Bible Believers' Newsletter 415
"We focus on the present Truth – what Jesus is doing now. . ."
Christian greetings in the precious Name of our Lord Jesus Christ; we are happy to meet with you in God's unchanging Word.
Unreported by the principal news media are many "earthquakes in divers places" and also volcanic activity; while relief and reconstruction efforts in earthquake-ravaged communities of Pakistan, Turkey, Iran, China, India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia is seldom mentioned. Is this old news? One hears barely a whisper about intense tectonic activity on the US West Coast, or Yellowstone National Park. And the Pacific ring of fire is active as we move into the season for the "Big One".
Our main article in this Newsletter is centred on the five-fold ministry, explaining how it will be present and active in the Body until the "squeeze" and the manifestation of the Sons of God. At that time "the church systems will persecute the true Bride. This image will try to keep the Bride from preaching and teaching, etc. Her ministers will be forbidden to give comfort and truth to the people who need it. But before the antichrist (in person) takes over this complete world system of churches the true Church will be taken away from this world to be with the Lord. God will catch away His Bride for the great Marriage Supper of the Lamb (William Branham, An Exposition of the Seven Church Ages, p. 377).
This Newsletter serves those of like precious faith. Whoever will receive the truth is welcome to feed their soul from the waters of the River of Life. Everything here presented should be confirmed personally in your own Bible.
Judas Iscariot to get Vatican Makeover
January 12, 2006 Interpretations of Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Jesus with a kiss, are being rethought by Vatican scholars.
The proposed "rehabilitation" of the man who was paid 30 pieces of silver to identify Jesus to Roman soldiers in the Garden of Gethsemane, comes on the ground that he was not deliberately evil, but was just "fulfilling his part in God's plan" reports the Times newspaper.
Historically Christians have often blamed Judas for aiding and abetting the Crucifixion, and his name is synonymous with treachery. According to St. Luke, Judas was "possessed by Satan".
Now, a campaign led by Monsignor Walter Brandmuller, head of the Pontifical Committee for Historical Science, is aimed at persuading believers to look kindly at a man reviled for 2,000 years, reports the newspaper.
Mgr. Brandmuller told fellow scholars it was time for a "re-reading" of the Judas story. He is supported by Vittorio Messori, a prominent Catholic writer close to both Pope Benedict XVI and the late John Paul II. . . Full story: ekklesia.co.uk
Comment: "Five things did Canaan charge his sons: love one another, love robbery, love lewdness, hate your masters, and do not speak the truth" (Talmud, Peshachim 113b).
My Congratulations to the People of the Holy Land
By Israel Adam Shamir (Jaffa, Israel)
My beloved countrymen, sons and daughters of Palestine, you defied the orders of the Living Dead; you dared the threats of his servants in Washington, London and Brussels. You chose the party of faith and resistance. You manifested your spirit unbroken by oppression. I feel so proud of your noble daring, of your steadfast belief in God, of your defiant rejection of Tel Aviv's diktat. Even under the foreign military rule, you are the freest people in the world, the most unbending and resilient. You are freer than Americans who submitted to their Patriot Act, you are freer than Europeans who repeat the instructions of Washington and threaten Iran with sanctions and war. You are more pious than the Vatican who toys with the mad idea of beatifying Judas in order to curry favour with the Jews. You can't even move from a village to a village without Jewish permission, but you are free in spirit, and that counts most. Even today they kill your daughters and sons, but can't kill your indomitable spirit . . .
Should the new Hamas-led parliament recognise the supremacist and racist Jewish state? Certainly not. It may reject the partition and invite all permanent residents of the Holy Land to form together a new authority for the whole of Palestine from the River Jordan to the Sea. Full story: yahoo.com
Comment: Whilst we cannot agree with all points made by our friend, Brother Israel Shamir, his generous and noble spirit of goodwill to these brave Semitic people persecuted by the non-Semitic invaders and murderers of Hebrew and Arab brothers is to be commended.
Evangelicals exploit Air Force Academy
"Insider-Magazine.com is proud to bring our readers another well-researched article examining "Spiritual Warfare." Like Wayne Madsen's "Rise of the Christian Mafia," we urge our readers to review all the links for important guidance. We are greatly troubled by the rise of cultist Antichrist religious movements taking control of our government, its institutions and indoctrinating young minds, readying them to destroy each other and the entire planet. We call these new USAF cadets Angels of Darkness. With their fingers on the buttons of nuclear missiles aimed at the world no man or woman is safe upon earth until we purge ourselves of this insanity." Full story: insider-magazine.com
Comment: The image of the Roman beast is the apostate (once) Protestant churches whose religion is basically the Roman Catholic system of false worship, and the United States whose ruthless imperial dictatorship and gung-ho colonial troops are a clone of the iron empire.
Pentagon can Now Fund Foreign Militaries
January 29, 2006 Congress has granted unusual authority for the Pentagon to spend as much as $200 million of its own budget to aid foreign militaries, a break with the traditional practice of channeling foreign military assistance through the State Department. . .
The final versionSection 1206 of the authorization actsays the Pentagon can provide training, equipment and supplies "to build the capacity" of foreign militaries to conduct counter terrorist operations or join with US forces in stability operations. But the section also stipulates that orders for such aid must originate with the president, and it requires the Pentagon to work closely with the State Department in formulating and implementing the assistance.
This new authority cannot be used to provide any assistance banned by other US laws . . . Having gained this much, the Pentagon and State Department are now setting their sights on a more ambitious overhaul of foreign assistance rules.
"In the longer run, we need to have our assistance structured in a way that will give us even broader flexibility," said Philip Zelikow, the State Department's counselor. "The president and his advisers must be able to devise a program that can allocate money as needed among whatever agencies have the skill sets to deliver the capabilities, whether State, Defense, Justice or other government agencies." Full story: washingtonpost.com
Revelations about the Twin Towers in the 9/11 Oral Histories
"[T]here was just an explosion [in the south tower]. It seemed like on television [when] they blow up these buildings. It seemed like it was going all the way around like a belt, all these explosions." Firefighter Richard Banaciski
"I saw a flash, flash, flash [at] the lower level of the building. You know like when they demolish a building?" Assistant Fire Commissioner Stephen Gregory
"[I]t was [like a] professional demolition where they set the charges on certain floors and then you hear 'Pop, pop, pop, pop, pop'." Paramedic Daniel Rivera
The above quotations come from a collection of 9/11 oral histories that, although recorded by the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) at the end of 2001, were publicly released only on August 12, 2005. Prior to that date, very few Americans knew the content of these accounts or even the fact that they existed.
Why have we not known about them until recently? Part of the answer is that the city of New York would not release them until it was forced to do so . . . Full story: 911truth.org
US in Technical Default
January 27, 2006 In a shocking development, the Treasury Department website is openly stating that as of January 24, 2006 our national debt stood at $8,185.3 billion and on January 26th at $8,190.5 billion.
Yet the US national debt 'ceiling,' the maximum amount of debt the US government may hold at any one time, stands at $8,184 billion a full $5.5 billion less. Although called upon by John Snow, Congress has not yet passed an expansion of the debt ceiling, so the US government is now operating in technical default.
You may recall that when last the debt ceiling was approached in the months surrounding the 2004 elections, the Treasury department furiously employed every accounting trick in the book (and then some) to avoid breaching the limit. They even went so far as to take the unprecedented step of borrowing $14 billion from the Federal Financing Bank to cover up the shortfall.
But they never breached the ceiling. Full story: financialsense.com
Other Dimensions might soon be Detected
Irvine, January 26, 2006 Northeastern University and University of California scientists say they might soon have evidence of extra dimensions and other exotic predictions.
Early results from a neutrino detector at the South Pole called AMANDA suggest ghostlike particles from space could serve as probes to a world beyond our familiar three dimensions, the research team says. The evidence, they say, would come from how neutrinos interact with other forms of matter on Earth.
No more than a dozen high-energy neutrinos have been detected so far. However, the current detection rate and energy range indicate AMANDA's larger successor, called IceCube, now under construction, could provide the first evidence for string theory and other theories that attempt to build upon our current understanding of the universe. An article describing this work appears in the current issue of Physical Review Letters. Full story: upi.com
Let Brotherly Love Continue
For every Israelite or Gentile Christian, "the last days" followed the death and resurrection of Christ and commenced with the giving of the Spirit for regeneration on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:17; Hebrews 1:1-3). However, when the prophets of the Old Testament describe the last days in relation to Israel they are speaking of Daniel's Seventieth Week, because when that nation, blinded by the Talmudic theology of their religious leaders, crucified Jesus, God turned to we Gentiles to call Messiah a Bride, a people for His Name. After the wedding Jesus will reveal Himself to Israel, and in the midst of Daniel's Seventieth Week they will recognize their King and Queen (Acts 15:7-9, 14-16; Isaiah 11:10-11; 54:1-5; Zechariah 12:10-13:9).
I Timothy 4:1, "The Spirit distinctly states that in the latter timesor during the long days of papal and Greek anti-Christianitysome shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils".
Here Paul foretold the manner in which the apostasy would declare itself. Jesus called this Balaamism (Revelation 2:14), which is the substitution of false teachings or interpretations of God's revealed Word. This caused Israel to commit whoredom with the Moabites (Numbers 25) and resulted in the introduction of a pagan trinity of gods, unscriptural baptism in three Titles and the organization of Roman Catholicism at the First Nicaea Council in AD325.
II Timothy 3:1, "This know also, that in the last daysthe very end of "the Messianic Age" for we Gentiles in this time of Christ's second or 'parousia' Coming when the apostate end-time conditions of the days of Noah and Christ are replicated along with the conditions of the days of Lot (II Peter 3:3-4; Matthew 24:3, 37-39)perilous times shall come [suddenly]".
I Thessalonians 5:3-5, "When people say, Peace and safety, then sudden destruction will come upon them like the birth pains of a woman; and there will be no escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness for that day to surprise you as a thief. For you are all sons of Light, and children of the day: we are not of the night or of darkness".
In II Timothy 3 and 4, Paul foretold the outward immorality that would be associated with this inward falling away from the faith after the revelation of the Seven Seals when the conditions of the days of Noah and Lot are replicated. The apostates will remain within Christian circles, holding the Name of Jesus Christ and church form, "to take away their reproach" (Isaiah 4:1). But in this false security of hybrid Christianity they will be snared and taken in the sudden dispensation change, and will not escape the Great Tribulation.
Such prophecy explains how the "little foxes" of careless living, the haphazard understanding of a second-hand or do-it-yourself religion with a form of godliness that denies the revelation of the Word, which is the essence of its authority and power, will cause many to suffer loss (I Corinthians 3:10-15). A little leaven in the primitive Church has leavened the whole lump over 2,000 years of the "last days" such that at the end of the Laodicean Church Age God called a third exodus of the wise and even the foolish virgin out from Rome and her (once) Protestant daughters who will be cast into a lake of Fire at the consummation (Revelation 19:20; 20:10).
The tribulation of the "last days" or Messianic Age of redemption and completion runs from Pentecost to the consummation. Although for Christ's end-time Bride, those days have been shortened by the revelation of the end-time Message drawing us into the unity of the faith for the manifestation of the Sons of God and the translation, otherwise there would be no flesh saved for the translation. The rest of earth's population goes into the Great Tribulation; the "saved" and 144,000 Hebrew saints will be martyred while the remainder shall perish in the atomic conflagration of Armageddon.
The morning Brother Branham laid the corner stone for his church building, the Lord spoke to him and said, "This is not your Tabernacle; when you come out of this vision read II Timothy 4." And He set me down under the bright blue sky and said, "Do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of your ministry. For the time will come when they won't endure sound doctrine but shall heap for themselves together teachers, having itching ears, and shall be turned from the truth to fables."
God told Brother Branham, "Leave Jeffersonville and do the work of an evangelist." But in deference to the wishes of his mother-in-law, he put off obeying God. Yet obedience is better than sacrifice. If God tells you to do something, you had better obey at once, lest a worse thing come upon you. Thus, in 1937 God took the life of the Prophet's first wife, Sister Hope, and their baby daughter through the flood he had foreseen in a vision at the age of seven wherein the Ohio River rose thirty-two feet above Spring Street, Jeffersonville.
God told him he would travel around the world, praying for kings and potentates. He could not understand how this could be since he had only a seventh grade education. But God said, "As the prophet Moses was given two signs as a vindication, so will you. Take people by their right hand in your left, and keep humble." (A reaction on his hand indicated their ailment). And He said, "It will come to pass that you'll know the very secret of their hearts. This is the same thing our Lord Jesus did on earth. It's the revelation of the Son of Man."
God is true to His Word, and Brother Branham's ministry spearheaded the healing revival that followed World War II. He prayed for King George VI, who was healed of multiple sclerosis. William Upshaw, a US Presidential candidate in the days of prohibition, leapt and ran after being confined for 66 years and pushed his wheelchair from the meeting. Even his critics don't deny what God did in this ministry, which revealed Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever by the Messianic Sign of Hebrews 4:12, discerning the thoughts and intents of the heart "as it was in the days of Lot." The dead were raised to life and demons cast out. Cripples were made whole, the blind saw and cancers healed. Some meetings held crowds estimated at 500,000.
When the Lord told Brother Branham in December 1962, Go West for the evening-time Light, his work as an evangelist was fulfilled, and he relocated to Tucson, Arizona. "For the time had come when people would not endure sound doctrine but after their own lusts heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears, and turn away their ears from the truth to fables."
On February 28, 1963, the Supernatural Cloud prophesied in Daniel 7:9, Matthew 24:4,30, Acts 1:9-11 and Revelation 1:7 manifested in Arizona's usually clear blue skies. It was "the sign of the end-time" that would commence when Jesus Christ revealed the Seven Seals thus bringing His 'parousia' Coming (Daniel 12:4, 9; Revelation 10:1, 6). On March 8 the Lord told His Prophet to return to Jeffersonville where He should receive His "Elijah" anointing as Christ revealed the Seven Seals through him to the congregation. God cannot bring the world to judgment without first displaying a sign in the heavens and sending a vindicated prophet with warning and a way to escape the judgment. Yet few have recognized the significance of the Sign in the sky, and despite an abundance of Supernatural vindication in the United States and overseas throughout the years in which he was "doing the work of an evangelist," few received his prophetic ministry.
Four months after the end of the Laodicean Church Age, Brother Branham defined the five gifts or offices of ministry God ordained "to bring the saints to maturity for their work of ministration" in general service, principally to the Body, and "to uphold the truth in love." Each has his different office (Romans 12:4) although mutually dependent upon all other members of the Body (I Corinthians 12:21). Some are doctors, motor mechanics and web administrators, some mothers and nurses. There are "gifts of healings, helps (janitors, librarians, organizers, secretaries), and governments (treasurers, bishops and deacons), diversities of tongues," etc (I Corinthians 12:28). Every member of the Body possesses gifts of practical service in the life of the Body.
The five-fold ministry is to equip us to "always be ready to explain to every man that asks us to account for the hope that is in us with gentleness and reverence." All of this so "that the saints may be fitted for the work of ministration to the Body of Christ to edify or build itself up in brotherly love." In Ephesians 4:12 there is no thought of quantitative increase from without but qualitative increase within the Body by attendance to the needs of individual members through the edification of one by the other. This reinforces the emphasis Brother Branham placed on character-building and having the Token of the Life of Christ on display at all times.
Our character is an ensign of Christ, a written epistle known and read of all men. This is the means by which we sanctify and save our family and friends, the behaviour by which a saintly wife wins her husband to Christ (I Corinthians 7:12-16; I Peter 3:1-2).
The end of the perfecting or complete furnishing of the saints for the work of ministering to the needs of the Brethren and building-up of the Body in love comes into being when "all of Christ's end-time Bride attain to or arrive at the unity of the faith and all alike know Christ, the object of our faith, in personal relationship".
This end is explained in Ephesians 1 where Paul speaks of the translation of Christ's end-time Bride through "the Spirit of wisdom and knowledge of Him: the eyes of our understanding being enlightened; that we may know what is the hope of God's calling, and what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty [resurrection] power, which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places".
Thus the five-fold ministry has an essential role until the early days of the "squeeze" and the manifestation of the Sons of Godour practical test and "finishing school"after the close of the Gentile dispensation. Then we will look unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith in a one on one relationship with just expectation, if we are in the unity of the faith and intimate knowledge of the Spirit; in "a perfect Man"His many-membered facsimile in the full Spiritual stature of the full-grown and mature Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:23).
Here is how Brother Branham defined these five offices: "the pastor is a special person. He's built to where he can put up with the fusses of the people. He's a burden-bearer; he's the ox of the team. He's a man that can set down when somebody's got something against somebody else, and set down with them two families, and take neither side, and reason it out, and bring it right back into sweetness. He knows how to take care of things."
"The evangelist is a special man. He's a man that's burning like a fireball. He runs into a city and preaches his message, and gets out of there somewhere else. See, he's a special man."
"The teacher is a special man. He sets back under the anointing of the Spirit and is able to take the Words and put them together by the Holy Spirit, that the pastor or evangelist either one could not compare with him."
"And then we find out the apostle is a special man. He's a setter-in-order. He's a man that's sent from God to set the things in order."
"The prophet is a special man. A prophet is a man whom the Word of the Lord comes to, because the prophet is so designed in life that his subconscious and his first conscious is so close together that he doesn't go to sleep to dream his dream; he sees it when he's wide awake. See? Now, that's something God has to do. . . A prophet foresees way off (See?) the things that is coming. He sees the cup of God's wrath, full, before it is filled. See? He can say, "THUS SAITH THE LORD . . . he's saying what he's looking at. It ain't here yet, but it'll sure be here. That's right. It's going to be here . . . He knows it's coming, years away, yet he sees it" (Warning then Judgment, p. 17:104-109).
In Questions and Answers on the Seals Brother Branham said these "special men" will be in the Bride of Christ (p. 494:Q22; Proving His Word, 12:60-61; Spiritual Food in Due Season, p. 20:142; I Have Heard but Now I See, p. 15:82; Trying to do God a Service without It being God's Will, p. 38:232-237). And in 1964 he taught we should still pay tithes to our minister. Surely if tithing remains obligatory there must be a continuing five-fold ministry to receive our tithes. Since the revelation of the Seven Seals brought us the fullness of the Word, and the mystery of God is finished, the Church should be mature and in order, having put away childish reasonings against faith (Calling Jesus on the Scene, p. 19:127; Influence #22:18, p. 13:98; COD, p. 1034:184-185; God's Chosen Place of Worship, p. 24:115).
On April 18, 1965, before preaching the sermon titled, "Does God ever change His Mind about His Word" (p. 4:19-60), Brother Branham ordained a number of ministers, so there was still a five-fold ministry growing within the circle of this Message three years after the fullness of the Word was delivered. God has not changed His mind about His Word (Malachi 3:16)!
In I Corinthians 12:29-30, Paul asks the rhetorical question, "Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Are all nurses, accountants or web administrators? Have all the gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret?" Surely not!
Paul spent much of chapter 12 pronouncing against exclusive regard for particular gifts since it was impossible for all to have one alone, and God has distributed diverse gifts and abilities among the members of the body such that no individual saint is an island unto himself but is interdependent upon the other members of the Body as the organs of the human body are mutually dependent one upon another for the health, functioning and welfare of the whole.
As in the body all is not eye, or all foot or all hand, so not everyone in the Church occupy the same offices and possess the same gifts. These God distributes according to His sovereign wisdom and pleasure. None must be discontinued and none must boast. But although all gifts have their value and are conferred by God, yet some are more valuable than others, and Paul encourages us to be more zealous for the gifts most advantageous to attaining the objective of all gifts. Yet besides exhorting us to be zealous of the better gifts, "I show you a more excellent way" as individual Christians than seeking even the greater gifts: the way of love, which embraces faith and hope, bears all of the fruits of the Spirit (I Corinthians 13:1-13; Galatians 5:22-26), and is a more excellent way to obtain the gifts and our objective, which is the Life of Christ in us and the Token on display.
This is Paul's Message in I Corinthians 12 13 as he explains, "Make charity your great quest, and zealously desire Spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy or speak by revelation" (I Corinthians 14:1, 3, 39). The emphasis is upon spiritual revelation for the edification of the Body and "those who are unlearned or unbelievers." When Brother Branham said, "I'll ride the trail once more" he was referring to the prophesy of the end-time Bride (I Corinthians 14:23; Revelation 10:8-11; Genesis 4:10).
Neither Paul nor Brother Branham implies dissolution of the five fold ministry at the close of the Laodicean Church Age. Indeed, as the denominational churches are apostate and know it not, and we have the fullness of the Word in what Zechariah called "a day in which the Light is neither clear nor dark" the five-fold ministry is more needful now than at any time in history.
Brother Branham explained in 1965, "Jesus Christ is revealing Himself through the ages by His Spirit in the messengers. They are as Moses was to the children of Israel. As Moses had the revelation for his day, so each messenger had God's revelation and ministry for that day."
"Thus when we see that the messengers are in His hand, we see the Lord identifying Himself with these men and granting them His power (Revelation 1:16). It is not enough that He has associated Himself with the whole church, which we saw when He was seen standing amongst the seven golden lamp-stands. Nor is it even enough that we see the five-fold ministry of Ephesians four (apostles, prophets, teachers, evangelists, pastors). For in each age the church goes astray, and it is not just the laity but the clergy groupshepherds are wrong as well as sheep. Then God brings Himself on the scene as the Chief Shepherd in the ministries of these seven men to lead His people back to the truth and the abundant power of that truth."
"God is in His peopleall of His people, for if any man has not the Spirit of Christ he is none of His. And He is the Word. That would be the Word recognized in the people. But He has placed a special leadership in these men of His own choosing and through the determined counsel of His own will. They appear once in each age. It is the same Spirit in them. What a far cry is this from the heresy of Rome. They have a man of their own choosingone after the othernone producing the power of Godnone abiding in the Word of Godeach one differing from the one before him and adding what he desires as though he were God. God is not in it. God is in His messenger and he who would have the fullness of God would follow the messenger as the messenger is a follower of the Lord by His Word" (An Exposition of the Seven Church Ages (p. 251:3. And on page 344:1 the Prophet was still speaking of the currency of the five-fold ministry).
Brother Branham was the angel to the Laodicean Church Age who introduced the end-time Bride to the fullness of the Word. The revelation of the Seven Seals in March, 1963, brought the Chief Shepherd back to earth in WORD form. Since that which is perfect is made known, PART-Word, and Christ's mediation because of its incompleteness, and the leadership of an angel to the Church Ages anointed with a portion of the Spirit, is done away. But the five-fold ministry continues its work.
In 1964 Brother Branham taught, "There are five offices elected of God. For God has set in the church apostles, prophets, teachers, pastors, evangelists." God did that. Man has deacons and so forth, and everything else, but God set in the church for the perfecting of the churchcan't divide it."
"Now, the Holy Spirit, when It comes, It is a witness unto you (See?) that this Word is right, the Word for today, not the Word for Luther, the Word, not for Moses. We witness it's the Truth, but it's another day . . ."
"I Corinthians 13 says this: "When that which is perfect is come, that which is in part shall be done away with." So all these little things of jumping up-and-down like a kid, trying to talk in tongues, and all these other things, when that which is perfect. . . And we do have today, by God's help, the perfect interpretation of the Word with Divine vindication. Then that which is in part is done away with. "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child; but when I become a man, I put away childish things. . ." (COD, p. 1005:54-57).
It is not the five-fold ministry that is "done away," but the imperfect revelation of PART-Word and guesswork men devised to fill in the blanks so that the Scriptures would conform to their understanding, the "manufacture" of gifts and impersonation of offices for which ignorance Christ interceded.
The responsibility of the five-fold ministry is to keep the saints clean and under preeminence to the Word by the washing of water by the Word, or a clear revelation bringing us to maturity in the unity of the faith. This is accomplished by preaching, which exposes our faults and shortcomings, bringing correction and discipline through sanctification; and by teaching, which shows us our position in the Body.
You might say, "That is the job of the Holy Spirit"!
Indeed it is, and He has ordained the five-fold ministry to accomplish the task. God's Word is Spirit in a form we can receive by faith, and faith is the mind Word of God in usa clear understanding of His Will. Because the Holy Spirit can only enter the human heart in WORD formthrough our eyes or our ears, God in His wisdom chose the foolishness of preaching to impart His Life through the Spirit-quickened Word. The Word is a seed, but if it abides alone it will lay dormant in the hearer until he receives a further portion of Word that brings meaning and Life or understanding to what they have already heard.
Romans 10:14-15, 17, "How shall men call upon Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in One of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher??? And how can men preach, unless they are sent? As it is written, how beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! So faith comes from hearing, and what is heard comes by the preaching of Christ".
We overcome sin, sickness and worldly temptations by faith in the revealed Word and prayer.
As it was in the days of Noah, the time is near when God will shut the door to the Kingdom. Don't be caught on the wrong side of that door. Only eight overcame by listening to God's Word in the days of Noah, and three of them were subsequently lost. Lot's wife started out as an overcomer by listening to God's Word, but her heart was still in Sodom. She wanted to wear trousers, cut her hair and party with her sinner friends. A woman should put God's will and Word first in her life, then her husband and family, and finally herself.
Israel began their exodus two million strong, but of all the adults who left Egypt, only Joshua and Caleb entered the Promised Land. The denominations did run well but their love for the leaven of their traditions hindered them from stepping into further Light as God continued to reveal It.
People miss the mark of the high calling in Christ Jesus because they fail to abide in the Vine (John 15:7). Jesus is our example; He overcame Satan's temptations by the Word of God. Jesus knew He was the Son of God, so after His forty-day fast when Satan played upon his hunger to cause Him to prove His authority by serving His fleshly desires, but He being under preeminence to God did only what the Father showed Him in a vision and spoke only what He heard from the Father. He was not about to serve the senses of His flesh and mortal spirit at Satan's suggestion. That would have been human reasoning, not faith, and it would not have worked. He responded with the Word: "It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceeds out of the mouth of God".
Next Satan tempted Him to promote his ministry by a public display of the Supernatural, and taking Him to a high place in the temple, he quoted Scripture: "If You are the Son of God, throw yourself down: for it is written, He shall give His angels charge concerning you: and in their hands they shall bear You up, lest at any time You dash Your foot against a stone".
Jesus replied, "It is written again, you shall not tempt the Lord Your God." Those with gifts and authorities should wait upon the Lord as His servants, allowing Him to use His gifts through them, not presume to usurp His power for personal glorification. Moses did that when he smote the rock a second time and God forbade him from entering the Promised Land.
Finally, Satan offered to forfeit his world dominion to Jesus, enabling him to avoid Calvary's cross if only he would worship him. Had Jesus accepted Satan's offer He would have forfeited our lives and there could be no eternal Kingdom, which is now being built upon brotherly love and reconciliation (I John 5:14-16; II Corinthians 5:18-21). Those building a New World Order without Christ have accepted the offer Jesus refused, and forfeited eternal Life. Thus Jesus rebuked Satan saying, "Be gone, Satan: for it is written, you shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve".
Jesus chose the hard way of the Lord's despised few and overcame, willingly surrendering His life and prospects of worldly glory that we might have eternal Life. And because Brother Branham also chose the hard way, God ordained that He should "finish the mystery of God" by revealing the Seven Seals. "Let us therefore study to show ourselves approved of God by rightly dividing the Word of Truth . . . and let Brotherly love continue". nl415.htm
Pass it on . . . please send this article to someone you know
Brother Grigor-Scott is a non-denominational minister who has ministered full-time since 1981, primarily to other ministers and their congregations overseas. He pastors Bible Believers' tiny congregation, and is available to teach in your church.