Fred R. Coulter—June 20, 2009

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When we look and we think about the confusion in religions in the world.

  • How did all of that come about?
  • Where do you find the Truth?
  • Where is God?
  • And how do you find your way out of all of this confusion?

Because we know that the Bible says, in 1-Corinthians 14:33, that 'God is not the author of confusion'; yet even in Christianity, there is a lot of confusion.

So how is it that everyone claiming to follow the Bible, end up with so many different doctrines? So then, how can you find the Truth out of the Bible by studying it when others study it and they can't find it? So that presents a real quandary. So how do you study the Bible?

  • You've got to prove that the Bible is the Word of God.

When you're listening to a preacher, when you're listening to a minister, here is a guide. Let's come here to Isaiah 8:19 and let's see there'll be several things here for us to understand: "And when they shall say to you, 'Seek unto them that have familiar spirits… [We have a lot of new-age religion out there today, weird and strange things with that; and that's all sourced in familiar spirits or demonic spirits.] …and to wizards who peep and mutter'…[because the question is:] …—but should not a people seek unto their God? Should the dead be sought on behalf of the living?" We also have that, too. In some religions you pray for your relatives who have died, or you pray to your relatives who have died. And yet the Bible says, 'The dead know nothing.' When someone dies, their thoughts cease. So how can you pray to them?

Here is the key, when someone says, 'Oh, you need to be religious.' Religious of itself is not the solution; that's part of the problem. You need to be a Scripturalist, that is according to the Word of God. So here's the admonition, v 20: "To the law and to the testimony!.... [Now the law is the Old Testament. The testimony, as we will see in just a second here, refers to the New Testament.] (So here is the guide, here is the first key): …If they do not speak according to this Word, it is because there is no light in them." So they have to speak according to the Word. Now we'll see a little later that they have to rightly divide the Word, and that's all part of studying the Bible.

Let's come back here just a couple verses—v 16: "'Bind up the testimony, seal the law among My disciples…. [Now that is a prophecy of the New Testament, because (as we will see), the New Testament seals the Word of God making it complete.] …And I will wait upon the LORD, who hides His face from the house of Jacob; and I will trust in Him'" (vs 16-17). So this is showing another phenomena, which is this: Even though you can understand the Word of God because you know how to study—and we will see some of the other reasons why—other people can't. And the secret is right there in that last phrase, 'I will trust in Him.' You will trust in God, so those are the things that give us the start.

  • You must obey God.

Let's come to Psalm 111, because this tells us a real key: the attitude that we need to have. Verse 1: "Praise the LORD!.... [Don't come with a downing skeptical way, but praise the Lord.] …I will praise the LORD with my whole heart… [That's how we are to approach God: with all our heart.] …in the council of the upright and in the congregation. The works of the LORD are great… [So part of this also has, not only in obedience, but also to recognize that God is Creator. And everything that He has created is absolutely magnificent, when you understand it. I can never get over how evolutionists and atheists like to say, 'Well, in the beginning there was the big bang.' I think God would tell them, 'You get your own big bang'—because they start with the universe and that's what God has made; and part of the great works that He has contained right here in the Bible; inspiring the Bible, the Word of God. And we'll show some other things of that in just a little bit here.] …sought out by all those who have pleasure in them. His work is glory and majesty; and His righteousness endures forever" (vs 1-3). We're going to see righteousness also has to do with commandments. Righteousness also has to do with obedience.

"He has made a memorial for His wonderful works; the LORD is gracious and full of compassion…. [And it's from Him that we receive forgiveness, it's from Him that we can come for comfort.] …He has given food to those who fear Him… [Now there's physical food, there's spiritual food. Physical food is to live on. The spiritual food is to know God and draw close to Him.] …He will always be mindful of His covenant…. [So God will never forsake people, though they forsake Him and He has to punish them, He will never forsake His people.] …He has shown His people the power of His works, to give to them the inheritance of the nations…. [So here we have a little prophecy concerning the ultimate purpose of why we're here. And of course it's contained in the Word of God.] …The works of His hands are truth and judgment…" (vs 4-7). Everything that God has done is in truth. God is true, as we'll see His Word is true, and we also can see that He cannot lie. That's an important thing to understand.

Hold your place here and come to the New Testament. Let's come to the book of Titus. This is an epistle that Paul wrote to one of the ministers that worked with him. Here's how we also need to approach the Word of God. Even though there are some translations, which leave a lot to be desired and have verses and translations that are not good, the truth is God has made sure that in any translation there is the basic Truth for salvation that has been preserved. But the basis of God's Word is Truth. Now here's why.

Titus 1:1 (pg 1,224): "Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect and the knowledge of the Truth… [Now this is what we are to seek for: the knowledge of the Truth. If you're seeking for the Truth of the Scriptures, then you apply the right understanding of it that you are a Scripturalist. You're not a Catholic, you're not a Protestant, you're not a Baptist, you're not an Orthodox, but you're are a Scripturalist. Everything that you know about God comes from the Scriptures. Everything that you do in serving God should be according to the Scriptures, and so God has given:] …the knowledge of the Truth that is according to Godliness." And that's the whole purpose of it that we end up with Godly character, Godly understanding. And what does this lead to?

Verse 2: "In the hope of eternal life..." That's the whole purpose, because God has put it in the nature of human beings that they want to live beyond their human life. But what is the truth of how human beings can do that? Some religions have the reincarnation. And when the President killed a fly the other day, Peter was all upset because he may have killed a Buddhist who was reincarnated in the form of a fly to try and make his life better so that he can reach Nirvana in the end run. Christian religions, as well as other pagan religions, say you go to heaven or you go to hell, or you go to purgatory. But the Bible has said of David, 'He is not ascended into heaven.' And the Bible tells us, 'The soul that sins shall die.' So if you die and your soul dies with you, how can your soul go to heaven? Jesus said, 'No one has ascended into heaven, but the One Who came down from heaven,' referring to Himself. So 'the hope of eternal life' is contained in the Bible and that hope, as you will see as you study the Bible, is the hope of the resurrection from the dead.

Now let's continue on. "In the hope of eternal life, which God Who cannot lie… [You need to understand, God cannot lie, because He is Holy, He is Righteous, whatever He does is in Truth, and goodness. He cannot lie.] …promised before the ages of time" (v 2). So God has a plan that He's working with, and the whole purpose of studying the Bible is to find out:

  • What is the plan of God?
  • What is God doing?
  • Who am I?
  • Where am I going?
  • Why am I here?
  • What is the purpose in my life?

And all of that is all contained in the Word of God.

Now let's come back to Psalm 111:7: "The works of His hands are Truth and judgment; all His commandments are sure. They stand fast forever and ever; they are done in Truth and uprightness" (vs 7-8). So this tells us something else. This tells us exactly what Jesus said. Now if you've been a Protestant or if you've been a Catholic, you have heard many, many, many times that the law has been done away.

Let's come to Matthew 5 and let's see what Jesus said. Let's understand something that's important, too. The Bible teaches, which you will find as you study the Bible even more and put the Scriptures together the way that they should be, that the One Who became Jesus Christ was actually the Lord God of the Old Testament. So when He was manifested in the flesh, born of the virgin Mary, grew up, and now He's right around thirty-years-old, He's beginning His ministry. Here is part of how to study the Bible.

  • What did Jesus say?
  • Did Jesus say He came to do away with the law?
  • Did Jesus say you no longer have to keep anything in the Old Testament?
  • Did Jesus say the commandments were a curse, as a lot of people have been taught from the pulpit?

What you're going to find out is: No! He didn't say any of that. Let's read it, Matthew 5:17: "'Do not think… [Now let me ask you the question. What does that mean? It means do not let the thought enter your mind; do not suppose. And if someone tells you that the law has been done away, don't believe it.] …Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets… [And that's what you hear so many times, almost every Sunday in most of the Protestant churches. Now we're going to see a very important facet because they believe that. That's why they don't understand the Bible, because they say that. Now if Jesus said] …Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets… [and a minister stands up in a pulpit and says, 'Jesus did away with the law, it's been abolished.' Some Protestant theologians say, 'Everyone of the 613 commandments in the Old Testament have been nailed to the cross, and no longer have any affect.' What did Jesus say?] …Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill.'"

So then here comes the misinterpretation. 'To fulfill means that He did away with it.' But that's not the meaning. What does it mean to fulfill? If you have a glass that's half filled with water and you fill it to the top, you have filled it to the full—correct? Now that's what fulfill means. It doesn't mean to do away, but to fulfill. Another way of expressing it is to complete. What did we read back there in Isaiah 8? The disciples were to complete the law. In other words, those who wrote the New Testament were prophesied by Isaiah (chapter 8) that they would complete the law. And Jesus came to complete the law, to fulfill prophecies concerning Himself, and to give the law its spiritual intent. We'll get to that just a little bit later.

Verse 19—Now I want you to think about this: Jesus Christ, the Lord of the New Testament, also the Lord God of the Old Testament, is saying: "'Therefore, whoever shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven…" Now what is the commandment that most people think is the least?—especially those who profess Christianity. Well, there are actually two of the Ten Commandments that they consider the least.

  • The fourth commandment: Remember the Sabbath to keep it Holy.
  • The second commandment: You shall not make unto yourself any graven image of any likeness of anything, in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the waters under the earth.

So if someone comes in and says, 'Well, the Sabbath commandment has been done away; therefore, we keep Sunday.' And they call it the Lord's day. And we'll see a little later, Jesus said He was Lord of the Sabbath and if He is Lord of the Sabbath, which day is the Lord's day? Is it not the Sabbath? Yes!

So if you teach men that, Christ is going to say, 'You're the least in the kingdom of heaven,' which means that you won't be there (we'll see that a little later). " …but whoever shall practice and teach them… [Now that's a different situation—isn't it?] …this one shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven" (v 19).

Now let's come back to Psalm 111 and as we're going through this study, look at the method on how we are studying this and we'll see how that's defined a little later. We're going from Scripture to Scripture to have Truth verify Truth. Psalm 111:7: "The works of His hands are truth and judgment; all His commandments are sure. They stand fast forever and ever… [So by this statement, this tells us what? You cannot abolish them, because they stand forever and ever—correct? How can you abolish something that is eternal? You cannot.] (Furthermore): …they are done in Truth and uprightness" (vs 7-8).

Some people even go to the extreme of saying that God gave the commandments—and in particularly the Sabbath commandment—to the Jews as a curse upon them. Well, we will see the Sabbath is to be a delight, not a curse. "…done in Truth and uprightness. He sent redemption unto His people; He has commanded His covenant forever; Holy and Awesome is His name…. [Now an alternate reading is Reverend. So any man who calls himself 'reverend' and says he represents Christ, is taking a name of God to call himself by the term 'reverend.'] (v 10 gives the key to tie all of this together): …The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom… [That you love God, you fear Him, and you want to do His will. So if you're having a hungering and thirsting after the Word of God, and you want to know what the Bible really says, hear is the key: You fear God, that's the beginning. That's where you start.] (Next): …a good understanding have all those who do His commandments" (vs 9-10).

Doesn't sound very much like anything has been done away, right? Right. Now let's come back to the New Testament again here, and let's come to Matthew 4, and let's see what else Jesus said. Let's understand something: Jesus came to bring the knowledge of God's way for the New Covenant, the New Testament—is that not right? We are also going to see a little later that in studying the Bible, Jesus said that if we don't do the Words that He has given, then those very Words that we don't do are going to judge us.

Now let's see what He said when He was tempted here by Satan the devil. Because since mankind accepted Satan the devil as their god, and he's the author of all the religions of the world, then Jesus, also as a human being, had to subject Himself to the temptation of Satan the devil to prove that, as God in the flesh, He was going to obey the Father. So after He was baptized:

Matthew 4:1: "Then Jesus was led up into the wilderness by the Spirit in order to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted for forty days and forty nights, afterwards He was famished…. [Why did He fast forty days and forty nights? So that He would not rely on any of His physical attributes in trying to resist Satan the devil. In other words, He's showing a lesson here that you have to come close to God in order to resist the devil. And you cannot resist the devil and his temptations, and since he's the god of this world most the world follows him. As a matter of fact it says in the prophecy he's 'deceiving the whole world.' Then He had to, with the least amount of physical strength in His being, to spiritually resist Satan the devil.] …And when the tempter came to Him, he said, 'If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread'" (vs 1-3).

Well, Jesus could do that, no problem. Why didn't Jesus do it? Well, number one, He was to obey the Father—correct? If He obeyed Satan the devil, He would be disobeying the Father—is that not true? And in doing so, then He would be breaking the commandments of God, which are sure and stand fast forever. Notice Jesus answer: "But He answered and said, 'It is written, "Man… [Now He's not talking about you or me, He's talking about Himself in the commandment given by God to the children of Israel, who were human beings. Now since He was God manifested in the flesh, after having fasted for forty days and forty nights, what is the strength of what He is going to do?] …Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God"'" (v 4).

Now that's saying an awful lot. And with that He's telling us you can't come and pick and choose. 'Oh, I like this Scripture, I don't like this one. Oh, I like this commandment, but I don't like this one.' No, 'by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.' Now let me just say here what you have with the Bible, is the recorded Word of God which He spoke to Moses, He spoke to His prophets, and Jesus personally spoke and taught His disciples. There it is right there. And as I have said on some occasions, that if you want to know what would Jesus tell you if He could come down and sit down right before you and you would say, "Oh, I'll believe God if He'll come down and tell me.' Like one man said, 'Oh, I'll keep the Sabbath if Jesus comes down and tells me.' Well, Jesus did! It's recorded. But that's just an excuse.

Now let's come to John 14; let's see clearly what Jesus said. You hear an awful lot about the love of God—don't you? Yes! And most of the time people think if you love God you don't have to keep His commandments; 'All you have to do is love God and every thing's going to be fine.' Well, let's see what Jesus said here. John 14:15—one simple verse: "'If you love Me, keep the commandments… [So commandment keeping is the key.] …namely, My commandments.'" Now that's emphatic in the Greek. Since He is the One Who spoke to Moses as Lord God of the Old Testament, and spoke to the prophets, and came in the flesh and spoke to His disciples, every one of the commandments—Old Testament and New Testament, with the exception of the priestly rituals for the New Testament—have been fulfilled in the ministry of Christ. But all the rest of the commandments are to be kept. That's why 'a good understanding have they who keep His commandments,' or practice His commandments, or do His commandments.

Now let's come to the Epistle of 1-John. We'll see something very interesting here, right close after the book of Acts in the original order of the Bible. Here is another basic Scripture which tells us that if you want to know about God, you've got to obey Him, you've got to love Him. 1-John 5:2 (pg 1,139): "By this standard we know that we love the children of God: when we love God and keep His commandments…. [So love and commandment keeping go together like a hand and glove. You can't have one without the other. Give you a good example: if you tell your wife or your husband, 'I love you,' but you go commit adultery, you have transgressed the commandment against God and against the marriage covenant, and you're really expressing the fact that you don't love your husband or wife.] …For this is the love of God: that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome" (vs 2-3).

Now, let's take a quick summary of the Ten Commandments. Come back to Exodus 20. When we get there and we read them, because we're going to read all the Ten Commandments, and I want you to ask the question, which commandment is burdensome? I think you will find that none of them are. Directly from the mouth of God given to the children of Israel at Mt. Sinai, after He brought them out of the land of Egypt. Exodus 20:1: "And God spoke all these words, saying, 'I am the Lord your God, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage…. [None of the gods of Egypt brought them out—did they? God alone brought them out. So And since He is greater than all of the man-made gods, greater than all of the demonic gods, as proven by the plagues and miracles that He showed in Egypt, in the killing of the firstborn, He says]: …You shall have no other gods before Me'" (vs 1-3).

Now is that commandment hard to understand? It's like one man said, 'Well, you know, I believe the Bible insofar as it's correctly translated.' Well, this one is, and I think every Bible that has ever been printed has this correct: 'You have shall no other gods before Me.' Yet they have a religion contrary to the Bible, because when you use that as a criteria, then you can pick and choose.

Now here this further defines it with the second commandment. Ask yourself the question, is it hard to keep the first commandment? No, all you have to do is live by the Words of God. Now then He further defines it v 4, because people—second commandment here—they like to have idols, they like to have crosses, crucifixes, and how many cars have you seen where someone has a rosary hanging down from the rear view mirror, as a sign of good luck. Now we need to think about that for a minute. If you're superstitious and think that that will bring you good luck, how can an idol, which a cross is, bring good luck to you from God, Who says don't make any graven image? It's contrary.

So the second commandment reads: "'You shall not make for yourselves any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in the heavens above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters under the earth…. [Don't even make it.] …You shall not bow yourself down to them, nor serve them, for I, the LORD your God am a jealous God…'" (vs 4-5). He's Creator,

  • He gave you life,
  • He gave you thought,
  • He created all human beings,
  • He created the heavens and the earth,
  • all the vast galaxies that are there,
  • everything that is on the earth God has created

So if someone comes along like the Dalai Lama, as I saw in an interview of the Dalai Lama, and he serves other gods and tells people to worship other gods. The reporter who was doing the interview was asking him, 'How do you know what you should do?' And he laughed and he smiled, and he pointed to a little fat Buddha on his desk, an idol, and he says, 'That's my boss.'

Now let me ask you another question: What if you built a fantastic house and someone came along and said, 'You didn't plan this and you didn't build it'? Wouldn't you be angry when it would be publicly known that you built this house, you planned it, you designed it, you got the building permit, you got all the inspections? Everything was signed off. You built the house. Someone else comes along and says, 'Oh, Joe Blow down the street built it. It belongs to him, it doesn't belong to you.' Now how would you react? Would you not be jealous? This is the kind of jealousy that God has. The stupidity of bowing down to an idol and yet you go into cathedrals, what do you see? Idols of saints, you see candles that are burning, you see crosses, you see crucifixes. That's why He's a jealous God.

Now notice what happens: "'…visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me… [Now let's look at that last phrase there: 'those who hate Me.' What does this tell us? Compare that with what we read in 1-John 5:3, 'this is the love of God that we keep His commandments and His commandments are not burdensome.' If you don't keep His commandments, God is telling you, you hate Him. You may say, 'No, I don't hate God.' Well, how many idols do you have? crosses? crucifixes? pictures of Jesus? etc.—or if you belong to any other religion? Now notice what you do as consequences with your children:] …visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation…'" (v 5).

Let me ask you to do a little survey to prove the Bible true. Take not only the Ten Commandments, but in particularly these first two commandments:

  • You shall have no other gods before Me.
  • You shall not make any graven image of any likeness in heaven above, the earth beneath, and the waters under the earth.

And you go to the History Channel or you go National Geographic Channel when they're doing a special on people that live in this country, or live in that county, and you analyze how are their lives and analyze it with the commandment.

  • Do they have the right God or other gods?
  • Do they have idols and statues?
  • Are they superstitious and worship demons?
  • What is their country like?
  • What are their families like?
  • What are their children like?
  • Are the children suffering because of that and other countries and lands? Yes, indeed.

Because the truth of the matter, as you will learn as you study the Bible, God expects everyone in the world to keep His commandments in the letter of the law. So here we have this second commandment.

But notice, v 6: "'But showing mercy… [Everyone wants mercy, oh, yes. 'God forgive me my sins.' But if you're living in sin, how can He forgive your sins?] …But showing mercy to thousands of those who love Me and keep My commandments…. [Now that's right in the Ten Commandments, and don't we have that right there that we read in John 14:15: 'If you love Me, keep My commandments.' And do we not have that in 1-John 5:2-3? Yes, indeed.] …those who love Me and keep My commandments.'" So there's the whole second commandment.

And just as something for you to investigate: Now, if you are a Catholic or consider yourself a good Catholic—because a lot of Catholics consider themselves good Catholics, or are considered good Catholics—I want you to get out your catechism book and I want you to read their explanation of the commandments of God in the catechism book. And it's different from here in Exo. 20.

Now someone's going to say, 'Oh, you're reading out of a Protestant Bible,' Well, no I'm not. However, Catholics have their own approved Bible, with the pope's imprimatur on it. In other words he's saying, 'This is okay to read.' So if you have the English translation of the New Jerusalem Bible, which is Catholic, or the New American Standard Version, which is Catholic, or the Douay Version, which is Catholic, go to Exo. 20 and guess what you will find? You'll find the second commandment against idols in the Bible.

When you go and compare that with the catechism book, the second commandment has been taken away. They say the second commandment is the third. So this is very important. So then you have to ask the question: how can Catholics, who do not keep the commandments of God, have understanding of the Word of God? Because God declares a 'good understanding have all those who keep His commandments.' So if you want to know how to understand the Bible, the very first thing to do then is learn the commandments of God and begin keeping them. That's the very first thing.

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We are in Exodus 20:7 and we are at the third commandment:

  • "'You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.'"

Now when you read that, that third commandment, which in the catechism, Catholic version, is the second commandment, what do you immediately think of? Well, sports figures, people who get angry and swear and curse. They're taking God's name in vain, but what's another way of taking God's name in vain? Doing the opposite of what He said. For example: if a minister or a priest stands in the pulpit and says, 'God has abolished the law,' and he says so in the name of the Lord—is that not taking the name of God in vain? If you're lying in God's name—are you not taking His name in vain? Of course. There are many ways of taking God's name in vain. How about if you twist and turn the Scripture, and say, 'God said,' when God didn't say? So this has a lot more to do than just swearing and cursing on the golf course, or the football game, or a baseball game, or getting mad at your neighbor and shaking your fist at him and calling him all kinds of names. That's bad enough, but when it comes in smooth, pleasant words from a pulpit by someone who is supposed to be a teacher of God, and is teaching lies in the name of God, that's worse.

  • Now here's the other commandment that they do not like, the fourth commandment.

Let me just mention this: the second commandment is the longest commandment of the ten, a little longer than the fourth commandment. The fourth commandment has to do with the Sabbath and it's the second longest. Verse 8: "Remember the Sabbath day…" Now I'm not going to go into a whole series on the Sabbath day, but except to say, the Sabbath is the seventh day called Saturday except in Europe, because they have finagled the calendar around so that Monday is the first day of the week; Saturday is the sixth day of the week; and blessed lo-and-behold Sunday is the seventh day of the week. So if you are in Europe and you hear someone say concerning the seventh day, you're thinking that's Sunday, because they have changed the calendar and they are lying to you, so that you can continue in the deception that you think you're Sunday-keeping is Sabbath-keeping.

Now that's how delusional and how far men have gone to reject God and to make it appear that Sunday is the day that should be kept, when even according as we have in one of the appendices of the Bible here, Rome's Challenge to the Protestants, where they show that there is not one Scripture in the Old or New Testament authorizing the observance of Sunday. It was written under the auspices of Cardinal Gibbon in 1893 in the Baltimore Sun. And it's interesting, there are four articles covering that, and every one of them was published on the Sabbath day. It came out on Saturday's paper. Very ironic—isn't it?

And yet now, they have the gall in Europe to show that they're a Christian nation, or Christian nations, that Sunday's the seventh day of the week. Well, little kiddies growing up, how are they ever going to know? And if you have had that kind of calendar all your life, and if the church teaches you that, 'Well, Sunday's the seventh day. That's why we're going to see a little later on you have to prove all things. That's why you have to go by the Truth of what the Bible says, but I think it's very interesting because in that appendices that we have of Rome's Challenge in the Bible, he specifically says that the seventh day is Saturday, 'a day which we never keep.' And that it was of human devising of the Catholic Church that brought it to the Christian church, because for 300-years before the beginning of the Roman Catholic Church under the pagan emperor Constantine—it wasn't started by the apostles—the true Church of God kept the seventh day of the week as a day of worship.

So with that caveat, let's read concerning the Sabbath day: "'Remember the Sabbath day to keep it Holy…. [That's Saturday. To keep it Holy means that you're not to work. Now here's what's so important concerning the Sabbath day, as listed here] …Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God….'" (vs 8-10). Because Genesis 2 shows that He made it holy, He blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it. And the Sabbath is the key in your understanding the Bible. We'll talk a little bit more about the Bible and how we know it's the Word of God, and so forth, next time. But if you're seeking God, the first thing you need to do is start keeping the commandments.

Now I remember a man I was talking to one time, and he was kind of at the crossroads there, and he was debating in his mind about the Sabbath and Sunday, and he was listening to what was said on the radio at that time about the Sabbath day, and reading the literature about the Sabbath day. But he was also going to his Baptist Church and hearing about the first day of the week. So he says, 'Well, I really don't know what to do.' So I told him, I said, 'Why don't you try this. Why don't you keep the seventh day Saturday, set it aside to keep it Holy, keep it at home. And for a whole month on every Sabbath day, study about the Sabbath in the Bible.' And I said, 'At the end of a month, I'm pretty convinced that you'll understand about the Sabbath.' So after that he said, 'Yes, I understand about the Sabbath.' Perfect example of: if you keep the commandments, you will have a good understanding. If you don't keep the commandments, you won't.

"'Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God….'" (vs 9-10). What does the word ofdenote? It denotes ownership. God owns it; it is His. Since it is His, man cannot come along after the fact and legislate something else. And as you will see in searching to understand about the Word of God, and find God, and how to understand the Bible, the Sabbath will be the key pivotal point for you as well.

"'…In it you shall not do any work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter; your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your livestock, nor the stranger within your gates; for in six days… [Here's the reason God commanded the Sabbath.] …for in six days the LORD made the heaven and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore, the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and sanctified it'" (vs 10-11). So in keeping the Sabbath you always know who the Creator is. And in keeping the Sabbath day, then you begin to develop the right relationship with God.

So in your search for the Truth, you might try what I suggested to that man. Now if you're searching for the Truth, here's a promise. Let's come back here to Matthew 7:7 (pg 965). Here's what you need to do and we'll come back to this again. But if you're trying to seek God and trying to understand the Bible, here is the promise. But that promise is predicated upon the fact, when you come to the understanding about a commandment of God, are you going to keep it? If you don't keep it, you're not going to understand regardless of what the commandment is. If you're living in sin and are shacking up with someone, and you're trying to find out about God, God says, 'You shall not commit adultery.' You better get out of that adulterous relationship. Whatever the commandment may be. If you have idols in your house you need to get rid of them.

Matthew 7:7: "'Ask, and it shall be given to you…. [So you've got to pray to God. It's not just an intellectual matter that you're going through, and you're going to read the Bible, and you're going to understand it, just like you would read a novel. The Bible is not designed that way. The keys in understanding the Bible, we're seeing right now is: Keep the commandments of God.

So if you're seeking God:] …Ask, and it shall be given to you. Seek, and you shall find. Knock, and it shall be opened to you.'" (v 7). So if you're really honest, if you're really seeking God—now if you're trying to seek a religion, or if you're trying to seek a way to assuage your guilty conscience, and you don't repent, then it's not going to do you any good. That's why so many people start, but never finish. Now notice these are promises. It also means in the Greek: ask, and keep on asking. You don't quit, you don't just ask once and give up, you're always asking God all the time. And it shall be given to you, and you will find as you continue that, God will give you understanding, God will help you.

Seek, and the Greek means keep on seeking, and you shall find. You're not going to find it all at once, because you see, what you have to do is admit this: that Satan the devil has blinded your eyes by false teachings and living in the world. So if you really want to seek God, then you have to do it God's way.

Knock, and keep on knocking, and it shall be opened to you. For here's the promise: "'For everyone who asks receives… [Now if you ask:

  • you have to ask in faith,
  • you have to ask in belief,
  • you have to ask in obedience.]

…and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it shall be opened'" (v 8). So if you want to understand the Bible by studying it, the Sabbath day becomes a key day. So if you use that day every week, which is Saturday today, and you follow what the commandment says, and you study the Bible to understand the Word of God, and you ask God in prayer to help you understand, you will.

Let's look at the other side of coin of how the Sabbath day keeps us in contact with God as Creator. Look at those who do not keep the Sabbath. How many have given up on God as Creator, but believe in evolution. Or even those who are Sunday-keepers, because Sunday is not the Sabbath, you have to understand that. They are gradually accepting phases of creation that's leading them off into evolution. So it's very important. One other thing that's important concerning the Sabbath is this:

  • God spiritually puts His presence into the Sabbath, so He can fellowship with His people.
  • He can answers the prayers of those who are seeking Him.
  • He can bring them to Him, spiritually draw them.

Now we'll see that in a little bit, that's all understanding about the way of God.

Now let's look at the way that the world treats the Sabbath, which by the way is observed from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday, not midnight to midnight. So when are all the activities for most of the children growing up, especially in middle school and high school? Friday nights. So Satan has made this society to have fun on Friday nights, and it carries over into adult life, and what do they do? They go out Friday nights to dancing, to bars, to rock concerts. And what happens on those Friday nights? A lot of adultery, a lot of fornication, a lot of drugs, pot smoking, and all of that.

Now just stop and think about this, what if you ran a survey on a Friday night after a great, colossal rock concert and you asked them, 'Would you want to know about God?' They'd probably say, 'Don't bother me, man, I'm having too much fun.' And one other thing about that kind of music and other kinds of degenerate music, the beat is made to literally vibrate through your body. What about all the sports on Friday night? Then you come to Saturday, when do they have all of the college football games, basketball games, Friday night-Saturday—right? Yes! Now it's more important to have fun than to find God, so likewise, you could take all of those who go to the college games, they're out there cheering, they're out there yelling, and they've given themselves to the team, which is their idol, and which most of them have a logo, and they're after some sort of likeness of an animal, like the lions, the river rats, or whatever it may be. And so these becomes gods and idols, and they give their whole devotion to it. They talk about it and they have statistics, and if it's football, they know who the quarterback is, how many passes he threw, how many first downs he threw, how many touchdowns he threw, how many field goals were kicked, what the score was at a certain time; and they're all wrapped up in it, because the goal of all of this is to finish the season and to go to a bowl. So just think of all the energy they put into going to the game and knowing the statistics, and they don't have a clue as to what the Bible would be. And you know, I wonder how many would really, really keep a Bible, if you stood there and said, 'Oh, we want to help you, here's a Bible, would you like to read it?' as they exited a game. Never would!

Now let's grow up and let's come to adulthood. Do adults have parties on Friday nights? Yes! Matter of fact, that's probably when most of the adultery and drugs and everything takes place, on a Friday night, go to night clubs—right? Go to some party—right? Yes! Go to husband-wife swapping parties. There are countless of those. There are drug parties, sniff your cocaine. How many began their cocaine or their meth on a Friday night? Because Satan wants you to break the Sabbath, so he's got you with another activity. All right, well you say, 'I don't do those things.' Well, do you go all shopping on Saturday when they have all the sales and the low prices? Yes, indeed! You're still breaking the Sabbath! That's why the Sabbath becomes so important in understanding how do you study the Bible and understand it.

Let's go to the next one. So far, as we've gone along, have any of these been difficult and complicated to understand? No!

  •  "'Honor your father and your mother so that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God gives you'" (v 5).

What do we have today? Disobedience to parents, rebellious children, women and children ruling over them; and father is almost relegated to a nincompoop. And you watch some of the ads that they have on: children dominated, women dominated, and the father's made to look like a fool. The woman knows all about carpentry and electronics—Ha! Ha! Ha! Not so! A woman knows how to run the television, whatever. The children know better. They have a nice cute little ad for dad. Two little girls come up and they have something for dad and they give it to him, and he sees that it is hair dye, because he's getting gray hair. And the two little girls look up at him and say, 'Please, Daddy, won't you use it?' See how they play on emotions, and you can do that every place else.

Now for the men: hunting, fishing, car buying, auto repairs, yard repairs, all on Saturday. Now let's ask a question about Sunday, do they keep Sunday Holy? No! They go to church; they're out the door doing their own activity.

Same thing with honoring your father and mother. When you youths go out on Friday night, most of the time, you lie to your parents—don't you? You tell them you're in one place, when you're really at another place. And cell phones don't make any difference, because on the cell phone you can tell your folks whatever you want to, and you know how to lie to them. And then you get in trouble. And the schools are no help, they teach you to disobey and dishonor your father and mother, especially if they are what they would consider religious, and believe in any form of God. And they dishonor your father and mother by saying, 'Oh, you can't discipline any of your children; you wouldn't dare spank them.' So the children are raised up as narcissistic brats, with no control, dishonoring father and mother. And how many die at a young age, because of accidents, because of suicide, because of drugs.

So you see, what we're finding also is that every ill that there is in society is because they're breaking the commandments of God. So if you want to understand the Word of God, and get your life squared around, then you've got to start keeping the commandments of God, because if you don't you won't have any understanding.

  • "'You shall not murder'" (v 13).

Now murder is one of the biggest crimes in America and in many countries of the world—it is called abortion. To say nothing of murdering, shooting, stabbing, beating, bludgeoning, and all of that; mothers killing their children putting duck tapes on the mouths of their children; men shooting their families because they lose their job—so that's self-explanatory. But Jesus said if you hate, you've committed murder.

  • "'You shall not commit adultery'" (v 14).

Oh, that's out of date. Adultery in this society is the only way to go fornication, adultery, teenage sex, child sex, pedophilia.

  • "'You shall not steal'" (v 15).

Ohhh, look at all the thievery that goes on. You realize that of the goods you buy in the store, between 15-20% of it is the cost of thievery, and a lot of that comes from the faithful employees, so called, who steal, put things out the back door.

  • "'You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor'" (v 16).

And that includes lying. The human heart is so deceitful, that they have found that the average person will tell three lies in ten minutes. They're so dishonest with themselves that they can't even tell the truth.

Now here's the one that is perhaps the most spiritual, because all of these others have actions which have consequences and here the tenth commandment, which the Catholics split in two so they can compensate for the second commandment in the catechism against idols that they remove. So in the Catholic catechism, the tenth commandment is nine and ten. But notice, this is all your thoughts, all your motivation, so God is interested in your thoughts and your motivation, and God is also the heart knowing God. Now notice:

  • "'You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor's'" (v 17).

And what is the greatest crime that we have in so many cities today? Lying, cheating, stealing, because they covet. 'I want this, I want that, I want the other thing.' So God is also interested in your thoughts.

Then you can read some of the other commandments, what you are to do to even someone that you don't like; that God says you're under obligation that if someone you don't like, and his donkey comes onto your property, you are to return it to him. Think how that would apply with all the coveting. You take away coveting, you teach people to think correctly, and let's analyze all ten now for just a minute.

If people were taught in churches, and on the Sabbath day to all keep the Sabbath, and they were taught in the schools to love one another as themselves, love your neighbor as yourself, to honor your father and mother; now we'll just set aside the first four for just a minute and look at just the carnal society with the last six. Isn't the society wanting to have good fathers, good mothers, good children? Yes. You get that by the fifth commandment of honoring your father and your mother. You shall not murder. If all of these were taught. You shall not commit adultery, and all of these were taught. You shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness and lie. You shall not covet your neighbor's house, you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbors—and you can put there, his car, his motorcycle, his clothes, his house, everything that he has, his fishing gear, her sewing machine, whatever it may be—if people were taught to keep those, what would the percentage of crime be? Virtually zero. How many policemen would you need? Hardly any! because each person would be a policeman unto him or herself.

So everything that people desire, and complain about, and vote against, or vote for, or are taxed to solve the problem, comes down to the last six commandments. And the breaking of the last six commandments come from breaking the first four. So what do you have? You have a population, and that may include you, that does not understand the Bible, does not care about God, and look at your miserable lives. And look at the police state that has to be created because people are not taught to police themselves. 'Oh, all these commandments are harsh. Oh, no, we can't have that, this is out of date.'

Let's come to Deuteronomy 5 (pg 298) and we'll finish here. I want you to think about how many thousands and thousands of laws and ordinances and statutes are there on the books, which would not have to be there if they kept the Ten Commandments. Now in keeping the Ten Commandments: How can that be a curse, when it's going to bring a blessing of all the things that we just discussed here? So, what man calls a curse, God calls a blessing. Wouldn't it be nice if you could your house, leave it open, and know that when you came home everything would be there. No, you've got to lock it up, you've got to lock the doors, you have to have an alarm system, and you have to have it so that the police know that you have an alarm system, so if the alarm goes off, well, you have to have the alarm company call you and find out is it you; did you make a mistake. They pretty well know after so many seconds, they are told to call the police so they come out.

Now we have an alarm system on our house and it kept going off. The police came out about three or four times and since when we were gone our neighbor would be the one that they would call, because when she's gone, if her alarm goes off, they would call us. She would come over and wait for the police to be there, and there was no evidence of anyone stealing anything, nobody breaking in or anything like that. So finally, we called the alarm company, and he came over and found that one of the sensors, which senses motion downstairs in the hallway—and we have a long hallway downstairs—was not working right because one of those big spiders that you get in the corner made his nest up there and was crossing back and forth across the motion detector.

When they heard God speak all these words, and it was powerful, thundering, with lightning, and the voice of God. Here's a good lesson for us. Remember, Jesus said, 'You shall live by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.' And God gave the Ten Commandments, every word proceeded from His mouth. Deuteronomy 5:22: "'The LORD spoke these words to all your assembly in the mountain out of the midst of the fire of the cloud and of the thick darkness with a great voice. And He added no more…. [That's all He spoke was the Ten Commandments. Later He gave the statutes and judgments to Moses, which then broke it down in a little finer detail on how you apply it.] …And He wrote them on two tablets of stone and delivered them to me. And it came to pass when you heard the voice out of the midst of the darkness, for the mountain burned with fire, you came near me, all the heads of your tribes and your elders. And you said, "Behold, the LORD our God has revealed His glory and His greatness, and we have heard His voice out of the midst of the fire. We have seen today that God talks with man yet he still lives"'" (vs 22-24). Now notice their attitude. Instead of saying, 'Oh, this is a wonderful event. Think how great that these commandments are.' No! They rebelled right when they heard it! So how are you going to react when you hear this? Are you going to rebel?

Verse 25: "'"Now therefore why should we die? For this great fire will consume us…. [Course it didn't.] …If we hear the voice of the LORD our God anymore, then we shall die…. [Isn't that what people do? They stop their ears to this day with the commandments of God. They accuse God of all kinds of things and it's the exact opposite.] …For who of all flesh has heard the voice of the living God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as we have, and lived?…. ['Now since we're still alive, Moses, we want you to do something for us.'] …You go near and hear all that the LORD our God shall say. And you speak to us all that the LORD our God shall speak to you, and we will hear it, and do it"'"(vs 25-27). But it never happened that way, because whenever you put a man between you and God, then you look at the man and his mistakes and you say, 'Ah ha, I don't have to obey, because he's a sinner.'

Now v 28: "'And the LORD heard the voice of your words when you spoke to me. And the LORD said to me, "I have heard the voice of the words of this people, which they have spoken to you…. [So God knows what they said.] …They have well said all that they have spoken…. [In other words, they're well intended, but here is the problem. And this is why in order to further understand the Bible, you've got to repent and be baptized, because what God wants to do is change your heart. Now they weren't willing for that. Because they said this, God said]: …Oh, that there were such a heart in them that they would fear Me and keep all my commandments always so that it might be well with them and with their children forever!'" (vs 28-29).

See, the commandments of God are good. They are right. That's why only those who keep the commandments of God will have a good understanding of the Word of God.

"'Go say to them, 'Go into your tents again.' But as for you, you stand here by Me, and I will speak to you all the commandments and the statutes and the judgments which you shall teach them, that they may do them in the land which I am giving them, to possess it." And you shall be careful to do as the LORD your God has commanded you. You shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. You shall walk in all the ways which the LORD your God has commanded you so that you may live and that it may be well with you, and you may prolong your days in the land which you shall possess'" (vs 30-33).

Now that's the Truth of the commandments and the first thing you need to do to understand the Bible and come out of the confusion that you were in.

Scriptural References:

  • Isaiah 8:19-20, 16-17
  • Psalm 111:1-7
  • Titus 1:1-2
  • Psalm 111:7-8
  • Matthew 5:17, 19
  • Psalm 111:7-10
  • Matthew 4:1-4
  • John 14:15
  • 1-John 5:2-3
  • Exodus 20:1-11
  • Matthew 7:7-8
  • Exodus 20:12-17
  • Deuteronomy 5:22-33

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

    • 1-Corinthians 14:33
    • Genesis 2

Also referenced:

Article: Rome's Challenge to the Protestants

Transcribed: 7-7-09
Formatted: bo—7-8-09