What does ‘This Generation’ mean?

Jesus said: Assuredly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.

Jesus prophesied these unforgettable words to four of his disciples on the Mount of Olives as recorded in Matthew 24:34, Mark 13:30 and Luke 21:30.

It is critical to understand which generation Jesus meant. Taking the plain meaning without any bias, Jesus was referring to his own generation—the generation of his listeners there on the Mount of Olives.

But some scholars say Jesus must have meant a future generation. 

Some others insist that Jesus meant the word “race”,  i.e., the Hebrew race. They reason that because the Hebrew race remains today, the coming of Jesus has not taken place, putting his coming far into the unknown future.

These scholars avoid the obvious meaning in the context of the gospel, dogmatically committed to a future return of Jesus, instead of simply accepting that Jesus spoke of the relative closeness of His coming.

Jesus prophesied to those disciples on the Mount of Olives, that He would return before His hearers’ generation had passed away. Yet many of the same scholars and teachers have no problem in accepting that Jesus spoke literally about the coming fall of the Jerusalem temple.

So then there is no logical reason to exclude the plain fact that Jesus spoke of his soon coming.

Further, there is no doubt the disciples took Jesus’ words “this generation” to mean soon, at the door, at hand. They knew His coming was imminent, perhaps even in their lifetime. We see it in their writings.

Their letters in the N.T. frequently reflect their expectancy of a soon coming, though the hour and day were unknown. We read of their warnings, their urgency to proclaim the gospel of the Kingdom of God and their urgings for their readers to live righteously.

They knew Jesus warned them to get the Kingdom proclaimed in the towns of Judea before His coming (Matthew 10:23).

Check these references out for yourself: Rom 13:11-13, 1 Cor 10:11, Phil 1:6,10, 1 Thes 1:10, 4:17; 2 Thes 1:7; 2 Tim 3:1; Heb 1:2, 9:28, 10:29; Jas 5:3; 1 Pet 1:5, 7-9, 13, 17, 20; 2 Pet 3:3; Jude 19).

Now let’s look at only a few instances of Jesus’ phrase this generation in the gospels, paying close attention to the context of each. You will see they consistently refer to the people alive then as Jesus spoke.

Mat 12:45. . . the last of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.

Mat 12:41-42. The men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation at the judgment, and will condemn it because they repented. . . The Queen of the South will rise up with this generation at the judgment. . .

Mark 8:12. Why does this generation seek . . sign? Truly I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.

Mark 8:38 : “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels”.

Jesus warned people in that crowd that some of them, this generation, will be alive ‘when He comes in glory!  He said this generation not that generation.

Luke 17:25. But first he must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.

Mat 17:17. O faithless generation, how long shall I bear with you . .  

Here he referred to the crowd who had no faith to heal.

Mat 23:35-36. Assuredly, I say unto you, all these things will come upon this generation.

That phrase is repeated in Mat 24:34, Mark 31:30, and Luke 21:30.

Mat 24:34f, Mk 13:30f, Lu 21:30f. NKJV. Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.

In all three synoptic gospels! And all three carry the word assuredly! (Grk amen) and the affirmation that though heaven and earth could pass away, his words stand forever!

So who would dare to change his plain words?

In Mat 23 we read Jesus’ savage attacks on the Jewish ruling elites of that current generation: Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  Then after the 7 woes, we read verses 31-36:

Therefore you are witnesses against yourselves that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers’ guilt. Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell? Therefore, indeed, I send you prophets, wise men, and scribes: some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city, that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. Assuredly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation.

Further, this particular generation was condemned to such a great extent, that Jesus warned those weeping women as He was led to the cross saying: Weep not for me but for yourselves and your children . . . as he knew what terrible times they would face (Luke 23:28).

Conclusion

In the Olivet discourse of Matthew, Mark and Luke, the generation named by Jesus can only mean the generation of people Jesus was addressing.

We can see that this is consistent with the other numerous references of his using the phrase this generation.

There is no logical or hermeneutical reason why we should not believe and accept that Jesus spoke literally about “all these things will come upon this generation.” (Mat 24:34).

The letters in the New Testament frequently reflect the expectancy of a soon coming, though the hour and day were unknown. We read of their warnings, their urgency to proclaim the gospel of the Kingdom of God and their urgings for their readers to live righteously.

Craig’s Amazing Story

I read this story today on “Praying Medic” Telegram channel. Extraordinary.

On Tuesday 11 April 2023 I experienced a near-drowning, and it was only through the intercession of God that myself and my young son survived and are alive today. My family (wife and two sons) were on a short family holiday on the South Coast of New South Wales. We were on the last day of our holiday and I took our sons to the beach to play and go for a swim in the surf.

Surf conditions on the day were not good, and at nearby Shellharbour, there was a swell of 10 feet (3.1 metres) on the day. We played safely in the shallow surf about 5 metres or less from the shore for 1-2 hours. I could see sand being churned heavily about 10 metres to the right of us and assumed this was a strong rip which was being generated by the heavy swell and strong currents.

We steered clear of this area. My eldest son asked if we could go deeper into the water, and against my better judgement, I agreed. We waded out a few more metres, and unbeknownst to me, the rip was wider and stronger than expected, and we were both caught in the rip. We were both ocean-facing and were unaware that we were in the rip for about 30-60 seconds, until we could not touch the bottom (the rip had pulled out all the sand from the sandbar).

I turned around and saw we were about 30 metres from shore. I quickly realised the gravity of the situation and knew we were in the rip (my family and I have watched probably too many episodes of Bondi Rescue over the years). I raised my hand to signal for help and yelled to my youngest son and one other person on the beach for help. My hand was in the air for maybe 5-10 seconds, and I yelled at my son to “swim across!” to try and escape the rip.

As my hand was in the air, a local man called Dean (who was a former lifesaver) was driving by together with his wife, who was a former nurse. They were driving on a road that overlooks the beach, when they saw myself and my son in the rip. He recognised my hand in the air as a sign of distress, and they quickly pulled over and he ran down to the beach. My son and I are good swimmers, but the strength of the rip going back out to the ocean combined with the relentless large waves on top resulted in us being constantly rolled under – like being in a washing machine.

After what seemed like 5-10 minutes of struggling in the rip, I was taking in significant amounts of water and could not surface for air. I remembered thinking “I didn’t think I would go out this way.” I knew I had about 1-2 minutes of life left, and the faces of my family – my wife and my two sons – flashed before me underneath the waves. I felt pangs of regret that I would not be there to see them grow up. I have read stories about fathers who die and leave their wife and children behind. I did not want to be one of those fathers.

Though I was not afraid of dying. As a deeply spiritual person, I look forward to returning home to God when He calls me, and I have read of many beautifully divine near-death experiences over the decades. But I felt it was not my time. I had a choice between giving up and leaving this life or fighting and staying here. For my family, I made the choice to stay. I came to the surface and prayed to God for help.

I remember stretching my left arm out in a short break between the waves and looking up at the clouds. My prayer for help was not strong; it was desperate and failing. Shortly after, another set of waves pummelled and rolled me underneath the waves, and I came up one last time.

At that moment, Dean appeared in the waves next to me. I didn’t know who he was or where he came from, but I could tell he was a strong swimmer and I felt my prayer was answered. He told my son and I to lie on our backs (to help conserve energy and to also try and help float closer to shore with the help of the breaking waves).

Dean had to make the difficult choice of saving my son or I, as the rip and the surf were too strong and he was unable to save both of us at the same time. He had to make a choice about who had the best chance of survival, and he made the right choice and went to save my son.

One more set of waves rolled over me, and I remember being tossed around in the ocean like a rag doll. I could not reach the surface for air, and at this moment I lost consciousness and blacked out under the waves. Eyewitnesses told me that Dean grabbed my son as he laid on his back in the surf and swam with him across the rip, and then fought their way back to near shore, to a point where my son could stand on the sand and rocks and get to the beach himself.

Dean turned back to the ocean and could see I was still in the waves, but he realised that if he attempted to swim out and rescue me, that he would likely not survive himself as he was heavily fatigued and had taken in seawater himself in the first rescue.

Over the next 5 to 10 minutes as I was unconscious in the waves, I was somehow pulled sideways out of the rip (which should have taken me further out to sea, which is where rip currents normally flow) and carried across another stretch of water where I was positioned closer to some nearby rocks which extended from the beach out into the water. From the shore, Dean realised he had a chance to get closer and ran out onto the rocks.

Another set of waves broke – which could have taken me further out, or closer to the rocks. By the grace of God, they carried me directly towards Dean, and at that moment the waves stopped and the sea pulled back to reveal a rock ledge that Dean was able to step down on and reach out to grab me. He pulled me out of the surf and dragged me back across the rocks to safety.

By this time some others had gathered on the beach, and two other men ran out onto the rocks to assist Dean in helping to carry me back across the rocks to the beach. I was brought to the shore, and as I hit the sand I regained consciousness. I struggled to breathe and I had taken in a lot of water, but I was alive. My rescuer(s) carried me further up the beach to a local lifesaver, who had come across from a neighbouring beach with an oxygen tank. My oxygen levels were critically low and Dean’s wife (a former nurse) assisted with administering oxygen.

I began to recover and vomited heavily a number of times to expel the seawater from my stomach. By this time paramedics had arrived (three ambulances) along with police (three cars) as well as a helicopter. Paramedics assisted in stabilising me, and I was loaded into an ambulance for transfer to the local base hospital. I was taken to the emergency department where I was put on a high flow oxygen ventilator and given other treatment to help bring my oxygen levels back to normal. I had swallowed a lot of seawater and my left lung had partially collapsed and had taken in water. I also suffered kidney failure and the doctors said later that the initial blood test analysis resembled someone who was clinically dead and resuscitated. After three days in hospital recovering, I was discharged, and I am now home and fully recovered.

I am grateful. God’s Hand was evident in many ways on that day. From Dean (a former lifesaver) passing at the exact time I had my hand in the air for help and then turning up in the waves less than a minute after praying for help, to him rescuing my son and then having the ocean carry me directly to him for a second rescue, God saved our lives that day. The waves should have smashed me against the rocks, but the waves were stilled. The sea made way for me to be pulled out of the ocean and rescued. I was dragged across rocks away from the surf and my back should have been full of cuts and bruises, but my back was unmarked.

Hospital doctors said my blood test results resembled someone who was clinically dead and then resuscitated (though no resuscitation was performed). The emergency department doctors told my wife I would likely be on oxygen for at least a couple of weeks (if not months). By God’s grace (and the many prayers that were offered for me) I was on oxygen for only two days. My lungs were healed quickly and my kidneys have regained full working function.

The message in all of this is that we need to trust and surrender to God, all of the time – and not just call to Him when we are in trouble. Start your day with prayer and surrender. Bend your knee before Him first thing in the day and invite Him into your life. Ask Him to be part of your day and guide and protect you in everything you do.

The currents of life will sometimes carry you in unexpected directions, but He can lift you out of danger and carry you to safety. The sea obeyed His command without question that day, and when you give God power to act in your life, miracles can happen. PRAISE GOD.

The Judgment of the Sheep and Goats

We read in Matthew 24, Jesus’ disciples asked Him two questions (Mat 24:3) and we read His answers in what is known as the Olivet Discourse which runs from Mat 24:4 and ends in Mat 26:1. We read many promises, encouragements and warnings in answer to His disciples’ questions.

Remember the original Greek has no chapters and there is no break in the discourse—the three parables in Matthew 25 are certainly part of the Olivet Discourse and in it Jesus gives some light to the disciples’ question “when will these things be . . . ?” (Mat 24:3a)

Like the other parables of Jesus in the Olivet Discourse, this parable is set in the context of Israel and the Jews and belongs to when Jesus returns. The scenes are Jewish, of Israel, not worldwide. Jesus words are addressed to the Jews of His day, not to us! The scriptures are written FOR us not to us

These parables are part of the encouragements Jesus gave to his disciples to not give up.

Many scholars say this as a reference to “the last judgment” which they place at the end of history. Does scripture ever say this? Does the Bible even call it The Last Judgment? I think not. This judgment passage is contextually set in the coming of Jesus: “when the Son of Man comes . . . .

Who are the people of these two groups?  They are certainly not us today!

These represent people who had claimed to follow Jesus. Both ‘sheep’ and ‘goats’ were in the ‘sheepfold’ of the ekklesia. But when “the chief shepherd appears (his coming) who knows his own sheep and calls them by name” (John 10:27), he could easily separate the sheep from the goats.

Of course, Scripture teaches that all people who ever have been or shall be in the world will be judged. But what is described in this passage and demanded by the context, only concerns the many 1000’s who had  opportunity to react to Jesus’ words or to the ministry of ‘his brothers’ before his return (see John 1:11f).

So just who are ‘the least of these brothers of mine’ who are represented in this parable?

Consistently throughout the Gospel of Matthew, these are those who do His Father’s will (e.g., Mat 12:49-50). It refers to those who carry the good news of the Kingdom of God, Jesus’ disciples, His representatives, from the greatest to the least. Thus He told the disciples (Mat 10:1-42), not to take provisions with them but to rely on the hospitality of those who would receive them in His name. He ends declaring, “And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.” (Mat 10:42) Not just the ‘least’ but ‘anyone’!

See Hebrews 2:11,17: “He is not ashamed to call His own ‘His brothers”. Note also Acts 9:4-5 where Jesus identified with persecuted believers saying to Saul “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.”

It is a serious error to teach that Jesus in this parable meant the poor and disadvantaged. Of course, Jesus’ people are called to render help to anyone in need. Paul put it well: So then, while we have opportunity, let’s do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.”

Jesus spoke these words on the Mt of Olives that day, to encourage the disciples, reminding them of the sufferings and persecutions they would endure (Mat 10, 24:9-13). In the days to come, many would come to their aid when they are imprisoned, thirsty, homeless, naked, etc. The Book of Acts and the apostles’ letters record numerous instances of this. Likewise many would reject them and even persecute them.

Take away: Be encouraged in following Jesus and be active supporting those who are His representatives!

Jesus’ Return–When, What Do You Expect?

Did you know this? Jesus prophesied to his disciples many awesome, enormous, life-changing events would take place within the lifetime of his Jewish contemporaries: Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. (Mat 24:34) ‘All these things’ included:
the once ever, terrible great tribulation
the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, judgment on the very heart of Judaism
the awesome appearing of the sign of the Son of Man (Jesus) in the sky
the mourning and distress of the tribes (i.e., the Jews) of the land (i.e., Judea)
the unimaginable sight of the Messiah coming on the clouds with power and great glory. (24:30)

What then did those apostles expect from those words of Jesus spoken on the Mount of Olives that day?

The letters of the NT bear consistent statements showing that they believed Jesus’ return was close, coming within the lifetime of many, just as he promised. Dozens of statements by these authors demand a change in our thinking. Here are just a few: Acts 2:14-20; 1 Cor 10:11; Heb 1:2, 9:26, 1 Pet 1:20. All these texts limit them to the first century. Peter wrote “the end of all things was at hand” for him and his readers (1 Pet 4:7). John insisted that it was the “last hour” (1 John 2:18).

I have some questions to ask you if you are still waiting for Jesus’ return.

First. If his coming was close for them, how can it be close for you, 2000 years later on? That’s nonsense!

Second. Were Jesus and the writers of the New Testament mistaken? Yes? No?

Third. Just what are you expecting to experience at the return of Jesus? The end of the world, history, time?

    Look. That is a man-made idea. The ‘end’ or ‘last days’ in the NT refers to the end of an era, an age, not the end of time or the end of the world! This is a terrible stumbling block to people reading and understanding the meaning of Jesus’ words. The original text is not confusing or unclear about the meaning of ‘end’. The Jews thought in terms of ‘this age’ and the ‘age to come’ (e,g., Mat 12:32).

    Fourth. Just what do you expect to see at the return of Jesus? A physical Jesus coming on the clouds?

      The NT teaches that He forever sits at the right hand of power, masked by dark clouds of glory and “who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see” (1 Tim 6:16). Seeing him, John fell ‘like a dead man’ (Rev 1:17). Many assume he would be seen by human eyes and so then imagine he has not yet come. Deception! That’s another man-made idea. Now, we hear this absurd idea that at the end of the age, the earth /universe will undergo a radical renovation and the righteous of the ages, physically resurrected from the dead, will live on this “restored” earth. Is that what you believe? Where is the Biblical evidence?

      History tells us what was actually seen by people in the first century, AD66:

      A star resembling a sword; a comet for a whole year; At the feast of unleavened bread, during the night, a bright light shone round the altar and the temple, so that it seemed to be bright day, for half an hour; a few days after that feast “Before sunset chariots and troops of soldiers in their armor were seen running about among the clouds, and surrounding of cities.” Josephus, Jewish Wars, b.6, 9, 3.

      The Roman historian Tacitus reported “There had been seen hosts joining battle in the skies, the fiery gleam of arms, the temple illuminated by a sudden radiance from the clouds. The doors of the inner shrine were suddenly thrown open, and a voice of more than mortal tone was heard to cry that the Gods were departing. At the same instant there was a mighty stir as of departure.”

      Now, I hear from people who just long to leave this planet, and to be free of bodies that are sick and broken. The mainstream news depresses people and news of loss, tragedy and WW3 threats can be overwhelming. Many are discouraged by the delayed Rapture. It’s 50 years since ‘The Late Great Planet Earth’ was published. Keeping the faith becomes more challenging for them each day. They cry ‘will Jesus EVER rescue us from this dreadful world gone haywire?”

      That’s why many believers have a negative mindset. That doesn’t help anyone. That’s why so many are so darkened in the mind focusing on the bad all the time, mocking those that see Jesus ruling for ever. All they do is proclaim the inevitable victory of evil. There is a dark veil over their mind. Their focus is on the evil in this world, and not on the glorious gospel and Kingdom of God which triumphs and is eternal.

      Do you reject scripture if it goes against your denomination? or have you been programmed to see things by “group think” within your evangelical tradition? Cognisant dissonance? Are you reading the NT as if it were spoken TO you and not the original readers in context? No. We must understand how the original audience would have understood the texts. But the purveyors of error insist that it was written to us, arguing that prophecies and events from the 1st century are to be fast-forwarded to our day! That’s nonsense, right?

      We need to change our thinking from bad teachings and this deadly escape theology, these ‘get me outta here’ attitudes. Doom and gloom. This may be difficult for many, I get it. Everyone needs to realise that we have been lied to—the greatest deception being about Jesus’ return. If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God (Col 3:1). That’s where He is right now and that’s where our victory lies! (Rev 1:5) Let’s start living joyously in the Kingdom of God!

      Is One Greater Than Another?

       by Deborah Waldron Fry

      I have heard this saying before, that because someone has a “special” Anointing on their life, the enemy attacks them or their children more than others.

      Another saying is, “Higher levels, different devils!”

      I think many of you have heard this too and wondered about it.  This has always bothered me, because what parent would ever cause their children to have a target on their back, because of what they are called to do, whether it be apostle, or prophet, or evangelist, or pastor or teacher?

      So I brought it to Father in prayer, asking, “Show me, Father, if this is true, I really need to know and others want to know.  And Father, in Jesus name, show us how to combat those attacks if true.”

      And I heard the Sweet Loving Voice of the Father ask, “Is one of My Child’s Anointing, greater than another?”

      “Well, LORD, we who are born again all have the same Holy Spirit in us, so I don’t think so.  We are ALL anointed.”

      “Yes, My Child, when you are in Christ you are a “Christian” — which means “Little anointed one.”

      It means you are LIKE CHRIST.  No one in My Kingdom has a “special” anointing, you are ALL ANOINTED by the Precious Holy Spirit. T here is no anointing greater or higher.

      Is one gift or calling greater than another?  There is a variety of gifts, but the same Spirit, none is better than another, for ALL are needed.  There is a variety of service and activities but it is the same Lord who empowers all

      A Body is made up of many members.  Each one needed and important.  I arrange the members in the Body, each one of them, as I choose.

      If all were a single member, where would the body be?  It could not function.  As it is, there are many parts, yet one Glorious Body with Christ as the Head.

      You are ALL My Body and you are ALL important, Beloved.  I have anointed you with The Holy Spirit and FIRE!

      You all have a calling to be My Light in the darkness.  This LIGHT is what the enemy sees in you!

      Not your gifts or your talents or callings, or a “special anointing”, but he sees MY SPIRIT in you.  He sees ME in you.

      THE SPECIAL ANOINTING, Who is the Third Person of the Godhead, resides in all who are born again and filled with the Spirit!

      Do you see now, My Child?  Do you see how special you are to Me?  You are ALL fearfully and wonderfully made! 

      If one is attacked, you are all attacked for you are one Body and ALL come together to fight for the Victory!

      The devil goes about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.  It matters not to him what your calling is, or what body part you are but only that you are Mine.

      He sees My Mark on you.  He sees My Fire burning in your heart and he wants to quench it if he can.

      But do not fear.  I have you covered.  You are hidden in Christ.  I have armed you with My Word.

      The weapons of your warfare are MIGHTY through your God!  This is a New Covenant we have, Beloved.

      You are not like Job who lost everything he had.  Job did not have the Spirit dwelling in Him.  Job was not hidden in Christ.  You are a NEW CREATION with every spiritual blessing!

      You are covered in My Glory!  Do not let fear enter your mind and heart.  I have not given you a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind.

      I do not give the devil free reign in your life.  I AM a good, good Father.  Though bad things happen in this world and afflictions and tribulations abound, I have promised to deliver you from them all.

      I have no favorites for you are ALL in Christ Jesus!  I have called you and chosen you and anointed you.

      Therefore, if one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.  Now you are the Body of Christ and individually members of it.

      For thus says the LORD Who created you and He that formed you, “Fear not: for I have redeemed you, I have called you by name; you are Mine.  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you: when you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon you.”

      I will bring your children from the east and gather them from the west.  I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring My Sons from far, and My Daughters from the ends of the earth; even EVERY ONE that is called by My Name — for I have created you ALL for My Glory, I have formed you; yea, I have made you and I will keep you!”

      The Sheep and the Goats: Matthew 25:31-46

      INTRODUCTION

      The content of Matthew 25 maintains the strong theme already introduced at Matthew 24:36: the disciples must be alert and occupied in the work Jesus had set before them. This theme continues into chapter 25 ending at Matthew 26:1.

      First, please consider some very important things here in the sheep and goats parable:

      -In context, Jesus is speaking to his disciples continuing his discourse he began as recorded in Mat 24.

      -This passage is also part of the encouragement Jesus gave to the disciples to not give up.

      -Like the two previous parables in Mat 25, this text must be interpreted as a parable not literally.

      – Like the two previous parables we have two groups of people, one blessed and the other condemned.

      -These people gathered before Him, it is clear, have claimed to follow Jesus, both ‘sheep’ and ‘goats’. They had been in the ‘sheepfold’ of the ekklesia, and when the chief shepherd would appear, who knows his own sheep and calls them by name (John 10:27), he will easily separate the one from the other.

      -All people who ever have been or shall be whole world will be judged—“we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ”. But what is described here in this parable, only concerns the judgment of those who had made some profession of faith, those who had opportunity to receive Jesus. That’s important.

      Next, a fundamental and important question is: who are ‘these brothers of mine’?

      Consistently throughout the Gospel of Matthew, these are those who do His Father’s will (e.g., Mat 12:49-50). It refers to those who carry the good news of the Kingdom of God, Jesus’ disciples, His representatives, from the greatest to the least. So, in sending the disciples (Mat 10:1-42), He told them not to take provisions with them but to rely on the hospitality of those who would receive them in His name. He ends declaring, “And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.” Not just the ‘least’, but ‘anyone’!

      Jesus spoke these words on the Mt of Olives to encourage the disciples, reminding them of the sufferings and persecutions they would endure (Mat 10, 24:9-13). Many would come to their aid when they are imprisoned, thirsty, homeless, naked, etc. Acts and the apostles’ letters record many instances of this.

      See also Hebrews 2:11,17 “He is not ashamed to call His own, ‘His brothers”. Note also Acts 9:4-5 where Jesus identified with the persecuted believers saying to Saul “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.”

      Of course, Jesus’ people must render help to anyone in need. Paul put it well “So then, while we have opportunity, let’s do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.” But it is an error of interpretation to teach that Jesus in this parable meant the poor and disadvantaged.

      Many scholars say this as a reference to “the last judgment” at the end of history. Does scripture ever say this? Or does the Bible even call it “The Last judgment”? Not really. This judgment parable is contextually set at the return of Jesus. It follows as a third parable in Matthew 25 and these three follow the parable in Mat 24:45-51. Thus there are four similar parables in the Olivet Discourse.

      As you know, the original Greek has no chapters and the text must be read without any break. Thus it is certainly part of the Olivet Discourse, Jesus answers to the disciples’ questions (Mat 24:3).

      Like other parables of Jesus, and indeed the whole of the Olivet Discourse , this passage is set in the context of Israel and addressed to Jews. So the scene is entirely Jewish and not worldwide.

      THE TEXT

      V31. “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne.

      -when the Son of Man comes:  Clearly, this is the same coming as we have already seen in Mat 24:30 with the motifs of glory and angels. Also see Mat 16:27-28. The NT only speaks of one coming of the Son of Man, never ‘a second coming’. In Hebrews 9:28 we read ‘will appear a second time”. This phrase is a strong allusion to Daniel 7:13-14.

      -sit on his throne: that is in judgment—which will occur when Jesus has ascended and sits at God’s right hand. The book of Revelation pictures Him seated in judgment. And Jesus told the high priest “. . But I tell you from now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of power and coming on the clouds of heaven.” (Mat 26:64).  Again, note the Daniel 7:13-14 text relevance.

      V32-33.  And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, just as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; and He will put the sheep on His right, but the goats on the left.

      -all:  here doesn’t necessarily mean ‘every single one’, like many other texts using Greek word ‘pas’ e.g., Mat 2:3 “When King Herod heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.”

      -nations (Grk ethne) is better translated ‘peoples’–so translated in Acts 8:9. Strong’s definitions include: a race, a tribe. ‘Peoples’ or ‘tribes’ makes more sense. Today’s usage of ‘nations’ just doesn’t fit. Sometimes ‘nations’ can be kinship groups—such as Judea, Samaria and Galilee as ‘nations’ of Israel. The scene, the context, is Jewish.

      -separate them: sheep and goats typicallygrazed together but were separated at night because sheep needed different sleep conditions compared with goats. This is a very striking and suggestive comparison, as there will be two groups and two eternal destinations.

      V34-36.  Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’

      -then: the strikingly repetitive use of the word ‘then’ suggests a narrator telling a story.

      – the King will . . . on His right: clearly, those gathered ‘sheep’ were addressed as having died. They are the elect of God, true believers, having the grace of God truly within them. They are Christ’s sheep for whom he, the good shepherd, had laid down his life.

      -for I was hungry . . . to me: remarkable—these ‘sheep’ actually ministered to Jesus personally

      V37-39.  Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry, and feed you, or thirsty, and give you something to drink? And when did we see you as a stranger, and invite you in, or naked, and clothe you? And when did we see you sick, or in prison, and come to you?’

      – the righteous: they are now called ‘the righteous’

      -when did we see you . . they are surprised and ask when did they ever respond so charitably? The righteous who know the Lord do not keep track of their good seeds. Love does not keep account. Such people know of no good works to claim to their credit.

      they are portrayed as having died, yet are able to think, recall memory, be surprised and speak, asking the King “when did we . . . ?” Were they raised from death? Remember this is a parable.

      V40. And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it for me.’

      -the King will answer: the King explains how they are the blessed ones. The King answers their question explaining His identification with even the least of his siblings!

      -to the extent: each loving occasion has been recorded! There are so many times they did, yet they can’t recall—helping Jesus’ disciples had become their lifestyle.

      -least of these brothers of mine: Who are these? Consistently throughout the Gospel of Matthew, His brothers are those who do His Father’s will (e.g., Mat 12:49-50). It refers to those who carry the good news of the Kingdom of God, Jesus’ disciples, His representatives. For example, in sending the disciples (Mat 10:1-42), He told them not to take provisions with them but to rely on the hospitality of those who would receive them in His name. He ends declaring, “And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward. (Mat 10:42)” Not just the ‘least’ but ‘anyone’!

      See also Hebrews ch 2—“He is not ashamed to call His own, ‘His brothers” (Heb 2:11,17).

      And also Acts 9:4-5 where Jesus identified with the persecuted believers “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.” Of course, Jesus’ taught many times that his people must render help to anyone in need. But it is an error of interpretation to teach that Jesus here meant the poor and disadvantaged.

      -encouragement for the disciples: Jesus spoke these words on the Mt of Olives that day, to encourage the disciples, reminding them of the sufferings and persecutions they would endure (Mat 10, 24:9-13). In days to come, many would come to their aid when they are imprisoned, thirsty, homeless, naked, etc. Acts and the apostles’ letters record numerous instances of this.

      V41-43.  “Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, you accursed people, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite me in; naked, and you did not clothe me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’

      -you accursed people: they are aligned with the devil and his angels and destined for eternal fire, the worst of all outcomes, because they failed to acknowledge Jesus in his followers. Chilling.

      V44-46.  Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or as a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it for one of the least of these, you did not do it for Me, either.’ These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

      -Lord, when? They also are stunned—why they are the accursed? What wrong did we do?

      -the King will answer: The King answers: because they did not support his agents, even the least of them! See Matthew 10:40-42 where Jesus commissioned the twelve and expected them to be supported by others in several ways—even with giving them a cup of cold water.

      -to the extent: it was their lifestyle to despise his servants instead of receiving them (Mat 10:40-42) 

      -the least of these: Who are the ‘least’? As we have seen, they are those who do his Father’s will who are called His brothers and sisters (Mat 12:49-50).

      -eternal punishment . .  into eternal life: There are only two destinies. The same Greek word is used—eternal punishment or eternal life. If there is eternal life, there must be eternal punishment.

      “Their excuses will not be regarded, their pleas will be of no avail, their pretensions to interest in Christ, and love to him, will be set aside; the sentence will remain irrevocable, and there will be no appeal from it, for there is no higher tribunal to bring the cause before.” (John Gill, Commentary on Matthew)

      -compare Jesus’ words, Mat 7:22-23: Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonderful works in Your name?’ But then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from Me, you who practice evil.’

      CONCLUSION

      Teresa of Calcutta said

      “Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough; Give the world the best you have anyway. You see, in the final analysis, it is all between you and God; It was never between you and them anyway.”

      There are many lessons for us today in this passage, even if we are not the ones addressed directly. I will leave this up to you dear reader and ask the Lord to speak to you and direct your paths, your heart.

      Study–Gospel of Matthew 25:1-30

      The Gospel of Matthew is distinguished from those of Mark and Luke by the presence of five great discourses. The final discourse, usually called “the Olivet Discourse” is found in chapters 24 and 25.

      These five discourses are marked by occurrences of the closing phrase “when Jesus had finished all these words” (7:28, 11:1, 13:53, 19:1, and 26:1). Thus, Matthew 25 continues unbroken from the end of Matthew 24 answering the questions his disciples had asked. It is not until Matthew 26:1 that we see the end of this discourse in Matthew and read “when Jesus had finished all these words.”

      The content of Matthew 25 maintains the strong theme already seen introduced at Matthew 24:36: the disciples must be alert and occupied in the work Jesus had set before them, in. This theme continues into chapter 25 ending at Matthew 26:1. So our interpretation of each of these three parabolic narratives must contextually reflect what we see in chapter 24.

      For example, it is important to see that the content of Matthew 25:31-46, the sheep and goats judgment, is part of the encouragement Jesus gave to the disciples to not give up. Look at the way Jesus continues to speak in a number of parables continuing to encourage those disciples and this fact must guide our interpretation. This is important.

      So let’s look at the first two of these well-known parabolic narrative-pictures which Jesus uses to stress the importance of the disciples being about his business. In each we see two groups of people: the wise and foolish girls, the ‘well-done’ slaves and the ‘worthless, lazy’ slave.

      V1.  “Then the kingdom of heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went out to meet the groom.

      -the kingdom of heaven will be comparable: This opening phrase reminds us of Jesus’ parables of the kingdom in Matthew 13.-virgins: Jesus paints a typical marriage scene with the custom of a group of girls (teenagers?) waiting for the coming bridegroom. The virgins represent those expecting the soon coming of the Son of Man.

      V2-4.  Five of them were foolish, and five were prudent. For when the foolish took their lamps, they did not take extra oil with them; but the prudent ones took oil in flasks with their lamps.

      -five were foolish, five prudent: Some will be prepared for the coming bridegroom but not all. The disciples are warned to be properly prepared.

      V6-6.  Now while the groom was delaying, they all became drowsy and began to sleep. But at midnight there finally was a shout: ‘Behold, the groom! Come out to meet him.’

      -groom delayed: Some will ask where is he? Or say that He will never come. These will be ‘asleep’. This was played out e,g., see 2 Peter 3:4.-at midnight: The coming of the groom will seem delayed but he will come at an unexpected time, though imminent, for these girls–a few hours hence at the most! Certainly not a very long time. In fact they have been told that the Divine Groom will come within the lifetime of some of those listening (Mat 24:30-34).-the shout: compare with 1 Cor 15:51ff , 1 Thes 4:17-18.

      V7-11. Then all those virgins got up and trimmed their lamps. But the foolish said to the prudent ones, ‘Give us some of your oil, because our lamps are going out.’ However, the prudent ones answered, ‘No, there most certainly would not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the merchants and buy for yourselves.’  But while they were on their way to buy, the groom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. Yet later, the other virgins also came, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open up for us.’

      -on their way to buy: the disciples can be too busy, distracted by worldly matters & miss the groom.-and the door was shut: just like Noah and God shut the door.

      vs12-13.  But he answered, ‘Truly I say to you, I do not know you.’ But be on the alert then, because you do not know the day nor the hour.

      -truly: assuredly (amen), I do not know you: These are the foolish girls. But the true elect know the Lord. (Compare this with Mat 7:22-23 and Genesis 7:16)

      -you: That is, the disciples he was addressing, not people ages away. This will be critical for them. It is not addressed to us today as that day has already long past.

      -the day nor hour: He does not say ‘the decade or the age’ when he will come—it’s much closer.

      Now let’s look at the second of the 3 passages of promises and warnings that Jesus gave his disciples.

      V14-15. For it is just like a man about to go on a journey, who called his own slaves and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and he went on his journey.

      – about to go on a journey: Of course, Jesus is the man soon to leave them and ascend to the Father

      – entrusted his possessions to them: Jesus has taught them the Kingdom of God and commissioned his disciples to teach all peoples what he taught them.

      -to one he gave . . : Jesus will also give various gifts, talents and tasks to suit each disciple’s ability

      V15-18. The one who had received the five talents immediately went and did business with them, and earned five more talents. In the same way the one who had received the two talents earned two more. But he who received the one talent went away and dug a hole in the ground, and hid his master’s money.

      went and did: risk taking no problem—he trusted the Master to supply and to bless obedience

      -hid his master’s money: fear was in his heart lest he lose what was not his, so he had no intention of following his master’s orders. Disobedience.

      V19-23. Now after a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. The one who had received the five talents came up and brought five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you entrusted five talents to me. See, I have earned five more talents.’ 21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter the joy of your master.’ “Also the one who had received the two talents came up and said, ‘Master, you entrusted two talents to me. See, I have earned two more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter the joy of your master.’

      -after a long time:  but not centuries! Just longer than they expect! (see also 2 Peter 3:3-4)

      -well done . . . : the master keeps his promise, the disciples are assured of rewards for faithfulness

      V24-29. “Now the one who had received the one talent also came up and said, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter seed. 25 And I was afraid, so I went away and hid your talent in the ground. See, you still have what is yours.’ “But his master answered and said to him, ‘You worthless, lazy slave! Did you know that I reap where I did not sow, and gather where I did not scatter seed? 27 Then you ought to have put my money in the bank, and on my arrival I would have received my money back with interest. 28 Therefore: take the talent away from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents.’

      – money back with interest: this servant didn’t even have some earnings from interest to give back.

      – worthless, lazy slave: the servant was severely castigated by the master

      -take the talent away from him: he loses any small credit and another receives it.

      29 “For to everyone who has, more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have, even what he does have shall be taken away. 30 And throw the worthless slave into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

      -buried talents: if a talent is not put to service, it is taken away—a warning to the disciples.

      -outer darkness: this worker is deemed worthless and becomes eternally lost.

      Thanks for reading so far. A future article will treat the rest of Matthew 25.

      Christmas is Popular

      By David Pellowe of The Good Sauce

      iBible 2022, RevelationMedia

      Nearly every Australian can’t wait to put up their lights and decorations.

      Retailers rush to sell them as early as possible, and tell us all it’s Christmas.

      Of course, no one actually says it’s the celebration of the birth of God’s Anointed One, His Divine Son clothed in humanity, born in poverty to a working class family in Roman-occupied Judea-Samaria.

      ‘Progressives’ have helped us move on from anything anchored in history.

      No commercial or official public observation of the season acknowledges the profoundly spiritual significance, and the fulfilment of the long-prophesied life and mission of Jesus the Christ.

      Secularists have helped us vandalise the transcendent and scorn anything incomprehensible without the supernatural.

      The nations which officially celebrate His birth with two extra days off work or penalty rates — a social phenomenon repeated again to remember His sacrificial death — don’t get much reminder of the morally crucial reasons for Christmas, or the pointed lessons we should take from it.

      Yet we live in a culture which boasts of its ability to achieve moral excellence without a Moral Law Giver, and proceeds to take great pride in all kinds of immorality and ethical relativism.

      Christmas should make intellectually honest people so incredibly uncomfortable they demand a resolution to the neo-liberal hypocrisies Christmas exposes.

      Instead, we lie about the meaning of Christmas, and fill each other’s heads with all kinds of warm and fuzzy distractions to drown out the voice that won’t go away, that voice which never quits whispering, “God is real, and worse, you desperately need Him!”

      Anything but the Truth at Christmas.

      Here are three culturally confronting things everybody should remember every time they see a Christmas coverup like reindeer, elves, gingerbread houses, toy soldiers or “happy holidays”.

       “Peace on earth”

      When Jesus came to earth the first time, it was as a servant on a mission to solve a problem.

      The problem was there was no possibility of peace between humanity and God.

      The solution was always going to be Jesus giving His life 33 years later in the place of you and me to satisfy divine justice for our multiple moral failures and restore the possibility of peace between us and God.

      It was knowing this that a vast, heavenly army of angels appeared to the shepherds the night of His birth announcing, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among people with whom He is pleased!”

      Not coincidentally, those shepherds worked in the village where lambs were specifically born and raised for future sacrifice in the temple for people’s sins, according to Jewish law.

      This pointed to the purpose of Christ’s birth and life mission, and so the meaning of Christmas.

      The culturally confronting lesson here is one Jesus later taught, and that is that everyone “who does not believe has been condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.”

      The Good News of Christmas is that’s not the end of the story, but just the beginning.

      God saw us already condemned, and sent His Son to earth to be born miraculously and to miraculously make peace possible between us and God.

       “Wise men with three gifts”

      No, there weren’t three wise men, or three kings, and they didn’t visit baby Jesus in the manger.

      A class of wise men and priests who were astrologers, also known as “magi”, traveled from the Persian kingdoms of the Middle East, a few years after Jesus was born.

      There’s no way such wealthy elites would have risked traveling in a small group of three, and it’s implausible their caravan would have brought small quantities of gifts to present to Someone they described as “born King” Who they came to worship.

      They brought three types of gifts, and instead of teddy bears, baby rattles or toys, each of the gifts was prophetically symbolic of the significance of this unique child’s birth and life mission.

      Gold, frankincense and myrrh were extremely precious gifts, more helpful for a king than a baby.

      Gold certainly symbolised Christ’s royalty and is easily recognised as bestowing great honour as well as wealth on what was probably previously a not so well off family.

      It’s unlikely they tossed Him their spare change in coins.

      Frankincense is an aromatic resin that was more expensive in those days than the average home could afford to use as air freshener in the out house.

      It was used in Persia as incense in ceremonial worship of a deity.

      In this way, the magi demonstrated their understanding of not only Jesus’ royalty, but His Divinity.

      Myrrh was used in the ancient world as a perfume and anointing oil, and was also used in healing.

      Most importantly as it relates to the meaning of Christmas, it was an ingredient in the mixture of spices which was used to prepare bodies for burial.

      These gifts together indicate that the Divine King of the Universe humbled Himself as humanity with a mission to give His life to save the world.

      Christmas is not about whatever you want it to be about.

       “Santa Claus”

      Santa’s name, adapted over various cultures to modern sounds we find harder to understand in English, was actually Saint Nicholas.

      Say that with an exaggerated Scandinavian accent out loud and you may see the similarity, depending on how well you do Swedish impersonations.

      Saint Nicholas was the Christian Bishop of Myra, in modern-day Turkey, about 300 years before imperialist Islam was invented.

      History tells how he was born to wealthy parents, gave away all his wealth to the poor and oppressed, and was jailed just for being Christian.

      Santa Claus was the first pro-life Christian activist.

      Upon his release from jail, he preached against killing unwanted babies, a common practice then too.

      Many babies were conceived in sexual rituals at the Temple of Diana.

      Locals eventually pulled down and destroyed the pagan temple, convicted by Santa’s preaching.

      I love Santa Claus: a real, historic person and an unapologetic, public Christian whose love for Jesus confronted and helped change culture.

      We need more culture warriors like him today!

      Far from letting Santa distract you or your kids from the real meaning of Christmas, let his story remind you that Jesus was born, lived and died to destroy the curse of sin and evil.

      His sacrificial death then invited people around the world to peace: restored friendship with God in such a way that it lifts up people and nations brave enough to confront their sinfulness.

      The lessons Christmas teaches our culture is that we’re not okay.

      We’re sin-infected and already condemned without the opportunity Christmas represents to make peace with God, as the angels testified to shepherds who knew exactly the blood price which sin demands.

      It teaches that Jesus was not just a man, but the Divine King of Kings Whose birth was the beginning of a mission to die so that we might have eternal life.

      Christmas is not just a time for family and penalty rates, prawns and backyard cricket.

      Santa teaches us it’s a confronting celebration of the One Who has the power to shatter false religions and calibrate cultures to the Kingdom of God.

      His Gospel brings hope for real justice, liberty, peace and mercy to citizens and societies that are willing to honestly hear the sermon of Santa’s life: the real meaning of Christmas to culture.

      REVOLUTIONIZE” your Christian walk

      By Andrew Strom.

      Practical steps that will “REVOLUTIONIZE” your Christian walk:

      For many years now I have studied the accounts of past Revivals
      and Revivalists. But when you study this topic, one of the things
      you see very quickly is that we in the church today are living well
      below the level of Christianity that should be considered ‘normal’.
      (-Even a lot of “Spirit-filled” believers today). When you see what
      kind of Gospel was preached and what kind of Christian life was
      lived in the Revival days of old, you start to hunger for that kind of
      Christianity again. And you start to see that there is a kind-of
      “Revived” life that is very attainable for us all today – but so few
      are walking in it – or are even told that it exists.

      In many ways, what I am talking about is the ‘Normal’ Christian
      life. It is nothing else but the “new creation” life found in Romans
      chapters 6 – 8. There is nothing “amazing” about it at all. Yet it is
      so far above the kind of Christianity that we have been led to
      expect, that many think it “unattainable”. How very sad – because
      it is the free gift of God to us all.

      Is it possible to walk before God in a constant state of being
      ‘clean’ before Him – and knowing it? Is it possible to walk with a
      truly pure heart and clean conscience as our “normal” state –
      every day? Is it possible to live in true victory over sin – at a
      practical level? Is it possible to have the strongholds of sin and
      pride in our fallen nature so dealt-with that they hardly bother us at all?

      The answer to these questions is ‘Yes’. And one of the key things
      that our website has to be about, is how to come into this kind of
      Christianity – how to literally have a “personal Revival”.

      STEP ONE – MAKE a “LIST”

      As all Scripture and Revival history shows – a true Revival begins
      with “Deep Repentance”. And in our personal lives, it so often
      begins with making a “list” – literally – of ANY sin or compromise
      or “cloud” that is in our life – and confessing those sins to God
      with real sorrow and repentance. Any person who cannot make a
      ‘LIST’ like that – and spend time confessing their sins before God
      (-and forsaking them!) – is not really serious about becoming
      ‘Revived’. This is the first place to start.

      In fact, please stop reading this right now. Please find a piece of
      paper and write down a List of every sin or ‘doubtful’ thing in your
      life. Ask God to “shine His light” into your heart and show you
      everything that you need to repent of. Then simply get alone with
      Him and go through that List – repenting of each thing one by one –
      deeply confessing and forsaking them before the Lord.

      I believe a lot of people will have a “Personal Revival” just through
      doing that! -In fact, I know of many people who have literally been
      ‘revived’ through this simple process. So please – DO IT NOW! This
      first step is so important that I do not believe there is any point
      reading further until you have gone through it.

      THEN – “WALKING” in it:

      Now, after you have been through this Repentance process, what
      you are left with is a CLEAN CONSCIENCE. [-This is assuming
      that you have already been through the other basic steps found in
      Romans 6 – 8. ie. WATER-BAPTISM (-a “death” to the old life)
      and also RECEIVING THE HOLY SPIRIT (-without which we do
      not have the ‘POWER’ to walk in a truly ‘Revived’ state). Please
      see my other articles for more on these two steps if you need to].

      Assuming that you have these basic things in place, and that you
      have now REPENTED DEEPLY by confessing your sins to God
      one by one, you should now sense a RENEWED COMMUNION
      with God through having a totally CLEAN CONSCIENCE before
      Him. Is that what you are sensing?

      The Bible speaks many times of having a conscience that is
      “sprinkled clean” by God. -And what a precious thing this is! In
      fact, it is fair to say that the Christian life consists of- (1) GETTING
      a clean conscience, and (2) KEEPING it clean! -It is pretty much
      as simple as that!

      So how do you “walk” in a ‘Revived’ state before God? -Simply by
      walking in a way that KEEPS YOUR CONSCIENCE CLEAN. That
      is what Romans 8 is all about! -That is what 1 John 3 is all about!
      -Keeping your heart PURE before God. -Getting a clean
      conscience and WALKING IN IT – by the power of the Holy Spirit.

      Special blessings to all.

      Teresa: Living Godly

      People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered;

      Forgive them anyway.

      If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;

      Be kind any way.

      If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;

      Succeed anyway.

      If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;

      Be honest and frank anyway.

      What you spend years building, someone may destroy overnight;

      Build anyway.

      If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;

      Be happy anyway.

      The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;

      Do good anyway.

      Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;

      Give the world the best you have anyway.

      You see, in the final analysis, it is all between you and God;

      It was never between you and them anyway.

      Your Greatest Days Are Before You

      DARE TO BELIEVE! By Veronika West August 24, 2022

      Dare to believe!

      by Veronika West August 26, 2022

      “Why so down cast, My Beloved? As if a dark cloud of Unbelief and Fear has descended upon you.

      Behold, I AM not a God who is distant or unapproachable, uninterested, or too busy to give you My full Attention.

      No! I AM not deaf to your cries or blind to your needs. I AM a Loving Father who is near to those who draw near to Me.

      Look! I have unlimited resources available for all My Children. I know no limitation or lack.

      The Righteous will never beg for bread, but will always have more than enough. Super-abundance, awaits those who wait expectantly on Me.

      See! In the midst of darkness, I AM Light! In War and Conflict, I AM Peace. In a world full of hatred and evil doers, I AM Love and I AM Good, full of tender Mercy and Loving Kindness.

      In times of grief, I AM Comfort and Strength. In loneliness and isolation, My Radiant Presence is all that you need.

      Beloved, My watchful Eye is always upon you, for I have hidden you from your enemies and shielded you from their vicious attacks.

      Under the Shadow of My Wing, you are protected from the heat of the noonday sun and preserved from every danger that lurks in darkness.

      So Lift up your head that hangs low, and look only to Me. Lean on Me, and I will be an ever-present Helper.

      Even My Angels stand ready to go forth to War for you; to prepare a way for you; to level the Mountains and fill in the valleys.

      Let your heart Rejoice, for the Battle is already Won and the Victory is assured!

      Ha! Yes, I laugh at your enemies. Come up higher, and you will laugh at your enemies too.

      You will see that those who think they are winning, are actually losing, and the gallows they have built for another, shall become the place for their own demise and destruction.

      Watch! Soon and very soon, they will have enough rope for their own hanging. Who do they think they are, as if the breathe in their lungs were given to them by man?

      My Heart is grieved, for the hearts of men are truly wicked, all day long. Yet in My great Mercy, I AM still mindful of them, waiting for their hearts to turn in true Repentance for their wicked deeds.

      tipping point

      But surely I tell you, the Bowls of their Iniquity are now at a Divine Tipping Point. My patience will soon run out, and My Justice and Judgments will not be restrained forever.

      Suddenly, swiftly and quickly, as if a light switch was flicked on, I shall come with My Vengeance and with My Glory, and The Spirit of The Fear of The LORD shall grip their wicked hearts, and their stiff necks shall be broken, and many will fall as dead men in their tracks.

      I shall not be mocked!

      Therefore Warriors, do not grow weary in your Prayers and Petitions, day and night, for My Courts are now in Session and I sit as a Righteous Judge over The Nations.

      Watch! For have I not said, that in these last days I shall perform the same Miracle that I did at first?

      Yes! Water shall be turned to Wine, for I AM not governed by time.

      hourglass graphic

      Look! A Kairos Time, for now the Archangel with the Hourglass in his hand stands before you, and The Nations of the Earth, holding the Sands of Time.

      Watch and Listen, as a Divine Acceleration, Acceleration, Acceleration, begins to take place!

      Watch! As I take you back to your future, Divine Reversals, as Generational Curses shall be reversed and Covenant Blessings shall be released

      Nations that have been held captive shall be let go — for surely, I stand over My Word to perform it!

      As I send it out, it always, always produces fruit — and fruit that shall remain.

      Yes! It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.

      Oh Beloved, if only you had a greater understanding of My Ways and My Thoughts, then you would be at Peace and great expectation would fill your hearts.

      You would walk in such Power and Authority, nothing would weigh you down or distract you from the purposes for which I created you.

      What time is wasted by worry and anxiety, as if the spirit of fear can change anything!

      My Beloved, you need a deeper Revelation of the Perfect and Complete Love that I have for you, then, and only then, will you become unstoppable, a True Warrior who strikes fear in the heart of the enemy, and a real and present danger to the kingdom of darkness, and you will become as the Violent, who will take the kingdom by force.

      Beloved, I have fashioned you for War, and made you a weapon in My great Arsenal.

      As you position yourself in Me, and place your life in My Hands, fully yielded and surrendered to My Way and Will, you will live in the fullest of blessing and My highest purpose!

      Will you dare to believe, that surely I have kept the best for last, and that your greatest days are before you?”