Dealing With Heresies And Heretics In The Church

(All Bible quotations, except otherwise stated, are from the American King James Version).

The word translated as “heresy” in the New Testament comes from the Greek word “αἵρεσις”, which means a self-chosen opinion. The word is also used to refer to the sects holding such opinions. Heresies have thus come to be understood as doctrines and practices that deviate significantly from established orthodoxy (accepted mainstream beliefs). But a problem arises in defining orthodoxy or the gold standard for Christian doctrine and conduct, deviations from which would constitute heresy. This is because every denomination considers its doctrines and beliefs to be orthodox, and views all other groups who hold a contrary or divergent view as heretical. What then constitutes biblical heresy? What is the gold standard against which all doctrines and beliefs must be judged to determine their orthodoxy or otherwise?

From the apostolic point of view, heresy is viewed as any doctrine, belief or practice in the church that deviates significantly from the original apostolic faith. The faith delivered once and for all to the saints, by the original apostles of the Lord, constitutes the gold standard against which all doctrines and beliefs must be judged. From the doctrine of the Godhead, the incarnation, salvation by faith in Christ Jesus, a sanctified and godly walk in Christ for the saved, to the resurrection and the final judgement, there is a complete body of faith handed down to us by the original apostles of the Lord, which is documented in the New Testament. This original apostolic faith constitutes the blueprint for Christianity. Any deviation from this blueprint on the essential matters of the faith constitutes heresy. Heretical deviations from the Apostolic doctrines are a manifestation of the works of the flesh, concocted by false teachers destitute of the Spirit of God. Divisions in the church (heresies) are the works of demon-inspired ungodly men trying to supplant the revelations and teachings of the Holy Spirit with man-made traditions. That’s essentially what heresies are—man-made traditions inspired by demons that replace the Spirit-inspired apostolic teachings.

1 Corinthians 11:17 Now in this that I declare to you I praise you not, that you come together not for the better, but for the worse.

1 Corinthians 11:18 For first of all, when you come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.

1 Corinthians 11:19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.

Galatians 5:19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,

Galatians 5:20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, jealousies, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

Galatians 5:21 Contentions, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

2 Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privately shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.

2 Peter 2:2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.

2 Peter 2:3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingers not, and their damnation slumbers not.

Jude 1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write to you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write to you, and exhort you that you should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered to the saints.

Jude 1:4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

Jude 1:5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though you once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not.

Jude 1:6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness to the judgment of the great day.

Jude 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.

Jude 1:8 Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.

Jude 1:9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke you.

Jude 1:10 But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves.

Jude 1:11 Woe to them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.

Jude 1:12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit wither, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;

Jude 1:13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.

Jude 1:14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his saints,

Jude 1:15 To execute judgment on all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.

Jude 1:16 These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaks great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.

Jude 1:17 But, beloved, remember you the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;

Jude 1:18 How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.

Jude 1:19 These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.

The Acts 20:27 For I have not shunned to declare to you all the counsel of God.

The Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore to yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost has made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he has purchased with his own blood.

The Acts 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.

The Acts 20:30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.

1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

1 Timothy 4:2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

1 Timothy 4:3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God has created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

1 Timothy 4:4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:

1 Timothy 4:5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

1 Timothy 4:6 If you put the brothers in remembrance of these things, you shall be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto you have attained.

1 Timothy 4:7 But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself rather to godliness.

1 Timothy 4:8 For bodily exercise profits little: but godliness is profitable to all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

1 Timothy 4:9 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation.

How should Christians deal with heresies in the church? How are we to handle heretics in our midst? The original apostles of the Lord laid the Scriptural rules for dealing with unrepentant heretics in the church. When a person deviates from the original apostolic faith, he should be admonished and corrected in a prayerful but firm manner, speaking the truth to such a one in love. If the heretic persists in his perversions of the truth after at least two such admonitions by leaders of the local church, he is to be rejected from the church and disfellowshipped. Heresies are never to be condoned, accommodated or permitted for the sake of peace or unity. Any peace or unity that sacrifices the truth of the gospel and the original apostolic faith is false and counterproductive to the preaching of the gospel! That is not the unity of the Spirit which the Scripture encourages us to pursue, which is based on people having one Lord, one faith, one hope, one baptism and one God. If we do not have one faith then we cannot be truly one in the Spirit. To accept and accommodate heretics in the church just to avoid divisions is going contrary to the teachings of the original apostles, who insisted that unrepentant heretics must be excommunicated from the church and disfellowshipped. We’re not to have fellowship with such unfruitful workers of darkness, but we’re rather to reprove them. Paul insisted we should not even eat with such a supposed brother who has deviated from the faith and is now living in error, while John taught that to accommodate such a person under our roof and wish him or her Godspeed is to be a partaker in their evil deeds! Our Lord persistently and uncompromisingly clashed with the heretical religious leaders of his day, and he admonished his followers too to be uncompromising with heresies and heretics. Jesus praised a church for hating and not tolerating heresies, while lambasting another church for cozying with heresies and heretics. The original apostles too fought unrelenting battles with false teachers, false apostles and false prophets in their day. We must continually resist and oppose false ministers of the gospel in our day in a similar manner, in order to preserve the truth of the original faith to future generations.

Titus 3:10 A man that is an heretic after the first and second admonition reject;

Titus 3:11 Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sins, being condemned of himself.

Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brothers, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which you have learned; and avoid them.

Romans 16:18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.

Romans 16:19 For your obedience is come abroad to all men. I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise to that which is good, and simple concerning evil.

Ephesians 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

Ephesians 5:12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

Ephesians 5:13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatever does make manifest is light.

1 Corinthians 5:1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.

1 Corinthians 5:2 And you are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that has done this deed might be taken away from among you.

1 Corinthians 5:3 For I truly, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that has so done this deed,

1 Corinthians 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

1 Corinthians 5:5 To deliver such an one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

1 Corinthians 5:6 Your glorying is not good. Know you not that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?

1 Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:

1 Corinthians 5:8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

1 Corinthians 5:9 I wrote to you in an letter not to company with fornicators:

1 Corinthians 5:10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortionists, or with idolaters; for then must you needs go out of the world.

1 Corinthians 5:11 But now I have written to you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortionist; with such an one no not to eat.

1 Corinthians 5:12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not you judge them that are within?

1 Corinthians 5:13 But them that are without God judges. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.

2 John 1:4 I rejoiced greatly that I found of your children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father.

2 John 1:5 And now I beseech you, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment to you, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another.

2 John 1:6 And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it.

2 John 1:7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

2 John 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have worked, but that we receive a full reward.

2 John 1:9 Whoever transgresses, and stays not in the doctrine of Christ, has not God. He that stays in the doctrine of Christ, he has both the Father and the Son.

2 John 1:10 If there come any to you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:

2 John 1:11 For he that bids him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

Revelation 2:1 To the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things said he that holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks in the middle of the seven golden candlesticks;

Revelation 2:2 I know your works, and your labor, and your patience, and how you can not bear them which are evil: and you have tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and have found them liars:

Revelation 2:3 And have borne, and have patience, and for my name’s sake have labored, and have not fainted.

Revelation 2:5 Remember therefore from where you are fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come to you quickly, and will remove your candlestick out of his place, except you repent.

Revelation 2:6 But this you have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitanes, which I also hate.

Revelation 2:12 And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things said he which has the sharp sword with two edges;

Revelation 2:13 I know your works, and where you dwell, even where Satan’s seat is: and you hold fast my name, and have not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwells.

Revelation 2:14 But I have a few things against you, because you have there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit fornication.

Revelation 2:15 So have you also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate.

Revelation 2:16 Repent; or else I will come to you quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.

Revelation 2:18 And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things said the Son of God, who has his eyes like to a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass;

Revelation 2:19 I know your works, and charity, and service, and faith, and your patience, and your works; and the last to be more than the first.

Revelation 2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against you, because you suffer that woman Jezebel, which calls herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed to idols.

Revelation 2:21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.

Revelation 2:22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.

Revelation 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searches the reins and hearts: and I will give to every one of you according to your works.

2 Timothy 3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

2 Timothy 3:2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

2 Timothy 3:3 Without natural affection, truce breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

2 Timothy 3:4 Traitors, heady, high minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

2 Timothy 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

2 Timothy 3:6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

2 Timothy 3:7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

2 Timothy 3:8 Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.

2 Timothy 3:9 But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest to all men, as their’s also was.

Matthew 16:5 And when his disciples were come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread.

Matthew 16:6 Then Jesus said to them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

Matthew 16:7 And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have taken no bread.

Matthew 16:8 Which when Jesus perceived, he said to them, O you of little faith, why reason you among yourselves, because you have brought no bread?

Matthew 16:9 Do you not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets you took up?

Matthew 16:10 Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets you took up?

Matthew 16:11 How is it that you do not understand that I spoke it not to you concerning bread, that you should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees?

Matthew 16:12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

To fail to deal appropriately with heretics and dissemblers in the church is to tacitly accept the adulteration and corruption of the faith they peddle. A diluted and corrupt faith is worse than no faith at all, for it gives men false hope of salvation where none exists. A corrupted faith produces a hybrid religion that’s sterile and worthless— not only can such a religion not save their practitioners from the power of sin and death and from the damnation of hell, it mocks the true faith and offers skeptical unbelievers a reason to criticise religion and to avoid coming to the Lord. Heretics and their hybrid and false religion readily provide a reason for unbelievers to blaspheme true religion, for unbelievers rush to classify all Christians as one and the same, and attribute the greed and lasciviousness of one heretical group to all Christians. The great commission is not only to preach salvation by faith in the name of Jesus Christ, it’s also a mandate to preserve the true faith from being corrupted by heretics. As we preach Christ to the unsaved, we should not hesitate to let unbelievers know there’s a counterfeit version of the faith that’s as satanic as no faith at all. We should condemn heretics and their ungodliness and lasciviousness as much as we condemn sin and unbelief in unbelievers, so that the unsaved would know and appreciate the true faith from the counterfeit versions. A church that denies the divinity and human incarnation of Jesus Christ (through the virgin birth), that preaches salvation by works (rather than by faith in Christ Jesus and obedience to the gospel), that bows down to statues and images and prays to dead saints, and that accepts and practices homosexuality, licentiousness, covetousness and debauchery, while rejecting the eternal damnation of unrepentant sinners in the lake of fire, is no church of Jesus Christ! Such a heretical group is rather a synagogue of Satan, and true believers should point it out as such! There should be no pulling of punches when dealing with heretics!

1 John 2:18 Little children, it is the last time: and as you have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

1 John 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

1 John 2:20 But you have an unction from the Holy One, and you know all things.

1 John 2:21 I have not written to you because you know not the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth.

1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denies the Father and the Son.

1 John 2:23 Whoever denies the Son, the same has not the Father: he that acknowledges the Son has the Father also.

1 John 2:24 Let that therefore abide in you, which you have heard from the beginning. If that which you have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, you also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.

1 John 2:25 And this is the promise that he has promised us, even eternal life.

1 John 2:26 These things have I written to you concerning them that seduce you.

1 John 2:27 But the anointing which you have received of him stays in you, and you need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teaches you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it has taught you, you shall abide in him.

1 John 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

1 John 2:29 If you know that he is righteous, you know that every one that does righteousness is born of him.

1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof you have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

1 John 4:4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

1 John 4:5 They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world hears them.

1 John 4:6 We are of God: he that knows God hears us; he that is not of God hears not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.

Revelation 2:8 And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things said the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive;

Revelation 2:9 I know your works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but you are rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.

The true church is built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone. It’s not enough to preach the gospel and to build a church. For any church to stand the test of God’s judgement, it must be built on the solid rock of the original apostolic revelation. Paul warned all who build God’s church to be careful on the foundations upon which they build, and of the materials they use in building. Any foundation any man lays for the church that’s outside of the original apostolic revelation is mere sinking sand that will collapse in the day of judgement. Any church built with counterfeit/ combustible materials (heretical doctrines) will be consumed and destroyed by God’s fire. Any leaven of error allowed to remain in a group will grow to contaminate the entire group. A little leaven will leaven the whole lump with time. Therefore, we must purge out any leaven among us to ensure we remain pure and undefiled. Paul brutally called any gospel message that deviates from the original gospel he preached a perversion of the gospel of Christ, and placed anyone (including angels) propagating such a counterfeit gospel under a curse! In the book of Revelation, we’re sternly warned not to corrupt the word of God (by adding to or by subtracting from it), for the consequences are grave for anyone who tinkers with the Scriptures. God and his Word are one, and distorting the Word of God is attempting to corrupt the image and essence of God! No wonder God abhors heresies and heretics so vehemently!

Ephesians 2:19 Now therefore you are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God;

Ephesians 2:20 And are built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;

Ephesians 2:21 In whom all the building fitly framed together grows to an holy temple in the Lord:

Ephesians 2:22 In whom you also are built together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.

1 Corinthians 3:9 For we are laborers together with God: you are God’s husbandry, you are God’s building.

1 Corinthians 3:10 According to the grace of God which is given to me, as a wise master builder, I have laid the foundation, and another builds thereon. But let every man take heed how he builds thereupon.

1 Corinthians 3:11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 3:12 Now if any man build on this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;

1 Corinthians 3:13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.

1 Corinthians 3:14 If any man’s work abide which he has built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

1 Corinthians 3:15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

Matthew 7:24 Therefore whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man, which built his house on a rock:

Matthew 7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat on that house; and it fell not: for it was founded on a rock.

Matthew 7:26 And every one that hears these sayings of mine, and does them not, shall be likened to a foolish man, which built his house on the sand:

Matthew 7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat on that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

1 Corinthians 5:6 Your glorying is not good. Know you not that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?

1 Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:

1 Corinthians 5:8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Galatians 1:6 I marvel that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ to another gospel:

Galatians 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

Galatians 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed.

Galatians 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel to you than that you have received, let him be accursed.

Galatians 1:10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.

Galatians 1:11 But I certify you, brothers, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.

Galatians 1:12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Revelation 22:18 For I testify to every man that hears the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add to these things, God shall add to him the plagues that are written in this book:

Revelation 22:19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

In conclusion, heresies refer to both deviations from the original apostolic faith, as well as the sects propagating the contrary doctrines and practices. They are the result of ungodly men destitute of the Spirit trying to pervert the right ways of the Lord. The Scriptures are very clear about the need to firmly confront and expel unrepentant heretics from the church, to avoid corruption of the faith. We’re not only to desist from fellowshipping with heretics, we’re to also resist them untiringly, as they represent a counterfeit faith that both deceives and destroys gullible and unstable souls. Heretics are described in Scriptures as enemies and deniers of the Lord, who seek to subvert the truth of the gospel for pecuniary and other satanic purposes. The end of such messengers of Satan is assured in the lake of fire, as the Scriptures tell us. Lovers of the truth must therefore be united and single-minded in exposing and overcoming heresies wherever we encounter them, so that the purity of the original apostolic faith is preserved to future generations. That’s what contenders of the faith have done in every generation to reclaim and project the light of truth to men. We cannot shy away now from this noble task as the baton is handed to us to contend earnestly for the faith that was once delivered to the saints. The great commission involves not just the preaching of the gospel of peace, but also the repudiation of all perverted and accursed versions of the gospel. May God grant us the courage and boldness to speak out against errors and heresies wherever we encounter them, as well as the grace to treat unrepentant heretics the scriptural way. Amen.

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The Anti-Christ/The Beast (Part1): A Biblical Overview Of The Ultimate Man Of Sin And Mankind’s Satanic Ruler Of The Last World Empire!

(Unless otherwise stated, all Bible quotations are from the English Standard Version).

The anti-Christ spirit is any spirit that opposes and counters the Person and works of Jesus Christ. Thus, any spirit that denies the divinity of Christ, his incarnation, his vicarious suffering, death and resurrection for humanity’s redemption, as well as his bodily return to earth as King of kings and Lord of lords, is anti-Christ. Many individuals have manifested the anti-Christ spirit, beginning from apostolic times, in denying the divinity of Christ and his unique place as God’s only begotten Son and mankind’s only Saviour and Redeemer. Combating the anti-Christ spirit was a crucial part of the original apostolic ministry. It was part of the work of contending earnestly for the original apostolic faith. The fight to defend the Person and works of Christ is a fight to preserve the heart and soul of Christianity. It’s the substance of Christian apologetics.

1 John 2:18 Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour.

1 John 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.

1 John 2:20 But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge.

1 John 2:21 I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth.

1 John 2:22 Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son.

1 John 2:23 No one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father also.

1 John 2:24 Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father.

1 John 2:25 And this is the promise that he made to us— eternal life.

1 John 2:26 I write these things to you about those who are trying to deceive you.

1 John 2:27 But the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything—and is true and is no lie, just as it has taught you—abide in him.

1 John 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming.

1 John 2:29 If you know that he is righteous, you may be sure that everyone who practices righteousness has been born of him.

1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

1 John 4:2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God,

1 John 4:3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.

1 John 4:4 Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.

1 John 4:5 They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them.

1 John 4:6 We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

Jude 1:3 Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.

Jude 1:4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

The anti-Christ spirit is simply the satanic spirit of error trying to pervert the truth of the gospel and lead men and women away from God and into perdition. Although that spirit has possessed and used many men and women down through the ages to undermine the Person and works of Christ, the anti-Christ spirit will find its fullest expression and incarnation in a man towards the end of the age, just before the return of Christ to the earth in power and glory. Just as God became fully incarnate in a man called Jesus Christ, Satan’s anti-Christ spirit will fully incarnate a man too, who will be the very personification of Satan, as Christ is the very personification of God. This man, the anti-Christ, is variously called the man of sin or lawlessness, and the Beast, in the Bible, and will represent Satan’s ultimate personification of rebellion among men. He will receive the full authority and power of Satan, and will exalt himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped, making himself out as God. Satan’s ultimate purpose in deflecting worship away from the true God is to be worshipped himself, and he will achieve that through the person and ministry of the anti-Christ, who, with the full help and power of Satan at his disposal, will deceive almost the entire world into worshipping him as God. The anti-Christ will be the ultimate and final political, religious, economic and social ruler of the world, and he will have all the powers of Satan behind him in compelling almost all who dwell on the earth to worship Satan (through himself), or be excluded from participating in the political and economic activities of the world, and even be killed. He will be the ultimate universal evil dictator, under a unified world order controlled entirely by Satan, the god of this world.

2 Thessalonians 2:1 Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers,

2 Thessalonians 2:2 not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come.

2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,

2 Thessalonians 2:4 who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.

2 Thessalonians 2:5 Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things?

2 Thessalonians 2:6 And you know what is restraining him now so that he may be revealed in his time.

2 Thessalonians 2:7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way.

2 Thessalonians 2:8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming.

2 Thessalonians 2:9 The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders,

2 Thessalonians 2:10 and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.

2 Thessalonians 2:11 Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,

2 Thessalonians 2:12 in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Revelation 13:1 And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its heads.

Revelation 13:2 And the beast that I saw was like a leopard; its feet were like a bear’s, and its mouth was like a lion’s mouth. And to it the dragon gave his power and his throne and great authority.

Revelation 13:3 One of its heads seemed to have a mortal wound, but its mortal wound was healed, and the whole earth marveled as they followed the beast.

Revelation 13:4 And they worshiped the dragon, for he had given his authority to the beast, and they worshiped the beast, saying, Who is like the beast, and who can fight against it?

Revelation 13:5 And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months.

Revelation 13:6 It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven.

Revelation 13:7 Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation,

Revelation 13:8 and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb that was slain.

Revelation 13:9 If anyone has an ear, let him hear:

Revelation 13:10 If anyone is to be taken captive, to captivity he goes; if anyone is to be slain with the sword, with the sword must he be slain. Here is a call for the endurance and faith of the saints.

Revelation 13:11 Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon.

Revelation 13:12 It exercises all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and makes the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose mortal wound was healed.

Revelation 13:13 It performs great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people,

Revelation 13:14 and by the signs that it is allowed to work in the presence of the beast it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make an image for the beast that was wounded by the sword and yet lived.

Revelation 13:15 And it was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might even speak and might cause those who would not worship the image of the beast to be slain.

Revelation 13:16 Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead,

Revelation 13:17 so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name.

Revelation 13:18 This calls for wisdom: let the one who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his number is 666.

The anti-Christ, the man of sin, or the Beast, as he’s variously called in Scripture, will be revealed or become manifest after the rapture of the Church, for it’s the presence of the Church on earth that’s restraining his manifestation. When the church, the restraining influence, is taken out of the way in the rapture, the anti-Christ will rise to power and take control of a new world order that’s completely satanic and evil, and that enforces the direct worship of Satan through the Beast. The kings of the earth will hand over their power and authority to the anti-Christ, after he has subdued a few of them. This man of sin, whose coming is after the activity of Satan, will possess and manifest the entirety of Satan’s supernatural powers, with which he will mercilessly crush anyone resisting him. After defeating a few world powers, the rest will hand over their power and authority to him, to make him the supreme world ruler. His reign of lawlessness, which will target primarily restored Israel (who will be God’s main representatives on earth and carriers of the Gospel message), will seek to destroy Israel and any group carrying the knowledge of the one true God and of his Son Jesus Christ. He will enforce that people pay absolute allegiance to him and Satan, by receiving his mark and bowing down to his image, if they are to participate in any economic activity in the world. Those who refuse to worship him will be persecuted and killed. He will have power to overcome and subdue the saints of God until the return of Christ in power and glory, who will cast him alive into the lake of fire, as well as destroy his armies.

Revelation 17:1 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and said to me, Come, I will show you the judgment of the great prostitute who is seated on many waters,

Revelation 17:2 with whom the kings of the earth have committed sexual immorality, and with the wine of whose sexual immorality the dwellers on earth have become drunk.

Revelation 17:3 And he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness, and I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was full of blasphemous names, and it had seven heads and ten horns.

Revelation 17:4 The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and jewels and pearls, holding in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the impurities of her sexual immorality.

Revelation 17:5 And on her forehead was written a name of mystery: Babylon the great, mother of prostitutes and of earth’s abominations.

Revelation 17:6 And I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints, the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. When I saw her, I marveled greatly.

Revelation 17:7 But the angel said to me, Why do you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman, and of the beast with seven heads and ten horns that carries her.

Revelation 17:8 The beast that you saw was, and is not, and is about to rise from the bottomless pit and go to destruction. And the dwellers on earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world will marvel to see the beast, because it was and is not and is to come.

Revelation 17:9 This calls for a mind with wisdom: the seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman is seated;

Revelation 17:10 they are also seven kings, five of whom have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come, and when he does come he must remain only a little while.

Revelation 17:11 As for the beast that was and is not, it is an eighth but it belongs to the seven, and it goes to destruction.

Revelation 17:12 And the ten horns that you saw are ten kings who have not yet received royal power, but they are to receive authority as kings for one hour, together with the beast.

Revelation 17:13 These are of one mind and hand over their power and authority to the beast.

Revelation 17:14 They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.

Revelation 17:15 And the angel said to me, The waters that you saw, where the prostitute is seated, are peoples and multitudes and nations and languages.

Revelation 17:16 And the ten horns that you saw, they and the beast will hate the prostitute. They will make her desolate and naked, and devour her flesh and burn her up with fire,

Revelation 17:17 for God has put it into their hearts to carry out his purpose by being of one mind and handing over their royal power to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled.

Revelation 17:18 And the woman that you saw is the great city that has dominion over the kings of the earth.

During the reign of the anti-Christ, the men and women of the world who submit to his worship and rule will experience the severe wrath of God in the form of the great tribulation, which is a series of cataclysmic disruptions in nature to torment the inhabitants of the world. Both in the heavens, on earth and in the waters beneath the earth, God will use every elements of nature to torment those who submit to the rule of the anti-Christ. It will be a period of catastrophe never before experienced in the world. Men will seek for death to consume them, by virtue of the sufferings of the great tribulation, but death will be far from them. They will be tortured almost to death… but just almost. Immediately after the great tribulation, the Lord Jesus Christ will return to the earth in the Second Advent, to destroy the anti-Christ and his armies, and to set up the kingdom of God on earth and rule over the earth for a thousand years. It will be such a glorious reign of peace, righteousness, justice and prosperity that mankind has never imagined possible. It will be literally paradise restored on earth.

Revelation 14:6 Then I saw another angel flying directly overhead, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and language and people.

Revelation 14:7 And he said with a loud voice, Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come, and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the springs of water.

Revelation 14:8 Another angel, a second, followed, saying, Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who made all nations drink the wine of the passion of her sexual immorality.

Revelation 14:9 And another angel, a third, followed them, saying with a loud voice, If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand,

Revelation 14:10 he also will drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.

Revelation 14:11 And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name.

Revelation 16:1 Then I heard a loud voice from the temple telling the seven angels, Go and pour out on the earth the seven bowls of the wrath of God.

Revelation 16:2 So the first angel went and poured out his bowl on the earth, and harmful and painful sores came upon the people who bore the mark of the beast and worshiped its image.

Revelation 16:3 The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became like the blood of a corpse, and every living thing died that was in the sea.

Revelation 16:4 The third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of water, and they became blood.

Revelation 16:5 And I heard the angel in charge of the waters say, Just are you, O Holy One, who is and who was, for you brought these judgments.

Revelation 16:6 For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and you have given them blood to drink. It is what they deserve!

Revelation 16:7 And I heard the altar saying, Yes, Lord God the Almighty, true and just are your judgments!

Revelation 16:8 The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and it was allowed to scorch people with fire.

Revelation 16:9 They were scorched by the fierce heat, and they cursed the name of God who had power over these plagues. They did not repent and give him glory.

Revelation 16:10 The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and its kingdom was plunged into darkness. People gnawed their tongues in anguish

Revelation 16:11 and cursed the God of heaven for their pain and sores. They did not repent of their deeds.

Revelation 16:12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up, to prepare the way for the kings from the east.

Revelation 16:13 And I saw, coming out of the mouth of the dragon and out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs.

Revelation 16:14 For they are demonic spirits, performing signs, who go abroad to the kings of the whole world, to assemble them for battle on the great day of God the Almighty.

Revelation 16:15 (Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!)

Revelation 16:16 And they assembled them at the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.

Revelation 16:17 The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple, from the throne, saying, It is done!

Revelation 16:18 And there were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, and a great earthquake such as there had never been since man was on the earth, so great was that earthquake.

Revelation 16:19 The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and God remembered Babylon the great, to make her drain the cup of the wine of the fury of his wrath.

Revelation 16:20 And every island fled away, and no mountains were to be found.

Revelation 16:21 And great hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, fell from heaven on people; and they cursed God for the plague of the hail, because the plague was so severe.

In conclusion, the anti-Christ, or the Beast, will be the ultimate personification of the spirit of anti-Christ, which has been fighting, down through the ages, to deny the Person and works of Christ. That spirit will incarnate a man towards the end of this age, who will exalt himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped, making himself out as God. His appearing will be after the activity of Satan, who will hand all his power and authority to the anti-Christ, whereby he will do great signs and wonders to deceive the inhabitants of the earth to worship and serve him, and to receive his mark of allegiance. Those who refuse to bow down to him and his government will be persecuted and killed without mercy. The Anti-Christ will rise to the throne of the world after the rapture of the church. He will rule until the return of Christ in power and glory in the Second Advent, when he will be destroyed by being cast alive into the lake of fire. But before the Second Advent, God will plague the earth severely during the reign of the anti-Christ (the great tribulation), wherein the men who submit to the rule of the anti-Christ, and who worship him, will be severely tormented. By receiving the mark of the Beast and by worshiping him, such people will be doomed for ever, as they can never again experience God’s salvation. The lake of fire is the ultimate destination of such men, as well as the Beast whom they worshipped.

Revelation 19:11 Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war.

Revelation 19:12 His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself.

Revelation 19:13 He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.

Revelation 19:14 And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses.

Revelation 19:15 From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty.

Revelation 19:16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.

Revelation 19:17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly directly overhead, Come, gather for the great supper of God,

Revelation 19:18 to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all men, both free and slave, both small and great.

Revelation 19:19 And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies geathered to make war against him who was sitting on the horse and against his army.

Revelation 19:20 And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur.

Revelation 19:21 And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh.

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How Believers Are To Give Financially To Support God’s Work In The New Testament

Giving to support God’s work and God’s people is encouraged throughout Scripture, as it helps to meet needs in God’s house, as well as foster God’s work on earth. God is well pleased with such sacrifices and has promised to bless such gracious givers abundantly. In the Old Testament, giving was achieved mostly through mandatory offerings like tithes, first-fruits, sin-offerings, peace-offerings, etc,. How are believers to give financially to support God’s work and the needy in the New Testament, now that Christians are no longer under the Law, and are not subject to the mandatory laws of giving as contained in the now abolished Old Covenant? We shall examine relevant portions of the New Testament Scriptures to find the principles of giving for New Testament believers.

2 Corinthians 8:7 But since you excel in everything —in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you —see that you also excel in this grace of giving.

2 Corinthians 8:8 I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others.

2 Corinthians 8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich (NIV).

According to the Apostle Paul, giving is a grace that believers are to strive to excel in. There’s no commandment anymore in the New Testament regarding the proportion of one’s income to give in support of God’s work or God’s servants, including the poor and the needy. Giving in the New Testament is propelled by love, not by law. The love of God that’s been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit should inspire us to love God and the brethren sufficiently to want to support God’s work and God’s people in whatever way we can. The example of Christ’s sacrificial love is given here: though rich, he made himself poor for our sakes, so that we through his poverty might become rich. Love is demonstrated by giving! When you love much, you give much!

St. John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (NIV).

Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (NIV).

Giving should be done willingly, and not by compulsion. If there is a willingness of the mind to give, based on love of God and love of the brethen, then giving will not be a problem. The willingness to give stems from a heart that’s been conquered by the love of God. And once there’s a willingness to give, giving will be a cheerful experience! If you believe in a cause, you’ll willingly give to support it. If you’re convinced about a project, you’ll be concerned about it. And if you’re in love with someone, you’ll do all you can to express it. Love is identified by its characteristics, which are expressed by giving!

2 Corinthians 8:10 And here is my judgment about what is best for you in this matter. Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so.

2 Corinthians 8:11 Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means.

2 Corinthians 8:12 For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have (NIV).

Paul also makes an important point about giving willingly in love: when there is a willingness to give based on the out-working of love from the heart, whatever one gives is acceptable! What makes the gift acceptable in the sight of God is the motive behind it, and the willingness and cheerfulness of the giver. God loves a cheerful giver, whatever the amount given to support his cause on earth! God does not want his people to give their gifts grudgingly, or by compulsion. And he doesn’t want us to give what we don’t have! God doesn’t like people being manipulated to give offerings. He doesn’t like psychological pressures put on people that literally force them to give what they don’t plan or feel comfortable to give. God hates compelling and manipulating people to give offerings. We should not manipulate people to give offerings, because such offerings given under duress are given grudgingly, and they do not attract any blessings for the givers!

2 Corinthians 9:7 Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver (NIV).

Another important point to note about giving is that, the measure you give is the measure God will give back to you. The blessing that comes with giving is proportionate to what one gives. If you give bountifully, you should expect a bountiful harvest. If you give sparingly, you should expect to reap sparingly. Giving is like sowing: if a farmer sows a few seeds, he should expect to harvest few crops. Conversely, if he or she sows plenty seeds in a farm, all things being equal, he or she should expect a bountiful harvest. This is what the Scripture teaches.

2 Corinthians 9:6 Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.

2 Corinthians 9:8 And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.

2 Corinthians 9:9 As it is written: “They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.” (NIV)

St. Luke 6:38 If you give, you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving—large or small—it will be used to measure what is given back to you.” ( NLT).

Believers should not be tired of giving to support the weak and to meet needs in the house of God. We should help to bear one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ. When we help relieve the needs of brethren in the body of Christ, we strengthen people’s faith in the brotherhood and make thanksgiving to abound to God’s glory. Those we help thank God on our behalf and give glory to God. When we help people in need, others too will help us in our hour of need, ensuring thus that there’s no lack in the house of God.

2 Corinthians 9:11 Yes, you will be enriched so that you can give even more generously. And when we take your gifts to those who need them, they will break out in thanksgiving to God.

2 Corinthians 9:12 So two good things will happen—the needs of the Christians in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanksgiving to God.

2 Corinthians 9:13 You will be glorifying God through your generous gifts. For your generosity to them will prove that you are obedient to the Good News of Christ.

2 Corinthians 9:14 And they will pray for you with deep affection because of the wonderful grace of God shown through you.

2 Corinthians 8:13 Of course, I don’t mean you should give so much that you suffer from having too little. I only mean that there should be some equality.

2 Corinthians 8:14 Right now you have plenty and can help them. Then at some other time they can share with you when you need it. In this way, everyone’s needs will be met.

2 Corinthians 8:15 Do you remember what the Scriptures say about this? “Those who gathered a lot had nothing left over, and those who gathered only a little had enough.” (NLT).

Galatians 6:2 Share each other’s troubles and problems, and in this way obey the law of Christ (NLT).

Scripture teaches us that there is more blessing in giving than in receiving. All that are able and fit should labour to take care of their needs and those of others around them who are weak and disadvantaged. Christ himself became poor on our behalf that we through his poverty might become rich. We should not be tired of doing good, because harvest time is coming when we shall receive our rewards from the Lord. Don’t wait for others to give to you! Labour to take care of yourself and the poor and needy around you! Even someone as busy as Apostle Paul laboured in some places to take care of himself and others around him, while still preaching the gospel!

The Acts 20:33 “I have never coveted anyone’s money or fine clothing.

The Acts 20:34 You know that these hands of mine have worked to pay my own way, and I have even supplied the needs of those who were with me.

The Acts 20:35 And I have been a constant example of how you can help the poor by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘ It is more blessed to give than to receive. ‘” (NLT).

1 Thessalonians 2:9 Don’t you remember, dear brothers and sisters, how hard we worked among you? Night and day we toiled to earn a living so that our expenses would not be a burden to anyone there as we preached God’s Good News among you (NLT).

Galatians 6:9 So don’t get tired of doing what is good. Don’t get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time.

Galatians 6:10 Whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone, especially to our Christian brothers and sisters (NLT).

When we examine some instances in the New Testament when needs arose in the Church, we see how love can inspire and motivate people to stretch themselves beyond their limits inorder to meet needs in the house of God. The New Testament believers were not under any mandatory law of giving like tithe-paying, giving of firstfruits, etc, as was practised in the Old Testament. There were no threats of curses to compel people to give as was applicable under the Law. However, under grace and motivated by the love of God, some believers in the New Testament gave up to 100% of their resources to support God’s work as well as help the poor and needy of God’s people! People were known to sell their properties and give the entire proceeds to the church, to meet urgent and serious needs! Because of this extraordinary display of love, no one lacked anything in a congregation that ran into tens of thousands! The people gave out of palpable love, and the church leaders, neither greedy nor covetous like most of our shepherds of today, didn’t just corner the money for themselves, but ensured everyone in need in God’s house was taken care of! Selfless and exemplary leadership will always inspire sacrificial giving that will make an extraordinary impact among God’s people!

The Acts 2:44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;

The Acts 2:45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need (NLT).

The Acts 4:32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.

The Acts 4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.

The Acts 4:34 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,

The Acts 4:35 And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.

The Acts 4:36 And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus,

The Acts 4:37 Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet (NLT).

Preachers in the New Testament don’t have to take believers back to the bondage of the Law to compel them to pay tithes, first-fruit offerings, vows, etc, inorder to raise funds to meet needs in the church. That’s not only fraudulent and dragging people back to the curse of the Law that Christ has delivered us from, it’s also taking people away from the grace of God! Teaching New Testament believers to pay tithe as a mandatory law with curses attached for non-payment is doing a great disservice to the gospel of grace. Believers under grace, inspired by the love of God and exemplary and selfless leadership, will easily outperform people under the Old Covenant when it comes to giving, as demonstrated above. Once church leaders are not covetous and greedy and do not try to selfishly grab church funds to finance their lavish and flamboyant lifestyles while the flocks in their care suffer deprivation, people will give even beyond their abilities, to demonstrate their love for God!

2 Corinthians 8:1 Now I want to tell you, dear brothers and sisters, what God in his kindness has done for the churches in Macedonia.

2 Corinthians 8:2 Though they have been going through much trouble and hard times, their wonderful joy and deep poverty have overflowed in rich generosity.

2 Corinthians 8:3 For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford but far more. And they did it of their own free will.

2 Corinthians 8:4 They begged us again and again for the gracious privilege of sharing in the gift for the Christians in Jerusalem.

2 Corinthians 8:5 Best of all, they went beyond our highest hopes, for their first action was to dedicate themselves to the Lord and to us for whatever directions God might give them (NLT).

Finally, give what you have and not what you don’t have! Don’t borrow to give! Don’t pledge or make a vow of what you don’t have! God understands when you don’t have. He does not expect you to borrow to please him. Don’t feel bad or guilty that you can’t give to support God’s work because you don’t have to give at the moment. Opportunities will always be available for you to give when you have. Resist the temptation and pressure of manipulative men of God to make rash vows that may be hard for you to fulfill later. It is better not to make a vow than to make one you may not be able to fulfill, for that may attract curses rather than blessings! When you don’t have, you should be supported by the church and others at that time, rather than being made to feel bad that you can’t give!

2 Corinthians 8:14 Right now you have plenty and can help them. Then at some other time they can share with you when you need it. In this way, everyone’s needs will be met.

2 Corinthians 8:15 Do you remember what the Scriptures say about this? “Those who gathered a lot had nothing left over, and those who gathered only a little had enough.” (NLT).

Ecclesiastes 5:4 When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow.

Ecclesiastes 5:5 It is better not to make a vow than to make one and not fulfill it.

Ecclesiastes 5:6 Do not let your mouth lead you into sin. And do not protest to the temple messenger, “My vow was a mistake.” Why should God be angry at what you say and destroy the work of your hands? (NIV).

In conclusion, giving in the New Testament is to be done voluntarily, cheerfully and without compulsion. There are no mandatory laws compelling people to give any particular proportion of their income to support God’s work. However, the love of God constrains God’s people to give willingly, cheerfully and bountifully to support God’s servants and the needy among God’s people. People should give what they have, from grateful love-filled hearts. No one should allow himself/herself to be pressured to give beyond his or her means, or to make pledges to God of what he or she does not have. Give what you can afford, without grumbling and complaining, for God loves a cheerful giver! But remember that giving is like sowing: if you sow sparingly, you’ll reap sparingly; if you sow bountifully, you’ll reap bountifully. May we never be weary of doing good and helping those in need, because harvest time is coming!

Hebrews 13:16 Don’t forget to do good and to share what you have with those in need, for such sacrifices are very pleasing to God (NIV).

Thank you so much for visiting this blog. We appreciate you and the precious time you spared to read through this lengthy post. If you were blessed by this message, kindly like, drop a comment and share with others (with due acknowledgement of the source). You can also follow us to have subsequent posts sent directly to you through your email. God bless you abundantly in Jesus name! Amen!

The Relationship Of The Gentiles To The Law Of Moses

The Acts 15:1 But some men came down from Judea and were teaching the brothers, Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.

The Acts 15:2 And after Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and debate with them, Paul and Barnabas and some of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and the elders about this question.

Paul and Barnabas, separated by the Holy Spirit to take the Gospel to the Gentiles, had been preaching about salvation through faith in Christ. And God had been blessing their efforts with massive conversion of the Gentiles. Suddenly, some men came from Jerusalem, the headquarters of the Jewish Church, and started insisting that the Gentiles could not be saved by just having faith in Christ and obeying the gospel. That to be fully and completely saved, Gentile believers must believe in Christ and also keep the Mosaic Law. What they meant was that, salvation for the Gentiles must be by grace plus observance of the Mosaic Law.

I want us to understand the fundamental issue here. Paul and Barnabas preached salvation by faith in Christ alone. By their preaching, you don’t need to observe the Mosaic Law to be saved. By grace you are saved, through faith in Christ alone. Some men from Jerusalem who were also believers in Christ (Jewish believers) came from Jerusalem and countered the teachings of Paul and Barnabas on this issue. They told the Gentiles that faith in Christ alone was not sufficient for salvation. They taught that, to be fully saved, the Gentiles had to get circumcised (an entry point into the Mosaic covenant) and keep the law of Moses, in addition to having faith in Christ. In effect, those Judaizers preached that Gentiles had to become converts to Judaism first, before they could become born again. As a result, a great dispute ensued. Paul and Barnabas argued fiercely with these Judaisers from Jerusalem. The contention on this issue was so hot that the Church in Antioch resolved the matter needed to be settled by the council of apostles and elders in Jerusalem. It was a big enough issue to call for the first church council. It’s still a big enough issue in our day because the confusion still lingers.

So, Paul and Barnabas and other appointed members of the church in Antioch went up to Jerusalem to meet the apostles and elders there to resolve this issue. Let’s hear what the first church council had to say about this matter.

The Acts 15:4 When they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and the apostles and the elders, and they declared all that God had done with them.

The Acts 15:5 But some believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees rose up and said, It is necessary to circumcise them and to order them to keep the law of Moses.

The Acts 15:6 The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter.

The Acts 15:7 And after there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.

The Acts 15:8 And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us,

The Acts 15:9 and he made no distinction between us and them, having cleansed their hearts by faith.

The Acts 15:10 Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear?

The Acts 15:11 But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.

Above was Peter’s response to the debate. The Apostle Peter saw the compelling of the Gentiles to keep the Law of Moses as an unnecessary yoke which even they themselves being Jews couldn’t observe faithfully. Let us also carefully consider James’ response, one of the pillars of the Jewish Church, and the head of the Apostolic council in Jerusalem at the time. Isn’t it interesting that James (the half-brother of Jesus) was the head of the Church in Jerusalem at this time, and not Peter, whom the Roman Catholics consider the first Pope? Let’s look at James’ response carefully and digest it before we move on. This is very important!

The Acts 15:12 And all the assembly fell silent, and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles.

The Acts 15:13 After they finished speaking, James replied, Brothers, listen to me.

The Acts 15:14 Simeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take from them a people for his name.

The Acts 15:15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written,

The Acts 15:16 After this I will return, and I will rebuild the tent of David that has fallen; I will rebuild its ruins, and I will restore it,

The Acts 15:17 that the remnant of mankind may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who are called by my name, says the Lord, who makes these things

The Acts 15:18 known from of old.

The Acts 15:19 Therefore my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God,

The Acts 15:20 but should write to them to abstain from the things polluted by idols, and from sexual immorality, and from what has been strangled, and from blood.

The Acts 15:21 For from ancient generations Moses has had in every city those who proclaim him, for he is read every Sabbath in the synagogues.

James too, like Peter, did not see any reason why the Gentiles should keep the law of Moses, other than the universal laws God gave to mankind through Noah, to avoid eating blood, strangled animals and food offered to idols, and to abstain from sexual immorality. Out of the entire Mosaic Law, these were the things singled out for the Gentiles to observe!

The Acts 15:22 Then it seemed good to the apostles and the elders, with the whole church, to choose men from among them and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They sent Judas called Barsabbas, and Silas, leading men among the brothers,

The Acts 15:23 with the following letter: The brothers, both the apostles and the elders, to the brothers who are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia, greetings.

The Acts 15:24 Since we have heard that some persons have gone out from us and troubled you with words, unsettling your minds, although we gave them no instructions,

The Acts 15:25 it has seemed good to us, having come to one accord, to choose men and send them to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,

The Acts 15:26 men who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Acts 15:27 We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will tell you the same things by word of mouth.

The Acts 15:28 For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay on you no greater burden than these requirements:

The Acts 15:29 that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from what has been strangled, and from sexual immorality. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.

That was the conclusion of the Apostolic Council at Jerusalem on the issue of whether or not Gentile believers should obey and keep Law of Moses, in addition to having faith in Christ Jesus, before they could be saved. Please, digest it carefully and let it sink in. This is potentially revolutionary!!!

The Acts 15:30 So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch, and having gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter.

The Acts 15:31 And when they had read it, they rejoiced because of its encouragement.

See the effect of this liberating truth on the Gentile believers!!! Brothers and sisters, the solution to that seemingly irrelevant question was the defining point of the Gospel. It was what saved the Gospel of grace and preserved the purity of the Gospel. It was the greatest battle Paul fought throughout his ministry, the battle to  keep grace from being corrupted and made of non-effect by the Law. It was the crux of the Epistle to the Galatians, who had been seduced by the grace plus Law theology and had fallen from grace thereby.

To begin with, the Old Testament was a covenant between God and the Israelites. The Gentiles (non-Jews) were not a part of that covenant, although God had in mind to bring them into His blessings later. But, the Gentiles were not a part of that Covenant on Mount Sinai that God made with Israel. A few Gentiles like Ruth had to renounce their gods and nationalities and become proselyted to the Jewish religion to enjoy the benefits of that Covenant. But, basically, it was a contractual agreement between God and Israel. If you’re not a party to a contract, you will neither benefit from, nor suffer from the contract. True or false?

Let me draw a conclusion to what we’ve been saying: the Gentile believers do not need to keep the Law of Moses to be saved. We are not under the Law of Moses. Observance of the Law of Moses cannot save us. We are not under the Old Testament. The Old Testament is expired and has been replaced by the New. The Old Testament and the Mosaic Law that regulate it is an expired document that can only bring death, not life!!!The Law is a prisoner! And we have allowed it to hold Grace captive and made it ineffectual.

Galatians 3:10 For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.

Galatians 3:11 Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for The righteous shall live by faith.

Galatians 3:12 But the law is not of faith, rather The one who does them shall live by them.

Galatians 3:1 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified.

Galatians 3:2 Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith?

Galatians 3:3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?

Galatians 3:4 Did you suffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?

Galatians 3:5 Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith—

Ladies and gentlemen, let’s remind ourselves what the Law is, as used by Paul and other New Testament writers. By the Law, we mean the entire Mosaic Law! Yes, the entirety of the Mosaic Law! The moral law, the statutes, the judgments, the religious, the social, the economic laws governing the lives of God’s people in the Old Testament, the Israelites. This refers to the over 600 statutes and ordinances in the Mosaic Law, including the laws regulating the Tabernacle worship, the priesthood, tithes, etc.

God’s gift of salvation does not depend on observance of the Mosaic Law. It’s predicated on the grace of God in his promise to Abraham. A promise made to Abraham not because he observed any works of the Law, but simply because he believed God.

Galatians 3:15 To give a human example, brothers: even with a man-made covenant, no one annuls it or adds to it once it has been ratified.

Galatians 3:16 Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, And to offsprings, referring to many, but referring to one, And to your offspring, who is Christ.

Galatians 3:17 This is what I mean: the law, which came 430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void.

Galatians 3:18 For if the inheritance comes by the law, it no longer comes by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise.

Galatians 3:19 Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary.

Friends, the Law is a cage, a prison house! It is a curse! If you live under the Mosaic Law and expect to be blessed thereby, you’re living a lie. The only way you can live under the Law is by unfailingly keeping every single law/ordinance contained in the Law. If you break one, you’re dead!!! The Law is a trap house that leads to death. It doesn’t have life or blessing in it and it wasn’t designed to, in the first place.

Galatians 4:21 Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law?

Galatians 4:22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman.

Galatians 4:23 But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise.

Galatians 4:24 Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar.

Galatians 4:25 Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.

Galatians 4:26 But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.

Galatians 4:27 For it is written, Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear; break forth and cry aloud, you who are not in labor! For the children of the desolate one will be more than those of the one who has a husband.

Galatians 4:28 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.

Galatians 4:29 But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now.

Galatians 4:30 But what does the Scripture say? Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman.

Galatians 4:31 So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.

Somebody will go to Deuteronomy 22: 5 and say,‘ you see, a woman wearing a garment that belongs to a man is an abomination’, but Deuteronomy 22:9-12 also says, ‘Do not plant any crop in the same field as your grapevines; if you do , you’re forbidden to use either the grapes or the produce of the other crop. Do not hitch an ox or a donkey together in plowing. Do not wear cloth made by weaving wool and linen together’. Why don’t they that desire to keep the Law, keep the whole Law? Why do they wear garments of mixed fibers, and sow different crops in their farms? These were all abominations under the Law!

Grasp this! The Law was given to show man what sin is. And the Law was to be useful in that regard until the coming of Christ. After Christ has come, the Law, having fulfilled its purpose, becomes useless! Isn’t it distressing how ministers cage God’s people with the Law and make them live under a curse? Haven’t you heard people say ‘if you don’t pay your tithe, you’re under a curse’?, using Malachi 3:9, a scripture related to the support of the Levitical Priesthood under the Mosaic Law. Are these ministers of tithe and Malachi in the old or new covenant?

Those desiring to remain as part of the Old Covenant of Mount Sinai are children of Hagar. The Children of Promise, like Isaac, belong to the New Jerusalem. Hagar and her children are in bondage. All those under the Law are in bondage!!! And guess what? They will always be the ones to persecute the children of Promise. But, you know what? They will always be cast away, like Ishmael.

Galatians 3:21 Is the law then contrary to the promises of God? Certainly not! For if a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law.

Galatians 3:22 But the Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.

Galatians 3:23 Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed.

Galatians 3:24 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith.

Galatians 3:25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian.

Galatians 5:7 You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?

Galatians 5:8 This persuasion is not from him who calls you.

Galatians 5:9 A little leaven leavens the whole lump.

It’s important we realise who Paul was addressing here- born again Christians in Galatia who once believed in salvation by faith in Christ alone, but had now been seduced to believe in salvation by Grace in Christ plus obedience to the Old Testament Mosaic Law. Think about it, friends. A born again Christian can start in the Spirit (justification and sanctification by faith through grace) and end up in the flesh (observance of the Law).

Galatians 5:1 For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.

Galatians 5:2 Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you.

Galatians 5:3 I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law.

Galatians 5:4 You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace.

 If you insist on keeping the Law that has been abolished, you have fallen from grace. Christ is of no use to you! Did you get that? If you want to keep one part of the Law of Moses, then you must keep the entire Mosaic Law. And if you do that (if you can!), you’re a lost slave! Whoever persuades a believer to go back to any portion of the Mosaic Law is not under the influence of the Holy Spirit. The person is working at cross purposes with God, whoever he is! I don’t care if he’s a Pope or an Archbishop or a General Overseer. He’s missed the mark of the Gospel!

Galatians 6:12 It is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh who would force you to be circumcised, and only in order that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ.

Galatians 6:13 For even those who are circumcised do not themselves keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh.

Galatians 6:14 But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

If you’re preaching grace alone minus the Law of Moses, you’ll get heavily persecuted. Religious people like to make a ritualistic, even if hypocritical, show of keeping some carnal ordinances, especially those that make them self-righteous. They want to work for their salvation, and pay their way to heaven through tithe, etc. And the preachers who love the wages of unrighteousness, like Balaam, love to dwell on the Mosaic Law, because of tithes, first fruits and seeds!!!

Galatians 5:11 But if I, brothers, still preach circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been removed.

Galatians 5:12 I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!

The Mosaic Law and the Old Covenant it represents have been nullified and abolished, and have been replaced by the New Covenant ratified on Calvary by the blood Jesus. We are no longer under the Law, neither are we anymore under the Old Covenant!

Hebrews 8:7 For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second.

Hebrews 8:8 For he finds fault with them when he says: Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will establish a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah,

Hebrews 8:9 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt. For they did not continue in my covenant, and so I showed no concern for them, declares the Lord.

Hebrews 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

Hebrews 8:11 And they shall not teach, each one his neighbor and each one his brother, saying, Know the Lord, for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest.

Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.

Hebrews 8:13 In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.

Romans 7:1 Or do you not know, brothers—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law is binding on a person only as long as he lives?

Romans 7:2 Thus a married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage.

Romans 7:3 Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress.

Romans 7:4 Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God.

Romans 7:5 For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death.

Romans 7:6 But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve not under the old written code but in the new life of the Spirit.

All believers in Christ died with him on the cross and thus became dead to the Law of Moses. The Law does not have jurisdiction over a dead man, does it? If you’re in Christ, you’re dead to the world and the Law of Moses. The things that are expired and that we are no longer required to keep, are the 600 plus statutes, judgements, ordinances and precepts in the Mosaic Law that govern the religious, social and economic lives of Israelites, from Exodus to Malachi. When we say the Old Testament is expired and abolished, we’re actually talking about the Covenant God had with Israel on Mount Sinai, given through Moses, and regulated by the Mosaic Law.

The Gospels, the book of Acts and the Epistles of the Apostles of Christ constitute the rule of faith for the New Testament believer. What this means is that, you don’t have to go to the Mosaic Law to find out what God requires of you to do in matters of conduct, belief and practice.  Also expired and no longer to be observed are the laws regarding the Levitical priesthood, the sacrifices of that priesthood and the laws that sustained that priesthood etc. Now, that doesn’t mean the Old Testament portion of your Bible is useless and should be ripped off. The Old Testament portion of the Bible does not contain only the Mosaic Law. In the Old Testament, we have accounts of creation, the progressive revelation of God, God’s dealings with man, prophecies (some of which have been fulfilled, and some of which are yet to be fulfilled). Even in the Mosaic Law and other portions of the Old Testament, we have types and shadows of Christ in the various events and processes that transpired in the lives of godly men and women. Most importantly, we have examples of godly men and women, how they stood for righteousness and how they were blessed of God. That’s the purpose of the old testament– to act as examples for us to learn from, so that we don’t make the same mistakes some people made and lost favour with God.

1 Corinthians 10:1 Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea,

 1 Corinthians 10:2 all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea,

1 Corinthians 10:3 all ate the same spiritual food,

1 Corinthians 10:4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.

1 Corinthians 10:5 But with most of them God was not well pleased, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.

1 Corinthians 10:6 now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted.

1 Corinthians 10:7 and do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.”

1 Corinthians 10:8 nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell;

1 Corinthians 10:9 nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents;

1 Corinthians 10:10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer.

1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.

1 Corinthians 10:12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.

The revelation of God in the Old Testament was in shadow and progressive, culminating in the full revelation of God in Christ. The Old Testament is not only truly historical, it also reveals the plan of God and declares the future of mankind. But remember– Christ is the substance and the fulfillment of the types and shadows depicted in the Old Testament. So, read and study the Old Testament, along with the new. Both make up the Bible! Hebrews 11 also chronicles some of the heroic deeds of some of the men and women of faith in the Old Testament. Their biographies are inspiring. If they accomplished what they did under the blood of bulls and goats which could only cover sin but not take it away, how much more should we accomplish under the blood of Christ which alone can take away sin.

But please, don’t forget the most important message of this teaching- the laws of Moses as contained in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy are expired and abolished, and have no relevance in the conduct and practice of the New Testament church. What governs the New Testament churches is the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, as contained in the Gospels, the book of Acts and the Epistles of the Apostles of Christ. Read and study the Old Testament! Without a firm understanding of the Old Testament, you will not understand nor appreciate the new. But, don’t let any man bring you back to bondage by demanding obedience to any part of the expired and abolished Mosaic Laws, especially the laws of tithing, first fruits, etc, that relate specifically to the now- abolished Levitical priesthood. As we study about the heroes and heroines of faith in the Old Testament and learn from their examples, let us remember one thing- we have a better covenant than theirs, which is founded upon better promises.

 Hebrews 11:39 and all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise,

Hebrews 11:40 God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.

Therefore let us not look back and yearn to be like them, rather let us look up and aspire to be better, because we have a better covenant founded upon better promises. Servants of God, fear not! The New Testament has better provisions for your welfare. Stop going back to the expired Mosaic Law to look for tithe and first fruits by fraudulent means. You’re not a Levitical priest!!! Once you go back to keeping any part of the Mosaic Law, you place yourself under a curse and remove yourself from grace.

Thank you so much for visiting this blog. We appreciate you and the precious time you spared to read through this lengthy post. If you were blessed by this message, kindly like, comment and share to others (with due acknowledgement of the source). You can also follow us to have subsequent posts sent directly to you through your email. God bless you abundantly in Jesus name! Amen!

Is The Law Of Tithing For New Testament Gentile Believers?

Tithe means one-tenth of a thing, or a tenth part of something. The doctrine of believers paying a tenth of their income to the church, as a mandatory biblical requirement, is zealously taught and demanded by almost all churches. In fact, some people teach that not to pay tithe is such a heinous sin against God that it could even affect one’s salvation. This topic is so important that it merits a detailed biblical exposition, in order to understand the place of tithing in the New Testament Church of Jesus Christ.

The first record of tithing in the Bible is found in the 14th Chapter of Genesis, where Abraham (then Abram) paid tithe to King Melchizedek, the High Priest of God.

Genesis 14:18 Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine: and he was priest of God Most High.

Genesis 14:19 He blessed him, and said, “Blessed be Abram of God Most High, possessor of heaven and earth:

Genesis 14:20 and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand.” Abram gave him a tenth of all.

We are not told whether Abram had a specific commandment to give a tenth or 10% of the spoils he had seized from the enemies he fought and overcame. We do not know and cannot tell whether tithing was a regular habit with Abram or whether it was just coincidental that he gave a tenth of the spoils as offering to God’s Priest.  It is instructive to note that nowhere else is it recorded that Abraham gave tithes again.

The next record of tithing in the Bible is in Genesis Chapter 28, where Jacob, Abraham’s grandson, vowed to give God 10% of his wealth, if God would protect and bless him on the journey he was about to embark upon.

Genesis 28:20 Jacob vowed a vow, saying, “If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and clothing to put on,

Genesis 28:21 so that I come again to my father’s house in peace, and Yahweh will be my God,

Genesis 28:22 then this stone, which I have set up for a pillar, will be God’s house. Of all that you will give me I will surely give the tenth to you.”

It is worth noting that Jacob promised to give God his tithe, not as in obedience to a mandatory commandment from God, but as a vow, as a promise contingent on God’s protection and blessings. In other words, Jacob was saying he would give 10% of his wealth if God blessed and protected him on his journey. However, if God failed to protect or bless him, he wasn’t obligated to give God his tithe. Tithing for Jacob was a contractual agreement with God, not an obligatory commandment from God. You don’t give God conditions before you obey a commandment of the Lord. Whether God blesses you or not, whether he protects you or not, you are required to keep his commandment, as a child of God. You don’t negotiate on a divine commandment.

We do not see tithing again until it appears in Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, as part of the laws given to Moses by God, for the support of the Levitical priesthood, the widows, the poor, the needy and the strangers in the land of Israel.

Leviticus 27:30 “All the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the trees, is Yahweh’s. It is holy to Yahweh.

Leviticus 27:32 All the tithe of the herds or the flocks, whatever passes under the rod, the tenth shall be holy to Yahweh.

Numbers 18:24 For the tithe of the children of Israel, which they offer as a wave offering to Yahweh, I have given to the Levites for an inheritance. Therefore I have said to them, ‘Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.”

Numbers 18:26 “Moreover you shall speak to the Levites, and tell them, ‘When you take of the children of Israel the tithe which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then you shall offer up a wave offering of it for Yahweh, a tithe of the tithe.

Numbers 18:27 your wave offering shall be reckoned to you, as though it were the grain of the threshing floor, and as the fullness of the wine press.

Numbers 18:28 Thus you also shall offer a wave offering to Yahweh of all your tithes, which you receive of the children of Israel; and of it you shall give Yahweh’s wave offering to Aaron the priest.

Numbers 18:29 Out of all your gifts, you shall offer every wave offering of Yahweh, of all its best, even the holy part of it out of it.’

Tithing was thus made a commandment to the Israelites, to whom God gave his laws on Mount Sinai. As a commandment for the Jews, its observance was obligatory, with severe penalties from God for disobedience.

Malachi 3:8 Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me! But you say, ‘How have we robbed you?’ In tithes and offerings.

Malachi 3:9 you are cursed with the curse; for you rob me, even this whole nation.

Malachi 3:10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house, and test me now in this,” says Yahweh of Armies, “if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough for.

Malachi 3:11 I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast its fruit before its time in the field,” says Yahweh of Armies.

Malachi 3:12 “All nations shall call you blessed, for you will be a delightful land,” says Yahweh of Armies.

Because the tithes of the children of Israel, the Jews, belonged to God, failure to bring their tithes to God amounted to robbing God. Keeping God’s property away from God is akin to stealing from God. Such act of robbery against God was to be punished with a curse on such offenders in the land of Israel. Devourers would be released upon them (sicknesses, plagues, famine, war, pestilence, etc), and they would thus experience severe hardship, suffering, barrenness and unfruitfulness. However, if they were faithful in paying their tithes, the Jews would be tremendously blessed, all things being equal.

Now, let’s look at how tithes were to be paid and used in Israel, in accordance with the Mosaic Law which regulated the payment and utilization of tithes. The Jews were mandated to pay two sets of tithes, the first at the end of each year (the yearly tithe), and the second at the end of every three years (the three- yearly tithe). The yearly tithe was for the owner of the tithe and his family to eat and enjoy in the presence of God, sharing the feast with the Levites, the poor, the fatherless, the widows and the strangers.

Deuteronomy 14:22 you shall surely tithe all the increase of your seed, that which comes out of the field year by year.

Deuteronomy 14:23 You shall eat before Yahweh your God, in the place which he chooses, to cause his name to dwell there, the tithe of your grain, of your new wine, and of your oil, and the firstborn of your herd and of your flock; that you may learn to fear Yahweh your God always.

Deuteronomy 14:24 If the way is too long for you, so that you are not able to carry it, because the place is too far from you, which Yahweh your God shall choose, to set his name there, when Yahweh your God shall bless you;

Deuteronomy 14:25 then you shall turn it into money, and bind up the money in your hand, and shall go to the place which Yahweh your God shall choose.

Deuteronomy 14:26 You shall trade the money for whatever your soul desires, for cattle, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatever your soul asks of you; and you shall eat there before Yahweh your God, and you shall rejoice, you and your household.

Deuteronomy 14:27 you shall not forsake the Levite who is within your gates, for he has no portion nor inheritance with you.

The three-yearly tithes were to be collected at the end of every three years, and were to be kept in storehouses within every city in Israel, for the sustenance of the Levites, the poor, the widows, the fatherless and the strangers.

Deuteronomy 14:28 at the end of every three years you shall bring all the tithe of your increase in the same year, and shall store it within your gates.

Deuteronomy 14:29 The Levite, because he has no portion nor inheritance with you, and the foreigner living among you, and the fatherless, and the widow, who are within your gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; that Yahweh your God may bless you in all the work of your hand which you do.

The three-yearly tithe was the main tithe for the upkeep and maintenance of the Levites, widows, the poor, the fatherless and strangers in the land of Israel. Its purpose was to ensure that there was food always for the Levites (who had no inheritance in Israel and worked full time in the service of God), the poor, widows, the fatherless and strangers.

Amos 4:4 Come to Bethel, and transgress; at Gilgal multiply transgression; and bring your sacrifices every morning, and your tithes after three years:

Malachi 3:10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house, and test me now in this,” says Yahweh of Armies, “if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough for.

As shown from the scriptures above, tithes were not meant for the Levites alone. Tithes were meant to be brought into store houses in every city in Israel, and were to be distributed to Levites, widows, the fatherless, the poor and the strangers. Even when it was lawful to pay tithe under the law, it was not to be paid privately to a Levite, and it was not to be used by the Levites alone. The tithes of the people was to provide food for the entire house of God, and not just for Levites alone!

In the New Testament, tithe was mentioned only in the Gospels, and in relation to the Jews, who were still under obligation to keep the Law of Moses, of which tithing was a part.

St. Matthew 23:23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cumin, and have left undone the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faith. But you ought to have done these, and not to have left the other undone.

St. Luke 11:42 But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and every herb, but you bypass justice and the love of God. You ought to have done these, and not to have left the other undone.

Jesus strongly rebuked the hypocritical Pharisees, who would meticulously require the people to pay tithe of everything, including the smallest seeds, but ignored more important or weightier matters of the law, such as justice, mercy, faith, and love of God. As far as Jesus was concerned, these matters were far more important than tithing. Unlike our Pastors of today who make tithing the weightiest matter of the word of God and of the faith, Jesus placed tithing for the Jews on the lowest rung of the spiritual ladder, below justice, mercy, faith and love of God. Tithing is not the panacea our modern day Pastors are making it out to be. Tithing was a minor part of the entire Law of Moses, and was never the basis of righteousness or the means to secure God’s favour. In fact, a Pharisee, like a lot of Church members today who seek to be justified by payment of tithe, was condemned by Jesus and went away without God’s favour, though he was a faithful tither.

St. Luke 18:10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray; one was a Pharisee, and the other was a tax collector.

St. Luke 18:11 The Pharisee stood and prayed to himself like this: ‘God, I thank you, that I am not like the rest of men, extortionists, unrighteous, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.

St. Luke 18:12 I fast twice a week. I give tithes of all that I get.’

St. Luke 18:13 But the tax collector, standing far away, wouldn’t even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’

St. Luke 18:14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted”.

Indeed, tithe paying does not justify anyone, and cannot be used as a basis to secure God’s favour, if you don’t observe the weightier matters of God’s word.

For those who quote these passages in the Gospels as evidence that tithing is a New Testament doctrine for the Gentile believers, let me remind us that Jesus ministered to the Jews only, throughout his ministry. Infact, he came primarily and originally for the Jews and was their minister.

Romans 15:8 now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers:

St. John 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

St. Matthew 15:24 But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Jesus was sent to the house of Israel, as their Messiah, King, Prophet, Judge and Lord. He expounded and elaborated on the Laws God gave to Moses for the Jews. He was born as a Jew, lived as a Jew and upheld the Jewish traditions until his death. He lived and fulfilled the law!

Galatians 4:4 But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,

Galatians 4:5 to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.

The purpose of Jesus coming as a man and as a Jew was to fulfill the law (which no man before him could fulfill), meet its righteous requirements and deliver from the law those who were under the law (the Jews, unto whom God gave his law). If he had failed to fulfill the law he would have been deemed unfit to redeem his people from living under the law.

St. Matthew 5:17 “Don’t think that I came to destroy the law or the prophets. I didn’t come to destroy, but to fulfill.

St. Matthew 5:18 For most certainly, I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not even one smallest letter or one tiny pen stroke shall in any way pass away from the law, until all things are accomplished.

When he had fulfilled the law and died as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of the people, he abolished the law and redeemed the people from under the law, having fulfilled the law. In his life he fulfilled the law, and by his death he abolished the law!

Ephesians 2:14 for he is our peace, who made both one, and broke down the middle wall of partition,

Ephesians 2:15 having abolished in the flesh the hostility, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man of the two, making peace;

Colossians 2:13 you were dead through your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh. He made you alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,

Colossians 2:14 wiping out the handwriting in ordinances which was against us; and he has taken it out of the way, nailing it to the cross;

Romans 7:1 or don’t you know, brothers (for I speak to men who know the law), that the law has dominion over a man for as long as he lives?

Romans 7:2 for the woman that has a husband is bound by law to the husband while he lives, but if the husband dies, she is discharged from the law of the husband.

Romans 7:3 so then if, while the husband lives, she is joined to another man, she would be called an adulteress. But if the husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is no adulteress, though she is joined to another man.

Romans 7:4 Therefore, my brothers, you also were made dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you would be joined to another, to him who was raised from the dead, that we might produce fruit to God.

Romans 7:5 for when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were through the law, worked in our members to bring out fruit to death.

Romans 7:6 But now we have been discharged from the law, having died to that in which we were held; so that we serve in newness of the spirit, and not in oldness of the letter.

Did you notice verse 6? But now we have been discharged from the law (of Moses), discharged from all aspects of the Law of Moses (including the laws of tithing). We have died to the law, by the death of Christ! We are no longer under the law. Hallelujah!!! No commandment or ordinance of the Mosaic Law, including the laws of tithing is mandatory for the New Testament believer in Christ.

Whoever tries to keep any aspect of the laws of Moses, including the law of tithing is under a curse. Whoever does that has fallen from Grace!

Galatians 3:10 for as many as are of the works of the law are under a curse. For it is written, “Cursed is everyone who doesn’t continue in all things that are written in the book of the law, to do them.”

Galatians 3:11 Now that no man is justified by the law before God is evident, for, “The righteous will live by faith.”

Galatians 3:12 the law is not of faith, but, “The man who does them will live by them.”

Galatians 3:13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us. For it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree,”

Galatians 3:14 that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Christ Jesus; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Galatians 5:4 you are alienated from Christ, you who desire to be justified by the law. You have fallen away from grace.

The entirety of the laws of Moses (over 600 laws), including the laws of tithing, firstfruits, offering of sacrificial animals, laws of vows, etc,  are all obsolete, expired, null and void and therefore of no effect on the New Testament believer. Hallelujah!!! Tithing is no longer a law or a commandment requiring obedience for fear of a curse. You are free from the law of tithing and so, no one, not even God can curse you if you don’t pay tithe. Malachi 3:8-12 is no longer valid and cannot be used to threaten a New Testament believer, like any other part of the Mosaic Law, because we are not under the law. The law has no jurisdiction over us.

In conclusion, tithing as a law, like all other parts of the abolished Mosaic Law, is no longer applicable to the New Testament believer in Christ. Giving to support the cause of God and to support God’s servants is voluntary and according to what each person determines in his mind to give to God. Giving is to be done voluntarily, cheerfully, and abundantly, according to what a man has and chooses to give.

2 Corinthians 8:7 But as you abound in everything, in faith, utterance, knowledge, all earnestness, and in your love to us, see that you also abound in this grace.

2 Corinthians 8:8 I speak not by way of commandment, but as proving through the earnestness of others the sincerity also of your love.

2 Corinthians 8:12 for if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what you have, not according to what you don’t have.

2 Corinthians 8:13 for this is not that others may be eased and you distressed,

2 Corinthians 9:6 Remember this: he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly. He who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.

2 Corinthians 9:7 Let each man give according as he has determined in his heart; not grudgingly, or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver.

2 Corinthians 9:8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, that you, always having all sufficiency in everything, may abound to every good work.

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How To Identify False Ministers Of The Gospel

People are tired of hearing this perverted gospel we preach that’s lacking in love and holiness, and that’s full of prosperity and high-class living for pastors and General Overseers, while church members are suffering. It’s a gospel of deception! Churches have become personal and family businesses and dens of thieves, rather than places of prayer and worship. People have forgotten the real message of the cross that goes with love and holiness.

John 15:13 “Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends”.

That’s the original Apostolic Gospel, where the leaders of the church were not living like kings and lords, while majority of the people were going hungry. The problem with Christianity is the leaders first, who are leading the people astray. The second problem is the ignorant and foolish people who are blindly following their greedy leaders!

For false christs and false prophets will arise, and they will show great signs and wonders so as to deceive and lead astray, if possible, even the elect (God’s chosen ones). Our Lord warned us of false christs (anointed ones) and false prophets who will arise in the last days, with the sole intent to deceive and lead God’s people astray.

If you don’t know how to identify these messengers of Satan transforming themselves as apostles of Christ, you will be led astray, deceived and suffer shipwreck in your faith! The good thing is that, we’ve been forewarned in the Scriptures, by our Lord and his apostles, to beware of these wolves masquerading in sheep clothing. So, if we fail to take the warning of scripture, we have only ourselves to blame. No one can claim ignorance, because we’ve been forewarned.

What has confused simple-minded believers is how somebody can be anointed, heal the sick, prophesy, do mighty signs and wonders in Jesus name, and still be false and satanic.

Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons, and in your name perform many miracles?’

Matthew 7:23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness.’

Think of it!

Someone can call Jesus, ‘ Lord’, prophesy in Jesus’ name, cast out devils in Jesus’ name, perform many miracles in Jesus’ name, and will still be told by Jesus at the end that he was a worker of iniquity. That’s pretty serious, isn’t it!

Friends, let me just run ahead of myself and say it now. Prophecy, signs and wonders, miracles, etc, are not the evidence to use in judging whether a man of God is genuine or not. None of the gifts of the Holy Spirit can be used as evidence of the genuineness of a believer or a man of God.

Not speaking in tongues! Not interpretation of tongues! Not prophecy! Not gifts of healing! Not gift of miracle!

Don’t forget this. Any of the gifts of the Holy Spirit can be counterfeited! Satan can perform miracles and signs and wonders.

Revelation 16:13 and I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

Revelation 16:14 for they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.

Did you see it there in verse 14? The spirits of devils working miracles!

Revelation 13:11 then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb and he spoke as a dragon.

Revelation 13:12 He exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence. And he makes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose fatal wound was healed.

Revelation 13:13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down out of heaven to the earth in the presence of men.

Revelation 13:14 and he deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs which it was given him to perform in the presence of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who had the wound of the sword and has come to life.

Revelation 13:15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.

Remember how the magicians in Egypt were able to counterfeit the signs and wonders the Holy Spirit performed through Moses? So, all the gifts of the Holy Spirit can be counterfeited by Satan. Don’t ever forget that! Also, remember that the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Romans 11:29 for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

What this means is that, someone who started genuinely may have a genuine anointing and calling, and be genuinely gifted by God, may then fall away from grace, depart from God and still be operating those gifts of the Holy Spirit!

Hear me, folks! God does not take away his gifts from anybody, once he’s released them! Even if we misuse the gifts, he doesn’t recall them. He will judge how we use the gifts at the end, not here. So, stop asking, “If he’s false, why is God blessing him?” or “why is God doing signs and wonders with him?” Or “why is God manifesting in his ministry?”

Remember that Lucifer who once was the bright covering cherub in heaven fell from grace to become Satan (God’s adversary), yet he still retains the powers and gifts he had from God. God didn’t take the gifts and powers from him. So, don’t you ever judge a person or a man of God by his gifts and anointing, unless you want to be deceived.

So then, how are we to judge a person or a man God? How do we know if a minister is genuine or not? How do we test the spirits controlling ministers?

We need to know how to test them because the Bible says, “test or try all spirits!”

1 John 4:1Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Matthew 7:16 You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they?

Matthew 7:17 So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit.

Matthew 7:18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.

Matthew 7:19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

Matthew 7:20 So then, you will know them by their fruits.

Did you get it? You identify the genuineness of a minister of God by their fruits, not by their gifts and anointing. Gifts and anointing can be counterfeited. Gifts and anointing can remain intact even when a man has fallen away from grace. However, fruits cannot be counterfeited!

You can’t successfully fake the fruits of the Spirit!

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

Galatians 5:23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

So, watch out for the fruits emanating from the life and ministry of the man. If his character does not reflect the character of Christ, he’s not of Christ. He may perform all the signs and wonders in this world. He may even accurately prophesy about the colour of pant you wore yesterday, or the amount of money you have in your account; if he doesn’t portray the character of Christ, he’s not of Christ!

2 Peter 2:1But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves.

2 Peter 2:2 Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned;

2 Peter 2:3 and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

One other sign of false ministers is that, they secretly introduce destructive heresies into the church. Think about this! False ministers have no regard for the word of God. They can manipulate it anyhow just to achieve their selfish ambition.

 Acts 20:28 Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.

Acts 20:29 I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock;

Acts 20:30 and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them.

 False ministers will pervert the true Gospel of Christ with impunity, just to draw men after themselves! All they care about is the crowd, the money, the fame and the popularity of a mega ministry! They don’t care about the truth of the Gospel or the salvation of souls!

John 8:47 He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God.”

Why are they not hearing God’s Word? Because they are NOT of God!

1 John 3:10 By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother.

Do you see the scandal, immorality, hatred and competition among these ministers? It simply means they are NOT of God!

2 Peter 2:1But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves.

Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient and worthless for any good deed.

These false ministers deny our Lord by their despicable deeds, though they profess to know him. They’re disobedient and rebellious to the Lord and his word!

John 14:15 If you love me, you will keep my commandments.

They claim to love him, but disregard his word and break his commandments with impunity!

2 Peter 2:2 Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned;

The name of Christ is being blasphemed among the unbelievers because of the scandalous lives and lifestyles of these false ministers!

2 Peter 2:3 and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

Greed and covetousness are the pillars of their ministry. It’s all about prosperity and more prosperity, for themselves and their families!

Philippians 3:18 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:

Philippians 3:19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their mind on earthly things.

These false ministers are in ministry for the sake of their belly. They glory in what they should be ashamed of – the size of their cathedrals, their private jets, the cost of their pulpits, etc. Their focus is on earthly things, because there is no hope of heaven for them. No wonder they want to get their reward here and now! These are enemies of the cross of Christ. They’re ashamed of the cross and the suffering it entails.

2 Peter 2:14 having eyes full of adultery and that cannot cease from sin, enticing unstable souls. They have a heart trained in covetous practices, and are accursed children.

2 Peter 2:15 They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;

2 Peter 2:18 For when they speak great swelling words of emptiness, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through lewdness, the ones who have actually escaped from those who live in error.

2 Peter 2:19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.

These guys have nothing to offer but vain jangling. They speak great swelling but empty words. No life in what they preach or teach. At best, they’re just great orators and motivational speakers. They can’t impart the true Spirit because they’re destitute of the Spirit. They promise people liberty but they themselves are slaves of corruption. False ministers love to be served and hero-worshipped as lords. They love to lord it over God’s people. They treat the congregation as though they own the church, as if it’s their personal or family business!

1 Peter 5:1Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed,

1 Peter 5:2 shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness;

1 Peter 5:3 nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.

1 Peter 5:4 And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.

 They love to lord it over God’s people and exercise autocratic control over the church, for the sake of controlling church money. Leaders are not to lord it over God’s people, but are to be worthy examples to the flock. They’re to show the people how to lead godly, humble, contented lives, focused on heavenly things!

The Acts 20:33 I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or clothes.

The Acts 20:34 You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my own needs and to the men who were with me.

The Acts 20:35 In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.

1 Timothy 4:12 Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe.

That’s Paul’s admonition to young minister Timothy. And that’s God’s expectation for all true ministers of the Gospel. Even our Lord Jesus, during his earthly ministry, did not live and  act as Lord, but behaved like a servant.

Matthew 20:25 But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men exercise authority over them.

Matthew 20: 26 It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant,

Matthew 20:27 and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave;

Matthew 20:28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.

John 13:12 So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you?

John 13:13 You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am.

John 13:14 If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.

John 13:15 For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.

These false ministers do not lead by example as humble, godly and others-centered servants of Christ.  Rather, they rule as lords over God’s heritage. They drive fleets of exotic cars, they fly in private jets, they live in lavish mansions in the most exotic parts of the world. Their children go to schools in the best universities abroad. They and their families attend hospitals overseas, while they sell olive oil, holy water, stickers and aprons to their members for healing. While they sell you stickers for protection, they’re protected and escorted by tens of armed police men and soldiers!What deception!

Meanwhile thousands of their followers cannot eat three square meal a day. Thousands of their members cannot send their children to even public schools. Thousands of their members die from treatable illnesses because they cannot afford hospital fees. How can these brood of vipers escape the damnation of hell?

Ezekiel 34:1Then the word of the Lord came to me saying,

Ezekiel 34:2 Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel. Prophesy and say to those shepherds, ‘Thus says the Lord God, Woe, shepherds of Israel who have been feeding themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flock?

Ezekiel 34:3 You eat the fat and clothe yourselves with the wool, you slaughter the fat sheep without feeding the flock.

Ezekiel 34:4 Those who are sickly you have not strengthened, the diseased you have not healed, the broken you have not bound up, the scattered you have not brought back, nor have you sought for the lost; but with force and with severity you have dominated them.

Ezekiel 34:5 And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they became meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered.

That’s what the ferocious, greedy wolves clothed in the garment of shepherds have done to God’s flock. They’ve devoured and fleeced the flock and have made themselves fat at the expense of God’s suffering, poor people, who continue to water them with tithes, first fruits, dangerous seeds and all manner of evil contraptions.

A good shepherd will so love and care for the sheep in his flock that he will defend them against any form of danger, to the extent of putting his life at risk for the sheep.

St. John 10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

St. John 10:12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.

St. John 10:13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.

These false ministers are nothing but hirelings, who have no iota of care or love for the sheep of God! Theirs is to fleece and exploit the sheep to their maximum advantage and benefit.

1 Samuel 17:34 But David said to Saul, your servant was tending his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and took a lamb from the flock,

1 Samuel 17:35 I went out after him and attacked him, and rescued it from his mouth ; and when he rose up against me, I seized him by his beard and struck him and killed him.

David was an example of a true shepherd, who was ready to lay down his life for his flock, by taking on a lion and a bear, in defense of his flock. That’s the heart of a true shepherd! He will leave 99 sheep in a safe shelter and go after one missing sheep, until he finds it. How many of these hirelings feeding fat on God’s flock are ready to go after one missing lamb until they find him or her? If you’re not a big tither, forget it. They won’t even know where you live or whether you come to church or not. These are hirelings, interested only in money!

The Acts 4:33 And with great power the apostles were giving testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and abundant grace was upon them all.

The Acts 4:34 For there was not a needy person among them, for all who were owners of land or houses would sell them and bring the proceeds of the sales.

The Acts 4:35 and lay them at the apostles’ feet, and they would be distributed to each as any had need.

In the early apostolic church, no one lacked anything, because the Apostles ensured church resources and money were not just used by the leaders and the General Overseers, to live like lords and kings, while the flocks suffered lack and deprivation. Rather, money brought to the apostles were distributed to meet real needs in the entire church. The apostles displayed the example of Christ by acting as servant-leaders, by serving others first, before taking care of their own needs. That’s the heart of a true shepherd. That’s the heart of a true spiritual father or mother. You can’t call yourself a true daddy or mummy and watch your kids suffer hunger or want, while you have the resources. A true daddy or mummy will starve themselves, if need be, just to make sure their kids eat. So, if you’re calling someone your daddy or mummy, and you’re there dying in hunger while your daddy or mummy in the Lord is living like a Lord, you’re a big fool.

If you’re gathering your tithes and first fruits and dangerous seeds and giving them to a man who’s flying a private jet and competing with the Bill Gates of this world in wealth, while you can’t even buy a bicycle or pay your house rent,  you deserve to be admitted into a psychiatric hospital!

Brethren, if your man of God or General Overseer is performing signs and wonders on an hourly basis, but is not displaying the fruits of the Spirit and the character of Christ and living a humble, exemplary life and placing the needs of the flock before his own, you’re dealing with a false minister of the Gospel.

Thank you so much for visiting this blog. We appreciate you and the precious time you spared to read through this lengthy post. If you were blessed by this message, kindly like, comment and share to others (with due acknowledgement of the source). You can also follow us to have subsequent posts sent directly to you through your email. God bless you abundantly in Jesus name! Amen!

There Is Only One True Gospel!

Galatians 1:6 I marvel that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ to another gospel:

Galatians 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

Galatians 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed.

Galatians 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel to you than that you have received, let him be accursed.  

The word “gospel” is a Greek word that means “good news”. It is the good news that God has made salvation from sin and death freely available to all mankind, through the sacrificial and substitutionary death of His Son Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 1:15, Romans 1:16). It is the good news that all sinners (indeed all people, for all have sinned,  Romans 3:23) can be saved from the guilt and penalty of  sin, and made right with God, by repenting of their sins and believing in Christ’s complete redemptive work at Calvary (Acts 2:37-38; Acts 16: 30-31). That is the good news! That sinners can become saints, and enemies of God can become sons and daughters of God! It’s not just good news, it’s the best news you’ll ever hear!

The Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles (the non-Jewish people) was committed to the Apostle Paul, who before his conversion to Christianity, was a great persecutor of the Church of Christ (Galatians 1:13-16; 1 Corinthians 15:9). However, the grace of God saved him and made him the Apostle to the Gentiles (1 Timothy 2:7; 2 Timothy 1:11). The Lord Jesus appeared to Paul, after his conversion, and personally taught him the substance of the Gospel he was to preach to the Gentiles (Galatians 1: 11-13). The entire mystery of the Gospel to the Gentiles was revealed to Paul by Jesus Christ himself (Ephesians 3:1-10). Paul was commissioned and sent forth by Christ, and was empowered by the Holy Spirit, to be a preacher, a teacher, an apostle, and a light to the Gentiles (1 Timothy 2:7; 2 Timothy 1:11; Galatians 2:7-10, Acts 13:47; Acts 22:21). The Apostle Paul received from the Lord, the guiding principles and ordinances of the Church, and laid the foundation and pattern for the Gentile Churches of all ages to follow (1 Corinthians 11:23; Ephesians 3:1-10; 1Corinthians 3:9-15). 

In the Acts of the Apostles and the various letters of Paul (and to a lesser degree those of the other apostles who were mainly apostles to the Jews), we find the blue print and pattern of the Church for the Gentiles. Every Gentile Church is to be built upon the doctrinal foundation of Paul’s message, and is to operate within this Apostolic blue print, if it is to meet God’s standard and approval (1 Corinthians 3:9-15).

The doctrinal foundation laid by the original Apostles of The Lord (Paul in particular, in respect to the Gentiles) is the unchangeable yardstick by which God will judge every Church in every Church age. It is the gold standard for Christianity. If we build a church according to this standard, our works will be approved and rewarded. If we build contrary to this standard, our works will be rejected and we will have no reward for our labours! We would have laboured and suffered in vain! What a sad loss that would be, to realise one spent an entire lifetime and ministry building with wood, hay and stubbles, which would be consumed with fire and destroyed! (1Corinthians 3:9-15). We are warned in scripture not to depart from the original Apostolic Faith, but to contend earnestly for it (Jude 1:3; 2 Timothy 2:2; 1 Corinthians 11:1). This warning should be taken seriously.

Satan has always wanted to pervert and corrupt the Gospel of Christ, so as to make it ineffective and deadly to mankind, like he perverted God’s Word to Eve, deceived her, and brought death to the entire human race (Genesis 3:1-8; 2 Corinthians 11:2-5). Satan has his army of false apostles, false prophets and false teachers, satanic messengers masquerading all over the place as preachers of the Gospel, who go about perverting and corrupting the right ways of The Lord (Acts 13:6-11; 2Corinthians 11:13-15; 2 Peter 2:1-22; Jude 1:4-19). These false ministers started in the time of the original Apostles of The Lord, who withstood and resisted them mightily, and never gave them room to peddle their deadly potions. Such deceitful workers of iniquity are motivated by Satan and the love of money. They do not care about the well-being of the Church or the interest of her Lord and Saviour. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing, interested only in devouring the flock of God and making disciples for themselves, and not for Christ. They are in ministry only for fame and fortune (Acts 20:29-30). True servants of God should never relent in rebuking and openly resisting such agents of darkness, as standing for the true Gospel means preaching truth as well as rebuking error!

To contend for the original Apostolic faith means to resist, counter and rebuke all deviations from the original apostolic gospel, as well as exposing all exponents of such perverted gospels. It is declaring total warfare against error! (2Timothy 4:2-3). The battle to preserve the truth and purity of the Gospel is the battle for the soul of Christianity. It is the greatest battle ever fought, and is at the fiercest stage now, in this final onslaught of the devil for the souls of men, as his end draws near. But, the true Church is assured of victory, as the gates of hell cannot prevail against her (Matthew 16:18). We shall prevail because The Lord of hosts is not just on our side, he is leading the battle, as Captain of The Lord’s hosts! Hallelujah!!!

Sometimes, a true servant of God may err from the Truth, either because of ignorance or due to undue external pressure and the desire to please men. Apollos was an example of the former (Acts 18:24-28). Such usually receive and accept the Truth readily when exposed to it. Peter is an example of those who compromise the Truth in order to please men. The fear of offending the Jewish believers who hold tenaciously to the laws of Moses made him stop eating with Gentiles, thereby trying to rebuild the middle wall of partition between the two groups that the Cross of Christ had broken down (Ephesians 2:14-16). Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles, stood up firmly to Peter, who was his senior in the faith and ministry, and rebuked Peter sharply and openly! (Galatians 2:11-17). This was necessary to preserve the Truth of the Gospel, as Peter was attempting to lead the Gentile Church to Judaism and observance of the Mosaic Law, from which the Gentiles had been excluded (Acts 15). We need men like Paul more than ever now, as perverted versions of the Gospel of Christ dominate the landscape in Christendom!

One does not need to look far into the Word of God to see how far the modern Church has fallen from the original Apostolic faith. Comparing our present day Church with the standard in the book of Acts will glaringly expose the wide gulf between the pattern Church and ourselves, in doctrinal purity, faith, power, prayerfulness, holiness, and zeal for God! Despite the glaring lack of spiritual power and holiness, some actually think that the present day Church is doing well and prospering! To harbour such thoughts in the midst of abject spiritual poverty, blindness, nakedness and wretchedness can only mean some people are grossly deluded about the state of the church! (Revelation 3:14-21).

One of the reasons the modern day Church is so far removed from the original Apostolic Church is that, we have left the original Apostolic faith, and we are preaching another gospel, which is accursed, and cannot therefore receive the blessings of God! (Galatians 1:8-10). The Gospel we are preaching may be motivational, emotionally stirring and bringing a lot financial prosperity to its peddlers, but it is devoid of the power of God to truly save from sin and worldliness and perform the greater works Christ promised to the Church (John 14:12; Mark 16:15-20).

We need to go back to the original blue print for the Church. We need to return to the original Apostolic foundation. We need a restoration of the one true Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is only the pure, unadulterated Gospel that carries the inherent power of God to save, deliver, and transform lives (Romans 1:16). True revival will only come to the Church when we repent and return to the original Gospel. We have mixed law and grace and produced a hybrid Gospel that has robbed the law of its terror and grace of its power. This hybrid Gospel is sterile, impotent and deadly! The Holy Spirit will only anoint the true Gospel that glorifies Christ. This is why we must return to the original Apostolic faith!

That is the purpose of this blog- to correct the erroneous beliefs, practices and doctrines in the Church, and guide her back to the original Apostolic faith. A return to scriptural Truth is the starting point for the revival the Church needs so badly. Once we rediscover the truth of the original Apostolic gospel, we can truly return to God with all our hearts, forsake our wicked ways, and petition God for healing and revival. God will hear from heaven, and answer us, like of old!

2 Chronicles 7:13 If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people;

2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

God bless you, as you follow us on this blog and join in praying for the revival and restoration of the Church of Jesus back to her position of power and glory.

Thank you so much for visiting this blog. We appreciate you and the precious time you spared to read through this lengthy post. If you were blessed by this message, kindly like, comment and share to others (with due acknowledgement of the source). You can also follow us to have subsequent posts sent directly to you through your email. God bless you abundantly in Jesus name! Amen!

Rightly Dividing The Word Of Truth—Distinguishing The Ages And Various Dispensational Covenants To Harmonise The Scriptures

2 Timothy 2:15 Study to show yourself approved to God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (AKJV).

The Bible contains the written word of God, which includes, among other things, God’s plan of salvation for mankind. God’s redemptive plan has spanned several thousands of years, starting from the very beginning of man’s existence in Eden. It has involved several dispensations and covenants with humanity, which in various ways foreshadowed the final work of salvation manifested in Christ’s redemptive work at Calvary. Every covenant God made with the human race before the coming of Christ pointed towards Calvary, and every covenant after Christ points back to Calvary. Christ’s redemptive work at Calvary is thus the centerpiece of God’s salvation plan.

The various covenants God has made with mankind do not apply equally to all ages and all times. Some (or parts of them) have served their purpose and are now obsolete and expired, while some are still extant and relevant. The greatest challenge confronting any student of Scripture is being able to distinguish the expired covenants (or their expired portions) from the extant ones, as well as the various covenants meant for different dispensations. Failure to understand God’s dispensational dealings with mankind and the obsolete nature of some word of God (because the covenants under which the words were given have expired) has created a lot of confusion among Christians. Not every word of God written in the Bible is still extant, relevant and to be observed in the current dispensation we’re in! Confusion in interpreting and applying Scriptures usually arises because people fail to distinguish the various ages/dispensations and the covenants that are unique to them. Because of this, a covenant meant for one age/dispensation can be wrongly applied to another age/dispensation, creating untold confusion thereby. As St. Augustine of Hippo, one of the early church fathers and revered theologian noted, “distinguish the ages and the Scriptures harmonise“. There is no conflict within the Scriptures and no disharmony in the Word of God. Any apparent confusion arises from people’s failure to rightly divide the word of truth along dispensational lines.

Ephesians 3:1 For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles,

Ephesians 3:2 If you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:

Ephesians 3:3 How that by revelation he made known to me the mystery; (as I wrote before in few words,

Ephesians 3:4 Whereby, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)

Ephesians 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it is now revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;

Ephesians 3:6 That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:

Ephesians 3:7 Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effectual working of his power.

Colossians 1:24 Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:

Colossians 1:25 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God;

Colossians 1:26 Even the mystery which has been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints:

Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Colossians 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: (AKJV).

Before we go any further, let’s briefly outline the various dispensational ages since creation of mankind, and the various covenants governing them. This will help us understand where exactly we are presently in God’s plan, and which covenants are still binding upon us. Understanding these simple facts will greatly reduce confusion and enhance correct interpretation and application of Scriptures. The dispensations that will be discussed here include those of innocence, conscience, human government, promise, the law, gospel (grace) and regeneration (kingdom age). These dispensations span from the creation of man to the second coming of Christ and the establishment of his kingdom on earth.

The first dispensation following the creation of man was that of innocence. It spanned from mankind’s creation to the fall. There was a covenant between God and humanity during this period of probation, whereby mankind was required to abstain from eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil in order to live eternally in bliss in paradise. Death was the penalty for disobedience. Adam and Eve disobeyed God and brought sickness, suffering and death upon the human race. Because Adam’s sin has been transmitted to every of his descendant, we all fell in Adam, and we all still suffer the consequences of Adam’s fall. The penalty for violating that covenant still applies to all of humanity today, and will continue till the regeneration or the kingdom age.

Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Genesis 2:8 And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

Genesis 2:9 And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the middle of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:15 And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

Genesis 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat:

Genesis 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it: for in the day that you eat thereof you shall surely die.

Genesis 2:18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.

Genesis 2:19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them: and whatever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

Genesis 2:20 And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.

Genesis 2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;

Genesis 2:22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her to the man.

Genesis 2:23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

Genesis 2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall join to his wife: and they shall be one flesh.

Genesis 2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed (AKJV).

The next dispensation following the fall was that of conscience. After the fall, mankind now had experiential knowledge of good and evil embedded in their conscience. Humanity now possessed the ability to do both good and evil, having lost our innocence in the fall. The law of conscience was now our guide. Knowing what constitutes good and evil innately, humanity was now at liberty to choose to do either. However, knowing something to be evil is not sufficient to keep men from indulging in it. The power of sin in the human heart made people to do evil even when they wanted to do good, as doing good now depended solely on the willpower, which has been significantly weakened by the sinful nature. This age ended with chaos, as unprecedented violence and wickedness engulfed humanity, forcing God to wipe out the entire human race (less Noah and his family) with the flood of judgement. The great deluge ended the age of conscience as the sole ruler of mankind.

Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, Yes, has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

Genesis 3:2 And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

Genesis 3:3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.

Genesis 3:4 And the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die:

Genesis 3:5 For God does know that in the day you eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

Genesis 3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also to her husband with her; and he did eat.

Genesis 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

Genesis 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

Genesis 3:9 And the LORD God called to Adam, and said to him, Where are you?

Genesis 3:10 And he said, I heard your voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.

Genesis 3:11 And he said, Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded you that you should not eat?

Genesis 3:12 And the man said, The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.

Genesis 3:13 And the LORD God said to the woman, What is this that you have done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

Genesis 3:14 And the LORD God said to the serpent, Because you have done this, you are cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; on your belly shall you go, and dust shall you eat all the days of your life:

Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.

Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in sorrow you shall bring forth children; and your desire shall be to your husband, and he shall rule over you.

Genesis 3:17 And to Adam he said, Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree, of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it: cursed is the ground for your sake; in sorrow shall you eat of it all the days of your life;

Genesis 3:18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to you; and you shall eat the herb of the field;

Genesis 3:19 In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread, till you return to the ground; for out of it were you taken: for dust you are, and to dust shall you return.

Genesis 3:20 And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.

Genesis 3:21 To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

Genesis 3:22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

Genesis 3:23 Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from from where he was taken.

Genesis 3:24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life (AKJV).

Romans 7:15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.

Romans 7:16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.

Romans 7:17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me.

Romans 7:18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.

Romans 7:19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do —this I keep on doing.

Romans 7:20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

Romans 7:21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me.

Romans 7:22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law;

Romans 7:23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.

Romans 7:24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? (NIV).

Romans 2:12 All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law.

Romans 2:13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.

Romans 2:14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law.

Romans 2:15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.)

Romans 2:16 This will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares (NIV).

After the age of conscience came the dispensation of human government. This started after the flood, with God recognising the need for human agents in administration, to punish law offenders and deter evil doers from inducing another total destruction of the race. Human governments would now be put in place to encourage and promote good behaviour, while adequately punishing evil doers, to serve as a deterrent to crime. Human societies would now be governed by law and order.

Genesis 8:20 And Noah built an altar to the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

Genesis 8:21 And the LORD smelled a sweet smell; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.

Genesis 8:22 While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

Genesis 9:1 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.

Genesis 9:2 And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be on every beast of the earth, and on every fowl of the air, on all that moves on the earth, and on all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.

Genesis 9:3 Every moving thing that lives shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.

Genesis 9:4 But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall you not eat.

Genesis 9:5 And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man.

Genesis 9:6 Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

Genesis 9:7 And you, be you fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein.

Genesis 9:8 And God spoke to Noah, and to his sons with him, saying,

Genesis 9:9 And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;

Genesis 9:10 And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.

Genesis 9:11 And I will establish my covenant with you, neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.

Genesis 9:12 And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:

Genesis 9:13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.

Genesis 9:14 And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:

Genesis 9:15 And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.

Genesis 9:16 And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look on it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.

Genesis 9:17 And God said to Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth (AKJV).

Within the dispensation of human government, God made a covenant of promise with Abraham, promising to make him a father of many nations and to bless the whole world through his Seed—Jesus Christ. That covenant of faith and grace is one that, with little modification, has endured till date, though it was temporarily suspended during the subsequent covenant and dispensation of the law which followed it.

Genesis 12:1 Now the LORD had said to Abram, Get you out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you:

Genesis 12:2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing:

Genesis 12:3 And I will bless them that bless you, and curse him that curses you: and in you shall all families of the earth be blessed.

Genesis 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said to him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be you perfect.

Genesis 17:2 And I will make my covenant between me and you, and will multiply you exceedingly.

Genesis 17:3 And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying,

Genesis 17:4 As for me, behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be a father of many nations.

Genesis 17:5 Neither shall your name any more be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made you.

Genesis 17:6 And I will make you exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come out of you.

Genesis 17:7 And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your seed after you in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God to you, and to your seed after you.

Genesis 17:8 And I will give to you, and to your seed after you, the land wherein you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.

Genesis 17:9 And God said to Abraham, You shall keep my covenant therefore, you, and your seed after you in their generations.

Genesis 17:10 This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your seed after you; Every man child among you shall be circumcised.

Genesis 17:11 And you shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant between me and you.

Genesis 17:12 And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of your seed.

Genesis 17:13 He that is born in your house, and he that is bought with your money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.

Genesis 17:14 And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant.

Genesis 17:15 And God said to Abraham, As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be.

Genesis 17:16 And I will bless her, and give you a son also of her: yes, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her (AKJV).

About 430 years after God made the covenant of promise with Abraham, Jehovah made a special covenant of the law with the nation of Israel on Mount Sinai (Horeb), wherein God promised to be Israel’s God and benefactor, as long as they kept and observed his special laws which he gave to them through Moses. Strict obedience to the Mosaic laws was necessary to secure God’s favour for the Jews under this covenant. The dispensation of the law was brought to an end by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Deuteronomy 5:1 Moses summoned all Israel and said: Hear, Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them.

Deuteronomy 5:2 The LORD our God made a covenant with us at Horeb.

Deuteronomy 5:3 It was not with our ancestors that the LORD made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today.

Deuteronomy 5:4 The LORD spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain.

Deuteronomy 5:5 (At that time I stood between the LORD and you to declare to you the word of the LORD, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) And he said:

Deuteronomy 5:6 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.

Deuteronomy 5:7 “You shall have no other gods before me.

Deuteronomy 5:8 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.

Deuteronomy 5:9 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,

Deuteronomy 5:10 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

Deuteronomy 5:11 “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.

Deuteronomy 5:12 “Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the LORD your God has commanded you.

Deuteronomy 5:13 Six days you shall labor and do all your work,

Deuteronomy 5:14 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, so that your male and female servants may rest, as you do.

Deuteronomy 5:15 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the LORD your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the LORD your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.

Deuteronomy 5:16 “Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the LORD your God is giving you.

Deuteronomy 5:17 “You shall not murder.

Deuteronomy 5:18 “You shall not commit adultery.

Deuteronomy 5:19 “You shall not steal.

Deuteronomy 5:20 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.

Deuteronomy 5:21 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. You shall not set your desire on your neighbor’s house or land, his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

Deuteronomy 5:22 These are the commandments the LORD proclaimed in a loud voice to your whole assembly there on the mountain from out of the fire, the cloud and the deep darkness; and he added nothing more. Then he wrote them on two stone tablets and gave them to me.

Deuteronomy 5:23 When you heard the voice out of the darkness, while the mountain was ablaze with fire, all the leaders of your tribes and your elders came to me.

Deuteronomy 5:24 And you said, “The LORD our God has shown us his glory and his majesty, and we have heard his voice from the fire. Today we have seen that a person can live even if God speaks with them.

Deuteronomy 5:25 But now, why should we die? This great fire will consume us, and we will die if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any longer.

Deuteronomy 5:26 For what mortal has ever heard the voice of the living God speaking out of fire, as we have, and survived?

Deuteronomy 5:27 Go near and listen to all that the LORD our God says. Then tell us whatever the LORD our God tells you. We will listen and obey.”

Deuteronomy 5:28 The LORD heard you when you spoke to me, and the LORD said to me, “I have heard what this people said to you. Everything they said was good.

Deuteronomy 5:29 Oh, that their hearts would be inclined to fear me and keep all my commands always, so that it might go well with them and their children forever!

Deuteronomy 5:30 “Go, tell them to return to their tents.

Deuteronomy 5:31 But you stay here with me so that I may give you all the commands, decrees and laws you are to teach them to follow in the land I am giving them to possess.”

Deuteronomy 5:32 So be careful to do what the LORD your God has commanded you; do not turn aside to the right or to the left.

Deuteronomy 5:33 Walk in obedience to all that the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess (NIV).

The Mosaic covenant was abolished by Christ’s death, with a new covenant of grace instituted to take its place. This new covenant of grace in Christ Jesus was for the whole of mankind and not just for the Jews, as was the case with the Mosaic covenant. God’s salvation was now available to all of humanity as a free gift of grace through Jesus Christ, the propitiation for our sins. The covenant of grace in Christ was actually a resumption and continuation of the Abrahamic covenant of Promise, with Christ as the Seed of Abraham through whom the whole world would be blessed.

Hebrews 8:1 Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;

Hebrews 8:2 A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.

Hebrews 8:3 For every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: why it is of necessity that this man have somewhat also to offer.

Hebrews 8:4 For if he were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law:

Hebrews 8:5 Who serve to the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, said he, that you make all things according to the pattern showed to you in the mount.

Hebrews 8:6 But now has he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises.

Hebrews 8:7 For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.

Hebrews 8:8 For finding fault with them, he said, Behold, the days come, said the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

Hebrews 8:9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, said the Lord.

Hebrews 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, said the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:

Hebrews 8:11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.

Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.

Hebrews 8:13 In that he said, A new covenant, he has made the first old. Now that which decays and waxes old is ready to vanish away (AKJV).

Hebrews 12:24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaks better things that that of Abel (AKJV).

Matthew 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.

Matthew 26:27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink you all of it;

Matthew 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins (AKJV).

Finally, there’s the future age of regeneration or the kingdom age, which would be established during the millennial reign of Christ, during which Christ and the resurrected saints would establish a rule of righteousness on earth. During this period, all the effects of the fall would be undone, and there would be peace and righteousness on earth, with no more wars and violence. Even wild animals would become tame and none would hurt or destroy another. Paradise would be restored on earth. That’s when the meek would inherit the earth, as promised in the Scriptures.

Matthew 19:27 Then answered Peter and said to him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed you; what shall we have therefore?

Matthew 19:28 And Jesus said to them, Truly I say to you, That you which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, you also shall sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Matthew 19:29 And every one that has forsaken houses, or brothers, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name’s sake, shall receive an hundred times, and shall inherit everlasting life.

Matthew 19:30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first (AKJV).

Isaiah 11:1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

Isaiah 11:2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;

Isaiah 11:3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

Isaiah 11:4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.

Isaiah 11:5 And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.

Isaiah 11:6 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatted calf together; and a little child shall lead them.

Isaiah 11:7 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

Isaiah 11:8 And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.

Isaiah 11:9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

Isaiah 11:10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious (AKJV).

Revelation 2:26 And he that overcomes, and keeps my works to the end, to him will I give power over the nations:

Revelation 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father (AKJV).

Isaiah 2:1 The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

Isaiah 2:2 And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow to it.

Isaiah 2:3 And many people shall go and say, Come you, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

Isaiah 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

Isaiah 2:5 O house of Jacob, come you, and let us walk in the light of the LORD (AKJV).

Isaiah 65:17 For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

Isaiah 65:18 But be you glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy.

Isaiah 65:19 And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying.

Isaiah 65:20 There shall be no more there an infant of days, nor an old man that has not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed.

Isaiah 65:21 And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them.

Isaiah 65:22 They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and my elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.

Isaiah 65:23 They shall not labor in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the LORD, and their offspring with them.

Isaiah 65:24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.

Isaiah 65:25 The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, said the LORD (AKJV).

Having briefly outlined the various dispensational ages and the covenants regulating them, it’s important to highlight some key points here. Most of the terms of each covenant are carried or absorbed into the one succeeding it, with minor modifications and some additions. For instance, the death penalty for sin under the Adamic covenant of innocence, as well as sufferings and sicknesses that followed violation of that covenant, are still being experienced up till today, and are still operational even under the covenant of grace in Christ—people (including Christians) are still required to labour before they eat, and women still pass through labour pains before delivery (including born-again women). Conscience still guides us, and is taken into account by God in judgement of individuals, though it can be seared and become deadened or insensitive to sin, by continuous wilful sinning. Human governments still operate to ensure law and order and to deter crime. They are to be obeyed as God’s ministers of righteousness. The promise of salvation by faith made to Abraham is fulfilled in Christ and is being enjoyed by all believers today. The most notable exception is the Mosaic covenant which was abolished almost in its entirety (with only a few components absorbed into the new covenant of grace), and is no longer binding on God’s people. It must be remembered that the Mosaic covenant, in the first place, was a narrow covenant between just Israel and God, and did not involve the rest of humanity ab initio. It wasn’t a universal or an everlasting covenant like all the others before and after it.

To divide the word of truth rightly, we need to carefully identify which dispensation a particular word of God refers or applies to, so as not to translocate what was meant specifically for one dispensation or covenant to another one. Though some word of God are universal and apply to all dispensations and covenants, some are specific to particular dispensations, and cannot be applied across board to others. For instance, though the Noahic covenant is a universal and everlasting covenant of grace, Noah’s sacrifice of animals for offering, as well as his being forbidden to eat certain unclean animals, are not applicable to us today. These portions of the Noahic covenant are obsolete and expired, though the other parts remain extant. Also, although the Abrahamic covenant is still valid (being continued by Christ, Abraham’s Seed), some portions of it are no longer valid. Circumcision of male infants was a key component of the Abrahamic covenant (in fact, it was the seal of that covenant). Any male descendant of Abraham who was not circumcised was to be cut off from among his people. Now, in Christ, circumcision of the foreskin is no longer a mandatory religious requirement.

Some promises in the Scriptures were made to particular individuals and have been fulfilled. Such promises do not necessarily apply to all persons and cannot be so stretched, though we can learn important lessons about God’s faithfulness from such. God’s individual covenant with David or Phinehas, for instance, cannot be applied to all men, but we learn from such covenants how God faithfully rewards fidelity to him and zeal for his word. Similarly, some divine promises are for the future kingdom age, and cannot be applied to our present age. For instance, the promise of not dying physically, of a violence-free world and obliteration of all the effects of the fall can only apply in the kingdom age. The promise of believers or the meek inheriting the earth and ruling in it is also for the kingdom age, not now.

In conclusion, rightly dividing the word of truth entails having a global, dispensational view of the Scriptures and of the plan of salvation. It entails understanding the various dispensations/ages and the promises unique to each, while acknowledging what’s universal for all ages. It also requires separating promises specific for certain individuals from general ones meant for all believers. Knowing what has expired in each dispensational covenant, and what is still extant and relevant is also key to rightly dividing the word of truth. Some covenants, like the Adamic, Noahic and Abrahamic covenants are everlasting, spanning many dispensations, and are still operational, with minor modifications. The Mosaic covenant, however, was a temporary stopgap measure that has expired and has been abolished. It was only intended to administer God’s people until the promised Seed of Abraham (Christ) would come to fulfil the Abrahamic covenant. Finally, reading each passage of the Bible in context, and making effort to locate its rightful place in the plan of salvation is necessary to ensure a balanced view of the Scriptures, in order to divide the word of truth aright. Every word of God is truth, but not all truth of Scriptures are current, as some truths have expired, while others are futuristic. Thus, only by rightly dividing the Scriptures can we know the present truth and be firmly established in it!

2 Peter 1:12 Why I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though you know them, and be established in the present truth (AKJV).

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Rightly Dividing The Word Of Truth—Distinguishing The Ages And Various Dispensational Covenants To Harmonise The Scriptures

2 Timothy 2:15 Study to show yourself approved to God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (AKJV).

The Bible contains the written word of God, which includes, among other things, God’s plan of salvation for mankind. God’s redemptive plan has spanned several thousands of years, starting from the very beginning of man’s existence in Eden. It has involved several dispensations and covenants with humanity, which in various ways foreshadowed the final work of salvation manifested in Christ’s redemptive work at Calvary. Every covenant God made with the human race before the coming of Christ pointed towards Calvary, and every covenant after Christ points back to Calvary. Christ’s redemptive work at Calvary is thus the centerpiece of God’s salvation plan.

The various covenants God has made with mankind do not apply equally to all ages and all times. Some (or parts of them) have served their purpose and are now obsolete and expired, while some are still extant and relevant. The greatest challenge confronting any student of Scripture is being able to distinguish the expired covenants (or their expired portions) from the extant ones, as well as the various covenants meant for different dispensations. Failure to understand God’s dispensational dealings with mankind and the obsolete nature of some word of God (because the covenants under which the words were given have expired) has created a lot of confusion among Christians. Not every word of God written in the Bible is still extant, relevant and to be observed in the current dispensation we’re in! Confusion in interpreting and applying Scriptures usually arises because people fail to distinguish the various ages/dispensations and the covenants that are unique to them. Because of this, a covenant meant for one age/dispensation can be wrongly applied to another age/dispensation, creating untold confusion thereby. As St. Augustine of Hippo, one of the early church fathers and revered theologian noted, “distinguish the ages and the Scriptures harmonise“. There is no conflict within the Scriptures and no disharmony in the Word of God. Any apparent confusion arises from people’s failure to rightly divide the word of truth along dispensational lines.

Ephesians 3:1 For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles,

Ephesians 3:2 If you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:

Ephesians 3:3 How that by revelation he made known to me the mystery; (as I wrote before in few words,

Ephesians 3:4 Whereby, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)

Ephesians 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it is now revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;

Ephesians 3:6 That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:

Ephesians 3:7 Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effectual working of his power.

Colossians 1:24 Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:

Colossians 1:25 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God;

Colossians 1:26 Even the mystery which has been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints:

Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Colossians 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: (AKJV).

Before we go any further, let’s briefly outline the various dispensational ages since creation of mankind, and the various covenants governing them. This will help us understand where exactly we are presently in God’s plan, and which covenants are still binding upon us. Understanding these simple facts will greatly reduce confusion and enhance correct interpretation and application of Scriptures. The dispensations that will be discussed here include those of innocence, conscience, human government, promise, the law, gospel (grace) and regeneration (kingdom age). These dispensations span from the creation of man to the second coming of Christ and the establishment of his kingdom on earth.

The first dispensation following the creation of man was that of innocence. It spanned from mankind’s creation to the fall. There was a covenant between God and humanity during this period of probation, whereby mankind was required to abstain from eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil in order to live eternally in bliss in paradise. Death was the penalty for disobedience. Adam and Eve disobeyed God and brought sickness, suffering and death upon the human race. Because Adam’s sin has been transmitted to every of his descendant, we all fell in Adam, and we all still suffer the consequences of Adam’s fall. The penalty for violating that covenant still applies to all of humanity today, and will continue till the regeneration or the kingdom age.

Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Genesis 2:8 And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

Genesis 2:9 And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the middle of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:15 And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

Genesis 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat:

Genesis 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it: for in the day that you eat thereof you shall surely die.

Genesis 2:18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.

Genesis 2:19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them: and whatever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

Genesis 2:20 And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.

Genesis 2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;

Genesis 2:22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her to the man.

Genesis 2:23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

Genesis 2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall join to his wife: and they shall be one flesh.

Genesis 2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed (AKJV).

The next dispensation following the fall was that of conscience. After the fall, mankind now had experiential knowledge of good and evil embedded in their conscience. Humanity now possessed the ability to do both good and evil, having lost our innocence in the fall. The law of conscience was now our guide. Knowing what constitutes good and evil innately, humanity was now at liberty to choose to do either. However, knowing something to be evil is not sufficient to keep men from indulging in it. The power of sin in the human heart made people to do evil even when they wanted to do good, as doing good now depended solely on the willpower, which has been significantly weakened by the sinful nature. This age ended with chaos, as unprecedented violence and wickedness engulfed humanity, forcing God to wipe out the entire human race (less Noah and his family) with the flood of judgement. The great deluge ended the age of conscience as the sole ruler of mankind.

Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, Yes, has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

Genesis 3:2 And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

Genesis 3:3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.

Genesis 3:4 And the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die:

Genesis 3:5 For God does know that in the day you eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

Genesis 3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also to her husband with her; and he did eat.

Genesis 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

Genesis 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

Genesis 3:9 And the LORD God called to Adam, and said to him, Where are you?

Genesis 3:10 And he said, I heard your voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.

Genesis 3:11 And he said, Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded you that you should not eat?

Genesis 3:12 And the man said, The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.

Genesis 3:13 And the LORD God said to the woman, What is this that you have done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

Genesis 3:14 And the LORD God said to the serpent, Because you have done this, you are cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; on your belly shall you go, and dust shall you eat all the days of your life:

Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.

Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in sorrow you shall bring forth children; and your desire shall be to your husband, and he shall rule over you.

Genesis 3:17 And to Adam he said, Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree, of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it: cursed is the ground for your sake; in sorrow shall you eat of it all the days of your life;

Genesis 3:18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to you; and you shall eat the herb of the field;

Genesis 3:19 In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread, till you return to the ground; for out of it were you taken: for dust you are, and to dust shall you return.

Genesis 3:20 And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.

Genesis 3:21 To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

Genesis 3:22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

Genesis 3:23 Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from from where he was taken.

Genesis 3:24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life (AKJV).

Romans 7:15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.

Romans 7:16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.

Romans 7:17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me.

Romans 7:18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.

Romans 7:19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do —this I keep on doing.

Romans 7:20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

Romans 7:21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me.

Romans 7:22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law;

Romans 7:23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.

Romans 7:24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? (NIV).

Romans 2:12 All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law.

Romans 2:13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.

Romans 2:14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law.

Romans 2:15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.)

Romans 2:16 This will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares (NIV).

After the age of conscience came the dispensation of human government. This started after the flood, with God recognising the need for human agents in administration, to punish law offenders and deter evil doers from inducing another total destruction of the race. Human governments would now be put in place to encourage and promote good behaviour, while adequately punishing evil doers, to serve as a deterrent to crime. Human societies would now be governed by law and order.

Genesis 8:20 And Noah built an altar to the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

Genesis 8:21 And the LORD smelled a sweet smell; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.

Genesis 8:22 While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

Genesis 9:1 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.

Genesis 9:2 And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be on every beast of the earth, and on every fowl of the air, on all that moves on the earth, and on all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.

Genesis 9:3 Every moving thing that lives shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.

Genesis 9:4 But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall you not eat.

Genesis 9:5 And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man.

Genesis 9:6 Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

Genesis 9:7 And you, be you fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein.

Genesis 9:8 And God spoke to Noah, and to his sons with him, saying,

Genesis 9:9 And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;

Genesis 9:10 And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.

Genesis 9:11 And I will establish my covenant with you, neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.

Genesis 9:12 And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:

Genesis 9:13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.

Genesis 9:14 And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:

Genesis 9:15 And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.

Genesis 9:16 And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look on it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.

Genesis 9:17 And God said to Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth (AKJV).

Within the dispensation of human government, God made a covenant of promise with Abraham, promising to make him a father of many nations and to bless the whole world through his Seed—Jesus Christ. That covenant of faith and grace is one that, with little modification, has endured till date, though it was temporarily suspended during the subsequent covenant and dispensation of the law which followed it.

Genesis 12:1 Now the LORD had said to Abram, Get you out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you:

Genesis 12:2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing:

Genesis 12:3 And I will bless them that bless you, and curse him that curses you: and in you shall all families of the earth be blessed.

Genesis 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said to him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be you perfect.

Genesis 17:2 And I will make my covenant between me and you, and will multiply you exceedingly.

Genesis 17:3 And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying,

Genesis 17:4 As for me, behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be a father of many nations.

Genesis 17:5 Neither shall your name any more be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made you.

Genesis 17:6 And I will make you exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come out of you.

Genesis 17:7 And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your seed after you in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God to you, and to your seed after you.

Genesis 17:8 And I will give to you, and to your seed after you, the land wherein you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.

Genesis 17:9 And God said to Abraham, You shall keep my covenant therefore, you, and your seed after you in their generations.

Genesis 17:10 This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your seed after you; Every man child among you shall be circumcised.

Genesis 17:11 And you shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant between me and you.

Genesis 17:12 And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of your seed.

Genesis 17:13 He that is born in your house, and he that is bought with your money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.

Genesis 17:14 And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant.

Genesis 17:15 And God said to Abraham, As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be.

Genesis 17:16 And I will bless her, and give you a son also of her: yes, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her (AKJV).

About 430 years after God made the covenant of promise with Abraham, Jehovah made a special covenant of the law with the nation of Israel on Mount Sinai (Horeb), wherein God promised to be Israel’s God and benefactor, as long as they kept and observed his special laws which he gave to them through Moses. Strict obedience to the Mosaic laws was necessary to secure God’s favour for the Jews under this covenant. The dispensation of the law was brought to an end by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Deuteronomy 5:1 Moses summoned all Israel and said: Hear, Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them.

Deuteronomy 5:2 The LORD our God made a covenant with us at Horeb.

Deuteronomy 5:3 It was not with our ancestors that the LORD made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today.

Deuteronomy 5:4 The LORD spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain.

Deuteronomy 5:5 (At that time I stood between the LORD and you to declare to you the word of the LORD, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) And he said:

Deuteronomy 5:6 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.

Deuteronomy 5:7 “You shall have no other gods before me.

Deuteronomy 5:8 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.

Deuteronomy 5:9 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,

Deuteronomy 5:10 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

Deuteronomy 5:11 “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.

Deuteronomy 5:12 “Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the LORD your God has commanded you.

Deuteronomy 5:13 Six days you shall labor and do all your work,

Deuteronomy 5:14 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, so that your male and female servants may rest, as you do.

Deuteronomy 5:15 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the LORD your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the LORD your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.

Deuteronomy 5:16 “Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the LORD your God is giving you.

Deuteronomy 5:17 “You shall not murder.

Deuteronomy 5:18 “You shall not commit adultery.

Deuteronomy 5:19 “You shall not steal.

Deuteronomy 5:20 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.

Deuteronomy 5:21 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. You shall not set your desire on your neighbor’s house or land, his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

Deuteronomy 5:22 These are the commandments the LORD proclaimed in a loud voice to your whole assembly there on the mountain from out of the fire, the cloud and the deep darkness; and he added nothing more. Then he wrote them on two stone tablets and gave them to me.

Deuteronomy 5:23 When you heard the voice out of the darkness, while the mountain was ablaze with fire, all the leaders of your tribes and your elders came to me.

Deuteronomy 5:24 And you said, “The LORD our God has shown us his glory and his majesty, and we have heard his voice from the fire. Today we have seen that a person can live even if God speaks with them.

Deuteronomy 5:25 But now, why should we die? This great fire will consume us, and we will die if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any longer.

Deuteronomy 5:26 For what mortal has ever heard the voice of the living God speaking out of fire, as we have, and survived?

Deuteronomy 5:27 Go near and listen to all that the LORD our God says. Then tell us whatever the LORD our God tells you. We will listen and obey.”

Deuteronomy 5:28 The LORD heard you when you spoke to me, and the LORD said to me, “I have heard what this people said to you. Everything they said was good.

Deuteronomy 5:29 Oh, that their hearts would be inclined to fear me and keep all my commands always, so that it might go well with them and their children forever!

Deuteronomy 5:30 “Go, tell them to return to their tents.

Deuteronomy 5:31 But you stay here with me so that I may give you all the commands, decrees and laws you are to teach them to follow in the land I am giving them to possess.”

Deuteronomy 5:32 So be careful to do what the LORD your God has commanded you; do not turn aside to the right or to the left.

Deuteronomy 5:33 Walk in obedience to all that the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess (NIV).

The Mosaic covenant was abolished by Christ’s death, with a new covenant of grace instituted to take its place. This new covenant of grace in Christ Jesus was for the whole of mankind and not just for the Jews, as was the case with the Mosaic covenant. God’s salvation was now available to all of humanity as a free gift of grace through Jesus Christ, the propitiation for our sins. The covenant of grace in Christ was actually a resumption and continuation of the Abrahamic covenant of Promise, with Christ as the Seed of Abraham through whom the whole world would be blessed.

Hebrews 8:1 Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;

Hebrews 8:2 A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.

Hebrews 8:3 For every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: why it is of necessity that this man have somewhat also to offer.

Hebrews 8:4 For if he were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law:

Hebrews 8:5 Who serve to the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, said he, that you make all things according to the pattern showed to you in the mount.

Hebrews 8:6 But now has he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises.

Hebrews 8:7 For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.

Hebrews 8:8 For finding fault with them, he said, Behold, the days come, said the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

Hebrews 8:9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, said the Lord.

Hebrews 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, said the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:

Hebrews 8:11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.

Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.

Hebrews 8:13 In that he said, A new covenant, he has made the first old. Now that which decays and waxes old is ready to vanish away (AKJV).

Hebrews 12:24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaks better things that that of Abel (AKJV).

Matthew 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.

Matthew 26:27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink you all of it;

Matthew 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins (AKJV).

Finally, there’s the future age of regeneration or the kingdom age, which would be established during the millennial reign of Christ, during which Christ and the resurrected saints would establish a rule of righteousness on earth. During this period, all the effects of the fall would be undone, and there would be peace and righteousness on earth, with no more wars and violence. Even wild animals would become tame and none would hurt or destroy another. Paradise would be restored on earth. That’s when the meek would inherit the earth, as promised in the Scriptures.

Matthew 19:27 Then answered Peter and said to him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed you; what shall we have therefore?

Matthew 19:28 And Jesus said to them, Truly I say to you, That you which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, you also shall sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Matthew 19:29 And every one that has forsaken houses, or brothers, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name’s sake, shall receive an hundred times, and shall inherit everlasting life.

Matthew 19:30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first (AKJV).

Isaiah 11:1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

Isaiah 11:2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;

Isaiah 11:3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

Isaiah 11:4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.

Isaiah 11:5 And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.

Isaiah 11:6 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatted calf together; and a little child shall lead them.

Isaiah 11:7 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

Isaiah 11:8 And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.

Isaiah 11:9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

Isaiah 11:10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious (AKJV).

Revelation 2:26 And he that overcomes, and keeps my works to the end, to him will I give power over the nations:

Revelation 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father (AKJV).

Isaiah 2:1 The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

Isaiah 2:2 And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow to it.

Isaiah 2:3 And many people shall go and say, Come you, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

Isaiah 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

Isaiah 2:5 O house of Jacob, come you, and let us walk in the light of the LORD (AKJV).

Isaiah 65:17 For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

Isaiah 65:18 But be you glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy.

Isaiah 65:19 And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying.

Isaiah 65:20 There shall be no more there an infant of days, nor an old man that has not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed.

Isaiah 65:21 And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them.

Isaiah 65:22 They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and my elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.

Isaiah 65:23 They shall not labor in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the LORD, and their offspring with them.

Isaiah 65:24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.

Isaiah 65:25 The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, said the LORD (AKJV).

Having briefly outlined the various dispensational ages and the covenants regulating them, it’s important to highlight some key points here. Most of the terms of each covenant are carried or absorbed into the one succeeding it, with minor modifications and some additions. For instance, the death penalty for sin under the Adamic covenant of innocence, as well as sufferings and sicknesses that followed violation of that covenant, are still being experienced up till today, and are still operational even under the covenant of grace in Christ—people (including Christians) are still required to labour before they eat, and women still pass through labour pains before delivery (including born-again women). Conscience still guides us, and is taken into account by God in judgement of individuals, though it can be seared and become deadened or insensitive to sin, by continuous wilful sinning. Human governments still operate to ensure law and order and to deter crime. They are to be obeyed as God’s ministers of righteousness. The promise of salvation by faith made to Abraham is fulfilled in Christ and is being enjoyed by all believers today. The most notable exception is the Mosaic covenant which was abolished almost in its entirety (with only a few components absorbed into the new covenant of grace), and is no longer binding on God’s people. It must be remembered that the Mosaic covenant, in the first place, was a narrow covenant between just Israel and God, and did not involve the rest of humanity ab initio. It wasn’t a universal or an everlasting covenant like all the others before and after it.

To divide the word of truth rightly, we need to carefully identify which dispensation a particular word of God refers or applies to, so as not to translocate what was meant specifically for one dispensation or covenant to another one. Though some word of God are universal and apply to all dispensations and covenants, some are specific to particular dispensations, and cannot be applied across board to others. For instance, though the Noahic covenant is a universal and everlasting covenant of grace, Noah’s sacrifice of animals for offering, as well as his being forbidden to eat certain unclean animals, are not applicable to us today. These portions of the Noahic covenant are obsolete and expired, though the other parts remain extant. Also, although the Abrahamic covenant is still valid (being continued by Christ, Abraham’s Seed), some portions of it are no longer valid. Circumcision of male infants was a key component of the Abrahamic covenant (in fact, it was the seal of that covenant). Any male descendant of Abraham who was not circumcised was to be cut off from among his people. Now, in Christ, circumcision of the foreskin is no longer a mandatory religious requirement.

Some promises in the Scriptures were made to particular individuals and have been fulfilled. Such promises do not necessarily apply to all persons and cannot be so stretched, though we can learn important lessons about God’s faithfulness from such. God’s individual covenant with David or Phinehas, for instance, cannot be applied to all men, but we learn from such covenants how God faithfully rewards fidelity to him and zeal for his word. Similarly, some divine promises are for the future kingdom age, and cannot be applied to our present age. For instance, the promise of not dying physically, of a violence-free world and obliteration of all the effects of the fall can only apply in the kingdom age. The promise of believers or the meek inheriting the earth and ruling in it is also for the kingdom age, not now.

In conclusion, rightly dividing the word of truth entails having a global, dispensational view of the Scriptures and of the plan of salvation. It entails understanding the various dispensations/ages and the promises unique to each, while acknowledging what’s universal for all ages. It also requires separating promises specific for certain individuals from general ones meant for all believers. Knowing what has expired in each dispensational covenant, and what is still extant and relevant is also key to rightly dividing the word of truth. Some covenants, like the Adamic, Noahic and Abrahamic covenants are everlasting, spanning many dispensations, and are still operational, with minor modifications. The Mosaic covenant, however, was a temporary stopgap measure that has expired and has been abolished. It was only intended to administer God’s people until the promised Seed of Abraham (Christ) would come to fulfil the Abrahamic covenant. Finally, reading each passage of the Bible in context, and making effort to locate its rightful place in the plan of salvation is necessary to ensure a balanced view of the Scriptures, in order to divide the word of truth aright. Every word of God is truth, but not all truth of Scriptures are current, as some truths have expired, while others are futuristic. Thus, only by rightly dividing the Scriptures can we know the present truth and be firmly established in it!

2 Peter 1:12 Why I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though you know them, and be established in the present truth (AKJV).

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The Second Advent: Jesus Is Coming Back In Power And Glory To Take Over The Kingdoms Of This World!

(Unless otherwise stated, all Bible quotations are from the English Standard Version)

One of the most consistent teachings in the New Testament is the return of Jesus Christ to the earth, in power and glory, to establish the Kingdom of God on earth. Jesus told his disciples about his Second Advent on many occasions, linking his return in power to their hope of glory. Jesus is coming back to the earth bodily, just as the disciples saw him ascend back to heaven. That’s what the angels told them at his ascension, as they kept gazing after him in a forlorn manner, as he disappeared into heaven. After Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came down upon the disciples and kept reminding them of this and other words of Jesus, the Second Advent became the focus of the disciples, and a rallying cry to get believers to be heavenly-minded. The appearing of the Lord in glory to reward every man according to his works is supposed to fire up our zeal for God and encourage us not to become weary in doing good.

The Acts 1:1 In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach,

The Acts 1:2 until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen.

The Acts 1:3 To them he presented himself alive after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God.

The Acts 1:4 And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, you heard from me;

The Acts 1:5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.

The Acts 1:6 So when they had come together, they asked him, Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?

The Acts 1:7 He said to them, It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority.

The Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.

The Acts 1:9 And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight.

The Acts 1:10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes,

The Acts 1:11 and said, Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.

Matthew 16:24 Then Jesus told his disciples, If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

Matthew 16:25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

Matthew 16:26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life?

Matthew 16:27 For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.

Revelation 1:4 John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne,

Revelation 1:5 and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood

Revelation 1:6 and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Revelation 1:7 Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

Revelation 3:11 I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.

Revelation 22:12 Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay everyone for what he has done.

Revelation 22:13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.

Revelation 22:14 Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates.

Let’s quickly clarify some things here. The Second Advent is not the rapture, when the Lord comes to take away the saints from the earth to heaven. In the rapture, which precedes the Second Advent by some years, Christ comes down from heaven and remains in the sky, where the resurrected dead saints and the transformed living ones get caught up to meet him in the air. He doesn’t descend to the earth, and he’s not seen by all men, save the saints alone who behold him. In contrast, in the Second Advent, Jesus descends to the earth in power and glory, accompanied by the raptured saints and holy angels, and is seen by all. All eyes on earth will behold him then (just like all eyes behold the sun at once all over the world), and people on the earth then will wail because of him, for he is coming to judge and overthrow the kingdoms of this world in order to establish the kingdom of God on earth!

Zechariah 14:1 Behold, a day is coming for the LORD, when the spoil taken from you will be divided in your midst.

Zechariah 14:2 For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken and the houses plundered and the women raped. Half of the city shall go out into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be cut off from the city.

Zechariah 14:3 Then the LORD will go out and fight against those nations as when he fights on a day of battle.

Zechariah 14:4 On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall be split in two from east to west by a very wide valley, so that one half of the Mount shall move northward, and the other half southward.

Zechariah 14:5 And you shall flee to the valley of my mountains, for the valley of the mountains shall reach to Azal. And you shall flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the LORD my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.

Revelation 19:11 Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war.

Revelation 19:12 His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself.

Revelation 19:13 He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.

Revelation 19:14 And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses.

Revelation 19:15 From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty.

Revelation 19:16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.

Revelation 19:17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly directly overhead, Come, gather for the great supper of God,

Revelation 19:18 to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all men, both free and slave, both small and great.

Revelation 19:20 And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur.

Revelation 19:21 And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh.

Revelation 1:7 Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

Unlike the rapture which has no predicted signs in Scriptures heralding it, being an event that will occur suddenly and secretly, the Second Advent is to be preceded by certain Scriptural signs. The Lord himself told the apostles there would be a great apostasy in the period preceding his Second Advent, with religion growing cold and lots of false prophets arising to deceive and lead many astray. Natural disasters and human conflicts will also rachet up in the period leading to the Second Advent, causing unprecedented chaos. Then there would be visible signs of judgement in the sky, sea and land, cataclysmic changes in nature, to be experienced by the before the Lord appears with the holy angels and resurrected saints, in power and glory. These terrifying signs—the sun refusing to give her light, the blood moon, the shaking of the heavenly bodies, unprecedented earthquakes, etc, are parts of the great tribulation judgement that would plague the world and strike such terror in the hearts of the inhabitants of the earth at the time of the Second Advent.

Matthew 24:1 Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple.

Matthew 24:2 But he answered them, You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.

Matthew 24:3 As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?

Matthew 24:4 And Jesus answered them, See that no one leads you astray.

Matthew 24:5 For many will come in my name, saying, I am the Christ, and they will lead many astray.

Matthew 24:6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet.

Matthew 24:7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places.

Matthew 24:8 All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.

Matthew 24:9 Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake.

Matthew 24:10 And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another.

Matthew 24:11 And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray.

Matthew 24:12 And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.

Matthew 24:13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

Matthew 24:15 So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place ( let the reader understand),

Matthew 24:16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.

Matthew 24:17 Let the one who is on the housetop not go down to take what is in his house,

Matthew 24:18 and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak.

Matthew 24:19 And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days!

Matthew 24:20 Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath.

Matthew 24:21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be.

Matthew 24:22 And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.

Matthew 24:23 Then if anyone says to you, Look, here is the Christ! or There he is! do not believe it.

Matthew 24:24 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.

Matthew 24:25 See, I have told you beforehand.

Matthew 24:26 So, if they say to you, Look, he is in the wilderness, do not go out. If they say, Look, he is in the inner rooms, do not believe it.

Matthew 24:27 For as the lightning comes from the east and shines as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.

Matthew 24:28 Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.

Matthew 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

Matthew 24:30 Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

Paul also tells us, in his second letter to the Thessalonians, that the Second Advent will take place during the reign of the Anti-Christ, the man of lawlessness whose coming is after the activity of Satan, and who will deceive the world to reject God and follow after Satan in the worship of the Anti-Christ. Christ will come at the end of the reign of the Anti-Christ, to destroy him, dismantle his kingdom and establish the Kingdom of God on earth. Christ is coming with the raptured saints (who had to be taken out of the way first, in the rapture, for the Anti-Christ to be revealed) who, together with the holy angels, would wage war on the Anti-Christ and his armies. The armies of the Anti-Christ will be defeated and destroyed by the Lord, and he (the Anti-Christ) and his false prophet will be cast alive into the lake of fire. These are the very first of Christ’s actions in the Second Advent. Jesus is coming back as the King of kings and the Lord of lords, as the Lion of the tribe of Judah!

2 Thessalonians 2:1 Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers,

2 Thessalonians 2:2 not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come.

2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,

2 Thessalonians 2:4 who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.

2 Thessalonians 2:5 Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things?

2 Thessalonians 2:6 And you know what is restraining him now so that he may be revealed in his time.

2 Thessalonians 2:7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way.

2 Thessalonians 2:8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming.

2 Thessalonians 2:9 The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders,

2 Thessalonians 2:10 and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.

2 Thessalonians 2:11 Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,

2 Thessalonians 2:12 in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.

2 Thessalonians 2:14 To this he called you through our gospel, so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

2 Thessalonians 2:15 So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter.

2 Thessalonians 2:16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace,

2 Thessalonians 2:17 comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.

After defeating the Anti-Christ and his armies upon descending to the earth in the Second Advent, the Lord will separate and judge the nations on the earth at the time of his Advent, separating the sheep from the goat nations, based on their dealings with the restored nation of Israel during the reign of the Anti-Christ. Those nations who helped persecuted Israel to escape the wrath of the Anti-Christ will receive the blessings of the Lord, and will be rewarded with everlasting life. These are the sheep nations. The goat nations are those that refused to help restored Israel in her hour of national distress and persecution from the Anti-Christ; they will be rewarded with everlasting shame and contempt by the Lord. Thus, God’s eternal promise, sworn under oath, of blessing those that bless Israel, and of cursing those that curse them, will be honoured till the very end, for God cannot lie, nor will he alter the thing that has gone out of his mouth. The rest of those remaining on earth will thus be ushered into the mellenial reign of Christ, for the next one thousand years. Satan will be bound and cast into the abyss during this period, and will not be available to tempt or deceive people on earth during this glorious period. Only the resurrected saints and those alive on earth at the time of the second Advent (who were neither part of the armies of the Anti-Christ, nor among the goat nations that persecuted the Jews) will be part of this reign of Christ on earth. The rest of the dead will not rise until the thousand years are over. What a glorious time it will be on earth then, as righteousness, peace, justice and prosperity flourish in unimaginable ways!

Matthew 25:31 When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne.

Matthew 25:32 Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.

Matthew 25:33 And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left.

Matthew 25:34 Then the King will say to those on his right, Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.

Matthew 25:35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,

Matthew 25:36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.

Matthew 25:37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?

Matthew 25:38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?

Matthew 25:39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?

Matthew 25:40 And the King will answer them, Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.

Matthew 25:41 Then he will say to those on his left, Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

Matthew 25:42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,

Matthew 25:43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.

Matthew 25:44 Then they also will answer, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?

Matthew 25:45 Then he will answer them, saying, Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.

Matthew 25:46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.

Luke 19:11 As they heard these things, he proceeded to tell a parable, because he was near to Jerusalem, and because they supposed that the kingdom of God was to appear immediately.

Luke 19:12 He said therefore, A nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and then return.

Luke 19:13 Calling ten of his servants, he gave them ten minas, and said to them, Engage in business until I come.

Luke 19:14 But his citizens hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, We do not want this man to reign over us.

Luke 19:15 When he returned, having received the kingdom, he ordered these servants to whom he had given the money to be called to him, that he might know what they had gained by doing business.

Luke 19:16 The first came before him, saying, Lord, your mina has made ten minas more.

Luke 19:17 And he said to him, Well done, good servant! Because you have been faithful in a very little, you shall have authority over ten cities.

Luke 19:18 And the second came, saying, Lord, your mina has made five minas.

Luke 19:19 And he said to him, And you are to be over five cities.

Luke 19:20 Then another came, saying, Lord, here is your mina, which I kept laid away in a handkerchief;

Luke 19:21 for I was afraid of you, because you are a severe man. You take what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow.

Luke 19:22 He said to him, I will condemn you with your own words, you wicked servant! You knew that I was a severe man, taking what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow?

Luke 19:23 Why then did you not put my money in the bank, and at my coming I might have collected it with interest?

Luke 19:24 And he said to those who stood by, Take the mina from him, and give it to the one who has the ten minas.

Luke 19:25 And they said to him, Lord, he has ten minas!

Luke 19:26 I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

Luke 19:27 But as for these enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slaughter them before me.

Revelation 20:1 Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding in his hand the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain.

Revelation 20:2 And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years,

Revelation 20:3 and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were ended. After that he must be released for a little while.

Revelation 20:4 Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

Revelation 20:5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This is the first resurrection.

Revelation 20:6 Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.

Isaiah 11:1 There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.

Isaiah 11:2 And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD.

Isaiah 11:3 And his delight shall be in the fear of the LORD. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide disputes by what his ears hear,

Isaiah 11:4 but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked.

Isaiah 11:5 Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist, and faithfulness the belt of his loins.

Isaiah 11:6 The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together; and a little child shall lead them.

Isaiah 11:7 The cow and the bear shall graze; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

Isaiah 11:8 The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den.

Isaiah 11:9 They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.

Isaiah 2:2 It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be lifted up above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it,

Isaiah 2:3 and many peoples shall come, and say: Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

Isaiah 2:4 He shall judge between the nations, and shall decide disputes for many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.

In conclusion, the Second Advent of Christ is distinct from the rapture, being the coming of Christ with the raptured/resurrected saints, to rule upon the earth. The rapture precedes the Second Advent by some years, with the reign of the Anti-Christ interposed between both events. The Second Advent will witness the coming of Christ in power and glory, to destroy the Anti-Christ and his armies, bind and cast Satan into abyss for a thousand years, judge the nations on earth at the time of his appearing (in relation to their treatment of Israel during the reign of the Anti-Christ), and establish the Kingdom of God on earth for a thousand years. Only the resurrected saints and the people left on earth after the judgement of the nations will experience this glorious reign of righteousness, justice, peace and prosperity. The rest of the dead will not rise till the thousand years are over, and will only arise to face the White Throne judgement. As sure as night follows day, the kingdoms of this world will one day become the Kingdom of our God and his Christ, and the saints will rule on the earth alongside their Saviour, King, Lord and Master! Hallelujah!

Revelation 11:15 Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.

Revelation 11:16 And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God,

Revelation 11:17 saying, We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, who is and who was, for you have taken your great power and begun to reign.

Revelation 11:18 The nations raged, but your wrath came, and the time for the dead to be judged, and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear your name, both small and great, and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.

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