In the world you will have tribulation, but be strong in the Lord!

Fred R. Coulter—December 26, 2020

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Greetings everyone! Welcome to Sabbath services!

News:

Special Report/Article: THANKS TO TRUMP: PASCAL LAMB COULD BE SACRIFICED ON TEMPLE MOUNT FOR FIRST TIME IN 2,000 YEARS

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz Feb 27, 2020 Biblical News
{https://www.israel365news.com/145899/thanks-to-trump-pascal-lamb-could-be-sacrificed-on-temple-mount-for-first-time-in-2000-years/}

What they claim as the Temple Mount is not the Temple Mount. It shows a picture and they say thanks to Trump. I don't know how Trump figures in on that, because it's rabbis who are doing it.

The altar is made of concrete block. What does it say that the altar has to be if you don't have the official constructed altar? It has to be of 'whole stones on the ground,' and you're 'not to take a tool to it,' and you are not to write on it.

This shows you how far the Jews really are from God, yet, they think that they are the chosen ones and their going to offer the Pascal lamb. Well, they're not going to. If they offer it, then what they're going to have to do is quickly remove it so they don't have a riot of the Muslim.

Remember that their minds are blinded! They are not looking for God to come to the earth as the Messiah; they're looking for a human man!

Some people get all excited and say that 'we're getting close to the end.' Well, we're closer to the end than we have ever been. But we're still not at the end, because we don't know how far the end is going to be, and we never know with the extension of repentance whether God will delay it somewhat or not. We don't know!

Now, speaking of the Passover: Get our Book: The Christian Passover. You need this book. Read through it, because if you don't understand the details of it, and the details are important…

Too many people today—because of the quick communications that we have with cell phones and so forth—don't get the details that are necessary. Let me tell you what started this book:

Paper: Passover in the Bible and the Church Today by Lester Grabbe & Robert Kuhn. This is a full frontal attack that occurred in WCG in 1977-78 against the Passover, trying to move it to the 15th.

So convincing were their arguments that even Ted Armstrong believed what they said and said that the Passover was on the 15th, 'but we take the Lord's Supper on the 14th.' Remember when the term Lord's Supper finally came into the Church? That's how it came into the Church. So, you need to understand, and you need to read the details. You need to understand everything in this book: The Christian Passover. That's vitally important.

If you can't read, we have it on CDs. We will send this paper out with your order of the Passover book, because this will help you to understand what happened.

  • What was the sacrifice in Exo. 12 for the Passover for? It was offered right after sunset as the 14th began: 'between the two evenings.'
  • What did they do with the blood? They put it on the side-posts and the lintel! Not the door.
  • Why did they do that? So the angel would pass over!
  • Where do we get the word Passover? Exo. 12, this is the Lord's Passover!

In this paper, the Jew—Robert Kuhn with three PhDs—says that 'we don't know where the term Passover came from.' So, you need to know all the details.

  • What is the difference between the meaning of the Pascal lamb (Exo. 12) and for us as Christians?
  • Jesus was the Lamb of God to take away the sin of the world!
  • Why is the one in Exo. 12 different?
  • All sacrifices are still a foretaste of Christ's sacrifice!

The Passover for those who are Christ's is for the forgiveness of their sins. The sacrificial lamb in Exo. 12 was not for the forgiveness of sin. It was so that God would pass over their houses and the firstborn would not be killed.

You also need to have this book, because you need to understand what are the differences between the sacrifice of the Passover lamb on the 14th, and the Passover Offerings of Deut. 16. That's very tricky, and you must know the details.

The Jews say that the Passover is commemorating their leaving Egypt. But that's not true! The Passover commemorates the sparing of their firstborn. They left Egypt beginning the next evening beginning the 15th day of the 1st month.

So, you read Exo. 12 about the offerings for the redemption of the firstborn, and that will tell you why the sacrifices in Deut. 16 are not Passover sacrifices, but Passover Offerings on the day portion of the Passover for the redemption of the firstborn!

The keys to that, when you read it in Deut. 16—and you'll never know it if you read it in the King James—are:

  • it was to offered from the flock or the herd

Have you ever heard of the Passover calf? No!

  • they were to be boiled

In Exo. 12 they were to be burned with fire and distinctly told 'do not boil at all.'

So, if you don't know those details you won't understand the Bible, and you will be surprised how many people fell for this attack against the Passover. The best way to destroy Christians is to get them out of covenant with God. The way you get them out of covenant with God, is to destroy their knowledge of the Passover and they do it on the wrong day. That's to say nothing of the Protestants and Catholics. But that's why it's so important.

*****

A lot of people are going to be depressed, some are going to be angry, and other people are going to be happy if Trump does not get the Presidency. He only has two ways to do it.

  • the Supreme Court takes several of those cases that they brought and make a ruling in Trump's favor

If there is such a controversy that they can't seat all the electors and guarantee the electors have given enough votes to Biden.

  • if there's not enough for Biden or Trump, the last thing is the House of Representatives where each state has one vote

That's in the Constitution. But in the meantime, there are some people already distressed over the fact that Trump is having difficulty. Some are downright afflicted by their own emotions that are in tailspin going down.

  • Did God say that the nation was going to go down sooner or later? It has to happen sometime!

Those who are in it, they're not going to like it; we're not going to like it when it happens here. So, you also need to ask:

  • Whose side is God on?
  • Has God left it to the choice of the people to see what His action will be?

We don't know, it could go either way! However, let's look at things this way:

  • Why do we have afflictions?
  • Why do we have those things coming upon us?
  • How many have we seen give up when they come?

If you give up because you see a man sin, don't be surprised.

  • Have you found a perfect man, yet?
  • Are you perfect?

No, but we do have trials and difficulties!

Prov. 24:8 looks a lot like what happened in the election. The election looks like all the establishment governments in all the world are against Trump.

Proverbs 24:8: "He who plots to do evil…"

Someone had to plot all of these evil conniving that have happened in the election. Could the transportation of over 200,000 votes in a truck from New York to Pennsylvania have been just a mild accident that just occurred? No!

"…shall be called a master of devious thoughts" (v 8). Isn't that true? Double-speak!

Verse 9: "The thought of foolishness is sin, and the scorner is an abomination to men. If you faint… [give into your weaknesses] …in the day of adversity, your strength is small" (vs 9-10). We're going to have to have strength to endure!

Why do we have trials and tribulations? I'm sure that we all go through them! We had a lot of those in the Church down through the time of our existence in the Church, and it's still going on.

Psalm 119:30: "I have chosen the way of Truth…"

That's the #1 reason that you have troubles and difficulties. Why? Because truth to the world is not Truth to you! It's the Truth of God that is important!

"…I have laid Your judgments before me" (v 30). Whatever God says, that's what it will be!

Verse 65: "You have dealt well with Your servant, O LORD, according to Your Word. Teach me good judgment…" (vs 65-66).

How are you going to know good judgment unless you know the Word of God, and unless you can see bad judgment out in the world, and you have something you can look at and compare with to understand what's going on?

Did you hear what the Pennsylvania Supreme Court did to Trump's appeal? This is plain stupid! They said that 'we will hear it after the inauguration. That's not even political, that is just blatant stupidity, as well as political.

"…and knowledge, for I have believed Your commandments" (v 66). That's what sets us apart from the world!

  • the laws of God
  • the Truth of God
  • the commandments of God

Verse 67: "Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I have kept Your Word."

That tells you in one verse the whole purpose of trials! For you to keep God's Word!

Verse 68: "You are good, and do good; teach me Your statutes."

Verse 71: "It is good for me that I have been afflicted, so that I might learn Your statutes."

What did Jesus tell the disciples just before He was arrested? In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good courage, I have overcome the world! That shows that when we have things we need to overcome, we need to go before God and get these things taken care of.

The book of Isaiah is good for a lot of things; many different things are accomplished in it and shows us. But in Isa. 1 it says that 'there is no soundness in Israel!' Just bruises. wounds and putrefying sores.' Isn't that true? Look at all the drugs, murders, lying, cheating, stealing, permissive and perverted sex, and alphabet sex. Look at what people do in their daily things, and those people who think that they're really, really 'good' people are 'religious' in keeping the holidays of this world! But they're so far removed from the Truth of the Bible they can't tell right from wrong.

Isaiah 40:29: "He [God] gives power to the weary… [that's why we have to come to God when we have trials and difficulties] …and to him with no might, He increases strength."

That's what we need to have; be strong in the Lord, be strong through the trials, and endure and learn!

Verse 30: "Even the young shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall; but those who wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength…" (vs 30-31).

Now is a good time to start renewing your strength if Biden gets in so that you can handle it the day it comes.

"…they shall mount up with wings as eagles… [the resurrection] …they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint" (v 31).

God is there with us in all of these things! It's going to be quite something either way. I mean, just look at what happened in Washington, D.C. in anticipation of the Trump march on Jan. 6th. They were already out there with ANTIFA beating up the people who came to peacefully protest. You can see what it's going to be either way. It's going to be a difficult situation.

Now, if you think getting Biden is bad enough, wait six months and we will have Kamala Harris as President. Then what? So, get ready and be armed and prepared!

Isaiah 41:8: "But you, Israel… [we can apply this to us, to the Church] …are My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham, My friend."

Galatians 3:29: "And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise."

Isaiah 41:9: 'Whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called you from its uttermost parts…."

God is the One Who calls us! Never forget the day that it really dawned on you what you need to do. That was the day that God chose you!

"…And I said to you, 'You are My servant; I have chosen you, and have not cast you away. Do not fear; for I am with you…'" (vs 9-10).

Regardless of the circumstances, God is always with us! It might get down to just some real tight squeezes as it were.

Every time I read something like that, I think of Jeremiah just before he was able to escape the invasion. He was thrown into the sewer. Picture yourself in muck up to your chest with all the smell, stench, all of that sort of thing. Everyone was ready to leave him alone to die. But a Cushite came and got a lot of rags and tied them together and helped pull him out. God promised that he would live.

But also, even if it gets terribly, terribly bad and you think that God has left you and there's no hope, He is there to help you. Remember that. Don't get despaired and get down because things are not going the way that you think they should or you would like them to go, any of that.

"…be not dismayed; for I am your God. I will strengthen you; yea, I will help you; yea, I will uphold you with the right hand of My righteousness" (v 10).

God is the One Who is going to see us through it all!

Verse 11: "Behold, all those who were angered against you shall be ashamed and confounded; they shall be as nothing. And those who strive against you shall perish. You shall seek them, and shall not find them; men warring against you shall be as nothing, and as a thing of naught, for I, the LORD your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, 'Do not fear; I will help you'" (vs 11-13).

  • do not be afraid
  • do not worry
  • do not get anxious

If you do, go to God in prayer and work it out in prayer! Ask God to help you with how you should think and react. When some of these things come down, it's going to be very discouraging to an awful lot of people, even in the Church!

Verse 14: "'Do not fear, you worm Jacob and men of Israel; I will help you,' says the LORD and your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel."

God will help us in ways that we don't even understand! This is why we study and pray every day! We learn, grow, and as we do we will be able to cope with difficulties that come, even if it get down to where you are so desperate that you're kind of like Jeremiah in the sewer. He escaped!

He wasn't taken to Babylon. Everybody else was, except just a few. He stayed back and told them to stay in the land and God will be with you. They said, 'No, we want to go to Egypt.' Then there's one little verse in the book of Jeremiah that just tells us a clue: and the daughters of the king!

They all went to Egypt. Why was it necessary for the daughters of the king? Because all the sons of Zedekiah were killed! There was no male heir to the throne. So, how was God going to fulfill His promise? Remember that whenever you get in trouble, remember the promises.

  • How is God going to fulfill the promise that David would always have a man to sit on the throne?
  • How could He do it if the sons of Zedekiah were killed?

Well, history tells us! They call it a myth, but it's true. Jeremiah went to Ireland because the twin of Perez was Zerah, and Zerah should have been the firstborn from Judah. When Zerah was being born he put his hand out and the midwife put a red string around his wrist and he pulled it back in and Perez was born first. That's called 'the breach.' That's what Perez means.

Look how many things went on how many years—wars, difficulties—before Jeremiah went to Ireland and married one of the royal princesses who happened to be from the house of Zerah.

So, when it looks like God won't keep His promises, He does! That's what we always need to understand.

Psalm 21:1: "The king shall rejoice in Your strength, O LORD; and in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!"

What we need to do is whenever we get down to the point that it's really rock bottom, think of why God has called us:

  • to be His sons and daughters
  • to live forever
  • to help rule the world

So, if you're upset at all the difficulties going on in the world, we're the ones who are going to straighten it out. That's a great thing!

Verse 7: "For the king trusts in the LORD…" That's what we need to do, trust in God in all things at all times!

"…and in the mercy of the Most High; he shall not be moved.

Doesn't matter what happens around you; it matters what happens in your mind: conversion and God's Spirit, that you won't be moved!

Verse 8: "Your hand shall find all Your enemies; Your right hand shall find those who hate You. You shall make them as a fiery oven in the time of Your anger; the LORD will swallow them up in His wrath, and the fire shall devour them" (vs 8-9).

This one here tie in with Lazarus and the rich man (Luke 15). He couldn't even get the crumbs from the rich man. But who went to the Lake of Fire? Lazarus? or The rich man? The rich man!

It doesn't matter what the circumstances may be, God is with you and for you!

What does God say about death? Blessed is the death of a saint! They have finished this physical purpose. A lot of us are going to face that.

Jonathan and I were talking about the last time we had a conference in Cincinnati, and he said that was a big crowd. But look out at the crowd and they're all gray haired. Yes, true! And at the same time the Church is going through this, we are in the midst of a generational change! When that happens, it will get down to a few. Like it is today and for those on the live hookup, your in your home alone. But when you combine it altogether, as God looks at it, that's quite a number of people who are receiving the message on the Sabbath Day. God has a way of taking care of all of these things!

Verse 11: "For they intended evil against You [God]…"

Did they not do that against Christ. Here's one of the prophecies of Christ. They were after Him from the first day that He walked into the temple area with that scourge, seeking to destroy Him.

"…they imagined a wicked thing which they are not able to perform, for You shall make them turn their back; You shall aim Your arrows upon Your strings against their faces. Be exalted, O LORD, in Your strength; so we will sing and praise Your power" (vs 11-13).

That's also going to be part of what we're doing when we're on the Sea of Glass.

Psalm 20:2: "May He send you help from the sanctuary, and strengthen you out of Zion." God will send the help one way or the other!

Think about this in relationship to some of the trials you may be facing or are going through:

Psalm 27:1: "The LORD is my Light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?"

You don't have to be afraid of anything or anyone. You don't have to worry about what's going to happen to you. We know that a lot of the saints went through a lot of the difficult things down through time, and we will, too.

Verse 7—this shows how we need to cry to God: "Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice…"

Crying out to God, 'Help me, O Lord! Help me, O Lord!' He will!

"…and be gracious unto me and answer me. When You said, 'Seek My face,' my heart said to You, 'Your face, O LORD, will I seek'" (vs 7-8).

That's how it is when we come before God. Another thing to do is get the Psalms when you pray. Get on your knees, open your Bible and read some Psalms and pray about it. Read some more and ask God:

  • to help you
  • to intervene for you
  • show you what you need to do
  • show you how you need to do it

He'll be right there to help you! And it will occur! It may take a little while, but it will happen!

(break)

Paul reveals a lot of how he felt and what he went through. This is good for us to know and understand so we can realize that whatever we go through, somebody somewhere in the Church is going through it at the same time.

Many people going way back have gone through different trials in their lives. So, 2-Cor. 4 is quite revealing, because it also shows that some of the trials and difficulties come because there are false preachers preaching things they ought not preach because of Satan the devil!

2-Corintians 4:1: "Therefore, having this ministry, according as we have received mercy, we are not fainthearted."

That's what to really keep in mind! Never give up! You may temporarily be depressed and down, but take it to God in prayer and He will help you.

Verse 2: "For we have personally renounced the hidden things of dishonest gain, not walking in cunning craftiness…"

This is for all of the elders and ministers. Some people have told me that there were so many different things going on in the Churches of God that it was like gorilla warfare in some cases. That's a terrible thing to happen within the Church. That's why a lot of people got so discouraged, too.

"…nor handling the Word of God deceitfully…" (v 2).

That's why everything with the Word of God has got to be the Truth, the Truth and put it together with the Truth! Then we can come to understand. If you have partial Truth you don't have all Truth. Think of it this way: Truth always agrees with Truth! If you're missing a part of it, don't get upset; find it! You will find it and put it together.

"…but by manifestation of the Truth, we are commending ourselves to every man's conscience before God. But if our Gospel is hidden, it is hidden to those who are perishing" (vs 2-3).

Why is it hidden? Because God has put the Bible together, as you know, 'a little here, a little there, precept here, precept there, line upon line.'

Verse 4: "In whom the god of this age… [Satan the devil] …has blinded the minds of those who do not believe…"

You must believe all the Bible. Jesus said that we are to:

  • live by every Word of God
  • Your Word is the Truth
  • we are sanctified by the Truth

Let those things encourage you when difficult times come along, because that will see you through it.

"…lest the Light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them" (v 4).

We are working on a second edition of God's Plan for Mankind Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days. Reading this verse reminded me of it, because if you took that book and just put it under the nose of a Protestant minister and tell him that 'if you read this book you'll understand what God is doing.' I don't think there is one in a hundred that would do it, because their minds are blinded because of what they believe!

Verse 5: "For we do not preach our own selves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake."

That's the way it needs to be! It's not authority from the top down. The only authority from the top down is God the Father and Jesus Christ to each one of us with the Holy Spirit! That's by God's authority!

The authority of the ministry is from the minister up to the brethren, like Jesus said. If you are going to serve the brethren, you are going to be a servant! Not above, but below!

Verse 6: "Because it is God Who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, Who shined into our hearts the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."

Here again, what is Paul doing? He's looking at the goal! Whenever there are difficulties, always look at the goal! Remember that what we're going through is not any different from what anybody else has gone through.

Verse 7: "Now, we have this treasure in earthen vessels… [treasure of God's Spirit] …in order that the supremacy of the power may be of God, and not from us."

Always from God! In the past—in whatever church you may have been—you've got this little group over here and that little group over there, and everybody is kind of competing against the other to see who is going to get the minister's eye and if they can become whatever they're going to become. That's not what God wants. We need to look at this way: coming direct from God the Father and Jesus Christ.

Verse 8: "On every side we are hard pressed…"

Paul was! You read 2-Cor. 11 and what he went through. I know that whenever you get really down, down, down, you go read 2-Cor. 11 and read what Paul went through. Just two things: he was beaten three times with rods and five times with a whip. He was a day and a night in the deep, so he had to be holding onto some piece of wood or something. I imagine that out there in the middle of nowhere here he is God's apostle and no one around, no one knows where he is. He doesn't know if he's going to live or die, probably praying for God to keep the sharks away. Hey, that would be a nice meal, nice legs hanging down in the water. But God rescued him!

"…but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in our bodies the dying of the Lord Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies" (vs 8-10).

In other words, keeping always in mind the very purpose of why Christ died and was raised from the dead.

Verse 11: "For those of us who are living are always delivered to death for Jesus' sake, that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our mortal flesh."

That's what it's for! So, every trial and test is an opportunity to grow in grace, knowledge, faith and understanding. In addition to that, you will be able to help others who are going through the same thing. Quite an important thing.

Verse 12: "So then, on the one hand, death is working in us; and on the other hand, life is working in you. And having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, 'I believed, therefore, I have spoken,' we also believe; therefore, we also speak, knowing that He Who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead shall also raise us through Jesus, and shall present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, so that the abounding grace may cause the thanksgiving of many to overflow unto the glory of God. For this reason, we do not lose heart…" (vs 12-16).

That's the sum of everything that he is talking about up to this point. So, do not lose heart when these things are taking place. That's the whole reason: do not lose heart!

"…but if our outward man is being brought to decay, yet, the inward man is being renewed day-by-day" (v 16).

That's what God wants. It talks about the renewing of our mind, and the Greek word is metomorphos. It is a slow changing of the mind by having the laws and commandments of God written our heart and mind, and this is how we think and get through these difficulties. We see them from the perspective of God, not the perspective of depravation that the world sees them. That's why we have to understand all of these things.

Verse 17: "For the momentary lightness of our tribulation…"

Whenever I read that, I think: You better not complain about anything, Fred! You haven't done anything! You haven't gone through anything. Yes, we've had some difficult times. But not compared to this.

"…is working out for us an immeasurably greater and everlasting fullness of glory; while we consider not the things that are seen, but the things that are not seen. For the things that are seen are temporary; but the things that are not seen are eternal" (vs 17-18).

The whole trial that he was going through, and he had one of the roughest ones of all. You read through the book of Acts and read about what he went through. God had to rescue him and send him down to be under house arrest in Caesarea and had two years of recuperation where he wasn't able to get out and do very much of anything before he went to Rome.

If you look at that way, and also at that time Luke was able to write the book of Acts and also the Gospel. Let's see how this worked in his ministry. Here in Col. 2 is the fruit that was produced by all the suffering that Paul went through. Notice how he was able to write and encourage the brethren and prepare them:

Colossians 1:9: "For this cause we also, from the day that we heard of it… [how well they were doing] …do not cease to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding."

That was Paul central thing, and this is what it needs to be with all of us as elders. It's not that we are important because of what we do. The importance is that we teach the Word of God so everyone can grow in grace and knowledge. Here Paul is explaining that to them. Then you look back at all the difficulties that you go through—just like the Apostle Paul look back and saw that—and see that it was for their edification, glory and overcoming. Later they also had their own problems.

Verse 10: "That you may walk worthily of the Lord, unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God."

Think about how this is brought out, how Paul is saying that they're learning. That needs to also be with us.

Verse 11: "Being strengthened with all power according to the might of His glory…"

That is through the Holy Spirit and that's what sees us through all of these difficulties.

"…unto all endurance and long-suffering with joy… [that's what it will produce] …giving thanks to the Father, Who has made us qualified…" (vs 11-12).

Many times, and we talk about it quite often, that our relationship is direct with God the Father and Jesus Christ. That was typified by the Tabernacle of David when he had the tabernacle in his own house. The Tabernacle of David being revived and built up is the Church in its close connection with God the Father and Jesus Christ.

If we're close, which we need to be, then we'll be able to overcome and be able to handle the stress and trauma, and we will be able to handle the difficulties that come.

"…unto all endurance and long-suffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father, Who has made us qualified for the share of the inheritance of the saints in the Light; Who has personally rescued us from the power of darkness…(vs 11-13).

How did you, how did I, how did everyone end up in the Church? God rescued us from the power of darkness! Darkness covers the whole world today. I mean, look at this today, this election proves that for sure.

"…and has transferred us unto the Kingdom of the Son of His love" (v 13).

This does not mean that we're in the Kingdom of God, because flesh and blood cannot enter the Kingdom of God. But this means that we are under the jurisdiction of the Kingdom of God, the laws and commandments of God, the Spirit of God and everything that God wants to do for us.

Verse 14: "In Whom we have redemption through His own blood, even the remission of sins; Who is the image of the invisible God, the Firstborn of all creation" (vs 14-15).

That's a little tricky, and we'll see how that's explained in another verse. That doesn't mean that Jesus Christ was born before all creation. But concerning the resurrection:

  • Who was first? Jesus!
  • What is God doing with us? Creating in us the character, the mind of Christ and all the things necessary so we can prepare for the resurrection!

We're being created in the image and likeness of Jesus Christ. We'll see Him as He is. That's what it is, and we'll see it explained in just a little bit.

Verse 16: "Because by Him were all things created, the things in heaven and the things on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether they be thrones, or lordships, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him and for Him."

Think about that! Being called of God into this relationship with Him and Jesus Christ. There is nothing on this earth—no king, queen, prince, president, governor—is greater than this. God has conferred it upon us, His saints, and all the saints down through time. That's what's important.

Verse 18: "And He is the Head of the Body, the Church; Who is the Beginning, the Firstborn from among the dead…" That explains that verse previously!

"…so that in all things He Himself might hold the pre-eminence. For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell" (vs 18-19).

Think about what that's going to be for us. An amazing thing!

Verse 20: "And having made peace through the blood of His cross, by Him to reconcile all things to Himself; by Him, whether the things on the earth, or the things in heaven. For you were once alienated and enemies in your minds by wicked works; but now He has reconciled you" (vs 20-21).

Think about what this verse says; that's why the conversion is of the heart and mind.

Verse 22: "In the body of His flesh through death, to present you Holy and unblamable and unimpeachable before Him."

Now, go back to v 9, and all of this leads up to this IF:

Verse 23: "If indeed you continue in the faith grounded and steadfast, and are not moved…" Not dejected, but grounded!

Who is the Stone? Christ is the Chief Cornerstone! We are grounded on that! That's what it has to be! We can't be like James says: IF you don't believe THEN you're like unstable water! We're grounded and steadfast; that's quite a comparison. Remember that James was the half-brother of Jesus.

James 1:3: "Knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance"—which is keeping at it in spite of everything that comes along!

Verse 4: "But let endurance have its perfect work, so that you may be perfect and complete, not lacking in anything. However, if anyone lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, Who gives to everyone freely and does not reproach the one who asks;and it shall be given to him. But… [here's how not to do it]: …let him ask in faith, not doubting at all because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven by the wind and tossed to and fro. Do not let that man expect that he will receive anything from the Lord" (vs 4-7).

So, water is unstable! It can be vapor, water or ice. It can be separated into oxygen and hydrogen. Water is so unstable that if there is a one percent decline, water will start running. But IFyou have endurance and strength spiritually, THEN none of those things will come upon you.

Colossians 1:23: "If indeed you continue in the faith… [not giving up] …grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away… [not unstable as water] …from the hope of the Gospel, which you have heard, and which was proclaimed in all the creation…"

He didn't get it to all creation, but it's going to be. So, this is what is called a prophetic perfect; it's as if it is done. It's as if God said that it will be. That means in this age:

  • What's going to happen during the Millennium?
  • What's going to be preached? The Gospel of the Kingdom! The plan of God!
  • What's going to be preached during the Great White Throne Judgment? Exactly the same thing!

Philippians 3:1: "Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. Indeed, for me to write the same things to you is not troublesome, but for you it is safe. Beware of dogs…" (vs 1-2).

That is not referring to canines. That's referring to those evil people who want to take away your faith!

"…beware of evil workers, beware of the concision. For we are the circumcision, who serve God in the spirit and rejoice in Christ Jesus…" (vs 2-3).

Colossians says that we have 'the circumcision made without hands by baptism. So, the physical circumcision has been superseded by the spiritual circumcision, the conversion of the mind and getting rid of the hostility that is in the mind toward God and His Word!

"…and do not trust in the flesh" (v 3).

You can't say that you're this, that and the other thing. So what? If you're not with Christ, what are you? It doesn't matter if you're not a king, lord or whatever. So, Paul says:

Verse 4: "Though I might also have reason to trust in the flesh. If any other thinks he has cause to trust in the flesh, I have much more: Circumcised on the eighth day…" (vs 4-5).

So, Paul reiterates everything that it was for him to be a Pharisee.

"…of the race of Israel, from the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; with respect to law, a Pharisee" (v 5).

You also need our book: Judaism: A Revelation of Moses or a Religion of Men? by Philip Neal.

Verse 6: "With respect to zeal, persecuting the Church…"—and he never forgot that!

I imagine that one of the motivating things in his life—because it's brought up here and he brings it up in other places—was that he remembers the look and the anguish on those whom he arrested and led off to prison and caused to blaspheme. That's quite thing to live with, even though he was forgiven and an apostle of God. But that was always a humbling thing for him. 

"…with respect to righteousness that is in law… [traditions of the Jews] …blameless. Yet, the things that were gain to me, these things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ" (vs 6-7).

That's why the baptismal covenant is a symbolic death. We die in that watery grave. We died to the gain and things in this world and look to the Kingdom of God and salvation through Christ.

Verse 8: "But then truly, I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord; for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as dung; that I may gain Christ… [that's quite an important and profound thing] …and may be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is derived from law, but that righteousness, which is by the faith of Christ, the righteousness of God that is based on faith" (vs 8-9). That is within us! How we live, obey and what our lives are like.

Verse 10: "That I may know Him…"

Notice that how in every one of the Epistles of Paul, he always pointed to the goal. This why it's important for us when we have difficult times that we're going to face. Always look to the goal! Regardless of how good or bad it may be, it's temporary and it's all going to go one day anyhow! We may be the ones who have to live through it. And if we are the ones who have to live through it, we have to take it the right way.

Imagine what it was like being in Jerusalem when the rebellion of the Jews against the Romans began in the summer of 66A.D.? Then the Romans let them all in and by 70A.D. it was an awful sight to behold. Everything was destroyed and that exactly as Jesus said it would take place.

"…and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death" (v 10).

So, Paul looked at every difficult thing he went through as part of a continuation of the same king of thing that Jesus went through.

Verse 11: "If by any means I may attain unto the resurrection of the dead… [the goal] …not as though I have already received, or have already been perfected…" (vs 11-12).

No, we don't go along and say, 'Look how perfect I am today.' If you say that, look out tomorrow, you may have something to prove otherwise.

"…but I am striving…" (v 12). That's the whole purpose of all of it. So that we:

  • strive
  • grow
  • change
  • overcome

"…so that I may also lay hold on that for which I also was laid hold of by Christ Jesus" (v 12).

Think about this, this is absolutely true. The only time it could be said that we have made it is when you give your last breath in faith. You can't say you've really made it until then!

Verse 13: "Brethren, I do not count myself as having attained; but this one thing I doforgetting the things that are behind… [Paul had a lot of things to forget that were behind] …and reaching forth to the things that are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus" (vs 13-14).

This is the attitude that we need when we're confronted with trials and difficulties that are going to come. We know that one of the biggest trials is going to come on January 6th and 20th, then everything that follows from that.

Verse 15: "So then… [here's the conclusion of this for us] …let as many as be perfect be of this mind…."

If there's anything in your mind that you're still holding onto, now you know that you need to get rid of, pray and ask God to help you get rid of it, especially if it's something between brethren within the Church; solve the problem!

Remember what Jesus told the disciples? If you have fault with one another, go to him alone! Solve the problem! That's what God wants. Now, if the person is already dead, then what you need to do is forgive in your mind and in your heart your feeling that you had toward that individual, because that is what is a cog that is missing in your relationship with God. When you do that, you will be amazed how that's going to life a burden right off your mind.

You can't go around holding a grudge against people, regardless of what it may be. Forgive them!

"…let as many as be perfect be of this mind…. [looking forward and forgetting the thing behind] … And if in anything you are otherwise minded, God… [this His Spirit] …will reveal even this to you" (v 15).

Why? So you can repent! God wants us to repent, and the way we are today, we've got stuff to repent of every day.

Verse 16: "Nevertheless, in regard to that which we have attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same mind…. [here's what it needs to be]: …Brethren, be imitators together of me, and bear in mind those who walk in this way, as you have us for an example. (For many walk contrary; I have often told you of them, and I tell you now with weeping, they are the enemies of the cross of Christ; whose end is destruction…" (vs 16-19).

Verse 20: "But for us, the commonwealth of God exists in the heavens, from where also we are waiting for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who will transform our vile bodies, that they may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the inner working of His own power, whereby He is able to subdue all things to Himself" (vs 20-21).

There we have it, brethren! As we look at the next couple of weeks that are coming down, and all the difficulties that we're going to be seeing on the news, thinking about all the problems that are going to take place with it, keep your mind on these things with this message so that you will have a proper perspective. Yet, take that on beyond so that we can make progress in everything that we do. Be strong in the Lord!

Scriptural References:

  • Proverbs 24:8-10
  • Psalm 119:30, 65-68, 71
  • Isaiah 40:29-31
  • Isaiah 41:8
  • Galatians 3:29
  • Isaiah 41:9-14
  • Psalm 21:1, 7-9. 11-13
  • Psalm 20:2
  • Palm 27:1, 7-8
  • 2 Corinthians 4:1-18
  • Colossians 1:9-16, 18-23
  • James 1:3-7
  • Colossians 1:23
  • Philippians 3:1-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Exodus 12
  • Deuteronomy 16
  • Isaiah 1
  • Luke 15
  • 2 Corinthians 11
  • Colossians 2

Also referenced:

Article: THANKS TO TRUMP: PASCAL LAMB COULD BE SACRIFICED ON TEMPLE MOUNT FOR FIRST TIME IN 2,000 YEARS
by Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz Feb 27, 2020 Biblical News
{https://www.israel365news.com/145899/thanks-to-trump-pascal-lamb-could-be-sacrificed-on-temple-mount-for-first-time-in-2000-years/}

Books:

  • The Christian Passover by Fred R. Coulter
  • God's Plan for Mankind Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days by Fred R. Coulter
  • Judaism: A Revelation of Moses or a Religion of Men? by Philip Neal

Paper: Passover in the Bible and the Church Today by Lester Grabbe & Robert Kuhn

FRC:bo
Transcribed: 12/30/20

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