In the last lesson, we learned why we need religion. Today’s lesson will cover what is the religion.
When it is written in Chinese character, religion(宗敎) means the highest teaching. It’s about teaching the highest teaching, the word of God. God is word (Jn1:1), therefore, the owner of religion is God.
There are two kinds of teaching in the religion and each teaching is for a different level of the believers. There’s “elementary teaching” like milk for an infant, and “perfect teaching” like solid food for a mature person (Heb 5:12-14). Each teaching refers to the law and Revelation. Both teachings are vital for the believers, but the elementary teaching is given to understand and to follow the perfect teaching.
Then, what will each teaching cover?
Before Jesus came, Israelites learned and kept Moses’ law. That was only elementary teaching. After Jesus’ First Coming, Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies and taught the revealed word of the fulfillment of the prophecies. That’s the perfect teaching at the First Coming.
In Jesus’ Second Coming, people were taught the word revealed at the First Coming, which was elementary teaching at the Second Coming. When Jesus returns and fulfills the book of Revelation, the fulfillment of the New Testament prophecies will be the perfect teaching at the Second Coming.
The two kinds of teaching are important, but WHO’s teaching? God created the spiritual world and physical world, then the spiritual, physical beings that belong to each realm. Both realms have two kingdoms: Heaven and Hell. Both kingdoms have their workers in the physical realm. They spread the word through their pastors.
From time to time in the Bible, there are three types of the pastor: prophetic pastors, promised pastors, and general pastors. Prophetic pastors are God’s chosen pastors who prophesy the future event about the appearance of the promised pastors. Promised pastors are God’s chosen pastors who will be God’s messengers. They teach fulfillment of the prophecies. Lastly, general pastors testify about Jesus and the fulfillment of the Old testament.
The Bible is divided into Old Covenant and New Covenant. Old Covenant was made between God and physical Israelites (Ex19:5-6) using the blood of animals. Israelites promised to keep God’s word but broke the Covenant by worshiping other gods.
After the first covenant was broken, God prophesied that a new covenant will be made (Jer 31:31-33, Heb 8:7).
Jesus came and fulfilled this prophecy by making New Covenant with Jesus’ blood (Lk 22:14-20). Jesus once taught that whoever eats Jesus’ flesh and blood gains eternal life. He said because he is the word (1Jn 1:1) and the fulfillment of the Old Testament.
The reason why God’s chosen people keep breaking the promises that were made with God is that they were born with a sinful gene – Adam’s seed. God’s children were supposed to live forever, but we die at some point (Ps 82:6-7). It was because God left in Gn 6:1-3 when he saw sons of God got married daughters of men. That’s when God’s children became mortals. To live with God forever, we need to find where God is – the kingdom of heaven. Jesus says to Nicodemus that no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again with water and spirit. Water is a parable to God’s word (Dt 32:2), so the believers who seek the kingdom of heaven ought to be born again with God’s word and spirit. This word can be taught by God’s messenger.
At the First Coming, Jesus came and taught the opened scroll of the Old Testament prophecies (Is 29:9-14, Mt 11:27).
At the Second Coming, there’ll be Jesus’ messenger who will teach the opened scroll of the New Testament prophecies (Rv 22:16, Rv 5:, Rv 10:).
Do you know this messenger? How can you find the messenger? When a person claims themselves as Jesus’ promised pastor, how can you recognize them? You have to test the spirit (1Jn 4:1), or you’ll be deceived (Mt 24:4). We’ll teach you how to test the spirit in people soon.
See you in the next lesson!