Sermon Highlight: The Continual Ministry of Christ

And out of one of them came a little horn which grew exceedingly great toward the south, toward the east, and toward the Glorious Land. And it grew up to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and some of the stars to the ground, and trampled them. He even exalted himself as high as the Prince of the host; and by him the daily sacrifices were taken away, and the place of His sanctuary was cast down. Because of transgression, an army was given over to the horn to oppose the daily sacrifices; and he cast truth down to the ground. He did all this and prospered. Dan. 8:9-12.

The word sacrifices in the above passage is actually added/supplied by the translated. The original just reads “the daily were taken away.” The word for daily means continual. There was always a lamb on the alter burning. This symbolized that we can ask for forgiveness no matter who, where, and when we are. The forgiveness of God is continual.

The above passage also warns of a power that wars against God’s people, God’s truth, God’s “daily,” and God’s sanctuary. What are the different facets of His sanctuary?

The Table of Showbread (or Table of His Presence or Face). Unleavened bread, 50 pounds each, sat in two stacks of 6 on this table. There was always bread on the table. Continual. This symbolized God’s Word. “Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). Again, it does matter who, where, and when you are, you can open God’s word and He will meet you there. His ministry through His word is continual.

 

Unfortunately, there is an entity in the world that says, “Don’t confess your sins to God, confess them to a man.” Not only that, don’t believe you can be freely forgiven. Instead, you will be told something you must do to atone for your sin. “The Bible cannot be trusted,” this warring power say. “Instead, you must look to our authority.”

 

The Table of Incense. Smoke from the incense would fill the room and go over the veil to the very presence of God in the Most Holy Place. These represented the prayers of the saints (Rev. 5:8). Jesus said we are to ask in His name (John 16:24). We cannot ask in our name because even our righteousness is filthy rags (Is. 64:6). That would be like smoke with no incense: irritating. Again, just as with the continually burning sacrifice, there was always incense on the alter burning. It was continual. You can pray and ask for the help you need anytime. You can talk to God as a Friend, telling Him what is on your heart.

 

This is an essential part of the continual ministry of Christ. It is only through prayer that we can gain the victory over sin. Yet, there is an entity out there that says, “Don’t pray in your heart to God. Instead, pray the prayers someone else has written over and over, to the point where you need a mechanism to keep track of where you are in the number of prayers.” Do not forget that Jesus said not to use vain repetitions when praying (Matt. 6:7).

 

The Lampstand. We are to walk in the light and be lights. As in, we are to keep God’s word, His commandments (1 John 2:3-11). We cannot do this in our own strength. Obedience is not legalism. Legalism is legalism. God-powered obedience is asking God to help you keep His commandments because you love Him. The lampstand was powered by oil, which symbolized the Holy Spirit. Legalism is saying you will obey for the purpose of being saved or so God will love you or to earn merit. Any entity that tells you don’t have to keep the commandments is part of the power that wars against God in Dan. 8.

 

What is so bad about Babylon? This entity is opposing the ministry of Christ. People are hearing time and time again that it doesn’t matter what you do. That all roads lead to heaven. But what Jesus says is that this little horn power will one day be destroyed. Even worse, Babylon wars against the continual ministry of Jesus Christ through its human traditions. It is only through Jesus Christ that our sins can be forgiven. It is only through Jesus’ merit that our prayers will be heard. Anyone can prayerfully open God’s word and He will meet them there. It is only through the continual ministry of Christ that we can have victory. Anyone or any institution that says otherwise is part of Babylon.

After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory. And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen…. Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. For her sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities. Rev. 18:2, 4-5.

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