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Flight REV01 - Revelation 1-11

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Considered to be one of the most powerful books in Scripture, Revelation is a direct vision from God to the apostle John. It's both a warning to the world of a coming tribulation and a source of hope for believers as we anticipate Jesus' return. The book is filled with prophecies of future judgment, but in it, we find a glimpse of heaven and the glories awaiting Jesus' bride, the church.

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8/5/2020
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Flight REV01
Revelation 1-11
Skip Heitzig
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Considered to be one of the most powerful books in Scripture, Revelation is a direct vision from God to the apostle John. It's both a warning to the world of a coming tribulation and a source of hope for believers as we anticipate Jesus' return. The book is filled with prophecies of future judgment, but in it, we find a glimpse of heaven and the glories awaiting Jesus' bride, the church.
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Bible from 30,000 Feet - 2018, The

Bible from 30,000 Feet - 2018, The

Take your knowledge of the full scope of Scripture to soaring heights with The Bible from 30,000 Feet. In this series, Skip Heitzig pilots you through all sixty-six books of the Bible, revealing major themes, principles, people, and events from Genesis to Revelation. Fasten your seatbelt and open your Bible for this sweeping panorama of Scripture that will increase your faith in God's plan for the world-and for you.

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Revelation 1-11 - The Bible from 30,000 Feet - Skip Heitzig - Flight REV01

[MUSIC PLAYING]

The Bible from 30,000 Feet, soaring through the Scripture from Genesis to Revelation.

Let's have a word of prayer. Father, we thank you for Your word and thank you, Lord, that we have been able to, over the course of time, been able to browse all 66 books to get a working knowledge of the grand themes of this book, these books, all 66, but Your book, Your revelation, the Bible.

Lord, I pray that as we go through this last book, that it would bring what the author promised it would bring, what You promised it would bring, and that is joy to our lives. In Jesus' name, amen. OK, here we go. Buckle your seat belt. We're going to move kind of fast.

Somebody once said that we should all be concerned about the future, because we're going to have to spend the rest of our lives there. And yet, I love what Abraham Lincoln said. He said, the great thing about the future is it only comes one day at a time. So we do, in this book, look to the future. It is daunting to read when we discover what the Bible predicts the future will be like.

But we are living one day at a time as we march forward to the grand event of all events, the return of Jesus Christ to take control of this crazy planet that he created and that we ruined. You are looking at the book of Revelation. It is not an allegory. It is not a fantasy. It is not poetry. It is not legendary prose. It is predictive prophecy. And as you know, I take the Bible literally, though I certainly give margin for literature that is figurative in nature but points to a reality, like the Book of Revelation does.

The book of Revelation gives more details about the end of days, the last days of human history, and on into the eternal state than any other book in the Bible. A lot of books are prophetic and feed into the Book of Revelation, like Daniel and others-- Matthew 24, the words of Jesus in the Olivet discourse. But the Book of Revelation really unpacks and reveals in detail the great tribulation period, the coming of the man of sin-- that's what Paul called the Antichrist. John called him the Antichrist.

The final conflict in the Middle East, the return of Jesus Christ, the millennial kingdom, the eternal state-- all of that is worked out in this last book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation. It is predictive prophecy. Sad to say, many people have been afraid of the Book of Revelation. Just reading through it, it's like, this is weird. This is scary. You know, stars falling from Heaven, burning up the Earth, and this many people dying. It can be freaky.

I knew people in the world, before I was saved, that used to do LSD and read the Book of Revelation. Not a good thing to do. First of all, it's just not a good thing to take LSD in general. And then to read Revelation on top of that, it's not a good way to interpret the Book of Revelation, and it could make for some very interesting and damaging results. But people are afraid, many times, because they don't get it. They don't understand it.

Now, my contention is the Book of Revelation is something you can understand, hence the book You Can Understand the Book of Revelation. And it's something God wants you to understand, because the name itself is the revelation, right? God is wanting to show you something. He's wanting to reveal something to. So it's not meant to be cryptic nor hidden. It is meant to be revealed.

But people have been afraid of it. In fact, they call it-- they call prophecy, in general-- a distraction. You shouldn't really dwell on future prophecy. It is a distraction. Well, if that is the case, God has certainly put a lot of distractions in the Bible, because 1/4 of the word of God is predictive prophecy. That's 25% is prophetic.

But people have been afraid of it. Martin Luther didn't like this book. At one point, he didn't think it was to be held as scripture. He divided all of scripture up into two categories, what he called heterolegomena and antilegomena-- that is approved authentic books and then disputed texts. Antilegomena-- disputed texts, disputed books. And he had seven books in that category, and one of them was the Book of Revelation. He didn't like it.

John Calvin didn't particularly like it. He wrote a commentary on all of the New Testament books except one. Guess which one. Book of Revelation. Now, if you don't read it literally and if you are an amillennialist-- I think I'll describe more of that next week when we're dealing with the millennial kingdom in chapter 20-- then you're probably inclined toward that way of thinking, to sort of dismiss it.

It's not for today. It's all allegorical. It's not really meant to be taken in any literal fashion at all. It doesn't mean what it says it means. It means something else. I always answer that by saying, pray tell, then tell me what it does mean. And I don't get a good answer when people say it's all allegory. They can't definitively tell me what it actually means.

But I don't think we should be afraid of it, obviously, hence the book You Can Understand the Book of Revelation, and the fact that we have taught through the Book of Revelation on several occasions. Something else-- in Calvin's day and Luther's day, the events that are written in this Book of Revelation and the scale to which they will occur in the future seemed hardly possible to ever be fulfilled. Today, we read the Book of Revelation, it seems highly probable. I mean, you read this going, I could see this happening, and I could see it actually happening in short order.

So it begins, in verse 1, the revelation of Jesus Christ. The word revelation is apokalypsus. We get the term apocalypse from it. Now, when a person thinks of an apocalypse, they think of a catastrophe. They think of total destruction. That's the dictionary meaning of the word apocalypse. If you look it up in an American or English dictionary, it's the total destruction of everything-- apocalypse.

That is not the meaning of the original Greek word apocalypse, apokalypsus. It is a word used 18 times in the New Testament, and it means to disclose or to reveal-- to disclose or to reveal. And what does it reveal? It is the revelation of Jesus Christ.

So it's like in verse 1, the author saying, ladies and gentlemen, Jesus Christ. Right up front, right off the bat, the revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants things which must shortly take place. And he sent and signified it by his angel to his servant John.

It's interesting that Martin Luther said, one of the reasons I dislike the Book of Revelation is that it does not recognize nor describe Jesus Christ. I find that an alarming statement from the lips of Martin Luther. It does not recognize Jesus Christ? Martin, man, you are so right on when it came to the reformation. You are so off base when it comes to the revelation. It's all about Jesus Christ.

Chapter 2 and 3, Jesus is seen as the master, the Lord, presiding over his church. Chapter 4 and 5, he's the glorified lamb of God in the courts of Heaven being worshipped by the throngs in Heaven. Chapter 6 through 19, he is the judge meting out God's wrath upon the Earth. Chapter 19, he is the returning Lord of Lord and King of Kings. Chapter 20, he is the bridegroom ruling over the newly revised millennial creation for 1,000 years with his bride. Chapter 21 and 22, he is the illumination of the new Jerusalem and the new Heaven and the new Earth.

He's all over the book. He is all throughout it. He is highly exalted. In fact, a vision of him occurs in the first chapter. We'll get to that. But a couple of more preliminary words in verse 1. And I know, we want to cover this through. We're going to cover half the book, God willing. If not, we always have next week.

But notice what it says. The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God-- that is God the Father-- gave to him, gave to Jesus, to show his servants. God gave it to Jesus. Jesus gave it to John. And he sent and signified it by his angel to his servant John. But notice in verse 1, it says things which must shortly take place. To me, that's a key phrase, shortly, because you're reading that going, shortly? That was written 2,000 years ago. Shortly? Could you define shortly, John or Jesus, or God, since it came from you? Shortly?

The word here is important. It's the word in Greek, two words, [SPEAKING GREEK]. is the Greek word from which we get the word tachometer. And you know a tachometer is an instrument that measures the velocity. And the idea is that once the events begin to take place, they will take place rapidly, shortly. Once the events take place written about, it's not going to be a long time. It might take a long time to get up to that, but once they start ticking off, there's going to be a velocity to it.

That's what I think Jesus meant when he said, unless those days were shortened, there would be no flesh saved, but for the elect's sake, those days will be shortened, speaking of the days of the tribulation period. So, verse 2, "who bore witness to the word of God--" that is John-- "and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, through all things that he saw. Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy and keep those things which are written in it, for the time is near."

John wrote this on the rocky island of Patmos. It's about 25 miles out in the sea off the coast of modern-day Turkey, ancient Asia Minor. It was a penal colony at the time. It's a small, very barren island, only six miles wide by about 10 miles long. But notice verse 3, the promise. It's the only book that has this promise in it. "Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy and keep those things that are written in it."

The word blessed could be translated "oh, the joys" or "oh, how happy" are those who read this book. Now, if you're familiar with the Book of Revelation, that might strike you as an odd promise. Because you read the Book of Revelation, get into chapter six, and people are dying and plant life is getting destroyed and the seas are getting polluted. And it seems pretty catastrophic and pretty disastrous and pretty grim. Where's the joy in that?

Keep reading. Keep reading all the way to the end. That's where the joy kicks in. Because it eventuates in the return of Jesus ruling and reigning, judging Satan, putting him away, the millennial kingdom, the eternal state, new Heaven and a new Earth. It gets better if you keep on going. So the book has a promise-- a promise of joy. And I think you will rob yourself of a lot of joy if you neglect this book.

Also, I'm going to take you to the very end of the book. In chapter 22, it is repeated in verse 6. "Then he said to me, these words are faithful and true, and the Lord God of the holy prophet sent his angel to show his servants the things which must--" here it is again-- "shortly take place. Behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed--" or the one who is full of joy. "Blessed, oh how happy is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book."

Billy Graham was once asked by a group of senators, said, Billy, are you are you an optimist or are you a pessimist? He goes, I'm an optimist. And they said, why is that? He goes, because I've read the last page of the book. And we win. The devil is bound for 1,000 years. Satan is eventually destroyed. We rule and reign with Him forever. Because of that, I'm an optimist. So it's promised great joy.

Lewis Talbot, I couldn't resist reading this to you, said, "The devil has turned thousands of people away from this portion of God's word. He does not want anyone to read a book that tells of his being cast out of Heaven, nor is he anxious for us to read of the ultimate triumph of his number one enemy, Jesus Christ. The more you study the Book of Revelation, the more you understand why Satan fights so hard to keep God's people away from it."

So it is a book of prophecy that predicts the ultimate and total rule and reign of Christ over his creation, the total demise of Satan after his incarceration and judgment. But it is a special kind of prophecy. It's not like 0.1, the rapture of the church, and then a little theology to follow, 0.2, the tribulation period. It is written very differently. Notice what it says in verse 1.

You say, Skip, you've got to get out of verse 1. It says, "and he sent and--" what's the next word? Signified. That's an important word. It means to tell or to reveal by signs. So it is written in a sign language, a language of signs, the language of idioms.

And here's why I believe-- when people say, why is the language of revelation this apocalyptic book? You know, instead of just telling us what's going to happen, there's beasts and there's lamp stands and there's a sword going out of the mouth of Jesus. Why such picturesque language? Why such symbolism?

A couple of reasons. Reason number one, symbolism withstands time and culture. When something is written like this, cultural, linguistic barriers that change every couple of years-- the human language is fluid. It changes all the time. When you write about it in signs, it transcends cultural differences and time barriers.

Number two, when you write something with these kinds of symbols, it makes a dramatic emotional impact. It's one thing to say, there's coming a world leader. It's another thing to describe him as a beast, a ferocious beast. That does something and it heightens the emotional impact. And I think, for those reasons, it is written.

Something else-- these idioms are foreign to us unless you are bathed in the Old Testament. If you are a student of the Old Testament, the idioms used in the book of Revelation are familiar to you. Here's what I mean. Out of the 404 verses that comprise the Book of Revelation-- that's how many verses are in it-- 360 contain pieces of Old Testament scripture. You will find all of those idioms that are mentioned in this book in the Old Testament.

So it presupposes you have a working knowledge of the Old Testament, because when you get to the Book of Revelation, there's a lot of familiarity there. And I mentioned 360 out of 404. If you were to take all of the allusions to the Old Testament, you would have well over 800 in the Book of Revelation.

So for a first century Jewish reader, makes perfect sense. For a 2020 post-COVID group of believers in gentile regions, it might be a little more difficult, but not to them. So the message of the Book of Revelation, I'm going to take you down to verse 9. No I'm not. I'm going to take you down to verse 19, if I can. And here's what I want to show you in chapter 1, verse 19.

Luckily, we are given by the author himself, in the first chapter, an outline of the book. Now, I tell you why I like this, because throughout The Bible From 30,000 Feet, I have outlined the book for you. Sometimes I do it with alliteration. Usually I do it that way so you can remember it a little more easily. But I don't have to do that in the Book of Revelation, because John, through Jesus, through God the Father gives us his outline. And here it is.

Chapter 1, verse 19, "write the things which you have seen--" that's number one-- "the things which are--" that's number two-- "and the things which will take place after this." That's number three. Now, that is precisely how the Book of Revelation is laid out. John first writes the things that he sees. That is the vision of Jesus Christ, this incredible vision that he had never seen of the Lord Jesus before.

Then he writes about seven churches, the things which are, the conditions that were going on in seven churches in Asia Minor at that time. Then, beginning in chapter 4 to the very end of the book, he writes about things that will take place after the things of the church. So in chapter 1, verse 19, where it says "and the things which take place after this," the Greek words are meta tauta, after this or beyond these, beyond these things, meta tauta.

And then when you get to chapter 4, verse 1, it begins by saying "after these things," and the word in Greek is exactly the same-- meta tauta. Beyond these, after these. So that is how the book is written. He writes what he sees, and then he writes the things which are, the conditions of the seven churches in Asia Minor. Then he writes about the future, what's going on after these things.

So let's look at what he sees, the things which are. Chapter 1, verse 9. We'll just skim through some of this. "I, John, both your brother and companion in tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. I was in the spirit on the Lord's day, and I heard behind me a loud voice as of a trumpet saying, I am the Alpha, the Omega, the First, the Last. What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches, which are in Asia-- to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamus, to Tyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.

Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me, and having turned, I saw seven golden lamp stands. And in the midst of the seven lamp stands, one like the son of man clothed with a garment down to his feet, girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes like a flame of fire. His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and his voice as the sound of many waters. In his right hand, seven stars. Out of his mouth was a sharp, two-edged sword. His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.

When I saw him," John writes, "I fell at his feet as dead." But he laid his right hand on him. "He said, Do not be afraid. I am the first and the last."

Now, this is John the apostle. He walked with Jesus. He remembers seeing Jesus face-to-face in the flesh. He saw Christ as the Nazarene. He was there when Jesus was transfigured before him with Moses and Elijah. He saw the resurrected Christ. He watched Jesus ascend into Heaven. But he had never seen a Jesus that looks like this.

Now John is in the spirit, he says. In the spirit on the Lord's day, or unto the day of the Lord it could be literally put. And in this capacity, he sees Jesus as the coming judge. Now, if you're, again, familiar with your Old Testament, Daniel chapter 7, the vision John sees is similar to the vision that is put out in that chapter in the Old Testament book. But John sees Jesus as the coming judge.

Did you notice, in verse 13, he is in the midst of seven lamp stands? And then there are seven stars in verse 16. Luckily, we don't have to try to figure out what that means. We don't have to make a guess. I think it means this or it means that. We're told exactly what that means in verse 20 of chapter 1. "The mystery of the seven stars, which you saw in my right hand, and the seven golden lamp stands, the seven stars are the angels--" angelos, messengers of the seven churches. "And the seven lamp stands which you saw are the seven churches."

So the seven churches are depicted as seven lamp stands. How fitting that is. The role of the church in any community is to be a bright and shining light. Jesus said, you are the light of the world. A city set upon a hill cannot be hidden. To be more exact, our role as light bearers, as a lamp stand, is to show people the way out of darkness.

How do you get out of the desperate darkness of this world? You know the answer to that. It's following Jesus. It's loving Him. It's that personal relationship with God through the Lord Jesus Christ. So it is a fitting description of the church.

Verse 15, "his feet were like fine brass, as refined in a furnace, and his voice like the sound of many waters." Brass is a symbol of judgment as, again, you are familiar with from your reading of the Old Testament. In the Tabernacle, an animal was killed on an altar made of brass. The animal was bled on the brass altar. It was engulfed in flames on the brass altar.

Brass is a symbol of judgment. The brass altar was the place where sin was judged by God so that the people could approach God in that tabernacle setting.

Now, when we get to chapter 2 of Revelation, we're now dealing with the second part of the outline, the things which are, right? The things which you have seen, he does that, right? The things which are, and that's the things of the church. So it says, to the angel of the church of Ephesus write. Chapter 2 and chapter 3 are seven letters to seven churches.

Really, they're not letters. They're shorter than that. They're like seven postcards to seven churches. If Jesus were to drop a postcard in the mail to the churches, this is what they would read. Why seven? One thing you notice about the Book of Revelation, it's very seven conscious. I don't have time to explain all the symbolism and why that is. I've done that before. I have a short period of time, so I'm going to move on.

But there are seven churches. Why seven? Why these seven? There are seven churches located in Asia Minor. We have traveled to visit these ruins of the churches. They don't exist, by the way, anymore. They're all overtaken by Muslim mosques in these areas. But at the time, there were seven growing churches that were facing persecutions and temptations already to compromise.

Now they're gone. The lamp stand has been removed in these seven churches. But why these seven? For example, why isn't the church in Jerusalem mentioned. That's a prominent church. Or the church in Antioch. That's probably the second most prominent church. Or the church in Rome. That was probably the most famous of the churches. None of those are mentioned, but these are mentioned.

The seven churches that are listed in Revelation 2 and 3, these seven letters, represent, number one, seven historical churches that had these exact conditions going on in the assembly. Number two, the seven letters to the seven churches speak about historical conditions of the church. From the apostolic era to the last days, the apostate era, all of the eras of church history can be summed up by these seven letters to seven churches.

We have considered that in other studies. You can look that up and see how. But if you were to take these seven letters and put them in any other order historically, they would not fit. They fit perfectly in the order in which they're given. So local conditions, there is an historic application to the errors of church history.

Number three, there is a timeless application. It's for all churches of all ages. And I would even say there's a fourth. There is a personal application. You will read through these conditions of these churches, and you will be able to relate to one or more of them or all of them, depending on where you are in your walk. You might be like the church of Philadelphia one day, then you might feel like the church of Laodicea the next day, depending on what's going on. So it has several applications.

Now, in all of these letters that Jesus gives, He does two things. Number one, He borrows a portion of the vision in chapter 1 to introduce Himself to the church, and each one is different and unique, a different and unique piece. And in all of the seven letters, He says, I know your works. He makes an evaluation, but He always begins by saying, I know your works. I know all about you. So he is the perfect one to bring a judgment or an evaluation.

He does that through chapter 2 and chapter 3. I was going to draw notice to them, but we don't have enough time. So I'll take you over to chapter 3. Let's just look at the last one in the list, verse 14 of chapter 3. "To the angel of the church of the Laodiceans, write, these things says thee, amen. The faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God, I know your works, that you are cold nor hot. I wish that you were cold or hot. So then because you are lukewarm and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of my mouth."

Go down to verse 19. "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore, be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come into him and dine with him and he with me. To him who overcomes, I will grant to sit with me on my throne, as I also overcame and sat down with my father on his throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches."

Typically, we quote verse 20 to unbelievers or about unbelievers. "Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone will hear my voice, open the door." And that does have application, generally, but please notice, in context, Jesus is speaking this not to unbelievers but to his own church which bears his own name. He is saying, I don't want your rituals. I don't want you to go through the motions. I want your heart. I want to have intimate fellowship with you.

That's the idea about whoever opens the door, I will come in and dine with him. You know, in the ancient Middle East, even in the modern Middle East, eating with someone is a very special honor and privilege. And it was always seen that when you ate with someone, you became one with that person. Because if I eat bread and I give you a piece of the same bread, that bread will eventually break down and go in my body and become a part of my body, and the bread will become a part of your body. So, in a sense, over the meal, we're becoming one substance. We're one with each other.

This is why, in 1 Corinthians, chapter 5, Paul says, I don't want you to fellowship with anybody named a brother, calls himself a Christian, but who is an adulterer or an idolater or a list of things. Don't even go and eat with them, because the idea is you're becoming one with them.

One of the things I love about Jesus in the gospels, he loved to eat. And I love to eat. And so that just makes me love Jesus all the more. Like Zacchaeus, come down from that tree. We're going to your house to eat lunch. You didn't know that till now, but you better get a good lunch ready, because I'm coming to your house to eat.

So the idea is Jesus is saying, I don't want ritual. I want intimacy. I want to get close to you. And he is saying that to his church. So write the things which you have seen. Write the things which are. Now, beginning in verse 1 of chapter 4, we get to the third division of the book, the things which will be after these things. We're dealing now with the future.

Here's a hint-- up until now, the word "church" has appeared several times in the Book of Revelation, chapters 1, 2, and 3. It is now absent from the book completely until the very last chapter of the book. Chapter 22, verse 16, is where the word church appears again. That should be a hint to you. Because he's writing about the things that will take place after these things, the things of the church, or the things, you might say, of the church age.

So verse 1, chapter 4, "after these things," meta tauta, "I looked, and behold, a door standing open in Heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet, speaking with me saying, come up here, and I will show you things which must take place--" meta tauta-- "after this. Immediately, I was in the spirit. And behold, the throne set in Heaven, and one sat upon the throne."

So in the next couple of chapters, chapter 4 and 5, the scene takes place in Heaven. Chapter 4 and 5 is adoration in Heaven. That's what takes place after this, adoration in Heaven, followed by tribulation on Earth. That's chapter 6 all the way to 18. Then chapter 19, Jesus Christ comes from Heaven to Earth. Chapter 20 is the millennial kingdom on Earth. Chapter 21 and 22 is the new Heaven and the new Earth. That's what takes place after these things.

Did you notice, in verse 1, he hears a voice. And he said, "The first voice I heard was like a trumpet." And the trumpet didn't just blast, but said, come up here. Does that sound a little bit familiar to you? Does that sort of sound like I Thessalonians chapter 4, where Paul said, "The Lord will descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. And we who are alive and remain will be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air, so shall we ever be with him."

That's a classic verse that describes the harpazo, the rapture, the catching away of the church. So writing about the vision, writing about the Church, now the rest of the book is from a heavenly perspective after being caught up into the throne room of Heaven. And he sees adoration in Heaven and tribulation on Earth. It's all from a heavenly perspective.

He sees a throne. A throne is mentioned 13 times in chapter 4. Most of the time, it's God's throne, though there are other thrones. I saw a throne set in Heaven, and one sat on the throne, verse 2. And he who sat there was like a jasper, sardius, stone in appearance. There was a rainbow around the throne in appearance like an emerald. "Around the throne were 24 thrones, and I saw 24 elders sitting clothed in white robes. They had crowns of gold on their heads. And from the throne proceeded lightnings, thunderings, and voices. Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the seven spirits of God. Before the throne, there was a sea of glass like crystal. In the midst of the throne and around the throne were four living creatures, full of eyes in front and in back."

It is a courtroom scene. There is a throne. There is an authoritative figure, God the Father, sitting on the throne. But then in this heavenly court, there are 24 elders-- 24 thrones, 24 elders. And the 24 elders are representative figures. Let me explain.

There's only one other time in the Bible where we have 24 people in a kind of a court setting, and that is back in the Old Testament. David appointed 24 courses of priests for the Levitical priesthood in Israel. And these 24 priests represented the-- since a priest represented the people, they were representative of the whole nation.

So 24 elders. An elder is a reference to a church position, a position of authority. Some prefer to break this up into 12 plus 12. That is, there's 12 representatives of the tribes of Israel, Twelve Apostles, like mentioned in the latter portion of the Book of Revelation in the new Jerusalem. And I go into depth in the book that I wrote. But these are representative, probably representing the church in Heaven before the throne of God.

Now, I'm going to take you to chapter 5, because we have to get going. It said, "And I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll, written inside and on the back, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, who is worthy to open this scroll and to loose its seals? And no one in Heaven or on the Earth or under the Earth was able to open the scroll or to look at it. And so I wept much, because no one was found worthy to open and read this scroll or to look at it.

But one of the elders said to me, do not weep. Behold, the lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David, has prevailed to open this scroll and to loose its seven seals. And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures--" these are angelic beings-- "and in the midst of the elders--" that's the 24 elders-- "stood a lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the Earth. And he came and took the scroll out of the right hand of him who sits on the throne."

This has been called, by some scholars, the greatest real estate escrow deal in history. The scroll is a title deed. Let me show you why. Again, I said you can understand the Book of Revelation through the lens of the Old Testament. In Jeremiah chapter 32, while Jeremiah's in prison, the Lord speaks to him in saying, listen, your cousin, Hanamel, is going to come and visit you and offer you a deal. He's going to say that the right of redemption, to purchase a plot of land of his in the town of Anathoth, has come up, and he's going to offer for you to buy it, because you are related to him.

So he's sitting in prison, and one day Hanamel comes in and goes, hey, listen. I've got a plot of land in Anathoth, and the right of redemption has come up. And Jeremiah, you're a relative. So I'd like you to buy it. And as soon as this happened, Jeremiah said, I knew it was the Lord. Just like the Lord told me he was coming, he came.

So he bought the land as an act of faith, because he had already predicted the children of Israel-- we, us, in Jerusalem-- were all going to be taken captive. We're going to be expelled out of this country, taken into the foreign land of Babylon, which makes our land worthless. But by faith, I'm going to buy it, because I believe we're going to return to this land, and it's going to be worth something then. In 70 years, I'm going to get my cash back.

So he bought the land, and it says he signed the deed, the deed of purchase, which was a scroll that was sealed. So when you lost land, a kinsman could buy the property, somebody related to you. He had to be related to you. He had to be able to do so. He had to have cash in hand. He had to be willing to do so. That's the background of the Book of Ruth.

Boas becomes a kinsman redeemer, buying land, marrying Ruth, taking the bride to himself. Beautiful picture of redemption in the Lord Jesus Christ.

So this scroll is a title deed. The terms of the deed were written on the inside. Here, it's written on the inside and on the outside, and it's not sealed by one or two clay seals but seven seals. Now, each of those seals, when broken, represents a judgment. It begins in chapter 6 of the Book of Revelation.

So throughout the rest of the chapter, worship breaks out in Heaven because Jesus is the kinsman. He's related-- that is, he was a human being. He was able to do so. His precious blood was enough to purchase men's souls back to God, and he was certainly willing to do so. He said, "No one takes my life from me. I lay it down of myself." So he fulfills the qualifications.

Now, all of Heaven breaks out in worship. So in verse 8, down to verse 10, the four living creatures and the 24 elders worship. In verses 11 and 12, the angelic host of Heaven worships. And then in verse 13 and 14, every creature in Heaven worships. Verse 13, "Every creature, which is in Heaven and on Earth and under the Earth, such as are in the sea and all that are in them, I heard saying, blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne and to the lamb forever and ever."

So 4 and 5, worship in Heaven, adoration in Heaven. Beginning in chapter 6, there's a switch. We now move to the Earth, and beginning in chapter 6 all the way through the chapter 18 are a series of very graphic, cataclysmic, disastrous judgments. And there are three categories of those judgments. There are seals, as in the seven-sealed document that is broken and read and judgment ensues. And then there are seven trumpet judgments, followed by seven bowl or vial judgments poured out contents upon the Earth.

There's a pattern to these judgments. There is a six and one pattern. So this is how it goes throughout the rest of the book, all the way through to chapter 18. Chapter 6 gives you six seals that are broken. All of them are judgments. After the sixth seal, there's a parenthesis, sort of a catch-up. So chapter 7 is a parenthetical statement, where more information is given, followed by the seventh seal, which ushers in the next seven judgments, which are the trumpets.

Same thing. You have chapter 8, the six trumpet judgments, followed by chapter 9, chapter 10. You have more information given. Then you have that final trumpet. Then you have the seven bowls and a parenthesis in between those judgments. So it's just descriptive of the last seven years of history on the Earth before it's totally obliterated and destroyed called the tribulation period. So let's get into it, and I'll describe it a little bit more in detail.

"Now I saw, when the lamb--" verse 1, chapter 6-- "opened one of the seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying, with a voice like thunder, come and see. And I looked and behold a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow, and a crown was given to him. And he went out conquering and to conquer.

When he opened the second seal, I heard a second living creature saying, come and see. Another horse, fiery red, went out, and it was granted to the one who sat on it to take peace from the Earth that the people should kill one another. And there was given to him a great sword.

When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, come and see. And I looked and behold a black horse, and you sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand. And I heard a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, a quart of wheat for a denarius--" or a day's wage. In other words, it'll take you a day's wage to get about a loaf of bread. "And three quarts of barley for a denarius and do not harm the oil and the wine.

When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, come and see. Behold, a pale horse, and the name of him who sat on it was Death, and Hades followed with him. And power was given over a fourth of the Earth to kill with sword, with hunger, with death, and by the beasts of the Earth."

Something you should know about the tribulation period. It's not just a bad time. It's not just a really bad day or a bad few years. There is no historical parallel to what's coming-- not the Holocaust of World War II, not the Great Depression, not the COVID pandemic. Nothing compares to it.

Jeremiah chapter 30, Daniel chapter 12, and the Lord Jesus Christ in Matthew 24 said, "There's coming a day upon the Earth. Nothing can compare to it." It would be the very worst time in human history. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. But let just read to you what Jesus said.

"For then there will be great tribulation such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved, but for the elect's sake, those days will be shortened."

What you should know is that more space is devoted in the Bible to the tribulation period, the great tribulation period, than just about any other subject. Massive amounts of detail in both Old and New Testament. What kind of things are going to happen? Well, we read a sampling of it, and it gets worse from here. From the seals to the trumpets to the bowl judgments, there is a progression and intensity of judgment. It just gets worse and worse and worse.

It's probably going to happen in a very short period of time, in that last 3 and 1/2 years of tribulation. But a sampling of it, there is smoke filling the Earth, fire from Heaven hitting the Earth, falling stars that destroy vegetation, demons coming up out of the bottomless pit and tormenting people upon the Earth.

We get to chapter 7, that's one of the parenthetical statements. Notice the question at the end of chapter 6, because it is answered in chapter 7. Last verse of revelation 6, verse 17, "For the great day of his wrath has come, and who is able to stand?"

Now, that question gets answered in chapter 7 by introducing to us two groups that will stand, that will make it through the tribulation period as saved people, believers. They will come to faith during the tribulation. The rapture will have already happened. God's wrath is being poured out on the Earth, but the Holy Spirit will still be active during that time. So there are two groups that are introduced in chapter 7.

144,000 Jews-- they're called Jews from the children of Israel, and the tribes are given. And then an innumerable multitude of non-Jews, gentiles. So, in verse 4, "I heard the number of those who were sealed." That's what the first few verses are all about, sealing 144,000. "The number of those who were sealed, 144,000--" notice this-- "of all the tribes of the children of Israel were sealed."

So the next time a Jehovah Witness knocks on your door-- he's not doing it these days because of COVID, but they'll come back. And when they do and they announce to you, I'm a member of the 144,000, ask them which tribe they're from. Oh, are you from the tribe of Zebulun? And you can have a little fun with it. Because it's not the Jehovah's Witnesses that are described here or the Seventh Day Adventists. They, too, believe they're the 144,000.

These are 144,000 Messianic Jews. They come to faith in Jesus Christ during the tribulation period, probably because of the witness of what you're going to read about in chapter 11. Two witnesses that come with miraculous signs to Jerusalem, to Israel. And probably as a result of the two Jewish witnesses, 144,000 of them will be saved out of all of these tribes.

Now, they're introduced first, because they help explain the appearance of another group that is introduced in chapter 7, and that is verse 9. After these things, I looked and behold a great multitude, which no one could number, of all nations. So these are not Jewish people, but gentile people. "All nations, tribes, peoples, tongues standing before the throne and before the lamb, clothed with white robes and palm branches in their hands, crying with a loud voice saying, salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne and to the lamb."

Go down to verse 13. "One of the elders answered and said to me, who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from? And I said to him, sir, you know. So he said to me, these are the ones who come out of the great tribulation and wash their robes and made them white in the blood of the lamb. Therefore, they are before the throne of God and serve Him day and night in His temple. And he who sits on the throne will dwell among them."

So we have people being saved in the tribulation period. I've always contended that the greatest revival ever in history is coming in the tribulation period. And I don't plan to be there during that time. I believe the rapture of the church happens. And then after these things comes the tribulation period. During the tribulation period, however, the spirit of God will send two witnesses-- Revelation, chapter 11-- whom I believe are Moses and Elijah. I'll just spill that before we get to it.

And through these two people's witness, 144,000 will come to faith in Christ. They're sealed during that time. They become incredible evangelists. And the result is an innumerable group of people from all these tribes and nations who are living through the great tribulation period. Most of them will be martyred because of their faith. But they are saved during that time. So that's why I say the greatest revival is coming.

Chapter 8 of Revelation is phase two. This is where the trumpet judgments come. And the first four trumpets are natural judgments. The last three are supernatural. They involve demon activity. So the first trumpet, verse 7, hail and fire followed, mingled with blood, and they were thrown into the Earth. A third of the trees were burned up, and all the grass was burned up. And so the trumpets continue, these judgments, cataclysms, through chapter 8 and chapter 9.

Chapter 10 is another parenthetical statement, where more information is given. "I saw still another mighty angel coming down from Heaven clothed with a cloud, and a rainbow was on his head. His face was like the sun, his feet like pillars of fire." So this is like an interlude between the sixth and seventh trumpet judgments.

Now chapter 11. I'm going to take you to verse 3. "I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy 1,260 days clothed in sackcloth." 1,260 days is 3 and 1/2 years, or 42 months. "These are the two olive trees and the two lamp stands standing before the God of the Earth."

So get this. You're reading chapter 3, and you're going, OK, God's introducing two witnesses to us. They're going to do something. They're going to prophesy. And you go, gosh, I wonder who they would be. So he gives us now an explanation. "These are the two olive trees and the two lamp stands standing before the God of the Earth." And you're thinking, that doesn't help me.

"And if anyone wants to harm them, fire proceeds from their mouth and devours their enemies. And if anyone wants to harm them, he must be killed in this manner. These have the power to shut Heaven so that no rain falls in the days of their prophecy, and they have power over the waters to turn them to blood and to strike the Earth with all plagues as often as they desire. And when they finish their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit will make war on them and overcome them and kill them."

Oh, I wish I had time to tell you about Zechariah chapter 4. That unlocks the olive trees. Let me do it really briefly. Remember, Zechariah has a vision in chapter 4 of the Book of Zechariah, and he sees a golden bowl. He sees the lamp stand, a golden lamp stand, and above the lamp stand was a golden bowl. And there were seven golden pipes that went right into the seven lamps on the menorah, the lamp stand. And on either side of the lamp stand were two olive trees.

So it was like an automated menorah, where oil went directly from the olive tree into the bowl, and that receptacle then fed the menorah, the seven-branched lamp stand that he saw in the vision, which was a symbol that was used in the tabernacle. And so it was just automatically filling it. And so the angel that is with him says, you know, what does this mean? And sort of like John, he goes, well, I don't know. You know. You tell me.

So the angel says, I'll tell you what this is. This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel. It's not by might. It's not by power. It is by my spirit says the Lord. You go tell Zerubbabel that he laid the foundations of the temple, and he is going to finish the temple. You encourage Joshua the high priest and Zerubbabel the civic leader that what they started, they're going to finish, like those two olive trees. That's who they are.

I am with my people. I am going to give all that my people need to finish the project. So we have two witnesses who are like Zerubbabel and Joshua, the high priest, coming in the tribulation period. You follow me so far? But though they are Jewish in background, they have certain signs that they can perform, right? They can make the water turn into blood, and they can bring plagues upon the people. That's what it says in Revelation 11.

The only one I know who did that in the Old Testament, that guy's named Moses. And then he can stop rain from happening. He can call fire down from Heaven. Elijah did that. I believe that the two witnesses coming in the tribulation period are Moses and Elijah. You're going, oh, come on. Well, yes, it actually happened before.

On a certain mountain, in the northern part of Israel, Jesus was transfigured before Peter, James, and John, and who appeared with him? Moses and Elijah. I believe that was kind of a staff meeting before the final event, kind of running down notes of what's going to happen during that kingdom excursion here.

So given what they do, given the fact that they already appeared with Jesus speaking about the kingdom that was coming, and given the fact that Elijah never died-- he was taken up into Heaven, the Bible says. And Moses died, but nobody knows what happened to his body. And the Bible says, in the Book of Jude, Satan was disputing with the Lord over the body of Moses. Why? Who cares about a body? Unless God had a future use for that body.

So if I put all of those texts together, without any commentaries, just the texts of scripture, it leads me to believe that Moses and Elijah have a future testimony to the nation of Israel. And I got to tell you, if you were a Jew living in Israel and Moses or Elijah showed up, you'd listen. Because every Passover, they're waiting for Elijah to come. And Moses is the great lawgiver. So I believe it's Moses and Elijah being the witnesses.

The witness leads 144,000, chapter 7, to be saved. 144,000 leads that great revival in the tribulation period, the end of chapter 7. Let's close out chapter 11 verse 14, "The second woe is past, and behold, the third woe is coming quickly. The seventh angel sounded, and there was a loud voice in Heaven saying, The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and they shall reign forever and ever."

We'll close there. We'll pick it up next week with the end of chapter 11, all the way to chapter 22, where will finish out the tribulation period, see the second coming of Jesus Christ, chapter 19. The millennial reign of Christ, chapter 20. The new Heaven and the new Earth and the eternal state, chapter 21 and 22. But that is just barely touching the surface.

Because after all, if 404 verses in Revelation, 360 of them have pieces of Old Testament analogy in scripture, it takes a while to kind of manage through that. So one of the most stimulating, satisfying studies you can take is going through the Book of Revelation, finding out those Old Testament passages to unlock the meaning, and write down what you discover. And you'll come out the other end knowing this book.

So, Father, thank you for the book that tells the future. It shows us Jesus in His glorified state in chapter 1. It gives us church conditions in chapters 2 and 3. But then it tells us what is going to take place after this at some future, undisclosed moment in history, in our future, upon planet Earth. Lord, I pray that we will be ready. In Jesus' name, amen.

Can I have you stand to your feet? There's something that I neglected to share with you. And I just want to drop this off in your head before next week. In chapter 6 of Revelation, in the fourth seal, it says that he saw a pale horse. Power was given over a fourth of the Earth to kill with the sword, with hunger, with death, and by the beasts of the Earth.

Now, we read that word, beasts of the Earth, and we think about four-footed beasts. Don't narrow the meaning of that. It could be like four-footed beasts, or it could be-- now think of this interpretation, in light of what we're going through. It could be microscopic beasts. It could be not four-footed beasts like what you think about running around the street tearing at something, but it could be some kind of biological germ warfare unleashed in the world.

And you can look around and see the kind of fear and compliance that a society is willing to go through to eradicate something they really don't even know where it came from or what it's going to do. I wrote an article about this in Decision Magazine recently. And I believe what we're seeing now today is just a dress rehearsal for the future, when things will be unleashed in the world and the kind of fear Jesus spoke about. Men's hearts will be failing them for fear over what's coming on the Earth.

I encourage you, if you don't know the Lord Jesus Christ, invite Him into your heart, because these days are coming. They're coming. Nobody saw this coming. The days written about in Revelation, they are coming. And maybe Jesus has been knocking on the door of your heart. He wants you to open that door.

Father, I pray for anyone here who doesn't know You that they would say yes to Jesus Christ and invite him into their lives, into their hearts. If that happens to be you, right where you are, if you've come tonight or you're listening by radio or watching this online, invite Christ to be Lord and Savior. Say, Lord, I know I'm a sinner. Please forgive me.

I turn from my sin. I turn to Jesus as Savior. I want to follow Him as Lord. I believe He died on a cross. I believe He rose from the dead. I believe He's coming again. I want to be ready. So I give You my life. I make Jesus Lord. Teach me what it means to follow Him every day. In Jesus' name, amen.

Now, if you prayed that, I want you to identify yourself, mask or not, after the service to one of our leaders who will be upfront. You can get six feet away from them, but just say, I prayed that prayer. We want to give you something sanitized and place it in your hands. It gives you directions on what to do next. If you happen to be watching this on your phone, you can text the word "SAVED" to 505-509-5433.

If you're on the website, click Know God right in the right-hand corner of the calvarynm.church website, and we'll give you further information. Thank you for indulging me. I went over time. I'm so sorry. I'll really try to cut it off closer next time, but we finish 30K next time. Let's close with a song.

[APPLAUSE]

For more resources, visit calvarynm.church. Thank you for joining us for this teaching from The Bible From 30,000 Feet.

Additional Messages in this Series

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8/8/2018
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Flight GEN01
Genesis 1-11
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We're going back to the beginning in this first flight. Written by Moses and inspired by God Himself, Genesis means origin. From the formation of all created things and the fall of man to the flood and the fallout of man's rebellion, Genesis 1-11 chronicles the beginning of everything. It all starts here.
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8/15/2018
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Flight GEN02
Genesis 12-50
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This flight takes us through the biographical part of Genesis and God's response to man's rebellion. Four men are prominent in the formation of the nation of Israel: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. Through this lineage, God would fulfill His promise of salvation for humanity.
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8/22/2018
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Flight EXO01
Exodus 1-18
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The central event in this flight through Exodus is the redemption of God's people, the Israelites, from their bondage in Egypt. We fly over Egypt and the wilderness where Israel wandered for forty years. The plight of the Israelites, their disobedience, and God's deliverance all foreshadow Jesus Christ.
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9/5/2018
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Flight EXO02
Exodus 19-40
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The Sinai Peninsula is the backdrop for this flight to Exodus, where God gave Moses the Ten Commandments along with detailed instructions for how He was to be worshiped. Miraculous signs of God's absolute power abound, along with the revelation from God that would define Israel's national identity.
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9/12/2018
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Flight LEV01
Leviticus 1-27
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Leviticus describes the worship life of the nation of Israel. We discover how the Israelites were instructed to make atonement for their sin through sacrifice. The overarching theme of this book can be summed up in one word: holiness. After centuries of captivity in Egypt, the Israelites needed a reminder of who God is, His absolute holiness, and how they were to live set apart for Him.
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10/10/2018
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Flight NUM01
Numbers 1-36
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Numbers contains two censuses of the Hebrew people. The first is of the generation that left Egypt, including how they were organized, their journey in the wilderness, and their refusal to enter the Promised Land. Due to their disobedience, the first generation of Israelites failed to enter the land God had promised; however, God remained faithful by leading a new generation into the Promised Land.
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10/17/2018
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Flight DEU01
Deuteronomy 1-34
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After forty years of wandering, the Israelites were finally ready to enter the Promised Land. The book of Deuteronomy can be organized around three messages Moses gave while the Israelites waited to enter the land. With the key word of this book being covenant, Deuteronomy speaks of the special relationship God established with His people.
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10/24/2018
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Flight JOS01
Joshua 1-24
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In this flight over the book of Joshua, we get to know its namesake, who shared in all the events since Exodus and held the place of military commander under Moses' leadership. We'll also get a tour of the Promised Land and follow Israel's conquest of Canaan, after which Joshua divided the land among the twelve tribes.
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11/7/2018
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Flight JUD01
Judges 1-21
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The Israelites experienced a period of victorious conquests in Canaan after Joshua's death. But as their obedience to God's laws and their faith in God's promises diminished, Israel became entrenched in the sin cycle. God divinely appointed Judges to provide leadership and deliverance during this chaotic time. Sadly, God's people repeatedly did what was right in their own eyes.
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11/28/2018
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Flight RUT01
Ruth 1-4
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In this flight, we'll see the godly love and courage of two very different women from very different backgrounds. And we'll meet Boaz, who became Ruth's kinsman-redeemer, a type of Christ. Although the book of Ruth is short, it is prophetically important in terms of the genealogy of Jesus Christ. Ruth's story of romantic grace places love at the center of each of its four chapters.
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12/5/2018
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Flight 1SAM1
1 Samuel 1-31
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In this flight, we find the nation of Israel in desperate need of direction and leadership. We will meet the man whose good looks, physical stature, and success in war made him an obvious choice from a human perspective, but Israel's first king had a tragic flaw: pride. From the ashes of King Saul's calamitous reign, God raised up an unlikely man who would become Israel's next king, a man after His own heart.
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1/16/2019
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Flight 2SAM1
2 Samuel 1-24
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David went from shepherding livestock to serving as God's sovereign king in Israel. His faith and obedience assured him military and political victory as one by one he defeated Israel's enemies. In this flight, we both celebrate David's successes and identify with his failures as we get to know this man whom God called, "a man after My own heart."
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1/23/2019
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Flight 1KIN1
1 Kings 1-22
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After years of being a powerful unified nation under King David, Israel, because of their disobedience, became a divided nation under many different kings. This book reveals a story of good kings and bad kings, true prophets and false prophets, and faithfulness and disobedience to God.
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2/6/2019
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Flight 2KIN1
2 Kings 1-25
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Despite the many kings who took control of Israel, the nation still lacked true leadership. Second Kings continues the history of a divided Israel, and we see what happens when a nation passes from affluence and influence to poverty and paralysis.
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2/13/2019
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Flight 1CHR1
1 Chronicles 1-29
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The book of 1 Chronicles recounts the lineage of King David as well as God's promise that He would establish His reign on earth through this man after His own heart. As we see how God fulfilled His promises to David, we discover how that presents a witness of His faithfulness to us today.
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3/6/2019
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Flight 2CHR1
2 Chronicles 1-36
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After King Solomon's reign and death, the nation of Israel went on a spiritual roller coaster ride that ended with the division of the kingdom and the people's exile. From the temple's building to its decline and destruction, we see a parallel to 1 and 2 Kings from a spiritual viewpoint.
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3/27/2019
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Flight EZR01
Ezra 1-10
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The book of Ezra begins with King Cyrus' decree for the children of Israel to rebuild the temple at Jerusalem. Ezra tells of two different returns: the first led by Zerubbabel to rebuild the temple, and the second by Ezra to bring reformation to the people. In this flight, we see God's faithfulness in keeping His promise to return His people to their homeland.
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4/3/2019
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Flight NEH01
Nehemiah 1-13
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At the end of Ezra, the temple in Jerusalem had been rebuilt and dedicated, but the city walls were still in ruins. After gaining permission from the king of Persia, Nehemiah led a group to repair and rebuild the walls. Though he was met with hostility and conflict, we see how Nehemiah gathered his spiritual strength from God during trialing times.
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4/10/2019
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Flight EST01
Esther 1-10
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Esther reads almost like a fairy tale: A Jewish maiden becomes queen of Persia. The villain launches an attack to destroy the Jews. In the end, his plot is thwarted by the hero and the brave maiden, who risks her life to save her people. Though the name of God isn't mentioned once in this short book, we clearly see God's providence and faithfulness in dealing with His people.
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4/24/2019
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Flight JOB01
Job 1-42
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The book of Job opens in the throne room of heaven with a conversation between God and Satan regarding the faithfulness of a man named Job. God allowed Satan to test Job, and Satan caused Job to lose his health, wealth, and even his beloved family. But in the midst of Job's tragic circumstances, God revealed His sovereignty and faithfulness, and Job's steadfast faith prevailed.
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5/1/2019
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Flight PSA01
Psalms 1-150
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The book of Psalms is a collection of songs, prayers, and poetry that express the deepest of human emotions. These artistic masterpieces were compiled over a period of roughly 1,000 years from the time of Moses to the time of Ezra and the return from the Babylonian exile. As we fly over the Psalms, we'll see beautiful writings of gladness and grief, pleading and prayers, and reverence and worship—all with one overarching theme: a complete dependence on the love and power of God.
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5/8/2019
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Flight PRO01
Proverbs 1-31
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Known for the wisdom it contains, the book of Proverbs reveals how to deal with everyday situations. But more than just good advice, it is God's words of wisdom, which we need in order to live righteously. These proverbs are universal principles that apply to all people for all times, because they speak of the character of God and the nature of man—both of which remain constant.
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5/15/2019
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Flight ECC01
Ecclesiastes 1- 12
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The book of Ecclesiastes records King Solomon's intense search to find meaning and fulfillment in life. In this flight, we discover some significant truths—namely, that all worldly things are empty and that life's pursuits only lead to frustration. After tasting all that this world has to offer, Solomon ultimately concluded that life without God is meaningless.
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5/22/2019
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Flight SON01
Song of Solomon 1-8
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The Song of Solomon portrays a moving love story between King Solomon and a shepherdess. The story reveals the intimacy, love, and passion that a bridegroom and his bride share in a marriage relationship. Even more than the fulfillment found in the love between a husband and wife, we'll discover that the spiritual life finds its greatest joy in the love God has for His people and Christ has for His church.
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5/29/2019
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Flight ISA01
Isaiah 1-27
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The prophet Isaiah's ministry lasted around fifty years and spanned the reigns of four kings in Judah. His prophecies are quoted in the New Testament more often than any other prophet's. In this first flight over Isaiah, we focus on his prophecies of condemnation that pulled no punches and pointed out Israel's need for God.
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6/26/2019
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Flight ISA02
Isaiah 28-66
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Of all the Old Testament prophets, Isaiah is thought by many to be the greatest, in part because of his clear prophecies about the Messiah. In this second flight over his book, we see his continued work and how God used his prophecies of both condemnation and comfort to generate change in the individuals he encountered.
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7/3/2019
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Flight JER01
Jeremiah 1-20
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The book of Jeremiah is a series of oracles written in the southern kingdom of Judah over a period of fifty-plus years. It speaks of judgment, the promise of restoration, and the protective hand of God over those He loves. In this flight, we catch a glimpse of the man behind the prophecies as he allowed God to speak through him in unusual ways to open the eyes of the people of Israel.
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7/10/2019
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Flight JLA01
Jeremiah 21-52; Lamentations 1-5
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The prophet Jeremiah allowed God to speak through him in unusual ways to open the eyes of the people of Israel. As we complete our flight over his book, we find the prophet reinvigorated by God's promises as he continued to prophesy Babylon's impending invasions and, ultimately, Judah's captivity. Then our flight continues over the poetic book of Lamentations, which Jeremiah wrote as he wept and grieved over Jerusalem's destruction, ending the book with a prayer for Israel's restoration from captivity.
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7/17/2019
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Flight EZE01
Ezekiel 1-48
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Written by Ezekiel the priest, this book takes place during the second Babylonian captivity and documents the fulfillment of several prophecies from previous Old Testament books. In this flight, we see God continue to offer promises of restoration through Ezekiel, bringing the nation hope despite their tribulations.
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7/24/2019
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Flight DAN01
Daniel 1-8
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Chronologically, the book of Daniel links the time of the kings in 2 Chronicles to the restoration of Jerusalem in the book of Ezra. It begins with the first Babylonian captivity and ends with Daniel's vision of seventy weeks. In it, we witness both prophetic history and the four prophetic visions of Daniel, as well as powerful stories that reveal a faithful man of God who was unwilling to compromise his beliefs.
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7/31/2019
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Flight DAN02
Daniel 9-12
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Midway through the book of Daniel, the focus shifts from the historic to the prophetic. Daniel's four prophetic visions reveal the stunning accuracy of biblical prophecy, as well as Daniel's uncompromising faith in God's fulfillment. From the rise and fall of human kingdoms to the Messiah and the day of judgment, Daniel's visions drove him to his knees in fervent prayer for the people of Israel.
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8/7/2019
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Flight HOS01
Hosea 1-14
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Hosea prophesied to the northern kingdom of Israel during the reign of King Jeroboam II, and he had a clear message to deliver: Israel had rejected God, so they would be sent into exile and become wanderers in other nations. On this flight, we see a clear parallel between Hosea's adulterous wife—whom God had instructed Hosea to marry—and Israel's unfaithfulness. But even as Hosea endured a rocky marriage, he continued to share God's plan that He would bring His people back to Himself.
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8/14/2019
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Flight JAO01
Joel 1-3; Amos 1-9; Obadiah
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Through three ordinary men—Joel, Amos, and Obadiah—God delivered extraordinary messages to His people, warning them against greed, injustice, false worship, and self-righteousness. On this flight, we witness God's patience and love for Israel, and we see how He stands ready to forgive and restore all who turn away from their sin.
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8/21/2019
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Flight JON01
Jonah 1-4
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Rather than focusing on prophecy, the book of Jonah narrates a prophet's story. Jonah was blatantly disobedient to God's call, but despite his defiance, God redirected his path through a unique situation. The resulting revival in Nineveh shows us that God's grace reaches beyond the boundaries of Israel to embrace all nations.
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8/28/2019
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Flight MNH01
Micah 1-7; Nahum 1-3; Habakkuk 1-3
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God used three prophets—Micah, Nahum, and Habakkuk—to criticize, comfort, and inspire: Micah encouraged social justice and the authentic worship of God. Nahum prophesied against the Assyrians for returning to their evil practices. And though Habakkuk didn't address Israel directly, his message assured them that evil does not endure forever. Through these prophets, God's people confessed their sins and grew confident in His salvation.
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9/4/2019
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Flight ZHA01
Zephaniah 1-3; Haggai 1-2
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The prophet Zephaniah addressed the social injustice and moral decay of Judah and her neighbors, proclaiming the coming day of the Lord and His wrath upon the nations—both an immediate judgment and a future end-times judgment. God sent Haggai the prophet to preach to the restored community of Jews in Jerusalem after their return from exile in Babylonia. Haggai encouraged the nation to set aside their selfishness and finish rebuilding the temple, an act of obedience that would align their desire with God's desire.
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9/18/2019
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Flight ZMA01
Zechariah 1-14; Malachi 1-4
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As we fly over the last books of the Old Testament, we first look at the expanded message of rebuilding the temple when Zechariah encouraged Israel to anticipate their ultimate deliverance and the Messiah's future reign. One hundred years after the temple was rebuilt, the book of Malachi revealed that God's chosen people had once again slid back into their sinful practices. Malachi declared God's promise of a coming messenger, John the Baptist, and a coming Messiah.
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10/2/2019
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Flight INT01
Intertestamental Period
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In between the Old and New Testaments lies 400 years of history. During this intertestamental period, God chose not to speak to His people through prophets as He orchestrated people, politics, and events in preparation of the coming Messiah. Scholars have come to call these four centuries the silent years. Remarkably, the silence would be broken by a newborn baby's cry in Bethlehem.
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10/9/2019
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Flight MML01
Matthew 1-28; Mark 1-16; Luke 1-24
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These three Synoptic Gospels give us our first glimpses of Jesus' life and death here on earth. Matthew, Mark, and Luke present Jesus Christ as the promised Messiah, the Servant of the Lord, and the Son of Man, respectively. On this flight, we'll see the service, sermons, sacrifices, and sovereignty of Jesus as we witness the fulfillment of many Old Testament prophecies.
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10/16/2019
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Flight JOH01
John 1-21
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The spiritual depth of John sets it apart from the other Gospels, with one-third of its content dedicated to the last week of Jesus' life. Rather than focusing on what Jesus did, John focused on who Jesus is, presenting Him as God incarnate and highlighting His deity. On this flight, we'll see seven miraculous signs of Jesus, as well as seven statements that He used to identify Himself as God.
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10/23/2019
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Flight ACT01
Acts 1-28
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The book of Acts presents the history of a dynamic, growing community of believers that started in Jerusalem and went on to spread the gospel throughout the known world. In this book, the gospel writer Luke also recorded how the early church received the Holy Spirit, who enabled them to witness, love, and serve with boldness and courage, even when faced with persecution.
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10/30/2019
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Flight ROM01
Romans 1-16
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The book of Romans is the apostle Paul's letter to the church in Rome, and it focuses on God's plan of salvation for all humankind. Romans is the most systematic of Paul's letters, reading more like an elaborate theological essay rather than a letter. On this flight, we look at Paul's strong emphasis on Christian doctrine as well as his concern for Israel.
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11/13/2019
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Flight 1COR1
1 Corinthians 1-16
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In 1 Corinthians, Paul confronted the problems that had infiltrated the influential church at Corinth and defended his position as an apostle of Christ. He later rejoiced over their repentance and acceptance of his God-given authority. On this flight, we discover the power of a new life in Jesus as we see how Paul shared the heart of the gospel with his fellow believers.
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11/20/2019
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Flight 2COR1
2 Corinthians 1-13
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After Paul wrote 1 Corinthians, false teachers began spreading opposition to him in the Corinthian church. Paul sent Titus as his representative to deal with them, and most of the church repented. Paul wrote this epistle to express his joy at the turnaround and to appeal to them to accept his authority, which was confirmed by the many hardships he suffered for the gospel. On this flight, we find beautiful truths to carry with us through our own times of suffering.
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12/4/2019
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Flight GAL01
Galatians 1-6
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Galatians is a firm statement of the doctrine of justification by grace through faith. When Paul wrote this letter, the false doctrine of legalism and faith by works had infiltrated the church throughout Galatia. As a result, believers had traded their freedom in Christ for bondage to the old Jewish law that had been fulfilled by Jesus. On this flight, we discover the differences between law and grace as well as the practical application and results of the proper doctrine of grace.
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1/8/2020
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Flight EPH01
Ephesians 1-6
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Who are we in Christ? In Paul's letter to the church in Ephesus, he answered that very question as he addressed a group of believers who were ignorant of their spiritual wealth in Jesus. He explained how the Christian is the bride of Christ, a temple in the Lord, and a soldier for the gospel. On this flight, we see how Paul also emphasized unity among believers, describing the church as a body that works together for a common goal.
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1/15/2020
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Flight PHI01
Philippians 1-4
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Referred to as the epistle of joy, Philippians contains the message that joy is possible in all of life's circumstances, including suffering. Paul wrote this very personal letter while in prison, and despite his trials, he rejoiced over the caring and generous church in Philippi and encouraged them in unity, humility, and prayer.
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1/22/2020
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Flight COL01
Colossians 1-4
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On this flight, we see how the young church in Colossae became the target of a heretical attack that included angel worship, the depreciation of Christ, and reliance on human wisdom. In Paul's letter to this church, he refuted the heresy by exalting Christ as the very image of God, the preexistent sustainer of all things, the head of the church, and the first to be resurrected.
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2/12/2020
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Flight THE01
1 Thessalonians 1-5; 2 Thessalonians 1-3
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The apostle Paul wrote 1 and 2 Thessalonians in response to a report that some errors and misunderstandings about his teaching had crept into the church at Thessalonica. But Paul also used the opportunity to encourage the believers there, exhorting them in the Word, warning them against pagan immorality, and urging them to remain steadfast in God's truth in the face of persecution.
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6/10/2020
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Flight TIM01
1 Timothy 1-6; 2 Timothy 1-4
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These loving letters to Timothy, a young pastor in Ephesus, reveal Paul's true love for his brother in Christ. Timothy was facing a heavy burden of responsibility, so Paul not only instructed him about the conduct of the church and its ministers but also encouraged him to stand strong for the faith against false teachings, to endure hardship, and to preach the Word.
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6/17/2020
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Flight TPH01
Titus 1-3; Philemon
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Paul's brief letter to Titus focuses on Titus' role and responsibility in the organization and supervision of the churches in Crete. Throughout the letter, Paul also stressed the importance of sound doctrine and church order. In Philemon, on the other hand, the apostle took a more personal approach and spoke on the application of the great principles of Christian brotherhood to social life.
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6/24/2020
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Flight HEB01
Hebrews 1-13
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Although this well-written book's author is unknown, it reveals a man with a great desire to encourage Jewish believers to live in the grace of Jesus, especially since many of them were slipping back into the rites and rituals of Judaism to escape persecution. The letter centers on the person and work of Christ, inspiring believers through all the ages to pursue Jesus in every area of life.
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7/1/2020
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Flight JAM01
James 1-5
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While it's vital for Christians to understand that salvation comes by faith, the book of James emphasizes an active faith, characterized by good deeds that flow from salvation. In this unmistakably Jewish epistle, the author encourages believers to live out and grow in their faith by embracing trials, carefully controlling their speech, and letting God's love flow through them to others.
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7/15/2020
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Flight PET01
1 Peter 1-5; 2 Peter 1-3
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The apostle Peter wrote these letters to encourage persecuted Christians and to defend the authenticity of God's Word against false teaching that had infiltrated the church. He called on believers to grow in their faith so they might detect and combat the spreading apostasy. On this flight, we see how these letters uniquely encourage us as we live in conflict with our culture, giving us incentive for holy living as we look forward to Jesus' second coming.
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7/22/2020
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Flight 1JOH1
1 John 1-5
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In this letter, John lived up to his nickname—the apostle of love—as he urged the church to continue living a life of faith in Christ. He defended the nature of Jesus against heretical teachings and warned his readers about those who taught such things. John not only addressed the preeminence of God's love for us but also emphasized our duty to love others in return. This flight shows you how God can transform your life when you follow Him wholeheartedly.
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7/29/2020
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Flight JJU01
2 John, 3 John; Jude
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These three epistles were written to encourage the church to keep a strong biblical foundation. The authors exhorted believers to walk in love but to be discerning in their expression of love, to have and enjoy fellowship with other Christians, and to stay strong in the faith. On this flight, you'll discover why it's so vital to balance love and truth to reach a lost world with the gospel of Jesus.
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8/12/2020
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Flight REV02
Revelation 12-22
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In the second half of Revelation, we read some of the most thrilling text in the entire Bible, getting a preview of a future judgment, Jesus' thousand-year reign on earth, the eventual fate of unbelievers, and the church's eternal destination in the new heaven and earth. As we conclude our journey at 30,000 feet over the Scriptures, we discover how the history of the world culminates as we look to Jesus in all His splendid glory.
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8/19/2020
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Visit to the Cockpit Q&A with Pastor Skip
Skip Heitzig
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Message Summary
Our midweek series The Bible from 30,000 Feet came to a close with a final Visit to the Cockpit Q & A session. In the last message of our series, Pastor Skip answers questions from the congregation on topics throughout the Bible, from creation to the end times.
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There are 58 additional messages in this series.