John J. Blanchard
October 3, 2015
Feast of Tabernacles
There is an old barn here in Tennessee known as the “Get Right Barn.” The sign on it says, “get right with God.” That begs the question, how do we get right with God?
It is understood that grace is a free gift from God. It is unmerited pardon for our sins based on the blood of Christ shed for our sins. Is that all we have to accept to get right with God? Or do we have any responsibility in the matter other than asking for forgiveness? Do we need to do anything? There are a number of Scriptures that say we do. I will read a few this afternoon.
Turn to the epistle of James chapter 2, verse 14: “What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,’ but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’ Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?”
Even the demons believe that God exists, and they understand that Jesus Christ is the Savior. They tried to prevent Him from having His shed blood available for mankind, but they knew He was God. Is it just enough to have faith in Christ’s shed blood? No. We need works. It clearly states faith without works is dead.
Go back a page to James chapter 1, verse 21: “Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.”
It literally is deceiving yourself if you say we really only have to accept the blood of Christ.
Continuing in verse 23 of James 1: “For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does. If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless. Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world”
In other words, to be a doer is to do physical good works to other people and to keep one away from sin.
It says we measure ourselves and we look at ourselves in the perfect law of liberty, which of course is the Ten Commandments. We look into that law as if looking into a mirror, and we measure ourselves by it. We should get an image of ourselves as a sinner that needs the blood of Christ but as someone who needs to do more toward his fellowman. If we turn away and do nothing, it is like we don’t even remember who we are. That is a pretty serious accusation.
THE CHURCH MUST GET READY FOR CHRIST
Let’s go to Revelation chapter 19 because we are explicitly told here the Church gets ready through its acts of service and love toward their fellowman. Revelation 19, beginning in verse 6: “And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, ‘Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.’”
This is the innumerable multitude in joy and wonderment and praising God for the bride who has made herself ready.
Verse 8 goes on to say: “And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”
We have talked in the past about how God has stored the linen we have made during our life. He stores it in the treasure house in heaven, and He gives us our garment when He returns. What if we have nothing stored there. What if the moths have eaten our linen and our beautiful garments here on earth because we did nothing with the time we had. Worse yet, what if we harmed people instead of helping them. Then we are full of spots and blemishes, and our garment has holes in it.
It is the righteous acts of the saints that God is looking at. It goes without saying that the saints have received the blood of Christ. Now God says let’s see what they do with it.
THE COMMANDMENTS ARE RIGHTEOUSNESS
The law of God is that perfect law of liberty. The Ten Commandments are the standard of measure. It’s what we use to look into the mirror and see how we are measuring up. Righteousness comes from keeping God’s laws. It is the righteous acts of the saints. It is from keeping God’s laws and doing it to the very best of our ability.
Let’s go to Psalm 119, verse 172: “My tongue shall speak of Your word, for all Your commandments are righteousness.”
The commandments are righteousness, and they become our righteousness if we are doers of the word and sharers of the word. We don’t just go about our lives accepting the blood of Christ and do nothing with it. We have a responsibility to do something for our fellowman. Doing the Ten Commandments in our lives is righteousness.
In the gospel of John, chapter 14, verse 15 Christ says: “If you love Me, keep My commandments.”
What Christian wouldn’t say they love Jesus Christ? If we love Him, we are to keep His commandments.
John 14, verse 16: “And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another helper, that He may abide with you forever—the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.”
We all want the Holy Spirit—Jesus Christ’s power—within us. But He starts out with, if you love Me and you want Me to dwell with you, keep My commandments. If we want the power of the Holy Spirit to be able to work within us, we must be striving to do good works by the measure of the Ten Commandments. It should go without saying. Yet so many people who say they are Christian say the law has been done away; you don’t need to observe those things; we only need faith, no works.
In Matthew chapter 5, right after going through the Beatitudes, Christ explained once again how important His law was. In Matthew chapter 5, verse 17 Christ says: “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
It is without a doubt important to keep the Ten Commandments. If we love Jesus Christ and we want to actually be something in the kingdom of God, we need to keep the Ten Commandments. If we want to be part of the bride of Christ that the world will look to and say, look, the bride has made herself ready, then we had better be trying to keep the Ten Commandments.
Often the laws, the teachings, and the commandments of men come in direct conflict with the law of God. It is getting more so that way all the time. The laws that mankind passes and the doctrines that churches are teaching come more and more into conflict with God’s laws.
PEACE FROM THE COMMANDMENTS
Go back to Psalm 119 for just a moment. Psalm 119, verse 165: “Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble.” It can also be translated “to fall away.”
At this Feast of Tabernacles, we are talking about peace, and that we want peace in our lives. It comes as a fruit of keeping God’s law. Great peace have all those who keep God’s commandments. When we do that, we are less likely to stumble, and we are not going to fall away. Because we know the value of Christ’s blood and we are doers and not just hearers, we can take advantage of that blood when we stumble. We won’t fall way from the truth. If we lose sight of God’s laws, we can fall away from the truth.
The Ten Commandments are very important. Most of the United States would say they are Christians. Much of the world would say they are Christian. Why aren’t we focusing on God’s laws? Like I said, many laws that are getting passed around the world and many teachings even from churches are in direct conflict with the Ten Commandments! How can we have peace in the world if nations that are supposedly God fearing don’t respect God’s laws? How can we be blessed with peace?
People around the world are getting fed up with war, violence, blood shed, and all manner of evil, but most of the world doesn’t want to hear about the Ten Commandments, at least not yet. The United Nations is the world’s most recent attempt at peace, yet they don’t mention God or the Ten Commandments. They don’t speak of God’s laws. They will talk about human rights and laws that they want passed in various nations for human rights, and some of those rights are contrary to God’s laws! They call them rights. We will go through some of them in a moment.
The world is awash in violence and knows there are huge problems. Suicide bombings are in the news every day, as well as the use of IED’s. Wars and rumors of wars spring up constantly. In various rebellions around the world, people shed each other’s blood. We now have more refugees on earth than any time since World War II, so things are getting worse and not better! Since World War II we have had the United Nations, but it is deteriorating.
SINS OF OUR NATION
The United States where we are meeting here, once was a true beacon of hope. It is now in decline. Anybody who would argue with that just needs to look at the statistics. We could go through economic statistics, family statistics, and societal problem statistics. Every measure shows that we are in decline, and we are supposed to be a beacon of hope.
I saw an interesting cartoon, if you want to call it a cartoon. It was rather sad. It was in USA Today a couple of weeks back. Germany announced that they were going to take in a half a million refugees, I think it was, from Syria. There was workman taking down the statue of liberty and putting it on a boat. A passerby said, where are you going with that? We are going to Europe where they are accepting the refugees. In other words, the beacon of hope—the Statue of Liberty—we are taking it over there. It is a sad commentary on our country at this time.
The country is awash in violence. During the Feast of Tabernacles I watched the news a few times, and there is violence taking place right now. There are mass murders and drug wars. They are arguing over gun control and various things, as they always do after a major violent event. One side will point out that in one of our major cities, Chicago, there have been 111 shootings in two weekends! They have strict gun control laws there. The other side says, if there were no guns and under control, we wouldn’t have them. Criminals always seem to find a way to break laws, and that’s why they are called criminals. They don’t care what laws you have. I am not a proponent of gun laws or no gun laws. We need some regulation. The point is they are striving at what to do over the national situation, but you never hear them say anything about the Ten Commandments. It’s more, God’s laws versus man’s laws. They want to pass more and more of man’s laws that are band-aides on the problem.
Corruption seems to be endemic. It seems to be everywhere. Every week there is another investigation. They always claim we are going to open it up to the public. We want to be transparent in this investigation, and you see one government official after another lie even under oath. You see cover up after cover up. The investigations seem to go nowhere, and then they die a quiet death. There is always another investigation to pop up.
People lie today with impunity. Like I said, government officials lie under oath. People, corporations, and everybody from athletes to stars lie, and the rest of us sort of accept it as that is how it is. It wasn’t always that way. A man’s word meant something not that long ago.
Cheating and all sorts of endeavors are endemic. There is cheating in sports, cheating in the investment world, the stock market, in corporations, and recently in emissions standards in vehicles. It is like cheating is going on all the time. We say, oh well, that’s how it is! Cheating used to be really looked down on. It was a terrible thing to be called a cheater just a few decades ago.
Yet we say we want peace. We want prosperity. We want the blessings of God. How many politicians end their speech with “God bless America?” It’s a given. God bless America! We want blessings and prosperity, but we are not living up to the standard that would give it to us.
The Ten Commandments indeed hold the answer on how to straighten out this whole mess. We are going to examine the Ten Commandments, but before we do, I want to go to Proverbs 14. Proverbs chapter 14, verse 34: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.”
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS ARE THE ANSWER
I think it’s even more of a reproach to a nation, or a group of people, or a culture, that once felt righteousness is important and God’s law is important. I think that is a tremendous shame to lose sight of the fact that righteousness is important, because sin will indeed abound if the people do not care about righteousness. Righteousness is keeping God’s law, as we read.
Let’s go to Exodus 20, and you will want to put a marker in Exodus 20. We are going to go back and forth from that chapter. We will get started in Exodus 20, verse 1. “And God spoke all these words, saying: ‘I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me.’”
In other words, no other god before the God who brought the Ten Commandments. That’s the first commandment. The second one is very similar.
Verse 4 of Exodus 20: “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.”
We all want God’s mercy, and we want our nation to have God’s mercy. He says if you want it, keep My commandments. Those first two commandments go together because here we speak specifically in the second commandment about not putting up idols, statues, and icons to worship. There are churches that still do that. Of course, there are pagan societies that do that around the world. It is a double shame when it’s a Christian church breaking this commandment. It’s right here!
Anything that elevates itself above God in our life is an idol. That’s why He said, don’t have anything above God, above Me—the God who brings you the Ten Commandments. It can be money. I would have to say in the Western world, and maybe even more so in the United States than anywhere, money is a god. They even call it the almighty dollar. It can be things.
Each generation is becoming increasingly materialistic. It can be technology. People will wait overnight in the rain to get the next iPhone. It’s unbelievable! But will they darken the door of a church? How about if there was a line up, and they had to wait to get in and it was raining? What are they telling God?
I think also leisure and entertainment can be a problem. We want more and more leisure time. We want more and more to entertain us. There are whole stores now of games, video games, and computer games, and movies. It’s always, what’s the latest out there? It is usually garbage, but people just can’t wait for the next movie or the next game that they can add the next app on their phone. Talk about the Ten Commandments and their eyes glaze right over. What are we telling God? Where does He rate? We can have idols that are not just statues. There are lots of things that we can make our idol.
Let’s look at the third commandment. Let’s go to Exodus 20, verse 7: “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.”
Most people would assume that means don’t swear because that’s taking God’s name in vain. Some people include cussing, but that is such a simplistic view. Besides they do it anyway. They know that’s there and that’s one of the commandments, and they still do it, which mocks God.
What does the word in “vain” really mean? Does that mean if you hit your thumb with a hammer that you have to keep your mouth shut? I have done that many times. No, it doesn’t mean that. That word in “vain” in the Hebrew is shav (#7723, Strong’s Concordance, 1995), which means a tempest, to rush over, by implication devastation, in the sense of a devastating evil, destructiveness and ruin.
When we use that definition of taking God’s name in vain, we can see it when we apply it to what we see in the world today. So many evil things are done. We see so much destruction and so much death in the name of God, and that is taking God’s name in vain. When you say, “Allahu Akbar” and you make a plane crash, that’s taking God’s name in vain. If you are a Christian and you espouse another “crusade,” you are taking God’s name in vain. In all the times in past history when we have done those things, we have taken God’s name in vain. In the most recent shooting, and we are not going to go into the graphic details, apparently the shooter wanted to know if they were Christian or not. If he thought he was doing God some sort of favor, he was taking God’s name in vain.
We are beginning to see that these Ten Commandments and following them is crucial if we are going to solve the problems that we have in the world today. Both Christianity and Islam revere the Ten Commandments because they both say the Old Testament is from God! How can you square that circle? I just don’t see how it works, and it’s done every day lately. In the last few years it has gotten worse. It is just inexcusable that so many have killed so many others by taking God’s name in vain.
You can also throw in this idea of God Himself wanting to destroy the earth. If you preach that God wants to destroy this earth, you are preaching using God’s name in vain because God wants to preserve the earth for a beautiful Millennium. How many Christians and Christian teachers put out literature and sermons and material showing that God is so angry that He is going to destroy just about everybody except their little group? It’s always conveniently put that way. That’s taking God’s name in vain. God says, I am going to pull you out of the fire! I am going to save this planet. I want a Millennium. There will be an innumerable multitude to sing God’s praises that the bride of Christ has made herself ready. They can’t do that if they are all dead. There can’t be an innumerable multitude if everyone has died in some terrible nuclear devastation or because God threw stars at the earth, or whatever your personal doctrine is that you hold. That’s all taking God’s name in vain.
Anything that promotes ruination, death, and destruction comes from God’s arch enemy, Satan, because God is all about life. Satan is all about death.
THE SABBATH AND HOLY DAYS
Let’s go to the fourth commandment in Exodus 20, verse 8: “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.”
Only God can make something holy, but why is it that mainstream Christianity and Islam have both moved the Sabbath day one day off? Can you explain to me why Sunday can be observed by most of Christianity as the Sabbath day and Friday by the Islamic world as a holy day, when God says in His Ten Commandments and elsewhere in the Old Testament that it’s Saturday? There is no logical explanation other than they have fallen for a trick from God’s arch enemy Satan.
It’s the same with the holy days. Only God can proclaim a day holy, or anything as far as that goes. There can’t be a holy icon or holy statue or holy water. Only God can make something holy. When He says the Sabbath day and His holy days are holy, they are. Nothing else that man can do or say or touch can be made holy. Yet, mankind has set up his own holy days. I am speaking specifically right at the moment about mainstream Christianity and Islam.
Leviticus 23 tells us what God’s holy days are. We are not going to read the entire chapter. Leave your marker in Exodus 20, and let’s go to Leviticus chapter 23 where all the holy days are listed.
We will start in Leviticus 23, verse 1: “And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: “The feasts of the Lord, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, these are My feasts. Six days shall work be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, a holy convocation. You shall do not work on it; it is the Sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings.”’”
The first holy day that He wants you to recognize is the Sabbath day. It comes around every week. We praise God’s seven thousand year plan. Then He goes through each of the holy days.
Toward the end of the chapter in verse 37 of Leviticus 23, He says: “These are the feasts of the Lord which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire to the Lord, a burnt offering and a grain offering, a sacrifice and drink offerings, everything on its day—besides the Sabbaths of the Lord…”
Besides these weekly Sabbaths, He has given us these other holy days. That’s it! But why are mainstream Christianity and Islam observing other days? Why is it important, anyway?
Since only God can make a day holy and ascribe meaning to that day and what the fulfillment of that day will be, that means all others are incorrect. Those errors lead us into more errors, so they lead us away from God. They block the understanding of God’s plan. They block the knowledge of His prophetic time schedule. They block the knowledge of where we are in that schedule. They encourage false worship. They encourage war and hatred because these religions say if you don’t believe like they believe, you are worthy of death. One will say you go to hell, and you burn forever. The other will say you either have an opportunity now to repent and get off God’s day or whatever day you are on and keep the day we ascribe, or we will behead you. Unless you want to pay a poll tax the rest of your life. Either of those approaches is incorrect, but a lot of wars and millions and millions of people have died because of them! If we had just kept the Ten Commandments, none of that would have happened. None of what we see going on now would be happening.
When pundits look and ask, what should we do about all these problems and how do we stop terrorism, it’s not by shooting them all dead. There are too many of them, and that’s not the source of the problem. They are not keeping the Ten Commandments, even though the tenets of their faith say the Old Testament comes from God! The Christians who say “nuke ‘em” are not keeping the Ten Commandments in their attitude. The Ten Commandments are literally the solution to the problem.
SATAN DECEIVES THE WORLD
How did we get into his fix? Let’s go to Daniel. Once again keep your marker in Exodus. We are going to Daniel 7. Daniel 7, verse 25: “He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, shall persecute the saints of the Most High, and shall intend to change times and law. Then the saints shall be given into his hand for a time and times and half a time.”
Who wants to change times and law? It’s Satan. He hates God’s law. He hates God’s time schedule, because when God’s plan gets fulfilled with the holy days, he knows he is going to eventually be removed from any power and influence on this earth forever. He and the demons who have turned against God and wanted to be like God will be locked away forever. We could read all of the prophecies and Scriptures about that in Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28. We don’t have time for all that.
Satan is the being that wants to change times and laws, but he has to work through human beings. He inspires and directs human beings to move one day off the Sabbath, to switch a holy day here, switch a holy day there, change a doctrine here, and change a doctrine there, so we are all totally confused about what God really wants. Sadly enough, most often we are willing to kill or die for it. It’s crazy, but that’s how powerful Satan is and how deceitful he is.
II Thessalonians talks about this as well. It is a very misunderstood chapter. We won’t spend a lot of time here, but we want to glean some things from this. We will start in verse 1 of II Thessalonians chapter 2. “Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”
There is only one being who can sit in the spiritual temple of God and take over our minds, and that is Satan. You could look at the Scriptures, like I said, in Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28, and you would see that it is Satan. Angels are often termed in the Bible as men, but people look for a specific individual. Usually it’s a tall, dark, Mediterranean person who is going to be the son of perdition! Here in II Thessalonians it is telling us that they were facing this power back then.
Continue reading in II Thessalonians 2, verse 5: “Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time.”
It was in existence then and was confusing people then as well.
Verse 7: “For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work…”
He is already trying to turn you away from the truth.
Continuing in verse 7: “…only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.”
That is Jesus Christ who is restraining the hand of Satan until a certain point in history.
Verse 8: “And then the lawless one…”
The King James Version refers to that as the “wicked” one who will be revealed. That is more correct.
Verse 8: “…whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.”
The wicked who believe these lies as you will see, will be taken to task by Jesus Christ when He comes.
Verse 9 of II Thessalonians 2: “The coming of the lawless one [wicked in the King James Version and lawless one in the New King James] is according to the working of Satan…”
These erroneous doctrines come from Satan—the one who sits in the temple of God showing himself that he is God.
Continuing in verse 9: “…with all power, signs, and lying wonders…”
We have covered that many times. You can go back and look at our literature on the true signs and wonders.
Verse 10: “…and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie…”
What is the righteousness that will avoid deception? We read it at the beginning. Keeping the commandments is righteousness. If we don’t want to get tricked, we keep the commandments of God. Keep the Sabbath day and the holy days. It keeps the plan of God in the forefront of our minds. It helps us walk the walk.
ASSAULT ON THE FAMILY
Let’s go back to Exodus chapter 20. Too bad so much of the world wants to ignore God’s laws. They are beautiful. They are perfect, converting the soul. Exodus 20, verse 12 is the fifth commandment: “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.”
Today the family is under assault in every Western nation. The whole concept of marriage is under assault. They are redefining family and redefining marriage, so it doesn’t require a father and a mother. It doesn’t require a husband and a wife. Entertainment mocks fatherhood, mocks marriage, and mocks family, and people laugh. God is not mocked.
Go to Galatians chapter 6. Once again keep your marker in Exodus. Galatians chapter 6, verse 3: “For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load.”
God looks at how we run our own life.
Continuing in verse 6 of Galatians 6: “Let him who is taught the word share in all good things with him who teaches. Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.”
If we sow mockery in marriage and family and mockery toward God by setting up idols in our lives, we are reaping and will reap what we sow. That’s what is happening. In every facet of our country’s situation, we are reaping what we have sown.
Exodus 20, verse 13: “You shall not murder.”
THE SIN OF ABORTION
Our nation should be ashamed of its hypocrisy and the sin of abortion. There is tremendous outcry every time there is a mass shooting. Politicians get up and say we need more laws this way or that way. We need to be stricter about this. We need to look into mental health of everybody. I heard one commentator who was a psychiatrist or psychologist say that every person who commits a crime should be examined by a psychiatrist and determined whether they could ever own a gun. You know how many millions and millions of people that is? Of course that would be a boon for psychiatrists. They never mention we are reaping what we sow because we are breaking the Ten Commandments and we are teaching people to break the Ten Commandments.
Here we have one that is so plain. We are all upset when somebody commits a mass shooting, but there is no outrage from the leaders of our country about abortion. As a matter of fact, most of them espouse it. Where is the outrage?
When there is a shooting, there are always survivors. Often there are heroes who stopped the shooting. You see the adults who rush the kids to safety. They can bar the doors. They can call 911. The police will come and stop it, so there is a limit to the carnage. It’s horrible, but there is a limit to the carnage. Babies can’t run! Babies can’t dial 911. Babies can’t do anything to defend themselves. There are some leaders, politicians, and groups that espouse partial birth abortion. It makes my skin crawl that a baby could be alive, killed, and that’s legal! Our laws are in direct violation of God’s laws, and our politicians say, God bless America. I got news for you. God cannot bless that! There are so many things that fall in line with that which are terrible.
We often point to China and say, their problem that is going to come to haunt them is the single child policy. There will be too many old Chinese, and they won’t be able to take care of themselves. The economy will collapse. You know the old saying, when you are pointing your finger at somebody, there are three pointing back. Some estimates say there have been 55 million abortions. I am not talking about those due to rape. I am talking about the vast majority of those for babies that just weren’t convenient to have. I don’t even like to call them fetuses because that makes it a little less terrible sounding. They are babies, and they are defenseless. They are waiting for our country to stand up for them. They can’t do a thing.
Continuing in Exodus 20, verse 13. “You shall not murder” is the sixth commandment, and we had better start observing it. Then maybe we can start being blessed.
Verse 14: “You shall not commit adultery.”
What is this with entertainment and this laughing off adultery and making it look like it’s funny? Adultery causes a lot of problems in our country. The breakdown of the family and society can be traced a lot of times to all this fooling around that’s going around, which leads to many of these shootings. It leads to a lot of angry young men standing on street corners with nothing to do and no father to give them any guidance. It’s crazy, yet they ignore the Ten Commandments.
It used to be difficult to get divorced and really looked down upon as a serious character flaw if one committed adultery. Now it’s a big joke in many circles.
Exodus 20, verse 15: “You shall not steal.”
We could go on all day about this. The theft, the way businesses trick people, investors trick people, thieves trick people, and hackers trick people out of their hard-earned money. It happens so routinely and by the millions of incidents a day. It’s crazy. I think they said every two seconds someone’s identity is stolen. It’s like a joke. We have become inured to it. We think this is normal. Everybody is out stealing, aren’t they? It shouldn’t be that way! There again, if we keep the Ten commandments and teach children to keep the Ten Commandments, we could start to reverse all of this.
Verse 16 of Exodus 20: “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”
Like I said earlier, lying is everywhere and accepted in our society. What that does is it breaks down trust. Individuals don’t trust each other. We don’t trust the businesses. We don’t trust our government. We don’t trust our institutions, and it’s because so many lies are being told every day. Even when you can tell it’s an obvious lie, people just go ahead and do it anyway in front of Congress, in front of the judge, and to each other! It is flagrantly breaking God’s Ten Commandments.
The last one is in verse 17 of Exodus 20: “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”
Put very simply, be satisfied with what we have.
THE COMMANDMENTS IN THE MILLENNIUM
At Christ’s return, all these laws will be enforced, and the world will have to keep them. There will only be one set of holy days. There will only be one Sabbath. The laws will be judged according to the Ten Commandments. You may be surprised to know that all these laws are enforced today, at this very time, but we have had the freedom to ignore them. We have the freedom to ignore them.
Turn to Hebrews chapter 13. We can choose from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, or we can choose from the tree of life. We are still totally free to do that. Hebrews chapter 13, verse 8: “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.”
His law is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Verse 9 goes on to say: “Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines.”
You could also throw in laws that go contrary to God’s law.
There are two more Scriptures I want to read you before I conclude. Turn to Isaiah chapter 26, verse 9: “With my soul I have desired You in the night, yes, by my spirit within me I will seek You early; for when Your judgements are in the earth the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.”
Eventually, and not very far off, these statues, these laws, the Ten Commandments will be enforced throughout the earth. They will be lived by, and the earth will experience peace. It’s the peace that so many people claim they want to have now, but without all those onerous laws! They are the laws that teach us how to worship God and how to love our fellow man.
We know it’s going to turn around. It’s going to turn very rapidly when it does start to turn, because there will be an innumerable multitude that will cry out. It will sound like thunder and mighty waters, and they will say the bride has made herself ready. It will be the righteous acts of the saints. It’s amazing. Some people realize, and we are among them, that faith without works is dead. We have to do something, and it’s our responsibility to use the blood of Christ wisely. We need to grow in character and do the things that would be pleasing to God like keeping the Ten Commandments, which are righteousness.
GET RIGHT WITH GOD
I want to close with II Chronicles, chapter 7, verse 14. It is beginning to be read around the country. II Chronicles 7, verse 14: “…if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
Those of us who have understanding need to turn to God and humble ourselves. Seek Him. Seek peace and pursue it earnestly, and He will bless our land. The blessing for the land will be that they will begin to understand that the Ten Commandments are what we need to observe. Following God’s laws will solve all these problems. They will know it in the Millennium, but millions upon millions are going to learn it before the Millennium starts! That’s why there is that song that goes up that the bride has made herself ready.
I think we live in the most awesome time in history that there ever was! It’s always darkest before the dawn. Things look really bleak right now, but God is about to turn that around in a most dramatic way! I do believe that with all my heart, and I am very pleased to share the Feast of Tabernacles with all of you. There is hope, so hang in there! Continue to keep God’s laws, and grow in righteousness.