you to get deceived like they are, get in the same ship with them and sail out in no-man’s land far, far away from the truth! REMEMBER, BIRDS OF A FEATHER FLOCK TOGETHER!

It Happened At Jericho

TEXT: JOSHUA 2:1-24


A STORY OF TWO GENERATIONS AND WHAT EACH REAPED BECAUSE OF THEIR ATTITUDE TOWARD GOD. ONE A PATHETIC GENERATION OF UN-BELIEVERS WHO, AFTER WITNESSING THE MIRACULOUS POWER OF GOD, FAILED THROUGH FEAR AND UNBELIEF, THUS BEING OVERTHROWN IN THE WILDERNESS ONLY TO HAVE BECOME AN EXAMPLE UNTO ALL WHO WALK CONTRARY TO THE LEADERSHIP OF THE HOLY SPIRIT (II Cor. 10:6-11, Hebrews 3:7-19). THE YOUNGER GENERATION, SEEING THE MISTAKE OF THE FIRST, PROSPERS GREATLY AND DOES THE IMPOSSIBLE. HOW DOES THE NATURAL CONQUERING OF JERICHO ON THE 7TH DAY APPLY SPIRITUALLY TO THE HOUR IN WHICH WE LIVE? WHAT DOES THE LONG BLAST OF THE RAMS HORN ON THAT 7TH DAY IMPLY?


Turn with me into Joshua 2, where today we are discussing the subject, “IT HAPPENED AT JERICHO”. Although this beautiful story is of a historical occurrence, I feel we should study and observe the pattern of it because just as certain things happened at Jericho, I feel we can expect certain things to happen in a similar manner for us. Even though these are natural occurrences which happened here at Jericho, still I believe our conditions and circumstances in later days will bring about God’s purpose, therefore, all of this study should be looked upon strictly from a spiritual significance.


For a basis of thought you should read Joshua 2:1-24. (1) And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men to spy secretly saying, Go view the land, even Jericho. And they went and came unto a harlots house, named Rahab and lodged there.” Since the fall of Jericho does not take place until chapter 6, it would be well worth the readers time to read those first six chapters.


Contents

CHARACTER STUDY – JOSHUA AND RAHAB


First off, let us take a quick run down on several characters found in verse 1, namely Joshua and RAHAB, who after this setting is also found mentioned in a number of places throughout the scriptures. Joshua was from the tribe of Ephraim, (Numbers 13:8). The Grecian form of his name was Jesus. (Acts 7:45) In that he led his people into the promised land he may have well been a prototype of his great successor the Lord Jesus who in turn will lead His own sheep into the promised land of glory.


Throughout the 40 years of wilderness wanderings Joshua had been a personal attendant to Moses having first been seen with Moses in the Mount, (Exodus 24:13). Also he was one of the twelve spies sent to spy out the land of Canaan, (Numbers 13:8-16). According to Josephus, the Jewish historian, Joshua was 85 when he succeeded Moses and died at the age of 110.


Israel, now with only a fragment of what one day will be the complete word of God, namely the first five books of Moses’ writings, had enough of an understanding as to what God wanted and expected out of them, however through unbelief the first generation after the giving of the Law at Mt. Sinai was unable to fulfill their obligations to Jehovah and all were destroyed in the desert this side of the promised land. Only two out of the first generation made it to the promised land for which they had been delivered to enjoy, not even that great servant Moses who longed for the sight of this promised land as it had been he who was ordained to lead between two and three million Israelites from slavery and servitude out of Egyptian bondage.


MOSES, GOD’S SERVANT REPRESENTS OLDER GENERATION


At the age of 120, his eyes not dimmed or his natural force abated, Moses, the aged servant of God, though never allowed to enter into his dream, the promised land, was kindly permitted by the Almighty to climb along to the height of Mt. Pisgah (today called Mt. Nebo), some 8 miles from the boundary line of the promised land (the Jordan River), to view that promised land upon which he would never be allowed to set foot (Numbers 20:11-12). From the top of Mt. Pisgah on a clear day one can see as far to the north as the snow capped peak of Mt. Hermon where Jesus was transfigured and where, strange enough, in a vision he (Moses) appeared with Elijah talking with Jesus, (Matthew 17:3). Somewhere on those lofty peaks of Mt. Pisgah, 8 miles east of the mouth of the Jordan River, Moses’ earthly journey ended. Moses could no doubt see the hills of Judaea and Galilee as well as Mt. Carmel where Elijah, some 500 years later would call fire down from heaven. It was here God lifted his soul into even a better land and buried his body. Of his sepulcher no man knows; undoubtedly he was removed from the reach of idolatry by Israel. (Deuteronomy 34:1-12)


APPROACHING JORDAN FOR CROSSING


The Jordan, being the boundary line for the promised land, is now ready to be crossed by Joshua and the new generation. In our story of Joshua 2, we note Joshua with his army of Israelites are now encamped just this side of the Jordan waiting word from his two spies who were already in the land gathering certain information for him, namely, WHAT IS THE REACTION OF THE PEOPLE OF JERICHO AND THROUGHOUT THE LAND OF CANAAN CONCERNING THIS NATION OF ISRAEL WHO ARE NOW READY TO MOVE INTO THE LAND TO TAKE THEIR FATHER ABRAHAM’S INHERITANCE! (Deuteronomy 34:1-5) Notice carefully verses 9-11 declared how the people of Jericho felt in their hearts about what happened at the Red Sea 40 years prior, as well as what happened to various kings along the route of Israel’s desert journey. Furthermore, RAHAB brings them up to the present hour informing these two spies who have entered her home how she is aware the Lord has given Israel the land and how the terror of Israel has fallen upon all the inhabitants of the land of Canaan and furthermore their hearts are faint because of what God has done for Israel. And last of all she asks for protection for herself and her family when Israel did conquer Jericho. (Joshua 2:12-21)


WOMAN OF FAITH


Briefly, let us take a quick look at this woman, RAHAB, who provided shelter to the two spies of Joshua. Informed by some outside source, RAHAB, along with all the people of the land are by no means ignorant of the miracles wrought by Almighty God in behalf of Israel within the past 40 years. Somehow through this she had become convinced Israel’s God was the true God – not Baal and Estar, the Babylonian gods of that period.


CANAANITE PRIESTESS PUBLIC PROSTITUTE


And upon meeting these spies she decided to risk her life by casting her lot with the people of Israel and their God. Although the scripture calls her a harlot, she may not have been altogether as bad as the word harlot today would imply. Recall she lived among a people whose morals were extremely low. Priestess’ of the Canaanite religion were always public prostitutes, therefore no doubt, her profession was considered by her own people among whom she lived as honorable and not such a disgraceful thing as the word would imply among us today. Three other places mention RAHAB in the scripture. According to Matthew 1:5, RAHAB married an Israelite named Salmon; I Chronicles 2:51, Caleb (one of the original 12 spies) had a son named Salmon – it is possible this is the same Salmon whom RAHAB married. If that be true, she married into a leading family of Israel and that could account for how she came to be within the ancestral line of Boaz, David and Christ! Furthermore, it is learned from Hebrews 11:31, that RAHAB is listed among the heros of faith of the old covenant. God certainly honored this Canaanite harlot’s choice in siding with Israel before the city fell. Perhaps her salvation was a reward for the kindness shown toward the spies which Joshua had sent into Jericho to get an account of the feeling of the people within the land before his invasion. It had been within RAHAB’s power to turn the two spies over to the king’s soldiers when word leaked out and reached the king’s ears that RAHAB was entertaining two strangers. Instead, she hid the spies pretending they had left her establishment, sending the king’s soldiers away on a false trail.


PART 1 – TWO SPIES GATHERING INFORMATION


Therefore, from the scriptures do we learn somewhat of our present setting. It is in the spring of the year and the river Jordan is by no means shallow as we shall later learn, because it is not the time of the year for the Jordan to be shallow, instead it is well out of its banks during the month of Abib, Israel’s first religious month of the year. And it is this time of year during the pass-over season God has chosen to take the people across the Jordan into the land of Canaan where no more than six miles away stands their first target, this fortified city of Jericho. From the walls of Jericho the river Jordan is in plain view where along its banks now encamps a nation of people who just recently buried all their dead of the older generation, except for Caleb and Joshua, and now await word from the two spies who are inside Jericho gathering certain information.


MEMORIES OF YOUNGER GENERATION AND HOW IT BENEFITTED THEM

Perhaps no generation ever carried the memories as does this entire new generation of Israelites who now, under the leadership of Joshua, is ready to cross the Jordan into the land of Canaan. A few days ago God Commissioned Israel, through Joshua, to prepare for the crossing saying, Now that my servant Moses is dead it is time to prepare the pass over the Jordan River. This they will do as soon as the report is brought back by the spies now gathering secret information in Jericho.


Why had Joshua only chosen to send two spies into the land when 40 years prior Moses had sent 12 to spy out the land, Joshua and Caleb being two of those spies? And had it not been for the good report Caleb and Joshua brought back out of the land they too would be as dead as the rest who all died in unbelief (an unpardonable sin). Yes, it is only because of this good report Joshua stands alive to direst Israel.


UNBELIEF OF PEOPLE AT KADESH-BARNEA


Turning back the pages of time 40 years we see Moses, along with perhaps 2½ or 3 million people camped at Kadesh-Barnea: Moses, having received the Law at Sinai planned to go directly from Sinai to Canaan, therefore, he journeyed straight to Kadesh, 150 miles north of Sinai, 50 miles south of Beersheba, the southern gateway into Canaan, intending to enter the land at once. However, his 12 spies, one from each tribe, returned from their scouting party with such a discouraging and frightening report, the people of Israel balked and refused to go any further and would have stoned Moses had it not been for the miraculous intervention of God. There they were within sight of the promised land and had reached a most crucial point of their journey and turned back! Caleb and Joshua, being the only spies out of the 12 who even encouraged the people to go forward, assuring the people God was with them regardless if the Israelite people did look like grasshoppers compared to the giants they saw and what if their cities were well fortified, that would be nothing compared to the power of God! Nevertheless, the people turned a deaf ear to their report, instead listening intently to the 10 spies who instructed the nation they would never be able to take the land! These two men were the only two out of approximately 600,000 men over 20 years old who were permitted to enter the land 40 years later while the others died in unbelief. Throughout the New Testament we are constantly reminded of the failures of this first generation, who died in unbelief. For instance, read John 6:27-49, Christ’s words were, your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness and are dead (eternally)!! (Hebrews 3:7-12)


TRIBES SELECT REPRESENTATIVE


At Kadesh-Barnea the men were selected to spy out the land of Canaan. Each tribe had been allowed to choose one man to represent them. This was so each tribe would have a voice in the matter and none would feel neglected. However, as we shall learn this was a grave mistake to give all the people a voice. Moses, no doubt, did not want any of the tribes to feel left out saying he was showing favoritism, however, 10 tribes definitely made a poor selection to represent them. Their choice of selection caused the first generation after the giving of the Law to die in unbelief and resulted in a 40 year wandering in the wilderness until the death of the first generation. The journey from Egypt to the promised land would not have required over 90 days at the most, however, because of Israel’s listening to the report of the spies and their refusal to enter into the land, it resulted in a wondering period of 40 years waiting until the present generation died off and a new generation would become old enough to take their place and go into the promised land, under a new leadership.


JOSHUA’S CHOICE OF ONLY TWO SPIES


It had been upon the evidence of what happened at Kadesh-Barnea 40 years ago that prompted Joshua to send only two spies into the land and not 12, when the hour arose that he was faced with the same ultimatum as Moses. This time each tribe was not given a voice in the matter, and since only the report of two spies had been inspiring and pleasing to God 40 years ago, only two spies are now chosen to cross the Jordan and enter Jericho to gather information for Israel.


Looking back through 40 years from our present setting gives us a better understanding as to why this new generation is now camped on this side of the Jordan River in sight of Jericho ready to enter the promised land given to Abraham their father by Almighty God in Genesis 12. Jericho is certainly not ignorant of the presence of these millions camped at Jordan. They know all about what happened at the Red Sea along with their wilderness journeying for 40 years, and because of what they know it has produced great fear in Jericho and throughout the land of Canaan concerning these people who had the Red Sea to open before their path; who has since then never gone into any town to buy either food or raiment and how had never known what it was to plant a garden or dig a well. HOW IS IT POSSIBLE TO FEED AND CLOTHE A NATION OF POSSIBLE 2 OR 3 MILLION PEOPLE? These and other reports are the things which terrify the idolatrous Baal worshipers of Jericho and various cities throughout Canaan.


NEW GENERATION REPRESENTS FULL BELIEF AND TRUST IN GOD


None, however, can be less ignorant of what all has happened these 40 years, although many were small children at the time, than is this new generation of Israelites now ready to cross Jordan into Canaan. Standing in Israel’s ranks under Joshua’s leadership are men and women who, not like their parents, full of unbelief, are now ready to take the land their parents could have easily taken 40 years ago. Men, who 40 years prior were young tots; women who now hold their own babies and are now ready to cross the Jordan River, were held by their mothers or led by the guiding hand of their parents as they crossed the Red Sea! These children now all grown into adulthood can still recall those fearful nights in Egyptian bondage when they did not know whether their parents would ever return home alive at night. Yes, within the minds of this new generation standing ready for the crossing, is that full unbroken story which relates a continual picture from the horrors of Egypt through the Red Sea and 40 long years of desert wandering because of disobedience. No, there is not a single thread missing in understanding, in responsibilities and decisions from the hour they left Egypt until their present hour, 40 years later. Many standing in those ranks now ready to cross the Jordan under a new leadership can well remember the terrible tragedy Egypt suffered at the Red Sea, the following day after Israel left Egypt under God’s leadership heading straight for the promised land which as of this time, 40 years later because of unbelief they still have not entered. They can easily recall how God did not choose to lead them by the way of the usual camel caravan route from Egypt to Canaan, instead God chose to lead them in a route which seemed utterly impossible, revealing to them it will be only God himself who can take them through and not their own initiative and might. Therefore, from this I can say it will not be what you and I think (about the scriptures) or what we feel we know nor will it be our power or ability which will get us through either, it will be nothing short of the grace of God! Nevertheless, within the grace of God there always comes that responsibility or obligation upon our part to be sure we remain in His will while we are attempting to walk with and obey God. Forty years ago, that older generation, which is now all dead because of unbelief, was then the parents and carried many of these who are now standing at the Jordan River in their arms as small children. They well remember that hour approaching the Red Sea when suddenly they looked back only to see that terrifying Egyptian Army in hot pursuit (somewhere around 1300 B.C.). Egypt at that time was the only nation known who could breed such swift horses as used to pull their chariots. They were known to be the swiftest horses in the world and here that Egyptian Army was dashing across the desert in hot pursuit with the finest of these military horses of the day. With Egypt they had been a standard of military pride and might and here stood, as the world would look upon it, a handful of helpless, bedraggled people. And what could they do against such military might and power? Israel having been in bondage so long had no weapons of defense – she was totally dependent upon the grace, mercy and power of Almighty God to preserve and sustain her from whatever situation that lay in her pathway. There they stood at the banks of the Red Sea! How foolish it must have looked for a man to lead between 2-3 million people in such a route as this. Moses moved his people out of Egypt by night, silently and swiftly in so much not even a dog barked nor a cry was made after the midnight hour when the death angel passed through Egypt striking all the first born, even Pharaoh himself suffered loss; through utter despair he had ordered the people out. Moses takes them from Goshen along with all their flocks and herds which numbered into the thousands. The route Moses chose to move this mass migration out of Egypt was toward the Sea of Reeds also called the Red Sea at a northern marshy place, south of the bitter lakes which are a geographical extension to the sea and today is the site of the Suez Canal. The land there was marshy and the waterway somewhat shallow, however not as shallow as one unbeliever of whom I heard trying to explain away the miracle of the Red Sea said Moses crossed at a spot where the water was only a few feet deep. Isn’t that amazing, that is even a far greater miracle seeing the entire Egyptian Army was drowned in such a small amount of water! Every kind of excuse has been offered to explain away the miraculous, well-timed wind God created that night to part the waters. Some Russian scientists recently explained that a meteorite coming into earth’s orbit did not burn itself out thus crashing into the Red Sea and causing this gigantic opening, splitting the waters which allowed the people to cross. Wouldn’t it be more simple just to believe the Bible and accept what the scripture says – God caused a strong wind to part the waters! Israel, with not one boat and with nothing materialistic with which to build a boat, stood at the sea – God had certainly not chosen to lead these people in a way natural or convenient. May I say, neither has God chosen to lead us in a way that looks natural or pleasing as far as man’s way is of looking at the thing. So often God chooses a way which appears completely foolish for a man to walk, yet He will allow him to make a decision by following Him through some truth which appears completely foolish or unnecessary to believe or accept. Nevertheless, here stood a people at the Red sea, mighty in number which had been beaten mistreated and poor. Yet in one sense they were not poor because the scripture declares only a few days prior to their leaving Egypt God had caused this same bedraggled people to find favor with many of the Egyptians and from the scriptural term they “borrowed” from the Egyptians.


ISRAELITES “BORROW” FROM EGYPTIANS


However, since they were never going to return I am more of the opinion their “borrowing” from the Egyptians was more or less in this sense – God had caused a certain class of Egyptians to show kindness toward the Israelites, especially after all the plagues etc., had fallen upon Egypt, they no doubt knew the Israelites were involved with them which caused the Egyptian people to want to do something good for them. Moreover, when the Israelites asked to “borrow”, I believe God had given Israel such favor with the people, it was more or less like, here is my savings, take it. Furthermore, we know from scripture it was a mixed multitude which left Egypt, meaning certain Egyptians left to follow Israel to the new land. When Israel left Egypt that night she took with her a great amount of Egyptian wealth. Therefore, I say why did they simply “borrow” something, knowing they would never return?


VICTORY AND DISASTER AT RED SEA


Standing at the banks of the Red Sea all that night we realize Israel was waiting for something to happen. Their fear was the army would take them back into captivity. However, they were waiting somehow to cross over when suddenly as daylight began to appear here came that mighty, powerful Egyptian Army. As Israel saw the dust from the advancing military chariots crossing the desert, they began to cry out and complain against Moses why he had done this to them! Naturally complaining against Moses they were complaining against God who was maneuvering the entire thing. This caused Moses after hearing the complaining Israelites, to lift his eyes to God and begin to cry out. God in turn told him to instruct the people to stand still and they would see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord. What happened? First, God placed as a separation between the Israelites and Egyptian Army a pillar of cloud and fire whereby the Egyptians might not advance upon the camp of the Israelites. As night came the scripture says a strong east wind began to blow and when light came the next day God had parted the waters of the Red Sea. Never in the history of the world had such a phenomena happened! Stepping down into the sea on dry ground to walk across to the other side was all of Israel, her domestic animals etc., while on both sides of them stood a quivering wall of water! By the time the Hebrews reached this place for crossing, Pharaoh, whose heart God had once again hardened, changed his mind and decided he didn’t want to loose all these Israelite slaves, thus he sent his army out to bring them back. However, according to the scripture, the army never quite overtook them. As Pharaoh’s men attempted to pursue the Israelites across the Red Sea, the wind ceased and the water surged back like a flash flood. In the swirling waters of the sea the Egyptians and their horses were submerged and drowned.


MEMORIES OF WHAT CAUSES OLDER GENERATION

TO MISS GOD SPURS YOUNGER GENERATION


Now forty years later a new generation of Israelites are camped at the Jordan waiting instructions from their new leader, Joshua, to cross into the promised land. Many of these were mere children that unforgettable day when an entire nation stepped down into the bottom of the Red Sea and walked across on dry ground! What an impression that must have left upon their little minds as they watched that gigantic opening within the sea. Such an indelible impression was stamped upon their minds they would carry it to their graves. The psalmist described it as “the sea saw it and fled before them” (Psalms 114:3). Yes, many of these standing by the Jordan, 40 years ago well remember seeing dead Egyptians floating to the surface of the Red Sea; many no doubt recall hearing their parents murmuring and complaining against Moses as to why had he brought them out to the sea, saying it would have been better had he left them in Egypt to die. grumblingThey remembered the complaining and grumbling of their parents; they remembered the unbelief which caused them to miss the promised land; they remembered seeing thousands dying as they were being bitten by serpents and Moses erecting a brass serpent upon a pole instructing the people to look upon it and be healed. In their minds there wasn’t a single thread missing of that story of 40 years ago which caused their parents to die in unbelief, never entering the land. Being children 20 years and under had caused them not to be responsible for the attitude and decision of the adults which were made in their journeyings. Therefore, all these experiences caused this new generation to be a far wiser generation in their trusting God because of what they had seen and heard, and moreover they definitely intended to prosper from the mistakes of the older generation. This event which happened at the Red Sea, I am sure, went down in history as the greatest defeat Egypt ever suffered although perhaps never recorded in Egyptian history because they certainly would not want to face the shame of such a defeat.


INFORMERS AT JERICHO


According to Joshua 2:10, who do you suppose informed all the people of Canaan, especially Jericho, about the disaster at the Red Sea and how God worked in behalf of the Israelites? Certainly not the Egyptians who were ashamed of such a defeat, and not the Israelites who were never permitted to cross over because of unbelief: therefore, it must have been the camel caravans traveling from place to place in those days who carried those stories of such an unforgettable and frightening nature. I imagine all through the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness just waiting for the first generation to die off, Israel encountered many such caravans coming across those very same desert sands and no doubt the Red Sea had washed up many an object only to be buried in the sands, later to be discovered as signs of what happened at the Red Sea. No doubt over the years it had become quite a tourist attraction for many of the caravans to filter through the sands and dig up items revealing the great defeat in that hour. Man is much the same today, he still has that curiosity to investigate such things. Those boys and girls who then were under 20 years of age could never forget how those waters looked as they came crashing down on those frightened, screaming, terrified horsemen and horses which reared backward while chariots overturned and spilled their occupants into the swirling angry waters, nor could they forget seeing the rubbish drift to the surface and float off. I imagine many night in their tents those children talked about such things. I am relating all this to show you what was in their minds and these experiences resulted in this younger generation being a wiser, more obedient generation to God’s word than the previous one, as they stood ready to cross the Jordan 40 years later waiting for God to do exactly the same for them – to again open the waters!


That early generation slowly moved from the Red Sea up through the wilderness unto Mt. Sinai and on to Kadesh-Barnea where they were preparing to cross over into the land of Canaan. However before crossing, Israel sent 12 spies to spy out the land, the people, the industrial, military, agricultural and scientifical standpoint and anything else which affect their cultural life. I have a definite reason for brining all this in as you will later see. Note, 40 years later after God has maneuvered the children of Israel through their desert wandering and the last of the old generation has died off, He now moves the new generation up to the Jordan River in view of the greatest fortified city throughout all the land of Canaan; militarily, economically, and scientifically this gentile city was the greatest, BUT IT IS GOING TO FALL! And how will the fall of Jericho apply to our day and hour? This we must later examine!


ARCHEOLOGISTS DESCRIBE JERICHO “OLDEST CITY KNOWN”


In has been well over 500 years since Abraham walked in this same land and it is not strange not once in Genesis do we find Abraham ever dwelling around or mentioning this city, yet it was very much a city even in his day. As a matter of fact, recent archeological discoveries made while digging around the old foundations of fallen Jericho show signs of civilizations reaching much farther back than just the period of destruction of Old Jericho, around 1400 B.C. Now they determined from new evidence discovered this could well be the oldest known city in the world! Recall, when the 12 spies ventured throughout the land 40 days investigating it, they returned with the same report as they were told coming out of Egypt; that it was a land flowing with milk and honey; it was a land filled with all kind of sweet things. Moses, after leaving Egypt, the Red Sea and Mt. Sinai, progressed slowly through the southern deserts of the Sinai peninsula. Making their laborious journey to be northward through the rugged highlands east of the Dead Sea, at last they were poised, ready to infiltrate the pasture lands and wooded hills which lay invitingly open to Israel between the fortified walled cities of Canaan. However blocking their pathway into this green pasture flowing with milk and honey of the promised land was the River Jordan, and between the river and the fertile valleys of the west lay that fortified city of Jericho; that ancient city which even during that hour was undoubtedly one of the oldest occupied cities in that part of the world. Although Jericho is 825 feet below sea level, as one would have viewed the city from the Jordan, it appears to be standing on a high plateau backed by towering cliffs. From a distance it looked green carrying a fragrant smell, and because of its good water supply the fields and groves of balsam were under intensive cultivation.


JERICHO’S LOCATION AND STRATEGIC IMPORTANCE


Jericho’s location was strategically important as it domineered the Jordan crossing, on the direct East-West route which ran from Chaldea up the Euphrates through the Arabian Desert; crossed the King’s Highway at Petra and ended in the North-South coastal route along the Mediterranean from Sidon and Tyre to Egypt. Jericho, with its striving commerce was situated on a high plateau, well watered through irrigation. Its rich soil abundantly grew vegetables, grapes, grains, figs, dates and the famous balsam tree which from it was produced an aromatic resinous substance (sometime now used medically in cough syrups, etc.). Furthermore, it served to sweeten the stench laden air of the cities in that day. In short, we can say Jericho was the prize of the gentiles. Yes, the spies thrilled the hearts of Israel in describing the lands as truly a land flowing with milk and honey, nevertheless, ten of the spies had more to add to their report which produced a far different attitude within the people. Those people there said the spies, make us look like grasshoppers they are so large! They also have great walled cities, the like of which we have never seen before, you see, they had spied Jericho and the sight of Jericho frightened them. But what Israel did not know was the inhabitants of this land were terrified of them. How often God tries our faith only to see if we are willing to walk with Him or will we lean on the arm of flesh and then begin searching for an easy way out. Beloved, remember this, if God has promised He will do a certain thing, it matters not how impossible it may look according to the law of reason, God will do it! God had promised them the land, He would not have wavered in His promise, however when the 12 returned after having spied the land for 40 days only 2 came with a good report, Caleb and Joshua.


A NIGHT OF DECISION AND WHAT IT COST


WHAT A NIGHT THAT WAS IN THE CAMP OF ISRAEL AS THE REPORT OF THE TEN SPIES CIRCULATES THROUGHOUT THE VAST CAMP OF ISRAEL. Laying there in the tents that night many of them scarred from beatings received from the whips of hard taskmasters in Egypt. How often had they been knocked down and left to die in some slime pit as they were compelled to make brick! For some reason they seemed to have forgotten all those miserable days very quickly because now they are making a great decision and that decision must be reached on the basis of what someone has seen! That something is a report delivered by ten men which overnight turned the camp of Israel at Kadesh-Barnea into nothing but a frightened, confused, grumbling mess. The longer they talked the more confused and frightened they became. Finding so much fault with their present situation they finally declared in despair; WOULD TO GOD WE HAD STAYED IN EGYPT AND DIED THERE! MOSES BRINGS US OUT HERE TO FALL BY THE SWORD, etc. And like us, so often, little did they realize all their murmuring and complaining that night was being registered in heaven and by morning God declared – THIS GENERATION IS NOT GOING OVER!


OLDER GENERATION DIES IN UNBELIEF


We are only refreshing your memory on a story perhaps you already know, how God told Moses that first generation which had been out of Egypt only a few months would be required to wander aimlessly throughout the desert 40 years until the old generation perished and the only ones permitted to go over would be those 20 years and under, which naturally included the babies for it had been the older generation, not the children, who grumbled and complained. You led us out in the desert for our babies to die with no decent memorial! However, I want you to notice God was going to reverse this thing. He was going to permit the young ones to live and go over into the land but cause the old ones to die off in the desert. God did just this, and beloved, once God has spoken such a thing it cannot be changed under any circumstances. Although not permitted to enter the land, I want you to note for 40 years that old generation continued to enjoy the manna which fell from heaven and never knew what it was for 40 years to wear out shoes or clothing.


CURSED GENERATION ALSO ENJOYS BENEFITS OF GOD


Think of it friends, today with all of the modern technology we are unable to make clothing as durable as that! Many may say, that is too much to believe, that is one account I can’t accept in the scriptures. Beloved, it we can’t accept that we might as well throw the entire book in the ditch! Israel for 40 years never had a tailor shop nor shoe cobbler shop. After the experience of Kadesh-Barnea, Israel began that long period of wilderness wandering of uncertainty. God is now going to keep them out in the middle of all these desert sand dunes and hot rocks with nothing for company but scrub brush as they drift and wander from place to place, seeing nothing day after day but hot blistering sun and burning desert sand and barren bleached rock when they could have been inside the land feasting on the riches and goodness of God He had promised to them. Oh yes, there was another miracle Paul spoke which went with them for 40 years, A ROCK! From that ROCK, they, their children, their cattle and everything drank from it (Numbers 20:8) yet they continued to wander aimlessly on in the hot burning desert with seldom a shade tree in sight. Had they obeyed God they would have been sitting under shade trees in the promised land, but now their only comfortable shade would be from a sheep or goat skin. Once in a while a calf would die or a curse would fall upon Israel claiming the lives of many thousands (I Corinthians 10:8) yet wherever they wandered, they mourned and buried their dead. No, there wasn’t any certain burial place in the desert; no markers to mark the graves yet the younger generation who stands at the Jordan ready to move into the promised land can no doubt recall every location of every graveyard wherein they buried dad, mother, uncle and aunts as well as they can recall the day they stepped into the Red Sea walking on dry ground.


NEW GENERATION BELIEVERS


Beloved, this new generation standing ready for marching orders to cross the Jordan was not a generation which doubted and had to be destroyed as was that older generation which the Lord moved out of the land of Egypt only to have to destroy because of unbelief (Jude 5). No sir, this was s new generation which laid hold to the promise of God, and as they stood on the other side of Jordan they were fully aware it was the grace of God which would take them across. No doubt about it, this new generation had certainly been put through the mill. Just think, many of them had come all the way from Egypt; many had slid down the banks of the Red Sea and climbed out on the other side; many could easily recall seeing those terrified Egyptians disappearing beneath the great wall of water as their screams were silenced by the roar of tons of water. I imagine they had spent many nights with these events fresh in their minds as they drifted off to sleep, and for 40 years they had been forced to wander realizing in their hearts they were wandering because Dad and Mother had grumbled and complained and found disfavor with God. Yes, in this younger generations’ heart they knew the day would come they would see that promised land. However, it would not be until the old crowd was dead! Nevertheless, this older generation still drank from that same ROCK as did the younger generation (I Corinthians 10:1-5) and ate the same manna, but through it all it had not changed their attitude nor their mind in the least nor had it changed God’s mind concerning their destiny. God said to the older generation – YOU WILL WANDER UNTIL EVERYONE OF YOU DIE!


Many times God brings people to a point of decision and there is a place in making that decision if you grumble and complain too much, after that it isn’t going to do you one bit of good to entreat God because as these Israelites found out, it wouldn’t work! You don’t change the mind of God, once He has offered something to you and you fail in it, then you just don’t change God’s mind.


YOUNGER GENERATION PREPARES FOR CROSSING


As this new generation stood there that day watching those two spies cross the Jordan and go trudging toward that great city, Jericho, they knew why they were going and they began making the necessary preparations. Every woman was making preparations concerning her children and her tent; every man knew he was a soldier and now he has a far different attitude and outlook concerning the whole thing than did that of his dad or his uncle 40 years prior. All they had encountered had shaped their lives, the Red Sea experience, crossing the hot burning, blistering sands of the desert, etc.. (When Israel’s army went through that Sinai desert with armored tanks in her 6 day war, 1967, one report of how they handled their captured prisoners (when there would be so many) was this, not wanting to kill off part of the prisoners whereby only a few soldiers could handle them, they made the Egyptians take off their belts and shoes. They wear loose trousers. Watch the psychology of this. When you are standing on hot sand with no shoes and no belt to hold up hour loose trousers, you aren’t going to cause much trouble). Israel in that hot blistering sand of the Sinai had buried their fathers, mothers and family and though unmarked they knew where they all lay, however in times to come all traces would be destroyed.


NEW GENERATION REQUIRES NEW LEADERSHIP


Picking up our story 40 years later, the older generation is dead. A new group (new blood) has come on the scene. Moses, God’s servant, has gone off the scene as well as Miriam and Aaron. For this new generation it will require a complete new leadership although they still have the same commission; they still have the same goal and objective as when they left Egypt! Yes, they still have the same God who spoke to them, only now they have an obstacle in the way. (Jericho) However this obstacle looks somewhat different to this new generation than did it to the older crowd. Two men are out spying the land. Recall, 40 years ago they had all waited at Kadesh-Barnea quite a ways down the river, no where near that large metropolitan city of Jericho, doing exactly the same thing they were now doing, waiting for a report! However, the spies this time had been sent out from this new generation and it is not from Kadesh-Barnea but from just across the river of Jordan in sight of Jericho, the very strong-hold of the Canaanite, the city which the 10 spies looked upon 40 years ago and declared could not be taken.


Therefore, notice God has brought this new generation face to face with the very ultimate of impossibility! It is very strange, is it not, these two spies were not told to go spy out all the land as they were 40 years ago! No, they were told only to go spy out Jericho! In other words, they know we are coming so just go in and find out what they think about the whole situation. Israel is encamped by the river making preparations to cross in just a few days. God is setting this beautiful scene in motion. Two men have crossed the river late in the evening and walked in through the gates of Jericho, the very pride of the gentile Canaanites (such as would New York, Chicago, Berlin, Paris, Montreal and Rome of our day). This was the metropolitan city of the Canaanites and these two spies have just walked in the gates. WHY? To listen, to hear what is being said. Beloved, this new generation is going to take the land and note, they are going to begin with the toughest city first; they are going to the hard place first! Nevertheless, there is a great test that lies here for this new generation.


STORIES HEARD IN MARKET PLACE


What kind of stories do you suppose these spies heard in the market places and streets? For 40 years every kind of weird story imaginable had come to Jericho concerning that mysterious nation of wandering Israelites who left Egypt 40 years ago. No doubt the spies overheard such reports as; they never plant a garden, they never go to a grocery store and there are millions out there! How do they live? Oh, so many things they had heard! They are in the desert but never dig a well! How on earth do they survive? Someone said, I hear they all drink from a ROCK! A ROCK, YOU MUST BE CRAZY! Some say they live off the grace of their God! Yes sir, those people living in metropolitan Jericho no doubt had received every caravan passing through or returning from countries round about and these Camel caravans had picked up stories as they had traveled through the desert of how that little nation could exist. How could a desert supply enough for millions? IMPOSSIBLE! Oh sure, at times they died like flies and they left big graveyards here and there, however they never left any signs of having planted a garden; they never appeared in a town to buy groceries or clothing; they never dug a well for water and each morning they always had manna for food and a ROCK went constantly with them. These Canaanite simply couldn’t understand how anyone could exist that long-surely somewhere at sometime they would run out of something! (Deuteronomy 8:1-10)


THE ONE PERSON GOD PERMITTED SPIES TO CONTACT


These spies had come into Jericho for one purpose, to spy out the city and look the situation over. While doing this they came in contact with Rahab, the harlot. Now, in the eyes of all logical reasoning this was a very foolish person for God to allow them to meet, an ill-famed woman of the street. In our day she would have had the worst reputation of anyone in town, nevertheless she happened to be the very one they met! During their conversation she began to tell them of the things they had heard concerning the children of Israel. The report of what happened at the Red Sea 40 years ago. Recall, Jericho was not too far from the Red Sea. Who had given this report? Certainly no Israelite had been there to tell the story nor would an Egyptian have told of such a crushing defeat for them! How else could Jericho have heard these reports except by the passing caravans and brother, I don’t believe these reports stopped at Jericho but went all the way to Chaldea of what God did at the Red Sea. No doubt as these Canaanites at Jericho listened to the stories their hearts continually melted within them for fear! They also had heard of the terrible destruction of the Ammorite kings Sihon and Og, and their hearts became more faint for this was reaching closer to home. Each report that came to Jericho was brining the Israelites closer. WHY? Because the 40 years of wandering was coming to an end. It wasn’t until the very ending of that period that God took Moses, Aaron and Miriam. The old leadership which had weathered the storm had been taken home! And now beloved, God has brought it to another place and equipped it with new blood and new strength!


TERROR 40 YEARS YET ISRAEL UNAWARE


There in Rahab the harlot’s home she begins to inform the spies how well the inhabitants of Jericho know what had happened the past 40 years and how it brought terror to the city. These two spies had no idea what God was going to do, they only knew they were here on a mission and were to report all these findings back to Joshua, who in turn would set the battle plans in order. As these two spies were being informed the gate watchers began to spread word around that Jericho had a couple of strangers in town. When this news reached the king he called in his forces instructing them to find the strangers. News reached Rahab’s house just in time for her to hide the spies. She told the soldiers a couple of men had come to her house and left although she had no idea who they were, but they could possibly overtake them if they would go quickly. Rahab certainly covered for the spies. She had hid them on the roof until the soldiers left in search of the strangers. Returning to the rooftop listen to what Rahab says, we know your Lord has sent you here and we also know you are coming into our land. We have heard how He promised you when you were in Egypt He was going to give you this land and we know our days are numbered. SHE KNEW IT! Rahab was a part of this city. She well remembered from a child those stories concerning those people and she knew the day had come that this people of Israel, who had wandered in the desert for 40 years, were now ready to occupy the land.


Beloved, is that not true spiritually speaking concerning this message. Sure there are some bad stories which have attached themselves to this message, that is in the way people do with what they hear, stories which have filtered through denominational people causing them to say they want no part of this message. By no means am I justifying the argument or confusion about it. I am defending the objective that is within this message! God would not justify the grumbling, complaining of the old crowd, no sir, but He certainly will justify the loyalty, ability and faith of this little bunch that had the same commission, the same vision and the same goal which was given to them in their hearts by God. They had the same story the old ones had, however this new group just saw things a little different! They saw everything the old ones saw because there were those now 50-60 years old who were teenagers when they walked out of Egypt when they heard the ram’s horn and Israel began to line up and stream out of Egypt toward the Red Sea. Now that new generation is camped just across the river in sight of Jericho; in sight of the strong-hold of the Canaanites, and if ever there was built a strong fortress this was it! Abraham never mentioned anything about Jericho although he did about Hebron, Bethel and Salem, yet God has caused this new generation to camp just across the river.


RAHAB HIDES SPIES AND RECEIVES SALVATION


Rahab warned the spies to go into the hills. I have seen those old archeological diggings of the old Jericho. Just about ½ mile behind old, ancient Jericho stands a mountain called today the Mt. Of Temptation. It was behind that mountain (history says) Jesus went to be tempted of the devil at the end of 40 days fasting. Throughout that chain of mountains are little honey-combed caves and it was there Rahab told the spies to flee and stay for three days before leaving. By that time the soldiers would have given up the search. She advised them of this route because if they crossed the lowlands to the river they would be spotted. Rahab’s house was built into the wall, therefore she lowered them down out side the wall through the window by a cord. As they were leaving Rahab asked the spies to promise to remember her and her household when they came into the land. They instructed Rahab when they should come into the land to gather all her kin in her house and hang the same scarlet cord out the window which she used to help them escape and all the Israelites would know it was the home of the one who sheltered the spies and they would be spared. However, if she should tell this to anyone she was as good as dead, she would NOT BE SPARED.


JERICHO TERRIFIED


I believe the thing that made those two spies return to camp rejoicing was all the people within the city were terrified. THAT WAS THE REPORT THEY WANTED TO HEAR! Certainly they also saw those great gigantic walls of the city, however these two spies never said, how are we ever going to get over the thing; we haven’t a latter nor is there any tree; how could we ever get our entire army over those walls. Through it all they felt God knew exactly what He was doing. The one thing they discovered, JERICHO WAS FRIGHTENED! They did not have courage for anything and that feeling is not only in Jericho but everywhere up and down the length and breadth of the land, THEY ARE ALL AFRAID OF ISRAEL! They were in that condition 40 years ago although Israel did not know it!


GENTILES STILL FEAR ISRAEL


That is the way they still are over there today, beloved. I don’t say that disrespectful toward any race of people, I only state it in the light of God’s word. GOD IS STILL WITH ISRAEL. Why, because it is through that race of people God is intending to fulfill certain prophecy for this earth, therefore these statements are made in respect to God’s word.


PART 2 – WHERE JOSHUA PLACES MINISTRY IS IMPORTANT

Returning to camp, the two spies enthusiastically reported their findings to Joshua, THE PEOPLE OF JERICHO ARE AFRAID, THEY HAVE NO COURAGE! Chapter 3 informs us the order of Israel’s crossing the Jordan. My, this crossing of the Jordan was quite different from that at the Red Sea. Since that crossing Israel had been given the Law which was written upon the two tablets of stone and carried in a box called The Ark of the Covenant which had a lid on it and golden rings on each side whereby a pole could be inserted and the box could be carried on the shoulders of priests (or ministry). Recall, Moses did not have that when they crossed the Red Sea. Nevertheless, Joshua does, and now he informs this new ministry or the (new) priests they are to bear this ark of the covenant. Now watch carefully, when the time comes for crossing, Joshua made sure there would be a certain interval of distance between the ministry who bore the ark and the congregation of the people. The purpose was once the priests stepped into the water carrying the Ark of the Covenant, which contained the Law on the tablets of stone, there would be a pillar of smoke hover over the Ark day and night wherever the box was. As the priests moved out the distance was maintained between the ranks of people and the priests which enabled everyone of the huge multitude, from the rear to the front, to see exactly the route taken by the priests, whereas if the priests were jammed right in front of the people, only those close up would be able to see which way the box went and those on the end of the line would only be FOLLOWING THE CROWD. That beloved has quite a meaning.


ARRANGEMENT OF PEOPLE BEHIND MINISTRY AND WHY


The distance God placed between those priests carrying the box and the people themselves allowed those in the very rear ranks to see the route the box was taking. This arrangement let him know he was not just following something because the crowd was; he could see the box, he could see the Shekinah Glory; he could see the same body of priests (or ministry) as did those in the front ranks. I want you to know as they prepared for the crossing this was just as thrilling and adventuresome to those Israelites of the new generation as it ever was to that old generation, seeing they neither had bridges, boats or barges available. On the opposite side of the Jordan (6 miles) in sight lay the huge fortified city of Jericho, all illuminated by the rising of the sun. Beloved, as that early morning sun rises over the valley on the camp of the Israelites that morning they were to make their glorious crossing, I can see every camel packed for the crossing; every ordained priest who is to carry the box stoops over and places it upon their shoulders. Oh, what a sight to behold, THE MINISTRY STANDING IN THEIR PROPER RANKS and the sound of a rams horn is heard throughout the camp to MOVE OUT and a cheer goes up throughout the entire Israelite camp. For days they have waited for this event and upon hearing the report of the two spies that Jericho is in terror because of them they are ready to move. The priests step forward to the water, recall, this move came in the month Abib, the spring of the year when Mt. Nebo sent her melting snow down into the Sea of Galilee and the Jordan’s banks are overflowing as the waters rush on toward that Salt Sea. God let them cross, not in the dry summertime when the Jordan would be shallow in places, no sir, He let them cross when the Jordan was in full blast. No sooner did those priest’s feet (those carrying the Ark of the Covenant) hit the water, WATCH WHAT HAPPENED! (Joshua 3:13-17)


JORDAN CEASES FLOWING


We believe it happened because it is Bible history, yet to these people it was an experience which made them jump up and down along the bank. Suddenly when those priest’s feet hit the water the Jordan stopped flowing! (Psalms 114:3) Some magnetic force had stopped that river right there while the rest of the waters below them kept flowing down to the Salt Sea. After awhile dry rocks began to appear on the bottom, and beloved this sight sent a chill and a thrill throughout the entire host of Israel. WHY? Because they could remember when as young boys and girls a strong wind once blew all night and they watched the mighty Red Sea divide, and here they are seeing rocks becoming bleached and dry as the sun shines directly upon them.


JERICHO AND REACTION TO STOPPED WATER


Some 6 miles from the Jordan the same sun was rising upon a city from which the two spies had escaped after gathering information for Joshua. Watching from the wall towers the guards in Jericho saw what was happening! They had been closely observing the people. Looking at it from a military standpoint, in Jericho every soldier on that wall knew that group of people wasn’t camped across the Jordan for nothing. No doubt the guards have been doubled and all reserves were alerted for standby duty! I can imagine those nervous soldiers walking from post to post saying, WHAT ARE THEY UP TO? The reports of what had happened 40 years ago had never died down. Now they, like Pharaoh, are about to experience something. As the sun rose higher in the heavens the entire valley was bathed in light and with the atmosphere perfectly clear there wasn’t a single obstacle to hinder or block the view which God has ordained for this new generation. I can see high on the walls of Jericho walks the guards protecting a city built so impregnable that the Canaanites thought there wasn’t anything that could take it, (now they are not so confident). Considering Jericho was built upon a high plateau, the tops of those massive walls possible reached 150-200 feet into the air, certainly it provided them with a marvelous view. I can see these watchful guards as they nervously walked their post and continually file their reports back down to the officers in charge, who in turn keeps the king informed.


When that great eventful morning took place and those priests set foot into the Jordan River and the waters began to roll back you can rest assured the hearts of those guards observing from the high walls of Jericho were pounding with fear. Beloved, the minute those guards spotted the waters of the Jordan backing up, I can see them as their hearts melts within them for the scripture declares Israel crossed in sight of Jericho. In Israel you have never seen such excitement as they simply could not contain themselves, and yet they had the very commission of God to follow His leadership as did the older generation. Along the walls of Jericho brother the story was different. I want you to know that guard didn’t just casually say, Officer of the day, guess what? Sir, you won’t believe this, but it is the truth, the Jordan River just stopped flowing. NO SIR, that was not the way he reported it at all. When this phenomena happened I can see those guards rushing around asking what was going on? With fear and trembling voices they shouted, THE JORDAN ISN’T RUNNING! THE WATERS HAVE STOPPED FLOWING! Below the divided waters, it continued flowing on toward the Salt Sea and up and down the Jordan those rocks began to shine and it wasn’t long until they began to dry off as the wall of water simply continued to stand there. Those poor frightened guards began to run from post to post as the city now calls in the reserves – MAN THE TOWERS!! The city of Jericho was shaken as it had never been before, LOCK THE GATES, BAR THEM! As those priests stepped into the swelling Jordan waters and stood there, Israel crossed over. No, there wasn’t a strong east wind blowing, just some men standing in the water carrying a box. Whoever heard of such a ridiculous thing.


Looked silly didn’t it, but it worked, and on the walls of Jericho guards watched those men step into the water with a box on their shoulders AND SAW THAT RIVER STOP FLOWING. Every guard was now posted, all reserves called out as the report began to circulate among the terrified people of Jericho – THE JORDAN HAS STOPPED FLOWING! YOU DON’T MEAN IT, OH MY, WE ARE DONE FOR! I am dramatizing it, but I want you to know as those guards stood there on the wall sending the report down no doubt the king sent special runners throughout Jericho to warn the people, because when Israel had fully crossed over the report had gone throughout the Canaanite city and also the land of Ammorites that THE JORDAN HAD STOPPED FLOWING! The report had to come from Jericho as this was the point of crossing. The crossing took hours, long enough for Jericho to sound the alarm, call out all their guards and soldiers, secure the gates, etc.


RAHAB JUSTIFIED BY WORKS – JAMES 2:25


What about Rahab the harlot whom the spies had promised protection, what was she doing? I can see her saying to her kin, they are on their way, come on if you want to be saved. It is time to get under the protection of God’s grace. When the Jordan stopped flowing the entire city was alerted and recalling what happened to Pharaoh’s Army 40 years ago, knew what was in store for them.


12 MEN, 12 STONES


That evening as the sun was setting, all Israel was now safely on the west side of Jordan in the Land. As the last of the Israelites crossed over, Joshua instructed twelve men to return into the Jordan and take up the best stones and set up an altar to the Lord in the Jordan which would be a memorial to the generations that should follow. The wise counselors of Israel declared: “He who sees the spot on the Jordan, where Israel crossed, is bound to offer up thanks to God.”


TWO CROSSINGS IN SAME MONTHS AND WHAT IT MEANS


Is it not strange that Israel’s new generation crosses the Jordan River in the same month as that of the older generation when they came out of Egypt (Abib). This lets me know that God gave to this younger generation the same promise He gave to the older generation 40 years prior. In a sense, He is going to give this new generation the same kind of experience or protection He gave the older group. Yes, they have the very same God to move away every obstacle before them the older generation had. Although it should be noted here five days after Israel crossed Jordan the manna which had followed them throughout their desert journey ceased falling and now they must eat the fruit of the promised land.


Try to visualize the turmoil and terror God has now allowed Jericho to encounter as word reaches them the Jordan was dried up! It literally frightened the entire land. Fear which has possessed them for 40 years has now suddenly had a revival. Those guards standing awestruck and dumbfounded upon the wall witnessed a sight which could never be erased from their memories as they watched the Jordan cease flowing. Just think, beloved, when a soldier has been trained to be brave in the face of the enemy and sees something like this he knows it is something he can’t cope with. Sure, he may stand unmoveable and face an oncoming chariot charging against him, that is something in the natural realm. However, when he witnesses water dividing and standing upright, that is something his spirit can’t cope with, he knows that is coming from some power of the supernatural and he has not been trained to deal with the supernatural. Therefore, with a trembling, frightened voice, from his position on the high wall he gives out such an alarming sound it further terrifies the city causing their hearts to melt that much more within them. Reserves are called in, but what good can they do. Their hearts have melted also! This report the scripture says went throughout all the Ammorite camp and over all the cities up and down the sea coast. In short, it terrified the entire land.


REPORT SAME AS 40 YEARS AGO


Isn’t this pathetic! What had already happened 40 years ago had already terrified the inhabitants of the land, yet these twelve spies said the land could not be taken. We look like grasshoppers in their sight! Oh, had Israel only known, grasshoppers nothing! It was Israel God had made to look like giants into these people. Note, these giant size people were in the land 40 years later and this new generation had to face the same thing their parents faced, however, experience had taught them regardless to the obstacles the grace of God was on their side. They carry the same commission, the same vision, and the same objective as did that of the older generation. Now they have a job to do and an obligation to fulfill, they have a loyalty to uphold and their hour for action has come.


Note, Israel, having fully crossed the Jordan, seems now in no hurry to attack and destroy Jericho. The fourth day has fully arrived in the promised land and the new generation is camped roughly three miles or half way between Jordan and Jericho at Gilgal, (Joshua 4:19, 5:10) It is here Israel keeps the annual passover. Recall, it is also here God sent His invisible army (angels) to insure or encourage Joshua (5:13-15). Furthermore, it is here on the fifth day the manna which has followed them through the desert ceases, Joshua 5:12.


FALL OF JERICHO – CHAPTER 6


God has brought them into the land to face what militarily would be thought AN IMPOSSIBILITY, yet He is going to take the impossible and reduce it to nothing. This miracle alone furnishes Israel with enough courage and confidence they do not stop until all the land has been taken from the Canaanites. The day approaches when God Himself has plans to set the battle. His plan of attack is quite simple, no military strategy has ever been used like this. The walls of that city will fall before one arrow or one sword has been used. Jehovah tells Joshua His plan is to send seven priests with seven ram horns serving as trumpets along with those carrying the ark of the covenant to lead the possession around the city once each day for 7 days. No attack is to be made, instead they are simply to return to camp after this is accomplished. As you are making the trip around the city each day have the priests blow the ram’s horn. Furthermore, God told Joshua the host of people following the priests must remain in complete silence at all times.


For days the nervous guards along the high walls of the city have been on double duty with all reserves called in. Every move Israel had made has been observed in her camp 3 miles away. None around Jericho has had much sleep, just sitting, watching and impatiently waiting for days. This uncertainty alone is enough to work on the nerves of the Canaanites. The Israelite camp has been under constant surveillance, although no effort has been made in the camp to move any closer. Then one day the guards noticed some strange movement in the Israelite camp. Look, their priests are placing that strange box back on their shoulders again. We might say this is putting a revival in Israel’s soul while it is putting great fear and turmoil in the hearts of the Canaanites in Jericho. Their report comes from the wall, THEY ARE ON THE MOVE AGAIN! Beloved, I can see those priests begin to slowly move out, armed not with carnal weapons but armed only with Ram’s horns. As the camp of Israel is forming ranks it is here they begin to slowly ascend the slopes reaching up to the plateau where sits their massive target – THE CITY OF JERICHO. MAN YOUR STATIONS, is the cry of the alarm! Every man is on the wall at his post of duty with arrows drawn, however Israel remains, throughout their march around the city, just outside the reach of the range of the arrows. On the wall every man stood with his weapon in hand, his neck stretched like a turkey gobbler wondering which way they were going and what were they up too! From the natural standpoint this looked completely silly, an entire army following peculiarly dressed men carrying a box. Note, once Israel had completed their circle around the city, whose walls through excavations have proven to be approximately seven acres around, when the last man completed his round it no doubt had made a full circle.


THE 6 DAY MARCH THE SAME


Everything had been dead silent up to this point and it is only the priest who breaks that silence as they lift to their lips the ram horns, blowing a loud clear sound which of course brings fresh terror to Jericho for they believe this is a signal for an attack. Instead there is no attack, the marchers simply return to Gilgal, their camp. Back to camp and the sun set. The next morning the same thing is repeated, however, once again they did not attack only returned to camp as before. By the third day fear temporarily begins to leave the Canaanites and the soldiers may find this affair of marching around their city quite humorous, wondering just what they are going to do next. Little do they realize God is simply throwing them off guard as He lulls them to sleep. The next day the same procedure. Feeling now the Israelites will not attack, Jericho sees this more and more humorous. I imagine some began to say, look at that old fellow down there, isn’t he dressed strange! And they began to jest and make jokes. For the moment fear seems to have subsided a little with each passing day. Next day, the identical same march is repeated, always remaining out of firing range but by now Israel’s thousands of troops marching around the city have made quite a visible beaten path as they have marched day after day. No doubt from the inside the soldiers are beginning to feel, they are only trying to scare us, leave them alone they will go away. They know they can’t get in. The sun rises on the 6th day and the same procedure is repeated. None makes a sound, only the ram’s horn is sounded during the march. Why, they have been doing this six days and no one has gotten hurt, some of the officers in Jericho, may have said. Call off the reserves and let them get some sleep, after all we won’t need them. But oh, my, about the time those reserves were catching up on some much needed sleep the sun is ready to rise on the dreadful 7th morning, the day Jericho will sleep the sleep of death forever!


7TH DAY DIFFERENT FROM OTHER 6


The Israelite camp is up and ready before dawn. This is the morning Israel has long awaited. Today she must make seven trips around the city. As the sun rays breaks, the horizon that morning everyone is in ranks, the priests know exactly what to do, as well as does every man know his position. Arming themselves with their weapons as the entire valley is now well lit with sunlight and the priests take their position in front of the army to lead the way back to Jericho, inside Jericho most are slumbering and relaxing for no doubt they think this will just be another day for another march, they will hear the same old horns blasting away again.


7 TRIPS ON 7TH DAY


As those seven priests step out leading the march that will carry the army of Israel around the wall on their well beaten path 7 times today the first guard on the tower probably says, Look, it is the same old circle! But beloved something strange happened after they had made one complete circle, this time they did not return to camp but instead began marching around again. As they were making their second round those puzzled tower guards began to wonder, WHAT IS GOING ON NOW, USUALLY THEY ONLY MARCH ONCE A DAY! The second time round and they still did not return to camp. The third time around, the fourth time around, the fifth, and sixth time around the walls, in the heart of the Israelites they can hardly wait until the 7th time round. No doubt in the minds of the Canaanites, when are they going to stop this? Today every man in Israel has his sword, however Jericho doesn’t know that. Israel knows what is going on but Jericho is in the dark. Jericho is confused. God has completely thrown them off guard, she has been taken in by so many circles and her excitement has built again by the strange action of Israel and it causes their hearts to melt inside them. That is just the way God does things. He shakes you up, you are so confused, He takes you on a merry-go-round and when He turns you loose you don’t know what happened. Beloved, I see these priests as they start around the wall for the final trip.


Imagine what a peculiar sight this scene must have presented from the wall as day after day some 40,000 warriors and the rest of the host of Israel marched slowly, cautiously and silently following only priests, ram horns and a box! And with this they are going to tear down our wall? In this procedure was no siege machines to throw huge boulders; no tower or battering rams to bring down the wall; no ladders or hooks to be used to go over the wall; and above all, no noise other than the constant marching of feet. Occasionally the silence would be broken by those piercing shattering blasts of the ram horns which in itself brought cold fear as despair crept over them and their hearts grew faint.


THE 7TH ENCIRCLEMENT THE LONG BLAST


As they marched around that wall the 7th time and the last man has completed the circle, there the army of Israel stops with a complete circle all around the seven acres or so of the city, having now made seven complete circles around on the 7th day – THEY COME TO A COMPLETE STOP IN DEAD SILENCE! Suddenly the silence is broken by the blast of those ram’s horns and Joshua cries out to the people, Shout, for the Lord has given you the city! How God actually brought down the walls is really unimportant. Whether by earthquake tremors at just the precise moment or those vibrations from the victorious shouts of Israel’s host or some other miracle, the point is: through complete obedience of the ministry (or priesthood) the soldiers and people in general, those walls came flat down. (Joshua 6:20) So the people went into the city of luxury and evil and utterly destroyed every living thing saving only Rahab and her family.


WALLS COME FLAT DOWN


For a moment I would like to discuss this phrase, “the walls came flat down.” To do so we must use an archeological discovery of the noted Dr. John Garstang, director of the British School of Archeology in Jerusalem. In excavating the ruins of Old Jericho, 1929-36, Dr. Garstang and his trained staff found vivid evidence that the city had been destroyed some time around 1400 B.C., coinciding with Joshua’s period and, in a number of details, dug up evidence confirming the biblical account that the walls did fall down flat as declared in Joshua 6:20. The wall was double and the two walls being 15 ft. apart, showed the outer wall to have been 6 ft. thick while the inner wall was 12 ft. thick. Apparently the walls had been built on somewhat of a faulty, uneven foundation of brick 4 inches thick and 1-2 ft. long, lay in mud mortar. The two walls were linked together by houses built across the top, as scripture referred to Rahab’s house being on the wall. Dr. Garstang found the outer wall fell outward and down the hillside which naturally dragged with it the inner house. The evidence of the streak of bricks gradually getting thinner down the slope proves it fell in this angle. The foundation walls of the palace of the king (Joshua 2:2-3) was four courses of stone high, remain, tilted outward. The archeologist feels there are indications remaining to show it might have been an earthquake which brought down the wall. However, it is also interesting to note vibrations have been known to bring down well constructed objects. For instance, a similar incident happened (though on a much smaller scale) in Mayette, Kansas on Sunday, May 17, 1959, when the spectator bleachers at a rodeo collapsed suddenly as the people were leaving resulting in the death of one person and injuring 149 other people. The promoter stated the only explanation he could account for the collapse of the stands was THE RHYTHMATIC STEPS OF THE CROWD AS IT SHUFFLED TOWARD THE EXITS MAY HAVE STARTED THE STRUCTURE SWAYING UNTIL IT CRUMBLED.


Another point of interest I would like to touch on is, after Israel fulfilled Joshua 6:21 (destroying all the living) they burned the city with fire. Dr. Garstang found signs of the conflagration and destructions were very well marked. The archeologist found great layers of charcoal and ashes and walled ruins reddened by fire. The outer wall suffered most. Houses along the wall were burned to the ground. The area generally was covered with a dep layer of black burned debris, under which there were pockets of white ash overlaid with a layer of fallen reddish brick. In connection with verse 18, wherein Joshua instructed the people to keep themselves from the accursed things, “lest ye make yourselves a curse when you take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel accursed and trouble it.” And you recall, Achan did not agree with this taking unto himself several items. After the army was stopped at Ai, it resulted in the death of he and his family.


The archeologist further discovered under the ashes and fallen walls a most interesting thing. In the ruins of storehouses was an abundance of foodstuff, wheat, barley, dates and lentils and such, turned to charcoal by intensive heat, untouched and uneaten. Evidence the conquerors refrained from confiscating the food.


JOSHUA’S CURSE


Concerning the amazing prophecy of a curse pronounced upon anyone who ever would attempt to rebuild the city (verse 26), read I Kings 16:34. It is interesting to note that the New Testament Jericho is built approximately 1 mile south of the ruins of Old Jericho.


PART 3 – SPIRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE


Have you ever wondered what the significance of these seven ram horns are? Many times I have asked myself what do these seven ram horns signify? Israel as a nation we know did not have 7 ages or 7 dispensations in the sense the gentile church did, nevertheless, there was things represented about that city that applies strictly to our day. Furthermore, why did Israel march around the walls 7 times on the 7th day and then blow the horns? Last, why was the 7th day different from the other six, and what does it signify?


HEIGHT OF GENTILE ACHIEVEMENT


First, I want you to note this city of Jericho stood for the highest of man’s gentile achievements in that hour when Israel was coming into the land. For centuries of time that city was the gentile’s pride, their culture, their scientific achievements were all represented within that city’s structure. Their architecture was represented there; their material advantage and benefits were all represented within this city. Jericho was the capitol of the Canaanites. Their military might, all their growth, their progress, their achievements of whatever in human life that could be obtained in that hour was represented in that day.


As for modern culture Israel had little to offer having been in the wilderness. All they knew was THERE WAS A GOD LEADING THEM. They were minus that great military training of that hour. True, they had helped erect many of the great pyramids and sphinx over in the cities of Egypt, although you might say they were not great architects. But oh, brother, God had brought Israel face to face with the very might, the best the gentiles had to offer.


WHAT WAS FULLY REPRESENTED HERE WAS A FUTURE PICTURE OF THE GENTILE AGES WHEN ISRAEL WOULD ONCE AGAIN BE LED BACK INTO THAT LAND OUT OF ALL GENTILE NATIONS AFTER HAVING BEEN BROUGHT THROUGH ALL SERVITUDE AND IT WOULD ACTUALLY BE AT THAT TIME THEY WOULD SETTLE IN THAT LAND TO NEVER BE PLUCKED UP AGAIN. AND IT WOULD BE WHEN THE MIGHT OF THE GENTILES HAS COME TO ITS CONSUMMATION OR PEAK. WHEN WOULD THAT BE? ARE YOU LISTENING? THAT WOULD COME ABOUT ONLY AT THE END OF SEVEN GENTILE CHURCH AGES! THOSE SEVEN PRIESTS REPRESENTS SEVEN MESSAGES TO THE SEVEN GENTILE CHURCH AGES AND NOTE BELOVED, THE DESTRUCTION AND FALL OF THE PRIDE OF THE GENTILES WOULD NOT COME UNTIL THE MESSENGER OF THE 7TH CHURCH AGE PICKS UP THE ECHO OF ALL THOSE OTHER SIX MESSAGES AND ALL THIS CLIMAX WITHIN THIS 7TH MESSAGE. THAT 7TH MESSAGE HAS BEEN SOUNDED AND BLASTED. WHEN? AT THE CLOSING OF THE LAODICEAN CHURCH AGE AND IT WOULD BE AT THAT TIME (NOTE THIS) WHEN GOD WOULD DEAL WITH ISRAEL AS THE MIGHT OF THE GENTILES HAS REACHED ITS FRUITION. THE GENTILES ARE AT THEIR END. INTELLECTUALLY, SCIENTIFICALLY, AND MILITARILY!


U.S. PRIDE OF GENTILES, BUT LOOK AT HER FEAR


United States is supposed the greatest world power of any nation in the world, and is a perfect illustration of what we mean! We have been fighting in a little nation called Vietnam over 10 long years, 1961-1972. America has lost 45,884 lives with a total wounded of 303,475. South Vietnam reports lost 157,917 lives with approximately 417,167 wounded. The civilian population killed is estimated at 425,000 with an estimated 900,000 enemy troops killed, making a grand total of soldiers and civilians dead of 1,539,082. America alone has spent since 1964, $107.8 billion. An amount second only to that of World War II where she spent $664 billion. Here we are with the most modern weapons man has ever killed with, the best gunboats, the best fighter planes, radar equipment, etc., we have gone back and forth across Vietnam like a man losing a checker game, but like Jericho, we too are scared.


On the other hand you take the little nation Israel, give her a handful of obsolete guns and she will simply scare the daylights out of anything that gets in her way. I am not trying to debase us gentiles, but it is a fact. Beloved, we have run our course and that includes every gentile nation on the face of the earth; we have built our fortifications, our atomic and hydrogen bombs and now we are scared to death. What we have allowed to continue in Vietnam for 10 years is the proof of our fear. We built powerful battleships only to rust in mothballs; we built a gigantic air force and what do we do, we sit around and argue, fuss and stew, while Israel is pleased to get our obsoletes and with them, and the guidance of God, she modifies a little here and there and down in the Sinai she goes.

 

 

Face it, Israel has returned to the land, she has come out from gentile nations this time to be established in the land forever. When? At the time the gentiles have reached the time of their fruition.


This is a day the gentiles boast of having gone to the moon. AND WHEN DID IT HAPPEN? As seven church ages come to a close! God sent His 7th church age messenger and his message was not only for this hour, nor did it consists of something new just for this age – HE REACHED BACK INTO THE OTHER AGES AND PICKED UP THE FIRST (BLAST), AS WELL AS THE 2ND, 3rd , 4TH, 5TH AND 6TH (this covers the 7 gentile church ages) ALTHOUGH EACH AGE HAD THEIR MESSENGER, THE LAST MESSENGER BROUGHT THEM DOWN AND INCORPORATED ALL THESE MESSAGES (ram horn blasts) INTO HIS MESSAGE (blast) WHICH WAS THE LAST TO SOUND.


When did this message come to us? At the close of the 7th church age, and as it did it went around this earth, and I can see God reach out and strike the economical situation of the world. Beloved, as a nation, America is broke. Furthermore, every gentile nation is broke! DO YOU KNOW WHY? God has to do this in order to bring things to naught, to glorify Himself. If Israel had Uncle Sam’s military potential she wouldn’t need anyone to support her, she would be sitting in a position to laugh at the world! Why? Because God can take a handful of Israelites in an hour when it is time and God desires to do a certain thing, and do to the gentiles, through that little nation, that which resembles what He did to a group of Jerichoites – and their hearts melted (within themselves) when they saw the Jordan’s waters back up.


Now to finish our lesson, on that final 7th day, that same day Israel marched around Jericho 7 times and blew those ram horns a long blast just before that tremendous shout of victory came. This lets me know the sounding of all 7 church age messengers message throughout all the seven church ages would already become and already have been sounded before the shout. (I Thessalonians 4:16-17)


WHAT LONG BLAST ON THE 7TH DAY MEANT


The last one represented the work and ministry of the 7th messenger as he incorporated all the revelation of those other messengers into this last great and final blast which shook the foundation of this religious world as it has never before been shaken! You see, God didn’t just send a prophet to this 7th church age to fulfill Malachi 4:5 simply to have the people going around the world saying GOD SENT A PROPHET, GOD SENT A PROPHET, but the important thing is – WHAT DID THAT PROPHET SAY? WHAT WAS THE BLAST OF HIS (ram horn) MESSAGE. I am interested only in what he said, he said GET BACK TO THE WORD OF GOD! And when he said BACK TO THE WORD OF GOD, it is back to what the original (33 A.D.) pentecost was; it is back to what our early apostolic fathers Peter, James, John and etc. taught. Beloved, this message encompassed the message of each messenger and brought it all right back to the word and as that messenger to this 7th church age was sounding, I can see little Israel over there – the fright of the gentiles, the fright of the world! It appears the entire world is against her! And you know, beloved, God has to allow it to be that way.


In the early months of 1972, Israel was getting her greatest influx of tourist trade. In 1971, her tourist trade went up 40 percent over the year before. January was really starting heavy until that Lod Airport massacre came and it looked as though the tourist trade would slow down – that was one of the purposes of the massacre. By doing this it would scare off many gentiles who would not want to be caught in such a situation. It is a way of shutting off dollars of Israel’s tourist trade! God is using this trade to milk the gentiles dry. Next there was that terrible, brutal thing at the Olympics.


We powerful nations won’t do anything about it but I know God will use that little nation to do something. You are not playing with a little kid, Israel might look like a small kid, nevertheless that little nation won’t take this sitting down. Before she is through someone will pay dearly!


When the 7th or last horn sounded after the circle had been completely united – oh, as that blast went up into the sky that morning, the earth began to tremble; those gigantic walls which had been built so impregnable by the architectural design of men who thought they knew how to do such a thing began to crumble! DOWN WENT THE WALLS! As it did, every man in that circle did a left flank and marched straight forward over that old crumbled wall of Jericho and slew everything in his path. May I say this, before Israel had marched around that city 7 times and even before the Jordan dried up, great fear had already possessed those poor Jerichoites, and once those walls did begin to tremble as that great shout went up, the earth began to tremble and the walls began to tremble and fall there simply wasn’t any courage whatsoever left within them. They were so frightened no doubt all they did was fall on their face. Over the walls with swords gleaming in the sunlight came the victorious fearless Israelites. GOD HAD BROUGHT THE GENTILE STRONGHOLD TO AN END!


As the victory report spread throughout the land, there was not an Ammorite nor Canaanite that was not full of fear. God did that to allow everyone to know HE WAS ON THE MOVE; HIS PEOPLE WAS ON THE MOVE! You will recall their next stop was Ai, that little city which they should have taken in an hour’s time, however, God did not let them capture Ai, because there was sin in the camp. It was a lesson well learned and after the problem was removed (stoning of Achan and family) the army moved on undefeated. When Israel was in the perfect will of God there wasn’t a tribe could stand against her or a city to stand in her way!


Beloved, this has been said to let you know there has been one powerful trumpet message sounded over this land. To me I can see the beautiful prophetical picture of things being unfolded, and looking at it from a spiritual standpoint I believe there has also been many people privileged in years go by to have entered into it and had they seen the true spiritual objective of God in the beginning they would have moved on with God. However, they did exactly like many of the older generation of Israelites did! There is a lot of fanaticism and by the time some people get through saying the prophet said this or that, THEY WERE COMPLETELY OUT OF THE BIBLE REVELATION OF TRUTH AND OVER IN A LAND OF FEAR AND UNBELIEF.


Beloved, may I say this in closing, if you ever intended to be anything for God; if you ever intended to truly walk in fellowship, victorious over your battles with the enemy, this message that the 7th church age messenger prophet uttered is that which can place you back on the true foundation of the Word and place within you the kind of faith whereby we can say with Paul – God hath not given us the spirit of fear (that which possessed the older generation causing them to die in the wilderness) but of power and of love and a sound mind! (II Timothy 1:7) This message shows us how to rightly divide the Bible and how to use this sword against the enemy without fear. No wonder for centuries of time the devil has sought to destroy the effectiveness of this book. If he can ever get you out of its revelation and into a tradition, cult, or creed, HE HAS YOU LICKED! If you have suffered this defeat, RETURN TO GOD’S WORD OF REVELATION WHEREBY YOU HAVE SOMETHING UPON WHICH TO STAND WITHOUT FEAR AND UNBELIEF!

The Fan In Christ’s Hand- What Is It?

INTRODUCTION: OF ALL PROPHETS, JOHN ALONE REFERRED TO AN OBJECT IN CHRIST’S HAND CALLED THE FAN. WHAT IS IT AND TO WHAT PURPOSE IS IT USED? WHAT GENERATION SHALL FEEL ITS BLOWING EFFECTS? HOW DOES THIS FAN, FROM WHICH NONE SHALL ESCAPE, AFFECT THE ENDTIME PEOPLE? READ HOW AND BY WHAT MEANS CHRIST BOTH BAPTIZES AND APPLIES A FAN UPON HIS WHEAT FLOOR WITHOUT BEING BODILY PRESENT!


Let us familiarize ourselves with this particular subject called THE FAN by first studying the scriptures which serve as the key to unlock this great hidden truth. (St. Matt. 3:11-12; Luke 3:16-17). I am convinced too often we are guilty of overlooking what we would call these little insignificant words found in the scriptures and we treat them as though they were so unimportant when actually its just the opposite-THEY ARE VITALLY IMPORTANT! Take for instance this little 3 letter word John referred to which the Holy Ghost called the Fan. Few people have ever thought such a small word as it is applied to their life could be a matter of spiritual life or spiritual death and I have my doubts if very many people have taken into consideration the depth of the statement which John, under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, made when speaking on this particular statement.


Contents

FOUR ASPECTS OF THE FAN


Together we are going to approach and analyze these verses which are not recorded any other place than through the ministry of John the Baptist. There are four important things in connection with this fan that we must be spiritual enough to catch or we shall miss its entire operation. (1) What is the Fan? (2) How does it operate? (3) When and where and upon whom will the operation of the fan be felt as he deals with his wheat? Also (4) we want to show how there could be only one period of time in which this fan could operate and that is only within this generation shall we begin to see the effects of this discovered fan as it is brought into its full effectiveness. May I say beloved, there is a fan now in operation which is truly blowing and separating the chaff from the wheat.


THE SETTING


Our setting is at the River Jordan where John the Baptist, clothed in the spirit of Elijah (Mal. 4:5-6; Luke 1:17), was steadily baptizing. Israelites who were coming unto him from all parts of the land of Judah and Jerusalem after having confessed their sins. (Mark 1:5) Paul speaking to the Ephesians said, John truly baptized with the baptism of repentance saying unto the people that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is on Christ Jesus who would baptize with the Holy Ghost. Acts 19:4. Naturally, as such a host of people came out to hear John, submitting themselves to baptism, this was causing a great spectacular stir up at Jerusalem, perhaps some 30 or more miles from the scene where John was publicly baptizing. Therefore, an investigating committee from the Judaistic hierarchy has been sent forth to question John as to who he is, about his strange doctrine and if he is not the Christ nor the actual Elijah for whom they had all been looking before the time of their Messiah to arrive, why was he baptizing; for they knew only too well this uncouth individual, dressed in camel hair, wearing a girdle strapped about his loins, whose diet was locust and honey and who made his home in the desert, certainly had not come from one of their schools of thought. Therefore, who is he, what is he up too? This is what the investigating committee from the hierarchy of Jewry had been sent to find out (John 1:19-27). This Judaistic hierarchy realized if they didn’t investigate this thing going on down at the river and do it quickly, they might well find themselves one day sitting in their local synagogue without a congregation. It is from this conversation of these spies who are asking John certain questions that we learn, as he speaks under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, all about verses 11-12 of Matt.3. Who are you? Why do you baptize and why do you preach in such fashion?


JOHN’S ANSWER


To this, John only answered what the prophet Isaiah had prophesied some five centuries before. I am just the voice of one crying in the wilderness, prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight (Isa. 40:3). And when it came to answering their question concerning baptism he merely stated, I indeed baptize you unto repentance but there is one coming after me whose shoelaces (or sandals) I am not worthy to unloose or to pick up and carry (depending on the translation you prefer). Note now as we approach verse 11 John begins to speak under the inspiration, “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance; but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear; he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and fire.” Notice as John comes into verse 12 he is still speaking of the same one who is to do the Holy Ghost baptizing. John, being a prophet looking down through unto the very end of the grace age begins to speak in this manner from verse 12, “Whose FAN is in his hand and he will thoroughly purge his floor. (Every wheat farmer understands that term and they know what this floor is), and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire”. My, have you ever seen such events to transpire in only two verses of scripture! The church age of grace is actually placed in an overall setting from beginning to the end in those few power-packed statements and furthermore, note how especially verse 12 links up with Christ’s teaching in his seven parables in Matt. 13:37-43. Studying the similarity between these verses one will note Christ often likened his true seed word believer to that of precious grain of wheat and how the wheat must be first separated from the tares which are bound in bundles and burned, but the wheat shall be gathered unto the Almighty’s barn (Matt. 13:30). And note how beautifully the language of the Holy Ghost is portrayed once he begins speaking concerning the wheat which is none other than the true believer even as far back as when John the Baptist gives explanation for his ministry before these elected spies sent from the hierarchy of the Jewish religion. It is doubtful these spies had the slightest inkling about what John was speaking; nevertheless, they had an answer they could report to those who had sent them. Verse 11 deals exclusively with the First Advent of Christ where he would first be introduced unto the human race (namely the Jew), Rom. 1:16, and secondly unto all the followers or true believers who were to be the recipients of this baptism with the Holy Ghost, Acts 1:5. Notice, in verses 11-12 John is laying heavy emphasis upon the fact only one person will be doing all these things. John said it would be the one who comes after him.


UNDERSTANDING JOHN’S TERMINOLOGY


It is of necessity we would become acquainted with this very special Holy Ghost terminology used by John as he states, there is someone coming after me (who will do all these different things). It is important we note again what this someone is going to do. He who comes after John will indeed baptize with the Holy Ghost and fire. Now how do you suppose Jesus literally could baptize with the Holy Ghost baptism when the scripture states when the Holy Ghost was given in Acts 2, just ten days prior to that according to Acts 1, Jesus had been bodily taken up in a cloud and was not even present on earth in a corporeal body of flesh when the Holy Ghost was given and yet John stated he would be the very person to do the baptizing! How do you suppose Christ Jesus as a man is actually going to accomplish such a task when he will not even be present? Let us take a closer look at this setting to see how the one to follow John, a corporeal bodied man called Christ, was going to be instrumental in baptizing other corporeal bodied persons with the Holy Ghost and fire!


FREQUENTLY SPEAKS OF HOLY GHOST


We are fully aware as Jesus, the one who followed John, was introduced publicly to the Jewish race (especially John’s followers) throughout the course of his ministry quite frequently he made reference to this which he called the Holy Ghost. Especially during the latter half of his ministry, he began to instruct his disciples how they were to look for the Comforter. Other places they were told they would receive the promise of the Father; again they were instructed they were to receive power from on high. Shortly after his resurrection from the dead, we are reminded in John 20:19-23, on the first day of the week he appeared within a sealed up room where his disciples had assembled for fear of the Jews, showed them his hands and side and said, as my Father has sent me even so send I you and with this he breathed on them saying, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Luke 11:11-12 Father gives Holy Ghost.


LUKE 11:11-13 FATHER GIVES HOLY GHOST


Recall how earlier in his ministry through a certain parable he related how earthly fathers knew how to give good gifts unto their children saying, if a child were to ask his father for bread he would not give him a stone; if he asked for a fish he would not give him a serpent. What is Christ driving at here? What is the point he seeks to make? How is all this going to tie in together with John’s statement of verse 11 and come out with some kind of an understandable meaning? Continuing on in his parable he said, if we being evil know how to give good gifts unto our children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Ghost unto them who ask him? Do we have a contradiction here? Over and over Jesus said the Father would give the Holy Ghost. John under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost said the one coming after me will baptize with the Holy Ghost and fire! Is there a contradiction in the teaching of John and Christ concerning who is to give the Holy Ghost? There is if there are 3 separate persons in the Godhead. Because according to that teaching Jesus is saying the first person who is called God the Father is going to give the Third Person who is called Holy Ghost to the believer while John declares it isn’t that way at all. It is the Second Person who this religious church world calls the son Jesus is going to baptize the believer with the Third Person because in the eye of the religious world he is also a person separate and distinct from the Father and the Son. Now how is Jesus going to baptize with the Holy Ghost when he left the scene in Acts 1. Whether you believe in one or three Gods there is a sensible explanation; nevertheless, to fulfill John’s statements Jesus, the one who followed him, will have to baptize with the Holy Ghost and to fulfill Jesus’ statement the Father who is Spirit will have to send the Holy Ghost. How was this to be accomplished? John being a Jewish prophet probably never heard of the heretical Gentile’s explanation of the Trinity of the three separate persons in the Godhead which wasn’t developed for over 300 years after his death. He only said, the one coming after me will do the baptizing with the Holy Ghost. Actually, he had reference to the Mighty God robed in flesh (1 Tim. 3:16; Isa. 9:6; 2 Cor. 5:19, etc.) However, we poor gentiles who have been taught contrary to the truth would certainly need a revelation from God to grasp that. We realize within 72 hours after the crucifixion of Christ, before corruption would have had time to begin breaking down the cells of his body (Psalm 16:10). Christ was already bearing witness of his resurrection and continued to do so for the space of 40 days before ascending up on high to take his new and rightful position of High Priest (Heb. 7, 8 & 9). These informative chapters prove beyond any doubt Christ was no longer on this earth in corporeal bodied flesh, rather he had been taken to glory to begin serving in a new capacity of High Priest. On earth, he had been prophet and the Lamb sacrifice, in the glory world he is now Mediator and High priest (On earth again he will be King). Yet, John has stated he is going to baptize someone with the Holy Ghost and fire. Now if we were to examine this scripture (verse 11) from the natural carnal standpoint we might feel Christ in his fleshly bodily form must come along at some time in his ministry with some kind of container filled with whatever this Holy Ghost is because recall, at this hour no one knew nor had any idea how to receive whatever this Holy Ghost was, for Jesus had only publicly referred to the Spirit as that of water once when standing before the multitude on the lst day of the great feast saying if any man thirst let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture has said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. Recall no explanation to such a statement was given at that time. No, perhaps no explanation was given until some 60 years later when John recording this incident, John 7:37-39, said-this spake he of the Spirit that they that believe on him should receive. Note, it was John and not Christ who said, this spake he of the Spirit for the Holy Ghost was not yet given for Christ was not yet glorified. That is true, no explanation concerning this Holy Ghost was ever given as to how anyone was going to receive of the Spirit. No, we are not to believe Christ would come along with a little container of some description, full of whatever this Holy Ghost was and say, Boys, open your mouths I am going to give you a drink and then start pouring it into them; nevertheless, no one knew how it would be done. No sir, the language in the final analysis of Matt. 3:11 simply means this-Christ who offered his life on Calvary for the sins of mankind, gave his own life by separating it from his own flesh using it as a ransom price for mankind. Recall, Christ had stated no man takes his life, he laid it down for the sheep (John 10:15) and as that holy sacred blood of God gushed from his open, wounded side it was this blood or life that was given for the remission of sins. Hebrews teaches without the shedding of blood there is no remission (Heb. 9:22). Note carefully, I have denoted for a reason which we shall explain later the word S-I-N from the word S-I-N because as we shall see this is by no means a catchy thing yet I have related it in this manner that you may know there is truly a difference between SIN and SINS and how grace covers it all. However, now we must continue on with the actual ministry of Christ after his ascension into glory to see how he shall fulfill Matt. 3:11.


CHRIST OUR MEDIATOR


Christ died and rose from the dead in a state of immortality never to die again and ascended up on high where he received a position in the Father’s glory to now act as Mediator between the Great Eternal Spirit who is none other than the Great God and you as an individual human being who had fallen from his grace. Paul declares in 1 Tim. 2:5 there is only one Mediator between God and men and that is the man Christ Jesus. Note what this Mediator between God and man is, it is another man. Note what that man is doing. Hebrews fully declares he entered into the Holy of Holies to make certain intercessions for you and I. Now, I ask you a question, if he is there in glory in another office (as a man) busily interceding for you and I in the Holy of Holies acting as High Priest, how does the language apply to him in verse 11 where John declared under such an anointing, that it was he who would baptize with the Holy Ghost and fire? It is most important that we understand how Christ could be in glory officiating in another office and yet baptize believers with the Holy Ghost to fulfill Matt. 3:11 and never be present here in his corporeal flesh because when we come to the next verse, verse 12, we are going to find out this same one who has been baptizing with the Holy Ghost is also standing at the end of the age, now with a FAN in his hand thoroughly purging his (threshing) floor and gathering his wheat into the garner. Note, the man Christ Jesus won’t be here on earth in his fleshly body either in verse 12 yet he and he alone is the one who will be doing all this work according to John the Baptist.

 

 

THE MEANING IS THIS


The meaning is this: The man Christ is in the Holy of Holies in his new office as High priest interceding to the Great Eternal Spirit, the Father-interceding in an office as High Priest just as any of the natural fleshly Jewish high priests would do once each year when they would enter into the Holy of Holies within the temple on the Day of Atonement and pray to the Great Shakinah Glory that the sins of the people standing outside in the outer court would be forgiven. Likewise, has this man Christ, who after the order of Melchisedek now gone into the Holy of Holies as our High Priest to make intercession for that true believer who has fully believed upon him and accepted his crucifixion along with his shed blood as the only atonement for their sins. Therefore, what is Christ our High Priest doing in the Heavenly Holy of Holies? Making intercession and pleading to the Great Eternal Spirit who is none other than the Father that he may give of himself, and note I said GIVE OF HIMSELF not another person-himself whose substance is Spirit-to each believer the gift of life or the Holy Ghost which is none other than the gift of God or Spirit of God to that of our fleshly vessels fulfilling Paul’s statement-we carry this treasure in earthen vessels (II Cor. 4:7). It is important we realize the Great Eternal Spirit, the Father of Glory, is giving a measure of himself to each believer (eliminating some mysterious 3rd person separate from himself). No, beloved, giving of the Spirit is not sending some Third Person who is another separate Spirit from God the Father, who himself is Spirit. That would make Paul’s statement incorrect when he taught the Ephesian Church there was only One Spirit to begin with, Eph. 4:4. See how carnal religious people have been guilty of confusing and twisting the Godhead in an attempt to fit their carnal understanding. Therefore, we see John’s language, though it was spoken in the Holy Ghost, is not to imply there should be one coming after him who at the time of the baptizing of the Holy Ghost and fire would even need be present in any corporeal-bodied flesh with some container pouring someone this drink of the spirit as it might appear to those present in John 7. No sir, it simply means this Christ as High Priest is interceding for every true believer before that Great Eternal Spirit (the Father) to give of himself and not someone else a little portion of himself to each true believer. May I ask, do you have your portion? That portion is God.


HOW GRACE CANCELS BOTH SIN AND SINS


Time has come that we should examine a previous statement made in this article dealing with sin and sins and see, scripturally, how grace cancels both. Entering the room where his frightened disciples were assembled after his resurrection, Christ breathed on them saying, Receive ye the Holy Ghost; whose soever sins you remit they are remitted unto them and whose soever sins ye retain they are retained, (John 20:23). Before, when I spelled out the word S-I-N it was not to trick anyone, only to show the true application in the scripture concerning both sin and sins. Scripture declares without the shedding of blood there is no remission (of sins) Heb. 9:22; Matt. 26:28.


REMISSION ACCOMPANIES SINS (NOT SIN)


Note whenever remission enters into the picture, it is always accompanied by the word “sins” such as in Luke 24:47; Acts 2:38 and Acts 22:16. Furthermore, we note on every occasion in scripture wherever the gospel of Christ was preached bringing in the blood of Christ along with water baptism we always find the apostles differentiating between the two words, SIN and SINS, showing how the grace of God through the blood atonement is applied to the scriptural believer and in what respect. Listen a moment and think me not a heretic, but if the blood of Christ is to atone for the S-I-N-S (note I said sins) of mankind then tell me what was the baptism in water given for which was always spoken of as a baptism for the remission of sins? Here is the answer and yet how often do we hear someone say, there is, nothing to baptism.


CARNAL NATURE NEVER REMOVED BY WATER BAPTISM


Water baptism in no way touches the carnal nature which one carries in his bosom. No sir! Get that straight in your mind! According to the prophet David, the day you were born you were born into this world in sin and shapened in iniquity, which simply means we inherited a fallen, sinful nature and water baptism can in no way touch that sinful nature, only the sinless blood atonement can deal with that sinful nature! Nevertheless, it is true, although we had nothing to do with it, we were born into this world with a very sinful nature and once we reached the hour in life where we could begin to exercise our own choice and will because we were sinners through our natural physical birth we found ourselves beginning to do things in this flesh that are expressed in the teachings of the gospel as being the works or the lusts of the flesh-drinking, smoking, gambling, committing adultery, fornication, lusts, cheating, stealing, lying and all of these other things which could be mentioned are only the fruits of wickedness of unrighteousness. Scripture calls these deeds acts or works of the flesh or lusts of the flesh. They are those sinful fruits or attributes contributed from the operation of a fallen nature; however, until we reach the age or the time in life that the grace of God comes to us and makes us aware of our lost pitiful condition as a sinner, there is not anything within ourself that we can do about this.


CHRIST’S BLOOD ATONES FOR SIN(FUL) NATURE


However, note Christ has made a provision for us whereby we might be rescued out of this terrible situation. How is this to be accomplished seeing we have done all of these things in the flesh. Why did we do them? Because we were born with a sinful nature compelling us to do so. Therefore, when Christ gave his life for us, to redeem us, his life was separated from his flesh whereby the price of redemption might be paid-that innocent one died for the ungodly. As Paul said, when we were yet without strength, Christ died for the ungodly and (then later) God shed his love abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us (Rom. 5:5-6). Christ purchased us with his own life or blood through his death. Now in purchasing us he is not willing that we should remain under bondage to that kind of nature which completely controlled and dominated our lives. Paul further stated if any man be in Christ he is a new creature old things have passed away and behold all things have become new (2 Cor. 5:17). Therefore, as his holy sinless life was given as that purchase price or by the same token you could say it was his holy sinless blood given because Leviticus teaches the life of the flesh is in the blood and without that Spirit which is none other than life itself, the blood of man alone could be no good, for the blood and spirit of life absolutely goes together. Therefore, when his blood was separated from that body of clay, the blood which had been his clay, the blood which had been his very source of life in his flesh is now poured out as an atonement for my sinful nature. In order for me to be able to scripturally accept that and make it applicable to myself, watch what must happen. Recall when Christ entered that Upper Room and said to those disciples, whosoever sins ye remit to him they are remitted and whosoever sins ye retain unto him they are retained, look what the Catholic Church did roughly some 300-500 years later with that very statement. They completely turned it around to make it indicate the pope had power to forgive sins!


REMITTING SINS IS NOT FORGIVING SINS


Jesus never instructed anyone they had power to forgive sins, only that they could remit sins. NOBODY HAS THE POWER TO FORGIVE SINS! Not even one of God’s great prophets could forgive sins. That is not what Christ told his disciples at all, he said WHOSOEVER SINS YOU REMIT THEY ARE REMITTED….

 

 

REMISSION OF SINS — HOW?


Let us find out what it means to remit sins, not S-I-N! Remit means to remove, to blot out, to do away, to cancel and in every case throughout the book of Acts wherever water baptism was used, it was always used with the authority to remit something-was it not? What was it? No, it can never be used to remit S-I-N, sin or unbelief which is inherited by nature-only the blood of Christ could do that!! But it was always to remit S-I-N-S, those things done in the flesh which came from that evil sinful nature. That is why the body is to be washed. Recall again Paul speaking of the time Ananias came to him after his conversion on the Damascus Road and after telling him certain things concerning his ministry said, now why tarriest thou, arise be baptized and wash away thy S-I-N-S, calling on the name of the Lord. BAPTISM WASHES AWAY OR REMITS SINS! Note not wash away sin, but sins, Acts 22:16. Did not Christ teach in the gospel of Luke repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name to all nations beginning at Jerusalem (Luke 24:44-47) and what name did Christ say remission of sins was to be preach in, IN HIS NAME! In his one singular name, the name of the one who stood before them giving the commission; the name of Jesus who is both Lord and Christ. Now turn to Acts 2:38, after the Holy Ghost has been given in Jerusalem (where this preaching of repentance and remission on SINS was to begin) and a sermon is delivered by the Apostle Peter which brought in 3,000 precious souls to answer their question, men and brethren what shall we do (note the question was not directed to Peter alone but unto all the apostles), it was merely Peter who spoke the words of instruction to fulfill Luke 24:44-47, Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ. Why Peter? Why baptize them in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins? How can anyone honestly say after examining the scriptures that Peter made a mistake? Is this not perfectly in line with Christ’s commission to his disciples in Luke 24 given at the same time as when Matthew recorded and said baptize them in the name (singular) of the father, and of the son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. Therefore, we note remission of sins spoken of here in Luke 24:47 is to be applied through what means – WATER BAPTISM.


AUTHORIZED PERSONS TO REMIT SINS


And who is that authorized person with authority to baptize converts and what happens when that authorized party baptizes a believer in water for the remission of sins, fulfilling John 20:23; Luke 24:47; Acts 2:38, etc.


REPENTANCE COMES FIRST


No. 1 -When that authorized person who is none other than that true minister of the Lord Jesus Christ who he has sent to fulfill his commission (Rom. 10:13-15); when that God sent minister (sent- not just went, as so many have) preaches the true revelated gospel and sinners are convicted and convinced that God’s provided way for him to come or to be reconciled back to God through repentance and remission of sins, he first repents. Repentance is saying sorrowfully, Lord, I am a sinner, I can’t help it but I do acknowledge I am a terrible sinner and I have a godly sorrow over that fact; I have done so many evil things, I repent (or I change my mind about all of this). I know I can’t save myself; therefore, I ask you to forgive me of my SINS and change my life. I see now only the grace of God can cover my wrong doings provided I repent. In Jonah 4:2 it referred to God repenting of a certain thing he had intended to do. In other words God changed his mind and did not do to Ninevah what he said he would, seeing all the people there repented; they changed their minds causing God to repent or change his mind therefore he did not destroy their city. Their repentance caused God to repent or change his mind. Thus, we see from scripture that a godly sorrow worketh repentance (II Cor. 7:9-19). By no means is godly sorrow repentance, no, repentance is changing one’s mind and attitude toward something and once that sinner says yes to the Lord Jesus, I truly repent and accept you as my only saviour, then brother, according to the scripture that honest hearted individual who has truly accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as the only substitute or provision for sin (unbelief) then that scripture can now be applied by the God sent minister wherein Jesus said, as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them. Remember, remitting sins in that sense is not forgiving sins, by no means, but it is applied by taking the convert into water saying, I now baptize you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission or the removal or the washing away) of your sins, Acts 2:38; Acts 22:16. That and that alone remits sins. SINS, those evil things are put away and that Great Eternal Spirit is watching over this which the Mediator Christ our High Priest is busy making intercession for in behalf of the atonement at Calvary as that old sinner goes under the water in the name of the Lord Jesus for the remission of sins, scripture teaches us our sins are absolutely washed away from God’s sight.


SINNERS OLD NATURE ATONED FOR BY BLOOD


Watch what happens to the sinner’s old nature-the Great Eternal Spirit is now applying the blood. Yes, the blood is now applied to the nature of the person in Christ for whom Christ our High Priest is interceding. It was from a fallen nature the fruits of this nature had produced all these sins or works of the flesh (Gal. 5:19-21). Therefore, when the effects of the blood begins to take place or as the effects of the blood begins to be applied to that inner nature which has been so far from God, that Great Eternal Spirit who has been watching over that heart now sees the sinner has truly repented and has been baptized for the remission of his sins according to the scriptures, washing away the filth of the flesh etc., it is now the Great Spirit who was in Christ (2 Cor. 5:19) reconciling us back to himself while Christ walked on earth who now permits the effects of the blood of Christ to be applied to that human nature which was inherited from the fall in the garden and because the blood is applied by faith (or revelation) the Great Eternal Spirit now gives to that believer a measure or portion of himself which is none other than the gift of the Holy Ghost, (Act 2:38) fulfilling John’s statement in Matt. 3:11. The Holy Ghost comes in which we must possess to have eternal life and fulfill Rom. 8:11 which says without the Spirit of Christ we are none of his. Furthermore, he is the promise of the Father, John 14:16-17 and Luke 24:49. He is the comforter, John 14:26; he is that Spirit of Truth of whom Christ spoke which would guide us into all truth, John 16:7-13. Yes, this is the Holy Ghost of Matt. 3:11 of whom John spoke, who is to be given to the true believer by the person who should follow his (John’s) ministry. Therefore, we can see how God as Eternal Spirit was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself and although Christ not being here in corporeal flesh ministered this gift of the Spirit while at the same time was in that Mediatorial office in glory interceding for the believer. Not a work of three Gods nor three separate persons but THE WORK OF ONE GREAT GOD IN THREE OFFICES OR MANIFESTATIONS.


CHRIST OUR HIGH PRIEST


We are aware Christ (in person) was not here as the Holy Ghost was given on the Day of Pentecost, some 50 days after his resurrection and 10 days after his ascension to take up his new office of High Priest. Just think of the multitude of thousands down through the centuries of time who accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal saviour and received his benefits from above. Not receiving because someone was standing on the earth with a container doing this work. NO! But because someone far above in glory serving as High Priest after the order of Melchisedek interceding for the believer in behalf of the atonement to be applied to the sinner who walked in obedience to the light of the gospel (II Cor. 4:3-6) whereby that person would receive from above that portion of the Holy Spirit which is none other than the Spirit of God in the believer’s life. Bro. Jackson, just what are you driving at someone may ask. The purpose in showing you this in this manner is to let you see for over 1900 years we Gentiles have received the benefits of God according to this one promise of Matt. 3:11 and have by no means been privileged to know Christ after the flesh. On the contrary, we have only been privileged to know him in his office work as Mediator and High Priest as he has honored the gospel which has been preached and as we, by faith, have accepted it, then as Mediator and High Priest interceded to the Eternal Spirit who in turn applies the benefits of the gospel of Christ to the true believer.


READY TO RECEIVE A NEW OPERATION


It was during his first advent all this was set in motion, that man could receive the Spirit and after some 1900 years we are still continuing to receive of those benefits and blessings promised in Matt. 3:11. However, now we are ready to witness another operation, a new operation of this same Spirit found in Verse 12. Christ won’t be here in his corporeal flesh to minister this new operation either. Nevertheless, it shall truly be administered through the same agency as was verse 11. The office work of the Holy Ghost still remains to be that Spirit of God called Father revealed to have been in Christ reconciling the world back unto himself, 2 Cor. 5:19. Therefore, when John said, he who cometh after me, he had no second person in mind, did he? No, it is wrong to think of God as one Spirit, the Son as still another separate and distinct Spirit and then to suppose the blessed Holy Ghost makes up the third separate Spirit, not at all! It has been all the work of the one and selfsame Spirit called God of whom Paul stated in Eph. 4:4 was only one Spirit.


SPIRITUAL MINDED KNOWS GOD’S PROGRAM


If we can see how Christ was not here as man in corporeal flesh at the time of the fulfillment to each believer of Matt. 3:11, then beloved we will be better able to understand how he will be the same one who shall minister the operation of THE FAN on his threshing floor and still not leave the mercy seat or his office as Mediator and High Priest. For when Christ ministers THE FAN on the threshing floor, he will no more be here in his corporeal flesh than he was when he administered the Holy Ghost to the believers. Therefore, we must be spiritual minded enough to be able to identify the operation of this FAN in verse 12 used on his floor when he thoroughly purges it and gathers the wheat into his garner and burns the chaff with unquenchable fire or we shall miss this operation looking for something else.


EXAMINING VERSE 11 FROM CARNAL STANDPOINT


Imagine these first disciples (Acts 2) who were first to receive of these benefits of verse 11 also Luke 3:16-17 and Mark 1:8 had been told to go to Jerusalem and wait for the promise of the Father, without any instruction whatsoever or even know what to look for. Suppose they had gone looking at everything strictly from a natural standpoint like so many poor denominational people would have done. All they knew was that they would be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. And suppose they would have been sitting around in that Upper room, not having been told what to look for, when suddenly they heard the sound as a rushing, mighty wind blowing in a completely sealed room and licks of fire began to appear all over the room when they had not been told to expect anything in this fashion. Oh, I am so glad they had enough common sense or spiritually to recognize what was taking place when it began to happen or perhaps they would have gotten up and ran out the door saying, I think I will wait for this Holy Ghost somewhere else in Jerusalem, this place is getting spookier by the minute! Imagine what would have happened had they had no more spiritual understanding than a group of carnal minded denominational believers who had met in a prayer meeting and something like that happened, no doubt they would have run over each other to get out and go home. That is, providing they had no more instruction about the Holy Ghost than did these disciples. I am so glad there was something that registered in their soul when they heard a man preach the gospel and thank God they had received the correct interpretation because the scripture says they were all in one accord in the upper room. No, they weren’t sitting around arguing and fussing with one saying he didn’t say it that way, while another said no, you are wrong, he said it this way. No beloved, the message they had heard, they all heard it the same way. Isn’t it such a pity we can’t all hear our message in the same way.


HOLY GHOST UNDERSTANDING NEEDED


I will show you from the Bible why we can’t all hear it the same way. It is really very simple. We haven’t all received the Spirit of Truth or the Holy Ghost. That is correct. I said we have not all received the Holy Ghost. Beloved, that is the one thing we don’t want to leave the world without and it is for certain we don’t want to try to be in the Bride of Christ without the Holy Ghost. Read Matt. 25:1-13 and there you will quickly see only they who were ready (or who had the oil) went into the marriage with the Lord while the foolish virgins who had no oil were left outside. Oil is represented by the Holy Ghost who will give you spiritual understanding. Without spiritual understanding, we will never know what God is doing.


HOLY GHOST GUIDES INTO ALL TRUTH


If we all had the Holy Ghost, we would have the correct understanding and be able to all see it alike. We would have to because the Holy Ghost is the spirit of Truth and never tells one person one thing and another just the opposite. To do that he would not be the SPIRIT OF TRUTH, BUT THE SPIRIT OF ERROR and John said we as believers recognize the Spirit of Truth from the spirit of error. When you begin to see people going six different ways with a hundred separate ideas you can be sure of one thing, somewhere that person does not have the Holy Ghost or if by chance he would possibly have the Holy Ghost, he most certainly is not allowing the Spirit to operate in his life. Again I say, the Holy Ghost cannot operate that way, THE HOLY GHOST IS THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH AND WAS GIVEN TO GUIDE YOU INTO ALL TRUTH. (John 16:13). Oh, isn’t it marvelous how this prophet of God, John, clothed in the spirit of Elijah, although the world could only see him clothed in camel hair and girdle about his loins, could look down through the scope of time through the Spirit, down through over 1900 years of church history and see how God’s plan of salvation would operate and consummate. For note in verse 12 as he approaches near the time for the Second Advent of Christ, he shows how the one who would do the Holy Ghost baptizing through the ages would be standing somewhere at a much later hour with a fan in his hand, did he not? According to John’s Holy Ghost language, the fan is in his hand then are we to expect this one who came after him to be standing on this earth in his corporeal flesh, going around the countryside fanning every believer? NOT AT ALL. We must look upon verse 12 in this light as it points to that rapid soon appearing of Christ as he closes out the Grace Age, wrapping it up in its full effects, bringing it to its consummation and moreover to truly see the operation of the fan we can only do so now as we see his aim and purpose of Grace reaching forth to that true believer of this hour as he is ready to receive unto himself his finished harvest of wheat taken from his Grace Age. Therefore, as we recognize how Christ was nowhere in corporeal flesh upon this earth at any time during his baptizing with the Holy Ghost, we can better understand how that FAN can be in operation in his hand to be administered to the wheat or true believer, Matt. 13:30 and him not be present. John says, whose FAN is in his hand and did you note what he is going to do with that FAN? He is going to thoroughly purge his (wheat or threshing) floor of everything that should be removed. Those things not referred to as wheat but chaff, those little particles and bits which appear only in the final period of threshing and separation of wheat from the grain itself, how can this possibly apply to the endtime Grace Age? Where in the end of Grace does it fit in God’s program? Farmers have no trouble understanding this kind of language. It, as so many other places, deals in the life of a farmer with his planting and gathering of crops. Because I am a farmer at heart, I am going to use this as an illustration to show you in God’s program where this fan is placed, how it is administered and how and where to look for it in its operation. Since Christ is in glory as Mediator and High Priest interceding for each believer to be given a portion of the Spirit, let us look and see how Christ with a FAN in his hand is going to administer this different operation of the Spirit and what is going to happen once the operation is completed. How will it affect a people living in that hour of church history?


RAIN ON THE WORD SEED UNTIL HARVEST


We realize down through the centuries of time the church which was set in motion or planted as a seed (of wheat) on the Day of Pentecost once the Holy Ghost was being poured out has traveled into our hour and brought with it a prophet and a restoring message.


BELIEVER LIKENED TO GRAIN OF WHEAT


From that early period until now, as the Holy Ghost was given in each of the seven church ages (Rev. 2 & 3) he was allowed to work and operate in respect to whatever portion of truth was present (restored) within that hour, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit or the moving of the Holy Spirit throughout these respective periods of church history is likened unto rain upon the Word (seed) which was planted in the believer’s heart as he would accept the present Truth. The Holy Ghost watered that Truth in the believer’s heart and life and he would receive that portion of the Spirit which went (along) with that portion of revelation given during that hour. Yet, we are fully aware as I have stated in their messages using Mark 4:26-39 along with James 4:7-8 how the Holy Ghost does not spend all of his time just watering the seed. No, there comes a time according to the scripture when there must be a harvest. Therefore, one of these days the crop must be completed. The last grain of wheat is going to be brought to maturity; the last sinner will hear his gospel call and the Father is going to have given of himself or of his Spirit (Holy Ghost) to that last person for whom the Mediator has been interceding. Whenever that last soul has heard his gospel call and received his portion of the Spirit to which he is entitled before the intercessory work of the High Priest is completed and Christ leaves the mercy seat, then beloved just like a wheat farmer who would look over his wheat field and see those beautiful golden, ripened grains of wheat humbly hanging on a dried up dead stalk rustling in the wind, would touch the head and be able to determine from the feel of those little husks, now hard, dry and brittle (note it is the hardness or solidness of the grain) says within himself it is time to thresh it out. Likewise, the Almighty also says it is time his crop which has been brought to maturity should also be threshed out of the field (or world) Matt. 13:38.


HARVESTING IN CHRIST’S DAY


In the day of Jesus and John the Baptist, people knew nothing about the modern day combine, yet both John and Christ refers to the end of the age as to the harvesting time of the wheat, did they not? However, their reference to gathering grain, especially the wheat, was by no means with modern day instruments. Instead scripture refers to the use of the sickle in the gathering of any kind of harvest. See Rev. 14. The sickle was the instrument used in the days of the scripture. Therefore, as we examine the end of this age, it must be examined in the light of what has happened which has affected gentile religion, the coming of a messenger of the age, etc. We realize in comparison with the wheat stalk which on the church stalk is represented by 20th Century Pentecost while the blades upon the stalk represented the various Protestant denominations. However, as every farmer knows it is in the head of the wheat shortly before harvest season all the little husks are formed and you recall the husk does so much resemble the real wheat, although it is not the real wheat. It only bears a resemblance to the real wheat. That is what 20th Century Pentecost represented on the church stalk, for neither did 20th Century Pentecost fully resemble the early Christian of apostolic days who was that original wheat planted in the ground to produce that crop after passing through various stages as shown by Christ in illustrating a stalk of what showing the route of the natural wheat grain from seed sowing time until harvest time. It goes through many stages. (For a more thorough explanation of this, see our message THE LATTER RAIN, as here we only use this to show where the FAN operation is placed at the end of the age in that which affects the wheat). Our primary interest in the wheat stalk and the church stalk in this message is only with the head, that stage of the process shortly before harvest. The husk in their initial setting does resemble the true wheat, however, as any farmer knows that stalk will not produce one single grain of wheat until first the thing has bloomed.


MALE LIFE EXPRESSES ITSELF


Recall from previous messages how plant life such as a stalk of wheat carries both male and female life within it. The operation of the male life within that stalk when it expresses itself in the head is called pollination and once that bloom expresses itself by coming forth to the outside, that means within the stalk itself something is taking place. It is the law of life and reproduction within plant life itself. As the male and female life are brought together, the bloom appears and those little fibers within the husk begin to take on the effects of those inner nodules which at first are so tiny they can hardly be seen with the naked eye. Directly after the germination process begins to feed into that head, there is a message sent up and down that stalk. The male life within the stalk has spoken. After this process, comes the final step of the wheat before harvest. Beloved, how does such an operation line up with that of the church stalk? That is why within the church stalk which had already passed through many processes in its growth going toward the harvesting of wheat crop that there had to come at the end of this Grace Age a church age messenger, who unlike the other messengers before him connected with the other ages, would absolutely manifest Jesus Christ of the Bible (the male life of the church stalk) in such a way that in behalf of the gentile church the operation of Mal. 4:5-6 (B-part) would be fulfilled wherein that spirit of Elijah (not the mortal Elijah) as John the Baptist illustrates, this spirit would bring a people back to the Word of original Truth once that message of life would be expressed or had spoken to the church age at large or the church stalk as Christ pictured in a number of places. This message at the endtime brought and received by a living generation throughout the world was that pollination or germination period within the church stalk which would carry the same effect upon denomination Christianity as did that bloom carry upon the natural stalk of wheat. As the results of that bloom begins to vibrate and portray its message up and down that stalk something drastic happens. Death sets in and it is important we note death does not first strike the top of the stalk. It begins at the bottom and works up through the blades leaving the husk for the very last thing on the stalk to die.


DEATH STRIKES CHURCH STALK


Likewise, is it true on the church stalk of which Christ spoke? Looking at the church in its progress and growth through the eyes of Christ, one must go to the wheat field and learn a lesson through the various stages of the wheat as it is on its route to reproduce itself. While the husk is now in a process of dying which is represented by the works of modern day Pentecost, the little kernels of wheat are getting larger and fatter. WHY? Because they are growing and taking up all the stored up plant food which has been in the blades, stalk, etc. As the stalk and blade begins to loose their green chlorophyll lifelike color which is being transferred to the wheat, it leaves everything behind on the stalk dead. I know we don’t want to think along these lines that spiritual death has struck the church stalk after the pollination message or blooming process of the messenger has gone forth within the head of the church stalk, but we must, else why would Christ liken his church to that of the life and growth and harvest of wheat. Death hits that stalk after its pollination season. It is the only time in the history of the stalk the male life speaks in such a manner. Beloved, that is why this endtime message is a calling out message for the people to come out according to Rev. 18:4 whereby they be not a partaker of her sins nor of her plagues when death hits (reference to that old denominational church stalk which has now experienced death). Think of it, at harvest everything on the stalk is dead except the wheat. Therefore beloved, if we are able to see how Christ through the office work of the Holy Ghost was working in this messengers life, working through this little vessel of clay during the endtime in taking every bit of God’s truth that had been restored during the Reformation and watch what he is doing with it, placing it right back in the Bible pattern where it belongs, where it was in the first place. In order that we as an endtime people could be a people who once again after so long a time could live on the revelation of what this Bible is talking about and it could have the effect on our lives as it did during the early church when the wheat was being planted in the ground to later bring forth a harvest of the same identical kind of substance planted in the planting season, why can’t we end up with this? Such a faith of revelation started it all. It was men in the early church who wrote it, why can’t we preach it especially after seeing it was the office of Mal. 4:5-6 which restored it to us and called us back to that same revelation of this book. Certainly by no means was his office to take us out of this book. If that has happened to you, then all I can say is the coming of that office to the gentile church spoken of in Mal. 4:5-6 B-Part did not return you to the faith of the fathers, yet I declare unto you that is just what this office was suppose to do-return us back to something allowing our hearts to receive what this Bible has to say and receive it with the correct understanding. Henceforth, we can see wherever this endtime message has been presented as it has been expressed unto the age, the Holy Ghost takes its revelated truth and applies it to hearts throughout the earth and the effects of it reaches out to mankind who is bound in every rank of organized religion, that is provided the individual bound in such is one of those blessed individuals counted worthy to receive the benefits from this glorious truth. This we know, according to scripture everyone ordained to this glory shall come to it (Acts 13:48) makes no difference whether they be in the farthest dark corner of Africa somehow they will come to it and as this church stalk of religion which at one time was the carrier of the real life of truth completely gives itself over to this ecumenical spirit, the denominational structure will be seen more and more to be full of death. It is not I who said this, it is the Almighty God himself who declares the stalk is now dead. It is not man, but God himself who is the husbandman of the field the one who does the watering, it is he who controls the law of life and death who makes this statement.


SPIRIT RAIN ON WHEAT


Therefore, we can see how the Lord through the various stages has been making intercession and the Holy Ghost rain has been poured out upon his wheat crop to keep it growing and becoming more vigorous and greener as that Holy Ghost rain traveled up through these various stages of the church stalk, until it now reached the place where the Spirit causes it to bloom or pollinate by a message being sent forth in these last days, and death immediately hits the church stalk sending itself up and down the stalk as the ecumenical spirit moves in to bind in bundles the tares. Nevertheless, the message continues to fall until maturity and final fruition of the grain is reached.


THE THRESHING FLOOR


What is the next step? As every farmer knows, it is now time to bring the wheat crop to the threshing floor. As the presentation would be, it is still shown as in ancient times, once a crop had become ripened, men are sent forth with sickles into the field to reap the grain and as it is dropped to the ground, the women follow and tie that which has been cut into little bundles. Next, the process is to load the bundles upon donkeys, ox carts, etc., and carry it to a nice cleared area not far away which is chosen to serve as the threshing floor where the great process of the separation of the wheat from everything must now begin. Yes, somewhere near by the field of harvest a place was always chosen. A fairly level area of ground, free from rocks etc., whereby the wheat might be brought in and stacked upon the floor of this area. The place in that day was called the threshing floor, for it was here the threshing and beating to separate the grain from everything would take place. Once all the grain had been harvested from the fields, the next step was to stack it here by placing so much on the floor and as it was placed on the floor some individuals would get up on the bundles and begin jumping up and down, pressing heavily with their feet while others would ride around on horseback or some other animal. The object was to place all this under such pressure it would cause the loosening and separation of the grain from the husk, etc. As they continued adding pressure, up and down upon the grain, finally the farmer would see the grain was all trampled out and next he would bring in a process of pitchforking.


MOVING THE STRAW


However, in those days they did not have pitchforks, they used forked sticks. Those same laborers who had been instrumental in reaping the wheat from the field, now take the forked sticks and begin tossing all the straw and larger objects off the floor where the grain lay and you know even with forked sticks, though they might be crude instruments, you could surely move a lot of straw. They would pitch straw until all the straw had been taken off the threshing floor. Religiously speaking, pitching the straw from the threshing floor as you note was by the same reapers who brought the wheat in upon the floor in mass quantity. According to the church age messenger of Laodicea who stated a number of years ago and it certainly seems to be proving out to be very true, that men with such ministries and various programs are being used today for this operation as Graham, Roberts and men of this caliber.


MOVING DENOMINATION STRAW


What is this operation? It is handling dead straw, dead straw to be bound by the spirit of ecumenicalism and sent to the furnace of judgment. Yes, it is men of this caliber who have programs large enough to handle and influence and pull away from the true revelation of the Word all of this dead denominational ecumenical straw. Imagine you trying to go out there with some little fork (or program) trying to get rid of all that straw. Nevertheless, in olden days, they used these crude instruments for moving the straw, but it was sufficient to handle the job because you must remember the straw is to be moved off the floor along with every object which would not be too small to be touched by the pitchfork operation.


THE FAN


Now we are ready for the operation of the fan which was in his hand wherein John said, he will thoroughly purge his wheat floor; purge it now of everything the other operations had failed to effect and move. What naturally will be done with the straw, it will be burned of course. After having cleared away the straw from off the threshing floor, what does that now leave? It leaves the wheat along with the husk, along with the little particles and giblets of crushed, mangled straw and particles of dust and whatever else you might have which could by no means be affected with the pitchfork operation or ministry. Yes, only that is left on the floor which was too small or shall we say, that could not be affected by those men or reapers as the straw was being tossed from the floor. Recall, all the husbandman or (the Lord) is interested in is bringing in the wheat crop, that wheat which now lies upon the threshing floor. What is the threshing floor in the spiritual sense in relation to the wheat? It is none other than the WORD OF GOD! Was it not the Word of God the wheat along with the husk and other things had been brought to by this endtime messenger? This messenger brought us out of the field or out of the world (Matt. 13:38) onto the threshing floor, THE WORD OF GOD! The Word of God was the revelation which was brought to the age by the messenger which was the very thing to bring all of us out of the field or world onto the threshing floor relationship with God the husbandman. It was with the interpretation and the revelation of this message brought through this prophet’s ministry which went out and brought you and I back to the revealed word in the Bible whereby my salvation experience which I had personally received in Methodism would no longer be the testimony of a Methodist, on the contrary it would have to become now the testimony of a truly born again Christian, baptized with the Holy Ghost according to the Word of God and not according to some manmade tradition or creed or some church denominational teaching. That is what this message is responsible for. The moment that true revelated message began to be lifted up, that message in which these great denominational evangelists could have embraced but only strayed further from seeing their idea of the gospel is to take some little verse of scripture and turn it into a big religious program which spiritually is nothing more than the process of the reapers pitching dead denominational straw from off the threshing floor or off the Word of God.


BLOWING WINDS


In ancient times to fulfill the next process which takes place still upon the threshing floor as much as possible, men would always try to pick a favorable time whereby the natural winds might assist them for their next process or final step which is none other than the final separation of all particles or foreign matter from the pure wheat. Usually, they made quite an event of this having a feast etc. The young ladies with flat pans or thin hollowed out bowls similar to those of old pioneer mother’s dough bowls would begin a process now with the actual wheat itself which is referred to as winnowing. Here they would enter in upon the threshing floor, usually accompanied by musicians while the older women prepared the meal in the background. These young ladies would get into the threshing floor and scoop up portions of wheat in their bowls and dance around the outer circle to the tune of the music played, flipping the wheat into the air. They were well experienced in this operation and as the wheat was flipped into the air they continued to keep their bowls underneath the wheat, which always fell down into the containers. Yet, the lighter objects such as the husk, bits of crushed wheat stalk and the foreign matter too small to be affected for the pitchfork operation were taken away by the blowing wind, far from the threshing floor. Continuing to dance around the outer circle the girls would sing, flipping the wheat into the air until they saw the winds had blown away everything but the wheat. They would usually proceed to a special place, dump their tray of pure wheat which had stood the test upon the threshing floor, back upon the floor they would come and scoop up another bowl full of wheat, husk, giblets of straw, etc., and around through the same flipping process they would go again as the winds separated the wheat from all foreign matter. However, if there were no favorable winds blowing at this particular time of winnowing the wheat, the farmer would usually make a fan out of any type of crude material such as straw or whatever was available which could be woven together into a large enough object to create an artificial wind to serve the same purpose in blowing the lighter material away from the wheat.


NOT BLOWN BY EVERY WIND – EPH. 4:14


After the fans had been made from whatever available material almost anything could be used to create a wind, certain ones would get in upon the threshing floor and take up their position with bowls of wheat and other substance while others with the fans would move in behind them. The purpose as already stated with the fan is to create an artificial wind to blow away the lighter material such as the chaff out of the wheat. Oh, how that reminds us of Paul’s statement to the Ephesians where he stated the purpose of the fivefold ministry which is in the Lord’s hands, was given for the perfecting of the saints and the work of the ministry and for the edifying of the body of Christ until we had all come into the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ (the stature of a perfect man is found in 2 Peter 1:5-10). Verse 14 of Ephesians says we henceforth be no more children tossed to and fro and carried away with every wind of doctrine by the sleight of men and cunning craftiness wherein they lie in wait to deceive. The point I want you to note here is Paul says the fivefold ministry causes us to grow up to a full stature of the perfect man, Christ, that is we become heavy enough spiritually speaking in God’s profound truth that we won’t be blown about by every wind of doctrine. Note please these winds of doctrines are not scriptural and are by no means founded upon the Word. Nevertheless, they serve perfectly to blow us away from the threshing floor to which we have been brought by this endtime revelation designed to restore man back to the Word (Mal. 4:5-6, B-part). The operation of the artificial winds are designed to carry away every particle light enough to be affected. The husbandman has no concern of which way the husk, chaff, bits of straw or the lighter material goes as they are picked up and taken away by these artificial winds. His concern is only with one thing; to get all these dead particles off the floor and separated from his wheat. Wheat will be the final thing on the floor, because after all it was wheat he planted in the beginning and that is all he is interested in harvesting. As the scripture says (Matt. 3:12) he will thoroughly purge his floor with the FAN in his hand which means he will leave nothing undone or unturned but shall separate everything from the pure wheat. Beloved, this endtime message is the only thing which has life in it today. Everything else carries death and besides that is taking souls back to the world and finally into the ecumenical move.


DENOMINATIONAL STRAW


Another word about the straw. Note in the old process used for thousands of years, the straw was brought out of the field onto the threshing floor, trampled on and thrown back into the field to be burned, think of it. In the spiritual sense, it was the denominational straw taken from the field along with the pure grain, brought to God’s threshing floor, his precious revelated Word, trampled upon and because they could not agree with the Word itself, was thrown back into the world to be burned as the ecumenical spirit engulfs them, takes over and binds them together. What has this operation been all about? Just as on the natural wheat stalk to which Christ so often referred in illustrating his church, the purpose is for no other reason than to get the wheat. Look at it from the spiritual standpoint. This message has called multitudes out of denominations. As people, they are as good as anyone else; nevertheless, goodness alone will never measure up unless that goodness is coupled with the proper motive, proper attitude and revelation which places one’s heart in tune with God’s Word in such a manner it is fully accepted unto our God. Beloved, goodness alone is not enough, or goodness without these other qualities will certainly present a problem once we are placed on that threshing floor of his Word to have all of our ideas threshed out whereby we may be pure wheat for his garner. We will only find ourselves arguing, disputing and fighting God and as Peter said, the unlearned and unstable wrestle with those scriptures (especially of the Apostle Paul) to their own destruction. Beware lest ye also being led away with the error of the wicked fall from your own steadfastness (2 Pet. 3:16-17). Goodness is only an attribute of one’s human nature and cannot measure up unless the heart is in tune with God’s Word with the proper motive of attitude and outlook whereby we may truly walk in fellowship with the Spirit of God which is suppose to be in our lives.


MOCKERY OR REALITY


If I don’t have the true Spirit of God in my life, I am only going through an act; I’m only imitating something which is suppose to be real and in the final analysis I am the only one which will be mocked. Gal. 6:7 tells us God is not mocked. You can’t imitate a Christian life, either you are a Christian or you aren’t. God is not mocked for whatsoever a man sows that he shall also reap. If you imitate a christian’s life you are imitating a person who is suppose to be in this message and recall, it was this message that brought us (the wheat) to the threshing floor. However, if we aren’t in the true revelated message but only have the letter of words and statements it will show up in our nature once we are placed on that threshing floor of His Word. Only by a spiritual birth, combined with an absolute true revelation of the message could you possibly hope to be placed in this message. Other than that, you are only going through an act of mockery. It is only imitation and in the end it will only lead you to death and not spiritual life, because as you lay on that threshing floor and the Holy Spirit is tossing you about on that Word if you can’t fully agree with God’s Word, somewhere along the way while being tossed about on the revelation, a strong wind of false doctrine from a seducing spirit will come your way and blow you completely off the foundation of the threshing floor. Sure, in one’s carnal understanding, they will be positive they are right as they chase after one of these unscriptural teachings, however, it will probably be too late once we find out that we were led astray from the Word by some seducing spirit who seized the opportunity through your unwillingness to fall in line with the Word of God.


NO BELIEVER ESCAPES FAN


We are now dealing with the portion of John’s inspirational statement where he stated “the FAN was in his hand”. Beloved, no believer in this hour escapes the operation of the FAN. Therefore, I want you to know where God placed that FAN, what it is going to do and how it will greatly affect your life before this day is over. As wheat (chaff or whatever you may be, spiritually speaking) there is no escape of the FAN which will blow against the wheat already placed on the threshing floor of the Word. True, a message was brought and it brought a people who were looked upon as wheat to the threshing floor. Listen to me carefully, that revelated message was the revelation of God’s written Word. That revelated message was to point man back into the Word (that threshing floor) in order that our lives might measure up to it and perhaps if called upon, to die by it.


FAN PLACED IN MESSAGE


Now I desire to say something I sincerely pray you will try to catch my thought. This revealed message, this pollination message (to the church stalk), delivered to us in this hour is not the word of man, it is the revelation of God’s Word unto his church; therefore, the age will be judged by it and furthermore it could not have been delivered until God so willed it to be anymore than you could demand a stalk of wheat to bloom or pollinate before its ordained hour. Try it sometime. Walk into a wheat field and demand the stalk turn yellow (with death). It can’t be done. Why? Because the law of life is within the wheat stalk itself and can no more act until the Creator has established its season whereby it can act and that operation is built into the stalk. I hope you can see how this applied with in the spiritual stalk also. Because, likewise, is it so with this revelated pollinating message which reached out to pull through the church stalk those in much the same token. Nevertheless, as certain world religious conditions along with pressures which are laced upon individuals lives later developed, they who were affected by this message too often are caught up in the teachings of other men which causes these unsettled people to be found arguing with the Word of true revelation. Then look what happens; they wind up tossed back off the Word by some strong wind of manmade doctrine. Yes, while these unsettled people are continually tossed up and down (in their minds) concerning the revelation of the Word of God (that spiritual threshing floor) a fierce wind which creates a blowing or fanning effect comes along and finally blows them completely off-a wind of some wild revelation without any biblical support which was suppose to have stemmed from this message. After following this kind of spirit, these poor souls are no longer following a true Biblical revelation. Instead, they are either following some human personality, some relative’s influence or merely the crowd of people. Nevertheless, it all combined has served as the necessary wind to blow you completely off the Word of God. Beloved, when will we learn we can’t walk with God in such a manner. Now this endtime message of revelated truth delivered to us by a prophet, church age messenger has brought us onto the threshing floor of God’s Word. Countless numbers of people of every walk of religious life have in some way been influenced as God has mercifully dealt with mankind and furthermore has dealt spiritually in applying the effects of the threshing floor relationship to each individual affected by this message whereby in the end you may know and recognize God has truly FANNED it with a FAN. I am now going to show you what this fan is in its true relation to this endtime church program of God where the final work is being done on the wheat (believer). It is very important we note the FAN does not in any way affect the denominational straw. By no means could you take a fan and pile up or throw away the denominational straw that came through the pitchfork operation; therefore, this proves there had to be some other type ministry to handle all this (dead denominational) straw. Certainly it was not the ministry of the FAN. The FAN is not constructed to disturb the religious denominational structure at large represented by the dead straw. Yet within the floor where the true seed Word believer is God intends to keep his true seed believer represented as wheat right on his Word regardless to how they may be tossed by winds. The true developed wheat each time will fall right back on the floor and not be carried away by the artificial winds created by the FAN and remember THE FAN IS PLACED WITHIN THIS MESSAGE. Note the FAN operation did not move while the wheat remained in the field, nor was it used in moving the straw. The FAN operation moves strictly against that which remains on the threshing floor after all the straw has been removed. Now the FAN was in his hand and he will thoroughly purge his floor (with that FAN and yet Christ is no more here in a corporeal body of flesh during the FAN operation than was he here throughout the ages ministering Holy Ghost baptism to the believer. Neither was Christ here bodily as the message was delivered through the prophet office of Mal. 4:5-6; Rev. 10:7, however, it is true he was here mightily in Spirit form as the Holy Ghost worked through that little redeemed human vessel of clay who was none other than a sinner saved by the grace of God. Despite his many warnings against people who tried to make something of his flesh there are still those who would persist in promoting this prophet was God himself. That is as far from the truth as you can get. The messenger himself taught he was only a redeemed sinner fulfilling a prophet’s office. To make him anything above a man who was the prophet messenger to this age to whom the Word of the Lord came on behalf of a people at the end of this age, is to make yourself a first class idolater from the top of your head to the bottom of your feet and not I but the Apostle Paul places you (if you fall under that kind of spirit) in the same category as that of fornicators, extortioners, covetous, railer, drunkards and furthermore declares for no one to even eat or fellowship with you. Now that is Strong. Therefore, to be in line with the Word of God, I cannot consciously fellowship with an idolater, I. Cor. 5:7-11. Oh, but someone will say, did not the scripture call them gods to whom the word of the Lord came? It most certainly did and notice how the word god is spelled. It is with a small g and don’t ever forget it. Be sure to keep it in the minor.


PROPHETS CALLED (g)ods


However, I want you to know that the God (capital G) of heaven I am referring to is always spelled with a capital G. This God is Spirit and fills all the universe. His Spirit is everywhere and can never die, so large and yet can become so small. Yet, regardless to how small he may become he is still to be capital G-O-D in the major. He who fills the universe and slung the stars in space and placed the world out of nothing, yet was small enough to get inside that little vessel of clay who was his prophet to this age and could conceal himself and show himself to be God as he used this little humble vessel of clay. Therefore, does that make the vessel of clay God because it was used of God? It absolutely does not. There has never been but one man who ever walked the path of this earth who was God in the flesh and he was none other than the Lord Jesus Christ, born of a virgin and not through any natural conception as was this human race including this gentile prophet. Col. declares that he who was born of the virgin birth, the Lord of glory was the fulness of the Godhead in bodily form. He was the Messiah, the anointed one of whom John the Baptist declared he was not even worthy to loosen his sandals. The prophet to this age felt the same. Throughout the ages since that time, all men have been declared sinners and saved by the grace of God and filled with a portion of that great eternal Spirit in order to manifest the Jesus Christ to the scripture who rose from the dead, ascended on high and interceded as a High Priest that the Holy Ghost might be given to you in order that you might have the Spirit of Christ (the revealed Word in you which was your hope of Glory) (Col. 1:27).

 

 

BACK TO THE FAN


Recall, we are looking at this fan in his hand. God sent this message to the age to call out a people and bring them to the word or the threshing floor in order to purify, perfect and bind together an endtime believing people, who could once again be in that same kind of agreement and accord and have that same kind of understanding as did the early church, based of course on what the apostles taught. Furthermore, God knew in this hour as a people was restored back to that same Word of revelation it would be an hour of time the fan in his hand would go into operation and God realized in the same generation of time the fan was to operate there would be a people who at the end of the grace age would want to take that vessel of clay of the prophet’s in which God had magnificently used to work through in order to accomplish this work some of those people would fall into an idolatrous spirit as they would desire to take and exalt the flesh of this man to be very God. Beloved, it is right here in this very message of life that we first begin to see the fan go into operation because if Christ was not here in his flesh to baptize with the Holy Ghost nor was he here to haul the wheat from the field (world), he is not here personally or fleshly to apply the fan upon the threshing floor. Therefore, we must treat the fan in the same manner as we have his other operations seeing he has not been bodily present. You are the people this fan will work on; therefore, it is time to show you how to identify the fan in his hand.


SOMETIME ARTIFICIAL FAN REQUIRED


Recall a fan was made when the winds were not favorable to serve in winnowing or fanning the wheat. They simply took any old thing and wove it together to create an artificial wind. Any old thing such as palm leaves or banana leaves. Sure they grow bananas in the Holy land; they have palm trees too. Palm leaves could make a good size fan. We, therefore, note not only can the fan be made out of anything, when it has served its purpose, it can be thrown away because it is no good, only some manmade object nevertheless it beautifully serves its purpose. Therefore, I must say and if you will study it out you will agree with me, placed within this very message which was designed to bring you onto the threshing floor or upon the Word, yes placed within the confines of this message are the very ingredients God will use to make himself a fan. Hear me, there is a fan woven into this message designed to blow you right off the threshing floor if you refuse to be brought onto the floor by a true revelation. Sooner or later we are all going to discover of what kind of spirit we are and it will be determined upon this floor. We are going to find out if we truly have the Holy Ghost and recall the Holy Ghost in this message which brought you to the Word of God (God’s threshing floor) will cause you to hear this message correctly. Correctly that is according to the thinking of the Holy Ghost. You will be able to see the true revelation as it fits perfectly within the Word of God, that is provided you have the Holy Ghost. If you do not have the Holy Ghost, the true Spirit of Christ, then you are only a carrier of the letter of this message, you will have served your purpose. It will be seen as you have only been the husk which attached itself to the wheat as you too had to be brought onto the threshing floor whereby the fan might be applied against you to see if it was possible to fan you off the Word or off the threshing floor.


CERTAIN STATEMENTS WOVEN INTO THE FAN


Beloved, built into this message are certain statements uttered by the same man who spoke under the inspiration and it is these statements the Holy Ghost will use to weave himself a fan to create a wind of enough pressure if possible to blow you off the threshing floor. All will be subject to these winds. These certain statements will never take you to the scripture, they were not designed to, instead they were designed to serve as a fan to see if you can stand the pressure which they will create. These are the very statements people will take and compile and knit together to create themselves a separate revelation (from the Word) which, again I repeat, will never line up with the Word. Then beloved, it is plain to see why so many walking around today will not even preach from the Bible any more. Nevertheless, I have said time and again, if that man were here on earth and could stand behind a sacred desk do you know what he would have in his hand? Are you aware what he would preach from? It would be nothing other than this old book called the Bible. Beloved, I do hope you will try to understand what that prophet meant when he would declare, stick with the tapes and say it as I have said it. Now, there has to be a meaning behind that statement which must be properly understood because it so happens in practically every major point of this message which deals with a biblical subject whether it be Serpent Seed, 70 weeks of Daniel or whatever there will be found in the overall message dual statements which run parallel. ONE HELPS SERVE AS A FAN. Beloved, perhaps this will explain why we were faced with the only message which carried dual statements and this was the only messenger who has ever come upon the face of this earth who was permitted to speak in such a way. Nevertheless, I say because of what God will use these statements for it was ordained to be exactly this way because God needed a fan and the fan had to be built within this message. Therefore, in order for certain statements to be woven into a FAN it has to be something not scriptural because how could the true revelation take you off a true revelation and you with the true Holy Ghost to lead you into all Truth. Luther never spoke in such a manner. His message carried only one line of thought, that of FAITH. Everything he wrote dealt strictly around his revelation of Faith. Everything he talked about was around this revelation. He had no other revelation on anything other than faith. Calvin’s message was Eternal Security of the Believer. Naturally, certain Calvinistic teachers went to the far extreme yet that does not change the Word of God. There is an Eternal Security for the true revelated believer who is the elect of God. All the winds could not blow the elect off the word of God once they had seen, by revelation, the truth of their hour. Knox’s message was centered around Predestination and Wesley’s around Sanctification, yet all these men spoke and wrote respectively according to the revelation which was given within their hour yet not one of them spoke in a dual language. Again I repeat, this is the only messenger who has ever spoken in dual statements. Furthermore, this is the message where the fan is placed.


EXPLANATION OF DUAL STATEMENTS


Listen carefully as I give you some illustrations of what I mean by dual statements and then you will see the purpose and operation of the fan and where it lies whereby you may be able to recognize its operation. Much is heard today concerning a prehistoric world. It is much a proven fact life existed on this planet in some form before our origin or beginning in the Garden of Eden. In the Seal Book, pg. 292, Bro. Branham makes reference to someone criticizing him because of his belief pertaining to the story of Genesis. That person said, you don’t mean to tell me you believe such and such…I most certainly do, declared Bro. Branham. I believe before the story of Genesis of man in the Garden of Eden there had to be life here, etc. Bro. Branham says on Pg. 292, Seal Book he believes there was a creation here prior to this present one though he never at any time followed it with a message which would explain the subject more in detail. Later we preached and published an article on the subject entitled THE RISE AND FALL OF SATAN. Surely, no one could believe the devil took his original beginning in our Garden of Eden where already he was a fallen angel. Isaiah 14 tells us he was a mighty angel while Ezekial 28 tells us he was the most anointed cherubim who walked up and down amidst the stones of fire in the garden of God. Although this garden is also called Eden, it is not our Eden because our Eden was an Eden of plant life and not of stones of fire. Scripture teaches Lucifer was perfect in all of his ways until iniquity was found in him. Beloved, God found iniquity in Lucifer long before our Garden of Eden began. Eden means Paradise or Beginning of God. John 8, Jesus accused certain Pharisees of their being or their father the devil saying, the lust of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning who abode not in the truth but was a liar and the father of it. Naturally, carnal minded people try to start that fulfilment where Cain slew Abel. Beloved, when Cain slew Abel, Satan was only back up to his same old game again. Before the devil ever became a murderer and a liar, he was a righteous archangel yet somewhere Lucifer’s fall had to be in a prehistoric age because when our story of man begins in Eden, Lucifer is already the devil and is standing in the background waiting for his opportunity to move in. Remember, now I am showing you the operation of the fan, where it is that you may be able to recognize this operation because John the Baptist said it must come and with this fan he will thoroughly purge his wheat floor. Now brace yourself and note another statement by this same prophet who had just declared in the Seal Book, Pg. 292, he believed there was some kind of life here, sometime prior to our origin. However, in preaching a message entitled SATAN’S EDEN, here it appears he is saying all these prehistoric dinosaurs etc., were in our Garden of Eden. Naturally, someone is going to say, you are doing nothing but criticizing. No, I am not! I am trying to show you the operation of the fan and I am trying to show you a man who was permitted by the Holy Ghost to make such statements which could be weaved into a fan to blow away all of that which is not true wheat from the thrashing floor and since we are on the threshing floor of God’s Word we are going to have to be subject to this fan; therefore, it behooves us to know what the fan is and how it operated at the endtime. Do you know if there had been dinosaurs in our Garden of Eden they would have also been in Noah’s Ark and had they been in Noah’s Ark you would be running from them today. Every animal on the face of this earth today had an ancestor in Noah’s Ark; the horse, cow, etc, however, not one of these giant lizards, dinosaurs, etc. was found in that ark. Yet, beloved, God has allowed their bones to be buried and preserved through time to be infallible testimony that the Creator himself was the one who kept the history of all of that age prior to our own. When you take that and link it with scripture such as John 8, Ezek. 28, Isa. 14 and examine that statement where Jesus told his excited disciples who had returned finding the devils were subject to them through his name, said, I saw Satan fall like a (streak of lightning) (Lk. 10:18) Where did he fall? In our Eden? No, Satan had fallen long before that; therefore, there had to be another age and recall when Lucifer fell, quite a number fell with him. Now, I will say no more about this only we have an article entitled TESTING AND FALL OF SATAN if you are further interested. Surely, any true Holy Ghost filled Christian can take that statement and lay it right along beside Genesis, Isa. 14, Ezek. 28 and John 8 and determine Satan had a rise and fall in some prehistoric age where undoubtedly God had made this planet to be such a beautiful place for Lucifer to rule over before he fell, back when he was called son of the Morning, most anointed cherubim, placed to rule over this planet accompanied by a great host of angels. Centuries rocked on and the planet became heavily populated with these huge gigantic beasts then Lucifer was faced with a choice just as Adam and Eve were faced and pride took Lucifer. Pride led to murder and murder led to being questioned by the Almighty and the devil told a lie. That prehistoric man of which they are still finding his bones, who absolutely had no connection with you and I yet lived in some prehistoric world, was in no way like man as we know him because when God created man in our Garden he made him a little lower than the angels and crowned him with glory and honor that he should have dominion over the same planet. From scripture we learn Satan was standing in the background of our Eden waiting for his opportunity to seize control again of this planet. To me, it goes to prove one thing, he once had control of it and he isn’t going to give it up without a fight to any new rulership. God gave Adam and Eve an animal kingdom more their size because God knew once man had fallen into sin and enmity had appeared in these huge creatures, they would rip and tear everything to pieces and I seriously have my doubts if we would have any world population as we have today. This planet would no doubt be bleached with human bones lying everywhere. Therefore, God gave man an animal kingdom more his size, one which he could handle because he knew enmity would come between him and the creature once man sinned. Now, why can’t people get their face back in this Bible? Why can’t they allow the Holy Ghost to guide them? Recall we are looking at the thing which in this case (is statements from this message) which create and serve as a fan to fan people right off the foundation of this World.

 

 

A FEW MORE ILLUSTRATIONS


I have a few more illustrations on major thoughts found in this message, only to show you the working of the fan in the spiritual sense and recall we said the fan was built into the message itself, the message designed to bring you and I to the threshing floor. It will be this fan operation which will prove if we are pure developed wheat. Step inside our Eden for a moment, where our fall originated. Recall how God had stated to Adam and Eve they were to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth. Naturally, the key to all this lies in the word “re” which means to fill up again. A drinking glass which has been full of water can be refilled, even a brand new glass which has only been filled once can still be refilled. Yet, if nothing has ever been in the glass, all I could say would be fill it up. Never could I say refill it because it had never been full of anything before. Adam and Eve were commissioned to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth. (So was Noah, Gen.9) How will they carry out this commission? Gen. 3 tells us there were two trees planted in the midst of the Garden. Naturally, in the Garden was every fruit bearing tree which bore fruit after its kind. In the midst of the Garden, he placed the Tree of Life and Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil and instructed the young couple they might eat of all the trees freely, but under no circumstances were they to touch the tree which stood in the midst of the Garden. For the day thou eatest thereof they shalt surely die. Beloved, if the tree of knowledge was a natural tree which bore some kind of plant life, man ate it and sinned and death followed, then we must realize if eating fruit of some natural plant life caused death then redemption from that death and sin must also come from eating some kind of plant life. Not desiring to get involved in this subject other than to show you the operation of a fan created by certain statements all we will say we have three lengthy articles dealing with this subject which are yours for the asking. The prophet explained what eating of the tree of knowledge was and how the fall came through the fact Eve had a relationship with the serpent. Carnal understanding thinks this serpent to have been some creeping reptile. That is not the serpent’s original form; he walked upright and talked. God gave to Adam and Eve who were created in his image, a creature which was at the head of the animal kingdom, who had a measure of intelligence that could be a servant to Adam and Eve. As the horse was given for man to ride and different beast of burdens were given to assist man in his earthly labors so was the serpent given to serve man also. Furthermore, my belief is this serpent was made in no other image than that of the prehistoric man and no doubt there was certain other animals in the Garden which also carried the same image and likeness as that of prehistoric animals. Perhaps the only difference being the size, ours considerably smaller. The serpent being the intellectual creature he was, afforded Satan an opportunity to use him for the purpose he did and once that was said it was left in the minds of certain people if the eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge which happened between the serpent and Eve was actually a sex act, in their minds that makes them believe sex is wrong and could never have been in God’s original plan to fulfill his commission to multiply (Gen. 2) which naturally cause people to wonder, originally just how was Adam and Eve suppose to carry out their commission of multiplying and replenishing the earth. Then a statement would be made by this messenger which would make it appear the original plan had not been sex at all, instead it was to be by the spoken word. Naturally, I was criticized for publishing our three articles TWO LAWS OF EDEN, FROM EDEN TO THE FLOOD and our last article BE FRUITFUL AND MULTIPLY of which you may have a copy if you desire.


MULTIPLY HOW?


However, when we take all these dual statements into the Bible and try and find which one lines up with the Word and which one serves as a fan to fan people of the Word, it must be remembered even according to Bro. Branham’s own teaching that the Bible is the final test of any man’s revelation. Recall, in Bro. Branham’s messages, there are two separate statements along this line. One place he would show how before Adam and Eve could fulfill the divine commission of Be Fruitful Multiply, she was already found pregnant by the work of the devil. Many such statements are made along this line yet there are other indications where children would suppose to have been by the spoken word. Since both statements can’t fall in line with the Word, one serves as the fan, the other falls in line with the revelation of the Word. Let us turn to the Word before that fall ever took place.


ADAM’S PROPHECY


adam's prophecyIsn’t it strange how Adam, after having been put to sleep in the first surgical operation which never even left a scar when God opened his side and removed a rib and formed a woman, seeing this beautiful creature, looked at her and prophesied; truly, this is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh, therefore, she shall be called woman, therefore, shall a man leave father and mother and shall cleave unto his wife and they two shall be one flesh. Recall, Adam and Eve had not had an earthly father and mother then why would he be talking like this, because God is speaking to him by revelation. God knew Adam was going to be a father as well as Eve a mother. The two trees in the midst of the garden were two laws by which the young couple would govern their marital life and birth of their children. Both trees involved sex, one being the divine route had there never been a fall, while the other was God’s provided or permissible way by which man chose to disobey God and accept the sex act strictly on a pleasure basis rather than fulfilling the divine plan of God to only use it to bring forth another son or daughter who would have been full of eternal life. Neither tree was plant life, both were spiritual trees or laws of God which first of all regulated their sexual pattern in fulfilling the commission. They were two laws whereby the family tree would reproduce itself. However, remember the serpent beguiled Eve and she committed the act of fornication under the wrong tree. God’s divine law of reproduction before that hour of sin worked in the woman’s body on the same principle as that of the other females of the animal kingdom. Satan, knowing that law in her body was getting ready to operate, approached the serpent who approached Eve through fornication. Knowing the act could now be used for pleasure as well as a divine purpose of God in bringing forth another son or daughter Eve approaches Adam with her newfound knowledge. Eve approached Adam strictly on the basis for pleasure not for the intended divine purpose to bring forth life into the world. Naturally, when the act was introduced to Adam strictly on the pleasure basis, God would not permit them to use it under the guidance of the tree of life and reap the benefits of Eternal Life, nevertheless, the working of the law inside her body is going to cause her to conceive by both relationships which had been introduced solely on the basis of pleasure. For using this act for pleasure only they were cast out of the Garden never being allowed to eat of the tree of life. Look back for a moment at what that act under the tree of life would have produced. Naturally, under either tree the law would have operated in her body. Man is only the carrier of the life germ. The law could only work in the woman’s body when the law had reached its full mature season. Then and then alone was the intimate relationship to be done which would have absolutely been holy and pure in the eyes of God and would have solely gathered the benefits of the tree of life. Recall, it is only when the law of reproduction is in operation in the animal kingdom that causes the female at that time only to search out the male to father her young. At any other time than when this law is in operation if a male approached the female she would not receive him and he would probably have scars all over his body. Had Eve put scars on the serpent as the female would do the male animal today we wouldn’t be in the shape we are, instead every baby would be born with Eternal Life. Motherhood would not be filled with sorrow. Childbearing would be as simple and painless as a peach tree bearing a peach. Certain statements along with his other line of thought would be uttered by this prophet that the original plan of God for reproduction was by the spoken Word leaving it in the mind of some that the original plan of reproduction was never intended to be a sex act, instead Adam would have spoken the word and children would have simply come forth from the ground. However, if that would have happened in the original, how would man ever have known a father or mother as Adam prophesied? How could man have referred to man as father and woman as mother yet again on Pg. 452 in the Seal Book, this same prophet used such statements as this, the sex glands were placed in the human body for reproduction of life upon this earth. This kind of statement lines up perfectly with the Word while the others to the contrary serve as the fan to blow you off the threshing floor of God’s Word.


BELIEVER WALK ON ASHES


Now concerning the next point which has also brought confusion, it deals with whether people walked out upon the ashes of the wicked before or after the millennium. First, you should read Mal. 4:1-3 then in the Seal Book, Pg. 100 and also 148 speaking of the office of Mal. 4:5-6 B Part, Bro. Branham shows how this office restores the faith of the children back to the fathers and then the world judgment would strike and the earth would be burned and then the righteous would walk out upon the ashes of the wicked in the millennium. However, over on Pg. 150, he states the bride goes in with the groom. Then after the millennium walks out upon the ashes of the wicked and as you might know these odd statements are always out of continuity with his regular revelation of thought, nevertheless, they do take their toll leading people away from the Word of God.


MESSAGE BROUGHT US TO WORD (WHEAT FLOOR)


Now, I will not at this time go into any more of these statements. Our only purpose in showing you these is to prove within this message are certain statements of revelation made to bring the Bride completely in line with the Word, while other statements were made to feed the carnal mind in such a proportion it would serve as a fan and believe me beloved, there is quite a fanning process going on. Again, I say these certain statements were given in this way because God willed it to be uttered, due to the fact that carnal mind will never catch any revelation of the Holy Ghost that will put them back in line with the scriptures anyway. Therefore, that carnal mind will take certain statements and without even stopping to see if they will fit into the scriptures will begin to run as the old saying is, hog wild and pig crazy, and search for other statements to tie in with what they already have; whether it links with the Bible or not, they could care less and then run off and say what they have is the message and that Bro. Branham said this or that. While it is true, perhaps he did say it, but for what purpose? How is it to serve in God’s program? Remember many of these statements created a fan and right now it is fanning at everything left on the floor. If you cannot see the Lord Jesus working in this man’s life and ministry to reveal himself to an endtime people to put them into the revelation of this book then you missed the reason he was sent.


STATEMENTS CREATE WINDS


Again I repeat, there is a fan in the Lord’s hand which is his authority whereby he willed these same lips utter certain words which would be merely human expressions which would serve as a fan which is manmade to be used upon the threshing floor. The fan is strictly artificial and these statements do create certain winds of manmade doctrines while these individuals hide behind the prophet declaring he taught this as a revelation when he did no such thing. He brought out certain things man could use to make a fan to begin a fanning process and take people away from the bible truth while the true message puts the bride back in the Word whereby she may be on the same equal footing as the early church and believing in the same revelation of the Eternal God in which they believed. But what a shame it is today, nowhere beloved, did that early church look to a man in their ranks and call him a god. Certainly not! When Peter went to Cornelius’ house who fell on his face before Peter, Peter commanded for him to get up saying we are men just as you and yet he knew the will of the Lord. When Paul, over in Asia Minor, saw what those religious gentiles (though not Gentiles of the church) did, Acts 14, once they began to worship the apostles, the apostles rent their clothes in anguish. Not anywhere did the early Christian who walked in a true revelation according to God’s plan of salvation ever worship a man in their ranks, why because the preaching of the gospel enlightened those who perhaps in the past had fallen down many times and worshipped man identifying him with God. Nevertheless, those converted gentiles respected each one of the Lord’s servants as to the office they held and no more.


REFORMATION GIVEN TO BRING US AWAY FROM SUCH THINGS


It was only within the Roman Catholic church which built their structure on the virtue of the Apostle Peter did the Pope in time build themselves into a chair of authority whereby they could demand their very church subjects to bow and kiss his feet or ring on his hand. Can’t you see how the Reformation was designed to get us away from all that whereby the time God would come on the scene down at the end of the age and manifest himself through a little vessel of clay to show us his grace in calling us back to the revelation of scripture and then for people to be so ignorant as to idolize the flesh of man as God, a flesh which God had greatly used there wanting to make it God simply because you can’t see God, truly it reveals that old attribute of an unconverted gentile who knows not the reality of a true God. This message was to make of you a Bible believing, apostolic Christian otherwise you haven’t seen Mal. 4:5-6. Turn back and read it. It says, he is to turn you back, NOT AWAY FROM or to another source, to some other spirit or some other gospel, NO SIR! That office was to turn you back to what those apostolic fathers taught whereby you could once again see God and recognize him in the ruth of revelation through a true spirit, through a true revelation that in such an hour as Satan would move in to bring death to everything around us closing in on every hand, then God by the same token knowing there would be a people at the end of the age with these carnal ideas who would attach themselves to this movement permitted the man to utter statements which are blended right into this message to serve as that fan-the same message pulling you into this Bible like a magnet is taking others, through certain statements which create a fan and absolutely fans them completely off the precious Word of Life, serving as God’s threshing floor! It is God’s doings, not man’s. See when I say that some critics will say you are saying the prophet made a mistake. No, beloved, I am not saying that at all. I am saying God willed him to say certain things because God was going to take those things and use them to create a great fan. God willed it to be so. Beloved, these statements are woven by people into their own private revelations. And why should these people teach from the Bible seeing they have no revelation on the Word because their revelation is contrary to the Word. Sometime ago a person approached me saying he wanted to discuss this message. However, said the man, if you want to know anything about what the prophet said in the books I will talk with you, but if you want to discuss it on the basis of the Bible, I won’t do it. Then beloved, all I can say is anyone who would refuse to discuss this message in the light of the bible, if their reality of being in this message has gone no deeper than that I doubt such a person has ever been called to preach, Rom. 10:15. It is the revelation of this Word the office of Mal. 4:5-6 was to restore us back unto. Therefore, I urge you when you read a Spoken Word book, study it as we do, study or read for the thought which will place you back in line with the Bible, however, if in reading you can’t seem to catch the thought or mind of God through the revelation of the Holy Ghost who is placing you back in this Bible, you should simply place that statement upon the shelf of your mind and leave it there until God shows you where it fits in the Word, otherwise, you will no doubt take the statement and go off in a different route completely away from the Word. In other words you would be fanned completely off the Truth. Why? Because Matt. 3:12 tells us there is a fan to be in his hand and that FAN is built right into this endtime message. It was the Lord who spoke the Word of revelation through the prophet to restore the Bride to the Word and it was also the Lord who placed the FAN within this very message. That is why denominations look at this movement and seeing only those adverse ideas springing up from the teaching of Bro. Branham and they, realizing they fit nowhere in the Word automatically say within themselves this thing is from the pit of hell! Don’t we realize it had to be so in the endtime.


FRONT SIGHT, FIXED SIGHT


Church Age Book, page 328This Bible is God’s written Word and I would for a moment like for you to think of it as the fixed front sight of a rifle and the books which we love so much that contains within them God’s revelation along with man’s statements of thought. I would like for you to look at the Spoken Word books as the rear sight on a rifle. If you ever get the two sights in line, you will hit the target. In this case, the target is right on the Word. The front sight, being a fixed sight, synchronized with the bore of the barrel from the factory, is the sight you do not tamper with, however, in judging your distance to fire at a target, taking into consideration the wind which will affect the flight of travel of the bullet, it is up to the individual to set the rear sight accordingly because it is the rear sight which determines the angle you place the bore of the gun in respect to the target. Therefore, it all boils down to this, you must have a spiritual eye to align these two sights together to hit the target, which is the WORD, ere you shoot wild. This very prophet of whom certain individuals want to declare is God warned this movement (Pg. 328, in Church Age Book) making reference to the messenger to the age being a prophet messenger said he would have such power with God he would be mistaken by some of his brethren as being none other than the Lord Jesus Christ but his warning answer to this was HE IS NOT THE LORD JESUS, he is just one of the brethren.


THEY SAID


Don’t we realize beloved in Matt. 24 Christ spoke in two different places showing how all this would wind up, they will say he is here or there, believe it not. Note who is bringing this false report according to Christ, some group in the endtime he refers to as they. He said they spoke this and watch what he says about why not to believe what they said. For there shall arise false christs (meaning false anointed ones) and false prophets going all over the world teaching such things. However, watch the Lord Jesus come right back and say, Lo, they will say he is in the desert. Now I don’t want you to miss this. But, Bro. Branham took up this very same statement in this same paragraph on page 328 knowing it would apply to the endtime messenger who at that time many would be calling the Lord makes the following remark: Lo, when they say he is in the desert, believe it not or he is in a secret chamber, pay no attention to it. See beloved, there is a FAN in operation and it is in this message. Believe me, it is blowing like everything. Yes, out of that same message which called you to the Word of God, which is the spiritual threshing floor to thresh out all of your ideas that you would fall completely in line with this Word it is none other than this same message which has the FAN placed within it and is it ever blowing as certain men have taken certain statements which are woven into a FAN that shall blow against people. And if we don’t lay close to the Word of God it will blow us right off the Word back into darkness. I am closing with this illustration, these statements which are now woven into a FAN are in use and creating a larger, stronger and more forcible wind daily because they must sweep away everything or thoroughly purge the floor carrying away everything from the revelation of this Book which can be affected by the fanning wind and if you and I don’t have the Holy Ghost we will bounce right off with one of these strong winds. Some people say, oh but now I am so confused I don’t know what to believe. May I ask you one question? Do you have the Holy Ghost? If so, Jesus said this is the Spirit of Truth and will guide you into all truth showing you things to come and bring to your remembrance all things whatsoever I have told you. Beloved, the Holy Ghost will walk , lead and establish and assist you through these storms created by these winds of conflict which are blowing to take you off the Word. THERE IS A FAN IN THIS EARTH, IT IS NOT IN CATHOLICISM NOR IN PROTESTANTISM. It is in this message, THIS MESSAGE ORDAINED TO BRING THE TRUE WORD BRIDE BACK TO THE FAITH OF THE APOSTOLIC FATHERS, therefore, where else would you expect the FAN to appear except in the same place where God is doing his work with his wheat. This Word of revelation is the threshing floor, we had better get on it and I don’t mean put the book on the floor and stand on it either, IT IS THE REVELATION OF WHAT THIS BOOK IS TALKING ABOUT THAT YOU MUST STAND UPON. IT IS THIS MESSAGE WHICH WAS ORDAINED TO BRING YOU BACK IN LINE WITH THE WORD WHICH THE EARLY CHURCH LAUNCHED AND MEN STRAYED FROM, GOING OFF INTO THE DARK AGES. God desired to bring you back to it, not take you from it. Had he never wanted you to get back to the Word, he no doubt would have left the church in the Dark Ages. She couldn’t have been further from the Truth than she was in that hour but I am glad after all is said and done, this Bible and this one alone will be God’s final test for every mortal soul walking the face of this earth

Reading Between The Lines

TEXT: DANIEL CHAPTERS 2 & 3

 

INTRODUCTION:

 

WHAT HAPPENED IN NIMROD’S REBELLIOUS, ANCIENT KINGDOM OF BABYLON, WHICH HE FOUNDED, THAT CAUSED ALMIGHTY GOD TO TAKE DRASTIC STEPS SCATTERING ALL THE PEOPLE AND CONFUSING THEIR LANGUAGE AFTER HAVING BLESSED MANKIND? (GENESIS 9) WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A GENTILE PEOPLE REFUSES TO RETAIN A CORRECT KNOWLEDGE OF GOD IN THEIR THINKING, BUT INSTEAD EXPERIMENTS WITH IT? WHAT HAPPENED IN ANCIENT BABYLON MANY CENTURIES LATER IN THE BEGINNING OF A GENTILE DISPENSATION AS A RELIGIOUS IDOLATROUS KING WITNESSED FOR THE FIRST TIME THE REVEALING POWER OF GOD IN THE LIFE OF A PROPHET SERVANT, WHICH RESULTED IN THE ERECTION OF AN IMAGE OR STATUE WHEREUPON ALL WERE COMMANDED TO ATTEND A CERTAIN WORSHIP SERVICE, THAT IS, ALL EXCEPT DANIEL? WHY WAS DANIEL EXCLUDED WHEN HIS BRETHREN WERE COMMANDED TO ATTEND? HOW DOES THIS DIFFER WITH A RELIGIOUS GENTILE PEOPLE OF THE 20TH CENTURY, WHO ALSO FOR THE FIRST TIME WITNESSED THE REVEALING POWER OF GOD IN ANOTHER SERVANT PROPHET AT THE CLOSE OF THE GENTILE DISPENSATION?

Contents

 

BRIEF HISTORY SURROUNDING BABYLON PRIOR TO 6TH CENTURY

 

Babylon, that ancient city of Mesopotamia, is located beside the Euphrates River at the head of the Persian Gulf some 55 miles south of modern Bagdad, and it was here civilization as we know it after the flood was cradled. By no means did the name Babylonian apply to every living soul in the vast land of Mesopotamia, indeed not but only to those dwelling in the southeastern part, which is now referred to as southern Iraq between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. This region is often called Mesopotamia, meaning in the Greek, “the land between the rivers.” Babylon, in ancient times, was bound by Elam on the east, the Persian on the southeast and the Arabian Desert on the south and west and Assyria, who continually overran Babylon until 612 B.C., was situated on the north. Among its chief cities beside Babylon were Nippur, Erech (modern Warka) and Larsa, Ur (old home place of Abraham), Eridu and Borsippa. However note, according to history Babylon never rose to a political center of the land until the reign of Hammurabi (1700 B.C.) who is well known by history students for his most famous code of laws. It should be noted that he was not a Chaldean, seeing no Chaldean such as Nebuchadnezzar II ruled Babylon until 612 B.C.

 

BABYLON – ACCORDING TO HOLY SCRIPTURES

 

The holy scriptures record in Genesis 10 and 11, gives all of this land of Mesopotamia a still earlier name calling it the land of Shinar. Here it was in this rich ancient territory, lying between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in Southeast Asia, a migration from the seed of the three sons of Noah; Shem, Ham and Japheth, under the leadership of Cush’s son, Nimrod, drifted into this area several generations after the flood. It was here in this rich fertile Crescent, called land of Shinar, something drastic happened which changed the entire destiny of the gentile world, something secular history failed to record, although occasionally will refer to the tower of Babel. Nevertheless, because history is silent concerning this period stating only there was a people in the land during this hour and although little is known about them, it’s the Bible that tells the story of these people found in Genesis 10 and 11. Yes, there most certainly was a people in this area, a people who only a short period of time after the flood had already drifted from the knowledge of the living and true God! Genesis 11:2-9, must be read into the setting of Genesis 10:8-32, for a complete story upon these people who lived in the land of Shinar. Nimrod, the son of Cush, the grandson of Ham, several generations after the flood journeyed from the east with descendants of Shem, Ham and Japheth and found the plain in the land of Shinar and there they dwelt saying one to another, let us take brick and burn them thoroughly. So, with brick for stone and slime for mortar they said let us build us a city and a tower whose top may reach into the heavens and let us make us a name lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the earth, Genesis 11:1-4. Yes, Nimrod came into this area with a people who had already departed from the knowledge of the true and living God to serve idols in this land later to be called Babylon. However, in that hour it was referred to as Babel, Erech, Accad and Calneh in the land of Shinar, all of which undoubtedly refer to ancient cities in the province of southeastern Mesopotamia. His kingdom reached throughout that area into Assyria where he built Ninevah, which later became the capitol of Assyria. The largest and by far the most important of these cities, since it was Nebuchadnezzar’s headquarters for his Baal religion, was later to be called Babylon or still another name, Babilu, meaning “gate of God.” However, you can be assured the gate referred to here has no reference to the living God of Heaven!

 

REBEL AGAINST GOD

 

Little is known scripturally concerning Nimrod other than he became a mighty one on the earth and a hunter before the Lord. (Genesis 10:8-9) Nimrod in Hebrews means REBEL, and the Jews understood rebel to mean rebel against God for truly, from all history reveals concerning Nimrod and his kingdom, it most assuredly was a kingdom of rebellion against the God of heaven. Babylon is designated as the land of Nimrod, (Micah 5:6).

 

NIMROD’S IDOLATROUS KINGDOM DISPERSED

 

During the hour of Nimrod’s young idolatrous Baal kingdom, scripture declares in Genesis 11:1, the people of all the earth were speaking ONE LANGUAGE. Under this idolatrous leadership of Nimrod they were going to build a city and a great tower, which soon became a symbol of all their God defying disobedience and pride and the phrase “build a tower into heaven” later became a symbol as to the heights of idolatry, statues and temples, built by the gentiles after being scattered over the earth and other languages imparted unto them. It must be remembered the God of heaven did come down, confused their tongues and scattered these people unto all parts of the earth causing the city and the tower to never be completed, thus receiving the name of Babel because of all the confusion that was created. The scattering abroad of these people did not leave behind them the knowledge of their heathen, idol worship which they had learned under Nimrod in the land of Shinar, but instead carried this knowledge with them! Therefore, as their new life began in different areas of the world it was these same old gods and idols, created in the land of Shinar (later called Babylon), which were carried with them! Although it will not be until many centuries later that Babylon, largest city in ancient Mesopotamia, Nimrods old headquarters, will ever become the capitol of any Babylonian Empire, and when it eventually arises to that point somewhere around the 17th Century, it will by no means be a Chaldean like Nebuchadnezzar II who will be seated on the throne as our lesson today shows. Why? Because the Chaldeans of Babylon never rose to power until 612 B.C., when they pushed the Chaldean Empire into such a position it was recognized by the God of heaven as the first world gentile empire.

 

CHALDEAN MIGRATION

 

The Chaldeans never begun to migrate into eastern Mesopotamia until around 1000 B.C., and it is only after that period that Babylon is referred to as Chaldea being called that after those Chaldeans who were a non-Semitic people, migrating from the desert of Arabia (around 1000 B.C.). What is it all about? Around 1000 B.C., God began shifting this people into a position where by 612 B.C., they would be in power to crush the Assyrian Empire and become the first heathen idol gentile world empire.

 

It is sometime after the scattering and confusion of tongues that history picks up the story and records a people coming into this area called Sumerians, who were known as Hamatic descent. Their coming into the land of Shinar is known because of excavations, discovered records, etc.. Babylon’s rich soil was formed by deposits drained down by these two rivers and it was these Hamatic people who drained off the swamps and irrigated the land causing the land to become so productive, in areas it was referred to as the Garden of Eden. They developed extensive irrigation systems of the land basing their livelihood of farming and trading and are credited with such inventions as the wagon wheel, plow and the development of measuring and surveying instruments. Their utensils, ornaments and weapons reveal they carried a considerable skill in arts and crafts.

 

ASSYRIA – 12TH – 6TH CENTURY B.C.

 

Hurrying on into the period between the 17th and 12th Century, Babylon was constantly overrun by many groups such as the Ammorite dynasty, Hittites, and etc., (more Hamites). However, when civilization finally revived around the 12th Century with Assyria having grown strong enough to become an empire and by 746 B.C., Assyria had reached its height as an empire having conquered all Mesopotamia, which included Babylon. Furthermore, they conquered Egypt and will have by 712 B.C., conquered Israel (the ten northern tribes) whose capitol is a Samaria.

 

500 YEARS AFTER FLOOD IDOLATRY EVERYWHERE

 

Long before the 21st Century B.C., long before the calling out of Abraham from this area (Genesis 12) Babylon, as well as all Mesopotamia, was sunk deep in idolatry. No doubt, the Province of Babylon had the first large cities throughout this area. Since lumber and stone was scarce brick was used for building (Genesis 11:3). Note please, although these people by now are well advanced in their new languages, outside each city throughout Mesopotamia stood a religious, heathen temple or what was referred to as a “ziggurat”, consisting of several series of terraces with a temple honoring some idol god standing high above the top terrace. Why was no community or city in all Asia found where the teaching of the living God flourished? Why so soon after the flood has mankind forgotten his Maker and Creator, having lost all the knowledge of a true and living God? Were these people unfortunate? Had they never heard of the Living God? Certainly they had! Paul declares in Romans 1, as he was ready to take the gospel to the gentile especially at Rome, he relates to them how in olden days, sometime after the flood the gentiles had a knowledge of God, but would not retain it, instead they played with it. When eight souls landed on the other side of the flood the knowledge of this God of heaven was prevalent. Noah offered sacrifice to this God of heaven and this God even made a covenant He would never send another flood. (Genesis 9)

 

History records how Shem, who lived 500 years after the flood, (Genesis 11:10), along with Japheth stood firmly for this one Great Eternal God of heaven. However, it appears while the gentiles knew God as Paul said they glorified him not as God, neither were they thankful rather became vain in their imagination and reasoning, and their foolish hearts were darkened. They simply couldn’t let well enough alone. Professing themselves to be wise (thinking themselves smart) they became fools. And, according to Paul, what made them fools or become so foolish, they changed the glory of this one incorruptible God into an image, (or something else). In their mind or thinking they changed His image, made likened unto a corruptible man and to birds, four footed beasts and creeping things. God, seeing the way these people were going and realizing now what their imagination would get them into as they persisted in believing the image of the God of heaven who they could not see (because he was Spirit), changed His image first in their carnal minds and carnal reasoning into that of corruptible man. However, some didn’t feel He was like a man in His makeup, they thought perhaps he was more like a bird which could fly, therefore some made statues of birds; while others didn’t feel He either resembled man or beast so they made statues of four-footed beasts; then finally as they became more vain in reasoning some thought He resembled creeping things, therefore, statues of these things began to appear among the gentiles, and as time rocked on these people who were so persistent to believe to believe such things were sealed in their ignorance and God gave them up. Romans 1:25 says God gave them up, “Who changed the truth of God into a lie and worshiped and served the creature more than the Creator who is blessed forever.” It all boils down to this and should be a great lesson to all of us if we persist in believing something untrue about the God of heaven and light comes to show us we have been in darkness in our thinking, yet if we persist to believe error, God will seal us in that error and allow us to go after the desires of our own heart and none can help us! Only history reveals the damage these dead, lifeless idols played in man kinds religious thinking. How horrible sexual sins were even introduced into their worship of certain idols.

 

In a few generations after the flood especially in the heart and mind of the Hamite race (not to exclude descendants of Shem and Japheth) no doubt, they can still remember their grandparents discussing the horror of the flood which drowned all mankind and the ark which preserved only eight precious souls. Yes, even in excavations of old Babylon such records of the flood has been found.

 

IDOLATROUS PRIESTS OF BABYLON

 

Heathen idolatrous priests rose up becoming the teachers of these new found religions centered around these new images such as corruptible man, birds, four-footed beasts and creeping things wherein God finally gave them up to their uncleanliness of thought and they drifted to every kind of perverted sexual sin in the category. These heathen idolatrous priests during those early days became most powerful often becoming the rulers of the people. Seemingly every little city in the province of Mesopotamia had its own god, which of course was some idol or statue as to what gentiles in the past had thought God resembled, Romans 1:19-25.

 

NIMROD, FOUNDER OF BABYLON BECOMING CHIEF GOD (MARDUK)

 

However, after the cities were more or less brought under one common rule, the local gods were still retained and given a special place in the hearts of the people. Nevertheless, Mardak (Baal) the god of the city of Babylon, Nimrod’s old religion by which he ruled Babylon and the province of his day, soon became the chief god of all the other areas of that country. And whatever empire was found ruling in the province of Mesopotamia usually always showed kindness or favor to the city of Babylon because of this being the headquarters of the chief god, Baal.

 

ABRAHAM – HIS CALL AND PURPOSE

 

GENESIS 12:1-2

 

According to Haley’s Bible Handbook, Shem, Noah’s son, was still alive when Abraham received his call of God to go into Canaan. As a matter of fact, Shem lived 75 years after Abraham entered Canaan to begin this new nation. Abraham entered Canaan to fulfill God’s will some 427 years after the flood. Joshua 24:2, told the children of Israel Abraham’s father, Terah and the father of Nachor, was a servant of other gods.

 

It is from this area, from Ur (which is known as Ur of Chaldeas) somewhere around 2081 B.C., after God has permitted the gentiles to drift on in their own thinking and set up a religious program around these various idols building their temples etc., that God speaks to a man, (Genesis 12) (whose city also has gone completely into idolatry) leave all his kindred and everything and begin a new and different race of people who shall in certain ways be different from all these other idolatrous gentile people, different in the respect that these people who would be from the seed of Abraham would be able to hear, recognize and worship the one true and living God, who chooses only to reveal Himself unto whomsoever He will, these gentile nations are unaware God has given them up and such a plan is set in motion as He speaks to Abraham to move out by faith. Look now what Romans 1:18-32, has gotten the so called smart gentiles into. And although it is true Judah and Israel (after the split of the 12 tribe nation) wandered off into idolatry, Israel with her golden calf worship and Judah constantly being plagued with the idolatrous worship of Mesopotamia, especially Babylon, God’s purpose in calling this new nation which will not be referred to as gentiles did serve its purpose. To see that a nation of people was produced from the seed of Abraham (in the Old Testament) who could hear and worship the one true and living God, read especially the account of Hebrews 11, where there you find quite a list of Israelites who through faith or revelation were able to hear God speak.

 

ASSYRIAN EMPIRE

 

While God is working out His new plan through His new nation, having given the gentiles to go after the lusts of their own hearts, His new nation called Israel who shall be guided and directed by the God of heaven is told by God Himself after freeing them from Egypt under Moses’s leadership that they must never build an image or try to erect any likeness of God as did the gentiles. (Exodus 20:2-5) God permits the gentiles to go on in their own deceived way to allow them to see what their dead idol gods can actually do for them. Assyria from the 12th Century, down through the 6th Century B.C., becomes master of all this area. The area of individual small nations and states vanishes forever with the rise of the Assyrians to power within the Fertile Crescent.

 

Assyria was a highland region overlooking the Euphrates region and shortly before 1200 B.C., these idolatrous hill folk who had their own idol gods began to press upon their neighbors in Babylon and Syria and by 700 B.C., became the total master of the Fertile Crescent, having conquered Egypt and Israel (10 northern tribes 721 B.C.) under their control. Up until this hour Assyria was the greatest empire the western world had ever known, however, because Judah and Jerusalem, the southern kingdom of Israel after the split of the 12 tribe nation, did not fall into the hands of these vicious idolatrous gentile people at that time seeing Jerusalem fell to the Babylonians around 604 B.C. Therefore, Assyria cannot be recognized as the first gentile world power nor can it be recognized as the beginning of the gentile dispensation, seeing that Christ, in Luke 21:24 stated the gentile dispensation was measured by a gentile flag flying over Jerusalem. Christ shows how the gentile dispensation of power would be ended once the gentile flag no longer flew over the holy city. Therefore, since Assyria never captured Judah and Jerusalem, although they crushed and took away the ten northern tribes whose capitol was in Samaria, they can in no wise be looked upon as the first gentile world empire only that they were the greatest gentile world empire; up until that hour.

 

JONAH SENT TO NINEVAH

 

How many recall the beautiful story of the prophet Jonah who feared to go to Ninevah, the capitol city of Assyria, which had more than six score thousand people who could not distinguish their right hand from their left, Jonah 4:11? God did not destroy Ninevah as Jonah had warned the people He would do, instead God heard their cry and spared their city for a considerable time allowing Babylon of the Chaldees to rise in 612 B.C., and crush their city becoming the new champions throughout the Fertile Crescent, and thus with Nebuchadnezzar’s capture of Judah and Jerusalem as the God of heaven delivered them into his hands for 70 years, Babylon now becomes the first gentile world empire and from that hour until 1967 A.D., no less than 24 different gentile flags constantly flew over Jerusalem, the holy city, while foreign troops marched within that holy city. Jerusalem, the city of peace, changed gentile hands 24 times during that period. Going back into the hands of the Jews in 1967 made the change come to 25 times!

 

Assyria’s rule was founded on efficient fighting methods. Iron weapons and ruthless treatment of rebellious people, few conquerors have ever been known to be as ruthless, cruel and heartless in war as these Assyrians. Cowed by this brutality, the people of the Fertile Crescent dared not revolt, however, as history reveals no people can lord it over others by the power of the sword for a very long time. After little more than a 100 years of total power the Assyrian Empire fell, from the assaults of two subject people, he Babylonian Chaldeans and tribesmen from the Persian mountains (Medes) and there was great rejoicing throughout the Near East as Ninevah, that wicked capitol city of Assyria of which God showed mercy in the day of Jonah, cruel and wicked as it was, fell in the hands of Babylon in 612 B.C., fell to a Chaldean prince, the father of Nebuchadnezzar II. After so long a time Babylon is once again in power, however this time it is under the Chaldeans, little had been heard from this region since those great days of Hammurabi, 17 Century B.C., until now, 612 B.C., when the Chaldean Babylonian kingdom rises to the position of the first gentile world empire, because God who still rules kingdoms permits them to crush Judah where our story begins today in Daniel 1.

 

BABYLON 612 B.C. AGAIN IN FRONT

 

Under the great King Nebuchadnezzar where our story begins today with Daniel and the three Hebrew children Babylon shall, for a short time, become the center of a new world empire or what God Himself refers to as the first gentile world empire. The people controlling this empire are called Chaldeans, therefore we refer to Nebuchadnezzar’s empire, whose father conquered Assyria, as the empire of Those Chaldeans, those people who had begun to enter into this area about 1000 B.C.

 

ASTROLOGY, NEW FIELD IN SCIENCE

 

In the field of astrology and astronomy new Babylon made great and important progress. For the first time the stars were studied with exact observation. We follow the Chaldeans in naming some days of the heavenly bodies; Monday, Saturday, etc. We also have inherited from them the seven day period called our week, as well as the division of the day into two twelve hour parts. With the Chaldean study of astronomy went the belief a knowledge of the heavens had much to do with foretelling the future. This false science is called astrology and has deceived millions throughout history. Look at what influence it holds even today upon American people. You still hear the expression, “thank you lucky stars.” No less than five million American people plan their lives daily by the stars, while other millions constantly consult the more than 1220-1750 daily newspapers which carry horoscopes. There is enough business to keep ten thousand full time (and 17,500 part time) astrologers working. An estimated forty million Americans aided by ten thousand professional full time astrologers have turned the zodiac into a two hundred million dollar year business. Where did it stem from – THE CHALDEANS WHO ARE THE GENTILES WHO PUSHED THEIR KINGDOM INTO THE FIRST GENTILE WORLD KINGDOM.

 

NEBUCHADNEZZAR AND JERUSALEM TEMPLE

 

Nebuchadnezzar is best known to Bible students for having crushed Judah and Jerusalem and for destroying the temple of Jehovah in 587 B.C. after having taken over the Babylon kingdom from his father Nabopolassar, the Chaldean prince in 604 B.C. As a matter of fact, outside his defeat of the Egyptians who tried to aid the crushed Assyrians and the capture of Jerusalem, little is known about Nebuchadnezzar’s military conquests during his 42 year reign. Instead he chose to follow the Babylonian tradition and boast of only his religious and architectural achievements saying little concerning his wars, therefore Nebuchadnezzar, this heathen gentile Chaldean king who was in total darkness, knew nothing of the God of heaven called Jehovah, yet one must never look upon him as not being religious. In fact he, like all Babylonians, were too religious serving many gods! He boasted much of his religious activities, such as rebuilding the temple in a height of 7-8 stories of the Baal (or Marduk) in Babylon, the chief god of all Babylon which had been destroyed during the days of the Assyrian Empire, the god which demanded great respect throughout Mesopotamia. Even before the Assyrians destroyed Babylon in 689 B.C., because of rebellion was first careful to carry away the statue of Baal for protection. Babylon long before Nebuchadnezzar came to the throne, always seemed to prosper through various periods simply because this god’s headquarters was there.

 

FOUR HEBREW CHILDREN IN BABYLON

 

Even before the first great deportation of Jews began to flow out of Judah in 598 B.C., already the chosen and skilled in wisdom of Judah were chained and led away to Babylon of which no doubt Daniel and the 3 Hebrew children were already in Babylon around 604 B.C., (Daniel 2:1). No doubt as our main characters in chapters 2 and 3 of Daniel, where we are about to READ BETWEEN THE LINES (for an unusual story) were deported from Judah, it should be noted Nebuchadnezzar followed the same procedure as that of the Assyrian policy in deporting conquered people in order to reduce their local nationalism or strength especially, as we saw Assyria do in crushing Samaria and removing the ten northern tribes in 721 B.D., never being allowed to return to the homeland, however in this case Judah will only remain in captivity 70 years then be released to return home. Undoubtedly, after 604 B.C., as this little group was being deported from Judah which carried Daniel and the 3 Hebrew children, their forced march encountered many hardships, nevertheless as Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego along with Daniel finally approached the sight of that great ancient city in Mesopotamia called Babylon, the 4 young men who had always been faithful servants to Jehovah God purposed in their young hearts regardless to the cost they would not betray the God of Heaven. Daniel and the 2 Hebrew children were undoubtedly very young perhaps not over 20 when Judah fell to Nebuchadnezzar and they were removed from their homeland to Babylon, where certainly their faith shall be severely tested in a land of many idol gods in days to come.

 

MAGNIFICENT BABYLON – DANIEL 4:30

 

However, as they approach this magnificent city of Babylon which has been described by many ancient writers marveling at the wonders and beauty of Babylon such as did the Greek historian Herodotus, who upon his visit in the 5th Century recorded how it was laid out in the form of a square. The Lord delivered Judah into the hands of Nebuchadnezzar who, in turn, instructs his chief eunuch to bring certain of the children of Israel who were well favored and skilled in all wisdom and cunning in knowledge and understanding science and such as had ability in them to stand in the king’s palace, and whom they might reach the learning and tongue of the Chaldeans. Just how many people of this caliber was taken out we do not know but among the number, verse 6 tells us, was Daniel, Hananiah, Misheal and Azariah (3 Hebrew children). After being given Babylonian names the four young men were placed in school. Verse 17 tells us unto these four young men God gave wisdom and skill in all learning and to Daniel was given understanding in all wisdom and dreams. Upon Nebuchadnezzar’s personal interview with these four boys he soon determined he had within his kingdom four young men which had been taken from Judah who had ten times the knowledge and ability of all the magicians and astrologers he had within his realm.

 

DREAM OF FOUR GENTILE WORLD EMPIRES

 

Chapter 2 informs us in the 2nd year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar he had a dream which troubled his spirit greatly, however the problem was, he had forgotten the dream. Calling upon his magicians and astrologers, soothsayers and Chaldeans, the king demanded an interpretation of his dream whereupon they requested the king tell them the dream and they would furnish the interpretation. To this the king answered, “it has gone from me”, and the king must not have been in a very good mood that day because he stated, “if you will not make known unto me the dream with the interpretation thereof ye shall be cut in pieces and your houses shall be made a dunghill!” Verse 5, “But is ye shew the dream, and the interpretation thereof, you shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honor: therefore shew me the dream, and the interpretation thereof.” To this again the Chaldeans said, “tell thy servants the dream and we shall show the interpretation of it.” The king answered, I now of a certainty you would gain the time because you see the thing has gone from me. After the king had given his magicians, astrologers, sorcerers and Chaldeans this bitter news of their fate ere they did not come up with the interpretation, the Chaldeans exclaimed, “there is not a man upon the earth who can show the king’s matter!” Furthermore they exclaimed, never has there been a king, lord or ruler who would ask such a thing of any magician, astrologers or Chaldean. And it was a rare thing the king would request such a thing! Now note, this following statement for it is most important in that it has something to do with what happened in Chapter 3 within the mind of Nebuchadnezzar! The wise men said to the king, THERE IS NONE OTHER THAN THE GODS WHICH DWELL NOT IN FLESH THAT CAN SHOW THE KING SUCH A THING! Verse 11, to this the king became angry and furious demanding all his wise men in Babylon be destroyed, which naturally included those younger men being schooled for these cabinet positions, among them Daniel and the 3 Hebrew children.

 

DANIEL INTERPRETS FORGOTTEN DREAM

 

We are about to see King Nebuchadnezzar receive the surprise of his life as orders has been given to destroy all the wise men of Babylon. What were these wise men of Babylon and why were they so important to the king’s administration? Recall after 612 B.C., when Nebuchadnezzar’s father, with the help of the Medes, crushed the Assyrians, who God had used to defeat and take Israel (northern house) (ten tribes) away in 721 B.C. The Chaldean empire now rises to its height engulfing a vast territory including Judah. Many different nationalities and religious ideas are incorporated into this empire, and therefore for Nebuchadnezzar to rule successfully over such a vast empire he certainly must have close contact with all these various people in order to secure and maintain a tight-fisted control at all times. Moreover, he must use a little initiative, or shall we say, a little psychology as he alone certainly cannot oversee this vast empire. Thus he chooses wise men throughout the various conquered territories to be placed in key positions. This board is called his personal advisory board and from Daniel1:3-4, we saw the quality of men throughout these conquered empires that Nebuchadnezzar was searching for to be his wise men (magicians, soothsayers, astronomers, etc). Note, every culture of life is represented in his cabinet. His wise men possibly were his philosophers, his magicians, the best in the land, no doubt did many slight of hand tricks when celebrities and dignitaries from other lands were entertained. His soothsayers, much like Jeanne Dixon, Irene Hughes and others.

 

Sometime ago I read a tract concerning how Mrs. Dixon testified she received her gift. She spoke of a vision where a snake wrapped itself around her body and when the experience was finished she had this gift!

 

No doubt important dignitaries from other countries traveled to Babylon to counsel with Nebuchadnezzar’s soothsayers. It would be amazing to know how many dignitaries in Washington and around the world have sought interviews with Mrs. Dixon and others like her. Yes, Nebuchadnezzar in his council undoubtedly had his Billy Graham’s who we have noticed has often given religious counsel to presidents of the U.S. Nebuchadnezzar had his Dale Carnegie’s to know how to win friends and influence people, and all the rest. This tactic was to have a cabinet behind him which represented all races and religious beliefs within his empire. And now Nebuchadnezzar had incorporated within his cabinet a representation of people who, unlike the others in his kingdom, serve a God of whom he, the great Nebuchadnezzar had destroyed his temple at Jerusalem and carried away his golden vessel into the land of Shinar, to the house of his own god. Nevertheless, Nebuchadnezzar is soon to learn more about this one God than he ever dreamed possible could be learned about any of the gods.

 

Undoubtedly throughout this short administration of Nebuchadnezzar up until his hour, he had often called upon his advisory board to advise and counsel him. If he wanted to know some far reaching predictions concerning plans for the future, he would turn to his astrologers. For recall both astrology and astronomy were rapidly growing in this hour of Babylon history. However, if he wanted to know something concerning some decision he must soon make, perhaps he would turn to his medium or soothsayer. As far as a perfect setting, carnally speaking within his kingdom, Nebuchadnezzar had a real setup. However, he has now incorporated into his empire a little group of people whose lives have been ruled and influenced by an entirely different source of power than that of demonism. Yet it now seems he is on the verge of abolishing what appears to be his perfect setup of cabinet members including all those in training to learn the Chaldean language, etc., among whom are Daniel and the 3 Hebrew children. The God of heaven looks upon the scene and reveals within this dream He is about to create an environment and set something in motion which started in that day and runs straight down into our very hour! (Something that is already at work in Europe today!)

 

DREAM ONLY THE GODS CAN REVEAL

 

It was during the second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign he retired for bed one night and as we shall later learn was pondering the future for his kingdom, etc. Although it doesn’t say it in those words that is what took place. Nebuchadnezzar had gone to bed with many thoughts upon his mind concerning the length of his kingdom, etc., and as he drifted off to sleep he had a dream. He awakened from sleep and although he had forgotten the dream it left a deep impression on his mind, but why should he worry, with such a board of wise men who always interpreted his dreams they would quicky give him an answer although this time it is different, he couldn’t remember the dream! It will be up to them to give both the dream and interpretation and not to do so means the loss of their life. Nebuchadnezzar is most disappointed with his board of wise men for no doubt he now believes them to be truly fakes. Instead of hearing what his dream was and the interpretation of it, he hears this answer, oh king, there is nothing short of the gods who do not dwell in flesh that can answer the request of the king!

 

Daniel, who is to be among the number slain, asked the captain of the guard, Arioch, what was the king’s haste. Arioch informed Daniel what had led the king to make his hasty decree. Verse 16, Daniel went in before the king and desired the king to give him a little time to show forth the interpretation. A brief stay of execution is granted and Daniel rushed to his house to make known to his three companions the terrible thing which is about to happen and instructs them to seriously pray for mercy to the God of heaven concerning this secret whereby Daniel and his companions would not perish.

 

DANIEL’S PRAISE AND PRAYER MEETING

 

Verse 19 declares the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision and was he ever a happy young man. Let’s listen to him as he blessed the God of heaven, for wisdom and might which is his. “He, Daniel says, changes times and seasons; removes kings and sets up kings and gives wisdom unto the wise and knowledge unto them that know understanding.” Daniel continued on in verse 22, still praising God for what he has done, “he revealeth the deep and secret things, he knoweth what is in the darkness and the light dwelleth with him.” Daniel is simply overjoyed as he realizes how his life and the life of his three companions will be spared, and he continues in verse 23, “I thank thee, and praise thee, of the God of my fathers, who hath given me wisdom and might, and hath made known unto me now what we desired of thee:” My, what a rejoicing prayer meeting Daniel is having as he continues to praise God, “for thou hast made known to us the king’s matter.”

 

GOD OF HEAVEN REVEALS SECRETS

 

Verse 24, Daniel hastens unto Arioch, whom the king had ordained to destroy all Babylon’s wise men. Destroy not the wise men of Babylon, Daniel exclaimed, bring me before the king and I will show unto the king the interpretation!

 

What is happening – the hand of God is setting a stage for something and Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego will play a lead role becoming the benefactors of what God is about to do. The king will receive the surprise of his life as he not only shall hear his dream and the interpretation, but for an added bonus he shall be told the thoughts of his mind which prompted such a dream. Arioch, with whom God had given Daniel favor, takes him before the king.

 

Let us examine our setting. Arioch, the captain of the guard, escorted Daniel, just a little humble but happy Jew, into this magnificent throne room of colored enameled brick where sat a bewildered and disturbed king, and said I have found a man of the captive of Judah who will make known to the king the interpretation. Why should he not be bewildered? His mind won’t allow him rest from thinking about a dream he can’t remember and the fact since no one but the gods can answer his request concerning his dream all of his wise men are soon to be executed. As the king looks up, seeing this young man standing before him in the presence of the loyal captain of his guard he ask, art thou able to make known unto me the dream I have seen and the interpretation thereof? To this Daniel answers, the secret the king has demanded can’t your wise men, astrologers, magicians, soothsayers, can’t they answer your dream, oh king? Verse 28, “But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets and makes known to King Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days.” The dream and the vision of thy head upon thy bed are these.

 

Here so early in the morning, perhaps long before the king would normally receive visitors, stands Daniel addressing him. Nebuchadnezzar was a royal king before whom dignitaries and representatives of other conquered powers had often stood frightened, bowing humbly at his feet, often begging for mercy or leniency. Recall, Nebuchadnezzar was the one responsible for Zedikah’s eyes being plucked out after his own sons had been killed before his very presence. Nevertheless, today here he sits on his royal throne all out of sorts, despondent and disturbed over his dream he simply cannot remember as this young Jewish lad begins to tell him, Oh, king, I have the answer to your dream troubling you; the one your magicians and wise men cannot answer but there is good news for you, oh, king, there is a God in heaven who knows all things! In order to convince you, oh, king, this is the truth, I am about to tell you, I would like to relate first some thoughts upon you mind that night when you retired for bed. Because it was these thoughts which actually produced your dream! I can see Nebuchadnezzar tug at his royal collar as he stares down at this lad, fascinated by his courage and boldness, yet speaking with such positiveness before royalty.

 

As Daniel continues, bit by bit the understanding of what he is saying slowly begins breaking through to the king, Oh, king, you went to bed and lay there for quite a while with certain thoughts running through your mind, pondering what would happen to your kingdom (normally why would Nebuchadnezzar be concerned over his kingdom seeing it was at its very height. Nebuchadnezzar knew from the past experience of other empires and kings how quickly fate would turn. How quickly conquered territories could band together and overthrow a ruling power. He no doubt remembers thoroughly the record of how his own father so easily with the help of the Medes upset and crushed the mighty wicked Assyrian Empire in 612 B.C., when actually only as far back as 689 B.C., just 77 short years before, because of strife between Babylon and Assyria, Assyria had completely destroyed the city of Babylon and is probably fully aware when Essarhaddon of Assyria next came to power; favored Babylon and rebuilt her city, restoring her privileges; how before his death his empire had been divided between two sons – one ruling Assyria and the other Babylon and from such a relationship conditions erupted into furious civil war, ending in the devastation of Babylon again in 648 B.C., and it was Nebuchadnezzar’s father following the death of Asshurbanipal of Assyria, with the help of the Medes had been able to seize the opportunity to overthrow and crush the Assyrian resistance, all by 612 B.C.),

 

Beloved, Daniel did not tell him this. This is actual history the king was more than familiar with and he was pondering – what about my kingdom; what about its future, not knowing the days of his kingdom were already numbered and would fall sometime later to the Medes and Persians. Recall, it was the Medes who had helped his father crush Assyria! Little did Nebuchadnezzar realize fate would permit the Medes to assist the Persians to overthrow the Babylonians! No, Nebuchadnezzar is not aware the days of his kingdom are already numbered, nor is he aware there is a God in the heavens who rules all things and has given him a dream which has disturbed him so greatly and not only explained the fate of his own empire, but there were three more world empires to follow after the downfall of his own empire.

 

Yes, in verse 29, even before Daniel touched on the dream, he told the king the thoughts in his mind that night, what should come to pass hereafter? It was the God of heaven (not one of his gods) who was showing to the king secret things which had never been known before concerning world kingdoms that should rise following his own. Verse 30, Daniel is careful to assure the king the secret is not given to him because of any wisdom he might possess more than someone else. Oh, no, but for their sake that the interpretation should be made known to the king; and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy own heart. In the king’s mind things are slowly becoming clear and no doubt he is thinking, that is right, I remember now I was thinking along those lines about things hereafter as to what would be the fate of my kingdom, etc., I was thinking about my mighty armies which have been able to crush the Egyptian forces who tried to assist Assyria and everything else which has risen up before me has been crushed and brought under my control! Oh, think of it beloved, here stood a young man, maybe not over 20 years of age, telling a great gentile king things that were in his mind even before he went to sleep and had his dream – things his own wise men had informed him no one but the gods would be able to do, yet here stood a lad doing exactly what they said man could not do! Can’t you imagine the effect on this king’s countenance, how it must have changed as he witnesses something he has never encountered before? Through all his dealings with his wise men nothing could compare with what was happening now.

 

INTERPRETATION OF DREAM

 

I can see Nebuchadnezzar prick up his ears like a pup dog and slide forward in his chair as Daniel continues, oh king, in your dream thou sawest and beheld a great image. This great image whose brightness was excellent stood before thee and the form thereof was terrible (slowly the dream is now returning to Nebuchadnezzar as Daniel continues). Never had he seen anything to compare with this! “The image had a head of fine gold, his breast and arms were of silver; his belly and thighs were of brass; his legs of iron; his feet part iron and part clay.” By this time Nebuchadnezzar is even more thoroughly convinced he had never witnessed anything like this. Was he standing before deity? Was what the wise men of Babylon said true when they exclaimed only the gods who have no form of flesh can reveal this to thee? Was this some god in human form standing before him revealing the very secrets of his own heart? One thing was sure, he had never encountered anything to compare with this! “You not only saw this gigantic image made of gold, silver and iron with feet mingled with iron and clay, but you saw something else oh king, you watched that image and you were so mystified by it because next you saw a huge stone cut out of a mountain (cut out without hands), and suddenly from a distance you saw that stone roll down the mountainside out into the plains and that stone didn’t strike the image in the head, the stomach, nor even in the legs; that stone you saw hit him squarely in the feet, on his ten toes and it smote the image upon the feet of iron and clay and broke them to pieces! Then was the gold, silver, brass, iron and clay broken to pieces together, and become like the chaff of the summer threshing floor and the wind carried them away that no place has found for them, but the stone that smote the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth. No doubt at this point Nebuchadnezzar is so flabbergasted at the ability of this lad as he wonders what can be the interpretation to such a dream?

 

God permitted this setting to happen in this very manner in order to set something in motion. Think of it, Nebuchadnezzar who had at his disposal the greatest of wise men Babylon could produce, at no time in his life had he ever seen such a display of wisdom. He had often watched his magicians at work with their sleight of hand magic. Have you even seen a magician pull a rabbit from a hat? Sure you have, but it wasn’t because they had power to create a rabbit, was it? No, you can rest assured it was a trick of the hand, but Nebuchadnezzar knew what he was witnessing was no trick, it was the truth! Daniel continues further, are you ready for the interpretation? By now Nebuchadnezzar is probably ready for anything and no doubt for the moment has forgotten he is the king, because he feels there is something far greater than a king standing here before him. He, being a gentile, could recognize the work of deity but can see no further than the flesh of Daniel. Verse 37, “Oh, king, thou are a king of kings: for the God of heaven has given thee a kingdom, power, and strength and glory. (38) And wherever the children of men dwell, the beast of the field and the fowls of the heaven have been given unto thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all, THOU ARE THE HEAD OF GOLD. (39) And after thee shall rise another kingdom inferior to thee and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all of the earth. (40) And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron:” (well, by now that should explain to the king there are yet other kingdoms on the horizon.) No doubt as Daniel was explaining to Nebuchadnezzar how he was that head of gold on the image and how he was a king of kings, I imagine that made his heart swell with pride to think there was a God in heaven of whom he knew nothing who would do all this for him, for Daniel had said the God of heaven has given you the kingdoms of men. Nevertheless, after you shall arise another kingdom inferior.

 

3 GENTILE KINGDOMS TO FOLLOW

 

EACH KINGDOM REPRESENTED BY HARDER METAL

 

Let us examine this for a moment, how can a kingdom arise which would be inferior and yet defeat him? The head on this image was fine gold and represented Babylon, the first world empire. Gold we know is the most valuable of all metals. The next kingdom which is inferior and shall overthrow Babylon is of silver, of lesser value than gold, yet it has one advantage, it was a little harder metal which we use for silverware, knives, etc. After that kingdom will come still another one represented by still a less valuable material, brass. Brass is still a harder metal, isn’t it? Watch for a moment how this applies with the culture of time. We note the advancement of man’s achievements are here illustrated in each of these metals. First, we see Babylon was soft (gold), that was a period in history when men were pliable and could be dealt with, however, once we come to the silver, their temperament is getting a little harder; then we come into the brass age which is still a little harder. In other words, we find culture, learning and science becoming more and more increased as men become more and more learned in the working of their earthly metals etc. Following brass came iron, and we know it is the strongest metal of all. This represents men in the Roman Empire. With iron you can mold and temper to bring forth steel and all other kinds of hard metals. Yes, iron is the hardest element known to man! However not, when you reach the feet of the image, which is the ten toes, Daniel was heard to express them as “in the days of these kings (verse 44) meaning, when man’s time would have existed long enough on this earth, this image would be represented by ten kingdoms of men which are signified in those ten toes.”

 

FIRST MENTION OF GOD SETTING UP A KINGDOM

 

Now the rock you saw hewn out of the mountain without hands which hit the image on the feet or ten toes mingled with clay and iron, Daniel said, was the God of heaven setting up a different kingdom here on earth which shall eventually subdue all kingdoms of the world! Please note something here, for the first time in the history of mankind throughout all the entire Middle East never had there ever been a prophecy uttered that fell on the ears of a gentile that the God of heaven one day would set up a kingdom! Note further, where it would be set up, RIGHT THERE ON EARTH! In order to begin a kingdom there would first need to be a king born. From which race did he come, this king to head God’s kingdom, from out of the Jewish race of people of which Daniel was a part. Note also where, on this earth, the news of this kingdom was first announced – IN BABYLON IN A GENTILE KING’S THRONE ROOM! From the very territories from which the wise men came sometime after the birth of Jesus (possibly as many as 2 years) who had been born in Bethlehem of Judea. These wise men coming bearing gifts came from where, THE MIDDLE EAST! Somewhere from that far country of Chaldea, for these wise men were none other than astrologers and stargazers who approached Herod inquiring, where is he who is born King of the Jews, for we have seen his star and have come to worship him? Those wise men no doubt remembered how the record showed Daniel, a Jew, who had lived in Babylon in the 5th Century had interpreted their king’s dream wherein the interpretation of the dream was climaxed with the sign of a stone rolling down. One day that king who will head that kingdom must be born on this earth, and these wise men, who were none other than astrologers or stargazers in Christ’s day, were called wise men whose forerunners in this profession sat on the council of Nebuchadnezzar.

 

DANIEL’S INTERPRETATION NOT TAKEN LIGHTLY

 

Believe me, such an interpretation as Daniel had given to Nebuchadnezzar was not something taken lightly! Indeed not! Undoubtedly it went down in the Babylonian records of the kings as one of the greatest phenomenons that ever happened. We must not think for a moment it was something pushed into the background and soon forgotten, else why would 500 years later wise men who studied the stars (astrologers) be led by a star to the very spot where the Christ child was? Those men were watching for something and believe it or not they knew what they were looking for! They were looking for the king (of the Jews); they were looking for one who had been born king to fulfill the latter part of that interpretation of a great dream given to King Nebuchadnezzar more than 500 years before Christ was born, and in the back of their minds still hung that unfilled prophecy of the lad who interpreted the king’s dream way back in the 5th Century B.C. THAT STONE WAS JESUS WHO WAS BORN KING! How often in the scripture was He referred to as the stone! Was He not referred to as the stone the builders rejected; the stone that would grind you to powder, etc. yet He was born of the Jewish race to fulfill that prophecy. Then one day while studying the stars in far off Chaldea these men saw something and here they came to Herod inquiring, where is he that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen his star and have come to worship him! They could just as easily announced, where is he for he is the stone cut out of the mountain without hands of flesh, interpreted for our King by young Daniel, a Jewish lad, and since that time we have been watching and studying the stars to learn the time of this great event! No, it wasn’t a prophecy like some we hear today spoken from God and treated so lightly or soon forgotten. 600 years had gone by since this prophecy was given and Babylonian stargazers were still on the watch for it, and scripture records how their efforts were rewarded.

 

DANIEL MISTAKEN FOR A GOD

 

Scripture informs us how once Daniel finished interpreting Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, old Nebuchadnezzar, who had never bowed before any man, bowed before this lad Daniel. What did the king see in this lad that made him bow at his feet? Never had Nebuchadnezzar been spoken to in such a manner. Sure, he had seen his magicians do their funny tricks which impressed important visitors or dignitaries. He no doubt enjoyed showing off all his cabinet, seeing he had the wisest men in all his realm, feeling I have the finest magicians and when it comes to the stargazers I have the best; the finest scientists in the world, fortune tellers, why, I have the best; soothsayers, the best in the business and they are all in my cabinet. Why their predictions hit every time. Sure, he was proud of his cabinet, of their work in the past and it was only this once things had backfired and the king stood at a point where no one (but the gods) could help him as he was informed by his wise men, NO MAN WOULD BE ABLE TO DO SUCH A THING. THEN WHO AND WHAT WAS DANIEL? NEBUCHADNEZZAR, A GENTILE KING, COULD SEE NO FURTHER THAN THE FLESH OF DANIEL (THE PROPHET) WHO WAS USED IN THE REVEALING. It reminds me so much of the scripture found in Revelation 5, which declares the Lamb of God was the only one who could open the seals, and then for someone to declare Bro. Branham was the Lamb of God simply because in 1963, he was permitted by the Holy Spirit to break into the Seals and reveal for the first time in church history that which was hidden within them, some poor people of this, like Nebuchadnezzar, could see no further than the flesh of a man. Nebuchadnezzar had been told, only the gods could do this, and here stood a young man doing it. Careful beloved, that you don’t allow that roaming spirit of idolatry resting upon Nebuchadnezzar to rest upon you!

 

KING WORSHIPS DANIEL

 

Yes, this had been something God had created Himself to set something else in motion, not to cause anyone to look upon mortal flesh, and because the very secrets of the heart are being revealed make someone think this is a god in flesh standing before them! GOD WILL GIVE HIS GLORY TO NO MAN! Nebuchadnezzar, looking upon this lad standing before him showing absolutely no fear yet giving all due respect to his royal majesty, begins to wilt, and by the time Daniel had finished the interpretation, Nebuchadnezzar had become so flabbergasted and lost all sense of reasoning, he simply falls out of the throne chair flat on his face before Daniel and would have done oblation and sacrifice to Daniel. Why? Simply because Nebuchadnezzar didn’t think he was actually standing before just a mortal man like himself, but instead standing before this new god of whom Daniel had spoken – this God of heaven who had shown kindness to Nebuchadnezzar.

 

READING BETWEEN THE LINES

 

Now, can you READ BETWEEN THE LINES? Can you see what is going on today as well as what went on yesteryear in the courts of Nebuchadnezzar as a man revealed the secrets of the heart to a gentile? Nebuchadnezzar felt this was not a man, but a god which had come down in human form because recall, when he had confronted all the wisest men in Babylon who were unable to help him, he was told only the gods can do what you ask! When he confronted his most gifted soothsayers, astrologers, Chaldeans and magicians, they all had to shake their heads and say, we can in no way interpret this dream until we know what the dream is. ONLY THE GODS CAN DO THIS! But that certainly did not mean God had to come down in human flesh, in the form of Daniel the prophet in order to answer the king! God simply revealed to His servant prophet Daniel, who was no more God than the king himself, the dream, the interpretation and also what had been on the king’s mind that night before he had gone to sleep! Yet the poor flabbergasted, bugeyed king who had never seen anything to compare with this, saw nothing but a young man standing before him, and could in no wise differentiate between the two (MAN AND GOD), thus ending up worshiping Daniel. Does this remind you of anything that is happening today? IT SHOULD!

 

VERSE 46 KING MISTAKES DANIEL THE PROPHET FOR DEITY

 

Verse 46 says, Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face and worshiped Daniel and commanded they should offer an oblation and sweet odours unto him! For now the king is convinced there is no god like the God of heaven who is a God of gods and a Lord of kings and a revealer of secrets, seeing thou hast revealed this secret. The sad part of this story, which is so true even in our day, was this gentile king did not have enough (spiritual) insight to recognize how to differentiate what was God and what was human flesh, and I seriously wonder if we don’t have that same problem with that old spirit still pestering the gentiles today. Nevertheless, you READ BETWEEN THE LINES, man is still man and God is still God, He will never change. The only man ever commanded to be worshiped was the Christ, (Hebrews 1:6). Man can never reason God out; man is still just as carnal in that of his reasoning in his carnal mind as he ever was. Actually, perhaps today even a little more so because man’s mentality has been so molded to fit a modern scientifical age and he probably isn’t as pliable in this day as he would have been in that hour.

 

Don’t do that, exclaimed Daniel to the king. I am a man just like you! Get up off your knees, oh king, worship the God of heaven, not me. I am just his servant the prophet! Beloved, the king never got over this experience of what the God of heaven had done for him in his throne room that day and truly he wanted to do something magnificent for this God of heaven. The next verses, although recorded in the following chapter, will explain to us what Nebuchadnezzar did. No doubt time and again the statement of those wise men echoed in his mind, Only the gods could do this.

 

POSITION OF 3 HEBREWS

 

To get into the story where we must READ BETWEEN THE LINES, we move from Chapter 2 into Chapter 3, for it is what we have learned from Chapter 2 that we can safely say because of this experience of how Nebuchadnezzar met the workings of the God of heaven which creates the situation in Chapter 3. Nebuchadnezzar knows of many gods (plural). However, he is not fully persuaded there is no god like the God of heaven since Daniel has revealed the secrets of his heart, interpreted his dream, etc.! Although he does not know him personally the king says, there is no god like the God of Daniel and to him he has now moved up to first place among the gods, although it may not state it in exactly those words, in essence that is what he is thinking. Blessed be the God of Daniel! True, Nebuchadnezzar didn’t know the first thing about this God (what he looked like or anything) other then the revealed secrets. Nevertheless, this god had accomplished more than all the deities of Babylon of whom he was familiar. He only knew there had to be a god in that young man speaking through him, thus he said blessed be the God of Daniel. The last two verses of Chapter 2 of Daniel must not be ignored as they set the stage for Chapter 3. We see Daniel refused to permit the king to worship him; the king makes Daniel a great man giving him many gifts and exalts him to the position of ruler over all the entire province of Babylon and chief of the governors of all the wise men of Babylon. Daniel, not being one to desire to hog the whole show, requests the king to do something also for Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego. To this the king gladly did. So because of his gratefulness to Daniel, and because he wanted to please Daniel, he set the three Hebrew children over the affairs of the province of Babylon, but Daniel, look where he sat.

 

LOOK WHERE DANIEL SAT – IN THE GATE OF THE KING!

 

Watch closely in Chapter 3 as we see the climax of our story unfold into even a greater event. Chapter 3 is only a continuation of the true drama, for recall this chapter wasn’t written several years later, no, of course not, it is simply a continuation of the same story. It was other men who formed the material into its present form of chapter headings, etc., not Daniel. Daniel is simply writing a continuation of the true drama.

 

NEBUCHADNEZZAR’S IMAGE

 

Approaching Chapter 3 what do we find? Verse 1 tells us Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold whose height was three score cubits, its breadth six cubits and set it up in the plains of Dura, in the province of Babylon. What do you suppose this image was? Dr. Scofield, author of Scofield Bible, and other leading theologians today would have you believe, with no basic scripture foundation whatsoever, this image symbolized united religions. For a while I thought that may be true, after all it had to symbolize something, however I am convinced today the image WAS NOT ANYTHING TO DO WITH UNITED RELIGION because beloved, the key lies in the fact, though Daniel is the author of this book, he is absolutely silent in this one chapter and that is most important.

 

WHY DANIEL IS SILENT IN CHAPTER 3

 

In no part of the setting as terrible as it is, is Daniel anywhere portrayed at all. Why is Daniel’s presence missing in chapter 3, when the king had commanded his entire kingdom to fall upon their face at a certain hour and worship this image? Could you believe Daniel would bow to a golden image or an image of any description when in Chapter 5, under Darius the Mede, at the risk of being fed to a den of lions he refused to worship a heathen god, yet continued to pray three times daily turning toward Jerusalem! Nebuchadnezzar has commanded everyone in his kingdom to worship this image or be cast into a fiery furnace. DID DANIEL WORSHIP THIS IMAGE? Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego would not worship the image and were thrown into the fiery furnace because they refused, but WHAT ABOUT DANIEL, WHY IS HE SILENT IN THIS CHAPTER? WAS HE ON VACATION OR PERHAPS RUNNING AN ERRAND IN SOME FAR DISTANT LAND FOR THE KING OF BABYLON AT THAT HOUR? THE ANSWER IS NO!! Yet all things point to one fact, Daniel for some reason did not have to worship the image! Why of all people in the kingdom would Daniel be excluded and all the others forced to obey?

 

What could Nebuchadnezzar want with such a monstrous golden image as this? We recall from history how religious Nebuchadnezzar was concerning all his other gods; rebuilding the temple of the chief god of the Babylonian province, Marduk (Bali). There is no historical evidence where Nebuchadnezzar ever tried to unite all religions into one, for the scripture declares he had many gods. In olden days when kings and rulers felt they had discovered a new deity, because to them there were so many gods, the god of wind, storm, lightning, war, love, fertility and many, many others, to let an entire empire now there was now another god around, either a cult was formed around it, a temple built in its behalf or a statue or image made to portray this newfound deity. Nebuchadnezzar never got over the great experience he received concerning this god who he felt spoke to him through Daniel, for recall what his wise men had told him; ONLY THE GODS COULD DO WHAT HE WAD DEMANDING. Words of wise men are not pushed aside lightly.

 

NEBUCHADNEZZAR’S ACTIONS REVEAL CHAPTER 3 & 4

 

Here you must read between the lines to actually get the picture of what is going on, one thing is certain, Daniel the top man in the kingdom was not required to worship the image, although all tongues, nations and people were! Soon after, Nebuchadnezzar completed his image, whatever it was, (a gift to his new found god) and the fact when God revealed Himself so mightily in protecting the three Hebrew children in the fiery furnace, and then again in Chapter 4 when God touched the mind of Nebuchadnezzar causing him to wander about as an animal outside his own palace until he recognized the Most High ruleth the kingdom of men and giveth it to whomever He will. In each case we find Nebuchadnezzar writing to his entire province, not asking the people if they could find it in their hearts to honor the God of heaven but commanding them to honor and worship the God of heaven, and if he heard of anyone speaking a word against this God, he would cut them in pieces. Although they wouldn’t be required to do away with all the other gods they had accumulated, they would be required to recognize this god along with all the others. Therefore, I say in Chapter 3 as we READ BETWEEN THE LINES this image Nebuchadnezzar has erected in the plains of Dura is none other than an image to this new god he met in Chapter 2, who reveals secrets and this is the only way Nebuchadnezzar knows of showing appreciation to this god; it is his gift to the gods or in this case to this God. Babylon had no image of him around nor did anyone knew what he looked like. Later we shall discuss what this god in image form looked like as the king didn’t have the slightest idea. After all, how do you portray a god who reveals secrets of the heart? What would you make him resemble?

 

NEBUCHADNEZZAR’S PATTERN TO BUILD IMAGE

 

Nebuchadnezzar had to have some pattern to follow and he used the only thing he could see when the great event occurred, for after all it was Daniel, five verses above before, whom he was on his face worshiping as deity commanding oblation and sweet odours, sacrifices be offered unto the God of Daniel. And since Nebuchadnezzar could not see this God and could not differentiate between Daniel, the flesh man and the God who spoke to his prophet, Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face to worship Daniel the only thing he could see and observe with his naked eye!

 

NEBUCHADNEZZAR MAKES DECREE TO WORSHIP IMAGE (OF DANIEL)

 

Nebuchadnezzar calls in all of his news staff, which today we would refer to as the press, newspapers, telegraph, radio, television and all means of communication to send the word throughout his vast empire to inform everyone at a certain hour they were expected to fall down and worship this image, that is, ALL EXCEPT DANIEL! Verse 2-6 states everyone who would not worship this image at that certain hour upon hearing the orchestra (of Nebuchadnezzar day) sound forth they will be cast into the fiery furnace.

 

Nebuchadnezzar was proud of his achievement and everything had gone well until some jealous, envious, tattletales of his own cabinet came and informed him the 3 Hebrew children he had set over all the province did not worship the image. In other words, spies watched the Hebrew children. Why did they not watch Daniel? Because as it has been stated Daniel was not commanded to worship the image. Of course not, he would not be expected to worship his own image! Recall, it had been Daniel who requested these three Hebrew children be given some position and now the king is embarrassed, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, three head men of the province and affairs of Babylon under Daniel, has failed to worship the golden image and the king must take swift action because a king’s word is law in his province. After the interpretation had been given to the dream etc., Nebuchadnezzar showered Daniel with gifts and told him he was, from that day forward, to sit with him in the gate. You see, what had been done that day drew such an attention to the king he was ready to place Daniel beside himself, wherever he sat, Daniel sat. As a matter of fact, back in the beginning Daniel, according to Chapter 4:8, had been named by Nebuchadnezzar after the name of Nebuchadnezzar’s god. Wherever the king sat, Daniel would sit. Can’t you imagine when visiting dignitaries would come into the throne room to see Nebuchadnezzar, there sat Daniel alongside the king and some of them might say, But sire, who is this who sits in such an exalted position? To this the king might reply, He is my prophet; he reveals secrets no one can reveal; there is none like Daniel in all my kingdom, including all my wise counselors!

 

This was Daniel’s position, but as it has been stated, Daniel when he received this position remembered his three friends who were dedicated to the Most High God, and Daniel realizing and conscious of the fact God had done this only to show forth his mighty wisdom to set something in motion, requests of the king to give some position to his friends whose Babylonian names were Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego. See there is not a selfish bone in Daniel’s body. To this the king says, sure I can use them, and he set the three boys over the affairs of the province of Babylon. Naturally, this made the wise men and different ones who would love to have been exalted to this position themselves very jealous and they greatly envied these 3 young men because of this exalted position. After all, what had they ever done for the king; what wisdom had they ever displayed; why should they be set above the cabinet of the wise men of Babylon? However, at the time there wasn’t much they could do about it, never would they dare let the king know how much they disapproved of his decision, therefore they simply waited and watched every opportunity, biding their time waiting that opportune moment wherein they might accuse these Hebrew children for some disloyal act. Finally that hour arose, the 3 Hebrew children had disobeyed the word of the king, refusing to bow and worship the golden image.

 

KING ACCUSES HEBREW CHILDREN OF DISLOYALTY

 

Chapter 3:12, says certain Chaldeans came before the king and accused the Jews of disloyalty reminding the king, they regard thee not, nor serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou has set up. To this the king was furious to think he had three high officials in his province who would not obey his word. Nebuchadnezzar was embarrassed to think he had placed these three men in such high positions making them his personal governors representing his province in that huge city of Babylon. They had not even graduated from the king’s school, God had maneuvered this. Beloved, this is what I call real diplomacy. Politicians today will do any amount of undermining scheming, crooked dealing to get a man in office. No doubt it was also done in Babylon as it is done in Washington, London, in fact the whole world over. But oh my, here we see God doing certain things to get his men in key positions, how marvelous, he can maneuver and use a slight bit of diplomacy of His own to create certain situations and they say to his man, come on I want you here or there. When men will try a hundred different directions and still can’t make the grade, God simply placed this dream upon Nebuchadnezzar’s heart to life Daniel into that high position, and in turn Daniel requested the king and he exalted the three Hebrew children who had never been trained for such offices, placing them in these key positions telling them, you are my personal governors over all the province of Babylon, you are in the capitol city, it is your jurisdiction; you pass whatever legislation you need to get things done; a new bridge, sewer, road, build it. Want to grow trees in certain areas, it is your job. Sure, that causes jealousy in the cabinet membership. That bunch of Chaldeans, soothsayers, politicians couldn’t wait to get something on the Hebrew children and now they have the thing that is going to finish their administration and get them completely out of the picture, THEY THINK! Furthermore, this should place them in very good grace, informing on these traitors to the wishes of the king.

 

As we continue reading between the lines, Daniel takes up his new position and the three Hebrew children assume theirs, however it won’t be long until such a moral issue enters the picture, the Hebrew children (but not Daniel) are forced to make a grave decision, they will NOT WORSHIP THE IMAGE! We see as we read between the lines Nebuchadnezzar really played this thing up big. Everywhere it received top billing. As his great orchestra came out into the plains of Dura to furnish the music for the worship service, there were three Hebrew children who would not go to the worship service. In the background no doubt we could see these three Hebrew children up in their office praying earnestly before God saying, God you know we can’t do that, your very first commandment teaches us we are not to make any graven image of you in any form and worship it. Surely this image represented a deity, Babylon was full of them statues, idols, temples everywhere, yet the three Hebrew children have not been commanded to worship any of these, it was only for what this new image stood in which all Babylon was being introduced to this new deity. The Hebrew children had made up their minds, whatever the cost, we can’t worship it.

 

In the background you can hear the sound of that great orchestra as the signal is given to sound the music, and as the sound of those notes floated through the air as a signal throughout all the vast territory and province people who came to worship by the hundreds and thousands came into the plains of Dura and down to worship the golden image which definitely had to resemble something, WHAT COULD IT LOOK LIKE? I wasn’t there and you weren’t there, but that image had to resemble something! It wasn’t just a block of gold, it was an image of something that represented the God of Daniel to the king. Meanwhile back at the governor’s offices the three Hebrew children perhaps stared out the windows at times saying, it is bad but I am not going! No, they didn’t bow and they didn’t bend, they stood firm! They didn’t come out and show themselves, yet (probably) unbeknownst to them they were being watched. That old jealous bunch of cabinet members had placed spies in key positions where they could keep a constant surveillance on them. It was a plot!

 

SIMILAR SITUATION

 

We are reminded of another time when Daniel faced the same situation, only this time it was under Darius’ administration and his leaders (Cabinet Members) had watched Daniel so close trying to find something to accuse him before the king, they found him to be so faultless even though they were definitely searching for mistakes, they could fine none! He was even watched when he prayed. Chapter 6:5, tells us these spies said we shall never find any occasion against this Daniel except we find it against him concerning the law of his God, therefore they struck upon the brainstorm to approach Darius (after the Babylonian Empire had fallen) to make a decree for 30 days that if anyone would make any petition to any other god or man save thee, oh, king, he should be cast into the den of lions. You recall how Daniel paid no attention to that decree and the spies watched him knowing exactly what he would do, he continued to pry to his God and he too was reported for this disobedience and was cast into the den of lions. However, back in Chapter 3, here it is Nebuchadnezzar, who is king of Babylon, and he makes a decree concerning a god that does not affect Daniel, it is only the three Hebrew children affected here and being watched as a hawk would watch a chicken. Oh, don’t you see it, can’t you READ BETWEEN THE LINES and know what this image in the plains of Dura was? It is the image of Daniel! The king didn’t know what the God of heaven looked like. When he tried to worship this God, recall he worshiped Daniel! THIS IS AN IMAGE OF THE MAN DANIEL, that is why Daniel isn’t required to worship his own image. That is why Daniel is silent throughout the entire chapter. It wasn’t something that affected Daniel, however it did affect the 3 Hebrew children, they were required to worship the image and no sooner than the worship service was over these spies made their report. Those Chaldeans came straight to the king and reported the matter saying, Oh, king, you know those three Hebrew children you put in positions over all your province, who never worships your gods nor would they go out and obey your command to worship the image, what are you going to do, oh king, this is treason? When you make a decree; that is law, a law you can’t go back on. You said anyone who wouldn’t worship the image would be cast into the fiery furnace and three of your loyal, faithful cabinet members didn’t show up. Your majesty we think they let you down, don’t you?

 

HEBREW CHILDREN THREATENED WITH FURNACE

 

My how this infuriated Nebuchadnezzar because this was most embarrassing, it makes him look bad in the eyes of his old cabinet members. The king immediately sen