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Thus saith the Lord, yea even the living God, the head of the church, your king, and your savior, I am with thee, saith the Lord, from before the foundations of the earth, indeed until the culmination of the life of the ages, yea, even until the age of the ages, that one which will endure throughout the balance of all times. Yea, world without end, I am he the ruleth in your mind, in your soul, and in your body, saith the Lord God. Look not to the sky saying, Where is the promise of His coming, and look not the sky saying, Truly His word has failed, but know in thy heart, saith the Lord, that I am He who liveth even though He was once dead, and that because I live, that you too shall live also.
Be not swayed by the circumstances, saith God, and be not disappointed as I withdraw the imputed anointing. For truly, childish things must come to an end. For when you were children, I accepted you acting as children, saith God, but as I call you into adulthood, one must act like an adult. Receive the knowledge, saith God, know and understand these things that I am doing, there shall be no more childishness in my church, saith God, but there shall be maturity, and there shall be sobriety, and with maturity, and with sobriety shall come righteousness, saith the Lord. There is indeed no righteousness with childhood, children are constantly and continuously subjected to the chastening and the paddling of their parents, saith God.
But I have ordained that thou wouldst grow up into full stature, saith the Lord, that thou wouldst become equal with me as I am indeed equal with my Father, that there should be no more need for chastening, saith the Lord, that my righteousness and my wisdom and my heart should rule and reign in your mind, saith the Lord, so that we can fellowship on a equal basis.
Fear not, and endure with cheerful suffering the pain that thou art experiencing on the cross, knowing this and hiding this word in thy heart that I have never left you, that I shall never leave you, that I shall never forsake you. For indeed, you are my flesh and it is impossible for me to forsake you, for you a made of the substance which I am. We are one, saith the Lord, there has indeed been a separation for a short season, saith God, and it has been painful, saith the Lord, but we will come together, and we shall be joined and the creation of God shall appear, saith the Lord. Your life shall be hid in me, and when I appear, you too shall appear, and you shall partake of all of the glory that the Father has given to me.
I have been listening to the prior tapes and I have a couple of comments to make on things that I said on prior tapes, that I would like to clarify, two things that I said. Two tapes ago, I made a comment that when God wants to speak to you, He sends a man, He does not speak to you through visions and voices, and those of us that are mature in God know that the God does speak to us in voices, some people hear an audible voice and many of us get visions.
The reason I said that, was that we had some very young believers in the service that I happened to know were delving in the occult, and I just felt led of the Lord to say that to them, because that is a true word to very young believers. One of them came to me last week, and gave me a testimony which just confirmed to me that God really did want them to hear that.
She said to me, Well you know my husband has a friend, he is not really saved, but he reads the Bible sometimes, and he was reading the Bible the other day, and he had a revelation. I said, Oh really? Tell me about it. She said, Yes, he had a revelation, first all chills came over his body, and there apparently is an inheritance that he has been waiting for, some money that he knew was coming to him that he has been waiting for, for a long time. Chills came all over his body, and a voice said to him, you are going to have your inheritance, and then he received a real peace. We talked and I told her that, that really sounded like a demon, that God does not usually communicate like that. She was very shocked, we had a long talk, we spoke for about a half an hour, I gave her a lot of information about demons and about the fact that spirit is spirit, God is a legal spirit, and a demon is an illegal spirit, and they have much in common. Just like in the human realm, you know there are men, there are women, there are all different kinds of people, but we all speak with the vocal chords, we all speak by the same means, and we all see by the same means. Evil spirits communicate by the same means that God communicates, because spirit is spirit.
She received it, and the word of the Lord to her was that she had a lot to learn, but I just wanted to put on this tape, in case anybody heard that tape and said, What is Pastor Vitale talking about, she knows that God speaks to us and gives us visions, the Lord just had me say it to those people, and it is on the tape. That is the answer to that one. The second thing that I would like to talk to about is that I have been speaking about the redeemed, I have been speaking about the golden candlestick in the book of Revelation as being the redeemed soul of man, and then I said, in the last meeting that one of the judgments on, I think it was the church of Ephesus, if they did not repent, God was going to put the candlestick out of its place, and we said what that meant was, that the moral order of your redeemed soul would be stirred up and when the dust fell down, it would be in a moral order where Satan was ruling over you again.
The question occurred to me when I was listening to this tape, that somebody might be saying, well if your soul is redeemed to the point that it is gold, how could it be stirred up so that the moral was changed again. Did I make that clear? This is the answer to the question. First of all, when God portrays the candlestick as gold, we know that God, when God looks at us, He sees us as the finished product, number one, He sees us as the finished product, and when He looks at this utterly fallen reprobate creation, He looks at us as we are gong to be when the creation is finished, so He sees us as gold, He knows that we are going to be redeemed ultimately, and the second point is that redemption is not the same thing as salvation.
Redemption means to be purchased. We have many people in the church world today, they are God's people, they have been purchased, they have the Holy Spirit, they speak in tongues, and to me that means they have been purchased, He said, You are mine, but they are not saved, their soul has not been cleansed, and their mind is not revealing the mind of the wisdom and the love of God, it is revealing the mind and the wisdom and the hatred of the carnal mind.
We know that, there are people throughout the church world that are in this condition. When Jesus that the redeemed candlestick is the totality of the living soul in its redeemed state, it means that He imputed His anointing to it, and He therefore describes it as being gold, but if you do not repent, your moral order can be stirred up and Satan can rule over you, because you are not saved, you are redeemed. Did I make that clear?
There is a whole spectrum of the category of the people that would fall under the category of being redeemed. There are believers that I just described that they are manifesting Satan, although they have the Holy Spirit, and then there are believers that manifest Christ a lot, manifest Christ a lot, and actually the group that Jesus was speaking to when He said, Repent and do the first works, or I will turn your candlestick over, He was really speaking to people whose moral order had really been corrected. I hope you all know what I am talking about when I talk about immoral order. We were originally, when God created us we had a spiritual moral order and this is our soul, and God was ruling, the soul was underfoot, and therefore there was no sin. The human soul is inherently evil, we are evil, natural man is evil, but God was ruling so sin had not yet been revealed. This was the age of innocence, this was the age of innocence, we were capable of sin because sin was present in our make up, but it was not manifesting because God was keeping it underfoot.
Then when God withdrew and replaced Himself with the law, and the law was controlling the living soul, the law was not powerful enough to keep the sin that was in the living soul from manifesting, the law was not powerful enough. Satan came out and he broke the law, and he went on top, the moral order changed. You see over here it was God on top, then it was the law on top, but Satan knocked the law out, he went on top, and sin manifested and we died, we died. The moral order changed from innocence to death.
Nobody left, no element left the creation, it just changed places. It is like when you have water and you heat it, it turns to steam, the same basic chemical element in a different form. That is what happened to the living soul, and we are going back in this hour. Jesus Christ is starting to rule in the living soul again, He is restoring the moral order to the first condition. It is going to be a little different, it is not going to be exactly the same, it is going to be permanent, and He called it life, He called it life. When Jesus Christ rules in the living soul and He rules over the sin in the living soul and keeps it underfoot, He calls it life, and there are many believers in the church today, mature believers that by the power of God are keeping the sin in their own minds underfoot.
If a thought crops up and says, Hate your sister, envy your sister, they are saying, I rebuke you, get down under the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ, Father I repent. That is how they are living their lives. There are people in the church world like this, and I believe that it is this category of believers that Jesus was really speaking to in the case of Ephesus, when He said, I walk in the midst of the golden candlesticks, I have walked within the midst of your own mind, and by my power, you have received life, your moral order has been restored to that of life, but He said, Repent, even though you are doing all the right works, even though you are putting every, you are putting the thoughts under your feet and you are discerning evil, and you are hating wickedness and you are doing all of the works of God, you are still required to repent because in your state of being, you are still a fallen creation.
When I say repent I mean, you have to say, you have to acknowledge that you are not yet equal with me. We do have believers in the church world today brethren, they really believe that in their fallen condition, they are the sons of God, you cannot be a son of God in your fallen condition.
When Christ appears in you in His fullness, you shall be a son of God. We are in the process of becoming a son of God, but we have to know who we are in relationship to God, we are still a natural man. Until He appears through our every word, thought, and deed, we are still a natural man and we are moving towards His righteousness. He said, You are doing all of the works, and you are putting sin underfoot, you hate evil, you are doing everything, but repent, confess that you are still a natural man, you have not arrived yet, and if you do not, if you do not repent, if you do not confess that you are a natural man, that you have not arrived at perfection, what I am going to do is I am going to show you that you have not arrived at perfection. How am I going to do it? I am going to show you that you are not there, I am going to take your moral order, and I am going to knock it down, and I am going to send you right back in, and you are going to find out that you have not arrived yet.
That is what He is saying. There is a difference between the, and they are still redeemed, they are still redeemed, if they do not repent, and He stirs up their moral order, and sends them back to this condition, they are still redeemed, because what they are doing is they are going back to the condition of the people that have the imputed anointing, the people that could still have the Holy Spirit, the people that are in the basic churches today, that is what He is sending them back to, they are still redeemed. You could be redeemed but not saved. Did I make that clear?
Hallelujah, we are moving on today to the church of Smyrna, we are in the book of Revelation, chapter 2. I am going to read to you the alternate translation of verses 1-7, which is the church of Ephesus, which appears to me to be a very mature church in the area that we were just talking about, that as I understand it from our study here, and I am not really ahead of you, I am just doing this a church at a time, they appear to be as mature as you could be, without having been glorified.
What is the danger to them, what is the danger to a believer that is as mature as you could be, and who is not glorified, someone who has power to heal and to deliver, someone who has great revelation, someone who has the power to implement, and the knowledge to implement the power of God and put sin under their foot, what is the great danger when you are in that condition, does anybody know? Pride, watch out, it will destroy you, it will destroy you.
Jesus is not being a mean guy, He is saying, You had better admit that pride is a very real enemy because if I do not knock you down when you do not repent, pride will destroy you totally, so I am going to get you before pride gets you. That is what He is saying, He is saying, I love you, I am going to knock you down, and put you back to the imputed anointing where all you have in the Holy Spirit and you dance around all day, I am going to knock you back to that, before I let pride steal all of the work that I have done in you. He loves us, we have to keep a right spirit in our head.
Everything He does is out of love, and every chastisement is out of love, and His soul purpose in our life is to bring us into His image. He is not out to get us, He is not out to get us, He loves us, and He wants to join Himself to us, and He desires to join Himself to us, He lusts with a godly lust to join Himself to us, and He is working with a single mindedness with a goal towards one thing, He does not look to the left and He does not look to the right, and He will not stop working, and He works day and night until He brings us into His image, until He appears in us, and everything that He does towards us works for our good. Even if we seem to step backwards, we will go two steps forward in the near future, glory to God.
Revelation chapter 2, this is the seven churches of the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ to Saint John, chapter 2:1-7;
1. Write to the angels of the church at Ephesus saying, the one that possesses and holds the fullness of the spiritual man in an upright position with the right hand of his righteousness, even the one who walks in the midst of the redeemed living soul says;
2. I know how you labor to survive as a natural man, and I also know of the intense labor, trouble, and toil you exercise as you strive to enter into the kingdom of God, and your hopeful endurance as you await the spiritual change which will result in your admittance. And how you find the worthlessness depravity and injuriousness of the natural man unbearable, and you have scrutinized and tested those men which say they are apostles of God, but are really not, and have discovered that they are not what they say they are, but deceitful men and liars.
Yes, there are false apostles in the church. I heard somebody preach as recently as two years ago, there are no longer any false apostles in the church, and he quoted I believe it was the book of Peter, where Peter says, Beware of false apostles and false prophets, I think Peter said, false prophets. He said, this book was written 2,000 years ago, there are no more false prophets in the church. Oh really? Oh really? Verse 3;
3. And you have endured with a cheerful and hopeful endurance of Jesus Christ, and have intensely labored and toiled by the power of my Spirit to enter into the kingdom of God, despite all of the trouble and affliction opposing you on the soul realm, and you have not weakened or given up. But nevertheless, I have something against you, because if you did not forsake the benevolence, and protection of God, when you laid aside your inherited spiritual authority and willfully sinned, you would not be where you are today.
4. Remember then, that despite your admirable effort to enter into the kingdom of God, you are nevertheless a creation which as a result of spiritual weakness has fallen from its original high estate, so confess how weak you are in your own power, and by My Spirit once again, express the life of Christ in your feelings, and your mind and deed, or else I will manifest in you with speed and power, stirring up the dust which frame or redeemed soul is made of, and rearrange the moral order or the piece of land where you dwell, once again permitting Satan to have dominion over you.
As we just discussed, you will still be redeemed, but you will be in a different phase, of the process known as your salvation. Verse 7;
7. Let everyone who can understand spiritual things hear what the Spirit of God is saying to the men in whom the Spirit of God's wealth. I will give eternal life which can only be found in God's spiritual realm of total provision to the one who overcomes the soul realm. Glory to God. AT
Before we go on to the church of Smyrna, the Lord asked me to emphasize that point in the verse 7, where spiritual life dwells. Spiritual life is only in the son brethren, spiritual life is not in the Holy Spirit, it is in no other name under the heavens, but the name of the son of God, glory to God, the life is in the son. 1 John 5:11 says;
1 JOHN 5:11
11. And this is the record that God hath given to us eternal life and this life is in His son.
12. He that hath the son hath life, and he that hath not the son of God hath not life. KJV
The Holy Spirit is not the son. John 6:40;
40. And this is the will of Him that sent me that everyone which seeth the son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life. KJV
So you not only have to have the son, you have to see Him, because when He sees Him, what? You are going to be like Him. When you see Him you are going to have Him. You got to have the son, we are not talking about the Holy Spirit. 2 John 1:9;
2 JOHN 1:9
9. Whosoever transgresseth and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the son. KJV
Doctrine is important brethren, the church world is in an unfortunate condition today, where there is a lot of squabbling about doctrine. We do not fight about doctrine, but we also should not say that doctrine is not important. With regards to our spiritual maturation, we are not to argue with anybody, we are to relate to each other in the love of God, and we could talk doctrine to the point that we are in agreement, or the point that we can disagree in a godly way, there is nothing wrong with disagreeing if you are not manifesting all over the place and trying to force them to accept your doctrine.
There is nothing wrong with a godly discussion at all, but very few people can do that, very few people can do that. They get very upset if you disagree with them, they interpret it to mean that you think that they are wrong, and they feel threatened by it and rejected by it.
We have to use wisdom, but on the other hand, I have head preachers preach it, doctrine is not important. Well it is true, we cannot separated by doctrine, but brethren, if you want Christ to appear in you, He is not going to appear in you without the doctrine. One of the signs that He is appearing in you, is that you have the doctrine of God, and the other sign is, anybody? Power by the imparted anointing, power to heal and deliver and bring victory in people's lives, merely by mercy rising up in your heart and you are speaking it forth.
Those are the two signs that the son is coming forth in you, those are the two witnesses, the word, and the spirit. The word is the truth of the doctrine of Christ. Brethren, if you are running around believing in the rapture, that is not a sign that Christ is appearing in you. We all have false doctrines, we all see through a glass darkly, because if there is anyone around that has the whole truth, he would be in the image of Christ, and if he is around I do not know him outside of Jesus Christ.
We all have error, but do not discount the importance of the doctrine, we have to pray and ask God for the truth, and then we do not argue with anybody, we just keep on going, and doing the best we can to understand God, and go to a place or deal with people where we can find out the truth, but do not discount the doctrine, because the doctrine is one of the signs that He is appearing in you, you must get the truth, in due season, without killing each other, you know there has been an over correction in the church, preachers trying to stop all of this squabbling, saying that doctrine does not matter, doctrine does matter, but we have to deal with it in a mature level, amen?
There are many doctrines in the world. Job 11:4;
4. For thou hast said, My doctrine is pure and I am clean in thine eyes. KJV
Job said I am clean in the eyes of God because my doctrine is pure, because when we have the true doctrine, we are going to be clean, so he says my doctrine is pure, I am okay, and I am suffering with all that I am suffering, that makes God unrighteous, but Job said that he is pure and in Job 11:4 the interpretation of his being pure is that his doctrine is clean. There is an acknowledgment right there that when we manifest the doctrine of God, it is a sign that we have been cleansed. Jeremiah 10:8;
8. But Israel is altogether brutish and foolish, the stock is a doctrine of vanities. KJV
I am not going to take the time now, but that is talking about the stock of the tree that has been cut down, and the tree that has been cut down brethren is the natural man, and I am not going to take anymore time today, but it is the natural man, his roots are still in the earth, he has been slain but nevertheless he lives, that is everybody that is walking around in a human body without the life of God, he has been slain, but nevertheless he lives and Jeremiah 10:8 says;
8. But Israel is altogether brutish and foolish, the stock is a doctrine of vanities. KJV
Doctrine coming forth from the mind of the natural man is a doctrine of vanities, but it is in the earth and it is out there and it is trying to make you one of its disciples. Let us not be naive about this, there is a vicious spiritual warfare going on, and the warfare, the prize of the warfare is our minds. 2 Timothy 4:3-4;
2 TIMOTHY 4:3-4
3. For the time will come whey they will not endure sounds doctrine, but after their own lusts, they shall heap to themselves teachers have itching ears;
4. And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. KJV
They are going to be turned away from the doctrine of truth and they are going to be turned unto fables. We were just speaking about a situation last night where 400 people gathered in a church waiting to be raptured, they said goodbye to all of their friends and families, it is a fable brethren. It is a fairy tale, and it says right here that the people are going to turn away from the truth, why? Because what does the truth tell us, there is suffering involved in this thing. They do not want to hear that, and they are going to turn to the fables. Isaiah 28:9;
9. Whom shall Jesus teach knowledge and whom shall He make to understand doctrine? KJV
You cannot understand doctrine brethren, unless Jesus helps you to understand it. There is no way you can get this gospel of God, unless Jesus Christ gives it to you, you can study this Bible for 50 or 60 years of your life, and unless Jesus Christ reveals the spiritual truth of this word, you are going to come up with false doctrine. You cannot steal anything from God. If you do not give Him the glory, you are not going to get it, natural man thinks he can steal from God, you cannot.
When I was being trained up, I sat in the church where there was a powerful outpouring, and that preacher use to preach all of the time, you could sit in this church for five years, attend every meeting, and walk out with nothing, if God does not quicken it to you, and brethren I found out he was right. You cannot get anything from God with your money, with your manipulation, with your trickery or with anything else, everything that we get from God, is a free gift. It is an act of his mercy, and I see people in the church everywhere trying to strong arm God into giving them what they want, trying to strong arm God into giving them a ministry, trying to buy God with their money, you cannot do it, read the Bible, brethren, Simon the sorcerer tried to do it, you cannot do it, but men's minds are so dark, they cannot seem to understand this.
There is only one way that you can get something from God, humble yourself and repent. There is no other way you can get it, you might think you have it. The Hebrew children in Israel cried and moaned and groaned and they wanted meat and they got it, and while the meat was still in their mouth, destruction came upon them. Hallelujah. Glory to God.
9. Whom shall Jesus teach knowledge, and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? Them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. KJV
Sound doctrine is for mature believers brethren, and who is a mature believer? One who knows what we just said. You cannot get it by twisting God's arm, you cannot get it by buying the preacher, you cannot get it by stealing it from another ministry, you cannot do it. Matthew 7:28;
28. And it came to pass when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at His doctrine. KJV
Jesus had a doctrine that was different from other doctrines being preached in His day. John 7:16; and it astonished the people, why would it astonish them? It was different, it was different than what they were taught when they went to synagogue.
16. Jesus answered them and said, My doctrine is not mine but His that sent me.
17. If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. KJV
Doctrine falls into 2 categories, the doctrine of God and the doctrine of man. If there are 55 doctrines that you are aware of in the church world today, only one is of God, and 54 is of man, there is just 2 categories. Jesus said the doctrine was not His, He was an apostle of God, He fulfilled every office, He was a prophet, He was an evangelist, He was a pastor, He was all of them, and He said, The doctrine is not mine, God gave it to me. Jesus Christ the man said, God gave it to me, it is not a doctrine of man, glory to God, and He said it, how do you get the doctrine of God? You do His will, before you do His will, you have to repent and humble yourself brethren. There is only one way to get it, humble yourself, repent, and then do the will of God, and you will be get the gospel of God.
Evaluate yourself brethren, be honest with yourself, look upon your soul, if you are in outright rebellion, without any restraint, without even trying, asking God to give you deliverance, your doctrine is almost assuredly false. Evaluate yourself.
17. If any man will do His will, He shall know the doctrine of God, whether it be of God or whether I speak of myself. KJV
2. My doctrine shall drop as the rain...
3. Because I will publish the name of the Lord, ascribe ye greatness unto God. KJV
You want to know if someone is preaching the gospel of God, are they in rebellion, are they humble, are they repentant, are they doing the will of the Lord, are they glorifying God, or are they glorifying themselves brethren. Are they glorifying God, or are they glorifying themselves. Are you glorifying God, or are you glorifying yourself, check it out, check out everybody outside of you, and check out yourself. It is the safest way to go.
14. That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness whereby they lie in wait to deceive; KJV
That is what men are like brethren, they are crafty, they are cunning, and they lie in wait to deceive. That is our state of being, me too. That is our nature, it need to be controlled, it needs to be resisted, it needs to be rejected, that is why we paddle our children. When you are an adult, you are supposed to be paddling yourself in your head.
15. But speaking the truth in love, may grow up in to Him, in all things which is the head, even Christ. KJV
We had a prophecy like that just a few minutes ago, God is calling us to grow up brethren, and He is saying reject all of the false doctrines. Reject the prosperity doctrines, not that God will not bless you financially, but that should not be your heart's desire. Does anyone know what your heart's desire should be? To please God, to be in His image, to be Christ, He is going to appear in us, and there is only one way He is going to appear in us, we have to do it, everything of our own soul nature has to die, for Him to appear in us.
The simultaneous process of the death of the soul man and the birth of the Christ in us, and He is calling us in this ministry and the message is going out across the church world, some people come sooner than others, each man in his own order, but certainly here, you are being called to grow up, lay down your soul life, lay down all of your own glorification, and submit to God that, and He has things waiting for us that are better than anything we can imagine, just trust Him.
The church of Smyrna, verses 8-11;
8. And unto the angel of the church of Smyrna write, these things saith the first and last, which was dead and is alive.
9. I know thy works and tribulation and poverty, but thou art rich, and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.
10. Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer. Behold the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried and ye shall have tribulation 10 days, be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life. KJV
We discussed last week that the angel is the Christ that is emerging forth in you and the reason the word angel is singular, is that in this ministry, there is only one angel, he is in you and he is in you and he is in you, and he is in me, he is in a many membered congregation, known as Living Epistles Ministries, but there is only one angel and the ministry known as Living Epistles Ministries. This has been a great error in those who have tried to interpret this book, and the result of their false doctrine, is that they glorify the pastors of the local churches. They say Jesus is only speaking to the pastor, and you get the revelation from the pastor.
Brethren you get the revelation from the Christ in you. God sends you to a place like this, because He has raised me up as a teacher, but what you are supposed to do is listen and pray, and get it from the Christ in you. All I am doing is putting information into the computer that is your being, and either the Christ in you receives it or He rejects it. I hope that is clear, I think everybody here knows that. You are not supposed to be getting the revelation from me, it has to be birthed in your soul, it has to come forth as a part of your spiritual being. That is how you know it is real, not because you trust me, because I am wearing a red dress today. You have to get it from the Christ in you. Glory to God.
8. And unto the angel of the church is Smyrna...KJV
The word Smyrna is Strong's #4667, it is a place in Asia minor, and it is from a root that means myrrh. Myrrh is a spice that we read about a lot in the Bible, it is a perfume used as a perfumed ointment, and Unger's Bible Dictionary says, it is a well known resin which extracted from a tree, and it was used for perfume, it was used for embalming, and as an ingredient in the holy anointing oil, it was one of the gifts of the magi. I think what the Lord is saying is that it has a preservative quality, it has a preservative quality. Unger's Bible Dictionary says about Smryna, it is a rich and prosperous city of Ionia, 40 miles north of Ephesus at the mouth of a small river called Meles. Anciently it was one of the finest cities of Asia, and was called the lovely, the crown of Ionia, the ornament of Asia, it is now the chief city of Anatolia, with a mixed population of 200,000 people, 1/3 of whom are Christians. It was largely inhabited by Jews in Bible days who were bitterly opposed to both Christ and Christianity. The church of Smyrna becomes the type of suffering church, it will be observed that at Smyrna the church is still faithful and that against her, no word of reproach is uttered. She is the persecuted church. Glory to God.
8. And unto the angel of the church in Smyra write, these things saith the first and the last which was dead and is alive. KJV
As we know and have been studying Jesus Christ is the first, He is the first Adam and He is the last Adam, He is the son of God who descended into the earth, lost all of His riches because He gave His life to the earth that we could live and became the living soul. He is the first, the beginning the origin, the first cause of mankind, and he is also the last, we know that He is on a journey, He started up in the spiritual realm of God in pure spirit form, and He journeyed downward and as He descended He became the living soul, the creation of God, which was a spiritual entity, it was the formation of the mind, and that living soul fell, and as it descended, He became man as we know him today.
Then He started backwards up again, and at the end, and what He is doing today is He is being restored in you and in me, and there are several stages along the way, and the end of His journey will be, He will be the creation of God. This is the Lord Jesus Christ, He is doing this whole thing in a many membered body, you are a part of His body. He as a glorified spirit, He became a living soul, He became a fallen man, and at the end of His journey, He is going to be the creation of God, and the difference between the Lord in this realm of the spirit, and the Lord, the creation of God, is that He has returned to the realm of the Lord, who knows with what? Anybody, what did He return to the spiritual realm of God with? A redeemed soul, a redeemed soul and a glorified body. He is equal to God, He is equal in every way to God in the realm of the spirit, except that God is invisible, God the Father is invisible, He has no form or shape, and Jesus Christ is equal to God the Father, He also has a redeemed soul, and a glorified body and He can be seen in the realm of appearance, but He is God, He is equal to God, in 2 different forms.
We have water, steam and ice. We have water, we heat it, it turns into steam, water is likened to life on the soul realm, we really can see through it, it is not stable, it flows, it is a form of spirit, it is spirit on the soul realm. When you heat it, it changes form, it turns into vapor, that is typifying the life of God, the realm of the spirit, it has no form or shape, steam you can barely see, it goes up into the atmosphere, it is vapor, and when it descends, it becomes, what is water at its lowest point? Ice, it is hard, it is solid, it has form and shape, and you can see it, and that is the condition that natural man is in now, we are hard and solid, it has form and shape and you can see it.
We are going to become steam again, we are burning brethren. Are you having trials and tribulations. There is a flame inside of you, there is a fire inside of you and it is burning you up and your form is changing and this is what you are going to be like at the end of your trials and tribulations. There is hellfire alright, it is inside your mind. Glory to God. He was dead and He is alive. He descended into the condition of fallen man, He died, the spirit of God withdrew from Him, He died, nevertheless He lives, He has been glorified, He has been resurrected from the dead, He has ascended unto the right hand of the Father, and He shall live and He indeed lives forevermore, and all power in heaven and earth have been given unto Him.
He was alive and He died, nevertheless He lives, and because He lives you too shall live. Glory to God. Jesus Christ is addressing the church of Smyrna and He says to them;
9. I know thy works, and tribulation and poverty, but thou art rich...KJV
I know thy works and thy tribulation and they poverty. When we studied the church of Ephesus, we found out that the word works referred to the labor required to exist on this soul realm. You have to go to work, you have to clean your house, there is labor required to exists on the soul realm. Jesus is saying to them, I know that you are striving to live and support your family and do what you have to do, to survive on the soul realm, and I know your tribulations, and I know that you have pain, and that you have anguish, and that there is hardship in your life.
He said, I also know about your poverty, but you are rich. What does that mean? I know about your poverty, but you are rich. He says, I know you are doing what you have to do to be a natural man, I know that there is hardship in your life, and I know that you have poverty, but that you are rich, and I am going to go into this in more depth when I compare Ephesus to Smyrna, but what I am going to say right now, what I am going to suggest to you right now, is that the church of Smyrna did not move in any spiritual authority.
You may recall that the church of Ephesus, they had a lot of spiritual authority, they discerned the false prophets, they discerned evil and they hated it, they were a spiritual people, and I am going to suggest to you that the people of Smyrna were not a spiritual people. They had what would be likened to the Holy Spirit, I do not know exactly what they had, but just so that we can relate to the kind of Christians that they were, they were the kind of Christians for example that had the Holy Spirit, that goes to church and dances and sings and has no idea whatsoever of the baptism of suffering and the deep things of God that other Christians are moving into. When they hear it, they reject it.
That is what I am going to suggest to you. Nevertheless the Lord said, You are rich. Well what does that mean? They are rich, because of their potential in Christ, they might not know what is waiting for them, they might not know that Christ is going to appear in them, they might not understand any of these things, they might expect to be raptured and run away to a place where the streets are made of gold, they are poverty stricken, they are poverty stricken in their doctrine and they are poverty stricken in their power, but nevertheless they are rich because God is their Father, and there is an inheritance waiting for them. Glory to God. Hallelujah.
9. I know thy works, thy tribulation, and they poverty, but thou art rich, and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. KJV
We know that at the writing of this book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ to Saint John, that Christians had not yet been labeled Christians, they were Jews that had moved on to the new covenant of God. They never called themselves anything but Jews that had moved on to the new covenant. What John is saying here is this, I know the blasphemy which is the outrageous lie of those that call themselves Jews, and are not. When he is saying Jew, he is talking about what we would call a Christian today, and they say that they are Christians but they are not, and what is the sign that says you are not a Christian? They are of the synagogue of Satan. The word synagogue means a meeting place or an assembling. Most of here have been taught that the word church is the Greek word ecclesia which means the called out ones, and it is referring to your spiritual condition.
If you are a member of the church of Jesus Christ, you have spiritually been called out to join Him in a spiritual assembly, a spiritual body, but this word synagogue is referring to the natural assembling like we have here. Those of us here, we are both the church, we are the ecclesia and we are also the synagogue, we are also having a natural meeting amen? They call themselves Jews, but they are not, because they are of the synagogue of Satan. What is the natural meeting place if you are going to spiritualize this. The natural meeting place, where do we meet spiritually, we in bodies. We are the temple of the Holy Ghost, we are the synagogue of the Holy Ghost, we are the natural church of the Holy Ghost, He dwelleth in us, amen.
What Jesus Christ is saying here, they are of the church, they are of the house, they are of the synagogue, where Satan dwells. Where does Satan dwell brethren? Where does Satan dwell, does anybody know? In us, in our minds, he is in our minds and he is sitting in the temple of God, and he is lifting himself up as God and he is calling himself god, and he is doing ungodly signs and wonders and saying that it is God, so what is Jesus saying? I know your works, of the natural man, I know your suffering and I know your spiritual poverty, but you are still rich because you have an inheritance, and I know the outrageous lies of those which say they are Jews and they are not because they are of the synagogue of Satan, the doctrine coming out of their mouths is the doctrine of the harlot, of the carnal mind, and they are telling you that you are going to be raptured and that there is no trouble, and that there is no pain, and just ask God for you Cadillac and you are a king's kid, and you are going to get it.
They are not Jews brethren, they are not Christians. God said they are not Christians, but nevertheless they have an inheritance, they have not received it yet, they have not received it yet, that is a hard word. All of these Christians, they are running around saying they are completely saved, they are saying the process is completed in them, and the Lord Jesus Christ is saying, You have not even received your inheritance yet. How many here know that the Holy Spirit is the earnest of our inheritance, it is the earnest of our inheritance, it is a down payment, it is a sign, it is a token that says, Here, hold on to this gold coin, I am coming back for you, and I am going to make you a rich man, and when I send my servants to you, show them this coin, and they will know that you are the one, and they are going to give you the million dollars.
That is what the Holy Spirit is, it is the earnest of our inheritance, it is a sign, it is a token, it is the promise, it is the promise, and we have thousands if not millions of Christians across the face of the earth that have received the promise, they have received the token, they have received the sign, there has been no work done in their heart at all, and they think that they have arrived, and they are out there persecuting the people that are trying to move on in God, but they are in ignorance brethren, so we have to pray for them and bless them.
But Jesus is exposing them here, and that is what He is talking about. I know your labors to lead a godly life in the natural realm, I know your anguish, now He says, I know your tribulation, but He really does not describe that tribulation, and we are going to find out that He says, I know your tribulation, and later on He is going to say, There shall be tribulation. There are 2 kinds of tribulation we are going to get into that later.
9. I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, but thou art rich, and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews and are not, but are of the synagogue of Satan. KJV
Smyrna is a spiritually immature church that has received the promise. Verse 10, oh I have an alternate translation for you. Verses 8-9, Revelation 2:
8. And write to the many membered spiritual man in the church of Smyrna. The original source and ultimate end of mankind, the one who died when he gave his life to the earth and the one whom God the Father raised from the dead, says the following things to you, church of Smyrna.
9. I know how hard you work to exist in this realm of death, and the pressure and affliction you endure, and I also know your lack of earthly goods, but you possess great spiritual riches by promise, and I know that the evil speaking of those which say they are servants of God, and are not, but who in their hearts are a part of this world system.
10. Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer... KJV
They are just starting to enter into tribulation, future, fear none of those things you shall suffer, but in the verse before Jesus said, I know that you are in tribulation, 2 kinds of tribulation in the church of Smyrna.
10. ...behold the devil shall cast... KJV
This word some is in italics, it is not in the original Greek, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that is not in the original Greek, it says;
10. ...behold the devil shall cast of you into prison. AT
What part of you is going to be cast into prison? Anybody know? Your soul, Christ in you is not going to be cast into prison, brethren, Christ in you is not going to be cast into prison, your soul, your carnal mind is going to be cast into prison, and the reason you cannot go into tribulation before you receive the token is that if God put you through this process without some manifestation of Christ in your life, you would be utterly destroyed, if your soul dies and Christ is not there to take over your life, you will be destroyed. There is no tribulation until you reach a certain point in Christ where you are going to be preserved throughout the tribulation, and the name Smyrna means preservation. You are going to be preserved during this process that is going to destroy your soul, praise the Lord. Glory to God.
10. Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer, behold the devil shall cast that part of you which is not Christ, into prison, that you might be tried. AT
The prisons brethren are where? Anybody? The prisons are in your mind, spiritual things are within, the prisons are in your mind, he is going to put up stumbling blocks in your mind for why? For the specific purpose that the spiritual man in you should be tried. Your soul man is going to be in prison, and afflicted to see if your spiritual man will rise up and reveal Christ. That is a rough word brethren, but it is the truth.
You know how to prune a plant? You want to see it grow brethren, you prune it, and you cut all of the branches off, and you take all of the leaves off, it is a similar principle, something has got to die, so that another part of you can live. Your soul is going to be greatly afflicted for the specific purpose of seeing if your spirit is mature enough to rise up in the midst of this affliction and prevail. Glory to God.
10. Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer, behold the devil shall cast that part of you, your carnal mind into prison, that your spiritual man might be tried, and ye shall have tribulation ten days. AT
He just said, I know that you have tribulation, now He is saying, Ye shall have tribulation ten days, well I am going to suggest to you that the tribulation that the Lord is talking about in verse 9 is the tribulation of judgment. When we first come to the Lord, when we are children that do not understand we do things that oppose the Lord God, the judgments fall on us. It is not true that judgments do not fall on you once you receive that gold coin, God is not mocked, you shall sow what you reap.
Even if you sow in ignorance, you shall reap what you sow. You shall reap what you sow. They were having tribulation, but it was the judgments of God that were falling on their ignorant behavior, they were in anguish, they were suffering, but they did not know why, because they were reaping what they sowed.
He said to them, And I am coming to you, and I am going to cast your soul in prison so that your spirit man can be tried, and you are going to enter into a different measure of tribulation, you are going to enter into a tribulation where you have knowledge that all things work for the good for those who love the Lord, and that God is doing this so that by the power of God you can rise up and prevail by implementing His principles, by His power in your life, 2 totally different kinds of tribulation. Glory to God.
That tribulation is going to last for 10 days. We have been studying here over the last few weeks, we know that 10 is the number of the law, and that days refer to a period of time, not necessarily 24 hours, it is a period of time that it takes a celestial body to circle around the sun, and we are all celestial bodies brethren, and our sun is the Lord Jesus Christ, and it is a period, it is a period of existence where there is light and there is heat as opposed to darkness, it is a period of existence where Christ is revealed in our lives in some measure, glory to God.
He says, Be faithful unto death, your heads are not being cut off brethren, I am sorry nothing as exciting as a gilitean cutting your head off, but be faithful to God unto the death of your soul. Smyrna is an immature church, how can they be faithful to God to the death of their soul, they have very little knowledge. I suggest to you brethren, what they have is the law of God, it is the law of God.
You cannot cheat on your income tax and give you money to the church. God tells us what is right and wrong, God tells us credit is illegal, God tells us not to borrow money, God tells us not to owe no man anything, not to owe any man anything. There are spiritual principles throughout the Scriptures, throughout the Psalms and mostly the book of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, that tell us how to live our life, we are told how to relate to one another, we are told how to relate to a husband and wife in marriage, we are told how to relate to our children, we are told how to relate to God, we are told what to do with our finances.
There is instruction in the word of God brethren, there is instruction in the word of God, be faithful to that which has been revealed to you, until your soul dies and the righteousness of God becomes a natural thing to you, until it comes to you naturally, and maybe this is a good time to share with you something that I really wanted to share with you, that there are many areas of my life in which I still implement the law, somebody, I had an experience, and I cannot remember what that experience was, but I know that I wanted to talk to you about this, and God just reminded me now, so I will have to add lib it, because I cannot remember what the experience was, but for example, someone will really hurt me, and hatred will rise up in my heart, I mean they have really hurt me, and I cannot take the victory, I cannot love that person, it hurt me too badly, the way I deal with it brethren, is that I make a statement and I speak it right in to the spiritual realm, Hatred is illegal, it is ungodly, I resist it, I deny it, I acknowledge that God says it is wrong, but in my heart I am not even repentant, this is my prayer, I was not even repentant in my heart, I wanted to do this thing, and I said, But Lord, I acknowledge that I am in deep sin because I am not even resisting, I am not even repentant, but I acknowledge that your law says it is wrong, and I am throwing myself on your mercy. God was merciful to me, He put repentance in my heart, and once I repented, He delivered me.
If something grabs a hold of you brethren, and you are not even repentant, do not think you are without help, do not think that God is against you, do not think that He is coming looking for you, because you are not even repentant. He is for you, He is not against you, just declare that in your mind, your faithful to the word of God but your emotions have utterly captivated you, and He will deliver you.
There is power in the law, and I know it is very common for Christians to run around saying, We are not under the law we are under grace. Brethren, we are under the law, in many areas of our life, cling to it, it is a good thing, it is not a grievous thing, it is a good thing, and it can bring life if we use it properly, it does not have to destroy us, it only kills us when we do not, it will kill us if we cannot lay hold of the power of God to help us, but when we have the power of God, it will still bring destruction in our lives, if we resist it. Be faithful to the law of God and He will do the work in your spirit and in your soul. It is valuable, the law is valuable, study it, and utilize it properly so that it can save your life. Glory to God.
10. ...be faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown a life. KJV
Glory to God, the word crown is Strong's #4735, and what it really means a wreath or garland. Did you ever see a movie about ancient Greece or Rome, where they put garland leaves on Caesar's head, that is what it really means, it is not the fairy tale type of golden crown with the spikes, although there is, that word is used in the Scripture, for that kind of crown, but this crown is the woven wreath, and we know that we are a three-fold creation, and there is a, I believe it is a proverb, that says a three-fold cord is not easily broken, well the three-fold cord brethren is that we are a three part creation. We are talking spiritually now, we are human spirit, we are human soul, and Satan we are not going to name, he is in there, but we are not going to name him, but ultimately, the three-fold tie that is going to be braided, the three-fold cord that is going to give us a braid, is the Spirit of God.
It is the Spirit of God. Satan, he is in here, but God does not even name him. The three-fold cord is the human spirit, the human soul, and the Spirit of God, and when they are braided together brethren, you have eternal life. Glory to God. He says if you are faithful unto death, I am going to give you a crown of life. What He is saying is, if your soul dies, you are going to live by my spirit, the third element, I am going to braid you together, I am going to weave you together with me, and the result of it is going to be eternal life, hallelujah. Alternate translation of the book of Revelation 2:10;
10. Do not be afraid of the things which you are about to suffer, but be aware that I will permit your carnal mind to throw you into prison, so that your spirit can be tested as to how mature it is, and you shall suffer anguish, and be subjected to a process which will strip your souls of the things which do not glorify God. And this is going to happen in the days that Christ is revealed in your flesh simultaneously with the law of sin and death. AT
This is going to happen to you in the days that Christ appears in your mind, simultaneously with Satan, and with the prince of the power of the air, who rules in the realm of the law.
10. ...so join with God in your mind by His law, while your soul is dying, and do that by acknowledging His law, and I will raise your soul from the dead by intertwining myself with it. AT
I will raise your soul from the dead by intertwining myself with it. Let me read that again.
10. Do not be afraid of the things which you are about to suffer, but be aware that I will permit your carnal mind to throw you into prison, so that your spirit can be tested as to how mature it is. And you shall suffer anguish and be subjected to the process which will strip your souls of the things which do not glorify God, in the days that Christ is revealed in your flesh simultaneously with the law of sin and death in your mind. AT
God and Satan manifesting back and forth, back and forth, in those days of that confusion;
10. ...join with God in your mind while your soul dies, by acknowledging His law, and I will raise your soul from the dead by intertwining myself with it. AT
Satan is not dead, he is not defeated, and in many areas of our lives, he is not underfoot, and in some areas where he is underfoot he gets out, he is wild raging beast. Matthew 16:25;
25. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it, and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. KJV
If you run from the tribulation, if you run from this process, if you try to save your natural life, you are going to lose it anyway, you cannot win, but if you submit to God, you will be resurrected from the dead, when He joins Himself to your human soul and your human spirit, glory to God. Verse 11;
11. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the spirit saith unto the churches. He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. KJV
I just want to spend a few minutes on the second death, it has never been taught here, and I touched on it once before, I think there are some people here that really have not heard this teaching. The first death, the first death, what is the first death? Does anybody know what the first death is? How do you die? What happens to you that results in your death, does anybody know? You lose the spirit, and we descended into the earth, we were alive with the Father in the realm of the spirit before the foundations of the earth, we were alive, we were one with God, we sang with Him in the heavenlies, before the foundations of the earth, we died. The Spirit of God removed Himself from us, we lost the Spirit of God, He separated Himself from us, lost the Spirit of God and we died.
We live in the realm of death and the definition of death is the carnal mind, death is a life of separation or an existence without God, an existence in which we are separated from God. That is what death is. Death is, no God in our life, no God in our life. That is what death is, and the first death resulted from a separation of God. The second death, so the first death was the death of the spirit life, amen? The first death was the death of the spirit life. What is the second death going to be? It is going to be the death of the soul life. Death is no God in life and it is also the soul life, amen, it is the soul life, that is a life of death.
The life of spirit, an existence in the realm of the spirit is life, an existence in the realm of the soul is death, death of the soul life. The second death, the first death was the death of the spirit life, the second death is the death of the soul life. Is that clear to everybody here? Glory to God. The first death is the death of the spirit life, the second death is the death of the soul life. If the death of the spirit life resulted in the soul life, what does the death of the soul life going to result in? A life of the spirit, that is all we are, we are either soul or we are spirit, we are one or the other. The death of the life in the spirit resulted in a life in the realm of the soul, and the death of the life in the realm of the soul is going to restore us to life in the spirit. It is for all intents and purposes the death of death. The first death was the death of the spirit, or the death of life, and the second death is the death of the soul or the death of death.
Is that clear? The death of death, the second death is the death of death, and we are told in verse 11 of chapter 2, if you overcome, you shall not be hurt of the second death. What does that mean? It means, because of the presence of the life of God in your being, when your soul dies, you will not be destroyed, because your life is going to be hid in Him, and you are going to live with Him, glory to God. Alternate translation;
11. Those who have the ability to hear with spiritual ears, listen to what the Spirit of God is saying unto the vessels which house His Spirit, the spiritual man that overcomes his own soul, shall not be damaged when death or existence on the soul realm is destroyed. AT
Glory to God. Recap Revelation 2:8-11, verse 8;
8. And write to the many membered spiritual man, in the church of Smyrna, the original source and ultimate end of mankind, the one who died when he gave his life to the earth, and the one whom God the Father raised from the dead, He says, the following things to you.
9. I know how hard you work to exist in this realm of death, and the pressure and affliction you endure as you strive to enter into the kingdom of God, and your lack of earthly goods, but you possess great spiritual riches, and I know the evil speaking of those which say they are servants of God and are not, but who in their hearts are a part of this world system.
10. Do not be afraid of the things which you are about to suffer, but be aware that I will permit your carnal mind to throw you into prison, so that your spirit can be tested as to how mature it is, and you shall suffer anguish and be subjected to a process which will strip your souls of the things which do not glorify God, in the days that Christ is revealed in your flesh, simultaneously with the law of sin and death. Join with God therefore in your mind, while your soul dies, by acknowledging His law, and I will raise your soul from the dead, by intertwining myself with it.
11. Those who have the ability to hear with spiritual ears, listen to what the Spirit of God is saying unto the called out ones, the spiritual man that overcomes his own soul shall not be damaged when death or existence on the soul realm is destroyed. AT
You will not be damaged because your life shall be hid in Christ, but there is a condition, you have to overcome your soul, you have to come out, come out from her my people, and be not polluted by her sins. I am sorry if this upsets some of these die hard deliverance people, but it is not the Roman Catholic church that is being spoken about in that Scripture. You have to come out of the soul realm in your mind, you have to join to God in your mind. Hallelujah.
Just to wind it down I did a comparison between Ephesus and Smyrna, and I would like to give you this, so you could take it home with you, glory to God, hallelujah. I am doing it a little differently than I did it last week, God seems to have changed the format here. The first category that I am dealing with is the description of Jesus, let us try it this way, I will put Smyna over here, the first category is the description of Jesus and we are told in Ephesus that He is the one that holdeth the seven stars in His right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks, and what we are saying is that Jesus is actively manifesting in Ephesus. He is actively manifesting, His Spirit can be seen in measure.
Actively manifesting in Ephesus, and He is also because He holds the seven stars in His right hand, He is sustaining in an upright position the spiritual man. If spiritually you are in Ephesus, what it means, He is actively manifesting in you, and the result of that is, is that your spiritual man is standing, you have power with God, spiritual man is standing in measure, this is all in measure, and what it means is power with God. That is what it means.
In Ephesus, Jesus Christ is actually manifesting resulting in your spiritual man standing, and what it means to you is that you have power with God. In the church of Smyrna we are told that if you fit into this category, He tells you He is the first and the last, which was dead and alive. I suggest to you that Jesus is declaring to the church that He is alive. You do not go to someone that knows you are alive and declare to them that you are alive. He is going to people in the church that have received that token of the Spirit and He says, I am not dead, I am alive, He is revealing Himself to a spiritually powerless church, glory to God, hallelujah, and He is therefore not yet actively sustaining them or manifesting in them.
They are spiritually weak, without power, spiritually without power. They are also without knowledge, they do not even know He is alive, they do not even know He is alive. Glory to God. The second category we are dealing with is the relationship of the people, now I hope you all know, that each church is referring to a category of believers, do you all know that, I hope you all know that. The second thing we are dealing with is this particular type of believers, relationship to tribulation. The church of Ephesus, Jesus says to them, He knows there works and their cheerful endurance, they are in the midst of tribulation, and they are enduring it cheerfully. I pray that they come for my life that I can fit into that category, I am screaming and yelling all over the place.
These people are enduring it cheerfully, and also we are told with regard to the church of Ephesus, that they are bearing this great weight of tribulation, and they have endured and they have labored and they have not fainted, they have not given up, for the sake of Jesus Christ's Spirit, for the sake of His Spirit, they are not being judged, they are not being judged for what they have sowed, they are not reaping what they have sowed. The judgment that is upon them, is for the specific purpose of bringing them into the image of Christ, it is the second kind of tribulation, it is the second kind of tribulation.
They are having tribulation that glorifies God. They are having the second kind, the mature kind of tribulation, and the church at Smyrna, the Scripture says they have the works of the natural man, but there is no comment about them laboring for the things of the spirit, which Jesus said to the church at Ephesus, where He said, I know that you are striving to achieve the things of the spirit, He did not say that Smyrna. They are not doing that, they are faithful to their families, and they are living, striving to live decent natural lives, but there is no labor to enter into the realm of the spirit, they have no, it is their spiritual children.
He says their poverty stricken, they have no power, no spiritual power, but they are rich because of the promise and they have the two kinds of tribulation are present at Smyrna, they are reaping what they sowed and Jesus tells them that He warns them that they shall enter into the tribulation that is going to bring forth the image of Christ. Smyrna has two kinds of tribulation, she has both kinds of tribulation. Ephesus just has that mature tribulation, she is no longer reaping ungodly, what she has, the ungodly seeds that she has sowed, she is discerning evil, she is hating it, she is declaring the false apostles, she knows what is going on, her, any evil that she is sowing is at an absolute minimum, she is right on top of it because she has spiritual sight.
The third category we are going to compare is the spirituality, and I just sort of went into that, Ephesus has discernment, thou canst not bear them which are evil, she also has judgment, thou has tried them which say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars, and she has righteousness. Thou hatest the deeds of the nicolaitans, which God also hates, she has discernment, she has judgment, and she has righteousness, a mature church brethren, a mature church, and she is in tribulation.
Smyrna, there is no judgment, no judgment, you do not paddle a six month old baby, no judgment brethren. When God calls you to, and what He is saying is do not be afraid, He is treating this church like it is a real baby church, they do not understand, even you know, even if you have a seven year old child, on an older child, there is not supposed to be any judgment for that child, if they do not understand what they did wrong. We had visiting ministry here last night, he gave some very counsel, he said, Before you paddle your children, you are supposed to sit them down and say, Look, this is what I expect of you, I expect you to make your bed every morning, if you do not make your bed every morning, I am going to paddle you, now you choose, will you make your bed, and be at peace with me, or will you not make your bed, and be at war with me, the result of which is, you shall be paddled.
God did not paddle you, well that is not true, you will reap what you sow, but you get less stripes than when you know about it. You get less stripes then when you know about it. That is what He is saying here, there is no judgment for the church of Smyrna, so apparently He is not dealing with the sowing and reaping of Smyrna, He is not even talking about it, He is just treating them as babies, He is saying, Now you are entering into a process that is for your good, that is going to bring you into my image. That is more like sending your children off to school, and saying, Look I am not punishing you, I know you do not want to leave me, I know you do not want to go, this is not a punishment, but it is for your good, you have to go to school, it is totally different than saying, you have to make your bed, are you going to do it or not. This is something that is unpleasant for the child, but it is not a punishment, two totally different kinds of tribulation.
He is dealing in love with the church of Smyrna, and He is saying unto them, I am not judging, I am not paddling you, but you got to go through, you have to go through. This tribulation comes and it is going to result with Christ ruling in your life, and those that are in this spiritual condition as described by the church of Smyrna, they have no choice, they have no choice. You tell your daughter, make your bed and do not get paddled, do not make your bed and do get paddled, you do have, the child has a choice, the child has no choice about school, she has to go, no choice.
Every man in his order will enter into the tribulation that will result in his being brought forth in the image of Christ, and you cannot say no to God, what an abominable lie being circulated in the church today, you cannot say no to God, when your number is up brother, you are going, you go willfully or you are going screaming and yelling but you are going. You are going, you are going, there is no 2 ways about it.
You are going whether you choose or whether you refuse. The last category, did I put that down, no judgment, yeah I did put that down. And the last category that I have is he that overcometh, and what the promise is to he that overcometh, and with regard to the church of Ephesus, this is the mature spiritual church that has discernment, judgment, and righteousness. They are deep into the tribulation, the result of which Christ is going to appear in them, He has indeed partially appeared in them, and the promise to he that overcometh in this condition, is that they shall be totally joined to Christ in the fullness of the spiritual realm of God, where every need is met by the power of God, and I will just say here, the promise to the church of Ephesus, is the fullness of God, and everything that it implies in your life.
With the less mature church of Smyrna, to he that overcometh is promised, he will not die, when his soul dies, the promise is that he will not be completely destroyed when his soul dies, because the result of the tribulation is that Christ shall be, at least be living in you if not appearing in you, there is going to be enough of Him present that you do not lose your life as the result of the tribulation. Glory to God.
The Christ that is going to be living in you when you are not destroyed is the Christ that is described at the beginning of the book of Ephesus. He that walks in the midst of the golden candlesticks, when you get through, when Smyrna gets through the tribulation, when this immature manifestation of the church gets through her tribulation, she is going to be in the condition that Ephesus is in when we first started studying her.
Smyrna is a carnal church, she has no power, she has no discernment, she has no judgment, she has no righteousness, when she goes through her phase of the tribulation, she is going to be where Ephesus is, Jesus is going to be walking in the midst of the golden candlesticks. She is going to have discernment, she is going to have judgment, she is going to have righteousness, she is going to be spiritually mature, moving in spiritual power.
I just, God just told me to close with this statement for whoever is going to be listening to this tape, nobody is bound into one church category. All seven categories are for everyone of us, they represent seven spiritual realms that we shall all enter into and Lord willing move out of, having accomplished the promises for that spiritual realm. I have not done, I am just doing this a church at a time, I am not way ahead of you, but I just glanced through the other churches and it appears to me that Ephesus is ultimate end of it all, and we know that in Scripture God starts with the last and ends with the first.
The condition of Ephesus, they are going to end with the fullness of God, everybody is going to reach the place in their spiritual maturation where they wind up experiencing Ephesus, and the result of that experience will be the fullness of God in you, Jesus Christ in you the hope of glory. Glory to God. May you all be blessed, and may these promises be birthed in you and come forth in you, and may God indeed be glorified in you. Hallelujah.
COMMENT: Number 4 is the same for both of them right?
PASTOR VITALE: No, for the church of Ephesus is the fullness of God, and for the church of Smyrna, it is that you come to the place where you are at the beginning of the church of Ephesus experience, where Christ is walking in the midst of the candlestick, because you may recall with the church of Smyrna, what the Lord is doing is that He is revealing Himself to them, He is saying, I am alive, I am alive, and the end of the process is that He is walking in the midst of them.
COMMENT: On Smyrna, you said they had 2 different kinds of tribulation, one was judgment and one was testing, but then up there you said they did not have any judgment.
PASTOR VITALE: The first one was a description of Jesus, He was actively manifesting in Ephesus and not manifesting in Smyrna, #2 is relationship to tribulation in the case of Ephesus, they had, they were involved in the tribulation, that glorified God, and in the case of Smyna, they had 2 kinds of tribulation, both reaping what they sowed, judgment, and also tribulation that would produce a manifestation of Christ. Then the next thing we discussed was the degree of spirituality in Ephesus, was spiritual, they had discernment, judgment, and righteousness, and Smyrna was carnal. The next thing that we had was what Jesus had against the church, which I put down here, which is Jesus had against the church, they had pride and they were carnal. #4, what Jesus has against the church, and in the case of Ephesus, I am going to make it real simple, it was pride, it was pride, we have already discussed it on the tape, what He had against them was pride, and what He had against Smyrna, was that the they say they are Jews but they are not, and what that means is that they, in their words, in their thoughts and their deeds, they were revealing Satan.
They were not only revealing Satan, but they believed it was God. They were revealing Satan as god, he was sitting in the temple of their minds and he was god of their minds, and they were calling him Christ. That is what He had against Smyrna, they were a carnal church, they did not even know that they were manifesting, and #5, is the judgment for not heeding the warning, and the judgment to Ephesus is loss of spiritual exaltation, loss of spiritual exaltation, and with regard to Smyrna, there is no judgment, there is nothing that could be lost, because every single one of them is coming, no man could say no, no man could say no.
Did I make that clear? That is real interesting, when you are a baby, you cannot say no you do not want to go to school, you cannot say no you do not want to go the dentist, but when you move into being a spiritual being, God will let your pride knock you down. Do you hear that? Do you hear that? You are supposed to know better. The last category, #6, is to he that overcometh, it is the fullness to the church of Ephesus, and to the church of Smyrna, they are going to receive spiritual power. Is that clear?
He that overcometh in Ephesus they get the fullness of the spirit, and the church at Smyrna, receive spiritual power and for all intents and purposes, they are right up here at the beginning of the church of Ephesus experience. We are moving from spiritual realm to spiritual realm, and the ultimate end of the whole experience is the fullness of Christ which is Christ in you the hope of glory and your personality as you know it today shall be totally destroyed. That is hard word, it is the word that God has given this ministry. Only Christ shall be seen in you. Any other questions?
COMMENT: #5 under Smyrna was what?
PASTOR VITALE: #5 under Smyrna was spiritual power, spiritual. To he that overcometh, the church of Smyrna experience, he is going to get spiritual power. Spiritual power is #6, let me go through this again, we will do it again. The #1 on Smyrna is the description of Jesus, without spiritual power, He is not manifesting in them. #2 is 2 tribulations, #3 is they are carnal, #4 is what He has against them, is they are revealing Satan as god, and the warning, that is what I left out, the warning is, do not be afraid, draw near to God, until you die. The warning is do not be afraid, it is just a loving warning, do not be afraid, draw near to God, do not be afraid, draw near to God. That is what you say to a child, so it is obvious that He is dealing differently with the spiritual children than with the spiritual adults. If you are a spiritual adult and you have tasted of the good things of God, and the power of the age to come, and you do not get on top of that pride and at least say, God I know it is there, have mercy on me, brethren you are coming down, they are falling like flies. Any more questions? One more? Praise the Lord.
COMMENT: When you were talking about credit, and you said it is illegal to have credit, literally?
PASTOR VITALE: Well the Bible says that, my personal feeling is, that credit, well this is not, the Bible says credit is against that law of God, but we live in this crazy society, and my personal feeling that it is just realistic to tell somebody not to take out a mortgage on a home, or not to take out a car loan, but the law of the God says, that you are to owe no man anything, and that credit is illegal. You have to seek God for yourself on this, but I personally can sanction having a mortgage on a house and a car payment, but beyond that credit is illegal, yes it is.
COMMENT: I kept buying old cars, and they were breaking down and breaking down, and finally I went into debt and got a new car, and now it does not break down so much you know, but I believe that, I figured, Well God could give me the whole lump sum so I do not have to go into debt, you know.
PASTOR VITALE: Well I have no explanation for you, but that is where I am in this hour, those are the only 2 debts that I find legitimate, but now let us not make a law out of this, you know, if you are a desperate person and God tells you to borrow money, the law of the Spirit of God is greater than the law that is in the book. They are supposed to coincide, but if you have an unusual circumstance and you believe if you pray about it, that, that is what God told you to do, do not starve to death, please go out and borrow the money, if that is what He tells you to do, but ideally He is bringing us to a place in our lives where that should not be necessary. Ultimately when our life, is your life all straightened out, I am not all straight, we are all messed up in one way or another, everybody is messed up, so if you have a problem in your life, it might take God ten years to straighten you out, in financial problems or whatever the area is, and during that ten years you very well might be breaking the law, and He might be saying, Go ahead do it, because that is the path that you have to take to get to the place where you are going to be able to keep my law.
People are killed by religious people that will go up to them and say, You cannot do this, starve to death, die, go into destruction, go into ruin, but do not break that law that is written in the Bible. That is a religious spirit brethren. We are all in trouble, we are all trying to get out of trouble and whatever your problem area is, and while you are on that journey that is going to result in your having everything right and doing everything right, God very well might say to you, well you are not out of trouble yet, and this is what you do in this circumstance and yes, it is contradicting the written word.
You have got to get it from God, and we have to a spiritual people, the letter killeth. There are people in the church world today telling divorced people that they cannot remarry, telling them, you know, someone telling them to go back to their husbands. I have heard preachers counsel people who have been divorced and have remarried whose mate is remarried and they both have children in their new marriage, to divorce their new mate, to go back and marry their first mate. Give me a break!!
COMMENT: A lady that I work with, she became a born again Christian, and she was telling everybody it was wrong, that they should be with their mate. In order for her to go back to her mate, she told him a lie, that she had come into a lot of money, and it came back to her, and it ended up in a disaster, because she thought it was so important that she thought she was in sin if she was not with him.
PASTOR VITALE: God help us, God help us! I am telling you, there is insanity in the church world today, there is insanity in the church world today. God have mercy on us, I am going to just leave you with this word, the law of God is higher than the letter of the law, the letter of the law is true, but when it ministered in the wrong spirit, it will kill you. Have mercy brethren, have mercy. Glory to God.