The Elder's Covenant with Christ and discussion of various church projects

Fred R. Coulter—May 25, 2019

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Greetings, everyone! Welcome to Sabbath services! We had a wonderful conference, which was like a Feast. As Betty knows when she was back there, it's like a Feast. We really had, I think, one of the best that we have ever had. I'll fill you in on that in just a bit.

Since this is Memorial Day weekend, where they are honoring all the dead who fought in all the wars for America, I thought that we should contemplate all who died in the service of Christ! That's where the history that John Guenther has really been doing a good job. Right now he is right in the middle of how the Crusades and the attacks against the Church were coming full force, because a lot of the princes—because they weren't nations like they are now—were protecting those who were the true Christians, and they helped them print their Bibles.

This was a mammoth thing for the Catholic Church. That all these heretics were doing these things and they were losing power. That's when they took a lot of the Crusade knights and armies and temporarily used them to turn aside and go after the Christians. We need to keep them in mind from the point of view that they will be in the resurrection.

Let's see the prophecy of this by Jesus Himself. Remember that the first 12 years all the Gospel was preached to the Jews around Judea and Galilee and so forth. They didn't get into the Gentiles until it was into Antioch, but that was shortly after Cornelius. Where was Cornelius? He was in Caesarea, which was on the seacoast right there where Judea was.

It's interesting that when I was going through editing the Greek-English for the Interlinear, I discovered something that I didn't understand in the same way.

  • Everywhere that Paul went, where did he go first? To the synagogue!
  • Guess who the first elders were in those Gentile churches? Jews!
  • Why? Because they had the Word of God!

The Word of God was preached from the Old Testament! They didn't have the New Testament!

John 16:1: "I have spoken these things to you so that you will not be offended. They shall cast you out of the synagogues… [Didn't that happen with Paul especially?] …furthermore, the time is coming that everyone who kills you will think that he is rendering service to God" (vs 1-2). Isn't that what they did? Yes!
Verse 3: "And they shall do these things to you because they do not know the Father, nor Me"—which is another clue about the Catholic Church!

Rev. 2—here we find that Jesus also told the Church at Smyrna that they were going to suffer some things. We know that head of us that's going to happen again. Look at what they're doing to the professing Christians in the world. There are more being killed now than ever before. Think what it's going to do when it gets here. It's going to come! Guess what they were trying to do in Texas—of all stupid places to try—to ban the Bible. It's coming!

As the Democrats are trying to work it in, they're actually trying to create a dictatorship contrary to the Constitution. Here in Rev. back to the Church:

Revelation 2:8: "And to the angel of the Church of the Smyrneans write: These things says the First and the Last, Who was dead but is alive. 'I know your works and tribulation and poverty (but you are rich)… [because they stayed close to God, they obeyed God, so they were rich] …and the blasphemy of those who declare themselves to be Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan'" (vs 8-9).

To declare themselves to be Jews is because Jesus said that 'salvation comes of the Jews.' That's true; it started there to the Jew first.

Verse 10: "Do not fear any of the things that you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, that you may be tried; and you shall have tribulation ten days. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you a crown of life."

Since the world is honoring their dead, we can honor the dead in Christ by being faithful to God! They were faithful unto death. Look at it today, how many—when trouble comes along—turn their back on God and go the other way.

Review of the Conference:

This year we had it all on video and audio. So, we will see if we can get those videos out to you. What are the elders to do for the people of God?

Proverbs 28:18[transcriber's correction]: "Where there is no vision, the people perish…"

What we have to do is constantly—because the human mind is not going to retain spiritual knowledge unless it is renewed and that's why we have every Sabbath, so we can come to God.

Isn't it amazing, I know that it's happened to you and it's happened to me; you study and you read along and all of a sudden in those things you've read before, VOILA!, there's something new. That's why it's over and over again, because these are the words of God written for us. These are the words of His voice to obey!

The Elder's Covenant with Christ

That's what we need to do with the Church. So, the first thing that I covered what I called The Elder's Covenant with Christ! We find the beginning of it here in John 21, and this is with Peter. Remember, Peter had to learn a lesson. It's natural for human beings to want to really want to do something for God.

When Jesus said that He was going to die, Peter said, 'No, Lord, that will never happen to You.' Then Jesus said, 'In this day, tonight, you're going to deny Me before the cock crows three times.' Here's the counterpart to that, and we know that occurred.

Think about this: Peter would remember that all his life! The other thing he would remember all of his life was when Peter, James and John went up to the high mountain with Christ for the vision of the Transfiguration.

So, when we come to John 21 they were out fishing and didn't catch a thing that night. Jesus came and they didn't recognize Him at first, but Jesus made a fire, He had some bread and He was cooking some fish. How did Jesus get those fish? Did He just create them? He could do that!

John 21:12: "Jesus said to them, 'Come and dine.' But none of the disciples dared to ask Him, 'Who are You?' For they knew that it was the Lord. Then Jesus came and took the bread, and gave it to them, and likewise the fish. This was now the third time that Jesus revealed Himself to His disciples after being raised from the dead. Therefore, when they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter…" (vs 12-15).

Jesus knew that Peter was going to be a leading apostle: Peter, James and John.

"…'Simon, son of Jonas, do you love Me more than these?'…." (v 15). This is part of the covenant that I emphasized to the elders. When you are an elder, do you love Jesus more than anything else, and that includes God the Father as well. That's the only way that you're going to stay faithful, because look at all of the splinters and fallouts and terrible doctrines and things that happen, because they are not serving in the way that they ought to. This is one of the first things that I covered.

"…And he said to Him, 'Yes, Lord. You know that I love You.'…." (v 15).

In the first instance Jesus used the word 'agape,' which is Godly love. Peter answered back with 'phileo,' which is friendship love.

"…He said to him, 'Feed My lambs'" (vs 15). Lambs are the new ones, who have to be fed, taught, nurtured.

Verse 16: "He said to him again a second time, 'Simon, son of Jonas, do you love Me?' And he said to Him, 'Yes, Lord. You know that I love You.'…. [same thing, 'agape' and 'phileo'] …He said to him, 'Shepherd My sheep.'" Shepherd means you give them the direction that God wants them to have!You teach them the words of Christ.

This is important for every elder to know. I'll say of the elders in CBCG:

  • they know the Bible
  • they know the Word
  • they take care of the brethren
  • they are excellent elders

Verse 17: "He said to him the third time, 'Simon, son of Jonas, do you love Me?'…. [here Jesus used 'phileo'] …Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time…"

Why did Jesus do this three times? To make the same point spiritually to Peter where he failed with denying Him! Jesus wanted to make sure that 'you aren't going to deny Me in your service to the brethren.'

"…'Do you love Me?' And he said to Him, 'Lord, You know all things. You know that I love You.' Jesus said to him, 'Feed My sheep'" (v 17).

That's the whole thing of what we need to do. We covered things like counseling. Remember in Worldwide, all the counseling. Anything you have to if it's a major decision, you counsel with the elder. Well, when they had these 21-year-old young bucks just graduating from AC and they go out to a place like Texas and you have a 68-year-old man out there who has run his own business and everything. Do you think he's going to go talk to that 21-year-old? How many mistakes were made when that happened?

So, the thing that I teach the elders is that if you teach the brethren what they're to do, how they are to do it—from the Word of God—to develop character, and you teach them how to solve their own problems, then you don't need a mountain of counseling.

Isn't that the easiest way? Yes! Because the one who has the problem learns to solve the problem, rather than rely on someone else, they're taught to rely on God the Father and Jesus Christ, and with the Word of God!

That is a major tremendous thing that needs to be done. Mark 12 is the whole thing that all of us base everything that we do. The worst thing is to try and rule the brethren. That is not what God wants. That takes away choice. All of us have to exercise our free moral agency. Here's what we need to teach ourselves. I went through and showed the elders how that Paul wrote, who was a Jew and you trust in the law and rest in the Word of God, when you preach, 'Do you not teach yourself.' That's an important thing for every elder to do. They must continue to teach themselves with the Word of God:

  • that way they will grow in grace and knowledge
  • that way they will be able to serve the brethren
  • that way they will be faithful to the brethren

Mark 12:28: "And one of the scribes who had come up to Him, after hearing them reasoning together and perceiving that He answered them well, asked Him, 'Which is the first commandment of all?'"—another trap; they were trying to trap Him.

Remember when we went through the sermon series: The Last Ten Days of Jesus' Life? The last two days were the days of provocation.

Verse 29: "Then Jesus answered him, 'The first of all the commandments is…'"

This is one that needs to be reinforced and reinforced in everything that we do so that as elders we don't get carried away thinking that we're some great important person! We're not! Because in God—in Christ and the Father—'we live, move and have our being!' we have been set aside to teach.

"…'Hear, O Israel…. [I like to put my name there; you put your name there] …Our one God is the Lord, the Lord.'" This is the correct translation, read it in Appendix X[transcriber's correction]: Exegetical Analysis of Mark 12:29, and this conforms with Deut. 6.

Verse 30: "'And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart…'"

Notice how full-time this is regardless of what our occupation, trade or profession may be. Everything we do in that we do according to how God wants us to live our lives, and love our neighbor as our self.

"'…and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.'…." (v 30). It doesn't say part of your mind, soul or heart.

You cannot have a secret place in the back of your mind that is just you contrary to God. Is that what happened to a lot of people? Is that what happened to many of the elders? They weren't keeping that relationship with God every day, every day, every day!

"…This is the first commandment. And the second is like this: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these" (vs 30-31). That's the first thing!

  • you love God
  • you keep at it
  • you feed the flock
  • you teach them, you teach them, you teach them

Every sermon needs to glorify God, to teach the Word of God!

I think it was on Fox News and they reviewed a speech by Barak Obama when he was in Germany. He referred to himself in a one hour fifteen minute speech 392 times! That is a the total opposite of the kind of speaking that needs to come from the elders.

Matt. 20 tells us there is to be no politics! Isn't that what happened when the Church had this groups over here and this group over there? It became a political thing! Can you imagine what the mother of Zebedee thought of her sons? It very well may be that she was a relative of Mary. Don't know, but it's possible.

Matthew 20:20: "Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to Him with her sons, worshiping Him and asking a certain thing from Him." Lord, I'd love a favor from You!

Verse 21: "And He said to her, 'What do you desire?' She said to Him, 'Grant that these my two sons may sit one at Your right hand and one at Your left hand in Your kingdom.'" That's not asking for too much, is it?

Verse 22: "But Jesus answered and said, 'You do not know what you are asking…. [then looking at the two brothers and said]: …Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?'…. [seeking the position, stupidly]: …They said to Him, 'We are able'"—not knowing that He was going to be baptized in His own blood!

Verse 23: "And He said to them, 'You shall indeed drink of My cup, and shall be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with; but to sit at My right hand and at My left hand is not Mine to give, but shall be given to those for whom it has been prepared by My Father.'" This stirred up a real controversy!

Verse 24: "And after hearing this, the ten were indignant against the two brothers." Look at that, they're going up there with mamma! Inside track on family politics!

Verse 25: "But Jesus called them to Him and said, 'You know that the rulers of the nations exercise lordship… [in the Greek it means from the top down] …over them, and the great ones… [their religious leaders] …exercise authority over them. However, it shall not be this way among you; but whoever would become great among you, let him be your servant, and whoever would be first among you, let him be your slave;  just as the Son of man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many'" (vs 25-28).

This is the attitude that needs to be, not to lift ourselves up and say, 'I'm important here' and all of this sort of thing. God can take away all of that importance in the 'flick of a finger.' This is what it needs to be with the elders.

  • to teach, to teach, to teach
  • to help
  • to encourage
  • to uplift

Then we also covered 2-Tim. 2. You've heard this before. This is really a very important thing for us to really understand and grasp.

2-Timothy 2:14: "See that they remain mindful of these things… [the things of Christ] …earnestly charging them in the sight of the Lord not to argue over words that are not profitable in any way, but which lead to the subverting of those who hear."

Another thing an elder is to do is to guard the brethren and make sure that some is not coming in with stupid doctrines. I'm going to get the information on the calendar of Enoch. I mentioned this one time before I left, which is almost like the new world calendar.

The Book of Enoch that is available today came out of Alexandria, Egypt, so it's not worth very much. It was never included in the canon, although Jude, the brother of Jesus, did quote something out of it, which is probably true. But that doesn't make the whole thing true. I read it, and it's filled with nothing but magic and witchcraft.

The calendar does this: two months of 30 days, one month of 31 and you do this four times and you come up with 364 days. What happens? If you follow that, then you're constantly going back approximately two days a year! That's not quite the same as the Julian calendar that has 365 days.

If that is followed—and there are some people who believe it—then Passover moves progressively toward winter, and over a long period of time will go through the whole 12 months of the calendar.

The modern version of it is for the world calendar, same thing of 30/31 four times and then the two days that they don't count what do they do? One year they have one day that they don't count! It's just a blip! Every four years they have two days that they don't count.

Think about what that does to the weekly Sabbath! The first time it goes back a day, second time it goes back a day, now your at Thursday. Then Wednesday, Tuesday. Then two days and you come back to Monday and Sunday.

How is that going to work for people who are employed and have to have the Sabbath off?

Another calendar is circulating around is that you wait for the new moon and then count seven days and that's Sabbath. Then you go four Sabbaths and wait for the new moon again, which is a different day, then you count seven days and that's Sabbath for four times. It's constantly circulating through the week!

You come to your boss and you say, 'Hey, boss, I need the Sabbath Day off.' What day is that? 'That's Saturday of this month.' Okay! Then you come to him the next month and say, 'I need the Sabbath off.' Yeah, you can have Saturday off. 'No, it's Friday this month.' Then the next month it's Thursday. Crazy religion!

You can't have those things going, you have to guard the brethren from that!

Verse 15: "Diligently… [always with intensity and vigor] …study to show yourself approved unto God…" Not so you can have knowledge and speak it from the pulpit to show how important you are!

"…a workman who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of the Truth" (v 15).

That's an important thing to do, because if you wrongly divide it, you create a lie from the Truth that has no lies! That comes by changing what God really means! We covered that, and the reason to study is to teach!

John 6 is a very important and primary chapter, because as we've seen in Eph. 2, if we are doing the works that God has before ordained that we walk in them, and they are what God says, whose works are they? Ours? or God's? They're God's works! He says that you do this, and you do it; you do that, and you do it. Those works are of God!

Remember that when you read Rev. 2 & 3 He doesn't say that He's going to judge you by your faith. He says, 'I know your works!' first words out of His mouth to all seven churches! 'I know your works!' What is He looking to? The works! They must be based on the Word of God in faith.

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, 'And they shall all be taught by God.'…." (vs 44-45).

That's profound statement! That's why all the elders, all the teachers in teaching the brethren need to teach the Word of God! When you teach the Word of God, having God's Spirit: Who is teaching us? God is!

"…Therefore, everyone who has heard from the Father… [How do you hear from the Father? He makes it known to you that Jesus is the Christ!] …and has learned, comes to Me" (v 45).

  • that's why we have the Word of God
  • that's why there are the elders

With our websites we've got all kinds of information. There are people who are scattered, but they're able to use the websites. Some of them are alone, and in some cases alone-alone; they're hundreds of miles from anybody.

John Guenther is way north of Calgary in Canada. The question came up 'where two or three are gathered there I am in your midst' (Matt. 18). That's discussing that if you have a decision to make you can make it, because 'there I am in the midst of you.' But that also applies when you meet. If you are alone and you have the Spirit of God, you have the Father and the Son and you, so there are three of you. That's not the trinity either, by the way!

Psa. 29—this is on teaching and learning. Which commandment out of the ten has New Testament doctrine? The second commandment!

Exodus 20:4: "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. You shall not bow yourself down to them, nor serve them, for I, the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands of those who love Me and keep My commandments" (vs 4-6).

That goes right to John 14, 'If you love Me, keep My commandments.'

This is quite interesting because the important thing about the Bible is that it is the recorded Word of God.

Psalm 29:1: "To the LORD, O you sons of the mighty, give to the LORD glory and strength. Give to the LORD the glory due to His name; worship the LORD in the beauty of Holiness. The voice of the LORD is upon the waters; the God of glory thunders; the LORD is above many waters. The voice of the LORD is powerful, the voice of the LORD is full of majesty. The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; yea, the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon" (vs 1-5).

Verse 7: "The voice of the LORD hews out flames of fire. The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. The voice of the LORD…" (vs 7-9).

All of that, when we look at the Bible, it is the voice of the LORD. Think about what we need to do with that.

Psa. 25 shows the whole operation of how a church needs to run.

Psalm 25:4: "Show me Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your Truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; on You do I wait all the day long" (vs 4-5).

Verse 8: "Good and upright is the LORD; therefore, He will teach sinners in the way."

I just did some Church at Home and I went through John 14:6: "…I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life…" Here we find it right here in Psa. 25.

Psalm 25:9: "The meek He will guide in judgment; and the meek He will teach His way. All the paths of the LORD are mercy and Truth to those who keep His covenant and His testimonies" (vs 9-10).

Verse 12: "What man is he who fears the LORD? He shall teach him in the way that He shall choose."

You know something that the world does not know, and cannot bring enough money to buy it. You know the secret of the Lord, which is the mystery of God!

Verse 14: "The secret of the LORD is with those who fear Him, and He will show them His covenant." That is quite a Psalm!

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I want to cover one thing related to studying and teaching.

Deuteronomy 17:14: "When you come to the land, which the LORD your God gives you, and shall possess it and shall live in it and shall say, 'I will set a king over me, like all the nations that are around me.' You shall surely set a king over you, whom the LORD your God shall choose. You shall set a king over you from among your brethren. You may not set a stranger over you who is not your brother. Only he shall not multiply horses to himself… [this is what Solomon did right at the first] …nor cause the people to return to Egypt…" (vs 14-16)—that's what's happening today.

I've done quite a few Church at Home on witchcraft. I've gotten some other books on it, and I'm telling you, I am 'witch-crafted out.' It is everywhere!

"…so as to multiply horses because the LORD has said to you, 'You shall not return that way again.' Nor shall he multiply wives to himself, so that his heart does not turn away…." (vs 16-17). These are the exact words used of Solomon.

"…Nor shall he greatly multiply silver and gold to himself. And it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book from that which is in the custody of the priests the Levites. And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, so that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this Law and these statutes, to do them so that his heart may not be lifted up above his brethren…(vs 17-20).

That applies spiritually, as well, to all the elders. We are to be serving, and serving is not from the top down. You're serving from the bottom up.

"…and that he does not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he and his children, in the midst of Israel" (v 20).

That's why it's important for all of us to study and pray, but especially for the elders.

I know a minister that I worked with who moved to Oklahoma, and when we went on vacation one time we went by to visit him and I was sitting in his office. He had a stack of these spiral notebooks that he had all of his sermons in. 'Fred, you see this stack of notebooks here, all my sermons are in there. And every three or four years they move us, so when I move I just start at the top and I got right down through all of them again.' He did that three times.

Guess what happened? I'll let you figure it out, it wasn't good.

The Christian Fellowship group from Southern Florida:

I want to cover something that was quite a situation, and was quite good at the elder's conference. How many remember Chauncey Normandin. Well, he's got the Christian Fellowship group in southern Florida, so I invited them up to the conference. It was Chauncey and his wife, Bob Lewis and his wife and Pam Bruneing. They use mostly our material and some from John Rittenbaugh. They have search out every splinter group in the Church of God, and they get most of their material from us.

They were quite overwhelmed, and the reception that they had was fantastic. I had Chauncey explain about the group and how they came to be.

This shows us that God is working with different people that we knew nothing about. They spent years checking on all of this wanting to know what's the truth? They finally contacted us and he sent me an e-mail and said, 'Can I come over on the Sabbath.' He's quite a ways away, but he wanted to come and I said for him to come. He came and checked out the building outside and then went to the hotel and checked in.

When I came for services he was out in the parking lot waiting. He recognized me and came up when I came here. It was just like we knew each other all our lives. It was quite a thing.

He's a retired captain from a police force in Massachusetts. Bob Lewis is retired from Special Services in the military. So, these men know what they're doing and they mean business.

Pam Bruneing is a woman who has fantastic talent to be able to make things for youth. She takes a sermon and makes questions and answers with it, and presents that to the youth; they have some youth in their group.

Kidz Korner: {http://www.firstcenturyfellowship.org/kidz-korner/}

She is quite talented in this, even some of the questions… Byron Norrod was there and said, 'Boy, these are hard for adults.' It's fantastic what she does. She takes our transcripts and then works up the questions and answers from that. She wanted to know if she could get the transcripts than when they're posted online. So, I said, 'I'll have Bonnie Orswell, who does the transcripts, send them to you as soon as she's done.

They were really well received by all the elders, and everyone. It was quite an overwhelming event for them. So, I want to read to you what Chauncey wrote back after he got back home from the conference. It was really quite a thing for them.

Hi Fred: I pray this finds you well. Just a note to thank you again for the invitation. I have been reading so much over the past few years from other WCG splinter groups and what they profess, but when you get away from the website and speak to them personally, they are not what they first appear to be.

After the response to your group, the actual love expressed to all of us seeing people who actually lived what they talked about, we were overwhelmed by all the love from you and all those in attendance.

That's quite a testimony from them.

I learned a long time ago the attitude of any organization flows from the top down, good or bad.

In this case it's from the bottom up!

CBCG under your leadership is a perfect example of great leadership with a great honest and loving attitude. Your leadership and guidance, and the respect the brethren have for you in the way you lead in the transmission of God's Word is amazing.

I have never experienced so much genuine love, honesty and concern anywhere, as I have been. I want to thank you and your leadership group for all the work with the brethren.

Thank you for your acceptance of our small group and mostly for being a living example of what a Godly man and Godly leader is.

As of today, I sent off a copy of the book Temple, which we spoke of. I hope you enjoy it.

I got it just the other day and it's where the temple should be. That's was quite nice. It was really quite a thing.

Google Search:

Jonathan was there the whole conference, and he had an opportunity to meet all the elders and spend time with them. He spent quite a bit of time with Mike Flake and Steve Durham. Mike Flake has been doing some work that is quite good for helping get our rating of our site up higher on Google's search, so you get up within the first half dozen when someone wants to know something.

He knows how to do that, so we're going to use him to do even more, and give him some re-numeration for his time.

The next thing we covered was Go to Meeting, which was started two years ago. Steve Durham is in Indianapolis and he said he would like to try to do a Go to Meeting thing. This was after Roy Assanti in Australia setup a Go to Meeting thing down there. Of course in Australia they're really scattered. If you think we're scattered in America, down there it's even farther.

Anyway, Steve Durham set it up and it is by invitation and it's for members. Then he hosts it and sends out an invite for those who want to come to Go to Meeting. You have to have certain password number to get in, and then you're all set. Then we have seven of our elders rotate in giving a sermon on Sabbath evening (Friday).

What we want to do, for example is that on Friday night—because it's in the Mid-West and on the eastern part of the country—it begins at 5 pm Pacific Time, or 8 pm Eastern Time.

They come on a half hour early and some of the brethren are able to fellowship with one another and so forth. Then the message is brought—one hour—and last night it was by Eduardo. I didn't get a chance to see it. We have two sessions of Go to Meeting, because it goes to Europe. On Friday night it's day portion down in Australia. So, we have a lot of people in Go to Meeting from the United States.

Elizondo family:

Speaking of Eduardo, we ordained him an elder at the conference. He's about 30, I don't know his exact age.

Let me tell you about the Eduardo Elizondo family. His brother Guilebaldo we ordained about three or four years ago. He heads up a lot of the Spanish work that is being done. Then we have Miguel Marcia up in Canada who heads up the Latino website. Then we have different ones working on translating the Bible and some booklets and things.

The Elizondo family grew up in the Church, and their father had a good program for them as they were growing up. It's a program that we fully adopted here for the youth with the book of Proverbs. Every day he would have the family together, and go through one chapter of the book of Proverbs and discuss it. Next day go through another chapter and on through 31 chapters.

When finished they would go back and start again. They did this year after year after year. I tell you the Elizondo family is solid in the Truth of God! They are both good elders. I think that Eduardo gave one of the best messages during the conference, showing the tie in with Old Testament and New Testament. That was quite a highlight there.

*****

Now, a little more about Pam Bruneing. I don't know exactly how we're going to work it, but I think we can put a click through to her website. We don't want to start a new website, she's already got it. Her whole profession and business is to teach youth. She has a PhD and she's really on top of it.

We know that a lot of the people coming into the Church today are not the youth, but maybe, if in this world there are some youth through their parents are able to come to Kidz Korner that they will begin to understand the Bible and come along. But I think the greatest growth is going to come in the future from the different Churches of God as they leave off teaching the Bible the way that they should! I think that will be a great number.

We hope that with getting Church at Home, with Mike Flake's getting us a higher rating, that there will be more people to come with that. That will be something if we can do that.

That was really quite a thing having all of them from the Christian Fellowship group up there at the conference.

Interlinear Project:

 Another thing we covered was the Interlinear that we are developing. I've spoken about that since we started it, but now we are halfway through. We have completed Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and the book of Acts. That's was quite a thing proofreading the Greek and the English below. That's virtually been the major part of my Bible study for quite a while to get that done.

We have them bound in the books that Ken Redmond does, so we have 50 of them made up and took them back to everybody at the conference. Jonathan is going to go down and get them in a minute.

But what's important with this is the Received Text that has been used through the centuries is not in a digital form online. So, what we intend to do, and without a Traditional Received Greek Text online, the scholars never use it. So, what we're going to do when we're done with the whole thing is take and strip out the English translation under the Greek and reformat the Greek so it will be available for anybody on line, pure Greek, with the footnotes that go with it.

I've also been comparing that with the Byzantine Text Form by Robinson and Pierpont. They show that the text in the western part of the empire is no good. The Alexandrian Text is no good, the Sinaiticus Text is no good and the Vaticanus is taken from the Alexandrian. But in the area of Asia Minor, where the Churches were, were the greatest number of manuscripts and lectionaries—notes from sermons with quoted Scripture—were. So, they have spent 30 years going through and developing the Byzantine Text Form.

The Traditional Text and what they have done is only about a half of a percent difference. They claim a little more difference, but I discount part of their claims for this reason. If you look at the bottom of any page you will see that there are various words that other texts say could be used. I found that in almost all of the changes that Robinson and Pierpont have made have come from the margin. So, in my opinion—he may not like it—if it's in the margin, it's in the book.

When I was going through the book of Acts they struck out a whole verse. I couldn't figure out why that was struck out. It seemed to be absolutely necessary. So, I would say that the Byzantine Text Form is excellent, but I think their putting down of the Traditional Received Text is too much. They should be side by side and the difference is only about a half a percent and that's with words that really don't count. It's been quite a task doing that.

 Now, a little more on George Ricker Berry: When I first thought of this, I thought that we would just get the Berry Interlinear Greek-English New Testament and we will just clip off the side margin right and left with the King James and put in the Faithful Version. Well, I have three of the Berry's at home and in looking at them there are dark pages, there are light pages, there are missing letters, there are scrunched letters, so, I thought that if I could get one that was original, the first printing, and Ron Cary found a first printing. Guess what I found, the light pages in the first edition are light pages in all the rest are copies. The missing letters and scrunched letters were in the 1927 George Ricker Berry Interlinear.

So, anyway, that's a project that we want to do. In finally doing it, we want it manufactured book with thinner paper so it won't be so thick. Remember how thick the New Testament was? So, if we do that, that will be available for anyone. I don't know if they'll put it online, or whatever we're going to do, or how it's going to be.

Maybe that's why God chose the Greek. I think that's definitely why He did. The Hebrew is not like that. In the Hebrew you can have all kinds of different meanings and allegorical things with it. But not the Greek!

Paul's Difficult Scriptures:

The last appendix that we put in the Faithful Version was the difficult Scriptures of Paul and how to understand them. There are eight places in the New Testament where the definite article is primarily important. If the definite article is there, it must be translated the Law. When the definite article is not there it translated law.

Let's me explain why Rom. 2:14[transcriber's correction] was translated this way 'the law.' The is translated with italic. That is because there was no definite article in the Greek.

Romans 2:14[transcriber's correction]: "For when the Gentiles, which do not have the Law… [Why did I put that there? I'll show you! It's talking about the Law of God] …practice by nature the things contained in the Law, these who do not have the Law are a law unto themselves; who show the work of the Law…" (vs 14-15).

This is the only place in the Greek where the definite article the is before work and the Law!There are seven other place where it is used, but the definite article is not there, and was added by the translators.

Sidebar: In English the for everything, singular/plural. But in Greek for the singular, there are 12 different spellings of the. For the plural there are 12 different spellings of the. In Greek you have the cases:

  • nominative case—just ordinary
  • genitive case—ownership
  • dative case—in or for a stationary way
  • accusative case—motion toward

In every one of these cases the is spelled differently. Go to John 14 and you will see three or four different spellings of the word Father. If you tried this in English, you're going to flunk! But in Greek you have to have it.

Romans 2:15: "Who show the work of the Law written in their own hearts…" this is a good thing! Isn't that what it's suppose to be with the covenant with God: write it in our mind and inscribe it upon our heart! That's a good thing, so it's not a bad thing.

"…their consciences bearing witness, and their reasonings also as they accuse or defend one another)" (v 15).

I found one other translation—I forget who did it—that translated Gal. 2 correctly.

Galatians 2:11: "But when Peter came to Antioch, I withstood him to his face because he was to be condemned." If Peter went along with Judaizing look what would have happened to the Church!

Verse 12: "For, before certain ones came from James… [political, so Paul stopped that] …he was eating with the Gentiles…."

  • Remember who went to Cornelius? Peter!
  • What did he say when he walked in? I perceive that God is no respecter of persons!

"…However, when they came, he drew back and separated himself from the Gentiles…" (v 12)—because the high mucky-mucks came from James and said, 'Are you eating with Gentiles? So, Peter caved in to the pressure:

"…being afraid of those of the circumcision party. And the rest of the Jews joined him in this hypocritical act, insomuch that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy" (vs 12-13).

To separate yourself from Gentiles is a law of the Jews! A custom that they had! It's in the Code of Jewish Law. They had to separate.

Verse 14: "But when I [Paul] saw that they did not walk uprightly according to the Truth of the Gospel, I said to Peter in the presence of them all, 'If you, being a Jew, are living like the Gentiles… [eating with them] …and not according to Judaism, why do you compel the Gentiles to Judaize?'"—that is separate from eating together!

Verse 15: "We who are Jews by nature—and not sinners of the Gentiles—knowing that a man is not justified by works of law…" (vs 15-16).

If you have a King James it says the works of the law. WRONG! It's "…works of law…" What law are we talking about? The law of Judaism, not the Law of God! We saw in Rom. 2 they have the works of the Lawwritten in their hearts! That's God's Law and God's work, which is a good thing! Here this was reversing back to Judaism.

I'll leave it up to you to go to Appendix Z and go through the rest of it.

"…but through the faith of Jesus Christ, we also have believed in Christ Jesus in order that we might be justified by the faith of Christ…" (v 16).

What does the faith of Jesus cause us to do? Keep the commandments of God! But those don't justify us, because justification is your standing before God that only comes with repentance, forgiveness and right standing with God. Secondarily, you keep the commandments in relationship to that. If you don't you're not justified.

This becomes a little complicated and a little heavy-duty theology.

"…and not by works of law…" (v 16)—no definite articles; the KJV puts them in; even the English Standard Version does that. It should not be there, because these are works of law of Judaism!

Sidebar: Under the Old Covenant they had works of law with the sacrifices. Those would justify them to the temple, but not before God in heaven above. Only through the faith of Jesus Christ can that be done!

"…because by works of law shall no flesh be justified" (v 16). Why that statement? It doesn't say the works of the Law! That's why this chapter is so important. Right here Paul contains it several times.

Note this: No work of any law can justify you! What is the only thing that can justify you? The sacrifice of Jesus Christ and your repentance! That is the only thing that can justify you.

Can anything replace or substitute for the sacrifice of Christ? NO! His sacrifice abolished all of the temple sacrifices for justification to the temple. That's why Jesus' sacrifice was once for all time! For all people! This is really an important thing for you to understand.

Verse 17: "Now then, if we are seeking to be justified in Christ, and we ourselves are found to be sinners…"—showing that you can't come to God and be justified living in sin!

If you have a sin you must repent. Of course, the longer that you're in the Church and the longer that you have the Holy Spirit of God—you know what's in your mind and how evil the human mind is—repentance is a daily thing!

"…is Christ then the minister of sin? MAY IT NEVER BE! For if I build again those things that I destroyed… [Paul forsook all of Judaism, all of the separation] …I am making myself a transgressor. For I, through law, died to works of law… [that's the meaning of it] …in order…" (vs 17-19).

This is the Law of Christ: repent, be baptized and receive the Holy Spirit! It's also called the law of faith of the Spirit (Rom. 7). {Note sermon series: The Epistle of Paul to the Romans}.

"…that I may live to God. I have been crucified with Christ… [Rom. 6] …yet, I live. Indeed, it is no longer I; but Christ lives in me. For the life that I am now living in the flesh, I live by faith—that very faith of the Son of God…" (vs 19-20).

What is the gift of the Holy Spirit? Faith, hope, love, etc.!

"…Who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness is through works of law, then Christ died in vain" (vs 20-21).

Let's apply this to Christianity today. Sunday-keeping is a law and tradition of men! Look at the things that they have with what is called in the Catholic Church the Sacrifice of the Mass or the Eucharist. They crucify Christ again and again! That's why we take the Passover once a year on the same day that Jesus died!

That could only happen in the year when the Passover was in the middle of the week. Otherwise He couldn't have been in the grave three days and three nights. Just like this year, when did we have Passover? Thursday night! That means that Friday is counted as the Passover Day.

That's why the Catholic Church has worked it out to always have Easter close to the Passover. Every once in a while it's off, when there's a leap year in the Calculated Hebrews Calendar.

*****

This is going to be really an important thing when we get done with that Interlinear. But you let me know—I know that you don't know much Greek—but for me reading the Greek we put in 50% bold so it would read real nice. I don't know if everybody is going to like that or not, but when we get it for the final one, just to put it to pure Greek, we'll unbold it and just have it that way.

I was speaking of two things: When we do ours, it's going to be 81/2 by 11, thin paper, manufacturer bound. We'll have everything that is in Berry's Interlinear in the front and the glossary of terminology in the back, and his comments in the back. We'll have everything there. All of the Greek will be 50% bold.

However, when we make the pure Greek to put online so it can be used by other people, we are going to make it justified like a regular book, but we're going to unbold it so they can be able to use it. The scholars wouldn't like the bold.

I like the bold; I think it's really great for reading the Greek. That's been a challenge reading the Greek, but I can read it really good now.

When we put it online, I don't if we have to put a separate website, but we'll have it so that anyone who knows Greek can go ahead and follow along. They can copy and paste, read it and we'll have all the footnotes, everything there, so they will be able to see it. This will help them.

One of the big problems, but I got sent to me a Greek manuscript from Cambridge University in England from the Tyndale House in Cambridge. It was put out by this man who claimed to have the most accurate Greek text. So, I had the Gospel of Mark sent to me and the first thing I did was begin reading it; pure Greek.

Within three lines he added thing in there that weren't there. Went along further and on the first page of the Greek text of Mark there were 14 errors compared to the Received Text.

Now you know why the Received Text needs to be online, so there will be a comparison. Someone comes up and says that they have the most accurate Greek text.

  • Where do you base it?
  • How did you come to that?

When you examine it, you find it came from the Vaticanus!

  • Who's behind it?

Think about this: Have you seen the videos on the Jesuit Agenda for the SDA Church. What do you think they're doing with Cambridge University? Remember Westcott and Hort? Do you think the Catholics ever give up on trying to undermine the Protestants? Never! This is to try and make it more Catholic.

How many people would know that, or even know how to find out about that? That's why you have to know some Greek in order to do it. I hope this will help those people. Maybe it won't, we'll find out. If not, at least it's up there!

Scriptural References:

  • John 16:1-3
  • Revelation 2:8-10
  • Proverbs 28:18
  • John 21:12-17
  • Mark 12:28-31
  • Matthew 20:20-28
  • 2 Timothy 2:14-15
  • John 6:44-45
  • Exodus 20:4-6
  • Psalm 29:1-5, 7-9
  • Psalm 25:4-5, 8
  • John 14:6
  • Psalm 25:9-10, 12, 14
  • Deuteronomy 17:14-20
  • Romans 2:14-15
  • Galatians 2:11-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Deuteronomy 6
  • Ephesians 2
  • Revelation 2; 3
  • Matthew 18
  • Romans 7; 6

Also referenced:

Sermon Series:

  • The Last Ten Days of Jesus' Life
  • The Epistle of Paul to the Romans

From: The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version:

  • Appendix X: Exegetical Analysis of Mark 12:29
  • Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law and the Commandments of God

Book: Code of Jewish Law by Ganzfried & Goldman

FRC:bo
Transcribed: 5/31/19

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