Saturday, June 21, 2008

Mark, Chapter 12

1 ¶ And he began to speak unto them by parables. A certain man planted a vineyard, and set an hedge about it, and digged a place for the winefat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country.

This is the nation of Israel He to which He is referring. The husbandmen are Israel’s rulers.

Isaiah 5:1 ¶ Now will I sing to my wellbeloved a song of my beloved touching his vineyard. My wellbeloved hath a vineyard in a very fruitful hill: 2 And he fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes.
3 And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt me and my vineyard. 4 What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it? wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes? 5 And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard: I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be eaten up; and break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down: 6 And I will lay it waste: it shall not be pruned, nor digged; but there shall come up briers and thorns: I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it. 7 For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.

God expects fruit when He plants something. Here the church is speaking in type.

Song of Solomon 4:16 Awake, O north wind; and come, thou south; blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out. Let my beloved come into his garden, and eat his pleasant fruits.

Song of Solomon 6:11 I went down into the garden of nuts to see the fruits of the valley, and to see whether the vine flourished, and the pomegranates budded.

Song of Solomon 7:12 Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see if the vine flourish, whether the tender grape appear, and the pomegranates bud forth: there will I give thee my loves.

Song of Solomon 8:11 Solomon had a vineyard at Baalhamon; he let out the vineyard unto keepers; every one for the fruit thereof was to bring a thousand pieces of silver. 12 My vineyard, which is mine, is before me: thou, O Solomon, must have a thousand, and those that keep the fruit thereof two hundred.

It’s easy to knock ancient Israel for not producing fruit. What fruit have you produced?

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.

Your works will mean nothing without the fruit of the Spirit.

John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

2 And at the season he sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruit of the vineyard.

The husbandmen in type could also be likened to modern day preachers. They are making a mess of the vineyard.

3 And they caught him, and beat him, and sent him away empty.
4 And again he sent unto them another servant; and at him they cast stones, and wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully handled.

This is a history of the nation of Israel literally and doctrinally and all the prophets you can read about in the Old Testament as they try to keep Israel straight.

5 And again he sent another; and him they killed, and many others; beating some, and killing some.
6 Having yet therefore one son, his wellbeloved, he sent him also last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son.
7 But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours.

They knew what they were doing. When Jesus, God the Son, God in the flesh came, He was to be killed.

8 And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard.
9 What shall therefore the lord of the vineyard do? he will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto others.
The mystery of the Church Age is that the spiritual kingdom of God will be turned over to the Church for a time.
Ephesians 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ: 10 To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God, 11 According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord: 12 In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.
10 And have ye not read this scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner:
Psalm 118:22 The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.
Jesus is the cornerstone of the building and you can’t build a physical, literal kingdom of heaven on earth without His bodily presence without working against Him.
11 This was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?

Psalm 118:23 This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvellous in our eyes.

12 And they sought to lay hold on him, but feared the people: for they knew that he had spoken the parable against them: and they left him, and went their way.

Some preachers, by this verse’s statement, claim that the Jews knew Jesus was the Messiah, the very Son of God, which is God in the flesh, born in human form. However, they knew He claimed to be equal with God but were they still not ignorant of the truth of His claims? How then, could Jesus plea on their behalf from the Cross and Peter’s statement in Acts have any meaning?

Luke 23:34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

Acts 3:17 And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.

I think that clearly they did not believe Him but saw Him as a threat to their position.

13 ¶ And they send unto him certain of the Pharisees and of the Herodians, to catch him in his words.

The fundamentalists and the politically oriented religious party try to catch Him. Just imagine what it looked like to God when Pensacola Christian College testified against Kent Hovind, consorting with the IRS to imprison an evangelist who had had great success in debating against evolution. PCC and the Federal Government are far apart in their beliefs but united in attacking someone working for Christ.

14 And when they were come, they say unto him, Master, we know that thou art true, and carest for no man: for thou regardest not the person of men, but teachest the way of God in truth: Is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar, or not?

Here is the question. Do we pay taxes or not? Is not the authority unlawful and isn’t the IRS illegal according to our Constitution? Wasn’t the amendment that permitted taxing our income the way it is done gotten by lying and corruption?

15 Shall we give, or shall we not give? But he, knowing their hypocrisy, said unto them, Why tempt ye me? bring me a penny, that I may see it.
16 And they brought it. And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? And they said unto him, Caesar’s.
17 And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.

Here is your answer. Don’t refuse to pay your taxes and use God as an excuse. You register your church as a tax exempt organization so you can get your people to donate money to your church organization so that they can deduct it from their taxes. You make your church an agent of the state and, in essence, ask the IRS’ permission for certain allowances, and then you complain. Once you make yourself an agent of the state you have no right to complain about the state (government).

What is Caesar’s? Anything he wants to take. If you don’t like the tax code, work to change it. Don’t refuse to pay. Don’t shoot the tax collector.

What is God’s?

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.

These aren’t taxable.

What is not Caesar’s? Worship of the king or of the state is not Caesar’s. This is something American Christians seem to be misguided on. Your children belong to God. They are not Caesar’s. You are responsible for their education in God and if you surrender them to the state you are wicked and worship the state. The state has no regard for God. If you turn your children over to the state you are willing to have the Godless civil religion indoctrinate your children against God.

Pay your taxes, obey the laws that don’t go against your commission to preach the Risen Saviour to the lost and educate your children in Christ, pray privately, and read your Bible, or display the fruits of the spirit.

18 ¶ Then come unto him the Sadducees, which say there is no resurrection; and they asked him, saying,
19 Master, Moses wrote unto us, If a man’s brother die, and leave his wife behind him, and leave no children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.

What a bunch of liars? These are like the modern liberals who think everything is figurative in the Bible and support many left wing political ideals such as homosexual marriage and abortion. They are intent on cleaning up the waiting room to Hell with their own beliefs. They see only the temporal, the flesh, unless they are dying or in trouble.

20 Now there were seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and dying left no seed.

When someone uses extremes to justify their convictions you can be sure they are phonies and hypocrites. People do this quite often when objecting to the Bible’s clear statements.

21 And the second took her, and died, neither left he any seed: and the third likewise.
22 And the seven had her, and left no seed: last of all the woman died also.
23 In the resurrection therefore, when they shall rise, whose wife shall she be of them? for the seven had her to wife.

Remember, they don’t believe in the resurrection. This is similar to those modernists who mock a Bible Believer’s stance against homosexual behavior by quoting Leviticus and then comparing the admonition there to the ancient Hebrews against homosexuals to wearing a beard and a robe and not mixing seed. They are fools and stupid people. Pay them no attention. The Sadducees did not survive the destruction of the temple and the modern fakers won’t survive the Great Tribulation.

24 And Jesus answering said unto them, Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, neither the power of God?
25 For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as the angels which are in heaven.

Angels always appear in the form of men. There is no institution of marriage between the residents of the New Jerusalem. The angels are not sexless beings. They always appear as men.

See Genesis 6:4.

Genesis 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.

I’ve already shown that the “sons of God” are represented by angels, which is an appearance of something or someone; either a person, a nation, a church or something that is somewhere else.
26 And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?
27 He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err.

Here, Christ blasts their lack of belief in a resurrection. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are alive. They will be resurrected bodily.

28 ¶ And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?
29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

First step. There is one God.

30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

You must first love God with everything you have. That is the foundation upon which everything else is predicated.

31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

This is the second commandment. You can’t please God by denying Him and then going off to do good works, to save children in Africa, etc. etc. You must first love God, then your neighbor. I spent fourteen years as a Christian before I understood that I did not love God. It took my daughter’s suicide note to make me realize that she, in her agony, could make a profession that I, who remained alive, could not.

Then, later, I read John Wesley’s sermon, “The Almost Christian”. Now, I am certain that I was saved by Christ back on March 19, 1986 but, like most Christians, I was immediately taken prisoner of war by Satan in full collusion with my flesh. I was useless. My daughter had received Christ as her Saviour on October 7, 1990 but I had spiritually neglected her and starved her. As God’s representative in her life I had failed to ever point toward God. To her, as she cried out, God had abandoned her, in spite of her love for Him. That was because I had spiritually abandoned her. It is a great evil that “Christian” parents commit. It was her death that woke me up. What a horrible price to pay, what a horrible wakeup call. Don’t need God to break you in order to understand.

First, God, then others. Your “self” is not mentioned.

32 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he:
33 And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

Notice understanding is substituted for mind. Loving others is far more important than ritual observance. Many people never miss church but have no relationship with Christ at all.

Deuteronomy 11:13 And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul,

Deuteronomy 13:3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Leviticus 19:18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD.

1Samuel 15:22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

Micah 6:6 ¶ Wherewith shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old? 7 Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? 8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

34 And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question.

This man is close, but notice that he is not there. He has answered discreetly and not been deliberately argumentative and foolish like the others before him. Now, the intellectual elite are going to stop trying to trick Him with questions.

35 ¶ And Jesus answered and said, while he taught in the temple, How say the scribes that Christ is the Son of David?
36 For David himself said by the Holy Ghost, The LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.

Psalm 110:1 A Psalm of David. The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.
The LORD is God the Father, the great Jehovah.

37 David therefore himself calleth him Lord; and whence is he then his son? And the common people heard him gladly.

How can David be the father of the messiah and call Him, Lord? Jesus Christ is of the lineage of David, therefore his son, but that is impossible, if Christ is his Lord. They didn’t have a father call his son, Lord. So the only possible conclusion is that Jesus Christ is also Jehovah. The Messiah is God manifest in the flesh. The Son of God reveals the great God born into human form.

The common people; rednecks, hicks, whatever racial or cultural slur you want to use, wanted truth.

38 And he said unto them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces,
39 And the chief seats in the synagogues, and the uppermost rooms at feasts:
40 Which devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayers: these shall receive greater damnation.

Religions that make long prayers for the dead in order to get money from widows are still with us today. Do you know any religious people who receive money to pray for the dead today to get them out of a place they invented called purgatory?

41 ¶ And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much.

Christ is watching how people give, not just what they give.

42 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing.
43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury:
44 For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

They were paid daily for their work, according to the Law. She gave in all she had, her whole income for the day, in the offering. The poor lived from day to day. The equivalent would be today if you were to quietly give your savings, all your 401K, stocks and bonds, etc. etc. to God’s work. This is not calling you to do exactly that but is set for you an example. The rich give a portion and still have plenty left. She, trusting in God, gave all she had. It is something to consider.

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