Peoples Temple Early Bible Interpretation

Lesson 1, P. 1

First book of Bible named Genesis from Greek Translation of Hebrew name “Beresheth” which means “in the beginning.” All Hebrew names of books taken from opening words.

1. Open declaration of Genesis – in the beginning God

2. List of beginnings mentioned:

a. Universe – Ch. 1:1

b. Human race – 1:27-2:7

c. Sin and death – 3:1-19

d. Redemption – 3:15

e. Prophecy – 3:15

f. Social corruption – 6:5-7

g. Nations – 9:10-11:9

h. Hebrew race – 12:1-3

i. Human instructions and relations

3. Divisions in Genesis

a. Creation and early history of the world and mankind: Ch. 1-11

(1) Man’s place in creation

(2) Presence of evil explained

(3) Origin of civilization and inventions

(4) Dispersion of mankind and origin of the various nations.

(5) Israel’s place among the nations.

b. History of the patriarchs or fathers of the Hebrew race.

(1) Abram

(2) Isaac

(3) Jacob

Illumination

Majestic Opening: In the beginning God created

1. Most important fact in the book.

a. No room for contradiction.

b. Who can disprove this statement?

c. No other logical explanation of creation.

d. No lengthy treatise of ‘How’ just ‘God created’.

2. Genesis account of creation reveals the unity, power, and personality of God – denies the following false beliefs about God.

a. Atheism – Genesis says “in the beginning God”

b. Polytheism – Genesis declares one God

c. Pantheism – Genesis declares God is before all things.

d. Materialism – Genesis declares God created matter.

e. Fatalism – Genesis declares God acts in the freedom of His Eternal being.

3. Four great questions of man answered in the book of Genesis, in simple and rational manner.

a. Origin of world

b. Origin of man

c. Origin of sin

d. Origin of redemption or reconciliation

A. Origin of world – Genesis has no argument with Science. No details or time records given, Bible not a scientific textbook. Room for myriads of opinions on how and when the divers [diverse] forms of creation took place without contradicting one word of the Genesis Account.

B. Origin of man – No known theory that has been proven can dispute the plain statement of Genesis that God formed man out of the dust of the earth and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul.

1. Ch. 1:26-27 says God created man in His own Image and gave him dominion over the balance of his creation.

2. Man superior to rest of animal creation

a. Had the gift of speech

b. Had wisdom – named the rest of creation

[no c. entry]

d. Had communion with God

e. Evolution the one major enemy of the Genesis account – evolution unproven.

3. Genesis introduces man and his creation but does not go into full detail about how many were formed or the exact nature of his first existence, or the exact time of his creation.

1. [4.] Many verses in Bible intimate that the spirit of man, that part of man that comes directly from God, was formed prior to the physical creation of man, or might have eternal qualities as God without beginning or ending. To draw your own conclusion compare the following Scriptures:

1. God referred to as the Father of Spirits: Hebrews 12:9

2. Spirit of Man returns to God who gave it: Ecclesiastes 12:7

3. God referred to as the God of the spirits of all flesh in Numbers 16:22. Note the plural form, Spirits.

4. Eternal life promised before the world began: Titus 1:2, 3

a. To whom was it promised? Christ as eternal with God could not have been the heir of eternal life.

5. Sons of God present at creation of the world: Job 38:7

a. Note again the plural form Sons

6. As many as led by the spirit of God are Sons of God in Romans 8:14

7. John says we are the Sons of God, I John 3:2. If we are the Sons of God we must be the class of persons referred to above in Job 38:7

8. We were chosen to be the Sons of God before the Creation of the world: Ephesians 1:4. Our calling given us before the world began: II Timothy 1:9.

9. We were foreknown by God. Romans 8:28, 29. What was the basis for this foreknowledge? Was it not that our Spirits were in His presence in the beginning and we were selected to come down to the earth and inhabit (illegible) Grace and Power of God in the redemption of our physical bodies. Christ said my meat is to do the will of Him that sent me. Can we say any less? Can we not say as much?

10. In the creation of Adam it is evident that a mature body was formed by God and the Spirit placed in it. With Jesus however the body was that of an infant yet God gave the Spirit to it. So in all the human flesh that is born, the body is formed as an infant and at birth is given life and the Spirit of God.

a. The Union of Spirit with the body produces the soul or life consciousness of man.

b. When the soul is awakened or form[ed] it becomes an everlasting substance with the Spirit and is non-separable from the Spirit at death.

c. We conclude then with the premise that Man’s Physical birth is but the clothing of the Spiritual man with flesh.

d. We are all one and the Father with Jesus Christ and are all of one Spirit even as all flesh is of the same substance. There is one spiritual substance and one fleshly substance. We are all equal partakers of both those substances. As we develop and mature our natures are determined by the environment with which we are associated and the relative consideration we give to the two composite men within us. That is to say: if we place more emphasis on the spiritual man then we become like Christ and live by God for the Spirit of God. If we live after the flesh or put emphasis on the physical desires of the body the spiritual man is dwarfed or stunted in his growth and he can not be partaken of our true inheritance which is from above.

Lesson 2, p. 1

Origin of Sin.

1A. God is life – The source of all things visible and invisible.

1. God is in all things.

2. God is everywhere.

3. God fills all things, every corner, nook, crevice and even every tiny crack is saturated with the presence of God.

4. Understanding of this truth will impart a proper picture of how to approach God and how to obtain answers to prayers.

5. All powers that be are ordained of God. This includes the evil powers as well as the good or Spiritual forces.

a. Evil is permitted by God to bring about the perfection of man. Hebrews 5:8 says Jesus learned obedience thru the thing he suffered and so do all persons. To be reconciled with God entails and [an] overcoming of the evil forces thru the faith of him who was subjucted [subjected] to the life and overcame.

6. Realizing the source of evil and the purpose of the presence of evil we are about ready to take up the question of the origin of sin.

B. God’s command: Dress the garden and keep it, have dominion over the balance of God’s creation. The world was made for men and given to him to look after.

1. The Lord said be fruitful and replenish the earth, evidently there had been some chaotic condition on the earth previously before the introduction of Adam on the scene.

2. Every herb and tree given for food.

3. A test tree placed in the garden.

a. Exact nature of tests of obedience or nature of the first sin is uncertain. We have only the account in Genesis to go by for illumination yet we can conclude that there was something more involved than the mere eating of a fruit from a tree that would place upon man the stigma of eternal separation from God.

b. in our conjecture however we need to analyze God and sin to get proper perspective of what actually took place in the fall of man from his first estate and relationship with God.

4. God is truth-God is Life-God is Light-God is Harmony.

a. There are myriads of other qualities we can ascribe to God but they are all comprehended in a simple illustration:

(1) God is a straight line, unbroken and unvarying dimensions.

(2) In the beginning we were all within the limits of that single line. We depart or get away from God when we vary or swerve from our true course the straight line of harmony with God.

(3) Example also drawn from airplanes travelling on instrument or beacons. As long as the plane remains on the signal course, it is in harmony with the beacon and will reach its prescribed destination. Should it vary to any degree, at the end of its journey it will be miles from its destination. The distance between its intended and the one it finally reaches depends on how true it stayed on the course or whether or not it flew in a straight line with the beacon or signal it was following.

(4) God is our beacon. If we stay in contact with him we will reach our destination, the entering into eternal life as heir of the promise. We are the sons of God and have an inheritance in Him. We inherit all things that He has. If we get off the beam, we lose out entirely. We have to get back in line if we hope to reach our goal.

5. God was to be the source of all that man needed.

6. Another source was made available to man.

a. The tree of knowledge of good and evil represented the other source of life and information and any other desires that it is possible for man to have apart from God.

b. The test was in the authority: Would man trusts God’s word or would he look for proof that what God said was wrong?

c. The sin was committed before the actual partaking of the fruit.

(1) Tree was in the center of the garden away from all the other trees he was permitted to enjoy.

7. Progression of sin.

a. Entering the area of possible disobedience.

(1) Sin begins when we go where we have no business being.

b. Discussing the possibility that God could have been wrong in asking us to stay away from it.

c. Listening to another voice than that of God.

d. Looking upon the evil thing. Lusting after it.

e. Believing the word of evil forces or contrary to God’s word.

f. Partaking of the evil fruit.

g. Sought company to share fate.

h. Knowledge of sin revealed by Spirit.

i. Attempt to cover or hide from God.

j. Ultimate discovery and penalty.

8. All sin has some steps of origin. James condenses the progression into one verse, or more correctly in two verses: James 1:14, 15: “But every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lust and enticed. Then when lust has conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin when it is finished bringeth forth death.”

9. All evil begins in the mind. If the mind is pure all else is pure.

10. To be born from above is to have the mind separated from all evil thoughts and imaginations. The mind affects the seat of the emotions and the desires of man, and must be regenerated in the process of the new birth.

a. The new birth in reality is a returning to the original state of man – that of purity and innocence where all thoughts emanate from God and man relies completely on God for guidance and authority.

11. All sin has the same dire effects: banishment from the presence of God, or in more simple terms, separation from God.

12. Man was originally in the image of God and still is in a major way yet sin has deprived man of his full rights as sons of the most High God. Note that Adam walked and talked with God, had super intelligence, was perfect in every way. Perceive how man has fallen to his present depraved condition thru the ignorance of the intervening years.

13. Jesus Christ was the personification of what man may again become if he returns to his former relationship with God that of the Spirit as was mentioned earlier.

14. All that Christ did on Earth is at our command and as He said even greater things can we do. By realizing then the power we have with God, that we came from God in the beginning, that we need not be limited in power because of the sins of our fathers, that God is no respecter of persons but gives to every man according to his faith, let us get into complete harmony with God and become saviours to the balance of mankind that have not this knowledge.

15. Important point to remember:

Any act or state out of harmony with God is sin and as such will result in separation from God.

Lesson 3, p. 1

Origin of redemption

A. Sin although beginning with man actually had its inception long before man was created. Lucifer was the father of all who afterward should rebel against the authority of God. See Isaiah 14:12.

B. Because of this earlier rebellion, provision was made for the time when man, who God was planning to create, should be also separated from God. God’s intention for man to be heir of all things would thus be nullified were it not for some provision to restore a man to this sonship after he had fallen, which God knew he would do.

C. Such provision was made we know according to the record of the Scriptures as following. I Peter 1:20 – Christ was foreordained to be the Lamb without spot or blemish that should be offered once and for all for the sins of the entire human race, in the counsel table of God before the earth was created. Rev. [Revelation] 13:8 – He was slain or counted as slain from the foundation of the world. II Timothy 1:10, God called us with a holy calling long before the earth began and accomplished it for us in the person of Christ who by his obedience abolished sin and death and brought forth immortality to light thru the gospel.

D. This provision was renewed and given to (illegible word) by God on the day of their disobedience in Genesis 3:15.

1. The promise was that the seed of woman would bruise the serpent’s head and that the heel of her son would be bruised by the serpent.

a. All of this was of course figurative, it represented an outline of God’s plan for the human race.

(1) Seed of the woman. Note not the seed of the man.

a. The woman would be the vessel to produce the God-given seed. No assistance needed from the man. (Picture of the (illegible word) of the Spirit to our physical bodies, new life within, to help fx [physical] man needed to bring about the conception of the Spiritual man the divine son of God that is within.)

(2) Shall bruise the serpent’s head.

a. The serpent signifies realistically the sting of death.

(1) Sting of serpent usually fatal, true also spiritually.

(2) Head represents authority. Christ conquers over sin, death, hell and the grave. Death no longer has any authority over those who are redeemed by Christ Jesus.

(3) Satan represented by the serpent had upset the position of man as Lord over the earth when man fell and held men in bondage of sin and death.

(4) Man therefore became a slave to sin and (illegible word).

(3) Thou shalt bruise his heel.

a. Heel represents that power to stamp out or eradicate all authority. Satan to a certain extent limited or bruised Jesus’ authority on earth. He turned the religious leaders of his day against him even to the delivering of him to the Roman authorities to be Crucified. His heel was literally bruised during the process of being nailed to the cross. He was truly bruised but not destroyed nor did the bruising of his heel prevent him from stamping out the serpent’s head or destroying his authority and dominion.

The full impact of redemption includes a greater experience, not of reconciliation.

A. When man by his own volition became a serpent of sin he also became a vagabond, alienated or exiled from God his father.

1. First of all he was driven from the Garden of Eden where he enjoyed that special privilege of walking and talking with God in the cool of the day. From that day on man drifted further and further from God. During the period between Malachi and the coming of Christ there was a period of several hundred years of darkness where God had no contact with man of any importance.

a. The reason for the separation between God and man was of course the sin in man. God is Holy and pure and can not look upon sin in any form. When there is sin in us God can not look at us. He has to keep us at a distance. More than this the righteousness of God is as a fire and will consume sin and the sinner, were the two to meet on the same plane. God’s love for man was so great, he desired to again have fellowship with the crown of his creation, he prepared the way to again have that fellowship restored. This was accomplished, or rather the plan had its beginning, thru the righteous life of Jesus whom God raised again from the dead. His new life became the basis for a new race for all who partake of His new life.

b. Redemption to be complete must consist of redeeming not only the soul or eternal part of man but also the body. God has legions of angels to worship him, were he to desire the spiritual worship of man only. But man is not complete without the body. However it was in the body that man fell from his relationship with God. Therefore the body must be redeemed from its sinful condition.

c. The Holy Spirit is the agent that works in man to bring about the reunion with God. We will not go into further details about redemption at this time as it is a subject requiring endless studies to reach a full understanding. We are covering only the highlights of redemption and reconciliation at this time as the beginnings mentioned in Genesis are woven around God’s plan of redemption for the human race and man’s reconciliation to God.

B. Beginning of the blood line or the first of the forefathers of Jesus.

1. Interesting to note that only those persons who had a part in the program of God are given very much place in the Bible.

2. Abel was the first chosen by God because of his disobedience to His commands. Cain the first of Adam’s sons became the father of all those who afterwards should die wickedly.

3. The slaying of Abel was a master attempt to defeat God’s plan of Reconciling man to himself. However God renewed his plan in Seth the third son of Adam and made him the first forefather of the Lord Jesus Christ.

C. Notice the limited space given to the descendants of Cain. Mentioning only some of their major inventions and civilization.

1. Beyond that short account no further mention is made of Cain again or his descendants. We can draw from this and later similar treatments of other insignificant persons that unless a person allies himself with the program of God he loses his identity.

D. (Handwritten) another significant fact in Genesis is that while one of a kind is mentioned, God deals with all alike the same character.

Personal soul willing

Lesson 2

Elements of success:

1. Tact – Isaiah 50:14

a. Definition: Ability to say and do the right thing at the right time

b. Skill in handling people.

c. Jesus used Tact. – called for coin when questioned concerning the paying of tribute. Matt. [Matthew] 22:16-22

d. Paul used tact. – splitting Pharisees and Sadducees over doctrine of resurrection – Acts 23:6-9

e. Salvation Army Lassie – offered “War Cry” magazine to young man. Young man’s sneering asked for 10 cents worth of prayer, Lassie knelt down at his feet and prayed earnestly for his salvation. Several days later conviction set in and the young man looked her up to get her to help him find the Lord. That was also tact.

f. Phillip the evangelist – Asked the Ethiopian: “Understandest thou what thou readest?” – Acts 8:30.

(1) Modern-day approach: “are you saved? If not you’re going to hell. Repent or be damned.”

(2) Phillip’s tact resulted in invitation to come and show him and ended in the Eunuch’s conversion.

g. Tact takes place of lack of other talents.

h. Lack of tact often fatal.

i. Tact at command of every Christian – Ask of God – James 1:5

j. Tact a form of Wisdom.

2. Contact – Matt. [Matthew] 5:13

a. Definition: Coming together of two bodies in space.

(1) In personal work: getting in touch with your man – Buttonholing or tackling your man.

b. Tact without contact useless.

c. Contact, tact put into practice.

d. Sampson [Samson] had strength to pull down temple walls but had to come into contact with pillars first.

e. Knowledge of methods for aid if you don’t put them into practice.

f. Points to remember about tact.

(1) Contact with God first

(2) Contact with man afterwards

(a) Jacob wrestled with God

(b) Had power over Esau.

3. Ability – Power to bring things to pass – to accomplish the objective

a. Abilities needed:

(1) To read and understand men, Jesus knew all men – John 2:24, 25

(a) Study their temperaments, habits, reasonings and arguments to know how to deal with them.

(2) Ability to handle Bible – know places to read, be able to locate rapidly.

(a) Jesus turned quickly to proper portion in Nazareth.

(b) Familiarity with Bible builds seeker’s confidence in you.

(c) Hesitance [Hesitancy] a barrier to effective soul winning.

(d) 3 reasons ability to handle Bible skillfully is needed:

i. To show from Bible they are sinners.

a. Only Divine words convict.

ii. To point convicted persons to Christ, Same book that convicts also reveals the Saviour.

iii. Establish them in the faith – Show passages that will help them to grow in Grace.

Personal evangelism

(3) Ability to bring about decisions

(a) Sometimes possible to get a person to admit he is a sinner and to desire to accept Christ but unable to get him to follow thru

(1) One thing to get fish to bite on bait but to land him is a different matter.

(b) Need ability to get men to accept Christ.

(1) Most important ability of all

(2) Comes from God. I Peter 4:11

4. Appreciation of opportunities – Ephesians 5:16

a. Definition – a favorable time

b. Buying up opportunities

(1) Like merchants buying up bargains

c. Every moment has its proper duty, don’t waste time in ineffective discussions nor miss golden opportunities, either is disastrous to the cause of Christ.

d. 3 Factors to remember about opportunities –

(1) Don’t force opportunities – But led of the Holy Spirit. If in Proper Communion with God He’ll present the opening. Let the Holy Spirit prompt you.

(2) Miss no opportunity. Always be on the lookout for souls as a Prospector is for gold.

(3) Make wise use of opportunities – Good planning of time.

(a) World in mad pursuit of pleasure.

(b) Time running out.

(c) Plan soul-winning time for best results – be in right place at right time.

5. Absolute conviction of the truth.

a. Sinful man is lost – Needs a savior – no wreck, no lifeboat.

b. Belief in Christ will bring salvation

c. Doubt or neglect is fatal.

6. A Faith that never Despairs

a. See germ of Saint in vilest of sinner.

b. Potential Gem in woman on the street.

c. See men not as they are but what they may become in Christ.

d. Know no man after the flesh.

e. Any man in Christ is a new Creature – II Cor. [Corinthians] 5:17

f. No person past the redemption point. Is any thing to [too] hard for the Lord – Genesis 18:14.

g. Give up on no man.

7. Infinite Patience

a. Endure contradictions of sinners, those in one day and out the next

b. The loaves and fishes variety, Serve the Lord for what they get.

c. Those that backslide easily.

d. Lift them up again and again. Deal with them patiently.

8. A deep sense of responsibility – 33rd chapter of Ezekiel

a. Responsibility – Not to bring every man to Christ but to bring Christ to every man. Present Gospel the best of ability.

(1) Christ wants every man, Let every man know it.

b. Extent of responsibility – Ezek. [Ezekiel] 33:8,9

c. Daniel Webster’s most solemn thought – My responsibility to God.

d. Can any Christian find a more solemn thought.

Lesson #3, p. 1

The personal worker himself – Qualifications

1. He must be a Spirit filled man – a thourough [thorough] Christian

A. First step in leading men to Christ is to know him yourself. Jesus said to Peter in Luke 22:32 – And when thou art converted strengthen thy brother.

B. First cast the beam out of thy own eye then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

C. Be filled with the Spirit to be able to get the leading of the Spirit as did Philip. Acts 8:29. The Spirit said to Philip – “Go join thyself to this chariot.” Philip was obedient as should we when the Spirit requests us to do His bidding.

D. The Spirit speaks to every Christian today –

1. Mother, Father speak to thy child,

2. Son, Daughter speak to the parents.

3. Speak to your friends – They should know the Lord.

4. Jesus should be the leading topic at every meeting with those you love most dearly.

5. While you are busy telling people how good you are, they are slipping away from your influence. Tell them of Jesus while they are still within hearing of your voice.

2. Soul-winner must be a man of prayer.

A. It was while Peter was praying that he saw the vision that led him to the house of Cornelius.

1. Pray that God will lead you to the right Person

a. We don’t have time to speak to every person about the Lord so we should get in the mind of the Lord as to who is in a position to receive the word.

2. Pray that God will give you the right words to speak. Also to give power to use the words you Speak.

3. Pray that God will continue the work already begun in the life. Paul gave the example in praying for his converts. Eph. [Ephesians] 1:16-20, Phil. [Philippians] 1: 4-5, Collosians [Colossians] 1:3-4.

3. He must have a desire to see souls saved.

A. This is secret of success in soul winning. Christ had a burning love for souls. Read Matt. [Matthew] 23:37 and Luke 19:41

B. Ever wept over a soul? Do you feel the weight of lost souls upon your own soul? Ask the Lord to help you feel the importance of rescuing the lost souls of men and the sorrow in His heart over the attitude of mankind towards him.

C. Paul had a passion for lost souls – Romans 9:2, 3. His desire to be lost himself if it would mean the Salvation of his loved ones.

D. Man can be successful in career without love for clients, a successful merchant without loving patrons, but no man can be a winner of souls without a love for souls and a deep longing to see them accept the Lord.

E. John Knox’ Plea – “Give me Scotland or I die.”

F. Christ was always moved with compassion for the multitudes.

G. Our continuous cry to God must be, Give us Souls, Souls, Souls. To accomplish this and we must spend time ourselves and be willing to be spent. Better wear out for him than to die of inactivity rotting on the vine.

4. He must have confidence in the power of, and the Word of God.

A. We do well to heed the Lord’s rebuke to Sarah in Gen. [Genesis] 18:14, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?”

B. Even if your prospect is the chiefest of Sinners you can still rely on I Timothy 1:15.

C. If a murderer, Is. [Isaiah] 1:18 will convince you and him.

D. If an outcast there is comfort in Luke 19:10

E. When tempted to be discouraged, turn to these scriptures: Matt. [Matthew] 19:25. Job 4:1, 2. Isaiah 55:10,11.

F. 1400 years before the birth of Christ, Baalam a prophet received and gave this profound statement: God is not a man that He should lie; neither the Son of Man that he should repent; Hath He said and shall he not do it? Or hath he spoken and shall He not make it good – Numbers 23:19.

G. Paul 1500 years later echoes the same testimony: “In hope of eternal life which God, that cannot lie promised, before the world began.”

H. Let us trust confidently in the word and promise of God.

I. Illustration of Christian worker and Skeptic.

1. After speaking to him about becoming a Christian, Skeptic said “I do not believe in God, the Bible, heaven or hell.[“]

2. Worker ignored him and quoted to him Luke 13:3 – “Except ye repent ye shall all likewise perish.”

3. Skeptic protested his disbelief again but the worker continued quoting the same verse over and over, adding no words of his own, and after doing so about twenty times he turned to the skeptic and said, “Now my friend, I do not remember half of what you have said to me, but you cannot forget the passage of Scripture I have quoted to you. I am going to pray to God that he will through the scripture and by his Holy Spirit cause you to realize its truth and accept the gospel.

4. The skeptic again said, “But I don’t believe it.”

5. Christian worker quoted Romans 3:3,4 “But what if some did not believe? Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God Forbid.” The Christian then left the skeptic in the hands of God.

6. The next night the skeptic sought him and confessed he had spent a miserable night, the verse of scripture had haunted his memory all night, he couldn’t get away from it. He then asked for more information on how to find the Lord as his saviour. What a pleasure it was to point out the following verses: John 1:29. Acts 15:32, and Jude 24.

7. Always remember, God will Honor his word.

Originally posted on February 17th, 2013.

Last modified on December 25th, 2014.
Skip to main content