Battles of Faith

The Avenger Of Blood

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Ivor & Atonte Myers


Series Code: BOF

Program Code: BOF000058

00:14 Welcome to Battles of Faith.
00:16 We're your hosts, Ivor and Atonte Myers,
00:19 and we're with Power of The Lamb Ministries.
00:21 In our last program, we talked about the millennium
00:25 and we learned about what we'll be doing
00:27 during those 1000 years in heaven.
00:29 And today, we're gonna talk about
00:31 God's intense passionate love for each and every one of us,
00:35 and all that He's doing to try to save us.
00:37 That's right, our God has a, has a burning love for us,
00:40 a burning passion for us, and He wants to see us saved,
00:43 doesn't want to see anyone lost.
00:45 And I think one of the stories, Atonte,
00:47 you and I have spoken about before that I believe really
00:51 illustrates God's love first in amazing way is one that
00:55 we're gonna share today, and we want to actually
00:57 open it up with a story.
01:00 It's a figure that I've just, we've kind of made up,
01:04 but this, these events would
01:06 actually happened in the time of Israel.
01:08 And so, we're gonna take you through a little story,
01:10 we want you to meet a man by the name of Jiao,
01:13 don't go look in the Bible for Jiao.
01:15 We're talking about an imaginary figure here,
01:17 but the story, the event that would that happens,
01:21 wouldn't happen very frequently.
01:23 Jiao is living in Canaan, he's in the Promised Land
01:28 and all things are going good.
01:31 He's got a family and kids and he goes out to work.
01:35 And one day at work something happens
01:38 that that changes everything.
01:40 Jiao accidentally kills a person.
01:43 We don't know how it happened, but we know that Jiao
01:46 runs home to his family, he tells his wife what happens.
01:49 And they immediately begin to weep
01:52 because they know what must happen.
01:54 Jiao must run, he must flee to what the Bible calls
01:58 one of six cities of refuge, the cities of refuge.
02:04 And we're gonna read about that for a little while.
02:06 So let's go to the Book of Deuteronomy Chapter 19,
02:08 we invite you to get your Bibles.
02:10 Deuteronomy 19, we're gonna read a little bit about these
02:12 cities of refuge and why they were established?
02:15 So, 19 verses 1, how about I'll read verses one through three
02:20 and then you can read verse five through seven?
02:23 Okay, that's right. Okay, it says,
02:25 I'm gonna start from verse three.
02:27 It says, "Thou shalt prepare thee a way,
02:29 and divide the coasts of thy land,
02:31 which the Lord thy God, giveth thee to inherit it,
02:34 into three parts, that every slayer may flee thither."
02:38 Now here it says three, but later on,
02:40 we're gonna see the three more cities were added.
02:43 It says "And this is the case of the slayer, which may,
02:46 which shall flee thither, that he may live.
02:50 Whosoever killeth his neighbor ignorantly,
02:53 whom he hated not in time past,
02:55 as when a man goeth into the wood with his neighbor
02:58 to hew wood, and his hand fetcheth a stroke
03:01 with the axe to cut down the tree,
03:03 and the head slippeth from the helve,
03:04 and lighted upon his neighbor that he die,
03:07 he shall flee unto one of those cities, and live."
03:11 "Lest the avenger of the blood pursue the slayer,
03:15 while his heart is hot, and overtake him,
03:18 because the way is long, and slay him,
03:20 where as he was not worthy of death,
03:22 in as much as he hated him not in time past.
03:26 Wherefore I command thee, saying,
03:28 Thou shalt separate three cities for thee.
03:32 And if the Lord thy God, enlarge the coast,
03:34 as he has sworn unto thy Fathers,
03:37 and give thee all the land which he promised
03:39 to give unto thy Fathers."
03:41 Okay, now I'm going to jump down to verse 12, verse 11.
03:44 It says, "But if any man hate his neighbor,
03:46 and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him,
03:49 and smite him mortally that he die,
03:52 and fleeth into one of these cities.
03:54 Then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him
03:57 thence and deliver him into the hand
04:00 of the avenger of blood that he may die."
04:03 So, so let's recap what we've just read here.
04:06 Basically the Bible was, is telling us that that
04:08 when a person accidentally kills someone,
04:12 they could flee to one of these cities of refuge.
04:16 We'll read later in Joshua 20 that there were six cities.
04:19 And they were to flee to anyone of these cities
04:22 and there they would find refuge,
04:25 if they were innocent, if they had actually been
04:29 guilty of intentional murder, then the elders of the city
04:33 took that man and put him outside of the city,
04:36 where the avenger of blood would take vengeance upon him.
04:40 Now, who is the avenger of blood?
04:42 The avenger of blood here that the Hebrew term
04:44 for the avenger of blood, this is a term ga'al,
04:47 and it means the nearest of kin.
04:51 In other words, the closest person to the,
04:54 to the deceased had the right to seek vengeance.
04:59 Now imagine what kind of stress that most,
05:00 that would have been.
05:01 You know, you accidentally kill a person,
05:03 you don't know this person's family,
05:05 you could be walking in the streets,
05:06 in the markets somewhere, and a total stranger
05:09 just walk up to you think, maybe he's coming up
05:11 to get directions and he just takes out
05:13 a knife and puts it in you.
05:15 And then lets you know, I am such and such as
05:18 Nearest of Kin. Amen, wow.
05:19 I mean, yeah, it could have been a--
05:20 And that was the legal thing to do.
05:22 That's right's, so what you have here is our figure Jiao
05:27 now realizes that he must be on the run and off he goes
05:33 to the City of Refuge, doesn't have much time to pack,
05:35 doesn't have much time to gather things.
05:37 He's gotta go, he is not gonna see
05:39 his family again at least for sometime.
05:42 And I can just imagine, imagine the,
05:45 the fear as you hear the avenger of blood
05:50 on your trail chasing you, you can't see his face,
05:52 it's dark, and you're terrified,
05:55 but you're running and you're trying to get
05:57 to one of these cities of refuge.
06:00 I mean, just imagine what kind of an experience that would be
06:04 you want to get to that City of Refuge.
06:06 And you want to get there quickly,
06:08 you want to get there fast.
06:09 Let's go ahead and go over to the Book of Joshua Chapter 20.
06:13 Joshua Chapter 20, and while we're turning there,
06:15 let me mention a few more things
06:16 about the City of Refuge.
06:19 The streets we just read in Deuteronomy 19
06:21 that that a way was to be prepared.
06:23 In other words, these streets that led to
06:26 the cities of refuge were to be without ditches,
06:30 without stones, or rocks,
06:32 nothing that would cause a person to stumble.
06:35 It is said that there were sign poles that were place upon,
06:38 upon those, those, in those streets that pointed to
06:43 the City of Refuge, saying, "Refuge, refuge."
06:46 Almost like this is the way run he in it.
06:50 And it's amazing when we begin to think about the,
06:52 the analogy what the gospel, when we realize that we have
06:55 done wrong, off we go, we realize, man,
06:58 we need to get to the City of Refuge
07:00 because the avenger of blood is on our trail.
07:03 And I praise God because, you know, the Bible says,
07:06 "Ye are the light of the world." Right.
07:09 A city set on the hill cannot be hid.
07:13 In other words, beloved, there are people out there
07:15 that are looking for the way of salvation.
07:18 And God calls us, us as Christians to be light poles,
07:23 guiding those who are seeking refuge,
07:26 seeking Christ, seeking God,
07:29 we're to be sign poles on our duty's saying,
07:31 this is the way walk ye in it.
07:33 And I think, it's so powerful that this City of Refuge
07:37 in the Bible there, there could be nothing
07:39 in the way of the person, nothing that would cause
07:42 him to stumble or fall or lose his way,
07:45 and when you apply that spiritually to us as Christians
07:49 we are not to be stumbling blocks,
07:51 we are to assist and help others
07:54 who are just finding their way to Jesus.
07:57 And to be so mindful of these people and what could be
08:02 possibly offensive to them or harm them or make them
08:05 misunderstand God in someway.
08:07 And I think we need to take that
08:08 responsibility very serious.
08:10 That's right, that's right.
08:11 Joshua Chapter 20, the Bible tells us in verse, verse 3,
08:16 it says, the siege of refuge were be established.
08:20 "That the slayer that killeth any person unawares
08:23 and unwittingly may flee thither,
08:25 and they shall be your refuge from the avenger of blood.
08:30 And when he that does flee unto one of those cities shall
08:32 stand at the entering of the gate of the city,
08:34 and shall declare his cause in the ears of the elders
08:37 of that city, they shall take him into the city unto them,
08:40 and give him a place, that he may dwell among them.
08:43 And if the avenger of blood pursue after him,
08:46 they shall not deliver the slayer up into his hand,
08:49 because he smote his neighbor how unwittingly,
08:52 and hated him not before time.
08:55 And he shall dwell in that city,
08:56 until he stand before the congregation for judgment,
08:59 and until the death of the high priest that shall be
09:03 in those days, then shall the slayer return,
09:06 and come unto his own city, and unto his own house,
09:08 and unto the city from whence he fled."
09:11 So, Jiao runs to the city and he makes it.
09:15 And when he gets to the city we're told that that he had,
09:19 if he was innocent he could remain in that city,
09:23 and have protection until the death of the high priest,
09:27 then he was free.
09:30 That's an amazing thought.
09:31 That it is the death of our High Priest,
09:33 Jesus Christ that sets us free
09:37 from the condemnation of sin and guilt.
09:40 But the analogy here, Atonte, is it really breaks down,
09:43 you see the Bible tells us that God is our refuge.
09:47 And I'd say, "Praise God for that." Amen.
09:49 God is our refuge, that's good news.
09:51 But that good news indicates bad news because if we need
09:54 a refuge it means we must be guilty of something.
09:57 And we're going, what would I be guilty
09:59 of that I need to run to a City of Refuge.
10:01 Well, we're guilty of crime, of sin, of murder.
10:06 Murder? What are you talking about?
10:09 Well, the entire human race
10:11 caused the death of the Son of God.
10:16 And because of that, because of our rejection of God,
10:23 it caused the death of His Son and because of that
10:25 we need a refuge, we need to run, we need to flee.
10:29 And it's quite amazing because once you got to the city,
10:34 if you were, if you were not-- if you were not guilty of
10:42 intentional rejection or intentional murder,
10:46 you could stay in the city.
10:47 But if you were guilty of intentional murder,
10:50 you were put out of the city.
10:51 Now guess what, when we come to Christ,
10:52 which one of us can say, it was an intentional.
10:56 Which one of us can say,
10:57 I didn't intentionally reject you.
10:59 We all have turned our backs at some point, you know,
11:03 we come to this world, we do our own thing,
11:05 we live our own way, and we come to the place
11:07 where we have to come to the God
11:08 and literally throw ourselves at His mercy and say,
11:11 "Look, I know I turned my back against you,
11:13 I know it's intentional.
11:14 You have every right to put me out of your refuge,
11:18 out of your city, please, will you have mercy on me."
11:21 And this is where the grace and mercy of God,
11:24 and the love of God is revealed,
11:25 that He doesn't put us out.
11:27 When we, when we the declare guilty like,
11:29 if we come and say, "Innocent."
11:31 God says, "Guilty." But if we say, "Guilty."
11:35 God says, "Innocent." By the blood of My Son.
11:38 By the blood of My Son. Amen.
11:39 It's an amazing thing, it's an amazing thought
11:42 that God wants to be our refuge.
11:44 And it's, you know, it's quite interesting,
11:47 Atonte, that when you consider
11:52 the character of God and who He is?
11:56 I'd like to tell, when we tell the story,
11:59 we like to share this thought that, you know,
12:04 the person that you're guilty of killing the avenger
12:08 of blood was the nearest of kin to the person
12:12 you're guilty of killing.
12:15 Well, Jiao gets to the city.
12:17 You know, oh, let's say, "Yes."
12:19 We get to the city, the kingdom of God, I mean,
12:21 you know, the refuge of God and we're like God,
12:23 I'm so glad you saved me, the avenger of blood was on my
12:26 trail and oh, man you should,
12:28 it seemed like he was right behind me,
12:30 but there is something strange about it because,
12:32 you know, it kind of felt like,
12:34 like he could have caught me, but he didn't catch me.
12:38 And then God begins to reveal something.
12:41 You see the avenger of blood is the nearest of kin
12:44 to the one we were guilty of killing.
12:48 When humanity realizes, wait a minute,
12:50 we're guilty of killing Christ, of rejecting him.
12:54 Who him--Who is the nearest of kin to Jesus?
12:57 It's God. It's God.
12:59 The Father. The Father.
13:00 Remember Jiao couldn't see his face.
13:03 He was running for his life.
13:05 And beloved, the point that
13:06 that we want you to understand here's that,
13:08 sometimes, we think that God is out to destroy us and kill us
13:12 when He's not trying to do that at all.
13:14 He's simply trying to chase us into safety.
13:19 That's right, the Bible says,
13:20 "That those who He loves He rebukes and chastens."
13:24 That's right, and we like to say,
13:26 those who, you know, those whom,
13:29 whom He loves He chastens and He chases. That's right.
13:34 You know, God, chases us, God is after us,
13:36 He's trying to run us into that city.
13:40 And you know, I'd like to share this way.
13:43 If you ever had a puppy, you know, a brand new puppy.
13:45 Oh, the puppy's so cute and the puppy habits to get out
13:47 of the house and there is a dangerous highway nearby.
13:50 And you maybe come running, bursting out the house trying
13:53 to save the puppy, but the puppy is looking like,
13:55 "Oh, no, he's going to kill me."
13:57 He is not a person. Yeah, no, no, no,
13:59 you're coming at this little creature trying to save it,
14:02 that's the same thing God is doing and I think about it.
14:05 You're coming at the puppy from both all angles and all sides
14:08 because the puppy is just kind of going wild. That's right.
14:11 So you're trying to direct it back into the house.
14:13 That's right, exactly.
14:15 You know, it's amazing I think,
14:16 this verse really jumps out of this.
14:18 Look at Isaiah Chapter 54. Isaiah Chapter 54,
14:23 and we're gonna take a look at verse 8 and 9, Isaiah 54.
14:27 So, if God is chasing, chasing us
14:30 and the City of Refuge represents Jesus.
14:33 It's, they're all working together.
14:34 They're all working-- It's like,
14:35 you know, the Holy Spirit says,
14:38 "Okay, I'll be the one that bring conviction."
14:40 God says, "Okay, I'll be the refuge."
14:42 And Jesus says, "Okay, I'll be the way.
14:45 No man can come unto the Father but by me, I'll be the way."
14:47 So as almost like the God head,
14:50 the God head is working together to try to get us
14:54 sometimes hard headed, stubborn, you know,
14:57 sinners to get to the City of Refuge,
15:00 so that we can be safe, so that we can be saved.
15:04 Isaiah 54, Isaiah 54 verse 7.
15:08 The Bible says here, "For a small moment have I
15:10 forsaken thee, but with great mercies will I gather thee.
15:14 In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment."
15:19 Remember, Jiao couldn't see his face.
15:21 Beloved, listen, sometimes you may lose a job
15:23 and you're thinking, oh, man, you know, this is the devil and
15:26 you know, you break up with that girlfriend,
15:29 that boyfriend and you know, you look back
15:31 and you begin to realize, man, God.
15:33 What a blessing? Yeah, what a blessing?
15:34 That was God trying to chase me,
15:36 that was God shutting down doors and trying to save me
15:40 from this and save from that.
15:41 God wasn't out to destroy you, He was not to make life
15:44 miserable for you, He was out to try to save you,
15:47 He was out to try to get you to move to come to Him.
15:51 Isaiah 54 verse, verse 8.
15:53 "And a little wrath have I hid my face from thee,
15:55 but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee,
15:59 saith the Lord thy Redeemer." Guess what?
16:04 This word redeemer is the same Hebrew word that is used to
16:08 translate the avenger of blood.
16:12 It is the Hebrew word Ga'al. Wow.
16:15 Nearest of kin. Wow.
16:17 God Himself declares Himself the nearest of kin.
16:21 He is the one that's chasing us.
16:23 Whom God loves, He chases.
16:25 And, yes, whom He loves, He chastens.
16:29 God is on a chase, He's after you not to destroy you,
16:32 but to chase you into that city before it is too late.
16:37 You're saying, pastor, what city?
16:38 Hold on, we're getting there.
16:40 But I want you to think about this concept.
16:42 Whom God loves he chastens. What does that mean?
16:45 You know, if we can think about a group of people that
16:48 God like seriously chastened in the Old Testament.
16:51 We would think about the Egyptians.
16:53 I would think about the Egyptians,
16:55 like they got serious, serious punishments from the Lord.
17:00 Yes, they did. But you see,
17:01 there is something behind that.
17:03 You see, when God extending the rod.
17:05 You know, the Bible says, "Spare the rod."
17:07 Or, you know, talks about how if we spare the rod,
17:09 well I'm kind of -- Yeah, kind of,
17:11 you know, putting that together,
17:13 but you spare the rod and you can,
17:14 you know, the rod of correction
17:16 and reproof is a good thing.
17:18 When God sends Moses with the rod into Egypt,
17:22 He is actually trying to reach out to save the Egyptians.
17:27 Pastor, what did you just say, save the Egyptians?
17:29 No, God hated the Egyptians. Wait a minute.
17:31 When God turned their water into blood,
17:34 He was trying to get them to be thirsty for something better.
17:39 Because they could have left too.
17:40 They could have left too. In fact, Egyptians did leave.
17:44 What God was trying to do, was He was trying to make
17:46 Egypt such a miserable place to be that the Egyptians
17:50 would want to leave too.
17:52 I mean, you think about, you're living in your place
17:53 and all of a sudden lice begin to swarm your territory
17:58 and your water turns into blood.
17:59 How many of you would actually stay in that area?
18:01 We're like, oh man, you know what, this is so nice,
18:03 I think I'm gonna stay here anyway.
18:04 I hate to sound so haute, but if I turn on my facet
18:08 and blood comes out and it's all around town, I'm gone.
18:11 Yeah. I only need one plague.
18:13 But these guys, yes, many of us only need one plague.
18:15 These guys, you know, 9-10 plagues and they were
18:18 stubborn, resisting, God showed,
18:21 because when the children of Israel left Egypt,
18:25 Egyptians left with them.
18:28 Many more could have gone, but they chose to rebel
18:32 against the chastening and the chasing of the Lord.
18:37 And many people are gonna be lost because they refuse
18:40 the chastening and the chasing of the Lord.
18:45 You see, so God is after us, He's trying to chases us--
18:48 When you go to that club, you used to love and all of a
18:51 sudden it's no longer tasteful to you, you fine,
18:54 you know--I used to like these things, but now I don't.
18:58 It's God coming in your life and sending that rod to make
19:01 the things you once used to like, to make you now go,
19:04 you know what, I don't think.
19:06 How can I've enjoyed that before?
19:07 Oh, I don't think I want to be here anymore.
19:09 And he's trying to get you to leave your comfort zone
19:13 to head to the City of Refuge.
19:16 That's right, God can, God can do that very quickly.
19:19 I hear a people how are alcoholics
19:20 and they loved alcohol.
19:22 And now it just totally turns their stomach and they have
19:25 absolutel no desire for it.
19:26 That's right, that's right. God can do that.
19:27 These cities of refuge, Atonte, well found in elevated places.
19:31 Read Joshua Chapter 20, there were all in mountains,
19:34 mountains lifted up, high places.
19:37 It's interesting that Christ himself said,
19:41 "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth,
19:45 will draw all men unto me."
19:47 I believe that we need to run to Mount Calvary where Christ
19:53 and His shed blood on our behalf becomes our refuge.
19:58 That's where God's trying to chase us.
20:00 And when we get to the city,
20:02 we don't say, oh, you know, what?
20:03 Because remember, it was the death
20:04 of the high priest that freed us.
20:05 When we get to that city, we don't say what Jesus is dead,
20:09 Jesus died, so now I can go back.
20:11 No, you stay in that city because our high priest is no
20:15 longer dead, He is alive and as long as He is alive,
20:18 you stay in the city.
20:20 You want to see our family and friends?
20:21 Invite them to the city.
20:23 Tell them to come on to the city.
20:25 And by the way, you know, they all need to come because,
20:27 what, the avenger of blood is on their trail
20:32 and God is trying to chase them,
20:33 that's what He's, that's what He's doing.
20:34 He is trying to chase them into that city.
20:38 So, what do we have happening here?
20:40 Why is God trying to chase us and into,
20:45 ultimately into what city?
20:48 We're gonna fast forward, and we're now gonna go
20:51 to the very end of time, the end of the millennium.
20:55 And I want you to notice, just go with me
20:56 to the Book of Revelation.
20:58 Revelation Chapter 20, Revelation Chapter 20,
21:07 and I want you to notice with me again.
21:11 Revelation Chapter 20, we're gonna take a look at verse,
21:16 verse 11. "And I saw a great white throne,
21:20 and Him that sat on it, from whose face the Earth
21:23 and the heaven fled away,
21:24 and there was found no place for them.
21:27 And I saw the dead, small and great,
21:29 stand before God, and the books were opened.
21:31 And another book was opened, which is the book of life."
21:34 Okay, you can pause right there.
21:35 Here we have the Book of Life and the judgment scene,
21:39 and the wicked are there and they're about to be judged.
21:42 But guess where the righteous are?
21:46 Go back up to verse 9, the Bible says,
21:50 "And they, that is the wicked,
21:51 went upon the breadth of the earth,
21:52 and compassed the camp of the saints about,
21:56 and the beloved city, the beloved city."
22:00 Okay, so what's happening here?
22:02 The second coming has occurred,
22:04 Jesus has taken the righteous to heaven and they have
22:07 entered that city, New Jerusalem.
22:12 At the end of the millennium, that city is seen coming down
22:15 out of heaven while the wicked who are now resurrected after
22:19 the one thousand years are resurrected,
22:21 and what they do is, they try to get around that city.
22:25 Now here's why this is so important to understand.
22:26 Remember, God was trying to chase us into the city, why?
22:35 Because if you met the avenger of blood
22:38 and you were outside the city, it was not good,
22:44 because at that point, you were subject to death.
22:49 Do you see what's happening here?
22:52 God knows that our time is coming where the New Jerusalem
22:57 will be setup on this Earth.
22:59 He's trying everything He can now in His power
23:01 to chase us to Calvary.
23:05 By the way, it's interesting.
23:07 We've been talking about this blueprint,
23:08 plan of salvation throughout our entire study.
23:11 And you see that there were six cities of refuge,
23:14 it's interesting that there were six articles
23:16 of furniture in the sanctuary.
23:17 Can we get our, our picture up very quickly.
23:20 You're probably and totally used to the picture now,
23:23 but you see there the Altar of Sacrifice,
23:25 number one in the sanctuary, the outer court.
23:29 And then you have the Laver, that's item number two,
23:31 where you're baptized.
23:32 You have the Table of Showbread in the Holy Place,
23:34 that's where the word of God is represented.
23:37 The Altar of Incense representing the seven the,
23:41 representing the prayer, and the Seven-Branched Candlestick
23:45 representing letting our light shine,
23:47 and then you have the Ark of the Covenant
23:48 right at the very top. There we go.
23:51 God is trying chase us to station number one,
23:56 accept the sacrifice of Christ.
23:58 He's trying to chase us to be baptized,
24:00 He's running after us, so that we will move to accept
24:04 the word of God and to pray and to accept
24:06 Christ's intersession, and to let our light shine.
24:09 He's ultimately trying to chase us into that
24:10 Most Holy Place, so that He can come
24:13 and gather us up together and take us to that city.
24:16 And as a result many will be saved,
24:20 but those who refused to be chased are gonna be,
24:23 are gonna meet the avenger of blood.
24:27 Whose blood? His Son's blood outside of the city.
24:33 What happens then?
24:34 This is where, Atonte, we close this whole story off
24:40 with one of the most emotional goodbyes ever.
24:43 You see, we like to share in the Bible
24:46 that heaven is like a City of Fire.
24:48 You know, God, the Bible says, "God is a consuming fire."
24:51 The Bible says that that, "His angels are like fire."
24:55 The Bible says, "His throne is a throne of fire."
24:57 In other words, heaven is a City of Fire.
25:02 There is a sea of glass mingled with fire.
25:04 And if we want to stand on that sea of glass mingled with
25:06 fire, we need to be fireproof, we need to be fireproof.
25:11 So that we're not destroyed. So that we're not destroyed.
25:14 And so, what happens is,
25:15 why does God manifest Himself as fire?
25:18 It's very simple.
25:19 The Book, Song of Solomon tells us that God,
25:22 that fire is like a burning love.
25:25 The reason why God manifest Himself as fire is because
25:27 He's passionate, He loves us.
25:30 Imagine when God created Adam and Eve,
25:32 He could go up to them and just, they weren't afraid,
25:35 but when sin entered they became fearful of that fire.
25:39 God's ideal was to restore man to a way in which He could
25:44 dwell in the presence of God forever and not be consumed.
25:48 Amen. So we have stories like the Burning Bush.
25:50 The bush burned, but it wasn't what? Consumed.
25:53 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego cast into the fire,
25:56 nothing happens to them, but the wicked
25:57 who cast them in, they were destroyed.
26:00 This is exactly what's going to happened at the end of time.
26:02 God is a consuming fire.
26:05 He is not destroying the wicked with fire because
26:07 it's the most painful thing you can think of.
26:09 The wicked are destroyed because they are destroyed
26:11 by the presence of God's love.
26:14 The way I like to share it, Atonte,
26:16 is that God with those great big arms of fire
26:19 will reach out and embrace the wicked one last time,
26:23 in that embrace, the wicked are going to feel
26:26 the love that they had rejected.
26:29 They're going to feel what it would be like,
26:32 heaven would be hell to them.
26:35 God desires for the righteous to be able to stand in his
26:38 presence and burn forever without being consumed.
26:41 That's why he says, "Be baptized with the Holy Spirit
26:44 and with fire," because God wants us to shine like the
26:47 stars forever. Right.
26:48 The wicked are brunt up because they're not fireproof.
26:51 That's right. They're totally consumed and destroyed
26:54 while the righteous get to stand
26:56 in the presence of God and not be consumed.
26:58 Fire will be like air to them.
27:00 God will be able to commit to them, touch them,
27:02 nothing because we're fireproof.
27:05 That's right-- Why?
27:06 Because we've been baptized by that Spirit of Fire.
27:08 That's what heaven will be like.
27:09 That's what heaven will be like.
27:11 A place of burning intense love.
27:15 What a, what a sad farewell, when God wipes away the tears
27:18 from our eyes, because, because at that time all sin
27:23 and sinners will be destroyed.
27:25 What a time that will be. It's, it's a strange farewell.
27:30 Yes. And yet imagine how much it will hurt God's heart
27:34 to have to say goodbye in that way.
27:37 Wow, He doesn't want to have to say, goodbye in that way.
27:41 We know that that will be the end of some,
27:45 but He is still at this time pleading and wowing,
27:49 and chasing all of us, so that we will not make the decision
27:54 to go-- Meet Him. That's right. Outside of that city.
27:56 He doesn't want to meet you outside of the city.
27:58 He wants you to be in the city.
28:01 And we want you to be in the city with God.
28:03 And we want to be there as well.
28:05 So with that, thank you for joining us.
28:08 Until next time, God bless.


Revised 2014-12-17