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Wednesday: Understanding God’s Message More Fully — 43 Comments

  1. The Sabbath is pretty special for Seventh-day Adventists. After all, it is part of our name and hence part of our identity. In the context of this current lesson series, we should probably benefit from taking a look at how we present the Sabbath to others.

    Much of our Sabbath argument is directed towards telling other Christians that they are wrong and we are the true worshipers of God because we keep the right day. I call this "time-shift" justification of the Sabbath because essentially we are justifying our shifting of church-going from Sunday back to Saturday. I understand the reason for this and most of our argument is based on strong historical evidence. But, is that enough. I contend that if all we are doing is "time-shifting" church-going, we have not really made a convincing argument.

    There are two points to be made:

    1. Sabbath-keeping has to be something more than church attendance.
    2. Sabbath-keeping should be something that can be inclusive of others. A Sabbath shared is a double blessing.

    What is that "something" that raises the ante for the Sabbath blessing? For me, I have shareable activities that I can participate in on the Sabbath. I do not hesitate to join other bird watchers/photographers on Sabbath. I am sure that you have other ideas, but the key thought in the context of "Making friends for Jesus" should be the shareability of the Sabbath.

    When your unchurched friends see you "keeping Sabbath", do they ask if they can have some of that too?

    Amen!(43)
  2. I find it fascinating to see the difference in Levticus 23 between the feast days and the 7th day Sabbaths!
    The feast days were like our public holidays, no money earning work, get together, remember and celebrate the powerful acts of the LORD in the past. These feasts were each celebrated once a year.

    The seventh day Sabbath is a weekly day of complete rest, it is so wonderful, you are absolved from doing any type of work at all without feeling that you are wasting your time! You have a whole 24 hours to remember and enjoy and copy the example of the LORD who created the world in six days and then rested from His work on the 7th day. Ex 20:8-11
    It is an amazing time to also remember and relax in the knowledge that He saves us and sanctifies us (makes us holy like Him) Deut 5:12-15, Ex 31:13, Eze 20:12,20
    It is a sign that we trust the LORD physically and spiritually to provide for us and to recreate our hearts in His image.
    It is a special time, a weekly date, to get to know our Saviour better and to develop a deeper relationship with Him.

    Amen!(14)
  3. When I think of Sabbath and how we share or present it to the unchurched folk or those of other faiths, sometimes I see pure legalism rearing it's ugly head.

    Amen!(9)
    • Hi Simon. Perhaps you would like to expand on that statement a bit. I am particularly interested in hearing your ideas of combating a legalistic approach to Sabbath observance. What have you found that works?

      Amen!(4)
      • Maurice,what we adventists normally miss out on Sabbath observance is it's essence. We place it above other laws until we forget the Lord of the law as Israelites did as we madly cleave to it's day. We sometimes fail to choose Sabbath as a day of rest, instead, we congest worship in it.

        Amen!(2)
      • "Unchurched is an observational term rather than legalistic Shirley. I do not intend it to be used as a judgemental term or as a stereotype. There are some people who go to church and some who have no interest in going to church. Our mission is to so into all the world. To a large extent, our Christian language is incomprehensible to those who have nothing to do with church or faith communities. We need to explore ways of interacting with those folk. And to those folk who say, "Preach the Gospel and let the Holy Spirit do the convincing.", my message is that maybe the Holy Spirit is trying to tell us to use a different language and we are not listening. I know I can be remarkably stubborn at times about doing things differently. I wonder why the messages to the churches in Revelation always ended with the phrase, "He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches!"

        Amen!(14)
        • Maurice, I understand, please give examples of the language to use to share the present truth with uncurched people as no one in this group has seemed to respond with their suggestions of how to do it.

          Amen!(3)
          • There is no single answer to this question because we are all individuals and the folk who come into our sphere of influence are all different. There are two starting points:

            1. Take an interest in other people. They are not just souls to be harvested, They are people to become friends with.
            2. Always be more willing to listen than to talk.

            I should add. Be patient. Most people are not converted in a day. The language of persistent friendship speaks loudly and allows time for the Holy Spirit to work through us.

            Amen!(12)
    • Hello Simeon - yes, I share the same concerns. Sabbath can become a 'law' unto itself; we can become legalistic and judgmental about the conduct of individuals regarding their observance or non-observance of Sabbath if it differs from our own; Pharisees had this very problem and Jesus called them out on this. Matt.12:1-12 - He pointed out: "...Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days."

      The fellowship meal after the worship service is an excellent time to spent with those who are looking for 'a meal' (hopefully being fed with the Bread of Life as well). I am sure that it will be well received in the community if we open our 'pot-luck' to all who would like to share with us in this meal! Joining us over a meal on Sabbath is extended to all, regardless if they joined the Sabbath worship time with us or come just for the meal!
      Going into the highways and byways is what we are called to do to look for those who might want to join us to sit at the Table of the Lord!

      After reading a recent comment from a fellow contributor to the blog, I became concerned that some might 'hide' behind the directive of 'keeping' the Sabbath; excusing their lack of desire to 'outreach' with the notion that God in the 'last days' will 'shake out' of other denominations those which are meant to join the Sabbath keeping church 'anyway'. This type of thinking is, to me, quite presumptuous - (as Maurice would put it as well).

      Do we really want to sit on our hands and wait until the 'harvest' falls into our laps? Shouldn't we be about our Father's business and 'go out' and work in the harvest? Obviously, yes - we should do that!
      If the church leadership has this 'default' spiritual mindset that Sabbath keepers can just 'wait until something happens' and not engage in the effort for it to happen, we are in danger to become a stagnant, dead church of Sabbath keepers.

      Amen!(10)
    • Nothing legalistic about sharing with someone what the Sabbath means to me, when it comes up. Just like our evangelistic meetings we present the Sabbath after unchurched have had ample opertunity to hear the Gospel and are still on board, so it is with our personal witness. Those of other faiths need a different approach most already know the Gospel. So when they say you and I are both believers in Christ as our risen Saviour, we are the both Christians. I see in that an invitation to tell them what the Seventh-day-Sabbath means to me. Not legalistic, just the apostle Paul's attitude, nothing ventured nothing gained. That may be as far as you get, and have to drop it, but continuing to establish them as friends. Maybe your encounter sows the seed, others have the opertunity to do the watering.

      Amen!(5)
  4. I find it fascinating to see the difference in Levticus 23 between the feast days and the 7th day Sabbaths!
    The feast days were like our public holidays, no money earning work, get together,remember and celebrate the powerful acts of the LORD in the past. These feasts were each celebrated once a year.

    The seventh day Sabbath is a weekly day of complete rest, it is so wonderful, you are absolved from doing any type of work at all without feeling that you are wasting your time! You have a whole 24 hours to remember and enjoy and copy the example of the LORD who created the world in six days and then rested from His work on the 7th day. Ex 20:8-11
    It is an amazing time to also remember and relax in the knowledge that He saves us and sanctifies us (makes us holy like Him) Deut 5:12-15, Ex 31:13, Eze 20:12,20
    It is a sign that we trust the LORD physically and spiritually to provide for us and to recreate our hearts in His image.
    The Sabbath is a weekly date with the LORD to get to know Him better and to develop a deeper relationship.

    Amen!(4)
  5. Can two walk together unless the agree

    This world is made up of two sets of people, those who love and accepted Jesus and those who do not. The message of the three angels are to command those who accepted Jesus and love him as their Lord, creator and redeemer is to go, live, and tells those who do not know about this loving Jesus. By so doing, those who do not know him, when they hear about him and the pleading of the Holy Spirit in their conscious minds will turn away from sinful ways and turn to him.
    But even some people who go to church on Saturday do not keep the sabbath. There is a difference between keeping the sabbath holy and going to church. I like Ezek 20:1-49. The same concept is in the story of gathering the manna on six days with double portion on the fifth day remains today. Many church goers have twisted the sabbath and what to do and what not to do to suit their agenda. But his words stands forever.

    Amen!(4)
  6. If it were natural for humans to do good, the world would need no country divisions or Constitutions. If it is natural for us to accept that, how much more it should be to accept God's principles of love for us? While we face rules without true understanding of their existance, they can become a burden, or just a repetition of a collective set of actions.

    Amen!(2)
  7. As I was reading today’s lesson, a little lightbulb went on in my head. I too grew up with the view of Sabbath as something I do to show what religion I am. But what if we looked at Sabbath a different way, like a birthday or a holiday. We celebrate birthdays to honor a family member, a dear friend, or even a President (if you live in the USA). It’s something I look forward to so I can spend time with my family or friends, in fact I’m eager to spend that day with them. Sabbath is the day God gave us, weekly, we don’t have to wait a year to spend that day with Him, we get to do it weekly. And just perhaps, when those that don’t know about Sabbath, see us enjoying ourselves on that day, they will want to understand more about that. It’s all about giving honor to the Creator of our universe. When Satan devised a way to get people to worship on a different day, he was really drawing a line in the sand or thumbing his nose at God. At least that is the way I view it.

    Amen!(5)
  8. Good day brethren. Even if all of the symbols and beasts and timelines of the book of Revelation were clearly understood, there is a reason why it still would not be a very popular book - and that reason is its content.

    The message of the book of Revelation cannot be easily distilled into the 'social gospel' of loving your fellowman, as is commonly found in all world religions. On the contrary, Revelation presents some hard truths that the modern mind finds hard to accept. The concept of an absolute power who has the authority to tell us how we should live and worship, the idea of two personal supreme beings engaged in a universal conflict, the idea of a one-world government using coercion to enforce worship, the fact that the world will be separated into two groups -- the lost and the saved, the membership of which will be determined by which day you worship, the concept of judgment and wrath upon the 'wicked', and the creation of a new heaven and earth, sound like conspiracy theories that many of the present generation are quick to dismiss. The fact is, the message of Revelation is a message of warning to be ready, even as time is fast running out. The challenge brethren, is to be able to present these unpopular truths to people whose sensibilities have been dulled by a post-modern mindset.

    We can choose to do so with humility and love, as we understand our privileged and peculiar calling for this present time. Let pray to God for wisdom and strength as we go forth as messengers to prepare the way of the Lord.

    Amen!(6)
  9. What is the everlasting Gospel? Rev. 14:6-7 - "And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting Gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred , and tongue, and people. (7) Saying with a loud voice, FEAR GOD, AND GIVE GLORY TO HIM; for the hour of his judgment is come: and WORSHIP HIM THAT MADE HEAVEN, AND EARTH, AND THE SEA, AND THE FOUNTAINS OF WATERS."

    The everlasting Gospel declares: 'Fear God, give Glory to Him and worship Him'! If we want to reduce the Gospel to its essence - this is its declaration! Matt.22:37 is the passage that directs us how to do this - by loving the Father with all our heart, mind and being. This ongoing, intimate, faith-based relationship with the Father will establish the new nature which acts in ways that honor God, give Him Glory and worships Him!

    John4:24; Genesis Chapter 2; Gen.3:8 - Loving God means to think of Him as our loving Creator Father, walk in His way; He placed us on this earth to have fellowship with Him in Spirit and in Truth - we worship Him in Spirit and Truth. He placed us in a relationship to Him as His Children, spiritual children that can commune with Him freely.

    Gen.2:8 Quoted from 'Bibletools' 'What the Bible says about Garden of Eden (from Forerunner Commentary) "The word Eden in Hebrew means "delight" or "enjoyment" - it was a garden of delight or enjoyment. ... In this case, God had in mind not merely an environment for vegetation, but for a relationship through fellowship - between God and Adam and Eve, who represented all of mankind. Spiritually, Eden symbolizes a rich and fertile place of unbroken fellowship."

    This is what we have lost - unbroken fellowship; this is what our Father seeks to re-establish. Just as it was in the Garden before the separation, He asks us to TRUST Him, to BELIEVE His Word and by FAITH to walk alongside Him again in His spiritual Garden of Eden.
    John4:14 - But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

    Amen!(4)
  10. I agree with Shirley that we should be weary of these designations of people as "unchurched" because of the negative connotation the word has. The designation "Unchurched people" has common usage particularly in the USA and Canada. Simply put it describes people who do not belong to or participate in a Church.These people are not necessarily atheists. Many may have tried church but left for one reason or another.You are quite correct again Shirley in your description of the Sabbath day.

    The focus of today's lesson is on the 3 angels message of Rev 14. It is a preparation message and the Lord wants us to warn the world that He's coming back. It's a critically important message for the entire world. God has given us as a church the trumpet of the 3 angels message to proclaim to the world. We are called to be the messengers who proclaim the message of the everlasting gospel before Jesus comes back. We are to preach to each and every person in the world. And we are called to proclaim in a loud voice the present truth. "Fear" in this text is reverential obedience to God (see Rev 15:4: Ecc 12:13-14) and we are called to give glory to Him. To me glory represents the character of God. Remember Moses asking to see God's glory? We are called to represent God's character to the world in our thoughts and actions. "Judgment" is a good thing to those who are covered in Christ's righteousness. It should not be feared by those who remain connected to Jesus because they remain covered. The text goes on to urge us to "Worship Him" - to me this is reminiscent of the 4th commandment. Remember that at the conclusion of Creation, Jesus rested on the Sabbath day. Further,the issue at the end of time is going to be who will we worship between God and satan? My choice is to worship God and keep His commandment

    Amen!(6)
  11. To understand this 1st angel, compare his message to the following "messages" given to sinners by God:

    "Be ye holy, for I am holy"
    "repent, and believe the gospel"
    "be ye therefore perfect as your father in heaven is perfect"
    "If any man will follow me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me"

    Can we see the same message in this 1st angel's message? The only unique aspect is that the hour of judgment "has come". This fact implies the fleetness of the time remaining to "halt between two opinions" of who we fear, glorify, and worship.

    Analyze the terms "fear God", "give glory", and "worship Him", and the similarity will become obvious.

    Amen!(1)
    • "Be ye holy, for I am holy"
      "repent, and believe the gospel"
      "be ye therefore perfect as your father in heaven is perfect"
      "If any man will follow me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me"

      What I see in common in these quotes is that God must accomplish them all in me because I absolutely, positively cannot. These are all gifts from God and are His work, not mine (e.g., "...that you may know that I, the Lord, sanctify you." Exodus 31:13; see also Philippians 2:13)

      The Gospel isn't about what we do, it's about what Jesus did and is doing for us and in us. Until we get that straight, how can we share it?

      Amen!(2)
    • Robert, the first angel proclaims the "everlasting gospel."

      As you must know, "gospel" actually means "good news."

      Is this what you see as "the gospel"?

      "Be ye holy, for I am holy"
      "repent, and believe the gospel"
      "be ye therefore perfect as your father in heaven is perfect"
      "If any man will follow me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me"

      Amen!(1)
      • Absolutely Inge. As Seig mentioned, we can only "be ye holy" or even "repent, and believe..." by the grace of God, which is good news for sinners who are otherwise powerless to do so(See Romans 7:13-8:24).

        Christ's commands are also promises. Would He tell us to do what cannot be accomplished? We should add to these the invitation of Matt 11:28-30, the prayer of Ps 51:10, and the promises of Jude 24 and Isa 1:18.

        I assume you and Seig are also acquainted with Phil 2:12,13.

        This is why I conclude that this 1st angel's message is no different except that the judgment now "has come". This angel is calling the world to be holy(see Psalm 29:2).

        Amen!(1)
        • Hello Robert - yes, the Light has come into the World through Jesus, the Christ who transferred to us the Word of God, the Father. With this event, the 'judgement has come'! The world has now access to the Father's message as given by His Son, Jesus the Christ. Now the time has come were man can 'perceive' the darkness of this world by the 'Light of the Gospel message' and follow the Heavenly Light to Salvation.
          Nothing 'new' is added in the book of Revelation that is not already contained in the Gospel of Jesus, the Son of God.

          Amen!(1)
          • Yes Brigitte, it is after all, the "everlasting gospel", and what the angel proclaims in this prophetic view is precisely this, if understood as defined by scripture.

            It is a call to be holy, for only holy beings can dwell with God. The gospel restores sinners through the "power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes"(Rom 1:16).

            Amen!(1)
        • It seems to me that your statements "lack in the Good News department,* as Sieg put it.

          Putting myself in the shoes of an unconverted person, I cannot see any Good News (aka Gospel) at all in your statements. What I do see are exhortations to repentance and holiness. That is all good and well, but why should I repent, and what does it mean to be "holy"? (Note to Brigitte, I am not asking for myself, but in the voice of an unconverted person.)

          It is good to remember that it was not John the Baptist ("repent and believe") who preached the gospel. He prepared the way (among biblically literate people) for the gospel to be proclaimed by Christ and His disciples. And in your statement, Robert, you quoted "repent and believe the gospel" which, by definition cannot be "the gospel," since it references "the gospel."

          Can you come up with something that sounds a bit more like "Good News" to those who do not know our Creator God?

          Amen!(1)
      • Hello Inge - Though you addressed the question to Robert, please allow me to respond as well, since he has the same understanding of the Gospel as I have.
        My comments on September 14th speak to Jesus' Gospel, what it is and what it is for. You might consider reading it to help answer the question. Jesus declared to love God with all our heart, mind and being! When we do this, when we deny our 'self', His Holy Spirit will have the freedom to create in us the new 'Self', His Image.

        The Gospel was given for a purpose. It is not just a message for the ears, but it is to renew our mind, heart and whole being - to bring us back into fellowship with the Father; to grow in us the 'new' nature which is meant to have spiritual fellowship between the Father and His creature - 'man'.

        Yes, we are saved by the Faith of Jesus'! We trust the Word of God, His Holy Spirit, to make available to us the 'Water' and the 'Bread' as our spiritual food; to build up in us, to establish our new, spiritual nature. Rev.22:17

        Amen!(1)
        • Hi Bridgette. I read your message several times and it sounded like a lot of "Adventist speak" but lacked in the "good news" department.

          Our gospel message is polluted with legalism, verbosity and ambiguous words that make no sense to nonbelievers... to the point that the "good news" is lost.

          The Gospel in 5 words: Jesus died for my sins.

          Clarified: I was deservedly on death row and Christ took my place and died my (eternal) death for me. If that isn't amazing enough, He gave me His perfect life in place of my wicked life, thus fitting me for heaven and everlasting life with Him. Praise God. What love, what amazing life-changing love!

          I'll repeat what I said earlier. The Gospel isn't about what we do, it's about what Jesus did and is doing for us and in us. THAT is good news.

          Amen!(2)
          • Hello Sieg - I assume that you were at one time a non-believer. Jesus’ Gospel is the Way, the Truth and the Light, and no one comes to the Him unless the Father draws him.
            Thank God that he opened your eyes that you can see! Yes, we believe in the message of the resurrected, living Christ pointing out to us the way to the Father from hence He came !

            Amen!(0)
      • Inge, you seem to have a very different view of these quotes from scripture than I do. I see them as very good news for sinners. I see them as an invitation to "come unto me, and I will give you Rest". To be invited to become a "partaker of the Divine nature" by God is the best thing a sinner could be told. There is nothing "bad" in these invitations from God to man.

        Amen!(1)
        • Robert, I referenced putting myself in the shoes of someone who does not know God. These messages, while understandable to us, need to be translated into a language that the unconverted can understand. Just repeating Bible texts doesn't seem suitable in this context. Jesus set us a different example.

          Amen!(2)
          • I believe I am quoting some of Jesus’ examples. Keep in mind John 16:8.

            Yes, we must put these truths in a relevant context by the leading of the Holy Spirit. He knows best what anyone needs to hear.

            My original comment was regarding the meaning of the 1st angel.

            Amen!(0)
  12. The message of Revelation 14.6-7, which provides a picture of an angel/messenger flying over the world with the "everlasting gospel" to share invites us to think of what the "everlasting gospel" actually is.

    Is it a prescribed set of words/definition, or is it possible that the "everlasting gospel" is shared in different ways and different words in different circumstances?

    On the surface, at least, the words of the angel do not contain "Good News" for non-believers. Does the message assume that the "Good News" is actually being preached, and that it is preached in the context of the judgment, rather than the words themselves being the "Good News"?

    Amen!(2)
    • Hello, Inge - Reading the provided passage Rev.14:6-7 in your comment, the answer to your question ("what the "everlasting Gospel" actually is), is contained in verse 7. It speaks directly to the content of the everlasting gospel mentioned in verse 6.
      Referring to the angel flying in the midst of heaven having the everlasting gospel, John says: "Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgement is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters."
      This is the everlasting Gospel: 'Fear God, give Glory to Him, worship Him.' This is also the "Good News", because it points to the Father's Messenger and His Gospel.

      These two verses speak directly to the heart of Jesus' Gospel - His Gospel points to the Father with everything it touches. The world is in spiritual darkness and needs to know that there is a Father God and that Jesus is His Son; that the message from the Father was placed into Jesus' hands by His Holy Spirit, and that all who believe and follow/do what the Word of God - Jesus' Gospel to mankind - speaks about, will be saved!

      Amen!(1)
      • Brigitte, let me try to paraphrase the "gospel" you suggest as it sounds to the ears of a great many in North America:

        Fear God, and give glory to him; because he's going to condemn you to eternal torture if you don't do it.

        In the Muslim world, it might sound like this:

        Fear Christian god who whose people eat all manner of filthy animals, including pigs, and promote lawlessness and homosexuality because he'll torture you if you don't.

        What does our message have to offer secular people of North America or the Muslims of this world?

        We need to bring the message down to earth in language people understand. And the message needs to be given by people who live the Good News, as Maurice has suggested.

        (I believe the gospel is the foundation on which the message is announced. That means we primarily need to bring the Good News to the world with the additional message that the time for this world is coming to an end - which is something even secular people are beginning to suspect.)

        Amen!(1)
        • Inge, what did Jesus do? He preached the Gospel and said to His followers to spread this very same Gospel and follow Him!
          No one comes to Jesus unless the Father draws him! The Word of God is the Water and the Bread of life! Do you want to change His Word and tickle the ears rather than stir the soul?
          Jesus always demonstrated the life of the Father’s Gospel through his actions as well as His words - they are synonymous! And we do the same - we live the Gospel message!
          The examples you gave of ‘secular’ people are extreme. There are many others still willing to engage with you in a conversation where you can clarify the misrepresentations or misunderstandings.
          “Those that have ears to hear” - will hear what the Spirit is telling the church! Jesus in his time found the same resistance to the plain word of God that is found in our time - maybe different reasons, but resistance never the less. There are always those who ‘don’t want to hear the Truth, or want it dressed up in more ‘comfortable’ attire.

          Amen!(1)
          • Brigitte, you repeat the word Gospel, but I asked you what it is. We know that the word means "good news."
            So what is the good news that Jesus demonstrated and preached?
            I assure you that the example I gave of secular people is not extreme. That is the perception people have of Christian teaching.

            Amen!(1)
        • Maybe for secular people we need to start with Is there life after death? If there is, does everyone live forever? Who decides who does? Would you want to live forever?

          Amen!(1)
          • Thanks, Shirley, for actually attempting to answer the question.

            Yes, life after death might be a place to start. I get the feeling that the vast majority of the world's population has either a distinct or indistinct feeling about life after death. I'm not sure what one would do for those convinced that there is no life after death. What could we say/do? But certainly we can address what kind of life after death, and is it desirable? What kind of God decides?

            I think in America today, we might also start by addressing people's felt needs - need for peace, need for security, need for hope, need for health. I think we've been trying to do that as a church for a long time, but I think we haven't tied that closely enough to the person of Christ and His/God's character.

            It seems to me that the core of the Good News is that God is Good, that God loves each of us supremely. That He loves each individual so much that He would die for just one if s/he were the only person alive. Isn't that what Christ demonstrated in His life? Isn't that what He demonstrated by healing the diseases of those around Him, raising the dead, feeding the hungry, comforting the sad and blessing the children? He invited those listening to Him to "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest." (Matt 11:28)

            The Three Angels' messages build on that by announcing that the end of this world is near. They add the call to worship the Creator God, who is also Christ Himself. This is significant in the context of the Sabbath becoming the final test. It is the seal of the only true Creator God, in contrast to the false gods of this world.

            I like to make things practical, rather than merely theological. 😉

            I also believe that the message, 'Come out of her, my people!" may be carried more by demonstration of a Christ-like character than by words. People need to see that God's plan works. They need to see that God is good. They need to see the contrast between God's people and Babylon to be moved to "come out of her."

            Amen!(1)
    • Inge, keep in mind how Jesus taught sinners, and yes, it varied according to the need and the Spirit's leading. Notice the message to Nicodemus compared to the woman at the well, yet the message at its core was/is the same.

      We also cannot forget that the Holy Spirit goes before us and brings sinners to conviction, if we soft pedal the message just to be nice, do we really help people? This is not to say we must be direct and to the point in a harsh manner, but a loving appeal spoken correctly may be very direct.

      We must also realize the context of this message in Revelation 14, which will take place in the environment depicted in Revelation 13.

      This is not about legalism vs good news, but rather, this is about Truth. Present Truth, in the time to come shortly when the questions will be clear and both sides in direct conflict. People will want/need direct answers and sound reasoning. Studying the methods of Jesus and praying for the gift of the Holy Spirit will give us our best chance of reaching souls.

      Amen!(1)
  13. Inge - I answered the question "what is the Gospel" in my first reply to you. The Gospel and the Good news are also synonymous. Rev.14:7 - The angel said (abbreviated): 'Fear (honor) God, give Glory to Him, worship Him'."
    Jesus' Gospel is 'Good news' because it is Truth received from God the Father. The 'good news' is that man has a Father who seeks those who are lost to come back to Him; that He gave them His messenger Jesus, who be came His Son indwelled by His Spirit of Truth and our Savior.
    The World did not recognize Him, so they slew Him. But God through His Spirit raised Him up again to show that we, who believe as Jesus believed, will be raised up in the last day as well.
    This 'Good news' is not 'good' because it speaks something pleasant - it is good because it is God's Truth - giving HIS Light to this dark world! It is the Creator God's Truth to a dying world; good news to them who seek Salvation from this world; that saves those that believe and follow His Word and walk in His Light; it is good even though it speaks about drastic, life and world-destroying consequences for those that reject the live-saving Truth.

    Amen!(1)
  14. We were born in slavery to sin and all fall short of God's standard (Job 15:14-16; Psalm 14:2-3; Isaiah 1:4-6).

    We are all unclean and polluted (Isaiah 64:6; Jeremiah 17:9). We were born that way (Psalm 51:5). When we insert ourselves into the Gospel, it becomes unclean and polluted by self.

    Although we have a choice to accept Christ's righteousness or reject it, we do not have a choice whether to sin or to be righteous (Romans 7:15-24). Thus, we need a Savior.

    The Gospel is all about how the Savior redeemed us at the cross... how He is changing us to be more like Him... and how we will be coheirs in His inheritance (Romans 8:17) as adopted children of God (Galatians 4:4–5; Romans 8:15–16).

    Amen!(2)

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