Prayer for Financial Miracle – Breakthrough Blessings – A Miracle Prayer – Powerful Words to Pray

A Miracle Prayer - Powerful Words to Pray - Financial Miracle Prayer - Blessing and Breakthrough

Many things can happen to us in life that can lead to financial difficulty – such as the loss of a job, a business getting into unexpected difficulty, or even having a baby. Here are three prayers you can pray to ask God for help with the restoration of your financial affairs. Also further down on this page are quotes from the bible which remind us that God provides for all our needs as we trust in Him, and the famous prayer of Jabez, who approached God with great boldness, and saw a remarkable answer to his prayer.

Prayer for financial miracle

O Lord,

You placed the stars in the sky.
You created a myriad of beautiful life.
You gave us our breathe and water to drink.
You are a living Lord.
You are my Saviour, in whom I trust.
Please rescue me from this financial crisis,
Come redeem this situation.
I ask for your almighty hand to come and cover me.
Give me wisdom and strength to stand strong through this storm.
I ask for a miracle by your redeeming love.
Please restore me, lead me to a safe place, a secure place,
A place of financial balance.

In you I trust.

Amen.

 

Financial blessing prayer

Dear God,

Bless the work of our hands, the work of our minds and the work of our hearts.
May each day be an offering of worship to you.
May your goodness flow through our every deed.
And may you keep us, shelter us, protect us and feed us.
That we may be blessed with the finances we need,
And have the love and grace to give generously to all that are in need.

Amen.

 

Prayer for favor

(a prayer for God’s blessing on an event or situation)
Father,

Please cover this situation with your loving hand.
Bring your peace, healing and hope.
Hold us close and keep our hearts and minds safe.
We ask that the power of your truth would turn things around and bring your light and love.
We choose to rest in your Almighty hand, knowing that you are our fortress in times of struggle.
Thank you that you will protect us from all harm.

Amen.

 

Prayer for financial release

(a prayer for release from debt)

Heavenly Father,

I know that heaven is the treasure, that if I were to count the blessings of love, family and friendship I am rich beyond telling.
And yet, I confess I feel poor, that this financial debt weighs on my heart, fills my mind and grieves my soul.
O God, I can not see a way free, and despite all my hard work and efforts I still live under this debt.
Please, come and renew my mind, set it free as I leave this burden at the foot of the cross.
Help me to understand your heart for me, to breathe, live and love in your freedom. Lord, I put my trust in you, and ask for a miracle, for finances that free me from these chains.

Please hold my family and me.
Keep us all safe until that time when we are truly free.

Amen.

Read more: https://www.living-prayers.com/petitions/prayer_for_finances.html#ixzz5fbu2Yp64

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TOP Prayer for Financial Help From God – Prayer for Financial Blessing – Blessing of Abraham

Strong PRAYER IN FINANCIAL CRISIS - Miracle Financial Breakthrough - Prayer for Financial Blessing and Favor

We’ve all been there. The moment where you cross your fingers and pray that the bills won’t bounce. Perhaps you’ve been faced with unemployment and you have no earthly idea how you’ll be able to make next month’s rent payment. Or maybe you’re working two jobs and still can’t seem to get ahead. Financial issues can be extremely stressful and effect so many different aspects of life – both physically and emotionally.

In order to gain better control over your finances, it may be wise to consult a financial advisor who has a better idea of how to manage funds and what type of options are accessible for your specific situation. While you may believe that you have it under control and perceive no other workable solutions, getting a second opinion on your financial situation can prove to make an extreme difference. Along with professional help, it’s important to maintain your sanity with spiritual assistance. You’ll discover a financial expert’s assistance coupled with prayer will provide you with the hope and motivation you will need to overcome just about anything.

The Bible provides Christians with a number of scriptures focused on money, finances and giving. Philippians 4:19 is one of my go-to scriptures to reference when I’m facing financial issues. The verse says, “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” It’s important, despite the frustrations tough finances brings forth, to know that the Lord is always by your side. He will never give you more than you can manage and will provide the necessities to live a prosperous life. First, place your faith in the Lord and he’ll do the rest.

“Dear Lord, help me to leave my financial worries in Your Hands. Guide me to peace so that I can hear your wisdom. Keep me mindful of my blessings no matter how much or little I may have. Grant me the patience and tolerance necessary to calm my spirit knowing that you have everything under control. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Patience is a virtue that is required within so many elements of life – finances being one of those main elements. From time-to-time God’s children become so bogged down with the endless list of demands our life brings forward. The Lord understands your frustrations and sees firsthand how much work you’re putting in each day. Chin up friend – ask the Lord to grant you the necessary patience to get through this difficult financial period. While it may seem overwhelming, while you’re in the moment, remember that the Lord will always provide you with the resources you’ll need.

“O Lord, You placed the stars in the sky. You created a myriad of beautiful life. You gave us our breathe and water to drink.

You are a living Lord. You are my Savior, in whom I trust. Please rescue me from this financial crisis, Come redeem this situation. I ask for your almighty hand to come and cover me.

Give me wisdom and strength to stand strong through this storm. I ask for a miracle by your redeeming love. Please restore me, lead me to a safe place, a secure place, a place of financial balance. In you I trust. Amen.”

Jesus Christ, who is your Lord and Savior, understands better than anyone the spontaneity in life – and moreover, how those unexpected times can bring on financial burdens. If you’re going through a difficult time, ask the Lord for a miracle through prayer. A prayer for financial help from God can be a definite game changer and provide you with the resources that you need to get out of the hole. The world is filled with an insurmountable amount of solutions; however, identifying those answers can prove to be very challenging. Through prayer, ask the Lord to give you guidance coupled with the patience you’ll need to discover the financial solution you desperately need. In many cases, you’ll discover a solution that is seemingly been in front of you the entire time. In addition, this difficult financial time could also lead you to wisdom that you would have ordinarily been blind to.

Lastly, one of the strongest messages spiritual messages comes from Matthew.

These words redefine the true meaning behind necessity and desire. Often times, we as human beings, become obsessed with the materialistic aspects of things. Sometimes objects appear to be a necessity however, in fact, these items are not a vital aspect of survival.

“Our Lord challenged us in the Gospels not to worry about what we need in terms of the necessities of life such as food and clothing, but rather to “seek first the kingdom of God….and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33). He also advised us to not to worry about tomorrow, as it would take care of itself (Matthew 6:34).”

Matthew 6:33-34 are lines to memorize and revisit when you decide it’s necessary to request a prayer for financial help from God. Our Lord came face to face with so many challenges during his life – and at times he wasn’t presented with the most appealable odds. Yet, the Lord made his resources work and did his best to make sure those around him also had a livable quality of life. Before you say a prayer for financial help, reevaluate your situation and ask yourself some very important questions. Can you wake up tomorrow and survive without the money you are asking for? Will you go hungry if you do not have the financial help you’re praying to the Lord for? Will your family be in a state of destitution without these funds? If your answer is no, then you’ll discover that life is not that bad off as is. Answering these definitive questions will help to paint the reality that may be skewed in your mind. However, if your answers to those questions are yes then find comfort in knowing that the Lord will provide and hear your prayers. Always remember that your God will always be by your side.

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Prayer to make me Invisible to evil and deliverance Prayer to God and Protection of the Angels in Heavens

secret things of god's angels

O Father in Heaven. The Almighty God. The Everlasting Father. Archangels and Holy Angels. Jehovah. Elohim the Highest name that Created all Universe and all Heavens and Angels and Cherubims and Protection angels and Seraphims.

You have given most Holy and Anointed Son of God by the Holy Holy Spirit by the Baptism of the John who walked this earth to the Jesus Christ. Prince of Peace. Everlasting Father. Elohim You have given Jesus from Holy Nazaret on the Cross for the Sacrifice of our sins to be forgiven. By His Holy Blood I am Protected and covered from any concequences of the evil. By the Holy Rock and Shield of Almighty God Hide me from and eye of the evil. You are my hiding place. I take shelter in the Secret Place of the Most high. Scatter the evil and make me invisible to demons and evil spirits, strongholds, powers of the enermy and scatter my enermies as they LEAVE in Seven ways, refuged by the Archangels and Powers of the Third Heaven and the Seventh Heaven. O God in Heaven Hear us.

We give Power and Might and Praise to the Lamb of God who has been killed and has RISEN From the Dead by the Power of the Elohim and by the Power of the Most Holy Spirit of God and the Seven Lamps that are Seven Spirits of God sent to the earth. The eye of God the Father solve and hide us Under His Holy Wings as we call on the Lord for deliverance from all evil spirits and Hiding and Invisibility to the evil Under the wings of the Holy Angels so the enermy shall not interfer our plans and sow confusion as we serve humanity by Your Will Father spreading the Evangelism and Prophetic Power and 9 gifts given by God. Anoint us from the Heaven, by the fresh Oil and Your Most Holy Spirit for Your Service.

We pray Invisibility to us to hide us by the Archangels and the Blood shed on the Calvary the Most Holy Son of God Jesus Christ shall be our hiding place. Release Consuming Fire of the Word of God sent to the earth by the Holy Prophets who have anointed by the Most Holy Spirit of God and the Word of God who IS Jesus Christ sent to this earth to Holyfy and Save us on from our Sins. We declare that Jesus Chist Has Risen from the dead, and our human Spirit is Risen with Jesus Christ and we overcome by this Prayer and the most Powerful Elshadai, Adonai and by His Spirit of Holyness and the Power of the Most high the any evil work against us and we rebuke the spirit of Jezebel.

Archangel Michael come and smash all the legions of satan, temptations, actions, plans, corruption and threats and evil minds by His most Holy SWORD and Rebuke them we humbly pray Almighty God and smash them in the pieces, letting the Most Holy Spirit and His Power of the Most Powerful Elshadai hide us from them and make us INVISIBLE to the Powers Under the first heaven as we believe that everything God Holy angels who He Created for our Protection is Given to us by the whispers of the Holy Spirit – The Knowledge and The Secrets of God. We shall not speak and if we speak and work we are protected and made INVISIBLE to principalities and powers of the enermy and evil mind and every form of sin and death and corruption and by the POWER of the GOD. POWER of the GOD defend us as we shelter Under the Shield of FAITH IN YOU. Holy and Invisible God come to our Protection and Help by the Power of the Most Holy Spirit.

Holy Holy Holy is the Lord God Almighty who Is and Is to Come as the Lion of Judah. Guide us by the Power of the Gabriel, Mother of God and separate us from our sins by the Blood of Jesus Christ and let your Presence fall on our family as a Powerful Blanket of INVISIBLE PEACE of GOD. May God Rebuke the Jezebel spirit and hold us in his Power and Might and make us Prophets and Servants of God as we humbly pray to the Father..

We send this Prayer to the Throne of the Most Holy Elshadai the Everlasting God with Praise and thankfulness and the answer shall come fast. The Peace, Invisibility, Finances and Protection from evil the enermy and temptations shall come to us fast with financial and spiritual PEACE we are NOW INVISIBLE TO ANY EVIL EYE MIND AND SPIRIT That is not a Spirit of God. AMEN.

Sheema Habba te Caare

Amen

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Salvation Prayer : I Say YOU SHALL NOT FEAR OF DEATH ANYMORE. 2019 is a year of Salvation of the Prayer for the Masses and Deliverance

Salvation Prayer 2019

The Prayer of Salvation 2019-2098 | Real Salvation Prayer | Known as the Sinner’s Prayer

Intercessors are praying for 1000’s of Saved ones and for those in darkness and renewed their relationship with Jesus Christ the Nazareth.

Today Is YOUR DAY. THIS IS YOUR DAY TO SHALL NOT FEAR ANYMORE. IF YOU ARE IN A WORST PLACE I PRAY FOR YOU. JESUS SHALL DELIVER YOU: SAVE YOU: ACCEPT JESUS AND BE BLESSED BY THE BLESSING OF ABRAHAM. NOONE SHALL HURT YOU ANYMORE IF YOU PRAY

If you would like to pray the most important prayer in your life for the year 2019 – the Prayer of Salvation – known as the Sinner’s Prayer or Commitment to Jesus. You can pray or renew your relationship with Jesus and enter two prayer requests. You have never prayed this before. Or you want to renew your relationship with Father, Jesus and Holy Spirit. This Prayer of Salvation has been made in progressive revelation directly from the Lord and the Holy Bible.

Salvation by Grace, not of human merit and works.Mercy and Grace are the Love and Compassion of God towards us. In our trespasses God Love you so much that he sent His Son into this world to die on the Cross. And finish the work for what He came into the world – Save the humanity. Through Him the Grace and Truth came into the world. Jesus is Grace and Truth and the Salvation is possible only by Faith in Jesus. You are burning in the God’s Heart today to receive Jesus or renew your relationship with Him. Receive His Love, His Grace and His Holy Spirit. That is Real Salvation.

Salvation through Jesus – Believe in Jesus

If you believe in Jesus you have inheritance in heaven and you receive God’s Promise – The Eternal Life. Jesus is a door to Eternal Life without Him you perish forever. Jesus Himself said „I am the Resurrection and Life whosoever believeth in Me shall never taste death“. Please listen carefully: That is your way to Eternal Life: Faith in Jesus. Just Believe and pray.


Enter the Prayer of Salvation with your heart.
Bible declares you are saved. This is a confirmation from the written word. If you start to speak in tongues. Be sure you have been baptised with the Holy Ghost. If there are no tongues. Bible declares still that you are saved and born again. They come later for confirmation of Baptism.

Personal Prayer of Salvation


Almighty God,I come before You in the name of Jesus Christ.

Jesus I believe You are the Son of God and the only way to God. That You died on the Cross for my Sins and rose again from the dead. I confess that my life has been sinful separated from You ( Rom 3:23 ). Forgive my sins. Jesus I believe You shed Your precious Blood on the Cross for my justification. I thank You for Loving me.

Jesus I turn to You. Heal my body and soul. Heal my body, …heal my life. Come into my heart. Fill my soul. Change me. Mold me. Use me. Heal me. Deliver me. Transform my life and never let me be the same again. Cleanse me with your Holy blood and make me Whole.

Jesus – in You I have the Eternal life. And this is Eternal Life, that I may know You, the only True God and Jesus Christ whom You have sent ( John 17:1-5 ). Let me know You deeply through Holy Spirit Father. Reveal Your Will to me according to my calling.

Heavenly Father fill me with the Holy Spirit and Baptize me with the Holy Ghost and Fire. That I may have part of the First Resurrection ( Rev 20:5-6). I receive Your Spirit and the Spiritual Gifts as Holy Spirit gives me according to His Will. I desire for Spiritual Gifts.

Jesus. Give me a new mind and new heart and a new spirit. Transform my life as I surrender to Your Divine Calling. I surrender to Your will. I surrender to receive the Power!

Jesus is Alive and hears my prayer right now!

I give myself fully to You Jesus. I give myself fully to You Holy Spirit.
I receive Your Power!
I receive Your Anointing!
I receive the Anointing of the Holy Ghost right now!

The presence of God is over my life!

And now I proclaim : “God Almighty is my Father. Jesus Christ is my Saviour. Holy Spirit is my Comforter ( John 16:7-15 ). I am Born Again of the water and of the Spirit ( John 3:5-6 ). I have inherited an Eternal Life. I am now part of the Body of Christ ( Rom 12:5 ).”

In Jesus Mighty and Holy name and in the Blood of Everlasting Covenant (Hebrews 13:20-21),

I Pray and give You the Glory,
Amen


Holy Bible assurance

John 1:12 – KJV, 1978

12. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
Rejoice! Welcome to God’s family. You are a New Creation with the Holy Spirit. Born again and in the Kingdom of God. All former things have passed away.

Put your hand on your heart and start to speak and utter, if the tongues of the Holy Spirit come…Be sure of your Baptism with the Holy Ghost! There can be in the beginning only few words. If there are no tongues. Bible declares still that you are saved and born again. They come later for confirmation of Baptism.

Next Important steps after Salvation

  1. Start praying to Father and Jesus.
  2. Get baptized, if you haven’t done it yet, as commanded by Christ.
  3. Tell someone else that you received Jesus and your new faith and Love in Jesus.
  4. Spend time with God each day. It does not have to be a long period of time. Start reading the Bible from the beginning of Gospel of John
  5. Seek fellowship with other followers of Jesus. Develop a group of believing friends to answer your questions and support you.
  6. Find a local church where you can worship God and Grow.
  7. Continue in what you have received from beginning from Jesus by Grace

Intercessors are praying for 1000’s of Saved ones and for those in darkness and renewed their relationship with Jesus Christ the Nazareth.

For YOU! THERE IS NO FEAR OF DEATH ANYMORE. YOU ARE IN THE KINGDOM OF GOD: SAVED, DELIVERED AND BAPTISED BY THE HOLY GHOST

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A Prayer for Hope, Spiritual Discernment and Peace – Prayer for Peace

A Prayer for Hope, Spiritual Discernment and Peace

A Prayer for Hope, Spiritual Discernment and Peace

Heavenly Father, I thank You greatly for our Lord Jesus Christ, our light of Hope. I, Your humble servant, come before You today in need of hope. There are times when I feel so weak, helpless and uncertain. Sometimes I feel hopeless because I have sinned.

I pray to be strengthened. Fill me with confidence that in You, there is hope for a better future and a better life. Build my faith in You. May I wholly trust in Your unfailing providence and everlasting mercy and love.

1 Peter 1 : 3 – 6 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living Hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

Romans 15 : 13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Praying for Discernment

Lord Jesus, I pray to be always filled in Your love and your Holy Spirit. Give me discernment between right and wrong, between good and evil and between what is of You and the world. In you, I will prosper and rejoice. Through you, I can conquer anything that is coming from the world.

I pray for the same hope to continue in my life as i strive to love my neighbour as You have taught me to. Help me follow Your great examples and be better in life so that reflect your light to those around me. Help me, Lord Jesus, to always extend my warmth and kindness.

May I set a good example in Your ways for my young ones. Help me to be the example of what it means to be called a Christian, so that they may be in awe of You, our Lord and Saviour.

John 5 : 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, He asked him, “Do you want to get well?”

Praying for healing

Lord Jesus, I lift up all those who hope to recover from their illnesses. You know their deepest desires and the pain they go through.

May Your light of Hope never grow dim in them, as they hold steadfast to fervent prayer and ask You for healing in all they undergo, to get well in health, mind and soul.

Matthew 12 : 21 In His name the nations will put their hope.

Peace and Unity in my life

I hope for peace and unity around me, in my home, my relationships, my work and my country. May this peace begin with me so that I can contribute wholeheartedly towards a better, long-lasting relationship in my family. May it progress towards to a better society and a better world around me.

Psalm 62 : 5 Find rest, O my soul, in God alone, my hope comes from Him.

Steadfast Daily Prayer

Last but not least, Lord Jesus, I hope that I hold steadfast to prayer everyday of my life. May I rely on the word of God for the eternal nourishment of my soul.

I pray to put on the armor of the word of God, as I give Him all the glory. In Your blessed name, Lord Jesus Christ, Amen!

 

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TOP Prayer for money – Prayer For Finances – Prayer for Financial Breakthrough – Prayer for Blessing of Abraham

TOP Prayer for money - Prayer For Finances - Prayer for Financial Breakthrough - Prayer for Blessing of Abraham

Father, I come to Your Holy Throne in the name of Jesus Christ. The Prince of Peace. The Son of God. The Everlasting Father. Lord of Lords and Kings of Kings. Lion from the Tribe of Judah. I bow in Your Holy Presence and Anointing. I worship you for all the things in my life and because who You ARE. Thank you. Jesus. Blessed Be Your Holy Name. Blessed be the Father in Heaven. Blessed be the Holy Spirit – The Spirit of God.

I Now release and loose upon me the Receiveness of Blessing of Moses 5:28. I have given and Lod shall give to me wheater I am a slave or free. This is the Word of God. I have promised to live in this blessing. I release abundance, financial freedom over myself and all my friends and family. I declare into the spiritual sphere the Blood of Jesus to cover all my bank accounts and all my money that is clean. If its not clean I repent and wash myself in the Blood of Jesus. For I have received the Promice, freedom from Sin on the cross. That shall not mean I walk in the sin, but I have been forgiven for my purification of the heart by the Holy Spirit and confessing my sins to the Father. I receive the Tithe Blessing and over all the thing in the Tithe and offering. Therefore I pray Blessing and Favor over myself over this ministry, over the writer, over the Prayer Intercessor who prays for me right now. I release all Blessing by the Blood of Jesus over my Family, to my work, to my Business, to my Healt and the Spirit of Blessing of Abraham breathes over me as I pray and declare my Spiritual posessions. I take them back from the satan. And I rebuke you satan. I break and loose myself from any dark spirit, from any evil influence, from any satanic bondage. I realise I shall and must be free to walk in the Finances of God and in the Blessing of God. Blessing of Abraham breathes over me as I pray.

This ministy has prayed for all the people visiting this site and I shall receive the blessing and Financial Breakthrough by blessing my fathers and ministry. I declare to the Third heaven angels to surround me in this place I am. I take the Shield of Faith and command satan to take his dirty hands from my posession right now, that is in the Heaven and that is in the Earth. I break any yoke that keeps me from receiving the Blessing of Favor and Blessing of Finances and every sin that is on me that I do not know about. Demons flee when I pray in the Words and Tongues of the Holy Spirit. God fill me with your Spirit of Godlyness, of Power, Wisdom and Might. Knowledge and Provision and Power.

I release Financial Breakthrough over me, this ministry and the Intercessor who Prays with me.

I ask You to forgive me for all my sins and the sins of my forefathers. Let all transgressions and iniquities be cleansed by the blood of Jesus Right now, I break every spirit of poverty on my life in the name of Jesus. No devourer will destroy the fruit of my or my Intercessor labor. I break every curse of failure and lack of my life in the name of Jesus
I repent for any breaking of covenant with Your tithe and offerings, Lord Jesus Christ. I ask and receive forgiveness for disobedience and touching anything that is holy to You in the name of Jesus. I specially bless and devote myself for the Prayer for Financial breakthrough.

Let the rod of iron fall on any strange money that has passed through me in the name of Jesus. I respect the Lord will lack nothing. (Psalm 34:9) I Honor the Lord with my posessions and with the fruits of all I shall increase, I will have plenty and I overflow with blessings ( Proverbs 3:9-10 ). I seek the kingdom of God. I seek the Lord and His righteousness then all things I need and desire will be added into me. ( Matthew 6:33 )

I break myself loose from the bondage of stagnancy and lack in the mighty name of Jesus. IPPFoundation is created to be fruitful and to multiply, to fill the earth and subdue it. I have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth. I take dominionn right now over my health over my posession over my family over my incomes over my outcomes and I speak to you lack of poverty GO in the Holy Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth.

Every curse of poverty, barrenness, unproductiveness, and ineffectiveness is broken off me in the name of Jesus! I am fruitful. The blessing of the Lord overtakes me!
I decree and declare, I am blessed of God! I am sanctified by The Holy Spirit. Perfected forever in the Blood of Jesus Christ. Jesus has redeemed me and opened the door so that the blessing of Abraham can come to me by faith I receive the promise of God, lack of nothing and eternal life.

By the Holy Name of Jesus Christ and in the Everlasting Blood Covenant I Pray. And I Bless my enermies for in it there is a Promice of God. I bless my Intercessor with financial freedom. In Jesus Name.
Amen

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Breaking satans provision – WarFare Prayer – Coming out of the worldly System

Warfare Prayer - Breaking satans provision

Breaking satans provision & Coming Out of the Worldly System!

According to Haggai

Now therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways.

Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.

Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways.

Father, we break and cancel all agreements, contracts confessions concerning the beast, satan, man, and the systems provision…I know i cant get out of this by my own strength but by your strength only.  Not by might, not by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord! Lord I break the curse of the bag of holes according to Haggai 1:6…

Lord I repent for not building on your provision and repent for not building on your foundation. Put my feet on solid ground. Help me to sow into the good ground. I repent for looking after my own house and not looking after your house. Help me to die to self. Lord I repent for self deception. I repent for building a false foundation on self and not according to Christ.

Lord I ask you to bless my hands and I break every curse of poverty, lack, leech, canker worm,  caterpillar, locust,  slavery, bondage, and Ahab. I cover all these curses with the blood of Jesus! I Command all demons behind the curses to go from myself and my bloodline and never return, in the name of Jesus.

Lord, bless me to be able to give into your kingdom with a correct heart. I come out of  trusting the worlds economy, social welfare & social security in Jesus name. I renounce fear of lack, trusting in mammon, and the dependency on the worlds provision. I repent for fear and not trusting in you Father.  Lord, I repent for double-mindedness, evil heart of unbelief, false comfort, false security, the waster spirit, wormwood, sloth, sluggard, and Nomad.

The way out is the way through. press into the Lord!

We break the curse of vagabond and the curse of Cain!

Lord we break all pacts, treaties and covenants with the Gibeonites and Hivites like Joshua did… we refuse to be tricked any longer.

THANK YOU JESUS!!!! All glory goes to you Father God! We love you and proclaim not my will but yours Father!

 

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Prayers – The Lord’s Prayer – Jesus Teaching on Prayer – The High Priestly Prayer – Jesus Prays for All Believers

Prayers-The-Lord’s-Prayer-Jesus-Teaching-on-Prayer-The-High-Priestly-Prayer-Jesus-Prays-for-All-Believers

The Lord’s Prayer

This, then, is how you should pray:“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”

—Matthew 6:9-13

When you pray, say: “Father hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation.”
—Luke 11:2-4

Jesus Teaching on Prayer

“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”

—Matthew 6:5-8

Prayer of Praise
At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.”

—Matthew 11:25-26

Prayers During the Raising of Lazarus

So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing
here, that they may believe that you sent me.”

—John 11:41-42

Prayer in Gethsemane

“Abba, Father,” Jesus said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”

—Mark 14:36

Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.”

—Matthew 26:39, 42

The High Priestly Prayer

After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.”

—John 17:1-5

Jesus Prays for His Disciples

“I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you.”

—John 17:6-11

“Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.”

—John 17:11-12

“I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them. I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.”

—John 17:13-19

Jesus Prays for All Believers

“My prayer is not for them alone. I prayalso for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.”

—John 17:20-21

“I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”

—John 17:22-23

“Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.”

—John 17:24

“Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and
will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

—John 17:25-26

Prayers from the Cross
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they aredoing.”

—Luke 23:34

About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?”(which means “My God, my God, why have you for saken me?”).

—Matthew 27:46

Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.
—Luke 23:46

The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

—James 5:16

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Mystery of God – Seven Truths – Jesus Christ About the Secret The Kingdom of God – Mystery of Jesus Christ

Mystery of God - Seven Truths - Jesus Christ About the Secret The Kingdom of God - Mystery of Jesus Christ

Seven Truths From Jesus Christ About the Real Secret The Kingdom of God

Christ said the real secret of the universe, on which all of the past, present and future depends, is the Kingdom of God. Explaining His famous parable of the sower, He called descriptions of the way to enter the Kingdom of God and its principles “mysteries”—secrets or hidden truths most people don’t understand (Matthew 13:11).

Christ said the real secret of the universe, on which all of the past, present and future depends, is the Kingdom of God. Explaining His famous parable of the sower, He called descriptions of the way to enter the Kingdom of God and its principles “mysteries”—secrets or hidden truths most people don’t understand (Matthew 13:11).

What are these great truths, these mysteries so few understand?

1. Human beings can be converted and raised up “at the last day” (John 6:40) to enter the Kingdom of God and eternal life. What Jesus meant was that we will live as children in a divine family with the Father and Son forever. Surprisingly, this will begin right here on earth. To learn more, request or download our free booklet The Gospel of the Kingdom.

2. Christ treated all of Scripture, which at that time consisted of what we call the Old Testament, as the Word of God—revealing the real secret. He said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). In other words, the secrets of God are revealed in the Word of God, the Bible, and nowhere else. To learn more, request or download our free booklet Is the Bible True?

3. The law of God holds the key to the Kingdom of God. The law of God, summarized in the Ten Commandments, is the basic law of the universe. The law of God will bring true success. To learn more, request or download our free booklet The Ten Commandments.

4. The goal in life is to develop the character of God by conforming to Christ—not your human heart. Following your own inclinations apart from God will lead to death (Jeremiah 10:23; 17:9; Romans 8:7; Proverbs 16:25). Your greatest goal is not the selfish ambition to attract all the physical wealth and everything else you desire. To learn more, request or download our free booklet What Is Your Destiny?

5. Satan counterfeits and misrepresents spiritual truths and deceives mankind. In the parable of the sower, Jesus said, “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart” (Matthew 13:19). Anyone who believes in “ the law of attraction ” will not be able to understand and receive the truth about the Kingdom of God. The apostle Paul said the devil’s teaching and spiritual control of the world would blind most from understanding the Kingdom of God and how man enters it through following Christ’s teachings (2 Corinthians 4:4). To learn more, request or download our free booklet Is There Really a Devil?

6. God has given us the keys of overcoming—the spiritual process of conversion. It starts by giving up the kind of lifestyle of self-absorption laid out in the teaching of The Secret and The Law of Attraction. To enter the Kingdom of God, you have to give up the natural priorities of the self, sacrificing the self to be transformed into a new being with eternal life. Jesus Christ promises good things will come to each of us abundantly if we live a life of giving to others, not getting for ourselves. To learn more, request or download our free booklet Transforming Your Life: The Process of Conversion.

7. God will give us every good thing—but only in the coming Kingdom of God can we receive the glorious reward that will be greater than anything we can imagine in this life today. Jesus Christ’s teaching is summed up in this: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). God wants you to inherit the Kingdom of God—the greatest secret in the universe that will transform you and all who choose to think, believe and act on it.

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Billy Graham’s Last Crusade: America Actually 58th Country To Host ‘My Hope’ 2013 Christianity – In Memory of Billy Graham

Billy Grahams Last Crusade America Actually 58th Country To Host My Hope. American Evangelist. Evangelist of Our Time

Billy Graham’s Last Crusade: America Actually 58th Country To Host ‘My Hope’

Highlights from new crusade format that focuses on filling living rooms worldwide instead of stadiums.

Billy Graham will celebrate his 95th birthday this Thursday in appropriate fashion, launching his largest-ever and likely last crusade.

More than 28,000 churches have pledged their involvement in “My Hope America with Billy Graham,” an event which pivots from the evangelist’s famous stadium-filling events to living rooms nationwide.

Based on Matthew 9:9-10, “My Hope” encourages Christians to invite non-Christian friends into their homes to watch a TV program featuring Graham. The video will feature clips of past sermons as well as a new message Graham has prepared—possibly his last.

However, this is not the first time the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) has held the “My Hope” campaign. In fact, America is one of the last places to host the program.

The televised campaign—instituted through churches—has reached 57 countries since 2002, with more than 298,000 churches participating and more than 4.4 million Christians.

This editorial originally appeared in the November 18, 1988 issue of Christianity Today.

History will remember Billy Graham as the world’s greatest missionary-evangelist. No other person has preached the gospel face-to-face to so many—over 100 million. No other person has led so many to make explicit spiritual decisions, usually to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior—over two million. And no other person has traveled to so many countries to preach the gospel—more than 65.

How could it ever have happened? How could a shy country boy from the foothills of North Carolina sway millions and stand before kings?

Some have suggested that, at root, Billy Graham is a supreme opportunist. At a crucial point in Los Angeles in his early ministry, media tycoon William Randolph Hearst ordered his chain of newspapers to “Puff Graham.” The media took over and created Billy Graham, his evangelistic career, and its worldwide success—or so the story goes.

However, Billy Graham’s own answer to this puzzle is “the hand of God.” The Spirit of God fell on this unpromising material and called him to be an evangelist. And who can deny the evangelist is right? From the very first, Graham’s unswerving purpose has been to carry the message of the gospel to all the world-to everyone everywhere by whatever means—so that some might be saved from the guilt and burden of their sins and others aroused and strengthened to live obedient and useful lives for the glory of God. From that goal, he has never deviated.

In his early mission, no doubt the heavy hand of William Randolph Hearst was laid upon him and gave him welcome advertising in his attempts to reach a wider public hearing.

Is Billy Graham an Evangelical?

Grant Wacker’s comprehensive portrait displays the tension between ‘America’s pastor’ and ‘evangelicalism’s architect.’

Writing about Grant Wacker’s America’s Pastor: Billy Graham and the Shaping of a Nation as a managing editor of Christianity Today is at once a daunting and complicated task. Graham founded this magazine. His portrait greets me every time I come in the building. I have on my wall a 1956 copy of his “Christianity Today Statement of Policy and Purpose.” On my desktop is a special 128-page issue on Graham’s life and legacy I put together years ago, ready to publish “at some point in the future,” as we euphemistically told our writers (several of whom Graham has now outlived).

So if Wacker calls himself “a partisan of the same evangelical tradition Graham represented,” I don’t quite know what that makes me—a fanatic of that tradition?

Wacker, who is about to retire from his position at Duke Divinity School as one of the preeminent historians of American religion, begins his book by warning that it’s “not a conventional biography. Numerous studies of Graham’s life or aspects of it already grace the shelves of public libraries, and many of them are excellent. My aim is different. I try to step back and ask another question: Why does Graham matter?”

Likewise, I won’t offer a conventional review, except to say that it is required reading for anyone seriously interested in evangelicalism, 20th-century American history, or the sociology of religion. If you want Graham’s life story, you may be better off with William Martin’s 1991 authorized (but honest) biography, Prophet with Honor. That volume is twice as long, and an updated version is due out “at some point in the future.”

Has Billy Graham Suddenly Turned Political?

The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) launched a major ad campaign last week encouraging Americans to “vote for biblical values” this November.

The ads convey one of two messages from evangelist Billy Graham:

The legacy we leave behind for our children, grandchildren and this great nation is crucial. As I approach my 94th birthday, I realize this election could be my last. I believe it is vitally important that we cast our ballots for candidates who base their decisions on biblical principles and support the nation of Israel. I urge you to vote for those who protect the sanctity of life and support the biblical definition of marriage between a man and a woman. Vote for biblical values this November 6, and pray with me that America will remain one nation under God.

Or:

On November 6, the day before my 94th birthday, our nation will hold one of the most critical elections in my lifetime. We are at a crossroads and there are profound moral issues at stake. I strongly urge you to vote for candidates who support the biblical definition of marriage between a man and woman, protect the sanctity of life, and defend our religious freedoms. The Bible speaks clearly on these crucial issues. Please join me in praying for America, that we will turn our hearts back toward God.

The ad campaign is the latest in a series of public statements this year that have prompted questions on whether they truly reflect Billy Graham’s concerns or whether they were initiated by his son Franklin Graham, who has been more outspoken than his father on political matters in recent years.

Earlier in the week, the BGEA removed an articlelisting Mormonism as a “cult” from its website.

More than 50 years ago—it was in 1953—Billy Graham awoke at 2 A.M. with dreams for a magazine. “Trying not to disturb Ruth,” he wrote in his autobiography, “I slipped out of bed and into my study upstairs to write. A couple of hours later, the concept for a new magazine was complete. I thought its name should be Christianity Today.” Billy used that document to recruit board members and staff and to raise the necessary resources. The first issue was distributed in October 1956 to more than 200,000 pastors and church leaders.

Twenty-five years ago, we published CT’s 25th anniversary issue, with Billy on the cover. Our founder responded to questions with lively, incisive insights.

This summer, in CT’s 50th anniversary year, we were to meet with Billy again. We anticipated less lively repartee on evangelical currents and world events this time. On the plane to North Carolina, Christianity Today International (CTI) president Paul Robbins and I read Newsweek‘s August 14 cover story, “Billy Graham in Twilight.” Yet he had preached earlier in the summer in Baltimore and, before that, in his “final” New York City crusade.

Our car climbed up a steep, narrow road over the multiple folds of rugged Blue Ridge woodlands to his mountaintop home. As we pulled up, three dogs gazed lazily at us. Inside the modest log home, we soon saw Billy’s tall, lanky form moving slowly toward us down a long hall. His warm welcome matched his sunny smile.

The day before, Billy told us, he’d felt a great deal of pain, but today he was much better. “Everything is nostalgia now,” he said, explaining that he is largely isolated.

Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
-Colossians 4:6 (NIV)

For as long as I can remember, Billy Graham has been part of our family. Not in a literal sense, of course, since my father grew up in Minnesota while Billy Graham was raised in the South. Yet, God chose to weave their lives together—calling both to the work of evangelism, giving both the privilege of introducing tens of thousands of men and women to Jesus Christ, and planting in both an enduring friendship. Drawn together during the 1940s through the ministry of Youth for Christ, Billy Graham, Merv Rosell, and a small cadre of gifted young evangelists—sharing not only sermons and songleaders but also long seasons of prayer and a growing sense of awe at what God was doing through them—became the surprising leaders of what the editor of United Evangelical Action would by 1952 be calling “one of the greatest outpourings of the Spirit in the nation’s history.”

Those powerful midcentury revivals, marked by the large evangelistic crusades that swept through scores of American cities during the late 1940s and early 1950s, not only swelled the ranks of a resurgent evangelical movement, but they also helped to make Billy Graham the best known and most respected leader of our century. With Billy Graham’s new prominence, however, came increasing criticism. Old friends as well as new enemies began to voice concerns about everything from his theology to his style of preaching.

AMERICA may be a nation of believers, but when it comes to this country’s identity as a “Christian nation,” our beliefs are all over the map.

Just a few weeks ago, Public Policy Polling reported that 57 percent of Republicans favored officially making the United States a Christian nation. But in 2007, a survey by the First Amendment Center showed that 55 percent of Americans believed it already was one.

The confusion is understandable. For all our talk about separation of church and state, religious language has been written into our political culture in countless ways. It is inscribed in our pledge of patriotism, marked on our money, carved into the walls of our courts and our Capitol. Perhaps because it is everywhere, we assume it has been from the beginning.

But the founding fathers didn’t create the ceremonies and slogans that come to mind when we consider whether this is a Christian nation. Our grandfathers did.

Back in the 1930s, business leaders found themselves on the defensive. Their public prestige had plummeted with the Great Crash; their private businesses were under attack by Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal from above and labor from below. To regain the upper hand, corporate leaders fought back on all fronts. They waged a figurative war in statehouses and, occasionally, a literal one in the streets; their campaigns extended from courts of law to the court of public opinion. But nothing worked particularly well until they began an inspired public relations offensive that cast capitalism as the handmaiden of Christianity.

The two had been described as soul mates before, but in this campaign they were wedded in pointed opposition to the “creeping socialism” of the New Deal. The federal government had never really factored into Americans’ thinking about the relationship between faith and free enterprise, mostly because it had never loomed that large over business interests. But now it cast a long and ominous shadow.

Accordingly, throughout the 1930s and ’40s, corporate leaders marketed a new ideology that combined elements of Christianity with an anti-federal libertarianism. Powerful business lobbies like the United States Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers led the way, promoting this ideology’s appeal in conferences and P.R. campaigns. Generous funding came from prominent businessmen, from household names like Harvey Firestone, Conrad Hilton, E. F. Hutton, Fred Maytag and Henry R. Luce to lesser-known leaders at U.S. Steel, General Motors and DuPont.

In a shrewd decision, these executives made clergymen their spokesmen. As Sun Oil’s J. Howard Pew noted, polls proved that ministers could mold public opinion more than any other profession. And so these businessmen worked to recruit clergy through private meetings and public appeals. Many answered the call, but three deserve special attention.

The Rev. James W. Fifield — known as “the 13th Apostle of Big Business” and “Saint Paul of the Prosperous” — emerged as an early evangelist for the cause. Preaching to pews of millionaires at the elite First Congregational Church in Los Angeles, Mr. Fifield said reading the Bible was “like eating fish — we take the bones out to enjoy the meat. All parts are not of equal value.” He dismissed New Testament warnings about the corrupting nature of wealth. Instead, he paired Christianity and capitalism against the New Deal’s “pagan statism.”

Through his national organization, Spiritual Mobilization, founded in 1935, Mr. Fifield promoted “freedom under God.” By the late 1940s, his group was spreading the gospel of faith and free enterprise in a mass-circulated monthly magazine and a weekly radio program that eventually aired on more than 800 stations nationwide. It even encouraged ministers to preach sermons on its themes in competitions for cash prizes. Liberals howled at the group’s conflation of God and greed; in 1948, the radical journalist Carey McWilliams denounced it in a withering exposé. But Mr. Fifield exploited such criticism to raise more funds and redouble his efforts.

Meanwhile, the Rev. Abraham Vereide advanced the Christian libertarian cause with a national network of prayer groups. After ministering to industrialists facing huge labor strikes in Seattle and San Francisco in the mid-1930s, Mr. Vereide began building prayer breakfast groups in cities across America to bring business and political elites together in common cause. “The big men and the real leaders in New York and Chicago,” he wrote his wife, “look up to me in an embarrassing way.” In Manhattan alone, James Cash Penney, I.B.M.’s Thomas Watson, Norman Vincent Peale and Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia all sought audiences with him.

In 1942, Mr. Vereide’s influence spread to Washington. He persuaded the House and Senate to start weekly prayer meetings “in order that we might be a God-directed and God-controlled nation.” Mr. Vereide opened headquarters in Washington — “God’s Embassy,” he called it — and became a powerful force in its previously secular institutions. Among other activities, he held “dedication ceremonies” for several justices of the Supreme Court. “No country or civilization can last,” Justice Tom C. Clark announced at his 1949 consecration, “unless it is founded on Christian values.”

The most important clergyman for Christian libertarianism, though, was the Rev. Billy Graham. In his initial ministry, in the early 1950s, Mr. Graham supported corporate interests so zealously that a London paper called him “the Big Business evangelist.” The Garden of Eden, he informed revival attendees, was a paradise with “no union dues, no labor leaders, no snakes, no disease.” In the same spirit, he denounced all “government restrictions” in economic affairs, which he invariably attacked as “socialism.”

In 1952, Mr. Graham went to Washington and made Congress his congregation. He recruited representatives to serve as ushers at packed revival meetings and staged the first formal religious service held on the Capitol steps. That year, at his urging, Congress established an annual National Day of Prayer. “If I would run for president of the United States today on a platform of calling people back to God, back to Christ, back to the Bible,” he predicted, “I’d be elected.”

Dwight D. Eisenhower fulfilled that prediction. With Mr. Graham offering Scripture for Ike’s speeches, the Republican nominee campaigned in what he called a “great crusade for freedom.” His military record made the general a formidable candidate, but on the trail he emphasized spiritual issues over worldly concerns. As the journalist John Temple Graves observed: “America isn’t just a land of the free in Eisenhower’s conception. It is a land of freedom under God.” Elected in a landslide, Eisenhower told Mr. Graham that he had a mandate for a “spiritual renewal.”

Although Eisenhower relied on Christian libertarian groups in the campaign, he parted ways with their agenda once elected. The movement’s corporate sponsors had seen religious rhetoric as a way to dismantle the New Deal state. But the newly elected president thought that a fool’s errand. “Should any political party attempt to abolish Social Security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs,” he noted privately, “you would not hear of that party again in our political history.” Unlike those who held public spirituality as a means to an end, Eisenhower embraced it as an end unto itself.

Uncoupling the language of “freedom under God” from its Christian libertarian roots, Eisenhower erected a bigger revival tent, welcoming Jews and Catholics alongside Protestants, and Democrats as well as Republicans. Rallying the country, he advanced a revolutionary array of new religious ceremonies and slogans.

The first week of February 1953 set the dizzying pace: On Sunday morning, he was baptized; that night, he broadcast an Oval Office address for the American Legion’s “Back to God” campaign; on Thursday, he appeared with Mr. Vereide at the inaugural National Prayer Breakfast; on Friday, he instituted the first opening prayers at a cabinet meeting.

The rest of Washington consecrated itself, too. The Pentagon, State Department and other executive agencies quickly instituted prayer services of their own. In 1954, Congress added “under God” to the previously secular Pledge of Allegiance. It placed a similar slogan, “In God We Trust,” on postage that year and voted the following year to add it to paper money; in 1956, it became the nation’s official motto.

During these years, Americans were told, time and time again, not just that the country should be a Christian nation, but that it always had been one. They soon came to think of the United States as “one nation under God.” They’ve believed it ever since.

In Memory and Honor of Billy Graham. Resource ChristianityToday. Copyright.

This text is for the Memory of Billy Graham The Greatest Evangelist. Photo and text Copyrighted on ChristianityToday The Great Evangelistical Site

We made this article in memory of Biily Graham. Copyright New York Times

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Jesus Christ Videos – Parables of Jesus – Ye Have Done it Unto Me – Matthew 25:31-46 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Matthew 25:31-46Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Judgment

31 “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory and majesty and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him [for judgment]; and He will separate them from one another, as a shepherd separates his sheep from the goats; 33 and He will put the sheep on His right [the place of honor], and the goats on His left [the place of rejection].

34 “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father [you favored of God, appointed to eternal salvation], inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 I was naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me [with help and ministering care]; I was in prison, and you came to Me [ignoring personal danger].’ 37 Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38 And when did we see You as a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 The King will answer and say to them, ‘I assure you and most solemnly say to you, to the extent that you did it for one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it for Me.’

41 “Then He will say to those on His left, ‘Leave Me, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels (demons); 42 for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43 I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me [with help and ministering care].’ 44 Then they also [in their turn] will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or as a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ 45 Then He will reply to them, ‘I assure you and most solemnly say to you, to the extent that you did not do it for one of the least of these [my followers], you did not do it for Me.’ 46 Then these [unbelieving people] will go away into eternal (unending) punishment, but those who are righteous and in right standing with God [will go, by His remarkable grace] into eternal (unending) life.”

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Jesus Christ Videos – Parables of Jesus – Parable of the Sower – Matthew 13 Amplified Bible (AMP) Jesus Teaching in Parables. Bible Proven Movie

Jesus Christ Videos - Parables of Jesus - Parable of the Sower

Matthew 13Amplified Bible (AMP)

Jesus Teaches in Parables

13 That same day Jesus went out of the house and was sitting beside the sea [of Galilee]. But such large crowds gathered around Him that He got into a boat and sat there [positioning Himself as a teacher], while the whole crowd stood on the shore.

He told them many things in “Listen carefully: a sower went out to sow [seed in his field]; and as he sowed, some seed fell beside the road [between the fields], and the birds came and ate it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil; and at once they sprang up because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun rose, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Other seed fell among thorns, and thorns came up and choked them out. Other seed fell on good soil and yielded grain, some a hundred times as much [as was sown], some sixty [times as much], and some thirty. He who has ears [to hear], let him hear and heed My words.”

An Explanation

10 Then the disciples came to Him and asked, “Why do You speak to the crowds in parables?” 11 Jesus replied to them, “To you it has been granted to know the 12 For whoever has [spiritual wisdom because he is receptive to God’s word], to him more will be given, and he will be richly and abundantly supplied; but whoever does not have [spiritual wisdom because he has devalued God’s word], even what he has will be taken away from him. 13 This is the reason I speak to the crowds in parables: because while [having the power of] seeing they do not see, and while [having the power of] hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand and grasp [spiritual things]. 14 In them the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says,

You will hear and keep on hearing, but never understand;
And you will look and keep on looking, but never comprehend;
15 
For this nation’s heart has grown hard,
And with their ears they hardly hear,
And they have [tightly] closed their eyes,
Otherwise they would see with their eyes,
And hear with their ears,
And understand with their heart, and turn [to Me]
And I would heal them [spiritually].’

16 But blessed [spiritually aware, and favored by God] are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear. 17 I assure you and most solemnly say to you, many prophets and righteous men [who were honorable and in right standing with God] longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

The Sower Explained

18 “Listen then to the [meaning of the] parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom [regarding salvation] and does not understand and grasp it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road. 20 The one on whom seed was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and at once welcomes it with joy; 21 yet he has no [substantial] root in himself, but is only temporary, and when pressure or persecution comes because of the word, immediately he stumbles and falls away [abandoning the One who is the source of salvation]. 22 And the one on whom seed was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the worries and distractions of the world and the deceitfulness [the superficial pleasures and delight] of riches choke the word, and it yields no fruit. 23 And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands and grasps it; he indeed bears fruit and yields, some a hundred times [as much as was sown], some sixty [times as much], and some thirty.”

Weeds among Wheat

24 Jesus gave them another parable [to consider], saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed among the wheat, and went away. 26 So when the plants sprouted and formed grain, the weeds appeared also. 27 The servants of the owner came to him and said, ‘Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? Then how does it have weeds in it?’ 28 He replied to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The servants asked him, ‘Then do you want us to go and pull them out?’ 29 But he said, ‘No; because as you pull out the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let them grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, “First gather the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”

The Mustard Seed

31 He gave them another parable [to consider], saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; 32 and of all the seeds [planted in the region] it is the smallest, but when it has grown it is the largest of the garden herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air find shelter in its branches.”

The Leaven

33 He told them another parable, “The kingdom of heaven is like 34 All these things Jesus said to the crowds in parables, and He said nothing to them without [using] a parable. 35 This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet:

I will open My mouth in parables;
I will utter things [unknown and unattainable] that have been hidden [from mankind] since the foundation of the world.”

The Weeds Explained

36 Then He left the crowds and went into the house. And His disciples came to Him saying, “Explain [clearly] to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” 37 He answered, “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man, 38 and the field is the world; and [as for] the good seed, these are the sons of the kingdom; and the weeds are the sons of the evil one; 39 and the enemy who sowed them is the devil, and the harvest is the end of the age; and the reapers are angels. 40 So just as the weeds are gathered up and burned in the fire, so will it be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend [those things by which people are led into sin], and all who practice evil [leading others into sin], 42 and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping [over sorrow and pain] and grinding of teeth [over distress and anger]. 43 Then the righteous [those who seek the will of God] will shine forth [radiating the new life] like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears [to hear], let him hear and heed My words.

Hidden Treasure

44 “The kingdom of heaven is like a [very precious] treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid again; then in his joy he goes and sells all he has and buys that field [securing the treasure for himself].

A Costly Pearl

45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, 46 and upon finding a single pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.

A Dragnet

47 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet which was lowered into the sea, and gathered fish of every kind, 48 and when it was full, they dragged it up on the beach; and they sat down and sorted out the good fish into baskets, but the worthless ones they threw away. 49 So it will be at the end of the age; the angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous 50 and throw the wicked into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping [over sorrow and pain] and grinding of teeth [over distress and anger].

51 “Have you understood all these things [in the lessons of the parables]?” They said to Jesus, “Yes.” 52 He said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has become a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household, who brings out of his Jesus Revisits Nazareth

53 When Jesus had finished these parables, He left there. 54 And after coming to [Nazareth] His hometown, He began teaching them in their synagogue, and they were astonished, and said, “Where did this Man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers [what is the source of His authority]? 55 Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not His mother called Mary? And are not His brothers, James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? 56 And His sisters, are they not [living here] among us? Where then did this Man get all this [wisdom and power]?” 57 And they took offense at Him [refusing to believe in Him]. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household.” 58 And He did not do many miracles there [in Nazareth] because of their unbelief.

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Jesus Christ Videos – Parables of Jesus The Parable of the Good Samaritan – Luke 10:25-37 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Parables of Jesus The Parable of the Good Samaritan

Luke 10:25-37Amplified Bible (AMP)

25 And a certain lawyer [an expert in Mosaic Law] stood up to test Him, saying, “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 Jesus said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27 And he replied, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 Jesus said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this habitually and you will live.” 29 But he, wishing to justify and vindicate himself, asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

Parable of the Good Samaritan

30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he encountered robbers, who stripped him of his clothes [and belongings], beat him, and went their way [unconcerned], leaving him half dead. 31 Now by coincidence a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 Likewise a Levite also came down to the place and saw him, and passed by on the other side [of the road]. 33 But a Samaritan (foreigner), who was traveling, came upon him; and when he saw him, he was deeply moved with compassion [for him], 34 and went to him and bandaged up his wounds, pouring oil and wine on them [to sooth and disinfect the injuries]; and he put him on his own pack-animal, and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 On the next day he took out two denarii (two days’ wages) and gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I return.’ 36 Which of these three do you think proved himself a neighbor to the man who encountered the robbers?” 37 He answered, “The one who showed compassion and mercy to him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and constantly do the same.”

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Jesus Christ Videos – Peter and John Continue Preaching the Gospel – Acts 15 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Peter and John Continue Preaching the Gospel

Acts 15Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Council at Jerusalem

15 Some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brothers, “Unless you are circumcised in accordance with the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.” Paul and Barnabas disagreed greatly and debated with them, so it was determined that Paul and Barnabas and some of the others from their group would go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and the elders [and confer with them] concerning this issue. So, after being supplied and sent on their way by the church, they went through both Phoenicia and Samaria telling in detail the conversion of the Gentiles, and they brought great joy to all the When they arrived in Jerusalem, they were received warmly by the church and the apostles and the elders, and they reported to them all the things that God had accomplished through them. But some from the sect of the Pharisees who had believed [in Jesus as the Messiah] stood up and said, “It is necessary to circumcise the Gentile converts and to direct them to observe the Law of Moses.”

The apostles and the elders came together to consider this matter. After a long debate, Peter got up and said to them, “Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles would hear the message of the gospel and believe. And God, who knows and understands the heart, testified to them, giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us; and He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith [in Jesus]. 10 Now then, why are you testing God by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we have been able to endure? 11 But we believe that we are saved through the [precious, undeserved] grace of the Lord Jesus [which makes us free of the guilt of sin and grants us eternal life], in just the same way as they are.”

12 All the people remained silent, and they listened [attentively] to Barnabas and Paul as they described all the signs and wonders (attesting miracles) that God had done through them among the Gentiles.

James’ Judgment

13 When they had finished speaking, 14 15 The words of the Prophets agree with this, just as it is written [in Scripture],

16 
After these things I will return,
And I will rebuild the tent of David which has fallen;
I will rebuild its ruins,
And I will restore it,
17 
So that the rest of mankind may seek the Lord,
And all the Gentiles upon whom My name has been invoked,’
18 
Says the Lord,
Who has been making these things known from long ago.

19 Therefore it is my judgment that we do not trouble and make it difficult for those who are turning to God among the Gentiles [by putting obstacles in their way], 20 but that we write to them that they are to abstain from 21 For from ancient generations [the writing of] Moses has been preached in every city, since 22 Then the apostles and the elders, together with the whole church, decided to select some of their men to go to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas—Judas, who was called Barsabbas, and Silas [also called Silvanus, both], leading men among the brothers. 23 With them they sent the following letter: “The apostles and the brothers who are the elders, to the brothers and sisters who are from the Gentiles in Antioch, Syria, and Cilicia, Greetings.

24 Since we have heard that some of our men have troubled you with their teachings, causing distress and confusion—men to whom we gave no such orders or instructions—
25 it has been decided by us, having met together, to select men and send them to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,
26 men who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
27 So we have sent Judas and Silas, who will report by word of mouth the same things [that we decided in our meeting].
28 For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to place on you any greater burden than these essentials:
29 that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols, and from [consuming] blood, and from [eating the meat of] things that have been strangled, and from sexual impurity. If you keep yourselves from these things, you will do well. Farewell.”

30 So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch; and after assembling the congregation, they delivered the letter. 31 And when they had read it, the people rejoiced greatly at the encouragement and comfort [it brought them]. 32 Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets (divinely inspired spokesmen), encouraged and strengthened the 33 After spending some time there, they were sent back by the brothers with [the greeting of] peace to those who had sent them. 34 35 But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, and with many others also continued teaching and proclaiming the good news, the word of the Lord [concerning eternal salvation through faith in Christ].

Paul’s Second Missionary Journey

36 After some time Paul said to Barnabas, “Let us go back and visit the brothers and sisters (believers) in every city where we preached the message of the Lord, and see how they are doing.” 37 Now Barnabas wanted to take [his cousin] John, who was called Mark, along with them. 38 But Paul kept insisting that they should not take along with them the one who had quit and deserted them in Pamphylia and had not gone on with them to the work. 39 And it became such a sharp disagreement that they separated from one another, and Barnabas took [John] Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus. 40 But Paul chose Silas [who was again in Antioch] and set out [on his second journey], commended by the brothers to the grace and favor of the Lord. 41 And he traveled through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.

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The Last Supper – Luke 22 Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Last Supper Communion Table

Luke 22Amplified Bible (AMP)

Preparing the Passover

22 Now the Festival of Unleavened Bread, which is called the Passover, was approaching. The chief priests and the scribes were looking for a way to put Him to death; for they were afraid of the people [who listened devotedly to His teaching, and who respected His spiritual wisdom].

Then Satan entered Judas, the one called Iscariot, who was one of the twelve [disciples]. And he went away and discussed with the chief priests and officers how he might betray Him and hand Him over to them. They were delighted and agreed with him to give him money. So he consented, and began looking for a good opportunity to betray Jesus to them [at a time when He was] separated from the crowd [because the people might riot or stop them from seizing Him].

Then came the preparation day of a]Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. So Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and prepare the Passover meal for us, so that we may eat it.” They asked Him, “Where do You want us to prepare it?” 10 He replied, “When you have entered the city, a b]man carrying an earthen jar of water will meet you; follow him into the house that he enters. 11 And say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher asks, “Where is the guest room in which I may eat the Passover with My disciples?”’ 12 Then he will show you a large upstairs room, furnished [with carpets and dining couches]; prepare the meal there.” 13 They left and found it just as He had told them; and they prepared the Passover.

The Lord’s Supper

14 When the hour [for the meal] had come, Jesus reclined at the table, and the apostles with Him. 15 He said to them, “I have earnestly wanted to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; 16 for I say to you, I will not eat it again until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” 17 And when He had taken a cup and c]given thanks, He said, “Take this and share it among yourselves; 18 for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine from now on until the kingdom of God comes.” 19 And when He had taken bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 20 And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup, which is poured out for you, is the new covenant [ratified] in My blood. 21 But listen, the hand of the one betraying Me is with Mine on the table. 22 For indeed, the Son of Man is going as it has been determined; but woe (judgment is coming) to that man by whom He is betrayed and handed over!” 23 And they began to discuss among themselves which one of them it might be who was going to do this.

Who Is Greatest?

24 Now a dispute also arose among them as to which of them was regarded to be the greatest. 25 Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles have absolute power and lord it over them; and those in authority over them are called ‘Benefactors.’ 26 But it is not to be this way with you; on the contrary, the one who is the greatest among you must become like the youngest [and least privileged], and the [one who is the] leader, like the servant. 27 For who is the greater, the one who reclines at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at the table? But I am among you as the one who serves.

28 “You are those who have remained and have stood by Me in My trials; 29 and just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you [the privilege] 30 that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

31 “Simon, Simon (Peter), listen! Satan has demanded permission to sift [all of] you like grain; 32 but I have prayed [especially] for you [Peter], that your faith [and confidence in Me] may not fail; and you, once you have turned back again [to Me], strengthen and support your brothers [in the faith].” 33 And Peter said to Him, “Lord, I am ready to go with You both to prison and to death!” 34 Jesus said, “I say to you, Peter, before the rooster crows today, you will [utterly] deny three times that you know Me.”

35 And He said to them, “When I sent you out without a money belt and [provision] bag and [extra] sandals, did you lack anything?” They answered, “Nothing.” 36 Then He said to them, “But now, he who has a money belt is to take it along, and also his [provision] bag, and he who has no sword is to sell his coat and buy one. 37 For I tell you that this [Scripture] which is written must be completed and fulfilled in Me: ‘And He was counted with the criminals’; for that which refers to Me has its fulfillment [and is settled].” 38 They said, “Lord, look, here are two swords.” And He said to them, “It is enough.”

 

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Jesus Christ Videos – Jesus Christ Appears on the Road to Emmaus – Luke 24:13-35 Amplified Bible (AMP) – The Road to Emmaus

Jesus Christ Appears on the Road to Emmaus

Luke 24:13-35Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Road to Emmaus

13 And then, that very day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, which was about a]seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 And they were talking with each other about all these things which had taken place. 15 While they were talking and discussing it, Jesus Himself came up and began walking with them. 16 But their eyes were [miraculously] prevented from recognizing Him. 17 Then Jesus asked them, “What are you discussing with one another as you walk along?” And they stood still, looking brokenhearted. 18 One of them, named Cleopas, answered Him, “Are you the only stranger visiting Jerusalem who is unaware of the things which have happened here in these [Not a valid template] days?” 19 He asked, “What things?” And they replied, “The things about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet powerful in deed and word in the sight of God and all the people, 20 and how the chief priests and our rulers handed Him over to be sentenced to death, and crucified Him. 21 But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel and set our nation free. Indeed, besides all this, it is the third day since these things happened. 22 And also some of the women among us shocked us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, 23 and they did not find His body. Then they came back, saying that they had even seen a vision of angels who said that He was alive! 24 Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just exactly as the women had said, but they did not see Him.” 25 Then Jesus said to them, “O foolish men, and slow of heart to trust and believe in everything that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and [only then to] enter His glory?” 27 Then beginning with Moses and [throughout] all the [writings of the] prophets, He explained and interpreted for them the things referring to Himself [found] in all the Scriptures.

28 Then they approached the village where they were going, and He acted as if He were going farther. 29 But they urged Him [not to go on], saying, “Stay with us, because it is almost evening, and the day has just about ended.” So He went inside to stay with them. 30 And it happened that as He reclined at the table with them, He took the bread and blessed it, and breaking it, He began giving it to them. 31 Then their eyes were [suddenly] opened [by God] and they [clearly] recognized Him; and He vanished from their sight. 32 They said to one another, “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was talking with us on the road and opening the Scriptures to us?” 33 They got up that very hour and went back to Jerusalem, and found the eleven [apostles] gathered together and those who were with them, 34 saying, “The Lord has really risen and has appeared to Simon [Peter]!” 35 They began describing in detail what had happened on the road, and how Jesus was recognized by them when He broke the bread.

Footnotes:

  1. Luke 24:13 Lit sixty stadia, a Roman measurement.
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Evolution and the Atonement of Jesus Christ

by Tim Chaffey

Recently, the BioLogos website hosted two articles from guest blogger Dr. Joseph Bankard as part of a series on “how to understand the atoning work of Christ in light of evolutionary science.” This series features writers who hold different opinions on the relationship between evolution and the atonement. Critiques of some of these posts are forthcoming. This article will summarize the main points in Dr. Bankard’s posts and then offer a critique of these points.

Bankard’s Claims

In his first post, Bankard explains his objections to the orthodox understanding of the atonement, known as the penal substitutionary atonement. This view states that Jesus died as our substitute on the Cross, appeasing the wrath of God against sin and satisfying the demands of God’s perfect justice.

Bankard argues that if the substitutionary atonement view is true then “God is either severely limited in power or unnecessarily cruel.”1 What is his rationale for this claim? If God can only forgive sin through blood and sacrifice, then He must be limited in power, and if God could forgive humanity in other ways but chooses the torture and death of His Son, then He seems to be quite cruel. Bankard goes one step further and states that he doesn’t think God willed the Cross because then God would have willed sinful actions. Instead, he says, Christ’s “crucifixion was the result of human sin.”

His second objection to the substitutionary atonement view is based squarely on his acceptance of molecules-to-man evolution. If humans evolved from primates, then the historicity of Adam and Eve is unlikely, meaning that they never brought humanity into a state of sin, which ultimately would be resolved by Christ’s sacrificial death on the Cross. Bankard’s statement about evolution’s impact on the Cross perfectly illustrates what Answers in Genesis has constantly told Christian leaders.

Substitutionary atonement sees original sin as a major reason for Christ’s death. But macroevolution calls the Fall and the doctrine of original sin into question. Thus, evolution poses a significant challenge to substitutionary atonement.2

Bankard’s second article focuses on his view of the atonement, or rather the Incarnation. His view of the Cross is more about Jesus experiencing what it’s like to be human so that He can really connect with us. As such, his view of the Cross has little, if anything, to do with atoning for man’s sin. Instead of focusing on the Cross, Bankard focuses on Christ’s life, arguing that the primary reason Jesus came was to show us how to truly be human—to show us what kingdom living really looks like. This functional view of salvation is consistent with recent articles on the BioLogos website that redefine the image of God to fit with evolutionary ideas. See “Evolution and What the Image of God Is Not” and “What Is the Image of God?” for an evaluation of this notion.

Critique

Bankard’s posts contain numerous theological errors and logical fallacies. His belief in evolution has clouded his reading of Scripture. For example, he claims that problems with a literal reading of Genesis led him away from interpreting the Bible’s earliest chapters in a straightforward manner. However, these “problems” are easily addressed.

Problems in Genesis?

He stated that as a young adult he was “deeply troubled by the divergent creation stories in Genesis 1 and 2.” These chapters do not contradict each other; they complement one another. Genesis 1–2:4 provides a broad overview of the Creation Week, while Genesis 2 zooms in on events that occurred on Day Six.

Bankard wondered how the word day could really refer to a 24-hour time period. “How could there be a day before the sun was created?” However, the sun is not required to mark the passing of a 24-hour time period on Earth. We use the sun today to recognize the start and end of a day, but it certainly is not required for timekeeping. God created light on Day One, and it seems that the Earth was rotating as well since there was a period of darkness and a period of light—the first day.

The account of Cain is said to be even more problematic. Cain moved to the land of Nod after killing Abel. But this troubled Bankard, and he asked, “Where on earth did all the people in Nod come from?” The Bible does not say that there were already people in the land of Nod when Cain traveled there. He brought his wife with him, and then he built a city. Obviously, the original inhabitants of Nod and the city of Enoch were Cain’s descendants.

Evolution Drives Theology

The theological rationale in these articles leaves much to be desired. It does not follow that if God only forgives sin through blood and sacrifice that He must be limited in power. The truth is that Scripture plainly states that death is the penalty for sin. God told Adam that if he ate from the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil that he would surely die (Genesis 2:17). Romans 6:23 tells us that “the wages of sin is death.” This is why the solution to the problem of sin and death is the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. If Adam’s sin did not bring physical death into this world, then the physical death of Christ on the Cross and His physical, bodily Resurrection from the dead have no connection with sin. Far from being limited in power, God demonstrates His power over sin and death by raising His Son from the dead.

Yet Bankard, based on his understanding of the evolutionary origin of man, does not believe Adam and Eve ever existed,3 so death cannot be the penalty for sin. Death must have existed for hundreds of millions of years before the first humans evolved.

Through the death of the perfect Man, God’s perfect justice is satisfied since sin requires death.

It also does not follow that since He chose to send His Son to die for our sins that He must be unnecessarily cruel. This might be the case if God sent an unwilling and unqualified person to die on the Cross. We must remember that God is triune, that the Son is also God. God became a man, and He willingly chose to lay down His life for our sins. Our Creator and Judge became one of us and took upon Himself the sins of the world so that we could be reconciled to Him. Through the death of the perfect Man, God’s perfect justice is satisfied since sin requires death. “For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:21–22).

The penal substitutionary atonement view of Christ’s death has been widely accepted by Bible-believing Christians for centuries. As such, many may be surprised that numerous views of the atonement have existed throughout church history. For example, Irenaeus (c. 125–202) proposed the recapitulation theory, Augustine (354–430) held to the ransom theory, and Anselm (1033–1109) developed the necessary-satisfaction theory.

Space does not allow for an evaluation of each of these other positions, but two points can be made. First, while each of these views can find some support in Scripture, they are at odds with other portions of the text, and as such, they are insufficient explanations of the atonement. Second, these views were developed in an attempt to explain certain ideas found in the Bible.

Bankard’s position is different than these other views of the atonement in that he bases it on a concept found nowhere in Scripture (evolution) and uses that foreign concept to reinterpret the words of the Bible. Consider his own words describing his rationale in searching for an alternate view of the atonement.

In my estimation, substitutionary atonement does not fit well with the theory of evolution.4

If evolution is true, then the universe is very old, humans evolved from primates, and the historical accuracy (but not the truth) of the Genesis narratives is called into question.5

The substitutionary view argues that Jesus’ death redeems the sin committed by Adam and Eve in the garden. To adopt this view, one must read Genesis 1–3 more literally. At times, this kind of biblical hermeneutic may run counter to evolutionary theory. The view sketched above does not require a historical Adam and Eve or a traditional concept of original sin, making it more compatible with evolution.6

Commentary is hardly needed on these points since Bankard rightly states that evolution contradicts the historical accuracy of Genesis. He argues that if one interprets Genesis metaphorically or allegorically then one can still hold to the truth of the Genesis narratives. This would be accurate if Genesis were intended to be taken allegorically, but the biblical evidence against this notion is overwhelming. Jesus treated these early chapters as literal history, as did any author of Scripture who referred to them. For example, Paul built entire arguments on the truth that Adam’s sin brought death into the world (Romans 5:12–21; 1 Corinthians 15:21–22). Furthermore, Luke 3 lists the genealogy of Jesus all the way back to Adam. But if Adam was not a real person, then how could Jesus be descended from him?

Denying God’s Plan

Throughout the articles, Bankard seems to conflate the atonement with the Incarnation. When he starts to speak of the atonement, he changes gears to discuss Christ’s life rather than His death. This is because he believes that we are saved by Christ’s life and the example He set—not by His atoning work at the Cross.

The most troubling aspect of Bankard’s article is his outright denial of Christ’s substitutionary atonement. In his second article, he attempts to explain that Jesus came not to die for man, but to experience life as a man. Throughout his post, he sets up the two ideas as though one must choose one view over another. He states that according to the substitutionary view, “God becomes human in the person of Jesus of Nazareth with the sole purpose of dying for humanity’s sin. But I argue that this view of the incarnation is somewhat limited. Jesus doesn’t become human to die. Jesus takes on flesh and bone to show us how to really live, how to be fully human.”7

By setting up the argument in this way, Bankard commits the logical fallacy of bifurcation (the either/or fallacy). He gives the reader the choice of only two options when at least one more is available. He misrepresents the substitutionary view by claiming that Christ’s death was the “sole purpose” for the incarnation. This is absolutely false, and it would be wrong for us to think that Jesus became a man for only one purpose. He came because God so loved the world (John 3:16). He came so that He could experience humanity and become our high priest who can sympathize with our weaknesses (Hebrews 4:15). He came to fulfill prophecy (Matthew 1:22–23). He came to save sinners (1 Timothy 1:15). And yes, He most certainly came to die on the Cross (John 19:28–30).

Christ’s death was absolutely part of God’s divine plan.

Sadly, Bankard apparently denies the last statement above. He states that “Christ’s death was not part of God’s divine plan. It was the tragic result of human sin.” Besides another obvious bifurcation fallacy (Christ’s death was both part of God’s divine plan and the result of human sin), the Bible explicitly teaches in a number of ways that Christ’s death was absolutely part of God’s divine plan.

We are told in Revelation 13:8 that Jesus is the “Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” The Crucifixion and Resurrection of the Messiah were part of God’s plan before He ever created us. He knew man would rebel, and He already knew how man would be redeemed. The Old Testament prophesied that the Messiah would be killed, but not for Himself (Daniel 9:26; Isaiah 53:8–9). The psalmist even gave us a glimpse of the form of execution by which the Messiah would die (Psalm 22:14–18). Jesus told people several times that He was going to die (Matthew 12:39–40, 20:17–19; John 2:19, 12:32–33).

If these clear statements about the Messiah’s death were not enough, the Bible teaches us that the death of Jesus Christ was the only way for sinners to be saved. On the night that He was arrested, Jesus pleaded with the Father, “O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39). Knowing all that was about to happen to Him, Jesus asked the Father to find a way other than the Cross to save sinners. Yet the fact that He still endured the Cross demonstrated that there could be no other way to save sinners.

Ironically, it is Bankard’s view that makes God unnecessarily cruel. If evolution were true, then God willed the deaths of trillions of creatures for millions of years. He also sent His Son to live on earth to show us the perfect example of humanity. But if the cross was not required to save sinners, then why did God permit Jesus to face such torture if it wasn’t even necessary? Was He powerless to stop it?

Finally, the Apostle Paul summarized the gospel message he preached.

Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: the Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. (1 Corinthians 15:3–4, emphasis added)

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. (2 Corinthians 5:21)

The message that saves souls is the message about the substitutionary death, burial, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Conclusion

Answers in Genesis has repeatedly stated that salvation is not contingent upon one’s acceptance of the straightforward reading of the Creation account, since salvation is based on the atoning death, burial, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:3–4). However, we have also warned the church for over 20 years that the acceptance of the billions of years necessarily undermines crucial Christian doctrines, including the gospel message itself.

Dr. Bankard’s articles seek to find a new understanding of the Lord’s death in an evolutionary worldview, and this new understanding demonstrates the accuracy of our warnings. By elevating evolutionary beliefs about the past above the truth of Scripture, Dr. Bankard strays into error by denying key elements of Christ’s sacrifice and its purpose that are clearly spelled out in Scripture.

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The Predicted Messiah – Jesus Christ the Messiah – Lamb of God – Eternal Father – Prince of Peace

In hindsight, a good mystery fits together perfectly, like the various pieces of an intricate puzzle that need but one final piece to link the parts that form the completed magnificent panorama. Until that final piece is added, the mystery is virtually impossible to grasp in its entirety. In fact, while the mystery is developing, the inquisitor’s greatest challenge is to assess correctly which pieces of information or evidence are of significance and which are the banal elements that add nothing of consequence to the story. Is it important that Mr. Brown forgot his hat at the train station? Does it matter that the water faucet in the kitchen suddenly is not working properly? Inevitably, the astute inquisitor accurately pinpoints those elements in the story that are of great import. The less astute inaccurately labels ordinary events as important, or fails to understand fully events that were of major consequence.

Such is the case when approaching the study of the predicted Messiah, or, as it were, when solving the mystery of the Messiah. Anyone familiar with New Testament writings is quite familiar with the term “mystery” as it is applied to God’s plan for the redemption of the human race through the predicted Messiah. Paul wrote concerning this mystery: “But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before ages for our glory” (1 Corinthians 2:7). In his letter to the Colossians, he stated: “I became a minister according to the stewardship from God which was given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God, the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to his saints” (1:25-26). Paul’s epistle to the Ephesians contains similar comments: “[I]f indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you, how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery…which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets” (3:3,5).

The New Testament writers identified for us several characteristics of this Messianic mystery: (1) The mystery revolves around the prophesied Messiah and the redemption of mankind; (2) The mystery is one that has been hidden in various ways from all generations of people prior to the time of the New Testament; (3) The various tenets of the mystery are divinely revealed and made known only through divine communication; (4) During the times of the New Testament writers, God revealed the final piece of the mystery to the New Testament writers themselves.

The intention of this discussion is to trace out the various divinely revealed tenets of the Messianic mystery. Upon completion of that task, we must then determine if, in truth, the New Testament writers did possess the final, completing piece of that mystery. We have dealt in other places with the traces of a Savior originating from various sources outside the biblical writings (see Butt and Thompson, 2001). Therefore, since the Hebrew Scriptures are renowned for being the most complete repository of Messianic predictions available, we will focus our attention upon them.

OLD TESTAMENT SCRIPTURES

In contemplating the Old Testament, Jewish Scriptures, it would be beneficial for us to consider several important features of the writings. First, the opening eleven chapters of the first book, Genesis, do not relate to the Hebrews only, but to the broader scope of humanity as a whole. These chapters describe the creation of the Universe, the fall of man from his perfect state of innocence, the wickedness of man and the destructive, world-wide Flood, and the repopulation of the Earth. They contain approximately 2,000 years of history, not a year of which necessarily has anything to do with the Jewish nation, any more than with any other nation.

Second, the remainder of the Old Testament, from Genesis 12-Malachi, focuses primarily on the descendants of Abraham. Note that the narratives and terms often used to describe these descendants are none too flattering. They are called stubborn, stiff-necked, sinful, rebellious, and a host of adjectives equally as caustic (see Deuteronomy 9:7; Ezekiel 2:3-10; Hosea 4:16). And yet, these descendants of Abraham are the ones responsible for preserving the very Scriptures that repeatedly rebuked them for their idolatrous backsliding from God. Remember, too, that they could have altered and preserved these writings in a more flattering form. From archaeological finds we have learned that other nations surrounding ancient Israel often chose to embellish their history, intentionally excluding derogatory remarks or events concerning themselves.

Why did the Israelites preserve the writings as they did? The answer to this is actually twofold. First, they believed the particular writings that they preserved to be inspired by God, a belief that can be proven beyond doubt (see Thompson, 2001). But secondly, each of the 39 books contains a calculated revelation describing some aspect of the coming Messiah, who, according to these Scriptures, is not only destined to save the nation of Israel, but the entire world. In fact, the reader cannot progress far into the Old Testament writings before he is inundated with descriptions of, and predictions concerning, the coming Messiah.

WERE THE JEWS LOOKING FOR A MESSIAH?

It has been suggested that the ancient Jewish scribes, rabbis, and general population were not really looking for a personal Messiah. Eminently respected Messianic Jewish author David Baron first published his work, Rays of Messiah’s Glory, in 1886. In that volume, Baron wrote:

I am aware also that in recent times many intelligent Jews, backed by rationalistic, so-called Christians…deny that there is hope of a Messiah in the Old Testament Scriptures, and assert that the prophecies on which Christians ground such a belief contain only “vague anticipations and general hopes, but no definite predictions of a personal Messiah,” and that consequently the alleged agreement of the gospel history with prophecy is imaginary (2000, p. 16).

In his statements that refute the “non-Messianic” view of Old Testament Scripture, Baron wrote: “Even Maimonides, the great antagonist of Christianity, composed that article of the Jewish creed which unto the present day is repeated daily by every true Jew: ‘I believe with a perfect faith that the Messiah will come, and although His coming be delayed, I will await His daily appearance’ ” (p. 18). He commented further: “Aben Ezra, Rashi, Kimchi, Abarbanel, and almost every other respectable and authoritative Jewish commentator, although not recognizing Jesus as the Messiah, are yet unanimous that a personal Messiah is taught in the Old Testament Scriptures” (pp. 19-20). Baron also noted that only an “insignificant minority of the Jews” had dared to suggest that the Old Testament lacks definitive predictions of a personal Messiah. He then eloquently stated: [W]ith joy we behold the nation [Jews—KB], as such, still clinging to the anchor which has been the mainstay of their national existence for so many ages—the hope of a personal Messiah, which is the essence of the Old Testament Scriptures” (2000, p. 20).

In his volume, The Messiah in the Old Testament: In Light of Rabbinical Writings, Risto Santala wrote: “If we study the Bible and the Rabbinic literature carefully, we cannot fail to be surprised at the abundance of Messianic interpretation in the earliest works known to us…. [T]he Talmud states unequivocally: ‘All the prophets prophesied only for the days of the Messiah’ ” (1992, p. 22).

In regard to specific Old Testament prophecies, a plethora of rabbinical commentary verifies that the nation of Israel certainly had in view a coming Messiah. Concerning Genesis 49:10, the noted author Aaron Kligerman wrote: “The rabbis of old, though not agreeing with each other as to the meaning of the root Shiloh, were almost unanimous in applying the term to the Messiah” (1957, pp. 19-20). Immediately after this statement, Kligerman listed the Targum Onkelos, Targum Jerusalem, and the Peshito all as referring to Genesis 49:10 as a Messianic prophecy pointing toward an individual, personal Messiah (p. 20). With reference to Genesis 49:10, David Baron wrote:

With regard to this prophecy, the first thing I want to point out is that all antiquity agrees in interpreting it of a personal Messiah. This is the view of the LXX Version [Septuagint—KB]; the Targumim of Onkelos, Yonathan, and Jerusalem; the Talmud; the Sohar; the ancient book of “Bereshith Rabba;” and among modern Jewish commentators, even Rashi, who says, “Until Shiloh come, that is King Messiah, Whose is the kingdom” (2000, p. 258, emp. added).

Concerning the book of Isaiah and the predictive, Messianic prophecy contained within it, Santala stated: “The Messianic nature of the book of Isaiah is so clear that the oldest Jewish sources, the Targum, Midrash and Talmud, speak of the Messiah in connection with 62 separate verses” (1992, pp. 164-165). Santala then, in a footnote, proceeded to list several of those verses, including Isaiah 4:2, 9:5, 10:27, 11:1, 11:6, 14:29, 16:1, 28:5, 42:1, 43:10, 52:13, and 60:1 (p. 165).

The prophet Jeremiah contains material that has long been recognized as Messianic in nature. Concerning Jeremiah 23:5-6, David Baron wrote: “There is scarcely any contrary opinion among ancient and modern Jews but that this is a Messianic prophecy” (2000, p. 78).

In truth, statements that verify that the ancient Israelite nation recognized certain passages in the Old Testament as Messianic are legion. Regardless of what a person believes about the identity of the Messiah, it cannot be gainsaid that the nation of Israel, through the influence of the Old Testament writers, has been waiting for His coming.

THE PROTEVANGELIUM

Virtually from the first glimpse of human life on the Earth, traces of the predicted Messiah were divinely revealed to mankind. All too familiar is the tragic story of the fall of man. Under God’s gracious care, Adam and Eve were specially designed to suit each other’s needs and were ushered into the Edenic Paradise, the joys of which humanity has not seen since nor will see again this side of eternity. God gave the first family only one prohibitory commandment—that they should not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If they chose to rebel against this lone prohibition, God informed them that the consequence would be death. Yet despite God’s gracious warning, Eve’s senses were dulled by her evil desires, and she soon fell prey to the deceitfulness of sin, convincing her husband Adam to join in her rebellion.

Into this scene of shame and sin, God brought judgment upon all parties involved. Death would be the consequence of this sinful action, as well as increased pain in childbirth for the woman and increased hardship and toil for the man. Yet in the midst of God’s curse upon the serpent, He included a ray of glorious hope for humanity. To the serpent he said: “And I will put enmity between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel” (Genesis 3:15). This brief statement made by God to the serpent concerning the Seed of woman is often referred to as the protevangelium. J.A. Huffman commented on the passage:

Here the prophecy of a deliverer is unmistakably uttered. Even a temporary bruise, that of the heel, suggesting the apparent, momentary defeat of the deliverer is predicted: but, at the same time, the deliverer’s ultimate and final triumph is prophesied, in his bruising of the serpent’s head, which means a fatal blow (1956, p. 38).

The Jewish scholar, Aaron Kligerman, noted that three things stand out in this first prediction of the Messiah, “namely that the Deliverer must be—(A) of the seed of woman and (B) That He is to be temporarily hindered and (C) Finally victorious (1957, p. 13, italics in orig.). Kligerman further noted that the ancient rabbinical opinions found in the Palestinian Targum testify “that in Genesis 3:15 there is promised a healing of the bite in the heel from the serpent, which is to take place ‘at the end of the days, in the days of King Messiah’ ” (p. 14). [NOTE: The Targums “are interpretive renderings of the books of Hebrew Scriptures…into Aramaic” (Metzger, 1993). Such versions were needed when the major populations of the Jews no longer spoke Hebrew as their primary language. Metzger further explains that the oral Targum began as a simple paraphrase of the text, “but eventually it became more elaborate and incorporated explanatory details.” John Stenning, in his detailed article on the Targum, explained that oral Targum was introduced several years prior to the first century A.D. in connection with “the custom of reading sections from the Law at the weekly services in the synagogues” (1911).]

Of the protevangelium, Charles A. Briggs, in his classic work, Messianic Prophecy, noted:

Thus we have in this fundamental prophecy explicitly a struggling, suffering, but finally victorious human race, and implicitly a struggling, suffering and finally victorious son of woman, a second Adam, the head of the race…. The protevangelium is a faithful miniature of the entire history of humanity, a struggling seed ever battling for ultimate victory…. [U]ntil it is realized in the sublime victories of redemption” (1988 reprint, p. 77).

Briggs went on to comment that the protevangelium “is the only Messianic prophecy which has been preserved from the revelations made by God to the antediluvian world” (p. 77).

Here, then, is the seminal prophecy made to pave the way for all others that would deal with the coming of the great Deliverer of mankind. Several qualities of this coming Deliverer are readily apparent. First, He will come in human form as the seed of woman. Second, He will defeat the effects of sin brought about by the fall of man and the entrance of sin into the world. Third, He will be hindered in His redemptive activity by the serpent, Satan, who will inflict upon Him a minor wound. Fourth, He will ultimately overcome the wound of Satan and finally triumph. In this first prediction of the Messiah, we catch an underlying theme of a suffering, victorious redeemer—a theme that will be fleshed out in the remaining pages of the Old Testament.

THE SEED OF ABRAHAM

The protevangelium in Genesis 3:15 predicted that the conquering Messiah would belong to the seed of woman, taking on a human form. But that feature alone, admittedly, does not help much in identifying the Messiah, since billions of people have been born of woman. In order for Messianic prophecy to prepare its readers for the actual Messiah, the scope would need to be narrowed.

Such narrowing of the Messianic scope can be seen in God’s promise to the patriarch, Abraham. In Genesis 12, the Bible records the fact that God specifically chose Abraham from among all the peoples of the world (Genesis 12:1-3). Through Abraham, God promised that all the nations of the world would be blessed, and that Abraham’s descendants would multiply as the sand of the sea and the stars of the sky. As Huffman noted, “It was to Abraham, the son of Terah, a descendant of Shem, that God gave a peculiar promise, one which could not be omitted in any serious effort to trace the Messianic hope” (1956, p. 41). For many years, this promise of progeny remained unfulfilled due to the fact that Abraham’s wife, Sarah, was barren. In order to “help” God fulfill His promise, Abraham and Sarah devised a plan by which Abraham could have a child. Sarah sent her handmaid, Hagar, to serve as a surrogate wife to Abraham. As a result of this union, Hagar conceived and gave birth to a child named Ishmael.

In Genesis 17, God renewed His covenant with Abraham and instructed Abraham to institute circumcision as a sign of the covenant. In Genesis 17:19, God informed Abraham that Sarah would have a son named Isaac. In an interesting conversation with God, Abraham petitioned God to let Ishmael be the son of promise and the heir of the covenant that God made. Yet God insisted that Ishmael was not the son of promise and that the promise of all nations being blessed through Abraham’s descendants would not pass through Ishmael, but would be fulfilled only through Isaac. God said: “But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you at this set time next year” (Genesis 17:21). James Smith, in writing about God’s promise to bless all nations through Abraham, noted that this promise “has Messianic implications. Both the Church Fathers and Jewish Rabbis so interpreted it” (1993, p. 47). Aaron Kligerman concurred when he wrote about God’s promise to Abraham: “This is more than the promise of ‘The Hope of a Prosperous Era.’ It is a promise of the coming of a ‘Personal Messiah’ ” (1957, pp. 17-18). At this point in human history, then, the Messianic implications fall to the descendants of Isaac. It is important not to miss the significance of the Messianic hope through Abraham and Isaac. The scope of the Messiah has been narrowed from all other peoples and nations of the world, to a single nomadic family. And yet, not just to Abraham’s family in its entirety, but to only one of Abraham’s sons—Isaac.

But the picture becomes even clearer with the birth of the twin sons of Isaac and Rebekah. Because of abnormalities with her pregnancy, Rebekah went to inquire of the Lord about her situation. To answer her questions, the Lord said: “Two nations are in your womb, two peoples shall be separated from your body; one people shall be stronger than the other, and the older shall serve the younger” (Genesis 25:23). Concerning this passage, Briggs noted: “This prediction breaks up the seed of Isaac into two nations, assigns the headship with the blessing to Jacob, and makes Edom subject to him” (1988, p. 90). The fact that the promised Messiah would come through Jacob’s descendants becomes increasingly clear throughout the Genesis narrative that tells the stories of Jacob and Esau. God confirmed the promise to Jacob in Genesis 28:14, when He said to the patriarch: “Also your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south; and in you and in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (emp. added). The picture of the Messiah continues to become increasingly focused: The seed of woman, the seed of Abraham, the seed of Isaac, the seed of Jacob.

TWO MESSIAHS:
A SUFFERING SERVANT AND REIGNING KING

Throughout the Old Testament, various Messianic passages refer to a majestic, glorious King who will reign over a never-ending kingdom. Yet, at the same time, other Messianic prophecies depict a suffering Messiah who will bear the guilt and sin of the entire world. Because these two aspects of Messianic prophecy seem contradictory, many in the ancient Jewish community could not understand how such diverse prophetic sentiments could be fulfilled in a single individual. Due to this conundrum, ancient and modern Jews have posited the idea that two Messiahs would come: one would be the suffering Servant, while the other would be the glorious King.

Concerning this separation of the Messiah into two different individuals, John Ankerberg and his colleagues John Weldon and Walter Kaiser wrote:

[T]hey (early Jewish rabbis—KB) could not reconcile the statements that so clearly spoke of a suffering and dying Messiah with those verses in other passages that spoke of a triumphant and victorious Messiah. What is important to note is that they did recognize that both pictures somehow applied to the Messiah. But they assumed it was impossible to reconcile both views in one person. Rather than seeing one Messiah in two different roles, they saw two Messiahs—the suffering and dying Messiah, called “Messiah ben Joseph,” and the victorious conquering Messiah, called “Messiah ben David” (1989, pp. 57-58).

Jewish rabbi Robert M. Cohen stated:

The rabbis saw that scripture portrayed two different pictures of King Messiah. One would conquer and reign and bring Israel back to the land by world peace and bring the fullness of obedience to the Torah. They called him Messiah ben David. The other picture is of a servant who would die and bear Israel’s sin that they refer to as the “leprous one” based on Isaiah 53 (Cohen, n.d.; also see Parsons, 2003-2006).

It is evident, from the rabbinical view of two Messiahs, that the themes of suffering and regal authority were so vividly portrayed in Old Testament Messianic prophecy that both themes demanded fulfillment. To suggest two Messiah’s provided such a fulfillment. However, the dual Messianic idea failed to comprehend the actual nature of Messianic prophecy, and missed a primary facet of the Messianic personality: that the Messiah would be both a suffering Servant and a majestic King. As Huffman rightly observed: “The theme of Messianism is composed of two inseparable strands or threads—the scarlet and the golden, or the suffering and the reigning, or the priestly and the royal” (1956, p. 7). To misunderstand or miss either of these two interwoven threads would be to miss the Messiah completely.

REGAL KING

Genesis 49:10—Shiloh

The Lord kept His promise to Jacob and multiplied his descendants exceedingly. His twelve sons and their wives and children escorted him to Egypt to live in the land of Goshen at the behest of Joseph, who had been elevated in Egypt as the Pharaoh’s chief advisor. As Jacob neared the end of his rather long life (over 130 years, Genesis 47:9), he gathered his sons around his death bed, and stated: “Gather together, that I may tell you what shall befall you in the last days” (Genesis 49:1). Following this introductory statement, Jacob proceeded to address each of his sons and bestow blessings (or in some cases, curses) on his descendants.

In the midst of his final speech, in his blessing on Judah, Jacob stated: “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes; and to Him shall be the obedience of the people” (Genesis 49:10). The Messianic nature of this statement has long been recognized and discussed in ancient Jewish circles. As previously stated, David Baron wrote: “With regard to this prophecy, the first thing I want to point out is that all antiquity agrees in interpreting it of a personal Messiah. This is the view of the LXX. Version; the Targumim of Onkelos, Yonathan, and Jerusalem; the Talmud; the Sohar; the ancient book of ‘Bereshith Rabba;’ and among modern Jewish commentators, even Rashi, who says, ‘Until Shiloh come, that is King Messiah, Whose is the kingdom’ ” (2000, p. 258, emp. added). Aaron Kligerman added: “The rabbis of old, though not agreeing with each other as to the meaning of the root Shiloh, were almost unanimous in applying the term to the Messiah” (1957, p. 19-20). Santala, in his discussion of several of the oldest Jewish documents available, wrote:

Targum Onqulos says of Judah’s scepter that it will not depart “until the Messiah comes, he who has the power to reign.” Targum Jonathan puts it that the verse refers to “the age of the Messiah-King, the King who will come as the youngest of his children.” Targum Yerushalmi speaks of the ‘time’ when “the Messiah-King will come” (1992, p. 50, italics in orig.).

Much commentary and debate surrounds the “Shiloh” prophecy found in Genesis 49:10. It is often viewed as an indication of the time that the Messiah should arrive on the scene. As can be deduced from Kligerman’s quote, the actual origin and exact meaning of the word Shiloh are disputed in many scholarly circles. Yet, despite the controversy in reference to this prophecy, the one aspect of it that stands out is the central idea that this is a Messianic Prophecy. As such, it narrows the identity of the Messiah even further to a descendant, not just of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, but to the house of Judah.

The Son of David

Of all the monarchs that possessed the throne of Israel, none is as storied as King David. From his youth he proved himself to be a courageous, valiant warrior who trusted in the Lord. He was described as a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). He wrote many of the Psalms, and ushered in a united kingdom that paved the way for the majestic reign of his son, Solomon.

David’s relationship to the Messiah is a rather interesting one. First, Jewish antiquity recognized the fact that Messiah would be the Son of David. Santala commented: “Tradition ascribes 73 of the 150 psalms to King David. In the Rabbinic literature the Messiah is constantly referred to as the ‘Son of David.’ For this reason, everywhere the future blessing of the house of David is described, the Sages saw Messianic material” (1992, p. 109, italics in orig.).

Such Messianic sentiments in regard to David find their seminal origin in the promise made by God to David through the prophet Nathan. In 2 Samuel 7, the text narrates the events that lead to this promise. David had become a great king and his reign had spread far and wide. Due to his love for the Lord, he wanted to show honor to God by building a glorious temple in which the Ark of the Covenant could be housed. He mentioned his idea to the prophet Nathan, who immediately encouraged the building plans. But soon after Nathan had told David to do all that was in his heart, God conveyed to Nathan that He did not want David to build a temple. Instead, God would commission David’s son, Solomon, to construct the magnificent edifice. Yet, in God’s message to David, He promised: “And your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever” (2 Samuel 7:16).

In later Psalms, the promise of David’s descendant reigning over an eternal Kingdom is expanded and given more substance. Psalm 89 contains several Messianic aspects, not the least of which is the following statement: “I have made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn to My Servant David: ‘Your seed I will establish forever, and build up your throne to all generations’ ” (vss. 3-4). Psalm 132 contains a very similar statement: “The Lord has sworn in truth to David; He will not turn from it: ‘I will set upon your throne the fruit of your body. If your sons will keep My covenant and My testimony which I shall teach them, their sons also shall sit upon your throne forevermore.”

Along with the various inspired psalmists, other Old Testament writers noted the Messianic lineage through David and his throne. One of the most memorable of all Messianic predictions from the Old Testament, Isaiah 9:6-7, mentioned the Messianic reign upon the throne of David:

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

Yet, along with the fact that the Messiah was to be of the seed of David and reign on His throne, at least one Psalm places David in a subservient position to this majestic Messianic ruler. Psalm 110 opens with the statement: “The Lord said to my Lord, ‘Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool’ ” (Psalm 110:1). In regard to Psalm 110, Briggs noted: “The 110th Psalm is in the form of an utterance from Jahveh respecting the son of David. It is therefore a prediction that unfolds the prediction of Nathan” (1988, p. 132). Walter Kaiser, in his discussion of Psalm 110, wrote: “While the external evidence that this psalm is Messianic is large, the internal evidence is just as overwhelming” (1995, p. 94). In reference to the Messiah mentioned in the first verse, Kaiser stated: “That unnamed Lord is a royal person, for he was invited to ‘sit at [God the Father’s] right hand….’ If the God of the universe invited this other Sovereign to take such a distinguished seat alongside himself, then we may be sure he was no one less than the promised Messiah, invited to participate in the divine government of the world” (p. 94).

Psalm 110 adds an interesting aspect to the character and position of the Messiah. Not only would the Messiah be born from the seed of David and reign on the throne of David, He also would be exalted to a position far above David, to such an extent that David called him “Lord” in Psalm 110. David’s statements in this Psalm not only speak to the pre-existence of the Messiah before David, but also to the pre-eminence that the Messiah would assume.

With these details, the portrait of the Messiah becomes increasingly sharp. He was to come from the seed of woman and crush the power of Satan. He was to be of the seed of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah and now David. He would rule on the throne of David, yet He existed before David and was so preeminent that David called Him Lord. And there would be no end of His glorious, majestic kingdom.

THE SUFFERING SERVANT

Anyone who reads the Old Testament would be hard pressed to miss the idea of the Messiah’s glorious regal prominence. Yet, as equally transparent is the idea that the Messiah was to suffer. The protevangelium in Genesis 3:15 makes reference to this suffering in the statement about the heel of the Seed of women being bruised, but it does not include the details of this suffering. The theme of suffering introduced in Genesis 3:15 is expanded in the remainder of the Old Testament.

Isaiah 52:13-53:12

The passage of Scripture found in Isaiah 52:13-53:12 stands as a somber reminder of the horrendous suffering that the Messiah would endure. The text mentions that He would be highly exalted and extolled (52:13). And yet His appearance would be marred more than any man (52:14). He would not be physically attractive (53:2), and He would be despised and rejected by men, familiar with sorrows and grief (53:4). He would be perfect and without sin (53:9), and yet He would be beaten, suffer, and die for the sins of the Lord’s people (53:5-6,11). This suffering Servant would be killed among the wicked, but buried among the rich (53:8-9). Yet, in spite of His death (or even because of it), He would be numbered among the great and divide the spoil with the strong (53:12).

Needless to say, this picture of the Messiah seems to stand in stark contrast to the glorious King on David’s throne. As has been mentioned, this contrast has caused some to concoct two Messiahs to accommodate the prophecies. Still others have attempted to discount Messianic prophecies such as Isaiah 52:13-53:12. Some have suggested that this passage of Scripture is not Messianic in nature, but that the servant under discussion represents the collective nation of Israel. Along these lines, David Baron noted: “Modern Jews, in common with a number of rationalistic so-called Christians, are trying hard these days to weaken the Messianic application of this remarkable prophecy” (2000, p. 225). James Smith stated:

The Messianic interpretation of Isaiah 53 was acknowledged by Jewish authorities until the Middle Ages. Almost all Christian leaders until the beginning of the nineteenth century saw in this passage a clear picture of the suffering, death and resurrection of the Messiah. Jews and some Christian scholars now hold primarily to the collective view of the Servant: The Servant is Israel as a whole, or the remnant. The traditional view, however, has much to commend it (1993, p. 307).

That the ancient Jewish community, and the bulk of scholars for the last 2,000 years, have recognized Isaiah 53 as a prophecy concerning a personal, individual Messiah cannot be questioned. Baron correctly commented regarding this sentiment:

That until recent times this prophecy has been almost universally received by Jews as referring to Messiah is evident from Targum Yonathan, who introduces Messiah by name in chapter lii 13, from the Talmud (“Sanhedrin,” fol. 98, b); and from Zohar, a book which the Jews as a rule do not mention without the epithet “holy…” (2000, p. 226).

The recent view that Isaiah 53 refers to the nation of Israel not only garners little (if any) support from ancient Jewish commentators, it collapses under the scrutiny of critical examination. The foremost objection to the view that Israel collectively is the Servant in Isaiah 53 is the fact that the Servant is described as perfect and sinless (53:9), not deserving the punishment that He willingly accepts for the sins of God’s people. No one remotely familiar with the nation of Israel as portrayed in the Old Testament would dare suggest that they were sinless. From their first few steps out of Egypt and into freedom they began to provoke God and bring judgment upon themselves. On numerous occasions the Old Testament depicts the Israelites’ sin of such a rebellious nature that God executes thousands of them. One fundamental aspect of an atoning sacrifice in Old Testament literature was its condition of spotless perfection. No nation of mere mortal men, including the ancient Israelite nation, could suffice as an atoning sacrifice for sins, as the Servant does in Isaiah 53. Nor could a sinful nation make another group of people “righteous” as the Lord’s Servant would. Furthermore, the Servant of the Lord is depicted as being stricken for “transgressions of my people.” If the Servant was collectively depicted as the nation of Israel, then who would be the Lord’s people in 53:8? [NOTE: For a more complete refutation of Israel as the Servant of the Lord in Isaiah 53, see Baron, 2000, pp. 225-251.]

Indeed, the evidence points overwhelmingly to the fact that Isaiah 53 stands as one of the most poignant portrayals in all of the Old Testament of an individual, suffering Messiah. As Smith correctly noted: “The Servant of the Lord here is portrayed in a strongly individualistic way. It takes rich imagination or strong prejudice to see the Servant here as a symbol for Israel, the remnant, the prophets, or any other group” (p. 1993, 307). Kaiser similarly commented: “Undoubtedly, this is the summit of OT prophetic literature. Few passages can rival it for clarity on the suffering, death, burial, and resurrection of the Messiah (1995, p. 178).

VARIOUS SPECIFIC MESSIANIC PROPHECIES

In addition to the broad strokes portraying the Messiah as a reigning king and suffering servant, there are a host of more specific, detailed prophecies that relate to His coming. In regard to the number of Messianic prophecies, Sintala wrote: “It is estimated that the Old Testament contains altogether some 456 prophecies concerning Christ. Of these 75 are to be found in the Pentateuch, 243 in the Prophets and 138 in the ‘Writings’ and Psalms” (1992, p. 149; cf. Free and Vos, 1992, p. 241).

Space prohibits a listing of all of these prophecies, but a representative sampling is appropriate. The Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem in Judea (Micah 5:2) of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14). He was to be betrayed by a friend (Psalm 41:9) for thirty pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:13). The Lord’s Ruler would come into Jerusalem riding on the foal of a donkey (Zechariah 9:9). He would be buried with the rich (Isaiah 53:9). During His suffering, His clothes would be distributed to those who cast lots for them (Psalm 22:18). His attackers would pierce Him (Zechariah 12:10). Even though His physical suffering would be severe, His bones would not be broken (Psalm 34:20). And in spite of His death, His physical body would not experience decay (Psalm 16:10). This small sampling of specific prophetic details is only a fraction of the many Old Testament prophecies that exist. The prophecies were specifically designed to be an efficient mechanism by which the Jewish community could recognize the Messiah when He arrived.

WHO IS THE MESSIAH?

When all of the pieces of the Messianic puzzle are put together, one individual stands out as the only person who fulfilled every single prophecy in minute detail—Jesus Christ. The life and activities of Jesus Christ as recorded in the New Testament documents blend the theme of a regal monarch and a suffering servant into one magnificent portrait of the triumphant Jesus who was the sacrificial lamb at His death on the cross, and Who became the triumphant Lion of Judah in His resurrection from the grave. The lineage of Jesus Christ is meticulously traced in order to show that He qualified as the Seed of Abraham, of Isaac, of Jacob, of Judah, and of David (see Matthew 1 and Luke 3:23-38). The narrative detailing His birth verifies that He was born in Bethlehem of Judea, from which city the Messiah would arise (Luke 2:1-7). The birth narrative also intricately portrays the pre-existence of Jesus before time began, fulfilling the prophecy that the Messiah would come before King David. Furthermore, Jesus did, in fact, enter Jerusalem riding on the foal of a donkey (Matthew 21:1-11).

The New Testament narratives depicting the death of Jesus Christ verify that Jesus was betrayed by His friend and sold for exactly 30 pieces of silver (Matthew 24:14-16). At His death His bones were not broken, soldiers cast lots for His garments, and His side was pierced with a spear (John 19:33-37 and Matthew 27:35). During His suffering, He was numbered with the transgressors as Isaiah 53 predicted by being crucified between two thieves, and at His death He was buried in the tomb of a wealthy man as was also foretold (Matthew 27:57). This type of verification could continue for many pages. The life of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, as depicted in the New Testament documents, was designed to fulfill the Messianic prophecy of the Old Testament.

Due to this overwhelming congruence of the life of Jesus Christ with the predictive Messianic prophecy of the Old Testament, some have suggested that Jesus was an imposter who was able, by masterful manipulation, to so artificially organize His life as to make it look like He was the Messiah. Such a contention cannot be reasonably maintained in light of the fact that many of the prophecies were far beyond His control. Obviously, it would be impossible for a person to arrange where he would be born. Furthermore, it would be impossible to coordinate events so that He could ensure that He was buried in the tomb of a rich man or crucified among thieves. How could the betrayal price of Judas be manipulated by Jesus? And how, pray tell, would Jesus have managed to arrange it so that soldiers cast lots for His clothing? The idea that Jesus manipulated events to make it appear as if He was the Messiah not only is indefensible, but it also speaks to the fact that Jesus obviously was the fulfillment of the Old Testament, Messianic prophecies.

Others have objected to Jesus as the Messiah based on the idea that the New Testament documents are not reliable, and were artificially concocted to describe things that Jesus never really did. This objection also falls flat in light of the actual evidence. It cannot be denied that the New Testament has proven itself to be the most reliable book in ancient history. When it records people, places, and events that are checkable using archaeological means, those people, places, and events invariably prove to be factual and historic (see Butt, 2004). Again, the abundant evidence verifies that the New Testament is accurate and factual. Many of the Messianic prophecies documented in the New Testament do not describe anything inherently miraculous. There was nothing miraculous about Jesus being buried in a rich man’s tomb. Nor was there anything miraculous about Jesus riding into Jerusalem on the foal of a donkey, or being betrayed by His friend for 30 pieces of silver. These events are, if not ordinary, at least very plausible, everyday events that theoretically could have happened to anybody. And yet, due to the fact that such everyday events had been predicted about the Messiah hundreds of years before the arrival of Jesus, the fulfillment of the events becomes one of the most amazing miracles recorded in the Bible. It is no wonder that Jesus, the apostles, and the early church used fulfilled Messianic prophecy as one of its foundational pillars of proof and evangelistic tools.

APPEALING TO PROPHECY

Even a slight familiarity with the New Testament texts sufficiently demonstrates the idea that Jesus, the apostles, and the other New Testament writers used the Old Testament Messianic prophecies as one of their main apologetic tools to prove the deity and Messianic role of Jesus Christ.

The Writers of the Gospel Accounts Applied Messianic Prophecy to Jesus Christ

The Gospel writers repeatedly peppered their narratives of the life and actions of Jesus Christ with allusions, quotes, and Messianic prophecies from the Old Testament, which they applied to Jesus. Mathew 1 includes the Messianic prophecy taken from Isaiah 7:14 in which a virgin is predicted to bear a son. Matthew applies this virgin-birth prophesy to the birth of Jesus Christ. In chapter 2, Matthew references Micah 5:2, in which the birth city of the Messiah is named, again applying the prophecy to Jesus. In Matthew 3, the Bible writer notes that John the Baptizer was the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy in 40:3, indicating that John was the forerunner of the Messiah which, again, is Jesus Christ. Matthew 4:15-16 references another Messianic prophecy that discusses the land of Zebulun and Naphtali, again applying the prophecy to Jesus Christ. Looking, then, at the first four chapters of the book of Matthew, one is forcefully struck with the fact that one of the Bible writer’s primary apologetic tools used to confirm that Jesus was (and is) the Messiah was a fervent appeal to Messianic prophecy as fulfilled in the life and actions of Jesus. Furthermore, Matthew’s pattern of applying Old Testament, Messianic prophecy to Jesus continues throughout the remainder of his account.

Mark’s gospel account, although not as replete with such prophecies, nevertheless includes appeals to Messianic prophecy and applies those prophecies to Jesus. Mark chapter 1 begins with quotations from Malachi 3 and Isaiah 40 that predict the forerunner of the Messiah. Mark applied these passages to John the Baptizer as the forerunner of Jesus Christ. Furthermore, during the crucifixion account as recorded in Mark, the Bible writer noted that Jesus was crucified between two thieves, and then he commented, “So the Scripture was fulfilled which says, ‘And He was numbered with the transgressors’ ” (15:28). In addition, Mark included instances in which Jesus applied Messianic prophecy to Himself.

As with Matthew and Mark, Luke and John also included numerous Messianic prophecies and appeal to them as proof of the deity of Jesus Christ. Luke chapter three cites the prophecy from Isaiah 40 concerning the Messianic forerunner and applies it to John the Baptizer, the forerunner of Christ. John does the same in 1:23. During Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem, John records that Jesus rode into the city sitting on a donkey. John then commented on the situation by saying: “as it is written: Fear not, daughter of Zion; behold, your King is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt.” His reference was a clear appeal to the Messianic nature of this prophecy found in Zechariah 9:9. Again, in John 12:37-38, the Bible writer refers to a Messianic prophecy in Isaiah 53:1, and applies its fulfillment to the ministry of Jesus. During the crucifixion of Christ, John records that the soldiers cast lots for Jesus’ clothing. John then references Psalm 22:18 as a Messianic prophecy: “They divided My garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.”

Only a few of the many Messianic prophetic references in the gospel accounts have been documented here. Yet, even with this small sampling, the reader is struck with the clear conclusion that the gospel writers appealed to Old Testament, Messianic prophecy as proof of the deity of Christ.

Jesus’ Appeal to Prophecy as it Applied to Him

On multiply occasions, Jesus directed His listeners to certain Messianic Old Testament scriptures, and applied those scriptures to Himself. Luke records an incident in the life of Jesus in which He visited a synagogue on the Sabbath in His hometown of Nazareth. While in attendance there, Jesus read a passage from Isaiah 61:1-2, and commented to those in attendance that the particular Scripture He had just read was fulfilled in their hearing.

During His arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus addressed those who had come to arrest Him, asking them why they did not apprehend Him while He was with them daily teaching in the temple. He then stated: “But the Scriptures must be fulfilled” (Mark 14:49). His statement implied that this deed they were doing was a fulfillment of Old Testament Scriptures as they related to His Messianic role.

Again, in Luke 24, the resurrected Jesus appeared to two of His disciples on the road to Emmaus. They treated Him as a stranger, because they did not recognize Him. Upon striking up a conversation with Jesus, they began to discuss the events of Christ’s death and burial in Jerusalem only a few days earlier. After the disciples related the events of the women at the empty tomb, Jesus began to speak to them with these words: “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory” (Luke 24:25-26). The verse following Jesus’ statement explains: “And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.”

A few verses later, in the same chapter, Jesus appeared to several more of His disciples and applied the Old Testament prophecies to His activities again: “Then He said to them, ‘These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all the things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me” (Luke 24:44). Such statements made by Jesus show that one of the main lines of evidence that He used to establish His identity as the Messiah was the application of Old Testament Messianic prophecy to Himself.

Messianic Prophecy Applied to Jesus in the Book of Acts

The recorded writings and sermons of the apostles after the ascension of Jesus are replete with appeals to Messianic prophecy as proof of the Messianic identity of Jesus Christ. In the first recorded gospel sermon on the Day of Pentecost, Peter explained to those in Jerusalem that the resurrection of Christ was a fulfillment of the Messianic prophecy uttered by David in Psalm 16:8-11 (in which the Lord would not allow His Holy One to see corruption). In Act 3, Peter addressed another multitude of those dwelling in Jerusalem. In his sermon, he stated: “But those things which God foretold by the mouth of all His prophets, that Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled” (vs. 18). In that same sermon, Peter referred his audience back to Deuteronomy 18, in which Moses had foretold the coming of a prophet like himself, which Peter applied to Jesus (as did Stephen in his sermon in Acts 7:37). In the next chapter, Peter is arrested and allowed to speak to the high priest and his family. In Peter’s statements to these leaders, he again referred back to the Old Testament, quoted Psalm 118:22 about the stone that was rejected by the builders, and applied the prophecy to Jesus.

In one of the most memorable conversion accounts, Philip the evangelist is called to meet with an Ethiopian treasurer on the road to Gaza. As Philip approached, the Eunuch was reading a passage from Isaiah 53. Upon their meeting, the Eunuch asked Philip about the prophecy, wondering whether the prophet was speaking of himself or someone else. From that text, the Bible says that Philip preached Jesus to the Eunuch, applying the passage from Isaiah as a Messianic prophecy with its fulfillment in the person of Christ (Acts 8:26-40). In another memorable conversion account, Peter visited the house of Cornelius and preached the Gospel to him and all his household. Included in Peter’s message was the following statement concerning Jesus: “To Him all the prophets witness, that through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins” (Acts 10:43, emp. added).

As one continues through the book of Acts, it becomes evident that Paul often appealed to prophecy as evidence of Christ’s deity. In Acts 13, while preaching to those in the synagogue in Antioch of Pisidia, he commented that those responsible for killing Jesus did so because they did not know “the voices of the Prophets which are read every Sabbath” (Acts 13:27). In the same verse he concluded that because of their ignorance of the prophetic message, the murderers of Christ actually fulfilled the prophecies concerning Jesus in their abuse of Him. Paul further quoted from Psalm 2:7, Isaiah 55:3, and Psalm 16:10, noting these Old Testament passages as Messianic prophecy and applying them to Jesus Christ. In a separate sermon, delivered much later, Paul stood before King Agrippa and told him that Jesus is the Christ. In his oratory to Agrippa, Paul acknowledged that the king was “expert in all customs and questions which have to do with the Jews” (Acts 26:3). Paul further noted that in his teachings concerning Jesus as the Messiah, he was saying to Agrippa “no other things than those which the prophets and Moses said would come” (26:22). In his concluding remarks, Paul said to the king, “King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do believe.” Agrippa responded to Paul with these words: “You almost persuade me to become a Christian” (Acts 26:27-28).

Examples of Messianic prophecy applied to Jesus by the early propagators of Christianity as recorded in the book of Acts could easily be multiplied further. These few instances suffice to establish the fact that, throughout the book of Acts, predictive prophecy as it applied to Jesus as the Messiah stood as one of the foundational pillars upon which Christianity was based and spread.

Messianic Prophecy Applied to Jesus in the Epistles

Without providing an exhaustive study of every instance of Old Testament prophecy applied to Jesus in the epistles, this brief section will provide enough examples to establish the fact that the epistles, in similar fashion to the other books of the New Testament, rely heavily upon Messianic prophecy to establish the deity of Jesus Christ.

The book of Romans begins with a section discussing the Gospel of God, “which He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh…” (1:2-3). In the book of Galatians, Paul refers back to the promise made to Abraham, that through the seed of the patriarch all nations would be blessed. Paul then applies that promise to Jesus, stating that Jesus is the Seed of Abraham through whom the world would receive the blessing of Abraham (Galatians 3:15-18). The writer of the book of Hebrews opens his book discussing the merits of Christ, applying many Old Testament passages such as Psalm 2:7 and Psalm 110:1 to Jesus. In Hebrews 5, the writer argues the case that Jesus is a priest after the order or Melchizedek as prophesied in Psalm 110:4. He repeats these sentiments in 7:17 and 7:21.

The epistles of 1 and 2 Peter contain numerous examples of such prophetic application to Jesus. One of the most potent passages along these lines in found in 1 Peter 1:10-12, in which Peter wrote:

Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things which angels desire to look into.

In 1 Peter 2:6, the apostle applies Isaiah 28:16 and Psalm 118:22 to Christ, describing Him as the chief cornerstone rejected by the builders. Again in 1 Peter 2:22, the apostle applies Isaiah 53:9 to Jesus, referring to the fact that the Messiah would be sinless as was Jesus.

It becomes readily obvious, then, that the New Testament writers and apostles frequently referred to Old Testament, Messianic prophecy and applied the fulfillment of such prophecies to the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. It is impossible to deny that one of the main lines of reasoning upon which the Christian faith was founded from its inception is the idea that Jesus Christ fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies that looked forward to a coming Messiah.

CONCLUSION

In the Old Testament, it is almost as if we have a satellite picture from space of the Messiah many thousands of miles away, yet with each new prophecy, the picture continues to move nearer, until at last we are able to view a complete close-up of the Messiah—Jesus Christ. As the distinguished Hebrew scholar Charles Briggs noted: “In Jesus of Nazareth the key of the Messianic prophecy of the Old Testament has been found. All its phases find their realization in His unique personality, in His unique work, and in His unique kingdom. The Messiah of prophecy appears in the Messiah of history” (1988, p. 498).

In Acts 8:26-40, Philip the evangelist approached the Ethiopian who was riding in a chariot reading the Old Testament Scriptures. As Philip approached, he heard the man reading a section from Isaiah 53 in which the sufferings of the Messiah are depicted. Upon entering into a conversation with Philip, the man asked Philip, “[O]f whom does the prophet say this, of himself or of some other man?” Immediately after this question, the Bible says that Philip “opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him” (Acts 8:35). In truth, Jesus is the sum total of every Old Testament, Messianic prophecy ever uttered. From any single one of those ancient Scriptures, the honest, informed individual could open his or her mouth and preach Jesus, the Messiah.

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Preparing for Trinity Sunday

It is a celebration of Christian doctrine and lasts one day, but we can make time to honor God all year long. Here are ways to prepare the heart, mind and spirit for Trinity Sunday.
Preparing for Trinity Sunday

It is a celebration that looks at the Christian doctrine and lasts one day, but we can make time to honor God all year long. “The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity” is a time to worship God, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Not many are aware that this day is honored the Sunday after Pentecost. The Catholic Church explained that believers are “baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: not in their names.” There is only one God, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Rev. William G. Most wrote in The Basic Catholic Catechism and as shared on Global Catholic Network that the Trinity is a mystery.

Why? We only worship one God, not the three in the trinity. “Even though the Three Persons are One God, yet they are distinct: for the Father has no origin, He came from no one. But the Son is begotten–He comes from the Father alone. The Holy Spirit comes or proceeds from both the Father and the Son. These different relations of origin tell us there are three distinct Persons, who have one and the same divine nature.” Here are ways to prepare for “The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity.”

Family

Share this time with family to worship and study the word of God. Worship God, the Holy Spirit, and the Son of God. In Psalms 73: “Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” Let this be a time to prepare the heart, and seek forgiveness Him. Find scriptures on the Holy Trinity and share them with each other. Also go to confession and be open to correction. It might sting, but it is worth it.

Food

Bring the family together and use recipes that can lead a discussion about the Trinity. Different recipes or food can be the inspiration for family discussion about the Trinity. There is a great article on Catholic Culture on this by Jennifer Gregory Miller. And it looks like fun! Use Cloverleaf rolls, Neapolitan ice cream, triple chocolate, triple ice cream, and three cheese macaroni and cheese. Yes, it is food, but you can talk with kids about what the symbols of what  the Trinity means.

Community

Make a decision to put relationships first. Invite people over, and serve them with the heart of God. Share the love of Christ today. Get involved in the community, not only for this Sunday, but every day. Make a list of what you can do for others. It can be as simple as taking someone to church. Get going for others and for God. “May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus, (Romans 15:5-7).”

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Future predictions of Returning of the Lord Jesus Christ

Future predictions of Returning of the Lord Jesus Christ

Editors Note: These Predictions may not be true and are just displayed for interesting information. ( Remember “Noone knows the date of Returning of the Lord Jesus Christ even not the Son (Jesus) , only the Father God Elohim )

Predicted date Claimant Notes
2020 Jeane Dixon The alleged psychic claimed that Armageddon would take place in 2020 and Jesus would return to defeat the unholy Trinity of the Antichrist, Satan and the False prophet between 2020 and 2037.[35]
2021 F. Kenton Beshore Beshore bases his prediction on the prior suggestion that Jesus could return in 1988, i.e., within one Biblical generation (40 years) of the founding of Israel in 1948. Beshore argues that the prediction was correct, but that the definition of a Biblical generation was incorrect and was actually 70–80 years, placing the Second Coming of Jesus between 2018 and 2028 and the Rapture by 2021 at the latest.[36]
2025 Alice A. Bailey In January 1946, the New Age Theosophical guru prophesied that Christ would return “sometime after AD 2025”[37]:530 (Theosophists identify “Christ” as being identical to a being they call Maitreya) to inaugurate the Age of Aquarius; thus, this event will be, according to Bailey, the New Age equivalent of the Christian concept of the Second Coming.[38]Alice A. Bailey stated that St. Germain is the manager of the executive council of the Christ (Like C.W. Leadbeater, Alice A. Bailey refers to St. Germain as the Master Rakoczi or the Master R. in her books.).;[37]:508 thus, according to Alice A. Bailey, St. Germain’s primary task is to prepare the way for the Second Coming.
By 2057 Frank J. Tipler In 1994, the physicist and intelligent design advocate Frank J. Tipler published a book called The Physics of Immortality in which he claimed to scientifically prove the existence of God as a consequence of what he calls the Omega Point Theory. In 2007, he published a sequel to “The Physics of Immortality” called The Physics of Christianity which applies the principles of the Omega Point Theory to the Christian religion. In this 2007 book, he asserts in the first chapter that the Second Coming of Christ will occur within 50 years, i.e., by 2057, and will be coincident with what futurist Ray Kurzweil calls the Singularity (which Kurzweil himself predicts will occur by 2045).[39]
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A Prayer for Strength

Have you ever needed supernatural strength to face a situation head-on, but not known what to pray? God is waiting and wants to offer us strength in time of need. Do not be afraid to pray and ask God for His strength to fall upon you! When you are weak, weary or unready to stand, and unsure of what to ask, pray along with these words! 

Lord, I’m weary. My energy is sagging, and my motivation is lagging. And I am so in need of you. I need your strength and your fresh touch to get back on track again. Your Word says the joy of the Lord is my strength. If that’s true, then I need your joy to replace all the bone-tired parts of my mind, body, and soul.

The pressures of life sometimes push me into a corner, rendering me helpless to move forward. A hundred voices call my name, and I feel paralyzed at times to answer, not knowing where to turn. Lord, help me not to quit, to keep running the race faithfully, and to find strength in that safe, secret place of yours, under the shadow of the Almighty.

I need your strength to say no when I’m tempted to surrender to harmful things, or when selfishness clings to my clothes and won’t let go. I need your strength to say yes, when cowardice and fear nudge me to deny the convictions of my heart. I need your strength to reach out in love to those both close to me and all around me. When don’t I need your strength, God?

You are my rock, and I run to you today, believing that you will lift up my heavy arms, that you will fuel me for the tasks you’ve given me, and that your joy will completely consume the weakness of my life and make me strong again. I don’t want to stay grounded, crippled by limitations and failed attempts. I’m tired of feeble efforts. Lord, I want to mount up with wings like an eagle and not just fly. I want to soar.

Renew my strength, Lord. Fill me with your supernatural power to overcome each obstacle in my path. With my eyes on you, Lord, with you walking beside me, working through me, I can make it. Thank you, Lord!

In Jesus’s name, Amen

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A Prayer for Healing – Healing Prayer

A Prayer for Healing

Are you facing a difficult disease, illness or malady and want to cry out to God for healing but don’t know what to pray? If you feel scared, alone, unsure of the future, or don’t understand how healing works, pray these words below in faith today! Below is a prayer for healing, an interview with Max Lucado explaining how we should pray for healing, and some of our favorite Bible verses on healing.

God tells us that through prayer, He can speak to us and use us to work miracles for His glory. When you use this prayer for healing you are coming to God completely surrendered and expectant to let His Holy Spirit work in and through you. I pray that you will find miraculous healing as you seek God’s plan for your life – His plan to prosper you and to give you a hope and future!

God, you know me so well. You created me. You know the number of hairs on my head, and you even know the thoughts conceived in my heart before I ever vocalize them. You’ve told us to come to you and ask for every need of life. You are Jehovah-Rapha, the God who heals, and you have the final word on my destiny, the number of years I’ll live and serve you on earth.

I’m coming to you today as your child, longing to hear from you and asking for your divine healing. There’s so much I don’t understand about life. But I do know that with one touch, one word, you can make me whole. Please forgive me of my sins, cleanse me of my unrighteousness, and begin your healing from the inside out.

I don’t always know what your will is Lord, especially in times like now, when I desperately seek your face. I offer you no promises, no bargains, no deals to exchange for my health. I simply bow my heart before you to tell you the desire of my heart: that I want to spend as many years as I can loving you here, loving others, and wanting to become more like you. However you choose to accomplish that is up to you—and okay with me. If you use doctors to provide healing, give them wisdom to know what to do. Regardless of how you accomplish it, the healing you give is always miraculous. And you deserve all the praise.

I absolutely believe you have the power to heal. You demonstrated that on earth, and you still heal in miraculous ways today. Even when my faith is weak, you say it is enough, and my love for you is strong. And I know you already hold my heart and life in your hands. It’s up to you. If I can bring you more glory through healing, then that’s what I ask for. That’s what I desire.

But if your answer is no, or not now, I know that your grace is sufficient for me. Ultimately, I want your will to be my will. I look forward to spending an eternity with you. But Lord, if you have planned still more for me to do here on this earth, I not only need and want your physical healing, Lord, but a thorough, deep-down cleansing and strengthening—a whole-hearted renewal of all that I am. Because all that I am is yours. Use this trial to strengthen me from a “what-if” faith to a “no-matter-what” faith. And no matter what, I choose to honor you and give you glory.

In Jesus’s name, Amen.

What are you praying for healing over today? Join our large praying community in the comments below and experience the power, hope and healing that comes when you allow others to cover you in prayer.

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10 Morning Prayers to Use Daily – Here are 10 helpful morning prayers to start your day

A morning prayer is a wonderful way to focus your time and attention on seeking God’s plan for the day ahead. Whether you need encouragement, peace, strength, or rest, God can meet you in a very real and present way when you come before Him with a humble heart. Seek God’s presence each morning before your energy and attention is pulled by all the tasks you have ahead.
Here are

10 helpful morning prayers to start your day:

1. “Lord, may nothing separate me from You today. Teach me how to choose only Your way today so each step will lead me closer to You. Help me walk by the Word and not my feelings. Help me to keep my heart pure and undivided. Protect me from my own careless thoughts, words, and actions. And keep me from being distracted by MY wants, MY desires, MY thoughts on how things should be. Help me to embrace what comes my way as an opportunity… rather than a personal inconvenience. And finally, help me to rest in the truth of Psalm 86:13, ‘Great is your love toward me.’ You already see the ways I will fall short and mess up. But right now, I consciously tuck Your whisper of absolute love for me into the deepest part of my heart. I recognize Your love for me is not based on my performance. You love me warts and all. That’s amazing. But what’s most amazing is that the Savior of the world would desire a few minutes with me this morning. Lord, help me to forever remember what a gift it is to sit with You like this. Amen.”
– Lysa Terkeurst

2.

“I have set the LORD always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” – Psalm 16:8

3. “Dear Lord, I don’t know who or what will cross my path today. But I do know that You are my Rock and my Fortress. You are my Shield and my Strong Tower. Help me to anchor myself to You today. Teach me how to stand strong in You and choose only Your way today. Help me walk by Your truth and not my feelings. Help me to embrace anything that comes my way as an opportunity to see You at work and as an opportunity to point others to You. Thank You that You love me and nothing can ever take that away from me! Even if I fail today and fall short, You whisper Your unconditional love deep into my soul and remind me that Your mercies are new every morning. That truly amazes me, Lord. Thank You for meeting with me today. Would You wake me again tomorrow with the same sweet whisper of Your love? I can’t wait to meet with You again. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”
– Wendy Blight

4. daily prayer for strength

“You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You.” Isaiah 26:3

5. “Lord, grant me tenacious winsome courage as I go through this day. When I am tempted to give up, help me to keep going. Grant me a cheerful spirit when things don’t go my way. And give me courage to do whatever needs to be done. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
– Dr. Ray Pritchard

“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

6. “Father, my heart is heavy. I feel like I have to carry the burden alone. Words like overwhelmed, distraught, exhausted seem to describe where I am. I am not sure how to let you carry my heavy load, so please show me how. Take it from me. Let me rest and be refreshed so that my heart won’t be so heavy in the morning. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”
– Ron Moore

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

7. “Dear Lord, help me remember what a difference it makes when I make time with You a priority in my morning. Awaken me in body and spirit each day with a desire to meet with You and to hear You speak words of affirmation, assurance and wisdom over my heart as I prepare to go into my day. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”
– Traci Miles

“If any of your lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” James 1:5

8. morning-prayer-flower

9. The prayer of Jabez: “Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, ‘Oh, that You would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let Your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.'” 1 Chronicles 4:10

10. “I got up early one morning
And rushed right into the day;
I had so much to accomplish
That I didn’t have time to pray.
Problems just tumbled about me,
And heavier came each task;
‘Why doesn’t God help me?’ I wondered.
He answered, ‘You didn’t ask.’
I wanted to see joy and beauty
But the day toiled on gray and bleak
I wondered why God didn’t show me
He said, ‘But you didn’t seek’,
I tried to come into God’s presence;
I used all my keys in the lock.
God gently and lovingly chided,
‘My child, you didn’t knock.’
I woke up early this morning,
And paused before entering the day;
I had so much to accomplish
That I had to take time to pray.”
-Author Unknown

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Christian Prayer Requests

Post your Prayer Requests Here!

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What Does the Bible Really Teach? Who Is Jesus Christ?

What Does the Bible Really Teach? Who Is Jesus Christ?

What is Jesus’ special role?
Where did he come from?
What kind of person was he?

1, 2. (a) Why does knowing about someone famous not mean that you truly know him? (b) What confusion is there about Jesus?

THERE are many famous people in the world. Some are well-known in their own community, city, or country. Others are known worldwide. However, just knowing the name of someone famous does not mean that you truly know him. It does not mean that you know details about his background and what he is really like as a person.

2 People around the world have heard something about Jesus Christ, even though he lived on earth some 2,000 years ago. Yet, many are confused about who Jesus really was. Some say that he was merely a good man. Others claim that he was nothing more than a prophet. Still others believe that Jesus is God and should be worshipped. Should he?

3. Why is it important for you to know Jehovah God and Jesus Christ?

3 It is important for you to know the truth about Jesus. Why? Because the Bible says: “This means everlasting life, their coming to know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ.” (John 17:3) Yes, really coming to know Jehovah God and Jesus Christ can lead to everlasting life on a paradise earth. (John 14:6) Furthermore, Jesus sets the best example of how to live and how to treat others. (John 13:34, 35) In the first chapter of this book, we discussed the truth about God. Now let us consider what the Bible really teaches about Jesus Christ.
THE PROMISED MESSIAH

4. What do the titles “Messiah” and “Christ” mean?

4 Long before Jesus was born, the Bible foretold the coming of the one whom God would send as the Messiah, or Christ. The titles “Messiah” (from a Hebrew word) and “Christ” (from a Greek word) both mean “Anointed One.” This promised One would be anointed, that is, appointed by God to a special position. In later chapters of this book, we will learn more about the Messiah’s important place in the fulfillment of God’s promises. We will also learn about the blessings that Jesus can bring us even now. Before Jesus was born, however, many no doubt wondered, ‘Who will prove to be the Messiah?’

5. Of what were the disciples of Jesus fully convinced regarding him?

5 In the first century C.E., the disciples of Jesus of Nazareth were fully convinced that he was the foretold Messiah. (John 1:41) One of the disciples, a man named Simon Peter, openly said to Jesus: “You are the Christ.” (Matthew 16:16) How, though, could those disciples be sure—and how can we be sure—that Jesus really is the promised Messiah?

6. Illustrate how Jehovah has helped faithful ones to identify the Messiah.

6 The prophets of God who lived before Jesus foretold many details about the Messiah. These details would help others to identify him. We might illustrate things this way: Suppose you were asked to go to a busy bus depot or a train station or an airport to pick up someone you had never met before. Would it not help if someone gave you a few details about him? Similarly, by means of the Bible prophets, Jehovah gave a rather detailed description of what the Messiah would do and what he would experience. The fulfillment of these many prophecies would help faithful ones to identify him clearly.

7. What are two of the prophecies that were fulfilled in connection with Jesus?

7 Consider just two examples. First, over 700 years in advance, the prophet Micah foretold that the promised One would be born in Bethlehem, a small town in the land of Judah. (Micah 5:2) Where was Jesus actually born? Why, in that very town! (Matthew 2:1, 3-9) Second, many centuries in advance, the prophecy recorded at Daniel 9:25 pointed to the very year when the Messiah was to appear—29 C.E. * The fulfillment of these and other prophecies proves that Jesus was the promised Messiah.
At Jesus’ baptism, God’s spirit descending like a dove to identify Jesus as the Messiah

At his baptism, Jesus became the Messiah, or Christ

8, 9. What proof that Jesus was the Messiah became clear at his baptism?

8 Further proof that Jesus was the Messiah became clear near the end of 29 C.E. That is the year when Jesus went to John the Baptizer to be baptized in the Jordan River. Jehovah had promised John a sign so that he could identify the Messiah. John saw that sign at Jesus’ baptism. The Bible says that this is what happened: “After being baptized, Jesus immediately came up from the water; and look! the heavens were opened up, and he saw God’s spirit descending like a dove and coming upon him. Look! Also, a voice from the heavens said: ‘This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved.’” (Matthew 3:16, 17) After seeing and hearing what happened, John had no doubt that Jesus was sent by God. (John 1:32-34) At the moment when God’s spirit, or active force, was poured out upon him that day, Jesus became the Messiah, or Christ, the one appointed to be Leader and King.—Isaiah 55:4.

9 The fulfillment of Bible prophecy and Jehovah God’s own testimony plainly show that Jesus was the promised Messiah. But the Bible answers two other important questions about Jesus Christ: Where did he come from, and what kind of person was he?
WHERE DID JESUS COME FROM?

10. What does the Bible teach about Jesus’ existence before he came to earth?

10 The Bible teaches that Jesus lived in heaven before he came to earth. Micah prophesied that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem and also said that His origin was “from ancient times.” (Micah 5:2) On many occasions, Jesus himself said that he lived in heaven before being born as a human. (Read John 3:13; 6:38, 62; 17:4, 5) As a spirit creature in heaven, Jesus had a special relationship with Jehovah.

11. How does the Bible show that Jesus is Jehovah’s most precious Son?

11 Jesus is Jehovah’s most precious Son—and for good reason. He is called “the firstborn of all creation,” for he was God’s first creation. * (Colossians 1:15) There is something else that makes this Son special. He is the “only-begotten Son.” (John 3:16) This means that Jesus is the only one directly created by God. Jesus is also the only one whom God used when He created all other things. (Colossians 1:16) Then, too, Jesus is called “the Word.” (John 1:14) This tells us that he spoke for God, no doubt delivering messages and instructions to the Father’s other sons, both spirit and human.

12. How do we know that the firstborn Son is not equal to God?

12 Is the firstborn Son equal to God, as some believe? That is not what the Bible teaches. As we noted in the preceding paragraph, the Son was created. Obviously, then, he had a beginning, whereas Jehovah God has no beginning or end. (Psalm 90:2) The only-begotten Son never even considered trying to be equal to his Father. The Bible clearly teaches that the Father is greater than the Son. (Read John 14:28; 1 Corinthians 11:3) Jehovah alone is “God Almighty.” (Genesis 17:1) Therefore, he has no equal. *

13. What does the Bible mean when it refers to the Son as “the image of the invisible God”?

13 Jehovah and his firstborn Son enjoyed close association for billions of years—long before the starry heavens and the earth were created. How they must have loved each other! (John 3:35; 14:31) This dear Son was just like his Father. That is why the Bible refers to the Son as “the image of the invisible God.” (Colossians 1:15) Yes, even as a human son may closely resemble his father in various ways, this heavenly Son reflected his Father’s qualities and personality.

14. How did Jehovah’s only-begotten Son come to be born as a human?

14 Jehovah’s only-begotten Son willingly left heaven and came down to earth to live as a human. But you may wonder, ‘How was it possible for a spirit creature to be born as a human?’ To accomplish this, Jehovah performed a miracle. He transferred the life of his firstborn Son from heaven to the womb of a Jewish virgin named Mary. No human father was involved. Mary thus gave birth to a perfect son and named him Jesus.—Luke 1:30-35.
WHAT KIND OF PERSON WAS JESUS?
Jesus preaching to people in a home

15. Why can we say that through Jesus we come to know Jehovah better?

15 What Jesus said and did while on earth helps us to get to know him well. More than that, through Jesus we come to know Jehovah better. Why is this the case? Recall that this Son is a perfect reflection of his Father. That is why Jesus told one of his disciples: “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father also.” (John 14:9) The four Bible books known as the Gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—tell us much about the life, activity, and personal qualities of Jesus Christ.

16. What was Jesus’ primary message, and where did his teachings come from?

16 Jesus was well-known as “Teacher.” (John 1:38; 13:13) What did he teach? Primarily, his message was “the good news of the Kingdom”—that is, God’s Kingdom, the heavenly government that will rule over the entire earth and will bring endless blessings to obedient humans. (Matthew 4:23) Whose message was this? Jesus himself said: “What I teach is not mine, but belongs to him who sent me,” namely, Jehovah. (John 7:16) Jesus knew that his Father wants humans to hear about the good news of the Kingdom. In Chapter 8, we will learn more about God’s Kingdom and what it will accomplish.
Jesus preaching to a fisherman

17. Where did Jesus do his teaching, and why did he go to great lengths to teach others?

17 Where did Jesus do his teaching? Everywhere he found people—in the countryside as well as in cities, in villages, in marketplaces, and in their homes. Jesus did not expect people to come to him. He went to them. (Mark 6:56; Luke 19:5, 6) Why did Jesus go to such lengths and spend so much of his time preaching and teaching? Because doing so was God’s will for him. Jesus always did his Father’s will. (John 8:28, 29) But there was another reason why he preached. He felt compassion for the crowds of people who came out to see him. (Read Matthew 9:35, 36.) They were neglected by their religious leaders, who should have been teaching them the truth about God and his purposes. Jesus knew how much the people needed to hear the Kingdom message.

18. What qualities of Jesus do you find most appealing?

18 Jesus was a man of tender warmth and deep feelings. Others thus found him to be approachable and kind. Even children felt at ease with him. (Mark 10:13-16) Jesus was impartial. He hated corruption and injustice. (Matthew 21:12, 13) At a time when women received little respect and had few privileges, he treated them with dignity. (John 4:9, 27) Jesus was genuinely humble. On one occasion, he washed the feet of his apostles, a service usually performed by a lowly servant.
Jesus reaching out to touch and heal the sick

Jesus preached wherever he found people

19. What example shows that Jesus was sensitive to the needs of others?

19 Jesus was sensitive to the needs of others. This was especially evident when, under the power of God’s spirit, he performed miracles of healing. (Matthew 14:14) For example, a man with leprosy came to Jesus and said: “If you just want to, you can make me clean.” Jesus personally felt this man’s pain and suffering. Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched the man, saying: “I want to! Be made clean.” And the sick man was healed! (Mark 1:40-42) Can you imagine how that man must have felt?
FAITHFUL TO THE END

20, 21. How did Jesus set an example of loyal obedience to God?

20 Jesus set the finest example of loyal obedience to God. He remained faithful to his heavenly Father under all kinds of circumstances and despite all types of opposition and suffering. Jesus firmly and successfully resisted Satan’s temptations. (Matthew 4:1-11) At one time, some of Jesus’ own relatives did not put faith in him, even saying that he was “out of his mind.” (Mark 3:21) But Jesus did not let them influence him; he kept right on doing God’s work. Despite insults and abuse, Jesus maintained self-control, never trying to harm his opposers.—1 Peter 2:21-23.

21 Jesus remained faithful until death—a cruel and painful death at the hands of his enemies. (Read Philippians 2:8.) Consider what he endured on the last day of his life as a human. He was arrested, accused by false witnesses, convicted by corrupt judges, laughed at by mobs, and tortured by soldiers. Nailed to a stake, he took his last breath, crying out: “It has been accomplished!” (John 19:30) However, on the third day after Jesus died, his heavenly Father resurrected him back to spirit life. (1 Peter 3:18) A few weeks later, he returned to heaven. There, he “sat down at the right hand of God” and waited to receive kingly power.—Hebrews 10:12, 13.

22. What did Jesus accomplish by remaining faithful until death?

22 What did Jesus accomplish by remaining faithful until death? Jesus’ death actually opens to us the opportunity for eternal life on a paradise earth, in harmony with Jehovah’s original purpose. How Jesus’ death makes that possible will be discussed in the next chapter.

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Why True Christians Do Not Use the Cross in Worship

THE cross is loved and respected by millions of people. The Encyclopædia Britannica calls the cross “the principal symbol of the Christian religion.” Nevertheless, true Christians do not use the cross in worship. Why not?

An important reason is that Jesus Christ did not die on a cross. The Greek word generally translated “cross” is stau·rosʹ. It basically means “an upright pale or stake.” The Companion Bible points out: “[Stau·rosʹ] never means two pieces of timber placed across one another at any angle . . . There is nothing in the Greek of the [New Testament] even to imply two pieces of timber.”

In several texts, Bible writers use another word for the instrument of Jesus’ death. It is the Greek word xyʹlon. (Acts 5:30; 10:39; 13:29; Galatians 3:13; 1 Peter 2:24) This word simply means “timber” or “a stick, club, or tree.”

Explaining why a simple stake was often used for executions, the book Das Kreuz und die Kreuzigung (The Cross and the Crucifixion), by Hermann Fulda, states: “Trees were not everywhere available at the places chosen for public execution. So a simple beam was sunk into the ground. On this the outlaws, with hands raised upward and often also with their feet, were bound or nailed.”

The most convincing proof of all, however, comes from God’s Word. The apostle Paul says: “Christ purchased us, releasing us from the curse of the Law by becoming a curse instead of us, because it is written: ‘Accursed is every man hung upon a stake [“a tree,” King James Version].’” (Galatians 3:13) Here Paul quotes Deuteronomy 21:22, 23, which clearly refers to a stake, not a cross. Since such a means of execution made the person “a curse,” it would not be proper for Christians to decorate their homes with images of Christ on a cross.

There is no evidence that for the first 300 years after Christ’s death, those claiming to be Christians used the cross in worship. In the fourth century, however, pagan Emperor Constantine became a convert to apostate Christianity and promoted the cross as its symbol. Whatever Constantine’s motives, the cross had nothing to do with Jesus Christ. The cross is, in fact, pagan in origin. The New Catholic Encyclopedia admits: “The cross is found in both pre-Christian and non-Christian cultures.” Various other authorities have linked the cross with nature worship and pagan sex rites.

Why, then, was this pagan symbol promoted? Apparently, to make it easier for pagans to accept “Christianity.” Nevertheless, devotion to any pagan symbol is clearly condemned by the Bible. (2 Corinthians 6:14-18) The Scriptures also forbid all forms of idolatry. (Exodus 20:4, 5; 1 Corinthians 10:14) With very good reason, therefore, true Christians do not use the cross in worship. *

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Receive from God His Presence and Power.How to Pray for Your own needs

Lord Jesus,

I worship Your Light of Glory and Your Power. I want to mount up like an eagle and experience the high places of the Spirit. When I worship You in this Secret Place of the most high with silent whispers. I know that Your presence is in this place. I seek for Your personality Father. I seek and I mount up to the high places of the Spirit. You are Holy. Angels cry Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord. You are Holy and worthy to take honor and praise and thankfulness and glory and all the riches. Father release Your blessed presence all over this place. Send Your Angels of light over this place. According to Your Will. Let Your blessed presence flow in this place with the rivers of Anointing of the Holy Spirit. Let me rise into high places of the Spirit, where I renew my strenght in the presence of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus You have said in Your word, that we must come to this place called asking round and ask and receive and all this is given to us in the Holy of Holiest, where words are so few, but the heart is full with Love and Holy Spirit prays inside of us secrets towards God.

And now I ask You Jesus, that You will grant me, according to the riches and Your Glory, that I might be strengthened by Your Holy Spirit in the inner man. I receive it now. I pray that you would fullfill all my needs and deliver me from the evil ways for Your Glorious name sake. I want to rest in You Jesus and I release all my burdens I am carrying on the Cross and take burden of Jesus. For Your yoke is easy, and Your burden is light.

I come to the knocking round and pray with intensivity, that You would heal me through Your stripes, through Your Holy Blood and by the Power of the Sprit, because Spirit is Truth.

I want to experience Your presence every day of my life. Jesus you carried our curses on the Cross that I might have the Blessing and the Blessing of Abraham. I receive this blessing and throw my curses on the Cross. I believe Jesus that you want to give me all, healt, material needs, Gifts of the Holy Spirit, ministry and empower my prayer work. I pray that my foundation in built on a rock – to Jesus, Word of God and the Holy Spirit. I pray that You would bring the Sword of God against the satan’s plans and deeds in my life. I thank You and worship You with all my heart. I give praise and honor to Your name. For you are Holy. And when I say Holy I belive that this concludes the whole totality of God, all His attributes. You are Holy Lord. Holy, Holy, Holy. I worship You in the Spirit and in the Truth, I make my body as a living sacrifice.

I pray that I might be filled with fullness of God and I receive it. I thank You and worship You for the Healing and I receive it in the Faith. I thank and receive everything You want to give me according to Your Will. I receive life and there is no death in my way. I have set my Love upon thee Lord and I receive all the related blessings and promises. I thank You and worship You that I have tried You with the tithe and I receive from the heaven all the material blessings and blessings You want to give me. I thank You and I praise You that You will bless me, that what You have blessed You take not back.

I receive in Your Name Jesus all material and heavenly things that belong to me in Jesus Christ. I thank You and I worship You and seek Your Face and Presence Father. Father, through the Holy Spirit I seek Your knowledge and Your ways. I seek You for who You are. I seek Your presence – Your Personality – Perfection. I pray that these Spiritual prayers would manifest mightily in my life in Jesus Holy Name I pray. Amen.

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Blood of Jesus Bible Scriptures.Prayer-Power in the Blood of Jesus

Through these Bible Scriptures I testify what the Blood of Jesus does for me under the Authority of the Word of God, Bible

 

Through the Blood of Jesus, I am redeemed out of the and of the devil.

Rev 12:11- “they (the believers on earth) overcame him (satan) by the blood of the Lamb (Jesus Christ), and by the word of their testimony.” (That is, they testified to what the Word of God says about the blood of Jesus.)

Psalms 107:2 – “Let the Redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.”

Through the Blood of Jesus, All my sins have been forgiven.

Ephesians 1: 7 – “In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.”

The Blood of Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Continually Cleanses Me from all Sin.

I John 1:7 – “But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanseth us from all sin.”

Through the Blood of Jesus, I am justified, made righteous, just as if i’d never sinned.

Romans 5:9 – “Much more than, now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.”

Through the Blood of Jesus I am sanctified, made Holy, set apart to God.

Hebrews 13:12 – “Wherefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered without the gate.”

My body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, redeemed, cleansed by the Blood of Jesus.

I Corinthians 6:19-20 – “What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, which is in you. which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price; Therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

Satan has no more place in me, no more Power over me, through the Blood of Jesus.

Bible scriptures for the Derek Prince Blood of Jesus Prayer.

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Video – Jesus Tomb is Empty, Jesus is Resurrected Video, Resurrection of Jesus

Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained. John 20:19-23 King James Version (KJV)
 

 

Empty tomb of Jesus – John 20 – King James Version (KJV)

 
20 The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre.

2 Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.

3 Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, and came to the sepulchre.

4 So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre.

5 And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in.

6 Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie,

7 And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself.

8 Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed.

9 For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead.

10 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.

11 But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre,

12 And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.

13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.

14 And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.

15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.

16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.

17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

18 Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her.

19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

20 And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.

21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.

25 The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.

26 And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.

27 Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.

29 Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.

30 And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book:

31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

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Jesus Last Supper Video and the Bread of Life – Jesus of Nazareth

And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. John 6:35, John 6:51 King James Version (KJV)
 
For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come. And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you. Luke 22:7-23 King James Version (KJV)
 
26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” 27 Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29 I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in my Father’s kingdom.” 30 When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. Matthew 26:26-30 King James Version (KJV)
 

 

Events Surrounding the Last Supper

 
Before we begin to look more closely at the partaking of the Passover, let us pause for just a moment to remind ourselves of the broader setting in which this event is found. The Jewish religious leaders in Jerusalem have already determined that Jesus must die (not to mention Lazarus, John 11:47-53; 12:9-10).After the meal at the house of Simon the Leper, at which Mary anointed the feet of Jesus, “wasting” her expensive perfume on him, Judas decided to betray the Lord, approached the chief priests, and received an advance payment (Matthew 26:14-16; Luke 22:1-6). Jesus made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem, and after He cleansed the temple, the sparks really began to fly, with the religious leaders making every effort to discredit Him, or to get Him into trouble with the Roman authorities (Luke 20:19-20). When these efforts, as well as their attempts to penetrate the ranks of our Lord’s disciples miserably failed, the chief priests were delighted to have Judas approach them with his offer. It was only a matter now of waiting for the right chance. This could have been the Lord’s celebration of the Passover, along with His disciples.
 
At the meal itself, a number of events took place. It would seem that the Lord’s washing of the feet of the disciples was the first item on the agenda (John 13:1-20). During the meal, once (cf. Matthew 26:20-25; Mark 14:17-21), if not more (Luke 22:21-23), the Lord spoke of His betrayer. The meal seems to have included some (perhaps most all) of the traditional Passover elements, and in addition, the commencement of the Lord’s Supper, with words that I doubt the disciples had ever heard at a Passover meal (Luke 22:19-20). John’s gospel avoids giving us yet another description of this ceremony. He, unlike the other gospel writers, includes an extensive message known as the “upper room discourse” (John 14-16), concluded by the Lord’s “high priestly prayer” of intercession for His followers, which may have been prayed during the meal time, or perhaps later on in Gethsemane (John 17). The synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) report the disciples’ argument about who would be the greatest, along with our Lord’s response (cf. Luke 22:24-3), the Lord’s specific words to the over-confident Peter (Luke 22:31-34), and then His words about being prepared to face a hostile world (Luke 22:35-38). With this the party is said to have sung a hymn and to have departed to the Garden of Gethsemane, where our Lord prayed, with little help from His disciples (Luke 22:39-46). The arrest of Jesus then follows, concluding in His being handed over for crucifixion.
 
The point in all of this is simply to remind you that the meal was a lengthy one, during which time the Passover was memorialized, and also the Lord’s Supper was inaugurated. It was also during this time that a great deal of teaching took place, as recorded primarily by John. The so-called “Last Supper” was but a part of a larger whole.
 

John 6 Jesus – The Bread of Life

 
4 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.

46 Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.

47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.

48 I am that bread of life.

49 Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.

50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.

51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?

53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.

54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.

55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.

56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.

57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.

58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.

59 These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum.

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Birth on Jesus Video and Baptism of Jesus by John Video

Birth of the Jesus Video and the Baptism of the Jesus Video


And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus. Matthew 1:21-25 – King James Version (KJV)
 
Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented. As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on Him. 17And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.” Matthew 3 – King James Version (KJV)

 
With Matthew 3 we have the record of the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry with His baptism. With the exception of Luke’s account of the time Jesus was in the Temple at the age of 12 (Luke 2:41-50), the so-called “silent years” of Jesus are not looked into by the evangelists. They are clearly more interested in His public ministry. So after recording the various events related to His birth to show that He was unique, Matthew now jumps forward about 30 years to His baptism.
 
The first part of the chapter (vv. 1-12) tell us about John the Baptizer. Matthew describes John and explains that he was the one prophesied by Isaiah (40:3). If John was the forerunner, then of course Jesus is the Messiah, the one Isaiah described in that chapter as “your God” who will come as a “shepherd.”
 

John’s message was one of rebuke and warning. He called for people to repent before the “coming” of the Lord. People responded to his preaching and were baptized. Baptism, or ritual immersion as the Jews described it, was frequent in Israel. Jewish people immersed themselves in ritual baths before entering the holy place as a sign of inner purification. And the Jewish sect of Essenes in the desert at Qumran used ritual baths frequently to represent ritual purification. Converts to Judaism also would undergo such a ritual as part of their initiation into the faith. So “baptism,” as the gospels call it, was fairly common in the religious life of Israel. John, though, was pressing them with an urgency to repent before it was too late: “The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.” It was a warning for people to repent; and repentance meant a change of life, not just feeling sorry for wrongs done. To seal that repentance and commitment, John baptized them (meaning probably that he witnessed their immersion and said appropriate words to them, but probably did not touch them since that was never done).
 
But John announces that one greater than he was coming, who would baptize them with the Holy Spirit and with fire. There are a lot of interpretations offered for this prediction (as a survey of the commentaries will reveal), but I believe John is referring to the events that we know are connected with the first coming (the giving of the Spirit at Pentecost to baptize all believers into one body [1 Cor. 12:13]) and then with the second coming (a baptism of fire that he says will burn up the wicked). I know there were tongues of fire at Pentecost, but the context of John’s “fire” is the judgment with unquenchable fire. John was really an Old Testament prophet; he would not have known that centuries would pass between the two events. The Old Testament prophets would include in their oracles descriptions of both comings of Christ, as we now know them.
 
But be that as it may, John clearly knew that Jesus was this coming one, the one greater than he. The Gospel of John tells us that John the Baptist was told that the one on whom the Spirit would descend would be the one who would baptize people with the Holy Spirit–He would be the Son of God; He would be the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29-34).
 
Luke gives us the details of the time that John began his ministry (Luke 3:1): it was in the 15th year of the reign of Tiberias Caesar, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea. Scholars have settled on the year 29 A.D. for the beginning of John’s ministry. We would put the baptism of Jesus, then, sometime in the fall of 29 (and this correctly allows for the several Passovers [every spring] that occurred during Jesus’ public ministry from 30 to 33 A.D.). So Jesus’ public ministry began in the fall of 29; and he was crucified in the spring of 33 A.D.
 

Bible Scriptures of Baptism of Jesus by the John the Baptist

 

Matthew 3 King James Version (KJV)

 
3 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,

2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

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.

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.

5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,

6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.

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?

8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:

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.

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.

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:

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.

13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.

14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?

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.

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:

17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

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Video of Jesus teaching Nicodemus How to be Born Again

Jesus Teaches Nicodemus Video – How to be Born Again

 
Jesus Teaches Nicodemus How to be Born AgainThere was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.
 

 

John 3:4-36 – King James Version

 
4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?

5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?

10 Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?

11 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.

12 If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?

13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.

14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:

15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.

21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

22 After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized.

23 And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized.

24 For John was not yet cast into prison.

25 Then there arose a question between some of John’s disciples and the Jews about purifying.

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.

31 He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

32 And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony.

33 He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true.

34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.

35 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.

36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

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Scriptures from the Bible about Salvation through Jesus

1. All men are sinners:

Rom.3:23 – For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God
Eccl.7:20 – Not a just man on earth, that…sinneth not
Isa.64:6 – All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags
Rom.3:10 – There is none righteous, no not one
Jam.2:10 – Whoever shall offend in one point (of law), guilty of all
1Jn.1:8 – If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves

2. Salvation by grace (undeserved mercy), not works:

Eph.2:8,9 – For by grace are ye saved through faith, not of yourselves…not of works
Mk.10:25-27 – Who can be saved? With men it is impossible
Rom.3:20a – By deeds of law shall no flesh be justified in His sight
Rom.11:6 – And if by grace, then is it no more of works
Gal.2:16 – Justified by the faith of Christ and not by works of the law
2Tim.1:9 – Saved us, not according to our works, but according to His grace
Tit.3:5 – Not by works of righteousness which we have done

3. Salvation only through Jesus:

Acts 4:12 – None other name…whereby we must be saved
1Tim.2:5 – One mediator between God and men…Christ Jesus
Jn.3:16 – God…gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should…have everlasting life
Jn.3:36b – He that believeth not the Son shall not see life
Jn.8:24 – If ye believe not that I am He, ye shall die in your sins
Jn.10:1 – He that entereth not by the door…but climbeth up some other way…is a thief and a robber
Jn.10:9 – I am the door: by Me if any man enter in…be saved
Jn.14:6 – I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by Me
1Cor.3:11 – For other foundation can no man lay than… Jesus Christ
1Jn.5:12 – He that hath not the Son of God hath not life

4. Believe on Jesus:

Jn.3:16 – Whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life
Jn.11:25,26 – I am the resurrection and the life…whosoever believeth in Me shall never die
Acts 16:31 – Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved
Rom.10:9,10 – If thou shalt…believe in thine heart…thou shalt be saved
1Jn.5:1a – Whosoever believeth Jesus is the Christ is born of God

5. Receive Jesus:

Rev.3:20 – If any man…open the door, I will come in to him
Jn.1:12 – But as many as received Him…power to become sons
Gal.4:6 – God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your heart
Eph.3:17 – That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith

6. Eternal salvation:
A. You can never lose it, even if you make mistakes and fall:

Psa.37:24 – Though the fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with His hand
Jn.3:36a – He that believeth on the Son…hath everlasting life
Jn.6:37 – Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out
Jn.10:28 – I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand
Rom.8:38,39 – I am persuaded that [nothing] shall be able to separate us from the love of God…in Christ Jesus
1Cor.3:11-15 – [If works are] wood, hay and stubble…shall be burned, yet he himself shall be saved
1Cor.5:5 – Destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved
Heb.13:5b – I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee
2Tim.2:13 – Though we believe not, yet He abideth faithful
1Jn.5:13 – Ye may know that ye have eternal life

B. But the Lord will chasten you for wrongdoing:

Psa.89:30-34 – If they break My statutes…I will visit with the rod…(but) My lovingkindness will I not utterly take away
Heb.12:5-8 – Whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth
Rev.3:19 – As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten

7. Receiving Jesus guarantees eternal life in Heaven:

Rom.6:23b – The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ
Jn.11:26 – Whosoever…believeth in Me shall never die
Jn.14:2-3 – In My Father’s house are many mansions
1Pet.1:3,4 – Incorruptible inheritance reserved in Heaven for you
1Jn.5:11 – God hath given to us eternal life…in His Son
(See Rev.21:1-27 and 22:1-5 for a description of Heaven)

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