CEC CANADA FOUNDATION ASSOCIATION
CHRISTIAN SCHOOLS AND CHURCHES
This page: When man agrees with God, good things begin to happen.
God's Strategy

To form Local Churches (Assemblies of Believers), and to have them co-work with Christ in his work both in and from the Community in which they have been established.

6. 1. First time the church comes to light.

Luke 24: 46 reads, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: 47. And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48. And you are witnesses of these things. 49. And, Behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but wait here in the city of Jerusalem, until you have been endued with power from on high.  What is most evident in these words is what is to be preached, repentance and remission of sins. Repentance is to turn from a life that falls far short of the glory of God, Romans 2: 23,  to a life that will glorify God, John 15: 8. Repentance is turning from ones sinful nature to a sinless nature which comes with the receiving of the Lord Jesus Christ, Christ in us the hope of glory, Colossians 1: 27. Remission of sins means being set free from sins of the old nature. The Psalmist writes, 103: 12. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

Here is a nutshell that should be registered on the heart of every saint, first to be comforted, and second to comfort others. Romans 6: 1. What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? This question arose from the previous verses, which say, 5: 19. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. 20. Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded grace did much more abound: 21. That as sin has reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

Paul’s answer, 6: 2. God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3. Know you not, that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4. Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of the his resurrection; 6. Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body on sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. 7. For he that is dead is freed from sin. 8. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: 9 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dies no more; death has no more dominion over him. 10. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he lives, he lives unto God. 11. likewise reckon yourselves also to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. 12. let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in the lusts thereof. 13. neither yield your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. 14. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the law, but under grace. ( Ephesians 2: 8. says, For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. 9. Not of works, lest any should boast. 10, for we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.) Verse 15. what then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. 16. Do you not know, that to whom you yield yourselves as servants, him you will obey, whether it is sin unto death, or obedience unto righteousness? 17. but God be thanked, that you were the servants of sin, but you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. 18. Being then made free from sin, you became the servants of righteousness. After all this it would be unfair to leave out, 2 Corinthian 5: 17 - 21 especially so because you have become servants of righteousness, it reads, 17. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away: behold all things have become new. 18. And all things are of God who has reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 19. To wit, that God was it Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and has committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 20. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be reconciled to God. 21. For he has made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

In Mark we have these words, chapter 16: 15. And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature, 16, He that believes and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believes not shall be damned.

The first thing we see the body of Christ doing, is bringing light into their surroundings no matter where they are in the world. This is the express purpose of their presence in the world. John 20: 21. Jesus speaking -  As my Father has sent me, even so send I you.

The first time the church was brought to light was in the gospel of Matthew 16: 18. But we begin with verse 13. When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? 14. And they said, Some say that you are John the Baptist, some, Elias, and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15. He said unto them, But whom do you say that I am? 16. And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17. And Jesus answered said unto him, Blessed are you, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood has not revealed it unto you, but my Father which is in heaven. 18. And I say also unto you, That you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19. And I will give unto you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

This writing of Matthew’s tells us a number of things, the first is the church was as yet not on the scene, the second, the church to be established would belong to Christ the Son of the Living God, the third, the church would be exposed to danger in its pursuit, the fourth, the church would prevail, and fifth, the church would have the powers to protect itself, it would have the keys to open  and to close the doors to the kingdom, they would have the authority to determine as to who would right to enter in, who would have to leave, and who would have the right to return. Scripture support: Matthew 18: 15 - 18, 1 Corinthians 5: 1 - 13,  2 Corinthians 6: 14,  Ephesians 5: 11, 1 Timothy 1: 20,  Psalm 109: 1 - 6,   Deuteronomy 13: 5, John 20: 23.

For evidence that this would happen we look to the book of Acts. The word church as in a local community church is first mentioned in Acts chapter 2 verse 47.

The second thing we see the word of God as what saves and gives new life to those who believe and are baptized.

The third thing we see in these two short verses is the urgency for saints to pickup their crosses in answer to the prayers of the many in their request for laborers to be send into the harvest of the Lord. Matthew writes and lets us know how Jesus responded when he saw a large crowd, Matthew 9: 35. And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. 36. But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. 37. Then said he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few; 38. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.

Matthew writes 28: 18. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying. All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. 20. teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo. I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. amen.

When is this to cease? Matthew records these words, chapter 24: 14. Jesus answers:  And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.

The aforesaid are the instructions Jesus left to the his Body, Church of God.

The support that the gathering of the people fell on Christ we find in the following scripture passages:

Genesis 49: 10. The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, not a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. Shiloh has been shown as Christ earlier on in this document.

Isaiah 60: 1. ARISE, SHINE; for your light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. 2. For , behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon you, and his glory shall be seen upon you. 3. And the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. 4. Lift upon your eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to you: your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side. 5. Then you shall see, and flow together, and your heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto you, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto you.

Isaiah 42: 1. Behold, My servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delights; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. 2. He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. 3. A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax  shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. 4. He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth; and the isles shall wait for his law. 5. Thus says God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which comes out of it; he that gives bread unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein. 6. I the LORD have called you in righteousness, and will hold your hand, and will keep you, and give you for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; 7. To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house. 8. I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images. The servant spoken of is Christ, he says, John 6: 38. For I came down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him that sent me.

The words that Christ would repeat: Much to the beginning of his suffering. Isaiah 61: 1. The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the LORD has anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he has sent me to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound. 2. To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD , and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; 3. To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them  beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.  See Luke 4: 18, 19, Christ identifies himself with the passage by reading it and then saying, 21. This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.

Christ is our example in every aspect of our Christian lives. Going into the world and taking the gospel to the world was no different. Here we look at his approach.

The first and most important was to preach the gospel. The second was his approach, foremost was his personal style with those near him, secondly  how related to others, and secondly how he related to the masses.

He speaks from the heart, he speaks as one that is crowned with his Father’s lovingkindness and mercy, love and compassion are his, salvation belongs to him, he speaks with authority.

6. 2. The body of Christ is the Church of God.

If there is anything that we have to convince people of, it is the Church, for it is the Body of Christ.  Romans 6: 3 teaches, we have been baptized into Christ, being all baptized into Christ is want unifies and makes us one in him, this is the Church of God, Romans 8: 9 teaches, if we do not have the Spirit of Christ we are none of his.

The Church would not have come into existence without first the work of Christ, that awork was to die for the sins of the world to set men free from sin and death, bthereby justifying man before God, secondly, to crise from the dead to give life to man in him. d Remission of sins, and life in Christ are free gifts, they must be received by faith, to those who believe and are exercised thereby become ethe righteousness of God in Christ, as such fmembers of his Body, the gChurch of God which he purchased with his own blood. The most encouraging part is, he has by his work given to man a picture, and not only a picture but also ha promise that his people will be raised from the dead that they might live forever with him.

a 1 John 2: 2, 1 John 4: 10,  Romans 3: 25,  Hebrews 8: 1 - 9: 28,  Leviticus 16: 1 - 34.

b Romans 3: 10 - 31, (v20, 24, 26, 28, 30),  Romans 4: 1 - 25, (v5, 25), Romans 5: 1 - 21, (v9, 16, 18). cLuke 24: 6, 34,  John 5: 21,   John 5: 21,   John 11: 25, 26,   John 6: 39 - 44.

dEphesians 2: 8. Romans 3: 24,  Titus 3: 7.   e2 Corinthians 5: 21, Romans 5: 17.

6. 3. The need for the Church of God.

CEC Canada is called to bring light to the world, a world that God tells us is sitting in darkness. It is not up to CEC Canada to determine what is light and what is darkness, this has been done for us. Every one that comes into the world comes into it with a candle, the spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, Proverbs 20: 27.  Adam failed God, as a result he had his candle put out, not only was his candle put out, he was sent away from the light that lit his candle, leaving him in darkness with no light to find his way.

Adam is the father of all human flesh, that includes you and me, we are his flesh and blood, we came into this world in his image, without God, sitting in darkness with an unlit candle, away from the light, without light to find our way back. How dark is that darkness? Speaking as an adopted son of God I can say, It was so dark that I was not conscious nor aware of the fact that I had an unlit candle waiting to be lit and to give me light, neither was I aware that there was a set of eyes waiting for me so that I would be able to see. I was like a worm that moves in the earth, as beast in the field, doing what I thought was right in our own eyes. I was not conscious nor aware of the fact that I was separated from God.

Proverbs 20: 27. Teaches “the spirit of man is the candle of the LORD” It also teaches the man without God is spiritually dead. The spirit of man is not dead, it is sitting in darkness, spiritually dead means, in short, God is not in the man who is sitting darkness to give him the light he needs to live a godly life, he cannot find his way into the Kingdom of God.

Jeremiah writes chapter 10: 23. O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walks to direct his steps. What is the true way of man? It is the life and the destiny that God has for man, What does it mean, It is not in man that walks to direct his steps? It centers around one thing, he does not have the light to do so.

What then has man left? God has left him to his own devices, and reap the consequences of a life without Him, a God that loves him and does not want him to suffer in darkness.  What man is left with is a spirit that gives no light leaving him to depend upon his natural instincts. That instinct first and foremost is survival at all cost doing what he thinks is right in his own eyes. It is this instinct had causes individuals and all groups of individuals to do the most dastardly things. This is the devil’s play ground, he know how to push the buttons of these people and to get them to follow through. Be warned he presents himself as an angel of light,  Satan came to kill, steal and to destroy, this is his domain. Scripture teaches two things, Satan is the god of this world, that is, this world of darkness. It also teaches, that God’s children are not children of darkness, but rather of Light, and that the devil cannot not touch them. The devil’s children live by the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and  the pride of life. God’s children live by the Faith of the Son of God to the glory of God. The Apostle gives his testimony and says, Galatians 2: 20. I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me, and the life that I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. He follows this and says, 21. I do not frustrate the grace of God. To the children of God, the apostle John writes, 1 John 2: 15. Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 17. And the world passes away, and the lust thereof, but he that does the will of God abides for ever.

6. 4. Who lights the candle that God has put into man?

The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, it belongs to him, Job writes: 34: 14. If he set his heart upon man, if he gather unto himself his spirit and his breath: 15. All flesh shall perish together, and man shall turn again into dust.

Christ told his disciples: John 8: 12. I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. John 1: 4. says, In him was life: and the life was the light of man. Here we have this picture, the unlit candle, the spirit of man we find must be lit and kept lit with the very presence of the life of Christ. God calls this a mystery that was kept away from everyone before the first coming of Christ. Colossians 1: 25 - 29. It is he that becomes the ever present and eternal flame that gives light to the man that receives him. It is he that promises, I will never leave you nor forsake you. John 1: 5. reads, And the light shined in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not. Verse 9. reads, He was the true Light, which lights every man that comes into the world. 10. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. 11. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12. But as many as received him, to them gave the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name. 14. Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

The Apostle writes, Romans 4: 25, Christ was delivered for our offenses, and was raised for our justification. 26. Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. 2. By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. The flame on the candle is the life of Christ in us that gives us light, we never need to sit in the darkness of our old nature again, this is being born again, it is also called the regeneration of the spirit and the renewal of the Holy Ghost, Galatians 4: 6. reads, Because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba Father. It is this life that makes it possible for us to be transformed into the likeness of Christ, it is this life that makes if possible for us to be partakers of God’s divine nature. What is God’s nature? He is Love, and his nature is to love. And what does this love do for God’s children? It first and foremost sets them free from the laws and the prophets. How is this true? Scripture teaches that loving one another is the fulfilling of the law, and that we in Christ are no longer bound by the law. What has made this possible? Scripture teaches that God crowns his people with his lovingkindness and mercy. The comfort in this is, although the law is righteous and good, our lives in Christ are not subject to its penalties. Why? Because we ourselves have been made the righteousness of God in Christ. Scripture teaches that we are to walk in the Spirit of Christ, never will the Spirit of Christ take us against the  righteousness of the law, for he came to fulfill the law. This is Christ in us the hope of glory Colossians 1: 27. Scripture teaches Ecclesiastes 12: 13. the whole duty of man is to revere God and to walk in his commandments. Israel was asked and then told, Deuteronomy 10: 12. what does the LORD you God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 13. To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command you this day for your good. Micah writes, 6: 8. He has shown you, O man, what is good, and what does the LORD require of you, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.

6. 5. But now you are light in the world,

Let your light so shine before men,

that they may see your good works,

and

glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Paul teaches, Galatians 5: 16. Walk in the Spirit and so you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. Verse 25 reads, If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Ephesians 5: 8. reads, You were sometimes darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, you are children of light, walk as children of light. 

What does “but now you are light in the Lord” mean? Jesus tells his disciples Matthew 5: 14. You are the light of the world, a city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. 15. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it gives light unto all that are in the house. 16. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

There are three things that you ought to understand and accept, the first, you are the light of the world, because you have the light, the life of Christ, and are no longer dead, you have become a presence in the world that reflects the life of Christ, making you worthy of being called a light in the world.

6. 6. You are the light of the world,

a city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.

Neither do men light a candle,

and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick;

and it gives light unto all that are in the house.

The second is, you do not hid the fact that you are a light in the world, the reflection of the light that you have become should reflect the holiness and perfection of Christ, God says, be holy for I am holy, and be perfect for I am perfect, this is the true reflection of Christ. The third is, you are to with deliberation as a prepared soldier for Christ follow his command and go into the world which he has entrusted you with, it is this that makes it possible to answer those who come to ask you about the hope that you have in you. This is being a Light in the World. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5: 16.

6. 7. The Believer’s life on earth,

Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit.

 A light is not hid under a bushel. John 15: tells us that God’s life originates in the Father, he tells us that his life flows from him to Christ, and from Christ to his people, and from his people into the world, the visible evidence is the disciples as lights in the world. It is this that makes it possible for the world to see your good work, and to glorify the Father which is in heaven.  John 15: 1. I AM the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. 2. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that bears fruit he purges it that it may bring forth more fruit. 3. Now you are clean through the word which I have spoken to you. 4. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine, no more can you accept you abide in me. 5. I am the vine you are the branches, he that abides in me, and I in him, the same brings much fruit, for without me you can do nothing. 6. If a man does not abide in me, he is cast forth as a branch as is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. 7. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you. 8. Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit, so shall you be my disciples.

Verse 6 has been a stumbling block for many, believing that they can loose their salvation. In the overall context of verse 1 to verse 8, we do not see it to mean that a son of God can loose his salvation, what we do see is this, the Father owns all of mankind, those that believe and those that do not believe, whom we see being cast into the fire are the unbelieving.

Within the writing of chapter 15 there are two key verses that elude to the fact that fruit bearing to glorify God is what the believer’s life on earth is all about.

Verse 8. Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit,------

Verse 16. You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit,-----

6. 8. God the Father has included man

 to join his Son in the gathering of his people.

What is very evident in John’s chapter fifteen is this, God the Father has included man to join his Son in the gathering of his people. Excerpts: Genesis 49: 10. to him shall the gathering of his people be, Matthew 1: 21. he shall save his people from their sins, John 15: 27. you also shall bear witness, Matthew 28: 19. Go ye therefore and teach all nations, Mark 16: 15. Go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

6. 9. God empowers his people before sending them out into the world.

Luke 24: 49. but wait here in the city of Jerusalem, until you are endued with power on high, John 16: 7. It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you, but if I depart, I will send him unto you, Acts 1: 8. ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and you shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. Acts 2: 3. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. 4. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, John 17: 14. I have given them your word, 15. I pray that you keep them from evil, 18, as you have sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

6. 10. Christ our example, sends, and warns.

The mission of the twelve apostles.

The first time the church was brought to light was in the gospel of Matthew chapter 16: verse 18.

Behold I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves, be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.

The mission of the Seventy.

Luke 10: 1 - 16, V3.

Go your ways: behold I send you forth as lambs among wolves.

Jesus has ascended up into heaven, with a promise of return.

Acts 1: 9. And when he had spoken these things, while they were watching, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11. Which also said, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? this Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as you have seen him go into heaven.

6. 11. Jesus, the Son of man, is sitting

 at the right hand of his Father in heaven.

Hebrews 1: 1 - 14, V 1 - 3.

Hebrews 1: 1. God who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, 2. Has in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he has appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; 3. Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; Chapter 10: 12 reads, But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God.

6. 12. Jesus a continuing help to his servants.

Hebrews 7: 25. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come to God by him, seeing he ever lives to make intercession for them.

6. 13. The servants of God are in good hands.

Romans 8: 26. Likewise the Spirit also helps our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself makes intercession of us with groanings which can not be uttered. 27. And he that searches the hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

6. 14. The servants being sent into the world do not go alone.

1 Corinthians 3: 9. For we are laborers together with God: you are God’s husbandry, you are God’s building. 2. Corinthians 6: 1. We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that you receive not the grace of God in vain. Romans 6: 13. We believe we have become instruments of righteousness in the hands of God. Proverbs 11: 4. We believe that righteousness of God delivers from death (Genesis 7: 1). Acts 14: 27. And when they came, and had gathered the church together, they rehearsed all that God had done with them, and how he had opened the door of faith unto the Gentiles. Acts 15: 4. And when they came to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them.

6. 15. The coming of Christ for his church.

As Christ ascended in the clouds towards heaven so he will descend in the clouds towards earth to receive the church unto himself. Also known as the rapture of the church.

1 Thessalonians 4: 15. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16. For the Lord himself shall descent from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

6. 16. The Apostle Peter’s first sermon.

Acts chapter 2 verses 14 to 40, V36.

Therefore let all of the house of Israel know assuredly, that God has made that same Jesus, whom you have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

6. 17. The birth of the church.

Acts chapter 2 verses 41 to 47, v41, 47.

V41. Then they gladly received his word, were baptized: and the same day there was added unto them about three thousand souls. 42. And they continued steadfastly in the Apostle’s doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44. and all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45. And sold their possession and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.  46. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, 47. Praising God, and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.

6. 18. The foundation and chief cornerstone of the church.

The Apostle Paul explains: Ephesians 2: talking about the division between the Jew and the Gentile and what it took to bring to two together as one. Talking to the Gentile he said. 12. That at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world. 13. But now in Christ Jesus you who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ, 14. For he is our peace, who has made both one. and has broken down the middle wall of partition between us. 15. Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of two one new man, so making peace. 16. And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: 17. And came and preached peace to you which were far off, and to them that were nigh. 18. For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.  19. Now therefore you are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God: 20. And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; 21. In whom all the building fitly framed together grows up into a holy temple in the Lord. 22. In whom you also are built together for a habitation of God through the Spirit.

6. 19. The persecution of the church.

John 16: 33. Jesus speaking, These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. 2 Timothy 3: 12. Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

6. 20. Determinate resistance in an effort to stop the church.

Acts 4: 1 - 5: 42.

Acts 4: 18. And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 19. But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more then to God, you judge. 20. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. 

The apostle ends up in prison. Acts 5: 17. Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with them, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation, 18. and laid there hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison. 19. But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, 20. Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of life.

6. 21. Stephen becomes the first martyr, he is stoned to death.

Acts 6: 5 - 7: 60, V58 - 60.

Verse 54. When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth. 55. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God. 56. And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. 57. Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord. 58. And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at the young man’s feet whose name was Saul. 59. And they stoned Stephen, he calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. 60. And kneeled down and cried with a loud voice Lord, lay not this sin to there charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

6. 22. Think not strange concerning fiery trials which are the try you.

1 Peter 4: 12. Beloved think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 13. But rejoice, inasmuch as you are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, you may be glad also with exceeding joy. 14. If you be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are you; for the spirit of glory and of God rests upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.

6. 23. The Victor’s crown.

Revelations 2: 10. Fear none of those things which you shall suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you in prison, that you may be tried; and you shall have tribulation ten days: you be faithful unto death, and I will give you a crown of life.

6. 24. True soldiers are prepared to sacrifice their lives.

The Apostle Paul had this to say, Romans 8. 14. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. 15. For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 16. The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 17. And if children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. 18. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

6. 25. Saul, a soldier belonging to the enemy.

It would take Christ to steal him from his enemy and put him to use.

Acts 7: 58, 8: 1 - 4,  9: 1 - 31.

This soldier would later say:

Philippians 3: 7. But what things were gain to me, those things I count but loss for Christ. 8. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss, for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ. 9. And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10. That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11. if by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 12. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect; but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. 13. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14. I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

6. 26. Christ and the Gentiles, his inheritance, Psalm 2: 8.

The LORD telling of his Lord, the Lord Jesus Christ, Isaiah 42: 1. Behold my servant, whom I uphold, mine elect, in whom my soul delights; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. (A Gentile is a Non-Jewish person.)

Isaiah 49: 6. And he said, it is a light thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel, I will also give you for a light to the Gentiles, that you may be my salvation unto the ends of the earth.

Isaiah 60: 1. Arise, Shine; for your light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. 2. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon you, and his glory shall be seen upon you. 3. And the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings  to the brightness of your rising. 4. Lift up your eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to you: your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side. 5. Then you shall see, and flow together, and your heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto you, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto you.

Matthew 12: 18. Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall show judgment to the Gentiles. 19. He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear his voice in the streets. 20. A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory. 21. And in his name shall the Gentiles trust.

Daniel 7: 13. I saw in the night visions, and behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. 14. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.

6. 27. The Lord sends the Apostle Paul to the Gentiles.

Acts 9: 15. But the Lord said unto him, Go your way, for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Act 13: 46. The Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing you put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. 47. for so has the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set you to be a light of the Gentiles, that you should be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. 48. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and glorified the word of the Lord, and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. 49. And the word of the Lord was published throughout the region.

Jesus Wept
Is God finished with Jacob, the man we know as Israel? God forbid.

6. 28. Thou art my servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified.

“In whom I will be glorified” are the most poignant words we have from the Lord, assuring us that he is not finished with them, there are a number of scripture passages that clearly tell us He is not finish with his people Israel, here are some of them, but first, the reason for them having been set aside.

Israel is a picture for all of us of what can happen to us when we grieve the Holy Spirit. This was their problem, and this was why they eventually ended up being set aside, they would not listen and they would not believe. Sooner or later the Holy Spirit will leave us to our own devices if we as children rebel and grieve the Holy Spirit. Israel hardened its heart and continually grieved the Holy Spirit. The writer to the Hebrews gives us this account, the purpose for the account is to warned us not to hardened our hearts.

Hebrews 3: 1. Wherefore holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus. 2. Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house. 3. For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who built the house had more honor then the house. 4. For every house is built by some man; but he that built all things is God. 5. And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after; 6. But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end. 7. Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost says, Today if you will hear his voice, 8. Harden not our hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: 9. when your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. 10. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do always err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. 11. So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) 12. Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. 13. But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. 14. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end; 15. While it is said, Today if you will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation. 16. For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. 17. But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness? 18. And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to  them that believed not? 19. So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief. Chapter 4: 1. Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, and of your should seem to  come short of it. 2. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. 3. For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. 4. For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works. 5. And in this place again, if they shall enter into my rest. 6. Seeing therefore it remains that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: 7. Again, he limited a certain day, say in David, Today, after so long a time; as it is said, “Today if you will hear his voice, harden not your hearts. 8. For if Jesus have given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. 9. There remains therefore a rest to the people of God. 10. For he that is entered into his rest, he also has ceased from his own works, as God did from his. 11. Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.

King David’s Summary: Psalm 78: 1 - 72, V37 - 42.

Verse 37. For their heart was not right with him, neither were they steadfast in his covenant. 38. But he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath. 39. For he remembered that they were but flesh; a wind that passes away, and comes not again. 40. How oft did they provoke him in the wilderness, and grieve him in the desert! 41. Yea, they turned back and tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel. 42. they remembered not his hand, nor the day when he delivered them from the enemy.

The nation Israel made its choice, the most evident of this choice was their final rejection of the very one that came through them and to them to save them from the world by which they were besieged, a world of darkness.  In spite of this, God did not change his mind in that he would be glorified in them, his only option left to save his own unbelieving children was to conclude them in sin with the Gentiles, so that he would be able to save them by the manner set for the Gentiles, Ephesians 2: 8. For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. 9. Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.

Israel had the LORD, their situation was not much different then that of Adam’s. Adam’s person brought in corruption and corrupted his house, Israel, like Adam had its people bring in corruption and corrupted the entire nation. Both had their candles put out, and both were separated from the very light that were theirs. Both had generations follow them in the darkness. This is the world we live in today, the Gentile in darkness, and the Israelite in the same darkness. And we must emphasis, with hope.

The Apostle Paul gives us his account. This account that makes it clear that there is hope both for the Jew and the Gentile.

 Romans 10: 1 - 21 & 11:1 - 36. V10: 9 - 13 & 11: 25 - 32.

10: 9. ------- if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved. 10. For with heart man believes unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11. For the scripture says, whosoever believes on him shall not be ashamed. 12. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek; for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. 13. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. In chapter 11, we have these words, 25. For I would not, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own conceits, that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles is come in. 26. And so all Israel shall be saved as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 27. For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. 28. As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the father’s sakes. 29. For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. 30. for as you in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief: 31. Even so have these also not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy. 32. For God has concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.

6. 29. The restoration of Israel in prophecy.

Jeremiah 30: 1 - 31: 40,

C30: 3. For lo, the days come, says the LORD, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, says the LORD: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.

C31: 31. Behold, the days come, says the LORD, that I will make  a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 32. Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, says the LORD: 33. But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, says the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them ;unto the greatest of them, says the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

Psalm 122: 6. King David.

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love you.

6. 30. The planting of churches.

Acts 13: 42 - 28: 24.

The Apostle Paul was called to preach to the Gentiles, for his journey we go to the book of Acts. We begin at Acts 13: 46. Then Paul and Barnabas spoke boldly, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing you put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. 47. For so has the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set you to be a light of the Gentiles, that you should be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. 48. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord, and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. 49. And the word of the Lord was published throughout the region. 50. But the Jews stirred up the devout and honorable women, and the chief men of the city, and raised persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them out of their coasts. 51. But they shook off the dust off their feet against them, and came unto Iconium. The rest of the book of Acts centers on the life of the Apostle Paul as a preacher to the Gentiles and church planter amongst them. His successes can be known through the reading of the last half of the book of Acts. It is Paul that sets the example for all of God’s servants to answer this call “Mark 16: 15. Go ye therefore into all the world and preach the gospel teach every creature” The following passages show the willingness of the Gentiles to hear the gospel. Although the Apostle had difficulty, he did not allow this to discourage him, in fact he worked all the harder, and was ready to face death if it had to be.

13: 48. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord, and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.

49. And the word of the Lord was published throughout the region.

14: 27. And when they were come, and had gathered the church together, they rehearsed all that God had done with them, and how he had opened the door of faith unto the Gentiles.

15: 4. And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them.

16: 5. And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily.

19: 20. So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.

20: 22. Paul an unrelenting soldier: And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: 23. Save that the Holy Ghost witnesses in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me. 24. But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify  the gospel of the grace of God. 25. And now, behold, I know that you all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more. 26. Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. 27. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. 28. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost has made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he has purchased with this own blood.

28: 28. Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it. 29. And when he had said these words, the Jews departed, and had great reasoning among themselves. 30. And Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that came unto him. 31. Preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man  forbidding him.

Of these verses there is one verse to which we want to draw your attention. We believe this was what lay behind the success of the Apostle Paul’s life for God, it is Acts 20: 27. It reads, For I have not shunned to declare unto all the full counsel of God.

Genesis 18: 17. reads - And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do: 19. Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 20. For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he has spoken of him.

John 15: 15. ---for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.

Psalm 25: 14. reads- The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will show them his covenant.

Proverbs 3: 32. His secret is with the righteous.

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