Born again and the Old and New Covenant… Sonship and Adoption
The subject of this Manual is based on Paul’s words found at 2 Timothy 2:15 and along with this counsel, we can add another admonition from Paul taken from Philippians 1:9,10 “to test things which are of consequence.” CLV While the King James Authorized Version words it this way “That ye may approve things that are excellent that ye may be without offence till the day of Christ" In the footnotes of the Companion Bible, it states the word, excellent used here is literally "differ" Dr Bullinger says in the same footnotes on this passage, "We are to test the things and having found them to differ, we must not join them together, but rightly divide them (2 Timothy 2:15)" There is much we should test in our relationship with Christ and others but in this Manual we are primarily concerned with, weeding out error in our doctrines, eliminating “the lies and myths” prevalent today in all denominations, so that we can "fully follow Paul and His sound doctrine and words" 2 Timothy 3:10 Paul also repeats this at 1 Thessalonians 5:21 “Yet be testing all, retaining the ideal from everything wicked to the perception, abstain." The division between the two administrations is only one of the many things we must learn to rightly divide through testing what is said in the scriptures. We “test” what is for us and distinguish it from what is for Israel. We learned in Chapter One that there are two differing ecclesia with two distinct evangels. Now we also must learn the need to divide between dispensations. This is a controversial subject on how many dispensations there really are in God’s Word or in the history of mankind. I want to consider only two in this chapter, the Law dispensation and the Grace dispensation. The Law dispensation began with Israel and Moses agreeing to a covenant with Jehovah which in scripture was likened to a marriage contract with Jehovah as the husband and Israel being the wife. Israel failed to keep the contract and as we discussed in Chapter One Jehovah divorced her. Christ fulfilled the Law Covenant with His sinless life, death, burial and resurrection, ending the Law dispensation. God begins to demonstrate His Grace with Saul of Tarsus seven years after Jesus died. Thus begins the dispensation of Grace.
This then shows us the need to also “test” which dispensation, is being discussed in any given passage as information or truth may change: Israel was in the Law dispensation, being under the law covenant, that was their truth but it was not our truth as Gentiles then nor is it today, in the Grace Dispensation. “To Test” can apply in several ways. We test things we are told by others, measuring it to Gods Word and we test what is in Gods Word whether it applies to us or someone else, also what time period past, present or future. To test things that differ agrees with correctly cutting or rightly dividing Gods words in order to see how and where things that differ fit either for Israel or for us, the Body of Christ. It's like a puzzle we are working on; when we pick up a piece we test it to see if it fits where we think it should. So in our Bible research we test a verse to see where it fits? We ask questions, to who is it written and for what dispensation, time period or age and who the author is. We examine the context, paying attention to the use of small words and figures of speech; all of this is used in helping us to put the puzzle together and this helps us build on our understanding of Gods Word.
So this testing we are told to do is all part of "rightly dividing” and if we do not learn how to do this we will find ourselves confused with words and terms used in the Scriptures. As is the subject matter we are going to discuss in this Chapter. The common expression used today, is that we must be Born Again, so we ask the question, who is this really for?
As we discussed in Chapter One, The Whole Bible is for us to learn from. In it we find information and truths which fit all believers no matter which church or dispensation they are in. These would be Universal truths, such as the Creation account, History and Who our Savior is along with guidance about morals, our conduct, and counsel in dealing with others in life. Then we have Specific truth given to and for different individuals, churches and dispensations. Israel had specific instructions based on their Law Covenant to do with worship, obedience and their every day life. In the Grace dispensation our instructions are not based on law keeping, but ours are based on Grace given to us by God. We also have a different destination from Israel. We have seen the need to recognize the Different or Specific road maps for each church, with maybe the easiest way to understand this principle, is how easy it is for us to recognize the counsel given for individuals! For instance; counsel given husbands differs from that given to wives or counsel directed towards children is different from husbands and wives, also the counsel given to slaves as in Paul’s day. Likewise the Nation of Israel has counsel, different from our counsel given to us by Paul for the Body of Christ.
The New Birth or Born Again WE have been told a believer today is “born again” based on John 3:3. WE need to test this by asking questions. Which Bible book is this term found in and who is the writer of it and to whom is it speaking or written to? This book was written by the Apostle John, one of the twelve Apostles for Israel which is our first clue that this information is not for us but for Israel. Let’s review this passage of scripture in its context. John 3:1-7 “Now there was a man of the Pharisees, Nicodemus his name, a chief of the Jews. This one came to Him by night and said to Him, Rabbi we are aware that Thou are a Teacher come from God, for no one can be doing these signs which Thou are doing, if God should not be with Him…Jesus answered and said to Him, Verily, verily, I am saying to you, if anyone should not be begotten anew, he can not perceive the kingdom of God. Nicodemus is saying to Him, How can a man being a veteran be begotten? He can not be entering into the womb of his mother a second time and be begotten! Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I am saying to you, If anyone should not be begotten of water and of spirit, he can not be entering into the kingdom of God. That which is begotten by the flesh is flesh and that which is begotten by the spirit is spirit, You should not be marveling that I said to you, you must be begotten anew”
Jesus was not talking about heavenly life for Israel and so He was not talking to Nicodemus about going to heaven or that he needed a spiritual rebirth right then as is commonly taught. We learned in Chapter One the heavenly calling was the "secret hidden in God” a secret or mystery until it was given to Paul to reveal it and so that secret of heavenly life would have still been hidden when Jesus was talking to Nicodemus. Remember Paul is not converted until 7 years, after Christ dies. If Jesus had been talking about heavenly life with Nicodemus He then would have revealed this secret and not Paul and that would make Paul a liar. Paul told us it was given to him…to reveal this secret for the Body of Christ. Ephesians 3:1-3 Colossians 1:26, 27
Jesus in His ministry only proclaimed the evangel of His Kingdom to come, on earth! Jesus taught from the Old Testament, the promises and prophecies about His Kingdom. The man Jesus was bound by His Hebrew heritage being born into the nation of Israel as their Messiah. He had to live up to the Covenant and Laws of that nation in order to fulfill it. He would not be able, lawfully to bring in anything not already found in the Hebrew Scriptures. So Jesus, in his reply to Nicodemus, saying "you must be begotten anew” would not have been speaking of going to heaven or of a spiritual rebirth into the Body of Christ as is taught today. This term has been translated as born again or to be born anew. Nicodemus asks, how can a man be born anew? In John 3:7 Jesus turns the conversation from Nicodemus the individual, to what the scriptures taught for Israel the Nation. We need to look at the small word Jesus used in His reply. The word is "you” in that verse, “you must be begotten anew” “You” is in the plural and refers to the national interests of the Nation of Israel and not just of those of Nicodemus.
Another example of this is found at Ezekiel 36:22 “Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD…I do not do this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for MINE holy names sake” Verses 26-29 “A new heart also will I give you and a new spirit will I put within you and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put My spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes and you shall keep My judgments and do them. And you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers and you shall be My People and I will be your God….I will save you from all your uncleanness.”
“YOU” we see speaks of the Nation of Israel and not of an individual. Another example is seen in Matthew 5:14"You are the light of the world." How was Israel the light of the world? They were the keepers of Gods words written on scrolls. His light is His Word. Israel was used to record the scriptures and safeguard them. Today the Light has been passed to the Body of Christ for safe keeping. The Light is Gods Word and when we go home, it will be handed back to Israel once again. The Book of Ezekiel which we just read from is full of promises for Israel which teaches that the Nation will be restored in the Kingdom age on the earth and for this to happen, they must be born anew, born again or regenerated which means to be brought back to life, through the spirit of God. This is of course by means of a physical earthly resurrection of which their own prophets spoke of in the scriptures many times. One reason, most believers do not understand this, is because that they have been taught, at death, a person goes immediately either to heaven or hell. They are taught man has an immortal soul thus they also just like Nicodemus, do not understand the resurrections taught in the scriptures. The doctrine of an immortal soul is a false doctrine and has clouded the truths in the scriptures concerning death and the resurrections. Nicodemas was blind to the scriptures as was most of the Nation of Israel.
To enter this Kingdom on earth, Jesus told Nicodemus "You must be born again" referring to the faithful of Israel, “the just” are guaranteed a resurrection in that Kingdom. This will be the first resurrection on earth after Christ’s advent and which will begin the one thousand year reign of Christ. This is that Kingdom on earth they were taught to pray for in the “Lords prayer.” Matthew 6:9,10 This will be the time of the new birth for Israel. The Israeli saints will be born again, brought forth from the grave through the power of the spirit of God and this then is how the Nation is reborn and this is how this nation inherits Physical blessings along with Spiritual blessings, not in heaven but in that Kingdom on the earth. Daniel 12:1,2 John 5:28 and also please read Ezekiel 37:1-14 of the prophesy of “dry bones” and note Verse 11 “This is the whole house of Israel.”
In John 3:1-7 Jesus spoke of being born anew, through the water and spirit...as Nicodemus could not grasp…being begotten anew. The human birth is through water. The Physical nation of Israel was born through the waters of the Red Sea when Moses brought them out of Egypt. The next birth for them when they are begotten anew will be through the spirit. God's Spirit will regenerate them, in the resurrection from the dead, giving them their new vivified, immortal bodies. The terrestrial glory Paul refers to in 1 Corinthians 15:40 is for the Israeli saints resurrected with a body like Jesus had AFTER His resurrection and BEFORE He ascended to heaven. Ezekiel 36:26,27 Israel will be given by God a new heart and a new spirit capable of righteous living. Water and spirit are used as symbolisms of a birth, of bringing to life as well as a cleansing.
The word vivify in the Greek is “zo’ o poi e’ o” and means Live-Do, make alive or made alive In other words being placed beyond the reach of death or given life within oneself. This is immortality, and is promised to be given to a believer at their resurrections. We do not already have it as is erroneously taught by the religions of the world and sad to say, Christendom. Paul refuted the false belief in an immortal soul at 1Corinthians 15:53 “For this corruptible must put on incorruption and this mortal must put on immortality.” For a list of all the places the word vivify is found, please refer to the index in your Concordance in the back of the Concordant Bible…Page 320.
The nation of Israel produced Christ whose death guarantees the fulfillment of the promise made first to Abram at Genesis 12:3 and then to Abraham Genesis 22:18 “All families of the earth will be blessed through his seed” Christ is the seed coming through the nation of Israel, descendants of Abraham through his promised son Isaac. Christ will in turn bring forth that nation again by means of the spirit of regeneration; this is the resurrection in the Kingdom, on earth. In that Kingdom, Jesus promised them, that they then would have all the powers that Jesus had and more, to perform miracles and signs, worldwide, blessing all the families of the earth bringing them to life in Christ. John 14:12 “he who is believing in Me will be doing greater than these”
Water baptism was a symbol of cleansing for Israel and of re-birth as it ties in to their history. Their first birth was through the waters of the Red Sea as they fled Egypt and then in their becoming the nation of Israel. The symbol of water is carried on down to Jesus day and the requirement for baptism for Israel. A washing or cleansing, repenting from breaking their vows in their covenant with Jehovah. Everything for Israel is tied to a physical reality they knew in relation to their Law Covenant with Jehovah. The Gentile nations were never in a relationship with Jehovah; these details of their covenant have no meaning for us. God only worked with His chosen nation at that time, Gentiles were lost, dead to God. It is only through the Body of Christ that God now works with the Nations, calling people from all the nations; God showing another aspect of His Plan of the ages…Salvation to all through Grace, the opposite of Law. Israel needs a cleansing, from her sin of unfaithfulness; baptism was the sign…the Body of Christ has a spirit baptism.
Baptism for the Body of Christ is a spiritual baptism. 1 Corinthians 12:13 “For in one spirit also we all are baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and all are made to imbibe one spirit.” Paul did not baptize after he began the dispensation of Grace. He states this in two ways “Christ did not commission me to baptize and I am thankful I baptized only a few” 1 Corinthians 1:14-17 Is not this a strange thing for Paul to say if water baptism is required for us or for our salvation? Not strange at all when we rightly divide the evangels. We then can understand how Israel’s water baptism differs from our spirit baptism into Christ. If we will always remember the differences, Israel is physical, fleshly, and earthly while the Body of Christ is spiritual, heavenly. We then will not confuse Israel’s promises of inheriting a literal earthly land in the Kingdom on this earth. While the Body of Christ, through Paul is called to heaven. We are aliens here. “inherently or all along our place is in the celestial realm” Philippians 3:20 “WE are ambassadors for Christ” 2 Corinthians 5:19,20 Ambassadors live in foreign lands representing the government they are a citizen of, but when war breaks out, they are called home. We, whose citizenship is in heaven, with this earth being our foreign land, from which we will be called home before the greatest war of history! When it is time for God to restore Israel to her land and launch Christ’s war against Israel’s apostasy and bring judgment to the antichrist and his allies here on the earth….we will be gone, taken to heaven to fulfill our assignment, joining Paul in reconciling those living in the celestial realms.
Nicodemus was a Pharisee, a teacher in Israel, he did not understand or believe his own scriptures, he did not understand the resurrection. These religious leaders were in apostasy and not understanding their own promises through the prophets. The nation as a whole was blind, because of being, in the Lo ammi state, this was the reason they were unable to understand spiritual things. This Lo ammi state began 400 plus years earlier when Israel was divorced by Jehovah and allowed to go into captivity under Babylon for the 70 years. From that time onward the Nation as a whole was without Gods spirit, guidance and protection as their husbandly owner. Only to individuals in Israel did God give insight, like Daniel and the Prophets which He used to record His prophetic words and Israel’s history. While living in Babylon, the Israelis were susceptible to the false teachings of that pagan Nation and even adopted their false beliefs and this is the reason why the Pharisees of Jesus day were teaching many false doctrines. In Chapter Seven we will “Rightly Divide Truth and Error” and look at some of these pagan doctrines which came straight from Babylon and can be found taught in the Body of Christ today. Paul refuted these doctrines which many are referred to as the Gnostic beliefs.
In Chapter One we discussed the different evangels and the way they are phrased, such as "God's evangel" "My evangel" "The Kingdom evangel” and “The Grace Evangel” Some other small words we also need to test the differences with are in these phrases, "The kingdom of heaven” with “The Kingdom out of heaven” and “The kingdom in heaven” Gods Kingdom with Christ’s Kingdom. WE must separate the kingdom of heaven from the kingdom in heaven!
God's Kingdom: refers to His overall Kingdom, Taking up both heaven and earth. So we see there are two spheres of God’s Kingdom, an earthly and a heavenly. The Kingdom of heaven is the earthly part of God’s Kingdom. Christ is of heaven and He will come from heaven to set up the Kingdom of heaven on the earth. This is always so surprising for me how many believers do not understand this, since at least 90% of the Bible talks of Israel and her promises for this earthly Kingdom and yet Christendom as a whole insists on sending them to heaven with us? The Kingdom in Heaven is for The Body of Christ who, will go to heaven. Christ's Kingdom: refers to His Millennial reign on earth after His advent.
God's evangel is His complete plan for salvation through Christ, which includes both, The Kingdom evangel for Israel on earth with Peter and the other Apostles which Jesus chose in His earthly ministry and The Grace evangel given to the Body of Christ which is Paul's evangel. Paul revealed “the secret” of a body of saints who are called to the heavens. We have discussed why Paul refers to his message as "my evangel" and that only Paul taught the “mystery” or the "secret” which is the Body of Christ with the heavenly calling and this is in part why Paul tells us to “rightly divide and to test things which differ,” which is how we are to separate “OUR” calling from the evangel for Israel, the Kingdom evangel, the Kingdom on earth.
This little word of is so important to distinguish from in and to understand that believers today are not taught of Israel and the literal fulfillment of her prophecies which are yet to come. They read of heaven, in the scriptures and immediately assume it is talking of being in heaven because they have been taught there is only the one calling for all saints, which is to go to heaven if they are good enough.
The subject of the old and new covenants is also misunderstood. The Old Covenant was made with Israel. Deuteronomy 4:13 "He declared unto you His covenant, which He commanded you to perform, even ten commandments: and He wrote them upon two tablets of stone" In this original covenant God promised to look after their welfare in return for their obedience and it consisted of far more than the ten commandments. Deuteronomy 4:40 The first question we might ask is what is a covenant? Definitions always help us to analyze “things that differ” The New Century Dictionary says for Covenant; (covenant means to agree) “An agreement between two or more persons to do or refrain from doing some act; a compact; a contract; in Biblical usage, the agreement or engagement of God with man as set forth in the Old and the New Testament; in law a formal agreement of legal validity”
So simply put, a covenant is an agreement or a contract between two parties, in this case, Jehovah and Israel. Their agreement is called the Old Covenant in Scriptures. The contract consisted of laws and codes of conduct. Jehovah as the Husband promised to provide, protect and care for Israel as long as she kept her side of the contract as a faithful wife. In the account in Exodus 24:3 we can see Moses presented the contract to the people and they agreed to it, saying “All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.” This complete Covenant was thus a contract and is quite lengthy and can be found at Exodus 20-23 they were in covenant and or married to Jehovah. As recorded in the scriptures, Israel’s history shows her unfaithfulness to her Husband Jehovah and after she took other lovers, described as whoredom in the KJAV. This is not sexual immorality but spiritual, the worship of other gods thru idolatry and forsaking the Laws she agreed to keep with Jehovah, He announces His divorcement of her at Hosea 1:9 He also promised to take Israel back and make a new covenant with them. Hosea 1:10,11 Israel would one day be His People again. The renewing of His relationship with Israel is for them in the new covenant as promised. We will go through many of these promises in this Chapter.
The whole book of Hosea is a picture for Israel and for us to understand God’s dealings with them in her unfaithfulness. Hosea was told to “take a wife of Whoredom,” this was a woman from the 10 tribes, named Israel who was in Idolatry. Judah, the name for the two tribe kingdom which were still faithful to Jehovah in their capital at Jerusalem. The 10 tribe Kingdom was in Idolatry. Hosea took a wife from that 10 tribe kingdom whose capital was at Samaria. Hosea is a picture of Jehovah married to faithless Israel.
When Jehovah brought Israel out of Egypt and through the Red Sea, they too at that time were idol worshippers, having adopted the Egyptian gods as theirs. Jehovah married a whore, Israel. She produced some faithful children but most were unfaithful. With this understanding in mind, read Hosea through, it is interesting reading and see how Israel is likened to a wife there as well as in many other places in scripture.
At Ezekiel 16: 32 she is a wife committing adultery, Ezekiel 16:38 Israel compared to a woman breaking wedlock. Numbers 14:34, Hosea 3:3 “And I said unto her, Thou shall abide for me many days; thou shalt play the harlot, and thou shalt be for another man; so will I also be for thee” At Jeremiah 3:1 “They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and become another man’s shall he return unto her again? Shall not that land be greatly polluted? But thou has played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to ME….saith the LORD” Jeremiah 3:8 says “When I got to see that for the very reason that unfaithful Israel had committed adultery, I sent her away and proceeded to give the certificate of her full divorce to her, yet….” NWT Please read the whole of Chapter Three in Jeremiah and you will see the divorce and the promise of her return to Jehovah. In Verse 12 “do return O renegade Israel, is the utterance of Jehovah….I shall not stay resentful to time indefinite.” Jeremiah takes us on to the Kingdom on earth in Verse 17 “In that time they call Jerusalem the throne of Jehovah; and to her all the nations must be brought together to the name of Jehovah at Jerusalem and they will no more walk after the stubbornness of their bad heart.” This is an excellent passage showing Jehovah restoring her and that she will rule over the nations of the world….evangelizing them to their God Jehovah in the person of Christ in the prophetic Messianic Kingdom on earth.
God promises through every prophet of Israel, over and over that He purposes to forgive Israel and take her back at some future time, promising to wait for her and take her back in the latter days. Jeremiah 3:14-18 continues with a prophesy for their future, “Turn, O backsliding children, saith the LORD: for I am married unto you and I will take you one of a city and two of a family and I bring you to Zion; And I will give you pastors according to MINE heart, which they shall feed you with knowledge and understanding. And it shall come to pass; when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days…saith the Lord….they shall say no more. The ark of the covenant of the LORD neither shall it come to mind; neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it neither shall that be done any more…At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD and all the nation shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem; neither shall they walk any more after the imaginings of their evil heart. In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers” We see the call for them to come back to Him. “Return sons of returning, avers Jehovah, for I own you”
Also we find the Prophet Isaiah speaks of her divorcement at Isaiah 50:1 and Isaiah 62:4 “Thou shall no more be termed forsaken neither shall thy land any more be termed desolate…but thou shall be called Hephziabah and thy land Beulah…for the Lord delighteth in thee and thy land shall be married” The name Hephziabah means “my delight is in her” and Beulah means, “married” She became King Hezekiah’s wife after Jehovah restored his health and gave him 15 more years to live. In the third year of the fifteen years given to him, his wife gave birth to Manasseh, who later became Israel’s worst King ever. His name means “forgetting” refer to Genesis 41:51 So was he named, because God made Hezekiah forget his troubles. But it seems Manasseh forgot to rule his people in the ways of Jehovah. The prophecy in Isaiah 62 uses the comparison to Hezekiah’s restoration to health, his marriage, his wife as a small picture of Jehovah and Israel as husband and wife divorced but taken back in marriage again. Israel is in the divorced state now; cast off, lo ammi, not My People, all during the “times of the gentiles” which began with their Babylonian captivity. This is their time of being dominated by Gentile nations and the time of their blindness. Their blindness as a nation will continue until, Christ’s Second Advent.
Jeremiah 50:20 “In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve” This is yet unfulfilled prophecy and reserved for the last days before and into and on the other side of the tribulation. Also, Ezekiel 11:16-20 “Therefore say, ‘Thus saith the Lord God; Although I have cast them (Israel) far off among the heathen, (Gentile nations) and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet will I be to them as a little sanctuary in the countries where they shall come. Therefore, thus saith the Lord God; I will even gather you from the people, and assemble you out of the countries where ye have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel. And they shall come thither, and they shall take away all the detestable things thereof and all the abominations thereof from thence. And I will give them one heart and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh and will give them an heart of flesh: That they may walk in My statutes, and keep Mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be My people, and I will be their God.”
Ezekiel 36:22-38 Verse 23 “And I will sanctify My great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD saith the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes” Notice how the heathen which is the Gentiles or nations are going to learn about God by and through His work with Israel on the earth.
Ezekiel 36:25-29 “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh and I will put My spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and ye shall keep My judgments, and do them. And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be My people and I will be your God….I will also save you from all your uncleannesses” This is an interesting passage notice, “I will sprinkle clean water upon you” this is baptism, another controversial subject. We have settled water baptism is not for the Body of Christ as it is for Israel only. The other area of dispute is of immersion or sprinkling. Max Binney has done a small pamphlet on this subject which is quite good. If you do not have it, contact me for one. Or his daughter at 1-423-442-4564
Zephaniah 3:8-20 starting in Verse 8 we see the time of indignation and work forward to the time of Christ’s rule and the nations referred to in Verse 12 as “the afflicted and poor people” who will be coming to the Lord, showing us that nations and or peoples in these nations will survive the tribulation time period and come to worship God.
Thus we see through all these passages, Israel is the wife. Israel on the earth a physical nation of which we the gentiles had no part in it or her marriage to Jehovah. We have to ask the question, why would any of the promises in the Old Testament made to this literal physical earthly nation of people apply to The Body of Christ in any way, shape or form? Israel is promised The New covenant specifically. In the many promises, she is named, Judah and Israel, and promised to be one nation again. To be the Wife! Even though Jehovah divorces her, He states He will always be for her. Hosea 3:3, 4 He cannot marry another such as the Body of Christ; He would be unfaithful to His wife, Israel and his betrothed bride, The Remnant! God Promises to make a New Covenant with Israel Jeremiah 31:31-34 “Behold, the days come saith the Lord that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt which My covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put My Law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts and I will be their God and they shall be My people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor and every man his brother, saying, know the Lord; for they shall all know Me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity and I will remember their sin no more.”
This is quoted in Hebrews 8:8-12 “For finding fault with them, He saith, Behold, the days come saith the Lord when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in My covenant and I regarded them not, saith the Lord….For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put My laws into their minds and write them in their hearts and I will be to them a God and they shall be to me a People” This is written to the Hebrews, who are the Jews and the information here can not be placed within Paul’s evangel in any way. The only way to do so would be to spiritualize the scriptures, a very dangerous thing to do. Notice also how it refers to Israel waiting for her covenant, which it is still in the future for them as foretold in prophecy, but not for the body of Christ, we have our
Spiritual covenant now, God made it and keeps it for us, we are secure in our calling.
Hebrews 10:16-18 “This is the covenant which I shall be covenanting with them after those days, the Lord is saying, imparting My laws to their hearts, I shall be inscribing them on their comprehension also, and of their sins and their lawlessness shall I under no circumstances still be reminded.” This continues with how it refers to the future with these words. “I will make a new covenant” notice it does not say I have made, The writer of this book lived after Christ died and after Pentecost and he uses the future tense in regards to Israel’s New Covenant. We must make note of these words also, “In the days to come” and “after those days” All of these references point to the future and are yet to be fulfilled. According to these words all of Israel and Judah, Israel the 10 tribes and Judah the 2 tribes will be united as One Nation again, this has not happened yet. This is the complete House of Israel restored. The next thing to note is the differences with the New Covenant over the Old, remember in the Old Covenant, obedience was required for Jehovah's care? While in the New Covenant. Jehovah does it all. "He imparts His law to their hearts and He cleanses them and does not remember their sin”.
Acts 28:27 Also refers to Israel in their Lo-ammi state. "Their heart is stout, their ears are heavy, their eyes are shut, lest they should perceive and hear and understand and Jehovah should heal them." This is why only a few in Israel responded to the Kingdom message. Again we see God dealing with individuals and not the nation as a whole. All through the ministry of Jesus and then in the ministry of the apostles a Remnant was chosen by God, a part taken out of the whole House of Israel. The nation was blind while Jesus carried out His ministry among them. He did not come to restore the nation at that time. He came to fulfill the Law and the prophets concerning Himself. Christ had to die to save Israel and the world from their sins. This was first in God’s order and demonstrated by the Passover celebration. Next was death, burial, resurrection and ascension to heaven to sit at Gods right hand and wait until time to return and establish His Messianic Kingdom on earth. During Jesus earthly ministry He chose a Remnant out of Israel, some, not all in that nation, for that future Kingdom ruling class. Paul refers to this at Romans 11:5 “there has come to be a remnant according to the choice of grace”
Notice Jesus words at John 15:16 “You did not choose me, I but I chose you." God chose those for Jesus and then Jesus picked His apostles, very few in the nation accepted Him because as John 6:44 says "None come to Me unless the Father draws him” Matthew 11:27, Luke 10:22 Israel was still Lo-ammi, and it was not God's time to bring them out of it. Christ came as their Messiah, He was rejected as Messiah and King, and this was God's plan and not a surprise at all for God. God had a secret “hidden in Him for the ages” Colossians 1:26, 27 Ephesians 3:3, 4 and 5:32. So after Christ’s death, the time was approaching for this secret to be revealed. The kingdom was to be heralded first to Israel; the Remnant chosen out of the blind nation thus the foundation was laid for the Second Advent and the Kingdom on earth. Time arrived for the body of Christ to be revealed.
Paul comes into the picture many years later with the "secret” given to Him by Christ. Paul does not preach this secret until he is severed from Israel and her Kingdom evangel; this is possibly 17-20 years after his Damascus road experience. WE find Saul at Acts 13 “severed from Israel” and from that point on called by his Roman name of Paul. After his severance it was then the time to reveal this secret given to him only which is why he referred to the secret evangel as “my evangel” His evangel was for the New administration, the Body of Christ, recipients and dispensers of Grace in this dispensation of Grace.
We have more testimony that it is God Who does the choosing and reveals His truths as Jesus also told Peter in Matthew 16:18 “you see these things because the Father reveals them to you” While the purpose of the parables given was because the nation as a whole should not understand. His disciples asked Jesus “Why do you speak in Parables to them?” Matthew 13:10, 11 He said to them “To you has it been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of the heavens, yet to those it has not been given.” (Remember of heaven is the kingdom on earth) Israel knew their promises in the Scriptures were of a Messiah to come, Who would rescue them from the Gentile domination and set up God’s Kingdom on the earth. They then would rule over the Gentile nations. They did not recognize these promises of certain events would not all happen in chronological order. God understanding human nature probably did this on purpose. It seems the believers always felt the time was close. If they knew then as we now know that the timing for Israel was to be thousands of years in the future, they probably would have been discouraged and also relaxed in their work and discouraged?
There are over 300 promises concerning the Messiah, starting with His birth and through His ministry, death and resurrection. Neither Israel nor the Remnant He chose saw or understand that He had to die. They knew of prophecies of their Messiah arriving with a flaming army putting down the enemies ruling over them. They did not understand these referred to His second advent. 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9 This lowly man, Jesus did not wage the war they were expecting, He did not overthrow their Gentile oppressors thus they did not realize He was their Messiah. It was not time for the Kingdom on earth to be set up; Christ had to be rejected and die first, in order to save all sinners in the world and for God to go into His second stage of Salvation to demonstrate His Grace with us, the Body of Christ and the Grace dispensation a new administration to represent it. All of this planned from before time began. Ephesians 1:3,4
What are the Times of the Gentiles? Gentile domination over Israel is what is meant by the times of the gentiles. Also Jesus spoke of this time in Luke 21:24 “And Jerusalem shall be trodden by the nations, until the eras of the nations may be fulfilled” Eras of the nations or times of the Gentiles…same thing. Daniel while in captivity to Babylon interprets a dream the King of Babylon was given by Jehovah which was a prophecy of each succeeding World power to follow Babylon, who was the first to dominate Israel.
Each succeeding Gentile world power would also be dominate over Israel down to the latter days and then Gods Kingdom would come, rescuing them from Gentile domination and especially the antichrist attempting to wipe them off the earth in the end time. Please read Daniel 2:27-45 What needs to be understood about this prophecy concerning these World Powers depicted by the different elements of the image which stopped with the Grecian Power being split into 4 kingdoms and it then evolved into two with the Roman Empire one of these. But the Roman Empire did not achieve world domination, although Israel was being dominated by the Roman Government in Jesus time. So that prophecy has stopped, it will start up again in the Last Days with the feet and toes, The 10 kings or kingdoms in some sort of alliance, a political Kingdom under the antichrist. Time stops for Israel with her prophecies and her evangel when Paul began his evangel with the exception of Israel’s prophecy for Jerusalem’s destruction at A.D. 70. From that time she was put on hold, until The Dispensation of Grace is over. The kingdom evangel stopped and God then using The New Administration of the secret hidden in God throughout the past eons and only through Paul does God bring in the Body of Christ. We are the Grace Dispensation and it will continue until we are removed from this earth. God then will start up Israel’s clock again. It will be time for her prophecies to begin unfolding where they left off, just as though we had not even been here. The drama for Israel will be played out in that part of the world and in the land of Israel. God will raise up a future remnant. He will cause Jews to return to their land. The temple will be rebuilt, the old worship of Jehovah will resume. The apostate Jew will be working with “the man of Lawlessness” leading Israel into the peace treaty with him which begin the last days. This will be the one seven of Daniels prophecy of the 70 weeks found at Daniel 9:24-27 the one seven is the third and last part of that prophesy, to be fulfilled in the last days after we are called home to heaven. That seven year period of time begins when the “man of lawlessness” signs a peace treaty with Israel. Midway into those 7 years he breaks the treaty and begins warring with Israel, this is said by some to be the “time of Jacob’s trouble” and “the indignation or the time of wrath”, and this tribulation is for Israel as the antichrist seeks to destroy her God’s indignation and wrath will be against those who seek to destroy Israel. Satan will have been cast out of heaven at that midpoint of those seven years, angry knowing he has a short period of time…we read that 42 months which is 31/2 years, the last half of those seven years are given him to wage war with the saints. Revelation 12:7-10, 13-17 and 13:5 All of this leading to the Second Advent of Christ to rescue her and bring in Christ’s Kingdom to be established on the earth, completing the Prophecy found in Daniel 2:27-45 I do not think Jacobs trouble and the great tribulation are the same time period any more…
In Manual two, “The times of Restoration” for Israel, we will go into depth on what I feel are the differences with the time of Jacobs’s trouble and the tribulation time indicating they are different periods of time foretold for Israel. I am now leaning towards, Commander Steedman’s views put forth in the Differentiator Publication years ago…that none of Daniels foretold 70 weeks have yet begun. He felt they would begin after the Body of Christ is snatched away, with all of those 490 years to take place after we are gone. It is a very deep but fascinating study. Rick Farwell has posted those articles on his website. If you wish to begin reading them. www.geocities.com/490/ We will discuss them in depth in Manual Two.
Now many say, “If Israel had repented and accepted Christ, He would have come back and set up the Kingdom and there never would have been a body of Christ!” I cannot accept this teaching, The Body of Christ was “chosen before the foundation of the world” Ephesians 1:3,4 and chosen even before Israel, for her prophecies state “at the foundation or from the foundation.” Matthew 25:34 Israel could not accept Christ, because God had blinded her and because God all along planned to insert, the Secret, Grace Dispensation into the ages. If God had wanted to bring in the Kingdom at that time, all He had to do was unblind Israel, open her eyes, soften her calloused heart, just as He did for those men He chose to be the Remnant church. He allowed them to see, Jesus was the Messiah. They did not do it of their own volition; it is by means of His spirit that eyes are opened. None of us in any age or dispensation come to God on our own nor do we understand spiritual things on our own, the sooner we get this into our heads the sooner we will begin to understand God is in control and this is His program for humanity, you and I are merely the players and He chooses Who He will…for whatever assignment He wishes.
Because of not understanding the different ages and dispensations, most scholars see time in the scripture as one continuance stream and so there are many theories on Daniels prophecy, some teach that these world powers have already come about, with many trying to make them fit into the World powers of our day. When we Rightly Divide and Test things which differ all the nonsense of trying to find the USA in prophecy will end. We will recognize all prophecy in the scriptures mainly concerns Israel in her land and concerns her Kingdom Evangel, her apostasy and with her conflict with her enemies, the nations surrounding her, just as in the days of old. That is still, unfinished business for Israel. God must be vindicated and Israel restored so Gods focus will once again be on Israel’s region of the world.
There are also many different ideas on the time period of Israel’s divorcement, when she was cast off. Some see her in and out of Lo ammi from Babylon on down to Jesus day and then finally cast off at Acts 28:27, 28 while some see her as not being cast off until her rejection of their Messiah, Jesus. Some teach, it happened at A.D. 70 when Jerusalem was destroyed. It seems to me, we must go back to the pronouncement made in Hosea 1:9 of her then becoming Lo ammi (not My People) this began the withdrawal of Jehovah’s protection as He divorced her and so from that time on He was no longer her husbandly owner and her casting off for sure was some years after Hosea pronounced those words and when the 10 tribe kingdom called Israel had left Judah, the two tribe kingdom. Israel was first conquered by Assyria and later conquered by Babylon and when Judah fell into apostasy they two were conquered by Babylon the then World Power. This was the beginning of the times of the Gentiles, Israel no longer a sovereign nation or kingdom and that domination has continued uninterrupted down to our day, this is still the times of the Gentiles for Israel. The prophecies of the new covenant and the remarriage are yet to come. In Gods eyes, today Israel is just one of the nations until the times of restoration.
Israel’s restoration is to happen after a long period of Gentile domination and after losing their temple and all their records and the sacrifices stopped which describe Israel even to this day. Hosea 3:4 “For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king and without a prince and without a sacrifice and without an image and without an ephod *(a garment only the High priest wore) and without teraphim *(idols) afterward shall the children of Israel return and seek the Lord their God and David their King; and shall fear the Lord and His goodness….in the latter days.” The latter days, I believe will be the 490 years of Daniels prophecy leading to the Last Days, end times, the final seven years of that prophecy which reference the time of tribulation and Israel’s greatest apostasy leading to the coming of their Messiah. It is obvious this did not happen at Christ’s first coming but all of this will be fulfilled during His presence and Second Advent for Israel. Daniel 9:24-27
I can find no evidence that Israel has been taken back by Jehovah since her being conquered by Babylon. Those promises are for the future after we are removed and take her on into the Christ’s Kingdom. This to me is why they were blind and calloused in Jesus day, which made them unable to see or hear or to understand spiritual things. Romans 11:8 “What then? What Israel is seeking for, this she did not encounter, yet the chosen (the remnant of Israel) encountered it. Now the rest ( the nation of Israel) were calloused, even as it is written, God gives them a spirit of stupor, eyes not to be observing, and ears not to be hearing, till this very day.” Isaiah foretold this and Paul repeats it in his day. Isaiah 20:10
As we go through this Manual learning to, Rightly Divide Israel’s Kingdom Evangel from Paul’s Grace Evangel, I am hoping this will become clear for the reader. So when we view Israel’s rejection of Jesus as their Messiah it is shown by the evidence that it was because they were blind to spiritual things since the time of their divorcement in Hosea. It then is clear for us; they were not blinded and cast off because of the rejection of Jesus but Israel rejected Him because, of being blind, which began with their divorcement, after the time of Hosea words, you are Lo ammi. God continued to deal with individuals in that nation, but the Nation was cast off, blind to spiritual things. God used prophets whom He called and enlightened them , so using some out of Israel, but not all and this is explained by the phrase; The Remnant of Israel. God chose a Remnant from the Blind Nation to begin the Kingdom church with. He was still divorced from the nation of Israel; she was no longer His wife during Jesus ministry, the scriptures speak of a bride for the lambkin, this has to do with the marriage of the lambkin to the Remnant of Israel and takes place in the future Messianic kingdom on the earth.
The New Covenant with Israel: Another way to understand the New birth for Israel is to see how it is linked with their New Covenant which God promises to make with them in His Kingdom on earth and is still in the future for them. We in the Body of Christ have no part in this new birth or their new covenant which we see is to take place on the earth and for one very important reason. We are told by our Apostle Paul that our allotment is in the celestials, which is in heaven. Paul told us we are to be snatched from this earth and taken to heaven.
So we have discussed how Jehovah made the Old Covenant with Israel, and she was the only nation He made any covenant with or took as His wife and so logically His promises to the House of Israel cannot be transferred to the nations, the Body of Christ as is so commonly taught! God promises to forgive Israel and to reunite them. These are specifically spoken to the House of Israel, which is Israel and Judah and are linked to His words of giving them a new heart and a new spirit. None of these can apply to the Nations who were never in the covenant nor were we ever His wife. The nations have no need to be forgiven for unfaithfulness but Israel does. This is why, Paul states we are a New Administration and he does not say, the old is transferred to a new, but that we are a brand new administration, God goes from Law to GRACE. Paul reminds us at Ephesians 2:11,12 “Wherefore, remember that once you, the nations in flesh who are termed uncircumcision by those termed circumcision in flesh, made by hands that you (gentiles of the nations) were, in that era, apart from Christ, being alienated from the citizenship of Israel, and guests of the promised covenants, having no expectation and without God in the world.”
There is a lot of confusion with the Old and the New Covenant for Israel. Most denominations, in one form or another place the Body of Christ into the New Covenant with Israel or Israel into the Body of Christ. Some throw Israel out of the picture completely and teach The Body of Christ is now Spiritual Israel. For us to say all of this was taken from Israel and transferred to the Body of Christ and that we are the ones remarried and to whom the new covenant in prophecy applies is to spiritualize the scriptures and is in total error. It is even said outright by many, that we are Spiritual Israel. While some other sects claim they alone are spiritual Israel. Like the Seventh Day Adventist…Jehovah’s Witnesses…The Mormons and others who are off shoots of the British Israelism Doctrine which started long ago with the spiritualizing of the church and which has been taught in many different forms since that doctrine began. The Anglo Saxon’s taught of the lost tribes of Israel and that believers since Christ are a Spiritual Israel who are replacing Israel because they believe the nation of Israel is lost forever. If we ignore Israel and her promises past and future in this way along with her place in Gods Kingdom on earth we are guilty of that false teaching. How confusing are all these theories and false notions for the believer, who should ask these questions. Who is right and how do I figure it out? By learning to Test things which differ and to Rightly Divide the Word of Truth, this is what will help us to avoid these errors being taught today and take us right to Paul our Apostle for sound doctrine.
So we have seen in the scriptures how Israel is to be born anew and this is when their new covenant is to be put into effect in the Kingdom on earth, through a marriage union. The new birth will be done in spirit as they will be given vivified bodies, made immortal and their wedding feast or celebration to take place at that time will last throughout the1000 years of Christ’s reign, this is the reward for the faithful. The unfaithful will be saved later but they miss out on the reward of ruling and reigning with Christ and the glories of that Kingdom. They will stay sleeping in the dust and will not be raised until that kingdom time is over, then, they will stand with the unjust in the last resurrection of shame or contempt. Revelation 20:5,6 Daniel 12:1,2
The Old Covenant was based on Law so we should ask, what about the New Covenant with Israel? The first covenant was a fleshly contract with a Nation of people. The Law given them was on stone tablets, stone is hard and unyielding. It was a death dealing covenant. God knew they would fail. The Law in fact did not save them but pointed to their sin and inability to achieve their own righteousness. Romans 5:20 7:6,7 The Law led them to Christ for He alone could live up to it and fulfill it and thus it was nailed to the cross with Him, removing the death curse, it only could give. Jesus Christ born into this world totally human but untainted by sin bought all of mankind out from under the curse of sin and death inherited from Adam and Eve. Paul tells us at Philippians 2:7 Christ empties himself (of his deity) to be born in the fashion of mankind.” With His death, His blood, as the unspotted sacrificial Lamb of God, Who takes away the sin of the world. John 1:29 He, undoing the works of Satan, buys and redeems all humanity from sin and death! This releases them from being captive to the death state but as Paul told us there is an order for the resurrections. 1 Corinthians 15:23 “each in their own order or class” Three resurrections are taught in Scripture. Verse 22 “For just as in Adam all are dying, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” Nothing is said of only those who repent or who accept what Christ did, But a blanket statement made by Paul…all dying in Adam…. which is all of humanity who will be made alive in Christ! Let this beautiful truth wrap itself around your heart and Praise God!
Israel broke the first covenant by not keeping the Law and turning to other gods in worship. They had ignored the Sabbaths for the land of every seven years letting it lie fallow thus in the 70 years of their captivity the Land was given its Sabbaths back, allowed to lie fallow for those 70 years. It seems to me that the law Covenant did not generate love in their hearts for Jehovah, being forced to obey with punishment hanging over ones head will never generate love. The Law was used as a foil to demonstrate Gods mercy and love for His Creation unable on their own to achieve God’s righteousness. But God’s righteousness generates mercy and thus God promises to forgive Israel and remarry her in The Kingdom on earth. First, He provided the Lamb which takes away the sin of the world, Christ. Second, in the Kingdom, He makes the New Covenant with them, it will be a spiritual covenant done by His spirit. Just as their….re birth is done by the spirit as stated in the Ezekiel prophecy, where we read. “God gives them a new heart and a new spirit and HE writes HIS Law on their Hearts.” This covenant also based on Law keeping but this time, God gives them the ability to keep His Law with a new heart and a new spirit, HIS! His Laws in their Hearts as His Spirit will be All within them. It would be impossible for them to do otherwise.
The Physical nation of Israel failed, flesh always fails, and God knows this. He made provision for this failure long before anyone ever failed. Israel in the millennial reign will be born again as a new nation. By spirit...a re-birth. This re-birth will be God's work for Israel thus the verses of; The Potter and His vessel are fitting and very beautiful and promised for Israel. Jeremiah 18:1-6 “The word, which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying. Arise and go down to the potters house and there I will cause thee to hear My words. Then, I went down to the potter's house and behold, he wrought to work on the wheels And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter so he made it again, another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying. O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? Behold as the clay is in the potter's hand so are you in Mine hand O house of Israel."
God illustrated to Jeremiah in the above passage that Israel was a marred vessel. But just as, the marred vessel does not leave the potters hand, make note of this beautiful truth. “The Potter” does not throw the marred pot away but he reworks it until it is acceptable. That is what God is doing with Israel through the centuries of chastening she will become a vessel of honor but only through the new covenant in which God remakes her, “giving her a new heart and spirit.” This is when the Great Potter will display His perfect vessel. That is the promise Paul also shows with God as the Potter in Romans 9:14-33 This is also what Paul is telling us when, he spoke of the time when “God would be All in all” in order for all creation to become righteous, able to live up to Gods standards of righteousness, His spirit must fill us all before this is possible. 1 Corinthians 15:28
Two more little words which differ…Before and From: Ephesians 1:3,4 "according as He chooses us in Him before the disruption or the laying down of the foundation of the world" The Body of Christ chosen before. While Matthew says Israel was chosen from the disruption or foundation of the world. Matthew 25:34 “Then shall the King be declaring to those at His right, Hitherto, blessed of My Father! Enjoy the allotment of the kingdom made ready for you from the disruption or foundation of the world”. Test the differences, “Before” an event began and “From” that same event in history. There is a controversy whether these verses should be translated as foundation or disruption, I will leave you to do a word study of your own on this. The point, I want to focus on are those two little words and how they differ...before and from. If all saints are in the body of Christ as claimed by most denominations and that all saints are going to heaven we have to ask another question. Why so many different words and titles for one church or the same group of saints? These differing titles and words and terms are showing us there are some differences being spoken about. The scriptures are consistent, that there are two different churches and evangels with two different times for there creation by God and that they have two different purposes in Gods Plan of Salvation throughout the ages!
Another question should come to our minds. Why did God choose to create the Body of Christ before Adam and Eve were created and had even sinned? If or unless… God knew sin would enter the world of mankind before He ever created them? Please let it sink into your heart and mind God has been in control from day one of creation and nothing has taken Him by surprise. Everything was planned and or foreknown, laid out in its proper order by God. He had a plan for His creation and He put Plan A into operation from the beginning. God never needed to revert to a Plan B for a remedy for sin or to save mankind.
The Body of Christ chosen by God Ephesians 1:3,4 and as I studied this subject of His doing the choosing, over and over I see in scripture, that He always did the choosing, no one came to Him on their own. God did the choosing with Abram, and Israel, His prophets and even His Remnant with Jesus and of course us in the Body of Christ. Paul stresses “the natural or soulish man can not understand spiritual things” 1 Corinthians 2:14 WE, who believe in Christ, only are able to believe, because of being given, the spirit from God which enables us to do so. 1 Corinthians 2:12 Today, the unbeliever is unable to respond to God or spiritual things because of not having yet been chosen and given the spirit which is necessary to do so from God. God has many stages laid out in the eons through which He is demonstrating Who He is not just for mankind but also for the vast celestial realm. They are watching God’s work with mortals. God gave a example in his choosing of Abram, it is stated that he is the father of believers and all as Paul tells us, for the Body of Christ in spirit, through faith are we being declared righteous. For Israel, Abraham was their Physical father in the flesh. Israel, the physical nation under Law, earning righteousness through Law keeping contrasted with the body of Christ being graced, given a righteous standing. Abram was not seeking Jehovah, he was an idol worshipper when God chose him and made an unconditional covenant with him. Genesis 15. This is how Abraham is our father but later with his descendants God made a conditional covenant with the nation of Israel through Moses with circumcision as the sign. It is always God Who chooses, enabling some to respond to Him. In Israel’s case, as Jesus stated He chose His followers, and they could not respond unless the Father had drawn them to Him and gave them spiritual understanding. For us Paul explains it so eloquently in Ephesians…let read it.
Ephesians 3:1-12 “On this behalf I, Paul the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you the nations, since you hear of the administration of grace of God that is given to me for you for by revelation the secret is made know to me according as I write before, in brief, by which you who are reading are able to apprehend my understanding in the secret of the Christ, which, in other generations, is not made known to the sons of humanity as it was now revealed to His holy apostles and prophets: in spirit the nations are to be joint enjoyers of an allotment, and a joint body and joint partakers of the promise is Christ Jesus through the evangel of which I became the dispenser, in accord with the gratuity of the grace of God which is granted to me in accord with His powerful operation. To me less that the least of all saints, was granted this grace; to bring the evangel of the untraceable riches of Christ to the nations, and to enlighten all as to what is the administration of the secret, which has been concealed from the eons in God, Who creates all, that now may be made known to the sovereignties and the authorities among the celestials, through the ecclesia, the multifarious wisdom of God in accord with the purpose of the eons, which He makes in Christ Jesus, our Lord in Whom we have boldness and access with confidence, through His faith.”
Paul in prison in Rome, states “he is the prisoner of Christ” for us, those of the nations who are in the administration of grace. This secret was given to him and not to Peter, through direct revelations from Christ. “The secret not made known in other generations” unheard of, unknown, untraceable, because it can not be found in the Old Testament writings for Israel because it is not for Israel! It was unheard of, unknown until revealed to and through Paul, our Apostle for the Body of Christ. The term, in spirit, the nations, is plural, this also includes Israel as a nation, because of her lo ammi state. Those called out of all nations, make up the joint body, of Gentiles and Jews, but the new administration does not replace the remnant church nor is Israel in the Body of Christ. What was given to Paul was separate from Israel and was a brand new administration, a spiritual entity. God also called individual Jews into this body but not the nation of Israel or any of the leaders, Jesus chose for the Remnant Church… like the twelve Apostles whose is, the Kingdom evangel for Israel and the Kingdom on earth!
Paul taught the “untraceable or unsearchable riches” which was the “mystery or secret.” It cannot be traced or searched out in any other scriptures before Paul writes of it. This new administration of Grace was “hid in God through out all the past eons” and was only then being made known through Paul, that those called into the Body of Christ which was a Joint Body made up of Jews and Gentiles but also being revealed to those living in heaven. The spirit world consists of many different levels of beings. Paul refers to them as the “sovereignties and authorities among the celestials.” God’s wisdom, mercy and love on display in this new church, whose message is Grace dispensed to and by this new administration. Read Colossians 1:16, 20 26 and 2:10 mentioning these spiritual beings who are witnessing God’s grace in us.
The Body of Christ being a spiritual entity and so our covenant is a spiritual covenant and is in effect now, which it consists of our being “given every spiritual blessing in the celestials” Ephesians 1:3 These spiritual blessings are our spiritual covenant as Paul shows at 2 Corinthians 3:3-6 contrasting the one made in stone with ours as spiritual blessings freely given. The main point to consider is that Israel’s New Covenant is still to come in the future. While we have ours now, the free gift of grace, we did nothing to earn these spiritual blessings and we can do nothing to lose them. This covenant was freely given to us, without our even knowing about it. We are declared righteous as Abram was, even though we in the flesh are not. I couldn’t help but think that we like Abram were also asleep when God made this covenant with the Body of Christ, choosing us “before the foundation of the world.” We did not have to agree to it, we knew nothing of it. God seals us with the earnest of the spirit. God does the sealing, the choosing and the justifying. These are all included in our spiritual blessings in the celestials and are ours right now. We do not earn them, or wait for them. The spirit of God within us is crying “Abba Father” and it enables us to recognize God is our Father, our Creator and our Saviour is Christ. The next step is ours, we need to study God’s words written to and for us through our Apostle Paul, so that we can then be educated as to what God in Christ has done for us and how our blessings are different from Israel’s, we then, like Abram merely say “amen.” which is the same as saying, so be it...Lord. This is believing God!
It is only through a study of the letters (epistles) written to us by Paul from God and with the aid of the Holy Spirit that we come to understand who we are in Christ and what these spiritual blessings are and of our allotment which is in the celestials and not on earth with Israel or vice versa. This is why we must test things which differ. Our allotment is Christ’s allotment in heaven and our expectation is promised to shed these bodies of humiliation and we will find ourselves changed into the image of God, with a vivified glorified body.
What are all of our spiritual blessings in the celestials? We are declared righteous, we are justified in the flesh, we are indwelt by Christ, we are given the earnest of the spirit…an earnest is a guarantee to us, that a place in heaven with Him is guaranteed. We are sealed, we are sanctified. We are under no condemnation for any failing we may do here and now. WE are said “to have died with Christ and were buried with Christ and raised with Christ and are seated in the heavens with Christ” in spirit. We have been “given sonship”. We are “ambassadors for Christ” here and now while on this earth offering conciliation to the world as recorded at 2 Corinthians 5:19-21 Can we think of anything else we might need, a piece of land here on earth? No I think not! The only thing we need and yearn for is to be given our new bodies and to be free of this body of humiliation, to be out of this evil age we live in and to find ourselves with Christ, clothed in our new Glorified body just like His.
Let’s review these Covenants which differ: We can see some comparison with our covenant with the promise made with ABRAM with His being declared righteous without the Law, Abram was put to sleep while Jehovah passed through the offering. In those days when a covenant was made, an offering was split in half and the two parties walked between them, this sealed the covenant. Jeremiah 34:18-20. Like a handshake was used in our country or customs but in today’s world we have a written contract and both parties better read the fine print before signing it. Jehovah made the covenant with Abram while he was sleeping, this shows that Jehovah God Himself was the only one bound to that covenant and that He would see to it that the covenant was kept. He took the whole contract onto Himself. Genesis 15:9-18 Later, God changes Abram’s name to ABRAHAM and makes again this promise with him in which He asks for circumcision to be a sign of it. Genesis 17:4-14 Circumcision set Jehovah’s people apart from those not chosen. This was still an unconditional covenant even though Abraham agreed to be circumcised. Jehovah was bound by the first one to see it accomplished, even if Abraham failed or if the nation to come from him failed. Jehovah was bound to His promises to Abram. We could say that covenant was grandfathered in? No matter that Israel would fail, God would still bring it about! This is demonstrated in how that Abraham and Sarah when very old and past child bearing years, considered dead at 99 and 90 years of age. God makes them alive again, able to make a baby. This promise of a child, through which the promised seed would come, kept by Jehovah not Abraham, unable on his own to do so.
Within Israel’s history we then move forward to the Mosaic Covenant made with Israel. The people agreed to the terms and regulations of the Covenant of Law with its blessings through obedience along with its curses if they broke it. This was a conditional covenant based on law keeping with both parties bound by it. But God goes one step further, as He is bound by the first covenant made with Abraham and so He promises to take Israel back, even though she is unfaithful, He promises to cleanse her of her sins and to write His Law on their hearts, to marry her again in the Kingdom on earth which Jesus taught his disciples to pray for. This should make it clear who the New Covenant referred to in the Old Testament is for and who it will be made with and it is not the same covenant Paul speaks of for the Body of Christ. We are adopted into God’s family and receive our own spiritual covenant and blessings now which are to be kept separate from Israel’s promised New Covenant which is to come about in the millennial kingdom on this earth.
Sonship and Adoption: Israel is the "sonship" because of their covenant relationship with Jehovah. Read Exodus 4:22 Hosea 11:1-4 Paul tells us this at Romans 9:1-4 " The truth am I telling in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience testifying together with me in His spirit, that my sorrow is great, and unintermittent pain is in my heart---for I myself wished to be anathema from Christ for my brethren, my relatives according to the flesh, who are Israelites, whose is the "sonship" and the glory and the covenants and the legislation and the divine service and the promises: whose are the fathers and out of whom is the Christ according to the flesh, Who is over all, God be blessed for the eons. Amen!” Note, covenants plural…God is not through with Israel…shame, shame on those who teach that He is! They are seeking to rob Him of the Glory He will receive through His work with that nation on this earth bring all nation to reconciliation!
From this sonship Israel strayed and became "the prodigal son" found in Luke 15:11-24 also "the lost sheep of the house of Israel" Mathew 10:5,6 15:24 For them to enter the Kingdom of God and enjoy their sonship again, they must be "begotten anew or born again” through the spirit. John 3:3-8 and Ezekiel 36:22-38 This term sonship in the Israeli Bible books applies strictly to Israel and concerns their earthly salvation and allotment in a future day of restoration. Isaiah 66:7-9 Ezekiel 36:22-38.
Now we can look at, Adoption or son placing “h uio the si’a” this means: “legally into the place belonging to a son.” Galatians 4:5-7 “we may be getting the place as a son. Now seeing that you are sons, God delegates the sprit of His Son into our hearts, crying Abba Father!” Ephesians 1:5 “designating us before for the place of a son” Gentiles who never had sonship and who were aliens, without hope and without God in the world. Acts 14:16 “God, who in bygone generations leaves all the nations to go their ways” By His grace through faith, we receive the adoption of sons and are made members of God's family. Ephesians 2:19-22 “Consequently, then, no longer are you guests and sojourners, but are fellow citizens of the saints and belong to God’s family, being built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, the capstone for the corner being Christ Jesus Himself, in Whom the entire building, being connected together is growing into a holy temple in the Lord: in Whom you, also are being built together for God’s dwelling place, in spirit”
Test the different words; first Paul speaks of an entire building of God which again is Gods overall family, his complete Kingdom taking in both, on earth and in heaven. Then Paul said in Whom you, also, always watch for those little words which connect one thought to another sometimes switching from one subject to another in this case, note the words, also and you. So he went from speaking of Gods entire family to a part of it, the body of Christ with the words, you also are. He is telling us, that we are a spiritual temple where God’s spirit dwells. Israel still looks to the day when her literal physical temple will be rebuilt in Jerusalem and the ruling saints will govern from it. Then in the Day of God which follows the Day of the Lord, and after the Millennial reign of Christ and the great White throne judgment we see that “the holy city new Jerusalem descending out of heaven” Revelation 21:1,2 This city will come down to the earth from heaven. That will be the home of the bride/wife/Remnant of Israel, this celestial city is what Jesus referred to when He said to his apostles, “I go to prepare a place for you.” John 14:2 We must recognize that Paul never refers to that city in relation to the Body of Christ; it would seem to me if we also were to be in it. Paul would have told us. We must let go of the mind set, taught to us from our youth on because of attending some sort of denominations that all saints go to heaven! The scripture do not support that. We will discuss this further in Chapter Three of this Manual. Let’s continue on with our sonship through adoption.
Romans 8:15, 23 “For whoever are being led by God’s spirit, these are sons of God…For you did not get slavery’s spirit to fear again but you got the spirit of sonship, in which we are crying Abba Father! The spirit itself is testifying together with our spirit that we are children of God. Yet if children, enjoyers also of an allotment from God yet joint enjoyers of Christ’s allotment if so be that we are suffering together, that we should be glorified together also. Paul alone speaks of "sonship" by adoption and the salvation with an allotment of glory in the heavens Philippians 3:20,1 “For our realm is inherent in the heavens, out of which we are awaiting a Savior also, the Lord, Jesus Christ, Who will transfigure the body of our humiliation to conform it to the body of His glory, in accord with the operation which enables Him even to subject all to Himself.” Notice the phrase Paul uses, “we are awaiting a Savior also” that little word, also, which implies someone else is waiting for their Savior. Yes, Israel also waiting for His return to the earth to rescue and redeem them while we wait to be called and snatched from this earth to meet with Him in the air.
In The Kingdom of God, He has a big family, made up of those living in the heavens composed of the Spirit world and of Humanity here on the earth. He chose the Physical nation of Israel to demonstrate the standard set by His Righteous Law through, these “are the sonship” and He chooses The Body of Christ to demonstrate His Grace through for mankind and to the celestial beings. For humanity who could never in the flesh live up to Gods righteousness, we are adopted into His family and given sonship. Both realms are in Gods family with each given a specific calling and place in that Household of God, placed in it through Christ’s shed blood to bless others and to be blessed.
The Israelites saw Jehovah’s power and might when they witnessed the many plagues in Egypt brought by Jehovah, aimed at putting down the false gods of the Egyptians. Watching as the Red Sea parted and allowed them to escape Pharaoh Armies, and watching those armies drowned as God closed the waters after Israel passed through safely. As they traveled through the desert they were led by a pillar of fire by night and a cloud by day. Moses strikes a rock giving them water. Manna fell from heaven fresh every day to feed them. Their sandals did not wear out. The people saw fearful displays of Gods power and many signs of His care and love for them and yet they could not keep the law and they could not be faithful, they continually failed. Nothing caused or enabled them to be faithful. Not Gods mighty Power or fear of Him caused them to love their Husbandly owner. It seems just the opposite as living in fear or under a dictatorship never generates love, the Law was a dictator. God knew this, His covenant was a demonstration of a Righteous Law that no man except Christ could live up too, that is why the Law is said to be death dealing. God showed them through their sacrificial system for sin that He would provide a way out of the condemnation of the Law and of the sin and death inherited from Adam.
We need to understand these people were not indwelt by Christ or the spirit of God and so it seems without Gods spirit upon or within, we humans are unable to believe and or obey even in the presence of His powerful signs. They had miracles and signs and the Prophets and Priests who told them what to do and when and who also were there to enforce the laws. These people later demanded a King, which God granted to them, very few were good kings as most led them astray. The spirit of God came upon those who God chose to prophesy and to record His words. Again this shows, without Gods spirit, a person cannot respond to spiritual things even those of us with the spirit do not recognize the complete plan of God for the ages and this spirit within us does not make us perfect in the flesh, we still err and sin daily. The spiritual blessings given to the Body of Christ are unconditional. God does it all for us through Christ. We have been placed in Christ and this takes care of all of this for us, we do not do it ourselves. We are declared righteous before God, right now. Israel is still waiting for her New Covenant and for God to grace and bestow His mercy on them by giving them their righteousness.
God is demonstrating through the Body of Christ the opposite of the Law and of God’s power enforcing the Law. Grace from God gives life through the indwelling of Christ. We were chosen before the foundation of the world and called to heaven. This is all God’s doing, we do not earn it or ask for it. WE are a picture of His future work with Israel in the Kingdom and I have to ask, if He freely graces us in this way and promises to grace Israel in the Kingdom, writing His Law on their hearts, forgiving them, taking them back in marriage. What of the unbelievers, who He has not yet called, how could they be given any less? What is an unbeliever, just someone without the spirit of God enabling them to believe? How do we get the spirit? God gives it.
This brings us again to the question of who does the choosing. We have seen it is God. The term, Free Will and our deciding on our own to follow Christ are not founded in scripture. The denominations teach we choose to serve God and at our accepting Christ we then receive these spiritual blessing which give us the indwelling…the sealing…the earnest of the spirit….etc. Yet we have seen through the scriptures that they have it backwards or the cart before the horse! Without the spirit from God we cannot believe, we believe because we are chosen…plain and simple. So the question should be, not who chooses but when does God choose us, thus giving us these spiritual blessings? For the past few years, Vance and I have wondered when exactly it is, that we receive the indwelling. We all have been taught it is at the point of believing but as I just said…how can we believe first with no spirit to help us to do so? That is where the unbelievers find themselves. We have some thoughts on when we receive the earnest of the spirit, to share here and welcome any comments on them. I think this may be something we cannot prove conclusively but we have had some questions come to our minds concerning some of the things Paul says and wondered if we are given hints or clues so I will add our thoughts here for your consideration.
Ephesians 1:13,14 tells us of receiving the sealing of the spirit. What was a seal in those days? A seal was a symbol of security placed on pouches or letters and on things like tombs, keeping others in or out, etc. Paul first mentions our sealing in 2 Corinthians 1:22 “Now He Who is confirming us together with you in Christ, and Who anoints us, is God, Who also seals us and is giving the earnest of the spirit in our hearts.” Ephesians 4:30 “And do not be causing sorrow to the holy spirit of God by which you are sealed for the day of deliverance.” These are just a couple of the “spiritual blessings” bestowed upon the Body of Christ referred to at Ephesians 1:3 How do we cause the Holy Spirit sorrow? By allowing ourselves to be deceived by Satan’s lies and myths and not holding to our God ordained sound doctrine through Paul and not recognizing the spiritual blessings freely given in grace.
Sealing for the believer is a sign of security, I can not find where the circumcision saints were sealed. Circumcising was the outward mark or visible sign of belonging for that nation. The circumcision saints did not experience this spiritual blessing, they were not sealed and so some did fall away as the physical sign did not prevent this for them. The 144,000 chosen out of Israel’s 12 tribes, it is said are going to be sealed and protected through the tribulation time period, there is no mention of the sealing of the Pentecostal saints other than Jesus did say those who were His, He would not lose and this pertained to the Apostles whom He chose for His remnant church. Read of the 144,000 at Revelation 7 and 14
We are sealed by the earnest of the spirit which is a down payment, like today in Real Estate when purchasing a property. An earnest payment is required which is a pledge that in the future; the complete payment will follow. In our case in the spiritual realm, it’s the pledge of our expectation, and not a hope. Israel hoped to be in their Kingdom on earth, their faithfulness was a requirement. Not so with the Body of Christ. Our sealing, and the earnest of the spirit, is the guarantee of the future deliverance from these bodies of humiliation at the rapture and that we will be given the new bodies which will then be the payment made in full and we will then be filled to the brim with God’s spirit.
So we asked the question at what point in our life does Christ choose us to be in the Body of Christ. Paul tells us at Ephesians 1:4 “We were chosen before the foundation or disruption of the world” and it is interesting his words at 2 Timothy 3:14,15 where Paul in speaking to Timothy he said “from a babe you were acquainted with the scriptures” Let’s examine this verse with the Greek word used “babe” which is “breathoss” Tracing this word in research shows this to mean “in the womb or at best on the breast” and referring to only about the first week after birth. Another word in that statement to Timothy, we wanted to understand was the word “acquainted” which means, to inherently know or to know all along. In the Greek, inherently, is “Oida” and there are two different words for know and the second and a different word for know or knowing is acquired knowledge and in the Greek that word is “gno si s” so this is then acquired or learned knowledge while Oida is inherent knowledge.
Inherent is defined by the dictionary as “to exist permanently and inseparably as a quality, attribute or element…to belong intrinsically” Or to know all along, this is inbuilt or indwelt and the other word, Gnosis, is acquired knowledge or the learning process and of being taught. Now, the questions we are having with this in seeking to understand what Paul meant with the use of this word inherently about Timothy as a Babe, the scriptures were known by him inherently so in this verse Paul is referring to inherent knowledge…to inherently know which is to know all along. This is not acquired knowledge from learning since a babe would not have acquired knowledge. A babe is not able to read and or learn all the scriptures, so we asked, how could a babe in the womb or at one week old inherently know the scriptures?
Now I realize some explain this to mean, His mother and grandmother read the scriptures while he was in the womb and this is how he knew them. I do not discount that this is beneficial for a child in the womb. But, without the spirit from God that child in the womb would not understand or inherently know the scriptures. The key here it seems to me, is that it is the spirit from God which inherently knows the scriptures. The Holy Spirit dictated them or breathed those scriptures. Paul stated they were inherent in Timothy as a babe. Thus we asked the question, are we given the earnest of the spirit in the womb or at our birth? It seems this is when we are chosen and this is why we then are able to recognize Gods Word when we hear it and that Christ is our Savior and Lord later in our life by means of the spirit within us, never by our flesh or with our soulish nature.
Paul tells us at 2 Timothy 3:18,17 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” The word translated inspiration in the Greek is “theopneustos” and literally means…God breathed…..All scripture is God breathed. The indwelling spirit given to us from God, breathes in Gods Words; this is our life giving breath from God, our spiritual breath! Just as our physical body needs oxygen to live our indwelling spirit needs Gods Words to live, to breathe, to be awake, to grow and mature in truth, it needs God’s words.
So we find this verse interesting, as it seems to indicate that Timothy was already chosen in the womb or in the first week of his life. Now we next added into this research, something else Paul said in regards to his own calling at Galatians 1:15,16 “Now when it delights God, who severs me from my mothers womb and calls me through His grace, to unveil His Son in me that I may be evangelizing Him among the nations” Now why would Paul use this term; severs me from my mothers womb, if it was not that he recognized he had been chosen then. God had intended him for the office of an Apostle while in his mother’s womb and severed him at his birth; obviously Paul did not know this until after God opened his spiritual eyes to recognize this. God arranged the outcome of his life? This is different from when Paul tells us he was severed from Israel. It seems to me, that Paul did not believe his being saved, or chosen began on the road to Damascus or would he not have said, God chose me when I was at such and such an age and or God chose me on the road to Damascus? Again note that Paul on that road was not seeking Christ, he was not repenting of his rejection of Jesus. It was Christ, Who came to Saul and forcibly graced him and caused him to recognize Him as the Lord. As Saul, the Pharisee, he thought he was zealous for Jehovah and the Law and earning his own righteousness and thus he was persecuting those followers of Jesus believing them to be heretics.
These passages lead us to believe that we are chosen in Christ while in the womb and thus would seem to indicate that we have the indwelling spirit from birth and so this then is why spiritual things would be attractive to us and when hearing Gods Word being read or taught at home or in a church our spirit would respond to it, since that Word is filled with those God Breathed words. Paul speaks of those who are chosen, happening upon salvation and coming to a realization of the truth. By his own testimony He recognized with his experience on the Damascus road what had happen to him in his mother’s womb. Lets read 2 Timothy 2:10 “Therefore I am enduring all because of those who are chosen that they may be happening upon the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with glory eonian.” Paul says…the chosen happen upon the salvation…they are already chosen so already saved. The happening upon is, understanding what God had already done for us and so Paul also adds to this at Colossians 1:9 “Therefore we also from the day on which we hear, do not cease praying for you and requesting that you may be filled full with the realization of His will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding”
My only thoughts on those who profess to be believers and yet reject the truth of Gods Word are, that these are the soulish or carnal believers of which Paul spoke of many times. They are thinking with only their fleshly or soulish heart and not the spiritual heart. I find it unfathomable for any believer, Graced in the beloved to continue to believe in the God defaming doctrine of Hellfire. Why do so many, when shown the possibility of it not being true, turn on us and will not even research it. Angry instead of being happy to learn unbelievers will not be tormented for eternity but will also one day be saved and glorify God. Instead they vehemently fight for the doctrine of Eternal Torment, holding onto revenge, hate and a punishment that out weighs the crime. These are human, soulish emotions and are not God given Grace, nor the spiritual understanding of a God of Love and mercy. They forget they are no better than the unbeliever; we all are born in sin and fail daily. Why would we not want the unbelievers to also be shown grace and be given the ability to believe just as we have been? We did not come to God on our own; if we had, our salvation would not be Grace, but we would have done something to earn it, but then of course the denominations teach that they do earn it and so they think they have chosen all on their own to serve God and this seems to inspire a self righteous attitude towards the unbelievers in the world.
To not have this Grace in our hearts, would be carnal indeed and I have no other explanation for the hard hearts that cling to the doctrine of millions doomed to suffer eternity in a mythical place of torment. We all must recognize what the issue really is. It is not our own salvation, but God receiving the Glory due Him as our Creator and our Savior. He receives the greatest glory from the worst of circumstances and the worst of sinners reconciled to Him. His Grace extended to the most vile of His creatures does not make Him a weak God but shows Him to be the Most High God of Love in all the Universe. Nothing threatens His sovereignty. He makes all evil into good as only He can and will do! God as Creator owns everything, why would He allow anything or anyone to be lost or stolen from Him by an inferior being such as the adversary or the will of humanity?
Hellfire or the theory of punishment in a mythical, underground world was believed in Babylon and also before her by the many other pagan nations. The Israelites became contaminated with this doctrine during their 70 years of captivity in Babylon. When we study the history of the Jews we will find after their release from Babylon, many did not want to return to Jerusalem, they liked where they were living. This I believe is why Peter went to Babylon…to herald the kingdom of Jesus Christ to the Jews living there.
From those years living in Babylon, many of their pagan teachings became part of the Jewish Talmud and so it became corrupted. The Talmud is like a Civil Book of rules or etiquette which the Rabbis use. A second Talmud has been found dating from that time of Babylonian captivity. It is corrupted with Babylonian beliefs. I will put a copy of one section of the corrupted one in Chapter Seven which relates to the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus, a favorite passage of the Hellfire teachers, not understanding Jesus was not teaching Hellfire but ridiculing the Pharisees for their belief in it! Hells origin comes from the pagans and not the scriptures. This is why we find reference to it by only Jesus! Jesus did not teach anything outside of the Hebrew prophets and scriptures so he would not have been instituting a new doctrine of punishment as claimed by the Hellfire lovers, he exposed the Pharisees for the false teacher that they were, they were teaching hellfire and other myths adopted from pagan religions and philosophies.
That parable was directed at the Pharisees who were standing in the crowd listening to Jesus, who were clothed in their purple robes, fitting the description Jesus gave of the “rich man” and they knew exactly who He was talking about…them! Jesus placed them in their very own mythical place of torment and the beggar in the parable placed in Abraham’s bosom, the beggar depicting the common men of the Israel, and were chosen to be the Remnant church for the Kingdom, and who were replacing the Pharisees, the religions leaders of Israel. Jesus ministered to the poor, starving in spirit as a result of those religious leaders who had not been instructing them with Gods word but instead with lies and myths. Jesus places the common man in the place of honor, Abraham’s bosom, which is where the Pharisee had placed themselves. This is why the Pharisees hated Him so and sought to kill Jesus as He exposed them over and over for the hypocrites and liars that they were. The Pharisees also taught, if Israel would become moral or good, then their Messiah would come and establish the kingdom and they used Hellfire to scare them into obeying them, the Pharisees, not God and being moral, sound familiar?
How sad that the Body of Christ today is carrying on in the tradition of the Pharisees of Jesus day, blind to the truth of God’s Grace and His Plan of the ages to bring about the salvation of All. They are blind to the fact that God will be glorified through the saving of the unbeliever and the wicked. He only will receive His full Glory with the complete Reconciliation of the Universe. This vindicates God as He lives up to His own righteous standard of justice and mercy. “Creation subjected to vanity….involuntarily” Romans 8:18-25 It is God Who has subjected all Creation to evil in order for it to understand good and evil, love and hate, teaching us to appreciate the good and what Gods love is. For God to lose one person would be a failure. God does not fail. Instead the denominations hold dear many of these false doctrines from Babylon, the mother of false religion. The church today is steeped in her pagan doctrines, practices, traditions and holy days. In Paul’s day, he refuted the many lies and myths taught by the Gnostics, the pagans and even those who would not give up their Jewish customs and traditions, which I will elaborate on further in Chapter Seven of this Manual.
A closing thought about Israel’s evangel and their commission for the Kingdom on earth.
After Christ was resurrected, He met with the eleven and other disciples in the mountain and told them. “He would be with them until the conclusion of the eon” Matthew 28:20 This is of course still a future promise for after Christ returns. Christ will then have arrived for the second time. But the eon Christ is referring to is the next eon, which has in it the 1000 years reign of Christ. Those who were listening to Him then are now dead, sleeping in the dust, waiting to be raised after His advent in the raising of the “just” class. He will be with them throughout that eon, they will be ruling and reigning with Him from Jerusalem on this earth. The words of Jesus at Matthew 28:19,20 are prophetic for the Kingdom eon or age after His advent. They understood this and this is why they never baptized in “the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” They continued to baptize in the name of Jesus, using John’s baptism for repentance. Bullinger makes some interesting notes on this future baptism. He points out “it says in the name of…which is singular…and not names of as plural, as of three individuals. The name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit make up the One God.” Also, in that time period. Israel will be evangelizing the nations of the world, fulfilling Matthew 24:14 These will be Gentiles, not needing Johns baptism but the new baptism will be fitting for Gentiles as they come to know God in the person of the Son, Christ and they will also be witnesses of the Holy Spirit’s power as it will be operative with signs and miracles, bringing them to faith and their Creator.
A. E. Knoch points out in his commentary on this passage in Matthew 28:18-20 “This account is principally concerned with the rejection of the kingdom. How fitting that it should close with a preview of its establishment in the coming eon! The place is significant. Satan took Him to a high mountain to show Him the kingdoms of the earth. The transformation was on a mountain. The place speaks of His exaltation. This will not be realized until He comes in glory. He has not yet taken His great power. Revelation 11:17 The apostles never went out to all nations. On the contrary, Peter was opposed when he went to the proselyte Cornelius. Acts 11:3 They never baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. They used the titles of Christ intelligently when they baptized. They used “Jesus Christ” in baptizing Israelites, “Lord Jesus” for the Samaritans Acts 8:16 They never used “Christ Jesus” the title of His present heavenly glory. They never used the formula here given because they knew that it was reserved for the future kingdom proclamation. They never discipled the nations as such. The Lord was not with them till the conclusion of that eon, but left them soon after, when He ascended. This commission cannot be carried out until His return in power and glory to bless all nations through His people Israel.” That will be the next eon, in which the Messianic Kingdom of Christ will rule on earth.