What are the seven parables of Matthew 13? Why has Jesus listed them in this order and why are only seven parables listed here? This great chapter in Matthew consists of only seven small parables yet in order to understand them in the light our Lord projected them we must first get the thought he had in mind. These words spoken by our Lord in parable form were spoken as much as 60 years before the Book of Revelation was written or even conceived in the mind of John the Revelator while a prisoner on the Isle of Patmos. Matthew 13 shows the seven church ages in parable form while Revelation Chapters 2 & 3 show the seven church ages in far more detail through visions.
These seven parables are the Lord’s way of informing his disciples the period of time soon to be opened up unto gentile mankind referred to as the kingdom of heaven had already been introduced by John the Baptist when all Judaea came out to hear him and many were baptized including Christ himself where John cried unto Judaea, Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!
THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN—WHAT IS IT?
What is the kingdom of heaven? The kingdom of heaven refers to the dispensation of time which we call the grace age. John the Baptist, through his anointed ministry fulfilling A-Part of Mal. 4:5-6 as clearly shown in Luke 1:17 had introduced the Messiah on the scene and was closing the curtain of time on the Law Dispensation. Soon it would be time to pull the opening curtain and usher in the age of grace which must pass through seven stages as shown by the 7 parables of Matthew 13 as well as Revelations Chapters 2 & 3. John came to announce this transition of time as Than was passing from one era to another in which God would soon be dealing with mankind on altogether a different basis. This basis would be GRACE.
Except for those gentiles who had been proselyted into the Jewish religion under the law age. The gentiles who would soon profit from the age of grace or kingdom of heaven had remained heathen pagans as well as foreigners and strangers to the grace of God, worshipping many gods or idols. That beloved is the way of gentle ancestry was seen in the day of Christ serving idols! The Jews at the hour of Christ, though divided in their belief on the scriptural interpretation of the Mosaic Law, were nevertheless all Mosaic in their belief. What they had done to the teaching of the law reminds us so much of how the gentiles have treated the gospel during this grace age as they too are divided into many sects of carnal ideas unto this very day.
IDENTICAL TO CHURCH AGES
Matthew 13 shows Jesus having separated himself from the vast multitude, who followed him unto the Sea of Galilee, he steps into a nearby boat and pushes out a little way into the sea where he sat down and began to teach the multitude a future truth in parables. It is these parables by the help of the Lord, we wish to discuss how Jesus in a small illustrative way was actually instructing his disciples the age to soon appear in God’s program known as the kingdom of heaven which is a lengthy dispensation of time referred to also as the grace age or church age, actually would undergo or pass through seven major spiritual changes in its earthly journey, exactly as was shown to John, only in far more detail some 60 years later while a prisoner on Patmos where Christ appeared unto him and instructed him to write a warning letter to some seven local churches in Asia Minor (an area better known as Turkey.)
LETTER TO SEVEN CHURCHES
Why was John instructed to write to only seven churches seeing there were many churches in that locality founded by Paul and others? Recall, these seven churches located in Asia Minor were all gentile churches, not Jewish! Furthermore, it is important to note the chronological order not only of the seven parables of Matthew 13 but also of these seven gentile churches recorded in Revelation 2 & 3 (which coincides perfectly with these seven parables). John was instructed to write to only these seven gentile churches because the spirit which overshadowed each of these particular seven local gentile churches would later exemplify. characterize, illustrate and portray in their individual makeup and spiritual attitudes the various (7) church ages in chronological order. This spirit resting on those 7 local churches would definitely portray the seven church ages in succession as first illustrated by Christ in the parables of Matthew 13, then 60 years later unto John in Revelation 2 & 3 as the grace age or the dispensation of time known as the kingdom of heaven would begin to undergo these seven major changes, leading straight into the closing age called Laodicea, the age in which you and I live, called the age of lukewarmness to be spewed out of God’s mouth!!
These seven parables recorded in chronological order, in Matthew 13 is the Lord’s own way of using natural objects and placing within them great spiritual truths concerning the changes soon to transpire in the dispensation of time called the kingdom of heaven or church ages. Though informing the vast multitudes what he did, as always it went far beyond everyone’s understanding and only a few were even interested enough in what he had declared to enquire any further into the truth of the matter. These were his chosen disciples who, once inside the house, asked him the question—Lord, why do you speak to the multitude in parables and the answer he gave was–to fulfill a strange prophecy of Isa. 6:9-10 that hearing they would not understand: seeing they would not perceive; so make their heart fat, their ears heavy and shut their eyes lest at any time they see and hear and believe within their hearts and be converted and I should heal them. Speaking unto them in parable form was giving the multitude the truth in a nutshell, however unto his chosen disciples he said, it is given unto you to know the mysteries pertaining to the kingdom of heaven (the future dispensation called the grace age). These mysteries will definitely reveal the route of the church on its earthly journey before it goes to glory. A journey which I remind you began at Pentecost and goes throughout the entire seven church ages, revealing how the church must pass through seven major spiritual changes, when at this point the church had not even begun.
The first three parables speak of some kind of seed being sown. The fourth speaks of a woman hiding something. The fifth deals with some kind of hidden treasure in a field being discovered. The sixth discusses a merchant finding a pearl of great price for which he had been searching while the seventh parable speaks concerning a huge fisherman’s net being cast Into the sea and out on the end of that seventh parable Christ speaks of a scribe bringing out of his-storehouse or his treasures things new and old. What does it all mean! Here we see our Lord, none other than God in human flesh, who knew only too well what would later transpire throughout the dispensation of the grace age as he takes these great spiritual truths of the future and wrapping them up in parable form, presents them unto the multitude. Parables are natural, earthly illustrations used by Christ to teach a deep spiritual truth. (If I tell you of earthly things and you understand them not, how shall you believe if I tell you of heavenly things, said Jesus.) Only those who are led by the Spirit of God will ever be able to receive the spiritual revelation of hidden truths in any of his parables as those great words of wisdom fell from his lips. The people hearing him speak often remarked, never a man spake like this man. Speaking in parable form was Christ’s way of concealing the truth from the wise and prudent but later revealing it by his Spirit unto spiritual babes and those desiring to learn. Jesus, being the very God of the Old Testament robed in flesh knew all things past. present and future. And definitely these seven parables deal strictly with future days!
SEVEN MAJOR CHANGES
Denominationalism has often tried to use these parables to teach it is the Lord’s way of showing how sinners are to be saved–this is far from true: It is the Lord’s way of informing us how the church which he bought and paid for at Calvary would be so affected by the spirit of ratan and because of that power of ratan which would definitely come against the church during that first age, Christ is showing how the church would begin to lose ground almost im-mediately upon entering her earthly journey and would finally go through seven major changes before being brought completely back to a true word position as she was in the original beginning of her journey. Our intention is not to cover word for word these seven parables but merely to show the profile or over all picture in order you may see how they do pertain in chronological order to the seven church ages and furthermore let you see the growing condition of evil which prevailed in each of the seven church ages and shows how it was prophesied long before it happened in the seven parables.
PARABLE No. 1-SOWING SEED
Parable No. 1 spoken to the multitude was this—Behold a sower went forth to sow seed. (Bear in mind the first three parables deal with sowing seed). The seed sower pictured in Parable 1 is not a modern day farmer or seed sower, for in modern times a person sowing wheat seed would no doubt be sitting astride a huge tractor pulling a grain driller, sowing the seed in long rows within the field. No, in Christ’s day a sower sowing seed did not have a tractor and grain drill, their method of sowing a field of grain was far more simple. First, he plowed the field and worked it down and then in order to sow seed in the field, the man would throw a knapsack over his shoulder and begin hand strewing his seed across the field, slinging his arm as the seed fell in all directions. In Jesus’ parable of the sower sowing the seed, the seed fell in four areas of the field; Some fell by the wayside, some fell on stony ground. some fell among thorns while some fell on good ground. Soon we shall note the four areas of the field which according to the scriptures shows the field to be none other than the world (Matt. 13:38).
WHO IS THIS SOWER?
Who is this sower in Parable No. 1? He is the Son of Man himself, the Lord Jesus Christ! For the gospel of the kingdom began from the lips of the Lord, Heb. 12:2. Christ was the original sower who first sowed the seed which later began the Jewish church at Pentecost in 33 A. D. and later that first gentile apostolic church age around 53 A. D. called Ephesus t Rev. 2:1-6). Yes, our Lord sowed the good seed on good ground (disciples) through his brief 322 years ministry, teaching his disciples the true word of life and closed his earthly ministry as a perfect fleshly man obedient to the father’s will with this prayer recorded in John 17 unto the heavenly Father, the great Eternal Spirit saying, I have given unto them thy word and they have believed, they have received thy word. Keep them now, O Father, through thine own word—those whom thou hast given me that they may be one even as wt are one. As he continued to pray for his chosen disciples whom he had brought in by the good seed sown, he said, neither do I pray for these alone that have already been begotten through the seed word but pray also for them who shall believe on me through their words (John 17:20). And remember. believing Christ’s word and their (apostle’s) word will carry identically the same meaning of thought, although it does not mean to imply the disciples and Christ had to use the same identical nouns, adjectives, verbs, prepositions, etc., in order to say it like he did in order to carry the same line of revelated thought. Certainly not! But what they say in using their own words for vocabulary) will certainly carry the same revelation and same line of thought that Christ Spoke! Truly it was the Lord who started this thing and for 3 1/2 years he sowed good seed in their hearts, telling them how to approach God. who God was, how to worship God as well as how many Gods there were as we hear him saying, I and the Father are one and he that hath seen me hath seen the Father. Nevertheless that carnal group of religious leaders who represented the other three areas of ground upon which seed was sown continually cried out, your words are not true, you are a blasphemer, we know you, you are the illegitimate son born of fornication to Mary and Joseph!
KNAPSACK SWITCHES WITH COMMISSION
In the Great Commission which Christ presented to his disciples on the day of his resurrection, we note it was much like a farmer who had been sowing seed in a large field but had only sown in a small area e and because of the vastness of the field, through the Commission calls in his disciples as he removes the knapsack from his own fleshly a shoulder and says, here it is time for you to take this good seed, divide it among yourselves and continue to sow in the field. That was exactly his meaning as we hear him in the Great Commission saying, Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature, Matt. 28:19-20, making disciples in all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost (which does not mean to baptize them into the names of three distinct persons as the trinity doctrine of 325 A. D. declares but as Acts 2:38 teaches and illustrates, the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of sins. For please do not forget his following statement as he said– teaching them (disciples you made in all nations) to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. Beloved, have you ever wondered what else beside Matt. 28:19 Christ told his disciples that night he gave the Commission? You might be shocked to learn Matthew never recorded everything Jesus told his disciples that eventful night. Mark 16:15-18 states a few of the things Matthew never recorded. Mark, who was not present that night, did not record everything said, nor did Luke who was also absent although he recorded things in Luke 24:46-49 the others did not mention. John concludes with certain things none of the other three recorded (John 20:19-23).
SOWING IN RIGHTFUL ATTITUDE
Placing together from Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John all Jesus said that night as he gave the Commission telling them to teach all disciples, you begin to see a number of things he stated that night as he removed the knapsack from his own shoulder and passed it on to the disciples saying, you take it and continue to sow this true gospel seed into all the world. Sow it unto every creature. Thus we see in the first parable the spiritual authority to sow the true seed is being invested in the first church age as they were given the power in the Commission to declare, publish and spread it into all the world, beginning in Jerusalem (Luke 24:47) (Acts 2:38). Parable No. 1 shows preaching the word or sowing the seed in the rightful attitude, that is, sowing it unto everyone in order to reach the predestinated seed or good ground which brought forth 30, 60, and 100 fold unto God.
SEED SOWN FREELY
Remember the true apostolic seed gospel of eternal life is sown freely among all mankind, for the true application of the word of God is to be sown as though you desired everyone to be saved yet realizing everyone will never be saved. How often do we hear the expression, pray God will send a mighty sweeping revival that the world will be won to Christ. Beloved, the world will never be won to Christ, nevertheless the seed must be sown into all the world. The true revelation of the word will only fall on the ears of the predestinated and they shall bring forth fruit, some 30, some 60 and some 100 fold, as illustrated by the seed which fell on the good ground in the first parable. (Recall the other three areas of ground brought no fruit!) Since no one has any idea who the predestinated are who will receive the revelated word seed into the good ground and bring forth fruit unto God, the seed is to be sown everywhere as we are led by the Spirit. to do so. Our job is to sow but we must be led where to sow in order not to sow in vain. We do not desire to sow seed in the ditches yet as we sow the seed similar to the man with a knapsack on his shoulder, some of the seed will fall by the wayside, on thorns and stony ground. Those disciples picked up the knapsack after their baptism of the Holy Ghost and began to sow freely the same seed wherever the Spirit of Christ which was now within them led them to sow.
SOWN IN 4 AREAS NO.1—WAYSIDE
Illustrating these four areas of the field, Christ said, the gospel seed of truth which fell by the wayside did not accomplish much seeing it represents the man of the world who had the opportunity to hear the truth nevertheless because he has no particular interest in the true seed that is being sown, satan appears and takes away from his memory the very thought of what he has heard. This individual hearer is never concerned if he goes to Hell or not and is that not the general state of many people in the world today as it has always been for centuries? Keep in mind the first parable illustrates the Great Commission being in operation once it was presented to the disciples following the Lord’s resurrection.
The second type of ground mentioned by the Lord the good seed was sown on was stony ground. This represents those who hear the true message and says yes to the preaching of their hour. At first it appears to make them happy nevertheless after the newness wears off, because these have no depth in the word when tribulations and trials come they soon fall away. For a while they rejoice, then comes that season in every believer’s life in which they must enter to be tested in order to prove what they are really made of. They could not pass the test as persecutions and cares of the world soon choked out the word in their life.
NO. 3–AMONG THORNS
Thirdly, some fell among thorns which is much the same as that which fell on stony ground. This ground typifies those who received it with joy and because of the joy they could shout and glorify God. No one could doubt that God had done something for them nevertheless the Bible declares the cares of the world and the pleasures of life later finally choked out the very joy they once had and soon they lose interest and fall by the wayside.
NO. 4—GOOD GROUND
But some seed fell upon good ground. Here beloved is where predestination enters the picture as these are those predestined from the foundation of the world. I repeat these are the only ones the revelated gospel seed benefited at all seeing the other three classes fell by the wayside. Only the seed falling on good ground brought forth any fruit whatsoever. In other words these caught a revelation of what God was doing in their lives and some brought forth 30, 60, and 100 fold which shows the capacity of spiritual growth is not the same in every true believer. No, the spiritual capacity for growth is not the same among all who were considered the good ground for did not the Apostle Paul declare unto the Roman Christians that there are strong and weak who are brethren? You who are spiritually strong, Paul said, restore or forbear the infirmities of the weaker brother. The seed sown on the good ground definitely indicates all true revelated Christians do not have the same spiritual capacity to grasp and understand the true word. Helping the weaker brother or overlooking the weakness of the weaker believer does not mean you condone wrong but merely implies that you, as a stronger believer, conduct yourself in a Christian attitude toward the others (weaker) who are also doing their utmost to walk in the true gospel light as you. This was definitely the spiritual attitude produced by that first church age as shown in Romans. Ephestana ete., and the seed falling on good ground produced the apostolic age of believers who definitely projected the right attitude in their lives.
SEED BENEFITS ONLY PREDESTINATED
Here beloved is where your predestination known from the foundation of the world enters the picture. God definitely knew these. people and this is the group he sought through the word to receive unto himself. However, isn’t it strange Christ did not say in the Commission, go ye into all the world and seek out the predestinated. NO, instead he said sow the gospel seed freely unto all. That beloved ties into the scripture where Peter declared God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Pet. 3:9).
Had he stated in the Commission, go seek out only the predestinated ones or what is referred to in the parable as the good ground, I want you to know all those other groups (3 areas of ground) who never had an opportunity to hear anything would have stood before Almighty God in the great judgment day declaring, you never told us, you never gave us a chance! However he can point a finger back and say OH, but you heard therefore you have no excuse. The seed sown in good ground which brought forth 30, 60 and 100 fold are definitely God’s predestinated seed. (Acts 13:48) They are his warriors, they are the ones he knew before the foundation of the world. Eph. 1:4-Rev. 13:8 It is these whose names were written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life from the foundation of the world, not written in the Book of Life the night they bowed at an altar. NO, God through foreknowledge saw before the foundation of the world these very ones who would accept him as he further saw which of them would bring forth 30. 60 and 100 fold.
WHERE ETERNAL SECURITY FITS
Moreover I might add here as this also was a doctrine in the true gospel seed that was sown in the first age, it is those bringing forth 30,60, and 100 fold who not only are the predestinated of God (Rom. 8:30) but they also are eternally secured, as the scripture teaches—who shall separate the elect or predestined from the Love of Christ (Rom. 8:35-39). Eternal security of the true predestined elect seed of God in itself is not a salvation doctrine. Instead it only reveals the true position of the believer referred to as the good ground. They are eternally secure in him! As a person can only be born once in the natural, they can only be born once into the new life of God, or the spiritual realm. Jesus told Nicodemus, ye must be born again—not again and again and again! It was only these on good ground who from the scriptural standpoint were truly born again.
But what about those others? Were they not born again? They were only in this particular sense–like so many times that which occurs with natural pregnancy. You have miscarriages and abortions before actual birth takes place therefore it never brings forth life. it never brings life Into existence. Is it possible, you may ask, for a man’s name to be taken out of the book of life? All I will say is this, if it ever is you may rest assured under no circumstances will it ever be written in again!! The first parable definitely shows the spiritual identity of that first age called Ephesus where those people on good ground were very spiritual and considerably revelated in the word. It was the spirit of that first age to expose evil. The Spirit of God as he in-structed them, taught them the revelation of the word. In other words, they were a people produced by the seed sown who were quite revelated. That is why we hear the Apostle Paul telling the Ephesian church he had prayed that they might be able to com-prehend with all the saints in other areas (of that first age) what is that breadth, depth, height in the great manifold wisdom of God (Eph. 3:16-19). No beloved God has not saved anyone to leave them as a little babe in Christ to always stumble and stagger around trying to walk. He saved you and gave you the new birth of the Spirit whereby you might grow up in him that you might be complete in him and in Christ Jesus you might be instructed in all things pertaining to Jesus Christ!
EXAMINING SEED PLANTED
For a moment let us examine that revelated word seed sown in the first age to see just what it did consist of and how it differs from denominational seed being sown in the field today. We have already noted this seed sown in the field carried the true doctrine of predestination which simply means God saw the end from the beginning. No. predestination does not mean God made one person for heaven and another for hell as some think. Nor does it mean you have no choice in the matter—you have every choice, but God simply knew what your choice would be long before you made it! Nevertheless he gave everyone a chance knowing all the time who would accept and who would not. Secondly we have noted the predestinated seed or elect is eternally secure in Christ as Jesus said in John 10:27-30, my sheep hear my voice, I know them and they follow me. And I give them eternal life and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hands. My Father which gave them me is greater than all and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hands. I and my Father are one! Recall, we are examining what this seed sown in the field consists of for it is this kind of seed we want sown in our hearts today.
HOLY GHOST FILLED AND LED
Thirdly, the gospel seed sown in the heart of a believer consisted of that believer being filled and led by the Holy Ghost into all truth of the word, Rom. 8:14-17.
Before the gospel began to be sown from Jerusalem as the Lord instructed the disciples, they first went into an upper room and tarried 10 days before receiving the baptism of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost is absolutely a must in every true believer’s life! Not only is the baptism of the Holy Ghost the promise of the Father (Luke 24:49) and the power that was to come (Acts 1:8) but more important, IT IS THE GIFT OF ETERNAL LIFE, Acts 2:38. Furthermore it is the power for service! As Jesus taught in John 16:13 it is also a teaching spirit sent to be a Comforter, keeper and guide as well as the seal of God (Eph. 4:30). The Holy Ghost is everything, we will need in our earthly journey. Thls Holy Spirit will lead us and help us through dark alleys. Furthermore it will take us through deep waters and bring us safely out on the other side. The Comforter, as the Spirit is often called who in reality is the Spirit of Christ, has never started a job it could not finish.
PROPER ATTITUDE TOWARD THE WORD
Our first parable shows the true, devout spiritual makeup of the believer as well as the correct and proper attitude toward the word of God in that first church age called Ephesus, Rev. 2:2-6 as was first set in motion by the ministry and shown through the exam-pleship of Christ that true original sower, the Author and Finisher of our faith, who also gave this same ministry of his to the church. The church took over the same word of revelation spoken by the Lord and carried on his work of sowing seed in the field! As the early church took that knapsack or this true revelated seed of the word of God, once they had been filled with the power of God they are seen on the day of Pentecost sowing that seed beginning in the streets of Jerusalem where the Lord in-structed they should begin.
TONGUES NOT THE SAME
Many people today who have received the Holy Ghost and have spoken with the gift of tongues feel they have received tongues exactly as the disciples did on the day of Pentecost, however a close study of Acts 2 shows they did not. You say the disciples spoke in tongues and I have also, doesn’t that make it the same? ABSOLUTELY NOT! When the 120 went to the upper room they had not been instructed what to look for. Jesus had only instructed them from the Mount of Olives to go into Jerusalem and wait until they had received the promise or be endued with the power from on high. He never told them what to listen for, what to look for or how they would react once the Spirit came. He did not even say how they would feel therefore they were totally ignorant as to what to look for, to expect, to see or to feel. They only knew they were instructed to wait for something and they were to receive something! Nine days they waited and nothing happened but they were in one accord. They had believed by divine revelation everything Jesus had told them. No, they had not understood everything Christ had said, nevertheless what they did not understand they had not been guilty of developing a bunch of carnal ideas over to sit around discussing or trying to figure it out like people do today!!
Recall, prior to his ascension he told them, I have many things to say unto you but you are not able to bear them; however after the Spirit of Truth is come he will lead or guide you into all truth. He will show you things to come and he will take all things which I have already told you that you did not understand and make it known unto you. Nothing happened until the 10th day on the day of Pentecost, however they still waited.
WHAT DAY OF PENTECOST SIGNIFIED
What brought about the natural day of Pentecost? It was a feast day which came 50 days after the Jews had begun gathering their barley harvest, a yearly event called pentecostal feast day. In the spring when the barley crop began to ripen the Jew went first into the field, thrust in the sickle and removed his first sheave of barley tied it into a bundle and presented it unto the high priest for a wave offering unto the Lord the day following the sabbath in the Jewish passover season. Thus they returned and continued to harvest the field. Fifty days after the initial opening of the field, the grain, now harvested and placed in the gar-ner, those same Jews came to Jerusalem for a feast called pentecost, feasting over the fact the harvest of barley was com-pleted. Also at this feast, from the same barley crop, comes two loaves of barley bread that has been beaten and crushed and then into the bread goes a little leaven mingled and mixed into the bread and this is brought, along with vegetables, etc. To Jerusalem they come for a great day of feasting and celebration.
2 LEAVENED LOAVES
Recall, those two loaves of bread mingled with leaven is from the same crop of barley from which 50 days before the high priest had already received a sheave and offered it as the first fruits of the harvest on the day following the sabbath which came during the Jewish passover season! Accor-ding to Lev. 23:10-12 the high priest waved that first bundle of barley representing the first fruits of the harvest he received from the farmer on the morrow following the weekly sabbath which occurred during that particular passover season! Get this, that offering typified the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the following day after the sabbath during that passover season in 33 A. D. who, according to the Apostle Paul, was the first fruits of the resurrection harvest!
WAVING SHEAVE OFFERING FIRST FRUITS
That is exactly where Paul received his revelation recorded in I Cor. 15:20-23 that Christ was the first fruits and afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. Christ we know according to the gospels arose the first day of the week following the sabbath (Luke 24:1, John 20:1) and remained with his disciples 40 days before being taken upon high.
Although the Bible does not state in so many words the disciples tarried ten days before receiving the promise of the Father, we know this feast of pentecost occurred always on the 50th day following the initial opening of the barley fields. Moreover when this day of Pentecost had fully come that the natural Jew should offer those leavened loaves of bread as a sacrifice to the priest to be burned and consumed, it must be remembered it was barley loaves beaten from that same grain crop of which the first bundle was taken to the high priest who offered it as a wave offering unto the Lord the day following the sabbath in that passover season which definitely typifies and proves the resurrection of Christ ‘atm being the first fruits of the resurrection, did rise the day following the sabbath. Furthermore, the fact the two leavened barley loaves for pentecost were to be burned by natural fire shows those disciples in the upper room were also the very fruits or product of the very same word grain of which Jesus himself was. The fact leaven is mingled into the bread shows that old hereditary nature which still lays within these disciples must be dealt with by the fire. On the very day of Pentecost 120 are seen in the upper room. The natural Jew with no revelation as to what is taking place in the upper room comes as usual with his leavened loaves of barley bread to be burned. The priests at the temple are building early morning tiros In preparation to burn all these leavened loaves of barley bread brought unto them. All this typifies what God is about to do in the hearts of the people who are shut up in the upper room who have obeyed his word, who have been beaten out or threshed out by the ministry of Jesus yet still within them is that little bit of the old carnal nature.
MIRACLE OF KNOWN LANGUAGES
They naturally are not aware of what is going on below as thousands are gathering. preparing to eat their natural food and offer the bread mingled with leaven unto the natural fire yet, praise God in the upper room the high priest of glory, has already made intercession for these 120; suddenly from heaven comes a sound as a rushing mighty wind. Yes they heard the Holy Ghost! In fact before they ever felt the Holy Ghost they heard the Holy Ghost coming in filling the whole house wherein they were sitting. Next the Spirit began to divide itself and set over their heads in the form of cloven tongues (or licks) of fire. Therefore they saw the Holy Ghost! As the fires down on the temple grounds were in preparation to consume that natural leavened bread, the fire of the Holy Ghost was already lit in the midst of the 120 consuming their faith, their devotion and their consecration unto God! It was God’s way of accepting their human sacrifice. As that Holy Ghost fire began to burn in each of them, the Bible declares they were all filled with the Holy Ghost and it was only then they began to speak ‘in other tongues as the Spirit gave utterance.
DIFFERENCES IN TONGUES OF ACTS 2 & 1 COR.
May I show you the difference as to what they did and what you and I many times do in speaking in tongues. Below them in the streets were orthodox Jews, gathered from every nation under heaven around the Mediterranean Sea, some 16 different nations were present. Devout Jews of the dispersion who had been born, raised and still lived in these various countries around the Mediterranean Sea but who had returned to Jerusalem to keep the feast of the passover. These Jews had not been there when John the Baptist had been baptizing in Jordan or when Jesus Christ had been on the scene in Jerusalem. These had come from every nation for one purpose only—to celebrate the Feast of Pentecost. As they were in the streets below preparing to offer their leavened loaves of bread, the Holy Ghost in that upper room which had come in and shown itself by fire, filled all them and now began to speak out of them various languages about which they knew nothing. Not one of them had any idea they would do any such thing as this however the Holy Ghost took control of their vocal cords and began to speak through them other (known) languages. Unable to contain themselves any longer as their God was overwhelming them through this anointing and enthusiasm of this thrilling experience, they were literally driven from that upper room into the streets below. God is driving them into the streets below because there are thousands of Jews headed to one place to do one thing. Down the stairs and into the streets they come, no doubt staggering and acting like drunk men.
In that street below are two elements of Jews —one the old Galilean Jew born and raised in this area. Mingled among them is this element of orthodox Jews of other nations around the Mediterranean Sea who knows nothing of what has transpired up to this hour. Coming into the streets is this 120 and the Holy Ghost is causing them to speak In dialects which they as speak In dialects which they as Hebrew speaking Galilean Jews know nothing about! These Jews visiting Jerusalem begin to hear their own dialect spoken by some of these Galilean Jews as they astonishingly ask What is this all about! God is talking directly to me through these Galilean Jews! Remember, the 120 have no idea what they are saying at all. They are aware only they are under some kind of spell, some kind of power and that something is definitely speaking through their vocal cords. And remember what they are saying does not need an interpretation! God is doing it all! God was doing the speaking and he is talking to Jews who have never been preached to before.
Later after this great excitement the old home bunch of Jews give their explanation–THESE ARE SIMPLY DRUNK! It was a remark that set Peter aflame. Did not Peter have the keys to the kingdom? Not only did he have the keys to the kingdom but he is ready to use the knapsack and sow some seed as well. Ceasing to speak the language the Holy Ghost was speaking through him and returning to the old mother tongue, Hebrew, which all the Jews present understood, Peter began to rebuke that home bunch of Jews saying, You men of Judaea and you that dwell at Jerusalem, these are not drunk as ye suppose. seeing it is but the third hour (9 a. m.) of the day, But this is that which the Prophet Joel spoke HEBREW DIALECT Peter rebukes in the old Hebrew dialect, which even today retur-ning Jews in Israel use to com-municate with those returning from other countries—-3000 Jews out of that multitude to whom God had been talking through other gentile languages in which they were born, understood Peter as he quoted Joel, Peter wasn’t scolding them, his scolding lashed out only at those who did not understand, who did not have a revelation. But these 3000 had received the revelation of Christ as God had prepared their hearts. 3000 devout, orthodox Jews convicted and pricked in their heart make their way to Peter declaring, men and brethren what must we do? Peter had truly sown good seed that day, beginning at Jerusalem, he had not forgotten a thing. The eleven standing by were not correcting Peter once he said 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, your children and to as many (gentiles) who are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. Like whipped, sheepish dogs the old home bunch of Jews departed leaving Peter and the disciples with their 3000 devout Jews weeping over the truth. Peter preached a sermon and these received the revelation. The seed had been sown in their hearts and the disciples were ready to baptize them in the name of the Lord Jesus for the remission of their sins. It does not say these 3000 all spoke in tongues but it does show they were baptized correctly. No doubt somewhere after their baptism down the road of life they all received the Holy Ghost. Where? I don’t know, but I believe God gave them the promise of the Holy Ghost as Peter declared he would. Some no doubt spoke in tongues, others may have prophesied; some may have seen visions; some may have had dreams for recall Peter quoting Joel’s prophecy said, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions and upon my servants and handmaidens I will pow out my spirit and they shall prophesy. The Holy Ghost was in them and the church was on the move, as the seed was definitely being sown in the field.
SEED CONTINUES TO BE SOWN
A few days later their first miracle was performed as Peter and John were on their way to the temple to pray and 5000 more were added to the church. It never said whether they spoke in tongues when they received the Holy Ghost but nevertheless since it says 5000 more were added to the mystical body or church we know the Spirit of Christ had definitely baptized them into the body of Christ for Paul says we are all baptized (not by water) by one spirit into one body, the church (1 Cor. 12:13). No, it did not say if they spoke in tongues. Remember this, when God sets down any certain doctrine for everyone to observe you will always see it appearing in every scripture. Notice, when God made a doctrine of water baptism, take it through the book of Acts and see if it isn’t a fact when someone was baptized they were baptized in the name of the Lord, no question about it . That is just how important baptism is to the New Birth! Every convert in the days of the apostles got wet! Although in this 20th Century you have those who don’t care where you ever get baptized or not–now, next year or six years later–it makes no difference to them as they say you just believe the Lord and you are saved. I grant you, many who have been baptized should have stayed out of the water but on the other hand there are many who go to church today supposedly have been converted who never see the water! They go from one extreme to another because they refuse to keep baptism true to the scripture. In Acts 8 Samaria having received the word of God and been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of sins records how Philip was taken into a desert to meet one colored man. It does not in so many words declare Philip preached baptism unto the eunuch of Ethiopia nevertheless when Philip ended his message and the chariot had gone a certain distance down the road after picking Philip up. the man declared there is a hole of water, and what hinders me from being baptized? This shows Philip had said something to this man about getting wet; Philip did not say as some modern evangelist today would forget about being baptized it is not essential–instead he said there is nothing to hinder you if you believe. The colored man said I believe, Because of Philip’s obedience unto the Lord to go into that dry desert God gave him a free air ride out of it.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TWO KINGDOMS: KINGDOM OF GOD
What is the kingdom of God and the kingdom of heaven and how do they apply in our story? Do you realize both the saved and unsaved can be in the kingdom of heaven but only the born again can be in the kingdom of God? Both are mere expressions applying to the same time period. The kingdom of God according to the scripture is not something tangible such as buildings or statues etc., not something you can touch or feel because Rom.14:17 declares, the kingdom of God is not meat and drink, BUT RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE AND JOY IN THE HOLY GHOST. It is not something you can say HERE IT IS OR THERE IT IS but IS SOMETHING WITHIN YOU–IT IS THE COMPLETE NEW BIRTH IN YOU! Christ declared to Nicodemus in John 3, a man cannot enter or see the kingdom of God unless he is born again of God. Therefore it is something spiritual that only a born again person enters into.
However when you have that body of believers who have been born into the kingdom of God, then it begins to take on another dimension called the kingdom of heaven as you now take this body of believers, placing them into the world for service. This action will now begin to take on a geographical position and involve a dispensation of time within which this body will produce and serve its purpose.
2—KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is a dispensation of time allotted to mankind (both wheat and tares) in order to produce their entire fulfillment. Owing that period of time the church takes on an earthly geographical position which will produce tangible things such as buildings, properties etc., a setting at which we are looking as we enter into the second parable.
MEN SLEPT (PAST TENSE)
We must now hurry into the second parable–Matt. 13:24-30 where we again notice the kingdom of heaven is likened unto something. It is likened unto a man who sowed (past tense) good seed in his field but while men slept–a statement typifying the fivefold ministry of Eph. 4:11-12 within the first church age had died off. These gallant men who now slept in the dust of the earth for at least two generations had been gallant guards over the truth and revelation upon which the church had been founded. Watch what happened while men slept, according to the parable. Here we see something disturbing is beginning to take place that had not been brought out in parable No. 1–An enemy had now sown (past tense) seed in the field. Here we note a condition forming within the kingdom of heaven or the church ages that will definitely affect every church age from here out as shown in this parable because what the enemy who is the devil had been allowed to sow here and in the closing of the first age. is allowed to grow until the close of the 7th parable or the 7th church age when the Lord’s messengers would be called upon the scene to deal with the results of the condition which has already developed back in the second church age or parable No. 2 Matt. 13:30). ENEMY SOWS TARE SEED While men slept, Jesus said, the enemy came into the household at night and sowed some tares in the wheatfield. Tares, of course, is imitation wheat. When daylight came or the second church age was in progress called Smyrna. the ministry of the servants of that hour becomes greatly disturbed over what they now see developing in the kingdom of heaven as false believers are springing up from the effects of the spirit of the anti-Christ or mystery of iniquity working or portrayed in the closing of the first age.
Those loyal faithful servants to the word of God who are in this second age approach the householder, meaning the landowner who is the Lord himself, asking him this question—Lord, what is going on? We know when you began the church at Pentecost everyone was a true believer, there were no unbelievers or make believers. We know throughout the first generation of the first age (called Ephesus) there were no unbelievers or make believers in the church! Where on earth did these tares come from? Did you not sow good seed in the field? And his reply is, yes, but concerning these tares–mine enemy hath done this. Remember, the sowing of a false gospel to produce tares or what is called OATIS weeds sometimes mistaken for wheat in the latter part of the first church age has now produced in the church something other than true believers and once it was evident that tares are now in the field, along with the true wheat which has been produced by the true apostolic seed gospel planted all over the Roman Empire during the first age, the ministry of the second church age or second parable asked the Lord this question–DO YOU WANT US TO GO PLUCK UP THE TARES OR IMITATION WHEAT?
Recall in the early part of the first age there had certainly been no such thing as tares sitting in the congregation of the righteous and the true servants of God who were devoted to the revelation of the word knew this. Yet as time drifted on and as the dispensation of the kingdom of heaven drifts into the second church age, the second – parable is revealing you now have tares to contend with. The righteous servants of that age knowing these people have been produced from a false gospel by that agitating spirit of the anti-Christ during the closing of the first age says Lord, do you want us to throw these people out of the church? The Lord says no, I have a plan. Just leave the tares alone and permit them to grow in the field with the wheat. But Lord, the servants said, you did not allow it that way in the first age, why would you permit such a thing in the second age? It simply shows that in parable form the Lord is showing how the spirit of the anti-Christ was already showing itself, rising up with a perverted gospel, sowing false teachers and false revelations which was bringing into the religious circle of the kingdom of heaven carnal minded people.
ALLOWING TO GROW TOGETHER
Beloved, a make believer who does not have the true baptism of the Holy Ghost will be deceived by any devilish carnal revelation that comes along! See even false teachings were promoted in the name of Jesus Christ and they bring it all in and sit down in the fellowship of.the church while the true Spirit of God is in the true born again believer yet never forget, the make believer and unbeliever as well who are the tares sit in the local church having within them only the spirit of the anti-Christ to lead and guide them. That poor individual looks at everything carnal and his aim and sole purpose is–I want to run or ruin this church. Beloved if they never intend to get their hearts right with God we certainly do not need such people in the local church to hold any kind of authority because all we need is the authority of the Holy Ghost! The Lord says to his faithful servants of the second age as shown in the second parable–Let them (true and false believers) now grow together and in the harvest time (Matt. 13:30) I will send forth my angels and they will sever out the tares first and bind them in bundles. Later we will see how this binding of tares in bundles is already taking place.
STILL AGE OF SEED SOWING
Note the second age was still an age of seed sowing as the church was definitely growing larger yet the fact prevails there are now tares growing within it indicating the spirit of the anti-Christ had already succeeded to creep in and was bringing in false teachers who were producing false converts. That is why the Apostle Paul declared to the Thessalonians in the first church age around 54-55 A. D. concerning a spirit already working against the true church although it gained no foothold in that hour nevertheless Paul referred to the spirit as the mystery of iniquity already at work among the true seed. Paul never lived to see the day that this spirit actually weaved itself inside the fellowship of the local church. However after his death, and especially in the latter part of the first age going over into the second, we see this spirit called the I spirit of iniquity fed by the devil had already succeeded to work itself inside the local congregation of the church and had begun to sow its dirty work, setting the stage for Parable No. 3. Remember the seed was sown long before the sprouting period began! And behind the Lord and his apostolic workers who were sowing the true seed, along came satan with his false teachers and began to sow seed also. The Lord told his faithful workers of the second age to let it all grow together until time of harvest when he would send his angels and gather the bad in bundles and burn them but the wheat he would gather into his barn. A brief look at the harvest– The harvest mentioned here is the full results of the condition eventually produced from parable No. 2 as it produced within the kingdom of heaven a crop of true revelated believers and make believers. Thus the end of parable No. 7 will be the fulfillment (harvest) of the condition sown here and allowed to grow down through Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and the Laodicean Church age as the wheat and the tares will not be cut down until maturity, which represents almost 1800 years of growth.
FAN IN HIS HAND–MATT. 3:12
We are now living in the very threshing and separating period of this spiritual condition which began to sprout in Parable No. 2. Both seeds, the true and false, have now come to maturity as we shall see in Parable No. 7. The reapers are here doing their predestinated ordained separating job of preaching the true word and those who come to the full measurement of the word will be wheat. Those who refuse to walk in the light of the gospel will be tares. Often we wonder why people are being influenced by the things going on today. Beloved it is only because the threshing process is in full operation and the reapers are reaping the true seed or wheat. John the Baptist declared the same one (being the Lord) who baptized the believers with the Holy Ghost k at the beginning of the age would be the very one (in spirit form) t who would be standing at the end of the age (In a message) with a fan in his hand, fanning his threshing floor until he has thoroughly purged it. And all dust particles of every nature be blown away or separated by the winnowing process and the good grain is ready to carry into his barn. This beloved is why it is so important in this age that you have the true Holy Ghost, for Christ declared when he the Holy Ghost is come he will guide you (teach and lead you) into all truth. The Holy Ghost age of grace has been a period, first of planting the true seed, secondly, watering it and thirdly bringing it forth unto maturity. Recall, once a seed is finally ready for harvest it will be developed identically to the seed which was first planted in order to produce it. The Holy Ghost stands at the end of the age, cutting the grain down in the harvest placing it on the threshing floor and shaking it up and down. So you see, it is all one great big operation, shaking it around until every carnal man-made idea and opinion is all threshed out.
Parable No. 3— REACTION OF TARE SOWIN( WHAT MUSTARD SEED PRODUCED
In Parable No. 3 we see more fully the development of the role played by the tares who were allowed to grow with the wheat in Parable No. 2. Parable No. 3 will conclude the sowing of the seed in the field or world as it is none other than the third church age called Pergamos in Revelation 2:12-16. Recall it still refers to seed being sown. Again Jesus said, the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a small grain of mustard seed which undoubtedly is the very smallest of all seeds. Here Christ used a seed which is the very smallest in identity, nevertheless when this small seed was planted in the field or world, by the time the third church age comes around 300 A. D., it has sprung forth into a very large tree. Insomuch that Christ says the birds of the heavens and fowls of the air are attracted to come light in its branches. Evangelists have often used this to teach that the birds and fowls in the branches of this great tree which was once a small mustard seed was sinners coming for repentance. No beloved, this is far from sinners coming for repentance. The mustard seed is a little seed which carries within it a germ of life and once it was planted in the ground it grew forth into a tree.
TO ADD TO STRUCTURE
Remember this, anything that is going to add to the structure of that mustard tree must first go down through that same route and come up through the structure of the tree the correct way (Acts 2:38) in order to be an actual part of the tree, seeing we are all baptized into one body (the parable says tree) by one spirit. Though you may set a buzzard on one of the limbs of the tree, that buzzard will never become a part of the tree nor will it ever resemble any pact of m-ve mustard tree–it will always look like a buzzard! What is the Lord saying in this parable as he refers to the birds and fowls lodging in the branches of this once small mustard seed which grew into a large tree. It is the Lord’s way of showing the true church began very small with only 120 but later grew into the stature of a great tree by the third church age and its branches having been spread out all over the Roman Empire were now attracting the fowls of the air to come and light in its branches and lodge there. What could 120 do in a world of the Roman Empire that would possibly grow into such proportion?
Recall on the day of Pentecost the 120 were responsible for the addition of 3000 to that same true revelated seed being sown in the earth, sprouting in the streets of Jerusalem and a few days later 5000 more became a part of it as the Bible says the Lord added daily such as should be saved. It wasn’t long until the true seed was being sown in Samaria, Antioch where God called Paul and sent him to Asia Minor.
The third parable shows although the church was small in its original beginning and was heavily persecuted by the time it grew through the first and second into the third church age she had spread her Christian branches and teachings throughout all the Roman world. By the close of the first age the Apostle Thomas had spread the gospel as far as Madris, India where he was martyred. See how far the tree had spread its branches by the third age.
ROLE OF FOWLS OF AIR
Watch the role of the buzzards and vultures who were attracted to the branches. By the third age the church had grown from its mustard seed size unto a universal, geographical size for the gospel of Christ had been preached all the Way from the coast of India to Russia and the British Empire as well as Africa. Though the church suffered heavy persecution and martyrdom she nevertheless grew into a large tree. Its growth was to be enlarged even more so by Constantine the Roman Emperor, once he had made Christianity a recognized state religion around 315 A. D. Constantine was mainly responsible for causing the birds to come lodge in her branches. No, buzzards do not add anything to the size of the structure of the tree, they only add burdensome or excessive weight: Any old crow or buzzard can light in the branches of the tree and they will never become a part of the tree itself. That is exactly the condition produced in the third church age. By 325 A. D. the growth of the church had reached such a universal size and had accumulated much property. buildings. etc.. as Constantine the great Roman Emperor had taken and embraced it making it a worldwide religion.
Why did Constantine do this? The Roman Empire for quite some time had been going through severe changing conditions and Constantine with his army was headed for Greece to try to bring under control a certain area which had tried to pull away from Roman rule. Constantine had suffered many defeats however as he was on his way to put down this uprising in the early part of the third age, he is suppose to have had a dream or vision of a supernatural light of a cross hanging in the sky where he saw these words–BY THIS THOU SHALT CONQUER OR OVERCOME. He felt the God of the Christians was telling him if he would accept what he believed to be the Christian religion he would conquer and come out on top. The following morning he informed his soldiers to paint a sign of a cross on their shields–this they did. Furthermore, he ordered everyone to accept the Christian religion, not by experience but by name only.
IN NAME ONLY
Beloved, you do not accept Christianity by name only but by experience, it is an experience to an individual. The vision had not been from the Lord but from the devil. Ordering his army into the water, they were baptized into so-called Christianity and painted the sign of the cross upon their shields–a sign which later became the slogan of the Crusaders as well as the Catholic church, the Knights of Columbus. etc. Constantine won this battle and returned to Rome with the thought in his mind that the God of the Christians had favored him. Thus he made a decree that Christianity unifier his rule would never again be persecuted as he allowed Christianity become a state recognized religion within the vast empire. From now on the people could believe the way they wanted to and even the pagans came over and began being friendly with the Christians.
WHAT CONSTANTINE CONTRIBUTED
No, Constantine did not do away with the pagan religions, he merely made Christianity another recognized state religion equal within the Roman Empire. However, because of its growth and influence and outstanding popular fellowship it caused many of the Roman high statesmen and officials to accept Christianity by name but not by birth. Thus began the trend that you would see was mere psychological conversion. Pagan priests also now because of its influence came inside the fellowship to study the teachings of Christianity as was known in that hour. Thus the old buzzard shows the condition of unconverted man who had been doctors, army captains, lawyers, etc., who wanted to come in and find shelter and have a good sociable fellowship. True fellowship in Christianity is not simply coming together like some club or lodge with a lot of nonsense. Nevertheless all this projected a con-ditior as we see according to the third parable we have now reached the end of the sowing of seed. She had now grown into a huge tree.
Yes, pagan priests desired to enter the fellowship and study Christianity. Already in the ranks of Christianity around 325 A. D. there was a priest by the name of Arian who brought in an heretical teaching taking the original Godhead message which the apostles taught and pulled it to a far extreme saying there was absolutely no human nature about Christ—that he was totally divine. Here is what it would sum up to be according to Arian’s teaching. Christ actually had no human feelings yet remember the Bible says Christ was tempted and tested In every wise as you and I. In the flesh of the man who was referred to as Jesus the Christ, he could feel as you and I. He could get hungry because he did have a human nature although it was not the nature of sinful mankind seeing Christ was a sinless, perfect human being. Nevertheless this teaching of Arian became a con-siderable squabble among the great bishops of that time and when Constantine made Christianity a state recognized religion, this began causing those big carnal fleshly minded statesmen who are the vultures and buzzards in the parables to come light in the branches of the church. Why? Because the old pagan political system was crumbling and as the storms of time began blowing against the Roman Empire these Roman statesmen began to look for something whereby they might receive popular recognition within.
Moreover this began to cause the political statesmen of Rome who had always looked toward Rome for leadership to now begin more and more to look toward the bishop of Rome who was fast gaining control over universal Christianity by pulling strings. When that condition set in involving all these political dignitaries you also have a condition developing among the bishops. Having lost their vision of the Great Commission and the vision of the true church, they enter into a ratrace of popular recognition among universal Christianity and it is this kind of condition that sets the stage for the fourth parable.
PARABLE No. 4–Woman Hiding Leaven
Note, the Lord no longer refers to it as seed growing because he knows once the church passes out of that period of time known as the kingdom of heaven and into the fourth age she takes on an entirely different identity. The fourth parable, Jesus says, Matt. 13:33. is like unto a woman who took leaven and hid it in three measures of meal until the whole thing was leavened. This is the Lord’s way of saying the woman would be none other than the Roman Catholic Church. The leaven she mixed would be her creeds, doctrines and dogmas which she would substitute in the place of the three measures of meal from which you normally make bread. Therefore the bread is the word of God, nevertheless when the woman mixed her leaven in it and made it rise above proportion it would become a bread of death and it was this bread she fed to Europe throughout the Dark Ages which brought spiritual death and the world died! Christianity lost its true apostolic Bible identity.
WHAT IS LEAVEN?
What is leaven? Anything that changes the overall structure in order to make it rise above its natural proportion. Whenever the Roman Catholic Church is referred to in the scripture it is referred to in the female species. Thus the 4th Church Age called Thyatira in Revelation 2 was Roman Catholicism carrying the church off into the Dark Ages.
WHAT IS MEAL?
But why the three measures of meal spoken of in the parable? Because the Bible teaches there are three definite works of grace although the gospels as taught by the apostles was not taught on an installment plan–it was all three wrapped up into one and it took all three measures of grace to make one true plan of salvation. Now let us examine the leaven the woman placed in the three measures of meal causing it to rise above proportion. We see her begin to leaven out “the just shall live by faith” and instruct her followers in dogmas and creeds that faith in the holy church and the bishop of Rome was right. In 325 A. D. she took out the doctrine of ONE GOD and placed in the doctrine of THE TRINITY – three Gods to make it more pleasing unto the pagans of that hour for when you declare God is three separate persons, distinct from each other you make him three separate Gods.
In 325 A. D. in order to correct that error in Arianism, Constantine called the bishops of universal Christianity to Nicea to settle this godhead matter. Did you know it was the Emperor Constantine who sat at the head of that conference table as he is referred to as the bishop of bishops; something neither he Apostle Paul or Peter would have ever catered to, Nevertheless there he sat with the bishops discussing this error and because they now have this pagan influence of ancient Rome many of these new ministers and bishops recently converted to Christianity through a psychological means and not by the new birth or divine experience from God, here they sat and pulled that doctrine of the godhead away from the extreme of Arianism however they did not stop by bringing it back into the true scriptural word position instead they pulled it all the way to the other side of the road to fit that old. pagan spirit of Rome. The one God which the apostles taught was placed on this conference table stripped and made to be a God of three separate and distinct persons. The only possible scripture they could use to make it appear to be three persons was Matt. 28:19. Their interpretation fits perfectly the carnal mind although it can never fit the mind which has the Holy Ghost and the true revelation.
TRINITY DOCTRINE BEGINS
It is interesting to note according to Collier’s New Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, Pg. 3 to mention only one among many that discusses trinity theory, it says the word TRINITY is not found in the scripture and is said to be first used by Theophilus, Bishop of Antioch in the 2nd Century.
CATHOLIC WRITER DECLARES NO SCRIPTURAL FOUNDATION FOR TRINITY
Mr. Graham Greene, writing in Life Magazine, Oct. 30, 1950, Vol. 29, No. 18–Pg. 51, defending the Roman Catholic Church dogma–the Assumption of Mary—says our opponents sometimes claim that no belief should be held dogmatically . which is not explicitly stated in scripture but the Protestant churches (says Mr. Greene) have themselves accepted such dogma as THE TRINITY for which there is no such precise (exact, definite or positive) authority (to be found) in the gospels! Therefore contrary to what you may have been taught. This is exactly where the trinity doctrine began — more than 200 years after the death of the last apostle. The day professing Christianity who professed to have the Holy Ghost said yes to a doctrine of trinitarianism that was the day the Holy Ghost began taking its flight: From that day forth with every successive generation, though. some people may have had various experiences with the Holy Ghost, yet there is no one you could actually put your hand on and declare they had the Holy Ghost in its fullness. I want you to know, had they had the Holy Spirit in its fullness or had the revelatory part of the Spirit it would have rebelled against that teaching!
BEWARE–WOMAN AT WORK
Therefore watch this woman with her leaven in the parable. Out went the ONE GOD, in came the THREE PERSONS. It wasn’t long until about 500 A. D. this woman really began to show herself as she continued to mix her creeds, etc.. in the meal. The TRINITY was substituted. Next came the supreme authority of the bishop at Rome. There began to be a squabble between the bishop of Constantinople and the bishop of Rome. They had already taken the authority of the bishops away from Cairo, Jerusalem and Antioch in Syria, therefore Rome and Constantinople being the two leading outposts of Christianity are seen shuffling for superiority throughout universal Christianity. Such shuffling eventually led to a split between these two bishops I seats in the 8th century. The devil’s theory was, if the political world was to be ruled in that hour from Rome, why not let the church or the spiritual side also be ruled from Rome by the bishop. Rome is the devil’s seat, it is his city. From this city he will establish a universal teaching and use the name of Jesus Christ to propagate his false doctrine. Within its teaching through this woman he is going to substitute or leaven in every pagan creed as he takes away the word of God! Making her gospel more acceptable to the pagans is Rome’s way to make more Christians or win nations to Christ. It is her fulfillment of the scripture in making disciples of all nations but it is not the application of the gospel to make disciples of all nations. She leavened out true water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ and inserted the leaven of sprinkling, titles, etc. She did away with true justification by faith and inserted faith in the Roman Church saying there is no salvation outside the Roman Church. She takes out the next measure of meal—sanctification—and leavens it with indulgences and penances. The woman leavens out the baptism of the Holy Ghost and substitutes Confirmation and the Mass and many other things which carries no salvation. She leavened and leavened and mixed and mixed until the entire thing was polluted! Then she has what kind of bread? The bread of the Roman Catholic Church and here she feeds the world with it for 1000 years called the Dark Ages. It is not the bread of life, it is the bread of death. The three measures of meal was the bread of life! It was the staple food for all mankind. It has always been known as the stable food for the human race as the word of God is the Bread of life. Did not Jews tell Satan in the wilderness, man should not.live by bread alone but by every Word that proceeds out of the mouth of God!
BLESSED COUNTRIES AND WHY
This is what she fed to the world and the world died. No wonder they call it the Dark Ages. Nothing in the political nor military world prospered during that time. She entered that period riding an oxcart and came out 1000 years later still riding an oxcart. History proves any country that ever accepted the gospel reverencing it-though the nation as a whole may not have accepted it but would allow others to live and practice true Christianity-has always been blessed bountifully. That is why the U. S. has been blessed and preserved through the ages, she has upheld the standard of Christianity though the nation as a whole was never converted to Christ. She as a nation reverenced and honored those who did believe in the truth and allowed them to enjoy it. While the woman fed the world her bread heavily leavened, the world did not prosper. Not one major invention was discovered during that period! Did you realize the new world was discovered around the time Europe was coming out of the long dark ages near the 15th century? North and South America are both rich in vast resources nevertheless notice who populated South America. The Spaniards brought Catholicism to that continent. Who dominated North America? The Protestants from Europe coming out of the Reformation. North America survived because she placed in her constitution provisions to allow the gospel to go forth. Thus she has been blessed militarily, economically and spiritually. Yet look at poor South America— ever since its discovery it has faced poverty with poor ignorant peasants as black robed priests stood on the shore lines deceiving those poor nations. This mother religion and those Spaniards had kept the people in such spiritual darkness, they not only have suffered spiritually but economically and militarily! However we note as North America begins to backslide and return to the state of apostasy, like other nations of the past, she reaches back embracing the woman’s bread and begins to say, Come on and let us all unite with them, which merely goes to show Romanism still feeds the world with the bread of death she prepared back in the 4th parable, as well as the 4th church age!
KILL CHILDREN WITH DEATH
We hear the Lord say in Rev. 2:21-24. speaking of that woman called Jezebel who called herself a prophetess of whom God accused of having taught and seduced his servants to commit fornication and eat things sacrificed unto idols—I gave her space to repent of her fornication but she repented not. Behold I will cast her and all them that commit adultery with her in a bed in the great tribulation except they repent of their deeds, and I will kill her children with death. And all the churches shall know I am he which searches the reins and hearts, etc…. Yes that part of the world which accepted Romanism accepted death, that part of the world that embraced it has remained backward with very little advancements even in a modern age! However that part of the world who have accepted truth through the Reformation hour has prospered. And as we see the entire thing now going into apostasy, God says the hour has come to judge it!
Parable No. 5-A SEARCH IS ON
Watch closely the Fifth Parable coming into focus— It is here we begin to see the Reformation or the Sardis Church Age, Rev. 3:1-6, first in parable form as we hear Jesus declaring in Matt. 13:44, Again the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a treasure hid in a field (world). That which, when a man has found, he hideth and for joy therefore goeth and selleth all he has and buyeth that field. Recall, around 1500 A. D. the search for treasure began which had been long lost or done away through Parable No. 4. In this particular field of which Jesus speaks is great and precious nuggets of treasure waiting to be discovered–having been lost for many hundreds of years.
What did Jesus mean by this parable? He speaks of the beginning of the Reformation–the beginning of Protestantism. if the treasure was hid in a field and a man found it, this showed he had been searching and looking for something. He knew he would find gold for every once in a while he would pick up a nugget men in the past had discovered. Remember the story of the great California gold rush. Multitudes began to feel in their hearts that going west would bring them much prosperity as they would surely strike it rich. Beloved after the world had gone through the long dark ages the time had come that someone begin to get hungry enough for something that had some real value to it-that he along with others began looking for the gospel of the Lord Jesus and Praise God, they found what they were looking for! The man Jesus speaks of signifies Martin Luther. Luther, realizing there must be something of far more value than what he had, began searching the field. Having studied in monasteries across Europe trying to find more peace with God, Luther was in the process of climbing stairs covered with broken glass that cut his flesh. striving to reach the top of the stairs to kiss the statue of a woman-it was there he heard a voice say, Martin Luther, the JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH. In His soul he knew the treasure he had discovered was something that had been lost a considerable time. For a while he kept this truth a secret while he continued his search. At last he came back and sold everything he had ever learned to buy that field of FAITH IN GOD. See that was the last thing man lost in the dark ages–his total faith In God as his faith went to a church system and the head of her religion. Note, it is the first thing discovered in the field as the Reformation in 1500 A. D. began to bloom. Faith in God is the first things you need to begin your walk with God and his plan of salvation. Luther, after hearing the voice of God in his soul as he had almost reached the top of the steps to kiss the statue, was like an old prospector who had found a large nugget of gold of great value. He returned home and studied it out and made a Bill of Sale. He told no one of his discovery at first but wrote his 95 thesis and brought them to the cathedral at Whit-tenburg, Germany, tacked them on the front door and told everyone to come take a look at them. This, said he, is what I have against this church system!
Luther, now with his new treasure, sold all his religious possessions and returned to the field to dig for more nuggets of the Lord. No longer was his faith in the pope of Rome. And note beloved, as he returned to the field of FAITH he invites others to come into the field where the treasure was hid and dig to be justified also. Luther had found what many had been searching for–FAITH IN GOD APART FROM ANY SYSTEM OR RELIGIOUS HEAD. Now being delivered from the power of the Roman church and freedom from bondage, Luther leads the way in the great Reformation. Beloved it brought them out in droves to gather around the new found treasure.
DISCOVERY OF NEW WORLD
About this time while theologians were searching for a way out of the power of darkness, there was another man by the name of Columbus, also a Roman Catholic, who had the idea the world was round and was trying to discover a route to the Indies when he ac-cidently discovered a new world. As Martin Luther preached the Reformation God had already allowed a new world to be discovered in which he would bring his church for the growth of the Reformation, steering it away from the clutches of Rome’s power. Man would come to this new world where he could live and worship God in freedom according to the dictates of his own heart. This faith in God set forth a revolution In Europe which did not stop until the days Napoleon would personally dethrone the pope and it was written by many of the Catholic bishops of France that ‘the papacy is dead.” May I say not one finger was lifted to restore it, though in this hour we see the deadly wound of the papacy healed. (Rev. 13:3)
SACRIFICE WORTH IT
True, the European people coming to this new country had many obstacles and battles to fight in order to carve out a new world from the wilderness, nevertheless every sacrifice paid for the freedom of religion was far better in this country than being a slave to a religious system which controlled Europe. This was definitely Parable 5 and Martin Luther was the messenger to the Sardis Age. Many men such as Calvin, who discovered the gold nugget of the eternal security of the true believer, John Knox rediscovered the teaching of predestination–these men and others worked feverishly in the gold field in the search for more treasure-treasure which had been lost for ages was now being rediscovered! The Reformation was a period of time God was using to restore his truth back to the church.
PARABLE No. 6-MERCHANT FINDS PEARL WESLEY, THE MAN Parable 6
–According to Matt. 13:45-46 represents none other than the sixth church age called the Philadelphia Age, Rev.3:7-13. Jesus in his parable stated the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a merchant man, showing this man was already in the business. In other words, being a merchant he already had something to sell however while he was selling and trading his eyes fell upon a far better pearl. A pearl, you know, is something white, pure and clean.
CLEAN HOLY MESSAGE
Here was something discovered very clean, WHAT WAS IT? This was John Wesley out of the Church of England (a half sister to the Romann Church). John Wesley who is the messenger to the Philadelphia Church Age, like Martin Luther was also searching (or something of great value. He had descended from a long line of ministers, the I5th child out of a family of 18 children. He studied in the great schools of theology in which his forefathers had studied. Desiring to be a missionary and evangelize the American Indians in Georgia in the new world he came to America only to be discouraged because the American Indian would not accept him or his message. Returning to England, disappointed and discouraged he said. I went to America to convert the Indian and I returned to England wondering who will convert me. John definitely thought he had something to sell but the Indian did not want what he had.
Back in England John and his brother Charles, along with George Whitfield one night joined a little group of people who began to pray together at a place called Aldersgate. During the service Wesley heard a document read on a subject Martin Luther had written. taken from Romans and he felt the strangest but warmest feeling come over him and there asked God to forgive him of his sins as he knew everything was alright between him and God. God had given John Wesley a revelation as well as the baptism of the Holy Ghost or shall we say. God’s measure of the Spirit for that hour. Out of that experience John Wesley began to study the scriptures and carefully compile them together. He received the revelation and it is written in the old Methodist discipline which states we believe the just shall live by faith (Martin Luther’s revelation) however we believe also and teach that without peace and holiness which is sanctification no man shall see the Lord. On horseback he rode throughout the coal mine areas of England as well as the mountains to preach his new revelation and truly brought great revival in an hour of need. Asbury and others, followers of Wesley, came to the new world and up and down the Allegheny Mountains the teachings of John Wesley was taken clear to the outskirts of Henderson. N.C. where there is to this day an old sign indicating how Asbury rode muleback on rainy days. snow etc. to carry this truth.
PUREST MESSAGE OF HOUR
John Wesley’s sanctification. holy living got rid of man’s bad temper and cleaned up his life–a thing not yet taught in the teachings of Luther nor Calvin or Knox. But John Wesley who found the pearl of great price, already a merchant according to the parable, taught this great revelation which he had discovered. From this came what is known as the Philadelphia Church Age or the age of brotherly love–an age where a man could get his temper under control and his life cleaned up as they began to sit down and discipline their lives and dedicate their lives unto God. living separate and apart from the things of the world—something not taught until this hour! Be ye not conformed to this world but be ye transformed was the cry of John Wesley. And those who followed Wesley’s teaching became known as Methodist. God anointed Wesley to preach to the roughest type of people as he preached on street corners and anywhere he could get a crowd to listen. One of the Methodist primers records an incident which happened in a coal mining town., One evening while holding a street service, a gang of roughnecks riding horses came through breaking up his meeting. As Wesley was preaching one of these roughnecks came before him struck him over the head and knocked him to his knees as the blood ran from his face – Wesley continued to preach. The scene was so moving the ringleader of the group came before Wesley and yielded his heart to God. Through this one man accepting the saviour the entire gang asked God to forgive their sins. History records how wherever Wesley preached people were deeply convicted of sin.
WORLD HIS PARISH
Having a longing to return to the Church of England where his father, now dead, had pastored, Wesley asked the stiff, starchy pastor to allow him to address the congregation that morning. He was refused because the Church of England did not want what Wesley was selling. Wesley’s pearl of Great price became known as the doctrine of sanctification, con-secration, dedication unto God as this was the message of the hour. Wesley had sold all for this pearl. Being rejected by the Church of England did not make him lose confidence in his message, instead he went to the cemetery and stood on the grave of his father and said—the world shall be my parish.
Parable No. 7-NET CAST INTO THE SEA BRINGS GREAT SEPARATION
Now for the final parable, 7 which coincides with the seventh church age called Laodicea. Matt.13:47-52 is by far the lengthiest of the seven parables and it speaks mainly of a net cast into the sea and gathered of every kind which when it was full was drawn to shore and the fishermen sat down and gathered the good into vessels and cast the bad away. What is Christ saying as he delves into the seventh and final church age in parable form. Remember how the second parable overlaps into the seventh as it will be a consummation or climax of the very thing illustrated in Parable 2 concerning the separation of the tares from the wheat–the same as in this parable with the separation of the fish from the crawfish, turtles, lizards and other things rejected and thrown back into the sea that found its way into the net once the gospel net was full and drawn to the shore where the separation took place. Jesus said likewise shall it be at the end of this age, he shall send his angels (messengers) and gather out of his kingdom all things that offend as he promised his servants in Parable 2 he would do–then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun.
TONGUES A SIGN TO UNBELIEVER
At the turn of the 20th Century with the birth of the Laodicean Church Age the old Methodist revival fires began to simmer and die. The huge Methodist movement had already split in many groups yet all these splits were accepting the same revelation given to Wesley, his pearl of great price, sanctification and clean living, holiness of life etc. Nevertheless, they began to squabble over their different teachings concerning sanctification. While the sincere honest hearted Methodist, Baptist, etc., around the world at the turn of the century were crying out for more of God, around 1903 and even earlier God had begun to send another great move or wave of his spirit into his church and people now in great numbers began to speak in other tongues–a thing which according to church history could be traced in practically every age, though they always seemed to die away. In every hour there would be bands of people, whether because of heavy religious persecution or because of true devotion in their lives, these people would seem to have experiences of speaking in tongues. Since tongues is a gift of the Holy Spirit it simply goes to prove no matter how black and dark spiritually any age of the past became stooped in paganism the Holy Ghost never completely died out of that age! Tongues have always been for a sign. I Cor.14:22, to the unbeliever as God showed forth on the day of Pentecost according to Paul from verse 21 when he stated in the law it is written (Isa. 28:11-12 (with men of other tongues and other lips will I speak unto this (Jewish) people and yet for all that will they not hear me saith the Lord. Therefore Paul says, tongues are for a sign to them who believe not. Praise God, 3000 did believe on the day of Pentecost.
TONGUES NOT EVIDENCE
Tongues and prophecy are signs. Jesus said these signs shall follow them that believe, Mark 16:17-18, however when you begin to declare tongues are more than a sign of the Holy Ghost, that it has become an evidence doctrine, that no one has received the Holy Ghost unless smosist they have spoken in tongues you are dangerously writing with bold. letters into the scripture something the word of God has not said! The Apostle Paul asked the question in I Cor.12:30 if all did speak in tongues, if all did prophesy and if all did interpret and the answer was NO. Jesus said, by this shall all men know you are my disciples when you have love one for another. Remember that love of which he spoke was not “fileo love” but “goppo love” because if a man has the love of God in his heart, placed there by the Holy Ghost, he definitely first had to believe every word of Christ. He had to love the word. Therefore he will believe every word of God. Furthermore he will believe others who love Christ with all their heart have also been begotten by God by the same spirit.
AGE OPENS WITH GIFT OPERATING
Hence around 1900, beginning in the Laodicean Church Age, we see the age open with a great move of the Holy Ghost placing emphasis upon spiritual gifts, tongues, divine healing, prophecy and others. Rapidly the Holy Ghost revival moved out and spread over the earth, however, sad to say some people (not God) made tongues not a sign of the Holy Ghost but an initial evidence doctrine! What else does Paul say concerning tongues? I Cor. 13:1 –Though I speak with the tongues of men and angels and have not love. I am become as a sounding brass and tinkling cymbal. Which goes to show Paul would have spoken against the “initial evidence doctrine” of the 20th Century when he told the Corinthian Church to desire spiritual gifts and covet to do all these things yet let it be channeled through love–without love you might as well forget the rest of it! As the Holy Ghost moves out to prove unto the Pentecostal people that receiving of the Holy Ghost could not be completely based upon tongues which they now called the “initial evidence” doctrine, God is about to test their doctrine with more truth from the word of God. Just as the Holy Ghost is a spirit who can speak through tongues, never forget the Holy Ghost is also the spirit who can illuminate your understanding as well – because it is a revelating spirit. Tongues interpretations and prophecy etc.. are expressions from the power angle of the Holy Ghost. But what about that revelatory angle of the Holy Spirit? That beloved is the teaching part of the Holy Ghost which is what Jesus meant when he said after the Spirit of truth is come he will teach you all things. secondly he will show you things to come and thirdly he will bring to your remembrance all things whatsoever I have told you. True, the Holy Ghost is everything! Therefore watch closely what the Holy Ghost did around 1912-13 as Pentecost had organized around their “initial evidence” doctrine, declaring all must speak in tongues as it is the only evidence of having the Holy Ghost when Paul taught it was only a sign to the unbeliever. We see today they have absolutely created a generation of ecclesiastical pentecostal believers to whom you can not teach anything! I was baptized into the Church of Christ and later became Methodist. One thing for sure I did not want anything to do with those tongues. However, shortly before I received the baptism one night the Lord showed me what he was about to lead me into. A few weeks later in a certain revival I found myself flat on my back under the power of the Holy Ghost, receiving the baptism of the Spirit. No, I did not speak in tongues but I knew I had the Holy Ghost. Months later God gave me tongues. as he slew me again under his power in another meeting and from my stomach I felt like there was an avalanche beginning to commence up through my throat and suddenly I felt my mouth fly open as words unbeknownst to me came pouring out for approximately 15 minutes.
When this pentecostal revival, beginning around 1903-09 moves out, time has come for God to confront it with a trial —MORE OF THE WORD OF GOD. Remember how the pentecostal movements eventually voted against and kicked out the revelation of the ONE GOD. This was the great test thrown against pentecost. Around 1913 God began to speak to pen-tecostal men concerning the ONE GOD and the Baptism IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS as taught in Acts 2:38. Great discussions over this subject soon followed. Confusion, disagreements, and quarrels among brothers who were all supposed to be filled with the Holy Ghost and had spoken in other tongues came about. Keep it quiet, don’t discuss it! Nevertheless, God would awaken ministers in the night declaring, will you take my name, as he began showing from scripture this doctrine of three separate persons in the godhead or trinity was not scriptural. Many ministers testified to having dreams or visions pertaining to scriptures and as they conversed with each other during this period the main question was, what has God shown you about this?
NEW REVELATION TESTS DOCTRINE
The revelation of ONE GOD was restored back among the tongue speaking christians called trinity pentecostals, who as you recall had already set up a doctrine that tongues would be the only way you might know a person had received the Holy Ghost. But, oh, had they all actually received the Holy Ghost although they had spoken in tongues? Here was the test! As God presented than truth out of the Word had they all truly had the baptism of the Holy Ghost they should have had no difficulty in accepting this new truth now causing so much confusion among their movement. Remember the Holy Ghost will never speak against his word but instead will lead us into all truth concerning his word. Therefore God is about to take their own doctrine and make liars of them. Wasn’t it strange, here sat one person speaking in tongues who would not leave his trinity doctrine and here sat another to whom God was speaking and who also had spoken in tongues but who had the revelation on the baptism in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins. Since that is definitely truth out of the word of God as taught by the apostles yet a teaching destroyed by the woman who mixed the leaven in the three measures of meal in Parable 9, I would have to say the individual with the true revelation had more of the Holy Ghost than the one who has no revelation concerning the truth! The Holy Ghost is a teaching spirit (Jn. 16:13) therefore when he began to teach ONE GOD and began to restore this truth back concerning Acts 2:38 and the baptism in the name of Jesus Christ. it produced a wide split within Pentecost. Out of that came your various Pentecostal denominations, both Oneness and Trinity. Nevertheless the Oneness message moved out gaining ground. It also took on certain extremes and dogmatic positions, nevertheless a great revelation had been revealed. Little did they realize their revelation and experience could not possibly be the final truth restored before Christ returned, as they were suggesting. Little did they realize (as well as all others) there was something still yet to come within this final age which would severely test every man’s experience as every man’s doctrine would soon be brought into accountability to this word of truth.
PROPHET COMES WITH MESSAGE
Pentecost, both Oneness and Trinity. though bitterly battling each other, managed to still grow by leaps and bounds. Now watch we enter that period of time following World War 2 which is ready to fulfill Parable 7 as God brings a little man upon the face of the earth and places a most unusual gift in his life. First, it was merely praying for the sick. God had given William Marrion Branham of Jeffersonville, Indiana. a prophet sent from God, this unusual ministry to introduce him unto the divided pentecostal world, unto a people who truly believed in the same holy Ghost he did. In a baptism service held at the Ohio River in 1933, while baptizing his 17th convert a strange phenomenon occurred, the voice of God told this man in the presence of hundreds in an audible voice that as John the Baptist’s ministry had forerun the first coming of Jesus Christ, you will take a message that will forerun the second coming! People are still alive today who witnessed that eventful scene!
NET THROWN OUT OVER THE MASSES
As this little man of God with his unusual gift ministry was in-troduced unto the world, around 1946 following the close of World War 2, an unusual wave of divine healing spread across the earth. Therefore watch the gospel net that is about to be thrown out recorded in this seventh and final parable as the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a gospel net cast into the seas. God, from within the pentecostal ranks though divided between Trinity and Oneness, mainly under the influence of this one man, began to send a mighty move of his spirit through the earth. God was now placing heavy emphasis upon salvation, divine healing and receiving the baptism of the Holy Ghost as never before. Seemingly there were not enough pentecostal people to believe and propagate it therefore God reached into the Methodist as well as other denominations taking out pastors and their families, causing their sick to be miraculously healed and giving them the baptism of the Holy Ghost in so much those within their denominational churches as they began to preach the baptism of the Holy’ Ghost, divine healing etc., they were forced to leave their movements because of their revelation!
WORLDWIDE GOSPEL NET
Truly it was an era of time (10 years) when the largest tents in the world were brought into the gospel arena to house the throngs who crowded into these meetings. Up until around 1955-56, ap-proximately 10 years, God through this little prophet’s ministry had. inspired men who spread a gospel net over the earth. Many evangelists who later entered this realm of the miraculous power of God never saw it demonstrated in such magnitude as they did in the ministry of William Branham. As never before men and women were now privileged to see the power of God in operation. Many of us today are products of the gospel net being spread across the earth in that hour. Around the world different men began to preach various phases of the gospel and in an overall sense it had definitely formed a net. Therefore the very ones who cast the net out are bringing it in. Each man’s message had a definite effect on the lives of the subjects in the net. The consummation of the age had come, everything had been sowed: It was now the how of separation—the hour of reaping. Notice if you will how Christ emphasized that once the net was full it would definitely be brought in with its mighty catch. The good fish Christ declared, were gathered into vessels while the bad ones were cast away. This is exactly what happened, for once that great Gospel net was cast into the earth and people were drawn in multitudes to the attention of God through salvation, divine healing and baptism of the Holy Ghost. Each fisherman or minister accomplished his particular work through his own particular calling. Many evangelists took the wrong attitude as to what God was actually doing in that hair. They were completely unaware that the purpose of God in this net had been to bring the people into still more of the truth of the word of God!
Suddenly this one little man who had been used to spark this great revival and was a key figure now begins to turn his attention more and more to the teaching of the word of God. As never before he hammered away with the word of God, smashing the hammer into organized religion, into ideas and opinions of man etc.. crying, GET BACK TO THE WORD OF GOD! Perhaps you have wondered why different ministers who had all kinds of gift ministries and had gone over the world preaching salvation and divine healing did not go on with the word of God. Out of all I can think of there was only one who stayed with the WORD and taught it the way the apostles taught it. While many of those same men would not change water baptism from titles to the name of the Lord Jesus Christ although they knew deep within their hearts it was truth. they were afraid they would lose the prestige they had gained. evangelists now determined to go no further in the word of truth began to turn into other things, however the multitudes who had been introduced unto far more truth than what their denominations had taught under their various ministries – once that gospel net was spread over the earth, if these people themselves had not received the true baptism of the Holy Ghost they would go no fur-ther in God’s word than the man’s ministry who had brought them in or caught them in this gospel net. Truly, if the spirit within the grain they reap does not look beyond the man to Christ in deeper truths. they were merely tares to begin with and refusing to walk on in the truth of God’s word proves it!
ECUMENCIAL SPIRIT BINDS TARES
The ecumenical spirit beginning in the 60’s that we see today plowing through the denominational world is God’s way of sending into the religious systems a spirit of unity without the word which will eventually take all these denominational tares and bind them into one huge bundle before burning. Because in their organizational structure, they are nothing more than a bundle of tares made up of make believers, while many are nothing more than unbelievers! This prophet (unlike other evangelists) who would not compromise with this ecumenical spirit or any other spirit would not sit down, but rose up and began to shake that net filled with all kinds of religious creatures, with a message, calling people back to the word of God. Now watch, every little fish and every thing caught up in that net will now be tested because everything that is not a true born again fish will definitely crawl back into the water!
WORD IS THE THRESHING FLOOR
God is standing at the endtime in this separating how with a fan in his hand that fan is in a message delivered by a prophet to this age after the gospel net was pulled in and that fan will fan away everything that is not pure wheat!
SCRIBE AND HIS TREASURE BOX
As Jesus told the things to his disciples, listen to the beauty of the end of this seventh parable. Presenting this seventh parable Christ definitely shows there will be an end time separation from the tares and wheat and various kinds of fish at the end of the age, did he not? Therefore looking at his disciples he said, have you understood all these things? They said, yes Lord. Now we examine verse 52 in closing as we hear Christ say unto them–therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man that is a householder which brought forth out of his treasure things new and old. This lets me know it is simply Jesus’ way of saying at the endtime or end of the age there would be a scribe. Scribe, of course, is a theological word used as a religious term and in the Old Testament order a scribe was one schooled to correctly translate the word of God. He was one who had to be schooled not only to translate, but re-record it in so much that he would not leave one (i) undotted or one (t) uncrossed. In other words, he had to know every word in its exact setting. Spiritually this is to show us God would have a spiritual scribe standing in the closing hours of the seventh age when this gospel net had fully accomplished its work in bringing in its total catch and since he is a scribe he holds an office and in his calling he would be likened unto an Old Testament scribe in this sense—he has the authority by the Spirit of God to interpret God’s word in so much he is not like the other two men in the 5th and 6th parable who were looking, no – this scribe is already a householder and has in his possession a treasure box, who when the time arrives that the people need to see something (in the word) he brings out of his treasure new things, new revelations such as the Seals etc., and brings out old truths also, said Christ.
THINGS OLD, THINGS NEW
Beloved, understand this, Wiliam Marrion Branham is the only church age messenger who stood on this side of the Dark Ages who ever reached back and took the (old truths) revelation preached by Luther that the Just shall live by faith, combined it with the revelation of Calvin of Eternal Security of the believer, Knox’s revelation of predestination, along with John Wesley’s message of sanctification through holy living — combined all that with what pentecost preached concerning the Holy Ghost and the Oneness revelation of One God and Baptism in the Name of the Lord Jesus—placed all these great revelational truths correctly back within the one message of the Bible in their proper perspective and said CHURCH HERE IS WHAT YOU ARE TO BELIEVE, IT IS TIME FOR YOU TO GET BACK TO THE WORD OF GOD! CHRIST IS COMING SOON!
Get this, not only did he do that but he also brought out new revelations that was not even for the days of the apostles, such as THE BREAKING OF THE SEVEN SEALS.
As this man on the end of the 7th parable brought forth from his treasure box (office) things old and things new, it formed a movement around his teaching. The other ministries, especially in the deliverance move, earlier had formed a net which spread over the earth as each man’s ministry had great effect upon his particular catch. A catch of good and bad fish wherein once the word from the treasure box had preached and the separation hour was fully underway, those classified as bad fish, crawfish, tadpoles, etc., who could not stand the preaching of the true rev elated word went back to the sea or masses of denominationalism. Therefore, the movement which now began to form around the teaching of this one man, a man who by this time had gained the reputation of truly being a God sent prophet, was seeing a ministry in operation that had undoubtedly been unmatched throughout any part of either Jewish or Gentile church history beginning with the Book of Acts. This unusual ministry was “knowing the secrets of the human heart” (once the Spirit of the Lord was upon him), in so much that some became confused as to his true identity and began to think him none other than the Lord Jesus in this human form called William Branham, which of course was untrue! The Jews had seen this gift of knowing the secrets of the heart operate in Christ-however to this degree the gentile church had never seen its operation. Therefore at the closing of the gentile church age God permitted that miraculous gift (which was in Christ) to be seen in a gentile prophet who firmly believes qualifies to being the messenger to the Laodicean Age. This gift was displayed to the gentile church world who had never seen Christ after the flesh but only after the Holy Spirit. God allowed the endtime gentiles to see this gift in operation as had the Jews in their day! Unto an endtime people who were to receive a restored truth as it was taught and preached in the first church age back when God was using a fivefold ministry of apostles, prophets, teachers, pastors and evangelists (Eph. 4:11-13) to lead the church on to higher heights and deep depths unto perfection. Had the church not gone off into error because they refused to remain with the teaching of this fivefold ministry she no doubt would have come into perfection of the word long ago and would have already gone on to glory!!
Why was it in God’s plan to send a prophet to fulfill B-part of Mal. 4:5-6, seeing John the Baptist had already fulfilled the first portion according to Luke 1:17? TO RESTORE TRUTH!! Why was he a truth restorer at the end of the age? In order that the gentile church could be placed back into the hands of God’s capable apostles. prophets, pastors, teachers, and evangelists; to lead the church on into perfection of the word and to close out her earthly role. Thus the church, before Christ comes, must be brought into her assigned position of perfection as she is led by a fivefold ministry of men and until that hour arrives there will be no church to reach perfection and be translated to meet her Lord!!
PROPHET PAVES WAY
It must be fully understood before God could place the pure unadulterated revelated word of God as taught by the apostles, prophets, etc., (fivefold ministry) during that early church age back into the hands of a capable fivefold ministry who shall first of all themselves see the truth eye to eye as they lead the true church into perfection, that Almighty God had to first send this gentile prophet who fulfilled an office of Mal. 4:5-6 to the end of the gentile church age after the Protestant movement had run its course producing so much of the early apostolic teaching back to the church yet there it lay chopped, divided and torn to pieces by ideologies and carnality of men who had placed every little separate portion into a different organizational idea, as I have already stated this prophet took what each of those God sent Reformation leaders had brought to the church in their how and placed it all in one message for the endtime church to walk In! You’ see, the church to this hour had never walked in such a message of ‘truth. For instance, Luther preached the just shall live by faith and his followers endorsed that. However when Calvin came along with the security of the believer, they would not embrace that yet the Calvinist’s accepted the doctrine of Luther. When Knox came along with Predestination, they would not ac-cept that! The followers of Wesley accepted Luther’s teaching but would not receive Calvin’s or Knox’s! The Pentecostals, Oneness and Trinity, would not accept Calvin or Knox’s teaching, although they accepted Luther’s and Wesley’s! Therefore it took a prophet sent from God at the end of this age to bring each Reformation leader’s teaching into one message and say THIS IS WHAT THE APOSTLES TAUGHT, WALK YE IN IT! Therefore before God would turn this thing back over to a fivefold ministry to lead the church on to perfection, it was imperative he send this restoring office to restore the truth that by the revelation of faith these men might see eye to eye and seeing eye to eye on the revelation of the truth presented by this office fulfilling Mal. 4 they might in turn lead the church on to perfection!
5 MINISTRIES IN ONE PERSON
One human body. He was the apostle of all apostles: he was the prophet of all prophets, including Moses: he was the greatest teacher who ever walked and he fulfilled the role of pastor and evangelist. Therefore once he left the earth he distributed into his mystical body. the church here On earth all his gifts and ministries. The scriptures show how the church walked in truth in that first age as she gallantly followed the fivefold ministry of men of Eph. 4:11-13. Nevertheless because the prophet at the end of the age was so gifted in word and deed, it led many of his followers to believe that all the fivefold ministry lay within him and once the people reached the point they would hear no one else, God reached down and removed the man from the scene, leaving the church with no living ministry to carry them forth whatsoever! Therefore, thrashing about for years with no leadership other than every man following his own understanding as to what the prophet had said while he was here restoring the church to truth has only gotten this thing bogged down in a worse mess than it was-seeing that if five ministers of this movement goes out to tell the world what they feel the prophet said and even though they read out of the same books to to sure they say It exactly like he did. before placing their own interpretation upon It for sonic reason or other it has been a proven fact over the years those men cannot say it exactly like to save their life! Doing it in this manner is their understanding of what the prophet meant when he said, SAY IT LIKE I HAVE, referring to the message as you tell others. In order to fulfill this statement of the prophet it was never God’s intention you take mere verbal statements of this endtime prophet unto the world-but God’s intention was that you catch the revelation of what this man was saying which leads you back into the word of God, and then you carry that revelation to the world in your own statements! Christ never expected his own disciples when he turned the knapsack over to them to say every verbal word exactly as he had in order to deliver the revelation of truth! No, he meant for them to catch a revelation of what he was saying and as that revelation burned in their soul they would give it to the world in their own verbal expressions! Their expressions would carry the same, identical revelation as spoken by Christ. This should be also applied in the same manner to this endtime message! And until that happens men will not be saying it alike or seeing eye to eye on the revelation! Though you may have been I discouraged in times past over the fact there have been so many interpretations of the statements made by this prophet by various ‘ followers trying to get his message out, be of good courage because when God brings the fivefold ministry on the scene, I assure you they will everyone know (1st) the role this prophet William Branham played in straightening up the truth that had been so confused through Protestantism and like the early church who knew the role of John the Baptist the first forerunner of Christ so shall the endtime fivefold ministry know the role of this man and he shall be given his rightful scriptural position in their teaching—NO MORE AND NO LESS!
WARNING FOR ENDTIME BELIEVERS
I will close by making two sad but important statements. The bulk of the religious world will never accept that God sent an endtime prophet to the gentiles as he fulfilled an office of Malachi 4 in a restoring message to give the church something solid to believe. that is to straighten them up in their teachings whereby a fivefold ministry could be brought in under the Holy Spirit to take the church on into perfection: Secondly. the bulk of the people who formed a movement around this man’s teaching, who continually say, Oh, but you must say it exactly as the prophet did or you are not in the message (something the prophet himself never said) will never accept the fact God will use a fivefold ministry of Ephesians 4 to perfect the restored church before she is called to glory!!