April 23, 2023 Kevin Hobby


Ask them to turn to Acts 20:17–18, 22–27

 Question: “How does Revival come?”

In 1906, Baptist pastor Ernest Baker (one of the last students sent to South Africa by Charles Spurgeon in August of 1891)

published “The Revivals of the Bible.” And if one references revival-library.org  (where its contents are provided in full),

they'll see that it states, “Although many books deal with some Biblical revivals, (usually Pentecost), we have not found any

work which is as comprehensive as this one by Baker.”

With this in mind, take note of how Baker (i.e., a man who has, perhaps, written more extensively on this topic than any

other) answered the question:

“The saying of the Puritan John Robinson, to the effect, ‘God has more light and truth to break forth from His

Word,’ is one I am never tired of quoting.… To have our hearts and minds open to truths in the Word which our

interpretations have buried, to resuscitated truths, and to truths long hidden, is the secret of growth and revival.

… HOW DOES REVIVAL COME? It comes in many ways. But one way I want specially to emphasise: And

that is, that it comes by way of Truth that is preached with freshness, and which comes with freshness to the

hearer. The Reformation came about through the recovery of the doctrine of Justification by Faith.… Abiding

work is done in the lives of believers when any truth is made to live. And whenever any new truth comes to

light, or is recovered, it does not have to be preached at the expense of those truths that have already been shown

to have reviving power. It displaces no truth. It rather takes them all up, and brightens each with its new light.






REIGN WITH THE LORD JESUS. Second Coming Teaching has already familiarised believers with the truth

that we all have to appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ. The varying degrees of reward, and the possibility

of suffering loss have all been dwelt upon. But who has settled down to the task of learning from the Scriptures

what is the particular prize that is held out which the believer can lose whilst still retaining eternal life? And

who, seeing this, has yet girded himself to the task of making this truth clear to any section of God’s people?

Increasingly it stares me in the face, as I read the New Testament, that the Prize is the Reign, and that a share in

the Reign may be lost. It is this latter phase of the truth that has not been proclaimed. Speaking for and

concerning myself I think I can say that for years I have seen and taught that believers will share in the Reign.

But I have not taught that believers would, through unfaithfulness, be excluded from the Reign. This new light

broke on me some three and a half years ago. I began to preach it with both lip and pen. But I found it was a

thing that many very good people and good workers were not prepared to hear. That the Lord would refrain from

‘well done’ to some was accepted; but that He would ever say a hard thing at the judgment seat to a believer, or

that He would for a time exclude a believer from a share in the Reign, was something that should never be said.

The opposition I encountered made me go quietly for a time. But I have been digging and digging into the Word,

and I now know where I am, and I am praying that never again may I allow the testimony of the Word to be

quenched in me. This truth is possessing and kindling me, and the conviction is growing that if this is fearlessly

taught it will prove to be the truth that will stir believers out of their ease and smugness. We must learn to rightly

divide the Word of Truth. One division to be kept constantly before us is: the ‘Gift’ of ‘Eternal Life’ for sinners

to be received by faith; and a Place in the Millennial Kingdom for Believers as a REWARD for faithfulness.

Another way of putting it is: ‘the Gospel of the Grace’ of God for sinners; but ‘the Gospel of the Kingdom’ for

regenerate saints. Those who came out of Egypt with Moses came out by faith.… The Children of Israel had an

opportunity of entering Canaan; They refused. They fell in the wilderness.… They were excluded from Canaan;

1 Cor. 9: 24; 10: 1-11: and Hebrews chapters. 3. and 4. show that this is the danger facing the unfaithful believer:

exclusion from God’s rest, God’s Canaan, the Millennial earth, the reign of 1,000 years. ‘If we suffer with Him

we shall reign with Him.’ But if we do not suffer with Him shall we reign with Him? ‘To Him that overcometh

will I grant to sit with Me in My throne.’ But supposing we do not overcome?” —Ernest Baker (“A Gripping

Truth For Today,” The Dawn, April 1925)

• Ask them to turn to Matthew chapter 4 and Luke chapter 6

• Read Matthew 4:23–25; 5:1–3 and Luke 6:12–13, 17–20

“The plain here is really simply ‘a level place.’ So then the two accounts of Matthew and Luke will harmonize quite well. Jesus

first went up into the mountain to pray (Luke 6:12) and selected and instructed the Twelve. Afterwards he came down to a level

place on the mountain side whither the crowds had gathered, and stood there and wrought miracles (Luke 6:17). He then went

up a little higher into the mountain where he could sit down and see and teach the multitudes (Matt. 5:1).” —A. T. Robertson

Now, in comparing what we have read thus far, I want you to notice two things, (1) that the Sermon on the Mount is directed

to Christ's disciples and (2) that Matthew and Luke are using the terms “the kingdom of heaven” and “the kingdom of

God” interchangeably:

(Luke 6:20:) “And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is THE KINGDOM OF GOD.”

(Matthew 5:1b–3:) “And when he was set, his disciples came unto him: and he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.”

In relation to this topic, The Jewish New Testament Commentary written by Dr. David Harold Stern, (a Messianic Jewish

theologian of Israeli residence) in 1966 states the following:

“Long before Yeshua’s day … the word ‘Adonai’ had, out of respect, been substituted in speaking and in reading aloud for

God’s personal name, the four Hebrew letters yud-heh-vav-heh, variously written in English as … ‘Yahweh’ and ‘Jehovah.’ The

Talmud made it a requirement not to pronounce the Tetragrammaton … and this remains the rule in most modern Jewish

settings.… The word ‘Heaven’ was used in pious avoidance of the word ‘God’; and to this day Hebrew mal-khut ha-

Shammayim (‘Kingdom of Heaven’) substitutes in Jewish religious literature for ‘Kingdom of God,’ an expression found

frequently in the New Testament”

So now that we see that Scripture uses the terms “the kingdom of God” and “the kingdom of heaven” interchangeably,

now arises the question regarding what specifically do they they relate to. We find the answer in verse 5:

“Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.”

Therefore, entering the kingdom of God/heaven has nothing to do with going to heaven when you die, it has to do with the

reward of inheriting the earth during the coming kingdom of Christ. This is what Colossians 3:24 calls “the reward of the


And if we turn to The Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological, and Ecclesiastical Literature (originally published in 1867), it

states that, “There is reason to believe not only that the expression kingdom of heaven, as used in the New Test., was employed as

synonymous with kingdom of God, as referred to in the Old Test., but that the former expression had become common among the Jews of

our Lord's time for denoting the state of things expected to be brought in by the Messiah. The mere use of the expression as it first occurs

in Matthew, uttered apparently by John Baptist, and our Lord himself, without a note of explanation, as if all perfectly understood what

was meant by it, seems alone conclusive evidence of this.… It appears to have been in consequence of the phraseology thus introduced

and sanctioned by Daniel that the expression 'kingdom of heaven' ( י†מלכות†י†ה†מ†ש†י†מ†ם†ים†, mal-kuth ha-shamayim) passed into common usage

among the Jews.”

• Ask them to turn to Daniel 2:34–36, 44.

So we see that the Sermon on the Mount is directed to Christ's disciples and that it centers upon REWARDS (the word “reward”

is used nine times in Matthew's account alone) and entrance into or exclusion from the coming kingdom which Christ is going to

establish upon the earth.

Again, the kingdom of heaven does not take place in heaven but on earth. The coming kingdom is called the kingdom of God because

God will be the One Who establishes it, and it is called the kingdom of heaven because that is where God dwells, and thus the authority

upon which the kingdom will rest does not emanate from man, but from God (just as the stone that was “cut without hands,” it will not be

of human origin).

In like manner, Matthew 21 states that John's baptism was “from heaven.” This obviously does not mean that his baptism

took place in heaven, but that the authority upon which his baptism rested did not emanate from man, but from God.

“And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and

said, By what authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority? And Jesus answered and said unto them, I

also will ask you one thing, which if ye tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things. The baptism of

John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men? And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he

will say unto us, Why did ye not then believe him? But if we shall say, Of men; we fear the people; for all hold John as a prophet.

And they answered Jesus, and said, We cannot tell. And he said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these

things” (Matthew 21:24–27).

Did you hear that Charles Stanley passed away last Tuesday? He was the senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Atlanta for

49 years and the founder and president of In Touch Ministries. In chapter 5 of his book "Eternal Security: Can You Be

Sure?," he wrote:

“Jesus concluded his parable [that is, the parable of the talents in Matthew 25] and added that the slave was cast out

into the outer darkness. Then referring to the actual place, which the ‘outer darkness’ in the parable refers to, Jesus

stated, ‘In that place there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ … Whereas two of the slaves were given more

responsibility, the third one was thrown out of the house. But what actual place was Jesus referring to in the

parable? He gave us only one hint: ‘In that place there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ … The kingdom of

God will not be the same for all believers. Let me put it another way. Some believers will have rewards for their

earthly faithfulness; others will not. Some believers will be entrusted with certain privileges; others will not. Some

will reign with Christ; others will not (see 2 Tim. 2:12). Some will be rich in the kingdom of God; others will be

poor (see Luke 12:21, 33). Some will be given heavenly treasures of their own; others will not (see Like 16:12).

Some will reign and rule with Christ; others will not (see Rev. 3:21). A careful study of these passages reveals one

common denominator. Privilege in the kingdom of God is determined by one’s faithfulness in this life.… Where is

this place represented by the ‘outer darkness’ in Jesus' parables? To be in the ‘outer darkness’ is to be in the

kingdom of God but outside the circle of men and women whose faithfulness on this earth earned them a special

rank or position of authority.”

But if we reference the parable of the talents and the parable of the pounds, we'll find that when the Lord “returned, having

received the kingdom,” not only was the wicked servant entirely stripped of even that which had previously been entrusted

unto him and cast into outer darkness, but we also find that the faithful servants, alone, entered into the joy of their Lord

(cf. Hebrews 12:2; Revelation 3:21–22) to reign over cities. The wicked servants were neither granted authority nor

entrance! (cf. Luke 19:15,17,19,24; Matthew 25:21,23,28,30).

I. M. Haldeman who, for over forty years was the pastor of the First Baptist Church in New York City, and of whom Bible scholar James

M. Gray, the president of Moody Bible Institute in the early 1900s wrote, “So far as my knowledge extends, Dr. Haldeman is the greatest

prophet of the Lord now standing in any pulpit in this country.”

• Read Matthew 5:19–20 (ref. Matthew 6:1–6, 16–18)

Again, the common thesis is that all believers will enter into the kingdom when Christ returns, though their rank will be

determined in accordance with their works. Yet, regarding the matter of rank in the kingdom, we find multiple examples of

the disciples reasoning and disputing on this very topic.

For instance, on one occasion Christ asked them, “What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way? But they held

their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest” (Mark 9:33–34). And we also see that

“there arose a reasoning among them, which of them should be greatest.… And there was also a strife among them, which of them

should be accounted the greatest” (Luke 9:46; 22:24). But when the disciples brought the question “unto Jesus, saying, Who is the

greatest in the kingdom” we find that He “said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children [that is,

unless you adopt an attitude of meekness and humility], ye shall not enter into the kingdom” (Matthew 18:1–3).

• Read Matthew 7:13–14

“strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life [in the millennial kingdom, cf. Luke 20:35–36;

Philippians 3:10–15; Hebrews 11:35;12:9; Revelation 20:4–6] and few there be that find it” (Matthew 7:14b).

It's worth pointing out that Christ does not refer to the gate as being “straight” (i.e., without a curve or bend), but as “strait”

(i.e., characterized by a specified degree of trouble or difficulty). And while believers do not have to undergo any difficulties

in order to be eternally saved (a free gift), Scripture clearly teaches that “we must through much tribulation enter into the

kingdom of God [a reward according to works]” (Acts 14:22b).

Also, if you reference a parallel passage in Luke 13:24, you'll note that Christ states that one must “strive [Gk. agōnizomai]

to enter in at the strait gate.” We gain or English word “agonize” from the Greek word “agōnizomai;” thus, this word is also

associated with works and effort! And eternal salvation is “not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:9).

A believer does not have to strive to be eternally saved (a free gift), yet they do have to strive to enter into the coming

kingdom to reign with Christ (a reward).

Moreover, note how this word is used within Scripture:

“Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And

every man that striveth for the mastery [Gk. agōnizomai] is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a

corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible … but I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by

any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway [Gk. adokimos, unapproved for the

prize]” (1 Corinthians 9:24-27).

“I have fought [Gk. agōnizomai] a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is

laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at THAT DAY: and not

to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7–8).

Paul agonized (i.e., exerted great effort) in this race so that he would receive this prize/crown rather than being unapproved

for it at the judgement seat of Christ. Note also, that the crown is for those who love Christ's appearing. These are the ones

who are eager to reign with Christ in his coming kingdom (a reward) and exert great effort toward this end.

• Read Matthew 7:15–20 (ref. 2 Peter 2, “bought” [1 Corinthians 6:20; 7:23] and “washed”)

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves”

(Matthew 7:15).

From this passage, it should be apparent that false prophets do not necessarily give themselves away by their external

behavior. In fact, Christ outlines that they can actually dress like sheep. That is, viewed from the outside they can have good

works—not behaving like the wolves that they actually are. Thus the only way that you can know who they are is by their


“Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree

bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit” (Matthew 7:16,17).

Question: What does a person gather from a teacher? Do they gather works from a teacher, or do they gather teachings

from a teacher?

When one listens to a teacher, they do so in order to learn what the teacher is presenting.

A good tree is a metaphor for a true prophet,and a corrupt tree is a metaphor for a false prophet, and fruit is a metaphor for

the message of the prophets. A true prophet (i.e., good tree) will have a true message (i.e., good fruit), but a false prophet

(i.e., corrupt tree) will have a false message (i.e., evil fruit). As the previous verse warns us, detecting false prophets has

nothing to do with their works (i.e., their outward appearance). On the contrary, it has to do with their doctrine.

The reason that we are told to beware of false prophets, is because since they look good on the outside, we might be

deceived into thinking that their message must be true.

• Read Luke 6:43-45

We must listen to what their “mouth speaketh” (i.e., their doctrine). If their doctrine (i.e., fruit) lines up with the Word of God, then they

are a true prophet (i.e., good tree); however, if their doctrine (i.e., fruit) does not line up with the Word of God, then they are a false

prophet (i.e., corrupt tree).

Paul had many good works, yet the Bereans didn't just automatically believe his message because he had good works; they searched the

scriptures to see if Paul's message lined up with the Word of God, and that is why scripture refers to them as noble. In 1 John 4:1 we are

told “believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” Yet it

does not tell us to test by looking at works, but by looking to see if the message lines up with the Word of God (1 John 4:2,3). Therefore

we have a responsibility to study to shew ourselves approved unto God “a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the

word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15b).

“To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).

“Its fruit discloses the cultivation of a tree; so a person's speech discloses the cultivation of his mind” (Sirach 27:6 written by

Jewish scribe Ben Sira between 200 and 175 BC).

“The wayside of history, is strewn with the wreckage of supernatural seduction. Again and again disciples have vainly relied

upon that which is no test – their standing, their holiness, their experience, their invocations of the Blood, etc., - instead of on

the only God-given criterion, the applied Word of God. Spirit after spirit has slipped past the imagined tests put by those whom

they have subdued with the most monstrous claims. . . . This was the downfall of Prince of the Agapemone, once an ardent and

devoted evangelical clergyman. He asserted at last, under the direction of his controlling spirit whom he mistook for the Holy

Ghost:- ‘In me you see Christ in the flesh; by me, and in me, God has redeemed all flesh from death.’” —D. M. Panton (Tests

for the Supernatural)

• Read Matthew 7:21-23 (the phrase, “that day” is a reference to the judgment seat of Christ)

“I have fought [Gk. agōnizomai] a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me

a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at THAT DAY: and not to me only, but unto all

them also that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7–8).

Eariler in 2 Timothy Paul wrote:

“The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain: but, when he

was in Rome, he sought me out very diligently, and found me. The Lord grant unto him that he may find mercy of the Lord in

THAT DAY: and in how many things he ministered unto me at Ephesus, thou knowest very well” (2 Timothy 1:16–18).

“Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy [When? In ‘that day.’]” (Matthew 5:7).

Many eternally saved believers will say to Christ at His judgment seat, “Lord, Lord, have we not…in thy name done many wonderful

works?” Yet Christ will reply, “I never knew you.” This mature knowing is associated with sharing in Christ's sufferings and was

expressed as the longing of Paul:

“That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable

unto his death; if by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead [i.e., the “better resurrection” spoken of

Hebrews 11:35 and “the first resurrection” spoken of Revelation 20:6].… I press toward the mark [i.e., the finish line] for the

PRIZE of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus [ref. 1 Corinthians 9:24–27]. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect [i.e.,

mature: 1 Corinthians 2:6–7], be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you”

(Philippians 3:10–11, 14–15).

“If we [believers] suffer [with Christ], we shall also reign with him [in His millennial kingdom]: if we deny him [relative to

suffering on His behalf], he also will deny us [relative to reigning with Him].… Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus

shall suffer persecution ” (2 Timothy 2:12; 3:12).

“The conformity with the sufferings of Christ implies not only the endurance of persecution for His name, but all pangs and all

afflictions undergone in the struggle against sin either within or without.” —J. B. Lightfoot (1828–1889)

Christ is here teaching that not every eternally saved believer will enter the kingdom of a thousand years (a reward).

“The result of believers appearing before the judgment seat of Christ will be twofold. Some will be accounted worthy, and

some will be judged unworthy to enter into the millennial kingdom. You see, not everyone who says ‘Lord, Lord’ shall enter in

(Matt. 7:21).… There are two Gospels spoken of in the Word. One is the Gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20:24). Acceptance

of this Gospel knits one to justification and eternal life (Eph. 2:8). The other is the Gospel of the kingdom (Lk. 9:1–6), which

pertains to how one gains entrance into the kingdom and is based upon sanctification (Lk. 16:16).” —Robert Govett (1813–1901)