1. Hello, listening friends.
2. Thank you for tuning in to this brand new series of messages;
3. and we’re going to talk about the coming of Jesus Christ.
4. Jesus was not just a Prophet who was born and, then, later called to be the Messiah.
5. No, Jesus came from Heaven;
6. and that is why His birth was prophesied hundreds of years before He was born.
7. That is why the coming of Christ is at the center of Christianity.
8. Advent is the heart of the Scripture.
9. Advent is God’s method of dealing with the human race.
10. History moved toward the advent of Christ until it was accomplished;
11. and, in Him, history itself found its fulfillment and explanation.
12. The message of the Prophets,
13. the songs of the psalmists,
14. they all came into their final crescendo announcing the birth of Jesus Christ.
15. From that advent of Christ, all subsequent movements have proceeded.
16. The Old Testament theme was "Christ is coming into the world."
17. It is vitally important, therefore, to understand the purpose of Advent.
18. Why did Christ come from Heaven?
20. He came to destroy the works of the devil.
22. to eliminate the power of sin.
24. to reveal the Father;
25. and, fourthly,
26. He came to lay the foundation for the Second Advent.
27. You can state them backward,
28. you can change them around,
29. but these truths are the four foundations of the purpose of Advent:
30. destroying the work of the devil,
31. taking away sin,
32. revealing the face of the Father,
33. and moving the Kingship of God toward consummation.
34. Let’s today look at the first purpose of Advent,
35. namely, to destroy the works of the devil.
36. The enemy, here, is described as the "devil."
37. In the Gospel according to John, Chapter 8,
38. Jesus said that the devil is a murderer from the beginning; he is a liar.
39. Later on, we are told that the devil put it into the heart of Judas to betray Christ.
40. What kind of a person is this devil?
41. He is a murderer.
42. He is a liar.
43. He is a betrayer,
44. and the fountainhead of sin and lawlessness.
45. What about his work?
46. His work is that of murder and destruction of life.
47. His work is that of being a liar and the extinguisher of light.
48. His work is being a betrayer,
49. which is a violation of love.
50. His work is lawlessness,
51. which is breaking and destroying the Law.
52. These are the works of the devil.
53. As a murderer, he is not satisfied with only destroying physical life,
54. but his great desire is to destroy life eternally.
55. His main work is to keep men and women alienated from God.
56. His biggest preoccupation is to keep men and women spiritually blind so they cannot know God.
57. He will tell them that it is fine to be religious, but you cannot know God personally.
58. The devil knows that he cannot keep religion out of the world altogether;
59. so, he deceives people into being religious, but not lovers of God.
60. On a physical realm,
61. all the diseases, the pain and the hurt of the world,
62. they are ultimately the result of sin and are among the works of the devil.
63. The Greek word for "murderer" literally means a "slayer of men;"
64. so the devil’s ultimate desire is to slay us spiritually;
65. also, to slay us mentally
66. by blinding men and women toward God.
67. He slays us physically
68. by bringing all manner of disease and death;
69. but he is more than all of that.
70. He is a liar.
71. When a person lies, that person operates in secret.
72. He operates in darkness.
73. Once a lie is exposed to the light,
74. it is no longer a secret;
75. so, what Satan does is extinguish the light so that people stumble along the way.
76. My listening friend, please listen carefully.
77. All ignorance,
78. all despair,
79. all wandering over the trackless desert of life,
80. are all due to the extinguishing of light.
81. The liar is the one who brings darkness into a situation.
82. Thirdly, his work is a betrayer.
83. We see it in the way he entered into the heart of Judas and planted the seed of betrayal.
84. For three years, Judas looked like a Disciple.
85. He acted like a Disciple;
86. but, in reality, he had a private agenda.
87. He wanted Jesus to get involved with the Zealots.
88. They were the revolutionary party that wanted to overthrow the Roman authority;
89. and, when Jesus refused to get involved in politics,
90. Judas became bitter.
91. Judas became angry,
92. and Satan took advantage of that and planted the seed of betrayal;
93. but, my listening friend,
94. Satan does the same thing today.
95. He plants the seed of betrayal-
96. betrayal between husbands and wives,
97. betrayal between two brothers in Christ,
98. betrayal between family members.
99. In the case of a married couple, for example,
100. when an argument develops that isn’t resolved, what happens?
101. Satan comes to one of the spouses and says,
102. "Your spouse is not fair to you.
103. You deserve better than this."
104. At that point, Satan provides you with an opportunity to betray your marriage vows.
105. The problem is that we are often too blind to see Satan’s schemes.
106. What is the work of the devil?
107. All jealousy,
108. all cruelty,
109. all envy,
110. all strife.
111. They are all the work of the devil;
112. but Jesus came to destroy all of this.
113. That is why Jesus gave us the formula of how to overcome the devil.
114. That is why Jesus commanded us to overcome Satan’s works.
115. When jealousy begins to take hold of you,
116. when resentment begins to raise its ugly head,
117. stop right then and pray.
118. It is a liberating experience to pray for your enemies,
119. and to bless your persecutors.
120. Do you know what it means to pray for your enemy and bless your persecutors?
121. It means that you are entrusting them to God’s justice;
122. and do you know what that is like?
123. Although God’s justice might not be evident immediately,
124. but God’s justice is far more severe than human justice;
125. and, when you trust God to bring justice,
126. you will have peace in your life.
127. Oh, yes, Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil.
128. Finally, Satan is the man of lawlessness.
129. Now, this does not mean being without law;
130. it means being against the law.
131. It means being a lawbreaker;
132. so that all the wrong that is done in the world,
133. whether it is done toward God or toward people,
134. are all the works of the devil;
135. so, the Son of God was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil.
136. Not only restrain sin,
137. but root it out and break it down.
138. Not just limit sin,
139. not just alleviating sin,
140. not just neutralizing sin,
141. but to destroy it.
142. Advent was not merely the birth of a little child who will be a model man,
143. but there is more to it than that.
144. Advent is God Himself destroying the works of the devil.
145. You say, "What does that mean—to destroy?"
146. It means to "dissolve" or to "loosen."
消灭就是“解体” 或者“瓦解” 的意思 ，
147. It means that which had been a consistent whole was broken up and scattered and wrecked.
148. Jesus’ advent was to loosen the consistency of the grip of the works of the devil.
149. The cohesive forces that made the devil’s work strong -
150. Jesus broke them up.
151. Jesus came to destroy hatred through the gift of love.
152. Jesus came to destroy lawlessness by the gift of obedience to the Lord.
153. Jesus came to loosen, to break up and to destroy the negatives which mar and spoil;
154. and He did this by bringing the positive that makes and uplifts.
155. Jesus came to destroy death by the gift of eternal life,
156. for Jesus said in the Gospel of John,
157. “…for this is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God.”
158. This gift of eternal life destroys death.
159. That is why Paul could say,
160. “Oh, death, where is your sting?”
161. So, Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil by giving us the gift of eternal life.
162. As for darkness, it no longer has a hold over us.
163. The Light of the Word of God is here to guide us.
164. The Light of the Holy Spirit leads us into all truth.
165. As for hatred, Jesus destroyed hatred by His gift of love.
166. I’m sure some of you are probably asking,
167. “If this is the case, why do we still have crime and violence and hatred?
168. Why do we have hatred and prejudice and pride and wickedness?”
169. Well, you have not seen what it was like 2,000 years before Christ.
170. It was far worse.
171. True, we see the works of the devil all around us still;
172. but we also see victories over his work all over this world.
173. We believers have victory over Satan and sin here on the earth,
174. which was impossible before Christ;
175. but we will have complete victory after his Second Coming.
176. The victory we are experiencing now is only the beginning.
177. The ultimate victory is coming.
178. It is dawn right now,
179. but bright sunshine is coming.
180. It is not very visible now,
181. but the brightness of the Son is on its way;
182. and, there, we shall see Jesus as He is:
183. but the question is, are you ready?
184. Are you sure, if Jesus Christ comes back today, that you will be with Him?
185. Are you sure that, if you were to die right now, you will be in His presence?
186. You can have that assurance today.
187. Ask God to forgive you of your sins
188. and invite His Son, Jesus Christ, to be the Lord of your life,
189. and He promised to accept your invitation;
190. and we hope that you’ll write to us and tell us that you’ve invited Christ into your life.
191. Until next time, I wish you God’s richest blessing.