Ye Shall Live And Never Die
By Philip Vermaak
The Prayer of Jesus 3
Nevertheless When The Son Of Man Cometh, 6
Shall He Find Faith 6
The Truth 9
Creation and Longevity 14
The Ascension of Early Man 20
Raise The Dead 24
Eternal Life 34
Jesus Is Faith 44
The Bride 48
Feed My Sheep 52
The Sermon Jesus Will Preach On His Return 54
The Prayer Of Jesus 62
The Tree Of Life 64
All Scripture references from
The King James Version, (Cambridge: Cambridge) 1769.
The Prayer of Jesus
This book is written in response to the prayer of our Lord and saviour Jesus so that the world may know the truth and as it is stated in verse three “this is eternal life that they may know you, the only true God”.
John Chapter 17 vs. 1-26
1These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: 2As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. 3And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. 4I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. 5And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
6I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word. 7Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee. 8For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me. 9I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine. 10And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.
11And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. 12While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled. 13And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. 14I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 15I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. 16They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
17Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. 18As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. 19And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
20Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
24Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. 25O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. 26And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
This book is dedicated to my teacher and guide the Holy Spirit and to my wife Margaret who has endured with me since 1988 with loving patience and to Luke Tamu, who first inspired me after my arrival in the beautiful land of New Zealand.
Ezekiel chapter 18:32.
For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.
Nevertheless When The Son Of Man Cometh, Shall He Find Faith
This famous quote from the Lord is found in Luke 18:8 8I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? And it might raise the question “what exactly will Jesus be looking for on His return?”. On July the twentieth 1984 I gave my life to the Lord Jesus and had a wonderful conversion to becoming a born again Christian by having a miraculous life changing experience, something I had always believed could happen right from my childhood days. I thank God for that chance meeting with a friend and ex colleague, Jenny, at two o’clock on that warm sunny afternoon in the heart of Johannesburg South Africa.
Immediately and with enormous intensity that day the power of God became tangible and real in my life which was to take an entirely new direction to eternity. From that moment on almost every circumstance and situation in my life was about to change entirely forever. God had always blessed me with an awesome gift of empathy for people, especially the poor; this drive from within my soul has always been toward the sick and the poor. In fact the ‘down and out’, those people who seem to go through life without purpose and plan. In many chronically ill people this loss of purpose seems to become more evident especially when all hope appears to be lost. In my early days of ministry the Lord had burdened my heart with prayer for the sick and often times I was lead to prayer for those bed ridden patients in the Johannesburg general hospital as well as those that the Holy spirit lead me to on the streets of South Africa.
I had witnessed many healings and also miracles, I believe that Jesus always heals those that are prayed for, and to think otherwise would be total unbelief. He is always willing contrary to popular religious beliefs. This fact brings me to the reason for this book and since I also do not believe that a Christian should die because clearly there is no scripture to the contrary.
I recall one occasion when I went to prayer for a cancer patient who was “terminal” and hospitalised in a Hospice unit in Johannesburg. On arrival at the unit I announced my intentions to the person in charge and was duly denied entry because it was against house rules and besides it was policy that the patients be allowed to have a dignified death, whatever that might mean? The actions of that duty nurse that day horrified me and a holy anger rose up in my spirit, I was infuriated to think that the lies of Satan could be so effective in the life of man and that people could actually believe that God would want people to die in agony while Satan steals another life.
The rubbish that people are led to believe through the work of the father of lies in the name of religion and science is absolutely beyond me and the plans of God for mankind. These lies can never be substantiated through the word; thank God His ways are not our ways for His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. Quite clearly the word of God has everything to do with life and life more abundantly.
This early experience of mine seemed to give me a lift in my faith and belief in the word of God and started me on the road to search the truth in the word this truth would reveal God’s plan for the life of man on this planet called earth. Mark chapter 7:8 says
8For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.
This scripture verse proves to me that God’s ways are not our ways and that I needed to change my way of thinking and literally believe every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. To believe also what the bible says about life and not what man thinks the bible says about it.
My start in life was a slow one, from every aspect, but I soon grew into being a relatively healthy person. My early youth was plagued by severe tonsillitis but other than that I hardly knew sickness or disease. Since becoming a Christian I could count my visits to doctors on one hand, in fact I have never been as a result of sickness. I always take my pains and sickness to Jesus for healing, not that I have much of it either, praise God for His blessings. I make mention of this to show the reader that I am a normal healthy person and I have trained my mind to refuse to accept sickness and pain.
In May 1999 I had the pleasure of hearing the testimonies of an African evangelist by the name of Luke Tamu who was visiting from Kenya and holding meetings in Levin at the time. Luke told amazing testimonies of miraculous healings with such enthusiasm and the sparkle in his African eyes would light up as he recounted the wonderful miracles performed in his ministry by the Lord Jesus. These included accounts of the dead being raised and limbs growing amongst many others of healing. I was provoked by these miraculous reports and immediately developed a strong desire to see these events being repeated in New Zealand. In my opinion this country has been robbed of all of God’s blessings, the evidence of poverty and sickness in a small nation like this one is living proof of the outcome of the blessings and curses promised in the word of God.
If we are to live a life of abundance then we must surely listen to the voice of God and to every word spoken by Jesus. Some of Jesus’ statements were so radical that even the high priests were involved in physically removing Him from the temple. Are we as believers to be complacent and satisfied with the present status quo in the church? Where do you see the dead being raised and the modern church living in prosperity? Would you send your son to die on the cross today? To have life going on as usual, with all the filth that’s become apparent in society. Come on let’s get real, the world is in a mess and Jesus said that he came so that we could have life and life more abundantly. So what is missing? Is God a Liar? Is all that Jesus said just a load of hot air to fill the pages of scripture? As Paul said, God forbid, no. Jesus got it right in John 8:32 he said
32And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
The problem today is that religion has twisted every word to conform to some or other philosophy and theory of man and placed it above the true word of God. You do not need a concordance or a dictionary to interpret or understand what Jesus said. My bible teaches me that the Holy Spirit will teach me and praise God that’s enough for me. Unless the word of God is a Rhema and revealed by the Spirit it will always be doctrine and have no life.
Only a fool would be content to go about life as usual and believe that all is well in the kingdom of God and that God is well pleased when in effect only the opposite is true. I cannot equate the present state of life in the world with what Jesus said, this is why I believe the Spirit of God has taken me on this journey to search out the purpose and God’s plan of life for man kind. There just has to be so much more, so come along with me and let us take the path that God has shown me along His way in the word.
The journey to eternal life is set out in the bible from Genesis to Revelation but more specifically in the gospel of John through the words of Jesus our Lord and saviour. The works and words of Jesus demonstrate the power and truth of God’s words and reveal His plans for man’s salvation, which also includes everlasting life. The day you gave your life to Jesus is the day in which you stepped into eternity. Jesus said, “my words are life”.
In the book of John chapter 10:27-30Jesus said 27My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: 28And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. 29My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. 30I and my Father are one.
In John 8:29 Jesus said that He does nothing by himself and everything He does is to please the Father in heaven. Christians have the confidence that if they believe and trust Jesus He will do all that He has promised, that is certain and final, guaranteed and settled in heaven. It is never a question of “if”, but rather “when”, because it does not depend on whether or not God is willing, God is always willing and besides His word is His will.
His word is very specific and clear for every situation in our lives, “better you choose life”. John 11:4 4When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.
No sickness is unto death and God does not serve us up with sickness. He promised to heal all even to the point that if any die we the church have been commanded to raise the dead, that’s faith. There are no conditions to these promises other than to believe.
In the book of Ezekiel God says . For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: That’s God’s will. If God is the healer you have to wonder why it is that so many Christians are daily running to their doctors for healing. Is this why Jesus asked the question “Will I find faith?”
In John 10:29-30 Jesus asserts His authority and deity and guarantees our trust in himself. Later in verse 32 He questions our doubt by asking:
'Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? The story of Lazarus is told in John 11:11-26:
11These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. 12Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. 13Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. 14Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. 15And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him. 16Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellowdisciples, Let us also go, that we may die with him. 17Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already. 18Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off: 19And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. 20Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house. 21Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. 22But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee. 23Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. 24Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. 25Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
This passage of scripture raises the question in my mind, and I have to ask, why would Jesus raise someone from the dead if He knew that they were going to die again at some or other later date? This surely demonstrates unequivocally the will of God,
“that none should perish but that all should have everlasting life”.
That is, no physical death. The same reasoning must apply to all sicknesses and we could ask a similar question why would God, who has such infinite love for us, allow us to suffer in sickness and ultimately lie down and die in pain and misery? Not the God I believe in, how about you? It seems crazy to me that people would want to believe in a God so cruel. It is rubbish to believe such doctrines of man let alone to ever imagine such things of our creator. Jesus said that He came that we might have life and life more abundantly; He has given us the Christians, all power and authority over all things, glory to God.
I believe that and that’s why I can rejoice in the truth when His word witnesses with my spirit, it brings life and I refuse to allow the dull and negative thoughts of man to poison my mind against the true word of God. The bible teaches that the carnal mind of man is enmity to God and we are to renew our mind with the washing of the water of the word. The word of truth, not man’s interpretation or eschatology but the pure word of God. We cannot be deceived by the father of lies who comes but to rob, steal, kill and destroy. Psalm 41 verses 1-4 is a very good summary to this sentence:
1 Blessed is he that considereth the poor: the LORD will deliver him in time of trouble. 2The LORD will preserve him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth: and thou wilt not deliver him unto the will of his enemies. 3The LORD will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing: thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness. 4I said, LORD, be merciful unto me: heal my soul; for I have sinned against thee. Genesis 6:5 5And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Since the beginning of time this has been God’s problem with man, not so much the sin, but the mind of man from which sinful actions are birthed. This is emphasised in Genesis 8:21
1And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done'.
There are no exclusions or exceptions. The believer is taught and in fact commanded to renew the mind by the word of God in Romans 12:2.
'And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Unfortunately many believers are so single minded that they cannot even make up their minds to want to change and believe God that the life we are living is meant to be far more fulfilling and blessed than we can ever think or imagine. Only then will we begin to discover what that “perfect” will of God is. Six thousand years of man’s teachings, unbelief, doctrines, theories, theologies and eschatology have now all been crammed into the mind to erode our thoughts and faith. Enshrouded in doubt and unbelief we have become prey to every new doctrine believing that something new will breakout on the horizon bringing with it new found hope and encouragement. Yet with each new wave of hope comes greater trial and error and ultimately failure, while the word of truth stands firm forever.
The plan of the enemy Satan is to sow confusion and set all the forces of darkness, which are very real, against the body of believers so that the word of God would have limited effect in the lives of the believer binding the mind. More often than not even the church is used as a pawn in this onslaught, hence we see so frequently the word being preached without power. This leaves the body wilting and fading because of the lack of the truth being taught. The manna being fed is yesterday’s, full of worms and rotten, no man can survive on such a diet. The seed cannot germinate in unbelief, infertile soil, no matter how much water you pour onto it.
In Luke 8:4-11 4'And when much people were gathered together, and were come to him out of every city, he spake by a parable: 5A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it. 6And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture. 7And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it. 8And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. 9And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be? 10And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand. 11Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God'
Jesus teaches the importance of the word in the daily life of the believer, He also said the Kingdom of God is like sowing and reaping, note verse 11'Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.'
I believe that the mind of man will decide what kind of ground or type of soil the seed is being sown into. Jesus speaking of Moses in John 5:47 said 47But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words? So the faith by which we receive the word will work out in our daily lives, we see this in the lives of people around about us; some are stronger in one area maybe prayer life, others in a different area of life. My bible tells me that I have the mind of Christ in 1Corinthians 2:16, 16'For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.'
I believe that every word of God is seed for sowing and therefore 13I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Philippians 4:13.
In Romans 14:23 we are taught that whatever is not of faith, is sin, 23And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.
This refers to the mind and imagination, our thoughts and deeds.
If one were to analyse carefully the state of the modern day church, both mainline and “Pentecostal” one would find a church waiting to die in poverty and iniquity. This is totally the opposite from what Jesus said in John 3:16.
16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
What is wrong and who is the liar? It’s not Jesus; it has to be the “church”. Jesus had much to say about religion in Mathew’s gospel chapter 24, it is time for the believer to realise that religion is an abomination in the eyes of God. Sadly most Pentecostal churches are no different from the mainline churches, they are merely a more liberated type of religion, twice as dead denying the power of God. God is a God of power and love, holiness and righteousness. These qualities are not what the church is made of today, the truth is not being preached, but rather the truth is being compromised. Stay with me and I will prove it in God’s word.
God cannot be mocked; the present day structures of church have failed the communities they serve so miserably. The church and its members are a dying breed fed up of being served stale fast foods for a fast buck. It is high time for the fruit to be dished up, the fruit of life so that the church can live the abundant life. You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free.
Creation and Longevity
In order for us humans to know where we are headed we need to retrace our footsteps through creation in the book of Genesis, the very beginning, and look at the historical facts through the eyes of God, our creator. Please allow the Holy Spirit to be your guide and teacher, discard all of man’s teachings and theology as you go.
26And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. 27So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. 28And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
29And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
These verses of scripture from Genesis 1:26-29 clearly states that we are created in the image of God, we are also told that God is spirit and Jesus His son born of a virgin mother came in the flesh. The point I am making is that we were created; we did not evolve from swamp gas, the Word reads “let us make man in our image.” In John 17:5 we read
5And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
This proves that the word “us” used in this verse in Genesis refers to God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit. Glory to God the human race did not evolve from the ape either. We are created in His image to worship, love, fellowship and glorify Him, the God of the universe. To love God with all our heart, mind, body and strength, in spirit and deed.
When Adam and Eve ate of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the Garden of Eden they were denied the right to the tree of life. Their sins began the pattern of erosion in the mind of man, and so the ageing process of decay set in the thought process of man’s mind which became the carnal mind referred to in the New Testament, this is the reprobate mind referred to in the book of Romans beginning at chapter 1:1.
1Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God.'
Genesis 2:17 the word reads
17But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
This is not an instruction to die but it is the beginning of the fall of man, this is the resultant separation of man from God, which ultimately leads to physical death.
The wages of sin is death, where there is sin death must follow; this is a spiritual law just as the law of gravity is a physical law. Sin begins in the mind of man, carnality and iniquity become unrighteousness and eventually manifests in the physical body through the lust of the flesh.
This manifestation in the flesh comes in various forms, sickness, habits etc, the end of which is death. This outworking in man is usually the reason why people turn their back on God and become separated from life.
Sin is the work of the devil, the father of lies and deception. Satan and his host of demonic cohorts will do all that they can to keep man from the love of God to enforce the establishment of his (Satan’s) principalities and strongholds in the mind of man.
Praise God for the Word which is mighty in the pulling down of these strongholds to set man free from fear, deceit and unbelief. In Genesis 3:22-24
22And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: 23Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. 24So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.
The tree of life is now no longer accessible to Adam or man because of the Cheribum who were guarding it. Later in the book of Revelation we find that the tree of life reappears in Revelation 2:7.
7He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
The fruit of the tree of life is reserved for the righteous to be consumed for eternal life in the future period known or referred to by the bible as eternity. This all takes place in heaven after the “white throne judgment”, but until those prophecies are fulfilled the need arises on earth to sustain everlasting life, which is God’s covenant with man in holiness and righteousness.
That is what God’s covenant with Abram was, “better you choose life”. The plan of salvation for man is now revealed in Genesis 3:15
15And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
This prophecy and plan of action is set in motion by God for the whole creation of mankind. God’s plan to sanctify the sinful nature of man is now activated by His love so that the original plan of fellowship of God and man can continue.
When we examine the lifespan of early man we see that it ranged in the 900 plus years, in fact God told Adam that in that day that you eat thereof you will surely die. Adam lived 950 years before he died, this confirms the scripture in 2Peter 3:8
8But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
This covenant with man is changed in Genesis 6:3
3And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.
God has had a change of heart since man has broken the covenant in verse 5
5And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Once again man turns away from his creator, the giver of life. In Genesis chapter 6:7 God’s wrath is revealed:
7And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.
We see that although God has now birthed His plan for salvation and everlasting life, He is about to pour out His wrath in the days of Noah and the rains appear for the first time on earth. Noah and his family are the remnant, because Noah walked with God. He was a righteous man, resulting in the whole family being saved. God now makes a new covenant with Noah, Genesis 9:16:
16And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.
The covenant is to be an everlasting one; the term everlasting is used to confirm God’s plan for all life to be everlasting. God has now repented and Noah goes on to live 950 years. We must remember that God says in His word that He changes not and is the same yesterday today and tomorrow. He is not a man that He should lie.
It is interesting to note the outworking of sin in man in the post Noah days. Once again it is revealed in the shortened longevity of man. The days begin to be numbered with declining years as is revealed in Genesis 11:32
32And the days of Terah were two hundred and five years: and Terah died in Haran.
The effects of sin increased as the sins of man grew worse and worse, idolatry, murder, fornication. The list goes on.
As time progresses, God, in His loneliness and love for man, (for He is not having the fellowship of man), decides to go down to Babel, Gen 11:7.
7Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.
Not only is He now missing the walk with man, but He has concern for the ambitious plans which man is now busying himself with.
In Genesis 11:6
6And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.
God reveals the power of the human mind and He declares a vital key for the survival of mankind, “and now nothing will be restrained from them which they have imagined to do.” Wow what a wonderfully powerful statement?
Anything, if only we believe, this is a technique which the world puts to good use to satisfy the greed for wealth, power and pleasure. How much more should we as Christians be applying this principal in our prayer life, especially in regards our healing and prayers for the lost.
God took a step of mercy and grace and visited man at Babel so that he could scatter man abroad upon the face of the earth in Genesis 19:9.
9And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.
So once again man’s aspirations to ascend to the power and glory in heaven are thwarted. I do not believe that God had a problem with the plans of man as much as he had a problem with the motives of the flesh. This incident in the history of mankind gave birth to the greatest fallacy.
Mans mind never became confused. The language was confounded. It seems that from this time onwards man believed the opposite since God has continually reminded us in His word that with Him all things are possible to them that believe.
I often have to ask myself why it is that man finds it so difficult to believe that every word of His is absolute truth and that His love for us is infinite and eternal. God only asks that we believe and love Him with all that we have and are.
28And the days of Isaac were an hundred and fourscore years.'
The trend of shortened days (in numbers) continues as the lawlessness progresses and the word of God is fulfilled in man’s life.
Still God continues to prophecy the coming Messiah through His word. Thank God He never gives up on us, and so, when the Israelites found themselves captive in Egypt, God had His plan and this was to be revealed through awesome signs and wonders, together with the manifestation of the physical plan of salvation which would reveal the spiritual plan evidenced by the crucifixion of Jesus.
One of God’s laws for kingdom living is that whatever you sow, that you shall reap. I have made the choice to sow good seed in my life and the seed I have chosen to sow into good soil. The soil being my mind, the seed being the Word of God - truth. For ‘as a man thinketh, so is he’, the problem with most people today is that they believe whatever they want to or choose to.
Unfortunately these do not always line up with the word of God, but more often the doctrine of man. Most Christians do not know the heart of God because they’ve never taken the time to seek His face.
If you want to live a successful life, find out what God has on His heart for you and decide to live your life for God and not according to the ways and beliefs of man. Get real with God and find out just how real God is, thank God His ways are not our ways. It would have been very easy for God to have left the Israelites in Egypt and to have moved Pharaoh and his people into the wilderness.
God had a plan and part of the plan was to fellowship with His people in the wilderness while feeding them the bread from heaven and caring for them. God had such a desire to be in the midst of His people, His chosen people, for He is a jealous God and wants to be the centre of our lives. ‘I am that I am’ says God. We have to take our thoughts captive and line them up with the word of God and as spirit filled Christians our spirit will witness with the Holy Spirit, then God’s will and desires and plans for our lives will be revealed to us. Oh what great and mighty things He has in store for us, those that love Him.
You have to realise what you shall be freed from in John 8:34-36.
'Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. 35And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. 36If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed'.
God introduced the Levitical laws of sacrifice to preserve life for those that obeyed and observed the law. Strangely the very law that God has laid down for life has now become the snare for eternal life amongst the religious Israelites who refuse to accept Jesus as the Son of God.
19I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: 20That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him: for he is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.
These verses of scripture promise life and the principal is that obedience is better than sacrifice, for God wants us to be with Him many days so that our joy may be full and that we be fruitful and multiply.
3Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the sabbath of the LORD in all your dwellings.
The law of the Sabbath and the promise of the fulfilment of this law is also the promise of life. It is amazing how religious Christians become when the law of the Sabbath is mentioned, especially when it is only intended for good. The Sabbath is Holy unto the Lord and yet we seem to find it so easy to profane it by explaining it away with our own simple understanding. When the church gets the revelation of the Sabbath then I believe the church will begin to grow. The church and body of Christ is being robbed because of the ignorance of this spiritual truth. It is so easy to be obedient when you love the Lord with all your heart.
The Ascension of Early Man
I have often wondered why it is that man would think that after God had created the beautiful specimen called man, He would on the very first day of his first demeanour want to see the death of that man. Can you imagine that God actually came down to earth to make the very best in His time and own image? He did this so that he could have someone with whom he could fellowship.
That this person whom he named Adam could call Him Father, so that God could be his sole provider and comforter at all times forever. Humanity has it that God is out to get us as it were, for any thing that we might ever have done wrong or deceitful in our lives.
Many people believe that when it is our time to die, we receive the higher calling, or when the bell tolls it is our appointed time to arrive in heaven. You are no good to the kingdom “D O A” in heaven; Jesus said we do greatly err because we do not know the scriptures. For God to create human life for the purpose of death is just not in the purposes or plans of divine creation and neither is it in the will of God.
It has always been my belief that there is far more to life than what we humans experience on this planet. Our creator has vision and purpose far beyond our thoughts and imaginations but we have to trust His word for His ways are not our ways. If you’re asking the question “what is life all about?” Let me tell you, it’s not about dying but all about living forever, eternity. The answers to life are all in the bible, the word of truth, but in order to find them you will need the help of the Holy Spirit. When you have a revelation of the truth you will have a far greater and deeper perception of life and faith.
Before we progress in the study of everlasting life I feel that it would be important to study the lives of those persons recorded in the bible who were taken up to heaven without having died a physical death, the term referred to can be termed ascension. Some scholars would refer to it as transfiguration but whatever term is used the persons did not leave the physical body but were taken up in the physical form. That is everybody except God himself.
The first recorded account is found in Genesis 5:23-24
23And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years 24And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.
This is an awesome account of a man who was obviously pleasing to God. “He was not found for God took him”. Not much is written of the man Enoch, whom, Hebrews 11:5 5By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.
The two keys here are faith and pleasing, but later in the book we refer to these two aspects of Enoch’s life.
Genesis 14:18 18And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God'.
There is no account of this person who is recorded also in the book of Hebrews 4:10
10For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.
And Psalm 110:4.
4The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
The bible does not record the death of Melchizedek, but states that he is a priest forever so it would be safe to assume that he was also taken up to heaven.
2 Kings 2:1
1And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. & 11And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.'
A record of one of the bible greats, the prophet named Elijah. This great man of God had a miraculous almost unbelievable ascension; he went in a chariot of fire with horses of fire. Glory, that is so very different and even more astounding in that it all happened in a whirlwind, obviously God used such a dramatic display to draw our attention to heaven and the fact that with God all things are possible. He is the God of the impossible.
Yes our God is sovereign and He can perform His acts just how and when He pleases. The return of Elijah is mentioned in the book of Malachi 4:5
5Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
And in the gospels, one of which is Luke 9:28-34
28And it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, he took Peter and John and James, and went up into a mountain to pray. 29And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment was white and glistering. 30And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias: 31Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem. 32But Peter and they that were with him were heavy with sleep: and when they were awake, they saw his glory, and the two men that stood with him. 33And it came to pass, as they departed from him, Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias: not knowing what he said.
This account of the transfiguration of Jesus records the presence of Elijah and Peter offers to build a tabernacle for the three persons, Jesus, Elijah and Moses. This is a very significant recording of the three in the bible since the death of Moses is recorded in the book of Deuteronomy chapter 34.
5So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD. 6And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Bethpeor: but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day. 7And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.
This account of these facts in Luke 9 and Deuteronomy 34 were the very details which started my journey to search the facts about eternal life. The reason was that I questioned God about the presence of Moses on the mount of transfiguration when the bible says that Jesus is the first fruit of the resurrection. The simple answer is that Moses never died a physical death; I know that when you read the bible the opposite would seem true. His death was a Romans chapter six version. The proof of this fact is found in Hebrews11:24.
24By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; 25Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; 26Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. 27By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible. 28Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them. 29By faith they passed through the Red sea as by dry land: which the Egyptians assaying to do were drowned. 30By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days. 31By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.' Moses was a righteous man and I guess I could write another book on this subject.
Luke 24:51 51And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.
Luke records the ascension of our risen Lord Jesus to the place called heaven. I have recorded these events in this chapter as I feel it is necessary for the reader to understand that heaven is a very real place and that it is a place where flesh and blood does live.
Jesus said to ‘doubting’ Thomas touch me and feel me; I am flesh and blood just like you. He did not do this only because Thomas doubted but also to dispel the myth that flesh and blood cannot enter into heaven.
In the book of Genesis we see that God walked with Adam. This must surely demonstrate that God definitely has no problem with man, or the flesh of man. In fact the problem is man’s iniquity and unrighteousness, the problem that Jesus came to address for us. He said I have not come to judge the world but to save the world, to save that which was lost.
The only thing that was lost was mans’ right to the tree of life in the Garden of Eden by Adam and Eve. Everything that Jesus ever did or has done for us was for our inheritance, everlasting life, transfiguration, translation and ascension.
One sure thing is that every person that has ever died before the great day of the Lord will be raised up to give an account of what he or she has done in the body. The born again spirit filled Christian does not have to see death physically, Jesus said “If you believe.” Do you believe this? The bible gives sufficient evidence to prove that it is possible for man to go to heaven in the physical form; the only two requirements are that you are born again and believe nothing more and nothing less.
Raise The Dead
From the teachings in the bible we learn that God is not the God of the dead but the God of the living. In Ezekiel 33:11
11Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
God says that He has no pleasure in the death of the wicked. The truth is that Jesus died once for all, He took your place and mine; He paid the price in full, why would you then want to see death?
Death is the one subject that gets most people upset for one reason or another, whenever I speak on the subject of eternal life almost every person becomes offended in one way or another. I am not preaching some new fangled doctrine that I have dreamed up, the Lord has revealed the truth to me so I find it very difficult to understand that the average person including Christians still believe that death is inevitable. If that were the truth, then I think that Jesus’ death was totally in vain, but thank God it was not, because Jesus lives forever!
In Mathew 10:7-8 7And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. 8Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.
Jesus instructed His disciples to go and preach the gospel and raise the dead. Most people today see the inside of the church only when they have to attend a funeral and for many others the only time they get into a church is in a coffin. Jesus said we are to raise the dead but the church today is only interested in burying the dead, so what’s going on? Why did Jesus say to raise the dead? God has clearly said that He has no pleasure in him that dies, this is a fact, God said it, I believe it and that settles it for me. The world out there is told to think outside the square and now it’s time for the church to think outside the rectangle, the coffin.
God clearly intended for man to live for eternity and today the average life span is probably in the vicinity of seventy years and yet Jesus was crucified two thousand years ago. Where has the plan failed mankind? I think that Jesus wept for the unbelief of His followers at the funeral of Lazarus and in the garden of Gethsemane.
If He were to return today He would certainly weep for the bride, the church is not any where near ready after so many years. Jesus raised the dead, He also was raised from the dead to fulfil God’s plan for mankind and yet man has not yet got the picture. Unbelief will kill the faith of any man, unbelief is sin, and the wages of sin is death.
Jesus became a sinner for us, yet He had no sin, death is the total of sin. Death is sin. We are told to sin no more; if we are sinless then surely we do not have to die.
This commandment from the Lord to raise the dead was surely given to the church for a specific reason and yet it is one issue that the church and the world out there have not yet learnt to come to terms with.
Praise God for in His time He will reveal all things, I believe that God’s time has arrived and the church is going to begin to move forward in power never before seen on this earth. Unfortunately people can never be expected to believe something they don’t quite understand, but with a love for God and the knowledge of His word wisdom comes with understanding. There are accounts in the Old Testament of the dead being raised and other accounts are given in the New Testament
In the gospels and in the book of Acts 20:9-12.
9And there sat in a window a certain young man named Eutychus, being fallen into a deep sleep: and as Paul was long preaching, he sunk down with sleep, and fell down from the third loft, and was taken up dead. 10And Paul went down, and fell on him, and embracing him said, Trouble not yourselves; for his life is in him. 11When he therefore was come up again, and had broken bread, and eaten, and talked a long while, even till break of day, so he departed. 12And they brought the young man alive, and were not a little comforted.'
Quite clearly, to raise the dead demonstrates all the power and glory of God. Death has lost its sting, there is no power on earth that can defy the power of God in the name of Jesus. This power and authority has been given to the church and yet we see no visible signs or evidence on earth today of the working out of this power and authority. No power no faith; no faith means unbelief is rampant in the lives of the body of Christ on the earth.
In Mark’s gospel chapter 5:35-36
35While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house certain which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further? 36As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.
“Do not be afraid…only believe”. The presence or threat of death will inevitably conjure up fear in the heart of man even more so when faith is lacking, a recent death in a family will give rise to fear in the hearts of those left to grieve as will the results of a sudden loss of a loved one. For this reason Jesus gives assurance and says fear not because He knows His authority in the Father and immediately sets about to raise the dead little girl.
Fear is the most apparent proof of the lack of faith in a person’s life and unbelief will prevent the manifestation of a miracle. For this reason we see in verse forty that Jesus first removed the unbelievers and then performed the miracle which subsequently led to the unbelievers being converted.
40And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying. 41And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise. 42And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.'
In Luke 4:18-19
18The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, 19To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
Jesus is reading from the book of Isaiah and to the religious minded it will not be evident that part of the mission is to raise the dead “to proclaim liberty to the captive.”
In Mathew 10:8
8Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.
The instruction is very explicit “raise the dead” this alone demonstrates the power given to Jesus and to the believer, yet today the church is almost wearing a path to the doctor’s and also the chemist or any other new found healer.
We have to ask ourselves the question, how much faith will Jesus find when He returns? Obviously the church has not made progress with the faith message and all of its trappings as presented from the pulpit today.
Or have we, the “body”, forgotten that we have been called to be warriors in God’s army to deal with an enemy that seeks to destroy faith and the power of the word of God. It seems that we need to re-direct our efforts as a praying church and give more vent to the power of tongues in our worship, religion has made great strides to deny the power of this gift in the church. It sure is a sad day in heaven when the religious spirits start to win the day on earth.
It’s time to stop being clock-watchers in church on a Sunday and time to get intimate with God. Not with the things of the TV cameras, computers and sound systems, which seem to preoccupy ministries nowadays, let’s just get real before our King. When we know our authority in God we will know our ability in God and then we will begin to move in the Spirit and we will not have to wait for the Spirit to move us. When the spirit has liberty to move through the body of Christ then the church will once again begin to build, we have to become an active body.
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2The same was in the beginning with God. 3All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4In him was life; and the life was the light of men. 5And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. 6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. 8He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 9That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. 10He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. 11He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 14And 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. 15John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. 16And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace'
In this passage we see that we are all part of God’s creation and that the Father longs to be with us all day every day of our lives. We have been instructed to raise the dead simply because God is the God of the living not the dead. It is difficult for most people to understand death, least of all for most believers. We are called firstly to obey so that we can avoid the wrath spoken of in John 3:33-36,
33He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. 34For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. 35The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. 36He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.'
Let us first be obedient and get our understanding from the word of God. This is one of the mysteries spoken of in the word, so as we grow in Christ and faith we will find God’s answers to God’s mysteries as promised by God himself.
5And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood'
This refers to Jesus as the first born of the dead, that is He the first to die and the first to be resurrected, after that He descended to hell, got the keys of death and hell and rose to heaven. Verse 18
18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death'.
Confirms that Jesus has the keys to death and hell while at the same time He is the key to heaven, praise God.
We’ve already seen that Jesus was not the first to be raised from the dead but He was the first to be resurrected, there is a vast difference.
With this in mind we see that in John 3:3
3Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Jesus makes reference to the born again experience and in verse fifteen He speaks of eternal life.
15That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16 16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.'
Refers to everlasting life, if you have something that has everlasting life then surely that’s exactly what it is, everlasting. The truth is what Jesus said, if He said its everlasting you better believe it, because it is settled in heaven. Guaranteed! John 4:23-24
23But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
Speaks of the true worshipper, to worship in spirit and truth. Tongues are the evidence of spiritual baptism and the truth is believing every word in the bible, lest we make God out to be a liar, you choose, better you choose life, that will guarantee your righteousness to be as God’s if you believe.
In John 4:48-50 it reads:
48Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe. 49The nobleman saith unto him, Sir, come down ere my child die. 50Jesus saith unto him, Go thy way; thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him, and he went his way.'
And he went his way, let me stop you at this point and ask, which way will you go? Will you be happy to go the way of religion and tradition, will you go the way of the funeral parlour or would you prefer the chariot that took Elijah? Will you believe?
Let us now go to John 6:47-64
47Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. 48I am that bread of life. 49Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. 51I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. 52The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat? 53Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. 57As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. 58This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.
59These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum. 60Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? 61When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? 62What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? 63It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. 64But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.
Now look in this passage how in verse 58 Jesus very plainly says “he who eats this bread shall live forever” that is unconditional. Verse 64 states “but there are some of you who do not believe”
That is so simple, if only we believe. John 8:31-32 promises freedom, 31Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; 32And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
The freedom promised here, if we believe, is something the church is still to realise. The church is still to experience abundant life, a richer life of truth, which brings newness to the word, and one’s perspective of the things of God. The truth about Jesus and the word of God has still to be taught by the church and when it is, the body of Christ will learn to prosper. The body is still to get a vision of the abundant life which Jesus referred to, so that our joy may be made full.
It is all about pleasing God and not man. We have to be prepared to change, for without change there will be no change and there is no time like now, the present. It is not to change for the sake of changing but to change our way of thinking to that of Christ’s.
In John 8:42-47 Jesus asked the question, which the church after 2000 years is still unable to answer.
42Jesus said unto them. If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. 43Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. 44Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. 45And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. 46Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? 47He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.'
He asked “why do you not understand my speech?” He answered the question correctly in verse 45 and further in verses 51-52
51Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. 52Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death.'
He repeated himself and said “he shall never see death.” God is the God of the impossible and with Him all things are possible. The book of John is for me personally one of the most powerful books in the bible, I can almost feel the life emitting from Jesus.
In Chapter 9:3-5
3Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. 4I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. 5As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.'
As He says, we do have some work to do and through Him we can do all things, for in Him we live and move and have our being.
John 10:37-38 says
37If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. 38But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.'
One of the works we are commanded to do is to raise the dead, in John 11:24-26
24Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. 25Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?
A most profound statement, Jesus said whoever lives and believes in him shall never die. Do YOU BELIEVE this? In verse 40 the promise to believers is that we will see the glory of God.
40Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?'
This is only to the believer of the truth, many Christians claim to believe but unfortunately the bible does not say if you believe what you think or what your opinion might be, do you believe every word that proceeds form the mouth of God.
You cannot fool God; the word says that God knows the reigns of our hearts. I cannot understand why it is that people today are just not able to believe for life and not death. I would rather live than die and please God in the process and give Him the glory, for only in living can we glorify Him.
Fortunately the words quoted from John’s gospel are easy to understand and cannot be taken out of context, it is very clearly stated that you shall live and never die. To the carnal mind it might be a little difficult but this simple step of faith requires only two things. First, that you love God with all your heart and mind, and Second, to renew the mind, with the washing of the water of the word, with a willing heart to please the Father.
In John 16:7-15 7Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. 8And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9Of sin, because they believe not on me; 10Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; 11Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged. 12I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. 13Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. 14He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. 15All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
This passage is given to the believer as a final guarantee, and hidden in it we see that there certainly is a whole new realm of life waiting to be discovered by the believer.
Jesus wants to reveal more of himself to the believer but we have to press in, just take a look at the wonderful promises in verses 24-28
24Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full. 25These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father. 26At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you: 27For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God. 28I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father. What more could a child ask for?
I was going to cover chapter seventeen in this part of the book but I have decided to do it elsewhere for reasons I hope will become obvious to the reader.
Death was never intended to be the result of life; death was intended to be the consequence of sin. The purpose behind this book is to take the reader, believer or non-believer, Christian or atheist, along the path to abundant life because God has no pleasure in him that dies. Mark 12:26-27 & 34 quotes the words of Jesus himself stating that God is not the God of the dead but of the living.
26And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? 27He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err. 34And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question.
If one is to study the Old Testament we see that God does have a problem with a dead body, in Numbers 5:2 there is a special instruction for any one who has become defiled by a corpse.
2Command the children of Israel, that they put out of the camp every leper, and every one that hath an issue, and whosoever is defiled by the dead:
Now God said it and not me. I do know that there are other verses relating to this issue but because of the sensitivity to the issue I prefer not to pursue the matter, except to say, study the word to show yourself approved.
First Corinthians 15:12-26
12Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: 14And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. 15Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. 16For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: 17And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. 18Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. 19If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. 20But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 21For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 22For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 23But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 24Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 25For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. & 34 34Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame. & 51-58 51Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 55O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 57But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
These interesting scriptures bring home the many truths, among them is the fact that Christ died and rose again and if we believe not, then He died in vain. Christ died once for ALL and verse 22 says 22For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. The last couple of verses 51-58 speak of the mystery and the victory we have in Jesus Christ.
The mystery is the part that the church has not been able to solve for the last two thousand years, simply because it has failed, and failed miserably to hear the voice of God whose mercies are new every morning. He is also longsuffering and not willing that any should perish but that all should have everlasting life.
John 3:15 states 15That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Immediately a person is born again you have entered into eternal life, life will only cease after the second death spoken of in the book of revelation. Why people have the misconception that when one dies the body will change I cannot understand. The bible prophecies that the dead in Christ will rise first, and then the judgement for what you have done in the body.
Many people are not happy with their bodies in this life and so they think death is the easy way out. This appears to be contradicted by visions that people have had of heaven where other people have been clearly recognised, the appearance has not changed. There will be, I believe, an event in the future that will change the physical body, but until then we have to understand that pain felt is spiritual torment that is why there will be tormenting in hell where all the bad spirits go.
Our focus as Christians has to be on life, if we have the love of God in us we will not be lured into sinful acts and deeds. In fact if you are full of the love of God and full of the spirit of the Lord sin will become unpalatable and the desire therefore will not be present in your life, for where the light is, darkness is dispelled.
I suppose what I am trying to say is that the more of God’s love that is in a person the less desire that person will have for sin or anything that is not of God. Acts a 2:25-28 sums this up very accurately for me, but then that is what the Holy Spirit has shown me.
25For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved: 26Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope: 27Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. 28Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.
A parent can never force a child to love them, love will only flow from a willing heart of a child to the willing heart of the parent. Acts 2:31-35
31He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. 32This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. 33Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear. 34For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, 35Until I make thy foes thy footstool.
We see the ways of life as set out by God, yet man is always, and always has been thinking the ways of death and the plans and things that pertain to death. We are always ready to preach about sin and repentance but how many sermons have you heard lately about eternal life or everlasting life that is not even to mention love or God’s love for man. The Holy Spirit is God’s seal of love in man, what greater gift could we ever need. Jesus said those that love Him are the ones that obey His commandments even to life.
3For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? 4God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged. 5But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man) 6God forbid: for then how shall God judge the world? 7For if the truth of God hath more abounded through my lie unto his glory; why yet am I also judged as a sinner? 8And not rather, (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just. 9What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; 10As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. 12They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. 13Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: 14Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: 15Their feet are swift to shed blood: 16Destruction and misery are in their ways: 17And the way of peace have they not known: 18There is no fear of God before their eyes. 19Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 20Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
This passage sets out the explanation of the law of sin and death, and clearly the end of sin is death. That is to say where there is sin, death will follow, likewise where death has occurred there must have been sin. Remember that all unrighteousness and unbelief is sin. Where there is iniquity there will always be sin, this fact is clearly set out in Romans chapter one. As born again believers we have to realise that through our water baptism we are set free from the law of sin and death (Romans ch.6).
So why do Christians die you might ask? The answer is simply because they do not believe the truth. Jesus said if you believe you will never die. Okay there is a little more to it, that’s why the bible refers to it as a mystery. We are told to study the word of God to show ourselves approved; when we do this we find the keys to holiness and the Father heart of God, righteousness and love. We have to renew the mind as believers and deal with our iniquity. As a believer we will always be having the mental battle to believe and trust in the Lord in all things, we have to learn to rid the conscious and subconscious mind of all evil and negative thoughts, lustful thoughts and any thought that exalts itself against the word of God.
We start by believing the word that says God’s thoughts are only good toward us, that He wants only the best for us at all times and that His only desire is that we should live. Jesus said:
“because I live, you shall also live”. Romans 10:2-4. 2For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. 3For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. 4For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believes.
We have to increase our knowledge of God’s word to know the heart of God, because knowledge with understanding will give us wisdom, God’s wisdom. This is that wisdom that teaches us the will of God and to know His heart and purposes and plans for our lives. The Holy Spirit reveals all this as we grow in our love for God and walk with Him daily. This is borne out in verses 6-11 of this chapter since salvation means ongoing love, joy, peace, patience, prosperity and life free of sin.
6But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) 7Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) 8But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; 9That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
In Romans 12:2
2And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. We read that we are to be transformed by the renewing of the mind, this is a spiritual journey which has to be undertaken hand in hand with God and the Holy Spirit. It is a process to be followed in prayer and fasting accompanied by the reading of the word and those scriptures relevant to the topic. Unless we conform our thoughts to the word of God we will never be able to develop the mind of Christ, which we are told we have. I have to add here that I would much rather have the Mind of Christ than the old rusty one I used to have. With the mind of Christ I can prove. “What is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God”. We have to learn to trust the word of God and the gift of God, our Lord and saviour Jesus.
1 Corinthians 1:9.
9God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. This is our assurance and also Romans 16:25-27. 25Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, 26But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: 27To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen.
To help you to understand what the bible teaches us you have to get the rhema word of 1 Corinthians 1:25-31
25Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. 26For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: 27But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; 28And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: 29That no flesh should glory in his presence. 30But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 31That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. Realising the truth in the foolishness of God. For more help in this regard read: 1 Corinthians 2:4-16.
4And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: 5That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. 6Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: 7But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: 8Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. 10But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. 11For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. 12Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 13Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. 16For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
1 Corinthians 6:14-20 gives us instruction to pure living and the promise of being raptured or taken up in the flesh. 14And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power. 15Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid. 16What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh. 17But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. 18Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. 19What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
In the same book chapter 8:6 we are told that it is through Him that we live. 6But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.
In chapter 15 verses 20-58 we have an explanation as to the principal of sowing and reaping pertaining to the body and spirit with the written guarantee in verse 58.
20But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 21For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 22For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 23But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 24Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 25For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. 27For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. 28And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. 29Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead? 30And why stand we in jeopardy every hour? 31I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. 32If after the manner of men I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantageth it me, if the dead rise not? let us eat and drink; for to morrow we die. 33Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. 34Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame. 35But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come? 36Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die: 37And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain: 38But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body. 39All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds. 40There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. 41There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory. 42So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: 43It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: 44It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. 45And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 46Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. 47The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. 48As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. 49And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. 50Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. 51Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 55O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 57But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
The bible is the lamb’s book of life for planet earth; it begins with life and ends with life, its all about life and living, not about dying. This promise is found in Galatians 3:17-21.17And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot dis-annul, that it should make the promise of none effect. 18For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise. 19Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. 20Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. 21Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.
Further reading can be undertaken in Philippians’ 3:7-21
7But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. 8Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 9And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 12Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. 13Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 15Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. 16Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing. 17Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample. 18(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: 19Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.) 20For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: 21Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself. and 4:8, 8Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
1 Peter 1:4-23
4To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, 5Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: 7That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: 8Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: 9Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. 10Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: 11Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 12Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. 13Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: 15But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; 16Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. 17And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear: 18Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 19But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: 20Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, 21Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God. 22Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: 23Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
And Revelation 1:17-18
17And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: 18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. As well as 2:10-11 & 17. 10Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. 11He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death…….. 17He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it'.
The first three chapters of the book of Revelation repeatedly say to him that overcomes, to be an over comer is to be victorious to share in the same victory as Jesus. Will you be willing to let the gentle Holy Spirit have His way and allow the love of God to bring you to the place of perfection so that you can be holy just as He is?
Every act that Jesus performed was to demonstrate the power that heaven has over death and to show the way to eternal and everlasting life through the red line, that is the blood line. There are two scriptures in the New Testament, which are often misquoted when read, especially from the pulpit. These verses are found in Romans 8:2
2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. And 2Timothy 1:10 10But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: to misrepresent these two verses is to commit an act of high treason in the Kingdom of God, an act which makes a mockery of the death of our Lord on the cross.
Two laws, two choices, better you choose life. You are free from the law of sin and death; Jesus paid the price in full, live your life more abundantly. Timothy says our Saviour Jesus Christ, who ABOLISHED DEATH, and hath brought LIFE and IMMORTALITY to light through the gospel. Are you still living in darkness? Has your light gone out? The bible says He has ABOLISHED death and brought life and immortality, that’s why Jesus said you shall live and never die, but you have to get the right spirit, the Holy Spirit. The same spirit that raised Christ from the dead, the same spirit of everlasting life.
Jesus Is Faith
In the bible Hebrews is known as the book of faith, I have previously twice touched on the subject of Moses’ life because he is also known as the father of faith. Chapter 11:5 of this book says
The very next verse says that without faith it is impossible to please God, 6But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Surely then the only deduction we can make is that the ultimate of faith is when we believe the words Jesus said in John chapter eleven
“that if we believe in Him we shall live and never die”,
if we believed this, would our faith not be pleasing to God? There is no other scripture or statement in the bible contrary to this belief or any other verse to defy the words of Jesus.
If there were any verses contrary to what Jesus said they would prove God to be a liar and we all know that God cannot lie. The only thing that is contrary to this fact is the carnal mind of man, yes the un- regenerated mind, the perverted thoughts of man, iniquity. To reach the full stature of Jesus is to be perfected by the Holy Spirit through Christ in us. This is the message of the gospel of Christ that we as Gods’ children become Christ like, He in us, there is no death in Christ, God is life. Death was never part of God’s plan for mankind. God is the very source of life and life itself, everything that God is stems from life, these are joy, peace, love, power and the list goes on forever.
Hebrews chapter 3:12 reads
12Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
I know that the believer will find a far greater and deeper understanding of God and the word when once the mind is renewed with the word of God. Put on the new man and the carnal mind will be enlightened by the rhema word of life. When a person becomes born again the mind is the only part of our make-up or being that does not automatically become new, that is as the word states all things become new. God in His sovereignty cannot change our mind, that is why he says “better you choose life”, then He goes on in His word in Ephesians 4:23 and tells us to be 23...renewed in the spirit of your mind;
We have the mind of Christ but if we do not use the mind of Christ we will end up with a reprobate mind as described in Romans chapter one.
28And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.'
Sadly the church has not trained up the body in this regard, the teaching of this aspect of knowledge, understanding and wisdom is an area requiring much study by the believer. It is so vital because without it the body lives in denial of the truth and consequently unrighteousness. God can only deliver His promises through righteousness; no other way for God will be Holy.
In Hebrews 8:5 Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle to make it exactly according to the pattern shown on the mount.
5Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.
We are told that we are the temple of the Holy Ghost but have we been taught all things correctly? I don’t believe we have been. Verse 14 of Hebrews chapter 9 instructs us to purge our mind or conscience from dead works, to serve the living God. 14How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
This refers to our thought pattern that always thinks of death as the only end to this physical life on earth. Dead works are found in the mind that believes the body has to die; this is a hard word, the very word that turned the disciples from following Jesus. You cannot escape the truth of the word of God that says “as a man thinketh so is he”. We have been born again of an incorruptible seed, the spirit gives life to the flesh and it shall quicken the mortal body right here on planet earth.
Finally we get to deal with the inevitable question which is always raised by the doubting Thomas’s of this world, the statement made in verse 27
27And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
Oh how the religious spirits love this one almost as if they cannot wait to die. Glory, Jesus has already dealt with both issues of death and judgement; He died once for all, Romans 6:1-11,
1What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: 6Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. 7For he that is dead is freed from sin. 8Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: 9Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. 10For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. 11Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
He dealt with the sin issue and our sinful nature, plus He said “I have not come to judge the world but to save the world.” Hebrews 10:18. 18But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.
Yes the whole world, everyone has been saved the only problem is that many must still accept their salvation.
There is no more offering for sin we have been given a new and living way. Verse 26 states
26For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, let us now grow and live in the truth. Verse 38 says
38Now the just shall live by faith: put the emphasis on live. but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. That’s right, you will not be found pleasing in His sight as was the case with Enoch. Yes the just shall live by faith and not die by faith.
3For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. “Ezekiel 33:15
15If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die. “he shall surely live, he shall not die.” No strings attached.
The bible teaches us that the carnal mind is enmity to God, which is the mind that believes you have to die, for the mind is the seat of your actions; the carnal mind is against God and His word. “Better you choose life” is the commandment given to all mankind. Thou shall not kill. God in His sovereign holiness will not change your mind for you, only you can, to help us he has given the water of the word, His promises for they are all yes and amen. Our prayers for the lost are often times wasted, the world has been saved we should rather prayer the prayer in Colossians 1:9-19 and we will see far greater numbers enter the Kingdom.
9For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; 12Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: 14In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: 15Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 16For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: 17And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. 18And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. 19For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;
The end of faith is God’s mercies and thank God His mercies are new every morning. Jesus said unless we eat of His body and drink of His blood we have no life in us. Jesus also taught us to thank God every day for our daily bread. If we walk in our priesthood we will break bread daily, just as the Levitical priests did, not with the focus on the issues of sin but in remembrance of what Jesus said that you have no life in you. In remembrance of His coming again and with a heart of thanks for the life in the body and the blood. Thankful for the everlasting life, life eternal, world without end.
Paul drew the analogy in the book of Ephesians chapter five between Christ the body, the bride and the church as man and wife. Today many Christians believe that when Jesus returns it will be for His bride the church, in fact this is not the case, the church is not the bride. While we are on planet earth the church is the body of Christ and if, or when it gets to heaven it will become the bride of Christ. I say "if" because the present state of the body, the church, is not anywhere near ready for the raisingup. It still has to reach the state of being perfected; this is according to the words of Jesus and not a newfound theology. A church full of labels and secret agendas, is not the body or bride that will ever get to robe itself with the white robes of righteousness for the wedding feast of the lamb.
The many labels of religion which presently cause the divisions in the body such as mainline, Pentecostal/charismatic type churches, not to mention other cultic and humanistic types which are slowly eroding the church leaves the body with much soul searching and the disciple with plenty of work. Any church with a religious thrust is automatically excluded or disqualified by default from inclusion in the body of Christ by the verse in Romans 8:9 which says
9But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
Jesus said in John 3:7.
7Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
A bride and bridegroom in God's eyes will only marry; become one, when there is true love, the foundation of any lasting union. This meets the commandment, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. Mathew 22:37.
This was the first of the commandments; if it were the only yardstick for the present day church then sadly it would be fair to say that the church has failed miserably. The invitation is not to the mad-hatters tea party but the marriage supper of the lamb, the King of Kings.
2The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, 3And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. 4Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. 5But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: 6And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. 7But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. 8Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. 9Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. 10So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. 11And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: 12And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. 13Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 14For many are called, but few are chosen.
In the gospel of Matthew chapter 22 Jesus tells the parable of a king who made a marriage feast for his son, a warning is given in verse five which reads as follows; "but they made light of it and went their ways”, in verse eight it reads “the wedding is ready but they which were bidden were not worthy."
The parable ends in verse fourteen with "for many are called but few (make the choice, or few) are chosen." The only label which will be acceptable in heaven will be the born again spirit filled heart. Being born again is only the beginning of salvation and not the end of repentance.
31When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
This refers to the white throne judgement which all mankind must face, God's children need not fear this but should have the confidence in our faith works and the knowledge of our Father and the peace of the spirit and love of God to know that we will be found blameless on this great occasion. How do we know? We know by the promises of our heavenly Father. There are many different theories and theologies in churches today, to the extent that the body has hardly any faith to get out of bed each day to face the mundane issues of life, let alone to believe God for basic healing miracles. It is no wonder that Jesus asked if he will find faith when He returns.
In Revelation 19:7 we read as follows:
7Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
A couple of points are raised here and these are the following: The verse states that the wife has made herself ready, the church is no longer referred to as the body or bride but only now becomes the wife. This indicates a state of divine intimacy and the readiness has resulted from the scripture
12Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Philippians 2:12.
The instruction recorded in Revelation 19:5 after the judgement and referred to in verse two, indicates that a certain number and sequence of events have to first take place in heaven before the wife is ready.
5And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. And 2For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.
These events are not limited to chapter nineteen only but rather there are many future events prophesied in the whole book of Revelation. This brings us to the next point; only after a certain set sequence of events does the bride now enter the gates of eternity. In summary then it would be quite safe to assume that a lot still has to take place before the wife is ready.
The word "ready" is the one that causes me most concern since I do not believe that the body of Christ the "church" is anywhere near to being close to the benchmark or any state of readiness. The word "rejoice" in verse five is spoken to those that fear Him; this is the benchmark, those that fear Him, the Lord our God. I do not see any of the Holy fear in the church today even less faith.
Proverbs 1:7 teaches that
7The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
God's judgements are all in righteousness and we as the body have to learn firstly to love God and know Him. This comes through obedience that is obeying all the laws, statutes and commandments.
Seven times in the first three chapters of Revelation we are told to listen to what the Spirit says to the church.
The unfortunate reality is that hardly any preaching is done under the anointing of the Holy Spirit nowadays. This is the reason for the decline in church numbers and the waning love for the things of the Kingdom of God.
Jesus said my words are life, without the anointing of the Spirit they are doctrine. We have all had the invitation to the Lamb's wedding, this was made possible through the cross and yet many have rejected the opportunity to become born again.
Religion can carry a large portion of the blame for this. Jesus has thrown down the challenge in Revelation 22:7 He said
7Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.
This refers to the whole bible from cover to cover, Genesis to Revelation. We have to learn to pay attention to detail if we wish to grow in maturity in Christ.
Thessalonians 4:16-17 16For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. The word "alive" in verse 17 means those quickened by the Holy Spirit, the dead in Christ shall rise first. God is not the God of the dead but of the living, He is the living God and He is coming for a living church. He is coming for a body without spot or blemish. The church has to begin to understand that when the bible speaks of eternal life it means what it says eternal life. Eternal life is usually understood to be for the spirit being only; if that is the case then surely we can believe that everlasting life is for the human being. The death of Jesus on the cross. had to make a lasting difference in the world and this difference was to be everlasting life. Life without sin was made possible through a new and living way, through His flesh.
Feed My Sheep
When Jesus returned to the earth after His resurrection and ascension He appeared to His Disciples on the beach and prepared a breakfast for them, this He did before His final departure and He asked Peter three times whether he loved Him. Each time He replied to Peter, “feed my sheep.” Many a wonderful sermon has been preached on this day and time in Jesus’ ministry, and these words of love. I have never heard a sermon on the feeding aspect, Jesus was emphasising the importance of food, why is it then that the church is starved of spiritual food? The point is Jesus wanted the disciples to continue the daily routine of breaking bread because firstly that is the reason for His death. Secondly it is essential for the Christian to daily partake of the bread and wine.
In 1 Corinthians chapter eleven we are warned to not partake of the Lord’s body unworthily. We are told that we are to properly discern the Lord’s body if we are to live, otherwise we are merely drinking damnation to ourselves, “for this reason many of you are sick and indeed sleep” (die). Do you wonder why the church is dying to get to heaven? Jesus said “because I live, you shall also live”. The manner in which the church celebrates this wonderful meal is worse than the strange fire that was offered by the priests sons, they died at the alter.
If we believe the truth about the bread and the wine we would partake daily in our homes with celebration and joy and that not with a stale crumb and miniature glass of a drop of watered down wine or juice. We should not be praying prayers of death but prayers of thanksgiving for life and life everlasting. Jesus said, “Unless you eat of my body and drink of my blood you have no life in you.” If you believe this you would not settle for a crumb and a thimble of wine, the Lord’s table is a feast, not a display of poverty and mockery, not for strangers, the non born again, lest you share their damnation. The Lord’s Table is not a religious duty of repentance but a celebration of life, new life, and eternal life.
The precious blood is part of the new and LIVING way through the veil, the flesh of Jesus Christ. That is why Jesus refused to partake and said in Luke 22:16. 16For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. Jesus the perfect offering could not and would not eat of the offering, His body. Jesus is not a spiritual cannibal, besides He said “if you eat of my body you shall never die”, He was still to go to Calvary at that stage. Jesus could not eat of His sacrifice because it was to be life for generations to come, it was to be the food with which to feed His people, the perfect gift for us from our Father in heaven. This was not to be the miracle to feed five or seven thousand; this was the miracle to feed nations forever so that they could live forever, everlasting life.
We the body of Christ cannot continue to make a mockery of this feast in the church, we have to put and end to this drinking of damnation and death, we have to repent and turn from this sinful practice. We have to preach the truth about the bread of life and begin to live in the power of the new life. We the church have to get it right here on earth otherwise we will never be given the chance to make right in heaven, we have been given the truth and told to sin no more. So much more needs to be taught to bring truth and power back to the church; it is time for the renaissance to begin. Now faith is.
The Sermon Jesus Will Preach On His Return
I would like to begin this message with a verse from the book of Revelation chapter 2:7 which reads 7He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. I begin with this verse because it is the first promise of a reward for the overcomer on arrival in heaven, the promise made by Jesus to the church and in particular the church at Ephesus. It is important to note that the overcomer will have a spiritual ear and would have heard the voice of what the Spirit has said. This has to be stressed for two main reasons; one is that it is of utmost importance for the Christian to develop an ear to hear the voice of God and secondly to learn to listen to the voice and obey. It is one thing to hear the voice of God but entirely another ball game to listen and obey.
Much is being preached and taught today without the anointing, Jesus said my words are Spirit and life, without the anointing the word is doctrine and will never be life changing. That is the reason why I believe we have a body that is anorexic and dehydrated, a body ready to die, but praise God the word of life will bring restoration and new life to a dying church. God is not about to do a new thing; He said “I am the Lord your God and I change not.” The church has to do the new thing; the church has to get a new vision, for without a vision my people perish, as well as a new revelation of God and His word. The word of truth. The church has to clear out 2000 years of old sermons and teachings, which have brought death and not life to the body of Christ. They have brought deception and not the truth, sickness and not healing, bitterness and not love. God said the truth shall prevail and not the gates of hell.
Eternal life is one subject that has been neglected by the church for so long that it will take a mighty renaissance by the Holy Spirit to bring the reality of Jesus’ death on the cross to a church buried in theology and tradition. With God all things are possible, turn with me now if you will to Revelation 14:6 which reads as follows: 6And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, You see church there is a gospel out there that has not yet been preached; it’s the gospel of life and truth, the everlasting gospel of life, the gospel of God’s plan for His creation. A plan revealed by truth and the Holy Spirit a plan God is about to reveal to the church, a plan locked in prophecy for two thousand years. This will enable the body to be victorious in these last days and God will be glorified, no longer will man get the glory in the pulpit.
Sadly the church has been groping in the dark and wallowing in self-pity but God is about to expose the light and the truth. God is about to reveal His true love and not the type of love that religion has tainted and blemished, I am talking the God kind of love.
I said eternal life is one subject, which has been neglected, especially from the pulpit and by the telly-evangelists. My experiences have been that people seem to prefer death rather than everlasting life; there is this perception out there that it is better to die and go to heaven for any number of reasons. The pitiful truth is that the opposite is true; my bible says that “God has no pleasure in him that dieth”.
Most people go to churches today for funerals, if not most church services have become like funerals, God gave orders to get the dead out of the camp anyone touching a dead body would become defiled in God’s eyes. That is the truth that is what God said, God cannot be glorified in death. God is glorified in life; the truth is that you are no good to the cause of the gospel lying in a coffin six feet under: That is the harsh reality. Having said that, the church has to learn to stand up for the truth and move in the power of the anointing and move on in victory.
Any teaching short of eternal and everlasting life is dead religion. The church has to be able to quote Revelation 12:11 without flinching, the scripture reads as follows;
11And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. This will be the final and ultimate yardstick for the church.
Proverbs 11:30 says
30The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise'.
I have quoted this verse to demonstrate the need for the tree of life in our lives. God has always provided fruit or food for our souls and the key to discovering this is the very basis for a successful Christian life.
Allow me at this stage to point out that the only benchmark for a successful Christian life is found in Hebrews chapter 11:5 & 6, reading as follows; 5By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God. 6But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. You must believe that He is life and life everlasting. Jesus asked the question in John 11:26, 26And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? He asked do you believe? We will cover that verse later but first we must take a look at what God said in the beginning.
This word that I am sharing is not some new found doctrine or theology, it is the pure word of the gospel of Jesus Christ, it is the gospel that Jesus taught His disciples. This gospel was the turning point in the life of some of His disciples and John 6:66 says from that time many of His disciples went back and walked no more with Him.
66From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. 67Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away?
You see the light dispels the darkness, this gospel is for those that choose to walk the walk and talk the talk, and those who are prepared to hear the voice of God and listen and persevere in truth. You have to study the word of God, He said if you seek me you will find me and when you find me then you will know me. Are you prepared to walk with God, not just to become another God chaser but a God seeker.
In the beginning God said to Adam:
16And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: 17But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
This was the first commandment given by God in Genesis 2:16-17 Further in Genesis 4:22 God said
“behold the man is become as one of us to know good and evil; and now lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever.”
We know the rest is history, but the fact that we have to see in this passage, is that it is possible to live forever. God’s original plan for man.
Secondly it was the change in the mind of man, Adam, that lost man the right to eat from the tree of life, and man’s mind became carnal. The only thing lost in the garden was the right to the tree of life; the tree of knowledge caused the mind of man to become perverted and changed his heart.
The only change was the mind of man and sadly man has not yet decided to change his mind and believe the word and promises of God. Pride and vanity is the order of the day but thank God for His son Jesus who came to change that for mankind - if you believe.
Let us now look at some of the statements made by Jesus himself, these verses refer to eternal life and everlasting life, please remember these are the words of Jesus and not my own.
As Christians we have to remember that the day we became born again is the day that we stepped into eternal life, that’s the day we stepped into eternity. For most of us John 3:16 is a very well known verse in which Jesus said:
16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. In John 4:14 14But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. In John 5:24 24Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. in verse 39 39Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. In John 6:35 35And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. and finally in verses 50-51 50This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. 51I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
In chapter 11:5 of the same book Jesus asks the question “whoever lives and believes in me will never die, do you believe this?” This is the question the church needs to answer today. The disciples said this is a hard word, say what you like, Jesus said it, I believe it and that settles it for me.
For the church today this is a very hard word to believe but remember Jesus is the way the truth and the life, the church has to find the way.
To hope in vain will not bring the church to maturity or allow it to live in victory and receive all the promises and blessings promised by God in His word. The church needs to learn to love God with all the mind as well as body soul and strength. The church needs to learn to renew the mind with the water of the word and to walk with God to obey all His commandments, statutes, laws and precepts. The church needs to learn to rid itself of unrighteousness and iniquity so that its members can learn justice and righteousness and so that our faith might be pleasing to God the Father. This is the bride that Jesus is looking for, a bride clothed in white, a bride without spot or wrinkle.
I have highlighted a couple of passages so that you can get the picture of what Jesus is relating to concerning eternal life. I have also spoken very briefly about death so I will now highlight a few verses that relate to what God says about death. We have to remember the bible is all about living, the church today is dying to get to heaven, and Jesus said “I have come that you might have life more abundantly”.
In all my church going days as a youngster in the Anglican Church I never got to hear the message of salvation for twenty-one years. For twenty-one years as a Christian in Pentecostal churches I have never heard the truth about everlasting life.
We have to understand love, truth, iniquity and righteousness, the mind and God’s laws of the Sabbath to fully enter in the ways of eternal life. Deuteronomy 30:19 reads:
19I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: The next verse says we are to cleave unto Him for He is our life. 20That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him: for he is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.
God has given us a choice and He said we are to choose life that is the challenge given to us by God. The sad reality is that most people choose death, ask, you will find out every one will say you have to die. Is that the truth, and is God a liar?
In Numbers 19:11 we are told
11He that toucheth the dead body of any man shall be unclean seven days Ezekiel 37 verse 12-14 12Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. 13And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, 14And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.
God says He will open the grave to bring forth the dead and put His spirit in them and they shall live. Jesus commanded us to raise the dead, yet the church finds it acceptable to bury the dead. In chapter 18 of Ezekiel verse 28 God says
28Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. Ecclesiastes 9:3-4 3This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event unto all: yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead. 4For to him that is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion. This speaks of the evil in the sons of man and not the sons of God.
Malachi 2:5 here we see that God openly declares the covenant to be one of life and peace.
5My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name.
In Ezekiel 18:32 God says very plainly 32For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.
Now let me ask the question, who has been lying to the church for the last 2000 years? Why has the church struggled without power for 2000 years? Who has been interpreting the word of God incorrectly for the last 2000 years? Numbers 23:19 says
19God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
Deuteronomy 3 21:3-4 says He is a God of truth, without iniquity, just and right is He. These are only a few of the verses that deal with death from God’s perspective.
The question every believer will ask is this, what about Hebrews 9:27 which says
27And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
My answer is read Romans chapter 6 properly and make sure you get the Holy Spirit to give you the correct interpretation with the spirit of enlightenment so that you get the Rhema word. A further look at the scriptures which Jesus used referring to life, I’m sure will make the point.
25He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.
Chapter 14:19 He said
19Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
In chapter 17:2
2As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.
Verse 31 of chapter 20 he says 31But 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.
Remember the verse 26 in chapter 11
26And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? Do you believe this?
In Mathew’s gospel chapter 8:13 13And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour. “As thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee”.
You now have the evidence, the words of God, Jesus and men, who will you, believe? Do you think the death of Jesus was in vain, that is without mentioning the bread and wine, the baptism of water and the gift of the Holy Spirit? If you do not believe the words of Jesus, then I suggest you stop playing church and not go to church any longer, because at the end of the day you are only wasting your own time.
God hears the prayers of the righteous. You will die in the wilderness for without faith it is impossible to please God. The just shall live by faith and not die by faith. Only by the grace and mercy of God do we live, unless we are righteous before God, in His righteousness, we will never be pleasing to God.
Does the bible not say that Jesus died once for all, that through one man sin entered the world, and through the death of one man, Jesus, we might all live.
The iniquity in man, the carnal mind is the only reason for our unbelief. We have been instructed to renew our mind. Why is this so? The reason is that the mind is the only part of man that has not been made new; we have to renew the mind to bring it in line with the word and promises of God’s word.
We are told to love the Lord with our entire mind, know ye not that ye have the mind of Christ. All things are new in Christ Jesus but we have to learn to use and exercise our minds to develop them, through love, into the mind of Christ with the word of truth. To obey the voice of God does not require so much obedience but rather love. If you love God with all your heart you will automatically obey. This is where the Sabbath laws fit in and if we are to prosper and grow in love then surely we have to pay attention to the Sabbath, not out of religious duty but out of love.
If you believe that God wants you DOA in heaven then I believe you’ve missed the point of Calvary. If you believe that one must die to go to heaven then why does every one walk around looking so miserable, with faces like prunes? Especially when they think and believe that they are going to meet with their “maker”. If you still want to believe that death is essential then I suggest you get on your knees tonight and tell Jesus that you think He wasted His time on the cross because the power of His blood cannot save you, since the end of sin is death.
Death is the sum total of sin, the wages of sin is death, the bible says go and sin no more, a mind of flesh that lusts after death is sinful. Jesus has overcome death; He says He gives us life and life more abundantly. The will of God is that none should perish but that all should have life everlasting. Revelation speaks of times when man will want to die to escape the wrath of the Lord, and they will not be able to die.
The power of life and death is in the tongue, get powered up now, get your mind changed and renewed, get the word of God and live. The Garden of Eden had the tree of life, Jesus said “I am the bread of life”, Revelation 21 speaks of the tree of life, none of this is symbolic, it is for a purpose and that purpose is life. They are there to feed the soul life to keep the spirit man alive. God does not do anything symbolically; it is all part of His plan and purpose for man to live forever. Repent and turn to the Lord for why will you die O Israel. Amen.
The Prayer Of Jesus
The book of John chapter seventeen deals with the issue of eternal life and is a record of the prayer which Jesus prayed to the Father. The Father being God the spirit and Jesus prayed that we might become one in Him, the spirit of life and power eternally over all flesh. Jesus also prayed that we might know God, not superficially, but that we might know God intimately. Jesus said that He has manifested God’s name to us so that we might keep the word in us. The name Jehovah, our provider of life, that our joy might be full. That we be kept from evil and sanctified by the truth, for the word is truth, Jesus says He is sanctified that we may be sanctified and He is praying for those that will come to believe through our words.
The prayer is that we may be made perfect so that we will know the perfect love of God the Father. The very last line of this chapter is a declaration of the love that God has placed in us through Christ Jesus. If we have such a great deposit in us, that is all power and authority in heaven, then who can be against us? Do we not have the same power over death? I believe the only reason that Jesus died for us was so that we could have this wonderful inheritance as heirs in the kingdom of God.
There is no other reason for this. The Father’s love having been bestowed upon us, His children who are called by His name, Christians. I defy anyone to prove me wrong, it is time to do away with all the religious garbage and theology, let us rather believe the words of Jesus who died in our place because they are the words of truth and life.
Acts chapter 13 verse 46 reads as follows:
46Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.
Are we the church guilty of committing the same perjury as the Israelites? Eternal life is for the spirit being, everlasting life is for the human being that truly believes every word that proceeds from the Father. Amen.
The Tree Of Life
Proverbs 11:30 declares
30The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise'
We are to be planted in the house of God so that we might have the right to the tree of life according to the book of Revelation chapter 2 verse 7 7He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
We know the way to the tree is through Jesus, but man was denied the right to the tree of life in the Garden of Eden, but while we are on planet earth we do need the right food “to go”, the bread of life. This is the key to a powerful Christian life coupled with genuine repentance and the renewing of our mind so that we turn to our God, the God of the living and wait patiently for the true higher calling. The trumpet sound, which we will all hear at His second coming, this is the only promise and hope of our future glory in Christ.
Dear Brother and Sister
We are called to persevere in the truth with love and patience. My prayer is that this book will encourage and help you to see the pathway to glory as the Holy Spirit leads you into His presence. I cannot do it for you, but you can study the word to show yourself approved as you lean not on your own understanding.
Trust in God and the Holy Spirit will give life and Rhema to the word and Jesus will keep His promises, His words of life. You have to do your part, DO YOU BELIEVE THIS?