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Mark Balicki

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  1. This is a prophetic and enlightening section for us concerning the end time part of the church that is not the church. Many share in the name of God but are not under the authority of Jesus Christ. Had they been under the authority of Jesus Christ they would have just suffered discipline, but their rebellion runs deeper and will occur God’s judgment and wrath in the end. Hopefully you will see why it happens, how it happens and what will happen by the end of this section. Division for our purposes refers to people who divide themselves from God’s Ministry that was introduced to us, first through Moses then through God’s Son Jesus Christ. When christians divide themselves from how God chose to make Himself known in the way he set it up for that to happen, we have moved ourselves from the will of God into disunity. Unity begins with God. One in unity with God, another in unity with them, and so forth, but the foundation must be of God. From unity with God in our case, is now through Jesus Christ, whom God has given all authority and put over everything as the basis for that foundation. In these types of divisions that move away from Jesus Christ & His Ministry, you will find wrong motives, you will find wrong doctrine, you will find fertile ground for every wicked work, and lastly it will find judgement. The ministry of Moses, which became the Ministry of Jesus Christ, both made God known to us as the same God, the same Spirit and the same judgement concerning life and death so that there could be a unity in the faith. The Apostle Paul in Ephesians 4:1-5 wrote, Therefore I, the prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, accepting one another in love, 3 diligently keeping the unity of the Spirit with the peace that binds us. 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope at your calling— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all. There are many people influenced by evil just like Lucifer was who encourages and brings about division. Lucifer manages to convince one third of the angels to divide from God through some kind of promise and was able to tempt them to follow him. In doing so, these angels’ judgement was sealed in an everlasting condemnation as an example for us to take heed lest we end up like them. Likewise, today there are divisions among us in the church and outside of the church because they too have been convinced and convince with some kind of promise rejecting the ministry of Lord with whatever that is will divide us from the authority of Jesus Christ our Lord to follow some other man centered authority. The judgement o disregarding what God gave us comes with a forewarning. It eventually becomes evident there are two paths when death and dying things comes in place of the life giving things, what is wrong instead of good and right. This kind of condemnation unless you repent and turn from it becomes its own jail while you are alive and possibly your sealed fate after you pass from this life to the next. The apostle Paul, who was a prisoner, kept unity through the Spirit and in the truth and was not kept apart from the good things and the right things found in Jesus Christ. Paul chose what was good and even though he received a martyr’s death, he passed from this life to the next united with Christ to receive his reward from God. Just as Jesus Christ the first-fruits of us who believe received his reward we too will receive a just reward from the Father by our faith in Him keeping His commands. Let’s turn to the book of Jude. This is the last book before Revelations at the end of the bible. It is an apocalyptic letter to a group of Christians to warn them and exhort them to contend for their faith and not to fall prey to the empty promises of things that are not right. Fall prey to things that can produce a judgement the leads to destruction. Open to the book of Jude, let’s start in verse 1, Jude, a slave of Jesus Christ and a brother of James: To those who are the called, loved by God the Father and kept by Jesus Christ. 2 May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. 3 Dear friends, although I was eager to write you about the salvation we share, I found it necessary to write and exhort you to contend for the faith that was delivered to the saints once for all. 4 For some men, who were designated for this judgment long ago, have come in by stealth; they are ungodly, turning the grace of our God into promiscuity and denying Jesus Christ, our only Master and Lord. 5 Now I want to remind you, though you know all these things: The Lord first saved a people out of Egypt and later destroyed those who did not believe; 6 and He has kept, with eternal chains in darkness for the judgment of the great day, the angels who did not keep their own position but deserted their proper dwelling. 7 In the same way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them committed sexual immorality and practiced perversions, just as angels did, and serve as an example by undergoing the punishment of eternal fire. 8 Nevertheless, these dreamers likewise defile their flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme glorious ones. 9 Yet Michael the archangel, when he was disputing with the Devil in a debate about Moses’ body, did not dare bring an abusive condemnation against him but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” 10 But these people blaspheme anything they don’t understand. What they know by instinct like unreasoning animals—they destroy themselves with these things. 11 Woe to them! For they have traveled in the way of Cain, have abandoned themselves to the error of Balaam for profit, and have perished in Korah’s rebellion. I want to stop here because I want to talk about Korah’s rebellion, but please take time to read the rest of this letter from Jude. Jude does go on and says in verse 19 These people create divisions and are unbelievers, not having the Spirit. Other translations use words to describe these kind of people as; sensual, worldly-minded, concerned about physical things, natural men. All these describe a people who, for the sake of our dialogue and in Jude’s warning, present themselves as Christians or something just as alluring. They behave using the same insights that unsaved people can conclude in achieving their own aims of acquiring what they want. In the case of the church the philosophies of the world are marketed under God’s name, but it is devoid of His Spirit, His approval. What makes these people dangerous is that they are not following the same Spirit, God’s Spirit. They are following some other spirit with some other kind of motivation and they can lead you into error, lead you into destruction! This brings us to an end time prophetic truth of something that will happen to those who organize following another spirit rebelling against the Ministry of Jesus Christ and leading others to do so. We will look at the first attempted rise of the first denomination and how God dealt with it. It was known as Korah’s rebellion which rose up against God’s ministry through Moses. A similar event will happen to those who have rebelled against the Ministry of God through Jesus Christ just before His return. To understand this is a more predictable sign pertaining to the end than worrying about what Putin might be up to in Russia or any other world leader. Let’s go to the book of numbers the 4th book of the Old Testament. Numbers 16 starting verse 1, Now Korah son of Izhar, son of Kohath, son of Levi, with Dathan and Abiram, sons of Eliab, and On son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, took 2 250 prominent Israelite men who were leaders of the community and representatives in the assembly, and they rebelled against Moses. 3 They came together against Moses and Aaron and told them, “You have gone too far! the entire community is holy, and the Lord is among them. Why then do you exalt yourselves above the Lord’s assembly?” Let’s stop, There are a few things we can take from this opening statement that pertain to division that leads to factions, church splits, and denomination formations. Korah was the only one of these 4 lead men who was actually called to the ministry. He was a Levite whose family line was put in charge of moving the most important parts of the articles of worship from one place to another as they camped and tended to the needs of the priests. But he was not a priest who was allowed into the most Holy of Holies. The priest was the one who covered the articles of worship and removed the veil before the Korath family line could move them. These other 3 men were of the community “the congregation” what we would compare as a metaphor to our church congregation. They weren’t part of the ministry administration, but were part of the group that it affected. We do not know how long these four men conspired between themselves, but most likely they talked about their rights, mismanagement of the current leaders and how they would do a better job than the current office holders of these positions as presumed Lawgiver and Priests in the way things were administered. I am sure they cloaked there animosity in the righteous indignation, because we are all holy, a people set apart, translated as we all can hear from God and can be God’s representatives. The spirit in their attitude was we don’t have to listen to you because we don’t like where you’re taking us. They must have managed a convincing argument because they were able to persuade taking 250 other people of power, position and maybe even wealth to join them with a false promise as we will see. Let’s continue. 4 When Moses heard this, he fell facedown. 5 Then he said to Korah and all his followers, “Tomorrow morning the Lord will reveal who belongs to Him, who is set apart, and the one He will let come near Him. He will let the one He chooses come near Him. 6 Korah, you and all your followers are to do this: take firepans, and tomorrow 7 place fire in them and put incense on them before the Lord. Then the man the Lord chooses will be the one who is set apart. It is you Levites who have gone too far!” 8 Moses also told Korah, “Now listen, Levites! 9 Isn’t it enough for you that the God of Israel has separated you from the Israelite community to bring you near to Himself, to perform the work at the Lord’s tabernacle, and to stand before the community to minister to them? 10 He has brought you near, and all your fellow Levites who are with you, but you are seeking the priesthood as well. 11 Therefore, it is you and all your followers who have conspired against the Lord! As for Aaron, who is he that you should complain about him?” 12 Moses sent for Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, but they said, “We will not come! 13 Is it not enough that you brought us up from a land flowing with milk and honey to kill us in the wilderness? Do you also have to appoint yourself as ruler over us? 14 Furthermore, you didn’t bring us to a land flowing with milk and honey or give us an inheritance of fields and vineyards. Will you gouge out the eyes of these men? We will not come!” Let’s stop, Two things I want to point out before we continue. Korah wanted something that wasn’t rightly given to him by the Lord, the priesthood, so he is attempting to take it. What happen to the 4th leader, On son of Peleth? Maybe he thought he would get his chance of becoming part of the ministry and just faded into the background of the drama. Or On smartened up and walked away from something that was about to become a disaster the scriptures don’t say. For Dathan and Abiram this was about pride and power which is shown through their arrogance by not responding to Moses’s request. Let’s continue 15 Then Moses became angry and said to the Lord, “Don’t respect their offering. I have not taken one donkey from them or mistreated a single one of them.” 16 So Moses told Korah, “You and all your followers are to appear before the Lord tomorrow—you, they, and Aaron. 17 Each of you is to take his firepan, place incense on it, and present his firepan before the Lord—250 firepans. You and Aaron are each to present your firepan also.” 18 Each man took his firepan, placed fire in it, put incense on it, and stood at the entrance to the tent of meeting along with Moses and Aaron. 19 After Korah assembled the whole community against them at the entrance to the tent of meeting, the glory of the Lord appeared to the whole community. 20 The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, 21 “Separate yourselves from this community so I may consume them instantly.” Let’s stop, Is it not amazing how someone who is wrong, someone who is now acting lawless can gather so many people against what is right? Why? It is again out of a false promise that there are better things ahead and it will begin here with them. How many politicians have told us that one! Let’s continue 22 But Moses and Aaron fell facedown and said, “God, God of the spirits of all flesh, when one man sins, will You vent Your wrath on the whole community?” 23 The Lord replied to Moses, 24 “Tell the community: Get away from the dwellings of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram.” 25 Moses got up and went to Dathan and Abiram, and the elders of Israel followed him. 26 He warned the community, “Get away now from the tents of these wicked men. Don’t touch anything that belongs to them, or you will be swept away because of all their sins.” 27 So they got away from the dwellings of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram. Meanwhile, Dathan and Abiram came out and stood at the entrance of their tents with their wives, children, and infants. Let’s stop, Just like Moses warned the community prior to this disaster to get away from the ones who led this rebellion. So, will the faithful remnant warn the rest of the believers and the church community to get away from the final judgements coming upon the apostate church. We read in Revelation 18:4 Then I heard another voice from heaven: Come out of her, my people, so that you will not share in her sins or receive any of her plagues. Now, God here in this scripture wouldn’t be talking about getting out of the general sinfulness of the wicked world or of the other types of non-christian religious belief systems that exist out there, if you are already living in these things by that time it may be too late for you. God’s people shouldn’t be living in any of those things to begin with. This call will come from heaven, it will be Jesus Christ warning through his faithful remnant to get away from the apostate Christian religious systems of this world. Jesus will be warning us to get away from everything He did not authorize as ministry to you. Let’s go on, 28 Then Moses said, “This is how you will know that the Lord sent me to do all these things and that it was not of my own will: 29 If these men die naturally as all people would, and suffer the fate of all, then the Lord has not sent me. 30 But if the Lord brings about something unprecedented, and the ground opens its mouth and swallows them along with all that belongs to them so that they go down alive into Sheol, then you will know that these men have despised the Lord.” 31 Just as he finished speaking all these words, the ground beneath them split open. 32 The earth opened its mouth and swallowed them and their households, all Korah’s people, and all their possessions. 33 They went down alive into Sheol with all that belonged to them. The earth closed over them, and they vanished from the assembly. 34 At their cries, all the people of Israel who were around them fled because they thought, “The earth may swallow us too!” Let’s stop, How did the uprising for these leaders of the rebellion end? The earth opened its mouth, swallowing these leaders and their possessions. It is a prophetic parallel to the ministries and denominations that were built out of the making of this world’s principles and philosophies, not God’s and built from the gathering of this world’s goods taken by defrauding others not by what God supplied. The innocent in Christ can be persuaded to give from their hearts, but the guilty in Christ take it under false pretense. If these ministers, ministries and denominations didn’t say their activities came from God and were authorized by Him, they would not incur the same judgement. But since they say this is all done in God’s name, saying they are acting on His behalf, He will have to be the one who ultimately settles the accounts. This is the same God who has numbered the hairs on your head, that accountant. What God did not provide will belong to this world. And the leaders and their ministries shall go the way of death, where the wicked of this world will go. Their money and possessions will be taken and so will their lives in immorality to judgement as will all those who depose God’s activities and ministers from His ministry. Let’s continue, 35 Fire also came out from the Lord and consumed the 250 men who were presenting the incense. Let’s stop, This one sentence says many things about those who were convinced to follow this wrong belief. First, fire when pertaining to God always represents judgement. Here we see God’s judgement to destroy these men’s lives, the fire literally consumed them. We can also see the opposite of God’s judgement over those he approves of like the disciples of Jesus on the day of Pentecost. In Acts 2:3 it says, And tongues, like flames of fire that were divided, appeared to them and rested on each one of them. Then they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different languages, as the Spirit gave them ability for speech. We see here fire represents judgement, in approval resting on right minded individuals and not destroying. The second thing I want you to notice is they are asked to appear with incense on their fire pans. Incense, in reference to God, refers to knowledge, what we know. What these men knew wasn’t right and God’s judgement destroyed them. This too is prophetic, in the end the deceptions will grow worse and many of those who believed will grow numb to the truth, it will become meaningless because of the wrong stuff they have taken in around them. They will be sick with ungodliness, and because of it many won’t be able to see their own error and escape the trouble of the destruction that is coming upon this world until it’s too late. Just know, the things we believe if they are built on anything but the Ministry of Jesus Christ it will be full of error, especially in the last hour. This error will bring judgement, not only to its teachers, but to their followers because their thinking is not right and they are no longer hearing from the Spirit that would convict them and lead them into the truth. These are those who are not right in their thinking and will not repent (that means change). Their lives will be consumed and destroyed. The Apostle Paul writes it like this in 1 Corinthians 3 11 For no one can lay any other foundation than what has been laid down. That foundation is Jesus Christ. 12 If anyone builds on that foundation with gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay, or straw, 13 each one’s work will become obvious, for the day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire; the fire will test the quality of each one’s work. 14 If anyone’s work that he has built survives, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned up, it will be lost, but he will be saved; yet it will be like an escape through fire. Let’s continue, 36 Then the Lord spoke to Moses: 37 “Tell Eleazar son of Aaron the priest to remove the firepans from the burning debris, because they are holy, and scatter the fire far away. 38 As for the firepans of those who sinned at the cost of their own lives, make them into hammered sheets as plating for the altar, for they presented them before the Lord, and the firepans are holy. They will be a sign to the Israelites.” Let’s stop, A sign of what? That the purpose of ministry is holy as the firepans represent the vehicle of ministry in that we carry fire (making God’s judgements known) and incense (revealing His knowledge making Him known). Displaying obedience as one carrying them acknowledges both are right. The motivation of these men wanting to minister was wrong and their thinking on things were wrong, they were of the wrong spirit. Jesus Christ made it possible for us to carry out God’s ministry in this world. He provided us the ability to do a good job if we will follow Him and obey Him. Our fate doesn’t have to end up like these who lost their lives. Let’s continue, 39 So Eleazar the priest took the bronze firepans that those who were burned had presented, and they were hammered into plating for the altar, 40 just as the Lord commanded him through Moses. It was to be a reminder for the Israelites that no unauthorized person outside the lineage of Aaron should approach to offer incense before the Lord and become like Korah and his followers. 41 The next day the entire Israelite community complained about Moses and Aaron, saying, “You have killed the Lord’s people!” 42 When the community assembled against them, Moses and Aaron turned toward the tent of meeting, and suddenly the cloud covered it, and the Lord’s glory appeared. 43 Moses and Aaron went to the front of the tent of meeting, 44 and the Lord said to Moses, 45 “Get away from this community so that I may consume them instantly.” But they fell facedown. 46 Then Moses told Aaron, “Take your firepan, place fire from the altar in it, and add incense. Go quickly to the community and make atonement for them, because wrath has come from the Lord; the plague has begun.” 47 So Aaron took his firepan as Moses had ordered, ran into the middle of the assembly, and saw that the plague had begun among the people. After he added incense, he made atonement for the people. 48 He stood between the dead and the living, and the plague was halted. 49 But those who died from the plague numbered 14,700, in addition to those who died because of the Korah incident. 50 Aaron then returned to Moses at the entrance to the tent of meeting, since the plague had been halted. Let’s stop and look at this closer. The ringleaders are gone, the world swallowed them up. The representatives that were convinced by the ringleaders have been judged and their lives destroyed. Now these 250 representatives that were destroyed were not just nobodies in their community. They were people who live among the ordinary folk. They were chosen and trusted to represent them, but now they are gone and the spotlight is on Moses and Aaron. The community that have been deceived are very upset, but they are upset with the wrong people. Moses and Aaron were only representatives chosen by God to fulfill God’s purpose of ministry. What we see here is an all out rebellion against God by His own people. God was ready to judge and destroy all of them who were part of this rebellion. But what happens, the godly intervene for the lives of the ungodly. Moses understood something about God. He sent Aaron, God’s authorized representative to go amongst the people with his fire pan. And what was it? Incense, this is prophetic which represents the knowledge and judgement of God something resembling this scenario that will play out again in the end time. Jesus Christ will send forth His ministers to make God’s knowledge and judgement known among God’s people who are in rebellion. Notice that this action comes through the proper appointed minister through the ministry God assigned. Aaron wasn’t better than any of them, but he was the one assigned to make atonement for the people’s sin. Moses must have believed God would have mercy if those who were called to serve God in ministry did the right thing. The Apostle Paul wrote about this kind of aroma in 2 Corinthians 2:14-17 14 But thanks be to God, who always puts us on display] in Christ and through us spreads the aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.15 For to God we are the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. 16 To some we are an aroma of death leading to death, but to others, an aroma of life leading to life. And who is competent for this? 17 For we are not like the many who market God’s message for profit. On the contrary, we speak with sincerity in Christ, as from God and before God. All of this came at a heavy cost because of this deception, 14,700 people died along with the others that had perish directly in the rebellion, because they had been deceived. What would this look like today if God’s judgement is invoked? What will it look like soon at the pace God’s people are sliding into rebellion and lawlessness? Will it look like Israel and Judah where only a remnant of the faithful were saved? Could it be as high as 50% in referencing the parable Jesus told us about the 10 virgins. Five were prepared and five were not. You now have an idea what will happen to those who created ministry apart from Jesus Christ and gather people to themselves. You also now know of the judgement of those who follow man devised ideas of ministry trying to set themselves up as a new authority. In the next part we will look at some indicators that will help you be able to tell if a church or ministry is plugged into the vine. Jesus said, “Just as a branch is unable to produce fruit by itself unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me.” Do not expect to receive knowledge from something not remaining in Christ. It is not only separated from its source of life, but the error that comes from it may separate you from Jesus Christ your source of life and godliness. Let me continue with the words of Jesus from this parable found the gospel of John chapter 15, Jesus speaking, “I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me. If anyone does not remain in Me, he is thrown aside like a branch and he withers. They gather them, throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this: that you produce much fruit and prove to be My disciples. In the next part we will also look at what the ministry of Jesus Christ looks like by what it intended to accomplish. Who are the ministers and the workers of the new covenant and how does it reflect a oneness with us today in our faith in God as it through Moses with the Priest and Levites of the old administration? Part 4 Is called, “the Ministry of Jesus Christ”.
  2. If you don’t understand the purpose of ministry everything else in your mind concerning it will be in the abstract. And this is where the devil would like us to remain because he can persist there in presenting to you all sorts of things that are not genuine that are not true. Let’s first look at how worldly governments operate. In Canada, Great Britain and in a few other countries you have what is called governmental ministries. For instance, in Canada our companion to the north, if you live in the U.S., you have the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Foreign affairs. A minister is selected for each of these ministries. Then that minister builds a support base beneath him to carry out the will and wishes of the government. In the 20th century most nations moved away from this vocabulary in describing these functions of their government. Here in the United States we call them departments. Instead of ministers we call them secretaries which are the head of these departments. In both instances they are established and picked by a ruling governmental party to carry out the ruling party’s will. The whole purpose of an earthly government ministerial outreach is aiding in setting the parameters in which the governed can live out their lives responsibly in a just orderly fashion. In theory, so that unity can be achieved among their citizens because they all will be equipped with what they need to know and what is expected of them. This is done through rules and regulations govern by laws. I realize this has not worked really well because men can be corrupted. The government and these ministries or as we call them here departments can become corrupted as well. What do you think are a couple of things that come to mind when you think of the establishment of these ministries or departments among the citizenry of a country? Here are two main things that come to my mind. The first is an understanding that the ruling party has something that they want to happen. And for that something to happen, it must be worked out so the people can be equipped with the knowledge so it can be accomplished among them. Such as we find in health care, the legal system, or in relations with other countries an established set of rules or laws are set in place in dealing with these aspects of governing people and nations. If speaking of Canada, the ministry of health, the ministry of Justice, and the ministry of foreign affairs as examples. I think next the government’s ruling party decides if what is to be made known is simple in concept that a decree or law can satisfy the need of accomplishing the goal? or will it be more complex? If it is going to be complex then a ministry or a department is created develop the knowledge and action plans that can be established that reflects the government wishes. A department is born working through many avenues to carry out the will of ruling government to accomplish its goals. This becomes the vehicle in which the government can carry out its needs, ideas and enforcement in a specific area that governs its people. Like health care, or it’s legal system or how it will relate to other countries. God’s kingdom and God himself who is incorruptible, which is hard to imagine a government not being so, but God’s ways that govern life is perfect. It is men who can become corruptible through sin that makes the path to God faulty. God has made known to us His government, His will, His knowledge through two ministries He established that encompasses everything else God desired to be known. First was His appointment of Moses to administer God’s “will” among a group people who were set apart as a nation of His own possession. This dating back to Abraham the first official citizen of this nation that God separated out from the peoples of the earth. Through Abraham Israel became a nation that God led and planned to embody His nature and knowledge of Himself within it. How? by the way the people were governed to live through the ministry of God brought through His servant Moses to establish what was pleasing and right in this world He created. And this ministry of laws, tabernacle and priests were created to point them in the right direction. The second time is through His son Jesus Christ, who didn’t change what God was making known to us, but Jesus would administer this knowledge in a better way for the whole world to be able to understand it and be governed by it. It would be presented as a government over all nations, tongues and tribes and those who would respond to God by faith in Jesus Christ would become part of this kingdom. Both ministries presented the same thing, the will and knowledge of God that leads to the understanding of the life you were given, but the ministries are different in this way. The ministry under Moses was carried out through the flesh in our human strength. God’s “will” was made known to the people it governed through the laws that God established through Moses. These laws carried out through our fleshly nature was to represent an image of a deeper spiritual understanding of who God is. An understanding that could be obtained by faith through attempting to obey those laws through the flesh. Simply, God whom they could not see could be understood by what was put in place to govern them by what they could see. This understanding if taken by faith could help them choose what was right. Even though the laws were perfect they produce death among them because of their human weakness and susceptibility to sin. They simply did not have the power within themselves to keep spiritual precepts. The history of this time was captured for us in the scriptures for our review. This time has made known to us in retrospect the knowledge and the nature of God through the ministry of Moses to the Jewish nation and their response to it giving us a deeper understanding of who God is and what He desires. This includes the judgement, pain and suffering that would come from rejecting God and His ways, but also the rewards of faith by those who embraced it. The second ministry of Jesus Christ didn’t come because of a change in the will and knowledge of God. It came with a difference of how God would administer this knowledge of His will through another ministry. Jesus Christ being made the head of this ministry reintroduces us to the same God, as our father, creator, lawgiver and Lord, just like Moses had through his ministry. What the first ministry was unable to do because it failed in its mission because of sin being able to corrupt men. God provided a better way through Jesus who overcome sin that caused us to disobey and rebel against the authority of God. The first ministry wasn’t wrong, but it completed its work by showing us our need for this second one. God gave us this way through Jesus Christ alone. If we will come to God in repentance of our disobedience and our willingness to accept what Jesus did for us it puts us in right standing with God. Then our life will be empowered through the help of God’s Holy Spirit and by His grace if we are willing. Jesus said out of His ministry, we would be given the Holy Spirit to help those who believed and desire to obey and know the truth to grow and walk in it. Therefore, we would be empowered to recognize what is true enabling us to exist in peace in a oneness with God out of our worship. This would be available to all because it is spiritual discerned and grasped. The middle man was taken out of the way and we can have direct access to God. This is our faith and makes the knowledge of God available to us so we can have life as Jesus said, “more abundantly”. But if we shrink back and willing unrepentantly embrace sin, turning our back in rebellion from this willingness to follow Jesus. Just like through the ministry of Moses, we will find ourselves on the receiving end of His judgment which brings death not life. Using what we have learned to this point I want to put something that is happening even today in perspective by going back to the analogy of earthly governments and its ministries. What if in a country for example, of individuals or a group of individuals decided they didn’t agree with the way the country’s government took care of housing for its citizens? These people did not agree with the way the Ministry of Housing was running things. So, they decided they would establish their own ministry of housing within the country. It would become what they thought would be best for the citizenry and more than likely what they deem best for themselves. The individual or individuals who headed this up would find people to help run this ministry as they decided on what they thought was important. And in order to maintain unity they would establish their own sets of rules and laws that would govern their organization. Just like the government’s ministry, they would take money from people for housing permits. They would inspect things based on their own building codes in considering what they thought was acceptable or unacceptable. Or maybe there would be no building codes at all. They would decide what they thought best when encountering new things, when necessary, making arbitrary decisions based on need or restraint to keep things running smoothly. They would even make themselves look like the government using the same emblems and letter head. They would also make known their services and market them so they can gather people who would be loyal or at least partial to them. This way those who they were able to capture would be able to provide a need for their existence based on the usefulness and now a growing authority over the people they serve. Ok, how long would you think something like this would last in operation in opposition to the government’s authentic authority through its own ministry? It wouldn’t! And all the buildings built under the permits by the building codes through the inspections done by this lawless entity would be unacceptable. The reason, we don’t see this kind of behavior in countries, unless within a country there is an overthrow of government taking place, is because this isn’t acceptable behavior and if their citizens try to proceed in doing these things consequences will take place and they won’t be favorable ones. But in God’s kingdom this is exactly what takes place x10, x100, x1000, but God is patient and merciful seeking and waiting upon those who will respond to Him so that they can be saved. All these ministries and denominations who have set themselves up under a perceived authority of God when they did not have it are also going to suffer consequences. In the next part we are going to look at the first real opposition party trying to establish a ministry contrary to what God has established. We will discuss the heart behind this kind of rebellion and the consequences this rebellion faced. It is important to see because prophetically this speaks to how God will deal with these types of ministries set up in God’s name but are not authorized by Him. And how it will all come to a conclusion in the future before Jesus’s return. I called this next part “The Division”
  3. I just found this. What a great illustration the Lord gave you of this truth.
  4. THE UNAVOIDABLE COMING TROUBLE In this teaching, we will look at the scriptures that deal with the apostate church and an event that will happen before Jesus’s return. This event will be in concurrence to the coming of the end time antichrist. What happens may be surprising to you because it will use elements of what we would think of as the church to accomplish this. You also may be very surprised as a believer, that you may be part of a church or ministry that Jesus Christ is not the head of, and that it will help give way to this end time event that will come to pass. In 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 The apostle Paul says, Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to Him: We ask you, brothers, 2 not to be easily upset in mind or troubled, either by a spirit or by a message or by a letter as if from us, alleging that the Day of the Lord has come. 3 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way. For that day will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction. In some bible translations, they replace the word “apostasy” with the words “a great falling away from the faith”. The word apostasy really means a rebellion, in this case against Christ. And this rebellion will come through those within the church. It will be through self-identified Christians and Christian institutions (denominational and non-denominational) that you thought you could trust. But they have been persuaded to rebel against Jesus Christ and His ministry that he desired to be among us. When I say ministry, we are talking about the structure in which the knowledge of God was meant to pass through. It is God’s way of administrating through His Spirit to bring about an understanding of who He is, what He can do and what He desires from us. It is an exchange in which we can live this life we were given through the power of God who is the creator in an illumination of life itself. Makes sense, right? But when we weaken our dependency on God’s way of doing that, or break away from our Lord altogether, it is our sin then that interrupts the stream of the Spirit in which through all things flow. All the things that were meant to help us grow in knowledge and understanding of God. When it stops, we spiritually suffer from the sins God wanted us to avoid bringing death and destruction into our lives. When there is an absence of God’s influence of power to keep us, change us, and guide us, the trouble our sin causes continues to increase to some point in the future when it causes a big world trouble. It will be the kind of trouble that will have grown throwing the whole world into a great tribulation. Jesus said, it would be unlike anything that has ever happen. What has held it back until now is God’s mercy. It is the mercy that He has had on those who truly believed and those who would come to believe in Jesus, because God loves what He has created. But a day will come as it did in Noah’s day, that wickedness will have corrupted humanity to the point that humanity becomes unredeemable because of sin. Noah and His family was all God could save. Noah was all he could find that would listen. Likewise, it will be the same for the remnant who will be saved through this time in the last days. Even after lots of warnings the rest who thought they knew God and the others who didn’t think they needed to know God will come to know the Lord’s judgement. As a believer, we need God’s knowledge, we need the Spirit’s power, we need Jesus Christ’s guidance which God provided that flow through the ministries He gave to humanity, first through Moses and today to us through Jesus Christ. But many of those who once called on the name of the Lord will quit listening and following Jesus Christ, becoming deceived and deceiving others to the point of their own destruction. Just as it happened in Noah’s day, it happened in Moses day, it has happened over and over again to the Jewish nation to serve as a warning. A warning to us that a day like it will come upon all the people of this world who were called upon to hear the word of the Lord, the Jew, gentile, and believer. The destruction will come to those who have chosen to disobey and live in an ungodly lifestyle that they will not repent from. These apostate individuals and Christian organizations will not see it as having broken away from anything or being a problem to anyone because their hearts will be filled with pride. Pride being the self will to continue in what they want. They will be deceived believing they are doing God a service. They will see it as making things better because the standards of life will have been moved so low. Sin through their unrepented disobedience will have seared their conscience so there will be no need for truth to get in the way of acceptance of beliefs, which will look more and more like what the world believes. The remnant of believers holding to God’s standards for life will be thought of as unloving and judgmental and as time passes, labeled as haters and troublemakers and worse. This is how they treated the prophets. This is how they will view you. It doesn’t mean all the believers within these entities are among the misled or rebellious Christians, yet. But by the time all the corruption, stumbling blocks and road blocks have entangled them in sin, keeping them from the truth, the frustration they will experience can end up in a lack of desire to continue in following Jesus Christ. They will worship him with their lips, but their hearts will not be near God, simply because they will not know Him. The apathy that once was maybe an acquaintance at times, relaxing in it to do what is wrong will now become a familiar friend taking them everywhere else, but to where Jesus is. Let that not be us for all that it has cost for God to save us and keep us by embodying Himself in our human to reach us. As things grow darker we will all face being tempted to take our eyes off Jesus and be stopped at one of these stumbling blocks placed to corrupt our faith. The worst part is many of these deceptive road blocks will come from within the church from people who have been deceived that are always learning, but unable to come to the truth that can save them and others. It is like leading people to a door of hope, but not having the key to open it. Jesus is the one who said he would give the keys of the kingdom to those who built their lives on Him. People who call themselves Christians in general are becoming more and more wicked and unrepentant, living ungodly lives because what is being taught and shared no longer comes from God to convict and persuaded them. It is built on something else, man’s ideas and inventions. Jesus in Matthew 7:26 & 27, refers to this as the man who built his house on the sand. When the trouble came what he built to live in came crashing down. We will come to understand before we are finished how even once faithful believers may become misled and entrenched in deception. All who have fallen into the trap, if they do not repent will find themselves suffering under the weight of the judgments that will come upon the lawless in these last days. As the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 3:15 says, “you will be saved, but only as one escaping through a fire.” It reminds me of a time I was trapped in a fire once. Everything was burning up all around me and I too just manage to escape with my life! It was myself and two other friends that poured gasoline all over a structure we were allowed to burn down. Before we knew it the gasoline we were so liberally pouring all over, once lit, became an engulfing inferno that we were standing inside of looking for a way out. Seeing our way out, we exited quickly, but on my way out I stepped on a big rusty barn nail that went through my boot right into the bone of my heal. I then spent over a good week nursing that injury which kept me from walking normal for a couple weeks. I will tell you that experience was scary. But when I think of those living in the end it will be much more scarier because instead of an old farm building burning down that was part of a controlled burn, this will be the complexity of someone’s life and the things connected to it that they themselves built. What remains will testify if it was either done with God or without God, and He alone will be the judge. This will not be the first time in history that this has happened. We see that in other times and in other ways God’s judgement on rebels and rebellions have come to pass, but at the same time, God has preserved his remnant and has brought & taught them through it. Just like the Israelites rebelled against the ministry God brought through Moses, (which we will learn about in part 3) the world, and more precisely the Christians will likewise rebel against the ministry God has given us through Jesus Christ. LOOK INTO THE FUTURE When we think about this future event and the thought of the great tribulation, the great trouble that will come because of this rebellion, we have to look at some similar events. These are accumulative events which have piled up over a long period of time, but the patterns of rebelling against God, God’s judgement and the death and destruction that the disobedient bring upon themselves are consistent, pointing to a consistent purposeful God in all He has created. God uses these events to teach us what this worldwide, end of days time will look like and how it becomes what it is. To see this, we have to look to God’s own people He had separated out from among the nations whom He chose to make Himself and His ways known that is the Jewish nation. We have the scriptures to look at the persistent rebellion that kept occurring over a long period of time that finally brought the Jewish people to a place of judgement. One time the destruction of their nation came through the king of Babylon. Before that Egypt and if God had not step in to save them through Moses it is possible they could have been destroyed, but God was at work. That particular event of the Exodus shows us God can save us, but if we persist in rebellion He will allow us to reap the fruit of it. The lawlessness of His chosen people towards God eventually brought the kings of lawlessness of this world to their doorstep. In the course of history this pattern has repeated itself many times, but it hasn’t been the end for the Jewish people. But each time they never fully recovered or separated themselves from the influences of the world and return wholeheartedly to God. Instead, they along with many of God’s other chosen people including the believers in God in Christ have join the world through the worldly mindset that Babylon represents becoming one with her in heart. Hiding behind religion to mask their own pleasures of sin. This enticement is fueled also by man’s sinful desire to divide and dominate one another for one’s own pleasure, being at the core of this thing. Instead of finding pleasure in the salvation we received from Jesus Christ, we seek to dominate others for our own pleasure, our own self-interests, simply for our own wants and needs. Unless God had sent His son Jesus Christ, Israel’s fate would have been permanently sealed for destruction along with our own. Wickedness left unchecked never progresses to a state of something better. Ask Noah and his family, survivors of this sinful disease that had destroyed the rest of humanity during his time. God foreknew the need of a savior to save us from ourselves and our thinking which has the ability to produce death within us and rebellion against the one who made us. He is the only one who can help us live this life that was created out of Him. This has been His plan from the beginning to make that known to us. THE FLIP SIDE The flip side of this for us is that in the end those who have been influenced by the spirit of Babylon will depart from the faith to follow deceiving spirits becoming one with them until she has made a path for the anti-Christ to appear. Lawlessness on a world-wide scale will demand its king once again, who will be thee anti-Christ a puppet of the devil. And so, you have her, Babylon the great, the mother of all harlots, the abominations of the earth that will help bring about this end time judgement. And she will ride on the political tides of the powers of this world until God’s judgement deals out her fate. In referencing God in one of His commands said, “Do not misuse the name of the LORD your God, because the LORD will not leave anyone unpunished who misuses His name.” Who is it the misuses His name, she is the apostate Christian religious system the rebellious church and she will not go unpunished. Let’s look at Hebrews 12: 25-29 Make sure that you do not reject the One who speaks. For if they did not escape when they rejected Him who warned them on earth, even less will we if we turn away from Him who warns us from heaven. His voice shook the earth at that time, but now He has promised, yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also heaven. This expression, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of what can be shaken—that is, created things—so that what is not shaken might remain. Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom (a government) that cannot be shaken, let us hold on to grace. By it, we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. YOU RECEIVED A GOVERNMENT Folks, you DID receive a government if you yielded yourself to and accepted Jesus Christ for the pardon of your sins and His authority as Lord. You are now part of a kingdom that even though we don’t presently live physically in it, exactly like any other government it has patterns and laws, these are not only physical manifested, but are spiritually known and preserved. Speaking of Jesus, Isaiah the prophet said, “For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.” The responsibility of this government has been placed upon Jesus. The triune God our Creator will not show kindness to a rebellious people who are misleading the saints and teaching others its O.K. to be rebellious towards Jesus our Lord. And God will also not show kindness to those who have presented the road blocks that have kept the saints and the lost from finding salvation in Him. This shaking away what was “created” in the scriptures we just read, means it came from the invention of man, man-made, not from God. This includes political and spiritual corrupt ideas and inventions, education contrary to God, ungodly cultural and societal influences. All the things that have been made and allowed to stand as idols and stumbling blocks keeping humanity from knowing our God. All these things will be separated out and all people will know Jesus’s government before the end. The bible records that in the end, ever knee will bow and every tongue will confess this, that is Jesus as Lord. But for now, today, Christ’s kingdom exists within the believer, so I should say to us who are part of it, we are being separated from what is wrong, we are being called out of the world. It is a process that is at work in a believer who is following Jesus Christ. The “yet once more” mentioned here comes from the book of Haggai. The author of Hebrews used it to refer to a future shaking that will happen so that the things that are glorious will be revealed. What is wrong will be shaken away from what is right. The things that will appear will have come through Jesus Christ. This is bride bringing God glory to the world by their worship in making him known. This is the bride Jesus returns for. Why must all this happen? So those who have made the decision to follow Christ can see and have an opportunity to repent and even in that last hour serve God acceptably with reverence and awe and be His readied bride at the time of His return. Things will not go on forever as they always have, there will be a revealing to the whole world of what is right and what is wrong. All will be given one last opportunity to escape the final judgement if they desire too with God’s help. I want to say; this judgement is different from God’s wrath that will be poured out on those whose names are not written in the Lamb’s book of Life. This judgment is with hope that the people of God will turn from their wicked ways to Christ and that others who never knew God will see all of this too, and turn to the only one who can save them, Jesus At the end of the scriptures we just read in Hebrews the writer referred to God as a consuming fire. Fire in light of the knowledge of God is metaphoric always means a type of judgement that already exist or judging that is being made. You cannot have love without the attribute of justice. God is love. So, whatever is not burned up by His judgement and remains is acceptable, but whatever is burned up and destroyed because it is wrong and cannot exist in his presence, it is unacceptable. (If you want to know more about fire being a type of God’s judgement or an act judging just do a quick bible search of the word usage.) What we are going to cover in this series is the following: What is ministry? We will look into the rise of the first denomination and how God dealt with it. This is prophetic in how God has dealt with ministries that are not His and in the future how He will deal with the denominations and ministries that has deceived His people and abused & murdered his saints. We will look at how God will save Jesus’s bride in the midst of the great tribulation the great trouble that is going to come upon the whole earth. The 5 foolish virgins in Jesus’s parable of the 10 virgins are the ones who will not make it because they will not have been prepared. And lastly, we will share a summary of indicators to see if the ministry of Jesus Christ is present among you. We will also look at when it is not and how to deal with this problem. 10 virgins showed up to wait together for the bridegroom. So, they were all together but only 5 were wise enough having prepared themselves to meet the groom. I look forward to have you join us in part 2 What is Ministry? Everything has meaning and knowing what that something means helps to lay and maintain a proper foundation in which to build on.
  5. Marriage, divorce, remarriage is happening all around us to the point that now the culture is rapidly dismissing the value of marriage and embracing cohabitation. Young and old are reasoning the aspects of marriage is meaningless and outdated so why marry. Most of us living today have directly or indirectly seen and or felt the pain of two people behaving badly in a marriage, engaged, after a divorce or repeating it all over again when they remarry. It has created a generation that has noticed and wants the freedom of not being burdened with this whole concept. This isn’t the whole reason; people are acting wickedly in not wanting marriage as a cumbersome formality because it gets in the way of their unchecked desires. The way a great majority of societies all around the world are seeking a man & woman union today in what we are trying to get out of them for ourselves is evil. Society’s behavior puts a mask over all of it and calls it love and when things don’t work out, then we despise or hate the other person. After we mined the wealth of emotion, energy, flesh, love, the essence of a person’s being to see what they might have for our own gratification, when it’s gone, so is the marriage. Is marriage wrong? Or is our own idea of what marriage is…wrong? God is the one who brought forth this creation we live in and to know what is right it must be defined through him. What does God have to do with it? Everything! To understand marriage, we must understand God’s purpose behind it. If you listen to the voices of the world around you and believe the things your friends, family and culture are telling you, your marriage will lose meaning because everything has a purpose and marriage is one of them. When something is used for the right purpose, there is fulfillment. Marriage is a plan and purpose of God, without understanding of what that is, what are you really working on or working towards? Just momentary pleasures, that disappear after they get old? Or the vision of sugar plums that dance in your head to something you objectify? To have real intimacy in marriage you must have an intimacy with the one who created it, God. No other lie out there will help you grow to enjoy your marriage. Many of the things the world has to offer and even many of the marriage seminars are placebos of an imaginary sort, that leaves you feeling discouraged when the new catalyst is introduced but doesn’t give you the fix you’re seeking. This lack of understanding is just one of many conditions of man in the state of sin that has made a mess of this gift from God to us. In fact, we will read a little later that God set high standards on marriage that it left his disciples stunned by what Jesus said concerning it. Matthew 19:10-12 says, His disciples said to Him, “If the relationship of a man with his wife is like this, it’s better not to marry!” But He told them, “Not everyone can accept this saying, but only those it has been given to. For there are eunuchs who were born that way from their mother’s womb, there are eunuchs who were made by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves that way because of the Kingdom of heaven. Let anyone accept this who can.” A eunuch is someone who abstains from marriage and that type of man & woman relationship altogether. Jesus was making the point that God places high standards on marriage and those who understand that may wish to avoid what they perceive to be something laden with difficulties. They may wish to devote themselves in singleness to the Lord. A oneness in devotion to the Lord can be easier than in a marriage when it takes two people bound together devoting themselves to it and to God. He didn’t say singleness was better only that marriage is harder. Mostly, we don’t think about it being harder at the time because our mind is only thinking about the fleshly part of the benefits. Even if you are a believer you may coat it in a spiritual like frosting on a cake, but it’s most likely the fleshly benefits you’re enticed by just like everyone else of the human race. The only thing you must understand is it’s really the other way around. The fleshly benefits are like the icing on a cake so I hope you like the cake, because it is the spiritual that brings meaning and growth in the relationship. The concept of marriage came from God with the intent of one man and one woman to be joined together in a lifetime commitment to accomplish a work of God in this world. Not only a work but a fulfilling work that can make you happy as you do it. Through this special union God makes available His help (grace) to embrace this knowledge that comes from him to learn about the purposes the two-people entered into. This knowledge comes as they seek God through their experiences that they will share together and time spent in their devotion not only as a couple but also as individuals to the Lord. It’s God’s grace that makes the two of them become one in their fruitfulness to multiply what is good among them. Only as they grow in their knowledge & devotion to God that life and meaning can enter a marriage. If you don’t have that you have a lot of confusion, where envying (desiring what you don’t have) and strife (selfish ambition) which within these two things you have every kind of evil work. Simply said, every type of wrong thing can happen and thrive, without God’s help. Marriage is a manifold gift from God (many gifts) for those following God who desire to enter it and desire to keep it. Non-believers but specially believers who love God have the desire to give love and want to have love reciprocated in an intimate exclusiveness that we see in marriage resembling the marriage like structure they have with God. The merging of the two into one. This desire was stamped on our souls by God for himself in creation, but the corrupted man not submitted to God works to destroy that reflection of God imprinted on us. We must not also forget our adversary the deceiver, tempter and accuser, the devil, who works in those 3 ways wanting to destroy anything and everything that provides a picture of the image and knowledge of God in us. The devil’s work is all around us encouraging us to sin. There is so much information out on the internet concerning the subject of marriage, divorce and remarriage. There are many views for many reasons written on it. Some justify what we want to hear, some written to condemn no matter what state we might find ourselves in, but most of the information leaves a lot of confusion because they go beyond the scope of what we find in the scriptures. I say, “the scriptures” because if you desire to know and what God created marriage for you have to look in the Bible, which holds inspired words & knowledge of God our creator. It is found through an assortment of people and circumstances gathered together to help understand God and what he desires from us so we can live the life he has given and find satisfaction, real pleasure and peace. What I’m about to say I hope will be helpful in bringing more clarity on this subject, leaving you with a picture for the purpose of marriage. GOD’S DESIRE TO SAVE I will start in the scriptures where the first scene opens with Jesus getting up early in the morning, he heads to the temple, people start to gather and he begins to teach them. Well, it wasn’t long before the likely group of trouble makers showed up which we can read as it is recorded in John 8:2-11 Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, making her stand in the center. “Teacher,” they said to Him, “this woman was caught in the act of committing adultery. In the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. So, what do You say?” They asked this to trap Him, in order that they might have evidence to accuse Him. All eyes are on Jesus to see what he will say and do. It is true these corrupt men were referencing God’s perfect command to not commit adultery and the breaking of that command if caught for the perpetrators was execution. From their point of view they knew Jesus would have to respond if he was truly an emissary of God, a just teacher, the son of God as he was claiming. I wish I could have been there to see this, knowing now that this is God in the flesh as he looked at these accusers and this woman. I think my heart would have filled with anxiousness and anticipation because I know why these accusers really came, but what would the Son of God do? I also can see the devil in this scenario standing among these accusers encouraging them. The devil looks at the son of God saying with this moment, “is this not your commandment?” and “doesn’t it have penalties if it is transgressed?”. “If God is really “JUST” you must strike a pledge with these men and destroy this woman!”, but that is not what happens. I know our Lord our God is wiser than all wickedness that can seem to prevail in the land. It says next, Jesus stoops down and started writing with his finger on the ground. Many have proposed what Jesus was writing, maybe grace, love, the accusers’ names, their sins or just doodling while he was thinking. Could it be he was just writing again with his finger as he did almost 1,500 years earlier? When he wrote on those stone tablets with His finger the ten commandments Moses brought down from the mountain to this people. Did he start to write on the ground DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL HAVE NO OTHER GODS BEFORE ME, YOU SHALL NOT MAKE FOR YOURSELF IDOLS. I am sure the trouble makers who could see were paying attention to what Jesus was writing, but their strong dislike for Jesus made them impatient, arrogant and rude. It goes on to say, When they persisted in questioning Him, He stood up and said to them,“The one without sin among you should be the first to throw a stone at her.” Then He stooped down again and continued writing on the ground. Did Jesus now continue to write the 10 commandments, DO NOT TAKE THE LORD YOUR GOD NAME IN VAIN. We don’t know? But this story is Jewish literature which many times pointedly reflects on the Old Testament in writings, which we read in the new to make known a greater truth. What we do know is they understood the message Jesus was making known to them. It then goes on to say, When they heard this, they left one by one, starting with the older men. Only He was left, with the woman in the center. When Jesus stood up, He said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, Lord, “she answered. “Neither do I condemn you, “said Jesus. “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.” The reason I share this story first in connection to the subject matter is for this reason. I want you to know even though Jesus came as a judgement in the way people were living their lives in contrast to how he was living His which is what we will all be judged by, he did not come to condemn. The final judgment with its condemnation will come, but it isn’t this day. The scriptures repeatedly say in many ways that Jesus came to save us and redeem us from the destructive work of sin and death. He also offered Himself as a sacrifice for all our sins because none of us could be justified before God, not even our accusers. So, in whatever state you find yourself in, if that is married, divorced, remarried or desiring marriage, God wants to redeem you from the destructive work of sin and death in your life. God is concerned about you being in right relationship with Him first and not a one of us can do so in our own power, not one! MARRIAGE STANDARDS The second place I would like to go is Matthew 19:3-9. There are a few other places where Jesus is recorded speaking about marriage & divorce, but these particular verses say a lot. And of course, the scene as usual starts off with the irritated, arrogant and maybe even envious religious leaders who have probably heard by now Jesus’s views on divorce. So, it says in verse 3, Some Pharisees approached Him to test Him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife on any grounds?” We know by what we have read written that Jesus holds to the highest views of marriage. It had to convict some of them of the ungodly views concerning the lack of value of marriage that was present in their culture and that it was wrong. What was the test? They wanted Jesus to cave-in to the cultural acceptance of treating marriage with contempt. And if they couldn’t get Jesus to do that, they at least wanted him to say, “what Moses said to you was wrong”. But Jesus first asks them, “haven’t you read?” These are Pharisees, so not only did they study the Torah (what we know as the first 5 books of the old testament) they were supposedly the go-to guys for the interpretation of it. Let’s continue to read starting in verse 4 Jesus speaking, “Haven’t you read,” He replied, “that He who created them in the beginning made them male and female,” and He also said: “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, man must not separate.” Ok, the Pharisee didn’t have a reply to that because it was recorded in the Book of Genesis and it makes sense. I am sure now dumbfounded because Jesus moved the debate to the point of origin, they went directly to Moses to find their justification for divorce. Let’s continue reading. “Why then,” they asked Him, “did Moses command us to give divorce papers and to send her away?” Come-on, really? Do you think for a moment Moses provide for such a lenient view on marriage? Jesus now continues. He told them, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because of the hardness of your hearts. But it was not like that from the beginning. And I tell you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.” That can also to be applied to a woman who divorces her husband. It’s the same premise. In fact, in the book of Mark it references the woman who divorces also. Mark’s gospel was addressed to a different audience unlike within the Jewish culture which at that time didn’t permit a woman the right to divorce. If she wanted to get out because something was very bad she would have had a hard time of it. Two things God speaks to us through the words of Jesus. The first is God holds the highest regard for marriage between a man and a woman in His sight. In marriage, he no longer sees them as two people, but one sharing in a life together. Outside of a 3rd person entering that union through sexual immorality defiling it in this way, He does not give us other reasons for divorce. This is the standard of marriage and there is no getting around it. Let’s talk about that standard further. Using that standard and explaining it another way in a broader sense, a man and woman have made a decision to enter a sanctum of God. Together the two of you are expected to care for and love one another in your journey of worship and service to God. I want to point out again that this is about God. In exchange, you receive the exclusive blessings designed for this type of union (relationship) like companionship, sexual intimacy, procreating (having children), security and protection naming only a few. Everything done there and that comes from there will be judge on its merit. And God’s judgment is greater I believe in this union because you are holding each other through a bond. If you are a believer who is now acting wickedly you are holding the other person under a false pretense of an assumed right under God’s name. Most of the time we only consider this when things become worse and the thoughts of separation seem to be the only way to alleviate the problem either through separation from one another or through a divorce. Which by the time we arrive at this point we can forget the little seeds of sin we have planted along the way and left unchecked, growing to produce the bad and the ugly. Then we go and blame each other for the rotten fruit that has made everyone sick, forgetting those tiny seeds of sin that had been sown that had brought about this harvest. Sinning against someone who is bound is much worse than sinning against someone who is able to be free of you. This is especially true for a believer being held in the marriage out of their own devotion to God and wanting to do what is right. It doesn’t permit an easy escape, but only a dilemma. A dilemma that doesn’t have good answers because of the sin inflicted upon it. What God designed wasn’t made for carrying sin and if that is what it is used for it will eventually be destroyed and all those involved damaged. Maybe the marriage won’t end up in divorce, but the water becomes too bitter to drink from and the life ebbs out of it. In most places a person has a right to choose their spouse for marriage. The two of you in doing so decided to set a dimension of life apart out of your own free will to partake of the exclusive benefits that come from this type of relationship. God has permitted for believers do so under a system of rules and circumstances that provide healthy boundaries for the husband and wife to live in. What God did not permit was for you to help separate what He allowed to be joined together in this kind of relationship but it does happen because of sin and adultery. Now we have God’s intent for marriage, but we also recognize man’s sinfulness and its destructive work that can cause its demise. Jesus said that divorce happens because of the hardness of man’s heart. We know that a heart becomes hard because of sin and our sin divides us from God. Once divide from the fear of the Lord then the heart of the perpetrators, the husband or wife or both, can become sinful and deceptive without conviction and will damage and divide a marriage. Once the conviction to do what is right is gone and we can then justify doing what is wrong the result will be divorce or this dead corpse of oneness that used to be a marriage you now drag around. Jesus also makes known that the deceptiveness of our unrepentant heart can be eager or persuaded to enter another relationship in its continuance to sin. Jesus was making it known that this kind of thinking is adultery. It is why he says, “if you divorce and go marry another it’s adultery”. What’s Jesus saying? This kind of pursuit is the same as adultery even though you have a divorce paper as a stamp of approval to make it all seem OK, it’s still not right. Throw the one away you are dissatisfied with to go get another you might be satisfied with, so we justify it by making it seem proper. In most places we have no fault divorce which means you really don’t need a reason, never mind a good reason, to leave your spouse to go after another. When the heart becomes hard any reason will seem like a good one at the time. ADULTEROUS MINDSET Now the term Adultery is where I wanted us to end up. An adulterous mindset in a marriage has far reaching aspects to it, because for the believer this mindset is developed against God first. Jesus one time when referring to his own people called them a wicked and adulterous generation. Did Jesus say this because everyone was having sex outside of their marriage? Of course not. Why did he call them adulterous? Let us look at what was going on when Jesus said this to them. Again, our favorite people who would be very easy to loathe wanted to put Jesus through another test. Matthew 16:1 the Pharisees and Sadducees approached, and as a test, asked Him to show them a sign from heaven. And Jesus ended the conversation by saying to them in Matthew 16:4 An evil and adulterous generation demands a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” Then He left them and went away. The reason I wanted you to see this is because of man’s struggle with God from the beginning can be seen in this kind of thinking. It can be seen in the men here that approached Jesus. In man from the beginning and the Jewish history with God, it has been marked as an adulterous one in that they were never satisfied with God and His provision for them. They would sin against and go outside of that relationship with God to obtain what they wanted in an attempt to satisfy themselves. What does that show? It shows just how man can be sinful. It shows that if they cannot abide in a right relationship with God who is able to supply for their wellbeing, that same unfaithful disloyal nature in a person who can’t be satisfied, will go outside of an exclusive relationship to get what one wants regardless of how it may hurt others or even destroy a marriage. It is no wonder unsatisfied people will go outside of a relationship and sin to get what they want and not abide by boundaries God has given them. It’s simply because the thoughts of living and pleasing God are absent partially or wholly from their thoughts. They have been tricked to believe the pursuit of satisfying themselves has more to offer than the joy of pleasing God. That joy is something that a person cannot know or see until they make the choice to know and follow Jesus. They are deceived. A little deception and an unwillingness to seek God for the truth so you can obey, usually will end up producing a bigger deception that will knock you and others right out. These men, we just read about here wanted a sign, others more money, some a new partner, still others something else beyond what God had provided for them to make what is good. When you work with God to make good what he has given to you that agreement with Him will provide you all the joy you need to be satisfied. You will also find that there is much more to be given you when you care for what you have. This becomes a challenge in marital conflict because if you start not liking what you have you won’t care for it. I hope you can see this is not just a dissatisfaction in your relationship with your spouse that it is a symptom that there is something wrong with your relationship with God. You are missing something. Don’t panic that is why God sent Jesus to save us and through that relationship He will teach you what is right, don’t give up hope. What becomes even more dangerous is if you just ignore all of it and hypocrisy in living becomes common place. What happens is pleasing God becomes just a formality with no heart that we can slowly justify away our current condition. Jesus says it like this, “I know your deeds, you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead.” Watch out! The destroyer is right behind. The destroyer loves a harden a heart waxed cold from sin. It also shows humans can’t be trusted with life apart from God’s knowledge to possess it. It is only through a right relationship with God and growing in it that we can understand His care of it which has boundaries for it. These boundaries, rules and laws that govern life we cannot completely see with our eyes or understand it with the limited knowledge of our mind, but it is made known in our heart spiritually when we are in right relationship with God. It is only then in our thinking we can adopt the mind of Christ. That’s a big statement I know, but it is one we need to ask ourselves? Can God trust you with this gift of life and the things pertaining to it, like a marriage? If you are a believer you have a marriage to God through Jesus Christ, can you be trusted in it? Or will you sin against your betrothed (Christ) and our marriage to him (Christ) going outside of the relationship to satisfy yourself in whatever way you decide will be pleasing to you? That is Adulterous that is Adultery by God’s standards! The Apostle Paul in the letter to the Ephesians in chapter 5 says what we need to hear. It is written so well that I would not do justice trying to bring interpretation to it. He is speaking through this letter directed at believers so please take a moment and read chapter 5 carefully starting at the beginning. (for length sake I won’t do so here) Towards the end of chapter 5 Paul marvels at the thought of the man and woman becoming one flesh in reference to us and God. He says, “This mystery is profound, but I am talking about Christ and the church. “ Marriage isn’t about another pursuit in this life to obtain something to see what you can get out of it to satisfy yourself. It is about the condition of your heart towards it and being represented in it that God looks at. Our attitude towards this one flesh union to one another represents a barometer of our relationship with God. How so? Let’s look at the scriptures in 1 John a letter of 3 written by the Apostle John. John is believed to be writing in this letter to believers most likely of the church in Ephesus. This letter at the least to me shows how a believer’s barometer works. His words in this letter might sound redundant when reading the whole letter, but think of it like instructions to a barometer that gives you the ability to understand something that is measured by it. So, let me pull a few verses from this informative letter. 1 John 2:3-6 This is how we are sure that we have come to know Him: by keeping His commands. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” yet doesn’t keep His commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly in him the love of God is perfected. This is how we know we are in Him: The one who says he remains in Him should walk just as He walked. 1 John 2:15-17 Do not love the world or the things that belong to the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him. And the world with its lust is passing away, but the one who does God’s will remains forever. 1 John 3:10-11 Whoever does not do what is right is not of God, especially the one who does not love his brother. For this is the message you have heard from the beginning: We should love one another 1 John 4:20-21 If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For the person who does not love his brother he has seen cannot love the God he has not seen. And we have this command from Him: The one who loves God must also love his brother. Since our English interpretations to words written in Greek are hard to make equal at times. Translators have used the word “hate” for the best interpretation of its significance in the Greek. This I think can really excuse us from what is being said by the strong feeling that the word “hate” implies to us. There were other descriptive words that translators in considering the use of this word could have formed their opinions in their consensus which can be found in Strong’s concordance and Thayer’s Greek lexicon. These were: To love less, to postpone in love or esteem, to detest, to strongly dislike, to show disregard or indifference If you tape all these descriptives together, it will give you a better understanding into the word “Hate” used here and better correlation in its meaning in relation to us. Loving your brother or one another includes your spouse. You don’t receive a special exemption if your brother or sister is your spouse. What goes on in this relationship is meant to exemplify our knowledge, devotion and love of God, if not about what worth we have we assigned to it? If we do not love our husband or our wife who is your brother or sister rightly growing in that knowledge, how can we say we have knowledge of God and really say we love Him? This is the standard for marriage to be consider. I also realize because marriage was something made for man by God to be lived out in Him that some may find themselves married to an unbelieving spouse. God wants you to do what is right in loving your spouse. The change in the unbelieving part of your spouse must come from God, but if we do what is right and pray it will help us not to be in the way of them finding it in Jesus. Do you really value marriage as the gift it is from God to us? Because you will be judged by it. Others may not see how you conduct yourself within it- good, bad or ugly. You may even learn to develop a well ingrained hypocrisy by covering up your sin because other people can’t see, but God sees. And if you have children they are watching! For those divorced and considering remarriage or those marrying for the first time one of God’s addendums to a command says, “He who carries his name in vain will not be held guiltless.” If God does provide you with the opportunity as you are following Him to receive for the first time or again this gift of marriage, remember whom much has been given much will be required. I hope the intent is godly or it won’t end well. As important as keeping marriage is it really pales in view of our need for salvation, so that we can enter a marriage with the savior who is our husband and our maker. If it wasn’t for God’s mercy and forgiveness through Jesus, we would not have another opportunity to be in right relationship with God, but through His mercy and forgiveness we were given another chance. And each time we sin, we can find forgiveness and mercy through repentance. So, remember to whom much has been given, much will be required because there is not one of us that could have justified ourselves. LAST WORDS I hope this has helped you to consider a godly perspective on marriage, including behavior that contributes to divorce. If your marriage is in real trouble or you are in danger seek help immediately, hopefully some godly individuals can be of help. Also pray to God to help guide you in your steps. It is not being disloyal to ask for help if you are really stuck. It is attempting to do what is right by trying to save your marriage, especially if you have children and before one of you wants to abandon it. Not that your legacy for them alone is that you didn’t get a divorce, but that you can have the best marriage possible, honoring God in which they can use it to learn about God through it. Your children will learn something, but it is better to see and learn of the grace, mercy, forgiveness and love that you show each other. Believe me, there is not one couple that does this successfully. A true believer will tell you it is only by the mercy & grace of God that we live and stay together. We are all saved like this no matter what state you may find yourself in, married, divorced or remarried our hope is in the Lord. Since it does take both of you to have God’s will in your marriage if the unthinkable has happened and you find yourself divorced or in the process due to your sin, their sin or both of your sins, which is usually the case, there is repentance, forgiveness and restoration. Anyone will tell you the road of restoration is not easy after this dirty deed is done. It would have been better to work on the marriage when you had a chance, but because of the deceptiveness of sin many times it can be too late. A well-known saying, “sin takes you farther than you wanted to go and costs you more than you can afford to pay.” We hear that all the time but it’s very evident after suffering a divorce. Thank you, Jesus, for the cross otherwise none of us would be able to bear our sin. Thank you, Jesus, for the cross that can give us hope after the destruction. Lastly, those who suffered divorce if the opportunity presents itself for remarriage consider yourself warned in the seriousness of the commitment to God in it. We are living in a culture with an epidemic of profane beliefs where infectious sin is proliferating in lifestyles that are not godly or acceptable in God’s sight. These are awaiting punishment. God’s desire is to redeem you from that sin and death that grows among us and set you in a place that no man can. If through reading this article it has stirred something in you and has convicted your heart and you would say I don’t know God like this? Know Jesus who was God in the flesh, came into his creation 2000 years ago to share a message of redemption that can save you from your own sinful ways that destined you to destruction. A destruction that was made for satan and his demons where you do not want to go for all eternity! Can you imagine a situation that has no end with torment? Redemption is now. Jesus, God’s only begotten son died as an innocent man accepting the punishment for the penalty of your sin. He did this so that you could be reconciled into right standing that you might be able to have a right relationship with God. Why? Because God loves you that much! God wants to save you before it becomes too late. Even now the hour grows late. His promise to us is that we will live forever with Him in a new heaven and a new earth without sin. Sin is present today to test the hearts of men to see if we will choose Him over it. This is the only way given us that through it we may grow in oneness with Him our maker. Speaking to the person that feels they have nothing in this world your inheritance is eternal life. He trusted you with His son the giver of life and you chose what was right. If you want to know God in this way read this and pray in your own words. First, let God know you repent, which means you will turn away from your sinful (wrong) ways. Saying next you accept Jesus’s sacrifice (which was a death of an innocent man, Jesus) for the penalty due your own sin. A penalty that was keeping you from being in a right relationship with God. Thirdly, let God know that you want Jesus to be the Lord and governor of your life because you will need his help and the help of His Spirit as you endeavor to love the Lord your God with all your heart, strength and mind. And lastly, do not forget to thank Him for this gift of life best understood as an eternal marriage to your husband your maker. If you believe what you just prayed, asking it of God you have been made a child of God and a co-heir with His son Jesus Christ by your own faith in the one true God. Go now and as Jesus would say, “sin no more” (don’t make room for sin to have place in your lifestyle) and seek God in this new life you have been given. Seek Him through His words which we find in the Bible. Start in the “Gospel of John” to see what you have become a partaker of. Seek out others who are doing the same that you may walk together in worship at the best believing church you can find. Diligently seek Him! You will need Him to overcome sin and love as He loved. You will then understand the joy that so many before us have known and a peace this world cannot give. If you have prayed to God for this you have just taken your first step on this journey into eternity with Him so walk well. Even though I may never know who you are in this life. I am looking forward to meet you some day. I am very happy for you. Sincerely, Mark Balicki
  6. I think this is a question we ask ourselves from time to time and that is "is it to late for you to follow God?" I think we believe we have strayed for so long will the Lord still lead me after I have rejected Him in so many ways that I have been living. Well, the answer is yes, but it also depends on you. Do you want to live for yourself? or for Christ Jesus? There is an eternal reward in choosing Jesus and a contentment and deep seated joy in this life that living for yourself in this world can not give you. This video I made focuses on a world competing for our time, our thoughts and our strength that can keep you from hearing from the Lord. You may be looking for the Lord in the loudness of the circumstances around you because you forgot what takes to hear Him. My question to you if you are doing so, are you finding Him in all the loudness going on around us? In this video I give some insight from the scriptures concerning some thoughts on these things.
  7. Thanks for sharing your video. Well made. I think you choose to know and follow Jesus daily to the best of your ability, and those steps will lead you somewhere. To be honest choosing to do what is right daily makes up who we are as believers and where that leads only God knows, but you will be ready if this is the path of belief in God followed by right actions you chose to take. The word says, " The steps of a man are ordered by the LORD who takes delight in his journey. though he falls, he will not be overwhelmed, for the LORD is holding his hand. Although, the steps we take are not in a vacuum others are watching us as a testimony of our devotion and desire to please God or not. We are God's witnesses so others might see His glory. Paul said it like this," God wanted to make known among the Gentiles the glorious wealth of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.We proclaim Him, warning and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature in Christ. I labor for this, striving with His strength that works powerfully in me." All of our steps at some point will come to an end one way or another as redeemed or unredeemed. But one comes with a reward for our devotion even though our paths may differ the reward is ours carrying us through those hard times because of the wonderful promise and our Hope. We are His! May God have mercy and help us who choose to do what is right.
  8. One of the Last steps before a culture or people are given over is when they believe they have become more important than God. The worship of the Lord through right actions and right thinking becomes secondary to the worship of one's self through one's thinking and actions seeing to one's own needs consistently over everyone else. This final state of self-absorption makes you oblivious to the true disaster that's on its way. This is a short video I made called "Abandon Foundations" in which I touch on these things. If you watch please comment on what you see around you. Have we abandon God's foundation of truth? Do we worship ourselves? What do think?
  9. I made this video concerning one of the real reasons for salvation. It is the cause and effect of all things. And there is only one who can lead us into the knowledge of how we overcome it and through whose power we need to do it. Sometimes, in our daily life it is easy to ignore the real reason we need God's salvation. If we are saved we view it as receiving eternal life and a heavenly kingdom. And most stop there and miss the importance of our need of salvation in our daily life which God our creator desires to show us from a place of wisdom, understanding and knowledge. So many see eternal life as destination, not realizing you have been offered an opportunity to be saved from what can destroy you today and for the rest of life eternally whatever that may look like in the future. What I am talking about in this video is what took out 1/3 of the angels, wiped out humanity once from the face of the earth except for 8 and will again bring about a great judgement on humanity who reject God's help to live right, even professing christians. If you watch the video let me know what you think concerning your thoughts on salvation. https://youtu.be/wvvA3W2qIvo
  10. This is a good point that bible teachers gloss over when talking about this subject. The trouble has been has been happening for a long time, and will culminate in such a end time trouble that it will leave no choice than for Jesus to return.
  11. All of this is believable, but yet hard to believe we are heading in this direction.
  12. What have you been taught about Babylon the Great? I put this video together to share what I believe God showed me concerning this, but I talk to you first about your family of faith and the implications it has in the end times. This is a 40 minuten video, but you will glean some information I believe will send you to God asking for more understanding. You must be aware which is the theme for the believer in this time we have entered. It will take faith and perseverance of the Saints, The Spirit help, God's ability to save and being equipped with knowledge to help you navigate this. Come back and share some comments or insights you have concerning this.
  13. What if some of what you have been taught about the book of revelation is wrong. Even though there are many mainstream theories that are passed on and repeated over and over, but does it make them right. Have you given them much thought yourself? What if some the things you learned were to throw you off so you do not see what is really coming and will not be ready, but instead seduced by the enemy to take a different path. The end is coming because of sin and rebellion against God. The violence committed to and in God's creation will be judge by Him that is a fact. i want to start sharing with you some things you in this video I made that you may not have heard before because too many people have been making guesses instead of being led by the Spirit which when it is time He will show us. Now is that time because if you are following Jesus you will be able to see. This will not be won through a geo-political fight or politics. when God says, 'It is the day of reckoning" all things will be called to account and receive what is due it. Here is a vid I made concerning a few of the scriptures of John's revealing of the end starting with the basics. What is the beast? read some of the comments posted on the video below some good insights were brought forth by other viewers. Hope you comment and share your thoughts here or there, but add to the conversation. https://youtu.be/u-JilorzYT0
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