Archives For Exhortation

What Is Biblical Worship?

September 15, 2021 — Leave a comment

Looking at every occurrence of various forms of the word “worship” in Scripture, seven passages in the NT stand out to me as key statements about what worship is. Interestingly, they are from only two books of the NT.

Earthly Worship in the Gospel of Matthew

Matt. 8:2 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.

Matt. 9:18 While he spake these things unto them, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live.

Matt. 14:33 Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.

Matt. 15:25 Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.

These statements reveal that earthly worship includes praying to God and exclaiming truths to Him about who He is.

Heavenly Worship in Revelation

Rev. 7:11-12 And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, 12 Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

Rev. 11:16-17 And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, 17 Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.

Rev. 19:4 And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia.

These passages are especially important because they reveal to us what the perfect worship in heaven looks like.

Based on these passages, we must understand that worship especially includes giving thanks to God, attributing glory to Him, and saying, “Amen,” and “Amen, Alleluia.”

Exhortation

Let us base our understanding of what biblical worship is from these key passages about earthly worship and heavenly worship. Let us also be diligent to say “Amen” and “Amen, Alleluia” regularly in our worship.

 

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

If you consider yourself to be a Christian, do you also consider yourself to be a saint of God?

If not, I encourage you to consider carefully that the NT speaks of Christians as being saints at least 47 times!

Acts

1. Acts 9:13 Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem:

2. Acts 9:32 And it came to pass, as Peter passed throughout all quarters, he came down also to the saints which dwelt at Lydda.

3. Acts 9:41 And he gave her his hand, and lifted her up, and when he had called the saints and widows, presented her alive.

4. Acts 26:10 Which thing I also did in Jerusalem: and many of the saints did I shut up in prison, having received authority from the chief priests; and when they were put to death, I gave my voice against them.

Pauline Epistles

1. Rom. 1:7 To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

2. Rom. 8:27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

3. Rom. 12:13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.

4. Rom. 15:25 But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.

5. Rom. 15:26 For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.

6. Rom. 15:31 That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints;

7. Rom. 16:2 That ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you: for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also.

8. Rom. 16:15 Salute Philologus, and Julia, Nereus, and his sister, and Olympas, and all the saints which are with them.

9. 1 Cor. 1:2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:

10. 1 Cor. 6:1 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?

11. 1 Cor. 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

12. 1 Cor. 14:33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

13. 1 Cor. 16:1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye.

14. 1 Cor. 16:15 I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,)

15. 2 Cor. 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia:

16. 2 Cor. 8:4 Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.

17. 2 Cor. 9:1 For as touching the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you:

18. 2 Cor. 9:12 For the administration of this service not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God;

19. 2 Cor. 13:13 All the saints salute you.

20. Eph. 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:

21. Eph. 1:15 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints,

22. Eph. 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

23. Eph. 2:19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;

24. Eph. 3:8 Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ;

25. Eph. 3:18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;

26. Eph. 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

27. Eph. 5:3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;

28. Eph. 6:18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

29. Phil. 1:1 Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:

30. Phil. 4:21 Salute every saint in Christ Jesus. The brethren which are with me greet you.

31. Phil. 4:22 All the saints salute you, chiefly they that are of Caesar’s household.

32. Col. 1:2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

33. Col. 1:4 Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints,

34. Col. 1:12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:

35. Col. 1:26 Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints:

36. 1 Thess. 3:13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.

37. 2 Thess. 1:10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.

38. 1 Tim. 5:10 Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints‘ feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work.

39. Phlm. 1:5 Hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord Jesus, and toward all saints;

40. Phlm. 1:7 For we have great joy and consolation in thy love, because the bowels of the saints are refreshed by thee, brother.

Non-Pauline Epistles

1. Heb. 6:10 For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.

2. Heb. 13:24 Salute all them that have the rule over you, and all the saints. They of Italy salute you.

3. Jude 1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.

Exhortation

The NT abundantly teaches that Christians are saints of the Lord. If you are a Christian, you are a saint of God. Are you walking worthy of your calling to be a saint of the Lord (cf. Rom. 1:7; 1 Cor. 1:2)?

Furthermore, corporately, we need more preaching, teaching, and admonishing one another in singing about our being His saints and what that means about how we are to live.

Let us believe what God has said that we are His saints, and let us glorify Him by being entirely consecrated to Him as His saints!

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

In His perfect wisdom, God has provided us with 150 perfect songs in His inspired hymnal, the book of Psalms. Of those 150 perfect songs, God teaches us that 55 of them are eminently suited for church choirs because the Psalm either begins with the words “To the chief Musician” (54x) or has those words later in the first verse (1x):

Ps. 4:1  <To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm of David.> Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer.

Ps. 5:1  <To the chief Musician upon Nehiloth, A Psalm of David.> Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation.

Ps. 6:1  <To the chief Musician on Neginoth upon Sheminith, A Psalm of David.> O LORD, rebuke me not in thine anger, neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.

Ps. 8:1  <To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm of David.> O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.

Ps. 9:1  <To the chief Musician upon Muthlabben, A Psalm of David.> I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.

Ps. 11:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> In the LORD put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

Ps. 12:1  <To the chief Musician upon Sheminith, A Psalm of David.> Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men.

Ps. 13:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> How long wilt thou forget me, O LORD? for ever? how long wilt thou hide thy face from me?

Ps. 14:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.

Ps. 18:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, the servant of the LORD, who spake unto the LORD the words of this song in the day that the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul: And he said,> I will love thee, O LORD, my strength.

Ps. 19:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.

Ps. 20:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> The LORD hear thee in the day of trouble; the name of the God of Jacob defend thee;

Ps. 21:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> The king shall joy in thy strength, O LORD; and in thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!

Ps. 22:1  <To the chief Musician upon Aijeleth Shahar, A Psalm of David.> My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?

Ps. 31:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> In thee, O LORD, do I put my trust; let me never be ashamed: deliver me in thy righteousness.

Ps. 36:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David the servant of the LORD.> The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear of God before his eyes.

Ps. 39:1  <To the chief Musician, even to Jeduthun, A Psalm of David.> I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue: I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me.

Ps. 40:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.

Ps. 41:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> Blessed is he that considereth the poor: the LORD will deliver him in time of trouble.

Ps. 42:1  <To the chief Musician, Maschil, for the sons of Korah.> As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.

Ps. 44:1  <To the chief Musician for the sons of Korah, Maschil.> We have heard with our ears, O God, our fathers have told us, what work thou didst in their days, in the times of old.

Ps. 45:1  <To the chief Musician upon Shoshannim, for the sons of Korah, Maschil, A Song of loves.> My heart is inditing a good matter: I speak of the things which I have made touching the king: my tongue is the pen of a ready writer.

Ps. 46:1  <To the chief Musician for the sons of Korah, A Song upon Alamoth.> God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.

Ps. 47:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.> O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.

Ps. 49:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.> Hear this, all ye people; give ear, all ye inhabitants of the world:

Ps. 51:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.> Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.

Ps. 52:1  <To the chief Musician, Maschil, A Psalm of David, when Doeg the Edomite came and told Saul, and said unto him, David is come to the house of Ahimelech.> Why boastest thou thyself in mischief, O mighty man? the goodness of God endureth continually.

Ps. 53:1  <To the chief Musician upon Mahalath, Maschil, A Psalm of David.> The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good.

Ps. 54:1  <To the chief Musician on Neginoth, Maschil, A Psalm of David, when the Ziphims came and said to Saul, Doth not David hide himself with us?> Save me, O God, by thy name, and judge me by thy strength.

Ps. 55:1  <To the chief Musician on Neginoth, Maschil, A Psalm of David.> Give ear to my prayer, O God; and hide not thyself from my supplication.

Ps. 56:1  <To the chief Musician upon Jonathelemrechokim, Michtam of David, when the Philistines took him in Gath.> Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me.

Ps. 57:1  <To the chief Musician, Altaschith, Michtam of David, when he fled from Saul in the cave.> Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.

Ps. 58:1  <To the chief Musician, Altaschith, Michtam of David.> Do ye indeed speak righteousness, O congregation? do ye judge uprightly, O ye sons of men?

Ps. 59:1  <To the chief Musician, Altaschith, Michtam of David; when Saul sent, and they watched the house to kill him.> Deliver me from mine enemies, O my God: defend me from them that rise up against me.

Ps. 60:1  <To the chief Musician upon Shushaneduth, Michtam of David, to teach; when he strove with Aramnaharaim and with Aramzobah, when Joab returned, and smote of Edom in the valley of salt twelve thousand.> O God, thou hast cast us off, thou hast scattered us, thou hast been displeased; O turn thyself to us again.

Ps. 61:1  <To the chief Musician upon Neginah, A Psalm of David.> Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.

Ps. 62:1  <To the chief Musician, to Jeduthun, A Psalm of David.> Truly my soul waiteth upon God: from him cometh my salvation.

Ps. 64:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> Hear my voice, O God, in my prayer: preserve my life from fear of the enemy.

Ps. 65:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm and Song of David.> Praise waiteth for thee, O God, in Sion: and unto thee shall the vow be performed.

Ps. 66:1  <To the chief Musician, A Song or Psalm.> Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands:

Ps. 67:1  <To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm or Song.> God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine upon us; Selah.

Ps. 68:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm or Song of David.> Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.

Ps. 69:1  <To the chief Musician upon Shoshannim, A Psalm of David.> Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul.

Ps. 70:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, to bring to remembrance.> Make haste, O God, to deliver me; make haste to help me, O LORD.

Ps. 75:1  <To the chief Musician, Altaschith, A Psalm or Song of Asaph.> Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, unto thee do we give thanks: for that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare.

Ps. 76:1  <To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm or Song of Asaph.> In Judah is God known: his name is great in Israel.

Ps. 77:1  <To the chief Musician, to Jeduthun, A Psalm of Asaph.> I cried unto God with my voice, even unto God with my voice; and he gave ear unto me.

Ps. 80:1  <To the chief Musician upon Shoshannimeduth, A Psalm of Asaph.> Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, thou that leadest Joseph like a flock; thou that dwellest between the cherubims, shine forth.

Ps. 81:1  <To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm of Asaph.> Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.

Ps. 84:1  <To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.> How amiable are thy tabernacles, O LORD of hosts!

Ps. 85:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.> LORD, thou hast been favourable unto thy land: thou hast brought back the captivity of Jacob.

Ps. 88:1  <A Song or Psalm for the sons of Korah, to the chief Musician upon Mahalath Leannoth, Maschil of Heman the Ezrahite.> O LORD God of my salvation, I have cried day and night before thee:

Ps. 109:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> Hold not thy peace, O God of my praise;

Ps. 139:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.

Ps. 140:1  <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.> Deliver me, O LORD, from the evil man: preserve me from the violent man;

Because God has directed these 55 songs explicitly to the chief musician, we understand that they have direct, vital application to the choir directors of every adult church choir because it is only fitting that the chief musician in a church would be leading the adult choir of a church.

Because all 55 of these Psalms are divinely inspired songs, they are therefore 55 perfect songs that every adult church choir should learn to sing and should minister regularly to God in the corporate worship of every church!

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Through the psalmists, God commands us at least five times to make a joyful noise to Him.

Ps. 66:1  <To the chief Musician, A Song or Psalm.> Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands:

Ps. 81:1  <To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm of Asaph.> Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.

Ps. 98:4  Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.

Ps. 98:6  With trumpets and sound of cornet make a joyful noise before the LORD, the King.

Ps. 100:1  <A Psalm of praise.> Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

Three times, He commands all the earth to do so (Ps. 66:1; 98:4; 100:1). He also commands that we would do so by playing musical instruments (Ps. 98:6).

Moreover, we are to do so with thanksgiving and we are to do so with the Psalms.

Ps. 95:1  O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. 2  Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.

Application

We only give God the full glory that we owe Him when we worship Him joyfully through making a joyful noise to Him gratefully with Psalms and with musical instruments. Let us do so and let us make known to all the earth to do so!

 

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Through both his example and his teaching, the apostle Paul highlights the importance of thanking God continually for other believers in our prayers for them. Learning from him, let us do likewise.

Paul’s Example

Rom. 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.

1 Cor. 1:4 I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;

Eph. 1:15-16 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, 16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;

Phil. 1:3 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you,

Col. 1:3 We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,

1 Thess. 1:2 We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers;

1 Thess. 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.

2 Thess. 1:3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;

2 Thess. 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

Phlm. 1:4 I thank my God, making mention of thee always in my prayers,

Paul’s Teaching

1 Timothy 2:1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

Application

In our praying for other believers, let us express thanks to God continually for them. Doing so, we will pray for them the way that God wants us to pray for them.

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Whether or not people should consume any alcohol is a hotly disputed point. No passage sets forth the eternal riskiness of consuming alcohol more solemnly than what Paul wrote to the Corinthians to warn them about those who would not inherit the kingdom of God:

1 Corinthians 6:10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

In no uncertain terms, Paul proclaims under inspiration of the Spirit that drunkards will not inherit the kingdom of God! Those who become enslaved to alcohol will perish eternally unless they repent of their being drunkards.

Given that one’s eternal destiny is at stake on whether he becomes a drunkard or not, no one should risk perishing eternally by choosing to consume any alcohol.

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Scripture provides a sobering account about a man who pretended to care for the poor, but his real concern was not at all about caring for them.

“The Judas Approach” to Helping the Poor

Seeing Mary lavish on Jesus her affection for Him by anointing His feet with very expensive perfume, Judas protested against what she did:

John 12:3 Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment. 4 Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, which should betray him, 5 Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?

He asserted that the perfume should rather have been sold and the money given to the poor to help them. His real motivation, however, was anything but an earnest desire to help the poor:

John 12:6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.

Instead of genuinely wanting to help the poor, Judas was a thief who wanted the steal the money for his own wicked gain.

Application

We must beware “the Judas approach” to helping the poor that pretends to care for the poor but actually is intended for getting money for oneself through iniquitous means.

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Through the Bible in 2020!

August 31, 2020

This morning, I finished reading through the Bible for this year! I praise God that He has allowed me to do so at least once a year every year of my Christian life!

Given the incredible upheaval that is happening in our country at this time, who knows whether the day may soon come when the Bible may be a banned book in our country. For as long as we still have the freedom to do so, I urge you to immerse yourself in the Word of God every year and every day of your life.

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Revelation 11:3-10 powerfully attests to the biblical importance of burial:

Revelation 11:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. 4 These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. 5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed. 6 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.

7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. 8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

9 And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. 10 And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.

During the cataclysmic event of the last days, God will direct two witnesses who will prophesy in a unique ministry lasting for 1260 days. These two witnesses will engage in a miraculous ministry that will bring great torment to the whole world.

When they have accomplished their God-given mission, the beast that will arise from the bottomless pit will slay them. The world will rejoice greatly at their demise and will not permit their dead bodies to be buried.

Three and a half days after their deaths, God will miraculously raise them from the dead and then cause them to ascend up into heaven while their enemies watch (Rev. 11:11-12).

Discussion

Although these witnesses will die in Jerusalem (cf. 11:8, “where our Lord was crucified”), the Spirit does not explicitly say that they are Jewish people. Yet, the Spirit highlights that the world will not allow them to be buried.

By doing so, the Spirit highlights in a profound way that burial will continue to be the will of God for His servants regardless of how far removed in time from biblical times their deaths take place! He also teaches us that He wants His people buried after their deaths even when the entire world stands in opposition to their being buried.

Application

Burial is an important part of the testimony of believers to a world that stands in opposition to God. God’s people should not have anything to do with the unbiblical practice of cremation. They should bury their own whenever they have any say in what happens to His people after they die!

Copyright © 2011-2021 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Follow the Lord Fully!

May 23, 2020

Scripture records several remarkable testimonies about a man who followed the Lord fully! Consider the following passages:

Divine Testimony

After Caleb had served God faithfully in the mission to spy out the land of Canaan, God commended him highly:

Numbers 14:24 But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully, him will I bring into the land whereinto he went; and his seed shall possess it.

God testified to how Caleb had followed Him fully and would reward him for having done so!

Multiple Testimonies

God, however, did not fulfill that promise to Caleb until 45 years had elapsed after He had first made that promise (Josh. 14:6-14). When He did so, three additional testimonies were given to Caleb’s having followed God fully .

First, Caleb testified that he had done so:

Joshua 14:8 Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the LORD my God.

Second, he then spoke of Moses’ having testified of his having done so:

Joshua 14:9 And Moses sware on that day, saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children’s for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the LORD my God.

Finally, the inspired writer of Joshua testified that he had done so:

Joshua 14:13 And Joshua blessed him, and gave unto Caleb the son of Jephunneh Hebron for an inheritance. 14 Hebron therefore became the inheritance of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite unto this day, because that he wholly followed the LORD God of Israel.

Scripture thus records four testimonies to Caleb’s having followed the Lord fully!

Exhortation

Scripture highlights for our profit that Caleb fully followed God. As he did, so must we. Let us do so in the fullness of the Spirit and by the grace of God!

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