THE GREATEST SPECTACLE OF THE AGES
THE LAST ENEMY DESTROYEDMaurice Johnson
September 30, 1956
Many times I hear from other people about what a dangerous fellow, for instance, I am. And then sometimes say, "Well have you told him?" "Wouldn't do any good, wouldn't do any good. Wouldn't do any good, others have tried it." "Who?" "Well ..."
(Wilbur Johnson from audience) Better man than I am.
(Wilbur Johnson from audience) Better man than I am.
Yeah, a "Better man than I am", and so forth. Well I thank God that I know it does good to contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints. It does good when we do it because we love the Lord Jesus, see.
I was interested in everything he said, but one thing I want to comment on, among other things, he said since he's been saved a little more than two years ago, he's been to the Pentecostal group, the Nazarene, the Youth For Christ with its interdenominational front, and Westmont College, and Bible Institute, et cetera, et cetera. Then, and you thought you were more or less right in each of those times, so that proves you can't be right now, because if you thought you were right then and changed, maybe you're going to be changed now, maybe you're going to change tomorrow.
I remember very well when Ike Sidebottom in Ft Worth threw that at me. He said, "Maurice, I knew you when you were just as sincere as you are now in believing you were right in trying to clean up the Methodists. But you've changed, and now you think we're wrong on," something we taught back then, "and ... but ... maybe you'll change tomorrow." Well that's a subtle argument, and it appeals very much to an escaped convict, because it encourages him to believe that it's all right to be uncertain, see. And that's the condition that's prophesied for the last days, "Ever learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth." Now that line of argument will equip anybody that is a coward and that doesn't really believe anything in the Word of God. What will that line of argument do with somebody who ... with Adair Grove who used to want liquor and didn't love the Lord? "Oh I used to really go at that bottle with sincerity." You went to it [?] didn't you Adair?
(Adair Grove from audience) I went to it with assurity.
He went to it with assurity, and with certainty, and he thought it was good for him, at least it was at the time and all. He did it, got it. But he doesn't think so now. Well, you were sincere then, and you're sincere now. But maybe you'll be sincere in going back to it tomorrow.
You see, all that that line of argument is on the presumption and the basis that the Spirit of God won't teach you ... had I investigated earlier ... brother Ross, if you had admonished me, you're partly to blame see, cause you're older than l am, and if you had admonished me when I first met you down at Bob Shuler's, if you'd said, "What makes you think you're right here being a Methodist? Have you obeyed the divine command I Thessalonians 5, "Prove all things"?" Just suppose he'd a done that down there instead of waiting till he and I both, or Nels Thompson asked that question to both of us and others in the audience, Mrs. Ross and my wife and some others, and press it. Well anyway, I hadn't proved, I hadn't checked up for myself. I was born physically a Methodist, virtually, my mother a Methodist. And there are many things that I didn't check up on. But when I had checked up with some godly honesty and humility, what does the Spirit of God do at a time like that? The Spirit of God teaches us, He wants to teach us. And won't He teach us when we're teachable? Why of course. I want to never be unwilling to acknowledge where I was wrong. But that doesn't mean because I was wrong at a distant yesterday on a doctrine, I can't be right today I Don't you see? God help us to be careful there.
Anybody else want to say something before we get away from it? Think about it a little first. I Timothy 3. And the purpose of my message this morning, "Fathers Versus Sunday School Teachers", was what? Was to honor God, and next honor fathers and mothers in the home. That was my purpose. That was my effort. To help homes in this day of increasing, wild delinquency and terrible fierceness, ferocity on the part of boys and girls, and so forth. Just want to help. And I'm a dangerous fellow, dangerous fellow.
(comment from audience)
Every Christian believes the truth. The new nature of every Christian resents, often without understanding it, our conscious minds, we resent things that are contrary to God's Word. Just like a baby won't ... won't take and digest unwholesome milk. Its little tummy will get all worked up and so forth. It doesn't know why up here, but it says we can't use it down here. Yes?
(comment from audience)
I'm glad you gave that exhortation. May ! just say here. It makes a difference whether we pray or not, when we pray in the name of the Lord. It makes a difference whether we pray one for another or not. It makes a difference when I make a tape recording this week God willing for KGER, it'll make a difference whether you been praying for me. You believe "the effectual, fervent prayer of a righteousness man availeth much"? You could change my thought under God; God wants us to work that way. I'm sometimes ... I start to give a message and don't give the same message I planned on giving at all. Now it could be because I'm carnet sometimes. God forbid that, but it could be. There are other times that maybe when I'm carnal to start with, and God answers your prayers, and I give ... prepare a message and give a message that's just way ahead of my pros... condition at that time. Maybe it's in answer to your prayers. Think of it. The prayers of all Christians ...
You know that's one wonderful thing about being in the work of the Lord. To know that every Christian that prays in the Spirit anywhere in the world is praying for all Christians. Because the Holy Spirit is. And when I pray in the Spirit, I'm praying for the glory of the Lord and the work of the Lord. Well that means I'm praying for everything that Billy Graham does to spite of his Baptist membership and his interdenominational pussy-footin', I'm praying for every effort being put forth by Balaam's donkeys and anybody else to get glory to Christ when I pray in the Spirit. Do you believe that? In other words, we are working together with God when we're walking in the Spirit. That means we don't ... doesn't get excluded that God's doing.
That's why when we think of those things it lifts us out of a sense of smallness. Say, "How many people are at your meeting? Two, four, six, eight, huh! And Billy Graham has how many? Well Youth For Christ has how many? Now how many ... how many are at the meetings you're gain' to now, Allen? You'll fall into fanaticism and narrow bigotry and everybody's wrong and going to heel but that Little handful of people there, and you're with them now." Say, '•W91! who says that? I never hear them say that. I never hear them say everybody's going to hell but the people that dot the is and cross the is and dot do this. I hear them down there say that we believe every saved soul, regardless of a degree of spirituality, every saved soul is one with them in Christ." Yeah. And that all Christians, whenever we walk in the Spirit, we're walking in the Spirit. Not two Spirits, but the Spirit.
I John the 3rd chapter. Started to say brother Rapp more than one time, and sister Rapp and the Gruensteins up in Wasco (used to be Wasco), in Arroyo Grande, have said especially months ago before I had discussions with Dickson. He pre... immediately precedes me on the radio at Delano and over, more than ... oh, I don't know how many times, they say, "You know it's just you just must have heard what Dickson gave before, because you followed him, you took up the same scriptures. It was just marvelous. The Lord certainly ..." Well the Lord's capable of doing that. And the reason it doesn't happen more often is because I'm not where He can use me, and other Christians not praying for me like they should maybe. Not that the Lord would always have me follow what the preceding preacher gave. But sometimes it's just wonderful. And that's because of I made the tape you know days before Dickson spoke. Made the recording and sent it up there. Do we believe that the Lord wants to do things that only He can do through His yielded people.
Peter ... I Timothy the 3rd chapter, begin at the ... the 14th verse. I would tike to read more of the first part of that chapter, but I want to get into something else. Those about the elders and deacons. The 14th verse,
These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly,
I Timothy the 3rd chapter 15th verse,
But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth. And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness.
Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh.
The Modernists with a very subtle change of words say that Jesus Christ was manifested God. But that's not what the words of divine inspiration say. That God was manifest in flesh, not manifested by, see. But it ... in other words, Jesus of Nazareth was God in human form. They shaft call that baby's name, "Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us", God with us.. Now it's true that in His service as the Son of man He often declared the Father, He came not to speak of Himself but to declare the Father. But He was God manifest in flesh.
He didn't live always ... as I brought out in the temp... after His temptation in the wilderness, the devil tempted Him to prove that He was the Son of God. And that wasn't what He was: there to prove. He was there to prove that the first man (if I may ... I don't think I'm giving above what is written at all), He was there to prove that the first man, when he was tempted to eat forbidden fruit, that the first man wouldn't have been deceived by the devil had he bowed before the Word of God. In that case of course it wasn’t a lot of written word, but it was what God had said to Adam and Eve. And by rejecting what God said, Adam and Eve were wide open for the devil's temptation. And so when the second man met the devil, He met him as the second man. And when the devil said, 'Now if you're the Son of God, why turn that stone into bread. You're hungry, turn that stone into bread." And Christ didn't say, "It's written, The Son of God shall not live by bread alone." But He said, 'fit's written, the man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."
And so, ad that dime, and in many other cases of Christ's earthly life, He did nod function as God in human form. Often ... for instance when He said, and the so -called "Jehovah's Witnesses" misuse this very cleverly with people who don't read and study for themselves, they say, "Why Jesus Himself said, "I of My ownself can do nothing." There you are..." Of course, that proves too much the way they argue. Say, "Well then you mean to say that you believe that He was the weakest man that ever lived and learned? Cause He said He couldn't do a thing." "Well, no." So in other words., id's just quibbling and false teaching.
Now what does that mean when He said, "I of Myself can do nothing." And what did He mean when He said, "My Father is greater than I"? Well He was bringing out some aspects of His ministry on earth. So when He spoke that way, He wasn't speaking as "I and the Father are one. He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father." He wasn't functioning at that particular time as "I am the light of the world", "I am the bread of life", "Before Abraham was I am". He was taking His place as the Son of man. He was denying Himself. Bud now back do this.
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit.
Well thank God you and I can be justified the same way in our Christian life day by day. Now His flesh was sinless bud He wasn't justified in His own strength as the second man, the Son of man. He was justified by depending upon the Word of God and the Spirit. Think of it. The Lord Jesus. yielded do the Holy Spirit. The Lord Jesus yielded to the Word, the inspired written word of the Old Testament. Just as surely as He was born according do prophecy, and born of a virgin according to prophecy, and born in Bethlehem according do prophecy, and lived for 30 years under the law in perfect obedience do the inspired Word, the Old Testament law and so-forth, and died for our sins according to the Scriptures, was buried, and rose again to the third day according do the Scriptures. Thank God, He submitted Himself do the Word.
You've heard me, many of you, bring that out as do me one of the most marvelous truths ... well id's just number one proof that the Old Testament Scriptures are God breathed. And that a ... that the Roman Catholic position is wrong. In other words, the Lord Jesus didn't come in His birth and earthly life before the resurrection of the Holy ... coming of the Holy Spirit, He didn't come do start something new. He didn't come do start something new. But now back.
Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels,
Now I said my subject tonight over the radio was "The Greatest Spectacle of the Ages", "The Greatest Spectacle of the Ages". God manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. Now I'm sure that the immediate interpretation of this is what I've already been bringing out: Jesus Christ, coming do earth. Philippians 2 gives the same truth in different tang... in other words, He who was in the form of God thought it nod robbery do be equal with God, but emptied Himself, came down, and found in fashion as a man, and even then humbled Himself, made Himself as a man of no reputation. Oh you know, whenever I read that and then think of these Reverends and Doctors and bowfin' and scraping and my wanting some honor, taking compliments when people give them to me. Say, "Oh God, help me do remember Philippians 2. Jesus ...
"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God",
not a ... He didn't think it a thing to be grasped after; He didn't have to reach up to be equal with God."
Oh I like to go back ... remember that the devil first tempted man to try to reach to get up higher than the God ordained position, the God created position that Eve had. The devil said, "Don't you want to get higher 'n that? Why if you just reach up there", I'm putting in my words now, "you just reach up there and get that forbidden fruit, and you know what'll be the result? You'll be equal with God". And she reached up and fell down, and dragged the whole human family, her husband, and then all the human family in his loins, dragged them down, down, down, to where ... you know where?! To Calvary's accursed tree.
But instead of the human Adam and Eve and their family going there, a second man appeared. Without controversy great is that mystery. In the fullness of time God sent forth His own son, born ... made of a woman, made under the law, made in the likeness of sinful flesh, and He lived as a quiet law-keeping Jew fulfilling every jot and tittle of it.
Think of Him going around for 30 years on earth and never healing a sick person. Don't you know His heart yearned. Don't you know that little boy Jesus would have loved to perform some miracles. Why we get a little glimpse, God just drew the curtain aside and He showed us just a little glimpse of Him when He was 12 years old. He reminds me of your 12 year old boy in your schooling, he's so different. (laughs) He was there talking with the teachers, the Jewish Leaders, and His questions, His knowledge, confounded them, you remember. His mother, that goddess, not the goddess Mary, but the one that the Roman Catholics want to deify... and her husband had gone home you know after the Passover. And I guess Mary got so busy talking about her anxious to get back to straighten up the house or something, that she did tike other mothers, she just forgot her 12 year old boy. I sure like to bring that out to Roman Catholics because it just causes me to know that Mary was just like other mothers. Mary even forgot the 12 old boy. Three days later you know she and Joseph found Him. And they got after Him, they rebuked Him. Mary was a little excited you know, she forgot to be a goddess all of a sudden. And Joseph, and they kind of got after Him, and He said, "Wist ye not that I must be about My Father's business?" as a 12 year old boy. Oh no, that was God manifest in the flesh, the Son of God. And yet He ... yet we're told He went home with them and was subject to them. He went home and was subject to them. Imagine Him who was 12 years old, and of coarse He could as the year along, but imagine Him who was 12 years old confounded the doctors of the law there in the temple. And here are his excited, nervous, ... His mother and legal father coming back, "0h we found him, son. What are you doing here? Why we were look..." "Wist ye not I must be about My ..." He turn... He walked home with them, and was subject to them for years, and He grew in stature and in favor.
"Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness." That's a greatest mystery. Who can comprehend that mystery? We ought to think about it more. We ought to marvel more. We ought to go through that picture gallery and side picture gallery and look at that little Baby and look at that little Boy,' what little glimpse we have of it, and then the perfect Man. We ought to marvel, we ought to marvel when we hear these days talk about power, power, power, "Put your hand over the radio and I have the power, I've got the gift of prayer, and in the name of the all powerful Jesus, the name that the devil hates, I command' all you demons to come out ... [?] out of all the sick and all the afflicted and all the blind and all, I command them out, and all that have evil habits, I command you dirty demons", Oral Roberts says, and O.L. Jaggers says, and A.A. Allen says and Jack ... what's his name ... says, and the various ones up here say.
Mr. Fritzen by the way, were having a big meeting in Glendale aren't you, whose the ... what's the name of the fellow preaching in the tent in Glendale?
(answer from audience)
Or Brooks, Pierce Brooks. Fritzen said to me a few weeks ago, several weeks ago now, he said, "Say, do you know a radio preacher by the,... one of these healing preachers by the name of Brooks?" I said, "Yes, I heard him on Mexican station the other day from the ..." "radio directors, owners-periodical, something for the radio trade ... he said, "it's an account that he has just bought out, the Burbank station, I think it's $500,000 cold cash, and he's listed in Dunn and Bradstreet, $4,000,000 I think it is, $3- or $4,000,000, his own". And you should hear him plug for money. Brother Ross I think you ought to give him some money now, go over to the tent in Glendale and give him some money. (laughs) Yes sir. But now he talks about the power, they all talk about ... the mighty power of God: you'll be healed of an ingrown toenail.
Well did you ever think about the power. (I've touched this some, I've done it several times lately when live spoken on healing different places.) Did you ever think of the power that the Lord Jesus had when He was 20 years of age and walked by the bruised and the broken and the suffering and the dying and the starving: the power to wait, the power to wait. It wasn't His time. It isn't His time to set the world straight! It isn't His time now to put all the hypocrites and the liars and the fakes and the frauds where they belong. But He proved He could do it.
That's what John Owen was so sickeningly blinded to. And as I brought out a good many times, and it's one of the most outstanding cases that I know of in all my ministry, where a fellow's act proved his doctrine. He certainly has proved with a chain of evidence that in his own personal life Christ has not conquered. He's a miserable, pitiful, tragic, defeated, fly off the handle and rage, and admit, "Well I suspect that you were too". And how I thank God that I was made to search my heart and search the Word of God prayerfully in some respects it seems to me as never before, to say, "Oh God, do I right now in my own life know that Jesus Christ has conquered the last enemy?!" "He's conquered my enemy! He's making me more than conqueror. I know that he's conquered the last enemy, see. In other words, I don't want to preach something that I don't ... that hasn't first preached to me, see. I don't want to contend for Christ ... for being complete in Christ if I'm whining and whimpering and defeated because of being so incomplete. Because you’re not treating me right, Ron. "Thank God, I'm complete in Christ, glory to God, but I declare he just gets after me."" Imagine that sort of chatter. Oh, let's exemplify the fact that we know that Jesus Christ, God manifest in the flesh.
But think again of the power that enables the young man Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, to walk by a funeral when He could have stopped and said, "Come forth". A broken-hearted mother. Why did He do its? Why is He doing it now? I mean, why is He now waiting? Men, infidels, cry out ...
And by the way, by the way, we are living in horrible times. I’m thinking immediately now of the latest spiritist series of articles that some of these papers, syndicates, are carrying, message from the dead. What's the heading of it? And it's, going to revive spiritism, and people ... of all ... almost all kinds of walks of life are saying you know ... just like the reports now, that little station up in San Luis Obispo, I saw it quoted in the Dispatch and it was in this paper, that the little ... I forget which station of the two in San Luis Obispo is going to go off the air in a few days at 10:00 at night for 30 minutes to see if Mars, the message from Mars, that somebody else has heard from some these saucers, men in saucers, that Mars is going to tell us and I think some other outer space are going to tell us something you know and ... how that they are a higher civilization on those planets are deeply concerned about us down here.
Now I'm giving that to tell fairy tales. I'm giving that my friend to try to remind you that the Word of God tells us in the last days there'll be signs ... Satan is coming with all power and signs and lying wonders. And the only way you and I are going to be splendidly free from that is to be splendidly right! We can't fail to be poisoned more like ... "Well after all", "I don't know", and "What do you think?" and "Did you ... ?" and waste time and be troubled, instead of saying, "Oh thank God! We see that with the searchlight of God's Word we know that these things are coming. We were told ahead of time, we're prepared for it, see.
But really, it's amazing. I was thinking in preparing a message last week on "Fathers Versus Sunday School Teachers", and brought a word home, and all of a sudden l thought again, I would thought about a long time ago because I saw it in an old message I gave in 1938 over KGER on "Fathers Versus Sunday School Teachers", that when the boys today, some wayward boy or girl out in the world, gone, hear somebody sing, "Come home, come home". "Home, the place where I used to be? Hah!" And to try to make ... how many boys and girls today would really be attracted by using that expression in connection ... in comparing to heaven?
(sings) I wandered far away from God, Now I'm coming home.
Coming home, coming home. What for? To television and mad scramble. What does home mean today, your place? What do your boys and girls think of when the word 'home' comes? Do they first think of a godly father and a godly mother? What do they think of? Don't forget about that, just think about it.
And that word 'father'. It’s thinking about that when I quoted that passage in Proverbs the 1st chapter, 'fathers'. And, an expression, "Like as a father pitieth his children". A father pitying his children: what father? What father pities his children? When you read a scripture like that, everyone of us fathers ought to stop and say, "Oh, God, what fathers were You having David talk about?" I expect his father Jesse. "Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord," see. Why that word 'father' and the word 'mother', "I've nursed you like a mother ... father ..." what is it? "father cherishes his children," and ... well anyway, all of those words, 'father', 'mother', 'home'. But that's not my subject tonight.
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
Now, I'll quote that some more maybe, but turn to I John 3, I John 3. I John 3:8,
He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was, manifested,
not is going to be in His second coming,
For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
Now don't forget how I brought out in Wilbur's backyard that, when I gave that study with the chart hanging up there, gave that study on Christ's works past work, that I brought out that those who deny the Bible doctrine concerning Christ's past work in destroying the devil that had the power of death and de- straying the works of the devil and destroying death, cannot logically keep from going to Universalism. Because if destroy, destroying death, means to render death out of existence, then of course it does! And when death is destroyed, if it's true that destroy means 'render out of existence', 'annihilated', when death is destroyed then there won't be any death. And you can't stop short of it, logically at all. You can get hot under the collar and make false accusations. about "no love" and all, but you can't stop short of it, you see. But if you let the Bible tell you what God means by the word 'destroy', "Christ was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil", "Christ was manifested", this is after He's gone back to the glory, "He was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil". "And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh." Why?! "To destroy the works of the devil" we just read. That's one of the purposes given here.
Well did He do what He came to do? Did He stop short? If He came for that purpose, did He stop short? If He did, He was a defected person see If we hadn't been told that He came and took upon Himself a form of flesh and blood like unto His brethren that He through death, that He through death might destroy him that had the power of death, if we weren't told that so plainly and so unequivocally in Hebrews 2 that Christ took not upon Himself a nature like angels but He took upon Himself a nature like unto His- brethren, flesh and blood, that He through death, in flesh and blood, that He through death might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the devil. Well did He do what He expressly came to do? If He didn't, He went back to heaven defeated! And when the Father set Him at His right hand, the Father was joining in a miserable, dead-end street program. It's a horrible thing my friend to fail to follow this thing through with joy. I'm ashamed that I didn't check up on this more carefully years ago. Yes?
(Adair Grove from audience) Would you make reference to 21:4 in his ...
... Fine. Revelation 21:4, where there'll be no more death. That's it, isn't it?
(Adair Grove from audience) Yes.
There'll be no mare death. If that means there'll be no more death anywhere, everywhere, then it means it. Now we must be willing to let the truth lead us where the truth leads, see. But other scriptures make it utterly impossible In the very same immediate context we find the second death, the second death. So we have to recognize then that there's a certain sphere, there's a particular realm in which they'll be no more death, see. There's a certain realm where they'll be no more death. Not in the lake of fire because that's going to be without end forever and forever. "The smoke of their torment shall ascend up forever and forever, and they'll have no rest day nor night forever", we're told in the Word of God. That of course is utterly staggering to a thoughtful, sober, meditative person. And it should be, and we can meditate on it more to where we will pity with God's given pity the poor, stupid, blind fools that are trampling the blood of Christ under their feet and going on.
They'll be no more death. Where? When Christ, when Christ assumes His position on earth and the knowledge of the lord covers the earth as the waters cover the sea, and does away and puts the devil in the lake of fire, the false prophet will already have been put there in the day of the Lord, the beginning of the millennium, and the devil that'll be used to deceive at the close, he will have been bound and put in the pit for a thousand years and let loose for a little season and allowed to try to deceive the nations and he'll get some of them after him and then the Lord will destroy him, put him in a pit, and ... in the lake of fire, and where the beast and false prophet are, and then the Lord says., "There'll be no more death, all tears will be wiped away". Where?! With the devil, and the beast, and the false prophet, and all of those that had the mark of the beast in their right hand or forehead and were cast in the lake of fire and all liars and unbelievers and whoremongers and sorcerers will have their part in the lake which burns with fire: they'd have tears. They'll have weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. They'll be in the second death.
Well for whom is it then that there'll be no more death? You see, if it means that there'll be no more death as John Owen was arguing, he says, "I believe," I didn't intend to take up this particular thing tonight, but I was. going to take up of course and planned this quite a long time ago, God willing for this morning I thought, ... and changed tonight, on that matter of the great controversy... the mystery, and the spectacle of all the ages. But now back again.
I wish I had my chart up here now. John Owen said, "I believe that I Corinthians 15 refers to death being destroyed so far as the Christians are concerned". He said, "I believe that that means that the death for the Christians is destroyed potential now, and when Christ comes back to begin His reign". Let my hymnbook here represent the Millennium. John Owen said, "I believe that when Christ comes in the clouds to catch away the Christians that are living, first raised the bodies of the Christian dead, that they'll all be clothed with immortality and that will be the last phase of death being destroyed before Christ comes back to reign", see.
Remember that his contention was that that expression "He must reign till He put down all enemies" means a future reign. And I tried to help him see what hopeless contradiction he was in. I said, now watch, "If that passage, that reign referred to… there is a future reign, then it is". Now watch. Here's the cross, in between is the present dispensation, tribulation along in here, and this is the Millennium. Now if that expression "Christ must reign" is yet future ... you remember how I brought out in John 4, we read, "And Jesus must needs go through Samaria". Now, do you believe that Jesus... Lyman, do you believe that Jesus must yet, in the future, go through Samaria? Why don't you? It says so right there, just plain as can be. Says so plainly. John 4th chapter, "Jesus must needs go through Samaria". Well, if you read some more on the subject, you'll find that He's already done that. And that's a grammatical expression that in the tense that by itself might seem to put it in the future. But other scriptures on the subject say but He's already done it.
Now He must from one standpoint, "Now Jesus must needs go through Samaria", and He went through Samaria, and found the woman at Jacob's well and so forth and soon. And so I know that that expression, "He must needs go through Samaria", though it seems to be definitely future, I know now that it was future from the time John was placing himself in when he said, "Now the next event that I'm recording, now Jesus must needs go through Samaria". And He went through and found Jacob's well, the Samaritan woman, and so forth.
And exactly the same with the expression, "He must reign". And He has reigned! "He most reign till He's put down all enemies, and He has put down all enemies." And I went just so carefully into it as to look up every single word in the both the English and the Greek of the word 'rule' and 'authority' and 'power' and 'might' and 'dominion' and 'death' and the word 'destroy', and make a chart you remember. And showed how every single one of them, rule and authority, dominion, power, have already been put down and [ ? ] …
But now watch again. John Owen admitted ... claimed it, now the expression, "Jesus must reign till He put down all enemies", the last enemy to be destroyed is death, now watch, John said, "Christ has not reigned". Now, that's his whole contention in a nutshell, Christ has not reigned. All right, let's accept it for a moment: Christ has not reigned. The defeat of death for the Christian, that John says has happened and will be culminated, crowned with Christ coming, before He reigns, coming in the rapture, that then Christians get their immortal bodies so death will sure be destroyed so far as they're concerned. But that isn't a part of Christ's reigning because He hasn't reigned yet. Well then just how did Christ destroy that death? Because that isn't a part of His reign because His reign hasn't started yet, according to John. Now ! tried to help him to see what hopeless contradiction it is.
But now watch. So Christ hasn't yet come to reign. They laugh; victoriously visibly is destroying death. He must reign till He's put down all enemies, all rule, power, might, authority, and death, the last one. And to and behold you, death is destroyed for all the Christians before He begins His reign, according to John. But now let's go on. Now that He reigns, He binds the devil first and has him put in the pit for a thousand years, the devil that has the power of death, put in the pit for a thousand years. And Christ reigns with a rod of iron for a thousand years. And He puts people to death ... for certain offenses. during the Millennium. John admits that too. "A man shall die a hundred years old", so forth, when Christ brings the rod of iron. If somebody disobeys Christ flagrantly and not wanting to do it during the Millennium, they'll be visited with physical death. Well if it's an instrument in the hands of the king, it won't be regarded as an enemy from the king's standpoint will it? Well does the policeman regard his gun as an enemy? No! Does he regard his billy as do enemy? No! Does the United States, when they had the atomic bombs ready for the Japanese front, did they regard our atomic bombs as enemies? No! No. Death in the hands of the Lord during the thousand years, my friend, won't be an enemy from God's standpoint. And it won't be an enemy from the righteous. people's standpoint, see. Because it's in the hands of the Lord now, He's got the keys of it.
All right, so during the Millennium, with the devil in the pit for a thousand years, Christ reigns. Now ... and John Says. that it's during that time that He's going to put down all rule and might and power and authority and so forth, and at the end of the Millennium put down death. And then, because of Christ destroying death after the Millennium, there'll be no more death. I asked him, I said, "John, for whom will that death be destroyed at the end of the Millennium? It's already been completely done away with for Christians before the Millennium began. We're both agreed on that." John said, "That's right". "And so when death is destroyed according to you at the end of the Millennium, it'll be destroyed for whom? For whom?"
(comment from audience) There's only one death left, and that's the second death.
John said there'd be only one death left, and that's the second death. But here's the way John Owen argued. He said, "When the dead, the unbelieving dead, are raised from the dead, that's the destroying of death". I said, "Now, wait a minute John, wait a minute. When Christ at the resurrection of the unjust", the rest of the dead lived not till the thousand years were finished, the first resurrection at the beg-inning of the Millennium, resurrection of the just, at the end, the Old Testament judgment, at the end of the Millennium, the resurrection of the unjust, "and so now watch, at the end of the Millennium, Christ as the king raises the unjust. What for? To destroy their enemy death?" I said, "John, try to get one of them to believe it, when they hear their doom, "Depart from Me into the second death." And we're told that death and hell will be cast into the lake of fire. Now that's the way the Lord's going to do any destroying of death at the end of the Millennium. Death and hell will be cast into the lake of fire. Now in what sense ..." Just imagine!
It is of course as his wife said, "A pigheaded Englishman". It's sad to repeat that, but he's got a postscript to his articles now saying that we, and I'm the guiltiest one, guilty of having his wife go to the hospital. Well that's tragedy. I have wept physical tears and from my heart for them, and prayed, "Oh God, spare her according to Thy Holy will from those ..." But anyway.
At the end of the Millennium, imagine Christ not destroying death till the end of the Millennium, the end of the Millennium. And then the only people's death whom He can destroy… are those ... some of whom have committed suicide who wanted death to hide them, and when they're called out of the condition of death to face the Lord, they'll cry for the rocks and mountains to fall on them. So in what could be the purpose of calling that destroying death? Just what would be victorious now about Christ raising the unbelievers out of the grave? In itself, just why would that be a wonderful culmination of Christ's reign of victory? to raise the unbelievers out of the grave to stand before the white throne judgment? Just what would be a wonderful culmination ... "He must reign till He's put down all enemies, the last one's death", and that's when He raises the unjust. What a glorious, hallelujah, scene that'll be when all the Judas, and Pontius Pilate, and Pharaoh, Hitler probably, and Mussolini, et cetera, when they're all raised out of death and hell.
(gap on tape)
... when death is destroyed at that time.
(Adair Grove from audience) Now I agree with that.
(Adair Grove from audience) Will you please explain the mystery, the who in that "no more death" applies to?
Well, I ... so far as ...
(Adair Grove from audience) I agree with ?
... Now I understand ...
(Adair Grove from audience) ... Not it doesn't bother me ...
... Fine. I understand ...
(Adair Grove from audience) ... I want you to ? ? ? day of grace.
All right, so far as I know, it couldn't possibly mean anything other or this explanation included anyway, that when the Millennial reign, which is another period of time when man is tested, that's why the devil's going to be let loose and have another chance at them, during that period of time when the devil is chained, and men are allowed to exercise a certain amount of insolence and disobedience and then be punished by the Lord reigning with a rod of iron, when that period is over, there'll be no such other period for man. And the Lord will not inflict death penalty upon anybody in the renewed earth. The people that come through it will be purified, have the righteous garments of the Lord, and there'll be no more death, no more tears, no more sorrows. That's all it can mean. Let's turn and read some of it in the 20th chapter of Revelation.
(Adair Grove from audience) ? ? there'll be no more physical death for the race.
Yes, that's right. 0r spiritual either, see. Or spiritual ...
(Adair Grove from audience) ... Well, then we'll be spiritual.
But ... Yes, that's right.
(comment from audience) This statement you're referring to here is the faithful who come through the Millennium.
(comment from audience)
There'll be no more. Yeah, that's right, that's right.
(comment from audience) It’ll all be taken care of for all who have already been saved up to the Millennium.
That's right, that's right. Let's look back at the ... at the ... at the 19th chapter, the 19th chapter, and begin with the 17th verse,
And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake burning with fire ... with brimstone. And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years.
Now you see this is taking up this a bit and going back into the beginning of the Millennium again. It's just ... we have it often. Mrs. Eddy said that there. are two accounts of creation. "The first is spiritual: God made man in His image, and the second can't be true because it says He made man of the dust of the earth. It's a lie." That's what Mrs. Eddy says verbatim. It's a lie, see. Well one account just gives a panoramic view in a few words. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth and ..."
(gap on tape)
... cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seat upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled; and after that he must be loosed a little season. And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years,. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
Now there you see that's the beginning of the Millennium. This is the first resurrection there I mean.
Blessed and holy is he that path part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. And when the thousand years shall be ... And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from heaven ... [God out of heaven], and devoured them. And the devil [that deceived them] was cast into the take of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the take of fire.
Notice this: death was cast into the take of fire. Well in what sense is it destroyed then? In what sense is this death destroyed, see? Cast into the take of fire. I mean so far as ... well anyway.
This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death.
Now what's the setting of this? It's after the Millennium. The institution of the new heavens and the new earth.
And there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for the words are faithful...
(and so forth.)
Now to me that's certainly plain enough. But especially is it plain, or certainly that the hodge-podge of pretending to believe in the pre-millennial coming of Christ and that Christ has destroyed death potentially for the believer ... See, John said that he agreed with what I was bringing out that in Christ shall all be made alive, and that as a grain of wheat ,.."Except a grain of wheat fall in the ground and die it abideth alone, but if it die it bringeth forth much fruit." And that that was a picture ... and Christ was the firstfruit, and that's the picture .., far as I recall now, he readily said that he agreed with that, that Christ in His resurrection was the firstfruits of all the resurrection of the believers. And that in that sense Christ had destroyed death for the believer. And it would be ... the culmination would be at the rapture when the believer gets his immortal body.
But as I brought out, I said, "All right, that's before He's done any reigning, according to you. Because you SAY that ... "He must reign" is all future. And John hoo-ied the idea that Christ has already reigned, see.
Now the scriptures I just gave, that great "without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angles, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory." Why was He manifested? Another passage, I John 3, "He was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil." Did He do it? Did He do it? He took upon Himself a form like unto His brethren, flesh and blood, that He through death might destroy him that had the power of death, that's the devil.
(Berl Chisum from audience) Brother Maurice.
(Bert Chisum from audience) How is that reconciled with the statement in Revelation 6 ... or Romans 16 that God is to at a future time bruise Satan under our feet, and also the fact that we still wrestle against principalities and powers?
Well hallelujah. We wrestle against them when we're spiritual in the name of the Lord and the way we can defeat the devil is to just put on the armor of God that I been using tonight. We tell the devil, we take the shield of faith and say, "I have it from the Word of God that you're a defeated foe. You are conquered. You're under the feet of Him in whom I am. And I ..."the shield of faith by which are conquered author... all the fiery darts are with him. We're more than conquerors through Him that loved us when we're armed with God, having your loins girt with truth. What truth? Some of the truth I'm giving tonight. The truth about Christ's victory. The truth about the devil being defeated. The truth about the keys of death and hell being in the Lord's hands now, see. And that the devil has ... "Resist the devil and he'll flee from you," Why. Because when we resist in the name of the Lord ... and we should do that more than we do, we should do that more than we do. We should let these truths ...
I was just thinking recently, and I thought, "O God," it was what I hoped to bring out tonight but I'm not going to get to now, I just thought, "O Lord, help me to picture the spectacle, the spectacle of ... of Paul after he was saved (well even Peter, but I'll take Paul), when he was breathing out threatenings against all those that believed that Jesus, that one that he'd heard was marred, spit on, crowned with thorns, mocked and slapped, His beard plucked out, stripped naked, and died crying on the cross, Saul never saw that you know but he heard about it later and he thought it was indescribably horrible that they should say that that Jesus was the Messiah, was the Christ the King. And he got orders from the chief priests to take all he could find to Damascus, he'd already been doing it around Jerusalem, everybody that believed that Jesus was the Christ. And went out down the Damascus, road breathing out threatenings, we read in the 9th of Acts, breathing out threatenings against them, breathing them out as he's going down the road. And he said, "I persecuted the church with great zeal making havoc, trying to get them killed and all". And he was stricken down by that light by the noon day sun in the Damascus road. He heard a voice, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me?" "Who art Thou, Lord?" Jesus was yonder gone back to the dust, defeated; Saul thought. "Who art Thou, Lord? I'm not persecuting anybody in heaven. I'm stamping out this fanatical blasphemous sect that believes that Jesus came from heaven and went back. Who art Thou, Lord?" "I am Jesus whom thou persecutest."
There he stands before Agrippa years later, Paul says, "I wasn't disobedient to the heavenly vision". Oh-h-h, if we would ask God ... that I would more to suddenly visualize Paul as he goes down .the road preaching the faith he used to destroy we read in Galatians. "Paul, what's empowering' you?" "Oh listen, the last enemy's been destroyed, death. And him that had the power of death has been defeated, and I got the armor of God that'll enable me to meet him everywhere he comes along. And I'm more than conqueror, more than conqueror through Him. I want to tell people that the fight's over! The judgment's past! Just outside the walls of Jerusalem when God spared not His own Son was when the sins of the whole world were atoned for. And him that had the power of death was met in his own prison house and conquered and the keys wrested by the one that I love. And His majesty's called me to go out." Pout believed that he was telling news that made all heaven rejoice, as he tells us in Philippians ... Ephesians I, Philippians 2, that this One who was in the form of God didn't think it a thing to be grasped after to be equal with God, but humbled Himself, took upon Himself a form like unto His brethren and then made Himself of no reputation, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore!' God hath high exalted Him. Because the death of the cross did something. Because the death of the cross succeeded in destroying him that had the power of death. That's why Christ died that He might destroy him that had the power of death and deliver those that were held in bondage through fear of death in their lifetime. And He was manifested to destroy the works of the devil, and when He got through that work, wherefore God hath highly exalted Him. On the basis of what? Because of His death. What kind of death? The death that accomplished what He did, what that death was.
Oh…Instead of speaking now more or less like I used too that the death of Christ was a beautiful, awful tragedy and it resulted all right somehow in God being able to forgive my sins, but oh so often I've thought of Jesus as almost always the quiet, meek, and lowly Nazarene that let them spit in His face, that let them crown Him with thorns, that let them mock Him. But you know, now I can see that the Lord Jesus was on earth to fight man's ruler. Principalities and powers, the rulers of this darkness, not these poor little puppets of the devil dawn here, little o1' Pilate and little oil Herod, and little oil Pharisees and Sadducees. He knew they were victims, He knew they were victims. (Now get this please, listen.) He knew that they were nothing but slaves. He didn't come down to fight them, but to meet their captor. To meet the one that got the first man to abdicate the throne in the garden of Eden, to bow to him, And Christ came down to meet him. And He went down and let him do his work: put Him in the grave, passing death upon Him, and came out of it with the keys and all. That's what Paul's telling about. And to think ... "But I see too, I see ..." Yeah, keep on looking around, got your parking lights on rather than the searchlight of God's Word and say, "I see Him who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor for the suffering of death. I see Him out of the grave with the keys of hell and death ascending far above all principalities and powers and might and dominion and rule and authority and every name that's named not only in this age but that which is to come! and made head over all things to the church which is His body".
What would make you and me believe that we are just immeasurably wealthy? That we need never fear any sort of a calamity or a crash or hard passages or anything. We just have the wealth of John D Rockefeller and the Ford Company and the General Motors and the Standard Oil, I mentioned that, and the big insurance companies, it's just all-l-l in our name. Would that kinds make us say, "Well I needn't worry now about hamburgers for the future. (laughs) I got to ..."Do we really believe that the Lord Jesus ...
Look, this is the section I want to dwell on. I'll touch it now. In Matthew 11, look at this.. I tried to help John to see this. And I can say again that God overruled and God used John Owen in my life. Of course I saw these things as to clarity, but not anything like in the depth and breadth, when I met the Universalists, as I said that Sunday up in Wilbur's back yard, 25 years ago. That was when I first got those scriptures, saw those scriptures that Christ "now in the ends of the ages has He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself". That that's the literal meaning in "the ends of the ages" or the very consummation of the ages.
I spoke two weeks ago this morning and Jim, my son, heard it and up near the coast on Mexican station and he said, "Daddy, when you get that back, please don't destroy it. I want that to get a copy of it." He said, "I got more out of that tape than anything I've ever heard you give," or something to that effect. I spoke on "Christ And The Atom", something like that. And I brought out how that in a day when men say, "Why it's ridiculous, it's preposterous, to think that if there's a Creator, those who profess to believe in God, that if God, the Creator of the universe, could be down in the form of a little baby, or less than that, a little speck of life in a Jewish virgin's womb. It's so ridiculous." So they reject God manifest in the flesh. But then they get their microscopes and they begin to dig around and say, "You know, there's. something down here we can't see with our naked eye. Ah, let's call it 'atom', it's an atom. I see it now. Eureka, I found it." And then they study and sweat and they get Nobel Prizes in chemistry for doing something with it, weighing it. What was it Clay that a ... that Dr ...
(comment from audience) Millikan.
... Millikan got? He got his Nobel Prize for what?
(comment from audience) Weighing.
Weighing, that's what I thought. He put a decimal down and 26 ciphers and one, I believe that was it. I was thinking of that. You can correct me if you want to, but that ... I wouldn't know the difference. (laughs) A decimal and went ... 26 ciphers and one, way over here see; that's what an atom weighs. And so they found it. Eureka! Think of it Lyman. A decimal, 26 zero zero zero zero zero one, well we got it now. And then they say, "What we going to do with it?"
Ah-h, I read the other day from a scientific treatise of several years ago, said it's of course preposterous and utterly unscientific to think that anybody can ever break ... crack the atom. But they got instruments now you know and they smash that atom and harness the power, and now they defeated the Japs and the Germans ... the Russians now say, "Yeah but we got more 'n you have, and having" and the whole world is wondering and all and the atomic energy ... ah-h-h, we're going to have atomic energy. President Eisenhower and Nixon, Dick, are saying that President Eisenhower is doing more towards getting nuclear energy, atomic energy, harnessed for the industrial use peace time, ah-h-h. And Stevenson said, "Ah-h-h, he's not doing a thing", and back and forth. But nuclear energy and atomic energy and power. Oh, the future with atomic energy.
I say, "Wait a minute. You mean to tell me the most marvelous power scientists have ever dreamed of has been discovered wrapped up in an invisible speck?" "Yes. Yes." "Well tot me tell you about the Creator of that that was in a little speck in a virgin's womb. And then I'll tell you how when the devil said, "!'m going to crack it, I'm going to SMASH it!" He just let loose power (laughs) and put the devil where he belongs, going to put them where he belongs. The Lord Jesus, I say it reverently, when He, God in human form, let the devil smash Him. We're told that He through death destroyed him that had the power of death, that's the devil." And they said, "That's silly". "it isn't silly though for you to discover one of these atoms of energy, little atoms, and bust it open and haunt you". That's the insanity of unbelievers' pride. "I'm not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for it's the dynamite of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth."
Oh-h, may God help us to see and to glory in the spectacle, "God ..." I was going to read the 40th of Isaiah tonight about the nations are like a drop in the bucket. Not only that, but they're like the dust in scales' balances. Not only that, they're vanity, less than nothing in the 40th of Isaiah. That's the nations, the nations; …two billions of people. They're all like a speck of dust in the scales. And yet the Creator of the nations, potentially, and the Creator of the earth thereon and all the stellar universe, the Creator one day came down in human form. "Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest."
Do you believe that a million years from tonight you and I'll be able to look back and maybe see some of the things. and wonder why we were so slow and so stupid and we got stopped ... I've been stopped many a time from reading and studying farther into these things by listening to a football game on the radio or (I'm not condemning all of that as such but), and I've been stopped by trifling here and wasting time there and maybe thinking, "I don't know, I don't want people to think I'm fanatical, and after all I've just moved up here to Arroyo Grande and maybe I should wait for awhile before I let it be known and come out ... I don't want ... and I thought brother Rapp and his wife will be immediately identified with this fanatic and the Gruensteins and maybe I would better ... " and many a time I've deliberated and thought and then sometimes been ashamed and ... you know, I wonder what we would do if we believed the mystery of godliness? That God, God, was on earth as a little baby. And that God let men spit in His face. The Creator of the universe let men crown Him with thorns. And that He let the devil fasten Him in death.
Oh, I thought I would try to bring out maybe how Jesus Christ when He was asleep in that boat with His disciples. He just didn't you know let them get excited until He teach them something like He let that fellow be born blind. He didn't sin, his parents didn't sin, but that he glory of God might be wrought you remember. And Lord Jesus ... just like He said ... didn't wake up Lazarus you know. And deliberately stayed away until Lazarus died. Just deliberately stayed away until Lazarus died, and then went over there to raise the dead. Waited until he was dead four days too, see; deliberately did it, see.
And ... the Lord Jesus asleep in the boat and the disciples ... and the devil comes to destroy them. The devil sure is stupid. Course he can fool us tots a time, but he sure is stupid. The prince of the power of the air thought he could destroy by getting the winds angry and the waves busting around you know. And the boat about to capsize and the disciples fighting, "Lord, carest Thou not that we perish?!" I ... I wish I could picture, I ... I wish I could give out like I'm thinking must a happened, how the Lord Jesus, the Creator of the universe, said to the winds and the waves. How do you suppose He said it? "Be still. Be still," the winds and the waves, "and immediately", the text says, "there was a great calm". "And immediately there was a great calm."
Without controversy great is, the mystery of godliness. What do you think the angels, the good angels in glory were doing as they looked down over the battlements of heaven and saw things: like that? When they saw Him stand and let them spit in His face and crown Him with thorns, what do you think the angels thought? And when they see you and me, you remember Christ said, "He that'll be ashamed of Me, him will I be ashamed of before My Father", "He that won't confess Me before men ... He that' l t confess Me before men, him will I confess before My Father,". Let's study more and meditate more upon the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ.
I'm sure my dear friends, He went back to glory a conqueror. The Scriptures are too plain and repeated. I'm prepared and delighted and chomping on the bit to meet anybody that God permits to come my way and to meet me on the subject of Christ having already destroyed death, in the only sense, listen, in the only sense He will ever destroy it. Because He's not going to destroy His own instrument. He destroyed death when it was according to His own sovereign will in the hands of the devil and therefore an enemy. The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
That's what I saw very plainly when I was dealing with these Universalists 25 years ago. That the second death... and I asked them, I asked Killum (?), I said, "You show me in the Word of God where the second death is ever referred to as an enemy, by God. You tell me where God ever calls the second death an enemy." No sir. The death that was destroyed by the Lord Jesus was an enemy death. Well you think that the keys He has in His hand now are enemies? No! There're His now. And that's why we read, and l must close, we read in I Corinthians that death is ours.
I brought that out over and over again with John in the audience. Paul said, "Now death is ours". Just imagine that little fellow going around, saying, "Why you poor people that are taking my name as a little party, "I'm of Paul", and over there, 'film of Apollos". Don't you know that as Christians everything that God has is ours. All things are yours, whether Paul, or Apollos, Cephas, things present, things to come, all yours, and you're Christ's, and Christ, is God's". Oh Christians we're wealthy, wealthy, wealthy in Christ. Complete in Him, more than conqueror in Him. Let's tell it out more. Let's be proud to let it be known we love the Lord Jesus. "If any man love not our Lord Jesus, let him be anathema."
I close with one other text, Romans the 14th chapter 8th and 9th verses, Romans 14:8 and 9. But ! haven't done ... next time !'m down here maybe speak on "The Spectacle of the Ages", cause I sure haven't done much more than just touch it occasionally. The spectacle of the ages was that focal point and focal person, Jesus Christ, God manifest in the flesh. It was the focal point of all ages, past and future, so far as man's concerned. Oh remember when He said, "Now is the judgment of this world". Why you know that never did mean anything to me like it does now, since I've wept over this subject more. 'Now' is referring to His death. "Now is the judgment of this world." I catch myself every once in awhile thinking of the judgment coming, that's coming. There's a judgment coming all right, but the judgment that's coming isn't to be compared in horrible spectacle with the judgment's that past. That's the spectacle of the ages of our judgment when all the billows of God's wrath! and all the sins of all mankind, including all the Christians, were borne by Jesus Christ. And the devil and the demons and God the Father were apparently united in burying Him under that horrible weight of doom and agony and loneliness on the cross. That's the judgment scene of all judgment scenes. The white throne judgment will be one which I'll stand back and stay, "Hallelujah, praise God, that the Christ murderers are put where they belong". I'll have the mind of Jesus Christ without any inhibitions or anything holding me down by Adamic softness, by carnal mush, see. I'll have a sense of God's holiness and God's justice and the sinfulness of sin, when I stand with the Lord when He comes back with thousands of His saints. That's the beginning, but even at the close too, the Millennium.
Romans 14:8 and ... 7, let's s read the 7th verse.
For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.
Do you believe that? Do you believe you can sin all by yourself and keep it to yourself? Why my friends I have affected my children more than I ever realized by some private sin. I've affected my wife, it's affected my relationship to you. Oh sin, sin, is never alone: Its the most fertile of all the things in the devil's realm. Sin, it breeds and scatters and spoils.
No man liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.
And of course righteousness too, thank God, spared.
And whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord.
What about those that are dead in Christ, if death's an enemy? I Thessalonians 5. (sic). The dead in Christ will reign, if death's an enemy. The dead in Christ. Because it will mean death, we're separated from this ... my mother, so far as physical illness' concerned, and my sister, and brother and sister B.D. Johnson, I could go up and down the line, my mother died to sickness, and the veil of tears, pain, my sister died ... I was glad to hear today that my newest granddaughter's named Helen Louise, that's my sister Helen's name, was, Helen Louise, Helen Louise. I didn't know anything about they were thinking about naming her that. Don’t know whether Ted has any kinfolks named that way or not, buy anyway, Helen Louise. Well when my sister Helen died after seven years of multiple sclerosis, her death wasn't an enemy. Even her husband said, "I ... I have to thank God, have to thank God". Because it was separation from pain and from agony and from the sense often, "10m no good to anybody and just a burden". I used to tell her, "Helen, don't say that. Your prayers and ..." and so forth. But anyway. Her death wasn't an enemy. No, She just died, she just separated to that which was painful, sorrowful, agonizing, and so forth. "Absent from the body, present with the Lord." Why she is dead in Christ, so far as her body's concerned, because that body now, it's not causing her any pain, and it's the body the Lord is going to revive, because the dead shall rise. He's going to revive that body and take out it ... will have taken out everything that's mortal you know, quickened, and she'll be back in that body immortalized. So dead.
Whether we die, we die unto the Lord.
For to this end Christ both died,
now notice the culmination, the culmination here, to this end, for this purpose, this is the end for which Christ died now.
To this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the living and the dead.
Well then, did He destroy death? Well we're told here that to the end
He died, and rose, and revived that he might be Lord both of the dead and the living.
So He has an office as result of His death, burial, and resurrection that He didn't have before. It isn't that He was Lord ... wasn't Lord of lords before, but in the plan of God the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, it's His plan that this be so that He have sons, like in Hebrews 2, "He ... He made perfect, the captain of our salvation made perfect by suffering". He's made perfect, as captain of our salvation. When He was weary and sat down there by Jacob's well and hungry, it was His voluntary yielding to the fleshly ... to the second man flesh and blood nature, see. That was God manifest in flesh, and we're going to see how God can enable a flesh and blood body to endure trials and hardships and defamation and ... and false accusation, persecution, and agony, and loneliness, and all like that. And God wants you and me now to manifest Christ in us, the hope of glory.
To this end Christ both died, and revived, and rose that he might be Lord both of the dead and the living.
Do you appreciate that? That Christ is Lord of the dead. Why? How? Because of His death work and resurrection. That's what the text says, not because of a future reign, but because of His past reign, His past reign.
Well you've been helpful listeners. I hope you'll receive them ... receive these things, check up as you have opportunity, and ask God to help you to see. Ask God to help you to see where any of these things that I've been giving detract from the person and work of the Lord Jesus. Have you thought of doing that way? Often when I'm dealing a stranger that ... I just when I was talking with Wayne Allen when I ... had a trip together in my car, something like this at the close, said, "Well now Wayne, try to recall as you think back and see if any of the things that I contended for and gave you as to what I ... we believe and all, doctrine and so forth, see if you can honestly believe that they robbed Jesus Christ, and fattened me or anybody's flesh?" I didn't use those words but that thought. Go back and see, Well now, what do I have to believe was the real end of that line of argument and doctrine, so forth. Did it really center in Christ and His glory and His work and make less and less and less of flesh? Why of course.
My friends, Christianity is not worth a hill of beans if Christ isn't conqueror of the last enemy; Christianity is a. fake and a fraud. And that's one reason I was glad to see John so miserably defeated, and others that have been beguiled in their unstable condition by him in that. I’m glad to see that. Because thank God!, I don't want anybody to be victorious in an unvictorious Christ! I don't want to see anybody put apparently victorious in contending for a defeated Christ. And God help you and me to want to be victorious as a living example of what we claim as a fact, that Christ is victorious.
Lets stand and bow our heads.
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