How do we get into Christ? I Corinthians 12:13, "By one Spirit we are all baptized into one Body, and become fellow citizens of the Kingdom of God." We profess to be pilgrims and strangers on this earth, not seeking worldly things, but looking for the Coming of the blessed King to rule His domain from sea to boundless sea.
That's what Jesus had in His mind when He was here on earth, the infallibility of God's eternal Word. For in Him dwelt the Fullness of the Godhead Body. The entire Godhead was in Him. He was Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, manifest in human form; the theophany of God, the image in which He made man, then placed him in the earth. God isn't without a body. God's got a body, and it looks like a man. Moses saw it; others saw it, and it looks like a man.
Our body is just a likeness of what that is. Everything here, the sweetness, the beauty of the earth, is no more than an indication of something far better acropss the other side. Everything in earth is just a pattern of that which is in heaven. Everything that's good, everything righteous, everything that's beautiful, trees, birds, everything is just a pattern of what's in store.
Our own life is just a pattern. It's just a shadow, and not the real thing. It's the negative side. It takes death to develop the picture, to put us back in the theophany of God's foreknowledge. In the resurrection, we'll be in His likeness: glorified flesh. We'll be like Him.
Jesus was invested with all the powers of God, but when He met Satan, He used none of His powers. He only referred to the Word. He said, "It's written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.'"
How can you stay home and say you'll be as good a Christian as you would were you attending church? You can't do it. Read the Word. The Holy Spirit feeds on the Word. The Bible is God's spiritual diet for His church. And the Holy Spirit is the One Who brings It to you and places It in the heart; and with thanksgiving you water It. And every Divine promise will produce just exactly what God said it would do. It's got to. It's His Word, and It's Life.
Notice in the last hour or two of Jesus life, many prophecies were fulfilled. Someone said, "Brother Anthony, this has to happen, and that has to happen."
I said, "It could happen this Easter." It will happen one Easter.
If you'll read the 22nd Psalm and then watch His dying hour at the cross, I just forget now how many outstanding prophecies was fulfilled in the last two or three hours of His life. Certainly, "They pierced My feet and My hands. My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" and so forth, as David cried it.
Another thing I want you to notice in God's infallible Word. The Bible said, "He keeps all His bones; not one of them is broken." The paschal lamb was a type. It had to be without blemish; with no broken bones. And after Jesus died, they went to break His legs. And at the crucial moment they declared Him already dead. God's Word said, "There'll not be one broken bone in His body."
God's Word is eternal. If His Word is that perfect, those who are in Christ are just as sure to raise as there is a resurrection. God's as obligated to His Word to heal you, as He is to save you. His Word that promised it, and we have no right to take away from It. Just say, "It's the Truth". No matter what happens, believe It anyhow. God gave Palestine to Israel, but they had to fight for every inch of ground they got. The promise is yours, but you have to fight for every inch you claim; the Devil will see to that.
Notice, if that hammer had struck the legs of our Lord Jesus, God would've been found false. They took a spear and pierced His side, and Blood and water came out, to fulfill what the Bible said, "They pierced My hands and My side." The Word was fulfilled.
Hanging there, bleeding and dying, He bowed His head. The sun was so ashamed to look upon mortal creatures made in God's image; and to see such a price paid to redeem us, it refused to look down on the earth in that hour. The moon was embarrassed and withdrew from its place. And the stars turned their backs to the earth. What a horrible thing sin must be.
Those mocking priests, spat in His face. A man hit Him on the head and said, "If you're a prophet, tell us who hit you." One of them pulled the beard from His face, and struck His face, wanting Him to defend Himself.
He said, "If My Kingdom was of this world, I'd straightway call My Father, He'd send Me twelve legions of Angels."
But how could He do it? It was His Own children crying out for His Blood. Could you imagine a daddy, a father, with his own children in darkness crying out for their own father's blood? That's the reason He could do nothing else but die. If He didn't, it was doom for His children, it was doom for the creatures. But He had to die to save His people.
When He bowed His head, darkness fell over the face of the earth from the sixth to the ninth hour. Earth shook, and the rocks rent. The temple veil tore from top to the bottom and the sacrifice blocks overturned. The Son of the living God died. He was so dead the sun recognized it. He was so dead that the moon recognized it. He was so dead, the stars recognized it. He was so dead till the earth recognized it. The elements and atmosphere recognized it. Everything had to know He was the Son of God. For God's Word could not fail. He was promised from the garden of Eden, the Seed that would bruise the serpent's head.
Now what happened to Him? Where did He go when He left the cross? He was laid in Joseph of Arimathaea's tomb?
He was so poor He had no place to lay His head. He was born by the roadside and lain in a manger, with a black name behind Him, as an illegitimate child. He was laughed at, made fun of, scoffed at on earth. He was rejected. He died by capital punishment between two thieves. He was buried in another man's grave. The very God of heaven coming to earth. Who do we think we are, that should avoid a little suffering? Think what He did for us; study it.
The Roman soldier said, "Truly, He was the Son of God." The sinner had to recognize it. Judas said, "I have betrayed innocent Blood." The whole earth recognized it.
He had to die that way because God's Bible said that He'd die that way. And He trusted God's Word. That's why He could say in life, "Destroy this temple, and I'll raise it up in three days." David, the man of God, the prophet anointed with the Word said, "I'll not suffer My holy One to see corruption, neither will I leave His soul in hell."
Jesus said, "You destroy this body, and I'll raise it up in three days." He knew God's Word could not fail.
If He could rest upon that, believing God's Word could not fail, how much more can we rest secure that we've been born again by the Holy Ghost, and It's a witness in our heart right now that we know our Redeemer lives and will come again someday. Rest assure that those that are in Christ will God bring with Him.
He knew not one cell of His body would corrupt. Corruption sets in in Seventy-two hours so he knew that He must resurrect under three days, because He trusted God's Word. That's why He didn't stay the full three days. He died on Friday afternoon and rose on Sunday morning. It was within three days.
Where did He go in that time? The Bible said, "He went and preached to the souls that were in prison, who repented not in the long-suffering of the days of Noah." His soul, His Spirit, or the theophany of His Own being, went down. His body lay in the tomb.
Let's see where He went. Just below the region of mortal beings is the realm of demon power; just above that lay the souls of the unjust; below it lays the very domain of Satan: hell. Just above us lays the Holy Spirit; and under the Altar are the souls of just men; next is God Himself. One going downward, one going upward; the two spirits are here on earth, influencing people.
When Jesus died, He went down there. I can see Him on that Friday, after His death, knocking on the door to the regions of the lost. The door opens. There were women; there were men; there were young and there were old; all together in that hideous place called the prison of the lost souls.
In that mournful place, everything had to witness that He was the Son of God, because they'd been preached to in the long-suffering days of Noah. He knocks at the door, "I'm He of Whom Enoch spoke. I'm the Seed of the woman, Who was to bruise the serpent's head. Every Word of God has been fulfilled; I've just died at Calvary, and I've purchased My Church". Now they were without mercy, and without hope, because they'd transgressed. And the door was shut.
On down into the regions of demons, on down to the very gates of hell, He knocks at the door.
Now Jesus' body is in the tomb, awaiting the resurrection. In His theophany, or angel, (like Casper the friendly ghost), He visited the regions of the departed souls of the just and the unjust. You'll go to one or the other place, one of these days.
And He knocks at the door of hell. And when He did, the Devil came out. I can hear him say, "So finally you arrived. I thought I had you when I killed Abel."
Since that Seed was promised in the garden of Eden, the Devil has constantly tried to destroy that Seed. The death of Abel and the coming of Seth was a type of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. He tried to destroy It, but that Seed must continue.
"I thought I had You when I destroyed Abel. I thought I had You when I destroyed the prophets. I was positive I had You when I beheaded John. But You've arrived. I've got You now."
I can hear Jesus say, "Satan, come here! I'm the Boss now." He reaches over, grabs that key of death and hell off his side, and hangs them on His Own side. "I want to serve notice on you. You've been a bluff long enough. I'm the virgin-born Son of the living God. My Blood is still wet on the cross, and the full debt is paid. You have no rights, you're stripped. Give me those keys." That's right. Jesus turns around, gives Satan a good healthy kick, and slams the door. "Stay in there. I'm Boss from now on."
Now, Jesus didn't have the keys to the Kingdom, because He gave them to Peter; and Peter gave them to every Christian. What are those keys? They're faith keys. A clear undersytanding of the Word for your day which is the baptism of the Holy Ghost or new birth that puts us into the Kingdom of heaven. But Jesus had the keys to death and hell. He took them, and after His resurrection He said, "I've got the keys of death and hell." Peter had the keys of the Kingdom. Satan had the keys of death and hell; but now Jesus has got them, and He's the Boss.
Time's passing quickly, it's almost Sunday, and there's another group. Where's Job? Where's Abraham? Where are those who trusted God's Word? Has He forgotten them? Did death annihilate them? Was that all of it? Never: God has to keep His Word.
He starts up into Paradise, I can see Him. And I see Abraham and Sarah walking around. Let's knock. After while Abraham opens the door, "Honey, come here. Look, that's the One Who stood with me under the oak that day." He's Abraham's God.
I see Daniel look over his shoulder and say, "That's the Rock that was hewn out of the mountain, just as sure as I am standing here."
I see Job raise up, "That's my Redeemer. I said I know He lives, and that someday He'd stand upon the earth. My body may be no more than a spoonful of ashes, but in fifteen minutes from now I'll be in it again. That's Him."
Ezekiel looks over and says, "I saw that same Person as a Wheel in the middle of the Wheel, turning way up in the middle of the air."
Then up comes Enoch. He said, "I saw Him coming with ten thousands of His saints to execute judgment."
There were the Old Testament saints waiting. Under the atonement of animal blood they could not go in the Presence of the God of heaven, because goat and sheep blood could not take away sin.
Now Jesus says, "My brethren, I am the One you think I am. I am the Seed of the woman. I am the Son of David. I am the Son of God. I am the virgin-born One. My Blood has atoned for you. You waited under the blood of sheep and goats. Now My Blood atones, and you're free. Let's go up; it's almost Easter."
Just think, that was about nineteen hundred and seventy years ago today.
I can hear Abraham say, "Lord, when we get up in our bodies again, Sarah and I just loved Palestine so much, do You mind if we make a little whistle stop, on Your road?"
I can hear Jesus say, "Why, no, certainly not. I'm going to stay with My disciples for about forty days. Look around and see how things are."
That glorious Easter morning when He rose from the dead, the Bible said that "Many of the saints that slept in the dust of the earth, rose and came out of the graves." Who was it? Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Job, those who by spiritual revelation knew their Redeemer would stand on the earth someday. They're the firstfruits of those that slept.
They walked into the city. I can see Sarah and Abraham, young, and handsome and full of life, never to be old again, never to be sick any more, never to hunger, walking around in glorified bodies.
Caiaphas standing there said, "You know what? Something happened the other day, just look at this mess this temple's in. We've got have someone sew up that curtain. Look at those sacrifice blocks overturned. What happened? Was that guy an astrologer? Was He a witch? Say Josephus, come here, who are that young couple standing there?"
Abraham said, "Sarah, we've been recognized. We'd better get out."
Matthew said, "They appeared to many." And, my Brother and Sister, this Easter or the next, the New Testament saints will resurrect and they will appear to the living saints, or New Jerusalem, after the manifestation of the Sons of God, to give them faith for rapturing grace. Make sure you have your reservations: the baptism of the Holy Ghost.
That wasn't all of it. One day after Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all of them had visited the homeland, Jesus ascended. The disciples saw only Jesus, but the Old Testament saints went with Him, for the Bible said, that He led captivity captive and gave Gifts unto men. I can see Him as He goes up, and joins with His church.
Two Angels out of the band that was playing the music, came back and said, "You men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up? This same Jesus, that was taken up, is coming again." And they hurried back to join the procession.
Through the skies went Jesus and the Old Testament saints. They passed the moon; they passed the sun; they passed the stars. And when they got in sight of that great, beautiful white heavens, the Old Testament saints screamed out, "Lift up, ye everlasting gates, and be ye lifted up. Lift up, ye everlasting gates, and be ye lifted up. And let the King of Glory come in."
All the Angels gathered at the top of the banisters of heaven, and said, "Who is this King of Glory?"
The Old Testament saints replied, "The Lord of hosts, mighty in battle. He was a Conqueror."
The Angel pressed a big button, and the pearly gates swung open; down through the City of Jerusalem came the mighty Conqueror, bringing the Old Testament saints. Angelic bands were playing and the Angels were shouting. He was the mighty Conqueror. He had the keys of death and hell hanging on His side, going past the palaces of Glory till He got to the throne.
"Father, here they are. They believed by faith in Your Word, that I'd come someday. I've conquered both death and hell." He had the scars in His hand to show that He'd been in the battle. Glory to God! He is that mighty Conqueror. "Here they are, Father; Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob."
I can hear Him say, "Son, climb up here and sit by My side, until I make every enemy Your footstool." Brother, someday He'll come again, and what a day it will be.
He wasn't idle when He was in the tomb. He wasn't just laying dead. He was still conquering, He went down and took the keys away from Satan, He's got the keys of both death and hell tonight. He said, "Because I live, you can live, also." They belong to us, the end-time Bride Who will not see death. Like Elisha, we receive a double portion - the new birth, and the body change.
I wonder my brother, sister, have you thought that over sincerely? Do you realize that you only live because He lives. Have you appreciated it enough to offer up yourself and say, "God, here I am, a sinner, be merciful to me?" Have you ever accepted that all-sufficient Sacrifice? Have you ever told Him you loved Him? Does it hurt your feelings when you do wrong? If you've never come to that experience. If you've never received Christ as your personal Saviour, I wonder if you'd so it now?
Remember, sinner or saint, you're not out of existence when we bury you. Your soul is somewhere. Jesus visited both places according to the Scriptures. Where would He find you if you'd go tonight? Would you have the door of mercy shut in your face, because you've rejected? Remember, He's not only a Saviour, He's a Judge. You're the judge now, how do you judge Him? Let Him be your Saviour now.
Sometime ago a little boy was sitting in a wagon. A gun fired down the street, and the horses run away and was going over a cliff. A young cowboy ran and stopped the horses just before the wagon went over the cliff, because it had a baby in it. He saved the little one's life.
Many years after that, the same boy had committed a crime, he took the wrong road. He was drinking and gambling. He shot a man and was found guilty. And the judge raised up and said, "I sentence you to hang by your neck until dead."
That young man said, "Judge!" And he jumped over the rail and fell at the judge's feet, for mercy. He said, "Judge, look at my face. Don't you know me?"
He said, "No, son, I don't."
He said, "You remember a certain little boy's life that you saved many years ago from a runaway horse?"
He said, "Yes, I remember it."
He said, "I am that boy." He said, "Judge, you saved me then. Save me now."
The judge looked down at him and said, "Son, that day I was your Saviour. Today I'm your judge."
Today He's your Saviour. Sinner, tomorrow He may be your Judge. Let's think it over now. radio102.htm
.../Back to Index