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Raging, Rebellion, & Resurrection, Part 2
by Alex M. Lindsay
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Reference: Psalm 2:1-12

Let's look at some events from the Gospels, that reveal the raging and rebelling of this world.

"And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed." (Luke 2:1)

So, what's wrong with governments requiring taxes? Read Romans 13:1-7. Taxes are normal and ordained of God. But consider the decree to "all the world." The problem of world domination has been brought to our attention since the days of Daniel. Ever since Nebuchadnezzar had his dream (Daniel 2) we have had kingdoms that have strived to conquer the whole world. Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and then Rome have all been in a succession of campaigns to control everybody.

Back in the days of Nimrod and the tower of Babel, the world tried to unite in rebellion against God and any future judgement that He might ever make (Genesis 11:1-11 cp. Proverbs 11:21; 16:5). God divided men, so that they would not collaborate so easily. But the worst is yet to come.

In a future unholy Babylon, led by Antichrist, there will be the strongest effort ever made to lead the world in a united front against God and His anointed One (Revelation 13:1-18; 14:6-11; 17:1-18; 18:1-24). So, Caesar's decree is an expression of the totalitarian "rage" that this world has about God's control of the world. Yet, God used that decree to fulfill his promise that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem (Luke 2:1-7 cp. Micah 5:2).

"Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false counsel against Jesus, to put him to death." (Matthew 26:59 cp 26:59-68; 27:1-2)

Here are "the people" imagining and plotting a vain thing. A righteous man, that truthfully revealed Himself to be the Son of God, is going to be put to death. Because He was without fault, they had to lie and scheme to make it look legal. His demonstrations of power and goodness through miracles only hardened them to hate Him more and consider Him a threat (John 11:38-57; 12:10-11). Satan had truly blinded them. They did not really know what they were doing (Luke 23:33-37). Yet, they were willing to be blinded by their own wicked greed and pride (I Corinthians 2:7-8; II Corinthians 4:3-4; Acts 2:22-24; 3:17-20).

More Raging and Rebelling

  • "… Let him be crucified…. His blood be on us and on our children…" (Matthew 27:15-26)
  • At the rebellious demands of Israel's leaders and a mob of Israelites, Rome officially raged against the Lord and His anointed by crucifying Jesus. They beat Him, mocked Him, and called Him "The King of the Jews" (Matthew 27:26-37)
  • " They set a guard to make sure Jesus' body stayed in the tomb. That was a vain thing! (Matthew 27:62-66 cp. 28:1-4)
  • " Israel's leaders tried to bribe the soldiers, so that they would lie about the resurrection. That was a vain thing! (Matthew 28:11-15 cp. 28:16-20)
  • " Israel's leaders tried to stop the spread of the Gospel by beating and threatening the Apostle's. That was a vain thing! (Acts 4:13-22 cp. 23-31 - note vs. 25-26)
  • " One prominent leader of Israel (Saul, who became Paul) tried to destroy the churches by terrorizing, imprisoning, and killing the followers of Christ. That was a vain thing! (Acts 7:54 - 8:4; 9:1-16)
  • " Herod tried to persecute the followers of Jesus and please the Jews. That was a vain thing! (Acts 12:1-24)
  • " The leaders of Israel and some of the people of Israel tried to kill Paul and stop his testimony for Christ. That was a vain thing! (Acts 21:27-40; 22:22-23; 23:10-24) Their persecution sent Paul to Rome, where the gospel spread further!

No matter how much this world rages and rebels, the resurrection of Christ is the final word of victory! He is alive! He reigns forever more! On whose side are you?
See Psalm 2:1-12; Acts 2:22-28; 3:13-26; 4:24-28; 17:1-34; Romans 10:9-11; II Timothy 2:1-13; Revelation 1:5-7, 18; II Thessalonians 1:7-12.

Originally delivered April 29, 2018
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