Comfort Now of and In Eternally the Forever Kingdom of the New Earth!

{Comfort, Real Awareness Versus False, and Doctrinal Falling Away on the Ultimate Peace and Comfort of the Forever Kingdom Part 1.}

Sadness, sometimes, can be like a overwhelming entity that intrudes into our lives; however the COMFORT must become a larger awareness in our lives.

“Therefore comfort one another with these words.”  (I Thessalonians 4:18)

In order to have the comfort combat sadness, overcome sadness, and dominant sadness we must read about the COMFORT, think about the COMFORT, and talk about the COMFORT.

“Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. (I Thessalonians 4:13 NIV)

  1. Read about the COMFORT.

“For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.”  (I Thessalonians 4:15-18)

  1. Think about (overcoming by awareness) the Comfort of Victory at the Second Coming of Christ.

“Behold! I tell you a mystery.  We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality.  When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:  ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’  ‘O death, where is your victory?  O death, where is your sting?’

The sting of death is sin, and  the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.   Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”  (I Corinthians 15:51-58)

  2. Comfort is a place of peace: from the very God of Hope, an inward filling that overcomes the sadness with ALL joy and peace–BELIEVE IT for more awareness; then abound in that HOPE through the power of the Holy Spirit that is inside you.  You must admit that the power of both the God of Hoe and the indwelling Holy Spirit is much greater than any entity of sadness.

“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Spirit.”  (Romans 15:13)

Some References for Research

  1. Romans 15:13 KJV
  2. Comfort is a place of rest.


  1. Ultimate Comfort to think about the Eternal Comforts in the Forever Kingdom on the New Earth.

Sorry we have to fight for awareness and Bible convictions on that eternal kingdom; for even though we know from Bible that “we war not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places”, sometimes in these days of struggle with the Dallas Theological Seminary on eschatology, and the fuedamentalists currently in leadership control of the SBC, especially with Lifeway book store which is allowing DTS graduates to cram new Scofield based Study Bibles into the book shelves and online with their warped focus on such non-literal Bible words as “millennium”, “rapture”, and “dispensationalism”, we tend to forget like maybe can not see the forest for the trees, that Satan sponsors the Scofield Reference Bible notes, that the great apostasy of the Falling Away is raging for Protestants in the SBC even as it raged 1000 B.C. in the Roman Vatican with “doctrines of devils and seducing spirits.”

Sometimes we must fill that the Apostle Jude who found it necessary to divert from his efforts to write a book on salvation in order to “contend for the faith once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude).  Even as we seek for the comfort of awareness of completed salvation in the Forever Kingdom, we must get through the damming and damaging influence of such feud mentalist on diversions of eschatology.  WE MUST CONTEND FOR THE FAITH OF LITERAL BIBLE ESCHATOLOGY against the false claims of literalism of the SBC leaders like Rogers, Criswell, and Stanley with their followers like Judge Pressler in their 10 year plan for political control, a battle they won; and now seek through such DTS graduates as Dr. Jeffress of FBC Dallas to extend that victory to doctrinal control with the assistance of Lifeway books.

You know even as the Roman Vatican pope after their great doctrinal follies of forbidding meats and refusing marriage to Priests, and were accused of many as the anti-Christ and his Prophet, we now have in 2018 a Protestant equivalent in Jeffress and Lifeway dominated by the study bibles of DTS.

  1. The Prophet Jeremiah found himself in the same position of wanting for the Nation the Peace of God, having to contend with the falling away (backsliding) in Jerusalem and Israel of prophets, pastors, priests, and people bent on a false peace and a false comfort in spite of the fact God had told them 200 years ago that Jerusalem would be destroyed! So much like America religion today is the times of Jeremiah, what with the Scofield controlled DTS, SBC, and Lifeway study Bibles, and with Swaggart preaching on a great false world wide revival that is not going to come, installing a false hope of peace and comfort in people that is the opposite of the great apostasy of the Falling Away that is really happening now and greater in the future until the Battle of Megiddo and the Coming of Christ to establish the Beginnings of Peace for the New Jeremiah of “Peace, Pastors, Priests, Prophets, and People”, or the 5P’s of New Jeremiah:
  2. Peace and Optimism are twins, and the dictionary definitions of Optimism are:

      1.. disposition or tendency to look on the more favorable side of events or conditions and to expect the most favorable outcome.

     2.  the belief that good ultimately predominates over evil in the world.

  1. the belief that goodness pervades reality.
  2. the doctrine that the existing world is the best of all possible worlds.
  3. Peace, Not the Time for Peace In Jeremiah. THERE IS NO PEACE, NOT THE TIME  {Research and Notes from Jeremiah}

Gist:  A fresh look at Jeremiah on PEACE and PROPHETS, more specifically false peace and optimism and false prophets.

Peace in Jeremiah

  1. Immediate destruction was promised from God, there was no need for optimism. There is a time for every thing under the sun, and this was the time to mourn and be both pessimistic and realistic.

And their houses shall be turned unto others, with their fields and wives together: for I will stretch out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, saith the LORD.  For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.  They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when  there is no peace.  Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the LORD.

  1. Why does God guarantee His own people immediate destruction, alias “my hand on the inhabitants of the land…” (6:12) Three reasons are listed.

(1) All the way from the least in the nation to the greatest in the nation, they are all given over to covetousness.  In our terms, you have to say that they are wrapped up in material things, what money can buy, and how to achieve success by what they dream and what they want.  {All the prophets of the day were wrapped up in positive dreams which ignored the impending calamities.}

(2) The prophets and priests are dealing falsely in that they are not doing their jobs correctly.

  1. They are obviously healing some hurt of the people but only slightly. One might call it bare min to keep earning their salary, position, and remain popular with the people with words of comfort.
  2. The message that only comforts and heals slightly is the message of Peace when it is a time and circumstance under God when THERE IS NO PEACE!
  3. The people remained unashamed and without guilt for their acts of abominations, primarily of violation of the 10 commandments and idolatry, the temple message of Jeremiah and chapter 7.
  4. In a way the book of Jeremiah is introduced right here centering around PEACE and PROPHETS. Granted that this was not stressed in the three levels of Bible study on Jeremiah previously as all of us hate to be careful of those with positive and optimistic messages for the immediate future.
  5. Those who choice a positive outlook or a superficial one that applies the right Scripture to the wrong time are like Jeremiah when God first started dealing with him about the upcoming destruction–”God had promised and promises Peace”, Jeremiah 4:10, the first mention of peace in Jeremiah 4:10:

“Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! surely thou hast greatly deceived this people and Jerusalem, saying,  Ye shall have peace; whereas the sword reacheth unto the soul.”

Jeremiah’s words are stronger than that!  God, with respect though for it is “Lord God”, you have greatly deceived this people.  This is sort of like the words that would come out of the atheists and sceptics today except more applied to religion than to the Bible.  Many Christians almost think that they today in their narrow and small scope of the total Bible message, often by choice. Thinking in their own little brains that God still promises peace at any time and any place, and they fail to consider the signs of the times.  Peace would be a good message at the right time, but not now!

  1. If your preferred message heals the realistic hurt and hurts of the people, then you are popular and optimistic preachers of peace that are hurting the people even more than you are helping them even when you are able to disguise the hurt from the healing. By the way, did you note that peace is mentioned three times here as if one of the popular preachers was choosing the key and dynamic words to shout out with a smile while the real gist is hidden, and those who want a certain message can hear it no matter what all the words are.  Of all the words in the verse, followers of the popular can take away healing, healing of hurt, my people, daughter, all pleasant words, and peace; and never get the real and realistic message.

“They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace.”  (Jeremiah 6:14)

  1. Jeremiah 8:15 must be understood in the context of the Jeremiah 8 chapter.

“We looked for peace, but no good came; and for a time of health, and behold trouble!”

Even before we get into Jeremiah 8, you can begin to see both how “PEACE” is used in Jeremiah and how it is abused in messages today, from the religious and secular world.  Peace here means:  (1) good times, time of health, and absence of trouble.  Just the very matters some positive popular preachers of prosperity tell you to look forward to today with matters of self-improvement; and you know who the most popular ones of the popular are, the two Js, _Joel and Jimmy.

  1. Peace in peaceable of 9:8. More like civility and kindness.
  2. Land of peace in 12:5.
  3. No flesh have peace in 12:12.
  4. What the prophets were saying about peace in 14:13.

“Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, the prophets say unto them, Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine; but I will give you assured peace in this place.”

  1. You definitely will not see the sword of war, very similar to those who are talking today, more the social prophets of the future.
  2. You shall not, more than will not, have famine; just the opposite of guaranteed famine in Revelation as the specifics of the guaranteed destruction is spelled out item by item.
  3. Once again you see some content of positive peace in Jeremiah, it is a lack of war and famine.
  4. Jeremiah 14:19
  5. Jeremiah 16:5 some of God’s peace is internal like loving kindness and mercy

“For thus saith the LORD, Enter not into the house of mourning, neither go to lament nor bemoan them: for I have taken away my peace from this people, saith the LORD, even lovingkindness and mercies.”

  1. In Jeremiah 23:17 PEACE and Prophets come together–

“They say still unto them that despise me, The LORD hath said, Ye shall have peace; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, No evil shall come upon you.”

NOTE:  The peace verse here is best understood in the total context of Jeremiah 23, and what God thought of all the Prophets then in Judah and Jerusalem except the Prophet Jeremiah.

  1. In verse 1-8 it is the pastors in the land that are under attack, and we conclude that the subject continues as such only as a attack by God on the prophets.
  2. Jeremiah 9-16.

“Mine heart within me is broken because of the prophets; all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a man whom wine hath overcome, because of the LORD, and because of the words of his holiness. (verse 9)

“For the land is full of adulterers; for because of swearing the land mourneth; the pleasant places of the wilderness are dried up, and their course is evil, and their force is not right.”  (verse 10)

For both prophet and priest {this clarifies the pastors of Jeremiah 1-8 as these prophets and priests, those called and chosen to be messengers for the kingdom of God} are profane; yea, in my house have I found their wickedness, saith the LORD. (verse 11)

“Wherefore their way shall be unto them as slippery ways in the darkness: they shall be driven on, and fall therein: for I will bring evil upon them, even the year of their visitation, saith the LORD.” (verse 12)

“And I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria; they prophesied in Baal, and caused my people Israel to err.” (verse 13)

“I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies: they strengthen also the hands of evildoers, that none doth return from his wickedness: they are all of them unto me as Sodom, and the inhabitants thereof as Gomorrah.” (verse 14)

“Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts concerning the prophets; Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall: for from the prophets of Jerusalem is profaneness gone forth into all the land.” (verse 15)

 “Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain: they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the LORD.”  (verse 16)

NOTE:  The effects for bad in the prophesying or preaching from these pastors and prophets:  (1) make the people vain, or worthless in the sight of God.  (2) They speak out of their own heart.

  1. Jeremiah 23:17-26.

 “They say still unto them that despise me, The LORD hath said, Ye shall have peace; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, No evil shall come upon you.”  (verse 17)

 “For who hath stood in the counsel of the LORD, and hath perceived and heard his word?  who hath marked his word, and heard it?”  (verse 18)

“Behold, a whirlwind of the LORD is gone forth in fury, even a grievous whirlwind: it shall fall grievously upon the head of the wicked.”  (verse 19)

“The anger of the LORD shall not return, until he have executed, and till he have performed the thoughts of his heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly.”  (verse 20)

“I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied. But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings.”  (verses 21,22)

 “Am I a God at hand, saith the LORD, and not a God afar off?  Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD.”  (verses 23,24)

I have heard what the prophets said, that prophesy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed.” (verse 25)

“How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart…”  (verse 26)

Jeremiah 23:27-35.

 “Which think to cause my people to forget my name by their dreams which they tell every man to his neighbour, as their fathers have forgotten my name for Baal.” (verse 27)

“The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the LORD.” (verse 28)

 “Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces? Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, saith the LORD, that steal my words every one from his neighbour.”  (verses 29,30)

“Behold, I am against the prophets, saith the LORD, that use their tongues, and say, He saith.  Behold, I am against them that prophesy false dreams, saith the LORD, and do tell them, and cause my people to err by their lies, and by their lightness; yet I sent them not, nor commanded them:  therefore they shall not profit this people at all, saith the LORD.”  (verses 31,32)

And when this people, or the prophet, or a priest, shall ask thee, saying, What is the burden of the LORD? thou shalt then say unto them, What burden? I will even forsake you, saith the LORD.”  (verse 33)

 “And as for the prophet, and the priest, and the people, that shall say, The burden of the LORD, I will even punish that man and his house. Thus shall ye say every one to his neighbour, and every one to his brother, What hath the LORD answered? and, What hath the LORD spoken? (verses 34,35)

NOTE:  You will want to follow Comfort with the Forever Kingdom on .




Introduction: Testimony to Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, the Son of God.


1.   This message in honor of Jesus, Jesus, the sweetest name ever known, and in honor

of the greatest story ever told of Jesus and by the 4 evangelists of Matthew, Mark,

Luke, and John, is titled “The Testimony of the Evangelists”.

Admittedly it is borrowed from Simon Greenleaf, and apologists for Jesus and the

Bible, the former dean of the Harvard Law School. Dean Greenleaf who wrote in his

book by the same title, “The Testimony of the Evangelists” that the testimony of

Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John is such a witness to be able to stand up in any court of

law as a “prima facie” case. For you not familiar with law terms or debate terms, or

even the contending for the faith of apologetics, it is evidence provided for Jesus as the Son of God that is beyond any reasonable shadow of doubt.


2.   In other words, it is the best we could possibly do in both proclaiming and

contending for Jesus as the Son of God.

You need not fear that in this one message all the four of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and

John are to be covered as that would be like one professor of homiletics, the study of

how to preach said, “If you think that you do not have enough to say when you preach,

then chose for an outline this 3 subjects: One, the world, Two, the universe; and

Three, other things.”


3. No, this message relies on primarily the Gospel of John.

It was the last to be written to tell the story of Jesus; it was written by the Apostle

John known as the Apostle of love; and John is so gracious, evangelistic, and full of

natural apologetics and learning, even also homiletics as John with the 3 other

evangelists testimonies in front of him and which no doubt he preached from often as

pastor at Ephesus, carefully chose only 7 of the “many miracles and teachings of Jesus

which if they had been written everyone even the world itself could not contain the

books that should be written.”

I. The Text is John 1:14. “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”

1. This is a much better outline than the world, universe, and other things;

however it is one that you and I can easily remember; although a little more

challenging as it has 5 parts instead of 3, or the famous 4 parts and a poem of


2. The outline is: (1) The Word, Jesus, was made flesh; (2) Jesus dwelt

among us of humanity and the world through His life and the Bible; (3) We

beheld His glory; (4) the glory of the only begotten of the Father; and (5) Jesus

was full of grace and truth.

3. Have often thought about what if I had only one message to preach, it

would have to be on Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, the sweetest name I know; “the

name greater than any name at which every knee should bow and every tongue

confess that Jesus is Lord to the glory of God the Father”; Jesus, Jesus, Jesus,

Jesus, “I love to tell the story of Jesus and His glory”: Jesus, “We preach Christ

and Him crucified”; Jesus, “God forbid that I should glory save in the preaching

of the cross to whom the world is crucified unto me and I unto the world.” Yes,

that Jesus, the Son of God, the Word made flesh that dwelt for 31 years in the

world, and until crucified by the Jewish nation; however according to will and

plan of God.


 John 1:14.

II. Jesus, the Son of God was made flesh.

III. Jesus, God living among us of the world.

Jesus dwelt among the humanity of the world and continues to deal among us as

the Bible is spread across the globe. 1. The preaching and missionary work of those 4 evangelists and the 12 apostles and primary the apostle Paul born out of due time, the author of 14 books of the New Testament.

IV. Jesus, the manifested glory of God.

We, humanity of the world that He and God loved and loves, beheld the glory of the Son of God and of God Himself.

V. Jesus, The only begotten Son of God.

The angel, faithful messenger of God and sent by God, announced: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ

the Lord.” And a heavenly host backed up the angel that all of this was for the glory of

God– “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host

praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace,

good will toward men.” (Luke 2:10-14)

Conclusion: “Peace on earth, good will toward men”, (1)  the great God of

this universe made a special announcement that He cares for individual

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is

Christ the Lord.

 “And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace,good will toward men.” (Luke 2:10-14)

(2) Reconcile the messages as Jesus taught often, “I am not come to bring

peace on earth but a sword” with individual peace and good will from God and

heaven through Jesus, and not a peaceful earth that will always have a sword

and will increasingly have a sword until the final day of Megiddo.

(3). Notice how quickly the peace and good will passes so quickly from God so

loved the world to whosoever, the individual, that would believe would have the

peace and good will. Miss that and you miss the Christmas message.

What you can look for in the Testimony of the Evangelists, the complete

Christmas story if you would, is individual availability of peace for a special group

of believers. You should get that out of the most famous personal Christmas

message to the world, that “God so loved the world that He gave His only

begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have

everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

(4) John passes out the good will of God and the individual peace for individuals

in choosing carefully 7 messages in the book wrapped around 7 miracles of

Jesus, remembering that miracles were for a testimony that this Jesus doing the

miracles is and was the Son of God that could do anything and does do



The Gospel of John presents 7 miracle-signs for 7 messages of peace and

good will for the Individual believer.


1. WATER INTO WINE. John 2 as Jesus turns the water into wine showing

peace and good will for a family and guests, The miracle sign of turning the

water into wine is a message of peace for marriage and the family, Jesus cares.

2. HEALING OF NOBLEMAN’S SON. John 4 as Jesus heals the

Nobleman’s son from a distance illustrating the peace and good will that God can

provide from a distance today for individuals. Jesus cares for individuals and

their families to have both peace, life, and abundant life in the healing of the

Nobleman’s son.

3. MAN WITH INFIRMITY 38 YEARS HEALED. John 5 and Jesus healing of

the mans infirmity of 38 years continues to remind us that Jesus and God care

about the pain and suffering of humanity, and can and will intervene for the

believers prayer of faith, in the healing of the man with an infirmity 38 years,

Jesus shows care of the individual health and welfare, also patience.

4. FEEDING OF 5,000 WITH A FEW FISHES AND LITTLE BREAD. Also in John 5 with the miracle of feeding 5,000 Jesus shows care that believers have daily bread and clothing as He elaborated on in the Sermon on the Mount.

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good

tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.”


calming the waves and the seas, He provides peace to all disciples in all

circumstances as He has control of everything in this world.

A recent TV survey indicated the number 1 Health concerns of North Texas

in this order: depression, blood pressure and blood sugar.

6. HEALING OF THE MAN BLIND FROM BIRTH. John 9, Jesus to illustrate

that He is the “light of the world”, provided healing and peace to the man born

blind from birth.

7. LAZARUS BACK FROM THE DEAD. John 11, peace was provided for

believers, not mourners, by victory over the grave and death and toward eternal

life as the Resurrection and the Life.


NOTE:  Free download at .


Where we find ourselves this week in Bible on SunGrist.

Week 116 Free Downloads on The Topical Bible of , not so high on quantity but extremely high on significant Bible content. Each Christian serious about Bible study should have all 7 of these meaty Bible studies in their libraries, especially since it only cost you a few seconds to download in PDF.  Of course with the next week of 117 on with your help the quantity can be increased.

Most Downloaded Files

File                                         Hits

1 17

Robots.txt just means constituents copied 17 different pages, and you welcome to do the same thing, “Freely we have received, freely we give.”

2 12

The intense Bible devotions and study on Ephesians is introduced with

Paul’s Ephesians, an outstanding from God Himself outline of the Bible standard for faith and practice, Ephesians.

3 5

This is the third of the new series download for TOTAL INTEGRATION IN CHRIST of the book of Ephesians.  Join in!

4 2

Hope you are keeping up with the exciting Thru the Bible series, or Literal Bible with this fourth topic expanded of Son of God/Son of Man.  We must above all honor the name which is above every name of Jesus.

5  4

This is the fourth of eight volumes of the LEARN CHRIST COMMENTARIES on the subject of Christ, Paul, and the Falling Away.  It is a detailed look and study of the book of Hebrews.

6. 1

Since we are told in the scripture of Jude to “contend for the faith once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3), we are obligated as Christians and Bible believers to contend for a Literal Bible against the steady and persistent DTS graduates writing so called study Bibles with the Scofield notes and placing them in the SBC Lifeway book stores, then we also have Swaggart, an outstanding evangelist but not a Bible expositor deceiving with some of his notes many Bible believers throughout the world.

7.  1

Every now and then Christians must review the Testimony of the Evangelists (Apostles) to Jesus of Nazareth as the Christ, the Son of God and readily join with our own testimony.

Total 42             ENJOY!

Christian 101d: The Greatest Gain.

“Now godliness with contentment is great gain…And 
having food and clothing, with these we shall be 
content.”  (I Timothy 6:5-10)

1.  Try expanding your concept of GREED to include just
a “desire to be rich”!

“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a 
snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts…  (I 
Timothy 6:9b)

2.  Consider that you greedy ones are drowning
yourselves and this nation!

“… which drown men in destruction and perdition.”  (I 
Timothy 6:9b)

3.Consider that you can not love money that much
without the consequences in SIN and a lack of

“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil…”  (I 
Timothy 6:10a)

4.Greed on money and what money can buy in
investments and things will lead you away from both
Christian Faith and the American Democratic Faith!

“…for which {the love of money} some have strayed from 
the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves 
through with many sorrows.”  (I Timothy 6:10b)

5.  Indeed, if you have really found “godliness” it came
from outside yourself and from above, most generally
called the new birth and sanctification {yearly growth in
godliness}, so that you have the greatest gift, and from
God Himself through Christ, and the greatest gain.

6.  Consider the long-range COST!

“For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”  (Mark 8:36)

NOTE:  A great lie of Satan is that you are planning ahead when you accumulate a large investment in this world, a 401K, and possessions for security and establishment; yet all of this false long range planning and greed is not long range at all; for life is short and fragile–“It is a vapour that appeareth for a little while, and then vanisheth away”–like a candle that burns out, for the greater long range is that of eternity, and the greatest planning is for the eternal welfare of the soul.  What value do you place on your soul that will live forever, in comfort or torment.

Hebrews is the book of the Falling Away.

CHAPTER 2            Hebrews is the book of the Falling Away

In this volume 4 of the LEARN CHRIST commentaries, you will find a great deal from the book of Hebrews.  The book of Hebrews is many things.  It is a book that is no doubt a revised copy of Paul’s original address to the Hebrew synagogues where he attempted to tell them all that he learned about Christ and the way of salvation through Christ.  Paul also wanted the people of his own nation of Israel to know that most of the children of Israel rescued from Egyptian bondage did not enter the Promised Land of Israel, nor did they enter the eternal rest of God in heaven.  In short, they saw the works of God and the power and blessings of God, not only in the rescue from Egypt, but also during 40 years in the wilderness.  They came short of heaven and the promised land through “unbelief”.  This is the First Falling Away, and God through Paul in Hebrews wants us to know the characteristics, cause, and outcome of the First Falling Way in order that He can also warn us, as the book of Hebrews often does, to stay away from the Second Falling Away, the challenge of our generation if you remember the first chapter.

Related to the Falling Away of our generation is another prominent doctrine in the book of Hebrews, that of the Priesthood of Jesus Christ.  If we recognized that Jesus is on the right hand of God to ever make intercession for our sins, and we daily and for more than 40 years continued to take advantage of this benefit of the confession of sins, constantly “looking to Jesus as the author and finisher of ours sins,” this within itself would be sufficient, no doubt, to keep us from the Falling Away of our generation.  Second to this most prominent doctrine, often called and related especially in Hebrews, to the “doctrine of Christ” is the Baptist distinctive called “the priesthood of believers”.  I think long ago this doctrine among Southern Baptist has passed into oblivion.  The words of many famous Baptists statements of faith are no longer recognized, much less the meaning, so that when we come to the chapter on “The Priesthood of Believers”, we will look at Hebrews, other Scriptures, and Baptist Statements of Faith on the subject.

I want to warn you now that the second half of this volume will be on “doctrine”.  Perhaps in the first half, you will hear less of the word “doctrine” and more of the “teachings” of Jesus and the Bible, although the two words are almost synonymous in meaning.  The only rescue of yourself and your church, if it is already not too late, is for the sound doctrine or teachings of Jesus and the Bible.  Although we will introduce that doctrine initially in the simple and straightforward teachings of the book of Hebrews, centered around it being a book about (1) the Falling Away, (2) The Priesthood of Christ, and (3) The Priesthood of Believers, we will in faithfulness to Hebrews and the rest of the Bible want to use and look at the teachings of the Bible centered around the word “doctrine”.  Our prime problem with “doctrine”, is that we have not come to see doctrine as something we live as well as something we believe in our mind, especially is the true about the doctrine of Christ which provides salvation to us all.

2-1:  The Falling Away in the book of Hebrews.

Previously we looked at the fact and characteristics of the Falling Away from Jesus in Matthew 24 and from the Apostle Paul in II Thessalonians. Also we briefly mentioned the Falling Away as the time of intolerance toward sound doctrine of II Timothy 3:3-5.  This is by no means the extent of Bible teachings on the Falling Away.  In this section and chapter, we will begin a more exhaustive study and explanation, hopefully in all cases based on Scripture, from the book of Hebrews.  I believe we can know the truth. I believe we can know sound doctrine.  I believe Jesus when He said, “If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine if it be of God.”  We can come up with many excuses as the world does about obstacles to knowing the truth, or we can count on the simple teaching of Jesus that we can know the truth.  Generally, most of the excuses to shun the Bible in the name of the truth can not be known center around scholars and denominations who differ on interpretations.  Well, there is “no private interpretation; but holy men of God spake {or wrote} as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.  Most scholars do not understand or properly interpret Scripture for four Biblical reasons:  (1) the natural man can not understand the things of the Spirit of God; (2) the things of the Bible are spiritually discerned, require help of the Holy Spirt, and without this assistance of the Holy Spirit, truth can not be learned and known; (3) God has chosen many simple things of the world to confuse the wise like simple words of truth and the Bible; and (4) Not many wise, noble, or scholarly are called by God.  Once they claim to be a scholar as many with their PhD’s do, it is tantamount to eliminating themselves among those that God has called and blessed with truth.  It is from those same scholars, out of touch as much with God, Christ, and the truth of the Bible, as living in their ivory towers, that confusions about the truth of the Bible.  For example, a few years ago such a group of scholars honesty collectively in a single location from all over the globe to vote on whether Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, as if their collective scholastic votes could in any way determine the real doctrine of Christ in the Bible.  Just the nerve of such scholarship, to think that in any way it would matter to God or really to most of God’s people the direction in which their collective ignorance of spiritual matters went.  The vote is the tool of the majority, of the world, and of the American Democratic Faith.  The vote in churches is often the tool of Satan to encourage anarchy in church government as the authority of the pastor and Christ are subverted.  The vote is by the many who go the way of destruction, the broad way, and the opposite of the few, who go the narrow and unpopular way that leads to life eternal.  Even as Christ came to primarily preach the Gospel to the poor, so also today the recipients of the gospel are among the poor, not among the wise and scholarly and rich.  Get use to it, it is Bible.

  1. The Primary Falling Away Teaching Section of the book of Hebrews is found in Hebrews 3:1 through 4:11.

You know how this definition by God Himself of the First Falling Away truly gets underway in the words,

“Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, {God in His Word here, calls the First Falling Away a “rebellion”, and we would expect something similar in the Falling Away of our generation.} when your fathers tested Me, tried Me, and saw My works forty years.”  (Hebrews 3:7-9}

I hope you can hear the Word of God in these words “tested Me, tried Me, and saw My works forty years.”  Yes, that is God speaking.  You hear and see God speaking, and you see something of the patience of God toward those often called His children. {We will want to discuss later the meaning of children of God as used throughout the Bible, and allow Paul to throw a lot of light on the meaning from the book of Romans.}

  1. The Falling Away is a rebellion against God Himself, against the leadership of God, and a rebellion against the leadership that God has appointed over His people such as apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers.  As we will study in the Hebrew accounts and of the Old Testament history of the Falling Away in the wilderness, it was a rebellion against the leadership of God through Moses and Aaron.  Just like today in churches, the people knew best in the church in the wilderness.  They also, like today, thought that the majority who wanted to turn back to Egypt knew best, and that it was foolhardy to go forward into the Promised Land.  Of course, it was not exactly this simple as there were other leaders among the children of Israel, leaders appointed by Moses over tens, hundreds, and thousands; and these leaders also lead the people in rebellion.  We find that also today in our churches as other leaders lead the people in rebellion against the appointed of God.  What I would call the very common anarchy in church government seen Convention wide in rural and urban churches, where music, youth, and education leaders lead the people in rebellion today, and in the present Falling Away, would be called Rebellion in the first Falling Away. Those church members and temporal leaders in churches who label such rebellion as right because of a vote of the majority have learned little from the Bible.  Those church members also confuse the American Democratic Faith of the fundamentalists with the Faith and practice of the Bible.  It was Christ who Ascended to the right hand of God the Father then gave gifts to men–the gifts of Prophets, Apostles, Evangelists, pastors and teachers–for the benefit of the church.  For those who rebel and lead in rebellion and even participate in the rebellion, it is the same as denying the gifts that Christ has given to pastors and teachers.  It is covetousness in that it is an attempt to steal those gifts for themselves.  And do you think that God is going to honor any church or any majority group of the church which would covet and steal those important gifts.  Even as the children of God in wilderness were after 40 years of patience on the part of God and 40 years of unbelief and rebellion on the part of the majority of the people were not allowed to receive the blessings of the land and eternal rest, even so–and that is what the book of Hebrews and the rest of the Bible is going to tell us–will not be allowed church blessings in their homeland, nor eternity in heaven.

Continuing with the Hebrews 3:1 through 4:11 passage:

“Therefore I was angry {yes this is God, and yes God got angry after His patience wore out in 40 years} with that generation, {There is a majority of the whole generation of the people of God with whom God was angry. It is jumping ahead but we know from the history in the Old Testament that only a minority of children 20 years of age and younger, and Joshua, and Caleb, were allowed a future in the Promised Land and eternity.}  and said, (yes, this is God talking to the Trinity again} ‘They always go astray in their heart, and they have not known My ways.’  So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.’”  (Hebrews 3:10,11)

(1).  This is a quote from Psalm 95:7-11 with God Himself speaking through the Prophet David.

(2).  God did get mad at the majority of a whole generation except the children under 20 and the two spies, Caleb and Joshua, who gave a minority report that the Promised Land could be taken.

(3).  After 40 years of providing food, water, and miracles and watching the people in the wilderness, God decided based on their behavior of 40 years and what He could see in their hearts that “they always go astray in their hearts.”

(4). In fact, God decided that these same people had never known the ways of God in the first place.  Later in the passage we will come to Hebrews 3:14, what I think of as the very gist of the book of Hebrews, and what is the resolution we must make later between the Security of the Believer and the Falling Away:

“For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end….”  (Hebrews 3:14)

Notice how carefully the wording is chosen such that it does not talk about Christians.  What it talks about is “partakers of Christ”.  These are believers that have gone all the way in the four kinds of sown seed as expressed by Christ, the only kind was the seed that brought forth much fruit.  Bluntly this is stated many ways in the book of Hebrews.  I don’t think we appreciate how blunt it can be.  And what it is saying is that the real believers, the real children of God, or whatever phrase from the Bible you chose to use, are those that make it to the end and go into the promised land.  It is horrible to have to say, but realistic, that most of the children of Israel in the wilderness were not true partakers, and most of the church members in our churches today may not be true partakers.  As we go along in Hebrews, we will find the characteristics of the partakers that make it all the way, and enumerate them; and we will find the characteristics of the participants in the Falling Away and enumerate them also.

You noticed that we started with an exegesis of 3:7, temporarily skipping the first six verses.  Verse one is interesting in that it addresses the “holy brethren” and refers to them as “partakers of the heavenly calling” in spite of the fact that later in 3:14 he has to divide some of them into “partakers of Christ” and some into those who will not hold fast to the end with what they started at the beginning.  Verse one always starts with asking the reader to consider Christ Jesus as the Apostle and High Priest of “our confession.”  I also spoke earlier of the relationship between the Falling Away and the Priesthood of Christ.  In fact, we would have to say that the book of Hebrews is more on the Priesthood of Christ, secondly on the Falling Away and on the Priesthood of Believers.  Verses 3:2-6 elaborate on the Priesthood of Christ:  (1) a faithful priest to the God that appointed Him; in other words, Christ was obedient even unto death and never rebellious; (2) Jesus was faithful like Moses; (3) Even as the builder of the house has more honor than the house itself, so Jesus is worthy of more honor than Moses; (4) While every house is built by someone, God is the owner of all things, and God has made Christ His Son head of the house of the church.

I promised to save at all the warnings against Falling Away for a later section; but as a book about the Falling Away, I want you to notice how often they are encountered in Hebrews.  It would be easy to overlook in reading; and my how casually, seemingly, does Paul and the Spirit of God through Paul remind us how easy it would be to fall away.  For example here in 3:6, “whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.”  (Hebrews 3:6)

Okay, what more can we do for the Hebrews 3:1 to 4:11 passage.  Preliminary to a conclusion on this passage, I will for continuity sake mention the fact that the same chapter 3 passage that started with Jesus as the High Priest ends in 4:15-16 with facts about Jesus as the High Priest; and that there are other cautions to church members about Falling Away in 4:14–”let us hold fast our confession, in 4:11–”lest anyone fall like the example of disobedience in the wilderness, and in 4:1–to fear that you might come short of the promise of eternal rest offered to today’s believers.  However our primary thrust in Bible study now is the Falling Away and we come to another section in the passage, Hebrews 3:16-19, where it describes exactly “who” rebelled.  I will paraphrase the passage.  Who was it that heard and rebelled? It was all who came out of Egypt.  It was all who were led by Moses.  That pretty well describes all of the so-called children of Israel except it leaves out which will be amplified later, the children under 20 years of age.  And another “who” asks:  with whom was God angry?  These are sort of like rhetorical questions in that Paul does not wish anyone to see what truly happened to the vast majority of the Hebrews.  And here we find that God was angry with them for the full 40 years.  His patience was shown in that He did not make a judgment call on them as far as their eternal existence until the 40 years was up.  God was angry with those who sinned, and with those whose carcasses fell in the wilderness.  A third description of the “who” comes next:  who did God swear that they would not enter His rest, well, you guessed it the same children who did not obey.  And the giant conclusion about the who’s in that why could they not enter God’s rest, the answer being “because of unbelief.”

I think that Jesus discouraged often attempts on the part of disciples to separate the sheep from the goats, the partakers of Christ from the not partakers of Christ, believers from the evil hearts of unbelief in the churches, because He knew that Paul would deal so thoroughly with the subject in Hebrews and other books.

  1. The Falling Away passage in Hebrews 8:7-13 wherein God makes two statements about the Falling Away:  God found fault with the house of Israel, and God “disregarded” those that He took by the hand to lead out of the land of Egypt.  Once again, at the beginning of Hebrews, 8:1-6, mention is made of Jesus as the High Priest, this time as the Minister of the Sanctuary and of the “true tabernacle”; and is appendixed in 9:11-28 with more of Jesus as the High Priest.

“Because finding fault with them, He says:  ‘Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah–not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the LORD.”  (Hebrews 8:7-9)

(1).  God later in the wilderness found fault with the vast majority of the house of Israel that He took by the hand to lead out of Egypt.

(2).  God promised new hope in the Promised Land with a new covenant that He would make with the house of Israel.

(3).  This new covenant would be different from the old covenant that God made with the forefathers when He lead them out of Egypt.

(4).  The vast majority of the people did not keep {“continue in”} the old covenant that God made with them.  This covenant was made in the Ten Commandments, three months out of Egypt and at Sinai.

“And Moses went up unto God, and the LORD called unto him out of the mountain, saying, Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel; ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you in eagle’s wings, and brought you unto myself.  Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, {God’s demands in the covenant to obey His voice as spoken in the Ten Commandments} and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: {God’s promises in the covenant} for all the earth is mine:  and ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.”  (Exodus 19:3-6)

(5).  God disregarded the vast majority of the people rescued from Egypt; and brother to be “disregarded” by the God of heaven, the maker of the Universe and history, the keeper of eternal rest through Christ, is the ultimate in being shunned.

2-2:  Warnings to Church members of Our Generation Not to Fall Away.

Warning or Cautions for other generations not to Fall Away start early and continue to the end in the book of Hebrews.

  1. Warning and Caution #1 in Hebrews 2:1-4, a warning not to neglect the great salvation. It starts mildly in verse one with the caution to pay attention to what you have heard and are hearing, “lest we drift away.”  Certainly drifting away from what we have heard is the beginning of the Falling Away.
  2. Warning or Caution #2 in Hebrews 3:5 where we are only the house, later to be developed in Hebrews as the true tabernacle of God and later as the assembly or church of the Firstborn, if we hold fast the confidence and rejoicing of the hope firm to the end. {Note:  we might start making a chart here of the characteristics of the partakers of Christ versus those that fall away.  The two characteristics of partakers here would be hold fast the confidence to the end, and rejoicing firmly in the hope to the end, and naturally of those that fall away the opposite, let go of the faith and stop rejoicing in the hope of the calling of Christ.
  3. Warning or Caution #3 in Hebrews 3:8 not to “harden your hearts as in the rebellion”. This states that it is possible to harden your heart, and that it is possible to rebel as the children of Israel did.  The characteristic of a partaker of Christ would be keep a soft, warm heart whereas those that fall by the wayside have a hardened heart.  Lest we forget these three characteristics, a table is started below.
  4. Warning or Caution #4 in Hebrews 3:12, unmissably a warning in that it starts with the words “Beware, brethren…” and continues to warn against an “evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God.” Notice here, it is from the living God; for many in the wilderness did, and can today, not depart from “gods” which are not really living.  The characteristics of partakers would be a good heart of belief which does not depart from the living God and the fallen the opposite.
  5. Warning or Caution #5 in Hebrews 3:13 that it is possible to be hardened through the “deceitfulness of sin” so that Christ believers or partakers are to “exhort one another daily” if possible.
  6. Warning or Caution # 6 in Hebrews 3:14 where we are become partakers of Christ only if we hold fast the beginning of our confidence or faith to the end. The Falling Away would be to drop the confidence some where along the line.

{NOTE:  do you have any more doubts that the book of Hebrews is about the Falling Away, and do you wonder how you missed it in your original readings.}

warnings table_001

  1. Warning or Caution # 7 in Hebrews 3:15 not to harden your hearts as in the rebellion. The Fallen would be those who rebel, the partakers would be those who obey.
  2. Warning or Caution #8 in Hebrews 4:1 where having also received a promise from God of rest, let us fear that we will come short of the promise of entering eternal rest.
  3. Warning or Caution #9 in Hebrews 4:2 that the gospel was preached to the house of Israel as well as to us, but it did not have the internal mixture of faith and therefore did not eternally profit Israel.

  1. Warning or Caution #10 in Hebrews 4:7 that there is a point of no return in the hearing of the voice of God and of a responsive heart. That point of no return is called “Today” and is different for each person, up to a certain extent.  There seems to be a group or social aspect to it in that all in the wilderness after 40 years were rejected.  The latest word of Hebrews, so far, was that they were disregarded because they did not keep the covenant made with God at Sinai, most of which was the 10 commandments.  Disregarded would be sort of like cast aside or forgotten, no longer of any value to God, and what a sad state of affairs.  Often the Falling Away group before and after the decision by God is called house. The house may be a tribe, a clan, or an assembly such as a church.  How sad to think that a whole church can be discarded by God as without value.  And it can happen today.  The message of Hebrews is that tomorrow is too late.  Do you think numbers mean any thing to God when they are rebellious?  He destroyed 120,000 of the Hebrew children in one day in the wilderness; He destroyed the whole earth of people during the Flood; He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their wickedness; and the plan on the Day of the LORD is to again destroy all of the earth and the heavens.  And if you believe that God is in control with all things continuing to consist through Christ, and even though the final destruction on this earth is on automatic control, then God in the Tsunami destroyed approximately 200,000 people.  Why can this not also be for wickedness since almost all on this earth are wicked and have not kept God’s covenant in the 10 commandments?  It is only by the grace of God that we all were not destroyed during the recent Indonesian Tsunami.  It is only by the grace of God that the total destruction of the universe did not happen today, because tomorrow is too late.  God would be just in doing it tomorrow in light of the wickedness, immorality, and evil hearts of unbelief.  What crushes God most is the evil heart of unbelief.  The consistent, always straying for His plan and will.  The incessant no knowing His way.
  2. Warning or Caution #11 in Hebrews 4:11 not to fall as the example of disobedience in the wilderness which prohibits a entering into the eternal rest of God. Many say to me, you are never going to retire.  Well, my real retirement is my eternal rest in heaven where I cease from this earth’s boot camp, from my wanderings in the wilderness to an eternal home.  In the mean time I seek to “work out my own salvation with fear and trembling.” You see, God really owes us nothing for any reason except through Christ, and except as we are partakers of Christ.  Why does every word which proceeds out of the mouth of God give us this example of the Falling Away? The answer is simple:  it is exactly that, an example of what not to do.  It for 40 years was rebellion; it was an evil heart of unbelief; it was disobedience to the leadership of God through Moses; and it was constant violation of the Ten Commandments.  We are not talking about one or two times, but for 40 years; and in the next chapter we will look at “The History of the First Falling Away” from the Old Testament.  Even as Pastor James in the book of James wrote that Scriptures, and the stories of the men in them like Job and Elijah, are given to us for examples, so also the massive Falling Away of the wilderness rebellion is given to us as an example of the Falling Way that must and will happen before the Second Coming.  Since The collective Falling Away is inevitable, what can we do:  we can individually keep from being a victim or a participant in the Falling Away.  We can be like the children under 20, or like Caleb who had the “can-do” attitude that we can do what God commanded us; or we can be like Joshua who took the mantle of leadership from Moses and led the people into the Promised Land.
  3. Warning #12 in Hebrews 4:12,13 where every word that has proceeded out of the mouth of God and through the Prophets and Apostles, alias recorded in the Bible, is dynamically alive. It cuts right into the quick of every individual to the fine point of dividing the soul and the spirit; the Bible is actually a living entity that actively discerns the thought and intents of the heart.  We must give account to every action and thought based on those words, and every account and thought is daily hacked before God.  Nothing is hidden:  all is visible to God.warnings table_002

{Note:  Some of the warnings are more on the positive side as encouragements, and they center around what Jesus has done for us and is doing for us as High Priest so that we will come to them in another chapter on “Jesus, Our Great High Priest”.  Is it short of gullible to think that the very Son of God, the Christ present at Creation as the mediating Cause, the Jesus Christ who died on the cross for the sins of the world can be called by us as “Our Great High Priest”.  No, that is the “priesthood of believers”.  Lets we become far too negative and weary, Hebrews 4:14 is more on the positive side in terms of Jesus our Great High Priest.}

“Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.  For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.  Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”  (Hebrews 4:14-16)

We don’t have to fall or fail.  Consider this preliminary look at some of the benefits of Jesus as our High Priest as a preview of things to come.

  1. Our Great High Priest, Jesus the Son of God, has passed from a life here on earth to heaven;
  2. His passing from earth to heaven is an example of success that is encouragement for us “to hold fast our original confession;
  3. He went through on earth all the temptations that we go through–did it without sin–and can now at the right hand of God the Father both sympathize with our plight and make intercession to God the Father for our sins;
  4. We are to come “boldly” to the throne of grace in prayer, and we can find in the time of need both grace and mercy.}
  5. Warning #13 in Hebrews 5:11 that we like those to whom Hebrews by originally written may “become dull of hearing” so that we do not receive the “much of say” of Hebrews, or the rest of the Bible, so that we can not understand “what is hard to explain”. How frustrating it must have been for Paul, having received all that information for the Ascended Christ in Arabia after his conversion, then having retreated to Tarsus for seven years where he re-read all the Old Testament, recording on manuscripts all the Old Testament quotes to include in his writing of 14 New Testament books; and to think about the unreceptive recipients dullness in hearing.  I think you know about the famous II Timothy 3:3-5 passage about the Falling Away where it happens as church members “will not endure sound doctrine”, and out of itching ears based on what they want, they seek out teachers of itching ears to comfort their ears, teachers and preachers that will encourage them as they turn away from the truth and turn into fables.  Well, here in Hebrews 5:11 is the preliminary step to itching ears. Itching ears start with dullness of hearing.  Catch it right now:  do not be dull of hearing on the Words of God.  Listen and heed what is in the Bible, and let the Bible say what it wants to say.  What is your motivation?  Simple, it is the eternal rest of God!  That is what is at stake, eternity!
  6. Warning #14 in Hebrews 5:12 where Paul, having been in all the churches, sees in his mind’s eye the church members; and reminds them that by this amount of time in their Christ life {hopefully it is more like 20 years than the 40 of the Falling Away, and I do think this is more preventive in Bible instruction than corrective} they should be teachers. However, rather than being able to teach the Bible, someone must go back over with them “the first principles of the oracles of God”.  They still in their Christ life need more milk, like a baby, instead of meat like a mature partaker of the nature of Christ. {In the table, we will show in a blue color the point of which we have passed from the characteristics of the Falling Away into the Preventive Measures such as to be Bible teachers.}

{Note:  While we are at this point in Hebrews, 5:12-6:3, I would like to say a few preliminary things about “doctrine” before we come to the second half of this commentary.  It will be sort of like taking the example of Paul in the Word of God “to lay again the first principles of the oracles of God.”  That is really what basic doctrines are, the first principles of every word that has proceeded out of the mouth of God. They are to be heard, learned, and heeded in life.  Doctrine or teachings of the Bible–the two words are almost synonymous–are alive to the extent that they are like milk or meat to the spiritual body like food is to the physical body.  Remember Jesus reminded us at the same time He did Satan that “man shall not live by bread only, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.”  Yesterday on television I heard part of an interview with Billy Graham, quite aged and raged by Parkinson’s, telling that if he had it to do over again he would study the Word more. Furthermore the passage in Hebrews 5:14 makes a close relationship between doctrine and the life style ability to discern between good and evil.  Imagine that, the extent in your Christ life to which you have the ability to tell the difference of what is really good and what is really evil, is determined by the level of Bible teachings, milk or meat, that go into your spiritual body.

Another thing that I would like to point out from the 5:12-6:3 passage is that there are “elementary principles of Christ” (6:1) such as repentance from dead works, faith toward God, baptisms, laying on of hands, resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgement; and then there are the more advanced doctrines of perfection.  You will find the second half of this book deals with both the (1) first principles and (2) advanced doctrines of perfection.  We are very fortunate to have these lists; and as much as possible I have also tried to deal with those “first principles” in my recently distributed book, written for my kids and grandkids, SOME SOUNDS OF A SOUND FAITH.}


I hope you have noticed the transition here in chapter 5 and 6.  We have passed from the example and characteristics of the Falling Away into the more encouraging and preventive measures to stay away from the Falling Away, starting more and more to take our minds and hearts off our own problems, focusing on Jesus our Great High Priest with recognition of the grace and mercy available, also the forgiveness of sins as One no less than our Great High Priest Himself is at the right hand of God daily and hourly to make intercession for our sins; and then in the word of the Bible “being careful for nothing {nothing is too small or large} but by prayer and supplication let our requests be made known to God and the peace which passeth all understanding shall keep our hearts and minds.”

Hebrews 6:3 above is a positive affirmation that this is what we are going to do, God willing.

  1. Warning #15 in Hebrews 6:4-8 has scared a lot of people, leading groups as large as the Methodists to believe in what they call “falling from grace”. However, it is really saying the opposite:  even as it is impossible for you to crucify a second time for yourself the Son of God–remember how Scripture tells us that “we are crucified with Christ”–it is impossible to first be (1) enlightened, (2) to taste the heavenly gift, (3) be a partaker of the Holy Spirit, (4) to taste the good Word of God, (5) to taste the powers of the age to come; and then to fall away.  In other words, what we have been saying all along is that all the Falling Away does is to separate the real partakers of Christ from the superficial partakers of Christ.

And in Hebrews 6:7,8 the Apostle Paul with the analogy of the rain and fruitful herbs is reminding us of the parable of the seed and sower that Jesus taught.  Three out of four kinds of seed spread by the Word of God, from Jesus or any preacher, do not permanently bear fruit.  It takes time to tell which of the seed will be choked out by the cares of the world, and the deceitfulness of sin, which seed is planted on shallow soil or rocky, and so on.  But if you are worried about what the seed planted in your hear and mind has done, that is a good sign.  You can turn it around at any point as long as it is still called today.  Your High Priest is there and available; the meat of the word is available; the challenge of the high calling of Jesus as the author and finisher of our faith is available; and this also we will do, God willing!

  1. Warning #16 in Hebrews 6:9-12 where we truly become optimistic about some church members whom Paul has heard about, no doubt from Timothy, Titus, or one of the many other messengers going back to Paul. We hear of “beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you”; we hear of “things that accompany {or go with} salvation”; and we hear of “God will not forget your work and labor of love, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister”. And the real preventive warning is this:  that each one of you show that same diligence above, recorded of some we hear about, all the way “to the full assurance of hope until the end.  Further “do not become sluggish.  “Imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises”.  (Hebrews 6:12)
  2. Preventive Warning #17 and encouragement and comfort in Hebrews 6:13-20 where we learn how impossible it is for God to lie, where we have the security of the “anchor to our soul”, it is our HOPE, both secure and steadfast. Jesus has entered the Presence behind the vail of the eternal temple: Jesus is our forerunner as such of what we expectantly hope to do as our High Priest forever after the likeness of Melchizedek. {And as your would imagine from this point on Hebrews gets into the major theme of the Great High Priest.  However we will quickly continue to list the sprinklings of Warnings, which have more turned to encouragement and comfort in the book of Hebrews.}
  3. Encouragement #18 in Hebrews 7:19 where through the Priesthood of Jesus which allows our own priesthood of believers, “we draw near to God” by way of the better hope in the Priesthood of Jesus than was the hope in the law at Mount Sinai. Yes, we have a better chance than those who stood at Mount Sinai; and lest you think God is impartial, consider than during the three days in the tomb Jesus went to the intermediary state of Hades to preach the Gospel to all those same people of Old Testament times.
  4. Encouragement #19 in Hebrews 7:25 where our Priest Jesus is able to “save to the uttermost”–and that is all we need, salvation to the uttermost–those who come to God through that Priest. {Sorry I can not contain sharing now what 7:26 tells us about the characteristics of this High Priest: (1) holy, (2) harmless, (3) undefiled, (4) separate from sinners, (5) now become higher than the heavens, (6) does not need to daily offer sacrifices for His own sins and those of the people, He did it once for all on Calvary. (not for His own sins as He was without sins, but once for all for all the sins of the world)   Wow, as we preachers would say at Ouachita, “that will preach”.  You will see this again as we have more to say in a chapter on the Priesthood of Christ.}
  5. Encouragement #20 in Hebrews 8:10-13 of the new covenant which can prevent an individual Falling Away based on both the Priesthood of Jesus and the Priesthood of Believers. However, I want to warn you before you read that passage below that you based on the teachings of Romans are part of the new “house of Israel”.  Like Paul wrote in Romans “not Israel is of the house of Israel”.  The new Jew, according to Romans, became both Jews and Gentiles; in fact, during the Fulness of Gentiles time which we are still in but about the see the end of it, the house of Israel is more Gentiles than Jews.

“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD:  I will put my laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.  {now get ready for the Priesthood of Believers, what you just read was the fact of the new birth, what Jesus referred to in John 14 as God and Him coming to make residence in the individual heart} NONE OF THEM SHALL TEACH HIS NEIGHBOR, AND NONE HIS BROTHER, SAYING, ‘KNOW THE LORD,’ FOR ALL SHALL KNOW ME, FROM THE LEAST OF THEM TO THE GREATEST OF THEM.  For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.’”  (Hebrews 8:10-12)

Also recall that while most of the house of Israel in the First Century and beyond rejected Jesus as their Great High Priest, the remnant was very large and significant of people like Peter, and Paul, Matthew, and so with the Apostles, many churches in the First Century and beyond; although we still wait for something to happen in the nation of Israel as the rapidly approach end of the Fulness of Gentiles happens.  Perhaps there is validity to those like B. H. Carroll who believe at the same time there comes to hopelessness of the Battle of Armageddon as the camp of the saints retreats around Jerusalem, and before Christ intervenes to destroy the Man of Sin and his army, then 144,000 Jews will be saved in one day.  Of course, it could happen in less than one day.

{We will conclude our developments of the warnings and encouragement in Hebrews here, although there are more in the second half of the book into which we have already intruded for the sake of turning despair into hope.  It is true that the Falling Away of our generation is inevitable.  As surely as the reality of the Second Coming is the preliminary reality of the Falling; but each individual does not have to participate. Increasing individual Christians, as I emphasize in my volume 3 commentary, “Christ for Individuals”, must break from the dominant downward trend in churches and denomination, to establish a personal relationship and priesthood of believers relationship with God through Christ, in prayer and Bible, that descends the dominant trend of the next few years.

Also you will note in the drastic change at Hebrews 6:3 of what we will do in the rest of our study of Hebrews.  Increasingly it becomes more about Advanced Doctrine, about the Priesthood of Christ, and about the Priesthood of Believers.  Don’t be mistaken this is exciting teachings about Christ and our benefits in Christ.  The above will sort of be our outline of the commentary to follow, with the exception of the next chapter where we must consider from the Old Testament the history of the Falling Away, supplemented with explanations from other parts of the New Testament, in order to better understand it.  A lot of words have been utilized from God in the Bible to explain what happened to a whole nation that God called out of Egypt to bless and preserve as His own, with the exception of a few, that He chose to bless and the covenant failed:  words like rebellion, falling away, disregarded, disobedience; and I think we all have become curious to know the details of exactly what happened in those 40 years in the wilderness.  For one thing as Pastor James says in the book of James, they are our examples to make sure in this case that we do not the same thing.}

2-3:  A Summary of The Table of this Chapter.

To summarize the Table that developed in this chapter on Partakers in Christ versus Participants in the Falling Away is to also summarize the whole chapter. You may want to refer back to page 26 and 27 where the Table is shown. Remember this was the 20 warnings, later turned into encouragements, that we found in the first 8 chapters of Hebrews.  {Since this is 8 out of the 13 chapters in Hebrews, you have made a good beginning on what Hebrews is all about.  And temporarily in the next chapter we will go from what is quoted in Hebrews to the source itself in the Old Testament history, and we will briefly look at some of the other references in the New Testament to the Falling Away.  Mainly we will take the places in the New Testament where it is quoted about the disobedience and rebellion events from the Old Testament to get how the New Testament explains those quotes.


The Bible as the Standard for faith and practice.

It is the Word of God, divine in

origin, absolute in authority,

sufficient in message, high

fidelity in communications with

the hermeneutics of the ASPI,

dynamically alive, and

self-interpretative with the ASPI

version (I Peter 1:21)

In spite of the obvious distortions of the Falling Away from the Bible of traditional denominations, sometimes even worse from new non-denominations groups that cater to the whims of the world, we can sometimes miss their traditions of the past where the Bible in many statements of faith was listed as “the sole criterion of faith and practice”.  “Listen to what the Spirit says today thru me”, taking the quote of Isaiah and departing into all kinds of isogesis (reading meaning into the Bible, instead of exegesis which is reading the meaning out}, is a classic example of the bad Bible hermeneutics {just rules in the Bible for proper understanding} of:  (1) failure to get verses and chapters and books of the Bible in the total context of the Bible {quite often the work of amateurs in the Bible with few years of Bible experience and study}; (2) the victims of Special Revelation that have the gall, many each year, to think in the Holy Zinger words of I Corinthians 14 that either the “Word of God came out of them, or the Word came to them only”, normally the same people of the rest of I Corinthians 14 which fail to heed Paul on Bible to speak only known tongues in public worship, reserving unknown tongues for private devotionals, and also who consider they alone with their ministry and church must slight and ignore other Christians, missionaries, and missions across the world as if they are nothing, also practicing “sheep-stealing” where other men have labored for years; and (3) do not compare scripture with scripture as advised by Paul, preferring some kind of hunt and peck system that keeps them limited to about 300 verses of the Bible {See the recommended “All Scripture Approach and Movement”.}

Above is another classic example, there is nothing new under the sun and we just keep each generation repeating the same follies of Bible interpretation, one of taking one verse out of context and as preacher boys said while learning homiletics and hermeneutics, “going every  where preaching”.  However it is no joke, for this is the way new denominations and divisions in Christianity are started.  It is what Bernard Ramm in Christian Bible hermeneutics would call “special revelations” where some strive to add to the message of the Bible.

This time of the year as the nuts and weirdos come out of the woodwork and strive to increase their self-serving thrusts of the whole year, we must express in Christianity and in the real body of Christ presently on earth our appreciation for the STANDARD, the Bible, for all to believe and practice.  Also to express amazement for the wisdom and grace of God to take over 7,000 years and 40 authors from the human side to give us a Book that is a light for our path and a guide for life and living.

Even as “a little leaven leaveneth the whole loaf”, so is the bad influence of one gone astray with tangents, diversions, and sin centered around Scripture, and sometimes they are even “that sort” of II Timothy that are to be avoided, at all cost, by other Christians.


Christianity 101b: Practical Christian Apologetics, “Come and See” by Jesus.

“Come and See”, The Gospel of John

“Come and See” is the invitation that Jesus gave to His first disciples, the Apostle John being one of them

‘Come and See” is the invitation that Jesus gives to people today. Not the same way as originally recorded at the beginning of the Gospel of John. However, the way is later in John: it is through the Other Jesus, the Comforter, the “alter ego” of Jesus, in other words the Spirit of Christ or the Holy Spirit who came to take the place of Jesus on earth when He ascended back to the right hand of the Father.

“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world [the American Conscience] cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him, but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you and shall be in you.” (John 14:16, 17)

“Come and See” is the essential gist of the Gospel of John. “Come and See” what Jesus did, what Jesus taught, and the life and death of Jesus.

“And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: but these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing ye might have life through his name.” (John 20:30,31) Here is where you begin to see the uniqueness of the Gospel of John as compared to the other Gospels.

  1. The “signs”. John carefully chose seven of the miracles and Jesus performed from the many, and selected events and teachings closely related to those seven miracles to give the focus of John.
  2. These Seven Miracles were done in the presence of the disciples. The work of Christ by no means was done in secret. The personal experience of “come and see” is the tone throughout the book.
  3. These are written. There was the need for a written record of what John and the other disciples had seen and heard for themselves. There was the need to wrap up the revelations of the New Testament.
  4. The goal was simple, evangelism: that men might believe that this Jesus of Nazareth whom they followed was indeed the Promised Messiah or Christ of the Old Testament, and that He was indeed the very, only Son of God.
  5. It was evangelism that lead to “life”—”that believing ye might have life through his name.
  • 33-1: John the Baptist

Since the Apostle John does not use his own name in the book of John, you know that the “John” referenced in the first chapters is John the Baptist. This is the John who came to prepare the way for Christ. The same John that was prophesied in Isaiah as “the voice crying in the wilderness”. Also, in Malachi he is referred to as the new Elijah, because he came in the spirit and power of Elijah.

“The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, after me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.” (John 1 :29. 31)

  1. If again we replace in the text “American Conscience” for “world”, we have the encouragement that no matter what shape the collective American Conscience is in or the individual American conscience, Christ came to take away the sin of the American Conscience.
  2. By referring to Jesus as the “Lamb of God”, a term of sacrifice from the Old Testament, John the Baptist was not only preparing the nation of Israel to listen to Jesus but also preparing them for His death on the cross.
  3. The Apostle John uses the quote from John the Baptist about “he was before me” to keep going with the theme of the “Word” who was with God from the beginning. Naturally, as John the Baptist admitted Christ would be preferred before him, He existed before him.


Evangelism is first a matter of learning. Jesus did not ask the first disciples to believe immediately, but rather to come and live with him to see and learn.

Jesus did not first say, “Believe”, he said “Come and See”. Jesus did not first say, “Repent”, He rather said “come and see”; first it was not “be baptized”, but “come and see”. First things and first, and the priority is to learn Jesus before believing, repenting, and being baptized. Before working for Christ is believing, and before believing is coming to Jesus to learn about Him. These words recorded in John 1 were to two disciples that followed John the Baptist until that John identified Jesus as the Lamb of God, then when they expressed interest in Jesus, He told them to “come and see.” One of these two disciples were Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter. Andrew found his own brother and said to him:

“We have found the Messias, which is being interpreted, the Christ.” (John 1:41)
NOTE: You see that Andrew as many others in his generation were looking for the promised Messiah, promised in the Old Testament. In the next chapter of this book we will look at some of those prophetic expectations that were created in the minds of Old Testament readers by the many Old Testament prophecies about the “Christ”

“And he brought him to Jesus…” Still the greatest thing any brother or friend can do for another person, to bring them to Jesus. It is another way of repeating the invitation of Jesus to “come and see”.

Come and See Jesus in the Gospel of John.

Jesus went into Galilee looking for disciples. He found Philip and said, “Follow me.” (John 1:43) This is the step beyond “come and see”; and if we are to understand the complete process of learning Christ, then we need to know the difference between coming to see and following


Step 1: “Come and See”.

step 2: “Follow Me”.

What it comes down to is what did Philip know about Jesus that first disciples did not yet know when the invitation was simply to “come and see”. Well, to answer that, we must investigate learning. Educational theory indicates that in general people learn four ways: (I) Rote memory, (2) Example, (3) Trial and Error, and (4) Creativity. We must add a fifth way to include the special way that Christ is learned. True, the other four secular ways are also included in the learning process, but without the fifth and special way it is impossible to pass from the simple “come and see” to the “follow Me.”

To see this fifth way of learning, we need to look at what Jesus Himself told us about learning in the Gospel of John.

“It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’ Therefore, everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me.” (John 6:45)

  1. Those who have heard directly from the Father are those who really learn Christ, heard from the Father through the Word of God and through the Holy Spirit.
  2. Those who have learned from the Father are those who come to Jesus. Philip found Nathaniel and said to him:

“We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” (John 1:45)

Nathaniel was skeptical. He asked: “Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?” (John 1:46)  (NOTE: Nazareth had a bad reputation in the time and generation of Nathaniel.
“Jesus saw Nathaniel coming to him, and saith of him, ‘Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile.”‘ (John 1:47)
Philip had learned by example from Jesus. Philip said to Nathaniel, “Come and See.” Those who are skeptical, Phillip not being one of those since he immediately received the invitation to “follow me”, must “come and see” more than those who are not skeptical; and later in this book we will discuss not only the importance of hearing the Word of God in believing, but also the important of “evidence” in believing.) Jesus knew men even as He knows men today. He immediately took care of the skepticism. He provided Nathaniel with “evidence” for believing in Him as the Son of God.

  1. Nathaniel was a real Israelite.
  2. Nathaniel was sincere about being an Israelite.

Jesus replied: ‘Before that Phillip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee.” (John 1:48) With a little demonstration of His powers as the Son of God, Jesus showed Nathaniel that He could exhibit the all-seeing capabilities of God the Father. How quickly it worked on Nathaniel! Instantly Nathaniel passed from the sceptic who must “come and see” to the disciple that is ready to “follow Me.’

‘Nathaniel answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.” (John 1 :49)

This identified Jesus of Nazareth in the mind of Nathaniel, the former sceptic, as: (1) The Son of God, and (2) as the King of Israel, the Prophet Messiah of the Old Testament.

‘Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these.” (John 1:50)

This was not a reprimand. It was rather an invitation to see more and believe more. Seeing

Nathaniel under the fig tree was only a minor miracle, Nathaniel would see much more godlikeness in the miracles that Jesus would perform in his presence as in the presence of the other disciples. (NOTE: See how carefully John has selected what he writes in the Gospel of John. “the Son of God” from Nathaniel reinforces the preface of John where Jesus is the “word” with God and is God, and where a very minor miracle with a promise from Jesus of seeing much more, is preparation for the seven magnificent miracles around which the Gospel of John is weaved.)

33-3: “Come and SEE” is the Invitation of Today.

“COME AND SEE” IS THE INVITATION THAT JESUS EXTENDS IN THIS DAY AND TIME AND THAT TELLS US SOMETHING ABOUT JESUS HIMSELF. A person recently said to me to justify his lack of interest in Christianity, “There is so much confusing about the Bible: all those translations, the priests had their own ax to grind and sins in their own lives, and the manuscripts have gone through so many languages.

To which I replied simply: “Since there are 66 books in the Bible, what I do is to compare one book against the other 65.
That is what will be done in this volume and the other of the seven volumes of THE LEARNING CHRIST NEW TESTAMENT COMMENTARIES. In the science of “hermeneutics”, or the science of Biblical interpretation, it is called comparing scripture with scripture. For example, you will find that it is the same Jesus being quoted in Matthew as in John. You will find that what Jesus says and does in John is consistent with what Jesus says and does in Matthew. For that reason, Matthew is quoted now on what Jesus said in other words with the equivalent of “come and see”. It really goes a little beyond “come and see”, which John also does as we will see later.

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your SOULS. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:30)

See how that goes beyond “come and see” and even beyond “follow me”. Recently as I was driving along after my daily prayers and thinking of some of the problems that I would commit to Christ since He “cares for me”, I was warmed within as I saw the billboard of the sign with the fireman carrying the child to safety and the word “Gotcha”. God and God through Jesus with much more power to carry it out says to the Christian disciple, “Gotcha!”

1. It is a today invitation

(1). It is an invitation to those that work for a living

Jesus has a preference, and always has, for the blue-collar worker over the white color worker. Not only is it difficult for the rich and wise to believe, but the preference for the Gospel of Christ in the Bible is for the poor and humble in status. Those that “labour and are heavy laden.”

(2). It is an invitation to those that are heavy laden.

The invitation becomes more general here, for truly the rich and wise are as heavily laden with problems as are the poor and laborer. While the wise and established in this world have more of a problem with the special learning of Christ from God the Father, this general invitation is to the educated and uneducated, the down and outers as well as the up and outers, to the wealthy and the poor, and to the established as well as the struggling.

(3). It is an invitation for rest.

The Shepherd of the Old Testament is one with the Shepherd of the New Testament. Even as we can say of the Shepherd of the Old Testament, “Our Father which art in heaven…” and “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures…” and ‘He restoreth my soul”, so also, we can say of the Shepherd of the New Testament He “will give you rest.”

(4). It is the invitation to take a yoke.

The invitation is also a call to the discipline of discipleship. The yoke like the yoke on the oxen is a discipline of direction and dedication in life. “Take my yoke upon you and learn of me.

However, the yoke is easy, and the burden is light.

(5). It is an invitation to learn. We need a reminder that this is what disciple means, a learner. The first disciples called Jesus “Rabbi”, or Teacher before they called Him Master or Lord. The “come and see” was an invitation to come and learn. When these first disciples asked Him, “Where do you live?”‘ it was really a question of how do you live and what is your life-style?

  1.  The Invitation to “Come and See” tells us something about Jesus Himself.

(1). Jesus is Meek.

Jesus is a supervisor that is concerned about His disciples. He will not beat them down or expect of them what they are not capable of doing. He will patiently teach and guide disciples. He will give them what is best for they life and career as a disciple.

(2). Jesus is Lowly in Heart.

Jesus in not like the rich and powerful. Or even Christians who want to be bossy and exercise control. He is like among the humble folk. Even as Jesus taught that “blessed are the poor in spirit’, another way to say the humble, and blessed are they that mourn, and blessed are the meek, and merciful, and pure in heart, and blessed are the peacemakers, first of all He offers all these things to disciples that will first “come and see” and then “follow me.’


John’s stay on the isle of Patmos put him in the authorship business: not only did he with the revelations of Revelation get the word “Word” for Christ with which to start the Gospel of John, but also, he received as recorded in Revelation 22:17 the primary invitation of the Gospel of John.

“And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” (Revelation 22:17)

Come, Come, and Come in the book of Revelation as an introduction to the Gospel of John. Behind Revelation all the Gospel of John must do is add the “See”. See what Jesus said, see what Jesus taught, and See the character of Jesus: then when His life on earth is over, see how the Holy Spirit continues the work of Jesus on earth. The best way to visualize the relationship between the work of Jesus and that of the Holy Spirit is to consider the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of Jesus at work on this earth. Before Jesus lived on this earth, during Old Testament times, the Spirit of Jesus was at work among the authors of the Old Testament writing Scriptures; and after Jesus Ascended to the right hand of the Father, the Spirit of Jesus came back, sent by and from the Father, in a more powerful and more democratic fashion.

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants, I will pour out My Spirit in those days; and they shall prophesy. I will show wonders in heaven above and signs in the earth beneath: blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and notable day of the LORD. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.” (Joel 2:30 and Acts 2:17-21)

  1. Recall this is a prophecy from the Prophet Joel which the Apostle Peter said was being fulfilled before their eyes on the first day of Pentecost after the Ascension of Jesus.
  2. This is in the “last days”
  3. See the democratic outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, with the Spirit on all flesh, the young men, the old men, the men and women.
  4. For one day is to God as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day, the first coming of Christ blends in together with the Second Coming in the “great and notable day of the LORD. ‘
  5. The most significant aspect of those days between is that “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved ‘

So… the “bride” says COME in Revelation 22:17. The bride is, of course, Christ: ‘ Jesus”, we read in verse 16 of Revelation 22. It is the root and offspring of David and the bright and morning star who says “Come” first in Revelation and then in the Gospel of John in the sequence of writing. Or in the actual historical sequence first during His life on earth as recorded in the Gospel of John and then in the book of Revelation that occurred after His Ascension back to the right hand of the Father.

Everyone that hears says “Come”. All Christians that have personal experience because of their listening to the Holy Spirit say “Come.” The spirit says COME.

Let everyone that is thirsty COME.

Jesus said that He was “the bread of life” and “the water of life”, and the Holy Spirit today reminds us of those facts. As Jesus taught:

“Nevertheless, I tell you the truth; it is expedient for you that I go way: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment…” (John

  1. The Spirit reproves the world of sin.

Jesus explains further in the next verse (John 16:9) that the primary sin is that of unbelief: “of sin, because they believe not on me.
NOTE: This is a problem with the American Conscience today especially as practiced by the fundamentalists. They try to usurp the work of the Holy Spirit, themselves desiring to reprove the rest of the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. This besides making themselves feel godlike, also eases the guilt of their own conscience and provides a certain superiority complex.
The only condemning sin that Jesus and the Spirit are concerned about is the sin of unbelief. The sin of unbelief is the only unforgivable sin. The Spirit works with men today to remind them that Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world, the Spirit reminds men that Jesus is the Christ, the Promised Messiah; and the Spirit reminds men that Jesus of Nazareth was and is the Son of God.

  1. The Spirit reproves the world of righteousness.

“…of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more…” (John 16:10)   We cannot see Jesus today exactly as the first disciples did in flesh, but the Spirit was sent to remind us of what Jesus is like. Jesus is righteousness and when we look at the character and works of Jesus and the teachings we see righteousness.

  1. The Spirit reproves the world of judgment.

Simultaneously while the Spirit is at work in the world today reminding us of sin and righteousness, He is also reminding us of the judgment to come if we do not believe on Jesus as the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

“…of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged…” (John 16:11)

The New King James Version calls this “prince of this world” the “ruler of this world.” This is of course Satan! He is the top leader in the “world” that is to be shunned: He is the top leader in the world of the American Conscience. So, if the top is judged so also will be all that chose to follow Satan in the rejection of the Lord Jesus Christ through unbelief.

You see how this rejection is more than a disbelief, for you know that Satan having been an angel in heaven knows that Jesus is the Son of God. Unbelief is a positive rejection of the Lordship of Jesus over life, a rebellion, if you will, against the high God of the universe.


(NOTE: To contend for the faith is to take the faith back from the simulators of Christianity. They simulate Christianity in that they replace methods and a sensitized American Conscience with the correct learning of Christ. The manner in which the faith is taken back from them is: (1) Identify their status, popularity, nice suits and buildings for what they are (contrast what you know about the way Christ lived with what you see today); (2) put doctrines especially the doctrine of Christ up front in priority beyond their methods; (3) Provide examples of how Christ is learned since there are some Christians left in the fundamentalists churches that are overwhelmed, leaderless, and surrounded.)

“Come and see” is the invitation of the Gospel of John. It is an invitation to read about, to hear about, and then later to believe in Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God.

John the Apostle tells the reason that he wrote the Gospel of John.

“And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: but these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.” (John 20:30,31) You must see some similarity between “the signs on the earth beneath” of Acts 2 and Joel with the “signs” of Jesus in the Gospel of John. Indeed, the last days shows signs above and below!

  1. Jesus did “signs” in the presence of His disciples. What are signs? Signs are something that you can see, the essential gist continues of coming to see.
  2. The character of Christ is a sign. The thief on the cross said, “We are being crucified justly, but He has done no wrong.
  3. The teachings of Jesus are signs. It was said of Jesus when he was on earth and is still said of him today that “Never man spake like this man.”
  4. The works of Jesus are a sign. When Jesus turned the water into wine, or walked on water, or made the deaf to hear and the lame to walk, it was a “sign” from God that this Jesus of Nazareth was the very Christ. Nicodemus said to Jesus as other have:

“Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.” (John 3:2)

  1. The death of Christ on the cross was a sign. As John the Baptist said, this was the Lamb of God—the Lamb which God provided—taking away the sins of the world.
  2. The resurrection of Christ was a sign. Where else have you heard of God bringing someone from the grave on the third day. And it is easily verifiable as a fact that would stand up in a court of law. As Peter said on the first day of Pentecost after the resurrection, “This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.” (Acts 2:32)
  3. To be a personal and reliable witness was the purpose of John’s writing of the Gospel of John. Jesus did these signs in the very presence of John and the other disciples. Nothing was done secretly.
  4. John was selective about the signs that are recorded in the Gospel of John. Jesus performed many works and miracles, some in Matthew, others in Mark and Luke, and not all recorded.

“And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written everyone, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.” (John 21:13)

John was selective to achieve the goals of (I) Come and see, and then (2) believe and have life.

‘But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.” (John 20:31)

  • It is written for no lesser purpose but that you the reader might have everlasting life after death and abundant life on this earth. The book of Revelation describes it as out of the belly comes rivers of living water.
    The correct response to the Gospel of John is to believe.
  1. The Gospel of John is the Gospel of Belief. The word “believe” is mentioned an overwhelming number of times in John.
  2. It is a selective belief in Jesus of Nazareth as the Son of God, as the Promised Messiah or Christ of the Old Testament. It selective belief is to believe as John the Baptist said that Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world; to believe like John the Apostle recorded that “He is the Christ”; to believe like Phillip told Nathanael, “We have found him, of whom Moses wrote in the law and the prophets, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” (John 1:45)

33-6: In John 3 we have Nicodemus coming to see Jesus.

“There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: the same came to Jesus by night…”

This tells us four things about this “man” that came to see Jesus: (1) he was a Pharisee; (2) his name was Nicodemus; (3) he was a ruler of the Jews; and (4) he came secretly at night.

I. Nicodemus was ruler of the Jews.

The Roman government was in power, but they permitted each culture they dominated to retain their own form of government. For the Jews, it was the Sanhedrin that ruled both the politics and religion of Israel. In fact, the religious laws were also the laws of the nation. You will recall that Paul was a lawyer before he became a Christian, and that meant that he was trained in the religious laws which were the laws of the nation. Well, Nicodemus was a member of that religious and political and even social ruling body, the Sanhedrin.

Later in the gospel of John, it will be members of the Sanhedrin that plot to put Jesus to death lest the Romans come and take away their place and their nation; later in John, it will be the Sanhedrin, or at least the Pharisees and chief priests of that body, that look for Jesus during the Passover; and later in John, it will be member of this body, with help from Judas, that come to arrest Jesus. You see that this Sanhedrin was very concerned about their status as religious and political leaders in the nation—they didn’t want to lose it—and they did not want to lose their status in the Roman Empire. (It reminds you of certain Baptist churches today who are so fearful of losing their position in the association and in the Southern Baptist Convention.) And we must also recall the statement from the Bible that it is very difficult for a person of wealth and status to become a Christian.
And this was what Jesus had in mind when He said that it was harder for a rich man to go to heaven than it is for a camel to go through the eye of a needle. Why? Simply the status, position, wealth, and possessions get in the way of putting Christ first in life. However, we do know looking ahead in the story that Nicodemus did take seriously the teachings of the new birth, but that is for later.
“For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, nor many noble, are called.”

  1. Nicodemus was a Pharisee.

There were two parties in the Sanhedrin: the Sadducees that did not believe in a resurrection from the dead and the Pharisees that did; yet it was primarily the Pharisees that made themselves an enemy of Jesus which seems strange since believing in the resurrection, one of their main accusations against Jesus was that He would rise from the dead on the third day. John the Baptist condemned both religious and political parties.

“But when he (John the Baptist) saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come.”

The most stinging accusations that Jesus made against people or groups of people while on earth was against the Pharisees and Sadducees. Just before chapter 3 of John and in the second half of chapter 2, Jesus has an encounter with the Pharisees and Sadducees in the temple at Jerusalem. Jesus said they were making His Father’s house a den of thieves and moneychangers. Jesus with a whip drove them out of the temple, He poured out the money of the moneychangers and threw over their tables.

“Then answered the Jews and said unto him, what sign shewest thou unto us, seeing that thou doest these things?”

‘Jesus answered and said unto them, destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”
Jesus was speaking of His own body. Either the Pharisees and Sadducees did not understand this, choosing to think that He meant the physical temple there in Jerusalem, or they refused to acknowledge it. Indeed, this is the very crux of the whole plan of salvation for the people of God: realizing that the new temple and tabernacle is the body of Christ! The whole plan of salvation is that God is building through the body of Christ a large temple of worship composed of believers, Jews and Gentiles. It took forty years to make that temple in Jerusalem, the religious leaders said, how could you rebuild it in three days?

(NOTE: other possible subjects for Bible study in this passage are: Christ before wealth, status, etc.; Pharisees and Sadducees, Matt. 3:7; a house of worship becomes a den of thieve, John 2:18 and John 2:19; the new tabernacle is the body of Christ.)

Christianity 101a: Well Established in the World

The well established in American Society have reasons to be fearful of their salvation and if possible should do diligence to “work out their own salvation with fear and trembling”, because being well establish in society is strikingly similar to “of the world” and the worldly.  Also, of necessity such positions in society make them a “Friend of the world and an enemy of God.”  In well established we think obviously of the super-rich, civil service workers that have made more than one year and therefore can not be fired; tenured professors at colleges, universities, and seminaries; and of course, politicians of years in government that have a protective voting machine at home, and of course there are others that have it made financially and in status, therefore can be considered the well-established.  Likewise, we think of those established in denominational work and churches bestowed with the status, recognition, and of the honor of society called a Doctors degree.  It is sort of like kidding ourselves that heaven recognizes such foolishness, and rewards in heaven will be bestowed by the accreditation organizations.

The world thinks of the beatitudes from Jesus, seldom the woes of Jesus pronounced immediately after that—

“Jesus Pronounces Woes

24 “But woe to you who are rich,
    For you have received your consolation.
25 Woe to you who are full,
    For you shall hunger.
Woe to you who laugh now,
    For you shall mourn and weep.
26 Woe to you[e] when all[f] men speak well of you,
    For so did their fathers to the false prophets.

The world holds up the standard “to be nice”, yet Jesus teaches about the world that “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for so did their fathers to the false prophets.  Even the beatitudes before that limit the world and worldly from the happiness of God’s blessings:

The Beatitudes

20 Then He lifted His eyes toward His disciples, and said:

“Blessed are you poor,
    For yours is the kingdom of God.
21 Blessed are you who hunger now,
    For you shall be filled.
Blessed are you who weep now,
    For you shall laugh.
22 Blessed are you when men hate you,
    And when they exclude you,
    And revile you, and cast out your name as evil,
    For the Son of Man’s sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy!
    For indeed your reward is great in heaven,
    For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

We also overlook the beginning of the Beatitudes that Jesus “lifted up His eyes toward His disciples” …

It is a shame that large churches have put pressure on their pastors to have the worldly status of a PhD or Th.D., for most of the time even in our seminaries the standards are controlled by the secular and worldly which denies “that the wisdom of the world is foolishness with God”  One of the best Baylor has produced, and a good friend, holder of the world record in the broad jump and long time head of the BSU and the pastor of a large church in Dallas from which SB had to withdraw fellowship for gay perversions, traceable back to the PhD program which was controlled by cultural and worldly weirdos.

All distinction has been lost between the children of this world and the child of God, between the separation of the body of Christ from the world, from a peculiar people to a people honored by the world.