Dissension and blessing in the families.

Concerns about what was said by the Lord Jesus Christ:

(Luke 14:26) “26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.”

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1. One of the Ten Commandments written with the finger of God on two tablets of stone on Mount Sinai.

2. The importance of the Commandment: ‘Honor your father and your mother, revealed to the people on Mount Sinai.

3. The punishment for not fulfilling the commandment of God.

4. Disobedience of the Israelites and God's displeasure.

5. What the Lord Jesus Christ asks for and expects.

6. Dissension in families.

7. The blessing in families. The descendants of the chosen.

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1. One of the Ten Commandments written with the finger of God on two tablets of stone on Mount Sinai.

The importance of Ten Commandments revealed to the people on Mount Sinai.

On Mount Sinai God proclaimed the Ten Commandments to the people of Israel.

One of the Ten Commandments proclaimed by the voice of God to the people of Israel was: "Honor your father and your mother".

(Exodus 20:1-17) The Ten Commandments
“20 And God spoke all these words, saying:
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; 5 you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
7 “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
13 “You shall not murder.
14 “You shall not commit adultery.
15 “You shall not steal.
16 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.””

(Deuteronomy 5:1-21) The Ten Commandments Reviewed
“5 And Moses called all Israel, and said to them: “Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your hearing today, that you may learn them and be careful to observe them. 2 The Lord our God made a covenant with us in Horeb. 3 The Lord did not make this covenant with our fathers, but with us, those who are here today, all of us who are alive. 4 The Lord talked with you face to face on the mountain from the midst of the fire. 5 I stood between the Lord and you at that time, to declare to you the word of the Lord; for you were afraid because of the fire, and you did not go up the mountain. He said:
6 ‘I am the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
7 ‘You shall have no other gods before Me.
8 ‘You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or thatis in the water under the earth; 9 you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, 10 but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
11 ‘You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
12 ‘Observe the Sabbath day, to keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you. 13 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 14 but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your ox, nor your donkey, nor any of your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates, that your male servant and your female servant may rest as well as you. 15 And remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm; therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day.
16 ‘Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, that your days may be long, and that it may be well with you in the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
17 ‘You shall not murder.
18 ‘You shall not commit adultery.
19 ‘You shall not steal.
20 ‘You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
21 ‘You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife; and you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field, his male servant, his female servant, his ox, his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.’”

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These Ten Commandments proclaimed with the voice of God on Mount Sinai, later, were written on two tablets of stone with the finger of God and given to the Israelites through Moses.

(Exodus 31:18) “18 And when He had made an end of speaking with him on Mount Sinai, He gave Moses two tablets of the Testimony, tablets of stone, written with the finger of God.”

(Deuteronomy 4:12-13) “12 And the Lord spoke to you out of the midst of the fire. You heard the sound of the words, but saw no form; you only heard a voice. 13 So He declared to you His covenant which He commanded you to perform, the Ten Commandments; and He wrote them on two tablets of stone.”

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Because of the rebellion of the people against God, Moses broke the two tablets of stone.

(Exodus 32:15-19) “15 And Moses turned and went down from the mountain, and the two tablets of the Testimony were in his hand. The tablets were written on both sides; on the one side and on the other they were written. 16 Now the tablets were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God engraved on the tablets.
17 And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said to Moses, “There is a noise of war in the camp.”
18 But he said: “It is not the noise of the shout of victory, Nor the noise of the cry of defeat, But the sound of singing I hear.”
19 So it was, as soon as he came near the camp, that he saw the calf and the dancing. So Moses’ anger became hot, and he cast the tablets out of his hands and broke them at the foot of the mountain.”

Later, the Lord delivered new tablets of stone on which the same Ten Commandments were written again.

(Exodus 34:1-5, 28-29) Moses Makes New Tablets
“34 And the Lord said to Moses, “Cut two tablets of stone like the first ones, and I will write on these tablets the words that were on the first tablets which you broke. 2 So be ready in the morning, and come up in the morning to Mount Sinai, and present yourself to Me there on the top of the mountain. 3 And no man shall come up with you, and let no man be seen throughout all the mountain; let neither flocks nor herds feed before that mountain.”
4 So he cut two tablets of stone like the first ones. Then Moses rose early in the morning and went up Mount Sinai, as the Lord had commanded him; and he took in his hand the two tablets of stone.
5 Now the Lord descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord.
28 So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread nor drank water. And He wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.
29 Now it was so, when Moses came down from Mount Sinai (and the two tablets of the Testimony were in Moses’ hand when he came down from the mountain), that Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone while he talked with Him.”

(Deuteronomy 10:1-4) The Second Pair of Tablets
“10 “At that time the Lord said to me, ‘Hew for yourself two tablets of stone like the first, and come up to Me on the mountain and make yourself an ark of wood. 2 And I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke; and you shall put them in the ark.’
3 “So I made an ark of acacia wood, hewed two tablets of stone like the first, and went up the mountain, having the two tablets in my hand.4 And He wrote on the tablets according to the first writing, the Ten Commandments, which the Lord had spoken to you in the mountain from the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly; and the Lord gave them to me.”

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2. The importance of the Commandment: ‘Honor your father and your mother, revealed to the people on Mount Sinai.

Many times the Word of God demands the fulfillment of this Commandment.

(Exodus 20:12) “12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.”

(Deuteronomy 5:16) “16 ‘Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, that your days may be long, and that it may be well with you in the land which the Lord your God is giving you.”

(Leviticus 19:3) “3 ‘Every one of you shall revere his mother and his father, and keep My Sabbaths: I am the Lord your God.”

(Proverbs 1:8-9) “8 My son, hear the instruction of your father, And do not forsake the law of your mother;
9 For they will be a graceful ornament on your head, And chains about your neck.”
   
(Proverbs 6:20-21) “20 My son, keep your father’s command, And do not forsake the law of your mother.
21 Bind them continually upon your heart; Tie them around your neck.”

(Proverbs 10:1) “10 The proverbs of Solomon: A wise son makes a glad father, But a foolish son is the grief of his mother.”

(Proverbs 15:20) “20 A wise son makes a father glad, But a foolish man despises his mother.”

(Proverbs 17:6) “6 Children’s children are the crown of old men, And the glory of children is their father.”

(Proverbs 23:22) “22 Listen to your father who begot you, And do not despise your mother when she is old.”

(Proverbs 23:25) “25 Let your father and your mother be glad, And let her who bore you rejoice.”

(Ephesians 6:1-3) “6 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise:3 “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.””

(Colossians 3:20) “20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.”

(Ben Sira 3:1-16) “1 Listen to me your father, O children; act accordingly, that you may be kept in safety. 2 For the Lord honors a father above his children, and he confirms a mother's right over her children. 3Those who honor their father atone for sins, 4 and those who respect their mother are like those who lay up treasure. 5 Those who honor their father will have joy in their own children, and when they pray they will be heard. 6 Those who respect their father will have long life, and those who honor their mother obey the Lord; 7 they will serve their parents as their masters. 8 Honor your father by word and deed, that his blessing may come upon you. 9 For a father's blessing strengthens the houses of the children, but a mother's curse uproots their foundations. 10 Do not glorify yourself by dishonoring your father, for your father's dishonor is no glory to you. 11 The glory of one's father is one's own glory, and it is a disgrace for children not to respect their mother. 12 My child, help your father in his old age, and do not grieve him as long as he lives; 13even if his mind fails, be patient with him; because you have all your faculties do not despise him.14 For kindness to a father will not be forgotten, and will be credited to you against your sins; 15in the day of your distress it will be remembered in your favor; like frost in fair weather, your sins will melt away. 16 Whoever forsakes a father is like a blasphemer, and whoever angers a mother is cursed by the Lord.”

(Ben Sira 7:27-28) “27 With all your heart honor your father, and do not forget the birth pangs of your mother. 28 Remember that it was of your parents you were born; how can you repay what they have given to you?”

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3. The punishment for not fulfilling the commandment of God.

(Exodus 21:15) “15 “And he who strikes his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.”

(Exodus 21:17) “17 “And he who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.”

(Leviticus 18:7-20) “7 The nakedness of your father or the nakedness of your mother you shall not uncover. She is your mother; you shall not uncover her nakedness. 8 The nakedness of your father’s wife you shall not uncover; it is your father’s nakedness. 9 The nakedness of your sister, the daughter of your father, or the daughter of your mother, whether born at home or elsewhere, their nakedness you shall not uncover. 10 The nakedness of your son’s daughter or your daughter’s daughter, their nakedness you shall not uncover; for theirs is your own nakedness.11 The nakedness of your father’s wife’s daughter, begotten by your father—she is your sister—you shall not uncover her nakedness. 12 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s sister; she is near of kin to your father. 13 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother’s sister, for she is near of kin to your mother. 14 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s brother. You shall not approach his wife; she is your aunt. 15 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your daughter-in-law—she is your son’s wife—you shall not uncover her nakedness. 16 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your brother’s wife; it is your brother’s nakedness. 17 You shall not uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter, nor shall you take her son’s daughter or her daughter’s daughter, to uncover her nakedness. Theyare near of kin to her. It is wickedness. 18 Nor shall you take a woman as a rival to her sister, to uncover her nakedness while the other is alive.
19 ‘Also you shall not approach a woman to uncover her nakedness as long as she is in her customary impurity. 20 Moreover you shall not lie carnally with your neighbor’s wife, to defile yourself with her.”

(Leviticus 20:9, 11-12, 14, 17-23) “9 ‘For everyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death. He has cursed his father or his mother. His blood shall be upon him.
11 The man who lies with his father’s wife has uncovered his father’s nakedness; both of them shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them. 12 If a man lies with his daughter-in-law, both of them shall surely be put to death. They have committed perversion. Their blood shall be upon them.
14 If a man marries a woman and her mother, it is wickedness. They shall be burned with fire, both he and they, that there may be no wickedness among you.
17 ‘If a man takes his sister, his father’s daughter or his mother’s daughter, and sees her nakedness and she sees his nakedness, it is a wicked thing. And they shall be cut off in the sight of their people. He has uncovered his sister’s nakedness. He shall bear his guilt. 18 If a man lies with a woman during her sickness and uncovers her nakedness, he has exposed her flow, and she has uncovered the flow of her blood. Both of them shall be cut off from their people.
19 ‘You shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother’s sister nor of your father’s sister, for that would uncover his near of kin. They shall bear their guilt. 20 If a man lies with his uncle’s wife, he has uncovered his uncle’s nakedness. They shall bear their sin; they shall die childless. 21 If a man takes his brother’s wife, it is an unclean thing. He has uncovered his brother’s nakedness. They shall be childless.
22 ‘You shall therefore keep all My statutes and all My judgments, and perform them, that the land where I am bringing you to dwell may not vomit you out. 23 And you shall not walk in the statutes of the nation which I am casting out before you; for they commit all these things, and therefore I abhor them.”

(Deuteronomy 27:16, 20, 22-23) "16 ‘Cursed is the one who treats his father or his mother with contempt.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
20 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with his father’s wife, because he has uncovered his father’s bed.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
22 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with his sister, the daughter of his father or the daughter of his mother.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
23 ‘Cursed is the one who lies with his mother-in-law.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’”

(Proverbs 20:20) “20 Whoever curses his father or his mother, His lamp will be put out in deep darkness.”

(Proverbs 28:24) “24 Whoever robs his father or his mother, And says, “It is no transgression,” The same is companion to a destroyer.”

(Proverbs 30:11-12) “11 There is a generation that curses its father, And does not bless its mother.
12 There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes, Yet is not washed from its filthiness.”

(Proverbs 30:17) “17 The eye that mocks his father, And scorns obedience to his mother, The ravens of the valley will pick it out, And the young eagles will eat it.”

(Matthew 15:4) “4 For God commanded, saying, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’”

(Mark 7:10) “10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’”

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God defends the elderly and widows.

(Leviticus 19:32) “32 ‘You shall rise before the gray headed and honor the presence of an old man, and fear your God: I am the Lord.”

(Exodus 22:21-22) “21 “You shall neither mistreat a stranger nor oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
22 “You shall not afflict any widow or fatherless child.”

(Deuteronomy 24:17) “17 “You shall not pervert justice due the stranger or the fatherless, nor take a widow’s garment as a pledge.”

(Deuteronomy 27:19) “19 ‘Cursed is the one who perverts the justice due the stranger, the fatherless, and widow.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’”

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4. Disobedience of the Israelites and God's displeasure.

“In you they have made light of father and mother”

(Ezekiel 22:1-16) Sins of Jerusalem
“22 Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Now, son of man, will you judge, will you judge the bloody city? Yes, show her all her abominations! 3 Then say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “The city sheds blood in her own midst, that her time may come; and she makes idols within herself to defile herself. 4 You have become guilty by the blood which you have shed, and have defiled yourself with the idols which you have made. You have caused your days to draw near, and have come to the end of your years; therefore I have made you a reproach to the nations, and a mockery to all countries. 5 Those near and those far from you will mock you as infamous and full of tumult.
6 “Look, the princes of Israel: each one has used his power to shed blood in you. 7 In you they have made light of father and mother; in your midst they have oppressed the stranger; in you they have mistreated the fatherless and the widow. 8 You have despised My holy things and profaned My Sabbaths. 9 In you are men who slander to cause bloodshed; in you are those who eat on the mountains; in your midst they commit lewdness. 10 In you men uncover their fathers’ nakedness; in you they violate women who are set apart during their impurity. 11 One commits abomination with his neighbor’s wife; another lewdly defiles his daughter-in-law; and another in you violates his sister, his father’s daughter. 12 In you they take bribes to shed blood; you take usury and increase; you have made profit from your neighbors by extortion, and have forgotten Me,” says the Lord God.
13 “Behold, therefore, I beat My fists at the dishonest profit which you have made, and at the bloodshed which has been in your midst. 14 Can your heart endure, or can your hands remain strong, in the days when I shall deal with you? I, the Lord, have spoken, and will do it. 15 I will scatter you among the nations, disperse you throughout the countries, and remove your filthiness completely from you. 16 You shall defile yourself in the sight of the nations; then you shall know that I am the Lord.”’””

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5. What the Lord Jesus Christ asks for and expects.

The Lord Jesus rebukes the scribes and Pharisees for transgressing the Commandment of God.

“But you say, ‘Whoever says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is a gift to God”— then he need not honor his father or mother.’”

(Matthew 15:1-8) Defilement Comes from Within
“15 Then the scribes and Pharisees who were from Jerusalem came to Jesus, saying, 2 “Why do Your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.”
3 He answered and said to them, “Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition? 4 For God commanded, saying, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’ 5 But you say, ‘Whoever says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is a gift to God”— 6 then he need not honor his father or mother.’ Thus you have made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition. 7 Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying:
8 ‘These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me.”

(Mark 7:9-13) “9 He said to them, “All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition. 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’ 11 But you say, ‘If a man says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban”—’ (that is, a gift to God), 12 then you no longer let him do anything for his father or his mother, 13 making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.””

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The Lord Jesus Christ reminds us that to enter eternal life it is necessary to fulfill the Commandments.

(Matthew 19:16-21) Jesus Counsels the Rich Young Ruler
“16 Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?”
17 So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
18 He said to Him, “Which ones?” Jesus said, “‘You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not bear false witness,’ 19 ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”
20 The young man said to Him, “All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?”
21 Jesus said to him, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.””

(Mark 10:17-21) Jesus Counsels the Rich Young Ruler
“17 Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?”
18 So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. 19 You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Do not defraud,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’”
20 And he answered and said to Him, “Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth.”
21 Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.””

(Luke 18:18-23) Jesus Counsels the Rich Young Ruler
“18 Now a certain ruler asked Him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
19 So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. 20 You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’ ”
21 And he said, “All these things I have kept from my youth.”
22 So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”
23 But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich.”

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Now, when we find such words of the Lord Jesus Christ as:

“If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.”

"He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me."

…how can we understand these words?

The Lord Jesus Christ calls us to break all family ties to serve Him, He asks us to leave everything for the sake of the gospel. This means, not only to leave the family, that is, parents, children, but also all goods, give up everything you have. To abhor not only the family but even our own life, to leave all that represents by itself an opposition to the fulfillment of the will of God, family members, friends, activities, property, etc..

(Luke 14:25-33) Leaving All to Follow Christ
“25 Now great multitudes went with Him. And He turned and said to them, 26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. 27 And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 28 For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it— 29 lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish’? 31 Or what king, going to make war against another king, does not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32 Or else, while the other is still a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks conditions of peace. 33 So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple.”

(Matthew 10:37-38) “37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38 And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.”

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As the Lord Himself left His own family, so He asks us to leave our own.

"whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother."

"He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it."

(Matthew 12:46-50) Jesus’ Mother and Brothers Send for Him
“46 While He was still talking to the multitudes, behold, His mother and brothers stood outside, seeking to speak with Him. 47 Then one said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak with You.”
48 But He answered and said to the one who told Him, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?” 49 And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! 50 For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.””

(Mark 3:31-35) Jesus’ Mother and Brothers Send for Him
“31 Then His brothers and His mother came, and standing outside they sent to Him, calling Him. 32 And a multitude was sitting around Him; and they said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are outside seeking You.”
33 But He answered them, saying, “Who is My mother, or My brothers?” 34 And He looked around in a circle at those who sat about Him, and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! 35 For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.””

(Luke 8:19-21) Jesus’ Mother and Brothers Come to Him
“19 Then His mother and brothers came to Him, and could not approach Him because of the crowd. 20 And it was told Him by some, who said, “Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, desiring to see You.”
21 But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.””

(Luke 11:27-28) Keeping the Word
“27 And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!”
28 But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!””

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"So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple"

(Luke 14:33) “33 So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple.”

(Matthew 8:21-22) “21 Then another of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.”
22 But Jesus said to him, “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead.””

(Luke 9:59-62) “59 Then He said to another, “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.”
60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.”
61 And another also said, “Lord, I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.”
62 But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.””

(Mark 10:28-31) “28 Then Peter began to say to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You.”
29 So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, 30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.””

(Matthew 19:27-30) “27 Then Peter answered and said to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?”
28 So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life. 30 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

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The disciple of the Lord must leave everything for the sake of the Lord Jesus Christ, His gospel and kingdom of God:

"for My sake and the gospel’s,"

(Mark 10:29) “29 So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s,”

"but you go and preach the kingdom of God"

(Luke 9:60) “60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.””

Because the members of the true family of God are those who do the will of God:

(Mark 3:35) “35 For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.””

(Luke 8:21) “21 But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.””

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6. Dissension in families.

The Lord Jesus Christ, a cause of division.

(Micah 7:5-6) “5 Do not trust in a friend; Do not put your confidence in a companion; Guard the doors of your mouth From her who lies in your bosom.
6 For son dishonors father, Daughter rises against her mother, Daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; A man’s enemies are the men of his own household.”

(Matthew 10:34-36) Christ Brings Division
“34 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. 35 For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; 36 and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his ownhousehold.’”

(Luke 12:49-53) Christ Brings Division
“49 “I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how distressed I am till it is accomplished! 51 Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division. 52 For from now on five in one house will be divided: three against two, and two against three. 53 Father will be divided against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.””

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The Lord Jesus Christ reveals that in a family, some will be chosen by God, who will hear His voice, and will follow Him, while others will be left.

(Jeremiah 3:14) “14 “Return, O backsliding children,” says the Lord; “for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion.”

(Matthew 24:38-42) “38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark,39 and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.”

(Luke 17:34-36) “34 I tell you, in that night there will be two men in one bed: the one will be taken and the other will be left. 35 Two women will be grinding together: the one will be taken and the other left. 36 Two men will be in the field: the one will be taken and the other left.””

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7. The blessing in families. The descendants of the chosen.

Although, there are also families blessed by God.

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The birth of the prophet John the Baptist.

"Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet …And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers,”

"He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ …to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

(Malachi 4:5-6) “5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.
6 And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.””

(Luke 1:11-17) “11 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him.
13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. 15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. 16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. 17 He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.””

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"They shall not labor in vain, Nor bring forth children for trouble; For they shall be the descendants of the blessed of the Lord, And their offspring with them."

(Isaiah 65:18-24) “18 But be glad and rejoice forever in what I create; For behold, I create Jerusalem as a rejoicing, And her people a joy.
19 I will rejoice in Jerusalem, And joy in My people; The voice of weeping shall no longer be heard in her, Nor the voice of crying.
20 “No more shall an infant from there live but a few days, Nor an old man who has not fulfilled his days; For the child shall die one hundred years old, But the sinner being one hundred years old shall be accursed.
21 They shall build houses and inhabit them; They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 They shall not build and another inhabit; They shall not plant and another eat; For as the days of a tree, so shall be the days of My people, And My elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.
23 They shall not labor in vain, Nor bring forth children for trouble; For they shall be the descendants of the blessed of the Lord, And their offspring with them.
24 “It shall come to pass That before they call, I will answer; And while they are still speaking, I will hear.”

(Isaiah 66:22-23) “22 “For as the new heavens and the new earth Which I will make shall remain before Me,” says the Lord, “So shall your descendants and your name remain.
23 And it shall come to pass That from one New Moon to another, And from one Sabbath to another, All flesh shall come to worship before Me,” says the Lord.”

(Psalm 25:12-14) “12 Who is the man that fears the Lord? Him shall He teach in the way He chooses.
13 He himself shall dwell in prosperity, And his descendants shall inherit the earth.
14 The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, And He will show them His covenant.”

(Psalm 37:25-26) “25 I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread.
26 He is ever merciful, and lends; And his descendants are blessed.”

(Psalm 102:28) “28 The children of Your servants will continue, And their descendants will be established before You.””

(Psalm 103:17-18) “17 But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting On those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children,
18 To such as keep His covenant, And to those who remember His commandments to do them.”

(Acts 2:39) “39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.””

(Ben Sira 4:11-16) “11 Wisdom teaches her children and gives help to those who seek her. 12 Whoever loves her loves life, and those who seek her from early morning are filled with joy. 13 Whoever holds her fast inherits glory, and the Lord blesses the place she enters. 14 Those who serve her minister to the Holy One; the Lord loves those who love her. 15 Those who obey her will judge the nations, and all who listen to her will live secure. 16 If they remain faithful, they will inherit her; their descendants will also obtain her.”

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Mary, Martha and Lazarus.

(Luke 10:38-42) Mary and Martha Worship and Serve
“38 Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”
41 And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.””

(John 11:1-5) The Death of Lazarus
“11 Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 It was that Mary who anointed the Lord with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. 3 Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.”
4 When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.”

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"‘Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon whose surname is Peter, who will tell you words by which you and all your household will be saved.’"

(Acts 10:1-48) Cornelius Sends a Delegation
“10 There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, 2 a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. 3 About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, “Cornelius!”
4 And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, “What is it, lord?”
So he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God. 5 Now send men to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter. 6 He is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea. He will tell you what you must do.” 7 And when the angel who spoke to him had departed, Cornelius called two of his household servants and a devout soldier from among those who waited on him continually. 8 So when he had explained all these things to them, he sent them to Joppa.
9 The next day, as they went on their journey and drew near the city, Peter went up on the housetop to pray, about the sixth hour. 10 Then he became very hungry and wanted to eat; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance 11 and saw heaven opened and an object like a great sheet bound at the four corners, descending to him and let down to the earth. 12 In it were all kinds of four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. 13 And a voice came to him, “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.”
14 But Peter said, “Not so, Lord! For I have never eaten anything common or unclean.”
15 And a voice spoke to him again the second time, “What God has cleansed you must not call common.” 16 This was done three times. And the object was taken up into heaven again.
17 Now while Peter wondered within himself what this vision which he had seen meant, behold, the men who had been sent from Cornelius had made inquiry for Simon’s house, and stood before the gate. 18 And they called and asked whether Simon, whose surname was Peter, was lodging there.
19 While Peter thought about the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are seeking you. 20 Arise therefore, go down and go with them, doubting nothing; for I have sent them.”
21 Then Peter went down to the men who had been sent to him from Cornelius, and said, “Yes, I am he whom you seek. For what reason have you come?”
22 And they said, “Cornelius the centurion, a just man, one who fears God and has a good reputation among all the nation of the Jews, was divinely instructed by a holy angel to summon you to his house, and to hear words from you.” 23 Then he invited them in and lodged them.
On the next day Peter went away with them, and some brethren from Joppa accompanied him.
24 And the following day they entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was waiting for them, and had called together his relatives and close friends.25 As Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him. 26 But Peter lifted him up, saying, “Stand up; I myself am also a man.” 27 And as he talked with him, he went in and found many who had come together. 28 Then he said to them, “You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation. But God has shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean. 29 Therefore I came without objection as soon as I was sent for. I ask, then, for what reason have you sent for me?”
30 So Cornelius said, “Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing, 31 and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard, and your alms are remembered in the sight of God. 32 Send therefore to Joppa and call Simon here, whose surname is Peter. He is lodging in the house of Simon, a tanner, by the sea. When he comes, he will speak to you.’ 33 So I sent to you immediately, and you have done well to come. Now therefore, we are all present before God, to hear all the things commanded you by God.”
34 Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. 35 But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him. 36 The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ—He is Lord of all— 37 that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached: 38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. 39 And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree. 40 Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly, 41 not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead. 42 And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead. 43 To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.”
44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word. 45 And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. 46 For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God.
Then Peter answered, 47 “Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?”48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days.”

(Acts 11:1-18) Peter Defends God’s Grace
“11 Now the apostles and brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God. 2 And when Peter came up to Jerusalem, those of the circumcision contended with him, 3 saying, “You went in to uncircumcised men and ate with them!”
4 But Peter explained it to them in order from the beginning, saying: 5 “I was in the city of Joppa praying; and in a trance I saw a vision, an object descending like a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came to me. 6 When I observed it intently and considered, I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. 7 And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ 8 But I said, ‘Not so, Lord! For nothing common or unclean has at any time entered my mouth.’ 9 But the voice answered me again from heaven, ‘What God has cleansed you must not call common.’ 10 Now this was done three times, and all were drawn up again into heaven.11 At that very moment, three men stood before the house where I was, having been sent to me from Caesarea. 12 Then the Spirit told me to go with them, doubting nothing. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house. 13 And he told us how he had seen an angel standing in his house, who said to him, ‘Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon whose surname is Peter, 14 who will tell you words by which you and all your household will be saved.’ 15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning. 16 Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?”
18 When they heard these things they became silent; and they glorified God, saying, “Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life.””

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“And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”

(Acts 16:16-33) Paul and Silas Imprisoned
“16 Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. 17 This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” 18 And this she did for many days.
But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour. 19 But when her masters saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to the authorities.
20 And they brought them to the magistrates, and said, “These men, being Jews, exceedingly trouble our city; 21 and they teach customs which are not lawful for us, being Romans, to receive or observe.” 22 Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. 23 And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. 24 Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.
25 But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed. 27 And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. 28 But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.”
29 Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
31 So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” 32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. 33 And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized.”

Those born again or raised in the spirit, do not look at things in the world that are temporary, but their eyes are on the above things that are eternal.

1. Men who entered the Kingdom of God are born again.
A. A man that is not born again, that is, born of water and the Spirit, can neither see nor enter the kingdom of God.
B. River of water of life, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.
C. To be born of water.
D. To be born of the Spirit or to be born again.

2. First resurrection. The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.

3. That which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

4. Men who are born again die to sin and live in the Spirit.
A. The great battle between the soul and the flesh.
B. Those who are in the Lord Jesus Christ, are dead to sin, and buried with Him through baptism into death.

5. “Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.”

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1. Men who entered the Kingdom of God are born again.

A. A man that is not born again, that is, born of water and the Spirit, can neither see nor enter the kingdom of God.

B. River of water of life, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.

C. To be born of water.

D. To be born of the Spirit or to be born again.

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A. A man that is not born again, that is, born of water and the Spirit, can neither see nor enter the kingdom of God.

“Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.”

"flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God"

(John 3:3-6) “3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
4 Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”
5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

(1 Corinthians 15:50) “50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.”

By being ignorant and slaves as a result of living in sin, death and condemnation, we must be born again, raise in the spirit.

But how shall we understand “to be born again”?
Where does come from the regenerative power of "giving life?" No from the flesh, certainly.

Any act or deed that we perform in the flesh can guarantee nothing before the eyes of God.
The revival we need, the renaissance, the transition from death to life, from a son of disobedience, dead in trespasses and sins, to a son of the living God in Jesus Christ is possible only through the Holy Spirit of the Living God.

The Lord Jesus Christ Himself explains the importance of being born again in the Spirit. This revival happens in all those willing to surrender their lives to God, regardless of age and position of the person.

(John 3:1, 3, 5-8) “3 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.
3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.””

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B. River of water of life, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.

“I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring”

(Isaiah 44:1-3) “44 “Yet hear now, O Jacob My servant, And Israel whom I have chosen.
2 Thus says the Lord who made you And formed you from the womb, who will help you: ‘Fear not, O Jacob My servant; And you, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.
3 For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring;”

(Ezekiel 1:22) “22 The likeness of the firmament above the heads of the living creatures was like the color of an awesome crystal, stretched out over their heads.”

(Ezekiel 47:1) “47 Then he brought me back to the door of the temple; and there was water, flowing from under the threshold of the temple toward the east, for the front of the temple faced east; the water was flowing from under the right side of the temple, south of the altar.”

(Revelation 4:6) “6 Before the throne there was a sea of glass, like crystal. And in the midst of the throne, and around the throne, were four living creatures full of eyes in front and in back.”

(Revelation 22:1) “22 And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.”

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C. To be born of water.

To be born of water means to be born by the word of God's truth, and the word can be received, perceived and understood through the Lord Jesus Christ.

The members of the ancient people of Israel drank water from a physical rock but died in the desert.

(Exodus 17:1-7) [ Water from the Rock ]; (Numbers 20:1-13) [ Moses’ Error at Kadesh ]

(Deuteronomy 8:15) “15 who led you through that great and terrible wilderness, in which were fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty land where there was no water; who brought water for you out of the flinty rock;”

God promised to pour water from the spiritual rock on the offspring of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the rock is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

(Isaiah 44:3) “3 For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring;”

(Isaiah 48:19-21) “19 Your descendants also would have been like the sand, And the offspring of your body like the grains of sand; His name would not have been cut off Nor destroyed from before Me.”
20 Go forth from Babylon! Flee from the Chaldeans! With a voice of singing, Declare, proclaim this, Utter it to the end of the earth; Say, “The Lord has redeemed His servant Jacob!”
21 And they did not thirst When He led them through the deserts; He caused the waters to flow from the rock for them; He also split the rock, and the waters gushed out.”

In (Isaiah 55), we read: “Come to the waters;” “Listen carefully to Me” “Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live;”, which means that we should hear the Living Word from the mouth of the Lord, which for us is food and drink that leads to eternal life and satisfies man preventing him from looking for other food, words from the mouths of men.

"Come to the waters"

(Isaiah 55:1-3) “55 “Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price.
2 Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And let your soul delight itself in abundance.
3 Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you— The sure mercies of David.”

“the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”

(John 4:10-14) “10 Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”
11 The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? 12 Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?”
13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.””

(Revelation 21:6) “6 And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.”

(Revelation 22:17) “17 And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.”

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Born again, offspring, renewed as the eagle, baptized or sealed through the Word of Truth.

(Job 29:18-20) “18 “Then I said, ‘I shall die in my nest, And multiply my days as the sand.
19 My root is spread out to the waters, And the dew lies all night on my branch.
20 My glory is fresh within me, And my bow is renewed in my hand.’”

(Psalm 103:2, 5) “2 Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits:
5 Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”

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Men who received the true word of God were baptized with the Holy Spirit.

"Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth,"

(James 1:17-18) “17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. 18 Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.”

"having been born again, (…), through the word of God"

(1 Peter 1:3-4, 23, 25) A Heavenly Inheritance
“3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,
23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,
25 But the word of the Lord endures forever.” Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.”

"after you heard the word of truth, (…), you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,”

(Ephesians 1:13) “13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,”

(Acts 2:41) “41 Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.”

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Born again, offspring, renewed as the eagle, baptized or sealed through the Word of Truth are the ones who receive the true bread from heaven, bread of life; and the true bread is the Lord Jesus Christ.

(Matthew 4:4) “4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’””

(Deuteronomy 8:3) “3 So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord.”

(Luke 13:27-30) “27 But He will say, ‘I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.’ 28 There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out.29 They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit down in the kingdom of God. 30 And indeed there are last who will be first, and there are first who will be last.””

"And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst."
"I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever;"

(John 6:32-51) “32 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
34 Then they said to Him, “Lord, give us this bread always.”
35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. 40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”
41 The Jews then complained about Him, because He said, “I am the bread which came down from heaven.” 42 And they said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that He says, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”
43 Jesus therefore answered and said to them, “Do not murmur among yourselves. 44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’ Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me. 46 Not that anyone has seen the Father, except He who is from God; He has seen the Father. 47 Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. 51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.””

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Whoever fears the Lord will be fed with the bread of learning and with the water of wisdom.

"Bread will be given him, His water will be sure."
"The threshing floors shall be full of wheat, …You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied,"
"He would have fed them also with the finest of wheat"
"And fills you with the finest wheat."

(Ben Sira 15:1-3) “1 Whoever fears the Lord will do this, and whoever holds to the law will obtain wisdom. 2 She will come to meet him like a mother, and like a young bride she will welcome him. 3 She will feed him with the bread of learning, and give him the water of wisdom to drink.”

(Isaiah 33:15-17) “15 He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly, He who despises the gain of oppressions, Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes, Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed, And shuts his eyes from seeing evil:
16 He will dwell on high; His place of defense will be the fortress of rocks; Bread will be given him, His water will be sure.
17 Your eyes will see the King in His beauty; They will see the land that is very far off.”

(Joel 2:23-27) “23 Be glad then, you children of Zion, And rejoice in the Lord your God; For He has given you the former rain faithfully, And He will cause the rain to come down for you— The former rain, And the latter rain in the first month.
24 The threshing floors shall be full of wheat, And the vats shall overflow with new wine and oil.
25 “So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, The crawling locust, The consuming locust, And the chewing locust, My great army which I sent among you.
26 You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, And praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you; And My people shall never be put to shame.
27 Then you shall know that I am in the midst of Israel: I am the Lord your God And there is no other. My people shall never be put to shame.”

(Psalm 81:13-16) “13 “Oh, that My people would listen to Me, That Israel would walk in My ways!
14 I would soon subdue their enemies, And turn My hand against their adversaries.
15 The haters of the Lord would pretend submission to Him, But their fate would endure forever.
16 He would have fed them also with the finest of wheat; And with honey from the rock I would have satisfied you.””

(Psalm 147:12-15) “12 Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem! Praise your God, O Zion!
13 For He has strengthened the bars of your gates; He has blessed your children within you.
14 He makes peace in your borders, And fills you with the finest wheat.
15 He sends out His command to the earth; His word runs very swiftly.”

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The word of the Lord Jesus Christ that dwells in man teaches him wisdom and the Truth of God.

(Daniel 12:3) “3 Those who are wise shall shine Like the brightness of the firmament, And those who turn many to righteousness Like the stars forever and ever.”

(Ben Sira 15:1-3) “1 Whoever fears the Lord will do this, and whoever holds to the law will obtain wisdom. 2 She will come to meet him like a mother, and like a young bride she will welcome him. 3 She will feed him with the bread of learning, and give him the water of wisdom to drink.”

(Colossians 3:16) “16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”

(1 Corinthians 12:13) “13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.”

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D. To be born of the Spirit or to be born again.

To be born of the Spirit or born again means to be resurrected from the dead and anointed or baptized with the Holy Spirit of God through the Lord Jesus Christ.

(John 15:26) “26 “But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.”

(John 16:7) “7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.”

(Luke 24:49) “49 Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.””

(Acts 1:4-5) “4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father,“which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; 5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.””

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(John 7:37-39) The Promise of the Holy Spirit
“37 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. 38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” 39 But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.”

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He who establishes us in Christ and has anointed us through the Lord Jesus Christ is God Most High.

“…the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior,”

(John 14:15-17) Jesus Promises Another Helper
“15 “If you love Me, keep My commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.”

(Luke 11:13) “13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!””

(John 14:26) “26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.”

(2 Corinthians 1:21-22) “21 Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, 22 who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.”

(Titus 3:4-7) “4 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, 5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

(Galatians 4:5-7) “5 to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.
6 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” 7 Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.”

(1 Thessalonians 4:6-8) “6 that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified. 7 For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. 8 Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit.”

(Ephesians 1:17) “17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him,”

(Hebrews 2:4) “4 God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?”

(Acts 5:32) “32 And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him.””

(Acts 15:8) “8 So God, who knows the heart, acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He did to us,”

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Those born of the Spirit or born again are children, spiritual children, of whom the Lord Jesus Christ speaks, because only those born again can see or enter the kingdom of God.

(Matthew 19:14) “14 But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.””

(Mark 10:14-15) “14 But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God. 15 Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it.””

(Luke 18:16-17) “16 But Jesus called them to Him and said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God.17 Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it.””

(1 Corinthians 3:1) Sectarianism Is Carnal
“3 And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ.”

It is to children in Christ that God reveals wisdom.

(Luke 10:21) “21 In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.”

Children in the Lord Jesus Christ are the ones who worship the Father in spirit and truth.

(John 4:21-24) “21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.””

(Psalm 8:2) “2 Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have ordained strength, Because of Your enemies, That You may silence the enemy and the avenger.”

(Matthew 21:14-16) “14 Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. 15 But when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that He did, and the children crying out in the temple and saying, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were indignant 16 and said to Him, “Do You hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise’?””

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The child in the Lord Jesus Christ who teaches the wisdom of the Kingdom of God is a person born again through the Holy Spirit.

(Matthew 18:4-6) “4 Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me.
6 “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea.”

(Mark 9:36-37) “36 Then He took a little child and set him in the midst of them. And when He had taken him in His arms, He said to them, 37 “Whoever receives one of these little children in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me, receives not Me but Him who sent Me.””

(Luke 9:47-48) “47 And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a little child and set him by Him, 48 and said to them, “Whoever receives this little child in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me receives Him who sent Me. For he who is least among you all will be great.””

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2. First resurrection. The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.

(Exodus 3:4-6) “4 So when the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!”And he said, “Here I am.”
5 Then He said, “Do not draw near this place. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.” 6 Moreover He said, “I am the God of your father—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look upon God.”

(Matthew 22:31-32) “31 But concerning the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was spoken to you by God, saying, 32 ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.””

(Mark 12:26-27) “26 But concerning the dead, that they rise, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the burning bush passage, how God spoke to him, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? 27 He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living. You are therefore greatly mistaken.””

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Born of the Spirit or born again means that the soul of man awakes from the dead, this is the first resurrection.

“Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God;”

God raises the poor from the dust, raises the dead of His people, opens our graves, brings us up from our graves, puts in our hearts of His Holy Spirit.

(Acts 26:8) “8 Why should it be thought incredible by you that God raises the dead?”

(1 Samuel 2:8) “8 He raises the poor from the dust And lifts the beggar from the ash heap, To set them among princes And make them inherit the throne of glory. “For the pillars of the earth are the Lord’s, And He has set the world upon them.”

(Psalm 113:7-8) “7 He raises the poor out of the dust, And lifts the needy out of the ash heap,
8 That He may seat him with princes— With the princes of His people.”

(Hosea 6:2) “2 After two days He will revive us; On the third day He will raise us up, That we may live in His sight.”

(Isaiah 26:19) “19 Your dead shall live; Together with my dead body they shall arise. Awake and sing, you who dwell in dust; For your dew is like the dew of herbs, And the earth shall cast out the dead.”

(Ezekiel 37:5, 12-14) “5 Thus says the Lord God to these bones: “Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live.
12 Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. 13 Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. 14 I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken it and performed it,” says the Lord.’””

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"Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live."

(John 5:24-29) Life and Judgment Are Through the Son
“24 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. 25 Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, 27 and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.”

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The true children of God, or conversely, children of the resurrection are those whom God the Father raises through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ in this present time and fills with His Holy Spirit.

(John 14:19) “19 “A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also.”

(Ephesians 2:5-7) “5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”

(Colossians 2:12-13) “12 buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses,”

(Colossians 3:1) Not Carnality but Christ
“3 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.”

(2 Corinthians 5:17) “17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

(Romans 6:4) “4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.”

(Romans 8:10-11) “10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”

(Revelation 20:4-6) “4 And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.”

(Ephesians 5:13-14) “13 But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. 14 Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.””

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Only after having been born of the Spirit through the Lord Jesus Christ one can see the Kingdom or enter the Kingdom of God.

(John 3:6) “6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

(Psalm 17:15) “15 As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.”

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3. That which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

(John 3:6) “6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

(Matthew 22:29-30) “29 Jesus answered and said to them, “You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God. 30 For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in heaven.”

(Mark 12:24-25) “24 Jesus answered and said to them, “Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God? 25 For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.”

(Luke 20:34-38) “34 Jesus answered and said to them, “The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage. 35 But those who are counted worthy to attain that age, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage; 36 nor can they die anymore, for they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. 37 But even Moses showed in the burning bush passage that the dead are raised, when he called the Lord ‘the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ 38 For He is not the God of the dead but of the living, for all live to Him.””

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“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?”

(1 Corinthians 3:16-17) “16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.”

“Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ?”
“Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?”

(1 Corinthians 6:15-20) “15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? Certainly not! 16 Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? For “the two,” He says, “shall become one flesh.”17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.
18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

“the body is for the Lord, and the Lord for the body”; “those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.”

(1 Corinthians 6:13) “13 Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.”

(2 Corinthians 5:15-17) “15 and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.
16 Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

(Philippians 1:20) “20 according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.”

(Romans 8:10-11) “10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”

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4. Men who are born again die to sin and live in the Spirit.

A. The great battle between the soul and the flesh.

B. Those who are in the Lord Jesus Christ, are dead to sin, and buried with Him through baptism into death.

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A. The great battle between the soul and the flesh.

(John 6:63) “63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.”

(Matthew 26:41; Mark 14:38) “41 Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.””

Our Lord Jesus Christ asks us to deny ourselves to the thoughts of our weak flesh.

(Mark 8:34) Take Up the Cross and Follow Him
“34 When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.”

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Live as pilgrims, watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation; abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul.

(Luke 21:34-36) The Importance of Watching
“34 “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. 35 For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.””

(1 Peter 2:11) “11 Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul,”

(Galatians 5:16-17) “16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.”

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“that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

(Romans 6:15-23) From Slaves of Sin to Slaves of God
“15 What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Certainly not! 16 Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? 17 But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 19 I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.
20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21 What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. 22 But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

(Romans 8:1-9) Free from Indwelling Sin
“8 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. 3 For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh,4 that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. 8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.”

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Do not fulfill the lust of the flesh, as in your ignorance.

“that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts,”

“Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.”

(Ephesians 2:3) “3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.”

(Colossians 3:9-10) “9 Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him,”

(Ephesians 4:22-24) “22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.”

(Romans 13:12-14) “12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. 14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”

(1 Peter 1:13-14) Living Before God Our Father
“13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance;”

(Colossians 3:5-6) “5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience,”

(Galatians 5:16) “16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.”

(Romans 6:12-14) “12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. 13 And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. 14 For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.”

(Titus 2:11-13) “11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, 12 teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,”

(2 Corinthians 7:1) “7 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”

Why?

Because “those who are in the flesh cannot please God”

(Romans 6:21) “21 What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.”

(Romans 8:5-8) “5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. 8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.”

(Romans 8:13) “13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.”

(Galatians 6:8) “8 For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.”

(1 John 2:16) “16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.”

Because those who live fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, are by nature children of wrath.

(Ephesians 2:3) “3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.”

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B. Those who are in the Lord Jesus Christ, are dead to sin, and buried with Him through baptism into death.

(1 Corinthians 15:36) “36 Foolish one, what you sow is not made alive unless it dies.”

(Colossians 2:11-12) “11 In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.”

(Romans 6:1-11) Dead to Sin, Alive to God
“6 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? 3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

(Romans 7:4) “4 Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another—to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God.”

(Romans 8:10-12) “10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors—not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.”

(Colossians 2:20-22) “20 Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations— 21 “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” 22 which all concern things which perish with the using—according to the commandments and doctrines of men?”

(Colossians 3:3) “3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”

(2 Timothy 2:11-12) “11 This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him.
12 If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us.”

(Romans 8:35-39) “35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”
37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

(2 Corinthians 4:7-11) Cast Down but Unconquered
“7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. 8 We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— 10 always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. 11 For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.”

(1 Corinthians 15:31) “31 I affirm, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.”

(2 Peter 1:4) “4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”

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“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me;”

(Galatians 2:20) “20 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.”

“our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

(Galatians 5:22-26) “22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”

(Galatians 6:14) “14 But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

Dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord; being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

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5. “Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.”

Look unto our Lord Jesus Christ who is sitting at the right hand of God.

(Colossians 3:1-4) Not Carnality but Christ
“3 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.”

(Hebrews 12:1-2) The Race of Faith
“12 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

(2 Corinthians 4:7,16-18) “7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.
“16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. 17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

The follower of the Lord Jesus Christ shall covet neither gold nor silver, preferring the wisdom from above.

Shall we work in the world to get the money or seek the will of the Eternal God, the Word of God and serve the Lord Jesus Christ?

(1 Corinthians 1:18) Christ the Power and Wisdom of God
“18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”

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1. The follower of the Lord Jesus Christ and the world surrounding him.

2. The duty of the follower of the Lord Jesus Christ is to abstain from what the earthy world offers. Go out from Babylon.

3. The danger of having friendship with the world. The earthy world is a mortal enemy for those who want to please God.

4. Spells of the world.

5. The law and wisdom of God are better Than thousands of coins of gold and silver.

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1. The follower of the Lord Jesus Christ and the world surrounding him.

To understand the will of God and keep His commandments it is very important to recognize the meaning of the world around us. The whole world is opposed to God and His Law.

(Hosea 1:2) “2 When the Lord began to speak by Hosea, the Lord said to Hosea: “Go, take yourself a wife of harlotry And children of harlotry, For the land has committed great harlotry By departing from the Lord.””

(Hosea 4:1-2) “4 Hear the word of the Lord, You children of Israel, For the Lord brings a charge against the inhabitants of the land: “There is no truth or mercy Or knowledge of God in the land.
2 By swearing and lying, Killing and stealing and committing adultery, They break all restraint, With bloodshed upon bloodshed.”

(Psalm 107:34) “34 A fruitful land into barrenness, For the wickedness of those who dwell in it.”

The "world" is the fallen nature of man shaping the framework of society according to his own tendency.

(Job 9:24) “24 The earth is given into the hand of the wicked. He covers the faces of its judges. If it is not He, who else could it be?”

(2 Esdras 8:46) “46 He answered me and said, "Things that are present are for those who live now, and things that are future are for those who will live hereafter.”

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The whole world lies under the sway of wickedness, under the power of the wicked one to those who believe in the Word of God, while millions of human beings having eyes, do not see it.

(Luke 4:6) “6 And the devil said to Him, “All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.”

Satan became the governor of this world.

“…this has been delivered to me” – truly, “the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.”

(1 John 5:19) “19 We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.”

(Revelation 12:12) “12 Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.””

(Revelation 18:1-2) The Fall of Babylon the Great
“18 After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory.2 And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird!”

The power of death is in the hands of Satan.

(Hebrews 2:14) “14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,”

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The throne of iniquity.

(Revelation 2:13) “13 “I know your works, and where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is. And you hold fast to My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days in which Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells.”

(Psalm 94:20) “20 Shall the throne of iniquity, which devises evil by law, Have fellowship with You?”

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2. The duty of the follower of the Lord Jesus Christ is to abstain from what the earthy world offers. Go out from Babylon.

Christians are in the world, and can not leave it, they have to live in it as long as the Lord has directed them.

(John 17:15) “15 I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.”

(1 Corinthians 5:9-11) “9 I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. 10 Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner—not even to eat with such a person.”

It is forbidden for them to love the world. Their "treasure", "inheritance" or "lot" is elsewhere.

(Philippians 3:20) “20 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,”

(1 Corinthians 2:12) “12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.”

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And not only it is forbidden for them to love the world, but the Lord Jesus Christ even warns that the world opposed to God hates the Lord's followers.

(John 15:18-19) “18 “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”

(1 John 3:13) “13 Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you.”

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God calls us to depart from the world, to go out from the midst of Babylon, to deliver our lives from the fierce anger of the Lord, lest we share in her sins, and lest we receive of her plagues. Do not be cut off in her iniquity.

(2 Corinthians 6:14-18) “14 Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? 15 And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? 16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said:
“I will dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people.”
17 Therefore “Come out from among them And be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, And I will receive you.”
18 “I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the Lord Almighty.””

(Isaiah 52:11-12) “11 Depart! Depart! Go out from there, Touch no unclean thing; Go out from the midst of her, Be clean, You who bear the vessels of the Lord.
12 For you shall not go out with haste, Nor go by flight; For the Lord will go before you, And the God of Israel will be your rear guard.”

(Jeremiah 51:44-45) “44 I will punish Bel in Babylon, And I will bring out of his mouth what he has swallowed; And the nations shall not stream to him anymore. Yes, the wall of Babylon shall fall.
45 “My people, go out of the midst of her! And let everyone deliver himself from the fierce anger of the Lord.”

(Revelation 18:3-5) “3 For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury.”
4 And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.5 For her sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities.”

(Jeremiah 51:6) “6 Flee from the midst of Babylon, And every one save his life! Do not be cut off in her iniquity, For this is the time of the Lord’s vengeance; He shall recompense her.”

(Isaiah 48:20) “20 Go forth from Babylon! Flee from the Chaldeans! With a voice of singing, Declare, proclaim this, Utter it to the end of the earth; Say, “The Lord has redeemed His servant Jacob!””
   
(Jeremiah 50:8) “8 “Move from the midst of Babylon, Go out of the land of the Chaldeans; And be like the rams before the flocks.”

(Zechariah 2:6-8) “6 “Up, up! Flee from the land of the north,” says the Lord; “for I have spread you abroad like the four winds of heaven,” says the Lord. 7 “Up, Zion! Escape, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon.”
8 For thus says the Lord of hosts: “He sent Me after glory, to the nations which plunder you; for he who touches you touches the apple of His eye.”

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3. The danger of having friendship with the world. The earthy world is a mortal enemy for those who want to please God.

The world in which we live is a mortal enemy to those who seek the truth of God.

(2 Corinthians 7:10) “10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.”

This world, on which so much money, time and admiration is spent, is declared an "enemy of God." It is forbidden for believers in God and the servants of the Lord Jesus Christ to "conform" to it and put on it their affection.

(1 John 2:15-16) Do Not Love the World
“15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.”

Those looking for some way to please the world or to follow human doctrines, are refusing to do the Will of the Father.

(James 4:4) “4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.”

All that is in the world, all its "wonders" that come from man to man and not from God the Father, all the pleasures of sin and the cares of this mortal life set us aside from God, from the Truth of the Spiritual Kingdom of from the salvation of the soul.

The things of this world, materialism, desire for fame, power and prosperity, abundance of goods, satisfaction of desires, multiplication of amusement and entertainment, complacency and debauchery to do own will, represent the spiritual death.

The Lord Jesus Christ teaches us to hate our own life.

(John 12:25) “25 He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.”

(Luke 14:26) “26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.”

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If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him; if love is not in him, then neither the Holy Spirit.

(1 John 2:15) “15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”

(Romans 5:5) “5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”

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For human beings it is always hard to understand this, but it's the Truth, the world ensnares us so much that we forget that there is an alternative life, we lose the perception of reality in which we live and we become slaves of recognitions, of fashion, passions, of what people say, commitments, certain ways of living and thinking.

Whoever believes God and in God, but seeks to ensure salvation without missing the pleasures and delights of the world is weak before the flesh, while not accepting the truth with a sincere heart, he ends up unseparated from the world. Until the heart is purged of corruption, the ear is deaf to the divine instruction.

(Luke 8:11-15) The Parable of the Sower Explained
“11 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. 13 But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. 14 Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. 15 But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.”

All visible attractions of the world tend to divert our attention and alienate our affections from God. Visible things divert the heart from things unseen, and are only temporary.

What is highly esteemed among men, what is pleasant to the eyes and ears, is an abomination in the sight of God.

(Luke 16:15) “15 And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God.”

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By appreciating the world or following its rules, customs and traditions men forget our God, the Creator.

(Colossians 3:5) “5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”

The world is an enemy to be resisted and that must be overcome.

(1 John 5:4) “4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.”

“this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith”

Only a God-given faith can overcome the world. When a heart is occupied with the unseen and eternal realities, it is delivered from the corrupting influence of the world.

Why is it so necessary to overcome the world?

The world is attractive to each of the instincts of a fallen man. It contains thousands of sensations he loves, which attract his attention, create desire in his heart. But, despite being attractive, these occupations and pleasures of the world, are designed and adapted to promote a false "happiness" and well-being in this life only.

(Matthew 16:26; Mark 8:36) “26 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”

(Psalm 17:14) “14 With Your hand from men, O Lord, From men of the world who have their portion in this life, And whose belly You fill with Your hidden treasure. They are satisfied with children, And leave the rest of their possession for their babes.”

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How attractive can be the brightness of a visible but temporary world for those who delight in the Lord and look for the invisible and eternal things?

(2 Esdras 16:40-52) “40 Hear my words, O my people; prepare for battle, and in the midst of the calamities be like strangers on the earth. 41 Let the one who sells be like one who will flee; let the one who buys be like one who will lose; 42 let the one who does business be like one who will not make a profit; and let the one who builds a house be like one who will not live in it; 43 let the one who sows be like one who will not reap; so also the one who prunes the vines, like one who will not gather the grapes; 44 those who marry, like those who will have no children; and those who do not marry, like those who are widowed. 45 Because of this, those who labor, labor in vain; 46 for strangers shall gather their fruits, and plunder their goods, overthrow their houses, and take their children captive; for in captivity and famine they will produce their children. 47 Those who conduct business, do so only to have it plundered; the more they adorn their cities, their houses and possessions, and their persons, 48 the more angry I will be with them for their sins, says the Lord. 49 Just as a respectable and virtuous woman abhors a prostitute, 50 so righteousness shall abhor iniquity, when she decks herself out, and shall accuse her to her face when he comes who will defend the one who searches out every sin on earth. 51 Therefore do not be like her or her works. 52 For in a very short time iniquity will be removed from the earth, and righteousness will reign over us.”

(Ezekiel 7:11-14) “11 Violence has risen up into a rod of wickedness; None of them shall remain, None of their multitude, None of them; Nor shall there be wailing for them.
12 The time has come, The day draws near. ‘Let not the buyer rejoice, Nor the seller mourn, For wrath is on their whole multitude.
13 For the seller shall not return to what has been sold, Though he may still be alive; For the vision concerns the whole multitude, And it shall not turn back; No one will strengthen himself Who lives in iniquity.
14 ‘They have blown the trumpet and made everyone ready, But no one goes to battle; For My wrath is on all their multitude.”

(1 Corinthians 7:29-31) “29 But this I say, brethren, the time is short, so that from now on even those who have wives should be as though they had none, 30 those who weep as though they did not weep, those who rejoice as though they did not rejoice, those who buy as though they did not possess, 31 and those who use this world as not misusing it. For the form of this world is passing away.”

(2 Corinthians 4:7, 18) “7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.
18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

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Many remain without knowing the truth, others want to keep one foot looking for a relationship with God and with the other foot in the world appreciating vanities offered by the enemy. Many are victims of a fraud constituted by the desire of the visible and material, the ephemeral and the temporary things.

(Wisdom 4:12) “12 For the fascination of wickedness obscures what is good, and roving desire perverts the innocent mind.”

(Hebrews 3:13) “13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”

Moses, a chosen of God, refused to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin.

(Hebrews 11:24-26) “24 By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25 choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26 esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.”

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Past events, punishment for the transgressions, act as examples for us, and they were written for our admonition.

(1 Corinthians 10:6-12) “6 Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. 7 And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.” 8 Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; 9 nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents; 10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.
12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.”

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“If you abide in My word, …you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free – free from vanities and pleasures of this world.

(John 8:31-32) “31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.””

(John 8:36) “36 Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”

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4. Spells of the world.

BABYLON THE GREAT – Who is she?

“BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.”

(Revelation 17:1-6, 15) The Scarlet Woman and the Scarlet Beast
“17 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and talked with me, saying to me, “Come, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters, 2 with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication.”
3 So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. 4 The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication. 5 And on her forehead a name was written: MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
6 I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. And when I saw her, I marveled with great amazement.
15 Then he said to me, “The waters which you saw, where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues.”

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“MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH” means, mother of all religions and beliefs, mother of all the filth and abominations of the earth, of all things opposed to God.

"…the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her fornication"

(Ezra 9:10-11) “10 And now, O our God, what shall we say after this? For we have forsaken Your commandments, 11 which You commanded by Your servants the prophets, saying, ‘The land which you are entering to possess is an unclean land, with the uncleanness of the peoples of the lands, with their abominations which have filled it from one end to another with their impurity.”

(Ezekiel 33:28-29) “28 For I will make the land most desolate, her arrogant strength shall cease, and the mountains of Israel shall be so desolate that no one will pass through. 29 Then they shall know that I am the Lord, when I have made the land most desolate because of all their abominations which they have committed.”’”

(Revelation 19:2) “2 For true and righteous are His judgments, because He has judged the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her fornication; and He has avenged on her the blood of His servants shed by her.””

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“They have provoked Me to jealousy by what is not God; They have moved Me to anger by their foolish idols.”

(Deuteronomy 32:16-21) “16 They provoked Him to jealousy with foreign gods; With abominations they provoked Him to anger.
17 They sacrificed to demons, not to God, To gods they did not know, To new gods, new arrivals That your fathers did not fear.
18 Of the Rock who begot you, you are unmindful, And have forgotten the God who fathered you.
19 “And when the Lord saw it, He spurned them, Because of the provocation of His sons and His daughters.
20 And He said: ‘I will hide My face from them, I will see what their end will be, For they are a perverse generation, Children in whom is no faith.
21 They have provoked Me to jealousy by what is not God; They have moved Me to anger by their foolish idols. But I will provoke them to jealousy by those who are not a nation; I will move them to anger by a foolish nation.”

(1 Corinthians 10:20) “20 Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons.”

(Proverbs 15:8) “8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, But the prayer of the upright is His delight.”

(Proverbs 21:27) “27 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination; How much more when he brings it with wicked intent!”

(Ezekiel 22:3) “3 Then say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “The city sheds blood in her own midst, that her time may come; and she makes idols within herself to defile herself.”

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This world with an infinite variety of religions and beliefs is declared "enemy of God."
All men who seek God through religion or church are led by the spirit of the world, guided by the commandments of men, not by the Holy Spirit of God. Not to mention the Politics and Science, which have always been the favorite tools to keep man away from God.

All religious ideology is false because all religion is called harlot in the Word of God.

“foolish woman”, “immoral woman” – are the names of the daughters of the harlot Babylon, which lead man through a way of lie, the way of death.

Snares of a harlot.

“an adulteress will prey upon his precious life.”

(Proverbs 5:3-5) “3 For the lips of an immoral woman drip honey, And her mouth is smoother than oil;
4 But in the end she is bitter as wormwood, Sharp as a two-edged sword.
5 Her feet go down to death, Her steps lay hold of hell.”

(Proverbs 6:24-26) “24 To keep you from the evil woman, From the flattering tongue of a seductress.
25 Do not lust after her beauty in your heart, Nor let her allure you with her eyelids.
26 For by means of a harlot A man is reduced to a crust of bread; And an adulteress will prey upon his precious life.”

(Proverbs 9:13-18) “13 A foolish woman is clamorous; She is simple, and knows nothing.
14 For she sits at the door of her house, On a seat by the highest places of the city,
15 To call to those who pass by, Who go straight on their way:
16 “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here”; And as for him who lacks understanding, she says to him,
17 “Stolen water is sweet, And bread eaten in secret is pleasant.”
18 But he does not know that the dead are there, That her guests are in the depths of hell.”

(Proverbs 7:6-25) The Crafty Harlot
“6 For at the window of my house I looked through my lattice,
7 And saw among the simple, I perceived among the youths, A young man devoid of understanding,
8 Passing along the street near her corner; And he took the path to her house
9 In the twilight, in the evening, In the black and dark night.
10 And there a woman met him, With the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart.
11 She was loud and rebellious, Her feet would not stay at home.
12 At times she was outside, at times in the open square, Lurking at every corner.
13 So she caught him and kissed him; With an impudent face she said to him:
14 “I have peace offerings with me; Today I have paid my vows.
15 So I came out to meet you, Diligently to seek your face, And I have found you.
16 I have spread my bed with tapestry, Colored coverings of Egyptian linen.
17 I have perfumed my bed With myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon.
18 Come, let us take our fill of love until morning; Let us delight ourselves with love.
19 For my husband is not at home; He has gone on a long journey;
20 He has taken a bag of money with him, And will come home on the appointed day.”
21 With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, With her flattering lips she seduced him.
22 Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, Or as a fool to the correction of the stocks,
23 Till an arrow struck his liver. As a bird hastens to the snare, He did not know it would cost his life.
24 Now therefore, listen to me, my children; Pay attention to the words of my mouth:
25 Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, Do not stray into her paths;”

(Proverbs 23:26-28) “26 My son, give me your heart, And let your eyes observe my ways.
27 For a harlot is a deep pit, And a seductress is a narrow well.
28 She also lies in wait as for a victim, And increases the unfaithful among men.”

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He who pleases God shall escape from the snares of a harlot.

(Proverbs 7:1-5) “7 My son, keep my words, And treasure my commands within you.
2 Keep my commands and live, And my law as the apple of your eye.
3 Bind them on your fingers; Write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,” And call understanding your nearest kin,
5 That they may keep you from the immoral woman, From the seductress who flatters with her words.”

(Proverbs 2:16-22) “16 To deliver you from the immoral woman, From the seductress who flatters with her words,
17 Who forsakes the companion of her youth, And forgets the covenant of her God.
18 For her house leads down to death, And her paths to the dead;
19 None who go to her return, Nor do they regain the paths of life—
20 So you may walk in the way of goodness, And keep to the paths of righteousness.
21 For the upright will dwell in the land, And the blameless will remain in it;
22 But the wicked will be cut off from the earth, And the unfaithful will be uprooted from it.”

(Ecclesiastes 7:26) “26 And I find more bitter than death The woman whose heart is snares and nets, Whose hands are fetters. He who pleases God shall escape from her, But the sinner shall be trapped by her.”

(Proverbs 22:14-15) “14 The mouth of an immoral woman is a deep pit; He who is abhorred by the Lord will fall there.
15 Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; The rod of correction will drive it far from him.”

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5. The law and wisdom of God are better Than thousands of coins of gold and silver.

(1 Timothy 6:10-12) “10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
11 But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

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(Psalm 119:72) “72 The law of Your mouth is better to me Than thousands of coins of gold and silver.”

(Psalm 119:127-128) “127 Therefore I love Your commandments More than gold, yes, than fine gold!
128 Therefore all Your precepts concerning all things I consider to be right; I hate every false way.”

(Proverbs 3:13-15) “13 Happy is the man who finds wisdom, And the man who gains understanding;
14 For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, And her gain than fine gold.
15 She is more precious than rubies, And all the things you may desire cannot compare with her.”

(Proverbs 8:10-11; 18-21) “10 Receive my instruction, and not silver, And knowledge rather than choice gold;
11 For wisdom is better than rubies, And all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her.
18 Riches and honor are with me, Enduring riches and righteousness.
19 My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold, And my revenue than choice silver.
20 I traverse the way of righteousness, In the midst of the paths of justice,
21 That I may cause those who love me to inherit wealth, That I may fill their treasuries.”

(Proverbs 16:16) “16 How much better to get wisdom than gold! And to get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.”

(Job 11:6) “6 That He would show you the secrets of wisdom! For they would double your prudence. Know therefore that God exacts from you Less than your iniquity deserves.”

(Job 28:18) “18 No mention shall be made of coral or quartz, For the price of wisdom is above rubies.”

(Ecclesiastes 7:12) “12 For wisdom is a defense as money is a defense, But the excellence of knowledge is that wisdom gives life to those who have it.”

The wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.

1. The riches of the Egyptians for the members of the old people.

2. The riches of the nations of the world for the members of the old people.

3. The wealth of the sinner is stored up for the chosen of God.

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1. The riches of the Egyptians for the members of the old people.

The riches of the Egyptians for the old people.

(Genesis 15:13-14) “13 Then He said to Abram: “Know certainly that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, and will serve them, and they will afflict them four hundred years. 14 And also the nation whom they serve I will judge; afterward they shall come out with great possessions.”

(Exodus 12:40-41) “40 Now the sojourn of the children of Israel who lived in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years. 41 And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years—on that very same day—it came to pass that all the armies of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.”

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(Exodus 3:19-22) “19 But I am sure that the king of Egypt will not let you go, no, not even by a mighty hand. 20 So I will stretch out My hand and strike Egypt with all My wonders which I will do in its midst; and after that he will let you go. 21 And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and it shall be, when you go, that you shall not go empty-handed. 22 But every woman shall ask of her neighbor, namely, of her who dwells near her house, articles of silver, articles of gold, and clothing; and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters. So you shall plunder the Egyptians.””

(Exodus 12:35-36) “35 Now the children of Israel had done according to the word of Moses, and they had asked from the Egyptians articles of silver, articles of gold, and clothing. 36 And the Lord had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they granted them what they requested.Thus they plundered the Egyptians.”

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2. The riches of the nations of the world for the members of the old people.

God gave seven nations, their lands and their goods, in the hands of the old people.

“I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Amorites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, to a land flowing with milk and honey.”

(Exodus 3:7-9, 16-17) “7 And the Lord said: “I have surely seen the oppression of My people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters, for I know their sorrows. 8 So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Amorites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites. 9 Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel has come to Me, and I have also seen the oppression with which the Egyptians oppress them.
16 Go and gather the elders of Israel together, and say to them, ‘The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared to me, saying, “I have surely visited you and seen what is done to you in Egypt; 17 and I have said I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Amorites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, to a land flowing with milk and honey.”’”

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Destruction of seven nations.

"the Lord your God is He who goes over before you as a consuming fire. He will destroy them and bring them down before you"

"it is because of the wickedness of these nations that the Lord is driving them out from before you."

(Deuteronomy 9:1-5) Israel’s Rebellions Reviewed
“9 “Hear, O Israel: You are to cross over the Jordan today, and go in to dispossess nations greater and mightier than yourself, cities great and fortified up to heaven, 2 a people great and tall, the descendants of the Anakim, whom you know, and of whom you heard it said, ‘Who can stand before the descendants of Anak?’ 3 Therefore understand today that the Lord your God is He who goes over before you as a consuming fire. He will destroy them and bring them down before you; so you shall drive them out and destroy them quickly, as the Lord has said to you.
4 “Do not think in your heart, after the Lord your God has cast them out before you, saying, ‘Because of my righteousness the Lord has brought me in to possess this land’; but it is because of the wickedness of these nations that the Lord is driving them out from before you. 5 It is not because of your righteousness or the uprightness of your heart that you go in to possess their land, but because of the wickedness of these nations that the Lord your God drives them out from before you, and that He may fulfill the word which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.”

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God destroyed seven nations in the land of Canaan and distributed their land to Israel by allotment.

(Acts 13:18-19) “18 Now for a time of about forty years He put up with their ways in the wilderness. 19 And when He had destroyed seven nations in the land of Canaan, He distributed their land to them by allotment.”

(Exodus 23:20-24) The Angel and the Promises
“20 “Behold, I send an Angel before you to keep you in the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared. 21 Beware of Him and obey His voice; do not provoke Him, for He will not pardon your transgressions; for My name is in Him. 22 But if you indeed obey His voice and do all that I speak, then I will be an enemy to your enemies and an adversary to your adversaries. 23 For My Angel will go before you and bring you in to the Amorites and the Hittites and the Perizzites and the Canaanites and the Hivites and the Jebusites; and I will cut them off. 24 You shall not bow down to their gods, nor serve them, nor do according to their works; but you shall utterly overthrow them and completely break down their sacred pillars.”

(Exodus 33:1-3) The Command to Leave Sinai
“33 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Depart and go up from here, you and the people whom you have brought out of the land of Egypt, to the land of which I swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, ‘To your descendants I will give it.’ 2 And I will send My Angel before you, and I will drive out the Canaanite and the Amorite and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite. 3 Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey; for I will not go up in your midst, lest I consume you on the way, for you are a stiff-necked people.””

(Exodus 34:11-14) “11 Observe what I command you this day. Behold, I am driving out from before you the Amorite and the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite. 12 Take heed to yourself, lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land where you are going, lest it be a snare in your midst. 13 But you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and cut down their wooden images14 (for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God),”

(Deuteronomy 7:1-3) “7 “When the Lord your God brings you into the land which you go to possess, and has cast out many nations before you, the Hittites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than you, 2 and when the Lord your God delivers them over to you, you shall conquer them and utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them nor show mercy to them. 3 Nor shall you make marriages with them. You shall not give your daughter to their son, nor take their daughter for your son.”

(Deuteronomy 20:16-18) “16 “But of the cities of these peoples which the Lord your God gives you as an inheritance, you shall let nothing that breathes remain alive, 17 but you shall utterly destroy them: the Hittite and the Amorite and the Canaanite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite, just as the Lord your God has commanded you, 18 lest they teach you to do according to all their abominations which they have done for their gods, and you sin against the Lord your God.”

(Joshua 3:9-10) “9 So Joshua said to the children of Israel, “Come here, and hear the words of the Lord your God.” 10 And Joshua said, “By this you shall know that the living God is among you, and that He will without fail drive out from before you the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Hivites and the Perizzites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Jebusites:”

(Joshua 11:1-8) The Northern Conquest
“11 And it came to pass, when Jabin king of Hazor heard these things,that he sent to Jobab king of Madon, to the king of Shimron, to the king of Achshaph, 2 and to the kings who were from the north, in the mountains, in the plain south of Chinneroth, in the lowland, and in the heights of Dor on the west, 3 to the Canaanites in the east and in the west, the Amorite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Jebusite in the mountains, and the Hivite below Hermon in the land of Mizpah. 4 So they went out, they and all their armies with them, as many people as the sand that is on the seashore in multitude, with very many horses and chariots. 5 And when all these kings had met together, they came and camped together at the waters of Merom to fight against Israel.
6 But the Lord said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid because of them, for tomorrow about this time I will deliver all of them slain before Israel. You shall hamstring their horses and burn their chariots with fire.” 7 So Joshua and all the people of war with him came against them suddenly by the waters of Merom, and they attacked them. 8 And the Lord delivered them into the hand of Israel, who defeated them and chased them to Greater Sidon, to the Brook Misrephoth, and to the Valley of Mizpah eastward; they attacked them until they left none of them remaining.”

(Joshua 12:7-8) The Kings Conquered by Joshua
“7 And these are the kings of the country which Joshua and the children of Israel conquered on this side of the Jordan, on the west, from Baal Gad in the Valley of Lebanon as far as Mount Halak and the ascent to Seir, which Joshua gave to the tribes of Israel as a possession according to their divisions, 8 in the mountain country, in the lowlands, in the Jordan plain, in the slopes, in the wilderness, and in the South—the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites:”

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The riches of the nations of the promised land for the old people.

“I have given you a land for which you did not labor, and cities which you did not build, and you dwell in them; you eat of the vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant.”

(Deuteronomy 6:10-12) Caution Against Disobedience
“10 “So it shall be, when the Lord your God brings you into the land of which He swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give you large and beautiful cities which you did not build, 11 houses full of all good things, which you did not fill, hewn-out wells which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant—when you have eaten and are full— 12 then beware, lest you forget the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.”

(Joshua 24:11-14) “11 Then you went over the Jordan and came to Jericho. And the men of Jericho fought against you—also the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. But I delivered them into your hand. 12 I sent the hornet before you which drove them out from before you, also the two kings of the Amorites, but not with your sword or with your bow. 13 I have given you a land for which you did not labor, and cities which you did not build, and you dwell in them; you eat of the vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant.’
14 “Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord!”

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3. The wealth of the sinner is stored up for the chosen of God.

The wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.

(Ecclesiastes 2:26) “26 For God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy to a man who is good in His sight; but to the sinner He gives the work of gathering and collecting, that he may give to him who is good before God. This also is vanity and grasping for the wind.”

(Proverbs 13:22) “22 A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, But the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.”

(Proverbs 28:8) “8 One who increases his possessions by usury and extortion Gathers it for him who will pity the poor.”

(Psalm 111:6) “6 He has declared to His people the power of His works, In giving them the heritage of the nations.”

(Job 27:16-19) “16 Though he heaps up silver like dust, And piles up clothing like clay—
17 He may pile it up, but the just will wear it, And the innocent will divide the silver.
18 He builds his house like a moth, Like a booth which a watchman makes.
19 The rich man will lie down, But not be gathered up; He opens his eyes, And he is no more.”

(Isaiah 61:6-7) “6 But you shall be named the priests of the Lord, They shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, And in their glory you shall boast.
7 Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, And instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; Everlasting joy shall be theirs.”

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What was said by the Lord Jesus Christ.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”

(Mark 10:29-31) “29 So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, 30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.””

(Matthew 6:25, 30-33) Do Not Worry
“25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”

(Luke 12:29-31) “29 “And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind. 30 For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. 31 But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you.”

The danger of riches.

Prosperity of the wicked.

“So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”

(Luke 12:16-21) “16 Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. 17 And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ 18 So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’
21 “So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.””

(The Gospel of Thomas) (63) “Jesus said: There was a rich man who had many possessions. He said: I will use my possessions that I may sow and reap and plant, and fill my barns with fruit, that I may have need of nothing. These were his thoughts in his heart. And in that night he died. He that hath ears, let him hear.”

(Ecclesiastes 5:13) “13 There is a severe evil which I have seen under the sun: Riches kept for their owner to his hurt.”

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"And the complacency of fools will destroy them"

(Psalm 73:3-9, 11-12) “3 For I was envious of the boastful, When I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4 For there are no pangs in their death, But their strength is firm.
5 They are not in trouble as other men, Nor are they plagued like other men.
6 Therefore pride serves as their necklace; Violence covers them like a garment.
7 Their eyes bulge with abundance; They have more than heart could wish.
8 They scoff and speak wickedly concerning oppression; They speak loftily.
9 They set their mouth against the heavens, And their tongue walks through the earth.
11 And they say, “How does God know? And is there knowledge in the Most High?”
12 Behold, these are the ungodly, Who are always at ease; They increase in riches.”

(Proverbs 28:20) “20 A faithful man will abound with blessings, But he who hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.”

(Proverbs 20:21) “21 An inheritance gained hastily at the beginning Will not be blessed at the end.”

(Proverbs 1:7, 18-19) “7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction.
18 But they lie in wait for their own blood, They lurk secretly for their own lives.
19 So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain; It takes away the life of its owners.”

(Proverbs 1:32) “32 For the turning away of the simple will slay them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them;”

(Ecclesiastes 5:13) “13 There is a severe evil which I have seen under the sun: Riches kept for their owner to his hurt.”

(Proverbs 21:6) “6 Getting treasures by a lying tongue Is the fleeting fantasy of those who seek death.”

(Amos 6:7-9) “7 Therefore they shall now go captive as the first of the captives, And those who recline at banquets shall be removed.
8 The Lord God has sworn by Himself, The Lord God of hosts says: “I abhor the pride of Jacob, And hate his palaces; Therefore I will deliver up the city And all that is in it.”
9 Then it shall come to pass, that if ten men remain in one house, they shall die.”

(Acts 8:20) “20 But Peter said to him, “Your money perish with you, because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money!”

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"One who loves gold will not be justified", "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil”

(1 Timothy 6:9-10) “9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

"Many have come to ruin because of gold, and their destruction has met them face to face."

(Ben Sira 31:1-11) “1 Wakefulness over wealth wastes away one's flesh, and anxiety about it drives away sleep. 2Wakeful anxiety prevents slumber, and a severe illness carries off sleep. 3 The rich person toils to amass a fortune, and when he rests he fills himself with his dainties. 4 The poor person toils to make a meager living, and if ever he rests he becomes needy. 5 One who loves gold will not be justified; one who pursues money will be led astray by it. 6 Many have come to ruin because of gold, and their destruction has met them face to face. 7 It is a stumbling block to those who are avid for it, and every fool will be taken captive by it. 8 Blessed is the rich person who is found blameless, and who does not go after gold. 9 Who is he, that we may praise him? For he has done wonders among his people. 10 Who has been tested by it and been found perfect? Let it be for him a ground for boasting. Who has had the power to transgress and did not transgress, and to do evil and did not do it? 11 His prosperity will be established, and the assembly will proclaim his acts of charity.”

(Ecclesiastes 5:10) “10 He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; Nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity.”

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"…Surely they busy themselves in vain; He heaps up riches, And does not know who will gather them.”"

(Psalm 39:4-6) “4 “Lord, make me to know my end, And what is the measure of my days, That I may know how frail I am.
5 Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths, And my age is as nothing before You; Certainly every man at his best state is but vapor. Selah
6 Surely every man walks about like a shadow; Surely they busy themselves in vain; He heaps up riches, And does not know who will gather them.”

(Psalm 49:10) “10 For he sees wise men die; Likewise the fool and the senseless person perish, And leave their wealth to others.”

(Jeremiah 17:11) “11 “As a partridge that broods but does not hatch, So is he who gets riches, but not by right; It will leave him in the midst of his days, And at his end he will be a fool.””

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The folly of trusting in riches.

"He who trusts in his riches will fall"

(Proverbs 11:28) “28 He who trusts in his riches will fall, But the righteous will flourish like foliage.”

(Psalm 49:1-14, 16-20) The Confidence of the Foolish
“1 Hear this, all peoples; Give ear, all inhabitants of the world,
2 Both low and high, Rich and poor together.
3 My mouth shall speak wisdom, And the meditation of my heart shall give understanding.
4 I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will disclose my dark saying on the harp.
5 Why should I fear in the days of evil, When the iniquity at my heels surrounds me?
6 Those who trust in their wealth And boast in the multitude of their riches,
7 None of them can by any means redeem his brother, Nor give to God a ransom for him—
8 For the redemption of their souls is costly, And it shall cease forever—
9 That he should continue to live eternally, And not see the Pit.
10 For he sees wise men die; Likewise the fool and the senseless person perish, And leave their wealth to others.
11 Their inner thought is that their houses will last forever, Their dwelling places to all generations; They call their lands after their own names.
12 Nevertheless man, though in honor, does not remain; He is like the beasts that perish.
13 This is the way of those who are foolish, And of their posterity who approve their sayings. Selah
14 Like sheep they are laid in the grave; Death shall feed on them; The upright shall have dominion over them in the morning; And their beauty shall be consumed in the grave, far from their dwelling.
16 Do not be afraid when one becomes rich, When the glory of his house is increased;
17 For when he dies he shall carry nothing away; His glory shall not descend after him.
18 Though while he lives he blesses himself (For men will praise you when you do well for yourself),
19 He shall go to the generation of his fathers; They shall never see light.
20 A man who is in honor, yet does not understand, Is like the beasts that perish.”

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How hard it is for those who have riches and trust in them, to enter the kingdom of God.

(Matthew 19:23-26) With God All Things Are Possible
“23 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24 And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”
25 When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?”
26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.””

(Mark 10:23-25) “23 Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!” 24 And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.””

(Luke 18:24-25) “24 And when Jesus saw that he became very sorrowful, He said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! 25 For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.””

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(Psalm 73:17) “17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; Then I understood their end.”

The final destination of the greedy and covetous.

(Proverbs 28:22) “22 A man with an evil eye hastens after riches, And does not consider that poverty will come upon him.”

(James 5:1) “1 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are coming upon you!”

(Revelation 3:15-17) “15 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. 16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—”

(Luke 6:24-26) Jesus Pronounces Woes
“24 “But woe to you who are rich, For you have received your consolation.
25 Woe to you who are full, For you shall hunger. Woe to you who laugh now, For you shall mourn and weep.
26 Woe to you when all men speak well of you, For so did their fathers to the false prophets.”

(Luke 16:25) “25 But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented.”

(Job 27:16-19) “16 Though he heaps up silver like dust, And piles up clothing like clay—
17 He may pile it up, but the just will wear it, And the innocent will divide the silver.
18 He builds his house like a moth, Like a booth which a watchman makes.
19 The rich man will lie down, But not be gathered up; He opens his eyes, And he is no more.”

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The end of those who trust in their own strength.

(Wisdom 5:7-14) “7 We took our fill of the paths of lawlessness and destruction, and we journeyed through trackless deserts, but the way of the Lord we have not known. 8 What has our arrogance profited us? And what good has our boasted wealth brought us? 9 "All those things have vanished like a shadow, and like a rumor that passes by; 10 like a ship that sails through the billowy water, and when it has passed no trace can be found, no track of its keel in the waves; 11 or as, when a bird flies through the air, no evidence of its passage is found; the light air, lashed by the beat of its pinions and pierced by the force of its rushing flight, is traversed by the movement of its wings, and afterward no sign of its coming is found there; 12 or as, when an arrow is shot at a target, the air, thus divided, comes together at once, so that no one knows its pathway. 13 So we also, as soon as we were born, ceased to be, and we had no sign of virtue to show, but were consumed in our wickedness." 14 Because the hope of the ungodly is like thistledown carried by the wind, and like a light frost driven away by a storm; it is dispersed like smoke before the wind, and it passes like the remembrance of a guest who stays but a day.”

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"Riches are not forever"

(Proverbs 27:24) “24 For riches are not forever, Nor does a crown endure to all generations.”

(Ben Sira 40:13) “13 The wealth of the unjust will dry up like a river, and crash like a loud clap of thunder in a storm.”

(James 1:9-11) The Perspective of Rich and Poor
“9 Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation, 10 but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away. 11 For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits.”

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“he who hates covetousness will prolong his days” (for all eternity), but, “When the wicked spring up like grass, And when all the workers of iniquity flourish, It is that they may be destroyed forever.”; because, “men of the world who have their portion in this life”

(Proverbs 28:16) “16 A ruler who lacks understanding is a great oppressor, But he who hates covetousness will prolong his days.”

(Psalm 17:13-14) “13 Arise, O Lord, Confront him, cast him down; Deliver my life from the wicked with Your sword,
14 With Your hand from men, O Lord, From men of the world who have their portion in this life, And whose belly You fill with Your hidden treasure. They are satisfied with children, And leave the rest of their possession for their babes.”

(Psalm 92:7-9) “7 When the wicked spring up like grass, And when all the workers of iniquity flourish, It is that they may be destroyed forever.
8 But You, Lord, are on high forevermore.
9 For behold, Your enemies, O Lord, For behold, Your enemies shall perish; All the workers of iniquity shall be scattered.”

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“he who regards the clouds will not reap.”
For anyone who seeks fame and power.

(Ecclesiastes 11:4) “4 He who observes the wind will not sow, And he who regards the clouds will not reap.”

(Ecclesiastes 10:6) “6 Folly is set in great dignity, While the rich sit in a lowly place.”

(Revelation 2:9) “9 “I know your works, tribulation, and poverty (but you are rich); and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.”

(Proverbs 13:7) “7 There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing; And one who makes himself poor, yet has great riches.”

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"what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?"

(Matthew 16:26; Mark 8:36-37) “26 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”

(Luke 9:25) “25 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?”

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Covetousness and envy. The false security of the rich and the sinner.

(Job 5:2) “2 For wrath kills a foolish man, And envy slays a simple one.”

(Ecclesiastes 5:12) “12 The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, Whether he eats little or much; But the abundance of the rich will not permit him to sleep.”

(Ben Sira 14:3-10) “3 Riches are inappropriate for a small-minded person; and of what use is wealth to a miser? 4What he denies himself he collects for others; and others will live in luxury on his goods. 5 If one is mean to himself, to whom will he be generous? He will not enjoy his own riches. 6 No one is worse than one who is grudging to himself; this is the punishment for his meanness. 7 If ever he does good, it is by mistake; and in the end he reveals his meanness. 8 The miser is an evil person; he turns away and disregards people. 9 The eye of the greedy person is not satisfied with his share; greedy injustice withers the soul. 10 A miser begrudges bread, and it is lacking at his table.”

(Ben Sira 5:1-8) “1 Do not rely on your wealth, or say, "I have enough." 2 Do not follow your inclination and strength in pursuing the desires of your heart. 3 Do not say, "Who can have power over me?" for the Lord will surely punish you. 4 Do not say, "I sinned, yet what has happened to me?" for the Lord is slow to anger. 5 Do not be so confident of forgiveness that you add sin to sin. 6 Do not say, "His mercy is great, he will forgive the multitude of my sins," for both mercy and wrath are with him, and his anger will rest on sinners. 7 Do not delay to turn back to the Lord, and do not postpone it from day to day; for suddenly the wrath of the Lord will come upon you, and at the time of punishment you will perish. 8 Do not depend on dishonest wealth, for it will not benefit you on the day of calamity.”

(Jeremiah 9:23) “23 Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;”

(Ben Sira 10:31) “31 One who is honored in poverty, how much more in wealth! And one dishonored in wealth, how much more in poverty!”

(Ezekiel 33:31) “31 So they come to you as people do, they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them; for with their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain.”

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Riches in the day of wrath of God.

(Proverbs 11:4) “4 Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, But righteousness delivers from death.”

(Psalm 49:6-8) “6 Those who trust in their wealth And boast in the multitude of their riches,
7 None of them can by any means redeem his brother, Nor give to God a ransom for him—
8 For the redemption of their souls is costly, And it shall cease forever—”

(Zephaniah 1:18) “18 Neither their silver nor their gold Shall be able to deliver them In the day of the Lord’s wrath; But the whole land shall be devoured By the fire of His jealousy, For He will make speedy riddance Of all those who dwell in the land.”

(Ezekiel 7:19) “19 ‘They will throw their silver into the streets, And their gold will be like refuse; Their silver and their gold will not be able to deliver them In the day of the wrath of the Lord; They will not satisfy their souls, Nor fill their stomachs, Because it became their stumbling block of iniquity.”

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“Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god;” (money, material wealth and riches)

(Psalm 16:1-5) The Hope of the Faithful, and the Messiah’s Victory
“1 Preserve me, O God, for in You I put my trust.
2 O my soul, you have said to the Lord, “You are my Lord, My goodness is nothing apart from You.”
3 As for the saints who are on the earth, “They are the excellent ones, in whom is all my delight.”
4 Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god; Their drink offerings of blood I will not offer, Nor take up their names on my lips.
5 O Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You maintain my lot.”

(Galatians 6:8) “8 For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.”

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But the righteous will see the fall of the wicked and those who trust in the abundance of their riches.

(Psalm 52:6-7) “6 The righteous also shall see and fear, And shall laugh at him, saying,
7 “Here is the man who did not make God his strength, But trusted in the abundance of his riches, And strengthened himself in his wickedness.””

(Proverbs 29:16) “16 When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increases; But the righteous will see their fall.”

(Ecclesiastes 6:1-3) “1 There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, and it is common among men: 2 A man to whom God has given riches and wealth and honor, so that he lacks nothing for himself of all he desires; yet God does not give him power to eat of it, but a foreigner consumes it. This is vanity, and it is an evil affliction.
3 If a man begets a hundred children and lives many years, so that the days of his years are many, but his soul is not satisfied with goodness, or indeed he has no burial, I say that a stillborn child is better than he—”

Prosperity and wealth of the wicked oppressors of the poor.

1. Moderation in ambitions.

2. The rich oppressors.

3. The Lord God rules over all the kingdoms of the nations.
Authority and power of a ruler.

4. The duty of the nations.

5. “A roaring lion and a charging bear Is a wicked ruler over poor people.”

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1. Moderation in ambitions.

(Ben Sira 11:10-13) “10 My child, do not busy yourself with many matters; if you multiply activities, you will not be held blameless. If you pursue, you will not overtake, and by fleeing you will not escape. 11 There are those who work and struggle and hurry, but are so much the more in want. 12 There are others who are slow and need help, who lack strength and abound in poverty; but the eyes of the Lord look kindly upon them; he lifts them out of their lowly condition 13 and raises up their heads to the amazement of the many.”

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2. The rich oppressors.

(Deuteronomy 24:14-15) “14 “You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether one of your brethren or one of the aliens who is in your land within your gates. 15 Each day you shall give him his wages, and not let the sun go down on it, for he is poor and has set his heart on it; lest he cry out against you to the Lord, and it be sin to you.”

"Hear this, you who swallow up the needy, And make the poor of the land fail,"

(Ecclesiastes 8:9) “9 All this I have seen, and applied my heart to every work that is done under the sun: There is a time in which one man rules over another to his own hurt.”

(Amos 8:4-6) “4 Hear this, you who swallow up the needy, And make the poor of the land fail,
5 Saying: “When will the New Moon be past, That we may sell grain? And the Sabbath, That we may trade wheat? Making the ephah small and the shekel large, Falsifying the scales by deceit,
6 That we may buy the poor for silver, And the needy for a pair of sandals— Even sell the bad wheat?””

(Micah 2:1-3) Woe to Evildoers
“2 Woe to those who devise iniquity, And work out evil on their beds! At morning light they practice it, Because it is in the power of their hand.
2 They covet fields and take them by violence, Also houses, and seize them. So they oppress a man and his house, A man and his inheritance.
3 Therefore thus says the Lord: “Behold, against this family I am devising disaster, From which you cannot remove your necks; Nor shall you walk haughtily, For this is an evil time.”

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(James 2:5-7) “5 Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him? 6 But you have dishonored the poor man. Do not the rich oppress you and drag you into the courts? 7 Do they not blaspheme that noble name by which you are called?”

(James 5:1-6) Rich Oppressors Will Be Judged
“5 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are coming upon you! 2 Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten. 3 Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasure in the last days. 4 Indeed the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. 5 You have lived on the earth in pleasure and luxury; you have fattened your hearts as in a day of slaughter. 6 You have condemned, you have murdered the just; he does not resist you.”

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(1 Timothy 6:17) Instructions to the Rich
“17 Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy.”

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3. The Lord God rules over all the kingdoms of the nations.
Authority and power of a ruler.

God gives power, might and authority to men.

"And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings;"

(Daniel 2:20-22) “20 Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, For wisdom and might are His.
21 And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise And knowledge to those who have understanding.
22 He reveals deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness, And light dwells with Him.”

(2 Chronicles 20:6) “6 and said: “O Lord God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven, and do You not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations, and in Your hand is there not power and might, so that no one is able to withstand You?”

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King Nebuchadnezzar.

“You, O king, are a king of kings. For the God of heaven has given you a kingdom, power, strength, and glory;”

"In order that the living may know That the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, Gives it to whomever He will,"

"till you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses."

(Daniel 2:1-49) Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream
“2 Now in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; and his spirit was so troubled that his sleep left him. 2 Then the king gave the command to call the magicians, the astrologers, the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans to tell the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king. 3 And the king said to them, “I have had a dream, and my spirit is anxious to know the dream.”
4 Then the Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic, “O king, live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will give the interpretation.”
5 The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, “My decision is firm: if you do not make known the dream to me, and its interpretation, you shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made an ash heap.6 However, if you tell the dream and its interpretation, you shall receive from me gifts, rewards, and great honor. Therefore tell me the dream and its interpretation.”
7 They answered again and said, “Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will give its interpretation.”
8 The king answered and said, “I know for certain that you would gain time, because you see that my decision is firm: 9 if you do not make known the dream to me, there is only one decree for you! For you have agreed to speak lying and corrupt words before me till the time has changed. Therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that you can give me its interpretation.”
10 The Chaldeans answered the king, and said, “There is not a man on earth who can tell the king’s matter; therefore no king, lord, or ruler hasever asked such things of any magician, astrologer, or Chaldean. 11 It isa difficult thing that the king requests, and there is no other who can tell it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.”
12 For this reason the king was angry and very furious, and gave the command to destroy all the wise men of Babylon. 13 So the decree went out, and they began killing the wise men; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them.
God Reveals Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream
14 Then with counsel and wisdom Daniel answered Arioch, the captain of the king’s guard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon;15 he answered and said to Arioch the king’s captain, “Why is the decree from the king so urgent?” Then Arioch made the decision known to Daniel.
16 So Daniel went in and asked the king to give him time, that he might tell the king the interpretation. 17 Then Daniel went to his house, and made the decision known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, 18 that they might seek mercies from the God of heaven concerning this secret, so that Daniel and his companions might not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. So Daniel blessed the God of heaven.
20 Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, For wisdom and might are His.
21 And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise And knowledge to those who have understanding.
22 He reveals deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness, And light dwells with Him.
23 “I thank You and praise You, O God of my fathers; You have given me wisdom and might, And have now made known to me what we asked of You, For You have made known to us the king’s demand.”
Daniel Explains the Dream
24 Therefore Daniel went to Arioch, whom the king had appointed to destroy the wise men of Babylon. He went and said thus to him: “Do not destroy the wise men of Babylon; take me before the king, and I will tell the king the interpretation.”
25 Then Arioch quickly brought Daniel before the king, and said thus to him, “I have found a man of the captives of Judah, who will make known to the king the interpretation.”
26 The king answered and said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, “Are you able to make known to me the dream which I have seen, and its interpretation?”
27 Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, “The secret which the king has demanded, the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, and the soothsayers cannot declare to the king. 28 But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. Your dream, and the visions of your head upon your bed, were these: 29 As for you, O king, thoughts came to your mind while on your bed, about what would come to pass after this; and He who reveals secrets has made known to you what will be. 30 But as for me, this secret has not been revealed to me because I have more wisdom than anyone living, but for oursakes who make known the interpretation to the king, and that you may know the thoughts of your heart.
31 “You, O king, were watching; and behold, a great image! This great image, whose splendor was excellent, stood before you; and its formwas awesome. 32 This image’s head was of fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. 34 You watched while a stone was cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were crushed together, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; the wind carried them away so that no trace of them was found. And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.
36 “This is the dream. Now we will tell the interpretation of it before the king. 37 You, O king, are a king of kings. For the God of heaven has given you a kingdom, power, strength, and glory; 38 and wherever the children of men dwell, or the beasts of the field and the birds of the heaven, He has given them into your hand, and has made you ruler over them all—you are this head of gold. 39 But after you shall arise another kingdom inferior to yours; then another, a third kingdom of bronze, which shall rule over all the earth. 40 And the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron, inasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything; and like iron that crushes, that kingdom will break in pieces and crush all the others. 41 Whereas you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; yet the strength of the iron shall be in it, just as you saw the iron mixed with ceramic clay. 42 And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly fragile. 43 As you saw iron mixed with ceramic clay, they will mingle with the seed of men; but they will not adhere to one another, just as iron does not mix with clay. 44 And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.45 Inasmuch as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold—the great God has made known to the king what will come to pass after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation is sure.”
Daniel and His Friends Promoted
46 Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face, prostrate before Daniel, and commanded that they should present an offering and incense to him. 47 The king answered Daniel, and said, “Truly your God is the God of gods, the Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, since you could reveal this secret.” 48 Then the king promoted Daniel and gave him many great gifts; and he made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief administrator over all the wise men of Babylon. 49 Also Daniel petitioned the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego over the affairs of the province of Babylon; but Daniel sat in the gate of the king.”

(Daniel 4:1-37) Nebuchadnezzar’s Second Dream
“4 Nebuchadnezzar the king, To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you.
2 I thought it good to declare the signs and wonders that the Most High God has worked for me.
3 How great are His signs, And how mighty His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And His dominion is from generation to generation.
4 I, Nebuchadnezzar, was at rest in my house, and flourishing in my palace. 5 I saw a dream which made me afraid, and the thoughts on my bed and the visions of my head troubled me. 6 Therefore I issued a decree to bring in all the wise men of Babylon before me, that they might make known to me the interpretation of the dream. 7 Then the magicians, the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers came in, and I told them the dream; but they did not make known to me its interpretation. 8 But at last Daniel came before me (his name is Belteshazzar, according to the name of my god; in him is the Spirit of the Holy God), and I told the dream before him, saying: 9 “Belteshazzar, chief of the magicians, because I know that the Spirit of the Holy God is in you, and no secret troubles you, explain to me the visions of my dream that I have seen, and its interpretation.
10 “These were the visions of my head while on my bed: I was looking, and behold, A tree in the midst of the earth, And its height was great.
11 The tree grew and became strong; Its height reached to the heavens, And it could be seen to the ends of all the earth.
12 Its leaves were lovely, Its fruit abundant, And in it was food for all. The beasts of the field found shade under it, The birds of the heavens dwelt in its branches, And all flesh was fed from it.
13 “I saw in the visions of my head while on my bed, and there was a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven. 14 He cried aloud and said thus: ‘Chop down the tree and cut off its branches, Strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit. Let the beasts get out from under it, And the birds from its branches.
15 Nevertheless leave the stump and roots in the earth, Bound with a band of iron and bronze, In the tender grass of the field. Let it be wet with the dew of heaven, And let him graze with the beasts On the grass of the earth.
16 Let his heart be changed from that of a man, Let him be given the heart of a beast, And let seven times pass over him.
17 ‘This decision is by the decree of the watchers, And the sentence by the word of the holy ones, In order that the living may know That the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, Gives it to whomever He will, And sets over it the lowest of men.’
18 “This dream I, King Nebuchadnezzar, have seen. Now you, Belteshazzar, declare its interpretation, since all the wise men of my kingdom are not able to make known to me the interpretation; but you are able, for the Spirit of the Holy God is in you.”
Daniel Explains the Second Dream
19 Then Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, was astonished for a time, and his thoughts troubled him. So the king spoke, and said, “Belteshazzar, do not let the dream or its interpretation trouble you.” Belteshazzar answered and said, “My lord, may the dream concern those who hate you, and its interpretation concern your enemies!
20 “The tree that you saw, which grew and became strong, whose height reached to the heavens and which could be seen by all the earth, 21 whose leaves were lovely and its fruit abundant, in which was food for all, under which the beasts of the field dwelt, and in whose branches the birds of the heaven had their home— 22 it is you, O king, who have grown and become strong; for your greatness has grown and reaches to the heavens, and your dominion to the end of the earth.
23 “And inasmuch as the king saw a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven and saying, ‘Chop down the tree and destroy it, but leave its stump and roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze in the tender grass of the field; let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let him graze with the beasts of the field, till seven times pass over him’; 24 this is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the Most High, which has come upon my lord the king:25 They shall drive you from men, your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make you eat grass like oxen. They shall wet you with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.
26 “And inasmuch as they gave the command to leave the stump and roots of the tree, your kingdom shall be assured to you, after you come to know that Heaven rules. 27 Therefore, O king, let my advice be acceptable to you; break off your sins by being righteous, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the poor. Perhaps there may be a lengthening of your prosperity.”
Nebuchadnezzar’s Humiliation
28 All this came upon King Nebuchadnezzar. 29 At the end of the twelve months he was walking about the royal palace of Babylon.30 The king spoke, saying, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?”
31 While the word was still in the king’s mouth, a voice fell from heaven: “King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: the kingdom has departed from you! 32 And they shall drive you from men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. They shall make you eat grass like oxen; and seven times shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.”
33 That very hour the word was fulfilled concerning Nebuchadnezzar; he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen; his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair had grown like eagles’ feathersand his nails like birds’ claws.
Nebuchadnezzar Praises God
34 And at the end of the time I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my understanding returned to me; and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever: For His dominion is an everlasting dominion, And His kingdom is from generation to generation.
35 All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing; He does according to His will in the army of heaven And among the inhabitants of the earth. No one can restrain His hand Or say to Him, “What have You done?”
36 At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my honor and splendor returned to me. My counselors and nobles resorted to me, I was restored to my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to me. 37 Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth, and His ways justice. And those who walk in pride He is able to put down.”

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"Give ear, you that rule over multitudes, and boast of many nations. 
For your dominion was given you from the Lord, and your sovereignty from the Most High;"

"For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God"

“For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.”

(Wisdom 6:1-9) “1 Listen therefore, O kings, and understand; learn, O judges of the ends of the earth. 2 Give ear, you that rule over multitudes, and boast of many nations. 3 For your dominion was given you from the Lord, and your sovereignty from the Most High; he will search out your works and inquire into your plans. 4 Because as servants of his kingdom you did not rule rightly, or keep the law, or walk according to the purpose of God, 5 he will come upon you terribly and swiftly, because severe judgment falls on those in high places. 6 For the lowliest may be pardoned in mercy, but the mighty will be mightily tested. 7 For the Lord of all will not stand in awe of anyone, or show deference to greatness; because he himself made both small and great, and he takes thought for all alike. 8 But a strict inquiry is in store for the mighty. 9 To you then, O monarchs, my words are directed, so that you may learn wisdom and not transgress.”

(Romans 13:1) Submit to Government
“13 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.”

(Luke 12:48) “48 But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.”

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4. The duty of the nations.

“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.”

(Matthew 22:15-22) The Pharisees: Is It Lawful to Pay Taxes to Caesar?
“15 Then the Pharisees went and plotted how they might entangle Him in His talk. 16 And they sent to Him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that You are true, and teach the way of God in truth; nor do You care about anyone, for You do not regard the person of men. 17 Tell us, therefore, what do You think? Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”
18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why do you test Me, you hypocrites? 19 Show Me the tax money.” So they brought Him a denarius.
20 And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?”
21 They said to Him, “Caesar’s.” And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 22 When they had heard these words, they marveled, and left Him and went their way.”

(Mark 12:13-17) The Pharisees: Is It Lawful to Pay Taxes to Caesar?
“13 Then they sent to Him some of the Pharisees and the Herodians, to catch Him in His words. 14 When they had come, they said to Him, “Teacher, we know that You are true, and care about no one; for You do not regard the person of men, but teach the way of God in truth. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not? 15 Shall we pay, or shall we not pay?” But He, knowing their hypocrisy, said to them, “Why do you test Me? Bring Me a denarius that I may see it.” 16 So they brought it. And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?” They said to Him, “Caesar’s.”
17 And Jesus answered and said to them, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they marveled at Him.”

(Luke 20:19-26) “19 And the chief priests and the scribes that very hour sought to lay hands on Him, but they feared the people —for they knew He had spoken this parable against them.
20 So they watched Him, and sent spies who pretended to be righteous, that they might seize on His words, in order to deliver Him to the power and the authority of the governor.
21 Then they asked Him, saying, “Teacher, we know that You say and teach rightly, and You do not show personal favoritism, but teach the way of God in truth: 22 Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”
23 But He perceived their craftiness, and said to them, “Why do you test Me? 24 Show Me a denarius. Whose image and inscription does it have?” They answered and said, “Caesar’s.”
25 And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”
26 But they could not catch Him in His words in the presence of the people. And they marveled at His answer and kept silent.”

(Romans 13:1-7) Submit to Government
“13 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. 4 For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. 5 Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. 7 Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.”

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5. “A roaring lion and a charging bear Is a wicked ruler over poor people.”

(Proverbs 28:15) “15 Like a roaring lion and a charging bear Is a wicked ruler over poor people.”

(Proverbs 29:2) “2 When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; But when a wicked man rules, the people groan.”

(Proverbs 29:12) “12 If a ruler pays attention to lies, All his servants become wicked.”

(Proverbs 29:16) “16 When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increases; But the righteous will see their fall.”

The insatiable human eye.

Is it possible to satisfy the human eye?

(Proverbs 27:20) “20 Hell and Destruction are never full; So the eyes of man are never satisfied.”

(Ecclesiastes 6:7) “7 All the labor of man is for his mouth, And yet the soul is not satisfied.”

(Ecclesiastes 1:7-9) “7 All the rivers run into the sea, Yet the sea is not full; To the place from which the rivers come, There they return again.
8 All things are full of labor; Man cannot express it. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, Nor the ear filled with hearing.
9 That which has been is what will be, That which is done is what will be done, And there is nothing new under the sun.”

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“The lamp of the body is the eye.” “If your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness.”

(Matthew 6:23) “23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!”

(Luke 11:34-36) “34 The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. 35 Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness. 36 If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, the whole body will be full of light, as when the bright shining of a lamp gives you light.””

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Covetousness is the result of an insatiable eye.

(Ezekiel 33:31) “31 So they come to you as people do, they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them; for with their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain.”

(Jeremiah 22:17) “17 “Yet your eyes and your heart are for nothing but your covetousness, For shedding innocent blood, And practicing oppression and violence.””

(Ezekiel 22:12-14) “12 In you they take bribes to shed blood; you take usury and increase; you have made profit from your neighbors by extortion, and have forgotten Me,” says the Lord God.
13 “Behold, therefore, I beat My fists at the dishonest profit which you have made, and at the bloodshed which has been in your midst. 14 Can your heart endure, or can your hands remain strong, in the days when I shall deal with you? I, the Lord, have spoken, and will do it.”

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God stretches out His hand against the covetous and those who deal falsely, to remove their inheritance.

(Jeremiah 6:12-13) “12 And their houses shall be turned over to others, Fields and wives together; For I will stretch out My hand Against the inhabitants of the land,” says the Lord.
13 “Because from the least of them even to the greatest of them, Everyone is given to covetousness; And from the prophet even to the priest, Everyone deals falsely.”

(Jeremiah 8:9-11) “9 The wise men are ashamed, They are dismayed and taken. Behold, they have rejected the word of the Lord; So what wisdom do they have?
10 Therefore I will give their wives to others, And their fields to those who will inherit them; Because from the least even to the greatest Everyone is given to covetousness; From the prophet even to the priest Everyone deals falsely.
11 For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of My people slightly, Saying, ‘Peace, peace!’ When there is no peace.”

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The covetousness of false prophets and false teachers.

“By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber.”

(2 Peter 2:1-17) “2 But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. 2 And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. 3 By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber.
4 For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; 5 and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly; 6 and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; 7 and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked 8 (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)—9 then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are presumptuous, self-willed. They are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries, 11 whereas angels, who are greater in power and might, do not bring a reviling accusation against them before the Lord.
12 But these, like natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed, speak evil of the things they do not understand, and will utterly perish in their own corruption, 13 and will receive the wages of unrighteousness, as those who count it pleasure to carouse in the daytime. They are spots and blemishes, carousing in their own deceptions while they feast with you, 14 having eyes full of adultery and that cannot cease from sin, enticing unstable souls. They have a heart trained in covetous practices, and are accursed children. 15 They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; 16 but he was rebuked for his iniquity: a dumb donkey speaking with a man’s voice restrained the madness of the prophet.
17 These are wells without water, clouds carried by a tempest, for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.”

(Jude 1:3-13) “3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. 4 For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.
5 But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe. 6 And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day; 7 as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
8 Likewise also these dreamers defile the flesh, reject authority, and speak evil of dignitaries. 9 Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” 10 But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves. 11 Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.
12 These are spots in your love feasts, while they feast with you without fear, serving only themselves. They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots; 13 raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.”