Our story told through a 1,000 different colours, lenses and voices...
until you KNOW the story, YOUR STORY.
Our story told through a 1,000 different colours, lenses and voices...
until you KNOW the story, YOUR STORY.
until you KNOW the story, YOUR STORY.
until you KNOW the story, YOUR STORY.
Study as the Berean's proving and testing to ensure that what you choose to embrace is TRUTH. The purpose of this website is to share with you my Bible research and what I have learned from other people who have done extensive and comprehensive research. The greatest things begin at the size of a mustard seed.
In part 3 of this series, discussed is the spiritual story of rain, wind, the east wind and fire. Each force of nature was designed by God before creation to mirror forces in the unseen spiritual world. God is the great teacher who has not left us without a guide. Our world on earth is a complete mirror of the unseen world and we are without excuse.
God's Coded Language is transparent. Trees, vines and flowers all tell the story of different types of leaders, their roles and the great secret kept from mankind by Wickedness.
God is consistent in His use of His coded language. The imagery in the scriptures can be easily decoded when you understand how to use the key. Unlock the mysteries and enter into the world of Almighty God. You will find treasures never seen before and riveting prophesies lying on our near horizon.
Unlike secret societies and corrupt political and religious leaders, God Almighty is transparent. He has provided all of mankind with evidence of His existence and power. To His people, He has given them all what they need to know about His plan for them and the nations of the world. At the end of the age, God will judge all people; they will be without excuse.
“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse” (Romans 1:20).
The transparency of God is unveiled through His use of imagery, mirroring, parables, parallels and numbers, stories, foreshadows not to mention creation all around us on earth.
God is consistent in His use of His coded language. The imagery in the scriptures can be easily decoded when you understand how to use the key. Unlock the mysteries and enter into the world of Almighty God. You will find treasures never seen before and riveting prophesies lying on our near horizon.
“But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, to the general assembly and CHURCH of the FIRSTBORN who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect” (Hebrews 12:22-23).
The story of the firstborn is rarely fully understood by most Judo-Christians. This special group are an enigma who are richly blessed by God. They stand out from the crowd as the strong, the faithful, the enduring and the humble servants of God following Christ wherever he goes during times of peace and times of painful distress. Their salvation is guaranteed; they are enrolled in heaven.
Satan and his rogue heavenly powers keep their story from being understood. Silencing is their tactic achieved through mocking truth, ridiculing truth-seekers and hating those who speak out. The revelation of the knowledge of the Church of the Firstborn would become a significant blow to the agenda of Wickedness.
THE DOUBLE PORTION, THE FATHER’S STRENGTH
God Almighty promises to bless the firstborn with a double portion. “When that man assigns his inheritance to his sons he must not appoint the son of the beloved wife as the firstborn over the son of the unloved wife. Instead, he must acknowledge the firstborn, the son of his unloved wife, by giving him a double portion of all that he has. For that son is the firstfruits of his father’s strength; the right of the firstborn belongs to him” (Deuteronomy 17:20-21).
God directed the ancient Israelites to bless the firstborn son of the family with a double portion of the family inheritance. Why?
There are two aspects to the firstborn blessing:
1. It reflects the strength of the father/God the Father
2. It mirrors the promise to the saints in the first resurrection of a double portion.
This double portion given to the firstborn son in the family mirrors the first resurrection of the firstborn saints comprising of men and women throughout the ages. They will receive a double portion in God’s family after they are resurrected. They will receive the greater portion; they are part of the better resurrection. This promise was foretold by God; it remains absolute. The remembrance of this promise is commanded by God, but most have forgotten it as time has eroded truth and replaced it with a mixing of pagan celebrations and Hebraic history.
God’s strength is manifested through the work of His hands leading people to repent, accept Christ’s sacrifice, receive His Holy Spirit and transform into obedient, humble, God-fearing and God-loving people. This spiritual birth is the display of God’s strength that no other god can achieve. This lesson is recorded throughout the Bible and overlooked by most theologians. That is the focus of this study.
On one day long, long ago an event happened that prophesied the greatest success story that has ever been told and with that event another was confirmed that prophesied the gracious promise ever to be revealed.
With the death of One, came the saving of many. Within the many, one group in particular will receive a special saving and the double blessing; these are the firstborn.
GOD vs gods
This story began in Egypt. Gods warring against the Almighty God. Who is greatest? Who is the all-mighty King was the core of the battle? The people didn’t know. The Egyptian people were told by their god created the Nile, that great river that supported life. He claimed to have the ability to create.
“Speak to him and say: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: ‘I am against you, Pharaoh king of Egypt, you great monster lying among your streams. You say, ‘The Nile belongs to me; I made it for myself’” (Ezekiel 29:3).
The Israelites feared the gods. They had felt pain from the power these gods held and they were not convinced that their God was the All-Powerful and All-Mighty God. Four hundred years living in Egypt had eroded their memories of the God of the Hebrews and His great work.
Into the 21st century the concept of gods ruling over nations has become a myth—a forgotten piece in history that keeps Biblical scholars from seeing the full picture.
God, the Creator of all took the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as His inheritance—His rulership, their King. On the day he did that, He gave members in His Heavenly Court their inheritance—rulership over the nations—gods ruling over the nations. Recorded in the Song of Moses is this story, long forgotten and what is remembered is misunderstood.
“When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, when He divided the sons of man, He set the boundaries of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God [in His Heavenly Court]. But the LORD’s portion is His people, Jacob His allotted inheritance” (Deuteronomy 32:8-9).
The nations inherited sons of God as kings over them because the people were going astray, again. God divided the people in groups at the time of Babel and gave them their own territory. Their rulers were all members of God’s Heavenly Court. These sons were experts in God’s law and His ways. They were considered great heavenly leaders, but one by one, they fell away and turned against their Creator, the Almighty God. In doing so, they turned the people away from God Almighty. These heavenly rulers were powerful and demanded obedience. They became cruel and the people feared them.
Forbidden practices that took place before the flood, happened again; history was repeated then and will repeat again in the last days. To get help from the gods, the people engaged in sorcery, black magic, child sacrificing and self-infliction. The true Almighty God was repulsed by the practices of the nations led by rogue, fallen heavenly rulers, powers and principalities (Ephesians 6:12). He warned His people, those He had given to Himself to rule over, not to practice the ways of the nations.
These rogue heavenly rulers battled then and have continued into the present against God Almighty seeking to overthrow Him and His Son, to take God’s throne and be the first to resurrect mortals who worship them not the Great, Supreme, Almighty God. Hence, this is the reason why Almighty God declared throughout the Old Testament that He is the Supreme God and there is no one like Him and His people would be among the firstborn, that is, first resurrected. King David understood the battle in heaven and the rogue heavenly rulers over the nations.
“For you, LORD, are the Most High over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods” (Psalm 97:9).
“For the LORD is the great God, the great King above all gods” (Psalm 95:3).
Judo-Christians have a fuzzy understanding of God’s creation in heaven. There exist sons of God that are identified as sons, angels, hosts, starry hosts and stars.
“God presides in the great assembly; he gives judgment among the ‘gods’” (Psalm 82:1).
“Again, there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the LORD” (Job 2:1).
God’s family is comprised of created beings both in heaven and on earth. The Apostle Paul confirmed this. God’s use of “sons” and “children” identifies the relationship in His family.
“In Him and through faith in Him we may enter God’s presence with boldness and confidence. So, I ask you not to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which are your glory. For this reason, I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name” (Ephesians 3:12-15).
Historical records of gods in all of the ancient kingdoms on earth is considered myth into the twentieth century and onwards. This disbelief is part of the playbook of Wickedness. The only enemy of mankind must be mythicized in keeping mankind ignorant and under the grip of Darkness.
The heavenly ruler of Egypt wasn’t always wicked. He built a majestic kingdom that gave glory to God initially, but his pride revealed his hidden desire for supremacy when he declared to be the Creator of the Nile. Ezekiel recorded God’s warning to this heavenly ruler who took the title of Pharaoh.
Pharaoh king of Egypt, “Who can be compared with you in majesty? Consider Assyria, once a cedar in Lebanon…” (Ezekiel 31:2).
God’s reference to Assyria as a cedar in Lebanon is not referring to a country in Lebanon called Assyria as there is no such situation. God is using terms specific to His Heavenly Court which is in Lebanon in heaven. Assyria imaged as a cedar tree is God’s use of language to help mortals on earth understand creation in heaven. The great cedars on earth bring an immediate rich visual of the most spectacular trees on earth. They have the unique qualities that mirror the great leaders in God’s headquarters. These tall and grand trees are dimensionally stable with a built-in thermal insulator. With oils that act as natural preservatives, these trees are resistant to bacteria and fungus. To top it off, they release a fresh aroma that deters pests. God created sons in heaven with all of these eternal qualities and superior strength to lead His kingdom in truth, understanding and wisdom of His law and His way. God gave the name of His headquarters in heaven, ‘Lebanon’ to mirror on earth His stately and regal leaders—His pride and joy.
A consist formula that can be applied throughout the Bible, is God’s use of imagery, which is purely designed to help us understand the unseen.
It is confusing for some scholars when the physical ruler, as it was done in Egypt, took the same title as his heavenly king. It was acceptable because they viewed the ruler on earth as being a mortal god and gods as being immortal men.
God warned His son, Pharaoh, king over Egypt. He said that he was walking in the same footsteps of the fallen heavenly ruler of Assyria [imaged as a cedar—once a great leader in God’s Heavenly Court]. God concluded, “Which of the trees [leaders] in Eden [God’s family] can be compared with you in splendor and majesty? Yet you, too, will be brought down with the trees [leaders] of Eden to the earth below; you will lie among the uncircumcised [wicked], with those killed by the sword [likely referencing the word of God]. This is Pharaoh and all his hordes,” declares the Sovereign LORD (Ezekiel 31:18).
While great things took place in Egypt, in time, the leadership led the people into sin.
The Israelites became slaves to the Egyptians and at the right time, the God of the Hebrews showed His power over the gods and led the Israelites back to the Holy Land.
The people of Egypt and the Israelites did not know who was the true Creator. Pharaoh declared himself the Creator, of the Nile. The God of Israel declared Himself the Creator of everything living. But, mortals had difficulty distinguishing one from the other because the gods ruling over the nations exercised supernatural powers.
The release of the Israelites out of Egypt would reveal who was the All-Powerful and All-Mighty God.
The story of supremacy began when:
1. The staff of Aaron, which was turned into a snake ate all the staffs of the Egyptian magicians, which had also turned into snakes (Exodus 7:12).
2. Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron to pray to the God of the Hebrews for relief from the plagues. “Pray to the LORD to take the frogs away from me and my people, and I will let your people go to offer sacrifices to the LORD” (Exodus 8:8).
Moses prayed, “It will be as you say, so that you may know there is no one like the LORD our God” (Exodus 8:10).
3. The magicians were unable to undo the two plagues they matched and failed to be able to replicate any of the remaining eight plagues.
4. The physical ruler over Egypt was being taught who rules supreme. He came to learn that the God of the Hebrews is Supreme. To Moses he said, “The LORD is in the right, and I and my people are in the wrong. Pray to the LORD, for we have had enough thunder and hail.” Pharaoh acknowledged the God of the Hebrews’ supremacy over all gods. Almighty God responded, “I will send the full force of my plagues against you and against your officials and your people, so you may know that there is no one like me in all the earth. For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the earth. But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth” (Exodus 9:14).
5. The heavenly ruler over Egypt had no power to prevent the plagues on Egypt and the earthly Pharaoh knew it as well as the magicians. Those who believed Moses and heeded the warnings were saved.
6. The physical ruler over Egypt acknowledged his sins and asked for forgiveness to the only God who can forgive. “I have sinned against the LORD your God and against you. Now forgive my sin once more and pray to the LORD your God to take this deadly plague away from me” (Exodus 10:16).
7. The death of all the firstborn sons of only the Egyptians was God intentionally distinguishing His people who He was purging of sin from the Egyptian people who had fallen deep into sin. The heavenly ruler clearly understood the spiritual message God Almighty was sending. There would be NO firstborn—no first resurrection of the firstborn of Egypt. The first evidence of spiritual strength is the seeding and birthing of children fit for God’s kingdom. The Egyptian leadership refused to repent from sin, hence, their kingdom was doomed; no one was spiritually fit for God’s kingdom. This has always been a spiritual battle. “And smote all the firstborn in Egypt, the first issue of their virility in the tents of Ham” (Psalm 78:51).
8. The people of Israel are God’s firstborn. “Then you shall say to Pharaoh, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Israel is My son, My firstborn”’” (Exodus 4:22). God made it clear to both the earthly and heavenly leaders of Egypt that the people of Israel will be the first resurrection of mortals. God’s leadership, the work of His hands, will transform wayward people into humble God-fearing and God-loving people.
9. God Almighty initiated and controlled the plagues on Egypt. He determined what it will be and each one represented their sins. He was both warning and urging them to repent both leaders: in heaven and on earth.
10. The story of the plagues on Egypt details a spiritual battle where the God of the Hebrews gave sons of God from His Heavenly Court rulership over the nations. The task was to teach the nations about God’s laws and His ways. Each heavenly ruler failed. The God of the Hebrews judged and sentenced them because He and only He is Supreme.
The last of the ten plagues was the most significant of all the plagues. It declared the death of the firstborn sons if the blood of a lamb without blemish was not brushed on the door posts of their home. All the Israelites and the Egyptians who followed Moses instructions protected their firstborn sons, but the families who were not protected exposed their firstborn sons to the sword of the death angel. Thousands died and Egypt wept, defenceless, anxious and fearful knowing the inability of their gods to protect them.
THE GREAT PASSOVER
On that night, that single event prophesied God’s knowledge of the success of His beloved Son’s sacrifice—His Son’s death on the cross and the saving of mankind. One day a year, every year, a holy remembrance takes place on the Passover. God’s people humble themselves, confirm their acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice and eat unleavened bread symbolizing the purging of sin out of their lives.
On that night, that single event prophesied the death angel passing over the homes that had the blood of the Lamb without blemish brushed on their door posts saving their firstborn sons. This action prophesied the protection of God’s firstborn, the men and women in the first resurrection. These are the saints throughout the ages who died anticipating their resurrection and those who are alive at the return of Christ. They are the Church of the Firstborn who are assured members in heaven.
“But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, to the general assembly and Church of the Firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect” (Hebrews 12:22-23).
THE CHURCH OF THE FIRSTBORN
The Church of the Firstborn in the latter days include known groups. The 144,000 from twelve tribes of Israel and the Philadelphia group who have been awarded their crown.
“I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown” (Revelation 3:11). What they have assures them the first resurrection; they belong to the Church of the Firstborn.
“Then I looked, and behold, the Lamb was standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His name and the name of His Father written on their foreheads” (Revelation 14:1).
Standing with Christ are the saints resurrected and those alive from the twelve tribes of Israel—the Church of the Firstborn—blameless—who speak no lies and like the group from the Philadelphia church, they have written on them: Christ’s new name, the name of Almighty God and identified as the New Jerusalem (Revelation 3:12). “The one who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of My God, and he will never again leave it. Upon him I will write the name of My God, and the name of the city of My God (the new Jerusalem that comes down out of heaven from My God), and My new name.”
The first resurrection is the better resurrection. It comprises of people devoted to serving God and following Christ wherever he goes. They are the overcomers, Christ’s bride who will rule with him.
Known to the God of the Hebrews before the creation of mankind was the outcome of the great battle in heaven. From out of the second creation, mortals on earth, a church would rise up comprised of unwavering saints dedicated to righteousness and God’s law. They are God’s firstborn that He revealed He would protect and resurrect them. They would go unscathed by the death angel and be the first mortals in eternity.
Such is the story of the Passover remembered annually on only ONE day every year. The sacrifice of Jesus Christ will give God’s firstborn a double blessing and the inheritance of rulership in God’s holy, royal, ruling family mirrored in God’s command to the ancient Israelites to give the firstborn son a double portion of the family inheritance. The rest of mankind will be part of the second resurrection on Judgement Day.
THE DOUBLE PORTION
God loves His people. He longs to see them return to Him. On that day after Jacob’s trouble, His people will repent, the remnant, and God will bless them with a double portion. He will identify to all the nations on earth that His repentant people remain the first born of all nations.
“Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion; instead of dishonor they shall rejoice in their lot; therefore, in their land they shall possess a double portion; they shall have everlasting joy” (Isaiah 61:7).
Zechariah records God’s promise to the repentant remnant of Israel who come out of captivity. He blesses them as he would a firstborn, promising them the restoration of twice as much. In fact, they will be the first kingdom devoted to God in the Millennium. “I will free your prisoners from the waterless pit Return to your fortress, O prisoners of hope; even now I announce that I will restore twice as much to you” (Zechariah 9:11b-12).
At the end of Job’s suffering, when he came to know God, he was blessed with a double portion. God identified Job as a firstborn. “And the LORD restored the fortunes of Job, when he had prayed for his friends. And the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before” (Job 42:10).
Most importantly, Jesus Christ is identified as the firstborn over all creation; he is King of kings and Lord of lords. He rules over two realms; he holds two positions: king and high priest. Indeed, he is the blessed and rightful heir of all things. “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation” (Colossians 1:15).
The keeping of the Passover is a confirmation of faithfulness and gratitude for God’s grace and immense generosity. It is a remembrance of Christ’s sacrifice and his love for mankind. It kindles excitement and longing for the establishment of God’s Kingdom on earth. It is an awesome day for mankind, a day to be remembered forever.
This study is a journey deep into forgotten history. It is an honest look at Satan’s use of his deceptive power over people. It is an alert for prayer beseeching Almighty God to release His people from Satan’s amnesic spell, help them remember their historical journeys over time and see their only enemies for who they are and what they have become.
FORGOTTEN HISTORY HOLDS THE KEY TO KNOWING OUR ONLY ENEMIES
The ancient Israelites followed Moses out of Egypt into the desert and finally, Joshua led them into the promised, Holy Land. These people tried Moses and Almighty God many times, despite God’s incredible miracles they witnessed daily. Prior to Moses’ death, he called all of these people before him, knowing they will wander away from God’s way into utter corruption. “In days to come, disaster will fall upon you because you will do evil in the sight of the LORD and provoke Him to anger by what your hands have made” (Deuteronomy 31:29). He wrote a historical and a foretelling song about them for the people to sing, to memorize and to internalize. He knew their fall-back into wickedness would happen, their history would be forgotten, God’s word would be ignored, God’s wrath would be decreed and, in their suffering, and only then, would they awaken out of their corruption and call out to their God for forgiveness and redemption.
Recorded in the Song of Moses is the forgotten history of Almighty God declaring His kingship over the children of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. They became His people on that day when the nations of the world received heavenly kings’ rulership over them. “When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance [heavenly rulers], when he divided all mankind [at the time of Babel], he set up the boundaries for the peoples according to the number in His heavenly court [who were given rulership over the people that were then separated into different groups]. For the LORD’s portion is His people, Jacob His allotted inheritance [His rulership] (Deuteronomy 32:8-9).
The nations of the world ALL have records of gods ruling over them. They speak of gods and demi-gods and goddesses, with different powers over the weather, the sea, the land and the people. But, over time this history became mythicized. Satan did not want mankind to remember their only enemies. He wanted them to look to one another as their enemies.
How can 21st century mankind prove the unseen, the silent, the hidden except that these entities be forced into the open. Until then, strange events, testimonies, and conspiracy theories point to their existence, but the Bible declares the reality of the unseen and identifies who they are and what they have become.
THE MYSTERY OF THE STATUE RECORDED IN DANIEL
The Book of Daniel records a towering statue with a head of gold, the breast and arms of silver, belly and thighs of brass, legs of iron and toes of iron and clay. This statue is identified with nations on earth. While the heavenly rulers over these nations are being conquered by God one by one, the statue remains complete and standing upright until Christ, imaged as the rock “not made from human hands”, destroys it completely, “leaving no trace” (Daniel 2:35). This statue remains complete and upright because the spiritual rulers over the nations on earth remain on their thrones until the final ten kings receive their promised rulership. They rule for “one hour” then, Christ returns and destroys their ungodly government and the statue crumbles into fine dust and blown away.
THE BEASTS SEEN BY DANIEL
The different body parts of the statue in Daniel are partnered with beasts. The head of gold reflects the precious God-fearing heart of King Nebuchadnezzar and is partnered with what Daniel described as a lion with wings of an eagle whose wings were torn off “and it was lifted from the ground so that it stood on two feet like a man, and the heart of a man was given to it” (Daniel 7:4). This heavenly ruler became a beast when he chose to rebel against God Almighty.
A lion is symbolic of royalty. In this case, the heavenly ruler was a member of God’s royal ruling family. Having wings of an eagle indicates a spiritual being and having a position within God’s government is represented in the eagle. The use of this imagery can be found in scriptures recorded by Ezekiel. “A great eagle with powerful wings, long feathers and full plumage of varied colors [an eternal being identified as the heavenly prince over Babylon] came to Lebanon [the name of God’s heavenly court]. Taking hold of the top of a cedar [the king of Judah], he broke off its topmost shoot and carried it away to the land of merchants [Babylon], where he planted it in a city of traders [Babylon]” (Ezekiel 17:2-4).
God provided Ezekiel with the meaning of this allegory. “Say to this rebellious people, ‘Do you not know what these things mean?’ Say to them: ‘The king of Babylon [described as a great eagle] went to Jerusalem and carried off her king and her nobles, bringing them back with him to Babylon’” (Ezekiel 17:12). God was prophesying the defeat of the kingdom of Judah that He would command. The heavenly ruler over Babylon [the great eagle with powerful wings] came to God’s headquarters [called Lebanon] to fulfill God’s commands. Babylon is seen today by Christians as the home of the wicked great harlot, but at the time of the house of Judah’s captivity, the heavenly ruler over this kingdom was likely still loyal to Almighty God. The heavenly ruler over Babylon was not the only ruler described as a great eagle.
Another “great eagle” is described in Ezekiel 17:7. It tells the story of the house of Judah seeking refuge from Egypt. This heavenly ruler over Egypt was at one time also loyal to Almighty God. “Which of the trees of Eden [leaders in God’s heavenly family] can be compared to you in splendor and majesty?” God praised this heavenly ruler over Egypt and then prophesied, “Yet you, too, will be brought down with the trees of Eden [leaders in God’s heavenly family] to the earth below; you will lie among the uncircumcised [wicked], with those killed by the sword. This is Pharaoh and all his hordes” (Ezekiel 31:18).
The leaders of Judah were plotting their way out of their treaty and servitude to Babylon by way of an alliance with Egypt and the support of their vast military strength. They knew they were seeking help from the god of Egypt thinking this god had power to override the commands of their God. Almighty God responded, “Even if it [the house of Judah] is transplanted [relocated], will it thrive? Will it not wither completely when the east wind [God Almighty] strikes it—wither away in the plot where it grew?” (Ezekiel 17:10)
The beast partnered with Babylon, the head of the statue, is imaged as a lion. This lion was lifted up from the ground and stood on two feet like a man and given the heart of a man. This change from his natural behaviour likely reflects his change from God’s Holy Spirit filled thinking to the conniving actions and corrupt behaviour of carnal mankind.
The use of earthly descriptors provides mortals with a level of understanding of the unseen world in heaven. Resurrected sons of God are portrayed by Isaiah as having the wings of eagles. “But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).
The great statue is a timeline of rulers. The breast and arms of silver of the images the precious God-fearing heart of King Cyrus. The beast partnered with the Medo-Persian empire recorded by Daniel was like a bear. “It was raised up on one of its sides, and it had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth” (Daniel 7:5).
The heavenly ruler of this kingdom rebelled early upon receiving his inheritance—his rulership over the Medes and Persians. His aggression is revealed when Daniel beseeched God in prayer. The angel Gabriel was captured by the prince over the Medo-Persian empire and delayed from giving Daniel God’s message until he was rescued by Michael the Archangel. “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia” (Daniel 10:12-13). Before the Medo-Persian empire on earth rose up to conquer Babylon, the heavenly ruler of the Medo-Persians was already at war against Almighty God. Still, within that empire, God prophesied that a mortal ruler, King Cyrus, in their time of glory would recognize Almighty God as the Supreme God and allow the house of Judah to return to their land and rebuild.
The third beast partnered with the kingdom represented as the belly and thighs was made of bronze. A significant change in theological values is noted. No longer were the kingdoms on earth valuing spiritual strength, rather through their human military strength, crafty war tactics and strategies, their manmade weapons and vast armies was their focus. The Greek empire rose up and overthrew the Medo-Persian empire. They continued to conquer, swiftly and decisively, until Alexander the Great died suddenly and empire was divided into four dominions.
The beastly heavenly ruler over Greece looked like a leopard. “And on its back, it had four wings like those of a bird, but not specifically an eagle. This beast had 4 heads, and it was given authority to rule” (Daniel 7:6). All authority to rule comes from God. The strength of a leopard is its ability to mobilize quickly and with its powerful shoulders it has the unique ability to climb trees and to leap and jump to significant heights both vertically and horizontally. The coat of a cat provides a powerful elusive cover. The four heads of this beast image the division of the kingdom at the death of Alexander the Great. The four dominions over time became two: the north and the south imaged in the two legs of iron. The Romans adopted the gods of the Greeks, hence the image continues as the leaders and people acknowledge gods and goddesses as their superiors.
Moving down the statue, the timeline reveals its coming destruction in the last days. The final beast appears at the very end of this evil age in the image of toes of iron and clay. It is partnered with the earthly leaders from all over the world. Despite the fragility of the mix, this final raging force will be fighting for survival. This is their last chance and they will fight to the death. Daniel describes this beast as terrifying, frightening and very powerful. There is no animal on earth that can represent this rogue heavenly coalition. It is a terrifying coalition of evil forces thrust into the open for all of mankind to see. They fight among themselves and three of the ten rulers are overthrown. The remaining seven rulers submit to a contemptable and dreadful heavenly ruler who rises up quickly to take full control.
This wicked heavenly leader wars against “the host in heaven” and throws some of the starry host down to earth, trampling on them (Daniel 8:10). His goal is to overthrow Jesus Christ and then Almighty God. He sets himself up as an equal to the King of kings and Lord of lords [the great Prince of the host] and for a time it is allowed to usurp authority as Almighty God tests the creation in heaven. This “little horn” disgraces Christ’s sanctuary in heaven and discredits the word of God. This leader is not mortal. He enters into the highest heavens. “It grew until it reached the host of the heavens, and it threw some of the starry host down to the earth and trampled on them” (Daniel 8:10). The witness of this event will bring a terrifying realization to people on earth as this great battle in heaven is brought down to earth.
No longer will the existence of gods be mythicized.
“This king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of thing against the God of gods” (Daniel 11:36). No mortal can exalt himself above every heavenly god. Nor can mortals enter into the heavens, the abode of God and the angels. The battle of Almighty God against the rogue gods will be visible on earth after Satan is thrown out of heaven with his followers.
THE BEAST FROM OUT OF THE BOTTOMLESS PIT
Mortals are not sentenced to the bottomless pit. "And when they [the two witnesses] shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them" (Revelation 11:7).
The beast from the bottomless pit is the beast from out of the sea (Revelation 13:1). The use of the descriptor of the “sea” is an image for the place of Wickedness. When God creates the new heaven and new earth, there will be no sea [no home for Wickedness] (Revelation 21:1). The bottomless pit is the descriptor for all of the sentenced rogue fallen angels.
The pit lies below the surface of the earth. It is the lowest place in hell barred with a lattice-covered ingress. To be sentenced to the pit is a mark of great shame. There, rogue entities and darkened souls are imprisoned. They are unrepentant wicked heavenly rulers, rogue heavenly princes, authorities and powers from the heavenly realm. The stony pit where the pyre is deep and wide is saved for them.
Satan whose heavenly dominion is named Tyre will also be imprisoned in the pit. “I will send you [Tyre] to the pit to join those who descended there long ago. Your city will lie in ruins, buried beneath the earth, like those in the pit who have entered the world of the dead. You will have no place of respect here in the land of the living. I will bring you to a horrible end and you will be no more” (Ezekiel 26:20-21).
In the pit, fallen and overthrown heavenly rulers are imprisoned. There, they are deteriorating slowly, changing into deformed creatures barely recognizable from their original glorious state. These spiritual beings appear to look like locusts and horses, wearing crowns that are twisted and deformed, barely recognizable from the outward growth of their skull. They have human faces framed with long hair like a woman (Revelation 9:7-8). Their long
hair like a woman is symbolic of having a ruler over them. It is the same symbolism of God’s command for women to keep their hair long as they represent the church with Christ as their head, their King. These fallen angels, too have a king reigning over them whose name is Abaddon in Hebrew and Apollyon in Greek. They will come out of the Abyss (Revelation 9:11).
The underground prison of the wicked heavenly beings and God will also confine the wicked leaders on earth while waiting for judgement. “In that day the LORD will punish the powers in the heavens above and the kings on the earth below. They will be herded together, like prisoners gathered in the pit; they shall be shut up in the prison and punished after many days” (Isaiah 24:22).
Satan will join this motley band of rebels. He will be captured and brought down into pit. His attempt to rise to the very top will fail. “You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain, I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’ But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit” (Isaiah 14:13-15).
The beast from out of the pit will ally with the 10 kings given rulership for “one hour” and they will war against the saints and conquer them in the last-days battle. God allows their defeat as it will strengthen them spiritually. Daniel recorded, “Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotlessuntil the time of the end, for it will come at the appointed time (Daniel 11:35).
God Almighty is perfecting the saints and bringing His people and all mankind into repentance. His plan cannot be thwarted. “Authority was given to the beast to make war against the saints and conquer them” (Revelation 13:7). This same event is recorded in Daniel. “The fourth beast made war against the saints and overpowered them” (Daniel 7:21).
NO MORTAL HAS BEEN PROMISED A KINGDOM
The beast from out of the Abyss rules initially with ten kings who were promised a kingdom. God’s promise to these heavenly kings will be fulfilled but for one hour.
“The ten horns you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but who for one hour will receive authority as kings along with the beast" (Revelation 17:12).
Daniel recorded the same message. “The ten horns are ten kings who will come from this kingdom. After them another king will arise, different from the earlier ones, he will subdue three kings. He will speak against the Most High and oppress his saints and try to change the set times and the law. The saints will be handed over to him for a time, times and half a time” (Daniel 7:24).
When God divided the people, set their boundaries and gave them a heavenly ruler at the time, He took the descendants of Jacob under His rulership. At that time, ten members of His Holy Heavenly Court did not get their kingship; their rulership was saved for the last days. The final beast out of the Abyss is a coalition of overthrown heavenly rulers released for a time. That beastly coalition is crowned with ten horns [kings] and consumed by a raging temper to destroy every man, woman and child on earth. In their view, God’s creation on earth is vile and despicable. This beast will be so powerful, so ruthless and supreme that “the whole world will be astonished and follow the beast. Men will worship the dragon [Satan] because he will give authority to the beast, and they will also worship the beast and ask, “Who is like the beast? Who can made war against it?” (Revelation 13:3-4)
The world will surrender to this beast. It is not mortal. If it were, they would be able to make war against it.
When the nations are gathered at Armageddon, their drive to war against Almighty God will come directly from the influence of the three evil spirits that come out of the mouth of Satan, the beast and the false prophet (Revelation 16:13). Traditional theological thought often interprets the beast as a ten-nation coalition from the nations on earth, but this is not so. The beast is a coalition of fallen, wicked angels who are given power and authority to rule.
The nations of the earth will be deceived and led astray by the exchange of truth for lies that began with the great harlot. They will surrender to Satan and the beast and serve them, accepting their rule as it was in the days of Noah, so will it be again.
When Christ returns, he will capture the beast and the false prophet and they will be thrown alive in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is not the fate of the nations on earth. The inhabitants on earth who take the mark of the beast and worship the image are a menacing group from the beginning. Their names were not written in the book of life from the creation of the world and they are immediately killed by the sword of Jesus Christ. This menacing group are the children of Satan seeded during the night and recorded in Matthew 13 in the parable of the wheat and weeds. These “weeds” will be pulled up and burned upon Christ’s return.
The nations of the world will be judged. The sheep will be separated from the goats and judgement will be made according to the actions of the people recorded in the books.
THE ONLY ENEMY OF MANKIND
Mankind is not fighting against flesh and blood. Their only enemy are the wicked heavenly angels who have power and authority (Ephesians 6:12). Corrupt and wicked mortals cannot rob mankind of their salvation, but wicked rogue fallen rulers with great power can. They can sway the weak to follow them into the final judgement and destruction.
That is why the Apostle Paul urges Christians to put on the full armour of God (Ephesians 6:13-18):
· Belt of truth – test and prove information
· Breastplate of righteousness – live God’s way
· Run to peace – do not provoke anger, seek peaceful resolutions quickly
· Shield of faith – believe and trust God
· Helmet of salvation – remember God’s promise of eternal life
· Sword of the Spirit is the word of God – know God’s word and live His way
· Pray in the Spirit – for yourself to remain alert and the saints who are prime targets.
Jude recognized menacing people among God’s repentant people. “Yet in like manner these people also, relying on their dreams, defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme the glorious ones…What sorrow awaits them! For they follow in the footsteps of Cain, who killed his brother. Like Balaam, they deceive people for money. And like Korah, they perish in their rebellion… They are like wild waves of the sea, churning up their own shameful deeds like dirty foam; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of darkness has been reserved forever” (Jude 1:8, 11, 13).
The Apostle Peter also saw these same bad-behaving people creep in and mingle among Christians. “The harm they will suffer is the wages of their wickedness. They consider it a pleasure to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deception as they feast with you. Their eyes are full of adultery; their desire for sin is never satisfied; they seduce the unstable. They are accursed children with hearts trained in greed. They have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam son of Beor, who loved the wages of wickedness” II Peter 2:13-15).
Jude does not declare these people as the enemy, rather, he says, “And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives” (Jude 1:22-23).
God will bring judgement onto the fallen angels and corrupted people. Spiritual beings can be destroyed. Satan will be reduced to a dying mortal before he is destroyed. God said, “You said in your heart… ‘I will make myself like the Most High.’ But he will be captured and thrown into the lowest part of the pit saved for the shamed. God continued, “Those who see you stare at you, they ponder your fate: ‘Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble, the man who made the world a desert [ungodly place], who overthrew its cities and would not let his captives go home?’” (Isaiah 14:15-17)
Ezekiel also recorded the destruction of Satan. “Your heart grew proud of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor; so I cast you to the earth; I made you a spectacle before kings. By the multitude of your iniquities and the dishonesty of your trading you have profaned your sanctuaries. So I made fire come from within you, and it consumed you. I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the eyes of all who saw you. All the nations who know you are appalled over you. You have come to a horrible end and will be no more’” (Ezekiel 28:17-19).
After the Great Judgement is complete, God will destroy unrepentant mortals and wicked heavenly beings. Together, they will be consumed by fire along with everything in the heavens and on earth. Everything and everyone will melt. The spiritual creation can be destroyed completely and forever.
King David saw the wicked ways of the nations taught to them and enforced upon them by their rogue heavenly rulers. He beseeched God to take back the authority over the nations and dethrone these wicked heavenly angels. God responded to King David when He foretold the fate of these fallen angels. Speaking directly to these fallen angels, God Almighty said, ‘You are gods; you are all sons of the Most High. But like mortals you will die, and like rulers you will fall’” (Psalm 82:6-7).
Not only will the wicked spiritual beings and mortals be destroyed, but all of the old world in heaven and on earth. God Almighty, the Great Creator will start anew. “But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar, the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and its works will be laid bare. Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, as you anticipate and hasten the coming of the day of God, when the heavens will be destroyed by fire and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with God’s promise, we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells (II Peter 3:10-13).
God will create a NEW heaven and a NEW earth for the righteous in His holy, royal, ruling family. And there will be no home for wickedness; there will be “no sea”. “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea” (Revelation 21:1). God’s use of the imagery of the sea was intentional to illustrate the power of the fallen angels and their anger and rage shown in the waves as they crash against the shoreline. Jesus silenced the waters many times during his ministry on earth.
LOVE ONE ANOTHER
Satan is like a roaring lion seeking who can devour (I Peter 5:8). The wicked spirit beings are raging lunatics. They ignite hatred, conjure up chaos, and revel in destruction. God Almighty is a God of order, peace and love. The command He gives to mankind is to love one another.
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8).
“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” (John 15:12).
How can love be expressed if judgement is made and hatred followed?
LOVE YOUR ENEMIES
God is calling everyone in His time. It is important of those called by God to extend patient endurance for those still not yet called. “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous” (Matthew 5:44-45).
GOD WANTS TO SAVE ALL OF MANKIND
“This is good and pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (I Timothy 2:3-4).
It distresses God to end the lives of His creation. “Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Lord GOD. Wouldn't I prefer that he turn from his ways and live?” (Ezekiel 18:23)
To save mankind, God gave His dearly beloved Son to suffer and die. God loves the creation on earth. “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him” (John 3:7).
King David marvelled and said, “When I behold Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place—what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You made him a little lower than the angels; You crowned him with glory and honor. You made him ruler of the works of Your hands; You have placed everything under his feet” (Psalms 8:3-6).
Repentant mankind is destined to fill every position held by the fallen angels. God foresees the repentance of his people and they are a beautiful garden in His eyes.
“The righteous man will flourish like the PALM TREE; he will grow like a CEDAR in Lebanon; planted in the house of the LORD, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, ‘The LORD is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him” (Psalm 92:12-15).
Trees are images of leaders. The palm tree can thrive in the desert because it stores water in the trunk and the fruit that it produces. The palm tree images leaders who remain strong and upright among ungodly people.
Imagery of the great cedars bring an immediate rich visual of the most spectacular trees on earth. They have the unique qualities that mirror the great leaders in God’s headquarters. These tall and grand trees are dimensionally stable with a built-in thermal insulator. With oils that act as natural preservatives, these trees are resistant to bacteria and fungus. To top it off, they release a fresh aroma that deters pests. God is moulding righteousness into mortals and upon their resurrection they will have all of these eternal qualities and superior strength to lead His kingdom in truth, understanding and wisdom of His law and His way. God gave the name of His headquarters in heaven, ‘Lebanon’ to mirror on earth His stately and regal leaders—His pride and joy.
“‘The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,’ declares the LORD… Though in anger I struck you, in favor I will show you compassion… THE GLORY OF LEBANON WILL COME TO YOU, the PINE, the FIR and the CYPRESS together, to adorn the place of my sanctuary and I will glorify the place of my feet… all who despise you will bow down at your feet and will call you The City of the LORD, Zion of the Holy One of Israel” (Isaiah 59:20, 60:10, 60:13, 14).
“How fair are your tents, O Jacob, Your dwellings, O Israel! ‘Like valleys that stretch out, like GARDENS beside the river, like ALOES planted by the LORD, like CEDARS beside the waters” (Numbers 24:5-6).
Countless people from a multitude of nations, tribes, peoples and languages will repent and turn to the Almighty God of Israel. They will receive the great honour of serving in His temple and He will care for them for all eternity.
From the beginning, mankind’s only enemy has been deceitful fallen angels. That condition remains unchanged into the 21st century as the statue of Daniel remains upright until Christ crushes their reign and the statue collapses into fine dust, blown away, never to be seen again.
The great honour for mankind is having God live with them. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:4). “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and He will live with them. They will be His people and He will be their God” (Revelation 21:3).
LIKE A CHILD
So, it begins. Baby steps at first. Establish your footing and reach out. This walk cannot be done alone, take his helping hand.
POOR IN SPIRIT
“Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of God” (Matthew 5:3).
This journey begins with a revolutionary change in understanding. Planet earth fades out of view when all creation is visible. Multi-dimensional worlds filled with life, dominions and kingdoms capture your attention and above all, a throne room surrounded by four living creatures with four heads and bodies covered with eyes standing at four corners before the Great Creator.
His voice like a trumpet commands and it happens. He speaks and his creation obeys. He whispers and His subjects worship Him. He leans back and earth appears; there He rests His feet.
The poor in spirit recognize their Grand Creator, His wonder and greatness. They feel their utter spiritual bankruptcy before Him and bend their knee in reverence.
Jesus Christ has paved their way onto the journey into life, eternal. Through him, the journey can be made, the obstacles overcome, the barriers torn down and the way made straight.
“Jesus said, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’” (John 14:6).
More than that, it is Christ living in you that makes the journey into life, eternal complete.
“I am crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself up for me”(Galatians 2:20).
Allow Christ to live in you. The journey into life, eternal is a one of hope, adventure, relentless determination, and refreshing joy bursting out of darkness into full light.
The poor in spirit depend on Almighty God for His guidance in knowledge, wisdom and understanding. The completion of this lap of the journey is a confirmation of becoming a royal member in the eternal God-Ruling Family. The transformation into an eternal body will not change the realization of the poor in spirit for the Great Creator. Knowing Almighty God is a wonder and an exhilarating energy that humbles the created to honour, revere and pledge their loyalty to and love for Him for all eternity.
In awe, they come before the Great Shepherd, their Heavenly Father who responds by giving them His kingdom: leadership and influence within God’s eternal, limitless expanse that controls and governs all of His creation. For each of the beatitudes of Matthew 5, Jesus revealed the priceless reward: a honoured position, an envied role, a rich opportunity. Those who mourn will receive the richest of opportunities.
THOSE WHO MOURN
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted” (Matthew 5:4).
Jesus is not referring to depressed people sobbing for their own loss. Those who mourn, deeply regret the entry of sin on earth. They lament their sins, the sins of their people and the sins of the world. They pray for their own forgiveness and the forgiveness of sins of the world who simply do not know what they are doing. They long for the return of Jesus Christ and seek a city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
These people will receive special comfort, not just pardoned for their sins but participation in the healing of mankind. Like Ezekiel who through the power of Almighty God will raise defeated ancient Israel back into physical life, so will those who mourn the spiritual decay of their fellow brothers and sisters. “Then he said to me, ‘Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life… So I prophesied as I was commanded and there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone” (Ezekiel 37:4,7).
Through the power of Almighty God, Ezekiel will command on a wonderful day still in the future for the very dry, lifeless bones to rattle, come together, clothe themselves with flesh and finally breathe. Ezekiel who mourned the decay of all Israel, will be comforted when through God’s power, he resurrects them and hears their repented cry, “Our hope [for eternal life] is gone. We are cut off.”
Ezekiel will then preach to them as he did in their ancient days, “Therefore prophesy and tell them that this is what the Lord GOD says: ‘O My people, I will open your graves and bring you up from them, and I will bring you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put My Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I, the LORD, have spoken, and I will do it, declares the LORD’” (Ezekiel 37:12-14).
Such is the reward of those who mourn because of the spiritual decay of God’s creation on earth. God has promised them special comfort and great honour in the participation of the healing of creation on earth.
A dying planet will seek healing and find it through the God-fearing and God-serving people who have Christ in them doing the work of Almighty God. He desires that everyone repent. He is a gracious God.
“First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgiving be offered for everyone, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good and pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (I Timothy 2:1-5).
“Therefore, the Lord longs to be gracious to you…” (Isaiah 30:18a).
It is not only grace that our loving Father in heaven longs to give, but RULERSHIP in his holy, royal, ruling family. This coronation will be awarded to the meek.
BLESSED ARE THE MEEK
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5).
The meek will rule the earth. Inheritance throughout the Bible is often not fully understood. It is the receiving of the family heritage after death, but the death God Almighty considers is the death of the old, sinful self after repentance and baptism into the birthing of a new person. This new man or woman matures into living the ways of God through the help of God’s Holy Spirit and the entering of Christ in you. The inheritance awarded to these overcomers is eternal rulership in His family kingdom.
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise” (Galatians 3:28-29).
God has given himself an inheritance.
When God gave the members of His heavenly court, rulership over the nations at the time of Babel (Deuteronomy 32:8), He took the descendants of Jacob as His inheritance. “For the LORD’s portion is his people, Jacob his allotted inheritance” (Deuteronomy 32:9). God Almighty declared Himself King over the descendants of Jacob approximately 300 years before Jacob’s grandfather, Abraham was born and called by God.
The meek will rule the earth.
Meekness is a discipled character of servitude who lives in perfect harmony with a mild and gentle spirit that simultaneously does not allow lines to be
crossed, one who is slow to anger, not easily provoked, without compromise and bias, or easily swayed. This individual will inherit, that is, rule the earth.
The rulers in Christ’s Millennial reign and throughout eternity will never compromise God’s laws or His way. They will follow Christ’s instructions carefully and meticulously and shepherd the people in service, kindness, mercy, law-keeping, justice—in complete fullness of righteousness.
At their very core, the meek desire the total care for those under their wings. They do not seek attention, self-glory or power. They are perpetually overlooked and considered insignificant by carnal mankind. But, Almighty God will raise them up and coronate the meek who serve as the servant of all to rule in strength, judging impartially and in justice.
“Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years” (Revelation 20:6).
A great resurrection into immortal bodies is on our near horizon. This journey into life, eternal on earth is the training field for transformation into righteousness—simply living God’s ways of love.
Even the smallest of beginnings are noticed.
Spiritual maturity brings to light the importance of discipline and practice in righteousness.
“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways” (I Corinthians 13:11).
It is time to grow up.
“For everyone who lives on milk is still an infant, inexperienced in the message of righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained their senses to distinguish good from evil” (Hebrews 5:13-14).
The babes in Christ cannot distinguish good from evil. The spiritually mature have trained and seasoned responses to life’s conflicts. They are shrewd and recognize the tactics and playbook of Wickedness. They respond like doves of peace working to understand and resolve issues as well as apply healing remedies.
HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled” (Matthew 5:6).
Hunger is associated with food, the word of God and thirst is associated with water, God’s Holy Spirit. The word of God is personified in Jesus Christ because he has a complete and perfect understanding of God’s instructions. He is flawless in the understanding and application of God’s word.
“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty” (John 6:35).
Following Jesus Christ, allowing him in you, asking him for direction and doing as he instructs brings perfection.
“I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And this bread, which I will give for the life of the world, is My flesh" (John 6:51).
Through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, mankind has an opportunity for life, eternal. Repentance brings God’s grace and baptism God’s Holy Spirit through which sin can be overcome. Jesus Christ is the conduit for mankind to receive God’s word and His Holy Spirit.
“But whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up to eternal life” (John 4:14).
God’s Holy Spirit is inexhaustible. The human spirit is limiting and full of weaknesses. The most righteous of human actions cannot quality for eternal life. “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags…” (Isaiah 64:6). The “filthy rages” Isaiah was referring to are the cloths used during a woman’s menstrual period, which is the physical indication that no conception took place—no life was conceived during that cycle. The most righteousness among mankind can never conceive eternal life through their own works.
The desire for God’s righteousness is a precious love. God has given mankind His commandments and ways and loving Him is the application of this knowledge. The Apostle Paul recorded the key components of the full of armour of God. It comprises of:
· Belt of truth: The belt keeps pants up. Truth stops shameful behaviour.
· Breastplate of righteousness: Vital organs are protected by the breastplate, so righteous actions sustain life.
· Feet that run to peace: No delay or lingering, but an immediate thoughtful response to conflicts while applying an understanding of the issue without compromise, knowledge free of bias or lies and wisdom from God to achieve a fitting resolution.
· Shield of faith: Unwavering belief in God’s promises for Believers regardless of the direction of the world around them.
· Helmet of salvation: Thoughts lead to actions. Guarded thoughts lead to life preserving actions.
· Sword of the Spirit/the word of God: Information is power; God’s word is life, eternal.
· Prayer: The leaders in the community are targeted first and persecuted most often. Pray for them; pray for all Believers and pray for the repentance of all of mankind.
God’s word and His Holy Spirit is the package that brings life, eternal. Those who hunger and thirst for righteousness will be filled; they will reach a complete knowledge and understanding of God’s word and live His ways perfectly.
THOSE WHO ARE MERICFUL
“Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy” (Matthew 5:7).
The merciful understand the frequency of sinning and the ease of falling. They also see the greater picture of fallen man. Their mistakes, along with the many mistakes of all of mankind have polluted earth and caused suffering at all levels for people. Forgiveness of mistakes made, acknowledges the fragility of the human spirit and the absolute need for God’s Holy Spirit. Forgiveness of sin acknowledges self-weakness and self-imperfection.
The merciful pray to God to bring mankind to their knees so that their sins can be forgiven; for sinners simply do not know what they are doing. Satan deceives the whole world and the Great Harlot of Revelation will work her
magic to lure the nations into exchanging God’s grace and the sacrifice of Christ for a false hope that she will wrap in false righteousness.
“And the great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world…” (Revelation 12:9).
The witchery of the Great Harlot will brew a potion that will lure the nations into a massive commercial enterprise that goes beyond trading precious and valuable physical wares to include the spiritual soul of man. “The merchants [wicked facilitators] of the earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their cargoes any more—cargoes of gold… bodies and souls of men” (Revelation 18:13).
Deception, deception, deception is the key trick in Satan’s playbook. “The light of a lamp will never shine in you [Babylon, the Great Harlot] again. The happy voices of brides and grooms will never be heard in you again. For your merchants were the greatest in the world, and you deceived the nations with your sorceries” (Revelation 18:23).
And yet, God longs to give wayward mankind His grace.
Like Almighty God, the merciful want to see everyone repent and become members of God’s holy, royal, ruling family.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By His great mercy He has given us new birthinto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, reserved in heaven for you” (I Peter 1:3-4).
From the big picture view, mankind was attacked at the very beginning by a crafty deceitful being. God foreknew the attack and the outcome. It became a core element of His plan in molding a people who would become a kingdom of priests. Through suffering, mankind will repent and perfection will be achieved. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and yet, all who repent will receive grace and no remembrance of their sins. In addition, they will be blessed and given eternal life in God’s grace-filled, holy, royal family of
The merciful will be like God who said, “No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the LORD,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest,” declares the LORD. “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more” (Jeremiah 31:34).
BLESSED ARE THE PURE IN HEART
“Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God” (Matthew 5:8).
Knowing God is one thing, but seeing God is the ultimate experience. Seeing God is witnessing pure righteousness in action. The depth, height and breadth of every thought in action, every piece of knowledge built to formulate understanding that culminates into wisdom will be seen by the pure in heart because at their very core is an unbreakable relationship with Almighty God, loving Him with all their heart, mind, soul and strength.
Purified by the refiner’s fire, these people are allowing God to mold them. They trust God believing that He will not allow more than what they can bear. They seek His clarity in righteousness, His perfect wisdom, and His enduring love. They will see Him on that day and it will be awesome.
Repentant mankind is destined to be resurrected into the family of Almighty God. King David asked God, “What is mankind that You are mindful of him, human beings that you care for them?” (Psalm 8:4).
The Apostle John pondered the same question. “Behold what manner of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God. And THAT IS WHAT WE ARE! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know Him. Beloved, we are now children of God, and what we will be has not yet been revealed. We know that when Christ appears, we will be like Him, for we will see Him as He is.And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as Christ is pure” (I John 3:1-3).
Jesus works at one with God to ensure the perfection of repentant mankind and the trumpeting of God’s love for them as He loves the Son. “I have given them the glory You gave Me, so that they may be one as We are one—I in them, and You in Me—that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me and LOVED THEM EVEN AS YOU LOVED ME” (John 17:22-23).
How is it that Almighty God can love repentant mankind to the same degree that He loves Jesus Christ?
Job said, “What is man that You should exalt him, that You should set Your heart upon him?” (Job 7:17)
Job added, “Can a man be of use to God? Can even a wise man benefit Him?” (Job 22:2)
The Great Creator is at work building a perfect kingdom comprised of righteous beings from the first creation in heaven and the second creation on earth. The created in heaven and on earth are all children of God of whom He has great plans for their role in His grand design.
“For this reason, I kneel before the Father, from whom HIS WHOLE FAMILY IN HEAVEN AND ON EARTH derives its name” (Ephesians 3:14).
Our Great Creator desires a family—children and a kingdom for His Son. Together, they love the creation in both heaven and on earth. Repentant, humble and serving mankind is of great value to Almighty God. His desire to extend grace to mankind is impatient. “Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; therefore, he will rise up to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!” (Isaiah 30:18)
God describes His family as a garden called Eden. It is a cultivated garden of tall, graceful trees, flowering trees, bushes and flowers each a captivating sight of righteous beauty.
“The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree; he will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. PLANTED IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD, they will flourish in the COURTS OF OUR GOD. They will still yield fruit in old age; They shall be full of sap and very green” (Psalm 92:12-15).
Palm trees can grow and thrive in harsh hot, dry conditions. They are found near water sources and store it in their fruit, roots and trunk to access when the water table is low. Like people filled with God’s Holy Spirit, the palm tree images righteous people who are not corrupted when surrounded by wickedness.
Imagery of the great cedars bring an immediate rich visual of the most spectacular trees on earth. They have the unique qualities that mirror the great leaders in God’s headquarters. These tall and grand trees are dimensionally stable with a built-in thermal insulator. With oils that act as natural preservatives, these trees are resistant to bacteria and fungus. To top it off, they release a fresh aroma that deters pests. God created angels in heaven with all of these eternal qualities and superior strength to lead His kingdom in truth, understanding and wisdom of His law and His way. God uses the name of His headquarters in heaven, ‘Lebanon’ comprised of His stately and regal leaders to mirror Lebanon on earth renown for great cedars.
“I [God] will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like the lily, and he will take root like the cedars of Lebanon. His shoots will sprout, and his beauty will be like the olive tree and his fragrance like the cedars of Lebanon” (Hosea 14:5-6).
God is prophesying about the beauty of His people, all twelve tribes who are twelve nations into the 21stcentury, after they repent, turn to Him and journey into life, eternal along with a countless multitude from the nations of the world. God’s family, headed by Jesus Christ is an image of a majestic, cultivated, exquisite garden.
God is also re-establishing a new government and it is already sprouting. It will grow into a thick forest in Lebanon full of faithful and loyal leaders with many beautiful gifts and wonderful qualities.
“In a very short time, will not Lebanon be turned into a fertile field and the fertile field seem like a forest?” (Isaiah 29:17).
God suffered a painful loss in heaven with the falling of one-third of the angels, but He is re-building and He will fill all of those positions once held by the fallen angels in heaven with repentant, righteous mankind. Creation on earth is destined for great glory. How is that our Great Creator is mindful of us, none other than His great love for us.
Margaret Mead noticed and said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
The few, the remnant of God-fearing and God-serving people on earth will be successful against all odds because their God is the Almighty. He will go out ahead of them and fight against Wickedness with them on the day of Armageddon. The resurrected saints will stand tall with Jesus Christ, King of kings and Lord of lords and fight against and overthrow Satan and his beastly coalition.
The love of righteousness is the key to this unbreakable loyalty for God and His order, His laws and ways.
Peace will come to earth and it begins with the peacemakers.
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God” (Matthew 5:9).
Peacemakers wear the armour of God, running to establish peace and
working to halt division and destruction of relationships. The Apostle Paul said that mankind’s only enemies are rogue, fallen angels who hold very powerful positions. They exist both on earth and in heaven. These rogue evil angels work to destroy mankind and they incite wars and destruction. Knowing the enemy is the first step to overcoming conflict. God identifies those who work to preserve relationships without compromise of truth and righteousness as His children who are in His likeness.
“But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High,because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked” (Luke 6:35).
God desires to extend grace to sinners. He is long-suffering and endures patiently for the repentance of mankind. He has a carefully stepped-out plan. He will give mankind a fair and just opportunity for repentance. Believers need to do the same. God’s plan is still in motion. Not everyone is called to this day. Their time will come, pray that they repent at their time of their calling because God is holding positions of great esteem in His eternal kingdom for them.
Until then, unrepentant mankind is caught in a Satanic spell. They buy into hatred, anger, bloodshed as a means of solving conflicts. Much of the angst in the world comes from lies and a secret plan of destruction of mankind by evil and jealous fallen angels. Truth is suppressed, honesty is ignored and justice is often foregone.
This evil age presents many challenges for the peacemakers who will not compromise or tolerate lies and yet, through the wisdom of God various resolutions can be made and levels of peace achieved even in the most difficult conflicts.
“Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles; or the LORD will see it and be displeased, and turn His anger away from him. Do not fret because of evildoers or be envious of the wicked” (Proverbs 24:17-20).
Help one another freely. Never forget God’s goodness in your calling, else your behaviour would be no better than those still waiting for God’s call that will awaken them to their mistakes. This evil age is difficult for both the called and the uncalled.
THOSE PERSECUTED FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS
“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:10).
The ugliness of sin, the cruelty of wickedness, the destruction of rebellion drives an uncompromising commitment to keep God’s laws and live His way. This life is worth nothing when evil rules and putrefies the air we breathe. The overcomers who love righteousness will never give in to something they detest and God awards their passion and resilience with entry into His holy, royal, ruling kingdom.
To endure persecution for the sake of righteousness requires a deep love for God’s way, an understanding of Wickedness and their sadistic desires to destroy God’s creation on earth, and wisdom to endure suffering for truly it is just a short time compared to timeless eternity.
Like the Son of God, they love righteousness and hate wickedness. “But about the Son He says: ‘Your throne, O God, endures forever and ever, and justice is the scepter of Your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and have hated wickedness; because of this, God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of exultation above Your companions’” (Hebrews 1:8-9).
Both Jesus and Steven prayed to God, “Father forgive them because they do not know what they are doing.” They understood the need to extend grace one to another.
"You have heard that it was said, 'you shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous” (Matthew 5:43-48).
Mankind’s only enemies are evil fallen angels who capture leaders on earth and lure them into wickedness and corruption (Ephesians 6:12). Some have given their soul to Satan in exchange for power, wealth and elitism on earth. Others are bribed and some are simply misguided souls caught up into worldliness.
God allows persecution. He is refining repentant mankind and molding them into a special, new creation that will not collapse under duress or choose to return to wickedness.
“Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (II Timothy 3:12).
Satan hates believers who love God and wait for Him, living on earth as pilgrims seeking a kingdom whose architect is God.
The Apostle Paul reminded the Hebrews, “Remember the early days that you were in the light. In those days, you endured a great conflict in the face of suffering. Sometimes you were publicly exposed to ridicule and persecution; at other times you were partners with those who were so treated. You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, knowing that YOU YOURSELVES HAD A BETTER AND PERMANENT POSSESSION. So, do not throw away your confidence; it holds a great reward. You need to persevere, so that after you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised. For, “In just a little while, He who is coming will come and will not delay. But My righteous one will live by faith; and if he shrinks back, I will take no pleasure in him” (Hebrews 10:32-38).
Don’t shrink back, pray for God’s strength during adversity; He gives generously.
Mankind is not the enemy we battle against.
THOSE INSULTED, PERSECUTED AND MALIGNED BECAUSE OF CHRIST
“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in this same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (Matthew 5:11-12).
To suffer with Christ by Wickedness, is the least Believers can endure in gratitude to Christ’s great sacrifice in saving mankind. This type of suffering tests faith, fortifies your position and binds like minds together. It cements loyalty and intensifies reverence for our loving God.
It opens the door into seeing the greater plan that God engineered before creation and for these people who are suffering because they are listening to the fullest, seeing in vivid detail and fortifying an unbreakable and intimate relationship with the Great Creator, Almighty God and His Son, our humble Saviour.
Enduring these types of attacks takes an understanding of the great battle at play. Some of the most powerful angles, sons in God’s family given great authority are at war against God and have been warring against Him before the creation of mankind on earth. Satan was ready and waiting.
These fallen angels will fight until they are destroyed. They have fought to seize God’s kingdom for themselves. Daniel recorded their sinisterly plans. Two kings battle against each other: the king of the north and the king of the south. Out of direct view from earth, these rogue heavenly kings will not concede. The reign of the kings of the north will end with a contemptible leader who is not a member of the royal line. This king “will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place. He will show no regard for the gods of his fathers or for the one desired of women [Christ], nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all” (Daniel 11:36-37). This is not a mortal king.
This king is described through God’s imagery as the “little horn” that rises up and overthrows three existing kings imaged as “horns”. “Out of one of them came another horn, which started small but grew in power to the south and to the east and toward the Beautiful Land. It grew until it reached the host of the heavens, and it threw some of the starry host [angels in heaven] down to the earth and trampled on them” (Daniel 8:10). This “little horn” is active in heaven and on earth during this time.
“It set itself up to be as great as the Prince of host [Jesus Christ]; it took away the daily sacrifice from him, and the place of his sanctuary was brought low” (Daniel 8:11).
Judgement will come upon this “little horn” before he is destroyed. His actions against Jesus Christ in heaven and the degradation of his sanctuary is temporary and allowed as God gathers evidence against him.
The “little horn” will wage war against the saints and succeed for a time, times and half a time. Then Almighty God will end the persecution. He will set up His court and award the kingdom to the persecuted saints. They, together with Jesus Christ, will be given God’s kingdom. “The court will set, and his power will be taken away and completely destroyed forever. Then the sovereignty, power and greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be handed over to the saints, the people of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom and all rulers will worship and obey him. THIS IS THE END OF THE MATTER” (Daniel 7:26-28a).
God Almighty brings the closure of the matter. He is in full control.
This is why Believers are persecuted because of Christ. These rogue heavenly rulers despise Jesus Christ and will fight to the death to take God’s kingdom by force. Those who follow Christ are hated for their allegiance to Almighty God and Jesus Christ.
THE BLESSED, THEIR HONOUR AND JOY
The Apostle James gave us visibility into God’s wisdom. It corresponds to Jesus’ promise of blessings for those who apply it. “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving,considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere” (James 3:17).
Mankind’s journey on earth could be summed up as the handiwork of Almighty God molding a fleshly creation into spiritual perfection. In so doing, they come to recognize their insignificance compared to the Great Creator, their vulnerability and need to put their complete trust in Him who is perfection. They grow to understand the magnitude of their Great Creator and hold this Being in great esteem, loving Him with all their heart, mind, soul and strength.
They are captivated by His word and crave the outpouring of His Holy Spirit. As their spiritual growth increases, heavenly wisdom opens her heart to reveal the vastness of God’s love, and finally they see God in His full glory and they feel completeness. God’s plan is still in motion. Wait for God to fulfill His plan. Let Him take pleasure in the progress of His handiwork and rejoice with Him.
Our journey into perfection begins with the recognition of being utterly spiritually bankrupt before God and is completed by being abundantly spiritually rich in exercising the greatest form of love: standing strong during times of persecution, being prepared to lay down your life for God’s truth and remaining faithful to Him, loyal and devoted to His law, His ways, and His righteousness.
The blessings that will be given upon completing the race will be bountiful happiness and eternal peace.
Live God’s way and be the light in the darkness, like the lighthouse warning the seafarers of dangers. Stand tall and show mankind the way to Almighty God and His righteousness, else darkness will continue to reign and they will remain miserable, suffering in their sin.
The Beatitudes of Matthew 5 identify specific attributes of spiritual growth on the journey into life, eternal. Transformation out of the spirit of man into God’s Holy Spirit to live God’s way through Christ, His Word—the Expert of His word, will lead repentant mankind into perfection.
“Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect”
“In all their suffering he also suffered, and he personally rescued them. In his love and mercy, he redeemed them. He lifted them up and carried them through all the years” (Isaiah 63:9).
God our Father in heaven, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob feels our pain and He weeps when His children die spiritually.
Hidden in God’s multi-dimensional mastery of writing is a story of great sorrow and suffering. Seldom read or understood is the historical record of the complete fall of God’s heavenly court. Every member small and great fell from righteousness to ally with Wickedness. Though foreknown, on the day the great fall took place, God wept bitterly for He loves His creation in both heaven and on earth.
The historical record of this painful and dark event is recorded in Ezekiel 31. God begins the story warning the heavenly ruler over Egypt that his fall from righteousness is coming. He urges this heavenly ruler to consider the most notorious leader in His heavenly court, the heavenly ruler over Assyria. That ruler, God describes as a great cedar. The use of the imagery of a cedar is to provide the creation on earth with an image they understand. Imagery of the great cedars bring an immediate rich visual of the most spectacular trees on earth. These tall and grand trees are dimensionally stable with a built-in thermal insulator. With oils that act as natural preservatives, these trees are resistant to bacteria and fungus. To top it off, they release a fresh aroma that deters pests. God created sons in heaven with all of these eternal qualities and superior strength to lead His kingdom in truth, understanding and wisdom of His law and His way. God gave the name of His headquarters in heaven, ‘Lebanon’ to mirror on earth His stately and regal leaders—a pride and joy.
The heavenly ruler who received the nation of Assyria as an inheritance (Deuteronomy 32:8) was envied by all the leaders in God’s family (Eden) (Ezekiel 31:9) and it was God who made this leader beautiful; He nourished it with abundant waters [His Holy Spirit] from the deep springs (Ezekiel 31:4). But soon after receiving his rulership over Assyria, he grew proud and arrogant due to his great height, the power he had acquired (Ezekiel 31:10). He, like Satan who had grown proud and arrogant over his beauty, fell from righteousness and humility. God loved this heavenly ruler and in great distress He was forced to hold back His Holy Spirit and watch this leader die spiritually, and He wept.
“On the day it was brought down to the grave, I covered the deep springs with mourning for it; I held back its streams, and its abundant waters were restrained. Because of it, I clothed Lebanon with gloom… Then all the trees of Eden, the choicest and best of Lebanon, all the trees that were well-watered, were consoled in the earth below” (Ezekiel 31:15-16).
All of the members of God’s heavenly court, the sons given an abundant flow of His Holy Spirit, fell out of righteousness and God overthrew them and imprisoned them in the Abyss [the Pit, inside the earth].
God Almighty loves, cares and dearly protects those who serve Him. He feels their distress when they are suffering and He suffers intensely when His children die.
There is a principle recorded in Matthew 25:40 that states as you treat the least of God’s children you have done to the King [of kings], Jesus Christ and in turn God our Father in heaven.
“And the King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of Mine, you did for Me.’”
Jesus Christ is the conduit for all of mankind. He bought and paid for their lives and now, only through him, access to Almighty God is possible.
Christ is the lamp, the mechanism of which God Almighty’s burning glory flows.
“I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp” (Revelation 21:22-23).
The treatment of those considered vulnerable members of God’s family is felt by Jesus Christ and continues up to God Almighty.
“Whoever oppresses the poor taunts their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors Him” (Proverbs 14:31).
“Kindness to the poor is a loan to the LORD, and He will repay the lender” (Proverbs 19:17).
A king from the house of Judah, upon his resurrection, will testify to the pain a father feels to witness the torturous deaths of his sons. King Zedekiah is that father.
“The Chaldeans seized the king and brought him up to the king of Babylon at
Riblah, where they pronounced judgment on him. And they slaughtered the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes. Then they put out his eyes, bound him with bronze shackles, and took him to Babylon” (II Kings 25:6-7).
The witness of the deaths of his sons were the last visual memories of King Zedekiah. A loving father feels their suffering. Almighty God scanned the face of the earth and likens His sacrificing love for His children to a loving and vulnerable mother.
“Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you” (Isaiah 49:15).
God, our Father in heaven, loves His children and desires that nobody is lost and that everyone enters into His kingdom. This great love for all of mankind is demonstrated in the action of allowing His unique Son, the Son through whom all creation in heaven and earth was made, to suffer and die. God Almighty felt the suffering of His beloved Son as intensely as Christ. King Zedekiah will testify to that along with every loving mother.
To the house of Judah who rejected this Son and initiated the scourging and crucifixion, our Father will say, “As much as your scourged and crucified the Son of God, you scourged and crucified Me.”
Still in the future, these words will sound and then the house of Judah will awaken to their darkest fear and weep bitterly. God will apply His principle of love. “They will look on me, the one they have pierced” (Zechariah 12:10) and they will weep bitterly. Truly, as they pierced the Son of God sent to earth to heal and save, they pierced the God the Father of whom they have long claimed to love and worship. God’s principle of love is to treat others the way you want to be treated because nobody hates himself/herself. “Indeed, no one ever hated his own body, but he nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church” (Ephesians 5:29). Those who sacrifice for others feel their suffering and give to those in need. They will be remembered by God and blessed for it. God’s principle of love is rewarding. Those who are willing to die to save others fulfill in full the meaning of God’s love. Through suffering, God’s circle of love brings in everyone who loves one another and they all become ONE. The lines distinguishing one from the another become blurred because the whole body of many become so tightly unified by speaking the same thing, behaving and living the same way.
A time is coming soon when God’s great love will flow out like a rushing river over two broken houses. The house of Judah will receive grace. “I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication” and all of the house of Israel will learn that they are again part of the covenant family and are indeed loved by God.
“At that time, I will plant a crop of Israelites and raise them for myself. I will show love to those I called ‘Not loved.’ And to those I called ‘Not my people,’ I will say, ‘Now you are my people.’ And they will reply, ‘You are our God!’” (Hosea 2:23)
At that time, God’s enduring love will manifest in the establishment of God’s NEW heavenly court comprised of members from ALL 12 tribes of Israel.
God is already assembling a new government of faithful and loyal children. Children who are humble, God-fearing and God-serving.
“In a very short time, will not Lebanon be turned into a fertile field and the fertile field seem like a forest?” (Isaiah 29:17).
“The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree; he will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. PLANTED IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD, they will flourish in the COURTS OF OUR GOD. They will still yield fruit in old age; They shall be full of sap and very green” (Psalm 92:12-15).
“I [God] will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like the lily, and he will take root like the cedars of Lebanon [giant leaders in God’s heavenly court]. His shoots will sprout, and his beauty will be like the olive tree [priestly] and his fragrance like the cedars of Lebanon [deterrents of pests and bugs = sin]” (Hosea 14:5-6).
God’s new government is sprouting and it will grow into a thick forest in heavenly Lebanon full of faithful and loyal leaders with many beautiful gifts and wonderful qualities.
Who is mankind that God is mindful of them? They are a kingdom of holy, royal, ruling priests in the making and all of their suffering God feels and longs to bring them close to Him and hover over them as the apple of His eye.
“He found him in a desert land, in a barren, howling wilderness; He surrounded him, He instructed him, He guarded him as the apple of His eye. As an eagle stirs up its nest and hovers over its young, He spread His wings to catch them and carried them on His pinions” (Deuteronomy 32:11).
Soon Jacob’s troubles will be over and the world will be free. Rejoicing lies on the near horizon.
“Shout for joy, O heavens; rejoice, O earth; break forth in song, O mountains! For the LORD has comforted His people, and He will have compassion on His afflicted ones” (Isaiah 49:13).
What a wonderful future awaits repentant mankind!
During the time of Jesus on earth, a white stone was given to an accused who through a jury was deemed innocent, hence acquitted. A black stone signified guilt. To have been handed a white stone, the accused could walk away free from condemnation after being tried.
There is a group of people recorded in Revelation 2 who “live—where Satan has his throne.” Biblical scholars scour the planet trying to identify that location, but it is illusive because likely it is simply not one geographical location, but rather places peppered over the planet—places where falsehood, deception and lies are birthed.
Common places of thought, research, studies and teaching all take place in today’s universities and colleges as well as specialized institutions. From there, information is generated, beliefs are published, and theological changes are debated and canonized. Through this core body, information is dispersed and great libraries are founded.
“Pergamum’s library was the center for all things cultural. The Greek writer Plutarch said that it had approximately 200,000 volumes. It came to be known as one of the most important libraries in the ancient world and was second only to the Library of Alexandria. According to the ancient chronicler Pliny the Elder, the Library of Pergamum became so famous that it was considered to be in “keen competition” with the Library of Alexandria. Both attempted to amass the most complete collection of texts, and they developed rival schools of thought and criticism. In fact, legend has it that Egypt’s Ptolemaic dynasty halted shipments of papyrus to Pergamum in hope of slowing the library’s growth. As a result, the city may have later become a leading site for parchment production. A distinguished citizen of Pergamum and wife of a town councilor, Flavia Melitene, was instrumental in supplying the library with many of its works. Notably, she presented a statue of the Roman Emperor Hadrian to the library as a gift. Legend has it that Mark Anthony, ruler of the Macedonian empire at its height, later gave all 200,000 volumes within the library to Cleopatra as a wedding present. The volumes were destined for the Library of Alexandria - ending the recognition of the Library of Pergamum as one of the greatest of its time. It is possible that these volumes were destroyed in the fire at the Library of Alexandria, as the date in which it burned to the ground is unknown.”
A love of learning is a prized gift, but when studies by leading researchers draw students away from God then they become instruments of deception working for Wickedness. The theology of Evolution is an example as well as the Christianization of pagan holidays. All of the Christian bishops who participated in the council of Nicea to formalize changes away from the practices of Jesus who is the same yesterday, today and forever will be brought into judgement and will have to account for their actions.
Jesus said to this group of people in his time on earth and those since then who are characterized as influential religious leaders, scholars and researchers that when he returns he will stand before them with a sharp, double-edged sword. He will confront them on their teachings by judging their word against the word of God. The sword is consistently imaged in the Bible as God’s word. The sword Jesus will hold before them will be sharp—uncompromising and double-edged—address every view and every angle strictly from the lens of Almighty God.
Jesus said, “You have people there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin by eating food sacrificed to idols and committing sexual immorality” (Revelation 2:14). The teaching of Balaam is an expanded view of creation to include the worship of the gods of the nations as if these gods were entitled. Eating their food is symbolic of believing and behaving as the unholy nations do. This simply results in rebellion against Almighty God—the God of Israel.
The Pergamum-like people love digging deep to find information; that is their strength. They are relentless. As in ancient times and into the present, this group of people don’t always find the pure word, rather only portions of it. They are relying too much on their own intellect; they need to lean on Christ for clarity. Christ is coming to purge falsehood, misconceptions, misunderstandings and disinformation from everywhere on earth.
Jesus added, “You also have those who hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans” (Revelation 2:15). The teaching of the Nicolaitans is the belief and establishment of a hierarchical structure within an organization. Matthew recorded, “Don’t let anyone call you ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one teacher, and all of you are equal as brothers and sisters” (Matthew 23:8).
“God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other” (I Corinthians 12:25).
God’s structure is not a pyramid, but a cube with layers and layers of strength placed one above the other forming an unbreakable bond. Each layer is valued equally and critical to the overall strength of the structure.
Into the 21st century, Pergamum-like groups exist in every country worldwide. They are known as experts and highly respected sources of information. Many do not advocate for creation or direct the people to worship God. Many have devised their own formula for the salvation of mankind, which excludes the sacrifice of Jesus. Jesus urges these people to overcome and for those who awaken, repent and stand up for God’s word, His truth and His grace, God will take away their shame by giving them a new name—a name that reflects their win against lies, misinformation, and disinformation. That new name will be written on a white, water-washed stone which they will hold up high with eternal gratitude for God’s grace in their acquittal.
Stones are symbols of long-lasting and robust characteristics. These people will be rewarded with "hidden manna". God knows their passion for discovery and He will reward them with knowledge that is "hidden", deep things that cannot be discovered without God's direct guidance. They will venture into eternal wonders and the energy from discovery will draw them intimately close to Him. They will marvel at God's intellect, complexity and composition. They will wonder and never be satisfied for they will discover His never-ending greatness.
For those who overcome within the Pergamum-like group of people, they have a riveting future of exploration, discovery and wonder that they will share with all creation for all eternity.
Judo-Christians struggle to understand the magnitude of activity and vast domains in heaven. This is part one of a series using scripture to venture into the world of the heavens, their activities and God's plan for mankind after the resurrection.
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THE 144,000 of REVELATION and the PHILADELPHIA CHURCH
The female gender mirrors priesthood; the male gender mirrors national leadership
God created mankind male and female, both are created in the image of God. God is both KING and LORD. This simple statement is rich in meaning as God specifically created two mortals with two unique bodies that fulfill two key roles. It was not by accident; it was intentional.
Repentant mankind forms the temple of God, a kingdom of holy, royal priests
The Apostle Paul taught the Christians that “you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you” and “if anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy which temple you are” (I Corinthians 3:16-17).
This scripture is often interpreted from a physical perspective. Many religiously scrutinize what they eat and how they live in order to keep their physical body pure. Healthy living is important and should never be understated, however, the wonderful news the Apostle Paul was teaching lies in the spiritual meaning. Mankind has the Saviour who paid the price for the sins of all of mankind. Because the penalty of sin is paid an intimate relationship with our Creator is possible upon receiving His Holy Spirit. Mankind collectively, men and women from all nations become the body of Jesus Christ when they repent and receive God’s Holy Spirit. They become a body, a group of people, who have been washed clean—purified of sin and now bind with God in oneness—in unity, in submission to His laws and His ways. They are seen by God as a spiritual virgin. The use of the female gender in this case identifies a religious body of people—a church in contrast to a nation of people, of whom God uses the male gender.
“But the one being joined to the Lord is one spirit” (I Corinthians 6:17). This is a spiritual teaching by mirroring the physical body to the spiritual body, which is comprised of many members fulfilling many different critical responsibilities. “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free, and we were all given one Spirit to drink. For also the body is not one member, but many” (I Corinthians 12:12-14). Each spiritual member in God’s kingdom, once male or female, will be awarded an honoured title of equal value under the kingship of Jesus Christ. No one will be made to feel superior or inferior, more or less worthy; their value is equal before God.
A global body of people is forming the temple of God. Every man and woman on earth who repents, accepts Christ as their Saviour and receives God’s Holy Spirit will become part of a global body of priests, members of a royal and holy God family. This body must remain pure and undefiled. This means they must remain faithful and loyal embracing only the Creator’s theology, His laws and ways. People who buy into the theology and the practices of Satan and the rogue gods who ruled over the nations become defiled and as the Apostle Paul warned, “God will destroy them” (I Corinthians 3:17). God warned ancient Israel many times to refrain from the practices of the rogue gods ruling over the nations. These practices of the rogue gods are in direct opposition to and are full of vile defiance against the Almighty God. Obeying God, keeping His laws and living His ways is purifying and symbolic of being a virgin. These people, God describes as being blameless. They may not be perfect in righteousness, but they will not bend their knee to Satan and his rogue beastly coalition.
The meaning of being blameless
Noah was described by God as being both righteous and blameless. “This is the account of Noah and his family. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God” (Genesis 6:9).
Noah was blameless among the people of his time; he was faithful to God. Noah was NOT worshipping Satan like everyone else on earth. He was worshipping the Creator—the Almighty God. Noah was keeping God’s law, His ordinances and His ways.
Jesus revealed the Satanic worship of the masses when he said, “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark. And they were oblivious, until the flood came and swept them all away. So will it be at the coming of the Son of Man” (Matthew 24:36-38).
· The people did not believe Noah’s warning of a coming flood. They were oblivious because they were living in darkness, wicked people following Satan’s rule.
Only the wicked will not be able to identify the signs of God’s wrath and the coming of Christ.“But you, brothers, are not in the darkness so that this day should overtake you like a thief. For you are all sons of the light and sons of the day; we do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not sleep as the others do, but let us remain awake and sober” (I Thessalonians 5:4-6).
· Those obeying God are the children of light and they will recognize the signs prior to the return of Christ. The most significant of these signs is the repentance of the 21st century nations of Israel. Jesus said, “Now learn the lesson from the fig tree” (Matthew 24:32). The fig tree is symbolic of God’s people. It will be during the time of Jacob’s trouble, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will awaken the asleep among the 12 tribes of 21st century Israel. It will be during a time of great distress and they will start returning to their God, as “new twigs”—new growth, then you will know that summer is near and Jesus excitedly added, “Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door” (Matthew 24:32-33).
The saints are purified and made spotless
During the Great Tribulation, all of the nations of earth will surrender to the supernatural and overwhelming strength of Satan who also give power to his coalition—the beast of Revelation. The whole world, that is all the nations except God’s people, will be astonished at the beast and will follow the beast (Revelation 13:3b). They will witness his power and destruction on God’s repenting people and the people in the nations will say, “Who is like the beast? Who can make war against him?” (Revelation 13:4b).
The beast will make war against the saints and God will allow the beast to conquer them (Revelation 13:7) and in Daniel, “this horn was waging war against the saints and defeating them, until the Ancient of Days came and pronounced judgement in favor of the saints of the Most High” (Daniel 7:21-22a). God is allowing this attack because He is purifying and strengthening the saints. “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. When they fall, they will receive a little help… Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time” (Daniel 11:33-35).
A different group of people: the 144,000 of Revelation
There is a special group of people who are immediately characterized by God as blameless. These are the 144,000 people from twelve tribes of Israel. “These are those who did not defile themselves with women [false religion], for they kept themselves pure” (Revelation 14:4). Jesus used God’s imagery of “women” for churches because he speaks exactly as God speaks and assumes Christians, like the Apostle Paul, understand God’s penmanship that uses imagery, parallels, parables, mirroring, numbers and stories to reveal the spiritual picture. The 144,000 “follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They were purchased from among mankind and offered as firstfruits to God and the Lamb. No lie was found in their mouths; they are blameless” (Revelation 14:4b-5).
Characteristics of the 144,000 of Revelation
God’s use of describing Jesus Christ as “the Lamb” in Revelation emphasizes the importance and value of the sacrifice of His Son. The multiple crowns worn by Christ (Revelation 19:12) reveals multiple victories both in heaven and on earth. His sacrifice is core to God’s saving plan and His futures plans for creation both in heaven and on earth. The 144,000 people of Revelation have a significant role in God’s new government. The number 12 symbolizes perfect government nationally and religiously and 1,000 symbolizes eternity. 144,000 symbolizes the two different types of leadership: national  and religious  bound together into an eternal perfect government and all coming from the kingdom of Israel. The characteristics of these people are:
· They are undefiled by the false theology of Satan and the rogue gods (Revelation 14:4).
· They all come from the 12 sons of Jacob, except for Dan, likely due to his involvement with false religion. God will choose Jacob again (Isaiah 14:1).
· They are honest. They do not deceive, compromise or whitewash wickedness that leads to the perversion of justice (Revelation 14:5).
· They follow, not lead, the Lamb – they speak the pure word of God—no self- interpretations of scripture taught as doctrine (Revelation 14:4). Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. They follow his example without changing anything he did or taught.
· They are servants of God—humble, not self-elevating (Revelation 7:3).
· They are sealed/protected from the wrath of the Lamb and God (Revelation 7:3).
· They have the name of the Son and God, the Father on their foreheads [pledged allegiance to Jesus Christ and Almighty God] in contrast to the “inhabitants on the earth” who have the name and number of the beast on their foreheads (Revelation 14:1).
· They are offered as firstfruits to God and the Lamb—possibly meaning that they are the first to be resurrected upon Christ’s return (Revelation 14:4b), right when the sixth seal is opened.
· They are standing with “the Lamb” on Mount Zion (Revelation 14:1).
· They are the “called, chosen and faithful followers” with Christ when he battles the beast (Revelation 17:14).
· They sing a new song that only they know. A song may be the joy released from victory. [Moses recorded a song in Deuteronomy 32, Deborah sang a song in Judges 5, the four living creatures and the 24 elders sing a new song in Revelation 5:9-10) (Revelation 14:3).
The 144,000 of Revelation appear to be similar to the Philadelphia church
The record of the churches of Revelation appears to describe seven different groups of people within the kingdom of Israel from ancient times all the way to the end of this evil age. The church of Philadelphia shares similar characteristics to the 144,000 people of Revelation.
· They “keep my word and have not denied my name” is similar to not being defiled by false religion.
· They “will be kept from the hour of trial” is similar to being sealed and protected from the wrath of the God and the Lamb.
· They are promised leadership in God’s temple on Mount Zion. “He who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God” is similar to the numerical value of 144,000 = 12x12x1,000 = leaders in God’s new perfect government/temple.
· They will have God’s name and Jesus’ new name on their foreheads. “I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God, and I will also write on him my new name” is similar to having the name of God and the Lamb written on their forehead.
· They are the new Jerusalem. “I will write on him… the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem” supports the idea that Christ will have his resurrected Bride with him when he overpowers the beast and he shows Satan, the beast and the false prophet who tried to overpower God’s heavenly government comprised the Son and beings from the first creation that the NEW and eternal government has the victory and it is comprised of Christ and his resurrected Bride—the new Jerusalem who will stand with him together on Zion [God’s holy mountain/temple].
· They already have their crown. “Hold on to what you have, so no one will take your crown” [they already have rulership—priestly authority not necessarily within a structured church but as a scattered body of people]. They are like the 144,000 who are servants of God, men and women with a level of authority, serving Him.
“I know that you have little strength.” Jesus promises this body of men and women an open door that no man can shut. They are spiritually strong, but a scattered group with little structural support, yet they remain strong during times of great distress.
Throughout time, the large and highly structured religious bodies persecute individuals who will not adhere to their teachings. The great harlot will do the same. Jesus said that the road towards God’s kingdom is narrow and few find it. “But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:14). The road where the bulk of mankind travel is not leading them to life.
God has preselected men and women from 12 tribes of Israel who He knew ahead of time would remain blameless. They may not add up physically to exactly 144,000, but the use of that number reveals a spiritually strong group of men and women from God’s people who will never leave Him or forsake Him. These people will not defile themselves, nor deny the name of Christ because they will follow him wherever he goes. They are totally devoted to God and Christ. The 144,000 of Revelation like the people that make up the Philadelphia church will not fall away or be swept into deception. They will stand strong scattered among twelve tribes of Israel. These people will be among the first to be resurrected and stand with their Saviour, their Groom under the glorious flag of Almighty God in unwavering support for God’s gracious ways and His loving law. Humbly, they will eternally stand grateful for the completed work through the miraculous touch of the Great Potter’s hands.
God Almighty is establishing an eternal kingdom that spans across vast territories and into multiple dimensions comprised of His royal and holy children as well as subjects. This eternal, holy, royal God-family is in the making in two realms: heaven and earth. Creation in heaven and earth are still learning, still growing spiritually and neither one is ready.
The realm in heaven was created first and comprise of spiritual beings created having the fundamentals of God’s word upon their waking moment. The realm on earth was created second and are mortals having no knowledge of God’s word at birth. These two creations were made to complement each other. Both are from two very different learning environments given two very different roles living two very different stories are a witness as God doubles down in His use of number two.
God’s word is recorded in the Bible. His penmanship is exquisite. His language is a journey beyond mortality into the vast wonders of eternity. His message to all of mankind is clearly preserved in His Holy Days, mirrored in His covenant people, and reflected in His stories of people: their conversations, their healings, their journeys, their everyday lives recorded in the Holy Bible to reveal a precious promise of salvation that is gift wrapped with the great honour of being a member of His holy, royal, ruling God-family.
God’s use of numbers, mirroring and pictures, parables and parallels take Believers into God’s heavenly world that reveals in high-definition clarity His saving plan for all of mankind and the union of two realms: heaven and earth when all things are restored.
The white elephant in the room is often preached but rarely understood. What is God teaching mankind about the sin of Adam and the sin of Eve and how important is it in the 21st century?
ADAM’S TYPE OF SIN
“Nevertheless, death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness ofthe offense of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come” (Romans 5:14).
Adam’s sin was a specific type.
It began in the garden of Eden. While Satan was conversing with Eve, Adam was there listening quietly. As head of the family, he was tasked with protecting his wife, both spiritually and physically and the children to come. But at that moment, he was lured into an internal battle of reasoning within himself the possibility that God Almighty might be holding something back from him. He knew he was a son of God, though mortal, his body shone like the sun. He knew of his brothers in the heavenly creation who are rulers, powers and authorities. He too was given rulership—on earth. Adam likely pondered a disparity that generated resentment because after Eve acted on Satan’s words, Adam followed with an action that broke his covenant with God Almighty.
“But they [the house of Israel—10 tribes], like Adam, have transgressed the covenant; there they were unfaithful to Me” (Hosea 6:7).
Adam’s sin was of the same type as the fallen house of Israel, specially the ten tribes of Israel who were divorced by God. They wanted to be like the nations around them whose kingdoms were grand and stature strong. The leaders of the ten tribes of Israel wanted to rule themselves so that they could self-direct and acquire superpower status, flaunt a massive army and push their influence across the whole world. They wanted an empire that was visually glorious with tall temples and government houses, vast jurisdictions and riches lavished with prestige. Serving and worshipping a fallen heavenly ruler instead of their God was acceptable to them in order to get was they craved. This was in complete opposite to God’s plan for His people. He said that they would become a holy kingdom of royal priests where the inside was glorious and the outside was humble.
God responded to these carnal minded people, “You say, ‘We want to be like the nations like the peoples of the world, who serve wood and stone. But what you have in mind will never happen. As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I will rule over you with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with outpoured wrath. I will bring you from the nations and gather you from the countries where you have been scattered—with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with outpoured wrath. I will bring you into the desert of the nations and there, face to face, I will execute judgement upon you’” (Ezekiel 20:32-35).
God is the potter and His people are the clay. He is working with them to bring them into repentance after they see and experience the horrors of their choices being like the nations. “As for you, O house of Israel’ God said, ‘Go and serve your idols, every one of you! But afterward you will surely listen to me and no longer profane my holy name with your gifts and idols” (Ezekiel 20:39).
God allows choices and the suffering that comes from those choices. From that time into the present, God gave each of the ten tribes of Israel their moment of glory with superpower status and it brought tyranny, suffering and sadness.
Adam’s desire for power and glory by worshipping fallen angels broke the covenant he had made with God. Fortunately, God foresaw into the future and incorporated a saving plan for mortals before the foundation of the world. One, a type of Adam, was inserted into God’s plan that repentant mankind could anticipate. One that would be the example for all of mankind to follow wherever he goes.
JESUS CHRIST IS A TYPE OF ADAM
Jesus Christ is that One who is a type of Adam. Where Adam and the fallen angels failed, Christ succeeded. This is why the Apostle Paul used the term “Adam” in I Timothy 3:13-14. “For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.” The Apostle Paul is referring to Jesus Christ, the Adam—the last Adam. All of the angels in heaven understand God’s word. They are not deceived by Satan’s wily logic. If they sin, it is intentional.
God the Father loves the Son—the tested cornerstone and wearer of many crowns. Through his suffering, salvation came to all of mankind on earth. His love for God’s word and His way brought the Father to trumpet His admiration, “Let all God’s angels worship him… Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy” (Hebrews 1:6, 8-9).
Through Christ, mankind can live. “So it is written: ‘The first man Adam became a living being;’ the last Adam a life-giving spirit” (I Corinthians 15:45).
Finally, the last Adam, like there was an echo of Adams before, Christ achieved what previously could not be done. God Almighty is teaching the first creation in heaven the significance of His Son, Jesus Christ. Creation in both heaven and earth have learned that Jesus Christ is the perfect example for both creations in both realms.
“Nevertheless, death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who did not sin in the way that Adam transgressed. He is a pattern of the One to come” (Romans 5:14).
“The first man is from the earth, earthy; the second man is from heaven” (I Corinthians 15:47).
God’s heavenly court comprised once of the great sons of God [Ezekiel 31] has fallen. God’s penmanship is exquisite. When describing His heavenly world, He uses earthly descriptors to provide a rich picture. Trees image leaders. Lebanon is the name of His headquarters and heavenly court. Different types of trees image different types of leaders and the special qualities of those leaders are the same qualities in the trees. For example, the hardy Poplar tree can grow in poor and hash conditions. Its valued quality is its ability to regenerate the soil and rebuild the environment. Cedar trees have the unique qualities that mirror the great leaders in God’s headquarters. These tall and grand trees are dimensionally stable with a built-in thermal insulator. With oils that act as natural preservatives, these trees are resistant to bacteria and fungus. To top it off, they release a fresh aroma that deters pests. God gave the name of His headquarters in heaven, ‘Lebanon’ to mirror on earth His stately and regal leaders—His pride and joy. Olive trees can produce fruit even when they are very old. This fruit when compressed produces a high-quality oil used in ancient times as fuel to shine light—like the work of the priesthood.
All of God’s most esteemed sons in His heavenly court chose to ally with Satan. “Then all the trees [leaders]of Eden, the CHOICEST and BEST OF LEBANON, all the trees [heavenly sons of God filled with God’s Holy Spirit] that were well-watered, were CONSOLED IN THE EARTH BELOW” (Ezekiel 31:16).
God is warring against them. “Open your doors, O LEBANON [name of God’s headquarters], that the fire may devour your cedars [great leaders in God’s heavenly court]! Wail, O cypress, for the cedar has fallen, because the glorious trees have been destroyed; Wail, O oaks of Bashan, for the impenetrable forest has come down” (Zechariah 11:2).
Pride comes before a fall. All of the fallen angels became proud and arrogant. “See, the Lord, the LORD Almighty, will lop off the boughs with great power. The lofty trees will be felled; the tall ones will be brought low. He will cut down the forest thickets with an ax; LEBANON WILL FALL BEFORE THE MIGHTY ONE” (Isaiah 10:33-34).
The fall of His heavenly court was painful for God because He loves all of creation. “Consider Assyria, once a cedar in Lebanon [once a great leader in God’s headquarters]… it was proud of its height. I handed it over to the ruler of the nations, for him to deal with according to its wickedness… On the day it was brought down to the grave I covered the deep springs with mourning for it…” (Ezekiel 31:3, 10b, 15a). God wept.
In God’s goodness, He saw a people who would grow from out of heinous wickedness to become eternally loyally and faithful. To these people, He opened the door to honor them as the new members of His NEW headquarters. “These are those who did not defile themselves with women [false religion], for they remained virgins. They follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They were purchased from among mankind and offered as firstfruits to God and the Lamb” (Revelation 14:4). With them a great multitude from each nation and tongue will bend their knee and worship Almighty God (Revelation 7:9).
GOD’S NEW LEBANON WILL SPROUTING
“In a very short time, will not Lebanon be turned into a fertile field and the fertile field seem like a forest?” (Isaiah 29:17).
“The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree; he will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. PLANTED IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD, they will flourish in the COURTS OF OUR GOD. They will still yield fruit in old age; They shall be full of sap and very green” (Psalm 92:12-15).
“I [God] will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like the lily, and he will take root like the cedars of Lebanon. His shoots will sprout, and his beauty will be like the olive tree and his fragrance like the cedars of Lebanon” (Hosea 14:5-6).
God’s new government is sprouting and it will grow into a thick forest in Lebanon full of faithful and loyal leaders with many beautiful gifts and wonderful qualities to fill a multitude of positions.
SATAN’S FALL AND DESTRUCTION
Fallen angels were never deceived; their sins are intentional. They broke their covenant with God when they desired self-rule and authority beyond their own jurisdiction. Their pride and arrogance caused them to slip away and God’s Holy Spirit began to drain. In their emptiness, they now believe they can overthrow God Almighty.
“Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made” (Genesis 3:1a). Satan, through his tantalizing praises, turns pure hearts into bitterness. For people who continually enter into walks with Satan, he darkens their mind and the most glorious attributes of God. Satan who was at one time the most beautiful guardian angel of God has been demoted to a “beast of the field” and after leading Eve astray, God demoted him again to crawl on his belly until he is demoted again into mortality.
God foretells his outcome, “You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most Height.’ But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit. Those who see you stare at you, they ponder your fate: ‘Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble, the man who made the world a desert, who overthrew its cities and would not let his captives go home?” (Isaiah 14:13-17).
Mortality is the fate of Satan and the fallen angels. They will be drained of all life and die like mortals.
“I said, ‘You are gods; you are all sons of the Most High. But you will die like mere men; you will fall like every other ruler” (Psalm 82:6).
Satan and his coalition of fallen angels work in darkness. They lead mankind into believing that they are invincible spiritual beings. That is one of the Satan’s many lies. His fate and the fate of all fallen angels is that they will fall from their thrones and die like mere men.
EVE THE MOTHER OF ALL ON EARTH WAS DECEIVED, LIKE ALL OF MANKIND
The creation of male and female was designed to show two leading roles in God’s kingdom: national and religious leadership. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him: male and female he created them” (Genesis 2:1). Both of these roles image God as He is both KING and LORD.
Understandably, both genders will share equally in heirship because both their roles are critical to the preservation of God’s kingdom.
“Husbands, in the same way, treat your wives with consideration as a delicate vessel, and with honor as fellow heirs of the gracious gift of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered” (I Peter 3:7).
Eve, mankind was created second intentionally to teach mankind about two separate creations: one in heaven pictured in Adam and one on earth pictured in Eve.
Two creations comprise of the great witness for the need to marry the two. God’s plan from before creation was the marriage of nation and religion into righteous law and order.
The female gender mirrors all men and women on earth and the church whether righteous or ungodly. The destiny for all of mankind is to become a holy kingdom of royal priests.
God’s people were informed of their calling millennia ago. “And unto Me you shall be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.' These are the words that you are to speak to the Israelites" (Exodus 19:6).
God’s church was informed of their calling two thousand years ago. “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, to proclaim the virtues of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (I Peter 2:9).
God’s second creation on earth was foretold of their calling through the Apostle John. “And they sang a new song: You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribes and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom of priests to serve our God and they will reign on the earth” (Revelation 5:9-10).
The female gender is the image of theology: knowledge, understanding and wisdom all are used by the female pronoun.
With this understanding, the reading of Genesis 3:15 adds clarity to “I will put enmity between you [the serpent] and the woman [the church], and between your offspring and hers…” God is referring to the church who allowed sin to enter generating a constant battle between two forces: evil and good.
Also, “To the woman he said, ‘I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you” (Genesis 3:16). Not only do women suffer while birthing children, on a spiritual level, the ministry, prophets and priesthood of God have been and continue to be persecuted, some tortured to death while preaching to birth a spiritually healthy congregation in this evil age.
Had Eve not sinned, God’s rulership and His ways would have prevailed birthing a congregation worldwide of righteous God-fearing and faithful people without suffering. From lemons to lemonade, God had planned from the foundation of the world the sacrifice of His Son for the saving of mankind.
“…but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or spot. He was known before the foundation of the world, but was revealed in the last times for your sake” (I Peter 1:19-20).
“He was delivered up by God's set plan and foreknowledge, and you, by the hands of the lawless, put Him to death by nailing Him to the cross” (Acts 2:23).
Suffering is part of the spiritual growth of mankind.
“Be sober-minded and alert. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in your faith and in the knowledge that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore you, secure you, strengthen you, and establish you” (I Peter 5:8-9).
Since all of mankind has fallen into sin, like Eve, they will desire Christ their Saviour and he will rule over them. Mankind needs his guidance and knows it. Even the ministry and priesthood misunderstand scripture and mislead the congregation is evidence of the need for the Word to interpret and clarify scripture.
THE ONLY TEACHER
Jesus Christ is the only teacher. ““Don’t let anyone call you ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one teacher, and all of you are equal as brothers and sisters” (Matthew 23:8).
It may not be understood by the ministry and priesthood that only Jesus Christ can interpret scripture; he is the only teacher qualified to do that. Unfortunately, there are many different doctrines within Christian churches each strongly upholding their beliefs. The disunity from teaching different doctrines will be resolved by Jesus Christ, the Word, when he returns. The ministry will follow the Apostle Paul’s words to be silent. There will be no debating or pushing their interpretation of scripture onto Jesus Christ, the Adam who wasn’t deceived. “And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women will be saved through childbirth, if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety” (I Timothy 2:14-15).
The Apostle Paul was specific to use Adam in verse 13 and 14 of I Timothy 2 because he is identifying Jesus Christ, the last Adam who was successful at withstanding Satan and not falling into sin. Christ is the Word; he knows God’s word thoroughly. The use of the word “women” identifies the leaders of the church who lead the congregation astray following doctrines through their own interpretation.
The ministry and priesthood who continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety will birth a spiritually healthy congregation; only these churches will be saved. I Timothy 2:15 is not referring to physical women because men and women are saved only through the sacrifice of Christ. The Apostle Paul is using language that mirrors spiritual roles. Churches and the ministry of those churches will only be saved by preaching scripture leaning on the interpretation by Jesus Christ, the last Adam. Following the first Adam will lead to death.
There are times when scripture uses a specific gender but it refers only to the spiritual sense. The 144,000 people of Revelation do not defile themselves with false religion. They are virgins. These virgins are not 144,000 women. The use of the word virgin has the spiritual meaning that these men and women are totally faithful to God. “These are those who did not defile themselves with women, for they remained virgins. They follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They were purchased from among mankind and offered as firstfruits to God and the Lamb” (Revelation 14:4).
DECEPTION THROUGH IGNORANCE
Often mankind is well intentioned, but fall into sin simply through ignorance. Satan is well versed in the word of God. After fasting for forty days and forty nights, Jesus indeed was physically hungry, but spiritually full.
Satan attacked the physical state of Jesus and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread” (Matthew 4:3). Jesus quoted scripture and said, “It is written, ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God’” (Matthew 4:4).
This is a double-edged response because the word of God does have a physical filling component about it, but Satan would not have experienced that effect. During a rich spiritual conversation over a meal with friends and family it is both physically and spiritually filling, but the spiritual food will always outweigh the physical.
“Then the devil took Jesus to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down. For it is written: ‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone’”.
Satan quoted Psalm 91:10-12. He knew that Jesus dwells in the shelter of God Almighty and God promises to protect everyone who comes to Him seeking refuge. God Almighty declares, “Because he loves me, I will rescue him, I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name… I will answer him, I will be with him in trouble… deliver him and honor him” (Psalm 91:14-15). This is the promise that God Almighty gives to those who love Him.
Jesus replied, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test’” (Matthew 4:7). To put yourself in harms way, is a mockery of the power of Almighty God.
Now, the third time the devil took Jesus to a very high mountain and showed him the kingdoms on earth. Having the supreme authority in his evil kingdom to bestow a crown (Isaiah 23:8), Satan offered Jesus rulership over all the earth now—without having to die on the cross, if he bends his knee and worships him. Though Jesus so desired to rescue mankind, he didn’t entertain the thought for a second to worship Satan and violate his covenant with God as Adam and the fallen angels did. He immediately snapped, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only’” (Matthew 4:10).
Jesus Christ is the Word. His perfect understanding of God’s way keeps him from falling into deception. Mankind is born without knowledge; mankind grows in grace and knowledge. Even babes in Christ have not matured to distinguish between right and wrong.
“Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil” (Hebrews 5:13-14). Satan knew Eve was still a babe in Christ, unable to distinguish between good and evil.
Immature Judo-Christians often lean on their own understanding, as Eve did. They honestly think their way is right, until the consequences occur and they regret their actions.
“There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end, it leads to death” (Proverbs 14:12).
“What fruit did you reap at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? The outcome of those things is death” (Romans 6:21).
JESUS SPOKE ONLY THE WORDS OF HIS FATHER
Jesus is the example for mankind. He came to earth not to fulfill his own agenda or preach his own theology. He came to do many things, but most of all, to fulfill God’s salvation plan for mankind.
“For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken.And I know that His command leads to eternal life. So, I speak exactly what the Father has told Me to say” (John 12:49-50).
The wise counsellor for mankind is Jesus Christ. He only is the perfect interpreter of scripture with a perfect understanding of God’s word.
“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that listens to counsel is wise” (Proverbs 12:15).
God Almighty is the source of perfection. Adam lost trust in God and Eve trusted and acted on her own thinking. She assessed what Satan said and it appeared on the outside to be a good thing—“wise”. When the Apostle John saw “the woman—the great prostitute” he was amazed because on the outside she looks good. The angel with the Apostle John said, “Why are you astonished?” (Revelation 17:7). On the outside, things can look right and good. Calling on God for His knowledge, understanding and wisdom is the only safe way to keep from being deceived. Christ is the conduit for all of mankind in prayer to speak directly to our loving and wise Father in heaven.
These mortal bodies worked to teach mankind important spiritual matters which will become common knowledge under Christ’s rule. God is transparent, though His use of imagery, mirroring, parallels, parables is often a mystery to those who don’t ask for understanding and those following teachers who rely on their own interpretations.
God loves the relentless spiritual explorer. “It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter” (Proverbs 25:2). However, if the waters become muddy, turn to God and simply ask for his knowledge, understanding and wisdom. He will never decline this request.
The sin of Adam mirrors the sins of the fallen angels in heaven who knew better but were enticed by Satan to desire self-direction, self-reliance, self-glory and rulership beyond their jurisdiction and in turn, they were brought into his coalition to battle against God Almighty.
The sin of Eve was caused by relying on self-reasoning. It is the act of using human thinking that always appears to be right but leads to death. This is the sin of all of mankind who through God’s grace has a salvation plan that is brought into fruition when mankind repents, accepts Christ as their Saviour, then God gives them His Holy Spirit which supersedes the spirit of man providing them clarity of thought that leads to righteous actions.
Christ set the example. He spoke only the words given to him by God Almighty because he knows God’s words only bring life and this life, Christ made possible again for all mankind on earth. Whether the sins were of the type of Adam or Eve, all is forgiven for those who repent for our Father in heaven loves all of mankind and wishes that nobody choose death, but life eternal.
Daniel understood from the scriptures that the desolation of Jerusalem, God centre on earth, would last 70 years. In earnest prayer and in fasting, humility and servitude, he came before God Almighty beseeching forgiveness of sins on behalf of all of the twelve tribes of Israel. “Lord, you are righteous, but this day we are covered with shame—the men of Judah and people of Jerusalem and all Israel, both near and far, in all the countries where you have scattered us because of our unfaithfulness to you…O Lord, listen! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, hear and act! For your sake, O my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your Name” (Daniel 9:7, 19).
God Almighty heard his prayer and responded to Daniel’s cry to restore honour to Jerusalem—the city God chose to seat His glorious presence. The God of Israel alone is the One who is the Source of all life and power—the “one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we exist” (I Corinthians 8:6). God has declared to all creation, “I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me” (Isaiah 46:9).
Daniel desired that honour be justly restored and returned to the Supreme God and that the desolation of Jerusalem, God’s holy city on earth be filled again with His glory and presence, instead of the destruction and darkness that resulted from the sins of His people.
“Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, His holy mountain.
Beautiful in loftiness, the joy of all the earth, like the peaks of Zaphon is Mount Zion, the city of the great King” (Psalm 48:1-2).
Before Daniel finished praying, Gabriel, the messenger-angel gave him God’s response, “Seventy, ‘sevens’ are decreed for your people and your holy city to:
1. Finish transgression = stop/imprison rebellion within your people—the kingdom of Israel, all 12 tribes.
2. Put an end/seal up sin = hate sinning, imprison it, hinder it so that it is impossible to spread.
3. Atoned for wickedness = sins are altogether removed out of the sight of God—blotted out, altogether set aside as the Day of Atonement pictures. Hence, on the Day of Atonement of the last year of this evil age, the people of the 12 tribes of Israel who are not resurrected but come out of the Great Tribulation repentant, accepted Christ as their Saviour and God’s grace will be atoned for.
The three above are then replaced by:
4. Bring in everlasting righteousness which comes only from heaven as a gift of God.
“My righteousness draws near, My salvation is on the way, and My arms will bring justice to the nations. The islands will look for Me and wait in hope for My arm” (Isaiah 51:5).
In the place of the removed transgression is the perfected righteousness.
5. Seal up vision and prophecy which is sealed when it is laid under a seal, so that it can no longer actively show itself.
“Prophecies and prophets are sealed, when by the full realization of all prophecies, prophecy ceases, no prophets any more appear… When the sins are sealed, the prophecy is also sealed, for prophecy is needed in the war against sin; when sin is thus so placed that it can no longer operate, then prophecy also may come to a state of rest; when sin comes to an end in its place, prophecy can come to an end also by its fulfilment, there being no place for it after the setting aside of sin. And when the apostasy is shut up, so that it can no more spread about, then righteousness will be brought, that it may possess the earth, now freed from sin, shut up in its own place” (Kliefoth, Keil and Delitzsch https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/daniel-9.html).
6. Anoint the most holy is a divine anointing of a new sanctuary, prior to God coming and filling it with His glory.
“The reference is to the anointing of a new sanctuary, temple, or most holy place. The anointing is the act by which the place is consecrated to be a holy place of the gracious presence and revelation of God. If thus the anointing of a most holy is here announced, then by it there is given the promise, not of the renewal of the place already existing from of old, but of the appointment of a new place of God's gracious presence among His people, a new sanctuary.” (Keil and Delitzsch https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/daniel-9.html)
Recorded by the Apostle John in Revelation 21:22, the New Jerusalem comprises of eternal righteousness. “I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp… Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”
God’s work is completed when all creation has made their choice. The wicked are destroyed and only the righteous remain. The New Jerusalem will be constructed of layers upon layers of righteous God fearing and serving people. “Therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone. In Him the whole building is fitted together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord” (Ephesians 2:19-21).
The people grouped and identified as the church in Philadelphia are the pillars of this great temple. “Him who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it. I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on him my new name” (Revelation 3:12).
Planet Earth will become the temple of God and righteous mankind will serve as royal priests in His holy kingdom. “You [the Lamb] are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation you have made them to be a kingdom of priests to serve our God” (Revelation 5:9).
The greatest work is yet to be done! Who will do the work? When will the finishing take place?
FIRST: APPOINTED TO PREPARE THE WAY BEFORE GOD’S DAY OF GREAT WRATH: The Preparer is made known as Elijah.
“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet BEFORE the coming of the great and dreadful Day of the LORD” (Malachi 4:5).
Elijah was taken in a whirlwind before he could fulfill the task of turning the hearts of the fathers to the children and children to the fathers. This is the process of preaching God’s word, exposing falsehood, bringing people into repentance, baptising and teaching them how to humbly walk with God and live His ways.
Elijah, the Tishbite came from Gilead, the location renowned for their healing balms. It is by no accident that Elijah came from that area. God puts people in places to add greater meaning to the stories He preserves. Elijah lived during a time when he saw all of the house of Israel (the ten tribes) worship rogue gods. He thought he was alone in worshipping the Almighty God, but he was mistaken. Seven thousand unknown to Elijah were blameless before God. Elijah did great miracles displaying God’s superiority before the house of Israel and to the people he said, “‘How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.’ But the people said nothing” (I Kings 18:21).
A time resting on our near horizon will shake the people of the 21st century house of Israel, the ten tribes, the Christians and they will be confronted again.
"Look, I am sending you the prophet Elijah before the great and dreadful day of the Lord arrives. His preaching will turn the hearts of fathers to their children, and the hearts of children to their fathers. Otherwise I will come and strike the land with a curse" (Malachi 4:5-6, NLT).
Before the time of God’s great wrath, Elijah the prophet or an Elijah-type will do as John the Baptist did prior to Jesus’ ministry. He will bring many people to see God’s truth and turn them away from wickedness. They will be baptised and open their heart to obey God and live in peace, during a time when the whole world is controlled by the harlot of Revelation, Satan and the beast.
John the Baptist prepared the way for the ministry of Jesus. He preached od’s word, uncovered the false teachings of the Jewish priesthood, taught about God’s salvation for mankind, brought people to repent and baptised them onto the path of righteousness.
The disciples understood the mission given to John the Baptist. “Many of the sons of Israel he will turn back to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord” (Luke 1:16-17).
“And you, my child [John, the Baptist], will be called a prophet of the Most High; to give to His people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun [Jesus] will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace” (Luke 1:76-79).
“And if you are willing to accept what I say, he is Elijah, the one the prophets said would come” (Matthew 11:14). If John the Baptist was sent to fulfill the work of Elijah and turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and children to the fathers preparing the way for Jesus’ ministry, then another Elijah-type prophet or Elijah himself will come to prepare the way before the wrath of God. “For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?” (Revelation 6:17). This great day of wrath is scheduled to begin when the Lamb opens the sixth seal.
“There was a great earthquake. The sun turned black like sack cloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red, and the stars in the sky fell to earth… Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and every free man hid in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and the rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!’” (Revelation 6:12-16).
Why do all these people run and hide crying out to the mountains and the rocks to fall on them, but that they refused to heed the message of Christ’s return and salvation through his sacrifice. These people were those who decided when Satan was thrown down to earth with his rogue and rebellious angels to surrender and worship him and the beast because they will say, “Who is like the beast and who can make war against him?” (Revelation 13:4) They will not choose to risk their safety under the rule of the beast and Satan to call out to the Almighty God for help.
These same people will enjoy living under Satan’s rule. It will be as in the days of Noah when people were eating, drinking, giving in marriage and worshipping Satan. These people were oblivious to the upcoming flood that took their lives, so too, the return of Christ will be a great surprise for the wicked worshipping Satan. They will recognize the Lamb of God and they will be terrified because they will have received the witness and rejected it.
At Christ’s return, the first resurrection will include all of the prophets of old, the apostles, and all of the saints into the 21st century. It appears some of the wicked will also be brought back to life into their former physical bodies to witness Christ’s return. “The high priest said to him, ‘I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God.’ ‘Yes, it is as you say,’ Jesus replied. ‘But I say to all of you: In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven’” (Matthew 26:63-64).
Now, at Christ’s return the unfinished work of the prophets will explode into action!
SECOND: THE RETURN OF JESUS CHRIST AS KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
God Almighty is the Great Potter molding people into priests as He creates a holy kingdom of royal priests on earth. This kingdom will be His new temple that will cover the earth through the leadership of the “tested stone”—His Son. “But of the Son He says, ‘Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, and the righteous scepter is the scepter of His kingdom’” (Hebrews 1:8).
God works in stages and through processes. Righteousness on earth will not be instantaneous. Christ’s rule over the nations will progressively bring all nations into servitude to Almighty God.
“In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be left for another people; it will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it will itself endure forever” (Daniel 2:44).
God’s righteous government will increase and eventually through the rulership of Jesus Christ cover the whole earth.
“Then the iron, clay, bronze, silver, and gold were shattered and became like chaff on the threshing floor in summer. The wind carried them away, and not a trace of them could be found. But the stone that had struck the statue became a great mountain [government] and filled the whole earth” (Daniel 2:35).
The crushing and putting and end to opposition will take work. God has pre-appointed prophets to work with Him and Jesus Christ to bring opposition to an end and establish righteous rulership.
THIRD: APPOINTED OVER NATIONS AND KINGDOMS: The judge of the nations is made known to be Jeremiah.
Jeremiah: “See today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant” (Jeremiah 1:10).
Resurrected Jeremiah working under the leadership of God Almighty and Jesus Christ, will lead the operation to humble nations, destroy completely unrepentant nations, and bring into submission repenting nations.
· To tear down: make low/reduce their power
· To destroy: completely annihilate nations refusing to repent
· To overthrow: bring into submission and under the authority of the conqueror
· To build: existing repentant nations will be strengthened
· To plant: humble peoples, families will be established to grow into nations
The repentant 21st century nations of Israel will be called into battle and strengthened by God after He rescues them from captivity and the ten tribes under the overall leadership of Ephraim “will become like mighty men, and their hearts will be glad as with wine [ecstatic that God heard their cry for help and is leading them into battle against their oppressors” (Zechariah 10:7).
God will use both houses of Israel to fight. “I will bend Judah as I bend my bow and fill it with Ephraim. I will rouse your sons, O Zion, against your sons, O Greece, and make you like a warrior’s sword” (Zechariah 9:13).
The Satan-worshipping nations will feel the great wrath of Almighty God as He leads His remnant exiles against them. God’s remnant will not be afraid; they will have witnessed the power of their God and learned to trust Him. “Then the LORD will appear over them; his arrow will flash like lightning. The Sovereign LORD will sound the trumpet; He will march in the storms of the south, and the LORD Almighty will shield them. They will destroy and overcome with slingstones. They will drink and roar as with wine… The LORD their God will save them on that day as the flock of his people” (Zechariah 9:14-16).
When the battles are fought and dust settled, Jeremiah will lead the work in building and strengthening the repentant nations and bringing together humble peoples and families calling out to God and establish them in peace and safety so that they can grow spiritually and come to know their loving Creator.
FOURTH: APPOINTED TO RAISE UP THE TRIBES OF JACOB (12), RESTORE THE PROTECTED ONES OF ISRAEL, MAKE YOU A LIGHT FOR THE NATIONS TO BRING GOD’S SALVATION TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH: The servant of Almighty God is Isaiah who will lead the raising up of his people—the whole kingdom of Israel as a holy kingdom of royal priests to minister to the world God’s gift of grace.
“And now says the LORD, who formed Me [Isaiah] from the womb to be His Servant, to bring Jacob back to Him, that Israel might be gathered to Him—for I am honored in the sight of the LORD, and My God is My strength— He says: ‘It is not enough for You to be My Servant, to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the protected ones of Israel. I will also make You a light for the nations, to bring My salvation to the ends of the earth’” (Isaiah 49:5-6).
"I, the LORD, have called you for a righteous purpose, and I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and appoint you to be a covenant for the people and a light to the nations” (Isaiah 42:6).
1. Raise up the 12 tribes is to authenticate and give authority to the Kingdom of Israel, to become internationally renown as a holy kingdom of royal priests under God.
2. Restore the protected ones of Israel is to acknowledge and restore respect and honor to a special group of people, who throughout time, were totally dedicated to God and following Christ wherever he goes, but were persecuted by their own people.
3. Enlighten the nations about the truth—God’s word and His way of love—God’s grace and salvation plan for them.
FIFTH: APPOINTED TO RESURRECT ANCIENT FALLEN ISRAEL: The honor to give life and the chance of repentance to a fallen, lost and ancient people, is given to Ezekiel by God and through His power to resurrect ancient Israel into the 21st century at the beginning of Christ’s millennial reign.
God said to Ezekiel, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD’” (Ezekiel 37:4-6).
“So, I prophesied as I was commanded. And… there was a noise, a rattling sound and the bones came together, bone to bone…” (Ezekiel 37:7).
God will give them His Holy Spirit and they will live (Ezekiel 37:14).
SIXTH: APPOINTED TO REUNITE THE TWO HOUSES OF ISRAEL INTO ONE KINGDOM: This blessed prophet, Ezekiel will also reunite the kingdom of Israel. ALL of Israel, both houses, will be rejoined as one. A double blessing will be revealed when the ancient and new also come together at the same time, into this newly re-united kingdom.
“The word of the LORD came to me [Ezekiel]: ‘Son of man, take a stick of wood and write on it, ‘Belonging to Judah and the Israelites associated with him.’ Then take another stick of wood, and write on it, ‘Ephraim’s stick, belonging to Joseph and all the house of Israel associated with him.’ Join them together into one stick so that they will become one in your hand…Hold them before their eyes… I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains [government] of Israel. There will be one king over them and they will never again be two nations or be divided into two kingdoms” Ezekiel 37:15-17.
Early in the Millennium, the nations will see the work of God Almighty through His Son—the King of kings and Lord of lords. They will see the reunification of two houses divided for thousands of years come into ONE loving and peaceful union. They will witness a great resurrection back into physical bodies of an ancient people and the welcome into their 21st century covenant family kingdom of Israel. The excitement and wonder of this resurrection and unification will dazzle the world and the awe of Almighty God dwelling among them will bring fearful respect as they come to understand the unique role this kingdom holds.
SEVENTH: APPOINTED KING OVER ALL ISRAEL: The man after God’s heart will rule as King of Israel—King David and he will establish and enforce God’s law and order over the whole kingdom of Israel
The king over all of the 12 tribes of Israel in ancient times, will again rule over them during the Millennium and throughout eternity. “My servant David will be king over them, and they will all have one shepherd. They will follow my laws and be careful to keep my decrees” (Ezekiel 37:24). Law and order will be followed, justice will be enforced and truth and honesty will be respected.
EIGHTH: APPOINTED GOVERNOR TO ENSURE THE BUILDING OF THE NEW TEMPLE IN JERUSALEM COMPRISES OF ONLY THE RIGHTEOUS: The guard against wickedness is Zerubbabel.
He is like a signet ring, God said. He will have the authority to make official everything needed to ensure the building of the New Jerusalem comprises only of the righteous. He will scrutinize everyone before allowing them to take on critical roles and offices within the NEW temple.
In Haggai 2:23 we read, “‘On that day,’ declares the LORD Almighty, ‘I will take you, my servant Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will make you like my signet ring, for I have chosen you.’”
Ancient kings used signet rings to officiate a command. “A signet contained an emblem unique to the king. Official documents were sealed with a dollop of soft wax impressed with the king’s signet, usually kept on a ring on his finger. Such a seal certified the document as genuine, much like a notary public’s stamp today.
It is important to understand who Zerubbabel is. He is the governor of the rebuilt Jerusalem and is himself of royal blood, being a descendant of David and the grandson of Judah’s King Jehoiachin. Years earlier, Jehoiachin had lost his throne when he was deported to Babylon; in fact, God pictured Jehoiachin as a signet ring being removed from God’s finger (Jeremiah 22:24). Now, God calls Zerubbabel the “signet ring,” but this time it won’t be removed.
In Haggai’s prophecy, God is giving Zerubbabel encouragement and hope. The governor is “chosen” for a unique and noble purpose. As God’s signet ring, Zerubbabel is given a place of honor and authority. God is reinstating the Davidic line and renewing His covenant with David.”
NINTH: OFFERED THE POSITION IN THE NEW JERUSALEM TO GOVERN GOD’S HOUSE/TEMPLE AND EXERCISE AUTHORITY IN GOD’S COURTS: A high priest in his time, Joshua will be offered governorship in God’s temple and charge in God’s legal system.
“Then I said, ‘Let them put a clean turban on his head.’ So a clean turban was placed on his head, and they clothed him, as the angel of the LORD stood by. Then the angel of the LORD gave this charge to Joshua: ‘This is what the LORD of Hosts says: ‘If you walk in My ways and keep My instructions, then you will govern My house and will also have charge of My courts; and I will give you a place among these who are standing here’” (Zechariah 3: 5-7).
The Joshua of Zechariah 3 was a Levite and descendant of Aaron in post-exilic Jerusalem in approximately 538 B.C. The prophet Haggai also refers to the high priest Joshua: “In the second year of Darius the king [537 B.C.], in the sixth month, on the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came by the hand of Haggai the prophet to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest” (Haggai 1:1).
Joshua would soon help rebuild the temple (Ezra 5:1-2). God used the prophets Haggai and Zechariah to communicate His command to rebuild the temple and encourage the people in their work. Joshua served as the spiritual leader and high priest who supported the effort, and Zerubbabel was the governor of Judah, also involved in the work.
As the first high priest in the rebuilt Jerusalem, Joshua played a significant historical role and was a precursor to Ezra, who came to Jerusalem during the second wave of returning exiles.
God told the prophet Zechariah to place a crown on Joshua’s head: “Take the silver and gold and make a crown, and set it on the head of the high priest, Joshua son of Jehozadak” (Zechariah 6:11). Joshua was already the high priest, and the prophet was to symbolically crown him king. The coronation was to serve as an encouragement to Joshua in his work of rebuilding the temple. Also, it was a visual prophecy of the future Messiah—who would be both high priest (Hebrews 6:20) and king (Matthew 27:11). Significantly, the name “Joshua” is the Hebrew equivalent of the Greek name “Jesus.” Thus, the priest-king Joshua was a foreshadowing of the coming Messiah, and the similarity extended even to his name.”
Joshua, after his resurrection will be appointed governor of God’s house and in-charge of God’s court where grievances will be resolved, justice enforced and sentencing executed. RIGHTEOUS rulership will be respected and honoured.
TENTH: GIFTED WITH THE WISDOM OF INTERPRETING DREAMS/VISIONS: Two men interpreted dreams and visions—Daniel of the House of Judah and Joseph of the House of Israel.
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile” (Romans 1:16).
Daniel a Jew, of the tribe of Judah was first to be given the interpretation of dreams and visions. He was given rulership over the entire province of Babylon and in-charge of the wise men, the priests in Babylon. This special gift is given by God to those intimately close to Him. He places them in a powerful and unique role to see and understand God’s wisdom. Upon his resurrection, he will again reveal God’s mysteries to the world.
Joseph, prince among his brothers was given the birthright blessing, hence the double-portion. His two sons: Manasseh and Ephraim were adopted by Jacob and brought into the family as equal members. The younger son, Ephraim was given the leadership over the ten tribes of Israel. This house was first to relentlessly and arrogantly rebel against Almighty God and He eventually divorced them and they became known as Gentiles—simply meaning “of the nations” –not of the covenant family. Joseph was second to be given the interpretation of dreams and visions as the Apostle Paul understood, “first to the Jews(for they protected the oracles of God )and then to the Gentiles (for they departed and in God’s great joy, they returned and were grafted back in). Joseph’s rulership covered all of Egypt and during the great famine, he fed the WHOLE world and brought them into servitude to Pharaoh. He mirrored Jesus Christ feeding the whole world and bringing the whole world into servitude to Almighty God. This vast task will be given to him again as Christ’s rule during the Millennium grows to cover the whole earth.
The twelve apostles will work with both Daniel and Joseph. For this is what the Lord has commanded us: 'I have made you a light for the Gentiles, to bring salvation to the ends of the earth'" (Acts 13:47). Their job is not finished.
The mysteries of God will be revealed to everyone and all will come to know Almighty God intimately. “And many peoples will come and say, ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us His ways so that we may walk in His paths.’ For the law will go forth from Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem” (Isaiah 2:3).
“And the foreigners who join themselves to the LORD to minister to Him, to love the name of the LORD, and to be His servants—all who keep the Sabbath without profaning it and who hold fast to My covenant—I will bring them to My holy mountain and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on My altar, for MY HOUSE WILL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER FOR ALL THE NATIONS” (Isaiah 56:6-7).
FINALLY, JUDGEMENT WILL BE MADE.
When all of God’s creation in heaven and earth have made their choices final, judgement will be made by God Almighty, Jesus Christ and the saints.
“Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!” (I Corinthians 6:2-3)
“Jesus said to them, ‘Truly I tell you, in the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on His glorious throne, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel’” (Matthew 19:28).
“Then I saw the thrones, and those seated on them had been given authority to judge” (Revelation 20:4).
God Almighty will complete His great work through His servants from old all the way into the 21st century. A glorious work is being done and the grand crescendo rests on our near horizon eagerly waiting for the cue.
“Little children, I am with you only a little while longer. You will look for Me, and as I said to the Jews, so now I say to you: ‘Where I am going, you cannot come.’ A new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you also must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are My disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:33-35).
What does that look like?
In John 13, the Apostle John began with Jesus showing his disciples the FULL extent of his love. It began with a demonstration of greatness. “He got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciple’s feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him” (John 13:4-5).
The washing of the feet of the disciples mirrors a state of humility that is associated with selfless even slave-like service to others who come into the home. People sold into slavery and those who have lived in destitution appreciate the purchase of their life. In ancient times, living in a hot, dry climate and wearing open footwear brought in a lot of dirt inside the home. The custom was to wash the feet of those coming inside to keep the dirt from being brought in. The foot washing ceremony instituted by Jesus points to a cleansing that takes place at the entrance before entering God’s home. It is an annual reminder for believers to be the servant of servants and humbly wash each other’s feet before entering a holy place.
The Commander of God’s army later known in the New Testament as Jesus Christ stood before Joshua and identified the first step in cleansing, the removal of dirty shoes. “The commander of the LORD's army replied, ‘Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.’ And Joshua did so” (Joshua 5:15).
The same command was given to Moses by Almighty God. “When the LORD saw that he had gone over to look, God called out to him from within the bush, “Moses, Moses!” “Here I am,” he answered. “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground” (Exodus 3:4-5).
The removal of the foot wear covered in dirt is the first step and the second is the washing of the feet to remove additional uncleanness. God’s holy place is clean, no trace of sin. Coming into God’s holy place is a two-step process. Baptism is the first step and living life in humility and righteously is the second step.
After washing the disciple’s feet, Jesus said, “Do you understand what I have done for you?” (John 13:12b). It is Jesus Christ who initiated the second cleansing step—the washing and removal of dirt from off their feet was a mirror of their spirit walk before God to ensure they remain on the straight and narrow prior to entering His home. Receiving God’s Holy Spirit after baptism makes the full extent of love possible for followers of Christ.
Jesus said, “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord’, and rightly so, for that is what I am’” (John 13:13). God’s faithful body of people have ONE TEACHER, Jesus Christ—the head of the body. The body of the church does not comprise of hierarchical compartments separating one from another but rather, a family. “Don't let anyone call you 'Rabbi,' for YOU HAVE ONLY ONE TEACHER, and all of you are equal as brothers and sisters. And do not call anyone on earth your father, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have ONE INSTRUCTOR, that is, Christ” (Matthew 23:8, 10).
Jesus, as their only Teacher, set the example for his students to do the same for their brothers and sisters who are following Christ. His example taught them to humbly and in righteousness remove the dirt—the misconceptions, misinformation and disinformation from the walk of their brothers and sisters in Christ, so that they remain on the straight and narrow path towards God’s home. Jesus confirmed their understanding of him as their Teacher. He said, “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord’, and rightly so, for that is what I am’. As their Teacher, he added, “I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set an example that you should do as I have done for you.” Then Jesus added, the cornerstone of truth, “I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him” (John 13:16). The disciples are the servants; God Almighty is their master. Jesus Christ is the messenger; God Almighty sent him. Nobody is greater than God Almighty, the Source of all power and life. The understanding Jesus made clear to his disciples was that everyone on earth and in heaven is subject to Almighty God. The mistake Satan and his followers have made is that they believe as a coalition that they can overthrow Almighty God. Their pride and arrogance are the poison that has twisted and darkened their thoughts into a futile rebellion. Jesus concluded, “Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you DO them” (John 13:17). Jesus wants his followers to walk humbly with God (Micah 6:8).
Jesus then prophesied his betrayal as a witness to his disciples that he is the One that God has sent to save them. “I am telling you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe that I am He” (John 13:19). Mankind is easy prey to deception. Even after Jesus had died and rose, he had to prove himself as their Saviour.
“Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, but their eyes were kept from recognizing him.
And he said to them, ‘What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?’
They stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answered him, ‘Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?’
He asked them, ‘What things?’
They replied, ‘The things about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and leaders handed him over to be condemned to death and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel [all twelve tribes]. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place. Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning, and when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him.’
Then he said to them, ‘Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory.’ And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.
When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight… They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together and saying, ‘It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon’” (Luke 24:13-27, 30-31, 33-34).
The witness of Jesus as the Saviour for the Jews, their brothers in the ten tribes and for all of mankind was extensive and complete. It was evident that some of Jesus’ followers hoped that he would rule as their King and Lord then and there, but they did not understand the process of salvation. Paying the penalty for sin made possible redemption through God’s grace and still the important second step—the receiving of God’s Holy Spirit, so that they could learn to walk in God’s way of love to the full extent.
Christ’s death on the cross was yet another example of his love for all of mankind. “Who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, HE HUMBLED HIMSELF and became OBEDIENT TO DEATH—even DEATH ON A CROSS” (Philippians 2:6-8).
The core of Christ is to do the will of his Father. He does not seek to challenge his Father—“did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,” (Philippians 2:6) instead he remains a humble servant, even to the point of being beaten beyond human recognition, shamed and death on the cross. His love for his church and mankind is without a doubt, genuine and eternal. His capacity to love goes beyond the ability of mortals. Only by being filled with God’s Holy Spirit can this sacrificial love be expressed.
It will be both a deeply emotional and humbling revelation for deceived mankind when they learn that Jesus who is God—the Son, willingly submitted to becoming mortal and suffering, so that he could save creation on earth and truly understand the human experience—the weaker vessel and intercede for mankind before God, the Father.
“For this reason, he had to be made like his brothers in every way, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, in order to make atonement for the sins of the people” (Hebrews 2:17).
His sacrifice for his church and all of mankind demonstrates the depth of his commitment for our success and his love, which flows out “wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:18-19).
Christ demonstrated to what extent love can go. “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you” (John 15:12-14).
Followers of Christ are his friends of whom, he gladly laid down his life to save them. His example will be witnessed in another group of people during the Great Tribulation. “Then I heard a loud voice shouting across the heavens, ‘It has come at last— salvation and power and the Kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers and sisters has been thrown down to earth— the one who accuses them before our God day and night. They have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and BY THE WORD OF THEIR TESTIMONY. And they did not love their lives so as to shy away from death” (Revelation 12:10-11).
These followers of Christ will demonstrate their great love for God and Christ as many have done throughout the ages, during the time of great distress. They will not shy away from dying to stand against a powerful coalition of rogue heavenly rulers, powers and authorities who arrive on earth, having been thrown out of heaven, and witness before them to the whole world the testimony of Jesus Christ. In doing so, they will conquer Satan. They will gladly put their life on the line and die, if necessary, to bring truth to the world. They will stand loyal and strong working with God and Christ to awaken people from the spell of deception and in turn, save them. They understand the full extent of loving one another, desiring that all come into repentance, be given grace by God and welcomed into the family of God as a righteous royal, ruling member.
“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” (II Peter 3:9). Christ followers endure patiently because they want to see all of mankind repent and enjoy eternal peace and love.
It will be visually evident who are truly the disciples of Christ because they will do as he did. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). They will exhibit all of the properties of love outlined by the Apostle Paul in I Corinthians 13:4-7:
o Suffers long, patient
o Does not envy
o Does not brag
o Not puffed up, proud or arrogant
o Not rude
o Not self-seeking
o Not easily angered
o Keeps no record of wrongs
o Does not rejoice in iniquity
o Rejoices in truth
o Eager to believe the best in others
o Does not lose hope even when repeatedly disappointed
o Provides the power to endure anything.
The same will carefully help one another, recognizing the vulnerability of being humble God-fearing and God-serving people in this angry and dark age saturated in sin.
They put on the armour of God and without compromise, they seek to apply the wisdom of God in responding to adversity having a mindset that is striving to achieve peace, even when it is not immediate. They will search out medicinal and nourishing words for each matter individually. Peacemakers bring a delightful aroma to our Father in the third heaven, like seeing an exquisite display of golden apples in settings of silver.
Christ came not to do away with the law but to expound on it. The six commands after loving God are all components to how to love your fellow brothers and sisters. Christ brought to the surface the depth of loving one another when he gave the disciples a new command. He said that they should love one another as he loved them. He demonstrated the full extent of loving one another. He came to serve as the servant of all; he died to save all twelves tribes of Israel and people from all nations on earth; he did the will of His Father and spoke only His Father’s words. The Father and the Son work as one to save mankind. Christ’s followers have joined that team and work to awaken and save by living as Christ lived and declaring the testimony of Jesus.
All of mankind have sinned; one is not better than the other. Yet, from out of sin through the work of God’s hands, a rebirth takes place that opens the eyes to the pain on self and others from wickedness. God’s second creation, repentant mortal man on earth, will overcome through suffering and grow into perfection to become a holy kingdom of royal priests.
The New Testament echoes God’s objective for the followers of Christ. “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light” (I Peter 2:9).
Whether Old Testament or New Testament, God’s objective hasn’t changed. “And unto Me you shall be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.' These are the words that you are to speak to the Israelites” (Exodus 19:6).
Christ appearing like a sacrificed lamb, was the only one who was worthy to take the scroll and the four living creatures and the 24 elders sang a new song, “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom of priests to serve our God” (Revelation 5:9-10).
Repentant Old Testament Israel, New Testament Israel and people from every tribe, language and nation will be blessed to be part of a holy kingdom of royal priests.
God will accomplish His work in man forging an unbreakable loyalty to serve and love their Creator, the Source of all power and life and they will never look back. They will discover the full extent of love and embrace it with all their heart, mind, soul and strength and never again will they be turned away from our gracious, enduring and loving Father in heaven.
“For you are fully aware that the Day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “Peace and security,” destruction will come upon them suddenly, like labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you, brothers and sisters, are not in the darkness so that this day should overtake you like a thief” (I Thessalonians 5:2-4).
NO SURPRISE, NO MYSTERY, NO SECRECY. THOSE WHO OVERCOME WILL BE READY.
The disciples asked Jesus about the sign of his coming. He replied, “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark, and THEY KNEW NOTHING ABOUT WHAT WOULD HAPPEN until the flood came and took them all away” (Matthew 24:36-39).
The only people on earth prior to the great flood who were NOT surprised, was Noah, his wife and family. The rest of mankind were oblivious. They were celebrating life and marriage planning the same lifestyle for generations to come.
The reason for their destruction is recorded in Genesis 6:5-6. “The LORD saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain.”
They were destroyed when God cleaned the earth from wickedness and one only family who spent 100 years preparing for the great flood, began the new era. The flood took by surprise the rest of mankind. This same similar situation will exist prior to the return of Christ. What could that time look like?
“When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman… But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring—those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus” (Revelation 13, 16-17). The faithful church is protected during the Great Tribulation, but her churches who keep the commandments—the congregations who don’t preach that the Ten Commandments were nailed to the cross and those who hold to the teachings of Christ following him wherever he goes, will be the victims of Satan’s wrath and the trampling of the beast.
Satan standing on the shore, the boundary line between Wickedness and earth conjures up the beast—a coalition of rebellious and God-hating heavenly rulers, powers and principalities who reside in the place imaged as the raging sea. They are the enemy of mankind identified by the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 6:12. This terrifying and wild beast has seven heads—ruling kingdoms, each kingdom despises the Great King, God Almighty. Written on each head is a blasphemous name like “I AM,” “KINGDOM OVER ALL” or “WORSHIPPED BY ALL” names that declare their supremacy over Almighty God.
Daniel saw this fourth and final beast. “Terrifying and frightening and very powerful. It had large iron teeth; it crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left. It was different from all the former beasts, and it had ten horns” (Daniel 7:7). Each horn images a leader—a king. They are ten kings ruling for “one hour” during the Great Tribulation. These kings were promised rulership a long time ago, likely at the time of Babel when the sons of God in His Holy Council received an inheritance, rulership over the nations. At this time, God Almighty gave himself an inheritance, rulership over the descendants of Jacob (Deuteronomy 32:8-9). The promise to these ten kings will be fulfilled, but for a short time and they will rule along with the beast (Revelation 17:12).
Conflict bubbles and boils within this beastly coalition as three kings are overthrown and a little horn grows. One that is not of royal descent. He is boastful, arrogant and defiant. He is determined to subdue any force that will not surrender.
The victims most likely crushed and trampled would be God’s covenant people who turn to seek their God and obey Him. The little horn known as the Assyrian will not tolerate such a detestable revolt and he will unleash on these people, who form multiple nations into the 21st century his rage to such a degree that many will die while the remainder are thrown into captivity.
The nations of the world will witness the horror, power and force used on these God-fearing nations and conclude, “Who is like the beast? Who can make war against him?” (Revelation 13:4). The whole world will be astonished. They will surrender and follow the beast. “Men worshiped the dragon because Satan had given authority to the beast, and they also worshiped the beast” (Revelation 13:4). Their reward for their submission and service is the captured followers of Christ who serve God. The beast is thought by some Biblical scholars as a physical nation or group of nations on earth, but that cannot be the case since all the nations on earth, except the captives, surrender and worship both Satan and the beast. The nations accept their powerless position and surrender accepting a different Saviour and a rebellious theology.
Satan will rule on earth declaring himself as the Almighty, Supreme God while the little horn—the Assyrian—the Antichrist will rule over the nations on earth offering extended life through their alien technology and superior science all adding to their extensive knowledge in every area known to man. The power these rulers display will dazzle the nations like a magic spell and they will fall into deception without a fight. The myth of worshipping gods will become a reality into the 21st century for the nations and they will come to delight and celebrate this surreal lifestyle. They will consider this leadership as good and plan their future with Satan as their eternal head and the Antichrist as their eternal King of kings and Lord of lords. Corruption in politics, business, and in the service industries will continue. Justice will fall by the way side and oppression will increase. And yet, the nations will not call out to Almighty God for help, despite the global witness of the captives. It is this resolution that triggers God’s wrath against the nations all before the second coming of Jesus Christ; it will be just like the days of Noah. Many people will continue to love sin and wickedness will be their delight.
The captives will remember their God. “Ephraim will be like a mighty man, and their heart will be glad as if from wine; Indeed, their children will see it and be glad, their heart will rejoice in the LORD. I will whistle for them to gather them together, For I have redeemed them; And they will be as numerous as they were before.When I scatter them among the peoples, they will remember Me in far countries, and they with their children will live and come back” (Zechariah 10:8-10).
Their witness will go out to all nations. “And afterward, I will pour out My Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on My menservants and maidservants, I will pour out My Spirit in those days” (Joel 2:28-29).
Mistaken scholars preach the fragmentation and in some cases the decimation of God’s covenant people. They declare that Almighty God, who took these people as His inheritance to rule over them forever has rejected them and they no longer exist as a cohesive body. These scholars will give an account to Almighty God who has heard their falsehood. “Have you not noticed what these people are saying: 'The LORD has rejected the two families [House of Israel and House of Judah] He had chosen'? So, they despise My people and no longer regard them as a nation” (Jeremiah 33:24).
To these naysayers God declares, “‘Only if the heavens above could be measured and the foundations of the earth below searched out, would I reject all of Israel's descendants because of all they have done,’ declares the LORD” (Jeremiah 31:37).
God has a plan for His people and all of mankind. His plans cannot be thwarted. What He says He will do, nothing will keep Him from accomplishing His will. He will bring His people to their knees and in the last days, they will remember Him and turn their hearts sincerely and eternally to Him, their Creator, their King. “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6).
“As I live," declares the Lord GOD, "surely with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm and with wrath poured out, I SHALL BE KING OVER YOU. I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you from the lands where you are scattered, with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm and with wrathpoured out; and I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there I will enter into judgment with you face to face” (Ezekiel 20:33-35).
God will judge His people for their unfaithfulness and godlessness during a time when they felt mighty and strong, suddenly all will be taken away from them. The nations of the world will experience the same, they will witness the attack on God’s covenant people and in fear, surrender to Satan and the beast without a fight.
“I will now bring Jacob back from captivity and will have compassion on all the people of Israel, and I will be zealous for my holy name. They will forget their shame and all the unfaithfulness they showed toward me when they lived in safety in their land with no one to make them afraid. When I brought them back from the nations and have gathered them from the countries of their enemies, I will show myself holy through them in the sight of many nations… I will no longer hide my face from them, for I will pour out my Spirit on the house of Israel,” declares Almighty God (Ezekiel 39:24-29).
Bearing the heavy yoke of captivity and servitude both houses: the Christians and the Jews will repent. Both will turn to their God, together. Israel and Judah will go home together: “‘I will bring back from captivity My people Israel and Judah,’ says Almighty God. ‘And I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it’” (Jeremiah 30:3).
Their Messiah’s return will not surprise them. They will be prepared because they will:
· Recognize how things were during the days of Noah.
· Complete the witness of the gospel to the whole world.
· Humbly wait for their rescue by their God.
· Learn again the meaning of God’s Holy Days which lay out the plan of God for all of mankind.
· Delight in God’s goodness by choosing them again to serve as priests and teachers of righteousness.
· Love the word of God and His righteousness.
The day and the hour will come when God Almighty deems enough time is given for His people and the nations to repent.
His people will not return alone for with them a countless multitude of people from all nations of the world will join them (Revelation 7:9). Satan’s reign over the earth will come to a sudden end. The beast and false prophet will be overthrown and destroyed by the anointed King of kings and Lord of lords.
The world will be forever changed. Deception will be washed and scrubbed from the face of the earth. The sky will be rolled back and the people on earth will see the vast heavenly realm and its dominions. Satan, the father of iniquity was once a guardian cherub in the third heaven given the great honour to serve before the Great God. His beauty was exceptional and his position was envied, yet that was not enough. His pride caused him to fall away and God removed him out of His presence into the heavenly realm where he built a vast empire of rebels selling his theology to the creation there. A battle in heaven still awaits on our near horizon. Satan knows he will fail and be thrown down to earth where he will sit disgruntled on a deteriorating throne. His decaying status will continue to rot. His captivity is assured and a changed body from eternal to lowly mortality is prophesied before he is burned to ashes. The world watching will be sickened having eaten from his fruit.
“Through your widespread trade you were filled with violence, and you sinned. So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones. Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings. By your many sins and dishonest trade, you have desecrated your sanctuaries. So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, and I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching. All the nations who knew you are appalled at you; you have come to a horrible end and will be no more’” (Ezekiel 28:16-19).
A wonderful life is the destiny for all of mankind who call on the name of Almighty God. This evil age will end; glorious light will replace darkness all in God’s time. The saints are preparing now for Christ’s return; they are pilgrims looking for the kingdom whose maker and architect is Almighty God. They will wait for God patiently because they too, want all of mankind to repent and be saved.
“So, Moses spoke to the Israelites, and each of their leaders gave him a staff—one for each of the leaders of their tribes, twelve staffs in all. And Aaron’s staff was among them. Then Moses placed the staffs before the LORD in the Tent of the Testimony. The next day Moses entered the tent and saw that Aaron's staff, which represented the tribe of Levi, had not only sprouted but had budded, blossomed and produced almonds”
The almond tree is the first of all fruit trees to break out of dormancy after a chilly winter and cover itself with life, a showy display of abundant soft pink and white blossoms.
Keil and Delitzsch point out that God uses the almond tree “as a symbol of the swift fulfilment of His word.” Aaron’s staff sprouted, budded, blossomed and produced almonds over-night symbolized the absolute decision of God’s choice that the tribe of Levi work to lead His ministry on earth and they would do exactly that: initiate the word of God, demonstrate it, and teach all Israel God’s law and ways so that righteousness would be produced.
When God chooses people, miracles happen. He chose Jeremiah before he was even conceived to do an important work for Him. He was appointed “over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant” (Jeremiah 1:10). Those kingdoms that would be uprooted would be destroyed and those torn down would be overthrown. And finally, Jeremiah was commissioned to build and plant kingdoms. Jeremiah was young at the time this commission was given to him and he questioned his ability. But, God Almighty assured him. He touched Jeremiah’s mouth. “The hand is the instrument of making and doing; the touching of Jeremiah's mouth by the hand of God is consequently an emblematical token that God frames in his mouth what he is to speak,” Keil and Delitzsch explain. (https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/jeremiah-1.htm)
God confirmed his action by giving Jeremiah a vision. Jeremiah saw the branch of an almond tree. This would not be a mystery for Jeremiah. God confirmed what he already knew. “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled” (Jeremiah 1:12).
“Jeremiah sees in spirit a rod or twig of an almond tree. God calls his attention to this vision, and interprets it to him as a symbol of the swift fulfilment of His word. The choice of this symbol for the purpose given is suggested by the Hebrew name for the almond tree, שׁקד , the wakeful, the vigilant; because this tree begins to blossom and expand its leaves in January, when the other trees are still in their winter's sleep and so of all trees awakes earliest to new life… The figure of the almond rod was meant only to afford to the prophet surety for the speedy and certain fulfilment of the word of God proclaimed by him,” adds Keil and Delitzsch to their interpretation.
The next vision Jeremiah sees is a boiling pot pouring out from the north towards Jerusalem. It is not describing the Babylonian invasion, but one that will take place hundreds of years into the future. God said, “I am about to summon all the peoples of the northern kingdoms. Their kings will come and set up their thrones in the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem; they will come against all her surrounding walls and against all the towns of Judah.” (Jeremiah 1:15-16).
This imagery is a prophecy still unfulfilled—a future, terrifying event that points to Revelation when God Almighty is pouring out His wrath on the rogue heavenly rulers thrown out of heaven ruling on earth over the nations. They worshipped Satan and the beast because they said, “Who can war against them” (Revelation 13:4). “Then I saw three evil spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet. They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty… Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon” (Revelation 16:13-16). The intent of the nations of the world is to take Jerusalem—God’s headquarters on earth, as their sovereign rule. The battle to overthrow the Great God—the Almighty, which began in heaven before the creation of mankind, will rage on earth.
This heavenly battle included luring God’s inheritance—the descendants of Jacob, into serving His enemies—the fallen, rogue sons of God. It wasn’t a difficult task.
The leaders of faithless Israel and unfaithful Judah lapped up the ways of these rogue gods. The desire for power, self-glory, self-direction, self-reliance is what Israel desired when they told God, “We want to be like the nations.” Both houses left their God to worship the gods ruling over the nations because they offered the nations rulership that satisfied the carnal desire for control, self-gratification and unbridled drive for super power status. Servitude to God and living humbly before God was out of the question for both houses of Israel. Hence, corruption filled the highest offices like an open, infected sore spreading across the body untreated.
“The priests did not ask, ‘Where is the LORD?’ Those who deal with the law did not know me; the leaders rebelled against me. The prophets prophesied by Baal, following worthless idols. Therefore, I bring charges against you again… ‘Has a nation every changed its gods? But my people have exchanged me, their Glory, for a god that cannot help them at all! Be appalled at this, O heavens, and shudder with great horror, declares the LORD’” (Jeremiah 2:8-9, 11).
The guilt of the house of Judah and Israel is treason against their King to serve lesser gods ruling over the nations. The grandeur they saw in Egypt and might in Assyria lured them away into a world of taking instead of giving, controlling instead of serving, hating instead of loving.
God let them go and replied, “Go and serve your idols, every one of you! But afterward you will surely listen to me and no longer profane my holy name with your gifts and idols” (Ezekiel 20:39). After each tribe experiences their day in the sun, they will see their glory fade away as others come to steal the lime-light from them. This decaying world does not bring eternal joy, rather all is vanity, fleeting moments that come and go. Only through serving and obeying the Great God, our Creator and Source of all life can eternal joy and happiness be achieved by giving instead of taking, serving instead of controlling, loving instead of hating.
After a time of great distress, both houses will remember their God. “In those coming days,” says the LORD, “the people of Israel will return home together with the people of Judah. They will come weeping and seeking the LORD their God. They will ask the way to Zion and turn their faces toward it. They will come and join themselves to the LORD in an everlasting covenant that will never be forgotten” (Jeremiah 50:4-5). This will happen in the last days.
After they feel the wrath of the rogue heavenly gods that once ruled over the nations, they will remember their God and beseech him earnestly. “Afterward, the people of Israel will return and seek the LORD their God and David their king. They will come trembling to the LORD and to His goodness in the last days” (Hosea 3:5). God will hear them and appoint “shepherds after his own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding” (Jeremiah 3:14).
The lampstand of gold in the tabernacle in the wilderness is the artefact that confirms the survival of the seven churches that is comprised of the twelve tribes of Israel. Though their journey has moved like the tide during times of turbulence and peace, the pounding purified them each protected by the flower of the almond—God’s sure word that they would live.
“Then you are to make a lampstand of pure, hammered gold. It shall be made of one piece, including its base and shaft, its cups, and its buds and petals. Six branches are to extend from the sides of the lampstand—three on one side and three on the other. There are to be three cups shaped like almond blossoms on the first branch, each with buds and petals, three on the next branch, and the same for all six branches that extend from the lampstand. And on the lampstand there shall be four cups shaped like almond blossoms with buds and petals. For the six branches that extend from the lampstand, a bud must be under the first pair of branches, a bud under the second pair, and a bud under the third pair. The buds and branches are to be all of one piece with the lampstand, hammered out of pure gold. Make seven lamps and set them up on the lampstand so that they illuminate the area in front of it. The wick trimmers and their trays must be of pure gold. The lampstand and all these utensils shall be made from a talent of pure gold” (Exodus 25:31-39).
Though the candles flicker today with every effort made by God’s enemies to snuff out the light, God’s word is sure and swift. Soon, God’s inheritance—His people will overcome and light the world, burning brightly never to flicker or fade.
Like the almond tree, God’s leadership is the first of all the different leaders in heaven to bring life out of death and repentance from wickedness into desiring righteousness. Such is the symbolism of the vigilant, wakeful almond tree.