How we need to stay close to God and be on guard against all the wiles of the devil!

(Day of Atonement 2019)

Fred R. Coulter—October 9, 2019

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Greetings, brethren! Welcome to the Day of Atonement! This is one of the most important days that we keep. It is so important, because if we didn't keep it, we wouldn't know who the true God actually is!

Let's begin as we always do with Lev. 23 and notice the commands here, and how important it is that everything be done properly.

Leviticus 23:26: "And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 'Also, on the tenth day of this seventh month, is the Day of Atonement….'" (vs 26-27). That means:

  • at-one-ment with God
  • atonement for the whole nation
  • atonement for the whole Church as it applies to the Church

"…It shall be a Holy convocation to you. And you shall afflict your souls and offer an offering made by fire to the LORD" (v 27)—fast without food or water!

Now notice very carefully how important this is; v 28: "And you shall do no work in that same day, for it is the Day of Atonement, in order to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God… [so that you can constantly have contact with God] …for whoever is not afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people" (vs 28-29). That is not receive the blessings that generally go to the people!

Verse 30: "And whoever does any work in that same day, the same one will I destroy from among his people." There are many ways to do that!

We need to understand about God! God wants obedience in love, but IF there is rebellion and self-will THENHe's going to correct severely for it! That's how God works! All you need to do is look at what is happening in the world, in America today. All of the things that are coming upon us today are because we've turned our back on God, we have legitimized the killing of the unborn on a mammoth scale—66-million to date—and God is going to punish for it! That's how He does it.

Look at the mass shootings that we've had this summer, same exact way. 'If you want to kill the unborn, I [God] am going to send someone to stir you up! Hopefully you'll repent!' That happened in the days of Solomon. When he was sinning and going against God, God raised up Hadad as a terrorist against Israel. Not only did the king sin, but all the people!

Verse 31: "You shall do no manner of work. It shall be a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings."

Stop and think: Do the descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel exist to day? Yes!And the Day of Atonement should be kept in a way that God wants it kept!

Verse 32: "It shall be to you a Sabbath of rest, and you shall afflict yourselves. In the ninth day of the month at sunset, from sunset to sunset, you shall keep your Sabbath." That's how we keep every Sabbath!

But it's very important here that God specifically said here "…sunset to sunset…" because there are some people who will say, 'The evening begins a three in the afternoon.' And there are other who say, 'The Sabbath doesn't begin until you can see three stars at night when it's dark.'

That's a difference of five or more hours! So, God wanted everyone all on the same page, all at the same time keeping the Day of Atonement.

Let's see something important in Lev. 16[transcriber's correction]. What we're going to learn with the Day of Atonement is that human beings cutoff from God cannot distinguish the difference between the true God and Satan the devil, the false God of this world, and that Satan always comes bringing a benefit! That's why Adam and Eve fell! They listened to the serpent instead of God!

So, we have in Lev. 16 the whole ceremony that was to be done on the Day of Atonement.

Leviticus 16:1: "And the LORD spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they offered before the LORD and they died."

How important is it to do things correctly? Why did God kill the two sons of Aaron? Because God started the fire at the altar, and it was to be continually burning; it was never to go out! That was started by Holy fire and they let it go out, then they took fire from someplace else and rekindled the altar. God destroyed them!

So, how important is it to do what God says? It cost them their life!

Verse 2: "And the LORD said to Moses, 'Speak to Aaron your brother, that he does not come at all times into the sanctuary within the veil before the mercy seat, which is on the ark, so that he does not die, for I will appear in the cloud over the mercy seat. Aaron shall come into the sanctuary this way…'" (vs 2-3).

A specific way; for him and all Israel once a year on the Day of Atonement, that's what it says at the end of the chapter.

"…with a young bull, for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering. He shall put on the Holy linen coat, and he shall have the linen breeches on his flesh, and shall be girded with a linen girdle, and with the linen miter he shall be dressed. These are Holy garments. And he shall wash his flesh in water and put them on" (vs 3-4). Everything exactly as God says!

Verse 5: "And he shall take from the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering." These two goats become very vital; most important, indeed! They were to be identical.

After Aaron had the offering for the atonement for himself and so forth, v 7: "And he shall take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation." Right before God!

Since they were identical, God had to make the choice. So, Aaron had to cast lots; v 8: "And Aaron shall cast lots on the two goats; one lot for the LORD and the other lot for Azazel"—another name for Satan the devil, and also a place of wilderness and cutoffness!

Verse 9: "And Aaron shall bring the goat on which the LORD'S lot fell, and offer it for a sin offering. But the goat on which the lot fell for Azazel shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make an atonement upon it and sent away into the wilderness for Azazel" (vs 9-10).

That's quite an interesting thing to be done. In order for our sins to be forgiven, there must be shed blood! Why take the live goat and send it away? Well, some commentaries say that's Jesus carrying our sins off to heaven. Pray tell, when in the Bible is heaven ever been referred to as a wilderness? Why must our sins be taken up there. They're atoned for on the earth where the blood was shed. So, Azazel represents Satan! God has to reveal Who the true God is and who Satan is, because people don't know the difference!

After Aaron takes care of sprinkling the blood for the sin offering for himself and the priesthood, then v 15: "Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering that is for the people, and bring its blood inside the veil. And he shall do with that blood as he did with the blood of the young bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat. And he shall make an atonement for the sanctuary…" (vs 15-16).

This is a whole atonement for all the people, all the sanctuary as a group. That's important.

"…because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel and because of their transgressions in all their sins. And so he shall do for the tabernacle of the congregation, which remains with them in the midst of their uncleanness. And there shall be no man in the tabernacle of the congregation when he goes in to make an atonement in the sanctuary until he comes out and has made an atonement for himself, and for his household, and for all the congregation of Israel" (vs 6-17).

This is a blanket forgiveness, cleanliness for everyone!

Verse 18: "And he shall go out to the altar that is before the LORD and make an atonement for it. And he shall take of the blood of the young bull and of the blood of the goat, and put it on the horns of the altar all around. And he shall sprinkle of the blood on it with his finger seven times and cleanse it, and hallow it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel. And when he has made an end of reconciling the sanctuary and the tabernacle of the congregation and the altar, he shall bring the live goat" (vs 18-20).

Notice what he does; this is quite a thing! Let's understand something, and we will see this as a principle as we go along. Only God can reveal to us Who He is and who Satan is! And as long as Satan is around there will always be sin!

That's why this ritual here descended off into the wilderness to get rid of Satan. This is also a prophecy that will ultimately be fulfilled in the book of Revelation.

Verse 21: "And Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the sins of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and shall send it away by the hand of a chosen man into the wilderness."

That chosen man, as we will see later, was a type of an angel (Rev. 20). But:

  • Who is the author of sin? Satan the devil!
  • What did God give into all human beings because of the sin of Adam and Eve? Human nature, called the law of sin and death by the Apostle Paul!

Therefore, God is showing that He's going to remove sin once and for all, forever! That's quite a thing for us to understand, because in this world today, we who are the firstfruits are those who have to fight off Satan the devil all the time.

  • Satan wants to concentrate on the Church
  • Satan wants to get people to fall

The whole world is under the power of 'the wicked one'! That's why it's very important that we keep this day!

Before Jesus could begin His ministry, he had to confront Satan the devil. Satan came with the greatest temptation possible! Jesus fasted 40 days and 40 nights and was extremely weak! When do people sin the most? When they're weak! When they don't have any strength! That's how Satan preys on those in the Church.

Also, it's important to understand that when this temptation began—this 40-day temptation by Satan against Jesus—this was on the Day of Atonement in 26A.D., which was a Jubilee Year! Jesus came as the Savior of the world to bring forgiveness of sin that would eventually be through His sacrifice as a sin offering for God.

Jesus had to come and confront Satan the devil. And beginning on this Day of Atonement. That's how important that this Day of Atonement is. Let's notice, when we read this account in Matt. 4:

  • Where did Jesus meet Satan"
  • In heaven? No! On the earth!
  • Where? In the wilderness!

After He was baptized and received the Holy Spirit for His ministry:

Matthew 4:1: "Then Jesus was led up into the wilderness by the Spirit in order to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted for forty days and forty nights, afterwards He was famished. And when the tempter came to Him, he said, 'If You are the Son of God…'" (vs 1-3).

Always giving a challenge that you must answer back. That's what happened with Adam and Eve. That's what Satan always does!

"…'If You are the Son of God command that these stones become bread'" (v 3). He could say all kinds of things. Just think how wonderful that would smell while the stones are turning to bread.

Verse 4: "But He answered and said, 'It is written…'" That's why we have the Word of God; that's why we need the Word of God, because God has spoken everything that He needs to speak and has it written down for us so we can know what we need to do.

Jesus didn't come back with a smart aleck answer and say, 'Of course, I'm the Son of God, what's the matter with you. Watch this…' He relied on the Word of God, because:

  • the Word of God is Truth
  • the Word of God is Spirit
  • the Word of God is Life

"…'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God'" (v 4).

That's the first place that all of us need to begin. Every word of God that He has spoken and has it written down.

"…'It is written, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God."'"

There you have it right there what God wants us to do has been written down!

Verse 5: "Then the devil took Him to the Holy city and set Him upon the edge of the temple, and said to Him, 'If You are the Son of God, cast Yourself down; for it is written…'" (vs 5-6).

Notice that Satan quotes Scripture! Oh yes, Satan loves to quote Scripture and twist it and turn it and make it into a lie for those who do not really believe God. That's why fake Christianity is so far off the beam. They've got it all wrong!

 "'…"He shall give His angels charge concerning You, and they shall bear You up in their hands, lest You strike Your foot against a stone"'" (v 6). That's tempting God!

Verse 7: "Jesus said to him, 'Again, it is written, "You shall not tempt the Lord your God."'…. [How about that!] …After that, the devil took Him to an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory" (vs 7-8)—all in a moment of time! This was very tempting!

  • Wasn't that the whole promise and purpose of Jesus' coming?
  • To set up His Church?
  • To preach the Gospel?

then His second coming to:

  • To bring the Kingdom of God on earth?
  • To rule the whole world from Jerusalem?
  • Yes!

So, Satan comes along and says, 'I'll give you a shortcut! You can have it now! There's just one little catch':

Verse 9: "And said to Him, 'All these things will I give You, if You will fall down and worship me.'"

Think about that for a minute. If Jesus did that, what a terrible situation that would have been. But in all of these cases, these are temptations by Satan. We have to choose the Word of God as Jesus did, and overcome as Jesus did.

Verse 10: "Then Jesus said to him, 'Be gone, Satan! For it is written… [Jesus is speaking to Himself and what all human beings need to have spoke to them]: …"You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him alone shall you serve."'"

That gets right back to the first commandment: You shall have no other gods before Me! If Jesus would have bowed down and worshipped Satan the devil He would have proclaimed Satan as God!

Think on that! It's quite amazing how things get so twisted and turned and upside down and backward with Satan the devil!

Let's see how Satan works. Just like Satan came after Jesus Christ, and notice what Jesus said:

Matthew 13:18[transcriber's correction]: "Therefore, hear the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the Word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the wicked one comes… [Satan the devil] …and snatches away that which was sown in his heart. This is the one who was sown by the way" (vs 18-19).

That's something, isn't it? Satan is right there! He doesn't want anyone in the Kingdom of God.

There are quite a few lessons that we're going to learn in the book of Matthew today.

The goat whose blood was shed, represents Christ. Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sin!

Matthew 6:12: "And forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but rescue us from the evil one…." (vs 12-13).

Who leads us into temptation? Satan! Not God! We have to be rescued from the evil one! That's quite a thing to understand! We of ourselves do not have any power to overcome Satan. God has to be the One to intervene to do that, and to accomplish it.  But therefore, we better not dabble in the things of the world and Satan, and the ways that are going to take us away from God! Satan is the one who brings the temptation!

Now let's see something concerning Peter. This is quite interesting how you look at it, because Peter was one of the leading apostles: Peter, James and John.

Let's see how quickly after Peter did something inspired of God that Satan came right around to try and snatch him! Maybe you never through of it that way, but that's true! This is quite a revelation when you understand it. Just like the one who heard the Word and was happy. Satan came along and took it away. This is a similar, kind of a parallel thing with Peter.

Matthew 16:15: "He said to them, 'But you, whom do you declare Me to be?'" Then Simon Peter answered and said, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.'…. [true, but he didn't do that on his own] …And Jesus answered and said to him, 'Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona, for flesh and blood did not reveal it to you, but My Father, Who is in heaven'" (vs 15-17). God the Father revealed it to him!

Verse 18: "And I say also to you that you are Peter… [which means a small stone] …but upon this Rock… [on Jesus Himself] …I will build My Church, and the gates of the grave shall not prevail against it."

Now come to where Jesus was explaining to the apostles, the disciples at that time:

Verse 21: "From that time Jesus began to explain to His disciples that it was necessary for Him to go to Jerusalem, and to suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and to be killed, and to be raised the third day."

Notice what Peter said after having it revealed to him that Jesus was the Christ by God the Father, and notice what Peter did and who was behind it:

Verse 22: "But after taking Him aside, Peter personally began to rebuke Him, saying, 'God will be favorable to you, Lord. In no way shall this happen to You.' Then He turned and said to Peter, 'Get behind Me, Satan!…. [because Satan was putting that thought into Peter] …You are an offense to Me, because your thoughts are not in accord with the things of God, but the things of men.'" (vs 22-23).

Then He said very clearly and why He gave this instruction afterwards; v 24: "And Jesus said to His disciples, 'If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself… [your own way, the way of the world] …and let him take up his cross and follow Me.'"

Whatever the difficult may be, if we are going to follow Christ, we follow Him through everything! That's what Jesus is telling the disciples.

Verse 25: "For whoever desires to save his life shall lose it; but whoever will lose his life for My sake shall find it."

The whole goal for all of us is eternal life! Not comfort in a physical life. Not being saved from difficulties. Difficulties are going to come, and they're going to:

  • come from the world
  • come from our own mistakes
  • come from Satan the devil

This is quite an instruction that Jesus gave after Satan put that thought in Peter's mind.

Verse 26: "For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world, but loses his life?…."

Isn't that what Satan offered Jesus? Yes, I'll give You the whole world! But Jesus would have lost His life!

"…Or what shall a man give in exchange for his life? For the Son of man shall come in the glory of His Father with His angels; and then He shall render to everyone according to his doings. Truly I say to you, there are some of those standing here who shall not taste of death…" (vs 26-28). That is they would see the vision of Christ!

That's quite a warning for us, for Christ to do that. What we're going to focus on this Day of Atonement is the things that Satan will try and get us to do. We will see that Satan is very active in the world, but the ones he really wants to get in the long run are every one of those who are in the Church.

Look at what has happened to the Church. Brethren, that came:

  • because of sin
  • because of people wanting different doctrines
  • because of preachers teaching different things
    • Where did those thoughts come from?
    • How were they seduced?

We need to be praying for all the brethren in the Church everywhere every day, because Satan is there!

Let's look at something interesting concerning Peter a little later. This was on the Passover night. This is a very interesting section of Bible to understand. He just gave them everything they needed to know:

  • foot-washing
  • breaking the unleavened bread
  • drinking of the wine

That was establishing the New Covenant, the covenant for eternal life, and also the covenant with the apostles for the preaching of the Gospel and to raise up the Church through them!

Luke 22:31: "Then the Lord said, 'Simon, Simon, listen well. Satan has demanded to have all of you, to sift as wheat.'" That's quite a statement. This was Satan coming to God asking to have Peter.

  • Why would he want Peter?
  • Where is Satan's church today? In Rome!
  • What is the Basilica called? St. Peter's Basilica!
  • Who do they say was the founder of the Catholic Church? Peter the apostle!

But all of that is a lie! That's why Satan wanted Peter!

Since he couldn't have Peter, we know from events in the Bible and history, that Satan selected Simon Magus, and he went to Rome in 42A.D. and was called 'theo Simon', the 'god' Simon. What was he? A sorcerer! He dealt with 'familiar spirits.' He was a satanist! So, Satan chose him.The big lie that the Apostle Peter went to Rome and founded the Roman Catholic Church has been alive through all the centuries to this day!

Verse 32—Jesus continues: "But I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; and when you are converted, strengthen your brethren."

Notice that Peter didn't quite let that really sink in. Peter said, v 33: "And he [Peter] said to Him, 'Lord, I am ready to go with You both to prison and to death.' But He [Jesus] said, 'I tell you, Peter, the cock shall in no wise crow today before you have denied knowing Me three times'" (vs 33-34).

Since they were done about 11 at night, that's only about six hours and that was fulfilled. What happened when Peter came to the realization of what he did, after the third time here's what Peter said emphatically:

Verse 60: "And Peter said, 'Man, I do not know what you are talking about.' And immediately, while he was yet speaking, the cock crowed. Then the Lord turned and looked at Peter… [and Peter looked Him right back in the eye] …and Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had said to him, 'Before the cock crows, you shall deny Me three times.' And Peter went outside and wept bitterly" (vs 60-62).

Great repentance! But Peter had to understand that he had the weakness, that he wanted to do things his way, and that was not serving Christ. Christ did not want Peter to serve Satan the devil.

That's quite a lesson for us to learn today. Look at what has happened to the Church wherever you go! That's why, brethren, with the Christian Biblical Church of God, "Your Word is the Truth!"
We want the Truth of God, the Truth of God, and only the Truth of God!

Whenever we start yielding to our own selves and come to our own devices, then Satan is going to be right there to take advantage of it and cause terrible things to happen! We need to understand that!

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The theme of this day is how we need to stay close to God and be on guard against all the wiles of the devil!

  • he is there working
  • he is the god of this world
  • he is deceiving the whole world

Let's see how Satan works during the days of Jesus. What happened? It had to take place over a period of time. What God had given to the Jews became Judaism, a false religion, yet, thinking it was true because of what they did.

John 8:20: "Jesus spoke these words in the treasury while teaching in the temple; but no one arrested Him because His time had not yet come. Then Jesus said to them again, 'I am going away; and you shall seek Me, but you shall die in your sin….'" (vs 20-21). The wages of sin is death! Who is the author of death? Satan the devil!

"…Where I am going, you are not able to come" (v 21). You don't have any power to go where I'm going! Where was He going? To heaven to be with the Father! How about that! The Bible says that no one has any power to go to heaven! What do you know about that!

Verse 22: "Therefore, the Jews said, 'Will He kill Himself? Is that why He says, "Where I am going, you are not able to come"?' And He said to them, 'You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world'" (vs 22-23).

That's why in His final prayer, Jesus said, 'Don't take them out of the world, but keep them from the wicked one, or the evil one. 'They are not of the world, exactly as I am not of this world.' What one of the first steps that people take when they go out of the Church? That is go back to the world a little bit, and then a little bit more! Lo and behold, you come up with one man who used to be a minister in WCG who is now a Lutheran minister! Is Satan at work? Yes, indeed!

Verse 24: "That is why I said to you that you shall die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I AM… ['ego emi' that's a name of God (book of Exodus), So, when He said]: …if you do not believe that I AM you shall die in your sins.' Then they said to Him, 'Who are You?' And Jesus said to them, 'The One that I said to you from the beginning. I have many things to say and to judge concerning you; but He Who sent Me is true, and what I have heard from Him, these things I speak to the world.' But they did not know that He was speaking to them of the Father" (vs 24-27).

No one knows the Father except the Son, except the one whom He reveals Him to!

Verse 28: "Then Jesus said to them, 'When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you yourselves shall know that I AM, and that I do nothing of Myself. But as the Father taught Me, these things I speak. And He Who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone because I always do the things that please Him'" (vs 28-29).

Key thing right here: the things that we do in our lives motivated from the Spirit of God is going to lead us to do the things that please God!

  • not please the world
  • not please the self

That's the whole purpose of Atonement and fasting and praying, that we realize in God we 'live and move and have our being,' and that there's nothing that we have on our own!

That's an important thing to really keep in mind all the time, lest we get lifted up! What is one of the first things that people start doing to lay themselves open to become victimized by Satan the devil? They start leaning to their own understanding! They start doing the things that are not right, but justify it. That is the first step and Satan is there to say, 'I'm here to help you!'

"…I do nothing of Myself. But as the Father taught Me, these things I speak." This is true for every minister! You speak what the Bible says! You speak it by the correct Biblical interpretation and not by:

  • your own thoughts
  • your own understanding
  • anything that comes from you

It must come from God and His Spirit!

This is so instructive for the Day of Atonement, v 30: "As He spoke these things, many believed in Him."

  • How did they believe?
  • With all their heart, mind, soul and being? NO!

They believe in Him with what He said. Now He's going to give them more instruction and see if they really believed, because He is from above and they are from beneath. That is with Satan the devil, as we will see.

Verse 31: "Therefore, Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in Him, 'If… [conditional] …you continue in My Word, you are truly My disciples.'"

  • it's not enough to believe that Jesus is the Christ
  • it's not enough to understand that He's the Son of God

You must continue in His Word! That's His whole message. Then you :…are truly My disciples."

Verse 32: "And you shall know the Truth, and the Truth shall set you free." That's how we stay free from Satan the devil! Staying with the Word of God! With His Spirit, God is writing it in our heart and mind.

  • that's how we think
  • that's how we live
  • that's how we act

Because we are the disciples and believers and the future sons and daughters of God! 'Now we are the children of God,' as John wrote.

Verse 33: "They answered Him, 'We are Abraham's seed…'" Oh yes, if you've got the right blood and the right genes you've got it made!

"'…and have never been in bondage to anyone…. [yet, Rome was ruling Judea] …What do You mean by saying, "You shall become free"?' Jesus answered them, 'Truly, truly I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a servant of sin'" (vs 33-34)—a slave of Satan the devil!

How is that for a lesson on the Day of Atonement? Absolutely true!

Verse 35: "And the servant does not live in the house forever; but the Son lives forever. Therefore, if the Son shall set you free, you shall truly be free" (vs 35-36). How are you set free from sin and Satan the devil?

  • repentance
  • baptism
  • receiving of the Holy Spirit
  • continuing in the Word of God
  • daily prayer
  • daily forgiveness
  • daily overcoming

That's how it is, because God wants us to be at-one with Him!

Verse 37: "I know that you are Abraham's seed; but you are seeking to kill Me, because My words do not enter into your minds. I speak the things that I have seen from My Father, and you do the things that you have seen from your father" (vs 37-38).

Whose father was their father? Not Abraham! But we will see in a minute, Satan the devil! That's what this Day of Atonement is all about! To know from the Word of God the difference between the Truth of God and the right teachings of God and the right days to keep from God vs what the world does and Satan teaches, and what they do they all think is great and glorious!

Just like the Jews here, they thought because they were Abraham's seed, 'we've got it made.'

Verse 39: "They answered and said to Him, 'Our father is Abraham.' Jesus said to them, 'If you were Abraham's children…'"

Notice the difference: Jesus said, 'I know you are of the seed of Abraham, but you're not the children of Abraham. What is He referring to? Remember Ishmael? Yes, indeed! Jesus is saying, 'You're no better than Ishmael.'

"…Jesus said to them, 'If you were Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham.'"

What did Abraham do? Kept the commandments, the statutes, the judgments and obeyed God's charge and obeyed His voice! That's what Abraham did.

Verse 40: "But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has spoken the Truth to you, which I have heard from God; Abraham did not do this."

Here they were at the temple and having the bloodline of Abraham within them, true, true, true! Christ was the Savior Who came, but He's not going to come and amalgamate the world to Himself. There must be repentance and conversion and change!

Notice what Jesus says, because they were of this world; v 41: "You are doing the works of your father.' Then they said to Him, 'We have not been born of fornication. We have one Father, and that is God.' Therefore, Jesus said to them, 'If God were your Father, you would love Me, because I proceeded forth and came from God. For I have not come of Myself, but He sent Me. Why don't you understand My speech? Because you cannot bear to hear My words" (vs 41-43)—They can't stand it!

Verse 44: "You are of your father the devil…"

Think about what we teach and preach and work up a real strong sermon and go to a Sunday-keeping church or a Catholic cathedral and preach it loud and clear! They will react exactly the same as these Jews did, because they are of their father, the devil! Not of God!

How did the world become so twisted and perverted that that is so? Because they refuse the Word of God and God could not call them!

Verse 44: "You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you desire to practice. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has not stood in the Truth because there is no Truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he is speaking from his own self; for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I speak the Truth, you do not believe Me" (vs 44-45). That's why it's always important:

  • the Truth of God
  • the Truth of the Sabbath and Holy Days
  • everything that God stands for

Verse 46: "Which one of you can convict Me of sin? But if I speak the Truth, why don't you believe Me? The one who is of God hears the words of God…." (vs 46-47). Do you understand that? That's what we have to do, and always take that in!

"…For this reason you do not hear, because you are not of God" (v 47). Right at the Temple of God, right in Jerusalem, the people who were to receive the promise were rejecting it, and they chose Satan the devil instead of God!

That's what the world has done! That's why the proper understanding of the sacrifice on Atonement and why the sins were confessed over the live goat. The reason is because whenever Satan is around there will always be lies and sin. Not just the sin from 'the law of sin and death' because of human nature, but from Satan the devil!

Verse 48: "Then the Jews answered and said to Him, 'Are we not right in saying that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?'" The lowest thing you could be called by a Jew!

Verse 49: "Jesus answered, 'I do not have a demon. But I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me. Yet, I do not seek My own glory; there is One Who seeks and judges. Truly, truly I say to you, if anyone keeps My words, he shall not see death forever'" (vs 49-51).

And they said, 'Who do You think You are?' That's the same reaction that you get in the world!

Let's see how these things develop, even back then! 2-Cor. 4, is what every minister and elder needs to always keep in mind. This is absolutely important. How does a minister start going astray?

  • by leaning to his own judgment
  • by leaning to his own understanding
  • by justifying in his mind that he could do better if he would only kind of modify something here and there

Look what happened to the Church in our day, absolutely incredible! Beginning early in the 1970s, it took time to do, because it doesn't happen all at once. Remember, Satan works incrementally. A little and a little and BAM! Then a little and a little and BAM! That's how Satan works!

2-Corinthians 4:1: "Therefore, having this ministry, according as we have received mercy, we are not fainthearted. For we have personally renounced the hidden things… [all hidden things] …of dishonest gain… [of lies, twisting truth, everything like that] …not walking in cunning craftiness…" (vs 1-2). We will see later that's how Satan operates,

"…nor handling the Word of God deceitfully…" (v 2). The only way you overcome Satan is with the Truth, the Truth, the Truth and nothing but the Truth!

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

Notice that the blinding comes when you reach a certain point in this world, which is Satan's world:

Verse 4: "In whom the god of this age has blinded the minds of those who do not believe… [that's exactly what Jesus said (John 4)] …lest the Light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we do not preach our own selves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake, because it is God Who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, Who shined into our hearts…" (vs 4-6).

  • Who called us
  • Who bought us
  • the Father draws us
  • Christ leads us

That's how we live as Christians!

the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" (v 6). That's quite a thing!

How do they do it, even using the Bible? Remember what we read in Matt. 4:4: man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God shall man live! They drop off a little here, a little there; they skim over a little here. They emphasize this and that, and they de-emphasize something else. What is that called?

2-Corinthians 2:17: "For we are not like the many, who for their own profit are corrupting the Word of God; but we speak with sincerity, as from God, and before God, and in Christ."

What did Jesus say of Himself? I of Myself do nothing! That's saying the same thing here when you preach.

This comes about when people start listening to the subtle arguments of Sunday-keepers. They haven't been studying themselves and when the Sunday-keeper comes along emphasizing certain things—with twisting and distorting that sound blessedly true—BANG! It happens!

2-Corinthians 11:1: "I would that you might bear with me in a little nonsense; but indeed, do bear with me. For I am jealous over you with the jealousy of God because I have espoused you to one husband… [Christ] …so that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent deceived Eve by his… [cunning] …craftiness, so your minds might be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ" (vs 1-3). What is the 'simplicity of Christ'?

  • Obey My voice!
  • Believe in Me!
  • Live by every Word of God!

It can't get any simpler than that!

Verse 4: "For indeed, if someone comes preaching another Jesus… [that's what it is in the world, it's not the true Jesus] …whom we did not preach, or you receive a different spirit…"—because a different spirit comes with it; a self-righteous, do-goody spirit. 'We're do-gooders; we bring benefits!'

Look at what has happened, they're all going into satanism! An amazing thing!

"…which you did not receive, or a different gospel…" (v 4):

  • the Old Testament has been done away
  • that's the old Law
  • you don't have to have works
  • you don't have to keep the commandments
  • you can come to church on Sunday

A different gospel!

"…which you did not accept, you put up with it as something good" (v 4). I remember a man told me one time:

They have some good points here. I go to this Southern Baptist Church here…
used to be in the Church of God

…and they have a lot of good things.


Verse 5: "But I consider myself in no way inferior to those highly exalted so-called apostles." These were not the apostles of God; these were the apostles of Satan the devil!

Verse 13: "For such are false apostles—deceitful workers who are transforming themselves into apostles of Christ."

  • their own works
  • their own ministries
  • their own ideas

Apart from God!

Verse 14: "And it is no marvel, for Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light."

I've come to bring you a benefit. I want you to know more that God hasn't told you! These things were known a long time ago. Guess what? I will be able to tell you about them.

Verse 15: "Therefore, it is no great thing if his servants also transform themselves as ministers of righteousness—whose end shall be according to their works."

  • Isn't that amazing?
  • How has that come about?

Let's see something important in Rev. 2 & 3. Satan is mentioned as interfering in the Churches of God through the prophecies of the seven churches of Rev. 2 & 3. How does it all start?

  • Church #1losing your first love, Ephesus
  • Church #2persecution takes place, Smyrna

Then Satan comes along! (Rev. 2:9). Satan is after the Church always!

Revelation 2:10: "Do not fear any of the things that you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, that you may be tried; and you shall have tribulation ten days. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you a crown of life."

  • Church #3they were right where Satan's throne is, Pergamos

Pergamos had the throne of Zeus and they had wonderful things that they did. They had a beautiful Sacrifice of the Mass, called eating things sacrificed to idols! They had the Church organized in a hierarchy! All because they were right there where Satan's capital was.

Then they did the things of Baalim and the Nicolaitans. Quite a thing!

  • Church #4Jezebel! The full-fledged work of Satan the devil, Thyatira

What happened to them? They really got in trouble. They followed all kinds of false things.

Verse 20: "But I have a few things against you, because you allow the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce My servants into committing fornication and eating things sacrificed to idols. And I gave her time to repent of her fornication, but she did not repent" (vs 20-21).

Notice what happened; notice how this becomes so terrible here:

Verse 22: "Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their works. And I will kill her children with death…" (vs 22-23)—second death; all because of Satan the devil! This is talking about a Church of God!

"…and all the churches shall know that I am He Who searches the reins and hearts; and I will give to each of you according to your works. But to you I say, and to the rest who are in Thyatira, as many as do not have this doctrine, and who have not known the depths of Satan… [How bad did it get?] …as they speak; I will not cast upon you any other burden" (vs 23-24).

  • Church #5—after Thyatira, you run and hide and there's not too much there, Sardis

They just kept the bare minimum! But even there, Christ says:

Revelation 3:2: "Be watchful, and strengthen the things that remain… [v 5]: …and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life…"

It doesn't mention Satan in account of Sardis, but they were so low-level that they didn't accomplish very much.

  • Church #6they are the ones confronted by the synagogue of Satan, Philadelphia

They remain faithful because they keep the Word of God; keep the Truth of God. They are not interested in riches and numbers, but in Truth and in righteousness. And the synagogue of Satan is not going to overcome them.

  • Church #7they give in, Laodicea

Revelation 12:9: "And the great dragon was cast out, the ancient serpent who is called the Devil and Satan, who is deceiving the whole world…"

Listen it's around us everywhere! We've got to be on guard! Peter says, 'Resist the devil, who comes like a roaring lion! Resist him steadfast in the faith!'

That statement means not only belief in God and in the power of God, the Spirit of God, but in the teachings of God, as well. Peter ought to know!

"…he [Satan] was cast down to the earth, and his angels were cast down with him" (v 9).

Then Satan is angry and goes to make war against those who are keeping the commandments of God. So, the times and days ahead are going to be very difficult, indeed!

  • we have to be strong
  • we have to stay strong
  • we have to resist the devil
  • we have resist the world
  • we have to resist everything that this world stands for

Why? Because there re going to be great miracles to come!

Revelation 13:3: "…but his… [the beast's] …deadly wound was healed; and the whole earth was amazed and followed the beast"—and it was Satan the devil, the dragon who gave him his power, throne and great authority!

There are going to be great and fantastic things happen! It's going to make the world believe that mankind has finally solved all of its problems. But it's not!

Verse 4: "And they worshiped the dragon, who gave his authority to the beast. And they worshiped the beast, saying, 'Who is like the beast? Who has the power to make war against him?'"

Then comes the final 'coup de gras' on all mankind! The mark of the beast!

Let's see what's going to happen to Satan the devil! When we all come back from the Sea of Glass with Christ on that Day of Trumpets to takeover the whole world, then Satan has to be removed, because you will never put away sin forever as long as Satan is around! After the beast and the false prophet were cast into the Lake of Fire, then:

Revelation 20:1: "Then I saw an angel descending from heaven, having the key of the abyss… [the bottomless pit] …and a great chain in his hand. And he took hold of the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years" (vs 1-2).

The Millennium cannot begin and succeed if Satan is around!

Verse 3: "Then he cast him into the abyss, and locked him up, and sealed the abyss over him, so that he would not deceive the nations any longer until the thousand years were fulfilled; and after that it is ordained that he be loosed for a short time."

That's part of the lesson of the coming Last Great Day. The truth of the matter is that human beings cannot tell the difference between the truth God and the false god by their own devices.

  • The only way they understand is by the Word of God!
  • The only way we understand is:
  • with the Spirit of God
  • with the Word of God
  • by living it
  • by changing
  • by growing
  • by overcoming
  • Satan will be defeated!
  • The Kingdom will come!
  • The Kingdom will succeed!

Then will come the new heavens and the new earth!

Scriptural References:

  • Leviticus 23:26-32
  • Leviticus 16:1-5, 7-10, 15-21
  • Matthew 4:1-10
  • Matthew 13:18-19
  • Matthew 6:12-13
  • Matthew 16:15-18, 21-28
  • Luke 22:31-34, 60-62
  • John 8:20-51
  • 2 Corinthians 4:1-6
  • 2 Corinthians 2:17
  • 2 Corinthians 11:1-5, 13-15
  • Revelation 2:10, 20-24
  • Revelation 3:2, 5
  • Revelation 12:9
  • Revelation 13:3-4
  • Revelation 20:1-3

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • John 4
  • Revelation 2:9

Transcribed: 9-18-19

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