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Truth Heard All Around the World

Tim Riesenberger


Tim Riesenberger

Emergency room physician in the Seattle area



  • July 28, 2011
    6:30 PM
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Copyright ©2011 ARME Bible Camp.

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00:00 Loving Father in Heaven, we just want to thank you and praise you and as our brother said give you all the glory and honor and praise. Lord, I just want to confess that I need you to use me, Lord, desperately. Use me in spite of myself, my weak un-Christ-like self. Lord, mold me, fashion me, raise me into the very presence of your throne room. I just ask that only Jesus Christ would be seen, heard, and felt; and that He may receive all the glory, for we ask it in His name. Amen.

00:40 How many of you are in school? I can tell you that I went to medical school and there is a lot of information to learn and it's like drinking out of a fire hydrant and not spilling a drop. That's how they describe it. But I can tell you I have a big problem when I learn information but I don't know why? Does that ever happen to you? (Yes.) And that is the same thing with the Bible. The Bible is a wonderful, wonderful letter but if you don't know who it's from and you don't know why they wrote it, you won't understand it. I can tell you that I learned the three words that unlocked the Bible to me July 9, 2007. I’m going to share just a little bit of that testimony that changed my life and I pray that it would change yours. I really appreciated what Martin shared this morning. How many of you were here at 6:15 a.m? Wow, praise God, that's incredible! I remember a quote that Martin shared that “revival is not happening unless Mr. Amen and Mr. Teary-eye are present”—did you remember that one? We’re not talking about emotionalism but we’re talking about the heart. We’re not just brains. We have hearts. I can tell you that this truth occurred while Mr. Teary-eye was very, very present.  I believe that many of you will feel God’s Spirit in that way, as well.

02:32 Our story begins with a very simple question. Does God love you? (Amen.) Good. He loves one person, that's good. Does God love Jesus, His Son? (Amen.) Does God love the angels around his throne? (Amen) Does God love the people who don't know about Him, yet? (Amen.) Does God love the people who know Him but choose not to follow Him? (Amen.) Does God love the evil angels? Does God love Satan? It’s very interesting as I go through this exercise it starts off yes! Yes! Yes! Yes? Maybe? I’m not sure. We’ll stick with the first question since that was pretty strong. If God loves you, why? (He created you.) Praise God! Genesis 1, absolutely!

03:42 I know of many people that have said 1 John 4:8 “God is love.” The definition of God is love. But I’m going to share with you a message that I received on my cell phone. It was in fact a text message. I was going through a very hard time; a great struggle that placed many things in my life in jeopardy. The text message was very simple it said, Tim, I'm claiming Luke 12, that God will give you the words to speak, when you need them. Whatever happens, I'm proud of you. I thought, wow! I mean, total disaster was facing me. Let me tell you if things did not go well, I would not be proud of me. But that text message led me to a story in the Bible.

04:42 You can open your Bibles with me to 2 Samuel 14:25. It's a story probably familiar to some of you; maybe not to others. “But in all Israel there was none to be so much praised as Absalom for his beauty: from the sole of his feet even to the crown of his head there was no blemish in him.” What's another word for someone who is head to toe, no blemish? They are? (Perfect) Who was Absalom? Do you remember? (He was the son of David.) He was perfect on the outside; but it doesn't always extend to the inside. Go on to 2 Samuel 15:1-6 we find Absalom getting up early in the morning like many of us did, right? But we were getting up early in the morning to raise our voices and our hearts to Christ in prayer, in worship. Absalom got up early and he prepared him chariots and men to run before him and Absalom stood beside the way of the gate. And as he’s at the gate there were the people of Israel coming to the king for judgment. When any man had a controversy then Absalom called him and said, of what city art thou? Thy servant is from one of the tribes of Israel. And Absalom would say, see your matters are good and right but there is no man deputed of the king to hear thee. Furthermore, he’d say, Oh, if my father David were king!—is that what he’d say? or, Oh, if I were made king, I would make the world right.—You’ve heard many people say that, right?—“that every man which hath any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice! And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him obeisance”—or bow to him—“he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him.” And by doing this, “Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.”

07:03 Absalom created Civil War in the nation of Israel. But it gets worse. Absalom gets the majority of the people on his side and he marches on the capital and does David stay and defend Jerusalem? No, he leaves. And when David leaves there’s a man that throws rocks and dust after him and is cursing him. He says, yes, God is getting you back for all the bloodshed that you spilled in the house of Saul. Was that true? Was David the murder of Saul? Do you remember what David did to Saul in the cave of Adullam? Does anyone remember that story? Saul goes in actually to relieve himself and who’s in the cave? David and one of his men. And his man whispers to David, God has delivered your enemy into your hand. 

08:08 I appreciated Dr. Parker’s presentation. A lot of people read the Bible and they say, God has told me to marry you. Then the young woman says, well, God hasn’t informed me of that. A lot of people blame God for things, and David's men were no exception. Watch: God has delivered your enemy into your hand. What did David say, I will not strike the Lord’s anointed.
In fact, David's conscience bothered him for just doing what? Cutting off a piece of the robe.

08:43 There was another time when Saul was asleep at the feet of David. Do you remember? Who was by David? Another one of his men. And he says, look the Lord has delivered him into your hand. In fact, this time the soldier knew that David wouldn’t want to do it so what did the soldier offer to do? I’ll strike him to the ground. One blow that's all I need. Did David give this man the order to kill Saul? No. He spared him over and over again. So this was all a lie. But David has one of his generals say the same thing. I can cut this guy’s head off. Why should he curse the king? And David says, let him curse because my own son who came out of my own body is—doing what?—seeking my life. How much more may this Benjamite do it; let him alone, and let him curse for the Lord has bidden him. It may be that the Lord will look on my infliction and that the Lord will requite me good this day for his cursing. Absalom was trying to kill his own father. But it gets worse. Then Absalom said to Ahithophel—who’s Ahithophel? He was Bathsheba’s grandfather. If you doubt that you can look at 2 Sam. 11: 3; 2 Sam. 23:34, if you want to do some history and you’ll see who the father was and who the father of that guy was. Then you’ll realize he was the grandfather of Bathsheba. How do you think he felt about David? How would you feel if the president of your country assassinates your grandson-in-law, after sleeping with your granddaughter, and lies about it to everybody? You’d probably be pretty upset. So he was waiting to even the score with the house of David. So he was one of the first ones to change sides. And as Absalom has set up his kingdom in Jerusalem, he says give me counsel what should I do? And Ahithophel says take your father’s wives that he's left to take care of the house, and sleep with all of them. Was this done in the basement, in secret? No! This was done on the house top, in the sight of all Israel. Friends, you don't get worse than incest times ten?

11:37 So now David in 2 Sam. 18:1-5 is facing what is probably his final battle because who has the superior force? Who has the larger force, do you know? Is it Absalom or is it David? Absalom. The servant of the Lord tells us that compared to Absalom’s army, David’s men were a little handful, insurmountable odds. And as he’s sending his men out in 2 Sam. 18:1-5, he gives them a final order. In that order was it God will give you victory? Was it thank you, for risking your lives for me? What was the order? “Deal gently, for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom.” Did he whisper this in their ears? It says that all the people heard when the king gave commandment concerning Absalom.

12:44 So to fast-forward David's men are victorious. Absalom sees he's beaten and he turns to flee but he doesn't get far. Does anyone remember what happened to him? (He gets caught by his hair on a branch) the mule keeps going but he's suspended in midair and a soldier finds him. And what happens? Nothing. Remember? The first soldier finds him and then he goes and gets Joab, and he says, Absalom is hanging in a tree. And Joab says, you just left him there? why didn't you kill him? I would have given you a reward. And the soldier answers his commanding officer, “though I should receive a 1,000 shekels of silver in mine hand, yet would I not put forth mine hand against the king’s son: for in our hearing the king charged thee and Abishai and Ittai, saying, Beware that none touch the young man Absalom.” So Joab says, I’m not going to waste my time, whatever. And he takes not one, not two, but three spears thrust them into the heart of Absalom. As he’s in shock in the tree, ten men surround him, they wail on him until he dies, they throw him in a pit, they throw a bunch of rocks on him, and that's the end of Absalom. 

14:18 But who’s waiting in the city? David is waiting to hear the news. The first messenger comes and he says, all is well. He fell down to the earth upon his face before the king and he says, blessed be the Lord thy God which has delivered up the men that have lifted up their hand against my lord, the king. And the king says, praise the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? Is that what he says? He has one question and that is, is the young man Absalom safe? he gives him a nebulous answer. So the next messenger arrives and he gives the same news. Tidings my lord, the king, for the Lord has avenged thee this day of all them that rose up against thee. And he says, you know the other guy said that. God who delivered me from the mouth of the lion and the bear has delivered me again. Is that what he said? Do you realize he asked the exact same question with the exact same words? “Is the young man Absalom safe?” And Cushi answered, “The enemies of my lord the king, and all that rise against thee to do thee hurt, be as that young man is.” So David now knows that Absalom is dead. 

15:49 I want you to look at 2 Sam. 18:33 very carefully, “And the king was much moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept: and as he went, thus he said, O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!” Did David love Absalom because Absalom was a loyal citizen of his country?

16:38 Does anyone know that there was a war in the United States that killed more of our people than all the wars of history combined in our country? That was the Civil War where brother fought against brother. We slaughtered one another. That is what Absalom did to the nation of Israel. So perhaps then David loved Absalom because he was such a loving and affectionate son. He gave so much affection to his dad. No. He was trying to kill his dad! That wasn’t the reason. Well, perhaps David loved Absalom because he had a pure and upright moral character. You know friends, you don't get worse sexually than incest times ten. So, that's not why David loved Absalom. So, why in the world would David love wicked, wicked Absalom? Why? because wicked though he was to the core, he was after all David’s son. At that moment, the Lord spoke three words to my mind that will always burn there as long as I live. And it wasn't like it was fire in the sky, I didn’t see anything. I didn't go to the closet to open it up to see if someone had spoken. It wasn’t an audible voice. I say that the Lord spoke to me because an entirely new thought came to my mind. And it went something like this, Tim, I don't love you because you’re a doctor and you save people’s lives every day that you work. Tim, I don't love you because you’re a missionary and you spend your time in my cause. Tim, I don't love you because you give of your money to my people. Tim, I don't love you because of the friends you have or even the character you've developed, or the fact that you’re a Seventh-day Adventist or that you keep my commandments. All these things make me happy and they please me but it has never been why I love you. Tim, I love you because—and here are the three words—you are mine. At that moment I fell to my knees and I cried more than I've ever cried in my life because I saw God for the first time and I understood why He loves me. I understood why He wrote the Bible and I realized that I had seen this truth so many times before and I'll show it to you.

20:05 Come with me to the emergency department and I will take you to a Level 1-Trauma Center. I trained at three of them: Stanford University, San Francisco General, and Santa Clara Valley. The ambulance calls me. They said, we have a level one trauma coming in 5 minutes. A 15 year old driver T-boned at 70 mph critically injured. His whole left chest is caved in. He has multiple facial fractures, multiple rib fractures, he has no pulse, he is not breathing, paramedics cannot intubate, CPR in progress, 5 minutes out—I suit up, boots, gloves, face shield, 4 units of blood waits in that trauma bay for that young man. The x-ray plates down, ortho is at my hand and neurosurgery is at the feet of the bed. They wheel him in. The paramedics are doing CPR and with every compression I hear crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch because he has multiple rib fractures. His face is just a mess of blood and broken bones but I manage to find somewhere the vocal cords and slip the tube into his windpipe so he can breathe. I turn on the machine and a column of blood goes up and down the machine. And I realize I need to quickly put in a chest tube deflate all the blood and re-inflate his lung. I slap some iodine on this young man's chest, slash it open with my scalpel, put in a chest tube, and it begins to drain but it drains a quart, and another quart, and after the third quart starts coming out, I clamp the tube, and I step back because he will die. But someone catches the look in my eyes behind the mask and shield, and they say No! No! Why? Why wasn't it me driving instead of him today?—who was that? That was his father who was actually thrown clear of the accident. He was giving his son time to drive. He was earning his permit when he was killed by a drunk driver. But the father mourned the fact that he wasn’t one seat over to take the hit of death for his boy. 

22:54 Come with me again and I'll show you an 8 year old girl with critical leukemia. The nurses beg me to see her before everyone else because she's vomiting in the waiting room. I give them order for fluids; I give them order for medications. They wheel her back into the room and this girl, who's 8, looks like she’s 4. She's lost all of her hair. She's sunken and she’s malnourished from the effects of the chemo and radiation. We try our best but she vomits up her lunch, she vomits up clear saliva, she vomits up yellow and green and then when red blood starts coming up, I hear a voice in the room say Why? Why couldn't it have been me with the cancer instead of her?—and who was that? That was her mother who wished that she could trade places with her daughter that was vomiting her life onto my floor and died.

24:16 And I can tell you dozens of stories, after story, after story. A young man in a gang was shot in the chest and the bullet went through his heart and as he was in the emergency department in the bay his eyes sunk back, and his pulse went flat-line. I knew what I needed to do and I slashed open his chest and did a thoracotomy, opened him up, clamped his aorta to shunt his blood from his legs to his brain. I took the bullet hole and stapled it closed with my own hands. I shocked that heart right directly on the surface and injected epinephrine right into the heart and squeezed it to do CPR; 4 more units of blood, 4 more units of blood. I kept calling. We would lose him and then we would get him back. We would lose him and then we would get him back. I had used 40 units of blood when the hospital bank called us up and said, Dr. Riesenberger, there is no more O-negative blood in this hospital. And someone pushes through the crowd, gets past my nurses and then past me and lays on the gurney next to this young man and says I have O-negative take as much as you need—who was that? That was the boy’s father who hadn't seen him in years (the boy was a runaway); but he found him right before he died.

26:01 I can tell you that these parents are not from Christian backgrounds. Not one of them is Christian; but they have the truth that transforms the world written on their hearts by the hand of God Himself. I have seen so many parents. The cases are different; but the reactions are the same. I can tell you even the horrible parents in the waiting room that are slapping their children around, you stupid whatever, whatever; when the child goes downhill. Well, it’s like a switch flips on their head and they become the most caring parents imaginable. You better save him or I’m going to sue you. (Laughter.) The child can be the worst child imaginable, it doesn't matter. When they're critically injured every single parent would give everything they owned for just a moment in time. Just the chance, not a guarantee, just the chance to have them back one more time! I see parents who stay up for days at a time at the bedside of their child, and as long as that child is sick where do you think the parent is? They are right there! I've pled with parents, you need to lie down, you need to sleep, you need to eat; but they say not now; not while my child is still in trouble. They don't even think of their own needs; they will pay any price even at the cost of themselves.

27:52 That is how God loves you and why He does. But it is only a very faint glimmer of the love of God, but I believe you need to see it because it does reflect why God loves you. You know what's the best verse in the Bible? What’s the verse everybody knows? John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” But what does that mean? Most of us can just say that by rote but we don't understand what it means; and amazingly enough, as we learned today often times the Bible explains itself and in this case God knew it was so important that He put it in the same place but just in 1 John 3:16, “Hereby”—what?—“perceive we”—what does perceive mean? understand—“hereby perceive we”—what?—“the love of God”—and how do we see that?—“because He laid down His life”—for you!—and that is what I'm showing you today. God loves you as a father and mother love their only child; and let me tell you, you don't see that love until that child is critical and then you see something that is unexplainable. It is absolutely divine! But you know people tell me all the time, you don’t understand Tim, I’ve just gone too far. In fact, I’ve committed the unpardonable sin. I’m certain. I’m just going straight down. There's no question. In fact, this weekend I stood in front of a young woman. She was a young woman who made many mistakes. She had various little children and no husband in sight. And she looked me in the eyes and she says I'm that person. I know I'm lost. I tried to plead with her to understand that she had not committed the unpardonable sin because I'll show you when the unpardonable sin occurs.

30:35 I got a call in the ER, a 7 month old was put to sleep on his stomach (don’t do that) by his grandmother. When she went to wake him up, he was blue and not breathing. She tried to resuscitate him but could not. She called 9-1-1. The paramedics arrived. They were unable to put the tube in his vocal cords but they were giving him oxygen, doing CPR, they brought him in. As they bring this little child in they’re doing compressions, really quick on this little baby and they put him down in front of me and I put an endotracheal tube that's the size of a little straw right through his vocal chords and I turn on my machine. I turn on my monitor, and it's a big flat line or maybe not; maybe it's tricular fibrillation. Shock him—boom! Nothing. We give him epinephrine. We give him atropine. We give him fluid. We shock him some more. We do CPR. We put in a line. We put in medications, and we begin to fight for the life of this baby. 10 minutes go by, 20 minutes go by, 30 minutes go by, and at 30 minutes something always happens—as I’m running the code and directing my nurses and my techs—I hear footsteps behind me and I already know who it is at 30 minutes—it’s always the same. They stop and they pause for a moment then they tap me on the shoulder and I turn around—who is it? it’s the parents. In this case, it was the father of the child. And he says, Dr. Riesenberger, I want to thank you for all you've done for Johnny but my boy has not breathed, moved, and you know I've been watching your monitor this whole time and all I see is a big flat line and I watch ER at home and I know that's not good. So Sir, in your professional opinion I have a question for you—and it's always the same question, it never changes—Sir, in your professional opinion, is there any hope? Is there any hope that my son will live again and have any sort of brain function? and if I were to say Mr. Johnson, my monitor is different than yours and I saw his heartbeat a couple times on its own. You know we arrived here before you and before you arrived he breathed on his own several times. I even saw him move and obey a command somewhat. I think we have a small chance—what do you think he would say?—Keep going! Why are you talking to me? Work on my son!—but that's not what I said. I said, Mr. Johnson, your right. Your son, even if he revived right now, even if I could get his heart beating, and his blood pressure back, and him breathing right now, he’s gone. His brain is dead. There is no hope—that is when the unpardonable sin occurs!

34:19 When God looks into your soul and He knows that there's no more that He can do. He does what any loving parent always tells me to do. What do you think? Shock him a few more times! Poke him a few more times! Why? Why would you do that? Who in this room would want their child’s last memories to be pain, unnecessary pain? What do you think they ask me to do? They say, can you turn off your machine? Can you clear off all the tubes and stuff? Can you guys just give us a few minutes alone to say good-bye to our child? What do I do? Time of death is 2:34 a.m., clear your needles, clear your sharps, give the Johnsons time with their son. I walk out of the room. I pull the curtain. And he dies.

35:41 If I can explain it to you, this is what happens spiritually. Does anyone know what these things are? Does anyone know what these things do? They are going to shock you. And what am I trying to do? Trying to get your heart back, trying to revive you. Do you know what the term medically is for it? Cardio version. But did you know what the verb is? The nurses sometimes after we’ve shocked somebody, they're not sure what rhythm they’re in and they’ll say Dr. Riesenberger, did the patient convert? Did you know that that's the language? Coincidence? I think not. When I shock you at a certain voltage if you don't convert, do you know what happens to the heart? it becomes resistant to that voltage. So next time I have to turn it up. Then if that doesn’t work, then turn it up. But friends at 200 joules you’re maxed out.

37:06 If I turn it up more you’ll bake. If I shock you—zap, zap, zap—3 times at 200 and it doesn't work, you die if nothing else is working. And that’s what happens to your heart spiritually and when that occurs can you imagine if I came up to the parents and I said, O Mrs. Johnson, it’s okay you don't have to worry, you know you're young you could have another child and you can call him Johnny; in fact, he might look similar. How would that be? Don't you see God is our Creator? but not like He creates a science experiment; He can't just squish you and start over. Do you understand? Is there anyone here who has 10 children? Okay, 9? Anyone have 8? Okay, let's say you have 10. How many lambs do you want to be saved? (All of them.) What is your name? Joey? I’m Tim. How about 6 out of 10? But that's the majority. No? (It's not all) Alright. How about 9 out of 10? But did you know 9/10 is an A? 90 % is that enough? (No.) Don't you see that every single parent responds the same? Math doesn't work here. Grades do not work here. 

39:20 Is anyone a twin here besides Martin and Calvin? Anyone a twin? You’re a twin? Wow, several twins. What if I told your mother that you were killed in a car accident but since she still had the other twin it was okay since you’re the same? How would she feel about that? She’d probably slap me and I’d be fired. Let's say God did create another you. He changed everyone's mind and all your parents and friends thought it was you. Who would still know? God would still know. At last the Bible now makes sense to me.

40:06 2 Peter 3:9 “For God is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that”—what?—“any should perish but that”—how many should come to repentance?—“all should come to repentance.” Do you see why God wants all? He won't rest while there's one lost. How do you think if a man have a 100 sheep and 1 of them be gone astray does he not leave—what?—the 99 and goes into the mountains to seek that which is gone astray—He leaves the 99 alone and goes after how many? One.

40:58 I have people ask me about this and they just don't understand that God is our Creator like a father and a mother have brought you into this world. You can't be replaced. I've had a lot of people ask me about the fall and they say Tim, let's say Eve comes with a handful of mangoes or whatever it is and she offers them to Adam and says this is the greatest thing and he says no, I’m good. What would've happened to the human race? What would’ve happened? Would God have created another Eve? What would’ve happened? Remember Adam made the choice for the race but Eve was deceived, you understand that? I think what's a more important question is what about the plan of redemption? What would've happened as a modification to the plan of redemption because remember there's only Eve that's lost. The plan of redemption would've gone forward, unchanged because as Melody pointed out from the Desire of Ages that the Savior would've passed through the agony of Calvary for—how many?—that one might be saved in His kingdom. He will never abandon one for whom He has died. He would come just to save Eve, if she were the only one lost—and can't you see?—He would've come if only one of you were astray. But you remember what I asked you before? You may think you're as bad as the devil, maybe worse. The devil once was good and you’re like as long as I can remember I’ve been bad. But I asked you that question where some of you went oh, maybe. Does God love Satan? 

43:15 Matthew 5:44 Jesus Christ—God in the flesh—says, “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” Is God a hypocrite? Does He tell you to do one thing but doesn't do it Himself? You know who God’s enemy is? Do you know what Satan’s name means? It actually means Sa Tan the adversary. Does God follow his own commandments? Of course He does! But there’s a deeper reason. There was once one who was perfect from head to toe; he rebelled against his father, he lied to his father’s subjects, he tried to kill his father; and committed adultery with his father’s bride. Who was it? Oh, don't you see the story of Absalom is the story of the great controversy. What was David's desire for even wicked Absalom? Would to God that I had been able to—do what for you?—to die for you! It really makes you think, doesn't it? But there is a difference between you and Satan, and I’ll show you the difference.

44:54 Romans 2:4 tells us the only thing that brings you to repentance and what is that?—the what of God?—“the goodness of God leads you to repentance.” What was Satan’s job in heaven? Ezekiel 28: says that he was the cherub that what? Covered. So if God is here, Satan was here. You’re not going to get any closer to God. Do you see that? How much more of God’s goodness could He show him? That’s the difference between you and Satan. In fact look at these two passages, I won't tell you where they are right now, the sheep and goats. “Then shall the King say unto them on His right hand, Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: Then shall He say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for”—it doesn’t say you! (“prepared for the devil and his angels.” Mat. 25:34, 41.) How many people did God design to be lost? Zero! But in every single sermon someone says “you” because we’re deceived. We don’t understand why God loves us. God’s plan is to save every one and He won't rest until He has them home or until there’s no more hope. This quote’s from Desire of Ages (DA 78:761.5), it tells you the difference between you and Satan. “But even as a sinner, man was in a different position from that of Satan. Lucifer in heaven had sinned in the light of God’s glory. To him as to no other created being was given a revelation of God’s love. Understanding the character of God, knowing His goodness, Satan chose to follow his own selfish, independent will. This choice was final.”—but why was it final? God just said you pass the line, your toast. Is that why it was final? this choice was final, why?—“There was no more that God could do to save him.”—that is why it was final. God looked into his soul and He knew there's nothing coming out that’s going to convince Him. There's no more that He could show him of His goodness because he knew. And if the only thing that brings you back is God’s goodness and you know it all, what more is God going to do? He does what any good parent would do, they throw it all out, and the kitchen sink, and then themselves, and if that doesn't work, what more can they do? This choice was final. Why? “There was no more that God could do to save him.”—but here's you and I—“But man was”—what?—“deceived; his mind was darkened by Satan’s sophistry. The height and depth of the love of God he did not know. For him”—for me, for us—“there was hope in the knowledge of”—what?—“God’s love. By beholding His character he might be drawn back to God.” (Desire of Ages, 78:761.5) That’s the difference between you and I, and Satan. I'm a sinner. Anyone a sinner? Satan’s a sinner; we’re both sinners, right? But I don't know “the height and the depth of the love of God.” I didn't even understand why God loved me until July 9, 2007. But now I see. I'm not deceived anymore.

49:20 Have any of you ever woken up in the dark, it’s pitch black and you don't know where you are? Has that ever happened? You don't know which side of the bed your head is on. Where it is; but what happens when someone just cracks the door a little bit and the light comes on? What do you immediately know?—where you are. Well, that's what God has done to my heart. He’s cracked my heart and shown me why He loves me. The Bible is a completely new book for me because when I read every precept, every promise, every judgment, and every warning, it’s all the same thing. Do you realize that? It's all just my Dad trying to get me back. When I see things that are confusing in the Bible—why God executes judgment—I know it's because He has to pull the ventilator because it’s too late because He loves them; just like He loves you and I. Everything God does: from blessing to cursing, from prophecy to judgment, He’s just trying to get his lambs home. Don’t you see that? That’s all it is. That's all it ever was. And that's all it ever will be. It’s God’s love for you and for me.

50:50 The story of Absalom is perfect because someone might come to the conclusion that since God loves you, like that parent loves you, that everyone is going to be saved, right? Rob Bell, you're not correct. (Amen.) Everyone is not going to be saved. I’m sorry. Think of the story of Absalom. David's love for Absalom was what kind of love? Unconditional, right? The guy was bad and David’s like, oh, if only I could have died instead of this guy. And you’re like, what?—When you realize who he was, then you understand. David’s love for Absalom was unconditional but what happens to Absalom at the end of the story? He dies. And let me tell you right now, brothers and sisters, if you continue in sin you will die! There's no doubt in my mind. But if you do, God will mourn as One who mourns for His only son. He will try every means available humanly or divinely possible to turn you around and He will try over and over and over and over again until you walk away from Him; not Him walk away from you. Go back to the 7 month old boy. Imagine the parents turn to me and they say Dr. Riesenberger, there’s no more hope can you turn off the vent? and I say you turn it off. Could you do it? No. You couldn’t. You can’t. That’s your son. But do you realize that God is the only One in the universe that can truly give or take away life? Do you understand that? And at the end of time, who will have to pull the plug? It is God Himself. And what will He say? How will He feel when there's no more hope? How will He treat you? How will He say good-bye? 
53:00 I get more hate mail about this sermon than all the other sermons I preach. It’s true. Every time I preach it I get one person who says, you know what, when our probation closes, God no longer loves you. Can you imagine that? David, come home. David, come home. My son, please come home! I'm waiting for you—oh, wait you’re probation is closed? Get away from me—what would you wonder, Dave? You would wonder if the love was real ever, right? Let me tell you, it’s not God that gives up. It’s us. God will never give up as long as there is even .00001/100 infinity % chance to save you. 

53:50 Here’s how God feels when you are finally lost. Look at how God feels. “Say unto them as I live says the Lord I have no pleasure in the death of the righteous— but wait a minute, who? What happens to their probation when a wicked person dies? They’re gone. Do you realize that? And how does God feel about that?—“I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye, from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel?” (Eze. 33:11.) 

54:24 Hosea 11:8 says the same thing as Israel is closing its probation he says, “How shall I give you up, Ephraim? How shall I deliver thee, Israel? How shall I make thee as Admah? How shall I set thee as Zeboim? mine heart is”—what?—“turned within me.” If you rise from the dead in which resurrection, first or second? You want to be up in the first, right? When you rise the first thing you’re going to do is not look for your angel or even give Jesus a hug. Do you know what you’re going to look for first? You tell me. Who? Your children. That’s right. They always say the same thing. And you’ll count 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, I’m missing # 8. And you'll ascend to heaven. You won't go to the Tree of Life. You won’t play with the lion and the lamb. You won't even go see your mansion. You know where you’ll go first? To the throne room of God and you’re going to have one question. The question will only have one word in it and what is it? Why. Why? And God—I don't know what He’ll say but I believe He’ll say to you, take a look at the books, look at the empty mansions, why? There's no reason why. I tried my best to save them. And during those 1,000 years you will mourn as you've never mourned before but Isaiah holds comfort because it says that God at the end will wipe away all tears (Isa. 25:8) and it says that certain things are not going to be remembered (Isa. 65:17). I don't know what those things are but I believe it’s going to be that child you lost. He’ll have to wipe away that memory because even though you understand it, you’re not going to feel good at all. And neither will God because at the end of time you may lose one but how many does He lose? Many more. God will mourn more than anyone else. What I'm going to close with is what would God say at the end? I believe you see more of the love and heart of God when your probation is closed than when it's open and I'll tell you why. I can't tell you exactly how God is going to respond when He has to pull the plug but you know that I have an idea, you know why? because sometimes when I pronounce that child dead and I walk out of the room and I close the curtain you know what I do? I listen and I hear and I understand why God loves you. It's a little different each time but here's how it goes: Goodbye our little treasure, mommy and daddy love you so much. We’re going to miss you. Sissy loves playing with you but she’ll have to find another playmate. The doctors and nurses did everything they could but now it's too late. Go to sleep little child. Go to sleep. God will say sleep for ever. And you will die; but God will mourn as no parent has ever mourned for his child because you belong to Him. Amen.

58:14 I'd like to make an appeal now. I’d like each of you to see God for the first time. Perhaps, I don't think there's any better way to explain His love than Isaiah 49:14-15 it says, “But Zion said, The Lord has forsaken me, and my Lord has forgotten me. Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb?” How many parents are here? Wow! God’s love is reflected through you but did you know that sometimes they may forget. You see that's what it says. “Yea, they may forget, yet I will not forget you.” Why? We’re written, every one of us is written somewhere? Where? “Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of My hands; thy walls are continually before me.” (Isa. 49:16.) Does anyone speak Spanish? Do you know what the word for walls is in that verse? It’s the word muros. And what does the word muro sound to you in English? Murals. What’s a mural? It's a picture that tells a story about someone. Do you realize it's like a child who draws a picture? Where do all those pictures go? On the refrigerator, right? So that the parents can look at them always. It might be this big orange scribble. Someone comes in and there like, what is that?—that’s me can’t you tell? There’s my head. That side is an arm; another arm—only one thing down there—that's one leg. It's me and I'm proud of it—because that's from your son or your daughter. God has those murals of remembrance of everything we've done before Him and He remembers. He doesn't forget but can you imagine at the end of time when you have gone through the Books and God has wiped away the memory of that lost child because I believe He'll have to do that when the heavens pass away and sin and sinners are no more there is only one thing that remains—do you know what that is?—His scars. And I ask you where is every man, woman, and child written? God can't forget! He can't forget because you’re His child. Do you understand that? If you are a human being and you can feel that love for your child, how much greater is the love of God? But if you're missing, if one of you in this room is missing God will mourn. Have any of you known a parent that has lost a child? Are they ever the same? I don't care how functional they are, let’s say they go through Kübler Ross and all the stages; are they still ever the same? No. They’ll never be the same until the resurrection and do you know why? Because there is a part missing from them. Do you understand that?

1:02:23 If one of you is missing there will be a part missing from the heart of God because God can’t forget. Do you see that?  I’m going to make an appeal with Isaiah 43:1 put your name here. How many people here have never been baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist church? Just a few of you. This is an appeal for you. I want you to read this verse and put your name there, “But now thus says the Lord who created you, _______ (O Tim—that’s my name), and He that formed thee, fear not for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name—here are the three words—you are mine.” You belong to God! You always have. Saved or lost, good or bad, Satan didn’t create you. Do you realize that? You’re God’s! You’re His son and you always will be. When you hear those three words and you believe them for the first time something happens. “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you: when you walk through the fire, you shall not be”—what?—“burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon you.” (Isa. 43:2.) I’m going to have someone play softly on the piano and I’m going to make an appeal. How many of you have seen God’s love in a new way tonight? Praise God! 

1:04:31 I can tell you that everything in the Bible is different now for me and when I learned this truth I made a decision to be rebaptized actually because you know even if you understand the Sabbath and you can explain the 2300 days and you’re vegan organic (laughter), if you don't understand why God loves you then you’ve missed out. If you don't understand that every verse in the Bible is just a reflection of those three words then you will never understand its secrets as you should. I made a decision to be rebaptized because I learned that fundamental new truth. The reasons for re-baptism are fundamental new truths, if you were sprinkled as a child and you weren’t immersed and the last is if you have apostatized. Now only you may know that. There is a difference between doing your homework and the sun's down—oh, no, I broke the Sabbath!—and taking that job on Friday night. You see the difference? Sin is one. Apostasy is the other. For those of you who have not made a decision for baptism I hope that you've heard God’s voice tonight and if you want to make a decision to come forward and say back to him, I'd like to learn about you. I'd like to learn and study to be baptized. I would like you to come forward right now; please come forward. Praise God! Amen. If you have made that decision and you’ve not yet gone through with the decision for baptism come forward. Praise God! Amen. This is just for people who have never been baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist church. Come forward, please. Praise God! (Cheyenne, I’m so proud of you.) Amen. Anyone who has never been baptized before? Have you seen God’s love tonight? Praise God! Amen. Praise God! Come forward. Amen. Praise God! Did you know that there is joy in heaven over—how many? One, because Jesus would have come and died for—how many? —one. Just like you and just like every parent, right? Everyone, would you have done it? Sure you would have. Praise God. Is there anyone else who has never been baptized before into the Seventh-day Adventist church and would like to respond to the love of God? Praise God! The love of God that I saw for 10 years as a doctor as I looked into the eyes of those parents and I saw why God loved me and that He was willing to give it all just for the chance of seeing me again. Praise God. Is there anyone else who has never been baptized before but would like to be baptized? We are not going to baptize you now but if you would like to learn as I have learned; as all of us have learned, right? About the Bible but more than the Bible; about the God behind the Bible! The One who wrote the Bible. I'd like you to come forward if you have not made that decision but you'd like to begin today. Come forward. Praise God. Come on forward. Amen. Praise God. (Come on up, sweetheart.) Can you say amen? (Amen.) I don't know how many times your heart has been shocked. I don't know how many times God has turned up the voltage; but I know for some of you that time is running out. I know that God is watching and He doesn't have—praise God! Praise God!—I know that God wants how many of us? All! How many of us did he design to be lost? Zero. God’s will is to save all because you as a parent want to save—all! The gospel is not complicated. You can see it in the eyes of a father and mother; but you know some of us didn't understand it because we did not see that unconditional love. I had parents who did not show me this love. I had to see it through your eyes, through yours and yours and yours; as you brought those children in and I did my best to save them. Though they went to sleep, as they went to rest, God’s love flashed before me for a moment and I see Him at last; but it looks like I'm not the only one who has seen Him. Is there any more who have chosen to be baptized in the Seventh-day Adventist church? Let me tell you there’s more to our church than the Sabbath. We have an understanding of the gospel that is like no other because it is the gospel of the Bible and of Jesus Christ. Is there anyone else? I’m going to open it up now to those of you who, like myself, have perhaps made a decision not knowing certain fundamental truths like this; perhaps like the Sabbath, perhaps the sanctuary, perhaps here at ARME you have learned through Pastor Myers, through Pastor Parker, through various teachers, in the prayer room, I don't know, if you have learned a fundamental new truth or if you were not baptized Biblically by immersion, if you were sprinkled, or if you have apostatized but you have come home and you would like to be rebaptized I want you to come forward and make that decision as I did. Only God knows your heart. I can't read it. None of us can read it. No matter how many times you spend in the prayer room, you can still deceive us all; but you know you can't fool God. He knows. If you know you need to make the same decision as dozens of young and old have made, come forward; make that decision for Christ tonight. Praise God! Amen! Praise God! 

1:13:12 There was a young man in India—I did a campaign—and he said Dr. Riesenberger I have waited for 13 years to be rebaptized. Do you know why he waited? No one called. He said I was baptized when I was 12 years old and all I understood was tithe and the Sabbath and that's it; and since the week of prayer I have learned why God loves me, I've learned about all of our doctrines, and he was a seminary student! A seminary student who never heard a call for baptism, how does this happen? Not at ARME. If there is anyone like that seminary student who's been waiting for that call to be rebaptized come forward; it doesn't matter who's watching. I just told you myself I made the decision. Come forward. Is there anyone else? I’m so proud of you guys. Praise God! How many of you want to rededicate your lives and support these people? Please stand. Now this is serious because you are promising to support them and talk to them and pray with them. I want you guys to know that you are welcome to my e-mail address, to my cell phone number—and I'm serious, everyone who makes a decision for baptism in one of my appeals gets 24/7 access. I won't answer the phone all the time but I will call you back. You’ve got a lot of support out there. But even if every sinner let’s you down you know there's one person who doesn't change and that's Jesus Christ and He never will. Good or bad, saved or lost, we belong to Him. Obviously, I hope you will be saved. You belong to God. You always have. You always will. Nobody created you but God. Satan didn’t die for you. An angel didn’t die for you. Jesus Christ died for you! I’ve had parents who are willing to sacrifice an organ for a child. But sometimes a child’s heart is failing and to get a heart transplant in order for you to live what does it mean? Someone has to die. You know David wished he could've traded places with Absalom. But did he? No. But Jesus did trade places with you. He gave His heart that you might live. Let’s kneel for prayer as we submit these decisions to Him.

1:16:52 Loving father in Heaven, loving Father in Heaven, we see you at last. All these years I’ve just been running away from my Dad; all the sin, all the rebellion. Lord, just running away from the One who died for me. Lord, ever since I heard those three words: you are mine, they have repeated in my mind since that day. The only difference now is that I not only hear because you’re mine but I choose to say back to you: because I'm yours. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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