Don't harden your heart, don't let it control you or your thoughts; trust in GOD

Fred R. Coulter—June 17, 2017

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Greetings, everyone! Welcome to Sabbath services!

I don't know about you but the news is filled with all kinds of doubts and fears and investigations, accusations, shooting, looting, ignoring free speech, and all that sort of thing.

What is happening? Some people say they're trying to have an internal coup to get rid of Trump! That may be.

Let's come here to the book of Ecclesiastes. Everyone who tries to do 'good' ends up with a problem. Some people you think are good, are not good. They're surprised that all these difficulties come around.

Ecclesiastes 3:16, Solomon says: "And again I saw under the sun the place of judgment…" Like in the courts, halls of Congress and the Office of the President—I think now we have the most lawful President we have had in decades—governors. And look at the trial going on with Bill Cosby, etc.

"…that wickedness was there; and in the place of righteousness, that wickedness was there" (v 16).

Look at all the religions and all they are doing. The biggest thing that they miss is not understanding human nature. Everybody thinks he's 'good.'

They did a survey asking college students, 'Are you a good person?' Yeah, I'm a good person. 'Have you lied?' Well, yeah. 'How long ago? Today?' Yeah. 'Is lying good?' No. 'Do you ever have thoughts of hatred?' Yes. Especially on college campuses, if they see someone who is a conservative, they're going to come after them.

So, here's what Solomon said, v 17: "I said in my heart, 'God shall judge the righteous and the wicked; for there is a time there for every purpose and for every work.' I said in my heart, 'Concerning the matter of the sons of men, may God reveal to them, that they might see, that they themselves are but beasts'" (s 17-18).

Let's come to Matt. 24 and let's see why it's difficult living in these days and why you come to a time, like it said in one of the minor prophets there, 'don't trust in a friend; don't trust in anyone.'

Yesterday afternoon after preparing for this message, I said, 'All right, I'm just going to channel surf.' Everything had to do with fighting, warring, robbing, stealing, adultery, corrupt politicians, demons and advertising for movies at the end of the world—yes, the end of the world is coming—they're right there.

Then I turned to another channel and it's arguments between politicians. Another channel was all about animals and all the animals are fighting, warring against each other, especially the hyenas, they are really vicious. If a wrong hyena comes into their clan, they'll attack it. This one hyena got caught. They chewed off his ear, one of his feet, left him nearly dead.

Then I turned to American Heroes channel, all about WWI, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam War, the war in Iraq. Turned to another channel, here's this big apartment tower burning in London, 27 stories. How did that happen, especially after all of the instances that they had of terrorism? Then I turned to news and they don't report what's going on in Germany and the provinces because the reporters don't go there and they don't report it all the things that are going on. Then we had the shooting at the Republican baseball practice.

So, this morning I get up and I check the news and those things are still going on. Then I saw the streamer below that said 'Trump and family go to Camp David' and they are there till Monday and they didn't take any press with them. This is what happens when everyone does what is right in their own eyes. Then I turned to Almost Got Away With It, then Forensic Files. Wow! This world is terrible!

Matt. 24:2-8 talks about all the things that will happen. These are the beginning of sorrows, and these come like cycles. So, I said, I wonder what it would be like to live in Jerusalem when the Roman war began, three and a half years, then all the slaughter and killing and everything that took place. Just like Jesus said they didn't leave 'one stone upon a stone.' Here's what they were doing then. They're going to do this again:

Matthew 24:9: "Then shall they deliver you up to affliction, and shall kill you; and you shall be hated by all nations for My name's sake."

That has started; the seeds have already been sown and they're doing that where? Anyone who names Jesus over in the Middle East are killed. They estimated that they've killed over a million of Iraqi Christians over the period of time.

Verse 11: "And many false prophets shall arise, and shall deceive many." I have some things about false prophecies and things like this in the e-mail.

Verse 12: "And because lawlessness shall be multiplied…"—notice it doesn't say increased, it says multiplied, and this is where we are. We have a media right now that is almost impossible for them to tell the truth.

Yesterday Dolores watched Trump's speech, which she said was a very good speech. She watched it on CNN just to check up and see if they would run the whole thing. They did, but what was the commentary after it? Nobody can tell the truth. No one is honest.

The result is: "…the love of many shall grow cold. But the one who endures to the end, that one shall be saved" (vs 12-13).

When you watch the Trinity Broadcasting System, I didn't for years. I didn't know we had it because I never channel surfed to find it. Everything is all goody-two-shoes and all smiles and love and everything's going to be good. What's going to happen, there is going to come the rapture and you'll be taken away. You don't have to worry.

Yet, they're the ones who are saying you don't have to keep the Law, you don't have to do all of this. They're the ones who started all of this. It shows we have some tough times to live through. Let's see a prophecy of today; this is how we feel:

Psalm 12:1: "Help, O LORD, for the Godly man ceases; for the faithful disappear from among the children of men. They speak falsehood each one with his neighbor; with flattering lips and a double heart they speak. The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips… [the day is coming] …and the tongue that speaks proud things, who have said, 'With our tongue we shall prevail…'" (vs 1-4). That sounds like extreme left in the media.

"…our lips are our own; who is lord over us?" (v 4). Perfect description of everyone doing what is right in their own eyes.

Verse 5: "'For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, I will now arise,' says the LORD.… [God is going to intervene and take care of it in His time] …'I will set him in safety from him who puffs at him.' The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times" (vs 5-6).

So what does this tell us? In times of all distress and all this nonsense going on, you keep your mind on the Word of God.

Verse 8: "The wicked walk on every side when vileness is exalted among the sons of men."

Let's see how the Bible has described what has happened to this nation and why are we the way that we are.

The other day on the news here in Los Angeles, the LGBT had a march. They had over 100,000 just in the close area of Los Angeles. How perverse is this nation becoming? That's just one city. I don't know what would happen if it were up in San Francisco.

This is happening in Jerusalem big time; also in Seaside. I didn't know but this is supposedly 'homosexual and perverts month.'

Let's come to Isa. 32 and let's understand as we're reading these things, let's think about America, the U.K., Europe and all the things that are going on there. I don't see any report of the Chinese having to fight off people wanting to get into China or into Russia. Maybe you'll get that enough in Europe that people will start wanting to go to Russia, who knows.

Isaiah 32:5: "The vile one shall no more be called liberal…" That sounds like it's written for today's politics.

"…nor the miser said to be bountiful. For the vile will speak folly, and his heart will work iniquity, to practice hypocrisy and to speak error against the LORD…" (vs 5-6). How profound are those words? They are happening!

"…to make the soul of the hungry empty, and he will take away the drink of the thirsty. Also the weapons of the vile are evil; he thinks of wicked ways to destroy the poor with lying words, even when the needy speaks right" (vs 6-7).

Isn't that what happened? There are now reports that students on college campuses, if they want to identify with President Trump and are conservative, they are virtually run out. So, we are at a point of emotional and political conflict, entrenchment of each side against the other.

Verse 8: "But the liberal thinks liberal things; and by liberal things he shall stand." We can add in there all.

In Isa. 43 again we have a description of this. We will see some of these prophecies are to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. That tells us what the Bible already shows that there was a division of the twelve tribes.

Isaiah 43:21: "This people that I formed for Myself; they shall declare My praise." That's what they're supposed to do. Some few are.

Verse 22: "Yet, you have not called upon Me, O Jacob…"—but a false Jesus. What is the emphasis in the Bible in our relationship with God? It's the Father and the Son.

You will notice that in the Christianity of this world, it's all Jesus, and that is a false Jesus. Even though God says that if the prophets of Baal, the sun-worshipers, would give the people God's Word He would honor it (Jer. 23). Some are doing a little nice picking and choosing of all the nice things that they agree with.

"…much less have you troubled yourself about Me, O Israel" (v 22). Isn't it interesting, every time a tragedy happens everybody gets nicey-nice and prays, even Nancy Pelosi says she prays. But the question is: to whom are you praying? The Bible teaches to pray to the Father. So, 'religion' does not necessarily equate to 'good.'

Verse 23: "You have not brought Me the lamb of your burnt offerings; nor have you honored Me with your sacrifices. I have not caused you to serve with a grain offering, nor wearied you with incense. You have bought Me no sweet cane with money, nor have you filled Me with the fat of your sacrifices; but you have made Me serve with your sins; you have wearied Me with your iniquities…. [lawlessness] …I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake, and will not remember your sins. Put Me in remembrance; let us plead together; declare yourself, that you may be justified. Your first father has sinned, and your teachers have transgressed against Me. And I will profane the princes of the sanctuary, and will give Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches" (vs 23-28).

Isaiah 42:22: "But this is a people robbed and spoiled…" That is true. You may have digital money in your bank account. You may have paper money in your wallet, along with credit cards, but do you have any real money? How else have we been robbed?

  • we've been robbed of the knowledge of the true God
  • we've been robbed of the knowledge of who we really are
  • we've been robbed of the knowledge that the Sabbath should be kept

"…all of them snared in holes…" (v 22).

I read that, I thought about this ad where here is this monetary baron up on his mountain top chalet. He has a big expensive house up there and he's standing up there watching down on the plain. Between him and the mountain that comes up to him, there's a valley, a big cliff. Here are all of these stupid investors with their heads in holes.

Then all of a sudden someone says something, either buy or sell, they all pull up their heads out and they start running toward the cliff. The baron at the top—I'll liken him to Satan—just looking down there with his binoculars seeing what's going on.

"…and they are hidden in prison houses; they are for a prey, and none delivers them; for a spoil, and none says, 'Give back.' Who among you will hear this? Who will hearken and hear for the time to come? Who gave Jacob for a spoil, and Israel to robbers? Did not the LORD, against Whom we have sinned?.… [that's why we have all the troubles that we do, because of sin] …For they would not walk in His ways, nor did they obey His Law. Therefore, He has poured upon him the fury of His anger, and the strength of battle. And it has set him on fire all around, yet, he did not know; and it burned him, yet, he did not lay it to heart" (vs 22-25).

Look at Britain and ask, 'What will it take for them to wake up?' Look at Europe, what a terrible situation that is. Look at America: we can be thankful there's Trump trying to straighten out some things, but will he succeed? I don't know!

So, here's what God is doing, not only to nations, not only to countries, but to individuals; no one is exempt. God has several levels of adjustment: areas of the nation and individuals. He looks and sees what's going. Here's how He operates. We've covered this before, but it's important for us to understand.

Jeremiah 18:1: "The Word, which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, 'Arise and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause you to hear My words.' Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he was working at his wheel. And the vessel that he made of clay was ruined in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the Word of the LORD came to me, saying, 'O house of Israel… [think about all the twelve tribes of Israel. Look at all the trouble in those nations today] …can I not do with you even as this potter?' says the LORD…." (vs 1-6).

What is it that they answer back? They answer back in Rom. 11, 'shall the clay say to the potter, what are you making?' That's exactly what people do today.

  • they won't listen to God
  • they won't take notice of His Word

"…'Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hands, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel…. [showing there is a collective choice, a collective judgment of the nation] …If at any time I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck it up and to pull it down, and to destroy it" (vs 6-7).

What has Trump said, and others have said, that he's here to save the nation from going over the cliff. Does he constitute the one man that seeks justice (Jer. 5:1)? Maybe! Could be!

  • How many people will respond behind him?
  • How much will the government change because of him?

If there's anyone whom you would not want to be in his place today, that would be Trump. For all of the naysayers, and I'm not pushing politics, I'm looking at it from a national point of view—for all the naysayers, think of where we would be if 'Hillary-Billary' were president. We'd be right in the midst of the chute down into the pit of hell!

Look at what they're doing in getting rid of the MS-13 gangs. There are some very sinister things going on by the former administration that they were planning to carry out. There's every reason to believe that the MS-13 was in on it. But they had gotten rid of over 500 MS-13 gang members already. Their motto is: kill and destroy. That's what they do.

This is how God corrects a nation: He lets evil people come; He lets evil practices multiply!

  • What are you going to do about it?
  • What's the government going to do?
  • How are the officials going to react?
  • How are the religious leaders going to react?

Verse 7: "If at any time I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck it up and to pull it down, and to destroy it; if that nation, against whom I have spoken, will turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do to them" (vs 7-8).

We see that in Bible in several different cases. Take all of this now and apply it to Solomon. You couldn't have started out with anything greater, better, more wealthy, more wisdom and more God-blessed than Solomon. It got so bad that God had to begin to send terrorists. Someone will say, 'God would send terrorists?' Would you rather have a bolt of lightning from God strike you? He uses human beings, giving them a chance to repent.

Verse 8: "If that nation, against whom I have spoken, will turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do to them."

Think about that. Look at the greatest crimes that we have in the nations of modern Israel. If those were stopped, or pulled way back, God would bring a blessing.
Verse 9: "And if at any time I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build it and to plant it; if it does evil in My sight, that it not obey My voice, then I will repent of the good with which I said I would do them good. Now, therefore, speak to the men of Judah, and to the people of Jerusalem, saying, 'Thus says the LORD, "Behold, I am forming evil against you, and devising a plan against you. Return now, each one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good"'" (vs 9-11).

That's what should be preached from every pulpit in America and in Britain. Just think of secularized France. The Netherlands is almost under the yoke of Sharia Law now. Belgium seeking to lead the whole world can't even find the 10,000 terrorists that live there.

If they would turn to God, then things would start shifting the other way. But here's what they say, v 12: "And they said, 'There is no hope; but we will walk after our own ways, and we will each one do according to the stubbornness of his evil heart.'"

Think about that in relationship to in all of these countries there is the entrenched liberals, socialists, communists, atheists, sexual perversion way high. All the other things that go along with that, too. Destruction of life of unborn, and so forth. All of that! Think about all of the drugs.

All of those Trump has said he wants to eliminate or reduce it; let's hope that he does!

Verse 13: "Therefore, thus says the LORD, 'Ask now among the nations; who has heard such things? The virgin of Israel has done a very horrible thing. Does the snow of Lebanon fail from the rock of the field? Or shall the cold waters that come from another place cease to flow? Because My people have forgotten Me, they have burned incense to vanity, and they have caused themselves to stumble in their ways from the ancient paths, to walk in by-paths, not on the highway… [the highway of God's way] …to make their land desolate and a perpetual hissing. Everyone who passes by shall be astonished, and will shake his head. I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy; I will show them My back, and not My face, in the day of their calamity" (vs 13-17).

Of course, they didn't like that message!

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Think about this for a minute as to why it's so difficult for many people who are religious, profess being Christian, who understand what's going on, when they are told that everything in the Old Testament has been fulfilled and you don't need to worry about it.

They don't know who they are or where they have come from. The people from the different nations know where they have come from, but the Anglo-Saxons, the ones who are of the ten tribes of Israel don't know who they are. I think here in American we have parts of all twelve tribes here, without a doubt.

Jeremiah 11:3: "'And say to them, 'Thus says the LORD God of Israel, "Cursed is the man who does not obey the words of this covenant."'"

Think about this in relationship to the New Testament. People are going to say, 'That's the Old Covenant and we don't have to do anything with it.' In every covenant that God has there are laws and commandments and they're the same ones.

Think what it would be if they understood what we're going to read here, and how then they would have an opportunity to see what they need to do. But they're mystified, because when you don't obey, there is a spiritual blindness that is automatic.

Verse 3—God says: "And say to them, 'Thus says the LORD God of Israel, "Cursed is the man who does not obey the words of this covenant, which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, 'Obey My voice and do according to all that I command you; so you shall be My people, and I will be your God'; so that I may fulfill the oath which I have sworn to your fathers, to give them 'a land flowing with milk and honey,' as it is this day."' Then I answered and said, 'Amen, O LORD'" (vs 3-5).

Isn't that true? Wouldn't that be good if people would do that? Think about the land flowing with milk and honey: America, Europe, Britain.

Sidebar: Used to be South Africa. You better pray for all the brethren down there because they are going to Zimbabwe South Africa. What is that? Kill all the whites and then the land falls into famine because no one knows how to do anything. South Africa was once one of the richest nations in the world. The satanic elite of this world are the ones who convinced Ronald Reagan to impose embargoes against them to bring in a black government.

When the Dutch and the English first got there, the blacks weren't living there. So, you talk about a fulfillment because you won't obey God. The stranger is going to rise up above you very high and you will be brought very low!

On that scale very high and very low, I would say South Africa's up to about 8. We're at about 5-1/2. Britain is close to 7. The other countries in Europe are pretty close to 7, too; all because the people won't obey God.

Verse 6: "Then the LORD said to me, 'Declare all the words in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem, saying, "Hear the words of this covenant, and do them."'"

Wasn't this covenant based on the Ten Commandments? Yes, indeed! I defy any person anywhere to tell me why those commandments are not good. God gave them for a great purpose. We have exalted human opinion, human traditions, human and satanic religions, and have adopted evil in place of good.

That's why we're told there in Matt. 24, 'the one who endures to the end—because of all the lawlessness—shall be saved.' We need to understand what's going on so that we don't get despaired.

Verse 7: "For I earnestly forewarned your fathers in the day I brought them up out of the land of Egypt, even to this day, rising early and warning persistently, saying, 'Obey My voice.'"

You look at the examples of how quickly God forgives upon real repentance. Just think what would happen if there would be a mass of repentance by people starting in the Christian churches. In the book we put out, Lord, What Should I Do? I've got a chapter devoted to ministers:

  • What should they do?
  • How should they live their lives?
  • What should they preach to the people?
  • Obey My voice!
  • Can you have love with disobedience?
  • What would it be like?

This is what it's like; Husband and wife: Husband says, 'I love you. You're the most beautiful woman in the world. I adore you.' The wife believes every world. He conducts himself as if it's true when he's home, but he's out actually committing adultery. Or the wife does the same thing.

  • Is there any love there? No!
  • Can there be any love there? No!

So, it's impossible, all of these religionists talking about love. Yes, people can make themselves behave in a nice manner when they're encouraged to do so. But is it society changing in what they're preaching? No!

  • How much good has Joel Osteen done?
  • How much has he changed the world?
  • He is a false prophet preaching good platitudes of humanism, which is pure satanism, using and misusing the Scriptures!
  • Does Satan quote Scripture? Yes, he even quoted it to Jesus!

Verse 8: "Yet, they did not obey nor bow down their ear, but walked each one in the imagination of his evil heart.…'"

Jeremiah 17:9: "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?"

Jeremiah 10:23: "O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man who walks to direct his steps."

Think about the youth growing up today. They're taught nothing but emotion, feel goodism and sex. That's about the basics of their education today. Think how terrible and miserable their lives are. So terrible and so miserable they don't want anyone to tell them what they're doing is wrong.

So because they do that, God continues, Jeremiah 11:8: "…'So, I will bring on them all the words of this covenant, which I commanded them to do; but they did not do them.' And the LORD said to me, 'A conspiracy is found among the men of Judah, and among the people of Jerusalem'" (vs 8-9).

Also, in every nation on earth there is a conspiracy against the nation to bring in a satanic one-world governmental order and a one-world religion. They will eventually get there.

Verse 10: "They have turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, who refused to hear My words. And they went after other gods to serve them. The house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken My covenant which I made with their fathers." Yet, God still gave them the land because of the promise to Abraham!

We're not here because we're great people. We're not here because we're so smart. We are here because God's promise is sure that He told Abraham He would give them the land and it was conditioned upon Abraham's obedience and not on the obedience of the people. But He expects them, once He gives it to them and gives them His Word, to obey. Just think of what it would be.

Verse 11: "Thus says the LORD, 'Behold, I will bring evil on them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry to Me, I will not hear them.'"

How close are we to that point? I don't know! But I tell you what, I'm thankful that we're not living in France, that we're not living in Germany. California is bad enough. Think of that!

Look at all the prayers that were offered up after the shooting at the baseball practice this week. Everybody prayed. Dolores even mentioned she heard that some of the congressmen have Bible studies. I wonder what they study.

Verse 12: "Then shall the cities of Judah and the people of Jerusalem go and cry to the gods to whom they offer incense. But they shall not save them at all in the time of their trouble. For according to the number of your cities are your gods, O Judah. And according to the number of the streets of Jerusalem you have set up altars to that shameful thing, altars to burn incense to Baal. And you… [Jeremiah] …do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them. For I will not hear them when they call to Me in the time of their distress. What has My beloved to do in My house, since she has committed lewdness with many? And the Holy flesh has passed from you. When you do evil, then you rejoice. The LORD called your name, a green olive tree, fair, with fine fruit. With the sound of a great storm He has set fire to it, and its branches are worthless. For the LORD of hosts who planted you has spoken evil against you, for the evil of the house of Israel and of the house of Judah, which they have done to themselves to provoke Me to anger by offering incense to Baal.'" (vs 12-17). Note: read all of Isa. 59.

We need some encouragement here and Psa. 37 is the one. Here's how you endure. Here is how you can be encouraged even though things are falling apart many places around you.

It's interesting, someone mentioned, I think it was Newt Gingrich, that there is an emotional upheaval in the thinking of many people. I know it probably has affected us. When you see these things it affects you, it affects me. But we have to do one thing:

Psalm 37:1: "[#1]Do not fret yourself because of evildoers…" Do not get emotionally involved to the point that it affects your relationship with God or with other people. That's a hard thing to do.

"…and do not be envious against the workers of iniquity, for they shall soon be cut down like the grass; and wither as the green herb. Trust in the LORD, and do good…" (vs 1-3). That's what God wants us to do.

Make sure that trust is your believing Him, loving Him. Ask Him to help you understand these things from His perspective of what's going on and whatever may be in your particular life. These things affect us and come in on us so we need to be prepared on how to handle it. Otherwise, we'll get emotionally stressed out and spiritually stressed out and it will be difficult. "Trust in the LORD…"

Verse 4: Delight yourself in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart." What is the greatest desire that we should have in our heart? To attain to the Kingdom of God! God said, 'Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom (Luke 12).

Think about how, when these things come up, what are we going to do to correct the problem? We'll have the power to correct the problem. Won't that be nice? Think about the blessing that God has given us. He's going to take care of it in the long run.

Sidebar: Just be careful; when things go well, don't run out and do something stupid. Like this one woman, she came home to her apartment and it was being robbed. The robber fled, but she did something stupid. She chased after him and he beat her up. I think one of the Proverbs says if there's a dogfight, don't get your hands in the middle of it. Notice what you're to do:

  • don't be fretful, that's an emotional reaction
  • don't get all worked up because of evildoers

They shall soon be cut down like grass.

  • don't fret
  • trust in the Lord
  • do good

Verse 4: "Delight yourself in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way unto the LORD…" (vs 4-5). This is how we endure in these times of trouble! You can't avoid it.

Here you're watching the news on something and all of a sudden an alert comes in: fire takes place, a plane crashed, people are killed, gunned down, whatever. You can get involved in that. Those are horrible and terrible things. I'm not saying harden your heart, but don't let it control you or your thoughts.

"…trust also in Him, and He will bring it to pass. And He shall bring forth your righteousness like the light, and your judgment like the noonday. Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him…" (vs 5-7).

If there's something you need to do, go do that take, take care of it. If there's something you need to change, do that. That's what God would want you to do.

Verse 7: "Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him; [#2]do not fret yourself because of him who prospers in his way, because of him who carries out wicked schemes."

Think of all of the Hollywood people. I think that says it right there. Look at how quickly they get into trouble. Think of all of the rock leaders in the music and entertainment industry. What happens to them? Most of them die of a drug overdose.

Look at the greatest one that there was: Michael Jackson. Look at how his pitiful life ended. He was worth $70-million, lived in a fantastic mansion, but he overdosed and died. Who is better off?

  • Do you want to trust in the Lord and wait for Him?
  • Do you want to look to God to provide?

Things may not necessarily be a blessing unless they come from God. They can be a curse. You could go on all day, all of the entertainers who die early.

Verse 8: "Cease from anger…" What does the New Testament say? 'Don't let the sun go down on your wrath.' Why does it say that? Because if you have anger and all of this stuff going on it's very hard to do! Sometimes it's so intense that, yes, it does carry over.

"…and forsake wrath; [#3]do not fret yourself, it leads only to evil, for evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth" (vs 8-9). That's quite a fantastic blessing! He says it many times through here.

Verse 10: "It is but a little while, and the wicked shall be no more…" When this Psalm was written, it's been thousands of years, but to God that's a little while.

"…yea, you shall diligently consider his place, but he shall not be there. But the meek shall inherit the earth and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace" (vs 10-11).

We are going to bring that peace. Where does that come from? Like Paul said in the opening of every epistle: Grace and peace from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ! That's the blessing for the whole epistle. Too many times we don't read it, but that's what's intended to do.

Sometimes it's difficult to have peace with people who don't want to have peace. Peace is a two-way thing. You're at peace with God and He's at peace with you. If you're at war with God, how can He be at peace with you? Same way in human relations; when there is no peace, sometimes you just have to separate. Nothing you can do.

Verse 12: "The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes against him with his teeth. The LORD laughs at him, for He sees that his day is coming. The wicked have drawn out the sword, and have bent their bow, to cast down the poor and needy, to kill those who walk uprightly…. [Sound a little bit like ISIS terrorists?] …Their sword shall enter into their own heart, and their bows shall be broken" (vs 12-15).

  • Are they going to get rid of terrorism? I doubt it!
  • How many ISIS members are they going to kill? Probably tens of thousands of them!

But there is no peace unless it comes from God!

The world will attain an artificial peace somewhere down the road here. Everyone is going to think, 'miracles of miracles, we have peace, finally men have done it.' But when they say that, sudden destruction comes (1-Thes. 5). So you can put a cap on human nature for a while, but God want it changed with His Holy Spirit.

Verse 18: "The LORD knows the days of the upright, and their inheritance shall be forever. They shall not be ashamed in the time of evil, and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied" (vs 18-19).

God somehow will provide. However, we have to be like the ant and make some provisions, too.

Verse 20: "But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD shall be like the beauty of pastures—they are consumed, and like smoke they vanish."

Verse 22: "For those blessed of Him shall inherit the earth; and those cursed of Him shall be cut off. The steps of a good man are made firm by the LORD, and He delights in his way" (vs 22-23).

Yes, we can do the things that please God (1-John 3).

Here's what we do, v 27: "Depart from evil and do good, and live forevermore. For the LORD loves justice and does not forsake His saints; they are preserved forever, but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the earth and dwell in it forever" (vs 27-29).

What we're going to do, we're going to read sections of 1-Peter, starting from the end and then going to the first chapter. Always remember this: and if you have a terrible trial or difficulty upon you, or you have a particular difficulty you're fighting and warring against, use 1-Peter 5 in opening of your prayer and apply it to yourself and to God!

1-Peter 5:7: "Casting all your cares upon Him, because He cares for you." When you're going through a trial, sometimes you wonder if God loves you, if He cares for you. Remember this: the promise that all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose! Somehow you're going to learn something from this, which is going to be good.

Here's what we need to do, v 8: "Be sober! Be vigilant! For your adversary the devil is prowling about as a roaring lion, seeking anyone he may devour."

Of course, we know, tie in that Eph. 6: we don't war against flesh and blood, but against wicked spirits in high places. That's what you see the war going on back in Washington, D.C., right now. The wicked in high places do not want to be removed. So there's a battle there and it's a big battle.

Here's how we resist, v 9: "Whom resist, steadfast in the faith…" Just like we saw back there.

  • let the Law of God be in your heart and mind
  • trust in Him
  • trust in His Word
  • trust in His promises
  • keep your prayers to Him
  • don't be carried away with all of these things

Verse 9: "Whom resist, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are being fulfilled among your brethren who are in the world."

This was written sometime just before the beginning of the Roman war against Jerusalem. There's always a prelude of confusion, difficulties, wickedness that lead up to it.

Verse 10: "Now, may the God of all grace, Who has called us unto His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little while, Himself perfect you… [that's the whole purpose of all of this, to be perfected] …establish, strengthen, and settle you…. [only God can do that.] …To Him be the glory and the power into the ages of eternity. Amen" (vs 10-11).

1-Peter 4:1: "Consequently, since Christ has suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind because the one who has suffered in the flesh has finished living in sin."

We're to arm ourselves with the same mind that Jesus had. How does that come? By the Spirit of God!

Philippians 2:5: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus."

  • think about what He gave up
  • think about what He went through

He didn't just suffer for Himself. He suffered for all the sins and all the problems of all mankind being heaped upon Him because He created them. So therefore, only His death could be a just sacrifice to forgive their sins.

Notice how all of these things help us keep our minds on what God wants us to think and to do and to trust in Him. If you take the first part of this and then compare with the last part that we read first, I've had people say, 'The way I read a book, I read the conclusion first.' This is what we've done today.

1-Peter 1:1: "Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the elect strangers scattered in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia; who have been chosen according to the predetermined knowledge of God the Father…" (vs 1-2).

If you get real down on yourself, or real down because of the circumstances around you, remember you have been chosen by God. Yes, little ole me and little ole you, and whoever, have been chosen by God Himself.

Remember how we are called! Jesus said the Father draws. God the Father is the One Who is involved in our lives. This is not just a religion or a church where we try and be good. We ought to do that but it's greater than that because God the Father Himself is involved in our lives.

"…by sanctification through the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied to you" (v 2).

Where did we start? Living in a world where lawlessness is multiplied. Here, let God intervene and multiply His grace and peace to you.

Verse 3: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who, according to His abundant mercy, has begotten us again…" Remember the Scriptures we've covered about the Spirit of God, coming from Christ, coming from the Father, the begettal for eternal life, and His seed remains in us, so that we are not going to be living in sin, where we can repent and come back to God.

"…unto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (v 3).

Today there are quite a few people on some of these channels trying to figure out where was Jesus, was He really a man. I saw one the other day, 'No, He married Mary Magdalene and had children and their bones were sent back to Jerusalem,' so they're looking for the sarcophagus where the bones were. One man who was supposedly a professor in the Worldwide Church of God, supposedly one who believed, is helping look for the bones of Jesus.

The truth is they never found the body. Don't you think they looked and looked? I wonder how many people died while they were trying to find the body of Jesus? If they would have found it, they would have displayed it, to say, 'See, this is a fraud and a fake.' They never found it!

Then there's another one that they have. They have the Nag Hammadi gospels. You ever heard of that? The gospel of Peter, the gospel of Barnabas, the gospel of Mary Magdalene, and how Jesus kissed Mary Magdalene, very fondly. He must have married her.

Sidebar: Why could not Jesus marry Mary Magdalene? Because He was already married to Israel! Could never have happened. In order to release the covenant with Israel, He died. That's what Rom. 7 is all about.

Verse 4: "Unto an inheritance incorruptible…" Read about what New Jerusalem is going to look like and then stop and think—we're going to live there. What is that going to be?

"…and undefiled and unfading, reserved in heaven for us… [Christ is going to bring it] …who are being safeguarded by the power of God through faith…" (v 5).

That's why we need to trust in God, pray to God, draw close to Him in this time of troubles and difficulties. Remember, we are told to always prayer and never give up. So, think about this when you pray:

  • Do you need God's blessing today? Yes!
  • Did you need it yesterday? Yes!
  • Will you need it tomorrow? Yes!

Praying for that every day is needful. Praying for those who need help, physically, mentally and spiritually. Do they need help every day? Yes, they do! Pray for them.

  • What happened at the temple every morning and evening? The same sacrifice of the burnt offering of the lamb!
  • Was that needful? Yes, indeed!

That also shows us it is needful for us to dedicate ourselves to God every day. This is fantastic here!

"…for salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time" (v 5).

The resurrection is going to be the greatest thing that has ever happened in the world for the human race. What's it going to be like? I wonder what the last thought of some people has been? All of a sudden they're resurrected.

If they've been converted, they're resurrected to eternal life, and your angel will be there to carry you up to the Sea of Glass. We'll have a new language. We'll have a new body, all spirit. I wonder about the conversation going on with the angel going up? I wonder how it's going to be?

  • Does the resurrection start in the area of New Zealand and go around the world?
  • Is it going to take place close to sunrise, or shortly after?
  • Will those in the world see this happening?

That's going to be a fantastic thing. All of that is here. Notice all the positive things he did through 1-Peter 1:1-5.

Then he comes with v 6: "In this you yourselves greatly rejoice; though for the present, if it is necessary,you are in distress for a little while by various trials; in order that the proving of your faith, which is much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is being tested by fire, may be found unto praise and honor and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ" (vs 6-7). That's what it's all about. That's what we need to look to.

After he said, what I've just told you is so important that even the prophets of old didn't know that.

Verse 13: "For this reason, be prepared in your minds…" Because everything comes from your thoughts and your emotions, from your mind and from your heart. This is the only way you can have watershed, to keep from being consumed in some of these things, especially when the trial is protracted and never seems to end. This is what is important.

Some people may say, 'You don't care. You're not concerned.' No! It just is you have to stay in this spiritual condition in order to bring about, through God's help, a resolution of the problem.

"…be self-controlled…" (v 13). I know it's difficult sometimes for self-control, when it's really a bad trial and you lose it. I've lost it.

"…and be fully hoping in the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not conform yourselves to the former lusts, as you did in your ignorance. But according as He Who has called you is Holy, you yourselves also be Holy in all your conduct; for it is written, 'You be Holy because I am Holy.' And if you call upon the Father, Who judges according to each man's work without respect of persons, pass the time of your life's journey in the fear of God; knowing that you were not redeemed by corruptible things, by silver or gold, from your futile way of living, inherited by tradition from your forefathers; but by the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot" (vs 13-19).

This should give us some encouragement in the difficulties that we're seeing and going on, and help us in our lives to—when and if the trials come—to know they're the testing of our faith!

Scriptural References:

  • Ecclesiastes 3:16-18
  • Matthew 24: 9, 11-13
  • Psalm 12:1-6, 8
  • Isaiah 32: 5-8
  • Isaiah 43:21-28
  • Isaiah 42:22-25
  • Jeremiah 18:1-17
  • Jeremiah 11:3-8
  • Jeremiah 17:9
  • Jeremiah 10:23
  • Jeremiah 11:8-17
  • Psalm 37:1-15, 18-20, 22-23, 27-29
  • 1-Peter 5:7-11
  • 1-Peter 4:1
  • Philippians 2:5
  • 1-Peter 1:1-7, 13-19

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Matthew 24:2-8
  • Jeremiah 23
  • Romans 11
  • Jeremiah 5:1; 10:23
  • Isaiah 59
  • Luke 12
  • 1-Thessalonians 5
  • 1-John 3
  • Ephesians 6
  • Romans 7

Also referenced: Book: Lord, What Should I Do? By Fred R. Coulter

FRC:lp
Transcribed: 6-26-17
Formatted: bo—7-7-17

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