Series Code: FGW
Program Code: FGW000038A
00:26 Welcome to each and every one of you,
00:28 here at our 3ABN studios
00:30 and those who are watching around the world
00:33 or listening wherever you may be,
00:35 want to give you a very, very warm welcome
00:36 to this new six part series in time,
00:40 love and loyalty where we're going to unpack
00:43 six all important topics on how to prepare
00:46 for the soon return of Jesus.
00:49 The opening message I've entitled
00:51 "The Secret to Peace and Happiness."
00:53 I wanna begin by reflecting on a Time magazine front cover
00:57 from 50 years or so ago.
01:00 Back in 1966, April 8,
01:03 Time magazine put out a fascinating cover.
01:06 "Is God Dead?"
01:08 was the title in the midst of a time
01:10 when they were great changes
01:12 taking place in the world
01:13 and I find it fascinating now 50 years on almost exactly,
01:19 we have this front cover of Time magazine
01:22 that came out on April 3,
01:23 2017, "Is Truth Dead?"
01:26 so as we take a look at this title "Is Truth Dead?"
01:31 And the story was highlighting President Donald Trump
01:34 and his take on truth in this post truth world.
01:38 The question is being asked, can we know for certain
01:41 what is right and what is wrong?
01:43 Can we know what is true and what isn't true?
01:47 It's true today we live in a post truth world
01:50 where truth today is very much relative.
01:53 We live in what I like to call the age of Nike.
01:57 You know what Nike is famous for?
01:59 It's famous for its logo, just do it.
02:02 And we live in a day and age
02:04 where people are here for a good time
02:07 and not necessarily a long time.
02:08 I remember hearing of this website,
02:10 and I was very distressed by this website,
02:13 specifically targeting married men
02:16 and married women.
02:17 And the website was entitled,
02:22 "Have an Affair, Have an Affair."
02:25 Life is short, have an affair.
02:27 And that's the kind of world we are living in today.
02:30 Today we find ourselves in a world
02:31 where "Moral standards which ones were rock solid
02:35 are now non-existent."
02:37 And I wanna share with you what I consider to be
02:39 the downward spiral of morality based on these standards
02:43 that once were rock solid,
02:45 but are now almost non-existent.
02:46 Let me share this with you and you tell me
02:49 if you think that this is the way
02:51 things have been going.
02:53 The downward spiral of morality.
02:55 Firstly, immoral acts are abhorred,
03:00 then they are tolerated, then they are accepted,
03:04 then they are promoted
03:06 and finally immoral acts are defended.
03:09 This is the day and age that you and I are living in.
03:12 Once upon a time was considered very wrong,
03:16 today is considered just different
03:18 and a different way of doing things.
03:21 I remember hearing the first time
03:24 that Hollywood sent their cameras
03:26 into the bedroom to film
03:28 a husband and a wife sitting in bed together
03:31 with their pajamas.
03:33 There was an outcry,
03:35 how dare Hollywood take their cameras
03:37 into the sanctity of the bedroom
03:40 and film a couple in their bed together
03:43 in their pajamas.
03:46 Well, as Hollywood goes into more than just a bedroom
03:49 filled with individuals who have their pajamas on,
03:52 things have completely changed.
03:54 And so today we're living in a world
03:57 where the moral compass
04:01 has been thrown out the window,
04:04 and we find ourselves in a state of confusion.
04:07 Today ourselves, our society,
04:09 I would say has turned its back on God
04:13 and his moral standards.
04:15 This was a billboard
04:18 before the 2016 census
04:21 that took place here in Australia,
04:23 a national census and this was a billboard
04:25 that was advertising, "Not religious anymore?
04:30 Mark 'No religion' on the 2016 census."
04:35 There was a campaign to encourage
04:38 those who are no longer religious
04:41 to tick the not religious box which happened to be
04:44 at the top of the religious section
04:47 on our census in 2016.
04:50 I found it fascinating that
04:52 when the census results came through,
04:54 there was an article in the ABC News,
04:58 June 27, 2017 with this title.
05:02 "Census results, Australians are older,
05:05 ethnically diverse, and losing their religion."
05:09 Well, I wasn't too surprised about the ethnic diversity
05:12 here in Australia,
05:14 and I certainly wasn't surprised
05:15 that Australians are getting older.
05:17 I think most western countries are experiencing this.
05:21 But it was quite interesting to notice that
05:23 according to the census data
05:25 that we are losing our religion,
05:28 and this was a graph in that particular article
05:31 and I want to share it with you.
05:33 Notice here, this is a graph taking us back
05:35 from 1966 to 2016, so a 50 year period.
05:40 Incidentally, that were the two Time magazines
05:43 that we looked at earlier on, looking at this 50 year gap.
05:48 Christianity or those
05:50 who claimed to be Christians in 1966,
05:53 the numbers were around 90%.
05:56 By 2016, those numbers had gone down to 50%.
06:01 So a 40% drop in 50 years
06:04 of those who claim to be Christian,
06:06 whereas those who claimed no religion,
06:09 that number went from almost 0%,
06:12 maybe 1 or 2%, all the way up to 30%.
06:16 And so today, that's the day and age
06:18 that you and I are living in.
06:20 We are living in a day and age
06:22 where people no longer are affiliated
06:25 with a particular faith or religion,
06:28 where people do not necessarily have
06:30 religious views and convictions and morals
06:34 that they run their lives by.
06:36 Arnold Toynbee, he was a historian,
06:40 a very famous historian,
06:41 he's passed away a number of years ago,
06:44 but he was a famous historian,
06:45 and he is famous for this epic series
06:49 on world history entitled,
06:52 "A Study of History,
06:54 Why Do They Disintegrate and Collapse?"
06:57 Before we take a look at
06:59 one of these major conclusions,
07:01 I just want to share with you
07:02 a little bit on this 12 volume study.
07:05 Arnold Toynbee looked at history,
07:09 he looked at 19 civilizations that have arisen to ascendancy,
07:14 but then they have fallen and completely become
07:18 crushed and obsolete.
07:20 And he took a look at these 19 civilizations
07:22 and he took a look from, from their development
07:25 all the way through to their decay
07:27 and he took a look at
07:28 what were some of the major factors.
07:30 A number of factors were listed.
07:32 And one of the primary reasons why these past civilizations,
07:37 some of them wonderful, great civilization,
07:39 including the Roman Empire not only decay,
07:45 but were eventually destroyed was through this
07:48 and these are his own words,
07:50 "Lawlessness leads to destruction."
07:53 These are the words of Arnold Toynbee
07:55 who studied these world historical empires
08:01 over a long period of time,
08:03 and he wrote this 12 volume series.
08:06 Jesus, in fact, shared the same thing with us
08:08 2000 years ago.
08:10 Well, before Arnold Toynbee came on to the scene,
08:13 these are the words of Jesus in Matthew Chapter 24.
08:16 Matthew 24 is a passage
08:18 where Jesus outlines the history of the world
08:22 from His day all the way
08:24 through to the end of time,
08:25 including the history of the Jewish nation
08:28 from His day all the way through
08:30 to the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.
08:33 Notice what Jesus had to say in Matthew 24:12,
08:37 "And because lawlessness will abound,"
08:40 notice the next words,
08:42 notice the result when lawlessness abounds,
08:48 the love of many will do," what?
08:50 Will grow cold,
08:52 "The love of many will grow cold."
08:54 So when there is lawlessness,
08:56 the natural progression is that
08:59 the love of many grows cold.
09:03 Now, what kind of love was Jesus here referring to?
09:07 The Greeks had four main words for the word love,
09:11 and I'll have them up here on the screen for you.
09:14 The first one is Phileo,
09:16 which is love between close friends.
09:18 The second one is Storge, love between family members.
09:23 Then you have the word Eros,
09:26 we get the word erotic in English
09:28 from that and that is sensual or romantic love.
09:31 And then finally we have the word Agape,
09:34 the fourth Greek word
09:36 and that is referring to God's love,
09:39 God's immeasurable,
09:40 incomparable love for humankind.
09:43 Agape love is perfect, unconditional, sacrificial,
09:46 and pure love.
09:47 This is the love that Jesus was speaking of.
09:51 When Jesus said,
09:52 "The love of many will grow cold
09:55 when lawlessness abounds."
09:56 What Jesus was saying is that the natural consequence, sadly,
10:02 of lawlessness will be that genuine love,
10:06 that Agape love.
10:07 That's the word there that is used,
10:09 that Agape love, that unconditional love
10:13 between God and humanity,
10:16 between humans that will grow cold
10:20 when God's law,
10:22 when God law goes out the window.
10:25 So let's take a look at what I consider to be exhibit A
10:30 of that unconditional love here amongst society.
10:36 This is a picture here of my grandparents.
10:40 Here they are, my grandparents.
10:42 This picture here on your left
10:44 is taken a few years ago when they were celebrating
10:48 their 483rd birthday together.
10:51 That's not a bad innings, is it?
10:54 Not quite, granddad, he's 83,
10:58 grandma, she's 84.
11:00 So we put it all together and yeah,
11:02 we had a big celebration for them,
11:04 their birthdays are 10 days apart in June.
11:07 And so we had a wonderful celebration.
11:09 That picture there on your right
11:11 was taken three years ago,
11:13 when they celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary.
11:17 Can you believe being married
11:19 to the same person for 70 years?
11:21 That's quite amazing, isn't it?
11:22 Some people don't even live to 70,
11:25 let alone are married for 70 years.
11:28 I mean, they were married at an early age.
11:31 Granddad was 17 and grandma was 18
11:34 when they got married there in a village in Macedonia
11:39 and as far as they're concerned,
11:41 their love was to remain until the day they died.
11:45 They were true to their commitment,
11:47 they were true to one another
11:50 and they've been through some difficult times,
11:52 many challenging times.
11:54 But through them all, they made a decision
11:56 that they were going to stick it out,
11:57 they were going to encourage one another
11:59 and help one another.
12:00 That is that love.
12:02 That is that genuine love.
12:03 Sadly, there isn't that much of that today.
12:06 And I don't need to remind you of the sadness
12:09 and the heartache that many families today
12:12 are experiencing.
12:13 Many couples are experiencing, many children are experiencing
12:16 due to the love of many growing cold.
12:18 Here is a picture of our entire family.
12:22 We got together and we had a wonderful time.
12:25 Celebration is almost,
12:29 well there's over 40 members of the family now.
12:32 Grandma and granddad had five children
12:34 and 11 grandchildren.
12:36 And then they had 13 great granddaughters
12:39 in a row waiting for their first great
12:42 grandson who finally arrived, number 14,
12:45 and there's another one on the way
12:47 and two more twin great granddaughters coming up
12:51 before the end of the year.
12:53 So they'll have 17 great grandchildren.
12:56 And I mean it's wonderful to hang out
12:57 with my grandparents.
12:59 I love spending time with them because when I am with them,
13:03 they show me just the way they live,
13:05 the way they interact with one another.
13:08 They show me what true love is
13:10 and they've been married for so long.
13:12 I remember one time
13:13 I'll just tell you this funny story.
13:15 One time I asked my grandma,
13:18 I said, "What's the secret?
13:19 What's the secret to being married for so long,
13:22 70 years?"
13:23 And she looked at me and with a smile,
13:25 she said, "Oh, my son."
13:27 She said, "You know,
13:29 your grandfather's pretty much deaf."
13:32 And I said, "Yes, I know."
13:33 So that's part of the secret, that's part of a secret.
13:39 So what's it like as we ask this
13:42 all important next question?
13:45 What is the God given recipe for peace,
13:48 love and true happiness?
13:49 That's what we wanna find out in this presentation today
13:54 and we're going to pause and we're gonna ask God,
13:56 the God of the Bible to bless our time together
13:58 as we seek to understand what His plans
14:00 and His purposes are for discovering
14:03 how we can have peace and happiness in our lives,
14:06 which is what everyone is seeking for.
14:08 So let's just pause and pray for a moment.
14:10 Father in heaven, we want to thank You so much
14:12 for Your Word.
14:13 We recognize that we're living in a world
14:15 where things are falling apart,
14:18 things are crumbling all around us.
14:20 Those most important and precious relationships
14:24 are just falling apart and we need something
14:27 to hold us together.
14:29 We need something to hold our communities,
14:31 our families together.
14:32 And so we are asking and praying that
14:35 as we open Your Word today, that you'll speak to us
14:39 words of wisdom, words of grace,
14:41 words of truth,
14:43 for You have promised in Your Word
14:44 that Your Word is truth.
14:46 So bless us we pray in Jesus' name,
14:49 amen and amen.
14:51 Well, I want to begin by going to the Book of Revelation
14:53 as we unpack what scripture has to say
14:56 regarding God's perfect plan for peace and happiness.
15:00 The Book of Revelation
15:01 has what is called the three angels' messages,
15:06 these three angels' messages,
15:09 God's final message of love to the world
15:12 needs to go to the entire world
15:14 and when these three
15:16 all important messages are shared
15:18 with the entire world,
15:19 then the Bible says in Revelation Chapter 14,
15:21 Jesus will come.
15:23 So these three angels' messages prepare the entire world
15:27 for the second coming of Jesus,
15:28 and notice how
15:29 the first angel's message begins.
15:32 John writes, "Then I saw another angel
15:35 flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel
15:38 to preach to those who dwell on the earth,
15:40 to every nation, tribe, tongue and people."
15:43 Notice, this message is the everlasting gospel.
15:47 Jesus in Matthew 24:14, He told us,
15:50 "And this gospel of the kingdom will go
15:52 to all the world as a witness to all the nations,"
15:55 and what will happen then?
15:57 The end will come.
15:58 So this is the gospel that Jesus said,
16:01 must go to the whole world
16:03 before He returns in an end time context.
16:07 And notice how the first angel
16:09 begins sharing the everlasting gospel,
16:13 the everlasting good news about God and His love,
16:16 and His willingness to save all of humanity,
16:20 that all be saved and none perish.
16:22 Notice the first words of the the angel
16:26 as he shares this message
16:27 that needs to go to the whole world.
16:29 In Revelation 14:7, we read, "Saying with a loud voice..."
16:34 Those words they are loud voice in the original.
16:37 In other words, megaphone, this is a megaphone voice,
16:40 this is not a whisper.
16:42 This is a message that needs to be proclaimed
16:46 in a loud voice to the whole world.
16:48 "Fear God and give glory to Him,
16:51 for the hour of His judgment has come,
16:53 and worship Him who made heaven and earth,
16:55 the sea and the springs of water."
16:57 Notice those first two words, fear God, fear God.
17:01 Now, when it comes to fearing God,
17:05 does this mean that we ought to be afraid of God?
17:07 Is God someone to be afraid of?
17:10 The last time I checked my Bible,
17:12 Jesus came, and He said, "I'm a friend of sinners."
17:15 Jesus came, and He was welcomed by the people
17:19 that He came to save,
17:22 those that were focused
17:24 on having a relationship with Him.
17:26 God is not someone to be afraid of.
17:28 God is someone to be a friend of.
17:30 So what does the Bible mean when it says, fear God?
17:34 Well, let's unpack what these words mean.
17:37 In other parts of the Bible, we have a definition
17:41 and we have some, some more clarification
17:44 on what it means to be fear God.
17:46 Notice these words
17:48 that we find in Deuteronomy 10:12-13.
17:52 "What does the Lord your God require of you,"
17:54 but to do what?
17:56 "To fear the Lord your God,"
17:58 there are those words again repeated,
18:00 "TO walk in all his ways, and to love Him,
18:03 to serve the Lord your God with all your heart
18:06 and with all your soul,
18:07 and to keep the commandments of the Lord
18:09 and His statutes
18:10 which I command you for your good?"
18:13 This is a beautiful passage and a beautiful definition of
18:16 what it means to fear God.
18:18 To fear the Lord, it means to love Him,
18:21 it means to serve Him with all of your heart.
18:24 It means to keep His commandments,
18:27 and His statutes
18:29 which ultimately are for your good
18:31 and my good always.
18:34 That's what it means to fear God.
18:35 It means to honor Him, to Reverence him,
18:38 and to do that which He has invited us to do
18:41 which is for our good.
18:44 In Deuteronomy 6:24, we read these words,
18:47 "The Lord commanded us to observe all these statutes
18:51 to fear the Lord," there are those words again,
18:53 "to fear the Lord our God for our good,"
18:55 how often?
18:59 "For our good always."
19:01 When you and I drive on the road,
19:04 as we drove to this venue here today,
19:08 we came across various traffic signals,
19:12 isn't that right?
19:13 Along the way, we came across stop signs,
19:15 give way signs, traffic lights, whatever the case may be,
19:21 why are they there?
19:22 They are there to protect us.
19:24 Isn't that right?
19:25 That's what the laws on the road are there for,
19:28 they are there to protect us so that we can safely navigate
19:32 from home to wherever our destination may be.
19:36 Today, we have also laws and we always have had laws
19:40 in physics and in science.
19:43 There are laws that govern the solar system
19:46 and our universe.
19:47 There are laws of health.
19:50 If you and I,
19:51 if you and I respect the laws of health,
19:53 we are more likely to live a happy
19:56 and a healthy life, isn't that right?
19:58 Than if we disrespect the laws of health.
20:02 Then there are laws when it comes to happy families
20:05 and happy marriages.
20:07 Then there are also laws when it comes to finances.
20:10 So whichever way we look,
20:13 we discover that laws are put in place
20:17 in order to bring us happiness,
20:19 in order to bring us peace, in order to bring us joy,
20:22 in order to bring us satisfaction,
20:26 in order that you and I
20:27 may enjoy a holistic life.
20:30 That is the reason why we have laws
20:33 and the reason why God has given us His laws.
20:36 The reason why He has given us His Word
20:38 is for that same reason, for our good always.
20:41 Notice some more scriptures.
20:44 In Proverbs 29:18, we read these words,
20:48 "Happy is he who keeps the law."
20:51 Here is another passage from Psalm 119:165,
20:56 "Great peace have those who love your law,
20:59 and nothing causes them to stumble."
21:01 So God's plan is for us to have peace,
21:04 for us to have happiness.
21:05 Here is another, in John 15:10, the words of Jesus,
21:10 "If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love,
21:14 just as I have kept my Father's commandments
21:16 and abide in His love."
21:18 Notice, by keeping the commandments of God,
21:23 just as Jesus kept His Father's commandments,
21:25 we abide in the love of Christ,
21:29 we are one with Christ.
21:32 Love is the very foundation of God's government.
21:37 The Bible tells us in 1 John 4:8,
21:41 "That God is love."
21:44 Not that God loves, but that God is love.
21:48 The very essence of God is love.
21:52 The most powerful force in the universe
21:56 is the love of God.
21:57 It's more powerful than any other substance
22:01 in the universe, the greatest force,
22:03 the greatest power is God's love.
22:07 Let me share with you something regarding God's love
22:11 and God's law.
22:13 Notice, up here on the screen, we have scriptures
22:17 that describe God and who He is,
22:21 and God's law and what it is.
22:24 And you'll discover the incredible,
22:26 the incredible parallels and similarities
22:29 between God and His law.
22:31 The Bible says God is love.
22:33 The Bible says His law is love.
22:36 The Bible says God is good.
22:38 The Bible says God's law is good.
22:40 And there are those scriptures that you can look up.
22:42 God is holy and perfect, and pure and just
22:47 and so is His law.
22:49 God is true and spiritual, and righteous,
22:52 faithful and unchangeable, eternal, and so is God's law.
22:57 So whatever God is, His law is.
23:00 In other words,
23:02 God's law is a transcript
23:05 of His character.
23:09 God's character is His law.
23:12 It's who He is.
23:14 And in fact, we ought not be surprised,
23:17 because the constitution,
23:20 the laws that govern a particular country
23:24 will determine
23:25 whether that country is a place worth living in or not,
23:28 isn't that right?
23:29 There are people around the world
23:32 that risk life and limb
23:34 including many that have tried desperately
23:38 to make the trek from their homeland
23:41 across the waters to Australia.
23:43 We call them boat people here in Australia,
23:46 or refugees in other parts of the world.
23:48 They risk life and limb to leave their homes
23:52 where there is war, where there is lawlessness,
23:56 where there is oppression, where there is religious
23:58 and political persecution in order to go to a country
24:03 where they can have pace, where there are laws,
24:08 where there is a freedom to worship,
24:12 and freedom to have political rights
24:14 and so on and so forth.
24:16 So today, we live in a country that is blessed
24:20 because of our laws because of our constitution.
24:22 And so the commandments of God are the constitution of heaven.
24:27 We will discover the constitution
24:29 of the very universe.
24:31 Now let's take a look, a closer look at this idea
24:36 the Bible shares that God is love.
24:40 On one particular occasion,
24:42 we discover in Matthew 22:36-40,
24:46 a religious lawyer, an expert in the law of Moses,
24:50 in particular, the Ten Commandments,
24:53 he came to Jesus on one occasion,
24:55 and this is what Matthew records,
24:58 "Teacher is what he asked,
25:01 which is the great commandment in the law,"
25:03 and he's speaking of the Ten Commandments
25:05 in particular.
25:06 "And Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the Lord
25:08 your God with all your heart, with all your soul,
25:11 and with all your mind.'
25:12 This is the first and great commandment.
25:14 And the second is like it,
25:16 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'
25:19 On these two commandments hang all the law
25:23 and the prophets.'"
25:24 This is a very powerful scripture.
25:26 Here, Jesus summarized the entirety
25:31 of not only who He is,
25:34 not only what His aim is for humanity,
25:37 but what God's plan is for the entire world
25:42 in order for there to be peace,
25:44 happiness, joy, and security.
25:47 Let's unpack this.
25:50 Firstly, the Bible tells us that God is love.
25:54 That's what the Bible says, God is love.
25:55 1 John 4:8, Jesus said,
25:58 "You show the love of God
26:00 by showing love towards God,
26:02 love the Lord your God with all your heart,
26:04 and love your neighbor as yourself."
26:06 Love towards God,
26:07 love towards your fellow human being.
26:10 Well, how do we show love towards God?
26:12 We show love towards God
26:14 by keeping those first four commandments.
26:16 How do we show love towards one another?
26:19 By keeping the next six commandments
26:21 which pertain to our relationship
26:23 with one another.
26:24 Well, what did Jesus say on these two hang all the what?
26:28 All the law and the prophets.
26:31 Now what are all the law and the prophets?
26:33 That's the entirety of Scripture.
26:35 That's another way of saying, the whole Bible.
26:38 So the whole Bible is summed up in
26:43 love the Lord your God with all your heart,
26:46 and love your neighbor as yourself,
26:49 which shared in more detail in those first four,
26:54 and in the last six commandments
26:55 on those two tablets of stone.
26:58 So can you see this entirety of God's law?
27:01 This is the very foundation of not only the universe,
27:06 but this is the very foundation for happiness,
27:09 peace and security.
27:12 As we continue, we discover that God gave us
27:17 the Ten Commandments,
27:18 and He wrote them on two tablets of stone,
27:22 and He wrote them with His very own finger,
27:26 and He placed them in the ark,
27:30 the Ark of the Covenant.
27:33 This was to be placed in the most holy place.
27:37 It was placed in the most holy place
27:39 there in the sanctuary,
27:41 and the Ark of the Covenant
27:43 represented the very throne room of heaven.
27:47 We have these two angels that represent the two cherubim
27:52 that are there by the throne of God
27:54 and they are there
27:58 kneeling in this artist's depiction
28:02 on what is the mercy seat,
28:04 the lid of the Ark of the Covenant,
28:05 which is the mercy seat,
28:07 and inside the Ark of the Covenant,
28:10 we have the Ten Commandments.
28:12 We have these two tablets of stone
28:15 that God Himself wrote with His very own finger.
28:20 That's significant,
28:21 the Ten Commandments are that significant
28:23 that God wrote with His very own finger.
28:26 They call commandments for a reason.
28:28 They're not the 10 good ideas.
28:30 They're not the 10 recommendations.
28:32 They're not the 10 suggestions, they are the Ten Commandments.
28:36 That is because they are extremely important
28:38 and there is no other place in Scripture
28:44 where God with His very own hand writes
28:48 on tablets of stone
28:50 instructions for the human race.
28:52 And why do we write things on stone?
28:55 That's because we want that to remain forever,
28:57 isn't that right?
28:58 I have been to the Middle East on two occasions,
29:01 and there are inscriptions from thousands of years ago
29:06 that are still to this day,
29:10 and these inscriptions
29:12 give the history and messages from the past,
29:15 because they were to be remembered
29:18 and to remain for a long time.
29:22 Now there is huge significance to these Ten Commandments.
29:26 There was a time
29:28 when I used to believe and think that
29:31 when God wrote on those Ten Commandments,
29:34 He wrote on two tablets of stone
29:37 from Mount Sinai that Moses handed to God.
29:42 And He wrote on those two tablets of stone,
29:45 and then passed them back to Moses.
29:48 In fact, a few years ago, when I had the opportunity
29:51 of going to what is called a traditional Mount Sinai,
29:56 the place there in Egypt on the Sinai Peninsula,
29:59 place called St. Catherine's, I picked up a stone.
30:03 This is from the traditional mountain
30:06 where many believe,
30:09 we're not sure, the mountain and where it exactly is
30:13 that Moses received the Ten Commandments,
30:15 but I picked up a stone and I used to think that
30:19 the Ten Commandments were placed on stone
30:23 similar to this.
30:26 Until one day I discovered
30:28 where the original Ten Commandments
30:31 in fact came from.
30:33 Let me share with you something
30:34 absolutely incredible.
30:37 Let's go to the Book of Exodus, Exodus, 24:9.
30:41 Exodus 24:9 and notice these words,
30:44 "Then Moses went up,"
30:47 this is God inviting Moses to go up to the mountain,
30:50 to receive the Ten Commandments.
30:52 And he went up also Aaron, Nadab and Abihu,
30:55 and seventy of the elders of Israel,
31:00 and they saw the God of Israel.
31:02 And there was under His feet
31:04 as it were a paved work of sapphire stone,
31:08 and it was like the very heavens
31:10 in its clarity."
31:12 So here, what the Bible is describing
31:15 is this sapphire stone that Moses
31:20 and those that were with him saw,
31:23 and they say that it was as clear
31:25 as the heavens.
31:27 Now what color is the heaven?
31:29 When you look up when there are no clouds?
31:31 What color is it?
31:32 Blue, and there's plenty of blue sky today,
31:34 when I left home, it was all blue sky,
31:36 not a cloud in the sky.
31:39 And we know that blue is a significant color
31:42 when it comes to sapphire stone,
31:44 it's one of the most treasured,
31:46 one of the most expensive sapphire stones is blue,
31:49 the color of royalty.
31:51 Well, let's continue on and let's take a look at
31:54 what Ezekiel has to say,
31:56 as we put a couple more pieces together.
31:58 Ezekiel says and he is also in vision,
32:01 well, he is in vision and he says,
32:02 "And there in the firmament
32:04 that was above the head of the cherubim,"
32:06 is speaking of God's throne,
32:08 "there appeared something like a sapphire stone,"
32:11 there are those words again,
32:13 "having the appearance of the likeness of a throne.
32:17 So here Ezekiel sees this sapphire stone
32:23 in the heavens that appears like a throne.
32:27 Very interesting.
32:28 Now let's go back to Exodus
32:31 as we pick up the rest of the story,
32:33 Exodus 24:12.
32:35 "Then the Lord said to Moses,
32:37 'Come up to Me on the mountain and be there,
32:40 and I will give you tablets of,"
32:43 and I've included the word the because the word the
32:45 is in the original,
32:47 it's not in the New King James Version,
32:49 or the King James Version.
32:50 But I looked at the New Living Translation,
32:52 and guess what?
32:53 It was there, they've included that word the
32:55 which is in the original Hebrew.
32:57 "The stone and the law and commanded
33:00 which I have written, that you may teach them."
33:02 Now what so significant about the?
33:06 What's significant about the is that,
33:09 that the is in reference to the stone
33:13 that Moses has seen and that stone
33:17 is that sapphire stone as clear as the what?
33:22 As clear as the heavens, that blue sapphire stone.
33:25 So this was news to me, and this was huge
33:29 and absolutely huge spiritual insight
33:33 that I received that God,
33:35 those very first commandments
33:38 God wrote on tablets of stone
33:41 from His very throne room,
33:45 blue sapphire throne room,
33:48 God chiseled out of his very throne room,
33:51 two tablets of sapphire stone, blue sapphire stone,
33:56 He wrote His law of love on them,
33:59 and He passed them down to Moses.
34:04 Isn't that incredible?
34:07 That is so incredible, absolutely amazing.
34:10 Let me share with you a scripture from Hebrews 1:8,
34:15 "Your throne, O God," is what?
34:18 "Forever and ever."
34:20 This tells us that God's law is to remain forever and ever.
34:24 And here's another scripture, Luke 16:17.
34:28 "And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away,
34:30 said Jesus,
34:31 than for one tittle of the law to fail."
34:35 This is the eternal law of God and David in Psalm,
34:40 he shares that
34:42 all of God's commandments are sure,
34:44 they last forever and ever.
34:48 In Numbers Chapter 15, Moses gave directions
34:52 based on God's Word of what the children of Israel
34:55 were to sew on the tassels of their garments,
34:58 okay, on their clothing that they wore each day.
35:00 Notice these words in Numbers 15:37-41.
35:06 "Again the Lord spoke to Moses saying,
35:08 "Speak to the children of Israel,
35:10 Tell them to make tassels
35:11 on the corners of their garments
35:13 throughout their generations,
35:15 and to put a blue thread, notice the color,
35:18 a blue thread in the tassels of the corners."
35:21 Let's continue.
35:23 "And you shall have the tassel,
35:25 that you may look upon it and remember
35:27 all the commandments of the Lord
35:29 and do them, and that you may not follow the harlotry
35:32 to which your own heart and your own eyes are inclined,
35:36 and that you may remember and do all My commandments,
35:38 and be holy for your God.
35:40 I am the Lord your God,
35:42 who brought you out of the land of Egypt,
35:44 to be your God, I am the Lord your God.'"
35:47 So what were the children of Israel to do?
35:49 They were to sew blue thread
35:52 on the tassels of their garments.
35:55 So as they walked, wherever they walked,
35:58 they would remember the law of God,
36:00 that law of love that was to be a blessing,
36:04 that law of love that was to offer them peace,
36:06 and happiness and to be for their good always.
36:09 When the children of Israel walked out of their tents
36:12 in the morning,
36:13 and they looked up into the heavens,
36:15 and they could just see the beautiful blue heavens
36:19 that were to be reminded of God's law of love,
36:23 that law of love of protection,
36:26 that law of love that provides blessings,
36:28 that law of love that provides for everything
36:33 that is to be for their good always,
36:36 and I want to thank God and praise Him
36:38 that they are encircled, encircled by the law,
36:42 which is the character, which is the love of God,
36:49 encircled by the love of God each and every day.
36:55 That's what God's law is all about.
36:57 It tells us that we have a solid foundation.
37:00 It tells us that
37:01 we come from a God who loves us.
37:03 We come from a God who has given us instructions
37:07 on how we can enjoy the best possible life
37:10 in the here and now
37:11 and be part of His everlasting kingdom of love,
37:14 where His love will reign
37:16 supreme forevermore.
37:21 Lawlessness leads to what, said Toynbee?
37:27 God's law leads to love,
37:31 prosperity, joy, happiness,
37:34 peace, and the list goes on.
37:40 Sadly, the children of Israel
37:44 did not follow God's law of love,
37:46 they turned their back on His law of love,
37:50 they turned away from the Lord
37:52 and sadly they were taken into captivity.
37:55 The northern tribes or the northern part of Israel,
37:58 the 10 northern tribes
38:00 were taken into captivity in 722 BC,
38:04 followed by the southern tribes Judah and Benjamin,
38:08 they were taken into captivity by the Babylonians,
38:11 the northern tribes by the Assyrians,
38:14 and the Babylonians overthrew Jerusalem
38:16 and destroyed the temple in 586 BC.
38:20 These words are very sad
38:23 that Isaiah pinned in relation to God's people
38:28 walking away from His law of love.
38:30 We read in Isaiah 48:18, "Oh, this is God.
38:35 This is God crying for His people,
38:37 weeping over His people."
38:39 And these are the words of God,"
38:40 Oh, that you had heeded My commandments!
38:43 Then your peace would have been like a river,
38:46 and your righteousness like the waves of the sea."
38:50 The reality of why we have so much pain
38:54 and suffering today
38:55 is because we have walked away from God's law of love.
38:59 That's the reason why
39:00 we have so much pain and suffering in this world.
39:02 That is the reason why there is so much pain
39:04 and heartache in families.
39:07 That is the reason why there is just so much
39:11 of that which is not God's plan for us,
39:13 because we have walked away from God's law of love.
39:17 Therefore, today, God is calling the world back
39:21 to the Ten Commandments.
39:27 the Ten Commandments define and protect
39:30 our most precious relationships.
39:32 Notice, the first four commandments
39:35 protect our relationship with God.
39:39 And the next six,
39:41 the last six protect our relationships
39:43 with one another.
39:45 You see God's commandments
39:46 are all about protecting relationships,
39:50 our relationship with God
39:52 and our relationship with one another.
39:54 And I don't know about you, but for me
39:57 the most important thing in life
39:59 is relationships.
40:01 That's more important than my home
40:03 that the bank owns anyway.
40:04 That's more important than my car.
40:07 That's more important than anything else I have.
40:10 My relationship with my wife,
40:12 my relationship with my daughters,
40:14 my relationship with my parents,
40:16 my relationship with my other family members,
40:18 my relationship with my neighbors,
40:20 with my friends, with my church family,
40:22 my relationships with people in general,
40:25 that is what matters most.
40:27 And the Ten Commandments have been given by God
40:32 to protect and affirm
40:36 and prosper
40:39 the most important thing in life
40:41 and that is relationship between God and you
40:46 and between you and your fellow man.
40:50 I wanna share with you an interesting point
40:53 regarding the way the Ten Commandments
40:56 have been set out.
40:58 If you take a look at the first four,
41:00 the first four commandments take a look at
41:03 and focus in on our relationship with God.
41:06 The next commandment,
41:08 commandment number five focuses on the relationship
41:12 between the immediate family members,
41:16 mother, father,
41:17 and children, family, that's next.
41:20 Then we have the next four commandments,
41:24 commandments number 6, 7, 8 and 9,
41:26 they're focused on our relationship
41:28 with one another.
41:30 And then finally, commandment number 10
41:32 is dealing with our attitude toward our possessions.
41:36 Okay, this is the order that God has given the commandments
41:39 from top to bottom.
41:41 God, family, others, possessions that order
41:45 and notice when we are following God's order,
41:49 which way are we heading?
41:51 We're heading up? Can you see the arrow?
41:54 Yes or no. Who can see the arrow?
41:58 The arrow, it's pointing up.
42:00 Society is moving up.
42:03 You see, our societies
42:04 are only as strong as their families.
42:09 The family unit is the very basic
42:12 and the foundational framework for a happy
42:16 and a prosperous society.
42:17 As goes the family, so goes society.
42:21 Sadly, we have turned our back on God,
42:23 and sadly we are turning our back on family.
42:26 But notice how the enemy
42:27 has turned God's Ten Commandments
42:29 and God's priority list upside down.
42:33 We have possessions on top for many people,
42:37 isn't that right?
42:39 People are willing to sacrifice health, family,
42:43 whatever the case may be in order to prosper
42:47 in their careers or finances or whatever the case may be.
42:51 And then others,
42:53 others with the time that's available.
42:56 Family, well, who needs family?
42:57 Who needs to worry about grandparents?
42:59 I mean, why worry about grandparents,
43:02 just stick them in some nursing home and...
43:05 I mean, what use of grandparents
43:07 got to anyone today?
43:10 That's how a lot of people think,
43:12 and I'm speaking from people that I know.
43:15 Then there is family.
43:20 Well, we talked about that and then finally God.
43:23 What's the point of God in your life?
43:25 We don't need God today.
43:26 Why do we need God, we've got everything.
43:29 And as you can say the arrow is heading south
43:32 when our priorities get tipped upside down
43:36 as individuals and as a society,
43:38 we head down.
43:40 The Ten Commandments are God's standard
43:44 in the judgment.
43:46 Notice what we read in Ecclesiastes 12:13-14.
43:51 Solomon at the end of his will and testimony
43:55 in the Book of Ecclesiastes,
43:56 he sums up what is most important,
43:59 and he shares these words,
44:00 "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter, Fear God,"
44:03 there are those words again,
44:05 from the Book of Revelation 14:7,
44:08 that we looked at earlier,
44:10 "Fear God and keep His commandments,
44:12 for this is man's all.
44:13 For God will bring every work into judgment,
44:15 including every secret thing whether good or evil."
44:19 So what matters most is to put God first,
44:22 to put His law of love first and foremost in your life
44:25 and then you will prosper in harmony with God's plan
44:29 and God's will for your life.
44:31 Well, the question needs to be asked,
44:33 can I be saved by keeping God's law?
44:37 That's a good question.
44:39 Let's find out what the Bible says.
44:41 We read in Ephesians 2:8-9, the Apostle Paul writes,
44:45 "For by grace you have been saved through faith,
44:48 and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God,
44:51 not of works, lest anyone should boast."
44:55 So we cannot be saved by keeping God's law.
44:59 God's law is not designed to save anyone.
45:03 We are saved as the Apostle Paul writes
45:06 so succinctly and so clearly,
45:09 we are saved by God's grace through faith,
45:14 not of ourselves, it is the gift of God,
45:17 God's grace alone saves us.
45:22 So the question is,
45:24 what is the main purpose of God's Ten Commandments?
45:28 If we cannot be saved by keeping God's law,
45:31 then why bother?
45:32 And what's the purpose?
45:34 Well, let me share with you what the Book of James shares
45:37 regarding what the main purpose is for God's law.
45:41 The main purpose for God's law is
45:44 to point us to our great need,
45:47 just as a mirror.
45:50 A mirror points out the mark,
45:54 the dirt in someone's face,
45:57 so too God's law is like a mirror.
46:00 I didn't come up with that,
46:01 you can read about that in James.
46:03 James talks about God's law as a mirror.
46:07 It's there to help us understand what we look like,
46:10 what our condition is, that's why you go to a mirror,
46:12 isn't that right?
46:14 You go to the mirror,
46:15 especially if you need to go to the mirror.
46:19 I was about to say something,
46:21 and I know I would have got in trouble
46:22 so I just as well that I contain myself.
46:26 You go to the mirror to discover what you look like
46:31 and what needs to be addressed.
46:32 Isn't that right? That's the purpose of a mirror.
46:35 A mirror doesn't clean you.
46:37 A mirror just simply states the obvious and shares with you
46:41 what your condition is and then you,
46:44 you take that water,
46:45 and you take the soap and that's how you get cleaned.
46:50 That's how you get cleaned.
46:52 In the same way, God's law is there to tell us
46:57 that we need Jesus, that we desperately need Him,
47:01 we need His precious blood to clean us,
47:03 to cleanse us from all of our sins,
47:05 we need His robe of righteousness,
47:07 that towel to clothe us.
47:11 We need Jesus to take away that dirt,
47:13 that sin that only He can take.
47:16 And so God's law, and without God's law,
47:20 we would not know our true condition.
47:23 Without the law, there would be no sin
47:25 'cause the Bible very clearly says
47:28 that without the law, there is no sin,
47:30 and we'll look at that scripture
47:31 in just a moment.
47:32 And without sin,
47:34 there would be no need for a savior.
47:36 I wanna to go to this next scripture,
47:38 and then I want to unpack that just a little more.
47:40 In Romans 3:20, the Apostle Paul says,
47:43 "Therefore by the deeds of the law
47:45 no flesh will be justified in His sight,
47:47 for by the law is the knowledge of sin."
47:51 God's law helps us to know
47:54 what is right and what is wrong.
47:56 God's law enables us to understand what is sin
48:00 and what is righteousness.
48:02 God's law is there designed
48:05 to point us to Jesus.
48:08 God's law is that mirror and it points us to Jesus,
48:11 who cleanses us from sin, and then helps us to know
48:15 how we ought to live our life in harmony with God's will,
48:20 in harmony with God's plans for our lives,
48:22 because God ultimately wants us to prosper.
48:25 He ultimately wants us to be successful.
48:28 He ultimately wants us to be in good health.
48:30 He wants us to be happy.
48:32 That is God's ultimate plan.
48:34 So the law of God says to point us to Christ.
48:37 And if we did not have the law of God,
48:41 we would not realize that we are sinners.
48:44 And we would not realize
48:46 that we need a sin pardoning savior.
48:48 And we would have no idea and we would not realize
48:51 that we need Jesus.
48:53 The law is absolutely essential.
48:55 Without the law,
48:56 there ultimately is no need for a savior.
48:59 And so that is
49:01 the absolute foundational importance of God's law.
49:09 "For those who love God,
49:12 keeping His commandments is not a burden,
49:14 but a blessing."
49:16 Notice what we read,
49:17 in 1 John 5:2-3,
49:21 "By this, writes John,
49:24 we know that we love the children of God,
49:26 when we love God and keep His commandments.
49:30 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments,
49:33 and His commandments are not burdensome."
49:36 When you love someone,
49:39 when you love someone,
49:42 you honor them, you're loyal to them.
49:47 You're even willing to fulfill the vows
49:50 you have made to that special someone
49:53 not because you have to, not because it's a burden,
49:56 but because you love them, isn't that right?
49:58 You count it a blessing, you count it a joy,
50:01 because you're in love with that person.
50:04 And so those who honor God,
50:07 those who keep His commandments,
50:09 they do it not as a burden,
50:11 not as a requirement, but they do it out of love,
50:15 out of loyalty and the greatest,
50:19 the absolute greatest sign of loyalty
50:25 and love is obedience.
50:27 That's the greatest sign.
50:29 And that's why two people, when they get married,
50:32 they will exchange vows and those wedding vows
50:37 declared before one another
50:39 declared before many witnesses are precious
50:44 because those wedding vows
50:46 are signs of loyalty and commitment,
50:49 and genuine love for one another
50:51 that is lived out through actions
50:54 and not just
50:58 talk, talk, talk.
50:59 Isn't that right?
51:01 What do they say? Actions speak louder than what?
51:06 And often you'll hear people say,
51:08 well, you know, put your money where you are,
51:12 where your mouth is, exactly right.
51:14 So we know that actions speak louder than words.
51:19 Where does God want to place His law of love?
51:23 Notice what we read in the Book of Hebrews.
51:26 Hebrews 8:10, God says,
51:28 "I will put my laws in their mind
51:31 and write them on their hearts,
51:33 and I will be their God and they shall be My people."
51:36 God wants to place His law of love
51:40 in our hearts.
51:41 We say unless God's law of love is in our hearts,
51:44 we will never genuinely obey God
51:48 from the right motive.
51:50 And the motive for obedience
51:54 must always be love
51:57 not because we have to, but because we're forced to,
52:01 but because we love to, because we love God,
52:04 and we want to honor Him
52:05 and we want to have a relationship with Him.
52:08 Revelation describes God's faithful
52:11 end time people in these words.
52:13 We read in Revelation 12:17, "And the dragon,"
52:16 and the dragon here is a symbol for Satan,
52:18 "was enraged with the woman."
52:20 And this is a symbol of God's Church,
52:22 or God's people,
52:23 in particular at the end of time as we discover.
52:25 "And he went to make war with the rest or the remnant,
52:28 or those remaining ones at the end of time
52:31 of her offspring,
52:32 who notice, keep the commandments of God
52:35 and have the testimony of Jesus Christ."
52:37 Who is the enemy angry with most at the end of time?
52:42 He's angry with those who are showing love
52:45 and loyalty to Jesus Christ.
52:50 Because he wants to take them away
52:52 from that love and loyalty they're showing to God,
52:55 to His Son, Jesus Christ.
52:57 And he wants to take away
52:59 that loyalty that belongs to God,
53:01 and to His Son, and place that love and loyalty
53:04 toward himself.
53:05 We read in Revelation 14:12, these words,"
53:08 Here is the patience of the saints."
53:10 These are God's end time people described.
53:13 "Here are those who keep the commandments of God
53:16 and the faith of Jesus."
53:18 Here they are spoken of, again, God's end time people
53:22 who the devil hates, but they are faithful to Jesus,
53:26 they keep His commandments and they are patient saints.
53:30 We also read in Revelation 22:14,
53:33 the last chapter in the Book of Revelation,
53:36 these words.
53:38 Revelation 22:14,
53:40 "Blessed are those who do His commandments
53:44 that they may have the right to the tree of life
53:46 and may enter through the gates into the city."
53:49 Notice, this is the reason why the devil hates God's
53:52 end time people.
53:53 This is the reason why
53:55 the enemy doesn't want anyone
53:56 to keep God's commandments,
53:58 because those that love God
54:01 and keep His commandments out of loyalty,
54:05 they will through Christ make their way into the city,
54:10 into the New Jerusalem,
54:12 they will be saved according to Revelation 22:14,
54:15 but notice who is on the outside of the city.
54:18 Notice these words in verse 15.
54:19 We keep reading,
54:21 "But outside are dogs and sorcerers,
54:23 and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters,
54:26 and whoever lives and practices a lie."
54:31 Inside the city we have
54:32 God's commandment keeping people,
54:34 outside the city
54:36 we have those who are commandment breakers,
54:38 can you see that?
54:41 These individuals have chosen to break God's commandments,
54:46 they have chosen not to live their lives in harmony
54:50 with God's principles of love.
54:52 They have chosen to live
54:54 according to the dictates of this world
55:00 according to the constitution of the enemy,
55:04 who roams and who influences this world
55:09 whose basic constitution
55:10 is if it feels good, just do it.
55:14 If it makes you feel good, just do it.
55:16 Don't worry about the consequences to yourself
55:18 or anyone else that have chosen to live like that
55:22 and they will sadly be outside the New Jerusalem.
55:27 Because only those who want to live in harmony
55:30 with the law of God's love will be inside that city
55:36 where there will be peace, and happiness,
55:38 and joy forevermore.
55:40 Ultimately, our love for Jesus
55:44 will determine our loyalty to God's law of love.
55:47 I want to finish off with the words of Jesus,
55:50 where He writes, where He says in John 14:15.
55:54 "If you love Me, keep My commandments."
55:57 If you love Me, keep My commandments.
56:01 That's what it's all about.
56:02 If you love Me, keep My commandments.
56:05 Jesus asks, "Do you love Me?
56:08 Do you want to be part of My kingdom?
56:10 Do you want to be part of My kingdom
56:12 where there will be no more separation?
56:15 Where there will be no more suffering?
56:17 There'll be no more sorrow.
56:19 There'll be no more death, divorce, destruction.
56:22 There'll be no more famine.
56:25 There'll be no more pain.
56:27 Do you want to be part of a kingdom
56:29 where everyone will live in harmony with My law of love,
56:33 love towards God
56:34 and eternal love towards one another.
56:38 If you do, I'm inviting you.
56:40 Come and join me and be part of My kingdom.
56:43 Is that your desire to be part of that kind of kingdom?
56:46 If it is, I want to invite you
56:48 to bow your heads with me as we pray.
56:50 Father in heaven, we thank You so much
56:52 for Your law of love.
56:54 Thank You so much for inviting us to be part
56:56 of Your everlasting kingdom of love
56:58 that will rule forever more.
57:00 Oh, Father, may we all find ourselves in Your kingdom
57:03 in that city on that great and awesome day
57:06 when Jesus comes is your prayer in His name.