Participants: Lonnie Melashenko
Series Code: VOPS
Program Code: VOPS000017
00:30 Hello, everyone.
00:31 I want you to take your lesson outline
00:34 that was handed to you as you came
00:35 into the seminar this evening
00:37 to the chart of the two tunnels.
00:39 It should look something like this.
00:41 Coordinators in the downlink locations,
00:43 you can find that on your website,
00:44 in case you didn't get them
00:45 into the hands of your local students.
00:48 And hand that out tomorrow night.
00:50 You'll notice on the back
00:51 a very helpful glossary of keys to the prophetic symbols
00:55 that we've been studying from night to night.
00:57 And if you're watching at home,
00:58 I want you to run and get your Bible and join us.
01:01 There's a big class tonight
01:02 and turn to the Book of Revelation 1:1, 2 and 3.
01:06 And each time we read off a little text
01:08 which is printed for you there on your outline,
01:11 I'd like to invite you to take your Bible
01:12 and do a little homework.
01:13 As we refer to the text just draw a neat little circle
01:16 around the verse numerals that we're studying
01:19 and we'll do some underlining, too.
01:21 That will appear on the screen, in case I forget.
01:24 Now we all have that passage together,
01:26 I'd like to have you read,
01:27 everyone here tonight, out loud, Revelation 1:1.
01:31 You might want to follow the screen to make sure
01:33 we're all reading the same translation.
01:35 All together, opening the Book of Revelation,
01:37 read with me.
01:38 "The--" Hidden Book of--
01:43 Did I make a mistake? Yes.
01:45 What does your Bible say? Revelation.
01:47 You mean this isn't hidden? This isn't deep?
01:49 This isn't perplexing? No.
01:51 What does the second word of your Bible say?
01:54 Revelation. "The Revelation."
01:57 What does revelation mean? Revealed.
01:59 That which has been revealed.
02:00 There's nothing hidden, there's nothing secret about this.
02:03 And it is the revelation of whom?
02:05 Jesus Christ. I feel better already.
02:08 Don't you? Amen.
02:10 Now let's read again, all together.
02:11 "The Revelation of Jesus Christ which God gave unto Him
02:17 to show His servants things which must," what?
02:22 "Shortly come to pass."
02:23 And notice, "He sent and signified,"
02:27 see that word, sign-if-y, signify.
02:31 This is sign language, this is symbols.
02:35 Now you continue to watch in your Bible while I read.
02:38 "Who bore witness to the word of God,
02:40 and to the testimony of Jesus Christ
02:42 and to all things that he saw."
02:43 Now you join me and everybody read together again.
02:46 Cursed is he who-- Blessed.
02:49 Did I make another mistake? Yes.
02:50 You better keep on me tonight.
02:52 What does your Bible say? Blessed.
02:54 Circle that word, blessed.
02:56 The pastor of a 3,000 member church,
02:59 who had President Eisenhower as a member,
03:02 told his congregation, "You will go crazy
03:05 if you read the Book of Revelation."
03:07 What does your Bible say will happen if you read it?
03:10 "Blessed is he who reads and those who hear,"
03:13 you might want to circle that.
03:14 "And the words of this prophecy and keep those things
03:17 which are written in it," for what?
03:19 "The time is near."
03:21 All right, we're ready now
03:23 to plunge into the heart of the Book.
03:24 Turn over just 3 pages forward to Chapter 12 of Revelation.
03:30 When we get to Revelation 12,
03:32 I'd like to invite you to take your little pen
03:33 and circle numeral 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.
03:37 Revelation 12:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6,
03:39 then put a little circle around 14 and 17.
03:44 When you've done that, I want you to try to forget
03:46 all of our plans for the week that's coming up,
03:49 all of the pressures you might have,
03:51 maybe the vacation you're planning to Myrtle Beach
03:53 or wherever, all of the problems
03:54 and I want you to try to visualize
03:57 what I read as you follow along.
03:59 Revelation 12:1-6.
04:01 Follow in your Bible, if you'd like
04:02 or look at the screen.
04:04 "Now a great sign appeared in heaven,
04:08 a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet,
04:11 and on her head a garland of twelve stars.
04:14 Then being with child, she cried out in labor
04:17 and in pain to give birth.
04:18 And another sign appeared in heaven,
04:20 behold, a great, fiery red dragon
04:23 having seven heads and ten horns,
04:25 and seven diadems on his heads.
04:27 His tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven
04:31 and threw them to the earth.
04:33 And the dragon stood before the woman
04:35 who was ready to give birth,
04:37 to devour her Child as soon as it was born.
04:40 She bore a male Child
04:43 who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron.
04:45 And her Child was caught up to God and His throne.
04:48 Then the woman fled into the wilderness,
04:51 where she has a place prepared by God,
04:53 that they should feed her there
04:54 one thousand two hundred and sixty days."
04:57 Someone says, "Lon, look.
04:59 You just told us this was not a hidden book.
05:02 What on earth do these verses mean?"
05:05 May I have your eyes?
05:08 Let me just try to re-live what we just read.
05:10 And then we'll go back to the Bible.
05:12 Remember John, the beloved disciple who wrote Revelation,
05:15 he was exiled on a lonely island called Patmos.
05:18 And God showed him there a vision
05:21 of this beautiful woman, standing off in the heavens.
05:25 And she is clothed with nothing
05:27 except for the pure iridescent folds of the light of the sun.
05:31 On this woman's head is a diadem
05:33 of 12 sparkling, brilliant, living stars.
05:37 She's pregnant, about to deliver.
05:41 But something is beneath her feet.
05:43 She's standing on the moon.
05:46 Now over to one side
05:47 is a red dragon snapping furious,
05:51 intending to destroy the Child as soon as it's born.
05:55 Well, she gives to birth to a man child
05:57 destined to rule all nations, but he's caught up to God.
06:01 So evidently the dragon fails to destroy the Child
06:04 and he becomes so angry
06:05 he turns his destructive fury on the woman
06:08 and so persecutes and attempts to destroy her
06:11 that God takes her and hides her
06:13 in the wilderness for 1,260 days.
06:18 You say, "Well, Lonnie, the picture is a bit clearer.
06:19 But what on earth does that mean?"
06:22 Obviously, we're dealing with symbolic prophecy.
06:26 And as we've learned from night to night,
06:27 we borrow symbols, even today in our world, don't we?
06:30 You've got an outline page
06:32 with the keys to prophetic symbols.
06:33 That will be handy to tuck in your Bible.
06:35 Now some people say, "Well, you know,
06:37 all of those beasts of Revelation,
06:39 I know what they are,
06:40 they are just the beastly doctrines
06:41 that some churches teach."
06:44 I've even heard some say that,
06:45 "Well, that beast of Revelation 13,
06:47 that must be Henry Kissinger."
06:50 Now, folks, you get into difficulty
06:52 if you place your own interpretation
06:53 on these symbols.
06:55 But if the scripture provides the key
06:57 that unlocks the meaning of the symbols,
06:59 there's no problem, right?
07:01 Now Daniel 7:23 we discovered,
07:04 says that in prophecy a beast represents, what?
07:08 A nation or a kingdom.
07:10 And we, of course, borrow this idea
07:11 of using animals for symbols for nations.
07:15 If you see a bear in a political cartoon,
07:17 what nation's in the news?
07:19 If you see an eagle flying through the air?
07:22 United States of America.
07:23 If you see a lion, what country is there?
07:25 Great Britain.
07:26 Okay, now if you see a beaver, what country is that?
07:31 My folks, north of the 49th
07:33 parallel in Canada, let me hear it.
07:35 Canada. Now a question.
07:39 What is this woman in Revelation a symbol of?
07:44 Well, that's our next text.
07:46 We got to have several texts for this.
07:47 You don't build any doctrine on one text.
07:49 You got to have at least two. Let's look at Jeremiah 6:2.
07:54 You can look at it on the screen,
07:55 we'll be staying in Revelation,
07:56 but if you want to quickly flip over there, Jeremiah 6:2.
07:59 You can put a circle around verse 2.
08:01 It says, "I have likened the daughter of Zion
08:04 to a lovely and delicate woman."
08:07 You see, friends, Zion in scripture
08:09 refers to Jerusalem or God's people.
08:12 The daughter of Zion refers to God's church.
08:16 A woman represents God's people.
08:18 Well, let's have one more text.
08:20 Let's go to Apostle Paul to make sure.
08:22 2 Corinthians 11:2.
08:25 You've got those written on your outline,
08:27 so you can look them up later.
08:28 Notice the screen.
08:29 "For I am jealous for you,"
08:32 Paul says, "with godly jealously.
08:35 For I have betrothed you to one husband."
08:38 Now what does betrothed means? It means engaged you.
08:42 "That I may present you as a chaste virgin to,"" whom?
08:48 See, Christ in scripture is symbolized as the groom,
08:52 His bride is His church.
08:55 So God gives us this gorgeous metaphor,
08:57 a lovely symbol, a woman is God's church.
09:02 But I want you to notice
09:03 though that the character of the woman
09:05 determines the character of the church.
09:07 If she's pure, if she's innocent,
09:09 if she's a virtuous woman,
09:11 a virgin that represents a pure church,
09:14 a holy church, a true church.
09:17 Some parents say, "Oh, brother Lonnie,
09:19 I sure don't want my kids
09:20 to get a hold of the Book of Revelation
09:21 'cause it talks about the harlot there.
09:23 That woman in scarlet, loose and fallen."
09:26 Folks, that is not talking about physical impurity at all.
09:29 It's talking about a church that's played harlotry
09:32 and been unfaithful to her Lord.
09:34 See? Now let's go to something else.
09:38 This picture of the church is talking about
09:41 the Presbyterian church, is that right?
09:45 A Baptist church? No.
09:47 What does this woman mean? Which church in particular?
09:52 A little Greek lesson right now.
09:56 That's the word that's translated "church".
09:57 You say it with me in three syllables.
10:04 Put them together now. Ekklesia.
10:06 What does that mean in the Greek?
10:09 It literally means "God's called out ones."
10:15 I want to be one of God's called out ones.
10:17 Don't you? Amen.
10:19 If you're one of God's called out ones,
10:21 you belong to His church.
10:23 Now once we have the key symbols in place,
10:26 watch how this unfolds in a beautiful picture.
10:29 Because here in Revelation 12, John sees the pure woman,
10:33 this pure church of his day pictured
10:37 as a virgin in white.
10:39 She's a pure church then.
10:40 This is the church of Jesus in the New Testament,
10:43 clothed with the iridescent light of the noonday sun
10:46 or with Jesus who's known as the light of the world.
10:50 I want you to notice that this New Testament church
10:52 is crowned with a diadem of 12 stars.
10:57 Help me out, class.
10:58 Who were the brilliant, sparkling 12 living stars
11:01 of the New Testament church?
11:03 The 12 apostles, right?
11:06 So the earliest days of the New Testament church
11:09 are symbolized here by this virgin,
11:11 crowned with the 12 apostles.
11:14 And she's standing on something.
11:16 She's standing on the moon.
11:19 Question for you, does the moon shine
11:22 from its own light or from borrowed light?
11:24 Which? Borrowed light.
11:26 Borrowed, that's right.
11:27 So, here the New Testament church,
11:29 you see, is standing on something, the moon.
11:31 Something is passing away. Something's beneath her feet.
11:35 What a beautiful symbol
11:36 of the Old Testament dispensation, passing away,
11:40 all which had pointed forward to Christ.
11:43 All of those types and ceremonies
11:45 and symbols pointed forward to Christ the true Lamb of God
11:49 who died on Calvary's cross.
11:51 You see the light in those lambs of the Old Testament
11:53 was only a reflection of a greater light
11:56 that pointed to Jesus.
11:58 So all of this now was passing away,
12:01 it was beneath her feet.
12:03 The moon is a perfect representation
12:05 of the Old Testament which shone from light borrowed
12:08 from Jesus in the New Testament.
12:11 Well, now this woman is pregnant,
12:14 she's about ready to give birth to a man Child,
12:17 who would rule all nations with a rod of iron,
12:20 but who would be caught up to God and to His throne.
12:22 Who is this? Jesus.
12:25 But someone says, "Well, wait a minute.
12:26 Then isn't this woman Mary?"
12:29 No. Remember this is just a symbol.
12:32 Yes, Mary is the mother of Jesus,
12:34 but prophecy tells us
12:36 that we will see this woman in white,
12:39 clear to the second coming.
12:41 Anybody here seen Mary? No.
12:45 See this is the symbol of the church.
12:47 The New Testament church of Jesus Christ
12:49 gives birth to Christ.
12:51 But now there's a snapping, furious,
12:54 red dragon nearby in verse 4.
12:56 Who is that red dragon? Satan.
12:59 Are you sure? Yeah.
13:00 Notice verse 9.
13:02 "So the dragon was cast out,
13:05 that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan,
13:07 who deceives the whole world, he was cast to the earth,
13:10 and his angels were cast out with him."
13:12 So who is the dragon? Satan, primarily.
13:16 But you know Satan never comes out
13:18 into the battle in visible form, does he?
13:20 Anybody here ever seen Satan? No.
13:23 You might think you might have seen somebody like him,
13:25 but he usually works through persons,
13:28 he works through institutions, he works through evil things.
13:31 All right.
13:33 Now through whom did Satan work
13:34 to destroy the Christ Child as soon as He was born?
13:39 Herod who tried to destroy
13:41 all the babies in Bethlehem, remember?
13:43 But he failed.
13:44 And then the Bible says,
13:45 Jesus was caught up to God and to His throne.
13:48 And so furious was Satan to destroy Christ,
13:52 that when he couldn't destroy Him personally,
13:54 he turned his destructive fury on the woman.
13:57 He tried to destroy the New Testament church
14:00 by persecuting her until it got so bloody and so furious,
14:04 God had to take the woman and hide His church
14:07 in the wilderness for 1,260 days.
14:13 Now one more symbol to unlock.
14:15 We've learned that a day
14:17 in prophetic symbolic prophecy represents what?
14:19 A year.
14:20 Ezekiel 4:6, Numbers 14:34,
14:23 two texts at least to prove any point.
14:26 It says, "Each day for a year,"
14:28 so this would represent then 1,260 literal years
14:33 of persecution that God would take His church, the woman,
14:36 and hide her in the wilderness for 1,260 years.
14:41 Now I want you to take your pen and your pencil,
14:42 let's go to the chart of the tunnels right now.
14:45 I'm gonna go to the chart board.
14:49 Now over this timeline at the top,
14:51 if you'd like to write on your page,
14:53 let's just put that in, 1,260 years.
14:58 All right.
15:03 Where is this in the Christian era?
15:06 Where does that come in?
15:08 To get our bearings,
15:09 let's put the cross in over here on the left, okay?
15:13 And over on the right,
15:14 why don't we put in our day, this is us here today.
15:19 Okay, so this is beginning
15:20 to get a little bit more definition.
15:23 Our day.
15:25 1,260 years of persecution, tribulation.
15:29 Well, we know that after the apostles died,
15:32 persecution grew worse and worse,
15:35 greater and greater and greater
15:37 for the first few hundred years,
15:39 second hundred years, third hundred years
15:40 until one day, history actually tells us that 300 leaders
15:43 of the early Christian church came together for a meeting
15:46 and not one of them had a normal body.
15:49 Every one of them was crippled and stoned
15:51 and eyes plucked out, missing limbs,
15:53 they'd been tortured and persecuted.
15:55 How many of you came into this meeting
15:56 tonight that way because of your faith.
16:01 You haven't been tortured,
16:02 you haven't been persecuted like that.
16:04 You know, maybe our religion is too cheap, isn't it?
16:07 Friend, unless you have something to die for,
16:10 you don't have anything worth living for.
16:13 But Satan's very subtle.
16:15 At first he used the Roman Empire to persecute.
16:19 Gladiator fights.
16:20 Throw those Christians to the lions in the coliseum.
16:22 Torture them.
16:23 But then Satan got the church to begin persecuting itself.
16:28 You say, how did he do that?
16:30 Well, under these torturous threats,
16:31 some of the Christians began to weaken
16:33 and they compromised their faith
16:35 and they made some concessions to heathenism
16:37 and paganism and watered down certain teachings.
16:42 But they were embarrassed
16:43 by these other more courageous Christians
16:45 who lived up to their conscience.
16:47 So these compromising drifters turned
16:50 and persecuted their own brethren.
16:51 And it's always that way, isn't it?
16:54 Some people are probably laughing at you
16:55 for spending three weekends with your Bible
16:58 at these meetings here at the Jamil center.
17:00 And they haven't cracked the Book in 20 years.
17:03 Friend, don't worry about ridicule.
17:05 Thank God you have the courage to come to these study seminars
17:08 and learn about God's prophetic truth.
17:11 But the persecution got so bad that by the year 533 A.D.
17:18 the Emperor Justinian issued a decree
17:22 removing all protective barriers
17:24 to allow full and relentless persecution of any Christians.
17:27 No restraints, no protection for the church.
17:30 And that decree actually went into effect,
17:32 5 years later in the year 538, that is in history.
17:38 That decree went into effect.
17:40 Now anyone could be slain for the simple crime of belief
17:43 in the word of God or studying the Bible.
17:46 All right, now you add 538 to 1,260,
17:50 what does it come out to?
17:53 What year would it end?
17:55 1798. All right.
18:00 Historians call these 1,260 years
18:03 of persecution the Dark-- What? Ages.
18:07 So dark, that as late as the 16th century
18:12 in France, 50,000 people,
18:15 the flower of France were dragged from their beds
18:17 at the toll of the bell at midnight
18:19 and they were slain in the streets.
18:20 It's called the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre
18:23 in Paris, France, when blood ran like water.
18:26 But 200 years later there was a complete political reversal
18:31 and military coup when the persecuted
18:34 became the persecutors.
18:35 And even the king lost his head and all Europe was aghast.
18:39 You read European history, it's phenomenal.
18:41 But suddenly the persecution mysteriously diminished
18:44 and it dried up as Jesus predicted, by the way.
18:46 Why did it dry up?
18:48 Because in 1787 we have the French Revolution.
18:53 When suddenly persecution just stopped in 1798
18:58 when the Pope was taken captive
19:00 by Napoleon's general, Berthier,
19:02 exactly 1,260 years later.
19:07 But you know, ladies and gentlemen,
19:08 during those tragic Dark Ages,
19:11 creditable historians estimate that 50 million people perished
19:16 for no other crime than to protect this Book.
19:20 Folks, the story of the Bible is a thriller.
19:23 It cost human blood.
19:26 Satan tried to stamp it out. Prophecy predicted it.
19:30 But now let's come down to the next chart.
19:33 The tunnels and the railroad tracks.
19:36 I wonder how many budding young artists we have here tonight.
19:39 And I want you to draw right now with me a train,
19:43 maybe a locomotive, would you?
19:45 Come on, I don't want to see you looking at me,
19:46 I want you to be drawing. Right now, everybody.
19:48 Camera's gonna come down, pick up on some of you,
19:49 so you got to have something on your page
19:51 or we're gonna be embarrassed.
19:53 I'll draw something here. How are you doing?
19:56 Don't make your train too big, it can't get into the tunnel.
20:00 I'm gonna make an old fashioned locomotive here.
20:03 How about you?
20:04 Put a couple of cars on it if you want.
20:06 Maybe put a little steam engine there on the top.
20:13 All right.
20:15 May I have your eyes?
20:18 Suppose you're standing on a mountain up
20:19 there in Banff, Canada watching the railroad tracks
20:22 wind through the valley heading for a tunnel.
20:25 And you watch a black locomotive,
20:28 it's made out of iron,
20:29 it's one of the old iron horses.
20:30 It's on a single track tunnel
20:32 and approaches this tunnel with 12 black iron cars
20:37 and it thunders down the track and disappears into the tunnel.
20:41 What kind of a train should come out
20:43 of the other end of the tunnel?
20:46 Same one. Same kind.
20:49 But suppose a black locomotive
20:53 with 12 iron cars thunders down the track,
20:56 darts into this tunnel and you watch
20:58 and out the other end spurts a red diesel
21:03 with 250 red steel cars steaming out the other end,
21:09 what would you say?
21:13 Something happened to that train in the tunnel, right?
21:17 Yes. Now forget trains.
21:20 If you can, I want you to come down to the next chart.
21:24 What do you see coming down the track of time?
21:28 The church of Jesus Christ,
21:31 through the first hundred years,
21:33 the second hundred years, through five centuries.
21:37 But Satan so terribly persecuted that church
21:40 that God had to take her
21:41 and hide her in the wilderness tunnel in 538 A.D.
21:45 For 1,260 years, after which should emerge around 1798
21:52 the same church before the world.
21:55 Now, friend, the true
21:56 and the faithful loyal virgin Christian church
21:59 of Jesus Christ was hidden from view for 1,260 years.
22:04 But notice, the same pure church
22:06 that Jesus and the Apostles taught,
22:08 goes into the tunnel in 538 A.D.
22:12 Answer me, what kind of church
22:15 should come out of the tunnel around 1798?
22:18 Same thing.
22:21 But instead, 250 different denominations
22:26 spurt out the other side,
22:27 each quarreling, arguing, pointing fingers,
22:30 and claiming, "I'm right, you're wrong."
22:34 What happened to the church into the tunnel?
22:39 Why are there so many denominations today?
22:41 You see, the Bible came through unscathed.
22:46 But something happened to the church in the tunnel.
22:49 In fact, Paul predicted a falling away.
22:52 Centuries of compromise with paganism
22:54 into the Christian church infiltrated doctrines
22:57 and rites and practices and teachings,
22:59 Paul or Peter never heard of,
23:01 that suddenly claimed the rank of divine institution.
23:05 And, friend, is it any wonder that God says
23:07 in these last days of human history
23:10 you and I are to get our Bibles and contend earnestly
23:13 for the faith that was once delivered to the saints.
23:17 That is why, ladies and gentlemen,
23:19 these Voice of Prophecy Speaks meetings.
23:22 Horrific changes took place during those Dark Ages.
23:27 There's no more fascinating story
23:29 than the story of the Waldenses
23:31 and the Huguenots and the Albigenses.
23:33 There's a Huguenot church, by the way, down here.
23:35 It's the only one in North America,
23:36 it's in Charleston.
23:37 I went there, and Jeanie and I wept,
23:39 the last Huguenot church in North America.
23:42 These faithful Christian groups,
23:44 who all across Europe, they were the guardians
23:47 of truth and God's word during those terrible Dark Ages
23:50 when God's word was outlawed and suppressed by the church.
23:55 And, folks, let's remember now that was our church.
23:59 Whether you are Protestant
24:00 or Catholic, this was our heritage.
24:02 Did they make tragic mistakes? Yes, just like we do today.
24:06 But it got to the point where no Bibles were allowed.
24:10 If you possessed a Bible or even studied one
24:12 you were persecuted, prosecuted and put to death by the church.
24:17 People were burned at the stake
24:18 because they wanted to translate the Bible
24:20 into the language of the dialects of the people.
24:23 In fact, for 1,200 years the Bible was forbidden.
24:27 It was only heard occasionally in cathedrals
24:29 in a locked foreign language on the weekends.
24:33 Well, this gentleman, Peter Waldo
24:34 happened to have a Bible.
24:37 He was so persecuted and hunted like a wild beast
24:40 that he and his Waldensian followers
24:43 climbed up into the Piedmont valleys of northern Italy.
24:46 But soon it wasn't safe there either.
24:48 And they fled to the Alps, hiding in caves
24:52 and the wilderness for centuries.
24:55 Whole cultures lived and died in those caves
24:58 trying to protect the Bible.
25:01 They felt their heaven-sent mission
25:02 was to make hand-written copies of the Word.
25:05 Printing hadn't been invented yet.
25:07 So they would cautiously send out these little pieces
25:10 of the Bible throughout Europe.
25:12 But they lived in the stone fortresses
25:14 and caves and copied scripture portions
25:16 on parchment sitting on stone tables.
25:18 And they and their families
25:19 would copy just one verse a thousand times,
25:22 maybe in German or French or Italian.
25:25 And then they would send their fine young boys and girls
25:27 down into the valleys to enroll
25:29 as university students, disguised as students.
25:33 But they had sewn into the hems of their garments
25:36 and linings portions of those scriptures.
25:39 If they were caught, they were slain immediately.
25:43 But when they would find an earnest teacher,
25:45 maybe a sincere student who just seemed discouraged
25:48 and bent over, crushed with guilt,
25:51 not knowing what the Bible said about forgiveness,
25:54 they would produce a little passage
25:58 in their own language and the truth would spread.
26:01 If the authorities found the source, they would die.
26:05 Meanwhile, the older folks, the parents,
26:06 they would disguise themselves as peddlers.
26:09 And they'd go down into the valleys
26:10 selling pots and pans and cloth.
26:13 And if they came to a sincere home
26:14 and found someone discouraged
26:16 because of all of their awful sins,
26:18 they would cautiously bring out
26:20 from the folds of their garments a text.
26:23 My friend, the Bible says, "If we confess our sins,
26:27 He is faithful to forgive us
26:29 our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteous."
26:32 They had never heard words like that before.
26:35 My sins? You mean even my sins?
26:38 I can go to the Savior and ask forgiveness?
26:41 And they would produce more scripture
26:43 and read with them into the night,
26:45 have a little rest there, perhaps.
26:46 And in the morning, they would slip away
26:48 before breakfast and off that missionary would go.
26:51 The host would rush outside, you know,
26:52 we didn't even get their name or where she was from.
26:56 They hurried out to the street
26:57 just like other people looking for their missionary.
27:01 And that was the signal
27:02 the authorities were looking for.
27:03 And they found their missionary
27:05 lying in cold blood at the street corner.
27:08 Any library will tell you this story.
27:10 In fact, John Milton, the blind poet of England,
27:13 Latin secretary to Oliver Cromwell,
27:16 John Milton was so stirred
27:18 by the slaughter of the Waldenses
27:20 as late as 1655, that he wrote these words,
27:24 "Avenge, O Lord, thy slaughtered saints,
27:28 Whose bones lie scattered on the Alpine mountains cold.
27:32 E'en them who kept thy truth so pure of old,
27:35 When all our fathers worshiped stocks and stones."
27:40 The great hymn writer of the church at this time,
27:42 Isaac Watts, he composed this hymn, you know it.
27:45 "Am I a soldier of the cross?"
27:49 He wrote about the Waldenses,
27:50 the Huguenots, the Albigenses.
27:52 One of the stanzas goes like this:
27:54 Must I be carried to the skies
27:58 On flowery beds of ease?
28:00 While others fought to win the prize
28:03 And sailed through bloody seas?
28:06 Folks, that's why the founding
28:08 fathers of America fled over here.
28:09 The pilgrims and the Puritans,
28:11 they boarded the Mayflower
28:12 to escape all of that persecution,
28:14 bound for America, land of freedom.
28:16 And America's poets, writing about Plymouth Rock said,
28:19 "I call it holy ground, the spot where first they trod,
28:24 They left unstained what here they found,
28:27 Freedom to worship God."
28:30 Folks, the story of the scriptures
28:31 is just a thriller.
28:35 There came a day in Europe
28:37 when 20,000 troops under French Colonel DePerot
28:41 went up into those mountains to destroy the Waldenses.
28:45 Now you talk about hitting a fly with a hammer.
28:48 He sent 20,000 soldiers to exterminate
28:51 2,000 of the Waldenses,
28:53 boasting to the villagers in the valley,
28:55 "Come to the public hanging of the Waldenses
28:58 and see the end of them tomorrow."
29:01 Well, they started up the mountain.
29:02 But, you know, those Waldenses
29:03 have been living up there for centuries,
29:05 they knew every tree, they knew every boulder.
29:07 They were hiding behind them, watching.
29:08 And when they saw the troops coming up,
29:10 well, they simply dislodged some of those boulders,
29:12 which thundered down the mountain
29:14 and killed some of the soldiers
29:15 and even Colonel DePerot was wounded.
29:18 He begged for refuge in a Waldensian fort.
29:21 They were very kind to give him food and lodging,
29:24 but the rest of them just fled.
29:26 Next day the army moved in for the kill,
29:29 the soldiers moving very cautiously now,
29:31 hiding behind the trees and rocks.
29:34 Got up there and the Waldenses were gone.
29:37 Their caves and their forts were empty.
29:39 They were up in their stocking feet
29:42 on the tops of the mountains, singing Psalm 124:2, 3,
29:46 "If the Lord were not on our side,
29:47 then when men rose up against us,
29:49 we would have been swallowed up quick."
29:51 Amen. Praise the Lord.
29:52 And the soldiers cursed,
29:54 "Heaven itself seems to be blessing these people."
29:59 But tragically it wasn't always so.
30:02 I hope I can share this.
30:07 There came a day when 260 Waldenses
30:11 were in a little cave.
30:13 The soldiers discovered they were inside.
30:17 So they built a fire at the opening of the cave
30:19 and you know what happened.
30:21 It licked up the oxygen, all 260 of them died.
30:26 I hope if I live long enough I get to go to Europe,
30:29 some day I want to go down and crawl into that cave.
30:33 You got to get in on your hands and knees.
30:36 Would the light of truth be entirely extinguished?
30:40 Oh, no.
30:41 There came a day in the seclusion
30:43 of a German library, that a young monk,
30:46 soon to become a priest,
30:47 found a Bible chained to the monastery wall.
30:52 Martin Luther had never even seen a Bible
30:54 even though he was studying for holy orders.
30:56 He'd only heard fragments in Latin.
30:59 Square-jawed, independent Luther,
31:04 he was fascinated with the Bible.
31:06 He came back again and again for months
31:08 and he would study that Bible.
31:10 He didn't find anything about painful pilgrimages
31:13 to holy shrines or indulgences or penance.
31:17 You see, Luther was taught
31:19 that he needed to lie on the ground,
31:22 cold ground and lacerate his back
31:24 to show God how bad he was.
31:26 But he found nothing about that in the Bible.
31:29 But he found a lot about Jesus, he found lot about forgiveness.
31:34 And his favorite text was Romans 1:17,
31:36 "The just shall live by faith."
31:40 And Martin Luther turned to his church
31:42 of his day and he shook civilization
31:44 to its very foundations with the Reformation.
31:47 A new renaissance was coming. The new world.
31:50 In fact, Luther began to translate the Bible
31:52 into German, the language of the people.
31:54 Luther was one of the first Protestants.
31:58 You folks here in Carolina heard about Protestant?
32:01 You say, but, Lonnie, we're a little more cultured,
32:03 we say Protestant.
32:06 Friend, a protestant is simply one who protests
32:09 against any doctrine or practice or teaching
32:12 that's not found in the Bible.
32:15 Luther turned to his church with some big questions,
32:18 expecting to receive appreciation for his research.
32:21 But they said, "Oh, father Martin, no.
32:26 Luther, the church hasn't taught
32:27 this for centuries and we don't intend to.
32:32 Martin, you recant or you'll be excommunicated for heresy."
32:38 What was he to do?
32:40 Let truth die? No.
32:42 I'm so glad that Luther championed truth.
32:45 He stepped out of the church of his day.
32:48 And when Luther died, his followers built a fence
32:51 around what Martin Luther believed
32:53 and they called it a creed.
32:55 You ever hear of creed?
32:58 Now there's nothing wrong with a creed,
33:01 except that it makes no provision for advancing light.
33:04 It locks you in to that century.
33:07 We know that his followers were called Lutherans.
33:11 You ever heard of a Lutheran? Yes.
33:13 But you see, friend,
33:14 the Reformation was only beginning.
33:17 Along came other groups of reformers
33:20 who recovered truths that Luther hadn't even found yet.
33:23 Wycliffe over in England.
33:25 Reformers like John Knox of Scotland.
33:27 John Calvin in Switzerland. Zwingli, Hus, Jerome.
33:30 They came to the leaders
33:31 of the Lutheran reform movement,
33:33 "Look what we found."
33:35 But they were met with the same cold and icy reserve
33:38 "Well, Luther didn't believe this, so we can't accept it."
33:44 What were these reformers to do?
33:46 Let truth die?
33:48 No, they followed Luther's example
33:50 and they stepped out of Lutheranism,
33:53 stepped forward in the light of truth
33:55 and they founded the Presbyterian church.
33:58 And then the Anglicans and the Methodists.
34:00 The Anabaptist reformers, they came along and said,
34:02 "Look, what we've discovered, baptism by immersion."
34:05 And the Baptists were founded.
34:07 Each recovering new rays of light from the word of God.
34:11 Friend, listen, Revelation 12
34:14 tells us the history of the Christian church
34:16 and why there are so many denominations today.
34:19 Folks, God never intended it to be this way.
34:23 Because you see the Reformation isn't finished yet.
34:26 The denominations we have out there today
34:29 are the sad human tendency of dependence upon the past.
34:34 Well, if father and mother believed it,
34:36 it's okay for them,
34:38 I guess it's good enough for me.
34:39 If you ever hear anyone say that, you pray for them.
34:43 That is devastating.
34:45 Now I thank God for my grandfather
34:47 and my mother and my father.
34:50 But God says He expects us to grow,
34:53 to keep following new light, to keep the Reformation alive.
34:57 God wants end-time Christians
34:59 to gather all of the rays of light, truths that were lost
35:03 in the Dark Ages for 1,260 years.
35:06 Jude 1:3 says,
35:08 Lonnie, "You must contend earnestly for the faith
35:11 that was once delivered unto the saints."
35:15 My Christian friend, please listen.
35:18 The Bible says the truth is progressive.
35:21 We need to grow in it, daily move in it,
35:24 daily change, daily progress.
35:26 God does not save us by denominations.
35:30 One of my favorite texts, Proverbs 4:18, says,
35:33 "The path of the just is as the shining light
35:37 that shines more and more unto the perfect day."
35:44 All right, we are ready now for Revelation 12 again.
35:46 Would you look at verse 14 with me?
35:49 Now we're gonna understand some things
35:51 we didn't know before this evening.
35:53 It says, and you can look at this chart, too,
35:55 and see what this text is talking about.
35:57 It says, "But the woman was given
35:59 two wings of a great eagle,
36:01 that she might fly into the wilderness
36:04 to her place, where she is nourished
36:06 for a time and times and half a time,
36:08 from the presence of the serpent."
36:10 Now that's just another way of figuring the 1,260 years,
36:13 a time is a year, times two years,
36:14 half a times 180 days, come out to 1,260, same thing.
36:18 It says, "So the serpent or the dragon
36:20 spewed water out of his mouth like a flood after the woman,
36:23 that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood.
36:26 But the earth helped the woman,
36:29 and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood
36:32 which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth."
36:34 Can you see God hiding the Waldenses there,
36:36 in the earth, in that verse?
36:39 Now here's where you and I come in today in 2003-2004.
36:44 Here's where we come into the picture.
36:46 Read with me verse 17. All together, out loud.
36:51 "And the dragon was enraged at the woman,
36:54 and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring,
36:58 who keep the commandments of God
37:00 and have the testimony of Jesus Christ."
37:04 Who is the dragon? Satan.
37:06 Write that in on your Bible,
37:08 write over that verse so you'll never forget it.
37:12 He's angry with whom? Church.
37:16 The woman or the church.
37:18 Write in church over top of woman there
37:20 so you won't forget this.
37:22 And Satan goes to make war with the rest of her offspring
37:26 or as the King James says the remnant,
37:30 the last end of the church.
37:33 That's us.
37:35 Now let's read with me again that passage
37:37 as interpreted by your own Bible.
37:39 And you want to look on the screen
37:40 because I've kind of adjusted it.
37:42 Here's how it's interpreted. All together.
37:44 "And Satan was angry with the church,
37:48 and he went to make war
37:50 with the last end of her offspring,
37:53 who keep the commandments of God
37:55 and have the testimony of Jesus Christ."
37:57 Can I have your eyes one more time?
38:00 Tell me. Listen carefully.
38:02 In the first part of Chapter 12
38:05 Satan or the dragon was angry
38:07 with which part of the Christian church?
38:12 Which part of the New Testament church
38:14 was he angry with at first?
38:17 The first part, the early church.
38:20 In the last verses we just read
38:22 Satan is angry with what part of the church?
38:25 The last end or the remnant.
38:28 Ladies and gentlemen, Revelation 12
38:31 is the history of the Christian church
38:34 and 80% of this audience tonight,
38:36 I don't care where you're watching me,
38:37 you have never heard this before.
38:40 But I want you to notice.
38:42 Friend, God is so concerned that we get this message
38:44 and recover the truth lost
38:45 in the tunnel of those Dark Ages
38:47 and recover the same faith that went into the tunnel
38:51 that He describes two outstanding features
38:55 of God's true called out people in the very last days.
38:59 He says they keep the commandments of God
39:02 and they have the same faith as Jesus.
39:07 Some people say, "Well, you know,
39:09 if you try to keep the commandments,
39:11 you're not really saved by grace."
39:13 God says, commandment-keeping
39:15 and the faith of Jesus go together.
39:19 'Cause listen, friend,
39:20 if I have enough of the grace of God in my heart,
39:24 I'm not gonna kill you if I don't like you.
39:26 I'm not gonna steal from you.
39:29 I will certainly not take your wife.
39:32 You see, commandment-keeping
39:33 isn't a means of salvation, it's an evidence of salvation.
39:38 And God clearly says here,
39:40 "Lon, My last day called-out ones,
39:43 My people waiting for the second coming of Jesus
39:46 will be keeping the commandments
39:48 and have the testimony of Jesus."
39:50 I want to be part of that group.
39:51 Don't you? Amen.
39:53 You seamstresses who like to sew,
39:59 you go downtown here and you see a 70% off
40:01 remnant sale, yardage at a store.
40:05 And you go, and to your delight,
40:06 you find something that will match
40:07 the garment or moving right along,
40:09 something else, maybe a beautiful piece of cloth,
40:13 lots of accessories you purchased.
40:15 So you buy enough cloth to make a matching blouse.
40:18 And it's blue material.
40:20 Kind of got a pattern on it,
40:22 you can't get rid of the family quick enough after dinner
40:24 so that you can spread out your simplicity pattern
40:27 and you start to stitch and sew.
40:28 But alas, you discover,
40:29 well, you've just got enough cloth,
40:32 except for one sleeve.
40:35 So you hurry back to the store,
40:36 you know it's the last day remnant sale,
40:37 you find the same sales clerk.
40:39 And you even know her.
40:40 And she says, "Oh, I'm so sorry,
40:42 the material is all gone."
40:43 Oh, but she happens to know
40:44 three ladies from your neighborhood
40:46 who came in for that sale and they bought material, too.
40:49 So you know them, so you go to each of them
40:52 and you knock at the first door and you explain your problem.
40:54 "I just need a little bit more material."
40:55 She says, "Sure, I'll be glad to help you,
40:57 I bought plenty of material."
40:58 She brings out her package
40:59 and she opens it, it's the wrong color.
41:03 You bought blue, hers is red.
41:06 Well, you don't disturb her anymore,
41:08 you thank her very much, you hurry to the next address.
41:10 She brings out her material, well, you're kind of happy,
41:13 it's the same pattern but hers is purple.
41:17 Yours was blue. So you try again.
41:20 You go to the third door
41:21 and this lady brings out her material.
41:24 Oh, it's the same pattern,
41:25 the same identical weave, same color.
41:27 In fact, there's even a matching thread,
41:29 you know, where they cut it
41:30 and tore a little bit at the bottom.
41:32 Of what can you be reasonably certain?
41:36 You have found the remnant of the original.
41:41 Now, friend, I want to be saved,
41:45 I want my family to be saved.
41:47 When Jesus forgives my sins,
41:48 I want to walk in all the light of God's truth,
41:51 the prophetic light that shines brighter
41:53 and brighter to the perfect day.
41:55 God says, "Lonnie, Revelation 12 provides
41:58 absolute certain thumbprint identification marks
42:01 to help you find God's truth in these last days,
42:04 identical features to match up exactly
42:07 with the original faith of Jesus.
42:09 You can find My last-end remnant
42:12 of what started way back there in the New Testament.
42:14 Jeremiah 29:13 says, Lon,
42:17 'And you shall seek Me and you shall find Me
42:20 when you search for Me with all your heart.'"
42:23 So you take the Bible,
42:27 the original that went into the tunnel.
42:30 Then you take what you believe.
42:33 If it has the same pattern of belief,
42:36 the same weave of doctrine, the same texture of harmony,
42:39 the same consistency of practice and teaching,
42:43 then, friend, you can know you have found the remnant.
42:49 As you consider your decision for Jesus Christ,
42:52 I want you to take that response card
42:54 as the row captains pass the containers.
42:56 I don't want you to mark anything yet
42:58 but God's word has identified
43:00 God's called out ones in these last end-times.
43:04 Right now I want you to listen to Joey as she sings.
43:12 Why have You chosen me
43:17 Out of millions Your child to be
43:23 You know all the wrongs that I have done
43:30 Oh, how could You pardon me
43:36 Forgive my iniquities
43:40 To save me in Jesus Your Son
43:48 But, Lord, help me be
43:53 What You want me to be
43:58 Your word I will strive to obey
44:06 My life I now give
44:10 For You I will live
44:15 And walk by Your side all the way
44:26 Let us pray together.
44:27 Eternal Father, Jesus tonight has identified for us
44:31 a precious truth through the Voice of Prophecy,
44:36 how to identify present truth out there
44:40 and the importance of being part
44:41 of God's called-out ones.
44:45 We simply take what we believe
44:47 and we measure it up against
44:48 the original blueprint of scripture.
44:51 But, Lord, tonight, then that means
44:53 we must make a choice to keep walking in the light
44:57 that shines brighter and brighter
44:59 to the perfect day.
45:01 So, Father, would You help us just now
45:03 as we make our choice and choose to be
45:07 one of God's called-out ones.
45:10 I want you to take your pencil and your commitment card.
45:14 I'd like to have you choose one of these responses.
45:17 Number one, I hope everyone can understand clearly
45:20 the importance of belonging to a church.
45:23 Check that, if I understand
45:25 the importance of belonging to a church.
45:27 God wants us to take our beliefs,
45:29 He lights the candle of our lives, Revelation says,
45:32 for you to put that on a lamp stand,
45:34 which represents the church.
45:36 Secondly, there may be some tonight
45:38 who haven't yet made a decision to join a church.
45:41 This is so important, I want you to consider carefully.
45:44 I would like to belong to God's called-out ones.
45:49 Check number two if that's your decision tonight.
45:52 And I hope many individuals
45:53 who haven't taken the step of baptism
45:55 will now see how that is so important.
45:57 And you'll check number three, I want to be baptized.
45:59 Make your decision just now as Joey sings.
46:07 I am amazed to know
46:11 That a God so great could love me so
46:17 Is willing and wanting to bless
46:25 His grace is so wonderful
46:29 His mercy so bountiful
46:34 I can't understand it, I confess
46:42 But, Lord, help me be
46:46 What You want me to be
46:51 Your word I will strive to obey
46:59 My life I now give
47:03 For You I will live
47:09 And walk by Your side all the way
47:19 My life I now give
47:23 For You I will live
47:29 And walk by Your side all the way
47:44 Father, we thank you for the message
47:45 of that song that touches our hearts.
47:48 We want to walk by Your side all the way.
47:52 Give us the courage and the will
47:54 to follow our convictions.
47:57 Because it's not just enough to talk about religion,
48:00 Jesus wants us to put it into practice,
48:02 to do, to follow, to obey.
48:05 Bless every heart who listens tonight
48:06 and as we make our choice, seal it for eternity.
48:10 In Jesus' name. Amen.
48:14 I want you to be sure now
48:15 that you place your response card
48:18 in that container as it comes down the row.
48:22 Tomorrow night, "The Great Pretender."
48:26 Friend, do not miss tomorrow night's meeting.
48:29 It will be one of the most revealing sessions
48:32 you will have ever heard.
48:33 Tomorrow night, "The Great Pretender."
48:35 By the way, last night, I went onto our chat room
48:39 and I found 235 of you waiting for me there,
48:42 I couldn't answer all of the questions,
48:43 but it was fun to be talking with you up until midnight.
48:45 I'll be on the chat room tonight again.
48:47 If you have a computer just dial in,
48:50 And I'll be there
48:51 from 10 o' clock on till whenever.
48:54 But we have some special materials
48:56 for you tonight at the downlink sites.
48:58 This special pamphlet produced by Pacific Press,
49:02 we so much appreciate signs of the times.
49:04 "What the Bible says about God's church."
49:06 Be sure to get your copy as you leave.
49:08 Tomorrow night, "The Great Pretender."
49:10 Over in the hospitality centers tonight
49:12 our host and hostesses would be
49:14 so pleased to greet you.
49:15 I'll spend just a few minutes in ours
49:17 because I got to get away and get on that chat room.
49:19 Remember, friend, as we go, God really does love you.
49:26 Amen. Goodnight.