God Bless you Brethren. Once again I welcome you to the table of the Lord to feast your souls on the Living Body Word. We are living in the greatest of all times and the climax of the ages. Since the Seven Seals have been opened we have more Light today than ever was, but also greater darkness. As it was in the days of Noah, the seed of the righteous is almost extinct.
Like the natural man, God has only so many children. There is a finite number of elect. All the Father has given will come, there will not be one lost and there will not be one extra. Whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate, call and justify. In His great thinking they are already glorified, and when the last elect is baptized into the Body He will gather His children Home.
The end-time evangelism is NOT seeking out heathen in mission fields and pubs but calling those who THINK they are born-again Christians to come out of Babylon and be filled with the Spirit. It was not Roman creed that died on Calvary: It was the Word. It was not Roman creed God sent back upon the Church on the Day of Pentecost but the Holy Spirit. Peter did not command all men everywhere to learn the catechism but "Repent and be baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and you shall receive the new birth."
Following a denominational service recently, I was approached by the son of a Baptist missionary family. He said I should submit myself to his pastor and the windows of heaven would open to me. There is no way I could profit a man whose credentials were parents who had been Baptist missionaries, and who had no respect for God's Word and my Office. With his self-assurance I doubt he could conceive What gave his parents the new birth, IF indeed they ever were born again, would not work for him today. The fellowship of his church, their traditions of baptisms and creeds do provide a psychological security but they are totally unreceived of God.
Since the mystery of God is finished, the youngest babe in Christ could see right through this man's testimony. Being a Baptist, he hasn't recognized and therefore not obeyed the firstworks of Scriptural water baptism, and by suggesting anyone come under submission of man, his folly is made manifest.
Revelation 2:6, "But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitanes, which I also hate."
Revelation 2:2 says the Ephesian Church could NOT BEAR the evil ones and put them out, they hated their deeds but the people were not rendered impotent. So this Nicolaitane group remained a part of the first age, doing their deeds. Thus we see seeds in Ephesus that will continue and will become a "doctrine" in the Smyrnean Age, organize and receive a triple crown in Pergamos and go right up to, and into, the lake of fire. Whatever starts in the early church must continue in every age until it is finally blessed and exalted by God or destroyed as an unclean thing in the lake of fire.
Revelation 2:22-23; 19:20 and 20:10 disclose it is the FALSE church and her harlot daughters who are cast in the lake of fire. Hell was created for the devil and his angels. Look at the Bible types, for forty years Israel wandered in the wilderness, and not one of their organizations ever entered the Promise. Everyone of them died in the wilderness, and Jesus said they were eternally lost (John 7:49,58.) God deals with the individual, yes, in in Israel too, He deals with Israel as a nation but the elected individuals within Israel are those predestinated to Life, NOT the organization or the organization man.
What are these Nicolaitanes? The word comes from two Greek words. Nikao, which means to conquer, and Laos, which means the laity. In plain fact, somebody was doing something in that early church which was conquering the laity. If the laity were being conquered, then it must have been some "authority" there doing it.
What was it that God hated that was happening in that church? What was going on then, and is now going on today, is exactly what the word Nicolaitane means. The people were being subjected somehow in a way that was absolutely contrary to the Word of God.
Now to get the real meaning of what we are about to go into, I must caution you to ever keep in mind that religion (spiritual matters if you like), is composed of two parts that intertwine but are as opposite as black and white. Religion and the spiritual world are made of those two trees which had their roots in Eden. Both the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil stood in the midst of the garden and no doubt their very branches intertwined each other. Thus in the Ephesian Church is that same paradox. The church is made up of good and bad. Two vines make the church. They are like the wheat and tares, growing up side by side. But one is the TRUE. The other is the FALSE. Now God will speak TO each one and He will talk ABOUT each one. He will call them the church. And only the elect will really know which is the true Spirit. Only the elect will not be deceived. Matthew 24:24, "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." So way back there in the early church (a very short period after Pentecost) the false vine got to intertwine itself around the True Vine and we find these deeds of the Nicolaitanes. And that spirit is going to be found fighting the True Vine until it is destroyed by God. Now have you got it?
Alright. Now what was the spiritual climate of that church? It had left its first love. Leaving its first love of the Word of God was revealed to us as having fallen from its origin, which was Pentecost. In plain English that means this church was in danger of being taken away from the leading of the Holy Spirit, the control of the Spirit. This was exactly what took place after Moses led Israel out of Egypt. The way of God was to lead them by the cloud of fire, prophetic utterance, miracles and signs, and God-given wonders. This was to be accomplished by `God- selected,' and `God-ordained,' and `God-equipped,' and `God-sent' men, with the whole camp being dominated by a Holy Ghost move. They rebelled and wanted a set of rules and creeds to go by. Then they wanted a king. Then they wanted to be exactly like the world and went into complete apostasy and oblivion. That is exactly how the first church age started, and it will get worse and worse, until the Holy Spirit is completely rejected and God must destroy the people.
See how it started out in the early church. It was called "deeds." Then it became a "doctrine." It became the standard. It became the unbending way. It finally took over and God was pushed aside. Oh, it started so small, so quietly, so inoffensively. It looked so good. It seemed so sound. Then it caught a hold, and like a python, it squeezed out the very breath and killed all the spirituality there was in the church. Oh, that false vine is subtle. It is like an angel of light until it gets a hold on you. Now I want to say that I believe in leadership. But it is not the leadership of men I believe in. I believe in the leadership of the Holy Ghost coming through the Word. I believe also, that God has set men in the church, men who are gifted by the Spirit; and they will keep the church in order. I believe that. I believe also that the church is ruled over by men that God sends to take charge. But that rule is BY THE WORD, so that it is not men really ruling but the SPIRIT OF GOD, for the Word and Spirit are ONE. Hebrews 13:7, "Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the Word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation."
But see what was happening back there. That false vine was getting a hold and it was teaching that rulership by man was right. It taught that the church had to be governed. It taught a control over the people but instead of doing it God's way, they simply took authority and vested all the spiritual power in their own hands and came out with a holy priesthood standing between God and the people. They went right back to the old Aaronic system and became Antichrist for they disposed of His mediatorship and imposed their own. God hated that. The Ephesians hated that and any true believer will hate it too. We would have to be stone blind not to see that same thing at work all through the ages and right now it is the worst of all. What it was, was organization. That separated the people. God's people are supposed to be one. By ONE Spirit are they ALL baptized into one body and EVERYONE is to be moved upon by the Holy Ghost and EVERYONE is to participate in the worship of God. But men wanted the pre-eminence, so they took over control, and bishops became archbishops, and with imposing titles they bypassed the Word of God and taught their own doctrines. They got the people to obey them until the time came that their way of worship did not in any way at all resemble the early days after Pentecost. These deeds were the beginning of apostolic succession. From apostolic succession it was one easy and quick step to "church membership" as the means of saving grace. The Word was reduced to a creed. Antichrist by his spirit was predominating the church.
Do you know God set five different types of minister in the Church and that these offices are sovereign gifts from God to the Church to keep It clean and bring it to maturity? Yes He did, these offices are NOT given to serve the sinner but those who are already saints, so their lives will be under such preeminence of the Word, people will not see them, but Christ in them; and to prepare them so they are ready always to witness to the hope within their heart, thus bringing sinners to repentance and Christ. I Corinthians twelve and Ephesians four inform us God set apostles, prophets, evangelists, and pastors in His Church. It is not possible to become a minister of the Gospel by virtue of personal enthusiasm and graduation from theological college, or popular vote of the people: that never was God's way.
Bishops and deacons are actually lay offices ordained by the congregation, are subject to the authority of the local pastor and have no authority outside their local assembly. A bishop is an elder with the ability to teach others in the faith what he has been taught by his pastor. The deacon is the policeman in the church. His duty is to maintain and uphold conduct, order and doctrine among the brethren in church, home and community life.
Each church is sovereign under its pastor who is answerable to the Head of the Church universal, the Holy Spirit. Now the Church is universal by reason of its faith. There is only one (1) faith and It is common to all believers. The ONLY common link between each local church should be FAITH, and NOT man-made organization. Good men lean toward organization, failing to realize that the desire for fellowship and what appears like a good plan to foster the work of God is really a trick of the enemy. There is a great danger in any kind of organized brotherhood among the elders, pastors, etc. It is the one faith, a common understanding on ALL Scripture Which baptizes the elect into ONE body and that is why, in each Age, they "all spoke the SAME thing." There was not one faith for the Roman Catholics, another for the Orthodox Catholics, one for the Baptists, and another for Presbyterians and Episcopalians. For by one (1) faith, the elect are all baptized into one Body, without division of race, creed or color.
"How can two walk together except they are in agreement on the Word?" At best only one could have the faith and if the others refuse correction by the Word they are not God's children. Now I know that is an unpopular way of preaching in this day when all creeds and denominations are uniting, but that is what God says in His Word so any dissenters are uniting AGAINST the revealed Word of God proving they are not of God (Amos 3:3; Hebrews 12:8.)
You may wonder then, how it is we have as many as five popes in the world today, scores of Catholic and hundreds of Protestant denominations, each teaching different doctrines and all claiming to be of Christ. The reason is the mystery of iniquity - Antichrist - in his twin manifestations of nicolaitanism and Balaamism which brought in the Dark Ages and will yet bring the Great Tribulation upon the world.
Nicolaitanism is organization, establishing a man-made hierarchy which stands between the laity and their God. It's twin evil is Balaamism or substitution of man-made wisdom and reasoning for revelation by the Spirit, or faith. The Holy Spirit is the Head of God's Church and is the inside Teacher which guides into ALL Truth and reveals the Word for the Age.
Following the Dark Ages, the one faith was not restored all at once but progressively as the Lord revealed It. The elect walked in the Light AS it was restored, Christ recognized their good conscience in the revealed Word and interceded for their ignorance on Truth not yet recovered. Protestant sects differ from oneanother in their doctrines because they were organized around progressive revelations of the Word as God unfolded It. They are known by the revelation around which each organized. Organization is the reason why we have so many different denominations still with us today. Men never called of God, led by the church and not subject to the Spirit, refused to KEEP walking in the Light as God continued to unfolded It, and built a system which is self- perpetuating. A closed loop of traditions and creed into which people are born and die, never able to come to a knowledge of the Truth.
Look at it today. If you read Acts 2:4 the way some do, you could read it this way, "Now when the day of Pentecost was fully come, a priest with a wafer and said, `Stick out your tongue,' he laid the wafer upon it, and he himself drank some wine and said, `You have now received the Holy Ghost.`"
Incredible? That is exactly what Nicolaitanism has come to. They say, "Never mind what God's Word says. You can't understand it. We have to interpret it for you. Furthermore the Bible is not finished. It has to change with the times and we will tell you what the changes are." How contrary that is to the Word of God that emphatically states whenever there is a conflict with the truth: "Let God be true, but every man a liar." Heaven and earth will pass away, but NOT ONE WORD of God will fail. So the people are led by those who presume to be what they are not. They say they are vicars of Christ, but what they are is Antichrist.
Here is another sad story. It is the story of water baptism. In Jesus' day and after Pentecost they were immersed in water. No one can deny that. Educated men say that all they did was pour water on them because it was easy to find little holes of water in many places. And when they pour water on them, they do it in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost, as if those titles were real names, and as if there were three Gods instead of just one. But stay in that organization and try and preach the truth of immersion in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be put out. You couldn't be led of God and stay in there. It is impossible.
Now Paul was a prophet, taught by the Holy Ghost. If Paul baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and said anyone that did different from his preaching was accursed, then it is time to wake up and see that the church is no longer controlled by the Holy Ghost but it is controlled by the Nicolaitanes. Acts 20:27-30, "For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them."
Paul saw it coming. But he warned them about this subtle priesthood that would come and take over with its false doctrines. He knew they would implement a way of worship that excluded the people from any part in a Holy Spirit ministry. And even right today among those who claim to be free and full of the Spirit there is not too much freedom in the laity, and the best we can see is a few preachers with inspired preaching while the flock just sits there and tries to absorb it. This is a far cry from Paul who said that when all came together, all had the leading of the Spirit, and all participated in Spiritual worship.
And the church corporate has never learned this lesson from the Scripture nor from history. Every time God gives a visitation of the Holy Spirit and people get free, after awhile they bind themselves right back to the very thing they came out of. When Luther came out of Catholicism, the people stayed free for awhile. But when he died, the people simply organized what they thought he believed, set up their own creeds and ideas and repudiated anyone who said opposite to what they said. They went right back into Catholicism with a little different form. And right today many Lutherans are ready to go all the way back.
Oh, yes! In Revelation 17, that old whore had many daughters. These daughters are just like mother. They set the Word aside, deny the work of the Spirit of God, subjugate the laity, and make it impossible for them to worship God unless they come through them or through their pattern, which is nothing but a blueprint of unbelief from Satan himself.
With the Leadership of the Holy Ghost denied, the church is NOTHING BUT THE WORLD WITH GOD'S NAME ATTATCHED TO IT. The world and the church are all of the same lump, just like Jacob and Esau were of the same parents, but the Spirit of God makes the difference.
It doesn't matter if you call yourself a Christian, anyone can do that. The point is whether or not you have the Spirit of God in you, for without that Spirit you are reprobate; you are none of His.
The church has departed from what she originally was. The church nominal is a hybrid. Instead of Spirit-filled men led by Spirit-given revelation, are creeds, and by-laws, and the educated guesses of educated men. Learning has taken the place of revelation. Reason has replaced faith. Program has now replaced spontaneous praise in the Holy Ghost. The Life or Seed that brings Christians to birth is not in them. Like brings forth like. The Baptists bring forth more Baptists and they act like Baptists. The Methodists bring forth Methodists and they act like Methodists. None are known by the power of God nor can they be for It's not there. Rather, they are known by their ceremonial worship of God and their creeds and dogmas.
Where, oh where, are we spiritually? We are in a wilderness of darkness. How far we have wandered from the first church. Pentecost is nowhere in view and the Word cannot be found. Apostolic succession, which today abounds, is not found in the Word. It is a man-made device. It supersedes illegally the truth that GOD, NOT MAN, has set His leaders in the church. Peter was not even in Rome. Yet they lie and say he was. History proves he was not. There are people who read history, but shrug their shoulders and go back to believing a lie.
Read the Scriptures, Peter was pastor of the Church in Jerusalem and at the time men say he was in Rome, all Jews had been expelled. Can you imagine any Jew worshipping a trinity when the First Commandment says, "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me." And the greatest commandment - "Hear O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord." Or how about the Second Commandment: Thou shalt not make unto thyself any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of they who do such." The Second Nicea Council declared it anathema not to venerate images and adore relics and bow down to murals, etc., and this decision was reconfirmed by the Council of Rome in 1980.
Apart from pagans of EVERY nation, tribe and tongue, whenever did the Jews worship a trinity of gods? It was Constantine who decided the God of the Christians was a trinity. Emperor of Rome and President of the First Nicea Council of AD 325 where the Roman Catholic church was organized, he was never a Christian. Returning to Rome, he murdered his wife of twenty-one years and their eldest son. Then decided he had made a mistake; God was NOT after all a trinity, and Arius' equally false Unitarian doctrine was correct. This wicked man alternated between these two heresies for the remainder of his sinful life. It is HERE friends, and NOT Pentecost that the denominations take their stand. Search ANY history, the Christian ministers DEPARTED before the Council sat. Its first decision was that laymen below the office of bishop would have no say. That is nicolaitanism which God hates.
Peter commanded EVERYONE to be baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ. For almost one thousand years Rome killed anyone who was baptized according to Peter's faith, read "Baptism," page 59 in the New Catholic Encyclopaedia.
Where can you find the `vicar of Christ' in the Word? The Latin VICARIVS FILII DEI (5+1+100+1+5+1+50+1+1+500+1=666) means "substitute" or "instead of the Son of God." No one takes His place, yet it has been done and people accept it. Where can you find that `added revelation' is accepted by God, especially revelation contrary to one already given? Yet they accept it and rest on it. Where do you find a `purgatory'? Where do you find a `mass'? Where do you find `paying money to get out of hell'? It is not in the Word, but men put it in their own book and by it took over the people, ruling them by fear. Where do you find that `man has the power to forgive us as though he were God'? "Grievous wolves," is hardly strong enough to describe them. Nicolaitanism. Organization. Man over man.
Get back to God. Repent before it is too late. See the handwriting on the wall. It is writing judgment. As the sacred vessels were desecrated at Belshazzar's impious feast thus bringing the wrath of God, now the sacred Word has been desecrated - the Spirit is grieved and judgment is here, even at the door. Repent! Repent! Go back to Pentecost. Back to the leadership of the Holy Ghost. Back to the Word of God, for why will ye die?
"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches." It may be that millions will hear these words or read them. But how many will pay heed to them? That we do not know. But he who will lend his ear and want to know the words of truth will find the Spirit of God enlightening him. If your ear is open to the Word, the Spirit of God will make the Word real to you. Now that is a work of the Spirit. I can teach you the truth, but if you don't open your ear to hear it and your heart to receive it, you won't get the revelation.
Now notice, it says that the Spirit is speaking to the churches. That is plural, not singular. The Spirit did not have John write this down for a local Ephesian church, nor for the first Age only. It is for all church Ages. But this is the church of beginnings. And thus it is like the Book of Genesis. What started in Genesis holds true throughout the entire Word and finally closes out in Revelation. Thus, this church beginning in Acts is God's blueprint for all ages until she closes out in the Laodicean Age. Watch it carefully. Let every Age take heed, for what is going on here is only the start. That little tree that was planted is going to grow. It is going to grow through the Ages. This, then, is a message for every Christian through every Age until Jesus comes. Yes, it is, for it is the Spirit speaking. Amen.
Denominations of Laodicea close in the blackness of apostasy. Clergy and laity imagine they are rich and in need of nothing, worshipping according to the creeds and traditions of their forefathers oblivious to the Light God is in. Unaware Revelation 4 and 5 have been fulfilled, they are naked, and wretched, and blind and miserable AND DON'T KNOW IT. The organization man is full of joy and confidence, worshipping the Son of God but they are worshipping in vain; He is no longer in the Office of Son of God but Son of man. Like the high priest of Israel who sprinkled the blood in the Holy of Holies for forty years after the Crucifixion, and the Shekinah was without the Camp but they knew it not. Now it is time for God, (Messiah,) to come back to claim His Bride and then make Himself known to Israel. Thus we see God again stepping forth to assume a physical relationship to man as the "Son of David, King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and Bridegroom of the Gentile Bride."
"And the Spirit and the Bride say, "Come. And let him that heareth say, 'Come.' And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of Life freely ... Even so, come, Lord Jesus" (Revelation 10: 11; 22:11-21.)
God Bless you Brethren, follow the Word, serving Him without compromise, be prepared to manifest the sons of God. Organization men have their reward in this life, but when they wake from their confident sleep there will be weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth. They will have to appeal at the White Throne Judgment, because they failed to recognize their day and its message. When YOU have the revelation and see yourself in the Word and the Word living through you, let the Life pass through the Body. bb920420.htm
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