The Object of Worship

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Sunday school from October 25th, 2020

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All right, real quick let's pray and then we will get started. Heavenly Father almighty and everlasting
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God we come before you in humble awe. You are the one true God and there is none other like you.
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Come we pray and bless our hearts and our minds as we study your word. Send your Holy Spirit into our lives so that we may grow in love and grace and that we may go forth into all the world proclaiming the good news of your son so that others may learn of your saving grace through Jesus Christ our
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Lord. Amen. Okay, let's see if we can pull this off.
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All right, now real quick everybody can you can hear me okay? It shows that we've got a we've got a solid audio feed coming in off the computer and the camera is right here.
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Slightly different angle so you don't have to look up my nose. It just means that everybody here in Kongsvinger sees this big black ugly thing in the way and we'll figure out maybe a better way to mount it in the future.
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Who knows we'll kind of work this all out. Okay, so let me check questions here.
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Let's see here so the question and I think November we fall back an hour is that correct? Yeah, next week so if you were looking for a day when you can sleep in I believe
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Sunday is the day. You get one extra hour next week so unless unless somebody says otherwise.
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Let's say we have a buffalo treadmill internet by me too. Those are the best by the way. The only issue with buffalo powered treadmill internet is is cleaning up after the buffalo.
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But thankfully the trustees here at Kongsvinger have worked that all out.
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So okay, I'm not seeing any questions online at the moment.
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Any questions here as it relates to the sermon?
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Let me reconnect to the television because as our every time our internet goes out where it boots me off of the airplay here.
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Let's see how that works. Yeah, they did 60 games. It was a sprint man. It was a sprint and it didn't it and let's say the
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Dodgers. They're looking good but I never ever put confidence in a baseball team because if I did that then
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I would be institutionalized. Listen, there's a difference between being a
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Dodger baseball fan and somebody who is engaging in self -harm. So if you're a
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Twins fan, I think that that falls into self -harm category. I'm happy that they're in the
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World Series but it's time for them to not only be in the World Series but actually win it the last two times they've been in it.
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They've lost so it's tied two to two. So there's a chance. They're looking good. They're looking good.
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Yeah, game five tonight. All right, so Shannon says, I saw in the comments that it was a good sermon. I always catch up on them if I'm not able to listen live.
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Okay, that's good. Yeah, so we do archive our sermons and put them up on the church's website and so that they're always there as a resource.
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Okay, what we have been doing is we are working our way through the book of Revelation, which is a ponderously difficult book in some parts.
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And if you remember in Revelation, we got to the part where we heard the voice say, come up here and John has now a vision, if you would, of the heavenly worship.
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And I pointed this out that the worship of heaven is very
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Christocentric. It's focused on Jesus and as worship should be.
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Worship is about the object of your faith, the object of your worship. And you can sometimes tell if somebody has bad or really squirrely weird theology if their worship music has this bizarre habit of focusing in on us.
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I remember years ago somebody had put together a parody video on YouTube. You could still find it.
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And it was a commentary, a parody commentary, on the fact that so much of contemporary evangelical worship songs seem to be obsessed with and focus on me, right?
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So it included songs like, Lord, I lift my name on high. Lord, I love to sing my praises.
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I'm so glad I'm in my life. You know, or one of my favorites, I exalt me,
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I exalt me. You know, you get the idea. But you'll note that the worship of heaven does not exalt the worshiper.
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The worship of heaven worships and exalts Christ. It is focused on him.
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And so when we read the chapters that we read, we also read the fact that there were seals, there was a scroll with seals on it.
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Nobody was able, no one was worthy to open up the seals.
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And so I'll back up into Revelation chapter 5 just a little bit, and we'll see kind of the tail end of the worship here.
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There was a little bit of angst and concern because nobody was worthy to open the scroll.
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And so what ended up happening, in fact, let me just back up. So between the throne and the four living creatures, this is verse 6 of Revelation 5, and among the elders
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I saw a lamb standing as though it had been slain with seven horns, seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.
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I keep saying this, what's the number of God? Seven. That's an important number. Keep that number in mind because when we get to the 666, it kind of makes sense when you keep noting that over and again all the number references to God directly are sevens, all right?
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So he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne, and when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty -four elders fell down before the lamb, each holding a harp, golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
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Keep this in mind. We're going to see a similar picture when the cycle finishes and we come back around and do the cycle again.
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The prayers are also mentioned again. And then here's this new song. Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe, language, and people, and nation.
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And you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God. Now, if you've ever heard somebody quote
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Revelation 5 .10 out of context, N .A .R.,
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people who have prophets, prophetesses, and apostles, you'll note that they misquote it.
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And here's how they misquote it. Have you not read in scripture that God has made us kings and priests?
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Oh, are you a king? Well, kings decree and declare. They make proclamations.
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And so you need to just take authority over the weather. You need to take authority over the latest hurricane. I know
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I need to make the Dodgers win by taking authority and decreeing and declaring that the
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Dodgers will rise victorious in the 2020 World Series.
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You know, I can just Gandalf it, you know. Get my stick out. But the thing is that it does not say that we are kings and priests.
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It says that you have made them a kingdom and priests to our
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God. Right, yeah, yeah.
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Okay, now note here. As Christians, we are part of this vast group known as the priesthood of all believers.
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Priesthood. So what do priests do? They offer prayers, right?
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They serve other people. So a pastor of mine years ago used to put out a weekly devotional and he called it the priesthood in prayer.
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And so it was basically help for the upcoming week. What should we be praying about?
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So the priesthood in prayer. So we as priests, we pray for others. We serve them in our good works and things of that nature.
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But it does not say that we are kings. We are a kingdom and we are priests to our God. And they shall reign on the earth.
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Right, yes. When? Now? No. Because notice the future tense.
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They shall reign. Shall reign. So in the new earth, Christians, they are kings under the high king
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Christ in the new earth. So you'll note that there is a day coming.
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There's an aspect to the fact that as believers, we're going to have positions of authority and power in the new earth.
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But again, the government of the new earth is not going to have anything to do with punishing evildoers. What's the government going to do without evildoers?
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There's no problems to solve. I wonder what we'll be doing. But you get the idea.
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So then I looked and I heard around the throne the living creatures, the elders, the voice of many angels numbering myriads of myriads of thousands and thousands saying with a loud voice, worthy is the lamb who was slain to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.
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Again, note the Christocentric nature of this worship. And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea and all that is in them saying to him who sits on the throne and to the lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever.
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And all the four living creatures said amen. So be it. And all the elders fell down and they worshiped.
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Now that brings us up to speed where we left off. Chapter six now. Now comes the opening of the seals.
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And the thing is is that I've already made the statement and I'll reiterate it that the book of Revelation is taking a look at the time from Christ's ascension until his return.
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That's the time of the tribulation. That's the time of the great tumult, the war of the devil and the beast against the church.
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And so when we take a look at the opening of the seals we're going to note the, for lack of a better way of putting it, kind of the bland everyday mundaneness of some of these so -called curses which is just describing what is happening on the earth from the time again of Christ's ascension until his return.
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Our cross reference is going to be in Matthew 24. So I watched when the lamb opened one of the seals and I heard one of the four living creatures say with a voice like thunder come.
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And I looked and behold a white horse. Its rider had a bow and a crown was given to him and he came out conquering and to conquer.
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All right. So we've got a guy, an angel, somebody riding out with a bow and he's got a crown.
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He conquers and conquers. Has humanity experienced conquistador type kings and things of that nature in the last couple of thousand years?
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Yeah. All right. That's, I don't know, that's kind of just the standard stuff but you're going to note something here.
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You know, when people are being conquered by another kingdom or by somebody who is an aggressive king like that.
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So you think back into like history of the last hundred years. So you have
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Hitler's conquest of Austria then his push into Poland and then on into the
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Netherlands and into Belgium and conquering of France. All right. This is an example of this.
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And so this is showing us that in the time from Christ's ascension until his return that these are the types of things that we would be seeing in human history.
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It's part of the turmoil of our times. And I'm going to give us a cross reference to this and you can kind of see it a little bit more clearly when we look at the
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Olivet Discourse. So I'm going to duplicate this tab and we're going to be in Matthew 24. And so presenting questions.
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So Jesus left the temple was going away and his disciples came to the point out to him the buildings of the temple.
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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.
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Now the disciples at this point in hearing that the temple is going to be destroyed think that that's concurrent pretty much with the end of the world and the return of Christ because what's the purpose of the temple?
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Forgiveness of sins. That's its primary thing. It has to do the sacrifices and the atonements and all of those things.
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And so without people being able to have their sins forgiven that's got to be the end of the world, right?
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So he sat on the Mount of Olives. The disciples came to him privately saying, tell us when will these things be? What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?
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All right? Of your coming and of the end of the age. So the disciples are already aware that Christ is going to return to heaven and that he will return again at the end of the age.
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And they have conflated the destruction of the temple in 70 AD with that event.
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And so that's kind of the issue. But Jesus doesn't tease it out. So what he ends up doing is, this is called a proleptic prophecy where there's prophecies related, there are bits of this prophecy related to the end of the world and bits of this prophecy related to the destruction of the temple in 70
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AD. So again first thing out of the shoe is see to it that no one leads you astray. Many will come in my name saying
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I am the Messiah. I am the Christ. I am an anointed one. And they will lead many astray.
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All right? So number one thing to look out for in the in the last days, the church is a very treacherous place to be.
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Do I have a witness? It is. It really is. I mean, I mean how...
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I keep pointing this out and I'll continue to point this out. Have you guys noticed that nobody, not one single person claiming to be a prophet predicted or heard from God warning us about COVID -19?
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Not one. And then you got those yahoos on television, decreeing and declaring, taking command and control over COVID -19 back in March.
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And COVID -19, I blow the wind of God on you. And how'd that work out, right?
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That didn't work out very well, okay? And then they prophesied that at the time of the Passover that there would be a, you know, that the dissipation of of COVID -19 would occur.
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As COVID -19 disappeared going back to the Passover. I would note news at the moment is that seems to be hitting all -time highs all over the country.
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And that's just a mess. And then of course, none of them predicted the
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BLM riots. Nobody saw that coming. Nobody prophesied that Donald Trump would test positive for COVID -19.
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And it's kind of a big deal of a head of state, like of the United States, a superpower like that.
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It contracts a disease that's killing people. That's kind of a big story, if you know what I mean. They seem to be completely powerless in this regard.
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And I always crack up because in one of the things I have on my computer at home is
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I have a screenshot of a fellow by the name of Sean Bowles who canceled a prophecy conference due to unforeseen circumstances.
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Okay, who cancels a prophecy conference due to unforeseen circumstances?
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That's just silly, right? But the thing is, have they stopped? No! Are people still sending these yahoos money?
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Yes! Okay, so you'll note that the church is going to be a treacherous place.
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People claiming to be anointed ones, and within the church they are leading how many astray?
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A few, just a scad little portion. The small amount? No, it's many.
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Many are going to be led astray. So no, the devil is quite active within the church, and there's a reason for this.
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And it's actually found in the book of Revelation in that chapter 13 that false religion, false prophets are part of the mechanism put together, constructed, or concocted by the devil for the purpose of waging war against the church.
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All right? We is at war. And we're not at war with Russia, not at war with China.
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We're at war with the devil, and the devil is the one who's declared war on us, and we'll talk about that as we go. All right, so here's what
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Christ then says, and you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. All right, well if we look at this, seal number one, all right, and you know
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Christ has come, and I looked, and behold a white horse, his rider had a bow and a crown, and was given to him, and he came out conquering, and to conquer.
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Okay, all right. Wars, rumors of wars, conquerors, and things like that, that's all part of, if you would, the warp and the woof of the time that exists from Christ's ascension until his return.
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Wars, rumors of wars, conquering kings, nations rising against nations, you kind of get the gist of it.
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That's part of the punishment, because if you think about it, this world is a kind of a dangerous place to live in, and our history is marked with us treating each other we're all part of the human race, of us treating each other quite horribly, quite horribly, rather than loving our neighbor.
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We look at our neighbor's stuff, we look at our neighbor's resources, we look at our neighbor's country's resources, and we go, hmm, hmm, if I just get rid of my neighbor,
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I can have his stuff, right? So that's the thing with conquerors.
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It's just theft on a national level of other people's stuff. A white horse is a conquering war horse, all right?
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That's a war horse, yeah. Okay, if you think back to the sermons that you've heard on Palm Sunday, your pastor may or may not have in the past made the point that Christ comes riding in on a colt, the foal of a donkey, which is totally unexpected, because if someone's coming in to conquer, they're one of them white war horses, man, and these things are trained to kick and to bite and to just, yeah, yeah, conquering war horse.
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It's the horse of glory, you know, so, and by the way, you have to say glory that way. It's polysyllabic, glory, yeah, yeah, yeah, so not here.
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There is a point where Christ does show up on a white horse, not yet, okay, not yet, that's coming, okay?
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All right, so second seal, when he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, come, and out came another horse, bright red, and its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth so that people should slay one another, and he was given a great sword.
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Is planet Earth the planet of peace? There hasn't been a moment of global peace in my entire life.
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I'm 52 years old, and all I ever see on the news is how this people group and that people group, you know,
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Bosnia -Herzegovina, and then you think of the Russians, and then you think of the Serbs, and then you think of, with stuff going down in, you know,
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Boko Raton, and just start naming the places, right? And then you think of, you know, what was the
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Santinistas when I was a kid, when Reagan was president, and, you know, and over and over and over again, have you noticed people not getting along so well?
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Peace has not been one of those things that we've ever been able to achieve on this planet, at least not that I'm aware of, okay?
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Yeah. Oh, yeah.
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Oh, I want to nerd out on that. Okay. Cool. World War II by the week,
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YouTube. All right. Wow. Okay, so you just find this week and what happened.
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Wow. All right.
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Okay. Yeah, and the thing is, is that when we study history, we lose sight of the fact that, I mean, people slugged this thing out over years, and there were times when the outcome was not certain.
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You didn't know what was going to happen. By the way, I like your Contigo mug. I lost my wrap on mine, too.
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I'm a little bummed about that. So I went on the Contigo website to see if I can order another one, and no, no.
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I can order a new cap, but not the new grip. I'm very bummed about this.
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I'm in deep mourning. It happened last night. It still keeps liquids.
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Yes. So you're saying that once I get past the initial feeling of loss, that I will embrace the mug and it'll still be okay.
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Okay, good. Yeah, that's right.
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Yeah, the only place where there is peace is Antarctica, but I would remind you that they have carnivorous leopard seals there, so you don't want to go swimming in Antarctica.
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Not that I would swim in Antarctica anyway, because if I were to just jump into the water, you'd have to call the medical professionals, and that's a different story altogether.
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All right, so you'll note that, again, taking peace from the earth, this is the status quo.
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This is the status quo. These are the curses of humanity, and this is setting, if you would, the foundation for what are we to expect as Christians, the world to be like from the time of Christ's ascension until his return.
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Now, I'm going to point this out. If that's the right way of understanding this, then there is an eschatological view that is completely ruled out, post -millennialism.
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Post -millennialism, I can only describe it using a Beatles song, and here's the Beatles song.
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I've got to admit it's getting better, getting better all the time. It can't get no worse, right?
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So that's post -millennialism, and I will note that post -millennialism is one of these weird eschatological views that seems to arise during periods of long peace or inactivity militarily within the
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United States. So if you guys remember any of your history regarding World War I, what was that war called?
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No, the war to end all wars, all right? How'd that work out?
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Okay. Yeah, well, actually, World War I was fought in two major chapters, okay?
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World War II is a direct result of World War I. The two are intricately linked, but it's called the war to end all wars, and if you remember,
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President Wilson, if you know anything about his policies, he's the guy who came up with the concept of the
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League of Nations, all right? The League of Nations, we have our version of it now, the United Nations.
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What was the whole purpose of the League of Nations? To end war. How's that worked out?
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I don't really know. Okay, I kind of think it's hilarious that in our time, all the conspiracy theorists are out there going, the
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United Nations has military equipment. Yeah, because you have
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United Nations peacekeepers in military uniform with military armor, military vehicles.
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You'll note the peacekeepers generally have to do their job with a rifle, okay? All right, so I'm just pointing this out here, okay?
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If part of the warp and woof of the time from Christ's ascension until his return is you've got conquerors, you have peace taken from the earth, will we ever get things to the point where we've got it all solved, there's world peace, and then we can all sing that song?
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I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony. I'd like to buy the world a
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Coke and keep it company, right? Remember that? I'm really showing my age here. No, and we're not going to all gather around and sing it's a small world while hugging each other and singing
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Kumbaya. In other words, what are we going to expect?
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One of the curses of God on sinful humanity is our inability to get along with each other and peace has been taken from the earth.
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There is only peace through the Prince of Peace and that's Christ, all right?
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Yeah, all right. So here's the third one. So when I opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, come, and I looked and behold a black horse.
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Its rider had a pair of scales in his hand and I heard what seemed to be the voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying a quart of wheat for a denarius and three quarts of barley for a denarius and do not harm the oil and the wine.
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Well, this is a picture of what? Famine. Is famine a thing on planet earth?
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Continues to be, does it not? In fact, was it not this year that there was a ginormous locust swarm in Africa?
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Ate a bunch of resources, right? And don't even get me started on murder hornets. That's a different thing altogether.
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I mean, when I was a kid, it was Somalia. You guys remember Band -Aid? Feed the world.
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Let them know, anyway. I grew up with,
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I was part of the first generation of MTV, thank you. But you get the idea, all right?
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So planet earth is a place where famine is one of those things that is a common occurrence.
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Think of it this way. What do economists fear right now? Not a recession.
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They fear a depression. All right, last time we had a depression run through this country, oh boy.
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I mean, it changed American behavior down, down, down to the core.
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When I was growing up, so my grandparents who both lived through the Great Depression, all right? So there
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I am, staying with my grandparents in New Hyde Park, Long Island, all right?
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New Hyde Park, Long Island, right? And so every single
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Saturday, there was a ritual my grandmother would engage in. She would take all the leftovers and she would make something called garbage stew.
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Nothing ever went to waste in my grandparents' house. They only purchased the amount of groceries that they needed for the week and anything that was left over, it went into garbage stew.
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And I gotta tell you, garbage stew was the best thing ever. I always loved Saturday nights at my grandparents' house because it was garbage stew and root beer floats, all right?
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But my grandmother made a mean garbage stew. Yeah, bubble and squeak, right?
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Yeah, right. But at the moment, to think about it, over the last 10, 20, 30 years,
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I mean, restaurants are throwing out food like crazy, right? Absolutely, you know, how much waste is there in our country?
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40? Okay, Don Matson actually knows the details and it's 40 % of our food supply is wasted.
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So yeah, you work at Walmart and you're throwing away thousands of dollars of food every week. That's almost half.
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Okay, okay. So here's, let's kind of work this out here. Here in the United States, 40 % of our food is wasted.
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If we were to figure out how to be efficient with it, we could probably feed a lot more people on the planet.
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But nah, we're too worried. So let the people in Africa who had their crops eaten by the locusts, let them die, who cares?
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Well, there you go, yeah.
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Wow, okay, wow, okay.
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Yeah, we don't need welfare, we need food distribution. For, yeah.
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I don't even want to talk about politicians. I think that's the fifth seal here. No, maybe not, but you get the idea.
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So again, famine, food shortages, all of this is part of, these are curses of God on humanity for the rebellion against God.
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And it's been like this for the past couple millennia, has it not? Even before that, there were famines, right?
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All right, so when he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, come and look, and behold, a pale horse.
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And this is not talking about a Clint Eastwood Western, I just want you to know that, okay? Although that was a good movie.
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So a pale horse, and its rider's name was Death, and Hades followed him, and they were given authority over a fourth of the earth to kill with a sword, and with famine, and with pestilence, and by wild beasts of the earth.
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I mean, we see all this stuff on YouTube all the time, right? And I mean, so it's not all of the earth, but at any given time, a percentage of the earth is under this curse, sword, famine, pestilence, wild beasts, yes.
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Yes, so this is a picture of what the age from Christ's ascension until his return looks like, and we're on level number one.
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I like the way you said spiral down, because it does go down. So the next view, and you'll see this in the next sevens, okay, there's gonna be a different look at the same period of time, all right?
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So this is just, this is setting the foundation. Wars, rumors of wars, famine, pestilence, wild beasts, lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my, right?
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All right, so when he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God, and for the witness they had borne.
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Now, real quick here, what, can wild beasts, somebody asked, mean bacteria or viruses?
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Not exactly, no, generally wild beasts are gonna be talking about teeth, things with fangs and claws, and they snarl, and yeah, it's bad in that way.
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Yeah, rabies, natural disasters, right, okay? Things of that nature. Now let me go back through here before I get too far.
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Okay, Pastor Chris, can you please make your screen with the text bigger? I can try, let's see here.
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There, I'll up the Greek just a little bit too, just to, there, all right.
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But he didn't see that one coming, yeah, regarding the guy who had to cancel the prophecy conference due to unforeseen circumstances.
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Got it, okay, good. All right, now real quick, witness, the Greek word for witness, does anyone know what that is?
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You probably have, it's good to remind you. You'll note that part of me teaching is just me being, saying the same things again and again and again.
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We learn through repetition. Okay, for there, and so these are, when he opened the fifth seal,
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I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had born.
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Greek word for witness, martyria, all right? So if you ever wondered, where does the word martyr come from?
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It comes from the Greek word witness, and the idea then is that Christians give the ultimate witness of Jesus Christ by their willingness to lay down their life to proclaim the gospel.
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Let me ask you, are Christians being martyred today on planet
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Earth? Oh yeah, oh yeah, right?
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How well do the Muslims in Pakistan warm up to Christians?
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Off with their heads, right? Yeah, it's no bueno. Yeah, ISIS, is
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ISIS really keen on Christians? No, how about the Chinese government?
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No, not exactly. So you're gonna note here that in the time of Christ's ascension, to his return, there are
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Christians who are bearing witness to God and have been slain.
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Is that SOP, Standard Operating Procedure for the world today? Continues to be.
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Is it not the thing that we are always kind of a little bit anxious about when it comes to politics?
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Because I don't know if you've noticed, but over the last 40 years, there's been a steady march in hostility towards Christianity and those who hold to a
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Christian worldview within the media, within certain sectors of the government, and it's always a little bit of an anxiety thing.
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What if those people actually come to power? What's going to happen to Christian liberty? And of course, the whole
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COVID lockdowns and stuff like that have created some conflict between church and state, all right?
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So those who have been slain for the word of God and for the witness that they have borne, they cried out with a loud voice, oh, sovereign
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Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?
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So no, the saints who've been martyred, their prayer, their petition to God is that their blood be avenged.
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Does God avenge the blood of those who are innocent who have been killed?
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Yes, he does. Absolutely, he does, all right?
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So then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete who were to be killed as they themselves had been.
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That should sober up everybody. But you're gonna note here, they're given a white robe. I kind of like to figure, I figure there's other props missing here.
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They're given a white robe, a chaise lounge, a pina colada. No, it's not that.
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But basically, what are they told? Go ahead and rest. The reason why I say the picture is kind of like that.
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God says, I got this, don't worry about it. You guys are in your rest.
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You go rest for a while, just go rest. Don't worry, it's all gonna happen in its good time. But you're gonna note here, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete who were to be killed as they themselves had been.
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Just wait, you're not all here yet. There's others who need to be killed. What? But Joel Osteen told me that this was all about having my best life now, right?
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That Christianity is not about having your best life now, is it? So wars, famine, peace taken from the earth, wild beasts eating people,
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Christians being slain for their testimony of Christ. Oh, and the number is going to continue to grow and grow and grow.
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Is it any wonder that the theme of Revelation is this theme? Patient endurance.
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From the time of Christ's ascension until his return, the church is called to endure patiently.
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And this comes back to a major theme of Matthew 24. So listen again to what
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Christ says. Many will come in my name saying, I am the Christ. They will lead many astray.
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You'll hear of wars, rumors of wars. See that you're not alarmed for this must take place. The end is not yet. Okay, so you'll note that with the coming of wars and rumors of wars, pestilences and famines and things like this, has the end come?
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No. You're going to note here that this chapter of Revelation folds perfectly with Matthew 24.
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In other words, when you see wars, rumors of wars, famines, pestilence, people being eaten by animals, diseases and things like this, running amok and all this kind of stuff that's going on, you just sit there as a
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Christian and go, yep, everything's the way it's supposed to be already. It's just going to continue to intensify.
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Nation will rise against nation. Kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines, earthquakes in various places.
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All of these are the beginning of birth pains. Yep, just the beginning.
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And again, I love pointing this out always again. The major metaphor regarding all of these turmoils in the world is that these are contractions.
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All right. I always like to point out that I'm still in therapy regarding what happened when my wife gave birth to our children.
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Okay. So I always remember in the early parts of labor, when
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Barb was giving birth to Joshua, our firstborn, you know, they had her hooked up to some kind of a monitor that monitored the contractions.
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And it looked like a Richter scale. I thought that Caltech had put the thing together. And so, you know, I thought
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I was being helpful by saying, oh, here comes a contraction, honey. And she goes, I know, I could feel it already.
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And then one time I made the mistake of saying this. Oh, look, it's a big one.
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My mother -in -law escorted me out of the room and had words with me at that point.
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But all of that being said, these contractions served a purpose. What was the purpose?
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It was because Joshua was going to be born. So all of these turmoils, wars, rumors of wars, famines, earthquakes, kingdoms rising against kingdoms, conquerors and wild beasts and lions and tigers and bears, these are the contractions.
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But what's being given birth to? The new world. The old world is going to die in labor.
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The new world, the earth that will have no end is going to be birthed in this process.
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I have a therapy group if you want to join me on Tuesday nights. You know, we're still working through there.
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Just relax. Yeah, that's not going to work either. I just remember when we first got there, you know,
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Barbara was in the early part and the contractions were pretty mild. And so, you know, they were hooking her up and stuff like that.
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We're thinking, you know, how bad can this be? And the woman in the room adjacent to us, holy smokes,
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I thought they were murdering that lady. She was, and I'm thinking, oh, there's got to be blood on the ceiling and, you know, this kind of stuff.
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And the nurse said, oh, that's nothing. And we're thinking, what have we got ourselves into?
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What have we done? You know, anyway, so you get the idea.
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Okay, you call the midwives. I haven't seen that. So, all right. Then listen to this.
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They will deliver you up to tribulation and they will put you to death. Does this chapter of Revelation regarding the seals being opened, does this not sound exactly like what we're hearing here?
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They will deliver you up to tribulation. They will put y 'all to death. You'll be hated by all nations for my name's sake.
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Yay. Okay. Isn't that just lovely?
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And you're going to note, it doesn't say you'll be sort of kind of disliked.
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You'll be an annoyance. You're going to be hated. How many nations? Oh, every single one of them.
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Every single one. You're going to be hated for my name's sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another.
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Oh, great. That means that people in the church are going to say, that's it. I didn't sign up to be hated by everybody.
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And so what are they going to do? They're going to say, I'm out of here. And not only that, I'm going to turn all you into the authorities.
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Great. Okay. And here's the thing. Jesus told us all of this ahead of time.
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So when this all starts happening and goes down, you sit there and go, everything's going according to plan.
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You see, what did Christ say to that group again here? Rest a while.
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Rest. Rest a little longer until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers who should complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been.
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Just rest a little bit. You're sitting there going, I didn't know why this is what
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I signed up for. I became a Christian. Well, you forgot to read the fine print and that's what
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I'm doing right now. So yeah. Yeah, exactly.
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Oh, the church. Oh, the church was horrifiedly, horrifiedly treated terribly. There is a book that I read on this topic talking about the
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Deutsche Kirche movement, you know, the German church movement. And when the
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Nazis were done with these churches, they didn't have crosses on the altar. They had swastikas.
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And the pyramids all had swastikas in it. I mean, talk about evil beyond all reason. And confessional pastors, they were hunted and martyred.
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You know, and it was a very dangerous thing. Very dangerous thing to confess the faith. Yeah. Yes, of course.
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Yeah. And then you had entire churches who were capitulating to the
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Nazis by getting rid of the Old Testament. Because after all, it's too
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Jewish, you know. And they just kind of omitted the fact that, you know,
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Jesus was, you know, Jewish. You know, the son of David. You know, they just kind of overlooked that part.
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But when you read the autobiography of—oh, what's his name?
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The guy who was the head of the SS. I forget. I've read his—Heinrich
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Himmler. That guy was a nutball, by the way. Believer in the spear of destiny and all that kind of nonsense.
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But Heinrich Himmler, in the—not autobiography, the biography that was written about him probably five, six years ago, he openly admitted that once they had finished exterminating the
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Jews, the next project was to do the same thing to the Christians. That was always the intent of the
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Nazis. It was the Jews first and then the Christians second. Yay.
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So, is this a safe place for Christians to dwell?
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No. All right, no. So just get this nonsense out of your head. But I live in a
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Christian nation. There's no such thing. Yeah, all right.
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All right, so we'll note that the overlap between Matthew 24 and Revelation 6 is huge.
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So, when he opened the sixth seal, I looked and behold, there was a great earthquake. The sun became black as sackcloth.
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Full moon became like blood. The stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit.
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When shaken by a gale, the sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up. And every mountain and island was removed from its place.
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What does this sound like? The end of the world, right? All right, let's take a look at our cross -reference again.
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All right, so, many false prophets will arise and leave many astray. I seem to be obsessed with them.
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This is why we play Prophecy Bingo. I feel a shaking and the Lord's telling me that I'm getting a download right now and that we're experiencing a season of suddenlies.
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Yeah, yeah. All right, many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.
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Well, that's 2020. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
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Patient endurance. And this gospel of the kingdom, it'll be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
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So, when you see the abomination of desolation spoken by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place, let the reader understand, let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.
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Now, this is a part I pointed out recently that steers into a prophecy related to the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem in 70
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AD and the siege of Jerusalem by the Roman army. And so, let the one who is in the housetop not go down, take what is in his house.
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Let the one who's in the field not turn back, take his cloak. Alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days.
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And we noted when we went through this, and this was a few months back, that this was a fulfillment of the prophecy given in the book of Deuteronomy in the curses portion of the
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Mosaic Covenant, talking about how God's judgment on Israel for their persistent unbelief would result in intensifying judgments of God.
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And one of those intensifying judgments in the last part of the curses portion of the Mosaic Covenant included that women would devour and consume their own children.
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That's exactly why Jesus says, alas for women who are pregnant and those who are nursing infants in those days.
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That's why he said that. So, pray your flight may not be in the winter or on a Sabbath, for there will be great tribulation such as not been for the beginning of the world until now, and that will never be if those days had not been cut short.
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And now he's steering back into talking about the tumultuousness of the last of the last days.
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But for the sake of the elect, those days will be cut short. So if anyone says to you, look, here's the
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Christ. I recently covered this on my
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YouTube channel, giving two examples of two men claiming that Jesus was there at their healing events and was on the stage.
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One of them being Benny Hinn. No joke.
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Yeah. And what does Jesus say? If they say to you, look, here he is, don't believe it.
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All right. For false cries and false prophets will arise. They will perform great signs and wonders. So as to lead astray if possible, even the elect.
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See, I've told you ahead of time beforehand. So if they say to you, look, he's in the wilderness, don't go out. If they say, look, he's in the inner rooms, don't believe it.
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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. I don't know if you've noticed that it's a little hard to hide lightning.
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Okay. It's just a little tough. Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.
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You know, we all know how that works too. Have you ever been driving down the highway and you see the vultures and you sit there and go, all right, where's the carcass?
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Yeah, right. It's obvious there's a carcass nearby. The idea here is the coming of the
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Son of Man is as obvious as that. When you see the vultures, you say, they go, oh, Jesus is about to return. And immediately after the tribulation of those days, listen to what
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Jesus says. The sun will be darkened. The moon will not give its light. The stars will fall from heaven.
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The powers of the heavens will be shaken. Has that happened yet?
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Nope. So Matthew 24 and Revelation 6 basically talk about immediately preceding the return of Christ, sun is darkened, moon doesn't give its light, and NASA has nothing left to look at.
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Okay, that's, you sit there and go, my whole career, it's just vanished, right?
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That's kind of the point. The curtain is about to come down because the show is just about over.
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At least the idea of sin, all right? So then they will appear in heaven, the sign of the
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Son of Man, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
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He will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call. They will gather his elect from the four winds from the end of the earth to the other.
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I would note that the trumpet call of the angels makes it impossible for Jesus to return secretly.
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Right? And you'll note that this rules out the whole idea of a pre -trib rapture. It's just nonsense.
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It doesn't fit here because there's a loud trumpet call. Oh, by the way, there's no constellations left, and it's pretty dark outside, and it's the middle of the day.
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You get the idea, all right? All right, now let me back up into questions, and we are going to end here.
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But let me just double check to make sure I haven't missed anything here. Shannon says, my wife had two
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C -sections the first time I looked, the second time I didn't want to look. I'm with you there. I'm, yeah, okay.
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I never knew about these plans to exterminate Christians, too. Makes sense, though, by the Nazis, I mean. Yeah, by the way,
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Lyras, it's in the autobiography, not autobiography, the biography about Heimrich Himmler that was published, again, like five or six years ago.
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It's very plain as day. He explicitly says that the plan was always to exterminate the
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Christians next. It's easy to take things for granted here in the U .S.,
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but my prayers, my prayer is that God would grant me the faith to stand firm, because I know that I don't have the strength in myself to face the persecution that our brothers and sisters have had to face.
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Well, Shannon, that's kind of the whole point, is that none of us have that strength. And so you saying, yeah,
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I pray that I would have that strength, only God can give you that strength. You'll note that you do not have the strength in and of yourself to put to death your sinful passions.
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Your old Adam doesn't want to die. Your old Adam wants to be liked. Your old Adam doesn't want to be hated.
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Your old Adam doesn't want to suffer or be persecuted or die. And so the temptation is always going to come from your old
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Adam to basically say, you know what, if we just get along, we're going to live and we're going to do very well, and people are going to like us, and everything's going to be hunky -dunky, and it's too bad that everybody in my church is dead and the building's been burnt down, but at least
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I'm alive. That's how your old Adam thinks. So you know that the temptation is there. So what do we do?
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You pray to God, God, I don't have this strength. Please, through your Holy Spirit, give me that strength.
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And when you adopt, then, a biblical mindset on these things, Christ says in the
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Sermon on the Mount that when you are persecuted for his name's sake, you are blessed.
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The world says you're cursed. Don't listen to them. They're lying. But when you are persecuted for the sake of Christ, you are blessed.
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So you pray to God, and you say, God, please give me your Holy Spirit to give me strength so that I may endure and help me by faith to embrace what
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Christ has said and to believe the truth that rather than being cursed, that truly I am blessed in the midst of this persecution.
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And that only comes and is only given by God, the Holy Spirit. You don't have that strength in yourself to do that.
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So we'll leave off there, and we'll pick up our study, Lord willing, of Study of Revelation next week.