You are not connected. Please login or register

Tape Twenty Three

Go down  Message [Page 1 of 1]

1 Tape Twenty Three on Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:20 am


1I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues—last, because with them God's wrath is completed

So far we have seen the seven seals and the seven trumpets, which we’ve just completed and now we’re looking at the seven plagues or the seven viles or bowls that are being poured out. There’s not time for us to go back and view the significance of all these sevens, I think by now we understand to some degree that for the most part, this is a picture-gram declaring when these things are at their full mature state of completion. This is why we see this specific number so greatly used in the book of Revelation because this number alone represents completion and finality. The consummation of all things.

Last Days
I believe it’s not by chance that God has led us to this study at this time, I believe we’re in the dawn of the finality of his plan for this creation. The last days, but these last days are not the end of an Old Covenant law or Jewish system, I’ll even go so far as to say the days we’re living in, are not the same last days that Joel or Peter spoke about, we’ll be getting into that later. But these last days are the ending to our natural realm of life, to the returning of Christ. Now, I want you to see what he sees in these plagues, but before we do, he notices something in verse two that we touched on in the previous chapter.

2And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God.

May Have to read This More Than Once to Get It
Remember we have been saying almost to the point of utter redundancy, that what we are considering, in fact, what we are looking at from Revelation chapters 1 to 22, all of these things, historically have already happened. What we’re looking at here in these verses of Scripture is not something that we’re looking “forward” to, but instead something that has already happened. It influences our prophetic experiences now, but we must understand what it meant “then” before we can understand what it means “now.”

Sea of Glass
This letter of Revelation was written to seven churches, remember? And when they received this letter, all of it had relevance to them. From chapter 1 to 22 whereas most of us have been taught that the events from chapters 4 through 22 have not even happened yet. And we already covered that ground. So again, what is this sea of glass that John is seeing? He was not referring to the Mediterranean sea that was lapping upon the shores of Patmos where he was exiled.

But like we just covered, if you take the time and look at the original blueprint God drew up in the Old Testament, you’d find this sea of glass in the temple which originated with Moses, but was dramatically increased with Solomon. It’s not hard to find the references. If you look in Exodus 24 you’ll find that as Moses went up mount Sinai, he sees the pavement that is before the throne of God as a sapphire pavement. He’s also seeing something that was familiar to Ezekiel.

In Ezekiel’s vision he sees something very similar to this sea of glass before the throne of God. But more importantly the greatest, and most poignant and profound picture that he sees here is the same thing that is described in the book of Kings and Chronicles in the dedication of the temple of Solomon. There is something that is said of this great brazen laver. We need to understand this clearly in order to be able to comprehend what’s coming later. Whenever Solomon dedicates the temple, Scripture says he makes several brazen lavers. These are huge wash basins that the priests used as they went about the sacrificial duties of the Old Testament system.

2Ch 4:6
He made also ten lavers, and put five on the right hand, and five on the left, to wash in them: such things as they offered for the burnt offering they washed in them; but the sea [was] for the priests to wash in.

Ministry of Sea versus Laver
And the Scriptures say in Kings and Chronicles, that he creates a laver that is called the sea of glass. Now, I don’t have to come up with some bazaar idea or theory of what I think this sea of glass in Revelation represents when it’s glaring up at me from the origin of God’s redemptive plan here in the archives of the Old Testament. Let the Bible interpret itself.

Notice what it said there in verse 6 of 2 Chronicles, the lavers, ten of them, were to be used for the washing of the actual sacrifices before they were to be burned, they first had to be washed. Interesting order there, it’s not because the flesh and inner parts of the animals had been dropped in the dirt and needed to be rinsed off, it was because the water symbolizes the spirit and we all are to be washed in the spirit as we lay down our sacrifices unto God.

It’s all symbolic. But understand again, the 10 lavers are for the washing of the sacrifices, but the sea is separate from them and it’s used for the cleansing of the priests. This is the same sea that John is referring to.

The Scripture goes on to say that Solomon stepped to the brazen altar (1 Kings 8:22) and he begins to pray a prayer of dedication. Now understand also that this altar isn’t just a little table like your grill at home where you cook your meat. This thing had a ramp, not steps, but a ramp leading up to it that the Priests would walk in order to be able to access the altar. It was here that Solomon had walked and then turned toward the congregation and led the prayer of dedication and when he finishes, what happened? Fire falls from heaven.

Now here in Revelation again, John is seeing a sea of glass mingled with what? Fire. The same image that is described in the dedication of Solomon’s temple. We also tie that back to the closing verses of chapter 14 that make it clear to us concerning these people that are standing there on the sea of glass in verse two who had gotten victory over the beast and his image and mark with harps, they are worshiping. That’s also an image that reaches back to the book of Exodus as well when it describes the passage of the children of Israel as they come out of the Egyptian bondage and they pass through the red sea.

The sea that has turned red in chapter 14 now becomes a sea that is mingled with fire. The picture again, , is the same as the picture of Moses bringing the children through the red sea and victory over this beast that had manifest in a man named Pharaoh. Now again, there’s not time for us to go back and, in fact you can go back to your notes when we covered chapter 13 dealing with the mark of the beast and what his name is.

Adulterated Doctrines?
And it isn’t what we’ve been traditionally taught either, now this isn’t to say that I have had some new revelation, it just means what we’ve been taught for the last 200 years is in error. In fact most of what we’ve been teaching to you is not a new doctrine. Most of what we’ve been teaching was held and taught by the early church fathers 2000 years ago. They don’t believe all these things we’ve been taught with this escapist mentality of today. They didn’t, I’ve read the history. Something between here and there really got askew.

Answers to Questions Concerning Daniel in Near Future
It was a doctrine of devils to teach us the kingdom of God was going instead of coming. Our prayer is not “Thy kingdom go” our prayer is “Thy kingdom come.”¬ It’s made very clear to us, and I’m gong to deal in just a few weeks as the Lord gives me the liberty to do so, I’m going to deal with Daniel chapter 9 which is the passage of Scripture that is fundamental and foundational to you understanding the error of dispensational teaching.

The 490 weeks that the mainline church has broken down an a virtual prophetic time-table, some of you may know about that, others of you that don’t, don’t’ worry about it when it comes to it I’ll clear it up for you . . .I’ve got all the math worked out . There’s been some gross errors inserted in there in this parenthetical teaching . . .

So John is picturing also the saints rejoicing at the water’s edge like Moses and the Israelites after they’ve come out of the original red sea and when they come out what happens? The sea closes behind them and destroys all of Pharaoh and all of his armies, the horse and the rider. And the red sea comes up to the horse’s bridle. Paul describes the same thing concerning the deliverance of God’s people in the baptism of the red sea in ! Corinthians 10, we’ve talked about that.

Historical Observations
And so what the Israelites are brought through to their salvation, their persecutors undergo to their destruction. Pharaoh and his hosts are punished in those returning waters. The irony of that is just as that was true in the Old Testament in the deliverance of Israel, now Israel, because they have rejected the Messiah what they had been delivered from, now they’re being destroyed in. Those who are standing upon the sea of glass, hear me now, those who’re standing on the sea of glass are the first-century Christians who’re being persecuted from two sources remember? By the Romans and by the Jews.

The Two Beasts
Because they didn’t stop with crucifying Jesus, they aligned themselves with the Roman government, historically this is all verifiable and you’ve heard this before, but I want to make sure we nail this down. The beasts that come up, there are two of them remember? One out of the sea the other out of the land. The one out of the land, what does “the land” always symbolize? Israel’s inheritance, it was the “promise land” so when you see the beast come out of the “land”. It’s representing Israel as a nation The one out of the sea, what does the sea symbolize? Not just “humanity” in general, but those that are lost. This is why, historically speaking, the Roman government, is seen as the beast from the sea. They were the ones that brought Israel to it’s national knees as well as the ones that destroyed the temple and all the traditions that protected it.

Jam 1:6
But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

Eph 4:14
That we [henceforth] be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, [and] cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

The beast that comes up out of the land, remember the land is always representative of Israel. It was the very foundation of the original promise between God and Abraham, that if Abraham believed, then not only would he have this land prepared for him, but his offspring would fill it to the rim. But the land is what later became known as Israel. If they remained true to God, they were protected in his land of promise. But when they rebelled, they were driven out of the land until they were released to return by his decree.

Historical and Prophetical Beast
Two beasts that come up and try to destroy the people of God. Rome and Israel, the religious Israel, not the redeemed Israel. It was the Israel that lost their land but wouldn’t let go of the traditions that blinded them from the Truth in the first place. We went into describing how that historically, Nero was even called “The beast”. Prophetically speaking we see the beast has his origin in the garden of Eden. “The serpent was more subtle than all the . . .”beasts” . . . of the field.

And that beastly nature manifests all the way through the Old Testament. Ecclesiastes chapter 3 states that man, at his best is nothing more than a beast.

Ecclesiastes 3
18I said in my heart regarding the subject of the sons of men, God is trying (separating and sifting) them, that they may see that by themselves [under the sun, without God] they are but like beasts. 19For that which befalls the sons of men befalls beasts; even [in the end] one thing befalls them both. As the one dies, so dies the other. Yes, they all have one breath and spirit, so that a [a]man has no preeminence over a beast; for all is vanity (emptiness, falsity, and futility)!20All go to one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.21Who knows the spirit of man, whether it goes upward, and the spirit of the beast, whether it goes downward to the earth?22So I saw that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his own works, for that is his portion. For who shall bring him back to see what will happen after he is gone?

Psalm 73:22
So foolish [was] I, and ignorant: I was [as] a beast before thee.

Paul was wrestling with a beast at Ephesus(1 Corinthians 15:32), he wasn’t wrestling with animals, he was wrestling with people, the spirits of carnal men. There are many Scriptures that point out that this beast nature has to do with the fallen nature of Adam. So, he sees them

3And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints

The Song of Moses
Where was the song of Moses sung? It was sung at the Red Sea just after they crossed it on dry land. Miriam led that great chorus with the words “The horse and rider have been thrown into the sea, the Lord hath triumphed gloriously.” All that is a type of what happened to us. Remember this is not a revelation of smart bombs and scud missiles and atomic warfare, this book is a revelation of Jesus Christ, it’s the revelation of what he HAS DONE for us.

1 Corinthians 10 tells us that these things that happened to the children of Israel happened to them as an example to us upon to whom the ends of the world have come. They walked through a literal Red Sea just as the majority of us did the same thing when we walked down into our baptisms of the waters of the Wapsi. We went into our Red Sea and our Pharaoh, everything that had held us there in bondage followed us in, but were no where to be seen when we came out. So then the church is now singing the song of Moses AND the song of the lamb.

Jesus Needed Baptized
Why did John the Baptist have to baptize Jesus if he was without any sin in his life? Because it was an important factor to include into the redemption of the Spiritual deliverance of Israel. It was to show that our Spiritual Moses, our guiding shepherd LEADS us from out of our Egyptian bondage into our promise land of abundant life. It’s the same picture he did as an infant, he was carried by his parents, down into Egypt, as they ran from Herod not because God couldn’t protect him in Israel, but as a type and shadow of what was to come.

The song of Moses and the song of the Lamb. This is the combining of the Old Testament saints with the New Testament saints. It’s a song that can not be taught. It’s a song that no man can teach without the Holy Spirit revealing it through us. It’s the same pattern that Peter experienced and it changed his entire identity from Simeon to Peter. From pebble to Rock. It was a revelation from God that Peter saw Jesus as the Messiah, it was the song of Salvation that only the Spirit can impress upon us the truth of Life apart from the carnal religions of men.

4Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest. 5And after that I looked, and, behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened: 6And the seven angels came out of the temple, having the seven plagues, clothed in pure and white linen, and having their breasts girded with golden girdles. 7And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever and ever. 8And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and from his power; and no man was able to enter into the temple, till the seven plagues of the seven angels were fulfilled.

Glory of Smoke
I want to take a quick look here in verse 8 at something that is repeated over and over again in Scripture. The first time that the tabernacle or the temple was filled with the glory of God as smoke was when it was first dedicated by Moses Remember? When it was completed in the wilderness and the Bible speaks about when fire fell from heaven and ignited the altar in the outer court and they took that and lit the lampstand and altar of incense and the glory of God filled the entire tabernacle.

The next time it happened was when Solomon finished building the elaborate, gold-laden temple. The third time it happened, was in Acts chapter 2. You just don’t read it in those terms. 1And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting Just like the glory filled all the house of the tabernacle of Moses and the temple of Solomon, it also filled all the house here in Acts except this time it was a temple not made with hands!

It wasn’t a temple made by Moses or Solomon, but it was a temple made by the master builder, Jesus Christ! And the smoke filled the temple so much . . . “This” temple, that the people couldn’t stand to minister. You see that? That is just a fulfillment of what we read there in verse 8. But I want to focus on something else that he talks about here in verse 7.

What are these viles?
It won’t take too much to notice that most reference Bibles will show you these viles are again mentioned in chapter 5:8. Let me tell you something that I’ve been saying over and over again to the point I’m going to wear you out with it, I might even make you angry before it’s all over with. “Let the Bible interpret itself.” If I want to understand what these images are then I should first of all, employ the basic, fundamental principle of interpretation which means I look for the first mention of it in the Bible. The law of first mention. I just gave you something right then that most Bible schools will never give you. They will teach you to interpret things in all kinds of distorted perspectives.

First of all, whenever I want to understand the meaning of anything, I go to the first place it was originally mentioned in the Bible, rather than trying to run to some commentator. So these 7 golden viles we see first of all in the 5th chapter in verse 8, these viles that hold the prayers of the saints, the prayers of the saints go up and they’re held in these golden viles. You don’t understand sometimes that your prayers are not always just a matter of getting your needs met, but sometimes your prayer and praise that goes up before God is actually captured and collected and eventually sent back to the earth to bring judgment on those situations and upon those people that are plaguing you.

Editor’s Note
I want to try to stop the argument here before it begins. This is not saying that I am to unleash judgment on others in my prayers. That is not uplifting, nor is it building and strengthening others. Whenever you use the power of God for your own manipulation, such as praying “against” other believers because there’s a rift between you, this is crossing the line of spiritual warfare and into the territory of witchcraft.

What I “am” saying is, when you pray “for” your enemies, let God choose as to how he wants that prayer to be answered. When Jesus was sent to us, he was an answer to our prayers for redemption. The result is, my redemption is someone else’s curse. The same goes for what’s being said here, my answer to prayer could very well be judgment on someone else, but not because I prayed judgment to fall on them, but because that was the answer as a result of my praying for redemption. It’s not uncommon for God to use judgment to bring redemption.
End of Note
Viles and Bowls
But the word “vile” here, different translations will give you different perspectives. The NIV states it as “bowls” which is more appropriate in this sense. Amplified also uses it as bowl. In fact if you take this word “vile” and trace it back to it’s Biblical origin, you’ll find that it’s from the bowls that were used in the tabernacle of Moses concerning the table of showbread. (Numbers 4:7) These are bowls that were used to pour out drink offerings. Remember in the tabernacle of Moses at the table of showbread, there were two stacks of bread, 6 loaves in each stack. Those pieces of bread represent each tribe of Israel, 12 tribes make up one nation. 12, again, symbolizes government. This was God’s government over Israel in the tabernacle. It was from the tabernacle that God governed his people.

Breaking Bread Together
In that we have the revelation of the diversity of unity in the body of Christ. 1 Corinthians tells us that we being many are made of one bread. When we take of the bread of communion, it’s not just about the symbolism of the broken body of Jesus even though that is fundamentally what it means. When we take communion I’m saying I’m also taking covenant with you. “Take, eat this is my . . .body. Which is what Jesus said in Luke 22. Know you not that you are the “body” of Jesus Christ. It’s a revelation of the body of Jesus Christ. There are many sick and weak among you because you do not rightly discern the Lord’s body. That’s not about having disrespect for the sacrament, it’s disrespect and lack of discernment of who other people are in the body of Christ.

Some of you long for visitations, you long for Jesus to show up. It would be just marvelous for you if Jesus would just manifest himself in your bedroom and you don’t even understand he’s the person sitting next to you right now. Know ye not that you are the body of Christ! The reason why were sick and weak often times is because we don’t see that the person sitting next to us is made in the image of God! He can walk right up beside you and you’d be like the disciples on the road to Emaus because you don’t have the ability to see him when he manifests himself in a different form from what you’re used to seeing!

Back to the Bowls
If he doesn’t come in some Pentecostal form or in some Charismatic form or some Baptist . .the list goes on . .you wouldn’t know him. And he’s always stirring you up and stretching your limited boundaries by manifesting himself in ways you’re not accustomed to recognizing him. That table of showbread, what’s it have to do with these bowls in Revelation? Again, there were bowls used in the tabernacle of Moses at the table of showbread which is a symbol of the body of Christ. What do we get at the table of showbread? We get bread and what else? Wine.

That is a foreshadowing of what we do in communion. The ministry of the priest at the activity at the table of showbread is a type and shadow of what Jesus “showed” the disciples in the upper room. You can’t see this truth without the golden lampstand, which again is symbolizing Christ as well, illuminating it’s light of revelation behind you. The reason why most people haven’t been able to see the body of Christ is because they haven’t had the overshadowing of the lampstand, the holy Spirit, overshadowing in the gifts and the fruit of the Spirit, which is the oil used to keep the fire in the lamp stand going, illuminating over their shoulder so they can see.

Because, remember, in the tabernacle of Moses you have the lampstand on one side and on the other you have the table of showbread. So when I turn my back to the lamp stand, and face the table of showbread, the lamp stand is giving me light to see the bread. Jesus said that he is our daily bread and he must go so the comforter can come and he will teach us, he will be the source of the fire that gives light to the true revelation of Jesus, in the bread and wine. You can not see the revealed Word until you have experienced the influence and overshadowing of the Holy Ghost in that lamp stand.

Process of Pouring
But there were bowls there and they would pour out what was referred to in the Old Testament as libations. The word “pour” it out and that’s what we’re getting ready to see here, there’s going to be a pouring out of the blood of Jesus. A pouring out of his covenantal blood. Remember one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels. Where are the four beasts? These are not beasts like hideous creatures, they were just beyond his ability to define them. We met those beasts over in the 4th and 5th chapter and they give unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of God’s wrath.

Matthew 23
35That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar. 36Verily I say [/i[i]]unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.

Rejected Redemption Transforms Into Wrath
Jesus is talking to Israel. And he came unto his own, and his own received him not . . . right? Whenever Pilate stands there at the trial of Jesus and he washes his hands of the whole thing and declared that Jesus was innocent and the reply of the people was to let the blood of the Lamb be upon them and their children. Instead of drinking of his blood, remember Jesus said “take, eat, this is my body, do this in remembrance of me.” And “drink, this is my blood that was shed for you.”

Instead of receiving communion, instead of embracing the New Covenant, Israel rejected it for the Old Covenant and in that covenant, you weren’t saved by grace, you were saved by keeping a law that couldn’t be kept. Hebrews goes on to tell us that in order to establish a New Covenant, God first had to do away with the Old one. But that’s the one Israel wouldn’t let go of, so as a result, instead of receiving God’s grace, they got his wrath.

No Condemnation, But . . .laws are Still in Effect
If you don’t receive the blood of Jesus, then his blood is not a covenant to you, it’s a curse on you. It’s like the law of gravity, nobody is condemning you for stepping off a ledge, but you gotta know that once your foot leaves the edge, you’re still going down because that’s simply the law of gravity at work in the natural realm. So, the natural law had to be done away with in order for the spiritual law to go into affect, but if you reject the law of life, it becomes the source of your death, that’s just how it works.

What we just read in Matthew 23, Jesus just prophesied that 2,000 years ago “before” the cross and before the inhalation of the nation of Israel. Jesus was saying in the above passage that “you haven’t received me nor have you received my prophets and as confession of their own claim for rejecting Christ for Barabas, and then declaring his blood be upon them and their children, he’s saying here, that generation will see this come to pass.

Repeating Myself?
I know we’ve covered this before, but like everything else you see in Scripture, when there is a repetition of the same thing, it’s emphasizing the importance of the thing being repeated. Same here, yes I’m repeating myself with this thought and picture of Israel calling the curse upon themselves, but the reason for the repetition is because that is a huge key in why everything else was happening the way it was. It was why the Romans over-ran Israel. It was why the non-christian Jews were trying to wipe out the Christian Jews, everything pivoted off that declaration. It also had a great deal to do with why Revelation was written. Not to warn us about an antichrist or one-world government, or the natural world coming to an end, it’s about a natural nation rejecting it’s spiritual King.

So historically speaking, in 70 A.D. one generation after those men cried that out, it happened. The blood of Jesus was poured out upon them in wrath. Because they wouldn’t receive communion, they received a curse. Drinking is inescapable. Either we are ministers of the New Covenant as it serves us in the communion of Jesus Christ or it’s poured upon our heads. Either we drink it, or it’s poured upon our heads.

The bowls that he refers to, like I mentioned earlier, goes all the way back to the tabernacle of Moses. Now there’s something here that I want you to see before we get on into chapter 16 that’s very important. What John is describing here in these verses of Scripture concerning these viles full of blood in 15:7. In the opening verses of chapter 16 we’ll see these viles are full of blood which are full of the wrath of God.

7And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever and ever.

Blood of Purification
What he’s describing here is very similar to the purification offering that you can read about in the Old Testament. And if you’re not familiar with the purification offering, whenever Israel, the nation sinned against God; the whole nation, then the land was defiled. When the land was defiled, the priests were required to perform sacrificial rights that many of you have probably heard about. In order for the land to be cleansed, they had to go in and take the blood of a sacrificial animal and sprinkle it seven times against the veil. It’s also done in the purification process in the cleansing of lepers as well.

How many times did the priest sprinkle the blood against the veil? How many bowls do we have here? How many angels are engaged in this part of John’s vision? Whenever they sinned as a nation they would have to sprinkle the blood of the animal on the veil seven times. But in this passage of Scripture, they are not having the blood of reconciliation being sprinkled against the veil on behalf of them, but the blood of rejection is being sprinkled toward them.

I feel like I need to keep saying this because there are a lot of people in the last few months that still have this feeling that I have this vendetta toward the natural Jew, that is not the case at all. But I want to also tell you that this is not a natural issue. This isn’t about a natural nation, it’s about anybody that rejects Jesus. What can wash away my sins? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. They rejected his blood. Instead of accepting, they rejected and in that case, the whole thing is reversed. Instead of the blood being poured out for their reconciliation, it’s being poured out upon them in plagues. In seven bowls.

1And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.

¬Walk in the SPIRIT
I want to remind you here, that I don’t think John, when he speaks of seven angels here, that he’s referring to seven heavenly winged creatures. You may argue that it’s all in the interpretation of it, no, if I go back to chapters two and three, the letters written to the seven churches are written to the “angel”, that doesn’t mean that there are winged creatures there overseeing the congregations. The word angel simply means messenger, more appropriately it’s probably the bishop or the Pastor the set ministry of that house.

Finicky Eaters
So what “I” believe we’re seeing here in these seven angels, if the principle of interpretation runs consistent through Scripture is that these seven angels here are “sent out”. They are Apostolic ministries, they are “sent”. The word “apostle” means “to send”. These are apostolic ministries that are sent out to preach a “Word”. A lot of people think that they can be neutral toward the Word of God. Some of you think that you can come in here and set week in and week out and you can be neutral toward the Word of God. You can sit there and assess and analyze and scrutinize what is being said by me or by anybody else in a pulpit or on a platform and you think you can remain neutral. You tell yourself “I don’t necessarily have to take that or leave it.”

The problem with that is, once God sends a word to you, either it brings reconciliation to you, or it brings rejection to you. As I have already said in so many ways, either the blood of Jesus is applied to your life and it delivers you of the curse, or it’s poured on your head and it brings condemnation. Again, the immediate argument from the church would be, “Doesn’t the Bible say “therefore there is no condemnation for those that are in Christ Jesus?” That’s exactly right, “to those that are in Christ Jesus.”

I just want to stay here a little longer if you don’t mind, you can sit at home and watch television and develop and evolve certain opinions that you have about what you see. You can sit there in your mind and “hold court” on what is unfolding and you become judge and jury and you don’t even have to say anything, which is the same pattern that follows you to church “Well I didn’t say anything . . “ It doesn’t make any difference whether anybody around you has heard, the Bible says he’s a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

I Am an Angel
It doesn’t make any difference whether anybody knows your opinion, right, bad, wrong, indifferent, whatever. He knows. “All things are naked in his sight. . . “ Hebrews 4:12, 13 So whenever he sends a message to you, an angel, and you’re looking at your angel that speaking to you right now. I understand we all have our “guardian” angels, but also I’m an angel that’s sent “to” you. There are angels that go “with” you but I’m the one that is sent “to” you.

Hebrews 4
12For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do

Message translation
12God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon's scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. 13Nothing and no one is impervious to God's Word. We can't get away from it--no matter what.

You say “Wow, that’s mighty arrogant.” No, it’s just stating the truth of the reality. I’m a messenger of God, would you not agree with that? Well, it’s true whether you believe it or not, I just thought I’d give you and opportunity to agree with God (dry humor). Matthew 10 “He that receiveth you, receiveth me.” If you don’t receive me, you don’t receive him. You may say, “Well I just don’t particularly like the way you look or the way you sound or your attitude.” It doesn’t make any difference whether or not you like the choice of transportation from which the message comes, it’s not up for discussion as to what your preference is to the vehicle that God uses to transport his truth to you, it’s your responsibility to find a way to receive it.

The Reason for the Tough Love
Tough words to swallow perhaps, but there are so many churches out there today that are bound by the complaints of the congregations because the Pastor is trying to keep all of them happy and doesn’t dare proclaim the message in the original form from which it came for fear that the congregation will walk out on him. There’s no power in that. Power comes through the humble, not the majority, or the most sensitive. Truth is God’s power in it’s original form. A catchy phrase in most cases, is simply man’s way of sweetening up the truth enough so that it will stick with the listeners who’ve been soured in their own imaginations.

Real, powerful truth, often comes in the form of fire. We don’t want it, but if we don’t expose ourselves to it, the junk in our lives will never be removed because we’re so quick to take offense to anything that threatens the earthy things we’ve come comfortable to protect. Perhaps it would do us well to meditate on what “Love the Lord your God with all of your heart, mind, soul, and strength” really means. It means he wants ALL of you, and the parts you hold back are the parts that his fire needs to burn and purify out of you.

Angels come in Different Forms
Be aware not to become judgmental over the form of the messenger, or angel that he sends to you. He may send you a rooster next time like he did Peter. Or an ass that will bray at you like what happened to Balaam. Or he may just cause those around you to throw you overboard from your comfy mindsets and leave you to drown in the very seas that you thought you were protected from, only for God to then come and swallow you up in the form of a stinky, unimaginable belly of a beast that does nothing but swim and eat, and you’re in the middle of it’s digestive track. But that’s where you’ve put yourself because you’ve chosen to do the opposite of what God has been instructing you to do. You should be happy the message is coming from somebody who’s as nice looking as me.

“Well, I’m just thinking about it.” Perhaps that’s the problem, you’re thinking about it. You need to experience the act of John the Baptist who’s ax is laid at the root of your tree. The root of the tree, what tree? The tree of the knowledge of good and evil because all who choose to let that tree become their identity, lose the ability to have and produce profitable fruits. Can you hear the axe chopping? I’m cutting your tree down so that the tree of life can grow where the tree of knowledge that is rooted up in you . ..somebody say amen! I hear the axe, don’t you?

Revelation 16
1And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth

Now let me tell you something here that would be really good for you to do later on. Again, I can’t emphasize this enough, the thing that I appreciate as much as anything about this book that I hold in my hand is it’s continuity. All my life, even through Bible college I was taught to interpret this book by going to the commentators, men who were lost in some time and space where God “had” moved, but they had not moved on with God. What we’re reading here in chapter 16, you’re going to see that every one of these plagues we’re about to read here in chapter 16, every one of them can be found in the same plagues that we’ve read about in the book of exodus.

2And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.

What’s in the Blood?
Some of you are going to go home tonight and turn on your TV to some prophecy preacher that will tell you that this grievous sore has something to do with aids. It has nothing at all to do with aids or any other disease they will want to pin it to. This first messenger that goes out and pours out his vile, what’s in his vile? Blood. What was in the original bowl in Moses’ tabernacle? Blood. So if he’s pouring it out, this blood, being the blood of the lamb, or the blood of Jesus. And he’s pouring it out on the people who had the mark of the beast and who worshiped the image.

And this mark that we talked about has to do with the mark that is put in man’s mind. The mark of the beast, we went over this earlier. That’s the reason why in Ezekiel 9 God’s people are also marked on their foreheads, but in Ezekiel it’s with the mark of the Cross. We focusing on (here I go again) the mark of the beast with a carnal understanding, computer chips, tattoos, implants and all this nonsense.

Editor’s Note
Interesting to note, and I think everyone that reads this will be able to relate, that the emphasis on this mark changes with the passing of generations. For the longest time in my growing up years, the mark of the beast went hand-in-hand with the antichrist which many believed would be Russia because of our fear of their instability as a nation with common sense. The big bomb, We as a nation were always looking over our shoulder at them worrying about whether or not they’ll blow us all up with a nuclear bomb. And the church bought into that and shaped it in with their theologies of the end time events.

But then the unthinkable happened, Russia collapsed! While all that was going on, there came the emergence of the computer age and with it, again, the church conveniently incorporated “that” in with the theory that the beast was actually a computer that contained the information of every living individual. Social security numbers, bar codes, credit cards, all of these were used as warnings to the nation of the ever-present mark of the beast. The key I want to point out here is, the fact that it changed at all is proof that it’s nonsense. Does not Scripture refer to false prophets as “wandering stars?” A wandering star is one that constantly is changing it’s position.

Keeping in mind that we, as a church, as a body of Christ do change, we metamorphous into a mature bride due process. We lose our own identity and become that of Christ’s. But that’s not the same as continuing to altering your doctrine after current events proved your previous one wrong. There’s a huge difference between modifying theology according to current events, and letting go, transforming, maturing in all aspects of your life which changes your entire identity to become Christ’s. End of Note

The Mark is on the Mind
There’s a marking that’s going on today, on the foreheads of men that’s been going on for 2,000 years, and it’s a mark that was described in Ezekiel, there’s an ink horn and the messenger is marking the church with a mark, which the Hebrew word for is “tov” and to spell it is to simply make a cross as we would make the letter “t” That’s the mark that was put on all the foreheads, or the minds of those that longed for the presence of God to live in their nation.

It’s in the Volume of the Book

But this blood is poured out upon them and a noisome and grievous sore fell upon the people. Remember what I said earlier, every one of these things we’re seeing here, we see back in the plagues of Egypt. Remember what we studied earlier in the trumpets? Compare what we covered in the trumpets, what we’re seeing with the bowls, and go back to Exodus chapters 7, 8, 9, and look at the 10 plagues and you’ll find that they parallel perfectly.

How to Rid the Plague of Boils
This noisome sore, it’s original root meaning comes from the boils of one of the plagues that came upon Egypt as a result of Pharaoh’s heart being hardened and not releasing God’s people. Remember what God told Moses to do to remove that plague? He was to go to the furnace and scoop up the ashes in it, what furnace? It’s the furnace in which they baked bricks in order to build the kingdom of Egypt. God told Moses to go to that furnace where they bake their bricks to build the mighty cities of Egypt, which spiritually is speaking of a house of bondage, scoop up ashes and throw it into the air. Showing once again, the very thing they took pride in, and identified themselves with, became the curse of the nation. Israel did the same thing with it’s traditions of men.

Historical and Prophetical
Scripture says when ashes fell on the Egyptians, boils, grievous sores, broke out on the Egyptians, that’s what he’s talking about here. That is the historical picture, now lets see the prophetical one. There’s a grievous sore that fell on man that he couldn’t be healed of, he was full of infection. Whenever boils break out on the surface of my skin, I can try every remedy known to man to try to get rid of it, but the problem is when it breaks out from my head to the sole of my feet, which is the example we see all through the Old Testament, that the problem is not in the sore, but it’s in my blood.

You know why you have boils pop out on your skin? It’s because there’s something wrong in your blood! That’s the reason why when the blood of Jesus was poured out on the people who had the mark of the beast and not the mark of Christ on their minds, instead of it delivering them, it caused their grievous sore or their sin, to become worse. Remembering the story of a man named Uzziah, He was lifted up in his heart and full of pride, before this, God helped him while he was humble, but it happened that he got mad at the priests and he had a priest’s censor in his hand.

What’s in a censor? Ashes, embers, burning incense, and as he lifted this censor, the Bible tells us that leprosy broke out on his forehead. Why his forehead? Because Uzziah was a type of how man lifts himself up, like Satan in Ezekiel and Isaiah where he says “ I will lift myself up above God” That’s the mark of the beast. When in my mind I’m greater than God, in 2 Thessalonians where the man of sin sets in the temple of God and exalts himself above God and declares himself to be God.

2Ch 26:19
Then Uzziah was wroth, and [had] a censer in his hand to burn incense: and while he was wroth with the priests, the leprosy even rose up in his forehead before the priests in the house of the LORD, from beside the incense altar.

Scripture says “You” are the temple of the Holy Ghost and when your carnal mind rises up and decides it’s going to play God, then all the sudden, leprosy breaks out on your forehead. And not only are you sick there, but you’re sick all over. However, lepers were routinely cleansed when they were under the obedience of God’s laws through the sprinkling of the blood of a dove over them seven times according to Leviticus. Can you see the spiritual implications or symbolism of that?

That’s the grievous sores, not aids, it’s the sore of sin. Hopefully this will make better sense to you than what’s been taught from the minds of men all these years. Remember your beginnings, “Walk in the spirit”. You’ll have a terribly hard time understanding any of this if you’re spending most of your time interpreting this book with your natural mind and understanding.

3And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea

Sea Natural, or a Type?
Understanding with spiritual eyes, this second vial that was poured out, the messenger poured his message out upon the sea. Was this sea to be understood as a curse upon our natural oceans? Or could it be perhaps this sea was a symbol of something else? What does the sea represent prophetically again? Was this messenger actually a winged creature that took a bowl full of blood and poured it out upon the Mediterranean sea? John’s on the Isle Patmos, which is in the Mediterranean.

Remembering this book is a book of symbols and signs, “sent and ‘signified’” according to the very first verse. We then can understand that this was not to be taken as something that either has or is going to happen to our physical bodies of water, but instead it’s to symbolize something entirely different. Now, we can look at it historically and see how it played out prophetically, but if we try to take it literally, then we also have to say that Jesus is a lamb with seven eyes. It’s either all symbolic, or all literal, which is it going to be?

Natural “and” Prophetical?
You may argue that it’s meant to be both. Then that begs the question, who decides where the literal stops and the prophetic begins? This is why you have, not only so many variations of it’s meaning, but also so many misdirected readers. The carnal mind can never remain consistent when it comes to spiritual matters. You can’t rely on man’s mind. In fact Scripture warns you to do just the opposite. Proverbs 3:5 I’ve covered this before but it’s worth reminding you that we are quick to agree that we need to let Scripture interpret Scripture, but then we ignore what Scripture says when it doesn’t fit our theology and we attempt to call it as we think it should be rather than see it in the same realm from which it was written.

So, no, I don’t think when I see Jesus I’m going to see a white furry creature that has seven eyes in it’s head. He was “like unto” a lamb. He also saw him as a lamp stand. Romans 1:20, God’s key to revelation is understanding he uses natural things to symbolize spiritual truths. The sea that he’s talking about speaks of humanity So he’s pouring the blood of Jesus out upon humanity

Isa 57:20 But the wicked [are] like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt.

Eph 4:14
That we [henceforth] be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, [and] cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

2 Tape Twenty Three Part 2 on Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:21 am


Revelation 16:3
……and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea

Death to the Souls of the Sea

What does it mean that every living soul in the sea died? Is this to say fish have souls? What’s he saying? When he poured out his blood on all of “humanity”, prophetically, there was a dead man that was put into the sea. And his death caused the death of every living soul. (! Corinthians 15) The first Adam was made a living soul but the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. The death of Jesus will cause a death to your soul, but at the same time, it will bring a resurrection to your spirit. Again, this is not to be taken as a natural death that will come from the natural sea being cursed.

Context of the Natural Readers
What sea was there in Israel in the land of Palestine. Remember the setting of Revelation? Yes, it’s written to seven different churches in Asia-minor, but it’s context is more appropriately set in the land of Palestine where Israel is being judged as a result of their rejection of the Messiah. Whenever Jesus walked in the temple and he stated “greater than Solomon is here”. They didn’t understand what he was saying, “Destroy this temple and I’ll raise it up in three days.” Just as many who don’t understand what Jesus is prophetically saying in today’s time, they couldn’t comprehend what he was telling them at that time either.

Quick Note
Hebrews 13:8 again, is a passage that we as Foursquare members should have a pretty good understanding of because it’s in every sanctuary of the denomination. If it’s true that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever, then it shouldn’t be too hard to grasp that the way Jesus preached then is the same as is the way he speaks today, in parables or as we read in Romans 1:20, he uses natural objects and situations to illuminate spiritual truths, but if you’re not walking in the spirit, with the “mind” of Christ, all you see is the natural message which is limited at best.
End Note

They tried to turn Jesus attention to the man-made structures that gave Jerusalem her reputation for being a great religious city, home to the temple of the Almighty God. “Look at the wonderful talent the architects had in laying out these buildings, aren’t they impressive??? Jesus responded by saying “Every one of these buildings will be leveled, not one stone will be left on top the other. The foundation will crumble like a house built on sand.” It happened 30 years later in 70 AD.

Pouring Out
And a year after that, the historian Josephus records the destruction of the temple and he even describes what is spoken in Joel chapter 2. “In the last days I will pour out. . .” What did we just read about these angels here in Revelation? What are they doing? They are “pouring out”. In the last days I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh and your sons and daughters shall prophesy . . .” Remember that?

Joel 2
25And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpillar, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you. 26And ye shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you: and my people shall never be ashamed. 27And ye shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the LORD your God, and none else: and my people shall never be ashamed. 28And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: 29And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. 30And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. 31The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the LORD come. 32And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call

There’s No Gap of Time There
Here’s the mistake we make with this passage. According to Peter in Acts, he stated that this prophecy was being fulfilled right there in the upper room 2,000 years ago. “This is that.” But what we do is we split “this” and “that” up to fit our day. We proclaim that the “this” was verses 25-29. But then there’s a 2,000 year space in time when the “that” comes in verse 30. We blur our theology of the 7 year tribulation which we claim is yet to come, in with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit which no one can deny happened 2,000 years ago. And we the church bought it as truth.

The Truth Is . . .
The truth is, there’s no parenthesis to accommodate a 2,000 year jump between verses 29, and 30. The truth is that the things that happened in the upper room, happened in the same generation as the signs and wonders in the heavens. And when he speaks of signs in the heavens being blood, fire, smoke, darkness of the sun, it’s the description of the destruction of Jerusalem and Israel that happened 30 years after Pentecost. Josephus recorded the events of A.D. 70 with the same description as the prophecy mentions. For an entire year, the land was on fire, bodies lay strewn across the landscape, and there was a constant pillar of smoke, exactly what Joel prophesied of.

Editor’s Note
I really don’t want to confuse people with this idea of what’s to be taken literally and what’s to be taken prophetically. It may seem confusing to some because you can easily take a word of prophecy out of Scripture and say “See, this literally took place.” For example, when Isaiah speaks about the Messiah being from Bethlehem, that was literal. When the prophet spoke to Ahaz and told him that the Messiah would come from a virgin, that happened literally. In the New Testament, when the prophets came to Paul and warned him of his arrest if he were to return to Jerusalem, that was taken literally, and it happened literally.

So, there are many places in Scripture where prophecies are not intending to be taken symbolically. How do we discern between the prophetic and the literal? If I am walking in the spirit, am I then to receive a prophetic word in the literal sense? Or should I always apply it to a spiritual nature? These are questions that will lead to confusion if your temple is not in the proper alignment. By that I mean, many of us, when we get into a gray area, we’ll come up with a solution that will continue to uphold our own proclamations, doctrines, beliefs etc.

Take the example of Nathan the prophet, When David approached him about building the temple, it sounded like a great idea and Nathan knew that David was blessed by God so he simply stated what appeared to be a logical answer. “Go and do it, God will bless it.” But afterward, God spoke to the prophet and he had to retract his knee-jerk response. This is where we often mess up. There are times where we as preachers, teachers and prophets feel that when we get into a situation that is a bit foggy, we’ll jump to a logical reasoning. And unlike the prophet, we’re much more prone to ignore the thought of retracting something we’d already said, it would threaten our reputation of being in the prophetic if we were to come back and say something different.

I just get the sense that this is the predominant reason why many churches and denominations are very defensive when it comes to major changes in their doctrines. “Surely, our religious ancestors couldn’t have been wrong all these years.” So, as I have brought these questions to the surface, let me address what I accept to be truth. First, remember Peter’s experience in being part of the foundational stone that changed his name from Simon to Peter. Jesus told him that the revelation of seeing Jesus as the Messiah, Son of God, is a spiritual revealing of the nature of Jesus by God himself.

“No man taught you this, it was only revealed by God himself.”

Matthew 16
14And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets. 15He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. 18And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. 20Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that he was Jesus the Christ. 21From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. 22Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. 23But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
Message Translation
17Jesus came back, "God bless you, Simon, son of Jonah! You didn't get that answer out of books or from teachers. My Father in heaven, God himself, let you in on this secret of who I really am. 18And now I'm going to tell you who you are, really are. You are Peter, a rock. This is the rock on which I will put together my church, a church so expansive with energy that not even the gates of hell will be able to keep it out. 19"And that's not all. You will have complete and free access to God's kingdom, keys to open any and every door: no more barriers between heaven and earth, earth and heaven. A yes on earth is yes in heaven. A no on earth is no in heaven

21Then Jesus made it clear to his disciples that it was now necessary for him to go to Jerusalem, submit to an ordeal of suffering at the hands of the religious leaders, be killed, and then on the third day be raised up alive. 22Peter took him in hand, protesting, "Impossible, Master! That can never be!" 23But Jesus didn't swerve. "Peter, get out of my way. Satan, get lost. You have no idea how God works." 24Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. "Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You're not in the driver's seat; I am. Don't run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I'll show you how

Patterns of the Prophet Nathan
I didn’t realize this until just now, but in this picture, it’s an overlay of what I just mentioned with David and Nathan. Just as Nathan had a knee-jerk reaction, so Peter did also. It didn’t fit Peter’s theology of what Jesus was to become, even though he just previously received a revelation from God, confirmed by Jesus himself. The truth to this whole topic is, no matter how prophetic we think we are, no matter how great we’ve convinced ourselves how our ministry is, if we respond by natural reflex, we can get off track just as easily as the prophet Nathan, and the Apostle Peter.

So, to answer the original question, what can you take as prophetic and what is to be literal? All Scripture, prophetic or otherwise, was originally written to be understood as literal for the nation of Israel, and in most cases to that generation of time which the prophecy was given, unless otherwise specified. For instance, there were indeed, other nations that would come in and over-run Israel as a leopard, or with iron teeth, or as a bear, these examples I’m pulling off the top of my head that Daniel speaks of.

But it didn’t mean that literal leopards and bears came in, it meant that people or armies with the characteristics of these animals, leopards represent speed or swiftness, bears represent tenacity so on and so forth. These things in Daniel did happen to Israel as a nation over the course of several generations. But again, the recipient of the prophecy understood the timing of things.

Prophecy’s Primary Target Was Israel
Incidentally, I also believe that we’ve taken many of the biblical prophecies and projected them to our day when that was not the original intent. Remember the big picture, the Bible was not written as a fortune book of the future of the inhabitants of the land. It was written to illuminate the Messiah and the process of redemption to a lost world. The majority of the prophecies, I’d even venture to say all the prophecies recorded in Scripture were aimed at the chosen nation which God loved and doted over.

Those prophecies can be applied to us now on a spiritual level, but I’m not convinced that they were given to them 2, or 4 thousand years ago, as a pre-warning about what was going to happen to the United States today. So, the prophecies in the book were primarily written to the Jewish nation of Israel and were also fulfilled. But because the Word is a living thing, it’s also just as notably important to understand it’s application is also on a personal level.

Bondservant, a Dimensional Mindset
Revelation, the book, was originally written to seven specific churches, but it was also broadened to any other reader of that day. The first important thing about this book is what we covered at the very beginning and sprinkled all through this study. We must understand clearly that it was written to those who were bond-servants. (Which is the spiritual Israel.. . which is us) This is a definitive picture showing that understanding will only come to those that approach this book with the correct spiritual alignment. Bondservants, as we discussed at great length in the first chapter, are those that realize they aren’t serving God because of an unpaid debt or duty, but because they know they don’t have to, and still choose to want to.

The second most important thing that sets this book apart from other prophecies is, it specifically explains that everything in this book is signed and signified. It’s all in symbols. That in and of itself, should answer the question as to whether or not it should be taken literal. Signed and signified means, no, it’s not literal, but it’s symbolizing something deeper. Why? Jesus answered that question when the disciples questioned him about his ministry being solely in the form of parables when he spoke to the crowds.

Why All the Symbols?
The purpose of the symbolism is two-fold. First, it’s to sift out those that are in this for all the wrong reasons. It’s the pearls that are not meant for the swine. We look at that as insulting because in our culture, it’s an insulting remark to call someone a pig. But the truth is, a swine or pig in Scripture was an unclean animal.

Jesus is simply saying you can’t mix spiritual truth with unspiritual understanding. The second reason for the symbolism or speaking in forms of parables, as Jesus stated, it’s to get the attention of the listener and cause them to press in for more. Just as you can’t truly know the fullness of Christ by half/heartedly believing in him, you can’t breeze through the Revelation of Jesus Christ and expect to understand the depths of it’s meanings. To see this book as a hymnal, as the first century church saw it, it requires spiritual vision, which requires an intimate relationship with Christ.
End Note
Last Days and Antichrists
Some of us in our Pentecostal pride are convinced we are living in the last days. The last days started on the day of Pentecost. Every generation that has preceded ours has preached and taught that they were living in the last days. We’ve seen so many antichrist identified from Hitler on through to Gorbechauf and we’ve lined up their names in some numerical order to try to explain that they are the antichrist. Even though John wrote that there are many antichrists that were already in the world then. There is not some antichrist being groomed in the middle east or in Europe. The spirit of the antichrist has been in the world for 2,000 years and it’s even found a home in many churches as well. It’s in the pew or chair you’re sitting in right now. The spirit of the antichrist is between your ears!

You were born and shapen in iniquity and the carnal mind is at war with the Christ that is in you. Christ in me, not Christ coming from heaven. Even though he will do that in his time. Christ in me is the hope of Glory!. What is trying to keep down the hope of glory? The spirit of the antichrist. “Anti” = against. The carnal mind is “against” God. It always keeps coming back to this.

Josephus records:
While primarily the significance of this plague is symbolic, that we read about in these last few verses. To the uncleanness with the contact of blood, Leviticus 7:15, 17 and Numbers 5. There are close parallels between the actual events of the great tribulation . . .

When is the great tribulation?
When I deal with Daniel’s 70th week, 490 years, I’ll prove to you that the great tribulation isn’t something that’s coming in the future, but the great tribulation is something that’s been on the earth since the first century believers. Now, you want to tell me they were not in great tribulation? You tell those people who had their heads cut off, being sawed in two, having their arms pulled off, fed live to animals and every disgusting despicable form of torture you can describe, you tell those people they weren’t in great tribulation.

And when you read Matthew 24 where he spoke of this tribulation he was explaining then, would come up on “that” generation. Yeah, I know, we’ve taught that to mean the generation that sees those signs will be the generation that sees his returning. But again, we’ve taken things out of context so much that the truth is barely recognizable to us anymore. But back to this record of Josephus. On one occasion concerning the blood in the sea. What sea is there in Palestine? The one that Jesus walked on, his disciples fished in, the one he cooked fish by. Historically speaking which is one of the two ways we’ve been looking at this book. Historically and what . . .prophetically. We’re learning to understand what it meant then and what it means to us now.

Brief History 70 AD
In the year 70 AD everything was coming to a head in Jerusalem on a religious plain. It was during the siege of Jerusalem, remember history tells us that this was during the time when Titus, not biblical Titus, but a Roman military representative who was sent to Jerusalem to bring the civil wars back into control. Jews, specifically the Sadducees, Pharisees, and Herodians were fighting amongst themselves over religious rights. It was getting so out of hand that Rome had to send it’s own army in to try to regain order.

That was what happened historically, but if you think about it, the same thing is happening among the churches today. We don’t need to worry about the world destroying us, we’re doing a good enough job destroying ourselves. If we don’t receive communion with Him and with one another and understand that it’s our differences that makes unity anyway, we’ll never see the maturity of the bride made full. Unity is not about sameness, it’s about diversity. How narrow-minded are we that we feel we all have to believe the same thing.

That’s why we left our traditional mind-sets behind us, because we came to realize that the body of Christ is much larger than the narrow minded men and denominationalism. That’s not a shot at men in the organizational denomination, I understand that the body of Christ is bigger than all of that.

Josephus Writes
Thousands of Jewish rebels fled to the sea of Galilee to escape the Roman massacre setting out on the lake in Galilee in small, flimsy boats. They were soon pursued and overtaken by the sturdy rafts of Roman superior forces. The Jews couldn’t escape to the land, or sustain the naval battle that ensued. Disaster overtook them and they were sent to the bottom of the sea, boats and all. Some of them tried to break through the barrage, but the lances of the Romans easily reached them, killing others by leaping over the sides of the boats and passing their swords through their bodies.

Sometimes their rafts were so closed in, the Jews were caught in the middle and captured with their vessels. If any of those that had been plunged into the waters came to the surface, they were quickly dispatched with an arrow or a raft overtook them. If in their extremity, they attempted to climb on board the enemy’s raft, the Romans cut their heads off or their hands, so that their wretched bodies died on every side in countless numbers in every possible way. As they threw themselves on them, they were speared while they were in the water.

Many jumped ashore and they were killed by the Romans. One could see the whole lake the sea of Galilee, stained with blood and crammed with corpses, for not a man could escape. The beaches were strewn with wrecks and with swollen bodies in the hot, clammy decay of the air so foul with the catastrophe in the morning of the Jews as they revolted against the Romans.

Now what he’s describing there, Josephus was on hand to take an account of. He’s talking about the sea of Galilee turning red with blood as a result of dead bodies floating in it. Now if you’re waiting for the seas on “this” planet to turn to blood, you’ve missed the whole point. Because all of this has to be understood “historically” before it can be understood prophetically.

Revelation 16
4And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood. 5And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus. 6For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy.

The Blood of the Prophets
This is a very key passage. Pay special attention to verse 6. Who shed the blood of the prophets? We just read about it in Matthew 23. Who shed the blood of the prophets? The Jewish people that rejected their message of repentance. Just as their ancestors rejected and killed the prophets, these Jews also rejected and killed the one who sent the prophets. And he said “Because they shed the blood of the prophets, then I’m going to give them blood to drink as well. So he turns the source of the water, to blood, the sea of Galilee.

He says that’s what they’re worthy of, isn’t that much the same of what was said about Jesus in chapter 5? “Thou hast redeemed us from every nation, kindred and tongue (Rev. 5:9). “Thy blood, and thou art worthy . .” they got what they were worthy of. They rejected the blood of redemption, that made them worthy of the blood of judgment, which was their own blood rather than the redemptive blood of Jesus.

Luke 11
49Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute: 50That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation;

Matthew 23
25Woe 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. 26Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. 27Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. 28Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. 29Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchers of the righteous, 30And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. 31Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. 32Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. 33Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell? 34Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: 35That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar. 36Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation. 37O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! 38Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.

Message translation
35"You can't squirm out of this: Every drop of righteous blood ever spilled on this earth, beginning with the blood of that good man Abel right down to the blood of Zechariah, Barachiah's son, whom you murdered at his prayers, is on your head. 36All this, I'm telling you, is coming down on you, on your generation

Why did the judgment of their ancestors fall on them? Because this generation Jesus is addressing here is the generation that didn’t just reject the prophets and their message, they rejected Jesus himself, in the flesh. After seeing this, read Isaiah 49.

Isa 49:26
And I will feed them that oppress thee with their own flesh; and they shall be drunken with their own blood, as with sweet wine: and all flesh shall know that I the LORD [am] thy Savior and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.

The funny thing about this, the thing that’s so unusual about it is now, all this that was said concerning how God would bring judgment on those who came against Israel, now, it’s been reversed and is coming upon them. In Deuteronomy 28, God explains clearly to the people of Israel what will happen if they reject him and his message. In that chapter, he describes specifically what Israel experienced later on.

53And you'll end up cannibalizing your own sons and daughters that GOD, your God, has given you. When the suffering from the siege gets extreme, you're going to eat your own babies. 54The most gentle and caring man among you will turn hard, his eye evil, against his own brother, his cherished wife, and even the rest of his children who are still alive, 55refusing to share with them a scrap of meat from the cannibal child-stew he is eating. He's lost everything, even his humanity, in the suffering of the siege that your enemy mounts against your fortified towns.

Prophecy fulfilled to the Letter
And that’s exactly what the Jewish people did when they began to starve to death under the siege in Jerusalem when the Romans first came in, they began to eat their own babies. We say that’s a terrible historic fact, but the same thing is true prophetically also. I’m not talking about the subject of abortion in the natural sense. I’m talking about whenever there is someone borne among us, we hear Zion travails and she brings forth children and there are new ones that are birthed into the kingdom of God.

Personal Application
Rather than us maturing and seeking out growth and maturity and progression in God like we ought to so that we can be an example to them, we wind up devouring them in our carnality and back-biting. Paul stated that “you do fight and ‘devour’ one another.” Cannibalism is a horrific thing to consider, but Christian cannibalism goes on all the time. Where people would rather feed on one another rather than feed on the body of Christ. They would rather feed on one another’s carnality. I mean they spend more time on the “hell-ephone” I mean the telephone, talking about one another rather than talking about the marvelous glory of Jesus.

Some of you this week will have lunch with somebody and you won’t be eating lunch, but you’ll be eating one another. You’re eating your brother, your sister. I can tell immediately when you’re having me for lunch and I’m not invited or present. Your children begin to shy away from me. See you can hide it and pretend life is easy and you camouflage it into something else, but your little ones haven’t learned yet how to be a hypocrite and they are still transparent in their innocent lives where all your mud and dirt come out through them. That’s what it means when Scripture states we bite and devour one another

Gal 5:15
But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.

Revelation 16
7And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.

Blaming versus Claiming
You know sometimes whenever God begins to judge, our immediate knee-jerk response is to begin to blame everything that is going wrong in our life against the devil. When sometimes, it’s God pouring his blood out on your head. We Charasmatics have been taught in such a shallow way that anything negative that happens in my life is of the devil. Have you ever read in Isaiah where God says “I am the one that created the blacksmith that blows the coals on the fire.” (Is. 54:16)

Understand the devil can only get loose in your life by God’s permission. We quickly jump up and declare “No weapon formed against me shall prosper!” and we quote the Scripture all wrong. We take that sound-bite out of context and you don’t understand that when the Bible says that no weapon formed against me will prosper” it’s in the context of him saying he is the one that created the smith that blows the coal on the fire. He’s the one that created the destroyer. And sometimes, he lets his weapons fashion you into a weapon. Sometimes he lets things come against you and his hot breath out of hell be belched on you, not so that it will melt you, but that it will temper you and turn you into the steel that you need to be made out of.

Isaiah. 54
14In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee. 15Behold, they shall surely gather together, but not by me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake. 16Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy. 17No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD

Discerning Between Enemy Attacks vs. Spiritual Pruning
If the princes of this world had known they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory and sometimes God lets you be beaten and hung up to be crucified in front of everybody and you’re hanging there on your personal cross crying out “My God, my God, why has thou forsaken me.” And your natural mind is screaming out for deliverance but something deep in you speaks and says “If I will not despise the cross, but embrace it, the resurrection is three days away.

You’re not going to get to the upper room until you first go through the garden of Gethsemane. You’re not going to experience the crown of glory until you go through the crown of thorns. There’s an easy believe-ism that’s been taught for so many years in shallow charismatic circles where you don’t have to go through anything, but let me tell you something, I had to go through some stuff to get what I’ve got. I didn’t learn it sitting in some sterile Bible college with some professor that hasn’t stood in the trenches for years. Or some teacher who stood up there and talked about facts.

What I’m preaching here with my own personal passion, whatever revelations you’ve heard in this house through these lips of clay, didn’t come as a result of me sitting in some academical environment where I sat and listened to some professor which is all he was, a “profess-er”. But it came as a result of me going through PROCESS. “I’m a living epistle read by every man. I buy the marks of Jesus in my body. I’m not glorifying myself, but I understand “greater”, a greater weight of glory is involved in him knowing that what I go through is a light thing. It’s a light affliction, it only lasts for a moment.

The Privilege of Persecution
Verse 7 here is the epitome of the phrase “Severe mercy.” We cry “why is God letting people treat me like they’re treating me?” Why does God let them talk to me in such a rude way like that? Why is God letting go through all of this? The truth is, He’s not “letting” you go through it, you “get” to go through it. He was despised and rejected by men. You want to know Jesus? It’s not going to happen just because you go to an altar and let somebody lay hands on you.

“I want to know ‘Jesus’! I want to get in a prayer-line and get slain in the spirit! I want somebody to prophesy over me!” The Bible doesn’t say that was the way Paul came to know Jesus. He came to know him in the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his suffering. ‘Knowing” him is the 3rd dimension of what Paul says there.

Phl 3:10
That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

Conformable = summorphizo {soom-mor-fee'-dzo) to be conformed to, receive the same form as

You get to “know” him by experiencing the first dimension, suffering, second dimension, resurrection, and achieve intimate relationship, third dimension. Outer court, holy place, most holy place. Interestingly, it takes all three dimensions to conform to the cross. But you’re not going to know him without first going through suffering at the altar of sacrifice, before you can experience his resurrection life which brings you before the veil where intimacy with him awaits you.

Righteous, it’s right. There’s a lot of things my flesh is screaming about that’s not right. It’s not right . . . I’m sure these first century Jewish people could point back to their lineage and to their spiritual heritage. In fact that’s why they started blaspheming in these next few verses, this blasphemy that is going on, which is actually recorded where the Jewish people began to blaspheme the God of the Christians. They chewed their tongues because the next vile that is poured out, causes them to be scorched with great heat.

Revelation 16
8And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire. 9And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory

Scorching of the Son
What does being scorched with great heat mean? There are only two other passages in the whole New Testament where something is scorched with great heat. What are we doing? We’re letting the Bible interpret itself. Again, the church wants to connect this with current events, such as global warming. If you have just a little discernment you can watch the evening news and they’ll show you when the highs and the lows were in the last hundred years. And they’ll tell you that the weather has cycles it goes through where it gets extra mild in the winter and cool in the summer, but that passes. Yet the nay-sayers out there quickly try to turn a normal cycle into a global tragedy.

Briefly Addressing the Numbers
Now this isn’t to say that they never reflect spiritual changes in climate, I’m aware of all of that, but when I read here about this 4th angel . . .which angel is it? And how many are there all together? Remember when we told you about the seven seals and the seven trumpets and now the seven vials that they correspond perfectly with the seven days of creation? What was created on the 4th day of creation? The sun. Matthew 13 and Mark 4 are the only two other places where the sun scorches men.

It talks about the sower going forth to sew the seed which is the word of God. And because they had no root in themselves, the sun came up and scorched, same word as what we see here, and scorched the seed because it didn’t have any root. The sun speaks of persecution, it beats down. It obviously speaks of Christ as well, he came to this earth in bodily form on the fourth day and to those who have no root in him, become scorched by his presence because they reject him as their rock. And they have no foundation and no roots to draw water from to enable them to sustain the spiritual wilderness we all experience on our way to get to the heart of God. Are you following me?

Addressing the Sun’s Significance
And you better believe persecution is going to come because of the word. Did it come to the first century believers? There’s no doubt. Initially in the Old Testament, what did the sun, moon and stars represent? Israel, right? Joseph’s dream saw the sun, moon and stars bow down to him, which we all know now were his brothers and parents, remember that? Joseph is an Old Testament type of Christ and the sun and moon and stars did have to bow down to him. Remember in chapter 7 or so where it says the sun is going to be darkened, what do you think that meant?

Historically, it meant lights out on natural Israel. Prophetically it spoke Jesus, the sun, dying on the cross. In AD 70 the lights for Israel went out. In fact, Josephus records the city was burning so much that it blocked the rays of the sun that it became dark in the middle of the day. Then it was dark when Jesus was on the cross. Go back further yet and you’ll find it was dark when Israel was in the iron chains of Egypt when God was bringing them out. Go back further and you’ll find in Genesis 1 where darkness covered the face of the deep. You following me? You understand that every time God brings recreation, (Reformation) every time God brings us out of something, in to something.

Quick Note
In the process of over-viewing this, I realized that this very church also followed this same pattern. Our oppression was not that of unbelievers, but it was we, ourselves that cause this church to go though it’s splits to where there was nothing but a remnant left. Even though that experience cause many to question what was happening, it was still a process that all who strive for the resurrection of Christ must go through.

The beauty is, now that we as a church have experienced the reformation of God due process, we can now lead individuals who come to us out of the same thing. We’ve been there, we understand that God allows us to endure these things so that we become stronger and mature in Him by continuing to put our faith in him regardless of how bad things appear on the outside, resurrection is on the way. The hardships of life are proof that God is creating something new in us, we just need to hold on and let it take it’s course and continue giving God glory for his infinite wisdom and love for us.
End Note

Isaiah 60:2,
“there will be darkness, yea gross darkness upon the face of the people, but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.

Proclaiming Darkness and LIGHT
There’s a darkness upon the face of the people today. You may ask “So what are you? A day preacher or a night preacher?” “Yes!” I preach a little bit of night and a whole lot of day!! Why? Because I understand like Peter says, that the daystar has risen and is announcing the dawning of a new day. Some preachers, all you hear is “darkness, darkness, darkness, yeah it’s dark out there in the world. And the reason why that’s all you can see is because you feed on a steady diet of CNN to dictate your Jesus timeline.

The Bible says the path of the righteous shall shine brighter and brighter until the coming end of the full day. The day is not a 24-hour period of time, it’s a person. We went over this at the very beginning of the book when John stated that he was in the day of the Lord and praying in the spirit, he wasn’t setting along the beach by himself looking over the Mediterranean on a Sunday, he knew that this revelation was the completion of the time of Jesus from birth to the marrying of the bride which is us.

Editor’s Note
Was Jesus Secretly Married?
I have to touch on this if only briefly. There seems to be a growing fascination concerning the relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene due to the biblical implications of their close relationship. The people that are propagating this kind of thing are missing the entire point of Jesus’ life all together.

Jesus didn’t come here to find a woman to complete a union with. His union was with his Father. To say he was secretly married is just nonsense because Jesus taught that all things done in secret would be shouted from the house tops. Now, if he’s teaching one thing, why then would he do completely the opposite? There are many other reasons why I don’t agree with this but bottom line, be careful, it’s a distraction, like everything else the enemy throws at the church, to keep us off balance so the true power becomes obsolete. Did Jesus marry anyone? Absolutely.

Ephesians 5
25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Does not Scripture make it clear who the bride of Christ is? It should be as clear as the air we breathe. I am the bride, I am his wife, I am married to him and he is married to me. Those I reproduce, should be bearing his image, not my own.

Revelation 21
9And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. 10And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God
End of Note

The day is a person
Jesus said I am the first and the last, the beginning and the end. He is the Sabbath, He is the Lord of the Sabbath. It’s not a day I’m waiting for, it’s him and the revelation of him. I hope there’s something in here that triggered something in you to be free from the man-taught boundaries of your understanding. “Well, that’s not what I’ve been taught.” I understand that, it’s not what I was taught either. But could it be, by some sheer uncanny possibility, that you may have been taught wrong?

It would shock you if you knew how many people around us are taught, and have been taught all their lives, by gifted, well-intended ministers of the Gospel, that speaking in tongues was of the Devil. Yet we here clearly see that as a trick of the devil to deceive the flock. Right? We know full well that not only is it not of the Devil, but it’s a gift given to the church by God himself. Jesus said that he “had” to go so that the “Father” could send the Holy Spirit.

To be honest, it baffles me how they can read these passages of Scripture and still boldly preach the opposite. I know, their explanation was that even though they did talk in another language in the New Testament, it was just for then, a boost of heaven for the birthing of the church. But now we have the Bible in print, so we don’t “need” the gifts.

Again, I’m not sure how they explain it, it’s just a can of worms that go out of control once you open it, but didn’t Jesus also say that when the Holy Spirit is sent to us, “he” will show us all things? “He” will reveal the truths of the Word to us? “He” will pray on our behalf when we don’t know how to pray in some situations?

The point is, we’re quick to point out where we see other people being taught the wrong thing, but it’s not as easy to swallow when it’s sitting in front of us and we’re being asked to reevaluate our own doctrines. But I believe that’s just what we need to do when it comes to dealing with end-time theologies. And if it’s true that we were wrong there, and I strongly believe we were, then we also need to be open in other areas of our doctrines as well.

You’ve Been HAD!
Hear the voice of this preacher, you’ll never get away with this message God has spoken to you now. This isn’t by accident, nor is it by chance. There comes a time in every one of our lives where God calls us to go deeper, take a step off the ledge of our own understanding and depend completely on the leading of the spirit and for you, that time is now. This will mess you up, but like God’s judgment, that’s a good thing.

The words of a dying church can be found in the 5th and 6th chapters of Matthew when the Pharisees, the men who’d been given the responsibility to be the custodians of the truths of God. These were righteous men, we see them as hypocrites, but they were men that were devoted to the accuracy and teaching the Word of God. But when Jesus, who “is” the Word of God, stands up and starts teaching the true word of God, their response was not “Wow, that’s good, I love that, I want more!” No, their response was “we’ve never heard that before.”

Behold I stand at the Door and Knock . . .
How many times have we said that when we’ve found ourselves at the threshold of something that God was trying to get us into a new dimension of understanding. Somebody asked me the other day “What was it that triggered this in you 10 years ago that caused you to begin to consider these things.” The reason why these doors of understanding were open to me, is because I’ve always been open. The reason why so many live in fear and bondage is because they have to hold on to everything they believe and have been taught and they think they are free because God delivered them from drugs, sex, or what have you. But all that happened really was they traded a carnal bondage for a spiritual one, a religious one. Satan still has them, he just changed his grip.

Changing Law Started with Christ

It holds the church static with the last thing that God did. Jesus said it over and over “You have heard it said . . . but I say . . .” Just because you’ve heard it said, doesn’t make it truth. One of the hardest things for the body of Christ to do is understand that it must have an ability to grow in doctrine and understanding. We want to lay out a law and once we do, it’s considered a false doctrine if there’s any changes attempted to be made to it. Try taking a mature adult and get them to fit into the body of a child, it’s obviously impossible. In fact, look at society now, it’s become a natural thing for men and women both to do everything in their power to stay a certain age. From diets to a surgeon’s knife, we’ll do anything to keep the inevitable from happening.

Looking to the Wrong Surgeon For Answers
It’s the same thing in the church. We do everything in our power to keep what we think is the “continuity” by not allowing change. There is a difference between jumping from one doctrine to another from one day to the next, and maturing in your relationship with God. Change is inevitable if we want to reach spiritual maturity. But we also want to keep the dividing lines between our denominational brother’s and sisters so that we can maintain order when it’s actually the diversities of our personalities that create the body in the first place.

In truth, I’m Presbyterian, I believe in the sovereignty of God. I’m Baptist, I believe in eternal security. “I certainly don’t believe in eternal insecurity”. That’s what most Pentecostals have been taught, Just as Baptist claim that speaking in tongues is of the devil and we smirk at that kind of rhetoric, yet we Pentecostals believe that eternal insecurity is of the devil. We’re no different! (Personal note) For those of you about to walk out on this whole thing because of that one statement, I challenge you to keep your own door open and let God do his work. I will however, follow this up by simply saying, eternal security goes hand in hand with being a bond-servant. You can’t be one without the other being in effect. (end note)

Faith enforced by Fear
We’re taught on hell and the Rapture all the time in order to keep you in the kingdom of God. I’m in the kingdom of God, I appreciate my Mom and Dad, they’ve been great pioneers in the Pentecostal movement. But I’m not in the kingdom of God now because I am kept in it by fear. There was a time in my life that I stayed in church because I was afraid of going to hell or missing the Rapture.

“Let your giving not be of grudgingly or of necessity in the 3rd dimension, it’s not just about giving money right? Hopefully we all can see that it’s not just about serving God based on a grudge or necessity which is of the mindset “I better serve him or he’s going to knock me dead and I’m going to die a terrible death and go to hell or miss the Rapture. No, I’d rather go beyond that and mature and serve him because I love him, a bondservant, not just a servant. Remember when we covered that?

Spiritual Spousal Abuse

I’m not afraid of going to hell. I think that’s the reason why our kids are lost a lot of times is because we motivate them to stay in the kingdom of God based on fear tactics. “You just don’t know honey, you might step out in the street and get killed in a car wreck tomorrow, you want to be sent to hell?” Jesus didn’t motivate people to come to the kingdom of God by using fear. That’s religion. God doesn’t use fear, he uses love. Why would I want to serve somebody just because if I don’t he’s going to smash my brains out, that’s not love at all. If I only stayed with my wife because I was afraid if I didn’t I’d wake up in the middle of the night and find her sitting over me with a butcher knife in her hand, is that love?

In fact, we encourage spouses to run away from that type of relationship don’t we? We call it spousal abuse. So why would we expect God to use those same tactics? “Walk away from God, just see if he doesn’t bring hell on you!” “Don’t you know when you have Jesus in your heart, you will never experience pain and sorrow again???” As I’m sure we’re all aware, that’s a bunch of hooey! Jesus said himself that you will, not maybe or if, but you will have trials and tribulations, he wasn’t talking to the ungodly, it was to those he cherished the most. God’s protection over you is not from being uncomfortable, his protection is from the evil one destroying you.

You have heard it said, but I say . . .

Revelation 16
10And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain

You understand what this darkness is? Some people think darkness is referring to here in Revelation has to do with God blocking the light of the sun and there are applications of that. But darkness also, as it’s spoken of in Ephesians has to do with mental darkness. Haven’t you heard the phrase coined “shed some light on the subject?” he came out of the kingdom of darkness into the marvelous light. You came into a whole new world, you were blind but now you can see. There’s nothing wrong with your eyes, there’s just something wrong with your mind. Because you see what you’re looking for. This is the greatest reason why Mary as well as other disciples, didn’t recognize Jesus after his resurrection. They weren’t looking for a living Lord, they were too busy mourning their dead one.

But Jesus said the greatest darkness in all the world is when the light that is in you becomes darkness. He meant the greatest darkness is when what I have believed has brought illumination to me, becomes the only thing that I can see and that in and of itself is the greatest darkness. That’s the reason why he said of the Pharisees, who were the men who carried the word of God, he said they were the blind leading the blind and they both end up in a ditch. What’s a ditch?

It’s usually on either side of the road, it’s one extreme or the other. How many times have I said, God is a god of balance. Keep the perspective of what we’re studying. It’s not about whether what I believe is right and what you believe is wrong, but it’s about whether I have the ability to change into the likeness of Christ as the process of maturity manifests itself in my life.

Back to top  Message [Page 1 of 1]

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum