Things in common???

These three houses have something in common.  You may not see it (probably won't at all) but I do. One is for public use (picture of the Valley Falls library), one is the smallest house I have ever seen (100 square foot) and one is in the middle of a river (guess they don't need a doorbell). Two are made of wood and one of stone and obviously they are of different sizes, shapes and construction materials.  Figured it out yet?  Here is a clue- they all relate to us all individually.  They represent something.  Read on to see how they do....

1 Peter, Chapter 2

  1 Putting away therefore all wickedness, all deceit, hypocrisies, envies, and all evil speaking,  2 as newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the Word, that with it you may grow,  3 if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious:  4 coming to him, a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God, precious.  5 You also, as living stones, are built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.  6 Because it is contained in Scripture, 

“Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, chosen, and precious:
He who believes in him will not be disappointed.”

  7  For you who believe therefore is the honor, but for those who are disobedient, 
“The stone which the builders rejected,
has become the chief cornerstone,”

  8  and, 
“a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense.”

For they stumble at the word, being disobedient, to which also they were appointed.  9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, that you may proclaim the excellence of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:  10 who in time past were no people, but now are God’s people, who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. 

We all live in our own little world, surrounded by skin. Its our house.  Its where we live, think, move and do all the things human beings do.  Peter likens us to living stones and those stones are found on the ROCK which is THE CHRIST!!!  Collectively, we make up the church, which is the body of Christ and spiritually we become one.  To many outside the church, this is nonsense, but to those who are spiritually receptive- it just makes sense!!!  And because of this relationship with Christ and our fellow Christians, we grow and grow in godliness!!! No matter what shape, size, color or age, you are a house; a house designed by and for God, that you might proclaim his excellence.  If you can't say this-- its time for a remodel of your own dwelling by the master architect of the universe!!!  Check out the beginning blueprint-- its found it Acts, Chapter two!!!  What are you waiting for-- just do it!!!

Bible Reading, Mar. 2

Mar. 2
Exodus 12

Exo 12:1 Yahweh spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying,
Exo 12:2 "This month shall be to you the beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year to you.
Exo 12:3 Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, 'On the tenth day of this month, they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to their fathers' houses, a lamb for a household;
Exo 12:4 and if the household is too little for a lamb, then he and his neighbor next to his house shall take one according to the number of the souls; according to what everyone can eat you shall make your count for the lamb.
Exo 12:5 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male a year old. You shall take it from the sheep, or from the goats:
Exo 12:6 and you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month; and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at evening.
Exo 12:7 They shall take some of the blood, and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel, on the houses in which they shall eat it.
Exo 12:8 They shall eat the flesh in that night, roasted with fire, and unleavened bread. They shall eat it with bitter herbs.
Exo 12:9 Don't eat it raw, nor boiled at all with water, but roasted with fire; with its head, its legs and its inner parts.
Exo 12:10 You shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; but that which remains of it until the morning you shall burn with fire.
Exo 12:11 This is how you shall eat it: with your waist girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste: it is Yahweh's Passover.
Exo 12:12 For I will go through the land of Egypt in that night, and will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and animal. Against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am Yahweh.
Exo 12:13 The blood shall be to you for a token on the houses where you are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and there shall no plague be on you to destroy you, when I strike the land of Egypt.
Exo 12:14 This day shall be to you for a memorial, and you shall keep it a feast to Yahweh: throughout your generations you shall keep it a feast by an ordinance forever.
Exo 12:15 " 'Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread; even the first day you shall put away yeast out of your houses, for whoever eats leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel.
Exo 12:16 In the first day there shall be to you a holy convocation, and in the seventh day a holy convocation; no manner of work shall be done in them, except that which every man must eat, that only may be done by you.
Exo 12:17 You shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this same day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations by an ordinance forever.
Exo 12:18 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty first day of the month at evening.
Exo 12:19 Seven days shall there be no yeast found in your houses, for whoever eats that which is leavened, that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a foreigner, or one who is born in the land.
Exo 12:20 You shall eat nothing leavened. In all your habitations you shall eat unleavened bread.' "
Exo 12:21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said to them, "Draw out, and take lambs according to your families, and kill the Passover.
Exo 12:22 You shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and strike the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin; and none of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning.
Exo 12:23 For Yahweh will pass through to strike the Egyptians; and when he sees the blood on the lintel, and on the two doorposts, Yahweh will pass over the door, and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to strike you.
Exo 12:24 You shall observe this thing for an ordinance to you and to your sons forever.
Exo 12:25 It shall happen when you have come to the land which Yahweh will give you, according as he has promised, that you shall keep this service.
Exo 12:26 It will happen, when your children ask you, 'What do you mean by this service?'
Exo 12:27 that you shall say, 'It is the sacrifice of Yahweh's Passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he struck the Egyptians, and spared our houses.' " The people bowed their heads and worshiped.
Exo 12:28 The children of Israel went and did so; as Yahweh had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.
Exo 12:29 It happened at midnight, that Yahweh struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of livestock.
Exo 12:30 Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead.
Exo 12:31 He called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, "Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the children of Israel; and go, serve Yahweh, as you have said!
Exo 12:32 Take both your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone; and bless me also!"
Exo 12:33 The Egyptians were urgent with the people, to send them out of the land in haste, for they said, "We are all dead men."
Exo 12:34 The people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneading troughs being bound up in their clothes on their shoulders.
Exo 12:35 The children of Israel did according to the word of Moses; and they asked of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and clothing.
Exo 12:36 Yahweh gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they let them have what they asked. They despoiled the Egyptians.
Exo 12:37 The children of Israel traveled from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand on foot who were men, besides children.
Exo 12:38 A mixed multitude went up also with them, with flocks, herds, and even very much livestock.
Exo 12:39 They baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought forth out of Egypt; for it wasn't leavened, because they were thrust out of Egypt, and couldn't wait, neither had they prepared for themselves any food.
Exo 12:40 Now the time that the children of Israel lived in Egypt was four hundred thirty years.
Exo 12:41 It happened at the end of four hundred thirty years, even the same day it happened, that all the armies of Yahweh went out from the land of Egypt.
Exo 12:42 It is a night to be much observed to Yahweh for bringing them out from the land of Egypt. This is that night of Yahweh, to be much observed of all the children of Israel throughout their generations.
Exo 12:43 Yahweh said to Moses and Aaron, "This is the ordinance of the Passover. There shall no foreigner eat of it,
Exo 12:44 but every man's servant who is bought for money, when you have circumcised him, then shall he eat of it.
Exo 12:45 A foreigner and a hired servant shall not eat of it.
Exo 12:46 In one house shall it be eaten; you shall not carry forth anything of the flesh abroad out of the house; neither shall you break a bone of it.
Exo 12:47 All the congregation of Israel shall keep it.
Exo 12:48 When a stranger shall live as a foreigner with you, and will keep the Passover to Yahweh, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as one who is born in the land: but no uncircumcised person shall eat of it.
Exo 12:49 One law shall be to him who is born at home, and to the stranger who lives as a foreigner among you."
Exo 12:50 All the children of Israel did so. As Yahweh commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.
Exo 12:51 It happened the same day, that Yahweh brought the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their armies.

An open Bible Study, by Gary V. Womack



2 Jn. 9-11 We have a responsibility to believe and live by the teaching (doctrine) of God's word. We are to reject that which is false teaching. Therefore, as the teacher, I have a responsibility to teach only what the scriptures teach. As the student, you have a responsibility to question anything that is not according to truth and to refuse to accept any error. In order to do this, it is necessary for us to understand what truth is.

Deut. 29:29 The Lord has given us what He wants us to know. However, He hasn't given us everything there is to know. Those things that He has chosen not to reveal to us are the "Secret things of God". We are to honor the silence of God by not adding to or filling in where He has kept silent. This does not give us license to bind our opinions. In this study, we will see what God has said - not man.

An outline has been provided for each lesson in this series. These outlines are intended for your own personal follow-up study to insure that we have not taken any scripture out of context or misrepresented the truth in any way. You are encouraged to review each lesson on your own after we have studied together. Write down any questions that you have so we can consider them at the next study.


Acts 17:10-11 The Bereans are an example of a proper attitude in desiring to know the truth by comparing what is been taught to what God's word says.


It is possible to "twist" the scriptures and make them teach what ever you want them to teach.

2 Pet. 3:14-18 To avoid being led into error, it is important to be diligent in your study of God's word to insure that you understand the truth of His word.

If a newspaper reporter interviewed you and then reported one statement that you made without mention of any of the rest of what you said taking
it out of context), he would be misrepresenting you. His "slant" on the news would not be a true representation of the facts. He could not be credited with reporting the truth but could be guilty of slander and be subject to libel. This is why we must take care to not misrepresent what God has said on any matter. Therefore, when studying God's word, consider the context by reading before and after the verses that are under consideration. Remember, the scriptures can be made to teach error if not understood in the proper context. Consider this example:

Psm. 14:1 "...there is no God..." before, it says, "The fool has said in his heart..." After, it says, "...they are corrupt." Without reading in context, it
would be teaching atheism.


God knows what He meant when He spoke. (He said what He meant, and He meant what He said) We must understand what He has said and not assume what He has said. In other words, in an effort to interpret what He said, we may become guilty of misrepresenting what He meant. Consider this example:

Jn. 21:18-23 When Jesus spoke to Peter while others were listening, what He said was later misrepresented. Compare what He said in vs. 22 (first sentence) and how they interpreted it in vs. 23 (next sentence). Now, look at the last sentence in vs. 23 where Jesus' statement is repeated word-for-word, but notice the emphasis on the word "will"
when He said, "If I will that he remain..." Do you see how failing to consider one word changed the understanding of what He said? False doctrine was spread because what they heard was not what
Jesus meant.


Having purpose in life and knowing how to live life to our fullest potential demands that we understand that God, as our Creator, knows best the things that make for a happy and fulfilling life now, and a glorious eternal life beyond this one. God is the source of that wisdom.

Psm. 111:10 The beginning of wisdom is in fearing (honoring) God, understanding His word and obeying what He has commanded.

Col. 2:8 Beware of human wisdom as opposed to the wisdom found in God's word.
Prov. 4:7 The wisdom of Solomon tells us that the main thing in life is to gain
wisdom and understanding.

Eccl. 1:13 Solomon set out to get wisdom and know what life is all about.

Eccl. 12:13 After his search, his conclusion was that we honor (fear) God and obey
what He has commanded us.


THIS STUDY IS INTENDED FOR EVERYONE. Because everyone has a different level of understanding and background in their knowledge of the bible, this study is conducted in the same way with everyone. Therefore, please do not be offended if some of the material seems too simple. It is not an insinuation that you don't know anything about the bible. It is my purpose to insure that everyone come to an accurate understanding of God's word. Repetition of what
you already know is beneficial to retention and often results in something new learned. Let's enjoy in sharing what we know and learn.

WHAT THIS STUDY IS NOT. This study is not a product of what a particular "church" has determined to be their "doctrine." It must be understood (and this will be part of our study in a future lesson) that the church has no legislative authorityOn the contrary, the church is subject to God's word as its only authority.

THE PURPOSE OF THIS STUDY. The purpose of this study is to help you to come to a fuller understanding of God's word, so that your faith is YOUR faith and not someone else's. If you only believe what someone has taught you without searching out the truth on your own in order to fully understand it, you allow someone else to determine what you believe for you (Remember the Bereans). If you apply yourself to this study, you will have a good working knowledge of God's word; of how it "fits together," how it is properly applied to us, and how to live & confidently teach others the truth of God's word.

DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS! There are no dumb questions when asked in sincerity with a desire to learn. Don't be afraid that someone will think less of you because you feel a need to ask a question. The question you fail to
ask is probably the same question someone else is wanting to ask but is afraid to ask. If no one asks, no one learns the answer. So, ask questions !

I will make a sincere effort to answer your questions. If I cannot answer it when asked, I will write your question down and try to find the answer in God's word. When I have found the answer, I will share it with you and show you where I found it. If I am unsuccessful I will tell you that I don't know the answer. Fair?

However, I may not answer every questions when you ask it. Experience has taught that some questions can be answered too soon, before sufficient background has been studied in order to fully understand the answer correctly.
Most questions are answered at some point in this study. No sincere question will be avoided. Truth has nothing to hide.


Finally, thank you for the privilege of sharing in this study with you. There is no more worthwhile endeavor than to learn of God and to commune with Him in study and prayer.

Do not go any further without reading & completing this page

Before continuing this bible study, it is very important that you answer the following questions. When you do so, make sure that you think very carefully before writing your answers so that you are accurately
recounting what you did or believed at the time that you "obeyed" that which you had been taught. Also, it is important that you be specific when telling what you did. For example, were you baptized, and if so, tell
exactly how it was done (Were you put under water, had water sprinkled or poured on you, etc.) Also, it is important that you tell why you did what you did. (For example, were you baptized because you had asked
Christ to come into your heart and therefore believed that you were saved at that point and was baptized as an outward  demonstration of an inward faith.) It would be good to tell how old you were when this happened and, if you didn't really understand why it was done the way it was, say so in your answer. In answering the second question, it is important that you answer it according to what your understanding was at the time that you did it or experienced it. For example, was your understanding that your sins were removed at the moment you "said something, or was it at the moment you prayed to God, or was it at the moment something was done (such as baptism). In most cases, there may have been a number of things that were done or that happened, but you must be specific in telling exactly what act or at what point you believed your sins were removed.
These are not trick questions. They are not intended for anyone's benefit but yours. Experience has shown that after having
studied the scriptures in regard to salvation, our relationship to God, and the church, it is not uncommon for people to have difficulty remembering exactly what they believed previously or why they responded as they did to what they were previously taught. The reason these questions are being asked at the beginning of this study is to help you to avoid that problem. Upon completing this study, you may wish to look back at your answers and compare them to what you have learned from the scriptures.

1. What did I do to have my sins forgiven ? ___________________



2. At exactly what point were my sins forgiven ?______________





Who is God? What is He like? Prepare to stretch your mind as we learn about the God of Heaven. Our study about Heaven and Hell should have prepared us for this part of our study. Lesson one was a sobering look at eternity's dwelling places. We will be no less impressed by the God before whom everyone will stand and hear which of those two places they have chosen for themselves. Get ready to be impressed!

Getting To Know God

Psm. 90:1-2 God is eternal, having no beginning and no end. When you think of eternity, what do you normally think about?

Isa. 40:12-26 Isaiah gives us an insight to the greatness of God. As creator of all things, He is all-powerful and all-knowing. Man's effort to depict God
in carved images is foolishness because He cannot be compared to any created thing. To worship any other, whether created or imagined, is idolatry. Our brief existence on earth is dependent on the one true God.

NOTE: "Circle of the earth" - Isaiah recorded a scientific fact about the earth over 700 years before Christ and hundreds of years before science gave evidence to this fact. This is evidence of God's authorship of the bible.

Psm. 139:1-ff God, who sees and knows all, knows us intimately. There is no place that we can escape His watchful eye. This can be a great comfort to
us as it was to the writer, David, knowing that He is ever mindful of us. On the other hand, it can be discomforting to know that we cannot hide sin from His view.

Heb. 4:13 "And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account."

Acts 17:22-31 Here, we find Paul ready to reveal the one true God to some "religious" people who were ignorantly worshipping what they perceived God to be. To them, this was the "unknown God." Paul warns that we are responsible to know who this God is, and to submit to Him by repenting (changing our allegiance). Our motivation for this choice is the fact that God has appointed a day of judgment. We can be certain of this because God has raised the One who is to be our Judge from the dead; Jesus Christ.

NOTE - In vs. 29 Paul refers to God as "the Divine Nature." [theios] = "Godhead."

2 Cor. 13:5 The purpose for our study is to help us to examine and prove ourselves to see whether we are in the faith.

Unerstanding The Nature Of God

Jn. 4:24 God is Spirit.

Lk. 24:36-39 After Jesus was raised from the dead He had to convince His disciples that He was not like a Spirit, but had flesh and bones.

Rom. 1:20 God [theos] is referred to in regard to His "Godhead" (Divinity) [theiotes]

NOTE - The word "Godhead" may be better understood as Godhood (The condition of being Divine). Compare this to the condition of "parenthood" where a mother and father are parents.

1 Jn. 5:7 The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are One (in agreement, purpose and in their Divine Nature as the Godhead.)

Mt. 3:16-17 On the occasion of Jesus' baptism, we find all three Persons of the Godhead present.

Mt. 28:19 Jesus commanded His apostles to baptize "in the name of the Father
and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Their authority is One.

Jn. 20:17 The Father is God (theos).

Heb. 1:8 The Son is God (theos).

Acts 5:3-4 The Holy Spirit is God (theos)
Jn. 1:1-5, 14 Using the same words that Gen. 1:1 starts with, the writer says that, "In the beginning" (before the creation), the Word existed and the Word is God. In verse 14 we find that the Word became flesh andwalked (lived) among us. This refers to none other than Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ is the central Person in the bible. The Old Testament looked forward to His coming, and the New Testament looks back at His having come with a view to His return. This is the theme of the bible.



Understanding the ways of God

Isa. 55:8-9 His ways are higher than our ways, not the same as our ways. Therefore, as we continue in this study, you may encounter some truths that seem foreign to your way of thinking. This is not uncommon. Remember, He is God, the Creator - we are man, the created. This study will require an open mind and an honest heart.

Jer. 10:23 We are not capable of directing our own way in life without His leading. Because this is so, God's word demands our humility to accept this
fact, our confidence to believe what He has spoken, and our trust in Him to follow the directing of His word.

Prov. 14:12 We must beware of a way that may seem right, but that leads to the wrong destination and our eternal loss. Therefore, we must demand the truth of God's word and be certain that we understand it.

Gal. 1:6-10 God's word can be perverted (twisted) to make it teach whatever man wants it to teach. Therefore, we must be cautious not to accept anything in addition to, or different than what God has revealed in His word, not even if it were to come from an angel. No matter who the messenger is, put your trust in His word, not in men (or angels).

2 Tim. 2:15 We are to be "rightly dividing the word of truth;" [ "handling aright the word of truth."(arv)] To command this is to imply that it can be mishandled. We must be cautious to honor the revelation of truth.

The standard of truth

Jn. 17:17 Jesus declared God's word to be truth.


Some say that truth is relative, that truth is what you perceive it to be, that what is truth to one is not necessarily truth to another. However, what you or I think does not change the truth.
Illustration: I may think 2 + 2 = 4, someone else may think it equals 3, another 5, another 6.
One says, "but I was taught that 2 + 2 = 3 Another says, "We have always believed 2 + 2 = 5
The other one says, "I feel that 2+ 2 = 6 and I wouldn't trade the feeling I have inside for a stack of math books." Is the answer 4 because I believe it is 4, or do I believe it is 4 because it is the truth?

We can understand the truth and agree on it, because it is truth. If we disagree, one or both of us are in error.

Amos 3:3 "Can two walk together unless they are agreed?"

1 Cor. 1:10-13 The result of following men rather than God's word = division.

How did we get God's word?
Gal. 1:11-12 The gospel did not originate with man. If you read vss. 13-24 you will hear Paul explaining how he had not had opportunity to confer with any of the apostles in order to learn from them what he had preached to others after his conversion. He had not needed to be taught the truth because it had been given to him through revelation by the Holy Spirit. (Also read Eph. 3:1-7 where Paul speaks of this revelation from God that he had received and we can understand.)

2 Tim. 3:16-17 God is the author of the scriptures. Inspiration = "God-breathed"

NOTE - The bible was written by the hand of 40 different men over a period of over 1500 years. It should be considered that these men were unable to communicate with one another to "compare notes" in order to avoid any inconsistencies. However, the bible is without contradiction and is harmonious throughout. This could only be possible due to the fact that one mind authored what all of these men wrote. That one mind is the God of heaven.

2 Pet. 1:20-21 The means by which God used to reveal His will to man was through the Holy Spirit, who directed chosen men as to what to speak.

1 Cor. 2:1-ff The Holy Spirit, Who knows the mind of God (Yahweh), has done the work of revealing His word to us. Paul is an example of one of those men who, through the Holy Spirit, preached God's word. What he preached was not according to man's wisdom but was the wisdom from God. Therefore, we can trust them to be accurate and true. But
to understand the things revealed from God, we must view them with a proper attitude. Our aim in this study is to present the truth in the way Paul did; speaking only that which has been revealed and without injecting man's wisdom. In this way we can understand the truth and know the mind of Christ.

2 Pet. 1:3 God has given us all things that we need to know about life in order to live it according to His purpose. If we have received all things that pertain to life and godliness, then we are not to expect any more revelation from God. In short, we have the complete revelation of God. Anything else would be more, less or the same.

Illustration: If I take everything out of my pocket and give it to you, how much do I have left in my pocket to give? In this way, we have received all that God intends to reveal. Remember Gal. 1:8.

God's ways are higher than our ways because He is God. Understanding this, we ought not to think it strange that our way of thinking often differs from His. That being the case, it is no wonder that we are unable to direct our own way through life without His direction. This demands a level of trust on our part, as well as a great deal of caution. Considering the fact that the same word of truth can be twisted to teach whatever men desire it to teach, we must be watchful to not be deceived by such error. We must acknowledge that God's word is the standard by which we will be judged, therefore it is imperative that we recognize that truth is absolute and any effort to misuse it can lead to our eternal destruction. We can be confident that we are capable of understanding His word and being in agreement with others who properly use it. Also, we can be assured that God is the author of the bible;
that when we read it, He is speaking to us through the words that the Holy Spirit delivered through the instrumentality of chosen men who faithfully recorded it for all time. It is truth, it is complete, it is sufficient, it is the final message from God to all mankind.



Six Days of Creation

In the creation account it is important to notice the logical sequence in which things were created. With each subsequent day of creation, the previous day's work was built upon in God's plan to create man - the focus and crown of all of God's creation.

Gen. 1:1-5 Day 1 - Heavens created (This represented the creation of a physical realm within which all created things would have their existance. Within this realm of the "heavens", time and space, which are measurable entities, came into existance.)

NOTE - It is important to keep in mind that God is eternal and preexisted all of creation. Prior to the creation of this physical realm that we call the universe, the spiritual existance of Deity, Heaven and all of the heavenly beings were forever in existance. The creation of the physical realm and its brief period of existance is but a passing moment in the backdrop of eternity. This entire realm of time and space that is contained within the realm of the heavens will come to an end as quickly as it began. See Rev. 20:11. As John witnessed the vision of things to come at the scene of the judgment of God, he saw that "the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. In short, the physical realm ceased to exist as it was before the creation.

Earth created (Covered with water and the only heavenly body in existance until the fourth day of creation.)

NOTE - The Big Bang theory postulates that the universe was formed by the explosion of matter which flung debris into space which became stars and planets in their various orbits. They conclude this idea because of the discovery that the universe is expanding from a central point. While the theory is without scientific proof, it does give evidence to the fact that the point from which the universe is expanding is measurable from the location of the universe where the earth is placed. It is reasonable to understand that the Earth was formed three days before the rest of the heavenly bodies of the universe was formed and is therefore the center of the universe. The Earth would become the focal point of every important activity in the universe because it was prepared as the physical dwelling place of man.
Light created (day & night)

NOTE - Light was created in the absence of the Sun, the stars or the reflected light of the moon because they were not created until the fourth day of creation. We understand that visible light is a form of energy that makes up just a small part of the electromagnetic field. This energy field is made up of the entire spectrum of energy that includes radio waves, infrared light, visible light, ultraviolet light, X-rays, and gamma rays. All of these are measurable in wave lengths on the angstrom scale. An illustration of the difference between sound waves
(or radio waves) and light waves is seen when you watch a baseball game from high in the stands and see the batter swing and the bat make contact with the ball, but you do not hear the crack of the bat until the ball is already rising into the air. This is because light travels much faster than sound - so we see it before we hear it. Both light and sound are
measurable based on frequency. In the case of light, varying frequencies determine the variations in color. Therefore, God created light that does not depend on an external force such as the sun - with the ability to produce color. This was part of the logical sequence in which God made the universe.
In order for the sun and stars to emit their light - light had to be made first.

Gen. 1:6-8 Day 2 - Sky created (Firmament = expanse, called heaven)
This expanse of sky was formed by a dividing of the surface water from water suspended above the earth. The space in between became sky.

Gen. 1:9-13 Day 3 - Seas created (This was done by separating surface water from the exposure of land. Plant life was created.

Gen. 1:14-19 Day 4 - Sun, moon & Stars created. God established the measurement of time (seasons, days & years) for the benefit of mankind. Because we live in a physical, finite world, there is a need for time measurements of the limits of our existence.
As previously noted, the light emitted or reflected by these heavenly bodies was already in existance from day one. This is admittedly a challenge to our thinking due to our limited understanding of the nature of light.

NOTE - Each "day" was a "morning and an evening" which identifies a 24-hour day. God's creative power did not limit Him to millions of years to accomplish His work.

Gen. 1:20-23 Day 5 - Birds & Sea animals created.

Gen. 1:24-31 Day 6 - Land animals & man. Only man was made in the image of God (having an eternal spirit) In Paul's explanation of the form
that we will take on at death, he pointed out that we have a physical body and a spiritual body. (See 1 Cor. 15:42-29)

NOTE - It should be noted that the account of the creation of man is separate from that of the creation of animal life. There is good reason for this because man was created uniqely different from animal life in that man was created in the image of God who is a spirit. Unlike animal life, man is a spiritual being clothed in a physical body. See 1 Cor. 15:35-49 where Paul plainly points out that man is both physical and spiritual. Also notice that he distinguishes the physical nature of man from the flesh of animals, fish and birds. Also he points out how we will acquire a new body that is suited for the spiritual realm that we will enter after physical death.

Gen. 2:1-3b Day 7 - God rested from His work of creation.

Some Things of Special Note

NOTICE on days 3, 5 & 6, all living things were to reproduce "after their own kind." This was according to God's design, and it defies the evolutionary theory of life evolving from one "kind" to another. We find here no evolutionary "crossing of kinds." It is only because of God's distinct design work that we can depend on getting watermelons when we plant watermelon seeds and not grapes; that we can
depend on cats not giving birth to dogs, and monkeys giving birth to humans.

NOTICE on a typical evolutionary chart that lower life, beginning from the seas, show life evolving to amphibians, then to lower (small) mammals and birds, next comes the more complex mammals, and then man. COMPARE this to the order of God's creation:

Evolutionary theory God's creative order
Aquatic life (Simple one celled) Fish & other complex aquatic life All aquatic life & birds (Day 5)
Amphibians Lower (small) mammals Land animals (including mammals) & man Birds (Day 6)
Complex mammals Man

A Closer Look at Man, Woman & Marriage

Gen. 2:4-7 This is the history of God's creation of man and the preparation God made for putting him on earth. He formed man from the dust of the

Gen. 2:8-9 God provided a place for the man to live called Eden. (Verses 10-14 describe this beautiful place as a garden.)

Gen. 2:18-24 Eve was the last creative act of God. Notice that unlike the man whom He had created from the dust of the ground and breathed into his
nostrils the breath of life, God created the woman from a rib taken out of the side of the man.

Also notice that God established the institution of marriage and here stated His law regarding its sanctity and permanence. Jesus referred to this event and the law that God, the Father, had established. (See Mt. 19:3-6). Later, this basic principal of marriage would be used to teach some important spiritual applications that we will consider later in our study.


God demonstrated His power and authority in His creation of all things. We see the order of His universe and the logical sequence in which He created all things for the benefit of man. If we consider the evidence of His creative power, we can easily put our trust in the record of His creation. In this accounting of the days of creation, we can therefore confidently affirm that God did not need millions of years to accomplish His work, but did so in "a morning and an evening." Also, we need not be deceived by the foolishness of man's thinking that we are the product of the random selection of some evolutionary process (or that removes God from the picture). Nor should we be intimidated by the supposed knowledge of highly educated men of science. Notice what Paul wrote in:

1 Cor. 1:25 & 3:18-20 Man's wisdom is foolishness when compared to God's.

Rom. 11:33-36 In short, man is not as smart as he thinks he is.

Finally, we have learned that man is the crowning achievement of God's creative work, that woman is a unique creation, and marriage is of God's arrangement for them both.



Before sin entered the world

Eph. 3:11-12 Before God created man, He had a plan to redeem man, knowing that man (having a free will to choose) would fall into sin. According to His eternal plan, God made provision for this according to His purpose which included Jesus Christ as the redeemer.

Eph. 1:4-5 Before God created the world, He already had chosen that those whom He would adopt as His own would have to be holy and blameless in their love for Him. But how was He able to do this?

Isa. 46:9-10 He has all knowledge, knowing and declaring the end from the beginning. Why did God choose to make man, knowing that man would sin? He made man for His own pleasure. (See Phil. 2:12-13)

Gen. 2:15-17 The first choice was given to man by denying him the right to eat of "the tree of the knowledge of good and evil." (The kind of tree is not
the point of this message. The denying of this particular tree made this tree a tree that would cause man to distinguish between good [obedience] and evil [disobedience] if he chose his will over God's.) 

Gen. 3:1-13 Notice that Satan did not deny that God told them not to eat of that tree, but he denied that they would die if they ate it (cf 2:17). He deceived Eve by twisting the truth.

Rom. 4:15 Paul pointed out that "where there is no law, there is no sin."

1 Jn. 3:4 Sin is described as "lawlessness" - a refusal to obey law.

Isa. 59:1-2 Sin is what separates us from God (breaks fellowship with God).

Jas. 2:26 This "separation" of man from God is spiritual death. (As physical death is the "separation" of the body from the spirit.)

Ezek. 18:20 Sin is not "inherited" or "handed down" from generation to generation. Each person who sins (which includes everyone. Remember Rom. 3:23) is accountable for their own sin.

Rom 14:10-12 "We shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ" and "each of us shall give account of himself to God."

The First Ray of Hope for Man

Gen. 3:14-15 The Seed of woman (Christ Jesus, the Messiah) would "crush" the head of Satan (a deadly blow), but in so doing, her Seed (Christ) would sustain a "bruised heel" (painful but not deadly). This is the first prophecy of hope that points to the coming of the Savior and the remedy for sin by Christ's victory over sin. We will learn in a future lesson that this prophecy was fulfilled in Christ's painful crucifixion on the cross when He overcame death and crushed Satan's power.

NOTE - The events surrounding the sin that was committed in the garden and the prophecy that it concludes with made necessary the entire             remainder of the bible. Were it not for sin committed in the garden, our bible might have been no larger than the first few pages leading up to this point.



After Adam & Eve's sin in the garden of Eden, the rest of the bible is devoted to the unfolding of God's plan to restore the lost relationship between God and man, the fulfillment of that plan, and the results of it's completion. It is the story of God's grace and our access to Him through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. As we ended the previous lesson, the first
ray of hope was revealed in God's giving of the first of many prophecies regarding the coming of His Son, the Messiah. Notice in the chart, that there are 3 epochs in the history of man. As we begin this journey through time, we find that God spoke directly to the heads of families ( or patriarchs). During this period of time, the theme of the bible is "Christ is coming." The only hope for mankind's redemption begins here and continues through a
long history of many generations. In this lesson we will look at some of the key figures in the unfolding of God's plan. As we do, we will refer to the New Testament, specifically to Hebrews 11, where these same characters are portrayed as men of faith.

Heb. 1:1-2 Here we have a thumbnail synopsis of God's revelation to mankind.

Cain & Abel

Gen. 4:1-8 Cain & Abel's conflict was one of jealousy over worship. This resulted in the first murder.

Heb. 11:1-4 Notice that Abel's worship was by obedient faith.

Notice - God declared him righteous.

"Righteousness" - [dikaiosune] "Whatever is right. Whatever conforms to the revealed will of God." (God's word being the standard of right)
Righteousness is the condition resulting from obedience to God

Jas. 2:14-21 Faith involves more than just belief, but is the confirmation of that belief in the action of obedience.

Notice - (vs. 18) This verse demonstrates how the claim to have faith only is an empty claim because it does not demonstrate by example an obedient faith.

Rom. 10:17 We know that God must have told Cain & Abel how to offer acceptable worship, because Abel's worship was by faith, and from this passage we find that faith depends upon hearing God's word.
Consider - Did Cain worship God according to his own will or according to God's will?
Prov. 14:12 Remember this passage? It is a warning that we can see fulfilled in the unacceptable worship of Cain, whose worship may have seemed
to be good, and made Cain feel good, but was not accepted by the God to whom the worship was to be directed.

Gen. 6:5-8, 11-12 The wickedness of man had grown to an all-time low. Yet, in all of this wickedness, one man found grace in the eyes of the Lord.

"Grace" - Favor or approval that is unmerited (unearned).

Gen. 6:14-22 God instructed Noah how to build the ark as the means of saving himself and his family.

NOTE - God was specific in His instructions to Noah.

Consider - If God had told Noah to "make yourself an ark of wood," what kind of wood could Noah have used? Any kind of wood could have been used, But when Godspecified "gopherwood," that eliminated all other kinds of wood. This is an important principle to understand.

Gen. 7:1, 5 God allowed Noah into the ark because he had obeyed God's instructions. God recognized this obedience as righteousness.

Heb. 11:7 This obedience is described as faith.

NOTE - He was saved from the flood as an "heir" which is conditional upon the "righteousness which is according to faith."

Consider - Who were the only people saved from the flood? Only those who believed and obeyed.

Were they saved by grace? Yes. God provided the instructions for their salvation.

Were they saved by faith? Yes. Their obedience to God's offer of grace was in conformity to God's plan to save them.

Were they saved by faith onlyNo. If God had not given them warning of the coming destruction and instructions on how to be saved from it, they would have had no source upon which to have faith. When they acted upon God's warning, they had nothing to boast of in their faithful obedience. It was ultimately God's grace that made their faith possible.

Jas. 2:14-21 Remember this passage? It applies here also.

Lessons we can learn from Noah's example

Eph. 2:4-10 There are some parallels seen in the saving of Noah's family within the ark and the salvation of mankind in Christ as Paul explains in this passage. Later, in a future lesson, we will see how this relates to us in our present age.

Notice - (vs. 8) In the same way that Noah and his family were saved from the flood, the salvation of man is "by grace through (by way of) faith. Even faith is a gift because without God's warning & instruction, there can be nothing upon which to have faith, and therefore no basis upon which to act in obedience. Therefore, salvation from destruction is dependent upon righteousness righteousness is dependent upon obedience, (Rom. 5:21) obedience is dependent upon faith, (Heb. 5:9) faith is dependent upon revelation, (Eph. 2:8) revelation is dependent upon grace, (Eph. 3:2-7) grace is dependent upon God. (Tit. 2:11-12; Gal. 1:6)

Note: Noah's salvation was dependent on all of these things. To have left off any one of these, he would have been lost with the rest of the world in the flood. Therefore, He could not say that he was saved by righteousness only, or by obedience
only, or by faith only, or by revelation only, for all of these things were dependent upon God and His gift of grace.


Gen. 12:1-7 The 3-fold promise made to Abraham. (392 years after the flood)

Heb. 11:8-10 The Land promise - Abraham's faith in this promise is seen in his
obedience to God's instructions regarding it.

Heb. 11:11-12 The Nation promise - Abraham's wife demonstrates faith in this promise in her conception of the promised child in their old age.

Gal. 3:16 In this passage we are told Who the seed is that was spoken of in the first prophecy of a coming Messiah in Gen. 3:16. Here we see that
this prophecy was fulfilled.


Gen. 15:1-6 Abraham began to wonder how God would fulfill His promises.

Notice - (vss. 5 & 6) His faith was accounted as righteousness. He acted on faith.

Gen. 16:1-3, 16 Abraham was 85 year old when Sarah gave her handmaid to him in
an effort to help God to fulfill His promises. Later, we see their faith & trust in God grow as they recognize that God is all powerful.

Gen. 22:1-18 We see the faith of Abraham in offering his only son through which the promises that God had made to him could be fulfilled.

Heb. 11:17-19 This tremendous act of faith in the face of that which appeared to be a contradiction to God's purpose, shows the character of Abraham. It
shows the level of his faith to believe that God could raise his son from the dead in order to still keep His promises in spite of no prior examples of such ever having been done before. Sometimes we try to work things out for God, not realizing that He knows all and has all power to keep His will. In this account, we can also see some parallels of the coming of Christ and the sacrifice of God in sending Him to earth as a sacrifice for mankind.

Jas. 2:22-24 Abraham, in offering Isaac, acted upon his faith. His faith, working together with his work of obedience, demonstrated what perfect (complete) faith is.


Gen. 32:24-28 Jacob, later called Israel, continues this lineage of promise.

Gen. 35:23-26 Jacob begets 12 sons through which the nation of Israel comes. Through his son Judah, Christ would come into the world. Another of those sons was Joseph.


Gen. 37:3-8 Joseph was the favorite son of Jacob, and his brothers were jealous.

Gen. 37:23-28 One day when Jocob sent Joseph to check on his brothers, they sold him to some merchants going to Egypt.

Gen. 37:29-ff Notice that Jacob believed his son's deceipt & could not be comforted. He was convinced that Joseph was dead and his emotions responded in grief. The lesson for us is that we too can be deceived and be totally convinced, allowing us to trust our emotions.

Gen. 39-44 The life of Joseph is an interesting account. We find Joseph to be consistently faithful to God in his obedience to His will. And we see
(Read: how God blessed Joseph in every circumstance of his life, no matter
39:1-20 how bleak it looked at times. Through God's grace and Joseph's
40:20-23 obedience, his family was blessed and an entire nation (Israelites)
41:1, 29-31 resulted. God's hand in carrying out His plan is clearly seen in the life
41:37-44 of Joseph. He is an example we can all look up to and follow.

Gen. 45:1-10 Joseph reveals his true identity to his brothers and invites them to bring their families and their father to Egypt where he could provide & care for them. The land they moved to was Goshen.

Ex. 1:1-5 The company of Jacob and his son's family was 70 people.

Ex. 1:8-14, 22 Another Pharoah comes to power who did not know Joseph. He
put heavy burdens on the Israelites.


Ex. 2 Moses is born. (1491 BC)

Ex. 2:11-15 Moses leaves Egypt to dwell in the land of Midian. (40 years old.)

Ex. 3-4 Moses was called by God from a burning bush and told to lead
Israel out of Egyptian bondage. (80 years old.)

Ex. 12-15 After 430 years of bondage, Israel is freed from Egypt.


Acts 7:1-36 A summary of history from Abraham to Moses and the Exodus as
told by Stephen.

Lesson 6


Ex. 20 God gives the 10 commandments to Moses on Mt. Sinai

Ex. 21-23 While the 10 commandments was a set of basic laws for the Israelites, many other laws were given as part of the body of that entire law.


Num. 13 12 spies sent in to spy out the land. The people disbelieve.


The remainder of Numbers is devoted to the history of the 40 years of wandering.

Josh. 21:43-ff Israel receives the promised land. All of the promises kept.
Remember Gen. 12:1-7


The next period of history includes the period of the judges . These were leaders chosen
by God to lead and make judgments regarding the laws governing His people. Samuel and his sons were the last of these judges. This period covered about 450 years. (Acts 13:20) Notice that Acts 13:16-23 gives a brief synopsis from Israels Egyptian bondageto the coming of Christ.

Judg. 2:8-19 Herein is depicted the continuous cycle of Israel's turning from God to idols, God's mercy in sending them judges to persuade them to return back to Him, and then, after returning, repeating the same unfaithfulness.


1 Sam. 8:1-ff Israel asks for a king to be like the nations around them.

1 Sam. 9-10 Saul chosen to become their first king.

1 Sam. 15:3-26 Saul fails to obey Gods specific command and is removed from his throne because of his disobedience. His disobedience was due to
his assumption that God would be pleased with his actions.

2 Sam. & 1 Chron. David becomes the second king of Israel. (Writer of the Psalms)

2 Chron. 1:7-12 Solomon, David's son, becomes the third king. Notice his purity of heart as he asked God for guidance to lead His people. While he did
not ask anything for himself, God gave him wisdom & wealth also. (Solomon is the writer of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes & Song of Solomon)
The period covering these three kings is 120 years.


Northern kingdom - Israel (10 tribes) lasted 200 + years. Destroyed by Assyrians
in 721 BC.

1 Kgs. 12:20 Jeroboam was made king.

1 Kgs. 12:25-33 Jeroboam's presumptuous sin of devising his own system of worship results in the fall of the northern kingdom.

2 Kgs. 17:1-18 God destroyed this northern kingdom by using the Assyrians. They would never again be a nation of people. Only Judah remained.

Southern kingdom - Judah (2 tribes, Judah & Benjamin) beginning under the rule of king Rehoboam (Solomon's son) lasted 300+ years. Destroyed by the Babylonians in 600 BC.

2 Kgs. 24:18 - 25:10 God used the Babylonians to destroy Jerusalem and to take captive the people of Judah.

During this period of the divided kingdom, God sent many prophets to the people to warn them of certain destruction, urging them to repent and turn back to Him. But their continual refusal ended in their demise. As we will see in the next lesson, a remnant would return to Jerusalem out of Babylonian captivity to rebuild the temple, the walls of the city and the city of Jerusalem once again. The books of Ezra, Nehemiah & Esther tell of these events.

Lesson 7


In 606 BC, king Nebuchadnezzar, ruler over the Babylonian Empire, besieged Jerusalem and captured some of the young men of that city to serve in his palace. Daniel, an Israelite of the tribe of Judah, was one of those young men. God blessed Daniel and used him as a prophet to interpret a dream that the king had. No one but Daniel was able to give the interpretation of the dream. As proof that Daniel was capable of telling the meaning of the dream, the king tested Daniel by not telling him the dream but requiring Daniel to tell him the details of the dream and then give the meaning of it. In this magnificent prophecy, God
revealed to Nebuchadnezzar the rising and falling of 4 great world empires that would span a history of over 1000 years. In this prophecy, God revealed what is now a matter of secular history. This revelation of prophecy counted the time, beginning from Nebuchadnezzar's dream to the time of the establishment of God's Kingdom over which
His Son, the promised Messiah, would reign forever.

Dan. 2:31-35 Daniel tells Nebuchadnezzar the details of the dream as proof of his ability to give its meaning.

Dan. 2:36-45 Daniel tells Nebuchadnezzar the meaning of the dream and the certainty of its outcome.

Dan. 2:44 Consider the significance of this verse. It tells specifically when God would establish His Kingdom on earth.

Notice - Unlike these kingdoms who were ruled by subsequent kings (see the next page) this Kingdom that God would establish would "not be left to
other people.

Notice - Unlike these kingdoms, this Kingdom "shall stand forever."

Mt. 16:18 "...the gates of Hades (the realm of the dead, or death itself, gvw) shall not prevail against it."

As Jesus said these words, He foretold that death would not be a factor in His Kingdom's existence and continuation. He was referring to the church which is the Kingdom.

Mt. 16:19 He spoke of the church, and in this verse, the Kingdom interchangeably as one and the same.

Notice - The time of His Kingdom's establishment would be during the Roman Empire. (See the next page.)

Mt. 16:13-19 Jesus said, "...I will build... future tense.

Mk. 9:1 The Kingdom would soon come in their life time.

Col. 1:13-14, 18 By 62 AD, at the time of the writing of this letter, the Kingdom was already in existence. (Notice that he referred to the Kingdom, the body & the church as one and the same thing.)

Eph. 1:19-ff Written at about the same time as the Colossian letter, we find that Paul refers to the kingdom being in existence. Christ reigns now at the right hand of the Father.

Jn. 18:36 Jesus identified His kingdom as not being of this world. His kingdom is a spiritual kingdom.

1 Cor. 15:20-28 At the end of time, when the world and everything in it is dissolved and the universe passes away, Christ will deliver the kingdom up to the Father, at which time He will put down all authority and the Father will be all in all.
Remember - When we studied in lesson 4, part 1, about Noah and the flood. God warned Noah of the coming flood. He told Noah how he and his family could escape that destruction. Noah obeyed God's instructions in building the ark. Only those who were inside the ark were saved from death.

? On the last day, where must we be if we are to escape eternal death? Inside the kingdom of God (the church).



BABYLONIAN [Chaldean] 606 -536 BC Approximately 90 years prior to the rise of this world empire (during the reign of the Assyrian empire), Isaiah foretold of the Babylonian empire (by name) and prophesied its destruction 160 years before the event, even naming the Medes as the nation that would overthrow them before the Medo-Persian empire came into existence. (Isa. 13:17- 22; 21:9) Jeremiah foretold the complete destruction of Babylon (70 years before the event). (Jer. 25:1 dates the time of this prophecy [606 BC]) (Jer. 25:11-12)

NEBUCHADNEZZAR 606 - 561 BC Carried the Jews in captivity with Daniel & Ezekiel.
NABONIDUS 555 - 536 BC

MEDO-PERSIAN 536 - 332 BC (Dan. 5:28 identified this as the 2nd. kingdom)

CYRUS 538 - 529 BC---- In Isaiah's prophecy of the destruction of Babylon 160 years before it happened, God called Cyrus by name (long before his birth) as the one who would accomplish this (Isa. 45:1-4) In the same year Cyrus defeated Babylon, he authorized the Jew's return to Jerusalem.(Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther)

DARIUS the Mede was a co-regent (sub-king) under Cyrus & ruled the lesser
CAMBYSES 529 - 522 BC empire of the Medes. GAUMATA 522 - 521 BC
DARIUS (HYSTAPIS) 521 - 486 BC was defeated at the naval battle of Marathon by the Greeks in 490 BC. He inscribed the Behistun Rock. This king is mentioned by Ezra as having permitted the temple in Jerusalem to be rebuilt. (Ezra 6:1-12)

XERXES I (AHASUERUS) 484 - 465 BC was defeated at Salamis by the Greeks in 480 BC.
ARTAXERXES I (LONGIMANUS) 464 - 424 BC permitted Ezra to go to Jerusalem to restore jewish affairs there. (Ezra 7:1-26)

400 YEARS OF SILENCE between the old and new testaments after Malachi. This period of time includes approximately the last 70 to 90 years of
the Medo-Persian Empire, all of the Greek Empire, and about the first 60 years of the Roman Empire. After 400 years of silence, God
would set up another prophet in John the Baptizer. (Lk. 3:1-6)

GREEK 331 - 31 BC (Dan. 8:3-8, 20-21 identified this as the 3rd. kingdom)
ALEXANDER THE GREAT was born 356 BC - and died 323 BC. He was was responsible for causing the Greek language to become the common language of the empire before being defeated by the Roman Empire.

ROMAN 31 BC - 476 AD

AUGUSTUS CEASAR was first emperor of Rome and was in power when Jesus was born. (Lk. 2:1 identifies him in power at Jesus' birth.)
TIBERIUS CEASAR was second emperor of Rome (Lk. 3:1 John the baptizer was active during this emperor's reign.) Many emperors reigned throughout the Roman Empire. But we can clearly see that Daniel's prophecies pointing to the coming of the Messiah during the days of the Roman empire were fulfilled exactly as God planned.
(See Mk. 1:14-15 and Mk. 9:1)

Lesson 8


In the previous lesson we looked at the prophecy sent to king Nebuchadnezzar that Daniel the prophet interpreted. In that prophecy he saw an image of a man that had a head of gold, chest and arms of silver, a belly and thighs of bronze, legs of iron, and feet of a mixture of iron and ceramic clay. Daniel identified each part as representative of kingdoms(world empires). He named the head of gold as being the Babylonian Empire.Subsequent history records that the Babylonian Empire was defeated by the Medo-Persian Empire, then followed the Greek Empire, and finally the Roman Empire.In Dan. 2:44 Daniel foretold the coming of God's eternal kingdom during the time of the
kings under the Roman Empire. In that verse he also made known that this eternal kingdom would "not be left to other people." Unlike all earthly kingdoms who would have a number of kings that would succeed one another, God's eternal kingdom would have aneternal King. This prophecy, as many before it, pointed to the coming of the long awaited Messiah. Remember the promise given by prophecy to Abraham in Gen. 12:7; "...And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed."

Gen. 3:15 Remember this first prophecy given in the garden of Eden that pointed to the first ray of hope for redeeming man from his separation from God because of sin. Notice again that the Seed of woman (Christ) would suffer a bruised heel (a painful but not fatal injury) while He would crush the serpent's (Satan's) head (a fatal blow).

Isa. 7:14 This prophecy foretells the virgin birth of Christ as a "sign" to identify this One as the Messiah, naming Him Immanuel ("God with us"). This prophecy was given about 700 years before its fulfillment.

Mt. 1:18-ff The virgin birth was explained to Joseph by an angel of the Lord.

Notice - vs. 25 Joseph did not "know" Mary "until" Jesus' birth. Unlike Catholic doctrine, Mary was not a perpetual virgin.See Mk. 6:1-4 Mary gave birth to 4 other sons and at least 2 daughters.

After this point in time, the theme of the bible changes to "Christ has come."

Isa. 9:6-7 Isaiah prophesied about 700 years before the birth of Christ of His coming and of the establishment of His everlasting kingdom.

Lk. 2:8-14 The fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy is seen in this account. Notice that it is stated that a child had been born to "you" - even as Isaiah said would be born to "us." This explains how Jesus is elsewhere often referred to as the "Son of man " because He was sent to us and was born to us.

Isa. 53:1-ff This prophecy (the single most detailed in all of scripture) foretold of the suffering of Christ. Many details of this prophecy will be clearly seen in the New Testament scriptures we will look at in this lesson. Notice from vs. 10 to the end, the perspective is from the Father's vantage point in heaven as He looks down on the sufferings of His only begotten Son.

Psm. 22:1-21 In this psalm, David reveals details of Christ's sufferings on the cross about 1000 years before that event. Notice the incredible accuracy of
detail as this prophecy unfolds itself in Matthew's account of Christ's trial and crucifixion.

Jn. 18:28 - 19:13 Christ's trial - Notice Jesus states that His kingdom is not of this world. While they were thinking "earthly kingdom," He was referring to a heavenly kingdom whose throne would be at the right hand of the Father. Later, we see the confirmation and fulfillment of this.

As we study the next portion of this account by Matthew, refer below to the prophecies as they are fulfilled in the corresponding verses of this chapter .

Mt. 27:1-ff Christ's sentencing and crucifixion - fulfillment of prophecy. Notice that those who had been responsible for His death made certain to insure that the tomb be "sealed" so His disciples not break in without detection and steal the body in order to make the claim that He had been raised from the dead.

vs. 35 .........Psm. 22:16-18 They divided Jesus' garment, casting lots for it.

vs. 38 .........Isa. 53:9, 12 Jesus died between 2 thieves.

vss. 39-44 ...Psm. 22:6-8 The crowd blasphemed & taunted Jesus.

vs. 46 .........Psm. 22:1 Jesus cries out to the Father words of anguish.

vss. 47-49 ...Psm. 22:14-15 Jesus' dry mouth is quenched with sour wine.

vs. 5 ...........Isa. 53:9 Jesus is buried in the new tomb of a rich man.

Mt. 28:1-15 Christ is risen from the dead. Notice how, after those who had been responsible for His death realized what had happened, they tried to
cover up the truth by fabricating a lie that was commonly believed.

Lk. 24:1-ff After Christ is risen from the dead, He is seen by His disciples and many others for 40 days as proof of His being raised from the dead.

Acts 1:1-14 Christ's ascension into heaven. His apostles are told to wait in the city of Jerusalem to receive the power of the Holy Spirit in order to
begin the proclamation of the gospel from that place. Compare this to Lk. 24:46-49.

Dan. 7:13-14 In this portion of a prophetic vision sent to Daniel, we see from a heavenly perspective, the ascension of Christ from earth as He comes to the Father (the Ancient of Days) to be seated at His right hand and receive dominion of His everlasting kingdom (the church). Keep in mind that this prophecy was given over 500 Years before its fulfillment.

Eph. 1:20-ff Paul writes of the power of the Father in raising the Son and seating Him at His right hand, where He now reigns over His kingdom, the church.

Notice in the unfolding of these events, not only the fulfillment of prophecy, but the fact that the establishment of the church was in God's eternal plan. The church was not an "afterthought" due to a failure of Christ to establish His kingdom, as premillenial doctrine teaches. But we have seen that Christ did notfail because He was put to death. On the contrary, He fulfilled every prophecy in allowing Himself to be crucified in order to complete God's eternal plan to redeem man from his sins. Consider this thought: If Christ had failed toaccomplish the establishment of His kingdom as was prophesied, then we could not trust any of God's prophetic word to be accurate. Also, if Christ was supposed to return to earth again to establish His kingdom, as premillenialists claim, what's to say that He wouldn't fail againReference could be made again to Dan. 2:44 as well as Isa. 9:6-7 regarding this.

Mt. 16:18-19 As Jesus proclaimed the establishment of His church, He tells Peter that, on the basis of Peter's statement of truth (that Jesus is the Christ
[anointed One] the Son of the living God) He would build (establish) His church. Then He honors Peter with the privilege of unlocking its gates by promising him the "keys of the kingdom of heaven."
In the next lesson we will see the unlocking of 
the kingdom.

Col. 1:1:13-18 Notice that when Paul wrote this letter (62 AD) the kingdom was already in existence. Paul refers to the kingdom and the church as one
and the same as Jesus did in the previous scripture that we read.

Lesson 9


As we learned in the previous lesson, Christ came to earth according to God's eternal plan to redeem man. In that plan, Christ was to die as the only suitable, perfect sacrifice for the sins of mankind. Before His death, He had promised to "build" His church, which is the "kingdom." (Mt. 16:18) We learned that His kingdom has already been established, for Paul referred to it as already being in existence in (Col. 1:13-18) (62 AD).

In Lesson 5 we learned that the law of Moses was given at Mt. Sinai 3 months after they were freed from Egyptian bondage. Consider now some of the details of that event and the law that was given at that time:

Ex. 19:6 God declared the Israelites as His "special treasure above all peoples."

Ex. 20 God spoke to the people the 10 commandments.

Ex. 21-23 God gives His ordinances (laws) to the people of Israel.

Ex. 24-31 God gives His priestly laws to the Levites regarding their service in matters
of the worship of the people, such as animal sacrifices, etc. (also Leviticus)

A Look at the Sabbath Law

Ex. 20:8-11 The Sabbath law, the 4th. law of the 10 commandments.

Deut. 5:14-15 The Sabbath day was given as a reminder of their deliverance from Egyptian bondage. (THIS ONLY APPLIED TO THE ISRAELITES)

Ex. 31:14-17 The Sabbath law was given specifically to Israel. (Notice the penalty for violating this law -Death)

Num. 15:32-36 An example of one who violated the Sabbath law. Do you suppose they had any trouble understanding the frequency of this law? The implication of the command to keep the Sabbath holy was understood to be a weekly observance.

God's Promise of a New Law

Jer. 31:31-34 God's promise of a new law is stated here about 600 years before its

Eph. 2:10-16 Paul wrote these words to Gentile christians (Remember, if you weren't a Jew, you were called a "Gentile.") Here, Paul reminds them
of how they, as a people, had not had the advantages of the Jews. (Remember, the law of Moses was only for the Jews - Gentiles were
not subject to that law.) But now they, along with the Jews, were all "made near by the blood of Christ" by virtue of the fact that the thing which once had divided the Jew from the Gentile had been removed.

"Abolished" - "To do away with." (Notice the past tense: "done" away.

Illustration - The Emancipation Proclamation abolished slavery (13th. amendment)

"Enmity" - "That which is a cause of strife or division due to disfavor. As an enemy.

Some things to consider -
What was the source of this "enmity?"
The law of Moses.

What was "abolished?"
The law of Moses.

How (or when) was this done?
"In His flesh" when Christ died on the cross.

ONE BODY (The kingdom - the church)

Col. 2:13-14 The law of Moses was taken out of the way at the cross of Christ.

"wiped out" - (blotted out) Compare to an "ink blotter"

Heb. 8:6-ff Christ is the Mediator of a better covenant with better promises.

Notice - He quotes from the prophecy of Jer. 31:31-34 that foretold of this new
law which was to come.

Notice - He refers to the fact that the law of Moses was not "faultless."

Notice - In that the law of Moses had "faults," its "weaknesses" was not a reflection on God's inability to make a "perfect" law. It was designed & purposed by God to not be perfect, but to be a prelude to the
perfect law which would come after the old law had been fulfilled (its purpose having been accomplished.)
Rom. 8:1-4 says more about this as it contrasts between the fleshly law of Moses and the spiritual law of Christ.
"Mediator" - A "go-between" as used in negotiating a contract between labor and management.

"Covenant" - A contract. In this case, a unilateral contract established by God in which He states the conditions which we, as the other party to the contract, has no authority to negotiate.

? Why was this a better covenant?  Because it has better promises.

Heb. 10:1-10 The old law was a shadow of good things to come.

Illustration - If I hold my hand in front of a light and it casts a shadow of my hand on the wall, Is the shadow the "real thing?" Is the shadow "similar?" Is it "better?" ? Since the sacrifices under the old law did not accomplish forgiveness of sins, but "reminded" them of their sins, why would we want to go back under that law?

Rom. 7:1-7 Under the new law we are delivered or discharged.

? Does a soldier who has been "discharged" from the military, salute or obey a military officer?
No. He is no longer under the authority of that officer.

Jas. 1:21-25 This new law, under which there is forgiveness of sins (unlike the old law), is called the "perfect law of liberty." It is a law of "liberty"           because under this law we are set at liberty from the bondage of the old law. We are free from the law of Moses.

Gal. 3:16-25 The old law served as a tutor or "schoolmaster" till the "Seed" (which is Christ. Remember Gen. 12:7; 22:18) to bring us to Him.

Lesson 10


In Review - Remember in Isa. 59:1-2 (Lesson 4) we pointed out that it is sin that has separated man from God. In Gen. 12:3 and Gen. 22:18 we saw the promise of God to Abraham that in His Seed all the nations of the earth would be blessed, understanding that He was referring to Christ as that seed of promise in Gal. 3:16. We learned in the previous lesson (9) that the law (Old Testament) was a temporary law specifically given to the Israelites to "bring us to Christ" as a "tutor." Gal. 3:19-25. In this divine plan for redeeming man from his sins, God solved the dilemma of remaining a just God while also being a merciful God by becoming our justifier.

Rom. 3:21-26 God is both just as well as the justifier in the sacrifice of Christ.

Heb. 2:14-ff Christ took on the form of fleshly mankind in order to pay the penalty for sin - death! Since God is an eternal spirit and cannot die, it became necessary for God, in the form of Christ, to come to earth in the flesh in order to be able to die physically and thus become the only suitable
sacrifice for sin.

Remember at the end of lesson 5 how the example of Noah and the saving of his house was a demonstration of the grace of God (see Eph. 2:4-10) (Refer to this lesson again.) In the sacrifice of Christ, Christians "have been made near by the blood of Christ"(Eph. 2:13)
His blood removes the sin that separates us from God. But how do we gain access to His blood and the forgiveness of sins? How do we receive the blessings that are "in Christ"?

Eph. 1:3-10 Notice that forgiveness of sins (which is one of many blessings) are found in Christ. This lesson and lesson 11 are devoted to
finding the answer to this question.

Jn. 14:1-7 Christ is the way - as a road that leads to heaven. In Him is truth and (eternal) life.

? How many ways does Jesus say leads to the Father and the place He has prepared?

Prov. 14:12 Remember, there is a way that seems right, but leads to destruction.

Note Many people deceive themselves, thinking they are okay, convincing themselves that God will overlook His law and let them into heaven anyway.

Mt. 7:13-14 We have a choice of following the broad, easy way or the narrow,difficult way that leads to destruction. But remember, truth is narrow.

? Would you go down a road that does not lead to your house just because it is a wide, paved road that is easier to travel than the one that does lead to your house?

? According to this passage, will the majority of people choose the road that leads to heaven?

Tit. 2:11-12 God's grace has appeared to all men. This grace is seen in His revealing of truth which teaches us how to live. This grace that has
been extended to all men is God's part in salvation.

? Does this mean that all will be saved? No. Therefore, there must be some condition upon which we are saved.

Heb. 10:26-29 Notice that we can reject His grace and forfeit His mercy.

2 Cor. 6:1 We can receive God's grace in vain - for naught.

Mt. 7:21 Heaven's reward involves more than our acknowledgment that He is Lord. There must be obedience. This obedience is our part in salvation.

Heb. 5:8-9 He is the author of eternal salvation "to all who obey Him."

? Who is salvation promised to?

Mt. 7:22-ff Jesus illustrates that obedience is not in word but in deed.

Note What may seem to be a good work can be a lawless deed. (Remember Prov. 14:12) Only good works are those done according to His will.
Remember from Lesson 6, Saul's sin and God's response. (1 Sam. 15:3-26)

Illustration - If I used your check book to write a check to a good cause (without your approval) and I signed your name to the check ("in your name"),
would I be honest in doing that - and would you be pleased? In doing that, I might claim that I did it "in your name" - but did I do it with your authority?

Rom. 6:17 God has given us a pattern (form of doctrine) to follow.

Note A form or pattern reminds us of the form that is used into which concrete is poured in order to create the desired shape we want (such as in a side walk).
Or it may remind us of a pattern that is used to cut out the fabric to make a dress according to the desired size and design. This is what God has done. He has given us the gospel as a pattern or form by which we can be molded into the design that He desires. Part of this design makes up the conditions of entrance into His kingdom as well as our behavior and attitudes as citizens in His kingdom.

? When you obey God, can you obey only from an outward expression and not from the heart? Wouldn't this be hypocrisy?

? When you obey God, must you obey Him according to His form (pattern) of teaching?

Note If the same form is always used, the resulting product will always be the same. To get something different would require a different form. Do you agree that this is true?

Lk. 8:4-15 In this parable of the sower, notice how many different kinds of soil (which represents the different conditions of heart) there were.

? In this parable, how many different kinds of seed did the sower plant?

? What did the seed represent in this parable?

Note What differed in this parable was not the seed, but men's hearts. The resulting crop did not differ because of the seed, but because of the ground it fell on. This represented the different conditions of heart that is found in those who hear the gospel.

Note The law of procreation demands that a seed produces after its own kind. This law was established by God as we saw in Lesson 3 in the account of creation. (Gen. 1) Therefore, one kind of seed can only produce one kind of plant. Making application of this same principle to the gospel as is illustrated here by seed that is planted into men's hearts, does it not follow that the gospel can only produce one thing - a christian? Therefore, the only kinds of Christians that there can be are - faithful, unfaithful, weak, strong, etc.

IN THE NEXT PART OF THIS LESSON we will build upon the thoughts that we have studied in this section. We will consider what the scriptures teach regarding this "way to heaven." As we have already learned, there is a pattern to be followed. While God's love is unconditional, we will see that salvation is not. The gift of God's Son has been offered to all who will accept it. The means of our accepting that gift are the conditions of salvation that God has provided.

Lesson 11


Hearing is Believing

The way to heaven involves that "form of doctrine" or pattern (Rom. 6:17) which are the conditions or steps that lead to God's throne. In following Jesus, who leads the way to the Father, it is essential that we hear the message of the gospel. HOW we hear is important because this has to do with our attitude toward what we hear.

Heb. 11:6 "Without faith it is impossible to please Him..." In order to come to God, it is necessary to have faith.

Rom. 10:17 Faith comes by hearing God's word. It is the source of faith in God.

Lk. 8:5-15 In this parable of the sower, notice in vss. 12-15 that where the seed (God's word) was sown, it is said that they heard. Also notice that the only ground that produced a crop represented the "noble and good heart." Even though everyone in the parable heard, not everyone bore fruit. It takes an honest heart to apply what the ear hears.

Acts 7:54-58 In Acts 6 we are introduced to a Christian named Stephen, who, because he was teaching the truth in opposition to what the Jews
believed, was brought before the Jewish high council. In Acts 7:2-53 he gave a synopsis of the biblical history from Abraham to that present time. Notice their response in vs. 54: They heard but did
not believe. Notice in vs. 57 that they stopped their ears, refusing to hear any more.

Acts 2:37 On the day of Pentecost, notice the difference in response of those who heard from those who heard the teaching of Stephen. Notice that they both were "cut to the heart " But they "gnashed on him with their teeth," however, these asked what they needed to do.

To Believe or Not to Believe, That is the Question

The next step on our way to the Father involves the positive response to having heard the gospel. If we have a "noble and good heart," the result will be belief .

Jn. 3:16 ? Is it God's will that you believe in Him?

Jas. 2:19 Notice that the demons believe, yet they are going to be cast into Hell according to Mt. 25:41.

Now read Jas. 2:14-18 and see the context in which this statement was made regarding demons that believe. Notice James' point is that faith alone
is useless. In vs. 18 he poses the question to one who believes in faith only by challenging them to demonstrate or prove their faith without the
evidence (work) to back their claim. 1Thess. 1:3 speaks of the work of faith.

Now read Jas. 2:21-24 and see the example of Abraham who demonstrated his faith by the obedient act of offering up his son Isaac. By his work of obedience "...it was accounted to him for righteousness." Notice that his being justified was conditional upon his obedience. See Heb. 11:8.

Remember - To be justified means to be pronounced righteous or be deemed right.

Rom. 5:1-2 We are justified by faith and faith gives us access to God's grace.

Jn. 8:24 ? Is it possible to go to Heaven if we refuse to believe Jesus is God's Son?

Jn. 14:15 As Jesus spoke to His apostles, He appealed to their love as the motivation to obedience.

? If you refuse to believe and obey Him, do you love Him?

I Change My Mind

After hearing and believing the truth of the gospel, the result should be a conviction of heart which motivates us to a change in our thinking, and how we view sin and our life. It also should result in a change in our allegiance to God as opposed to following our own will.

Heb. 4:12 The power of God's word is demonstrated in its ability to discern the "thoughts and intents of the heart." We can fool some people regarding our
motives, and sometimes, we may even deceive ourselves (1 Jn. 1:8), but once a noble and good (honest) heart comes in contact with the power of
God's word, we cannot fool ourselves and still be true to ourselves unless we repent. Once we know the truth, we must deal with our conscience.

Acts 2:37 On the day of Pentecost, after hearing the truth and believing its message, they were "cut to the heart ." They were convicted in heart. That conviction lead them to ask, "What shall we do."

Acts 17:30-31 As Paul taught the people of Athens regarding their false religion of idol worship, he pointed out that God once overlooked such, but now
commands us to repent. In saying this, he was calling on these people to turn away from that which was in error and turn to the truth - serving the one true God.

"Repent" - (lit.) To perceive afterwards, afterthought, therefore; a change of mind or purpose.

? Why is it important that we repent?

2 Cor. 7:9-10 Godly sorrow leads us to repent. The difference between the sorrow of the world and godly sorrow is this; When a child is caught in an act of disobedience to their parents, they may be sorry only because they "got caught" and now are suffering the consequences of what they did. This is worldly sorrow. However, if they are sorry for the fact that they disappointed their parents, this is genuine or godly sorrow. This indicates a noble and good (honest) heart. Considering the price that has been paid for our sins, we should be sorry for the sins in our life that made it necessary for Christ to die on the cross.

? Does repentance mean more than godly sorrow?

Acts 3:19 A change of mind (repent) and a resulting change in direction (convert) are conditions for the blotting out of sins. If we change our minds, our
actions should follow suit.

Eph. 4:17-5:7 Paul admonished these Christians that their conduct should now reflect allegiance to God in "putting off" their former conduct and manifesting the change of heart that had turned them to be obedient to the truth of God's word.
An acid test of true repentance

Mt. 19:3-9 Jesus taught the divine law regarding marriage. In His teaching on this subject, repentance demands not remaining in an adulterous marriage.

Ezra 10:3-4, 9-12, 44 In this account, we see the problem that resulted from the Israelites not having destroyed the people of Canaan when they moved into the land. What God had previously warned
the people before they entered the promised land had come to pass. They had intermarried among the idolatrous people of the land in violation of God's forbidding, and had been led into idolatry as a result. The solution to their problem was a need to
repent of their unauthorized marriages. It took a tremendous amount of love for God and devotion to His teaching to do what they did. They put away their wives. Notice that many of these marriages had children in them. The lesson for us is that
God's will must override even the closest of ties if they are in violation of His will.

Mt. 10:37-39 The closest of ties are not to prevent us from putting Him first.

Confession - The Statement of My Conviction

Mt. 10:32-33 The confession of our faith that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God is the acknowledgment of our faith. Jesus said that we must do this before men as a condition of His acknowledgment of us before the heavenly Father.

Mt. 7:21-23 Notice again this scene of the judgment day. Those who are unprepared are declared to be unknown by the Son. If we are unknown to Him on that day, He cannot "confess us to the Father."

Illustration - Have you ever been invited to a gathering where you didn't know anyone? That is an uncomfortable feeling. If that has ever happened
to you, you may remember how good it felt to have someone there that knew you and introduced you to others. In Lk. 12:8 the writer says that He will confess us before angels.

Rom. 10:9-10 In addition to believing that Christ, as God's Son, has been raised from the dead, our confession of that faith before men is a condition of salvation. Notice that this a verbal confession with our mouth.

Notice - The confession that God has commanded of us is not a confession of our sins, but of our faith in Christ. ? What is the condition under which Christ will acknowledge us before the heavenly Father?

? If we refuse to confess our faith in Jesus Christ as God's resurrected Son, can we be saved?
In Review

Study this review on your own in preparation for the next lesson

1 Pet. 1:3-4 Because God is merciful, He gave His Son and raised Him from the dead in order that we might have hope of an inheritance in heaven that
is reserved for those who are His own.

1 Pet. 1:10-12 He has revealed this hope through chosen men (prophets) who, as they were revealing this hope, sought to understand its meaning which
was intended for us. These are things that angels desired to look into. We are most blessed to be able to understand these things now. (Remember what we studied in Lesson 2 regarding how we have
been given God's word.)

Eph. 3:1-6 Paul spoke of this "mystery" which has been revealed. Notice that he says that we can understand what was revealed to him. Also notice
that this "mystery" had to do with the fact that Gentiles (those who are not Jews) should be "fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel." (Remember in Lesson 4 the promise given to Abraham in Gen. 12:3 and repeated in Gen. 22:18 that "in your Seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed Me." Gal. 3:16
identified that "Seed" as being Christ.

Eph. 1:7-10 The message of this hope (the forgiveness of sins "in Him"), God intended to be revealed at the right time. Until that time, it was a mystery. The result of His revealed plan is the gathering together of those who are "in Christ" into one body "in Him." (Remember what we studied in Lesson 7 about Daniel's prophecy in Dan. 2:44 - "And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed.")

Eh. 1:20-22 That one body is the church over which Christ is reigning at the Father's right hand. (Remember in Lesson 7 the promise made by Jesus in Mt. 16:18- 19 in which He promised to build His church, calling it the "kingdom.")

1 Cor. 15:20-28 As we noticed earlier in Lesson 7, at the last day, Christ will deliver up the kingdom (which is the church - the body) to the Father, who will then be "all in all" (having all authority).

Eph. 5:23 Christ is the Savior of this body (the church).

Eph. 2:16 We looked at the context of this verse in Lesson 9. Notice that it is in this "one body" that we are "reconciled to God." Therefore we must
insure that we are in that body even as Noah and his family was in the ark during the flood.

Reconciled -[Katallasso] "Properly denotes to change, exchange (especially of money); hence, of persons, to change from enmity to friendship.
(Remember what we studied in Lesson 7 in Isa. 59:1-2 about how sin separates us from God.)
Eph. 1:3 Every spiritual blessing (such as these we have looked at) has been made available to us "in Christ."

IF - we have forgiveness of sins "in Him,"
and since those who are "in Him" have been gathered together into one bodyand since Christ is the Savior of the body (the church), and since we are reconciled to God in that body, and since Christ will deliver up the kingdom (the church) on the last day,

THEN - it is absolutely essential that we be in the body (the church, the kingdom) if we expect to be forgiven of our sins, saved from eternal destruction, reconciled to God, and enter heaven with those who have been gathered together in that one body to be delivered up to God at the judgment.

Heb. 2:3-4 This message of salvation began to be preached by Christ and then (on the Pentecost after His resurrection) by His apostles.

Acts 2:47 On the day of Pentecost, when the gospel began to be preached,those who obeyed the message (pattern, remember Rom. 6:17"the Lord added to the church those who were being saved." ? Can one be saved and not be in the church?

Notice - (Remember, we are not saved by the church, but by the blood of Christ. The church [ekklesia] is made up of those who have been "called out" of the world.)

Where are you on your journey?

As we have learned so far, Jesus has demanded that the way to heaven can only be reached if we are willing to hear (understand) the gospel and believe that He is the resurrected Son of God, love Him and express that love by repenting (changing our mind) and being converted (turning from our old ways) and confessing our faith in Him as God's resurrected Son. These are the conditions that lead to entrance into His kingdom which we will look at in the next part of our study. It is important at this point in our study to understand that refusal to obey these conditions, as we have seen, will cause our sins to
remain and thus, ultimately, disallow us entrance into heaven.

When we obey God's directions

In Lk. 17:7-10, Jesus teaches a valuable lesson about obedience. When we have done what we were instructed by our master, we have nothing to boast of. We have merely done what we were supposed to do.

Illustration - If a man falls overboard into the ocean and someone throws a life preserver to him, he must take hold of the life preserver and hold onto it while he is pulled back up to the deck. When he has escaped from drowning, he would be arrogant and self-righteous to boast that he had saved himself by his own doing.

A Word About Salvation by Grace Through Faith

The previous illustration demonstrates the fact that grace (which is an unearned gift) does not demand that we have no responsibility in regard to our salvation. In lesson 10 at the top of page, we noticed that grace is God's part in the process of salvation and obedience is our part. As emphasized in the previous illustration, obedience to the God's conditions of salvation is an extension of God's grace and is not a matter of earning our salvation. Truly, after obedience to God's will, we have nothing to boast of. This is a good time to review what we learned in lesson 5 in the example of Noah's
obedience to God's forewarning of the coming flood (destruction) and His instructions for building the ark. Keep in mind that both of these things constituted God's grace - they were a free gift to Noah for the purpose of saving him and his family. But Noah had to act upon what God told him if he expected to take advantage of that gift. His doing so was not a matter of earning their salvation from death in the flood. For your convenience, I have copied that portion of lesson 5 for you to refresh your memory of what we learned about:

Lessons we can learn from Noah's example

Eph. 2:4-10 There are some parallels seen in the saving of Noah's family within the ark and the salvation of mankind in Christ as Paul explains in this passage.

Notice - (vs. 8) In the same way that Noah and his family were saved from the flood, the salvation of man is "by grace through (by way of) faith. Even faith is a gift because without God's warning & instruction, there can be nothing upon which to have faith, and therefore no basis upon which to act in obedience.
Therefore, salvation from destruction is dependent upon righteousness righteousness is dependent upon obedience, (Rom. 5:21) obedience is dependent upon faith, (Heb. 5:9) faith is dependent upon revelation, (Eph. 2:8) revelation is dependent upon grace, (Eph. 3:2-7) grace is dependent upon God. (Tit. 2:11-12; Gal. 1:6)

Note: Noah's salvation was dependent on all of these things. To have left off any one of these, he would have been lost with the rest of the world in the flood. Therefore, He could not say that he was saved by righteousness only, or by obedience
only, or by faith only, or by revelation only, for all of these things were dependent upon God and His gift of grace.

Having reviewed this material, you should be ready for our next lesson regarding "Entrance Into His Kingdom". If you have any questions at this point, be sure that we answer them before beginning the next lesson.

Lesson 12

We have looked at the new kingdom (which is the church), its King (which is Christ), and its law (which is the New Testament). We have also looked at the conditions leading up to our entrance into His kingdom. To the right is an illustration of His kingdom and the blessings that have been made available in Christ and His kingdom as we studies previously. Remember, on the last day, this kingdom will be delivered up to the Father and Christ at that time will put down all authority and God, the Father, will be all in all. 1 Cor. 15:20-28. With these thoughts in mind, in this part of our study, we will consider what the New Testament has to say about the conditions of entrance into His kingdom.

Acts 2:47 Remember we noticed in our last study that the Lord added those who were being saved to the church (His kingdom).

? Do you agree from this passage that entrance into the Lord's church involves the same conditions required for one to be "saved?"

Notice - Under the law of Moses (Old Testament) a person was a citizen of that nation by virtue of birth. However, citizenship in God's kingdom (the church)
is not by physical birth. Notice what Jesus told Nicodemus in:

Jn. 3:1-8 Entrance into this kingdom involves a spiritual birth. Remember what Jesus said in Jn. 18:36, that His kingdom is "not of this world." It is a spiritual kingdom.

Remember - Earlier in our study when we were looking at "Hearing is Believing" we left off that part of our study in Acts 2:37 where upon hearing the
gospel preached and realizing that they had crucified the Son of God, they asked what they must do to be saved. Now let's look at the answer that was given to them.

Acts 2:38 In addition to repentance, they were commanded to be baptized.

? What was the purpose of repenting and being baptized?

? If you were told to repent and be baptized for a one million dollar check, what would you do?

Notice - They were told to repent and be baptized for the remission of sins. Some teach that the word translated as for means "because of." This is
incorrect because it would make this verse meaningless. The Greek word from which "for" is translated is EIS. If it meant "because of," the verse would read like this: "...Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ because of the remission of sins..." This would be saying that they were to be baptized because they were already saved. However, this is not what was said. Look at:

Mt. 26:28 Do you believe that it was necessary for Christ to shed His blood in order for our sins to be removed? This verse has exactly the same  sentence structure
as Acts 2:38 and also uses the same Greek word, EIS. Read this verse>

Notice - Let's look at this verse, changing the meaning of the word for (EIS) to "because of." "For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many because of the remission of sins." By changing the meaning of the word for, we have made this verse say that Jesus shed His blood because our sins were already removed. Obviously, this is not true. 

This point is very important because it has reference to the PURPOSE of baptism.

? After considering the meaning of Mt. 26:28 and also Acts 2:38, do you believe that it is necessary for us to be baptized for the remission of our sins?

? Does it matter if we are baptized for the wrong reason? It does to God. 

Acts 16:16-34 The Example of the Philippian Jailer

Notice - Notice that in vs. 30 the jailer asks the same question that those on the day of Pentecost asked in Acts 2:37 "What must I do to be saved?

Notice - Notice that their answer to his question was to "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ." Then we are told that they "spoke the word of the Lord to him and all who were in his house." After this they were baptized. This shows that the answer to their question "to believe" involved more than just a mental acknowledgment, but demanded obedience. The word that they taught him must have included the necessity of baptism for the remission of sins just as Jesus taught His apostles to teach before He ascended back to heaven. Look at:

Mk. 16:15-16 In addition to believing, Jesus said we must be baptized in order to be saved. To refuse to believe would cause one to be lost. Anyone who would refuse to believe would have no reason to be baptized.

? If on nothing else, do we agree that baptism is commanded?

What is Baptism?

"Baptism" - is from the Greek word "baptizo" which means "to dip or immerse."

Notice - Some teach that baptism is the same thing as "sprinkling" or "pouring." This is incorrect. If God had chosen sprinkling, He would have used the
Greek word, "rhantizo." This word is used in Heb. 9:13 (Read verses 11-14) If God had chosen pouring, He would have used the Greek word
"epicheo." This word is used in Lk. 10:34 (Read verses 33-34)

Acts 8:26-ff The Example of the Ethiopian Eunuch

Notice -First, notice the humble heart of this honest and sincere man who was not ashamed to ask for help and admit that he didn't understand what he was reading. Notice how important it was that he understand who Isaiah was writing to in order to understand its meaning. Therefore, Philip "preached Jesus to him."

Notice - This is the most complete example of obedience. The eunuch obviously believed. The fact that he was willing to obey indicates that he was repentant. He confessed his faith in Christ as God's Son. Then he was baptized.

Notice - Notice that both Philip and the eunuch went "down into the water," indicating that it required much water, not just a sprinkling or pouring of a small amount. ALSO notice that the eunuch went on his way rejoicing after he was baptized.

? What was his reason for being joyful after being baptized? Joy is the logical response after one's sins have been forgiven.

Why Baptism?

Rom. 6:3-6 Baptism is a burial. Christ shed His blood in death and then was buried. It is in His blood that we have remission of sins. So it is in His death that we must also be buried if we want to also be in His resurrection. Baptism is symbolic of Christ's physical death, burial and resurrection. In a spiritual application where the old man (spiritually) is put to death, buried and then raised to live again a new life in Christ.

? When we bury someone, do we sprinkle dirt on them or do we cover them under the ground?

? Do we bury someone while they are still alive or after they are dead?

Notice - Because we understand that we do not bury people alive, we should also understand that we would not bury someone in baptism who is already alive in Christ. It is in death that we put away our old man of sin. And that old body is buried in the watery grave of baptism. Do you agree?

Gal. 3:27 We are baptized into Christ. This agrees with the previous scriptures that we read.

Col. 2:9-12 We are complete in Christ. It is in Him that all fullness dwells.

? If we are complete in Christ, what are we if we are outside of Christ?

Eph. 1:7 Redemption and forgiveness of sins is in Him through His blood.

1 Pet. 3:21 Keeping in mind the example of Noah and how he and his family were saved from dying in the flood, remember that only those who were in the ark were saved as we have already noted.

? Do you believe that baptism is required in order to save us from our sins?

Notice - Baptism is the answer of a good  conscience. It is the assurance that we have obeyed from the heart that pattern or form of doctrine that He has given us. Look at 1 Jn. 3:20-22. When we know and understand what He has told us, and we do it, we have refused to defy our conscience. It is by obeying God's pattern that we can know that we are saved.

The Example of Paul's Conversion

Paul, who wrote the letter to the Romans, tells of his conversion. We read of this in Acts 9, 22 and 26.

Acts 9:1-16 The actual account of Paul's (Saul's) conversion.

Notice - Notice the question that he asked; "What do You want me to do?" Also notice that he was fasting and praying for 3 days while he waited for his answer. Some would say that Paul had a "religious experience" and was saved on the road to Damascus. Others would say that he was saved while he was fasting and praying.

? Was he saved yet?

Acts 22:12-16 Paul recounts his experience before a Jewish mob.

Notice - Notice that upon the arrival of Ananias, he was told what he must do; "arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins." Remember, he had been fasting and praying three days, yet was told to "wash away your sins."

Notice - Also notice the rest of what Ananias said, "Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord."

? What do you suppose he meant by "calling on the name of the Lord?"

Rom. 10:11-13 Paul used the same quotation here in showing that the gospel is now available to "all" - both "Jew and Greek" - "whoever calls on the name of the Lord."

Notice - Paul was quoting from Joel 2:32. (Read this)

Notice - Notice that this is the same passage quoted by Peter and the other apostles on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2:21 when assuring the people that what they were witnessing was a fulfillment of what Joel the prophet had foretold long before.

Notice - Notice the fulfillment of Joel's prophecy in Acts 2:41 when over 3000 people were baptized on that day.

Conclusion - "Calling on the name of the Lord" involved being baptized "for the remission of sins."

Rom. 10:14-15 Notice that being able to "call on the name of the Lord" required that the message of Christ first be preached before people could respond to it.

Rom. 10:16-17 Even though the gospel was already being preached, some were not obeying the conditions of salvation, therefore Paul notes that "not all have obeyed the gospel." The he quotes from Isa. 53:1; "Lord, who had believed our report?"
Notice that Paul equates "believing" with "obeying."
This was an active, obedient faith. This is true faith.

Acts 26:19-29 After Paul had recounted his experience on the road to Damascus to King Agrippa, he spoke of his own "obedience to the heavenly vision" and of his preaching this same message (as described in vs. 23). Paul's words almost convinced Agrippa to become a Christian. Notice that Paul's desire was that Agrippa would become "such as I am." - A Christian, freed from his sins.

1 Jn. 3:18-21 How can we know we are saved from sin? The answer to this question can be found only when we can compare our response and see if it fits the pattern.
Note Remember 2 Jn. 9 and how important this point is.

At this point in our study, it's time to look back at your answers from the beginning of our study. Do they agree with what the scriptures have revealed?

When Confronted with the Truth

As we learned in the beginning of this study, it is very easy for error to be taught, and therefore we are warned not to be deceived. This is why you have been encouraged to study this material on your own in the light of the scriptures - to read it in its proper context and understand what the truth is. Only in this way can your faith be your own and not
borrowed from someone else. When people have been taught error without realizing it at the time, it becomes their responsibility upon learning the truth to make the necessary changes and to obey the truth. We have an example of this in the book of Acts:

Acts 18:24-ff Here we are introduced to Apollos, a preacher in the city of Ephesus whose understanding regarding Christ and baptism was limited to the teachings of John the baptizer, for "he knew only the baptism of John." When a man and wife by the name of Aquila and Priscilla recognized his lack of understanding, they "explained to him the way of God more accurately." Afterward, Apollos left Ephesus and went to the province of Achaia to the city of Corinth.

In the mean time, Paul came to Ephesus, where Apollos had taught his limited understanding about Christ and baptism. There he found some whose understanding was limited to that which Apollos had taught them:

Acts 19:1-5 After Paul asked them a couple of questions, he found out that they did not know about the giving of the Holy Spirit, and their understanding about baptism was limited to that of John's baptism (which was a baptism of repentance, which pointed to the Christ who was "preferred" before John - See Jn. 1:19-28)

Notice - Notice that after Paul pointed out to them the difference between being baptized into John's baptism and being baptized into Christ (See Acts 2:38 - "in the name of Jesus Christ." - Also see Gal. 3:27), they were baptized again, this time for the right purpose; the remission of sins.

This points to the importance of having a right understanding of the purpose of baptism in order for it to be valid.

Illustration - If I go out into the street and offered a hundred dollars to anyone who would allow me to baptize them, would that baptism be for the remission of their sins? Certainly not. Their purpose for being baptized would be to receive the hundred dollars. Likewise, when people are taught that baptism is an outward show of an inward faith that their sins have already been forgiven, would that baptism be for the remission of sins?

Heb. 5:8-9 "though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him,"

Remember Isa. 55:8-9 His ways are not our ways, though they may seem strange to us.

2 Kgs. 5:1-14 Naaman's leprosy was removed only when he obeyed. What he expected and what God wanted differed. Once Naaman obeyed the conditions, his leprosy removed. What about the removal of sin?

Lesson 13


In this lesson we will be looking at the nature of the church that Jesus promised to build. As a review, let's look at the promises and events leading up to its establishment.

Dan. 2:36-45 The prophecy seated in Nebuchadnezzar's dream of a kingdom that would never be destroyed pointed to its establishment in the days of the Roman Empire.

Jn. 18:33-37 Jesus, as He stood before Pilate, was questioned regarding the claim that He was a king. Jesus's explanation of His kingdom identified it as a kingdom rather than an earthly kingdom. He also confirmed His purpose in coming to the earth to be that King.

Mt. 16:13-19 After Peter made the good confession that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, Jesus confirmed that He would build His church and the gates of Hades (the realm of the dead, therefore inferring death) would not prevail against it. This agreed with that which was revealed in  Nebuchadnezzar's dream regarding the everlasting nature of God's kingdom.

Notice - that Jesus was still speaking of this kingdom in the future tense.

Notice - In vs. 18 Jesus speaks of His church, then in vs. 19 He refers to His kingdom - both having reference to one and the same entity.

Mk. 9:1 Shortly after saying these things (cf Mt. 16:28), Jesus indicated the nearness of its coming

Dan. 7:13-14 Daniel's vision of the Son of God ascending up to heaven and being seated at the right hand of the Father (the "Ancient of Days") is an "angel's eye view" of what Paul would write of several hundred years later in the fulfillment of this scene.

Notice - In this vision, the Son of God was being seated on the throne as the King over His kingdom.

Eph. 1:20-ff Later, Paul confirmed the fulfillment of Daniel's dream and the certainty of the fact of Jesus, having been raised from the dead by the glory of the Father and having seated Him at His right hand.

Notice - In Paul's explanation of this, Jesus is at the right hand of the Father as head over the church. This confirms that the church and the are one and the same thing.

Acts 2:36-47 On the day of Pentecost, the kingdom had its beginning. The promise of remission of sins had finally come and the Lord added those who were being saved into this body of saved people - known as the church

church [ekklesia] = "Called out.".

2 Thess. 2:14 As Paul here explains, we are "called" by the gospel of Christ.

1 Pet. 2:9-10 What we have been "called out" of, is the "world." What we have been called "into" is a relationship with the Father in which we are "the people of God."

Eph. 1:3, 7, 11 It is in this relationship (called the "heavenly places") that we enjoy all of the spiritual blessings which include forgiveness of sins and an inheritance in heaven.

Eph. 4:1-6 Paul confirmed that there is but one body. Remember that Paul referred to the body as being the church as we read earlier in Eph. 1:22-23.

Col. 1:13-14, 18 By 62 AD (at the time of the writing of this letter and the Ephesian letter) the kingdom was already in existence and referred to them in the present tense.

1 Cor. 15:20-28 At the end of time, the Son of God will deliver up the kingdom to the Father and will put down all authority, at which time the Father will be "all in all."

Lesson 14


Eph. 5:22-33 The church is to be subject to Christ. (vs. 24) and to respect His will (vs. 33). Notice that in Jn. 17:21, His will is that we all be one.             Remember, He died for the church (vs. 25) because of His great love for her. His desire is that she be holy and without blemish (vs. 27).

2 Tim. 4:2-5 Paul warned the young preacher, Timothy, to preach the truth now, because the time would come when they would not hear the truth, but find preachers who would say what they wanted to hear. But remember 2 Jn. 9-11.

Acts 20:28-31 Paul warned the church in Ephesus (vs. 17) that division would come from within their own ranks. It's no wonder that later, when Paul wrote a letter to them, he reminded them to "keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace."

2 Tim. 2:11-ff Paul warned of error and to be watchful not to follow those who teach error.

2 Thess. 2:1-12 Paul warned of a "falling away."

1 Tim. 4:1-5 Paul warned that in latter times, some would depart from the faith, teaching error.

Mt. 15:1-14 Among the Jews under the Old Testament law, their leaders had transgressed the law and taught error by teaching their own doctrine. Notice that what God has not planted shall be uprooted. Bewared of blind leaders who lead others who are also blind into the same ditch. Remember Prov. 14:12.

1 Cor. 1:10-15 In Corinth, there was already a problem of division.

1 Cor. 11:17-18 Notice the result of "following men."

1 Cor. 3:1-9 Division among God's people is evidence of carnality (fleshly- mindedness - or the opposite of being spiritually-minded).

Eph. 4:1-6 UNITY = ONENESS "one body...one hope...one Lord...one faith."

Acts 2:47 Remember, the Lord adds the obedient to His church -Which church?

The confusion that has resulted in the religious world because of division is a sad fact. Such confusion is the result of men "teaching as doctrines
the commandments of men." (Mt. 15:9) Such division is not by God's design, but by man's doings.

1 Cor. 14:33 God is not the author of confusion.

Consider - If people from all denominations decided to come together to examine the New Testament and follow it and nothing else, what would result?
The church as it is patterned in His word, according to His design!

Wouldn't you like to be just a Christian? Wouldn't you like to be a part of a group of Christians who work and worship together in harmony - without all of the confusion found in denominationalism? Wouldn't you like to be a part of that which the Lord
added those first Christians to on that first Pentecost after Jesus' ascension? (Acts 2) You can! The pattern of God's word that we have examined in this study can result in the peace that is available in Christ - if you will follow His lead as He has revealed it in His word. Unity is accomplished only in Christ through His word - if we will heed it. There are many like you who have sought the truth and have found it -and have joined themselves together in congregations around the world - people who are
simply Christians and who seek to glorify God as His church -"the pillar and ground of the truth." (1 Tim. 3:15)