IN PART ONE OF THIS MESSAGE WE WERE ENDEAVORING TO TIE TOGETHER THE CHAIN OF EVENTS THAT WILL FOLLOW THE FULFILLING OF CHAPTER 10, THE CHAPTER FROM WHICH WE TOOK OUR TEXT, AND WE GOT OVER TO THE MIDDLE OF THE SEVENTIETH WEEK OF DANIEL, WHERE THE FOURTH TRUMPET ANGEL SOUNDED HIS TRUMPET, SO WE WILL PICK UP RIGHT THERE, AND CONTINUE. BUT FIRST, LET ME REMIND YOU, THAT THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THIS MESSAGE IS TO DEAL WITH THE MYSTERY OF GOD MENTIONED IN OUR TEXT. WHAT IS IT? LET US BE SURE WE UNDERSTAND THE FACT, THAT THIS MYSTERY IS SOMETHING THAT GOD’S OLD TESTAMENT PROPHETS WROTE ABOUT, BUT DID NOT UNDERSTAND. BUT BY THE TIME THE VOICE OF THE LAODICEAN CHURCH AGE MESSENGER HAS HAD ITS WORLDWIDE AFFECT ON THE UNIVERSAL CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD, THIS MYSTERY WILL BE FULLY REVEALED AND FINISHED, THIS MYSTERY THAT WAS SPOKEN OF BY THOSE OLD PROPHETS. WE HAVE TRIED TO MAKE IT CLEAR, THAT THE WORD VOICE, DOES NOT PERTAIN TO THE AUDIBLE SOUNDS OF THE 7TH CHURCH AGE MESSENGER’S VOICE, BUT RATHER TO THE MESSAGE HE DELIVERED TO THIS AGE. THE MESSAGE THAT CALLED GOD’S TRUE PEOPLE OUT OF DENOMINATIONAL BONDAGE, AND BACK TO THE WORD OF GOD. THE MESSAGE THAT DECLARED JESUS CHRIST TO BE THE ONE AND ONLY PERSON OF THE GODHEAD, AND THAT WATER BAPTISM IS TO BE BY IMMERSION, IN HIS NAME, FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, ACCORDING TO ACTS 2:38, AND THAT WE MUST RETURN TO THE FAITH OF OUR APOSTOLIC FATHERS, TO BE ACCEPTABLE TO GOD. THEREFORE WITH THIS IN MIND, LET US OPEN OUR BIBLE TO REVELATION 11:7, WHERE GOD’S TWO PROPHETS ARE KILLED BY THE ANTICHRIST AND HIS EVIL FORCES, AFTER THEY HAVE PROPHESIED TO ISRAEL FOR EXACTLY 3 ½ YEARS.
- 1 ANTICHRIST TAKES CONTROL
- 2 HEAVENLY VINDICATION OF GOD’S DISPLEASURE
- 3 WHAT THIS GENERATION WILL SEE
- 4 LIKE THE DAYS OF NOAH AND LOT
- 5 HELL TURNED LOOSE UPON EARTH
- 6 PUNISHMENT OF UNGODLY MANKIND
- 7 THE REASON WE ARE USING ALL THESE SCRIPTURES
- 8 ARMAGEDDON BEING PREPARED
- 9 THE SEVENTH TRUMPET ANGEL SOUNDS
- 10 THE THIRD WOE
- 11 JOHN SAW THE CHURCH IN HEAVEN
- 12 THE MARK OF THE BEAST
- 13 PREACHING THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL
- 14 PROTECTED BY THE SEAL OF GOD
- 15 THE FIRST RESURRECTION
- 16 MAN’S UTOPIA MUST WAIT
- 17 DO NOT DEPEND ON ASSUMPTIONS
- 18 PETER–LED BY THE SPIRIT
- 19 A SOVEREIGN GOD AT WORK
- 20 SOME EDUCATED PEOPLE SELL THE GOSPEL
- 21 WHAT GENTILES HAVE BECOME HEIRS TO
- 22 DO YOU HAVE ETERNAL LIFE?
ANTICHRIST TAKES CONTROL
We will read verse 3, first, for it tells us how long they will prophesy, and then we will read verse 7. “And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.” Their prophesy starts at the very beginning of that covenant week of years, spoken of by Daniel. Therefore the 1260 days of their prophesy brings time exactly to the middle of that week. Let us read verse 7, where they are killed, and then we will go to chapter 8, verses 12 and 13, where we will pick up the fourth trumpet angel. Verse 7, “And when they shall have finished their testimony, (That means, When 3 ½ years have expired.) The beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.” First let me say, No corporal bodied beast is going to come up out of hell. Only a spirit could do that. It is the spirit of that old demon possessed Roman Empire, that is permitted to come up out of hell and embody itself in that ten nation European best system that the old Antichrist (the Roman Catholic Pope) is the head of. The old Pope has made his covenant with many nations, and that is supposed to guarantee world peace and prosperity, and he has sat for 3 ½ years, watching news broadcasts of the ministry of those two prophets there in Israel. They have revealed his scriptural position to the spiritual element of Jews, and warned them to flee from him and his army when he comes to Israel to fulfill his prophesied role in the scriptures, and what he has heard during that time, convinces him that their mouth’s have to be stopped permanently. That is when this spirit of Satan will completely take control of him, and that is when he goes to Jerusalem with his Gentile army, kills the two prophets, and takes control of the temple. He sits himself in the temple of God, and proclaims that he himself is God, according to Paul’s revelation in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4. That definitely takes place exactly in the middle of the seventieth week of Daniel, so let us go to chapter 8:12-13, where we find the sounding of the 4th trumpet angel recorded, and we will see how the sounding of these trumpet angels affect mankind on earth. The sounding of the first three, as we have already stated, were directly associated with the ministry of God’s two prophets, there in Israel, but when we come to the 4th trumpet, its direct effect is only seen in the heavens. It does not touch earth at all, except for the affect it has upon mankind that must witness the interruption of the normal cycle of these heavenly bodies.
HEAVENLY VINDICATION OF GOD’S DISPLEASURE
Let us read verses12 and 13 now. “And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars; so as the third part of them was darkened, and the day shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise. And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!” That display in the heavens marks the middle of that week of time, and shows God’s displeasure with the nation of Israel for signing that peace covenant with the Antichrist. Then an angel flies through the air, announcing three definite woes that are to come upon the inhabiters of the earth, when those last 3 trumpet angels sound their trumpets. What takes place at the sounding of the 4th trumpet actually sounds like there is going to be a solar eclipse, doesn’t it? Well, that is what it is, but please notice, that only a third part of the sun, moon, and stars was affected, and only a third part of the day and night. What could all of this be for? You may say. Well, let us just go back about two thousand years, to the day Jesus hung there on that old cross, on Golgotha. Prior to that, it was those Judaistic Jews that had demanded Pilot to have Jesus crucified. All through the trial, there was nothing evident, to indicate that God was displeased with what was going on. Pilot said, I find no fault in him. Crucify him! Crucify him! Was their reply. Pilot called for a pan of water, washed his hands, and said, “I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.” But those hypocrites still cried out, Crucify him! Crucify him, and still God showed no sign that He was displeased with what they were doing. They led Him up to Mt. Calvary for public execution, stretched Him out on an old cross, and drove spikes through His hands and feet, and still God showed no signs of His displeasure with what they were doing. But when He hung there on that cross, after having cried, My God, My God, Whey has thou forsaken me? His head limp upon His chest, and all life gone out of Him, then suddenly, the heaven became darkened, the earth began to tremble, and a Roman soldier was heard to say. Truly this was the Son of God. Heaven had given vindication of God’s displeasure with that bunch of religious hypocrites. God let them go ahead and do what they were destined to do, before He did anything to express Himself in the matter. So just remember what Jesus said in John 5:43, “ I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another (the Antichrist) shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.” Just bring that statement forward about two thousand years, and that is exactly what is getting ready to take place. Jesus was not talking to the spiritual Jews that believed on Him, when He said that. He was talking to the political and Judaistic Jews that were rejecting Him, and that is the very ones that will gladly sign a covenant with the Antichrist when he comes.
WHAT THIS GENERATION WILL SEE
My brother and sisters, if many of you sitting here today, live a normal life span, you are going to live to hear the news of that when it takes place, for I am fully persuaded that it will take place during the life time of this generation. No I am not talking only to the teenagers here today. I am talking to some of you older folks also. Why do I say that? Because of the rapid rate of moral decay and instability in the world today. If God allowed this present trend to continue another 40 or 50 years, every congressional and senate seat would be filled with some sort of renegade or pervert, that could not care less about the good and welfare of the people they are there to represent. Our schools are being invaded by atheists, perverts, and every sort of immoral character you can think of, and at this late hour, there is little that can be done about it. This modern world today no longer seeks out men and women with decent moral standards to teach their children, and to represent their interests in the governmental affairs of their nation. It is the same the world over. It is the devil’s way of taking over. Honesty and uprightness is no longer considered as main values, and anyone who tries to hold to those old values are considered to be trouble makers and bigoted. The Bible tells us to hate evil, but when you express yourself about the evil that is present on every hand, you are treated as though you are the evil one. The old image of decency and honesty is hated, and the world is being overrun with people of Sodomite principles, which is exactly according to Satan’s design. That is why I say the time is getting close, for God to call His true people to “Come up hither,” and let the rest of the world enter into the dark hour of hopelessness that they have so diligently cultivated by the choices they have made. Everywhere you go, you find people that are demonstrating against something. They are for peace, at any cost, so they say, but most of the time, the whole thing erupts into violence. Can you even imagine the apostle Paul getting a group of people together, to demonstrate against the Roman imperial government? That has never been God’s way of getting things done. Well, it just goes to show, people in this hour of time, are not looking for God’s way, they want their own way, and God is letting them have their own way, but they are going to have to pay a dear price for it on down the road.
LIKE THE DAYS OF NOAH AND LOT
We need not be surprised at the condition the world is in today, if we believe the Bible, for Jesus Himself plainly stated, that the overall conditions that would be prevailing when He comes again, would be as they were in the days of Noah, and in the days of Lot, when violence and perversion were present on every hand. You will find that in Luke 17, and Matthew 24, if you care to read it. What these conditions really add up to in these last days, is that the world will be filled with creatures called mankind, that will be little more than educated animals. The truth is, Animals will not stoop as low as unregenerate mankind. Therefore by the middle of that 70th prophetic week of Daniel, this old world will be just as rotten as rotten can be, so it is no wonder the city of Jerusalem is referred to in the likeness of Sodom and Egypt, in Revelation 11:8. That is when the 4th trumpet angel sounds. His sounding actually marks the middle of that week. The old pope has been sitting across the Mediterranean, watching on television, all that God’s two prophets have been doing in Israel for 3 ½ years, and hearing what they have been saying about him, and seeing that great revival taking place among the spiritual Jews. Therefore by the time 3 ½ years have elapsed, he has already formulated a plan to put a stop to all of that, and the first thing he must do is get rid of those two fanatical prophets, so when that fourth angels sounds, and God causes the heavenly bodies to express His displeasure with Israel for signing that peace covenant with the Antichrist, the old Antichrist (Pope) already knows what he is going to do. At least he has the first phases of it already worked out, and what he does will fulfill Daniel 9:27, and 12:7, and 2 Thess. 2:1-4, and Revelation 11:7. He will have the two prophets killed, break the covenant with Israel, kick the Jews out of their temple, and move himself in, and then sit there in the temple of God, showing himself to the world, and claiming to be God. That puts an abrupt end to all of that Holy Ghost dancing, shouting, and prophesying that has been going on there for the last 3 ½ years. Almost instantly, he accomplishes something that Nasser, Hussein, nor any of the rest of Israel’s enemies had been able to do; he puts them on the run, fleeing for their lives. For how long? For exactly 3 ½ years, according to Daniel 12:7, Revelation 12:6 and 13:5, and it will not be one week more nor less, for God Himself will be the timekeeper. His European police force will completely take over the city, fulfilling Revelation 11:2, where it speaks of the Gentiles treading under foot the outer court of the temple, and the holy city, for 42 months. You think you have seen martial law in effect before, and curfews, you have seen nothing that would compare with what will be in affect there in the city of Jerusalem in that day and hour. The first reaction of those political Jews, is to be glad those trouble making prophets have been silenced, for they have been under fire from them, just like the Pope has. Mr. Begin never would have signed such a covenant with the Antichrist, but only God knows whether those who have succeeded him will be the ones to sign it, or not. Anyhow I believe it is clear, that this fourth trumpet is the sign of the Antichrist, God’s sign to the Jewish nation. Oh, Saints: I am so glad, this was put in a prophetic letter, and given to the Gentile church. Of course the church world in general is as blind as a bat, when it comes to the revelation of the contents of this letter, so let us be grateful to God for allowing us to have that revelation. It enables us to keep our lives on a straight course, while everything is falling apart around us.
HELL TURNED LOOSE UPON EARTH
Now I am not a scientist, nor an astronomer, and I do not know one thing about astronomy, but there are those who can tell you the exact time of every eclipse, and all such things, years and years in advance of the event. For example, back in 1979, we began hearing a lot of talk about how nine planets were going to be lined up in a straight line, at a precise time in 1982. They knew it was going to happen, and it did. Their scientific means enabled them to make those calculations, but here is why I am mentioning this. I wonder how these events under this fourth trumpet will fit into their calculations? It just lets us know, God has something He is going to pull on them, that they cannot calculate ahead of time. Hallelujah! I am so glad He still rules the heavenly bodies. Aren’t you? But what a dark hour for Israel, that is going to be, and the political Jews will not even be aware of what is happening. Nevertheless the middle of that week has arrived, the fourth angel has sounded his trumpet, the Pope has moved in, the heavens have announced God’s displeasure with what has happened, so let us pick up right there, and follow the sequence of events that are to come. Chapter 8, verse 13, we find three woes being announced, after that fourth trumpet angel has sounded, so let us read that verse again, to refresh our memory, before moving on. “And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!” In other words, There are three definite woes being announced, that are going to come forth after the sounding of the other three trumpet angels, so let us go right to the first verse of chapter 9, where the fifth angel sounded, “and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit, (hell itself) And he opened the bottomless pit: and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit. And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth.” This is just the opposite of what those first three trumpets did. They were to burn a third part of the trees, and all green grass, and so forth. Of course we realize that this was confined to the Middle East, and the trees and grass were not burned by atomic rays, nor anything like that, as some suppose, or they would have lost their reproductive ability. As we have said already, When the heavens were shut up, and they had no rain for such a long time, the tree leaves and grass just dried up, and withered away. But when the rain did come again, up came the grass, and all such like. Then here comes something, at the sounding of the fifty trumpet angel, that is not even supposed to touch the grass, nor any vegetation whatsoever. Well it is obvious that these are spirits being turned loose upon wicked mankind. It is in the last half of Daniel’s 70th week, the Antichrist is on the scene in Israel, so all hell is being turned loose on earth. Remember this also, These spirits will not be confined just to the Middle East, they will move through the nations, and even though they are characterized as being like unto certain insects, they are spirits, going forth to torment mankind. Let us read the rest of verse 4. They were not to hurt any green thing, not even the trees, “but only those men WHICH HAVE NOT THE SEAL OF GOD IN THEIR FOREHEADS.” Verse 5, “And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man. And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.” Now brothers and sisters, this is not talking about virtuous, saintly Jews, nor foolish virgins. It will be carnal mankind, that God has turned the devil loose on. Their torment will be so severe, that they will seek to die, to escape it, but God will not let them die until their allotted torment has been accomplished.
PUNISHMENT OF UNGODLY MANKIND
I have just been reading, of the large percentage of what is commonly referred to as Gays, being carriers of this disease that is found almost exclusively among them, and how it is claiming the lives of so many of them, and I just thought to myself, Yes, God is giving you a sign, to let you know that you have crossed the boundary line with your perversion, but you will not take heed, so you will perish. God has just turned the devil loose on them already, and they will not admit it. They will say, Oh God would not do that; He is a God of love. Well I also say, He is a God of Love, but He has certain laws that mankind simply cannot break, and still avoid His hand that shall fall on them. When you break those laws, you have gone too far. I do not want to give the impression of being hard hearted, and vindictive, but I do want to impress upon you, the fact that this God of love that people speak of so freely, is also a God of judgment and wrath, against those that take pleasure in living in an ungodly state of degradation. First He turns the devil loose on them, as in the last half of that week of Daniel, but at the end of that week the pure wrath of God will be turned lose upon them, to finish them off. So as we see that trumpet number 5 turns hell loose upon earth, let us read a little more of the description of those tormenting spirits. Verse 7, “And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.” Brothers and Sisters: I hope we all understand that these descriptions are for the sake of showing the affect these satanic spirits will have on natural mankind. No one will see a literal creature such as is described, but when those satanic spirits come against men’s souls, it will have such a tormenting affect as would be realized from the sting or bite of such creatures. Just think of the suffering people sometimes go through when they are stung by a little old yellow jacket, or a wasp. They can really make you miserable. But that is nothing, compared to what these spirits from out of hell will do to natural mankind in the last half of that week of Daniel (the great tribulation period.) We will go ahead and read verses 8, 9, 10, but what I am really interested in getting to, is verses 11 and 12, for they let us know that all of this other adds up to the first woe of the three that have been announced by the fourth angel. Verse 8, “And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions. And they had breastplates as it were breastplates of iron and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle. And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months.” God even set a limit on that. But let us notice verse 11, which speaks of a king over these tormenting spirits. “And they had a king over them, WHICH IS THE ANGEL OF THE BOTTOMLESS PIT, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.” Both terms pertain to a destroying angel, or to lead to destruction. But verse 12 lets us know that these demons that have been turned loose upon earth, constitute the first woe. “One woe is past; and behold, there come two woes more hereafter.”
THE REASON WE ARE USING ALL THESE SCRIPTURES
I believe it should be clear, that once the middle of that week arrives, and the Antichrist breaks his covenant with the Jews, hell follows. These demon spirits will literally invade society to the extent that one would have to say, Hell has been turned loose upon earth. No wonder that angel cried, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth. This definitely is one of them, and there are two more to come. The next one is found in chapter 11. After the killing of the two prophets, and after they were resurrected, and called up to heaven, verse 13 says, “And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.” The temple is not disturbed, but a tenth part of the city of Jerusalem is destroyed, and seven thousand men are slain when that earthquake strikes, and those that are left alive, finally recognize the fact, that God Himself is still in control of things. It says, They gave glory to God, but as we have already said, That simply men as that they were finally forced to admit that God is the one, and the only one that could have done such a thing. In other words, They give God recognition for the very first time, but they are not saved by their confession. They are not giving their hearts to God in repentance, as we have seen it in times past. No. But they have seen two dead prophets resurrected, after they had already begun to rot, and they have seen one tenth of their city destroyed, and seven thousand men slain, by an unforeseen earthquake that rumbled through immediately after the prophets were resurrected, so who but the God of heaven could do all of that? That is how they are giving glory to Him, and this constitutes the second woe. But let me say, before we get the third woe, Some of you may be wondering how all of this fits into a message dealing with the mystery of God, so I want to clarify that for you at this time. Things that people say, teach, or ask, many times leads to a message dealing with their thoughts, or with the revelation of the thing that provoked their thoughts, and so forth. In this case, we are covering the events of the 70th week of Daniel, hoping to be able to show you that nothing pertaining to the events of that week of time are even related to Revelation 10:7, the verse from which we took our text. Those woes are not the consummation of some mystery that has been going on, and neither is the seventh angel of Revelation 10:7, the same as the seventh trumpet angel of the things we are reading about now. We are covering it all, to show that these two seventh angels are not the same. One is a man of flesh and bones, and the other is truly a spirit being. The mystery spoken of in Revelation 10:7 is completely finished prior to the week of Daniel. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the Jewish people. It was hid from them, because it was something God was going to do for Gentiles, make them partakers of His grace and mercy, and that dispensation when He does that, Is completely finished before He turns back to the Jews again. As I have already said, Jewish people have never understood why Gentiles accepted Jesus whom they call, the son of Joseph, as our Lord and Saviour. But let me give you a little parallel. God had those Jewish prophets write, concerning the Messiah that was to come, and He had them write, concerning something He was going to do for Gentiles, but those Jewish leaders rejected their Messiah when He came, and they had no revelation whatsoever that God would ever do anything for Gentiles. That is the picture on their side, so now, let us turn the thing around, and look at it from the other direction. Gentiles have had the gospel for over 1900 years now, and the greater percentage of those who profess to be Christians, do not really know who Jesus Christ is, (Most of them believe He is the second person of a triune Godhead.) And they have completely rejected the prophet to this age, that God sent to turn His true people back to His word, and back to a true revelation. A lot of them seem to hate the Jews, and could not even conceive of the fact that god will one day leave the Gentiles, and turn back to the Jews. It is all written, just like it was two thousand years ago, but foolish, self righteous Gentiles today are doing just exactly what foolish, self righteous Jews did back then, they are rejecting the very thing they profess to be looking for. God’s true salvation. They treat the book of Revelation as if it is something dangerous for one to study, and tell their people, that they would be better off, if they would just leave it alone. Yet within those 22 chapters, is concealed many beautiful truths, things that God is yet going to do for the Gentile church, things that He is going to do for the Jews, and vital information concerning how all of this is going to end up. It is true, that most of it is written about the Jews, but do not forget, it is a Gentile letter, and the Gentile church needs to know what is pertains to. It will help her get herself ready to travel. I always think of something the apostle Paul wrote to the Roman assembly, chapter 11, verse 25, “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; THAT BLINDNESS IN PART is happened to Israel, UNTIL THE FULNESS OF THE GENTILES BE COME IN.” Can you even conceive of the truth, that even though there are more Gentiles in the world today than there has ever been, God has just about reaped for His harvest, all that will ever believe the gospel and be saved. The world is being overrun with paganism, and regardless of what some of these preachers are saying, there will be no more of those great revivals, where sinners repent, and turn to God, and Christians repent, and start living for God. People who have no love for the truth, are being turned over to a reprobate mind, to believe the devil’s lie, and be damned, just like the Bible says. God Himself is sending strong delusion upon them, because they seek fleshly sensations, instead of the truth of His word. Just read Romans chapter 1, and 2 Thessalonians chapter 2, and you will see what God’s word has to say about this sort. When you try to explain something about the book of Revelation to them, what is the first thing you hear? Where did you go to school? What theological degrees do you have? Who gave you a license to preach? Brother! Who gave John the authority to write this book? The same God that anointed John to write it, also anoints others to understand it, and they do not have to have a certificate from some natural man’s school of theology, Praise God. What degrees, and what licenses did John have? Did you ever stop to think, that the entire Bible was written by men who had no license to do so, and except for the apostle Paul in the New Testament, men that had no theological schooling, so why should it require such, in order to read it, and understand it, and teach it? All of this license idea, came from man’s own carnal ideas: God never ordained it. Men complicate what God intended to be kept in simplicity.
ARMAGEDDON BEING PREPARED
Alright now, let us continue on with these trumpets. We have seen that the two prophets were, or will be killed at the sounding of the sixth trumpet, but at the sounding of the sixth trumpet, there is actually no woe mentioned. Let us go back to chapter 9, verse 13, and pick up the sounding of the sixth trumpet angel. “And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates. And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men, and the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.” You could go on reading there, and you would find nothing at all said about the second woe. But the fourth angel, in verse 13, of chapter 8, has already announced that there would be a woe in relation to each of the three trumpets that were yet to sound, and even though the second woe is not specifically mentioned at the time the sixth angel sounds, or I should say, in the immediate scriptures that follow, we still have to remember, that all of these things will have to correspond to what is written about them. The thing that makes it seem out of proportion is the fact that all of this is happening at the same time, right exactly in the middle of the week, and John just has to write it one thing at a time. Actually what we see here, takes us back to chapter 7; let us read that. Verse 1, “And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, (the four corners of the earth is right there in the Middle East. That is the heart of the earth, the cradle of all mankind.) Holding the four winds (political winds) of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree. An I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God? And he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.” Now what we see when the sixth trumpet angel sounds, is these four angels turned loose, to prepare Armageddon. In chapter 7, they are actually bound, not tied up with ropes, nor chains, but forbidden to allow political winds to blow, that would set the stage for the battle of Armageddon. Why? God is giving His two Jewish prophets 3 ½ years, to prophesy to the nation of Israel before He will allow the Communistic forces of the world to start gathering together for the battle of Armageddon. There must be 144,000 Jewish men sealed with the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and another large element of Jewish people also sealed, the element that is referred to in chapter 12, as the woman. Then, exactly in the middle of that week of years, when these last three trumpets sound, there will be every act of wickedness and violence taking place, that you could even imagine. That is when those four angels that have been bound in the river Euphrates, will be released, to go and prepare the forces for the battle of Armageddon. When it says they were bound, that only means they were hindered, and when they are loose, it means they have permission to proceed with their duties. They can turn loose their spiritual forces to begin to set the world in motion for Armageddon. Armageddon will not be fought until the very last of that seventieth week of Daniel, but it will take that long to get the whole thing set in motion. Two hundred million men is a lot of men to be gathered together unto battle, but that is the number this prophecy calls for, so spiritual forces are set in motion to bring it about, but the thing that actually constitutes the 2nd woe is the killing of those two Jewish prophets. I know people have a tendency to think of a lapse of time between these events, but please try to keep in mind, they all take place immediately after the middle of the week is announced by the sounding of the fourth trumpet. As we read it in the Bible, even chapter 10, that brings the Gentile church back into the picture, is right there between the first and second woe, but we all know that the bride church will be in glory when all of this is taking place. That is why it takes the Holy Ghost to unscramble the events recorded in this prophecy, and put them in their proper place. I always think of what Bro. William Branham used to say about the book of Revelation. He said it is like a jigsaw puzzle. Each piece carried a part of the total picture, and the only way the picture is ever complete is when we understand where each piece fits. But we know God Himself is the one that had the pieces scrambled up like that, simply because He did not want Satan and all his imps to be able to find out what was actually going to happen. Gentile theologians have never been able to place the order of events where they actually belong. That is why Billy Graham has the four horsemen of chapter 6 riding at some future date, simply because his theology cannot help him put the pieces in their proper places.
THE SEVENTH TRUMPET ANGEL SOUNDS
Well, anyhow, when we read in chapter 11 how the two prophets are killed, how they are left lying in the street until they begin to rot, and how God raised them from the dead, and calls them to, Come up hither, there is a great earthquake, a tenth part of Jerusalem is destroyed, and seven thousand men are slain, then we read in verse 14, “The second woe is past; and behold, the third woe cometh quickly.” That does not mean, a few weeks later; it means immediately. Of course, the third woe is not even mentioned as the third woe, and the things that are recorded following the sounding of the 7th trumpet angel give you a general picture of the complete setting throughout the remainder of that week of time, but you just have to remember to keep everything in its proper place of fulfillment, for these trumpet angels are releasing spiritual forces, and the description of them is a heavenly scene, and when we actually read the part in chapter 12, that constitutes the 3rd woe, we must realize that it belongs exactly in the middle of the week, for the woman must flee from the wrath of the Antichrist for exactly 42 months. So let us look at the seventh trumpet beginning in verse 15 of chapter 11. “And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever. And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshiped God, saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which are, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and has reigned. And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth. And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in His temple the ark of His testament; and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.” That covers the coming of the Lord, to literally set up His Millennial kingdom, the nations angry with each other, the judgment and everything, but we have not even come to the part that constitutes the 3rd woe. That seventh trumpet finishes setting spiritual forces in motion that will climax the whole thing, but it is all done in the spiritual dimension; the earthly fulfillment of those events will still have to follow their orderly course. Their course is orderly, but the events themselves are the picture of complete disorder and chaos until the Lord Himself intervenes, and restores order. You will recall what Jesus said in Matthew 24: 29, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days (that 3 ½ years) shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken; and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” There are two or three things that I might point out, from these two verses. First it lets us know that the great tribulation must run its course of exactly 1260 days, before the Lord will come. Then secondly, The events that take place described in those two verses, are exactly the same as those under the 6th seal, the 7th trumpet, and the 7th vial. All four descriptions are of the same thing. When the sun is darkened this time, it is a celestial sign of the coming of Jesus Christ. But where is the 3rd woe? What does it pertain to? It is in chapter 12. This chapter gives us a panoramic prophetic picture of the nation of Israel from birth, all the way through time, to her Millennial glory. The woman is the nation of Israel, that gave birth to the man child, Jesus the Christ, whom the devil tried to destroy at birth, but could not. She brought forth this man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron (in the Millennium) and her child was caught up to God, and to His throne. That of course, was after His resurrection, when He ascended to heaven while His disciples stood watching. That covers the first 5 verses of this chapter, and verse 6, is where the woman flees into the wilderness to hide from the Antichrist for a total period of 1260 days, which is from the middle of the week of Daniel to the end of the week. But between verses 5 and 6, is where the Gentile church comes into the picture. Between those two verses the whole mystery of God concerning the Gentiles, is fulfilled, a period of over 1900 years. By the time the woman flees into the wilderness, the Gentiles bride church will be in glory, at the marriage supper of the Lamb, and the mystery of God, that we are dealing with in this message, will be a totally fulfilled picture.
THE THIRD WOE
Let us skip down to verses 10-12 now, and we will see what that 3rd woe is. “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren (the devil) is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. (Notice now) WOE to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. And when the dragon (the devil) saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, (the messages of the two prophets) that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent (the devil.)” I believe we can see from that, what the 3rd woe is. It is the persecution of Israel by that devil possessed Antichrist, from the middle of the week when all hell is turned loose upon mankind, to the end of the week, when the Lord Jesus Himself comes from glory with all His saints, and intervenes in the whole thing. Of course I have said before, and I will say it again: those two prophets that prophesy to Israel for 3 ½ years in the first half of that week, are the ones that tell the woman where she must go, to be safe from the wrath of the old man of sin. He will never lay a hand on any Jew that is part of what is referred to as the woman in verses 6 and 14. It is the remnant of her seed, that he begins to slaughter. Those two prophets know what is coming, so as time nears the middle of the week, they will be telling the woman element, Get on a plane, and get out of here; the time is at hand. She cannot stay there in Israel until the Antichrist arrives and starts his slaughter, or the number of her days of hiding from him, could not be exactly 1260, and I do believe that God means for these days to be precisely calculated. It would not matter if she arrived a few days early at her destination, where she will be fed and protected from the Antichrist, for it is only the 1260 days of his wrath, that she has to be hidden and protected from him. Nevertheless God will have it all worked out; and it will go exactly according to His plan, so do not worry about anything going wrong at the last minute. Now there are some people who think this woman is the church, and they think the church is going through the tribulation, all because they see that great multitude in chapter 7, from all nations, kindreds, peoples and tongues, and the question is asked, Who, or what are these? Then when John could not answer, he said, “These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” These who believe that, will say, There is no place in the Bible that says the church is raptured before the tribulation. Well I believe I can show you that it is, if you will bear with me for a few minutes. First let me read from 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, what Paul said about the rapture of the bride church. (That is the only group he ever referred to as the church, and the only ones he referred to spiritually, as brethren.) “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died, and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” That tells us how, and in what order, the rapture will take place. So let us begin in verse 6, of chapter 5, and read a few verses to complete the thought. “Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober, For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for a helmet, the hope of salvation. (Watch now) FOR GOD HATH NOT APPOINTED US TO WRATH, BUT TO OBTAIN SALVATION BY OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST.” If we are not appointed to wrath, then we cannot be allowed to go into the great tribulation. Well who are those that come up out of great tribulation then? Foolish Gentile virgins that miss the rapture because they are not dressed in a revelation of God’s word when the rapture takes place, and Jews who will accept martyrdom rather than renounce their faith in God. Their martyrdom will merit them the white robes of salvation, that we see in chapter 7.
JOHN SAW THE CHURCH IN HEAVEN
Then there are some who will say, John did not see the church raptured. No. But he did see it in type. That is why he was allowed to remain on earth in physical consciousness, while the Lord spoke to him as high priest, in the first three chapters. Because the first three chapters covered the period of time in which the church was to be on earth through the age of grace. But when it came time to set the stage, and the type of the rapture of the Gentile church, the Lord was no longer seen on earth, as high priest, standing in the midst of seven candlesticks. The voice John heard, spake from heaven, and he saw a door open. (Hallelujah!) And that voice said to him, through that open door, Come up hither! Then immediately he ascended into heaven: Hallelujah! That lets us know, that when the Gentile church has run its course here on earth, God takes it to glory. Why send it into the great tribulation? It has already been purged and made clean. That is why John could see the church already in heaven, over in chapter 19, and could see her coming back to earth with Jesus, on white horses. He did not ask how she got there, for he was being shown what God would do with all those other mortals from every nation, that were still on earth. I have said many times, Paul saw the church going to glory, and John saw her coming back, so what further scriptural proof should a believer need? But let us read some more of Revelation 12, for I want us to be sure we see that 3rd woe, even though it is not called that when you read it. The seventh trumpet angel sounds, in Rev. 11:15, and the 3rd woe is to be activated by the sounding, or following the sounding of that angel, so when we find in verse 12, of chapter 12, WOE to the inhabiters of the earth, and realize that it is spoken in connection with the martyrdom of those that overcome the devil by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony: because they loved not their lives unto the death, this has to be the 3rd woe. Therefore we can accurately say, The third woe is the ruthless blood bath of Jews that the old Antichrist orders, when he breaks the covenant with the nation of Israel. We connect it with the Jews because they are in the spotlight, but the foolish virgins will partake of the slaughter also. Let us read verses 13-17 now. “And when the dragon (the devil) saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the man child (two thousand years ago.) And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. (That is exactly 3 ½ years) And the serpent (the devil) cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. (She is being hidden, and cared for, and the reason she knew where to go, was because those two prophets had already told her where to go to escape that flood of persecution from the people of the old Antichrist’s international police force.) And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed: which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Saints, that old man of sin is going to be so infuriated at the truly spiritual element of Jewish people, he will issue a proclamation, requiring the death of every individual that refuses to renounce faith in God and worship him as God. That will get all the orthodox Jews, and all the Gentile foolish virgins that are seen in chapter 7, with white robes, giving glory to God. That is why it was said to John, “These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” When that seventh trumpet angel has finished sounding; all of the spiritual forces that will bring the coming of Jesus at the end of that week will be loosed, and everything will just have to follow its predetermined order of fulfillment. That is why it is important to remember, or to realize, all of these last three trumpets sound exactly in the middle of that week, and everything that has been held back during the age of grace will be turned loose upon earth, to manifest itself in due course. Hell is turned loose, the two prophets are killed, and the wrath of the Antichrist is turned loose against every spiritual person that believes in God, simply because those Jews have pushed him to the limit, with this great Holy Ghost revival they have been having. Therefore when it swings into action, this is where the mark of the beast comes into the picture. Whoever is left here on earth then, will either wear that identifying mark, or they will be killed for refusing to wear it. That brings us to the 13th chapter , and to the scripture that has caused a lot of people to make many foolish projections concerning the mark of the beast.
THE MARK OF THE BEAST
Even back in the 1970’s various articles were published, stating that a cashless society was knocking on our doors, and that this thing would be the mark of the beast, and all such like. Some even said it would all be in effect by the year 1982. But I believe most of you will remember, I said, back then, The cashless society will not go into effect universally, until time itself is close to the tribulation hour. Certain individual nations may go ahead, and put into effect a cashless society, but all of this is just stepping stones to the real thing. It will not fulfill Revelation 13, until the man of sin has decreed it as a compulsory system, and that will take in a complete universal scope. Nevertheless I will say to you saints of God, Just do not go to sleep concerning this matter. The banks are not going to announce months in advance, that this thing is going to be in effect a certain date. They will just try to lull everyone to sleep, and spring it on them over night. Let us read a few verses from chapter 13, especially those that speak of the mark of the beast. The earlier verses deal with the old ten horned beast with seven heads, and how the beast would make war with the saints, and overcome them, and how all whose names were not written in the Lamb’s book of life will worship that beast man, the head of that old ten horned beast system. Then we see another beast coming up out of the earth (America) having two horns like a lamb, but speaking like a dragon. This beast exercised all the power of the first beast, and caused the first beast to be worshiped, and caused there to be made an image to the first beast. Then all who would not, or will not worship that image will be killed. (The image of course, is your ecumenical council of organized churches, the only ones that will be recognized by the power structure of society in the very last days.) Now verse 16, “And he (here comes the mark) causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save (or except) he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: (the beast man) for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred three score and six (666). In various other messages, we have printed a little diagram showing how the words on the Pope’s crown, in their Roman numeral equivalents, work out to a perfect 666. That, along with what we have revealed to us from Daniel, Revelation, and actual history, leaves no doubt whatsoever that the Antichrist, the man of sin, the false prophet, the beast man, and the son of perdition is none other than the Roman Catholic Pope, the man who supposedly sits in the chair of the apostle Peter to whom Jesus committed the keys of the kingdom of heaven. People from every nation call him father, and consider him to be the holiest man upon the face of the earth. But we who know the truth can think of little more than the fact that, one day in the very near future, the man who holds that office will be the literal Antichrist, incarnated by the very devil himself. I would not go so far as to say the present Pope is the man that will fulfill those scriptures, but I will say this much. He is a perfect pattern of the one that will, for that man will first have to win the confidence of political leaders of the world, in order to get them to accept him as the man to arbitrate and oversee their great peace covenant that many nations will sign, including Israel. As I have already stated, I believe there are people living right today, that will see the windup of this whole thing. Some of them will even live to see that sweet talking, peace loving, baby kissing Pope, turn into a ruthless killer, and exalt himself above the God of heaven, demanding to be worshiped as God.
PREACHING THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL
Now we have established the fact, that the 3rd woe is in connection with the persecution of Israel, but let us be sure we understand that the woe is not directed to the woman element of that day, for she is in hiding, and cannot be touched by the Antichrist and his henchmen. The woe is to the Jews in dispersion around the world, and also to the Gentile foolish virgins. The woman, as seen in verse 6, of chapter 12, fleeing into the wilderness, is that spiritual element that has been awakened by the ministry of those two Jewish prophets, or witnesses whose primary function is to seal the 144,000 servants of God in their foreheads. That means, they will receive a revelation of the true Messiah they have looked for, and will receive the Holy Ghost, which is the only permanent seal that a person can have, spiritually speaking. But naturally the 144,000 Jewish servants of God will not be the only one’s that hear the prophesying of the two witnesses, and they will not be the only ones to believe what they hear. There will be a large element of men, women, and boys and girls in the nation at that time, that also believe, and receive the Holy Ghost. These are the ones that will flee from Israel by the middle of that week, and hide out for the full length of time the Antichrist reigns, where they will be protected, and cared for, according to preparations that God has already made for them. They will hide while the 144,000 servants will go out into the nations preaching the everlasting gospel to Jews in dispersion, according to Revelation 14:6. But their gospel will not only be heard by spiritual Jews in dispersion, it will be heard by those Gentile foolish virgins also. At least we can say, These are the two elements of people in the nations of the world, that receive the message of these servants of God. Of course, we have said many times before, their gospel will not be the same as what we have called “the gospel of Jesus,” during this age of grace, but it will be the last preaching that the inhabitants of the world will ever hear. Verse 6, says that this gospel is to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, so let us read a few verses, and see exactly what they preach. When the middle of that week arrives, and the old Antichrist goes on the rampage, these servants of God will scatter back to the nations, Saying with a loud voice, (14:7) Fear God, and give glory to Him; (not to that old Antichrist over there in the temple, in Jerusalem,) for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters. (Now this is written as though it is angelic beings doing the preaching, but we know that angels do not preach; they only assist those whom God has chosen to do the preaching. So notice as we read verse 8, and the verses following.) And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, (spiritual Babylon) that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. (Old ancient Babylon never did anything like that. Only the Catholic church, that old antichrist church system, called babylon because the word Babylon speaks of confusion and captivity, and it is that apostate system that has caused all nations to drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.) And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, (remember what that is) and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God. (The wine of that old apostate system is her doctrines, and anyone who drinks her wine will have to drink the wine of God’s wrath, when he pours it out upon all ungodly mankind that has rejected His truth when they heard it.) Which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation, and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.” Now, Saints: This is what that 144,000 servants of God are going to be proclaiming throughout the nations during the last 3 ½ years of that prophetic week of time, and as a result of it, Jews in dispersion, as well as Gentile foolish virgins, will be made aware of the decision that is before them. Either they will refuse the mark of the beast, hold to their faith in God, and be martyred, which will assure them eternal life, or they will accept the mark of the beast and be damned forever. By the middle of that week, there will be four distinct elements of Jewish people. You will have the 144,000 Jewish preachers; then the element in hiding, called the woman, but there will also be those in dispersion among the nations, that will be martyred at the hands of the Antichrist for refusing to accept his mark, and the fourth element are those political Jews that have signed the covenant with the Antichrist, and actually rejoiced when he had the two prophets killed. This last element will be the ones that will have to drink of the wine of the wrath of God, along with all the other ungodly people of the world.
PROTECTED BY THE SEAL OF GOD
Let me clarify another point that sometimes causes questions from people. Some will ask what happens to the 144,000 servants of God, will they eventually be killed? No. They will not be killed. They will go right into the Millennium with Jesus and all the other saints that are preserved alive. They will be protected by the power of the Holy Ghost. Only those whom God allows to die, can die, or be killed during that time. Even when the bottomless pit is opened, and hell is turned loose upon earth, those spirits are not permitted to kill anyone. They are commanded to torture all those who have not the seal of God, but they are forbidden to kill those that they torture. I am just reminding you that God is still in control, even though hell is turned loose upon earth; therefore only those whom God will allow to be killed, can be killed, and He will not allow these 144,000 men to be killed. They have a work to do. Maybe we should go back to the first verse of chapter 14, and take a closer look at these men, and remember, according to chapter 7, they are twelve thousand men, from each of the twelve tribes of Israel. “And I looked, and lo, a Lamb stood on Mount Zion, and with Him an hundred Forty and four thousand, having His Father’s name. And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. (That lets us know they have never been defiled by any religious system. They have no man made traditions from these antichrist systems lying in the back of their minds, that they have to get rid of; therefore they are clean before God, and called virgins.) These are they which follow the Lamb withersoever he goeth. (That simply means that they are led by the spirit of God, so do not try to picture this great throng of men following a literal lamb around.) These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.” I believe you can see that this is a very select group of Jewish men, that God has called, for a very special work, and even though verse 6 sounds as though a mighty angel is flying through the air preaching the everlasting gospel to every nation, please remember this. God has never used angels to preach to mankind, and He will not do it in the week of Daniel either. On the other hand, angels do work in conjunction with men, so we must see this 144,000 men who have just been sealed with the Holy Ghost, and with a revelation of who Jesus Christ really is, as the preachers that preach the everlasting gospel to every nation of people, during the last half of that week. Not only do they preach the everlasting gospel: they also pronounce judgment upon apostate religion, the whore and all her daughters. That actually incorporates chapters 17 and 18. In verse 2, of chapter 18 you find the same words that are here in chapter 14, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen.”
THE FIRST RESURRECTION
Now since we have gone this far, let us just go on over to chapter 20, verse 4, where these martyred Jewish and Gentile saints are resurrected prior to the Millennium, so they may reign with Christ and His bride during that one thousand years. It has to be those martyred during the great tribulation, for there has never been another time in the history of man, that anyone has been faced with a demand to worship the image to the beast, nor to take the mark of the beast, except during the last half of that week of trouble. Let us read it; at least the last part of verse 4, “And I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived AND REIGNED WITH CHRIST A THOUSAND YEARS.” Just one more verse here, verse 5, “But the rest of the dead lived NOT again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.” Now we have said many times, The first resurrection is in three phases, the first phase being 1900 years ago, when Jesus and many of the Old Testament saints were resurrected. The second phase will be when the rapture of the bride church takes place before the great tribulation, and the third phase will be after the great tribulation, when all those tribulation saints are resurrected to reign with Christ a thousand years, in what we commonly refer to as the Millennial reign of Christ. That will be the one thousand years of righteous rule of Jesus Christ, from the throne of King David, while the devil is chained up. The earth will be repopulated by mortal beings that escaped the wrath of the Old Antichrist, and were judged worthy, to pass into the Millennium for that purpose. This is the judgment seen in the 25th chapter of Matthew, beginning in verse 31. When the great tribulation is over, and Jesus has intervened in the battle of Armageddon, there will still be souls left alive from every nation, that will have to be judged, and either allowed to live during the Millennium and repopulate the earth, or be instantly killed, if they are found unworthy. If you read the rest of that chapter, you will find that they are condemned, and assigned to the lake of fire, but they will not actually be cast into the lake of fire until the great white throne judgment is set, one thousand years later, when all the wicked that have ever lived, will be resurrected, judged, and cast into the lake of fire. You can read that in Revelation 20: 10-15. In Matthew 25, no one is cast into the lake of fire then; they only have that judgment pronounced upon them, and they are slain, to take their place with all the rest of the wicked dead, and await their final disposition in the lake of fire. Now, there are always some who will say, Bro. Jackson: How do we know this judgment in Matthew 25 is for the purpose you have stated? So let us read a few verses, beginning with verse 31, and I believe you will see it clearly. Actually verse 31 tells us when it will be. “When the Son of man (Jesus Christ) SHALL COME IN HIS GLORY, AND ALL THE HOLY ANGELS WITH HIM, (We all know when He is coming back to earth in His glory, do we not? That is at the end of the great tribulation, when He comes to rule and reign for one thousand years upon the throne of David.) Then shall He sit upon the THRONE OF HIS GLORY: and before Him shall be gathered all nations: (those that remain alive from all nations) and He shall separate them one from another, AS A SHEPHERD divideth his sheep from the goats. And He shall set the sheep (those worthy to live) on His right hand, but the goats on the left. THEN shall the KING say unto them on His right hand. Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” That is all I am going to read now, but you can read it later, if you are not familiar with it, and you will see that the selection is made, based upon how they have treated His brethren under certain circumstances. That reveals the true nature of the individuals. During that dark tribulation time, many people will be faced with the decision, whether to help those whom the Lord refers to as His brethren, or whether to refuse to help them, and their decision then, will determine the outcome of this judgment right here. Those tribulation saints will not all be martyred the same day, so there will be a lot of opportunity for others to minister to them during the weeks and months before they are finally martyred.
MAN’S UTOPIA MUST WAIT
Let me go back to Revelation 10 now, for we have covered a lot of scriptures that deal with events that will take place after chapter 10 is fulfilled, so I feel that we should come back now and refresh our memory on the main thought of this message. What is the mystery of God? The world we live in, is in a turmoil today. All of natural minded mankind is concerned about peace, prosperity, and equality, and all the things that would make this old world a utopia. Well, there is one thing sure, according to the Bible, there is not going to be any utopia here on earth, until after Jesus Christ comes back literally, and sets up His Millennial kingdom. The Bible does not picture natural mankind, as ever being able to bring this world into that kind of an era. It seems that everything man does with that in mind, only makes things worse, instead of better. Do you know why? Because it takes the wisdom of God to accomplish that, and mankind is fast fleeing from the ways of God. Satan will never allow mankind to accomplish what they strive for. That is why he has to be chained up for a thousand years. It would be a wonderful thing, if mankind could come to terms of peace the world over, and everyone enjoy the things that God has created, without always having to be prepared for war, but that will never come, until Jesus Christ Himself comes back to earth, for mankind in general, always has selfish motives for what they do. As for human governments, Communism tries to picture capitalism as a devil, and democracy as something completely selfish and evil, and the decay of that form of government is giving them grounds for their accusations. But when you consider what this country once had, before corruption moved into the high places, it was the best form of human government man has ever been able to devise. Communism has never done one thing to help capitalism, it has always been the opposite. Everything Communism has achieved, they have always had to steal it from the realm of capitalism. Their scientific knowledge has either been bought or stolen. Just every once in a while we hear of another traitor being caught selling our secrets to the highest bidder. Therefore that very kind of selfishness will always cause mankind to fall short of what everyone would like to see, peace and prosperity for everyone. It all started in the garden of Eden, this downward course of mankind, and it will continue so, until Jesus Himself chains up the devil, and rules the world with a rod of iron.
DO NOT DEPEND ON ASSUMPTIONS
Let us reread our text scripture, Revelation 10:7, “But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as He hath declared to His servants the prophets.” I believe we have sufficiently established the fact, that the word voice as used in this verse, pertains to the message delivered to this age by the seventh angel, (the seventh church age messenger) and not to the audible sound of his voice. We have looked at different verses of scripture, that speak of a mystery, and tried to show you the difference between the usage of them, and we have gone into the scriptures to show you what follows the age that this mystery of God actually pertained to. So let us just look at a few things that I believe will be of interest concerning these things also. Certainly you who follow the teaching of Bro. William Branham, believe that he was the prophet messenger to the age of Laodicea, and I have to confess this, In 1963, when he stood night after night, bringing forth the revelation of the seals, many of us thought we were then living in the days of Revelation 10, the total setting. But 19 years have passed since the prophet messenger was taken from us, and 21 years have passed since he preached the revelation of the first six seals, and the seventh seal still has not been opened and revealed, and the first six verses of chapter 10, still have not been fulfilled, so it just goes to prove, that we are subject to assume a lot of things when the anointing of God is so strong among us, and things seem to be moving in a certain direction. The sad part is, Many who made those assumptions are still trying to prove that what they only assumed, really took place. They have laid their Bibles aside, taken an arm full of Spoken Word books, and hit the road, looking for people who will listen to them, and support their fanatical ideas. They present Bro. William Branham to all who will allow them to, as the very Son of man, which title belongs only to Jesus Christ Himself. Some of them call him, the Elohim, and some are even baptizing in his name. They even place him on the mount of transfiguration with Moses and Elijah, and all such as that. They refuse to accept the fact that the seventh seal has not yet been opened, so they constantly search the pages of those seal books, looking for the revelation of the seven thunders, which cannot be uttered until after the seventh seal is opened and revealed. Therefore some of them have had Jesus Christ off of the mercy seat for over 21 years now. Which, if that were true, no one could have been saved during all of this time since then. Some of them have even had children believe and accept the Lord during that time, and they are still blind to the truth. According to them, Bro. William Branham finished everything that pertains to the Gentiles, while he was still alive, so there is nothing left for anyone else to do. It is a pitiful situation, but God has allowed it to go on like that all these years, so we who do know the truth, just have to be thankful to God, that we were not caught in the same snare of the devil, that they were. I sat right there in the Branham tabernacle, and heard what our precious brother preached and taught, and I respected him as a person, as well as a true servant of God. But I could never allow myself to exalt him above what I believed God had called him to be, and to do. I truly believe that he was the Laodicean church age messenger, and that he was the Elijah of Malachi 4:5 & 6, to fulfill the B part of those two verses. In other words, He had that God identifying spirit of Elijah upon him, for the purpose of turning the heart of the children of this age, back to the faith of their Pentecostal church fathers, before the coming of the dreadful day of the Lord. He presented the Jesus of the Bible in a way that I had never heard it before, and he made Him stand head and shoulders above every other man that has ever lived, spiritually speaking. But there was no reason in the world, for me to ever look to him as God. He was my brother. I knew him personally, better than most of these fellows that run to and fro, claiming to know everything there was to know about him. I have seen him act just as human as any man among us, and I have seen him so anointed of the Spirit of God, that he was under the complete control of that Spirit, and I knew how to respect him in each setting. Dear brothers and sisters: I have been accused of many things by these heretics, but my conscience is clear in every one of them. I have always given Bro. William Branham every place that God gave him, and I have never yet accused him of making a mistake, as some say that I do, when I prove by the Bible that he spoke dual statements on certain subjects. I have always believed that God allowed him to do that, to give these statement preachers something to run with, and to show them up before revelated saints, as being without revelation themselves. There is one thing that I am completely convinced of, That man had a message for the true church in this Laodicean age, and those who have a spiritual ear are hearing it, and the rest are either worshiping him, or calling him a false prophet, generally speaking, of course. This Laodicean age is the one that is rich, and increased with goods, and has need of nothing, (so they think) and are not even aware of the fact that they are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked, just like the local church in Asia Minor, in 96 A.D., when John wrote to her these very words. People of the church world in general, seem to feel like God is interested only in those of intellectual abilities. Therefore they would not listen to a preacher like me for two minutes, unless God had a purpose in it. That is why I feel that we ought not try to tell everyone we meet, everything we know. If God has not set the stage, and given the necessary anointing, it is just like casting our precious pearls before swine, or to put it more bluntly, like throwing expensive jewelry into an old muddy hog pen. Those hogs have no respect for nice jewelry; all they care about is some stinking old slop to stick their nose into. They will just literally tromp your expensive jewelry into the mud, and that is exactly the way a lot of people do the truth, when it is pitched out before them, without God directing us to do so.
PETER–LED BY THE SPIRIT
Now as we have stressed over and over, The mystery of God, as referred to in Revelation 10:7, pertains to what God was going to do for Gentiles, and he had His prophets of old, write about it, without ever giving any of them a revelation of what it pertained to, so even though He declared it to them, He did not reveal it to them, therefore we who are the beneficiaries of the contents of that mystery, can now look back, and know what those many scriptures pertained to. But saints, please remember this, That picture was not yet completed when the seventh church age angel began to sound his literal, audible voice. That is why we want you to understand that the word voice, does not pertain only to the verbal sounds he uttered, but rather to the message he delivered to the church in this age. It is really ironic when you stop to think about it; In the scrolls of the Jewish people, were the promises God made to the Gentile people, and none of them understood what those promises pertained to, and then, two thousand years this side of what God did to fulfill those promises made to Gentiles, we Gentiles have a prophetic letter, telling us what God is going to do for the Jews, and we do understand it. It has not always been so though, our forefathers carried this letter for 1900 years, without very much revelation of what it contained, and if we were not the generation that will live to see it fulfilled, there would be very little purpose in us having a revelation of it. But by knowing what is ahead, the bride church will have ample opportunity to prepare herself to meet her Bridegroom, when He comes for her, to take her to the wedding supper. As for the mystery of God, that was hidden from men of other ages, even the apostle Peter did not yet have a revelation of it, when he went, by the direction of the Holy Ghost, to the household of Cornelius, and preached the gospel of Jesus Christ to Gentiles for the very first time. It was strictly against the human will of the apostle Peter to be seen among Gentiles, much less to preach the gospel to them. But the Holy Ghost directed him, to arise, and go with the three men Cornelius had sent to inquire about him; and to doubt nothing, so he went with them, knowing only that Cornelius was expecting to hear words from him. Since he had no revelation that these Gentiles were to be partakers of the grace and mercy of God also, there was no way he could prepare a sermon ahead of time, so he just followed instructions, and went with the three men. But as Cornelius began to relate to him the vision he had, and as Peter thought back on the vision he had, while praying, back at the house of Simon the tanner, and when Cornelius finished relating his experience, Peter just had to do what came natural for him to do; he started preaching the gospel to the, and even though they received it, and God vindicated it by giving them the Holy Ghost, what was written in the scriptures concerning what God would do for Gentiles was still a mystery.
A SOVEREIGN GOD AT WORK
Let us go to the 10th chapter of Acts, for a look at how God opened up a door for Gentiles to receive the gospel, without first instructing anyone concerning this mystery. It was many many months after that, before Paul and Barnabas became provoked by those Jews at Antioch, (which contradicted them, and blasphemed) and said to them, “It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoke to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.” During that time between, what God would do for Gentiles concerning the gospel, still remained a mystery. No doubt those Jews would ask one another, What do you think about what happened down in Caesarea, at the house of Cornelius? What do you suppose that means? Well, let us just look at how God worked that out. Peter had just prayed for a man that had been bedridden eight years with palsy, and he was healed, and certain ones close by, in a town called Joppa, heard what had happened there in Lydda just about the time a saint named Dorcas had become ill, and died. So they sent for Peter to come down to Joppa immediately, and when he arrived there, they led him into an upper chamber where Dorcas lay dead, and all those that she had sewed for, were standing around weeping. But Peter put them all out of the room, and kneeled down by the side of the bed, and started praying. Then when the anointing of God directed him, he turned to her and said, Tabitha, arise. (Tabitha is interpreted, Dorcas.) And she opened her eyes, and sat up in the bed. Peter then took her by the hand, and lifted her up, and presented her to her friends that were waiting outside. Naturally that caused a great lot of excitement around Joppa, and many believed on the Lord because of it, and that kept Peter there at Joppa for many days, and he stayed in the home of Simon a tanner. That is where he was when Cornelius had the vision we are going to read about, here in chapter 10. “There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band, a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always. He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius. And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God. And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner; whose house is by the sea side: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do.” Right there, is a verse of scripture, that ought to convince anyone, that angels do not preach the gospel. I am sure you will all agree, that if that angel could say what he did to Cornelius, he could have said anything else just as well. But when it comes to preaching the gospel: God has ordained that men do that. Therefore the angel just simply told Cornelius where he could find a man that could tell him what to do, and at that very moment, there was no possible way anyone could have persuaded that apostle Peter to go into the house of a Gentile man, and certainly not the house of a Roman army officer. But we will see how God prepared old Peter for what he was about to be called upon to do. Verse 7, “And when the angel which spake unto Cornelius was departed, he called two of his household servants, and a devout soldier of them that waited on him continually; And when he had declared all these things unto them, he sent them to Joppa. (Now we will see how God prepared Peter for what was ahead of him.) On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour: And he became very hungry, and would have eaten; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance, and saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beast, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. (There were all things that no Jew would ever eat.) And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat. But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean. And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common. This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.” God knows how to get our attention, how to break down all barriers, and how to get us into the place where He can use us. He gets right to the heart of the matter. Now while Peter doubted in himself what this vision which he had seen should mean, behold, the men which were sent from Cornelius had made inquiry for Simon’s house, and stood before the gate, and called; and asked whether Simon, which was surnamed Peter, were lodged there. While Peter thought on the vision, the Spirit said unto him, Behold, three men seek thee. Arise therefore, and get thee down, and go with them, doubting nothing: for I have sent them. (That was all Peter had to hear) Then Peter went down to the men which were sent unto him from Cornelius; and said, Behold, I am he whom ye seek: what is the cause wherefore ye are come?” They told him how Cornelius was a man that feared God, and that an angel had appeared to him in a vision, and told him to send for a man named Simon Peter, and he would tell him what he should do, and by the time they had related the whole story to him, Peter had invited them to come in and spend the night, and the next day, they departed for Caesarea, the three men, Peter and certain other brethren from Joppa. When they arrived at the house of Cornelius the next day, they found that Cornelius had called all his kinfolks and close friends together, and they were all there waiting for them. When they were entering Cornelius fell down at Peter’s feet, and worshiped him.” (Just like they do the Pope of Rome.) Verse 26, “But Peter took him up, saying, Stand up; I myself also am a man, And as he talked with him, he went in, and found many that were come together. And he (Peter) said unto them, Ye know how it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath showed me that I should not call any man common or unclean. Therefore came I unto you without gainsaying, as soon as I was sent for: I ask therefore for what intent ye have sent for me? And Cornelius said, Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing. And said, Cornelius, thy prayer is heard, and thine alms are had in remembrance in the sight of God.” He finished relating his story to Peter, and then said, “Therefore we are all here present before God, to hear all things that are commanded thee of God.” The strange thing here, is the fact that God had not told Peter anything to say to those Gentiles; He had shown him a vision, in which He impressed upon him, that what He (God) had cleansed, Peter should not call it common, nor unclean. That was all Peter knew, except that the Spirit had said, Go with those men, doubting nothing, for I have sent them. Therefore when Cornelius said, Tell us all things that God hath commanded thee, the only thing Peter knew to do, was preach the gospel to them. Preaching the gospel was his full time occupation in those days, so he just supposed, that if God had sent him there to the house of this Gentile man, and especially since he had been shown this vision himself, God surely wanted him to tell them about Jesus Christ, the Saviour. Verse 34, “Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respector of persons: But in ever nation he that feareth Him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with Him. The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (He is Lord of all:) That word I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached; How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with Him. And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree: Him God raised up the third day, and showed Him openly; Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before of God, even to us, who did eat and drink with Him after He rose from the dead. And He commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is He which was ordained of God to be the judge of the quick (the living) and dead. To Him give all the prophets witness; that through his name WHOSOEVER believeth in Him shall receive remission of sins. (Brother! They really picked up on that whosoever, and their faith reached out to God.) While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. (Notice now) And they of the circumcision (That was Jews that came with Peter which believed) were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God.” Some people who believe that speaking in tongues is the initial evidence of the baptism of the Holy Ghost, like to use this verse along with Acts 2:4, as proof. But just merely speaking in tongues is no proof that a person is filled with the Holy Ghost, for devils speak with tongues also. As a matter of fact, these demon spirits are able to duplicate almost everything that the Holy Spirit does. You can confirm that by reading over in Exodus, where Moses was given certain signs to show Pharoah, and his magicians were able to duplicate everything, except give life. That is why we say, The real evidence of the Holy Ghost in a person’s life, is whether they believe the revealed word of God or not, for if the Spirit of God be in you, He will not reject, and deny His own word. You can go into a lot of these churches, and they will just be singing, and dancing, and shouting, and speaking in tongues for all they are worth, and it looks like God is really in that place. But you let some true saint of God stand up, and testify, and mention that God is One, and not a trinity, and the whole bunch will turn on that person like a pack of wild dogs after a rabbit. So do not try to convince me that those people are filled with the Holy Ghost, no matter how much they speak in tongues. God allowed these Gentiles to have the same manifestations, the Jews had, on the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Ghost fell on them, and He did it that way for a reason, because He wanted a testimony out of what was taking place there at Caesarea. But do not try to gauge everything you see anywhere else, by what took place there, that day, for Satan has had nineteen hundred years to duplicate all of that, and you believe me, he has done his job well. Church houses are filled with these counterfeits, that love to shout and speaking in tongues, but they will not listen to the word of God being preached, five minutes, without getting stomping mad. Well, Peter knew these Gentiles had received the Holy Ghost, so he asked the question, “Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?” And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Like I have already said, This was an isolated event among the Gentiles, for it was three or four years after that, before Paul and Barnabas were in the Jewish synagogue at Antioch, and were invited by the elders to speak, after the reading of the law and the prophets, and when Paul stood up, and preached Christ to them, the Gentiles that were present wanted to hear more. They asked Paul and Barnabas to preach to them, the next Sabbath day. The following week, practically the whole city came out to hear the gospel preached, but when those Jewish leaders saw that, jealousy filled their hearts, and they began to speak against those things that Paul and Barnabas preached, and actually blasphemed. That caused Paul and Barnabas to become very stern with them, and very bold, and they said to them. “It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.” We are in Acts 13 now, so notice verses 47 & 48, and you will see that this thing was not just done out of pure anger, but rather by a command of the Lord. When Paul said, “Lo, we turn to the Gentiles.” He went ahead, and said, “For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles. (He was quoting part of Isaiah 42:6, 49:6, and also Luke 2:32, where Simeon prophesied over Jesus, when Joseph and Mary brought Him to the temple, to present Him to the Lord.) That thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.” Even though Peter was the first to preach the gospel directly to the Gentiles. Paul was actually the chosen vessel of the Lord, to preach the gospel to them, when it came time for God to turn to them with preeminence. You can read that in Acts 9:15, where the Lord answered Ananias, when he was hesitant about going to pray for Saul, after he had been struck down by the Lord, on the road to Damascus. In verse 13, Ananias said, Lord I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints in Jerusalem: And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name. But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel.” Paul was not immediately aware, as to what extent he was to be a light unto the Gentiles, but by the time he and Barnabas had that experience at Antioch, he was beginning to see some things, and after that, Gentiles really came into the picture. Then in the Roman epistle, chapter 11, verse 13, which is 15 years later, he refers to himself as the apostle to the Gentiles. The mystery of God concerning what He would do for Gentiles, was well in effect by that time, but the apostle Paul never lost his love and concern for his own people, the Jews. Their salvation was always a heavy burden upon him.
SOME EDUCATED PEOPLE SELL THE GOSPEL
Well, here we are more than 1900 years this side of the time when Paul and Barnabas turned to the Gentiles with the gospel, and we can see today, that Gentiles have treated the gospel just like the Jews did the law of Moses. They have ritualized it, dressed it up with all sorts of man made traditions, and they sell it to the highest bidders, just like real estate, and automobiles. What started out in simplicity, is now looked upon as something so complicated, that only highly educated people can understand it, and teach it, and if you do not have those diplomas, many people who profess to be Christians, will not even listen to you. But brothers and sisters, if you think it is bad now, just wait a little while. At least we can still meet together here, whenever we choose to do so, but the day will come, when only organized churches will be allowed to operate, so let us appreciate what we now have. Be thankful that you know who God is, and that you know Him personally, and that you have something within your soul, that man cannot take away from you. They can close up our places of worship. They can put us in jail, and even torture us, as Christians have been tortured in the past, but whatever you have in your heart as a revelation, imparted to you by the Spirit of God, can never be taken away from you.. Hallelujah! It will stay with you to the end. If you have a revelation of the Godhead, ten thousand demons, could never exert enough pressure on you, to get you to believe that God is three persons. When the devil got the church off course in the second age, it was not done by changing the mind of those early saints. No. He had to work on the next generation coming up, for those old saints held to what was revealed to them by the Spirit of God, right to their dying day. Well, what about this mystery of God? Is it still a mystery? It is still a mystery to orthodox Jews, but it should not be a mystery to Christians who will take the time to study the word of God, for we are plainly told what that mystery is. In his Ephesian epistle, Paul is reminding them of how God made know unto him by revelation, this mystery. He had written them of it briefly at an earlier time, and in chapter 3, verse 4, he says, “Whereby when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ, which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto His holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel.” This is the mystery of God referred to in our text, Revelation 10:7. I realize that there are other scriptures in the New Testament that refer to the mystery of God, but we are dealing with the mystery of God that was spoken and written by prophets of old, but understood by none of them. In Colossians 2:2, we find Paul speaking of the mystery of God, but in this instance, he is referring to the Godhead, and we all know, the prophets of God in the old Testament had no problem with the Godhead; they all knew God was one, and that He was a sovereign Spirit. Then there is the verse that speaks of Christ in you, the hope of glory, but as we said already, This is a part of it, but this is not the mystery of God, spoken of in Revelation 10:7, as being declared to His servants the prophets.
WHAT GENTILES HAVE BECOME HEIRS TO
Let us just look at the 2nd chapter of Ephesians for a few minutes, where Paul is writing to this church that is actually the model church among all the others. It had both Jews and Gentiles in it, but the major part was Gentiles, so that accounts for Paul writing like he did. We have already mentioned part of this, but let us begin in verse 11, and look at a few verses. “Wherefore remember, that ye being in times past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called uncircumcision by that which is called circumcision in the flesh made by hands; That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” Paul uses some Jewish terminology here, referring to Gentiles a uncircumcision, and to Jews as the circumcision, because up to a certain point in time, Jews always looked upon Gentiles as uncircumcised heathen, filthy and unclean, something untouchable. They treated them almost the same way they treated lepers. They could see nothing in any of them, that God would ever care anything about. They had no revelation at all, on any of the mentions of Gentiles, in the writings of their prophets. The Jews kept all the rituals of the law, and thought they were really doing God a service. In their own eyes, they were, a holy people: simply because they were keeping faithfully, all the rituals of the law. But in the eyes of God; they were not a holy people ; because their hearts were not right. In the 23rd chapter of Matthew, you can find where Jesus really got on to a bunch of them one day, because of their hypocrisy. Starting in verse 23, let us read some of what He said to them. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy and faith: these ought ye to have done. (In other words, what they had been doing.) And not to leave the other undone.” Saints: We just simply cannot buy favor with God. He is looking first, for a pure heart, and wherever He finds that, the outward display of righteousness will be there without fail. Therefore He says to them, “Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and the platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchres, (whitewashed tombs) which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” That gives you a look at what Jesus thought of the spiritual leaders of the Jews, at His first advent. They had the covenants of promise, that Paul referred to here in his Ephesian epistle, and should have been a holy people before God, but they had done with the law, just exactly what Gentiles have done with the gospel of Jesus Christ. They were very particular to see that every little detail was observed outwardly, according to their traditional interpretation of the law, but they did not have a true heart within them. That is why they stoned Stephen to death, and tried to stone Jesus many times before that. That is why Saul of Tarsus was on his way to Damascus to arrest Christians; he had been taught to deal with anyone this way, who failed to keep the law as they taught it, and claimed to serve God some other way. Well, this is that same Saul, 29 years after having met the Lord, on that trip to Damascus, now called Paul the apostle of Christ, instead of Saul of Tarsus, writing to Gentiles that have been converted from paganism, and reminding them of how in former times, Gentiles were aliens from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world. “But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” No doubt Paul was thinking about the time he went into Athens, Greece, and observed that the whole city was completely given over to idolatry. Those Greeks had a god for everything, hoping that in some way, they would be covered in every situation, and just for extra measure, they even had an altar dedicated to the UNKNOWN GOD. So when Paul got a chance to speak to them, he started by saying, “Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, Him declare I unto you.” In other words, just to paraphrase a little, Paul said, I want to tell you about his unknown God you have been ignorantly worshiping, this one you do not know a thing about. He is the God that created the world and all things therein, and He does not dwell in temples made with men’s hands. Neither will He be worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing. You can read the 17th chapter of Acts, and get the rest of what he said to those Greeks there that day, but let us get back to the point he is making to these saints at Ephesus. We are made nigh (brought close) by the blood of Christ. By direct spiritual knowledge, which has been imparted to us, we are now close enough to know how to fellowship with God. We no longer have to wonder if He hears us, or if He is real, for we know for sure that He is real, and that He hears every prayer of faith. Now verse 14. “For He (Jesus) is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us.” He is talking about Jews and Gentiles, what God has done through the shed blood of His only begotten Son, to break down that former barrier between them, and make them both one, one body in Christ. In order to understand this type of speech, we would have to go back almost two thousand years, to the city of Ephesus, and try to see this assembly of Christians that has been established by Paul, made up of both Jews and Gentiles. What kind of wall existed there? There were many Jews living in Ephesus, Jews in dispersion. They had settled in certain quarters of the city, built them a synagogue, and every Sabbath day they congregated together. But on the way to that synagogue, if they met a Gentile, they would step aside to let him pass, lest they get too close to an unclean thing. Well naturally those Gentiles would have feelings about the way those Jews acted. Who do they think they are, anyway? But remember, Even though they were far from Jerusalem, far from their holy place, they knew they had the law, and the commandments, and that they were supposed to be a holy people, and not touch anything unclean. Well, up to a certain point, that is true, but they have applied certain things to an extreme, yet they do not know it. That is why they would make sure they did not contact any Gentile person along the way. Well, after so long, the Gentiles began to understand why they acted like that; it is because of those traditional religious writings they have. The Gentiles got used to that kind of a situation, but that was that middle of wall of partition Paul was referring to. Naturally the middle wall existed because of the Jews’ interpretation of what God wanted them to be, and they just simply could not see this unclean bunch of Gentiles fitting into the picture. Naturally until God did something to change the situation, that wall remained there, and the Gentiles would just go right on making fun of those fanatical foreigners. They were foreigners to those Gentiles there. But listen, If one of those Gentiles got curious enough to step inside that synagogue on the Sabbath day, he then, was the foreigner. Every eye in the place was upon him. That condition existed until God Himself did something to change the situation, so let us read on. Verse 15, “Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, (the enmity was those hard feelings between the two peoples,) even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain (both Jew and Gentile) one new man, so making peace; And that He might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: and came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. (Gentiles were far off, and Jews were nigh.) For through Him (Jesus Christ) we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye (Gentiles) are no more strangers and foreigners, bur fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.” The body they were both reconciled in, was the body of the sacrifice that was offered at Calvary for the sins of the whole world, both Jew and Gentile, God took from the pages of their law, all those things written about Gentiles, that had always remained a great mystery to every New, and began to fulfill them in the lives of Gentiles. He gave Gentiles a revelation of the God of the Jews, and of how the God of the Jews became incarnate in the flesh of the person of His only begotten Son. That was the revelation Paul preached to Gentiles everywhere he went. But in every area of his journeys, Paul always preached the gospel to the Jews in dispersion there, before he would go to the Gentiles. Naturally, not everyone that heard the gospel believed. Neither of the Jews, nor of the Gentiles, but in every place, those who did believe the gospel, and accept Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord, could sit down together in the same meeting place and fellowship one another. They could then, for the very first time, see each other as brothers and sisters of the common faith. That is how God took two realms of people, and made one new man. That old spirit of enmity was slain forever. Jews could actually rejoice, and give glory to God, for what they saw Him doing for Gentiles. That caused Paul to say, “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of god.” Remember, Paul was not writing this letter to the city of Ephesus; it was only to those who had obtained like faith, and were born into the family of God. They were now a part of the great building of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, and Jesus Christ Himself is the chief corner stone in that building. Paul uses the term building, or uses terminology that speaks of a building, making the point, that every building that is built to stand, has to be built upon a proper foundation, and with the proper materials throughout, as well as having the proper dimensions and angles. In other words, What Paul refers to as a building, is put together by the revelation of what was written by those Old Testament prophets. The apostles of Jesus Christ took those Old Testament prophecies, and fashioned a building out of them, that God Himself is pleased to dwell in. Such a building properly fitted together, groweth into an holy temple in the Lord, or as it is referred to in the 14th chapter of John’s gospel, many mansions. The house of God has many mansions, but those mansions are His redeemed children, that He dwells in. We have become an habitation for the Spirit of God. Hallelujah! I thank God for a revelation of His precious word. That is more precious to me than thirty million dollars would be.
DO YOU HAVE ETERNAL LIFE?
Brothers and Sisters: I believe we have just about covered this mystery of God, spoke of in our text, and I believe we have presented a pretty good picture of what will follow, when that mystery among the Gentiles is finally completed, and god turns His attention fully back to the Jews, back to the people the gospel of Jesus Christ was first presented to. There is nothing we could say, that would straighten out the confused lives of a lot of people who claim to follow Bro. William Branham’s teaching, for they have already been taken over completely, by a spirit of idolatry. They have robbed God, and they have robbed the Son of God in whom this sovereign Spirit dwells, and they have attributed to Bro. William Branham, honor that belongs only to God, or to His only begotten Son Jesus, the Christ. What they have done is even worse than what the Catholics did, when they made the Pope the Vicar of the Son of God. At least the man they look to is alive. He speaks to them, and teaches that Antichrist doctrine to the, thereby deceiving them. But this bunch of idolaters follow their own imaginations, and have made Bro. William Branham their God, something he would have never intentionally said anything to promote. He confessed often, that he was only a man, and as helpless as any one of us, unless God saw fit to anoint him. How many times have some of you heard him say, Don’t look to me, I can’t help you; look to God, I am your Brother? Therefore let me say once again, He was a prophet. He was the messenger to the age of Laodicea. God anointed him like no other man, we have hard of except Jesus, and he was the seventh angel of Revelation 10:7, and it is the message he brought to this age, that is going to finish this mystery of God as declared to His servants the prophets. But he is dead now, and will lie in the ground until the apostle Paul, Peter, and all the other saints who have gone by way of the grave, are resurrected, and caught up to glory. Therefore let me say to all who will ever hear this message, or read it in the Contender. If Bro. William Branham is your God, you are spiritually dead, and when the last breath of this physical life goes out of you, your old body will rot in the ground, your soul will find its place in hell, and the only thing left for you, is to be resurrected at the great white throne judgment, and cast alive into the lake of fire, just like all the other unbelievers of every other age. You have missed the whole purpose for which the Malachi 4:5-6 prophet was sent to this age. You have not been restored to the faith of the fathers; you have deceived yourselves into believing another gospel, and a the apostle Paul plainly said in Galatians 1:8, Let such a person be accursed. In other words, cut off without any hope. But to you saints who love the Lord Jesus Christ, and look for His coming, and appreciate what God did for us through the ministry of Bro. William Branham, let me say this, Stay with the Bible, regardless of what anyone may present to you, for in its pages is found the only hope we have for eternal life with god. Its message is still true, and its rewards for those who believe its message are still the same as it has always been. In this life, we will have the Spirit of God to lead us, protect us, and to provide for us, and then there will come the time when we will rule and reign with Jesus Christ, (the only Savior mankind has), when He comes back to earth to rule and reign as Kings of kings, and Lord of lords. May He be praised forever! Hallelujah! I love him! Amen.