HEBREWS 01  Only Christ can be elevated

The whole of the first Chapter is exalting Jesus and separating Him as being far above any of the great prophets of old.

First published on the 22nd of October 2022 — Last updated on the 4th of February 2023

Old Testament prophets are only a reflection of Christ

HEBREWS 1:1   God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,

“Sundry” is a word that is difficult to define exactly. It refers to a collection of different times, way back, when God allowed unusual events to happen. These events did not seem to be specifically related to each other and would not seem to have a deeper meaning that could be discerned at the time.

Abraham carried the fire up mount Moriah but made his son Isaac carry the wood. A ram trapped behind them on mount Calvary saved Isaac’s life.

Moses hit the rock once to produce water. But when he hit the rock twice then God did not allow him to enter the Promised Land.

Samson destroyed more of the enemy when he killed himself.

David ate the shewbread that was only for the priests. Yet God did not punish him.

Elijah was the only prophet to go back to mount Horeb where the first exodus started with the sign of a natural bush burning with a supernatural fire that never consumed it.

After Elijah went up to Heaven, Elisha cursed 42 little children who called him bald but mocked him.

ECCLESIASTES 11:2   Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

So, what were these different events trying to tell us?

They are part of a secret code that represents various details in the future unfolding of God’s salvation Plan.

Can we crack this code?

We can only do that if we can find the fulfillment of these events in the New Testament.

“Divers manners” refers to the different manner in which each prophet brought forth God’s Word either in his speech or in his actions. Each one was helping to set the scene. Messiah had to come and fulfill all these events either in His own Life or in that of His church and the end-time Jews.

Without Messiah and then His church and finally the 144000 Jews, all these events would have no deeper meaning.

The Jews of the Old Testament were the shadow or outline of a much deeper Plan.

But the New Testament Plan has to fulfill all these events at a deeper level and stay within the outline or shadow of the Old Testament events.

Isaac symbolized Christ carrying the wooden cross up mount Calvary. But Isaac went up mount Moriah so he did not have to die. The ram was trapped behind Abraham on mount Calvary and had to die in Isaac’s place. Christ was trapped by the fact that only He was the Messiah and only He could buy forgiveness of our sins. So He had to die to save us. Only the ram had to die. The ram thus represents the coming of the Lord.


Moses hit the rock once to symbolize Jesus as a Man being struck on Calvary. The water of Life flowed from His side. When Moses hit the rock twice, the first hit was fine. That represented Jesus as a Man hit on Calvary for our human sins. The second hit represented Jesus as the Word of God being struck and crucified at the Council of Nicaea in AD 325 when the unscriptural Trinity was introduced. This opened the door to a flood of unscriptural ideas that moved away from the doctrine of the apostles and took the world into the darkness of the Dark Ages.  The Dark Ages where truth died after Nicaea lasted about 1200 years. These 1200 years firmly cemented the Trinity belief into church  beliefs as the Bible truth died out of the church.

By 1520 Trinity was so firmly in people’s brains that even the brave Martin Luther never tackled that subject. The church continued with Trinity.

ACTS 17:30   And the times of this ignorance God winked at;

God ignored this error until He began to reveal the truth of the Godhead around 1900.

After 1900 the Oneness Pentecostal movement began to restore the fact that Jesus is Lord God Almighty. William Branham in America then gave a clearer description of this Godhead issue when he revealed the hidden mysteries of Scripture.

The saved Trinitarian church-goers that ignored this revelation of the Godhead will not be prepared for the Coming of the Lord Jesus and will perish in great Tribulation instead of being caught up to meet Jesus in the air.


Samson represents us as individuals who are inspired by God’s Spirit. We serve God best when we die to self.

Christ is King in the Millennium as the Son of David. Christ was anointed as King on the banks of Jordan but will only become King when the final man of sin, the last Pope, is destroyed at Armageddon. In the meanwhile, Christ serves as the High Priest of the Gentile church.

Christ’s ministry was symbolized by David who was anointed as king as a teenager. But, David could not become king until his enemy, king Saul, had been killed. Thus in between those two events, David was able to play the part of a priest eating the shewbread as that symbolizes Christ's ministry as the High Priest of the order of Melchizedek.


MATTHEW 17:11    And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.

The spirit of Elijah has to come on a Gentile prophet at the end of the church ages.

Elijah restoring the original apostolic truth in the last church age for the third exodus. The first exodus was to get the Jews out of Egypt. The second exodus brought the church out of the Jews under the apostles until the church got fooled by Trinity in AD 325. The third exodus brings the Bride out of the church and takes them back to the original truths of the New Testament apostles.

The end-time Elijah prophet has a high altitude natural sign together with a high altitude supernatural sign. Twenty six miles above the ground, two incredibly high clouds were seen above Flagstaff City in Arizona on 28 February 1963. A large cloud formed of angels' wings and a smaller smoke cloud.

Rain clouds do not form above 12 miles from the ground.

MATTHEW 24:30   And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven:

The sign of the Son of man was a supernatural cloud formed by seven angel’s wings. It was accompanied by a smaller natural smoke cloud formed by a high-altitude rocket that had exploded earlier above Vandenberg Airforce Base in California. The natural and the supernatural clouds combined to make the third exodus sign.

ACTS 2:19    And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:

Water vapour makes a rain cloud. Smoke vapour makes a high-altitude smoke cloud.

Eight days later those same 7 angels met brother Branham at Sunset Peak secretly. There they gave him the commission to reveal the Seven Seals.

From 17 March to 24 March he revealed the Seven Seals which unfolded the Bible mysteries. These revealed mysteries enable the Bride to understand the Bible mysteries that were first taught by the apostles to the New Testament church. We are the spiritual children coming out of the modern churches that are described as blind and asleep and returning to the apostolic fathers’ beliefs. William Branham is the end time Elijah who showed us how to understand the mysteries of Scripture that he revealed. Back to the beliefs of the early church apostles who facilitated the exodus of the church out of the Jews.

Saint Paul, the tent maker, sewed together Law and Grace to guide the second exodus. We have to return back to his teachings.


In this incident where he cursed the children, Elisha symbolizes the future prophet Elijah to the Jews during the future great Tribulation. His minstry only began after Elijah was caught up to Heaven, which synbolizes the catching up to Heaven of the Bride at the Coming of the Lord. Elisha cursed 42 little children. 42 months is the length of great Tribulation. All the saved Christians who miss the Coming of the Lord end up in great Tribulation where they are cursed to die. The little children are the end-time churchgoers who never went up to meet the Lord in the air when He returned. These are the foolish virgins. Whatever you do wrong, it sits on your conscience. So, when the churchgoers realize they have missed out on being caught up to heaven, then they will realize that they have believed something wrong. It compensate for their own errors, they mock the Jewish prophet as if he had also missed out by not being caught up to Heaven. They do not realize that his ministry is to the 144000 Jews during Tribulation time.

As foolish virgins who are saved from hell, they thought they would be ready for the Coming of the Lord.

No. They need to be able to understand and obey the King James Bible and believe that it is perfect.

PHILIPPIANS 2:12   … work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

Your works cannot save you from hell. But saved people need hard work to establish the truth so that they can be saved from the 3.5 years of Great Tribulation that is coming in the future.

They call him bald. “Bald” is an old English word that means “white”. The bald-headed eagle is white-headed, the symbol of North America. That is where the end-time Elijah-prophet to the Gentiles came from, who is William Branham, whose revelations allowed the Bride to understand the King James Bible. The Bride needs these revelations to return to the beliefs of the New Testament apostles. Thus, brother Branham, after the New Testament resurrection, will be caught up to Heaven with the living Bride and the resurrected Bride. This was symbolized by Elijah going up to Heaven in a chariot.

To their shock, the end-time little children, the foolish virgins, are then cursed. Jesus gets off the Mercy Seat when He comes to fetch His Bride. Thus, mercy will be over at that time. The little children, who are the end-time churchgoers that are left behind, are doomed to a terrible death.

The big bear today is Russia. Daniel saw the future Muslim nations as countries in the Persian world empire that was represented as a bear. Brother Branham predicted that Russian nuclear missiles will destroy America. The Muslims will also attack and destroy the foolish virgins during great Tribulation.


ECCLESIASTES 11:2   Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth.

We do not fully understand the evil that goes on behind the scenes today due to the many antichrist spirits that are controlling individuals and world events.

Two groups can help us in our search for truth.

Seven means completion. Seven days complete a week.

Eight then means a new system. The New Testament is a new system of grace. So, where does 8 come into the New Testament?

MICAH 5:5   And this man shall be the peace, when the Assyrian shall come into our land: and when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men.

The Assyrian is the very cruel enemy, representing the Devil.

“Tread in our palaces” means that the Devil takes over the leadership of the church.

Satan entered Judas, a church leader.

To combat Satan’s evil as he shrewdly corrupts the church with unscriptural ideas like Trinity, Christmas, 25 December, and Good Friday, God raised up 7 messengers to guide the church closer to the truth. Each age had one messenger. The best-known messenger was Martin Luther to the fifth church age. He restored the idea of salvation by grace through faith alone as well as the priesthood of believers.

Saint Paul was the messenger to the first church age.

Brother Branham was the messenger to the last church age who was to restore us back to the teachings of the New Testament apostles.

MATTHEW 17:11   And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.

Why is the first church age so important?

“The eight principal men” are the main men in the Christian church. They are the eight men who wrote the new Plan of salvation, the New Testament.

  1. Matthew
  2. Mark
  3. Acts
  4. John, I John.  II John.  III John.  Revelation   (5 Books)
  5. Paul    From Romans to Hebrews   (14 Books.  This is half of the New Testament’s 27 Books)
  6. James
  7. Peter
  8. Jude

These are the main men. We have to agree with them in all respects. We cannot contradict them.

Hebrews is thus one of the deepest Books in the Bible as Paul finds the fulfillment of the Old Testament episodes in the Life of Christ and the church. God cut off the Jews when He turned to the Gentiles. But equally, at His Second Coming God will cut off the saved foolish virgins when He turns back to the Jews.

We need to search the Old Testament for clues that illuminate God’s great Plan of Salvation.

The Aaronic priesthood and its animal sacrifices ended

Christ is far above every single human being and He never changes.

HEBREWS 1:2   Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

Enough clues are hidden away in the Old Testament to create an effective shadow or outline for the New Testament events. We cannot interpret the New Testament in any way that contradicts the events of the Old Testament. Law and Grace have to be sewn together by that master tent-maker, the apostle Paul. The New Testament fulfills the Old Testament by magnifying the Law.

The Aaronic priesthood and its animal sacrifices ended when Jesus died as His body became the Temple.

DANIEL 9:27   And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease,

Christ's 3.5 year ministry confirmed the first half of the sacrificial covenant that God had made with Abraham and his seed. The two prophets Moses and Elijah, in the 3.5 year grat Tribulation, will complete the week. Christ's supreme death ended the animal sacrifices in the Temple as Christ became the sacrificial Lamb.
MATTHEW 12:6   But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.

JOHN 2:19   Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

Jesus became the High Priest, and He became the supreme Sacrifice.

The good lawful works of the Jews as they sought to save themselves ended because it is now only the good works of Jesus on our behalf that can save us.

Jesus made our world and the surrounding worlds or planets.

If He made the world we live in, and made us from its dust, then we should let Him have full control of our lives.

Jesus is the heir of all things. Evil will be destroyed and Jesus will own everything. So, we would be very silly not to be in full subjection to Him.

With the whole Old Testament as an outline of the Life of Jesus and His church, then no one else can fulfill the complexities of God’s Plan. Then suddenly, Jesus appeared on the scene in the small and remote Roman province of Palestine.

Born poverty-stricken in a stable and fleeing for His Life as a two-year-old Child. Growing up in the remote town of Nazareth which is not even mentioned in the Old Testament. He never wrote anything down, except for a few lines in the dust. As King, He borrowed an ass (a donkey) and her colt for His triumphal yet very humble ride on Palm Sunday. The crowd that hailed Him on Sunday, yelled for His death on Thursday. He had a group of 11 disciples and one devil. He owned little more than His clothes. A Roman governor found Him innocent but still gave Him a death sentence. Deserted by His disciples He suffered the cruelest death imaginable. His amazing and helpful Life earned Him much hatred and rejection from those He came to help. It seemed like His ministry in a physical Body had failed.

But His lowliness had fooled the Devil into making Jesus pay the price for sin.

I CORINTHIANS 2:8    Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

The Holy Spirit in Jesus became the Holy Ghost when the Spirit left His Body as He died.

Then He did something unique that nobody else could do. He resurrected from the dead in an immortal Body of nail-scarred flesh.

Now, in the spiritual world, He arose like a burning-bright and glorious sun. He could offer a free redemption from hell. The tables had turned. People no longer had to work for salvation, Jesus had done the necessary works for them. As the Holy Ghost, Jesus could now come into the hearts of believers to guide and strengthen them by taking away their desire to sin and then giving them an understanding of the truth.

JOHN 16:13   Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth:

As a Man Jesus reveals the full glory of God

HEBREWS 1:3   Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;

The full glory of God rests on Jesus because Jesus is the fulness of the Godhead expressed as a Man.

God is invisible and God has no shape, thus God does not have a right hand.

COLOSSIANS 2:9   For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

JOHN 5:37    And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time,

nor seen his shape.

JOHN 1:18   No man hath seen God at any time;

the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

The right hand of an invisible God does not speak of a position that cannot be seen, but speaks of power.

When the boss says, “My right-hand man”, that does not tell you where the man stands, but tells you of his power in the company.

We were purged of sin by a cross-over process if we believe. Our sin will cross over onto Christ and His innocence will cross over onto us.

HEBREWS 1:4   Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.

The sight of an angel really imprsses us humans. But Paul now uplifts Jesus above all the angels.

God was a Pillar of Fire in the Old Testament. Then God came down and became a Man, Jesus. Then Jesus ascended back to Heaven and can project His Spirit back down as a Pillar of Fire again. Paul saw this Pillar of Fire when he was on the road to Damascus.

Because Jesus is God in the Flesh, He is far better than any angel can ever be. Jesus can clothe Himself in an angelic body and then come down as the Angel of the Lord, Michael the Archangel. That makes Him the supreme Angel.

His inheritance is the promises and prophecies of the Old Testament, revealed by the prophets in their statements and the events of their lives.

Each prophet revealed a part of Christ’s ministry.

Christ fulfilled all the prophecies of all the prophets. It is absolutely impossible for any human to achieve that. Christ has to be more than a Man. More than an angel. He has to be God Himself.

Jonah acted out the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus when a whale swallowed him and vomited him up three days later. Then Jonah went to preach to the Gentiles in Nineveh and led the biggest revival in the Old Testament. This symbolized Jesus turning to the Gentiles after His resurrection. Millions of Gentiles would repent and accept Jesus as their Saviour during the seven church ages.

Jonah left an “empty” whale and Jesus left an empty tomb as the sign of His first Coming.

The miracle of Jonah also indicates to us that God calls us and deals with us as individuals. Individuals that are rejected by those around them.

Another clue to the future of the church is that Jonah was endlessly complaining. As humans, we Gentiles do not like God’s Plan as God thinks differently from what we think.

When things go wrong we Christians are endlessly asking, “Why?” That is just an expression of unbelief. A desire to argue with God.

ROMANS 8:28    And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

If we complain then we do not love God. It simply means we are on a path of our own choosing and that we have not been called according to the purpose of God.

Even Jesus begged God to ask if there was no another way. Such was the shock of His righteous mind when the slithering and filthy tide of our human sin began to descend on Him as our Scapegoat Who would carry our sins far away down to hell. But Jesus quickly resigned Himself to God’s Will. Humans must be guided by Scripture, not by their emotions.

Jesus was the Man in Whom all of God dwelled. And only God Himself could pay the penalty for death.

ISAIAH 55:8   For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. Thereby He took our sins upon Himself that we might be the righteousness of God through Him.

Angels cannot be sons of God

HEBREWS 1:5   For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?

No angel was ever called a son of God.

Angels were created at the beginning as bloodless creatures with Eternal life. There is no blood in Heaven.

I CORINTHIANS 15:50   Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God;

Nowhere does the Bible say that angels are able to create physical bodies for themselves.

GENESIS 6:2   That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.

Sons of God cannot be angels. Fallen angels are demons. The Bible never uses the expression “fallen angels”. The sons of God were the descendants of Adam. The daughters of men were the descendants of Cain, the seed of the serpent.

HEBREWS 1:6   And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him.

Jesus was the first perfect Man to be born of a woman. The angels were present at His birth. Angels are angelic beings but they all have to worship Jesus. Jesus is the supreme Being.

One day He will speak His dead saints out from the dust in their perfect, immortal, and blood-free bodies.

HEBREWS 1:7   And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire.

The angels are God’s workers in the higher spiritual dimension.

Those who serve God are ministers who require the flame of the fire of the Holy Spirit in order to serve God properly. It is God operating through them.

The throne of God is the human heart

HEBREWS 1:8   But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.

God’s throne is occupied by Jesus as He is God hidden in flesh. The scepter is the symbol of ruling. God rules because of His righteousness.

God’s throne in Heaven is surrounded by four beasts.

REVELATION 4:6   And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind.

Eyes speak of intelligence. “Before” means they know the future and “behind” means they know the past.

REVELATION 4:7   And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle.

God’s throne on earth is the human heart where the four chambers represent the four beasts as Christ rules in a repentant heart.

HEBREWS 1:9   Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.

Righteousness is what God loves.

This is the kind of life that we will live when Jesus rules our hearts.

True righteousness is having faith in God’s Word and believing what is written.

ROMANS 4:3   For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Our faith is not what we do.

Our faith is believing in what Christ did for us and will continue to do for us.

HEBREWS 1:10   And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:

Christ laid the foundation of the world. To us, that is mysterious as we do not even really know what the foundation of the world is. Paul is thus telling us to rely on Christ because right at the beginning He was already doing physical things that were beyond our comprehension.

Even today, scientists still do not know what energy is. We do not know what time is. Robert Oppenheimer, the father of the atomic bomb, when asked what an atom was, replied, "Something unknown is doing, we don’t know what.”

Astronomers say that 95% of our universe is Dark Matter and Dark Energy.

“Dark” means that they do not have the faintest clue what it is.

So, we can only see 5% of the Universe. And there are many puzzles out there that astronomers are trying hard to understand.

Yet it was Jesus Who made all this right at the beginning. Thus He knows infinitely more than all the scientists because He also made the spiritual Heavens that are in a higher dimension and thus totally beyond our ability to understand.

Scientists say that the men who wrote the Bible were ignorant. It is the other way around. There is so much that the scientists know nothing about, including life after death. Yet Bible prophecies are coming to pass like the Jews returning to Israel after almost 2000 years. So, Whoever wrote those prophecies, knew what He was talking about. Yet, scientists today are disowning the Big Bang theory of creation that they invented around the 1960s.

Scientific theories fade and perish with time. Thirty years ago "String Theory" was the hottest property in Physics to describe how atoms and gravity work. Today we no longer read of String Theory in the news. In thirty years it has proven nothing.

HEBREWS 1:11   They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment;

Both the scientists and the atheists will perish together with the physical world that they occupy.

But Jesus Christ remains unchanging. The New Testament that Paul and the apostles wrote can never change. At the end we must get back to believing what they believed at the beginning. The apostles are our spiritual fathers and we at the end-time are their spiritual children.

MATTHEW 17:11   And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.

We, the end-time children must be restored back to the New Testament apostolic fathers. The main ministry of the American William Branham was to achieve that.

Human ideas got into the Jewish faith and corrupted the Jews.

Human opinions got into the Gentile church and corrupted them. Humans just cannot produce something that lasts. We need the correct input from God. But what God wants is different to what we think, so we reject His ideas.

Human church systems are all doomed

HEBREWS 1:12   And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.

The Jewish religious system required big changes. But the Jews were not listening when Jesus came along. Huge changes came almost 37 years later when the Roman soldiers razed Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple. The priests and Pharisees and Sadducees were folded up and put into the waste basket or scrap heap of human history. Jewish religion changed as men declared themselves to be Rabbis and the Jewish religion fundamentally changed as there was no Temple and thus no sacrifices.

The Jews thus continued with an essentially empty man-made set of traditions which is just spiritual desolation.

But Jesus Christ was the proper High Priest.

HEBREWS 3:1   Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;

There was a priesthood of believers.

I PETER 2:9   But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood,

All priests are equal. Only the High Priest is above a priest. Thus there were no elevated ministries. No Nicolaitans who elevated a holy man above the laity or congregation.

His sacrifice as the Passover Lamb ended the Temple sacrifices. Thus, in Jesus, the Old Testament sacrifices found their permanent fulfilment. His sacrifice for sin would never change.

Two thousand years later the key to Heaven would still be:

ACTS 2:38   Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

ACTS 2:39   For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

Angels are not above us they are servants for the Bride

HEBREWS 1:13   But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?

No angel was ever promoted to be God’s right-hand person. Angels have no blood and thus could not shed their blood for the sins of mankind. Angels have power but cannot save people from their sins.

HEBREWS 1:14    Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?

Angels are like oxen. Powerful creatures who serve man and thereby increase the effectiveness of human efforts.

Humans who are saved are higher than angels even though angels are more powerful than humans. Because only men and women, who have blood in their veins, can be heirs of the salvation that was bought by the shed blood of Jesus. Angels are the invisible servants of mankind.

God sent an angel to Paul to help him on the sinking ship.

God sent an angel to Paul to help him understand the truth for his day. That enabled Paul to become the angel or messenger to the first church age of Ephesus.


“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.” — 1 Corinthians 16:23