Coming “Straight Outta Darkness” requires TRUTH in God’s Word! There is nothing more important than to make sure that we are on the right road when it comes to where we are going to spend eternity. Romans 3:23 tells us that “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” “FOR ALL” that’s you and I. No matter our position in life, no matter WHO WE ARE, none of us are without sin. 2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a worker who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.
Here me now, before you mindlessly accept any teaching as truth, ask yourself, is the Bible, truly, truthfully, God’s Word? If you want to come “Straight Outta Darkness” you must answer YES! If you answer no to this question, then with all love I can muster, there is no sense in you reading any further!
John 17:17 Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth. John tells us here that we are to be set apart from the world. God’s Word is Truth! Man’s beliefs, his doctrines must align with God’s Word, or he will not be in Truth! Look at it this way, say you are in a dark room, and without warning, someone opens the door, and the sun’s light comes streaming in. Your eyes, which are accustomed to the dark, are now blinded with light. They’re times that THE TRUTH of God’s Word can be blinding! However, eternity is too long to be wrong! 1 Peter 2:9 …who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;
Coming Straight Outta Darkness
As we begin our journey “Straight Outta Darkness”, let me say this, it is never a good idea to take one Scripture and make a doctrine out of it! The Word tells us that Deuteronomy 19:15 “A single witness shall not rise up against a person regarding any wrongdoing or any sin that he commits; on the testimony of two or three witnesses, a matter shall be confirmed. It also says in Matthew 18:16 But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that on the testimony of two or three witnesses every matter may be confirmed. As well as Proverbs 11:14 Where there is no guidance the people fall, But in an abundance of counselors there is victory. While considering these Scriptures, it is not hard to determine that we need multiple scriptures to build a foundation for our doctrinal beliefs!
Let me give you one sad example of taking one Scripture and misusing it. Let’s look at John 3:16, probably one of the most known Scriptures in the Word. John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. Taking this verse ALONE, you could determine is that all you have to do is Believe, and you would be saved. But let’s flip back to Matthew, and we read in Matthew 7:14 For the gate is narrow and the way is constricted that leads to life, and there are few who find it. Now Jesus was speaking in both verses, so which of the two are right? Both!
Believing Something Doesn’t Make It Right!
Dear Reader, the simple act of believing something doesn’t make it right. I can believe with all my heart that I am the best looking man in the world, but the mirror and others tell me different. As stated earlier, eternity is too long to be wrong. It’s better to find out the TRUTH concerning Salvation! Or you could wind up believing yourself to be saved while walking straight into Hell! So let’s take this journey together, examining Scriptures while looking for examples of actual people being lead “Straight Outta Darkness!“
As we begin our journey, let’s take a look at Matthew 16:15-19 He said to them, “But who do you yourselves say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.”
Pay special attention to verse 19 here. Jesus gives Peter the Keys to the Kingdom. What does this mean? Well, let me explain it this way. Back in Peter’s day, when a man was made a doctor of the law, they gave him a key to a closet in the Temple. In this closet was the Sacred Holy Books. Having this key, signified that one had the authority to teach and or to explain the Scriptures to the people of that time. Thus, Jesus gave Peter the authority to teach/preach to the people how to get into the Kingdom of God!
The 5 W’s to the Keys To The Kingdom that will lead you “Straight Outta Darkness!”
WHO! The above paragraph explains pretty well, who had the Keys To The Kingdom! Peter was given the keys by Jesus, Himself!
What! What are the Keys To The Kingdom? For us to find this out, let’s look at the first few chapters of the Book of Acts. Let’s begin in Acts 1:3-5 To these He also presented Himself alive after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of things regarding the kingdom of God. 4 Gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, “Which,” He said, “you heard of from Me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
By our above text, we can see that being baptized with the Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost) is one of the keys to the Kingdom of God. With this being the fact, what does it mean to be baptized with the Holy Ghost? First, let me say this, the terms Holy Ghost and Holy Spirit are interchangeable in Scripture! Both are translated from the same Greek word in the original texts. When you or I receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost, it is an experience of God’s power coming into our lives.
As we read in Matthew 3:11, John the Baptist prophesies that Jesus, the One of whom he spoke, would baptize with the Holy Ghost and with fire. “Matthew 3:11 As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”
The Greek word that is translated baptism means “to be immersed; to be totally covered”. Let’s look at the physical demonstration of water baptism. When we come to be baptized in water, we go down into the water, the water completely covers us. We are buried with water, we are immersed, totally under the water. When we receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost, we are immersed and covered and filled with the Holy Ghost.
John 3:5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless someone is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. Here we read that Jesus uses the same word baptism with the outpouring of the Holy Ghost! He explains to His disciples that just as John had baptized with water, they would be baptized with the Holy Ghost. The word baptize gave His followers an idea of what they were to expect—that they would be immersed with His Spirit.
To be filled with the Holy Ghost, we first must use one of the keys to the Kingdom. A person must first believe IN JESUS! “Justification” is the transition from sin to right-relationship with God. “Faith” is the belief that God will keep his promise. With all this being said, let’s continue with our 5 W’s to see WHEN & WHERE Peter used the Keys To The Kingdom!
WHEN & WHERE
To see the WHEN & WHERE we begin where the New Testament Church began, Acts 2. By reading Acts 2:1-17, we know that the Apostles were among the 120 who were filled with the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost. Asking ourselves, “How do we know that they were filled with the Holy Ghost?” Well, we look closely at Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with different tongues, as the Spirit was giving them the ability to speak out.
This action caused amazement among the onlookers who heard them ask, “What does this mean?” (Acts 2:12) Take notice this is the What & When in our 5 W’s. In Acts 2:14, Peter begins to use the Keys to the Kingdom given to him by Jesus. It was at this very moment, the ORIGINAL PLAN OF SALVATION was preached. Peter began to preach Christ and to convince people to come “Straight Outta Darkness!”
Put yourself in their shoes for a moment! The people listening to Peter just realized that they had crucified Christ! “Oh, what a tangled web we weave!” Look at Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what are we to do?” As you can see, they were sorry for their sins, asking Peter and the Apostles what they should do.
Luke 24:45-49 Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, 46 and He said to them, “So it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 And behold, I am sending the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”
Acts 2:38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Take notice of the three elements of the plan of salvation. Notice the above verses Luke 24:45-49 and Acts 2:38 1. Repentance 2. Remission of sins through baptism in Jesus’ Name 3. Receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost!
We can most assuredly see that Peter preached what Jesus commanded them to preach. Before moving on, I want to point out one more Scripture. Go back up to Acts 2:14 But Peter, taking his stand with the other eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: “Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, know this, and pay attention to my words. “With the other eleven”! Here we see there was no discord among the brethren. The other eleven was standing with Peter, amening if you will!
But this is only one example, you may be saying. OK, let’s flip over to Acts 8.14-17 Now when the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent them Peter and John, 15 who came down and prayed for them that they would receive the Holy Spirit. 16 (For He had not yet fallen upon any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) 17 Then they began laying their hands on them, and they were receiving the Holy Spirit.
By reading Acts chapter 8, we see that Samaria believed Phillip’s preaching, which caused repentance. Then they were baptized in the Name of Jesus and received the Holy Ghost!
Personal Story Time
Let me share with you some of my personal life. Back in the day, when I was a young, healthy man, I was a salesman. (I managed rent to own stores. This was before the Holy Ghost! 🙂 Trying to stay humble yet tell the story, I was the top salesman in the company. One of the sales techniques that I still carry with me is to answer objections before the customer speaks them. Showing the customer the value in a product while anticipating objections.
As an Evangelist, my goal is to Teach, Preach, Live Jesus. To teach and or preach Jesus, I first must KNOW HIM! The way I know Him is by studying His Word to show myself approved. Then, I perform my God-appointed duties by leading people “STRAIGHT OUTTA DARKNESS” to Christ!
An objection that usually comes up in Acts 8 is Samaria. “Wasn’t Samaria saved when they believed? Because they had great joy!” We know that Peter taught us that we must Repent, be baptized, and filled with the Holy Ghost! Please understand, “Believing is not enough!” Take a look at James 2:19 You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe and shudder. The devils believe and tremble because they know they are not saved. “Believing is not enough!” We must follow the TRUE PLAN OF SALVATION just as Jesus taught and Peter preached!
Need more proof, Acts 10 once again we see Peter spreading the Word. This time he was with a man named Cornelius. Once again, Peter taught Repentance, Jesus Name Baptism, and the infilling of the Holy Ghost. Let’s take a look at one of the best evangelists in the history of the world, Paul! Acts 19:1-6 teaches us that it doesn’t matter who baptized you. If you have not been baptized in the Name of Jesus, you must be re-baptized.
Let me close by saying this. When I first believed, I was in a denomination that teaches all you have to do to be saved was to believe. (I refuse to call out this denomination’s name due to the love and respect that I have for not only those that planted the seed of Christ in my life but for the family and friends who are still among them.) But that teaching goes against what the Word of God says. Do I consider them lost, you may ask? It’s not my decision. All I can do is to show you what God’s Word says. Rightly dividing the Word of Truth! Expounding His Word more perfectly, if you will.
If we truly believe what the Word of God says in Ephesians 4:5-6 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all. Then we must follow to the letter what Jesus taught and the Apostles did. Repentance, Jesus Name Baptism and the infilling of the Holy Ghost!
The last of our 5 W’s, Why! Because I don’t want to be wrong when it comes to Salvation. I want to come “STRAIGHT OUTTA DARKNESS” into His loving Arms! May God Bless us all and keep us safe!
Powerhouse Radio Network and Apostolic Mountain are covered under the ministry of Apostolic Powerhouse Ministries. The below Scriptures are included for your convenience. They are taken from the NET Bible version from Bible Gateway. It won’t end the world if you read a different version, but it may change how you see what you read. I feel it is wise to learn the Word from more than one Bible version. No offense is intended if you disagree. We are Absolutely Apostolic & Passionately Pentecostal! *Outspoken Apostolic!