Fred R. Coulter—May 7, 2016

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Greetings, everyone! Welcome to Sabbath services.

William Tyndale:

Just last week Dwight Blevins sent me a little note about William Tyndale. That started out having to do with the calendar. I don't know if you've noticed it, but we haven't had a Wednesday Passover and we won't have one until ten years are past.

The first five years, Trumpets—now we're talking about Trumpets and the day of the week. Trumpets came 2/2—second day of the week, twice in a row. Five, which is Thursday, and then 2/2 again. Just the flip side of that, the last five years will be 5/5/2/5/5.

He went back and he analyzed some of the things concerning what William Tyndale did and the timing of it. That was because I sent him this booklet that we have, actually a spiral-bound book. This is what these series come in, spiral bind. The Obedience of a Christian Man, written by William Tyndale. This is astonishing! Haven't read it in a long time, but I know when I read it I was greatly inspired. We also have the booklet, Tribute to William Tyndale.

What we're going to do is take that booklet, put it together with The Obedience of the Christian Man, because this book that Tyndale wrote was one of the things that led King Henry VIII to reject the rule of the Roman Catholic Church. He took over as head of the church. That was less innocuous than the pope, but nevertheless, it was still a mistake.

Sidebar: Queen Elizabeth is the titular head of the Church of England. She decreed no homosexual marriages. At least she did that good. We can thank her for that.

However, Dwight recommended in his e-mail to me that every minister ought to have The Obedience of the Christian Man, which is really quite profound. It shows that those who are in authority in the Church are not to raise themselves up as potentates and rulers. We're seeing that happen again within the Church of God. There are two churches in particular that really oppress the brethren and put them down.

I want to have all of this made up and Ken is going to have it sent back for me for the conference. We're going to give it to everybody who attends the conference, not the Sabbath services, but everybody who attends the conference.

There's the mistaken belief, and it was preached for years, that the ministry is the government of God. That is not true! There is order we need within the Church, and that order does not come about by authoritarianism. If it's necessary to use authority and taking care of renegades, fine. If it's necessary to use the authority for casting out demons, fine.

But it was preached at one time that a man who was supposed to be an apostle, and he was not like William Tyndale, that if you didn't obey his voice, you were disobeying God. That's the thing that's not true. If you disobey what God says, then you're rebelling against God.

If a man tells you something that is not in accord with the Word of God, and this was the whole premise of what William Tyndale wrote, that even in his day the reason that everything was all mixed up was because people were following philosophies of men, leadership of men. They were told that the masses couldn't have the Bible. They couldn't read it; they wouldn't understand it, and that the clergy was in charge and the clergy ruled over the people.

One of the things William Tyndale is famous for is when one friar said to him, when they were eating at, I think, the Welshman's house, saying, 'We'd be better off without God's law than the pope's law.' So, Tyndale told him, 'I defy the pope and all his laws; e'er God give me the strength, I will make it so the boy behind the plow will know more about the Word of God than the pope himself.'

That's the kind of spirit that he wrote in. Fierce! Truthful! He said Truth counts; nothing else that isn't the Truth of God we don't need. He also denounced very strongly the way that the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church worked.

Since Dwight recommended that we get this together for all the elders, I'm going to do that. I was reading part of it today. I even forgot that we had it. I was talking about it with Ken and he said, 'We have that.' I said, 'We do?' So, he ran down and got it and gave it to me. The cover was done by Nathan Vogele and they made him look a little younger here, so that's good.

Tyndale started at Oxford University at age 12 and he knew seven European languages, as if it were own native language. He could start speaking in one language, shift over to another, and to another without any hesitation at all. Except I'm sure when he got to the German he had to straighten out the verbs shifting over. Some of the German verbs come at the end. That's why everybody's sitting there waiting, waiting for the end to come. Finally the final verb comes and everybody gets excited in German.

I could talk about politics. Everybody's putting their hopes on Trump. He may do some things. He may not do some things. Who knows what will happen. But I tell you, one thing caught my attention—he's got a lot of bombast, etc.—he said, 'We're going to make the country great again and we're going to love one another.' That sort of took me aback. Have you ever heard a politician say anything like that? So, we'll just have to wait and see.

The "I AM":

I want to cover something today that I did clear back in 1980-something. I did a verse-by-verse series, going through the Gospel of John. We have that; that's a big thick one. That was just before I started translating, so I was explaining what the th means, and eth, and so forth in the King James.

One of the subdivisions that I did, which was part of the sermon series: Names of God, was a sermon entitled, I AM That I AM. That becomes very profound when we get to the book of John. This becomes very interesting indeed!

John 20:30: "Now then, Jesus did many other miracles in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book. But these have been written, so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing, you may have life through His name" (vs 30-31).

If there were an 'Amen' there, that would have been the end of the Gospel of John. However, we have John 21, and it is very interesting because there's the evidence that this was added by John himself after Peter died, because he didn't want to embarrass Peter.

This is why we have the section where Jesus asked Peter three times, 'Do you love Me? Feed My sheep, feed My lambs, etc.' Notice there is a little competition with Peter and John. Remember when they ran to the tomb? John got there first! So, Jesus told Peter this:

John 21:18: "Truly, truly I say to you, since you were young, you have dressed yourself and walked wherever you have desired; but when you are old, you shall stretch out your hands, and another shall dress you and bring you where you do not desire to go."

Some say this is a prediction of how he would die. Possibly, but I think He's telling him, 'When you are old, you're going to need the assistance of someone else to help you, even dress yourself.'

Verse 19: "Now, He said this to signify by what death he would glorify God. And after saying this, He said to him, 'Follow Me.' But when Peter turned, he saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also had sat at the supper and leaned on His chest, and had said, 'Lord, who is it that is betraying You?' Seeing him, Peter said to Jesus, 'Lord, what shall happen to this one?' Jesus said to him, 'If I desire that he remain alive until I come, what is it to you? You follow Me'" (vs 19-22).

Very interesting, here it is the second time. Now like everything else, this became wildfire in the Church. You know what that is like.

Verse 23: "Then this saying went out among the brethren, that that disciple would not die. However, Jesus did not say to him that he would not die; but, 'If I desire that he remain alive until I come, what is it to you?'"

He did see the return of Christ in vision through the book of Revelation before he died. Notice the next verse; this becomes interesting in understanding why the Gospel of John is different than the other Gospels. Though it is singular, it doesn't relate as much to each of the three Gospels: Matthew, Mark and Luke. Those are called the Synoptic Gospels. So we have those three.

Verse 24: "This is the disciple who testifies concerning these things and who wrote these things; and we know that his testimony is true." Why does he shift from third person, singular, 'this disciple,' referring to himself. Who are the we?

What does God say concerning witnesses? How many do you need? Two or three! John could not signify and say, 'I signify that this is true.' One witness wouldn't have been enough. This is a telltale sign of the canonization of the New Testament where there was Andrew, Philip—probably Timothy and Mark—who helped put together the whole New Testament. There are other telltale signs of canonization, too. However, John 21 itself is a telltale sign of canonization, because you could have ended it at the end of chapter twenty. Just put an 'Amen' there.

We have more than one witness. The Word of God is true, because we—that's very unusual to have that inserted there, but that was put there to verify that this was true.

We'll see it again. When they were finalizing the New Testament, there were things that they were adding to it and we find the same thing again, only this time in reverse order.

1-John 2 may have been part of the original; chapter one had some modification added to it, because we'll see that in just a minute. Which is fine, because God wanted it in there.

1-John 1:1: "That which was from the beginning, that which we have heard, that which we have seen with our own eyes…" That means those who were alive with John seeing Christ in the flesh—we.

"…that which we observed for ourselves…" (v 1)—a gawking penetrating observation of what you saw. You've seen little children when you go in the store and in your own children. When they fix their eyes on someone, their eyes are glued on that individual. This is what it means: we observed for ourselves.

"…and our own hands handled…" (v 1). That tells us that whoever the we were, they were in the room when Jesus appeared to the disciples after His resurrection and said, 'Handle Me, touch Me, see that it is Me.' Then He said, 'Do you have something to eat? So, they gave Him a honeycomb and fish. By the way, honey and fish taste really good. I've done that. When you read things like this, you read along, you're just reading. There's a whole lot that doesn't meet the eye, being removed by centuries.

"…and our owns hands handled, concerning the Word of life; (And the life was manifested, and we have seen, and are bearing witness, and are reporting to you the eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested to us); that which we have seen and have heard we are reporting to you in order that you also may have fellowship with us; for the fellowship—indeed, our fellowship—is with the Father and with His own Son Jesus Christ" (vs 1-3).

This is talking about what we say today, you have to have a personal relationship with God. Fellowship! This is what is so important. God never wants a hierarchy between God and the individual!

We all have to work together. We all have to love each other, serve God and do the things we need to do.

  • do it in order
  • do it in love
  • do it with determination

All of that is important and we need to do it. That comes with the Spirit of God. That comes with how the elders need to teach the brethren, as well.

I got this one book from this one minister that there's no way he can't be named a little later on, but in just a couple of pages he had 50 'I's.

"…—indeed, our fellowship—is with the Father and with His own Son Jesus Christ." What does John 14 tell us about the Holy Spirit? That 'if you love Me, you will keep My Word and the Father will love you and We will make Our abode with you.' That is, dwell with you.

That is direct connection with God the Father and Jesus Christ. That's the fellowship He wants us to have. This is how we grow to be the spiritual sons and daughters of God the Father and Jesus Christ and develop the character.

Verse 4: "These things we are also writing to you, so that your joy may be completely full." The only way you can go through difficult times is if you have this kind of fellowship with God the Father and Jesus Christ.

Verse 5—"…we have heard from Him…"
Verse 6: "If we proclaim that we have fellowship with Him, but we are walking in the darkness, we are lying to ourselves, and we are not practicing the Truth."

They are including all of themselves. So whomever it was there with John, those apostles who were helping in the canonization of the New Testament, what were they doing? They were including themselves in this, as well. Especially when you read 2nd and 3rd John that there many antichrists and even ended up Diotrephes kicked John out of the local congregation. How's that?

Verse 7: "However, if we walk in the Light, as He is in the Light, then we have fellowship with one another…"—and with God the Father and Jesus Christ. That's why prayer and study are so important. That's how the fellowship develops, grows, and it grows over time.

We've got a lot of people who have been in the Church a long, long time. We've got a lot of them that are coming to the edge, of what is known in the world, as the demographic cliff. The demographic cliff is so many people are at such an age that many of them are going to die before the next election.

It's the same way in the Church. We have a lot of people up in their 80s. We had one woman live to be 102-years-old, I believe it was. I remember when I traveled back there to the Northeast and we would meet there in Manchester, New Hampshire, that when we were singing the hymns, she was always in the first row there so I would sing hymns with her. We had a great time that way and it was really great. Turned out fine. She finally passed on.

We're going to have a lot of people pass on; that's part of God's plan. Instead of saying, 'The Church is getting old and dying out,' we need to say, 'God is taking them to their place of safety so they won't have to face what we have to face.'

"…and the blood of Jesus Christ, His own Son, cleanses us from all sin" (v 7).

William Tyndale writes, 'Why do you need to go to a priest to confess your sins? How can you have your sins forgiven if you tell the priest only part of your sins and you retain the other part of your sins? How can he forgive your sins?' He can't!

Verse 8: "If we say that we do not have sin… ['we're all good people, never sinned in my life'] …we are deceiving ourselves, and the Truth is not in us." Notice how they're including themselves in this. That's important in understanding about the canonization of the New Testament. The apostles understood that they were to serve God and to educate the brethren.

Verse 9: "If we confess our sins… [admitting they still had sins they had to confess] …He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us" (vs 9-10). Never happen!

Abrupt change, 1-John 2:1: "My little children, I am writing these things to you…" An abrupt change. All the way through here it is 'I am writing, Iam writing, Iwrote.' But with the authority also of all of those who were with him. Very interesting, indeed!

We're going to understand some things from the Gospel of John concerning our relationship with God and Who God is and why this is so important. It also verifies that Jesus Christ, before He came in the flesh, was the Lord God of the Old Testament!

Sidebar on sacred names: Jesus said, 'Father, I reveal Your name to them' (John 17). Sacred names in the New Testament are:

  • the Father
  • Jesus Christ, His own Son

All the sacred names from the Old Testament have meaning and understanding to us and for us. We're going to learn something concerning sacred names, so let's come back here to the book of Exodus.

Isn't it interesting, all of those who say that we need to use sacred names…. Every once in a while I get an e-mail from someone who says, 'You're blaspheming because you use the word Lord instead Yahweh.' You know the truth is, the pronunciation of YHVH the Jews cannot even verify. We are not in the relationship with God that the children of Israel were. They did not have the Holy Spirit.

The patriarchs were in a special relationship with Him and we find that with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. We will see that God appeared to them as El Shaddai, the Almighty God.
Another very interesting thing, when you come to the book of Revelation, it is the Lord God Almighty. Very interesting. So, there are many things that we're going to tie in with this.

Exodus 6:2: "And God spoke to Moses, and said to him, 'I am the LORD.… [YHVH] …And I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob as God Almighty. But I was not known to them by My name JEHOVAH'" (vs 2-3).

Are Abraham, Isaac and Jacob going to be in the Kingdom of God, not knowing the name of YHVH?—and Jehovah is probably the best pronunciation of it—yes, they are! The covenant names that God had with Israel are different than the covenant names that He has with the Church.

After God told Moses to go ask for the release of the people, Exodus 3:13: "And Moses said to God, 'Behold, when I come to the children of Israel, and shall say to them, "The God of your fathers has sent me to you," and they shall say to me, "What is His name?" What shall I say to them?' And God said to Moses, 'I AM THAT I AM.'…. [we're going to see that has a great deal of information about that in the Gospel of John] …And He said, 'Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, "I AM has sent me to you."'" (vs 13-14). As we will see in the Gospel of John and the book of Revelation, this becomes very powerful indeed.

Verse 15: "And God said to Moses again, 'You shall say this to the children of Israel, "The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My title from generation to generation."'" I AM THAT I AM!

There's also one variation of it, which could read I WILL BE WHAT I SHALL BE. What bearing does this have in the New Testament? We don't find any of it in Matthew, Mark or Luke. But we find it in John.

The opening of John we've covered many, many times, John 1:1: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and not even one thing that was created came into being without Him. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness but the darkness does not comprehend it" (vs 14-5).

This could also be added in the final canonization, because v 6 looks like a natural start: "There was a man sent by God, whose name was John. He came for a witness, that he might testify concerning the Light, so that through him all might believe" (vs 6-7). We can see that a proper editing was done to clarify what we have here.

What we are going to see, we're going to focus on something else explaining about Jesus. When you read the King James Version it doesn't bring this out.

They came out to get Him and Jesus asked them, John 18:4: "…'Who are you seeking?' They answered Him, 'Jesus the Nazarean.' Jesus said to them, 'I AM.'…. [Why do I have that in capital letters?] …And Judas, who was betraying Him, was also standing with them. But when He said to them, 'I AM,' they went backward and fell to the ground" (vs 5-6).

Think about that! Here is the squad of soldiers, like the sheriff and the deputies coming to arrest you. Jesus said, 'I AM,' and they fell over backwards. That must have been astonishing to them. I wonder what they thought. Why is this capitalized? In the Greek there are two words for I AM:

  • 'ego'
  • 'eimi'

When you have 'ego eimi' you have an emphatic that I AM, emphatic. It's not restricted to just Jesus' use of it, but when Jesus uses it this way, this is going right back to the book of Exodus defining who He was: I AM THAT I AM!

Here comes a congressional investigation, or let's put it this way: a Sanhedrin investigation about John. Who is he? They all knew about how he was born. All the priesthood understood it.

They remembered that Zacharias was in there and the angel Gabriel came and talked to him. They remembered that in their 70s Zacharias and Elizabeth had a baby boy. They didn't need any cell phones; they didn't need telephones; everybody talked about it. They had plenty of time to talk about it because they had no television to watch, so they knew.

They said this went all about the hill country of Judea. All of a sudden here is this priest's son, who was never taught any of the priestly rituals, who never went to the temple. It said John stayed in the wilderness until his day of appearance. He didn't cut his hair or drink wine or strong drink, or even eat grapes. All of a sudden John appears at the River Jordan and starts preaching repentance and that he was sent as a messenger before the face of the Lord.

The Sanhedrin wanted to know, 'Who is this guy? We remember the circumstances of his birth. Here 30 years later, here he is doing this. Why is he doing that?'

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Here is the Transcript Book, Names of God, with a CD that goes with it that covers all the names of God and the series of sermons. We go through the book, The Names of God, by Andrew Jukes. I did a sermon, I AM that I AM, which is in this book, but this sermon is going to be different than what I did in what we have now.

Let's see about this Sanhedrin committee. Let's see what we can discern from what is said.

John 1:19: "And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, 'Who are you?'" This was a very important occasion for them. They didn't send a messenger down there, they sent priests and Levites—officials. This is an official visit.

Verse 20: "Then he freely admitted, and did not deny, but declared, 'I am not the Christ.'" Here he used the emphatic 'ego eimi,' "…I am not the Christ." Why would he say that? Because they were looking for the Christ!

Verse 21: "And they asked him, 'Then who are you? Are you Elijah?'…" What does this tell us? They understand Mal. 4. Remember Matt. 2 when Herod sent out the wise men? When they first came and presented themselves to Herod, and he found out they came to worship the King of the Jews, and of course, Herod was the king of the Jews, so what did they do?

They called the priests and everything, and said, 'Where was the King of the Jews to be born?' They said, 'Bethlehem'! Jesus was born in Bethlehem. How did that work out? Very carefully! Joseph and Mary did not live in Bethlehem, but they came from Nazareth where He was born in Bethlehem. Then they went down into Egypt to get away from the killing of the children and came back after Herod had died.

"'…Are you Elijah?' And he said, 'I am not.' Then they asked, 'Are you the Prophet?'…." (v 21). Why would they ask that? That tells you they knew the Scriptures.

This shows they knew this, Deuteronomy 18:15: "The LORD your God will raise up unto you a Prophet from the midst of you, of your brethren, One like me.…" What was Moses? Moses was priest, prophet, and ruler. The only other one like that was Samuel. So, to ask that question, they knew what they were looking for.

"'…To Him you shall hearken, according to all that you desired of the LORD your God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, "Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, so that I do not die"'" (vs 15-16). That was really quite an experience, all those people. They were gathered at Mt. Sinai.

Verse 17: "And the LORD said to me, 'They have spoken well what they have spoken.'" They were well intended, but they really didn't want to hear the voice of God. Doesn't that apply today? Do people want to hear the voice of God? No!

Now because they wanted a man to speak to them, God promised that He would send a Man to speak to them. Because they said, 'God, you tell Moses and Moses tell us, we'll do it.' Well, they never did it. So, God was going to send a Man, the Prophet. They didn't anticipate it that it would be God Himself.

That's why the New Testament is so fantastic, because the whole New Testament is this. If you ask the question, 'What would God tell me if I could talk to Him myself?' That's such an important question, that He had all the New Testament written down, especially the four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

You want to know what God would tell you face-to-face? Read Matthew, Mark, Luke and John! That's what He would tell you. Personal message recorded. At that time they didn't have it.

Verse 18: "I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, One like you…" Who did Jesus descend from? David, Abraham! The true lineage, genealogically is in Luke 3. A lot of people can't figure out why the genealogies are different in Matt. 1 and Luke 3. I'll just summarize it for you:

The physical genes from David did not come from Solomon, because he sinned so greatly. Rather, the legal line down to Jesus came through Solomon (Matt. 1) to Joseph. The genetic line came from Mary's father down through Nathan, the son of David, rather than Solomon. So, there are a lot of subtleties in the Bible that people just don't pick up on.

When someone tries to reconcile the two chronologies, Matthew and Luke, they can't do it. Joseph was the son-in-law of Mary's father Eli. So, it runs from Eli all the way down to Adam. When God does something, He does it really well.

Notice how important this is, "…One like you, and will put My words in His mouth.…" (v 18). What did Jesus say? 'I speak nothing but what the Father told Me!' This was a prophecy of the Father concerning Christ.

"…And He shall speak to them all that I shall command Him. And it shall come to pass, whatever man will not hearken to My words, which He shall speak in My name, I will require it of him" (vs 18-19).

When they came down to talk to John and asked him, 'Are you the Prophet?' They knew exactly what they were asking. We're going to see something interesting concerning John himself. Many times the person, who is doing what they're supposed to be doing, does not even know that they were named by God.

Sidebar on Elijah: What did Jesus say concerning John the Baptist? This was Elijah! John didn't say, 'Don't you read the Scriptures? I'm Elijah.' NO! Notice what he said:

John 1:22: "Therefore, they said to him, 'Who are you? What do you say about yourself so that we may give an answer to those who sent us?'…. [they had to get back with an official report] …He said, 'I am a voice crying in the wilderness… [Isa. 40] …" Make straight the way of the Lord," as Isaiah the prophet said.' Now, those who had been sent belonged to the sect of the Pharisees, and they asked him…" (vs 22-25).

This sounds like a congressional committee. You see those on television. This congressman asks this question; this one asks this one; the senator asks this, etc.

"…saying to him, 'Why then are you baptizing, if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?'" (v 25). That's an all-inclusive question. 'Why are you doing this if you're not important?' That's what they're saying.

Verse 26: "John answered them, saying, 'I baptize with water, but there is one Who stands among you Whom you do not know. He it is Who comes after me, but Who has precedence over me; of Whom I am not worthy to loose the thong of His sandal.' These things took place in Bethabara across the Jordan, where John was baptizing" (vs 26-28).

Let's go forward with some of these other Scriptures here concerning Jesus. When Jesus defines Himself, He uses 'ego eimi.'

He said, John 6:48: "I AM the Bread of Life." Every time He says that it is 'ego eimi.'

John 8:18: "'I AM One Who bears witness of Myself, and the Father, Who sent Me bears witness of Me.' Then they said to Him, 'Where is Your Father?'…." (vs 18-19). They knew all the circumstances of His birth, not from the truth, but from the gossip, that Mary must have been pregnant by another man.

"…Jesus answered, 'You know neither Me nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would also have known My Father.' Jesus spoke these words in the treasury while teaching in the temple; but no one arrested Him because His time had not yet come. Then Jesus said to them again, 'I am going away; and you shall seek Me, but you shall die in your sin. Where I am going, you are not able to come.' Therefore, the Jews said, 'Will He kill Himself? Is that why He says, "Where I am going, you are not able to come"?'" (vs 19-22).

Notice what He tells them very clearly. Here are Jews, gathered at the temple, those who think that they were the chosen people, which they were if they repent.

Verse 23: "And He said to them, 'You are from beneath; I am from above…'" Remember what He told His disciples: What would you think if you saw angels ascending and descending on Me, or I ascend up where I came from?

"'…You are of this world; I am not of this world. That is why I said to you that you shall die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I AM… ['ego eimi' in the emphatic form] …you shall die in your sins'" (vs 23-24).

You must believe in Jesus Christ. You cannot have your sins forgiven unless you believe. And also believe that I AM, going back to Exo. 3, I AM THAT I AM, and tying it with Deut. 18; all of that together.

Verse 25: "Then they said to Him, 'Who are You?' And Jesus said to them, 'The One that I said to you from the beginning. I have many things to say and to judge concerning you; but He Who sent Me is true, and what I have heard from Him, these things I speak to the world.' But they did not know that He was speaking to them of the Father. Then Jesus said to them, 'When you have lifted up the Son of man… [that's talking about crucifixion. They understood what that meant] …then you yourselves shall know that I AM…'" (vs 25-28)—'ego eimi.' This is why it's so important that we understand that no other human being:

  • has any power to forgive sin
  • has any power as a substitute death for you
  • has any power in His shed blood to forgive your sins

Since God is interested in all human beings, it has to be God Himself in the flesh Who came to die. Here's another prophecy of His crucifixion:

John 3:14: "And even as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, in the same way it is ordained that the Son of man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish…'" (vs 14-15). This is different than die. Perish means no longer exist, no hope!

1-Corinthians 15:12: "But if Christ is being preached, that He rose from the dead, how is it that some among you are saying that there is no resurrection of the dead? For if there is no resurrection from the dead, neither has Christ been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain, and your faith is also in vain. And we are also found to be false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that He raised Christ, Whom He did not raise, if indeed the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, neither has Christ been raised. But if Christ has not been raised, your faith is vain; you are still in your sins, and those who have fallen asleep in Christ have then perished" (vs 12-18).

Fallen asleep means to die the first death, have perished; so there's a difference between dying and having hope of a resurrection, first or second. Then they have perished. That's the same word that is used back here in John 3.

John 3:15: "…may not perish, but may have everlasting life." I'll say it again because it needs to be said there every time. May is subjunctive meaning there are conditions. It's not shall or should, it is may. This is why it has to be God Himself come in the flesh, I AM, to die

Verse 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."

That is all-inclusive. I'm sure that there would be atheists who would read this and say, 'Well, how about all of those before Christ came?' Good question! How does the Bible handle that? If you keep the Holy Days you know! There is a second resurrection, because they are sleeping waiting for the second resurrection. All of those who are sleeping in Christ are waiting for the first resurrection to eternal life.

So, this verse is all inclusive. All the people going back to the time of Adam, everyone clear to the end of the age, and the only way that the sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins could come about is if God gave up His Divinity, with the exception of just a little bit of amount, so He would continue existing and die for the sins of mankind. Otherwise, God created all those people in vain. But God doesn't do anything in vain.

John 8:28: "Then Jesus said to them, 'When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you yourselves shall know that I AM… ['ego eimi'] …and that I do nothing of Myself. But as the Father taught Me, these things I speak. And He Who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone because I always do the things that please Him" (vs 28-29).

That's also the goal of our life that we do the things that please Him and keep His commandments, with the power of the Holy Spirit. (1-John 3:22transcriber's correction)

Verse 30: "And He spoke these things, many believed in Him." How deep was that belief? There are a lot of people who say they believe in Jesus, but if you don't believe Who He was and what He says, that's why John wrote 1st, 2nd and 3rd John, 'The one who says I know Him and does not keep His commandments is a liar.' You'll see a lot of convincing liars on a Trinity Broadcasting Channel.

Just the other night I saw old Kenneth Copeland. Remember the one with Doug Palmer and the pope? That was quite a thing! He was talking about being 'born again.' 'What happens instantaneously? Many would believe.' Those people there with him believe, but how deep do they believe and what do they know?

What did Jesus say? It's probably going to be a couple of sermons. He said, 'I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.' He also said, 'The Father Himself draws them.' They are both involved! The call to salvation and conversion is the direct spiritual action of God in our lives through the power of the Holy Spirit. Not just a little 'fluff-fluff' thing that you believe and everything is fine and we have nice little 'patty-cakes,' and be sure and put a good offering in at the end of the service. NO!

Just like Jesus said here: 'I always do the things that please Him.' Verse 30: "As He spoke these things, many believed in Him. Therefore, Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in Him… [notice what's required:] …If you continue in My Word, you are truly My disciples'" (vs 30-31). Now reverse that: If you do not continue in My word, you are not My disciples! Isn't that true? Yes, indeed.

Verse 32: "And you shall know the Truth, and the Truth shall set you free." Powerful statement here! We've seen it many times, you start out almost like a little pinprick of something and then it expands and expands. The Truth shall set you free.

Notice what they said: O Lord, tell us what we need to do; O Lord, that's wonderful. No, they were smug, complacent, relying on their genetic inheritance that because 'we are who we are in the flesh, we will be saved.' 1-John 3:16 says everyone. Other Scriptures show all people.

Verse 33: "They answered Him, 'We are Abraham's seed, and have never been in bondage to anyone…'" Have you seen the picture in the front of the Holy Bible in Its Original Order, a picture of the temple area. From Fort Antonia there was a runway that came down and went all around the temple area. Roman guards stood right over them. They were in bondage to Rome and Satan and they didn't know it. They were standing at the temple. The temple cannot make anybody Holy.

What did God say? 'Where is the house that you will build for me? (Isa. 66)! Where does God dwell today? Within us! That's what's important. That doesn't make us better than other people, not by a long shot. That condition does not remain unless you are faithful to God.

Verse 34: "Jesus answered them, 'Truly, truly I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a servant of sin.'"

  • sin is the transgression of the law
  • sin is lawlessness

Isn't it interesting, one of the greatest sins of mankind in every generation is assuming to tell God what to do. No one is going to tell God what to do under any circumstances. "…servant of sin…" You could also put that in there slave, because the Greek is 'doulous.'

Verse 35: "And the servant does not live in the house forever; but the Son lives forever. Therefore, if the Son shall set you free, you shall truly be free. I know that you are Abraham's seed… [doesn't matter who you are I; I know that] …but you are seeking to kill Me, because My words do not enter into your minds. I speak the things that I have seen from My Father, and you do the things that you have seen from your father" (vs 35-38).

Stop and think about this for a minute, because we're going to get into: Where does Satan like to come with human activities? He likes to come to the important places and important events, the temple of God! Here they were at the temple being taught of Jesus and He says: 'You do the things that you have seen from your father.'

Verse 39: "They answered and said to Him, 'Our father is Abraham.' Jesus said to them, 'If you were Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham.'"

Genesis 26:5: "Because Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws."

John 8:40: "But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has spoken the Truth to you, which I have heard from God; Abraham did not do this. You are doing the works of your father.' Then they said to Him, 'We have not been born of fornication. We have one Father, and that is God'" (vs 40-41). How many people would say that to us? Yes!

Verse 42: "Therefore, Jesus said to them, 'If God were your Father, you would love Me, because I proceeded forth and came from God. For I have not come of Myself, but He sent Me. Why don't you understand My speech? Because you cannot bear to hear My words" (vs 42-43).

Notice v 44; what a key verse in the Bible, right there at the temple. I can just tell you this. Every time I see a big layout of the St. Peter's Basilica with all of those idols, all of those things, and the pope standing there, I cannot help but think of v 44. But these were not in that condition at that time, just their own personal sins and their resistance against Christ.

Verse 44: "You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you desire to practice…" Yes, you want to do your own thing and not obey God. I find that all the time, every time I get a book that a Protestant has written, they talk about commandments, except the Sabbath. They talk about Christmas, Easter and New Years and nothing about the Holy Days of God. They desire to practice those things.

"…He was a murderer from the beginning, and has not stood in the Truth because there is no Truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he is speaking from his own self; for he is a liar, and the father of it" (v 44).

Right there at the temple, all those people around Him, the priests and the Levites were there listening to Him, waiting, trying to get something on Him. And this is what He said. You talk about really straightforward.

Verse 45: "And because I speak the Truth, you do not believe Me. Which one of you can convict Me of sin? But if I speak the Truth, why don't you believe Me? The one who is of God hears the words of God.…" (vs 45-47). That's the test! We have the words of God. Hear means listen to obey, listen to do.

"…For this reason you do not hear, because you are not of God" (v 47). Think about this for a minute. Descendants of Abraham, in the Jerusalem the city that God chose, in the very temple that God caused to be built, where He placed His name, and these are the descendants of the children of Israel—there may have been some from other tribes, but mostly Jews—and He tells them, "…you are not of God"; you are of your father the devil.'

Try that with any Christian denomination. Try that with the Jews, Orthodox to ultra-liberal. You're going to meet the same resistance that Jesus did.

Notice, rather than saying, 'If we're not of God, how do we become of God?' Jesus told them, 'You keep My words. You do the things that are pleasing to God.' What happens? Rather than admit the truth—see the modern media, learn from them.

Verse 48: "Then the Jews answered and said to Him, 'Are we not right in saying that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?'" How close is that to the unpardonable sin? Don't know, but it's getting close!

Verse 49: "Jesus answered, 'I do not have a demon. But I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me. Yet, I do not seek My own glory; there is One Who seeks and judges. Truly, truly I say to you, if anyone keeps My words, he shall not see death forever" (vs 49-51). Let's analyze that a bit: Didn't say they would not die, but that they would die but not be dead forever, because there's a resurrection. They didn't understand that.

Verse 52: "Then the Jews said to Him, 'Now we know that You have a demon. Abraham and the prophets died; yet, You say, "If anyone keeps My words, he shall not taste of death forever."'" It's not quite exactly what He said.

Verse 53: "'Are You greater than our father Abraham who died? And the prophets, who died? Who do You make Yourself to be?' Jesus answered, 'If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing. It is My Father Who glorifies Me, of Whom you say that He is your God…. [what a way to tell them] …Yet, you have not known Him; but I know Him. And if I say that I do not know Him, I shall be a liar, like you. But I know Him, and I keep His Word. Abraham your father was overjoyed to see My day; and he saw it, and rejoiced'" (vs 53-56

You see what happens when Satan closes the mind? There is no way to open it unless there's an admittance of wrongdoing and sin.

Verse 57: "Then the Jews said to Him, 'You are not even fifty years old, and You have seen Abraham?' Jesus said to them, 'Truly, truly I say to you, before Abraham was born, I AM'" (vs 57-58)—'ego eimi.' They should have know what that meant.

They wanted to stone him, but Jesus got away because His time wasn't yet.

We have all of this in the series, The Names of God. The sermon I AM THAT I AM. I'm going to do a special sermon on John 14:6, because that covers a lot of ground as well.

Scriptural References:

  • John 20:30-31
  • John 21:18-24
  • 1-John 1:1-10
  • 1-John 2:1
  • Exodus 6:2-3
  • Exodus 3:13-15
  • John 1:1-7
  • John 18:4-6
  • John 1:19-21
  • Deuteronomy 18:15-19
  • John 1:22-28
  • John 6:48
  • John 8:18-28
  • John 3:14-15
  • 1-Corinthians 15:12-18
  • John 3:15-16
  • John 8:28-39
  • Genesis 26:5
  • John 8:40-58

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • John 14, 17
  • Malachi 4
  • Matthew 2; 1
  • Luke 3
  • Isaiah 40
  • 1-John 3:22, 16
  • Isaiah 66

Also referenced:

Books:

  • The Obedience of a Christian Man by William Tyndale
  • The Names of God by Andrew Jukes

Booklet: A Tribute to William Tyndale
Sermon: I AM THAT I AM (Names of God #11)
Sermon Series/Transcript Book/CD: Names of God

FRC:lp
Transcribed: 5-21-16
Formatted: 5/23/16

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