Mark 10: Children, Breastfeeding, etc.


November 16, 2014

Mark chapter 10 on Wednesday night I didn't have a chance to finish the chapter because I got a little bit bogged down just on the first 12 verses because it's such an important doctrine in the day that we live to cover those doctrines that Jesus taught about marriage and divorce. A lot of people will try to twist scripture and find all kinds of ways not to accept the clear truth that Jesus teaches here. I'm not going to re preach that sermon, I'm going to skip past that and start in verse 13.

I'll just read for you verses 11 and 12, what we covered on Wednesday night which is basically Jesus' final word on the matter. He says in verse 11, "he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery." Beginning in verse number 13 the bible reads, "And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."

Flip over if you would to Luke chapter number 18, keep your finger on Mark 10 we'll be back there. Go to Luke chapter 18 to the parallel passage, because in this scripture people are trying to bring their little children unto Jesus. They want to get their little child around Jesus so that he can touch them and they can see him and get that exposure unto Jesus and people are rebuking them. Jesus' disciples are rebuking them saying, "get these little kids out of here, they don't need to be here." Jesus was very displeased and said, "No, suffer the little children to come unto me for of such is the kingdom of God." Why would people have said, "get these kids out of here" or "these little kids don't need to be here"?

Look at it in Luke chapter 18 beginning in verse 15 it says this, "they brought unto him also" what? "infants" they brought him also infants. The definition of an infant is a child that's so young that it's not yet walking. This is a baby that is not yet a toddler, not yet an infant, and basically a child starts walking around 1 year old. These are children even in the first year of life, infants, babies. It says in verse 15, "they brought unto him infants, that he would touch them: but when his disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein."

Flip back to Mark chapter number 10. What do we see here? They don't want the children or the babies to be brought to Jesus, probably because they're thinking to themselves this baby can't even understand Jesus' preaching and teaching which is true. Obviously an infant is not able to comprehend the English language and all of the infants that are in the service tonight do not understand the words that are coming out of my mouth right now. Yet Jesus said that it was still profitable to be brought up unto him and he did touch them, and he did bless them, and pray for them and so forth. At our church we have the children in the service with us. This is something that almost no Independent Fundamental Baptist Church does.

They have a thing where they pull all the babies and young children out of the service and they put them in what's called the nursery where they're segregated from the rest of the family. Even if you show up at these churches as a visitor they'll say, "We had a nursery provided, just step right over here and drop your kid off here with strangers." I don't want to go somewhere and drop my kid off with strangers. In fact, I don't even want to drop my kid off with people that I know. I want my children to be cared for by their mother and especially not be pressured or forced to put my kids with strangers or in another room with other people somewhere and to take them out of the service. A lot of churches will even go so far as to take the kids out of the service all the way up to the age of 12 into a junior church. Usually they at least pull them out up to age 4. A lot of times it will go up to 8 or ten or whatever.

Here's the problem with that. These kids are growing up and they're not used to being church. If you think about it if you have a baby and it's in church from the time it's born it gets used to the singing, the preaching, is just used to being here and it's going to behave better in church when it gets older just because it's been there from day one and learned the ropes. Not only that, the most impressionable time in a child's life is the first 2 years of development. It's been scientifically proven over and over again that babies are picking up way more than you think. They're like a little blank sheet of paper, a little sponge just absorbing everything. Even if they don't understand the preaching, even if they don't understand the hymns, even if they didn't know that it was Jesus that they were Jesus seeing and that Jesus was speaking to them. I think it did these children and these infants good to be around Jesus at that young age and get that exposure to him.

Children pick up way more than you think by being in the service. An infant doesn't understand much but they're still getting used to what church is like. They're getting used to the sound of a preacher's voice, they're getting used to the sound of what the hymns are like. Even in the womb children develop musical taste and musical preferences. They're picking up more than you think. Especially when they get into ages like 1, 2, 3, 4 and they start actually understanding things and they pick up way more than you think. You say, "no we need to pull them out and put them in a service where it's on their level" but usually what on their level means is just completely dumbed down, completely positive only, completely fun fun rah rah and that's really not what church is like. What'll happen a lot of times is you'll stick kids in a service where it's just "somewhere in outer space" and there are all these wild times. He's your cookie, here's your kool-aid, and it's fun.

By the way, 9 times out of 10 the Sunday school teacher is a woman in these nurseries or children's church. They're getting programmed of going to church, being taught the bible by a woman, wild music, positive only message, on and on and on. Guess what? These kids are growing up in Independent Fundamental Baptists Churches and when they become an adult they don't go to a church like Faithful Word Baptist. You know what kind of church they go to? A church where there's a woman preacher, a church where the music's wild and it's fun, the animal crackers and kool-aid become Starbucks and a scone. It's just a dumbed down 15 minute sermon, 20 minute sermon, it's all nice and everything like that. Why? Because you programmed those children from a young age of this fun fun fun rah rah.

At least by bringing your kids to a church like this at least they're learning that church is hard preaching, long preaching, it's the old hymns. We're serious about it, it's not a game, it's not all positive. It's both positive and negative and it's great for the kids to be in a church like this from day 1. People will say, "they disturb the service." Honestly, it's worth it. "Suffer the children" he said. That means put up with the inconvenience of the children because "of such are the kingdom of God." Jesus says allow the children to be with us. If you look at the life of Moses, Moses was raised by his mother only while he was breastfeeding, that's it. If you remember the story with Moses this was at a time in Egypt's history when they were killing the Hebrew male children because they were threatened by the Israelites. They had a law that if the Israelite women had a male child they would cast it into the Nile river.

Moses was hid for 3 months by his parents. After 3 months of hiding baby Moses they knew they couldn't hide him forever. He got to that age where he's making more age and he's just not able to be concealed. She put Moses into a little ark in the bulrushes and it was a little basket that floated down the river. Then his sister Mariam who was just a little child, what was she 6 years older than him or whatever it is. Followed along to see what would become of the child and to watch baby Moses. If you remember Pharaoh's daughter found baby Moses and was going to raise him but she said unto Mariam to call the Hebrew woman to go ahead and nurse the child. She said, "hey should I call one of the Hebrew woman to nurse this child for you?" She says, "sure, go call her." Of course Mariam goes and calls Moses' mother. He actually got to go directly back to his mother.

Pharaoh's daughter says, "take this child and nurse it for me and I'll give thee they wages." She takes the child, nurses it, gets it weaned, and then gives it back to Pharaoh's daughter to be raised by her. How long did Moses' mother have baby Moses? A very short time. No more than he was 2 years old because by the time he was 2 years old I was certain that he was weaned. I don't believe in this weird stuff about they breastfed babies until they were 5, 6 years old. That's weird and I've already proved that wrong from the bible in other sermon. I don't have time for that tonight. The bottom line is she only had him for those first couple of years. The couple of years that people would think they're not really learning anything yet, they're too young to understand yet. That's all she even had with baby Moses, just those couple of years. The rest of the time he was trained up in all the learning of the Egyptians and he was raised by Pharaoh's daughter. What happened when he became an adult?

"By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward." Those were the seeds that were ingrained in him as a little baby on his mother's breast, that's where he learned those things. He grew up and led the people free, why? Because he'd been raised by a Godly mother and father even for the first 1 or 2 years of his life they were able to have that. All that Egypt training could not eradicate what he got in that first couple of years. Obviously the singing of praises to God unto him as a baby, as they rocked the baby.

I know that when we take Boaz and take him on a walk or try to calm him down, one of the best ways to calm down a baby is to sing to them. Every baby has their favorite songs that when nothing else will work you pull out that song and it always works. Boaz' favorite song is Jesus Loves Me and it's a great song. He loves that song and that song will always calm him down, even if he rejects all the other songs. I don't know what songs Moses' mother was singing to him but they heard him praying and talking about God's word and singing the songs. It made a profound influence on his little infant mind, his little child's mind. We should not underestimate that. It's very important that we as a church understand that children should be welcome in the service. We have all these babies and children, it's a blessing, we love it. This is the next generation that even from the very beginning ...

The bible says, in fact let's go there I think it's in Isaiah 56 whom shall he teach doctrine. Is that in Isaiah 56? Where is it, does anybody know? I'm looking at people that I think know. I think it's in Isaiah 56, it's not in my notes. Maybe that's not where it is.

Congregation: Isiah 28.

Pastor Anderson: 28, oh man. Is that 28? Okay, I was way off good night. Isiah 28, maybe we're just on a wild goose chase and it's not even in 28. Oh, there it is. It's Isaiah chapter 28, look at verse 9. Isaiah 28 verse 9, this is a great verse. It says, "Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:" He's saying look, that baby that's just fresh of its mother's breast is learning doctrine. He's saying it takes a long time to learn all the truths of God's word, you can't learn it all in one shot. It's got to be line upon line, precept upon precept and such a blessing to grow up in a Christian home and be taught from birth the word of God and learn these truths as you go. It's a wonderful thing. We love having the babies in the room.

You say, "It's a distrubance to have babies and children, infants." A lot of people say, "it will work in a small church but it won't work in a big church." That's not true because our church gets bigger and bigger and it just keeps working.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: We counted before on a Sunday morning when we had 130 people that 50 of them were 12 and under. Did you hear that? 130 people in the service, 50 of them were 12 years or under. When we say 12 and under, there were only a few that were close to 12. The vast majority was 6 and under or 4 and under. We have tons of babies and little children in this service, and yet we're able to have services and have a peaceful service and we don't have a problem. It's not a disturbance. We don't expect it to be where you can hear a pin drop or something, where it's just that quiet like we're having some liturgy or we're deep in meditation and lighting candles here. This is a Baptist church and I can out scream your kid any day of the week. If you're kid wants to start screaming I'll just get louder.

Honestly, that's why we have these rooms in the back with the windows so if your child does act up or if your child is crying and throwing a fit you're supposed to take your kid back there and get it calmed down. The goal is to have your kid out here in the main auditorium as much as possible to try to get them trained and get them learning how to be good in church. By the time they get a little older you'll be surprised by how well they behave in church because they've been doing it since birth, they've been learning and practicing. Are there going to be times when they have a meltdown? Of course and I don't mind one bit and neither should you be irritated. "These brats, these infants, these babies." You know what? They're a blessing. We love them and we want them to learn the bible and learn what it's like to be in church and so forth.

If you have a child that you're struggling to get to be good in church, the best way to train your children to sit still and be good in church is to read the bible to them at home on a daily business. If you line the children up at home and read the bible to them on a daily basis and expect them to sit still and be good then they're already in that habit and they understand what it's like to sit still and listen to the bible. You wonder why all the kids have ADD and ADHD and they just can't pay attention and focus. You know why? Because of sitting them in church and instead of sitting them down and reading them the bible or even reading them other books and having a story time, it's a lot easier to just stick them in front of the TV.

There's a big difference between setting your kids on your lap and reading them a story or also sitting them down and lining them up and reading them the bible and putting them in front of the TV. There's all these explosions and flashing and exciting and the thing changes. The camera angle's constantly changing and the story's constantly changing and the commercial break. Then you wonder why they can't sit for 60 minutes and listen to the bible being preached. They've just become so dumbed down and have no attention span anymore because of all the TV, video games, and not enough reading, not enough bible preaching and church. Then you want to take them to ADD Baptist where you stick them in some "All right kids, woo woo" some wild "Father Abraham right arm, left arm, right leg, left leg, Father Abraham had many sons."

Then they grow up and where do they go to church? "Oh, church is boring." No, you have no attention span. You're immature, you're acting like a little kid, you need to grow up. That's why we need to start with little kids and teach them that church is a place where you sit down and listen to the word of God. If you look at the stories about when Jesus preached people sat and listened to him for hours.

Congregation: Right.

Pastor Anderson: In the old testament they sat and listened to preaching for hours and they wanted to hear the word of God. They weren't all fidgety because they "can't believe that we sat there for an hour. The pastor preached for an hour." Even Fundamental Baptist Churches are preaching for 20 minutes now. Maybe they just don't have a lot to say. I have a lot to say.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: I'm not going to preach for 20 minutes, I'm going to preach for an hour and a half. I'm just kidding, sometimes. I do that sometimes. Sometimes I do. Did I have you turn anywhere special or are we still on Mark 10? Yeah, and let me say this too. We talk about the infants and those that are drawn from the breast, some churches too they need to get off this thing of being scared of breastfeeding. We live in a culture where women don't breastfeed. Honestly biblically breastfeeding is a good thing. Throughout history that's how women have fed their kid for the last 6,300 years. All of a sudden we live in this society where it's all bottle fed. People are squeamish because of all the bottle feeding that took place in the 1950s basically people are squeamish now about breastfeeding. Let me say this, whatever they were doing in the 50s to raise kids didn't work, period.

Congregation: Right.

Pastor Anderson: I'm not going to use that as a guideline.

Congregation: Yeah.

Pastor Anderson: Don't read any parenting book that was written in the 40s, 50s, 60s, because they raised the worst generation of young people that basically destroyed our country. You need to watch out for this overly sanitized, overly bottle fed medicalized strange sterilized kind of parenting. For thousand of years women have had a more natural life and breastfed their children. Because we're in a culture in America where a lot of women don't breastfeed, a lot of people are squeamish about breastfeeding. A lot of women who breastfeed are persecuted. You'll read about women being dragged out of a restaurant for breastfeeding. Have you seen these articles in the news where women are kicked out of a restaurant, women are kicked off of buses, women are kicked out of this place and that place for breastfeeding publicly. You say, "they shouldn't do it publicly" but here's the thing, anybody who knows about raising an infant that's exclusively breastfed you know that they eat every hour. Every hour when they're first born they don't eat every 4 hours.

If you do feed them every 4 hours there are other problems you're going to create. I can't spend the whole night on this, good night. Is this another Mark 10 1-12, I've got to move on here. If you breastfeed your child on demand, which is what I think is the right way to do it, which is how we do it, you're breastfeeding your child every hour. What are you going to just lock yourself up somewhere for a year and just breastfeed your kid? No. You live your life, you go to church, you go places and people just need to get over it and not think, "oh, it's obscene." There's nothing obscene about breastfeeding your child. I've been in churches where literally they said don't even put a blanket over yourself during the service because we might think you're breastfeeding and we don't even want to think about you breastfeeding. That's just weird, folks. That's why we have these all these rocking chairs all over the auditorium so that women ...

Those aren't for you young guys to chill out after a day of work and let's listen to this sermon. The reason we have these rocking chairs is for mothers to be able to rock their child, and breastfeed their child, and take care of their child. We are okay with it here. If anyone comes to you and persecutes you about breastfeeding at Faithful Word Baptist Church that isn't coming from me, that isn't coming from my life. That's not what we believe in. We have a policy that women are allowed to breastfeed at this church. Most churches I've been to, "Oh, you want to breastfeed? Let's lead you to a janitor's closet where we'll have a chair set up as the breastfeeding zone." They'll put you in a room with no windows in the janitor closet and say, "this is the breastfeeding area."

We went to a church before that had about 5,000 people in it and the breastfeeding room was a bunch of old dilapidated metal chairs right next to a bunch of bathroom stalls. It was like 15 dilapidated old metal chairs in a circle. You can't hear the sermon, you're sitting in a bathroom away from everything. It's ridiculous folks. Then what happens is a lot of women are like, "nuts to this, I'm just going to bottle feed because everywhere I go I'm being persecuted for breastfeeding." Get over it folks. By the way you don't have to bring a giant tarp and put it over you when you breastfeed. Here's the thing, if you want to breastfeed you child or you want to put a blanket over it or a nursing sling or whatever you want, go right ahead that is great. If you don't want to put a nursing sling or cover over it then don't, it's up to you how you breastfeed your child. Short of you completely removing your shirt, obviously within reason. You want to be modest as possible, but you don't have to sit there and think, "Oh man, I've got to go leave to breastfeed my child." No, you can sit in the service and breastfeed your children, that is our policy.

If somebody has a problem with that they can come up to me after the service and then they can show me in the bible where that's wrong. This is a really long book, it has 1189 chapters in it and I would love for them to show me where the bible says it's a sin for women to breastfeed their child in church, or breastfeed their child anywhere else for that matter. This is a normal part of life and we need to have a culture in our church that actually encourages women to breastfeed and doesn't make it as hard as possible. Say, "hey I know it's 115 degrees outside, but you need to put a blanket over your baby's head while it nurses". Anybody knows that if it's hot and stuffy and you put a blanket over a baby's head, what's it going to do? "Get me out of here you're suffocating me". Anyway I just wanted to put that out there because I want people to know where I stand, that's where I stand on it.

Like I said if you don't agree with it then that's okay. If you say, "You know what Pastor Anderson, I think you're wrong. I think women should go to another room to breastfeed." Or "I think they should have to be fully covered." If you think that you're welcome to have your own preferences and opinions, I'm welcome to my preferences and opinions. You're not allowed to impose your preferences and opinions on other people that don't come from the bible. If what you believe comes from the bible then great, let's preach it from the housetops and let's get all get on the same page and rally around your preference because it's biblical. If your preference or opinion is not biblical then you need to have that to yourself. The women who feel differently can do it their way, and the women who feel like you can do it their way as long as we're following the bible.

Since there's no bible verse anywhere that condemns public breastfeeding I'm not going to condemn it and neither should you. This is not some new stance, I've preached this before. I preached this many many years ago because remember [inaudible 00:24:48] your former pastor or the deacons or whatever, remember they accused me of being immoral for preaching what I just preached. How many years ago was that? 5, 6 years ago so already 5 or 6 years ago I was taken flack from this stance. I haven't changed it, I'm not going to change it. Try having 8 kids. Do you think that my wife as she cares for 8 kids says, "all right other 7 kids I'm going to go lock myself in another room and breastfeed for the next 45 minutes." Do you think that's what my wife does at home? What do you think my wife does when she's taking care of 7 kids and has to breastfeed the 8th? She pulls out her breast and puts it in the kid's mouth and breastfeeds the child, that's what she does.

It's just because you're in this overly medicalized bottle fed unnatural society that we live in. You're the one who has the issue, not mothers who are just trying to feed their kid. By the way, breastfeeding a child is challenging. A lot of women struggle with it and they throw in the towel. You're making it harder for them when you make them uncomfortable about doing the most normal thing in the world, the most natural thing ever. By the way, and this has nothing to do with the sermon either but since I'm already off on a tangent anyway, it just cracks me up about veganism. "Oh man, we just got to be so vegan. No milk, no dairy, no meat, no cheese." You know what's funny? It's impossible to be a lifelong vegan because when you're born you cannot be vegan because you must drink milk. In fact, this woman literally killed her child by trying to make it a vegan from birth.

The only thing, listen to me when a baby's born the only thing it can drink is breast milk. They can't even drink cows milk when they're born. Obviously formula is there, but formula is there to simulate breast milk, that's what it is. Throughout history formula hasn't existed. If a woman was not able to breastfeed you know what they had to do? Someone else would have to breastfeed it. They would have the wet nurse that would breastfeed it, or someone would have to pump and give them the milk and so on and so forth. You cannot raise the child vegan. I don't know what she was giving it, carrot juice or whatever it was she was trying to give this kid. She got in trouble for neglect, she was arrested because her child died because she's like, "I just want it to be so vegan from day 1. Just got to break the cycle of these animal products." They think we're animals too if you know what I mean.

In case you don't know what a vegan is it's somebody who's against drinking milk, eating cheese, eating eggs. Anything that has anything to do with any kind of animals or anything like that. We all started out consuming milk and non vegan. Nobody's been a vegan their whole like, don't ever let anybody tell you that because they would be dead if they tried to be a vegan their whole life. Let's actually get back to the chapter. Look at verse 17, I've got to hurry but look at Mark chapter 10 verse 17. Remember what Jesus said about suffering the children. He said "Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein." What did Jesus mean by that when he said you have to receive the kingdom of God as a child? Is he saying that if you don't get saved as a kid you're never going to get saved? No, there are a lot of adults who get saved. What he's saying is that you have to have a childlike faith in order to be saved.

What is a child known for? Totally relying on its parents, especially infants. They are totally reliant on their mother in every way to be fed, to be clothed, to be diapered. They can do nothing on their own. They have to fully rely on their parent to take care of them and that is how it is with salvation. You must fully trust in the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved. It's not partially your works and partially Jesus, no. The bible says, "it's not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us." The bible says, "from my grace are you save by faith, and that not of yourselves it is the gift of God, not of works thus any man should boast." We need to believe on, or fully trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for our salvation not trusting in what we're doing. I go to church, I live a good life, I have turned from my sins. That's not a childlike faith that fully trusts on our father in heaven. That's what he meant by that.

This is further illustrated the things are in the order they're in for a reason. We go straight from this suffer the children story straight into the story of the rich young ruler. About a guy who's not fully trusting in Jesus, a guy who's not fully trusting in the Lord but trying to earn his way to heaven and work his way to heaven. Which makes sense to come right after Jesus said if you don't enter the kingdom of God as a little child, you shall not enter therein. That's the only way to get in. A child doesn't earn their way into your family do they? An infant? Remember we're talking infants. "You better start pulling your weight around here Boaz. I'm sick of you relying on us for everything. I know we do our part, but it's time for you to start doing your part, Boaz." Ga ga ga goo, he doesn't know what I'm saying. Think about how silly that is, that's what Jesus is trying to teach us.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: Look at verse 17 because this is a very often misunderstood story. "when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God." Don't miss that verse because that is another key verse to understanding story. He flat our tells him there's none good but one and that's God. Here's the most bizarre thing ever, the Jehovas false Witnesses will try to use this verse to say that Jesus is not God. That just shows you how blinded they are.

Congregation: Damn right.

Pastor Anderson: Every Jehovas Witness that I talk to I always say this to them, "Do you believe Jesus is good?" "Of course Jesus is good." Then he's God. Right here he says somebody calls him good and he says "why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, and that's God." He's either saying 1 of 2 things. He's either telling this guy I am not good, or he's telling him I am God.

Congregation: Good. That's right.

Pastor Anderson: That's the only way to intepret this. He says why are you calling me good and there's none good but one and that's God. Either he's saying, "Hey, don't call me good because I'm not good." Who here believes that Jesus is not good? Who thinks that contradicts a lot in the bible. To say Jesus isn't good. Over and over again the bible talks about how good Jesus is and that he's the good shepherd and that he's good. He went about doing good. That he's the spotless sinless lamb of God. He was tempted at all points like as we are yet without sin. It's bizarre to take this statement and to use it to say Jesus isn't God. No, no, no. He's good which means he's God. Also by the way you have to understand that Jesus is answering him in a tricky way when he says that, isn't he?

Congregation: Yep.

Pastor Anderson: Guess what? The rest of what he says to the guy's a little tricky. That's just how Jesus was. He would talk to people in parables and dark sayings. Those that are wise, those who have the holy spirit understood his words. Those who are unsaved, unwise, in the dark. They would walk away from Jesus perplexed and didn't understand. The disciples said, "why don't you clearly explain things to this people?" He said, "No, unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God. To them it is not given." He spoke in a way that sometimes we would almost think of it as a riddle. That's how it is when you read the 4 gospels. He speaks to people in a way where they have to think. He doesn't just dumb everything down, that's what he did.

Let's read the story he says, "there is none good but one, that is, God. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother." Watch this, "And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth." Is this guy listening to Jesus at all? What did Jesus just finish telling him? Nobody's good. Jesus just finished telling him there's none good but one and that's God. What's this guy basically saying? "I'm good. Here's all the commandments and I've kept all of them." How about now because if you did that would make you good. Jesus is already telling the guy, "You're not good, no one's good." He's just like, "I've done all that."

Watch this. "Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions." This guy thinks that he has to earn his way to heaven by doing things and being good. He shows up says what good thing, listen to me, what good thing shall I do? I've got it memorized from a couple other places so I want to make sure I'm reading what it says in Mark. "What shall I do?" If you go from Matthew he says, "What good thing shall I do to that I may inherit eternal life?" Here he says, "Good Master, what shall I do?"

He's trying to do something, he wants to do something. In the other one where it gives more detail in Matthew it's "What good thing can I do?" I want to do good things to earn my way into eternal life. Jesus tells this guy, "you're not good." "Oh yeah, but I keep all the commandments. I obey all the commandments." He says, "Okay let me point out one that you're not keeping, you're greedy. Sell what you have, give it to the poor, you'll have have treasures in heaven, follow me." He goes away grieved because he has great possessions. A lot of people will twist this passage and say, "You've got to be willing to sell everything to be saved. That's what Jesus is telling this guy." Or "you have to give up everything in your life and quit everything." That's what he's saying here. He's trying to expose to this guy that he's not as perfect as he thinks he is, that's what he's trying to show this guy.

When I go out soul winning and when I talk to somebody, if I can't get them to admit that they're a sinner, I can't really go through the rest of the gospel with that person. Point number 1 is we've all sinned and they can't get off the fact that they're not a sinner and I show them several verses how we've sinned. Nope, nope, nope. It's like see yeah. I think this is what Jesus is doing here.

Congregation: Right.

Pastor Anderson: If he can't get this guy to see he's a sinner, if he can't get this guy to see that he's not good enough to go to heaven by his own merits, what can he do for the guy? Look what it says in the next verse. In verse 23, "And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples," This is after the guy walks away and now he's talking to the disciples. "How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." Why is he saying it's so hard for them to trust in riches to be saved?

This is why, because people who trust in riches are self reliant independent people. When you're trusting in your own riches you're not relying on anyone else. You don't need anyone else, you have everything that you need. You're the type of person that always pull themselves up by their own boot straps. You can do things on your own, you don't need help from anybody, you always pay your own way. Guess what? When it comes to going to heaven you don't pay you're own way.

Congregation: That's right.

Pastor Anderson: You rely on someone else. You put your faith in someone else like a little child does and that's what rich people have a hard time with. In fact, the bible says it's easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to be saved because of the fact that trusting in riches creates the type of person that is unable to fully trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for their salvation because of their pride and because of their self reliance. Look what it says next, verse 26, "they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible." Some people will try to take a really weird interpretation of this passage and they'll say, "Actually pastor Anderson, if you would actually study" when they say study they don't mean study the bible, they mean study a bunch of nonsense, a bunch of fables, a bunch of man made theology books, and bible seminaries [inaudible 00:38:22] all this seminary garbage.

You'll talk to people who know so much theology, but then they don't know the bible though. Do I have my doctor spangle glasses, here we go. This is what they'll tell you, "Pastor Anderson, if you were to actually study the history and the culture that the bible was written in you would understand that when the bible talks about a camel going through the eye of a needle it's not really talking about the eye of a needle. What it's really talking about is there was this gate at Jerusalem known as the eye of the needle and it was a gate of Jerusalem was a very low gate. In order to get the camel through the gate you would have to fully unload the camel. If you fully unloaded the camel then you would get the camel to get on its knees. The camel would have to crawl through the gate on its knees totally unloaded and what Jesus is really trying to say here is that in order to be saved you have to unload everything spiritually. You have to get on your knees and..."

Here's the thing about that, here's what's so silly about that. By the way I looked in this book, this Zondervan Bible Dictionary and they had a picture of "this gate is the needle's eye". It's this tiny little gate and then right next to it there's this massive giant gate. I'm thinking, "here's an idea, let's walk through the big gate." It reminded me of when you're in a warehouse and you'll have those big warehouse doors and then you'll have those little man doors right next to it. That's what it looked like. It was like a little tiny man gate that was clearly for a human to walk through. Then there was a big giant gate for bigger loads to go through. Then they're saying ... I mean what kind of a city says, "Thank you for coming to our city, we're so glad you're here to do business, let's unload your camel, let's shove your camel through a tiny opening on its knees and then we'll reload it on the other side." These people have to be insane. They're nuts.

Congregation: That's right.

Pastor Anderson: "Oh, but Pastor Anderson you're just making fun of it Pastor Anderson just because you don't understand it. You just don't get it that the eye of the needle is not really the eye of a needle." Here's the thing, is it possible for a camel to go through that eye of a needle gate that they're talking about? That fake gate? Yeah, it just has to get on its knees and be shoved through on its knees with no load on the back. Hopefully it doesn't have a big load on the back that's going to get stuck on the way in. Jesus said it's impossible. Jesus said "it's easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle" and what was their response to them? "Oh, I get it. We have to unload the camel." No. Their response was, "It's impossible". Look down at your bible.

The answer, the proof is right here that this Zondervan bible dictionary and that all these seminaries ... If I had a nickel for every time somebody tried to tell me that the needle's eye is actually a gate at Jerusalem then I would be a very wealthy man because people have told me over and over again. "Did you know that it's not really the eye of a needle even though it says that in the bible?" These guys want to get you to think that you have to rely on them to learn the bible and that you can't read it on your own and take it for what it says. If you look at the story it says in verse 26, "they were astonished out of measure". Why would they be astonished out of measure if he's just talking about a small gate where it had to be unloaded? Why would that shock and astonish them? Why would they say, "who then can be saved?" If you say a camel going through the eye of a needle that's pretty shocking astonishing.

Then he says, "With men it is impossible" it's impossible for a rich man to be save. That's what he meant when he said the camel through the eye of the needle. He says, "with God all things are possible" that's the whole point. He says in this passage "that's it's those who trust in riches". Let me get NIV for you because the NIV is the most popular bible in America today. Go ahead and look up Mark 10:24 I want to show you why it's important that our church is King James only and why we only use a King James bible. A lot of people say, "That King James is too hard to understand." These modern versions corrupt and change doctrine on every page and that's what we did the movie, New World Order Bible Version.

I have to keep harping on it because of the fact that as sure as I'm standing here I've preached to so many people over the years and then they'll end up leaving the church and they'll go to some church that uses the New King James or the NIV and you're like, "Did you learn anything?" That's why I just want to make sure if they do it its not my fault because I taught it repeatedly. What does it say in ... Everybody you look down at your King James Bible and I want Brother Garrett to read from the NIV, the non inspired version Mark 10:24 nice and loud.

Brother Garrett: "The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go-"

Pastor Anderson: Hold on, what's missing? Did you notice what's missing? The NIV just says it's hard. In verse 24 it just said how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God. Is that what the King James said? No. The King James says how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God. No, it's not hard to drink a glass of water. No it's not hard to eat a piece of bread. No it's not hard to walk through a door. No it's not hard to call upon the name of the Lord. In fact, the bible teaches that it's easy to be saved because Jesus paid it all.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: How hard it it to receive a gift?

Congregation: Sure.

Pastor Anderson: Is it that hard to be born? It's hard for the mother. Who do you think was doing most of the work? Your wife Joan or baby Sethan? Who was doing the work? Yeah, exactly. He wasn't doing the work. When you're born again, Jesus did the work.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: This thing of it's just hard to be saved. By the way, they don't just change it in that one place. First they do it in Mark 10:24, oh it's just hard to enter the kingdom of God. Then when Jesus said "narrow is the way" they'll change that to "difficult is the way" even in the New King James. "Difficult is the way unto life and further be divine". No, it's not difficult. It's narrow meaning that few get there, few are saved. You know what? It's not difficult because Jesus did the difficult part when he lived a perfect life, when he died on the cross, was buried and rose again. He did the hard part, all we have to do is be like a baby. How hard is it to be a baby? How hard is it to be a little child and fully trust your parents? In fact, that's why the bible calls salvation rest.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: Rest is not hard. Let's keep reading in the chapter here. "Then Peter began to say unto him," verse 28 "Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel's, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last first." You know what I think is interesting about this is he says, if you've left, look at the list. If you've left house, brethren, sisters, father, mother, wife, or children, or lands for my sake in the gospels, what are you going to get a hundredfold of? Houses, brethren, sisters, mothers, children, and lands but he says "with persecution in this life and you're going to have eternal life in the world to come."

Wait a minute, what's missing. What do you not get 100 of Joseph Smith, what do you not get 100 of Brigham Young, what do you not get 100 of Mohammed? You don't get 100 wives. Do you notice that? He says if you give up, he lists everything you give up including wife, but then he says you'll get 100 of these things but he doesn't say you get 100 wives. Because you don't. God created us to be with just one woman and they too shall be one flesh. You say, "How do I end up with 100 children? How do I end up ... ?" Because every person that you win to the Lord is your child spiritually, that's what the bible ... Paul, when he won Onesimus to the Lord he said "Onesimus I begot him in my bonds." He called Timothy and Titus his sons in the faith, those he had begotten in the faith. If you win 100 people to the Lord you have 100 children spiritually. Not only that you say brothers and sisters. Guess what? In the local church here we're your brothers and sisters.

Maybe your brothers and sisters might hate you and persecute you because of you being a follower of Jesus Christ, but you gain a lot of other brothers and sisters don't you? You gain ... Maybe you even leave your native land to go to a foreign land in order to preach the gospel, to be a missionary or whatever the case may be. You give up your foreign land but you gain citizenship in heaven. You gain access ... You say houses. I'm not saying you're going to own a hundred homes, but there are probably 100 people that'll take you into their home. You have a home waiting for you wherever you go because you've got brothers and sisters in Christ and family. You're going to go through persecutions, you're going to suffer, but God's saying whatever you give up for Christ, he'll give you more. You'll always be better off making the sacrifices and serving the Lord.

"But many that are first shall be last; and the last first." Verse 32 "And they were in the way going up to Jerusalem; and Jesus went before them: and they were amazed; and as they followed, they were afraid. And he took again the twelve, and began to tell them what things should happen unto him, Saying, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be delivered unto the chief priests, and unto the scribes; and they shall condemn him to death, and shall deliver him to the Gentiles: And they shall mock him, and shall scourge him, and shall spit upon him, and shall kill him: and the third day he shall rise again." He's beginning to reveal that unto his disciples.

"And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, come unto him, saying, Master, we would that thou shouldest do for us whatsoever we shall desire. And he said unto them, What would ye that I should do for you? They said unto him, Grant unto us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left hand, in thy glory. But Jesus said unto them, Ye know not what ye ask: can ye drink of the cup that I drink of? and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with? And they said unto him, We can. And Jesus said unto them, Ye shall indeed drink of the cup that I drink of; and with the baptism that I am baptized withal shall ye be baptized: But to sit on my right hand and on my left hand is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared. And when the ten heard it, they began to be much displeased with James and John.

"But Jesus called them to him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them. But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister: And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." They want to have positions of preeminence and authority. They say, "Look, when you come in your kingdom we want to sit on your right hand and your left hand. We want to be your top disciples." These are James and John, they're brothers. These guys are really zealous guys. Peter's a very zealous guy in the bible and so are James and John and you've got to understand we don't want to be hard on these guys for being zealous and ambitious because honestly these are the guys Jesus spent the most time with, Peter, James, and John.

Sometimes they were a little bit misguided, they were a little too excited, a little bit too ambitious. Especially Peter would get a little over the top, whip our the sword, chop off somebody's ear. Say stuff without thinking about it. Some of these guys are a little bit of a loose cannon but at least Jesus did spend a lot of time with these guys and they really were the top 3 disciples, Peter, James, and John. Jesus has to put them in their place here and correct them for the fact that they want to be honored with these great positions of authority. It's true that we should want to achieve greatness for the Lord Jesus Christ and we should want to receive maximum rewards when we get to heaven and that should motivate us to want to reign with him and to want to earn status with him. They're taking it too far because they're saying, "we want to be at your right hand and on you left and we want to get the glory."

Basically when the other 10 disciples hear it it makes them upset like, "what are we? Why do you guys want to be exalted above us?" Jesus explains to them that "they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them. But so shall it not be among you:" watch this "but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister:" minister means servant. What he's saying is if you want to achieve greatness, you achieve it by being humble and serving. The bible says "humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and he shall lift you up." It's not wrong to want to achieve greatness, my friend. It's not wrong to be ambitious, to be excited, to be zealous and say, "I want to achieve maximum rewards, I want to achieve greatness." You have to follow the proper path to greatness and you know what the proper path towards greatness is? Humility and service.

These guys have their heart in the sense in the right place because they want to do great things for God. At least these guys aren't saying "I'm just satisfied being a mediocre Christian" could be worse, right? I thank God that James and John in this chapter aren't saying "I'm just satisfied being mediocre." Here's what's funny, if you talk to the Jehovahs false Witnesses, I already got on them a little bit earlier on the sermon so let's get on them again. These Jehovahs false Witnesses that come to your door, these false prophets and when you knock on their door you'll ask them, "Do you know for sure if you died you'd go to heaven?" They always say this, "I don't want to go to heaven. I'm just going to stay right here on this Earth." Here's the thing, they only believe that 144,000 of them are going to go to heaven. Who knows that? That Jehovas Witnesses only believe that 144,000 people are going to heaven. We believe that all believers are going to heaven. They only believe that only 144,000 are going to make it.

I've been soul winning now for 16 years of my life pretty much every week for the last 16 years and I've talked to hundreds and hundreds of Jehovas Witnesses. I've never met 1, I've never even met one that says 'I want to be one of that 144,000." What a bunch of losers. Think about it. If I was going to be a Jehovas false Witness I'd be like ... Look, we're not saying it's 144 people and you're like, "Oh man, I have no chance there's only 144 slots." There's 144,000 slots. How many Jehovas Witnesses are there even?

Congregation: 6 million.

Pastor Anderson: How many?

Congregation: 6 million.

Pastor Anderson: About 6 million Jehovas Witnesses. There's 6 million, can't you be in the top 144,00. Yet I've never met one that even says I'm trying. I'd like to. They're all like, "I don't even want to go to heaven. I'm just going to be on this Earth. I don't want to go to heaven." Don't worry, you're not unless you believe that Jesus bodily rose from the dead you won't get there anyway.

Congregation: That's right.

Pastor Anderson: It's just amazing to me that I've never met a Jehovas Witness that said, "I'm going to be 1." Has anyone here met one that said "I want to achieve that greatness"? Good night. How many of you have talked to Jehovas Witnesses out soul hunting who said, "I'm not going to heaven, I'm going to be on this Earth." Put up your hand. How many of them said "I want to be one of the 144,000 that gets to heaven." What in the world? Not even 1, unbelievable. At least they're not like the Jehovah Witnesses here where they just have no drive or ambition to achieve greatness for the Lord. At least they want to achieve greatness. They needed a little correction here to understand that as a Christian the way to achieve greatness is by being humble. If you humble yourself ... The bible says "whosoever humbleth themself shall be be exalted, but whoseover exalteth shall be abaced."

The bible also says, "let another man praise thee and not thine own mouth." We shouldn't praise ourselves. Oh, I am so wonderful. Did I mention to you what a great pastor I am because that's pride and arrogancy and that's what the Lord doth hate is pride and arrogancy is what the bible says. The path to greatness is being humble and serving others and helping other people and putting other people first. He said, "the last shall be first". You go last and God will put you first. Remember that when we're giving the cheeseburgers after service tonight because we're having a barbecue after the service. Just kidding.

It says in verse number 46, we're almost done with the chapter here it says, "they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me. And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me. And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee. And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus. And Jesus answered-" By the way, this shows that the garment is an outer garment here. Obviously he has other clothing underneath. He's casting away his outer garment.

It says, "Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight. And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way." I have to make one last point in closing here about the final verse, critical verse here in the bible. It's not the only verse of its kind. There are many other verses like this but it's an important verse because there is a false doctrine out there. This false doctrine of Calvinism teaches that it's not our faith that saves us, but rather it's the faith of Jesus that saves us. They'll take a verse Galatians that says the faith of Christ, but if you look at the verse and read the whole verse he equated the faith of Christ with faith in Christ. He's talking about us putting our faith in Christ. He calls that the faith of Christ.

The bible says, "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:" They'll try to say that the it there is saying that faith is the gift of God. "God gives you the faith to be saved." What they're saying that basically we don't believe in the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved, God picks who's going to believe on him and he makes them believe on him. He takes away our choice like we don't have a choice. The bible says, "I've set before you this day life and death." Choose life. Choose life.

Congregation: Amen.

Pastor Anderson: He says "Whosoever will" which means wants to "let him come take the water of life freely." The Calvinist says God chooses to give certain people faith and if God doesn't give you the faith you cannot be saved. They'll say this. They'll say, "it's not your faith that saves you. It's not your faith, it's the faith of Jesus." No, what does this say? "Go they way thy faith had made thee whole." Jesus told a woman even more clearly in the book of Luke, the woman who washed his feet with her tears and her hair, he told her "thy faith has saved you". "Thy faith has saved thee." "Your faith is" I think it's Luke 9:51 maybe "your faith has saved you." We don't have to work our way to heaven, we don't have to earn our way to heaven, we don't have to do good deeds, or turn up a new leaf, or give up our sins.

You know what we do have to do to be saved? We do have to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved. We have to believe. We do have to trust like a little child. We do have to have faith. To sit there and say we don't even have to do that, God will do that for us. No, wrong. That's a false teaching, we're not Calvanists. That's another sermon in and of itself. Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer. Father we thank you so much for this chapter, Lord. It's a great chapter, the only hard part about preaching it is to get through the whole thing in one service, Lord. That's why we didn't. Lord, I just pray that you would please just let these truths sink down into our ears. Help us to be. First of all I hope everyone here is saved because they fully trust in the Lord Jesus with that faith of a little child. Lord, also help us to be like a hungry newborn that desires the sincere milk of the word that we may grow thereby Lord.

Help us to be humble, help us to be servants, help us not to be pride and arrogant or trust in riches or trust in everything else, Lord. Help us to be humble servants of yours, Lord. Help us to do great things for you and to strive to achieve greatness as James and John did-