WE ARE STARTING THIS ISSUE WITH THE LAST THREE SENTENCES OF OUR AUGUST ISSUE JUST TO MAINTAIN CONTINUITY.
We can carry burdens, sometimes people will heap upon us until it becomes a health problem. There are people that like to see you go through things. I am not talking about saints of God, because they will stand with you. Just about everybody asked me as I went down the aisle this morning, how is your foot? I told them it was better, and it is. In this scripture he said, lift up now thine eyes. Now we are going to see something. The natural that Abraham saw is the spiritual that we see today. Paul said, now we look through a glass darkly, talking about the heavenly scene. But we are not looking at these things darkly this morning. I agree with Paul on saying what he saw was darkly, because he was looking into the heavenly realm. We don’t see it all, but we have a good explanation of it and a great revelation of it. The things I say that we are looking at today, is a clear picture. It is becoming clearer and clearer and clearer in peoples hearts and minds. I say again this morning, we are looking for a great visitation of God in Faith Assembly. Then these people out here that watch us from time to time, you will share it also. Do not ever get down so much on things with your health, that you cannot be an encouragement to somebody else. I remember years ago there was a brother, Bro. Higginbotham. He got cancer. The last person that visited him, when he left, he raised his hands to God, it won’t be long now. We sometimes have to be an encouragement to others even when we are down ourselves, in order for God to bless us. Do not ever let the devil see your mully-grubs. I say that because the Bible says, seeing that day approaching, begin to lift up your head and rejoice because your redemption is drawing nigh. People rejoice differently. As our sister was singing the song this morning, I know there are a lot of people that rejoiced in the song. I did it in another way, tears were in my eyes, because I felt something. Look at the picture of Moses, I don’t know how they knew, but somebody lifted his hands. The battle is not yours, the battle is God’s. The thing about it is, when the children of Israel were coming out of Egypt and they got on the other side of the Red Sea, when they got into the wilderness, then they began to have battles. There was Moses, better than eighty years old. They began to watch him and saw the battle was going so good because he had his hands lifted. Then some of the people that were around about him saw his hands begin to get tired and they began to go down. What did they do? They picked his arms up again. Rejoice. Today I had thoughts of what I wanted to see in the service this morning, but it is up to God whether it happens or not. Young people, you have an opportunity today. God has dealt in young lives, even in seven year old’s, right in this assembly there are children that are no older than that, that God is already dealing in their lives. Are you going to discourage them? Absolutely not. If they feel the Spirit of God in their lives, I am going to encourage them because I believe we are going to see God dealing in young peoples lives in that way. I never want to see separation. It is not a thing to rejoice about, to see separation. Nevertheless when you see unbelief, there has got to be separation. The thing about it is, when we begin to look at it with the natural eye, God cannot use that, it has to be something that goes deeper than that, it has got to get into your mind, it has to get into your heart. Old people used to have a mourner’s bench. They talked about praying through. I knew what that meant even as a child. It meant that they prayed until they got through to God. We are in the last roundup of God dealing with people, to make them to be what He expects them to be before the rapture. Lot looked, but it was on his own. He saw the well watered valleys. That was before God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. But now there is another occasion where somebody looks again. That is Abraham. God tells him to look. In other words, God is saying to him, you see that valley there, of Sodom, I am going to give that to you too. One of these days before long, it is going to be a fruitful place. There is going to be a stream of water come out from around the altar. Lift up thine eyes and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward. From where you are, every direction that you can see, as far as you can see, I am going to give it to you. I believe he was looking over into the Jordan Valley. I believe he was looking toward the Mediterranean. He was looking south toward Egypt. He was looking north toward where they are having all the trouble now, where that king is killing all his people, in Lebanon and northward. “For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.” God’s promise is not slack. Everything He promised, He will fulfill. God is not into negotiation. God does not negotiate His promise. God said, I will repay saith the Lord, whatsoever the canker worm, the caterpillar, all this has eaten, I will give to you. All the land which thou seest, I will give to thee and thy seed forever. “And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered.” Through the generations of time, there has been millions and millions of Jews, which were the seed of Abraham. I have a picture on the screen portraying Lot, then we will go to something else. This is the end result when you do things on your own. Or when I do things on my own, this is the end results of it. It has no good flavor to it. Young people, do not ever be ashamed of Him, don’t be ashamed to wear a dress that is decent. Don’t go to school and pull your dress up and double it over so that it will be short, that you may be popular. I heard someone say, someone who is grown up now, that they would go to school and pull their skirt up, and she said it was because she wanted people to see her beautiful figure. That figure will fade. That is the truth, I heard it. It is just the devil opening a trap for you. Well somebody will laugh at me. Let them laugh. You will have the last laugh. I remember Bro. Jackson telling about a young girl one time, that had never had a relationship with a man, other young girls she was talking to had. They laughed at her. She said to them, any time I ever want to, I can become like you, but you can never become like me. Young girls and young boys, there are all kinds of problems in this world today, because young people have violated their virginity, boys and girls. We want to talk about girls like that, but I remember a man from the last place I pastored in the Methodist Church. This man came to me and told me, my mom and dad told me, they had several boys, they told their boys, you boys be virgins too, the same as girls. You cannot help what has happened in the past, but I am trying to talk to some young people about the future. If you want the Spirit of God in you, do something about it. If you have already violated that trust this morning, I do not stand here to condemn you, God can forgive you and make you as though it had never happened. The devil’s job is to put guilt on people. You can become anything you want to today in this world system, but not many will become Christians. We have gotten to the place that this old world has become so lax, that nothing surprises us any more. Today I heard in the News, they are having a football game in Indianapolis. People can drink on the sidewalks in Indianapolis today, but tomorrow they cannot. Somebody is going to pay for this demonic possession. Some might like football, but that is not football, that is fool’s ball. People giving thousands of dollars for a ticket to watch a football game. They will stay at home to watch it on TV instead of going to church tonight. Where is their God? These things have become a god to Americans. Our president backed this Arab Spring. In Egypt, he backed it so much, there was a soccer game between the main school in Egypt, and a lower school. The lower school beat the main school, and there were seventy six people killed. It went from Arab Spring into soccer spring. Whenever God gets through with it, Egypt will have an altar in the middle of it. Just wait and see. That is what the Bible says and I will believe the Word of God before I will a bunch of politicians. What I say is not politically correct, but where he went was where he looked and this is what the world is looking like today, just like Sodom. Someone might say, Sodom, I don’t know what that means. Yes, you do, but if you do not, then read your Bible. “And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. Arise, (Now He is telling him something, Arise. Abraham was well into his 80’s then, and God is telling him to walk through the land. There is no age limit in God. He did not call Moses until he was eighty years old. He did not call Abraham until he was seventy five.) walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.” Right there, is God’s deed to Abraham. When I started pastoring Faith Assembly a little over seven years ago, some of them already had me as a feeble old man. I may look feeble this morning, but I am not. “Then Abram removed his tent.” Get up in your faith this morning and begin to walk, and begin to believe God. Don’t wait for the next bus load, or the next train load to move by the station. Move in faith today. Without faith it is impossible to please God. We are not in an old worn out religious system: we are in the family of God. Then Abraham removed his tent, not his house, he never did have a house, because he was always on the move. I was not ready to pastor Faith Assembly, I was sitting in my easy chair. I would preach every two weeks on a Thursday night, and Bro. Bud and I could not easily decide which one should preach. The day we were working in Corydon and Bro. Steve called us and told us to come to the hospital. We went right to the hospital, and Bro. Steve was standing outside waiting for us. The first news he gave us, he said that the doctor had said Bro. Jackson may not make it. It was like a weight came from the top of my head down to the bottom of my feet. My thinking was, well Bro. Jackson may miss a few services and we will have to preach. We did not care to do that. But there was a long time that I could not even talk about it. What I felt that morning, I could not talk about it, it brought tears to my eyes. But I am glad, that when Bro. Jackson left the scene, God did not die. When he left the scene and Bro. William Branham left the scene, God did not die. A lot of people act as though He died. If they are not careful it could be so for them, because a lot of them are already on the teeter totter of being dead. Abraham picked up his tent and walked as God had instructed him. He walked through the land, not to see whether God’s promises were true or not, but to obey God; and he also wanted to see all of what God had promised him. I love Him this morning. I say that because I praise Him. Brothers and sisters, if you love Him, you should praise Him. I had not meant to go this way today, but I don’t care that I did. We should never apologize for how the Spirit of God leads us. When the Spirit of God moves, young people, I could make an altar call this morning and say, who wants to get closer to God, and about everybody would want to do that. If I turned around and said to you, how many are not living like you should, would you still move? This has been heavy upon my heart and my mind, because I want all of us to be ready. I am not saying that you are not going to make it, but I am saying the quicker we get our lives in order, the quicker the Spirit of God is going to move in this place. You say, well you are judging this morning. I am not judging anyone, I am saying what I feel, because there is somebody that needs to make a move. I am not looking at any certain person. I can go over to Bro. Jerry’s shop and begin to talk about scripture to my brother and he will say, look at these bumps on my arm. God wants us to be in that kind of mode every day. We sing about God being an on time God and He is. God is real, and He wants us to be. He is waiting on somebody to make up their mind. I say these things because I love you today. Abraham was ready to walk at God’s command. It was not that he did not believe God, but he wanted to see what God had given to him. I want to see the other side this morning, what God has for us. I say it again because I mean it, I love you brothers and sisters.
THE GRACE OF GOD
I am still on my same subject. It has led me into different avenues. Today I want to take a road that I hope will help free some people, that they may be able to accept the life that Christ has given them and experience something that is deep and satisfying. I believe with all my heart today, because of what came to me as I was praying, that there are people that have loads they do not know what to do with. I am speaking of people in Faith Assembly as well as people listening on the internet. We are not just probing in the dark, hoping for something of understanding. Paul said that the Spirit would search the deep things of God. Sometimes the deep things run into peoples lives. God means for us to be a people that are free from guilt and condemnation that the devil is always placing upon us. This is part of what I will be speaking about this morning. About two and a half weeks ago, I woke up on Wednesday morning, my ankle was bothering me, and at first I never paid much attention to it, but the problem just did not go away. I did not go to the doctor, I did not go to the emergency room or anything. Then this last week I began to think maybe I had a fracture or something because it was not getting any better and it was swelling throughout the day. So I did go to the emergency room Friday morning, they said it was just a bad sprain and gave me a splint to wear on it. It helped almost immediately, and took the swelling down. Yesterday we had the ice storm and I stepped outside on the step, I did not think it had ice on it, but it did. I fell right down on my elbow. I think I may have injured the ankle again. It was doing better, then it began to hurt again. While they were singing this morning, I thought, I will just stay sitting down to give it some rest. When they began to sing that song, I could not sit any longer, so I got up, but it was still hurting. But it seemed like something warm began to go through it and the pain went away. It is not in pain right now. But I do have a brace on it so I am having to wear a different shoe than what I usually do. I thank the Lord that He has touched that condition this morning and that he has eased the pain. Today, I want to deal with 1st Corinthians chapter 5 to start with, then 2nd Corinthians chapter 2, then Isaiah 53. I will see if I can get through all of this. It may sound strange, but do not come to any conclusions while you hear me read this, because there is an answer to it: which comes in 2nd Corinthians. This is what I want to look at. It does not have anything to do with the subject that he is talking about, except that there is an answer. I went over this once before, but sometimes you need to go over something again in order for people to really understand it. I do want all of you to understand. Verse 1, “It is reported commonly (this means more than one time, commonly) that there is fornication among you, (Now remember what I said, I am not pointing this at anyone in here, but I want you to see that there is an answer to the problems that you face in life, by looking at this.) and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.” Now this is a bad situation, but I want you to understand that Corinth was a city that was given over to fornication because it was a city by the sea, and you had all these maidens that would come out at a certain time when the service men came in, and they gave themselves to them. They gave their bodies to the sailors for pleasure. This has spilled over into the church at Corinth. They had problems. They had problems before, because some of them were saying I am of Paul, I am of Apollos, I am of Cephas, I am of Christ. But they were so confused about who they were, that they were not even looking at the situations that were going on among them. This was a bad situation, there was nothing good about it. As I look at this, it says, “And ye are puffed up.” They were puffed up because they were angry with one another because this one said I am this, or I am this, or I am this. I am a Branhamite, or some other kind of “ite” was what they were saying. Of course some have said, “I will stick with what Bro. Jackson said, no matter what.” Those people will not let you go any further, because they themselves cannot. When we know that the scripture is alive and that God moves within His Word, that should be enough. He does not move outside of His Word: He moves within His Word. “And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.” Now Paul sounds like an angry person, but he was not angry. He was just trying to be as he was raised up to be, a Jew that had a better outlook on morals than what they had. Because they were not looking at the moral situation whatsoever. “For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, (He has already placed his judgment on this situation.) as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, (In other words, as he is talking, he is standing there in the person of Christ. He says that he was, because God turned His ministry over, after Jesus had already gone into heaven, the ministry that Jesus proclaimed was turned unto the apostles’ ministry of that hour. Because, when he said we are ambassadors for Christ, we are the stewards of the mysteries of Christ, we know an ambassador goes to represent the government of which he is a part of. Paul realized his position, Jesus is not here, just like the 13th chapter of Matthew, as it says the angels are sent to separate the tares from the wheat. We know that God is going to use His anointed ministry, but they are angelically inspired. You say, well I don’t believe that. Well I believed it when Bro. William Branham said there was an angel standing beside him, that the angel of the Lord was there, I believe that. Because the angels are not just riding around on clouds racing with one another. They still have their duties. It says that they are ministering spirits sent forth to them that are heirs of salvation. I believe it. Paul then said, In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…) when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, (See? And my spirit.) with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, (Now he has placed himself there instead of Christ for that very purpose, that this man that has done this, would be taken from the earth if need be. That is what he has done.) that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. (Believing that on his deathbed, something would change his mind.) Your glorying is not good. (He is writing to a church, he is not just writing to an individual. He is writing to an assembly of believers.) Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? (We know that. Sometimes I watch a cooking show, I watch them put that baking soda into the flour. They stir it around, then they will put either buttermilk or water in it. Then they let it sit. At the beginning it is flat. But when they put it in a bowl and say, we will leave it here for an hour, then we will work with it. After an hour’s time they come back and that bowl is full, which started out just a little wad, now it has increased. That is what he is talking about, that is what leaven does. He is talking to the church. This thing is going to cause problems in the whole church, unless it is corrected. If you let anything go long enough, then the whole assembly is going to be infected by it.) Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, (Start all over again, get rid of this thing. Whatever you have to do, get rid of it. He is suggesting that they turn the man over to Satan, for the destruction of his flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.) For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” He is talking about getting rid of the leaven, because, like the yeast in the mixture, this is has caused you to be puffed up. When people get it in their mind, this or that, or something else, other than the message of truth, then Satan has got something to punch at them with. “I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolators; for then must ye needs go out of the world.” He is saying here, I am not writing this to tell you not to be around people of that kind at all, because he knew the world is going to be that way. I remember when I was going to the Tabernacle, that there were men that would get good jobs. I knew these men. Somebody that they were working with would let out a curse word, and they would quit because they thought they were so good that they should never have to hear anything like this. Paul is saying, you would have to get out of the world in order to get away from this kind altogether. We can gain respect in those situations. I had a boss, I don’t really know how ornery he was, I did not go home with him. But there were different times, and I never talked religion, I did not tell people what I believed on the line where I was working, but if I walked up and he had said something that he felt like would be something I should not hear, he would say, excuse me, I’m sorry. I did not tell him not to. When you are around people and they don’t hear this kind of stuff coming out of your mouth, and if you live a life before them, a life of Christ, somebody is going to have respect for you. You may have an ornery boss that will never do that, but there is always somebody that will take up for you in some way. John Wesley preached among the roughnecks, coal miners and people of that nature. One day he went among them and began to preach. This one man began to threaten him. He headed toward him. When he did, the roughest man that was in there, a big burly man that could have taken John Wesley and thrown him away, stepped between this man and John Wesley and said, leave him alone. It would have seemed like this would have been the last man that would have taken up for him, but that ought to teach us something. “Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. (Now he tells them what he meant.) But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.” Now he is talking about somebody in the church, not that bunch out in the world. If they are living that kind of life, don’t even show them any respect, and especially, do not even eat with them, if they have this kind of attitude, you must show them that you do not go along with such conduct. “For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? Do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.” Now he goes back to the beginning of what he was talking about, the man that was living with his father’s wife. Right there is where I used to think this man has no chance, because I thought he had already gone too far. This was written in 59 A.D. Now let us go over to 60 A.D. This case that I am talking about, is where many have left off. However if you go to 60 A.D., which is in 2nd Corinthians, the 2nd chapter, there is the answer. I want you to listen. Some of you people that think maybe you have gone too far, I am not going to O.K. any wrong thing you may have done, but this message is on the grace of God and it bypasses all natural understanding. It passes my human understanding because this is what I went with just now, as the way I used to believe it, but I never checked on the end result in 2nd Corinthians. The apostle Paul used four chapter before he ever got to what he had on his mind, which is found in chapter five. He has been telling them, you are still on the bottle, you are still milk fed, instead of people that can accept strong meat, you are still bottle babies. “But I determined this with myself, that I would not come again to you in heaviness. (He was in heaviness, he tells you here that he was, but he said, I determine not to come to you again in heaviness.) For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me? And I wrote this same unto you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow from them of whom I ought to rejoice; having confidence in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all. For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you. But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part: that I may not overcharge you all. Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, (Now he is getting down to the nitty gritty of what he wrote to them about before. He is not talking about some other subject, he is talking about what he had written unto them before, concerning the man that was living with his father’s wife.) which was inflicted of many. (See? Now they listened, they pulled away from the man, he was no longer in their assembly. They finally woke up. They understand that all this other junk they were carrying was not getting them anywhere but deeper and deeper in the cause which they had not even dealt with. He had told them that this thing was going to ruin the whole assembly if you they did not do something about it. Brothers and sisters, there is more to pastoring a church or being a preacher than there is just patting everybody on the back. If something is wrong, it is wrong, and it must be dealt with. If something has to be dealt with, it needs to be dealt with in a scriptural way. Not for destruction, but for correction. Because we are looking to the grace of God that brings salvation, that brings repentance, we must always give room for the grace of God to be manifested.) So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, (Remember, he is not talking about another man. He is talking about the one that he wrote to them about earlier. Why? Because the man had done something about it himself. His life had changed, but they had not known what to do about it after he had changed. Paul had to write another letter to let them know what to do. Forgive him,) and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.” Listen, the man has repented with overmuch sorrow. It was not something that just happened in a day, but he had been grieved about it when they let him know what Paul had said. I am talking about the grace of God that brings repentance. He is no longer telling them to turn him over to Satan. The big problem with some people, is that they will not let go. That is the reason I have this man here, he is carrying a load. He did not die, because he repented with much sorrow, and with a turnaround in his sinful ways. He had turner from his unrighteous ways and straightened up his life. Am I telling you the truth? Truth sometimes has to be examined and studied out. It has to be looked honestly. Then, in order for us to be clear ourselves, it is sometimes necessary for us to forgive. That is what Paul is talking about here. How many times I have preached about the woman that had five husbands, the one she was living with was not her husband. She said, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet. Let me read that 7th verse again. “So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him. For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things.” He meant what he wrote at first. This was not just a thing to take lightly, he meant what he had written the first time, because he was looking at the situation as though the man would never change his life. Too many people, when they do wrong, want to blame everybody else. Well, this one has done this, this one has done that, trying to equal their situation to somebody else. That is not repentance, when you have an attitude like that. That is not change, that is not worthy of respect and forgiveness. I am still talking about the grace of God. I cannot put myself on a pedestal because I have never done certain things that other people have done, and say look at me. Don’t look at me: look at the Word of God, and what Christ Jesus did for all of us. We are going to do that. “To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ.” See? He got another letter. Somebody has told him about the man. He has spent weeks and months, now close to a year, because of over much sorrow. Like I said, don’t bring me this attitude of blaming someone else. If there is something wrong in a person’s life, Bro. Bud and I have dealt with things when the person did not say it was some other person’s fault, but it is my fault. There was one young woman came in here a few years ago after Bro. Jackson had died. She came in here, after she had left her husband, even out of wedlock she had two children. When she came in here, she just walked in and sat down and began to try to fellowship with everybody, without making anything right. We had to deal with that. Her attitude was, I will come if I want to. I had no pity for her. If this man in Corinth had went on in his own way, hell would have been his destination, or at least his body would have been destroyed. He repented and changed his life, but on the other hand, there are people that are so self righteous, they will never forgive someone who has done wrong and then repented. They would rather separate from the body of Christ than they would to forgive. That is not a Christian attitude. Notice “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.” They were no longer puffed up because he said to them, is it so that there is not a wise person among you that can judge between right and wrong. Know ye not that we shall judge angels. You would not want me up here testifying to something, if you could see something else out of me. If I cannot live this life daily, you do not want my testimony. It was time for this guy to get the load off his back. God did not mean for us to go around carrying a load that we could not bear, the ministry is to lighten that load. Like I said, at the beginning, I did not see 2nd Corinthians. I only saw 1st Corinthians. When I did see 2nd Corinthians, I realized he was talking about the same man, not talking about another man. Let us go to Isaiah 53. When I was thinking about this, I began to see Jesus carrying his cross. He did not deserve that: I deserved it. I am no better than you are just because I am a preacher. Being a preacher does not make me any better than you. Look at Him this morning. Let us look at ourselves through the Word of God. You can go back into chapter 52, the 13th verse and read that if you want to, but I want to go on to chapter 53. “Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed? For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, (Not having done wrong or evil. He was able at twelve years of age to stand before the doctors of the Law and talk to them. They could not resist what He was saying.) and as a root out of a dry ground: He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him.” He was not Mr. Gorgeous, and He did not have tattoos all over his body. He did not have his ears pierced or his body pierced. That is not beauty, it is just plain and simple worldliness. There was no form nor comeliness. He did not put on the dog to impress anyone. “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not. Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was wounded four our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.” There was not one single thing in there that we did not need. We like the scripture, with His stripes we are healed, but what about, He carried our sorrows and our grief, our burdens, those things that we could not bear. He carried them. The world turned their back on Him, but I want Him to walk with me. I want whatever He has to offer me. I need Him every day, not just once a week on Sunday morning. That is not the right kind of relationship: I want Him every day of the week. When the doors are opened, I want to see my brothers and sisters in here, because I love you. That is why I am preaching such a message this morning, because I love you and I know that there is forgiveness in Him for all that honestly repent. There was a time when I could not see it all like I do now, but then the Word of God began to open up to me, and when that happens you then begin to see everything more clearly. That poor fellow that was guilty of this sin in 1st Corinthians, that was the way he lived. Then when the Word of God was opened up to him and he saw his dilemma, he then began to weep with much sorrow and cry out to God. Paul said to the others, take him back. That is the way of the Lord Jesus Christ for you. That is not me, that is not what I said, because there was a time when I would have gone the other way. Paul was willing to go the extra mile. He was willing to take the blame in order to set somebody free. If you are living for God this morning, get that load off your back. The cross Jesus bore, I don’t have to bear it, He has already borne that cross. I can ask for forgiveness and He will forgive. This is not the type message that I usually preach, but I have felt for a long time that I should preach it. I know Bro. Bud has been preaching along this line and we are not copying each other, but the messages are brothers one to the other. “All we like sheep have gone astray; (That did not leave one of us out.) we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree, so He became a curse that we might not have to bear that curse. God is shaping the Church for a better world. If you hear this message, maybe you have trod your feet on different paths, maybe it has taken you in different directions, but I would say, think about it this morning. I am not ashamed of what I have preached. I am not ashamed of what Bro. Bud has preached. I guess you could say this is somewhat of a salvation message this morning. Salvation is deliverance. “He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth: He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He openeth not His mouth.” There was all the accusations. He has done this, He has done that, but none of them could agree. The kangaroo court could not agree. They were all patting each other on the back because they had finally caught their enemy. Well He is not my enemy: He is my friend. He said to the disciples, I no longer call you servants because the servant does not know what his lord doeth, but I have called you friends. In other words, He is saying to them, now I can talk to you. I am saying this morning, that He is talking to us through His word. All of us, like sheep, had gone astray. I know I had. But one day it all catches up with you. One day it begins to be a load on your back that you can no longer dismiss. It gets to be such a load that somewhere you have to unload it. You just do not throw it aside, you take it to somebody that can carry it for you. That somebody is the Lord Jesus Christ. Because He had already carried our load. “He was taken from prison, and from judgment: and who shall declare His generation? For He was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was He stricken. And He made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death; because He had done no violence, neither was any deceit in His mouth.” He is not just with us here at church. Going down the road, or at home, there are times that tears fill my eyes because of His presence with me. Don’t dismiss Him. Don’t just live for Him two hours on Sunday morning, two hours on Sunday night, two hours on Thursday night, then go park Him somewhere like you would a horse. If you are one of His chosen, He will not stay parked. He is seeking those that will follow Him, fellowship Him and enjoy His presence. What He says is, come follow me. There are people that would give anything to be in your place this morning. They tell us so. Young people, this walk with the Lord is real, it is not something you put on and take off: it is something you put on and keep on. I said that because the scripture says, put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof. Put Him on and wear Him everywhere you go. You everyone know what I mean by that. We are getting ready to leave this world. This thing is not a joke, not a program or a play that can end. We are talking about something that is eternal. We used to hear an old song: this train don’t carry gamblers, this train. It went into a lot of other things, which I do not remember. One of these days we are going to pull the throttle back and walk with God right on into eternity. We are going to walk with God and walk right on out of here, so to speak. It is just like a cloud that is going to be going up. Are you ready this morning? I love you brothers and sisters, you are my friends. We are not foes. I have not preached this message to be a foe, I have preached it to be a friend, to let you know there is forgiveness where needed. God will put you right in your place that body. That man that I was talking about, he was not left out. When he saw his dilemma and what had happened, saw what wrong he was doing, he began to cry and repent. It was not just that, he began to be in sorrow. He began to look for forgiveness. He began to straighten up his ways, and Paul gave him comfort, lest there be overmuch sorrow. When God forgives, we must forgive also.
THE GRACE OF GOD
When I think about this generation, and all the end time signs all around us, I know this has to be the last generation of this grace age. These preachers in the pulpits anymore, especially those on television, don’t seem to care anything at all about how they dress. In the last thirty to forty years, we have seen them wear their shirt tails out, they wear faded blue jeans, and sometimes they wear a sports coat with their shirt tail hanging below their coat. It just looks like somebody that does not know how to dress. Many of them do not even wear a dress coat. I don’t preach with one on, but I do wear one. They have been heard to say, now we have passed from the generation of fine clothing, They admit that they have passed from that to the denim generation. If blue jeans is all you have, I welcome you. I am not going to condemn you for not being able to afford suits. However, just to go to the house of worship so casual when you could do better is disrespectable. They dress better in golf tournaments than what some preachers do in the pulpit anymore. It is not because they do not have anything to wear, because a lot of them have become rich. Nevertheless the Bible says this about Laodicea, they are poor, blind and naked. Revelation 3:17, “Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” Many of those preachers have tattoos and seem to be proud of them. They have rings in their ears. Some may think I should not say this, but if we are getting ready to go to a place where there is going to be fine, linen robes, we need to have some respect around the house of worship, as people of God. I am not saying any of this to find fault with a person that is not wearing a tie. I am not saying anything like that. I am saying, and I am not really speaking to Faith Assembly, but I am speaking as a society, and a generation that has gotten to where they do not have proper respect for anything. They do not care if their congregation is filled with gays and lesbians, just as long as they come to church. What a disgrace. Laodicea has entirely covered the church world, but we are not a part of that. We do not fit into that mold. I am not going to fit into it. Before I would, I would rather see the doors on this church house padlocked, than to see all this kind of stuff coming into Faith Assembly. Their music now, is not really music. They get up and sing, and they look like trash. They look like they really had nothing better to wear, like people that have been out in the field working. People that do not have anything better cannot help it, because the Bible says, you have the poor with you always. Jesus also said, you have not me with you always. That is speaking to this generation. He has been shut out, He has been closed out. I made mention to this the other day, that something is getting ready to happen in Faith Assembly like you have not seen yet. Sitting here this morning, it just filled me. It seemed like it filled me completely full this morning. I long for that hour when we come into this place one of these days, and the Spirit takes over. I don’t know if it is going to shake like it did in the New Testament, but it can. It said that every one was filled with the Holy Ghost. When we begin to long for that and pray for it, it is going to come. I feel inside my soul, that it is coming. The thing about it is, I don’t want to miss it. I don’t want to do anything to prevent it, but I want to live a life where I can say, welcome Lord Jesus, you are welcome in this place. Every spirit that is unlike Him, let it be gone, that He may be all in all. I don’t know if you have that feeling in you that I have, but I hope you do. I hope when you come here there is an expectation, that there is something for real that is going to happen. If somebody was crippled and they get up and begin to walk and begin to run and shout and praise the Lord, we would all be on our feet. But there is something more important than that. Maybe not for the individual that is in that way, but the important thing I am talking about, is for God to completely fill this place with His presence. It is going to happen: I know it is. The dream that Bro. Jackson had about everybody having their little bottle of oil, it is going to happen. That was not an insignificant dream. That is not a fabrication. It is going to happen. For my scripture today I am going back to Isaiah 53. I know I read that last Sunday, what our Lord went through, but it will not hurt to read it again. “Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?” Let me say something here, I want to give people hope. I do not want to look down with disdain or with misgivings on anyone, but if there is something in our lives that should not be there, we need to settle that immediately. You settle that between you and the Lord, and if you need to settle it between you and someone else, that is up to you. I will say this, I do not want us to miss what God is going to do with His Bride Church because of stubbornness on our part. I do not want to be setting here when something happens, and I cannot be a part of it. “For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not. Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth: He is brought as a lamb before the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He openeth not His mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare His generation? Now I want to go from that in verse 8, to Matthew, chapter 26. Jesus is standing before Caiaphus. It says that He was brought before judgment as a lamb is to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb. So He opened not His mouth. Here we have a scripture starting in Matthew 26:62. “And the high priest arose, and said unto Him, Answereth thou nothing? What is it which these witness against thee? But Jesus held His peace. And the high priest answered and said unto Him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.” When he said that, Jesus had to answer, because it was a commandment. If you are adjured before God, then you have to answer. This is the only time that He answered the high priest. “Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.” He was commanded to answer, and this is the only words He said in His answer. He tells him this, and when He did, then the high priest rent his clothes saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy. In the 28th chapter of the book of Exodus, 31 and 32, the high priest’s garment is double sewn here, where he tore it. He grabs this part of the garment and tears it, disqualifying him from being high priest. But what did Jesus answer and say? Thou hast said. Jesus is referring back to what he had said during that year beforehand. I should have had that scripture ready, but I do not. As for the high priest, they came before him, the different scribes and pharisees and began to tell him what was going on with Jesus, how that so many are being healed and all that. They began to say to the high priest, if this keeps up, then the Romans are going to come and take away the kingdom. The high priest answered and said, him being high priest that year, it is expedient that one die for the whole nation this year, lest the whole nation be destroyed. That is why Jesus answered in this way, “Jesus saith unto hin, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? Behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy. What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death.” Back in Isaiah it said He was taken from prison. We have a picture portraying Him standing before the high priest with all his paraphernalia on, having the Urim and Thummim, and high priestly robes, which have the bells and pomegranates on the bottom. Everything that he is dressed with, is what a high priest is to be dressed with. Here the very Savior and Lord stands before him, and he has already prophesied that year, so now he is fulfilling his prophecy. How quick men forget what they have said. Back in Isaiah it said, “He was taken from prison, and from judgment: and who shall declare His generation? For He was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was He stricken. And He made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death; because He had done no violence, neither was any deceit in His mouth.” I have the next picture here, Jesus not only was beaten, a crown of thorns put upon His head, but the distance where the pavement was, where the Romans played their games all night, they were gambling games, we have seen those stones where it was written on them, the ones who have been to Israel. The cross, the way He carried the cross, is a long way through Jerusalem, until you get to the Damascus Gate. You go out the Damascus Gate into Golgotha, which is some distance from there. It said He was bruised for our iniquities. All this, not for Him, but it was for all for us. He was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement of our peace was upon Him, that you might have peace in your soul. This was a bloody scene. There was no beauty in it. I know the Catholics have their crosses that they put up everywhere, but His was not a beautiful cross. It was old rough hewn lumber that they hanged Him on. This was all for you and me, that is all for amazing grace, how sweet the sound, especially to say that it was for a wretch like me, a wretched person. I was in this world with no hope. He was not a man of beauty that man might make Him the one on front of Time magazine. But there is a book about Him, that used to be in every house in America. The Gideon’s used to put it in every room in every hotel, every doctor’s office. Every school room used to have a Bible in it. Now that worthy one, which we call our Lord, is no longer honored in school or in speeches. It used to be, when students graduated from high school, they had a preacher come in and hold a service. I remember the principal, the last place I pastored in the Methodist Church, had mentioned about me coming to do their service. It would probably have been the last one I had ever done, but I moved, I was no longer in the Methodist Church. I remember when I first became a pastor, which was about six months after I was converted, because I had some pull by a brother that had climbed quite a bit in the Methodist Church. I pastored there, at one place, for a year, and they no longer wanted me because I went to visit people. I remember one woman I went to visit, she lived in the woods, there was no road there. She had a son that had been operated on, that could no longer hold food on his stomach. He would eat and vomit it up. Somebody told me about him. I went there and visited with him. I did not have much money, but I would always leave them a dollar or something, which was better than nothing in those days. I remember telling someone in that church, this poor woman is out there trying to cut wood for her family. There was a couple of old Methodist women that rose up and said, we never forsake our own. The woman fell and hurt herself. When it came down time to choose another pastor, the district superintendent took me in, I was going to school, so he took me into the cafeteria and fed me a meal, just to say we don’t need that kind of preaching anymore. We know you visit, we know all this. He told me this, but he said, this is not what the Methodist Church needs anymore. I went to see people that had never been seen before. I went to pray with them, because the Spirit of God was upon me. I remember driving down the road, and God would speak to my heart. I have stopped and picked up people just to talk to them about the Lord. Most of them would not ride very far. I did it because I felt led to, because of the feeling in my heart. That was a different day than what we have now, but it is not a different God today than it was then. I am longing for the day to see our brothers and sisters made well. I believe it, I don’t know how you feel about it, but I long to see Bro. David not need the crutches any longer. I long to see the day when the Pixley’s or whoever would have problems in your body, would have these things all taken care of. We are living very close to that time. I have another picture I want to use. It said that He was wounded for our transgressions. That was for mine and yours. He was wounded. The Jews one day will say, where did you get the wounds in your hands? What happened to cause that wound in your side? He is not going to jump on them. He is going to say, in the house of my friends. Brothers and Sisters, we must let the Bible be real in our lives. Let it be a real book to guide us: not a story, or something we read on Sunday. Let it be alive to us during the week. I am still talking about grace, the grace that was given to us, that was nothing here for Him. I remember the time Bro. William Branham was down at the Youngstown shopping center, his wife was in the Bacon’s store. He was sitting in the parking lot and he had a vision. He saw a beautiful scene, these women all dressed in white, walking. He watched that scene. Then after that, the scene changed and here came these people walking around like hippies, dressed like them and doing that twist of a dance. He began to cry and said, Lord, is this what I have presented to you. The scene changed, and he saw the same thing again that he did at the beginning. Then he saw the last scene and it was the beautiful women walking around with robes of white. It has to be this time that we are living in. It has got to be this people that we are talking to. It is time that we straighten up our lives. He was bruised for our iniquities; mine and yours. It is not black or white, one race is not any better than the other, or no worse in the eyes of God. This modern gospel that they are presenting now, is all for the flesh, get what you can get, then give it to us and you will be blessed. Give, give, give, is their theme. I have another scripture from John, the 15th chapter. Verse 1, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit He taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.” What is He talking about there? He is talking about the fruit of the Spirit. My life and your life is what He is talking about. Every once in awhile He has to trim, and He has to purge. We have got to see ourselves in this picture. Do not put yourself outside the picture and say, He is looking at somebody else: He is looking at you and me this morning. Are we willing to be purged? Are we willing to be trimmed? Are we afraid of a gospel that is going to get on our toes? A gospel that is going to work on our minds, upon our spirits, on our entire lives, to trim us up and get us ready, are we afraid of that gospel? We know the Church of the living God must have the nine spiritual fruits, love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance, all these things that are connected to a Christian life must be present. When Paul looked at that, he said there is no law against that. These things are in our lives and there is no law against any of them. Jesus had time for the woman at the well. He had time to talk to her, to tell her what she was lacking. He has time to talk to you and me this morning. Look what I have done. No, look what He has done. When He forgives, He makes it as though it never happened. Such a great God of love, for the Bible says that God is love, the great God of love that we have to look to, He had to show it in Jesus Christ, because everybody dreaded God. They thought He was mean, that He was out to get them, so He showed His love through Jesus the Christ which was His Son, because He could not come to us in human form Himself. Many times He corrected, but when He corrected it was for a purpose. He corrected the Jewish people and finally had to give them a Law. But he had worked in Abraham by grace. He worked in Noah by grace. Here Jesus comes down the road one day when He was hungry, when He was tired, and He sat down on a well. Then here comes this woman to draw water. He could have said, I’m not going to have anything to do with her, she is not a Jew, she is a half breed. What if He had looked at us in that way. Even the sign of the woman, which was not a Jew, wanted something. She had a daughter that was tormented and she needed help. She called to Him, help my daughter. Jesus kept quiet. He may not answer you the first time. He did not answer blind Bartimaeus the first time. Here he sat with a pot in his hand, trying to collect a few pennies in order to survive. They did not have give away programs back then. People now, would rather trust the government for what they need than to trust God. Blind Bartimaeus cried, he got louder, Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me. Some may have said, Shut up boy, you are bothering the Master. We are all going toward Jerusalem, we are out of Jericho, we are all having a good time, we are following the Master. There was one man that was not following, because he needed help. No matter how far along we get in this walk with God, when someone needs help, God is going to stop long enough to help that person. We cry one time, it should be enough, He heard us the first time. The more they told Bartimaeus be quiet, the louder he got, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me. Jesus stopped. Money is not what stopped Him, and blindness did not stop Him. He heard a voice who knew who He was, Jesus. He was blind, he could not read. I don’t know if they had Braille back then, but I doubt it. He got loud and then louder, Jesus stopped. He knew what He needed, but He asked him, what do you need? He knows what you need this morning, but go ahead and tell Him. Tell Him what you need, if you want healing, tell Him what you need, if you want salvation, tell Him what you want. Don’t be ashamed. If you want the Holy Ghost, tell Him. He has enough for all, waiting to fill somebody’s life, that is willing to say Yes, Lord. Blind Bartimaeus, after Jesus called him, then somebody listened and said, he called you. Bartimaeus, what do you want? That I might receive my sight. That is all it took. You contact Him, that is all it takes. If you want an answer, just contact Him. I am trying to say these things in a way to let somebody know that they can be loosed from whatever has them bound, so that you may be made free. You don’t have to walk around with that burden, if you are sincere with the Lord. Oh I am afraid of what would happen. So was that preacher, Charles Price. Price was afraid, he had heard they were having a meeting down there and he was a proud Presbyterian. So he began to inquire. He sees a young black man who had been to the meeting. He said, what is going on down there, what is happening down there? He began to shout and tell him what was going on down there. He then decided, I will go down and see for myself. He hid behind the piano. He got under conviction so much that he began to pray. He got on his knees and began to pray, but he did not want anybody to see him. Well while he was praying, some of those big burly men got hold of the piano and moved it, so it left him in the open. God will leave you in the open. Your pride will never make it in. My name is James Allen, so what? What do you need? I am pleading with you today, because we are in the last days. We are in the last roundup. Young people, they may talk about you at school, but they will not have what you have. They can talk about you, but they cannot do anything about it. This picture we have up here on the screen, illustrates what was done for you and me. He did not die just for me. He did not die to make me a preacher: He died to make me a saint, and to make you a saint. I remember the sister that used to sing the song, Don’t Look Down On Anybody Else, Only God Sits Up That High. When that poor woman would get out of the bed, somebody would have to help her out of the bed to come to church, and she would park in front of the door. Somebody had to get her out of the car to get her in here. I saw it happen. Why? Because she loved God more than she loved the flesh she was residing in. When you get in tune with Him, you will feel a lot better: you will not notice a hurt ankle so much. We are going to see this thing finished up. I cannot do it, but by the grace of God we can all do it together. We are in this together. I do not know how many times Barnabas called out to Jesus, but they were not going to shut him up. Blind Barnabas was ready to receive what he needed. This was the last time Jesus was going to be in Jericho. He was headed for Jerusalem, so this was his last opportunity. Jesus had already had a good meal because He had called Zachaeus out of a tree and went home with him. Nobody else saw him, everybody else was interested in the crowd. Jesus walked down the street, He came to a particular tree, a sycamore tree. He looked up and saw Zachaeus and said to him, I am going to eat at your house today. Zachaeus began to pour out, if I have done anything wrong, if I have taken anything that I should not have taken, he began to confess to Jesus. Jesus said to him, you are a son of Abraham. That meant something. I remember back in the middle 1990’s, there were a lot of prophecies going on. Somebody prophesied about me and said something, calling me a son of God. I said I would rather hear that than anything else I could hear. I am looking at sons and daughters of God, that have washed their robes and are washing their robes and making them white, because they have forsaken many things of this world. The husband is no longer here, the child is no longer here. This one and that one or the other is no longer here, but these feel that there is a truth here that they must have. I know there is a truth here. If I were sitting on the fence this morning, and did not know which way to go, I would be jumping off right now. I cannot live with an unsettled mind. I know these old rail fences, I used to sit on them and watch the hogs. After awhile you get mighty tired sitting on the fence. Today, if you are in that state of mind, today is the day to walk off from false ideas and opinions, and totally turn your life over to Him, He will settle everything for you. He will walk with you to the very end of your journey on this road of faith, as you wash your garment and make it spotless.
LAW FOR THE JEWS,
GRACE FOR GENTILES
I now want to go to the slide of Jesus on the cross again, then I want to go into God dealing with Abraham. I want to go to 1st Peter for this. This is one of the scriptures that I had written down, chapter 3, verses 18 through 22. “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.” Quickened means to be brought to life. If you do watch any Christian television, as they call it, they are putting a lot of emphasis upon the prayer shawl now. You can turn from channel to channel and they all have the prayer shawl. This was something of the Old Testament. People see the Jews wearing that today, which is a Jewish custom, but they keep elevating these things to the Gentile people, and they are falling for it. But really, this is a part of the Law, that prayer shawl was something the Jews put over their head and upon their shoulders. When the apostle Paul brought the gospel message to his gatherings, he put aside most of the Jewish things that were under the Law, because he realized we were to live by grace. Grace is not something you can add anything to. It must be through faith, we are saved by grace and that not of ourselves, it is a gift, a gift of God. We try to teach here at Faith Assembly, the things that we feel are necessary for salvation, and necessary for living a holy life before God. They will tell you that Jesus wore the prayer shawl always, and that when He ascended to heaven, He had it, and when He comes back to earth, He will still have it. I realize that when He comes back to earth, He will be on a white horse to judge the world. But His garment is going to be dipped in blood. To me, salvation is a free gift and it is something that has no additives. Paul taught that a man with his head covered dishonors God; and that a woman with her head uncovered dishonors her husband, which is her head. I know we have all heard this different, but Paul goes ahead and he talks there and says this is because of the angels, that they are to wear their head covered, but that covering is their hair. It is not a shawl, it is not some kind of covering as the Catholics used to use. The nuns shaved their heads, then they covered them. I do not know if they do that anymore, because they do not wear that much covering on their head. I remember when Catholics had their head covered all the way down, that was because they had no hair, they shaved it off. I don’t know where they ever got that idea from, because they sure cannot prove it by scripture. They don’t have to use scripture. You just fool people and they fall for it. I do see that there are many things being done by Gentile preachers now, as they are trying to influence Jewish people, and this world of religion trying to do to influence the Jews, is working to some extent in some places, but the ardent Jew in Israel is not going to fall for anything like that. They realize what is going on, that they are trying to bring Christianity to them in that way. They have many Christian, so-called, rabbis. I am going to say it like that, because I know that is not according to the Bible. They can promote them as Christian rabbis that are Jews, but that type will never make it into the 144,000 servants of God. It can never happen, because the 144,000 are virgins. They have never been involved with the harlots of Revelation 17. The woman of Revelation 12, is a keeper of the Law, which is only for the Jews. If you realize as you go into Revelation, there is only one of the ordinances. As you look at Zechariah 14, only one of the ordinances will be handled by the Gentile people during the Millennium, and that is the feast of ingathering, I can’t think of it right now, I need to clarify that. Zechariah 14, the 16th verse says, “And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.” The Jewish people will be under the Law during that time, because they never were able to keep the Law, because there was too much pride and too much of trying to make it a political thing, with the priests and High Priest and all, therefore they changed things just like the politicians do today. They put so many things there, Jesus said of the Pharisees and scribes, He said that they put burdens upon men. They themselves will not lift one finger to remove them. As I mention this and talk about it, this was not necessarily a part of my message, but I want us to be able at Faith Assembly, to be people that do not fall for everything we hear. It makes no difference where it comes from, there are things that are wrong, and there are things that we can strain at a gnat and swallow a camel. Bro. Bud and I have tried our best and are still trying our best to keep Faith Assembly a place of reality, not a place where things that are wrong goes on. As I preach this morning, if there is something wrong in your life, you may get by with it before men, but then there is a God waiting on the other side, which if we are headed in the wrong direction, we need to straighten out our path and do the right thing. This is the best hour we have ever had because this is the time of the coming of the Lord. I just want to be ready and I want you to be ready, that is why I say the things I do. As I read the verse from 1st Peter, I will read it again. “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also He went and preached unto the spirits in prison; Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a-preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.” Peter goes way back in this, as he is expressing a revelation. This had to be a revelation of his, it was not something that was taught to him: it was a revelation to him. As I began to think about that the other day, I thought about Jesus. When Jesus was crucified, He went beyond the paradise part. He went and preached to those imprisoned spirits, all the way down into hell itself, to let those see, that had missed it in the days of Noah, what they had really missed. But when He was raised from the dead, He came to paradise and loosed those people. He brought them out after His resurrection, because the Bible says He is the resurrection and He is the life. Nobody else can ever claim that because no other man ever had that life in them to do so. His very life was the life of God. That may sound strange, but it is no stranger than what I said this morning, when you receive the Holy Ghost, you receive a part of God because God is life. The thing about it is, God had a plan from the foundation of the world. It was not to the mighty or to the strong: it was for those of faith, that would willingly follow truth.