AUDIO-BOOK Withered Branch.mp3
We who follow the Lord, we can have comfort in these end times, and the Lord will provide for us in more and more supernatural ways. We don't know when our last day will be. I know there were Christians in world war two, a terrible time worldwide, and they were supernaturally provided for by Jesus. I know of Christians in other places of the world that had extreme poverty due to government persecution, and they were looked after by the Lord. You see, the Lord always looks after his people and he provides for those who lay faith in him.
Now, why can I say that with certainty? I say that, because the Lord God himself said in Ezekiel, that the person who lays faith in him is like a tree planted by the stream, and the drought comes and the hard times come, but this person always bears fruit because his roots go into the living water.
You Are The Branches
The man who doesn't trust in God and makes his own arm his strength; he makes flesh his strength, he looks for man's wisdom and help, he is like the man that grows in the desert bush in the middle of the parched places of the desert where the salt bushes are, and he's got no hope!
When we rely on our own arm and our own strength, then the Lord doesn't help us. Dear friends, we need to have our roots in the living water.
I want to read to you a parable from Jesus. Now Jesus had just told the Jews to repent. He said, I tell you unless you repent you will all likewise perish…. Then he spoke this parable: A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and he didn't find any, so he said to the keeper of the vineyard,“Look for three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree and I found none, cut it down! Why does it use up the ground?” But he answered and said to him, “Sir leave it alone this year, I'll dig around it and fertilize it and if it bears fruit then we will not have to cut it down”. Luke 13:6
I want to put your attention on this parable, because there are many believers who believe that true Christians will never end up in the fires of hell. But these trees in the vineyard, they are not pagans! They are people who believe in Jesus.
Now this tree wasn't bearing any fruit, so this tree is likened unto a believer of Jesus who believes, but he does not bear any fruit. Jesus comes to their tree and doesn't see any fruit there, and the Father in heaven comes again next year and the next, and still no fruit, so the Father says, “Let us cut this tree out of the ground and cast it away.”
But Jesus says, “No, no, let me water this tree,” because Jesus, remember, is here to save people (and Jesus and the Father are one God). So Jesus says, “Let me water this tree and if it still doesn't bear fruit after one year, then cut it down.”
So, what Jesus does, is he works in your heart and he tries to push you to repent for a year. He brings about many situations to bring your life down so bad, that you need to cry out to him and seek to know him.
Some people they just don't learn and they just don't bear any fruit.
They end up getting cut down!
I want to read about this little further where Jesus says in John 15, If anyone does not abide in me, he is thrown away as a branch that withers; and such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire and burned: for I am the good vine and you are the branches, and my Father is the gardener.
The gardener cuts off every branch in me that does not bear fruit, and every withered branch.
If you abide in me and my words abide in you, you will ask of me, and shall be done for you that my Father will be glorified.
Jesus said, “Apart from me you can do nothing.” He says you cannot bear fruit: “A branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine.”
Then he goes on to say that the branches that don't abide in the vine, they wither and the Father cuts them off.
So these branches I want to talk about today, are Christians! They're not pagans and unbelievers, they are not atheists, nor Muslims or Buddhists.
These branches are Christians; they are abiding in Jesus and what happens is, they cut themselves off from Jesus and they wither on the vine, and the Father doesn't allow withered branches to stay on the vine, so he cuts them off.
Jesus said that these branches are gathered up and they are thrown into the fire!
So you have to be grafted in with Jesus to bear good fruit, to be able to have the fruits of love, to have the fruits of righteousness, and have the power to turn away from your sin if you have decided to repent and turned to the Lord.
You have to do that, if not, you cannot bear good fruit! If you have decided to ask Jesus into your heart today, that means that you have been grafted into the vine and naturally, if you don't cut yourself off from Jesus, you're going to start to bear fruit; and the Father will be pleased, and he will prune your branch so you bear more good fruit.
Now Christians they cut themselves off from the good vine and their branch withers. How do we cut ourselves off from the vine? That's when we go off our own steam and power, do everything on our own, and we just make our own life. We go back to the broader way, we go back to our sin. We start sinning everyday. That's when we are cut off from Jesus, because sin cuts you off from Jesus. One sin does!
So we have to repent and connect ourselves to Jesus again, so we are not ringbarked off from Jesus.
You know the process of ringbarking don't you? The farmer get his axe and he cuts around a tree about 1 inch all the way around. This cuts off the water to the tree so the whole tree dies even though it still stands with its roots in the ground.
Same with you: if you cut yourself off from the living water, what happened is your branch, even though it is still on the vine, withers and it dies, all the leaves fall off and no fruit. And what happens is, God will cut those branches off, gather them up, and cast them into the fire.
Dear friends, we don't want to be cast into the fire, do we?
Don't Get Cut Off
We want to be focused on the Lord Jesus Christ and obeying his commandments and doing his will! You see, Jesus also likened Christians to the tree growing in his garden, the Father's vineyard. Again this isn't talking about pagans, this isn't unbelievers, this is Christians people who believe in Jesus. They get planted in the Father's vineyard. They are the fig trees there, and they are likened unto a fig tree where the roots go into the ground, the good ground which is Jesus Christ.
But the thing is this fig tree that we read about in Luke Chapter 13, didn't bear any fruit. It had lots of green leaves but didn't have any fruit. Now that is a Christian who doesn't go out and work for the Lord Jesus Christ.
They live their own life and they're not interested in being fruitful in the kingdom of God, and what happens is the Father sees they have got no fruit and so he says, “Let's cut this tree down, it is useless and a waste of ground place.”
And Jesus pleads and says no, because he is the keeper, the tender, and he tends these trees so they will bear fruit. He says, “I'm going to fertilize it. I'm going to help this tree to bear fruit, and if it still doesn't in the year, then we are going to cut it down...” and it will be thrown out of the garden.
Christians say that we can't ever lose our salvation once we have invite Jesus into our heart, yet they don't realize that if they don't bear good fruit and if they cut themselves off from the vine so their branch withers, that means they're going to be cut off and cast into the fire!
We have to be serious, dear friends, about these truths from Jesus Christ. These aren't my own words. Jesus himself said those things, so you tell me if the branch that is grafted into the good vine of Jesus Christ, is that not a believer? Yes or no!
If that branch decides to cut itself off from the living water from the vine and withers up, does not Jesus say that the branch would be cut off and thrown into the fire, destroyed? Yes!
So we have to leave behind foolish thinking and instead embrace the teachings of Jesus Christ today, and obey the Lord.
Now how do we bear this good fruit that we need for the kingdom of God, so we don't get cut off?
How do we do this?
There is only one way, dear friends, and that is you must be connected to the good vine; you must have the living water come flowing into you.
People say, “Well, how does this happen? How do we get this living water just flowing into us?”
Well Jesus said how, he said, “If anybody wants to to drink of the living water and the bread of life, let him come to me.
If anybody thirsts, come to me and I'll give him water to drink, and he'll never be thirsty again. If anybody hungers, let him come to me.”
Jesus said that, the son of God.
So you have to go to Jesus.
Now people say, “Well how can we go to Jesus?”
People! we have to leave our fleshy minds at home, and we got to start thinking spiritually here, because God and Jesus are Spirit and we are spirit; except we are just at home in a flesh body at the moment, nevertheless you are a spirit.
What you have to do, is to close your eyes and pray and start seeking the Lord in faith. And if you believe in him, but you don't bear good fruit, then you're really close to being cut off, or cut down. It is time to pray and press in with prayer towards Jesus, and don't stop until you find him. Don't stop until that peace and that power from heaven comes into your life. Don't stop. because once the Lord in your life that's when you change instantly. That's when the trouble goes out of your mind. That's when you be set free from sin. Suddenly you are free from sin. You don't have a desire anymore to go and smoke cigarets, or go and drink. You've lost your desire to swear and curse. You've lost your desire for many things.
Sure these things can come back and try and tempt you. You know Satan, he is never a good loser and he does try and come back and try and get a foothold in you again. This is where you have to be zealous because you can become cut off from the living water again, and your branch can wither up if you listen to Satan.
You can stop bearing fruit and become a useless fruitless tree, if you listen to temptation and go follow it.
You got to turn away, dear friends, in your heart and your mind. That's how we love the Lord with all our heart and all our mind.
We can love sin with all our heart and all our mind too. It depends who you want to be loyal to join with.
Do you want to obey the first commandment to love the Lord your God with all your hearts and all your mind? Or do you want to love sin with all your heart and mind?Because that's how we love things, we love them in our hearts and minds.
We have to decide to deny our hearts and minds of our love of sin within the heart and within the mind, and turn it down during temptation.
Once you do that and you give yourself to the Lord Jesus, you stay in the power to do right!
No, I am not saying you'll never be harassed by Satan, or by your own flesh. You'll get harassed and you may be discouraged at times, but take heart for you follow Jesus and he has overcome the world.
You know, even if you face terrible persecution or whatever, Jesus has overcome the world and his power will flow into you: so you're going to be able to turn the other cheek to your enemy, you are going to be able to forgive people you don't want to forgive.
I know it's hard to forgive sometimes, especially when nobody stops their evil against you and they don't repent, but we've got to forgive still.
When brethren, for instance, divide against you, that might hurt you. But we are to forgive them and pray for them, and we have to hold no malice in our hearts.
This is the power of the Lord Jesus enabling us to do these things bearing the good fruits for the kingdom of God! Praise the Lord. We must focus on the Lord Jesus in prayer until we find him.
Once you find him, then you're going to be able to come into his presence and have the living water flow through you, and not get cut off by God, because you bear good fruit.
I can read it to you again from Luke 13 where Jesus said, “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came to seek fruit from it, and he found none so he said to the keeper of his vineyard, 'Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit and I find none! Cut it down it is using up good ground.' But he answered him and said, 'Sir let it alone this year and I'll dig around it and fertilize it, and if it bears fruit, well we wont cut it down.'”
Are you bearing fruit? Has the Lord God, come to your tree year after year and finds you bearing no good fruit? Can he find no fruit on your tree? Does he finds just sin there?
Well guess what! He is going to want to get you cut off and thrown out, and Jesus pleads, “No I will fertilize this person. I will help him.”
And what if you don't listen? Are you listening to Jesus today? Let us listen dear friends. We don't want to be cut off, and cut out of the kingdom of God. We want to be focused on the Lord Jesus Christ so we can bear good fruit of the kingdom of God, hallelujah!
Bearing Good Fruit
Who wants to bear good fruit? I want to! I want to continue pressing on in the kingdom with Jesus Christ bearing good fruit from his power.
I used to bear a lot of bad fruit. I used to live my own life doing my own things and just follow along with this society having fun and doing what I wanted to do. I had no good fruit for the kingdom of God.
If the Father came to my tree, he would see none. I wasn't living for Jesus at all so he would see no fruit, zero, because without Jesus we read that we cannot bear any fruit.
A branch cannot bear fruit on its own.
Have you ever seen a dry branch like this? Have you ever seen such bear fruit by itself?
You can't either. Like this branch you can't bear good fruit unless you connect into the good vine, to the good tree Jesus Christ. That's what I did! I got on my knees and prayed to the Lord, “Please Lord know me, help me, I want to serve you.”
I didn't want to ask him to help me do better in my life. I didn't ask him to help me be a better 'this' or a better 'that'. I denied myself before the Lord and I said, “I want to serve you.”
I wasn't looking for him to help me, I was looking for me to help (serve) him! That's the attitude Jesus wants.
Jesus said, “Does a servant come in from ploughing and and then sit down and have the master serve him? No, certainly not! The master says to come serve me, and then after I have eaten, you can eat your food in the kitchen.”
And then Jesus goes on to say, “Does the master then thank the servant for serving him?
Of course not! In the same way you should say, 'We are servants doing our duty.'”
Dear friends, have you got that attitude? Or do you think the Lord has to serve you?
That's the problem with most of this generation, is that they think God has to serve them, yet they do nothing for him.
You know, they're not there to serve the Lord...but that's what I did: I decided I'm going to serve Jesus and forget myself. So I quit my pursuits and all the things I wanted to do and I dedicated my time to serving Jesus. Jesus came right into my life and set me free from sin, and gave me hope, strength, peace, and wisdom which all are fruits of the spirit, because Jesus is the good vine! He grafted me in so I could bear good fruit.
Under trial, he gives me the strength to keep following him. I just pray I don't fall. I don't want to fall. Maybe I can. I can fall any day, but I don't want to fall. I am dedicated to staying on the narrow way keeping myself having the living water flow into my branch, not cutting myself off from Jesus.
Im really focused on this, and in this way Jesus is able to work through me so I can bear good fruit. He will do the same for you. The Father in heaven will come along and h will say, “Well, look this branch here has good fruit.”
Then he'll have a look at another branch and say, “This branch is withered,” and he cuts it off with his pruning knife. When he's got a whole pile of dead branches on the ground, maybe he gives them a little more time, and maybe he grafts some of them back into the vine, and maybe he's grafted YOU back into the vine today as you have been a dead branch. Maybe.
But maybe then maybe you then wither up again so he doesn't give you another chance, and he just cuts you off and sweeps you straight into the fiery furnace!
Dear friends, we have to be very serious about our lives here on earth. They are fleeting: here one day and then gone the next.
Our lives will never last very long.
There are people I know from my acquaintances who died suddenly. Years ago I knew one person, he used to come riding with me and do sport together and one day he just died! He was driving his car one day, and he had a heart problem, his heart stopped, and he died on the spot. His day was completely finished.
Dear friends, life is very short. We have to decide to serve Jesus today if we want to enter the kingdom of God, because if we serve the King will also reign with the King.
If we suffer dishonor with the King, we are going to enjoy honor with the King.
If we suffer hardship with our king, with Jesus we suffer hardship with Jesus, as Jesus himself suffered hardship and he came to serve. So if we serve the King and suffered hardship or the sake of the King, will we not also reign with him, and suffer, and then reap honor with him?
So if the king has many mansions and he goes to prepare them for his people, will he not then gather his people and take them to be with him where his mansions are?
Dear friends where is your loyalty?
Your mind and your heart?
Do you instead love sin with all your mind and heart?
That is the problem. People say to me, “I can't turn away from sin.” Well it's because they love sin with all their minds and all their hearts. We have to turn away from that.
People say, “Look, I am bound to things like lust. I can't stop watching porn or doing things I shouldn't do.”
Well you love that sin with all your mind and heart don't you? So how can you turn away from it until you decide to turn away from the love of it?
Dear friends, we have to love God with all our minds and all our hearts, and while you love sin with your mind and heart, there is no room to love God with all your mind and heart.
Christian they will profess, “I love Jesus,” but hey don't have any fruit. They love sin. If you're in that situation, you are double-minded and we read in James where it says: Clean your hands you sinners, repent you double-minded, set your heart straight before God.
Decide today who you are going to be loyal to and stick with that decision. Dear friends, it is time to get dedicated unto the Lord Jesus Christ. Let us be dedicated otherwise we are just going to get cut off and thrown into the fire!
Cast Into The Firey Furnace
Now people say, “Well hell doesn't exist so what is the use? it is all in vain,” they say. “You'll just die and become nothing.”
These people don't really know the truth that is why they say that. They don't see. Not many people see.
I can tell you confidently that one day in a dream where I saw a place in hell; it was a dark area in hell and in the dark place of hell (maybe it was the outer darkness I don't know) there were a whole lot of people there, and then across to the left I saw the kingdom as another place. I saw two places and it seems to be like a big divide between the two and no crossing between the two. The people in this place were crying and weeping and crying out, “Why did nobody warn us that living a life after our own desires, ended us in this place!”
They were in a place where there was a weeping and gnashing of teeth.
I got to thinking about Jesus and the parable of the rich man who ended up in hell. This rich man said the same thing: “Please warn my brothers. I have several brothers, send someone back from the dead to warn them.” And Abraham said, “Well they have Moses and the prophets to listen to.” The man said, “They won't listen to them.”
To which Abraham said, “Well if they won't listen to Moses and the prophets, they won't listen to even Lazarus sent back from the dead.”
Dear friends, we have to listen to the prophets, to the truth, and we have far greater than a prophet now, we have Jesus Christ. He is greater than any prophet. We have someone far greater here in our midst, so we have no excuse, dear friends.
Are you heeding the warning that living a life after your own desires ends in hell? I'm sure those people could've said, “Please send somebody back and warn my family I don't want them to come here.”
In my dream I didn't hear them say that, but I'm sure they could say that. I wonder about today how many people are warned about hell?
I believe everybody knows about hell. They all mock it, not all, but many. They say, “Who cares!”
It is the futility of a fool, isn't it!
Having that attitude is as a fool, the futility of a fool.
Dear friends, we don't want to be like a foolish man, here one day and gone the next, we want to be serious about Jesus Christ, laying all our strength and hope and faith in him, living after him because we know full well that Jesus came to save the world. He said himself, “I don't come to condemn sinners.”
He didn't come to condemn you, he didn't come to condemn sinners, rather he is the gardener who pleaded with the Father, “Please don't cut this tree down. Please let me fertilize it and we'll see if it bears fruit and if it doesn't then you can cut it down.”
You see, the Father in heaven sent Jesus Christ as the mediator for you. And that is why when Jesus Christ came to the world, he came to save the world from hell. He didn't come to save the world from from just nothing. He came to save the world from hell, from the place where sin takes you.
I saw myself.
Christians they write to me and they say there's no hell. That's what Satan says too. Satan says there's no hell. Why? Because he doesn't want you to believe that you need saving, for why would you need Jesus if there is no hell?
It doesn't matter then does it! You could just live your own life, have fun in your sin and become nothing. There wouldn't be any point to come to Jesus and be saved would it?
This is because people love their sins so much, isn't it!
So they want to stay in the darkness.
But we know that there is a hell as Jesus himself said, “If your eye causes you to sin you would be better to cut it out than end in the fires of hell.”
Jesus quoted the Scriptures where it says, Their worm dies not, nor the fire is ever quenched.
We read in Revelation that their torment is forever.
Dear friends, we don't want to be cast into the lake of fire, because we love our sin and we are a useless branch that withers, and we don't bear fruit. We want to serve the Lord Jesus Christ and reign with him in his kingdom, don't we!
Then we can bring as many people into the kingdom of God as we can. We don't want to be cast out with the bad, for the Lord God comes to sort the good from the bad.
God doesn't want bad things in his kingdom. He sorts good from bad. People who really choose the Lord are made clean.
Jesus came to save the world. If everybody decided to say, “I accept the Lord Jesus today,” the whole world would be saved today. Nobody would go to hell.
Everybody who believes in Jesus Christ will be saved, as long as they don't cut themselves off from Jesus again, where their branch withers up causing them to get cut off.
Now this is where there have been a lot of problems in these last days, as many preachers have gone out into world, and there've gone and preached that Jesus saves, and the people believed, but these people believe for a little while, then fall away. They are like the seed that fell on the stony ground and they believe and they receive the truth with joy. They say, “I believe in Jesus!”
Alas, then trial and trouble comes, persecution arises, and the care of this world arise, and choke the seed out and there's no fruit.
We don't want to be like the foolish believers.
5 Foolish Bridesmaids
The foolish bridesmaids are those don't graft themselves into the living water properly, and they don't fill their lamps up with oil, and they don't bear any fruit. As Jesus himself said he would say to them, “Truly I don't know you or where you are from, depart from here.”
Thats what he said in the parable of the 10 bridesmaid.
Now we had five bridesmaids were wise and five who were foolish. These five foolish bridesmaids were not unbelievers. They were not pagans.
Christians say to me, “People go to hell because they were never saved to begin with, but once you are saved you are always saved.”
No! The five bridesmaids who were foolish, were also Christians. They had the light of the Holy Spirit, except that they just didn't take enough oil.
What did Jesus say to them? He said, “I truly do not know you, go away from here.” And they went sadly away, the door was shut.
Now the door to the wedding feast was shut. In other words Jesus was inside with all the people who followed him who were the wise bridesmaids – the people who heed what I am telling you today. They were separate from these foolish bridesmaids behind the door. Then the door was shut.
Jesus looked out the door and said, “Truly, truly, I do not know you, go away, depart from here.”
Now I'm only telling you the words of Jesus Christ. Let us not deceive ourselves. The truth of Jesus Christ must be adhered to and followed, and if we do indeed follow these truths we will inherit the kingdom of God. Is not that wonderful! All you have to do is give your life to Jesus Christ, seek him with all your heart, and stay with him till the end. That's all you have to do.
Keep away from your sin, and once he sets you free from your sin, don't go back. If you do, repent and come back out of it. Don't get cut off. If you do this unto the end you will be saved.
Salvation is easy if you stay with the Lord. It's only when you walk off and you go your own way that salvation gets very hard. It gets hard for you because you don't want to leave your life. You don't want to leave all your sins, and that's where people believe false doctrines, because the false doctrine gives them a sense of salvation, yet allows them to live a lousy life, allows sin and worldliness in their life, and they feel they can get away with this before God. This is because they actually become deceived in their hearts unto destruction, believing lies that is an illusion sent to them from the devil, trying to keep them out of the kingdom of God.
Let us not have this happen to us dear friends. We want to have our whole heart set on the Kingdom of God alone. Then we will reap our reward.
Your lifetime is only 50 years, maybe it is 60 years, or 70, but once you get there, then it just ends. It is not really very long, my friends. Time flies!
You might think time is a long time, but people they say they 'wake up' after 20 years and they realise how 20 years went very quickly! And then, the next 20 years goes even faster. Before they know it, they are a grandma or grandpa, and then health problems start and they really realize their mortality. Then trips to the hospital begin and then...you die!
That is just how life is. There is no getting away from from the old curse of life and death, for every man must die...
Satan's World And Success
We live in a time where we've reached the end of this whole system, and the Lord Jesus Christ wants to put it to an end. He doesn't like this system because he owns this world and he wants to take it away from Satan.
At the moment Satan rules this world, you realize that? He is the prince of this world. He is the ruler of this world. He owns the kingdoms of earth.
People think that Jesus owns the kingdoms. No, he doesn't, for if he owned them, they wouldn't be like this. He would cast them all evil out of them.
When people get successful in this world, (worldly success that leads to our downfall), this is because of Satan. People think God brings about their worldly success in all the things they do in this worldly generation.
No! Satan does it.
Satan did the same when he asked Jesus to, “Worship me and I'll give you these kingdoms.” He was going to make Jesus really successful too. He was going to give Jesus all the kingdoms of this earth, but he is a liar. Don't believe him.
Jesus didn't argue with him, because Jesus knew these kingdoms belong to Satan because all the people there, accepted and gave themselves to Satan, and so they are all legal property of Satan.
If you are still in your sins today, then Satan owns you too and he has every right over you because he is your father, and you are his son.
Believe it or not, but if you love sin and you live a life of sin, Satan is actually your father of choice.
But we don't want to have Satan as our father no more dear friends. 1 John chapter 3 says that those who go on in sin and love lies, their father is Satan.
But the heavenly Father who is in heaven, he is the Father of those who turn away from sin and follow Jesus. We then become children of God.
We are not Satan's children no more.
When you go praying for worldly wealth and worldly success, you actually really are giving ear to Satan. For if you want to sacrifice your salvation for the world, Satan will give you the world.
He will make you successful if he can get you to to reject Jesus Christ and become lost. And then once you're lost he is going to break you. Satan will start turning on you and he'll make everything go bad and get you killed.
People they reach the end of their pop music careers and they're broken people. They feel so sad. They are taking drugs all the time and they die really young often at 50 years of age or less. Often these people just make up to 50 years. Satan really comes down hard on them once he deceived them, for he is a wicked master. He has no mercy. He deceives them with the world and then takes it away right at the last minute. He is like those 'Chinese water torturers,' dripping the water in front of them just to torment them, yet their thirst is never quenched.
That's what Satan is like. He is a liar. He will give you the world then he will take it away, but we who follow Jesus will be provided for. Jesus will allow us to have an honest job. Jesus himself was a carpenter, and even though we are within Satan's kingdoms, we are a light inside Satan's world.
This isn't God's world, it is Satan's world. We are a light inside Satan's world, his kingdoms, and Jesus is going to come and throw this ruler out of this world, and when he does he will also get all the people who love Satan and they will be sent away to be with Satan.
In Jesus' kingdom, his people will be there. His rules, his law. All the things that he's going to bring upon this earth soon are going to be his own. We read about that in the book of Revelation what will happen: lions will no longer have to to jump on the animals to eat them, The lion will lie down with the lamb. The cobra won't hurt the child.
There will be no more of this system of sin. Satan's world is one of dog eat dog to get to the top. And once you get to the top there is nothing there and its all griefs and sorrows.
Jesus' world is one where the lion lies down with the lamb. Thats what it says in the book of Revelation.
This system we see now, doesn't belong to Jesus. It is Satan's system. People striving to get the top, that is Satan's way: people are striving to do the best they can in all the things they want to do in this world, yet they don't follow Jesus. That's the way of Satan.
All the sport you see, that's all satan too. All these distractions keep you from going to heaven and being fruitful in the Kingdom of God.
One thing you must realize is that when Jesus comes, he is going to cast the ruler out of this world, satan, and throw him into the bottomless pit. He is going to bring about the day of judgment. Everybody will stand before the Lord and they'll be judged according to every thing that they have done.....