“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, ‘Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is He of whom I said, ‘After me comes a Man who is preferred before me, for He was before me.’ I did not know Him; but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water.’”
You are so tired, aren’t you? I am very tired too. I know that we are weary because we work hard serving God’s righteousness everyday. All of us truly have hardships, and we are serving the Lord in spite of these hardships.
Anyways, we have converted some precious souls that are more valuable than the universe during the evangelical meeting this week. I am sure that the souls received the salvation during this time because of all the spiritual works that took place at this evangelical meeting. I am very thankful that each of you have served in many ways and at every opportunity, leading souls, sharing newspapers, praying, attending meetings, and so on. We cannot thank God enough, for we have won some souls that are more precious than the entire universe! The evangelical meeting is really worth having! We also are grateful to God whenever we hear the good news from our readers who have read our spiritual growth series. We really give thanks.
It would be much easier for us to preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit if there were not the false teachers in this world. Today, preaching the gospel of the water and the Spirit is very difficult because there are lots of Christians who oppose the Truth of salvation. Furthermore, preaching the gospel of the water and the Spirit these days is getting more difficult than ever because of those who propagate the pseudo-gospels, which are similar to the true gospel. They make people fall into confusion with such fake gospels. They are the ones who cause people to sin. Woe to such false preachers, because the Lord said, “It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones” (Luke 17:2).
Those who have not yet been born again from their sins cannot discern the true gospel from the false one. So, they are prone to deception by the false preachers. They are merely the prey of such predators, the spiritual wolves. I was told that a certain pastor in our city has plans to gather the offerings from his congregation up to 10 million US dollars to build a huge chapel. That preacher has collected 4 million until now. The congregation of that church number about 500; some say that he did not hesitate to mortgage the houses of the members of the congregations to raise the 10 million US dollars.
Frankly speaking, those who preach false gospel similar to the gospel of the water and the Spirit are using their ministry with the plan to extort money from their congregations. That is why they say every person in their church looks like money. It is the same with the taxi drivers saying all the people standing at the roadside look like money. They are very different from the servants of God who are preaching the gospel of the water and the Spirit. To those who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, each soul looks more precious than the entire universe. But to the people who are not yet born again, they are seen as precious because of money. Therefore, we have to thank the Lord who made us the soldiers who can preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
John said looking at Jesus, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29) The happiest thing for me in my religious life was that I realized that our Lord took our sins once for all by receiving the baptism from John the Baptist and shed His blood on the Cross. My joy was beyond all description when I realized the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit. There was nothing in my spiritual life that gave me greater pleasure than the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Even now, the pleasure I felt at that time when the gospel of the water and the Spirit came to me is still taking place in my mind.
Why am I so happy? My mind is happy because Jesus blotted out all my sins absolutely once for all by receiving the baptism. Our Lord by His grace has spared the judgment of all my sins through His baptism. There is nothing better for every one than believing in this gospel of the water and the Spirit. How can there be more joyous gospel than this?
We did not have true joy before we knew the preciousness of the gospel of the water and the Spirit. There does not exist the more joyful salvation than the salvation we have attained by believing in the gospel power of the water and the Spirit. When we listened to the gospel of the water and the Spirit at first, we just came to recognize that this is plain and simple truth. But, we feel happier as times passes while we listen to the gospel Truth through every meeting in God’s Church. There is really no other joyful gospel for each of us than this gospel of the water and the Spirit. There is no other joyful gospel than the news that Lord took all the sins of this world when He received the baptism from John the Baptist, and so He saved us from the sins of the world.
We are truly joyful because of this gospel of the water and the Spirit. Where can there be more joyful news to us who were sinners? The laughter springs up from the depth of the hearts of those who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. If there are not sins in our mind, the joy springs up and the peace comes. It is true. If we do not have sins in our mind, the laughter springs up naturally in our mind because there is joy in our heart. Is it the same to you, or not? Yes, I am sure it is the same to all of you.
We cannot express how thankful we are because we are so happy because we do not have sins. There was a famous movie titled “Sound of Music.” I remember that the story and the sweet songs of this movie gave me great joy and make an impression on my mind for a while after I saw the movie. But, the joys from this world do not last long.
The praise of faith that we give to God is greater than the pleasure of this world. The pleasure of salvation that our Lord has given us by blotting out our sins is so great that it cannot be compared with the joy of this world. Even if you spend your vacation at the beach of Waikiki pitching a tent under a coconut tree watching beautiful girls and scenery, in the hearts of the born-again, there is still a greater joy, a joy greater than anything we can get from this world. The blessings of being born again with the gospel of the water and the Spirit cannot be changed with any blessing in this world.
When the Lord was about to receive the baptism from John the Baptist, He said to John, “For thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). And, the next day, John testified, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29) If these verses were not recorded in the Bible, all the people living on earth would die hopelessly in sin. We receive the salvation if we believe the promise of salvation that our Lord blotted out our sins by taking it with His baptism and the shedding of the blood. We clearly had sins before we believed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, but now the sin has been blotted out.
Whether the people believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit or not, the Lord has already blotted out all the sins of this world. Because our Lord has taken the sins of the world and He has fulfilled all the righteousness of God once for all, we received the remission of sins by the power of the gospel of the water and the Spirit that He gave us. We have true hope because the gospel of the water and the Spirit is in this world. Though there are many people in this world who have not yet received the remission of sins, they can be cleansed of their sins if they listen to this gospel of the water and the Spirit and accept it with their heart. This is why there is still hope.
We are happy living in the gospel of God and in the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Those who have received the remission of sins live praising God because of the joy that they are sinless. That gospel is that our Lord has blotted out all the sins of mankind by receiving the baptism from John in the Jordan River (Matthew 3:15). Why did Jesus blot out our sins? It is because He loved us so much. The Lord came to this earth and saved us completely from the sins of the world by receiving the baptism from John at the Jordan River, because our Lord so loved all of us, the mankind in this earth. Jesus Christ cleansed the sins of this world once and for all by taking them through the baptism received from John the Baptist to follow the will of God the Father.
There are many people in this world who do not know the fact that Jesus is God. Even among Christians, there are many do not truly know him. Especially, some Christian sects even do not mention the fact that Jesus is God. They themselves deny the divine nature of Jesus. Even some of the saints of my church do not have a clear understanding of this truth. When they heard from me, “Jesus is God,” they said that they understand that Jesus is the Son of God but they do not understand that Jesus is God. It is all right. It is because they have not learned it yet. It is all right if they learn, know and believe that Jesus is God and the Son of God now and in the future. God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ are omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, eternal, ubiquitous, and almighty God. He is God who made this spacious universe.
Why did Jesus Christ who is God come to us? It was for Jesus Christ to have personal association and love with us. Jesus could not share true fellowship with the sinners. To have fellowship with God, we have to become the believers of the gospel of the water and the Spirit. So, God sent His beloved Son to this earth wearing the features of a man, for God so loved the world. Jesus came to us through the body of a human being. As it is written in John 1:14, “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us,” He came to this earth with flesh, but He was God fundamentally. Jesus Christ is the very God who made this boundless universe.
That God the Creator had to come as our Savior. God the Savior came to this earth having the same flesh as ours, experienced the same pains and sorrows of ours, received the baptism from John the Baptist, and saved the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit by rising again after dying on the Cross. The Lord became our Savior, our true God. That is why we are calling Jesus our Lord the Savior.
Jesus is God fundamentally (1 John 5:20). So, we are to live wearing and feeling the love of God in Jesus by believing in Jesus as the Lord and Savior. Jesus took the sins of this world once for all by receiving the baptism from John, and He went to the Cross and received the judgment of the sins that the sinners supposed to receive. Now, we believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit became sinless because of the Lord. We can become the people of God when we are saved from all the sins by believing in Jesus Christ with our hearts. Our salvation is all because of the love of God.
Therefore, what must be the true content of the sermons of the Christian preachers? The people who have received the remission of sins say that Jesus took the sins of the world by receiving the baptism, and that He has blotted out all sin through His death and resurrection. All we have to preach is that the Lord blotted out our sins once and for all with the gospel of the water and the Spirit and became eternal Savior to us.
Is this Truth of salvation engraved in our mind? The gospel of the water and the Spirit does not end even if we preach it forever, and we have to believe in this because it is the Truth that blotted out all our sins. The gospel Word of the water and the Spirit is the Truth of salvation that is good whenever we listen to it. This gospel of the water and the Spirit is really the blessed gospel, the love of God, and also the Truth of salvation. So, one receives great blessings in the mind whenever he listens to this gospel Word.
When we listen to the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we have to throw away our own thoughts and our fixed ideas. It is written in Colossians, “Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit” (Colossians 2:8). We must not be cheated by the faith of the philosophy and empty deceit. We have to throw away our human thought and believe in the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit according to this admonishment.
You have heard through the written Word that Jesus took the sins of the world through the baptism received from John the Baptist. Jesus came to this earth as the Lamb of God. When the High Priest of the Old Testament laid both his hands on the head of the sacrificial lamb, all the sins were passed onto the Lamb. Then, the sacrificial lamb was killed for the sake of the sins of his people. Likewise, Jesus also offered a spiritual burnt offering by giving His body. Jesus remitted all our sins in “the same way as the laying on of hands in the Old Testament,” receiving the baptism from John the Baptist (Matthew 3:13-17).
People consider philosophy as a high form of thought that is held in high regard. They consider it great for the human beings to have the ability to think. This is why there is a saying, “Man is a thinking reed.” However, if you walk the side streets in Korea, you can find not a few philosophical centers. Philosophical centers sound like a place where the common people cannot approach boldly. But, the philosophical centers in our country are the place in fact where the fortunetellers earn their living. Such places are the irrational places in fact, but this phenomenon is supporting evidence that people give generous points to the word ‘philosophy’ without reason.
However, philosophy is nothing special. Philosophy is simply the system of thought of man. But, God said, “The wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). Therefore everything which comes from the thoughts of man are false, and the half gospel of the Christianity which is from and made out of man’s thoughts will never be the same as the true gospel of the water and the Spirit, no matter how proudly it argues its history and tradition. No matter how hard we believe in half gospels, our sins would not be blotted out. What is so great about the half gospel? It is nothing.
Only the Truth and the true gospel of the water and the Spirit states that Jesus took the sins of the world through the baptism He received from John. John 1:29 is the clear evidence of this fact. Therefore, it is silly to substitute the gospel of the water and the Spirit with the half gospel and to console the heart with the thoughts of man while trying to fit the salvation according to one’s own thoughts. See the reality of today’s ministry workers. What is the use of their doing church ministry after studying the theology for 10 years, and then going for more study abroad? If they try to construct parts of a sermon, aren’t they busy collecting piece by piece, little by little from the books of philosophy, literature, theology, annotation, the Bible, and all the dictionaries spread all over the room over several days? How tiresome is that work? Those kinds of sermons give suffering to people everyday, instead of giving the remission of sins.
We have to throw away the philosophical faith, which comes from the thoughts of man. Here is the gospel of the water and the Spirit that declares that Jesus has blotted out all of our sins. “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29) We receive the remission of sins truly in our mind by believing in Jesus according to the evidence of Bible passages such as Matthew 3:15 and John 1:29.
It is true when it is written that Jesus took the sins of this world to the Cross once and for all by receiving the baptism from John. There is nothing for us to say but to believe it, if the Word of God states that Jesus bore all our sins once for all when He received the baptism from John the Baptist. It is really silly that we do not believe in the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit because of our own fleshly or philosophical thoughts. The will and actions of God say that He saved us with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. If we cannot believe the true gospel because of our own fleshly thoughts, then we are stupid and foolish.
My fellow believers, if war broke out in our country and you became the captives of the war, what then are you going to say to your enemies? As a prisoner, how can you dare to say to the enemy as follows? “I am a battalion commander in our force! Do you fail to recognize me? What is this, why aren’t you shining my shoes? You kids must have no shame.” What happens if he speaks roughly like that? He will be killed.
“Whether you are a battalion commander or a division commander of your army, if you cannot grasp the situation even now, wake up man! You are now captured by the enemies. Do you get it? Recover your senses, you bastard! It is all right for me to shoot you a rifle or a gun. You are so noisy, and you seem to be out of your mind not knowing if we are friends or foes, if it is feces or urine.” If the situation goes like this, the Geneva Conventions, which tries to uphold the human rights of captives in times of war, is of no use. It is the captive who does not have any power and the enemies will put him in excremental water up to his neck without giving him something to eat.
My fellow believers, if the Bible said that Jesus took the sins of the world by receiving the baptism from John, then, it is true. Being a captive of sin, what could a sinner do or say against the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit and God? We simply have to believe if it is written in the Bible that Jesus has taken the sins of the world by receiving the baptism instead of shouting useless words. There is nothing for us human beings to be proud before Jesus no matter how smart we are or how much we have learned. Is there anything for you to be proud of?
We cannot boast of ourselves before Jesus even we have hundreds of Doctor of Divinity decrees. But then, there are so many ridiculous people in the Christian community. The personal records or resumes of some pastors reveal that they have attended several theological schools. They have gone here and there, but they have graduated from only one school. It is recorded that they have accomplished some subjects here and other subjects there, but they do still not know this Truth that Jesus took the sins of the world. They have sins everyday because they do not know this. Even though Jesus has taken the sins of the world, they still have sins because they do not know about the true gospel. Therefore they inevitably will remain as the captives of sin. It is silly for them to be fascinated in philosophy of the world because of their ignorance about the Truth of the water and the Spirit.
Philosophy and theology have come out of the thoughts of man, and therefore, they are no more than rubbish. The Apostle Paul also regarded philosophy as rubbish (Philippians 3:8). Those who dig into the field of philosophy know this fact well. Those who studied casually in this world might think the worldly studies are great, however those who studied the worldly studies properly know full well that there are limitations in the knowledge of mankind. So, as someone once said, “the more learned, the more confused.”
Therefore, if it is said in the Bible that Jesus took the sins of the world, it is simply true. There is nothing more to say against it. Who testified that Jesus took the sins of the world? John the Baptist passed the sins onto Jesus and he testified for Him like this: “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! That Person is the Messiah to come, and He is the Savior who has taken all the sins of mankind. Jesus is your Savior. Believe in Him. Jesus has taken all our sins.”
I mean to say that John the Baptist has testified like this. Of course, there were many people who asked for forgiveness of their sins everyday because of the sins in their hearts. Didn’t John the Baptist say the very shocking words to them? “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” It was very shocking that he called Jesus ‘the Lamb of God.’ Up until the moment John testified in this way, who among them believed in Jesus as God? Who among them believed in Jesus as the Messiah? His testimony might be very shocking to the people of his days, because no one knew who Jesus was yet. “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” It is very shocking if we take the situation at that time into consideration.
“Behold!” They were asking for the attention. “The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” Namely, these words mean that Jesus is the Messiah. It means that Jesus is the Savior so to speak, or God. When John the Baptist testified, “That Person is precisely the Messiah who has been prophesized by Isaiah in the Old Testament,” then the people were shocked and doubtful, likely saying, “Then, is He the One? But then, is He that shabby? He looks like a countryside man. Is He the very Savior who was prophesied to look like a root out of dry ground?”
When we look into below passage of Isaiah, it is evident that the appearance of Jesus was nothing to admire.
“Who has believed our report?
And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant,
And as a root out of dry ground.
He has no form or comeliness;
And when we see Him,
There is no beauty that we should desire Him” (Isaiah 53:1-2).
It is usual for us to think Jesus as very handsome Jesus, but the Scripture said that there was no beauty that we should desire Him. But, the Words from His mouth were very precious. They were very rare and precious. The glory and preciousness of Jesus were without comparison.
My fellow believers, how wonderful were these words that John the Baptist has testified? “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” It declares, “Jesus has blotted out all the sins of mankind.” We too spread the same Word that John the Baptist did, as it is great news. However, there are many people who do not believe in this marvelous testimony. Some people just argue the doctrines of their denominations without learning or knowing them properly. They do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit even though it is the Word written in the Bible.
It is frustrating that most Christians today do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit because of their ignorance of it. They cannot know and believe in the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit because they believe in their religious body, their power, their own thoughts, and even their own emotions. The Christian leaders of this world are prone to boast of themselves, but they do not have anything to boast in reality. They might be proud of their powers to calm evil spirits by touching the lower end of the possessed person’s. But, they become dumb when they are asked to interpret God’s Word, such as “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”
Dear fellow believers, no matter how smart and talented you are, you can only be saved and receive the remission of sins by believing the Word that says, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” Why is it so hard to believe that John the Baptist passed the sins of the world onto Jesus and then testified that He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world? Just as the sacrifices of the Old Testament involved the passage of sins by laying hands on a sacrifice, Jesus has received and then blotted out all the sins of the people through His baptism. Then, what is more to say before the testimony of John? You would still be living as sinners if you did not believe in this Word.
The reason that our mind is peaceful now is because our Lord took the sins of this world with His baptism and blotted out our sins once for all on the Cross. That is why our mind is sinless and peaceful. However, there are countless Christians who have sins because they do not believe in the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit. There is no assurance of being saved from sin in them; their mind is always insecure, and they are very tired from showing off by endlessly doing virtuous deeds.
Some people go to hell even though they believe in Jesus wholeheartedly, and some people go to Heaven because they believe in Jesus according to the Truth. In fact, it seems that there are many Christians who should go to Heaven, but this is not the case. They know that they have sin and will be destroyed for their sins, and therefore, they try to escape from that destruction by doing good deeds in their own ways. They assume that they will go to Heaven by living virtuously, but they are going to hell.
God the Father appointed the Son of God as the Savior of this world, and decided that no one can be saved from his or her sins without having the faith in the baptism that the Son received and the blood of the Cross. We go to Heaven because of Jesus and the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Even if we live virtuously in this world, if we do not believe in Jesus who came by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we cannot be saved from destruction, and we would go to hell. Originally, it was decided for everyone to go to hell because of sins in his or her heart, but there are the people who go to Heaven receiving the salvation because Jesus has saved them.
If a Christian does not know the way to be saved, he would go to hell, no matter how fervently he believes in Jesus. If people received salvation by living virtuously, many people in the world who are living kindly and ethically would go to Heaven. However, in spite of these false expectations, the law of God’s salvation is the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We receive the salvation by believing in Jesus, who came by the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Philosophical people, very smart people, and intelligent people in this world will go to hell because of their sins because they do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
I really thank our Lord that He blotted out our sins with His baptism and blood. I thank Him very much. If the Lord asks us of what we are most thankful for, we cannot help but to say that we are thankful that our Lord has blotted out our sins. I really want to proclaim this forever. Do you also want to say that you are thankful and grateful that the Lord has blotted out all your sins? I am sure you do. Do not have thoughts other than this; let us think most joyously that the Lord has blotted out all our sins in this world by faith. Such a person is clearly very wise.
What is more precious than the gospel of the water and the Spirit? We can do the works of God acceptably with the faith of believing in this gospel. We can serve and preach this true gospel, do good and live for others when we have the faith of believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit in our mind. We have to live by the correct faith which enables us to receive the remission of sins. We can do good works with the faith in a mind that is grateful to our Lord for His blotting out our sins. We have to do this and that if the Lord wants. We have to thank God with faith. We always have to keep the faith in our mind and be thankful that the Lord Jesus Christ has taken and blotted out our sins. Do you believe now?
Those who do not have the gospel of the water and the Spirit in their mind at this point have to believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit before the day the Lord returns.
We who have this beautiful gospel in our heart are giving thanks to the Lord forever because He has taken the sins of the world by receiving the baptism from John the Baptist in the Jordan River. Because of His righteous act, we are sinless even though we are too weak and insufficient to live without committing sins. Halleluiah!