|We had a visiting evangelist teach Tuesday’s Bible Study. This person was Pastor Theo Smith from Virginia.
He spoke on the coming revival which will overwhelm the traditional church. He believes that God is going to be taking us outside the box.
He said that we are to magnify Jesus and he taught on the transfiguration of Jesus in Matthew 17.
One point that blew me away was that the three who went up with Jesus to the mountain top were Peter, James, and John. But who wrote about the transfiguration: Matthew, Mark and Luke. Why? Pastor Smith thought that it was due to humility, that if others wrote about the experience, then Peter, James and John would not get puffed up about it (but that is theory, not in the Bible).
Transfigured means changed. We need to remember that the disciples and people around Jesus saw him in the flesh. He was God in the flesh, but in Heaven He was wrapped up in glory. On earth, he walked around as an ordinary man, and was so indistinguishable that Judas had to point Him out, even though He had been teaching frequently in the Temple.
When Christ was transfigured, his glory became apparent to the others, but this glory was there all along, just clothed in the flesh.
Pastor Smith pointed out that Peter, James, and John were often singled out by Jesus for certain experiences, and maybe the reason for that was that they were there, close to Jesus, ready to jump in when He called. That we should be that way in our churches, ready to act if the Pastor needs help, or to reach out and serve others.
Matthew 17:1 Jesus took them to the mountaintop. They needed to be separate, a consecration. Before God does a major work on us, we are separated, consecrated, and set apart. Sometimes other people have a way of holding you back from your spiritual best. Many times, the closer you are to God, the less people you have in your life. That doesn’t mean you live the life of a hermit, and it doesn’t mean you don’t fellowship, or reach out to others. But you are not hanging around those who you used to hang out with before you got saved, not going to the same parties, not frequenting the same bars, etc.
If you receive a dream or a vision from God, it is important not to go around spreading this to everyone you meet. Obviously you can speak with your pastor, but your dream is for you. God will make it happen in due season, and other people will often add to the vision or take away from the vision. Better to speak with God about it until it comes to pass.
Pastor Smith also told us that often God does not give us all the details or all the steps along the path. For often, if we knew all that we would have to go through, we might back down from the path. For example, if God told Joseph he was going to rule as second to Pharaoh, and before that he would be sold into slavery, be put in prison, etc. Joseph might have said thanks but no thanks.
So God leads us step by step.
Where was David when he was anointed? He was by himself, with the sheep, singing Psalms. He was separated from his brothers and seemed so odd that when the priest came to anoint him, David’s father paraded all the other brothers who seemed more likely candidates before him, and then reluctantly brought out David.
Most of the time when Jesus went to pray, he went by himself. This time he took Peter, James, and John with him. Pastor Smith theorized that maybe Jesus’ glory always shone out when he talked privately with His Father (but that is a theory).
Jesus had a conference with Moses and Elijah. Both had remarkable encounters with God. Moses prayed and often was able to change God’s mind toward the Israelites when they sinned against God. He is a type of Christ who stood between God and the people to help save them from their sins. Jesus also stood between God and us, so that we can be saved from our sins.
Moses had a relationship with God that few had. He wanted to know God, did not want to move if God would not go with Him, and he asked to see God’s glory. God stood Moses in a cleft of the rock and covered him with His hand, so that he could see the after glory (so to speak). Now Moses is on the mountaintop with a glorified Jesus (God) who is shining brightly in God’s glory. So Moses was finally able to see God’s glory. (my note, not to mention being in the promised land 1700 years later).
Moses died – so he stood for those in Hades, who passed on before Jesus’ time. Elijah did not die and will be coming again. (my note, boy would I have liked to be a fly on the rock to hear what these three talked about, that and a short walk on the road to Emmaus with Jesus and I would be thrilled).
Well Peter asks Jesus about building a shrine to the three. In the Old Testament when God touched the Earth, they built a shrine for it. For example where the wells were created in the Wilderness, the parting of the Red Sea, the Jordan River crossing, etc.
John saw Jesus glorified again in Revelation 1:12 In this vision Jesus had white hair (a sign of maturity), and feet like brass, which looks like fire. Most times when people see God or Jesus they see the feet like brass.
Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14 where there is a vision of the Ancient of Days, and God the Father.
Events in Daniel and Revelation match. (My note, that is very interesting to map out and study)
No matter what god is worshipped on this Earth, Buddha, or any other god or goddess, when the final judgment comes, every knee will bow to the King. Our goal is to make sure that there are very few left on earth that do not become part of God’s kingdom.
He pointed out that often because of being Christians, we are set apart from others. We should be growing more and more Christ-like, and less like the fleshly people we were. This will make us seem strange to some of our old friends. But we have to remember, that once we got saved, we became citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven, and thus we are ambassadors on the earth. We are temporarily here until we are called back to the Heavenly Kingdom which is our real home.
If you think about earthly ambassadors from another country, you see that they speak what the leadership of the country wants them to say. So we should speak with God and Jesus want us to say. If we have a problem or don’t know how to answer a question, we need to seek the answer in our ambassadorial manual (the Bible), and if there is an impending war or conflict in a country, the ambassadors are the first to be warned, and at times they are removed from the country.
SO when God declares war on the enemies on earth, we will be called home.
As ambassadors on earth, we must work for building God’s kingdom while we are here. Part of that work is to make our pastor’s lives easier.
Soon there will be a great revival, bigger than any human being can handle, bigger than any previous revivals, Pastor Smith saw in a vision.
In past revivals, as soon as God began a move, then men came in and touched it, and then it got altered.
We need to understand what we are called to do and do it in obedience to God.
2 Chronicles 7:14 lists them “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
The four things are: humble themselves, pray, seek God’s face, and turn from wicked ways.
As churches we need to be practicing this, and praying to be ready for the new movement of God.
There are many in the Old Testament who exhibited these qualities, for example Uzziah and also Isaiah who said that he was a man of unclean lips. God sanctified them and purified them and was able to use and work with them.
We broke up into groups of seven to pray for our church and for the coming revival, that many souls will be reached for the Kingdom of Heaven.
This was an interesting Bible study and it convicted me about praying more about revival and being a good servant for God.
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