Paul's Passing Thoughts

The Potter’s House: Israel and Revelation 12

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on August 31, 2014

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All right. Tonight we’re going to be looking at Revelation 12, if you want to go ahead and turn there. The big news right now is the conflict between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, and per the usual when Israel is in the news like this, the anti-Israel rhetoric is ratcheted up to a great degree. I figured we’d weigh in on this before we continue on our Roman series next week. Our particular interest coincides with our ministry, which is research on Reformed Theology, and there is no lack of discussion to be found when discussing the Reformed view on Israel. The subject of Israel clashes with the Reformed thought in many areas.

First, let me say this. Anti-Israeli sentiment is simply satanic, all right? When it gets right down to it, the Bible in Ephesians 6:12 says that we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood. Primarily, that’s a good thing to remember. But against the rulers, against authorities, against cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil and heavenly places. Save that thought. Hold on to that thought because I really want to apply it to what we’re going to be learning in Revelation 12, okay? This is something that we ought to remember often that humanity is in the middle of cosmic warfare between Satan and God. Our subject today is not at all far off from what we’ve been looking at in regard to predestination and election. The more we learn, the more we suspect that God has predetermined the outcome of this cosmic war as way of election. So what we’ve learned is, learned positively from other places in the word of God, that God elects outcomes, okay? We all want a good ending to the story, right? And he’s elected groups of people to bring about that end. But as we move through time from past history to the future, people have free will to take sides in the warfare, okay? The Bible states that God created hell for the devil and his angels. Matthew 25:24 states, “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into eternal life prepared for the devil and his angels.'” So notice that when people are judged by God in the end, they are sent to a place that was not prepared for them. I think this is worthy of notation that man did not create hell, or that God did not create hell for men. Well, if God has predetermined some for destruction and some for salvation, why wouldn’t it be prepared for them? Add to that that Christ died for all people, John 3:16 and 2 Peter 2:1, and God is not willing that any should perish, 2 Peter 3:9 and 1 Timothy 2:3-9. Also, God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked, Ezekiel 18:32.

One thing we must understand is that the Reformed tradition struggles with the grammatical biblical view of Israel for a couple of reasons. First, this whole Promised Land thing, the geography thing, emphasis on earthly soil does not fit in to the Reformation’s Gnostic view of the visible or the material being evil and the invisible being good. A plot of land also means a literal kingdom on earth for Israel, which throws their whole progressive justification soteriology and the contradiction in confusion, okay? An actual literal plot of land is good for a dispensational view but not a Reformed view of progressive justification. Secondly, and worse yet, Israel as a nation, having salvation ramification completely turns the Reformed applecart upside down. The Reformed crowd likes to make a very distinct separation between Israel as a nation and what they call spiritual Israel.

Before we get into Revelation 12, a word about confused Calvinists. Always remember that Israel is a big problem for the tie that binds. Gnosticism with progressive justification is the application. There will be many variances of the central idea but progressive justification, the idea that salvation isn’t a finished work, or that justification likewise is not a finished work is still the underlying false gospel that drives most denominations in our day, especially those of the Reformed sort. Now I think around 2009, John MacArthur Jr. opened up an annual shepherd’s conference with a controversial message propagating the following. Supersessionism or replacement theology contradicts election. Israel is elect, so the idea that the Church replaced Israel must be a contradiction. The message caused a lot of stir, and MacArthur’s Calvinist friends thought that they had been ambushed at the conference. But the idea that one’s election can be lost is in no wise contradictory to what Calvin taught. So what John MacArthur was teaching is that, hey, you know, we Calvinists, we believe in election. So how can you not be for a dispensational view to some point of the Bible? MacArthur is confused about many aspects of Reformed Theology, and this is one of them. Calvin believed that the called were a class of elect who are temporarily illumined. And I’m not going to cite the citations. I’m worn out from citing the Calvin Institutes on this. The idea that people can lose their election is not inconsistent with Reformed Theology at all.

This Calvinist approach can also be split up into two groups. What some prefer to call immutable justification and mutable justification. The former believe that three groups are predetermined: the non-elect, the temporary elect, and those who persevere. The latter holds to the idea that people can actually determine their final faith if they persevere by remaining faithful to the New Covenant. What does that entail? For all practical purposes, remaining faithful to a local expression of the institutional church–show up, tithe, and make life easy for the elders. This is the Galatian problem all over again because their justification is progressive. They must do the right things to stay justified. But the requirements are a dumbed-down version of the law in the form of traditions of men. And I’ve talked at length about some Calvinists about this, and they say that it’s not keeping the law per se that keeps you safe, it’s being, and this would be the crowd from the mutable justification or changeable justification, the idea that if you’re faithful to the Covenant, i.e. the local church, and that you’re as faithful as you can be, you’re in. That keeps you justified.

The other immutable crowd comes from the position that it’s all predetermined. There’s absolutely nothing you can do except to work out your own salvation with trembling and fear to see if you make it in the end. And you can come to have an assurance of salvation as long as you see yourself being faithful, but you won’t know for certain whether the called temporarily illumined, or those who receive the gift of perseverance and persevere to the end, okay? And this is arguable. I’ve quoted the Calvin Institutes on this constantly. Paul warned the Galatians that if they wanted to be justified by the law, they were accountable for all of it, not the dumbed-down traditions of men versions. Now that’s Galatians 5:3. Paul goes on to say that justification is a finished work wherein there is no law. Law is now a guide for works of love and sanctification. And that’s in Galatians chapter 5:6-7.

So I got away from my main point a little bit in that let’s look at a few things here from Revelation 12. Let’s kind of go through and look at the verses, and let’s focus on the very important point that I want to make in this passage that Israel as a nation is part and parcel with redemption, the redemption plan, okay? The redemption plan that is elected by God. And we had a study on this from the book of Romans where we went into this pretty – people like to make a big dichotomy between national Israel and spiritual Israel. And the Church is now spiritual Israel and the true Jew is really one who is part of the church that has replaced Israel because it fell from its position. The Bible plainly says Israel is elect. How can they say that that was lost? Especially if you read Jeremiah 31 where it’s absolutely clear. Well, again, in Calvinism and the Reformed doctrine in general, there’s a difference between the called and those who have been granted the gift of perseverance. When you’re saved, you’re entered in to the salvation lottery. You’re entered in to the race. And the race is not for rewards. The reward is salvation.

Now let’s look then at Revelation 12:1. “And a great sign appeared in heaven. A woman clothed with the sun with the moon under her feet and on her head a crowd of 12 stars.” Though this passage uses a lot of symbolism, it is not difficult to interpret. The woman is national Israel, and this passage shows how Israel as a nation cannot be separated spiritually from soteriology. We will see this as we progress. But let me drive the point a little more with Ephesians 2:11-12. So let’s borrow from Ephesians a little bit here in our study. Verse 11, Paul says, “Therefore, remember that at one time, you Gentiles in the flesh,” okay, those once slave to the flesh before they’re saved, “called the uncircumcision by what is called the circumcision which is made in the flesh by hands,” verse 12, “Remember that you were at that time,” when they were unsaved, “You at that time were separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel.” All right, what’s a commonwealth? We’ve looked at this before in our study of Romans sometime ago. The idea of commonwealth has national connotations to it, and you were strangers to the covenants of promise. And we also looked at covenants being used in the plural there. Why is that? Because all of the covenants in the Old Testament work together to build and culminate on the one final New Covenant in the end.

And I note that in my notes here that we spent a whole lesson on making all these points and the fact that Israel as a nation, Israel’s identity as a nation cannot be separated from God’s salvation plan. And that’s why we love Israel, the nation, and that’s why we look at great interest with what’s going on in Israel today. Well, Israel is a secular nation, and remember, we’re learning more and more that secular is not always necessarily evil. The United States was founded as a secular nation. Obviously, it was a secular nation in regard to the decision that they would stay neutral in religion, that they would focus on freedom of religion but as a government, not take sides, okay? So that’s not necessarily evil for a government to say, “We’re going to rule and not take sides in regard to religions.” Well, Paul, then, what’s their standard? Well, first of all, they were ordained by God. And secondly, as we often talk about, all men born into the world have the law of God written on their hearts with their consciences, either accusing or excusing their behavior. All right? We’ve talked about this before. The Nuremberg trials, what law was used? They got to gather these nations and brought these Nazi war criminals up on charges before I guess you would call the World Court because what they did was horribly wrong. Well, says who? From what law book? Why did men all gather together and agree that really along with the rest of the world that this was absolutely horrible behavior? Where has such a law come from? Only one place. Man is created with that intuitive knowledge of good built in, part of the creation.

Okay. So verse 2, “She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains in the agony of giving birth. And another sign appeared in heaven. Behold a great red dragon with seven heads and ten horns. And on its heads, seven diadems.” Go down to verse 4. “His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth, and the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth so that when she bore her child, he might devour it.” Okay, so what’s this a picture of? This is obviously a picture of Christ coming out of Israel, the nation Israel, which gave birth to Christ. This is a woman with, what was it? 12 stars on her head, which is obviously the 12 tribes of Israel, okay? And so the dragon stood before the woman who’s about to give birth so that she bore her children that he might devour it. Well, okay, yes, this could pertain directly to – remember when Herod tried to have Christ murdered by murdering all the infants in Israel, amongst the Jews from two years old down. But I think this speaks generally to the kingdom of darkness trying to destroy Christ.

Verse 5, “She gave birth to the male child, one who is to rule all the nations with an iron rod, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne.” So what we have up until verse 5 is the introduction of national Israel, the fact that the Messiah or the Savior came out of Israel, the fact that the kingdom of darkness, Satan, tried to destroy the Christ who came into the world as a man. And notice that he will rule all of the nations with an iron rod. She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron. This is literal. This is the millennial kingdom. This is where Christ will rule on David’s throne in Jerusalem for a thousand years, and Israel as a nation will be the head of the world and not the tail. And there’s much, much information about this and the details of the millennial kingdom in the Old Testament. He wasn’t able to destroy Christ. Israel’s child was caught up to God and to his throne. That of course is the resurrection. Okay. “And the woman fled into the wilderness where she has a place prepared by God in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.”

So basically, what we have in chapter 12 is a thumbnail of all redemptive history up to the tribulation period is what we have, and really beyond with the mentioning of the millennial kingdom where Christ will rule the nations with an iron rod. Now we all look forward to heaven for many things, but this is one reason we look forward to redemption. As we study the Bible, it’s not heaven per se, I suppose. We’ll be given assignments and work to do, and I guess that will be in heaven and in the millennial kingdom. But we know that at the end of the millennial kingdom and after the white throne judgment that there is a new heaven and a new earth, and heavenly Jerusalem comes down from heaven, and that’s where God tabernacles with man on earth. Again, this kind of upsets the Gnostic applecart big time, right? You’ve got the invisible coming and dwelling with the physical. You have God coming down from heaven and dwelling with man, which of course the Exodus and everything with the tabernacle with Israel was what God wanted then, right? So basically, that finally comes about. The tabernacle represented God’s desire to dwell on earth with men.

So let’s say instead of talking about going to heaven, let’s talk about redemption. One of the things that we will look forward to enjoying is in the millennial kingdom, there will be justice, okay? This is the point here. Christ will rule from David’s throne in Jerusalem with an iron rod or a rod of iron, and things are going to be done right. There’s going to be justice. There’s going to be fairness, okay? We’re going to be able to look at that and see that happen as set against the injustice that we have to live with all the time in this world. Things are going to be done right, and that’s going to be a glory. Also, another thing that will be glorious as set against what we’re used to, and I look forward to this, Israel will no longer be the ugly stepchild of the world that everybody beats on. They’re going to be the head, the Old Testament said, they’re going to be the head of the nations and not the tail. And all of this frustrating persecution and horrible treatment and anti-semitism that we see against Israel, we’re going to be able to set that against the extreme opposite being true in the millennial kingdom. For me, that’s something to look forward to. And when I see this incessant anti-semitism that we experience in our culture and in history, I’m always encouraged and I always think, even though it makes me angry and frustrates me, the thought that comes to mind is, “The day is coming. The day is coming when all of that is going to be made right.”

Now verse 6, “And the woman fled into the wilderness where she has a place prepared by God in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.” So what Revelation 12 does here is we have the creation of Israel as a nation; we have the fact that the Messiah comes out of that nation, the fact that Satan tries to devour that child, then we have in verse 5 him going back to God and his throne. So this is up to the resurrection, and you can throw the birth of the Gentiles being grafted into Israel in there. Now we’re jumping in to verse 6 which is definitely during the tribulation period, the seven-year tribulation period. Now look, this is the only place 1,260 days fits into anything. That’s what? Three and a half years, right? Okay. There’s no place else in all of scripture to put these 1,260 days. There’s only one place these days can go, and that is the seven-year tribulation period.

What we see here is that there’s a persecution of the woman in these days, and somehow Israel is protected for that many days from being wiped out. I don’t know what happens. One day we will study the book of Revelation. For now, suffice it to say, Israel as a people is protected as a people for these many days. Now a war arose in heaven. Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fight back. This is interesting. Eight, “And he was defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven.” Now we know up until this time from other scriptures, especially in the book of Job, that Satan and his demons have access to heaven and apparently even go there and dialogue with God. I think Satan is also called the Accuser of the Brethren, and what the Hebrew writer talks about in regard to Christ being our advocate, I think this is where Christ is our advocate in heaven. Now the Reformed crowd teaches that he’s an advocate for a continued imputing of his righteousness to us to keep us justified, but I don’t think that’s the case at all. I think Christ is our advocate in sanctification because even though we’re sanctified and our justification is a done deal, we’re continually accused in heaven by the accuser of the what? The brethren.

So verse 9, “And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent who’s called the devil and Satan and the deceiver of the whole world.” I find this interesting too. The concept all through the Bible as Satan being a deceiver of the world. I just find that interesting in that this is in the mix – how should I say? If our eternal faith is predetermined, why have the kingdom of darkness being capable of deception? Why is that even in the mix? And if we’re so totally depraved, if mankind is in general totally depraved, why do we need a deceiver? So just a thought. I’m not saying that’s a big deal but just something to think about. Anyway, he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. Now this is undoubtedly in the middle of the tribulation period. During this time when Israel is protected somehow, whether supernaturally or God used his other nations to protect Israel, I don’t know. I know this for a fact. The book of Revelation is going to read like the daily newspapers during that time. In the book of Daniel, we find that during this time knowledge will increase, we read in the book of Daniel. I think what will increase is the book of Revelation is what’s going to increase. That’s the knowledge that’s going to increase. This is where all heck breaks out on earth. We have the seven-year tribulation period, and I think when Satan is cast out of heaven, I think this is where we have the great tribulation, which is the last three and a half years.

Verse 10, “And I heard a loud voice in heaven saying now salvation and the power of the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before God.” So again, this is where I believe the Hebrew writer talks about Christ being our advocate. I think this is what’s going on.

Verse 11, “And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony for they love not their lives even unto death.” Hold the fort. Wow. What translation do you have?

Susan: King James.

Okay. I believe what I have is the ESV, and I believe we’re missing something. Wow. Okay. It’s going to be in verse 6, okay? “And the woman fled into the wilderness where she has a place prepared for God and where she was nourished for 1,260 days.” Is there any more to that verse?

Susan: No. And it’s “prepared by God,” not “prepared for God.”

Okay. Somewhere in there, I’m not finding it, when there’s a – he puts out a flood to try to destroy the woman. But anyway, when he can’t destroy the woman, he wages war against her offspring.

Susan: That’s in verse 15, 13, 14, and 15.

Oh, okay. We’re not there yet. Okay. So anyway, “And they conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they loved not their lives unto death. Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell on them, but woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath because he knows that his time is short.” So the heavens will rejoice that he’s finally been cast out, but woe unto the earth because this is when this great wrath comes.

All right, 13. “When the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child.” Now who is that?

Susan: Israel.

That’s Israel, the Jews. Verse 14, “But the woman was given the two wings of a great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness to a place where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time,” and again, that’s the three and a half years. So you can kind of coincide this with what Christ said in Matthew 24, I believe, when he said, “When you see the abomination of,” or the…

Susan: Abomination of desolation.

Yeah, abomination of decimation [SOUNDS LIKE] or whatever it was, where Satan goes into the temple and sits there and proclaims himself, he says, “Flee.” He says, “Don’t even go back to the house to get anything. Flee.” So apparently, this happens suddenly. And I don’t know what all happens there, but wherever they flee to or whatever they do, they’re protected for these three and a half years. “So the serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman.” And I believe people during that time are going to be able to read in the book of Revelation and know exactly what that’s talking about. I don’t know what that symbolizes, but they’re going to know then what it symbolizes. “So the serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman to sweep her away with a flood. But the earth came to help the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from its mouth.” Again, we don’t know what that’s going to symbolize. It may be some kind of supernatural event or it may be something else.

Verse 17, “Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring on those who keep the commandment of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.” And what I think that is referring to, the dragon can’t destroy Israel, so then he goes after her offspring. Who do I think that is? I think that’s the Gentiles, okay?

Susan: The believing Gentiles.

The believing Gentiles who are alive during the tribulation period. He can’t destroy Israel. Somehow Israel is protected for three and a half years. Satan knows his time is short. He can read the Bible too and know what’s going to happen. So basically, here is where you, I believe, get this great slaughter and persecution of Christians during the tribulation period. Apparently, that’s going to be mostly Gentiles. I do believe the offspring spoken of here is the Gentiles because they came out of Israel. Again, I want to make the point here that Israel as a nation is very relevant to God’s redemptive plan, and we got to keep that in mind. Any questions or comments?

Susan: It’s obvious from what is written in Revelation that this is a national Israel and not a spiritual Israel that we’re talking about here.

Right. And that’s my point. I think we make a big mistake in scripture when we try to make this huge dichotomy between spiritual Israel, whatever that is, and national Israel. And that’s why as Christians, we don’t look at Israel as just a “sliver of geography” that people use to eclipse the glory of Christ. And do you know how many Reformed people have said this to me and the dispensational people in general that you’re accused of making a plot of land more relevant than Christ himself, you know? So again, there’s this dichotomy. When it gets right down to the nitty-gritty, their real problem is that we’re talking about material land. And if it’s material land, it can’t have relevance because it’s evil, because it’s material. So yeah…

Susan: Nowhere in the scripture was the material land promised to Abraham given then to David ever described as being evil. It was Promised Land, a land of covenant, a land of promise, a land of hope. Now did evil happen there? Yes. There were evil rulers, et cetera. We all know the history of the nation of Israel. But all throughout scripture, there’s always that connotation that it is a land significant to God, not evil, significant, blessed and important to God for redemptive purposes and for his elect. And how much more we as believing Christians need to bless the land of Israel?

Right. Absolutely. So any other comments? All right, well, we’ll wrap that up for tonight, and hopefully that will be useful for some folks.


PAUL:  So we’re going to look at Revelation 12 again, and the reason we are is because Israel, of course, is in the news, and we all know that, and we’ve all been following that. But what is prompting me to look at Israel on the Bible, particularly at Revelation 12 is when Israel is in the news like this, the anti-semitism just comes out of the woodwork. It’s crazy, especially among professing Christians. I was on a back on forth on Facebook till two o’clock in the morning about this. And granted, it’s primarily the Reformed crowd, their unabashed anti-semitism is just over the top. And of course what we’re saying is – the reason we’re saying this is because we’re in an era right now in the American Church that is the return to the hardcore Protestant doctrine and gospel. I mean, this is a return to the authentic article, and that is where this anti-semitism comes from, or replacement theology, this whole idea that Israel fell from grace and has been replaced by the Gentile church, which is exactly what the Apostle Paul warned against in Romans 11, very sternly warned about “boasting against the branches,” so to speak. Okay?

So let’s look again at Revelation 12. The reason, and I really want to get to the crux to what the book of Revelation is about. What is the book of Revelation about? We’re going to look at that. What is the major theme of Revelation? Is the major theme of Revelation about the gospel and of sorts? Yes. Is it about the cross? No, it’s not about the cross. It’s not about that at all. Well, to some degree, of course, it is. It speaks of a Lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world. It does talk about that, but every verse is not about that. What’s it about? And we’re going to look at chapter 12 again from a different angle. Verse 1 of chapter 12 says, and keep in mind that what’s awesome about this chapter in the book of Revelation is that it really is a thumbnail sketch of all human history in this one chapter. All right?

Chapter 12:1, “And a great a sign appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of 12 stars,” which I’ll go ahead and say the 12 tribes of Israel. That’s verse 1. Now that symbolizes clearly Israel. And what we talked about last week to some degree is the fact that you can’t separate the identity of Israel as a nation from the gospel, from God’s plan of salvation, you can’t separate the fact that – or Israel’s identity as a nation. Why is this important? Well, we’re going to back to Exodus 19. We’re going to go back to chapter 19 of Exodus. God leads Israel out of Egypt. This is prior to the promise, singular, the promise, God’s promise to Abraham, the Abrahamic Covenant. What was that? The Abrahamic Covenant is what all of our salvation is based on. It’s the promise to Abraham that all of the nations would be blessed through him and his seed, basically what Christ said in the New Testament, salvation is of the Jews. So God has this promise with Abraham that he will make them a great nation, and through that nation all the nations of the world would be blessed. And what else did God say? Those who curse you will be cursed, and those who bless you will be blessed. Yes, I believe capitalist ideology is a good reason why America is blessed practically. I also believe that America has been blessed to a great degree because of its support of Israel. But anyway, God brings the Israelites out, leads them to Mount Sinai, calls Moses up to Mount Sinai, and we need to go to Exodus 19. Let’s start in verse – no, we can start at 2. “They set out from Rephidim…”

SUSAN:  Rephidim, yeah.

PAUL:  Yeah, Rephidim, “and came into the wilderness of Sinai and they encamped in the wilderness. There Israel encamped before the mountain while Moses went up to God. The Lord called to him out in the mountain saying, ‘Thus, you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the people of Israel: You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself.'” Stop right there. What’s it mean, he bore Israel up on eagles’ wings? Well, we like to use that verse in our day of passive Christianity. The Lord bears me up on the wings of an eagle. I do nothing. I’m weak and pathetic. Praise God. He bears me up on the wings of an eagle. What’s that really mean? What that really means is this, is that eagles train their chicklets to fly by bearing them up on their wings flying way, way high up and tossing them out to freefall. Then they will dive and follow the little chicklets that’s falling to its death and bear them up on their wing right before they hit the ground. And they do that over and over and over again. Okay?

God was saying that he was using the Exodus to train the Israelites to be his people to do his work. He was using life to train them up for that, to be a holy priesthood before him and to be his beacon to all the other nations. So here’s what God says. “Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine. And you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.” And Andy taught us during the conference what holy means, or sanctified. It means not ordinary. It means unordinary. It means not the run of the mill. They were to be unique before the nations. These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel. So to Israel’s credit and the one thing that you want to notice here is God’s not commanding Israel that you will have a covenant to me. Basically, he sends Moses back down to see if they’re in agreement. It’s their choice. And to the Israelites’ credit, they went ahead and agreed to it before they even knew what was going to be in this covenant or what ends up being the Book of the Law. But take note of that. God gives Israel a choice as to whether they enter this covenant with him or not. And they agree. And we studied this at the Messianic Church I had an opportunity to teach Exodus from. I traced and documented all the ups and downs of Moses going up the mountain to talk to God. God said, “Go down and tell them this. See what they say.” The Israelites agreed to it. Moses goes back up, tells God, God says, “Okay, they agree to that, then here’s where we go from here.” And this is – I forget how many ups and downs. There was like, what? Twenty of them or something? I’ve got a chart that has chapter and verse and all of the comings and goings and what it was for. Then what we have is the Israelites agreed to this covenant. God says, “Okay, go back down. Tell the people to sanctify themselves. Do this, that, and the other for I think three days. And then all come to consummate this covenant.” Okay?

And this is basically what we have a picture of in Exodus, is God coming down from heaven to meet with Israel, with Moses being the mediator, and basically, you have this cosmic coming of the king to make this covenant with Israel with all of the hosts of heaven surrounding the mountain because obviously the forces of darkness are going to try to intervene. This is very apocalyptic beyond imagination. The Israelites cowered in fear at the foot of the mountain. There was lightning. There was thunder. We know that there were angels all around. Now stop right there. What’s with, and of course we know that God had them build this tabernacle that they carried around with them in the desert. We also learned at our study at the Messianic Church that that tabernacle represented God’s desire to dwell on earth with Israel, his holy people. That’s what the tabernacle, God wanted to dwell or tabernacle with his people on earth. We find that in the New Testament, in Galatians, in this tabernacle we have all kinds of imagery of angels. So in a day and age where everything is about the cross, the cross this, the cross that, the gospel that, the gospel the other, you look at how they were supposed to build the tabernacle and that’s like what’s with all of the symbolism of the angels? They’re even the ones…

SUSAN:  On the Ark of the Covenant.

PAUL:  On the Ark of the Covenant overlooking the Ark of the Covenant. Wait a minute. Doesn’t that eclipse the sun? Aren’t we making more of the angels than the sun, on and on and on and on ad nauseam? Well, what’s this with all of the angels? The New Testament tells us that the angels are the enforcers of the covenant. They’re the enforcers of the covenant. Now Israel fails in this covenant. Israel fails in this covenant. So this is what the book of Revelation is about. God comes in the book of Revelation to enforce the covenant with his angels. We’ll look at some of these verses in the book of Revelation. But this is what the book of Revelation is about. Okay? God says, “You messed up my covenant. But you know what? Israel is my elect nation. You agree to enter this covenant with me. I honored your decision to do so. But you know what? I’m sealing that decision. As a nation, you’re mine now.” So what we see on the election of Israel is that God seals their choice, and basically, he turns their failings for their good and for the good of others. For instance, what do we find in chapters 9 through 11 of Romans? Clearly, he used their rebellion to what? Save the Gentiles, right? You can read all about that in Romans 9 through 11. Their failure and their rejection of God and the Messiah turned into God then saying, “Okay, invite everyone else into the covenant,” namely the Gentiles.

So this covenant was broken, the Covenant of the Law. So what does God do? He makes a new covenant, Jeremiah 31. But that covenant is to Israel. So what he does then, he takes the old covenant that they broke, and now the breaking of that covenant and its elements is defined as sin. And all sins committed against that covenant that he will later build on, you know, in the Bible and scripture, all violations of that covenant are sin or sin and are imputed to the old what is called the old covenant. So now what he does, he takes the law that they broke and makes that a covenant that imprisons all sin. Galatians, okay? All sins held captive in the old. So when God makes this new covenant with Israel, Christ goes to the cross and he ends the law. That is the Old Testament law. So those who don’t believe in Christ, those who don’t believe in Christ are under the law. What law? The Old Testament law. They are under that law. But when they become believers in Jesus Christ, them as a person, end their sin and that law is cast as far as the east is from the west. Because Christ didn’t come to cover our sin. He came to end our sin, okay? If Christ came to cover our sin, well then, Christians continue to need the cross, right? Every day. We must live by the gospel. Okay?

SUSAN:  Question. Is this where they come to the one judgment where the books are open and all will be revealed? Isn’t that life uncovering your sin in the judgment seat?

PAUL:  No. Those books encompass every thought they thought and every – and the judgment is according to works. We know that. It’s according to works.

SUSAN:  Good works and bad works.

PAUL:  Right. And that, by the way, that is another word I got to add to my chart. Remind me of that.

SUSAN:  Okay.

PAUL:  Books.

SUSAN:  Books.

PAUL:  Okay? Books.

SUSAN:  But see, this is what I was thinking, you know…

PAUL:  Works.

SUSAN:  God says as far as the east is from the west, so far I remove your transgressions from you. But we’re taught in our churches that our sins are covered by the blood of the Lamb and all this. Well, a covering is something – if something is covered, it can be uncovered and revealed.

PAUL:  Uh-hmm. And that’s what Calvin said every time a Christian sins, his sin is not covered anymore. So you’ve got to go back to the cross…

SUSAN:  To the cross and get saved all over again.

PAUL:  …to get rejustified, okay?

SUSAN:  Okay.

PAUL:  So basically, God turns the broken old covenant into something good of this, something that all of our sins are imputed to so when we become Christ who died on the cross to end that law, so when we become Christians, we are no longer under the law. Well, Paul, what about the Bible? That’s the same law. That it is, but it’s a different law now. To the believer, it’s a different law. What law, Paul? Romans 8:2, both words in there for law where the Apostle Paul makes the distinction. Both words are nomos, which means written law. And basically, now the Bible is what is called the Law of Liberty, the Law of the Spirit of Life, Romans 8:2. Basically, here’s how this works. Before you’re a Christian, you’re under the law. Every sin you commit is being recorded and imputed to that law. So when you become a believer, what the Bible calls the Law of Sin and Death, because as you were under that law as an unbeliever, you are working and earning fruits for death. Please remind me that word to the list as well–fruits. Books, fruits, okay? Because in regard to justification, fruits are fruits for life that you’re earning. Under law, it’s fruits for death. So under the law of sin and death, you’re working towards a wage of death. But when you give your life to Christ, all that’s canceled. The law that would judge you, the last judgment is eradicated. Paul said where there is no law, there is no sin. Am I perfect as a Christian? That’s another word we need to add to the list–perfection.

SUSAN:  It means [UNINTELLIGIBLE 0:24:40].

PAUL:  Okay? So under sanctification, perfection is the goal. Under justification, we’re absolutely perfect. How could that be, Paul? Because there’s no law to judge us. And even if there was, we’re dead. Or switch that. I’ve said this before; I’ll say it again. We’re dead but even if they go to exhume our body and drag us into the court, the judge has no law to condemn us with. That’s good news. That’s what the gospel is, good news. But once you’ve given your life to Christ, that part of it is done, and now we move on. Hebrews 6, what are we leaving behind and moving on to maturity? What’s that, Paul? Same law, except it’s the law of liberty and it’s the law of the life of the spirit, and it’s the law of love. Now our focus is not justification. That’s no longer on our radar screen. The banner over us now is love. Now the way the Bible also states this is before you became a Christian, one violation of this law, and I truly believe that this isn’t a reality per se, but it was spoken this way to make a point. Before you were a Christian, every time you violated one of the commandments of the old covenant, you were in violation of the whole covenant, James 2:10. But as a Christian, every time you obey an act of the law, the spirit of life or the law of liberty, every time you obey or do an act of love, you fulfill the whole law. Okay?

SUSAN:  Does that mean that or part of that meaning is if you are capable of not keeping one law, you’re not capable of keeping any of it?

PAUL:  You can put it that way.

SUSAN:  But then under sanctification, if you are able, if you are capable of keeping one part of the law of God, then you are also enabled to fulfill it all, to keep it all. You have the ability to…

PAUL:  Exactly. But we’re weak because of the flesh. Good point.

SUSAN:  We’re weak but enabled. We always like to stress the word “enablement.” We are able because of the Holy Spirit. We are able to do more than what we think we can.

PAUL:  Right. Now, and I think scripturally, this is in a manner of speaking to make a point on this. So can lost people do good works? Well, sure, they can. They have the law of God written on their hearts, and they’re created with consciences. And people who don’t know the Lord are happier if they obey their consciences and they do what John Immel talked about in the conference. He said, “If you want to be happy, go accomplish something.” And a lot of times, even for unbelievers, that means going against your feelings for the joy that’s set ahead. You’re sacrificing what you want to do in the here and now, making a little sacrifice to pave the way for a sense of accomplishment down the road. Look, O.B. Moyer [SOUNDS LIKE], I think O.B. Moyer was his name. John Adams was an apprentice under him in the summer of 1966, I believe. The guy who was not a Christian went into – cleared out psych wards in Illinois one ride after another just by going in in mental institutions, practically cleared them out just by going and teaching people, whether they were Christians or not, to live by their consciences.

SUSAN:  This is in regard to [UNINTELLIGIBLE 0:29:50].

PAUL:  Right, right. So this works for, yes, unbelievers can do good. It does justify them. It doesn’t get rid of the law problem for them. But yeah, and here is the confusion that we have in today’s Christianity. There’s this antinomian spirit where obedience is important. The law of liberty is confused with the law of sin and death because sanctification and justification are fused together. So in essence, what you have is in many cases unbelievers living any more righteous life than antinomian-professing Christians, Penn State versus SGM, Sovereign Grace Ministries, you know. Look at how Penn State handled the problem. Look how SGM – this is why. But man, even good men, need to deal with this law problem. And Christ takes care of that. So hey, I just gave you a thumbnail of the covenants, old and new. Okay?

So what is the book of Revelation about? The book of Revelation is about God sending his angels to enforce this covenant. That’s what the book of Revelation is about. Israel makes a covenant with hell. Politically, Israel makes – and this is in the book of Daniel. They make a covenant with who ends up being the Anti-Christ, and Isaiah says, “You have made a covenant with hell, but that covenant will not stand.” Why? Because that’s the book of Revelation. God sends his angels to enforce this covenant. All hell breaks loose on earth starting with the six seals. And of course the Anti-Christ is involved in all this drama. And Israel begins to say – well, let me see here. What happens during the Tribulation period is a learning [SOUNDS LIKE 0:32:42] for Israel. The book of Daniel says that the knowledge of the book of Revelation will increase. During that time, the events going on in the world will come right off the pages of the book of Revelation and people will say this saying, “Oh my goodness.” And may I put it in this context? Oh, every verse in the book of Revelation isn’t about the cross if this is going on right now, if this is going on right now. So what happens is that there is this mass conversions in the end when Christ appears, and Israel looks upon the one that they have pierced and they repent. So basically, that’s why you’ve got all of the apocalyptic activity in the book of Revelation through angels. The book of Revelation is about the angels of God coming to enforce the covenant that Christ initially tried to make with Israel on Mount Sinai. And God says, “No, no. You’re not going to make a covenant with Death. I have a covenant with you. You’re my elect. I’m coming for you. And in the midst of the fray, whatever Israelites choose to cry out to me will be saved.” Okay?

SUSAN:  And in essence in chapter 12, the war is in heaven and on earth. In verse 7 it says there was war in heaven.

PAUL:  How about that?

SUSAN:  As well as the war on earth with the political upheaval with the nations of the world because Israel flees to a place where God is protecting her, but then there was war in heaven, and Michael and his angels fought against Satan and his angels.

PAUL:  And when Satan is cast out to heaven, that’s when he enters the Anti-Christ, and the Anti-Christ goes into the temple in Jerusalem and proclaims himself God as prophesied by Christ and the prophet Daniel.


PAUL:  Now a lot of people use the scripture in Hebrews about Christ being our present advocate in heaven as “See? See? See? We still need justification. Christ is in heaven and he’s our advocate.” No. That advocacy, I believe, concerns the fact that Satan presently has access to heaven and accuses us before God day and night. That’s where Christ’s advocacy comes up. Okay? And by the way, there’s a beautiful picture of this in lamentations, I believe, where I can find you the – where I forget the name of the prophet. I’ll have to dig that up.

All right. Before we move on in this chapter, if you go to Romans 9, the Apostle Paul says the following: “I am speaking the truth in Christ,” verse 1. “I am not lying. My conscience bears witness to the Holy Spirit.” The Apostle Paul told Timothy to always keep a clear conscience before God. Christians are to utilize conscience in their sanctification. What we’re taught in our day by many is every time you feel guilty, you get in the Bible and you remind yourself that Christ died for your sins. Every time you feel guilty about something, you go back to the cross. No. You keep a clear conscience before God by preventing a defiled conscience by then God. Christians are to utilize this just as much as unbelievers are too. We should be better at it than they are. So, “That I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart, for I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsman, according to the flesh.” Now who are we talking about? Kinsman according to the flesh. That’s national identity, right? Now watch this, verse 4, “They are Israelites and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises,” plural, okay? There’s the one big promise and then all the other promises built on the one promise and are elements of the one promise, the Abrahamic Covenant. To then belong to patriarchs and,” from their what? Grace. Okay? According to the flesh. So we’ve got my kinsmen, the Israelites, according to race and according to flesh. This is nationality. It’s the Christ who is God overall blessed forever amen. You cannot separate Israel’s nationality from the plan of salvation. Encompassed in that is the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the law, the worship, the promises, the patriarchs, the heritage. Any questions? This is why as Christians, we love Israel. Okay?

SUSAN:  Absolutely.

PAUL:  All right? So we got that part. Now another part that I wanted to point you out to, hopefully I can find it here real quick, Revelation – you can find it on your own. Hold on just a second here.

SUSAN:  And talking about the angels around with him.

PAUL:  Yeah. Okay. Somewhere after a trumpet blows or something like that, there’s all kinds of smoke, and John sees the tabernacle coming out of the temple in all this smoke and stuff, all of this goes back to Mount Sinai. This is the enforcement of the covenant. Now let’s go back to chapter 12 of the book of Revelation to kind of finish this up as we glide through the verses. “Now we saw a great sign appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of 12 stars,” that’s national Israel. Okay? That verse 1 encompasses really the Abrahamic promise and national Israel.

Two, “She,” that is Israel, “was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth.” Who was Israel giving birth to? “Out of Israel comes the Messiah.” This is Jesus Christ. “And another sign appeared in heaven. Behold, a great red dragon with seven heads and ten horns,” and we’re not going to get into the political aspects of that. But I will say this. If you’re one of those dumb hillbillies that says, “Oh no, one thing we don’t discuss in this house is religion and politics,” you’re a moron and you’re head is in the sand. There is no separation of the religious and the political. History should tell us this. But we’re not going to get into that. We already waxed long, so we’re not going to get in that.

“And on his head seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast in the earth.” I will say this. The word for crown there or diadem is the only place in scripture that this is used. All of the other uses of the word “crown” in the New Testament have to do with reward, which is interesting and I won’t get into now. It’s a riff [SOUNDS LIKE]. All right? Let me tell you something else that’s interesting about this use of the word “diadem.” There’s many different crowns in human history. But isn’t it interesting that this particular crown is unique to the Middle East, okay? Because it’s the head-wrapping crown of cloth with like some nice stones in the front or something. Unlike the big metal gold crowns that are [UNINTELLIGIBLE 0:44:18] with Western culture, okay? This is a crown. We have seven diadems. And these are crowns that are unique to the Middle East, just saying, you know. What am saying? I’m not saying anything. Just thought that I might point that out. All the other crowns in the Bible are wreaths that were given as rewards usually in sports. Okay? Usually in sports.

Okay. “So his tail swept a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to earth.” This is the rebellion. This is the backdrop of human history in this rebellion of Satan that took place in heaven. Now, Paul, prove it. Look in the world, good and evil. Okay? Are you telling me you can’t see the works of darkness and of Satan in the world? Turn on the news any given morning, or any given hour. Those acts are not created in a vacuum. Okay?

Anyway, “And the dragon stood before the woman.” Okay, you got that? The woman stood before Israel who is about to give birth so that when she bore her child, he might devour it. So why would Satan want to devour Christ? Because the Bible tells us Satan has his time shorter. He is the kingdom and the ruler of this world. He flat out wants to take everyone with him that he can take. Period. Christ said that he did not create hell for the man, but the devil and his angels. Well, Paul, I don’t believe that there’s a hell. Well, you shouldn’t believe there was a hell. It wasn’t created for you. But you’ve got a choice in your life. Who are you going to follow? Are you going to follow Christ or are you going to follow the ruler of this world? So there’s this rebellion. The elect angels and people were seeing this more and more. There’s the elect angels, but there are these fallen angels that were never given a chance for redemption. So this was an obvious choice between angels. But the angels that chose not to rebel, to stay true to God are his what? Elect angels. So people who choose properly are elected for a purpose. They’re sealed for a purpose.

Listen. There was one rebellion, right? There was one rebellion, right? By election, God says the angels that chose to stay faithful to me are now sealed. This is the one thing we know, that the remaining two-thirds of the angels that stayed true to God will never rebel. Why?

SUSAN:  They’re sealed.

PAUL:  They’re sealed. They’re elected for a purpose. They’re elected for a purpose. Does that mean they never had a choice? No, it absolutely does not mean that they never had a choice. Okay? God did not create evil or the rebellion, or God did not create sin. The book of Isaiah says, “Sin was found in Lucifer,” the angel that loved the rebellion and who at one time was really kind of the Michael the Archangel.


PAUL:  Right. Sin was found in him. How did it get there? Of course, we don’t know. Okay? Now she gave birth to a male child, that’s Christ, one who is to rule us and one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron from David’s throne in Jerusalem. Okay. God never wanted Israel to have a king. When the Israelites came to God through, who was it? Samuel?

SUSAN:  Samuel [UNINTELLIGIBLE 0:49:15] David, yeah.

PAUL:  Right. They wanted a king. God went to Samuel and said, “Samuel, don’t worry. They’re not rejecting you. They’re rejecting me. Now you go tell them if they want a king, I’ll give them a king. But here’s what’s going to happen. God, the capitalist, said the guy is going to tax the bejeebers out of you. He’s going to put you into servitude. So he’s going to take all of your money and spend it on his splendor.” And that’s exactly what happened.

SUSAN:  Force you into work.

PAUL:  But what did God do? God then said, “Okay, I’m going to use the king thing. It was a bad idea, but man has a choice, but I’m going to turn it into good.” So what did God then use to turn it into good? It’s called the Davidic Covenant. All of these covenants build and are elements of the one covenant. So he’s going to rule the nations with a rod iron. But her child was caught up to God into his throne. What’s that? The resurrection, Christ is resurrected and sits on God’s throne in heaven. And now here’s what the scriptures did. In the next verse, verse 6, we jump right to the Tribulation period. Up until verse 5 we have the creation of Israel as a nation and the Abrahamic Covenant all the way up to Christ’s resurrection. And then boom. Verse 6 is about the Tribulation period. Okay?

Now this is what anti-semitism is all about. You ready? Everybody ready? Here is what anti-semitism is about part and parcel. Christ is taken up to heaven since with God in heaven. Satan can no longer destroy the Christ. What’s the next best thing?

SUSAN:  God’s elect people.

PAUL:  His elect people.

SUSAN:  Israel.

PAUL:  Okay. Now when it all hits the fan, and I’m telling you, when I’m fighting this anti-semitism stuff on Facebook and everywhere else, what’s behind it? Satan is behind it. Okay? All of you good Calvinists out there that think that you are the epitome of following God in his holiness, you are sadly mistaken. You are satanic, anti-semitic fools, is what you are. Prove it. I just did. I build on this. All right?

Verse 6, we now hit the Tribulation period, “And the woman,” that’s Israel, “fled into the wilderness where she has a place prepared by God in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.” There’s only one place you can put that year and a half. There’s only one place you can put there. Search all the philosophy books. Search anywhere you want to search. There’s only one place on all the earth and a book that states the purpose for 1,260 days. And that is the one and a half years of – I’m sorry, not one and a half, three and a half. I correct myself. That’s the three and a half years of the seven-year Tribulation period. That’s the only place where this goes. Israel as a country is protected for three and a half years. Verse seven, “Now war arose in heaven. Michael and his angels,” no. So verse 6 not only pertains particularly to the Tribulation period, but it also is historical. Historically, since Satan can no longer attack Christ head on here on earth, he goes after the next best thing–Israel. That’s what all this anti – and you can get into the fringe elements of national Israel like some in the Zionist movement. During the 1st century, I think the Maccabees were pretty radical, da da da da. You can point to all of that. Basically, to accuse Israel as a whole of being of that spirit, of course, is part and parcel with the satanic attack as a whole. Okay? So basically, this woman is protected for 1,260 days. Well, Paul, how do you think that happens? I have no idea. But somehow, someway, Israel is protected for three and a half years during the Tribulation period.

“Now war arose in heaven. Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world.” Now man’s sin in and of itself is not enough to set the whole world on fire. Man needs help, and he gets it from the king of darkness. “He was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. And I heard a loud voice in heaven saying, ‘Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God,'” watch, the kingdom of our God, ‘”and the authority of his Christ have come.'” It’s not here right now. We’re ambassadors, okay? If God’s kingdom was here on earth right now, we wouldn’t be called ambassadors. That’s stupid. Ambassadors don’t work in their own country. God’s kingdom is not on earth right now. It’s in heaven. No. No, Martin Luther. No, John Calvin. No, Augustine. No, Al Mohler. No, Mark Dever, and anybody else you want to name, Paul Washer, no. The Church’s job is not to take over the whole earth for Christ because his kingdom is on earth. No, no, no, no, no. God’s kingdom is yet in heaven. Okay?

So his kingdom has come for the accuser of the brethren has been thrown down who accuses him day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb. Now verse 11 switches now from this war in heaven to the war on earth. “And they have conquered him, they or on earth, him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony for they love not their lives even unto death. Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them, but woe to you, O earth and the sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath because he knows that his time is short. And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to earth, he pursued the woman…”

SUSAN:  Persecute.

PAUL:  Pursuit I have.

SUSAN:  I have persecute.

PAUL:  Okay. “The woman who had given birth to the male child.” So who is he pursuing?

SUSAN:  Israel.

PAUL:  Okay. Why? Because he can no longer get to Christ. So he couldn’t destroy Christ on earth. He’s been harassing Christ…

SUSAN:  In heaven.

PAUL:  …in heaven for years and years and years by this hammering God’s brethren and sisthren [SOUNDS LIKE] or whatever, okay? “But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle,” definitive, the great eagle. Some people say that’s the United States. It might be. But please, put it in neon lights that I’m not saying that. The point here is that somehow during this time, Israel is protected. So she was given the wings of a great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness to the place where she is to be nourished for a time and times and half a time, three and a half years. “The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman to sweep her away with a flood. But the earth came to the help of the woman and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth.” Now we have no idea what this means, but people living during the Tribulation period saying this happened before the rise and reading this will know exactly what that means. They’re going to be seeing the unfolding of it with their own eyes. Now stop right there.

Verse 17, “Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring.” Who’s that?

SUSAN:  The saved Gentiles.

PAUL:  Very good, very good. Romans 11. Look, Satan couldn’t destroy Christ. So he set out to persecute the next best thing–Israel. And that’s anti-semitism in a nutshell. Period. Anti-semitism is satanic. Okay? Period. Simple. If you’re a professing Christian and you have a problem with Israel, very well, but you tread on dangerous ground.

SUSAN:  Very dangerous.

PAUL:  Okay? Because Paul said, “Beware. If God didn’t spare the natural branches, how much more will he not spare the unnatural branches?” Watch it, pal. God held his elect nation accountable. He’ll sure hold your sorry Gentile butt accountable, okay? So yes, the offspring is the Gentiles. So during the Tribulation period, we have an absolute massive slaughter of Gentile Christian believers. Satan couldn’t. His time is short. And again he’s going to take everybody with him that he can take with him. So he couldn’t get Christ, so he’s gone after the Jews, the Holocaust, the constant harassing of the Jews throughout the ages. Then in the Tribulation period he can’t get Israel, so then he goes after her offspring. And this is the slaughter of Gentile believers during the Tribulation period. But we read in the book of Mark and Matthew Christ said, Matthew 24, “When you see all these things happen,” he said, “flee from town to town. Because if you keep fleeing and hiding, before they catch you, I’ll be back.” Now that’s not going to be true to everybody, but it’s a game plan for that time for people that have persecuted. So he goes out to declare war on the offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testament of Jesus, and he stood on the sand and the sea. End of message. Does that have any relevance for what is happening today on the news? Now, however, I forgot my close. So let me close with this verse. This is the gospel. This brings it all together, okay? If I can find it.

SUSAN:  Summarize it.

PAUL:  Well, I should have marked it. But basically, there’s an announcement in heaven where the kingdoms of men is given to the kingdom of God, and it says God has come to tabernacle with men. It’s just a parallel verse to the tabernacle in the book of Exodus. Basically, it’s a cry now of the angels and a celebration of the fact that the kingdoms of men have been given over to the kingdom of God and God will tabernacle with man. But I wanted to find that verse because it ties right in to Exodus. Perhaps somebody will comment and cite the verse. But we can bring the point completely home with this. Chapter 21:1, “Then I saw a new heaven and new earth. For the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold…'” are you ready? Here it is. “‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man.'” Okay?

Verse 3, chapter 21, “I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,” and it’s interesting. It’s a loud voice from the throne itself. “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man.” Okay? What God wanted to do from the beginning. “He will dwell with them, and they will be his people. And God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Okay? “And he who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’ Also he said, ‘Write these down for these words are trustworthy and true.'” Now people have a choice to make. Is that verse right, or is it wrong? Your whole existence counts on it. That’s either true or it’s false. “And he said to me, ‘It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty, I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment.'” Okay?

Now this is the gospel. This is the good news. God himself vacates heaven and comes down to dwell with men on earth. God is not this higher than the heavens, infinite being that is so far above us that we’re just forever pitiful and nothing but worms crawling on the earth. This is a god who moves from his home to move in with us. This is the god who seeks us. This is the god who seeks us and corners us and calls us. Okay? And that’s why the Hebrew writer said, beseeched the people that he wrote to, “Do not neglect so great a salvation”. We can’t neglect something that’s not for you. In regard to election or predestination, you either have it or you don’t. You know what? Everybody has it. And I haven’t solidified this yet and confirmed it, and I can’t drive a stake there yet because I haven’t done enough research. But what appear that the books opened up, that the great white throne judgment which Christians will not attend, okay? We won’t be there, period, okay? And write that down another word, “judgment.” Sanctification is rewards. I may already have it down there. The other judgment is condemnation. But we won’t be at the other one, okay? The books that are opened up in the great white throne judgment and everybody standing there will be condemned. One of those books is clearly what is called the Book of Life. And after the works are examined, God will say, “Check to make sure that their names or his name, her name is not in the Book of Life.” Now here’s the shame of it is that the preliminary things that I read indicates that everybody born into the world is written in the Book of Life. But when they don’t choose Christ before their death, they’re blotted out of the book.

What we’re saying, you know, this is a book that they were in and that God wanted to leave them in. What we’re saying is the more we study is a God who does everything but the kitchen sink to get us into heaven. Okay? So with that, I close. I don’t know how long that was but anyway, longer than I thought it would be. Thanks for your attention.

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