Bible Study Lessons

(1---25)

 Part 1The Incredible Good News of the Gospel 

Part 2

Experiencing the Power of the Gospel

 Part 3Biblical Doctrines in the Light of the Gospel 

Part 4―Last Day Events (Eschatology)

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Thank You. 

There will be two groups of christians in heaven!

 

Let us take a moment to distinguish between these two groups of believers.

 

I  know that this is very important, because not understanding this principle, is causing many Christians to give-up and leave the church.

 
Image #1

The thought that the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us, not because of any merit on our part, but as a free gift from God, is a precious thought.  The enemy of God and man is not willing that this truth should be clearly presented; for he knows, that if the people receive it fully, his power will be broken.  If he can control minds, so that doubt and unbelief....shall compose the experience of those who claim to be the children of God, he can overcome them....[1]

 
Image #2

What does satan do, to bring in doubt and unbelief?

 

The devil draws near to them, and says:  How come you are not living a victorious christian life?

 

How come you are still sinning?     Don’t you love Jesus?      [ John 14: 15 ]

 

Then, the devil says to them:  It is because, you are not really saved!    

 

And then his professional advice for the christian:  Why don’t you stop being a fake at church, and start living life in the real world?

 

And many well meaning christians, are reasoning this thing out, and believing in the lie!!

 

If that is a lie, then what is the truth?

Image #3

Our lives are hid with Christ in God,...You do not need to be discouraged....The devil will come to you and tell you that you are a sinner and cannot be saved.  But Christ says He came to save sinners, and there you can meet the devil every time.  Christ can pardon your sins....[2] 

 

Now, the bible does describe two groups of believers.  

 

The first one:       144,000      (Rev 14:1)

The second one:   babes in Christ    (I Cor 3:1)

 
Notice that it says:  “babies in Christ”  and not  “babies of the world
 
Image #4

The first point of comparison will be, how Christ dwells in the believer.

 

The Apostle Paul makes a very interesting statement, in his letter to the Ephesian church, while he was in prison!!

 

Eph 3  (v. 17) that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith....

 

Now, this is a puzzling statement, because:  Isn’t Christ already dwelling in the hearts of the believers?            

 

He is writing to the saints who are in Ephesus, and who are faithful to Christ.

 

Eph 1  (v. 1) ....to the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus.

 

 

When we look at this passage in the original Greek, you will discover that there are two words for “dwelling”—(1) permanently, and (2) temporarily.

 

[ 2730 ]  Katoikeo (kat-oy-keh’-o)  =  to house permanently, reside, dwell, inhabitant.[3]

 

[ 4636 ]  Skenos (skay’-nos)  =  a temporary residence, the human body as the abode of the spirit, tabernacle.[3]

 

 

Christ dwells in your heart temporarily when you first become a christian.

 

But what Christ really wants, is to dwell in your hearts permanently.

 

So here, we have the first difference, between a “baby in Christ” and one of the 144,000!!

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

 

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

 

 

Now, in order to grasp our comparison more completely, we need to add a third group.

 

The third one:     “the Lost”  (Gen 6:5)

                                                                  

Gen 6  (v. 5) ....the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

 

So, Christ does not dwell in the un-believer at all.  That abode is where satan dwells!!

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

   

                               

Image #5

So, Christ wants to dwell in your hearts permanently.

 

And since He dwells in our hearts by faith, then for that to happen, your faith must be unshakable

 

I  Jn 5  (v. 4) ....And this is the victory that has overcome the world, our faith.

 

Can God have a people in the last days with un-shakable faith?

 

Luke 18  (v. 8) ....when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?

 

So here is another difference, between a “baby in Christ” and one of the 144,000!!

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

 

Now, let’s look at the “orientation” of these two groups of christians.

 
Image #6

I  Cor 3  (v. 1) ....so I could not speak to you as to spiritual people, but as to carnal....

 

So, there are spiritual christians and there are carnal christians!

 

What does the word “carnal christian” mean?

 

These are people, who believe in Christ, but are habitually acting like the world.

 

Satan Triumphs at His Ruinous Work.--Satan exults to see the human family plunging themselves deeper, and deeper, into suffering and misery.  He knows that persons who have wrong habits, and unsound bodies, cannot serve God so earnestly, perseveringly, and purely as though sound....[4] 

 

....With the mind we serve the Lord. . . .Satan triumphs in the ruinous work he causes by leading the human family to indulge in habits which destroy themselves, and one another;  for by this means he is robbing God of the service due Him.[4]

 
 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

 

These carnal christians, cannot be used by God, to vindicate His character, against the charges of satan; But that does not mean, they are lost!

 

Acts 16  (v. 30) ....what must I do to be saved?  (v. 31) ....believe on the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved....

 

....Some parents have suffered their children to form characters, the marks of which may be seen all through life.  Upon their parents lies this sin.  They may profess to be christians, yet....their past habits will be seen in all their experience, and they will exhibit just the character their parents allowed them to form.[5] 

 

So, satan uses your family “up-bringing” against you!!               ....but that is not all.

 

On account of the standard of piety being so low among professed christians generally, it is much more laborious and trying for those who wish to follow Christ in sincerity....And while they profess to be living for Christ, they are living for the world.[5]

 
Image #7

So these christians, sincerely desire to serve God with their minds, but fail in performance, with their bodies and their actions.

 

Do we know someone else who had this same problem?

 

Rom 7  (v. 24) Oh wretched man that I am.... (v. 25) ....with my mind, I serve the Law of God, but with the flesh, the law of sin.

 

Do we think that the Apostle Paul will be in heaven?     Let’s read what he says about himself in verse 14.

 

Rom 7  (v. 14) For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin.

Image #8

 

Are we experiencing the same kind of trouble, that he was having?

 

(verse 15) For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I “will” to do, that I do not practice; I do what I hate.

 

Let’s read what he testifies in a letter, about himself to Timothy:

 

I  Tim 1  (v. 15) ....that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.

 

So, he states that he was the “chief sinner,” even though he was striving to do the Lord’s work.

 

Now, let’s take another look at these carnal christians in chpt. 3 of 1st Corinthians!

 

I  Cor 3  (v. 1) And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ. (v. 3) for you are still carnal.... (v. 16) Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

 

These are born again believers, they are not un-believers; because they have the Holy Spirit!!  

 

Rom 8  (v. 9) ....Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he (believer) is not His (Christ’s).

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

(4) Holy Spirit:

Yes

Yes

No

 

And you can tell by someone’s outward profession, see Acts 8:36-38.

 

Acts 8  (v. 36) ....And the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?” (v. 37) Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” (v. 38) ....And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him.

 

You become a “baby in Christ” at baptism, because you believe in the Son of God!

 

Rom 10  (v. 9) that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (v. 10) For with the heart one believes to righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made to salvation.

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

(4) Holy Spirit:

Yes

Yes

No

(5) Profession:

Believer

Believer

Un-believer

 

Now, Let’s look at another difference, between a spiritually mature christian and a “babe in Christ.”

 

I  Cor 3  (v. 2) I  have fed you with milk and not with meat; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able.

 

Image #9

These “babies in Christ” are fed with milk instead of the meat of the word!!

 

Heb 5  (v. 12) ....and you have come to need milk and not solid food. (v. 13) For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteous, for he is a babe.

 

The third chapter of 1st Corinthians contains instruction which all who claim to be following Jesus should study.  Contentions in the body of believers are not after the order of God.  They result from the manifestation of the attributes of the natural heart….[6]

 

....Paul here addressed a people whose advancement was not proportionate to their privileges and opportunities.  They ought to have been able to bear the hearing of the plain word of God, but they were in the position in which the disciples were, when Christ said to them, "I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now."[6]

 

So, you are not any different than the disciples, when Christ taught them!!

 

And lastly, an un-believer doesn’t feed on God’s word, but rather on worldly self interests.

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

(4) Holy Spirit:

Yes

Yes

No

(5) Profession:

Believer

Believer

Un-believer

(6) Feeds on:

Meat of word

Milk of word

Worldliness

 

Now let’s see the attitude of these “babes in Christ.”

 

I  Cor 3  (v. 3) for you are still carnal; For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?

 

These carnal christians make very poor witnesses for Christ!!  They don’t reflect the character of their savior, like the 144,000 will do.

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

(4) Holy Spirit:

Yes

Yes

No

(5) Profession:

Believer

Believer

Un-believer

(6) Feeds on:

Meat of word

Milk of word

Worldliness

(7)  Use for God:

Reflect Christ perfectly

Very poor witness

No usefulness

 

Rev 14  (v. 5) And in their mouth was found no guile, for they are without fault before the throne of God.

 

These last day believers, have reached maturity in Christ and are not controlled by the sinful flesh.

 

Eph 4  (v. 13) ....to the unity of the faith....to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.

 

These 144,000 are perfect, in the fullness of Christ!  While the christian is struggling to do what is right before God, the un-believers pay no attention to living rightly.

 

Gen 6  (v. 5) ....the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

(4) Holy Spirit:

Yes

Yes

No

(5) Profession:

Believer

Believer

Un-believer

(6) Feeds on:

Meat of word

Milk of word

Worldliness

(7)  Use for God:

Reflect Christ perfectly

Very poor witness

No usefulness

(8)  Presently:

Victory over Sin

Struggling with Sin

Indulging in Sin

         

The 144,000 will be able to stand in the time of trouble, because of having a perfect character.  They will be sealed.

 

Satan could find nothing in the Son of God that would enable him to gain the victory.  He had kept His Father’s commandments, and there was no sin in Him that satan could use to his advantage.  This is the condition in which those must be found who shall stand in the time of trouble.[7]

Image #10

 

John 14  (v. 30) ....for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me.

 

The 144,000 is a special group of believers who will be able to stand in the time of trouble and vindicate God’s character and His law.

 

Now notice the difference, for this other group of believers.

 

The law requires righteousness—a righteous life, a perfect character; and this man has not to give.  He cannot meet the claims of God’s holy law.  But Christ, coming to the earth as man, lived a holy life, and developed a perfect character.  These He offers as a free gift to all who will receive them....Thus the very righteousness of the law is fulfilled in the believer in Christ.  God can be....the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.[8]

 

 

Rom 3  (v. 26) to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

 

A christian must receive as a free gift, Christ’s righteous life and perfect character by faith.

 

The Comparison:

The  144,000

Baby in Christ

The  Lost

(1) Christ Dwells:

Permanently

Temporarily

the Devil dwells

(2) Faith level:

Un-shakable

Weak

Doubt

(3) Orientation:

Spiritual

Carnal

Carnal

(4) Holy Spirit:

Yes

Yes

No

(5) Profession:

Believer

Believer

Un-believer

(6) Feeds on:

Meat of word

Milk of word

Worldliness

(7)  Use for God:

Reflect Christ perfectly

Very poor witness

No usefulness

(8)  Presently:

Victory over Sin

Struggling with Sin

Indulging in Sin

(9)  The Test:

Will be able to stand

Receive it by Faith

Will give in to world

(10)  End result:

Translated Alive

Dies in Christ

Dies in their Sins

 

Now, what will happen to those believers who are not one of the 144,000?

 

References:

1. Gospel Workers (1915), p.161, par.1

2. E.G.W. 1888 Materials, p.80, par.2

3. Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, Hendrickson Publishers.

4. Temperance, p.14, par.3

5. Spiritual Gifts (vol.4), Testimony for the Church, p.145

6. The Review and Herald (11 Dec 1900), par.1

7. The Great Controversy, p.623, par.1

8. The Desire of Ages, p.762, par.2

Image #1: The bottom line, (2010). The three imputations. Retrieved from http://onceuponacross.blogspot.com/2010/04/exhilaration-of-double-imputation-part_12.html

Image #2: Partners in Hope, (2016). God says: Look at my Son. Retrieved from http://pihtoday.blogspot.com/2016/11/sunday-november-13-2016-sunday-psalm-in.html

Image #3: A.W. Weckeman, (1990). With Christ we are crucified. Retrieved from http://www.perfectingofthesaints.com/the-doctrine-of-co-crucifixion/

Image #4: St.Paul Evangelical church, (n.d.). My heart, Christ's home. Retrieved from http://www.stpauljamestown.org/sermon-series/my-heart-christ-s-home/

Image #5: MomsTheWord--living for him.blogspot.com. Faith must be based on an unshakable God. Retrieved from https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/kN12ihESsekV0UYA_jbe02xU06kBVdVz6D5fq0_ZEIEn8XLmOt9A33vjh13vZ_LViBEn9Q=s85

Image #6: Mission of the master ministries, (2013). Are you a carnal christian? Retrieved from http://wordworkswednesday.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-flesh-driven-life.html

Image #7: Wisdom for the heart, (2003). The war within. Retrieved from http://www.wisdomonline.org/media/messages/series_list/?filter=date&year=2003&month=9

Image #8: Whisper, (n.d.). Jesus came into the world to save sinners. Retrieved from http://whisper.sh/whisper/05164d86b2f2a07206087a4149766957e7cdc6/This-is-a-faithful-saying-and-worthy-of-all-acceptance-that-Christ-Jesus

Image #9: Scripture revealed, (2015). Milk and meat of the word. Retrieved from http://www.scripturerevealed.com/tag/word/

Image #10: Prayers and Promises, (2013). Can one man bear the sins of the whole world? Retrieved from https://dianarasmussen.com/2013/03/26/agony-in-the-garden/

 

 

 

 

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