Revelation of Jesus Christ


Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Pr. Kenneth Cox


Series Code: RJC

Program Code: RJC000002

00:20 Good evening and welcome to the second presentation
00:25 on The Revelation of Jesus Christ
00:28 which is a chapter by chapter
00:31 study of the book of Revelation.
00:34 So we're very happy to welcome
00:36 all of you that are here tonight,
00:38 those of you that are joining us by television
00:41 or on the radio or by the Internet.
00:45 We're very happy to welcome you again this evening.
00:48 If you're joining us tonight for the first time,
00:51 this is a study of the book of Revelation
00:56 and therefore we would like to invite you to get your Bible.
01:00 If you don't have your Bible
01:03 and you're home, go get it.
01:05 Come back, sit down, bring a highlighter
01:08 and a note pad so you can take some notes
01:11 as we go through and study the book of Revelation.
01:15 Tonight we are studying the first church of the seven.
01:21 This particular section that we're going to be studying
01:24 is on the seven churches of Revelation.
01:27 Seven churches in Asia Minor,
01:30 and we're looking at the very first one called Ephesus.
01:34 And so we hope that as we go through it
01:37 it will give you a little insight into what took place
01:41 then - the church - and what the Lord had to say about it.
01:45 These are extremely important.
01:48 The reason they're important is these are personal
01:53 letters from Jesus Christ.
01:56 That's what they are... they're personal letters
01:59 from Jesus Christ.
02:00 And so they're very important as we study
02:03 and take a look at them.
02:05 And we hope it will help you in your study of it.
02:10 Now our next presentation tomorrow...
02:13 Our next presentation will be on the church of Smyrna.
02:20 This was the second one in the list.
02:24 This is a church that there is no rebuke
02:29 in this church.
02:31 You don't find one thing God says that was wrong with them.
02:36 So it's a very, very important one to look at.
02:40 We're going to be looking at that one tomorrow night
02:43 on the church of Smyrna.
02:45 But tonight we're looking at Ephesus.
02:48 I think you'll find it to be encouraging.
02:52 Helps us understand what God wants us to do.
02:57 This is - as far as I'm concerned -
02:59 of the seven churches, this was the best one
03:02 of all the seven
03:04 was the church of Ephesus.
03:07 So follow carefully as we look at God's Word.
03:11 We'll be doing this each evening at 7 o'clock central time,
03:16 and so be sure and join us wherever you are.
03:20 Uh, check the time. Join us as we study the book of Revelation.
03:25 And we thank you for tuning in and being with us.
03:29 During this section we have the privilege
03:34 of having Joe Pearles with us.
03:37 Joe is a very, very close friend.
03:41 Been a great, great blessing to us singing for us
03:45 in our different meetings and we always enjoy Joe.
03:49 He's going to sing for you a song that
03:52 is very popular - many, many people enjoy -
03:55 entitled Son, Go Bring My Children Home.
03:58 But each night before we have the music
04:01 we're going to read to you all the verses
04:06 that we're going to be looking at tonight.
04:08 So each night Chuck Allgaier
04:11 will come and read those verses to you.
04:14 And so you can follow in your Bibles or
04:17 you can watch it on the screen. It will be both places
04:20 and we hope you'll be blessed.
04:22 So Chuck, read to us what the Word of God has to say
04:26 about the church of Ephesus.
04:34 Ephesus... the church of Ephesus.
04:39 What is the message of God to the church of Ephesus?
04:44 Turn to Revelation chapter 2.
04:49 Revelation chapter 2 verses 1 through 7.
04:54 And we read:
06:05 May God bless the message to the church of Ephesus tonight.
06:29 I have heard
06:33 a distant cry,
06:38 shouting out
06:43 "the time is nigh. "
06:47 As the Father
06:52 tells His Son,
06:57 "work on earth
07:00 this day is done. "
07:06 "Son, go bring
07:10 My children home
07:15 for I want them gathered
07:20 round My throne.
07:24 It's time to reap the harvest
07:29 You have sown.
07:33 Son, go bring
07:37 My children home. "
07:44 What a joy
07:47 to see His face,
07:52 and in His arms
07:56 we will embrace.
08:01 Nevermore
08:05 we'll have to roam
08:11 for we finally
08:15 make it home.
08:20 "Son, go bring
08:24 My children home
08:29 for I want them gathered
08:34 round My throne.
08:38 It's time to reap the harvest
08:44 You have sown.
08:48 Son, go bring
08:52 My children home. "
08:56 "It's time to reap
09:00 the harvest You have sown.
09:06 Son, go bring
09:10 My children home. "
09:15 "Son, go bring
09:20 My children home. "
09:43 Father in Heaven,
09:46 tonight as we look at this first letter
09:50 that You personally wrote to the church of Ephesus,
09:55 we pray that the Holy Spirit
09:57 may be present. That it will give us understanding
10:03 that we might see, that we might understand
10:08 Your leading and Your guiding
10:10 and how they walked with You...
10:12 and how we should walk with You.
10:16 Bless us tonight.
10:18 May our eyes be open and our ears open
10:22 that we may see and hear Your Spirit.
10:26 For this we pray in Christ's name, Amen.
10:34 Well, to come out and kneel here...
10:39 This is the altar of incense
10:45 that was in the sanctuary.
10:46 And this is a replica of it
10:51 as far as size and all is concerned.
10:53 But I knelt on the right side.
10:59 Do you know why?
11:03 Because that was the side of favor.
11:07 I knelt on the right side of it because that is a place
11:11 of favor with God and all.
11:14 So you find that there's a lot of symbolism
11:17 that we're going to be looking at
11:18 as we go through these churches.
11:20 That it mentions different ones, and we hope it will help you
11:24 in your understanding of God's Word.
11:26 This is the church of Ephesus.
11:29 Christ is walking among the seven candlesticks,
11:33 and the church of Ephesus is the first letter
11:38 that He has written to that church.
11:41 Now since this is Christ writing to the churches
11:46 you expect Him to be - How should I put it?
11:50 I do, at least - you expect Him to be
11:53 organized. You expect Him to do it in a special way
11:58 because He is God... and therefore you'll find
12:03 that everything takes place in order.
12:06 And so when it comes to writing to these churches
12:10 everything IS in order.
12:14 And He writes the same format, the same order,
12:20 to all seven churches.
12:22 There are seven parts of it.
12:25 The church of Ephesus meant desirable.
12:29 And as we talk about the city and all this evening,
12:34 you'll see it was a very desirable place to live.
12:36 The climate was very, very nice.
12:39 The city was actually one of the nicest around.
12:44 It had many, many beautiful things about it.
12:46 And the word Ephesus just meant desirable.
12:50 It was a place to be.
12:51 And as far as spiritually is concerned,
12:54 there was much about the church that was desirable.
13:00 Here is the epistle - letter, if you please -
13:05 from Christ to the seven churches
13:07 and it is broken up into exactly seven parts.
13:11 Why seven parts?
13:14 Because seven is a number that represents
13:19 perfection... perfect.
13:22 So in that epistle and in every one of those epistles
13:28 it will follow this very same order.
13:31 There will be the greeting. And after the greeting
13:36 then you're going to find that Christ will be
13:38 identifying Himself.
13:40 And He identifies Himself
13:43 in relationship to the need of that church.
13:47 That's how He identifies Himself
13:49 and we'll look at that. After identification,
13:51 He's going to tell the condition.
13:53 What is the condition of the church?
13:56 What is happening there? What's their condition?
13:59 And then after that, He talks about their problem.
14:04 What is their problem? What are they faced with?
14:07 What do they need to look at?
14:09 And then He gives a counsel to them
14:12 or if you please the solution to their problem.
14:15 He tells them "this is what you need to do
14:17 to solve your problem and all. "
14:20 And then after that He gives a promise
14:23 and then the closing.
14:25 Sometimes you'll find that the closing and the promise
14:30 are turned around and He gives the closing first
14:33 and then the promise.
14:34 Tonight is one of those cases
14:36 where He gives the closing first and then the promise after
14:40 because I guess they needed to be encouraged specially.
14:44 But that format it will follow all the way through
14:49 as we look at these seven different epistles
14:52 that Christ wrote to the churches.
14:54 So, it says as a greeting:
15:01 That's what He says: "To the angel of the church
15:04 of Ephesus, " this is what He is going to say.
15:07 He's greeting the church at Ephesus.
15:10 Then goes on and says that this is a special place.
15:14 This is Ephesus, folks.
15:16 Ephesus was right on the...
15:19 basically on the Aegean Sea.
15:22 As you can see - if you can see it, I think you can -
15:26 there was a river that came right by it,
15:28 and that's the Caster River.
15:31 And this is where the city sat.
15:36 They had probably one of the best known and the nicest
15:41 ports of any place in Asia Minor.
15:45 It was beautifully...
15:47 Ships came in there from all over the world.
15:51 This is where they came, all of the then-known world.
15:54 And they came to Ephesus and they came to this port.
15:58 In fact, this was so nice... by imperial decree
16:04 it was decreed that if somebody, particularly a dignitary
16:08 or somebody from another nation that was visiting,
16:12 they were required to bring them to the port at Ephesus
16:16 to enter Asia. That was required
16:18 because it was such a beautiful place and beautiful port.
16:22 And so many, many ships came there and all.
16:26 The area was very, very lovely.
16:29 The city was lovely; the climate was nice.
16:32 The soil was fertile; it was a wonderful place to live
16:36 was at Ephesus.
16:39 You remember that in the city of Ephesus
16:43 they worshiped a goddess by the name of Diana.
16:49 Yeah, Diana.
16:51 Diana of the Ephesians... a great goddess.
16:56 And you remember this is where Paul and the silversmith
17:00 got into a problem because through Paul's preaching
17:04 and the others' preaching, the trade for idols
17:09 of Diana was falling off and they were unhappy
17:12 about their trade dropping off in sales
17:14 and a great conflict developed between them.
17:18 Let me tell you a little bit about Diana... this goddess.
17:23 They believed that she came from heaven.
17:26 They worshiped her as a goddess of fertility.
17:32 And as you can see from the picture,
17:35 she was a many-breast goddess,
17:40 and this all had to do with her fertility
17:44 that they particularly worshiped.
17:46 And kind of a cult went along with that
17:49 which was very, very immoral...
17:52 which was not too uncommon among paganism
17:56 for that to happen... and they worshiped her.
18:00 They built a temple to Diana
18:03 and they worshiped her in that temple.
18:06 In fact, there were two temples built.
18:09 The first temple was destroyed. In 356 AD it burned...
18:15 burned to the ground.
18:16 It burned to the ground on the very day
18:20 that Alexander the Great was born.
18:23 And later, when he came to age and power,
18:27 he offered to rebuild the temple of Diana...
18:31 but they turned him down; they refused him.
18:34 Said: "No, they would build it themselves. "
18:37 And they rebuilt the temple of Diana.
18:40 This temple, folks, was huge.
18:42 I mean, not a little place.
18:43 It was 442 ft. long.
18:48 225 ft. wide.
18:52 It had 171 pillars in it...
18:56 66 ft. high and 7 ft. in diameter
19:02 was the size of those pillars.
19:04 It was a marvelous temple made out of marble
19:09 that was yellow, red, blue, and white.
19:13 And some historians say that the mortar they used
19:17 was gold to put it together.
19:20 So this temple when they said "Great is the goddess Diana
19:24 of the Ephesians" and they worshiped her,
19:26 there was lots of worship there.
19:29 They believed that she was the mother of God
19:35 and they worshiped her as the mother of God.
19:38 And as Christianity
19:42 became infiltrated by paganism,
19:46 in 451 AD at the Council of Ephesus
19:52 they declared the virgin Mary to be the mother of God
19:58 hoping there would be some relationship there
20:04 to draw paganism into it.
20:07 And that is where we get the Madonna today...
20:12 comes from that background.
20:15 But this was Diana, and they worshiped her there.
20:19 The temple of Diana was destroyed in 265 AD
20:24 by the Goths and has never been rebuilt.
20:27 So this was a little bit of the goddess... of Diana
20:31 that they worshiped. And you remember
20:33 because of this they became upset - Demetrius did -
20:37 and it says:
20:46 And so they worshiped her as a goddess
20:52 in a special way. You're looking... you're looking at a
20:56 theatre... this was the theatre in Ephesus.
20:59 This theatre was capable of seating 25,000 people.
21:05 And as you can see, the road going down to it
21:08 was wide. And these things, folks, in that day
21:14 and age when they existed... were gorgeous.
21:17 They were beautiful, and we only get a faint idea.
21:22 This was the Celsus Library in Ephesus... the ruins of it.
21:26 Give you an idea of what it looked like.
21:29 Also, this was the temple of Hadrian in Ephesus.
21:36 So it gives you a little idea of some of the ruins there
21:40 that exist today.
21:42 Today folks, as we study through you're going to notice
21:46 it'll say that "if you don't change, I'll move your
21:49 candlestick out of its place. "
21:51 There's no port there today.
21:54 That... it is completely all filled in.
21:58 The whole city is about 6 miles away from where it was.
22:03 He certainly moved their candlestick out of its place
22:07 as God said that He would.
22:09 All right, this gives a little idea of what it was like.
22:13 Actually, the work in Ephesus, folks, was
22:18 attended by wonderful people.
22:21 And if you go back and study in your Bible
22:23 you'll find that Priscilla and Aquila were two of the
22:27 first ones to work in Ephesus.
22:30 And you remember while they were there
22:32 they met another man there that they worked with.
22:35 Do you remember what his name was?
22:37 Apollos... and they worked with him. Actually,
22:42 taught him things of the scripture.
22:44 And while Apollos was there they taught him.
22:47 And it says that Paul, later, coming there through
22:52 the coast and all, came to Ephesus
22:54 "and found certain disciples" is what it says.
22:59 And you remember he talked to them and said:
23:02 "Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed? "
23:04 And they said: "Well, we don't even know what you're
23:07 talking about. " And he talked to them about the Holy Spirit.
23:11 You remember Paul prayed for them...
23:13 they received the Holy Spirit.
23:14 This is the beginning of the church in Ephesus
23:19 'cause from that Paul stayed there and worked in Ephesus
23:24 for how long?
23:26 Do you have any idea?
23:28 For three years
23:31 stayed and worked in Ephesus. And under him
23:34 it grew tremendously as he preached and worked there
23:40 in Ephesus.
23:41 Uh, when Paul left, another time you'll find
23:45 that Timothy came back and pastored the church
23:49 in Ephesus... cared for it.
23:51 He pastored it. And in his old age
23:56 John took care of the church in Ephesus.
24:00 He pastored. So very illustrious people
24:04 were pastors here... worked here.
24:07 And you remember Jesus did something.
24:09 He committed His mother to John, and so we find that
24:14 Mary lived in Ephesus.
24:17 And so these are some of the people that are all
24:19 connected with this church in Ephesus
24:22 and the work that they did there.
24:24 And the church grew in a very strong way.
24:40 Folks, history tells us...
24:45 other books... that the church in Ephesus
24:49 by the end of that first century
24:53 was 50,000 believers.
24:57 Just in Ephesus.
25:00 By the end of the century it says here
25:03 "so that all who dwell in Asia heard, "
25:06 by the end of that first century 7,000,000 people
25:11 had accepted Jesus Christ and were Christians.
25:14 So this is a time when the gospel
25:16 moved and went unbelievable across the country
25:21 and hundreds and hundreds and thousands of people
25:24 reached out and accepted Jesus Christ
25:27 as their personal Savior.
25:29 OK, what does this message - this epistle that Christ wrote
25:34 to the church in Ephesus - what's involved in it?
25:37 1. It's an epistle to the local church.
25:40 That's who's addressed here.
25:43 It's written to them... the local church.
25:45 And so it was to be read to the church there in Ephesus
25:48 and from that they were to take encouragement
25:51 and to follow what it said.
25:53 But secondly it was a message to you and to me.
25:59 Now I've read some things where some theologians
26:02 want to disagree with that.
26:04 They say "Well that was just for the church at Ephesus.
26:07 Doesn't have any reference to us. "
26:08 I don't understand that.
26:10 The reason I don't understand it
26:12 is Paul... Paul wrote thirteen epistles.
26:16 Thirteen letters.
26:19 Of those 13 epistles that Paul wrote
26:22 four of them are to individuals.
26:25 Nine of them are to churches.
26:29 And you and I read the epistles of Paul
26:34 to find guidance and direction in our lives.
26:37 If I'm going to read the epistle of Paul,
26:38 why shouldn't I read the epistle of Christ
26:41 for guidance and direction in my life?
26:44 And so I'm saying: "Yes, those letters
26:47 in Revelation apply to you and to me just the same
26:51 as they did back then. "
26:53 And then thirdly it applies to a particular age
26:58 in the church. What I mean by that...
27:01 a particular time - a period of time - in the church.
27:06 You'll find as we go through it
27:07 it applies to it in a very special way.
27:09 The Early Church Age covers the period of time
27:13 from about 31 AD to 100 AD
27:18 is this period of time that the church of Ephesus covers.
27:22 Now I'm giving you some dates... 31 AD to 100 AD...
27:26 Don't tie those down to the point.
27:31 It's just when you talk about a church age
27:34 it represents that period of time. But 100 AD may not be
27:39 the exact turn off for it. I don't know...
27:42 but it does apply to a church age.
27:50 Get your Bible out as we start here.
27:53 Take a look at His message to the church at Ephesus.
27:57 Identification. He's going to identify Himself.
28:01 And He says:
28:09 Well we found out in our study last night
28:13 when it says that Jesus walks among the 7 golden candlesticks
28:18 He made clear who He's talking about
28:21 because He said:
28:38 So we find that these seven lampstands that were there
28:43 those represent the churches. And the stars
28:45 represent His messengers - or, if you please - His ministers.
28:51 That's who's represented there.
28:53 And they carry a very special work with Christ.
28:58 I should mention that Christ here
29:03 is dressed different than the priest.
29:09 He has a golden band around His chest here
29:14 which also represented that He was not only a priest
29:18 but He was a king.
29:21 You see, Christ is not after the Levitical priesthood.
29:27 Christ is after the priesthood of Melchizedek
29:30 which was a priest king. That's what His order is after
29:35 and that's why He's dressed as He is...
29:38 because it's represented as a priest king.
29:41 The church here - the candlesticks - I mentioned
29:44 to you last night - and as I just read to you
29:46 represents the church.
29:50 But these are candlesticks...
29:53 they are not candles.
29:56 Therefore, they do not have light of their own.
30:02 So the church does not have light of its own self.
30:08 You and I are to be lights.
30:12 That's what God calls us to be... we are to be the lights.
30:16 And God is waiting, willing,
30:20 to pour the oil of the Holy Spirit into our lives
30:24 that we might light the people around us
30:28 concerning Jesus Christ.
30:30 That's what He has called us to do.
30:33 OK, let's take a look at the condition...
30:37 the condition of the church of Ephesus.
30:58 I mean there is nothing wrong here.
31:00 He said: "I know your works. "
31:02 And by the way, folks, in every one of the seven churches
31:07 He says: "I know your works. "
31:11 Every last one of them He says that to them:
31:14 "I know your works. " Not all of them have good works,
31:18 but, of course, this church does.
31:20 "I know your works, your labor, your patience,
31:24 that you cannot bear those who are evil. "
31:27 It meant that they labored for the Lord.
31:31 They worked at it.
31:33 I wish today that people labored for the Lord.
31:41 I wish people today
31:45 would schedule
31:49 time when they would say "this is the time
31:54 I'm going to give to the Lord to work for Him. "
31:59 But we work at our job, we do all this...
32:01 but we don't set a time and say
32:04 "this is time I'm going to work for the Lord.
32:06 I'm going to go out here every week and take this time,
32:10 these hours, and do nothing but work for the Lord. "
32:14 And pray and ask the Lord to guide and direct you
32:17 as to what He wants you to do.
32:19 Man, what a difference it would make
32:21 if we would just set aside. These people
32:25 no question about it He said: "I know your works.
32:28 I know what you do; I know your labor... your patience. "
32:34 And by the way, if you're going to work for the Lord,
32:38 you might as well understand that it takes patience
32:41 because God's timing isn't always our timing.
32:47 He does things on His schedule, not on yours or mine.
32:51 And we just have to learn to wait on the Lord.
32:55 Evidently there were people - which there is today -
33:00 claiming to be followers of the Lord...
33:04 apostles, if you please...
33:06 that are not.
33:10 What do you do?
33:12 If you have someone who is claiming to be an apostle,
33:17 claiming to be a follower of the Lord,
33:19 how do you know if they are or they're not?
33:24 How do you know that I'm not?
33:27 How do you know that?
33:32 Well, there's only a couple ways you can know, folks.
33:35 You know, one way is you've got to make sure
33:38 it's in agreement with God's Word.
33:40 You see, if you don't spend time in the Word
33:45 and you know whether this is what God's Word says,
33:49 then you're open for deception.
33:52 These people... they understood God's Word well enough
33:56 that when these people said they were apostles
33:58 they knew whether they were or whether they weren't
34:01 because they knew what God's Word said.
34:05 And I must check it.
34:07 I abide the Word of God and know what it says.
34:10 And then the other way that you and I can know
34:12 whether they are of God - an apostle or not -
34:16 is by their fruits.
34:17 "By their fruits ye shall know them. "
34:20 That's simply the way you find out.
34:23 And so we need to take God's Word... make sure...
34:26 It goes on and says:
34:35 Very, very important that you and I
34:40 labor for the Lord. Oh, yes,
34:44 there'll be times when you'll get tired.
34:48 There'll be times, dear friend,
34:51 when you don't feel like you can
34:52 get one foot in front of the other.
34:56 But God says
34:58 "I know your labor. "
35:00 Said: "Don't get weary
35:03 of serving the Lord. "
35:05 Serve Him, walk with Him, follow Him.
35:09 What a difference it will make.
35:11 He said: "I know all this about you. "
35:13 This is the condition of the church in Ephesus.
35:18 Paul - who had spent three years there working,
35:22 establishing that church - understood that something
35:26 was going to happen. And so as he was talking
35:30 to the church of Ephesus... and here in Acts 20
35:33 that's exactly who he's talking to...
35:35 He said:
35:44 He said: "After I'm gone
35:47 savage wolves are going to come in among you.
35:51 They won't spare the flock. "
36:17 Paul understood that when he was gone
36:21 there would be people that would come
36:23 that would try to lead the church away.
36:28 Said: "That's going to happen. "
36:30 I want you to remember this
36:32 because I'm going to come back to it in just a moment
36:34 because it's extremely important what happens here
36:37 and what takes place. Because this happens
36:39 over and over and over in churches throughout the world.
36:47 And then He says: "Here's your problem. "
36:52 "That's your condition... here's your problem. "
37:06 "Worse than all this is you've left your first love. "
37:12 Folks, I have seen this happen
37:15 time, time, and time again.
37:20 I've seen churches... churches that
37:26 set out to do something for the Lord
37:28 and caught on fire. And I mean went out and worked for the Lord
37:33 and people came in. They had baptisms and
37:37 people coming in and joining the church
37:39 and the church was growing.
37:41 And then the devil... every time I'll assure you
37:47 it does not fail... the devil will come in
37:50 and cause something to happen
37:53 and will turn their attention away from what they are doing
37:58 and they'll start doing something else.
38:01 And then along comes somebody in the church
38:04 or even the minister and they'll say:
38:07 "Ah, evangelism doesn't do any good.
38:10 They go out the back door
38:11 as fast as they come in the front door.
38:14 We don't believe in doing evangelism any more. "
38:17 Let me tell you something...
38:20 the moment that happens
38:23 that church has lost its first love.
38:28 "After I'm gone, " Paul said,
38:31 grievous wolves are going to come in. "
38:34 And that's exactly what they do.
38:37 They come in and they do that type of thing
38:39 over and over and over again
38:42 and the church loses all the things that she was trying to do
38:46 and forgets what she's there for.
38:49 Nothing can be worse than losing the first love.
38:55 Do you understand
38:57 when He says: "You've lost your first love? "
39:00 The church, folks, is the bride.
39:04 Are you putting it together?
39:07 The church is the bride.
39:09 I can tell you right now, if the bride
39:12 has lost her love
39:16 there's nothing left in the church.
39:18 There's nothing left of the marriage.
39:20 She can say all she wants to
39:23 about their relationship, but if she's lost her love
39:29 for her husband, it's over!
39:32 It's ruined. And that's what it's saying here.
39:36 "You've lost your first love. "
39:37 The bride's lost her love.
39:39 It's a terrible condition.
39:42 So He's telling them: "This is your problem:
39:45 you've lost your love. "
40:01 Said: "Do the first works. Unless you do that...
40:05 You've got to repent from where you've fallen. "
40:11 God isn't asking here, folks,
40:14 How should I put it?
40:17 He's not asking for you to have that first love.
40:24 Very, very hard to get that first love back
40:29 if you've lost it and it's been 30 or 40 years.
40:37 What He's saying to you is "If you want to get love back
40:41 then do the first works. "
40:45 That's the way you get it back is doing the first works.
40:50 "And unless you're willing to do that, " He said:
40:52 "I'm going to move your candlestick out of its place. "
40:56 Said: "You must repent; you must come back
40:59 and do what I have called you to do. "
41:03 Do you remember?
41:06 Do you remember when you gave your heart to the Lord?
41:10 Do you remember that experience?
41:12 Oh, it may have been beside your mother's knee.
41:16 Or it may have been in church.
41:20 Or it may have been somebody who was talking to you
41:24 about giving your heart to the Lord.
41:26 Or it may have been at an evangelistic meeting
41:30 where you responded and gave your heart to Jesus Christ.
41:34 Do you remember the joy that came into your life
41:37 when you knew your sins were forgiven and, you know,
41:40 that everything was right between you and the Lord?
41:43 And the love that filled your heart and your soul?
41:47 This is... this is the first works.
41:50 This is what He's asking you and I to do.
41:53 Do you remember when you were baptized?
41:57 You remember when you came up out of the water
42:00 and oh the joy that was there
42:04 as you were baptized and you knew that all your sins
42:08 had been washed away?
42:10 That you were clean in Jesus Christ.
42:13 The joy that filled your life... this is what He's talking about.
42:18 That you and I must come back to that experience
42:21 and do the first works to understand the joy that
42:26 Christ brings into our hearts and into our lives.
42:30 Do you remember how that it just simply filled your soul?
42:37 And how you shared it with everybody
42:39 you came into contact with.
42:41 You talked to them about the message.
42:43 You told them how Jesus... what Jesus had done for you.
42:47 You told them about the message that you learned.
42:49 You witnessed to everybody around you about Jesus Christ.
42:53 Do you remember that?
42:54 Because it was the first love!
42:57 Something that filled your life and you wanted to do
43:01 and you couldn't keep quiet.
43:06 That is what brings about
43:10 the love in your heart.
43:13 Oh, I can remember... I can remember
43:17 talking to everybody about it.
43:19 I can also remember being in evangelistic meetings
43:24 and how I longed to just get by myself
43:27 and talk to the Lord.
43:30 How... what it did for me.
43:33 Do you remember how... how you couldn't...
43:35 you couldn't get enough of the Word of God?
43:37 Do you remember that?
43:39 You remember when you got... You know, you just couldn't
43:41 hardly wait to get into the scripture and see what it
43:44 had to say. And as you read it you saw new things
43:47 and it filled your heart and your soul
43:49 and you learned things. You said "I never knew that before! "
43:52 Marvelous! I can remember how it just brought
43:57 so much joy to my life
44:00 as I learned the things that God had to say in the scripture.
44:05 This was part of what happened
44:08 because there was a first love there.
44:12 Do you remember spending time in prayer?
44:16 Hmm? Talking to the Lord... praying to Him?
44:23 Actually, time just seemed
44:29 to not be a factor.
44:31 Have you ever, you know, back then when the first love
44:34 was in your life found yourself talking to the Lord
44:37 and first thing you know you'd been talking to Him for an hour?
44:41 Just, you know, it's just there; burned within your heart,
44:45 within your soul.
44:47 This is what God is talking about.
44:52 Fervor that fills your life:
44:57 this is the first love.
45:01 He says: "Do the first works. "
45:05 Now folks, it doesn't come
45:09 by feeling.
45:12 That isn't the way it comes.
45:15 It comes by getting back into the Word of God.
45:20 It comes by spending time in prayer with Him.
45:23 It comes by spending time with the Lord.
45:27 And as you begin to do those first works
45:31 then the love will come back and with that will come feeling.
45:35 Don't try to look for it another way.
45:39 It comes in that order.
45:42 You spend time with Him. What a difference it will make
45:45 in your life and in mine when you come back
45:49 to that first love.
45:51 Well, what counsel does He give us?
45:55 What does He tell us to do?
46:07 That's what He's saying: "remember where you've fallen. "
46:12 I think one of the things the church... or I should say
46:17 the people in the church - Christians today -
46:20 need to do, particularly here in the United States,
46:23 is they need to take a good, hard look
46:28 at themselves and understand where they have fallen.
46:33 They really do...
46:35 because there is so much commercialism,
46:39 there is so much of the things of this life
46:41 and cares of this life that most Christians today
46:44 don't have the slightest idea of what their condition is.
46:49 And they can't... they can't change
46:52 and they can't turn around and they can't do the first works
46:56 until they wake up to what their condition is.
47:00 Need to understand "from where you have fallen. "
47:05 Come before the Lord, repent,
47:10 and THEN do the first works.
47:13 Talk to the Lord about it,
47:15 and He will change your life and make you different.
47:19 This is what He does and this is what that church needed.
47:23 And dear friend, I'm sorry to say that today
47:27 we need is desperately
47:30 because most of us... sorry...
47:36 are lukewarm.
47:39 Lukewarm.
47:41 Certainly not on fire.
47:44 So we need to realize from where we have fallen...
47:48 what takes place.
47:59 Nicolatians... who were they?
48:03 These were the followers of the deacon Nicolas.
48:08 Nicolas was one of the first deacons that was ordained.
48:15 Nicolas came to the place that he believed...
48:18 he believed that your spiritual condition had nothing to do
48:24 with your physical.
48:28 Therefore he believed that you could do anything you wanted to
48:33 physically... that it had no relationship
48:38 to your spiritual condition...
48:40 and that fornication, adultery,
48:45 and all that had nothing to do with your spiritual condition.
48:48 Also this went along very much with what was coming out of
48:54 places like Alexandria and Rome
48:59 in which they were teaching Gnosticism.
49:03 Gnosticism simply did the same thing... that it took
49:07 the Word of God, lessened it, and applied it to it.
49:12 It took... it took the teachings of Paul
49:16 that taught Christian liberty
49:20 and they took his teachings and turned it into a license
49:25 to live contrary to God's law.
49:28 This is what basically was happening here.
49:31 And these were these people that followed Nicolas
49:34 or the Nicolatians.
49:35 Uh, do we face that today? Yes!
49:39 This is a belief that you find out there called antinomianism.
49:44 Antinomianism teaches that you can
49:49 accept Christ and it has nothing to do
49:55 with how you live after that.
49:58 You can accept Christ and live like the devil
50:01 and still be saved.
50:03 That's basically what it's teaching.
50:05 God's Word does not teach that.
50:08 And this was the problem. He said "I hate this. "
50:11 Christ said: "I hate this doctrine of Nicolatians. "
50:15 God gave us His law.
50:21 Those laws are ten eternal principles
50:24 that are to guide and direct our lives.
50:28 And by my... by my surrender
50:34 to the working of the Holy Spirit in my life
50:37 I am to live in accordance with God's law.
50:42 He says here:
50:52 Jesus said: "I didn't come to do away with the law.
50:55 I came to live a perfect life in accordance to the law. "
51:00 That's what fulfill means.
51:02 He means I fulfilled every aspect of the law.
51:06 "I didn't do away with it; I fulfilled it. "
51:20 So He said the law is eternal.
51:22 It's not going to change,
51:24 and you and I must simply
51:30 put our lives in the hands of the Lord and trust Him
51:33 that He will live in us... help us to walk
51:39 according to Him.
51:40 And then He comes to the closing
51:42 and He says this:
51:49 He said: "Open up your ears.
51:51 Listen to what I'm telling you because it's very important
51:55 that you understand what I have to say. "
51:58 And in this case, He gives this closing
52:02 before He gives the promise.
52:04 And now He gives the promise.
52:06 The promise is simply this:
52:18 Every one of the seven epistles of Christ
52:23 He says: "I know your works. "
52:27 But every one of those seven epistles He also says
52:31 "to him who overcomes. "
52:35 Every one of them says that.
52:36 I must bring my life into conformity to God's will
52:42 through the working of the Holy Spirit in my life.
52:46 Have to day by day grow in grace
52:50 and the knowledge of the Son of God.
52:52 And He says: "to that person who does overcome, "
52:55 He said, "then I will let him eat of the Tree of Life. "
53:05 You and I have the privilege - follow me -
53:09 you have the privilege of eating of the Tree of Life today.
53:15 Did you know that?
53:17 Yeah, you have that privilege.
53:27 This... this...
53:33 is the Word of Life. This is the Tree of Life
53:35 to you and I today.
53:37 The same energy that created this world
53:42 is the same energy that's contained in this book.
53:46 And if you and I will spend time in it,
53:49 it can be the Tree of Life to you and to me.
54:06 This is what God wants to do.
54:17 All God's people are going to come.
54:19 They are going to gather there.
54:20 They are going to eat of the Tree of Life.
54:33 This was the message of God to the church of Ephesus.
54:39 Our next presentation will be His message
54:42 to the church of Smyrna.
54:45 Let's pray.
54:47 Father in Heaven,
54:49 we thank you for your counsel.
54:52 We pray that we might take these words into our lives,
54:55 into our heart, that we each
54:58 might follow Thee and walk with Thee
55:01 and that the first love would burn in our lives.
55:04 We pray in Christ's name, Amen.
55:07 May God bless you. Have a great evening.
55:10 We'll look forward to seeing you on our next presentation.
55:15 Hello, folks.
55:16 One of my favorite things to do in the springtime
55:19 is to take a walk and look at all the new growth.
55:23 The earth seems so fresh,
55:24 and each tree bursts forth with buds and flowers.
55:28 That reminds me of a parable that Jesus told His followers
55:32 in Luke 21.
55:33 You see, He had just described the events which will happen
55:37 immediately before His second coming.
55:53 But in verse 29 Jesus turns their attention
55:57 to the fig tree.
55:58 And ever since then, budding trees have served as a permanent
56:02 reminder that our time here is very short
56:06 and the second coming is very near.
56:23 Folks, many of these signs are already upon us.
56:27 The earth groans from the greed of those who have
56:30 exploited her resources, ravaged her land
56:34 and destroyed plants and animals and atmosphere alike
56:37 in a selfish pursuit of wealth.
56:40 Have you seen the signs?
56:42 Have you seen men's hearts failing with fear?
56:45 If you haven't, then I'm afraid you're not watching
56:48 very closely. However, the Holy Spirit is hard at work
56:52 and so are many Christians who long for an end to sin
56:56 and look forward to their soon-coming Savior.
56:59 That's why we continue to preach the gospel
57:02 to as many as we can through any means that we can
57:06 as often as we can.
57:08 Our ministry team is supported solely
57:10 by your contributions... and we thank you for your
57:14 faithful prayers and financial support.
57:17 May God richly bless you.
57:20 Please consider what you can do for those who still don't know
57:23 about Jesus. As the Holy Spirit impresses,
57:26 please send your tax-deductible gifts to:
57:40 Thank you for helping us spread the light of God's Word
57:43 through television and radio.
57:45 Your gifts help bring the blessed hope of salvation
57:47 to millions around the world.


Revised 2014-12-17