Focus on God's Word

The Anti Christ... Who Is He?

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Geoff Youlden


Series Code: FGW

Program Code: FGW000006

00:27 I remember as a young man sitting in on a lecture
00:30 listening to a preacher talk about the great beasts
00:34 of the book of Daniel.
00:36 I remember the first one was like a lion
00:42 and it had eagle's wings.
00:44 And the second was a bear. And it was a funny bear
00:47 because it was raised up on one side and it had three ribs
00:49 in its mouth. The third beast was a leopard.
00:53 And it was a strange leopard, too, because it had 4 heads
00:56 and wings. And the fourth beast was so dreadful
00:59 that even the Bible prophet couldn't imagine
01:02 what a... that an animal looked like it at all.
01:04 It was just an indescribable beast.
01:07 What I didn't understand then that I clearly understand now
01:11 is that these beasts didn't exist as beasts.
01:14 Rather they were representative of something. For example,
01:17 it's like if you picked up the newspaper tomorrow
01:22 and there you saw the kangaroo in the cartoon section
01:27 immediately what nation is in the news?
01:30 Australia... because everybody knows that the jumping kangaroo
01:35 represents Australia. Now the interesting thing is
01:40 that the idea of using animals to represent nations
01:43 did not originate with with the cartoons.
01:48 It actually originated in the Bible.
01:52 The Bible was the first book to use animals
01:55 to represent nations.
01:56 And today we're going to study an amazing prophecy
02:00 from the book of Daniel that uses animals
02:03 to represent nations like we still do today
02:07 with the kangaroo of Australia, and the lion, Great Britain,
02:10 and the eagle, America, and so forth.
02:13 So would you open your Bibles to Daniel the 7th chapter...
02:17 Daniel chapter 7 and we'll notice here verse 17.
02:22 Daniel 7 and verse 17.
02:28 Here Daniel is told after seeing these 4 great beasts...
02:32 This is what he is told in verse 17:
02:45 So you see, like we have found with the Bible
02:48 when you allow the Bible to explain itself
02:50 there is no question as to the interpretation.
02:54 The Bible has already told us the interpretation
02:58 so when we see these animals now
03:00 we immediately recognize that the Bible says they represent
03:04 kings or kingdoms.
03:06 Now if we go back to verse 2 of chapter 7
03:09 we begin to notice a description of each of these 4 animals.
03:41 Now you can see whether the artist has pictured this exactly
03:46 as Daniel saw it... I don't know.
03:48 But the picture you are seeing now is very close to what
03:51 Daniel no doubt saw.
03:53 This lion was no ordinary lion because it had eagle's wings.
03:58 But the difference with this lion is that it had a man's
04:01 heart. Now when we talk about a man having a lion's heart
04:05 what do we usually mean by that?
04:07 Yes. Strong and resilient and so forth.
04:11 Now a lion having a man's heart would be the opposite.
04:17 And the great lion of ancient history
04:20 if you went back to the ancient world and went over to Babylon
04:24 you would see the lion still. If you walk the streets
04:28 of Babylon today - which is in modern Iraq -
04:31 and you can still see the giant lions.
04:35 There's one right on the processional way.
04:38 And this lion is actually standing on a man, indicating
04:42 that the great empire of Babylon which reigned from
04:45 606 BC to 538 BC
04:50 dominated the world. And it did!
04:54 And the wings represent the speed with which Babylon was
04:58 going to conquer the world.
05:03 And it's interesting that Babylon has come down to us
05:07 as the symbol because some of you may remember
05:09 a few years ago when you went to the supermarket you
05:11 could buy dates. And the brand of date that you could buy
05:16 was called The Lion of Babylon dates
05:20 because they came from Iraq.
05:23 And I don't think that there would be too many authorities
05:27 that would disagree that the lion represents Babylon.
05:31 That great kingdom: probably the greatest kingdom
05:34 that ever pressed this earth.
05:36 And it became its most popular period under a king by the
05:40 name of Nebuchadnezzar.
05:42 It's often called the neo-Babylonian empire.
05:45 But Babylon wasn't going to last forever because the Bible
05:49 went on to say in verse 5:
06:06 Now when the Babylonian empire fell in the year 538 BC
06:10 it was followed by the next world-dominating power.
06:13 And you historians will remember who it was.
06:17 Who was it? Yes... the Medes and the Persians
06:21 represented here by this bear standing up on one side
06:25 indicating that one of the sides was stronger than the other
06:29 or higher than the other. It was a coalition government
06:32 like Austria-Hungary in the last war...
06:34 the Medes and the Persians.
06:35 In fact you can go over to Iran today where the
06:38 ancient city of Persepolis,
06:40 the headquarters of the Mede and Persian empire.
06:43 And you can see all over the walls... I have walked around
06:46 the city. You can see a flat hat on a soldier followed by
06:51 a round hat. A flat hat, a round hat. A flat hat,
06:54 a round hat because there was a Mede followed by a Persian.
06:57 A Mede followed by a Persian. A Mede followed by a Persian.
07:02 And as I walked around I saw
07:04 where the stone had been protected from the elements
07:07 and they still had that mirror finish on that stone.
07:11 You could see your own picture reflected in the stone.
07:14 And I thought to myself: "what an amazing city
07:17 it must have been in its hey-day! "
07:19 And the three ribs in its mouth represent the three nations
07:23 that the Medes and the Persians overthrew -
07:26 Babylon, Lydia, and Egypt -
07:28 in order to conquer the world.
07:30 But even the Medes and the Persians weren't going to last
07:32 forever because the Bible says... verse 6:
07:46 Now once again this leopard is no ordinary leopard.
07:49 As you can see it's got four heads and wings.
07:53 We know very well that a leopard is known for its speed.
07:56 And this next power that was going to take over
07:59 in the year 331 BC when the Medes and the Persians fell -
08:04 because they reigned from 538 BC to 331 BC -
08:08 then the next world power that came on in the year 331
08:12 was none other than the great Grecian empire
08:16 led by Alexander the Great, the great Macedonian king.
08:21 An amazing man.
08:23 Conquered the then-known world by the age of 33.
08:28 And when you think of the map...
08:31 If you could imagine the map laid out before you
08:34 right through to the borders of India right from the
08:37 most extreme west right through to the borders of India
08:41 Alexander the Great had conquered the then-known world.
08:44 An amazing man.
08:45 Probably the greatest general the world has ever known.
08:49 And the wings represent the speed with which he was going to
08:53 conquer the world. And it's interesting that
08:55 Alexander the Great had 120 generals, and they all fought
08:58 among one another as to who was going to become the next
09:01 Alexander the Great when he died.
09:03 And it's interesting that they reduced themselves
09:06 to exactly four: Lysimachus,
09:09 Cassander, Ptolemy, and Seleucus.
09:13 And they divided his empire north, south, east, and west.
09:17 For example, the Ptolemy... the Ptolemaic empire...
09:22 what part of the world was that?
09:24 That's the Egyptian part of the world.
09:26 And you remember reading about Marc Antony and Cleopatra.
09:32 And so his kingdom was divided into four divisions.
09:36 But even Alexander's wonderful kingdom finally came to an end
09:41 in the year 168 BC.
09:43 And it was going to be followed by the fourth world empire.
09:46 Verse 7:
10:08 Now this 4th beast was just... Well, Daniel couldn't
10:13 think of a beast that looked like it.
10:15 And the artist has tried to do his best, too, to figure what
10:18 it would have looked like. And this beast was different
10:21 because it had 10 horns.
10:23 And Daniel's attention now was centered on those 10 horns.
10:27 And by the way, what was the power that took over
10:31 when Greece fell in the year 168 BC?
10:35 By the way, this was the power that was ruling when Jesus
10:38 was born and continued right through until the year 476 AD.
10:43 It lasted longer than any of the other world powers.
10:45 What was the power? The Roman Empire.
10:48 We're down in more familiar ground here.
10:51 Daniel's attention now was going to be riveted on those 10 horns
10:55 because he says in verse 8:
11:12 So as Daniel was watching this power,
11:16 these 10 horns, he then noticed
11:18 another little horn that came up and actually uprooted
11:21 three of those ten.
11:26 Daniel's attention couldn't be taken off this little horn.
11:31 And if you come over to verse 23
11:34 on the next page it tells us a little bit more about
11:37 what was going to happen. Verse 23:
11:49 Verse 24: the ten horns are what?
12:06 So here the Bible makes it very, very clear
12:09 that among those ten horns
12:13 was going to come up this little horn,
12:15 uproot three of those horns.
12:18 Now when Rome finally fell in the year 476 AD...
12:24 You see, if I'd been writing the Bible I would have been tempted
12:26 to say that if Babylon was followed by Medo-Persia,
12:28 Medo-Persia was followed in turn by Greece,
12:31 Greece in turn was followed by Rome,
12:33 what would you naturally think?
12:35 That when Rome fell it would be followed by a 5th world empire.
12:39 But the prophet said "no. "
12:41 The prophet said it's going to be divided into 10 divisions.
12:46 And it was actually the Barbarians coming down
12:49 from the north and from the south... the Vandals coming up
12:52 from the south that attacked Rome's borders.
12:54 And finally Rome began to fall.
12:57 And it was completed in the year 476 AD.
13:02 And the interesting thing is out of those 10 divisions
13:05 come what we call Europe today.
13:08 Because it was the break-up of the Roman Empire that
13:12 gives us our nations of Europe today. For example,
13:14 the Anglo-Saxons became known as the British.
13:19 The Alemanni were the Germans.
13:22 The Franks were the French.
13:24 And basically our nations of Europe today have come about
13:28 because of the break-up of the Roman Empire.
13:32 Because God said it would never be another world one empire
13:36 that would unite Europe. Instead Europe will be fragmented.
13:41 And of those ten, three are not going to survive.
13:45 And the three that finally didn't survive
13:49 were the Heruli, the Vandals, and the Ostrogoths.
13:51 They were absorbed by the rising power in Italy.
13:56 Because that power was a religious power as well as a
14:00 political power, and so they subdued those other 3 nations.
14:05 And that's why we haven't got any remnants of the Heruli,
14:07 the Ostrogoths, or the Vandals today
14:11 because they have all gone.
14:13 But in verse 25 God went on to describe in more detail
14:17 what this little horn was going to do.
14:19 Because the rest of the chapter now centers about
14:22 what this little horn was going to do. Verse 25:
14:39 The intention, the Bible says, of this little horn will be to
14:43 change the law of God and the times within the law.
14:48 Its sole aim would be to attack God's law.
14:53 It would not only do that, it would speak great words
14:57 against the Most High.
14:58 Now before we identify the antichrist
15:00 because that's what we need to do this afternoon
15:02 we need to have a look and remind ourselves
15:05 what Jesus said about the law.
15:07 Just come over to Matthew chapter 5 in the New Testament.
15:09 Matthew the 5th chapter.
15:12 And we'll notice just before we venture any further
15:15 what Jesus said about the law. Matthew 5 and verse 17
15:20 where Jesus said here in verse 17:
15:31 You see, there were some people in Jesus' day who thought
15:34 that His purpose was to destroy or do away with the law.
15:38 And Jesus said: "Don't you think that I've come to do that
15:41 at all! I haven't come to destroy it;
15:43 I've come to fulfill it. "
15:44 That word fulfill means to fully preach
15:46 because Jesus said on another occasion
15:48 "I have come to fulfill all righteousness. "
15:51 Now that doesn't mean to do away with it.
15:52 It means to fully preach it, to expand it out
15:55 so everybody would understand it.
15:57 And here Jesus came to fully preach the law.
16:01 "Don't think I've come to destroy it. "
16:02 And He made that very clear in verse 17... verse 18:
16:16 That jot and tittle is probably not an expression that you use
16:20 today. What it means is... We have an equivalent in English
16:24 and the equivalent is... You know, when you're writing
16:26 out a passage you might... you go back and you dot
16:29 your i's and you cross your t's?
16:30 That's the jot and the tittle in the original language.
16:34 And Jesus said: "Even the dotting of an i
16:37 or the crossing of a t will not pass from the law
16:41 while heaven is above and earth beneath. "
16:44 Now I don't think anybody in the world would suggest that
16:47 heaven's been done away with and the earth been done away with.
16:50 So not even the dotting of an i or the crossing of a t
16:53 will pass while heaven is above and earth beneath.
16:57 Verse 19:
17:13 And Jesus said: "If you want to be called great
17:15 in the kingdom of heaven, you keep the commandments
17:17 yourself and you teach others to keep them. "
17:21 But He said: "If you want to have no part in God's kingdom,
17:24 don't keep the commandments yourself and you teach others
17:27 that they've been done away with. "
17:28 It's a very serious thing to say that the Ten Commandments
17:31 have been done away with. And yet we have just read
17:34 back in the book of Daniel where God says
17:36 there's going to come a power and that power's great
17:40 aim will be to do away with the law of God.
17:45 Jesus said He would never do away with it.
17:47 And there's no question that He's talking about the
17:49 Ten Commandments because He quotes from some of them.
17:52 If you go down to verse 21, for example. It says:
18:02 And then if you go down to verse 27:
18:04 "You have heard that it was said to those of old 'you shall
18:07 not commit adultery. ' " So Jesus was quoting
18:09 from some of the Ten Commandments, and He says
18:12 "As long as heaven is above and earth beneath
18:15 not even the dotting of an i or the crossing of a t
18:19 will pass from that law. "
18:22 And yet we have read about a power back there
18:24 in the book of Daniel that's going to think itself
18:27 able to change the law of God.
18:31 You know, it's not a very popular thing today
18:33 to teach and uphold the Ten Commandments.
18:36 Now some of you may wonder about that statement
18:40 but it's true, let me tell you.
18:41 You tell people that you're planning on keeping the
18:44 commandments and all of the commandments and mention
18:47 the Sabbath and see what happens.
18:48 I'll guarantee the next breath
18:51 that the person breathes that you're talking to
18:53 will tell you that that's all been done away with.
18:56 Nailed to the cross.
18:59 No longer do Christians have to keep the law.
19:02 Free from the law... oh happy condition. Sin all you like,
19:06 there's plenty of remission.
19:08 That's not the teaching of the Bible let me tell you
19:11 because Jesus said: "As long as heaven is above and earth
19:15 beneath there'll be no change, not even the dotting of an i
19:19 or the crossing of the t. "
19:21 You know, it's an interesting thing that I find very
19:23 interesting is this: the only part of the Bible
19:26 that God actually wrote Himself was the Ten Commandments.
19:29 Is that true? Yes it is!
19:32 And He didn't write it once, He wrote them twice
19:34 when Moses broke them.
19:35 So sacred were the Ten Commandments
19:38 God didn't even trust Moses to write those down.
19:41 He wrote them Himself,
19:43 and yet that is the one part of the Bible today
19:46 that many Christians want to do away with.
19:48 Strange, isn't it?
19:50 That's the center of the Bible that's under attack today...
19:53 not by those who don't believe in God
19:57 but by those who professedly say they do believe in God.
20:03 People say to me: "Well maybe if... if Jesus
20:08 didn't do away with the commandments, maybe the
20:10 apostles did away with them. "
20:11 Well now listen, friend... how dare the apostles
20:13 do away with the commandments if Jesus didn't. Is that right?
20:17 How dare they? But of course, they didn't!
20:20 And there's no record anywhere
20:22 in the Bible where any of the apostles attempted to change
20:25 or alter the law of God.
20:27 Now we must make a distinction here between
20:29 the Ten Commandments and the law of the Jews.
20:31 We're not talking about the law of the Jews.
20:33 That was done away with when Jesus died on the cross.
20:36 Well much of it was done away with.
20:37 We are talking about the Ten Commandments
20:39 that have never been and never will be
20:42 abrogated or changed.
20:44 In fact, let me read you what Jesus said over here in the
20:47 book of Revelation.
20:48 Come over to Revelation chapter 22 and verse 14.
20:55 Revelation 22 and verse 14
20:58 where John the Revelator writes this down:
21:11 Almost the last statement of scripture God says
21:13 "Blessed are those who do His commandments. "
21:17 Those who keep the commandments are specially blessed by God.
21:21 The Bible says: "blessed are those who do the commandments. "
21:25 See that's worth striving after, isn't it? To be blessed by God.
21:30 So if you and I want to be blessed by God
21:33 part of that is to keep His commandments.
21:35 Come down to verse 18.
21:58 And so we have been told we must not add
22:02 and we must not subtract anything from God's Word.
22:06 And yet we have read already in the book of Daniel
22:09 about the antichrist power who is going to think himself
22:13 able to attempt to change the law of God.
22:17 Jesus said He would never do it.
22:19 But He did predict that there was going to be a power
22:24 that would think himself able to do it.
22:26 Now when we talk about the antichrist
22:31 the antichrist is a power that's not necessarily
22:36 anti against God.
22:38 Unfortunately in our English language we generally use
22:42 the word anti to mean if you're anti something
22:44 you're against it.
22:46 But that's not primarily the meaning of the Bible
22:50 when it talks about the antichrist.
22:52 Its primary meaning means "in place of Christ. "
22:57 So when God has a truth, the devil has something
23:01 that he puts in place of that which God gave.
23:05 Like we spoke the other night about the counterfeit.
23:08 A counterfeit looks like and appears like the genuine thing.
23:12 But there are subtle differences.
23:15 Just like in this... If I didn't tell you that this $50 note
23:20 was a counterfeit, you wouldn't know because
23:24 everything about it looks like the real genuine thing.
23:27 But there are subtle changes made
23:30 which makes it a counterfeit.
23:32 And that's how the devil has worked.
23:34 Down through the years the devil has counterfeited
23:37 by changing subtly some things
23:40 still maintaining the outward appearance of the genuine.
23:45 So using Biblical terminology
23:49 but changing the very essence of what it stands for.
23:53 That's what the devil has done.
23:55 And that's why the Bible calls him the antichrist.
23:59 He has come with a religion in place of
24:02 the religion that God gave.
24:04 And unless you study the Bible you wouldn't know
24:07 the difference. You see the Bible tells us
24:09 that the devil works by substitution.
24:14 For he knows that atheism has never been very popular
24:17 even in Russia and those places that avowedly declared
24:21 themselves Communist and atheist
24:23 the vast majority of people really in those countries
24:26 weren't atheist. And that's why as soon as the Iron Curtain fell
24:28 the people just rushed back to church.
24:30 Because deeply rooted in the heart of every individual
24:33 is the desire to worship.
24:35 And even in secular Australia people still worship something.
24:38 They may not worship the true God
24:40 but they worship money or they worship sport
24:42 or they worship this or with that.
24:44 Because deeply rooted in our hearts when God made us
24:47 He made us to worship.
24:48 And the devil knows that. That's why he comes along
24:52 and he's not worried about a person going to church.
24:54 He's not even worried about a person who reads the Bible
24:57 as long as they do not follow exactly what the Bible says.
25:03 That's when the devil really gets upset:
25:05 if you start to be serious about following!
25:09 Because he wants to bring a religion along that will be
25:12 a substitute. That will look like the real thing
25:17 but in actual fact subtle changes have been made.
25:21 Now he attempted to do that in the days of Jesus.
25:24 In fact, in the days of Jesus it's exactly the same
25:27 as it is today... the situation. Let me read it to you.
25:29 Come over the Matthew the 15th chapter.
25:32 Matthew chapter 15, and I'll read you the situation
25:35 that Jesus was up against in His day.
25:39 Matthew 15 and we will read here verse 2.
25:43 Because the disciples and Jesus were confronted by the
25:46 religious leaders: the scribes and the Pharisees.
25:49 This is what they said to them... verse 2:
26:00 Now let me just pause here.
26:01 This washing of the hands had nothing to do with hygiene.
26:04 They believed - the Jews believed - that if you put a bit
26:06 of water between your wrists and rubbed them together
26:08 then everything that you touched was then ceremonially clean.
26:12 Get the idea?
26:13 Now you'll never read about that in the Bible.
26:15 That is a tradition. That is that is a teaching that was
26:19 taught by the church. It's not a teaching in the Bible.
26:23 And so when Jesus came along
26:25 He didn't rub His hands together like the Pharisees
26:29 and like the rest of the Jews.
26:31 And so He was in conflict with them because He didn't follow
26:34 those traditions.
26:35 Notice what Jesus said in verse 3:
26:47 Can you see how the devil had deceived these people?
26:49 That while they were earnestly following what their church said
26:52 in actual fact what were they doing contrary
26:55 to in their teaching?
26:58 Yeah, they were against the commandments.
27:01 Can you see? The more earnest they were in following
27:03 what the church said the more they were breaking one of
27:05 God's Ten Commandments. In this case it happened to be
27:07 commandment number five
27:08 as you read the rest of the story.
27:10 That's how the devil had deceived them.
27:13 So the more earnest and sincere they were
27:16 in doing what the church said the more they were breaking
27:19 one of God's Ten Commandments.
27:20 And Jesus finally summed it up in verse 9 when He said:
27:33 And I don't care what church it's in, if you and I
27:36 are following teachings that are based on the mere commandments
27:40 of men, Jesus said that is vain or useless.
27:43 People say to me: "Well Geoff, how did the devil deceive people
27:47 into believing that tradition was above the Bible
27:50 and the commandments of God? "
27:51 Well, to understand that we must go back in our minds
27:54 and remember that the world that the disciples were born into
27:59 was not a Christian world. It was a pagan world.
28:02 And the world that Jesus came to preach to was
28:05 basically a pagan world.
28:07 They all worshiped the sun... sun worship.
28:12 And they had the sun and the moon
28:16 and five of the planets that they understood.
28:19 And these were part of their deity worship.
28:23 And so when it came to naming the days of the week
28:26 they named then in honor of their gods.
28:29 The first day was named in honor of their god
28:34 the sun, hence the name Sunsday. And we still call it Sunday.
28:39 That's where it came from.
28:40 Sun worship... in our very language still.
28:44 The next most important god to the pagans was the moon.
28:48 And they called the second day of the week moon day.
28:51 We have shortened it to Monday
28:52 but that's where the name comes from.
28:54 And for the pagans they had five planets... they knew of
28:57 five planets and so they named the rest of the days of the week
29:01 Tiwesday, Wodansday, Thorsday,
29:03 Frigersday and Saturnsday.
29:05 And basically that's how the names of the days of the week
29:09 have come down to us in the English language.
29:12 Because the Bible doesn't call the days of the week like that
29:15 at all. The Bible calls the days of the week
29:18 first day, second day, third day, fourth day,
29:21 fifth day, Preparation Day, Sabbath.
29:24 That's how the Bible names the days of the week.
29:26 But the pagans said: "No! Sunday, Monday,
29:29 Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday. "
29:32 And we in the English language have directly followed
29:36 the pagans through the Romans through the Latin and
29:39 we have brought this directly into our language today.
29:43 Now let's just remind ourselves as we go back to the
29:46 Ten Commandments how God set the days of the week out.
29:49 Come back to Exodus chapter 20 at the beginning of the Bible.
29:53 Page 71: Exodus chapter 20 and verse 8.
29:57 And we will just remind ourselves of the fourth
30:01 of the Ten Commandments.
30:03 Exodus 20 verse 8:
30:16 So right back from the beginning the Ten Commandments
30:18 set forth that the seventh day was the Sabbath.
30:22 Now in the New Testament it's exactly the same.
30:25 Because if you come over into the New Testament
30:27 to the book of Mark the 15th chapter... Mark chapter 15...
30:31 we will notice that there is no difference between the
30:34 Old and the New Testament on this teaching.
30:37 Mark 15 and verse 42. Verse 42 says:
30:51 So right back there in the New Testament too
30:54 it was the same cycle of days.
30:57 We have the Preparation Day. That is, the day before the
31:00 Sabbath. And it's interesting that if you go over to Greece
31:02 today they still use the same word for Friday
31:04 that they used in Bible times.
31:06 It's still called the Preparation Day.
31:08 And Sabbath is still called the Sabbath in Greece today
31:12 because that's the very language.
31:14 That's the day that Jesus was crucified.
31:16 Now perhaps someone is saying: "Well Geoff, are you suggesting
31:20 today that my parents and my family who were good earnest
31:23 Christians and went to church on Sunday
31:25 were pagans and they weren't Christians?
31:27 Is that what you're saying? "
31:28 No, I'm not saying that at all.
31:30 But what I am saying is this:
31:32 that when God brings light to our path and He shows us
31:36 what He wants us to do,
31:38 when we earnestly love the Lord we will then want to get
31:42 our life in harmony with what God wants us to do.
31:44 Because the book of Acts says at the times of their ignorance
31:48 God winked at, but now He has brought light to our path
31:53 and He has brought us a consciousness of right and wrong
31:58 and He wants us to follow that.
32:01 And we would never spank or punish a child
32:03 for doing something that he or she didn't understand
32:06 to be right or wrong. But if we explained it to them
32:08 as parents, then we expect them to be obedient.
32:11 And that's the way God is with us.
32:13 He doesn't hold us responsible for things on the past
32:16 of our ignorance. But He does expect us... When we know
32:20 a thing to be right He then does expect us to be obedient.
32:23 Well you say: "How then did Sunday get into the church?
32:28 I can understand how the pagans worshiped it
32:30 but how did it get into the church? "
32:33 Well, in order to answer that we need to read
32:35 two major scriptures. Come over to the book of Acts.
32:38 And first of all, Acts chapter 20 and verse 28.
32:43 And we will notice here Paul's admonition
32:45 to the leadership of the church at Ephesus.
32:48 And he gave them a very strong warning
32:50 in Acts 20 and verse 28 where he says:
33:26 Now Paul calls these wicked people "wolves. "
33:32 And these wolves... where were they going to come from?
33:35 Were they going to come from without and attack the church
33:38 from without? Or were they going to come from within
33:40 the church and attack the church from within?
33:42 Within or without? Within.
33:45 And I want to remind you that the greatest attacks
33:47 that have ever been made against the church have always been
33:50 made from within.
33:52 And Paul calls these savage wolves.
33:56 Now if you come over to II Thessalonians -
33:58 just a little bit further on: II Thessalonians -
34:01 we'll notice again very clearly how Paul explains in more detail
34:06 what these "wicked wolves" were going to teach.
34:09 II Thessalonians chapter 2 and verse 1
34:15 where he writes here:
34:33 You see there were people teaching in the days of Paul
34:36 that Christ was going to come back in the first century.
34:38 And they were forging Paul's signature and sending letters
34:41 out to all the church members. And Paul says "even if you
34:43 get a letter signed by me saying that Christ's coming
34:46 is at hand, don't believe it. " Why?
34:48 Verse 3:
35:13 So a man was going to come in the church.
35:15 He was going to claim to be God on earth
35:17 and people were going to worship him.
35:19 I tell you, you've got tremendous power over people
35:22 when they worship you. Isn't that right?
35:24 Tremendous power. And that's what happened in the church.
35:27 And Paul went on to say in verse 7 describing the teaching
35:31 of this man of sin:
35:36 So the antichrist was beginning in Paul's day.
35:39 He's already at work. And what was the characteristic?
35:42 What was the major teaching of the antichrist here?
35:44 Lawlessness.
35:46 Now lawlessness simply means to be opposed to the law of God.
35:50 Not subject to the law of God.
35:52 This is the same power that Daniel spoke about
35:55 who was going to oppose the law of God.
35:57 Now Paul is explaining in more detail that it would begin early
36:02 in the Christian period. It was beginning in Paul's day...
36:05 this teaching of lawlessness. Verse 8:
36:15 So how long is this lawless one going to be allowed to continue
36:19 in the world? Right through until Jesus comes
36:23 when he's going to be destroyed by the brightness of His coming.
36:26 So obviously the antichrist is not one individual
36:28 because no one individual lives for 2,000 years.
36:31 The antichrist is a religious system that began very early
36:35 in the Christian period and continues right through
36:37 until Jesus destroys it when He comes the second time.
36:41 And its major teaching will be lawlessness or being opposed
36:47 to the law of God. Now I'm going to give you
36:50 a sheet of paper. I'm going to ask the ushers
36:53 if you wouldn't mind just handing that out.
36:55 Those of you that are watching your television sets
37:00 will now see it on the screen.
37:03 We're going to hand you out a copy of the Ten Commandments
37:06 as they appear in the Bible and as they appear for millions
37:11 of Christians today in the world.
37:14 And I don't want to be attacking anyone here today
37:17 in doing this, but nevertheless we need to be honest.
37:19 So remember I have said to you that the antichrist counterfeits
37:24 every single teaching in the Bible.
37:27 Here is a perfect illustration of what we're saying.
37:29 God had Ten Commandments and the devil or the antichrist
37:33 has a counterfeit Ten Commandments.
37:35 But they're still called Ten Commandments.
37:37 Now look, when you get your sheet and you compare the left
37:40 with the right, the left is what God wrote
37:42 as the Ten Commandments in the Bible.
37:44 The right is as they have been changed for millions of
37:47 Christians today. Without reading a single word
37:50 what's the first thing that hits you?
37:54 It is how much abbreviated what man has written
37:57 compared with what God wrote.
37:59 Two-thirds have been left out.
38:02 And when you look at the commandments, the first one
38:05 we wouldn't disagree with.
38:12 God said: "don't make any images.
38:15 Nothing that looks like anything in heaven.
38:18 And don't bow down to it and don't worship it. "
38:21 But that got in their road so they simply left it out.
38:25 And so there is no #2 that is a parallel
38:30 to God's #2. Their #2 is parallel to God's #3...
38:34 even though it's shortened.
38:40 And if you have a look at #2 on the other side
38:42 it says: "thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God
38:44 in vain. " See what they've done?
38:46 Well you say: "They must only have 9 commandments. "
38:49 No, they've got 10.
38:50 Let me explain how they get their 10.
38:52 If you go down to the bottom it says #10 on God's side
39:04 If you go over to the other side now and have a look at
39:07 #9 and #10, #9 says:
39:11 #10 says:
39:14 What have they done to make up #10?
39:16 Yeah, they've split God's #10 into two to make up ten.
39:20 But it's still called Ten Commandments.
39:22 And when you meet these people you say: "Well do you believe
39:24 in the Ten Commandments? " "Yes, " they say.
39:26 But they've got in mind the right-hand side;
39:30 you've got in mind the left-hand side.
39:32 Can you see how the devil has counterfeited?
39:33 And unless you've studied your Bible you wouldn't know
39:36 the difference. That's why it is so important
39:40 to know the difference. And as I said, this is the way
39:43 hundreds of millions in the world today
39:46 believe that the Ten Commandments are.
39:49 Now by the way, what I'm going to share with you now
39:52 is so clear that you can check this up in your history books,
39:57 in the encyclopedias, or in your Internet.
40:00 There are two men who are responsible for bringing Sunday
40:04 into the Christian church. Neither of these men's names
40:06 appear in the Bible.
40:08 The first man's name is Tertullian of Carthage
40:11 and the second man's name is Clement of Alexandria.
40:15 These men were the first men to bring or call Sunday
40:19 the Lord's Day. Up until they came along
40:23 every prophet in the Bible upheld the Sabbath as
40:27 the Lord's Day.
40:30 Well you say: "How did Sunday get in? "
40:32 Well in the year 125 AD
40:35 a man by the name of Sixtus spelled S-I-X-T-U-S
40:38 came along. And he proposed that the Christian church
40:42 ought to remember once a year
40:44 the resurrection of Christ.
40:49 Seventy-five years later another man by the name of Bertar
40:52 came along. And Bertar said that anybody that didn't go along
40:56 with the annual observance of the resurrection
40:58 ought to be excommunicated from the church.
41:01 So that further increased the idea
41:05 of people believing in Sunday as the resurrection.
41:09 Then between 200 AD and 314 AD
41:12 the annual observance of Sunday
41:15 as a memorial of the resurrection
41:17 gradually became a weekly observance.
41:20 So we have these two days being kept now:
41:22 the Sabbath in the Bible and Sunday as the memorial
41:25 of the resurrection. Can you see?
41:27 Both alongside one another.
41:29 And then in the year 314 AD
41:32 Constantine made a law in which he said
41:35 every government worker can have a holiday on Sunday.
41:39 Well I've never known a govern- ment worker yet to turn down
41:42 a holiday, have you?
41:44 That was embraced,
41:47 and it remained that way for a number of years.
41:49 And then the private sector said: "This is not fair!
41:53 Why should civil servants be allowed to have a holiday
41:56 on Sunday and we've got to work? "
41:58 And they appealed to Constantine.
42:01 And he saw some light in that, and so on the 7th of March
42:04 in the year 321 AD
42:08 Constantine made a law in which he said
42:11 "Everybody in the Roman Empire can have a holiday
42:14 on Sunday. " And that's why still Sunday is regarded
42:17 as a holiday. We have continued it from the
42:21 time of Constantine when it was first made a holiday.
42:24 And you see it was easy for people to accept that, remember?
42:28 Because they had been worshiping on Sunday as pagans.
42:31 You can go over to Rome today and see the Parthenon.
42:34 And there, the Parth... You can see the big hole
42:37 in the ceiling where the sun shines.
42:38 Where it used to shine right on where the people used to worship
42:41 their sacrifice. You can still see it today
42:44 because that was a pagan temple.
42:48 Still standing.
42:51 And it was very easy for these people to accept the idea of
42:54 Sunday because they had been brought up to honor Sunday
42:58 as the day of worship as a pagan.
43:02 And what they said is: "Look, it's very simple.
43:05 Now no longer are you going to worship the sun in the sky.
43:08 Now you can worship the Son of God. "
43:10 And as the Roman soldiers went out through the world
43:13 they took Sunday with them.
43:16 And when they got over to England, for example,
43:18 they met stiff resistance in the Celtic church
43:21 who were Sabbath keepers.
43:22 And finally the Celtic church had to relinquish because
43:25 the Roman soldiers and the army defeated the Celtic church.
43:28 You've heard of Patrick of Ireland.
43:30 He never kept Sunday in his entire life.
43:32 He was a Sabbath keeper.
43:33 And all the early Christians were all Sabbath keepers.
43:40 And then finally a council was called
43:43 on January 18, 1563,
43:47 in which Casper del Fosso got up and made a speech
43:49 in which he said that tradition was above the Bible.
43:52 And all the delegates to that council all said:
43:54 "Yes, we agree with you Casper del Fosso. "
43:56 And since that time the official position
43:59 of the church has been that tradition is above the Bible.
44:04 The Bible has to be interpreted by tradition or by the church.
44:08 The church has the final word on interpreting the Bible.
44:11 That's still their position today.
44:13 That was made an official position in 1563 AD.
44:19 And then in the year 1770 a man by the name of
44:22 Captain James Cook came out to this part of the world
44:26 and founded the first settlement with Arthur Phillip.
44:29 And they taught their children to keep Sunday.
44:33 And their children taught their children to keep Sunday.
44:35 Until your great great great great grandfather taught
44:37 your great great great grandfather Sunday.
44:40 And your great great great grandfather taught your
44:41 great great grandfather Sunday.
44:43 And your great great grandfather taught your great great
44:45 grandfather Sunday... Your great great grandfather
44:47 taught your great grandfather Sunday.
44:48 Your great grandfather taught your grandfather Sunday.
44:50 Your grandfather taught your father Sunday.
44:53 Your father taught you Sunday.
44:55 And that's how we all came to keep Sunday.
44:59 So Captain James Cook came over to this part of the world
45:02 in a boat. He brought Sunday over here with him in a boat
45:05 and now we're all in the same boat.
45:08 Friend, that's how it happened. Truly!
45:10 Because from the Old World came Sunday.
45:15 The same was with America.
45:16 Sunday came over from the Old World.
45:20 And wherever the Roman soldiers went around the world
45:22 they took Sunday with them.
45:24 But listen: the Bible not only says that this power was
45:27 going to the law of God. Just come back to Daniel chapter 7
45:32 and notice what else the Bible says that this power
45:35 was going to do because this is important.
45:38 Daniel 7 and verse 25.
45:40 Look at this: Daniel 7 and verse 25.
45:59 Not just the law but the time.
46:03 Now listen. Just take those Ten Commandments...
46:05 that sheet that you've got. Those viewing on television
46:08 can see it on the screen now.
46:10 Just have a look at God's Ten Commandments.
46:13 #10 down the bottom: does that talk about time?
46:16 Does it mention time? No.
46:19 #9 doesn't mention anything about time nor does #8.
46:23 #7 doesn't mention time nor does #6 nor does #5.
46:27 None of those commandments mention anything about time.
46:30 Is that true? #1... does that mention anything about time? No.
46:34 #2... does that mention anything about time? No.
46:38 #3... does that mention anything about time? No.
46:42 What about #4?
46:43 "Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy.
46:45 Six days shalt thou labor and do all thy work
46:48 but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. "
46:51 Does it mention time?
46:53 The whole commandment is based around time
46:57 for God said that the seventh day is the Sabbath.
47:00 And this power, the Bible said, would not only change
47:03 the Sabbath... the law but also change the Sabbath itself.
47:09 But listen: not only have they changed the day
47:12 but do you know that they have actually changed the time
47:14 that the day is to be kept?
47:16 Come back to Leviticus chapter 23.
47:18 Leviticus chapter 23.
47:20 And while this is concerning one of the ceremonial Sabbaths
47:24 nevertheless the principle still applies
47:27 to the seventh-day Sabbath.
47:28 We'll talk about those Sabbaths tomorrow in our meeting.
47:31 But have a look at verse 32.
47:34 This is Leviticus chapter 23 and verse 32. It says:
47:55 So when does the Bible say the Sabbath is to be kept?
47:57 From evening to evening.
48:00 Now, following the principle that we have been outlining
48:04 comparing scripture with scripture. We don't just guess
48:06 when the evening begins. We must go to the Bible
48:09 to find out when the evening begins.
48:11 To do that come over to the New Testament
48:13 Mark chapter 1 and verse 32.
48:15 Mark chapter 1 and verse 32 and here it tells us
48:19 when the evening begins.
48:22 When the Biblical evening begins.
48:24 Mark 1 verse 32 says:
48:32 In other words, when does the day begin and end Biblically?
48:37 From sunset to sunset.
48:41 All through the Bible that principle applies.
48:43 That's why in Genesis chapter 1 it says "the evening and
48:46 the morning were the first day. "
48:47 "The evening and the morning were the second day. "
48:49 Because the evening part of the day always starts first.
48:53 Because if you take from sunset to sunset
48:55 it's the dark part that comes before the light part,
48:57 isn't that right? Evening to evening.
49:01 And all through the Bible you have that.
49:04 Paul said on one occasion "Don't let the sun go down
49:06 on your wrath. " If you've had a difference with someone,
49:08 don't allow the day to end until you've made that right.
49:12 Sunset to sunset. But when this power came along
49:16 it actually changed the very reckoning of time.
49:19 Remember on Friday afternoon when Jesus died it said:
49:23 "And the Sabbath drew on... "
49:26 because the Sabbath was to begin that Friday afternoon
49:29 when Jesus was crucified at sunset that night.
49:32 That's why it says: "The Sabbath drew on... "
49:35 But when this power came along it not only changed
49:38 the Sabbath into Sunday
49:41 but it also changed the very reckoning of time.
49:46 Because instead of keeping a day now from sunset to sunset
49:49 we now keep a day from midnight to midnight.
49:53 And that's come down to us from this power.
49:56 Let me read you what the Catholic Encyclopedia says
49:59 on the article "Sunday. "
50:21 And so it was during the Dark Ages
50:24 that this church - the Medieval church -
50:27 not only changed the Sabbath but they changed the time
50:30 when the Sabbath was to be kept.
50:32 And so instead of sunset to sunset
50:34 now we keep a day from midnight to midnight.
50:38 You know, I often smile when people go out and
50:41 spend all their night on New Year's Eve.
50:43 You know, why do we have New Year's Eve?
50:46 Why do we have Christmas Eve?
50:48 If you were like me when I was brought up we used to get
50:50 presents on Christmas Eve.
50:52 You know, we'd go to sleep as kids and they'd fill our
50:54 pillowcase with presents.
50:56 Why is that done the night before Christmas?
50:59 I'll tell you why. Because originally
51:02 Christmas Day began at sunset the night before!
51:04 That's why. We've continued the tradition even though we've
51:07 changed the day from midnight to midnight.
51:10 New Year's Eve... the night before.
51:13 You know, I smile. People go out at midnight
51:15 thinking it's welcoming the new year in.
51:18 I want to tell you: the new year began at sunset that night.
51:20 They are three or four hours too late
51:24 when the day... when the new year comes in
51:26 because it's sunset to sunset.
51:29 A friend of mine was telling me some years ago
51:31 that he used to like to go to the church dances.
51:35 Because he said, you know, the prettiest girls used to go
51:38 to the church dances. And they used to like to go...
51:40 the boys used to like to go to the church dances.
51:43 And he said it was very awkward because the church would not
51:46 allow them to dance after midnight on Saturday night.
51:51 Now don't ask me to defend that; I can't.
51:53 But that was the law of the church.
51:55 I guess because they said well Sunday begins after midnight,
51:58 see? So they can't dance on Sunday
52:00 but you can dance on Saturday night.
52:02 And he said for young fellows it was very awkward
52:06 sometimes because it would take you and hour or two to pluck up
52:08 some courage to ask the girl that you really wanted to ask
52:11 for a dance. And he said sometimes it might be
52:15 quarter past eleven, half past eleven at night
52:18 and you realize "I've only got half an hour left
52:21 to really get on with this girl, " see?
52:25 So he said what one of the boys would do...
52:27 He said they would go up to the clock
52:29 and they would give it a flick back an hour.
52:32 Give themselves an extra hour, you see.
52:36 What happens in daylight saving?
52:38 Well I'll tell you. Daylight saving we're around one hour
52:41 different from winter to summer, isn't that right?
52:44 If you're going to observe it from midnight to midnight,
52:47 you're out one hour.
52:48 But what if you observe it from sunset to sunset?
52:51 Does that make any difference?
52:53 No. Doesn't matter what hour you call it because we keep
52:56 the day from sunset to sunset.
52:58 Daylight saving or not... makes no difference.
53:02 And I've often thought, you know, if I have
53:04 watched the sun set on Friday afternoon
53:07 and we welcome in God's Sabbath as it begins,
53:11 you know God's Sabbath comes in a blaze of glory...
53:15 the most beautiful colors.
53:18 You see some beautiful sunsets here in this place.
53:20 Beautiful sunsets over the water.
53:24 Comes in, in a blaze of glory
53:26 and then when the Sabbath goes out
53:28 Saturday night it goes out in a blaze of glory.
53:32 So you welcome it as a friend
53:34 and you say goodbye to it as a friend.
53:36 But what about the devil's day?
53:38 It comes in, in the blackness of midnight
53:41 and goes out in the blackness of midnight.
53:44 And you should know nothing about it because you should be
53:46 asleep at that time, isn't that right?
53:48 But with God's Sabbath you're able to welcome it as a friend.
53:53 And God has painted His most glorious colors
53:57 to tell us that the Sabbath is to begin.
54:03 And God's Sabbath is full of life from beginning to end
54:06 whereas the devil's is full of darkness
54:10 from beginning to end.
54:14 And it reminds me of that wonderful verse over here
54:16 in Revelation chapter 14 and verse 12.
54:20 Revelation chapter 14 and verse 12
54:23 where God is pointing out His people in the last days.
54:26 And this is what He says:
54:43 You see, there the characteristics of God's people
54:46 in the last days: that they'll be faithful to Jesus
54:49 and faithful to His commandments.
54:53 And I want to tell you, friend, I'm looking for a people
54:56 in these last days who are not only faithful to the
54:59 commandments but they're faithful to Jesus.
55:02 Because you cannot distinguish between the two
55:05 because the two go together.
55:07 They're like hand and glove,
55:09 husband and wife... they go together.
55:13 Because Jesus said: "If you love Me,
55:17 you'll keep My commandments. "
55:20 But this power... opposed to the law of God...
55:23 God predicted in Daniel that it was going to attempt to change
55:27 the law of God. Paul said that the characteristic
55:30 of this power would be lawlessness.
55:33 Opposed to the law of God.
55:35 And it would last right through until Jesus comes.
55:39 And today we live in a world in which lawlessness -
55:43 being opposed to the law of God -
55:45 is one of the primary teachings of the apostate church
55:50 and the apostate message.
55:52 And I want to tell you this, friends: that one of the easy
55:54 characteristics as you can work out those who are associated
55:57 with the antichrist is simply their attitude
56:00 to the law of God.
56:01 Because the Bible says that is the way that you can
56:05 distinguish error from truth.
56:07 And if you and I are looking for truth in these last days
56:10 we must look for a group who are upholding God's Ten Commandments
56:14 and upholding Jesus... because you can never keep the
56:17 commandments without Jesus.
56:19 But when you love Jesus in your heart,
56:21 you want to be faithful and to do what He's asked you to do.
56:24 Because when you fall in love with somebody
56:26 you want to do the things that that person likes,
56:29 isn't that right?
56:30 It's a natural response. You haven't got to force yourself.
56:33 Love has to live in action.
56:36 And that's the way it is in the Christian life.
56:39 When we fall in love with Jesus,
56:41 we want to do what He wants us to do.
56:43 And I trust today that God will firmly fix in our heart
56:49 a desire not to be part of that lawless teaching
56:53 bur rather to be faithful to Jesus
56:55 and faithful to His commandments in these last days.
56:59 Let's just bow our heads together in prayer.
57:01 Our wonderful Father in heaven,
57:03 I just want to thank you again today for Jesus
57:06 and I want to thank you for Your Word.
57:08 I want to thank you, Lord, for the commandments.
57:10 Not because we are saved by keeping the commandments.
57:12 God forbid that anyone would ever think that.
57:14 But rather the commandments reveal our attitude
57:18 the same as when we're in love with someone
57:20 our... what we do reveals our love or lack of it.
57:25 And so I pray, Lord, that You will help us
57:27 to be earnest. That You'll help us to understand
57:30 that when we love Jesus we want to keep His commandments.
57:34 So I pray that You'll bless us now as we go home
57:36 and that You'll bring us back again in our next program
57:38 as we begin to study the fatal mistake - the tragedy -
57:42 that has happened in the Christian church that has led
57:45 to so many tragic teachings.
57:47 I pray for Christ's sake, Amen.


Revised 2014-12-17