Reading: Isaiah 14.
The dictionary defines the word rebellion as: open
resistance to authority
Open resistance to authority is a popular pastime of the human race; and, sad to say, at some time or the other we have all been rebels. We have chaffed under authority, stamped our feet, pouted, cried, thrown a tantrum, shouted and screamed to indicate that we do not wish to comply. Babies, school children, youths, men and women of all ages have, at some times in their lives, openly resisted authority. We humans just do not like being told what to do; so we resist. This means that today's sermon is for all of us; but it has a special call to all who rebel against Yahweh the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel.
1. LEVELS OF AUTHORITY
Authority: The dictionary defines 'authority' as the power or right to give orders and make others obey, or to take specific action. Authority is usually conferred upon a person by someone of higher rank; or it may be self-declared. Democratic leaders are voted into authority. There are others who simply assume high sounding titles and positions in an attempt to impress people that they have great authority. To be of any value authority must be coupled with power and proved valid by worthwhile results. In the spiritual realm authority has several levels. This Sabbath I will speak briefly on three levels of authority and various forms of rebellion against such authority.
Over and above all principalities and powers in the heavens and on earth is the Creator Yahweh ( Jehovah ) the Supreme authority in the universe. Being the Creator of all things seen and unseen He is the highest and most powerful of all authorities. Then, in ever descending steps, come other authorities; first His Son Yeshua ( Jesus ) and then via the mighty arch-angels and lesser angels right down to the most insignificant soul on earth. Though invisible to the human eye, the Almighty determines the power each level of authority possesses. No authority can over-ride His will. His is the ultimate decision as to who is promoted and who isn't, who lives and who dies, who is punished and who is pardoned. He gives and He withholds according to His own will; and no one can curb His power or over-rule His decisions.
|Eph 4:6||One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.|
|Psalm 75:6|| For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor
from the west, nor from the south.|
7: But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.
Second in command is Yahweh's only begotten Son Yeshua ( Jesus ). Though possessing infinite power - all power - the Master is still under the moral authority of his Father in heaven.
|1 Cor.15:27|| For he ( the Father ) hath put all things
under his ( the Son's ) feet. But when
he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he
is excepted, which did put all things under him.|
28: And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
|Matt.28:18|| And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All
power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. |
19: Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
|Eph 1:20|| Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from
the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,|
21: Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
22: And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church.
Next come the angels, created beings who currently have authority over mankind. They were created in a hierarchic order headed by cherubim and seraphim. Satan, whose real name is Lucifer, was an archangel with authority over millions of lesser angels. Lucifer grew tired of being under the authority of Jehovah and His Son Yeshua, so he rebelled. Symbolically described in the book of Revelation as the Dragon, Lucifer lead a third of the angel host in rebellion against the Almighty.
Rev. 12:4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of
and did cast them to the earth
Two thirds of the angel host remained loyal to the Almighty. The remaining third joined Lucifer in his rebellion. This rebel third later assumed positions of God-like authority over the heathen and have tragically misused their powers to deceive billions of souls in all countries. These angels constitute the hard core rebels which have spread chaos on earth and throughout space. See Sermon Notes Angels, Fallen Angels, Messengers of God, Angel Protection, Satan the Devil, and Satanic Attack for more details about Angels - good and evil.
Man has also been given authority, not over his fellows, but over the Almighty's creation. Man has abused his authority and virtually raped the earth, wiped out thousands of species of plants and animals and is now on the brink of self-annihilation.
|Psalm 8:4|| What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the
son of man, that thou visitest him?|
5: For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.
6: Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:
2. WHERE DID REBELLION BEGIN?
Rebellion began in the mind of Lucifer, also called Satan the Devil. He is the first - and worst - rebel. Lucifer's sin began with pride, blossomed into greed and then erupted in violence and death. Rebellion is the refusal to do what Yahweh commands. Rebellion against the Most High is sin. Rebellion begins in the mind. It is the rejection of divine authority. As we will see, the iniquity of rebellion is a spiritual malady which first started in the mind of Lucifer. Sad to say it has spread to vast areas of the universe. Earth's population is infected with rebellion. It is rampant in the human mind. It surfaces in every land and in every community; even in every home. It is a chronic spiritual malady which only God Almighty can cure. Most people are totally unaware of the fact that they are spiritual rebels.
Lucifer ( Satan ) is the leading rebel in the universe. The story of his rebellion is told in several Bible passages. Here are two.
|Isaiah 14: 12|| How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer,
son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground,
which didst weaken the nations!|
13: For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
15: Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
To hide his identity Lucifer has somehow managed to remove
the only mention of his name in Scripture from modern Bible translations.
That reference is Isaiah 14:12.
Not only has Lucifer deleted his name in these bogus Bibles, but he has now assumed the title morning star! a description Jesus uses of himself. ( Rev. 22:16 ).
The second reference concerning the Devil's rebellion is:
|Ezekiel 28:1||The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
2: Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God:
3: Behold, thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee:
4: With thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures:
5: By thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches, and thine heart is lifted up because of thy riches:
6: Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thou hast set thine heart as the heart of God;
7: Behold, therefore I will bring strangers upon thee, the terrible of the nations: and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of thy wisdom, and they shall defile thy brightness.
8: They shall bring thee down to the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are slain in the midst of the seas.
9: Wilt thou yet say before him that slayeth thee, I am God? but thou shalt be a man, and no God, in the hand of him that slayeth thee.
The Antichrist is a spirit being who is shortly to make his appearance. He is referred to as the Son of Perdition, the Destroyer, the Man of Sin, the Angel of the Bottomless Pit; the spiritual black hole from which millions of rebel angels are shortly to be released. The Antichrist is the implacable opponent of all things true. He is a rebel of mind-bending proportions.
|2 Thess.2:1|| Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of
our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2: That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
3: Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
4: Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
The House of Israel
Alas, God's chosen people, Israel, have also rebelled against Him and His law.
|Deut:9:24||Ye have been rebellious against the LORD from the day that I knew you.|
|Isa.30:8||Now go, write it before them in a table, and note
it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and
9: That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD:
10: Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:
|Isa:65:2||I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way that was not good, after their own thoughts;|
|Ezek:12:2||Son of man, thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house, which have eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not: for they are a rebellious house.|
All of us
Like the ancient Israelites, all of us - without exception - have at some time or another rebelled against God. We live in a world populated by rebels - all intent on doing as they please. Listen to that great man Daniel the prophet repenting of his own and Israel's rebellion.
|Dan.9:4|| And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession,
and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant
and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments;
5: We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments:
6: Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
7: O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee.
|Lam.1:18|| The LORD is righteous; for I have rebelled against
3. TYPES OF REBELLION
People rebel in many ways. In this Sabbath Message I'll consider the four most obvious and easily recognizable forms of rebellion. I'll begin with the least dangerous and end with the worst form of rebellion. In the soon coming spiritual election all mankind will choose between the authority of the LORD God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel and the rebel authority of Lucifer. People will then plainly reveal whether they are rebels or not. But for the present rebellion is easily detected in many actions.
Silent but visible rebellion can be expressed in dress and in hairstyles. Just observe the clothes many people wear. Outward garments make unmistakable statements about a person's mindset. Modesty is being sacrificed on every high street. Nakedness is fashionable.
Rebellious viewpoints are best expressed in the written and spoken word. Smutty jokes, dirty ditties and blasphemous language are all forms of verbal rebellion. This form of rebellion is only too apparent on T.V. and radio.
Blatant rebellion manifests itself in sinful actions. A sexual revolution with its free love, homosexuality, adultery, fornication and incest has overtaken mankind. We are living at a time identical to the days of Noah just before the world was destroyed by the flood. We are being engulfed by sexual practices which mirror the days of Lot in that evil city of Sodom; when God rained down fire and brimstone from heaven and burned the cities of the plains to ashes. Rebellion against Jehovah's law is never so blatant and blasphemous than when it concerns the sexual behaviour of the human race. Sinners now wallow in their sins and even boast about them.
|Romans 1:28||And even as they did not like to retain God in
their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do
those things which are not convenient;|
29: Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
30: Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
31: Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
32: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
Though mental rebellion is difficult to identify it is by far the most serious. Mental rebellion manifests itself in inner doubts and then in outspoken unbelief. Though invisible to the human eye, this is rebellion at its worst; because all man's words and subsequent actions follow the path set by mental rebellion and DOUBT! We see Satan sowing the seed of doubt in Eve's mind in the Garden of Eden.
|Gen:3:1||Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?|
In other words: 'Is that really what God said or meant? And are you sure He is correct? Because I know the fact is: Ye shall not surely die.' Here is Satan planting doubt in Eve's mind; and, like a deadly contraceptive, it nullified the Truth God had spoken. Eve sinned because she doubted God and believed Satan.
Doubt is the opposite of Faith.
4. ETERNAL HARVESTS
Rebellion produces a harvest, a reaction from which no one can escape without divine help. Rebels may ignore these facts; but sooner or later the harvest of rebellion will overtake them. Yahweh describes the certainty of spiritual harvests - good and bad - in these words:
5. WHAT ABOUT YOU?
Do you doubt the Almighty's Word - the Holy Bible?
Or do you have doubts and reservations about God's Promises, His Word and His Son? These are vital questions which will not go away. They must be answered - by you! I tell you, your very life depends on how you answer them. So be careful - very careful! Here is a story which is recorded in Scripture for us all to read and believe.
|Acts 8:26|| And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying,
Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from
Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.|
27: And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,
28: Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
29: Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
30: And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
31: And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
32: The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:
33: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
34: And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
35: Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
36: And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
37: And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
38: And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
39: And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.
40: But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.
Hidden in this passage is a statement of belief of utmost importance. It's found in verse 37:
And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou
And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
Most modern translations of the Bible [bracket] or omit this verse altogether! Is that not a deadly declaration of unbelief in the Holy Bible, the Bible God has miraculously preserved and used for hundreds and hundreds of years? It certainly is. Because the truth is, this verse constitutes the very heart of the Christian Gospel. All other truths stem from it or are founded on it.
Not only is Jesus Christ the Son of God; but he is the only begotten Son of God. According to the Dictionary the Greek word translated begotten is 'monogenes.' It means 'mono' ( of one and the same ) 'genes;' the genetic code that is passed from parents to children that issue from their bodies. Monogenes is only used of sons or daughters who issue from their parents bodies; children who have their parents genes. Unlike Adam who was a created son ( note the small 's' ) of God ( Luke 3:38 ) Jesus was the begotten, the only begotten, the genetic, biological SON of GOD!
This word 'begotten' is slowly being phased out of modern translations of the Bible. See NIV renderings of John1:18, 3:16 & 18, Acts 13:33, 1John 4:9 and Rev.1:5. In its place come phrases and words like one, only, unique, firstborn etc. Read the AVITW article Bible Versions where this deception is exposed for what it is, an end-time masterpiece of Satan!
Are you a rebel? That may sound like an insulting question. But it is not meant to be. Rather, it is an invitation to examine yourself to see whether you have any doubts about God, His only begotten Son Jesus and His Holy Word. Because if you do, it will not be long before you join the rebellion sweeping the earth.