Passover not only highlights God’s faithfulness, but it also points to His Son, who was the final sin offering. For this reason, God commanded the Israelites to keep the Passover from generation to generation. This time of year reminds us of the Lord’s faithfulness to His words.
Passover is noteworthy because it symbolizes the crucifixion of the Savior, the ultimate Passover Lamb who freed us from sin. Paul writes to the disciples, “The Christ, our Passover, has also been sacrificed.” He accomplished the sacrificial system’s requirements by laying down his life. All of the Pesach lambs pointed to Christ as the supremely pure Lamb. Our sins were put on Jesus in the same way that a Jewish person’s sins were placed on a faultless lamb as a sacrifice by the high priest – both instances involving the faultless dying for the sinful. Those who apply the blood of Jesus Christ to their temple’s “doorposts” and “lintels” will be safeguarded from eternal death, just as those who applied the Passover lamb’s blood to their dwellings were rescued from death in the Book of Exodus. As a manner, Passover serves as a reminder of God’s faithfulness in delivering His chosen people from Egyptian slavery. As well as in delivering us all from sinfulness through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
This time of year is significant for us all because it commemorates the Passion of Christ. It is where we start learning about the way, the truth, and the life. We have the very same accessibility to the Father through His Spirit that Jesus did, after He rose on the third day. If only we could accept all of the Messiah’s teachings to find a home in our hearts. Every word of God gives life and without knowing them, we will inevitably fall short. Did you prepare for the Passover?
He is risen from the grave! Look, He is alive! This excellent news is much more welcome and reassuring than ever before after a year defined by so much agony and suffering. The tale of Passover begins with a subject that has recently affected many of us: death. And dying by crucifixion at Calvary, where Jesus compassionately made penance for our transgressions, allowing us to experience a new and genuinely abundant life in Christ.
Jesus shocked his followers by returning from the dead 3 days following his mortality, defeating death and spreading the great news of salvation to the entire world. The gospel has become the good news of this passion, burial, and resurrection, which we honor and proclaim throughout the world. We have indeed been freed from the bonds of sin, therefore we eagerly and joyfully join Jesus Christ in his mission of creating disciples of all nations.
And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you. And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word. And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him. – Matthew 28:5-9.
Within the simplicity of a single moment, our eyes can be opened. “For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.” – Ezekiel 36:24-27.
I’ve always been fascinated by Jesus’ tale about the lost sheep of Israel. Why wouldn’t the shepherd just take his loss and ignore the one sheep that was most likely already devoured by the wolves? Plus, that shepherd may have jeopardized the lives of the other 99 sheep. Some who understood that narrative relate and were likely to have had a similar reaction to mine.
However, there are a few assumptions that need to be addressed. Foremost, if we disregard the lost sheep and continue to lose one sheep at a time, the sheepfold will soon be empty, and it will leave us wondering what happened. Is this something you’ve heard before? Every single person who doesn’t know the Gospel is a source of concern for us. We may feel constrained by what we can do to entice that individual, but we must take action. That’s the enthusiasm for the truth that Jesus desires from all of us.
This brings us to the following point. We’re not looking for that stray sheep, just for some random reason. Rather, we are really seeking to keep that lamb from the perils of the wild, the loneliness of being without the Shepherd, and the world’s deceptive allures and temptations. We also want to communicate the magnificent revelation of Christ Jesus, to whom we are called and through whom He wants everyone to be rescued. In other terms, we search out the lost because it is critical. Life and salvation are on the line.
There’s one more thing to think about. We want that long-lost friend or relative to return to the Gospel because we love and need that person, just as we know God does. That person’s distinctiveness and human dignity are great blessings to our community, and we would be significantly less without him or her. The Church is a call to all to come together, and Jesus requires our bodies and voices to make that happen. We recognize the individual’s freedom as a gift of God, which implies that anyone can truly say “no” to Christ.
These are formidable obstacles for Christians who have not received adequate training in evangelization, or sharing our religion with others. We also don’t want to offend our relatives, friends, or neighbors. We must discover ways to bear testimony to Christ, whether via prayer, good example, or simply loving one another. The best way is to lead by word and deed and not by word alone.
“Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.” – James 2:21-24. Scarcely a righteous man will be saved, my brothers and sisters. Let us find all the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
Let us take a moment to consider, if the LORD is the one true God, who are all of the other gods? Are they all of the things that we physically make with our hands? Is it our televisions, computers, and the stuff that many of us “worship?” Or, is it something far more simple, something easier to comprehend? Yet, in a way, it is the hardest thing to believe. The Bible tells us in Hebrews 10:38, “Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.”
What does it mean to draw back from something or someone? Is it a refusal to believe or do what we are seeing or hearing? Could it be being told an idea with truth to back it up, yet, we still refuse to accept it? How about knowing to do something and just not doing it? In my own Christian walk of faith, I have stalled out many times in my own spiritual growth. I have fell over in disbelief, pain, and agony. Yet, I never fled from the truth. In the Book of Zechariah, we are told about the coming calamity that the world is facing in chapter 13. Let us look at a few of these verses. “And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.” What does it mean to be brought through the fire? Consider the words of Paul once again, “But if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.”
What is it about fire that can make it somewhat unpleasant? Well, it burns, quite literally. Most of us know of the story of Jacob and how he wrestled with the LORD, the one true God. At the end of it all, he came out with a limp. He is one, who pushed into the fire and didn’t draw back. In this world of around 8 billion people, picture the suffering of those in a third world country. Picture the suffering of those in Ukraine. Consider those in Russia who have no part or interest in what the government is doing. All of these levels of suffering are common to every man. Our gas prices have risen, the cost of most things have significantly increased these last couple of years. Is any of this similar to wrestling with GOD? It appears to me that it is not.
The problems that we see in this world leaves us with a choice to make. We can begin to get angry, bitter, or discontent over it all. Or, we can begin to ask questions such as, “None of this is making any sense?” “Why is all of this even happening?” “Why is GOD allowing this to take place?” In order for the LORD to receive us, we need to become as a little child. We need to seek Him, intimately. We need to know Him. And, it comes at a cost. We, as Jacob, will end up coming out even similar. As we push into the truth, many things that we may see or hear may be hard to believe. At those moments our response should not be such as, “no it couldn’t be.” It needs to be similar to, “Father, I trust you, lead me through this.” A little child is humble and they are ready to learn and listen. They typically don’t get angry when being taught or disciplined by their parents.
When being instructed, a child may at times stand there in fear, trembling. Why do you think that the Bible says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom?” At this point in time, seeing all that is happening, I don’t want to be a part of the two thirds that gets cut off and dies, I would rather be a part of the one third that continues to be tried and purified in the furnace of affliction. I will now backtrack to Zachariah:1-3. “In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness. And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land.”
What are the idols and why do they have names? “But they are altogether brutish and foolish: the stock is a doctrine of vanities. Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman, and of the hands of the founder: blue and purple is their clothing: they are all the work of cunning men. But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation. Thus shall ye say unto them, The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth, and from under these heavens.” – Jeremiah 10:8-11.
May the LORD, the only true GOD, bless you and keep you as one tried and purified through the furnace of affliction. “Will a man leave the snow of Lebanon which cometh from the rock of the field? or shall the cold flowing waters that come from another place be forsaken? Because my people hath forgotten me, they have burned incense to vanity, and they have caused them to stumble in their ways from the ancient paths, to walk in paths, in a way not cast up; To make their land desolate, and a perpetual hissing; every one that passeth thereby shall be astonished, and wag his head. I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy; I will shew them the back, and not the face, in the day of their calamity.”
There are numbers of Scriptures on Lift Up A Banner that tie the way, the truth, and the life, together in an easy to follow format. Please take a moment to go over each lesson one by one. Return to the first post by going all the way back, to the beginning. Speaking on complete abstinence, there are more teachings on this site than any other. And the Scriptures back up this claim, if you only take the time to seek it out with a prayerful heart. Become as a child. Literally. Look over the homepage’s lessons and go through the Bible study. It starts with the truth as a foundation and afterwards, moves on to the way and the life. Take a look at the ten free Christian eBooks available. Take the time to study every one of the videos. Take a look at the other videos on the YouTube channel that aren’t available on this website. Your faith will grow, your eyes will be opened, and your hearing will be restored.
As much as I want you to believe everything you see and hear, we must each do our part with the Lord and the Spirit. You will see that what I have been saying is correct if you do so. The entirety of the Church is constructed on the words of Jesus Christ. We may not ever find everlasting life if we do not comprehend Jesus’ teachings, even all of them. How can we claim to know Him if we don’t abide in them?
“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish.” – Luke 14:28-30.
“Whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.” “For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.” Are you able to receive it, brothers and sisters? The Spirit is speaking to you. “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” – John 6:63.
How does the LORD heal our broken hearts and bind up our wounds? Today will be something simple. All that is required on your part, is belief. We will look at the Original Hebrew meaning of a few of these words, and you will either choose to believe it, or dismiss it. If I open up the Webster dictionary to see the meaning of a word, whatever it says, is what it means. As we look at Psalm 147, I ask that you do the same. Whatever the Bible says is the truth. Whatever Jesus says is light. Will you come to the Light so that your deeds may be reproved? Or, will you continue to dwell in darkness?
“Praise ye the LORD: for it is good to sing praises unto our God; for it is pleasant; and praise is comely. The LORD doth build up Jerusalem: he gathereth together the outcasts of Israel. He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds. He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names. Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite. The LORD lifteth up the meek: he casteth the wicked down to the ground.” – Psalms 147:1-6. What is the Hebrew translation for wounds and stars? Remember, we learn of the simplicity that is Christ. Although, what is it? It is pretty simple. Whatever the Bible says, is what it means. The Bible doesn’t lie. The Bible is the only truth in this world. For something to be true, it has to mean what it says. If we become as a little child and let go of our preconceived notions and personal beliefs, the Word of GOD will be opened to us. Are you willing to do so? Are you willing to believe the Living Word? Are you ready to trust in the Light of Life?
OK friends, I am now handing you the Dictionary of Life. Become as a child and believe what you are looking at. The following is Psalm 147:1-5 with the original language and the KJV Bible, using a program called e-sword. It is nothing more than the King James version with the Strong’s Concordance in an easy point and click format. The two words that we will look at are “wounds,” broken down to the root. As well as the word, “stars.”
What did we just gaze upon? What understanding did you just obtain? Why does the Bible tell us that the word wounds means idols? I thought that the LORD God told us not to make any idols? Why does it say to fabricate or fashion something? How come it says, ‘displease, wound, hurt, or worship? Why does Isaiah 53 say this, “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”
Remember, the Bible is true and in it contains no lie. Why is the translation for stars, princes? Who are the prodigal son’s who took their inheritance to go to a far away land and waste it on riotous living? What if it wasn’t a parable but the truth? What if we left our Father in Heaven, came to the earth, and wasted our eternal life by coming here? Why do we need to be redeemed? If you truly are redeemed, are you not getting something back that you had lost? What did we all do? Why did the LORD God have to come here in the likeness of sinful flesh and pay the penalty for us? How come we are all facing an eternity of eternal torment? Everything that you have been taught is a lie. All that you have been led to believe is false. “Arise O’ sleeper, wake up from the dead, and Christ shall give thee life.”
Are you ready for your eyes and ears to be opened? Would you like your spiritual blindness to be cured? Would you like to read the Bible and understand it without others having to teach you? Both Jesus and John taught repentance. That truth applies to us, even today. The Gospel of Repentance is a good place to further your understanding while considering the words that you just gained the understanding of. May you continually be blessed in your spiritual growth in the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father, but by Him.
The Bible tells us in 1 John, “But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.” The Bible is a genuinely extraordinary book. It’s breathtaking. It completely changes you from within. Years ago, when I first began my quest to grasp God’s Word, I felt like I was continually falling short. I visited a number of different churches, as well as teachers and ministers. One thing, though, kept resonating throughout my soul, to the core of my being. “This is not the way.” As a result, I was continuously falling short. I was constantly let down. I never had the inner peace that the Bible speaks about. Was there something I was overlooking? What exactly could it be that I wasn’t getting right? What blunders did I make? I ended up putting my confidence and belief in people rather than the Lord and His truths.
I had a brother, whom I still love, explain a lot of realities about the Bible to me. Even so, the Spirit continued to prompt me and left things to question. So here I was, with more Biblical insight and spiritual understanding than I could have ever imagined. Yet, I never stopped listening to that still small voice within. “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.” – Psalm 23:1-5
“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” – Psalm 119:105. Here is the continuation of my testimony from August 2021, with more internal links for better understanding. Read more here, Lie Down In Green Pasture. Ye need not any man teach you, my friends.
“The Kingdom of GOD is within you…” Your body is the temple of GOD. Visualize that while reading the following from 2 Chronicles 7. Thus Solomon finished the house of the LORD, and the king’s house: and all that came into Solomon’s heart to make in the house of the LORD, and in his own house, he prosperously effected. And the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said unto him, I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for an house of sacrifice. If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place. For now have I chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there for ever: and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually. And as for thee, if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, and do according to all that I have commanded thee, and shalt observe my statutes and my judgments; Then will I stablish the throne of thy kingdom, according as I have covenanted with David thy father, saying, There shall not fail thee a man to be ruler in Israel. But if ye turn away, and forsake my statutes and my commandments, which I have set before you, and shall go and serve other gods, and worship them; Then will I pluck them up by the roots out of my land which I have given them; and this house, which I have sanctified for my name, will I cast out of my sight, and will make it to be a proverb and a byword among all nations. “The Kingdom of GOD is within you.”
Remember, my friends, “Your body is the temple of GOD.” And this house, which is high, shall be an astonishment to every one that passeth by it; so that he shall say, Why hath the Lord done thus unto this land, and unto this house? And it shall be answered, Because they forsook the Lord God of their fathers, which brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, and laid hold on other gods, and worshipped them, and served them: therefore hath he brought all this evil upon them. – 2 Chronicles 7.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God. – John 3. What are your deeds, my friends?