Category Archive for LIFE IN THE SPIRIT

When is the first day of the year

When is the first day of the Year! Depending on whom this question is addressed, you will definitely receive different answers, but I would like to specifically address this question to all those who profess to be believers in Jesus Christ, the Lord and Creator of the universe.

Therefore, to all who profess to believe in Jesus Christ, the only Begotten Son of God, is Sunday 1st January 2017 the first day of the year to you? Consider the fact that the first thing any true believer should know and believe about Jesus Christ is that, He is the Lord God of the Old Testament by whom all things were created.

The worse indictment that has been labeled on the Christian community by Jesus Christ Himself is that of vain worship. For this is what He said to the Scribes and Pharisees, “Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you saying: ‘ These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:7-9; Mark 7:6-9).
Let us all therefore with open minds consider the following scriptures which states quite unequivocally that;-
• “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men”…” And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:1-4, 14).

• He (Jesus Christ) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence” (Colossians 1:15-18).
• “For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as there are many gods and many lords), yet for us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and through whom we live” (1Corinthians 8:5-6).

• “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Remember, this name was given to Jesus Christ eight (8) days after His birth when was circumcised (Philippians 2:9-11; Luke 2:21).

• “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

Now, if we all believe and truly understand all what is mentioned above concerning Jesus Christ, and truly believe that He is the head of the church, and that in all things He may have the preeminence, the superiority above all others, why then do we give others the preeminence over Him?

The majority of those who claimed to believe in Jesus Christ, unfortunately, do not regard Him as being Lord, for the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you” (Exodus 12:2).
So when is the first month of the year according to the Lord, who created the heavens, the earth, the seas and all that are in them? The first month of the year according the Almighty God, the Creator of heaven and earth is the month on which the Lord’s Passover falls.
For thus says the Lord; “On the tenth of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household…Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats. Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight” (Exodus 12:3, 5, 6).

Now this ordinance which the Lord gave to the children of Israel is an everlasting one, for thus says the Lord; “So this day shall be to you a memorial; and you shall keep it as a feast to the LORD throughout your generations. You shall keep it as a feast by an everlasting ordinance…And you shall observe this thing as an ordinance for you and your sons forever” (Exodus 12:14; 24).

Now please bear in mind that, what the children of Israel were observing was only the copy and shadow of the reality, but today, we have the reality, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself a ransom for all on the exact date of the Passover which is on the fourteenth (14th) day of the first month of the year, which corresponds to fourteen days beginning with the first new moon in Spring, and normally falls between the end of March or early April in the Roman or Gregorian calendar.

The sad and unfortunate thing is that, the majority of those professing to believe in Jesus Christ consider these things to be trivial and insignificant, but according to Jesus Christ, “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46).

And what has eluded the eyes of the many who profess to be believers, but seeing absolutely nothing wrong in giving the preeminence, the honor and the glory to another Deity is the fact that they have not truly perceived the profoundness and magnitude of what is taking place behind the scene.

The irony of truth and the facts of the matter is that, there are only two masters, we can either love one and hate the other, or be loyal to one and despise the other. There are only two kingdoms and we can either be a citizen of the kingdom of light, or be a citizen of the kingdom of darkness. There is either the truth which is Jesus Christ or the lie which is Satan; one is either a slave of righteousness or a slave of sin, there are no middle grounds.

So then, where did we get the idea that a day begins in the night instead of sunrise! That Sunday, the first day of the week is the Sabbath instead of Saturday the seventh day! That a new month can begin at any time without the inclusion of the moon, despite the fact that the word month actually originated from the moon! That a new year can start in the middle of winter, again without the inclusion of the moon, instead of the first new moon in spring! That the month September which name originated from number seven is now the ninth month, October, which originated from the word “Octagon” meaning eight, is now the tenth month, and December which originated from number ten is now the twelve month?

The root cause of this dilemma of vain worship is the quest for Satan the father of lies and prince of darkness, to dominate over light and truth which represents the kingdom of God. It is Satan’s quest to be worshiped just as God is worshiped. So what seems to the majority of professing believers as trivial and insignificant is more profound and significant than they realized.

The irony of truth is all the above mentioned changes were established by the fourth beast which is the Roman Empire, to whom Satan has given his power, his throne and great authority. Therefore, when we reject the basic principles established by the kingdom of light and adopt the principles established by the kingdom of darkness, we are giving Satan the preeminence over our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

By giving the principles established by beast the preeminence over the principles established by the Lord, whether knowingly or unknowingly, we are automatically worshiping the dragon who gave his power, his throne and great authority to the beast, because ignorant of the law is no excuse. (Revelation 13:4).

Therefore, the Lord’s admonition to His people is, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. For her sins have reached to heaven and God has remembered her iniquities” (Revelation 18:4).
The question is will we all take heed, the choice is ours.
Copyright © 2016 by Lucius Joseph
All rights reserved

Birth of Jesus Christ has never been a secret (continued)

The birth of John Baptiste is a very important source of information which can help us determine and verify the exact and precise time of Christ’s birth.
• The birth of John Baptiste
The scriptures state quite explicitly that John Baptist was six months older than Jesus Christ, because when the angel visited Mary he said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God. Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren” (Luke 1:35-36).
The scriptures further confirmed that, “Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!” (Luke 1:39-42).
Indicating that Mary was already pregnant when she visited Elizabeth and one can safely assumed that from the time Mary said to the angel “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word,” she became conceived. Therefore, if we can determine and verify when John Baptiste was born, we simple have to add six months to that time to arrive at the time of Christ’s birth, so let us begin the journey by following the basic principles of child birth.

The scriptures state quite explicitly that there was a certain priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth” (Luke 1:5).
According to the scriptures there were twenty four (24) divisions of priest who were to perform their official duties at the altar. “This was the schedule of their service for coming into the house of the LORD according to their ordinance by the hand of Aaron their father, as the LORD God of Israel had commanded him” (1Chronicles 24:19).
These divisions came in and went out month by month throughout all the months of the year, with the first division performing his services beginning with the first month of the year. Now since there were twenty four divisions (24) it means that two divisions performed their services every month, and since Zacharias was of the division of Abijah whose division was the eighth, it means that Zacharias official service at the altar when he was visited by the Angel was between the fifteenth and sixteenth week of the year which coincided with the two last weeks of the fourth month.
Now the scriptures confirmed that “As soon as the days of his service were completed, that he departed to his own house. Now after those days his wife Elizabeth conceived; and she hid herself five months, saying, “Thus the Lord has dealt with me, in the days when He looked on me, to take away my reproach among people” (Luke 1:23-25).
After those days of his official service, when his wife Elizabeth was conceived, brings us to the fifth month of the year. Now if Elizabeth was conceived during the fifth month of the year, she would have given birth to John Baptiste during the first month of the following year, and having been six months older than Jesus Christ, He would have to be born during the seventh month of the year. What is so mysterious or impossible for anyone to understand?
Unfortunately, people who profess to be believers in Jesus Christ choose to ignore all these trove of evidence which points to the exact time of Christ’s birth, and rather cleave to the customs and traditions of men that have absolutely nothing to do with the birth of Jesus Christ. What a dilemma of vain worship! A situation which Jesus Christ vehemently spoke against: But truly, these times of ignorance God has overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent.

Reasons why Christians should not be celebrating Christmas (part 5)

The fifth reason why Christians should not be celebrating Christmas it is because the date of Christ’s birth has never been a secret.

It is well documented in scripture that Jesus Christ was born as the king of kings and Lord of lords, because we are told that; “Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him. “And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh” (Matthew 2:1-2, 11).
The presentation of gold was to honor Him as King, the frankincense was to honor Him as God, and the myrrh was to honor Him as man.

During His earthly trial, Jesus Christ was brought before Pilate who, “called Jesus, and said to Him, “Are You the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered him and said, “Are you speaking for yourself about this, or did others tell you this concerning Me?” Then Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered You to me. What have You done?”
Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom was of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.” therefore said Pilate to Him, “Are You a king then?” Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:33-37).

Therefore, my humble question is when did Jesus Christ receive the title of King of kings and Lord of lords? Was it not at His birth! Please consider the words of the wise men when they entered Jerusalem seeking for Jesus, and Jesus Christ’s answer to Pilate. The wise men asked, “where is He who has been born King of the Jews? And Christ’s answer to Pilate was, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born and for this cause I have come into the world.”

My humble question again is, if Christ was born as the King of the Jews, and He said plainly that it is for this reason He was born and came into the world, if there is a festival that is ordained specifically to honor the King of kings and Lord of lords, who does this festival honors? And what is the rationale for celebrating this festival?

There is a feast of the Lord which honors and commemorates the King of kings and Lord of lords, as prophesied by the prophet Isaiah who wrote; “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this” (Isaiah 9:6-7).

This festival is so indispensable that in the future, every nation will be required to come and worship the King, and those who refuse to worship the King will be severely punished, for it is written; “And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles.’
“And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth that do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, on them there will be no rain. If the family of Egypt will not come up and enter in, they shall have no rain; they shall receive the plague with which the Lord strikes the nations who do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles.

This shall be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all the nations that do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. In that day “HOLINESS TO THE LORD” shall be engraved on the bells of the horses. The pots in the Lord’s house shall be like the bowls before the altar” (Zechariah 14:16-20).
Now there is a definite date, and time of the year for this celebration and commemoration, for it is written; “The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the Feast of Tabernacles seven days to the Lord. On the first day there shall be a holy convocation. You shall do no customary work on it. For seven days you shall offer an offering made by fire to the Lord. On the eighth day you shall have a holy convocation, and you shall offer an offering made by fire to the Lord. It is a sacred assembly, and you shall do no customary work on it” (Leviticus 23: 34-36).

My humble question again is what is the rationale for celebrating this annual festival in the past, now, and in the future? The rationale for celebrating this festival in the past according to the scriptures was for the children of Israel to dwell in booths for seven days. All who are native Israelites were to dwell in booths (temporary dwellings) so that their generations may know that the Lord made the children of Israel dwell in booths when He brought them out of the land of Egypt. This was a shadow and copy of the reality.

Today, we have the reality, the body of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as our permanent dwelling which He received at birth.

In the future, the rationale for this celebration will be to honor Jesus Christ as the King of kings and Lord of Lords an honor which He received from birth.

The Eighth day of this festival is also very significant because it was on this eighth day that He was circumcised and God also highly exalted Him and gave Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Therefore, the title King of kings, and Lord of Lords which is associated with the feast of Tabernacles were given to Jesus eight days after His birth at His circumcision. For it is written: “And when eight days were completed for the circumcision of the Child, His name was called JESUS, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb” (Philippians 2:9-11; Luke 2:21).
To be continued.

Reasons why Christians should not be celebrating Christmas (part 4)

The fourth reason why true Christians should not be observing Christmas it is because, Whosoever worships God must worship Him in spirit and truth.
The scripture states quite emphatically, “You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:22-24).
Now with regards to the celebration of Christmas, there is absolutely no evidence, no veracity, or proof that Jesus Christ having anything to do with this festival, and the worse indictment that has been indicted against believers is that of worshiping God according to the customs and traditions of men.
For thus says the Lord; “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ‘ This people honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men … the washing of pitchers and cups, and many other such things you do.” He said to them, “All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition” (Mark 7:6-9).
It is no secret that the main character that is depicted in the celebration of Christmas is Santa Claus, and despite whatever good that may have been said or written about Santa Claus as to its origin, the irony of truth is, the name of Jesus Christ ought not to be associated with such a festival.

For “Thus says God the Lord, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread forth the earth and that which comes from it, Who gives breath to the people on it, and spirit to those who walk on it: “I, the Lord, have called You in righteousness, and will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the Gentiles, to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the prison, those who sit in darkness from the prison house.
I am the Lord, that is My name; and My glory I will not give to another, nor My praise to carved images. Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them” (Isaiah 42: 6-9).

It is absolutely clear that, the Lord does not share His glory with another, and since the main characters that are portrayed in the celebration of Christmas are foreign gods such as Santa Claus, Saturnalia, a holiday in honor of Saturn, the god of agriculture, Juvenalia, a feast honoring the children of Rome, Mithra, the god of the unconquerable sun who was believed to be an infant god, born of a rock, and whose birthday was the most sacred of the year for the Romans, so how can Jesus Christ the Lord, who does not share His glory with no other be a part and parcel of such a celebration?
For it is written “Take heed to yourselves, lest you forget the covenant of the Lord your God which He made with you, and make for yourselves a carved image in the form of anything which the Lord your God has forbidden you. For the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God” (Deuteronomy 4:23-24).

Since it is stated quite distinctly saying, “(for you shall worship no other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God)”, and the Lord clearly said; “These are the feasts of the LORD, holy convocations which you shall proclaim at their appointed times.” Now since Christmas is not one of the Lord’s feasts, it is a clear indication that there is no veracity in associating this festival with Jesus Christ our Lord.
The worse dilemma is, professing Christians have blatantly rejected the festivals which the Lord have appointed and ordained as His festivals, and have tenaciously cleaved to those instituted by the customs and traditions of men. What an abomination?

To this the Lord says; “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices to Me?” Says the LORD. “I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fed cattle. I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or of lambs or goats. When you come to appear before Me, Who has required this from your hand, to trample My courts?
Bring no more futile sacrifices; Incense is an abomination to Me. The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies — I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting. Your New Moons and your appointed feasts My soul hates; They are a trouble to Me, I am weary of bearing them. When you spread out your hands, I will hide My eyes from you; Even though you make many prayers, I will not hear. Your hands are full of blood” (Isaiah 1:11-15).
It is high time that professing Christians learn to ascribe to the Lord the glory due to His name, which is accomplished by observing His festivals at the appointed time, because every festival of the Lord commemorates the event which transpired on that particular day, on behalf of humanity. Furthermore, these times of ignorance God has overlooked, and now commands all men everywhere to repent.
To be continued.

Reasons why Christians should not observe Christmas (part 3)

The third important reason why Christians should not be observing Christmas it is because the Christmas festival was introduced to Christianity by the fourth beast of the prophet Daniel’s end time prophecy.

The fourth beast according to the prophet Daniel’s prophecy is the Roman Empire. Because according to history, the four great beasts or kings/kingdoms which Daniel saw in the vision were as follows:-
1. The Chaldean/Babylonian Empire (605-506 B.C)
2. The Persian Empire (529.B.C)
3. The Grecian/Macedonian Empire (Golden age) 461-431 B.C.
4. The Roman Empire with its seven revivals (200 B.C.

History reveals that the amalgamation or the merging of Christmas with Christianity was implemented by the fourth beast of Daniel’s prophecy because: “The first mention of the celebration of Christmas occurred in A.D. 336 in an early Roman calendar, which indicates December 25 as the day of observance.”
The vision which the prophet Daniel saw regarding the last four governing kingdoms of this world is stated as follows; “I saw in my vision by night, and behold, the four winds of heaven were stirring up the Great Sea. And four great beasts came up from the sea, each different from the other.”
The vision was later interpreted to Daniel and he said; “I, Daniel, was grieved in my spirit within my body, and the visions of my head troubled me. I came near to one of those who stood by, and asked him the truth of all this. So he told me and made known to me the interpretation of these things: ‘Those great beasts, which are four, are four kings which arise out of the earth” (Daniel 7:2-3; 15-17).
Remember, the prophet Daniel lived during the reign of the first beast, because in another vision, Daniel said to the ruler of the first kingdom who was Nebuchadnezzar saying; “You, O king, are a king of kings. For the God of heaven has given you a kingdom, power, strength, and glory; — you are this head of gold. But after you shall arise another kingdom inferior to yours; then another, a third kingdom of bronze, which shall rule over all the earth. And the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron, inasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything; and like iron that crushes, that kingdom will break in pieces and crush all the others” (Daniel 2:37-40).

At the time the apostle John wrote the book of Revelation, he wrote this concerning this fourth kingdom and said; “Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name” (Revelation 13:1).
Now the angel who revealed the mystery of the beast (kingdom), and the woman (false church) who controls it said to the apostle John, “Why did you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman (false church) and of the beast (the Roman Empire) that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten horns.
The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit (Satan’s kingdom) and go to perdition (spiritual ruin, damnation). And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.’
“Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains (nations) on which the woman (false church) sits. There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time. The beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition (Spiritual ruin, damnation)” (Revelation 17:7-11).

Now the remarkable or distinguish characteristics of this fourth beast is that it bears the characteristics of the other three previous beasts, for it is written; “Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon (Satan) gave him his power, his throne, and great authority. (Revelation 13:2-4)

The sad reality is, inasmuch as it is the fourth beast (the Roman Empire) to whom Satan the dragon has given his power, his throne, and great authority that amalgamated Christmas to Christianity, whoever observes this festival unfortunately, worship and honors Satan, for it is written; “And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And the whole world marveled and followed the beast. So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?” (Revelation 13:3-4).

It is the same kingdom to whom Satan has given his power, his throne and great authority that has changed times and laws, for it is written; “The fourth beast shall be a fourth kingdom on earth, which shall be different from all other kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, trample it and break it in pieces. The ten horns are ten kings who shall arise from this kingdom. And another shall rise after them; He shall be different from the first ones, and shall subdue three kings. He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, shall persecute the saints of the Most High, and shall intend to change times and law” (Daniel 7:23-25).

Consider this for a moment; is it by coincidence, or is it by natural design that our bodies crave for sleep and rest in the night and wake up fresh in the morning to begin a new day? Now since a day has two (2) periods, a period of light which is called day, and a period of darkness which is called night. Now since twelve O’clock in the day is called midday and twelve O’clock in the night is called midnight, how logical and sensible it is to say and believe that a new day begins at sunset or midnight?

Again, is it by coincidence, or is it by natural design that the word month originated from the moon and it is the moon that regulates the tides and waves of the ocean, the geysers of a volcano, sowing and harvesting time, and a woman’s menstrual period? Therefore, if all these things are not by coincidence but by natural design, why have we turned away from this system? And who changed them?

Consider again, was it by coincidence that the word September, October, and December were originally derived from the word seven, eight, and ten! So why is it that they are now recognized as the ninth, tenth and twelve month respectively! What is the rationale! Who altered them?

All these changes including the changing of the seventh day Sabbath (Saturday), to the first day of the week (Sunday), which is in honor of the day of the sun, were implemented by the beast, to whom Satan has given his throne, his power and great authority, so as to divert our worship, honor and praise from the Eternal God our Creator, and to worship Satan instead.

Unfortunately, the majority of people who professed to be Christians, all these changes seem to them trivial and insignificant, not realizing and understanding the profoundness, the motive and rationale for all those changes, which all relate to the question of whom we worship and obey.

Reasons why Christians should not observe Christmas (part 2)

2. Christmas has a pagan origin

In this regard, the Lord, who is Jesus Christ, and the same yesterday, today and forever warned His people concerning the worshiping of false gods and said; “When the Lord your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.’
“You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way; for every abomination to the Lord which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. Whatever I command you be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it” (Deuteronomy 12: 29-32).
We are further instructed saying; “Hear the word which the Lord speaks to you, O house of Israel. Thus says the Lord: “Do not learn the way of the Gentiles; do not be dismayed at the signs of heaven, for the Gentiles are dismayed at them. For the customs of the peoples are futile; for one cuts a tree from the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the ax. They decorate it with silver and gold; they fasten it with nails and hammers so that it will not topple. They are upright, like a palm tree, and they cannot speak; they must be carried, because they cannot go by themselves. Do not be afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, nor can they do any good” (Jeremiah 10:1-5).
We have also been warned saying; “that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s Table and of the table of demons. Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than He?” (1Corinthians 10: 20-22).
The irony of truth is, coming before God at a time which He has not appointed is profanity and an abomination. For thus says the Lord; “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices to Me? I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fed cattle. I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or of lambs or goats.’
“When you come to appear before Me, who has required this from your hand, to trample My courts? Bring no more futile sacrifices; Incense (prayer) is an abomination to Me. The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies — I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting. Your New Moons (beginning of months) and your appointed feasts My soul hates; They are a trouble to Me, I am weary of bearing them. When you spread out your hands, I will hide My eyes from you; Even though you make many prayers, I will not hear. Your hands are full of blood” (Isaiah 1:11-15).

The Lord echoed similar sentiment to the prophet Amos regarding the children of Israel by saying; “I hate, I despise your feast days, and I do not savor your sacred assemblies. Though you offer Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them, nor will I regard your fattened peace offerings. Take away from Me the noise of your songs, for I will not hear the melody of your stringed instruments. But let justice run down like water, and righteousness like a mighty stream” (Amos 5:21-24).
The Lord has ordained specific times on which His people should appear before Him to worship the Lord in the beauty of Holiness and to rejoice before Him. For thus says the Lord; “These are the feasts of the Lord, holy convocations which you shall proclaim at their appointed times” (Leviticus 23:2, 4).

The Lord went on to specify each one of them by name, and the date of celebration, incidentally, Christmas is not one of them and therefore, it is an abomination to the Lord.
To be continued.

Five reasons why Christians should not be celebrating Christmas

Here are five reasons why true Christians should not be celebrating Christmas.

1. Christmas does not give honor and glory to Jesus Christ

Since the rationale for celebrating Christmas is to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, the Lord, our Savior, the King of kings, and Lord of lords, who was not born on this day, the celebration therefore does not give honor and glory to Him, but instead gives honor and glory to another being with whom this day is associated.

Jesus Christ who is the Lord, before He became the Son of man gave instructions to Moses saying; “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image … any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain” (Exodus 20:2-7).

Now since the Lord our God describes Himself as a jealous God, obviously, He would not be pleased to have His name associated with another deity, for thus He says; “Take heed to yourself, lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land where you are going, lest it be a snare in your midst.
But you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and cut down their wooden images (for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God), lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they play the harlot with their gods and make sacrifice to their gods, and one of them invites you and you eat of his sacrifice, and you take of his daughters for your sons, and his daughters play the harlot with their gods and make your sons play the harlot with their gods” (Exodus 34: 12-16).
It is high time for those professing to be Christians realize that Satan in vying to be worship just as God is worshiped, and therefore, has a counterfeit or substitute to everything God has ordained for man to worship and glorify Him.

Long before man was created, and Satan had not yet fallen, and was known as Lucifer, son of the morning, his heartfelt desire was to be like God, for this is what he said in his heart, “I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars (angels) of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation (the position of supreme authority) on the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:13-14).

Now, having been brought down to the lowest depths of the Pit (Sheol), did not abort Satan’s ambition and desire to be worshiped as God. He tried to tempt Jesus Christ, the very Lord God who created the heavens and earth, and all that are in them, including Satan himself, to worship him. For during Christ’s fasting in the wilderness, Satan took Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, “All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours” (Luke 4:5-7).
Jesus’ reply to him was, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.”

Consider this for a moment, if Satan attempted to have the very One who created him to bow down to him and worship him, how much more do you think he will attempt to have puny human beings who were created lower than the angels to worship him! The crux of the matter is, Satan is God’s adversary and he will do anything to cause man to disobey, dishonor, and reject God’s authority and become his servants.
Disobeying the laws of God and the natural laws of nature is not as trivial and insignificant as people make them appear to be, it is a matter of who receives the honor the glory and the praise. In every aspect of life there is a basic principle for Godly living which God has instituted by which man should live.
To be continued

Should Christians be celebrating Christmas

Should Christians observe Christmas Festivities?
Christmas as we all know is the most celebrated festival in the whole world, it is known to be the happiest and busiest time of the year for millions of Christians throughout the world, and traditionally known as the holiday season.
Christmas celebrations have a long history dating back to the 300’s as recoded in the “World Book Encyclopedia” stating; “The first mention of the celebration of Christmas occurred in A.D. 336 in an early Roman calendar, which indicates December 25 as the day of observance.”
It further states that; “This celebration was probably influenced by pagan (unchristian) festivals held at that time. The ancient Romans held year-end celebrations to honor Saturn, their harvest god; and Mithras, the god of light.”
Having cited these quotations, I again ask the question, “Should Christians observe Christmas festivals?” Read my book “the dilemma of vain worship“.
I know how difficult it is to depart from old family and religious traditions, and especially from something that has been imbedded in human society for thousands of years, and so the first reaction or feedback one receives when trying to bring changes to any old tradition is, “Are you trying to change the world.” And since it is impossible to change the world, the concept of many is that, if you cannot change something, you join it and go along with the system.
But the irony of truth is, no one can change this evil world, it is going to be progressively evil, and so we are not to go along with it because we cannot change it, but instead follow the admonition which says, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. For her sins, have reached to heaven and God has remembered her iniquities. (Revelation 18:4-5).
And remember, Jesus in His prayer on behalf of His disciples said; “I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth” (John 17:14-17).
Stay tuned for five (5) logical reasons why Christians should not observe Christmas.

Integral component of the Lord’s Sabbaths (part 4)

110914-153407 The seventh integral component of the Lord’s Sabbath is; “You shall offer an offering made by fire to the Lord”

This is the most critical and most beneficial component of the Lord’s Sabbaths, but unfortunately, it has been the most neglected and under estimated component of the Lord’s Sabbaths, even by those who profess to be staunch believers and observers of the Sabbath.
This component of the Lord’s Sabbaths, is the main objective of gathering together to have a holy convocation. For it is written; “These are the feasts of the LORD which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire to the LORD, a burnt offering and a grain offering, a sacrifice and drink offerings, everything on its day.”
This offering as one can see is besides (or in addition to), the Sabbaths of the LORD, besides our gifts, beside all our vows, and besides all our freewill offerings which we give to the LORD” (Leviticus 23:37-38).

This offering is of such intrinsic importance, that the Lord cautioned Moses and said to him; “Command the children of Israel, and say to them, ‘My offering, My food for My offerings made by fire as a sweet aroma to Me, you shall be careful to offer to Me at their appointed time.” The appointed time is extended beyond the Sabbaths to include the regular daily offering and every New moon, which is the beginning of every month (Numbers 28:2).

It is the presentation of this offering that constitute the church in true perspective as clearly explained by the apostle Paul who wrote; “For first of all, when you come together as a church, I hear that there are divisions among you, and in part I believe it. For there must also be factions among you, that those who are approved may be recognized among you. Therefore when you come together in one place, it is not to eat the Lord’s Supper. For in eating, each one takes his own supper ahead of others; and one is hungry and another is drunk. What! Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church of God and shame those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you in this? I do not praise you” (1Corinthins 11:17-22).

The apostle Paul’s condemnation of the church at Corinth, was the manner in which they partook of the Lord’s supper when they met together as a church, but after explaining to them the sacredness of the occasion, he then said to them, “Therefore, my brethren, when you come together to eat, wait for one another. But if anyone is hungry, let him eat at home, lest you come together for judgment. And the rest I will set in order when I come” (1Corinthians 11:33-34).
The reason for the possibility of coming together for judgment, is by not properly discerning the Lord’s body, eating and drinking in an unworthy manner, causing many to be weak, sick, and many fallen asleep(dead).

It is said that, “ For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body — whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free — and have all been made to drink into one Spirit. For in fact the body is not one member but many” (1Corinthins 12:13-14).
But it is when we come together to break bread that we have fellowship with one another, this was clarified by the apostle Paul who wrote; “Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry. I speak as to wise men; judge for yourselves what I say. The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we, though many, are one bread and one body; for we all partake of that one bread” (1Corinthians 10:14-17).

So then, what is this burnt offering, a grain offering and drink offering, that we are to offer to the Lord at all the appointed times?
In our New Testament dispensation, the body and blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is the burnt offering, “Who also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma” (Ephesians 5:2).
Most people are very familiar with scripture which quotes Jesus Christ as saying; “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” It is through the presentation of this offering that Jesus becomes the way, which is through His flesh, the truth, which is through Himself our High Priest and the word of God, and the life, which is through His blood. “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and the Lord has given it to us upon the altar to make atonement for our souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.’
The apostle Paul confirmed this mechanism by which we can draw near to the Father by stating; “Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, and having a High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water” (Hebrews 10:19-22).

This offering is our four cornerstone of salvation to present us holy, blameless and irreproachable in the presence of God the Father.

1. It is the wisdom of God

The hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory” (1Corinthians 2:7-8).

2. It is our righteousness

Who is Jesus Christ our Righteous Judge, our High Priest, Who mediates and intercedes on behalf of our sins.

3. It is our Sanctification

For it is written; “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” He takes away the first that He may establish the second. By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” It is through His body, which is represented by the unleavened bread, that we become sanctified, and set apart. (Hebrews 10:9-10).

4. It is our Redemption

Which is through the blood of Jesus Christ, because God the Father, “has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14).

So important is this component of the Lord’s Sabbath, yet it is unfortunately the most neglected, and misconstrued element of the entire process. Without this offering, one has no access to the inner court, where the throne of God is. Therefore we have been admonished saying, “Give to the LORD the glory due His name; Bring an offering, and come before Him. Oh, worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness! Tremble before Him, all the earth” (1Chronicles 16:28-30; Palms 96:7-9).

But God has overlooked these times of ignorance, and now commands all men everywhere to repent. The choice is ours.

Copyright © 2016 by Lucius Joseph
All rights reserved

Integral component of the Lord’s Sabbaths (part three)

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5. A Holy Convocation

The fifth integral component of the Sabbath, is to have a holy convocation. Now what is a holy convocation? A holy convocation is a formal gathering of sanctified people who have been summoned to come together. Now the one who has issued the summons is the Lord Himself who said, “These are the feasts of the LORD, holy convocations which you shall proclaim at their appointed times”.
One interesting thing to note is the word holy, which always precedes the word convocation. The word holy denotes, sanctified, set apart for the service of God. It refers to the divine, which has its sanctity directly from God or is connected to Him. It is something consecrated to God.
Therefore, the instructions given, in order to have a holy convocation are as follows; “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ” I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people.” Therefore ” Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty” (2Corinthians 6:14-18).
Holiness of the congregation is also the reason why the apostle Paul admonished the church and said to them, “I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner — not even to eat with such a person. For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? But those who are outside God judges. Therefore “put away from yourselves the evil person.” Because when it comes to the worship of the Lord, we are required to worship the Lord in the beauty of Holiness, in an environment where sin does not exist. (1 Corinthians 5:9-13; Psalms 96:9).

6. Do no customary work on it

One important component of the Sabbaths is that of, no customary work to be done on them. Beginning with the weekly Sabbath where from creation, we have been instructed saying, “Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made” (Genesis 2:1-3).

From the giving of the law, where we have been instructed saying; “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11).

And now in our New testament dispensation, we have been instructed saying; “For if Joshua had given them rest, then He would not afterward have spoken of another day. There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His” (Hebrews 4:8-10).
Therefore, doing no customary work on the Sabbaths, is part of the equation that makes up the Lord’s Sabbaths.
Copyright © 2014 by Lucius Joseph
All rights reserved

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