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A Faith Failure

An article on faith published on this website recently explained was faith is. This article addresses what happens when that faith fails; a faith failure.

The Importance of Faith

Faith is the engine that drives Christianity from the beginning to the end. It is by faith that we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior and the gift of salvation. However, it is not only at the beginning of our walk with Christ that faith is engaged but is required perpetually and growing stronger as time passes (2 Peter 1:5-9).

How important is faith? Let’s look at what the Scriptures state about faith.

Hab. 2:4

4 “See, he is puffed up; his desires are not upright — but the righteous will live by his faith NIV

This verse contrasts the proud with the righteous. The proud trust in themselves and their lives are unrighteous. But the righteous ones live by their faith—faith in the Lord.

Heb 11:6

6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. NIV

This Scripture makes it crystal clear that God requires faith. By faith, we must believe that he exists, and He rewards those who sincerely seek Him. Otherwise, He is not pleased.

Heb 10:38

38 But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.” NIV

This is more evidence of God’s displeasure for ones who allow their faith to wane. The righteous are to live by faith.

Therefore, we can see how important faith is in order to have a relationship with the Lord.

So what happens when faith fails?

A Faith Failure

One has to look no further than the Scriptures to find the consequences of a faith failure.

Let’s look at one clear example in Matt 14:22-34

22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone,

24 but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.

25 During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on A Faith Failurethe lake. 26 When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.

27 But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”

28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”

29 “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”

31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little A Faith Failurefaith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

32 And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33 Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” NIV

Verses 22 & 23 – After feeding the multitude of five-thousand, the people sought to make Jesus, king by force. Rather than wait for the crowd to become unruly, Jesus immediately put the disciples in a boat and sent them to the other side. He then went to the mountainside to pray until evening. By then, He was alone.

Verse 24 – The disciples followed Jesus’ instructions, got into the boat, and headed for the other side. But notice after they were in the midst of the sea, they encountered a trial despite following the Lord’s will. The sea and the winds were against them, and they were tossed to and fro.

Take note of who was in this boat. It was Christ’s disciples. Those of us who have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Saviour are His disciples as well and must enter the boat of Jesus’s will.

There are countless winds (trials) in this world that are contrary to doing the will of God. When anyone sets out to do the will of God, it won’t be long before they are experiencing the trials of “contrary” (KJV) circumstances that will deter and defy one’s obedience to the Lord. The devil will see to that; it’s his JOB.

But notice that the disciples didn’t give up. They continued to struggle to get to the other side. They were determined to carry out the will of the Lord. Even when faced with the most daunting circumstances, a disciple of Christ must press on.

Look at what Jesus says in Rev 2:10

10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. KJV

There is a serious reward waiting for us if we persevere.

Verse 25 – In the fourth watch of the night (between 3:00 & 6:00 AM), Jesus went out to them, walking on the sea. Here we have a display of the power of Jesus. Imagine a man walking on water, a raging sea no less.

What is also on display here is that Jesus is available to meet our needs in times of trouble, no matter how desperate they may be, no matter how tossed and fro the situation may knock us, He’s available.

Verse 26 – In this verse, we see that Jesus showed up, but they were troubled. Sometimes our problems can be so dire that when Jesus shows up, A Faith Failurewe don’t believe it is Him coming to our rescue. He can show up in the most incredible ways and do the most incredible things!

Verse 27 – Here, we have Jesus’ comfort. Jesus comforts His disciples in many ways. If not audibly, in His Word. We must seek all
avenues to enjoy His comfort. Instead of looking to the world for comfort, we must look to the Word.

In John 14:27, He said to His disciples:

27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

Verse 28 – Peter is often criticized for being impulsive by requesting Jesus to call for him on the water. He is also accused of being a show-off before the other disciples, being irrational, and making a superfluous request.

But on the contrary, Peter was exercising extraordinary faith. He had faith that Jesus could fulfill his request…if it was really Him. He only was seeking to know if the voice he heard out in the dark sea on that stormy night was really that of Jesus. Remember what he said, “Lord, if it is you.”

This appeal was unlike the ones made by the Christ deniers who demanded Christ pass their tests to prove His claims, although He had already given more than ample proof of His claims. Peter undoubtedly believed in Christ (Matt.16 13-16). He didn’t seek a sign to prove that Christ was what He claimed to be. He passed the test of Hebrews 11:6; he believed that Jesus was Jesus, the Son of God, and only sought a sign to confirm that the voice in the darkness was indeed Christ Himself. His request actually honored Christ by the very greatness of it. Because it revealed how much Peter truly believed Christ could do great things.

We, too, must honor God by requesting great things by faith! But note: Peter’s request was out of love for Christ, not to satisfy some whim or fancy of a fleshly, material desire. He loved Jesus and wanted to be with him at any cost—even if he had to walk on water to do it!

Verse 29 – When Jesus said, “come,” which was all Peter needed to hear. His faith was so strong and extraordinary that he stepped on the water and walked toward Jesus in that very faith. What faith!

Those that criticize Peter’s request fail to realize that Jesus validated it by inviting him to come onto the water.

Notice Peter’s immediate obedience. Obedience was critical to his accomplishing the impossible. Not only that, but prompt obedience was also a requirement. A delay in obedience would have cost Peter an opportunity to do the impossible. If he had procrastinated, the possibility to walk on water would have passed. However, he did not hesitate. As soon as the command was issued, he immediately got out of the boat and walked on water.

God does not rally around the disobedient to do the impossible. When we fail to act, He moves on. Therefore, we not only need to obey, but we must also obey swiftly if we are to ensure God’s help.

Peter was not disobedient but immediate. Peter’s attitude was; you folks can stay in this sinking boat if you want to; I am going to my Jesus!

So Peter walked on the water toward Jesus! This is the power of faith!

Let’s face it. Walking on water is no easy feat; it is against physics and nature, but remember what Jesus said in Matt 19:26, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” NIV

Verse 30Unfortunately, Peter got distracted. Instead of keeping his focus on Jesus, he looked at the circumstance he found himself. As a result, he began to sink. Peter began to sink because he placed his eyes on the circumstances instead of Christ, and he let fear control his actions instead of faith.

Many of us are guilty of this very scenario. We seek Christ, and we walk with Him, but somewhere along the line, we take our focus off him and on the circumstance. We sometimes get impatient in our waiting for Christ to act and act on our own. These things are the result of our waning faith.

A Faith Failure
Prov 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. NIV

 

Circumstances seldom give confidence for us to do much for God. More often than not, circumstances oppose us from even thinking about accomplishing great things for God or even about living a Christian life. If we focus on circumstances rather than on the commands of the Lord, we will be in big trouble every time.

The Scriptures inform us in 2 Cor 5:7, (“For we walk by faith, not by sight”:). No matter what it looks like through our eyes, we are to persevere by faith.

But it is not an easy task to keep our circumstances from mastering our thinking. They frequently seem so genuine, while the power and commands of Christ seem so elusive and distant.

However, triumph arrives when we focus upon Christ when we consider His commands and His power. But once we take our focus off of Him and remove Him from our vision, we are doomed for failure in life. We will have an unfavorable walk if we allow our circumstances to influence our walk more than Christ does.

Back to Peter, all was not lost. Although Peter began to sink, his faith in Jesus was still strong enough to cry out to Him for help.

We know when we are sinking, and we know when we are off course. The lesson here is, when we begin to sink, when we get off course, the action to take, the thing to do, is to call out to Jesus.

Verse 31
– Notice how close to Jesus Peter was. He was close enough that Jesus could reach out and catch him. Imagine if he had not sought Jesus’ help. As close as he was, he would have sunk.

Sometimes we are so close to Jesus and so close to doing something mighty and receiving a mighty blessing from Him, but we allow a circumstance to sink us. We must remember, “he is a rewarder of them that earnestly seek him.”

But the Lord is merciful and full of grace (Ps. 103:8), and He immediately reached out His hand and caught Peter.

This Scripture sheds light on the fact that Jesus is always standing by to help us; we only need to call out to Him for His help.

After Jesus rescued Peter was from sinking in the sea, He rebuked him by saying, “You of little faith,” … ” why did you doubt?” NIV The problem was not that Peter had no faith, but that he had little faith. He could not have walked as far as he did if he had no faith. Walking on water as far as he did was an accomplishment, yet, Jesus called it “little faith.”

Some of us may feel that we have great faith, doing great things…until that faith is tested. When sifted through the eyes of Christ, it may very well be “little faith.”

Jesus asked, “Why did you doubt?”
Peter’s doubt, which resulted from his little faith, was unjustifiable. The question let Peter know that he had no reason to doubt. Rather, he had a host of reasons to trust Christ after personally witnessing all the works He had performed.

Peter had no excuse, but we don’t have one either. We also have enormous spiritual benefits that should result in our having much greater faith than we do. We have the Scriptures instantly at hand from which we can read of many great accomplishments of faith. We also have many other books available that give the testimony of some of the saints over the years that have attempted and accomplished great things by faith. Nevertheless, despite these great encouragements, our doubts are unjustifiably large, and our faith is unjustifiably small.

Moreover, undeniably, our faith can be little. For Jesus said if our faith were only the size of a grain of mustard seed, we could move mountains (Matthew 17:20). The grain of mustard seed is tiny; however, to see the faith most of us have, one would probably have to use a magnifying glass.

The fact is none of us has any excuse for such tiny faith. Christ’s rebuke was undoubtedly very humbling to Peter, but it should be even more humbling to us. Yet, let this humbling rebuke inspire us to get busy developing our faith so that we can glorify God more by our performance.

Amen

Questions, comments, concerns, or faith experiences are welcomed below.

Blessings!

 

 

 

 

The History of the Holy Roman Empire

A recent article on this website, What is the Antichrist, explained that the Antichrist is a false religious system formed by an alliance between church and state In Rome. However, its origin began long before this alliance. This article looks at the very beginning, the history of the Holy Roman Empire.

The History of the Holy Roman Empire

The history of the Holy Roman Empire goes all the way back to the days that began the post-flood era. Noah and his family, which consisted of his wife, three sons, and their wives, were the only survivors of the flood. His sons were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Ham had a son named Cush and Cush had a son named Nimrod (Gen. 10:6-8), which means rebellious and lawless in Hebrew. The passage goes on to state, regarding Nimrod, that “he began to be a mighty one in the earth.”

He built his kingdom in the land of Babylonia and built many cities, and one of the first of these cities was Babylon. Nimrod pledged to protect the people from treacherous wild animals. This protection came mainly in the form of walled cities, such as Babylon. It wasn’t long for Nimrod to establish total control over the people. Settled within his city and reliant on him for survival, the people in effect belonged to Nimrod.

As a consequence, Babylon, the capital of Mesopotamia and the seat of human civilization, proceeded to reflect Nimrod’s character and ambition—morally, politically, and religiously. As he grew his empire, he moved away from God and formed philosophies and religions with his immoral wife, Semiramis.

For a description of Nimrod’s character, the words “mighty one” in Genesis 10:8 is a translation from a Hebrew word that conveys a tyrant. Verse 9 records that he was “a mighty hunter before the Lord”; the Hebrew word translated “before” should more accurately be translated as against the Lord. Nimrod was an oppressor whose primary inspiration in his life was laboring against God. Nimrod built the city of Babylon and instituted the entire Babylonian kingdom that included most of the world’s population at the time as an act of rebellion against God.

Nimrod established himself as the supreme, flawless, religious authority, putting himself above God, and to his followers, Nimrod was God!

This sacrilege condition vindicates why Babylon is generally synonymous with rebellion and lawlessness in the Bible.

The History of the Holy Roman Empire - The Tower of Babel
The Tower of Babel

Genesis 11 addresses Nimrod’s construction of the city of Babylon, and his motive for building this city is significant. Verse 4 records that it was an endeavor to “make us a name” to gain prominence and notoriety. However, neither God nor His faithful servant Noah had authorized Babylon’s construction. Since the people constructed a tower, “whose top may reach unto heaven” indicates that the people recognized that they were rebelling against God. Nimrod and his defiant cohorts had mind of the flood, that it was punishment for humanity’s rebellion, and were building a gigantic tower in an attempt to escape another flood that may come resulting from their wickedness.

Thus, Babylon’s construction of the tower represented an attempt by Nimrod and his citizens to break away from God and to void the work God was executing through Noah.

Babylon was the center of operations of Nimrod’s campaign to oppose God. This location is where Nimrod, the great organized world apostasy from God, was initiated and controlled the world until today. Together with his wife, Semiramis (also his mother), Nimrod fashioned, then imposed on his followers, his particular finance, politics, and education system.

Furthermore, Nimrod acclaimed himself as the religious head of the people.

The History of the Holy Roman Empire - Nimrod
Nimrod the Great

He set himself up as the supreme spiritual power in place of God and Noah the servant of God. As the priest of Babylon and in union with Semiramis, Nimrod devised the Babylonian mystery religion, including many pagan religious doctrines and practices. Presently numerous patterns and symbols associated with Christmas and Easter, for example, can be traced back to ancient Babylon. (For proof, read Alexander Hislop’s book The Two Babylons, available online.) [paid link]

Nimrod was eventually killed while hunting. But the false and rebellious political and religious system he fashioned carried on without him. It thrived, actually, thanks to the work of Semiramis. With her husband/son dead, Semiramis persuaded her followers that Nimrod presently lived as an immortal spiritual being. Therefore, Nimrod, even in death, was worshiped as a god. He became celebrated as the messiah. The original mother and child duo, Semiramis and Nimrod, became the main objects of worship in ancient Babylon.

After Nimrod’s death, Semiramis declared him as the “sun god.” She continued in unbridled covetousness and depravity and raised Babylon, where she had reigned to a depraved distinction among the nations as the seat of idolatry and sacred prostitution.

She became an expectant mother, birthed a son, and declared that her late husband, now “the Sun,” fertilized her with the rays of the Sun, and her son, which she named Tammuz, was born on the Winter solstice. Tammuz was eventually worshiped as the reincarnation of the sun god “Nimrod,” his birthday became recognized until this day, on December 25th.

Does that date ring a bell? [It is an ambition to post an article on the Holidays we celebrate…stay tuned]

The immortal soul and mother-child worship doctrines can be traced directly back to Nimrod and Babylon, to name only two of Catholic principles.

When Nimrod died, his false system was profoundly rooted in humanity. It is not possible to overemphasize what Nimrod and Semiramis accomplished in Babylon.

It was from this seditious nation that all other civilizations transpired. Mesopotamia, the region that contains Babylon, is known as “the cradle of civilization.”

The Bible unequivocally records the baffling of the languages and the scattering of the diverse populous from the region of Babylon(Gen. 11:3-8).

This action occurred during the construction of the tower of Babel. God disapproved and confused their language so that they could not communicate with one another. As a consequence, they scattered all over the earth.

As the myriad of races and peoples disbanded, they carried the beliefs and practices of the Babylonian mystery religion with them, as many of which remained ingrained in them. The various races developed new religions, though often altered in the new form.

After they began building a tower to heaven, the tower of Babel, with the occurrence of this scattering, this Babylonian system of idolatrous worship spread worldwide as the inhabitants of the city itself were scattered (Genesis 11:9). As they went from Babylon, these men took their worship of mother and child and the various “mystery” symbols as well. It is noted that Babylon was the source from which all
idolatry emanated.

As time went on, the Roman Empire incorporated the gods and religions of the countries it ruled into its system. Since Babylon was the source of this paganism, it is understandable to see how Rome’s early religion was a form of Babylonian worship that had developed under different forms and names in the countries it had entered.

It was the Pagan Roman Emperor Constantine the Great who introduced Christianity to Rome. He converted to Christianity in AD 312. He was Rome’s first Christian emperor and initiated the empire to become a Christian state.

There is much debate over his conversion to Christianity as being sincere or merely a political maneuver. Nevertheless, in A.D. 313, Constantine and co-emperor Licinius, the eastern emperor, issued the Edict of Milan. The mandate granted “to the Christians and others full authority to observe that religion which each preferred.”This action put an end to the harsh persecution and initiated its spread throughout the Roman Empire.

In 330 A.D., Constantine moved his capital from Rome to Byzantium, which he renamed Constantinople, after himself, which is now modern-day Istanbul. This move consequently paved the way for the Roman Catholic Popes to be in power in Rome to succeed Constantine.

As the Papal (Catholic) Church increased in power, it was in disfavor of the practices of the Christians, particularly Saturday worship. Remember, Rome practiced the Babylonian doctrines and worship that including worshiping the Sun on Sunday. These practices were also part of Constantine’s Saturday vs. Sunday Worship - Sun Worshipbackground. Therefore, it became Constantine’s ambition to harmonize these differences to unify the empire. As a result, he imposed his own version of Christianity upon the empire and ordered Sunday worship. He presented the following proclamation in 321 AD: “Let all magistrates and people of the city… rest on the venerable day of the Sun”
(The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, “Roman Legislation for Sunday,” vol. XI, p. 147).

Later, the Roman church additionally passed a startling decree in the Council of Laodicea, declaring, “Christians shall not Judaize and be idle on Saturday, but shall work on that day; but the Lord’s Day they shall especially honour, and, as being Christians, shall, if possible, do no work on that day. If, however, they are found Judaizing [keeping the seventh-day Sabbath], they shall be shut out from Christ” (A History of the Councils of the Church, vol. 2, p. 316).
To put it bluntly, Christian Sabbath-keepers became affirmed as heretics.

This collaboration amid church and state produced what eventually became known as the Holy Roman Empire.

This empire developed into a multi-ethnic composite of territories in Western, Central, and Southern Europe that formed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars.

A relic of the Holy Roman Empire is the Roman Catholic Church that continues with Babylonian practices to this day.

Amen

Any questions, comments, and concerns are more than welcome below.

Blessings!

 

 

 

Does God Really Exist?

God is invisible, and because of this, many deny Him. However, even though He is invisible, His existence is obvious. This article answers the question, does God really exist?

Does God Really Exist?

To get a clear answer, all we need to do is consult the Scriptures.

Rom 1:18-23

18 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world, His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools,” NASU

This passage has a paradox: God is invisible, yet He is “clearly seen.” The creation reveals God’s existence. Verses 19 and 20 contain four attributes of the truth of God’s existence as shown in nature: (1) It is plain and “clearly seen”: it is visible. (2) It is “understood“ any intelligent individual who observes the truth will additionally ponder on it and arrive at a conclusion about it. (3) It has been “since the creation of the world.” it is constantly continuing, changeless. (4) It unveils God’s eternal power and divine nature.

We may not be able to see God, but we can certainly see the evidence of His existence through the creation. All we need to do is take a look about us. We only need to look at creation in all its splendor to observe that a mighty power made this world. Nevertheless, not just an abstract, impersonal force; instead, a personal God. Therefore, creation demonstrates both God’s eternal power as well as his divine nature. Indeed, nature reveals a God of intelligence, intricate detail, order, beauty, might, and power, a God who has command over powerful forces. Creation reveals God’s qualities.

However, even those who observe and enjoy creation still fail to acknowledge God.

For the reason that God has made specific facts about Him evident to us, those individuals will someday have to justify before God as to why they chose to ignore his existence and character.

But Some ask, how could a loving God send anyone to hell, in particular someone who has never heard the Good News of Jesus? However, Paul says in this passage that God has revealed himself plainly to all people in the creation. Additionally, every individual has an inner sense of what God requires, but some choose not to live up to it. In other words, an individual’s moral standards are continuously better than their behavior. If people restrain God’s truth to live in their sinful ways, they have no excuse. Therefore, because they really know the truth, they will have to bear the penalty for ignoring it.

This passage in verse 20 mentions God’s “invisible attributes.” So, what are the invisible attributes of God?

The Invisible Attributes of GodDoes God Really Exist? - The Attributes of God

God is an uncreated being: Gen 1:1

1 “In the beginning God created the Heaven and the earth.”

God created the heaven and the earth. That means God existed before heaven and earth. He has no beginning and no end. He has always been and will always be; He is Alpha and Omega.

Ps 90:2 reads:

2 “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.”

There has never been a time when God was not, nor will there ever be a time when God will not be: “from everlasting to everlasting.” For that reason, it is our advantage to establish a good relationship with God instead of ignoring Him.

God is omnipresent

God is everywhere present. Ps 139:7-10

7 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

9 If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;

10 Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

There is no getting away from God!

God is omnipotent—all-powerful.

Matt 19:26

26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

  •  God can do anything and everything
  •  God has all power, but He cannot do anything inconsistent with who He is. He cannot lie and cannot be tempted with evil (Titus 1:2). He is the ultimate of absolute goodness, perfection, and truth.

God is omniscient—all-knowing

  • He knows all things and about all things
  • Deut 29:29-30:1 29 “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law.”
    NASU
  • There are some things that God is not going to share with us. Because we are finite beings, we cannot comprehend all that He is doing because we do not have the ability to do so.

God is holy—separated from all sin

Ps 89:15-18

15 “Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of your presence, O Lord. 16 They rejoice in your name all day long; they exult in your righteousness.

17 For you are their glory and strength, and by your favor you exalt our horn. 18 Indeed, our shield belongs to the Lord, our king to the Holy One of Israel.” NIV

  •  He is the holy one of Israel
  • God’s holiness provides the pattern for us to imitate.

God is righteous—He always acts in harmony with what is right

Dan 9:14

“…for the Lord our God is righteous in everything he does…” NIV

  • He is the final standard of what is right
  • He sent us the Holy Spirit to enable us to live righteously
  • We are to do what is right in the Spirit of the living God.

God is a God of wrath—He hates everything that is opposed to His moral character.

Rom 1:18

18 “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness,” NIV

  • He hates anything that brings us as his children to nothing, anything sinful in a person’s life.
  • God intensely hates sin because it destroys the people He loves. God loves the sinner but hates sin.
  • John 3:36- “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” NSAU The wrath of God will not fall upon a child of God. However, the wrath of God is limited to those who are unbelievers and defy Him.

God is judge—He is our judge 2 Cor. 5:10

10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. NSAU

  • This judgment is concerning all Christians, not the ungodly.
  • This judgment seat of Christ is a judgment of rewards 1 Cor. 3:10-15

10 According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. 11 For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. 14 If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. NSAU

  • All of us Christians are going to be judged by the way that we live our lives. God knows everything about us that needs to be known. He will judge us by the truth that we know, the opportunities we had, and what we did with them.

God requires our worship—Col 3:16

16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. NASU

The Word of God
                                                                   The Word of Christ!

This Scripture describes worship.

The “Word of Christ” in the Scripture refers to the message pronounced by Christ, which is the gospel. This is undoubtedly the Bible. This teaching should be inherent in each believer by their study and knowledge of God’s Word. The gospel should also reside in the church, which must be the center for wise teaching of the gospel message as well as encouragement, wise advice, or reprimand. In our efforts to access individuals with felt needs, we must retain the Bible at the core of our church ministries. (2 Tim 3:16-4:2) “Teaching and admonishing” refers to the entire congregation and the duty to teach the Word, including the ministry, life, and teachings of Jesus Christ, as a means to warn and correct one another.

The psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs mentioned were an essential part of this teaching and reproach. Stories and teachings about Christ were occasionally set to music to causing them to be easier to memorize and pass on to one another. When grounded in God’s Word and correct doctrine, music can also be crucial for Christian worship and education.

This is the worship God requires.

Yes, God really does exist!

Amen!

Questions, comments, and concerns are welcomed below.

Blessings

 

 

 

Living Godly in an Ungodly World

Today we live in a society that is becoming more and more secular, resulting in increasing ungodliness. The influence of this ungodliness makes living a godly life challenging. So how does a godly individual overcome this challenge? This article addresses living godly in an ungodly world.

The Ungodly World

We live in a corrupt world that opposes God’s values. We live in a society that is drifting, not drifting toward God, but away from God. Generation after generation has drifted away from the principles of God’s Word. This drift includes the customs and ideas that were based on Biblical principles. So, what is the answer to this drift? What is the answer to living godly in an ungodly world?

As usual, the answer is in the Scriptures. It is the Scriptures that tell us how we can live godly in an ungodly age.

In the book of Titus, Paul writes to Titus, a young pastor, giving him direction in pasturing a challenging church. It is challenging because of the society in which this church is located in Crete.

Titus 1:5-16

5” For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you —  6 if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination. 7 For a bishop must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, 8 but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled, 9 holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.”

10 “For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, 11 whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 One of them, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” 13 This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, 14 not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth. 15 To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled. 16 They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.” NKJV

Paul lays out the qualifications of an elder. However, Christians, in general, must possess these qualities.

This description of Crete in verses 10-16 applies to Crete and applies to the US and the world these days. We are living in the degeneration of society. There is more opposition and unbelief than ever before.

These are the words that fit our society:

Secular — There is no place for God in many lives today. The whole idea of secularism is to get rid of God and all spiritual things: “so I can believe what I want to believe,” “have whatever I want.” “Do whatever I want to do.” We are clinging to this thought pattern even if it kills us as well as others (e.g., refusing covid19 vaccines).

Materialism – Money is what drives the majority of individuals today. This desire for money and pleasure often leads to greed. When we drift away from God, a void forms, and we attempt to fill this void with material goods: money, things, and relationships. Etc.

Immorality – Today’s society is inundated with sex. Instead of sex being motivated by love as God intended, it is motivated by lust. Sex is another way we attempt to fill the aforementioned void, seeking sex purely for fleshly fulfillment. When we drift from God, the thinking is convoluted. The result is a society that is degenerating through and through; full of empty philosophy that yields no satisfaction or peace.

When we remove the one true element that can fill the void and bring us peace and satisfaction, it becomes filled with all kinds of false, empty, and vain philosophies, causing the most peculiar things to become popular. These philosophies are on the scene because of the deception that has crept in as we drift from God.

This situation was foretold in Scripture: 2 Tim 4:3-4

3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. NKJV

This time has arrived. We seek doctrine that tells us what we desire to hear instead of the truth (false doctrine).

It is more important now than ever for professing Christians to live the life God desires for us to strengthen the church and shine a light on the darkness that is prevailing in the world.

Living Godly in an Ungodly World

We have established the ungodly condition of the world and the need for us to live godly lives despite it. But how do we cope with such a feat? How do we live godly in a world that is steadily drifting further and further from God and His principles? What is the answer to living godly in a godless age?

Let’s look at verse 9 again.

9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.

We have to do what Paul urged and encouraged the elders of Crete to do;

Living Godly in an Ungodly World
We must hold fast to God’s Word!

hold fast to the Word of God. We are to grip the Word tight, hold it close, apply it to our lives, and not allow it to drift away. The key to living a godly life is within the pages of the Scriptures.

We must get the Word in our minds and hearts and not read it only. The scripture in James 1:22-25 reads:

22 “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it — he will be blessed in what he does.” NIV

We must hold fast or cling to the Word so that we will not drift from it and become like the world. So, why the Bible (the Word)?

The Holy Bible
The Inspired Word of God
  1. It is the mind of God – It is the eternal Word of God Isa 40:8 reads, The grass withers, the flower fades,But the word of our God stands forever.” NASB The Bible is the story of God’s redeeming love for mankind from the creation to the last verse.
  2. It is God’s textbook and guidebook for the salvation of humanity. It was given to us to understand salvation, live a godly life and be saved, and be equipped to defend what we believe.
  3. It gives us wisdom.
  4. It lifts our burdens.
  5. It brings us joy and peace.

Phil 4:7

7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. KJV

John 14:27

27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. NIV

6. It keeps us from sin – When we read it and practice what it says, it continually cleanses us. It cleanses us from wrong thinking, lust, anger, bitterness, resentment, hostility, and unbelief. Because we are constantly reminded that these things do not belong in our lives. These emotions are not a part of a Christian’s life.

7 It refutes false doctrine – In recent times, there has been an onslaught of false doctrines promoting all kinds of behaviors contrary to the will of God.

How do we cling to the Word?

  •  We must believe it – we must have faith and believe it to be the truth
  •  We have to read it carefully, meditate on it daily (give a passage thought).
  •  We must be willing to apply it – If we do not apply it to our lives and practice it, it cannot work, no matter how much we read it.

The Bible is our textbook, our handbook that can guide us through the treacherous waters of life. It is the best tool in our arsenal to aid us in living godly in an ungodly world.

Amen

Questions, comments, concerns, and any experience you would like to share can be left below.

For more articles, visit www.TheChristianAdvocate.org

Blessings!!

 

 

 

The Rise and fall of America

America’s rise was prophesied in the Scriptures long before its occurrence, and so is its fall. This article will cover the prophecies of the rise and fall of America.

In the article, What is Happening to America Today, the sins that are actually causing America’s demise are addressed. This article addresses the foretelling of the demise in Biblical Prophesy.

What is Prophesy?

Prophesy is forecasts about the future and the end-time; distinctive communications from God, often expressed through human elements, indicating the divine will for mankind on earth and in heaven.

A prophecy was technically the task of the prophet. However, all truth or revelation is prophetic if it points to some future person, event, or thing, and God Himself can deliver it.

 The Rise and fall of America

The conception of this rise takes place in the first book of the Bible, Genesis, regarding the Promise to Abram by God. Each succeeding generation, God pronounced prophetic promises and blessings to his descendants.

Let’s look at what God said to Abram in Gen 17:5-7

5 “Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee.”

6 “And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee.”

7 “And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee.”

Notice that God said Abraham would be the father of many nations.” This prophecy includes not only the Middle Eastern Jewish nations, as the belief of many.

He made the same promise to Abram’s wife Sarai when He changed her name to Sarah in Genesis 17:15-16.

God additionally promised that their descendants would possess the gates of their enemies. H made this promise to Abraham’s daughter-in-law. Gen 24:60

60 And they blessed Rebekah and said to her:

“Our sister, may you become

The mother of thousands of ten thousands;

And may your descendants possess

The gates of those who hate them.” NKJV

During Biblical times, controlling the gates symbolized controlling the city. However, in the latter-day fulfillment, the one who controls the strategic geographical chokepoints controls nations. Consider who at one time controlled Suez, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, the Khyber Pass, Singapore, the English Channel, and others. Who controlled the narrow passage between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden? IT IS KNOWN AS THE BOB ELM AND A.B. ARABIC FOR THE GATE OF MONDEB OR THE GATE OF TEARS.

Let’s look at the genealogy:

Abraham—Isaac—Jacob (his name was changed to Israel)—The Rise and Fall of America - Abraham's Lineage

Jacob (Israel) had twelve sons:

  1. Ruben
  2. Simeon
  3. Levi
  4. Judah
  5. Dan
  6. Naphtali
  7. Gad
  8. Asher
  9. Issachar
  10. Zebulon
  11. Joseph
  12. Benjamin

Each of these sons became the father of a tribe of people. The son named Judah was the father of the Jews. However, the word Jews used in the King James Version of the Scriptures for the first time is when the Jews were at war with Israel,

2 Kings 16:5-6.

5 “Then Rezin king of Syria and Pekah son of Remaliah king of Israel came up to Jerusalem to war: and they besieged Ahaz, but could not overcome him.”

6 “At that time Rezin king of Syria recovered Elath to Syria, and drave the Jews from Elath: and the Syrians came to Elath, and dwelt there unto this day.”

Judah is only one of the twelve sons of Israel, and the Jews make up only one of the twelve tribes of Israel. The Jews are still around, but where are the others?

When the twelve tribes of Israel came out of Egyptian bondage, they settled in the area we know today as Israel. Over time, they grew into a regional power under King David and his son Solomon. However, shortly after the death of Solomon, what was once one nation became two nations; the house of Judah that consisted of the Jews along with the tribe of Benjamin was one, and the house of Israel with the remaining ten tribes.

Both nations rejected God and were eventually overthrown and taken captive. The first to go into captivity was the ten-tribe House of Israel, approximately 721-718 BC. The Assyrian Empire removed them from northern Israel. They took them northeast to the other side of the Euphrates River, where the historian Josephus indicates a vast number of them were there 800 years later.

Alternatively, the House of Judah went into captivity to the Chaldeans or Babylonians over 120 years later and driven to an area far south of their northern brethren.

Because the Jews continued to keep the seventh-day Sabbath, Saturday, they have kept their identity to this day, but the other tribes making up the house of Israel cast off this identifying sign and appear to be lost for the past 1900 years. But are they?

There is a wealth of historical evidence linking the ancient house of Israel to modern nations in northern Europe, especially to the British Isles. What we know is that these people are significant in number and have to be present somewhere today.

It is in the Scriptures that we find the keys to open our understanding. We must realize that not all the prophetic promises made to Abraham’s descendants, as most people believe, apply exclusively to the Jews. This fact is evident in 1 Chron. 5:2:

2 “For Judah prevailed above his brethren, and of him came the chief ruler; but the birthright was Joseph’s :)”

The most significant blessings passed to Israel’s sons were divided in two. From Judah would come a kingly line that would include the Messiah, Jesus. However, the birthright blessings of great national wealth would come through his brother, Joseph.

Christians, for the most, are familiar with the kingly line and understand that Jesus was, without a doubt, the pinnacle of the promises made to Judah as Jesus was of that tribe. However, few appear to be aware of the other part of the prophecy: the birthright.

Understanding the birthright promise is key to unlocking the understanding of major geopolitical events of the last three centuries. More importantly, what is happening currently and what will happen soon in the near future.

The birthright promises explain how a relatively small island nation could control ¼ of the earth. However, the birthright promises were divided by two also. This fact is evident in Gen 35:11:

11 “Also God said to him: “I am God Almighty. Be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall proceed from you, and kings shall come from your body.” NKJV

Notice the middle of this verse: “a nation and a company of nations shall proceed from you.”

Another Scripture that sheds light on the fact that this inheritance would spread far beyond Cannon is Gen 28:14

14 “Also your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south; and in you and in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” NKJV

After reuniting with Joseph after a long separation, Israel met Joseph’s sons, his grandsons, Manasseh, the oldest, and Ephraim, the youngest. Let’s look at what happened. Gen 48:8-20

8 “Then Israel saw Joseph’s sons, and said, “Who are these?”

9 “Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me in this place.”

And he said, “Please bring them to me, and I will bless them.” 10 Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see. Then Joseph brought them near him, and he kissed them and embraced them.” 11 And Israel said to Joseph, “I had not thought to see your face; but in fact, God has also shown me your offspring!”

12 “So Joseph brought them from beside his knees, and he bowed down with his face to the earth. 13 And Joseph took them both, Ephraim with his right hand toward Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh with his left hand toward Israel’s right hand, and brought them near him. 14 “Then Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on Ephraim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, guiding his hands knowingly, for Manasseh was the firstborn.”

15 “And he blessed Joseph, and said: “God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, The God who has fed me all my life long to this day, 16 “The Angel who has redeemed me from all evil, Bless the lads; Let my name be named upon them,And the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac;And let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.”

The name of Israel was to be placed on Joseph’s two sons.

When Joseph observed that his father’s hands were crossed and the greater blessing was being bestowed upon Ephraim, the youngest, he tried to intervene.

17 “Now when Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him; so he took hold of his father’s hand to remove it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18 And Joseph said to his father, “Not so, my father, for this one is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head.”

19 “But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great; but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his descendants shall become a multitude of nations.”

20 “So he blessed them that day, saying, “By you Israel will bless, saying, ‘May God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh!'” And thus, he set Ephraim before Manasseh.” NKJV

Manasseh would have become a single great nation, but Ephraim would become a company of nations.

Prior to his death, Jacob (Israel) called his twelve sons together. Gen 49:1 tells us the reason for this gathering:

“ And Jacob called his sons and said, “Gather together, that I may tell you what shall befall you in the last days”: NKJV

Next, we see what would become of each tribe in the last days. But how are we to know when these last days will arrive? Jesus speaks of the last days in this way: Matt 24:21-22

 21 “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22 “And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened.” NKJV

Daniel refers to this time in this fashion: Dan 12:1-4

12 “…And there shall be a time of trouble,

Such as never was since there was a nation,

Even to that time…many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.” NKJV

So we see that both Jesus and Daniel spoke of the most significant time of trouble in history. Jesus predicted human devised annihilation would be possible, and Daniel describes it as a time marked by an explosion of knowledge and transportation. This description could only refer to relatively modern times. So what we see in these prophesies is what we should expect of Joseph’s current descendants.

We see this in Gen 49:22-24

22 “Joseph is a fruitful bough,

A fruitful bough by a well;

His branches run over the wall. “

23 “The archers have bitterly grieved him, Shot at him and hated him.”

24 “But his bow remained in strength, And the arms of his hands were made strong By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob

From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel),” NKJV

Joseph was to spread abroad like branches running over a wall that could not contain them. He would have many enemies that would shoot at him and hate him. However, the God of Jacob would make him strong. We also read about the military strength of Joseph in Deut 33:17

17 “His glory is like a firstborn bull,

And his horns like the horns of the wild ox;

Together with them

He shall push the peoples

To the ends of the earth;

They are the ten thousands of Ephraim,

And they are the thousands of Manasseh.”  NKJV

A few verses earlier, Moses also predicted this for Joseph’s descendants: verses 13-16

13 “And of Joseph he said”:

“Blessed of the Lord is his land,

With the precious things of heaven, with the dew,

And the deep lying beneath,”

14 “With the precious fruits of the sun,

With the precious produce of the months,”

15 “With the best things of the ancient mountains,

With the precious things of the everlasting hills,”

16 “With the precious things of the earth and its fullness,

And the favor of Him who dwelt in the bush.

Let the blessing come ‘on the head of Joseph,

And on the crown of the head of him who was separate from his brothers.” NKJV

So, in the history of humanity, what two brothers have ever fulfilled the prophesies mentioned in this article? What two brothers pushed their enemies to the end of the earth? As we have seen, these two brothers would have great military might. When considering the scope of World War II, the military might of the sons of Joseph come into focus. While many nations were caught up in that horrific conflict, what brotherly nations literally, in the end, pushed their enemies to the ends of the earth?

Remember, this is not concerning the Jews, but the other ten tribes known as the House of Israel.

The younger brother, Ephraim, is none other than Britain and the British descended peoples. His older brother, Manasseh, the single great nation, is clearly the United States of America. These two nations often refer to themselves as cousins, but they would be more appropriately called brothers, for that is precisely what they are.

America and Britain have had a good ride. But that ride is coming to an end. The sun has already set on the British Empire, and the United States’ stance with democracy is in trouble.

The Sunset on America

The Rise and Fall of America - Sunset on America
The Sun is setting on America

The balance of this article will focus on the United States of America.

We have witnessed in Scripture the roots of worldwide power and position (the sunrise). However, the U.S. (Manasseh) is following in the footsteps of its grandfather (Israel-Jacob) by turning away from God as his brother, the U.K. (Ephraim), has. God annihilated the kingdom of Israel, and the citizens that remained were carried into exile because they disobeyed God.

We (the U.S.) may attempt to be great again, but the rejection of the one whose hand guides world affairs shows otherwise. If we allow our eyes to open to the truth, we are witnessing the sunset on America. As the sunrise prophesied in the Scriptures occurred, so will the sunset
if the U.S. doesn’t get its act together because the sun is going down quickly.

It is important to note that Biblical prophecy can have more than one fulfillment of it involves a fundamental principle of God. For example, suppose a judgment is prophesied against a nation for disobedience and that prophesy is fulfilled. In that case, if another nation carries out the same disobedience, that prophesy applies to the subsequent nation as well.

Again, the sun has already set on Britain; will it set on the U.S. as well?

God is merciful, and He sends warnings seeking repentance resulting in restoration. If the subject does not heed the warnings, consequences will go forth. Let’s take a look in Lev 26:14-16

14 ” But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments,

15 “and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant,”

16 I also will do this to you: NKJV

These blessed nations have forgotten where their blessings have come from, and without repentance, dire consequences below will be the result.

Seven Curses

Below are seven curses that will fall upon America without repentance according to Bible prophecy (not necessarily in this order).

 

  1.  TerrorismOriginally recorded for Israel, this prophecy applies to the U.S. and other nations today that turn against God and His ways.

Lev 26:16

16 I also will do this unto you; I will even appoint over you terror…

911 bought shock and awe to America

2.Disease While America has the most advanced medical industries on the planet, rampant and unstoppable disease is on her footstep unless there is widespread repentance. The Corona Virus is on the scene and joins a list of diseases that have pounced upon the nation.

Mers

Ebola

SARS

HINI

 Zika

Deut 28:22

“The Lord will strike you with consumption, with fever, with inflammation, with severe burning fever”…

Through the mouth of Moses, God tells a sinning nation that is unwilling to repent and change does not expect any vaccine, cure, or quarantine to stop it.

Famine and hunger The U.S., a nation filled to the brim with food, a country whose food surpluses are used to feed the world, will be bought to a state of utter famine and hunger. This situation may be challenging for many to conceive. In addition, there will be chaos in the streets. The shelves have already been pretty empty during the pandemic.

Lev 26:19-20

19 I will break the pride of your power; I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze.

20 And your strength shall be spent in vain; for your land shall not yield its produce, nor shall the trees of the land yield their fruit.

National Debt No nation in the world hold more national debt than America. As of this writing, as reported in US Debtclock.org, the national debt was set at more than 25 Trillion Dollars! That is enough U.S. dollar bills to stretch to the moon and back more than 850 times.

Yet, the U.S. enjoys the complete confidence of the world with the faith that the nation will fulfill its obligations. This confidence will fade according to Bible prophecy.

Deut 28:43-44

43 “The alien who is among you shall rise higher and higher above you, and you shall come down lower and lower. 44 He shall lend to you, but you shall not lend to him; he shall be the head, and you shall be the tail.

The U.S., accustomed to being the wealthiest nation on earth, will learn what it is to be on the opposite end of the scale as it discovers poverty and indebtedness.

Prov. 22:7

7 The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender.

Complete military defeat Currently, the United States posses the most powerful and well equipped, most technically advanced military force in the history of the world. However, Biblical prophecy is clear what will occur should America fail to repent and acknowledge its creator and benefactor.

Deut 28:25

25 “The Lord will cause you to be defeated before your enemies; you shall go out one way against them and flee seven ways before them; and you shall become troublesome to all the kingdoms of the earth.”

Lev 26:17

“I will set My face against you, and you shall be defeated by your enemies. Those who hate you shall reign over you, and you shall flee when no one pursues you.”

Cities will be devastated Ezek 6:6

6 “In all your dwelling places the cities shall be laid waste, and the high places shall be desolate, so that your altars may be laid waste and made desolate, your idols may be broken and made to cease, your incense altars may be cut down, and your works may be abolished.”

Lev 26:31-32

31 “I will lay your cities waste and bring your sanctuaries to desolation, and I will not smell the fragrance of your sweet aromas.”

32 “I will bring the land to desolation, and your enemies who dwell in it shall be astonished at it.”

Slavery
Deut. 28:64-65

64 “Then the Lord will scatter you among all peoples, from one end of the earth to the other, and there you shall serve other gods, which neither you nor your fathers have known — wood and stone. 65 And among those nations you shall find no rest, nor shall the sole of your foot have a resting place; but there the Lord will give you a trembling heart, failing eyes, and anguish of soul.”

These passages serve as a warning and an attempt to wake the U.S. up to its spiritual condition. What can we do in light of these upcoming conditions?

Unless the nation repents, these calamities are sure to come. There is hope.

1 Tim 2:2

Heb 12:6

Luke 21 36

We cannot control whether or not the nation repents, but we as individuals can repent.

2 Chron. 7:14

14 “if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” NKJV

This Scripture contains the prescription. If the U.S. falls, other nations will follow.

Bottom line: The nation needs to repent and return to God.

Amen

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Questions, comments, and concerns are welcomed below. You will receive a response

 

 

 

What is the Antichrist?

Anyone who has been a Christian for any length of time has heard of the Antichrist. But how many Christians really know what the Antichrist is? I hope that by the time you have reached the end of this article, you will know the answer to the question: what is the Antichrist?

What is the Antichrist?

In eschatology (the study of the end-times), the anti-Christ, or Antichrist, refers to people or forces prophesied by the Scriptures to oppose Christ and substitute themselves in Christ’s place before His Second Coming. The word “Antichrist” is found five times in the New Testament, solely in John’s First and Second Epistles.

Therefore, the Antichrist refers to people or forces. But which one is it? Can it be both?

Acts 20:28-30

“Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. 29 For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.” NKJV

The warning from Paul to the Christian leaders was that the spirit of the anti-Christ was among them both within and without the church.

Biblical prophecy reveals that Satan would attempt to change God’s law.

We must understand that two forces are competing for the loyalty of humanity today.

  • – One is the dark forces of the evil of this world
  • – The other is the forces of heaven

This competition becomes apparent in a vision that the prophet Daniel experienced.

Dan 7:2-3

2 “Daniel said: “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me were the four winds of heaven churning up the great sea. 3 Four great beasts, each different from the others, came up out of the sea.” NIV

This vision is the same as the one in chapter 2. Daniel had a prophetic vision, and it is for us to understand what he saw in this vision.

Some Biblical prophecy is symbolic, and the prophetic symbols in this vision are as follows:

  • Seas—peoples, nations, tongues, and languages [Rev. 17:15]
  • – Wind—war [Jer. 49:36-37]
  • – Beasts—kingdoms [Dan. 7:17]

The interpretation is this: Daniel saw in his vision by night, four great wars stirring up among the great nations and four great kingdoms arouse from the great nations, each was different from the other.

Here we have the first indication that the Antichrist is not a person but a kingdom.

Dan 7:4

4 “The first was like a lion, and it had the wings of an eagle. I watched until its wings were torn off and it was lifted from the ground so that it stood on two feet like a man, and the heart of a man was given to it. “NIV

This lion represents Babylon 605-539 BC

The lion had eagle wings—the eagle’s wings are more powerful than any What is the Antichrist? - Daniel 7:4other bird. Wings in Bible prophesy represent speed, which means that this kingdom moved faster and higher than any other kingdom.

Dan 7:5

5 “And there before me was a second beast, which looked like a bear. It was raised up on one of its sides, and it had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. It was told, ‘Get up and eat your fill of flesh!” NIV

The bear represented the second kingdom—Medo-Persia 539-331 BC.

  • –  The three ribs in its teeth represent the three kingdoms that it devoured: Lydia, Libya, and Egypt.
  • – It was raised on one side—because it was a composite kingdom made up of two kingdoms, the Meds and Persians. One kingdom dominated the other in terms of rulership.

Dan 7:6

6 “After that, I looked, and there before me was another beast, one that looked like a leopard. And on its back it had four wings like those of a bird. This beast had four heads, and it was given authority to rule.” NIV

The Leopard represented the third kingdom—Greece 331-168 BC led by Alexander the Great.

It had four wings as opposed to Babylon, meaning Greece conquered at two times more the speed of Babylon.

Alexander covered the distance of 2000 miles in 2 yrs on horseback and conquered every known kingdom that existed at that time.

Dan 7:7

7 “After that, in my vision at night I looked, and there before me was a fourth beast — terrifying and frightening and very powerful. It had large iron teeth; it crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left. It was different from all the former beasts, and it had ten horns.” NIV

  • This beast represented Rome 168 BC-AD 476
  • Rome was the strongest of the four kingdoms
  • It increased in Military strength, but it decreased in moral value
  • Rome was known as the iron kingdom—represented with the iron teeth
  • It was vicious and barbaric in nature and trampled upon everything under its feet.

Dan 7:24 “the ten horns are ten kings who shall arise from this kingdom. And another shall rise after them; He shall be different from the first ones And shall subdue three kings.”

  • Horns represent kingdoms, and the ten (10) horns on the beast signified that Rome would be divided into ten kingdoms.
  • In AD 476—the second kingdom arrived. These subsequent kingdoms are
  •  Germany—Alamanni
  •  Swiss—Burgundian
  •  France—Franks
  •  Italy—Lombards
  •  England—Saxons
  •  Portugal—Suevi
  •  Spain—Visigoths
  •  Heruli, Vandals, and Ostrogoths became extinct

Dan 7:8

8 “While I was thinking about the horns, there before me was another horn, What is the Antichrist? - Daniel 7:8a little one, which came up among them; and three of the first horns were uprooted before it. This horn had eyes like the eyes of a man and a mouth that spoke boastfully.” NIV

  • Daniel saw a little horn emerge from among the ten horns or kingdoms. That had the eyes of a man. Eyes represent human intelligence and wisdom.
  • He was different from the other kings, and on his way up, he wiped out three kingdoms by the roots. This action means these kingdoms were completely annihilated.
  • – This horn emerged from Rome, which means it originated from Rome or Western Europe. [476 AD]
  • – It aroused after the ten horns did: after Rome’s breakup, it was a newer kingdom than the others of Europe were.
  • The residue of Rome today has come to be represented by the nations of modern-day Western Europe. Each of these countries is ruled by a monarch.

It was different in that it was not only a political power but a religious power as well—speaking blasphemous words.” In addition, it displaced three (3) nations.

From the— The Monumental History of Christianity pp. 42, 43

“Out of the ruins of the Roman Empire, there gradually arose a new order of states whose central point was the Papal See. Therefore, inevitably resulted in a position not only new but very different from the former.”

The prefix Anti—does not always mean against but also can mean in place
of or instead of something. The antichrist is not a kingdom that is against Christ but replaces Christ.

This little horn symbolizes a powerful religious system that would align itself with the last seven (7) of the ten (10) political horns that were to arise after the fall of Rome. This synchronization amid church and state produced what eventually became known as the Holy Roman Empire.

Daniel continues his interpretation of the little horn in verse 21:

Verses 21-24

21 “I was watching; and the same horn was making war against the saints, and prevailing against them, 22 until the Ancient of Days came, and a judgment was made in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came for the saints to possess the kingdom.” (23) “Thus he said: ‘The fourth beast shall be A fourth kingdom on earth, Which shall be different from all other kingdoms, And shall devour the whole earth, Trample it and break it in pieces. (24) The ten horns are ten kings Who shall arise from this kingdom. And another shall rise after them; He shall be different from the first ones, And shall subdue three kings.” NKJV

This power was a persecuting power.

25 He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, Shall persecute the saints of the Most High, And shall intend to change times and law. Then the saints shall be given into his hand For a time and times and half a time. NKJV

[time represents 1yr (360 days), times= 2 years (720 days), half a time is half a year (180 days) totals 3 ½ years. 360+720+180=1260 days]

This little horn makes war against the saints, speaks pompous words against God, intends to change times and law, and persecuted the saints for a “time and times and half a time” (literally three and a half years, but using the day-for-a-year principle of Numbers 14:34 and Ezekiel 4:6, 1,260 years).

This Scripture speaks of a kingdom that will rule 1260 years. Therefore, the antichrist cannot be a person because a person cannot rule for 1260 years.

These 1260 years symbolize the papal oppression. This time began in the early 6th century. The last Roman emperor, Romulus Augustulus, was forced from his throne in 476 AD.

The barbarians who did not accept the Catholic religion controlled the city until 538. The Byzantine Empire under General Belisarius had victories in the Gothic wars that allowed Rome to become an influential center for the Roman Catholic authority that ruled during the Middle Ages.

Confirmation of this persecution can be observed through the centuries, as hundreds and thousands of individuals in Europe lost their lives through the inquisitions of the Roman Catholic judicial system. They were tormented for confessions of being nonconformists and killed because they would not yield to the authority and doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church and the Pope.

22 “until the Ancient One—the Most High—came and judged in favor of his holy people. Then the time arrived for the holy people to take over the What is the Antichrist - Daniel 7:22kingdom.”

The Roman Catholic political power reached its crest in the 12th century and then gradually eroded, weakened by internal corruption in the Church and the Protestant Reformation that took large property segments out of the Roman realm of influence.

The death toll of Catholic military authority in Europe arrived with the French and Italian revolutions. A symbolic but essential date was 1798, when the armies of France took Pope Pius VI as a prisoner. The striking removal of the head of the Church from Rome came precisely 1260 years after 538 AD, the year in which the barbarians were driven from Rome.

Although the inquisitions of that time were abolished, the Bible indicates religious persecutions from the “little horn” will return, resulting in the death of many before Christ returns.

It will “intend”
to change times and laws. Another aspect of the prophesied actions of the little horn is that in addition to speaking pompous words against God and persecuting His people, this false religious system would “intend to change times and law.”
History indicates that the Roman Catholic Church has done this.

Believing that it had the power to change God’s laws, this church has switched the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday and substituted its particular days of worship for the holy days of the Bible. For further explanation, see Saturday vs. Sunday Worship on this website.

It will “intend” to change times and laws.

Below are some confirmations of this intent; some are even from Catholic sources.

From the—Ancient Church, pp. vi, vii – “In the interval between the days of the apostles and the conversion of Constantine…Rites and ceremonies of which neither Paul nor Peter ever heard, crept silently into use and then claimed the ranks of divine institutions.”

From the—The Faith of our Fathers, p. 89 – “You may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday.”

From the—The Convert’s Catechism—Peter German, 1977, p.50, question and answer

Q:” Which is the Sabbath Day?”What is the Antichrist - The Sabbath

A: “Saturday is the Sabbath Day”

Q: “Why do we observe Saturday instead of Sunday?”

A:  “The Catholic (universal) church transferred the solemnity from Saturday to Sunday.”

Catholic Encyclopedia vol. 4, p. 153 – “The church,…after changing the day of rest from the Jewish Sabbath, or seventh day of the week, to the first, made the third commandment refer to Sunday as the day to be kept holy as the Lord’s day.”

  • The Catholic Church changed the Ten Commandments by removing the 3rd Commandment concerning graven images and moved the 4th Commandment up to the 3rd, then dividing the 10th Commandment into two, still counting Ten Commandments. Again, “They will seek to change times and laws.”

From—Karl Keating, Catholicism and fundamentalism, 1988 p, 38- fundamentalist meet for worship on Sunday, yet there is no evidence in the Bible that corporate worship was to be made on Sundays. The Jewish Sabbath, or day of rest, was, of course, Saturday. It was the Catholic church that decided Sunday should be the day of worship for Christians, in honor of the resurrection.”

From—Controversial Catechism, p. 53 –

Q. When Protestants do profane work upon Saturday, or the seventh day of the week, do they follow Scripture as their only rule of faith?

A. “On the contrary, they have only the authority of tradition for this practice. In profaning Saturday, they violate one of God’s Commandments, which, on their principles, has never been abrogated”:  ‘Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.’ (Exodus 20:8)”

Cannon and Tradition, p. 263 – “The authority of the church could therefore not be bound to the authority of the Scriptures, because the church had changed…the Sabbath to Sunday, not by the command of Christ, but by its own authority.”

From—St, Catherine Catholic Church, Sentinel, May 21, 1995 – “People who think that the Scriptures should be the sole authority, should logically become 7th day Adventists and keep Saturday holy.”

  • – The antichrist is not a person: the antichrist is a kingdom that has put itself in place of Christ, making itself the third member of the Godhead.
  • – Blasphemy is claiming to be God or having the ability to forgive sins, which this kingdom has proclaimed.

This kingdom is: THE VATICAN!

Conclusion

Daniel, in his vision, additionally saw the conclusion regarding the “little horn,” that when Jesus Christ returns, “the court [judgment] shall be seated, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and destroy it forever” (verse 26; Revelation 18:2).

Verse 26

“But the court shall be seated, And they shall take away his dominion, To consume and destroy it forever. “ NKJV

Also, Rev 18:1-2

18 “After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory. 2 And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! “ NKJV

The origin of the little horn is Babylon, which is doomed to fall, and the kingdom of Christ will prevail.

Any questions, comments, and concerns may be left below. You will receive a response.

For more articles, click onto www.TheChristianAdvocate.org

Blessings!!

 

 

What are the 7 Spiritual Laws of Success?

How do you define success? Is it by level of income, bank account size, make of car, the size of a home, education, or career? Are these things really true success?  Do they provide lasting satisfaction? A closer examination will uncover that they are not. A lasting value is what defines true success in life, one that society cannot take away. This success is achieved by obeying the 7 spiritual laws of success. Therefore, what are the 7 spiritual laws of success?

Seven Principles for True Success

1. Set the right goal— Goals are important. Successful individuals always set goals. However, it is equally important to select the correct goal. Most of our goals are based on our external, material needs. However, we also have internal, spiritual needs that God has placed in us.

Eccl 3:11 reads:

11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. NIV

God has “set eternity in the hearts of men.” This phrase denotes that we can by no means be completely satisfied with earthly pleasures and pursuits. Because we are formed in God’s image,

  • we have a spiritual thirst
  • we have eternal value
  • nothing but the infinite God can truly satisfy us.

The Lord God has built in us a restless yearning for the kind of perfect world that can only be found in his perfect rule. God has given us a glimpse of the perfection of his creation. However, it is only a glimpse; we cannot see into the future or comprehend everything. Therefore, we must trust God now and do his work on earth.

Jesus offered the prescription for filling this restless yearning.

Matt 6:31-33

31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

The things that we usually worry about are secondary to the most important and crucial goal of all; seeking the Kingdom of God.

Whatever occupation or career goal we have, it must be to the glory of God. 1 Cor. 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” NIV

Setting the right goal produces true success. Our ultimate goal is the Kingdom of God. Therefore, we must make sure our goals contribute to lasting values (where we will spend eternity).

Bottom line: We must set goals that will yield lasting fulfillment by helping others and glorifying God.

2. Educate (or prepare) yourself—what knowledge and preparation is needed to accomplish the goal? We must never stop seeking knowledge as long as it leads to true wisdom.

There are two kinds of wisdom, James 3:13-15, 17

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. 15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, of the devil.

17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. 18 Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness. NIV

What are the 7 spiritual laws of success - heavenly wisdom vs earthly wisdom
Seek the correct wisdom!

This passage describes the two types of wisdom.

The first type is fleshly wisdom that is unspiritual and from the devil. It leads to selfish ambition and envy. This is the wrong kind of wisdom that the world seeks. The wisdom of the world seeks power, position, and material possession and measures success by them. It is not true wisdom at all and does not produce lasting happiness.

The second wisdom is from above, from God, and produces good fruit and leads to happiness and peace. It yields service to others. While the false, worldly wisdom operates on the “get” principle, which is the default human nature of—self.

The knowledge we acquire must lead to true wisdom.What are the 7 Spiritual Laws of Success - Fear of the Lord

Prov1:7 “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

Prov., 9:10 “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.”

Wisdom is the application of knowledge, and wisdom begins with knowing God. God gives insight into living because He created life. To know God, we must not just know the facts about Him; but we must have a personal relationship with him. If we genuinely want to be wise, we must get to know God better and better.

Scripture tells us how. James 1:5

5 If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. NIV

What is meant by “wisdom” here is not only knowledge but about the capability to make wise decisions, especially in difficult situations. Whenever wisdom is needed, we can pray to God, and He will generously provide what we need. We can always ask God for wisdom to guide our choices.

2 Peter 1:2

2 “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord.”

Many Christians desire an abundance of God’s grace and peace but are unwilling to make an effort needed to get to know him better through Bible study and prayer. To benefit from the privileges God offers us freely, we must grow in our knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord.

2 Peter 3:18

18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

Bottom line: we need godly wisdom and knowledge for true success.

3. Maintain good health— We have a responsibility to honor God with our bodies.

1 Cor. 6:19-20

19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body. NIV

When an individual becomes a Christian, the Holy Spirit arrives to live in him. Consequently, he no longer owns his body. Because his body now belongs to God, he must not violate God’s standards for living.

1 Tim 4:8

8 “For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that is now and of that which is to come.”

What are the 7 spiritual laws of success - Maintain good health
We must physically AND spiritually fit!

We will be in better shape to achieve our goals if we strive for physical fitness. However, physical fitness is limited, for we must be in shape both physically and spiritually.
A great deal of emphasis is placed on physical fitness in our society. However, spiritual health is even more critical. Our physical health is subject to injury and disease, but faith can uphold us through any tragedy. To condition ourselves to be godly, we must grow our faith by using our God-given capacities for the duties of the church.

Bottom line: we must develop our spiritual muscles as well as our physical ones.

4. Drive yourself—Rest is essential, but we can’t overdo it. God warns against being lazy.

Prov. 6:6-11

what are the 7 spiritual laws of success - perserverance
We must be as determined as ants to achieve our goals!

6 “Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! 7 It has no

commander, no overseer or ruler, 8 yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest. 9 How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? 10 A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest —  11 and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man.” NIV

God uses the ant as an example that works diligently at its goal on its own without supervision. Once the goal is established, work at it until completion.

Bottom line: The motto for accomplishing a goal; keep it moving!

5. Be resourceful—the unexpected can and will happen. However, we must always search to find the resources available—do not give up, ask for wise counsel.

Prov. 15:22

22 “without counsel, plans go awry, but in a multitude of counselors they are established.”

We must constantly investigate our options, ask and pray for God’s help. Look at what happens when we ask for help. Matt 14:28-31

28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”

29 “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”

31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” NIV

When Peter looked at his circumstance, he became overwhelmed and began to sink. but he cried out to the Lord and the Lord saved him.

We must never doubt. However, being human, we can stumble, and when we do, we must ask for help, and God will deliver.

what are the 7 spiritual laws of success - seek help

We stumble when we look from Him to stare at ourselves or the circumstances that surround us. We should not be running for ourselves but Christ, and we should always keep him in our sight.

Bottom line: We must seek resources to deal with unexpected circumstances. After that, ask God for help. We must do our best and let God do the rest!

6. We must persevere toward our goals—we must stick to our goals; sticktoitiveness is in order—never give in!

Heb 12:1-2

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses,let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easiy ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. (2) Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” NKJV

The Christian’s life entails hard work. It compels us to give up anything that endangers our relationship with God, to run with stamina, and to toil against sin with the power of the Holy Spirit. To live effectively, we must keep our eyes on Jesus, ‘the author and finisher of our faith.”

Bottom line:  we must run the race of life with perseverance!

7. Seek God’s continual guidance—In order to fulfill the previous six laws, we must follow this one. Seeking God: we must pray to Him, acknowledge Him, and follow Him.

Prov. 3:5-7,

5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; (6) in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. (7) Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil.

We are to trust the Lord in all of our circumstances and at all times. Being What are the 7 spiritual laws of success - trust in the Lordwise in our own eyes yields the wrong wisdom and results.

God promises to direct our paths and lead us through life to fulfill our human potential and ultimate destiny. Nevertheless, we must pray daily and act on the precious promises contained in His Word.

Isaiah 55:6-7,

”Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. (7) Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”

Hebrew 13:5 “…I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

As the seven laws of success are applied, we will enjoy God’s blessings and true success. God desires us to live happy and abundant lives, but many chase happiness as a goal in itself. As a result, they become frustrated, aggravated, and discouraged. What needs to be recognized is that happiness is a consequence of something else—filling in the void mentioned above.

Bottom line – The greatest happiness comes as a consequence of having the greatest purpose, seeking God’s kingdom. A successful person is one who has discovered the will of God for their life and walks in it.

Amen

Questions, comments, concerns, and experiences with the 7 spiritual laws of success are welcomed below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

For more articles see: TheChristianAdvocate.org

 

 

The Bible and Cancel Culture

The postmodern movement is moving forward faster than ever. This movement has manifested itself to the point that subjectivity is ubiquitous in the land. One of the increasingly prevalent tenets of postmodernism is cancel culture. This culture seeks to cancel anything that isn’t popular. But does that include the Bible? This article addresses the Bible and cancel culture.

What is Cancel Culture?

Cancel culture is also known as call-out culture. Cancel culture is the term used for the growing trend of modern society to censor individuals who advocate socially disfavored or unpopular viewpoints. Those subjected to this exclusion are said to have been “canceled.”

Cancel culture is not new but a current form of ostracism. The principle of canceling a person or product has been around for quite some time. Both non-conservatives and conservatives have applied it in the form of boycotting. However, lately, social media has propelled it into a widespread force that punishes the victim for all sorts of what may be considered moral violations. This force will threaten, ridicule, and even attempt the offending party fired from their job. Actually, cancel culture has cost teachers, journalists, actors, scientists, etc., their assignments.

This canceling can occur for being on the wrong side of such topics as:

    • Black Lives Matter
      – A movement encouraging equal civil rights.

 

  • Critical Race Theory – An examination of society as it relates to race and power.
  • Gender Identity – A person’s sense of their own gender regardless of biology
  • Intersectionality – How discrimination and privilege exhibits in a person’s social framework
  • LGBTQ – An acronym to symbolize many sexual deviations
  • Race/Racism – Discrimination or privilege according to an individual’s skin color.
  • Sexism – Discrimination of privilege according to a person’s sexual orientation
  • Socialism – Increased governmental control with a decrease of personal freedom
  • Transsexuality – The surgical changing of an individual’s sex that they were born as
  • White Privilege
    The fundamental privilege in society as a result of being white

Based on today’s culture in the U.S., the standard that defines what is acceptable or not is a liberal, pro-abortion, pro-LGBTQ mindset. If an individual disagrees with the progressive liberal agenda, they can lose their reputation, popularity, or even their job. Ironically, cancel culture is a hypocritical attitude of intolerance while simultaneously demanding tolerance. Its intensity and reach differ and are deeply entrenched in today’s society. As a result, it is causing a restriction on free speech and adding to the ever-present divisive atmosphere. A recently published national survey indicates a rise in self-censorship when citizens decline to express their views.

Cancel Culture and the Bible

Is it possible that the Bible is subject to cancel culture? Well, think about it; the Bible speaks against the liberal pop culture mindset mentioned above. However, this is an insidious process.

The Bible is very popular, especially in the west. For example, in the U.S., we

The Bible and cancel culture
The Inspired Word of God

have religious freedom. Even though it is somewhat of a façade in the current cultural environment, the outright elimination of the Bible would be the epitome of religious bias. This point makes suppression of the Scriptures objectionable, at least for now.

However, postmodernism has ushered in a time of shocking eagerness to repress and prohibit content that is disagreeable with the liberal agenda.

In this suppressive environment, many are taking advantage of what they observe as an opportunity to confront the ideas contained in the Bible rather than the Bible itself.  However, the desire is there, and this step-by-step approach comprises the insidious process of cancel culture’s attack on the Bible.

If Satan cannot get in the front door, he will attempt the backdoor as long as he can get in. We are warned about this in the Scriptures: Eph 4:27-28, “and do not give the devil a foothold.” NIV

Let us look at some of the issues under condemnation.

THE GOVERNMENT

To the chagrin of many in the Christian community, the desire to cancel the Bible has invaded our government. There has been a deep desire to eliminate biblical principles from the government. Over time this effort has grown deeper in intensity, scope, and explicitly.

This movement basically began with a controversy over displaying the Ten Commandments on government property.

In 1992, Justice Roy Moore was thrust into the national spotlight when he placed a wood carving of the Ten Commandments in his Etowah County courtroom. He has been the focus of praise and criticism since.

Numerous states filed suits against displaying the Ten Commandments. In 2005, a strikingly divided Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of displaying the Ten Commandments on government land. Still, it drew the The Bible and Cancel Cultureline on displays in the interior of courthouses, stating they violated the doctrine of separation of church and state.

Another dramatic illustration of this cancellation occurred in 2018 at the confirmation hearings for the then-nominee for Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo. He was grilled about his personal views, specifically regarding comments he made when the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage.

Similarly, a nominee to the D.C. Circuit Court was quizzed about their opinion regarding gay relationships being sinful or not. What is particularly interesting about these events is the U.S. Constitution bans religious tests for individuals desiring to serve in public office. Their personal views are not to be considered. Yet, it was praised by some.

Creation

Keep in mind that this assault on Biblical principles did not stop with the government but the private sector as well.

Creationism believes that the universe and living organisms originate from specific acts of divine creation, as in the biblical account, rather than natural processes such as evolution. Creationism has been under severe attack. For example, in March of 2021, it was recommended by a prominent

 

scientist that schools teaching any form of creationism that “deviates from national norms” should “prominently disclose” the occurrence of such instruction on transcripts and materials to make certain that those classes are not permitted to be a factor toward recognized science degrees.

In other words, “deviates from national norms” means “does not embrace evolution as the origin of life.” This action is an outright cancellation of a Biblical principle.

Numerous individuals have seen their careers damaged for acknowledging that there is considerable scientific evidence for the intelligent design theory behind the origin and diversity of life—a stance far too close to the Bible’s narrative of God to be permitted to go “uncanceled.”

For example, the President of the University of Idaho drafted a letter to all faculty, staff, and students stating that only evolution is “appropriate to be taught in our bio-physical sciences.” The letter indirectly said that disagreeing with evolution is only possible through philosophical and religious concerns, which contradicts research that produces credibility on intelligent design, a form of creationism.

In addition, a Double-Ph.D. biologist faced professional harassment for allowing the publication of a paper welcoming to the idea of intelligent design.

A Distinguished paleontologist was forced to leave his museum position after a 17-year career and an enormous number of publications when he orally expressed public cooperation for the idea that scientific proof points to an intelligent basis to life. These stories are documented at the website FreeScience.today.

The message is clear: even an inkling of biblical ideas of life’s beginnings and diversity or disagreement with the dogma of evolution is enough to be canceled.

Abortion

The Biblical principle on life in the womb is under severe attack. The Bible is clear on the sanctity of human life created in the image of God. Gen 1:26 “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…”

The Bible also expresses how precious life in the womb is and the punishment for causing it harm.

Ex 21:22-25

22 “If men who are fighting hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman’s husband demands and the court allows. 23 But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burns for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise. NIV

This Scripture indicates that injury and death to an unborn child is equal to that of a child outside of the womb, and the punishment is to be administered accordingly.

Scripture further reflects how God regards life in the womb as a living human being. Jer. 1:5

5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” NIV

This Scripture is one of a few passages confirming how God views life in the womb.

Abortion is so widely accepted in the U.S. that anyone who holds the Biblical view of life in the womb is finding it difficult to express it publically.

Anyone that believes the unborn must be respected as a human being, made in the image of God, is subject to be canceled.

The list goes on: marriage, homosexuality, justice, and morality are all addressed in the Bible for direction and application. Yet, these precepts are increasingly ignored.

The Cost of Canceling the Bible

Many are increasingly ejecting their ideas of what they feel is a just society, and the Bible does not reflect those ideas. In fact, it is just the opposite. So why not cancel those ideas so that we can walk in our own reality. The problem is, those realities are just dreams, and in time, the actual realities will reemerge. Society may become subjective, but God remains objective and will have the last word. Scripture addresses this as well.

The cost of canceling the Bible is devastating. Many of the foundations of society are based on principles found in the Bible. As our society turns away from the Bible and as our society turns away from God, anarchy occurs.

We are currently experiencing this in the U.S. There is rebellion against authority. We are shooting one another in the streets. We cannot even make rational decisions to protect ourselves and our loved ones, and our government is increasingly dysfunctional.

Without God, all that is left is the government, and when the government is dysfunctional, the result is nihilism—the state that all existence is useless, senseless, and meaningless. Yet, we wonder why the suicide rate is what it is.

We may think that we know more than God does; we may think that we are wise. However, that is not what Scripture says. Rom 1:21-22:

21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator — who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.

28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. NIV


This state of affairs is the result when God is removed from life. God just

The Bible and Cancel Culture
WARNING: DON’T DO IT!

turns us over to our depraved minds, and all hell breaks loose literally.

When we cancel the Bible, we are canceling God. Canceling the Bible is foolish, and it is futile!

Any questions, comments, concerns, or if you would like to share an experience involving cancel culture, it can be left below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

 

 

 

666 Mark of the Beast

The book of Revelation, the final book in the Bible, is a book of mystery written by the Apostle John during his exile on the island of Patmos. The reason for its mystery is that it is an apocalyptic letter that relies heavily on symbols, visions, and Old Testament references in order to reveal the ultimate fulfillment of God’s promise given to Abraham back in the book of Genesis. One of the most intriguing revelations is the 666 mark of the beast.

The Mark of the Beast a Study

The first thing to realize is to emphasize again is that Revelation is heavily symbolic. Therefore, the 666 mark of the beast is symbolic. But, of what?

Let’s look at Rev 14:6-7

6 Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth — to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people — 7 saying with a loud voice, “Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.” NKJV

To look at the symbolism here, we have angels flying. Wings represent speed, and here we have angels moving with rapid speed with an urgent message that Jesus is soon to arrive. We, the readers, are encouraged to worship the Creator because there is another power competing for our worship.

Verses 9-11

9 Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, 10 he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. 11 And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.” NKJV

A central theme in Revelation is the colliding of true and false worship.

Back in chapter 13, the believers are told how difficult it would be for them if they refused the beast’s mark. However, in these verses, an angel explained to the nonbelievers what would happen to them if they did receive the beast’s mark. Their ultimate judgment would be much worse and the penalty eternal. While those who belong to God would suffer and be killed, they would have a glorious eternity awaiting them (14:1-5). However, those who worship the beast and accept his mark would choose to operate according to the Antichrist’s world economic system and ultimately face God’s judgment. To attain what the world merits, these individuals would have turned away from God and violated Christian principles.

Verse 12

12 Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. NKJV

This message is given by a God whose heart is filled with love

Here are the saints that endure. In the last days, all through the great 666 Mark of the Beast - Revelation 14:12tribulation, Christians will face dreadful times. They will have to reject Christ and accept the mark of the beast or else face death. But, if they persevere for Christ, if they are sincere in believing that heaven is real and that Christ loves them, only then will they escape the judgment of God. However, only those who persist and truly set their lives apart unto God, only those, will avoid the coming judgment.

Therefore, we have a presentation of two kinds of worship: those who worship the beast and those who keep the Commandments of God and the faith of Jesus Christ.”

The final conflict is revolved around the matter of worship: whom we worship, when we worship, or even whether or not we worship. Therefore, there is no escape because every person on earth is involved in some form of worship.

Either we worship God or something else because we were all created to worship. [Eccl. 3:11]

  • The fact that we have been created automatically lends itself to the concept of worship.

So, what is the basis of true worship? Rev 4:11

11 “You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.” NKJV

What qualifies God for worship is the fact that He created all things, and it is by His will they exist.

God has left us a sign of His creative authority.

Ex 20:8-11

8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. (9) Six days you shall labor and do all your work, (10) but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. (11) For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.

  • The Lord has left the 7th day of the week as a sign of His creative authority.
  • When every Sabbath occurs, it is a reminder that it is God who made everything.

Ezek 20:12 12

Moreover I also gave them My Sabbaths, to be a sign between them and Me, that they might know that I am the Lord who sanctifies them.

Rom 4:11

11 And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had while still uncircumcised, that he might be the father of all those who believe, though they are uncircumcised, that righteousness might be imputed to them also,

  • Here we see that the words sign and seal
    are used interchangeably
  • Therefore the sign that God has left and the seal of God are one and the same

Isa 8:16

16 Bind up the testimony, Seal the law among my disciples.

  •  A sign that God has left as His creative authority is the same as a seal, “seal the law among my disciples.”
  • God’s seal is in the heart of God’s Law
  • It is akin to the ancient Middle Eastern tradition placing a seal of the dominant king in the middle of a covenant between nations that it is his covenant.
  • This is the same approach God took when He made the covenant between Himself and His people. He placed His seal in the middle of the covenant, which is the seventh-day Sabbath.
  • His seal contains His name, His title, and His territory.
  • A seal authenticates a document. Therefore, the seal makes it binding.
  • God’s seal contains His name, the Lord Thy God
  • His Title—Creator
  • His territory—The heaven and the earth

God’s seal stands in contrast to the mark of the beast.
Therefore, if God’s seal is a sign of His creative authority, then the
mark of the beast will be a sign of the beast’s authority.

Rev 7:2-3

2 Then I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God. And he cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, (3) saying, “Do not harm the earth, the sea, or the trees till we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads.”

  • The seal of God is received in the forehead
  • The forehead represents the seat of intelligence, meaning that receiving the seal of God would be an intelligent unforced decision for an individual to make in his mind.

Heb 8:10

For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.

God’s seal says to “remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy” therefore, God’s seal and law which is in the mind, is an intelligent, unforced decision to serve God.

However, Satan has attacked God’s Sabbath because it is the seal of God’s Law.

Dan 7:25

He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, Shall persecute the saints of the Most High, And shall intend to change times and law. Then the saints shall be given into his hand For a time and times and half a time.

Since the final issue revolves around worship, what power claims it has the authority to change God’s Law?

Previously, we identified that the antichrist beast is a kingdom and the little horn (Dan. 7:8) was a little kingdom somewhere in Europe called the Vatican or the Papacy.

From the St. Catherine Catholic Church sentinel 5/21/1995:

“perhaps the boldest thing, the most revolutionary change the church ever did happened in the first century. The holy day, the Sabbath, was changed from Saturday to Sunday…not from any directions noted in the Scriptures, but from the Church’s sense of its own power…”

This statement is an admission that the church (the universal—Catholic church) changed the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday.

From the St. Catherine Catholic Church Sentinel 5/21/1995 – “People who think that the Scriptures should be the sole authority, should logically become 7th day Adventists and keep Saturday holy.”

This statement acknowledges that the Catholic Church worked against the authority of the Scriptures when it changed the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday.

From the Decretal De Translat. Espicop.cap. “The Pope has changed times, to abrogate laws, and to dispense with all things, even the precepts of Christ.”

This is fulfilled prophecy and confirmation that Satan, through the Pope, has attacked God’s seal of the Sabbath, the basis of all worship.

The Sabbath is God’s seal and sign that He is the Creator. Satan has nothing that indicates that he is the Creator. Therefore, since he desires worship through all of the earthly powers, he must then attempt to erase or remove that which tells us that God is the Creator. Because if we have no evidence that God is the Creator, if we forget that God is the Creator, then he (Satan) can establish his monkey business doctrine:

  • That humans came from monkeys
  • That we came from nowhere
  • That we can worship anything
  • That we can do anything on our own without God666 Mark of the Beast - Revelation 13:1

In Revelation 13, we have the beast. In the symbolic nature of Revelation, the beast represents a kingdom. Rev 13:1-2

1 Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name. 2 Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority.

  • Seas represent people’s, nations, and tongues
  • Beasts represent kingdoms
  • A crown represents smaller kingdoms
  • Monarchs rule the smaller kingdomsThis beast represents a kingdom that is a composition of the four kingdoms that went before it.

    ·   It looked like the kingdom of Greece [Leopard?]

    ·   It walked like the kingdom of Persia [bear?]

    ·   It speaks like the kingdom of Babylon [Lion?]

    ·  The kingdom of Rome gave it its power [Dragon]—where is the dragon?

    Since this kingdom receives its power from the kingdom of Rome (the dragon), it must be a Roman power.

    Note: The large red dragon, with seven crowns on its seven heads
    from Rev. 12:3, symbolizes the (pagan) Roman Empire. The banner of the
    cavalry of the Roman army was a red dragon. Jesus referred to this
    banner as the abomination of desolation in Matthew 24:15.

    • Dan 7:23 “Thus he said: ‘The fourth beast shall be A fourth kingdom on earth,” [study verses 23-25]·  The little horn and the beast of Revelation 13 are the same.

      ·  It came up among the ten

      ·  It was after A.D.476

      ·  It was a little horn (kingdom)

      ·  It uprooted three kingdoms

      ·  It has a little leader

      ·  It was diverse (different from all the others)

      ·  It was blasphemous

      ·  It was persecuting

      ·  It has changed God’s law

      ·  It ruled for 1260 years

      ·  It was (is) based in RomeRevelation identifies the dragon as Satan

    Revelation identifies the dragon as Satan.

    Rev 12:9  And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.666 Mrk of the Beast - Revelation 12:3

    • Satan works through human agencies.
    • The dragon working through pagan Rome attempted to kill Jesus.
    • It was a Roman official that tried to kill Jesus (King Herod)
    • A Roman Governor condemned Jesus.
    • A Roman sealed His tomb
    • A Roman guard watched His tomb.
    • It was under the kingdom of Rome that Jesus was crucified.

    ·  Labianca, Professor of History, University of Rome—“The
    succession of the Caesar’s came the succession of the pontiffs in Rome.
    When Constantine left Rome he gave his seat to the pontiff.”

    ·  When Constantine left Rome, he went to Byzantium, and he formed a
    new capital and named it Constantinople (the present city of Istanbul in
    turkey sits on its ruins).

    Who is the Beast?

    ·  A worldwide religious power

    ·  Rev 13:8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him,
    whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from
    the foundation of the world.

    ·  Anyone whose name is not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life will worship the beast.

    · A religious power dominating civil powers

    ·  The most popular religious power on the face of the earth today is the Vatican.

    ·  It has a Diaspora of millions upon millions of people all over the world.

Rev 13:7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.

  • In 1985 President Ronald Reagan became the first President of the US to send an ambassador to the Vatican. Therefore, identifying the Vatican as not only as a church, but as a civil and political power as well.
  • Almost all major countries have an ambassador to the Vatican.
  • When it speaks, everybody stops and listens
  • Myer’s Genera; History, p.455 “Under him was very nearly made good the papal claim that all earthly sovereigns were vassals of the Roman Pontiff.”
  • The Roman Pontiff had sway over all of Europe, including all the kings and all the leaders of Europe.
  • We have an Angolan church today because the king was not granted permission from the pontiff of Rome to divorce his wife and remarry, so he broke away and formed the Anglican Church or the Church of England.

Myer’s General History, p.455 “Almost all the kings and princes of Europe swore fealty [allegiance] to him as their overlord. Rome was once more the mistress of the world.”

It is a blasphemous power

·  Rev 13:6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to
blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

·  Blasphemy is a man making himself God. Additionally, assuming any rights or power that belongs to God alone.

John 10:33 The Jews answered him [Jesus], saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God. [cf. 2 Thess. 2:4]

  • Pope Leo XIII “We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty.” This statement is in opposition to Luke 5:21, 1 Tim. 2:5, 1 John 1:9.

It is a religious power.

·  Rev 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great
things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty
and two months.

Ezek 4:6 …I have laid on you a day for each year. [42 months = 1260 years] If a day is given for a year, then 42 months would equal 1260 years (42 months X 30 days =1260 years).

  • The legally recognized supremacy of the Pope began in 538 AD when there went into effect a decree of Emperor Justinian, making the bishop of Rome head over all the churches, the definer of doctrine, and the corrector of heretics.
  • Therefore, the legally recognized reign of the famous legacy began in 538 AD [538+1260 = 1798]
  • From the History of the Christian Church vol3, p. 271 “Vigilius…ascended the papal chair (538 AD) under the military protection of Belisarius.”
  • This reign of power reigned for 1260 years, which is the same period of time known as the dark ages.
  • This power ruled until 1798
  • During this period, there was a war against the saints. Saints are innocent people—war (an armed force) against innocent, unarmed people is persecution.
  • This power persecuted God’s people for 1260 years because they refused to acknowledge the Pope and the Papacy. They were caught and burned at the stake as well as drowned and fed to wild animals. They ran into the caves and mountains but were smoked out and suffocated. However, the more they were persecuted, the more the church of God grew.

·  Rev 13:3 And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally
wounded, and his deadly wound was healed And all the world marveled and
followed the beast.

·  The end or pause of the supreme Papacy came in 1798.

· From The Encyclopedia Americana, 1941 edition “in 1798 he (Berthier—France)…made his entrance into Rome, abolished the papal government and established a secular one.” He took the Pope captive and sent him into exile in France, where he died.

The Pope was escorted into power by the government (Constantine). However, the same power that escorted him into power took him out of power.

He who rules with the sword (the civil power) will be killed by the sword. The wounded head represents this.

  • San Francisco Chronicle, Feb. 11, 1929 “The Roman question tonight was a thing of the past and the Vatican was at peace with Italy…In affixing the autographs to the memorable document healing the wound…extreme cordiality was displayed on both sides.”

    666 Mark of the Beast - Revelation 13:3
    The signing of the Lateran Treaty 1929

The deadly wound was healed. The Papacy was once again given back some land and some degree of authority, and restoring her to respect and power began.

[Rev. 13:3]… And all the world marveled and followed the beast.

    • An end-time worldwide prominence
    • The Papacy has gained worldwide influence, prestige, and prominence.
    • It is the most popular religious power on the face of the earth.

Rev 13:18 Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding
calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His
number is 666.

·  666 is not the mark of the beast. 666 is the number of the beasts. It represents a false religious system

·  In Babylon, there originated the six adjustable of 60 degrees or
60 minutes in an hour or 360 degrees or 360 days in the year. They had
the idea that they were 36 different heavenly bodies that they would
worship. Each heavenly body would be assigned a number from 1 to 36. The666 Mark of the Beast - Sun Worship
supreme God that they worshipped was the Sun. The supreme God to be
worshipped would have been the Sun. They would add +1+2+3 until the
number 36 was reached. That number would be 666. That number would be
assigned to the Supreme god, which was the Sun. The first of the week
was dedicated as his day to be worshipped (it was called sun’s day). The
Sun god in Babylon was called Belmar Duke. He has a chief priest who
goes by the name Pontifex Maximus (which means chief priest). This idea
was passed down to pagan Rome-Julius Caesar, who wore the title Pontifex

Maximus. This where the word pontiff originates. Therefore, the chief
priest would wear the number 666 as emulates around his neck made of
gold because the color of the Sun is gold which is why Babylon is
represented in the Scriptures by gold because this is a kingdom that
worships the sun.

666 Mark of the Beast - Babylonian Emulate
A Babylonian Emulate

·  They wore the golden emulates around the neck, which had the
sexagesimal, and they have six lines and six rows from one to 36 and
whatever direction you count each line, and each row would give you one
hundred eleven (111). If you multiply that by six, you will have six six
six in whichever direction you multiply.

·  This same practice was passed on from Babylon to Rome when the
Babylonian priests arrived in Rome. Rome adopted the practices of
Babylon, and when the powers were shifted from the Caesars to the bishop
of Rome, the title “pontiff” was adopted by him.

·  His crown, which Belgium gave him in 1871, was the expression by carros filiadio-which means my corrupt god.

What Precisely is the Mark of the Beast?

  • Considering the central issue is worship, the mark of the beast must be the sign of the Roman church’s authority.

Dan 7:25 “… think to change times and laws:

  • The Bible says the day begins at sunset; they say it begins at midnight.
  • They are changing laws that have to do with time, and there is only one law in the Ten Commands that concerns time—the Sabbath.

Letter, Oct. 28, 1895, from C.F. Thomas “Of course the Cah=tholic Church claims that the change was her act…and the act is a mark of her ecclesiastical power and authority in religious matters.”

  • This statement is regarding the change of the day of worship from Saturday to the first day of the week, Sunday (the Sun’s day).

Each day of the week was dedicated to a different heavenly body.

Monday—moon’s day

Wednesday—wooden’s day

Friday—afrigs day

Saturday—Saturn’s day

Bottom line: The Catholic church, on its own authority, adopted Sunday as the day of worship.

From the Catholic Record, Sept 1, 1923, “Sunday is our mark of authority…The church is above the Bible, and this transference of Sabbath observance is proof of that fact.”

  • The mark of the beast is not a vaccine, computer chip, medication, 666, the number 6 is man—just below God’s perfect number of 7.
  • The mark of the beast is Sunday worship

The seal of God is the Sabbath

At the end of time, there are only two choices:

·  The seal of God

·  The mark of the beast

Questions, comments, and concerns can be left below. You will receive a response

Blessings

 

 

 

Sin and Consequences

Recently, an article was published on this website entitled The Danger of Sin.
The article focused on sin mainly on a national, country level. This article focuses on sin and consequences on a more personal level.

That piece explains in detail what sin is, which is basically a transgression against God’s Law. Does God forgive us of our transgressions? Yes, He does. But is that the end of the story? Do we live happily ever after? Not necessarily.

The Consequences of Sin

It is crucial for us to realize that even though God forgives us of our sins, there may still be consequences as a result.

These consequences are the manifestation of one of God’s universal laws found in Scripture.

Gal 6:7

7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

We reap what we sow—even after forgiveness.

There is no more explicit example of this in the Scriptures than the account with King David and Bathsheba. This is a well-known Biblical account, but we will take a look for those who are unfamiliar.

The first king of Israel, Saul, was disobedient, and God removed him as king. Samuel the prophet announced this to Saul, 1 Sam 13:13-14

13 And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee: for now would the Lord have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever.

14 But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord commanded thee.

The man after God’s own heart was David. Therefore, David was highly Sin and Consequences - David, a man after God's own heartfavored by God.

However, along the way, David engaged in some unfavored behavior. 2 Sam 11:2-6

2 One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, (3) and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, “Isn’t this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” (4) Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her. (She had purified herself from her uncleanness.) Then she went back home. (5) The woman conceived and sent word to David, saying, “I am pregnant.” NIV

So David committed the sin of adultery, and Bathsheba conceived. However, that isn’t the end of the story.

2 Sam 11:6-14

6 So David sent this word to Joab: “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” And Joab Sin and Consequences - David and Bathshebiasent him to David. 7 When Uriah came to him, David asked him how Joab was, how the soldiers were and how the war was going. 8 Then David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and wash your feet.” So Uriah left the palace, and a gift from the king was sent after him. 9 But Uriah slept at the entrance to the palace with all his master’s servants and did not go down to his house.

David sent for Uriah, Bathsheba’s husband, to come home so that he would sleep with his wife so that he would think the child was his. However, he did not go home.

10 When David was told, “Uriah did not go home,” he asked him, “Haven’t you just come from a distance? Why didn’t you go home?”

11 Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are staying in tents, and my master Joab and my lord’s men are camped in the open fields. How could I go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As surely as you live, I will not do such a thing!”

Uriah was an honorable man with a conscience and would not enjoy the comforts of home while his fellow soldiers were out fighting in the fields.

12 Then David said to him, “Stay here one more day, and tomorrow I will send you back.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next. 13 At David’s invitation, he ate and drank with him, and David made him drunk. But in the evening Uriah went out to sleep on his mat among his master’s servants; he did not go home. NIV

David made one last futile attempt for Uriah to go home, even making him drunk. However, again, he did not go home. So what would David do now?

2 Sam 11:14-27

14 In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. 15 In it he wrote, “Put Uriah in the front line where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.”

16 So while Joab had the city under siege, he put Uriah at a place where he knew the strongest defenders were. 17 When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David’s army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died.

Unwittingly, Uriah delivered the letter containing his death sentence to Joab, and he was killed for being a loyal, conscientious soldier. David had now committed murder and had blood on his hands

18 Joab sent David a full account of the battle. 19 He instructed the messenger: “When you have finished giving the king this account of the battle, 20 the king’s anger may flare up, and he may ask you, ‘Why did you get so close to the city to fight? Didn’t you know they would shoot arrows from the wall? 21 Who killed Abimelech son of Jerub-Besheth? Didn’t a woman throw an upper millstone on him from the wall, so that he died in Thebez? Why did you get so close to the wall?’ If he asks you this, then say to him, ‘Also, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.'”

David’s objective was complete; Uriah was dead.

22 The messenger set out, and when he arrived, he told David everything Joab had sent him to say. 23 The messenger said to David, “The men overpowered us and came out against us in the open, but we drove them back to the entrance to the city gate. 24 Then the archers shot arrows at your servants from the wall, and some of the king’s men died. Moreover, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.”

David should have been devastated to have lost such a devoted man of valor. But…

25 David told the messenger, “Say this to Joab: ‘Don’t let this upset you; the sword devours one as well as another. Press the attack against the city and destroy it.’ Say this to encourage Joab.”

There was no remorse whatsoever. So just carry on—business as usual.

26 When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband was dead, she mourned for him. 27 After the time of mourning was over, David had her brought to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing David had done displeased the Lord.  NIV

Everything was done properly. Bathsheba mourned her husband for the proper amount of time, David did the right thing and married her, and he had a SON, how great. However, God was displeased. Let’s see what happens next.

2 Sam 12:1-6

The Lord sent Nathan to David. When he came to him, he said, “There were two men in a certain town, one rich and the other poor. 2 The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle, 3 but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.

4 “Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it for the one who had come to him.”

5 David burned with anger against the man and said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the man who did this deserves to die! 6 He must pay for that lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.” NIV

David did not realize that Nathan the prophet was portraying him, and his reaction confirmed his guilt and fate. Now what?

2 Sam 12:7-12

7 Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man! This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. 8 I gave your master’s house to you, and your master’s wives into your arms. I gave you the house of Israel and Judah.

Sin and Consequences - David & Nathan
The Lord rebuked David through the prophet Nathan.

And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more. 9 Why did you despise the word of the Lord by doing what is evil in his eyes? You struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own. You killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. 10 Now, therefore, the sword will never depart from your house, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your own.’

11 “This is what the Lord says: ‘Out of your own household I am going to bring calamity upon you. Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will lie with your wives in broad daylight. 12 You did it in secret, but I will do this thing in broad daylight before all Israel.'” NIV

God’s judgment against David was harsh. However, take a look at what follows.

Verse 13, Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.“NIV

After Nathan had snatched the cover off his sins, David confessed his sin. It is during this time that David wrote Psalm 51.

What’s next?

Nathan replied, “The Lord has taken away your sin. You are not going to die.

Nathan confirmed to David that the Lord had taken away his sin—he was forgiven, and his life was spared. So all is clear, right? Not exactly.

14 But because by doing this you have made the enemies of the Lord show utter contempt, the son born to you will die.” NIV

David’s sin dishonored God greatly. If he had not punished David, it could have made God look as though He approves evil. This sin of David’s would cause people to dishonor God. Punishment also discourages others from committing the same sin. The child did die (vs. 18).

Sin and Consequences - David's son dies
David and Bathsheba’s son dies

However, that was only the beginning. The prophecy in these verses came true. For the reason that David murdered Uriah and stole his wife,

(1) murder became a perpetual threat in his family (chap.13:26-30; 18:14,15; 1 Kings 2:23-25);

(2) his household revolted against him (15:13);

(3) his wives were given to another(his son) in public view (16:20-23).

Was it worth it? Probably if David had known the painful consequences of his sin, he might not have pursued the pleasures of the moment. This chastisement followed David for the rest of his life. You can read the details in the captioned Scriptures in parenthesis.

The Takeaway and Life Application

Repentance and forgiveness do not eliminate consequences. No one repented stronger than David did, yet he was severely punished for his sins.

Most individuals feel that when they repent and are forgiven of their transgression, that is the end of the story, and no more punishment should occur. However, as we see in this account in the Scriptures, that is not always the case.

We must heed the Scriptures. 1 Cor. 10:11-13

11 These things happened to them as examples for us. They were written down to warn us who live at the end of the age.

God bestowed the Scriptures upon us to show us examples to warn us of the

The Holy Bible
The Inspired Word of God

consequences.

12 If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall.

David: loved and anointed by God as King of Israel, a man “after God’s own heart” crumbled under temptation. The lesson: no one is immune to temptation so, we must never think that we are standing too strong to fall.

13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. NLT

Temptation has been around from the beginning. No temptation we face today is unique.

David was given “a way out.” He was told that Bathsheba was Uriah’s wife, but he did not take heed.

Yes, God forgives our transgressions. But we must remember that there may be a severe consequence that cannot be reversed.

We will reap what we sow, and sometimes more than we sow.

Amen.

You are welcome to leave any comments, questions, or concerns below.

Blessings!