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Sermon Scriptures

Sunday, February 26, The Prayer of Faith Continued:  Prayer is the Conduit, Faith is the Currency.

Luke 19:13  –  Occupy Until I Return.

James 5:13-15  –  Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.

Hebrews 11:1  –  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Romans 10:17  Faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ

John 15:7  –   If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.

James 4:2-3  –  You do not have because you do not ask God.  When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask amiss. Amiss:  Not quite right, inappropriate, out of place, out of order.

2 Kings 13:14-19  –  Elisha had become sick with the illness of which he would die. Then Joash the king of Israel came down to him, and wept over his face, and said, “O my father, my father, the chariots of Israel and their horsemen!” And Elisha said to him, “Take a bow and some arrows.” So he took himself a bow and some arrows.  Then he said to the king of Israel, “Put your hand on the bow.” So he put his hand on it, and Elisha put his hands on the king’s hands. And he said, “Open the east window”; and he opened it. Then Elisha said, “Shoot”; and he shot. And he said, “The arrow of the Lord’s deliverance and the arrow of deliverance from Syria; for you must strike the Syrians at Aphek till you have destroyed them.” Then he said, “Take the arrows”; so he took them. And he said to the king of Israel, “Strike the ground”; so he struck three times, and stopped. And the man of God was angry with him, and said, “You should have struck five or six times; then you would have struck Syria till you had destroyed it! But now you will strike Syria only three times.”

James 5:16b  –  The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

Acts 12:5-17  –  Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church. And when Herod was about to bring him out, that night Peter was sleeping, bound with two chains between two soldiers; and the guards before the door were [c]keeping the prison. Now behold, an angel of the Lord stood by him, and a light shone in the prison; and he struck Peter on the side and raised him up, saying, “Arise quickly!” And his chains fell off his hands. Then the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and tie on your sandals”; and so he did. And he said to him, “Put on your garment and follow me.” So he went out and followed him, and did not know that what was done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision.  When they were past the first and the second guard posts, they came to the iron gate that leads to the city, which opened to them of its own accord; and they went out and went down one street, and immediately the angel departed from him. And when Peter had come to himself, he said, “Now I know for certain that the Lord has sent His angel, and has delivered me from the hand of Herod and from all the expectation of the Jewish people.”  So, when he had considered this, he came to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose surname was Mark, where many were gathered together praying. And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a girl named Rhoda came to answer. When she recognized Peter’s voice, because of her gladness she did not open the gate, but ran in and announced that Peter stood before the gate.  But they said to her, “You are beside yourself!” Yet she kept insisting that it was so. So they said, “It is his angel.”  Now Peter continued knocking; and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished.


Luke 19:13  –  Occupy Until I Return.   Barter, an exchange.  Financial Transactions.  If prayer is the conduit, what is the currency between the Kingdom of God and the earth?  Faith that expects to the point it looks and feels like a demand.”  The prayer of faith has no plan B.

Isaiah 65:24  –  I will answer them before they even call to me.  While they are still talking about their needs, I will answer their prayers!

Jeremiah 33:3  –  Call to me and I will answer you!

John 10:27-28  –  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

James 5:13-15  –  Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.  And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 

Matthew 6:9-11  –  Our Father in heaven,  Praise and honor be Your name. Your kingdom come.
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread.  (A demand or high expectation on promised provision).

Psalm 138:2b  –  For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.  (You have magnified your promise above your name).

Isaiah 55:8-9  –  For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.  (Earth’s foolishness is Heaven’s Wisdom!)

Matthew 9:20-22  –  And suddenly, a woman who had a flow of blood for 12 years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment. For she said to herself, “If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.”  But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her, He said, “Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has healed you.” And the woman was made well from that very hour.

Malachi 4:2  –  The Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings (See below).  See

  • καὶ ἀνατελεῖ ὑμῖν τοῖς φοβουμένοις τὸ ὄνομά μου ἥλιος δικαιοσύνης καὶ ἴασις ἐν ταῖς πτέρυξιν αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἐξελεύσεσθε καὶ σκιρτήσετε ὡς μοσχάρια ἐκ δεσμῶν ἀνειμένα.

Isaiah 55:11So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.  How and by whom is the word Returned to the Lord?  

James 1:6-8  –  Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.

Romans 4:18-22  –  Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations. For God had said to him, “That’s how many descendants you will have!”  And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb. Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God.  He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.   And because of Abraham’s faith, God counted him as righteous. 

The Son of Righteousness – Malachi 4:1-2

In the final writings of the period of the prophets, Malachi foretold of the “sun of righteousness” who would arise with “healing in His wings.”  This prophecy immediately became associated with the coming of the Messiah.  As we saw earlier, the Hebrew word for corner is “kanaph”.  Hebrew is considered a “poor language” – meaning that it has many fewer words than languages like Greek, Latin, or English.  That means that one word must be used to describe several different things depending upon the context of how it was being usedTherefore, in addition to “kanaph” meaning corner ) of clothing or specifically, priestly garments, it also means “wings.  The Hebrew sages taught that this meant that the coming Messiah would have special healing powers in the tzitzit that were attached to the corner of his robe.  Now it makes sense when the woman with the issue of constant flowing blood said TO HERSELF, “For she said to herself, “If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.” 

NOTE:  Many Pharisees who wanted to be considered candidates for the role of Messiah, would attach especially long tzitzit to their robes, suggesting that they had these special healing attributes.  (Matthew 23:5-7)  



Sunday, Febraury 5:  Demolishing Strongholds

2 Corinthians 10:3-6  –  For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. 

Joshua 6:1  –  Now Jericho was shut up inside and outside because of the people of Israel. None went out, and none came in.

John 8:44  –  He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.

1 Peter 2:7-8  –  Therefore, to you who believeHe is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone,” and A stone of stumbling And a rock of offense.”

Philippians 2:10-12  –  At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,  and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Psalm 138:2  – I will worship you in Your holy temple and praise Your name. For Your lovingkindness and Your truth;  For You have magnified Your word above Your name.

John 8:31-36  –   Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can You say, ‘You will be made free’?”  Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever.  Therefore, if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.


Hebrews 10:13b  –  His enemies are made His footstool.

Romans 8:7 – The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor can be.

2 Corinthians 10:4-5  –  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholdsdown arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.

Proverbs 23:7 – For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.

Jude 1:6  – The angels who did not keep their proper (established) boundaries, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day.

Psalm 27:1  –  The Lord is my light and my salvation;  Whom shall I fear?  The Lord is my Strength, Whom shall I fear.

Psalm 119:105Thy word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.

1 John 1:7  –  If we alk in the light, as He is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. 

1 Peter 2:7-8  –  Therefore, to you who believeHe is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone,” and A stone of stumbling And a rock of offense.”

Luke 19:13  “Occupy till I come.”


Sunday, January 8, 2023, Pastor Ed, “Golden Ticket”

Mark 7:9,13  –  For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men;  (13) making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.

“Confess”  – Matthew 3:6, 1 John 4 “test the spirits, confession Christ has come in the flesh;  1 John 1:9, “Confess our Faults;” James 5:16

2 Peter 1:8-11  –  So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things, and you will never fall away.

ESV: be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election

Berean Standard: strive to make your calling and election sure

Aramaic Bible in Plain English: take pains concerning this, that by your good deeds you shall make your calling and your election sure

Good News Translation: try even harder to make God’s call and his choice of you a permanent experience.

Matthew 7:21-22  –  Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter.  On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name, cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you who break God’s laws.’

The Message Paraphrase:  Matthew 7:21-22  –  Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What was required was serious obediencedoing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands (of people) strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached your Message, we bashed the demons, our super-spiritual projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat by a thousand miles. All you did was use me and my name to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit.’

History of the Septuagint

1 Chronicles 16:34  –  Oh give thanks (Yadah) to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever! 

Yadah  –  It is used almost exclusively in the Bible to mean praise and thanksgiving. Yadah occurs 114 times in the Old Testament and nearly 100 of those occurrences are translated to mean humble, submissive praise or thanksgiving.

So why is a word that literally means “to extend the hand” translated to mean praise and thanksgiving?  This is because the Hebrew language is much more concrete in its use of words.  It is likely that the practice of extending the hands in praise and worship was so much a part of Hebrew culture that they began to use the word to mean “praise” more often than they used it to mean “extend the hand”.

Luke 23:39-43  –  Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, “If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.”  But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”

Luke 5: 1-10 –  One day as Jesus was preaching on the shore of the Sea of Galilee,  great crowds pressed in on him to listen to the word of God. He noticed two empty boats at the water’s edge, for the fishermen had left them and were washing their nets. Stepping into one of the boats, Jesus asked Simon,  its owner, to push it out into the water. So he sat in the boat and taught the crowds from there.  When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.”  “Master,” Simon replied, “we worked hard all last night and didn’t catch a thing. But if you say so, I’ll let the nets down again.” And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear!  A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat, and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking.  When Simon Peter realized what had happened, he fell to his knees before Jesus and said, “Oh, Lord, please leave me—I’m such a sinful man.” For he was awestruck by the number of fish they had caught, as were the others with him. His partners, James and John, the sons of Zebedee, were also amazed.  Jesus replied to Simon, “Don’t be afraid! From now on you’ll be fishing for people!”  And as soon as they landed, they left everything and followed Jesus.

John 15:1-7  –  I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.  You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.  “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.  By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.  “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.  If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

Matthew 16:13-17  –  When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”  So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”   Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.

Philippians 2:1-12 –  Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.


2 Corinthians 10:4-5  –  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds (of human misunderstanding), casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

2 Corinthians 11:14-15  –  Satan transforms himself into an angel of lightTherefore it is no great thing if his ministers (false apostles, demonic) also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.

2 Timothy 2:15  –  Diligently study to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Appointed Times, Holy Convocations (Leviticus 23)   The Passover, The Firstfruits, The Trumpets, Day of Atonement, Tabernacles, Weeks…

Luke 1 – 5-25  –  There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both well advanced in years.

Note:  Herod was born in southern Palestine. His father, Antipater, was an Edomite (Arabian) who converted to Judaism in the 2nd century BCE). Antipater was a man of great influence and wealth who increased both by marrying the daughter of a noble from Petra (in southwestern Jordan), at that time the capital of the rising Arab Nabataean kingdom. Thus, Herod was of Arab origin, although he was a practicing Jew.  A tyrant, unpopular with the Jews.  He was lifelong friends with Mark Antony and Julius Caesar. His son launched a plan to have him executed so he could rise to power.  Read More:

So it was, that while he was serving as priest before God in the order of his division, according to the custom of the priesthood, his lot fell to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord. 

1 Chronicles 24:10  –  The seventh to Hakkoz, the eighth (very late July, most of August) to AbijahRead entire chapter, click here.

And the whole multitude of the people was praying outside at the hour of incense. Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him.  But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John (the Baptist). And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

And Zacharias said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years.”  And the angel answered and said to him, “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and was sent to speak to you and bring you these glad tidings. But behold, you will be mute and not able to speak until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words which will be fulfilled in their own time.”  And the people waited for Zacharias, and marveled that he lingered so long in the temple. But when he came out, he could not speak to them; and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple, for he beckoned to them and remained speechless.

 So it was, as soon as the days of his service were completed (late August), that he departed to his own house. Now after those days his wife Elizabeth conceived (very late August); and she hid herself 5 months, saying, “Thus the Lord has dealt with me, in the days when He looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”

(26) Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a young man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”  But when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was. Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JesusHe will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David.  And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”  Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?”  And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God. Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the 6th month for her who was called barrenFor with God nothing will be impossible.” Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

John the Baptist BirthApril, the Hebrew month of Nisan.  (September first month of of Pregnancy)

Matthew 17, who appeared to Christ, in person?  Moses and Elijah

4 Cups of Wine at the Passover Meal

Elijah’s 5th Cup of Wine  –

Passover Meal Protocols  –

Passover (Leviticus 23)  –

Gregorian Calendar (1582 AD)  –

Julian Calendar (47 BC)

Roman Republicans Calendar (738 BC)

Hebrew Calendar –,was%20more%20calculated%20by%20mathematics.

Roman Republican Calendar – 738 BC – 47 BC. –  The months bore the names Martius, Aprilis, Maius, Juniius, Quintilis, Sextilis, September, October, November, and December—the last six names correspond to the Latin words for the numbers 5 through 10. The Roman ruler Numa Pompilius is credited with adding January at the beginning and February at the end of the calendar to create the 12-month year. In 452 BC, February was moved between January and March.  The Roman Calendar had only 10 months and had an 8 day week.  Missing were well over 47 days from the known 365 days currently in our Gregorian Calendar. 

Christ’s Birth – The 6th month of Elizabeth’s Pregnancy (February,  first month of of Mary Holy Pregnancy).  Simple math gives us the documented date of the birth of the Christ child on or about September 15th, a most likely date for the shepherds to be tending to their flocks by night, and for a taxation since it would have been the harvest time, a time of great personal wealth.


Sukkot (Tabernacles  (8 Days)

Festival of The Trumpets (10 Days):

Rosh Hashanah (New Year):

Luke 2  –  And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)  And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.  And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)  To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child (late in her pregnancy).  And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.  And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.  And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.  And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and sayingGlory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.  And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.  And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.  And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.  But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.  And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.  And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

The Council of Carthage, assembled on 28 August 397. It reaffirmed the canons of Hippo from 393, and issued its own. One of these gives a canon of the Bible.  The church in Rome began formally celebrating Christmas on December 25 in 336, during the reign of the emperor Constantine. As Constantine had made Christianity the effective religion of the empire, some have speculated that choosing this date had the political motive of weakening the established pagan celebrations.

Why?  Emperor Constantine hated Saturnalia  –  Saturnalia, the most popular holiday on the ancient Roman calendar, derived from older farming-related rituals of midwinter and the winter solstice, especially the practice of offering gifts or sacrifices to the gods during the winter sowing season.  The pagan celebration of Saturn, the Roman god of agriculture and time, began as a single day, but by the late Republic (133-31 B.C.) it had expanded to a weeklong festival beginning December 17. (On the Julian calendar, which the Romans used at the time, the winter solstice fell on December 25.)   During Saturnalia, work and business came to a halt. Schools and courts of law closed, and the normal social patterns were suspended.  People decorated their homes with wreaths and other greenery, and shed their traditional togas in favor of colorful clothes known as synthesis. Even enslaved people did not have to work during Saturnalia, but were allowed to participate in the festivities; in some cases, they sat at the head of the table while their masters served them.,%2C%20feasting%20and%20gift%2Dgiving.

2 Corinthians 4:8  –   We do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 

1 Kings 18:41  –  Then Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink; for I hear there is the sound of abundance of rain.

Joshua 5: 15-16;  20  –  On the seventh day, they got up at daybreak and marched around the city seven times in the same manner, except that on that day they circled the city seven times.  The seventh time around, when the priests sounded the trumpet blast, Joshua commanded the army, “Shout!  For the Lord has given you the city!   (20)  When the trumpets sounded, the army shouted, and at the sound of the trumpet, when the men gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed; so everyone charged straight in, and they took the city.

1 Thessalonians 4:17  –  For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.

Acts 2: 1-2  –  When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 

Ephesians 6:12   –  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 

Ephesians 2:2  –  In which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,

2 Corinthians 12:2-4  –  I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a man was caught up to the third heaven.   Read this article:

Daniel 10:12-14  –  Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one (21) days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia. Now I have come to make you understand what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision refers to many days yet to come. 

God immediately hears our prayers and dispatches the answer.

Spiritual beings in high places will attempt to block those prayers.

It is possible for us to prevail in prayer if we will not give up but fast and pray until the answer came.

Genesis 1:6-8  –  Then God said, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.” Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was soGod called the firmament (second) Heaven.  So the evening and the morning were the second day.

Additional Biblical Support Revealing Three Heavens

Deut 10:14  Behold, the heaven [2nd heaven] and the heaven of heavens [3rd heaven] is the LORD’S thy God, the earth also, with all that therein is [included the 1st heaven].

1 Ki 8:27  But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven [2nd heaven] and heaven of heavens [3rd heaven] cannot contain thee… [also 2 Chr 2:62 Chr 6:18]

Neh 9:6  Thou, even thou, art LORD alone; thou hast made heaven [2nd heaven], the heaven of heavens [3rd Heaven], with all their host, the earth, and all things that are therein [including the 1st heaven], the seas, and all that is therein…

Psa 113:4  The LORD is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens [His glory is above ALL heavens].  

Jesus passed through all three heavens when He ascended:

Heb 4:14  Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens (plural), Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.

Eph 4:10  He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.