ZION MINISTRY - BIBLE PROPHECY
How should you observe it?
By Neville V. Stevens
New International Version used throughout unless otherwise stated.
There are many people today who profess Christianity, yet believe they dont have to follow Christ in everything. Their reasoning is that Christ did it all for them. Their hatred of Gods Laws forbids them to honour Him in any way except lip-service!
Now the Passover that Christ instituted presents some real problems for these lawless wretches. Christs instructions were explicit concerning the observance of this day. On the one hand they have to recognize that Christ was the Passover Lamb, yet they refuse to honour the Passover, which Christ instructed them to do in remembrance of Him.
It took some very creative reasoning to circumvent these instructions. But with the wily cunning of the arch-rebel of the universe, they reduced it to mere food and drink, and called it the Lords supper. Dispensing with the name Passover gave them considerable flexibility to circumvent the instruction for its observance.
The Passover has everything to do with the doorway. Among the House of Israel, it was the doorway onto which the blood of the sacrificial lamb was to be splashed. Luke 13:24 Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside pleading, Sir, open the door for us. But he will answer, I dont know you or where you came from. Remember the days of Noah? God Himself slammed shut the door of the ark, just before the flood swept them all away! It will be just like the days of Noah!
Christ is the door and the way. Some versions interchange the word door with gate. The overall purpose is preserved in both words.
John 10:7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. (KJV)
John 10:7 Therefore Jesus said again, I tell you the truth, I am the gate [door] for the sheep. All who ever came before Me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate [door]; whoever enters through Me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they might have life, and have it to the full. (NIV).
Of the thieves and robbers, Christ said this: John 10:1 I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate [door], but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. The man who enters by the gate [door] is the Shepherd of the sheep. The watchman opens the gate [door] for Him, and the sheep listen to His voice.
The watchman opens the door for the Shepherd and Christ is the true Shepherd: V11 I am the good Shepherd. The good Shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
Christ also made provision for His own servants to make a last minute rescue of loved ones: Luke 11:5-10 Then He said to them, Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him. Christ is speaking to His true servants when He says Suppose one of you.. Now at midnight (the time of the death angels visit), a friend comes knocking on the door and asks for bread. Not one loaf, but three! Its not by coincidence that this is recorded: Luke 13:20 Again He asked, What shall I compare the Kingdom of God to? It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount (margin: three satas or three measures) until it worked all through the dough. Three measures made three loaves.
All this may seem elementary until you realize that Christ is also that Bread! The friend of the servants of God, who comes as late as midnight for all three measures of bread, may be admitted. This is a kindness that Christ extends to His friends His faithful servants! (The KJV reverses the role of the one on the inside and the one who comes knocking. In doing so, they defeat the purpose and meaning of the passage).
The blood that was struck on the doorway was applied to three places. On the top or lintel, and on the two sides. This corresponds to the forehead and hands of a man. God wants you to know that! (Ex 12:7, Ex 13:16). If you checked these verses in your Bible, then you will know that God also speaks of the antithesis to this in reference to the mark of the Beast. You can accept one or the other, not both! Both speak of the forehead and the hands.
Those who choose to filter out truth and only retain what is acceptable to them are worthless, and unfit for the Kingdom of God. Such people will be easy marks for the mark of the beast. God gives us a detailed account of how it will be; this is found in Revelation, chapter 14. Here we find three angels that arise one after the other. These are described as follows: Rev 14:6 Then I saw another angel flying in mid-air, and he had the Eternal Gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth to every nation, tribe, language and people. He said in a loud voice, Fear God and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come. Worship Him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water. This is the time when the Eternal Gospel goes out to the whole world as a warning! This is the time when the hour of His judgment has come not before! Its very clear that Gods Eternal Gospel has never gone out to the whole world. Some have imagined that they have fulfilled this by taking their own gospel mans gospel - into the world. Theyve trivialized Gods Eternal Gospel and made a mockery of it!
Then the second angel appears: V8 A second angel followed and said, Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great, which made all the nations drink the maddening wine of her adulteries. This speaks of the maddening wine of Babylon, and the adulterous teachings that emanate from this city. This is the city that is prepared for Satan and by him. Wherever Islam proliferates you see a nation of lunatics. Slavering, mad fools besotted by the maddening wine of Satans adulterous ways. They epitomize the very seed of Satan the devil. And whoever drinks of this maddening wine will fall into the same trap!
After this we see a complete change of scenario! With the appearance of the third angel comes the appearance of the beast with all the power and authority of Satan the devil (Rev 13:2). Those who thought Babylon and the Islamic hordes were troublesome will find that he who appears with all the power and authority of Satan will add new dimensions to the meaning of horror!
V9 A third angel followed and said in a loud voice: If anyone worships the beast and his image and receives his mark on their forehead or on the hand, he, too, will drink the wine of Gods fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of His wrath. He will be tormented with burning sulphur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name. This calls for patient endurance on the part of the saints who obey Gods Commandments and REMAIN faithful to [the testimony of] Jesus.
The above words are Gods words not mine! If anyone believes them to be scaremongering, then feel free to do so. That is your choice! If you think that God is lying, then it wont be long before you prove otherwise.
From now on, those who refuse to obey Gods Commandments, and refuse to accept the Testimony of Jesus (Rev 19:10) will find there is no way back! Remember Lots wife! What happened to Sodom and Gomorrah is about to happen to all the enemies of God. These cities were tormented with burning sulphur and destroyed this is the fate of all those who refuse to believe God!
You will notice this calls for patient endurance on the part of the saints! What do the saints have to endure? Well, the saints have another baptism to go through, just like Christ! He was handed over to the beast and suffered his final baptism. The saints who endure and are not beguiled by the maddening wine of the harlot Babylon, and REMAIN faithful to the Commandments of God and the Testimony of Jesus will be used in the service of God just like Christ! They too, will be handed over to the beast: Dan 7:21 As I watched, this horn was waging war against the saints and defeating them, until the Ancient of Days came and pronounced judgment in favour of the saints of the Most High, and the time came when they possessed the Kingdom. The saints will have to be strong to endure this, and they must remain faithful to the Commandments of God and the Testimony of Jesus! But its these very saints of the Most High that will possess the Kingdom!
God gives further instruction in V25 He (the beast) will speak against the Most High and oppress His saints and try to change set times and laws. The saints will be handed over to him for a time, times, and half a time. God handed over His own Son to endure the most vicious of baptisms; does He require any less of those who will be joint-heirs in the Kingdom of God?
God hasnt called anyone to honour him with only their stupid lip-service. Christ qualified to receive all Power and Authority under the Father because He was obedient even to death. God makes this very clear in Rev 5:12 In a loud voice they sang: WORTHY is the Lamb, WHO WAS SLAIN, to receive Power and wealth and wisdom and strength and glory and praise. And all this time, Christianity has believed that Christ died for the ONLY purpose of giving them eternal life in Gods Kingdom FOR DOING NOTHING!! What an insult to God for them to imagine themselves to be WORTHY of anything when they refuse to serve God and honour Him as His faithful Son did! What a farce their miserable water baptism was!
Did I mention that those who have once tasted of the Heavenly gift (which is also the manna from heaven) have no further sacrifice (Passover) left for them? These people are already condemned there is no way back! Heb 6:4 It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the Word of God and the POWERS OF THE COMING AGE, if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting Him to public disgrace. This speaks of a COMING AGE and of the great POWER that will be evident. Some, who have received the down-payment of the heavenly gift, imagine they can serve God in any manner they choose. Of course most of Christianity have never received this down-payment. They have never had the Holy Spirit! They have fed their egos with silly acts that have brought the Son of God to public disgrace. Youve seen them! They stand on street corners handing out worthless tracts that speak about the person of Jesus (as they see Him!) Then there are those who jump for Jesus, or organize group prayer meetings where they all howl like dogs to whip up the Spirit. Is this MATURITY?
Notice what is said in the context of the above verse: V1 Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings ABOUT Christ and go on to MATURITY Now some may believe they are honouring Christ by acting like clowns. Their only reward is the fuzzy feeling they get with their insulting behaviour, but for bringing Christ to public disgrace with their lack of maturity, they have branded themselves unworthy of any reward. Again in the context of these verses we find V7 Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessings of God. But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned. Its the crop, the good seed, that receives the blessing of God. Its these who teach the message that Christ delivered, and go on to maturity leaving aside the teachings about Christs person and His status as a humble carpenter. Its the good seed that speaks of the Powers of the COMING AGE and upon whom the Living Water descends. It might be a good time to learn the meaning of maturity!
Christ made some very important points concerning the Passover and its meaning for those He has called: John 6:44 No-one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the Prophets (Neviim): They will all be taught by God. Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from Him comes to Me. Of course, most of Christianity today ignore the Prophets (Neviim). Yet all the Prophets (Neviim) are the Word of the Father. The Book of Revelation is often referred to as the Revelation of Jesus Christ, but they neglect to add this: Rev 1:1 The revelation of Jesus Christ WHICH GOD GAVE HIM to show His servants what must soon take place. Most Christians today REFUSE to be taught by God, and neither do they believe Christ!
Reading on in John 6:47 I tell you the Truth, he who believes has everlasting life.
Exactly what Christ said! Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from Him comes to Me. You MUST be taught by God! Remember these words, because Christ refers to them again and gives the reason why!
Christ spoke many times of all that is written in the Prophets. He taught only that which was given Him by the Father: John 14:24 He who does not love Me will not obey My teaching. These Words you hear are not My own; they belong to the Father who sent Me. And to further emphasize, all the Words Christ spoke were from the Father: V10 Dont you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in Me? The Words I say are not just My own. Rather, it is the Father, living in Me, who is doing this Work. And what do we find? Christianity has adopted their own teachings that dispense with all the teachings of the Father! The opt for a doctrine of nothingness that requires their followers to only believe THEM!
As we continue on in John chapter 6, we find out exactly what Christ is talking about. We find this in the very next verse: V48 I am the Bread of life. Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, yet they died. But there is the Bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. I am the Living Bread that came down from heaven. If a man eats of this Bread he will live forever. This Bread is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
This proved to be extremely hard to take! Not only did the Jewish people who were listening baulk, but also His disciples: V52 Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, How can this man give us his flesh to eat? And the disciples: V60 On hearing it, many of His disciples said, This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it? V66 From this time many of His disciples turned back and no longer followed Him. It was probably only the twelve that remained! (V67).
Lets examine what it was they found so offensive: V53 Jesus said to them, I tell you the Truth, unless you can eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is real food and My blood is real drink. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood remains in Me and I in him. Just as the Living Father sent Me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on Me will live because of Me. This is the Bread that came down from heaven. Our forefathers ate manna and died, but He who feeds on this Bread will live for ever. He said this while teaching in a synagogue in Capernaum.
Now we come to the part where Christ gives the reason why. Heres the whole account: V60 On hearing it, many of His disciples said, This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it? Aware that His disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, Does this offend you? What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where He was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The Words I have spoken to you are SPIRIT and they are LIFE. Yet there are some of you who dont believe. And why are the Words Christ spoke - Spirit and Life? Because the Testimony He gave is the Spirit of prophecy (Rev 19:10). He is the very embodiment of the Word of God (John 1:1). He is the Mighty Commander who will enforce the Eternal Gospel.
Christ said the Words He spoke were from the Father, and many of the Words Christ spoke were directly quoted from what is commonly called The Old Testament. He said these Words were SPIRIT and they are LIFE. Those who reject ANY of the Words of God have no life abiding in them! And what do we find? We find that many reject the Neviim, and also the very Words spoken by God and written with the very finger of God the Ten Commandments! All of which reside in the only Scripture that existed when John 1:1 was written. While the arguments of those who reject the Laws of God are transparently thin, the vehemence with which they project their views shows clearly how easily they would betray those who do honour and fear God.
Continuing with Christs Words in John 6:64 For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray Him. He went on to say, THIS IS WHY I TOLD YOU that no-one can come to Me unless the Father has enabled him.
It was this betrayal that lead to His baptism of death just as the former Scriptures stated. Just to get an idea of the type of mind that would betray Christ (and those who follow Him), we find an interesting account in the Books of Matthew, Mark and Luke. This is Lukes account: Luke 20:2 Tell us by what authority you are doing these things, they said, Who gave you this authority? He replied, I will ask you a question. Tell Me, Johns baptism was it from heaven, or from men? They discussed it among themselves and said, If we say, From heaven, He will ask, Why didnt you believe him? But if we say, From men, all the people will stone us, because they are persuaded that John was a prophet. So they answered, We dont know where it was from. Jesus said, Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.
This was the rationale of those who betrayed Him! They knew John the Baptist was a prophet from God! The first realization that he would be born was revealed in the Temple itself by a Levite priest and prophet Zechariah, the father of John (Luke 1:5-13). And these events were recorded in their own records. But they didnt fear God they feared the people in case they stoned them! So they refuted all the evidence and said they didnt know! This is the mark of the anti-Christ! This is the mind of the evil ones who prefer lawlessness to Truth! This is the mind that clings to the leaven of Herod with its lying deception which is hypocrisy!
And the answer to Christs question? Johns baptism was from heaven! Yes, the Father upheld this baptism to all who fear, honour and reverence His Name. But it was far more than a mere dunking! It was a commitment to a life of obedience. And God honoured all who truly acknowledged their responsibilities. We find another account in the Book of Acts concerning Johns baptism. It explains many things: Acts 18:24 Meanwhile a JEW named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. He had been instructed in the Way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervour and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John.
Ill leave you to consider all the ramifications of these very important words in the light of all that has been said on the subject.
Lets now consider what Johns role was. He was appointed to PREPARE THE WAY for the Lord. He was the messenger calling in the wilderness. Those who listened to him understood the way of the Lord those who didnt didnt! He fulfilled his commission perfectly, in fact word-perfectly! He said all the right things, quoted all the right Scriptures, and identified the Messenger of the Covenant Christ! Yet, when asked if he were that prophet the Elijah who will precede the great and dreadful Day of the LORD (Mal 4:5) he said no (John 1:21-23).
John began his ministry by quoting from Isa 40:2. He spoke of mountains being leveled and valleys being filled; he spoke of the surface of the earth being re-sculptured. Yet these things never happened in his time. Its true that God partially fulfilled these Words with a mighty display of power, and rocks came tumbling down in an awesome display. Those present knew that John had spoken the truth in all that he had said! This account is found in Matt 27:51 At that moment the curtain of the Temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook and the rocks split. The tombs broke open and the bodies of many holy people were raised to life. They came out to the tombs, and after Jesus resurrection they went into the Holy City and appeared to many people. While all these things were awesome events, they are merely shadows of what is to come.
Those who dont believe John the Baptist and all that he taught will certainly not believe the man who once again precedes the Messenger of the Covenant (Mal 3:1) and prepares the Way for Him.
Through the Spirit that dwelt in him, Peter also spoke of these events: 2Pet 3:10 But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything will be laid bare. Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and Godly lives as you look forward to the Day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with His promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness. And his final warning is found in V17 Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of LAWLESS MEN and fall from your secure position. Seen any LAWLESS MEN lately? These are the ones who hate the Fathers Laws especially the fourth! The fourth commandment speaks of the holy Sabbath Day THE VERY DAY THAT IDENTIFIES THE DAY OF THE LORD SPOKEN ABOUT BY PETER!
Concerning the outpouring of the Spirit of God on the Israelites, God has spoken of putting His Law into the hearts and minds of them all. And He refers to this as the New Covenant. It was at the Passover, just before His death, that Christ mentioned the New Covenant. Luke 22:20 In the same way, after the supper He took the cup, saying, This cup is the New Covenant in My blood, which is poured out for you. This is the cup that represents His baptism of death when His blood was poured out. It was His blood that ratified the New Covenant according to Law. Concerning the Law, the Book of Hebrews gives great detail in the fulfilling of the Law and why it was necessary. Heb 9:15 For this reason Christ is the Mediator of a New Covenant, that THOSE WHO ARE CALLED may receive the promised eternal inheritance now that He has died as a ransom to set them free from THE SINS COMMITTED UNDER THE FIRST COVENANT. The blood of Christ provided the ransom to redeem those who are called while still in their sins the sins committed under the first covenant.
The penalty for sin is death! Unless you are called and redeemed by the ransom of Christs blood, the penalty for all sins committed under the first Covenant continues and will claim your life forever. Until this ransom is acknowledged, and the sins committed under the first Covenant are repented of, then there is no hope for you. Now, most people are willing to acknowledge the ransom of Christs blood, but refuse to repent of their sins. Theyre content to believe theyre without sin because there is no Law; they believe Christ abolished it! Where there is no Law, there is no sin. If Christ abolished the Law in 30 C.E. then no-one has sinned since! Everyone attained perfection without Christ. How simple-minded is this? To eradicate sin, all God had to do was abolish the Law, and everyone is guiltless. And this is what Christianity believes today!
When you were called to acknowledge Christs baptism of death, you acknowledged it with repentence when you emerged from the baptism water. At that time, if your repentance was sincere, you received the down-payment of Gods Spirit. (The word earnest is used in some versions, and is a legal term meaning down-payment see Strongs concordance - #728). Though not perfect in its rendition, the NIV says this: 2Cor 1:22 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set His seal of ownership on us, and put His Spirit in our hearts as a DEPOSIT, guaranteeing WHAT IS TO COME. Christ made it very, very clear that the Fathers Spirit was implanted into the Apostles immediately after the baptism of Christs death (John 20:22). But He told them to wait to receive the Counsellor (John 14:16,26), which is Christs Spirit, which the Father sends in Christs name. Most people in this world have the spirit of Satan, and this has been the case for 6,000 years, and God made this clear from the earliest moment (Gen 3:16). The Spirit of Christ could not be poured out until Christ had undergone the baptism of death, the blood of which ratified the New Covenant. Though, to those who were given the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Christ was also imparted to them long before Christs birth: 1Peter 1:10 Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing, when He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow.
The perfection of Christs Spirit was to supplant the spirit of the arch-rebel of the universe. His Spirit did not supplant the Holy Spirit of God but enhanced it, making it a double-portion of Gods Spirit.
John the Baptist came preaching a message of repentance. This was the repentance of all the sins committed under the Covenant made with all Israel. Removing disobedience to the Law is the first step towards repentance; to acknowledge Gods Way and to obey Him! And the removal of disobedience means to obey Gods Law which is the first Covenant.
John the Baptist was a Levite, and this not only had to be proven, it was proven! His father , Zechariah, was a Levite priest who served at the Temple. God made it very clear that Zechariah was also a prophet. The credentials of John were impeccable, and everyone knew it! John had a large group of people who followed him. There is nothing to suggest that these were all Levites, in fact, the evidence suggests they came from many different tribes, though predominantly from the House of David (see Zech 12:7-14 for details of the House of David). Considering that Roman soldiers also came to John, its likely that there were also Gentiles in this group.
You will recall that long after John departed, Christ said He would build His Church (Matt 16:18), and it would be built on a rock; a lesser rock than the real Rock which is Christ. From the earliest moment, when Christ first saw Peter, he renamed him Cephas (John 1:42), which means something midway between a boulder and a pebble.
After the Resurrcction of Christ, Peters role was affirmed. It was Peter who was to feed the sheep because he loved Christ more than all the others (John 21:15). After Christ asked him the third time, Peter became alarmed and hurt, and insisted that he loved Christ (V17). Christ wanted these words to burn into the mind of Peter to prepare him for the death he would face (V19).
The Law and the Prophets prophesied until John who was the Elijah to come, who preceded Christs first appearance. From then on the Kingdom of God would be forcefully advanced. This is Christs account of this: Matt 11:11 I tell you the truth: among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the Kingdom of God is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now, the Kingdom of Heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it. For all the Prophets (Neviim) AND the Law PROPHESIED until John. And if you are willing to accept it, he was the Elijah to come. He who has ears let him hear.
Now at that time, some were not willing to accept it because if they did they would have to believe that Christ was the Messiah. And Christ did not fulfill their expectations of the Messiah. The Messiah they were expecting is the Desired One mentioned in Mal 3:1, the One who would usher in a Day that few could endure (V2). This is further described as the great and dreadful Day of the LORD (V5) the Day that Elijah immediately precedes (V4).
John only partially fulfilled this, and the Kingdom of God has not yet been established, even though the Seed has been planted, and the Holy Seed is a stump in the ground ready to bear much fruit.
But we dont have to strain over this. The Father has made it very clear in what He wrote in the Book of Revelation and which He gave to His Son to pass on (Rev 1:1). He foretold of an event that would lead to devastating carnage on a scale never before envisaged. Just as Absolom turned against David, God knows His other son will turn against Him and mount a war against Him. Satan will be cast to the earth with all his angels (Rev 12:7). This is when the Kingdom of God will be established and the authority of Christ (V10).
And just so that its clearly understood, notice these words: V13 When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the Male Child (this was the House of David of which Christ was the SON OF DAVID). And please understand this is NOT THE CHURCH! Initially, the dragon is enraged at this woman, and turns on her offspring, and here we have the group that is the Church (V17). The Church is the offspring of the woman.
Christ made it clear that Elijah will come and restore all things: Matt 17:11 Jesus replied, To be sure, Elijah comes and will restore all things. Then Christ mentions that Elijah had already come and they didnt recognize him and did to him everything they wished, just as they would with the Son of Man (V11-12). The Elijah that is to come before the great and dreadful day of the LORD will restore all things, not the least of which will be a little sanity into the perceptions of most. For the most part, the Churches of God have spoken like idiots in relation to the Plan of God with the whole focus on themselves. They love to quote Amos 3:7, but they nearly always leave off the last two words: Surely the Sovereign LORD does nothing without revealing His Plan to His servants THE PROPHETS. Those who do this, let it be known, are deceitful liars! They know the pathetic dribble they teach as prophecy has been generated from the minds of people who understand nothing!
THE NEW COVENANT
Everything that Christ did relates to the promises that God gave to Abraham. God promised He would bring the children of Abraham back from slavery and settle them in the promised land. He confirmed that He would be their God and they would be His people. Everything that happened to them was for an example for us: 1Cor 10:1 For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea. They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. They ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual Rock that accompanied them, and that Rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered over the desert. Now these things occurred as examples, to keep us from setting our hearts on evil things as they did. V11 These things happened to them as examples and were written down as WARNINGS FOR US, on whom the FULFILLMENT OF THE AGES has come. So if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you dont fall!
Christianity today doesnt believe this! By abolishing the first Covenant, they can disregard all the examples God has given us, the ones on whom the FULFILLMENT OF THE AGES has come. Of course Paul was saying all this long after Christ had departed yet insists the examples continue to apply. Mainstream Christianity sharply disagrees with Paul! They say they dont want to know anything except Christ crucified. These were Pauls words. Did Paul comply with them in the same manner as Christianity believes? Did Paul teach anything other than Christ crucified? Read 1Cor 10 again! In fact, read all Pauls writing and see if he did! Paul taught extensively from the only Scriptures available at the time (in fact for over a hundred years afterwards). Again and again he referred to them just as Christ and all the Apostles did!
So Paul made sure that everyone understood the source of our calling. Did he understand the link between idolatry and worshiping the image of the beast, and the Passover? Notice what he says: V14 Therefore, dear friends, flee from idolatry. I speak to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. Is not the CUP of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the BREAD that we break a participation in the Body of Christ? Because there is one loaf, we who are many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf. CONSIDER THE PEOPLE OF ISRAEL: Do not those who eat the sacrifices participate at the altar? Do I mean then that a sacrifice offered to an idol is anything? No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons. You cannot drink the CUP OF THE LORD and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lords table and the table of demons. Are we trying to arouse the Lords JEALOUSY? Are we stronger than He?
Perhaps you are seeing that the Passover is more than a mere symbol! Christ set out the exact format for observing the Passover. If you substitute the Passover ceremony with a lords supper, then you are worshipping demons! What is more, you are forbidden to do both (some people believe they can observe their lords supper at any time of the year and fulfill the requirements given by Christ. They cant!
The Book of Corinthians makes this abundantly clear: 1Cor 11:27 Therefore, whoever eats the Bread or drinks of the CUP OF THE LORD in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the Body and Blood of the Lord. A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the CUP. For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the Body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. But if we judged ourselves, we would not come under judgment. When we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned with the world.
Sounds rather serious, doesnt it? A little different from those who flippantly swallow some bread and wine at any old time of the year. Even those who try to simulate Christs instructions rarely do so after carefully examining themselves to see if they are worthy of participation.
All this has to do with repentance, baptism and the receiving of the Heavenly gift the down-payment of Gods Spirit. In the same Book of 1Corinthians, Paul wrote this: 1Cor 14:37 If any man thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lords command. If he ignores this, he himself will be ignored.
Too many people think they are prophets because they teach worthless prophecies that have no Scriptural basis. We saw a whole bunch of them breathing fire and brimstone over the Y2K bug. Then suddenly they were all strangely silent about this! Great prophets arent they? Well now they know they are not prophets! They failed the criteria! Perhaps they should be content to call themselves false prophets.
But its those who think they are spiritually gifted who are the most sickening of all! These love to pretend they have all sorts of gifts, and they feel the need to look very religious. Paul said this: 1Cor 3:18 Do not deceive yourselves. If any one of you thinks he is wise by the standards of this age, he should become a fool so that he may become wise. Most religious people teach lies in the guise of truth, which is unsupported from the Bible. Some television evangelists have learned a neat trick: they learn a few words in a foreign language and use it to convey the impression they have the gift of tongues. God is a practical God, and He gave the gift of languages predominantly to the man who was sent to the Gentiles. This man, Paul, had to convey Gods message to many people of different languages. It was a stipulation of speaking in foreign languages that someone interprets for the benefit of those who cant understand the language. Those who think they are spiritually gifted totally ignore this requirement. Paul said this: 1Cor 14:18 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. But in the Church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue. Brothers, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults. If only all the evangelists could begin to act like normal adult human beings, and leave the pantomime for the stage.
The Passover precedes the Seven Days of Unleavened Bread. Because this festival period uses the word unleavened its best to retain the word leaven rather than the modern equivalent of yeast. It seems most modern translations have substituted the word yeast because they no longer recognize the requirement to keep these Holydays. And to further the insult to God, most of mainstream Christianity eat hot cross yeast buns during this period.
Its a time to cast out the OLD leaven and purge us of every vestige of it, and our homes. God instituted these days for the House of Israel when they were leaving the realm of Satan in Egypt. He wanted them to leave Satans teachings and his ways behind them, and prepare themselves for the teachings of God. They were to become a holy nation.
So often we forget that from earliest times God set standards of conduct for all humanity. Yet of Satans seed, God had no expectation of obedience, but still He gave them every opportunity to do well and reap the rewards. John mentioned that Cain was the son of Satan, and Abel was the righteous one: 1John 3:12 Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his actions were evil and his brothers were righteous. In the same context, John spoke of the death of Jesus at the hand of a brother (Judas): V16 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.
The words of the Book of Hebrews should come as no surprise: Heb 11:4 By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead. Christ also referred back to the murder of righteous Abel as an indictment against those who accused Him: Matt 23:33 You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell? Therefore I am sending you PROPHETS and WISE MEN and TEACHERS. Some of them you will kill and crucify; others you will flog in your synagogues and pursue from town to town. And so upon you will come all the righteous blood that has been shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berakiah, whom you murdered between the Temple and the altar. I tell you the truth, all this will come on this generation. This generation being the offspring of the son of Satan Cain, and all who follow his pernicious ways.
The brother of Christ made it even plainer: Jude 1:10 Yet these men speak abusively against whatever they do not understand; and what things they do understand by instinct, like unreasoning animals these are the very things that destroy them. Woe to them! They have taken the way of Cain; they have rushed for profit into Balaams error; they have been destroyed in Korahs rebellion.
The purpose of all this is to show that it was the WAY of Cain, and the WAY of the present evil generation, and the WAY of Satan the devil that we must all stand against. The doctrine of Satan has nothing in common with Gods WAY! Nevertheless, many people want to worship God in the way that mainstream Christianity does. Theyre determined to worship God in the manner they devise just like Cain! God warns all not to learn Satans so-called deep secrets (Rev 2:24), so what do we find? Everyone is learning them, and in many ways, attempting to emulate them.
Where are all the PROPHETS and WISE MEN and TEACHERS that Christ sent? They are certainly not evident in the ranks of most organizations. Among the Churches of God, those who teach grace only for salvation, and despise the Laws of God, are typified by their stupidity - which is evident in all they say. Professing themselves to be wise, they have proven themselves to be fools! (Rom 1:21-23). Such people dont have minds of their own, but the mind of Satan the devil. Such people continually contradict themselves and twist the Scriptures to reflect their views.
How well Christs brother Jude describes them: Jude 1:16 These men are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires; they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage. Sound familiar? No doubt you have encountered many of these feeble-minded people. Of these people, Jude also said this: V12 These men are blemishes at your love feasts, eating with you without the slightest qualm shepherds who feed only themselves. They are clouds without rain, blown along by the wind; autumn trees, without fruit and uprooted twice dead. They are wild waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars, for whom blackest darkness has been reserved for ever.
Funnily enough, its such people who continually state they are lead by the Holy Spirit! Notice what else Jude wrote: V17 But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, In the last times there will be SCOFFERS who will follow their own ungodly desires. These are men who DIVIDE you, who follow mere natural instincts AND DO NOT HAVE THE HOLY SPIRIT.
Its a great insult to God that so many people listen to them, and hear their lying deceit, but still acknowledge these evil men have the Holy Spirit of God. THEY DONT HAVE IT! Dont insult the Spirit by saying they do! Surely you can recognize the doctrine of this evil generation that has the blackest darkness reserved for them! If you have become a respecter of persons to such a degree that you insult the Holy Spirit of God, then you, too, will join them.
On a closely related subject, we should also note what John wrote to his beloved friend Gaius: 3John 1:9 I wrote to the Church, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first, will have nothing to do with us. So if I come, I will call attention to what he is doing, gossiping maliciously about us. Not satisfied with that, he refuses to welcome the brothers. He stops those who want to do so, and puts them out of the Church. Real little demigods arent they? Weve seen a lot of this disgusting behaviour in recent years in the Churches of God. How easily some fall into this pattern! It all has to do with power and profit, and the wages of Balaam. Greedy slavering beasts who want to be first, and want to control everyone and everything. Their service to God is not absolute, but their service to themselves is! They hate Gods Laws and refuse to let Him rule over them.
Consider this: If you were a slave to a detestable brute who beat you and starved you, and made you work seven days a week, you might be grateful for one day of rest each week. You might even thank God for that day of rest to recuperate from your labours. In such circumstances, you may even reflect on the words of Daniels prayer of confession and remorse:
Dan 9:4 I prayed to the LORD my God and confessed: O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps His COVENANT OF LOVE with all who love Him and obey His Command[ments], we have sinned and done wrong. We have been wicked and have rebelled; we have turned away from your commands and Laws. We have not listened to Your servants the prophets, who spoke in your Name to our kings, our princes and our fathers, and to all the people of the land. Lord, you are righteous, but this day we are covered in shame the men of Judah and the people of Jerusalem and all Israel, both near and far, in all the countries where you have scattered us because of our unfaithfulness to you. V10 We have not obeyed the LORD our God or kept the Laws He gave us through his servants the prophets. All Israel has transgressed your Law and turned away, refusing to obey you. Therefore the curses and sworn judgments written in the Law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against you.
What Daniel saw with his own eyes lead him to believe that no slaughter on earth or under heaven could compare with this. God kept His COVENANT OF LOVE, as Daniel stated, but the people didnt. The blessings under this Covenant were clear, and so were the curses. V12 You have fulfilled the words spoken against us and against our rulers by bringing upon us great disaster. Under the whole heaven nothing has ever been done like what has been done to Jerusalem. Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us, yet we have not sought the favour of the LORD our God by turning from our sins and giving attention to your truth. The LORD did not hesitate to bring the disaster upon us, for the LORD our God is righteous in everything He does; yet we have not obeyed Him.
Daniel probably thought it could not get any worse when he said nothing like this was ever done under the whole heaven. Yet Christ spoke of a worse time: Matt 24:21 For then there will be great distress, unequalled from the beginning of the world until now and never to be equalled again. God wants us all to know that He will fulfill these words. Many people today have heard in their own lifetimes of disgusting atrocities, for example the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia, when this monster mercilessly slaughtered his own people. Youve probably seen footage of the machete-wielders in Africa. Yet all these things will be paled when Christs words are fulfilled. At that time, during the reign of the four kingdoms of gold, silver, bronze and iron, the God of heaven will set up a Kingdom that will never be destroyed. In days to come, you will be very thankful for this promise.
In the Churches of God, if any man thinks he is something when he is nothing, and if he exalts himself over the brothers of Christ, then rest assured, he will come crashing to the ground! God says The nations are a mere drop in the bucket and are less than worthless. Peter said, What manner of man ought you to be? Christ said, He who would be greatest will be least. Paul said, If anyone thinks he is wise, let him become a fool. And many other words in the Bible so describe the arrogance of humanity, and particularly those who profess to know God.
WHEN AND WHERE?
When and where should the Passover be kept? Is it permissible to keep it as the Israelites did in Egypt? Or should it only be observed at the Tabernacle or Temple? According to most Jewish people today, the requirement doesnt exist in the absence of a place where God chooses to place His name. Consequently, they have adopted a man-devised procedure, which has nothing to do with the Passover. For over 1900 years the Jewish people have not kept the Passover in accordance with Gods instructions.
Gods instructions were clear when He first proclaimed the keeping of the Passover in Egypt. This is what He said: Ex 12:3 Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household. V5 The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats. Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight. Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the door-frames of the houses where they eat the lambs. V13 The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, I will PASS OVER you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt. This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to the LORD a lasting ordinance.
Well that should have been clear enough, but Moses reiterated in V21-23, and said this in V24 Obey these instructions as a lasting ordinance for you and your descendants. When you enter the land that the LORD will give you as He promised, observe this ceremony. And when your children ask you, What does this ceremony mean to you? then tell them, It is the Passover sacrifice to the LORD, who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt and spared our homes when He struck down the Egyptians.
Now a quick reading of the requirements in the Law of Moses might suggest that God changed this ordinance, forbidding the observance of the Passover ceremony anywhere except the Tabernacle or Temple. Since the blood of the Messiah was the means of opening the way to the Most Holy Place (referred to when the veil was torn from top to bottom at His death), a time was foreshadowed when neither the Temple or the Tabernacle would exist.
It was the Levite Barnabus that declared this: Heb 9:8 The Holy Spirit was showing by this that the way into the Most Holy Place had not been disclosed as long as the first Tabernacle was still standing. He was explaining that the high priest could only enter the Most Holy Place once a year and never without blood (V7). Now we find the continuing theme in V9 This is an illustration for the present time , whatever follows is for a future time indicating that the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the conscience of the worshipper. They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings external regulations applying UNTIL the time of the NEW ORDER.
It should be pointed out that the high priest was only permitted to enter the Most Holy Place on the Day of Atonement. Yet we find that a certain group of people have been given certain rights through the blood of their Passover Lamb to enter the Most Holy Place: Heb 10:19 Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, His body, and since we have a great Priest over the House of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. V25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another and all the more as we see the Day approaching.
Which day would this be? Its certainly a Day yet in the future when originally written. The reference is found in the same chapter: Heb 10:12 But when this Priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, He sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time He waits for His enemies to be made His footstool, because by one sacrifice He has made perfect for ever those who are being made holy. The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First He says: This is the covenant I will make with them AFTER THAT TIME, says the Lord. I will put My Laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds. Then He adds, Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.
Clearly, Christ is presently sitting on the throne of the Father, at His right hand, and He is waiting! The Book of Acts makes this clear: Acts 3:21 He must remain in heaven UNTIL the time comes for God to restore everything. And this will usher in the time when all His enemies are put under His feet: 1Cor 15:24 Then the end will come, when He hands over the Kingdom to God the Father, after He has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet.
And again the Day is mentioned, here in Mal 4:1 Surely the Day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that Day that is coming will set them on fire, says the LORD Almighty. Not a root or branch will be left to them. But for you who revere My Name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the Day when I do these things, says the LORD Almighty.
In Heb 10:22 we find a reference to having our bodies washed in pure water. Anciently, the high priest had to bath before entering the Most Holy Place. On the most famous Passover of all, Christ and all the apostles bathed before the Passover ceremony. They were all clean, yet Christ washed their feet (only the prophet John recorded this). It was like a mini-baptism that prepared them for the readiness that comes from the Gospel of peace (Eph 6:15). For those who are being made holy, John recorded this: 1John 3:6 This is the One who came by water and blood Jesus Christ. He did not come by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit of God that testifies, because the Spirit is Truth. For there are three that testify: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and the three are in agreement. (For those who are using the KJV, ignore V7 which is yet another addition by the Gentiles to promote their trinity doctrine).
It could be suggested that Christ abolished the Passover in the form prescribed by God to the whole House of Israel. This would be very convenient for all those who call themselves Christian and who insist they have the corner on salvation. Well lets see what the prophets have to say concerning the future of the Tribes of Israel and the Temple. First of all, lets understand where the dwelling-place of God will be: Eze 43:1 Then the man brought me to the gate facing east, and I saw the glory of the God of Israel coming from the east. His voice was like the roar of rushing waters, and the land was radiant with His glory. The vision I saw was like the vision I had seen when He came to destroy the city and like the visions I had seen by the Kebar River, and I fell face down. The glory of the LORD entered the Temple through the gate facing east. Then the Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner court, and the glory of the LORD filled the Temple. While the man was standing beside me, I heard someone speaking to me from inside the Temple. He said: Son of man, this is the place for the soles of my feet. This is where I will live among the Israelites for ever.
You will notice that the King of kings and Lord of lords, enters through the East Gate. This is also called the Kings Gate. This is the gate the Ottoman Turks sealed up in the sixth century to prevent the Messiah from entering. Later, the Moslems decided to further prevent any approach by making the outside a Moslem graveyard. The Moslems are stupid enough to believe that their graveyards would be considered sacred and an impediment to the Great God and His servants. Surely theyve read what King Josiah did to the graveyards of pagans! Read what he did to their graves (2Kings 23:16) just before he re-instituted the keeping of the Passover (V21). What Josiah did would not be politically correct today, but then neither is God politically correct in what He does! Political correctness is the device of Satan the devil!
Only the Moslems would devise such a thing! Of all the area around Jerusalem, they had to bury their wretched dead in this very spot. Do these people think that God will not meet their hostility towards Him with force? They have no idea what fury awaits them! This evil brood can play their stupid games for just a little longer.
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Notice the Kings Gate entrance is blocked, and the Moslem graves litter the foreground.
Yet another view that exhibits the atrocious conduct of the Moslems. Not only have they blocked the Kings Gate to prevent entry and desecrated the hillside with their graves, they have also build this Mosque over the Most Holy Place.
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Facing the Mount of Olives, the Kings Gate forlornly awaits the arrival of the King.
Its clear that the Moslems understood the importance of this Gate and set about to thwart God deliberately and maliciously. In addition to this, they have also taken every precaution to ensure that the Temple is never rebuilt. Those who speak of political correctness and religious freedom should realize that the Moslem agenda is to prevent anyone worshiping the one True God. They demand their rights under the banner of political correctness, but absolutely deny it to all others.
Well God has made provision for a Temple to be built. Ezekiel describes it in great detail so the builders will know what God requires of them. God has also made sure that anyone who suffers from delusions of grandeur or messianic ambitions will not attempt to clear the Temple Mount. He says, Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit (Zech 4:6).
And so Ezekiel was commissioned to describe the Temple that will be built: Eze 43:10 Son of man, describe the Temple to the people of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their sins. Let them consider the plan, and if they are ashamed of all they have done, make known to them the design of the Temple its arrangements, its exits and entrances its whole design and all its regulations and Laws. Write these down before them so that they may be faithful to its design and follow all its regulations. This is the Law of the Temple: All the surrounding area on top of the mountain will be most holy. Such is the Law of the Temple.
God left nothing to chance! He spelt it out very clearly! It should be noted that the Temple described by Ezekiel has never been built. Ezekiels message was not just for Judah but for the whole House of Israel (Eze 3:4-9, 4:4-6), even though almost all that he wrote centered on Jerusalem. Just as Christ did, Ezekiel spoke almost exclusively in parables in relation to the whole House of Israel. This will be covered in detail in the series of articles on the 12 Tribes of Israel.
Presently there is no Temple or Tabernacle on earth today for the House of Israel. Figuratively, they are presently in Egypt, and to emphasize this, God will rescue many of them and bring them back from Egypt AGAIN!
To the Jewish people now the House of Judah: You dont presently have a Temple or a Tabernacle; why do you persist in substituting a false Passover? God requires you to observe the Passover exactly as He stated prior to the Tabernacle and Temple. And yes, you did make a feeble attempt in 1999 to sacrifice a lamb outside the Temple wall. Why didnt you do as God commands you? You know only too well the requirement! Why dont you do as God requires while you still have the chance? If you want to observe the Passover under Temple Law, then go ahead and build your Tabernacle, but dont attempt to build it on the Temple Mount! You know very well what God has said: Eze 43:7 The House of Israel will never again defile My Holy Name neither they nor their kings by their prostitution and the lifeless idols of their kings at their high places. When they placed their threshold next to My threshold and their door-posts beside My door-posts, with only a wall between Me and them, they defiled My Holy Name by their detestable practices. So I destroyed them in My anger. Now let them put away from Me their prostitution and the lifeless idols of their kings and I will live among them for ever. Dont attempt to build anything beside the Mosque that is positioned over the Most Holy Place!
Contrary to all you believe, the Temple Mount does not belong to you. It belongs to someone far mightier than David. You had the chance to be custodians of this Holy Mount in 1967, but chose to relinquish it in favour of peace with the enemies of God. And if thats not enough, your leaders seem hell-bent on relinquishing title to great portions of the Promised Land AND TO THE ENEMIES OF GOD! Wake up, you silly people!
But be consoled, Jewish brothers, Christianity has fared no better! The lost ten Tribes of Israel received the knowledge of the Mighty Commander of Armies the Messiah! They molded and shaped their beliefs according to their perception of His teachings. Theyve denied the Great Power of God and substituted it for a wishy-washy doctrine of nothingness. Today, they still see the Messiah as a humble carpenter, whose image they mold and shape to their own image.
The House of Israel would be only too pleased to see the Jewish people relinquish the entire Holy Land to the Moslems and to see you captive in your own land. Their act of treachery will not go unpunished!
The Ephraimite thinking has been transported to the Holy Land by the many Americans who have migrated there. These are the ones who advocate peace with the enemies of God. These are the ones who oppose the sound thinking of the Jewish people who grieve and lament over Gods Holy City just as Ezekiel pointed out (Eze 9:4). Well, the Day of reckoning is almost upon them! Since Ephraim doesnt grieve and lament for Gods Holy Place, they should butt out or be prepared for the inevitable consequences of their actions!
Christianity has accused you, my Jewish brothers, of many things. But they refuse to acknowledge their own faults. They refuse to keep Gods Passover; instead they have substituted the pagan Gentile tradition of Easter. Are they truly ignorant of the meanings they have applied to what was formerly the Passover? Are they unaware of what their symbols mean? For example, rabbits, eggs, hot cross buns, and all the trappings of paganism? NO, THEY ARENT! Year after year, these things are revealed in the media in special feature articles at this time of the year. But service to God is not a part of their agenda.
Ezekiel made it clear that God has not abandoned the Tribes of Israel. His Great Plan includes them, and they are the ones with whom God will live for ever. But not in their present state of madness! God intends to refine them like gold and silver, and they will again be His treasured possession as in the days of Moses, so now in this endtime. But He will refine the Levites first (Mal 3:1-4) so there will be men who will bring acceptable offerings to the LORD Almighty. Only these will have the necessary permissions to enter the Most Holy Place (Heb 10:19), as in former days, so in this endtime. And those who are cleansed of their unrighteousness will join them.
By the appointment of God, these men will be the nucleus of Gods treasured possession (Mal 3:16-18). While their leader is a Levite, these people are drawn from many nations, and empowered by their Mighty Commander to enter the Most Holy Place. Now the commission of these men is to take the Message of God to the Churches of God, the Tribes of Israel, and finally the whole world. It will be a new experience for the Churches of God to receive the Testimony of Jesus and to understand prophecy instead of the prophecy they have generated from their own imaginations. Perhaps they will learn for the first time the importance of the Temple where God will live for ever.
Almighty God has made provision for those who truly desire to serve Him with all their hearts. Hes clearly identified those who serve Him and those who dont! (Mal 3:16-18). These people have made a conscious decision to serve God and to seek out where the Power of God is working. God is also holding in reserve a few thousand whom He will call to duty. And for those who sit on the fence and wait to see which side of the fence is greener will be shocked senseless at the ferocity of the events that God has prophesied.
Now many of those who associate with the Churches of God sit smugly in the congregations listening to the tripe that is dished out, knowing that it all falls far short of what the apostles and prophets predicted at the close of the six millennial days. But they still demand salvation and insist that Christ will sort out any minor errors in their doctrine when He returns. And of course, this is the thrust of the teachings of the Churches of God.
Having never understood the teachings of God or the Way of God, they have overlooked the meaning of the Days of Unleavened Bread. During this prophetic time, they will hurl out and discard their worthless doctrine and begin to understand the meaning and purpose of their existence. And to all those you have plotted against and despised the Jewish people, God has this to say: Zech 8:23 This is what the LORD Almighty says: In those days ten men from all languages and nations will take firm hold of one Jew by the edge of his robe and say, Let us go with you, because we have heard that God is with you. Its interesting that it says ten men the exact number of the rebellious tribes of Israel.
There are many things in the Scripture you have rejected that give you fair warning of what to expect. How strange that the Churches of God formerly taught from all the Scriptures, yet today have great difficulty in understanding anything. To their credit, they did understand the procedure for Passover observance according to Christs instructions not perfectly, but in a manner that was reasonably acceptable. They could not have known the prophetic implications of the Passover, since there were no prophets among them.
Gods message and instruction is clear! Those who refuse to accept the appearance of Jesus Christ as the promised Messenger of the Covenant (Mal 3:1), must serve Him in the manner prescribed by God in the land of Egypt. Central to this instruction is the observance of the Passover. It must not be kept under Temple Law while no Temple or Tabernacle is standing. God is now calling on you to observe the Passover exactly as He has instructed.
Those who have taken the Name of Christ and claim allegiance to Him must observe the Passover according to His Law. His Law is proclaimed from the real Tabernacle of which the earthly one was merely a copy (Heb 8:1-6). Those who claim the right to bear His Name must do exactly as He instructed. The Name of Christ is above every other name except of course, the Father. The Father demands that His Son is honoured! His Son, the Mighty Christ, will rain down destruction and death on all the enemies of God. And when this occurs, the Passover will take on an entirely different meaning the meaning that existed in Egypt, and continues to this day!
Those who have examined themselves and taken steps to purge out the leaven of the past which has held them captive all these years, and who recognize the baptism of John and the message he brought, who accept the Mighty Christ as their Saviour, and acknowledge that Gods Way is right, and who recognize that Christ is to deal with all the enemies of God according to Gods righteousness, should observe the Passover as Christ instructed.
When you are gathered together, preferably in a room somewhere with the door closed, you must recognize that you are there for the purpose of revering the Son of God our Passover! The room must be prepared in advance. It should be swept clean and have a table in it.
When Christ sat in the room with all the apostles, He was conveying to them a very important principle. This is found in John 13:1 It was just before the Passover feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and to to the Father. Having loved His own who were in the world, He now showed them the full extent of His love. It cannot be over-emphasized the enormous privilege, that keeping the Passover correctly, imparts to the people of God.
Christs first act, after they had all eaten their evening meal (which should be eaten at home as Paul mentioned in 1Cor 11:34), was to wash the feet of His disciples. This was to cleanse them of beliefs that are contrary to Gods Way, and to prepare them for the Gospel of peace (Eph 6:15). Christ instructed them to wash one anothers feet (John 13:14) in the future whenever they observe the Passover.
The preparation requires that the wine be decanted into a jug or decanter from which the wine can be poured out into individual glasses for each person present. This should be done outside the room so that only the wine needed for the ceremony is brought into the room. Any that is left over must be poured out on the ground. Similarly with any bread that is left over, this should be buried or suitably disposed of.
The unleavened bread should be placed on a plate, and broken up in the room when everyone is present, so that each can take a piece to eat.
Beginning with the bread, the meaning of it should be explained, and with emphasis on it being the Body of Christ, which was broken open by the scourge for our healing. Its an appropriate time to reflect on the full extent of Christs love, when He received that brutal beating.
Then the wine should be poured and passed out to everyone present. This is the blood of Christ that was poured out in order that we may live forever and inherit eternal life. Care should be taken to ensure that the wine is not carelessly spilt.
The Passover is a time to bring to remembrance all that Christ taught, and Christ summarized this in the Book of John, chapters 13-17. Its appropriate to read some or all of these words. Christs prayer in John 17:1:26 should definitely be read. After this, an appropriate hymn should be sung (Matt 26:30) and then everyone should depart for their homes.
For those who are taking the Passover alone, the foot-washing would obviously not need to be done. However, as an outward sign of obedience to God in preparing our feet for the Gospel of peace, it could prayerfully be done as an outward sign of our fidelity to our Heavenly Father.
The observance of the Passover is a solemn occasion, and should be viewed with reverence for our Great God and His Son. One man, preferably an overseer, should organize the distribution of the bread and wine and direct the proceedings as the representative of Christ.
These instructions are not designed to regulate every step of the proceedings, but to provide the correct outline. Its permissible for those present to speak and discuss the meaning behind all these things as the disciples did in Jesus presence. All discussion should precede the final part of the ceremony when Christs prayer is read and the hymn is sung.
SPECIAL NOTE: The Passover must be observed on the evening preceeding the daylight hours of the 14th Nisan.
For all those who truly desire to serve God, you should examine yourselves to see what your calling is. The vast majority of true Christians have been called to go as sheep to the slaughter just like Christ. This is noble and honourable and worthy of all praise. Their reward will be great. When the time comes, the Mighty Hand of our Heavenly Father will guide you and strengthen you for the task. You must be faithful, and face death like the Son of God. In so doing, you will provide the evidence for the final judgment, which will be handed down in your favour (Dan 7:21).
But Christ spoke of others who are not of this sheep pen. He said He must bring them also: John 10:14 I am the Good Shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know Me just as the Father knows Me and I know the Father and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there will be one flock and one shepherd. Its clear that John the Baptist came first and prepared the way for Christ. Christ built His Church (Matt 16:18), and He speaks of a time when there will be one flock and one shepherd. Those with rational minds would have to wonder how this could be at the present moment. There are many shepherds and many flocks; all of them vying for precedence over the others.
But Christ has made plans to implement exactly what He said! He would call to duty others who were not of this sheep pen, and they would hear His voice (literally!). Christ often spoke of those who had ears to hear should hear! He mentions it in these verses: Matt 11:11 I tell you the truth: Among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now, the Kingdom of Heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it. For all the Prophets (Neviim) AND the Law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come. HE WHO HAS EARS, LET HIM HEAR.
We shouldnt have any illusions about what it will require to prepare the way for Christ. John the Baptist was a forceful man who feared no-one, not even Herod! But he was not the endtime Elijah and he knew it (John 1:21) and admitted it. By using His famous words He who has ears, let him hear, Christ was telling us He was speaking in parables. He was referring to the endtime Elijah who will restore the Law of Moses and reveal all that the Prophets (Neviim) have stated. Its through this ministry that forceful men will lay hold of the Kingdom of God, and will forcefully advance it. All preparation will be made to prepare the Way for Christ. And finally, Christ Himself will go out to fight (Zech 14:1-3), and Judah too will fight (V14) for the Kingdom of God.
It may seem strange to some, in the light of what Christ taught, to be speaking of the Kingdom of Heaven forcefully advancing, and forceful men taking hold of it, but this is exactly what happened in the days of the prophet David.
The Kingdom of God must begin like a tiny mustard seed and grow into a great tree. Its like the leavening that is mixed into a large quantity of flour and grows to fill the whole lump (Luke 13:18-20). Human beings will establish the Kingdom of God when the time comes (Rev 12:10), and this is when Christ calls to duty those who will establish it (V13). The offspring of this woman will be left to face the full fury of Satan the devil (V17). The offspring are the sheep of the sheep pen. They must go as sheep to the slaughter (Rom 8:36, Ps 44:22, Rev 13:10).
Christ was of the House of David; it was the House of David who gave birth to Him, and Christ made this very plain in Rev 22:16. The House of David was the linage of David rather than the whole tribe of Judah. Gods own tribe, the Levites (whom God took in place of the firstborn) remained with the House of David. Some may say, Im too old or too weak to fight for the Kingdom of God! Im just a sheep for the slaughter! God has made provision for our physical inadequacies. This is what He says: Zech 12:8 On that day the LORD will shield those who live in Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them will be like David, and the House of David will be like God, like the Angel of the LORD going before them. On that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem. Verses 12-14 describe those from the House of David and the Levites.
Though this explanation is brief, much more is described in the various articles at the Zion Ministry website. You have to decide where God is doing this Work and whether you will believe all that God has said. The Book of Malachi describes this Ministry and no other! You decide for yourselves.
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