The following Scripture passages are offered to aid beginning fellowships. The readings and commentary for this week are more in line with what has become usual; for the following will most likely be familiar observations. The concept behind this Sabbath’s selection is the veil of separation precluding spirituality.
For the Sabbath of April 12, 2014
The person conducting the Sabbath service should open services with two or three hymns, or psalms, followed by an opening prayer acknowledging that two or three (or more) are gathered together in Christ Jesus’ name, and inviting the Lord to be with them.
Lest you be wise in your own sight, I want you to understand this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written, "The Deliverer will come from Zion, He will banish ungodliness from Jacob"; "and this will be my covenant with them when I take away their sins." As regards the gospel, they are enemies of God for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers. For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. For just as you were at one time disobedient to God but now have received mercy because of their disobedience, so they too have now been disobedient in order that by the mercy shown to you they also may now receive mercy. For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all. Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and how inscrutable His ways! (Rom 11:25–33 emphasis added)
Lest you be wise in your own sight, I want you to understand this mystery—the mystery Paul wanted the holy ones at Rome to understand was that natural Israel (the biological and theological descendants of the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) could not collectively come to God, could not understand Scripture, until the fullness of Gentiles came to God. This would mean that the natural descendants of the patriarchs were without free will: they could choose, in modern references, to be Orthodox or Reform or not to practice any form of Judaism, but they could not “choose” to come to God even when they thought they were; even when they believed they were godly, holy.
What Paul wrote is profound, but very much under appreciated by greater Christendom. For if an Orthodox Jew has been prohibited from coming to God—from having “life” in the presence of God, what the prohibition against kindling a fire on the Sabbath (Ex 35:3) represents—then the theological veil that comes from the partial hardening of the minds of Israel dates back to Moses …
If a partial hardening of the hearts and minds of natural Israel could prevent this firstborn son (from Ex 4:22) from understanding Scripture, how then could this firstborn son (firstborn as Ishmael and Esau were) be entrusted with the oracles of the Creator (Rom 3:2), and thereby faithfully transport across time and cultures what they could not and cannot understand?
Since we have such a hope [the ministry of a new covenant], we are very bold, not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face so that the Israelites might not gaze at the outcome of what was being brought to an end. But their minds were hardened. For to this day, when they read the old covenant, that same veil remains unlifted, because only through Christ is it taken away. Yes, to this day whenever Moses is read a veil lies over their hearts. But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. (2 Cor 3:12–16)
And when did Moses put this veil over his face?
When Moses came down from Mount Sinai, with the two tablets of the testimony in his hand as he came down from the mountain, Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone because he had been talking with God. Aaron and all the people of Israel saw Moses, and behold, the skin of his face shone, and they were afraid to come near him. But Moses called to them, and Aaron and all the leaders of the congregation returned to him, and Moses talked with them. Afterward all the people of Israel came near, and he commanded them all that [YHWH] had spoken with him in Mount Sinai. And when Moses had finished speaking with them, he put a veil over his face. (Ex 34:29–33)
Throughout the history of Israel, a veil separated Israel from Moses; i.e., from understanding what Moses wrote. Figuratively, the veil of the temple—between the Holy of Holies and the Holy Place—separated Israel from God, with this veil symbolized in the veil that covered Moses’ face. The high priest, once a year [on Yom Kipporim] entered the Holy of Holies, thus stepping behind this veil and becoming for a day as Moses was, when he entered into the presence of the Lord, and as Christ Jesus was when crucified then raised from death and received by God as the reality of the Wave Sheaf Offering, thereby entering a tabernacle not constructed by human hands, entering with the blood atonement needed being His own blood, not that of bulls and goats.
The analogy Paul sought to establish is that the ministry of spirit, which will have Israel being the nation circumcised of heart by spirit and not the nation circumcised in the flesh by the hands of men using sharp knives, tears down the veil that separated Israel from God and thereby permits all who are born of spirit to enter into God’s presence as Moses did, with the reign of Death extending from Adam to Moses (Rom 5:14) who ended Death’s reign by entering into the presence and rest of the Lord (Ex 33:14).
The preceding is convoluted: Moses, born of no-Name, was in type of Christ Jesus and of the Elect in whom Christ dwells while they still live physically. Moses was naturally born into the household of his natural parents, but he was reared in Pharaoh’s household, Pharaoh then being the human king over all of Israel and over those human persons who were not Israel but who also dwelt in the land representing Sin … Pharaoh was a type of the Adversary who reigns over all sons of disobedience, including those who identify themselves as Christians but who are not numbered among the Elect.
Who the Pharaoh was when Moses was born is not easily determined or identified, nor should he be identified. For if identified, he would be named. His daughter would be named. And Moses would be named as the son of his daughter, thereby adding a human identifier as a prefix to Moses’ name when none would be appropriate since Moses represents in his person all of circumcised-of-heart Israel as Abraham represents in his person all of circumcised-in-the-flesh Israel.
By ancient Egyptian custom, the son of an important person was identified by the name of the person followed by the suffix <Mose>, meaning /born/ or /born of/. But Moses, in type, was the son of the Lord; was a type of all sons of God. Thus, the important personage to whom Moses was son was the Lord, who repeatedly refused to give His name when asked: I Am who I am, a declaration of presence. And the linguistic determinative YHWH was not nor is now a naming noun. Judaism has the good sense to not attempt to pronounce this linguistic determinative (determinatives were never pronounced), but ignorant Christians, particularly those in the Sacred Names Heresy, lack good sense; thus in bastardized utterances of the determinative, they drive potential converts far from Christ Jesus, doing to the Jesus Movement more harm than good, while preparing themselves for the lake of fire through teaching when not called to teach.
Again, Moses in his person represents the firstborn son of the Lord as Isaac in his person represents the son-of-promise born to Abraham, with disciples born of spirit being Isaac:
Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise. Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. For it is written, "Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear; break forth and cry aloud, you who are not in labor! For the children of the desolate one will be more than those of the one who has a husband." Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise. But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to spirit, so also it is now. But what does the Scripture say? "Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman." So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman. (Gal 4:21–31 emphasis added)
When disciples are figuratively Isaac—they cannot be literally Isaac, nor is natural Israel of Hagar—then Christ Jesus represents Abraham, with Abraham’s journeys of faith [a first and a second journey: Genesis chapters 12 and 22] equating to Jesus’ journey of faith into the creation of His Father, the Logos who was God [Theos] and who was of/with [pros] the God [ton Theon] in primacy [arche] (John 1:1). This one, ’o Logos, created all things that were made, including the earth and everything on the earth (vv. 2–3) before this one who, “though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a things to be grasped, but made Himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men” (Phil 2:6–7), entered His creation as His unique Son (John 3:16).
Jesus did not raise Himself from death; nor did the God [Theos] of Abraham, the God [Theos] of living ones (Matt 22:32) raise Jesus from death. No! Not at all. The God of dead ones raised Jesus from death. The God concealed by the physical creation from Israel (see Eccl 3:11 and translate the passage for oneself) raised Jesus from the grave. The deity concealed in and by the determinative YHWH raised Jesus from death. And because of the veil Moses placed over his face, the veil that symbolically stood between Israel and the glory of the Lord, Israel never understood that its idol of monotheism prevented this nation collectively from coming to Christ, and today, prevents this nation from understanding the oracles of God that they did not faithfully transport across time—
If Israel, now Judaism, had faithfully transported the oracles of God across the generations between Moses and the present, every Jew and every Christian would understand that the physical things of this world preceded and reveal the invisible spiritual things of God. Thus, there would be no question that another Passover liberation of Israel will occur; there would be no question that another prophet like Moses would arise from the ranks of Israel—and would again rise from the ranks of Israel a second time, this second time being the ministry of the two witnesses, foreshadowed by the ministry of Moses and Aaron.
When inscribed on two tablets of stone, the so-called Royal Law is physical and pertains to the flesh: to those things that have outer surfaces and mass. But when inscribed on two tablets of flesh, the heart and the mind of the person filled with the spirit of God, the Royal Law is spiritual and pertains to the inner person, the spirit of the man/person [to pneuma tou ’anthropou] in the soul [psuche] of the person. Circumcision of the heart pares away stubbornness, central to the partial hardening that came upon Israel at Mount Sinai.
In the gold calf incident, Israel gave its face to humanity’s rebellion against God, thereby in themselves becoming the personification of disobedience … the personification of the Law comes through disciples, having the Law written on hearts and placed in minds, keeping the Law, thereby becoming living expressions of the Law. Likewise, the personification of Christ comes through His disciples in whom the spirit of Christ [pneuma Christou] dwells having the mind of Christ and enacting those things in this world that Christ Jesus would have done. The personification of Sin comes through humanity, being humanly born consigned to disobedience (Rom 11:32), doing those things that seem right and good (as well as those things the person hates about him or herself), thereby following the natural course of this world …
Israel as the firstborn son of the Lord bears to the Elect a relationship similar to Ishmael’s relationship to Isaac, and Esau’s relationship to Jacob. Thus, Israel as firstborn must either cover itself with the blood of the Passover lamb or perish when the Lord “extends His hand yet a second time to recover the remnant that remains of His people” (Isa 11:11), a recovering that will cause Israel to no longer remember its exodus from Egypt (Jer 16:14–15; 23:7–8).
Before the Second Passover liberation of Israel, when a person—even a Christian not born of spirit—does what seems good to the person, he or she remains a sinner, separated from God by a veil that conceals the glory of God from the flesh, a non-physical veil typified by the physical veil that Moses put over his face, this non-physical veil constructed of stubbornness woven into a tapestry of self-righteousness … the person who sincerely believes he or she is right in what the person does will not change what the person does; hence, the Sabbatarian Christian who strives to utter the name of the Lord in bastardize Hebrew will not cease doing so, but will continue to believe that salvation comes through physical utterance, a belief that is of white witchery.
The Sabbatarian Christian who places importance on sound (how a word is pronounced) places importance on a physical thing, not on a spiritual thing. Plus, what does John’s Jesus say:
Jesus answered them, "Do not grumble among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. It is written in the Prophets, 'And they will all be taught by God.' Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me—not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh." (John 6:43–51)
In this present era, no one can come to Christ unless the Father draws the person, and Jesus will—because the Father has drawn the person from this world by raising the person from the dead (John 5:21)—on the last day raise the person up by giving to the person a glorious body, the second half of John 5:21 … both the Father and the Son must raise a person from death before the person can enter heaven, with the Father giving life to the previously dead inner self of the person and with the Son, on the last day, causing the perishable flesh to be exchanged for an imperishable body: “I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable” (1 Cor 15:50).
It is error to teach that the perishable flesh puts on immortality, something I have written in the past, and something that seems reasonable based on logical deductive reasoning drawn from plain statements.
The Father gives life to the inner self of the person that presently dwells in an earthly house, the perishable fleshly body of the person. Once the Father gives this life to this inner self, the inner self is glorified, that is has indwelling eternal life, but has this glory in a perishable fleshly body that will NOT be glorified. Rather, on the last day [of the seven endtime years of tribulation for the firstfruits, but of the short while following the Millennium for the general harvest of humanity] the glorified Christ will give to His Body and His Bride glorious new bodies of imperishable spirit, bodies like His own, bodies like the Father gave to Him when the glory He had before the Creation (John 17:5) was returned to Him. Therefore, it isn’t a person’s fleshly body that is glorified: the person receives a new body, a new house, one of heaven that can come and go as the wind does here on earth, with this new body appearing like the inner self of the person, not necessarily like the outer self. Thus, this new body will not have gender or ethnic characteristics, the reason why the fleshly body will not be glorified, or changed to spirit.
Sabbatarian Christendom is divided and moving in opposing directions, with the crowd leaving the teachings of 19th and 20th Century pundits who were without understanding, knowing nothing about the High Sabbaths [Ellen G. White] and knowing nothing about spiritual birth [Herbert W. Armstrong]; yet teaching as if they had knowledge and wisdom. The majority of Sabbatarians are gravitating towards the Sacred Names Heresy, which will have them placing importance not on the cleanliness of the inner self [the inside of the clay cup] but on the movement of the tongue and the opening and closing of lips, attributes of the fleshly body as the penis is an attribute of the fleshly male body. Thus, the Sacred Names Heresy is indirectly a continuation of the teachings of the 1st-Century Circumcision Faction, with this Heresy treating the tongue as if it were a penis, a subject that I shall here back away from because of obvious implications.
The Sacred Names Heresy commits fornication with the Adversary, with no offspring ever born of this fornication.
The person conducting the Sabbath service should close services with two hymns, or psalms, followed by a prayer asking God’s dismissal.
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"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."