Day 49 2010—LIVE

Fred R. Coulter—May 22, 2010

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Today is a special day because of the count toward Pentecost. So let's come to Leviticus 23 and let's look at that again. Then we will see the events that took place when they came to Mount Sinai. Now we covered it concerning counting 50 days, and so forth, so we have that pretty well understood. Now here's something interesting, is that the children of Israel all during the 40 years of wandering, they didn't eat any bread or grain. They had manna. We find something here that's very interesting concerning this day, as it leads up to this day.

Leviticus 23:10—Here's the day after the weekly Sabbath during Unleavened Bread and here is what was to happen. Now we will see that it starts off the 50-day count with a wave sheaf offering, and then it ends up the 50-day count with another different kind of wave sheaf offering.

So he says here, Leviticus 23:10: "Speak to the children of Israel and say to them, 'When you have come into the land which I give to you, and shall reap the harvest of it, then you shall bring the premier sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest.'" Now that is a symbolic type of Christ being accepted by God the Father and ascending to heaven on the Wave Sheaf Offering Day, which is the first day of the week. Then it says what you're to offer on that (v 12) and so forth. Now come down here to v 14. "'And you shall eat neither bread, nor parched grain, nor green ears until the same day, until you have brought an offering to your God. It shall be a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.'"

Now it's recorded in Joshua 5 that sure enough when they got into the land, and it was the Sabbath after the Passover, they had the wave sheaf offering and the next day the manna stopped. So then they were able to eat, first time, imagine that—now remember all those who were over twenty died for their sins while they were wandering in the wilderness. So here you have children now who have grown up—now they're what? Anywhere from if they were one-year-old and anywhere from 41-years up to 60-years who had never tasted bread. Can you imagine what that would be like?

Then he shows how they were to count. There's a reason why it is successive, why they were to count seven Sabbaths or complete weeks, and then it says, let's read what they were to do afterwards and we will see that it is a continuous time period. That's the whole thing that we need to understand, which then is symbolic of the time from the resurrection and acceptance of Jesus Christ until the resurrection of the saints. One continuous time span, not interrupted.

Verse 16: "'Even unto the day after the seventh Sabbath you shall number fifty days.... [Well, today is day 49. Since there's so much to talk about on Pentecost, I'll talk about some of the things of Pentecost today, and then we can finish it up tomorrow.] ...And you shall offer a new grain offering to the LORD.... [Now here's something that's very difficult for some people to understand: during the Days of Unleavened Bread leaven is a type of sin.] ...You shall bring out of your homes two wave loaves... [they were to bake these loaves of bread.] ...of two-tenth parts. They shall be of fine flour. They shall be baked with leaven…. [Every other offering, except the peace offering, had to have unleavened bread. But here this is leaven.] …They are the firstfruits to the LORD'" (vs 16-17). Now why do you suppose he said to put leaven in it? I'll save that for tomorrow—how's that? It has to do with something to do with the resurrection.

Let's come over here to Deuteronomy 16 and let's see another description of what we have here concerning this feast. Then we will go back and see what happened on this first Pentecost with the children of Israel and Moses and the time leading up to it. Now Deut. 16 is interesting because it doesn't say count 50 days. So this is another reason why when studying the Bible and putting it together you have to have a 'little here, a little there' and you put it all together. You can't have one Scripture fighting against another Scripture. So what you do is you combine it together.

Deuteronomy 16:9: "'You shall count seven weeks to yourselves. Begin to count the seven weeks from the time you first began to put the sickle to the grain. And you shall keep the Feast of Weeks... [It's called the Feast of Weeks, the Feast of Firstfruits. When we get to the New Testament it is called the Day of Pentecost, or the Feast of Pentecost. Pentecost means fiftieth and another derivative of it is count fifty. So the New Testament feast connects back to the Old Testament feast. When we put them all together with the New Testament, then we have the understanding of the feast day.] ...And you shall keep the Feast of Weeks to the LORD your God according to the sufficiency of a freewill offering from your hand, which you shall give according as the LORD your God has blessed you. And you shall rejoice before the LORD your God, you, and your son, and your daughter, and your male servant, and your female servant, and the Levite inside your gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, those among you, in the place which the LORD your God has chosen to place His name there'" (vs 9-11).

In the New Testament, wherever two or three are gathered together, Jesus says, there He is in the midst of them. So that's a place that God has chosen. A little different than what it was back then because on most of these major feasts, with the exception of the Passover, they were to come to the temple to keep them.

Let's come back to Exodus 19, and we're going to look at what happened here when they finally got to Mount Sinai. There's also another connection—Old Testament and New Testament:

  • Old Testament—the firstborn were spared on the Passover.
  • New Testament—Jesus Christ the firstborn of God was sacrificed to save the firstborn church.

Now when they left Egypt it took them seven weeks to get to Mount Sinai. They got there on the same day of the week—how do we know Exodus 19:1 is the same day of the week?The same day of the week means—since the exodus began after a middle of the week Passover—that it is on a Thursday. So then you have Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and then you have the first day of the week. So we have three days involved in here after the day that they arrived. So when they arrived they camped (v 2) in front of Mount Sinai. We'll see there's a parallel with that tomorrow concerning Mount Sion for the resurrected saints. So there are many parallels—type/anti-type, Israel/church. Moses had to be pretty strong to get up and down that mountain, because he went up and down that mountain quite a few times.

Exodus 19:3: "And Moses went up to God, and the LORD called to him out of the mountain, saying, 'Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the children of Israel, "You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles' wings and brought you unto Myself.... [They had to walk all the way. The eagles' wings was a type of protection.] ...Now therefore... [And v 5 becomes a key verse in the whole Bible, because every time God deals with people, beginning with Adam and Eve, the same thing. Not only with the children of Israel, but also with us. So all the way through the whole history of the Bible and the teachings of the Bible contained right here in v 5, whether Old Testament with the children of Israel or the covenant with Abraham, because it says he obeyed His voice, or the New Testament church summed up right here]: ...Now therefore, if you will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a Holy nation.' These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel" (vs 3-6).

Now here's something else that God always does, too. He gives you an outline of what He wants you to do and you agree to it. Now what did He tell Adam and Eve? He told them, 'Live in the garden, dress it and keep it. You may eat of every tree of the garden except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.' Correct? What happened? They disobeyed—right? Yes!

Then you come on down to Abraham's time. Just hold your place here and come to Genesis 12. Now let's see the simple proposal that He gave to Abraham. This is how God always does things. He gives you a simple proposal and outline. We will see that He has a simple proposal for the New Testament as well. Genesis 12:1: "And the LORD said to Abram... [Now here's the proposal contained in just three verses.] ...'Get out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house into a land that I will show you. And I will make of you a great nation. And I will bless you and make your name great. And you shall be a blessing. And I will bless those that bless you and curse the one who curses you. And in you shall all families of the earth be blessed'" (vs 1-3). Now how much does that tell us? It gives us an outline—doesn't it?

Like they say, the information is in the details. That came later. What is the proposal in the New Testament? I have it in that 'Evangelical Bible' that I had, which is John 3:16: "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish, but may have everlasting life." Isn't that a proposition that every human being wants? Even as we get old, how many want to die? You really don't want to die until it gets right down to the last of it and there's no other alternative. Then you say, 'Okay, I'm ready to go.'

Just the other day Rachelle had her 36th birthday and the day before she told Jeremy, 'I'm going to be 36 tomorrow.' And he said, 'Are you going to get old, Mommy?' So the next day in order to make her teeth look real old and messy she got some pizza dough and then she put some powder on her face and then she took an eyebrow pencil and put some deep wrinkles on it. She went to sit down to do her work, because she does all of her work at home working for my other son, David. Work at home, that's better than working out. So she's sitting there working away and Jeremy comes up and he looks at her and he started crying. He said, 'Mommy, what happened to you?' 'Well, you asked me if I get old.' So it's the same way. She didn't tell Jeremy what she was going to do. God gives us a general framework. God's plan was to give to Israel His laws, His commandments, His statutes and His judgments and they were to teach the whole world, because God also cares about the whole world. But since He decided to work through Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and the twelve tribes of Israel, now comes the fulfillment of the plan for them. So it's just like a marriage proposal. Isn't a marriage proposal a very few words? Will you marry me? Yes! All the details come later. So that's what this is. This is actually a marriage proposal, as we will see.

Exodus 19:7: "And Moses came and called for the elders of the people, and laid before them all the words which the LORD commanded him. And all the people answered together and said, 'All that the LORD has spoken we will do.'…." (vs 7-8). All right, they said yes. What did Jesus say in Matt. 5 about your 'yes?' 'Let your yes be yes and your no be no.' So they said, 'Yes, we'll do it.' They had no details—did they? Just like with Abraham when he was called. He didn't have any details—just go. Likewise with our lives; when God calls us, we don't know where it's going to go or lead to, because we have to walk in faith. All the details come later.

"…And Moses returned the words of the people to the LORD. And the LORD said to Moses, 'Lo, I come to you in a thick cloud that the people may hear when I speak with you, and believe you forever.' And Moses told the words of the people to the LORD. And the LORD said to Moses, 'Go to the people and sanctify them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their clothes. And be ready for the third day... [So that's what they did. They got everything all ready. The third day was Pentecost.] ...for on the third day the LORD will come down in the sight of all the people upon Mount Sinai'" (vs 8-11).

When that began to happen, v 16: "And it came to pass on the third day in the morning..." Now here you go. Just think you're an Israelite, got all your clothes washed, the best you could do in the wilderness, and all that sort of thing. Shows they had to have quite a bit of water near at hand in order for them to wash all the clothes. They bathed themselves, washed their clothes, they're all dressed up in their Sinai best ready to meet God. You wake up in the morning, here's a beautiful day, nice sunrise. Moses gets you together and says, 'Everybody come up, base of the mountain, here are the borders, don't go through it.' Then all of sudden here comes these dark, dark clouds coming down upon the mountain. "And it came to pass on the third day in the morning that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mountain…."

So they're all standing there looking at this. And it says back in Heb. 12 that there was a whirlwind with it, so there they are all this noise, seeing all of that. You know with dark clouds and lightning, and thunder, I don't know about you, but that really sends shivers down my spine. I remember one time we were chasing down a highway to avoid a tornado and it was so black and it was so dark and the blacktop road with hardly any lines on it, I couldn't see where I was going. We were out in the middle of nowhere. We had the radio on, we were listening where is the tornado going to come. He's going to be in this county and that county and that county. I'm from California, I don't know where are! Jonathan and David were just little kids at that time. So a car passed me and I said, 'That's it. I'll just follow him.' So I stayed right with him until we got to a small town, a motel, and we all jumped out and got in the motel—I didn't crawl under the bed.

So imagine what this is going to be like. Then after all of that happened: "…And the sound of the trumpet... [We're going to see on Pentecost tomorrow that there is a sound of a trumpet on that day for the gathering of the people of God. So you see, you have these parallels, one with the other.] ...the sound of the trumpet was exceedingly loud so that all the people in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet with God. And they stood at the base of the mountain. And Mount Sinai was smoking, all of it because the LORD came down upon it in fire.... [So here's God coming down upon the mountain. I don't know if it was like kind of volcanic ash falling down or if it was lava falling down, I have no idea, but that's kind of the picture that I get.] ...And the smoke of it went up like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly" (vs 16-18).

All of this is going on. All of us who live in California, we're used to earthquakes—aren't we? When you have an earthquake go on and on and on and on, now add to that the sound of the trumpet, the lightning, the thunder; add to that all the other people, everybody's scared to death as it were, and here God has come to meet them.

"And the LORD came down upon Mount Sinai on the top of the mountain. And the LORD called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.... [There he goes again!] ...And the LORD said to Moses, 'Go down. Command the people, lest they break through unto the LORD to gaze, and many of them perish. And let the priests also, who come near to the LORD, sanctify themselves, lest the LORD break forth upon them.' And Moses said to the LORD, 'The people cannot come up to Mount Sinai, for You commanded us saying, "Set bounds around the mountain, and sanctify it."' And the LORD said to him, 'Away! Get you down, and only you shall come up, you and Aaron with you. But do not let the priests and the people break through to come up to the LORD, lest He break forth upon them.' And Moses went down to the people, and spoke to them" (vs 20-25).

Now that's the scene for the receiving of the Ten Commandments. How many here remember traumatic events that happened in their lives? All of us! Would you say this is a traumatic event? You would think they would remember it. That's why God did it this way, so they would remember. All you have to do is go to Exo. 31 when Moses was up on the mountain for 40 days receiving further instructions, what happened? They forgot all about it and had Aaron make the golden calf. Makes you wonder what his occupation was in Egypt.

So God spoke all the Ten Commandments. Now you go through the Ten Commandments and that's the basis of everything in relationship with God. You can go through from here, Exo. 20 back forward to the very first part of Genesis and you will see all the commandments were in effect. You can't have one without the other. Now there are some people who like to pit one commandment against another, but you never should do that.

Let's come down here to Exodus 20:18, since you've all memorized the Ten Commandments, I won't go through it. "And all the people saw the thunderings and the lightnings, and the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking. And when the people saw, they trembled and stood afar off. And they said to Moses, 'You speak with us, and we will hear. But let not God speak with us, lest we die.' And Moses said to the people, 'Do not fear, for God has come to prove you, and so that His fear may be before your faces, so that you may not sin.' And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was. And the LORD said to Moses, 'Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, "You have seen that I have talked with you from the heavens.... [Then He starts giving other laws, starting right out the very first thing, what?] ...You shall not make with Me gods of silver, nor shall you make gods of gold for yourselves"'" (vs 18-23).

The very first thing—remember what it was? 'If you will obey My voice.' So that's the platform. That's what God gave. I want you to read through Exo. 21, 22, and 23, and I want to ask you a question as you go through. Do not all of these commands relate to loving your neighbor as yourself? Yes! Every one of them! So people who say, 'The Old Testament's done away, and so forth. we don't have to follow it.' Let's just take one right here.

Exodus 23:1. This sounds like some of things we suffer with today. "You shall not raise a false report.... [What does most of the news give us today?] ...Do not put your hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness." Then all the way through shows those commands.

Let's come over here to Exodus 24, because we're going to see, just like with a proposal for marriage, there are the words of the covenant and all these words from the Ten Commandments and all the following words, chapters 21, 22, and 23, are all part of the covenant. Now when we come to chapter 24, then you have to have the sealing of the covenant. So let's see how that came about. Remember, the Ten Commandments were given on Pentecost. These other three chapters were probably given later on the same day. Moses came down, told the people.

Here are the last instructions that God gave Moses, Exodus 24:1, as he was going down. "And He said to Moses, 'Come up to the LORD, you and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel, and worship afar off. And Moses alone shall come near the LORD, but they shall not come near. Neither shall the people go up with him.' And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments. And all the people answered with one voice and said, 'All the words which the LORD has said, we will do'" (vs 1-3).

Just like with the marriage ceremony that we have, we go through all the requirements for the marriage ceremony, and then we get to the end of it and we say, 'Do you, the man, take this woman, whatever her name is, to be your lawful wedded wife, to love her, to provide for her, etc. etc, until death do you part.' I do. And to the wife, 'Do you take so-and-so to be your lawful wedded husband, etc., etc.' And she says, 'I do.' So here we have here. People all said, 'We will do it.' Now then, there's a written testimony, just like when you have a lawful marriage, what do you have? You have a marriage license, you have the date that it was given on. You have witnesses to verify that this was done—correct? Yes! So this is what God is doing here.

Verse 4: "And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and built an altar at the base of the mountain and twelve pillars according to the twelve tribes of Israel. And he sent young men of the children of Israel who offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of bullocks to the LORD. And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basins, and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar. And he took the book of the covenant... [Because that's what it is, all these words: the Ten Commandments, chapters 21, 22, and 23. Those are the words of the covenant.] ...and read in the ears of the people. And they said, 'All that the LORD has said we will do, and be obedient'" (vs 4-7). Now, when there is a covenant, there has to be a sacrifice and the shedding of the blood. There has to be the proposal, there has to be the acceptance. God accepted the children of Israel. The children of Israel accepted God. Here are the words of the covenant. They said, 'We will do it.' Now we're going to ratify it with the sacrifice and sprinkling of blood.

Verse 8: "And Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, and said, 'Behold the blood of the covenant... [we'll see a parallel in the New Testament in just a little bit.] ...which the LORD has made with you concerning all these words.'…. [God wanted to make sure that there were witnesses to verify that this was God.] …And Moses went up, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel. And they saw the God Israel... [in His outline form. So we know this could not be the Father, because in the New Testament Jesus said, 'No one has seen God at any time.'] ...And there was under His feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone... [Anybody have a sapphire ring? It's light blue, but you can see through it.] ...sapphire stone, and as it were the heavens in clearness" (vs 8-10). So they could look right through that. Now this was an additional witness for the people to know that these men actually saw God, not direct face to face as Moses did.

Verse 11: "And upon the nobles of the children of Israel He did not lay his hands. Also they saw God, and ate and drank.... [So there was what? A covenant feast! Now this was after Pentecost. We'll see the parallels tomorrow concerning the first resurrection and the marriage supper of the Lamb.] ...And the LORD said to Moses, 'Come up to Me in the mountain, and be there. And I will give you tablets of stone, and the law, and commandments which I have written, so that you may teach them.' And Moses rose up, and his attendant Joshua. And Moses went up into the mountain of God" (vs 11-13).

So apparently Moses, Nadab, Abihu, and the seventy elders of Israel came up far enough so they could look up toward the top of the mountain and see this paving like a platform where God was. They could see through it and they could see the similitude of God. What a tremendous blessing and witness. When they came down, they should have all said, 'Yes, this is true. Yes, we saw God! Yes, this is tremendous!' Just think what the world would have been like if they would have done that. Quite a different place—right?

"And he said to the elders, 'You wait here for us until we come again to you. And behold, Aaron and Hur are with you. If any man has a cause, let him come to them.' And Moses went up into the mountain, and a cloud covered the mountain. And the glory of the LORD abode upon Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And the seventh day He called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud.... [Then He said, 'Come up here, Moses.'] ...And the sight of the glory of the LORD was like a consuming fire on the top of the mountain to the eyes of the children of Israel. And Moses went into the midst of the cloud, and went up into the mountain. And Moses was in the mountain forty days and forty nights" (vs 14-18).

Now then we see another thing mentioned here, which ties in to the Feast of Tabernacles. First thing that God told them after they all agreed. He said, 'Okay, that's fine. Here's what I want you to do.' He started giving them the instructions to make a tabernacle so that He would have a place to dwell with them.

Exodus 25:8: "And let them make Me a sanctuary, so that I may dwell among them." That's quite a thing—isn't it? Now in the New Testament spiritually, with the Holy Spirit, God is not with us, He's dwelling in us. So you see how everything in the New Testament then, is raised to a higher spiritual level.

  • they had the marriage proposal
  • they had the words of the covenant
  • they had the ceremony
  • they had the sprinkling of the blood
  • they had the witnesses

—then God said, 'Okay, I will dwell among them.' Now we'll see some of these things in the New Testament here in just a little bit.

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We will see some other parallels in the New Testament. So let's begin. Let's come here to Matthew 4 and we will some significant parallels. Because this is how God operates. Same way when someone finally decides, 'I'm tired of living in sin,' and they find out well they'll have their sins forgiven. They want that, yeah, they want the sins forgiven—right? Yes! But what else comes with it after that? I don't think they understand the Scripture where Jesus said, 'Go and sin no more.' That hasn't yet come to their mind. So it's the same way with the New Testament.

Now let's look at the proposal here. Matthew 4:17: "From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, 'Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand'.... [So here is a warning message to the world. Now we're a little over two thousand years from that time, not quite two thousand, but somewhere around there. So 'at hand' has the meaning in your life now, the Kingdom of God is going to have its jurisdiction over you if you repent, and a prophetic message for the future.] ...And as Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a large net into the sea; for they were fishermen…. [Now we find from John 2 that they had met Jesus earlier, but now is the time for Him to call them to be His disciples.] …And He said to them, 'Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.'" (vs 17-19). That's an easy proposition—isn't it? Not very much involved, is there? So it's the same way. It's like, 'Well, will you marry me?' Of course! A lot comes after that and just think of the lives of the apostles and all they went through.

Let's come to Matthew 17 and see something else. This was given so that these three men, Peter, James and John, would understand Who Jesus was. But He didn't tell all the rest of the disciples yet. Just like when He talked to Moses the first time, gave the proposal, He didn't give all the rest of the words—did He? But he saw God. Now the purpose of this is so that they would understand that Jesus was God manifested in the flesh. Let's see it here.

Matthew 17:1: "And after six days, Jesus took with Him Peter and James and his brother John, and brought them up into a high mountain by themselves. And He was transfigured before them; and His face shined as the sun, and His garments became white as the light" (vs 1-2). Now then you can ask the question, 'Who is this?' For they knew it was Jesus, but what does this mean? Peter didn't understand it.

Verse 4: "And Peter answered and said to Jesus, 'Lord, it is good for us to be here. If You desire, let us make three tabernacles here; one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.'"

 Because v 3 there appeared to them Moses and Elijah talking with Him. Now why would He have Moses and Elijah? What do they represent? Now this is a vision, remember, just a vision. Why would He have Moses and Elijah? Because that represents the Law and the Prophets—right?—now Christ standing between them.

"While he was speaking, a bright cloud suddenly overshadowed them... [Sound a little bit like Mount Sinai?] ...and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, 'This is My Son, the Beloved, in Whom I delight. Listen to Him!' And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces in extreme terror…. [Sound like the children of Israel afraid when they heard the voice of God? Yes, indeed!] …But Jesus came and touched them, and said, 'Arise, and do not be terrified.' And when they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus alone. Now as they were descending from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying, 'Tell the vision to no one until the Son of man has risen from the dead.'…. [They didn't understand what that meant except 'keep it quiet, guys.'] …Then His disciples asked Him, saying, 'Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?' And Jesus answered and said to them, 'Elijah shall indeed come first and restore all things. But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him; but they did to him whatever they desired. In like manner also, the Son of man is about to suffer from them.' Then the disciples understood that He was speaking to them about John the Baptist" (vs 5-13).

Let's go ahead a little further. Let's come to Matthew 26, and let's see now where there was a New Covenant; and remember, every covenant is established with blood.

  • The covenant with Abraham (Gen. 15)
  • The covenant with Abraham and Isaac (Gen. 22)
  • The covenant with Israel at Mount Sinai
  • Now the covenant for the New Testament is coming and it's going to be established in blood.

Well, since Christ was only going to be sacrificed once and shed His blood once, then there had to be a showing of the evidence of that sacrifice beforehand, and that's found in the Passover.

So let's pick it up here at Jesus' last Passover, Matthew 26:26: "And as they were eating, Jesus took the bread and blessed it; then He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, 'Take, eat; this is My body'.... [So the bread is part of the covenant feast—right? Yes! Just like the covenant when 70 of the elders and Joshua and Moses saw God, they ate and drank in His presence—right? Now since He had to die, He was going to be arrested at midnight just a few hours after He did this.] ...'Take eat; this is My body.' And He took the cup; and after giving thanks, He gave it to them, saying, 'All of you drink of it. For this is My blood, the blood of the New Covenant, which is poured out for many for the remission of sins'" (vs 26-28). That establishes the New Covenant. You go back and go through the sermon about the covenant with Abraham and it's on the same night that He had the covenant with Abraham. So there's a parallel there.

Now let's come to Matthew 28:16 and let's see some of Jesus' final instructions here: "Now the eleven disciples went into Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had appointed for them to meet Him…. [Again a mountain, probably the Mount of Transfiguration.] …And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him... [Meaning, they understood that He was God.] ...but some doubted.... [Now that's after they had already seen Him raised from the dead.] (Then notice what Jesus said): ...And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, 'All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me" (vs 16-18).

Now that's all inclusive—isn't it? So let's understand something: Nothing is done contrary to the will of God, even people sinning. Because God has given free moral agency and choice and if they choose to sin, they will suffer the penalty of sin, which is misery and wretchedness until they die the first death. If they insist on that, then at the second resurrection, it will be the second death—all authority. Now this is why no man can take to himself any authority that belongs to God. Christ delegates and He didn't give us the authority as ministers to be between God and the people. You read what Paul wrote. He says, 'We,' including himself with the brethren.

Verse 19, notice what they were to do: "Therefore, go and make disciples in all nations... [Is that a broad statement? Yes, it is! Did He give them any details? No, He didn't, because they were to use their own initiative following Christ.] (Notice the parameters of that initiative): ...baptizing them into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit; teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you… [Exactly what God told Moses to do—right? Teach the people, write it down.] …and lo, I am with you always, even until the completion of the age.' Amen" (vs 19-20).

Now notice the parallels there. Now let's look at another parallel: after Jesus had been crucified, put in the grave, was in there three days and three nights. Now here in John 20 [corrected] we find something very interesting. You can look in one of the appendices and you can see the three days and three nights that Jesus was in the tomb. And on the first day of the week He ascended into heaven. He rose late on the Sabbath, but did not ascend to heaven until the day after the weekly Sabbath during Unleavened Bread. That's when the wave sheaf was offered back in Lev. 23 as the first of the firstfruits.

So here we have it, John 20:1: "Now on the first day of the weeks..." And that's what that phrase literally means. Then we'll just summarize it down to a point here. Mary Magdalene went there, came to the tomb, it was open and empty. She ran back and told Peter and John. They ran to the tomb, came and saw that the tomb was empty, they saw the grave clothes lying there with the face napkin wrapped up and placed in another place. They didn't know where Jesus had gone.

Now then Mary stood there and she was wondering, v 11: "But Mary stood outside the tomb weeping... [That is after the disciples went away.] ...and as she wept, she stooped down and looked into the tomb. And she saw two angels in white who were sitting, one at the head and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had been laid. And they said to her, 'Woman, why are you weeping?' She said to them, 'Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him.' And after saying these things, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, 'Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?' Thinking that He was the gardener, she said to Him, 'Sir, if you have carried Him off, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away. Jesus said to her, 'Mary.' Turning around, she said to Him, 'Rabboni'; that is to say, 'Teacher.' Jesus said to her, 'Do not touch Me, because I have not yet ascended to My Father. But go to My brethren and tell them that I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God'" (vs 11-17). So she went and told them that.

Verse 19: "Afterwards, as evening was drawing near that day, the first day of the weeks... [That's when the wave sheaf offering was given. Then count 50 days to Pentecost.] ...and the doors were shut where the disciples had assembled for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, 'Peace be to you.' And after saying this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples rejoiced because they had seen the Lord" (vs 19-20). So He ascended to the Father on the first day of the weeks. Then what happened? He was seen of them 40 days and 40 nights.

Now let's come to Acts, the first chapter. Makes you wonder about those disciples who after forty days and forty nights they still didn't quite believe. Sometimes it takes awhile for faith to build, belief to build, doesn't all come at once.

Acts 1:1: "The first account I indeed have written, O Theophilus, concerning all things that Jesus began both to do and to teach... [Remember Jesus told them, 'Teach them everything I have commanded you.' Just like Moses wrote down everything that God said, they wrote down everything that Jesus taught. And as Jesus said the Holy Spirit would bring to their remembrance all things that was necessary.] ...until the day in which He was taken up... [Now this is His second ascension to heaven. The first one is on day one of counting toward the 50 days. The second and final one is on the 40th day. Very interesting—isn't it? How long was Moses with God? Forty days! How long did the disciples see Jesus after His resurrection? Forty days! Parallel there.] ...To whom also, by many infallible proofs, He presented Himself alive after He had suffered, being seen by them for forty days, and speaking the things concerning the Kingdom of God. And while they were assembled with Him, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem but to 'await the promise of the Father, which,' He said, 'you have heard of Me. For John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit after not many days'.... [Exactly ten days.] ...So then, when they were assembled together, they asked Him, saying, 'Lord, will You restore the kingdom to Israel at this time?' And He said to them, 'It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father has placed in His own authority. But you yourselves shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be My witnesses, both in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and unto the ends of the earth'" (vs 1-8).

They didn't get to the ends of the earth. But what has gotten to the ends of the earth? The Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments. And these writings today are equivalent to the apostles being there, because all of those who are to do the teachings are to teach what the apostles taught and wrote. Just like the priest and the Levites were to what? Teach the teachings that God gave to Moses—right? Yes! So we are to teach the teachings that Jesus gave to the apostles and their writings. So He wasn't going to restore the kingdom at that time.

"'But you yourselves shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be My witnesses, both in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and unto the ends of the earth.' And after saying these things, as they were looking at Him... [Now I wonder what that experience must have been like? They're all standing there around Jesus, Jesus is talking to them; as they were looking at Him]: ...He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight" (vs 8-9). About that time you'd do a big fat Colombo right? 'What's going on?'

"Now while they were gazing intently up into heaven as He was going up, two men in white apparel suddenly stood by them... [Probably the two that were at the grave previously, 40 days earlier.] ...Who also said, 'You men of Galilee, why do you stand here looking up into heaven? This same Jesus, Who was taken up from you into heaven, shall come in exactly the same manner as you have seen Him go into heaven'" (vs 10-11).

Let's project to when He comes back down. Where is He coming to? The same place He left, Mount of Olives. Now here it talks about the return of Christ, the day of the Lord, Zechariah 14:4: "And His feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall split in two... [Then it's going to really be quite a thing.] …And the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with You" (vs 4-5). Now we have to fill in the blanks with the rest of the Bible to finish it off there, and that's why we have the next feast day coming up after Pentecost, which is the Feast of Trumpets.

Now back to Acts again. So then they all gather together and they cast lots to have Matthias replace Judas, who fell. Let's see some parallels here, Acts 2, that we find at Mount Sinai when the Ten Commandments were given. From that time until this, God put His presence in the temple—right? That's where God had placed His authority. So, therefore, for the Church to begin and for everyone to know that this is from God, and to fulfill the prophecy that was given that the tents of Judah shall be saved first, where did He begin the Church? At the temple!

Now let's ask another question, just to give us some understanding. If it had been in any other place, let's just suppose that what happened here in Acts 2 on Pentecost occurred in Samaria. You think any of the Jews would accept it? No! Who was down in Samaria at this time? Simon Magus! They wouldn't accept it. What do you suppose if it would have happened, let's use a favorite ancient religion that people like to look to today, the Mayas. Then the disciples got in a boat and came over here and said, 'We had a vision from God.' Well, here are all the priests, here are all the Levites, here are all the Pharisees and Sadducees, and they said, 'Where did you come from?' They would say, 'We know it's not of God.'

So because God gave the authority, He put His presence there in the temple, He established the priesthood; that's why He began the Church at the temple and began it on the day of Pentecost, because that fulfills what He started on Pentecost back at Mount Sinai. They were given the law, but they didn't have the power to keep it. They didn't have the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit comes and that's the power to do it.

Let's notice the things that took place here. Acts 2:1: "And when the day of Pentecost, the fiftieth day, was being fulfilled... [Beginning early in the morning, actually the third hour as we find out a little bit later.] ...they were all with one accord in the same place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like the rushing of a powerful wind... [Now we had that back at Mount Sinai. What else was going on at the same time this was taking place? Because they were keeping Pentecost—right? The trumpet was blown on Pentecost as well, because the trumpet was to be blown on every Holy Day. So maybe all of this came together all at once. The trumpet started sounding, the Holy Spirit came like the rushing of a wind]: ...and filled the whole house... [Now that means the whole area where they were, the large room, probably Solomon's Porch, as it was called.] ...where they were sitting. And there appeared to them divided tongues as of fire, and sat upon each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit... [Now then, there was additional speaking—wasn't there? The people heard the Ten Commandments, the words of God—right? Now you have the twelve apostles and since the command was in Matt. 28 to go into all the world—what happened? God miraculously made them speak in other languages.] ...they were all filled with the Holy Spirit; and they began to speak with other languages... [That's what 'tongues' from the King James means.] the Spirit gave them the words to proclaim" (vs 1-4). Of course, the Spirit, the Spirit of the sound mind, the words of God, and that's what they were preaching.

"Now there were many Jews who were sojourning in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven" (v 5). And of course, then we'll pick up the rest of the story tomorrow, on the day of Pentecost. But there we have a parallel—don't we? Yes, indeed! We'll see some others.

Now let's look at another parallel. This is when the Church began. Let's come to Revelation 1. Isn't it interesting that to begin this we have Christ in His glorified form—don't we? So we have the parallels again. Revelation 1:4: "John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace and peace be to you from Him Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come; and from the seven spirits that are before His throne; and from Jesus Christ, the faithful Witness, the Firstborn from the dead, and the Ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him Who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood" (vs 4-5).

When you have understanding from the rest of the Bible how all of these words then have meaning. But if you just pick up the Bible and begin reading here, know nothing of anything else, you have no idea what it's talking about—right?

"And has made us kings and priests to God and His Father; to Him be the glory and the sovereignty into the ages of eternity" (v 6). And ultimately we will see tomorrow that our purpose of being called and being the firstfruits is to what? To be kings and priests with Christ and rule in the kingdom with God—right? Does that not sound like what we read in Exo.19 when God first proposed to the children of Israel, 'you'll be a kingdom of priests to Me'? Yes!

That was to be the letter of the law fulfillment of it. This is the spiritual fulfillment of it, v 7: "Behold, He is coming with the clouds... [How did He go? With the clouds! From where did He go? Mount of Olives! Where is He coming? Mount of Olives! So when you get down to it, God is really simplistic—isn't He? The parallels follow.] ...and every eye shall see Him, and those who pierced Him... [Now how is every eye going to see Him? We'll talk a little bit about that tomorrow. How is Christ coming and what are the events going to look like?] ...and those who pierced Him... [They're already dead and buried—right? How are they going to see Him? We'll explain that tomorrow.] ...and all the tribes of the earth shall wail because of Him. Even so, Amen…. [So then He identifies Himself] …'I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the Ending,' says the Lord, 'Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come—the Almighty'" (vs 7-8).

Then He explains to them about it, v 11: "Saying, 'I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last'; and, 'What you see, write in a book, and send it to the churches that are in Asia: to Ephesus, and to Smyrna, and to Pergamos, and to Thyatira, and to Sardis, and to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.'" Now the message that I recorded for the video to send out ahead of time, I went through the seven churches. So if you want to study that, you can go through that. I like this next sentence:

"And I turned to see the voice that spoke with me... [Now how do you turn to see a voice? That means he turned to look from where the voice was coming.] ...and when I turned, I saw seven golden lampstands; And in the midst of the seven lampstands one like the Son of man... [Now in the midst. What does that mean? If you're in the middle of something, there's got to be a circle around you—right? So you see, the truth is, the seven spirits over here in v 4 equal the lampstand that was in the temple, because the seven spirits that are before His throne. The seven churches are seven separate lampstands, not connected with the temple, but are churches on the earth.] lampstands one like the Son of man, clothed in a garment reaching to the feet, and girded about the chest with a golden breastplate. And His head and hair were like white wool, white as snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire; and His feet were like fine brass, as if they glowed in a furnace; and His voice was like the sound of many waters. And in His right hand He had seven stars, and a sharp two-edged sword went out of His mouth…" (vs 12-16). All showing the characteristics and power of God.

"...and His countenance was as the sun shining in its full power. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as if dead; but He laid His right hand upon me, saying to me, 'Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last, Even the one Who is living; for I was dead, and behold, I am alive into the ages of eternity. Amen. And I have the keys of the grave and of death…. [No one's going to receive eternal life except through Christ, that's it.] …Write the things that you saw, and the things that are, and the things that shall take place hereafter'" (vs 16-19). That's why we have written the New Testament. Look at the confusion out there in the world with it, because they misinterpret it. Think what it would be like if nothing was written and it was all word of mouth, and someone decided to change the story. Just like they do even with the written word—right? That's why we have the book of Revelation. That's why we have the whole Bible, because God intended it to be written. When people start arguing and say, 'Well, it was written by men.' You can ask them, 'Well, how many?' Well, I don't know. 'How about forty?' That's not very many people—is it? You think God can control forty people? Do you believe in God to write what He wanted them to write? Well, yes!

Well, how about the New Testament? How many people wrote the New Testament? Eight! You think God could control eight people? Of course! to write what He told them. That's what John did. What do you think John would write after he saw all of this and Jesus said, 'Write.' He would write what God wanted him to write.

Verse 20: "'The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands, is this: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches; and the seven lampstands that you saw are the seven churches.'" Now what is a church to be? The light of the world! You light a lamp, you put it on a stand—right? You don't put it under a bed or under a bushel basket.

So what do we have here? We have seven churches. Why do we have seven, why don't we have six, why don't we have nine? Are there more churches of God than seven? If there are—why seven? If you go back and look at it, Paul to wrote to seven churches, plus the general epistle called Hebrews. They're not the same seven churches, with the exception of one, possibly two: Ephesus and Laodicea. Why do we have the seven churches?

Do you suppose that the seven weeks to the harvest has anything to do with the seven churches, the prophecy of the churches down through history? Think of it this way: Did God give us the prophecies of the major kingdoms of this world, beginning with Babylon? Yes! Did He give us the history of Israel and the prophecies against Israel and for Israel? Yes, He did! Well, do you suppose that the most important thing in the plan of God to take place being the converted people who formed the Church, that He would have nothing concerning the prophecy of the church? Nothing concerning of what they should do? Nothing concerning of their trials and difficulties in the world? Of course not, that's why we have Rev. 2 and 3—seven churches.

We'll talk a little bit more about it tomorrow. We are the seven churches, as we will see, the harvest of God. So where do the seven churches fit in? They go clear back to the seven weeks of harvest! Just like the wave sheaf offering began the count to Pentecost and the seven weeks, seven churches. We are called the firstfruits of God. Tomorrow we will see how we are harvested, and what was to happen with the finality of the harvest in Lev. 23. They were to bring two loaves of bread made with leaven. Just think about that there in Acts 2 when the Holy Spirit came. What were the priests doing? Waving the loaves! The people had the loaves bringing them to the priests. They had all the courses of the priests, so here on Pentecost came the Holy Spirit and all this ceremony coming together and then the Holy Spirit came to them. Quite a thing!

Now likewise, with the seven churches and the harvest coming down to the resurrection which then will occur, as we will see tomorrow, on Pentecost. So this is why Day 49 becomes important.

Scriptural References:

  • Leviticus 23:10, 14, 16-17
  • Deuteronomy 16:9-11
  • Exodus 19:3-6
  • Genesis 12:1-3
  • John 3:16
  • Exodus 19:7-11, 16-25
  • Exodus 20:18-23
  • Exodus 23:1
  • Exodus 24:1-18
  • Exodus 25:8
  • Matthew 4:17-19
  • Matthew 17:1-2, 4, 3, 5-13
  • Matthew 26:26-28
  • Matthew 28:16-20
  • John 20:1, 11-17, 19-20
  • Acts 1:1-11
  • Zechariah 14:4-5
  • Acts 2:1-5
  • Revelation l:4-8, 11-20

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Leviticus 23:12
  • Joshua 5
  • Exodus 19:1
  • John 3:16
  • Hebrews 12
  • Exodus 31, 20, 21, 22, 23
  • John 2
  • Genesis 15, 22

Also referenced: Sermon: Day 49, 2010

Transcribed: 6-2-10
Formatted: bo—6-4-10