O generation of vipers, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

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O generation of vipers, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
 
Continuing: today’s title is from Luke 3:7 and speaks to the same point as did the title of the previous post, which was also written by Luke and appears in Acts 2:40. In Luke 3 it is describing John (as the Holy Spirit) preaching purification to prepare the way of the coming LORD. In Acts, it is Peter, (Christ risen in him through a Holy Spirit produced understanding mind,) preaching the coming of the Holy Spirit to all who repent (are purified) and receive Him as the LORD rising in them.
 
Luke 3
…the word of God came unto John the son of Zechariah in the wilderness.
3 And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins;
4 As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare you the way of the LORD, make his paths straight.
5 Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth;
6 And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.
7 Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
9 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which brings not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
10 And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then?
11 He answered and said unto them, He that has two coats, let him impart to him that has none [he doesn’t say – go force others to do this – by violence of church or government]; and he that has meat, let him do likewise.
12 Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do?
13 And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you.
14 And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages.
15 And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not;
16 John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I comes, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire:
17 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.
 
Acts 2
1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
5 And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.
6 Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.
7 And they were all amazed and marveled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans?
8 And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?
9 Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia,
10 Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes,
11 Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.
12 And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?
13 Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.
14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, You men of Judaea, and all you that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:
15 For these are not drunken, as you suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.
16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;
17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:
18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:
19 And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:
20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the LORD come:
21 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be saved.
22 You men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as you yourselves also know:
23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, you have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
24 Whom God has raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.
25 For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the LORD always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved:
26 Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope:
27 Because you will not leave my soul in Hades [among the dead], neither will you suffer your Holy One to see corruption.
28 You have made known to me the ways of life; you shall make me full of joy with your countenance [presence].
29 Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulcher is with us unto this day.
30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;
31 He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in Hades [among the dead], neither his flesh did see corruption.
32 This Jesus has God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.
33 Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he has shed forth this, which you now see and hear.
34 For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he said himself, The LORD said unto my LORD, Sit you on my right hand,
35 Until I make your foes your footstool.
36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God has made the same Jesus, whom you have crucified, both LORD and Christ.
37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.
40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
 
Many use these last verses to falsely say Christianity requires communism. The first difference is these people are not forced by government or other people to do anything. This is a choice to do or not do, and the proceeds of the choice to sell everything remain in the control of the seller, to distribute as they see people have an authentic need – not redistributed by the government after forced confiscation using the tax code, to buy votes and power. In our time, it deals with all men’s spiritual wealth, and once saved abandoning all the old ideas, and distributing to others whatever they need to survive, financial or spiritual – true religion. The word of God plainly says that we must all still work, and if any man refuses to work he should not be allowed to become a non-productive parasite on those who do work. (See 2 Thessalonians 3:10 thru 13)
 
The above speaks of the same distribution and receiving, the brotherly love discussed several posts ago. We saw it as “entertain strangers” in Hebrews 13:2, and as “hospitality” in Romans 12:13, both of these referring us to the “open door” of Revelation 3:8. We saw these in the context of the LORD’s words in John 10, saying He is the door through which every man must enter – the kingdom of God.
 
Hebrews 13
1 Let brotherly love [philadelphia] continue.
2 Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained [philoxenos] angels unawares.
3 Remember them that are in bonds, as bound [joining] with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being yourselves also in the body.
4 Marriage [joining in a common bond] is honorable in all, and the bed undefiled [without corrupted idea]: but whoremongers [those who have sold themselves for mamonas – mammon: thing in which the world trust] and adulterers [those unfaithful to God] God will judge.
5 Let your conversation be without covetousness [Selah – think about it in the context of this conversation]; and be content with such things as you have: for he has said, I will never leave you, nor forsake you.
6 So that we may boldly say, The LORD is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.
7 Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.
8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.
9 Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats [not with things], which have not profited them that have been occupied therein.
 
Romans 12 [AGAIN, read in the context of our conversation.]
1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God has dealt to every man the measure of faith.
4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:
5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.
6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;
7 Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teaches, on teaching;
8 Or he that exhorts, on exhortation: he that gives, let him do it with simplicity; he that rules, with diligence; he that shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
9 Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.
10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love [philadelphia]; in honor preferring one another;
11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the LORD;
12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;
13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality [philoxenos].
14 Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.
15 Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.
16 Be of the same mind one toward another [having all your ideas in common – with Christ’s – and for the common good – the general welfare, the civilization of the society]. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.
17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.
18 If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men.
19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, says the LORD.
20 Therefore if your enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing you shall heap coals of fire on his head.
21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
 
Revelation 3 [in context]
7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things says he that is holy, he that is true, he that has the key of David, he that opens, and no man shuts; and shuts, and no man opens;
8 I know your works: behold, I have set before you an open door, and no man can shut it: for you have a little strength, and have kept my word, and have not denied my name.
9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews [see Luke 3:8 above], and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you.
10 Because you have kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation [from not understanding the LORD’s presence], which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which you have, that no man take your crown.
12 Him that overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
13 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.
14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things says the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot: I would you were cold or hot.
16 So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.
17 Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and know not that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
18 I counsel you to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness do not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye-salve, that you may see.
19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten [correct]: be zealous therefore, and repent.
20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
21 To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
22 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.
 
John 10
1 Truly, truly, I say unto you, He that enters not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
2 But he that enters in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.
3 To him the porter opens; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out [of corruption – the lies they are caught up in.]
4 And when he puts forth his own sheep, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
5 And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.
6 This parable spoke Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spoke unto them.
7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Truly, truly, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
8 All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.
9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
10 The thief comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep.
12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep, and flee: and the wolf catches [harpazo – raptures them in his idols – lies] them, and scatter the sheep.
13 The hireling flees, because he is an hireling, and cares not for the sheep.
14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
15 As the Father knows me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.
17 Therefore does my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.
18 No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.
 
Now for a clarification of terms used above: the word “distributing” above in Romans 12:13 is the eight times used Greek word koinoneo, meaning to share with others. It is the same word rendered “communicate” in Galatians 6:6.
 
Galatians 6
1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, you which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering yourself, lest you also be tempted.
2 Bear you one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.
3 For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.
4 But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.
5 For every man shall bear his own burden.
6 Let him that is taught in the word communicate [koinoneo] unto him that teaches in all good things.
7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap.
8 For he that sows to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that sows to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.
 
In the context of all above the word koinoneo is used in Hebrews 2:14 to tell of the common union we have with God, declaring His name unto the brethren. It says Christ took not the form of an angel, meaning not merely a message sent, but as did his brothers, he became a “partaker” in the flesh with us, and for us and in us destroyed death forever.
 
Hebrews 2
1 Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip [away].
2 For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward;
3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the LORD, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;
4 God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?
5 For unto the angels has he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak.
6 But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that you are mindful of him? or the son of man that you visit him?
7 You made him a little lower than the angels; you crowned him with glory and honor, and did set him over the works of your hands:
8 You have put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.
9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
11 For both he that sanctifies [makes pure] and they who are sanctified [made pure] are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren,
12 Saying, I will declare your name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto you.
13 And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God has given me.
14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers [koinoneo] of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
16 For truly he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.
17 Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
18 For in that he himself has suffered being tempted, he is able to succor [rescue] them that are tempted. [Overcoming the temptation, knowing by faith, God is with us for our Salvation.]
1 Peter 1
20 Who truly was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.
22 Seeing you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren [philadelphia], see that you love one another with a pure heart fervently:
23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which lives and abides for ever.
24 For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower thereof falls away:
25 But the word of the LORD endures for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.
 
1 Peter 2
1 Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speaking,
2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that you may grow thereby:
3 If so be you have tasted that the LORD is gracious.
4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,
5 You also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
 
1 Peter 3
8 Finally, be you all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren [philadelphos], be pitiful, be courteous:
9 Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that you are thereunto called, that you should inherit a blessing.
10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:
11 Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.
12 For the eyes of the LORD are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the LORD is against them that do evil.
13 And who is he that will harm you, if you be followers of that which is good?
14 But and if you suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are you: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;
15 But sanctify the LORD God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that askes you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:
16 Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.
 
Psalms 32
1 Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.
2 Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputes not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile [deception or manipulation].
3 When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long.
4 For day and night your hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah.
5 I acknowledge my sin unto you, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah.
6 For this shall every one that is godly pray unto you in a time when you may be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto him.
7 You are my hiding place; you shall preserve me from trouble; you shall compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah.
8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go: I will guide you with mine eye.
9 Be you not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they [the floods] come near unto you.
10 Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusts in the LORD, mercy shall compass him about.
11 Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, you righteous: and shout for joy, all you that are upright in heart.
 
Job 38
1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
2 Who is this that darkened counsel by words without knowledge?
3 Gird up now your loins like a man; for I will demand of you, and answer you me.
4 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if you have understanding.
5 Who has laid the measures thereof, if you know? or who has stretched the line upon it?
6 Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof;
7 When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
8 Or who shut up the sea with doors, when it brake forth, as if it had issued out of the womb?
9 When I made the cloud the garment thereof, and thick darkness a swaddling-band for it,
10 And brake up for it my decreed place, and set bars and doors,
11 And said, Hitherto shall you come, but no further: and here shall your proud waves be stayed?
12 Have you commanded the morning since your days; and caused the dayspring to know his place;
13 That it might take hold of the ends of the earth, that the wicked might be shaken out of it?
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