“Introduction to the King”

“The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

As it is written in the prophets, BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER BEFORE THY FACE, WHICH SHALL PREPARE THE WAY BEFORE THEE. 

THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS, PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT. 

John did baptize in the wilderness and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.

And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him.

And John was clothed with camel’s hair, and with a girdle of skin (leather belt) about his loins; and he did eat locust and wild honey.

And preached saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose. 

I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.

And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan.

And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:

And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

And immediately the Spirit driveth him into the wilderness.

And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.

Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God.

And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” Mark 1:1-15

As we begin our adventure into refreshing ourselves through some of the teaching of Jesus, I want to point something out.

One of the main issues today, that has led up to the false teachings that are rampant today leading millions, possibly billions down the wrong path as they have trusted the salvation of their souls to these “teachers” that are either intentionally, for gain, misleading them or having put themselves into a field that they are not qualified for.

To be qualified, you must have a true relationship with Christ, included having repented of sins and accepted his salvation.

If they themselves have never repented, how on earth can they lead others to repentance?

Of course, they teach that anything goes because they do not know the truth of the Gospel, nor do they know the danger that they put not only themselves but those who follow them in.

God is Holy, He changes that for no one.

So I want to give a little of John’s story from multiple Gospel accounts, this I believe is one of the major issues going on, no one can truly understand the word of God unless God reveals it to them by His Spirit, this is why Jesus, when asked by the disciples why he spoke in parables, answered this.

Mark 4:11-12:”And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable.

And he said unto, Unto you it is given to know the mystery (secret, hidden truths) of the kingdom of God; but unto them that are without (outside) all these things are done in parables.

THAT SEEING THEY MAY SEE, AND NOT PERECEIVE; AND HEARING THEY MAY HEAR. AND NOT UNDERSTAND; LEST AT ANY TIME THEY SHOULD BE CONVERTED, AND THEIR SINS SHOULD BE FORGIVEN THEM.” 

That is why so many will twist scripture and try to argue points when they do not have the complete understanding of what they are miscommunicating to others.

God had the Bible written in such a way, that we can read part of an account in one book and then need to read the rest of the story in one or several other books of the Bible, and some things from the Old Testament are revisited and further explained in the New Testament and vice versa.

That is why we are told to “righty divide the word of Truth”, it is not so easy that they can just pick a book (which they do) and then twist it into their own personal interruption. God has to give us that understanding and in order to have that understanding we have to be in him.

And as they would rather trust in their own “knowledge” and their own “understanding”, he lets them have it their way.

They have the praise of themselves, and of others who are being misled, but they have nothing of God.

Now that we got that out of the way!

I want to give a more detailed account of John, it is good to know these things for ourselves, and it gives us true insight concerning the beginning of Christ’s ministry and the purpose of it.

Luke 3:1-9: “Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituraea and the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene.

Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto john the son of Zacharias in the wilderness.

And he came into all the country about (around) Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance from the remission of sins.  

As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias (Isaiah) the prophet, saying, THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS, PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT.

EVERY VALLEY SHALL BE FILLED, AND EVERY MOUNTAIN AND HILL SHALL BE BROUGHT LOW; AND THE CROOKED SHALL BE MADE STRAIGHT, AND THE ROUGH WAYS SHALL BE MADE SMOOTH.

AND ALL FLESH SHALL SEE THE SALVATION OF GOD.

Then said he to the multitudes that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation (offspring) of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father (as an ancestor) for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire.”

I want to take an injection moment, before we continue, please notice that John was essentially dealing with the problem we have today.

They were arrogantly saying in their hearts that they did not need this salvation, because they were of the lineage of Abraham, trying to use lineage as an excuse for not having to take personal responsibility for the need of repentance.

And he literally called them the offspring of Vipers, snakes, serpents, taught in all things reprobate, never being warned by those who came before, that there was a wrath to be escaped.

He let them know that this was not about having worshippers or servants of the Lord, that God could create heirs for Abraham out of the very rocks if he so chose, that the need for salvation was not needed of God, but needed by them themselves, as that wrath would come and all not producing fruit of the spirit would be sawn down.

This got their attention! Most people want salvation, that is why it is up to us to let them know the truth.

Luke 3:10-22:”And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then?

He answered and saith unto them, He that hath two coats (tunics), let him impart (give) to him that hath none: and he that hath meat (food), let him do likewise.

Then came also the publicans (tax collectors) to be baptized, and said unto him, Master (Teacher), what shall we do?

And he said unto them, Exact (Collect) no more than that which is appointed you.

And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, (Do not intimidate or shake down) neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages. 

And the people were in expectation, and all men mused (reasoned) in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ or not.

John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water: but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire.

Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner (barn);but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable. 

And many other things in his exhortation preached he unto the people. 

But Herod the tetrarch, being reproved (rebuked) by him for Herodias his brother Philip’s wife, and for all the evils he had done.

Added this yet above all, that he shut John up in the prison.

Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened.

And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said Thou art my beloved Son: in thee I am well pleased.”

We’ll get a little more into what went on with John and Herod in another post, but as you see John clearly taught what was acceptable to God. These things were not optional, neither are they optional today.

Lastly, we can see the importance of doing as God requires, as John preached and baptized, warning, and exhorting those who came to him and we see, even, Jesus, in obedience to God, doing the same,

Matthew 3: 13-15: “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.

But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and thou comest to me?  

And Jesus answering said to him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered (allowed) Him.”

John did not want to baptize Jesus, because he knew who Jesus was, (and is), he knew he needed Jesus to baptize him, but Jesus told him to do it, to allow it, because it was fitting, Jesus was an example for us and to us, that all righteous must be fulfilled.

If the Word himself kept Word, how do you suppose so many teach that it is negotiable and open to interpretation?  It’s not.

Love & Peace till tomorrow! Thanks for reading!

*Also, I am not shouting! Some scripture is capitalized as it is the Bible to denote it being recited from another passage.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2022/ Rev. N. Brown Johnson

 

“Endued from On High”

“In those days came John the Baptist preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, and saying, Repent ye; for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

 For this is he, that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias (Isaiah),saying, THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING (PROCLAIMING) IN THE WILDERNESS, PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT. 

And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins (belt around his waist); and his meat (food) was locusts and wild honey.

Then went out to him, Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan. And were baptized of him in the Jordan.confessing their sins.

But when he saw many of the Pharisees, and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet (worthy of) repentance:

And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father; for I say unto, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

And now also the ax laid unto the root of the trees; therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance BUT he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear; he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire

Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the graner (barn); but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.

But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? (you should be baptizing me, not me baptizing you)

And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer (allow) it to be so now: for thus it becometh us (is fitting for us)  to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered (allowed) him. 

And Jesus, when he was baptized went up straightway out of the water; and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:

And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Matthew 3:1-17

You know, without a doubt, most would have thought John was a sight to behold, he had to have been, dressed in a camel hair tunic, wearing a leather belt, living in the wild, eating from the land, while the priests and Pharisees wanted the best of the best and to be treated as royalty, while John on the other hand had royalty living inside of him.

So there he was preaching, rather fervently, I would think, especially since we were told this concerning John, “For he shall be great (favored) in the sight of the Lord, and he shall drink NEITHER wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost even from his mother’s womb.” Luke 1:15

So as the births of Jesus and John had been foretold by the angel, he was filled with the Holy Ghost before even being born.

And as Mary witnessed to John’s mother, Elisabeth, sharing her own miraculous news to her cousin, we are told that the babe leaped for joy in her womb.

And by adulthood, he was unlike anyone that had ever encountered, He was very different from the priests, the people,and most of the Pharisees and all that claimed to have the only tickets to heaven at that time.

God created us to be different and different is what we need right now, as the world is playing footsies with the devil himself and that clock is inching closer to striking Midnight with each threat and act carried against Israel, as we have witnessed this past week, as the media cries on behalf of those who hope to destroy her, but oh my, if they only knew that God himself will come and fight for Jerusalem and that it is only a matter of time and no amount of money, politics, earthly power, or prestige will in any way have influence over those things which are to come.

The only hope is the only hope that has ever truly been, and that hope is Jesus, and we have to get on fire sharing the Gospel, our talents, and whatever God is bidding us to do, as time draws near, praying they will listen but you have to have God grant the favor so taht they will.

People could not help but to listen to John, as the calling of God on him drew people for that very reason, maybe in their carnal flesh, they came out of curiosity, to see and to hear, as Jesus even asked, but in coming, they heard and they were changed, they believed and they repented, and they were baptized.

John was sent here for a very specific purpose,and we all are, whether we ever realize that or , God to fulfil that destiny, nevertheless,we are all born for a divine purpose on this earth.

Fast forward a bit, through the arrest and crucifixion and resurrectionJesus gives them these words ashe appears supernaturally again to his disciples as the time draws nigh for him to ascend back into heaven.

“And as they thus spoke, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. But they were terrified  and affrighted (frightened), and supposed that they had seen a spirit.

And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts (doubts) arise in your heart? Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself, handle (touch) me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. 

And when he had thus spoken , he shewed them his hands and his feet. and while they yet believed no ( for joy, and wondered (marvelled),he said unto them, Have ye here any meat (food)

And they gave him a piece of broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. And he took it, and did eat before them.

And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 

Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, and he said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved (was necessary) Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead on the third day; And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among the nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

And ye are witnesses of these things.

And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye (wait) in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with the power from on high.”  Luke 24:36-49

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (purpose) in one placeAnd SUDDENLY there came a sound FROM heaven as of a mighty rushing wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto then cloven (divided) tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.

And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues (languages),as the Spirit gave them utterance.

And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.

Now when this was noised abroad (sound occurred),the multitude came together, and was confounded (confused), because every man heard them speak in his own language.

And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans?

And how hear we every man in his own tongue (language), wherein he was born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and dwellers of Mesopotamia, and Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia. Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers (visitors) of Rome, Jews and Proselytes. Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God. 

And they were all amazed, and were in doubt (were perplexed), saying, one to another, What meaneth this?

Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.

But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken unto my words. For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the the third hour of the day.

But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;

AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS IN THE LAST DAYS, SAITH GOD, I WILL POUR OUT OF MY SPIRIT UPON ALL FLESH: AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY, AND YOUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS, AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS:

AND ON MY SERVANTS AND ON MY HANDMAIDENS I WILL POUR OUT IN THOSE DAYS OF MY SPIRIT; AND THEY SHALL PROPHESY;

AND I WILL SHEW WONDERS IN HEAVEN ABOVE, AND SIGNS IN THE EARTH BENEATH, BLOOD, AND FIRE, AND VAPOUR OF SMOKE: AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS, THAT WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.” Acts 2:1-21 

That blessed promise is still for us today, we just having to be a willing vessel and pray and seek God with our whole heart, as we seek, remember that this  happened to the disciples, suddenly.

To be endued, which literally means: “endow or provide with a quality or ability”

We can do nothing in ourselves but once we are indwelt with the presence of God, all things are possible, because it is no longer us.

God does what he wants, when he wants, and all things are in his time.and keep John in mind, people are never going to understand what they can not possibly understand until they experience it for themselves, and to experience it for themselves their hearts must be surrendered to God,

Many have mocked, especially those in the entertainment industry,not having a clue as to just how real God is, nor a clue as to just how serious an offense that is. Much like the Pharisees of the day always wanting something proven to them, God is not in the business of having to prove anything to anyone, because one day there will be no question of his existence or his power.

The Holy Ghost is a precious, precious gift, that can only be given from God.

And as we see all the turmoil of this world grow worse each day and all the things Jesus warned us of coming to pass, we need more than ever to be mindful of this precious promise and seek God and all of his fullness and allow that indwelling to guide us to be a light to those in darkness.

And to allow his presence to work through our mortal bodies as he sees fit, so they, as the men at the day of Pentecost can hear witness that they can understand and that the signs and wonders, healing and miracles, deliverances from drugs, alcohol, and bondage can come to those enslaved.

Have a blessed Pentecost, not just on the calendar day but pentecost, EVERYDAY!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2021/ Reverend Nina Brown Johnson