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OUR MONTHLY BOOK HIGHLIGHT!
HR The Regal Pair
Holiness and Righteousness is a subject which cuts through the morass created by the modern church. It yields its pristine features only to those willing to bow before the presence of God, Jehovah, the Almighty and reigning Son, Jesus. The Regal Pair (H&R) reign, not separately, but as a unit of glory unknown in current circles. However, to those who will become the Bride of Christ, their enthronement is welcome. The Father has always intended that those of the last days embrace this duo with a passion. Their work will bring perfection and yield a countenance as defining as Daniel's and his companions when compared to the world's fare.
This book's foundation is an intense study of Scripture in three dimensions: first, establishing God's definition of holiness and righteousness through His Word; second, creating an understanding about the two elements and their separate character and labor; and third, a joyous revelation about their unique glory when viewed separately. It is in this venue the author separates the inseparable, according to grammatical and word study lines. Grammatically, they are viewed first as Holiness and Righteousness, the noun form; then as Holy and Righteous, the adjective form. As Word studies, their jewel-like qualities are examined in both Old and New Testament settings. A reader should recognize that "Holy and Righteous" describe the heart of the Father and must characterize the heart of His Sons and Daughters.
One cogent truth links each of the chapters, though their arrangement may seem awkward at first, That link is the "simplicity of Christ." His Holiness and Righteousness connects with the Spirit of Holiness to bring the subject-work to life. Although H&R arrives at many doctrinal ports, like a great ship of state, its permanent home is the human heart. Their cargo is perfection, and when this ship sails into the Spirit-port of the reader's mind, an awareness of spiritual refreshing will take place. In the Twenty-first Century, few have considered such perfection as possible, let alone the apprehension of the Pair personally. It is in this realm that the book is explosive, revealing "the ministry of righteousness" as body-ministry.
Third pass through The Regal Pair. This book cooks ya! Sometimes not so slowly! Reviewer: J.L., KY
The Regal Pair is one of the most profound books I've read. And I've read many books in my 34 years as a believer. I carry it with me and read parts of it all the time. It has been instrumental in changing my life and what I desire to be before Him. We pastor a Messianic congregation, and we highly recommend that everyone read it, as this is the direction of this congregation. And I know this has to be at work in Dr. Oliver's life in order for him to write it. I am so very thankful for the relatively few men who, with much courage, speak, live and write God's truth. It brings great revelation and change to our lives. Reviewer: S.S., Ohio
As I have been reading The Regal Pair, I have little concern about Dr. Oliver's spiritual health. No one can write what he has without the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I have found the best section so far to be his delineation of the work of the Holy Spirit in the overcomers' life. I am grateful to see the conciseness. I have never read any books that deal with the topic specifically. I have read many and never saw more than a vague hint or paragraph about the role of the Holy Spirit. Reviewer: M.M., ARK
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ZADOK PUBLICATIONS MONTHLY NEWSLETTER
June 1, 2017
Again a message came to me from the LORD: 2 "Son of man, you live among rebels who could see the truth if they wanted to, but they don't want to. They could hear Me if they would listen, but they won't listen because they are rebellious.
Before the Study Remarks:
This opening scripture deserves attention.
First, it should cause every believer to pray for their eyes and ears to be open and receiving all God has for them. Unfortunately, not many are aware of the need, and they run the risk of resorting in the camp of the rebellious.
Second, this verse generally characterizes the state of Israel from that time to this one. The Jews of modern Israel reject the Lordship of Jesus Christ, just as they did in ancient times. So, they are living in that same state of rebellion; one can only pray their eyes and ears will open in these last days.
Third, a strong stand with Paul was needed regarding the Temple folks of his day and the same is needed for the Israel of today. There are not two covenants, one for the Jews and one for the Christian.
There is no greater covenant than that which is brought and bought by Jesus.
More than ever, there is confusion about Israel. It is necessary to separate the territorial
State of Israel from "The Israel of God (spiritual Israel)."
Allow me to state up front that support for the nation of Israel is important for two reasons:
Shortly after the establishment of the State of Israel (1948-9), a speaker from Israel mounted the chapel podium of a Southern Baptist college to explain how his nation chose to be a State rather than a religious entity. He spoke about Israel's future and how they looked forward to building a strong society based on religious freedom. At the end of his speech, he commented, "after all, God is at the top of the mountain of belief, and you Christians are climbing up one way and on the opposite of the same mountain, we Jews are climbing up another way"…He concluded his speech with, "I will see you at the top."
- They are a nation state who chose not to be a religious state, and free governments ought to support and encourage them, as friendly allies should be honored.
- They govern a territory with end time ramifications.
I was barely 19 years of age at the time and had been a pastor for 18 months when I rejected that theory then and I still do. Yet, there are huge numbers accepting this premise today, both pastors and their congregations. With the acceptance of Interfaith and their "all faiths" construct, apparently there are climbers from many directions-but only believers in Jesus make it to the top. Yet, there are many congregations who cannot sing the chorus, "One way and only one."
There is no doubt the land mass (even though it is short of the total land mass God ordained for Israel) is preserved now for the coming of the Lord and the carrying out of His plan. Truly, Jerusalem (though the target of modern divisionism) is being readied for the coming of the Temple of the New Covenant to come down and occupy its rightful place. NONE of these
occurrences are for the building of another man made temple or to honor the Jews in their continued rejection of His Son.
The fact that Christian groups across the world support modern Israel is an undeniable fact.
If their purpose is to present a Christian witness with one aim: the conversion of the modern Jew to Christ--well and good. However, the modern State of Israel prohibits evangelism of the
Jewish population for the purpose of conversion. (They still stand in rebellion.)
Up to now, evangelism is not the stated mission of the various support groups. Their reasoning is based on many factors. They cite "those who bless Israel" will be blessed. Many believe the Jews have an ancient covenant with God that operates parallel with Jesus' Covenant. Still others support eschatological doctrines which accommodate their views on Israel, as well as all end time events. (Why should one enter to spar with such thinking? Their minds are made up, even though truth needs to be stated.)
It is necessary to say, however, that some of that thinking is diametrically opposed to the teaching of Paul in Romans (which was written for Christians and Jews) as well as the book of Hebrews.
Even Peter and the Disciples had to decide the issue early on when Gentiles were grafted in. Believing Jews wanted to impose circumcision on Gentile Christian males in order to satisfy Jewish tradition. They wanted adherence to the Law. The early church ruled against adherence to Judaism. That rule still stands! (Yes, Paul relented and circumcised Timothy.)
"Grafted In," is a Pauline term referring to spiritual Israel and their covenant with Jesus. He taught that the gospel was not exclusively for the Jews. As a matter of fact, Paul wished himself
cursed if it meant his native nation would come to Christ. This would have been an unnecessary
sacrifice if both covenants were operating in parallel form. Paul deemed an unbelieving Jew to be LOST. Unbelievers still are. (Jesus believed this way too. Look at John 3 and Nicodemus.)
Personally, I am not against CUFI and other efforts (Messianic groups) advocating for Israel, for they are occupying the land awaiting the day when many of them will openly confess Christ.
However, a closer look at Pauline doctrine would help to keep matters clear.
2 Now if the Gentiles were enriched because the Jews turned down God's offer of salvation, think how much greater a blessing the world will share when the Jews finally accept it.
I want to find a way to make the Jews want what you Gentiles have, and in that way I might save some of them. 15 For since the Jews' rejection meant that God offered salvation to the rest of the world, how much more wonderful their acceptance will be. It will be life for those who were dead! 16 And since Abraham and the other patriarchs were holy, their children will also be holy. For if the roots of the tree are holy, the branches will be, too.
17 But some of these branches from Abraham's tree, some of the Jews, have been broken off. And you Gentiles, who were branches from a wild olive tree, were grafted in.
Notice, it was Abraham's family of faith (holy folks) where Gentiles were grafted into. Paul was not talking about being grafted into the Law and the sacrifices and the Temple. He was speaking of spiritual Israel in predating the Law.
(Without reciting the whole of Romans, read this chapter and the former chapters and it becomes clear what our Christian interaction ought to be.)
Go now to Hebrews.
1 So we must listen very carefully to the truth we have heard, or we may drift away from it. 2 The message God delivered through angels has always proved true, and the people were punished for every violation of the law and every act of disobedience. 3 What makes us think that we can escape if we are indifferent to this great salvation that was announced by the Lord Jesus himself? It was passed on to us by those who heard him speak, 4 and God verified the message by signs and wonders and various miracles and by giving gifts of the Holy Spirit whenever He chose to do so.
What did Jesus announce? It is the New Covenant of the Kingdom and the Gospel of it. Verse four tells the story of the early church and its sponsorship, even though persecuted by the Jews.
Through the suffering of Jesus, God made Him a perfect leader, one fit to bring them into (Gentiles) their salvation.
11 So now Jesus and the ones He makes holy have the same Father.
Jesus deserves far more glory than Moses, just as a person who builds a fine house deserves more praise than the house itself.
Without "Jesus holiness," no one will see the Father.
Fourth, Ezekiel was witnessing an almost unbelievable situation. How could the people of God go through the tribulation of captivity, and the awesome shame of being slaves to a pagan nation, and still hold to their rebellion? Similarly, "How could a people endure the awful Nazi regime and come out holding their unbelief?"
Ezekiel understood, from this moment forward, why God made his forehead like flint.
(I will not pursue the issues of Ashkenazim and their persecution of Sephardic Jews today. The leadership of both religion and government regularly discriminate against "blood line Jews.")
Conclusion: This treatise is not advocating a replacement theology, but a sharing of early church theology. This view was upheld by the church until the opening of the 1800's.
6 And this is the secret plan: The Gentiles have an equal share with the Jews in all the riches inherited by God's children. Both groups have believed the Good News, and both are part of the same body and enjoy together the promise of blessings through Christ Jesus. 7 By God's special favor and mighty power, I have been given the wonderful privilege of serving him by spreading this Good News.
10 God's purpose was to show his wisdom in all its rich variety to all the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms. They will see this when Jews and Gentiles are joined together in His church. 11 This was his plan from all eternity, and it has now been carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Chapters 12-15 are a closely knit treatise addressing three basic groups:
When reviewing these chapters, it is good to think of each group much the same way as the first chapters of Revelation. Just as Jesus took to task each congregation, revealing their mind and hearts, the Lord singles out each group and pulls back their curtain (to show their confessions and concessions). All of them share the common malady of having eyes and ears that neither see nor hear because they reject the message from God.
- Zedekiah (the King)
- False prophets (both male and female)
- Jewish elders (along with their constituent followers)
(A message to King Zedekiah and the citizens of Jerusalem, yet to be slaughtered.)
8 The next morning this message came to me from the LORD: 9 "Son of man, these rebels, the people of Israel, have asked you what all this means. 10 Say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: These actions contain a message for Zedekiah in Jerusalem and for all the people of Israel.' 11 Then explain that your actions are a demonstration of what will soon happen to them, for they will be driven from their homes and sent away into exile.
Ezekiel was to faithfully carry out a very strange exhibition in the eyes of the general public,
depicting the eventual fate of those remaining in Jerusalem. Perhaps those already captured and carried off to Babylonian slavery felt abused because some were allowed to remain in the holy land.
The demonstration was comprised of two parts. The first part featured a daylight loading of clothing, into a small container, to show how little of their goods would be carried with them.
Pack whatever you can carry on your back and leave your home to go on a journey. Make your preparations in broad daylight so the people can see you, for perhaps they will even yet consider what this means, even though they are such rebels. 4 Bring your baggage outside during the day so they can watch you.
The second part was a nighttime event.
Then as they are watching, leave your house in the evening, just as captives do when they begin a long march to distant lands. 5 Dig a hole through the wall while they are watching and carry your possessions out through it. 6 As they watch, lift your pack to your shoulders and walk away into the night. Cover your face and don't look around. All of these actions will be a sign for the people of Israel.
Notice the exactness he employed in doing all that he was instructed. Such obedience and concentration to detail is a much needed attribute for pulpit and pew today! Let me assure the deepest skeptic-there is a great reward for such exactness. Also, allow me to say that disobedience and half- hearted compromises have a reward as well. God is speaking
this very hour and few are listening. Hear now, "Obedience is better than sacrifice."
7 So I did as I was told. In broad daylight I brought my pack outside, filled with the things I might carry into exile. Then in the evening while the people looked on, I dug through the wall with my hands and went out into the darkness with my pack on my shoulder.
Duty to these "strange pickings" would invariably be answered by local authorities, as one's
mental acuity being questioned, if it were our "advanced society." Is it any wonder these rebels sought a logical reason for such activity, and Ezekiel gave them more than they wished to hear?
Singling out Zedekiah, Ezekiel prophesies that he will do exactly as the drama had conveyed.
He would leave (trying to escape) by night through a hole in the wall, and would be captured
and the entourage with him would be slaughtered. Then Ezekiel details what will happen
to Zedekiah as he is carried into Babylon. (History records the prophet's words were true.)
Zedekiah watched as his two sons were beheaded and then the guards put his eyes out, so
the last thing he ever saw was this event. Tears flowing out of sockets are too late.
Next, Ezekiel addressed the general public huddling with their King. They had been told by false prophets that Jeremiah was a liar and nothing hugely bad would come to them. They had been encouraged by elders to "go ahead and plan your futures with buildings and enterprise" for those speaking of capture were insane and not to be trusted. What now?
17 Then this message came to me from the LORD: 18 "Son of man, tremble as you eat your food. Drink your water with fear, as if it were your last. 19 Give the people this message from the Sovereign LORD concerning those living in Israel and Jerusalem: They will eat their food with trembling and sip their tiny portions of water in utter despair, because their land will be stripped bare on account of their violence. 20 The cities will be destroyed and the farmland deserted. Then you will know that I am the LORD."
Pay special attention to the underlined sentence, for after each judgment (see the verse before),
this phrase appears. Sometimes the NLT will use "they" instead of "you." "You" is plural in form as is "they or them." "You" is used like "each one of you."
The previous verse points to another group which I will cover at the end of this newsletter; it is those who survive. One encounters them scattered throughout the study, just as they are here.
"And when I scatter them among the nations, they will know that I am the LORD. 16 But I will spare a few of them from death by war, famine, or disease, so they can confess to their captors about how wicked they have been. Then they will know that I am the LORD!"
The prophet foretells about those who survive and are taken into Babylon. Some of those who escape into the mountains are eventually scattered about the earth (similar to those in Samaria).
Nonetheless, those who are joined to the captive groups in Babylon are different. Ezekiel says the others will see their attitude toward the things of God and be prone to repent of their own rebellious spirit.
Finally, the Lord returns to generalizations pertinent to the whole population-the newcomers and those who have been there in earlier immigration-they share the same judgment. It
centers around their mouths and what their confession reveals about their hearts. Just as
the eye and ear stigmata, they share a common mouth.
Again a message came to me from the LORD: 22 "Son of man, what is that proverb they quote in Israel: 'Time passes, making a liar of every prophet'? 23 Give the people this message from the Sovereign LORD: I will put an end to this proverb, and you will soon stop quoting it. Now give them this new proverb to replace the old one: 'The time has come for every prophecy to be fulfilled!'
24 "Then you will see what becomes of all the false visions and misleading predictions about peace in Israel. 25 For I am the LORD! What I threaten always happens. There will be no more delays, you rebels of Israel! I will fulfill my threat of destruction in your own lifetime, says the Sovereign LORD."
26 Then this message came to me from the LORD: 27 "Son of man, the people of Israel are saying, 'His visions won't come true for a long, long time.' 28 Therefore, give them this message from the Sovereign LORD: No more delay! I will now do everything I have threatened! I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken!"
What characterizes the confessions of our day? What is spewing out of mouths in leadership
in the realms of politics and religion? Are we held responsible for our mouths?
(Study that in the home groups.)
CHAPTER 13: (Group Two: The false prophets, both male and female)
Then this message came to me from the LORD: 2 "Son of man, speak against the false prophets of Israel who are inventing their own prophecies. Tell them to listen to the word of the LORD. 3 This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Destruction is certain for the false prophets who are following their own imaginations and have seen nothing at all!
"In your face" judgment was the commission God gave Ezekiel. Confrontational approaches are rare in clergy circles. Most certainly, Ezekiel had a raw task to carry out. The question arises,
"Are there any false prophets today and does the criteria set forth in these verses apply?" Should they be confronted?
4 "O people of Israel, these prophets of yours are like jackals digging around in the ruins. 5 They have done nothing to strengthen the breaks in the walls around the nation. They have not helped it to stand firm in battle on the day of the LORD. 6 Instead, they have lied and said, 'My message is from the LORD,' even though the LORD never sent them. And yet they expect him to fulfill their prophecies! 7 Can your visions be anything but false if you claim, 'This message is from the LORD,' when I have not even spoken to you?"
Is it not one thing to prophesy a lie and another to demand God carry it out? Audacious behavior suits the pride-filled prophet who wallows in his claimed "authority."
Behold, they are called "these prophets of yours" implying they are not His. Their sin was multiple. They stood guilty of Omission: they saw the holes in the walls of safety and daubed
them instead of repairing them. They stood guilty of Commission-willfully lying about their
intimacy with the Lord. Dare one question the clergy of today?
Ezekiel burst upon these false prophets with a word that ripped away their façade of religious piety and stood before those "many allied clergy" and cried out the equivalent of: "Traitor! Fraud! Miscreant!" I am sure it was for this audience he was given a forehead of flint.
Here, we get from Ezekiel the term, "Whitewash," meaning to cover up something. It is the term Jesus used on the Pharisees when He called them "whitewashed sepulchers full of dead men's bones." Those theologs of His day knew the implication.
False prophets have a common thread-their prophecies don't stand. The Lord said when
the storms of life come, the whitewash will not remain-neither will those who depended on it.
Descriptors abound in this chapter, such as False Prophets are like Jackals. They are deceivers. They are liars! (They will one day answer to their people.)
13 "Therefore, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will sweep away your whitewashed wall with a storm of indignation, with a great flood of anger, and with hailstones of fury. 14 I will break down your wall right to the foundation, and when it falls, it will crush you. Then you will know that I am the LORD! 15 At last my anger against the wall and those who covered it with whitewash will be satisfied. Then I will say to you: 'The wall and those who whitewashed it are both gone. 16 They were lying prophets who claimed peace would come to Jerusalem when there was no peace. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken!'"
Special Message To Women False Prophets:
Especially odious are women false prophets. Why? They introduce to the scene witchcraft and
their Jezebel spirit. They influence the whole range of age groups and social divisions. They play to the crowd who love to hear their lies.
You kill those who should not die, and you promise life to those who should not live.
22 You have discouraged the righteous with your lies, when I didn't want them to suffer grief. And you have encouraged the wicked by promising them life, even though they continue in their sins. 23 But you will no longer talk of seeing visions that you never saw, nor will you practice your magic. For I will rescue my people from your grasp. Then you will know that I am the LORD."
(When God sets the "captive free (Luke 4:18ff)," they are free from religious diatribe and
are reinforced in righteousness. THEN YOU WILL KNOW THAT I AM THE LORD!)
CHAPTER 14: (Elders and their constituents)
Turning now to group three, the reader becomes aware of the unfolding revelation as it relates to all parts of the structure of society. No stone is left unturned. One sees the depth of corruption that has operated under cover and now is uncovered. Sometimes it is necessary to uncover the termites before the structure can be put right!
Here, Ezekiel is directed to two segments of one indices. Elders and their constituents are inseparable because of the influence of the Elders on the general population. Leaders of the people are in every aspect of government and religion. Therefore, a directive to the Elders would trickle down normally to the people if accepted by the leadership. The Lord knew they would not accept Ezekiel's message; hence, Ezekiel fired across their bow and turned directly to the
Here is a perfect example of gatekeeping on the part of the Elders. Sometimes it is not what Elders choose to inform or regulate or impose on the society, but what they keep from the public. Societal "dams on information" need to be uncovered and allow the supporting citizens to realize just who and what they sustain.
Then some of the leaders of Israel visited me, and while they were there, 2 this message came to me from the LORD: 3 "Son of man, these leaders have set up idols in their hearts. They have embraced things that lead them into sin. Why should I let them ask me anything? 4 Give them this message from the Sovereign LORD: I, the LORD, will punish the people of Israel who set up idols in their hearts so they fall into sin and then come to a prophet asking for help. 5 I will do this to capture the minds and hearts of all my people who have turned from me to worship their detestable idols.
Notice first, the Elders gathered in the prophet's home to inquire of him various matters. This
message was to them and was to apply to those in his presence as well as those still in Jerusalem under the hand of Jeremiah. Once again, Ezekiel is given the task of confrontation-this is no bed of roses.
Their sin was simple to state: They had embraced idols in their hearts that facilitated sin.
Embrace is such a wonderfully intimate word. The Word of God is filled with warnings about the need to be mindful of what one embraces. (Can a man take fire to his bosom and his clothes not be burned? Proverbs 6:27)
It pays to observe how they "raised up the stumbling block of their iniquity, which caused them to fall." Should one pursue modern day leadership with these criteria, would such a matter be found?
God says, "They are on their own." They will not hear anything from Me. They are cut off from my direction and Presence.
6 "Therefore, give the people of Israel this message from the Sovereign LORD: Repent and turn away from your idols, and stop all your loathsome practices. 7 I, the LORD, will punish all those, both Israelites and foreigners, who reject me and set up idols in their hearts so they fall into sin, and who then come to a prophet asking for my advice. 8 I will turn against such people and make a terrible example of them, destroying them. Then you will know that I am the LORD. 9 And if a prophet is deceived and gives a message anyway, it is because I, the LORD, have deceived that prophet. I will stand against such prophets and cut them off from the community of Israel. 10 False prophets and hypocrites - evil people who claim to want my advice - will all be punished for their sins. 11 In this way, the people of Israel will learn not to stray from me, polluting themselves with sin. They will be my people, and I will be their God, says the Sovereign LORD."
God offers the people something He did not include in the report to the Elders: A way to
come back to the Lord, Repent! Notice their sin is the same as the Elders. They had learned well and absorbed the culture of the day. The sin of the Elders gave license for the sin of the public. "They do it, so can we." Church, does this apply today? Government does this apply now?
God promises to punish those who continue in their sin and rebellion. He will destroy them.
He will make a terrible example of them. In Isaiah it says the world will hiss at them. Observe,
if a prophet dare come to them with a "word from The Lord," God will "cut them off from the community of Israel." These false prophets must wander about in the deserts outside the territory of God's boundaries. "Cut off" is tantamount to being a living dead person.
Verse eleven continues the theme of repentance with a promise: "stop polluting yourselves" and
you will be "My people." Not the elders or societies' people, they will be My people. That is what God wants today! The amount of religious and societal pollution is enormous in these times. Repent is still the offer.
Interesting suppositions are proposed by the Lord. They are used to deflect the idea of "is there another way of escape?" "What alternatives do we the people have?" "What if we could come up with some righteous folks, would that stay the punishment (like Sodom)?"
1. Supposition One: Suppose you could come up with enough righteous folks.
4 Even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were there, their righteousness would save no one but themselves, declares the Sovereign LORD.
2. Supposition Two: Would these three men deliver us from just one of Your judgments?
Ezekiel 14:15, 16:
5 "Or suppose I were to send an invasion of dangerous wild animals to devastate the land and kill the people.
16 Those three alone would be saved, but the land would be devastated.
3. Supposition Three: Could these three keep us out of invasive war?
7 "Or suppose I were to bring war against the land, and I told enemy armies to come and destroy everything. 18 Even if these three men were in the land , the Sovereign LORD swears that they could not save the people. They alone would be saved."
4. Supposition Four: Could these three save us from the pestilence of disease?
9 "Or suppose I were to pour out my fury by sending an epidemic of disease into the land, and the plague killed people and animals alike. 20 Even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were living there, the Sovereign LORD swears that they could not save the people. They alone would be saved by their righteousness."
The Last Word on this subject is an answer to the unasked question: "Will there be any survivors?" The answer was, "Yes."
22 "Yet there will be survivors, and they will come here to join you as exiles in Babylon. You will see with your own eyes how wicked they are, and then you will feel better about what I have done to Jerusalem. 23 When you meet them and see their behavior, you will agree that these things are not being done to Israel without cause, says the Sovereign LORD."
CHAPTER 15: Trees and Vines
An interesting study in the Bible centers around the use of vines and trees. Mostly, when God represents His blessing, it involves trees. "Trees of righteousness planted by the Lord." "Tree planted by the waters." "Prosper like the palm tree." "Trees planted by the river of life in heaven." On and on, the study will take you into the most wonderful arrangements from the Lord; they are like an oasis in the desert.
Here, God calls the people of Israel vines and not trees. They grew up wild and not of His planting. He then characterizes the attributes of each. Trees can be hewn and dried and cut into
workable sturdy materials-vines are worthless in respect to usable products.
Yet, Jesus likens Himself to the true vine and His saints the branches-the planting of the Lord.
It is to this vine we are engrafted, not the wild rebellious non fruit bearing mockery. If Israel is
the unusable vine which only can be burned, then why are thousands advocating their ways?
Then this message came to me from the LORD: 2 "Son of man, how does a grapevine compare to a tree? Is a vine's wood as useful as the wood of a tree? 3 Can its wood be used for making things, like pegs to hang up pots and pans? 4 No, it can only be used for fuel, and even as fuel, it burns too quickly. 5 Vine branches are useless both before and after being put into the fire!
6 "And this is what the Sovereign LORD says: The people of Jerusalem are like grapevines growing among the trees of the forest. Since they are useless, I have set them aside to be burned! 7 And I will see to it that if they escape from one fire, they will fall into another. When this happens, you will know that I am the LORD. 8 And I will make the land desolate because my people have been unfaithful to me, says the Sovereign LORD."
By citing Jerusalem, God is using Israel's principle city to represent the whole nation, just as news media cite "the White House" to represent the USA or the Kremlin for Russia.
Being symbolized as "worthless," God's judgment is increased in intensity. Religion and Government is denigrated beyond its citizenry's worst image. Repentance perhaps seems more appealing under these circumstances.
Until Next Month,
Until Next month,
Dr. Cosby R. Oliver, PhD.
From the Mailbag:
From Glenn M., board member, and electronic data manager for OEA.
Commenting on creating media from the monthly newsletters through the years.
I tell you, going through all the past newsletters creating the videos from Kevin has been a real blessing. One forgets, as the years pass, just how much teaching and wisdom has been contained in these letters. Everyone I do blesses me more and more. I think the absorption of these teachings would be better than any seminary curriculum.
Not only facts from scripture but wisdom in their application.
I am grateful!
(We encourage you to listen to the lessons on our media site and the archives. Kevin Stoltenburg and the Gospel Outreach Association is a vital part in creating these indices. You may go directly to this area HERE.)
From: Roni H., Minnesota
Always look forward to each newsletter…it is so NOW!
Have you heard of Benjamin Baruch? Very interesting.
Read, "The Day of the Lord is at Hand."
Sending Love and blessings for all of your sharing.
(The newsletters are a form of "sharing" and involve a great deal of thought and
prayer. A number of home groups study these materials. Thanks Roni for your words of encouragement.)
From Kenith Laird., Houston
Dear Dr Oliver, I know you believe in the healing power of the Lord Jesus, so I am writing you to ask that you would please pray for my complete healing from lymphoma. I would also appreciate it if you gave this to other individuals or groups that pray for the sick. The doctor has said it is curable; however, I would like it to go away and get out of my body now. Appreciate you and everything you do.
(Many prayers have already gone out for his need, but I promised him to include his request in the next Newsletter, so here it is. I received an email for him from a lady who prayed
dynamic prayers sealing off this disease and calling for its death. It is so powerful that I
know healing is in the offing.)
From Toby Huyssen: Philippines
Dear Dr. Oliver,
We want to bring before you a special prayer request. Last year we realized that the time is coming where we need a new vehicle. The van (L300 FB) has been a car that has been essential in the operation of the mission and outreaches.
I learned how to drive in the same type of vehicle. I remember when we first got this one about 10 years ago, it was a complete miracle and testimony of God's provision. Since that time, I personally, have spent countless hours in traffic or pushing the speed to the limit of about 60-70kmh (40-45mph) in the city, province or mountains. We have used this vehicle for every short-term mission team that has come here to partner with us reaching people and doing outreaches as far as we could drive. This van has been the key to reaching the children from the 5 communities that we reach out to every week. We used this van to pick up dental patients from Tondo and bring them to a church to receive free dental care. This was the first time for 60 people to ever enter the church which was a miracle and answered prayer for the pastor. There's no way to list everything we have been able to accomplish with a safe and functional van. It has been a blessing to us and to many people in the Philippines. The sad thing is that it is no longer safe.
The real wake up call for us happened as we were driving with a team up the hill going back to our mission station. It was late and almost everyone had fallen asleep. All of a sudden everyone in the back was yelling and screaming my name. I thought a bug had flown in the back. The latch on the door broke causing the back door to fling open. One of the team members was asleep leaning on the door and woke up as he was about to fall out of the car. He was able to grab a hold of something and stay inside the car, but from that point on we realized it's time for a new vehicle.
So many things have broken beyond repair. The A/C has been broken for a long time, the locks on the doors and windows are no longer functional which makes it not very safe in traffic situations. The panels inside the car are falling off leaving the metal framework exposed. This is not good because we transport children. The engine isn't always reliable to start, we've had a lot of "adventures" with the last few teams that have come in.
Join us in praying for a new miracle car. Just like this last van has been a miracle and answered prayer. We are praying for God to do even greater things as we move forward.
Thank you for your continued love, prayers, and support!
May God bless you richly,
World Mission For Jesus and the Huyssen Families
Note: Oliver Evangelistic Association was able to respond with the complete $5000 needed for the Huyssen van due to a last minute $2000 offering from a source in N. Texas. The van will be a blessing and our regular contributors made it happen
with the blessing of an added $3000. Thanks saints!"
From Jim and Sherry Oxendine, Go To Nations:
We just returned from the ECO Conference at Zion City Church in Arusha, Tanzania. Dr. Jerry Williamson (Go To Nations President) and Jim were asked to be speakers during this conference with pastors and church leaders from many East African countries. We had services from 9 am until 2 pm every day and evening services starting at 3 pm until 10 pm. One service, I spoke on "an atmospheric shift taking place in the spirit" for 5 hours - with only a 20 minute break. We prayed for many pastors and leaders that day to step into their authority as believers and begin to manifest what God has deposited in them.
The theme of the conference was "Manifestation of Victory in Jesus". Webster's dictionary defines manifestation as "a public demonstration of power and purpose" and there were miracles taking place in every service. On the last evening we prayed for a man that was totally blind and he was totally healed.
Shortly after we left Arusha, Jason, also a GTN missionary, arrived to teach Blessed 2 Be Blessed - a seminar based on Christian business principles for business people in the church. The host church was the same church that held the Global Pathway Conference in October 2016. Jason just wrote saying that he had heard some really wonderful testimonies regarding the Global Pathway training. Several people shared with him that it has been revolutionary for their churches, and that they are implementing the things they were taught.
Brother Emmanuel, who is a leader in the men's ministry at the host church, gave a testimony about the faith promise giving teaching that we want to share with you. During the conference last October, Jason shared a testimony from Burkina Faso about an extremely poor village that wanted to contribute to missions, but complained that they had no cash whatsoever. As subsistence farmers, what little they grew, they ate. These farmers were taught about faith promise giving and it was suggested to them that, at the time of planting, they could rope off part of the field as a faith promise to God for missions. Then, whatever grew in that part of the field, they could sell and use as their offering. They actually did this and God so blessed the crops that there was an extraordinary harvest that year! Other village's crops died of drought, but God sent the rain for these crops. The area within the ropes was exceedingly blessed and there was a very visible difference - when people would ask, the villagers explained that the roped off portion was for God.
This testimony really inspired the brothers and sisters at the host church in Tanzania. Emmanuel, in particular, had just ransomed some family land that was going to be sold to strangers for about $5000. He decided to do exactly what the Burkina Faso villagers did, and made a faith promise of 50% of the harvest. He said that God did so bless the fields that neighboring people would come to just look at the fields. He stated that they harvested twenty-two 100 kilogram bags of beans (4,840 lbs. total). Emmanuel tithed 2 sacks and paid his missions faith promise of 10 sacks - worth 2 million Tanzanian shillings (about $1000 US). This left him a handy $1000 to pay the bank. And he hasn't even had the corn harvest yet which is also looking to be huge. When we commit, the Lord is faithful to provide!
A Faith Promise is a spiritual agreement between the Christian and God that, with His help, you will give a predetermined amount to the church to be used in world missions as the Lord provides.
Faith promise giving is in the Launch the Congregation session of Global Pathway Training. We have many testimonies from pastors who have implemented the training within their churches of how the congregation has responded with commitments and how the Lord blessed those commitments. If you would like to know more about this training for your church, please contact us.
A highlight for us this summer will be attending the Go To Nations Missionary Reunion that is being held in Florida. We will have the honor of worshipping with missionaries from 94 countries, as well as hearing what the Lord is doing all over the world.
Go To Nations has trained two ministers a day, every single day, for the last 35 years. One out of four of our Bible school graduates plants a church, so a new church is planted every 10 hours - usually in a town or city where there is NO CHURCH. Every 5 minutes, a Go To Nations missionary, graduate or minister lifts the life of a child, through outreach, education, feeding programs, and community projects. Finally, the result of all of that is that a NEW BELIEVER comes to Christ through someone connected with Go To Nations EVERY 11 MINUTES!! Our God is an awesome God.
Thank you for being a part of what the Lord is doing in the nations through Go To Nations.
Until All Have Been Reached,
Jim and Sherry Oxendine
Go To Nations
Donations should be sent to:
Go To Nations (904)398-6559
P. O. Box 10305 firstname.lastname@example.org
Jacksonville, Florida 32247
For Missionary #M253
Or Donate Online at www.gotonations.org/oxendine
From Larry and Marla Johnston in Guatemala:
Greetings dear friends , I pray all is well with you. I just wanted to keep you updated. I am sure you have heard that a tornado destroyed our patio cover where we do pastors' conferences.
We ask that you be in prayer with us. We are believing God for the funds. We have about 4 months to get another one built before we have another pastors' conference.
Reconstruction costs: $3,200
Here are photos after the cleanup.
Dr. OLIVER'S BOOKS ARE NOW AVAILABLE FOR THE KINDLE ON AMAZON.COM AND FOR THE NOOK AT BARNES & NOBLE!
Paperback volumes may still be ordered through our website.
To see the currently available books from Amazon, click on the cover images below.
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