Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Day of Pentecost and Healing - part 2

by Michael C. Garrett

Hello everybody, welcome to Owensboro, Kentucky. Welcome to the Owens-boro Church of Jesus Christ. My name is Michael C. Garrett. I’m glad you’re here. And we’re glad that all you have come to join us. Some of you may do so within a few days of this article being posted. Some of you might be days or weeks, or months or even years from now when you happen upon it on your computer, tablet, or even cell phone. Understand, you can also research different topics by typing a topic into the search box on the top right of our home page. But we’re glad you’re here!

We here at the Owensboro Church of Jesus Christ – I guess we have a different take on religion. A lot of people who think of themselves as religious they think about their – I call it really a “social club” – when they go to their church building and under the roof of that church building they have their different get-togethers. Now sometimes they call it a “worship service,” they might even call it a “bible study,” sometimes they call it a “potluck” or a “bingo night” or different social situations. And I do believe that for many people church – when they use that word – is simply an opportunity for them to have a social gathering. Well, meeting with friends and family and fellow church members – there’s nothing wrong with that and it’s a good thing most of the time. But that’s not what church is all about. Church is to be a period of instruction, where all of us – when we go to the Bible – we learn about the Truth of God. We learn about the Way of God. We learn about the Plan of God. I have a feeling that a great many churches don’t spend a lot of time talking about the Plan of God. Oh, they have a vague notion of someday going off to Heaven. And I tell you, I don’t know whether to get aggravated or to feel sorry for people. But so often you hear about – you’ll hear people on television, such as President Donald Trump talking at a Medal of Honor ceremony in commemorating some soldier’s that died said, “…these were incredible, incredible men, and you could be proud that they were in your family. And they are looking down right now and they are very, very proud of you.” NO, THEY’RE NOT! They’re in their graves wherever those graves might be. And they just wait for the passage of time – now someday they will be brought back to life. And someday they will have the chance to learn the truth of God. But I know that it’s very common for people to say, “My mother’s up in Heaven,” or “Billy Graham is up in Heaven,” or whatever person they’re trying to idolize or fantasize about. And I hate to disrupt you, but no.

Several years ago I was asked by a friend and a colleague, to travel down to Arkansas to speak at a funeral. And the man was a long time member of the Church of God, and his wife had died, and he wanted me – he instructed me the night before the funeral at the funeral home at the wake, the visitation – he told me, “I want you to tell these people the truth of God! I want them to know that there is no “immortal soul.” He said, “I do not want my wife’s death to be in vain.” And so I got up during the funeral and did as he asked. And there was a man down in the middle, and his eyes burned with hatred for me. And I actually thought he was not far away from leaping up on the stage and trying to do me bodily harm. But, I found out later that this man, a few months before, had a son to die. Maybe eight or nine years old, a very tender age, a beautiful young child. And for some horrible reason – a disease or an accident; I don’t remember the details – but this young boy died. And this father had comforted himself all this time by knowing that his little baby boy was up in Heaven. And then to have me stand up on stage and to say something like, “UNLESS Jesus Christ and God the Father directly intervene there is no life after death,” no such thing as an “immortal soul.” And as tactfully as I knew how to say – quoting from the Word of God – I pointed out that when you die you go to your grave and you wait. Some will wait and hear the SEVENTH TRUMP and be resurrected, and some will wait in their graves for over a thousand years. But on some future occasion, they will be brought back to physical life to learn the truth of God and to have another chance at learning everything they didn’t get exposed to in their first lifetime. Now, all I was saying was what was in the Bible – I was quoting the Scriptures. It’s funny how people get so screwed up that they don’t even know – they don’t even understand – that all of their life they have been told a lie – about the Plan of God. We’re not going off to Heaven folks. Heaven, the throne of God – the city of God – New Jerusalem – the Headquarters of the Kingdom of God is sometime soon coming to the EARTH.

‘seek first the Kingdom from God’

We’re here today as a church service, and we here at the Owensboro Church of Jesus Christour emphasis is on the Word of God, on the Truth of God, and on understanding - better and better every week, every month, every year - the Plan of God – and in our particular interaction with the Plan of God. And, if that’s not the focus of your church I think you need to reconsider where you’re going to church and why you’re doing it.

Matthew 6:33 – in the so-called Sermon on the Mount, which is simply chocked full of spiritual wisdom and spiritual truth. Jesus said something profound and it is as profound as anything He ever said. It is as profound as anything you’re ever going to hear. And He said simply, “’ But seek first the Kingdom [from] God and His righteousness, …’” – the righteousness which comes from God. The righteousness which is shared with all of us from the throne of mercy and grace that God and Jesus poured out upon us through giving us a part of Their mind or Their Spirit. We, as human beings, are flawed creatures.

Now, I love my kitty cats – you’ve heard me talk about them before – but my kitty cats are flawed creatures. Especially when they jump, and they miss, and they land on me. And I have – on my body right now – about three or four different places where I can attest to the fact that my kitty cats don’t always land where they’re supposed to land. And they end up scratching me. Well, they don’t mean to – they’re not trying to – but they are flawed. They are not perfect. And we, as human beings, are flawed.

The very make-up of a human being – without the influence of God – is selfishness. The very basic understanding of human nature is selfishness. Viewing the world and your environment only through your eyes – and only basically for your service or by extension people who are a part of your circle like your family. Maybe very dear friends. But again, human nature is selfishness.

I once knew a teacher who used the phrase that human nature was a collection of vanity, jealousy, lust, and greed. He said that so many times I thought it was a biblical verse. And I said one day, “Well, I’m gonna find that Scripture” Well, it wasn’t in the Bible. Not one time did I find that in my Bible. Well, this teacher came up with that definition on his own Bible study and think time. And I think it was a very good definition. And I have simply concentrated it down one more step – human nature is selfishness. Thinking about self – that’s what most people do. How can they get ahead, how can they take care of themselves or their family!? It’s all about selfishness.

But we should have a different mentality. We should have a different approach. We should look at Matthew 6:33 and realize that we are to seek first – with our whole heart, our whole mind, our whole sense of being, our whole mind power – the Kingdom of God! First and foremost!

Now, folks, when you go to your church – and maybe they’re a Right-leaning church, I know quite a few of them. I know outfits who all they want to do is talk about politics. And they just want to go on and on about Right Wing politics. And right now most of those people are fairly happy because President Trump is the 45th president. At the present time, most of his programs and ideas reflect a Right-leaning philosophy. However, this very same peo-ple a couple of years ago – and for eight years before that – they were unhappy because President Barack Hussein Obama II seemed to represent a more Left-leaning philosophy. And so for eight years they were growling and mumbling and carrying on. And then for eight years before that, they were happy because George Bush was president – because he was more of a Right-leaning president. And then eight years before that, they were unhappy because Bill Clinton was president – and he was more of a Left-of-Center thinking president. Well, the Left-leaning people had just the opposite reaction. The Left-leaning people now for the past 2 years, 136 days, 0 hours, 31 minutes and 35 seconds have just been beside themselves with hatred for the president. I think that’s very unhealthy. I can’t affect anything that takes place in Washington, D.C. I know nobody of power. I can’t pick up my phone and call somebody in Washington. I can’t call a governor, or a senator, or a representative, or a member of a Cabinet position. I don’t know any of them personally. Nothing that takes place in Washington can I control in any way. And for me or for somebody else to spend all of their time just wringing their hands over what’s taking place in Washington – whether you’re on the Left or the Right – it’s just a total and complete waste of your time and your energy. But underneath it all, we should live a life with the concept of seeking first the kingdom of God. And having the righteousness of GOD poured into us through Their Spirit.

And as He says a little later in that sentence - the next phrase – ‘everything else will take care of itself.’ “’ [A]nd all these things shall be added to you.’” Because as He says in verse 32 – “…’ For your heavenly Father knows that you need …’” - food, and clothing, shelter, and water, and all the things we require just to be alive and to be healthy.

‘My Kingdom is not of this world’

John 18 – this is when Jesus Christ is being examined, interrogated, questioned, by the so-called ruling authorities. Pontius Pilate in verse 35 answered, “’ Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered You to me. What have You done?’” – so Pilate, who was a Roman official, is a little confused – ‘Why did the Jewish temple elite manipulate and maneuver to have this Man arrested and they are campaigning to have Him put to death!?’ And Pilate is like – “What’s going on!? I have nothing to do with your Jewish affairs. And yet, these people want You dead. What have You done?” And Jesus said something in verse 36, which if it’s not marked in your Bible it should be. This is an extremely important concept. Especially for all of you who think church is a place to gather to hear about politics – or after church to sit around and chew about politics.

I know of groups – different groups – that the main activity after they hear a very politically minded opening comment or sermonette or sermon, they then sit around after church, maybe at the dinner table, maybe they go out to eat, and what do they end up talking about!? Politics. Now, folks, this is confusing to me! Remember Paul used the phrase one time – ‘keep your eye on the prize’? ‘The goal of the high calling in Jesus Christ.’ - meaning the Kingdom of God. That’s what Paul was saying. If you really have your eyes – your focus on the Kingdom of God – why are you sitting around ruminating – gossiping, analyzing, giving opinions that mean nothing!? I mean, you can just work your gums all you want, and you are not going to change a single thing that’s happening in Washington or your state capital, or your county, or even in your city government. Nothing is going to change – so, why do you spend so much time chewing on it!? I think because you have nothing else to talk about. I think because you do not have the Kingdom of God and the Truth of God and the Plan of God foremost on your mind. And you spend all of that time yakking just because you have nothing else to say. Well, notice what Jesus says in John 18:36 – a profound comment. “’ My Kingdom is not of this world.’” –He lived His life according to that. Jesus did not get involved in the politics of His day.

The leader of the ICG once sent a letter to some people – which got forwarded to me – in which he was trying to justify his father’s constant haranguing about Right Wing politics. And he stated in this letter that, “Oh, yes, in the first century there were the Roman soldiers and there was a political scene there, and Jesus and the Bible were full of Right Wing politics.” NO, IT’S NOT! Just an abject misrepresentation of the truth of God! And it almost approaches the level of blasphemy - because it’s directly lying about the Word of God! In the Book of Revelation it says, ‘If you twist and distort the Word of God, you’re looking at a very terrible fate.

Well, since I brought that up – Revelation 22:6 – again, this is something everyone needs to think about. Especially if you consider yourself a member of a church group. “Then he said to me, ‘These words are faithful and true.’ And the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show His servants the things which must shortly take place.” And then quoting Jesus – red letter edition – verse 7 – “’ Behold, I AM coming quickly! Blessed is he [or she] who keeps the words [the sayings] of the [teachings] of this Book.’” And then, notice verse 10 – the angelic being said to John, “’ Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this Book, for the time is at hand.”

And I’m one of those that believe that the Book of Revelation was never meant to be understood for almost two-thousand years. And, religious leaders from days gone by - they have had their minds stretched out of limits trying to figure out the Book of Revelation. And you hear so much misrepresentation – you hear the phrase, “Well there’s going to be an apocalypse!” People love to throw that phrase out! Apocalypse. And all the word apocalypse means is an unveiling of truth. A revealing of truth. The Book of Revelation is the Apocalypse. Which means it contains the truth. Which one day was meant to be understood. And at some time in the fairly distant past – the last decade or two – the Book of Revelation is much more understandable than it was in decades ago or generations ago or millennia ago. And he says there in verse 10 – “…for the time is at hand.” – the time of what!? It’s talking about the end-time trauma, and it’s talking about the return of Jesus Christ and the setting up of the Kingdom of God! That’s what the Book of Revelation basically is addressing. ‘The time is at hand.’ And then notice what John was inspired to write – verse 11 – “’ He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; …’” – but on the other hand – “…’ he [or she] who is righteous, let [those people remain righteous]; [those people who are] holy, let [those people continue to be holy].’” Verse 12 – “’ And behold, I AM coming quickly, …’” – the return of Jesus Christ is not that far down the road – now I can’t tell you when. Because no human knows. And any human being that attempts to tell you that they know, they’re a con man or a con woman. They’re misleading you – they’re tempting to manipulate you.

I was going through my computer – and I saw advertising for a sermon which talked about ‘the end of the age’ on June 24th, 2018. And I’m sure there are a lot of want-to-be-prophets! False prophets, that try to come up with their theory to gather attention and maybe gather some membership. Sort of sad – if you think about it. But, ‘the time is at hand.’ Soon. Now, could it be five years, ten years, twenty years!? Well, ‘the time is at hand,’ it’s near! “…’ and My reward is with Me, …’” Now, what is that reward!? Well, a part of that reward is being granted full-time eternal citizenship in the Kingdom of God. And part of that reward is to receive positions of responsibility in the Kingdom of God. And what will we do in the Kingdom of God – sitting around on a cloud playing our harps!? No. We will be upon this E A R T H – because the Kingdom of God is coming to the earth! “’ Thy Kingdom come Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.’” And there are places in the Book of Revelation that talk about we will be kings and priests – cf. Revelation 5:10. ON THE EARTH!’ Behold, I AM coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every [man or woman] according to [his or her] work.’ 13) I AM the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.’” – Jesus Christ is EVERYTHING! And JESUS CHRIST IS FOREVER! Verse 14 – “Blessed are those [people] who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, …” – a symbol of eternal life. “…and may enter through the gates into the city.” – the city of New Jerusalem – the capital city of the Kingdom of God. Verse 15 – But outside [those people who are NOT ALLOWED IN] are dogs and sorcerers and [whoremongers] 1 …” – meaning they’ve gone after false religion. Keep in mind - in the Bible; the majority of the time - words like fornication and adultery, and whoredom, it’s not talking about an illicit relationship between a man and a woman or whatever else goes on. It’s talking about people who have been seduced into following false claims about doctrine. Claims that don’t come from the Bible – that come from the traditions of mankind. And I think at times traditions inspired by Satan the devil and his demons. “…and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie.” – especially with the emphasis on religious lies. Verse 16 – “’ I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I AM the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.’” – some of the names of Jesus Christ. Verse 17 – “And the Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come!’ And let him who hears say, ‘Come!’ And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.” – a very symbolic metaphorical language about drinking in the Spirit of God and therefore having eternal life. Verse 18 – “For I testify to everyone who hears of the [teachings] of this Book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him [or her] the plagues that are written in this Book; 19) and if anyone takes away from the words of the Book of this [teaching], God shall take away his [or her] part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this Book. 20) He who testifies to these things says, ‘Surely I AM coming quickly.’ Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” And then he ends the Bible with the following phrase, verse 21 – “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.” – and again he says, “Amen.”

It makes me cry - I have heard of multiple people in the last ten, fifteen years who have gotten up at their pulpits teaching their people – “You must never say the word Amen! It’s rude! It’s like hanging up on God!” And yet, the phrase and the idea is clearly stated in the Bible – we just read it twice. The last two verses of the Bible use that phrase – and it appears in so many other places. All it is is an affirmation of the idea – “Yes! So be it!” “Let this be done!”

So, returning back to John 18 – “’ My Kingdom is not of this world,’” – and as I had previously relayed to you, the leader of the ICG once sent a letter to some people – which got forwarded to me – in which he was actually trying to state that Right Wing politics was a main theme of the New Testament Church. And I made the comment – it approaches if not crosses over the level of blasphemy – just a direct misinterpretation and delivery of the Bible. Falsehood. Just total and complete garbage. That’s not how Jesus lived His life! It’s not how the Apostle Paul lived his life. It’s not how the other apostles who wrote Books, which became parts of the New Testament, lived their lives. And yet, the leader of that organization was trying so hard to justify his father’s fascination and obsession and dedication to talking about Right Wing politics. And what did Jesus say!? Let’s look at it again – and if you don’t have this marked, please mark this! “’ My Kingdom is not of this world.’” So, why are you conducting your church obsessing on Right Wing politics or maybe on Left Wing politics!? And realize that Jesus Christ – that’s not what He was about! He was about the Kingdom of God! He was talking about Him being our Savior. He was talking about the concepts and the precepts of the New Covenant. He was talking about the soon-coming Kingdom of God to the earth. And how that we – through the grace of God – could be in a position to inherit that great gift. “…’ If My Kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, …’” – His servants would roll up their sleeves and get involved in a vigorous way. But you see, that’s not what He was about. And yet so many churches this is what they get into. Left Wing politics or Right Wing politics, and there ought to be No Wing politics. They ought to be talking about the Kingdom of God and Jesus Christ! “…’ so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My Kingdom is not from here.’ 37) Pilate therefore said to Him, ‘Are You a king then?’ Jesus answered, ‘You say rightly that I AM a King. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.’” – ‘understands My voice.’ He was to be the King of the Kingdom of God – and that’s where we who have ears to hear, that’s where our emphasis should be.

Hebrews 12:1 – “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, …” – now, this was written by the Apostle Paul. I believe – I don’t think there’s any doubt about it. There are some people who want to have a debate about it. And Paul is saying, ‘there are so many people – who are alive right now – who saw Jesus Christ when He was human, who saw Him perform many miracles, who saw Him slain, tortured to death, and then they saw Him after He was resurrected. And they know that the teachings from Jesus Christ are true without any doubt.’ That’s why so many of the apostles were willing to be tortured to death themselves because they knew with certainty of the validity of the story which they were relaying. That Jesus Christ had died, and then He had risen from the dead, and that someday He was coming back, and that we have a chance to be a part of that Kingdom. “…let us lay aside every weight, …” - every temptation, every distraction. And I contend that getting yourself involved in politics is a major distraction – a major ‘weight.’ “…and the sin which so easily ensnares us, …” – being a human being we’re just susceptible to making mistakes. “…and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” – and what is that race!? LOOKING TO THE KINGDOM OF GOD and verse 2 – “looking unto Jesus, the author, and finisher of our faith, …” LOOK TO JESUS!

And that was the title of the sermon the last time I ever was allowed to speak at the organization of ICG. And that sermon just drove the leader and his sycophants bananas. It got them all agitated and upset. Because I was talking about Jesus. I wasn’t talking about politics. I wasn’t talking about Messianic Judaism which some of them wanted to talk about. I wasn’t going to have it on my record that I was teaching propaganda – when I should have been teaching the truth of God. And so I am no longer a part of their organization. And, after the sermon, a very agitated leader and second-hand man confronted me and said, “Mike, you said that Jesus died!” As if they were surprised! And I thought – “What Bible have these guys been reading!?”

Very quickly turn to the first chapter of the Book of Revelation. Revelation 1:17 – John said, “And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, ‘Do not be afraid; I AM the First and the Last. 18) I AM He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I AM alive forevermore. Amen. …’” – once again, Jesus used that phrase! “…’ And I have the keys of [the grave] and of Death.’” – meaning He had the ability to unlock death – to unlock your casket, to unlock your grave – and to bring you back to life! Again, verse 18’ I AM He who lives, and was dead, …’ Now, it’s amazing, but, somewhere during that sermon – Look To Jesus Not Moses – I had referred to the fact that Jesus Christ had died. Well, He did. And the leader of that church group was astounded and shocked that I had said Jesus was dead one time. He had died. Well, Jesus said that! And quite frankly, if Jesus never died we would not have a Savior!

Let’s now go to my original notes for Day of Pentecost And Healing Part 1.

Let’s turn again to Acts 2 to review – “When the Day of Pentecost …” – remember in the first part I talked about what that word literally means “to count fifty.” I won’t go through the whole process, but back in the Book of Leviticus 23, we were told that the chief priest was to take a group of grain – a sheath they called it – wave it on the Sabbath which occurred during the week of Unleavened Bread. And sometimes that Sabbath occurs early, sometimes it occurs late, sometimes it’s the first day, sometimes it’s the last day, but there’s always one weekly Sabbath. And that sheath of grain was to represent the firstfruits – Jesus Christ is the first of the firstfruits. And all of the rest of the people who will be resurrected at the return of Jesus Christ with the blowing of the seventh trump. Yet to happen – but not that far down the road. And they were to count seven weeks – 7 x 7 = 49 – and on ‘the morrow’ the next day equals 50. So it’s a fifty-day count. And if you follow the Bible, the Day of Pentecost is always on a Sunday. And, oddly enough, there are many Protestant churches that know this.

I read in my paper an article in the religious section where a woman – who was the pastor of a church – was talking about the “joy of the Day of Pentecost.” And she - early in the article - wrote, “We know that today was the Day of Pentecost.” And it’s interesting that they know that – good for them – I wish they would know more.

“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.” – now, they were not at the temple at this point. Verse 2 – “And suddenly there came a sound from [the sky], …” – that’s what the word heaven means there. The sky – the atmosphere. “…as a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.” – it wasn’t in the temple, it was a house. Maybe it was a house they were renting, maybe it was a house Jesus owned, maybe it was a house one of the other people owned. We’re not told. Verse 3 – “Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.” – it literally looked as if their head was on fire. Now, it wasn’t actual fire, it was a manifestation produced by the Spirit of God that gives this visual image. Verse 4 – “And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit …” – at that point – remember Jesus Christ had said, ‘Stay here in Jerusalem and I will pour out My Spirit.’ – Cf. Acts 1:8. And He told them how He wanted them to stay together – cf. Acts 1:4-5. And so that’s what we’re reading here.

“And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit …” – now, I’ve heard people say, “Well, you have to be baptized in order to receive God’s Spirit.” No. There were people in the Old Testament that we never read about being baptized – and yet we’re told that they had God’s Spirit. And now here the official twelve apostles – they were the twelve disciples, but with this act, with this divine miracle – and keep in mind the Day of Pentecost was a day of miracles and healing – their job title is no longer disciple. But now their job title reads apostles. “…and began to speak with other [languages], as the Spirit gave them utterance.” – now, why did God do this!? 1) It was spectacular. I mean the heads on fire – that would get your attention! They knew something special was happening, all they had to do was look at the other eleven and go, “Oh my! This is – I think – what Jesus was talking about!” 2) And the fact that now, they were probably – and I’m sure that some of them spoke more than one language because of the mixtures of cultures in which they lived. But now all of a sudden they could speak in other languages ‘as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ Verse 5 – “And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven.” – remember this was an annual holy day. And who knows, some of these people might have come for the Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread, and just stuck around until this holiday was over. Verse 6 – “And when this sound occurred, …” – when this story started escaping – people telling people, more people telling more people – “…the multitude came together, and were confused, …” – now we get a little bit of clarification in this sentence. “…because everyone heard them speak in his own language.” We’re told the same thing down in verse 11 – “…we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” – so, here there’s an apostle speaking – maybe it was Peter – and somebody from Crete heard everything Peter was saying in Cretan Greek. And maybe there was another person from Arabia, and they heard it in Arabic. And a Parthian or a Mede would hear him speak a language related to Persian. ‘we hear them speaking in our own language.’ The gift that is taking place here is not so much the utterance which came from the apostles’ mouths – the true miracle is how it was received in the ears, in the brains, of the listeners. And, automatically, they heard it change into their own language.

Now, this is a whole lot different – there is a group of people that call themselves Pentecostals. And, some of you might very well be of that background. But one of the main teaching points in their religion is – to really show that you have God’s Spirit you must be able to babble in an unknown tongue. And when they say unknown tongue, I mean they really mean it! It’s supposed to be a language which nobody can understand. Well, what good does it do anyone!? This was not an unknown ‘tongue,’ because people were hearing it exactly in their own language. There was a purpose behind this miracle – so that everyone could hear the Message and receive the Message!

You know, quite frankly, we use to have the Jimmy Swaggart program available on our cable network here. As of a few months ago, it disappeared. I don’t know if they couldn’t pay their bills or what happened. But every so often – you know there would be some person in the crowd just stand up and babble. And the people would be so impressed by that. And every so often you’d see Jimmy back in the background babbling. It was just gibberish. And I have actually heard that there have been linguists – people who study languages – who have studied some of the recordings of some of these so-called “utterances” from people like Swaggart, and they said it’s just noise. 2 It’s NOT a language. But, the people who belong to that movement – well that’s big wampum! That’s high stuff! And, to me, it just makes the Truth of God and the Word of God look like a carnival sideshow. And I find it embarrassing and disappointing. Verse 7 – “Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, ‘Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? 8) And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?” – again, the miracle was not in the speaking, the miracle was in the hearing. And why did God institute this miracle!? Because He wanted everyone there – many different nations; and in a moment we’ll read some of the places they came from – to hear the same Message! No one was left out! Verse 9 – “Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10) Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes.” – meaning natural born Jewish people and people who had joined the faith. They all had a connection with the Jewish religion. And that’s why they were there – they were keeping the time-honored Feast of the Firstfruits (Day of Pentecost). Verse 11 – “Cretans and Arabs – we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.’ 12) So they were all amazed and [confused], saying to one another, ‘Whatever could this mean?’” And, others were smart aleks – mockers who said, verse 13 – “…’ They are full of new wine.’ 14) But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, ‘Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. 15) For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.’” – do you know what time that would be on our clocks!? 9 o’clock in the morning. The first hour of the day was about 6 o’clock – basically, wake up time. And this is the third hour of the day – which is 9 o’clock. And Peter was saying, “We’re not drunk! We haven’t been drinking! It’s only 9 o’clock in the morning!” Verse 16 – “But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 17) ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. 18) And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall [teach].’” – that’s all the word prophesy means. 3 Teaching under an inspired mantle – meaning from the Spirit of God. Verse 19 – “’ I will show wonders in heaven [the atmosphere] above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke.’” – now, he ends up talking about truly what’s going to happen in the latter days. A part of the end-time trauma – as I like to call it. Verse 20 – “’ The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome Day of the LORD.’The DAY OF THE LORD – that date in future history where Jesus Christ returns to this earth and encounters human beings face to face. And it will not be a pleasant time for most of the people upon this earth. It will be a day of judgment and retribution and punishment. It will be a day – remember back at the beginning of the Iraq War!? The American Administration used the term “shock and awe.” Well, that’s what the end-time trauma will be! A period of shock and awe! Verse 21 – “’ And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved.’” – so, he was quoting a bit from the Old Testament – the prophet Joel. And then, Peter says the following –

Verse 22 – “’ Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man [approved] by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs …’” – now, why were there so many miracles in the life and within the ministry of Jesus Christ!? The miracles were not needed in order for Him to preach His Message. The miracles took place so that He would get their attention. So people would perk up and go, “Hey, this isn’t some run-of-the-mill preacher man, this guy, He knows what He’s saying!” And He backs it up – His bonafides – is that the miracles of God follow Him wherever He goes! And I will remind you one more time – the Jesus Christ who did those things is the same Jesus Christ that now is alive and sits upon the right-hand side of God the Father and HE IS FOREVER! And the things He did back in the first century A.D. are the same things that He can do now! If we who are attempting to follow Him would simply conduct our lives and our thoughts and our attitudes the way He wants us to – to be focused on Him. To be focused on the Kingdom of God.

A lot of these church groups I alluded to earlier, you don’t hear of miracles taking place. Well, what do you expect!? You spend all your time talking about Right Wing politics and you don’t even mention Jesus Christ or the Kingdom of God or the glory of God, or the glory of Jesus Christ, or the Plan of God – why do you think Jesus Christ would be listening to your prayers!? Don’t let your mind get infected with NEGATIVITY! Negativity is right up there with bitterness. In fact, negativity is a type of bitterness. And once that gets into you and takes over your heart, your heart begins to turn to stone. And your ability to connect with God Almighty and Jesus Christ will simply cease.

Continuing with verse 22 – “…which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know – 23) Him, being delivered by the determined [counsel] and foreknowledge of God, you have crucified, and put to death.” – now Peter was talking to some of the people who are in the crowd when Pilate was wanting to find an excuse to let Jesus go. And that rabble – that demonstrative crowd, probably being led by the Jewish leaders – started shouting, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” And now, some of those very same people are in this crowd to whom Peter is speaking. And he told them the truth – dead-on – didn’t waver a bit. “You took Jesus, and by your wicked hands and the wicked hands of other people, you crucified, and you murdered!” Verse 24 – “whom God [has now] raised up, having loosed the pains of death because it was not possible that He should be held by [death].” – now isn’t that a beautiful concept!? Jesus Christ – after three days and three nights in the tomb could no longer be held by death. But God the Father called Him out of His deep sleep and restored His life – and not just physical life, but back to His original eternal spiritual life. And because Jesus Christ walked out of that tomb He set an example where all of us someday – and hopefully with the blowing of the SEVENTH TRUMP not too far down the road – we too can walk out of our tombs, or be instantly changed from mortal to immortal. That was a wonderful event! Verse 25 – “For [King] David says concerning Him: ‘I foresaw the LORD always before my face, For He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken.’” – David was saying, ‘Jesus Christ is my anchor.’ Or as Paul said, ‘The anchor of my life, of my soul.’ Verse 26 – “’ Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue was glad; Moreover my flesh also will rest in hope.’” – David knew that someday he would die. But he knew that he would rest or sleep in the hope of salvation. Verse 27 – “’ For You will not leave my [existence] in Hades [the grave] 4, Nor will You allow Your Holy One [the Messiah – Jesus Christ] to see corruption.’” – so, even David knew that Jesus would not decompose. And after three days and three nights Jesus was restored back to eternal life. Verse 28 – “’ You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of joy in Your presence.’ 29) ‘Men and brethren, let me speak freely to you of the patriarch David, …’” – and then Peter, very clearly – “…that he is both dead and buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30) Therefore, being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of the fruit of his body, according to the flesh, He would raise up the Christ to sit on his throne.’” – and truly Jesus Christ was of the lineage of King David. Verse 31 – “’ he, foreseeing this, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Christ, …’” – so, in that passage, David is sort of speaking about himself, and it also has a dual meaning referring to Jesus Christ. “…’ that His soul [His life] was not left in [the grave], nor did His flesh see corruption. 32) This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses.’” – all of the apostles – that had “fire” crowning their heads, who was speaking and having everybody around them hear and understand them in their own language. These people were witnesses of the life and the miracles of Jesus Christ, His arrest, His torture, His trial, His eventual human death – and then three days and three nights later – His resurrection.

Verse 32 – “’ This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses.’” – they knew He had been alive, they knew He had demonstrated the power of many miracles, and they knew that He was arrested, had a sham trial, tortured to death. And they knew that after three days and three nights He rose from the tomb. They were witnesses. Verse 33 – “Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear.’” – referring to those apostle speaking – mainly Peter at this time. Verse 34 – “’ For [King] David did not ascend into the heavens, …’” – we’re told in Acts 13 that ‘David was a man after God’s own heart.’ We’re told in multiple places that David will be the king over all Israel in the Kingdom of God. David lived. David died – and was buried. And he did not go to Heaven. Because ‘no man has gone to Heaven’ except Jesus Christ – the One who came down from Heaven.

I probably read that verse there at that funeral, where that man glared at me with hatred. Because I was also telling him, ‘No, your sons not up in Heaven, your son is in his grave.’ But what he didn’t hear was, ‘Your son someday shall live again. And have a chance to qualify for the Kingdom of God.’ “’For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘The LORD said to my Lord, ‘Sit at My right hand, 35) Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.’ 36) Therefore let all the House of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, …’” – Peter is still excoriating this crowd. ‘whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.’” – and keep this in mind – after the arrest of Jesus, and the death of Jesus – the followers of Jesus were petrified with fear. Remember, they were hiding out, hoping that the Roman soldiers wouldn’t know where they were. They felt like they were being hunted. And they felt that if they had been found, they too would be arrested and tortured and crucified. But now, after the Day of Pentecost, upon receiving an outpouring of God’s Spirit, these same now apostles, are without fear. They have no sense of cowardice. They are completely headstrong in their desire, to tell the truth of God!

Verse 37 – “Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, …” – their conscience felt guilty. “…and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Men and brethren, what shall we do?’” – ‘Yes, we had a hand in the death of Jesus Christ! What do we do now!?’ And the next verse, I hope is marked in your Bible! Verse 38 – “Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, …’” – now a lot of people get that word, and they sort of wrap it up in religious strings and bows and paper, and they don’t understand that the word is very simple. The word repent means for a person to sit down in a prayerful attitude. Examine their lives and be willing to admit before God that they are a very flawed individual. Most people are so selfish – and so self-oriented – they don’t really realize what lousy people they really are. But if Jesus Christ and God Almighty start working with you, at some point, you will begin to perceive that as a human being you have a lot of faults, flaws, that you’ve made many mistakes. You can call them sins if you want to – their mistakes, problems. And all it means is that you’re asking God to help you to change. “Help me to change! Help me to become a different type of person! Instead of becoming totally focused on me, help me to become a human being which is focused on You dear Brother! Upon Your words and Your thoughts and Your actions and Your ideas! And Your ideals and Your hopes, and Your future!” And that probably means changing your attitude about a lot of other people. “…’ and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission …’” – for the forgiveness of all of your past mistakes. “…’ and you shall receive the gift of [God’s] Holy Spirit.’ 39) For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, …” – in which we’re in that group. ‘Afar off in space and time.’ “…as many as the Lord our God will call.”

I hope that all of you, and all of us here, will take this sermon as an opportunity to once again revisit those words of the Apostle Peter. Be willing to change. And be willing to dedicate your life to Jesus Christ and to the Word of God, and to the Truth of God, and to the Plan of God – to the New Covenant and the Kingdom of God and to New Jerusalem. To put your focus there! Not on the things of worldly politics. We read early, Jesus said in John 18 – “’ My Kingdom is NOT of this world.’We have a higher calling. We should be looking well beyond this earth. We should be looking for the return of Jesus Christ and the establishment of New Jerusalem. We should be looking forward to the change of ourselves from physical human beings into immortal spiritual beings. My friends, please focus on that! ‘Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness’ and everything else will take care of itself.

We thank you so much for being with us today. We ask that you come back again. We ask that you share this information with your friends, family members, neighbors, co-workers, church members. I hope you continue this journey with us. We pray for you, and may your life be safe from injury, accident, illness. And may you allow your mind to be open to the truth of God. Not the traditions of human beings – but rather the truth of the Bible – the Truth of God, the Word of God, and the Plan of God! And we say all of these words in the name of Jesus Christ – our Savior and our soon coming King! Until next time, goodbye my friends.


1 pornos, n. GK: 4521 [→ 4204]. one who is sexually immoral [male or female], in some contexts distinguished from an adulterer ( 1Cor. 6:9). The Strongest Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. Strong, James, Zondervan, 2001, #4205, pg. 1638. Note: Whoremonger also is in relation to #4204 which is: pornē, … prostitute, a woman who practices sexual immorality for payment; this can refer to religious unfaithfulness.
2 Professor William J. Samarin of the University of Toronto's Department of Linguistics published after more than a decade of careful research, he rejected the view that glossolalia is xenoglossia, i.e. some foreign language that could be understood by another person who knew that language. Samarin concluded that glossolalia is a "pseudo-language." He defined glossolalia as "unintelligible babbling speech that exhibits superficial phonological similarity to language, without having consistent syntagmatic structure and that is not systematically derived from or related to known language." William J. Samarin, Variation and Variables in Religious Glossolalia, Language in Society, ed. Dell Haymes, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1972 pgs. 121-130.
3 prophēteuō, v. GK: 4736 [→ 4394]. to prophesy, to speak an inspired message, … The Strongest Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. Strong, James. Zondervan. 2001. #4395. pg. 1640.
While any Christian might occasionally receive a prophecy, some seem, to have a special gift of prophecy (1 Cor. 12:29; 13:2). … While teaching and prophecy are different, they also can be related (Acts 13:1-2; Rev. 2:20). Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary. Holman Reference, 2015 by B & H Publishing Group, pg. 1305.
4 hadēs n. GK: 87. Hades, the grave, … The Strongest Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. Strong, James. Zondervan. 2001, #86, pg. 1588

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