Category Archives: Teaching

JESUS IS THE TRUE VINE – ISRAEL

John 15:1-7 KJV:

“1I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. 2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every [branch] that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. 3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. 5 I am the vine, ye [are] the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. 6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast [them] into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.”

For those who heard Him speak these words, the context was found in Isaiah 5:7:

Isa 5:7 KJV – 7 For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts [is] the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.

For more of the context read Isaiah chapter 5. Back in Isaiah’s time, Israel had become so corrupt that God was required to fulfill His covenant promises of dispersion and destruction.  For those who knew these Scriptures and the history of Israel, they knew that the prophesies of Isaiah 5 were fulfilled when the king of Assyria invaded and conquered the ten-tribe nation called ‘Israel’ in about 722-3 BC. Many were slain; many others taken captive and were settled in Assyria; while many of the Assyrians were transferred to the land previously occupied by the ten-tribe nation of ‘Israel,’ later known as ‘Samaria.’ This resulted in a mixture of the races which in New Testament times, the Jews called ‘Samaritans,’ not recognizing them as Israelites, but rather considering them gentile dogs.

Jesus was reminding His audience of what happened to the Israel of old when they turned away from God in flagrant disobedience when He said:

“If a man abide not in Me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them and cast them into the fire, and they are burned,” John 15:6.

 Tragically, multitudes of them refused to believe His warning and so men cast them into the fires of death, dispersion and destruction in 70 AD when Jerusalem was captured by the Roman armies. Millions were killed; almost another million were taken to Rome and sold as slaves, while millions more were dispersed throughout the world.

But for those who believed and heeded the words of Jesus; they were spared as a group and became the Church, the Body of Christ, the True Vine and went throughout the known world of that era, preaching and teaching the Kingdom of God in Christ.

Tests of a True Prophet

In Ezekiel’s day, false prophecy was such a problem that the Lord made another rule: The prophet should be proven in his own generation:

“And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, ‘Son of man, what is that proverb that ye have in the land of Israel, saying, “the Days are prolonged, and every vision faileth?” Tell them therefore, ‘Thus saith the Lord God; “I will make this proverb to cease, and they shall no more use it as a proverb in Israel:” but say unto them, ‘The days are at hand, and the effect of every vision. For there shall be no more any vain vision nor flattering divination within the house of Israel. For I am the Lord: I will speak, and the word that I shall speak shall come to pass; it shall be no more prolonged: for in your days, O rebellious house, will I say the word, and will perform it, saith the Lord God.'”

“Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, ‘Son of man, behold, they of the house of Israel say, “The vision that he seeth is for many days to come, and he prophesieth of the times that are far off.” Therefore say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord God; “There shall none of my words be prolonged any more, but the word which I have spoken shall be done, saith the Lord God,'” (Ezekiel 12:21-28).

Christ Submitted To These Tests

Jesus prophesied of the destruction of Jerusalem and the wrath of God upon the Jewish nation, Matthew chapters 23 and 24; Mark 13. Christ was willing to submit to this test of a true prophet for He declared that all these prophecies should be fulfilled “in this generation,” (Matthew 24:34; Mark 13:30). If “these things” had not happened in that generation, Christ would have been proven a false prophet. But they did happen. Jerusalem fell in 70 AD; Christ was proven to be a true Prophet, and therefore the Son of God, and the promised Messiah.

 

THE NAME OF GOD

 

What is meant by the phrase “The Name of God?” Exodus 20:7 says: “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His Name in vain.”

The Name of God means at least these three things:

(1) His Authority: to act in someone’s name is to act in his authority, as in Esther 8:8, where the king gave Esther and Mordecai permission to write in his name, that is, with his authority.

(2) His Character: One’s “name” also represents his character, as in the saying: “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches,” Proverbs 22:1.

(3) His Identity: One’s name is used as a surname or distinguishing name in general, his parentage, who he is, as in Exodus 3:14-15.

(1) NAME OF GOD AS AUTHORITY

The Authority of God is infinite: He has all power in heaven and earth; He is omnipotent.

He is the Creator: Elohim, Genesis chapters 1 and 2.

He is the Lord of Hosts, Isaiah 47:4: “Our Redeemer – the Lord of Hosts is His Name.” These Hosts, Sabaoth, includes all military powers, human as well as angelic; also the heavenly hosts of the sun, moon and stars; and the hosts of all created things such as frogs, flies and locusts, Psalm 104:30-34. The word Sabaoth is also used in the New Testament, Romans 9:29, quoting Isaiah 13:19 and in James 5:4.

Jesus delegated the authority to act in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost to His disciples in Matthew 28:18-20. To act in God’s Name is to act in the power of His authority.

(2) NAME OF GOD AS CHARACTER

The Name of God represents His character. What is His character?

God is Holy: Leviticus 19:2: “Say to the congregation of the people of Israel, You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy.”

I Peter 1:14-16: “As obedient children do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, (15) but as He Who has called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct, (16) since it is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I Am holy.’”

To act in God’s Name, we must act in His holiness. Holiness is purity. No impure motives nor actions can be done in the Name of our Holy God.

God is Unity: Deuteronomy 6:4: “Hear O Israel the Lord our God is One Lord.” He calls us to unity of body, soul and spirit in Jesus.  To act in the Name of God, we must be whole-hearted, not divided within ourselves, not double-minded.

Mark 12:29-30: “Jesus answered, ‘The first [commandment] is “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one; and you shall love the Lord your God with all you heart and with all your soul and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’”

(3) NAME OF GOD AS IDENTITY

God identified Himself by the name Jahweh, transliterated in English as Jehovah  “The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob,” Exodus 3:15. He also identified Himself by many compound names:

Jehovah-Jireh, “The Lord will provide,” Genesis 22:14.

Jehovah-Raphaka, “The Lord that healeth thee,” Exodus 15:26.

Jehovah-Nissi, “The Lord our banner,” Exodus 17: 14-15; that is: the center and power of our cause.

Jehovah-Shalom, “The Lord is our Peace,” Judges 6:24.

Jehovah-Roi, “The Lord is my Shepherd,” Psalm 23.

Jehovah-Tsidkenu, “The Lord, our Righteousness,” Jeremiah 23:6.

Jehovah-Shammah, “Jehovah is present,” Ezekiel 48:35.

Jehovah-Sabaoth, “The Lord of Hosts,” Isaiah 1:9 and many other references.

New Testament Names:

Our Lord Jesus Christ has in His very person all of the attributes of these names, and is the manifestation in the flesh of all of the names of God in the Old Testament. Some New Testament mentions of His Name:

Jesus, Matthew 1:21: Messiah, Savior, Deliverer.

Emmanuel, Matthew 1:23: “God with us,” quoting Isaiah 7:14, 8:8.

Elohim, John 1:1-2: The Creator, Genesis 1 and 2.

Adonai, John 13:13; Rev. 19:16: Lord and Master, sovereign Lord, King of Kings, Deuteronomy 10:17.

El-Shaddai, Matthew 28:18-20; Ephesians 3:20: All-sufficient One, Genesis 17:1.

El-Elyon, Luke 1:32, 35: Son of the Most High; Psalm 7:17.

El-Olam, Hebrews 13:8: The same yesterday, today and forever:  Genesis 21:35.

The NAME of Jesus: Authority, Character, Identity

“(9) Wherefore God hath highly exalted Him [Christ Jesus] and given Him a name which is above every name: (10) That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth: (11) And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father,” Philippians 2:9-11.

REPENT

Repentance is the only cure for our nation.

Repent of what? Rebellion.

The root of all sin is rebellion against God. Rebellion brings the curses that God has already pronounced against sin. God’s promises of blessings are to the obedient. God chose Abraham and his seed because He knew that Abraham would teach his children obedience to God’s Holy Covenant. Those descendants of Abraham that rebelled against God were “cut off” from being a people.

The Great Rebellion

The US of A, as a nation, experienced the Great Rebellion in the post WWII era. It led on into the present state of abortion, homosexuality, adultery and fornication, resulting in perpetual wars, plagues of disease, fire, floods, storms, famine and death. By rebellion against God, we are destroying ourselves!

The Great Awakening

How to stop the plagues? Repent!

What is ‘repentance’? It is making a full acknowledgement of our sin, a complete and total sacrifice of ourselves by surrender to God’s will. It is described Biblically as crucifixion of The Flesh and rebirth by the power of the Holy Spirit. I Corinthians 15:34: “Awake to righteousness and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak to your shame.” Multitudes in this US of A, with all of its Churches and religious rituals, do not even know That God requires REPENTANCE.

You Are What You Think

“You are what you eat.” This cliché sounds simple enough, but actually is very true of our physical bodies. But Solomon, one of the wisest of men, said that as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he, (Proverbs 23:7). We are, spiritually, what we think in our hearts. This is profoundly true of our moral and spiritual life. It is, therefore, of the utmost importance that we not allow evil thoughts to sicken and destroy our spiritual life, personal or national.

The daily newscasts are now exposing the prevalence of the violent and lustful nature of men in high positions, who are otherwise thought to be of sterling character. This is the direct result of the prevalence of lustful media, and entertainment that has dominated our culture in recent generations, not to mention the availability of pornography. Their minds have been filled with it and so they have become what they have allowed in their minds.

The Tsunami

This evil flood has come to prominence under the guise of “freedom of speech” but is actually the invasion of wicked and profane babblings into our homes, schools, and even some ‘churches.’ The Church, the Body of Christ, must rise up in the Holy Spirit to stop this tsunami of evil and to reclaim the powers of the air for Christ and His Kingdom!  The violence, crimes, and all manner of evil come from that which is put into the minds of the people.

Healthy Thoughts

We cannot allow the powers of darkness to poison the airwaves and hence the minds of the people with vile and ungodly thoughts. We can and must control what we allow our minds and those of our children to dwell on. Philippians 4:8: “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

Is It Impossible?

If we can control the purity of the food and drugs which are allowed in this nation, can we not also control the poison of immorality of every kind that is allowed on the airwaves and streets of our nation? Yes and no. This can only be done through the power of the Holy Spirit of God working through a holy people united in His Divine Body. It must be done – it is a matter of Life or Death.