What the Future Holds for the Saint of God | Revelation 14:12-13 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-wfg83-1256eb3 As we studied verses 6-11, we listened as angels announced the fact that God had pronounced a sentence of damnation on this world system and all those who refuse to believe the Gospel message. Those verses tell us about a horrible place called Hell where the lost will suffer in the flames of God’s wrath for all eternity. That is a sad, horrible picture of the future that awaits every person who lives and dies outside of a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. If you are not saved today, I challenge you to examine your life and where you are headed. Do you really want to go to Hell? Do you really want to spend eternity separated from God and from everything of beauty, purity and spirituality? You do not have to go to Hell! You can be saved if you will come to Jesus and call on Him by faith, Rom. 10:9, Acts 16:31. What a contrast there is when we comes to verse 12! We leave the wrath and judgment of verses 6-11 and we are exposed to the sweet fragrance of God’s grace. Having declared His judgment against the wicked, God now demonstrates His grace toward the righteous. Having shown us the wicked, God now casts the spotlight on His faithful remnant. He says, “You have seen the wicked ones, now take a look at my children!” These verses show us what will happen to the saints of God when they leave this world. We have seen the hellish side of death; now let’s examine the heavenly side of death. What waits on the sinner is ghoulish; what waits on the saint is glorious.
After the Storms Have Past | Revelation 14:1-5 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-ij3pb-124ab04 If you have been studying along with us as we have moved through this amazing book, you know that the last two chapters have been dark, depressing and discouraging. We have been talking about the devil, the Antichrist and the False Prophet. We have witnessed the depths of depravity as man abandons his Creator to worship the devil through his false Christ. Now, the scene changes! Chapter 14 is like a glorious rainbow after and fierce storm. God takes the brush of His grace and repaints the landscape of the Revelation. He gives us a breath of heavenly air in these verses. Only God can do that! Only God can take that which is horrible beyond words and turn it into a thing of glory. That is just what He does in these verses. In this passage we are allowed to get a little glimpse of heavenly glory. We are allowed to see the Lamb of God. He is the theme of the book and He is center stage in these verses. It would be a blessing if we could figure out how to keep Jesus at the center of everything we do in our lives as individuals and in the life of the church. In these verses we meet again the 144,000 Jewish evangelists who were selected and sealed in chapter 7. These men have preached the Gospel of the Kingdom during the darkest days of the Tribulation. They were persecuted by the Antichrist, but they were preserved by God.
When God Abandons a Nation | Judges 16:18-20; Judges 10:13-14; Proverbs 1:24-31 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-3j283-124138f One of the most tragic scenes in the Bible (and yet one of the most familiar to us) is the scene of the strongest man who ever lived, a man by the name of Samson, finding out he had no strength.Judges chapter 16 records this. “When Delilah saw that he had told her all that was in his heart, she sent and called the lords of the Philistines, saying, ‘Come up once more, for he’s told me all that is in his heart.’ Then the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hands. And she made him sleep on her knees, called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his hair. “Then she began to afflict him and his strength left him. And she said, ‘The Philistines are upon you, Samson,’ and he woke from his sleep and said, ‘I will go out as at other times and shake myself free.’” And here’s the telling line written by God the Holy Spirit. “But he did not know that the Lord had departed from him, so the Philistines seized him, gouged out his eyes, brought him down to Gaza, bound him with bronze chains, and he became a grinder in the prison.” Sad. He didn’t know that the Lord had departed from him. I can’t imagine anything worse than being abandoned by God. To the sons of Israel, earlier in the book of Judges in chapter 10, God said this, “You have forsaken me, you have served other gods; therefore, I will deliver you no more. Go and cry out to the gods which you have chosen. Let them deliver you in the time of your distress.” This was God saying to Israel, “I’m done with you” - abandoned by God. Proverbs chapter 1 records a similar sentiment. “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hands and no one paid attention. You neglected all my counsel, you did not want my reproof. I will even laugh at your calamity. I will mock when your dread comes, when your dread comes like a storm and your calamity comes like a whirlwind. When distress and anguish come on you, then they will call on me but I will not answer. They will seek me diligently. They will not find me because they hated knowledge, did not choose the fear of the Lord. “They would not accept my counsel, they spurned all my reproof, so they will eat of the fruit of their own way and be satisfied with their own devices.” Again, being abandoned by God, turned over to the inevitable consequences of sinful choices.
The Mark of the Beast | Revelation 13:16-18 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-rbs4p-1235303 We have arrived at a passage of Scripture that has caused more speculation that possibly any other. For centuries people have been trying to decipher the Mark of the Beast. People actually fear the number 666. Several years ago, I was in a store making a purchase, and the total of my purchases came to $6.66. This has happened on more than one occasion. Nearly every time, the clerk has tried to get me to buy something else so she won’t have to ring up $6.66. I always pay the $6.66 and sometimes use the opportunity to witness to the clerk, and to give a brief explanation of the Mark of the Beast. It can be a wonderful witnessing opportunity. There is a lot of speculation concerning what the Mark of the Beast is all about. There is much misinformation concerning this subject as well. These verses give us some of the information we need to understand just what the Mark of the Beast is. We won’t learn everything we would like to know, but we will learn enough to know that no Christian in this room needs to be afraid of the Mark of the Beast. So, let’s look at these three verses today. Let’s see if we can dispel some of the mystery surrounding the Mark of the Beast.
The Beast Out of the Sea | Revelation 13:1-10 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-53ut3-1224961 In our last study we met the Antichrist. We tried to consider what the Bible says about this coming world ruler who is called the "Man of Sin"; the "Son of Perdition". The Antichrist gives us an opportunity to see how Satan operates. The devil is an imitator. He takes what God does and he tries to duplicate it. You see, Jesus, the real Christ, is a revelation of God the Father. In John 1, there are three verses that are worthy of note, John 1:1, 14, 18. These verses teach us the truth that Jesus is a living, breathing revelation of God the Father. The verse 18, the word "declared' translates the Greek word that gives us our English word "exegesis". The word means "to narrate, to explain, to lead out, to draw out'. It speaks of "an explanation, or a narration". In preaching, we use exegesis to "lead out and explain" the truths contained in the text. When Jesus came, He came to "explain, to lead out, to narrate" God. In other words, Jesus Christ was and is God in the flesh. He was able to say, "I and my Father are one," John 10:30. He was also able to say, "he that hath seen me hath seen the Father," John 14:9. Jesus is God incarnate; He is God in the flesh! In the Antichrist, Satan attempts to duplicate this relationship between Jesus Christ and God the Father. The Antichrist will be a living, breathing revelation of the devil. He will be the devil incarnate; he will be the devil in the flesh. We know that our God is a triune Being. He is one God Who manifests Himself in the Persons. He is Father, Son and Holy Ghost. All three are One God, yet each is an individual Person. They come together to make up the Holy Trinity. In Revelation 12-13, we are introduced to the Satanic Trinity. Satan imitates God the Father. The Antichrist imitates God the Son. The False Prophet, who we will meet in our next study, imitates God the Holy Spirit. Let's give our attention once again to this man who will be known as the Antichrist. These verses give us some important details concerning his mission, his methods and his miracles.
The Great Dragon is Cast Out | Revelation 12:7-17 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-wcky7-121eac5 The chapter we are studying here in Revelation is a chapter wrapped in conflict. In our last study we witnessed war between the nation of Israel, symbolized by pregnant woman, and Satan, symbolized by a great red dragon. As we read our text today, you may have noticed that these verses continue the image of conflict. In fact, verse 7 is quite a shock to the system. When we read of war in Heaven it kind of takes us back. We do not think of Heaven as being a place where wars are fought. If the Bible announced a war on earth, we would not be shocked. Our world has a long history of bloody warfare. According to one statistician, in the 5,560 years of recorded human history there have been some 14,531 wars. Many of history's wars were conflicts between two nations, or two factions within a nation. But, in World War II war was taken to new and devastating heights. By the time the war reached its zenith only twelve nations were not involved in the conflict on at least some level. In the year 2,000 there were at least forty armed conflicts being fought on the soil of thirty-six different nations.' Our world is a world of warfare! Yet, when we read of warfare in Heaven, we are taken aback. This war will settle a conflict that has been raging since before there was a world. As we discovered in our last study, Lucifer, who seems to have been the chief among God's angels sinned against God. He led one-third of the angels of Heaven away from God in this rebellion and he and they were removed from God's presence. Lucifer became Satan and he has done everything in his power to disrupt the eternal plan of God to redeem His elect people and His ruined creation. Since that time, as we will discover, Satan has had limited access to Heaven. This chapter tells us about the final battle in this ages old war. In this battle, Satan, the great dragon, is forever cast out of Heaven. While there are details here that are confusing, these verses are a blessing to the children of God. They tell us of a day when Satan will finally and eternally be cast out of Heaven. Let's look at these verses and examine a few more of the participants of the Tribulation Period.
Great Wonders in Heaven | Revelation 12::1-6 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-gkrdr-12149c4 We are moving into the second half of the book of Revelation today. This second portion opens with an amazing vision of some great wonders on the heavens. Let me remind you that the book of Revelation is not written in chronological order. Chapters 4-9 take us all the way through the end of the Tribulation Period. Chapters 10-11 are passages that stand as like a parenthesis in the action. They reveal some of the “behind the scenes” activities of the Lord. Chapter 11 takes us to the very edge of eternity. It closes with the Lord Jesus claiming His rightful dominion over this universe and it reveals as the inhabitants of that glorious land praise their King. Chapters 12-19 take us back through the Tribulation once again. While chapters 4-9 deal with the timeline or the plan of the Tribulation, chapters 12-19 deal with the characters, or the people of the Tribulation. We are introduced to some of the individuals who will figure greatly during that period of time. So, we are going to tread once again on ground we have already visited. As one writer said, “In Revelation 4-9 we see the events of the Tribulation through a telescope; in Revelation 12-19 we see things through a microscope.” In other words, we are about to get a more detailed look at the events of this period. What is said in chapter 12 is essential to a proper understanding of what is going to be said in the rest of the book. If we misinterpret things here, we are going to be off tract the rest of the way through Revelation.
The Two Witnesses from Another World | Revelation 11:1-14 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-uf5zq-11fc2bb We are still in a parenthetical of Scripture. God is describing a break in the action of the Tribulation as He takes care of some heavenly business. As I mentioned in our last study, this is one of the most difficult passages in the Revelation to interpret. There are two facts to keep in mind as we study these verses. 1. We are on Jewish ground – The images and words used are Jewish in nature. 2. We are dealing with events related to the future – The book of Revelation details future events. Any other interpretation destroys its meaning and purpose. In verses 1-2 we discovered that a new Jewish temple will be built in Jerusalem. The Jews will consecrate a priesthood and they will offer animal sacrifices as prescribed in the Law of Moses. They will worship God under the old covenant, not recognizing the fact that Jesus shed His precious blood once for all to save the souls of humanity. The next vision we are given is of two special witnesses. God sends two ambassadors from Heaven to preach His Gospel message to the people in Jerusalem. It is these men and their ministry that we want to consider today.
A World at War | Revelation 9:13-21 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-6ybne-11eae7e The images depicted in this chapter make it one of the most disturbing passages in the entire Bible. In verses 1-12, we studied a description of a swarm of demons. These demons came to the earth to torment all those who refused to bow to God. They tormented men for five long months and brought terrible suffering to the unsaved. The only grace in those verses is the fact that those who know the Lord Jesus as their Savior will be spared from that attack. It is also a blessing to know that those who are saved today will miss that terrible time because they are safe, at home in Heaven, with the Lord Jesus. As we continue to look at the events of chapter 9, we come to the sixth trumpet judgment. When that trumpet sounds a voice is heard to speak from between the horns of the golden altar. The mention of this altar reminds us of the golden altar of incense that was in the tabernacle and the temple. The golden altar was where incense was burned as an offering to God. It was the place of prayer; the place of intercession. It was a place of mercy, where prayers could be offered to the Lord. In these verses, the place of mercy has become a place of judgment. When people reject the grace, mercy and love of God, they are left with nothing but His wrath and judgment. That is what we are going to see in these verses. The world has rejected grace and they are given judgment. Let’s take some time today to look into the events of the latter part of Revelation 9.
When Hell Comes to Your House | Revelation 9:1-12 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-b3956-11e11ff There can be little doubt that the Book of Revelation contains some of the most frightening images in the entire Bible. This passage may be the most frightening of them all. We are in the midst of the seven trumpet judgments. The first four trumpets have been sounded and they brought forth horrible scenes of death and destruction. The earth’s environment has been shattered and mankind is writhing under the awful judgments of a holy God. Chapter 8 closes with an angel flying through Heaven pronouncing three “woes” upon the “inhabiters of the earth”. This angel knows that the plagues unleashed by the sounding of the last three trumpets will be far more horrible than anything we have witnessed yet. Why does the Lord give us these graphic descriptions of what the world will face during the Tribulation? Why write about such tragedy, death and suffering? I think there are three very good reasons why these things are dealt with in the book of Revelation. 1. These things are mentioned so the church will know what we have been saved from. It is exciting to know that God will deliver His people from this kind of judgment. 2. He extends this glimpse of the future as a warning to those who have not trusted Jesus as their Savior. He wants them to know what they will face if they continue on in their sin and in their rejection. 3. They are given so that those of us who know the truth might be motivated to share the Gospel with the lost. As we consider the judgment associated with the fifth trumpet, I would like to share some of the awful realities that are presented in these verses. Regardless of whether you are saved or lost there is a word here for you. We are living in a day when the subject of Hell is viewed with much skepticism. People just don’t believe in a literal place of torment. In fact, many preachers and church members reject the notion of Hell, as it is presented in the Bible. People joke about Hell and use the word as a byword in everyday language. But, these fact is, Hell is a real place! Real people are going to endure real torments for a real eternity in a real place called Hell. They can attempt to deny it is they wish, but Hell is still real. In these verses, Hell visits earth. I would like to take these verses and point out the terrible realities that will be visited upon the earth in the last days.
A Multitude No Man Could Number | Revelation 7:9-17 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-u7vvq-11cda4d As we continue to move through the book of the Revelation, we are in the middle of a parenthetical passage. Chapter seven is inserted into the narrative to allow us to catch a glimpse of the grace of God at work during the most horrible time earth has ever known. In our last study, we saw the Lord redeem 144,000 Jewish men. These men were sent out into the entire world to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom to all nations. In this passage, we will see the fruits of their preaching, as a vast multitude is brought to faith in Jesus Christ and is delivered out of the Great Tribulation. It comforts my heart to know that the Rapture of the church does not spell the end of people being saved. I praise the Lord that He intends to redeem a multitude that no man could number during the dark years of the Tribulation Period. This passage reveals the heart of our great God. It is in His heart and plan to save sinners, and He is going to do just that during the Tribulation. The Bible is clear that Jesus Christ came into this world for the sole purpose of saving sinners from their sins, “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.” 1 Timothy 1:15. It is also clear that God intends to save every person who will turn to Jesus by faith, “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out,” John 6:37. Here is God’s promise to His elect, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance,” 2 Peter 3:9. That is the heartbeat of God and it can be heard in the verses before us today. Let’s go back into the heart of the tribulation period and rejoin John in his vision of that terrible time. In these verses, we are going to learn about a vast multitude of redeemed saints, and we are going to get a glimpse into glory as the curtain is pulled back just a little. So, let’s take these verses and consider the subject: A Multitude That No Man Could Number.
The Mystery of the 144,000 | Revelation 7:1-8 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-yz8yi-11c331e In Revelation chapter 6 we were witnesses to a world under a storm of divine judgment. The Lord Jesus took possession of the title deed to this planet in chapter 5. He began opening the seven seals of that title deed. He is beginning the process of redeeming this planet out of the hands of sin, sinners and Satan. We watched Jesus open six of the seven seals on the scroll. Before He did, there was a great peal of thunder in Heaven, Rev. 6:1. Thus thunder signaled the approaching storm of God’s divine wrath. As each seal was opened judgment and wrath began to be poured out upon the earth. I just want to remind you that we haven’t seen the worst of the suffering and sorrow that coming upon this world. After the seals seven trumpets will sound and seven bowls will be poured out upon the earth. As we move deeper into the heart of this book we are going to death, judgment and sorrow intensify. Before that happens, we are confronted with a divine parenthesis. Chapter seven is a parenthetical passage that represents a pause in God’s plan to judge the earth. The first part of the storm has passed; the worst part lies unseen in the future. We will examine the events that come later in due course. Today, we will consider the first part of Revelation 7. Let’s watch as the Lord extends grace to a select group of people right in the midst of the Tribulation Period. Two groups of people are in view here in Revelation 7. The first group is identified as the 144,000 in verses 1-8. The second group is identified as a redeemed multitude in verses 9-17. We will consider the 144,000 today and, Lord willing, the redeemed multitude next time. Let’s take these verses and see what God has to say about the 144,000.
Two Worlds in Prayer | Revelation 6:9-17 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-ztkwi-11b8fca As we continue our journey through the book of Revelation, we are just beginning to deal with the events related to the Tribulation. As we understand it, this period of terror and judgment will not begin until the church has been removed from the world in the Rapture. The Tribulation Period itself is a seven year period of time that is divided into two 3 ½ year segments. The first half is known as the Tribulation and the last half as the Great Tribulation. In our last study we looked at the first of four seal judgments that will come upon the world. We saw the rise of the Antichrist, and the coming wars, famines and pestilence that will claim the lives of ¼ of the earth’s population. The first four seals deal with the first 3 ½ year portion of the Tribulation. The two seals we will consider today will deal with the last 3 ½ year portion of the Tribulation Period. Just so you will know, the book of Revelation is not written in chronological order. The events do not necessarily take place in order in which they are written. The events of this book overlap in time. As we continue to move through the book, we are going to be seeing events that will overlap one another from time to time. In Revelation 6:1, from this verse it describes the actions of the great King, the Lord Jesus Christ, in claiming His inheritance, breaking the power of the usurper, Satan, and ultimately defeating all His foes—bringing His people finally to the great Kingdom reign and heaven itself. It is important to note: Jesus is opening the seals on the scroll in heaven. Jesus is unleashing every element. He is sovereignly in control, and exercising the great strength, restraint in His dealings with men on the Earth, and it is He who gives the Antichrist in (6:1), his nod to proceed with Satan’s evil work BUT it is God’s plan to bring judgment to prideful and sinful humanity. In essence, they are pawns in the Hands of God—exercising His will in every circumstance. In our verses today, we see an unusual dynamic at work. We see people in Heaven and people on the earth in prayer. We see both saints and sinners engaged in the business of prayer. We want to study these two seal judgments today. As we do, I would like to talk to you about a couple of the events that will take place during the latter portion of the Tribulation Period.
Sweet Songs in Heavenly Places | Revelation 5:8-14 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-y23rq-11a61f3 This passage finds us still in Heaven in the presence of God and of the Lamb. The church has been raptured, perfected and safely delivered home to Heaven. The landing has been safe! Revelation chapters 4 and 5 find us in Heaven’s courtroom. God is preparing to judge this world. But, before He does, there is a pause for praise in glory. In these verses, Heaven is unable to contain itself and all the residents of that fair land burst forth in rejoicing and praise to God and the Lamb. There is praising, singing and there is music. This the first mention of music in this book, but it will not be the last. Music is a vital part of our lives. From the time the alarm clock sounds in the morning, we are surrounded with music. The radio and television are all about music. We have music in our cars, in our homes and at our places of business. Music is used to move the minds of people. When a restaurant is busy, for example, they might play fast music. When fast music is playing, people eat faster and clear the tables sooner. Music can set the scene in a film and let you know whether you should be afraid, sad or happy. Music is an important part of our lives. It is also an important part of our walk with the Lord. Eph. 5:19 and Col. 3:16 speak about the vital role music plays in our relationship with the Lord. Thank God for music that honors Him! This passage seems to indicate that music will be one of the things that will follow us from earth to Heaven. The music in Heaven will but serve to make Heaven sweeter. In these verses, John takes us into Heaven and gives us front row seats at the concert of the ages. Let’s go in, take our seats and listen to the hosts of Heaven as they lift their voices in praise and worship of God and the Lamb.
Worthy is the Lamb l Revelation 5:1-7 l J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-rnifs-119c0d2 As we enter this fifth chapter, it would be a good time for a little review. In chapter 4, John is caught up into Heaven. When he arrives there, he sees God Himself sitting on a glorious throne. John sees Heaven arrayed as a courtroom. God is preparing to unleash His wrath on the inhabitants of the earth. In the midst of this awesome scene, we also see that Heaven is filled with the praises of Jehovah. Heaven understands what the Lord is about to do and the inhabitants of that city praise the Lord for His glory, His power and for His creation. They are also acknowledging His right to judge the earth. It seems that John is taken to Heaven to give him a heavenly perspective concerning what is about to happen on the earth. Now this is most noteworthy BECAUSE only God could do this; He is presenting to John, a scene in heaven that is being displayed in the present tense, yet it is totally FUTURE TENSE. ONLY THE GOD OF THE UNIVERSE, WHO IS NEVER GOVERNED, NOT CONSTRAINED BY TIME—could do this! I mentioned this last week, but it is still true: when the events of this earth are viewed from a purely earthly perspective, they can cause fear, doubt and confusion. But, when all the events of history are viewed through the eyes of Heaven, everything makes sense! So, chapter four ends with God receiving the praise of His created ones and of His redeemed ones. Heaven throbs with the voices of those caught up in their love for Almighty God. Chapter five finds us in the same courtroom in Heaven. Now, praise has ceased for a moment and heavenly business is about to be transacted, and we are going to have front row seats as it is acted out. We are about to find out that, in Heaven, Jesus is the central Figure. He is the center of attention. I believe that Heaven will be a glorious, wonderful place. I believe there will be streets of gold, walls of jasper, gates of pearl, and more glory than you and I can imagine. I believe it will be great to see Abraham, Moses, Paul, and the rest. But, the main attraction of Heaven will be Christ, Himself. In this passage, we are going to see Jesus Himself, in His rightful place; glorified and exalted in Heaven. This passage sets the stage for the judgments that will come during the Tribulation. It also reveals Jesus in His exalted glory. Let’s look at these verses and consider the thought: Worthy Is The Lamb.
A Nation in Need of Repentance | Jeremiah 8 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-9r3bx-119144d Many believe that our greatest need is jobs, others are sure the economy is the priority need of our nation, and still others would tell us that our greatest need is political, that we somehow must heal the political divide that hinders our nation from moving to a solution for its problems. I want you to know that our greatest problem as a nation is something far more easily solved than the economy, jobs, or political partisanship. Our greatest need in America is spiritual, and simple repentance and a return to biblical principles would do more to heal the wounds of this nation than anything else that can be named. Not only would a true spiritual revival cure the problems in America, it would be a swift solution that would result in immediate changes in every realm of American life. Today, I want to take us back to the final days of the nation of Judah. A prophet named Jeremiah had been sent to them to preach to them the Word of the Lord. Judah, like America, refused to hear or heed the Word of God, and they were judged for their sins. America is headed toward the same end, if she does not repent of her sins and turn back to God.
What Do We Do in the Downtimes of Life? | Isaiah 6:1-8 | J. Allen Mashburn
Isaiah 6:1 mentions the death of King Uzziah. He was the tenth king of Judah and he was a very godly man. He was highly influenced by the prophet Zechariah and, unlike many of the other kings, he never totally departed from the worship of the true God. Under his influence, the southern kingdom attained power, wealth and success unlike any it had enjoyed since the days of Solomon. Made heady by his success as king and by his blessings from the Lord, Uzziah made the mistake of offering incense in the Temple, 2 Chron. 26. He was stricken with leprosy by the Lord for his disobedience to the Lord. He died in that leprous condition! Disobedience to the Lord is a serious thing! Well, evidently, Isaiah is disturbed by the death of the great king. After all, he had reigned for 52 years. His death signaled the end of a time of great prosperity and consistency. For Isaiah and the entire nation, it ushered in a time of uncertainty, change and doubt. Yet, for Isaiah, this is to be a time of rediscovery. Apparently Isaiah had his attention focused on Uzziah, but now that Uzziah is dead, his attention is redirected back to the Lord. What must have been a down time in the prophet’s life became an uptime. That which had help his attention was removed and Isaiah had a fresh encounter with God. What happened to Isaiah in this event spotlights for us what we need during the down times in our own lives.
Bound By the Lord’s Purposes | Romans 9:6-33 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-dnctu-11875cd The first part of verse 6 carries our minds back to what Paul said in verse 1-5. There, we are reminded that the Jews had been the recipients of many divine gifts. Verses 4 and 5 contain quite an impressive list of blessings which they had been given. However, just the fact that they had been given these great spiritual gifts and manifestations, did not guarantee them that they would be saved. That having been said, let us remember that the Word of the Lord will be fulfilled, even to its smallest detail, Isa. 55:11; Matt. 5:18. That which God has predestined and foreordained will come to pass. Whether it is in the arena of prophecy or in the arena of salvation! Paul wants his Jewish readers to understand that salvation is a divine experience. That is, it always begins and ends with God. He is origination, continuation and culmination of our faith, Heb. 12:2. It is all God all the way! In these verses, Paul seeks to explain the matter of God's divine sovereignty in this matter of salvation. He wants us to know, beyond all doubt, that God is in absolute control of the salvation of men's souls.
Special Announcement: WE ARE MOVING SOON! | Revelation 4:1 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-xj5ub-116ad5b As we move into chapter 4 of the book of Revelation, we are heading into strange country. We just left the past as we dealt with the seven churches of Asia Minor. Yet, while we studied those churches, we came to understand that we were, in reality, very much in the present. Now, when we get to this chapter, we are about to step off into the future. This chapter, and the one that follows takes us into the very throne room of God, where we can see ourselves and what we will be doing when we get to Heaven. After that, our focus will be primarily on the earth until we get to chapter 21. What I want you to understand is that Revelation 4:1 is a very special verse. In fact, if you do not understand this verse, then you cannot understand the rest of the book. If you mess up here, you will be out of step all the way through the rest of this great book. Have you ever buttoned your shirt, only to get down to the last button and find you didn’t have a buttonhole to put it in? So, you back up and see what happened and you usually find that your problems begin right at the start. If the right button is not placed in the right button hole, you are in trouble. Things will never turn out right! The same is true with this book. Since this verse is so vital, I want to take some time and move through it in detail today. Now, I don’t know if you know this or not, but this verse is all about our future. It tells us about the day when all the children of God will leave this world together. I want to show you the facts, as they are presented in this verse.
The Laodicean Legacy | Revelation 3:14-22 | J. Allen Mashburn
Source: https://www.podbean.com/eau/pb-7dcmk-1163337 This passage contains the last of seven letters the Lord Jesus sent to the seven churches of Asia Minor. This letter is harsher than all the others. The Lord Jesus comes to this church with no words of blessing and no words of commendation. He examines this church and sees nothing in it that is worthy of praise. This letter is 2,000 years old, yet it is still very important today. We may wonder what a 2,000 year old letter could possibly teach us in 2012. The reason this letter still speaks is because the modern church is very much like the ancient church in Laodicea. While individual churches might not perfectly fit the mold of the church in Laodicea, elements of the problems that existed in Laodicea can be found in many churches. Those same problems can be found here, if we are not careful. They might even be found here, if we were honest! Before we begin to look into these verses, let me give you a little background on the city of Laodicea. • This city was founded by Antiochus II sometime before 253 BC. It was named after his wife Laodice. • The city was located on a high plateau and it was very secure from enemy attack. • One problem in Laodicea was the fact that there was no ready source of water in the city. The Lycus River was nearby, but the waters were too muddy to drink. Water had to be piped in through aqueducts. Water from the hot springs in Hierapolis six miles to the north was brought into the city. Water was also piped in from Colossae, which was located 10 miles to the east. • Laodicea was destroyed by an earthquake in 61 AD. The city was so wealthy and so self-sufficient that they rebuilt their city with their own resources, refusing an offer of aid from Caesar and the Roman government. • Laodicea was famous for three things: 1. Laodicea was famous as a center of Finance - Laodicea was a center of banking and finance. The city renowned throughout the Roman Empire for its wealth and financial power. 2. Laodicea was famous as a center of Fashion - Laodicea was renowned for the soft, black wool produced there. This wool was considered a luxury item and was sought after for clothing and rugs. Laodicea was the center of fashion in its day. The newest styles appeared here first. It was like modern Paris, Milan, or New York in that regard. 3. Laodicea was famous as a center of Medicine - There was a large medical school in Laodicea which produced a tablet that was sold all over the Roman Empire. This tablet was crushed, mixed with water to form a paste. This paste was rubbed into the eyes and was reported to cure a variety of eye problems. Laodicea was a very important city. The church that existed in Laodicea was important as well. It was very important to God. This church was the human representation of the invisible God. How the church was perceived, was how God would be perceived. That is why the spiritual condition of every local church is important to God. The Lord’s words to this church are particularly relevant in our day. Churches like Laodicea, dominate the landscape in our world. We need to our church and place it alongside the church of Laodicea. We need to compare this church to that church, and see if there are any similarities between us and them. If there are, then we need to deal with those areas and bring them into line with God’s Word and His will. It’s easy to tell if a church has inherited a Laodicean mindset. The characteristics of that kind of church are revealed here.