Rom 6:23 God’s Promise to Adam and His Seed 11/14/2010 ßą
#1. The Wages of Sin is Death (Rom 6:23, Gen 2:17, Ezek 18:20, Rom 9:21)
#2. Three Kinds of Death (Gen 2:17, 1Cor 15:51, Ezek 18:4)
#3. The Full Wrath of God (Rev 14:9-11, Rom 3:18, Rev 13:7-8, Matt 7:13-14)
#4. Is There a Way of Escape? (Rom 5:15-17, Gen 15:16, Rev 14:10)
Please open your Bibles to the Prophecy of Genesis, Gen 2:16 (2X). The title of this sermon is, “God’s Promise to Adam and His Seed” (2X). When we consider the promises of God we should be looking at all the words God spoke to mankind; the promises of judgment are just as well promises of God as the words that sound so comforting. Here in Gen 2:16-17 we read of God’s promise to Adam:
Ge 2:16-17 “And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” (And the words “thou shalt surely die” are literally “dying thou shalt die”.)
Did God know that Adam and his wife would eat from that tree? Absolutely yes! God knew that. God set the stage. And God knew that one of His angels, by the name of Lucifer, the shining one, who was filled with pride, was determined to make Adam eat of that tree and lose his righteousness, so that he would not have to serve him. Adam and Eve’s intellect was no match against the intellect of an angel. And so, Adam sinned and plunged the entire human race into spiritual death in the sight of God. And now what can we say about the wisdom of God? As you can see I am going to quote many references. I recommend that you write down these for your own edification
God declared in Prov 3:19, "The LORD in wisdom hath founded the earth." It means that whatever God has done, we should believe that this was the best plan for this creation; the best plan that God could have designed for the purpose of glorifying Him. We have already seen in Eph 1:9-11 what God's eternal purpose was and is for this creation. We have also seen from Isa 45:1-9 the providence of God, and the tools of God’s providence, which are election and reprobation, as stated in Rom 9:11-26. The overriding motive for all this is the love of God for His elect children, which is a love that is manifested at the cross, and which is revealed throughout the whole Bible, as stated in John 5:39-40. God loves those who are His elect, and God does not love those who have not been elected to salvation, as stated in Rom 11:19-22, where God said, “Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.” And what is the penalty for those who have been cut off on account of their sins? God said in Rom 6:23, “The wages of sin is death”, and the death that God has in view is the second death in the lake of fire. It is the process of dying which lasts for an eternity in the lake of fire. Was this concept of Hell also an element of God's plan that He had before the foundation of the world? Absolutely Yes! God is immutable, which means God does not change. If God would make a change in a decision after He began to create this world, then God would not be immutable. And it was in God's plan to save a certain number of people from going to Hell, because they were to become the bride of Christ. Before the foundation of the world the Father chose a bride for His Son. They are called the Elect of God. God planned everything for the lives of His Elect. All God's plans are now executed in minute detail including the elect being "partakers of Christ's sufferings", in order that, "when his glory shall be revealed, we may be glad also with exceeding joy" (1Pet 4:13). God's plan for this creation also included a number of people whom God did not plan to save. These are called the reprobate. Was God aware that the reprobate would come into existence? Did they come to life by the power of Satan, as is suggested in Matt 13:25 in the parable of the wheat and the tares? Was God surprised to find them living in the midst of His elect? Absolutely not! God is never surprised. God made them, for God said in Prov 16:4, “The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.” God says that He made "the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction" (Rom 9:22). So, what is the purpose of their existence? Please turn in your Bibles to the First Epistle to the Corinthians, 1Cor 1:21 (2X). We must accept the wisdom of God, and believe that it was necessary for the reprobate to exist so that God’s plan for the salvation of His elect can be completed. For example, the Lord Jesus Christ had to endure sufferings and crucifixion at the hand of the reprobate. But now, God separates the elect from the reprobate through the preaching of the Gospel. We read in 1Cor 1:21 the purpose of the preaching of the Gospel,
1Co 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. (This is how everything hangs together.)
Now there are two wisdoms in this verse. There is the wisdom of God and the wisdom of this world. The people of the world by their worldly wisdom did not know God. This is how God created the world. This is how God in His wisdom created them. And then God saved those whom He wanted to save by the foolishness of preaching, "for the preaching of the cross is them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God" (1Cor 1:18). Please turn in your Bibles to the Epistle to the Romans, Rom 6:23 (2X). There is sin everywhere. Them that perish commit sins, for which they will be cast into Hell. The elect also commit sins. God's righteousness demands that every sin must be paid. What is that payment? God says in Rom 6:23,
#1. The Wages of Sin is Death (Rom 6:23, Gen 2:17, Ezek 18:20, Rom 9:21)
Death is not natural and normal. Death is very unnatural. Death is the manifestation of the wrath of God. Death was introduced after Adam sinned. But physical death is only a shadow of the penalty for sin. When God said to Adam in Gen 2:17, "for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die (Lit: dying thou shalt die)" that was a promise which God was going to fulfill on the same day that Adam ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Whoever swallows poison must die, and whoever opposes the living God must also necessarily lose his life. Therefore, when Adam ate from that tree he died instantly, according to the promise of God. That day he died not in his body, but he died in his soul. And this is how Adam and Eve brought their posterity into the world: spiritually dead, which means unable to do anything of value to God. But man remained a rational, moral creature. If he lost also his intellect and his will, he could not be a sinner, and be held accountable for his sins. But of all his excellent gifts, which he had received from God in the Garden of Eden, he retained only small remnants thereof. But these remnants of intellect and morality are sufficient to leave man without excuse. Therefore all men are conceived in sin, and are by nature children of wrath, incapable of doing anything good to save themselves from the wrath of God. They are prone to evil, in bondage to sin, and without the regenerating grace of God the Holy Spirit they are neither able, nor willing to return to God. Please turn in your Bibles to chapter 9 of this Epistle to the Romans, Rom 9:21 (2X).It might appear then as if the descendants of Adam were the innocent victims of his transgression. He sinned, and they all suffer and came into the world with a corrupt nature, without the precious gifts such as knowledge of God, righteousness and holiness, which God originally gave to Adam. Must the children suffer for the sins of the parents? God says in Ezek 18:20, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.” And so, must we suffer for the sin of Adam? And how can we be held accountable for actual sins and transgressions if we are born with a nature that is incapable of keeping the Law of God? If I am born with a corrupt nature, I certainly cannot help it that I never had an opportunity to do anything good in the eyes of God. I am an innocent victim of circumstances, who is to be pitied rather than to come under the judgment of God and be condemned. Why does God condemn me at all? To understand this a little we need to take a look at Rom 9:21. When God created mankind, He did not make a multitude of individuals, like He did with the angels, but God created one organism, the root of which and the bearer of whose nature was Adam. God said in Rom 9:21, "Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?" God made the whole human race out of the same lump, which is Adam. Adam was the ROOT of the human race. This brings us to the subject of:
God created mankind as one organism. That is why God said in Acts 17:26, “And (He) hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;” Of one blood; that means the blood of Adam. Please turn to chapter 5 of this Epistle to the Romans, Rom 5:12. God made of one blood all nations on the earth. Adam, the bearer of this one blood and the bearer of this human nature, sinned and corrupted himself, and thereby corrupted the entire human race. This is exactly what the Scriptures teach us, because we read in Rom 5:12, “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Moreover, God created the human race not only as one organism, with Adam as the root and the first father, but also as a legal corporation, with Adam as the legal representative head. Therefore there is communal responsibility; and there is communal guilt and suffering in human life. We cannot say that we do not want Adam to be our legal representative, because Rom 5 teaches us this important principle: If we do not submit ourselves to this representative principle, that Adam is our representative in the flesh, then Christ cannot be our legal representative in the spirit, and we end up without a Savior. The representative principle is an integral part of God's plan of salvation. God declares in the Bible: Through one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so we are all born "dead in trespasses and sins". In fact, all have departed from the living God. "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God" (Rom 3:23). Since Adam is the ROOT of the human race, we must realize that Adam's sin was the ROOT SIN, and that this root sin must develop until its fruit is ripe and the full measure of iniquity is filled throughout our entire human race. Then sin will be revealed in its true character as rebellion against God; and God will be revealed in His righteous judgment over all that do and love sin. Presently we can see this rebellion develop in false gospels that incorporate signs and wonders and dreams and visions and speaking in tongues, and these false gospels are taking the world by storm because mankind is by nature anti-God, and thus anything that is anti-God will be popular throughout the world. We also see that, through the forces of the homosexual community, there is a movement to change the Bible so that it will not be gender specific, and homosexuality will no longer be condemned. For example, Canada is set to vote on a bill that would criminalize public expression against homosexual behavior. Bill #C-250 would add sexual orientation as a protected category in Canada's genocide and hate-crimes legislation. If this bill passes, the KJ Bible will be deemed "hate literature" under the criminal code. We can see that it is only a matter of time before such legislation will be passed in this country, and then our radio broadcasts will be against the Law of the land. But we should have peace with all these developments, because God is working everything out according to His plan, and the root sin must develop until its fruit is ripe and the full measure of iniquity is filled up by the human race. “The iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.” (Gen 15:16). To the development of the fullness of this ripened fruit of sin, all the ungodly work together in harmony with all their gifts, their talents, their money, their time, and all the lawyers they can drum up. We should rejoice in all this, because it indicates that Christ is coming soon. "And blessed are they to whom it is given by grace" in the cause of Christ "not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake" (Phil 1:29). The ROOT sin is also called “Original sin” which is described as a black blotch on our soul which we inherit by being born into this world. Let me make a correction here; it is not a black spot, but a red spot on our soul. What is the color of sin? It is RED, not black, for God says in Isa 1:18, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” Yes, our sins are scarlet red, like blood. Adam committed the ROOT sin, which was punished with death. However, there are:
#2. Three Kinds of Death (Gen 2:17, 1Cor 15:51, Ezek 18:4)
When God said to Adam in Gen 2:17, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die”, we must understand what death God is talking about, or else we make God a liar. The Bible clearly describes a human being as consisting of a body and a soul. The soul is a spirit. When the soul departs from the body, the body dies. This is "physical death". Obviously, since Adam's body did not die on the day he ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, physical death was not what God was referring to when He said, "for in the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die". Adam's body died 930 years later. Even when you substitute the literal translation of the verse, "dying thou shalt die", so that the seeds of death were sown in his body on the day he sinned, this does not do justice to the fact that Adam did not die the day he sinned, but he died 930 years later. Therefore, the death God was talking about must have been spiritual death. Spiritually Adam died the moment he took a bite from the fruit he was not supposed to eat. But "physical death" was the outward sign of the sentence from God on sin. Physical death itself cannot be the penalty for sin, because on the last day, when Christ comes with all His saints, there will be saved people alive who will not die, but they will be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye (1Cor 15:51). Saved people live in a sinful body that has not been saved yet. If physical death is the penalty for sin, then these people should first die before they receive their resurrected bodies. But the Bible clearly says that those who have been saved will not die on the Last Day. Physical death is only an outward sign of the wrath of God on sin. What goes on internally, in the soul, is of far greater importance than the death of the body. God says in Ezek 18:4 “Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.” The reason spiritual death is much more serious, is because those who die physically with sins on their soul are subject to the second death. The second death is a synonym for Hell. However we should understand that Hell can be a condition, or it can be a place. Please turn in your Bibles to the Acts of the Apostles, Acts 2:27 (2X).
For example, when the Lord Jesus Christ was crucified, He endured the wrath of God in our place, which means He endured the equivalent of an eternity in Hell in our place. We read in Acts 2:27, “Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (= Hades), neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.” Most certainly this is a condition of suffering, because the Lord Jesus Christ did not remove Himself into a place called Hell, but He endured in His Soul, or in His Spirit, the equivalent of an eternity in Hell. His sacrifice was sufficient to atone for the sins of all His Elect, and was accepted by God as a satisfactory substitution for us spending an eternity in Hell. It could only satisfy the justness, or the righteousness of God if it was indeed equivalent to what we would have to pay for our sins. If Christ would only have suffered in His body, it could not be the equivalent of what we would have to pay for our sins. Our sins are, or were, in our souls and our sufferings in Hell would have to be endured in our bodies, because they were the originators of those sins, and to be endured in our souls, because there is where the guilt for our sins is stored. So how can Christ's sufferings be substituting for ours? They can only be a valid substitution if Christ suffered in His body and also in His Soul. The KJV translators understood this very well, and that is why they translated Acts 2:27 this way. It is correct the way it is written in the KJV.
Please turn now to the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Rev 20:15 (2X). Hell is not only a condition, but the Lord Jesus said in Matt 25:41 that on the Last Day Hell will be "prepared for the Devil and his angels", which would be better translated "prepared for the Devil and his messengers". Who are these messengers of the Devil? Not only the fallen angels but also all mankind who died in their unforgiven sins; they all are messengers of the Devil. And thus we read in Rev 20:15, “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”
Who are those people whose names were not found in the Book of Life? All those who were not chosen to salvation from before the foundation of the world are not found in the Book of Life, and will be cast into the lake of fire, because NONE of them wanted to come to the Lord Jesus while they were still on this earth. NONE! And then God defines the 2nd Death. God says in Rev 21:8 (2X), “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” The wages of sin is death, but the penalty that God refers to is really the 2nd Death. That is the full wrath of God. And we might be complaining that this is a penalty which is way much larger than the measure of sin that was committed. Who are we to criticize God for the justice that He has determined? “Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God?” God says in Isa 55:8-9, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” This does not only refer to matters of salvation, but also to matters of condemnation. God is not limited by what we can understand, but God does according to His pleasure. We cannot understand the full wrath of God; we can only quote Scripture:
#3. The Full Wrath of God (Rev 14:9-11, Rom 3:18, Rev 13:7-8, Matt 7:13-14)
Please turn to chapter 14 in this prophecy of the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Rev 14:9 (2X). The scene here is that of the end of the world. The beast and the false prophet have been deceiving all the non-elect of mankind. Only a small remnant of people has remained faithful to the God of the Bible. Then the announcement from heaven sounds: "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication". And then we hear the Judgment from God upon all those who are still unsaved:
Re 14:9-11 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.
The full wrath of God is an awful penalty to pay. Do people know these words are in the Bible? Yes they do, but they choose to ignore it. These things about the 2nd death and the lake of fire are not hidden somewhere. They have been known for many centuries, because the Bible has been the best selling Book of all times. But of a truth God says, "There is no fear of God before their eyes" (Rom 3:18). Especially in our generation there are many, many churches where the teachers and the preachers claim, "There is no Hell". Why do they want to preach that way if God did not say that? It is because they are building themselves a church empire, so they preach a feel-good-gospel. They make people feel good when they hear such a non-threatening sermon. So, when they take away the awful concept of "Predestination" they make the congregation feel good. And when they take away Romans chapter 9, they make the congregation feel good. And when they tell them, "Beginning today you can be saved forever; all you have to do is come forward and accept the Lord Jesus into your heart as your savior", they make the congregation feel good. It is impossible to fully explain what goes on in the churches today; it is horrible. But like I said many times before: The single greatest cause of Divine Judgment is the sin of idolatry. And any religion that makes man great and Christ small is utter idolatry. This means that all free-will religions are utter idolatry. I know that I am stepping on toes here. But if your son or your daughter or your sister or brother is attending a free-will church, you have the obligation to let them know that they are practicing idolatry. Thank God for FREE grace. It is God who puts the gift of salvation in you; God does not offer it to you. God is the one who made us accepted in the Beloved, where Christ is the Beloved. Come out of Babylon, and bring your children with you. Those children are sinners. In order to be saved your children need FREE grace preached to them. Come out of Babylon; it is a church not worth saving. In Gal 1:6-9 God told us what to do with those preachers who preach another gospel than the Gospel of the Bible. God did not say, "pray for him", but God said, "let him be accursed". They are abandoned by God. They have forsaken God, and God has forsaken them.
Read again Rev 14:9-11. God declares in Rev 13:7-8 (2X) that almost all the world will worship the beast and his image. Therefore, when we look earnestly for a church where the true Gospel will be preached near the end of time we should not look for Christ in a large church, for in large churches you hear a popular gospel, but it is the gospel of the beast and his image. When we are worshipping a god of free-will religion, we are worshipping the beast and his image. Instead we should tremble in fear, checking and double-checking that we are not worshipping a different god than the God of the Bible. Read Rev 14:10. Does anybody fear this wrath of God? Apparently not! And what does this verse say? “If any man worships the beast and his image, he shall be tormented in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.” It does not say that the angels and the Lamb will be the tormentors. O No! The holy angels and the Lamb will be the onlookers. When people are cast into the lake of fire, who is there already? Satan is there already, and he is waiting for these little creatures whom he blames they were the cause of his sufferings in Hell, and Satan and his demons will be the tormentors of people who are cast into the lake of fire. Does no one fear? The Lord Jesus said in Matt 7:13-14, "Wide is the gate and broad is the way that leadeth to destruction (which is a synonym for Hell), and many there be which go in thereat". They are on a slippery slide into Hell. On the other hand Jesus said, "narrow is the gate and narrow is the way that leadeth unto life (a synonym for heaven), and few there be that find it". What is the probability that any of us find the narrow way? It is an incredibly small probability. It is so small that God Almighty must give it to us as a free gift, or else we will not find the narrow gate and the narrow way. What does then this narrow way represent? It is the narrow way of the Gospel of grace alone, and no free-will. That is the way that is described in the Bible as the only way. That is why it is a narrow way, because it is not a popular way at all. It is only a remnant chosen by grace who will end up on that narrow way. It is the only way that gives God all the credit and all the glory. But if there is no free will, what then is the way of escape from this slippery slide into Hell?
#4. Is There a Way of Escape? (Rom 5:15-17, Gen 15:16, Rev 14:10)
Please turn again to the Epistle to the Romans, Rom 5:15 (2X), and let us hear the conclusion of this matter. Here is the Representative Principle again. It is worth repeating, because this is the only way out of our predicament. Let us briefly summarize what we have learned so far.
#1. We have seen that God in His wisdom created the world in such a way that the world by their own wisdom knew not God. That is why the world of the unsaved is bound for Hell. #2. Spiritual death is far worse than physical death, because spiritual death leads to the 2nd death in the lake of lire, where people are tormented forever and ever. #3. Adam was the ROOT of the human race, and Adam's sin was the ROOT Sin. This ROOT Sin must develop until its fruit is ripe, or in the terms of Gen 15:16, "Until the iniquity of the Amorites is full". #4. Hell is now a condition, because Hell is now not yet a place. But on the Last Day God will reveal a super terrible place, which is called a lake of fire, and which is also called the 2nd death. #5. The full wrath of God is an awful penalty to pay, but Christ came to pay for His Elect that awful penalty, equivalent to us spending an eternity in Hell. We do not know how God counts "equivalent", but we do know that Christ's payment was accepted by God to the full satisfaction of His righteousness.
Then we read in Rom 5:15-17 about Adam's gift of sin and about Christ's gift of the full payment.
Ro 5:15-17 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
Literally God says in verse 15, "The free gift shall not be also like the offense. For if by the offense of one many died, much more the grace of God, and the gift in grace, which is of the one man, Jesus Christ, did abound to many". And then God goes on in this passage to speak about our father in the flesh, Adam, and about the Father of our new family, the family of Christ. Adam is our representative in the flesh. When we are saved we still walk around with a body, our Adamic body, that lusts after sin. But if we are saved, our souls have a different representative. Our spiritual representative is Christ. And Christ can be our representative because we have already a representative principle in place. If we do not want Adam as our representative, then Christ cannot be our representative, because we do not believe in representatives. If all human beings are a bunch of individuals, we do not have a representative principle. But if all human beings belong to one organism, then we do have a representative in the flesh, Adam. Therefore Christ, the 2nd Adam, can be the representative of His people, the elect of God. This is how God designed salvation, and we better listen.
Therefore it must be a FREE Gift. Adam's guilt was passed on to us as a free gift. We do not like this gift, but it is passed on to us whether we like it or not. We did not ask for it, but we found out that we belong to Adam's family. In like manner the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ is passed on to us without asking for our permission. This gift of righteousness is given to us through the operation of God the Holy Spirit in our hearts, giving us a regenerated soul, and giving light to our understanding that the Lord Jesus Christ has suffered for our sins and has paid the full price for all our sins. This He did when we did not exist yet, even our souls did not exist yet, and all our sins were still future sins. But this was no problem to God, because Christ was our Representative. Likewise when Adam sinned, we also did not exist yet, and our souls did not exist yet. Nevertheless, Adam's sin was accounted as guilt to our souls, and Adam's spiritual condition became our spiritual condition in body and soul. This came to pass because Adam was the representative of the entire human race.
But if we have received faith in Christ, and a faith that Christ paid it all, and a faith that the Bible in its entirety is the Word of God, and a faith that this Word of God circumscribes for us the God whom we worship, then we know that God has given us this faith. By the grace of God we have escaped the slippery slide into Hell. God has given us this gift of righteousness by His irresistible grace. And now look at the contrast. Please turn again to the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Rev 14:10 (2X).
In Rev 14 we saw the wrath of God which is poured out without mixture upon idolaters. We read in Rev 14:10
Re 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup
of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
The unsaved of mankind, called the reprobate, shall suffer under the hands of Satan and his fallen angels, while Christ and the elect angels are the onlookers. Does that strike fear in the hearts of most people? O No! Not at all! There is no fear of God before their eyes. This is the great difference between the present apostacy and the idolatry leading up to the reformation 500 years ago. At that time the idolatry was primarily generated within the Roman Catholic church, and when the people heard from the Bible that they were worshipping other gods instead of Christ, they repented and turned to the Bible to learn the truth. There was a great hunger for what the Bible says, for they realized that the Bible was the true Word of God, and not what the clergy were saying. They had the fear of God before their eyes. But today the idolatry is generated in the pews and the clergy simply conform to what the people want. They want to speak in tongues, and the clergy creates for them the doctrines to prove that God is still speaking today. They want prosperity, and the clergy simply complies and creates for them The Purpose Driven Church, or some other feel good gospel that appeals to the masses. They want miracles, signs and wonders, and the clergy organizes for them massive meetings in a stadium or in some other place where many attendants would fit, and the clergy will accommodate with as many miraculous healings as time allows. You see, the people today are not interested in what the Bible has to say. They are primarily interested in how they can massage the Bible to make it say what they intended it to say anyway. There is no fear of God before their eyes. When I asked, “Is there a way of escape?” I was referring to those people who earnestly want to listen to God’s advice. But in my personal experience I have found that almost no one really wants to listen to the Word of God. Ask the man on the street, or ask within your own family, or ask when occasionally you are within a group of people, ask people on a one to one basis, “What do you think of the Bible”. Do not be surprised by the many different ideas which people have about the Bible. They say, the Bible is only for old people, or the Bible is a crutch which we no longer need today, or the Bible is a collection of old books written by men, and those books no longer fit our present lifestyle, or the Bible is a Book to teach men how to tolerate one another, and how to live a more peaceful life with one another, or the Bible is a philosophy of life like any other philosophy of life. Look how many religions claim that they are all based on the Bible; they are all different, and the people who practice them remain as wicked as always. And so, is there a way of escape from Hell? In the life hereafter there is no more escape. But in the present life we must honestly face ourselves, and ask ourselves if we are honestly seeking for God, instead of always comparing ourselves with others who are living without God or His Bible. Instead of leaving our Bibles on the shelves, collecting dust, ask ourselves if we are willing to learn what God says in the Bible. And experience the excitement to hear the promise of God that we can be continually in the presence of the Lamb. Please turn a few pages to Rev 22:3-4 (2X), where God speaks about the bliss of the life hereafter for those on whom His favor rests.
Re 22:3-4 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.
We rejoice to be in His presence as the Bride of Christ. Therefore His name shall be in our foreheads.
AMEN. Let us turn to the Lord in prayer.