By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D
Jesus took my Place on the Cross. He died for me. I was guilty as charged. I should have suffered, bled, and died, but Jesus God’s Son became my substitute! For six hours the weight of the entire world’s sins was laid upon Jesus of Nazareth. He paid for all the sins of the world, past, present, and future! Through His vicarious death and glorious resurrection, He purchased Eternal Life for us all!
When the ‘Hammer of God’s Judgment’ fell on Golgotha, JESUS took the blow so that we could go free! He is our Substitute. He had us in mind when He left Heaven to fulfill God ‘s Plan of Salvation for mankind! We were on His mind when He was defamed, ridiculed, rejected, and judged as an enemy of the Jewish nation and the Roman Empire!
When they scourged Him with the cruel cat-of-nine-tails whip that ripped open his back it was for the healing of all our infirmities, sicknesses and diseases!
In His weakened condition, He carried the cross made for Barabbas. He thought about the freedom He was bringing to Adam’s fallen race! As He hung naked on that rugged CROSS outside Jerusalem’s City walls, He prayed for those who blasphemed Him and those who drove the spikes into His hands and feet.
The King of Glory wore a crown of 2 ½ inch long Arabian thorns. Instead of driving Him insane, He purchased our peace! The thief hanging next to Him on the cross believed and made a confession of faith. God’s great mercy and love liberated forever a lost world! Never again will such a transaction occur, God dying for man! All glory and praise to the Lamb of God, forever and ever!
WE ARE BOUGHT WITH A PRICE!
St. Paul stated: “According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us Accepted in the Beloved.” (Eph. 1: 4-7)
“I am crucified with Christ; nevertheless, I live. Yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me?” (Gal. 2:20)
This is our testimony: My body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. He lives in me and I live in Him. I am hidden with Christ in God and am therefore secure: "What? Know ye not that that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
“For ye are BOUGHT with a price, therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s? (1 Cor. 6: 19,20); “For He hath said, I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” (Heb.13:5). In the original, Jesus used a double imperative which reads: “I will never, no never leave thee. I will never, no never forsake thee.”
Jesus said: “… And lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” (Matt. 28:20). The word alway is a term of distance, while the word always is a term of time. He promises to be with us all the way, right to the end of our journey!
HE IS OUR GREAT PHYSICIAN!
The Bible says : “Fear thou not; for I am with the: Be not dismayed, for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteous.” (Is. 41: 10)
“No weapon that is formed against me shall prosper and every tongue that rises against me in judgment, I shall condemn. This is the heritage of God’s children and it is all because of His righteousness! (Is. 54: 17)
He promised: “I am the Lord that healeth thee.” (Ex. 15: 26); “And ye shall serve the Lord your God, and He shall bless thy bread and thy water; and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee.” (Ex.23: 25)
“Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the most High thy habitation; There shall NO EVIL befall thee, neither shall any PLAGUE come nigh thy dwelling. For He shall give His angels charge over thee to keep thee in all thy ways.
“He shall call upon Me and I shall answer him: I will be with him in trouble. I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him My salvation.” (Ps. 91:9-16)
By God’s grace alone, I am bone of His bone and flesh of His flesh, therefore I am well, because there is no sickness or disease in His bones or His flesh. (Eph. 5: 30). There shall no EVIL befall me, neither shall any plague come nigh unto thy dwelling. (Ps. 91:10)
St. John was the only apostle not to be martyred and lived to be 94 years of age. He stated: “Ye are of God little children, and have overcome them (evil spirits), because Greater is He (Christ) that is in you than he (Satan) that is in the world.
“In this was manifested the LOVE of God toward us because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might LIVE through Him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation (satisfaction, expiation) for our sins.
“No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us and His love is perfected in us. Hereby know we that we dwell in Him, and He in us, because He hath given us of His Spirit.” (1 John 4:4-13).
WHY WE NEED THE HOLY SPIRIT!
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit in a believer’s life is proof that God lives within him! St. John declares God’s amazing love to us all. He states that God dwells in every believer. It is the Holy Spirit who draws and urges us to receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, and to worship His Father Who sent Him!
“And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in Him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us.
“God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world.” (1 John 4: 14-17)
We are indwelt by the Blessed Holy Spirit, who births in us the Lord Jesus Christ and destroys fear, sickness, and disease. He takes charge of our lives as we read His Word, pray, and worship Him!
“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us.” (1 John 4: 18,19)
The Holy Scriptures teach the prevenient grace of God, meaning that before we wanted Him, He wanted us. The Holy Spirit searches for souls whom He knows will respond to His embrace. He gets whom He needs, like Saul of Tarsus. Old-time Preachers called Him, the ‘Hound of Heaven’. He knew that we would respond so He kept knocking until we answered, “Yes.”
NOAH WALKED WITH GOD!
Adam’s sin of high treason destroyed the bond between the Creator and His creation! His treachery spawned rebellion, fear, and death. In His mercy God provided a way of escape through the sacrificial system, the death of a lamb to provide blood to cover their sins and skins to cover their bodies!
Adam’s transgression was so deadly and sin so contagious that within 1,600 years, the world had become a cesspool of unrighteousness. To preserve the pure bloodline of the coming Messiah, God ordered Noah to build an ark. He and his three sons built the ark while he preached and warned of the approaching flood!
The Holy Bible records: “God saw the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart.
“And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth…But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord…Noah was a just man and perfect (upright) in his generations, and Noah walked with God.
“The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth. And God said unto Noah, the end of all flesh is come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” (Gen. 6: 5-8. 11-13)
THE SEED OF THE WOMAN!
After Adam’s treacherous sin in the Garden of Eden, God delivered a prophecy to Satan. It was fulfilled when Jesus Christ - true God from eternity and true man by His virgin birth – gave His life on the CROSS, as God’s paschal Lamb for the sins of the world and arose victorious over death, Hades and Satan!
“And I will put enmity between thee (the serpent) and the woman, and between thy seed (Satan’s kingdom) and Her SEED (Christ). It (He) shall bruise (crush) thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel.” (Gen. 3: 15)
In His great mercy, God waited for sinners to REPENT and return to Him, but they rejected the pleadings of the Holy Spirit through Noah’s preaching.
The entire population had corrupted themselves and refused God’s grace, until there was only one righteous family left to carry the godly line of the Messiah. That family was that of Noah!
ABRAHAM HEARD GOD’S VOICE!
God calls those that will obey Him. He reached into the pagan world for a dedicated man who would to be the leader of ‘His Chosen People’. The Holy Bible records: “Now the Lord said unto Abram, Get thee out of the country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
“In the same day, the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the River of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates.” (Gen. 15: 1,17, 18). Notice: The land was given to the Jewish people through Abraham who became the Father of the Jews through his son Isaac!
Abraham had waited 25 years for a son and heir to carry forward the ‘Seed of the woman’. It seemed hopeless. Both he and Sarah were old and she was barren: “And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac; and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting Covenant and with his seed after him.” (Gen.17: 19,21)
God chose Abraham and Sarah through which the ‘seed of the woman’ was preserved and carried to David and finally to Mary, the mother of Jesus!
Our God is a Miracle God, and nothing is too hard for Him. His message to Sarah was: “Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life.” (Gen. 18:14). He kept His word and when Sarah was 90 and Abraham 100 years of age, Isaac was born! If Sarah had not conceived and birthed sons, the bloodline of the Messiah would have been finished.
God’s prophecy to Satan about the Messiah was fulfilled perfectly and therefore Satan is an “eternally doomed despot”. Messiah JESUS crushed Satan’s HEAD on the CROSS!
St. Paul stated: “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself (Jesus) took part of the same; that through Death He might Destroy him who has the power of death, that is the Devil; And Deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” (Heb. 2:14,15)
CHRIST’S VICTORY, SATAN’S
DEFEAT AND OUR LIBERTY!
“And you, being dead in your sins and the uncirumcision of your flesh hath He quickened (made alive) together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses: Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His Cross;
“And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” (Col. 2: 13-15)
It has been said, “The Mills of God grind slowly.” Until the time of Abraham, God’s people were saved through keeping the Law, following many strict dietary and ritualistic ceremonies, which pointed to Christ. There was however, the guilt, shame and unrest, because the works of the flesh cannot please God or bring closure and cleansing!
St. Paul explains: “Therefore by the deeds of the laws shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. For all have sinned and come short of the glory; being justified freely by His grace through the Redemption that is in Christ Jesus: whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
“To declare, I say, at this time His righteousness that He might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.” (Rom. 3:20-26)
BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD!
There were 1767 years or eighteen generations between Abraham and Christ. There had not been any overt signs except with words of the Prophets like Isaiah foretelling the coming of Christ. Then, the excitement of the birth of John the Baptist and the Virgin birth of Jesus were ripples showing that the time was drawing near.
Then came the announcement from the Prophet John the Baptist: “Behold, The Lamb of God which taketh away then sins of the world…” (John 1: 29).
Here is a marvelous truth: John the Baptist’s reason for being born was to introduce Jesus Christ to the Jewish nation and to the world:
“There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through Him might believe. He was not that light but was sent to bear witness of that Light.” (John 1: 6-8)
“He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the Way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias… 1 baptize with water: but there standeth One among you, whom ye know not; He it is who coming after me is before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose.” (John 1: 23-27)
What does that mean to us? We who have been saved through His vicarious death and shed blood for us all, have a duty to make our precious Saviour known to as many as possible. His Gospel must be front and centre in our lives so that others may also hear and live!
IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD!
The Bible says: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. He was in the world, and the world was made by Him. He came unto His own and His own received Him not.
“And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1: 1-3, 10, 11, 14)
St. Paul wrote: “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
“Wherefore as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. Therefore, as by the offence of One Judgment came upon all men to Condemnation; even so by the Righteousness of One the free gift came upon all men unto Justification of life.
“For as by One man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of ONE many shall be made righteous: That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto Eternal Life.” (Rom. 5: 10-21)
ADAM’S SINS IMPUTED TO US!
The Bible says: “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not. Surely He hath borne our sicknesses (heb. kholee) and carried our pains (heb. makob); yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted.
“But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” (Is. 53: 3-6)
“When the even shall come, they brought unto Him many that were possessed with devils: and He cast out the spirits with His Word, and healed all that were sick: That it might be fulfilled which was spoke by Elaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities and bare our sicknesses.” (Matt. 8: 16, 17)
“Who His own Self bare our Sins in His body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: By Whose stripes ye were healed.” (1 Peter 2:24)
BY HIMSELF: PURGED OUR SINS!
“God who at sundry times and in diverse manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, whom He Hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also He made the worlds;
“Who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His Person, and upholding all things by the Word of His Power, when He had By Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on High: Being made so much better than the angels, as He hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.” (Heb. 1:1-4)
Our Lord did not help from an angel or a prophet to purge our sins. He did it all by Himself. He doesn’t need any help from the Virgin Mary, the pope of Rome or a high mass to purge our sins. He did it all by Himself! The precious blood that flowed from His hands, feet, side, head and back was sufficient!
The Gospel message of God’s divine love in forgiveness of sins, healing of sickness, disease and pain, as well as protection, prosperity and Life Eternal has come to us through the shed blood of Jesu Christ alone!
Jesus Christ said: “I Am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet.
“And He laid His right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am He that liveth and was dead; and behold I am alive for evermore. Amen; and have the keys of Hell and of death.” (Rev. 1: 8, 17, 18)
The last prophetic words in the Holy Bible were spoken by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. That is important because God the Father appointed Him heir of all things, by whom also He made the worlds. He was the One who began the work of creation and finished it!
By Himself, Jesus Christ purged our sins when He willingly laid down His life to redeem us through His vicarious death and glorious resurrection from the dead!
BY HIS OWN BLOOD!
“But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building:
Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own Blood, He entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal Redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
“How much more shall the Blood of Christ who through the Eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the Living God?” (Heb. 9: 11-14)
“And almost all things are by the law purges with blood: and without shedding of blood in no remission. It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.
“For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands which are the figures of the true; but into HEAVEN itself, now to appear in the Presence of God for us; nor yet that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with the Blood of others;
“For then must He often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath He appeared to put away sin by the SACRIFICE of Himself…So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many…” (Heb. 9: 24-28)
WORTHY IS THE LAMB!
“And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a LAMB as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And He came and took the book out of the hand of Him that sat upon the Throne.
“And when He had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps and golden viols full of incense, which ae the prayers of saints. And they sung a new song, saying,
“Thou art WORTHY to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: For Thou wast SLAIN, and hast Redeemed us to God by Thy BLOOD out of every kindred and tongue and people, and nation. And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
“And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands; Saying with a loud voice, WORTHY IS THE LAMB that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.
“And every creature which is in Heaven, and on the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped Him that liveth forever and ever.” (Rev.5: 6-14)
AMAZING MIRACLE IN EDMONTON, 1972
On October 26, 1969 we opened the doors of the Edmonton Revival Centre and for the next many years tremendous revival continued there and later in the new Faith Cathedral. The leaders of Edmonton’s Pentecostal Ministerial reported to Rev. Keith Driver that they believed that 6,000 souls had been saved in our church in first four years of our ministry and new converts were joining many of their assemblies.
Great miracles were happening regularly as the revival services grew in intensity. In 1972, a Jewish man named Moshe Weinberger arrived from Winnipeg. We gave him lodging and one night he opened his heart to me.
He had been captured by the Nazis and forced to load box cars with Jewish men, women, and children for extermination in Buchenwald. As American Troops were pushing forward, the Nazi guards fled. He was locked in a box car with nearly a hundred others, when the Americans arrived. Many were near death and others had died for lack of water and ventilation. The medics put him on intervenes and saved his life. He showed me the infamous number that Nazis had burned into his upper arm.
He immigrated to Canada and had attended a revival meeting at the ‘Indian Church’ in Winnipeg operated by a Native Lady. After being born again he helped her in the Mission and eventually they were married. Then he divulged why had come to Edmonton. The Nazis had taken away his manhood and he had married a woman 15 years his senior.
He had heard about Christ doing miracles and He asked if it could be possible to receive a miracle from Jesus, to restore his manhood.
GOD GRANTED A SPECIAL MIRACLE!
I asked him to prepare for a miracle and when the right moment arrived, I would pray for him. One evening, I prayed for Mrs. Johnson, a native lady from Prince Albert, SK who had undergone surgery to remove her left lung and ribs. As I prayed, you could observe her left shoulder lifting as God gave her a new lung. Immediately, she could breathe normally, and a volume of praise went up to Jesus the Healer!
I asked Muriel Heppner who was on the organ, to take Mrs. Johnson into a private area beside the platform and investigate if she now had two lungs and ribs. In a few minutes they returned rejoicing and shouting that it was so.
Immediately, I laid my hands on Moshe and prayed: “Heavenly Father, I ask for the demonstration of Thy mighty power in making this man whole from the crown of his head to the soles of his feet. Give him what he needs dear Lord, for Thy honour and glory. This I ask in the precious Name of Jesus Christ. Amen.”
We didn’t use catchers in those days, and suddenly he slipped out of my hands and fell back full length on the floor. The meeting continued and great and wonderful things happened for God’s glory. At nine o’clock the next morning I was coming to my office and Moshe was standing outside, holding two suitcases. It was snowing a little and he had his collar turned up.
I asked, “Are you going home?” He replied, “Yes, I’m going home.” I asked, “Did you get your miracle?” He said, “I’m going home.” I said, “Moshe, don’t play games with me. Did you get a miracle last night?”
He smiled largely and said, “Yes, I got my miracle and that is why I am going home.” We stayed in touch, and he and his wife sent us $10 a month to help with our radio program.
Two years later, I was conducting a tent crusade in Winnipeg. One evening as I was walking from my trailer to the tent, I met them near the entrance. I said, “Good evening, Brother and Sister Weinberger.” Moshe smilingly said, “Good evening, Brother Solbrekken.”
His wife said, “Brother Max, I must talk to you alone.” She said, “Pray for Moshe.” I said, “I prayed for him and he said that he got a miracle!” She answered, “That is the problem. He’s got too much!” I said, “Sister Weinburger, that is not my department. You will have to ask God about that.” And I turned and walked into the tent for the evening service.”
TO GOD BE THE GLORY!
After God had supernaturally protected Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego from the burning fiery furnace, King Nebuchadnezzar exclaimed: “How great are His signs! And how mighty are His wonders! His Kingdom is an everlasting Kingdom and His dominion is from generation to generation.” (Dan. 4:3)
The Bible says: “And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written everyone, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.” (John 21: 25).
This, undoubtedly, refers to the libraries of the then known world. Interestingly, the two largest categories in the US Library of Congress are the Civil War and Jesus of Nazareth!
Jesus said: “Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you Free.” (John 8: 32). During Governor Pontius Pilate interview with Jesus of Nazareth, our Saviour stated: “…To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the Truth heareth My voice. Pilate sayeth unto Him, what is Truth?” (John 18:37,38)