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Peace and grace in the love of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Revelation 13:13-15

13:13. He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men.
13:14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived.
13:15 He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed.

Verse 11-18 = the beast coming out of the earth or the false prophets.
Verse 11-12 = the appearance of the false prophet, namely the false teachings causing the hypocrisy.
Verse 13-15 = the signs of the false prophets. The false prophets perform the great signs until making the fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. It is the same as the demonstration of the power with the great physical signs such as healing the sick, making the poor rich, and so on until making the fire of disobedience come down, but without the spiritual sign and purpose.

What do they make the fire come down from heaven on the earth for?

  1. Matching the fire of God, namely the fire of the Word, Holy Spirit, and God's love as well as hindering the church not to experience the work of the fire of the Word, Holy Spirit, and God's love and not to be the same as Jesus.

  2. Deceiving the church to be the same as the Antichrist.

The consequence is experiencing the fire of judgment, the doomsday, and everlasting perdition in the hell.

The eyes' being set only on the physical signs in following and serving to God, one will be influenced by the great signs and fire from heaven of the false prophets. The consequences are as follows:

  1. Not experiencing the fire of God, but the one of temptation from Satan.
    There is the fire of temptation behind the miracles of Satan for directing men to the worship to the Antichrist.

  2. Experiencing the fire of judgment up to the everlasting perdition for sure.

Once again, be careful! There is temptation behind the miracles of the false prophets.

Matthew 4:1-11 is about the temptation at the wilderness.
Matthew 4:1-2
4:1.Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
4:2 And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry.

It is the same as the temptation in the world which is the same as the dry wilderness.

Jesus fasted forty days and forty nights by the guidance of Holy Spirit. We must not fast because of the flesh, but by the guidance of Holy Spirit.

The proof of fasting by the guidance of Holy Spirit is thinking about the number forty, namely the full tearing of the flesh until it does not speak anymore.

Why did Jesus have to fast?

  1. For experiencing the full tearing of the flesh until it did not speak anymore. The results were as follows:

    • Jesus kept on being in the plan and will of God, namely the plan of salvation up to the perfection and we or the fleshly men will also be glorified with Him.
    • Experiencing the victory over the fire of temptation from Satan, who wanted to make the plan and will of God failed.

  2. For giving us the example of the fasting, especially in the spiritual meaning, not about the numbers of the days.
    It means that we struggle with Jesus for experiencing the full tearing of the flesh and having the victory over the fire of temptation from Satan, so we can keep on staying in the plan and will of God, namely the salvation up to the perfection.

There are three kinds of the fire of temptation of Satan in the wilderness of the world as follows:

  1. The temptation about the stones to become bread. It refers to the daily life, economy, food, and so on.
    Matthew 4:3-4
    4:3.Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread."
    4:4 But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'"

    Satan wants to make the plan of God failed.
    The plan of God is to make the stones or the Gentiles become bread or the sons of Abraham or the salvation of the spiritual Israel.

    Matthew 3:7-9
    3:7.But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, "Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
    3:8 "Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance,
    3:9 "and do not think to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I say to you that
    God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones.

    The process of the stones' becoming the sons of Abraham is as follows:

    • Believing Jesus and repenting or stopping sinning to return to God.
      The proof of having faith is not committing any sin because faith is the brake to make us not commit any sin.

      1 Peter 2:1
      2:1.Therefore, laying aside all malice(1), all deceit(2), hypocrisy(3), envy(4), and all evil speaking(5),

      The Gentiles are redeemed by the fifth wound of Jesus, namely in His side. Therefore, we repent through throwing away the five main sins.
      If the Gentiles keep the five sins, they will keep on being the hard stones, so they perish and drown in the fire of the hell.
      This is the greatest temptation which the Gentiles face.

    • The water baptism.
      Matthew 3:7,11
      3:7.But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, "Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
      3:11 "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.

      The natives of Israel came for being baptized, but they kept the false teachings, namely the teaching of Sadducees that did not believe about resurrection and the teaching of Pharisees that allowed the divorce-remarrying. Keeping the false teachings, one cannot repent, but he keeps the five main sins.

      The water baptism must be true, namely being according to the Word and being dead to sin or we are baptized like Jesus.

      God turned to the stones or the Gentiles because the water baptism of Israel was not true.
      The true water baptism means that one who has believed Jesus and repented or died to sin must be buried in water with Jesus and raised from water with Him to get the new life or the heavenly one. We become the same as the newborn baby, namely living in the anointing and being baptized of Holy Spirit. We live in the anointing of Holy Spirit, not in the flesh anymore.

      Living in the anointing of Holy Spirit means as follows:

      1. We live in righteousness. We are saved and blessed.
      2. We always long for the pure spiritual milk or the shepherding Word.
        1 Peter 2:2
        2:2.as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby,

        It refers to the true teaching Word which God has entrusted to a pastor that he can deliver to the congregation faithfully, continually, and repetitively for being the spiritual food for them.

        The true teaching Word comes out of God's mouth through a verse that explains other verses in the Bible.
        We long for the shepherding Word more than anything in the world.

        Living in the righteousness is the same as living in faith. We rely on the Word.

    The result is 'I shall not want' or we are preserved and perfected.

    The number forty also refers to the forty years of Jubilee or the two thousand years of the last age.
    On the last age, Satan makes the situation of the world the same as the wilderness, namely there are stones only. The condioin becomes difficult and impossible for earning a living. Satan plays in this situation.

    If Jesus had changed the stones into bread physically, He would not have become the Son of God, the plan of God would have been failed, and all of us should have perished forever.

    Jesus willingly got hungry and dead on the cross so that He was acknowledged as the Son of God for fulfilling His plan and will.

    Therefore, we must be careful after being the sons of Abraham. There are Abaraham's sons who are like the dust and sand, namely the hard-hearted who do not want to repent, but follow and minister to Jesus only to look for the physical bread until they lose the salvation.

    Do not become one who does not repent, but loses the salvation only because of food.

    Let us become the newborn baby and we will get the miracle. Let us appreciate the shepherding Word and keep on living in faith.

    Matthew 21:15-16

    21:15.But when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that He did, and the children crying out in the temple and saying, "Hosanna to the Son of David!" they were indignant
    21:16 and said to Him, "Do You hear what these are saying?" And Jesus said to them, "Yes. Have you never read, '
    Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infantsYou have perfected praise'?"

    The baby can cry to God. If we appreciate the words of God, He will appreciate our words. He answers our prayer, so miracles happen. The sick can be healed and so on.

    The physical bread is truly soft and delicious. It means that the bread of the trickery of Satan is truly soft and delicious.
    Likewise, the servant of God often supposes that the congregation is like the soft and delicious bread. It means that he does not think about the salvation of the congregation, but getting money only.
    Many servants of God and congregation are deceived. The bread of trickery is soft, but actually one is eating the stone. Such life becomes hard-hearted more until he cannot repent, but perishes forever.

    Proverbs 20:17
    20:17.Bread gained by deceitis sweet to a man, But afterward his mouth will be filled with gravel.

    Deuteronomy 8:3
    8:3."So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD.

    God allows us to be hungry and suffered to make us rely in the Word coming out of His mouth more. It can give us help up to the eternal life. Let us keep on being shepherded seriously.

  2. The temptation about the temple. It refers to the service and ministry to God.
    Matthew 4:5-7
    4:5.Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple,
    4:6 and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God,
    throw Yourself down. For it is written: 'He shall give His angels charge over you,' and, 'In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.'"
    4:7 Jesus said to him, "It is written again, 'You shall not tempt the LORD your God.'"

    Ephesians 4:8-9
    4:8.Therefore He says: "When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men."
    4:9 (Now this, "He ascended" --what does it mean but that He also first
    descended into the lower parts of the earth?

    The plan of God is that Jesus must descend into the lower parts of the earth, but not as a demonstration like what Satan commands.
    Jesus descends into the lower parts of the earth. It means being dead on the cross for delivering men from the captivity of the death or sin as well as appointing us as priests and kings.

    Revelation 1:5-6
    1:5.and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood,
    1:6 and has made us
    kingsand prieststo His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

    The hard stones are appointed as the sons of God as well as the living stones.

    1 Peter 2:5

    2:5.you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

    The living stones mean the priests and kings who are used in the edification of the perfect body of Christ. It begins from the marriage, shepherding, fellowship, up to the perfect body of Christ.

    Not being used by God, one who has been righteous, saved, and blessed will be used by Satan.

    The living stones are the same as the beautiful ones. It means that the beauty of our life is when we serve and minister to God. The life will not be beautiful if one does not serve and minister to God, but becomes like the paralytic. It means that many things are not right in life and there is uncleanness.

    The requirements of ministering to God are as follows:

    • Living in holiness.
      Exodus 29:1a
      29:1a."And this is what you shall do to them to hallow themfor ministering to Me as priests:

      How can we live in holiness?

      1. There must be the shepherding Word that sanctifies our sins, so our heart, deeds, and words are holy.
      2. Hearing and obeying the shepherding Word.
      3. Persevering in the sheepfold.
        Leviticus 21:12
        21:12.'nor shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God; for the consecration of the anointing oil of his God is upon him: I am the LORD.

        The flesh is repressed in the sheepfold, so we do not transgress the holiness.

    • There is anointing oil on the headso that our mind and sight are set oly upon Jesus as the High priest who sits at the rightside of the throne of Father God.
      It means being faithful and fervent in spirit in serving and ministering to God.

    After being holy and faithful, we must be careful because Satan attacks with the fire of temptation to the priests and kings for making the plan of God failed through the stumbling-block.

    Matthew 4:6
    4:6 and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written: 'He shall give His angels charge over you,' and, 'In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.'"

    There are stumbling-blocks from outside and inside or the greatest one, namely the hard heart.
    For example, Judas Iscariot kept the evil lust or the one of money. Having the evil lust, there must be the uncleanness and bitterness.
    Such things make unfaithfulness and unholiness.
    The stumbling-block can also happen in the blessings which are misused.

    The consequence of the unfaithfulness and unholiness is dismissing one's own life, not being dismissed by others, like Judas who hung himself. It means losing the ministry, although formerly the life was like the beautiful stone.

    Therefore, we must be shepherded well and correctly so that we can keep and increase the holiness and faithfulness. We become the apple of God's eyes and will be given the two wings of a great eagle.

    Deuteronomy 32:10
    32:10. "He found him in a desert land And in the wasteland, a howling wilderness; He encircled him, He instructed him, He kept him as the apple of His eye.

    We must be the apple of God's eyes for being able to live in the wilderness of the world which is dry and full of difficulties. There is no other way!
    As the apple pof God's eyes, we will experience His guarantee from now on up to the time when the Antichrist reigns over the world.

  3. The temptation about being a king.
    Matthew 4:8-11
    4:8.Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.
    4:9 And he said to Him, "All these things I will give You
    if You will fall down and worship me."
    4:10 Then Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.'"
    4:11 Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.

    Revelation 19:6-7
    19:6.And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, "Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!
    19:7 "Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready."

    The plan of God is that Jesus must come a second time in the glory of the King of all kings for lifting us to the glorious clouds until we enter the heavenly kingdom.

    The plan of Satan is making Jesus as the king in the world without the process of being dead and resurrected. It means making all of us perish.

    John 6:15

    6:15.Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself alone.

    If the church only looks for the physical things, Jesus will be made as the king of the world according to the plan of Satan.

    1 John 2:15-17
    2:15.Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
    2:16 For all that is in the world--
    the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life--is not of the Father but is of the world.
    2:17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

    The contents of the world are as follows:

    • The lust of the flesh or the sins concerning marrying-being given in marriage.
    • The lust of the eyes or the sins concerning eating-drinking.
    • The pride of life or the arrogance, namely relying on the worldly things more than God.

    In the Old Testament, the gravity drew Adam and Eve from garden Eden to enter the world.
    In the New Testament, the gravity wants to draw Jesus for making the plan of God failed and to draw us from the world to enter the hell forever.

    How can we face the grativity? We must worship God much more.
    Matthew 14:23-25
    14:23.And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there.
    14:24 But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary.
    14:25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea.

    Jesus commits the worship much more, so He can defeat the grativity, namely walking on the wavy sea.
    What for?

    • Lifting up the church that has been drowned. Let us worship God much more and He will lift us up from our drowning. The fall in sins will be restored, so we can live in righteousness. The economy problem is restored. The failure is made successful and beautiful in time of need.

    • Increasing in the worship prayer up to being on the mountain for experiencing the renewal of life that is the greatest miracle.
      Matthew 17:1-2
      17:1.Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves;
      17:2 and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light.

      One of the renewals on the face is in the mouth, namely the honesty and patient heart for waiting the time of God.

      We must climb the mountain. What for? We must climb the mountain for facing the mountain of temptations. God will help us to face the increasing problems. The physical miracles happen. There is nothing impossible for God.

      When Jesus comes a second time, we will be changed to be as perfect as He is and worthy for welcoming His second coming on the glorious clouds We go up to the mountain of the New Jerusalem.
      Revelation 21:9-10
      21:9.Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, "Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb's wife."
      21:10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to
      a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God,

      We become the heavenly bride who does not stumble in words. We enter the New Jerusalem and do not go out of it anymore forever.

      What do we have to do tonight? We must be honest.

      Exodus 20:25
      20:25. 'And if you make Me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of hewn stone; for if you use your tool on it, you have profaned it.

      Being honest is the same as being the jasper stone in the New Jerusalem.

      Revelation 21:11

      21:11.having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal.

      Honestly confess your condition to God! He is able to renew, help, and perfect us.

God blesses you.

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Sermon transcript from church service in Malang and Surabaya, preached by Pastor Widjaja Hendra.

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