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Friday, October 26 2012
The Children Of The Two Kingdoms
"Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us."
While the Messiah's conception was miraculous, His birth and physical life were no different than any other child born to a human mother.
"1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise [see also Does Rome Have Christ's Birth Certificate?]: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 1:19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily.
The local shepherds of Bethlehem, men of Judah (i.e. Jews; see Who Were The First Jews?, Israel In History and Prophecy: Jews and Israel In History and Prophecy: Judaism) were the same-day visitors to the newborn Messiah ("2:11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 2:12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger." Luke 2:11-12 KJV). The famous "wise men" were Gentiles (see Why Did The Magi Come?) who traveled from a long distance after the birth had occurred. By the time of their arrival, months later, they came, not to a stable, but "into the house" where "they saw the young child." While man-made tradition holds that there were three "wise men," the Scriptures don't state how many men there were - only that they had three kinds of gifts. There could been just three men, but there could have been many more.
"2:1 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king [see Israel In History and Prophecy: Herod], behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, 2:2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.
Other "children," of another sort of kingdom, sought to kill the newborn Messiah. That threat to the Messiah's life continued through His human lifetime.
"2:13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.
Herod the Great's death did not end the threat to the Messiah. There were always others of that Christ-rejecting kingdom.
"2:19 But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, 2:20 Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child's life.
"If God were your Father, ye would love Me ... Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do"
The Ministry of the Messiah was preceded by the prophet John, popularly known as John the Baptist. John warned people to turn from the kingdom of this world and "Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance." For that, John was killed by the "children" of Satan's kingdom (see Lethal Lust).
"3:1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, 3:2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight [see The Ministries Of The Two Greatest Prophets and Jesus And John: Similarities And Differences].
The Messiah repeated the warning, particularly to those who claimed to be God's children ("we have one Father, even God") simply because they had Abraham as an ancestor. The Messiah, Who truly was God's child, rebuked them, not only with "If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham," but with a statement of just whose "children" they actually were: "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him." Keep in mind that many of those Pharisees later repented of being "children of the devil" (including Saul, who became the apostle Paul, and Nicodemus, to whom the famous "John 3:16" and "born again" teachings were given; see The Passed Over Pharisees and What Was The Lesson Of John 3:16?), as well as many others ("the Pharisees which believed" Acts 15:5 KJV). Being deceived by the Devil isn't itself a condemnable condition - unless one chooses to make it so by refusing to repent when the means and opportunity are made available.
"8:39 They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father [see Israel In History and Prophecy: Roots and Branches and A Biography Of Abraham: Abrahamic Religions].
"For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened"
There are many who take advantage of those who are seeking to turn from Satan's loser kingdom to God's Kingdom (see The Messiah's Warning About Christian Charlatans).
"18:1 At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? Repent, For The Kingdom Of Heaven Is At Hand, The Constitution Of The Kingdom Of God and The Church: Mission Accomplished]
Satan's kingdom is armed with two weapons - first, deception (as described above), and when that ceases to work, persecution.
"5:1 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: 5:2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
The children of God's Kingdom will emerge victorious. How? "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you." But notice carefully, "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." Genuine repentance must be according to the Word of God, not merely claiming Christ's Name, while doing whatever one pleases. The Messiah had a warning for those who think otherwise: "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
"7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: 7:8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened [see How To Pray].
What will happen to the "children" of Satan's kingdom? "But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
"8:11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. 8:12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." (Matthew 8:11 KJV)
The "temptation of Christ" was an attempt by the Devil to make the Messiah into a child of Satan's kingdom ("4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me." Matthew 4:8-9 KJV). That's what Satan has been doing right from the time of Adam and Eve, from which "the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one." When the Kingdom of God is come, Satan's kingdom, and all who refuse to repent of being Satan's children, will be obliterated into non-existence. But for those who choose life, "shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear."
"13:36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.
Fact Finder: How is it that Satan's evil kingdom of darkness seems "bright"?
This Day In History, October 26
901: King Alfred the Great (known as "Alfred the Great"), Saxon king of Wessex, died. An actual battlefield king, and scholar, Alfred fought the invading Danes and formed England's first navy.
1440: Gilles de Rais, French marshall who fought for Joan of Arc, was hanged for Satanism and the murders of 140 children. His crimes inspired the tale of "Bluebeard."
1640: The Treaty of Ripon was signed. It restored peace between Charles I of England and Scotland.
1776: Benjamin Franklin traveled to France to request French support for his revolution. France hypocritically agreed to arm and supply the rebellion of the New England colonies, while at the very same time tolerating no independence for its own colonies in Louisiana and elsewhere through the continent of North America. France sought only to break the military ties between Britain and New England so that France could invade and take them over for itself - a plan that wasn't carried out because of the wars started by Napoleon across Europe and into Russia that consumed the French army.
1825: The Erie Canal opened, linking southern Lake Erie to the Hudson River, and then to the Atlantic, thereby allowing the U.S. to bypass the British-controlled lower St. Lawrence (the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway in 1959 by the governments of Canada and the U.S. opened ports on all of the Great Lakes to ocean shipping).
1863: The Red Cross was established in Geneva, Switzerland.
1905: Sweden and Norway signed a treaty of separation; Oscar II abdicated as king of Norway, and was replaced by Prince Charles of Denmark, who became King Haakon VII.
1918: Germany's supreme commander General Erich Ludendorff resigned in protest of the terms to which the German government agreed to for the First World War armistice. This set the stage for his later support for Adolf Hitler (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion) who claimed that Germany did not lose the war on the battlefield, but rather was "stabbed in the back" by the politicians (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars).
1942: U.S. and Japanese naval forces engaged in the Battle of Santa Cruz. The Japanese suffered a greater number of ships lost, but the U.S. aircraft carrier Hornet was sunk. Beginning with the attacks on Pearl Harbor, aircraft carriers were the means of the Pacific war - an era now gone. In any war between the major military powers in the Pacific today (i.e. the U.S., Russia, China), aircraft carriers, and their entire accompanying battle groups, would be instantly destroyed by nuclear missiles.
1978: Smallpox was declared eradicated in the world.
1984: Surgeons in California transplanted a baboon heart into a 10 day old baby girl, nicknamed "Baby Fae"; she died a few days later.
1994: Israel and Jordan signed a peace treaty aimed at ending 46 years of conflict. Much of the territory of the present-day Kingdom of Jordan was held by the Israelite tribes who were assigned lands east of the Jordan River (see Why East And West Manasseh?).
1997: Alan Goodman, 53, was released from an Israeli prison after serving 16 years of a life sentence for a 1982 shooting spree on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem in which an arab guard was killed and 8 Muslims were wounded. Upon his release, the U.S. born former Israeli soldier was deported to the U.S. (see also A Biography Of Abraham: Abrahamic Religions).