An Article Based On A Sermon
22 December 2007

The Helmet of Salvation

by Jon Bowles

(PLAY FROM START)

At this time of year - Christmas time - you go past all the houses in this area, and there is the window dressing. All the houses are lit up, they are all decorated. There are lights, there's tinsel and all the other various bits and pieces. If you go on to the radio and television, and in certain cases when you go into shops, you may have read, or have read to you, certain passages of scripture. One such passage in particular that they do read a great deal is over in Luke, chapter 2. This passage is probably going to be read a great deal in the next few days, and yet I wonder how many really understand what they're reading? You look at all the window dressing, you look at all the tinsel, and all the rest of the bits and pieces that are there, and you ask the question; "Well why?" Does anybody really understand why they do this? Do they ever stop to think why they do it? Why do they actually read this particular passage here? Luke 2:8:

"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night [they have their various scenes and things, that they put in the schools and so on]. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings [or good news - the gospel] of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger." (Luke 2:8-12)

These words are parroted out, and they are used continually around this particular time of year. I want to concentrate a little bit on what the angel actually said. It says; Luke 2:11:

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David [Joseph and Mary had been going down to Bethlehem, because of their taxes, and that particular city because he was of the tribe of David.] a Saviour..." (Luke 2:11)

A Saviour. Now you can read over the top of that and say; "Oh, it's a Saviour, Christ is Saviour. Therefore it's the religious word that kind of applies to Christ." Almost like the word 'Christ'. But what does it mean? Note II Kings 13:3-5, and verse 5 in particular, where it talks about how God gave Israel a saviour to rescue them from the Syrians. That particular saviour was a rescuer, who rose up and led Israel against the Syrians, and rescued them from the Syrians.

If you notice the context here in Luke, chapter 1:67, when Zacharias is actually prophesying regarding John the Baptist, who is to proceed Christ, and he is talking about the events that were actually happening at that time. Luke 1:67:

"And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy [Breath], and prophesied, saying," (Luke 1:67)

In most cases in the original, there is no 'the', as in this particular verse, where it says Holy Spirit, it doesn't say, 'the' Holy Spirit. It says Holy Spirit, that's all it says. So here was this father, Zacharias filled with Holy Breath, and prophesied, saying: Luke 1:68:

"Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David [so here is this horn of salvation, rescue. The word Saviour is a Rescuer, the word salvation is rescue]; As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us;" (Luke 1:68-71)

He also goes on about being saved from sin as well, but within the context of being saved from sin you are also finding that, it was a rescue from enemies. It was a rescue from the foes that were besetting the nation of Israel, for the general people of Israel. So when we find here, Luke 2:11:

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour..." (Luke 2:11)

It's a Rescuer. It is somebody that is going to rescue Israel and the rest of the world as well, which is the Messiah, the Anointed One. That's what the word Christ means. Again, we read over these words and have these words Babylonized in our mind because we've heard these things parroted year in and year out at Christmas time, and that kind of thing. We lose the intent of the meaning of these words as they were originally. So, it's a Saviour, a Rescuer, which is the Messiah, the Lord. The One who is the Ruler. This is what was being said by these angels talking to the shepherds, announcing the birth of Jesus Christ.

I want to carry on with the series I've been conducting on the armour of God, and to point out, just before we go into this next piece of armour, which is the helmet of salvation, why I bring that particular passage out. Notice what it says in Ephesians 6:10:

"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye [notice 'ye', plural, not singular] may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness [or wicked spirits] in high places. Wherefore take unto you [plural, not singular] the whole armour of God, that ye [plural] may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your [plural] loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your [plural] feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;" (Ephesians 6:10-15)

It would have been 'thy' if it were singular. But it is not talking to us on a singular basis. It is the collective Church. The collective Church is to be standing in this way. Ephesians 6:16:

"Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye [plural] shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation..."(Ephesians 6:16-17)

Now the reason why I point this out, is that when we are looking at this passage, so often we will just apply it personally, and so we should. We should apply it personally, but we apply it personally as part of the collective Church. The collective Church is part of the collective world to which a Saviour, a Rescuer, was sent.

That Rescuer is not just the kind of 'away in the manger' baby of this time of year, that you find in the world outside. This is a Saviour, a Rescuer, as we will go on and see, who is going to rescue the entire earth, and put the earth back on its track - which is God's track - and show the way forward for the entire earth.

Today I want to specifically deal with how this rescue is being done by this Rescuer, this Saviour. How this helmet of salvation protects our minds from Satan. Now the subject of salvation is huge., and looking at it in an general way, and it just keeps on going and going. The entire Bible and is all about rescue from our sins. Certainly all the New Testament is about that. I'm going to concentrate on how this salvation, this rescue is in fact part of a helmet. The helmet protects the mind from Satan. This rescue is part of this entire process of protecting our minds from Satan. The points I want to deal with are:

Now a lot of these points have been dealt with before and they are all interrelated. But looking at it as a helmet, as something that is protecting our mind, and protecting us from Satan specifically, it ties these scriptures together in a way that fits this particular item of armour that we need to be concentrating on.

How Salvation Gives the Right Goal (PLAY FROM 11:23)

Turn over to Matthew, chapter 4, because Christ Himself also had to go ahead and defeat Satan, and part of this is in fact, having the right goal. Making sure that Christ also had the right goal in life, Matthew 4:8:

"Again, the devil [the slanderer] taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;" (Matthew 4:8)

And also, probably the suffering in them as well. So He could therefore have all that glory, all the kingdoms of the world could be given to Him straight away, and He could get in there straight away and He could do what He needs to do. Verse nine:

"And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me [if your direction of life is in my -Satan's - direction]. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan [enemy]: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve." (Matthew 4:9-10)

His focus, His goal, was very, very clear. He had that goal, and He had that complete focus, which was on the future. It was not on putting things right at that time. In Isaiah 59, we find this passage mentioned that talks about a helmet of salvation being used by Christ Himself. Verse 14:

"And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter." (Isaiah 59:14)

There are problems in this world that just need to be sorted out, and Christ knows the way of sorting them out, even from a human point of view. Isaiah 59:15:

"Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey [or accounted mad, as the margin says]: and the [Eternal] saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment. And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak." (Isaiah 59:15-17)

He will then be able to go and to actually sort out and put right the things that He could were wrong. He put on salvation, He put on rescue, as the right Rescuer at the right time. He could therefore see forward and see what needed to be done at that time. Isaiah 59:18:

"According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence. So shall they fear the name of the [Eternal] from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the [Eternal] shall lift up a standard against him. And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the [Eternal]. As for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the [Eternal]; My spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the [Eternal], from henceforth and for ever." (Isaiah 59:18-21)

Now He could see that. He could see that, looking forward into the future. He could see that rescue. So when He was in confrontation with Satan, the salvation that He could see, the rescue that He could see - He therefore recognized and focused His mind on His future role. He was able to reject Satan and his offer to go ahead and sort it out now. Again, we have got to have the same thing. We have got to make sure that we understand that the rescue will come. This world will be rescued. But it will be rescued in God's way, and in God's timing.

We go down to Africa, and we see situations in Africa where we would love to be able to just jump in there and help. We could, we could do the missionary bit, and come in with various bits of goods and we could go ahead and have a huge church in virtually any nation down in Africa. But is that the direction of God? Is that the way of God? Well it says in John 6:44:

"No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him..." (John 6:44)

You have got to be selective. God is only working with a certain, select group at the moment. We have got to understand that. When we go down, it is not a case of Jon Bowles going down there, getting a Bible, looking white, and getting on a street, and yelling and shouting and attracting people's attention and preaching, in the street. If I did that, we would have a church of thousands, quite literally, thousands. It would be very easy to do that, dead easy, and some people do. But you know, that is not the way, that is not the plan, that is not salvation. Not the way God determines. He has a plan, and understanding that plan, understanding that salvation, the rescue, and the way in which God is going to do that rescue allows us to have that right goal, and to make sure that we go towards that right goal. Philippians 3:7:

"But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord..." (Philippians 3:7-8 )

Now notice what he is saying; again, we tend to read over this, like water off a duck's back. "Christ Jesus my Lord". The word 'Christ', that is the Messiah. The word 'Jesus'? It means YHWH is my Rescuer. That is why we were given that word. My Lord, the One who is over me, as we will go on and see in a minute. Philippians 3:8:

"...for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death [being the same way as He is, dying and therefore living again]; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead [the same way as He did]. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:8-14)

So the focus is forward. The entire focus of Paul's life was forward because of the understanding that he had. The understanding of the rescue. The understanding of the salvation. That helmet is there and it protects the head. It allows the head to be focused in the right direction. It allows the eyes to be protected as well and be focused in the right direction, not off on the side somewhere. Philippians 3:20:

"For our [conduct or citizenship] is on [high]; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:" (Philippians 3:20)

The Saviour, the One who will do the rescuing. So it is something that is in the future. The true rescue is not just now. We are not just rescued from sin now, but we are also looking forward as a collective Church to a rescue of the world as a whole in the future. It is that focus forward that allows us to understand these verses. As it says here, we look forward from that perspective to that Saviour, that Rescuer, the Lord Jesus Christ;

"Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able to subdue all things to himself." (Philippians 3:21)

We will be ready then to assume the roles that are necessary. The same way as Christ will be ready to assume the role in the future to govern and rule and have the true rescue. It's not going to be some half-hearted attempt, which would be all that we would do at this particular time.

You do wonder, when you think of how people generally in the world - what goals do they have? How do they look at life? What is life all about? They look at a world, and all its problems, but all they tend to have are physical goals. It's window dressing; the tinsel, the tree, the Father Xmas, all the various 'away in a manger' ideas. They read the passage we read over in Luke 2, but it is all window dressing, only physical goals. But at the end of the life, then you face reality. You say, "Okay, what happens then?" There is an insanity there, as it is coming from an insane mind, the mind that is broadcasting in this world. It has the world going down its way, and it is an insane mind.

Yet, we have this revelation that has been given to us. The very plan of God, which will give true salvation. "The Saviour" really means just that. It is not just from sin, even though it includes sin. It includes all the various aspects. Because what is sin? It is going against the Word of God, going against the Way of God. It covers absolutely everything within this world. It is applying the very mind of God to the earth and the world and everything.

The Authority of Our Saviour (PLAY FROM 22:50)

This salvation places our Saviour, our Rescuer, in authority over us. As mentioned before, the very word Jesus is Joshua or Jehoshua, and it comes from YHWH which is the Rescuer, YHWH saves. Turn over to Acts 3:1:

"Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms [he put out his hand, and he asked for a hand out]. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name [by the authority] of Jesus [Messiah] of Nazareth rise up and walk." (Acts 3:1-6)

Get up and walk. In many cases that is actually what we are saying. We are saying in the name, by the authority of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, of Nazareth, all of us have got to get up and walk in a certain direction, in a certain way. It is interesting that this miracle, which caused such a stir, involved that. It meant getting him up and making him walk. He got up and walked, and the miracle was therefore acknowledged, and seen by so many people. But when he was called before the authorities for doing so, and they were held in prison over night, Acts 4:5 says:

"And it came to pass on the morrow, that their rulers, and elders, and scribes, And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem [remember this was just after Christ had been crucified, a matter of fifty days or so before,] And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this [by what authority have you done this]? Then Peter, filled with Holy [Breath], said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole; Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel [here is Peter who ran scared at Christ's crucifixion, and that was a matter of weeks before this event], that by the name of Jesus [that's Joshua, YHWH saves, the Eternal saves] Christ [the Anointed One, the Messiah] of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole." (Acts 4:5-10)

He really laid it on them! Verse 11:

"This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner [they knew that psalm, the passage that he is talking about. Psalm 118:22]. Neither is there salvation in any other [any other name, any other authority]: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." (Acts 4:11-12)

That is how important this particular name is. And what is the name? The Eternal saves. That's where it comes from. Our rescue comes from The Eternal. The Eternal was the One who became Joshua, Jesus, with that name, The Eternal saves. He was also the Christ, the Anointed One, from the Eternal's Spirit that also filled Him without measure, and He is also the Lord. He is the One who is over us, ruling over us.

Turn over to I Thessalonians, chapter 5. How much of this really sinks home, if anything at all, to people outside who go ahead and read that passage in Luke 2? It just doesn't mean anything at all, and yet this should mean a great deal to everyone of us. Because here in I Thessalonians 5, which comes straight after a passage where Paul is talking about the resurrection, and how in fact we should; "Wherefore comfort one another with these words." (I Thessalonians 4:18). Chapter 5, and verse one;

"But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness [this group of people, the ones being called at this particular time, every single one of us who understands the truth are not in darkness], that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch [be alert] and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation." (I Thessalonians 5:1-8)

So part of the actual preparation that we need right now as we are waiting for this time to come is to make sure that we have the breastplate of faith, and love as it says here, and a helmet, the hope of salvation. The hope of this rescue. Looking forward to that rescue. I Thessalonians 5:9:

"For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation [rescue] by our Lord Jesus Christ," (I Thessalonians 5:9)

Now He is not just a Saviour, not just a Rescuer, He is also a Lord. He is the One that is over us. Now, you think about a helmet. What happens with that helmet? It's put over your head, it is on top, it covers your head. That authority from that helmet is going down and it is over us. That is also another part of the symbolism of this helmet of salvation. It is a fact that the Rescuer, is placed in authority over us. We have got to understand the names of that Rescuer. It is in that name, that we understand the things that we understand, and that we are rescued because of that name. There is no other name by which you can be saved, by which you can be rescued, as we just read in Acts 4:12. It says here in I Thessalonians 5:9 we:

"...obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ. Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him." (I Thessalonians 5:9-10)

Whether we watch or sleep, whether we are alert, or whether we are asleep in death, we should live together with Him, so that the entire plan is able to be conducted. Turn to II Corinthians 10:3:

"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh [when we are looking at Ephesians 6, we are talking about a warfare, about an armour of God that we are taking on so that we can conduct a warfare]: (For the weapons of our warfare are not [fleshly], but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)" (II Corinthians 10:3-4)

Now the problem is that so often there are strong holds there that need to be pulled down, need to be subjugated underneath our Rescuer. Underneath the One who dictates what we should do and how we should walk, and the way in which we should conduct ourselves. II Corinthians 10:5:

"Casting down imaginations [thoughts or reasonings], and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;" (II Corinthians 10:5)

So we are to bring every thought into obedience of Christ. The obedience of the Anointed One. The picture is the helmet that is over the mind, the anointing. Where did the anointing used to go, even in the case of the present Queen? The anointing oil was put over the head. Even when we anoint somebody for an illness, we take oil and put it onto the forehead. So it is saying here in II Corinthians 10:5:

"Casting down imaginations [thoughts or vain reasonings], and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of [The Anointed One, The] Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled [filled to the brim, filled right up]." (II Corinthians 10:5-6)

In Romans it talks about slavery, and how we can either be a slave to righteousness or we can be a slave to sin. Quite frankly, we don't understand slavery today, and because we don't understand slavery we don't really fully understand this subject.

There is a difference between the UK and the US. Being here in the UK, because we understand a little bit about being under a sovereign. It is the Kingdom of God, it's not going to be the Republic of God.

I keep coming across this idea of rulership from the bottom up. That is not the way it works. That is not the way it is, it is from God down. If the person over us goes astray and is no longer under the authority of God, you don't get a ground-swell movement to rise up. You remove yourself from beneath them, because they are no longer the Government of God and you put yourself back under the Government of God again. It is the Kingdom of God, and we become a slave, to God. If the servants, the ministry I'm talking about, the ministers are a slave to God, ministers, servants of God. We have got to make sure that we remain in that particular position all the time. As I say, we don't understand slavery today. I think we are negligent in this particular area.

Salvation places our Saviour, our Rescuer, in authority over us. The helmet of salvation over our heads is something over the top of us. That is necessary to the "Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;" (II Corinthians 10:5)

That we put ourself genuinely under that, completely, and are submissive to the ways and the will of God. It is something that, in our liberal, Western, democratic nations, we have a real problem with. It reflects itself in the Church. Don't think it doesn't, it does. It reflects itself in the Laodicean attitude of mind, because the Laodicean attitude of mind is, let the people decide. The people make the decisions, and it's rulership from the bottom up. That is not the Way of God. That is not the thinking of God.

This helmet of salvation places our Saviour, our Rescuer, in authority over us as the One over the head. As the helmet, covering the very head itself. Therefore, every thought going on underneath that helmet should indeed be the thinking of that Rescuer,that Saviour.

Being Reconciled by His Blood (PLAY FROM 36:54)

We are reconciled by that Saviour's blood. We are reconciled to the Father. Turn over to Revelation, chapter 5. Now this particular passage of scripture can be read in a number of different ways. It's translated in a number of different ways. It is quite clear that it is the people of God who are made kings and priests in the future. It is not some angelic spirit beings, that are there, but if you notice what it actually says here in Revelation 5:1:

"And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals." (Revelation 5:1)

This is the book of Revelation - the book of revealing. The understanding of this book is actually revealed through Christ. We have got to make sure we understand that. It did not come to us by human revelation. It came to us by divine revelation. 'The Book of Revelation Unveiled at Last!.' That understanding didn't come from a human source!

"And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon. And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns [seven governments] and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne. And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours [incense], which are the prayers of saints." (Revelation 5:2-8)

They had the prayers of the saints - the incense - and these they then offered to the Lamb. Revelation 5:9:

"And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God..." (Revelation 5:9)

These words are coming from the incense, from the prayers of the saints. You have redeemed us to God. Now it can be translated differently, but I think it is probably better understood that it's coming from the actual prayers of the saints. Revelation 5:9:

"...by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;" (Revelation 5:9)

It is clearly human beings it's talking about. It's not talking about these elders or beasts being formerly human, they were spirit beings. Revelation 5:10:

"And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth [notice what it does say; have redeemed them to God by the blood out of every kindred and tongue]. And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands;" (Revelation 5:10-11)

So we are looking here how they were redeemed. They were bought back. They were purchased back to God. Every single one of us that is destined to become a king and priest has been purchased by that blood. The penalty for going Satan's way has been paid. Therefore, this is part of the salvation process. It is not being saved, but it is part of the salvation process. It allows the salvation process to actually take place. Go back to Acts 20:17 and we find when Paul was in Miletus, and it says:

"And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church [here are the ministers coming across to see Paul]. And when they were come to him, he said unto them, Ye know, from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons, Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews: And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house [teaching them how I am teaching now - he would get up there publically and address them, and he would also go individually, and actually talk in-house], Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ." (Acts 20:17-21)

So he would go ahead and explain the fundamentals to them. The whole thing was based on repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.

When I was down in Kenya recently the actual counselling that had to be conducted for baptism had to be done in almost record time. When you are faced with that, when you are faced with literally a matter of hours before you have a number of people requesting baptism, you have to ask yourself, what is important? What are the fundamentals? Where do you go back to the foundation in the area of baptism? It is this; repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. If they understand what that actually means - a repentance toward God, a turning from our way back to God. That is the repentance, it's a turning that is necessary. The faith towards our Lord Jesus Christ, the faith to trust Christ in the future. To not only pay the penalty by His shed blood, which is part of it, but it is also in the future to go ahead and have Christ lead and guide them as newly-begotten brethren. This is the element, this is the foundation. This is the thing that I had to concentrate on at that particular time. It says In Acts 20:27:

"For I have not shunned to declare unto you [the ministers there] all the counsel of God [he really filled them in, and showed them the way of God]. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy [Spirit] hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood." (Acts 20:27-28)

So who is the Church? Every single one that has been purchased by that blood. It is not just a case of the blood covering the sin. It is the purchasing nature of it. This is what it's talking about in Revelation 5:9:

"And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;" (Revelation 5:9)

That is the Church, redeemed, bought back, purchased. As I say, we don't understand slavery, but that is exactly what has happened. We have been purchased from following Satan's way, Satan's mind, Satan's attitude. We have been purchased by that blood to cover those sins, and then pointing us in the right direction, allowing us to go in the right direction. So going to Revelation 14:1 we find this group of people, the Church, and the group to which we also aspire and should be all part of:

"And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion [here is that same symbolism as we found back in Revelation 5], and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads [with this Lamb are 144,00 that have purchased by His blood, purchased to be kings and priests]. And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth [so the 144,000 that were redeemed from the earth]. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins [spiritually]. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God." (Revelation 14:1-5)

They are without fault, they have been redeemed, they have been purchased. They have their sins completely forgiven and they will be able to walk from that point forward.

I always remember one particular incidence when I was self-employed, and I failed to pay National Insurance contributions. I had failed to pay these contributions for some years because we were struggling financially at that particular time. I think we hadn't paid National Insurance contributions for something like five years. It was a lot of money that needed to be paid. I went to see them, thinking all my savings were about to be wiped out. He looked at my profits for each of the five years. He said, "You can in fact elect not to pay, because your profits are so low." This was back in the early 80's. I remember going into this meeting with this great cloud over my head, and coming out having that cloud totally removed, because the whole thing had been wiped out. He said, "You don't need to pay this. It has already been paid for you. It's gone. It can be set aside." So, here I was going in initially with this cloud and coming out with it completely removed.

When I see passages like this, where it talks about how these were redeemed from among men, how they were bought back from among men. That's the way I look at it. My mind goes back to that time when I was going in, in one way, thinking that I was going to have to pay several thousand pounds, and all the money we had been saving would have been wiped out, and then coming away with my savings still intact and being able to go ahead and carry on. That's what redeemed means. It means to be purchased back. It means to be given a new start. These firstfruits are given this new start. They have their sins for having gone Satan's way, removed. Those sins are wiped out on repentance.

Turn over to Romans, chapter 3. The whole thing also means that you can combat Satan, and his way. Not only are you able to be saved, into the future, but all the past is also wiped out. It is part of the saving process, as it says in Romans 3:23:

"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;" (Romans 3:23)

It's not just like me not paying my National Insurance for awhile. Every single last one of us is guilty. Every single last one of us has this debt. All of us have sinned. All have come short of the glory of God. Romans 3:24:

"Being justified [being made righteous] freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus [buying back, paying the penalty for us, allowing us to walk free]: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation [a mercy seat] through faith in his blood [we have that faith in His blood, and we are able to have the past completely blotted out], to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;" (Romans 3:24-25)

It is not sins of the future. It is sins that are past, all the past. It wasn't the case of me walking into the National Insurance office and saying "I owe this money." They didn't say, "Oh, well, okay fine, you can carry on. It doesn't matter how much you earn, you can carry on and not pay from now on out." That's not the way it works. It was the sins that are past. It was the amount that I owed up to that point, that when they looked at it, were able to be wiped clean. It is the same here, as it says in Romans 3:25:

"...to declare his righteousness for the remission [the paying back] of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God. To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness..." (Romans 3:25-26)

That we can stand clean. That we can get on our knees, clean. We can get in contact with God, clean. That at any time, once we repent of sins that are past, that sin is wiped out and we can come before God having that sin paid. That is how we stand. That is the way in which we are able to approach God. Romans 3:26:

"...that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith [we have trust in that sacrifice]. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith [apart from] the deeds of the law." (Romans 3:26-28)

In other words, you don't pay. I didn't have to go ahead and pay for those missed years, it was wiped out. The slate was wiped clean. It is the same here. It is not a case of you are now working to go ahead and pay it back. That is not what was necessary. But it doesn't mean to say that I can go ahead from this point forward and not pay. Of course I've got to pay, because it's a legal obligation. Romans 3:29:

"Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith. Do we then make void [abolish] the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law." (Romans 3:29-31)

Did we get rid of the law of the National Insurance by having the debt wiped out? Of course not. The National Insurance is there - much as I would like to think that the National Insurance had been wiped out that way, unfortunately it's not! It's exactly the same thing. The sins that are past are wiped clean, but the national law remains. Life from this point forward has got to be obedient to that law. The way in which that is done, we will come to in a little while, but over in Romans 5:6 it says:

"For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly [we were, we were ungodly]. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us [He showed us the kind of love that He has], in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us [He blotted that out, the same as my National Insurance Contributions that I missed out, I was guilty, but they were wiped clean]. Much more then, being now justified by his blood... [that justification, we stand now sinless before God, able to access God, verse 10] For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son..." (Romans 5:6-10)

So, we are reconciled. The death of Christ reconciles us to the Father. It allows us to approach the Father. It allows us to get on our knees and pray sinless, because the past is wiped out, wiped clean, wiped clear.

Being Saved by His Life (PLAY FROM 55:41)

The fact is that we are saved though by His life. Let's just go into this section a little bit more. Let's pick up in Romans 4:20, where it is talking about Abraham:

"He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform [remember, we are talking about being saved, being rescued, by His life, the antithesis of Satan's life]. And therefore it was imputed [counted]..."(Romans 4:20-22)

In the original (Strong's 3049) it doesn't mean 'imputed', with our English connotation. Imputed gives the implication that it is not really deserved. When you say something is imputed to you, it is given to you when you don't really deserve it at all. The word actually is 'counted'. Romans 4:22:

"And therefore it [this faith] was [counted] to him for righteousness [it was understood that he was going in the right way to be able to be righteous]. Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was counted to him; But for us also, to whom it shall be [counted], if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences [so all our past sins were wiped clean], and was raised again for our justification." (Romans 4:22-25)

Now justification in that particular passage means a bit more than just wiping out past sins. It means all the whole gamut of justification. It means the whole spread, because it then goes on and says in Romans 5:1:

"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ [we stand at this time free of sin, all our past is wiped out, we are justified in that way]: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in [trials] also: knowing that [trials] worketh patience [while we stand in this position, we also have the faith in God to help us through the trials, to develop the kind of character that He is looking for]; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy [Spirit] which is given unto us." (Romans 5:1-5)

So we are looking here at that love and he mentions in Romans 5:8:

"But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us [that same love is actually given to us by the very Spirit of God]. Much more then, being now justified by his blood [having that past wiped out], we shall be saved from wrath through him [going forward now, we have the faith in the life of Christ]. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life." (Romans 5:8-10)

It is like the National Insurance. I go in there with a big cloud over my head. I get the past wiped clean. But I then say; "Right, from this point forward, now what do I do?" Well the man who is going ahead and giving me advice - and wiping clean the slate - can also say, "Well this is how you conduct yourself. This is how you live your life in order to fulfil the obligations of keeping the National Insurance."

This is all part of the whole package. This is why, not only are we reconciled to the Father by the blood of Christ, we are also saved by His life. We are given the information. We are given the power. We are given the same kind of life that He led, to live from that point forward as well. This is why faith is involved in this entire process. In Ephesians 5:24, you have this section;

"Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word [we have been reconciled by His death; we are saved by His life. The helmet of salvation is the washing of water by the Word, by the living Word of God], That he might present it to himself a glorious church..." (Ephesians 5:24-27)

Now this is the aim of Christ. This is why the helmet of salvation is there. This is why the washing of the water by the Word is there. This is what people seem to misunderstand. They feel that because it is impossible to go ahead and keep God's Law, God's Spiritual Law. - the law is spiritual, but we are of the flesh - therefore, it is impossible for us to keep it humanly speaking. It is therefore kind of imputed to us. We are somehow given the understanding that we do the best we can, and God will make up the difference. That is not the way it works! Notice what it says here, and it says it very clearly indeed. Ephesians 5:27:

"That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish." (Ephesians 5:27)

Now we need to understand that. It is not a case of imputed righteousness. Yes, we are counted righteous standing at this particular point. Our past sins are wiped out, but as it says over in Romans 5:10:

"For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life." (Romans 5:10)

It is the indwelling of the Spirit of God. It says in verse 5:

"And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy [Spirit] which is given unto us." (Romans 5:5)

We have faith in God as the Creator. This is salvation, this is being rescued totally. Having the past blotted out, and the future rescue as well. I want you to notice here in Ephesians 5:27, that it says:

"That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish." (Ephesians 5:27)

That is what Christ is determined to do. When you read in Revelation about the Church, about when the Church has made herself ready, her garments are white, totally. You say, "Oh well, wash them in the blood of the Lamb." Yes, fine, you do. Yes, that covers sins that are past, but from this point forward, that has got to be there.

As was brought out before (Matthew 5:48). we are to be perfect, as our Father in heaven is perfect. We are to become perfect, holy, righteous character. It is not a con job that is to be done. It is not, "Oh we nearly get there, but He kind of makes allowances." That is not the way it works. We are to become perfectly holy righteous character, and it is possible to do that. Here in Matthew 19:16 it says:

"And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?"

It's almost a flippant remark. Here was Christ walking along, and this individual comes up to Him. He is obviously dressed very well, and he says; "...Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?" (Matthew 19:16) "You have been talking about eternal life, and I would like that. What should I do? How much do I have to pay? What kind of things do I have to do? How do I do it?" And Christ said to him,"" Who are you calling good? You have got to understand - there is only One that is good, and that is God. But if you want to talk about entering into life - well, that's fine...keep the commandments" (verse 17 paraphrased)

The guy comes back and he says, "Which commandments are you talking about?" He says, "Honour your father and mother, love your neighbour as yourself, do no murder, you shall not commit adultery, these commandments." He says, "But I've done that, right from my youth, from my Bar Mitzvah, I have carried on and kept these commandments."

Then Christ says to him, "Okay fine, if you want to be perfect, here you go, this is for you, this is what you need to do. If you have kept all these commandments, this shouldn't be very difficult for you." This conversation between the rich young ruler and Christ was going back and forth, adn we have got probably just the tip of the iceberg.

Christ said, "Okay fine, if you feel you have done that, one thing that you might want to consider - the only thing you really need to do is just sell everything that you've got and give it to the poor, and come, follow me."

You can imagine his face drop. Yet that's what it took. That is what was necessary for him, for that particular individual. Then it says in Matthew 19:23:

"Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." (Matthew 19: 23-24)

In other words, the rich man comes in and tries to buy his way in. He tries to manipulate things. He tries to shuffle things around. He tries to almost bargain with Christ. "What good things should I do to get eternal life?" Christ said; "...It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle [He meant it literally, this is no kind of postern gate where they take the load off!], than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." (Matthew 19:24)

"When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? [If you read the other accounts of this, they were just amazed beyond measure, they were completely, totally bowled over by what He was actually saying] But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible [being righteous enough is impossible]; but with God all things are possible." (Matthew 19:25-26)

What is He talking about? "When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved?" (Matthew 19:25) In other words, rescued. Who can be rescued from this life that we have...that ends in death? Who can be rescued from that? If you have got to get a camel through the eye of a needle, that's impossible. But, as Christ said; "...With men this is impossible..." (Matthew 19:26) It is totally impossible. You have got to become perfect as the Father in heaven is perfect.

The wiping of our life of sin clean up to this point is done by the blood of Christ, but the life led from this point forward is done by the faith of Christ, faith in the creative power of God and it is done by the power of that very Spirit of God. The love of God shed abroad in our hearts by that Spirit. That is the only way this miracle can be performed. That is the only thing that can happen - no other way of doing it. Absolutely none. With man it is impossible. You will never, never work hard enough, and no matter what laws we keep, or how good we are, we will never become good enough. The only way we can do this is to come before God and ask for His Spirit. And it is the indwelling of that Spirit, the love of God shed abroad in our hearts that will then convert us from human to God.

I don't think we in the church even now, really understand this. Remember the incident (mentioned in a previous sermon) when Ian Henderso was talking to Mr Armstrong? Mr Armstrong was in Bricket Wood, giving a Bible study and he was pounding the table in front of him, and he was addressing his remarks directly to the first three rows. The lecturers, the ministers, the evangelists, all these people sitting in the first three rows. A friend of Ian Henderson noticed just who who it was that Mr Armstrong was addressing, and he was saying, "YOU DO NOT GET IT. YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHAT I'M SAYING."

It was that following Sunday when Mr Armstrong came around to look at some photographs and Ian Henderson asked him, he said, "When you were commenting on the Friday night about we're just not getting it, what exactly do you mean? What is it?"

Mr. Armstrong picked up one of the photographs and he said, "Let's just take this example. Let's take this photograph. This photograph is made out of silver. Silver has got to be mined. The mining destroys the earth. There is nothing in this world, and it doesn't matter what you cover, all the things that are in this world, nothing is going to remain as it is. It has got to be changed, and we just do not understand, and what people do not grasp and they do not get, just how great a change that is."

When we are looking here in Matthew 19, to this day, people do not understand this. They do not understand what Mr Armstrong was getting at, at that particular time when he said, "We are not getting it!" To this day we still do not get it. Because we cannot do, as it says in Matthew ...what good thing must I DO, to inherit eternal life?"

Christ was saying to him, "You can't be good enough humanly. There is no human goodness that is going to give you eternal life." If that is all that we have, we will die. As I said, evangelists, right the way through the time of trouble within the Church did not understand this. They did not grasp this. They did not get to grips with this. Neither do we in many cases.

The goodness has got to come from God. We have got to become converted and so we are looking at this helmet of salvation protecting us from the ideas of Satan. Satan's life fills this entire earth. Satan's life fills every single facet of our society. The only way we can have the kind of life that is ready then to inherit the Kingdom in the future, without spot, without blemish, without any such thing, is that love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.

Even though I say this, and go over this and over this and over this, again, and again and again, we still in the Church do no get it! We don't really understand it. I notice this by the things people say. We cannot go ahead and be righteous enough humanly. We have got to go to God for that. We have got to therefore use that sacrifice of Christ to allow us to get on our knees. It is then from that point forward, the life of Christ that is lived within us. We walk, as if in Christ. It is only that, and it is the life of the very Spirit of God within us that allows us to be good enough, because only God is good. That is what is being brought out here.

I have said to ministers in the past, I have pointed this out to them, and they say, "Yeah, but it says, keep the commandments." Yes, but it's not just keeping the commandments, it's how do you keep them? Human keeping of the commandments does not get us saved. As the disciples said, who then can be saved?

Salvation doesn't come by keeping the commandments. Do we understand that? Salvation comes from God, by the love of God shed abroad in our hearts. That love will then keep God's commandments. But it is that goodness that does it. It is not our righteousness. It is not our goodness.

Defeating Human Nature (PLAY FROM 1:15:19)

Over in Genesis 2, Mr Armstrong went over the two trees - over, and over and over and over again, and we simply did not understand it. But that was what he was getting at; the two trees, we have got to have the love of God shed abroad in our hearts, that is the tree of life. The other one is the tree of death. Any other solution will bring us death, because we have got to totally defeat human nature. Totally, without spot, blemish, or any such thing. The whole thing has got to go. As it says here in Genesis 2:16:

"And the [Eternal] God commanded the man [this was Jesus Christ] saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof [dying you will die, that's what the margin says, and that's what it means] thou shalt surely die." (Genesis 2:16-17)

At the precise time that you start taking that to yourself, then you begin a process which will end in death. You will start dying. You will start running down. Your entire metabolism will be purely physical. There will be nothing spiritual there, because you never had access to the Spirit of Life. Therefore the entire direction of your life is leading to one thing, and that one thing is death. An entire life just running down, and from that precise time, the moment you take that, then dying you will die.

We've all taken that tree, all of us, every single last one of us. Now when we're first born we don't have human nature, but within a matter of months we hook up to Satan's broadcast. That broadcast then starts to influence us and we listen to Satan the same way as Eve listened to Satan.

We have got to become brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ. We have got to become a bride of Jesus Christ, of the same type, the same kind as Christ. Christ is of the God kind. Hebrews 2:10:

"For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons [and daughters by implication] unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one [they are one family]: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren [we are part of that one family], Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto the. And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me. Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy [nullify is a better translation] him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;" (Hebrews 2:10-14)

Now the helmet of salvation that we have - putting Christ as the Saviour over us, as the authority over us - this also helps to destroy the devil, his power over death. What is Christ? The Saviour, He is the Rescuer, the One that blots out the past sins, but He is also the One that gives us the Living Word and washes us by the waters of that Word, so that we become without spot or blemish or any such thing. It is done through the power of the very Spirit of God. The love of God shed abroad in our hearts by that Spirit. Hebrews 2:14:

"Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy [or nullify] him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage." (Hebrews 2:14-15)

That is salvation. That is the Plan of God. That is what it is all about. If you remember how Christ, when He approached Lazarus' tomb, He wept. Why? Because He could see all the Jews crying. He could see them all beside themselves with grief, and yet He understood death. He said Lazarus sleeps, and they laughed Him to scorn. He was, he was asleep. He was waiting for the resurrection from the dead.

That resurrection from the dead couples with all the various other elements of the Plan of God. It is that helmet of salvation that keeps us on track, that puts us underneath the Saviour, underneath the Rescuer, underneath that authority. It reminds us of the blood that covers the sins of the past. It reminds us of the life that we have to have from this point forward, so that we may be of the same kind as this Individual. Romans 8:1:

"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." (Romans 8:1-2)

It is not a case of just sin and death and sacrifices and the various things that are done by a ritualistic Jew. It is a case that the life that is in Christ, in the Messiah, in the One whose name means ' The Eternal Saves', in that flesh, and walking in that flesh that has made me free of the law of sin and death. Romans 8:3:

"For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh [we've got to walk in a different way]: That the righteousness of the law might be [filled to the full] in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit [they are walking according to the Spirit and the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Spirit]. For they that are after the flesh [set their minds after] the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit." (Romans 8:3-5)

We are plugged into the vine. We have our minds plugged in. We are able to have access through the blood of Christ, that has purchased us. We have access to the Father. We have access therefore to this love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Spirit of God. Romans 8:6:

"For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit..." (Romans 8:6-9)

If we are in the Church, we've got our minds focused in a different direction. Romans 8:13:

"For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die [why? Because you take to yourself the knowledge of good and evil and dying you will die]: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God." (Romans 8:13-14)

And in versee 29:

"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [now the ones He foreknew are the ones that are called from the preceding verse] to be conformed to the image of his Son [He predestinated them to be conformed to that image, so that they would be the same kind, the Church, to be resurrected as the very Bride of Christ], that he might be the firstborn among many brethren [all of the same kind, of the God kind]. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified [He paid the past penalties of sin]: and whom he justified, them he also glorified." (Romans 8:29-30)

Those He also washed with the waters of the Word, and so they became without spot or blemish or any such thing, and were able to be glorified and resurrected as glorified Spirit Beings. Romans 8:31:

"What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth [it is God's prerogative to do that]. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again..." (Romans 8:31-34)

It is not just the death of Christ paying the past sins, He is risen again to give this life. This life that is by the love of God, shed abroad in our hearts by the very Spirit of God. It is a totally, totally different view of life, completely different from anything that you are going to find in the world. Romans 8:34:

"...It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall [trial], or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? [These things will come on this world and we need to hold onto these words] As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us [even in these things we can conquer it, we can be saved, we can be rescued]. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers..." (Romans 8:34-38)

In Ephesians 6:12, we read of these principalities and powers, these wicked spirits in high places.

"...nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other [creation], shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:38-39)

So there is nothing, absolutely nothing that will stop us from being rescued, because this Individual, this One that is called the Messiah, that means Christ, Jesus, which means 'the Eternal Saves', is also our Lord. The One who is over us, who is like a helmet of salvation that is a covering helmet which is above us, that we are subject to.

There is absolutely nothing that can stop God's purpose, because of our Sovereign, because of our Lord, because of our Saviour, our Rescuer.