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The Horror of Horoscopes

Randy Skeete

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Randy Skeete

Evangelist and revivalist from Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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  • March 1, 2005
    12:00 PM
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Copyright ©2005 Restoration Ministry.

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00:01 How many of you have ever done research? May I see your hands if it does not encumber your eating, all right. And I assume many others who are not yet here have engaged in research and you have written papers and you’ve wished and hoped that your name could be first on the list of authors on that paper. That's perfectly natural. Now, you know that the value or the worth of the scholarship of your results is based on some degree on the method you followed in arriving to your conclusions, the design of the research instrument. You must follow a certain method or your colleagues, from far and near, will quickly dismiss your results much to your everlasting embarrassment. When one group, who follows a particular school of thought, wants to undermine another particular group— which happens all the time in academia—you simply say the results or the design of the study was flawed. How you do something is important with regard to the outcome of that which you do. This also applies in the study of the Bible; and it is the disregard of the rule of procedure that leads so many people to come to conclusions that the Bible does not recognize, neither does God. When studying the Bible: rules, guidelines and principles must be followed or you will end up in a quagmire of error and try to pull people into it with you. I will give you two fundamental principles. Our subject is the Horror of Horoscopes or you may also call it what happens when you die?

01:55 Two fundamental principles of Bible study. # 1 Whatever you’re studying, begin your study at the earliest place in the Bible where that subject appears. This is called the Law of First Mention. Let me say that again differently. Let’s say that you’re studying righteous or righteousness. You don’t begin in Romans 8:3, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. 4That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us...” no, that's too far into the Bible. You must begin where righteous is first used. Genesis 7:1, “And the Lord said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous...” You begin your study of righteous or righteousness in that context. If you wanted to study the expression the word of God you begin in Genesis 15:1, “After these things the word of the Lord came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.” The Law of First Mention tells us when studying any subject in the Bible begin where that subject is first introduced. And what that does is it provides you with an anchor that holds you steady as you trace that subject through the rest of the Bible. You cannot pick one Bible verse and say the Bible says. In one superficial sense you’re right. The Bible says in this verse. But in terms of the plenitude of the word of God that is not what the Bible says; that's what that verse says. We must learn to study some from Genesis, some from Revelation, some from Job, some from Thessalonians, some from Isaiah, some from Matthew; then we know what the Bible says. That is principal # 1.

04:20 Principle # 2 Always use a clear easy passage to explain a difficult passage. Do not reverse the process or you will end up in difficulty. Let me repeat that. Always use a clear easy verse to explain an unclear and confusing verse. Jesus used both principles. Let me give you an example of Christ using principle # 1) Begin at the beginning. When Jesus met two disciples on the road to Emmaus in Luke 24 and He was explaining to them why He had to die. They were confused. The Bible says in Luke 24:27, “And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures...” Beginning at Moses which is a reference for Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy. That is where Jesus began to show how the Bible is a story about Him and that it had been prophesied that He would have to die and rise again; all the things that happen on what is called passion weekend. He began at Moses then moved on to the prophets. It was a systematic study beginning at the beginning. Jesus used that principle. Even in nature, I told you a few nights ago, how does corn grow? First the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear. Now, here’s Jesus using the second principle: Use a clear verse to explain an unclear verse or use that which is easy to understand to explain that which is difficult to understand. In Mark 12:13-17, the Pharisees come to Jesus to trip Him up, as usual, in His words. And they said is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar? Well, the situation was chaotic. The Jews were ruled by the Romans—the Jews hated it. The Romans hated having to police the Jews because of all conquered people the Romans had more trouble from the Jews. They’re coming to Christ, Is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar? Jesus knew they’re intentions. In Mark 12:15, “Why tempt ye me? He says bring me a penny, that I may see it. So they brought a penny to Jesus. And he said to them. 16Whose is this image and superscription?” Now, all the audience knew what a penny was. They weren't sure whether to give tribute to Caesar or not; but they knew what a penny was. Jesus said bring me something that you understand, something simple; and so they brought Him a penny, a coin. And he said whose image is on this coin? And there's one right here. And they said Ceasar. Then Jesus explained give Ceasar what’s his; and give God what’s His. In the parables Jesus used that which was simple and familiar to explain things people could not understand. Matthew 13:33, “Another parable spake He unto them; the kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, in which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole lump was leavened” They understood leaven in flour but they did not understand the kingdom of God. So Jesus used the simple: “A sower went forth to sow seed” they understood that. “The kingdom of God is like a fisherman” they understood that. “The kingdom of God is like a man looking for precious pearls” they understood that. Use the simple, that which is clear, simple, beyond dispute in its meaning to explain that which is difficult, hard to understand, maybe controversial because of our limitations not because spirit has any problem. Now, why am I making this lengthy introduction? Because the subject I will talk about briefly today is one in which these basic principles are violated routinely. And in consequence of that violation, people arrive at conclusions that are erroneous and potentially fatal to their eternal destiny. I'm talking about what happens to people after they die. Let’s pray again. Every head bowed. Every eye closed.

Heavenly Father, the subject is serious because so many people are deceived. For the sake of Christ, because you have an interest in people knowing the truth, please Father, I ask again give us Your spirit to enlighten our minds, our eyes, and soften any opposition that may exist in this place. I offer this prayer in Jesus’ name. Amen.

09:10 Genesis 2:7, the Bible says, “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” Let us examine how God formed the first human being. He formed him from the dirt. And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, that which you walked on, on your way here. And then He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life we have something from the earth and we have something from heaven. The life or the breath came from heaven. The physical material came from the earth. And the combination simply means that it is via the use of the physical that we see the expression of the life within a person. That's a human being. I don’t mean to embarrass you but let me quote a text that is embarrassing. Genesis 2:19 will tell us that God made animals the same way. The Bible says, “And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the earth, and every fowl of the air...” the same way out of the ground for mankind, out of the ground for animals. We must understand this if we will understand what happens when people die. Now, let’s see if animals have the same breath that people have. Ecclesiastes 3:19, the Bible says, “For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts” befalleth is an expression that simply means it happens to you. What happens to a man, happens to an animal; “even one thing befalleth them both: as the one dieth, so dieth the other;” there is no difference in the way a dog dies from the way I die. I can get hit by a car and die. Dogs get hit by cars and die. I can be shot and die. Dogs are shot and die. I can be poisoned and die. Dogs are poisoned and die. We die the same way. The verse goes on to say, “yea , they have all one breath...” the physical which is me and the physical of an animal, same thing. The breath in me is the breath of an animal. This is fundamental to understanding in an intelligent way what happens when people die. So we see that man was made the same way animals were made. The breath in man is the breath in animals. The Bible says that. Now, let’s go back to Genesis 3:17-19.

12:10 This is God now speaking to Adam. He has dealt with the serpent. He has dealt with Eve. Now, He deals with Adam. This is a chance for me to repeat what I told you several days ago; God begins at the level of individual responsibility. You cannot say God, I chose to do this because that's what my tribe did. You cannot say God, I chose to follow this truth because that's what my neighborhood did or my family did. God wants to know why you did not make an individual decision based on the truth. Genesis 3:17, “And unto Adam He said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; 18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; 19In the sweat of they face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” Let us look at verse 19 again. I want to introduce a principal that is associated with death. And God works by principles or procedures. Verse 19 again, “In the sweat of they face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground,” The word return is important—“till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” Now, the word return, the prefix re- means again. Return suggests a repeat. When I leave here I return to Michigan. Why am I fully able to say that I will return to Michigan? because that's where I came from. How many of you have never been to Michigan? You cannot return to Michigan because you have never been there. The word return means a prior experience with; a going back to where one came from. The Bible says “In the sweat of they face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground” meaning that's where you began so you will probably go back to dirt. That's what we read in Genesis 2:7, “And the Lord God formed man of the dust” that is what he returns to. The principle of return is essential in understanding if people are in the graves when they die or if they're floating around somewhere between heaven and earth. Now, this principle which is introduced in Genesis is found elsewhere in Scripture. “Let's go to Job 10:9. Job says to God, “Remember, I beseech thee, that thou hast made me as the clay; and wilt thou bring me into dust again?” Again is synonymous to return in the context of the study of what happens to a person when he dies. Job says, “Remember, I beseech thee, that thou hast made me as the clay; and wilt thou bring me into dust again?” It’s a return to that place from which one came. Reading Job 34:14, 15, the Bible says, “If he set His heart upon man, if He gather unto himself His spirit and His breath; 15All flesh shall perish together, and man shall turn again unto dust…” turn, return, again return, turn the words are synonymous in this context it means a going back. The principle of return to an origin not to a forward step to some level of existence one never knew before. To go back this is the value of the principle of First Mention. It establishes a core, an anchor which now guides you through the Scriptures as you study the state of the dead because failure to understand the state of the dead is the reason so many people go to spiritualists. In my favorite part of the world they go to witch doctors. We do the same thing here. We just have different terms for it. In the South it’s the root doctor. Up here it’s a psychic. Maybe it’s the medium or the channelor. We have sophisticated terms. It is the same thing because it is the same power that work through these agents of the kingdom of darkness. Let's go to Psalms 146:3, 4 the Bible says, “Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. 4His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth;” This is important, “he returneth to his earth” it is so natural to us that the Bible calls it “his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish” meaning at death everything ceases: the physical, and the non-physical, the thoughts, the consciousness, the ability to sense and to receive intuitive feelings all of that ceases in that very day. The moment the person dies everything shuts down and the person is lifeless and begins the slow process of decomposition. You go to any graveyard. Dig it up. If the person has been buried long enough you will find largely dirt and some more resistant parts of the human anatomy that take much longer to decompose but if time were enough everything about a person would go back to the dust. Let's go to Psalm 104:29. We saw in Psalm 146:4, “he returneth to his earth.” It’s very personal to us. That’s where we came from and the Bible is very clear, it’s your earth, you are dirt. As a matter of fact in Genesis 3:19 Adam was alive when God looked at him and said, Dust thou art. And he was still alive. God looked at a living man and called him dirt, “dust thou art” and Adam was looking at Him from wherever he was hiding behind a tree. He called Adam dirt while Adam was still alive. We are dirt as we sit where we sit, with all due respect. We have to understand that. Psalm 104:29, “Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust” or their earth. So the earth is ours, Psalm 146:4, “he returneth to his earth” and it properly belongs to the animals, Psalm 104:29, because the animals and we came from the same source. So the Bible calls it, with respect of the animals, their dirt, and for us their dirt; same thing, no difference.

19:50 Wherever I go to preach, I always ask the men, I exempt the ladies, how many men would join me tonight and camp out in a graveyard. Okay we have one brave man. I'm not really asking it now but I ask that wherever I go and I get very few hands. This may sound funny but it tells me there is a fundamental disbelief that when people die they’re really dead. Over the years people have been so conditioned trans-generationally. It has been almost passed on genetically: a dead person is not really dead so when you pass by a graveyard, don’t talk, walk softly; and don’t go by there at night. God’s Word has to sink so deeply into your mind that it goes down to the very level of the subconscious. If that does not happen, when the right crisis strikes you or me, we will fall and the devil knows that. That’s why a great peril among Christians who say they study God’s Word: they read it for five minutes in the morning then rush off to do what they have to do, never meditating on what it says. It is in the meditation that the Word begins to seep like water through dry soil, all the way down to the root. There is one thing I can say for these eastern religions, they believe in meditation: shut everything else out and just focus. You may not agree on what they focus on: saying a mantra over and over and over but Christians ought to shut everything else out—I’m digressing a little bit from the subject but—just allow God’s word to sink. It is water. Water is a symbol of the Word. Just sink and sink and sink and sink—let me tell you something that happened to me. I was gardening one summer. I lived in a townhouse, had a little small backyard, a little plot maybe six feet long, three feet wide. I intended to grow some carrots. I went out one summer early to water the place. I watered it, came inside. When I went out again the place was still dry. I came back I watered again. This literally happened to me. The water just vanished. The ground was so dry. So I took the hose and I said well let’s see who wins the ground or I. And I just stood with the hose until a lake formed in that little plot. It was bounded by some bricks so the water didn’t flow out. So I said you’re soaked now and I went inside. I came back the water was gone. So I crouched down and I stuck my finger in to see and a frog popped out of the ground. Now, some frogs at certain seasons they go underground and that's where they hide out and hang out. This frog, the season I suppose had come, it was probably late spring and I had poured so much water that it went all the way down to where the frog was sleeping or whatever he was doing. The water disturbed him and he came up, looked at me very crossly, and jumped off into the grass and vanished. What’s the point that I’m trying to make? There are frogs in our lives. They are way down in the dirt of our hearts, the soil, and when we just sprinkle the surface of the soil with God’s Word, these things are never touched. They are never disturbed. And they remain not dead just sleeping until the prince of darkness wakens them to cause crisis in our lives. We must pour the water of the Word persistently with great determination until a pool forms and the water goes all the way down and reaches them. When it touches them they have to come popping up. Let me tell you, some of you seated here who are seventh-day Adventist and others, whatever you belong to, who may say that dead people are dead—in a pinch your behavior may betray your true belief. Ecclesiastes 9:5, “For the living know that they shall die.” The word know is critical it encompasses all forms of consciousness. They know, they can interact with knowledge, they can assess, judge, evaluate, analyze; they know that they shall die but the dead know nothing. What we have is a contrast. A living person can interact with the environment. A dead person cannot do that. “The dead know nothing, neither have they anymore a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.” Dead people know nothing. Your dead grandfather, my dead grandmother, cannot speak to me; regardless of how much money I give a witch doctor. I’ve gone to places to preach and I have had to counsel and pray with people who are in the church seeking counsel from God and counsel from witch doctors. I made a call in a certain place: all those who have had contact with witch doctors come forward; half the congregation moved. Now, half may not move here but if I were to say how many of us read a horoscope? half may get up. It may look casual but all contact with the kingdom of darkness is dangerous and it becomes increasingly dangerous as we persist. Ecclesiastes 9:5, 6,  we read 5 let’s read it again, “For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not anything, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. 6Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion forever in anything that is done under the sun.” They have no involvement in life after they are dead. Not physically, not mentally, not psychologically, not spiritually; their existence has come effectively to an end. John 5:28, 29, Jesus himself speaks, He who is the resurrection and the life, He said, “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, 28And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” Jesus himself says there’s coming a day when all people who have ever died will come up from the grave. In Acts 2:29, 34 Peter under the possession of the Holy Spirit—this is the sermon on Pentecost, we associate Pentecost with the outpouring of the Spirit. Here is what a man says under the formal possession of the Holy Spirit. He says in Acts 2:29, “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch  David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulcher is with us unto this day.” Then he clarifies that in Acts 2:34, “For David is not ascended into the heavens”—how does the Bible describe David? a man after God's own heart; yet, he is in the grave. Why should I go to heaven directly when I die when no text in Scripture describes me as a man after God’s own heart? David, a man after God's own heart is still in the grave. The Bible is clear: he is not ascended into the heavens. In Matthew 1:1, the Bible says, “The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David”—David is so important to God, Jesus is called his son. Luke 1:32, 33, “and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David”—referring to Jesus Christ. If anyone ought to be in Heaven it is David. David died, Peter said in Acts 2:29, and his grave, his sepulchre, is still with us. He died. He was buried. Acts 2:29, he is not ascended into the heavens. He’s dead. And will remain that way until Jesus comes to raise him up. We’re told in Daniel 12:2, “And many of them which sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” Here again, we have a description of two resurrections. We have it in John 5:28, 29 and we have it in Daniel 12:2.  Those who come up in the first resurrection they come up to life. Those in the second—don't ever pray to come up in the second resurrection as spoken of in Revelation 20 and in Daniel 12:2 and John 5:28, 29. What happens when a person dies? You know what the devil told Eve? When the devil came to Eve in Genesis 3:1 the Bible says, “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made”—notice the description more subtil, that's why the devil chose to speak through the serpent, more subtil. In dealing with a being that you cannot handle one on one, you cannot handle ten on one, you cannot handle ten thousand on one, you can only handle God and him. And so “the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? 2And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die.” People who believe that when you die you go to heaven they are supporting that verse in Genesis 3:4 spoken, not by God but, by the enemy. There are people who say the body dies and the soul remains alive because the soul cannot die. Now, tonight I will tell you more about soul but for today to whet your appetite for truth—and I hope you have a large appetite for truth. You can never over eat truth—somebody, say amen. You cannot over eat truth. Matthew 10:28, “Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Now, if you say the soul can’t die then what is Jesus saying? Jesus is saying there is a power that can destroy both body and soul and mind and spirit and everything you can think of. The devil can destroy your body. He cannot deny you a place in God's kingdom. What Christ is saying is make sure you are right with me because I am able to destroy not only this body but to destroy you in hell. Tonight, I will say more about the soul and why it is people have come to believe that the soul lives forever even though there is nothing in Scripture that says that. It is the legacy of the teachings of that man who irritates me every time I hear his name and his name is Plato. Let me repeat one or two things. When studying God’s Word use a systematic approach; or you will end up in error. Don’t prove the sabbath has been abolished by going to Colossians 2:16, “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days.” That is not a text that is immediately clear. The one that is immediately clear is “Remember the sabbath day to keep it holy.” Don’t let someone tell you, you can eat anything you like by going to the same verse, “Let no man judge you in meat, or in drink.” Go to Genesis 7:2, “Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens…of every unclean beast two.” There were clean and unclean divisions way back before the flood; has nothing to do with the Jews. Use a clear verse to explain that which is unclear and begin your study where that subject is first mentioned. The state of the dead should begin—not in Luke 16:19-31, “There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day,” not Lazarus and the rich man— Genesis 2:7, “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground,” that’s where you begin. My beloved brothers and sisters, my friends, my guests, everything in life must be done systematically. God is not chaotic. The study of His Word must also be done systematically. That’s how Jesus studied. That’s how He taught. That’s how He calls us to undertake the study of His Word. If you will study systematically and prayerfully, it will be impossible for the devil to lead you into error. For today I want to leave this message on your minds very clearly: animals and people live the same way, die the same way, go to dirt the same way, Ecclesiastes 3:20. When you die you remain in the grave until Jesus wakes you up. Come tonight. Hear the rest of this message. I‘m so sorry we don’t have enough time. Every head bowed. Every eye closed. Father in heaven, in the name of Jesus I ask You touch the hearts of those who heard. Lord, give us a love for that which is true because the truth sets us free. Now, take my beloved friends back to their work, their classrooms, their responsibilities; protect them, bring them back tonight to hear more of the saving truths. I offer this prayer in Jesus’ name and for His sake, amen.

 

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