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August 20, 2021 6:00 am
Concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write you yourselves are taught by God to love one another how the Greek word, therefore brotherly love this Phila Adelphia Philadelphia is a strong love, good love is not that spiritual mighty love of God, but it is a good love.
None the less. Much to say much to do with this type of love in our lives. This is cross reference radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville.
Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of first Thessalonians. Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about cross reference radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching, but for now, here's Pastor Rick in first Thessalonians chapter 4 with today's edition of cross reference radio open our Bibles to first Thessalonians letter chapter 4.
We will resume at the ninth verse contrasting what the Scripture says in the prophecy of Daniel with something that is said in the Revelation, and I'll read first Daniel there. Daniel says, as he is getting this vision concerning the end times in this particular part of the vision is concerned with Antichrist who is to come. Antichrist will start off antichrist, but he will end up the beast, then he will be finished off, but there it says in Daniel chapter 8 verse 25 through his cunning shall cause deceit to prosper under his rule and he shall exalt himself in his heart he shall destroy many in their prosperity. He shall even rise against the Prince of princes, but he shall be broken without human means that description applies to politicians particular one today. And then there is the statement in Revelation 6 and I will pause to say, I do believe Antichrist is alive. I also believe the church will not know who he is. We will be taken out of here before he is revealed, for he is turned loose what the stage is set and here in Revelation 6 and the second verse we read and I looked, and behold a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow and a crown was given to him and he went out conquering and to conquer. And so there again is Antichrist coming on the scene.
He comes in as an aggressive, he comes with weapons is a false PC brings violence is in his heart.
What does all this have to do with what we're doing now what does the antichrist and referencing these prophecies concerning him, have to do with verse by verse analysis of Proverbs and then verse by verse analysis of Thessalonians.
Well, I think it is just this, that ministry goes on in the midst of prophetic revelation and fulfillment.
We, as Christians, yes, we certainly want to know what the Bible has to say about the future. That's why God said something about the future so that we would know and at the same time, we still have to reach the lost and be strong as Christians. And so it is all relative. Make a big mistake by concentrating too much on prophecy and a big mistake by ignoring find that balance. Well, this chapter does deal with the rapture of the church and there are those who do not believe the Christians who do not believe in the rapture of the church and I'm not going to take the time to share the opposing views. Why should I am under no obligation.
I don't agree with them.
I think the wrong I'll share with what I find in Scripture and you can make up your own minds and there plenty of endless debates out there all one last note before we begin the verses, the church will be spared the great tribulation. Such as the world has never known the church will not be here except the apostate church.
That church will be here of these on single churches, apostate churches, any church that is fallen away from the faith no longer believe in the exclusivity of Jesus Christ and his claims believe there's other ways to heaven also were more concerned with people than they are with God, and they are outside of salvation, but the true church. Those believers who love the appearing of Jesus Christ.
Whether it is in their hearts or before their eyes.
They love him no matter what they will be taken out of the tribulation period and not die will get to that as we go through.
Now verse nine before we get to the end times part.
Paul still wrapping up some business with them concerning their behavior. He says in verse nine of first Thessalonians 4 but concerning brotherly love you have known me that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another.
Now the Greek word, therefore brotherly love this Phila Adelphia where we get Philadelphia it is a strong love. It is a good love does not. That spiritual mighty love of God, but it is a good love. None the less. We have much to say much to do with this type of love in our lives. And this, in contrast to the carnal cravings that he had been dealing with in the earlier parts of this very chapter verse five. For example, he says, in contrast, hold up brotherly love and you have no need that I should teach you about this John the apostle write about this in his first letter is that you don't need to be taught something.
Now he's not saying you do not need to be taught. Neither is pulsing that because the teaching them as they're saying this, obviously, we need instruction, but there are some things that God says I'll take this one personally and love is it we learn love. Yes, by watching others, but it is God who is giving us the understanding we first come into this agape love. This higher love, of which this Phila Adelphia love is built upon by the love we receive from him. As Christians we know when a Christian comes to Christ, he realizes in an instant.
Woe is me. I'm a sinner before a holy God and had it not been for his love. I'm going to hell, and that's the whole story in the hell is not for a moment. It is eternal and we recognize in this flat-chested God stuck his hand down and grabbed us because he loves us and we respond to this appalling witness. These Thessalonians, they were schooled in love. They know how to love each other in this human beings they had up a common love Phila Adelphia type of love but now in Christ. It was stronger. It had more meaning and it was without an any comments on this.
He wants to let them know I have witnessed that you have brotherly love always and why doesn't he just say agape love. Well, one reason is you know you have those people that are Christians which we are hopefully they can love God with it. Can't seem to love brothers, sisters, is wrong and needs to be fixed. They try to hide behind lodges love the Lord you you love the Lord, you can love people. You might not like them too much, which you will be looking out for their best spiritual interests without hesitancy and so he says for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another, God teaching his own now we all know how awful, loveless, and this is when we have been the victim of it, selfish person is nothing you can do to tell them their love because that is the insatiable they're all about themselves and anything that's not pleasant is immediately spun around my mother talking about that group. I want to read this remark.
Chapter 28 is a common verse and by common I do not mean trivial or powerless is very powerful.
In fact, it belongs to the Old Testament, the Shema that you would recite as a daily prayer and it is when Jesus was speaking quoting.
He says them. One of the scribes came, having heard them reasoning together, perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him that his scribe is asking Jesus which is the first commandment of the mall.
What's it all about Jesus answered him, the first of all the commandments is the Lord our God is one is absolute. This strengthens the Trinity in the context of this Hebrew and the rest of the Old Testament, but he continues this is the Lord our God is one and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart with all your mind with all your strength and your soul. Everything you've got to love God and then he says this is the first commandment. And the second is like it is this you shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these. What you cannot love your neighbor properly. If you don't love God first, the love of man of sinners comes through the love of the sinless God by loving God, we understand what how were supposed to love one another and if you try to just do it because someone is programmed you to do things you will have a love built on feelings and you'll constantly be confusion will always feel guilty. But when you understand God loves you and is not looking to smash upside your head and that is not calling you to do everything then you have freedom because you free from this guiltless power.
I think one reason why many Christians believe the church goes to the great tribulation period or part of the great relation. It is because they themselves have guilt born out of legalism. They don't understand grace when they speak of grace if sovereign grace is not grace when they start doing things. Playing with it all graces sovereign judgments are everything God is sovereign God gives you a penny at sovereign and so there are these well-meaning believers who I think when they read Scripture and they come out with their Bible studies there built on a sense of personal guilt, we should go to the tribulation. Why God promised to take us out of it. So there is no second commandment. The first is reduced if it is ignored if it is tampered with in that first commandment is you love God with everything.
I don't mind telling my children. I love you after God. God comes first to so much love is enough of it to go around. You won't even miss is what Jesus said said about loving your neighbor like you love yourself you got so much self-love built inside of you that you can love the world and no one would miss it. You can only understand these things in the light of Christ and so his love instructs us to recognize others and to show this love towards others even when they're not very loving or lovable.
Some of you had more contact with them. This past Thanksgiving at the family table's like man I can't believe we got the same DNA, but that's how it is you know what to do about the righteous be blameless and don't be mean they continues in verse 10, and indeed you do so toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia, but we urge your brethren, that you increase more and more well again he witnessed their love and he says don't be satisfied with any victories you may achieve in love. It's going to be new challenges it needs maintenance constantly and so don't let your guard down when it comes to love. There are those again who think affection is lovely think that peace comes through some you know if we could all just get along and get the guns away from the good people that only the bad people will have them in will love them as a shooting us to death, and now they don't say it that way but that's the rationale behind such probably they have a misguided understanding of what pieces you don't understand there is a BP until the Prince of peace comes and enforces and extracts those who will not come under his authority and whenever you have these you know if we can all get rid of nuclear weapons, though it would be great but it's not going to happen that guys always going to look to get the upper hand. The good guys allow them to then you have what happened in Holland: and all that part of Europe when they were not preparing for war with that Nazi war machine was in full gear and it just wiped through Europe like nothing could stop them. The line the French lines is crumbling and this example of evil, arming itself and the relatively innocent doing nothing while okay back to this verse 11.
He says that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business asked my inflection on that and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you there another New Testament commandment were commanding you did this.
Don't be lazy. A freeloader mooch off the people of you can get a job get one if you can't get a job. Look for one and hope and pray that you can find one but I love this. You know that the quiet life as best you can, summons or school not going to be satisfied with you living my life to have a disturbed.
Something will come along and near the Nazis were the true space invaders and you think clutter is but there evil is a space invader. You have a nice space of peace, it will come and try to take it all away and the quiet life as opposed to the self-centered life is one that has to be governed even by God, and the system mind your own business. How many Christians need to have that tattoo you want to tattoo tattoo that one on you on your head against your four head to can't see it, but unless we issue mirrors but anyway the mind your own business.
Good advice and work with your own hands. Focus on forming your own field, not someone else's field that would make you a transgressor, and remembering that laziness is not a virtue.
Verse 12 he continues that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing. Those outside the onion believers. That's who he's referring to here and you know we don't want the world to accuse Christ of leaving us ill-equipped. That's what happens when we stop mining our business and stop being Christians were supposed to be. We start behaving like the world and identifying with them.
In Jesus name we began to crumble Satan. If you have a group of people and one of them is a Christian, hanging out with nonbelievers on a regular basis. He's going to target that Christian Nuckols unbelievers in a work with them there already on cruise control is you.
He wants to get that so he can be smart. The name of Christ. So Jesus is all that he says he is and why is it I can't snap out of certain things. Why do I lack love and joy and why do I lack kindness and faith, and self-control will be things must be worked for.
They do not come naturally. They are spiritual but spiritual does not mean magical is still is an involvement we must be involved with the Lord. And so again if Jesus is all that he says he is in. Why do some of the Christians go to the world for guidance and instruction and comfort not Christ, not to the church to other Christians disconnect their list of what Peter says about we being in a superior position because of who we belong to second Peter says his divine powers given to us all things that pertain to life that leaves out nothing all things he says and to godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us by glory and virtue by knowing him, not just book knowledge but personal knowledge, with Jesus Christ living the Christian life.
He continues by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises and superlatives the Christian life promises big things. He says that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature that is powerful through these promises would God gives you may be partakers of God's nature. That's what it says. You'll be like Christ, he says, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. All types of lust, lust for self fame and fortune sexual lust anything sinful and first reduces having a good conscience that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. They might not be outwardly but inwardly they are when the righteous are blameless before their eyes. Much persecution comes from can't pin anything on the skill and the soul is going to be the behavior of antichrist, and now we come to another section in this letter Paul is now dealing with the end times questions that the church in Thessalonica asked him through Timothy remember Timothy's coming back with a report to medicinal by the way have some question for your ball all taught them about the end times, as do believers, but there was a confusion about separating the two comings of Christ after his resurrection, Christ comes twice the first time he comes for his church. He does not put sandals on the ground. The second time he comes with his church and he will put his feet on the ground. Bible makes this very clear so the separate these going to deal with this now so in verse 13 says I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep less you sorrow as others who have no hope. Well again he is going to separate the rapture from the second coming on the calendar of God and the two separate events. There is the second coming of Christ.
The second advent, let me put it in order. First there is the rapture where the church is extracted.
Believers do not die. God calls them home.
There is precedence for this in Scripture. Elijah is one went up on a chariot of fire did not experience death, but this extraction of believers is clearly taught in the Greek language in the English understanding is no escaping it. I think pastors have no right to withhold this blessing of hope given to us in the prophecy of Jesus Christ in the Scripture in both old and New Testament is illustrated.
It is clearly declared is in type. We haven't laid out before us. I find it inescapable. Even the very word is in Scripture and were coming to that. So he says concerning those who have fallen asleep. Well, this is a euphemism. It is a soft way of saying their dead and the Christian really goes to sleep. Jesus said, he who believes in me shall not die and if you're not afraid of going to sleep. Then Beth should have the same approach by the Christian asleep and this is what the New Testament teaches all of these in the Bible have experienced death, with the exception of course Enoch and Elijah what our Lord experienced it all experience the resurrected bodies and so does second Corinthians chapter 5 verse one Paul writes to them. He says for we know that if our earthly house.
This tent is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens of the soul is made out of the same stuff. Eternity is made out of. What is the soul that you as you without your body. Everyone has a soul. Unbelievers have a soul that is who they are.
Each individual. The spirit is dead until it is born again, that is life from God, born again, God breathes life into us yet again and making you in the image of his son gets back on track is finally fulfilled when we are glorified when we receive are received into heaven. The soul does not sleep the body does. We don't hear too much about this today, but there were those who taught soul sleep and is such a silly little thing Scripture laughs that it mocks it. I mean, you have Stephen being stoned to death and he sees a lawyer standing up to receive them into heaven. You think to receive them, and having to put in a nap ready here.
Stephen I get to bed. Your soul has to sleep because somebody made up the screwball doctrine or God's neck and honor screwball doctrines at all. Moses and Elijah on the Mount of Transfiguration. What did they have to wake up so they can make this appointment to go back to bed is not rational, just on the surface nevermind is not taught anywhere. Those who teach it or up to mischief. They have other doctrines.
They won't push down your throat if you foolish enough knowing the church came out of the dark ages, having lost so many doctrine. Rome had plunged Christianity into the darkest ignorance.
The church is ever known. And when the church began to come out of it.
I had barnacles of wrong information attached to them and it took centuries to get it all off, you know the teaching that when you take the communion it mysteriously turns into blood in his flesh as cannibalism. Jesus never preached it never even entered his mind. And yet you have those who came out. Some of them held to that they still do to this day.
Trans-substantiation is the doctrine is called and they still believe this mystical thing happens you know that kind of stuff that makes people think Christians are kooky and won't listen to us, preached the truth you make a big mistake. I think when you go into that area. But anyway, that's a side note, suffice it to say that there is no purgatory.
There is no soul sleep. The Bible teaches clearly in the New Testament that when a Christian dies they go right be with Jesus when Jesus said the from across today you will be with me in paradise. That's what he meant and of anybody had caused to go to that place known as purgatory. That would've been that the that outlaw on the cross. Thanks for tuning in to cross reference radio for this study in the book of first Thessalonians cross reference radio is the teaching ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville in Virginia to learn more information about this ministry. Visit our website cross reference radio.com once you're there you will find additional teachings from pastorate. We encourage you to subscribe to our podcast. When you subscribe, you will be notified of each new edition of cross reference radio. You can search for cross reference radio in your favorite podcast app as well. That's all we have time for today, but we hope you'll join us next time. It's pastorate continues to teach through the book of first Thessalonians, right here on cross reference rate