The Sower and The Seed

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 09

Ignorance is defined as not knowing the truth and you can’t walk in a right relationship with Jesus when you don’t know the truth. The only way you can walk in what God has sanctioned to give you is by removing ignorance and bringing in truth, knowledge and wisdom. Today, we will study one of the most important parables in the Bible about the sower and the seed found in Luke 8:1-18. Jesus tells us that those who accept His Word will accept Him and they will be pliable and listen with open hearts and minds. He tells us Believers will be given wisdom to understand the truth because they are seeking the truth in His Word. Likewise, to everyone that doesn’t accept Jesus and His Word are not looking for the truth and to them the Bible will be nothing more than just another story. “Now the parable is this: The seed is the Word of God” (Verse 11) that is planted in the hearts of those who seek the truth and accept Jesus. We read in John 1:14, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…” and this means a part of Jesus is sewn into the heart of a Believer, but what happens to the seeds that are sewn by the wayside?

“Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved” (Verse 12). This means Satan comes to take the part of Jesus that came into them by hearing His Word. Those that fall by the wayside do not experience salvation. “But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who for a while and in times of temptation fall away” (Verse 13). When people have no root or no truth they will fall away. Although they walk for a while with the Lord and they move toward the Word of God, but in times of temptation they have no root. “Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity” (Verse 14). They hear the Word of God and they experience growth and expand their knowledge for awhile. They understand who Jesus is and what belongs to them, but eventually the world system chokes the Word out of them and they no longer bear fruit for the kingdom. They might still attend Church, but they don’t grow on toward maturity and some even fall away.  

It is very important that you understand this parable because this is how the kingdom of God works. When the Word of God is preached people have a choice. They can believe what is taught and begin to walk in it or they can choose not to believe. In the parable of the sower and the seed we are told about four different hearts where the Word of God is brought in, presented and heard by everyone. We must understand that the Word in us is the fruit that we bear. It is the light that we show. It is the example we give others of who Jesus is in our lives. The light we show others is an outward manifestation of His Words in our hearts. Amen.

Be blessed,

Sebastian

The Healing Ministry Of Jesus

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 08

Jesus routinely healed and set people free during His ministry. Those who were oppressed in their minds or had demonic oppression would receive healing spiritually, physically and mentally. Jesus walked in the power of the Spirit of God and He changed lives and opened people’s eyes. We read in Luke 4:18-19, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” Mary Magdalene was someone who was demonically oppressed and Jesus set her free of demons.

Matthew 8:2-3 tells us about thousands of people following Jesus when a leper approached, “And behold a leper came and worshiped Him saying, ‘Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.’ Then Jesus put out His hand and touched him, saying, ‘I am willing; be cleansed.’ Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.” What I want you to see here is that Jesus stopped and He didn’t care about anyone else around Him because He is focused on the cry for help from the leper. Jesus told him He would heal him and He touches the leper. At that time, a leper was not supposed to be amongst the population, but Scripture tells us Jesus touched him and he was healed. What else was unique about the leper? He was a Jew because Jesus told him to go back and present himself to the priests. What do we learn about Jesus in these two healings? Part of His ministry was healing, He healed a woman who was oppressed by demons and He healed a Jew who was bound in disease.

Again we learn that Jesus stopped with thousands following Him, to listen to a Centurion who is a gentile and doesn’t know the Old Testament, but he asked Jesus to come to his house and heal one of his servants. I want you to study the heart of Jesus here because His door is always open and His answer is always yes. He tells the Centurion He will come and heal the servant. Well, wherever Jesus goes, the crowds follow Him. But the Centurion said, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed” (Verse 8). You see, the Centurion knew the power and authority of Jesus to heal.

Are you bold enough to believe that God is willing to heal you, because that is when the power of God is manifested in your life! You know God is able, but do you believe He is willing to come into your life knowing your past, your resume, and knowing who you are and what you’ve done? Do you believe Jesus is willing to stop what He is doing and come into your life, heal your oppression, your addictions, and your diseases and touch your heart? Believe in the name of Jesus and His power and authority to heal people today because the Bible tells us the answer from Jesus is always…Yes!

Be blessed,

Sebastian

Satan Is Revealed

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 07

The Bible is truth and knowing the truth sets us free. Jesus taught this to His disciples in John 8:31-34, but they didn’t understand. Their response was, “We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will be made free’?” In other words, they felt no need to be set free because they didn’t think they were in captivity. Being descendants of Abraham they were standing on their religion. Then Jesus answered them in Verses 34 and 35, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever.” Jesus is talking to them about the transitional thinking from the Old Testament to the New Testament.

In these verses, Jesus speaks to Old Testament believers, not Gentiles. He was speaking to some of the Jewish leaders and told them His words meant nothing to them. He was giving them the Word of God directly from God and they wouldn’t accept it. Jesus was actually saying, you are doing what you have seen your father, the devil, do but I am giving you the Words of God. But they insisted Abraham was their father. Jesus pointed out that if they were Abraham’s children they would do the works of Abraham. Jesus told them the truth from God and if you loved God you would love Me. You don’t understand Me because your father is the devil. Jesus tells them that Satan was a murderer and a liar from the beginning, but He is telling them the truth.

The Old Testament doesn’t give much detail about Satan’s influence in humanity. We do see Satan opposing God’s people and in the Book of Zechariah he was opposing at the altar. We also see Satan’s five “I Will’s” against God in Isaiah 14 and God’s counter response in Ezekiel 28. The early Jews didn’t have an understanding of the conflict with Satan in the Old Testament as we do today. We know the everyday fight we have with Satan and this is what Jesus revealed to us during His ministry. In 1 John 3:8 Jesus said, “He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” Well, what is the work of the devil that Jesus needs to destroy? The work of the devil against humanity that Jesus needs to destroy is humanities ignorance of Him. The wisdom we gain from the Bible will cause us to be free from the influence of Satan.

Satan brings sickness. He brings poverty. He brings pride. He brings division in the Church. He even brings wealth. Satan brings anything, even things that seem right to us, that would take us away from God and the things of God. Again, Satan will use anything. But what stops his influence on us? It is the truth found in God’s Word, understanding His Word by gaining wisdom and revelation from the Holy Spirit. Not only did Jesus give us the revelation of Satan, but He also gave us a revelation of how we are to destroy him in our lives. Remember, Satan is the god of this world and he wants to blind the hearts of God’s people in an attempt to keep us from bearing fruit. But the truth found in God’s Word set us free from Satan’s influence. Amen.

Be blessed,

Sebastian

God Is Our Father

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 06

It would be impossible for me to teach you everything Jesus taught during His ministry. The Bible tells us in John 21:25 there were so many teachings the world could not hold the volume of books needed to write them in. So I can only teach from what we do know about Jesus in the Bible. And, today we will study an area of His ministry I believe is very pertinent and that is the revelation of God as a Father. This was revealed to us in the New Testament because God was not a Father in the Old Testament. In other words, when the disciples heard Jesus praying in Matthew 6:9-13, “Our Father who art in heaven…” they wondered who He was praying to.

You must remember that in the Old Testament there was no way to change a human heart, God had to bring pressure or trouble into their lives to turn them back to Him. A quick look at the Book of Judges tells us there were forty years of good things, then forty years of living independently from God, and then God would rise up another judge in the land. This way of living for the Jews went back and forth for several years. So the disciples had the mindset of the Old Testament which may not have been of a tender loving God because God was not completely exposed to them. But in the New Testament Jesus told them He was the only way to the Father. Philip asked Jesus in John 14:8-10 who the Father is and Jesus told him that you know Me so you also know the Father. You see, revealing God to us as a loving Father was a key issue in the ministry of Jesus.

The disciples didn’t understand this because they could not go to the Father, there was no access to Him because only the High Priest could operate in that function on behalf of the people. The Bible tells us the presence of God was behind a twenty-five foot curtain in the Holy of Holies and man never interacted with God, let alone thought of Him as a Father. Nevertheless, Jesus tells us in the New Testament that God is a compassionate and loving Father. Then Jesus tells us that after His resurrection we will go to the Father and ask the Father for things in His name. The disciples wondered how could this possibly happen. But Jesus tells them in John 16:27, “…for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came for from God.”

Therefore, today we have complete access to God the Father and we go directly to Him in Jesus’ name with our prayers. This means we do not pray to any deceased saints for answers to our prayers because this is wrong. We do not go to anyone for answer to our prayers other than God Himself. As Christians we are to feel confident to go into the presence of the Father Himself. It is God alone who hears and answers our prayers in the mighty name of Jesus. Amen.

Be blessed,

Sebastian

He Became Strong in Spirit

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 05

There is not much known about the early life of Jesus, but today we are going to study what we do know about Him from the Word. He did have a grand entrance into the world even though He was born in humble circumstances. The angels were signing about Him and men on earth were worshiping and giving Him gifts. However, all we have is a small glimpse of Him as a twelve year old child in Scripture. And this is the story – it was during the Passover celebration when Mary and Joseph took the family to Jerusalem, but on their journey back home they discovered Jesus was not among His relatives in the caravan. They quickly left the group and went back to the City and found Him in the Temple listening to the elders and asking questions. We are told in Luke 2:47 that “…all who heard Him were astonished at His understanding and answers.” We also learn in Verse 40 “…the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.” At this point, Jesus knows who He is because He tells Mary and Joseph in Verse 49 “…Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” So at an early age Jesus knew His identity as the Son of God.

He was the oldest child in the family and learned His father’s trade as a carpenter. He would have attend the Synagogue regularly and engaged often with the religious leaders, but He had no public ministry at this time. There were no healings, no miracles, no signs or wonders yet, because He was simply a man going about the business of human life. It’s not until His baptism when the Holy Spirit descends upon Him that Jesus begins His ministry here on earth.

John the Baptist, a cousin of Jesus, preached to the crowds at the Jordan in Matthew 3:11-12 “…but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” This was John’s ministry to be a forerunner and prepare the way for the Lord. John was speaking of Jesus who will purge the threshing floor and cleanse the earth. Jesus will gather the wheat (those who are His) into His barn, but the chaff (the lost and unsaved) He will burn up in an unquenchable fire.

The baptism of Jesus is when we see the three entities of the Trinity. In Verses 16 and 17 it reads, “…the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’.” The Trinity is present – Jesus is baptized, God the Father speaks of His Son and the Holy Spirit descends upon Him. Jesus is now empowered by the Holy Spirit to begin His ministry and there is a visible power that is now in His life. And from this day forward everything changed in the life of Jesus and everything changed in our lives too! Amen.

Be blessed,

Sebastian

A Humble Existence

Understanding Jesus - Teaching Blog 04

We learn in Luke 2:1-15 that because of the origin of his family roots in the lineage of David, Joseph had to travel back to Bethlehem for a census. Mary is with him and she is ready to give birth but there is no room available for this couple. They are given a corner in a manger and this is where Jesus was born. Before we go any further, I want you to understand that all the male relatives of Joseph were also in the town of Bethlehem. Possibly his brothers, uncles, father and cousins, all had to travel for the census and I often wonder why their relatives didn’t invite this humble couple to stay with them?

Another point I want to make clear is Jesus was not born on December 25th He was probably born late in September or October during the Feast of Tabernacles. December 25th is a couple of days after the winter solstice and this date was selected by the Church. The date also accommodated the pagan festivities of the rebirth of the sun. Other traditions like the Christmas tree, giving of gifts and the Yule log can all be traced back to forms of worship that have crept into Church culture. Don’t get me wrong because I’m not saying we should change the date or the traditions, but the date should have lined up with the Feast of Tabernacles, just as Pentecost falls on the Feast of Pentecost and Passover lines up with His resurrection.

In Matthew 2:1-11 we read about the wise men and we imagine three kings because of traditional songs and cards and the giving of three gifts, but more than likely there were more than just three. The huge traveling caravan came from the East, probably in the direction of Iraq and the men were not kings. We learn in Verse 3, “When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all of Jerusalem with him.” The caravan could have been hundreds of people entering an already over-booked town, but Jesus was born in Bethlehem to fulfill prophecy.

For a moment, let’s step back and think about the weight of this situation for Mary and Joseph because the experience must have been overwhelming for this young couple. They heard of angles appearing to shepherds in the fields to announce the birth of their child. Wise men came to visit and poured out expensive gifts for their baby. Yet, their own relatives were not rejoicing or participating in the birth of their first child. Then in a dream, Joseph is told to flee to Egypt because Herod is going to kill all the male children under two years old. Now remember, Joseph’s relatives are in the city, therefore we can conclude that some of his young male cousins and nephews were executed.

Mary and Joseph’s moment of great joy, the birth of their first child, was a mixture of great emotional turmoil. Nevertheless, this is the beginning of our Savior’s life here on earth. Jesus was born in humble surroundings and He lived a humble life as a carpenter. And when His ministry began, He left His family and humbly went to the cross for our benefit. What a Savior we have in Christ Jesus!

Be blessed,

Sebastian

Why The Virgin Birth?

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 03

Before we start today’s teaching I want to explain that it’s my teaching style to seek out the truth and answer the important “Why?” questions. And you will discover the same teaching style in all my Bible studies and curriculums because I want you to know more than just what happened. I want you to know why and how things happened in the Bible. I want you to understand how these events affect your life and what makes you a significant part of God’s plan for humanity. Well, with this in mind, today we are going to study the conception and birth of Jesus Christ because we celebrate His birth at Christmas but the real miracle, the real life changer, was His conception. So let’s ask the question: “Why the virgin birth?” Once you can answer that question then you can understand why Jesus was the only way for us to receive salvation.

You see, the Holy Spirit came upon Mary and Jesus was born outside of Adam’s transgression. This had to happen, otherwise Jesus would be born in sin (as we are) and He would have been unrighteous to God (as we are). The conception of Jesus was not normal, so let’s think about something here – what makes an event a miracle? Well, a miracle is something that is done outside of the natural process of things. Therefore, the conception of Jesus was a miracle because it was done outside the normal process, but what about His birth? The birth of Jesus was normal because Mary was pregnant and brought forth a child like any other woman. She took care of herself and her unborn child by eating well and resting. Again, the real miracle was the conception and the key to this whole process of the virgin birth is that Jesus had to be born outside of Adam’s transgression. He had to born righteous to God which made Him a perfect and holy sacrifice.   

When you step back from this and think about it, Jesus is the only man in history to know His mother and father before He was born and to know how His life was going to be lived. He knew where He would be born and the timing of His birth, but He also knew the way in which He would die. I want you to understand the gravity of knowing all this because Jesus was a man. He was a human being and He experienced normal things. When He was hungry, He ate. When He was tired, He slept. When He was dirty, He washed. You see, Jesus came into the world at our creative level so we must understand that He also felt pain and humiliation on the cross. Jesus had to be a man in order to execute the plan of salvation for mankind. He left His royal position of deity and came down to earth to live among us and be part of us – all so that He could become a holy and righteous sacrifice for us!

Be blessed,

Sebastian

Jesus Had A Free Will

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 02

Today we are going to learn about covenant in Genesis 15 where God commands Abraham to prepare a covenant. What exactly is a covenant? It is a contract between two men or two tribes or two nations that form an unbreakable bond. There are several rituals involved in sealing the agreements of the covenant. One of the rituals is generally formed in blood which makes the participants blood brothers. They swear in blood to one another. This is something in modern times that is difficult to understand, but this is the way men protected each other from outsiders or enemies. This is the way men forged relationships and this is the way God forged a covenant upon Himself for us.

Once Abraham prepares the sacrifice for the covenant a thick darkness appears and he goes into a deep sleep. God speaks over Abraham the covenant terms and blessings. While he is asleep, two entities, God the Father and the Son, pass between the sacrificial pieces. As God and Jesus walk between the pieces, God swears agreement to His Son as to the Gospel plan and its benefits to humanity. Then God leaves and on the same day Jesus completes the covenant by forging a relationship with Abraham who is our representative. This is called the hypostatic union.

2 Corinthians 5:21 tells us, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” This verse speaks of the covenant term: in Him. Essentially our salvation is our belief in Him, in who Jesus is, what He did for us and what He represents for us to God the Father. All of this started thousands and thousands of years ago. As a matter of fact, it started thousands of years before Jesus went to the cross and died for us. This is is all possible because Jesus always existed.

You see, Jesus made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. (Philippians 2:7). Jesus humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death on the cross. I want you to understand that all the while Jesus was alive on earth as a man; He had a free will. Just like every other man, every created being, Jesus had a free will.

Here you have it – God made the plan for Jesus, God told Jesus the requirements of the plan, but Jesus had to accept the plan by His faith and in His free will. It was Jesus who died, of His own free will, for all of humanity. He humbled Himself and became a bondservant. Jesus executed the plan that God the Father designed. Think about the gravity and intensity of this plan because believe me; Jesus could have walked away from God’s plan at any time. Jesus did not have to go through dying on the cross for our salvation. Remember, Jesus did not need us – we need Jesus!

Be blessed,
Sebastian

 

Jesus Is Before All Things

Understanding Jesus – Teaching Blog 01

When you look at the Muslims you are looking at a religion where almost everyone within their religion would vote against their extremes. Christians are going to be tossed into the category of extremes and I believe that human secularism will take over and society will get rid of the extremes. I believe this way of thinking will intensify after this war because the world is going to come together and they are going to put a global contract in place that will set the stage for Antichrist. Again, this is what I believe, that this war happens first and once it does happen we will see things start to escalate very quickly. When will this war happen? It will be soon. I believe it will certainly happen in my lifetime because it is already taking shape, but it could take years before the war begins or it could take as little as two years. Also, I do not believe there is a long dispensation of time between the end of this war and before we go into the tribulation period because the stage will be set worldwide and Israel can go back to the sacrificial system.

This war is going to be the next major prophetic happening in the earth. Now, others believe differently, they feel this war happens during tribulation but remember that the first three and a half years of the tribulation are peaceful. But how will the seven years of spoil fit into seven years of tribulation because who will need to spoil once Jesus comes back? It simply doesn’t add up. I think it will take place a handful of years before we see Antichrist come onto the scene. In fact, he will probably be the one who actually brings world peace and the contract together.

We know that Antichrist will be one who signs the contract because he will be in leadership. In fact, Antichrist could be in office for ten years before things begin and we may even see him on the news but not know who he is, however, when we get to the seven years he will be there to sign the contract. This means he will already be in place because only leaders will sign this contract. I firmly believe that this is going to happen in our lifetime. I do believe this war is the first domino that falls and it brings about the seven year events.

Think about the excitement! Yes, it is a war but think about this day whether it is a year or ten years from now, you will remember back when you heard and studied this teaching because the Word of God tells us that others will see that this was taught before. With all that being said, I want you to stay encouraged because this is not a time to fear. Think of the excitement that comes from the fact that our God chose to tell us about this war and that we are going to be fighting with Israel! So be encouraged, be watchful, be alert, be prepared, and be ready, instead of being fearful in this time period because I want us to be able to work with God by faith. This means that we need to align our hearts with Him in order to work with Him and we are not to be overtaken by what is going on and the circumstances that are surrounding us! Amen.

Be blessed,

Sebastian

The First Domino Falls in Our Lifetime

Don't Get This Wrong! Teaching Blog #31

When you look at the Muslims you are looking at a religion where almost everyone within their religion would vote against their extremes. Christians are going to be tossed into the category of extremes and I believe that human secularism will take over and society will get rid of the extremes. I believe this way of thinking will intensify after this war because the world is going to come together and they are going to put a global contract in place that will set the stage for Antichrist. Again, this is what I believe, that this war happens first and once it does happen we will see things start to escalate very quickly. When will this war happen? It will be soon. I believe it will certainly happen in my lifetime because it is already taking shape, but it could take years before the war begins or it could take as little as two years. Also, I do not believe there is a long dispensation of time between the end of this war and before we go into the tribulation period because the stage will be set worldwide and Israel can go back to the sacrificial system.

This war is going to be the next major prophetic happening in the earth. Now, others believe differently, they feel this war happens during tribulation but remember that the first three and a half years of the tribulation are peaceful. But how will the seven years of spoil fit into seven years of tribulation because who will need to spoil once Jesus comes back? It simply doesn’t add up. I think it will take place a handful of years before we see Antichrist come onto the scene. In fact, he will probably be the one who actually brings world peace and the contract together.

We know that Antichrist will be one who signs the contract because he will be in leadership. In fact, Antichrist could be in office for ten years before things begin and we may even see him on the news but not know who he is, however, when we get to the seven years he will be there to sign the contract. This means he will already be in place because only leaders will sign this contract. I firmly believe that this is going to happen in our lifetime. I do believe this war is the first domino that falls and it brings about the seven year events.

Think about the excitement! Yes, it is a war but think about this day whether it is a year or ten years from now, you will remember back when you heard and studied this teaching because the Word of God tells us that others will see that this was taught before. With all that being said, I want you to stay encouraged because this is not a time to fear. Think of the excitement that comes from the fact that our God chose to tell us about this war and that we are going to be fighting with Israel! So be encouraged, be watchful, be alert, be prepared, and be ready, instead of being fearful in this time period because I want us to be able to work with God by faith. This means that we need to align our hearts with Him in order to work with Him and we are not to be overtaken by what is going on and the circumstances that are surrounding us! Amen.

Be blessed,

Sebastian