7/9/2000 6:00 PM
Jacob blesses Judah and speaks of Shiloh - Christ. The gathering of the people will be to Christ. The Bible is about Christ. Where do you stand in relation to Christ? The gathering shall be to Christ. People need to be drawn to him.
Christ had been accused of casting out devils by the power of the devil. People tried to figure out how Christ and his disciples did these miracles. The Pharisees were trying to discount Christ. The kingdom of God through Christ had come upon them. Christ used this explanation to show them what was taking place. Christ was able to take the spoils and begin to take the souls of men again for God's purpose. "He who is not with me is against me." Who are we with? This question is not referring to which GROUP you are with, but are you with Christ? If you are not with Christ, you are not on the Lord's side. Those not with Christ are scattering people. The denominations are scattering people. We are to gather men to Christ - not to a group. The gathering must be with Christ.
Christ spoke to them about his death and the work that he was to do. By Christ's death, he brought forth much fruit. He gave his life that others could be made like him. We ought to follow him. He was at the hour when he would give his life to deliver us from the power of sin. The prince of the world has been cast out. The "lifting up" was not a lifting up in honor, but when Christ gave his life it was the means by which all men would be drawn to him. The devil is defeated because Christ went to the cross. Christ was the stronger one that came to defeat the one that would cast men down. Christs purpose is that men be drawn to him. Christ is the one that makes them a part of his church. They must be drawn to Christ. The organization is not significant, but that people be drawn to Christ. Without Christ it is of no benefit to bring a crowd of people together in worship. This is not an intellectual exercise, but a personal experience with Christ. The Christian Scientists have been advertising their book on the radio in place of the Bible, but we need to advertise the Bible to others. We need to show people that Jesus delivers from sin. God will make you a part of his temple through Jesus. People need to hear this. The real issue is Jesus and where you stand with him. Has he delivered you from sin and given you power over it, or are you still in your sins?
1 Corinthians 2:1-2
Paul had one message: Jesus. These ones didn't need to hear about the intricacies of the law. Jesus was the one that could make a difference in their lives. Paul knew personally that the law did not save, but that Jesus did. The world needs to know about Jesus and him crucified and the power he has to set us free from sin. Christ has made plenty of room for all. If we try to include everyone without Christ we will have a conglomerate mess. Christ died for all, homosexuals included, and there is a place for them in his church.... but NOT in their sins. There is NO place for sin in Christ's church.
The proselyte was not like a natural born Jew. There was a limit to the extent they could participate in the Jewish religion. God had a better plan. To those without children God promised something better than the continuation of the family name. He will give them an everlasting name in the book of life. "The house of the Lord shall be called the house of prayer for ALL people." The altar of God is open for ALL people. He promised to gather others. We are not interested in building a literal temple. In the gospel day the temple is in the heart of man. Everyone that comes to God becomes a part of his holy temple. Jesus is the message that needs to be preached.
Christ speaks of his gathering. In Isaiah it spoke of the stranger being gathered in. Through Christ all are invited to come to the one God. Christ came for both the Jews and Gentiles. People need to hear Christ's voice today. We need to be tuned in to hear what he has to say. We need to present the "Thus saith the Lord" to people today. The gathering of Christ brings the unity of his people in one fold and he is the one shepherd. Have you come to Christ? There is NO other name whereby men can be saved. The church is the natural result of people coming to Christ. The church isn't being built if people aren't finding Christ. When we are gathered to Christ there will be one fold and one shepherd.
2 Thessalonians 2:1, 2
"...and by our gathering together unto him..." As we endeavor to bring the gospel to others, we want them to find Christ, to know the power of the devil has been broken and they can be free from sin. Christ has provided that all mankind can be saved and know him and he will give them the strength and grace to serve him.