John 3 – Nicodemus & Moses and the bronze serpent taught by Pastor Don Moore

John 3 – Nicodemus continued taught by Pastor Don Moore

Notes from Bible study taught 1/18/13

We covered the following verses last Bible study

John 3:10-12 Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

Ephesians 4:4-6 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

This week we looked at

John 3:13 No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven.

This is the basis we stand on as a Christian. This is the verse we use to measure any other faith, because no one can say verse 13 except Jesus. No one descended and ascended to Heaven and sits at the right hand of God. No one saw mohammed do this. There is no hope for an unbeliever.

Jesus is a provable historical figure. The question is, do we believe ON Him or IN Him?

1 John 4:1-2 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God,

Only those spirits who confess that Jesus Christ came in the flesh is of God. There are going to be many false prophets, and we must test them and the spirits to make sure they profess the foundational truths of Jesus Christ.

1 John 4:3 and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

The spirit of antichrist is the one that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh.  There are many spirits of antichrist.

What is surprising is that John wrote this Scripture thirty years after Jesus ascended into Heaven.  Just thirty years after Jesus’ ascension there is already a new theology concerning Jesus’ origin and person. Any other story that differs from the Gospel is a lie. The mormons teach Jesus is moroni an angel. The Jehovah witnesses claim that Jesus is “A” god – not the Son of God. The new age claims that he is the light. That is a problem.

The only truth is that Jesus, the man from Nazareth, is the Christ, the manifest presence of God as the prophecies stated.

The spirit of antichrist is always on the earth – anti- means against. Antichrist is against Christ.

Isaiah 14:12-14 “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground,
 you who weakened the nations! For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ascend into heaven,
 I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; 
I will also sit on the mount of the congregation 
on the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, 
I will be like the Most High.’

Ezekiel 28 – also speaks of the fall of Lucifer.

John 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up,

Numbers 21:4-5 Then they journeyed from Mount Hor by the Way of the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom; and the soul of the people became very discouraged on the way. And the people spoke against God and against Moses: “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and our soul loathes this worthless bread.”

The Israelites spoke against God and Moses. When people talk against you or against God you’re dealing with people who are personally discouraged and won’t say, “I missed the mark.” They will blame God or a minister when a saint gets in a dry place.

There is nothing to do but eat the dirt. When your prayer life is not working, you’re doing your ministry and get into a lull, you get dry. You can’t find a sermon that helps. There is nothing to eat but dirt, no Water (of the Word) in your life. A dirt eater will eat the enemy’s lies. You devour everything around you when you are discouraged and you just complain.

To get out of this, you must identify the fact that you are in a state of discouragement and are a dirt eater. You may find something to complain about that has validity, but that is no reason to trash the whole service.   A snake will eat anything, poison, demon.

When you come across such people who are always complaining and discouraged, realize there is something wrong with the person and they are not walking in the Word. They are usually in disobedience in some part of their life, often prolonged disobedience. This is not a saint who sins on Monday and repents in the evening – 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  Those who repent are instantly cleansed. But those in perpetual disobedience in an area of their life get really dry.

Psalm 51 is a prayer of David repenting from his sin.

This is a Psalm of David after he sinned with Bathsheba and had Uriah killed. Their first son died, but then God gave David and Bathsheba a son, Solomon, who would be the next king. The sin of David fell on Solomon. Solomon lusted and did the same things David did.

With Moses, the people were discouraged. They demonized God and they demonized Moses.  They criticized Moses unjustly.

Be careful of the criticism you entertain. When people criticize, not all criticism is meant as correction. Speak evil of no one. Judge the criticism to see if it is valid and should be accepted. If you eat the same thing a damaged person is eating you become discouraged. If the criticism isn’t followed by a correction or asking to correct, don’t entertain it.

Numbers 21:5 And the people spoke against God and against Moses: “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and our soul loathes this worthless bread.”

This was a lie. God brought the people out of Egypt to take them to the Promised Land. He has fed them, provided water, and protection. Their shoes and clothing did not wear out. They were not sick. The bread they call worthless was manna from Heaven.

America has had as many blessings as Israel, as the Jews had when God brought them out of Egypt-land. How come, when we read Scriptures, and we read about the Apostles, David, Paul, the book of Acts, and wonder, how could the Jews miss Jesus and what happened? How could these things happen?

What we forget is the Scriptures we read in an hour or two covered a large period of time, often it took years. Paul spent ten years in Damascus, fourteen in Jerusalem. Thirty years before the book of Acts was written.

The experiences of the Children of Israel are stretched out over time.

All we have to go on is our lives. When a teenager life seems to stretch before us, then we get into our 20’s and have more experiences to draw from. Add another five years, fifteen years, and now you are 40-50 years old. Then you hit a dry period. You think, God will never be able to use me. So they decide I’ll make a golden calf (or some other idol).

America is 200 years old and we’ve forgotten our past challenges and victories. We grow fat on rich food, power, and time stretches out. We forget God. History gets compressed. We have short-term memories. Over time we forget our nerves are all shot and we forget.

Joshua 24:31  Israel served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had known all the works of the Lord which He had done for Israel.

Your blessing is waiting on the other side of your obedience.

Numbers 21:6 So the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and many of the people of Israel died.

God sent serpents to bite the rebellious people.

Numbers 21:7-9 Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you; pray to the Lord that He take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and it shall be that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.

Moses intercedes and God tells him to make a bronze serpent and put it on a pole. When someone is bitten by the serpent (and they will be bitten) all they have to do is look at the bronze serpent and they will live. The bronze serpent is what the medical profession now uses as their symbol, a caduceus.

Someone asked why a serpent (symbol of the devil). Jesus quotes the Numbers story of Moses and the serpent. Everyone looking to Jesus for salvation and to be healed. The serpent is not a perpetual symbol of evil.  Jesus would not use a prophetic picture of himself as evil.

The Old Testament is a precursor of the prophetic path of what to do in the New Testament. The serpent on a pole was not sent to deceive the people or confuse, it is a picture of God’s deliverance before Jesus of Nazareth came as a man to die for our sins and rose from the dead, ascending to Heaven to sit at the right hand of God. It is a carnal version of what would later be the holy act of Jesus. Our salvation comes from looking at Jesus of Nazareth on the cross.

In the Garden of Eden satan chose the image of the serpent to deceive man. The serpent in the garden was not evil until satan chose it.

Snakes slither, hide, and bite people. All the Israelites had to do was to look at the bronze snake raised on the pole to be delivered. The Son of God came to destroy the power of the slithering, sly, deceptive, carnal snake (satan) repressing us. Instead of us dying for our sins, Jesus made the perfect sacrifice. If God puts on the cross – all we need to do is look to it and be healed.

Have a blessed day.
Heather

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About Heather Marsten

Welcome to Heather's Blog. I'm looking forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. I just moved about nine years of material over from another blog site, Xanga, who may close down mid-July. At first I was disappointed to make the move because I had a lifetime membership at Xanga and had to spend weeks transferring posts. But now I'm thrilled. Already I've met new bloggers and read many new websites. Blogging is a wonderful way to expand my horizons and garner new ideas. I'm a happily married mom of three young adults. My husband and I are proud to watch our children grow and venture out into the world. My daughter is still in college but my two sons have graduated. One has a job and the other just graduated and is in the process of finding a job in his field, physics. Anyone know of any jobs out there? I'm proud of our children and love watching them grow and mature. They've become fine, compassionate, and loving people. Empty nest? Nah, I'm too busy to let an empty nest bother me. Not enough hours in the day. My husband and I enjoy quiet time together and I have many interests to pursue - one of which is blogging :D I am a born-again believer and love God. As you read this blog, you will discover that Bible studies thrill me. There is so much wisdom contained between the covers of the Bible and I am fortunate to sit under the teachings of a remarkable pastor, Pastor Don Moore. Members of our church (Living Word Chapel in West Hurley, New York) are encouraged to teach and there are visiting pastors who stop by our church, I also study the Bible on my own and love sharing what I learn. One other passion is writing. My current work in process is a memoir. A scene from my memoir was published in a book called: Heavenly Company: Entertaining Angels Unaware - an anthology of angelic encounters compiled by Cecil Murphy. I'm hoping my memoir will encourage other survivors of abuse. I grew up in a home filled with abuse, including incest. For most of my life I was searching for something that would fill the void of not being loved by my parents. I tried many ways to find that love -- therapy, relationships, occult studies, and keeping my life so filled I had no way to think about my past. It was only when I discovered God that I was able to put the pieces of my life back together and walk forward in a joyous life. My nickname - wondering has changed from wondering where the heck God was in my life, to wondering what incredible adventure is going to happen next. I hope you enjoy my site. Please say hi, share some thoughts, and ask questions. I look forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. Have a blessed day. Heather
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