New Testament Music

psalm 150

Praise the Lord! Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty firmament! Praise Him for His mighty acts; praise Him according to His excellent greatness! Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet; praise Him with the lute and harp! Praise Him with the timbrel and dance; praise Him with stringed instruments and flutes! Praise Him with loud cymbals; praise Him with clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord! (Psalm 150)

New Testament Music

The New Testament church is a unique organization of people gathered together in Christ to show forth the wonderful blessings of salvation through the love of God. There has never been a more perfect union of the mind of God and man than the church bought with the blood of Jesus Christ. Before the worlds were created, God had determined the existence of the church to be fulfilled with the sacrifice of His only begotten Son. Through the centuries the Lord showed His will to men like Abraham and Moses with promises of something greater coming in the last days. Jesus was born of a woman and lived under the burden of flesh in sinless perfection so that He could be offered as the lamb redeeming all men from the condemnation of sin. After His ascension, His apostles received power from on high on Pentecost and the New Testament church was begun. The message was different. Salvation would not come as it did in the days of Abraham. As the church began to grow it was clear the Law of Moses had been abolished. A new law was given to men whereby they would be saved. The gospel was first given to the Jews as a sign the trappings of old law was no longer in effect. Only through the gospel of Christ would men be saved.

Jesus referred to the Old Testament as the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms. The early disciples learned through the writings of men like Paul that Jew and Gentile were now under the covenant of grace. Circumcision, keeping of days, Sabbaths and temple worship was no longer required as the new law of Christ’s blood saved men. The worship had changed from a physical priesthood to a spiritual. Animal sacrifices were no longer required but the sacrifice of the heart. Under Christ, the law of salvation would come from the teachings of the New Covenant. One of the changes that was evident in the first century was the absence of instrumental music. The first Christians ushered into the church were Jews who knew everything there was to know about using trumpets, lutes, lyres, stringed instruments and loud cymbals. Psalm 150 declared the glory of God through the use of these instruments. Yet the early Christians never used instruments in their worship. The first occasion of an instrument used in the worship of the church would appear six hundred years after the first century church. How do we understand passages like Psalm 150 and the use of instruments today?

Authority must be established for everything that is done in worship to God. This has been the pattern since the first offerings are recorded by Cain and Abel. Before the Law of Moses authority was needed to worship the Lord. When God gave a law to the Jews (and to the Jews alone) He inscribed upon the Law of Moses the pattern of authority the nation of Israel must follow to be obedient. Christ came to establish a better covenant with better promises and effectively removed the means of salvation as found with Abraham and destroyed the Law of Moses and its authority. The Old Testament has been retained as a pattern of example to know God and His will but the authority of the Old Testament has been removed. Can we appeal to passages like Psalm 150 as a pattern of authority for instrumental music? If we are allowed to use Psalm 150 as authority then the conclusion would be the other 149 psalms would also be allowed to be used as authority. This would present a serious challenge to the Christian.

The book of Psalms is a book of books containing 150 different writings by many different men. Psalm 150 says to praise the Lord with many different kinds of instruments. Psalm 149 also declares praise to the Lord with the timbrel and harp. If we use Psalm 150 and Psalm 149 as authority for worship today we must also include everything contained in the two psalms as part of our worship. Psalm 149 says the saints are to be joyful in glory, sing aloud on their beds and let the high praises of God be in their mouth and a two-edged sword in their hand to execute vengeance on the nations and punishment on the peoples. The saints are to bind their kings with chains and nobles with fetters of iron executing on them the written judgment of God. All of this is the honor of being a saint. It is clear the teaching of Psalm 149 is not the teaching of Jesus Christ. If we are to take instruments of worship from Psalm 149 then we must take instruments of war as well.

All of the writers of the psalms were inspired by God. There is a lot of violence in the psalms. David spoke of his enemies falling by the sword, breaking their teeth, letting arrows fly, and washing feet in the blood of the wicked. Psalm 137 concludes with the hope that all the little ones of Babylon will be dashed against the rock. Are we to assume that since this language is contained in scripture that we are to commit such acts? The challenge of using Psalm 150 as authority for instrumental worship is that we are obligated to keep the whole law. Jesus explained how the old law was the writings of Moses, the prophets and the psalms and the early Christians learned the old law was abolished. Instruments of music have no authority in the church today because it was not in the first century. All of the passages that refer to the worship of the early church show that singing is the only means of worship. Paul was one of the finest students of the Law of Moses and the Psalms and he never suggested that instrumental music was accepted. He understood the only worship authorized was to sing. Praise the Lord but leave the instrument at home.

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Governing The Passion Of Self

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Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 1:2-11)

Governing The Passion Of Self

There is an animal that is more difficult to control than any of God’s creation. That creature lies within the soul of man and is the agent of goodness or wickedness. It is the part of man that declares his free moral agency allowing him to be accountable for his life. Established by the Lord by separating him from the beasts of the field, the struggle of self-will makes man a moral creature accountable for his words, thoughts and actions. The passion of the spirit of man can make him to be a creature of worship toward his creator or it can lead him down a path of self-destruction. Giving the ability to choose right and wrong the condition of the heart decides what the will of man will do. Self-control is learning how to guide the desires of the heart towards what the Lord wants man to do. More often than not man will choose to follow his own self-will because he believes he knows more than God and the appeal of the flesh is better served with no limits. Disciplining the passions of lusts is very difficult. As the fruits of the Spirit manifest themselves in the life of the child of God, the need to restrain the free spirit of man is more apparent. The forbidden fruit looks appealing and desiring to become wise man allows self-restraint to be forgotten. Self-control is learning how to control the creation of man’s inner desires for good.

The passions that drive a man were placed there by God. It is what separates us from the animal world. Right and wrong are determined by the manner we control the will of self. Placed before man is the choice of life or death and the control of the passions will either come from obedience to the word of God or abandoning the Lord for self-gratification. What makes self-control so difficult is the willingness to follow the path of righteousness but the temptation to enjoy the temporary fruits of sin overtakes the heart. David failed to control the feelings of self when he committed adultery with Bathsheba. He further lacked self-control when he devised a plan to cover up his sin and in the end lost control of every part of his life. A choice was made and he made the wrong choice. The heart of the problem was the lack of self-control. Without the governing influence of the word of God, there is no guidance and the devil wins.

Self-control is where character comes from. Peter shows that knowledge is a vital part of the growth of the Christian but without the discipline to implement that knowledge in the proper manner, sin will have its victory. Self-control is dependent upon knowledge and will need to be fortified with a spirit of perseverance. Self is hard to wrangle as it wiggles around seeking its own enjoyments. The wiles of the devil can only be defeated when the spirit is controlled with the strength of God’s word and the steel character of goodness protecting the way. Every sin can be defined by the lack of self-control. Growing in the grace and knowledge of Christ comes from the character building exercise of discipline. Learning to control the heart from anger, jealousy, passions, sinful lusts and a host of maladies that challenge the character of righteousness will change the person of God into a valiant soldier of Christ. Battle worn veterans in the war with Satan know that controlling self is where victory is found.

The graces defined by Peter present a complete picture of the Christian model of righteousness. No one character is more important than the other but without self-control there will be failure. Self-control is a key to fighting the passions of sin that destroy character, reputations, families and the work of the Lord. Faith must be fortified with the discipline of placing the will under the hand of God and forging a heart guided by the knowledge of truth established with a mind of perseverance. The great men and women of scripture have one thing in common: the presence of self-control. Every story of failure can be laid at the feet of lacking self-control. The word of God trains the mind to control the passions in the proper context. Finding the courage to stay the course and allow the Spirit of God to possess the soul will bring greater victory. Eternal life is rest from the weary battle of self-control. Learning to put self in its proper place will bring everlasting joy in this life and the life to come.

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Separate From The World

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You shall therefore keep all My statutes and all My judgments, and perform them, that the land where I am bringing you to dwell may not vomit you out. And you shall not walk in the statutes of the nation which I am casting out before you; for they commit all these things, and therefore I abhor them. But I have said to you, “You shall inherit their land, and I will give it to you to possess, a land flowing with milk and honey.” I am the Lord your God, who has separated you from the peoples. You shall therefore distinguish between clean animals and unclean, between unclean birds and clean, and you shall not make yourselves abominable by beast or by bird, or by any kind of living thing that creeps on the ground, which I have separated from you as unclean. And you shall be holy to Me, for I the Lord am holy, and have separated you from the peoples, that you should be Mine. (Leviticus 20:22-26)

Separate From The World

It is not easy to be different. The world is a tough place to separate oneself from because of the peer pressure, desires and temptations that allure the soul to follow after what everyone else is enjoying. As Israel prepared to enter Canaan, the Lord gave them strong admonitions about the world they would face. Throughout the giving of the Law, God impressed upon the minds of His people how important it was for them to be separate and not follow after the iniquity of the nations before them. When Abraham had come into the land, he had been promised Canaan when the iniquity of the people had come full and that time had come. One of the reasons the Lord brought His people to the land beyond the Jordan is to punish the nations because of their wholesale wickedness. The people engaged in gross immoral acts that were a stench before the nostrils of the Lord. They offered their children to idols as burnt offerings, followed after mediums and spiritualists, cursed father and mother, committed adultery, incest, bestiality, homosexuality and filled the land with violence. Canaan was not given to Israel because they were a righteous nation. God was bringing judgment against the land because they were so filled with wickedness that a cleansing needed to take place. At the same time the Lord warned His own people that they must remain separated from the influences of the immorality of the land lest they also were destroyed.

The Law of Moses was very clear about the penalties of being like the nations around them. Any child of God that followed after Molech (god of Ammonites) was to be put to death. If a child cursed father or mother they were put to death. The man and woman who committed adultery were put to death. Incest required death. Homosexuality was punished by death. Marriages of incest were burned with fire. The people of the land committed sexual acts with animals and the Lord demanded death on His people that practiced such things. God told the nation of Israel to consecrate themselves and be holy and to keep His statutes. He was their God and He would rule over them if they did not become like the nations around them. If they disobeyed the word of the Lord the land would “vomit them out.” They were not to walk in the ways of the nations that were before them. He abhorred what the nations were doing. Consecrating themselves from the peoples of the land would mean they distinguished between clean animals and unclean animals. They were to be holy to Him and to Him alone. Sadly their history would prove to be unholy.

As the centuries unfolded for the children of Israel they never quite rid the land of the immoralities warned against by God. In time the people did exactly what the Lord had commanded them not to do. They began to follow after the idol worship of the nations and served the Baal and other gods of men. Sexual immorality became rampant among the nation as fornication and adultery were common. Homosexuality was accepted along with bestiality. Parents were ridiculed as the home crumbled. Every man did what was right in his own eyes as personal rights became the rule of law. Nakedness was the accepted norm in the fashion world of ancient Israel. There was no distinction of those things that were clean and unclean. Warned repeatedly by God to change their ways, Israel fell into moral chaos and finally met their destruction at the hands of the Assyrians and Babylonians. The apple of God’s eye was destroyed because they had failed to separate themselves from the appealing temptations of the world.

The church faces a crisis as more and more of God’s people are no longer separating themselves from the world. It is hard to tell the difference. Children are being offered on the altars of selfishness, pride, and arrogance and are becoming self-centered lovers of themselves with no barriers to correct them. Spoiled with the desires of everything they want they have no interest in God. Sexual freedoms are no longer frowned upon as young people freely engage in premarital sex with parents giving their blessings. Children are born without the bonds of marriage because it has been accepted in the land that God is not real. Incest is accepted through the channels of pornography and adultery is a common practice in marriage. Homosexuality is a national pride and more challenges are found in the church of the Lord of those who have followed its seditious path of unrighteousness. Bestiality is over the horizon as acceptable. In all of these things the church is being plagued by those who refuse to separate their hearts from the desires of the world.

There was a time when women dressed modestly with shamefacedness. Now it is not unusual for the dress to be very short, the neck lines plunging with shoulders and backs exposed to glorify the body. Sensual dress is the market of the day. Women old and young will wear shorts to church services and in some cases very short shorts. Belly shirts, tight fitting pajama type clothing or expressive clothing of an immoral world fill the pews. Swim wear covers less than underwear. The Christian woman is clothing herself in the dress of the world or the lack thereof. And like the nation of Israel that was warned by God to separate themselves; consecrate themselves; be holy and make a distinction between what is clean and unclean; the church is being crushed by the influence of the nations that do not love God or keep His word. It is hard to be different and to set oneself apart from a world gone mad with lusts. Sadly, if separation does not take place in this life there will be a separation in the next life that is eternal. God’s people have always battled with the influence of the world but the challenge remains the same. There must be separation. Consecration requires sanctification and sanctification demands a choice. We must be holy to God because He is holy and He separated us by the blood of Christ that we should be His and His alone.

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Cursing Mother And Father Brings Death

children swearing

For everyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death. He has cursed his father or his mother. His blood shall be upon him. (Leviticus 20:9)

Cursing Father And Mother Brings Death

The highest of God’s creation was the formation of man and woman and the establishment of the home. From this place the world would be filled as the man and woman multiplied and families spread throughout the land. Adam and Eve had two sons named Cain and Abel. Sadly, the tragedy of sin quickly filled the hearts of their home when Cain killed his brother Abel. Many children would be born to Adam and Eve but none bore the stain of heartbreak more than the banishment of Cain. Noah would raise three sons in a world so wicked it would be destroyed by the Lord. He and his wife worked hard to instill in their three sons a respect for God and love for truth. The examples of Ham, Shem and Japheth show their honor given to the parents in believing in the flood and following through with the warnings of destruction. It is incredible that not only was the family of Noah saved but also his three daughters-in-law. The wives of Ham, Shem and Japheth also honored their father-in-law by believing in the flood. When the Law was given to the people of Israel, the Lord had much to say about respect for parents. The sanctity of the home was very precious to God. Capital punishment was meted out to those who committed murder, adultery, idolatry, blaspheming the name of the Lord and failing to keep the Sabbath holy. Included in the law of capital punishment was death to anyone who cursed their parent.

It is clear God expects great respect to be given parents. One could argue the penalty of death to those who commit murder but in the eyes of the Lord there is no difference in a murderer than one who would curse their father and mother. Death is the sentence of a man who curses his father or mother showing the disdain of the Creator to any that would trample the sacredness of the home. The Lord will not accept those who would insult or trample upon the paternal dignity and authority of the home. Rebellious children were put to death, not tolerated. The message is not so much the execution of the child but the view of God toward the home. He demands respect and honor be given to parents who have borne the children into the world. While the Law of Moses has been abolished the feeling of God’s wrath upon those who would trifle His design of the home remains the same. Under the Law of Moses judgment came in this life. At the judgment bar of God He will bring about swift punishment upon those who do not honor the home.

Cursing father and mother is the highest level of disrespect. Fathers are commanded to bring their children up in the training of the Lord and when a child curses their father they curse God. In the creation man and woman were formed as the agents of procreation with the command of the Lord to teach respect and honor to the children so they would honor the parent. Ultimately this would reflect upon the child’s view of God. If a child does not honor their father and mother they will not honor God as Father. The penal sanctions of the law criminalized the actions of the child to the parent. There is wisdom in the will of God to enforce such laws as the foundation of any society. Jesus affirmed this view in His teaching showing God’s view of cursing father and mother is sinful.

The respect of children for parents must begin in the home. It must be seen the purpose of teaching children to honor father and mother forms the basis of a child’s view of God. If the child does not learn to give honor to the parent they will not obey the Lord. A child left to themselves will grow up without God. Parents who allow their children to talk back to them and disrespect them teach them to dishonor the word of God. Spoiled and unruly children grow up with the attitude the world owes them everything. When this reflects upon their understanding of the Heavenly Father there will be no hope for their soul. Some children curse their father and mother because their parents have allowed that behavior to form the child’s heart. The home will be filled with shame. Children who learn to honor their parents will know how to honor God. Too many children grow up cursing God because they have cursed their parents. Godly homes must teach children how important it is to love and respect God and His word. Saving a child’s heart in the home will save their soul in eternity. Children must obey their parents in the Lord because that is the right thing to do.

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The Infirmed Man

infirmed woman

Now He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, “There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.” The Lord then answered him and said, “Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?” And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him. (Luke 13:10-17)

The Infirmed Man

Jesus was the great miracle worker showing the power of God through healing, comforting, casting out demons and raising the dead. No time in the history of man has there been such an incredible demonstration of immediate reversal of physical calamity. There was no disease Jesus could not conquer. His cures were complete. The visual evidence of the miracle was purposed for the hearts of men to see Him as the Son of God. Thousands were healed. At times single individuals received the welcomed touch of the great Physician. Some the Lord warned not to tell while others He healed in the presence of hard hearted Jews intent on destroying Him. Jesus could heal the body but many He could never change their hearts to see Him for who He was.

On a certain Sabbath Jesus was teaching in the synagogue when He saw a pitiful sight of a woman so infirmed she could not stand straight. He knew she had suffered in this manner for eighteen years. What a miserable existence to be unable to stand straight or sit with any comfort. Sleeping may have been the only respite from her misery as she endured many years of incredible pain and discomfort. What of her family? Did she have a husband who cared for her or children that concerned themselves with her welfare? We are not told but it was clear Jesus saw a need and His heart filled with compassion at the sight of this poor woman. Calling her over to Him, He declared her loose from the infirmity, laid His hands on her and the warm feeling of healing swept over her body. The pain was gone and the crippling malady that plagued her for eighteen years was immediately removed. It must have startling to her mind to be in such agony one moment and feeling the gentle touch of Jesus as her body became whole. She glorified God for many reasons. Her infirmity was gone and she knew the only way that was possible was by the power of a loving God. How great was her thanksgiving and how joyful she could now live a full life. As her friends and family saw her they were astonished that she stood straight and tall. This woman was no longer infirmed.

Watching the events in the synagogue was a man in a place of authority among the Jewish people. As ruler of the synagogue he possessed a position of great authority and prestige. The people would come to him for spiritual advice and it was under his leadership the synagogue was conducted according to the traditions of the fathers. When he saw what Jesus did he became indignant. It is possible he knew the woman infirmed for eighteen years and may not have given much notice to her wretched state. There was nothing he could do and she was probably not important to him. Along with the crowd gathered that Sabbath he witnessed the woman healed immediately by the power of Jesus. He saw her glorify God and praise Him for the wonderful blessing of healing. The heart of the ruler great dark as he boldly declared to the crowd that healing should not be done on the Sabbath day. If anyone wanted to be healed let them come the other six days but he reminded them the Sabbath was not a day for healing.

Jesus was incredulous. Here was a man serving as ruler of the people and witnessing an amazing miracle; and he accuses Jesus of profaning the Sabbath. The Lord shames the ruler and those who sided with him that if they had an ox or donkey that needed a drink of water that they would – on the Sabbath – take their animal to a trough of water. If they had such compassion for an animal, why would they not have compassion on a child of Abraham to be loosed from her infirmity? One of the most remarkable things that happened with the miracles of Jesus is no one denied the miracle. The ruler did not say the miracle did not happen. He thought (in his hypocritical mind) that Jesus should restrict His healing to six days. In the story of the woman infirmed for eighteen years we find the real story is the man who is infirmed in his mind to deny the power of Jesus as the Son of God. She was healed but the ruler was infirmed.

The Bible has stood for centuries under the barrage of criticism and rejected by the wisdom of man. But it is still here and continues to change lives because of its power to heal the broken and contrite heart. Many look at the word of God with derision and scorn but they cannot deny its reality. In the face of a world that denies the power of the word it remains the only hope for removing the infirmity of sin. Those who are blessed by its message find relief. For the masses that reject the word – infirmity remains.

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What Does God Look Like?

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They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. (Revelation 22:4)

What Does God Look Like?

As the teacher walked around the classroom, she noticed a little girl intently drawing on a piece of paper. She asked what she was doing and the little girl said, “I am drawing a picture of God.” “Well nobody knows what God looks like,” the teacher replied. With the innocent face of youth the little girl looked her teacher in the eyes and said, “They will when I get finished.” Indeed no man knows what God looks like. Moses saw the passing glory of the Lord while at Mount Sinai but was told that no one could see the face of the Lord and live. Jesus is the only man who could claim to know what the Father looks like because He was God. Images of God range from an old, white bearded man sitting on a glorious throne to a wrathful creature passing out judgment to a cruel world. Idol worship is based on man’s desire to create an image of God as he sees God to be. A totem is the creation of man to make God like himself. In the end all man has done is form an image of what he thinks God should look like according to his fleshly desires. God is not a relative figure that can be manipulated at the whim of man.

It is clear from scripture that no one knows what God looks like. This does not remove the truth that while in the flesh we cannot know what God looks like the promise is given that one day we will see Him face to face. It is then we will know exactly what He looks like and what a day that will be. According to Jesus, most men will not want to see His Father face to face because there will be no hope for them. Passing into eternal darkness the final image imprinted on their minds will be the radiant beauty of the God they chose to disobey and disbelieve in. For the saints who have died in Christ it will be a time of untold joy and reward. They will look deep into the face of God and feel an immense eternal happiness of His love. His eyes will sparkle with the grace of His mercy and no one will be able to take their gaze away from the radiant light of His presence.

There are many things to look forward to in death but the greatest must be the knowledge that the saved will see God face to face. Pain has gone away, sorrow has been removed and the gentle hand of the Father will wipe away all tears. The music of the eternal ages will echo throughout the temple of God as angels and saints sing, “Holy, Holy, Holy.” All the trappings of mortality are given up for the spiritual plateaus of eternal joy as the face of God is imprinted on the minds of the saved. His name is sealed upon their foreheads. The children of the Father are home. There is no need for sun because He is the light. Joining the Heavenly realm the Son of God is seen face to face as well as the Holy Spirit. In this life we read of Jesus the Christ but we have never beheld His visage. The Holy Spirit has been a spiritual giant throughout the pages of God’s word but now we speak to him face to face. All of the saints of the ages will be gathered around the Father as we look into the face of God with Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Samson, Dorcas, the early apostles and Paul. We will gaze upon the face of God and see Him as He is. What a day that will be when we all will see His face.

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The Church In The Old Testament

old testament cross

So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?” Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.” But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel. (Acts 2:12-16)

The Church In The Old Testament

Jesus is the Head of the church. He purchased the redeemed by His blood and became the Savior to all those who believe in Him. The New Testament is the testimony of God’s divine plan to establish His kingdom among men so they may serve Him and open the doors of salvation to the lost. Luke records the events of the Day of Pentecost when the twelve apostles ushered in the beginning of the church through the power of the Holy Spirit. Three thousand people obeyed the good news of Christ and the Lord added to the church those who were saved. The ministries of Peter and Paul fill the book of Acts as the infant church grew spreading its borders to farthest reaches of the world. Every generation is blessed by the existence of the church of Christ in every corner of the world as God’s love shines in the hearts of His people.

What is seldom recognized among many in the religious world is the church was in the eternal mind of God. Paul will prove them in his writings but looking at the events of Pentecost and the reaction of the people establishes the foundation of the church came long before Peter’s stirring message. Jesus had told the apostles to remain in Jerusalem and they would be endued from on high with the Holy Spirit. Ten days after the Lord ascended to the Father the Holy Spirit came with great power to the city of Jerusalem and the twelve apostles. A sound came from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind. Tongues as of fire appeared upon each of the apostles and being filled with the Holy Spirit they began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterances. These events astonished the people and they were unsure what it meant. Part of the confusion was seeing common Galileans speaking in all the different languages of the world. Some were perplexed while still others disbelieved mocking what they saw. There were those who thought the apostles were acting like drunken men.

In a sweeping statement of inspiration, Peter begins to explain the events as a fulfillment of something Joel wrote eight hundred years before. This is vital for the Jews of that day to see what was coming to pass was clearly stated in the ancient holy scrip. Peter will quote from Joel and the prophet David to prove that Jesus was the Christ the Son of God. When he explains that Joel prophesied of this day it shows the church was in the mind of God long before the period of the New Testament. The church of Christ was not an afterthought because the Jews killed Jesus. God had planned for the church to be established on this day before the world was formed. Among the evidences of testimony was the writing of Joel. The key word in the answer of Peter is when he said “THIS” is what was spoken by the prophet Joel. There is no doubt the establishment of the church is referenced by Joel as Peter explains. The glory of the church is finally revealed on the Day of Pentecost and salvation has come to Jew and Gentile alike through the blood of Jesus Christ. What we are part of today is what Joel spoke about in his day because the church of Christ is the glory of His Son. Thank you God for you great hope in the body of Christ.

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