John's Gospel only has 7 miracles, part 1
We update studies as the Lord Jesus leads us. You can find the latest update of this study at ChurchAges.net
The first miracle was at a wedding. Water became wine. The last miracle at the Wedding Feast. Bodies become immortal.First published on the 9th of September 2019 — Last updated on the 26th of January 2021
JOHN 21:25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.
Jesus performed many, many miracles which greatly helped countless people but they were temporary. The people who were healed and helped, which was wonderful, eventually grew old and died. That is why there was no great benefit in recording all those great deeds. They played a no deeper part in the plan of eternity. They just helped the people of that day which was very fortunate for them.
But John’s Gospel presents Jesus as God, the great flying Eagle.
Thus John is looking for the miracles that reflect a much deeper pattern of God’s plan for mankind.
Look at the Tabernacle worship of the Jews.
In this Jewish worship, God was actually looking ahead to the seven church ages of the Gentile church that were represented by the seven-branched candlesticks.
Then, in the end, He would turn to the 12 tribes of Israel in the Tribulation and call out the 144000 Jews. There will be 12000 from each tribe. This is represented by the 12 loaves of shewbread.
The 7 Gentile church ages and the return of Jesus to the 12 tribes of Israel in the Tribulation are the great mysteries that were hidden from the Jews in the Old Testament. Yet these two patterns were part of the Tabernacle worship.
So, we look for these two patterns to repeat in many different parts of the Word of God.
Let us have a brief look into Heaven.
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 and behind” means they know the future and they know the past.
These bodyguards are there to protect the true church during the 2000 years of church history that has been divided up into seven church ages.
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.
Four guards are around God’s throne.
Let us look at the four Gospels. These are the very heart of God’s salvation plan.
Each Gospel corresponds to a bodyguard.
Each bodyguard is a basic characteristic of Jesus. He has four distinct ways in which He fights for and secures the earthly deliverance of His church.
Matthew shows Christ as the Lion, the King of the beasts. Jesus is the great King.
Mark shows Jesus as the young Ox, the Servant Who is obedient unto death. The Servant Who carried our sins far away down to hell to dump them on the Devil.
Luke shows Jesus as the Ideal Man. Born in poverty in a stinking stable. Dying a cruel undeserved death and yet able to take His mind off His own problems and save an undeserving sinner on the nearby cross. Poor and yet compassionate to sinners make Him an ideal Man Who understands the suffering masses.
John sees Jesus as the flying Eagle, God Himself as the great Holy Spirit indwelling a Human Body.
COLOSSIANS 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
A parable is a spiritual truth wrapped up in an earthly analogy to make it more understandable.
John presents Jesus as the Spirit of God and thus uses no parables. John just gives us the spiritual truth straight.
What is the mark of the beast, 666?
JOHN 6:66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.
Jesus is the Word. Turn away from the Word of God and you take on the mark of the beast.
The mark is in your forehead. That is where your mind is.
You are basically brainwashed into unbelief in the written Word.
You regard the King James Version of the Bible as faulty in some way.
That simply means you think Jesus is faulty in some way because He is the Word.
These four beasts are linked to the seven church ages by the first seven verses of Revelation Chapter 6.
Each verse representing a church age.
Verses 1 and 2 represent the first two church ages that were guided by the Lion-spirit which is the true Word of God as given by the apostles.
A noise of Thunder denotes a future mystery.
1965-1127 I HAVE HEARD BUT NOW I SEE
Dear God, in this solemn moment, it's going to be a time like this when there really will be a clap of thunder someday, and the Son of God shall descend from the heavens with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel, and the trump of God, the dead in Christ shall rise.
One month before he died. Brother Branham was still waiting for the thunder, shout, voice, and trump.
REVELATION 6:1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see.
“Come” means we must move out of where we are, in our comfort zone, if we are to see spiritual truths.
REVELATION 6:2 And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.
White is religious. The rider has a bow but no mention of an arrow. This is bluffing us. Religious deception. The only western religious leaders to wear a crown were the Popes between AD 860 and 1963.
The rider is the antichrist spirit that started with religious deception by setting up denominational religion under human leadership. This spirit has spread and conquered the world. Today there are 45000 different types of denominations and churches.
Verse 3 and 4 refer to the third and fourth church ages, called the Dark Ages from AD 312 to 1520. A time of almost 1200 years.
REVELATION 6:3 And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see.
1200 years was plenty of time for the young calf to grow up into an ox, the beast of burden and slaughter. About 1200 years of spiritual darkness was more than half the time of the church ages. Bible truth almost died out.
REVELATION 6:4 And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.
There was “another” horse. The red spirit of political power. But no mention of another rider. So, it is the same antichrist spirit moving from religious deception into political power.
Two horses, but one mysterious rider.
Political involvement gave the Roman Catholic church the power it needed to kill tens of millions of those people that the Catholics disagreed with.
Bibles were banned. People were killed for owning a Bible.
Verse 5 represents the Reformation age of Martin Luther in Germany.
Verse 6 represents the holiness and outreach ministry of John Wesley in England that led to the great missionary age.
REVELATION 6:5 And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand.
The man-beast had human wisdom to read and understand from Scripture that salvation, holiness, and missionary work were required of Christians.
The same mystery antichrist rider on a new black horse, started bringing Big Money into the church. Now the antichrist spirit rides on three horses.
Capitalism grew as colonial exploitation drained the money out of the colonies.
Industrialization crammed people into polluted cities without adequate sanitation. The Pope legalized slavery and charged indulgences for the forgiveness of sins. Big Money brought its demonology into the church and set the stage for the final rich Laodicean church age.
REVELATION 6:6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.
Wheat and barley make bread. The Roman Church was selling the Word of God. Candles, icons, images, and forgiveness for sins had to be bought. People were starved for hearing the revealed truth of Scripture.
Oil represents the Holy Spirit and wine speaks of the stimulation of revelation.
These two ages saw God starting to restore Biblical truth. Scholars had a deeper spiritual inspiration on how to translate the Greek and Hebrew into the King James Version of the Bible that was first produced in 1611 and then checked for over 150 years until being finally printed in 1769. God blessed human scholarship which flourished. Shakespeare, Michelangelo, and Beethoven developed their genius.
Now comes verse 7, representing the 7th church age.
REVELATION 6:7 And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see.
The 7th verse refers to the 7th church age of Laodicea. The voice of the flying eagle refers to the recorded sermons of William Branham that were taped between 1947 and 1965.
From 1966 onwards we are living in the “days of the voice of the seventh angel” to the 7th church age. His revelations SHOULD finish the mystery of God (the Godhead and the Bible) if we learn how to follow his quotes through the written Word.
REVELATION 10:7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished…
Now comes a deep revelation. The fourth horse is not a different horse. Pale is the colour of a corpse which is produced by mixing white with red and black. So, the 7th age (as given in verse 7) is the time when religious deception, political power, and Big Money demonology all unite together in the church systems to produce the final antichrist power. All this is a big distraction to keep us from growing in Bible truth and learning how to think Scripturally.
The rider is always the same person. Now the three horses have united to make one pale horse.
7 is the number of completion. So, this verse ends the seven church ages. The Bride who used the quotes of brother Branham to reveal the written Scriptures is caught up to meet the Lord in the air as the Holy Spirit leaves the earth.
REVELATION 6:8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.
Verse 8. Eight is the number representing a new system.
When Life leaves, Death enters. The Tribulation starts.
The same antichrist rider has united the church systems for the Tribulation. Now he is given the military power of ten dictators and nobody can stop him.
REVELATION 17:12 And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.
The beast is the Vatican dominated Roman Catholic Church that is ruled by the only dictator in Europe, the Pope.
The 10 horns are rulers who have power as kings. They are not crowned but have total power. Thus, they are dictators.
REVELATION 17:13 These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.
The 10 dictators give the final Pope their military power and strength.
There are 1.4 billion Catholics and 0.8 billion Protestants. The combined churches are about 2.2 billion.
One quarter of the 8 billion people on earth is 2 billion.
The Antichrist Pope’s first demonic attack will be on the church. If he kills 1.9 billion churchgoers, saved and unsaved, then he will have destroyed a quarter of mankind, and all the opposition to himself in the church world. The saved foolish virgins, fooled by church traditions, will be hunted down like dogs.
REVELATION 13:15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.
All those who oppose the church systems will be killed.
REVELATION 6:9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
This is a different group as no heavenly beast is mentioned. These are Jews. They died for their own testimony. During the 2000 years of church history, they were persecuted and killed just for being Jews.
REVELATION 6:10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?
The Jews are allowed vengeance.
EXODUS 21:24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
Because God blinded the Jews so that they could not recognize Jesus, God grants salvation to good Jews who were killed just for being Jews.
REVELATION 6:11 And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.
The Bride has just come up to Heaven. The martyred Jews of the New Testament demand immediate revenge on all the nations that had killed them during the seven church ages. They are told to wait a short while, for the 3½ years of the Tribulation. Their fellow servants, the 144000 Jews, have to come out of the Tribulation and accept Christ. Then they must be killed. All Jews must be killed for their faith.
Then Jesus will go down for Armageddon to destroy the beast and his armies.
REVELATION 6:12 And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;
This is the Tribulation on earth. What all these symbols mean we are not sure as the Bride will not be in the Tribulation.
But a massive earthquake announces the impending horror and destruction.
The San Andreas fault will produce a massive earthquake that will sink Los Angeles. The world as we know it ends in the Tribulation.
Back to John’s Gospel.
John mentions so many miracles but only records seven before the death of Jesus.
Thus, these seven miracles were not just spectacular in what they achieved back there but must also prophesy into the future by referring to the future seven church ages.
That is the only explanation for these 7 specific miracles being mentioned.
John’s Gospel presents Jesus as God.
We would expect John to mention all the miracles that God alone can perform. But John does not do so. Thereby John shows us that God’s miracles, spectacular as they are, are not God’s main focus.
God is far more concerned with guiding His church through seven church ages. This is the great mysterious plan that God has always had in mind. Then God will turn back to the Jews.
The first church age is important because the last church age must be restored to it.
The first miracle took place at a wedding where water was transformed into wine. Water is the Word. Wine is the stimulation of revelation.
The first church age had the apostles who taught the true Word of God by revealing the mysteries of Scripture. The last church age must also have a revelation of the mysteries of God.
The water, the Word, must be transformed into a revelation whereby we can understand what is written.
The last church age will end when the Bride’s bodies are transformed into glorified bodies so that we can be taken up to the Wedding Supper of the Lamb.
Thus, a transformation (water to wine) was the focus of the first miracle.
This first miracle basically prophesies of the Day of Pentecost as well as the day when the Bride or true church is caught up to meet the Lord in the air.
JOHN 2:1 And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:
Nazareth is about 4 miles (6 kilometers) from Cana. It was easy for Mary to already be at the wedding.
A woman symbolizes a church. Mary thus represents the early church as they gathered in the upper room waiting for Jesus to come down as the Holy Spirit baptism.
The third day.
The key point for Jesus is that there would be three church ages in which His Bride would be restored back to the beliefs of the first church age. These beliefs had been lost in the Dark Ages.
The 5th age of Martin Luther restored salvation by faith. This was the first day or first age of restoration.
The 6th age of John Wesley restored holiness and outreach leading to the missionary age. This was the second day or second church age of the restoration of truth after the Dark Ages.
The 7th age saw the Azusa street Pentecost revival in Los Angeles. Then the mysteries of Scripture were revealed by the American William Branham between 1947 and 1965. This was the third day or church age of restoration. This age would have the complete restoration of truth back to the foundation beliefs of the early apostles.
By running brother Branham’s quotes through the Scripture and proving his revelations from Scripture, the Bride should now be prepared for the Wedding Supper of the Lamb.
These three men or messengers can be linked to the three angels of Revelation Chapter 14. An angel is a messenger.
The diagram illustrates the three church ages that were needed for a full restoration of the first church age beliefs.
Consider the three angels of Revelation Chapter 14.
REVELATION 14:6 And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,
:7 Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.
The everlasting Gospel is repentance. This was restored by Martin Luther. Salvation through faith.
REVELATION 14:8 And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
Fornication is unclean living. This is the holiness Gospel of John Wesley. Babylon, the official church world, is fallen (spiritually), is fallen (physically into a sinful lifestyle).
REVELATION 14:9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
The beast is the world-wide Roman Catholic church system. The image of Catholicism is the uniting of the Protestant churches. In the forehead is the mind where we think and believe. The church system seeks to brainwash people into an unscriptural system of mind control.
The mind controls the hands with which people act to serve the church.
William Branham came to reveal the end time mysteries of Scripture and warn us of the dangers of the unscriptural doctrines and creeds of the modern church systems.
Brother Branham revealed the truth of Scripture, so we have no excuse for believing errors. Especially not the numerous errors of the modern-day churches.
REVELATION 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
“Without mixture”. God does not want Bible truth to be mixed with politics, pagan traditions, money-making, or worldliness.
The Tribulation is the fate of those saved Christians who believe the unscriptural ideas of the modern church world.
On Judgement Day unbelievers will be cast into the dreaded Lake of Fire.
REVELATION 14:13 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.
The mark of the beast is denominational religion. Human traditions and ideas that replaced Scripture.
We can only wait on God and wait for Him to restore the church back to the apostolic beliefs.
REVELATION 14:12 Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
Let us look at the 7 miracles that John records before Jesus was arrested and killed.
The First Miracle Represents the First Church Age.
(And thus, also the last age as the last church age will be restored back to the first church age).
Jesus is Alpha and Omega. First and Last. His first miracle was at a wedding when water was transformed into wine. Written Scripture (symbolized by life-giving water) was transformed into a revelation whereby they could understand what was written.
The transforming of the mind in the first church age.
The key day for the early apostles, when their knowledge of the written Word became an inspiring and life-changing revelation, was on the Day of Pentecost. They were so inspired they staggered around as if drunk.
When the last church age is restored back to the first church age then our bodies will be transformed into glorified bodies. So, the last miracle will be when the Bride is caught up to the Wedding Supper of the Lamb, in Heaven.
JOHN 2:2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.
MATTHEW 20:16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.
So, the first church age and the last church age must have the same beliefs as there is no difference between them since the first and the last are interchangeable.
Many are called but few are chosen.
Many Christians feel the call of God in their hearts and get saved. This qualifies them as foolish virgins. Saved but easily fooled by man-made traditions.
Then some of these saved believers insist on being Scriptural in everything that they believe, and they go on to be chosen by God to be His Bride. Eve was part of Adam’s flesh and bone from His side. The Bride is formed from the Water, Blood, and Spirit that left the Body of Jesus. So, we must be part of the Word of God. Everything that we believe must be proven from Scripture.
To be called is the first step.
Jesus had called His 12 disciples. They all went to the wedding when they were called. All 12 were called to serve and follow Jesus. But Judas dropped out later. So just being called was not enough.
REVELATION 17:14 These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.
We must be called, and chosen because we insist on being Scriptural, and then we must remain faithful to the Bible.
Many people follow Jesus when they get saved. But then they take their eyes off Him and follow unscriptural church traditions and the opinions of charismatic church leaders.
JOHN 2:2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.
JOHN 2:3 And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine.
This sounds like Jesus and the disciples asked for wine. Mary living nearby in Nazareth was already there helping. She knew that there was no wine.
A woman symbolizes the church.
A church without wine. A church with no stimulation of revelation.
Mary represents the state of the church before the Day of Pentecost.
Look at the disciples staggering around on the Day of Pentecost.
What they had been seeking was wine which symbolizes the stimulation of revelation.
ACTS 2:13 Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.
ACTS 2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:
ACTS 2:15 For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.
The Holy Spirit had really stimulated them until they even staggered like drunken men.
Back to the wedding in John’s Gospel.
JOHN 2:4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come.
Jesus sees the Big Picture.
The true church needs the Holy Spirit baptism in order to get a true understanding of Scripture. This stimulation that we receive from revelation increases our desire to get more truth from Scripture.
JOHN 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth:
The evidence of the Holy Ghost baptism was the ability of the first church age to believe all the truth of the apostolic New Testament.
But the Holy Ghost could only come after Jesus had died to pay for our sins. Thus, in effect, He says to Mary who represents the first age church, “Your real wine or stimulation of revelation will have to wait for the Day of Pentecost”.
Jesus always had the Big Picture in mind. Each step would only happen at its appointed time.
Of course, nobody knew what He was talking about.
Then Mary, symbolizing the early church, also did not know what was going to happen but knew that she had to have complete faith in Jesus.
So, she spread the message, “Whatever He tells you to do, do it”
JOHN 2:5 His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.
This was the reaction of the first church age and must also become the reaction of the last church age.
“Whatever is written in the Word of God, believe it and do it”.
JOHN 2:6 And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.
A firkin is about 41 litres or about 9 imperial gallons.
So, these were big containers. The water was used for purification which puts the emphasis on holiness. Salvation then holiness and Holy Ghost baptism.
Six is the number of man, as man was created on the sixth day.
Each pot represented a person. Water represented Scripture. Their big volume means that we humans have a big capacity for Scripture.
EPHESIANS 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
The pots had different volumes even as we humans differ in the amount of Scripture that we can remember.
JOHN 2:7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
No half-hearted interest here. Each pot was filled to capacity. Jesus expects each person to learn all the Scripture that they can. When it comes to the Bible we must all do our best.
JOHN 2:8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.
:9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
Those who held important positions had no idea what was going on. What does this tell us about modern-day church leaders?
Those who were mere servants knew what had happened.
Thus, a transformation happened.
For the first church age, God expected people to fill their minds with Scripture. Then when it was God’s chosen time, He would give a deeper revelation or understanding of these Scriptures to the person.
Those pots represent the first church age believers who absorbed as much of the Scripture as they could. This indicates a real enthusiasm to read and study the Bible.
LUKE 24:32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?
The first church age had much enthusiasm for understanding Scripture.
Then the ruler of the wedding feast said:
JOHN 2:10 And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.
A deep thought emerges from this statement.
A good revelation of the Word had been given to the early church.
Then the quality of Bible understanding got worse in the Dark Ages.
But at the end of the seventh church age, thanks to the inspired revelations of the Bible mysteries by William Branham, the same good wine that had been at the beginning was suddenly and unexpectedly available. This is a further clue that the last church age must return to the Bible beliefs of the first church age.
JOHN 2:11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.
The Lion-beast covered the first and second church ages.
So, this first miracle was specifically mentioned. Everything in the Lion-age had to be precise. The Lion represented the full truth of the first church age as it was written by the apostles.
The Second Miracle represents the Second Church Age.
This miracle also happened when Jesus was at Cana, but His Word was projected across 27 kilometers to Capernaum.
This illustrates that the apostolic teachings of the first church age had to project across to the church in the second church age, which was also under the guidance of the Lion-beast.
JOHN 4:46 So Jesus came again into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.
Speaking of the people in Berea.
ACTS 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
Noble meant that they received the Word with a ready mind and searched the Scriptures daily to check what was being preached.
This was the attitude of the second church age. As best they could, they referred back to what the apostles had taught.
Meanwhile the Devil was trying to undermine Bible truths with man-made rules and traditions.
JOHN 4:47 When he [the nobleman] heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death.
This nobleman searched for Jesus. This implies that the Christians of the second church age were searching through the Scriptures.
The nobleman father was the only way for the son to get life.
The apostles were the church fathers. Their Word, written in the New Testament, is the only way that a later generation of their spiritual sons (the following church ages) can get eternal life.
GALATIANS 4:19 My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you,
Paul, the greatest of the apostolic fathers, regarded those who he brought to Christ as his children. This would apply to the people of all the later church ages because Paul laid the foundation for the truth for all the church ages.
I CORINTHIANS 3:10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
Whatever we build must be based on what Paul taught.
Jesus asked a penetrating question. Will you only believe if you see miracles?
JOHN 4:48 Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe.
A weakness that had crept into the church was that some could only believe if they saw a miracle.
Miracles are amazing but we must not build our faith in miracles. Faith must be built on what is written in the Scriptures.
ROMANS 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Jesus now performed a long-range miracle that the man could not see.
Cana represented the first church age where the first miracle was performed.
From Cana Jesus reached across about 27 kilometers to Capernaum, which represented the second church age, also a Lion-age, where the second miracle occurred.
JOHN 4:49 The nobleman saith unto him, Sir, come down ere my child die.
The second church age was badly persecuted by the pagan Roman emperors. Emperor Diocletian launched a savage 10-year persecution to wipe out Bibles as well as Christians.
Christianity was close to dying.
JOHN 4:50 Jesus saith unto him, Go thy way; thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him, and he went his way.
The father never saw the miracle happen but he believed just because Jesus had said so.
That was the true faith of the apostolic fathers. They believed the Word of God whether miracles occurred or not.
The faith of the father saved the son.
The apostles are the church fathers. Their faith that was recorded in the New Testament must be believed by us children if we are to be saved from the Tribulation.
But Jesus enabled the second church age to survive despite the vicious persecutions of the pagan Roman empire. The church survived and lived. Ironically, in the next or third church age, it was the pagan Roman empire that died when the barbarians destroyed it.
JOHN 4:51 And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy son liveth.
The light of the second church age was going down as human leadership took charge of the church.
But persecution kept the error in check. The church was still alive, but not as Scriptural as the first age had been.
Being scattered by persecution kept the local churches small. They were effectively ruled by groups of elders, not just by one man.
ACTS 20:17 And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church.
ACTS 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
In the third church age, starting in AD 312 when Constantine came to power as Roman emperor, then Constantine began to build up the Roman Catholic church with state funds. When the church grew big, ambitious men began to take over the leadership of the church.
This candlestick represents the second church age. The flame was still bright, but human leadership was taking the church away from the original Word that guided the early church of the apostles.
JOHN 4:52 Then enquired he [the nobleman] of them the hour when he [his son] began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.
The Jewish day began at 6 o’clock in the morning. Seven hours later was 1 o’clock in the afternoon.
One o’clock puts an emphasis on the number one. The first miracle that represented the first church age. Thus, the later ages should use the first church age as their example.
The seventh hour speaks of completion. It also hints of seven church ages.
So, this second church age completed its part in the seven church ages, which was to start falling away from the truth due to human leadership. But they managed to cling onto most of the main doctrines of the apostles that were written in the New Testament.
JOHN 4:53 So the father knew that it was at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him, Thy son liveth: and himself believed, and his whole house.
What happened in far away Capernaum was in exact agreement with the spoken Word of Jesus.
This persecuted age lived because they mainly agreed with the Word.
Being scattered by persecution was harsh on them but it had a good effect as it stopped human leadership from becoming too established.
JOHN 4:54 This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judaea into Galilee.
The second church age was also part of the Lion-age where things were precise, just the way the Bible was written. So, this is recorded as the second miracle in Galilee, the region where Jesus grew up.
The Word should be growing up in our hearts. Our attitude to Jesus is reflected by our attitude to the King James Version of the Bible.
The Third Miracle Representing the Third Church Age.
In AD 325 the Roman emperor Constantine combined political power with religious power by forcing the Nicaean church Council to accept the unscriptural word, Trinity.
By changing the Word of God, the Roman Catholic Church effectively made its members blind to the truth and impotent as far as understanding Scripture is concerned.
By believing in unscriptural ideas like Trinity, they made the Bible produce various contradictions.
They claim that Jesus is in the Godhead but the Bible says that the Godhead is in Jesus.
COLOSSIANS 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
Jesus came to the pool of Bethesda in Jerusalem.
Some people say Bethesda means “House of Mercy” and others say it means “House of Shame”.
The meaning of the word Bethesda is thus controversial.
The actual position of this pool is also an issue of debate.
Consequently, the Third church age of Pergamos (meaning “thoroughly married”) was a controversial age where the pagan concepts of Trinity (introduced in AD 325) and the concept of Christmas (copied from pagans celebrating the birth of the pagan sun god on 25 December) was introduced by Pope Julius I about AD 350. The Bible never asked us to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Then, about AD 382 the bishop of Rome called himself Pontifex Maximus (high priest of the Babylonian mysteries) and became known as Pope or Pontiff. Around AD 450 Pope Leo decided that people who were not loyal to the Roman Catholic church could be severely punished or killed.
The Godhead became controversial as it was explained by unscriptural words like “God the Son” and making Jesus only the “Second Person of the Godhead”.
Was Jesus God or just the Son of God? The Godhead got very fuzzy in people’s minds.
Controversy and debate about the elevated positions of the Pope and the Catholic church hierarchy raged.
Priests were put in charge of a congregation. Bishops were put in charge of priests. Later, cardinals controlled the bishops. All of them were under the dictatorship of the Pope.
Bibles were banned in many places. People were killed for owning a Bible.
Consequently, Roman Catholic people no longer had a personal salvation experience with Jesus.
They huddled in a church, stopped thinking for themselves, and relied on submission to the Pope for salvation. Not reading the Bible made them blind. Changing the Scriptures made them withered and impotent spiritually.
JOHN 5:3 In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.
JOHN 5:4 For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.
The troubling of the water. The Word of God was replaced by man-made creeds and rules. This troubled the true believers of that age. There were much debate and persecution of the dissenters.
JOHN 5:5 And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.
This man represented the lame Jewish religion that was doomed. From the death of Jesus in AD 33 to the destruction of the Temple would be 38 years. The Jewish religious leaders were taking the Jews to their horrible final death of over 1 million Jews at the hands of the Roman soldiers in AD 70 under their general Titus.
The dates from AD 33 to AD 70 are written in black. If the year AD 33 is the first year (in red), then the year AD 70 will be the 38th year.
38 years was the time from when the Jews got the Romans to crucify Christ to when the Jews were destroyed by the Romans.
The emperor Constantine began to push the bishop of Rome as the main bishop of the western world. Then the Roman church at the Council of Nicaea in AD 325 crucified Christ the second time by changing the Word of God. They introduced the pagan idea of a Trinity God and changed the date of Easter. They made the crucifixion on a Friday. But if Jesus rose early on Sunday morning and had to be in the heart of the earth for three nights, then He had to die on a Thursday.
MATTHEW 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
Daniel spoke of the antichrist spirit as a little horn. The headquarters of the Roman Catholic church was the Lateran complex of a church and palace on the Caelian hill in Rome. The Caelian hill was one of the original seven hills of Rome. Then the Roman church established the one square kilometer of the Vatican City which is still the smallest city-state on earth. This small Vatican City runs the worldwide Roman Catholic church.
DANIEL 7:25 And he [the little horn] shall speak great words against the most High
[changing Jesus from being Almighty God to just the second Person of the Godhead]
and shall wear out the saints of the most High
[during the awful 1200 hears of the Dark Ages when Bibles were banned or only available in Latin which common people did not understand. When tens of millions were killed for opposing the Roman Catholic church. When Trinity was the only Godhead taught as they wiped out opposition to the Trinity. When human leadership established denominational creeds and traditions. When pagan traditions entered the church],
and think to change times and laws
[Christmas time on 25 December was invented by Pope Julius I around AD 350. The Bible never asked us to celebrate the birth of Jesus. This was a new law that the Pope invented.
The Pope changed the crucifixion from Thursday to Friday.
Lent, Easter eggs, Easter bunnies, Hot cross buns were introduced by the Pope.
Bunnies are the fastest breeders. They were linked to the immorality of the goddess Ishtar. Hugh Hefner used women dressed as bunnies for his immoral Playboy empire]:
and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
[The dividing of time is the seven church ages which break up the last week or 7 years of Daniel’s prophecy into two 3½ year periods. First, the actual ministry of Christ and then 2000 years later, the Tribulation].
So, the antichrist church system will suppress true believers until the end of the seven church ages.
MATTHEW 24:13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved
[saved from the Tribulation].
The Pool of Bethesda represented the spiritually withered up church of Rome.
The Pope was going to take the church to its spiritual death in the Dark Ages where the Bible was rejected and banned, except for each monastery that was allowed one Bible, chained to a desk in the library. And that Bible was in Latin. A language the common people never understood.
JOHN 5:6 When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?
This man had no experience with Jesus. He could not give a personal, “Yes” to a direct question.
He did not answer what he wanted. He had no relationship with God. He was just a church member.
JOHN 5:7 The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.
The only person who could get healed was a person who was prepared to act on his own, and who did not wait around to follow others.
Following the herd in a church system is a disaster. The trampled left-over grass is not fit to eat.
This lame man could not act for himself. He needed somebody to help him. Somebody to carry him.
The church was his crutch.
This man could not identify with God, only with the Pharisees. The religious leaders had taken the place of God in his life. Similarly, the Roman Catholics could not identify with God personally, they could only identify with their church system and human leaders who they relied on.
The Roman Catholic Church system had stopped people thinking for themselves. They just repeated man-made rules and doctrines like parrots with no understanding.
They could not answer simple questions of belief, like, “What is the name of God”.
They believed in three separate Persons in the Godhead.
Nobody can find one name for three people.
So, having no understanding themselves, the people desperately referred the question to somebody else. “Speak to my pastor”. But neither priest nor pastor nor Pope could find one name for a Triune God.
Their devotion was to their church and church leader, not to Jesus and the Bible.
Rituals replaced reality.
JOHN 5:8 Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.
Jesus offered him an experience where he could think for himself and stand on his own two feet, instead of being carried around by other people’s ideas.
Notice the reversal of the man’s situation after he met Jesus.
He had depended on the bed to carry him. Now he carried the bed.
He had depended on the church to think for him and carry him into the presence of God. Now he could carry his thoughts through Scripture by himself.
In other words, he could think for himself. He could get life and revelation from Jesus
JOHN 5:9 And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath.
So, a personal salvation experience with Jesus released the man from his bondage to the church and his dependence on others.
But when Jesus enables you to think for yourself by following an idea through Scripture, that puts you in opposition to the church leaders who do not want you to think for yourself from Scripture. They want you to be in submission to their man-made traditions and commandments. They will immediately oppose the Biblical truths that Jesus has just opened your mind to.
JOHN 5:10 The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.
The religious leaders clung to their Sabbath ritual.
Traditional religious rituals are the momentum of the church.
Following a tradition without ever checking to see if it is Scriptural.
“Do it my way, or else”, say the religious leaders.
“That is not the way our church does it. That is not what we believe”.
People obey the church routine rather than the Bible.
JOHN 5:11 He answered them, He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk.
The man argued that he was just obeying Jesus, just obeying the Word of God.
For example, church leaders do not do foot washing. They say it is just a symbol of humility or washing dust off your feet as you come into a house in order not to carry dirt into the house. But supper was over, and thus they had already walked through the house.
And Jesus had said that Peter would not understand then, what Jesus was doing.
But Peter could understand humility and washing his feet clean.
JOHN 13:6 Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet?
JOHN 13:7 Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.
So, church leaders do not understand foot washing and just avoid it.
They then do the breaking of bread (often called Communion) in the morning, despite calling it the Lord’s Supper because Jesus did it at night time.
Church leaders get away from what happened in Scripture but then oppose anyone as an enemy if they want to be strictly Scriptural and just follow the example of Jesus with no deviations.
JOHN 5:12 Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?
The religious leaders had no clue who Jesus was. They saw Him as a Man, an inferior second Person of the Godhead.
Their fuzzy theory of Trinity sometimes saw Jesus as God if they focused on Him alone. But then sometimes they only saw Him as the second Person if they focused on all three People in the Trinity.
JOHN 5:13 And he that was healed wist not who it was: for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place.
Trinity stopped people from knowing who Jesus is. Sometimes He is God, sometimes He is only the second Person in the Godhead, inferior to God the Father.
Yet Jesus is supposed to be co-equal with “God the Father”. But the Bible never calls Him “God the Son”.
The Old Testament never says, “God the Father”. Trinity believers cannot explain this.
JOHN 14:28 ... for my Father is greater than I.
But the Trinity says Jesus is co-equal to the Father.
No wonder people are confused about Who Jesus is.
Is Jesus God or is He only the second Person of the Godhead?
The third church age of Pergamos spoke of Balaam, the false prophet who got the Jews involved with the wrong women, the Moabites. These women were close to the Jews as they were the descendants of Lot who was Abraham’s nephew. But Moab was Lot’s illegitimate son.
Rome spawned the unscriptural idea of denominational religion which produced the wrong churches that people got involved with. The denominational churches are close to the truth and read the Bible. But they have illegitimate beliefs that are not written in the Bible. They also change certain parts of Scripture. They believe the Bible contradicts itself and has bad translations. They claim that Genesis begins with some myths and they believe in the Big Bang and the Evil-solution of Evolution. They allow scientists to take away their faith in the Bible. All these criticisms of the Bible are simply criticisms of Jesus because He is the Word. By criticizing the Word, their beliefs become illegitimate.
The third church age developed the doctrine of Nicolaitanism, which means conquering the Laity or congregation.
This was the elevation of a holy man to be in charge of the church. Human leadership that God hated. Get saved by Jesus and then join a church where you have to be subject to the human leader, not the Word of God.
The church leader, usually a priest or pastor, says, “I tell you what to do and believe, and your only task is to obey me”.
The healed man feels obliged by his indoctrination to rush back to his religious leaders, but they are the very people who could not help him.
JOHN 5:14 Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.
The man has rushed back to the Temple to speak to the religious leaders, so He still did not understand personal salvation (that Martin Luther would later restore) and the man still believed that he needed to be carried by the priests. He still could not think for himself. But the priests would refuse to heal on a Sabbath because they could not heal on any day. They regarded the healed man as an enemy because he had had an experience with Jesus.
The healed man had no personal reality with God, so he desperately needed someone to help him. Thus he returned to the priests, the very people who had destroyed his relationship with God by offering him man-made religious rituals that were spiritually dead. Yet, as with all fooled people, he was happy with his human dependence. Standing on his own feet and thinking for himself was a huge responsibility. Something that would take deep work, not the lazy drifting that he was used to in the shallow church traditions.
Jesus revealed Himself to the man and warned him against sinning. This was the third church age where the Roman Catholic church indulged in religious deception due to Greek philosophy, Roman political power, and pagan traditions and beliefs.
One-God-in-three-Persons is Greek philosophy, it is not Scriptural.
Plenty of sin was entering the church.
But as the barbarians began to break up the Roman empire, the Pope saw his chances of rising to power as the leader of the western barbarian tribes.
JOHN 5:15 The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, which had made him whole.
The religious leaders discovered that Jesus could save and heal people without any reference to the official church system.
JOHN 5:16 And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day.
Jesus is the Word. So, the official Roman Catholic Church began to persecute people who owned and believed the Scriptures. The Roman Catholic priests opposed and sought to destroy the Scriptures. A very effective plan was when the Bible was translated into Latin which the people did not understand.
Priests preached in Latin and the common people became divorced from any Scriptural understanding.
Thus, spiritually they were very lame. They could not follow truth through the different verses of the Bible because they did not have a Bible.
The people just remained subject to the Roman Catholic Church instead of breaking away from it.
The influence of the Word of God on their lives was thus effectively killed as the age descended into spiritual darkness.