“And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one”
Dear fellow believers, how was your meal? We sang some praise songs before today’s sermon, and one of those praise songs was a song entitled “The warriors of our Lord.” In the last phrase, the words “warriors of heavenly army♪” hit some quite high pitches and sometimes I fail to hit that high. Most of our saints either just lip sync or make a screeching sound, but I think my efforts were commendable today. So, I was quite proud of myself, but our praise leader said that those who really sing well only lip sync in those parts. His saying made my crest fall for a short while. I am thankful that we the born again righteous people of God are able to praise God, whether we sing well or not. I believe our praises are beautiful before God, even if all that we do is sing out of harmony.
This afternoon, believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit will receive their baptism. Fortunately, the weather is quite wonderful to give and receive baptism. After we finish our baptism ceremony, you may swim in the pool. Just be careful about the cold water. I think the water of our pool is too cold for the old or feeble people. I advise those who are going to play in the water to watch the time you are in the water. Above all, safety is our utmost concern. We will have about one hour reserved for time to play in the water, and afterwards we will resume with our group fellowships.
During summer, water sports are the most fun. Especially, our Sunday school children will love to play in the water. Our Sunday school children have been asking their teachers when they go swimming since they arrived here. They want to try out their new swimming suits and hence, cannot wait for their chance to dip in the water. They saw the middle and high school youth go into the pool to clean it and have been asking why they are not allowed in it. They wanted to go inside the water so bad that they volunteered to clean the pool themselves.
Our kids are so talented in dancing. You would be surprised at their dance moves. From break dance to hip-hop, there isn’t a style of dance they can’t do. I thought that I was a good dancer, but compared to our children, what I did cannot even be called dancing. Their dance moves are truly amazing. Once you see them dance, you want to reward them with some sweets.
There is one kid who is especially enthusiastic about dancing. If some other kid shows off a better dance move than he does, he gets jealous and tries even harder to dance better than that other kid. His grandfather lives in downtown Injae. There is a television program called “Amateur Singers Contest” that tours around the country to find talented people in singing and dancing. This grandfather appeared on the show and won the popularity award, when the show came to Injae. He was able to win the popularity award with his incredible twists.
Still, no one in the family welcomed him back home, when he came back with the popularity award from the contest. He expected a great welcoming party with banners. But when he saw no reaction from his family, he was a little disappointed. He got upset and vented that it is no use to raise children.
His grandson might inherit his grandfather’s blood and talent for dancing. This kid is already a master in twist dancing and now is mastering break dancing. Also, the father of this kid is an excellent singer. He can sing any song in this world. He has a talent of singing an appropriate pop song to whatever subject our conversations may turn to. I don’t think it was naturally innate in him but rather that he have heard so many songs from his infancy. The grandfather of the Sunday school kid, who is the father of the pop song wizard, used to be a domestic tofu maker. He would start making tofu from 4 in the morning while listening to pop songs on the radio. Because he was raised listening to pop songs from his infancy, he was able to become an authority in matters regarding pop songs to this day. Although we do not teach any pop songs at the church of God, he still is able to sing any old pop song on demand. Truly, you cannot lie about someone’s bloodline as we inherit our genes from our parents. We praise the Lord for having this guy use his talents for singing not out in the world but to praise God. God is truly amazing.
Today, we will focus on verse 13 of the Lord’s Prayer, “And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.” I said we fall into temptations, hardships, and evil because we follow our own greed. If any saint especially commits evil deeds before God and becomes an evil person, it is because he is chasing after his fleshly prosperity.
We Must Pray That We Do Not Fall into the Evil That Jeroboam Fell Into
If we look at the Scripture at 1 King chapter 12 verses 25 to 33, we are able to read about the reign of King Jeroboam. This person Jeroboam was not originally of a royal family but a subordinate of King Solomon. This man became the king of Israel by chance.
David, the king of Israel, was a person who walked with God and for that he received great blessings from God. After his death, his son Solomon became king of Israel due to David’s faith. Solomon in turn received great blessings to acquire whatever he wanted. However, Solomon served many idols instead of the one true God. He earned God’s wrath by living after only his own greed and not the Word of God. However, God postponed His judgment on Solomon for another generation out of consideration for David.
Solomon’s son Rehoboam did not turn his heart around and committed even worse evil deeds than his father instead of following God. God did not hold His wrath any longer and cursed him. When Rehoboam, son of Solomon, became king, God gave 10 of the 12 tribes of Israel to Jeroboam, who was not even from a royal family, in order to punish Solomon and Rehobaom.
Jeroboam did not fear God, however, despite his humble origin. Although he had received kingship because of God’s punishment of the royal family, he lost sight of this fact and tried to defend his glory as a king. Although he should have believed, followed and served Jehovah God for ordaining him as king, Jeroboam didn’t.
Once he became king, Jeroboam did not like the fact that the Temple was in Jerusalem, which was still governed by Rehoboam. He thought that his people’s worshipping at the Temple in a region governed by Rehoboam would undermine and threaten his authority. On the tenth day of the seventh month each year, people would go to the land governed by Rehoboam to worship and participate in the offering of the Day of Atonement. Jeroboam thought that it could be a great threat to his kingship and planned schemes to defend his powers.
He was always conscious in the back of his head that he was not from a royal family. There were two kings in one nation at that point, and if one of them had to quit the throne, Jeroboam knew very well that it would be him. “I wasn’t legitimately supposed to be the king and still I managed to become the king. Hence, my people could naturally form a faction to dethrone me. If that ever becomes true, I will lose everything I have including even my own life.” Once Jeroboam felt this way, he devised plans to stay in power out of fear that his kingship granted by God may be in jeopardy.
Thus, Jeroboam built shrines at the southern and northern end of the Kingdom of Israel. He built shrines in Dan and Bethel and placed a golden calf in each of them. Instead of the Temple in Jerusalem, he built shrines at Dan and Bethel. Instead of the ark of the covenant of the LORD, he placed golden claves in them and had his people worship them. Pointing to the golden calf, he said, “This is the god who brought you out of Egypt.” He made people serve a visible idol. This was an outrageous act of treachery against God, so immense that it was unforgivable.
Because He Followed Only the Desires of the Flesh
The Lord teaches us to pray, “And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.” People fall into temptations and evil because they follow only after their own flesh. The source of all our temptations, hardships, and evil is to follow the greed of our flesh. Jeroboam fell into the evil of opposing God because he wanted to fill the greed of his own flesh. He committed evil deeds before God so that he wouldn’t lose his kingship, fame, and honor in the flesh.
Jeroboam would not have committed such hideous evil, if he had known and believed in God correctly. God gave Jeroboam all of 12 tribes except for the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, so Jeroboam should have received this with his faith. It is God who can give and take away as well as sustain that glory and honor. In spite of this, Jeroboam did not believe in God. He should have lived his life praising God who had given him his kingship as well as all his wealth, glory, power, and honor. Instead, blinded by the greed of his flesh, he committed the great evil of opposing God. Jeroboam, who had been given 10 tribes of all Israelites, was afraid of losing his kingship to Rehoboam and tried to sustain his position through human efforts. He did not believe that all these works had happened to fulfill God’s will.
No matter how weak our faith may be, we should never commit the evil of chasing human glory rather than turning the glory to God. If he had lacked in his faith, he should have gone to the Temple of God and met with God and asked God to sustain his distinct position. But, Jeroboam ended up opposing God out of his human greed to defend all of his glories. Out of fear that he might lose his kingship and his servants, he committed the unforgivable sin of worshipping idols before God.
The Israelites came to commit the sin of worshipping all sorts of idols as well as the golden calves before God because of Jeroboam. The sin Jeroboam committed was evil and atrocious because it became the origin of a collective heresy of the Israelites that makes them stand against God all the time. Hence, a history of subordinates overthrowing their kings to become kings themselves continued. People continued to worship at shrines. People believed wooden carvings in the shape of humans. And people bowed before the idol of Asherah, a gentile goddess, instead of their true God. They committed all sorts of evil while calling the name of the Lord God inside their shrines. They bowed before gentile gods and idols of fertility and prayed for the birth of children as well as their prosperity. Furthermore, there were male and female prostitutes around the shrines to perform all kinds of obscene acts. Jeroboam’s sins made the Israelites forget that Jehovah God is the true God. He made them leave God and commit all sorts of evil. His sins were an atrocious evil that deserved all kinds of curses.
The Lord taught us to pray, “And do not lead us into temptation,” in the Lord’s Prayer. Because we can go astray if we fall into too great of a hardship, He told us to pray that we get delivered from evil so that we may not fall into great hardships. Hence, we should act out of our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit when facing all evil.
Let’s Think about Praying “Deliver Us from the Evil One”
We commit many personal sins in this world. We commit so many sins that we cannot recall every single one of them ourselves. We are the wicked beings who cannot help but commit all kinds of sins. Although we cannot help but commit such sins, all of our sins were washed away completely through our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Since we now live in our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit before God, we must not pray for the forgiveness of all our sins everyday but for the strength not to betray our faith in the gospel.
“But deliver us from the evil one!” In other words, we must pray that we do not fall into the evil of directly opposing God, which deteriorates the gospel of the water and the Spirit. And our Lord is telling us that we should also pray for the strength to share the gospel of the water and the Spirit with those who have not received the remission of sin as of yet.
As we look at the passage “But deliver us from the evil one” from the Lord’s Prayer, we will examine what God is telling us and how this is taking place in the realm of the spiritual world. The salvation of the remission of sin in the Bible is revealed both through the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle and in the Old Testament and through Jesus’ ministries on this earth, that is, His baptism, blood, death, and resurrection written in the New Testament.
We are able to realize that the reason the Israelites were ruined was originally because of Jeroboam’s sins. The Israelites had lost their land for about two thousand years and now are still entangled over a series of disputes because Jeroboam corrupted the sacrificial system set by God and because he led the Israelites to himself rather than to God. Israel was divided into two kingdoms. The northern Kingdom of Israel was ruled by Jeroboam while Rehoboam ruled the southern Kingdom of Judah. They believed in God separately on their own and worshipped God, each on their own terms. The Temple appointed by God was in Jerusalem of Judah, which was governed by Rehoboam. Jeroboam established shrines in place of God’s temple in the region governed by him. Thus, Jeroboam misled the Israelites in the wrong direction. Jeroboam committed an incredibly dreadful sin before God by placing a golden calf inside each of those shrines.
We too can commit the sin of worshipping at a shrine instead of the temple and the sin of placing idols in our hearts instead of God. In other words, we can commit the sin of corrupting the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit in order to fill the lusts in our hearts. God is telling us that the sin of deteriorating God’s sacrificial system by following our own thoughts instead of the faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit is to have Christianity degraded into a worldly religion, and that the end result of such a sin brings about our eternal dispute with God and causes us to drift away from Him. Thus, we must pray “But deliver us from the evil one,” and we should overcome the evil of believing in the untruth by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Those who have not received the remission of sin are to serve the idols like Jeroboam for they do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Moreover, some who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit can betray the Truth of salvation and mislead others in the wrong direction. We must overcome these. Those who have not yet been born again must receive the remission of sin by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Those who have already received the remission of sin through the water and the Spirit must deliver those who are still drowning in evil without having received the remission of sin.
It saddens me that there are so many Christians who have a similar faith to that of Jeroboam. Now, let’s compare the faith of those who have fallen into the evil and oppose God like Jeroboam and the faith of those who truly believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
The biological son of Solomon was Rehoboam. Hence, Rehoboam was a true royal who inherited the kingship as determined by God. However, this could not be said about Jeroboam. Since Jeroboam was merely a subordinate, it was only natural that he was anxious about the fact that there would be revolts against his reign for he was not from the royal family appointed by God. So, He felt that he could not help but oppose God in order to keep his kingship. Thus, Jeroboam ended up committing the great sin of opposing God in order to fulfill his own ambitions. In the end, he committed the great sin of completely altering the sacrificial system that God had established. But, he should have entered the Temple of God and worshipped Him according to the sacrificial system that God had given.
God has been instructing us about His salvation through the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle from the time of Exodus. The Israelites really worshipped God in accordance with the God-given law of the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle. Hence, they believed according to the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle and received the remission of their sins. The Israelites listened to the Word of God and followed His instructions.
The Israelites were governed under a theocracy. God was their King and all the people were a servant to God. That was the theocracy of Israel. Israel was such a country. Hence, to disobey the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle was to break the law of the nation. Moreover, it did not end as a violation of the law of the nation but constituted a sin of breaking the Law of God and opposing God. Especially, a king should never ignore the Law of God and he had to be the first one to adhere to the Law of God at all costs.
Hence, Rehoboam made offerings in accordance with the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle as spoken by God and received the remission of his sins. Rehoboam represents the righteous who have received the remission of sin by believing in the baptism Jesus received and the blood on the Cross. On the other hand, who would those who break the God spoken Law of the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle and commit unrighteous and unlawful acts like Jeroboam did be in today’s world? They would be those who believe only in the blood of the Cross, while ignoring the baptism Jesus received from John the Baptist.
Let’s Look at the Wrong Faith before God
The gods of Jeroboam was two golden calves. He made two golden calves, placed one each in two different shrines, and taught his people that these golden calves were their gods. Jeroboam placed the golden calves inside the shrines and made the Israelites worship them saying, “This is the god that led you out of the land of Egypt.”
What do these golden calves signify to us? They are none other than the ‘power’ and ‘wealth’ of humans. Our traditional sport of ‘Korean wrestling’ is also nothing more than boasting of one’s strength. We boast about the human strength of the flesh and about our individual abilities. Humans like to boast about the power they possess. They make idols out of who have more money or power. In other words, a golden calf is a god to those who have not yet received the remission of sin.
Jeroboam worshipped the golden calf as his God. And he made 10 tribes that were under his rule worship the golden calf as their god. He made them believe that the golden calf is their god and had them serve and follow it. If the king of a nation follows and believes in the will of God, his people will also follow God. On the other hand, if the king does not believe, his people will serve and follow the power of this world. Those who serve a king of the flesh cannot help but oppose God in their lives.
We can see these phenomena even inside the church of God. If the leader of one of God’s Churches follows God, the saints of the Church will do the same. On the contrary, if the leader does not possess a sincere faith before God and chases the prosperity of the world, the saints of the Church will end up serving idols no matter how hard they try to keep their faith and live sincere lives toward God.
The Psalms say, “It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard,
The beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments” (Psalms 133:2).
God lets His blessings flow down through a leader who fears God and follows His will. If the leader lives with a sincere and worthy faith before God, it will flow down to the saints and they will naturally be soaked in good faith and oil, that is, the Holy Spirit. However, if the heart of a leader who leads the saints is full of evil ambitions that oppose God, the saints will be soaked in corrupted and filthy oil and there will be no way to avoid receiving it. Hence, the leader of a Church must lead a proper life before God and lead the saints in a faith that delights God. For this reason, the saints should pray for their leaders that God leads and holds them. That in turn benefits the saints themselves.
King Rehoboam was different from King Jeroboam. Rehoboam believed and served Jehovah God, the King of kings: he believed in God as God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and he believed that God had delivered them out from the land of Egypt. Like this, the God King whom Rehoboam believed in was quite different from the God whom King Jeroboam believed in.
Differences between the Life in the Tabernacle and That of the Shrines
They had different places to worship God. How different are they? King Rehoboam made offerings inside the Temple. However, King Jeroboam made his offerings inside the shrines. The Temple was built according to the model of the Tabernacle that God had given them. God gave them the sacrificial system and ordered them to build the Tabernacle to serve Him according the sacrificial system. God placed priests inside the Tabernacle and had people worship in accordance with the Law, which He had appointed. However, the shrines were a sham. They offered the deteriorated sacrifice at the shrines, and the priests were not appointed according to the qualifications God had fixed. Everything at the shrines was done without consideration of God, although they were supposedly a place of worship for God.
The shrine was a similar place to our country’s village shrine, which was called “Sunghwangdang.” Sunghwangdang is built either in the middle of a hill or by a frequently traveled road by stacking up natural stones. Sometimes, a shaman comes to it and does his or her rituals. “Hui, hui! You lack in sincerity so that all the pumpkin pies are half-boiled.” You hear the sound of drum beating. “Once the day breaks, all the food on the table is mine.” The drum keeps beating “The sooner the sun rises, the sooner they become mine… You lack in sincerity. Put more money on the table.” And the drum keeps beating. Because the ghosts come to Sunghwangdang, people gather there with expectant hearts as if they were haunted by something.
The fact that Jeroboam and his people worshipped at the shrines indicates that they did not base their faith on the sacrificial system of God. This is a very crucial point for us who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit to know correctly. People do not recognize the difference between worshipping at the Temple and the shrines and consider the two as analogous. Yet, you must have faith based on a precise knowledge. The gap between worshipping at the Temple and at the shrines is as far as the heavens are higher than the earth. The difference is a matter of whether a person believes in the Truth or not. In the matters of knowing and believing in God, whether or not we believe in Him according to the sacrificial system, that is, the law of the remission of sin determines the fact that God would accept our faith or not. God made His people worship Him in the Tabernacle according to the sacrificial system He established. God accepted this method of worshipping. However, God would never accept worship offered at the shrines in sacrificial rituals established by humans. Rather, God said that He would send down fires on those places.
Jeroboam’s evil deeds did not end with building shrines and placing golden calves inside of them. The sinful acts he committed before God knew no end and got more atrocious as time passed by. Jeroboam made priests out of those who were not Levites and placed them at the shrines. On the other hand, King Rehoboam made priests only out of the bloodline of Aaron among the Levites in accordance with the sacrificial system as God established through Moses. Rehoboam placed those priests at the Temple so that they may make offerings to God and serve Him. Only the men from the tribe of Levites, especially the family members of Aaron were able to serve the holy duties that offer the remission of sin. They ordered the Israelites to put their hands on the sacrificial animals to transfer their sins and to receive the remission of their sins. On the Day of Atonement, the High Priest from Aaron’s family laid his hands to the scapegoat according to the sacrificial system to transfer the yearly sins of all Israelites once and for all. He drew its blood and sprinkled it over the ark of the testimony seven times to pay off the wages of those sins. This is the gist of the sacrificial system that God had established.
Yet, Jeroboam appointed ordinary people who could not be qualified as priests by God. He set them on his own discretion. It was only natural that such priests would not know correctly the sacrificial system that God had established. They made an offering on their own terms at the shrines they built, which were not approved by God. It was enough to enrage God.
Because the purpose for worshipping God and the faith of these two people differed, such differences resulted in their different offerings. King Jeroboam worshipped his self-made golden calves as his God in order for the glory of his flesh such as fame, wealth, and power. On the other hand, King Rehoboam offered sacrifices with grateful heart according to the sacrificial system that God had established because he believed God who had saved and led his ancestors.
We Have to Compare the Two Gospels and Believe Correctly
How can we discern the right faith from the fake one? We are able to know this most definitely when we compare those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit to those who do not believe. That is, we are able to know who follows after the sins of Jeroboam and who inherited the faith of Rehoboam. Those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit now are followers of Rehoboam, and those who do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit have fallen into the sins of Jeroboam.
Hence, we who believe in the baptism of Jesus and in His blood must pray that we do not fall into the sins of Jeroboam. And if we are already in such sins by any chance, we must take care of those sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The only gospel that is able to deliver us all from sinfulness is the God given true gospel of the remission of sin, which is the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Let us believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit and overcome all evil. Whether we have received the remission of sin or not, none of us should fall into the evil Jeroboam fell into. Those who have received the remission of all their sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit must pray as God taught us because they are still vulnerable to fall into such evil. All of us must overcome the evil Jeroboam fell into through our faith in the true gospel.
The shortcomings in our actions are not a problem before God. It is the lack of our faith that is a great problem. An enormous sin before God is for Jeroboam to make the Israelites offer unlawful worship to God. Such evil out of loss of one’s faith is the problem. From time to time, Jeroboam himself entered the shrines and made offerings for his people as their king. This was true foolishness out of his delusion that he is equal to God. Jeroboam did all things as he pleased.
There have been many perversions to the Christian faith, which believes in God. We must realize that such deteriorations started with the alteration of the sacrificial system by Jeroboam in order to keep his kingship and powers: Although worships had to be offered at the Temple (or the Tabernacle), he worshipped at the shrines. In place of the ark of testimony, he substituted it with two golden calves. Although only the Levites could become priests according to the Law established by God, he made priests out of ordinary people. This was a great evil before God. However, unfortunately, there are those inside today’s Christianity who commit such evil.
Those Christians who commit such evil are chasing only the prosperity in their own insatiable flesh. They pray, “Please, make my grandson prosper. Make my descendants prosper. Let me succeed in my business.” The successes they ask for are all related to matters of the flesh, and most of them are money related. Hence, although they may shout the name of God and seek Him, what they serve in reality is not the true God but the golden calves of Jeroboam. The symbol of power is the golden calf! People try to gain power by taking advantage of the name of God. Hence, they pray to God to give them powers. They pray for the power of the flesh.
They do not worship in accordance with the sacrificial system as determined by God. They do not fight the battles of faith as Christian soldiers born again through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Although they ritualistically call the name of God and make offerings to Him, they still only seek God for their own benefits in the flesh while pretending to believe in God. Precisely speaking, they pretend to believe in God, rely on God, pray to God, and worship God in order to fulfill their own goals. This is the greatest evil before God. Therefore, we have to pray that we do not fall into such evil. “Lord, Keep us from such evil.” Our Lord told us to pray as such.
There are those who have first been delivered from such evil and now worship before God, depend solely on God, and follow God. They are the righteous that had received the remission of sin through their faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. They despise evil and those who have fallen into evil as they work by their faith. Still, as those who have received the remission of sin ahead of others, they share the gospel of the water and the Spirit, which delivers such people from evil, and turns them around toward God. Of course, they do so by opposing evil and following after the goodness of God.
If we said with our mouth, “Deliver us from evil,” but followed after evil in our actions, there wouldn’t be a greater evil than this. We should not fall into the works of evil that is unbeneficial to us nor should we run our mouth without any follow up action. Rather, we should live by our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit as we simultaneously pray to God to deliver us from evil and actually follow up by doing the work of God.
There are many Jeroboam-like Christians who have fallen into sins by believing that they can be born again through their faith in the blood of the Cross. However, the true gospel is the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We who have the true faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit must rebuke and oppose those who claim the blood of the Cross as the only absolute Truth of salvation.
“Deliver us from the evil one.” We have been delivered from Jeroboam’s sin by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Still, there are those who have fallen into the evil like Jeroboam but yet do not realize their sins. We must rebuke and oppose them in the name of Jesus Christ. That is because we should never fall into the same evil again. We can win over and escape from such evil by walking with Jesus Christ. There is no other way to do so. We are able to do so just by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
The Gospel of the Water and the Spirit Is the Truth That Blots Out All the Sins of the People
Our Lord came to this world in the human flesh through the Virgin Mary. When He turned 30 years of age, He took all our sins onto Himself by receiving His baptism from John the Baptist. Our Lord received the baptism from John the Baptist by which He took all our sins and then immersed into the water. Then, He arose from the water. As Jesus arose from the water, the heavens opened up and God the Father testified to His Son: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17).
Jesus Christ was born into this world through the body of the Virgin Mary in order to deliver us from all the sins of this world. Our Lord came to this world as our Savior in order to deliver the entirety of humanity from all their sins and from the Devil. The reason Jesus Christ received the baptism when He turned the age of thirty was to fulfill the prophecies of the Old Testament. Our Lord voluntarily received the baptism from John the Baptist in order to take away all the sins of all humanity including you and me. He completely blotted out all our sins by fulfilling the purpose for His coming through receiving His baptism. He received the baptism in order to take away all our sins as He intended when He came to this world.
Many Christians wrongfully believe that Jesus took the sins of the world on the Cross. They don’t know the Truth of the baptism Jesus received before He was crucified on the Cross. Jesus Christ went to the Cross prepared to be crucified because He had already taken away all our sins through His baptism. Because He had received the baptism, He shed His blood on the Cross prepared to receive the judgments for all our sin in our place. In the place of our old selves who were soaked in sins and deserved the judgments for all our sins, Jesus took away all the sins of the world through His baptism. Hence, He ransomed the price for our sin by His precious blood. Jesus died on the Cross paying the ransom for all of our sins, which He took away through His baptism He received on His innocent and immaculate body. Our Lord received the baptism and died of the judgment for our sins to pay the ransom for the price of our sins.
Jesus was resurrected from the dead and ascended into Heaven. He now sits on the right hand of the Father. He is waiting for His time to come, as He watches us with care from above. Our Lord is waiting for the time of judgment to divide between those who have received the remission of sin by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, which Jesus Himself has accomplished, and those who believe only in the blood of the Cross or do not believe in Him at all. He hopes that everyone receives the remission of sin through the gospel of the water and the Spirit and that everyone enters the Kingdom of God with a big applause. However, those who have fallen into the evil of Jeroboam by holding onto their ambitions and thoughts will receive the judgment for their sins by God. Hence, such people must turn around from evil quickly.
Jesus Christ died crucified on the Cross having already taken all our sins upon Himself through His baptism. Put differently, Jesus Christ took all our sins upon Himself through His baptism before He was crucified on the Cross having received the judgment for all our sins. We must know that this is why He died on the Cross. Also, we must know and believe in the reason for which Jesus received His baptism.
As we receive the remission of sin and live out our faith, we must apply Jesus’ death on the Cross to our lives of faith. When we detest ourselves, when we are too tired to overcome ourselves, and when we are unable to overcome the ambitions of our flesh, we have to apply the Word “Our old persons have died on the Cross” to ourselves. We have to apply it in such times.
The Apostle Paul said that he had been crucified with Christ: “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). Along with his faith in Jesus’ baptism, the Apostle Paul believed that Christ’s crucifixion was to crucify himself to death. He could believe that he had been crucified with Christ when Jesus had died on the Cross having already been united with Him by his faith in Jesus’ baptism.
We must apply this Word to our lives. “My old self before I was born again by the water and the Spirit—that is, all my value system, will, ego, and habits—has died along with Christ. Hence, I have become a new person by believing in the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit. I was born again after I believed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. All my sins were transferred through His baptism, and all my old paradigms and values and relationships have already ended on the Cross.” We must believe by applying this to our lives.
Our faith in the Cross stands firm truthfully as we have faith in Jesus’ baptism that had all our sins transferred onto the body of Jesus Christ. Our Lord received the baptism and then received the judgment for all our sins by shedding His blood on the Cross. If He had not taken away all our sins through His baptism, there would be no need for Him to die. Moreover, in such a case, His death would have been meaningless. However, our Lord and Savior ransomed the price for our sins by shedding His blood on the Cross that He taken away all our sins by receiving the baptism from John the Baptist.
Jesus was resurrected from the dead. Jesus’ resurrection was the final evidence that He was our Lord and perfect Savior. Through our Lord’s resurrection, we came to believe that we have become new creations, that our bodies will be resurrected on the day of our Lord’s second coming, and that our Lord is our very perfect Savior.
1 John 5:6 states, “This is He who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth.” And it continues, “And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one” (1 John 5:8). The water (the baptism of Jesus), the blood of the Cross, and the Holy Spirit (the Divinity of Jesus) have made us the children of God who have been perfectly delivered from all our sins. These constitute the most righteous work of delivering believers of our Lord from evil completely. Our prayers “Deliver us from the evil one” have been answered through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Those of you who have not yet received the remission of sin must overcome all evil by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
People can still fall into the sins of Jeroboam even after they have received the remission of sin. But, they must overcome this through their faith of conversion. They must escape from this trap. They must kick it away. If anyone ignores the baptism Jesus received, we must realize that this is the sin of standing against God and keep away from him.
As a matter of fact, today’s Christianity is stupendously deteriorated. Christians think that they have perfect faith by just believing in the blood of the Cross. They say that their faith is well because they believe in Jesus as their Savior, Jesus as the Son of God, and His death on the Cross. However, that is not a complete faith. Moreover, if we look deep down into their hearts, what is their motive of their faith? It is nothing more than to chase a golden calf. They come to their respective churches in hopes that they will be well off in their flesh. Still, they don’t recognize the enormous evil that they have fallen into. Hence, they commit outrageous atrocities continuously. What is worse is that they are so blunt without any remorse.
But, what does the Bible say about the true salvation? The Bible says that not only does it include the blood of the Cross but also our Lord’s coming into the world and His reception of His baptism in order to deliver the entirety of all humanity from all their sins once and for all. Jesus took all our sins upon His own body by receiving His baptism and submitted Himself for the judgment of all our sins on the Cross. For our sake, our Lord offered Himself quietly just as a sheep before its shearers is silent (Isaiah 53:7). He had taken all our sins upon Himself through His baptism. He shed His blood on the Cross and He died quietly, and was resurrected from the dead to become our true Lord and Savior.
Even the Old Testament Testifies to the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit As the Truth
This Truth is clearly revealed in the Old Testament as well. In the Old Testament times, before offerings of sacrifices could be made inside the Tabernacle, the sinners had to lay their hands on the sacrificial lamb or goat and transfer their sins onto the sacrifice. In the Old Testament, the blood of a sacrifice was spilled only after the laying on of the hands inside the Tabernacle. The blood from the sacrifice would then be sprinkled onto the horn of the altar and its flesh had to be burnt on the altar.
A sacrificial animal must be without any blemish. It had to be closely examined before being offered. It could not have any blemishes. Animals that have many scars, walk with a limp, have bald spots, are blind, are missing a limb, have fractured bones, or have twisted bowels cannot be used for the purpose of sacrifice.
The wicked Jeroboam made offerings mimicking the sacrificial system determined by God for the remission of sin. He worshipped at the shrines. People did bring animals to the priests so that the priests can make offerings on their behalf. However, the animals were blind, walked with a limp, were disfigured, and were too revolting for those who brought them to eat at their own homes. And as for the priests, he elected ordinary people instead of Levites.
Hence, in Malachi, God’s wrath erupted. “Behold, I will rebuke your descendants And spread refuse on your faces, The refuse of your solemn feasts; And one will take you away with it. Then you shall know that I have sent this commandment to you, That My covenant with Levi may continue” (Malachi 2:3-4). “You should just forget about making any kind of offering at all. Do not disgrace My name. You are so wretched that you have already received your curses. Those who do not fear Me should no longer bother to disgrace My name but leave Me altogether. You who commit the sins of Jeroboam! If you do not turn away and cleanse your hearts, you will be cursed and thrown into the everlasting fires.” This was what God has given warning to us over and over.
Yet, this sin did not end with the evil of Jeroboam. After he died, his descendants committed the same evil. His son did as his father, as did the son of his son and so forth. Furthermore, all this evil was spread to the people of the southern kingdom governed by King Rehoboam. In the following days, true worship and false worship were all mixed into confusion, and both Judah and Israel collapsed. They were all destroyed before God. God used General Titus of Rome to wipe them all out. His army captured the Israelites and sold them to far away nations and scattered them. All of this happened because God was infuriated with them. The Temple was also absolutely destroyed as not one stone was left on another (Luke 21:6).
Hence, the Temple no longer exists in this world. There also is no Tabernacle in this world. No one knows where the ark of testimony is. They had to offer the sacrifice according to the Law determined by God. They had to acknowledge, respect, fear, and love God. Then, how could God receive glory from them, help them, and be their God, if they only had used, abused, and belittled God for their own glory and honor of the flesh? Instead, God scattered them and made them a nation without their own land for a long period of time. This is God’s judgment and curse to those who have fallen into evil.
We may fall into evil because of the weakness of our bodies. Yet, we must overcome it by our faith. Christian soldiers must overcome whatever evil they may face by their faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Some people who have fallen into the sins of Jeroboam may say, “I have received the remission of sin, and I don’t commit any sin because I have died in Christ. I do not bear any sinful fruits of the flesh since I am full of the Holy Spirit.” However, such a faith is far apart from the faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The righteous living by the true faith cannot associate with those people.
Dear fellow believers, we commit sins in this world because of our weak flesh, although we have received the remission of sin through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Yet, at those times, we are able to overcome evil by our faith, transfer even those sins, and cleanse ourselves completely by ruminating on the gospel of the water and the Spirit because we have the Holy Spirit in our hearts.
Even the Believers of the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit Keep Sinning Until the Day They Die
By believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, our hearts have become clean. And as Christian soldiers, we have become righteous tools of God’s works. We can become anew every day by ruminating of the gospel of the water and the Spirit even though we cannot but commit sins everyday out of our weaknesses. Therefore, we should not forget the gospel of the water and the Spirit even for a moment. Even if we forget it just for a split second, that would be enough for our hearts to be stained with the sins of this world. Although that would not make us sinners again, we would still have problems with our own consciences.
Even the righteous ones that received the remission of sin are not immune from committing sins. It is a matter of fact that even they commit personal sins. Even God Himself said that there is not a single righteous person who does not commit any sin at all (Ecclesiastes 7:20). It is through the power of the gospel of the water and the Spirit that we have no sin despite the fact that we still commit sins. It is also the blessing from God as well as a hidden secret of the Truth. Dear fellow believers, do we have sins or not despite the fact that we continuously commit personal sins? We are sinless. Hence, this is the secret of the salvation, which God has given us.
Still, some people dare to say, “Since I have been crucified with Christ on the Cross to death and have been resurrected alongside Him, I no longer commit any sin.” Saying thus would be an act against God out of one’s great error of thought.
The Truth of the Laver Prepared for the Sins of the Priests
Inside the court of the Tabernacle, the laver of bronze was placed between the altar and the Holy Place. Why would God have placed the laver in that specific spot? God did not place it because He had nothing else to put in that place.
When the priests made burnt offerings, he first cut the sacrifice into pieces, removed its intestines, took all the fat that was on the entrails, and placed its fat with its flesh on the fire. They would do as they were told by God by placing the sacrificial offering on the altar and setting afire to it as a burnt offering. As they were cutting the sacrifice into pieces, they easily became covered with filthy parts from the sacrifice. If they entered into the place where God dwelled in their filthiness as such, they would be stricken dead. Even if he is a priest and has offered many sacrifices before God, God would kill such a filthy person without any hesitation. If a person fearlessly entered the presence of God with their filth, God killed that person in an instant. Hence, the laver was placed in front of the Holy Place so that the priests could wash away the filth that tainted them at the altar of burnt offering before entering the presence of God inside the Tabernacle.
The laver of bronze was a big brass bowl filled with water to its brim. Why did they need such a laver inside the court of the Tabernacle? Was the laver placed inside the court of the Tabernacle so that they could raise all kinds of fish in it? No, it was not. The laver was placed inside the court of the Tabernacle and filled with water so that the priests could wash the filth away in case excrement, urine, or any other filthy stuff accidentally defiled them. It was there so that they could enter the high presence of God in their cleanliness.
As we serve the gospel of the water and the Spirit in this world, we come across a myriad of happenings. Sometimes we get ill tempered when we get preoccupied with the works of the gospel. At some people’s behavior, we are lost for words. Others act in a way we would not be able to understand in a million years. When we see those who are of no use to the service of the gospel and are rather a hindrance for this cause, we get infuriated and curse words almost escape our lips.
For an example, I can tell you an episode at our printing house. I once signed a contract with a printing house in our city to print our books. Our agreed upon day for publication came, so I asked them whether the books were ready. They said that the books were ready. Hence, I trusted their words and went there to pick them up. To my surprise, the books were not ready yet. The same kind of mishap happened three times.
This infuriated me. I could no longer put up with this. “Why did you tell us to come, if the prints are not even ready yet? You should have rather told me that the work was going to take a little longer instead of making me go back and forth several times for nothing. Are you going to keep lying like this? If you haven’t finished yet, then you should have called and let us know. Why do you make us go back and forth like this? And why are you making excuses for not meeting the deadline? If you continue like this, how could we trust you with any work?” Then, he asked me why I was so upset and said that he could somehow do that anyway. I was infuriated even further to hear that.
Dear fellow believers, I died through Christ on the Cross giving Him my trust. The Apostle Paul said, “I have been crucified with Christ.” We need this phrase when we are unable to control our impulses of the flesh any more. When we are so angry that we are unable to control our temper, we think to ourselves, “I have died in Christ. I shouldn’t act this way, if I have died and met God.” I stop my anger in the faith that I have died already.
Do you or do you not commit personal sins? Of course, you commit personal sins. The works need to be done, and it’s not like they are works of evil either. But we cannot but commit sins when someone hinders us in carrying out the work of God. A person filled with the Holy Spirit may appear to commit no sin while he is filled with the Holy Spirit, but the very moment he leans slightly over to his flesh he falls into the lust of the flesh. As Jesus was simultaneously both God and human, we too possess both the Holy Spirit as well as our human nature. As a matter of fact, our human nature weighs more heavily on us. Jesus only borrowed the flesh of man and in essence remained totally as God. On the other hand, we are merely sinless in our hearts by being born again of water and the Spirit, but we are born as sinners from our birth.
The Holy Spirit testifies that we have no sin in our hearts because we have received the remission of sin by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. “I have blotted out all your sins through the water and the blood. You are a child of God.” The Holy Spirit inside our hearts teaches us the discernment of right and wrong as we read the Bible. Still, we have our flesh. Sometimes, we play so hard that we forget what time it is and miss a worship service. At other times, we get so fatigued from partying all night that we fail to wake up early for morning prayers. Like this, humans are restricted by their weak flesh and by time as well. Because of such weaknesses we have, our Lord came to this world and received His baptism from John the Baptist in order to deliver such people from their sins.
We don’t have any sin even if we would not have pray loud with screaming voices like the fanatics do. We don’t have any sin if we only believe according to the law of God’s salvation regardless of who we are; we don’t have any sin if we believe the Truth as it is, that Jesus came to this world and blotted out all our sins once and for all according to the will of the Father. But, there are so many angels of light that actually are not from God. There are those who try to become even more holy because it is insufficient for them that our Lord has blotted out all their sins. We call them angels. The Bible calls them as “angels of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14). We don’t call them just any angels but demon possessed angels.
We should be grateful in our faith since our Lord has blotted out all our sins by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, remitted all our sins, and sent the Holy Spirit into our hearts. Yet, our flesh itself cannot become holy till the day we die.
If we never committed any sin, would we look at other people as humans? We would probably look at them as if they were beasts. Back in the old days, servants had to shout, “Stay back. Stay back,” when their noble masters went for a walk. Then, ordinary peasants would bow at the nobles as they passed by them. If our flesh were perfect, we would act like and be treated like the nobilities. We would yell, “Get away from me. Stay back,” at the sinners and look down on them as if they were some kind of bug.
However, because we still have our own flesh, we are able to understand, meet, and share the gospel with the sinners in this world. Our Lord came to this world in the flesh of man so that He could be with us. He came to this world in the flesh of man. He took away our sins and bore them onto Himself by receiving His baptism from John the Baptist. By dying on the Cross, He delivered us from all of our sins.
Dear fellow believers, we should never act in the extreme. We have to believe within the boundaries determined by God. To go beyond or fall short would be fatal to your salvation. To turn in such ways is to commit the sins of Jeroboam. Would you like to become someone like Jeroboam?
We have to pray, “But deliver us from the evil one” because we are in danger of falling into evil. We cannot lead our own ways because we have our weak bodies in the flesh. Hence, there is an order determined by God, and we have those who are ahead of us as well as the spiritual leaders. What use would the Church be if we were so perfect that we did not need a trusted leader since we could be our own leader? What use would the church of God and the Kingdom of God to this earth? What use would we have for our fellow saints as well as those who are ahead of us?
The Bible says, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity!
It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard,
The beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments” (Psalms 133:1-2).
It is truly very delightful to be with our Lord having faith in our Lord. Because every righteous person who has received the remission of sin stays together, we can be soaked to the skin with His grace and with the precious oil, the Holy Spirit. God truly delights when the saints who have received the remission of sin unite their hearts in the law of faith determined by God. He delights to see us receive the remission of sin within the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and spread that faith.
A person does not stop committing sins by any means just because he has received the remission of sin. It is a great evil deserving a curse from God to say that I never commit any more sin. Although it may look noble to say, “I never commit any more sin after I was born again,” how false would this be in front of God? Who on earth does not possess an evil heart and commit any sin? Still, it is an act of deceit before God to pretend to be noble and not to commit any more sin. We must realize how sinful it is to act in such a way before God. To pretend to be too noble and too holy is a direct challenge against God.
Do you know why a certain angel became the Devil? It happened because that angel challenged God and tried to become holier than God. Out of its own pride, that angel, that was a servant of God, degenerated into the Devil, which opposes God and deserves the eternal damnation from God. We should never fall into such a sin by keeping our faith wholeheartedly. And if we have fallen into such sin momentarily by any chance, we should quickly get out of such sin by our faith.
We have to acknowledge our fundamental nature as well as the Truth of the Word of God. Hence, the Lord’s Prayer teaches us to pray, “But deliver us from the evil one.” That is so because we can fall into the evil of Jeroboam at any moment. We have to be honest before God and acknowledge ourselves as we are. We should try to give glory to God for taking upon Himself all our weaknesses. Also, we should always meditate and practice in our lives the gospel of the water and the blood of Jesus who died for us.
You and I should believe and share the gospel of the water and the Spirit not passively but actively and progressively. We have to let those, who do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit but only believe that the blood of the Cross are sufficient for the remission of their sin, know that their action is a grave sin against God. In order to do so, we have to first ruminate on the gospel of the water and the Spirit on a daily basis. When we stay strong in our faith by doing the work of God and taking our daily bread, we can be compassionate to people who are suffering from their many sins and lead them to receive the remission of sin by sharing the gospel. If a person insists on staying on course to follow Jeroboam despite our numerous attempts to share the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we should let him be and stay as far away from him as possible. If we keep company with such a person, we may get tainted with the evil of worshipping as Jeroboam did.
Those who do not know how serious such a sin is will receive a due judgment. As the old saying goes, a puppy fears no tiger. Likewise, there are those who make fun of God with their infant knowledge of God. They have no idea how scary God really is.
This is the last phrase of the Lord’s Prayer. “And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.” The Lord’s Prayer teaches us to pray as the above because we are all capable of doing so.
How holy could a person ever be? No matter how holy we pretend to be, our fundamental nature never changes. It is funny to see people claim to be holy. Instead of having correct faith in their hearts, people nonsensically say that they are holy and no longer commit any sin because they have died in Christ.
Who in the world does not commit any sin? Who in the world is perfect in his flesh? Even the greatest people in history all committed numerous sins and eventually died. If people did not commit any more sin, what use would the laver serve? Also, why would Jesus have to come to this world and receive His baptism, if that was the case? Jesus could have skipped the baptism and went right on to the Cross, saying, “I am dying for you, so believe in Me. And don’t commit sin any more.” Yet, Jesus received His baptism before He died on the Cross.
Why did Jesus receive the baptism? Did He not receive the baptism in order to take away all of our sins? He received the baptism in order to take the sins we commit throughout our entire lives as well as the sins the entirety of all humanity committed throughout the whole of human history. He remitted all the sins of the world once and for all by taking all those sins onto Himself through His baptism. Our Lord took all those sins upon Himself once and for all because He was able. But we are weak and, thus, continue to commit sins on a daily basis. Hence, we who commit sins everyday are in need of the effect of the gospel that declares our Lord has taken all our sins once and for all. The gospel of the water and the Spirit through which Jesus delivered us once and for all is effective everyday for us who commit sins daily. Of course, I am not telling you to commit any sin intentionally.
As Soldiers of Christ, We Have to Deliver Those Who Have Fallen into Evil
We should rebuke those who have fallen into evil a couple of times. If they persist in holding a different faith from us, we should stay away from them. How could we coexist with them if they hold a different faith from us? We have no other choice but to stay away from them.
Don’t be fooled by people who say they no longer sin since they have died in Christ. They are luring you to make tools to fulfill the greed of their flesh out of you. “I am holy as such. Follow me.” Are you going to follow such a person? How could a person claim to be perfect whom no longer commits any sin when God is watching him? It doesn’t make any sense. Did we not receive salvation because we were too weak with many flaws? Then, how can they claim to be holy and perfect? We have become holy only because the holy God has made us holy in spirit. We have to remember that we are not holy out of our own merits.
Not only is it a problem of the evangelical churches but many individuals all over the place also claim that believing in the blood of the Cross by itself will blot out all their sins and that they no longer commit any sin. There are also so many of those who say that John the Baptist failed without a word of mention about the baptism of Jesus. Others say that the way to salvation can be found in many different religions. Still others are content to say that this and that doctrine from various Christian denominations are all correct. This is to say that the worship offered by both Jeroboam and Rehoboam were both correct. How could anyone say that the worship by Jeroboam was correct? If the two of them were indeed both correct, why did God repeatedly say that someone had fallen into the sins of Jeroboam?
After Jeroboam passed away, his son became king. His son like his father committed the sins of Jeroboam before God. Not only did the king practice unrighteousness and fall into the sins of Jeroboam but he also made his people worship in such a way. Hence, the entire population fell into the sins of Jeroboam, putting all the Israelites to their death.
Hence, the entire Israelite nation was ruined. Not only were they ruined spiritually but also in their flesh as well. Hence, most of them wandered here and there without their own country for thousands of years. Although they have now recovered their homeland, they are still of hostile terms with their neighbors while they are constantly fighting with the Palestinians. However, the most conservative of the Jews are insisting on restoring the Tabernacle of the old times in all its minute details. They still don’t accept or acknowledge Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
We should not fall into such evil. And we have to overcome by faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, if we are not to fall into such evil. We have to kick away such evil by our faith. We have to boldly overcome all the sins of Jeroboam, which enrages God and draws us apart from Him. “A human does not commit any sin if he once receives the remission of sin.” If someone says something that a human could not possibly say, we have to cross it out from our hearts. That is, we have to ignore it by thinking, “Yeah, you are smart. Be holy and perfect all by yourself.”
Soldiers of Christ must seek what is beneficial to the gospel. People say things and act in such a way because they seek their own interests over the interests of the gospel. They do not walk the wrong path by themselves but lure many other people of God. Soldiers of Christ should examine their faith daily through the Church. “This is what I have realized. Is this the correct faith?” Once we have examined it and found out that we believed incorrectly, we have to throw it away. And then, we have to know and believe correctly so that we can share the correct faith with others. If we don’t heed the Bible and believe in the true faith that comes into our minds, we would be standing in the fast lane to our eventual death.
“I will not commit any other sin.” This is not what we the born-again can say. “I will not leave You, my Lord, if that means that I should pay with my own life.” The Apostle Peter who made such bold determinations cursed and betrayed Jesus before long. If it were right that we should not sin after we have received the remission of sin, Peter’s faith would have been wrong. Not only that but all of Jesus’ disciples who committed sins out of their weaknesses would have hold a wrong faith. Yet, they shared the gospel all over the world as soldiers of Christ, lived in accordance with the will of God as faithful servants, and offered their lives to the end as some have been martyred. Truly, whose faith is wrong here?
In Catholicism, there is a person by the name of Saint Thomas Francis. He gave away to the poor and needy everything he had, even to the last garment of underclothes, and entered a monastery completely naked. People say that he was a saint. Yet, God calls such people children of the Devil. How could such a person be praised as a saint? How could an act that raised one’s own status instead of that of our Lord be considered as pious? The sin of lifting up oneself is the sin of Jeroboam, which God will judge accordingly.
He who does not lift up God although he believes in God has fallen into evil. Whether a person has done right or wrong so far, God is pleased with him only if he cherishes the righteousness of our Lord, meditates on the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and gives praise to Jesus everyday.
There are times in our lives when we commit sins and do evil deeds. At those instances, the correct thing for us to do is to immediately confess our wrongdoings, admit the sins we have committed, and to ruminate on the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit. “I am truly sinless because our Lord has already taken even these sins through His baptism and blood. Once again, I thank You and give all the glory before You.” Daily, we have to check our faith, confess our faith, and be courageous before our Lord as soldiers of the Christ. Our Lord has given us faith to sanctify us.
Our Lord has given us the Lord’s Prayer so that we may all live in this way. Our Lord who delights in such living has taught us the Lord’s Prayer. Our Lord has taught us the Lord’s Prayer so that we may live by the faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Of course, this does not mean that enumerating prayer titles constitutes the Lord’s Prayer. Since our Lord has clearly shown us how we should live our lives through the Lord’s Prayer, true faith would require us to believe in what our Lord has told us and to actually live our lives accordingly. Dear fellow believers, do you believe?
We give thanks to God. Tonight, the newly born-again from our gospel class who have just received their remission of sin will give their testimonies. Also, our children will show their talents. Tonight, we are going to have a celebration. A celebration of the 2002 Summer Discipleship Training Camp! I feel like shooting some firecrackers. I give thanks to God for having us experience such celebrations on a daily basis.