The Seven Week Harvest

Fred R. Coulter – May 26, 2007

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And greetings, brethren, this is day 49, the Sabbath before Pentecost. And you know we are to count seven weeks then plus one day. And I think it’s very interesting, as we have it here in Deuteronomy 16, that it’s listed a little differently than Leviticus 23. Now, we sent you also the video on How to Count Pentecost; how to count 50.

Now, in Deuteronomy 16, it expresses it just a little bit differently—seven weeks. Now, as we saw on the video, Counting to Pentecost, these are complete weeks, each one ending in a Sabbath. “Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn” (Deut. 16:9, KJV). And that was the first premier sheaf that was harvest. And that first premier sheaf of the harvest represented Jesus Christ and His resurrection.

So he says: “And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks” (v 10). Now, that’s seven weeks plus one day—then it says you shall bring and offering and so forth.

  • Now let’s see the parallel of this.
  • Let’s see the harvest of this.
  • Let’s see how Jesus likens everything to do with the, with the events leading up to the resurrection as a harvest.

So, let’s come to John, the fourth chapter. Let’s go to John, the fourth chapter, and let’s see what Jesus said about the harvest—and we’re going to see that those in the first resurrection are likened unto a harvest. Now let’s pick it up here in John, the fourth chapter, John 4:32, FV: After His disciples came and offered Him something to eat: “And He said to them, ‘I have meat to eat that you are not aware of.’ Then the disciples said to one another, ‘Did anyone bring Him something to eat?’ Jesus said to them, ‘My meat is to do the will of him Who sent Me, and to finish His work” (vs 32-34).

So we need to understand this, brethren, and it is very, very important: God the Father is the One Who is going finish the Work. We are His workmanship, as we saw during the days of Unleavened Bread. Now as we are going through these things, I want to ask you a question: Are you going to let God finish the Work in you, or not? Because there are many forces; there are many people; there are many schemes; there are many false doctrines out there; false teachers, as we will see a little later, who are trying to get people to follow them with their false doctrines.

So, let’s ask the question: Are you going to let God finish the work in you? Put it in a personal way: Am I going to let God finish the work in me? Or do I still have in mind the kind of religiosity that’s in Protestantism or Catholicism and religion is just to make us better people. No! We have the greatest calling to the greatest thing that is going to be in the history of the world. So, we need to get our eyes up. We need to get our sights on God the Father, Jesus Christ and the whole plan of God. That’s why we have the new book out: God’s Plan for Mankind Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days.

Now, let’s continue: “Do not say that there are yet four months, and then the harvest comes…. [In other words, don’t look to the fall harvest—look to the spring harvest.] …I say to you, look around. Lift up your eyes and see the fields, for they are already white to harvest. And the one who reaps receives a reward, and gathers fruit unto eternal life; so that the one who is sowing and the one who is reaping may both rejoice together. For in this the saying is true, that one sows and another reaps. I sent you to reap that in which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labor” (vs 35-38).

And that’s so true.

  • We have the Word of God.
  • We have the things that we have now: the understanding of truth.
  • The understanding of doctrine.
  • The understanding of things that Christ promised would be revealed in the end-time. Not revealed to other people before the end-time.

And let’s see how we react to these things. Now, let’s also understand—let’s come back here to Matthew 9—and we will see that, that the New Testament talks about those who are going to be in the first resurrection—and as those who are of a harvest.

Now, let’s ask the question: If Jesus was the “premiere sheaf” and He was the firstborn to be resurrected—which He was—and He is represented by that premiere sheaf, do you not think that those who are in the first resurrection are also going to be represented by a harvest? Of course! And the reason that we have counting to Pentecost is because there is a, a connection between the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the first resurrection at His return. So, it’s a continuous process that takes place.

Now let’s come to Matthew 9, and let’s pick it up here in verse 35—Matthew 9:35, FV: “Then Jesus went around to all the cities and the villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every bodily weakness among the people. And seeing the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were wearied and scattered abroad, as sheep who did not have a shepherd” (vs 35-36).

Now, we need to be shepherded and Jesus is the Chief Shepherd. Now, for those who are elders and ministers we are to assist in that shepherding—as Peter admonished the elders in 1 Peter, the fifth chapter. That we are to shepherd the sheep, as Peter was told by Jesus when Jesus said, “Do you love Me?” He said, “Feed My sheep.” He asked a second time, “Peter, do you love me?” And he said, “Yes, Lord.” And He said, “Shepherd My lambs.” Then He asked him the third time, “Peter, do you love Me?” He said, “Lord, you know that I love You”—and he was a little bit exasperated. And Jesus said, “Feed My sheep.”

So, all the elders and teachers in the Church—and we’re going to see that there are even “wanna-be’s” that lead people astray—you better feed the flock of God; you better teach the Word of God because that’s the way that Jesus has chosen to do it. That’s why we have a greater responsibility upon us.

Now, let’s continue here: “Then He said to his disciples… [who were then to be what? The 12 apostles, correct? Yes. He said:] …’The harvest is truly great, but the workmen are few; Therefore, beseech the Lord of the harvest, that He may send out workmen into His harvest” (vs 37-38). And what are they to do? They are to perfect the saints. They are to bring them to the point that they can be harvested. Now, the harvest happens in two ways:

  1. When we are faithful unto death and are put into the ground, you then have been harvested to the grave. Sort of put in storage to wait the resurrection.
  2. The other part of the harvest is the resurrection when the whole crop is brought in before God.

Now, we are “called.” Let’s come here to James, the first chapter, and let’s understand something about our calling; and about what God is doing with us. And as we saw, it is the Father Who is doing it through Christ.

Now, let’s pick it up here in verse 17—James 1:17. And this is why as we will see when we go through these things, that the only day that could be the resurrection day is Pentecost. And the reason that the Church was not correct in understanding about Pentecost is very simple, very simple—they kept it on the wrong day for forty-years. And whenever you keep something on the wrong day, you have partial understanding. Just like the Protestants who keep Sunday. They have the wrong day, so they have some understanding, but it’s mixed with error. So we need to understand that.

Now, let’s come to James 1:17, FV: “Every good act of giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with Whom there is no variation, nor shadow of turning.”That’s why we need to always be consistent and true and faithful in our individual lives to God, because God doesn’t change. There’s no variableness or “shadow of turning.” Now, verse 18: “According to His own will, He begat us by the Word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all His created beings.” Now it says “creation” in the King James, but it is “created beings.”

Just like we learned during the Feast of Unleavened Bread, God is molding us; God is shaping us; He is the Potter, we are the clay. Now, the analogy turns to a harvest, and what God has planted:

  • Then it needs to grow.
  • Then it needs to develop.
  • Then it needs to prosper.
  • Then it needs to be harvested.
  • There’s a time to plant.
  • There’s a time to cultivate.
  • And there’s a time harvest.

Now, many who are listening to my voice and hearing, watching this video, your day of harvest is going to come before the next Pentecost because there are going to brethren who are going to die. And let’s understand this: to die in the faith is the whole purpose and reason why we live and breathe.

Now, let’s come back here to Matthew 13. Now, it’s very interesting that in Matthew 13 we have seven parables concerning the Kingdom of God. And let’s look at them from the point-of-view as Jesus brought it. Now let’s come here to Matthew 13 and let’s see how He began speaking to them in parables. Now let’s pick it up right here in verse one—now we’re going to go through this is quite some detail. Let’s begin right in Matthew 13:1, FV: “Now in that same day, Jesus departed from the house and sat down by the sea. And so great a multitude gathered around Him that He went into a ship and sat down, and all the multitude stood on the shore” (vs 1-2).

Now, there’s an acoustic that happens when you are speaking out over the water. The sound comes in very clearly to everyone—it’s almost like having a great microphone, indeed. Now, verse 3: “And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, ‘Behold, the sower went out to sow… [that is to plant. And didn’t we read what Jesus said: ‘One sows and another reaps?’ Yes indeed!] …And as he was sowing, some of the seed fell by the way; and the birds came and devoured them. And some fell upon the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up because the soil was not deep enough; But after the sun rose, they were scorched; and because they did not have roots, they dried up. And some of the seed fell among the thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. And some fell upon the good ground, and yielded fruit—some a hundredfold, and some sixtyfold, and some thirtyfold. The one who has ears to hear, let him hear’” (vs 3-9).

Now, we’re going to see that expression many times over in the sermon today. Do you have ears to hear? Now, let me just ask you a question: What emotion, what thought, what false doctrine, what bitterness, what thing do you have in your mind that closes off your ears so you won’t hear—or you don’t want to hear?

And think about this, too: Have you been so offended by people and in your, (how shall I put it) in your hatred toward them, or in your anger toward them, or in your, your bitterness toward them, that you, yourself get choked off?

Because what I just read here is like looking right at The Journal, which comes out every couple of months, correct? And the state of the Church of God today is absolutely horrendous! And there are as many false doctrines within the Churches of God as there are in Protestantism. Now, we need to understand that, and why is this happening? Because God has given us choice. And in that choice, even after receiving the Holy Spirit of God, we have to always choose the things that are right and true. And always be consistent.

Now, there are going to be things that will come in against us, and we will see what those are. So, we are the ones that have to watch our lives. We are the ones that are responsible before God—every single one of us, individually. And that as Christ looks at the Church collectively, all of us together. And the ones that He holds the most responsible are the teachers, elders, ministers, because God has chosen to use human beings to speak on His behalf. And woe to the one who speaks on the behalf of God who puts lies in God’s mouth!

Think about it for a minute. If you make God a liar, what do you suppose your reward is going to be? I mean you need to think about it. The God that cannot lie, Who will not lie, Who is honest and true, Who is willing to forgive sin—even gross sin—and promises to give eternal life to those who are faithful and obey.

  • What do you think God is going to do for those who deny Jesus Christ was God before He became a human being in the flesh?
  • What do you think God is going to do for those who reject the Sabbath and reject the Holy Days?
  • What do you think God is going to do to those people who so arrogantly set out to set up their own calendar system and lead people astray to keep the wrong days?
  • What do you think the judgment is going to be upon those who resist the Truth of God?
  • What do you think the judgment is going to be upon those ministers and members—ministers who have a hierarchy and rule over the brethren, and members who love to have a hierarchy so they can work up in position and become great in their own eyes?
  • What do you think is going to happen at the harvest?

Now you see, these are very serious questions we need to ask.

Now, let’s see how Jesus explains these parables. So we just read the first one. Now let’s read the explanation of it:Verse 18: “Therefore, hear the parable of the sower: “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the wicked one comes 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 why there are many called, but few are chosen, because either they get distracted by Satan the devil, or they’re so involved in their own ways and sins, that they don’t want to move from their position to change.

Another thing this also shows us: Can Satan, at any time—if we let him—extract the truth of the understanding of God’s Word out of our minds? Yes!If we give it up! So, what I want you to do is, as we’re going through, I want you to think about yourself, but I want you to think about the history of what has happened in the Churches of God—in our day.

Now verse 20: “Now the one who was sown upon the rocky places is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy.” Oh they’re happy, happy, happy: “Oh, this is good. I’ve never heard this before; Oh, it’s wonderful; I’ve never met people like this; I’m so glad to come to church.” And that’s as far as it goes.

“But because he has no root in himself, he does not endure; for when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word… [And all who live Godly in Jesus Christ will be persecuted. And we will all have trials to overcome to try our faith, correct?] …he is quickly offended” (v 21).

So, which category do you fit in?

Verse 22: “And the one who was sown among the thorns is the one who hears the word, but the cares of this life and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.” And how many people are out there? Now, think about it, think about the judgment of God. Very important that you understand this—concerning riches and wealth in relationship to tithing. Do you think that those today, who preach “there is no tithing in the New Testament” and they’re greatly mistaken because it’s not there exactly the same way that it’s preached in the Old Testament—so don’t use that as an excuse because you don’t understand your Bible or the Word of God. Please remember this: Everything we have comes out of the ground—period! Now, think on that. Think of the great riches that we have.

  • Do you suppose that God is going to look upon you lightly if you say there’s no tithing?
  • Let’s ask it, another question: Do you suppose that if you don’t tithe and give offerings from your heart that you are going to be blessed in the 100 percent of income that you have?
  • Or would you not rather tithe and give offerings and be blessed in what you have left?

Because you see: one category is cursed, another category is blessed. Now the cursings don’t come all at once. But nevertheless, you allow “the deceitfulness of riches”—which are thorns and thistles and barbs to get you—and “chokes the word.” You become so busy that you do not have any time for God. Amazing isn’t it?

Now, verse 23: “But the one who was sown on good ground, this is the one who hears the word and understands, who indeed brings forth fruit and produces—one a hundredfold, another sixtyfold and another thirtyfold.” So that’s the explanation of the first parable. Now, he gives several other parables because we’re going to see there are many different things that take place: concerning attitude; concerning people; concerning true followers of Christ and true teachers and false teachers and false followers.

Verse 24: “And He put another parable before them, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is compared to a man who was sowing good seed in his field; But while men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went away.’ (vs 24-25). This is likened to the infiltration of the Churches of God by the enemies of God, correct? Yes! Isn’t that amazing? Has that happened? Have we seen it? Yes! We’ll even look at some of it here a little later.

“‘Now when the blades sprouted and produced fruit, then the tares also appeared… [So they grow together and look exactly alike until the tare does not begin sprouting any seeds.] …And the servants came to the master of the house and said to him, “Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? Then where did these tares come from?” And he said to them, “A man who is an enemy has done this.” Then the servants said to him, “Do you want us to go out and gather them?” But he said, “No, lest while you are gathering the tares, you also uproot the wheat with them”’” (vs 26-28).

So which is this: The true believers in Christ and God the Father will be able to see and tell the difference because we what? We know them by their fruits! And it even says in Revelation 13: that it looks like a lamb, but speaks like a dragon. And what did Paul say? “If they speak not according to this Word there’s no truth in them.”

  • So that means that God expects us to understand.
  • God expects us to be alert.
  • God expects us to realize that these things will happen.

And so, that’s the second parable. Let’s finish it here. “But he said, ‘No, lest while you are gathering the tares, you also uproot the wheat with them. Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and at the time of the harvest, I will say to the reapers, “Gather the tares first, and bind them into bundles to burn them; but gather the wheat into my granary”’” (vs 29-30). See, we are likened to a harvest, correct? All right, here’s another one, third parable:

Verse 31: “Another parable He presented to them, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is compared to a tiny mustard seed which a man took and sowed in his field; Which indeed is very small among all the seeds; but after it is grown, it is greater than all the herbs, and becomes a tree, so that the birds of heaven come and roost in its branches’” (vs 31-32). It reaches out and gives much to a lot of people, you see. God is interested in the small, the least. He is not interested in great things. And look what happens to a church when they set themselves up to do great things for God. No, let God do the great things for us. And we teach and preach and serve and grow and overcome the way God wants us to.

So here’s the fourth one: “Another parable He spoke to them: ‘The kingdom of heaven is compared to leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour until all was leavened’” (v 33).

Now, we’ll talk about that a little bit more tomorrow: why is leaven here good, but during the days of Unleavened Bread it’s counted as evil? All right, now let’s go on. Let’s see some more of these explanations because Matthew 13 is the key to understanding the harvest, Pentecost and the condition of the Church and the identification of all the problems and enemies we will face. Now, they are brought out a little more in detail later on as we will see.

“So Jesus spoke all these things to the multitudes in parables, and without a parable He did not speak to them; So that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, ‘I will open My mouth in parables; I will utter things hidden from the foundation of the world’” (vs 35).

Now, think about it, brethren, God has given you knowledge of things that have been hidden since the very foundation of the world. And in doing so, He holds us all responsible for it, doesn’t He? So, as we’re going through and looking at these things, I want you to do examination of yourself—as we are told to before Passover—but let’s look at our ongoing condition as well. And to examine the teachings that you believe and to see how you measure up to God; because you have to stand or fall before God. I stand or fall before God. Collectively together we can do what God wants us to do.

So let’s go on. So then, “And after dismissing the multitude, [verse 36] Jesus went into the house. Then His disciples came to Him, saying, ‘Explain to us the parable of the tares of the field.’ [so then He gave the explanation:] And He answered and said to them, ‘The one Who sows the good seed is the Son of man…’”

So, Jesus Christ is active all the time, doing His work as the Head of the Church. In dealing with people that He is calling. That’s why we’ve said, how many times that God wants us to preach to the remnant in the Church and the remnant in the world. Because the Church is scattered and they have to be fed and they have to be brought out of the apostasy and brought out of the false doctrine, and brought out of the clutches of Satan the devil. So we preach to them. Then we preach to the remnant in the world who represent those who have not bowed the knee to Baal; but who are seeking the true God; who are seeking the truth; who are seeking the things that are right.

And so, this is what God gives us responsibility to do. So he said, verse 38: “‘…And the field is the world; and the good seed, these are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one.’”

Now, we need to understand that Satan has his disciples;

  • he has his children dedicated to destroying the Church of God.
  • dedicated to exalting Satan the devil as god on this earth.
  • dedicated to bring about—as we know in prophecy—the one-world system that is coming, and is being shaped right now.

“Now the enemy who sowed them is the devil…” (v 39). So you have Jesus sowing the good seed. You have the devil sowing the evil seed. And if you’ve read the book, The Marketing of Evil, you will know how Satan does it today and how he has so many helpers in technological things to advance his cause. So likewise, we use all the technological things we can to advance the preaching of the Gospel as Jesus opens the door for us and for any of the Churches of God anywhere that truly love and serve God.

“Therefore…” verse 40—yes, “…the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels” (v 39). Now, we’ll see this tomorrow about the resurrection. “…as the tares are gathered and consumed in the fire, so shall it be in the end of this age.” See, He’s going to gather all of the wicked together, and finally, it’s going to be personified where? The battle of Armageddon, correct? Yes, indeed!

Verse 41: “The Son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all the offenders and those who are practicing lawlessness; And they shall cast them into the furnace of fire; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous [transcriber’s correction—speaker’s misquote ‘wicked’] shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. The one who has ears to hear, let him hear” (vs 41-43).

Now, let’s look at the fifth parable here, follows right along. That’s why Matthew 13 is so very, very important. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is compared to treasure hidden in a field; which when a man finds, he conceals, and for the joy of finding it, goes and sells everything that he has, and buys that field” (v 44).

Now, remember what Jesus told the “rich man” in Matthew 19, paraphrased: The “rich man” came and said, “What am I going to do to inherit eternal life?”

And Jesus said, “Well, don’t call Me good, there’s only One that’s good and that is God. But, if you will enter into life, keep the commandments.”

And he said, “Oowhooo, I’ve got it make, which ones, Lord?”

And then He listed off the commandments. And some people say, “Well, He never said the Sabbath, so there’s no need in keeping the Sabbath.” Well, you have to understand, they were living in a Sabbath-keeping society. So that was not the question.

So, he answered and said, “Well, I’ve done all of these things from my youth.”

And Jesus said, “You lack one thing. Go sell everything that you have and give to the poor and come and follow Me.”

And he went away sad because he had riches as his god and his idol.

Now think about these—we’re coming down to the point in the history of mankind and in the history of the Church that we need to understand these things are coming. So then, he gives up everything that he has to obtain eternal life.

  • What have you given up?
  • What are you giving up?
  • What are you willing to give up?

Now, let’s go to parable number six: “Again, the kingdom of heaven is compared to a merchant seeking beautiful pearls; Who, after finding one very precious pearl, went and sold everything that he had, and bought it” (vs 45-46). Now, what do all of these things show? These things show a total dedication to God. Correct? Yes.

Now, let’s look at parable number seven—verse 47: “Again, the kingdom of heaven is compared to a dragnet cast into the sea, gathering in every kind of fish; Which after it was filled was drawn up on shore; and they sat down and collected the good into vessels, and the unfit they threw away” (vs 47-48). Going through, getting the good ones, throwing away the other ones.

Well, you know, too many people today like to go out and get the unclean fish and crabs and shrimp and lobsters and oysters and eat all of those things that God said, “Don’t eat!” The good fish—“This is the way it will be in the end of the age: the angels shall go out, and shall separate the wicked from among the righteous, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire; there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth” (vs 49-50).

Now, let’s see how these things follow along in Revelation 2 and Revelation 3. Now, I got ahead of myself a little bit. Let’s not go the Revelation 2 or 3 yet. Let’s come to 2 Timothy 3:1, because we need to mix in there what’s happening at the end-time. How the conditions are, because this will, will help us understand what we need to be doing. And seeing all the things and all the forces that are out there in the world; in society; in people’s lives; in the way that things are done; and the whole setting of everything. And this is important to realize because when we look at the world, we can become very complacent and say, “Oooo, I’m glad I’m not like they are. My, look at how evil they are.” We have a lot of things to fight and overcome, don’t we? Yes, indeed.

Let’s come to 2 Timothy 3:1—and here are also some of the things that tie in with the parables that we read:

  • as to why some of the seed did not proper;
  • why they became unprofitable;
  • why they were drawn back into the world.

Verse 1: “Know this also, that in the last days perilous times shall come…” And we’re living in them. And here’s the reason: “For men will be lovers of self…” (v 2). Narcissistic and egotistical and self-serving. All they are concerned about are themselves, their wealth, their money, their power, their ambitions—“lovers of self.”

“…lovers of money, braggarts, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy…” (v 2). It’s like watching television. Do some channel-surfing and you will see all these things just leap out before your very eyes.

“Without natural affection, implacable, slanderers, without self-control… [and that’s certainly the highlight of the day—‘Oh, well, I’m not responsible. I’m not mentally competent—heee, heee, heee, I know I really am.’] …savage, despisers of those who are good, Betrayers, reckless, egotistical, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God” (vs 3-4). Is that not true?

  • Look at all of the sports.
  • Look at all of the things that people can do.
  • The games they can play.
  • The things that they have.
  • And the movies that they go to.
  • The television that they watch.
  • The music and concerts that they go to.

“Lovers of pleasure.” Everything has to be cast into the thing of having fun!

And so do yourself an educational favor. Next time that these commercials come on, listen to them, and then the next time they come around, watch them without the sound. The first time you hear, “Well, take this medicine and everybody’s happy, happy, happy; fine, fine, fine; good, good, good; healthy, healthy, healthy; wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. Trust the drug company. Trust the doctor. How wonderful and great this is. And if you take this or if you take that you’re just going to be perfect. And if you can’t sleep we’ll take care of you. And if you don’t have enough energy when you get up we’ll take care of you and you’ll be happy, happy, happy every minute of every day if you follow us. But watch out! Because you could have liver disease, heart failure, kidney failure, lung collapse, indigestion, kidney destruction. Oh, but you’re going to die happy!”

And you would think by watching all of the, all of the commercials on television, there’s nothing wrong in the world. And then you watch the news and you see everything’s wrong in the world! Amazing, isn’t it?

“…lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.” And nothing can prove that anymore than all the activities that take place on the Sabbath, because you have love God to keep the Sabbath. And that starts at sundown Friday. And you just look at your newspaper: all the activities that start Friday night. And that’s the favorite day that Satan likes to use to corrupt youth. Get them out there and bring them into drugs, and into sex, and into all of the perversions that is highlighted on MTV, and in the schools, and in the movies. A generation of young people that barely have mush for brains. Amazing, isn’t it?

Now notice: “Having an outward appearance of godliness… [‘Oh yes, we believe the Bible. We believe God. We know.’ No, they don’t!] …but denying the power of true godliness. But as for you,[Paul tells Timothy] turn away from all these [things]” (v 5). Do not let them capture you in the grips of Satan the devil!

“For from men such as these come those who are worming their way into houses, and are gaining control over empty-headed women… [just watch ABC and the panel that is on there with, who’s this woman? Rosie O’Donnell, that’s it. And watch all of the others—air-heads—men and women, it’s amazing!] …given over to various sins, being driven by all kinds of lust. They are always learning… [Oh, they’re educated, they have degrees] …but are never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (vs 6-7).

“Now just as Jannes and Hanbres stood against Moses, in the same manner also these are brazenly standing against the truth; they are men of depraved minds, reprobate in respect to the faith. But they will proceed no further [because Christ is coming], because their folly will become clearly evident to everyone, just as theirs also was” (vs 8-9). Quite an amazing, so that’s, that’s the way that we are living today, isn’t it? Yes! Now, let’s come to Revelation. Let’s come to Revelation, the first chapter, and let’s understand something as we saw earlier. Jesus is the One Who is the “sower.” Jesus is also the Head of the Church. And as we’re going see, with the seven churches here in Revelation two and three, as Jesus brings out in Revelation, the first chapter, that He is in the midst of His Church. And He’s got a lot of things to say to a lot of brethren in His Church who need to get their lives squared around. He hasn’t given up on them He offers repentance and mercy and forgiveness.

Now let’s begin right here in verse 10: “I was in the Spirit on the day of the Lord; and I heard a loud voice like a trumpet behind me, Saying, ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last’; and, ‘What you see, write in a book… [and that’s why we have the Bible written, because God wants it written, you see.] …and send it to the churches that are in Asia…” (Rev. 1:10-11, FV).

Now, these churches represent a prophetic view of the Churches of God from the time that it began to the time that Jesus returns. And it represents not only the history, it represents the attitude, it shows the main key problems that will come upon the Church.

Now notice—we’ll get to the names of the churches in just a bit—let’s come to verse 12 [transcriber’s correction]: “And I turned to see the voice that spoke with me; and when I turned, I saw seven golden lampstands… [now, these have to be in a circle because of verse 13:] And in the midst [or the middle] of the seven lampstands… [so, they’re lined out like a circle, right?] …one like the Son of man, clothed in a garment reaching to the feet, and girded about the chest with a golden breastplate. And His head and hair were like white wool, white as snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire…” (vs 12-14).

This is Jesus in His glory. Now, I want you to understand. If you’re going to be arguing with God, you’re going to confront Christ one day directly and in His glory He is going to, to make it very clear that He is the Head of the Church, and no man!

Part 2

Now let’s continue right here in Revelation, the first chapter, before we get to Revelation two and three. Notice a little bit more about Jesus. Jesus Christ is in charge—we need to understand that. That’s why no man is to put himself between Jesus Christ and the people.

“And in His right hand He had seven stars, and a sharp two-edged sword went out of His mouth… [Jesus Christ means business. He is giving eternal life. And He wants us perfected. And if there has to be correction for that perfection then He is going to do it with His word] …and His countenance was as the sun shining in its full power. [Then John said:] And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as if dead; but He laid His right hand upon me, saying to me, ‘Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last, Even the one Who is living; for I was dead, and behold, I am alive into the ages of eternity. Amen. And I have the keys of the grave and of death” (vs 16-18).

So you see everyone, whether they like it or not, believe it or not, are going to have to deal with Jesus Christ. That’s just the way it’s going to be. So then He gave the “mystery” of the seven stars and the seven lampstands: “The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches; and the seven lampstands that you saw are the seven churches” (v 20).

Now, we’re not going to go through in detail in all of these things, because we’re going to add some other Scriptures, which support some of the things that go on here. But let’s understand: one of the first things that came along, and Jesus warned of this over and over and over and over again: so did Peter, so did Paul, so did John. And now Christ is emphasizing it here, again: false prophets, false apostles! Yet, brethren in the Church still fall for false doctrines and false teachings

  • because they don’t know their Bibles, and
  • because they’re not studying and praying, and
  • because there are certain men who want power—so they rise up.

Now, we’re going to see this. Now, Ephesus tested the false prophets, resisted them. And there are some brethren who have done that—resisted the false prophets, and have come out of it. But here comes a great (how shall we say) almost fatal flaw, which a lot of people fall into. Very similar to Laodiceanism—not quite.

But here it says, Revelation 2:4, FV—to the angel at Ephesus, He says: “Nevertheless, I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” And when you leave off the first love, which is the primary love, which is what? Loving God with all your heart and mind and soul and being. What’s going to happen? Your whole spiritual life is going to tone down. Your whole spiritual life will be just like a light on a rheostat and you turn it down and down and down and down and next thing you know it’s very, very dim.

Now, remember what Jesus said here. So this is your particular case because we have a lot of that combined with Laodiceanism, we have both of them at the beginning church and the ending church, we have very similar problems. But in the ending church they’re subject to all kinds of sins. Whereas the beginning church started out very righteous and then, what did they do? They lost their first love. They became ho-hum.

So Jesus says, “Therefore, remember from where you have fallen, and repent, and do the first works, for if you do not, I will come to you quickly; and I will remove your lampstand out of its place unless you repent” (v 5). See, we always, brethren, have to be in a state of repentance before God, because that’s the very nature of human nature, that we have sin within us—and we need to overcome. That’s why in the series of The Keys to Answered Prayer—what is the one thing we need to do every day? Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us! Right? Yes! And so, what happens when people get complacent like this? I’m ok, you’re ok—just like the world.

Now they did have one thing that they hated; that was the works of the Nicolaitanes or the hierarchalsetup. So he has here—verse 7: “The one who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches…. [ALL the churches—because things like this can happen in any of the Churches of God, anywhere at anytime, and God calls us to repentance. If we are going to be in the first resurrection, we’re going to have to repent.]. …To the one who overcomes I will give the right to eat of the tree of life that is in the midst of the paradise of God.”

Now, church at Smyrna—very interesting. Doctrinally: probably just understood the basics. But they had a love and a zeal for God, and they were to stand for God even though they were persecuted. Satan threw them in jail and they had tribulation—severe tribulation—for ten years. And God said to them, He said: “…Be faithful [verse 10] unto death, and I will give you a crown of life…. [And again He says:] …The one who has an ear… [now, I want you to tie that together where we started, with Matthew 13] …let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (vs 10-11). And this is Jesus Christ talking.

“And to the angel of the church in Pergamos, write: ‘These things says He Who has the sharp two-edged sword” (v 12). Now, here is a church that is living right where Satan’s throne is. And when you’re right in the middle of the world, like they were, and you allow yourself to become a part of this world, a part of the Satanic system that is out there, notice what happens: He says, verse 13: “I know your works and where you dwell, where the throne of Satan is; but you are holding fast My name, and did not deny My faith, even in the days in which Antipas was My faithful witness [so they were faithful up to a certain point], who was killed among you, where Satan dwells.”

But what happens? Same thing, just like you read the history of the kings. Righteous king dies, an evil king takes over. And the people follow along, right along with the king, and idolatry and stupidity and false doctrine, right? So what happened with this church. It had a lot of false doctrine come in. A lot of false preachers come in. Let’s read it here: Verse 14: “But I have a few things against you because you have there those who hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to cast a stumbling block before the children if Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols and to commit fornication.”

So, they had idolatry, they had spiritual and physical fornication. And they also had the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes (v 15), which Jesus says He “hates.” Why? Because that oppressive, hierarchal government grinds the brethren down into the ground and takes advantage of them when it should not be doing it. That’s why Jesus hates it. And He hates it because it puts men between the brethren and God. And if there’s any one lesson that needs to be learned in the Church of God today, that is this lesson!

Now notice what happens. And so Jesus is serving warning to all the Churches of God who do this. He says, “Repent! For if you do not repent, I will come to you quickly, and will make war against them with the sword of My mouth” (v 16). Jesus Christ Himself is going to fight against those who do that. So we need to understand it. Now you see, brethren, God has called us to eternal life. God has called us for the greatest thing that there is, as we will see tomorrow. And for those who are teachers and ministers, they better listen up. And they better not set themselves up above the brethren. And they better not set themselves up above God! Because that’s what happens. And even in the Churches of God today, there are so many hierarchal, hard-fisted, just top-down oppressive government—when Jesus said: “You shall not do so!”

And God’s judgment is coming! And God’s judgment is going to be upon them—and any who participate in it as far as being ministers, and any of the brethren who go along with it because they love the social and entertainment factor that they receive in that church, you see.

Now, let’s look and see something concerning false prophets. There are those false prophets, which come straight out of the cauldron of Babylon. We have in Acts, the eighth chapter, Simon Magus. Let’s go there for just a minute. And they want to come into the Church. Remember we saw how that the tares were sown. So if we are alert, we can keep some of these tares from being sown within the Church.

So what happened. Let’s see about Simon—Simon Magus. We’ll just look at his character, see what he did. Acts 8:9, FV: “But therewas a certain man named Simon, who had from earlier times been practicing sorcery in the city [that is of Samaria] and astounding the nation of Samaria, proclaiming himself to be some great one.” And he was wanting to take the name of Jesus and add it to his Gnostic teachings. Now, I’ve got to bring a sermon here soon which is going to show that, yes, this is happening again, in exactly the same way. And certain elements of this also have crept into the Churches of God. So those without coming in to try and take over.

“To him they had all given heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, ‘This man is the great power of God.’ Now they were giving heed to him because he had for a long time bewitched them with sorceries” (v 10). So we have those without, the servants of Satan. Remember, Satan is planting seeds trying to bring them within the Churches of God.

Now let’s see, come to Acts, the twentieth chapter. Let’s see where else false prophets will arise. This is very interesting. Acts 20, and let’s pick it up here—Paul is talking to the elders—the elders at Ephesus. And what did we read about the church at Ephesus? They lost their first love. And what happens? False prophets rise within the ranks of the eldership and ministry.

Let’s read it. Paul gave warning to them. And he said to all, all the elders—verse 28—Acts 20:28, FV: “Take heed therefore to yourselves…” Now, the first responsibility of any elder, teacher, minister is to what? Take heed to himself.

  • Maintain the relationship with God.
  • Maintain the understanding of the Word of God.
  • Grow in grace and knowledge the way that God wants him to.
  • Teach the brethren.
  • Feed the flock.
  • Shepherd the lambs.

That’s his responsibility. Not to exalt himself. Now, when you lose your first love, there are those who will do that. And we’ve seen it. Yes, it’s even taking place today! And there even erstwhile ministers who have not been ordained, who want to stand up and become ministers. Well, are you ready for the correction of God? Now, if you’re truly desiring to be an overseer—as it says there in 1 Timothy 3, you’re “seeking a good work.” But for what purpose do men stand up and start preaching false doctrine. And stand up and start bringing false accusation against brethren—and against me personally. And people sit there: “oooooooo”

  • You know, God called us to think!
  • God called us to be faithful.
  • God called us to use His Spirit.
  • God called us to understand His Word and Truth.

So, here’s a warning given: “Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which He purchased with His own blood” (v 28).

All the brethren belong to God, so everyone who’s an erstwhile leader, you better sit up and take notice—because God’s judgment is going to come upon you, sooner or later. And remember, the judgment of God always comes when you least expect it, and in a way you least expect. And sometimes the judgment of God comes where you are so self-deceived that you think that this judgment is, in fact, success! Until you finally stand at the end of all that has been done.

Now notice what Paul said: “For I know this: That after my departure grievous wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock… [we’ve already talked about that, didn’t we? Yes] …And from among your own selves… [you who are right here in front of me. Those that he taught. Those that he ordained.] …from among your own selves men will rise up speaking perverse things… [contrary to the doctrines, right? Yes] …to draw away disciples after themselves. Watch therefore, remembering that for three years I ceased not to admonish each one night and day with tears” (vs 29-31).

  • And how many warnings have gone out?
  • And how many warnings have been sent?
  • But how many people pay attention?
  • How many ministers are so lifted up in their pride that they won’t humble themselves to stand for the Truth?
  • And to stand against a tyrannical hierarchy?
  • And where one leader of a church commands people to break the fifth commandment of honoring your father and mother?

That if you are in his church, and your mother and father are in another church, you cannot have anything to do with them. And so severe was this, and so despondent was one man over this that he committed suicide. And know for sure, God’s punishment is coming upon that minister and those kinds of attitudes that are in the Church of God which is supposed to be what? Loving God, loving each other, loving your neighbor—yea, and loving even your enemy!

So think about it. It comes because of men just like this. The warnings have gone out. The words are in the Bible. So he says: “And now I commit you, brethren, to God and to the Word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. [then he says:] I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or clothing” (vs 32-33). And neither do I.

Now, let’s go on. Let’s see what Paul wrote concerning these kinds of teachers that rise up. And actually what they are doing to themselves. So let’s read it. Let’s come here to 1 Timothy, the first chapter, because you see, this is a reality of the seven churches represented by the seven weeks of the harvest.

And living in the world that we are living in today, which we covered, and seeing the things that are taking place, God is judging all of us—do we love Him with all our heart and mind and soul and being? Do we really believe the Truth or are we going, are we so weak and, and faithless that we are going to believe any doctrine that comes along. Like one, one man says: “Well, you know, Jesus didn’t exist until He was conceived in the womb of the virgin Mary.” That is blaspheme!

  • And what does he think he’s going to do?
  • What is his judgment going to be?
  • What is the judgment going to be upon the brethren who follow such things.

You know, we need to stop and think!

Now let’s read here in 1 Timothy, the first chapter. Let’s see some of the instructions to Timothy. And we’re going to see, also some of the things that he instructs on what to do that is right. Because we can tie this together, we can tie this together with the church at Thyatira, with Jezebel, who taught the depths of Satan. We can tie this together with the church at Sardis that is nearly dead, has a few little, eeny-teeny-weeny works that they are doing. And some of them are, are about to be blotted out of the book of life. And Jesus said, “Now if you just do the minimum I won’t blot your name out.” And we’ll talk about the Laodiceans a little later.

But all of these things are reflective of false teachings, lack of love, lack of understanding of the calling and where they’re going. Now, let’s pick it up here in verse three—and let’s notice these things were happening back then, and now we have, now we have these things recorded for us so we can learn not to do these same things. But what happens? People end up doing the same things! Amazing, isn’t it? Verse 3: “When I was going to Macedonia, I exhorted you to remain in Ephesus, in order that you might solemnly charge some not to teach other doctrines” (1 Tim. 1:3, FV).

Now, doctrine is IMPORTANT! Because doctrines are the teachings of God.

“Nor to pay attention to myths [now, we’ll see about myths here a little later on] and endless genealogies, which lead to empty speculations rather than to edification from God, which is in faith” (v 4).

And that’s what happens?

  • It leads to disillusionment.
  • It leads to scattering of the brethren.
  • It leads to anger and hatred.
  • All of those things.

Now, verse 5: “Now the purpose of the commandment [now that means commandment and message of Christ] …is love out of a pure heart, and a good conscience, and genuine faith… [That’s the whole goal of the commandment of Paul and Christ to Timothy.] …From which some, having missed the mark, have turned aside unto vain jangling… [And any of these doctrines that people work up—‘a little paper’—and think that they have done a magnificent work. And I read them and frankly, they’re just plain stupid. So people want to fall for them. Fall for them. They miss the mark!

Now, here’s the key: “Desiring [or you could put there: ‘lusting’] to be teachers of the law…” (v 7).

“Oh I want to be a minister. I want to be an elder. Whooowhoowhoo—maybe I could be a preaching elder.” And in the church where we were in we had the hierarchy, didn’t we? Then we had ‘local elders,” and then we had some who really were not good local elders, so they were local, local elders. And then we had others who were “preaching elders.” OOO-now, that’s like a corporal moving up and getting stripes on his suit. Then we had pastors—whooo-oooo, that’s like becoming a first lieutenant. And then we had district superintendents—that’s like becoming a colonel. And then we had evangelists, didn’t we? Yes! ooooooooo, that’s like becoming a brigadier general, correct? Then we had the only apostle on earth—and that’s like becoming the only six-star general in the world. Everyone get in, and they want to climb, they want to climb, and some still do it, right? Yes!

“Desiring to be teachers of the law, neither understanding what they are saying, nor what they are strongly affirming” (v 7). They don’t even understand it.

Now, put your mind around this: Some men have recently said you don’t need to tithe—because a tithe comes out of the land. Where pray tell does everything come from? It comes from the land—even you! You’re made of the dust, so am I. So get real. “However,” they said, “you go ahead and tithe to yourself so you can keep the Feast.” Now, if that is not mind-boggling and stupid—you go figure it out. And yet, people “Oooooo, what a wonderful thing. I never heard this before.” Really amazing, isn’t it? Yes.

Now, verse 8: “Now we know that the law is good, if anyone uses it lawfully… [Use it the correct way, the way God intended.] …Understanding this: that the law is not enacted for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinful, for the unholy and profane, for slayers of fathers and slayers of mothers, for murderers. For fornication, for homosexuals, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and for any other thing that is opposed to sound doctrine. According to the gospel of the glory of the blessed God, with which I was entrusted” (vs 8-11). So that says an awful lot.

Anyone want to jump up and be a teacher? Think about it!

All right, let’s look and see. They also have very willing—very, very willing—don’t they? Yes! People who follow them. Yes! Now let’s read it here. Let’s come to 2 Timothy, the fourth chapter, all right. 2 Timothy 4—so he gives a charge in what to do: preach the Word, be in season and out of season, verse 3, 2 Timothy 4, FV: “For there shall come a time when they will not tolerate sound doctrine…” Have all kinds of wild speculations, false doctrines, lies and so forth. And even there were some, that Paul said, were in the Church who were saying that there is no resurrection. Now, think about that. And that is what all of Catholicism and Protestantism today believes—you go to heaven.

“…but according to their own lusts…” (v 3). So, not only do you have false minister from without coming in, sneaking in, conspirators, and we’ve seen how that has happened, haven’t we? And you have men within the Church rising up to become teachers, not knowing what they are saying or affirming. And wanting to be great leaders of themselves, they’ve got willing, they’ve got willing accomplices.

Verse 3: “For there shall come a time when they will not tolerate sound doctrine…”

  • Because they lost their first love.
  • Because they’ve given themselves over to wrong doctrine.
  • They have learned the ways of Satan.
  • They have become dead in their relationship with Christ.
  • Or they have become lukewarm!

So, they won’t endure sound doctrine.

“…but according to their own lusts they shall accumulate to themselves a great number of teachers, having ears itching to hear what satisfies their cravings; And they shall turn away their own ears from the truth; and they shall be turned aside unto myths” (vs 3-4).

Now, know for sure that in the scheme of the harvest of the seven churches, there is going to be correction to correct this, and there is going to be expulsion from God and removing of the Holy Spirit for those who won’t repent. Now, we need to understand that.

Now, let’s come back here to Revelation, the second chapter, and let’s see that again. Let’s see how this is going to happen. Let’s see what Jesus told those in Thyatira who allowed all of these things to be taught within the Church. Now notice, he says that they taught “My servants to commit fornication and eat things sacrificed to idols” (Rev. 2:20). And what is the first thing that Satan always likes to do and false prophets always like to do: change the Passover; change the footwashing; change the day; combine the 14th and 15th or to eliminate the 14th and do the 15th.

And that then becomes “eating things sacrificed to idols” because an idol can be a false doctrine as well as physical thing that you bow down to, right? Yes, indeed!

“And I gave her time to repent of her fornication [Rev. 2:21], but she did not repent. 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… [They are going to lose salvation. There’s a warning, right there.] …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…. [Then He gives a little space of relief.] …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, as they speak; I will not cast upon you any other burden. But hold fast that you have until I come. And to the one who overcomes, and keeps My works unto the end, I will give authority over the nations; And he shall shepherd them with an iron rod, as vessels of pottery are broken in pieces; as I have also received from My Father. And I will give him the morning star. [Now notice:] The one who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (vs 21-29).

So the question is on this day 49: Do you have an ear to hear? Are you willing to listen?

Now, you know what it says to those in Sardis: “…you have a name as if you are alive, but are dead” (Rev. 3:1, FV).

And we know what it says to the Laodiceans. But let’s understand, of all the seven Churches of God, only the Laodiceans talk back to God! They say, “God, we’re rich and increased with goods, we have it made, we have need of nothing” (paraphrased).

And so that’s why there’s this “spewing out of the mouth” of Christ. And that’s why the Church has been scattered the way it has today. And that’s why God is still dealing with His Church. Now He says to the Laodiceans: “REPENT!” He says, “I’m still giving you a chance. I’m standing out here knocking at the door. And if you will open up by repentance, I will come into you and sup with you and you with Me. Be zealous therefore, and REPENT!” That’s what God says. And this is what the Church of God needs to do, if you want to make it to the 50th day harvest—you better repent!

Now, let’s come to 1 Timothy and 2 Timothy and let’s see the charges that are given to those who are the true ministers of God that Paul gave to Timothy. Let’s come here to 1 Timothy, the first chapter. This is important to understand. So any who are teachers and elders, whether you’re with the Christian Biblical Church of God or your not with the Christian Biblical Church of God, doesn’t make any difference, you judge yourself before God and see, are you following these charges.

1 Timothy 1:3, FV, we read it: “When I was going to Macedonia, I exhorted you to remain in Ephesus, in order that you might solemnly charge some not to teach other doctrines. Nor to pay attention to myths…” (vs 3-4). So there’s one.

Let’s look at the other one over here in verse 18—here’s a charge that he’s giving personally to Timothy. Verse 18, 1 Timothy 1, FV: “This charge I am personally committing to you, my son Timothy, in accordance with the prophecies that were made long ago concerning you; in order that by them you yourself might wage a good war, Holding to the faith and a good conscience… [So that’s a charge. Now notice verse 19:] For some, having cast aside a good conscience, have made shipwreck in regard to the faith. Of whom are Hymeneus and Alexander, whom I turned over to Satan in order that they may learn not to blaspheme” (vs 18-20).

So you see, God’s judgment is, if you don’t follow God and do what Jesus said, sooner or later the judgment’s going to come. And the ultimate will be, being turned over to Satan. Now, we’ve seen that in the parable of the sowers. We’ve seen that in the situation with Simon Magus. We’ve seen that in concerning gross sin within the congregation (in 1 Cor. 5), and so forth.

Now let’s see the next charge—1 Timothy 5, let’s read it here in verse 21. You want to know what to do an elder: “I charge you before God and the Lord Jesus Christ and the elect angels, that you observe these things without prejudice, and let nothing be done by partiality” (1 Tim. 5:21, FV). That’s how a ministry is to be operated.

Now, let’s come here to chapter six and verse thirteen. Now here’s a charge that he says here concerning this—let’s come back here to, come back here to verse eleven. “”But you, O man of God, flee these things… [that is after money and temptation and foolish and hurtful lusts and things like this] …and pursue righteousness… [here’s the life of an elder] …godliness, faith, love, endurance and meekness. Fight the good fight of faith! Take hole of eternal life to which you were also called, and did profess a good profession in the presence of many witnesses. I charge you in the sight of God, Who gives life to every living thing, and Jesus Christ, Who in testifying before Pontius Pilate gave the exemplary profession of faith, That you keep this commandment… [all the instructions given in 1 & 2 Timothy and we can add on to that, Titus. And we can add on to that the other instructions that we find in the New Testament.] …without fault and without rebuke until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ; Which in His own times the blessed and only Sovereign will make known, the King of kings and Lord of lords (1 Tim. 6:11-15, FV). So, we have that charge.

Let’s come to 2 Timothy, the fourth chapter. We were there but let’s read this charge here, because this becomes very important. How should a minister preach? And what should he preach on? Well, let’s read it.

After telling him that all Scripture was God-breathed (in chapter 3); he says in chapter four and verse one: “I charge you, therefore, in the sight of God… [this is as good as God physically (or how should we say) literally coming before you and commanding you] …even the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is ready to judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the Word!…” (2 Tim. 4:1-2, FV).

That’s what’s to be preached: The Word of God. Not nicey-nicey little tales, not emotional things—although there is emotion in truth and repentance and love and sincerity, that is true. But not in, in great productions, you know. And if you watch some of these Protestant ministers, what do they do? They get in front of the camera, run back and forth in front of the people, they tell stories, they cry, they weep and they have everyone all centered in and focused in on himself. NO! The focus is on God the Father and Jesus Christ through the Word of God.

“…Preach the Word! Be urgent in season and out of season…” (v 2) Showing they were keeping the Holy Days and everything, you see. This is what needs to be done. Now, when it is done, those who hear it: do you receive it? Do you act upon it? Do you make it part of your life? Are you being educated through the Word of God, so that you likewise can stand. Because when you look at the scope of the whole church, as pictured by the seven weeks of the harvest—and we’ll talk about the 50th day tomorrow—“be urgent in season and out of season.”

“…convict…” (v 2). So that you know right and wrong and you are SURE and absolutely convicted that it is true. Not wishy-washy, mealy-mouthed, two-sides of the fence, standing in the middle.

“…rebuke…” [There’s a time to rebuke—and]…encourage…” (v 2). Because we are to be encouraged. We are to be uplifted. That’s why we have said over and over again, you walk in faith, believe in hope and live in love. And all of those things are to encourage us and uplift us. But you see, there comes a time when things need to be said. And there comes a time when there needs to be some of the things for the correction and conviction. Now notice:

“…with all patience and doctrine” (v 2).

First sign of apostasy is: love unites and doctrine divides! I’ve seen it over and over and over again. You go back and you study the seven churches yourself, there in Revelation two and three. Let’s see the ideal that we are to come to.

Let’s come back to Revelation three. So through it all, through it all, what are we to be doing and what is the model that we are to follow? Let’s come here, Revelation three, and let’s pick it up here in verse seven.

“And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia…” (Rev. 3:7, FV). And everyone wants to be a Philadelphian. No one wants to admit he’s been a Laodicean. No one wants say, “Well, I’m a Sardisite. Boy, I was almost dead.” There are some few who will do that. How many will say, “Oh, I enjoyed all those false doctrines and came from the Catholic Church.” Or like Pergamos, that you “rule with an iron fist.” Or like Ephesus, that you “lose your first love.” No, you can’t be a church of brotherly love unless you love God first. Very simple.

He says: “…write: ‘These things says the Holy One, the one Who is true; the one Who has the key of David, Who opens and no one shuts, and Who shuts and no one opens. I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, and no one has the power to shut it because you have a little strength, and have kept My word, and have not denied My name” (vs 7-8).

Then there’s going to be a reversal of how Satan affects the Church.

“Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who proclaim themselves to be Jews and are not, but do lie—behold, I will cause them to come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. Because you have kept the word of My patience…” (v 9). Always faithful day in and day out, week in and week out, Sabbath in and Sabbath out, month in and month out, Holy Day in and Holy Day out, all the time—FAITHFUL! “Kept My word.”

“…I also will keep you from the time of temptation which is about to come upon the whole world to try those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly; hold fast that which you have so that no one may take away your crown” (vs 10-11).

Because, brethren, there are a lot of “crown snatchers” out there and Satan wants to get yours.

“The one who overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall not go out any more; and I will write upon him the name of My God, and the name of the city of My God, the new Jerusalem, which will come down out of heaven from My God; and I will write upon him My new name” (v 12).

Now let’s finish where we began: “The one who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (v 13). So that you will be in the complete harvest of the seven weeks that depict the harvest of the Church.

Day 49—2007

7 Week Harvest

Scriptural References

  • Deuteronomy 16:9-10 (KJV)
  • John 4:32-38
  • Matthew 9:35-38
  • James 1:17-18
  • Matthew 13:1-9, 18-50
  • Matthew 19 (paraphrased)
  • 2 Timothy 3:1-9
  • Revelation 1:10-14, 16-18, 20
  • Revelation 2:4-5, 7, 10-16
  • Acts 8:9-10
  • Acts 20:28-33
  • 1 Timothy 1:3-11
  • 2 Timothy 4:3-4
  • Revelation 2:20-29
  • Revelation 3:1
  • 1 Timothy 1:3-4, 18-20
  • 1 Timothy 5:21
  • 1 Timothy 6:11-15
  • 2 Timothy 4:1-2
  • Revelation 3:7-13

All Scriptures from The New Testament in it’s Original Order, A Faithful Version, by Fred R. Coulter—except where noted.

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Leviticus 23
  • Revelation 13
  • Matthew 19
  • 1 Corinthians 5

Also referenced:

  • Video—Counting to Pentecost by Fred R. Coulter
  • Book—God’s Plan for Mankind Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days by Fred R. Coulter
  • The Journal
  • Book—Marketing of Evil by David Kupelian
  • Tape series—Keys to Answered Prayer