The American Wisdom Series

Pamphlet 1505
John chapter 5

Many people today have the very Word of God in their midst, right on their coffee table or book shelf. Of course they usually refer to it as the Bible, not the Word of God! Think about it!

In chapter 5 we are going to see Jesus heal an Impotent Man. This occasion will be the third of Jesus' eight miracles as recorded by the disciple whom Jesus loved.

John 5:1
After this there was a feast of the Jews; and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
The word "Jew" as used here is the Greek word Ioudaios which has more than one meaning. It can refer to a person who is of the tribe of Judah, or it can mean a person who simply resides in the land of Judea. In the latter case you would not be able to tell a person's race or religion any more than you would a person who was called a "Texan". The subject and context of that which is being discussed will usually alert you as to which meaning is intended.

And although it doesn't say specifically, the feast for which Jesus went up to Jerusalem was most likely the Feast of Purim, which the Jews to this day celebrate in commemoration of Esther.

[2] Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches.
The sheep market, also known as the "sheep gate", was a spacious enclosure with buildings for housing sacrificial animals near the pool. There were five porches, which were actually arches or colonnades, that surrounded the Bethesda pool. Five in Biblical numerics is the number denoting "grace" (see appendix 10, the Companion Bible), which is fitting for the name Bethesda means "house of mercy".

Note: "Beth" is a Hebrew word which means "house". So Beth-esda means "house of kindness or mercy".  Beth-lehem means "house of bread", Beth-el means "house of God", Beth-saida means "house of fishing", Beth-aven means "house of vanity", etc. That's all, I'm out of beth!

[3] In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.
So here we have a great multitude of "ill" people who are crippled and blind, waiting, as we shall see in verse 4, for a "chance" that a "tradition of men" might heal them. Is this not just like it is today? "I'll go to a faith healer and see if it works."  And the people are at the pool by the sheep gate where the sacrificial animals are kept awaiting to be slaughtered. How apropos!

Here's what was commonly believed and why they were gathered:

[4] For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.
For [it was said] that an angel went down and stirred the water and the first one who stepped in got healed.

Now you can imagine this scene with people crowded all over the place and hanging around these 5 arches waiting to be the first to jump into the pool. Verse 13 let's us know that there was a great multitude, i.e. a huge crowd.

And the problem is, I can't find anywhere where it is written that there were any judges or referees to determine who was "numero uno" in the pool, but just knowing human nature, I'm sure there were problems. I can see it now... so here comes the water... 1, 2, 3... or "on your mark", "get set", "jump". "I'm healed, I'm healed!", screams hypochondriac number one. "No, I was first in the pool!"

Oh well, did we mention that the water was intermittent from the upper springs of the waters of Gihon?

Anyway, Jesus comes to the poolside and sees a cripple.

[5] And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.
The number 38 is used only 3 times in the old testament and only here in the New Testament. Each time it is connected with slavery. In the Old Testament people are enslaved by their unbelief and here this certain man is enslaved by disease, i.e. he was a paralytic. So in Biblical numerics the number 38 denotes slavery (see "Biblical Mathematics", by Ed. F. Vallowe).

You should "see" this whole scene as people enslaved to the traditions of men, i.e. religion, believing that which is tradition and not documented in the Word of God. Actually when you look at some of the strange beliefs of certain denominations today, by comparison, this one concerning the angel at the pool is relatively shallow, so to speak.

John 5:6
When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?

Of course Jesus was a realist and He knew this old boy was doing his best with the "religious knowledge" he was given by the religious system. It's just like Christianity today. Our people have a zeal for God, but they are ignorant of His Word. And just so you don't think I'm bashing our brothers and sisters [because I'm not, "There for but the grace of God go I"] here are the words of the apostle Paul:

Romans 10:2
For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.

[3] For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Yep, if their church tells them to "Go jump in a lake!" to be healed, or "Go go fly away" to be spared tribulation, rather than check them out in the Word of God, they believe "the blind" who are leading them, "the also blind". So we have the blinders [preachers] and the blindees [church goers].

Meanwhile, back at the pool, Jesus has just asked the crippled man, "Do you want to be made whole?" Now you should know from previous studies that Jesus was speaking "deeper" than just the flesh being made whole. Verse 14 will document it!

John 5:7
The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.
There was no doubt some pushing and shoving going on too! But not to worry, because had this man been first in the pool there wasn't any blessing or healing there anyway, though for sure many claimed to be healed. Have you watched any TV healing ministries lately?
[8] Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.
Notice Jesus didn't knock Him down on stage, but told him to "rise up"!
[9] And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath.
[10] The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.
Ok, so this man who had been crippled 38 years and is now healed rises up and starts walking around with his bed under his arms and the religious hypocrites spot him and start quoting the Talmud law from the section Sabbath 6A, which prohibits "work" on the sabbath.

Hey, you can't carry your bed around on the Sabbath day!

[11] He answered them, He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk.
That's no excuse, pal!
[12] Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?
And who gave you that order, anyway?
[13] And he that was healed wist not who it was: for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place.
The place was crowded with all these folks waiting to get into the water and Jesus easily slipped away. Isn't it ironic though, that while they are all waiting there for a "chance" to step into the pool first and be healed that the Word of God was in their midst, standing on the bank?

Note: Many people today have the very Word of God in their midst, right on their coffee table or book shelf. Of course they usually refer to it as the Bible, not the Word of God! Think about it!

[14] Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.
Again, Jesus isn't speaking of this man's "flesh" wholeness, though he was certainly healed physically. Remember Jesus said in Mark 2:9 "Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?"

Of course, the "worse thing" that can come upon you is the "wages of sin", which is eternal death, i.e. to perish. So Jesus told the man to "sin no more".

[15] The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, which had made him whole.
This is great news! A man who has been crippled and lame for 38 years has been made whole! Who in the world wouldn't be happy and joyous for this man and exceedingly respectful toward the one who had healed him?
[16] And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day.
Oh, there ARE people like that!  They not only aren't happy and joyous for the man's sake, they are PLOTTING to MURDER the healer who did the good thing!  Is it really because he had done these things on the sabbath day, or do you think they are afraid of what might happen to their "monopoly game"? We'll discuss that shortly.

Just remember that when Jesus heals someone, the healing is from within, i.e. to the inner man, and includes the opening of the eyes and the ears of those He so graciously touches:

Isaiah 29:18
And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness.
Do you have eyes to see out of the darkness and ears to hear the truth? Many of our brothers and sisters do not. The healing comes from the Word of God.

Christian, if you are going to get any benefit from reading your Bible, you had better have Christ spit on your eyes like the blind man from Bethsaida!  Better log unto #7027

We are going to "see" that the Father and the Son are one, and so much so that you cannot have one without the other!

The Jews have just accused Jesus Christ of breaking the "law" because He told the man He had "made whole" to take up his bed and walk. That meant the man would have to carry more weight than was permitted by the stupid "do's and don'ts rules" [traditions of men] of the Pharisees. Some things never change!

So the subject is the Sabbath day and here is what Jesus Christ had to say about it:

John 5:17
But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.
Let's read this verse in some of the other translations so we see more clearly what Christ is saying.
John 5:17
"... My Father is still working and I am working." (R.S.V.)

John 5:17
"... My Father is still at work and therefore I work as well." (Phillips)

John 5:17
"... As my Father has continued working to this hour, so I work too." (Moffat)

Remember, the subject is the Sabbath and Jesus is saying to the Pharisees, "My Father has had no sabbath-cessation from the beginning until now and neither do I. The plain fact is that Jesus Christ paid no attention whatsoever to their traditions regarding the Sabbath.

And yet there are denominations who maintain that Christians should keep a Saturday Sabbath. Well, if you are a Christian, then you are a priest of God, and priests work on the Sabbath, don't they? In fact, if you are a Child of Light [1 Thes. 5:5 "Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.] then there is never even night!

So we will continue working in the field "all this day" until He who became our Sabbath [which means "Rest"] returns at the 7th Trump and ushers in the 7th Day, the Millennium. Then we'll work our buns off for that 1000 years too!

Rev. 20:6
Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
Let's return to John where the Jews were just livid because Christ not only disregarded their Sabbath, but said that God was His Father.  The Pharisees not only didn't believe in any 1st Amendment Rights, but a statement like that, miracles or no miracles, is worthy of death, don't you think?

Note: If the Pharisees could have gotten our "Hate Crime" laws passed through the Roman Senate, they could have made the prosecution and crucifixion of Jesus even easier.

[18] Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
And they will eventually kill the Messiah. But will it really be because He violated their religious laws? The answer is contained in the Parable of the Vineyard in Luke 20. Remember there was a certain man who planted a vineyard and kept sending his servants to bring back fruit. But they were all beaten and wounded so he sent his beloved son. Here's what happened:
Luke 20:13-15
Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.

[14] But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.

[15] So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him...

And so the legacy of the first murderer, Cain, continues. We will document that the Pharisees are indeed the descendents of Cain when we get to chapter 8 of this Gospel of John.

John 5:19
Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.
I'll bet that made their phylacteries curl!
[20] For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
That's right. Just wait 'till He raises folks from the dead! In fact, just wait until He Himself rises from the dead!
[21] For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.
[22] For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:
The Father is not going to do the judging. You see, Christ is in total charge of ALL JUDGMENT. So, guess what? If you don't believe in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, you don't know God the Father. Period! So don't let anyone tell you that their father is our Father, or their rock is our Rock, if they don't have the Son. The testing of the fruit is real easy.

Perhaps we should hear the Son of God, the Word of God, explain it:

John 5:23
That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.
No Son, no Father! And just so we know, the writer of this Gospel, John, will expound upon this in his epistles.

Here's one example:

1 John 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.

Do not be deceived, there is only one way to receive eternal life and that's through "He who paid the price on the Cross!"

Here are Christ's words again:
John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

The word "condemnation" is better translated "judgment" and is in fact the very same word as "judgment" in verse 22. So what Christ is saying is since He does all the judging, if you hear His word, and believe on Him then He won't be judging you, because He'll grant you eternal life, the granting of which is TOTALLY UP TO HIM.

Now that you understand that, we will learn that since God is completely fair, non-interfering, and not a respecter of persons, that means that to be granted eternal life by Christ, i.e. to receive eternal life, is really TOTALLY UP TO YOU!

Remember that Jesus Christ has been given all authority in heaven and earth. Yet He came to this earth as the Lamb of God to make possible the salvation of the sons of God.

John 5:25
Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.
There is much said in this verse, so let's expand it a little. There are actually two times and two sets of "dead" people Jesus is referring to.  Jesus said to the Pharisees (vs. 33 will show to whom he is speaking) that there is an hour coming, which will be the hour of His crucifixion (the ninth hour of  Mark 15:34), and now is, meaning even as He is speaking to them, that the "dead" (both those who have died up to now, not having received the promise because He hasn't yet paid the price, and the "dead" in sin to whom He is speaking) shall hear His voice, meaning they will hear Him offer salvation. And they that hear, which means they that take heed and accept Him, shall live [receive eternal life]. Whew!

Actually, it's pretty simple. If you are familiar with I Peter 3:19-20 then you know that as soon as Jesus was crucified and paid the price, He went to paradise and offered salvation to all those who had died [and were held captive by sin] from creation up to the crucifixion, and many washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb, meaning they accepted Him. And of course the Pharisees to whom He was speaking could have accepted Him, but they didn't.

The fact is we are all "dead" in sins until we accept Christ, and it is only He who can make us alive [grant us eternal life]. Read Ephesians chapter 2. Here are some highlights:

Ephes. 2:1
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;

Ephes. 2:5
Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

"Quickened" means "made alive".
John 5:26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;

[27] And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

Again, it worth repeating many times; Jesus Christ has been given ALL power in both heaven and in earth. Matthew 28:18 "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth."

And it is written throughout the Old Testament of this One who would come, even the Son of Man, in whom all authority is vested:

Daniel 7:13
I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.
And because He is the Son of Man, God gave Him authority over all people and nations.
[14] And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.
John 5:28
Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
"All that are in the graves" is a figure of speech meaning all those who have died in the flesh. Keep in mind that no soul perishes until the lake of fire consumes them after the Millennium. Even Satan himself is currently alive and well and will soon be on his way.

Note: There was a miracle performed when Jesus rose from dead in which certain well-known-to-the-townsfolk people would appear to come forth from their graves and walk about town to document that the One crucified was indeed the Messiah. But verse 5:28 is not talking about that event as verse 29 clearly shows.

[29] And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
This is not referring to any particular timeframe. It's just that some will make it [receive eternal life] and some won't make it [and will perish].

Notice though that two resurrections are mentioned in this verse: 1 = resurrection to life, 2 = resurrection to judgment [death].

Note: Though we don't have the space nor time to do an in-depth study about "resurrections" here, you should know that there is much confusion in the denominations of Christianity concerning the subject of resurrections. This is mainly due to the lack of scholarship and understanding about the original words and their English translations. A simple study of "rise", "raised", "resurrected", etc. will clarify things greatly.

In short, as Paul writes in 1 Cor. 15, all people when they die are "raised" [resurrected] to a spiritual [an incorruptible, non-bleeding, pain-free] body.This resurrection then is simply a change of bodies and has absolutely nothing to do with salvation or eternal life, i.e. mortality or immortality.

In addition to that change, as we just read in John 5:29, and again as Paul writes in 1 Cor. 15, some people receive eternal life, i.e. they are resurrected, elevated or raised, to eternal life [immortality], and some will remain mortal and eventually perish in the lake of fire.

And it is written that there are two (2) times that eternal life is granted. The first is called, you guessed it, the 1st Resurrection, which is when those who are Christ's at His coming [the elect] along with those who have overcome in this earth age are given, elevated, raised, etc. to the status of eternal life. There are many advantages to being in this first resurrection, like receiving a "double portion" of the inheritance.

The second granting of eternal life occurs after the Millennium and is for those who are saved during the Millennium.This is the second resurrection. It is also at this time that the lake of fire is brought into existence at which time Satan and those who don't make it will walk into it and perish, gone forever and ever.

Having read that, the next thought that comes to one's mind is that the choice is entirely up to the freewill of each individual. And that is exactly what Jesus addresses next.

John 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
Here is that will Christ is referring to:
2 Peter 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.
Jesus came to do the will of His Father. Now, although it is God's will that all should be saved, and that none should perish, Jesus says He will NOT INTERFERE [He can do nothing] with a person's decision UNLESS that person ASKS of his or her own free will. In other words, He can do nothing about it, otherwise it wouldn't be that person's free will, would it?

There is an exception to this intervening, and that exception is God's elect who were chosen before the foundation of this world [Eph. 1:4], in the first earth age [II Pet. 3], to be used by Him to help bring about His plan of salvation. Since they, God's elect, already "decided" in the first earth age and were justified there (Rom. 8), our Father uses them as He will. That is why there was no altar call of the disciples. That is why Paul was knocked off his horse.  (If this is something new to you then we suggest you log unto this pamphlet) #4147   Paul was not saved by any alter call!  Paul was made an apostle by the "will of God", not by the "will of Paul".

However, the point Christ is making in verse 30, and it is a major point, is that Jesus is completely just [fair] in His judgment. In other words, He doesn't arbitrarily give eternal life to whomever He singles out. If you believe and trust in Him (John 3:16), the reward is yours. If you don't, you'll get what you deserve.

But I can tell you this: Your Father wants your love because you really love Him, not because you are afraid He will fry you. Just as you want your children to genuinely love you and hug you and warm your heart, so it is with our heavenly Father.

When you think about, He has given us so much our cups cannot contain it.

So think about it, and if you find it to be true then tell Him that you love Him.

Imagine having the very Word of God standing right in front of you, speaking directly to you. Would that be enough to convert you? Not if you don't want to listen!

Imagine having the very Word of God open on the table right in front of you. Would that be enough to convert you? Not if you don't want to listen!

Let's continue seeing what the Word of God has to say to the Pharisees, to whom He is speaking directly:

John 5:31
If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.
That is why there is always at least a second witness. And although Jesus is about to remind these Pharisees that John already gave them witness, we'll find in verse 37 that there was a MUCH GREATER witness even than John. Do you know who that witness was? God the Father, Himself!
John 5:32
There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true.
This was that voice crying in the wilderness, John, and Jesus just gave him credentials and verified that his testimony was true!
[33] Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth.
Not only does this verse show that Jesus was talking to the Pharisees (John 1:24 "And they which were sent were of the Pharisees"), but these hypocrites already heard John give SCRIPTURAL DOCUMENTATION of the Messiah!  You see, John quoted scripture to them. That is how he bare witness. And that's the way His servants do it in this final generation, the generation of the fig tree.
[34] But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved.
Christ said He just wanted to remind them about John's testimony, in the event they might want to reconsider what they heard and take heed and believe in Him.
John 5:35
He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light.
He was a burning and a shining light" is a common Rabbinic idiom meaning "famous man".
[36] But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.
The miracles and healings that Christ performed were done specifically to document that Jesus was Messiah. And when He FINISHES His work on the cross (at which point He will say IT IS FINISHED) and is resurrected from the dead, what a witness that will be!  And even the calendars of man will be forever changed because of Him.
[37] And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.
[38] And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not.
Of course they had never physically seen God nor heard His voice, but that's not what Christ meant as evidenced by the third point in verse 38. Phillips translates this verse "Now you have never at any time heard what He says or seen what He is like". In other words, if you have eyes to see and ears to hear you will realize that He just told the Pharisees they DIDN'T have eyes to see or ears to hear. That is why they didn't have His Word abiding in them.

You see, the Pharisees then and their counterparts today did not and do not follow the scriptures, no, not even the Old Testament. They follow the Talmud, which are the traditions of men, and that is what abides in them, i.e. religion.

[39] Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
Here's another translation of this verse:
John 5:39
You study the scriptures diligently, supposing that in having them you have eternal life; yet, although their testimony points to me, you refuse to come to me for that life. (N.E.B.)
You must have your eyes and ears opened by the only One who can open them for you, Jesus Christ. You must go to Him and there is no other way. But some, such as these Pharisees, simply refuse Him. For yet others, their religion [church] gets in the way. The mud from their traditional teachings when cast into the water, clouds the entire pool so that they cannot see!

And as verse 39 says, the scriptures do testify of Jesus Christ. Here's just one example:

Deut. 18:15-19
The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;

[16] According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not.

Imagine this: God spoke directly to our people when they were at the foot of Mount Horeb, led there by Moses. But the people complained to Moses and said they didn't want God to speak to them anymore from that great burning mountain.

So God said, "I hear them LOUD and CLEAR"!

[17] And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken.
So guess what our Father promised them? That He would send a Prophet, a FLESH MAN, who would speak His very Words.
[18] I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.

[19] And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.

And it shall eventually come to pass that if you don't believe in Him (John 3:16), God will require your very soul, your "it".

Let's return to the "message" being delivered to the Pharisees by the Messiah Himself.

John 5:40
And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.
They still refused!

Jesus doesn't give up on them, but continues on:

[41] I receive not honour from men.
Jesus told them He doesn't seek men's approval, such as a PhD from their religious seminaries. Nor is He a people pleaser, caring one bit what people think about what He says or teaches. He speaks the Word of God straight from the Father.

Too bad most ministers today don't have the courage to speak straight from the Word of God, regardless of who might not like it! Do you think Christ is impressed when they prance on stage and say, "Let's give a big hand to Jesus"?  He just answered that question in verse 41!

[42] But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you.
Again, He is speaking to the Pharisees here, who were not even of the tribes of Israel, though they claimed to be of the seed of Abraham. They weren't! We'll document that without a doubt in chapter eight.
[43] I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.
They will listen to a PhD, and they will certainly listen to Satan, the false messiah, when he comes, performing miracles, claiming to be Jesus.!
[44] How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?
How can you believe when you are forever looking for one another's approval and seek not to please God.

Let's bring it up to today's religious leaders. Who are they trying to impress when they say "the Lord told me this, and the Lord told me that?"  The scriptures declare "God didn't tell them" (Ezek. 13).

[45] Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust.
The Pharisees claimed to believe in the Torah and the Law of Moses. Well, the law is sufficient to convict all men, so Christ didn't need to convict them.
[46] For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me.
So if they really believed Moses, they would have been bound to believe in Jesus Christ, for it was about Him that Moses wrote.  We just read it Deuteronomy!
[47] But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?
If you haven't read the scriptures or don't believe them then how can you believe Jesus?

You see, to know the Written Word of God is to know the Living Word of God. Many claim to know the Living Word today, yet 95+% of professing Christians are Biblically illiterate, i.e. they don't know the Written Word. Go figure! Therefore as Christ warned, mass deception (due to lack of knowing His Word) would be the Number One sign of this generation:

Matthew 24:3
And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

[4] And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

Take heed! This is a warning too!
[5] For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
Many shall come proclaiming that Jesus is the Messiah, claiming to be His representatives, His Christian ministers, and SHALL deceive MANY!  How?  Promise them anything! Tell them they will fly away when things heat up. Promise them prosperity if they send in tithes! Make them feel good! Put on a show! Get them to wave their hands in the air! Get them to clap for Jesus! Tell them if they don't go to church they will fry like bacon! Tell them they have to keep certain days, or use special names, or be part of this group or that! Make up just about thing you'd like! Knock them down on stage, talk gibberish like a turkey, BUT, as long as you tell them you're a Christian minister and Jesus is the Messiah, they will follow like lemmings and march into the sea and drown, no questions asked!

You'd better know the Written Word in this final generation or someone has a big pair of clippers waiting to shear your soul!

To study the Bible is the noblest of all pursuits; to understand it, the highest of all goals.
We pray that with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, you accomplish both.

The "American Wisdom Series"


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