Category Archives: Examining Every Scripture

Knowing How to Battle – 2 Kings 3:1-27

A Study in 2 KingsThen he went and sent word to Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, saying

“The king of Moab has rebelled against me. Will you go with me to fight against Moab?”

And he said, “I will go up; I am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses.”

He said, “Which way shall we go up?”

And he answered, “The way of the wilderness of Edom.”

2 Kings 3:7-8

 

In this BIBLE study, we will not only be looking at how king Jehoram went about his battle against the king of Moab, but we will also examine the lessons to be learned.

Background:

  • Jehoram (aka Joram) was a son of king Ahab of Israel (2 Kin 3:1), and became king when his older brother Ahaziah died, because Ahaziah had no sons (2 Kin 1:17).
  • Jehoram like his father and brother before him, was an evil king in Israel. He too served idols instead of GOD. Though he did not serve Baal as his father, mother, and brother had. He had the pillar of Baal removed when he became king (2 Kin 3:2). However, he still served the two golden calves that Jeroboam the fifth king of Israel created, causing the whole nation of Israel to sin (2 Kin 3:3).
  • History of the golden calves. Most people know about the golden calf Aaron made for the idolatrous Israelites while Moses was still meeting with GOD on the mountain (Exd 32:1-8). But many do not know about the two golden calves, that Jeroboam created. Though GOD had given Jeroboam the ten tribes living in the northern kingdom of Israel, and promised to make his kingdom endure if he walked upright before HIM (1 Kin 11:26-38). Jeroboam did not trust GOD’s WORDs, and out of fear, sinned as Aaron had, by making two golden calves (1 Kin 12:25-33). After the two golden calves had been created and set up, Jeroboam like Aaron declared the same blasphemous words “behold your gods, O Israel, that brought you up from the land of Egypt” (Exd 32:2-4, 1 Kin 12:28-29).
  • Jehoshaphat the king of Judah was a man who did what was right in the sight of The LORD, like his father Asa and David (1 Kin 15:9-15, 1 Kin 22:41-44). He often inquired of The LORD, and called a nationwide fast, when seeking help from The LORD from Judah’s enemies who were too many and too powerful (2 Chr 20:1-30).

In order to be victorious in the battles we face, we must know how to battle. Which means:

  • Be experienced in warfare → Experience only comes with doing (Before David was a man of war-1 Chr 28:3, he was a protector of sheep-1 Sam 17:33-37). You must practice in order to become experienced (Heb 5:14, Eph 4:13-15, Psa 119:100-102)
  • Have an understanding of the battle you face → Our struggle is not against flesh and blood (Eph 6:11)
  • Be aware of, or be familiar with the tactics of the enemy → Satan is a tempter (Gen 3:1-3, Mat 4:3-11); an accuser (Gen 3:5, Rev 12:10, Zec 3:1-5); a liar (Gen 3:3-4, Jhn 8:44); a deceiver (Rev 12:9, Rev 13:14, 1 Tim 2:14, Gen 3:13); a destroyer (1 Pet 5:8, Jhn 10:10, Jhn 8:44, Luk 22:31)…
  • Know how to win → Do not fight alone (Ecc 4:9-12, Mat 18:19-20, Mrk 6:7-13, Luk 10:1-12); fight with a champion (Isa 42:13, Isa 19:20, Jer 20:11, Jer 15:20-21, Zep 3:17, Rom 8:31)

Lessons Learned in 2 Kings Chapter 3:

  • Choose your Allies wisely (2 Kin 3:7, Psa 46:1-3, Psa 146:3-5, Jer 17:5-8).
  • Do not assume your decision is GOD’s decision (2 Kin 3:8-9, Pro 3:5-6), your thoughts are not HIS thoughts (Isa 55:8-9, 1 Cor 1:27-29). Remember our Beloved LORD GOD gave victory to:
    • Gideon―with trumpets, pitchers and torches (Jug 7:16-23)
    • David―with a slingshot and a single stone (1 Sam 17:40-50)
    • Jehoram―with trenches (2 Kin 3:16-23)
    • Kingdom of Judah―by praise and worship (2 Chr 20:14-22)
  • Do not blame GOD for your circumstances (2 Kin 3:10, 2 Kin 3:13, Num 11:1, Job 1:20-22, Job 2:7-10).
  • Always inquire of GOD first (2 Kin 3:11-13, 1 Sam 9:9, Heb 4:14-16), then you will know when to fight and when to stand (1 Sam 17:46-47, 2 Sam 5:17-25, 2 Chr 20:15); only those with a clean heart can inquire of HIM (1 Sam 28:6, Eze 20:1-3, Isa 59:1-3, Mat 5:23-24↔1 Pet 2:5, Rom 12:1, Heb 13:15-16, Jhn 9:31).
  • Seek GOD’s presence through prayer, praise and worship (2 Kin 3:14-15, 1 Sam 10:5, Psa 100:1-5, Psa 95:2, Php 4:6).
  • Obey HIS WORD (2 Kin 3:24-25) without going too far (Deu 4:2, Deu 12:32, Pro 30:6, 2 Jhn 1:9-11, Rev 22:18-19). The armies led by Israel slaughtered the Moabites (2 Kin 3:24), causing GOD’s wrath to rise against Israel (2 Kin 3:27, Zec 1:15).
  • Know your weakness, and your enemy’s strength (2 Kin 3:26), a hard lesson learned by the seven sons of Sceva (Act 19:11-16), who did not know GOD is our strength (Psa 81:1, Psa 62:7-8, Luk 11:20-22).
  • Do not forget the reason for the battle (2 Kin 3:4-7, 2 Kin 3:27) and do not rejoice over your enemy’s downfall (Pro 24:17-18).

One Taken One Doubly Anointed – 2 Kin 2:1-25

A Study in 2 KingsWhen they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha

“Ask what I shall do for you before I am taken from you.”

And Elisha said, “Please, let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.”

He said, “You have asked a hard thing.

Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you,

It shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.”

2 Kings 2:9-10

In this study of 2 Kings Chapter 2, we will examine two major events which occur, Elijah is taken alive up to heaven and Elisha receives a double anointing of our Beloved LORD GOD’s Holy SPIRIT as his successor. We will also carefully consider several events surrounding the two aforementioned events. But let’s first look at some historical background, to provide more understanding of details that might be missed.  

Background:

Circuit of SamuelSamuel was both a prophet of GOD, and a Judge of Israel (1 Sam 3:19-20, 1 Sam 7:15). He presided over companies of prophets (1 Sam 19:20) who lived in Bethel, Gilgal and Mizpah (the towns which were part of his annual circuit as a Judge―1 Sam 7:16-17) as seen in the attached map.

Elijah who now presided over the prophets in these towns, knew our Beloved LORD GOD was going to answer his prayer to end his physical life (1 Kin 19:4). He was traveling from Gilgal to the other side of the Jordan River (2 Kin 2:1-9), perhaps traveling home to Gilead on the other side of the Jordan to die (1 Kin 17:1, Jug 12:4, Num 26:28-29).

Elisha who had been anointed by GOD to replace Elijah as HIS prophet (1 Kin 19:16), was traveling with Elijah. Elijah became Elisha’s master (boss), at the moment he threw his mantle on Elisha, symbolizing the transference of the power and authority of his ministry to Elisha (1 Kin 19:19).

Points to Consider:

  • Though Elijah tried to talk Elisha out of following him to his death, Elisha refused to leave his master’s side. Elisha, like Ruth who refused to leave Naomi (Rut 1:15-16), and Ittai who refused to leave King David (2 Sam 15:19-22), declared that only death would separate him from Elijah (2 Kin 2:2-6). Each one of us should be this determined to follow our Beloved LORD JESUS CHRIST. We should cling to HIM and HIS WORD the way a belt clings to a waist (Jer 13:11, Psa 119:31, Rom 12:9). As faithful servants we should follow our Beloved MASTER wherever HE goes (Jhn 10:1-9, Jhn 10:27); including death, for HIS NAMESAKE (Rev 12:11, Php 3:7-8, Act 21:13, Mat 16:24-27, Mat 10:37-39).
  • Our LORD makes known HIS plans to HIS prophets (Amo 3:7) and to those who do HIS will (Jhn 15:14-15, Pro 3:32, Psa 25:14, Gen 18:17-19). That is why in 2 Kings 2:1-6, Elijah, Elisha and the prophets who lived in the places they traveled to, knew our GOD was going to take Elijah.
  • When Elijah used his mantle to strike the waters of the Jordan river (2 Kin 2:8), it was the third recorded time our Beloved LORD GOD parted the waters for HIS anointed to walk miraculous through them on dry ground (Exd 14:15-30, Jos 3:5-17, Jos 4:1-24). This powerful work of our Beloved LORD GOD occurred for three reasons. First, it confirmed GOD’s choice of the individual for service (Exd 14:31, Jos 3:7, 2 Kin 2:13-14). Second, it demonstrated that our Beloved GOD is The Almighty to those who didn’t know them (Jos 4:23-24). And third, those who knew HIM, would honor and revere HIM (Psa 76:7, Jer 10:6-7). Just like, HIS people who came before us, HE will not let the waters overflow us (Isa 43:2), take a moment and reflect on and thank HIM for the situation(s) in your life, HE prevented from overtaking you (Psa 18:1-19).
  • When Elisha requested a double portion of the Spirit that was on Elijah be upon him (2 Kin 2:9), he was not asking for twice as much of GOD’s Holy SPIRIT that dwelt on Elijah. He recognized the magnitude of Elijah’s ministry, and was seeking to be qualified to continue Elijah’s ministry with the help of GOD. Remember Elisha was not among the prophets, he was a farmer, out plowing in the field, when his divine call came (1 Kin 19:20-21). Two things, we should consider. First our Precious Savior and LORD JESUS CHRIST can use anyone, as demonstrated by HIS call of Elisha. And two, HE has promised, that each one who trusts in HIM, will carry out HIS mission of preaching The Gospel; not just in Israel but throughout the world (Jhn 14:12-14). Do you trust HIM to go forth in all the world, doing what HE has called you to do? (Mrk 16:15-18).
  • Elijah knew that Elisha’s request to have a double portion of GOD’s Holy SPIRIT was something only GOD could give (Num 11:16-17). And only if GOD allowed Elisha to see Elijah be taken up to heaven, would Elisha’s request for a double portion be granted (2 Kin 2:10). As it was in 2 Kings 2:12.
  • Elijah like Enoch was take to heaven without dying (2 Kin 2:11, Gen 5:21-24, Heb 11:5). Being translated (changed in the twinkling of the eye) will also be experienced by the living faithful at the time of our Precious LORD JESUS CHRIST’s second coming (1 Cor 15:51-52, 1 Ths 4:15-17).
  • GOD gave both witness and confirmation to Elisha. HE gave witness that HE was with Elisha, just as HE had with Moses, Joshua and Elijah before him, by parting the waters of the Jordan River (2 Kin 2:13-15). HE also confirmed Elisha’s new ministry when the leaders of Jericho came to him for help (2 Kin 2:19). Our GOD confirmed Elisha’s ministry through two symbols and a miracle (2 Kin 2:20-22). A new jar containing salt. The new jar symbolized, the new ministry bestowed on Elisha; the salt symbolized a binding and eternal union between our Beloved LORD GOD and HIS prophet (Lev 2:13, Num 18:19-20, 2 Chr 13:5↔2 Sam 7:12-16). Furthermore, The WORD of GOD in the prophet’s mouth purified the waters, symbolizing the salt in the new bowl. Is your faith united to HIS WORDS bringing you eternal life (Heb 4:2), or does unbelief keep you in darkness, destined for death?
  • Elisha’s new ministry was challenged by both the godly, and the ungodly:
    • The godly (the prophets) challenged Elisha’s ministry, questioning his insight (2 Kin 2:16). Elisha saw Elijah taken up to heaven, so he knew the prophets would not find him. But instead of standing firm on what our Beloved LORD had made known to him, he allowed them to shame him into giving approval to go and seek for Elijah (2 Kin 17-18). Has our Beloved LORD GOD revealed something to you, that instead of standing firm and trusting HIS WORD, you gave in to the crowd?
    • The ungodly (a large number of young men) mocked Elisha as he was leaving Jericho (2 Kin 2:23). Our Beloved LORD GOD confirmed Elisha’s ministry twice, yet, this ungodly group followed him with mocking and harsh words. When Elisha turned and cursed the ungodly men (2 Kin 2:24), it was not because of his pride, but their disrespect of our GOD and HIS WORD (Jud 1:14-16). Those who persist in mocking GOD’s WORD and HIS messengers will eventually suffer GOD’s wrath and death (2 Chr 36:15-16). Those who speak harsh things against GOD in ignorance are forgiven (Heb 5:2, Heb 9:7, Act 17:30-31, 1 Tim 1:13), but when it is done with knowledge of WHO GOD is; it is blasphemy and brings death (Eze 20:27, Eze 18:24, Mrk 3:28-29↔Jhn 4:24, 1 Cor 3:16, Rom 8:9-10, Jhn 14:23).

 

Then we who are alive and remain

Will be caught up together with them in the clouds

To meet The LORD in the air

And so we shall always be with The LORD

1 Thessalonians 4:17

Seeking Others Instead of GOD – 2 Kin 1:1-18

A Study in 2 KingsAnd Ahaziah fell through the lattice in his upper chamber which was in Samaria
And became ill, so he sent messengers and said to them
“Go, inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron whether I will recover from this sickness”
But the angel of The LORD said to Elijah the Tishbite
“Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria and say to them
‘Is it because there is no GOD in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron?’
“Now therefore thus says The LORD, ‘you shall not come down from the bed where you have gone up
But you shall surely die'” Then Elijah departed
2 Kings 1:2-4

In this BIBLE study we will look at the consequences of seeking others instead of GOD, both in the Scriptures and today.

At first glance, 2 Kings 1:1, appears to be a random thought when compared to verses in the rest of the chapter. But for those of us who know our Beloved LORD GOD, we also know, HE does nothing nor says anything random. Our GOD is Spirit (Jhn 4:24), and HE gives us spiritual instruction for our daily lives (Rom 15:4, 2 Tim 3:16-17). This instruction comes through HIS WORD (The BIBLE). Since HIS WORD is spiritual, it cannot be fully understood with human reasoning. Only by HIS Holy SPIRIT, combining spiritual words with spiritual thoughts (1 Cor 2:9-16, Jhn 14:26) can we fully comprehend what HE is telling us. Prayerful examination of 2 Kings 1:1 reveals:
 The name Moab is used interchangeably with Moabites (Gen 19:37). The Moabites are Lot’s direct descendants (Gen 19:30-38). Lot’s firstborn daughter sought counsel within herself and did not trust GOD. Based on her own understanding, she feared she and her younger sister would die childless, ending their family line. So they acted in an unthinkable manner, reasoning incest was the only way to protect their lineage. Their behavior is a lesson for us today, proving why we must trust in our Beloved LORD GOD and not ourselves (Pro 3:5). Our understanding is limited. It is based on what we see, or what we think we know. Trusting in self instead of GOD is foolish (Pro 12:15), and leads to death (Pro 14:12).
 Since Moab is Lot’s direct descendant, he is a cousin to Israel, as demonstrated in the following chart.
cousins2
Moab’s great fear of Israel’s vast numbers depleting their resources (Num 22:1-4), also caused them to seek counsel within themselves, instead of trusting GOD. And in doing this, they not only disregarded family ties, but sought out Balaam (a diviner from Mesopotamia) to curse Israel (Num 22:5-7, Deu 23:3-6, Jos 13:22). Moab’s unfounded fear caused them to become enemies of Israel, continually at war with them (Jos 24:9-10) until King David. King David fulfilled prophecy spoken through Balaam (Num 24:17), when he defeated Moab, killed two thirds of their army, made servants of one third, and collected tribute from their King (2 Sam 8:2). Moab remained servants to Israel, paying tribute until after King Ahab’s death and the injury of his son King Ahaziah (2 Kin 3:4-5). Moab’s rebellion against Israel and its consequences will be discussed more fully in 2 Kings, chapter 3. Through Moab we are given another lesson, if Moab had trusted GOD and HIS counsel, they would have learned their fear would not happen. GOD had already protected them (Deu 2:9, 2 Chr 20:10-12). So instead of remaining under HIS protection, they ended up digging and eventually falling into the very pit they had planned for Israel (Pro 26:27, Pro 28:10, Est 7:10, Zep 2:8-9).

In 2 Kings 1:2-4 we read King Ahaziah has injured himself by falling through the lattice of a window in his upper story room. He sends out messengers to get a prognosis from a false god of the Philistines in their city of Ekron (2 Kin 1:2). In doing this, he adds sin to his sin (Isa 30:1-5). Ahaziah lived a very sinful life, he not only worshiped Baal and Asherah like his wicked parents King Ahab and Queen Jezebel (1 Kin 22:51-53), he also worshiped the golden calves Jeroboam had made (1 Kin 12:26-32). Ahaziah’s wicked heart kept him from seeking the true GOD in Israel, which led to his death (2 Kin 1:3-4). Could you be facing hard times and disappointment, because you do not trust in, or seek our Beloved LORD GOD (Jer 13:22-25, Jer 16:10-13, Jam 1:6-8)?

In 2 Kings 1:5-6 the prophet Elijah intercepts the messengers before they reach Ekron, and gives them the message from our Beloved LORD GOD (2 Kin 1:3-4). The messengers immediately return to the King. When Ahaziah inquires why the messengers returned, they give him the message from Elijah, “you shall surely die” (2 Kin 1:4). This is a warning to all who refuse to seek or even acknowledge the GIVER of both physical and eternal life (Isa 31:1-3, Rom 1:28-32).

In 2 Kings 1:7-8 when Ahaziah questioned the messengers about who had given them the message, they described what Elijah was wearing. Ahaziah knew it was him immediately, and sent to take him by force. Just a final observation before moving on, describing what Elijah was wearing in verse 8, not only helped Ahaziah recognize it was the prophet Elijah. But it also confirms our Precious JESUS CHRIST words about the identity of John the Baptist (Mat 11:14, Mat 17:11-13, Mrk 9:11-13), as prophesied by Malachi (Mal 4:5-6), confirmed by Gabriel (Luk 1:11-19), and demonstrated by John’s choice of clothing (Mat 3:4, Mrk 1:6).

In 2 Kings 1:9-12 Elijah’s response to the 51 men sent the first two times, might seem harsh, as he called fire down from heaven, killing them. But you must consider the following:
 Ahaziah like his deceased father King Ahab and mother Queen Jezebel, were enemies of Elijah, as he had prophesied all their deaths (1 Kin 21:1-29). Ahaziah’s contempt for Elijah and The GOD he served was reflected in his behavior. Instead of being moved to repentance of his sins and seeking The LORD, he sent a group of 51 soldiers to bring him by force (notice a command not an invitation was given in 2 Kin 1:9).
 The second group of 51 soldiers who came to take him by force, demanded Elijah “come down quickly” (1 Kin 1:11). Showing that Ahaziah like pharaoh refused to recognize Elijah as the servant of the true GOD in Israel; even though fire from heaven attested to it (1 Kin 18:21-24, 2 Kin 1:10). This second time when fire fell from heaven and consumed 51, it emphasized GOD’s sovereignty and HIS protection of HIS servants (1 Chr 16:21-22).
 When Kings didn’t like the messages of true prophets, they sought to silence them through imprisonment (1 Kin 22:26-28, Jer 37:15-21) or death (2 Chr 24:21-22, Neh 9:26, Jer 26:23). In fact, Ahaziah’s deceased mother years earlier had threatened to kill Elijah for killing her prophets (1 Kin 19:1-3).

In 2 Kings 1:13-16 Elijah went with the third group of 51 soldiers because their captain did not come commanding or demanding, but instead came humbly. This captain recognized the position of authority Elijah held as the servant of the true GOD in Israel, and he sought that the lives of his men, and himself would be spared. The Angel of The LORD telling Elijah to go with this captain to Ahaziah, demonstrates Elijah did not act on his own, the two previous times. And we also recognize that the heart of Ahaziah had been humbled to hear The WORD of GOD and not kill HIS prophet.

In 2 Kings 1:17 Ahaziah dies according to The WORD of The LORD, which Elijah had spoken. His brother Jehoram became King of Israel in his place, since Ahaziah had no sons (2 Kin 3:1).

Are you seeking others instead of GOD? Our Beloved GOD is the Wonderful Counselor (Isa 9:6, Job 12:13, Psa 32:8, Pro 8:14, Jer 32:17-19). And HE forewarns us about putting our trust in men (Jer 17:5-6, Psa 146:3) and seeking the counsel of the wicked (Psa 1:1). Wicked counselors include disobedient friends (Psa 119:113-115), idols (Jer 10:1-5), astrologers (Isa 47:13-14), psychics and necromancers (Isa 8:19-20), fortune tellers (Isa 44:25), or witches (Isa 47:9). The counsel of the ungodly will always bring death (1 Chr 10:13-14).

This also comes from The LORD of hosts
Who has made HIS counsel wonderful
And HIS wisdom great
Isaiah 28:29

We Are Not Doing Right – 2 Kin 7:1-16

A Study in 2 KingsThen they said to one another
We are not doing right
This day is a day of good news
But we are keeping silent
If we wait until morning light, punishment will overtake us
Now therefore come
Let us go and tell the king’s household
2 Kings 7:9

As we continue our BIBLE study in 2 Kings, we look at four lepers and the events surrounding them in 2 Kings 7:1-16. We will also consider how the lesson the lepers learned, applies to us today.

Four lepers lived outside the city of Samaria (2 Kin 7:3-4), in accordance to our Beloved LORD GOD’s LAW concerning leprosy (Lev chapters 13 and 14). In Leviticus 13:45-46, we learn that lepers were required to live outside of populated areas, and warn others from a distance not to come close to them. We see this commandment carried out with the separation of Miriam (Num 12:10-15), King Uzziah (2 Chr 26:16-21) and ten leprous men standing outside a village where JESUS was about to enter (Luk 17:11-14).

It may seem harsh that GOD’s LAW required lepers to be separated from the general population, but leprosy is a disease that can be transmitted person-to-person through close and repeated contact through nose and mouth droplets (sneezing or coughing) from someone who has untreated leprosy. Truly our GOD is compassionate, and we see HIS kindness to lepers through our Precious LORD JESUS. When JESUS came into contact with lepers, HE did not avoid them HE met them right where they were:
 When a man covered with leprosy fell on his face at JESUS feet and begged JESUS, saying, ‘”LORD if YOU are willing, YOU can make me clean.” JESUS moved with compassion stretched out HIS hand and touched the leper, saying to him, “I am willing, be cleansed.” (Mrk 1:40-44)
When JESUS was in Bethany, HE went to the house of Simon the leper and dined with him (Mrk 14:1-3, Luk 7:36-50)
 JESUS testified to John the Baptist’s disciples about the miracles taking place during HIS ministry, including the cleansing of lepers (Mat 11:2-6)

The four lepers in this BIBLE study were starving to death because of the severe famine in Samaria (the capital of Israel). This famine was caused by the Aramean army (army of modern day Syria) besieging, or completely surrounding the city (2 Kin 6:24). This besiegement prevented any help from getting in, or people getting out. The lack of food was so severe that the Israelites living inside Samaria were eating unclean animals, dove dung (bowel movement), even their children (2 Kin 6:25-29).

The four lepers discussed their options for dying or living (2 Kin 7:3-4). They decided to surrender themselves to the Arameans, where the possibility of surviving the famine existed (2 Kin 7:5). They did not know their decision was part of a plan our Beloved LORD GOD, The Victorious Warrior (Zep 3:17) was carrying out (2 Kin 7:6-7), to fulfill HIS WORD through the mouth of HIS prophet Elisha (2 Kin 7:1).

The four lepers went to the camp of the Arameans, and found it abandoned. They satisfied their hunger and thirst with the drink and food that had been left behind. Afterwards, they made two trips between where they lived and the Aramean camp, to hide the silver, gold and clothes also abandoned (2 Kin 7:8). By the third trip our Beloved LORD GOD convicted their consciences, making it known “what they were doing was not right,” and they would be punished if they continued (2 Kin 7:9). The four lepers responded to the conviction by immediately going to the gatekeepers of Samaria and announcing the good news (2 Kin 7:10), thus our Beloved LORD GOD saved the people of Samaria from completely perishing (2 Kin 7:11-16).

Like the four lepers who were saved from death, every Christian has been given Good News (Rom 10:14-15). Are you doing what is right? Are you sharing The Good News with the weak, the lost, and the dying of the world (Mat 24:14, Mat 28:18-20)? Are you receiving from GOD but never giving to others? (Luk 6:38, Mat 7:2, Mrk 4:24-25) Have you become a fat sheep? (Eze 34:17-22)? If you are not doing what is right, then you have blood on your hands (Act 20:26-27, Eze 3:16-21, Eze 33:1-9). Why? Because it is not our Beloved LORD GOD’s desire for any soul to perish (2 Pet 3:9). Therefore HE sends HIS servants forth with The GOOD NEWS that saves souls (Isa 52:7). Every Christian is responsible for their part in reaching the lost, making disciples, serving the body of our Precious CHRIST JESUS (Rom 12:4-8, Eph 4:11-13). If you are not doing your part, consider that you like the four lepers have been warned about punishment overtaking you, if you continue in wrongdoing.

And having shod YOUR FEET
WITH THE PREPARATION OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE
or
For shoes
Put on the readiness to preach The Good News of peace with GOD
Ephesians 6:15

Preach The WORD
Be ready in season and out of season
Reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction
2 Timothy 4:2

But sanctify CHRIST as LORD in your hearts
Always being ready to make a defense
To everyone who asks you to give an account
For the hope that is in you
Yet with gentleness and reverence
1 Peter 3:15

The LORD’s Work

Work of The LORDTherefore
My beloved brethren
Be steadfast, immovable
Always abounding in the work of The LORD
Knowing that your toil is not in vain in The LORD
1 Corinthians 15:58

Many of the BIBLE studies I share have come from one-on-ONE studies with our Beloved LORD GOD. It is HE that taught me to examine The Scriptures (1 Ths 5:21). I absolutely love studying my ABBA FATHER’s WORD with HIM! HE’s taught me not to skim over or speed-read the Scriptures, but to read each one carefully, paying particular attention to things HE points out to me. I date, highlight, and notate in my BIBLE what HE has pointed out during that time of study. And then I reflect or meditate on what I have learned, and ask HIM to help me carefully walk in what HE has taught me. It’s during this process, HE writes HIS WORD upon my heart.

Why must one read each Scripture carefully? Because of the absolute importance of each word. We must never forget we are looking upon the very WORDS of Almighty GOD (2 Tim 3:16, 2 Pet 1:20). We must grasp that HE is sharing HIMSELF (Jhn 1:1, Jhn 1:14, 1 Jhn 1:1-3). We must fully understand that by HIS WORD all of creation was spoken into existence (Psa 33:6, Heb 11:3). We should know it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for the smallest Hebrew letter to fail (Isa 55:11, Luk 16:17). And we must carefully consider the weight our Beloved LORD GOD places on both HIS WORDS (Deu 8:3, Mat 4:4) and ours (1 Sam 2:3, Mat 12:36-37, Mat 15:15-19, Eph 4:29, Jam 3:2).

In the opening paragraph I described the process of examining the Scriptures. And we are going to do just that in this study. We will be examining 1 Corinthians 15:58. I would like to first share with you that the foundation Scripture (which is always located just below the graphic) is laid out how The Holy SPIRIT of my Beloved LORD GOD points it out to me. The Scripture centered on a line-by-line basis in The BIBLE study is highlighted with different colors for each line in my BIBLE. 1 Corinthians 15:58 was broken down by The Holy SPIRIT in 5 parts, drawing particular attention to each of the following parts:

1) Therefore
2) My beloved brethren
3) Be steadfast, immovable
4) Always abounding in the work of The LORD
5) Knowing that your toil is not in vain in The LORD

Therefore is used as a conjunctive adverb, the conjunctive part refers to something previously stated, and the adverb provides a greater description. Instead of using “therefore” one could say; that because something happened; as a result of this or that; for this or that reason. By starting at verse one of 1 Corinthians chapter 15, our Beloved LORD GOD through the apostle Paul lays out the doctrine of resurrection and a solid hope for believing it. With this very first word “therefore” In 1 Corinthians 15:58 Paul then provides the incentive for, and the way we should carry out our service for The LORD.

My beloved brethren, this word of encouragement is to incentivize those who hear it. It is not for everyone. It is only for those who do the will of our Beloved LORD GOD from the heart (Mrk 3:35, Eph 6:6, 1 Pet 4:2, 1 Jhn 2:17). For those who will take part in the first resurrection (Rev 20:5-6), also known as the resurrection of the righteous (Luk 14:14, Act 24:15), or the resurrection of life (Jhn 5:29, Dan 12:2).

Be steadfast, immovable. Be steadfast in heart, and immovable in faith. One who is steadfast in heart is one whose heart is firm, fixed, settled or established. Circumstances or indefinite time periods do not cause them to lose heart (Luk 18:1-8, 2 Cor 4:1-18), or give up from discouragement (Isa 40:30-31, Gal 6:9, 2 Ths 3:13, Heb 12:3).
       One who is immovable in faith is one who truly knows GOD (Jhn 10:14, Jhn 14:23, 1 Jhn 2:3-6, 1 Jhn 4:6-8). Their faith in HIM cannot be shaken, it is not even capable of movement. Because they know HE cannot lie (Num 23:19, Tit 1:2, Heb 6:18), HE is faithful (Deu 7:9, 1 Cor 1:9, 2 Tim 2:13) and all HIS WORDS are faithful (Psa 119:86, Psa 119:89-90, Psa 119:138) and will not fail (Isa 55:10-11, Luk 16:17). Their faith in HIM is not just for others, but also for themselves (Psa 9:18, Pro 13:12, Jam 1:2-4).

Always abounding in the work of The LORD. “Always abounding” means to not just be engaged, but to be highly productive; to excel in; to be diligent; to always have a willing heart (2 Chr 31:21, Col 3:23-24).
       The work of The LORD is to always be engaged in doing the will of our Beloved LORD GOD (Jhn 4:34), in every single thing we do (Col 3:17, Jam 2:26). Which means our daily walk through the power of HIS Holy SPIRIT is one that brings glory (Psa 115:1, 1 Pet 4:11) and thanksgiving to our Precious LORD JESUS CHRIST (Act 3:8-9, 2 Cor 1:11, 2 Cor 9:10-15), advancement of HIS Kingdom (Act 20:24-27, Rom 10:14-15, 1 Cor 3:6-9, 2 Tim 4:1-5), service to both the brethren (Eph 6:18, Col 1:25, Heb 13:17, 3 Jhn 1:5-8) and all mankind (Php 2:14-15, 1 Tim 2:1-4, Heb 13:1-3, Heb 13:16).

Knowing that your toil is not in vain in The LORD. Knowing is to have a deep conviction through experiencing the truth and faithfulness of GOD (Job 42:5, 2 Pet 1:16-19).
       It is only then that you will be fully convinced (2 Tim 1:12), that your toil (labor; deed; actions) is not in vain (fruitless; unprofitable; without effect; futile) ― Php 2:16, Isa 49:4, 1 Ths 3:5
       “In The LORD” is a key phrase in this sentence. If JESUS CHRIST is not your LORD & SAVIOR, and you do not have HIS Holy SPIRIT dwelling in your heart; than all you do profits you nothing (1 Cor 13:1-3, 1 Jhn 4:16), and everything seems vain to you, as demonstrated by the disobedient King Solomon (Ecc 1:1-2, Ecc 12:8).

Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of The LORD
The farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil
Being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains
You too be patient
Strengthen your hearts, for the coming of The LORD is near
James 5:7-8

Buy Truth and Do Not Sell It

Hands raised in WorshipBuy truth, and do not sell it,
Get wisdom and instruction and understanding.
Proverbs 23:23

In the opening passage (Pro 23:23) we will carefully consider our Beloved LORD GOD’s instructions to:
    1) Buy truth
    2) Do not sell truth
    3) Get wisdom and instruction and understanding

In examining what it means to “buy truth” we must first get an understanding of what truth is. The English word “truth” was transliterated from the Hebrew word “’emeth“ (OT:571), and as a noun it means a fact that is unchanging, faithful, reliable, established, and verifiable. It is also used of testimony, divine instruction, and true doctrine (Psa 19:7-9, Psa 119:88, Exd 24:12, Rom 15:4, Mat 28:19-20, Jhn 7:16-18). Truth:
 is The WORD of GOD (Psa 119:142, Psa 119:151, Jhn 17:17)
 is Eternal (Psa 119:89-91, Psa 119:152, Psa 119:160, Isa 30:8, Isa 59:21)
 is Pure (Psa 12:6-7, Psa 19:8-9, Psa 119:140, Pro 30:5)
 will not fail (Isa 55:11, Isa 46:10, Zec 1:5-6, Luk 16:17, 1 Pet 1:23-25)

How do you buy truth? Before we answer that question, let us stop and remind you that The WORD of GOD is spiritual, and our study of HIS WORD concerns spiritual matters. HIS Truth is spiritual, and it cannot be acquired through physical means, as demonstrated in three separate examples:
    1) A fool denies the existence of GOD (Psa 14:1) or believes in GOD but does not believe HE sees and knows (Psa 10:11, Psa 94:7, Isa 29:15, Eze 8:7-12), and then tries to acquire spiritual wisdom (the knowledge of Truth – Pro 17:16), which comes from the very GOD he denies (Job 38:36, Pro 2:6, Jam 1:5).
    2) A magician in Samaria who tried to use physical money to acquire a spiritual gift (Act 8:4-24)
    3) False prophets, depraved in mind and deprived of the truth, think godliness is great gain for them (1 Tim 6:5), not understanding that godliness is not for physical profit but spiritual profit (1 Tim 6:6-10).

To “buy Truth” is to receive or accept Truth HIMSELF by faith (Jhn 14:6, Jhn 3:16, Rom 10:9-10), to be spiritually sealed by The SPIRIT of Truth (Jhn 14:16-17, Jhn 16:13-15, Eph 1:13), which is from The GOD of Truth (Psa 31:5, Isa 65:16). The purchasing or receiving of spiritual truth comes only to one who is willing to give up all to know Truth (Mat 13:45-46, Mrk 10:17-22, Luk 14:25-33, Php 3:7-14).

Why would one sell truth, when they gave up everything to acquire it? For at least four reasons; doubt, fear, discouragement and desire.
    Doubt is to be uncertain, to stop trusting or believing. As an example, our Beloved GOD had given John the Baptist information about our Precious LORD & SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST. HE identified WHO JESUS was and the purpose HE served (Jhn 1:26-36). John stood firm in that knowledge (Jhn 3:26-30), until he was jailed (Mat 11:2-6). And then he begin to doubt, to the point of causing him to begin to distrust what he once knew, and WHOM he believed and trusted in. How do we know this, by the message JESUS sent back through John’s disciples. “And blessed is he, who does not take offense at ME” (Mat 11:6). The English word “offense” in Matthew 11:6, is transliterated from the Greek word “skandalizoo” (NT:4624) and according to Thayer’s Greek Lexicon (Abridged) it means to cause a person to begin to distrust and desert the one whom he ought to trust and obey.
    Fear is to be afraid of what might happen, causing many to abandon our Beloved LORD JESUS CHRIST and HIS WORD. It can be fear of loss (Luk 17:31-33, Jhn 9:18-23, Jhn 12:42-43), fear of suffering (Job 3:25, Mat 13:20-21, Mat 24:9-10, Heb 10:32-39), or fear of death (Mat 10:28, Rev 2:8-11).
    Discouragement is to lose confidence or hope; to be sad, depressed, or low in spirit; to lose heart (Psa 13:1-4, Psa 119:81-88). When one does not truly know or trust our Beloved LORD GOD, that HE is compassionate and merciful (Exd 34:6, Psa 111:4, Psa 116:5), or they do not know HE forewarned us that following HIM would not be easy (Mat 10:16-39, Act 14:21-22, 2 Tim 3:12), they become discouraged (Ecc 7:10, Exd 16:2-3, Deu 8:3).
    Desire (lust) is to have a strong wish or craving for immediate temporal (physical) gratification. There are many who long for the temporal things offered in the physical world (Mat 13:22, 1 Tim 6:17-19, 1 Jhn 2:15-17). They are not willing like Moses to trade the short-term physical for the long-term eternal (Heb 11:24-26), instead like Esau they are willing to lose the greater reward to satisfy the flesh immediately (Gen 25:29-34). Short-term focus will always eventually lead to mourning loss of long-term reward (Gen 2:30-38, Heb 12:16-17, Luk 13:23-28).

Each one of us who have received the Truth in our innermost beings (Psa 51:6), must not sell it at any cost. We must choose to suffer the loss of all temporal (physical) interests, rather than abandon, deny or neglect the truth within us. We must guard truth by carefully considering our ways (Pro 14:16, Pro 19:16), and not neglecting the study of it (1 Chr 16:11, Pro 8:34, Luk 11:3), the testimony of it (Deu 32:1-4, Psa 26:7, Psa 92:2-4, Isa 63:7), nor revolt or turn from it (2 Tim 4:3-4, Heb 6:4-6). We must cling to our GOD (Deu 10:20, Deu 11:22) and hold fast HIS WORD within our hearts (Psa 119:31-32, Pro 4:4). We must not grow weary in doing good (Gal 6:9), or doing the things which are pleasing to our GOD (Rom 12:2, Eph 5:10, 1 Pet 1:14-16).

Why has GOD also instructed us to get wisdom, instruction and understanding? Because receiving Truth is the beginning of your spiritual life. But you must also grow to maturity, and maturity only comes through practice (Heb 5:14). And practice means continually living a life obedient to The WORD of GOD (1 Jhn 3:7-8). Living an obedient life in addition to getting wisdom, instruction and understanding can only happen through the presence and power of The Holy SPIRIT. It is The SPIRIT of GOD which gives:
Wisdom, the knowledge and the ability to make the right choices at the opportune time (Job 38:36, Psa 51:6)
Instruction, the discipline that teaches how to live correctly in the fear of The LORD (Psa 32:8, Isa 28:26)
Understanding, the ability to clearly grasp the meaning of what HIS WORD is telling you (Job 32:8, Pro 2:6)

Hear, O sons, the instruction of a FATHER,
And give attention that you may gain understanding,
For I give you sound teaching;
Do not abandon my instruction.
When I was a son to my father,
Tender and the only son in the sight of my mother,
Then HE taught me and said to me,
“Let your heart hold fast my words;
Keep my commandments and live;
Acquire wisdom! Acquire understanding!
Do not forget nor turn away from the words of my mouth.
“Do not forsake her, and she will guard you;
Love her, and she will watch over you.
“The beginning of wisdom is: Acquire wisdom;
And with all your acquiring, get understanding.
Proverbs 4:1-7

Shaking Off the Dust

shake dust from feet 2Whoever does not receive you

Nor heed your words

As you go out of that house or that city

Shake the dust off your feet

Matthew 10:14

What is the significance of “shaking the dust off the soles of your feet”? To “shake off the dust” is a vivid gesture. But before we tell you why, let’s look at three Major Prophets in the Old Testament where our Beloved LORD GOD used vivid gestures to send a profound message:

  • Isaiah followed GOD’s instructions to walk around naked and barefoot for three years as a warning sign to Egypt and Ethiopia, that the people of these two countries  would be led away in nakedness and shame, as captives and exiles by the King of Assyria (Isa 20:1-6).
  • Jeremiah followed GOD’s instructions to purchase a lined waistband and wear it around his waist, symbolizing the closeness of Israel to GOD. But then GOD instructed him to remove the linen waistband and go and hide in the crevice of a rock. After much time has passed, he was then instructed to retrieve that linen waistband that had been ruined; symbolizing that the nation of Israel like the waistband, was once of great value, but because of their sin and idolatry had become like the waistband, ruined and totally worthless (Jer 13:1-11).
  • Ezekiel followed GOD’s instructions to pack a bag that he would carry over his shoulders with bare necessities. He was to carry this bag out in daylight, so the Israelites would see him carrying it. He was then called to dig a hole through the city wall with them watching, and that night with them watching, he would go out of the city through the hole he had dug in the wall, carrying the bag on his shoulders. When the Israelites asked him what he was doing, he was instructed by The LORD GOD to tell them what all he was doing symbolized (Eze 12:1-16).

The very act of “shaking the dust off your feet” is a vivid gesture symbolizing:

  • The testimony that will go against those given GOD’s message but rejected it (Mar 6:11, Luk 9:5). Those rejecting GOD’s message will be held responsible for their conduct (Pro 19:16, Eze 9:9-10, Eze 14:21-23).
  • GOD’s impending judgment ― since their rejection of the messengers and the message of repentance, essentially cut them off from receiving mercy and salvation (Matt 10:14-15, Luke 10:1-16)
  • Renunciation ― or formally refusing to associate with further; as well as rejecting any responsibility for (Acts 18:4-6, Eze 33:6-9, Act 20:26-27)

Under what circumstances should one “shake the dust off your feet”? When a person(s) completely rejects The WORD of GOD; often with hostility (aggressively, angrily, or unfriendly), as demonstrated by the following verses:

Job 21:14-15

“They say to GOD, ‘Depart from us!

We do not even desire the knowledge of YOUR ways.

‘Who is The ALMIGHTY, that we should serve HIM,

And what would we gain if we entreat HIM?’

Isa 30:9-11

For this is a rebellious people, false sons, sons who refuse to listen to the instruction of The LORD; Who say to the seers, “You must not see visions”; And to the prophets, “You must not prophesy to us what is right, Speak to us pleasant words, prophesy illusions. “Get out of the way, turn aside from the path, let us hear no more about The Holy ONE of Israel.”

Jer 11:21-23

Therefore thus says The LORD concerning the men of Anathoth, who seek your life, saying, “Do not prophesy in the name of The LORD, so that you will not die at our hand”; therefore, thus says The LORD of hosts, “Behold, I am about to punish them! The young men will die by the sword, their sons and daughters will die by famine; and a remnant will not be left to them, for I will bring disaster on the men of Anathoth — the year of their punishment.”

Acts 18:5-6

But when Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul began devoting himself completely to The WORD, solemnly testifying to the Jews that JESUS was the CHRIST. But when they resisted and blasphemed, he shook out his garments and said to them, “Your blood be on your own heads! I am clean. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”

1 The 2:14-16

For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of GOD in CHRIST JESUS that are in Judea, for you also endured the same sufferings at the hands of your own countrymen, even as they did from the Jews, who both killed The LORD JESUS and the prophets, and drove us out. They are not pleasing to GOD, but hostile to all men, hindering us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved; with the result that they always fill up the measure of their sins. But wrath has come upon them to the utmost.

2 Tim 4:3-5

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

What is the instruction for dealing with one who is not openly hostile in their rejection of GOD’s WORD, in fact periodically comes to Church? We have been first called to examine ourselves (Psa 26:2, Luk 6:41-42, Gal 6:1-3). Secondly, we are instructed to observe their behavior (Mat 7:15-20, Luk 6:46-45). Finally with gentleness we are called to correct them as demonstrated by 2 Tim 2:24-26:

The LORD’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome

but be kind to all

able to teach

patient when wronged

with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition

if perhaps GOD may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth

and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil

having been held captive by him to do his will

How do you correct someone within the Church who continues to walk in sin, because they reject GOD’s Truth? Our Beloved LORD GOD tells us in:

Mat 18:15-17

“If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother.  “But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that BY THE MOUTH OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES EVERY FACT MAY BE CONFIRMED.  “If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

What does it mean in Matthew 18:17 “let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector”? It means to avoid, or do not associate with them (2 The 3:6-7, 2 The 3:14-15, 1 Cor 5:1-13). Sin is like leaven or cancer, it spreads (Gal 5:7-9), and corrupts those who associate with the willful disobedient (1 Cor 15:33).

What is the instruction for dealing with one who causes dissension (separation or problems) in the Church? We have been given clear instructions in the following verses:

Rom 16:17-19

Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. For such men are slaves, not of our LORD CHRIST but of their own appetites; and by their smooth and flattering speech they deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting.

Tit 3:10-11

Reject a factious man after a first and second warning, knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned.

2 Jhn 10-11

If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.

But should we really reject them? Shouldn’t we pray for them? Our Beloved LORD GOD is pretty clear in HIS instructions in the aforementioned Scriptures:

  1. turn away from them (Rom 16:17)
  2. reject a factious man – a man who causes dissension (Tit 3:10)
  3. do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting (2 Jhn 10)

Again the reason for rejecting one who is intent on causing dissension, is to stop the spread or growth of dissension in the body. We have not only witnessed the impeding of Church growth, we have even seen Churches destroyed from the division allowed to fester and grow within the body. Our Beloved LORD JESUS has called HIS body to live in unity (Psa 133:1, Eph 4:1-3, Col 3:12-14), harmony, being of the same mind (Rom 15:5, Rom 12:16, 2 Cor 13:11, Php 2:2, 1 Pet 3:8), and love (Rom 12:10, 1 Pet 1:22, 1 Pet 4:8). In fact HE tells us the world will know we are HIS disciples, by our love for each other (Jhn 13:35).

And yes we should pray diligently for them until HE tells us to cease praying for them.

Would GOD really tell you to quit praying for someone? Absolutely, as demonstrated in Jeremiah 7:1-16, and Jeremiah 14:10-12. Our GOD is very merciful and patient, not wanting anyone to perish (2 Pet 3:9), but after many warnings and call to repentance, there will be finally judgment/punishment (2 Chr 36:15-17, Jer 7:25-26, Jer 25:3-11, Luk 11:49, 1 Cor 4:11-13).

The one who listens to you listens to ME

And the one who rejects you rejects ME

And he who rejects ME

Rejects The One who sent ME

Luke 10:16

Revelation 17:14

revelation-17-14In examining this particular passage of Scripture, the following 9 questions arise:

1)      Who are “these” that will wage war against the Lamb?

2)      Who is the Lamb?

3)      Why will they wage war against the Lamb?

4)      How will they wage war against the Lamb?

5)      Why is the Lamb called “Lord of lords and King of kings”?

6)      What is meant by “those who are with Him”?

7)      Who are the called?

8)      Who are the chosen?

9)      Who are the faithful?

During the following examination of this passage, the 9 questions will subsequently be answered.

Who are “these” that will wage war against the Lamb? When examining any Scripture it is always important to read up and read down from The Scripture, to understand the context in which The Scripture is being used. This first question will allow us to do just that.

We get more information about “these” in Rev 17:14, when we read up to Rev 17:12-13; where we are told “these” are ten horns which represent ten kings, who have one purpose “to give their power and authority to the beast (aka the antichrist). Our Beloved LORD GOD gives us more detail about these ten kings in Dan 7:7-8, and Dan 7:19-26. These ten kings are part of the kingdom of the antichrist. The kingdom of the antichrist is the final earthly kingdom that our Beloved LORD JESUS CHRIST will destroy at HIS return (Dan 2:34-35, Dan 2:44-45, Rev 11:15-17), along with the antichrist, the false prophet (2 Ths 2:8-9, Rev 19:19-20, Rev 20:10), and the antichrist’s power (Dan 7:26).

The final earthly kingdom, is the fourth kingdom our Beloved LORD GOD revealed to Daniel during a dream and visions (Dan 7:1-8). This fourth or final earthly kingdom is an extremely wicked one. It is dreadful, terrifying, and powerful, with no regard for life (Dan 7:7). It will rise during the final days of earth’s history (2 Pet 3:1-13). And in the last of the last days (the final, and most sinful days of earth), the antichrist will rise to power (Dan 8:23-25, 2 Ths 2:3-4), with the help of the ten kings previously mentioned. This earthly kingdom of the antichrist will have worldwide domination (Dan 7:23), and will wage war with The LAMB across the entire globe.

Who is the Lamb? HE is none other than The LAMB of GOD, our Beloved LORD JESUS CHRIST (Jhn 1:36, 1 Pet 1:19), WHO came to earth to take away the sins of the world (Mat 1:21, Jhn 1:29, 1 Jhn 3:5, Rev 5:5-10, Rev 7:9-17).

Why will they wage war against the Lamb? Because Satan, demons, the antichrist, all those who refuse to believe that JESUS is The CHRIST, the ungodly, and those who are disobedient to The WORD, are all enemies of our Beloved ABBA FATHER and HIS SON JESUS CHRIST. The war that began in Heaven (Rev 12:7-9) will be completed with the:

  • final rebellion on earth (Rev 20:7-11, Eze chapters 38 and 39)
  • destruction of the current heavens and earth (Rev 20:11, Rev 21:1)
  • destruction of death and hades (Rev 20:14, 1 Cor 15:25-26)

How will they wage war against the Lamb? The enemies of our Beloved ABBA FATHER and HIS SON JESUS CHRIST, will wage war against The LAMB by waging war with HIS faithful followers, the saints (Act 9:1-16, Dan 7:21, Dan 7:25, Dan 11:32-35, Rev 12:17, Rev 13:7-10).

Why is the Lamb called “Lord of lords and King of kings”? Because as GOD, HE has the ultimate authority (Jhn 1:1, Jhn 1:14, Isa 9:6, Mat 1:23, Jhn 8:58, Jhn 14:8-9, Jhn 20:28―1 Chr 29:11, Job 42:2, Psa 145:9-13, Dan 4:34-35, Rom 13:1-2, 1 Pet 5:10-11); and as The LAMB and SON of GOD, HE has been given all authority (total dominion) until HE destroys all authority except GOD’s (1 Cor 15:24-28, Dan 7:13-14, Mat 11:27, Mat 28:18, Jhn 3:35, Eph 1:20-22, Php 2:9-11, Col 2:10, 1 Pet 3:22, Rev 19:11-16).

What is meant by “those who are with Him”? It is a reference to those faithful followers of JESUS CHRIST who are continually in HIS presence (Jhn 10:3-5, Psa 23:1-6, Jer 2:1-2, Rev 14:4). They have an intimate relationship with HIM, because they consistently cling to HIM (Deu 13:4, 2 Kings 18:1-6, Psa 119:31, Rom 12:9) and obey HIS WORD in all circumstances, under all conditions (Rom 8:35-39, Rev 12:11).   

Who are the called? The “called” is everyone. We have all been “called” or “invited” by GOD HIMSELF to receive salvation, as demonstrated by the parable of the King’s wedding feast for his son (Mat 22:1-10). Note in Mat 22:1-7, the King first invites his own (those he knew personally). And then in Mat 22:9-10, he invited everyone both good and bad. It is not our Beloved ABBA FATHER’s desire for anyone to perish (Eze 18:23, Eze 18:32, Eze 33:11, Jhn 3:17, 1 Tim 2:4, Tit 2:11, 2 Pet 3:9).

Who are the chosen? The “chosen” are those who not only accept our Beloved LORD GOD’s invitation to salvation, but also accepts HIS call to be clothed or walk in holiness (Rev 3:14-20, Isa 1:18, Psa 51:7-10, Isa 43:25, Isa 44:22, Act 3:19-20). As cited from “Jewish New Testament Commentary”, kings would sometimes give banquets for their subjects and invite them all, regardless of status, providing suitable clothing for those unable to afford it. Therefore the one not wearing what the king had provided was without excuse, as demonstrated by the speechlessness of the guest in Matthew 22:11-14. Our Beloved ABBA FATHER provides the garments of holiness, but we must accept and wear them (Isa 61:10-11, Zec 3:3-5, Rev 19:8).

Who are the faithful? The “faithful” are those who are steadfast (Psa 112:7, Pro 11:19, Isa 26:3, 1 Cor 15:58), reliable (Mat 25:14-30), and trustworthy (1 Cor 4:1-2, Luk 12:42-44, 1 Cor 9:16-17). They endure (Mat 24:12-13, Mrk 13:13, 1 Cor 4:11-12, 2 Tim 2:12, Jam 5:11), persevere (Jam 1:12, Luk 6:22, Luk 8:15, 1 Pet 3:14-18, Rev 14:9-12―Rev 13:7-18), cling to GOD and HIS WORD (Deu 13:4, Psa 119:31, Rom 12:9), stand firm (1 Cor 16:13, Eph 6:11-18, 1 Ths 3:8), and keep the faith at all times (2 Tim 4:7).

In closing, ask yourself are you among, the called, chosen and faithful? If you have accepted our Beloved LORD GOD’s invitation to salvation, yet you refuse to obey HIS WORD fully, you are only among the called.

The WORD of The LORD which came to

Zephaniah son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Amariah, son of Hezekiah

In the days of Josiah son of Amon, king of Judah

“I will completely remove all things from the face of the earth,” declares The LORD.

“I will remove man and beast; I will remove the birds of the sky, and the fish of the sea,

And the ruins along with the wicked

And I will cut off man from the face of the earth,” declares The LORD.

“So I will stretch out MY hand against Judah, and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

And I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the names of the idolatrous priests along with the priests.

“And those who bow down on the housetops to the host of heaven,

And those who bow down and swear to The LORD and yet swear by Milcom,

And those who have turned back from following The LORD,

And those who have not sought The LORD or inquired of HIM.”

Be silent before The LORD GOD!

For the day of The LORD is near,

For The LORD has prepared a sacrifice, HE has consecrated HIS guests.

“Then it will come about on the day of The LORD’s sacrifice, that I will punish the princes, the king’s sons

And all who clothe themselves with foreign garments.

“And I will punish on that day all who leap on the temple threshold,

Who fill the house of their lord with violence and deceit.

Zephaniah 1:1-9