Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 3 * PART 4 * BOOK 57
1 John 5:1-7 – Part 2
Okay, now normally we don’t promote products. I did it once or twice before several months ago, but our book “Questions and Answers,” consists of eighty-eight questions – and the answers have been compiled by a gentleman out in Indiana using our past program materials. And it has just gone over tremendously with our television audience. We’ve sold thousands already. But the reason we wanted to remind people it’s available, is it will be in the bookstores. Christian bookstores are going to be selling it, and it’s a way we can reach people that are not in areas where we’re on television.
Okay, let’s continue on now for the rest of the afternoon where we were in I John chapter 5, and this half-hour I want to address the Triune God. As I mentioned in the last program we get so many questions in various concepts of the Trinity. “Was Jesus a part of the Trinity?” “Was He God?” “Was the Holy Spirit, God?” “Are they all equal?” “What about the Trinity?” So we’re going to take a look at that for this half-hour but let’s start off with I John chapter 5 verse 7.
I John 5:7
“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, (which according to John’s Gospel is God the Son) and the Holy Ghost: (Spirit) and these three are one.”Now, if you have a margin in your Bible, it will tell you that there are a lot of the ancient manuscripts that do not have this verse and so that raises a little bit of suspicion about the validity of it. But, nevertheless, it’s an appropriate subject. Is the Triune God what we claim it is and how can we show it from Scripture that we have all three as God.
Now the best place to start of course is Genesis, chapter 1. There are those today who are promoting the concept that the Holy Spirit is not a Person, and that He’s not a part of the Godhead. Well, I beg to differ. The Holy Spirit has been with our Bible from chapter 1 of Genesis, starting at verse 1.
“In the beginning (whenever it was) God created the heaven and the earth.”
Whenever I teach this verse, I always say, “Nobody knows when it was.” What difference does it make whether it was 6,000 years or 6,000,000 – that doesn’t make any difference to me. All the Bible says is that “In the beginning God….” The Triune God, that’s the word Elohim in the Hebrew and Elohim is a plural word. All right, so, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” Verse 2.
“And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. (In other words, it was covered with water. And now look at the last part of the verse) And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”
That’s the Holy Spirit and so He was already there at Creation. Now we’ve studied other verses where it shows so plainly that God the Son called it into being, but nevertheless, I wanted to establish first right here in Genesis that the Holy Spirit was a Person of the Godhead. He is One of the Three.
All right, now let’s come all the way up to Exodus chapter 3. Now there again, have you ever noticed in Scripture how often the number 3 pops up? All the way through Scripture and even in life, even in our secular world. Three is a pretty common number. The whole game of baseball is based on what? Three strikes. Three outs. See? And many things. My wife is a nurse, especially when she was in a hospital that had a large maternity business, over and over, how many babies came at a time? In groups of three. It was just amazing how many times she’d come home and she said, “Well same thing, we had three babies in the last twenty-four hours!”
Well, it’s just one of those sidekicks, you know, that three is an intrinsic number. The very form of water is made up of 2 molecules of hydrogen and 1 molecule of oxygen. And a chicken egg – the shell, the yolk, the white. And I could just go on and on how many times three is an intrinsic number in Scripture and I think it all comes from the Triune God. I really do think there’s a connection.
All right, so now then in Exodus chapter 3, same way with Scripture in the Bible, that’s what made me think of it. Exodus chapter 3, Romans chapter 3, Ephesians chapter 3, those are all tremendous chapters. All right, now in Exodus chapter 3, then, we have Moses approaching the burning bush. And I think we may have looked at this in a previous program. And here he’s been on the backside of the desert now for almost forty years, herding sheep. And then one day he notices a bush on fire but it’s not burning, it’s not being consumed. And so he steps aside as he approaches that burning bush, because the Voice says:
“…Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. (here it comes) 6. Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. 7. And the (what’s the word?) LORD (see? Now we’ve skipped from God to LORD just in a matter of a period) said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt,….”
And then you come all the way down through this to verse 12 or even verse 10, and we come back to the word “God.” Well, was this just haphazard writing? No. This is to show us that these Persons of the Godhead are synonymous and yet they’re acting as One; they’re separate personalities, and this particular One is going to be God the Son. Now we saw in Genesis chapter 1, God the Holy Spirit moving on the face of the deep. But here we’re dealing with God the Son. All right, come all the way down to verse 13.
“And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? (and how does God answer?) 14. And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. 15. And God said.…” That same personality in the burning bush, He’s God, He’s LORD, He’s I AM, all three.
All right, now then, let’s go all the way up to John’s Gospel, chapter 8 – you know where we’re going to go next. We’ve done it before and we’ll probably do it again. Here we have the earthly ministry. God the Son has taken on human flesh as we saw in the last program – in the fullness of time, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, made under the Law to fulfill the Old Testament promises of being the Messiah and the King of Israel.
All right, so now we’re in that earthly ministry when He’s presenting Himself to the nation as their promised Messiah, and especially the Pharisees, in their unbelief, did everything they could to snub Him, to try to embarrass Him. So let’s just drop in at verse 52.
“Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. 53. Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?”
All right then come on down to verse 56, just for sake of time, and Jesus responds with:
“Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.” In other words, Abraham had an understanding, through faith, that this Son of God would one day be the Messiah and King and Redeemer of Israel. Now he certainly didn’t understand all the ramifications of the work of the cross; he couldn’t have. But he did understand that through the promises of these covenants, that out of him, would come a nation of people which would bring about this Messiah, the Son of God.
“Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, (well, of course not, He was only about thirty) and hast thou seen Abraham? (2,000 years ago?) 58. Jesus said unto them,.…”
Now here it comes. Remember what Exodus 3 said, “when the children of Israel ask my name, you tell them I AM hath sent me unto you.” All right, now here’s the answer to Who is the I AM? It’s God the Son. It’s Jesus of Nazareth as we know Him in the New Testament.
“Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” He was the pre-eternal, pre-existent Son of God, right along with the Holy Spirit – and now we’ve got the third One, which One? The Father. All right, now let’s chase down a few verses on the Father. Come all the way back with me again to the Old Testament. Isaiah chapter 9, and we’ll drop in at verse 6. Now remember Isaiah was a Jewish prophet writing to the Nation of Israel, so the ‘us’ pertains to Israel.
“For unto us (the Nation of Israel) a child is born, (now this, of course, is prophecy leaping over to Bethlehem) unto us a son is given:.…” Now I tie that in with John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that (He what?) He gave….” Primarily to the Nation of Israel, in His earthly ministry. All right, and so He gave to the Nation of Israel Jesus the Christ, the Redeemer, the Messiah, the Son of God.
“…and the government (of this royal family and this King and the Kingdom over Israel,) shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called.…” Now here comes what was so intrinsic to Israel’s belief system – the name…and his name – when He’s King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and has set up His Kingdom and He’s ruling from Jerusalem.
“…his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The (what?) mighty God, (The Mighty Elohim!) The everlasting (what?) Father,.…” All names of Deity but it’s going to be epitomized in God the Son, the King. Now you know the Middle East is all ablaze with talk of peace. Oh, how they want peace. And I don’t blame them. Wouldn’t it be great, if both sides could go to bed some night and not have to worry about getting blown to bits.
But I don’t think it’s going to happen. I just don’t think they’re ever going to get any kind of peace in Jerusalem or the area of Palestine until the “false christ,” the anti-christ will come up with a short term pseudo-peace. And that, of course, will be after we’re gone in the Rapture, so we won’t see any of that anyway.
But, that’s the only peace that I can see coming to the Middle East and it’s only going to last 3 1/2 years. And then after the 3 1/2 years, again (excuse the expression), hell on earth will break loose. And it will bring in those final 3 1/2 years of wrath and vexation. And then when Christ returns and sets up His Kingdom, the Middle East and the world in general will finally have peace. Because that’s going to be the whole hallmark of that Kingdom. It’s Heaven on earth. It’s going to be peace on earth. But not until.
“Of the increase of his government (over this glorious Kingdom) and peace there shall be no end, (He’s going to rule from) upon the throne of David,.…” Which of course was on Mount Zion in Jerusalem. Now you remember a program or two back, we were in Zechariah and the Gentiles said to the Jew, “We will go with you, for we have heard that God is with you. (Where?) In Jerusalem.” This is all tied together.
“…and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of the hosts will perform this.”
All right, now let’s just go ahead a chapter or two to chapter 11 and see again how the other Person of the Trinity is also going to be involved in this Glorious Kingdom, and that’ll be the Holy Spirit. Isaiah 11 now, we might as well start at verse 1.
“And there shall come forth (hasn’t come yet when Isaiah writes, but it’s in the future, prophecy.) a rod out of the stem of Jesse, (Jesse you remember was the father of King David, that royal family) and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:” (that’s God the Son.) A Branch. Capitalized. It’s another one of the terms for Christ in the Old Testament Now look at verse 2.
“And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him,.…” In other words not only will He be the visible, physical King and ruler of Israel, but He will also have what? The Holy Spirit and all the seven attributes of the Spirit will be on this Branch, or God the Son.
“…the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;”
All right, now then as you come up through the Old Testament and we go on into the New again, I suppose I should stop a second and finish what I didn’t finish in the last program, which I wanted to do right up front. But we can do that in here because I’m going to be working up to Christ’s baptism anyway. Come up here to the New Testament now, and go over the Luke chapter 3. I should have done it at the beginning of the program. Just shows how human I am. Forgot all about it. I just happened to think I put this on the board during the break time that here we have David. Back in II Samuel is promised that out of him will come a royal family, a “house” and that’s why we call it the House of David.
Now at the end of our last half-hour we went to Matthew and we noticed that that genealogy coming out of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, jumping up to David and then following it on down in Matthew, that genealogy follows Solomon. And Solomon’s genealogy takes us down to Joseph, who is the ‘legal’ father of Jesus of Nazareth. Not the physical. The legal.
All right, then let’s go then, if you will, to Luke chapter 3 and we’re going to look at the physical side. And you remember I was tying it with blood and water. The side in Matthew is from the male side, this is the blood side, this is His Deity. Now we’re going to flip over to His humanity. His physical side. Luke chapter 3, starting at verse 23
“And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,” Now just to show you that this is a different family tree, I want you to come down to verse 31.
“…which was the son of Nathan, which was the son of David,” Now you’ve got to remember this genealogy is going from Christ back. Now we’re coming all the way down through the time of Jesus, through the Kings of Israel, all the way back now to David. But before we get to David, who do you see? Nathan. That’s why I’ve got these two sons up here. Solomon, and these are both sons of Bathsheba remember. Solomon is in the lineage of Joseph and that genealogy only goes back to Abraham, when we have the beginning of the concept of the Nation of Israel and this spiritual King and Kingdom that’s coming on the earth. Now we’re over with Mary’s genealogy and it’s the physical. The flesh. The water. All right now, Nathan:
“…which was the son of David, 32. Which was the son of Jesse,.…” And you keep going back and back and back. Now you come all the way down to verse 37, we’re at Methuselah. All the way back in the genealogies.
“Which was the son of Mathusala, which was the son of Enoch, which was the son of Jared, which was the son of Maleleel, which was the son of Cainan, 38. Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, (and don’t forget Seth took the place of Abel) which was the son of Adam,….” (who came from God.)
All right, now do you see the difference in those two genealogies. The one only goes back to Abraham because that’s the beginning of the promises made to Israel concerning a King and the Kingdom. That’s His Deity side. Over here we go all the way back down through Nathan, but we go all the way to Adam. That’s His physical side. Born of the woman. Flesh. And so that’s why I can sit here and proclaim without apology that He was the “God – Man.” Born of water in the physical element but born of blood by virtue of His birth from God Himself.
Now I want to come back, and again looking at the three Persons of the Godhead, and we’ll go all the way up to Jesus’ baptism. Matthew chapter 3 and anytime somebody asks you to prove from Scripture that we have three Persons of the Godhead, this is one good place to start, here at Jesus’ baptism. Verse 15.
“And Jesus answering said unto him, (that is unto John the Baptist) Suffer (permit) it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness….” In other words, the whole program of God had to be consummated here with Christ’s earthly ministry that was just beginning. So John permitted him. Now here’s what I want you to see, verse 16.
“And Jesus, (Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of Mary, the legal Son of Joseph, out of the line of David) when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the (what?) Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:” The same Spirit we saw in the Old Testament moving upon the face of the waters in Genesis 1, the same Spirit that comes upon the Branch in Isaiah chapter 11. The same Spirit of God that now makes His appearance “descending” on God the Son in the form of a “dove and lighting upon him.” And then here comes the third Person of the Triune God.
“And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
Now there you’ve got all three Persons of the Triune God. All right now I’m going to give us one more before we run out of time. Now we’re going to come into Paul. And come all the way up to Ephesians, chapter 5, and we certainly know with all the reference that Paul makes to the Holy Spirit that He is a Person of the Godhead according to Paul’s writings. But now these are two terms that I like to tie together as well and we’re going to have to wind it down.
“Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;” Now there you have the Father and the Son. You have the Spirit evident throughout the rest of Paul’s epistles. And so without apology we can claim a Triune Godhead.