Sunday, December 17, 2017

Sunday sermon- 12-10-17

SUNDAY SERMON  12-10-17

But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.


And for a spirit of judgment to him that sitteth in judgment, and for strength to them that turn the battle to the gate.


ON VIDEO-
.Verses from the Mass and Church Unlimited
.Your warfare is finished
.The fore runner is on the way
.Einstein and time
.Creation and the flood event
.Mars [the planet]
.Science and politics
.One day with God
.John the Baptist
.Qumran community and the Essenes https://www.gotquestions.org/Essenes.html 
.John baptizes Jesus
.Herod’s slaughter of the children
.Kingdoms in conflict
.Dead Sea Scrolls
.Reliability of scripture


NEW-
I talked on the verses from the Sunday Mass and a few from Church Unlimited-
I’ll add my past teachings below and try and simply share a point or 2 here-

The reading from the Old Testament focused on the calling of John the Baptist-
Isaiah 40:3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Isaiah 40:4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:
And in the reading from the gospel we see the fulfillment-
Mark 1:2 As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
Mark 1:3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Mark 1:4 John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.
John came out of nowhere if you will- some scholars think John was part of the Qumran community- these were Jews who separated themselves and lived a solitary life-

Whether John was an Essene I don’t know-
But he was certainly a culture shock to the people he preached to-
He was dressed like a wild prophet- wore camels skins and ate locusts and honey-
Mark 1:6 And John was clothed with camel's hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts and wild honey;
Yet- he was sent by God- and was spoken about some 600 years before he appeared on the scene-
Even Malachi prophesied about him-
Malachi 3:1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the LORD, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
Jesus himself said this was speaking about John-
Matthew 11:7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
Matthew 11:8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses.
Matthew 11:9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
Matthew 11:10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
Matthew 11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
Being we are in the chapter- he also said John fulfilled the Elijah prophecy as well-
Matthew 11:12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
Matthew 11:13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
Matthew 11:14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias [Elijah] which was for to come.
We find this prophecy in Malachi as well-
Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
Malachi 4:6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
So John comes on the scene- challenges the authorities of his day-
And has the great honor of baptizing Jesus himself-
Mark 1:9 And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan.
Mark 1:10 And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:
Mark 1:11 And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
I taught the whole gospel of Mark this past year and will add any past teaching that relates below-
The passage from Peter talked about being ready for the coming of the Lord- the Day of God-
2Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
2Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
2Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
2Peter 3:11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
2Peter 3:12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
2Peter 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
2Peter 3:14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
I also applied the principle of time- and how God is not limited by time- as we are.
Of course had to get into Einstein again-
But the practical point I tried to make was when we have a day in the presence of God-
Then simply having that communion with God-
Can in a way accomplish a ‘years’ worth of trying to do something in the flesh- by our own ability- without that ‘day’ or time in the presence of God-\
Get it?
2Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
Ok- talked about much more- but for this brief intro- I’ll end it here-

God bless all-
John

Other links- [Other stuff I talked about on today’s video]

PAST POSTS-
EPHESIANS- LINKS


MONDAY 2-27-17
Isaiah 42:1
Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.
https://youtu.be/ZqN2KEmxBRk JERSEY CITY [Mark 1]
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2017/02/2-27-17-jersey-city-ride-mark-1.zip
ON VIDEO [Past links- verses below]
.See Jersey City- Journal square- Kennedy Blvd. to 41st st.
.CNN and Jesus?
.John who?
.Why no miracles before Jesus baptism?
.Alone with God
.Who said this ‘Prayer is strength for the weak’?
.Another Mustang story
NEW- Took a drive thru Jersey City and did the video from the car.
In Mark 1 we read about the forerunner- John the Baptist.
He baptized in water but said ‘a mightier one is coming- he will baptize you with the Spirit’.
Sure enough- Jesus shows up and John baptizes him in the Jordan.
As Jesus comes up out of the water we hear ‘this is my beloved Son- in whom I am well pleased’.
The Father is testifying of the Son.
Jesus is now anointed for the 3 year earthly ministry we read about in the gospels.
He begins going to the synagogues and preaching- casting out demons.
The people are shocked ‘he preaches with authority- not like the regular preachers we are used to’.
Jesu beings gathering his team of men- and the crowds are being drawn.
Yet- he seems to be avoiding the crowds.
He heals a leper and tells the man not to spread the word about it.
Yet the man ‘blazes’ the matter to everyone.
The Spirit descending on Jesus like a ‘dove’ was right before his temptation of 40 days- in the wilderness- by satan.
It was this test that prepared him for the work.
We read in another gospel that he returned in the power of the Spirit after his temptation.
The same Spirit that anointed Jesus also is now with us.
The Spirit of God is in all who believe-and that same Spirit empowers us for the task.
Jesus rose up early in the morning and went to a place where he could be alone with the Father.
Even after the anointing of the Spirit- and the test- yet he taught us to have ‘alone time’ with God.
Jesus told his men ‘Pray- the spirt indeed is willing- but the flesh is weak’.
In this chapter we see the beginning of the ministry of Jesus- and his proclamation that the kingdom of God is near.
He called the people to repentance- and to believe the good news of the kingdom.
John [the Baptist] served his purpose well- he introduced the Lamb of God- and then fades from the scene.
Yes- John showed us what it was all about.
26 And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him.
27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven.
28 Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him.
29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.
30 He must increase, but I must decrease.
PAST LINKS- [My past teaching that relates to today’s post]
https://ccoutreach87.com/hebrews-updated-2015/
https://ccoutreach87.com/john-complete-links-added/
https://ccoutreach87.com/romans-updated-2015/
https://ccoutreach87.com/2017/01/18/acts-1/
https://ccoutreach87.com/2017/01/26/acts-2/
https://ccoutreach87.com/2017/02/02/acts-3/
https://ccoutreach87.com/2017/02/09/acts-4/
VERSES- [I quoted/talked from 3 accounts of the baptism of Jesus and the temptation of Jesus as recorded in the gospels- below are all 3 accounts- as well as the verses I quoted on the video]
Mark 1:1 The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;
Mark 1:2 As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
Mark 1:3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Mark 1:4 John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.
Mark 1:5 And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins.
Mark 1:6 And John was clothed with camel’s hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts and wild honey;
Mark 1:7 And preached, saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose.
Mark 1:8 I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.
Mark 1:9 And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan.
Mark 1:10 And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:
Mark 1:11 And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
Mark 1:12 And immediately the spirit driveth him into the wilderness.
Mark 1:13 And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.
Mark 1:14 Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,
Mark 1:15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
Mark 1:16 Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
Mark 1:17 And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.
Mark 1:18 And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him.
Mark 1:19 And when he had gone a little farther thence, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets.
Mark 1:20 And straightway he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.
Mark 1:21 And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synagogue, and taught.
Mark 1:22 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes.
Mark 1:23 And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out,
Mark 1:24 Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.
Mark 1:25 And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.
Mark 1:26 And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him.
Mark 1:27 And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him.
Mark 1:28 And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee.
Mark 1:29 And forthwith, when they were come out of the synagogue, they entered into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.
Mark 1:30 But Simon’s wife’s mother lay sick of a fever, and anon they tell him of her.
Mark 1:31 And he came and took her by the hand, and lifted her up; and immediately the fever left her, and she ministered unto them.
Mark 1:32 And at even, when the sun did set, they brought unto him all that were diseased, and them that were possessed with devils.
Mark 1:33 And all the city was gathered together at the door.
Mark 1:34 And he healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew him.
Mark 1:35 And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.
Mark 1:36 And Simon and they that were with him followed after him.
Mark 1:37 And when they had found him, they said unto him, All men seek for thee.
Mark 1:38 And he said unto them, Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth.
Mark 1:39 And he preached in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and cast out devils.
Mark 1:40 And there came a leper to him, beseeching him, and kneeling down to him, and saying unto him, If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.
Mark 1:41 And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean.
Mark 1:42 And as soon as he had spoken, immediately the leprosy departed from him, and he was cleansed.
Mark 1:43 And he straitly charged him, and forthwith sent him away;
Mark 1:44 And saith unto him, See thou say nothing to any man: but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing those things which Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them.
Mark 1:45 But he went out, and began to publish it much, and to blaze abroad the matter, insomuch that Jesus could no more openly enter into the city, but was without in desert places: and they came to him from every quarter.
________________________________________
Matthew 3:1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
Matthew 3:2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Matthew 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Matthew 3:4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
Matthew 3:5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
Matthew 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Matthew 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
Matthew 3:9 And 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.
Matthew 3:10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Matthew 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
Matthew 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
Matthew 3:13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
Matthew 3:14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
Matthew 3:15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
Matthew 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
Matthew 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
________________________________________
Matthew 4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
Matthew 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.
Matthew 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Matthew 4:5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
Matthew 4:6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Matthew 4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
Matthew 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
Matthew 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
Matthew 4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
Matthew 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
4 And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,
2 Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.
3 And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread.
4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
5 And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.
8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
9 And he brought him to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence:
10 For it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee:
11 And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.
14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about.
Matthew 26:41
Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
In Context | Full Chapter | Other Translations
16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.
17 And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,
18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
20 And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.
21 And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.
Luke
Hebrews 4:15
For 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.
In Context | Full Chapter | Other Translations
Matthew 6:6
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
In Context | Full Chapter | Other Translations
Romans 8:9
But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
In Context | Full Chapter | Other Translations
Deuteronomy 32:2
My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass:
In Context | Full Chapter | Other Translations
(1145) THE FLOOD- Okay, this is a hot topic. First, the flood really happened! Some old earth creationists insist on a local version of it, others say it was worldwide [I’m in the world wide camp]. God tells Noah to embark on a very long building program. He certainly looks like a nut to those around him. Eventually the Ark is finished and Noah and his family get in, they bring 7 of every clean animal and 2 of every ‘unclean’ type. It rains [some say 40 days and nights, others think it rained longer] and the ‘fountains of the deep are opened up’ obviously a reference to some type of Tectonic action. After everything dies, the Ark rests and Noah and his family repopulate the planet. The young earth creationists have good arguments from this story [real event!] some of the old earth brothers tend to trivialize it. Ever since the science of geology gained ground [19th-20th centuries] many have argued for a very old earth based on the geologic table. They look at the different strata of the earth [levels] and say ‘see, these levels took millions of years to develop, you have dinosaurs buried in the lower levels, then other types of animals, birds and then man is rarely found fossilized’ these brothers see a sort of scientific record that backs up the progressive creation view. They say the creation days are ages, and the science shows us deep time. Are there any other explanations for the various fossil levels? Yes. The young earth brothers will make a very good argument that the cataclysmic effect of the flood caused the levels. They say the reason you find dinosaurs and other land animals at lower levels is a result of natural panic and survival during the flood. The slower, heavier animals would die first and get buried first. The birds lasted longer of course; they kept flying to high land until they too died off. Man was the smartest of the bunch, he managed to survive longest, and that’s why you don’t find as many fossils of man as you do other creatures [those who die late would not get covered in sediment and would simply rot!] This argument isn’t that bad, to be honest. There are of course many other things besides this, the point I want to make is if you rule out the biblical record of a world wide flood, then you are leaving out other interpretations of the data. Most young and old earth brothers agree on the actual record [i.e.; we do see things buried at different levels] they simply disagree on the interpretation of the data. Lets do a few practical things here, God had Noah prepare things ahead of time. He also spent some down time in a huge boat with a ‘lot of dung’ [ouch!] Often times on the journey we hit spots that don’t look [or smell] that great. People might even mock us ‘look at that idiot Noah, he’s even got his family believing in this stuff!’ but when it was all said and done he was vindicated. Those who tend to spiritualize the stories of Genesis usually see the first 11 chapters as a mix of symbol and history. The genealogies of chapters 4, 5 and 11 are sometimes seen as not exact [by the way, in the last entry I used Enoch as an example of the ascension, the Enoch who was taken up was the Enoch of chapter 5]. The reasons are various [like the other ancient near east genealogies used 10 generation lists, both chapter 5 and 11 are 10 generation lists]. Some do this in order to fit more time into the biblical record. Jesus, Peter and the writer of Hebrews all speak of Noah and his flood as a real historic event! There should be no reason for believers to doubt or spiritualize these stories away. But we also want to be open to the reality that other cultures had their own tellings of these stories, and that the recording of genealogies does not mean there is no room for an older earth [the genealogies are accurate, but they don’t start right at the beginning of time!]. And let’s finish in a practical way, are you going thru a season of feeling stuck in a big box with a lot of dung? Sometimes the word of the Lord to us is ‘just survive at this time, when the storms over things will look better again’. The Lord used Noah to have an influence on the entire civilization that would re-populate the planet! God will increase your influence if you simply find a way to survive the flood.

There were Jews at the time of the first century who tried to ‘get along’ with Rome- and with the person in charge of their region [one of the sons of Herod the Great at the time of Christ].
These are referred to as Herodian’s in the bible.
Some wanted a revolution to rid Rome from Jerusalem- these were the Zealots [one of Jesus disciples was in this group].
Some thought if they returned to a legalistic obeisance of the law- that this would bring in a deliverer- like the stories we read about in the Old testament- these were the Pharisees.
And some took more of a political compromise- these were the Sadducees.
Eventually a war with Rome would be fought [By the way- Josephus- the famous 1st century historian- fought on the side of the Jews in the war- and after Jerusalem was sacked in A.D. 70- he went to Rome and wrote his great works- thinking he would make a case for the Jewish people with the Romans. This is why we have his works today- which are very valuable to scholars].
NOTE- In time I’ll try and cover how we ‘got our bibles’ [called the Canon- meaning Rule/ Measurement].
Frankly- there is a lot of confusion in the general public about conspiracies [like the Catholic Church had some type of plot to keep certain books out].
Or stories about how the Church taught Mary Magdalene was a prostitute so they could discredit her.
Actually- we read in the gospels that Jesus cast out ‘spirits’ from a woman who was probably living this type of life-
And Jesus had a ministry to the down and out- it is indeed possible that Mary was one of these women-
And if true- it would not demean her in any way-
That’s how this tradition more than likely developed- But- we don’t know for sure.
So a few years back the Church officially said ‘we don’t know’.
Ok- Plot?
[parts]
Ok- the ruling empire at the time of Christ was Rome- just prior to the appearance of Jesus- the Roman Emperor- Caesar Augustus- consolidated the Roman Empire under his rule-
Rome was ruled by a senate- some famous names from history were in it- Cicero being one.
Caesar Augustus was the nephew of Julius Caesar- his real name was Octavian [Octavius].
After the death of Julius Caesar- there were some power struggles that took place- between some other famous people.
Marc Antony being one of them [Cleopatra too- he was in love with the girl for sure].
Now- we read about Augustus in the New Testament- and we read in the book of Revelation about the Mark of the Beast- and that those who don't worship- give homage to the Beast- they will be killed.
So- Many Christians would be killed because they would refuse to give homage to Caesar Augustus [meaning son of the Divine].
‘Wow- how did he get a name like that’ [there was more than one Caesar by the way- as well as more than one Herod- who did play a part in these power struggles- it can get confusing- even to me].
When Octavian defeated Marc Antony at Actium [32 BC].
Herod [The Great] had a problem- he had previously sided with Antony and found himself on the losing side.
Yet he was smart- did some ‘brown nosing’ as we say-and patched things up.
Herod had 3 sons- who would eventually take positions of authority in the Roman government at the time of Christ.
Herod Antipas was over the region that we read about in the New Testament where Jesus did most of his ministry- Galilee.
Ok- Octavian claimed deity because of a heavenly sign associated with his rise to power- and this is how he became called ‘Caesar Augustus’.
He sort of saw himself as a   ‘re-incarnate’- of his great uncle Julius Caesar.
‘John- what in the heck does this have to do with the Dead Sea Scrolls’.
Ok- good question.
The Jews had various responses to the empires that ruled over them during various times.
Alexander the Great instituted Hellenization- a sort of cultural compromise over the people he conquered.
They could keep their religious/cultural roots- but would be subservient to Alexander and Greek rule.
Some Jewish people rejected any compromise- we call them the Essenes- they moved out of town- so to speak, and lived in what we refer to as the Qumran community.
This was a few centuries before the time of Christ- and this was where the Dead Seas Scrolls were found in the 20th century.
A Bedouin boy was looking for his goats- threw a rock in a cave right off the Dead Sea- and that’s how we found the scrolls.
The scrolls might have been hidden there by the Essenes-
Now- when my friends asked me about them- I told them that it’s been a while since I read up on any of this- but to the best of my memory the thing that made them significant was the fact that they were very old manuscripts- from the bible- and they backed up what we had had all along.
I did read up this week- and basically had it right.
The earliest Hebrew manuscripts of the Old Testament we had previously dated back to around 900- 1000 A.D.
These manuscripts went back about 1000 years earlier- and they contained portions from almost every book of the Old testament- and some complete books.
The only book missing was Esther.
So- this was indeed a very significant find for scholars.
But the Scrolls also contain some of the writings from the Essenes themselves- things we never had before- so this too was significant.
There were Jews at the time of the first century who tried to ‘get along’ with Rome- and with the person in charge of their region [one of the sons of Herod the Great at the time of Christ].
These are referred to as Herodian’s in the bible.
Some wanted a revolution to rid Rome from Jerusalem- these were the Zealots [one of Jesus disciples was in this group].
Some thought if they returned to a legalistic obeisance of the law- that this would bring in a deliverer- like the stories we read about in the Old testament- these were the Pharisees.
And some took more of a political compromise- these were the Sadducees.
Eventually a war with Rome would be fought [By the way- Josephus- the famous 1st century historian- fought on the side of the Jews in the war- and after Jerusalem was sacked in A.D. 70- he went to Rome and wrote his great works- thinking he would make a case for the Jewish people with the Romans. This is why we have his works today- which are very valuable to scholars].
NOTE- In time I’ll try and cover how we ‘got our bibles’ [called the Canon- meaning Rule/ Measurement].
Frankly- there is a lot of confusion in the general public about conspiracies [like the Catholic Church had some type of plot to keep certain books out].
Or stories about how the Church taught Mary Magdalene was a prostitute so they could discredit her.
Actually- we read in the gospels that Jesus cast out ‘spirits’ from a woman who was probably living this type of life-
And Jesus had a ministry to the down and out- it is indeed possible that Mary was one of these women-
And if true- it would not demean her in any way-
That’s how this tradition more than likely developed- But- we don’t know for sure.
So a few years back the Church officially said ‘we don’t know’.
Ok- Plot?
No- just being careful.
So there are other misguided beliefs like this- that sincere people have- and over time I hope to get to them.
I’ll do one more in keeping with this post.
I mentioned above that Caesar Augustus did indeed take the title of ‘son of God’.
And some critics of the Church say ‘see- there were all types of religions that had Sons of God’.
I watched one show a few years back- and it stated that these religions had ’12 disciples- a leader named Lord and Savior- and he healed and claimed to be God’s Son- and rose from the dead’.
Ok- that show was ‘fibbing’ to put it lightly- they went too far [historically speaking] in trying to diminish the Christians claim of Christ by doing this.
Now- is there some truth to this at all?
Yes- like I just mentioned above- Octavian did indeed claim deity- a ‘son of god’.
So- how do we explain this?
In the book of Galatians the bible says ‘in the FULLNESS of times God sent forth his Son’.
Jesus came at a set time in history- in fulfilment of the Jewish Prophets- to be who he was- and to do what he did.
Now- this is not special pleading here- but I find it a masterpiece that God’s Son came at a time when the Roman Empire had one sitting on the throne- who too claimed deity.
Yet Jesus was in a region of the lower class- his men were not highly educated- and his followers were people under oppression.
Augustus lived in the wealthy and influential capital of ‘the world’- he had all you could ever ask for- he was worshiped as a god.
Yet in 3 short centuries- one of the heirs of the empire- Constantine- would have an experience – not with a former Caesar- but with a vison of a Cross-
He would convert to Christianity- and declare Christianity to be the religion of the realm.

[parts]

VERSES- [These are the verses I either quoted or taught on today’s post- Sunday Sermon- 12-10-17]
And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.

Luke 2:41-52King James Version (KJV)

41 Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the passover.
42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast.
43 And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem; and Joseph and his mother knew not of it.
44 But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day's journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance.
45 And when they found him not, they turned back again to Jerusalem, seeking him.
46 And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions.
47 And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.
48 And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.
49 And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?
50 And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.
51 And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart.
52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.
In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.
Fear thou notfor I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.




December 10, 2017


« December 9  |  December 11 »

Second Sunday of Advent
Lectionary: 5

Reading 1IS 40:1-5, 9-11

Comfort, give comfort to my people,
says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her
that her service is at an end,
her guilt is expiated;
indeed, she has received from the hand of the LORD
double for all her sins.

A voice cries out:
In the desert prepare the way of the LORD!
Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God!
Every valley shall be filled in,
every mountain and hill shall be made low;
the rugged land shall be made a plain,
the rough country, a broad valley.
Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed,
and all people shall see it together;
for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.

Go up on to a high mountain,
Zion, herald of glad tidings;
cry out at the top of your voice,
Jerusalem, herald of good news!
Fear not to cry out
and say to the cities of Judah:
Here is your God!
Here comes with power
the Lord GOD,
who rules by his strong arm;
here is his reward with him,
his recompense before him.
Like a shepherd he feeds his flock;
in his arms he gathers the lambs,
carrying them in his bosom,
and leading the ewes with care.

Responsorial PsalmPS 85:9-10-11-12, 13-14

R. (8) Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.
I will hear what God proclaims;
the LORD—for he proclaims peace to his people.
Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him,
glory dwelling in our land.
R. Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.
Kindness and truth shall meet;
justice and peace shall kiss.
Truth shall spring out of the earth,
and justice shall look down from heaven.
R. Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.
The LORD himself will give his benefits;
our land shall yield its increase.
Justice shall walk before him,
and prepare the way of his steps.
R. Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.

Reading 22 PT 3:8-14

Do not ignore this one fact, beloved,
that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years
and a thousand years like one day.
The Lord does not delay his promise, as some regard "delay,"
but he is patient with you,
not wishing that any should perish
but that all should come to repentance.
But the day of the Lord will come like a thief,
and then the heavens will pass away with a mighty roar
and the elements will be dissolved by fire,
and the earth and everything done on it will be found out.

Since everything is to be dissolved in this way,
what sort of persons ought you to be,
conducting yourselves in holiness and devotion,
waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God,
because of which the heavens will be dissolved in flames
and the elements melted by fire.
But according to his promise
we await new heavens and a new earth
in which righteousness dwells.
Therefore, beloved, since you await these things,
be eager to be found without spot or blemish before him, at peace.

AlleluiaLK 3:4, 6

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths:
All flesh shall see the salvation of God.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 1:1-8

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ the Son of God.

As it is written in Isaiah the prophet:
Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you;
he will prepare your way.
A voice of one crying out in the desert:
"Prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight his paths."
John the Baptist appeared in the desert
proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
People of the whole Judean countryside
and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem
were going out to him
and were being baptized by him in the Jordan River
as they acknowledged their sins.
John was clothed in camel's hair,
with a leather belt around his waist.
He fed on locusts and wild honey.
And this is what he proclaimed:
"One mightier than I is coming after me.
I am not worthy to stoop and loosen the thongs of his sandals.
I have baptized you with water;
he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."





Note- Please do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on-  Copy text- download video links [Wordpress- Vimeo] make complete copies of my books/studies and posts- everything is copyrighted by me- I give permission for all to copy and share as much as you like-  I just ask that nothing be sold. We live in an online world- yet- there is only one internet- meaning if it ever goes down- the only access to the teachings are what others have copied or downloaded- so feel free to copy and download as much as you want- it’s all free-
Thanks- John.