God’s Greatest Desire

What is God’s greatest desire?

God made us from Him.

When God wanted something, He spoke to what He wanted it to come out of or to come from. So when God wanted something He spoke to whatever He was making to be sustained by and to return to. God created some things and He made some things.

According to the theological definition of create, we really don’t create, as humans, that is. We only make. The theological definition of create is: To form something out of nothing. In other words, God said, “Let there be light.” And there was light. To make something is to make something else. That is all we do.

If we make a vase out of clay, we did not speak it into existence, we made it out of something else. So God created some things and He made some things. He made some things from something and that’s very important for us to understand.

Genesis 1:11 – Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit trees that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself, on the earth”; and it was so. God did not say, “Let there be trees!” He was making them, forming them from dirt. He was speaking to the earth, and when He spoke to the earth, the earth listened. He told the earth to “bring forth.” God wanted plants to come from dirt, be sustained by dirt, and to return to the dirt.

Genesis 1:20 – Then God said, “Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens.”

Genesis 1:24 – Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind:… Sustained by the dirt that produces the food and goes back to the dirt when they die. 

This is all-important because of verse 26. When God wanted man, He spoke to Himself! Genesis 1:26 – Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness;”… We came from “God!” We are sustained by God and return back to God.

Don’t misunderstand: God made our bodies from the dirt, is sustained by dirt and goes back to dirt, but our spirit came from God, is sustained by God and goes back to God.

What would happen if a plant said to the dirt, “I’m pulling out and I’m going to go make it on my own!”” It would die. Man said to God, “I’m pulling out!” God said, “The day you do you’ll die!” Adam’s body didn’t die immediately because his body came from dirt, but his spirit died and his spirit affected his body. Same with us. Adam began to physically die as well. Look at this Scripture: Ephesians 2:1 – And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,… 

John 10:10 – … “I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly.”

Don’t just focus on the second part of that verse. Jesus came that we might have “Life!” We are dead without Him! God made us from Him.

God made us like Him.

God made a replica of Himself. God made Adam in His image after His likeness. No sin in the world at that point. Adam walks like God, talks like God and thinks like God, never had an impure thought. And then Adam has a desire of his own:

Genesis 2:20 – So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam, there was not found a helper comparable to him.

Adam was looking for a helper or the Bible wouldn’t have mentioned it. Adam was looking for a companion. Why would the Bible say “There was not found,: if he wasn’t looking?

The Hebrew word used for “formed” man is “squeezed.” The Hebrew word used for “formed” woman is “fashioned.” The word “woman” in Hebrew means “Out of man.” So God made a woman out of man.

But how did God know that the only thing that would satisfy Adam’s heart’s desire was a bride? God knew because He’s had the same desire! Make sense? God’s greatest desire is “You!”

God made us to love Him.

The church, the believers, are the Bride of Christ! Adam and Eve, a marriage, and Christ and the church, His Bride. God’s greatest desire is not to be worshipped, it’s to be loved. To love and be loved, but worship is a pathway to express our love to God.

God is a giver, that’s His nature. So God cannot receive without giving. If it comes in, it’s going to go back out. If we touch God, He touches us back. This is why it’s so important to make a connection to God.

When a person goes to a service at the house of God and says that they didn’t get anything out of it, it’s because they made no effort to give anything. If we’ll touch God in worship, He’ll touch us in worship. Worship is simply expressing our love to the One we are married to.

God has a “heart-cry” throughout the whole Bible and here are just a few Scriptures:

Exodus 6:7 – “I will take you as My people, and I will be your God.”

Leviticus 26:12 – “I will walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people.”

Jeremiah 7:23 – “But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be My people.’ “

Jeremiah 11:4 – “So shall you be My people, and I will be your God.”

Jerimiah 24:7 – “Then I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the LORD; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God.”

Jeremiah 31:33 – “I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” 

Ezekiel 14:11 – “that the house of Israel may no longer stray from Me, nor be profaned anymore with all their transgressions, but that they may be My people and I may be their God, says the LORD God.”

Ezekiel 36:28 – “Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your Fathers; you shall be My people, and I will be your God.”

Hosea 2:23 – “Then I will say to those who were not My people, ‘You are My people!’ And they shall say, ‘You are my God!’ ” (God was talking about the Gentiles.)

2 Corinthians 6:16 – “I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.”

All through the Bible, the theme is the same: God wants us to be His people and Him our God. His greatest desire is YOU! He’s worked out all of the details through His grace so that we simply say, “Yes!”

And all of our sins are washed away, as far as the east is from the west. He puts a new heart within us and a new spirit, and writes His law on our minds and hearts and gives us the ability to walk with Him to be His bride!

 

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Satan’s Greatest Desire

If we understand what Satan’s greatest desire is, we can understand what warfare is all about. But, let’s start with:

What was Satan’s desire before his fall?

This is before the fall of man. This is when Satan was in heaven when his name was Lucifer and before the creation of the world. Satan made five “I will” statements and all of these statements have to do with being “lifted up,” being seen, being high.

Isaiah 14:12 – “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations! (Verse 13) For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above all the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation on the farthest sides of the north;

(Verse 14) I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.’ (Verse 15) Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, to the lowest depths of the Pit.

God listed what was Satan’s heart desire; exalted, lifted up, high, worshipped, and like God the Most High. What’s hard to believe is that this is the nature that we are born with. Yes, we are born with a sin nature like Adam, but Adam was not the original sinner, Lucifer was. And that nature is “Look at me!”

Before we come to Christ, the most important person in our lives is us. Even after we are born again, we still have some residue of that nature. Example: Who is the first person you look for in a group picture?

However, when we become born again, we become like Christ and Christ is always turning the attention onto the Father or the Holy Spirit. But when the Holy Spirit comes He testifies about Jesus and the Father lifts up the Son! The more we become like Christ the more we want to focus the attention on Jesus.

Isaiah 14:11 – “Your pomp is brought down to Sheol, and the sound of your stringed instruments; The maggot is spread under you, and worms cover you.”

Isaiah 14 was a prophecy given to the king of Babylon, but we know that God is addressing Lucifer. God was speaking to the spirit behind the man. Remember when Jesus said to Peter, “Get behind me Satn.”? Jesus was talking to the spirit behind the man.

Now, here’s a prophecy given to the prince of Tyre: Ezekiel 28:11 – Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, (Verse 12) “Son of man, take up a lamentation for the king of Tyre, and say  to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. (Verse 13) You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: (The king of Tyre was never in Eden, so we know this is talking about Satan, the spirit behind the man.) The sardius, topaz, and diamond, Beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold. The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created. 

(Verse 14) “You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; you were on the holy mountain of God; you walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. (Verse 15) You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you. (Verse 16) “By the abundance of your trading you became filled with violence within, and you sinned; therefore I cast you as a profane thing out of the mountain of God; and I destroyed you, O covering cherub, from the midst of the fiery stones.”

The workmanship of your timbrels: Timbrels means a percussion instrument. And your “pipes,” wind instruments. Isaiah 14 says, “and your stringed instruments.” All musical instruments fall into one of these three categories. Lucifer was created with instruments in his body. He was to lead worship in heaven.

However, God then says Lucifer became violent by his “trading,” “merchandizing.” Merchandizing in Hebrew is when something is supposed to pass through one person’s hands and then to the rightful owner. But when the Scripture says “trading” in this verse, it was saying, “Lucifer kept some of the praise and worship for himself instead of it all passing to the rightful owner – God!”

That was Lucifer’s sin: He wanted to be worshipped. He felt like he deserved it and was entitled to it, but God said, “You’re out!” God did this so fast that Jesus said, “I saw Satan fall like lightning!”

Why? Because God is the only One worthy to be worshipped and Satan stole what didn’t belong to him! So Satan’s greatest desire was to be worshipped!

So what is Satan’s desire now?

Matthew 4:8 – Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the word and their glory. (Verse 9) And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”

Satan tries to get even the Son of God to worship him, so his desire is still the same – to be worshipped! Not only did Satan want Jesus to worship him, but he wanted Him to express it by falling down in front of him in an act of worship.

Worship is always expressed. Love is always expressed also. If we love someone, we express it. If people can express their excitement about a ballgame, they certainly can get excited about being saved from an eternal hell. Satan doesn’t want us to express our love for God or anyone else for that matter. Satan not only wants to be worshipped but he wants to stop every person on this earth from worshipping God!

What will be Satan’s greatest desire in the future?

Revelation 13:4 – So they worshipped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshipped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?”

Go read the Song of Moses in Exodus 15, where Marium sings a song and these two lines are in it: “Who is like our God? Who is able to make war with HIm?” (Exodus 15:11) However, in the end, times, people are singing this about Satan.

Revelation 17:13 – “These are of one mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast. (Verse 14) “These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called chosen and faithful.” 

In Lucifer’s description, the Bible says that he was covered with precious stones and precious stones reflect light. He was supposed to reflect the precious light to all of heaven.

Did you know we were created with instruments in our bodies? Stringed instruments – vocal cords. Wind instruments – wind passes through the vocal cords to make a sound. Percussion – we can clap with our hands. All these were created to worship the One True God! And the precious stones, we as the children of God are to reflect our precious King. God didn’t need Satan anymore to be a worship leader, He created man to worship Him!

 

Springs Of Water

Isaiah 41:18 – I will open rivers in desolate heights and fountains in the midst of valleys; I will make the wilderness a pool of water and the dry land springs of water.

There is a natural fulfillment when we look at Israel because it’s a garden in the middle of a desert. Every single nation around it is a desert! Isaiah prophesied this and God did it for Israel. Israel is 60% desert and yet supplies water not only for their own but for the Palestinians and the Jordanians. Also, they export billions of dollars worth of vegetables a year that flourishes on that water supply.

However, there is also a spiritual fulfillment as well. Once we are saved, we don’t have to live in a dry wilderness anymore.

Isaiah 58:11 – “You shall be like a water garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.” Jeremiah 31:12 – “their souls shall be like a well-watered garden.”

God doesn’t have any problem providing water for His people, naturally or spiritually. Moses spoke to rock in the wilderness and water came rushing out of it. The New Testament tells us that the Rock he spoke to was Christ, and it followed them.

1 Corinthians 10:4 – For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ. We don’t have to live in a dry land even though we live in a fallen world. We can live in a river of living water.

Jesus Brought The Holy Spirit

He didn’t bring just a spring, He brought the river. In this next passage of Scripture, the Bible is talking about the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles. Jeremiah 14:16 – And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. (Verse 17) And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, on them there will be no rain.

On the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles, they would pray for rain and for the Messiah to come. They knew what Isaiah had written and Isaiah had said that when the Messiah comes, He will turn the desert into a pool.

So the day they are praying for water, rain, and the Messiah in the New Testament, Jesus does this: John 7:37 – On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. (Jesus is at the temple where they are praying for the Messiah to come and rain to come.) (Verse 38) “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” (Verse 39) But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified.

Jesus came so that we could have a dynamic, powerful, river in us, flowing through us, and out of us, and His name is the Holy Spirit!

The Holy Spirit Is Not Weird

People think the Holy Spirit is weird because people are weird, not Him. If you’ve been going to church for a while, we all have seen weird people do some weird things and they say,” The Holy Spirit led me to do it!” No, they more than likely just wanted to draw attention to themselves, weird. My question is: If these people are not looking for attention, then why do they go to the front of the congregation to do their “weird” thing? Why not do it in the back of the church instead of the front? “Because they are weird and want everybody to see them.

John 16:12 – “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. (Verse 13) However, when He, the Spirit of truth has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”

That should settle all debate on whether the Holy Spirit speaks or not! Jesus Himself said He speaks! He will guide us into all truth because He knows all truth.

So don’t let someone tell you when you see them acting out of character of the Holy Spirit running around, jumping on chairs and acting crazy, that is the Holy Spirit guiding and leading them because it does not glorify God and that’s all them!

Think about this: We have Someone living on the inside of us who knows everything there is to know about everything! And He has committed Himself to be our teacher. Ask Him whatever you want and He will tell you and show you. If a person will not talk to the Holy Spirit, its because they don’t see Him as a person and that personal relationship with the Holy ‘Spirit then they don’t see Him as a person. The Holy Spirit should never, ever, be referred to as an It!

Let The River Flow

James 3:7 – For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. (Verse 8) But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

Our hope is, “The Holy Spirit” can tame the tongue. There is a gift that requires us to yield our tongue to the Holy Spirit.

There is a “gift” of tongues and a “grace” of tongues. Everyone that is filled with the Holy Spirit can pray in tongues. The gift of tongues is public and the grace of tongues is private. Its the prayer language.

The gift of tongues can only be done when unbelievers and uninformed people are “not” present in a gathering (1 Corinthians 14). And it has to be interpreted. Read the whole chapter. Paul explains that if an unbeliever comes into the church and the people are speaking in tongues, “will they not think they are out of their mind?”

However, a “prayer language” is for every believer. The Bible says that praying in tongues will build a person up. It strengthens us, edifies us. But praying in tongues is “voluntary.”

1 Corinthians 14:14 – For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful. (Verse 15) What is the result then? I will pray with the Spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the Spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.

Praying in the Spirit, tongues, is not uncontrollable. You can control it. Why would Paul give instructions about how and when to pray in tongues if we couldn’t control it or when and how we do it? We have a choice whether to pray in tongues or not. A person is not going to be out in public one day and just bust out in tongues. It is controlled by you. We can have the gift of teaching, but we control when and where we teach, it is the same thing.

When we pray in the Spirit, it will cause our sensitivity to be more affluent. We will be able to see how a situation will end up. The river will start flowing. I don’t know how anyone can read 1 Corinthians Chapter 14, and not know that “Praying in the Spirit” is “Praying in tongues.” This is a gift from God and a way for all Christians to build themselves up!

 

How Do We Forgive?

Image of spirit leaving the body

Hatred and unforgiveness are tied together. Are we to forgive those who have trespassed against us unjustly? I realize that some people are just impossible to get along with, but how do we forgive those that call themselves Christians that lie, deceive, or manipulate others?

Christians are most offended and hurt when the person doing the hurting are close, such as family and friends. Did they ask for forgiveness? Most don’t. Most won’t even admit that they did anything wrong.

However, let’s take our focus off those that offend and put our focus on what unforgiveness does to us when we hold it in our hearts. A person who is unwilling to forgive will grow bitter and that bitterness will turn into hatred. When we hold a grudge against another, it usually spews out of our mouths like venom. We tell anyone who will listen, what that person did to us. Before long people avoid the person that is always blaming others for what they go through. Everything bad that happens, that person blames the one that did them wrong, even if it was years ago.

So how do we get to a place where we forgive them when the other person doesn’t even care that they hurt you?

Forgiveness proceeds grace! Forgiveness is giving grace to the one who doesn’t deserve it. You have to receive grace in order to give it. If you have a problem with receiving forgiveness and grace from the Great Grace Giver, then you certainly will not be able to give forgiveness to others.

Matthew 10:8 – …”Freely you have received, freely you give.” Anyone who feels like they have to earn forgiveness from God, will make others “earn” forgiveness from them! But once a person realizes that they didn’t deserve to be forgiven by God, then it becomes easier to forgive others without them having to earn your forgiveness.

Forgive in the Greek  means “Release.” When God forgave us, He released us from the punishment of sin. When we truly forgive someone, we release them and don’t bring it up again to them. God doesn’t keep bringing up our old sins, so why should we to others?

This will be a battle in our minds, but here is the point, “You don’t forgive people who were right!” We forgive those who have done wrong! We don’t have to forgive those who are nice and kind to us, we forgive those who have been nasty and mean and who have hurt us.

Is this easy? No. Some will chose to close relationships because the offense was too great, but if you want peace, forgive and move on.

Revelation – Chapter 22

Verse 1 – And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.

God is using a physical substance (water) to help explain a spiritual truth. Living water flows pure, clear, and fresh. It is not murky, stagnant, or polluted. It possesses life-giving qualities that man cannot live without. This is water that restores and refreshes, flows in abundance, and satisfies our thirst. The source of this water is the throne of God and of the Lamb.

Verse 2 – In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the trees were for the healing of the nations.

John is still describing all that is in the Holy City, but what is outside the walls of the New Jerusalem?

The leaves of the trees for “healing of the nations” was always confusing until I thought long and hard about what John was saying.

Isaiah 66:22 says, “For as the new heavens and the new earth which I make shall remain before Me,” says the Lord, “So shall your descendants and your name remain.

We have to keep in mind, that after the 1,000 year reign has ended, there will be thousands alive that were born during this time, that did not follow Satan. These “nations” are populated with those people.

If God could save Noah and his family during the great flood and then repopulate the earth, God can certainly preserve those born in the Millennium to repopulate the “New Earth.” The Bible says, “Kings will come from every nation to the Holy City to bring honor and glory to the King of kings.” So if this is not true, then where do the people come from?

Verse 3 – And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him.

In the New Jerusalem there will be no more: death, mourning, crying or pain; no need for a temple; no sun nor moon; no night; impure, shameful, or deceit and no curse.

Verse 4 – They shall see His Face, and His name shall be on their foreheads.

Verse 5 – And there shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. and they shall reign forever and ever.

This is hard for us to even imagine. There will be no need for any physical or artificial light because God will be the source. and it won’t kill us to look on the face of God.

Verse 6 – Then he said to me, “These words are faithful and true.” And the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show His servants the things which must shortly take place.

No man is to trifle with these words that were written by John, by spiritualizing or reducing them to meaningless symbols.

Verse 7 – “Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.”

“Soon” or “shortly” means before long, but Jesus said He is coming “quickly,” meaning “suddenly,” very fast. This is significant, because unbelievers get the wrong impression when they hear Christians say that Jesus is coming soon. What we should say is, “When Jesus comes, it will happen very fast, in a blink of an eye.”

Prophecy is so important because it can change our lives and cause us to be more concerned for the lost, time is short.

Verse 8 – Now I, John, saw and heard these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel who showed me these things.

Verse 9 – Then he said to me, “See that you do not do that. For I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the words of this book. Worship God.”

This is the second time an angel told John not to worship him. We are not to worship or bow to anyone but the Lord Jesus, alone!

Verse 10 – And he said to me, “Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand.

When Daniel wrote his prophecy several hundred year before the birth of Christ, he didn’t understand some of the things God had showed him. He wanted an explanation, but the fulfillment of his prophecies were a long time off, so he was told to “Seal them up until the end time.” This Revelation is different with John. John’s prophecy was already unfolding, and the Church Age had begun. God wants His people to know these things now.

Verse 11 – “He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous still; he who is holy, let him be holy still.”

This is a warning regarding the separation of the lost and the saved. A great “chasm” will separate the Lake of Fire from the Holy City that no one can cross. The decisions people make while living will determine their destiny for eternity.

Verse 12 – “And behold, I am coming quickly and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work.

Not much is said in the church today about rewards. For the most part it is a neglected message. None of us deserves a reward for doing the will of the Father, but we know rewards will be given because  Jesus says so. If we would only let the goodness of God sink in, we would do more to honor Him. and we honor Him every time we help someone who can’t help themselves.

Verse 13 – “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning, and the End, the First and the Last.”

Verse 14 – Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.

Some versions of the Bible says, “Blessed are those who wash their robes,” but the King James version, I believe, is the closest interpretation – “Blessed are those who do His commandments.”

Those who do His commandments will be offered two rewards: access to the tree of life and be able to pass through the gates to get to the tree of life.

Verse 15 – But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie.

Dogs are sometimes referred to as those who practice the occult. John just made a list of those who will be in the eternal lake of fire.

So who are those who “practice or maketh a lie?” False doctrines can be one, but some that come to mind are those which have convinced themselves that they are the opposite sex of what they were born with – that’s practicing a lie. Sexual immorality covers a lot of things and this is only one that falls into this category. Rape, incest , fornication are a few more which will have their part in the Lake of Fire, outside and far away from the gates of the Holy City.

Verse 16 – “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.”

The Root and the Offspring of David comes from the Old Testament and is reference to the Messiah. The Bright and Morning Star comes from both the Old and New Testaments. Jesus refers to Himself as the One who will appear near the end of the earth’s darkest hour.

Verse 17 – And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. And whoever desires let him take the water of life freely.

This is God’s final call for all believers and for believers to tell unbelievers to “Come!” The Holy Spirit works in and through the “Bride of Christ,” the Church, using believers to invite the lost to come to Jesus and drink of His salvation, the water of life.

To those that are tired of living without Jesus, who thirst after righteousness, come and drink and be filled.

Verse 18 – For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book;

Verse 19 –  and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

Some denominations don’t include the entire book of Revelation. Some have changed such words as “Him,” “darkness,” and “blindness” because they do not want to offend anyone. Some have produced a “New Bible” that contain an approved “inclusive” language. Is this adding to or taking away? You bet it is.

Verse 20 – He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.” Amen. Even so, come Lord Jesus!

Verse 21 – The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

These last words of the Bible serve a s a reminder that “Grace” makes salvation possible. Grace will keep us out of the Lake of Fire , and let us pass through the gates of the Holy City.

Grace is God’s riches at Christ’s expense. Salvation: everyone needs it (Romans 3:23). Everyone can have  it (John 3:16). Only Jesus can give it (John 14:6). Only believers receive it (John 3:36).

 

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 20

Satan Is Bound 1,000 Years

Verse 1 – Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.

Verse 2 – He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years;

Verse 3 – and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while.

God could seize Satan at anytime He chooses, but the Bible says He waits until the end of the Tribulation Period. It’s not hard to imagine that God can make a key and chain that could hold Satan. After all, Satan really hasn’t been free to do as he chooses all this time because his influence has always been limited.

Bound and chained, Satan will be cast into the Abyss, not being able to deceive during the 1,000 year reign of Christ.

Those believers which survived the Tribulation Period, will repopulate the earth. Multitudes will be born during the Millennium. During that time, the offspring will not know what temptation is. There will be no real test of their faith. When Satan is released, unfortunately, many will fall.

Saints Reign 1,000 Years

Verse 4 – And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgments was committed to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

I may be wrong, but it sounds like the ones who were beheaded during the Tribulation Period, would be given thrones in which to rule in judgment from.

Verse 5 – But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.

The first resurrection is called the resurrection of life or the resurrection of believers. The second resurrection is called the resurrection of damnation or unbelievers.

By Scripture saying, “The first resurrection,” people think it means there is only “one” resurrection, but that is not the case.

There was the resurrection of Christ and some Old Testament Saints; the resurrection of the Church at the Rapture; the resurrection of the two witnesses; the resurrection of the Tribulation Saints and the remainder of the Old Testament Saints at the end of the Tribulation Period. Then the Second resurrection at the end of the 1,000 year reign, of the unbelievers. (The 144,000 will still be living because God said no harm came to them.)

So by the time the Tribulation Period ends, all believers in Christ are raised.

Verse 6 – Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.

My understanding is this: Those who are alive and breathing, that enter into the 1,000 year reign with Christ, will die at some point. However, death has no power to keep them in the grave! They are immediately resurrected to be priests of God and of Christ, never to face an eternity without Him.

Satan Is Released and Leads Rebellion

Verse 7 – Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison

Verse 8 – and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea.

With Satan bound during the Millennium, people will be shielded from temptations and sin. Sickness and disease will not exist and people will live to be hundreds of years old. However, those born during the Millennium will have to be tested just like everyone else. When the Millennium is over, the Abyss will be opened one more time, and Satan will be released to resume his old ways.

When Satan is released, he will pick up where he left off. Tempting those that were born during the Millennium will prove that eliminating sin is not as simple as changing our environment. There is something wrong with the very nature of man’s heart. Rebellion is our nature, unless we surrender to Christ and are born-again.

At the battle of Gog and Magog Satan will once again try to become greater than God by gathering hordes of people from all over the world.

As far as Gog and Magog, I think they are two people that are born during the Millennium and help Satan surround Jerusalem.

Verse 9 – They went up on the breath of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And a fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them.

Satan never learned, “Do not harm the things of God!” He tries once more to gather a rebellious army and surround God’s beloved city, but they are literally consumed by fire.

Verse 10 – And the devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

Some people like to think that Satan, the Antichrist, and the False Prophet are annihilated, but the Scripture doesn’t say that. It says “Where they are tormented day and night forever and ever!”

The Great White Throne Judgement

Verse 11 – Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them.

All judgment has been committed to Christ. The only ones who have to face “this judgement” are the lost.

Verse 12 – And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. and another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things written in the books.

This is what people seem to forget, “Your good works are not going to get you to heaven for all eternity. You must be born-again, and then the “good works” follow!

The Book of Life contains every person who ever lived, except those whose names have been blotted out for rejecting Christ. There is no mention of the “Lamb’s Book of Life” here, because, these that stand before this Great White Throne, were never born-again.

Verse 13 – The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them.and they were judged, each one according to his works.

Can you imagine the terror of the people standing there thinking, “I was warned about this!”

The Bible teaches that man is “destined to die once, and after this the judgment.” Believers will go before the “Judgment Seat of Christ where their works will be judged in order to receive rewards or not. The purpose of the “Great White Throne Judgment” for non-believers, is to set the degree of punishment.

The word “Hades” is used eleven times in the New Testament and is to be distinguished from the word Gehenna, which refers to the final hell, the Lake of Fire. Hades is the temporary abode of the wicked dead who await the Great White Throne of Judgment and their final sentencing.

Verse 14 – Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Verse 15 – And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

When God opens this book at the Great White Throne Judgment, the only names left in it will be the names of those who have believed in Christ as Savior and Lord over their lives.

Here’s the bottom line: Man does not set the laws nor standards of getting into heaven or even reaching God, God does. Too many people think because they are “good people,” that God accepts them. By whose standards do they consider themselves “good”?

Believers have one standard to go by and that is “You must be blood bought, born-again through faith in Jesus Christ” or a person will be doomed for all eternity, period! God makes no exceptions, because He is no respecter of persons.

 

 

 

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 6

In this chapter, the scene shifts from future events in heaven to future events on the earth.

Verse 1 – Now I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals; and I heard one of the four living creatures saying with a voice like thunder, “Come and see.”

Verse 2 – And I looked and behold a white horse. And he who sat on it had a bow, and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.

This rider is not Christ. Why? Because Christ is the One opening the seal. This rider comes on the scene with a bow, signifying military power. Notice, nothing is said about “arrows,” so this person will come forth as a man of peace at first – the Antichrist.

Crowns were worn by heads of state. Those who wore them usually earned or inherited them. But this man will receive his crown as a “gift,” meaning he will not earn it.

The Church has been raptured and the earth has been left in ciaos, no doubt. So, the world will be looking for a ruler who can put an end to nuclear weapons, wars, environmental and economic problems, poverty, etc.

But most of all, people will be looking for an explanation of what happened to millions of people who suddenly disappeared. This Antichrist will persecute and kill all those who oppose him. He will negotiate peace treaties that are fake.

Second Seal

Verse 3 – When He opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come and see.”

Verse 4 – And another horse, fiery red, went out. And it was granted to the one who sat on it to take peace from the earth, and that people should kill one another; and there was given to him a great sword.

This symbolism of the red horse is “blood” and the sword is “war.” This time was clearly prophesied by Christ in Matthew 24:6, 7. The outcome will probably be the “Ten Kingdoms Federation” over which the Antichrist will become head.

This rider has the authority to take peace from the earth. Not only will peace be taken from the nations, but from the individuals also. People will start fighting each other and killing each other for less reason than they do now.

Third Seal

Verse 5 – When He opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come and see.” And I looked, and behold, a black horse, and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand.

Verse 6 – And I heard a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not harm the oil and the wine.”

War will rule the hole world after the Rapture. War will cause the collapse of social, physical, and political structures. They will destroy, confiscate, and hoard food supplies, causing famine, poverty, and death.

The set of scales always represents economic disaster and famine. The amount of money that it will take to just by a days worth of food will be astronomical!

A danarius was a day’s wage. There will be plenty of oil and wine because they do not need to be cultivated, so their ruthless destruction is forbidden.

Fourth Seal

Verse 7 – When He opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come and see.”

Verse 8 – And I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was Death, and Hades followed with him. and power was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with a sword, with hunger, with death, and by the beasts of the earth.

Notice how things get progressively worse; the first horse was only partially armed – went out to conquer; the second horse carries a single large sword – taking peace and causing bloodshed through fighting. The third horse – economic collapse and famine; and the fourth – a quarter of all the earth, death and hell following.

The sword signifies continuing war and bloodshed; famine signifies starvation; plague signifies diseases; and the wild beast of the earth begin to devour and come against the people. (Remember, no peace, even among the animals.) God will show the world how wrong it was to worship “Mother Nature.” Hungry animals will turn on the unbelieving world and add to the death and eternal damnation of more than a billion people.

Fifth Seal

Verse 9 – When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held.

The Martyrs whose “souls” John saw are not the Martyrs of “past ages”; those were taken up to heaven with the Church. These souls are the Martyrs who will be killed during the Tribulation Period.

After the Church is caught up, the preaching of the “Gospel of the Kingdom” will resume (Matthew 24:14). It is the souls of the martyrs of those who will be persecuted during this time that John saw. They asked that their deaths be avenged, but are told to rest for a “little while” until they were joined by others.

Verse 10 – And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”

The souls of the Tribulation Saints are under the altar crying out instead of praising God around the throne with the rest of the Church. However, they are fully conscience and able to rationalize the torture, murder, and persecution they have endured. They have a sense of justice and want vindication, and they want their glorified bodies.

These martyrs will not be rebuked by Jesus for asking to be vindicated. Jesus just tells them to be patient a little longer.

Verse 11 – And a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed.

These saints do have a body though because they were given the white robes of righteousness representing Christ.

Verse 12 – I looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood.

This earthquake will be massive! The whole earth will go into convulsions. This very well could be caused by a nuclear explosion and when that happens, the sun is darkened and the moon turns blood red.

Verse 13 – And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind.

Remember when interpreting Scripture – When the plain sense of Scripture makes common sense, seek no other sense. In this case we are reminded that there are stars bigger than the earth.

Since the word “stars” in the Greek translation could also be translated “meteors,” this could indicate a meteor shower and could also mean a missile attack.

Verse 14 – Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place.

This does sound like a nuclear war. During a nuclear blast the wind is rapidly pushed out (displaced) for several miles, creating a vacuum at the center of the blast site. And then suddenly, this wind, like a giant tidal wave, rushes violently back into the vacuum. The sky actually rolls up on itself. This explosion will be so great that every mountain and island on the earth will move.

Verse 15 – And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hide themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains,

Verse 16 – and said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!

Verse 17 – “For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”

Regardless of one’s status, there will be worldwide panic. Millions will rush to find cover and survival will be their only concern.

Will they then call on the name of Jesus? The Bible says they will call on the mountains and rocks to hide them. And they know exactly whom is causing all this destruction – God. Isn’t that what people do when hiding from their sin – call on everything but God?

The Lord Jesus Christ will either be your Savior or your Judge. If people reject His mercy they will be judged in absolute justice and wrath.

The “great day of His wrath” is another way of saying the Tribulation Period” has come. The multitudes of people who have rejected Jesus will recognize that day has come when the first seal is broken.

So many Christians won’t even attempt to read this book, and that’s just sad. When we read any instruction manual, do we leave out the end? No one should want to live through any part of this book, but multitudes will, because they have rejected the only One that can offer them salvation and an eternity with Christ in heaven. The Bible states that “Hell has enlarged itself,” so don’t be part of that . Make your decision today where you are going to spend eternity becasue it only get worse after this chapter.