© 2023 Warren L. Johns. All Rights Reserved.
“And there was war in heaven.
Michael and His angels fought against the dragon,
and the dragon and his angels fought back.”
“And there was war in heaven. Michael and His angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough and they lost their place in heaven. That great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray.” 1
Lucifer, the “light bearer,” a created angel, overcome by pride and jealousy, wanted to be God. He accused God, falsely, claiming Him to be an unjust tyrant. Almighty God of the universe, could have destroyed him and his angel followers immediately but had he done so, it could appear to all others in the cosmos that Lucifer’s lying accusations might be true.
God wanted the angels and all other beings in the cosmos, to be free moral agents and to worship Him from love, not as automatons, from fear. There was no choice but to banish the rebels from heaven and isolate them to enable the evil consequences of the rebellion to play out for all to see. Lucifer and his rebel force were confined to Earth, now the theater of the Cosmos, the showcase for evil.
The pristine beauty of life, thriving in a perfectly balanced ecology, had been designed and created at the command of God, in a literal week of seven days. It was here that the architect of death ran rampant, “like a roaring lion,” seeking to destroy God’s handiwork.
Adam and Eve, created in God’s own image, endowed with the moral power of free choice, became Satan’s prime targets. Using dazzling deception, the first couple fell for the con job and bit into the forbidden fruit. At that instant, the curtain rose on the drama of the ages. Adam and Eve unintentionally emerged in starring roles.
Once unleashed by the sin virus, the death spiral infected all life on the little “blue dot” planet. The war between good and evil would play out through the disastrous last act when the love and justice of God would be vindicated and Satan’s deceit exposed.
The Divine source of life’s origin emerged as the anchor issue. The Genesis account describes a blob of water-covered matter, floating in cosmic darkness transformed into Planet Earth, throbbing with life, at the command of God. As a weekly reminder of His love, justice, and pre-eminent power, the Creator inaugurated the Sabbath on the seventh day of creation week. Humans were guaranteed a weekly rest from physical labor and the opportunity to worship, honor and communicate with God, the Creator of life.
Satan, father of jealousy, hatred, and death, resorted to entice human minds with fake “knowledge,” suggesting life created itself, accidentally, from non-living matter. The Sabbath, sanctified by God and incorporated as a centerpiece of His ten commandments, stood as a forever bulwark, exposing Satan’s insidious evil designs, as long as preserved and respected by humans. Consequently, the arch-deceiver attacks the Sabbath by every subtle, diversionary means conceivable: influencing cultures to ignore the Sabbath completely; exploiting religious systems to not only change the day of observance, and even using science to deny the existence of a creator on the fabricated theory that life created itself and then evolved into all species of plants and animals over mega millions of years.
Before there were brand-name churches or mankind struggling for survival under Satan’s brutal intrusion, the seventh day Sabbath, put in place and sanctified by God, crowned creation week. “And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had made: and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.” 2
When God inspired Moses to free His “chosen” people from Egyptian slavery, He delivered His ten commandments, carved in tables of stone. Beyond reflecting God’s character of love and justice, it summarized mankind’s duty to God and other humans. The Sabbath commandment stood tall at the center reminding the multitude of former slaves that all-powerful, Almighty God had created all life; delivered them from physical slavery; and carried the promise of freeing all who worshiped Him and obeyed His commandments freedom from sin’s shackles.
“Remember that keep the Sabbath, Six days shalt thou labour and shalt do all thy works. But on the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: thou shalt do no work on it, thou nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy beasts, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates. For in six days, the Lord made heaven and earth, and the seas, and all things that are in them, and rested on the seventh day: therefore the Lord blessed the seventh day and sanctified it.” 3
Jesus not only worshiped on the seventh day Sabbath, “as was His custom,” but emphasized the perpetuity of the ten-commandment Law.
“I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, or the least stroke of a pen, by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever preaches and teaches these commandments will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will not certainly enter the kingdom of heaven.” 4
Despite this unequivocal endorsement by God’s “only begotten son,” the majority of Christian churches have not only abandoned seventh-day Sabbath worship as ordained, blessed, and sanctified by the Creator, but call Sunday the Sabbath. The history of this transition has played out over many years, driven by a variety of human ideas and events.
After the global flood. Abraham, a man of stature and stalwart faith, was selected by God to be the father of a great people who were chosen preserve and preach the truth about God, the Creator, to all people of the world.. Many great, good, men and women followed, but the mission assigned the “chosen” failed.
The brilliant Moses and his slave mother Joshebed, charismatic David, courageous Daniel, Isaiah the prophet, faithful Ruth and the virgin Mary, along with many others, stood tall and loyal to their Creator and obedient to His ten rules for better living.
But as a nation, founded and organized by God, its collective faith veered off course and its religious practices eroded into a ritualized “form of godliness denying the power thereof.” Under the rule of King Ahab, men of god like Elijah feared for their lives.
As a result, prophecies of a coming Messiah were misconstrued. The “chosen” expected a leader who would deliver them from political oppression rather than a spiritual power who would open heaven’s gates to an eternal kingdom. Not only did religious leaders reject the promised Messiah, but plotted his death.
Front and center in the pursuit and killing of Christians stood Saul of Tarsus, a devout Jew of Roman citizenship. He stood by, holding the cloaks of those stoning Steven.
Intent on tracking down and arresting followers of “The Way,” his life changed forever on the outskirts of Damascus. Stopped in his tracks by Christ Himself, Saul reversed course and devoted the rest of his life to sharing the gospel with the gentiles. He carried his new, born-again ID as Pau, the Apostle, champion of Christianity.
Ever since “chosen” religious leadership rejected the Messiah, Jewish culture has endured discrimination, contempt and even the mass murder of the Holocaust. Born-again Christians believe all humans are created by God and do not discriminate against any other race, color or creed. They recognize the devout Abraham was a direct ancestor of Jesus’ honored mother May.
Christians also treasure the Old Testament that tells the story of creation; introduces the miracle workings of God on Planet Earth since the beginning of time; and set the theological and historical stage for the coming of Jesus, God’s “only begotten Son” to make eternal life available to all who “obey God’s commandments and remain faithful to Jesus.” The promises are there in the Old Testament.
Acts 8 describes an angel arranged encounter between the Apostle Phillip and the CFO of Ethiopia. Philip found the Ethiopian executive puzzled after reading the writings of the prophet Isiah. Philip explained the prophecy pointed to the good news of the Messiah having been fulfilled in the life, ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus.
The honest hearted Ethiopian asked to be baptized and Philip obliged. This conversion took place three centuries before the Old and New Testaments had been correlated.
Augustine (Aurelius Augustinus), 354-430, Bishop of Hippo, converted to the Christian faith, answering the prayers of his devout mother, played a pivotal role in merging the Old and New Testaments into today’s Holy Bible.
Aided by the translating skills of Jerome, a scholar fluent in Greek(384), Augustine is believed to have been instrumental in the formal ratification of the Scriptural canon by the Synod of Hippo, 393.
Holy Bible, Revelation 12:7-10
Holy Bible, Douay-Rheims Version, Genesis 2:2.
Holy Bible, Douay-Rheims Version, Exodus 20:8-11
Holy Bible, Mathew 5:1