Revelation Series #14
The Hurricane Against God's People
Fred R. Coulter—September 12, 1992

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I have a letter I want to use as part of an introduction for the sermon that I'm going to cover today, The Hurricane Against God's People, seeing as how all the natural disasters we're going through, there is a parallel there. I have a message where a man claims that he is the successor to Herbert W. Armstrong who was Elijah and that he is Elisha, and if you don't believe that Herbert Armstrong is your 'spiritual father' and that Herbert Armstrong himself was a 'type of God the Father,' you won't be in the Kingdom of God. That's part of the assault that is against the Church. Here's another part of the assault that is against the Church:

Dear Fred, It's been some time since being in touch. We do receive your tapes regularly and appreciate listening to them, even though we haven't changed our minds on the 15th Passover and Sivan 6 Pentecost.

I called him yesterday and said, the book—The Christian Passover—when you read it you will see that the 14th Passover is what it should be. We cover things in there very, very thoroughly.

Other material has been quite helpful and do wish to continue receiving the tapes. I am enclosing a Bill Dankenbring's latest Pentecost article. I still receive his Prophecy Flash…

I had the two gentlemen from England call, and both of them said, 'yes, by all means, send the sermon tapes' and yes, they just got through the Passover thing there and that was a most helpful thing for them and they asked if they could have permission to make copies and send them around. I said, 'Do whatever you need to do.' They're troubled with Gerald Flurry who was the first one I mentioned, and Bill Dankenbring over there and others. So, it's a hurricane against the Church and there's no place you're going to hide. You try and hide and the next thing that's going to happen is a cassette/CD/DVD is going to come through the window and hit you. That's almost the way it's happening now.

…but have had no other contact with him for many months as he got crosswise with Phyllis and me and published many untruths about us.

This thing of disfellowshipping people and putting out nasty letters against people, that seems to be also part of it, so that's going on.

He's following right in HWA's style and seems to have thought our little group would be his blind-followers and collect tithes from us, among the other dubious moves he made. We have some who have deserted and are no longer meeting with us, and there are some who have moved to another state and have totally rejected Jesus and the New Testament—apparently have taken up with Judaism.

There's also that problem, people leaving the Church and going out and taking up with Judaism.

They've convinced some others to go ahead with them and they sent some articles of utter confusion to our people, have put doubts in the minds of a few. Even though it's hard to see good friends desert God, we know that it's a continual sifting and stirring process that is taking place. Another fine family was let off by a New Age Protestant man.

You see the things we're dealing with? Problems within the general Church of God, all the different Churches of God; problems of attacks from Judaism; problems with attacks from New Ageism and all this sort of thing. You never thought it would be like that—would you?

You look back many years ago and everything was going good in the Church and marching along arm-in-arm and step-in-step and everything was supposed to be good and righteous and all this sort of thing. Little did we know that a lot of the problems were stirring just below the surface. We're right in the middle of it, and, in a way, we can help a lot of people, and that's the whole intent here. I don't want to get up and bang Gerald Flurry on the head and take the same position he does toward other people—nor Bill Dankenbring, nor Dave Frazier, nor anyone. They're going to have to stand or fall before God on their own and they're going to have to preach the Truth of God and love of God, or they're going to be accountable to God—that's just the way it's going to be.

So, here's another family here, a New Age Protestant man, whom he had worked for, and now the whole family has rejected religion entirely. Everyone wonders, 'How is my faith going to be tested?' Brethren, it's happening right now to everybody, everywhere!

On the positive side, most others are growing strong in faith and enthusiasm. Hope everything is doing well up there. We had an extremely busy summer here. Best of everything to you and your family and may we all be ready when Christ comes for His Church.

That's really a good statement: may we all be ready!

Well, I would liken this then to the hurricane. Look what's happening. Look what happened in Florida during a hurricane: The winds hit and you see some of those pictures, it leveled everything; tore down buildings, ripped off roofs, flooded out and wiped away so many things. Then it went on over and got Louisiana, and a huge hurricane went right toward the Hawaiian islands and all of a sudden it went a little south and then turned directly north and went in between that little island and the island of Kauai, right where we kept the Feast of Tabernacles in 1972. That beach was literally wiped out! Winds of 160 mph; rain coming down just unbelievable!

I got to thinking—doctrinally and spiritually—we're kind of like in a hurricane, and we're kind of like those people, we have to 'batten down the hatches' and go to some place of safety. That place of safety is the Truth of God! The doctrines are coming just like the waves, the rain and the wind. There are some people out there who are standing in the middle of the storm and don't even know that they are in the middle of a storm! Let's hope we have enough good sense to flee to the Word of God and keep it right on Christ.

Let's see how Jesus talked about that very thing. It's amazing when we have these increasing natural disasters going on, that we also have all of this doctrinal trouble against the Church, just comes pounding right in. We must be in the 'beginning of 'sorrows.' We must be somewhere along there. That doesn't tell us how long the 'beginning of sorrows' are.

Matthew 7:26: "And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not practice them shall be compared to a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand; and the rain came down, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell, and great was the fall of it" (vs 26-27).

That's what they're finding in Florida and Louisiana, all the cheapo contractors coming around with their little staple guns, throwing up a quick, clap-trap house. When the wind comes, guess what? All the staples come out, the roof comes off, the whole house collapses! So, the wind is going to blow and we're right now in a hurricane against the Church!

All those people were sitting there smugly and nicely in Worldwide Church of God; remember when I said they're going to change the doctrines. They did! They've taken the second step to accepting the trinity. Remember, the first step was the Holy Spirit is Divine! The next step has been that the doctrine of the trinity is not pagan. That's what they're officially preaching. What happened to Alexander Hislop and The Two Babylons? The third step is that the Holy Spirit is a Divine being, but not a person. What's going to be the fourth step? Brethren, we have a brand new discovery, the Holy Spirit is a person! So, I've got so many things to cover with the false doctrine coming out. It is a hurricane in trying to get these things out.

People are sitting there right in the eye of the storm and in the eye of the storm is calm—isn't it? You feel secure, because in the eye of the storm there is no wind, there is the sun and all of the periphery around you looks like they are getting it, until the eye of the storm passes, and then they're going to be clobbered! They don't know what is happening to them; it is going so fast.

Delores has mentioned several times, 'Why don't we just forget about WCG and HWA; just forget it.' Brethren, we can't because too many people are going back and resurrecting it in such a way that it can't be avoided. I would like to, but there are too many people out there who really need help and who really need the Truth, and their lives are too much like this house built on the sand. The rains will come and the flood will come and the winds will blow:

"…and beat upon the house…" (v 27). If you liken a house to a church or an individual—however you want to do it—the house is the place where you live, so it's your life.

"…and it fell, and great was the fall of it" (v 27). That's happening! That is literally happening!

Those who are wise and those who are smart, v 24: "Therefore, everyone who hears these words of Mine and practices them, I will compare him to a wise man, who built his house upon the Rock." Who is that Rock? Jesus Christ! Yes, it is! All through the Psalms, 'the Lord is my Rock.' 1-Cor. 10:4: 'That Rock that followed them was Christ.' You have to build it on Christ.

The hurricane is going to come! The trial is on us now! It's not a matter of when the trial is; it is now! I think it's interesting that these great assaults are taking place at the same time that all of these natural catastrophes and disasters are happening, which, if you go back and rehearse the history of the Church from 62A.D. on from the time when the Apostle James, the brother of the Lord, was martyred:

  • they had natural catastrophes
  • they had war
  • they had disasters
  • they had famine

What was that? That was the time the Church was stressed with trials over faith and doctrine! So, we have the same thing today!

Verse 25: "And the rain came down… [exactly the same experience] …and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; but it did not fall, for it was founded upon the rock."

How do most people really survive these difficulties? Well, over in Hawaii in this one hotel, when they built it they made them build a 'storm center,' which would be able to resist winds up to 200 mph. That tells you that the engineers might have known something about what would happen. So, here comes a storm of 165 mph and those are going to be the people who survive. The foolish ones are the ones standing on the beach, and the 30-foot wave that they were admiring came in twice as fast as they figured and they couldn't get away from it, and BANG!

We would all prefer, I would prefer, that we could have everything nice and easy and smooth, delightful and loving with no trials. But even Jesus didn't have it that way.

James 3 is likened very much into what our lives are like. We have to understand this in relationship to all these ministers running around doing all this preaching. I tell you what—whoever the minister is—if his ministry is not founded on Jesus Christ, you need to ask yourself: What on earth am I doing?

If you've founded it on Herbert Armstrong, he's a fallible man. I wish him no ill. I wish him in the Kingdom of God. But on the other hand, I understand his mistakes. I have my faults and my mistakes, and I just hope I don't get them out in such a way that they become so major that it's a disaster. Unfortunately, that's what happened with him. As I said before, I hope that in his quiet hours, when he was nearing the end of his life—which I'm sure he did—he repented to God so he can be in the Kingdom of God. But, I'm not going to stand up and preach the things that he preached. I'll preach the Truth! If he preached the Truth, I'll preach what the Truth is. That's the way it should be with every minister.

Here's exactly what it is in James 3:1, it talks about teachers: "My brethren, do not many of you become teachers, knowing that we will receive more severe judgment… [That is literally and absolutely true!] …because we frequently offend, every one of us. If anyone does not offend in what he says… [this is a mild form of sin, but it's still sin nevertheless] …this one is a perfect man andis able also to hold in check the whole body. Remember, we put bits into horses' mouths in order that they may obey us, and we direct their entire bodies. Consider also that ships, being so large, and being driven by strong winds, are turned about by a very small rudder, wherever the will of the one who is steering may decide. In the same way also, the tongue is a little member, but it boasts great things. See how large a forest is set ablaze... [it sure does] …by a little fire; and the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness…." (vs 1-6).

This is in relationship to whom? Not in relationship to brethren gossiping about one another! This is in relationship to those who are teaching, in relationship to those who are speaking to other people, and how many difficulties there are because of the unbridled tongue, because of wanting to set oneself up as a great teacher and minister.

One of them I've nicknamed 'a pusher/puller.' He pushes Herbert up to deify him and then pulls himself up a little higher. Do you think that's going to get anyone into the Kingdom of God? No way! Those people who follow him are going to be spiritually set on fire. That's what causes a lot of people to give up on God and give up on the Word of God, give up on the Bible, because there are so many of these people going around there.

Remember what Jesus said, Matt. 24—the first thing He said: 'Many will come in My name saying I am the Christ'—and many shall follow them. Look at how many people ran off to follow Ross Perot. I mean, think of it! Then he just dumped them when it didn't suit him. Let alone trying to follow God.

Verse 6: "And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. So has the tongue been set among our members—the one memberthat defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of life, and is set on fire by Gehenna. Now then, every species of animals and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But the tongue no human being is able to tame; it is an unrestrainable evil, full of death-dealing poison. With it we bless God the Father, and with it we ourselves curse people who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth comes out blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so!" (vs 6-10).

Brethren, that's true. Not only in the way what may be gossip that people can do, but also it ought not be with all these ministers running around proclaiming that they're the closest thing to Jesus Christ since someone walked the earth. It just doesn't work that way.

I sure hope that we can get through with going through 'the milk' again. We have to take time out and take some basic foundations here. It's just like with a storm. What happens when a storm goes through and destroys everything you have? You've got to get back to the basics—right? Yes, you do! You have to get food, clothing and shelter because it's all gone! There are a lot of people out there spiritually that have gone through the 'hurricane' that need help spiritually speaking; just like the people in the hurricane needed help for food, clothing and shelter.

Ephesians 4:14: "So that we no longer be children, tossed and carried about with every wind of doctrine by the sleight of men in cunning craftiness, with a view to the systematizing of the error."

I can tell you that we can stand up there and condemn all day long all the things that the Protestants and the Catholics have done which are contrary to the Word of God, and that's true; but also, there are a lot of people going out there now who are, by the slight and cunning of men, taking the name of Herbert Armstrong to use it as their authority to build their church and build their following. It's creating a lot of difficulties in a lot of people's lives. We need to be careful that we are not carried about with 'every wind of doctrine.'

Let's come right back to the first words of Christ—right back to the foundation—because this is the only place that we are going to find the food, the clothing and the shelter, and that is from Jesus Christ! We'll look at this just a little bit differently than we have in the past, though we've gone over these Scriptures quite a few times.

Matthew 5:17: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until the heaven and the earth shall pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no way pass from the Law until everything has been fulfilled" (vs 17-18).

I know a man who recently just got 'martinized,' because he thinks that the Law and the Prophets have been done away. Now we graduate to the point where we have the commandments in our heart and mind and we don't have to keep anything.

  • don't need to keep the Sabbath
  • don't need to worry about clean and unclean meats
  • don't need to worry about the Holy Days
  • don't need to tithe or give any money

This happened to a man who was in the Church for 20 years!

  • just because you're in the Church
  • just because you know brethren
  • just because you know a minister

it can happen! That's why we have to go back to the foundation in the time of these hurricanes as it were so we know what we need to do.

Jesus says, v 17: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill…. [very, very basic, but it needs to be said and repeated] …For truly I say to you, until the heaven and the earth shall pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no way pass from the Law until everything has been fulfilled" (vs (17-18). As we've said before, heaven and earth is still here. The world is still here. The plan of God has not been fulfilled, and won't be until you go clean off the chart of Rev. 22—just won't be!

Let's see how the laws and commandments of God are to be kept. After He said, v 20: "For I say to you, unless your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees…"

Verse 19: "Therefore, whoever shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven; but whoever shall practice and teach them, this one shall be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven."

I want you to understand what's said here, what does it talk about? It talks about your attitude toward other people, first of all! Why? Why does He start out with your attitude? Jesus said:

Verse 21: "You have heard that it was said to those in ancient times, 'You shall not commit murder; but whoever commits murder shall be subject to judgment.' But I say to you, everyone who is angry with his brother without cause shall be subject to judgment…." (vs 21-22).

Which is greater? What is He showing? He is showing how the law of 'you shall do no murder' is fulfilled spiritually! Isn't that what He's doing? Yes, He is! In the past you could hate your enemy, hate your neighbor—even though the Bible says 'love your neighbor'—but now He's saying you're not even to have the wrong attitude. So, He starts with the attitude, because the attitude and the relationship with God must start with that attitude toward Him and toward others.

"…Now you have heard it said, 'Whoever shall say to his brother, "Raca," shall be subject to the judgment of the council.' But I say to you, whoever shall say, 'You fool,' shall be subject to the fire of Gehenna" (v 22).

Which is a greater sin, to say 'fool' to someone or to reject the Sabbath? Obviously, you'd have to say 'to reject the Sabbath' is a greater sin! If the one who says 'fool' in his heart, with absolute condemnation toward his brother is going to be in danger of hell fire, how much more do you think someone's going to be in danger of hellfire because they reject the Sabbath?

Lot's of times we read through these things and we don't even think! I mean, think of that! I'm going to prove to you today that never in the New Testament was there a question about the Sabbath or Holy Days necessary to be kept—period! Never a question! Just a misunderstanding in people's minds as to what was meant by the Law of Moses, which people who hate God's laws are trying to read back into it that you're not to keep the commandments of God. That's why Jesus started out here about your attitude.

Then He says if you're angry with your brother, don't even come to offer an offering and pray to Me because I 'ain't gonna hear it' until to go get reconciled with your brother! (vs 23-24). Pretty tough stuff—isn't it? Yes, it is! Is that what's going to judge us? Yes, that's what's going to judge us!

Verse 25: "Agree with your adversary quickly…"—everybody today is sue happy!

Verse 27: "You have heard that it was said to those in ancient times, 'You shall not commit adultery.'…. [Oh, don't worry about it, My grace covers everything. NO!] …But I say to you, everyone who looks upon a woman to lust after her has already committed adultery with her in his [mind] heart" (vs 27-28).

Then we come to the next one: He says what you need to do is pluck out your right eye or your left eye or your right foot or your left foot if they offend you (v 29). That's the effort that we are to make.

What is another major problem we have? One of the next major problems associated with adultery is divorce! Where there is adultery, then divorce follows—right? Yes, it does! This is living and real in the world today. Then He says unless it's for the cause of 'porneia' or fornication, there shall be no divorce (v 32).

Verse 33: "Again, you have heard that it was said to those in ancient times, "You shall not forswear yourself… [that is you yourself as an authority] …but you shall perform your oaths to the Lord. But I say to you, do not swear at all, neither by heaven, for it is God's throne; nor by the earth, for it is the footstool of His feet; nor by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great King. Neither shall you swear by your head, because you do not have the power to make one hair white or black" (vs 33-36).

You yourself cannot do that. I've been trying to get slimmer, but I think my inheritance says you can only go so far in doing it. Then He talks about your attitude even toward evil. Don't get mixed up in it; stay away!

Matthew 6—Jesus is saying when you do your 'religious works' it's between you and God. When you give 'alms' don't have the trumpeter's sound. When you fast don't do it in public. When you pray go into a quiet, private place, and when you get there don't use vain repetitions because God already knows what you need. Then He says you're 'hypocrites' all the way through—you have your reward (vs 1-16).

Matthew 6:19: "Do not store up treasures for yourselves on earth, where moth and rust spoil, and where thieves break through and steal; but store up treasures for yourselves in heaven, where neither moth nor rust spoils, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (vs 19-21). People will come along and say, 'We're not to give anything to anybody at all under any circumstances, because we're to lay the fruits of love, faith, hope and all that's up in heaven.'

Verse 22: "The light of the body is the eye. Therefore, if your eye be sound, your whole body shall be full of light. But if your eye be evil, your whole body shall be full of darkness. Therefore, if the light that is in you be darkness, how great is that darkness!…. [And that is true. In the middle of a storm there's what? There is darkness! And a lot of people give up.] No one is able to serve two masters…" (vs 22-24).

Very clear, you cannot serve God and Herbert. You cannot serve God and a minister. You cannot serve God and the world. You cannot serve God and money. Then He explains how we need to run our lives.

Matthew 7 talks about judging each other. If we make a judgment based on the Bible, that's fine; but it also needs to be laid out in such a way that a person can have a chance to recover themselves, lest we go around with great big planks in our eyes trying pull splinters out of somebody else's' finger and we knock out their eye or knock off their head or hand trying to help them.

Matthew 7:6: "Do not give that which is Holy to the dogs…" Unfortunately, that's what has happened in too many cases. They turned the Gospel of God into dog meat, or into swine's food.

"…nor cast your pearls before the swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn around and tear you in pieces" (v 6).

Let's see the buildup coming to those last verses in chapter 7, which we read earlier. Here's how to ask:

Verse 7: "Ask, and it shall be given to you. Seek, and you shall find. Knock, and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it shall be opened…. [that's how we're to run our lives] …Or what man is there of you who, if his son shall ask for bread, will give him a stone? And if he shall ask for a fish, will give him a serpent? Therefore, if you, being evil…" (vs 7-11).

That's why, brethren, we can't trust in our own logic; we can't trust in our own thoughts. That does not mean that a minister is to leverage that trust to himself. It means you have to trust in God.

"…if you, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Father Who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him? Therefore, everything that you would have men do to you, so also do to them; for this is the Law and the Prophets" (vs 11-12).

Matthew 5:17: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets…" is bracketed between that and it is included in the Law and the Prophets or the application of the Law of God! That's what He's saying here. There are too many people running around saying

  • we don't need to keep the commandments of God
  • we don't need to keep the Holy Days
  • we don't need to keep the Passover
  • we don't need to do all of those things.

I tell you one thing, it's just like if you went out in a hurricane: Someone said, that 'there are so many people upset, what they should have done is marched against God for sending the hurricane; protest to God.' If you want to know how powerful a person is, you go out and you stand in front of a hurricane or a storm and you shake your fist at it and you make it stop. If you can do that, then I will believe that God has suspended His laws. Until you can do that, you better take for cover and you'd better cover your little tail and your little head and get on your knees and pray for protection and deliverance.

Matthew 7:12—Jesus clearly said, "…this is the Law and the Prophets." What was He doing between Matt. 5:17 and Matt. 7:12? He was telling you how the law in our lives is to be fulfilled! No question about the Sabbath! No question about the Holy Days! That was a part of that society and life and that's why Jesus came to the Jewish society and not to the Roman society and not to the Chinese society, and not to the Indian society, because God had given His laws to the Jews and Jesus had to grow up in a community that kept the basic structures of the laws of God. Then He came along saying, 'Now you've got the laws of God, here is how they're going to be kept.'

Notice what He says after that, v 13: "Enter in through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction…"

Verse 15: "But beware of false prophets…" Are we not beset with them? Then beware of whole organizations that claim that they are doing God's work and are not (vs 21-29).

Now, let's go to Acts 15 and we'll do a couple of comparisons concerning the Law of Moses. Most people, when they read this, bring the pre-conceived lying notion of Protestantism and Catholicism to this verse, because they don't understand what it's saying, and they don't understand what it means. Until we can get this pre-conceived notion out of our minds we'll never understand it. So, we'll try and solve that problem today.

Acts 15:1: "Now, certain men who had come down from Judea were teaching the brethren, saying, 'Unless you are circumcised after the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.'" The word cannot in the Greek is 'en dunamai'—which means there is no power of salvation unless you're circumcised after the manner/custom of Moses. Was this trouble within the Church? Yes! Has there been trouble within the Church? Yes! Is it anything new? No! Just a different set of circumstances.

Verse 5: "But there stood up certain of those who believed… [believed that Christ was the Messiah; the Savior of the world] …who were of the sect of the Pharisees, saying, 'It is obligatory to circumcise them, and to command them [Gentiles] to keep the Law of Moses.'"

  • What is it that most people think of when they come to here?
  • What is the first wrong assumption that every Protestant makes and too many people make?
  • It means you don't have to keep any of the laws of Moses!

They're kind of stuck.

  • What does it mean 'the Law of Moses'?
    • The Law of Moses can be very broad or it can be very narrow!
    • It can be a single law or all five books that he wrote!

(go to the next track)

If this means all the five books of Moses, then this is in total contradiction of the words of Jesus Christ—is it not? Would have to be, undoubtedly! But this is what most Protestants believe and teach. So, we have to discern from the Bible: What does it mean, the Law of Moses? I had a man who was in the Church 20 years tell me over the phone, very straightforward, that we don't have to keep any of the Law of Moses. I said 'Then what are you going to do with the Ten Commandments'? Where, brethren, do you find the Ten Commandments? In the books of Mosesthe Law of Moses—is that not true? Yes, it is! Do you think the apostles would have the authority to turn over the words of Jesus Christ? Does any man? No! Jesus said, 'Don't even think it!' Let alone do it!

What are we talking about here? Let's look at a couple of other Scriptures so that we can get a little understanding. Now then, let's just take this thinking one step further before we go to some other parts. If this means that all the Law of Moses was done away, the first five books, you'd just cut them out of the Bible and throw it away, because you don't have to keep the Law of Moses, referring to the first five books. Then there is no reason to have laws against murder. There is no reason to have laws against adultery. There is no reason to have laws against thievery. No reason to have any laws!

By the way, in the vision on the Mount of Transfiguration, who was standing in the vision with Jesus? Moses and Elijah! That's right! If the laws of Moses were so bad that they had to be thrown out because Christ is good, how is Moses going to be in the Kingdom of God? The problem is that too many people out there are being 'driven by every wind of doctrine' and they don't know what they believe!They don't know whereof they're talking about with the Bible. Too many have been going to church as a social club and they have no roots into the Bible, so when the storm comes they are blown away!

Let's see what Jesus said to the Scribes and Pharisees concerning Moses John 5:45: "Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father. There is one who accuses you, even Moses, in whom you have hope." How is Moses going to accuse them? because the law is there: you shall do this; you shall not do that; and the other thing. That's how it's going to be done.

Verse 46: "But if you believed Moses, you would have believed Me; for he wrote about Me." You can go back and take even all of those animal sacrifices and see a picture and portrait of Christ in all of that, in the atoning power that comes through the sacrifice of Christ—even in those animal sacrifices which were superceded by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

Verse 47: "And if you do not believe his writings… [not just a simple little thing of Moses, of just the prophecies of Him] …how shall you believe My words?" (vs 45-47).

We know that Mal. 4 is talking about the day of the return of Christ. What does He say? Malachi 4:4: "Remember the Law of Moses My servant, which I commanded to him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments." Who gave the statutes and judgments? God did, directly face-to-face with Moses! He wrote the Ten Commandments on tables of stone, and He had Moses write the statutes and judgments in a book called the Book of the Law. After all, Moses couldn't carry down all those slates. If He put everything on stone can you imagine trying to carry those down off the mountain?

What is the ultimate thing that God wants done with the laws and commandments that He has? To be written in our hearts and our minds! It means, inscribed upon! What is the 'circumcision of the heart,' which is greater than circumcision of the flesh? Circumcision of the heart takes away the hard-heartedness of the mind! Instead of having the laws of God written in stone over here—and they were stony-hearted—that stony-heartedness is removed through the Spirit of God and those laws are written in our heart and our mind. If they're written in our heart and mind, how does that abolish anything? It doesn't! It fulfills it by fulfilling the Word of God that it's within our very being.

I would just have to say that most people do not even understand what the religion of Judaism is or the way that the Jews practice things. That's why they cannot understand what's being talked about here. They run off down the road thinking the way that Protestants do, that Jesus came to abolish the Law. He never abolished the Law any more than the law of gravity has been abolished.

Anything that has been changed, has been replaced with something better. Abolition of is not replacement of anything, but the removal thereof. Is not the sacrifice of Christ greater than all the animal sacrifices and all the temple ritual? Absolutely, yes, it is!

  • Is not having the laws of God written in our heart and our mind greater than having them written on our doorpost?
  • Having them written on a table of stone?
  • Printed on a piece of paper that we hang on the wall?
  • Yes, it is!
  • Is it not greater to go pray to God in private with all your heart than to do 'religious' works by walking down the street and throwing sackcloth and ashes and blowing trumpets?
  • Yes, it is!

That's what it's all about.

Jesus said to them after they accused Him of seeking to glorify Himself, John 7:18: "The one who speaks of himself is seeking his own glory…" If there is anyone who is out there preaching against the commandments of God:

  • What did Jesus say? 'He who teaches men so shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven.'
  • Whose glory is he seeking? His own!
  • Is that not true?
  • Why? Because you want to follow him!

It's the same way for those who idolize men to put them up and nearly deify them and say, 'My father' and call a 'religious' human leader a type of God the Father. That is near blasphemous! He who is doing that is not seeking the glory of God, but his own glory. I submit, until all of us ministers—I include myself in there because as long as we're in the flesh there's no guarantee of anything perfect—that we'd better be seeking the glory of God and Jesus Christ and His way and not our own. The Bible says, 'though sinners go hand-in-hand, they're not going to stand in the judgment.' So, it doesn't matter how many people are here there or whatever.

Verse 18: "The one who speaks of himself…"; of his own authority rather than the authority of God; that makes rules and regulations:

"…is seeking his own glory, but He Who seeks the glory of Him… [the Father's glory] …Who sent Him is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him. Did not Moses give you the law, and not one of you is practicing the law?…." (vs  18-19). Even though they had it, they weren't keeping it. When they tell you that if you keep the laws of God, which are written in the book of Moses, you're keeping the Law of Moses. No you're not, you're keeping the laws of God!

But He's saying here, none of you are keeping it. Even if you have it and you're not keeping it, you're just as bad off as someone who doesn't have it and doesn't keep it. In fact, you're worse off because God holds you responsible because you know; and the 'servant who knows to do good and does it not shall be beaten with many stripes. The one who doesn't know shall be beaten with few.' There's still a penalty one way or the other—right? Yes, indeed!
Now then, let's carry this one step further. Let's start in the book of Acts and we'll do a little survey. There's so much in the Bible to study it's amazing. We can hardly study enough to know to go forward from there. There are people who are so spiritually weak that they don't even know what to study or where to study and they say 'I know I need to study my Bible.' So they open their Bible and wherever it falls open to that's where they study. If you don't learn anything from it what good is going to do?

For example, this same man I talked to, when I said we ought to keep the Holy Days, he said, 'Where in the New Testament does it say that we have to keep the Holy Days?' So today, I'm going to answer that question.

There was never any question in the apostles' minds about keeping the Holy Days—never! Furthermore, when I said Acts 2, the day of Pentecost. He said, 'Oh, they just happened to be there that day.' There's nothing you can do with a mind like that, because Jesus Christ said to them 'Feed the flock.'

  • What else did He say in relationship to this very narrow thing that we're talking about in Acts 2 and Pentecost?
  • Go to Jerusalem and wait until you're imbued on high with power. Go to Jerusalem!
  • Why were they there?
  • They just 'happened to be there,' by command of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
  • Why?
  • Because He was going to give the Holy Spirit!

It was ten days!

  • Why did He not give the Holy Spirit before Pentecost?

If Jesus' whole goal was to undo the Holy Days and undo the commandments, the very first thing He should have done was tell them, 'Don't go to Jerusalem and don't be there on Pentecost because I want to show the world that those things, through Me, are no longer binding.' He didn't say that—did He? No way!

Acts 2:1: "And when the day of Pentecost, the fiftieth day, was being fulfilled they were all with one accord in the same place."

  • Is there any question about which day that was?
  • Is there any question about the meaning and the purpose of the day? None whatsoever!
  • Did God use the day of Pentecost for an absolutely fantastic purpose? Yes! Sending the Holy Spirit!
  • How important do you think that is? Mighty important!
  • Did He not send it on the Day of Pentecost, the same day in which He gave the Ten Commandments? Yes, indeed!
  • What does the Holy Spirit give us the power to do? To be able to keep the laws and commandments of God with understanding and with a right heart!

No question about a Holy Day.

All of the original apostles did not come from Australia as native aborigines. That may sound like a ludicrous statement—and some may say, 'Fred, you're a racist.' No, I'm not! But, they were all considered Jews! Was there any question then:

  • which day was the Sabbath?
  • which day was Pentecost?
  • which day was the Feast of Tabernacles?
  • No! No question!
  • Acts 3—no doing away with any commandments!
  • Acts 4—no doing away with any commandments whatsoever!
  • Acts 5—and we'll just interject here chapter 2 and 5—how did they raise money for the Church then?

If you truly want to return to the primitive faith and you want nothing whatsoever to do with tithing and the Law of Moses, and you want to strictly follow the New Testament, then I suggest you go to:

Acts 4:34: "For neither was anyone among them in want; for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the amounts of those things that were sold, and laid the money at the feet of the apostles; and distribution was made to each one according to his need" (vs 34-35). That's a higher requirement than tithing—is it not? Yes, it is! And they willingly did it; and it was money.

Now you know what happened to Ananias and Sapphira when they didn't do it—when they purposed to do it and publicly proclaimed that they would and didn't. They died! Any question about the Holy Days here? None! Any question about keeping the commandments here? None whatsoever!

Acts 5:10: "And she immediately fell down at his feet and expired. And the young men came in and found her dead; and they carried her out and buried her by her husband. Then great fear came upon the whole Church, and upon all who heard these things. And many signs and wonders were done among the people by the hands of the apostles…" (vs 10-12). Then they were arrested.

Verse 29: "But Peter and the apostles answered and said, 'We are obligated to obey God rather than men.'" Where does that put rejecting the commandments of God? If you want to be true New Testament, if you want to go back to the real primitive faith, here it is! "…We ought to obey God rather than men." How are you going to obey God if you don't follow the words of Jesus and follow what's written in the Word of God? If someone can tell me, please come and tell me. Here, I'm preaching to those who know. Hopefully, this will reach out to some people who are sitting on the edge of the storm and don't know it's going to knock them over and they'll run and get some help from God.

Verse 30: "The God of our fathers raised up Jesus Whom you killed by hanging Him on a tree. Him has God exalted by His right hand to be a Prince and Savior, to give repentance and remission of sins to Israel" (vs 30-31). What is sin? The transgression of the law! There it is right there. If the Law of Moses is gone, how can there be any sin? Impossible!

Let's see what they did here with Stephen. They arrested Stephen. Here is what the problem was, and this is the beginning of it, right here, Acts 6:11: "Then they suborned men… [in other words, sworn in at a trial—this thing with Stephen was a trial] …who said, 'We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God.' And they stirred up the people and the elders and the scribes; and they came and seized him, and brought him into the Sanhedrin. Then they set up false witnesses, who said, 'This man does not cease to speak blasphemous words against this Holy place and the law" (vs 11-13).

What was the Holy place in Jerusalem for, brethren? What was the temple in Jerusalem for? To offer sacrifices! What were they preaching? He obviously was not preaching Sunday! He obviously was not preaching Christmas, Easter and New Years! What was he saying? He was saying the temple is history. God is going to destroy and furthermore, these animal sacrifices have lost any effectiveness for spirituality through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. That's the heart and core of the whole problem.

Verse 14: "For we heard him saying that this Jesus, the Nazarean, will destroy this place, and will change the customs…"—the rites, the rituals. We are talking about the sacrificial rituals; morning and evening sacrifices; the sacrifices—all of them—regardless on which day they occurred: the incense offering, the meal offering, the drink offering. Why? Because the sacrifice of Jesus Christ superseded all of those! That's why!

Note Isa. 1 about if you offer sacrifices with no repentance—even though sacrifices—did you no good. Here is the whole summation of the friction of the Gospel vs the temple ritual.

Isaiah 66:1: "Thus says the LORD, 'The heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool. Where then is the house that you build unto Me? And where is the place of My rest? For all those things My hand has made, and all those things came to be,' says the LORD. 'But to this one I will look, to himwhoisof a poor and contrite spirit and who trembles at My Word'" (vs 1-2)—rather than depending upon an animal sacrifice or a temple ritual.

Verse 3 proves it: "He who kills an ox…" Without this proper attitude:

  • Where was the ox killed? At the temple!
  • Where was the blood offered? At the altar at the temple!

"…is as if he killed a man; he who sacrifices a lamb is as if he broke a dog's neck…'" (v 3).

I just imagine that's where Stephen was preaching, and he was standing there and saying to those priests: 'You go in here and you offer that sacrifice every day. You kill the ox and the lamb, yet, you have killed Christ! You think you're in good standing with God? Christ is going to come and destroy this temple and wipe out all these rituals! That's what he was preaching!

"…he who offers a grain offering is as if he offered swine's blood; he who burns incense is as if he blessed an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delights in their abominations. I also will choose their delusions, and I will bring their fears upon them because when I called, no one answered; when I spoke, they did not hear. But they did evil before My eyes and chose that in which I did not delight" (vs 3-4).

Stephen is telling them that Jesus said these things to you 'when He was present; you rejected Him, you despised His words and you killed Him. And yes:

  • He is going to destroy this temple
  • He is going to take away these rituals
  • He is going to take away this priesthood.'

Now you know why they went out and gnashed their teeth on Him and killed Him. No question about the Holy Days; just a question of how they kept them.

  • Acts 8—no question about the Holy Days
  • Acts 9—no question about the Holy Days—none whatsoever
  • Acts 10—no question about the Holy Days; the calling of Cornelius, the Roman centurion

Remember, the vision came down from heaven showing all the unclean animals and said, 'Rise, Peter, eat.' And he said, 'Lord, not so, I have NEVER eaten anything common or unclean!' This is about ten years after the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Never eaten! And after the vision he didn't say, 'Hooray! Bring on those pig-knuckles, oh I love to suck on those pus-filled pig knuckles. I've been lusting my whole life to have that, and, Lord, I am so happy You've just given me permission to go out and eat those things, and suck all of that and just….' I'm being very felicitous and graphic!

Just a little sideline: The next time you go to a 'quick stop' and you see this jug of pig-knuckles sitting there and one of these customers come in just drooling and says, 'give me a half a dozen of those pig-knuckles.' That happened to me one time. Here was this guy and he looked just like what he was buying. So, there must be some correlation!

No, Peter didn't say that! What was the problem? The problem was the Jews would associate with no one that was not a Jew!

  • wouldn't go in their house
  • wouldn't eat their food
  • wouldn't eat off their table
  • wouldn't eat any of their bread

They treated them worst than dogs. That's what the problem was. God said, through Peter, 'I am calling the Gentiles.' He sent Peter to do it. Furthermore, what did He do? He gave the Holy Spirit to Cornelius and his household before they were baptized, because even if Cornelius asked for baptism, I don't think that Peter would have been too much of a mind to baptize him until God had demonstrated to Peter that He was calling them and giving them the Holy Spirit. Then Peter said, 'Who can forbid that these be baptized seeing that they have received the Holy Spirit.'

When we come to Acts 11 we see some of the heart and core of the problem within the Church. Again, no question about the Holy Days! Cornelius being a Gentile and a proselyte and one who gave to the synagogue, who attended the synagogue:

  • Don't you think that Cornelius went there on the Sabbath?
  • Don't you think that he went there on the Holy Days?
  • Do you think that he could ever go into a Jewish synagogue on Christmas?

Or let's put into the terminology: Saturnalia or Brumalia, because that's what it was called then. Of course not!

  • Do you think he would have gotten away with bringing in one of the rosaries to Zeus? Of course not!

I mean, let's use our heads.

Acts 11:1: "Now the apostles and the brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the Word of God." Brand new thing! Guess what, folks, clear here into 15 years or so after the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the apostles didn't even know that God was going to call the Gentiles. Any question about the Holy Days? None whatsoever!

Notice their astonishment! Verse 2: "And when Peter went up to Jerusalem…" This was before telephones. They already had the word before hand. Why? Because just like these movies, there's always a sycophant, pitter-patter telling everything person going around….they already got there before Peter. They were already armed with the canons before Peter walked in the door.

"…those of the circumcision disputed with him, saying… [didn't even have a chance to explain] …'You went in to men who were uncircumcised and did eat with them.'…. [Tell us about this thing!] …But Peter related the event from the beginning and expounded everything in order to them, saying…" (vs 2-4)—and explained the whole thing.

Verse 15: "'And when I began to speak, the Holy Spirit came upon them, even as it also came upon us in the beginning. Then I remembered the Word of the Lord, how He had said, "John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit." Therefore, if God also gave them the same gift that wasgiven to us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to dissent?Do I have the power to forbid God?' And after hearing these things, they were silent; and they glorified God, saying, 'Then to the Gentiles also has God indeed granted repentance unto life'" (vs 15-18). But they still weren't ready to accept the Gentiles. They acknowledged that God brought them conversion.

Verse 19: "Now, those who had been scattered by the persecution that arose concerning Stephen went through Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews only." Here we are 15 years down into the preaching of the Gospel, going only to the Jews. Maybe it was 12 years, maybe it was 10—I won't argue five years one way or the other. Why did they only preach to the Jews? What did Paul say? 'To Jew first, then to the Gentile.' Yes, indeed!

Lo and behold the Gentiles at Antioch; God raised up a whole church. What did they do? They immediately erected a Christmas tree and celebrated!Of course not! I'm being facetious, deliberately, to show you how stupid and foolish and nonsensical and ungodly and unbiblical it is for anyone to say that the commandments of God are not to be kept. No! Who did they send?

Verse 22: "Now, the report concerning them was heard in the ears of the Church that was in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch." Does anybody know who Barnabas was? He was sent by the Church! What was Barnabas? An apostle! He was made an apostle the same time Paul was made an apostle. So, at this time, he must have been an evangelist.

Acts 4 will tell us who Barnabas was. This becomes very important, because who raised up the Church in Antioch? God did! How? Through the preaching of Jewish disciples! Any question concerning the Holy Days? with Jewish disciples? No! No! No! It said they sent Barnabas.

Acts 4:35[transcriber's correction]: "And laid the money at the feet of the apostles; and distribution was made to each one according to his need. And Joses, who was surnamed Barnabas by the apostles (which is, being interpreted, 'son of consolation'), a Levite, born in the country of Cyprus" (vs 35-36).

Do you think that he would have taught them anything other than the Sabbath and the Holy Days? No! So, the first Gentile church had what as a minister? A Levite! So, you see how all of these 'stupid' arguments totally fall to the ground when you really, truly, honestly go through and look that the Word of God completely.

Acts 11:22: "Now, the report concerning them was heard in the ears of the Church that was in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch. When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced; and he exhorted them all to cleave to the Lord with purpose of heart" (vs 22-23). That's too much in people's lives today: they don't have purpose of heart; they don't have commitment to God. They may have a religion; they may have a social club called a church, so therefore, when the storm comes and the hurricane hits, they're going to be taken away because their purpose of heart is not founded on that Rock of Christ.

Verse 24: "For he was a good man, and was filled with the Holy Spirit and with faith. And a large multitude was added to the Lord. Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to seek Saul; and after finding him, he brought him to Antioch…." (vs 24-26). What was Saul? Saul used to be a Pharisee! Any question about the Holy Days? None! None! NONE! What would they teach? They would teach that the sacrifices have been superseded by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ! The circumcision is now not in the flesh but in the heart. That takes place with baptism. That is the circumcision of the Holy Spirit, made without hands, and that's what the New Testament taught.

Acts 12:3: "…Now those were the days of Unleavened Bread." If they weren't keeping the Days of Unleavened Bread, pray tell, why would they even mention them? Some will say, 'Well, there aren't many places in the New Testament that mentions them.' The reason is, there was no question, and the reason is, the New Testament was written in a very short period of time. Paul wrote his first letter in 52A.D.. Matthew wrote the first Gospel, probably three years after the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The whole New Testament was written between the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the destruction of the temple—which is 40 years. Most of that was down in the last 20 years of that time, until John.

Therefore, there was never any question about the Holy Days. Never any question that they were required to be kept. That was never a dispute in the New Testament Church until after we come to the period of about 80-85A.D. just before the death of John. After John died, then the whole thing swept in and changed everything on the Gentile side.

Verse 4: "And after arresting him, he put him in prison, delivering him to four sets of four soldiers to guard him with the intent of bringing him out to the people after the Passover season"—'pascha' in the Greek—should never have been translated 'Easter' (KJV)

  • Do men try and tamper with the Bible to justify their beliefs? Yes, they do!
  • Are they exposed for their hideous crime? Yes, they are!

No question about it at all. Paul went out preaching, he and Barnabas.

Acts 13:14 "Now after passing through from Perga, they came to Antioch of Pisidia; and they went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and sat down. And after the reading of the Law and the Prophets the rulers of the synagogue said to them, 'Men, brethren, if you have a word of exhortation for the people, speak'" (vs 14-15). Paul stood up and caused a small riot in the synagogue.

Verse 42: "And when the Jews had gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles entreated him that these words might be spoken to them on the next Sabbath."

  • If the Jews were in the synagogue, where were the Gentiles? Still in the synagogue talking to Paul!
  • Did the Gentiles understand the Sabbath was binding? Yes!
  • Did the Gentiles know that they ought to keep the Sabbath? Yes!
  • Why say, 'next Sabbath preach these words to us'?

And Paul didn't say, 'Oh, hallelujah, the Lord has revealed that we now have a new day for the Gentiles, you come here tomorrow or we'll see you next Sunday.'

Verse 43: "Now after the synagogue had been dismissed, many of the Jews and the proselytes… [circumcised Gentiles, brethren; they were in the synagogue] …who worshiped there followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. And on the coming Sabbath, almost the whole city was gathered together to hear the Word of God" (vs 43-44).

Imagine what it would have been with television, nightly news, telephones, mail brochures going out: come and hear Paul next Sabbath at the synagogue.

Verse 45: "But when they saw the multitude, the Jews were filled with envy…['Hey, we never got that many people, what's going on here?'] …and they spoke against the things proclaimed by Paul, and were contradicting and blaspheming." We ain't seen anything yet! I've had one or two knock down arguments with some people.

I remember one. I went out to visit this man and his name was Job. He pronounced it 'job' because he didn't want to be called Job and be thought of as a patriarch. This was when we lived in Salt Lake City and he wrote in and said, 'could you have one of your ministers come out and visit me.' They sent the letter to me and I called him. I went out there and did I walk into it! Salt Lake City is Mormon country! I walked in and he says, 'Oh, these are the two bishops from my church, you don't mind if they're here—do you?' So, we had some knockdowns and drag outs.

I'll tell you, the long and short of it, after we went back and forth and everything, I looked at them and I said, 'You say that Joseph Smith said that God told him the Church died out so therefore, He's going to raise the Church up through Joseph Smith—that's your basic fundamental doctrine for the Church—correct? I'm stuck with a problem, because Jesus said He would build His Church and the gates of hell, the grave, would not prevail against it. That means the Church would never die out, so I'm confronted with a problem: either Christ lied or Joseph Smith lied, and I believe Christ. Who do you believe?' And of course that was the end of the conversation.

All Scriptures from The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version by Fred R. Coulter
Scriptural References:

  1. Matthew 7:26-27, 24-25
  2. James 3:1-10
  3. Ephesians 4:14
  4. Matthew 5:17-18, 20, 19, 21-22, 25, 27-28, 33-36
  5. Matthew 6:19-24
  6. Matthew 7:6-12
  7. Matthew 5:17
  8. Matthew 7:12-13, 15
  9. Acts 15:1, 5
  10. John 5:45-47
  11. Malachi 4:4
  12. John 7:18-19
  13. Acts 2:1
  14. Acts 4:34-35
  15. Acts 5:10-12, 29-31
  16. Acts 6:11-14
  17. Isaiah 66:1-4
  18. Acts 11:1-4, 15-19, 22
  19. Acts 4:35-36
  20. Acts 11:22-26
  21. Acts 12:3-4
  22. Acts 13:14-15, 42-45

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Psalms
  • 1 Corinthians 10:4
  • Matthew 24
  • Revelation 22
  • Matthew 5:23-24, 29, 32
  • Matthew 6:1-16
  • Matthew 7:21-29
  • Acts 3
  • Isaiah 1
  • Acts 8, 9, 10

Also referenced: Books:

  •  The Christian Passover by Fred R. Coulter
  • The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop

FRC:bo 
Transcribed: 4-4-10
Reformatted: 3/2014

 

BOOKS