Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr. presents a Biblical lesson in worship, faith, and what it really means to be born again, in his February 7, 2016 sermon, “What Nicodemus Did Not Know.”
Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr. delivered an insightful sermon based on John 3, which tells the story of Jesus’ instruction of Nicodemus, a Pharisee and member of the Jewish ruling council.
“Nicodemus came to Jesus at night and said, ‘Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with Him,’” read Bishop Blake. “Jesus replied, ‘Very truly I tell you, no one can see the Kingdom of God unless they are born again.’”
Before the sermon, Bishop Blake prayed, “Nothing is beyond His power. Nothing is beyond His wisdom. Turn it over to Jesus; He’s going to handle it on your behalf. Halleluiah! Halleluiah!”
“All of those who wrote in the Old and New Testaments were Jewish people. Even Jesus himself, according to His earthly nature, was a Jew, as was Paul and all of the disciples.”
“Especially the Pharisees among the Jews were known as the most devout individuals in that nation. Animal sacrifices and blood atonement had been the very foundation of the Jewish faith.”
“The Old Testament contained very strict instructions and guidelines, not only regarding their sacrifices, but also the nature in which the sacrifices were presented, and also where the sacrifices could be offered up and where Israel was to worship before the Lord.”
“The Greeks ruled over Jerusalem and Judea, then Romans ruled over Jerusalem and Judea…The ability of the Jews to really practice their faith was frequently disrupted, and finally they gave up on temple worship and sacrifices all together…This explains the obsession of the Jews with Jerusalem and the spot where the temple was formerly located.”
“Nicodemus…represents not only himself individually, but he represents all of the Pharisees, and his Jewish bretheren, and he even represents all of us.”
“God judged them, and rejected any human effort they might make to…be in the favor of almighty God. Isaiah reflects this in chapter 1:11-15, and again in Psalm 14:2.”
“To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices to Me?”
Says the Lord.
When you spread out your hands,
I will hide My eyes from you;
Even though you make many prayers,
I will not hear.
Your hands are full of blood” – Isaiah 1:11&15
“Is there anybody here who has seen a human relationship totally devastated?…Is there anybody who knows what it means to be through? God was through!”
“All the books of the New Testament were written after the crucifixion, after the burial, and after the resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ. Each of the New Testament writers wrote with a vision of the crucified and ascended Lord before their eyes.”
“Many of the things which Jesus spoke of …would be understood and realized only after His resurrection.”
“Resurrection bodies are designed to be ascended and caught up into the presence of God.”
“His resurrection body was affected by time and place… Jesus is now available to everyone at the same time.”
“Unless He left them physically, He could not come to them spiritually.”
“We walk by faith and not by sight.”
“Are there any worshipers in the house?”
“I know you’d get more excited if you saw Jesus walking up and down these aisles; I know you’d clap your hands and shout if you could touch Him and see Him physically, but listen: we walk by faith! In faith God is pleased!”
“Nicodemus didn’t know that Jesus was going to die for the sins of the world.” – Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr.
“God said, ‘I’m taking this thing over now!’”
“Without faith, the Bible says it is impossible to please God.”
“Nicodemus didn’t know that Jesus was going to die for the sins of the world; he did know that Jesus was going to rise up from the dead.”
“We know that Jesus is alive. His spirit is at work in the earth.”
“The resurrection of Jesus is the key event informing us that Jesus is the Son of God.”
“Jesus is unique among all men in that He died and arose, never to die again.”
“Jesus performed other miracles that affirmed His divinity, but His resurrection was a definitive statement regarding His Lordship over everything.”
“If Jesus can defeat death, then Jesus can defeat anything.”
“If He’s got power over death, then He has power over everything; power over sickness, power over infirmities, power over the devil, over any force that may come against us.”
“Because He lives, we shall live also.”
“The more you read the Bible, the more you know about God.” – Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr.
“If you hear of my home-going, don’t worry…Go ahead, roll me down the aisle. Go ahead, take me to the burial place. Go ahead, eat the fried chicken! Have a good time! Don’t worry about me! I shall rise again!”
“No other religion can make that claim. We can point to the grave of Mohamed, of Buddha, and they’re still occupied. But [Jesus’] grave is empty! My savior is alive!”
“Through Jesus we have peace with God. Because of Jesus we have life.”
“Jesus was not just instructing Nicodemus. When you accept Jesus, you become a new creature.”
“You’re old but you can still be born again.”
“If you feed the flesh, the flesh will grow. If you feed the spirit the spirit will grow.”
“You feed the spirit man when you read the Word of God.”
“The more you read the Bible, the more you know about God.”
“I am what the Word says I can do! I am everything the Bible says I am!”
“The Word says it and I believe it! Come on and praise Him!”
“Whatever the problem is, take it to Jesus!”
“Jesus is unique among all men in that He died and arose, never to die again.” – Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr.
“You feed the spirit man when you receive the Holy Ghost.”
“Raise your hands and say, ‘Lord, fill me with the Holy Ghost! Lord, I need your power! I want your presence! I want your blessing!”
“When you feed the spirit man you feed Him by worship and with praise. When you praise Him, you’re fueling up; you’re building up the spirit man.”
“When you praise him, God shows up in a special way. He said, ‘I am enthroned in the praises in My people. When they praise Me, I show up in power; I show up in might. I bring miracles, I bring blessings, I bring deliverance into their lives.’”
“Child of God will you throw up your hands, open up your mouth and praise Him?”
“Nicodemus didn’t know all of this, but we know it!
“Tell two people, ‘I know what God can do; I know there’s power in the name of Jesus! I know I can be healed! I know I can be set free! I know!’”
“God is moving! Halleluiah!”
SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES – John 3:1-16, Joshua 1:8, Leviticus 1&2, 17:11; Deuteronomy 12:13, Isaiah 1:11-15, Psalm14:2, Romans 3:23, 6:23, John 7:37-39, 20:17, 16:7, 14:23, John 4:23, 3:16, 1 Corinthians 15:20-22, 50; 1 John 5:10, 2 Corinthians 5:17, 1 Thessalonians 4:16, Psalm 119:105, Acts 1:8.
Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake’s full sermon, “What Nicodemus Did Not Know” is available on CD and DVD at the West Angeles Emporium.