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ADVENTIST LAYMEN'S FOUNDATION OF CANADA (ALF)

Publisher of the
"Watchman, What of the Night?" (WWN)
.
- 1970s
- 1980s
- 1990s
- 2000s

All the Specials and Commentaries are in the last file of the year. There are 4 files for each year: jm=Jan-Mar; aj=Apr-Jun; js-=Jul-Sep; od=Oct-Dec

WWN is a thought paper that was published monthly continuously from Jan, 1968 to the end of Dec. 2006 . by the Adventist Laymen's Foundation of Mississippi, Inc.(ALF), with William H. Grotheer as the Editor of Research & Publication.

The Nov. 1977 issue discusses "What is the "Watchman, What of the Night?"

SHORT STUDIES - William H. Grotheer -
"Another Comforter", study on the Holy Spirit
1976 a Letter and a Reply: - SDA General Conference warning against WWN.
Further Background Information on Zaire -General Conference pays Government to keep church there.
From a WWN letter to a reader: RE: Lakes of Fire - 2 lakes of fire.
Trademark of the name Seventh-day Adventist [Perez Court Case] - US District Court Case - GC of SDA vs.R. Perez, and others [Franchize of name "SDA" not to be used outside of denominational bounds.]

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Manuscripts

Interpretative History of the Doctrine of the Incarnation as Taught by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, An
- William H. Grotheer

Bible Study Guides
- William H. Grotheer

End Time Line Re-Surveyed Parts 1 & 2 - Adventist Layman's Foundation

Excerpts - Legal Documents
- EEOC vs PPPA - Adventist Laymen's Foundation

Holy Flesh Movement 1899-1901, The - William H. Grotheer

Hour and the End is Striking at You, The - William H. Grotheer

In the Form of a Slave
- William H. Grotheer

Jerusalem In Bible Prophecy
- William H. Grotheer

Key Doctrinal Comparisons - Statements of Belief 1872-1980
- William H. Grotheer

Pope Paul VI Given Gold Medallion by Adventist Church Leader
- William H. Grotheer

Sacred Trust BETRAYED!, The - William H. Grotheer

Seal of God
 - William H. Grotheer

Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956
 - William H. Grotheer

SIGN of the END of TIME, The - William H. Grotheer

STEPS to ROME
- William H. Grotheer

Times of the Gentiles Fulfilled, The - A Study in Depth of Luke 21:24
- William H. Grotheer

Remembering
Elder William H. Grotheer

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BOOKS OF THE BIBLE

Song of Solomon - Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary

OTHER BOOKS, MANUSCRIPTS & ARTICLES:

Ten Commandments - as Compared in the New International Version & the King James Version & the Hebrew Interlinear

Additional Various Studies --
"Saving Faith" - Dr. E. J. Waggoner
"What is Man" The Gospel in Creation - "The Gospel in Creation"
"A Convicting Jewish Witness", study on the Godhead - David L. Cooper D.D.

Bible As History - Werner Keller

Canons of the Bible, The - Raymond A. Cutts

Daniel and the Revelation - Uriah Smith

Facts of Faith - Christian Edwardson

Individuality in Religion - Alonzo T. Jones

"Is the Bible Inspired or Expired?" - J. J. Williamson

Letters to the Churches - M. L. Andreasen

Place of the Bible In Education, The - Alonzo T. Jones

Sabbath, The - M. L. Andreasen

Sanctuary Service, The
- M. L. Andreasen

So Much In Common - WCC/SDA

Spiritual Gifts. The Great Controversy, between Christ and His Angels, and Satan and his Angels - Ellen G. White

Under Which Banner? - Jon A. Vannoy

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Due to his failing health, Elder Grotheer requested that ALF of Canada continue publishing thoughts through its website www.AdventistAlet.com which now has developed into frequent Blog Thought articles plus all of the Foundation's historical published works written and audio.

As of 2010, with the official closing of the ALF of USA , The Adventist Laymen's Foundation of Canada with its website www.Adventist Alert.com is the only officially operating ALF branch established by Elder Grotheer worldwide.

We are thankful for the historical legacy that is now available through

The Adventist Laymen's Foundation of Canada, 1526 Haultain Street,
Victoria, BC V8R 2K4 Canada

Tax deductible receipts are still given for all gifts as usual.

To Support
Donate

The MISSION of this site -- is to put the articles from the thought paper "Watchman, What of the Night?" in Essay form. It is not our purpose to copy WWN in whole.

Any portion of the thought paper may be reproduced without further permission by adding the credit line - "Reprinted from WWN, Adventist Laymen's Foundation of Canada."

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Blog Thoughts
by Raymond A. Cutts
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Marriage of the Lamb
Revelation 19:7-8 says “the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen: for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.” The question is, who is “the bride,” and what is “the marriage?” This is a vast field for thought. Revelation 21:9-10 says “I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife. And he … shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God.” Therefore in this instance the bride is the city [holy, new Jerusalem], and the marriage is an event [the time of the city descending from heaven to earth]. The city is astronomical in size, 21:6 says the “city lieth four square … twelve thousand furlongs [each of three dimensions] … length and the breadth and the height of it are equal;” thus we see a cube shape with a square base with each of its three dimensions 1378.4 miles. Also, the thickness of the walls as stated in verse 17 “the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and four cubits,” is about 220 feet thick. However, Revelation 19:7 says of the bride “his wife hath made herself ready,” thus personifying the city, giving life and action to an inanimate object. For it says further on this personification of the city in verse 8, “she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints;” this shows that an uninhabited city would be a very dreary place for God to dwell in. Also, it is said that the raiment [righteousness of the saints] “to her was granted;” she is granted children of God from all generations, many times more populated than the old Jerusalem. So, as to the “marriage of the Lamb,” also look at Ephesians 5:23 “For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church;” illustrating the marriage union between Christ and His people, showing that the church is also “the bride” of Christ in this figure used. In conclusion, in the “marriage of the Lamb” the “bride” is both, the city of New Jerusalem and the inhabitants of it.

Forever and Ever Burning?
Revelation 19:3 says “her smoke rose up forever and ever.” This is speaking of the false religious theories making up the “great whore” of what is called Babylon [Babylon, the site of the Tower of Babel and initiator of the confusion of all things]. Over the centuries thousands of sermons have been preached on the subject of a “forever burning hell” as the way of getting people to repent of sin and obey God. The Bible language does portray and imply an eternity of suffering, but let us remember this is borrowed language and we need to compare all verses of Scripture to come to correct understanding on the subject. Going back to the first and original text referring to the subject of “forever burning hell fire” let us look at Isaiah 34. Under the figure of Idumea and it’s destruction, the texts say “dust thereof into brimstone” and “the land thereof shall become burning pitch” verse 9, “the smoke thereof shall go up forever” verse 10. The language here must be limited, for Idumea represents the desolation and depopulation of the earth with purifying fire immediately prior to Christ’s second coming, for the chapter opens in addressing the entire earth. And now turning to Revelation 14:10-11 the same language is used “tormented with fire and brimstone … and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever,” this is the torment of the worshippers of the beast, his image and final destruction of Babylon the Great [Mother of Harlots]. These are end-time events just before Christ’s coming to earth the second time. But, as to the fire burning forever and ever we must look back to the original use in Isaiah 34 and ask “is the fire still burning?” The fire burns until all the fuel for it is expended, thus bringing utter and final destruction; the smoke goes up as long as there is anything remaining of the curse to burn. Then, Satan is chained here on a vacant earth by the chain of circumstances with nobody to tempt for 1000 years.

The Golden Chain – Man By Christ To God
Christ’s humanity means everything to us, binding our souls to God through Christ as our Mediator. This golden chain and a thorough understanding of it, needs to be the study of every Christian. The first link in this chain is “the mystery of God, and of the Father and of Christ” Colossians 2:2 but what kind of “mystery?” In “The Vocabulary of the New Testament” by Moulton and Milligan, quoting on “mystery” the same word is used throughout the New Testament states the sense of mystery is “not a thing which must be kept secret. On the contrary, it is a secret God wills to make known…to those who have ears.” So, as to the mystery of the incarnation of Christ it is a subject God wants us to understand properly, and it is the most marvelous thing which ever took place on earth. John 1:14 says “the Word [Christ, God the Son] was made flesh and dwelt among us;” He was one of the self-existent persons of the God-head who has existed from all eternity and Who lowered Himself into another form - humanity. The transition is a fact, but unfathomable for our minds, especially when we read in Luke 1:35 about Mary, “The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee.” This transition was a painful process, as explained by Paul in Philippians 2:6-7 Christ “thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.” “To make empty” is the definition for “no reputation,” Christ did empty Himself in taking not only humanity, but suffering, fallen humanity, degraded and defiled by 4000 years of sin, the humanity of a slave in bondage to sin, “the form of a servant.” He reached down to man in the lowest form possible to be the Redeemer of all humanity. Many theologians draw back at this thought, and wonder, if Christ took this form of humanity how could He not sin? But, in this form of humanity, He did not sin, and showed us the way to salvation, by having the Spirit dwelling within, to do His good will. Thus, man, by Christ to God; the Golden Chain. By Christ living in fallen human nature, He felt the strength of natural human passions toward sin, but through the Spirit in Him, He overcame sin.

The Father Does It All
Jeremiah 8:5 “Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? And Jeremiah 6:16 “Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the way, and walk therein and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.” Since the beginning of the 20th Century these texts have been fully played out by the march of Protestantism back into the fold of the traditions and dogmas of papal Rome. One example of this is the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception and variations thereof. We find God having difficultly in producing a righteous people with obedience to His Law due to weakness of human nature; and so sent His Son Jesus to live the life of a human in the same human nature as those He came to redeem. As it says in Romans 8:3 “what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin [margin: by a sacrifice for sin], condemned sin in the flesh.” Christ, our High Priest, is no superhuman that has no feeling of human trials, He shared fully our temptations in the same way you and I do, BUT he never sinned. This is related to us in Hebrews 4:15 “we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” This is the mystery and marvel of God, God manifest in the flesh. But we need to shake off the fallacies of papal dogmas that we cling to. Think on this, if Christ did not take the same human flesh with its weaknesses as those He came to redeem, then in reality there was no reason for Him to be made flesh at all. The only human flesh in this world for Him to assume is sinful, fallen and degraded human flesh. For, if Christ had some special human nature, it was not of this world, and could in no way be tempted like you and I. But, He did come like you and I and overcame sin and the devil in our human nature; what a marvel and mystery it is. His humanity was dependent upon divine power to overcome sin the same as you and I; as said by Jesus in John 5:30 “I can of mine own self do nothing;” and also in John 14:10 “The Father that dwelleth in Me, He doeth the works.”

Our God in Duality
Zechariah 6:13 says “he [Christ] shall build the temple … and he [Christ] shall bear the glory … and he [Christ] shall be a priest upon his throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both [Christ – God the Son and God the Father];” literally in the Hebrew it says “between the two of them.” Where in this scenario is the Holy Spirit as part of the God-head? We know that there is the Spirit, for it is God’s omnipresence. In the New Testament the Spirit is the Third Person of the God-head where we are told to baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. However, in John 4:24 it says “God is a Spirit,” but in the Greek text there is no definite article “a,” so it should read “God is Spirit.” Looking back at the opening text, Zechariah mentions God as two persons – dualism; and also Zechariah 13:7 “the man that is my fellow [Christ – God the Son], saith the Lord of hosts [God the Father].” Now looking at the beginning of the Bible, Genesis 1:1 “In the beginning God [Hebrew - Elohim] created;” “El” in Hebrew is “God;” “Elohim” is the plural of “God,” but how many persons? Deuteronomy 6:4-15 houses what is called “The Shema of Israel” which literally reads “Jehovah our Gods is one God,” the words “our God” [Elohenu – is the masculine plural]. Take note that it is masculine, no feminine indicated for God. For reference see “Elements of Hebrew” by Wm. R. Harper, page 144. The word “one” as in “one God” is “echad” which expresses the thought of - oneness in duality. This word “echad” is the same word used in Genesis 2:24 Adam and Eve became “one flesh” [oneness in duality]. The Spirit of God has always been, but became a separate entity and individual at the incarnation or birth of Jesus, because for Jesus as God in human form, He lacked His omnipresence. For this reason, after His crucifixion, death and resurrection, Christ had His final forty days on earth with His disciples, after which He said to them that the only way the Holy Spirit could come was for Him to depart to heaven. The omnipresence of Christ in the form of the Holy Spirit, the Third Person of the God-head, was needed for the furtherance of the Gospel to the “uttermost part of the earth” [Acts 1:8]. We now worship God, one God in three persons, not a trinity [a triune being – one God with three heads] but three individuals with one name, one aim and purpose.

The Magi Followed His Star
The Magi, the three wise men, as they are commonly called, were actually Kings from the eastern area of the Roman Empire There names were Melchior, Caspar [Gaspar] and Balthasar; these distinguished visitors brought gifts fitting for a King, gold, myrrh and frankincense, very costly indeed for a poor family. These Kings were great philosophers, and were great lights for the true God among the darkness of heathenism, and practiced astronomy [the study of celestial bodies], not astrology [divinations with regard to astronomy]. In their study they saw a mysterious light in the heavens growing as it came closer to earth, it was not a planet or star, but in truth it was the angels of the heavenly host coming to earth to announce the birth of a King. Seeking knowledge in the Hebrew Scripture they came upon the writings of Balaam, a one time prophet of God, where in Numbers 24:17 he said “there shall come a star out of Jacob, a Scepter shall rise out of Israel.” They followed the star and it stopped for a time over Jerusalem. Entering the city with questions in Matthew 2:2 “where is he that is born king of the Jews…we have seen his star.” Nobody, not even at the temple did anybody seem to have any answers; but it aroused excitement. This excitement roused King Herod to seek counsel and answers from his priests as to the prophecies of the Messianic King [Matthew 2 tells the story]. Herod privately entertains the Magi, wherein Herod directs them to Bethlehem, as he had learned from his priests. Verse 9 says “they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them,” to announce the Saviors’ birth to the shepherds [Luke 2 tells this story]. In verse 9 “the angel of the Lord [Gabriel] came to them and the glory of Lord [the angelic star] shone round about them,” and verse 11 “unto you is born this day … a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” In verse 21 “when eight days were accomplished for the circumcision … and the days of her purification according to the law [according to Leviticus 12:2-4, her purification period is 40 days] …they brought him to Jerusalem,” where he was dedicated to the Lord and this was witnessed by Simeon and the prophetess Anna; after this Joseph, Mary and Jesus went on to Egypt. Matthew 2:13-14 Joseph is warned in a dream of Herod’s plot and told to flee to Egypt, but has to wait for the 40 day purification, then go to Egypt via Jerusalem for the dedication of Jesus. The Magi were in Bethlehem with the shepherds at the birth of Christ, not approximately two years later. Jesus was taken to Jerusalem and on to Egypt immediately after Mary had completed her purification period, forty days after the birth, according to the law.

Willing To Die For Others
In Deuteronomy 3:21-29 we find Moses at Mount Pisgah pleading on behalf of Joshua. Moses knows that God has called for his life and denied him entry into the Promised Land, saying in verse 27 “thou shalt not go over this Jordan.” Looking on all his experiences as leader of God’s people, one wrong act marred a perfect record, and for this God would not allow him to set foot in the Promised Land. Moses confessed his sin and begged for pardon, and was assured of it as we read in Luke 9:30-31 at the transfiguration of Christ “behold there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias [Elijah]: who appeared in glory.” It is a solemn thought for us today, when we in spiritual matters say “is God that particular, does this spiritual point really matter?” God is the Author of the minute and finite details, look into nature, His Tabernacle services or His dealing with individuals such as Moses. Moses died for the sake of his people Israel, but Christ died for the sake of the entire world and all generation of it; however, they both died fulfilling the same law of divine justice. It is the same when a mother is willing to sacrifice her life for that of her child, the same, but only in a different measure. One of the greatest of the Presidents of the United States of America, Abraham Lincoln, applied these same verses of scripture to himself as willing to die for the freedom of all his people. This he did just prior to his assassination at the end of the Civil War. Paul Chiniquy, a very spiritual man and a close friend of Lincoln, in his book “Fifty Years in the Church of Rome,” brings out the details of numerous assassination attempts on Lincoln’s life. Remember, Christ willingly died that others that they, and we may live here and in eternity.

Was Christ Exempt?
Hebrews 4:15 says of Jesus, “have we not an high priest [Jesus Christ] which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” In Christ’s human nature was He created any different from any other child of Adam, or was He created exempt from normal temptations to sin? The text above says No! He was tempted like you and I “in all points;” “all” means no exceptions. Jesus said of Himself, in His human nature, that just like you and I, of ourselves we can do nothing, being born in a sinful, fallen human nature, as He said in John 5:19 and 30 “the Son can do nothing of himself,” and “I can of mine own self do nothing.” As a man Christ could be tempted to sin, but only through the Holy Spirit working in Him could he work the works of God, and as said in Hebrews 4:15 live as a man “without sin.” Christ also had to learn obedience to God as any other child; as it says in Hebrews 5:8 “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” Ask yourself the question, if Christ was exempt and could in no way sin as a human, why did He have to learn obedience and why did Satan even bother trying to tempt Him to sin? Christ is our Savior, but He lived the life of a man as our example to follow. So, when we look at Christ’s birth or His human nature, to imagine Him taking the human nature of Adam before the Fall in Eden, or on the other hand, taking the dogma of an immaculate conception puts Christ totally out of the realm of our humanity and exempts Him from temptation to sin. Believing either of these theories gives you and me an excuse to sin in breaking God’s Commandments; also to look on Christ as our example to live by within the scope of these theories, is just ludicrous and absurd. This type of teaching is very dangerous to our salvation and is a doctrine of our enemy Satan, taught to lead us astray from God’s Word. Just as the Holy Spirit dwelt in Christ making Him able to live a perfect, spotless life in sinful human flesh, so we, by faith in Christ and His Spirit in us can do the same and follow His example. This is why it says in Colossians 1:27 “Christ in you the hope of glory.”

War Between the Bible and Atheism
Revelation 11:1-13 spans the period of time of the war between the Bible and Atheism, the time period given is spoken of in verses 2 and 3 in two different ways, first “forty two months” and secondly “a thousand and threescore days.” Take the day for a year principle of prophecy and the Jewish month of 30 days, makes 42 months and equals 1260 days/years; and the period spoken of is 538 A.D. [the year of supreme Papal power] to 1798 A.D. [the year the Pope was taken captive by the French Army and died in captivity, a temporary ending to the Papal power]. Now, in verses 3, 4 and 10 it talks of “two witnesses,” “two olive trees,” “two candle sticks” and “two prophets;” all these sets of two refer to the witness, light and messages of the Old and New Testaments, God’s Word. In verse 3 we are told that the Word of God, His two witnesses, prophesy in “sackcloth and ashes” for this1260 years period; “sackcloth and ashes” denoting the agony and misery in which the Word of God was taken [church traditions in many cases suppressed and contradicted the Bible nullifying its witness]. The culmination of the time period is that of the French Revolutionary era [Nov. 1793 A.D. – Jun. 1797 A.D.]. This is a period of 3 ½ years as spoken of twice in verses 9 and 11. The city called “Sodom and Egypt” in verse 8, both referred to because of the great amount of fornication and licentiousness practiced, points to Paris, France at the height of the Revolution, parading the harlot on a throne through its streets as “the Goddess of Reason” [a replica of it brought from France to the U.S.A. as “the Statue of Liberty”]. During this time in France, the Bible was outlawed and the churches were closed to worship, and the cry in the streets of Paris was “Crush the Wretch” meaning Christ. Of a truth this was the other place, as said in verse 9 “where our Lord was crucified;” it was the darkest period in French history without the light of God’s two witnesses. The spirit of Atheism, “the beast … of the bottomless pit” as said in verse 7 was in reality poured out upon this nation with a vengeance in this war between the Bible and Atheism.
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Ye are gods!
The Bible says in Psalm 82:6 “I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the Most High;” this same thought Jesus brought forth in John 10:34. The text says we are to be “children of the Most High,” adopted into the heavenly family; and it also says we are to be “gods,” but not “Gods.” Thus, we are to partake of the divine nature within our human nature, which, in reality is simply conversion, by accepting God’s Spirit [the Holy Spirit] we are born again, re-created by God. This is what Nicodemus found so hard to understand, how being born anew meant having divinity uniting with humanity thus perfecting the character of man. When Jesus lived on earth, His humanity was united with divinity; His human nature had the indwelling of the divine nature through the Holy Spirit. So, when in John 14:30 He said “the prince of this world [Satan] cometh, and hath nothing in Me,” His automatic reaction to temptation to sin was never yielded to or even given the slightest thought. This is how it is to be with us, by having the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Living as a human, Christ condemned sin in human flesh by the Holy Spirit working within Him; Romans 8:3 says “God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.” Moses, as a human being, was a type of Christ, in that He was the intercessor between God and Israel. And, so much so, that after Moses had met with God, he had to veil his face, because after being in God’s presence he had taken unto himself so much of the divine nature that he had become clothed with the brightness of heaven, but the people could not endure to look upon him; Exodus 34:29 says of Moses “the skin of his face shone.” So it is for us, the closer we come to God, the clearer our understanding of God and His Law, and conformity to His image in partaking of His divine nature in our human nature; and in the end beings “gods.” As we are promised in 2 Peter 1:3-4 “his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness … that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature;” [“if thou art a member of His body, then thou art full of the divine nature” – D’Aubigne book 12, ch. 2]

Awake, - Stay Awake!
Ministers and people wake up! The cry in Isaiah 58:1 is verily needed today, “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgressions and …sins.” God is waiting for His people to wake up to the solemn responsibilities of God’s closing work to be done. There are few Christians who have the needed heart to heart closeness with God. Conversion is the grace of Jesus, when He wakes up one of His children [conversion] – it is a miracle of God called grace! It is imperative for that child of God not to fall asleep again [fall back into sin]! Falling into sin is to be in spiritual darkness. Isaiah 5:20 tells us “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness.” (See also John 3:20, Proverbs 4:19) When it is dark we cannot see to follow Jesus “withersoever He goeth” (Revelation 14:4). We are in blindness to our wretched spiritual condition and we do not ask God for healing because we do not realize our spiritual need. We are in the same condition as the Laodiceans in Revelation 3:14-22 thinking ourselves to be spiritually “rich and increased with goods, and in need of nothing.” 1 John 1:5 says “God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all” and John 8:12 says “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness.” When Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane, He desired for His disciples to be awake with Him. That night, the sins of the world were placed upon Him; He felt the agony of a sinful condition set upon His shoulders causing a separation from His Father. He prayed that this cup [the world’s sins] should pass from His lips, but instead said to His Father in Matthew 26:39 “nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.” He was experiencing the heaviness of sin and its darkening effects. His disciples could not stay awake even though our Lord aroused them twice. Jesus desired for them to pray for grace to stay awake and avoid being tempted into sin’s darkening clutches. Today, Jesus still desires us to stay awake (spiritually) and pray. The “time of trouble” spoken of in Daniel 12:1, the troublesome time for God’s people just prior to Christ’s return, will be due in part with His children struggling to stay awake amidst the strong delusions that keep the whole world in darkness as said in Matthew 24:24 “false Christs, false prophets…shew great signs and wonders.”

Christian Standards, Pharisaic?
The most neglected doctrinal area within Christianity is that of the Christian standards of living and obedience to God. Reluctance to write or vocalize on this subject is due to two reasons: first, is the fear of offending the greater majority of Christians who live and act far below God’s standard; and secondly, the fear of being labeled as legalistic, judgmental and lacking love for your fellow man. Satan revels in exploiting this area, presenting those who stand up for truth as fanatics, and causing the church to forego any discussion on the subject of Christian standards as improper or extremist. In the book of Romans we see that Paul had an ongoing problem in this area, especially coming from a Judaic training background as a Pharisee, where strict legalism on all the different laws was of prime importance. The Pharisaic idea of “being in the world but not of the world” is right, but they took it to the extreme of keeping God’s truth to themselves; we are to be pilgrims, living examples of the Christian standards on earth. Also, with regard to the laws of God, strictness is important, but only to the point where we understand that it is Christ working in us that avails us of obedience to God and nothing we do of ourselves. Obedience and righteousness are the automatic fruits of a soul converted to Christ, but remember it is a day to day growth. The perils within the church today are the same faced by the Apostles - traditions, philosophy, higher criticism, all of which destroy faith in Scripture making God’s Word into a lamp without oil and leading down forbidden paths into confusion. God says in Psalms 19:8 and 15:5 “The statutes of the Lord are right,” and “he that doeth these things shall never be moved.” So, when pondering these man-made theories and falsely adopted church traditions, bring to mind what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 3:11 “Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid.” God set the standards, and Christ came to work in us to keep up His standards; all we need to do is constantly ask “what would Jesus do?”
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Sound the Trumpet!
In the book of Revelation we find series of sevens - “seven churches” [Revelation 2 and 3] symbolically referring to the seven stages in historical order [some overlapping]; then of “seven seals” [Revelation 6, 7 and 8], with the breaking of each seal, also following stages through Christian history; and finally another set of historical happenings through the Christian era in the form of “seven trumpets.” In prophecy a “trumpet” is a symbol of war or battle; so the “seven trumpets” of Revelation 8, 9 and 11 are the history of battles during the Christian era. The prophetic symbol of the “trumpet” as war is shown throughout the Bible. Jeremiah 4:19 “Thou hast heard, O my soul, the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war;” 1 Corinthians 14:8 “For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle;” Ezekiel 7:14 “They have blown the trumpet, even to make all ready; but none goeth to the battle;” and Joel 2:1 “Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain.” The Papacy grew out of apostasy from true Christianity, then it was fostered by the Roman Empire [an empire that spanned the then known world] by creating a union of church and state [a church having political might of state power], and the state at that time had become an imperial despotism. How much spiritual freedom does any person have living in this condition? The fall of the Roman Empire and the end of the Papacy is all portrayed under the history of the “seven trumpets.” The first four trumpets portray historically the succession of mighty tides of armies from the north, Alaric, Genseric, Attila and Odoacer. The fifth trumpet shows the might of Mohamed in the Islamic Invasions; and the sixth trumpet the battles under the four Sultanates of the Ottoman Empire. The “seventh trumpet” is the final battle of God Almighty, Armageddon. Bible history is an awe inspiring subject when tied in with secular history, and then you see the workings of God through all time. Remember “history” is really “His story.”

Perfection and Holy Flesh
Jesus says to us all, in Matthew 5:48 “Be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” The thought of perfection, living a sinless life, holiness or holy flesh, has been a battle of wits for centuries with theologians, so much so that some have carried it to utter extremes on both ends of the spectrum. Acknowledgement of Christ as your personal Savoir, accepting Him into your heart to recreate you into His image is conversion to Christianity, and the first step is baptism as the outward sign to the world that you are a different person with an inward transformation of your thinking. In all of this, Christ is the one within us working our thinking and actions, to do His good will. But, this does not mean that we cannot be tempted and fall backward, we still have the power to choose which way to go; this is why Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15:31 “I die daily,” because being in a saved condition is a daily, moment by moment battle of choices. Holiness and holy flesh came into controversy around Hebrews 10:5 “A body hast thou prepared Me.” One end of the spectrum intimates from this text, that Christ had holy flesh and could not sin. The only human flesh in history that felt no sin was that of Adam and Eve before they fell into sin. The nature of Adam changed completely when he was expelled from Eden and could no longer eat from the “tree of life” which gave immortality. Adopting this position of understanding contradicts what Paul stated earlier in Hebrew 2:14-17 “he took not the nature of angels; but took on him the seed of Abraham [Abraham is long after Adam]. Wherefore, in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren [not his brother Adam, but “brethren” indicating it must be after the time of Adam]. How we view the human nature of Christ affects every facet of our Christian walk. For how can it be said in Hebrews 4:15 “He was in all points tempted like as we are,” and why would Satan take his time to tempt Christ in the wilderness if Christ could in no way sin? This shows us that in His human nature He is like you and I. It is a deep subject with deep questions, but you must know where you stand on this vital point.

The Characters of Enoch and Elijah
What the human race might become, is most beautifully portrayed in the lives of Enoch and Elijah. Both lived perfectly righteous lives by faith in God and His promises, so much so that God translated these men directly to heaven without them experiencing death. The story of Enoch is told in Genesis 5, and in verse 24 it says “Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.” The story of Elijah is found in 2 Kings 2, and in verse 11 “there appeared a chariot of fire … and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.” These men were so totally in tune with God that they stood untainted in the midst of the moral pollution around them. “Predestination” is a very elusive word, and this is what God wants for the entire human race, and Paul uses this term in Romans 8:28-29 “to them who are called according to his purpose. For whom he did fore-know, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son.” But, what does “predestine” mean? – To appoint or settle beforehand, impose a direction or tendency to follow; in other words God foresaw each generation of men, and always had the purpose of salvation in mind for them. Just as said in 1 Timothy 2:4 God’s will is to “have all men be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” However, salvation is free to all, but man was created with the freedom of choice, and not all will choose God’s path as stated in Matthew 22:14 “many are called, but few are chosen.” Therefore, divine predestination or foreknowledge in no way supersedes man’s liberty or free will. Like Enoch and Elijah, if we are to reflect the image of God fully, we must heed what is said in Colossians 3:2, 10 and 16, first, “set your affection on things above, not on things on earth;” then “put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him;” finally, “let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom” [this says nothing of “church traditions” which in some cases contradict Scripture].
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Christian Virtues – Active and Passive
1 Timothy 6:11-12 is one place that Christian virtues are brought forward, “thou, O man of God … follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith … and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.” In this list are both active and passive virtues, but as Christians, most of the emphasis is usually placed on the passive, such as patience and meekness, and not the active areas of these virtues. Spiritually, we must have a moral backbone, and integrity that cannot be flattered, bribed or coerced in any way; in other words the courage of a hero in God’s service. Revelation 14:5, talking about the 144,000, Christian heroes, the ones left standing through the final time of trouble, it says “in their mouth was no guile [no guilt of sin]: for they are without fault.” And, this state of perfection is only acquired by having Christ dwelling in you as said in Jude 24 “Him [Christ] that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory.” “Meekness,” one of the Christian virtues is commonly misunderstood, in looking at Moses, in Numbers 12:3 it says “Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.” However, meekness does not infer weakness, for Moses possessed tremendous spiritual strength of integrity that he could not be shaken from following Godly principles or be lead into compromises of any kind. Many today would call him a straight-laced Christian. This is the problem today, looking at reproof, condemning wrongs in compromise; most professing Christians look to those leaders as possessing Christian piety, whereas, of those whom will not yield their integrity, standing boldly in defense of spiritual righteousness, they are condemned as Christians who lack the spirit of piety. Standing in defense of the honor of God and purity of His truths and Law is very lonely indeed, not easy, and it is a daily struggle filled with many trials. Aaron, the brother of Moses, thought Moses was too strict and unyielding to the people’s wishes. This same type of active virtue – meekness - is needed in today’s Christian walk.

The Wind of Popularity
John the Baptist was never shaken or blown by the wind of popular opinions, and when a deputation was sent from the leadership of the church questioning his motives, he answered as said in John 1:23 “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias [Isaiah].” The task given to John by God was not an easy one; he was going directly against the popular opinion of his church leaders. This is the same as it has always been throughout history for God’s true followers; they were never in the majority, and always fighting against popular theories or traditions of the church. Jesus asked the multitude a very penetrating question regarding John the Baptist, in Matthew 11:8-15 “What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken in the wind?” Shaken by every wind of doctrine; no, he made straight the way to God, and it rocked the church to its foundations which made him very unpopular in high church circles, but popular with God. Some may dismiss this thought of John the Baptist [Elijah to come again as stated in Matthew 8:14] as just a note in history, and not relevant to our day. But, look what is said in Malachi 4:5 “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.” The Elijah message, which John the Baptist gave, is to shine forth from his followers in this last period of earth’s history, which is today’s message. Our message today is to be just as pointed and direct as was shown by John the Baptist and Elijah; a message to stand in the straight and narrow way of the Lord, and not be shaken by the winds of popular theories, doctrines and traditions of the churches. John the Baptist’s message was not smooth, for he saw the people deceived by the priests, totally self-satisfied in this deception and asleep to the sins it brought, he came to startle them back to Godly reality. It is the same today, nothing has changed, and God is calling you and me to stand as modern-day John the Baptists.

“I Die Daily”
In 1 Corinthians 15:31 Paul said “I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.” To Paul, an ex Pharisee, and now a follower of Christ, he knew his salvation or being saved was a daily, moment by moment, experience. The Jewish nation proudly pronounced that “Abraham is our father” [John 8:39] believing that because they were born as children of Abraham according to the flesh and strict followers of God’s laws they were assured of the Kingdom of God. Self-complacency was their attitude, and John the Baptist cautioned them of hardening of their hearts, when he warned them in Matthew 3:9 “think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.” Jesus also warned the Jews of this same thinking in John 8:39 when He said “If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham.” This attitude was a primary problem for the early church, for, could the followers of Christ look on themselves as mere off-shoots of Judaism, but still Jews at heart? Paul in his journeys specifically sought out the leaders of the synagogues to discuss this particular subject; his discourses in Romans bring this forward many times. Christians who believe the theory of “once saved, always saved” are walking the same thin line as the Jews with the same self-complacent attitude. That is why Paul, a former Pharisee in Judaism, a strict student of the laws of the Jews, when converted to Christianity found it so difficult in his walk with Christ; salvation was a daily battle with him. And then, do we not likewise reverence and hold in awe church organizations and leadership as did the Jews with regard to the temple and priesthood? Why continue in Laodecean complacency, looking at your spiritual condition and saying “I am rich …and have need of nothing” Revelation 3:17, and proudly acting as once saved always saved. Paul, he died daily, and says in Philippians 2:12 we are to “work out our salvation with fear and trembling;” having no room for a self-satisfied complacent attitude. Our trust dare not be in our “temples” and priesthood, but only in the Living God!

Replenished From The East
A prophecy God gave to Isaiah which will never be fulfilled is presented in Isaiah 2:1-9. Most prophecies are conditional upon circumstances of the people, God usually say “if” you do this then I will do that, the conditional word for His professed followers is “if.” The condemning verse is verse 6 where Isaiah points out the reason for the fall of Israel is “because they be replenished [spiritually] from the east.” Looking at this as it should be, spiritually, “the east” is represented as the great power of Isaiah’s day, Babylon, the great seat of false religion. This is brought forward to us heavily throughout the entire book of Revelation. But, this is also an end-time prophecy as verse 2 says “it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains … and all nations shall flow unto it.” This is what God wanted for Israel, His chosen people, to be a light to all nations in converting the world; but they failed in looking for spiritual replenishment from the false religions of the East, instead of faithfully following God. The ultimate end of Israel came with the rejection of their Messiah, Jesus Christ; and the establishment Christianity through the gospel to the Gentiles. But, this identical problem shown here in Isaiah is the same for Christianity today; “replenishment from the East,” false pagan rituals accepted, adopted and given Christian names, then labeled “church traditions” for the people to blindly follow. Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 1:9 “there is no new thing under the sun,” all has been attempted in the past and historical knowledge shows these to be vain glories. Also, in Ecclesiastes 1:2 of this he says “vanity of vanities; all is vanity.” Then, read what Jesus said of all these false religious rites adopted as church traditions and the practice of them, in Matthew 15:9 “in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.” I personally do not want my worship of God to be all in vain, how about you?

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