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The Trials- Part 1

Jason Sliger

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Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Jason is a former full-time evangelist with Amazing Facts, now pastoring in Northern Michigan. He and his wife, Midori, have two children, Evangeline and Christian who are 3 and 1. His greatest desire is to have an experience like Jesus and be part of helping others be like Him too. He enjoys playing with his kids, photography and, when he can find time, playing the guitar.

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  • August 18, 2018
    11:30 AM

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Our theme Bible passages we've been going through our series crisis at the close has been Revelation Chapter 14 and verse 4 we read it together in our scripture reading this morning but the part of the passage that I want to focus on and sweet been focusing on week after week is the part where the Bible says these are they which follow the lamb what's the next word there will ever he goes this is again talking about 144000 those who are alive on earth right before Jesus comes back those who have become so accustomed to following Jesus no matter where he leads them to go that's where they want to be the 144000 the redeemed of God's people they don't just follow Jesus or follow the lamb in the times of peace and prosperity but they follow him also in the times of trial and adverse a team this is the passage that needs to be a reality in our lives that we will follow the lamb wherever he goes but you say men now as we follow the lamb wherever he goes we're told in inspiration we've read the statement many times that before we can follow Jesus in the courts above we 1st have to become accustomed to following him where here below in fact she tells us it's our privilege to be able to follow him here below and I look forward to that becoming a reality in my life and in your life and in our lives collectively as a church as you follow the lead being preparing for this crisis the Clones now this morning I want to share with you a passage of scripture as we begin one that has touched my heart many times as I have read it 1st Peter chapter 2 verses 21 through 23 Peter says this for even here on to where you call because Christ's also what. He suffered for us leaving us a wide example that you should follow his steps now many times this Bible passage is understood in a general context that we are to follow the example of Jesus in everything and although that is true the actual context of the passage is in the context of suffering what is the context suffering Jesus suffered for on us and in that suffering he has left a want an example of how we ought to respond when we come into our time of suffering the crisis at the close the time of verse history when God's people are going to be standing alone in their relationship with God is going to be a time of suffering and there in that time of suffering we need to look to Jesus as our example of how we ought to respond and live listen to how the passage continues says this verse 22 and 23 who did know what let me ask you a question when you're suffering is it hard to not sin Don't answer that question we all know that that's difficult but as Jesus was suffering this example that he has left us the Bible tells us in the midst of that suffering you're going to see our study together this morning that in the midst of that suffering he did know what that is not cumin that is divine who did no sin neither was gone I'll found in his mouth meaning he didn't say hateful words against those who were persecuting him and causing him to suffer. He goes on who when he was reviled reviled not again when he suffered he threatened not but committed himself to him that what judges righteously I don't know about you but I want to put my hand my life in the hands of God and then. This is the example that we need to follow as we come into the into this hour of crisis in our lives the hour of suffering that is before us we want to follow the example of Jesus now it's interesting to me just in passing here this word example and 1st Peter chapter 2 verse 21 is the only time that is used in the New Testament and it's interesting the word convey something very interesting the word is used in the Greek context the word was used to refer to when a teacher would give his students a copy of the Greek alphabet and from that copy they would give they would they would copy that example from that example they would copy the alphabet of the Greek alphabet and so basically what Peter is telling us here is that Jesus is the exam or the copy and we are to follow him as an example in our lives specifically in the example of suffering he is the copy that we are to follow now in our study together last week we look at the time when the mob came to take Jesus away to his trials now we say trials because it wasn't just one there were actually 6 trials that Jesus went through before he was ultimately crucified we're going to look at those 6 trials over the next couple of studies together. But as we looked at Jesus in the garden of get 70. As the mob cruelly lay their hands upon him we found that Judas as we know was the one who betrayed Jesus this man who had walked with Jesus for 3 and a half years and as we looked at that we saw that Jesus told us that in the last days that our worst enemies would be those of our very own households and as we look to that story what we found is that when that man who was so close to Jesus be trade him there was no guile that was found in Jesus his mouth but what did he say to Judas as Judas laid his disgusting lips on the face of Jesus in a kiss of betrayal What did Jesus say to Judas he said what friend he called him a friend a knack and a word of endearment in that time of trial in that time of the trail and then as it led on into that time of persecution and brothers and sisters what we find is that same character that Jesus manifested when Judas betrayed him is the same character that we see in the life of Jesus as he goes from one trial after another all through those 6 trials until his ultimate death upon the cross that character of love to those who have mistreated him now when I ask you a question this morning and maybe you've wrestled with this question before in your own personal life I don't know but the question is this Why does God allow his children to suffer it's clearly obvious here as you look at the story of Jesus that god. It was God's will for Jesus to suffer it was God's will for Jesus to go through these 6 trials it was God's will for him to be crucified on the cross to die for our sins why does God allow humans to persecute other humans not think there's a lot of answers to this questions and we can get very philosophical in trying to answer it but I want to give you a simple answer that I think is worth contemplating this morning and that is because God is using us as a demonstration he's using us as a what as a demonstration you know the Bible tells the 1st Corinthians Chapter 4 verse 9 you can just write that down that the Bible says we are made a spectacle unto the world and to angels and to men we are a what we are spectacle God is using his people as a demonstration that even in times of suffering that even in times of persecution that even in times of trial and difficulty they will maintain their spiritual integrity and that is the greatest evidence that Satan is a liar and that God is truth maybe God allows you to go through a trial because he wants to use you as a demonstration I don't know maybe you've experienced this before where you have met somebody who's gone through a dark period in their life God brought them through that valley and as they've come out of that valley the sunshine of the morning is shining in their eyes and as they share that experience of that darkness that trial that suffering that that difficult time that they went through as they share that experience it is a demonstration of God's sustaining power even in the times of difficult. Brothers and sisters as this time of crisis comes at the close God is wanting to use you as a demonstration to silence the accusations of Satan so much as a mentor that what a privilege that God wants to use me to silence the accusations of Satan that God It is. Just now listen me carefully this morning this concept needs to be very clear in your mind it's something that you need to go back and wrestle with because when you come to that hour of darkness when you come to that hour of trial and crisis in your life if this concept is not clear in your mind you will be tempted like Peter and the other disciples to deny Jesus and to turn your back on him popular Christianity today you know gives the picture paints the picture that if you are faithful to God that all that comes to you is nothing but blessing and that if you are not faithful to God then curses come occur a curse will come upon you or trials will come upon you sounds very similar to the Jewish mindset doesn't it that's not the notion that we see in scripture this morning neither is it in the notion that we see throughout Scripture and this is something we need to have clear in our minds as we enter into this time of crisis at the close that God faithfully stands next to his children in both the good and the bad times before we actually get into our study together this morning I want to share with you something that I think is important for you to think about Satan as you may or may not know is spending time studying your character what is he doing he spends time studying your character and as he studies your everich There he is trying to find the weak spots in your character you have a weak spots in your character. He tries to find those weak spots in your character and what will trigger a negative response what will make you impatient what he wants to do he wants to use that to trip you up not just today but at the very end because listen to me carefully brothers and sisters whether the devil trip you up now is of little consequence but when the crisis at the close comes and we are at the very end of this earth's history and Christ is cut you know just moments away from coming in the clouds of heaven if the devil can trip you up in that dark hour he's got you right where he wants you so he's studying you he wants to know where the weaknesses are in your character for some people weakness is physical pain for some it's ridicule for others it is it's abandonment and Jesus went through every single one of those things and came out victorious I'm going to suggest to you the smore name that you probably know a couple of areas in your life that are weak Yeah you know a couple of character areas that are weak in your life that you need to strengthen Here's what we need to do we need to be prayerfully considering in asking the Lord Father please show me the weaknesses in my character because many times we want to emphasize the strengths in our character we want people to see the good side in us but we need to ask the Lord to show us those weaknesses in our lives so that we can by His grace and for his strength strengthen those weaknesses so that when that hour of prices comes Satan will not find anything in a it's in fact most of the Bible says Jesus is talking here in John Chapter 14 in verse 30 he says the prince of this world cometh and what. Has nothing in me what does that mean it simply means that Satan did not had any foothold in Jesus's life and so when the hour of crisis came when that when that crisis our squeezed Jesus all they came out was good and not bad because Satan had no foothold in his life now I want you to buckle up your seatbelts and listen to this next statement it is very powerful Listen to this this is from great controversy Page 623 it says this she's directly commenting on the passages I just read she says this what Jesus said the devil has come it has nothing to me this is the condition in which those must be found who shall stand in the time of trouble did you catch that. This must be the condition of those who will stand when that hour of trouble comes their way what is it that must be the condition that the devil comes and finds what nothing in me that means that before the crisis comes by the grace of God I am strengthening those Kerrick my character those weak spots and I am removing the food holds of the enemy out of my line listen to me carefully friends if we come to the crisis hour and the devil has a foot hole in our lives we will not be successful but we will be defeated That's why right now is the time that we need to be following the example of Jesus because it's only as we look to Him as our example that we will be able to stand in this hour of trial. There's a reason why Ellen White tells us that we should spend a thoughtful hour each day in the contemplation of the life of Christ it's not just a fancy statement it's not just something that helps us to feel good inside but it's a principle that as we behold his life as we behold his character this becomes our experience that the devil has no foothold in my life God's grace this will be our experience now I want you to terminate me in your Bibles as we look at the 1st trial of Jesus to John the 18th chapter as I mentioned there were 6 that Jesus went through this morning we're looking at the 1st 2 title of our sermon crisis crisis at the close the trials part one John Chapter 18 is where we are going to as we look at the 1st trial of Jesus Jesus 1st stands before the ex high priest and he there. Is High Priest and this then he is shipped off from Ennis to K.I.I. offis from K. IAFIS he stands before the Sanhedrin then from the Sanhedrin he goes to pilot then Herit and then pilot again those are the 6 trials that Jesus goes through this morning we will look at the 1st 2. It's just past midnight in the early hours of Friday morning the mob has now hurry Jesus from the same Surely of prayer in the garden of get 70 they have hurried him through the stillness of the dark night from the garden to an Asus place and as they bring him there before Anas the high priest he was considered to be a very funny an individual very intelligent and although he was not the acting the high priest at the time he was the ex high priest he was K. IAFIS is father in law the Jewish nation as a whole look to him with great respect in fact many of the Jews regarded and this is words as though they were the Word of God itself placed him in a very high position and there was fear that K. IAFIS in his lack of experience might not be able to gain from Jesus what was necessary to condemn him to death and so they brought him to Anas 1st because they hoped that his wisdom in his wisdom he would be able to secure a cause to bring Jesus to death there were 2 things that needed to be established before Jesus could be condemned number one he would have to be condemned by some sort of Jewish law it would have to be proved that he'd broken some Jewish law Jewish tradition and number 2 and more importantly he would have to it would have to be proved that he broke some Roman law so before Jesus could ultimately be condemned to die he would have to be proved and have to be proven that he broke Roman and Jewish law John Chapter 18 verse 19 notice what the Bible says. The high priest that is anice then ask Jesus of his disciples and of his one doctrine Jesus answered him I speak openly to the world I ever taught in the synagogue and in the temple where whither the Jews always resort and in secret have I done nothing that's very interesting because the Jews in the religious leaders were used to working under the cover of secrecy. Many of the plottings that took place for the crucifixion of Jesus was all done in secret and here Jesus says listen I don't operate under the cover of darkness I don't operate under the cover of secrecy I have openly declared my doctrine and all of your spied is that you have sent out to follow me wherever I go they have heard my doctrine and then he says this in verse 21 why ask though me ask them which heard me what I have said unto them the whole day know what I have said now it's interesting. As you look at and this is question the 1st thing he asks Jesus is about his doctrine and from there he is trying to establish that Jesus had broke some Roman law it's almost like and this is going in for the kill right from the very beginning he once again something that will condemn him in Roman courts but he is for oil that in his attempt Jesus very eloquently puts And this to silence with his response to his question in fact listen to this in desire of ages page 703 incidentally if you don't have a copy of the book desire pages you can stop at our resource desk and we'd be happy to get one for you but she says this desire of age is page 73 she says Christ said nothing that could give his accusers a what that's wisdom right there and I want to tell you something brothers sisters under the pressure that Jesus was under if you went into that experience humanly in human wisdom and in human strength he would have said something that would have given his accusers an advantage. But because he went under there it went in there in calmness in the stillness dignified knowing that he was doing his Father's Will he was able to carefully choose his words under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and He gave his accusers nothing that would give them an advantage over him verse $22.00 The Bible goes on and when he had thus spoken one of the officers which stood by struck Jesus with the palm of his hand Same answer is that of the high priest so Jesus answered him If I have spoken evil bear witness of the evil but if well why smite this me told in the book desire pages the reason why that man smacked Jesus in the face. And it was because when Jesus responded to end of this question about his doctrine there was nothing that Ennis could say he was silenced at that point this man of great dignity in Roman society this man of great respect by the Jewish people had been completely silenced by the wisdom of Jesus and the man who smacked Jesus in the face was so indignant that and this had been silenced that he took his hand and he smacked the face of God It's a couple things we learn as we watch Jesus in the court of anise as read he spoke nothing that gave his accusers an advantage but more importantly brothers and sisters I believe that part of the 1st thing he spoke no nothing that gave his accusers an advantage that will come naturally as we are possessed by the Holy Spirit but more importantly Jesus was self-control when he was dealt with in a very harsh manner and we don't do too well when we're not treated very nicely right everybody today wants justice we want to be treated fairly but I want to tell you brothers and sisters being a son or daughter of God You are not going to be treated fairly We need to get used to that God will be fair with us of course he will but the world is not going to be fair with you how are you going to react in those kind of situations how are you going to respond when you are treated in an un Christ like an unfair manner. Based on what we know from the life of Jesus in this period of his life based on what took place in the garden of get 70 when he referred to Judas as his friend I can picture in my mind's eye although it is not recorded in scripture that when that man struck Jesus in the face that Jesus did not even have a look of hatred in his face no guile was found in his mouth as the pressure was squeezing Jesus in this crisis our only the atmosphere of Heaven was coming out I want to tell you something brothers sisters it hurts at the best time to get smacked in the face but it hurts even more after you've been sweating great drops of blood harshly dealt with. This trial was very quick it didn't last very long Jesus now is going to be hurried off to sit before K.-I offis the high priest I want you to turn with me to the Gospel of Matthew and we will look at Matthew's account of this there's also an account in Mark as well Matthew 26 is where we are going it's Friday morning as I've already mentioned it's dark outside the angry mob are rushing Jesus now over to K. IAFIS and this has been foiled his attempts have been foiled K. IAFIS we are told that he was just as unscrupulous as Anas was it was not about to let Jesus slip out of his hands you see the Jewish leaders realized. That if they did not act quickly that there would be people who had been healed by Jesus who would come forward and give testimony they would be the blind who had received their sight that would come and give testimony would be the lame who had been able to were given the ability to walk again who would come and give testimony there would be people who would give testimony that would for oil there were 10 and so they had to do this under the cover of darkness they had to do this in an unjust manner and they had to act quickly and move fast to be able to secure the condemnation of Jesus and now they resort to the basis of manner a basis of principles to try to secure Jesus as condemnation Listen to this before we read from the Bible this is from the book desire of ages page 704 we are told this as K. IAFIS look now looked upon the prisoner he was struck with admiration for his noble and dignified bearing Listen to this a conviction came over him that this man was a kin to God The next instant he scornfully banished the thought This is a very powerful thought to me for this reason is I just mentioned K. ifas was a very unscrupulous man he had no bones doing things in an underhanded manner but just standing in the presence of Jesus nothing had come out of the mouth of Jesus yet at this point nothing had been said he is simply in the presence of Jesus and the convicting power of the Holy Spirit falls upon him I don't know about you but I want that atmosphere to go around with me. That's pretty powerful isn't it I want that atmosphere to pervade around me so that when I come into the into the presence of other people that the Holy Spirit is with me and can work on the hearts of other people that are there just by my presence being there Jesus brought within the atmosphere of heaven into that court. Public trial she goes on page $75.00 and she says this The people compared the excited and Milligan it deportment of anise and chaos of his with the calm majestic bearing of Jesus chaos peace she goes on she says this. Even in the midst of that hard in multitude a rose the question is this man of God like presence to be condemned as a criminal again the presence of Jesus as he came into that trial the Holy Spirit was within the atmosphere of Heaven was with him wherever he went and hearts were being touched this spirit was convicting these people that this man was the Son of God brother and sisters I believe in the last days as God's people enter into the crisis at the close that they will carry with them the same atmosphere of heaven that the same Holy Spirit that was carry with Jesus wherever he went and worked on the Hearts bringing conviction to the conscience of people will be the same Holy Spirit that will go with God's people as they go from one place to another from one jail cell to another from one mock trial to another from one mistreatment to the other the Holy Spirit will go with us if we allow him to and that Spirit will work on the hearts and by God's grace there will be conversions because of it we 1st need to let the Holy Spirit convert our own hearts. Before he can be carried with us to work on the hearts of other people if this was a very intelligent man he could see that in the face of the people they were beginning to have sympathy towards the man he wanted to act quickly to take away that sympathy and replace it with a vengeance of destruction so the Bible says Matthew chapter 26 beginning in verse 60. First 59 now the chief priests and the elders and all the council sought false witness against Jesus to put him to death but found none yea though many false witnesses came yet found they none at last 2 false witnesses came over 61 and said This fellow said I am able to destroy the temple of God and build it in 3 days it's interesting. They resorted now I mean they paid Judas off gave him 30 pieces of silver to betray Jesus and now they're using underhanded manner underhanded methods to bring in false witnesses they bribe them probably with money or various other things position prestige whatever it may be they bribe these false witnesses and as one false witness after another came in to that trial and bore false witness they did not agree with one another and there Jesus stands majestically Nobili he stands before his accusers not a word comes from his mouth he just stands there and the chaos becomes thicker and thicker as one false accusation comes and contradicts the previous one there is a frustration that it begins to be created inside that judgment hall as these contradictions begin to take place and finally one man comes forward and this is the best that they could do and it said Jesus said that I am able to destroy the temple of God and build it in 3 days now you will notice very quickly that this has nothing to do with the Roman Empire if they were going to secure a condemnation by the Romans and they had to in order to kill a person they couldn't kill anybody by Jewish law alone they had to get the Roman law involved this had nothing to do with Roman law only had anything to do with Jewish law but even this was misconstrued because what Jesus really said in John Chapter 2 verse 1020 he said Destroy this temple and in 3 days I will raise it up he said nothing about himself destroying it he actually said that they would destroy it and of course we know he wasn't talking about the physical temple he was talking about the temple of his what this was the best they could do. False witnesses came in a fact Mark says that neither so did their witness agree together so even their witness was a contradiction but this was the best that they could do. This was desperate you need something to secure this is condemnation the Bible tells us in Isaiah Chapter 53 in verse 7 I love this passage it says he was oppressed and afflict it yet was. Not his mouth he was brought as a lamb to the slaughter and as a sheep before sure is dumb so he was open not his mouth Jesus would not open his mouth to defend himself he spoke but not in self-defense as we're going to see here in just a few moments notice what the Bible says and for 63 or 63 the Bible says but Jesus held his peace and the High Priest answering set on him IOW Jersey by the Living God That thou tell us whether that be the Christ the Son of God at this Jesus could no longer remain silent he would not defend himself but he would defend his father's character and so in answer to this a German by the High Priest Jesus says in verse 64 do the set on to him that now has said or in March up to 14 over 62 he says I am nevertheless I say unto you Jesus says He reactor shall you see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of Power and coming in the clouds of heaven filled with they say tannic fury K.I.I. if this face becomes construed gets this look of anger upon it as he stands up from his royal seat as he looks into the face of Jesus the Bible tells us he tears his clothes and shouts blasphemy. This men would take the position of God verse 6 and 5 it says this he has spoken blasphemy what further need have we of witness behold now you have heard his blasphemy What think ye is trying to carry the crowd along with him in coming in condemning Jesus to death listen to the statement from desire of ages page 608 says Little did chaotic this realize its meaning that is when he tore his clothes in this act done to influence the judges and secure Christ's condemnation listen carefully the high priest had condemned himself by the law of God He was disqualified from the priesthood he had pronounced upon himself the death sentence God had you know the High Priest garments were made very carefully they were made in a perfect manner because they were to represent the perfect character of Christ there was no blemishes in them and they were not to be Rent it was a custom of the Jews that when they were sad or distraught or heard something like this a blasphemous thing that they would rent their clothes but the high priest was not supposed to do that under the penalty of death but as the Jews were known for doing they made a man made law that only under the circumstance of blasphemy could they rent their clothes thus the laws of God were made of none effect through the laws of man they are if is said disqualified himself and in trying to pronounce death upon Jesus he pronounce death upon him so well the Bible continues there in verse 66 K. ifas asks the question What think ye the Bible says they answered and said. He is guilty of death listen to me carefully brothers and sisters influence is a powerful thing K.A.I.F. is used his influence and he influenced other people to condemn the Son of God and God has given to every one of us influence maybe your influence is limited maybe you have more influence but influence is powerful and I want to encourage you to use it for the Cause of God. K.I.I. if this carries the people with him and they pronounce death upon Jesus he is guilty of 1st 7 Chapter desiré just Page 710 goes on and it says this big night rabble had seen the cruelty with which he that is jesus was treated before the council and from this they took license to manifest all the SE tannic elements of their nature what she's what she's saying here is this as the people observed how their leaders were treating Jesus they took that as license and permission for them also to mistreat Jesus she goes on Christ's very nobility and god like bearing good at them to madness his meekness his innocence his majestic patience filled them with hatred born of Satan mercy and justice were trampled upon never was a criminal treated in so any humane manner as was the Son of God never had been one been mistreated as Jesus had I would encourage you with something this morning I have met people who have left the church. And you have given up on God because they've been mistreated by the clergy we've all heard about it fact maybe we have family members who are mistreated by those of religious leadership who have left the church and I want encourage your brothers and sisters there was never one who was more mistreated by religious people than Jesus and he never gave up on his relationship with God I would encourage you with that because those in religious leadership make mistakes we mistreat people not necessarily you know premeditated but sometimes accidentally sometimes God forbid that it happened here it is done on purpose with the intention of chasing that person away but brother and sisters we need to look to Jesus as our example he is our example in the times of suffering when we are mistreated when we are looked down upon when we are ridiculed even by the pastor himself we never let hold of our hand and our whole the punk God because our relationship with God is not dependent upon our relationships with other people our walk with the Lord is not depended upon how somebody else treats me my relationship with God is independent of how others treat me or mistreat me. And there we see Jesus and I'm not going to go into the details you can look at it on your see yourself in the book desire of ages because she goes into great detail of how they treated Jesus at this point covering his head hitting him in the head same prophesied unto us who it is that is hit you these people were filled with demonic fury as they saw in the character of God in Jesus as they saw these character this these these Christ like attributes and principles under the most trying of circumstances it filled them with the demonic fury and they just poured their wrath down upon the Son of God as he stood there in K.I.I. if this is court and Kay IAFIS and his father in law did nothing to stop them but the sisters you can't do this you just can't do this on your own and if they treated Jesus this way how will they treat the followers of Jesus sometimes I think we have a kind of a fairy tale idea of the end days but there will be martyrs in the last days there will be people who die because they believe in Jesus there will be people who die for Jesus in the last days they will be mistreated as Jesus was mistreated all of this stuff that we're looking at here this is what God's people have to look forward to in the crisis at the close of brothers sisters I want to tell you something this morning when God's people go through that hour of crisis they're not looking at the trial they're looking at the glory of what they're going to receive in the afterlife. They're looking at the the reward that is soon to come because in the mind of God's children who are going through this intense persecution as they're being squeezed by that crisis that the close they know that by Bible prophecy Christ's coming is very soon. They will be encouraged with the reality that if they hold on just a little longer if they remain faithful to God in this trial of Earth circumstances even if it cost them their life that soon they will be reunited with their Heavenly Father in the kingdom of heaven that is what God's people will be thinking about and looking for as they go through this trial at the close Revelation Chapter 14 in verse 12 the Bible tells us here is the patience of the Saints Here is the what here is the patience of the saints Now again we looked at this a couple of weeks ago in our state in our sermon on patience and as we looked at that passage we found that it comes right after the 3rd angel's message which is there in force made of the mark of the beast that is a time of intense religious persecution and as God looks down upon the earth during that time of intense religious persecution he says here is the patience of the say it's Jesus said Patience and that most trying of circumstances brothers or sisters God wants to give us the same experience and I want it more than anything because I want to be with Jesus in the kingdom of Bible tells us about those who walk during the time or walked during the time of the Dark Ages Daniel Chapter 11 in verse $32.00 Bible says that the people that do what the people that do what Noah their God will be what they will be srong the Bible tells us I will do exploits which means they will take action they will do things for God The people that know their God will be strong Did Jesus know his heavenly father did it translate in strength into strength. He was weak in the eyes of men he was feeble in the eyes of men his body broke down from those beatings but spiritually he could not be beat down he was strong because he was thick with his heavenly father he had a deep relationship of brothers sisters the same thing that happened in life of Jesus happened during the time of the dark ages during a time of intense religious persecution in the 1260 years of religious persecution that the Bible tells us in Daniel revelation these people knew their God and because they knew God they were what strong God's people in the last days in order for them to have strength to stand in that crisis that the close they need to what no God Bible tells us in John Chapter 7 in verse 3 and this is life eternal that they my. That they might know the the only true God and Jesus Christ whom thou had sent this is life eternal that they might know the not that they might know the latest fashions of the day the latest gossip in Hollywood the latest football baseball basketball scores you know there are some people our church that can rattle that stuff up much much more readily than what they learn in their devotions that morning come on now this is life I know that they might know God brothers and sisters I want to ask the question How well do you know your heavenly Father Jesus knew his Heavenly Father's so well that even though he was going through the most intense of persecution and suffering he knew that he was in his father's will. That he was doing what his father asked and that if he just remained faithful to his father God's will would be done in his life even though that dark hour was eclipsing him from his father's presence even though the weight of the sin of the world was separating Jesus at this point he knew his father so well because he walked with him he talked with him for 33 years he knew his father and he knew that he was in the middle of his father's will and that his father's approval was upon him that gave him strength in that dark hour it's not something that you acquire in the dark our brothers and sisters it's something that we acquire now today getting to know him walking with him talking to him learning to hear his voice and enjoy basking in his presence I want to encourage you this next week to say Lord I want to know you more I want the strength that Jesus had that the reformers had I want that same strength of knowing God to be something that I possess as well I'm if you want to say the same thing let's pray for that now Father in heaven as we look at this dark hour in the life of Jesus it is beyond human understanding how anybody could suffer in such a way and have their spiritual life intact Lord as I look at it I said there's no way there's no way that I could do that when I look to you I realize that all things are possible father you've warned us there is a crisis our coming and that now is our time of preparation. Father as we prepare we want to know you more than we do now we crave that experience of hearing your voice becoming customed to being in your presence to dislike not being in your presence Father we want to breathe the atmosphere of heaven that when that time of intense difficulty comes it would be nothing but Jesus that comes out no matter what man may heap upon us help us to this and Lord we pray as we look to Jesus as our example. Thank you. Frazier. For what you are doing. You know a lot. When we ask it in the 1st name of Jesus. This media was brought to you by audio 1st a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse or if you would like to listen to more sermons lead to visit W W W audio verse or.

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