Sunday, January 26, 2014

Getting Closer To Jesus

     For today's bible study we will look at John the beloved disciple who got the closest to our Lord Jesus. John, unlike the other eleven disciples, decided to constantly be near Jesus in the garden of gesthemane. I pray in Jesus name we can all be like John and daily walk close to Jesus to overcome this world. Notice that John in the picture above at the Lord's supper leaned on Jesus' bosom and laid his head on Jesus' breast. John 13:23 says Now there was leaning on Jesus bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved. Two verses down at John 13:25, it says He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it? John was so close to Jesus on his bosom and breast that John heard the heartbeat of God. Friends, let's all walk so close to Jesus like John that we can hear the heartbeat of God.

     You might say how do we know that John was the unnamed beloved disciple in the gospel of John. If we look at John 21 we see that Peter wanted to know if the unnamed beloved disciple who leaned on Jesus' breast would not die. The apostle John proclaimed himself at John 21:24 that he was the unnamed beloved disciple stating This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things; and we know that his testimony is true. I believe that John did not state his name as the beloved disciple because John was humble. John did not proudly state I am the beloved disciple, or I am the disciple that outran Peter to see Jesus' empty tomb.

     Friends, pictured above we see a blessed painting of what Jesus saw from the cross. We see that John was the only one of the twelve disciples at the cross with Jesus comforting the three Mary's. John walked the closest to Jesus of all the disciples and had the honor of hearing Jesus at the cross say John take care of my mother Mary. John 19:26 tells us When Jesus therefore saw his mother and the disciple standing by, whom He loved, He saith unto His mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith He to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

     John had the honor of taking Jesus' mother Mary home with him, and John took care of Mary until she died. John then became the pastor of the church of Ephesus. As John began to preach and call people liars that deny Jesus as God and hate their neighbors, people were offended by John's preaching and wanted to get rid of John and make him an exile on the island of Patmos.

     The people that heard John's preaching wanted to silence John and did not like his preaching. They said that John was too negative and was wrong for calling everyone a liar that denied Jesus as God. The people said John, you can tickle our ears and tell us funny stories, but don't get mean. John ignored the people's threats and kept preaching the following scriptures below that exposed liars. John rejoiced at the persecution and said at 1 John 1:10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us. Then John stated at 1 John 2:4 He that saith I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar and the truth is not in Him.

     John kept preaching and stated at 1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ (defined as Messiah with the same meaning as Emmanuel or God with us; note John says a man is a liar that denies that Jesus is God) He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. Finally, John stated at 1 John 4:20 If a man say, I love God and hateth his brother, he is a liar; for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?

     The apostle John was a hero to Brother Bob and would tell preachers to do Isaiah 58:1 and Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. John would remind his church members of 2 Timothy 4:2 to preach the word, be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine; For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

     The apostle John would preach Isaiah 30:9 and tell his church That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the Lord, which say to the seers, see not; and to the prophets, prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophecy deceits. As a result, history records that people who hated John tried to kill him by placing John in a boiling pot of oil.

     Jesus would not allow the people to kill John, as John survived the boiling pot of oil. Jesus kept John alive because John had to go to Patmos to write the book of Revelation. Jesus also did not allow the apostle Paul to die after a stoning at Lystra, because it was God's will for Paul to minister at Rome. After the apostle Paul was stoned at Lystra and left for dead, Paul just squirmed his way out of the pile of stones and kept preaching at other cities. Friend, reading this like John and Paul, remember you won't die until God gets you where He wants you to go. Romans 8:31 says If God be for us, who can be against us?

     Pictured above, after the people could not kill John in a boiling pot of oil, they decided to exile John on the island of Patmos. John became like a christian described in Hebrews 11:38 of whom the world was not worthy. The people put old John on a ship and took him out in the middle of the ocean to an island named Patmos, saying let's dump that old bird off and let him starve to death. History records that on the way over to Patmos, John saved many people and led them to Christ.

     Pictured above, John was 93 when he arrived at Patmos, and John said Lord Jesus is there anything else I can do for you? Jesus replied yes, John take that parchment with a pen and write down what you see. Jesus told John at Revelation 1:18 I am He that liveth and was dead and behold I am alive forevermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death; Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter.

     John then had the honor of being caught up to the third heaven where Paul got to go forty years earlier. Paul only caught a glimpse of paradise and the third heaven and did not write any description of paradise. But, John was given the honor to not only see the third heaven, but also write about the third heaven in the book of Revelation, because John walked the closest to Jesus of all the disciples. What a blessing John experienced stated at Revelation 4:1 that says After this I looked, and behold a door was opened in heaven, and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.

     After John got caught up to the third heaven, John was in the presence of the four beasts and 24 elders around the throne of Jesus. Friend, you might say how do I walk close to Jesus like John where I can see the blessed revelations of the kingdom? To answer this note that John was in the presence of the four beasts and 24 elders. The four beasts and 24 elders are the closest to Jesus in the kingdom because they constantly praise Jesus saying Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come and forevermore display humility before our Lord Jesus, as the 24 elders always cast their crowns before the Lord Jesus. Like John, I pray in Jesus name all my friends reading this can be humble and continuously praise Jesus for dying on the cross for our sins, as we are given the honor of being close to our Lord Jesus, the four beasts, and the 24 elders in the third heaven paradise kingdom.

        Pictured above, Jesus said to John what else do you see John; write it down. And John wrote Revelation 21:2 that says And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And John wrote these words of comfort at Revelation 21:4 that says And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away.

     Then Jesus said again to John what else do you see John; write it down. And John wrote Revelation 21:10 that says And He carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain; and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. Having the glory of God, and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. John got so happy that he continued to write at Revelation 21:21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, every several gate was of one pearl; and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass. And the city had not need of the sun, neither of the moon to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.

     But, John started to weep when he saw a book sealed with seven seals because no man was found worthy to open the book, loosing the seven seals thereof. But, quoted above, an elder in the kingdom said to John, Weep not John because Jesus, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.

     Revelation 5 speaks about John's vision of the book of seven seals and says And I saw in the right hand of Him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book to look thereon. And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.  

     John stopped weeping and started shouting all over God's good heaven because Jesus began to show him the 7 seals, the 7 trumpets, the 7 vials, the 7 angels, the 7 thunderings, and the 7 lightnings. And after John saw all that, he couldn't hardly handle it any more. And Jesus said John, you got anything else you want to say. Friend, turn in your bible to Revelation 22:20 to read the blessed words that John said. Revelation 22:20 says He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. (John said) Even so, Come, Lord Jesus.

     Neighbor, if you ever read the book of Revelation and read it in the Spirit, you will say along with John the words of the picture above; Even so, Come quickly Lord Jesus. People in church sing a song saying wait a little longer please Jesus, too many sinners wandering out in sin; that ain't what John said, John said Bless God, come on, lets get this thing started. John wasn't wanting it to last, and linger, and tarry, and carry on, and drag out to an end; John wanted Jesus to come and take him to the place he had just seen. I pray in Jesus name that we can all say along with John, even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus, as great peace and strength blesses every area of our lives.

     As always, it has been a blessing writing this bible study today and I pray in Jesus name that it will strengthen and give peace to all my friends. Feel free to email Brother Bob anytime at or write to Brother Bob Malkin, 2233 Pinetree Lane, Apt. N., Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068. (614) 604-7133. Till we all meet again soon to lift up our Lord Jesus, everyone have a blessed day.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Going On With Jesus

     Friends, today we will look at three special disciples named Peter, James, and John who went a little farther into the garden with Jesus. Remember, that last week we saw that 8 of the 12 disciples stayed at the edge of the garden by the gate, not willing to go on with Jesus. But, pictured above sleeping, Peter, James, and John were special and even though they fell asleep, they didn't lay down long, but continued to follow Jesus, ignoring the persecutions christians experience from the world for serving Jesus. I pray in Jesus name all those reading this can be like Peter, James, and John and forever go on with Jesus, rejoicing through the persecutions of this world for serving Jesus.

     Friend, are you willing to go on with Jesus into the garden, rejoicing to be counted worthy to suffer persecution from this world for serving Jesus.1 Peter 4:13 tells us But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings, that, when His glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you; on their part He is evil spoken of, but on your part He is glorified. James 1:2 says My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations. 2 Timothy 1:12 tells us For the which cause I also suffer these things; nevertheless, I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day.

     Neighbor, we should rejoice when the world persecutes us as we follow our Lord Jesus daily. I pray in Jesus name we can all be like the apostles and rejoice to be counted worthy to suffer shame for the name of Jesus Christ. I wish I could have seen and rejoiced with the apostles as they ran out of a house, leaping for joy because they were beaten for serving Jesus. Acts 5:40 tells us and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go, and they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.

     Now note that when the people with Judas came to arrest Jesus, all the disciples fled including Peter, James, and John. But, Peter and John did not stay gone long, and began to follow Jesus. Proverbs 24:16 says For a just man falleth seven times; and riseth up again; but the wicked shall fall into mischief. Friend if you have failed the Lord in the past, rise up again and continue to follow Jesus, knowing that the blood of Jesus cleanses you from all sin.

     John quit running and turned around and went back and followed Jesus into the courthouse. John went to the palace where they tried Jesus. John went out and got Peter and brought Peter in to the palace because John knew the high priest, and the high priest knew John, and John was allowed to bring Peter in with him. Peter couldn't have gotten into the palace if John didn't go get him. This was about the worst thing that happened to Peter. Peter would have never heard that rooster crow if he never went inside that gate.

     The bible speaks about John taking Peter into the palace where Jesus was tried and can be found at John 18:15 that says And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple (this was John who was humble and did not mention his own name in the gospel of John); that disciple was known unto the high priest and went in with Jesus into the palace of the high priest. But Peter stood at the door without. Then went out that other disciple, which was known unto the high priest, and spake unto her that kept the door, and brought in Peter.

     Jesus wanted Peter to enter the palace to fulfill a prophecy Jesus stated at Mark 14:29 that says But Peter said unto Him, Although all shall be offended, yet will not I. And Jesus saith unto him, Verily, I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. But, he spake the more vehemently, If I should die with thee, I will not deny thee in any wise. Likewise also said they all.

     OK, the above picture shows us what happened to Peter after John brought him into the palace where Jesus was being tried. This picture has to be one of the most anointed pictures Brother Bob has ever placed in his book for Jesus. Note that the picture accurately shows the damsel in the palace, the maid on the porch, and Malchus (the soldier whose ear Peter cut off that Jesus healed) all accusing Peter of being with Jesus, as Peter denies our Lord Jesus three times, as the rooster beside him crows twice.

     John 18:17 says Then saith the damsel that kept the door unto Peter; Art not thou also one of this man's disciples? He saith I am not. And Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. They said therefore unto him, Matthew 26:71 says this included a maid on the porch that said Peter was with Jesus, all saying Art not thou also one of his disciples? He denied it, and said I am not. One of the servants of the high priest, being his kinsman whose ear Peter cut off (Malchus), saith, Did not I see thee in the garden with Him? Peter then denied again (note Matthew 26:74 says Peter began to curse and to swear that he did not know Jesus); and immediately the cock crew.

     Take time to read how my good friend Pastor Sonny Mull described how Peter denied Jesus. This is anointed, so read it and rejoice for joy. First, a damsel in the palace accused Peter of being a disciple that followed Jesus, and Peter said I am not, I don't know the man. And then a maid on the porch accused him and he denied it again. And then Malchus, the soldier whose ear Peter cut off in the garden, He said, You are one of them, I saw you in the garden. I'm sure Malchus had a good memory of Peter as the man who attacked him in the garden.

     And so in  order for Peter to escape these accusations, Peter had to curse and swear that he did not know Jesus. Some of you boys down at your workplace will tell a dirty joke so your coworkers will leave you alone. You don't want to be too religious because your coworkers will pick on you. So you'll curse and swear like the rest of them so they'll think you're just another old joe that wants to be friends. Bless God friend, be a man on your job, willing to be persecuted for Jesus, and stand up for Jesus, stand up for Jesus.

     By the time Peter got done cussing and swearing that he did not know Jesus, the rooster crowed Er, Er, Er, Er, Er and old Peter bong fell on his face and started squalling. We got a preachin chicken and a chicken preacher face to face. But the fact is this friend, Peter, James, and John were three special disciples that went a little farther in to the garden with Jesus. They might have fell down but they didn't lay down long. Peter wept bitterly and repented that he denied Jesus three times and became one of the greatest preachers that ever lived.

     Now after Jesus was crucified and died, Peter and the disciples again got discouraged and decided to go fishing shown by the two pictures above, as Peter fished naked. Take time to read how my good friend Pastor Sonny Mull described how Peter and the disciples got discouraged and decided to fish instead of preach about Jesus. After Jesus died, Peter said I go a fishing. And the rest of the disciples said Wait a minute, We'll go with you. When Christ died, the disciples thought well it's all over, we might as well go back to fishing; And they were out there in the boat fishing all night and hadn't caught a thing.

     And at daylight, Jesus was on the shore walking and the disciples didn't know who it was. And Jesus said, Children have ye caught any fish? And the disciples realized it was the Lord. And I'll tell you what, Peter was fishing stark raving naked. I wonder how come those disciples couldn't keep their clothes on. And John said, It's the Lord and Peter grabbed a garment, wrapped it around him, and jumped in the water and swam to shore, while the rest of the disciples paddled a boatload of fish to shore.

     Sonny's little sermon above can be found at John 21 that says After these things Jesus shewed Himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise shewed He Himself. There were together Simon Peter and Thomas called Didymus and Nathaniel of Cana in Galiliee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples. Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.

     John 21:4 goes on to say But, when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. Then Jesus saith unto them, Children have ye any meat? They answered Him No, And He said unto them, cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes.

     John 21:7 goes on to say Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved (note this is John who was humble and never stated I am the disciple that Jesus loved or I am the disciple that outran Peter) (Note also that John 21:24 proves that John is the unnamed beloved disciple in the gospel of John and says This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things; and we know that his testimony is true.) saith unto Peter, It is the Lord, Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, for he was naked, and did cast himself into the sea. And the other disciples came in a little ship; for they were not far from land, but as it were 200 cubits, dragging the net with fishes.

     Friends, notice that after Peter pictured above realized that Jesus was raised from the dead, Peter never quit or backed up again, and he never got naked again in public, as he became a great man of God. Pictured above, the bible says that once Peter got straightened out, old Peter would walk down streets by the blind, halt, lame, crippled, the lepers, the poor, the deaf, and the dumb, who laid on the sidewalk, and as Peter walked by while the sun was shining, every time Peter's shadow fell on somebody, they jumped up healed. I encourage everyone reading this to be like Peter and continue to daily go on with Jesus realizing that the blood of Jesus removes our past mistakes making us worthy to preach the gospel to the nations.

     The story about the picture above of Peter's shadow healing multitudes of people can be found at Acts 5:14 that says And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women. Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits; and they were healed every one.


     OK, to close out today's bible study, Brother Bob wants to share with all my friends a blessed revelation about John 3:16 that I heard J. Harold Smith preach who was one of the greatest preachers that ever lived. Notice that in John 3:16 we can see the word gospel. John 3:16 says For G God so loved the world, that He gave His O only begotten S Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not P perish, but have E everlasting L life. Also note that since the word valentine also appears in John 3:16, you can preach about John 3:16 on Valentine's Day. 

     And how about this, John 3:16 has 25 words and the the center word is Son or Jesus with 12 words before Son and 12 words after Son. Try writing out John 3:16 and make a cross through John 3:16 and the center of the cross will land on the Son Jesus.

     OK, since I'm at it how about another revelation from Philippians 4:4 that says Rejoice in the Lord alway; and again I say, Rejoice. To Brother Bob this scripture is telling us to keep rejoicing forevermore in the Lord Jesus. Rejoice again and again and after you have rejoiced, do it again and again, rejoicing in the Lord Jesus forevermore.

     I have truly enjoyed writing this bible study today and I pray in Jesus name it blesses all my friends everywhere. Feel free to email Brother Bob anytime at or write to Brother Bob Malkin, 2233 Pinetree Lane, Apt. N., Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068. (614) 604-7133. Till we all meet again soon to lift up our Lord Jesus, everyone have a blessed day in Jesus name.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Just Inside The Gate

     Today's message is about the four types of church members in the garden of Gesthemane. Pictured above you can count 8 of the 12 disciples who Jesus told to sit at the gate of the garden which represent one type of church member. We will discuss these 8 out of 12 church members who are in the church, saved, just inside the gate, but at the same time can reach out, touch, and enjoy the world. These 8 out of 12 church members play with the world a little bit, then get back to church, then play again with the world, and then get back again to church. Peter, James, and John represent the second type of church member and were the three disciples that went a little farther with Jesus into the garden.

     John represents the third type of church member that was the closest to Jesus and heard the heartbeat of God as he laid his head on the breast and bosom of Jesus. John was the only apostle to stay with Jesus at the cross along with the three Marys.  I pray in Jesus name we can all be like John and always be close to Jesus, hearing the heartbeat of God. Finally, Judas represents the fourth type of church member who aint never even got saved but yet is in the church. Friend, take time to meditate on Revelation 3:15 that says I know thy works, that thou art neither cold not hot; I would thou wert cold or hot. So then, because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold not hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

     Friends, let's go all the way with Jesus and not be lukewarm, totally leaving and denying this wicked world. Jesus showed Brother Bob that when anyone goes deep sea fishing as the boat leaves the shore for deep waters, the beach slowly disappears and eventually can not be seen. The beach represents the fading world and when we totally deny this world and launch out into the deep with Jesus, we walk in places where the world can not be seen any more. May we all be at the place of the safe deep waters with Jesus where we could not even remember, see, or think about going back to this fading world.

     The scripture that discusses these four types of church members in the garden of gethsemane is found at Matthew 26:36 that says Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane (defined as an oil press), and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, (note this is 8 disciples) while I go and pray yonder. And he took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee (these were the sons of thunder called Boanerges and were James and John) and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Then saith He unto them, my soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death, tarry ye here, and watch with me.

     Matthew 26:39 goes on to say And He went a little farther (Luke 22:41 says Jesus went a stone's cast farther into the garden) and fell on His face and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. Friend reading this are you willing to go a stone's throw farther into the garden with Jesus and take more time daily studying the Word and praising our Lord Jesus. Friend, how far is a stone's throw for you? Is it reading your bible every day of the year, praying three times a day, or denying some luxury to bless the poor with food and clothes.

     OK, for today we will discuss the 8 of 12 church members that sit just inside the gate of the garden and do not go any further with Jesus. These 8 of 12 church members are just worldly enough to be saved and just saved enough to be worldly. How does that work? It's like water and oil mixing. Friend reading this I pray in Jesus name you will be like one of the three disciples that desired to be closer to Jesus, and unlike King Agrippa who almost was persuaded to follow Jesus, we can all be as Paul stated at Romans 14:5 and be fully persuaded to always follow and live for Jesus.

     Our first example of a person who was like a disciple just inside the gate loving the world more than time with Jesus is Eutychus pictured above. Eutychus was a man in the bible sitting by a window of a third floor loft as the apostle Paul was long winded and preached until midnight. As Paul preached, Eutychus fell asleep and fell down three stories out of a window. The bible correctly named this man Eutychus because (you'd have cussed) too if you fell three stories out of a window. Paul went down and raised him from the dead, put him back in the meeting, and went on with the service.

     But, one must ask why did Eutychus fall out of the window instead of in to the church? The answer is because Eutychus desired to be more out with the world than in with the church. Friend reading this don't be like Eutychus and dibble and dabble at the edge of this world while you try to stay in the church. Let's all leave this fading world and go a little deeper into the garden with Jesus. Let's all go that stone's throw deeper into the garden with Jesus as we deny this world by living sanctified and holy lives for Jesus.

     The story about the above picture can be found at Acts 20:7 that says And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight. And there were many lights in the upper chamber where they were gathered together. And there sat in a window a certain young man named Eutychus, being fallen into a deep sleep; and as Paul was long preaching, he sunk down with sleep, and fell down from the third loft, and was taken up dead. And Paul went down and fell on him and embracing him said, Trouble not yourselves for his life is in him. When he therefore was come up again, and had broken bread, and eaten and talked a long while, even till break of day. So he departed. And they brought the young man alive, and were not a little comforted.

     Now I'll take time to describe these 8 of 12 church members like Eutychus just inside the gate who hold on to the world as they attend church and serve Jesus. At Christmas time these 8 out of 12 church members will be happy when the pastor gives them a brown bag with a banana, orange, tangerine, a candy bar, and some tracts. And after church is over, the tracts are all over the floor and out in the parking lot, but they got the bananas. These people don't care about the Word of God, but they want to get something from the church; What can the church do for me; Not what can I do for the church.

     OK, since we are talking about 8 of 12 disciples just inside the gate of the garden playing with the world, let's look at another place in the bible where Jesus left 9 not 8 disciples (including Judas) at the foot of a hill as Jesus took Peter, James, and John up to the mount of transfiguration. Because these 9 disciples were playing with the world, they lacked power to cast out a devil in a little boy.

     The bible tells us after Jesus left 9 disciples at the foot of a hill, Jesus was transfigured, holy ghost filled with shekinah glory, and the voice of God said this is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased, hear ye Him; and Moses and Elijah walked in a cloud with Jesus, and Peter said Jesus it's good for us to be here, let us make three tabernacles for thee, Moses, and Elijah. And Jesus said No, there's a little boy down at the foot of the hill who is possessed with a devil; We gotta go down there and help him.

     When Jesus got down to the foot of the hill, pictured above we see the daddy of the little boy walking up to Jesus and saying if you can will you help my son? You see before Jesus arrived, the 9 disciples were praying and praying, laying hands on the little boy, and begging to cast the devil out of this little boy, and nothing happened. They couldn't cast out the devil because they played too much with the world. So when Jesus finally got down off the mountain to the little boy, the father doubted whether Jesus could do any good for his son. The father said to Jesus if you can, 9 of your best men couldn't get it done; if you can.

     Friends, learn a lesson from this story and remember if we allow the world to take away our holiness and sanctification with Jesus, we won't have any power and people around us will begin to doubt Jesus Himself. Friends, let's walk holy for Jesus daily, denying this world, as we represent that Jesus can and will fix any problem. I pray in Jesus name we will never hear anyone say to us if Jesus can, if Jesus can. Friends let's leave from just inside the gate and go deeper into the garden with Jesus where nothing will be impossible for us all.  Brother Bob says according to Ephesians 3:20 Jesus can and is able to do exceeding, abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.

     The story about the above picture can be found at Mark 9:17 and says And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit; And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him; and he foameth and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away; and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and thy could not. Mark 9:21 goes on to say And He asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child and ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters to destroy him; but if thou canst do anything, have compassion on us, and help us.

     For our next picture we see that as Jesus prayed in the garden of gethsemane, all 12 disciples forsook and fled from Jesus. When the Jews came to the garden to arrest Jesus, the 8 disciples just inside the gate ran away and left Jesus alone. In fact, all the disciples ran away, including Peter, James, and John.

     And one of the disciples who was a young man was so scared that when a Roman soldier got a hold of him, he went plumb out of his clothes and went running through the bushes naked. This is recorded at Mark 14:50 that says And they all forsook Him and fled. And there followed Him a certain young man, having a linen cloth cast about his naked body; and the young men laid hold on him. And he left the linen cloth, and fled from them naked.

     The bible calls these 8 out of 12 church members that sit just inside the gate perpetual backsliders. Jeremiah 8:5 says Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return. These 8 of 12 church member just inside the gate get right once a year, and they last about a month, and then they're wrong again. They constantly dibble and dabble with the world and then go back to church over and over again. When the going gets rough, these people just quit. They are too close to the world to do any good for Jesus.

     For our final example today of church member just inside the gate we see Ananias pictured above who died along with his wife Sapphira because they both did not give all their riches to bless the poor and lied to Peter and the church. Ananias and Sapphira were members of the church. And old Barnabas had sold a piece of property and brought all the money and laid it at the apostles feet to distribute to the poor and the widows. And Ananias and Sapphira saw how everyone was patting Barnabas on the back and bragging on him and they said let's do that too; We're gonna bring some money too. So they vowed we're gonna sell a piece of property and we're gonna bring all the money into the church. Everybody thought Ananias and Sapphira we're doing real good and were going to be another Barnabas.

     Well they sold the property and God blessed them and they got more for it than they thought they was going to. So they said well nobody will know it; Let's keep back some of it. And so they put it in their pocket. And then Ananias came to church first. He walked in, laid the money down at Peter's feet. Peter said Is that all of it? Peter knew what was going on because God told him. Ananias lied and said, Yea, Yea, that's all of it. Peter said, Why have you lied to the Holy Ghost? The property was yours and you could do with it whatever you wanted to. Why have you lied to the Holy Ghost and kept back part of the money? Peter said, the feet of them that are gonna bury you are coming down the aisle now and Ananias dropped down dead. They wound him up, carried him out, and buried him.

     When his wife Sapphira arrived late for the meeting, Peter said did you and your husband sell the property for such and such. She said such and such. Peter said Why have you been privy to your husband's lie and lied to the Holy Ghost and kept back part of the money? The feet of those who just buried your husband are crossing the threshhold and coming down the aisle to get you now, and Sapphira dropped down dead. They took her out and buried her beside her husband.

     Friends reading this, note that Ananias and Sapphira were members of the church and saved, but they were lying dogs, thieves, and robbers. Because Ananias and Sapphira ignorently lied to God right in the church, in front of the altar, in front of the preacher, God just killed them. You can read about Ananias and Sapphira at the end of Acts 4 and Acts 5.

     When Brother Bob thinks about Ananias and Sapphira, I think about 1 John 3:17 that says But whoso hath this world's good, (note this says if you have the money to bless the poor) (but if you don't have money to bless the poor just listen to and consider the poor) and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? Ananias and Sapphira were wealthy and not willing to share their money with the poor because they kept back part of the price of the land. I pray in Jesus name for anyone reading this with great riches and wealth that they will not be like Ananias and Sapphira and have compassion on poor strangers, orphans, and widows and use their money to feed and clothe the poor around us all. Remember when we bless the least of the poor around us, we bless Jesus.

     As always it has been a blessing writing this bible study today and I pray in Jesus name it strengthens and encourages all my friends everywhere. Feel free to contact Brother Bob anytime at or write to Brother Bob Malkin, 2233 Pinetree Lane, Apt. N., Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068. (614) 604-7133. Till we all meet again soon to lift up our Lord Jesus, everyone have a blessed day in Jesus name.