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 God is not trying to save all now.
For the Sabbath of April 26, 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)
Again, same head citation as last Sabbath: for as long as the Adversary remains the prince of this world, the prince of the power of the air, greater Christendom will continue to be of the Adversary and not of God. The fullness of the Gentiles has not yet come to God—and those that did come, have come are contaminated by the beliefs and values of this world. Today’s Christians are spiritually as Israel was in Egypt:
Will you judge them, son of man, will you judge them? Let them know the abominations of their fathers, and say to them, Thus says the Lord [YHWH]: On the day when I chose Israel, I swore to the offspring of the house of Jacob, making myself known to them in the land of Egypt; I swore to them, saying, I am [YHWH] your God. On that day I swore to them that I would bring them out of the land of Egypt into a land that I had searched out for them, a land flowing with milk and honey, the most glorious of all lands. And I said to them, Cast away the detestable things your eyes feast on, every one of you, and do not defile yourselves with the idols of Egypt; I am [YHWH] your God. But they rebelled against me and were not willing to listen to me. None of them cast away the detestable things their eyes feasted on, nor did they forsake the idols of Egypt. (Ezek 20:4–8)
Are we to judge Christians, letting them know the abominations of their father, Satan the devil, that old serpent who has deceived the whole world (Rev 12:9), with Christians being no exception? And are not Christians within greater Christendom children of the Adversary?
See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know Him. Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when He appears we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who thus hopes in Him purifies himself as He is pure. Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that He appeared to take away sins, and in Him there is no sin. No one who abides in Him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen Him or known Him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as He is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God's seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother. For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. (1 John 3:1–11)
The person who sins by transgressing the Commandments cannot be one with Christ. The person cannot be the temple of God; cannot be a living stone in the heavenly temple; cannot be individually and collectively the Body of Christ. Oh, the person can self-identify him or herself as a “Christian,” but this would be akin to calling Sunday the Sabbath as is the practice of Latter Day Saints.
It doesn’t matter what the person decides about coming to Jesus—in this era, salvation comes to a person through the person having been drawn from the world by the Father. The person makes no decision for Christ … so-called “decision theology” is a teaching not of either God or Scripture. Rather, an infant son of God is as a human infant, who made no choice about being humanly born. A human baby neither chooses his or her parents, nor chooses when or where the infant will be born. All choices made are by the parents. The infant lives because of what his or her parents did.
As a human infant has two parents, the spiritual son of God has two parents: the Father and the Son, with the Father being in the Son so that the Father and the Son are one spirit [pneuma] as Adam and Eve were one flesh … the Greek linguistic icon <pneuma> represents moving air or deep breath as opposed to shallow or resting breath. As such, pneuma would translate into Latin as spīritus, representing the breath of a person or of a god. Thus, as Elohim [singular in usage] breathed into the man Adam’s nostrils and Adam became a nephesh, a breathing creature, God the Father breathed His breath [pneuma Theou] into the last Adam’s heart [a euphemism for the inner self] and the human man Jesus the Nazarene became the firstborn Son of God the Father (as opposed to the firstborn son of the God of Abraham — Ex 4:22). As such Christ Jesus became the First of many firstborn sons of God, with all firstborn sons of God represented in analogy by the early barley harvest in ancient Judea, with Jesus being the Wave Sheaf Offering and with the remainder of the harvest to be waved before God on the Feast of Weeks [Pentecost] in the form of the two loaves of bread, baked with leaven and made from barley beaten into fine flour.
Because the story of the creation of Adam is an analogy—is the shadow and type—of the story of the spiritual birth of Jesus, the earthly ministry of Jesus followed by His death and resurrection is the reality foreshadowed by the story of the creation of Eve, who doesn’t receive her own breath of life, but receives Adam’s breath when a rib is taken from Adam and used for her creation. Thus, in Adam was the breath of Elohim [again, singular in usage] and in Eve was the breath of Elohim, having come through Adam …
In the man Jesus was the breath of God, pneuma Theou, the spirit holy [pneuma ’agion]; thus the Father as a spirit was/is in the spirit of Christ [pneuma Christou] that is, in turn, in the spirit of the man/person [to pneuma tou ’anthropou] in the soul [psuche] of the person, with the spirit that is in another spirit being the head of the other spirit. Thus, God the Father is the Head of Christ, who is then the Head of His disciples, with the spirit of the person being the head of the soul and by extension (because the soul is housed in the fleshly body), the head of the fleshly body.
For various doctrinal reasons, many self-identified Christians refuse to believe that a disciple is a son of God, as in an actual son, having God as the disciple’s parent. Those Christians who hold to a triune deity believe in a closed godhead—the Alpha [A] configuration of deity. These Christians believe that human sons of God are not really sons, but are only figuratively sons. They deny Jesus, and deny the possibility of spiritual birth.
Jesus said of Himself that He was “Α” and “Ω” (Rev 22:13), with the beginning closed godhead, figuratively triune in shape [A in shape], being supported by two legs; by two deities, ’o Logos who was Theos and who was pros ton Theon. But this is where the creation story begins, not ends. Moving from physical to spiritual, the man Jesus who was before He entered His creation as the unique Son of Himself one of the two supporting legs—this man Jesus when glorified assumes the position of the squatting female ready to give birth [Ω] … God is not a prude. Christians, though, are historical prudes that have turned away from the flesh with its attributes and desires, not at all wanting to openly discuss outward circumcision or childbirth or menstrual blood.
There is little imagination needed to see the Greek omega uncial as a woman squatting in childbirth, with the indwelling of Christ Jesus giving spiritual birth to all in whom He dwells in the form of His spirit [pneuma Christou], His breath or breath of life.
If the Father doesn’t draw the person from this world, and if the person hasn’t learned from the Father rudimentary principles of holiness and righteousness, again, repeating the point for pedagogical reasons, the person simply cannot come to Christ Jesus, with the principles of holiness and righteousness including but not limited to keeping the Commandments.
But the Father isn’t at this time in the business of saving humanity … at this time, the Father is more interested in saving angels; in eliminating the ideological vestiges of rebellion; in bringing to a close the Adversary’s rebellion. For to defeat an idea or concept is much more difficult than defeating an army, the proof of which is the number of Confederate battle flags still flying in the United States of America. A war was lost, but the principles undergirding the War Between the States remain ideas that haven’t died.
The Adversary’s rebellion against God began with one angel judging God, determining for himself that those things God did were good. No disagreement existed. The rebellion was concealed by unanimity, and the rebellion spread, with the anointed guardian cherub telling angels some form of, You have good minds, God didn’t create junk. You can determine for yourself what is right and good, thereby becoming like God, the greatest compliment you can give God. And the rebellion spread undetected and undetectable for as long as all angels agreed with those things God did. But at some point, iniquity was discovered in this anointed cherub. The rebellion became known to all, with the fight being over the principle of determining right from wrong for oneself as expressed in top-down or bottom-up governance: could angels rule themselves, the central metaphor underlying democracy. The rebels said, Yes! And in the timeless heavenly realm, this rebellion produced instant gridlock that resulted in a rent opening in heaven and as blood and water spilled from the man Jesus’ side when pierced by the spear, the substance of heaven poured through the rent to form the Abyss, the bottomless pit … speculation, yes, but educated speculation based upon the Adversary’s lack of creativity. If a thing has worked for the Adversary in the past, he does the same thing again when facing a similar situation. Thus, the account of the temptation of Eve—her seduction—gives the Elect a fair idea of what the Adversary said in his deception of a third of the angels:
But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." (Gen 3:4–5)
Until the Adversary introduced to angels the concept of judging God, of doubting God, all angels would have obeyed God because that was the thing to do. All angels would have obeyed God without questioning—because God said it, angels did it, whatever it was. But following iniquity being discovered in an anointed guardian cherub, the two-thirds of the angels that didn’t join with the Adversary in rebellion had, nevertheless, been exposed to the concept of judging God, of questioning God, of bottom-up governance, of God taking too much upon Himself, what Korah told Moses and Aaron (Num 16:3). Thus, after the war in heaven was won by God, the battle flag of the Adversary was cast into the Abyss, where the Logos, who was God and who was with the God in primacy (John 1:1) created all things physical, including Adam and Eve. He then permitted the serpent to tempt Eve as this anointed cherub had tempted angels, and Eve had been set up to fail by her husband:
So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. (Gen 3:6)
The Lord said nothing to Adam about not even touching the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil: Adam added to the Lord’s words the concept about not touching the tree:
Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that [YHWH] God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God actually say, 'You shall not eat of any tree in the garden'?" And the woman said to the serpent, "We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, 'You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.'" (Gen 3:1–3)
What the serpent heard when Eve answered his seemingly innocent question was Adam’s addition to what the Lord had told Adam:
And [YHWH] God commanded the man, saying, "You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die." (Gen 2:16–17)
And when the serpent heard Eve say that they [the man and the woman] were not to even touch the tree, he knew that he had them; for Eve would not die if she touched the tree. She would not die even if she ate from the tree; for Adam’s obedience covered [garmented] both Adam and his wife. Thus, what the serpent told Eve was true, but not the truth. Eve didn’t die when she first touched the tree then its fruit, picking its fruit and eating … Adam saw his wife eat forbidden fruit. Nothing happened to her. And he ceased to believe the Lord; so he ate when Eve offered to him the fruit he had specifically been commanded not to eat. And when he ate, sin—unbelief of God—entered the world, and with sin, death.
The Adversary’s battle flag was firmly planted on this earth: he was determined to vindicate himself. And the earth with humanity on it became a demonstration of competing and conflicting ideologies; for to defeat an ideal, the ideal must repeatedly be shown false, invalid, destructive. Hence, the history of humanity as received by endtime disciples.
In this present era, human persons must choose to rebel against the Adversary by exercising voluntary obedience to [of] God if they hope to escape the confines of space-time. But to ensure that seeds of rebellion are sown inside the Adversary’s administration over this world, the Father draws and Jesus calls the Elect, who are not given a choice about obeying God. Because of the indwelling of Christ [of the spirit of Christ in their spirit], the Elect will closely imitate Christ Jesus, wearing in this world the garment of His righteousness, a.k.a. grace.
When the Elect receive glorified bodies, they shall judge angels, not those who have never sinned, never judged God, but those who succumbed to the blandishments of the Adversary and determined for themselves right from wrong. These angels are presently under the sentence of death, but glorified saints shall sit as an appellate court to consider the justification of individual sentences of death. In most cases, saints will confirm the death sentence, but there would be no reason to judge angels if there were not exceptions concealed by the Adversary’s rebellion. It will be the saints’ task to find and validate the exceptions.
But it is the concept of adding to the words of the Lord that needs further addressed; for how could Eve, not hearing the words that the Lord spoke to Adam for herself, know that Adam had added to the Lord’s words. The serpent knew. Adam knew and in his mind was justified for doing so—if he could keep Eve from even touching the tree, she wouldn’t be eating from the tree. But in adding to the Lord’s words, Adam gave to the serpent an opening the serpent exploited: if Eve touched the tree and did not die, she would then doubt everything Adam said about the tree. She would eat and not die for her unbelief/disobedience was covered her husband’s obedience.
Adam set himself up to fail when he added to the words of the Lord …
Christendom set itself up to fail when it, too, added to the words of the Lord, added Luke’s Gospel and the Book of Acts as well as three epistles [the Pastoral Epistles]. And while it could be argued that both Mark’s Gospel and Matthew’s Gospel are additions, both Gospels hold up spiritually when closely read, with Mark’s Gospel being the easier to justify … the Jesus of Matthew’s Gospel is not the man who was born to Mary, but the indwelling Jesus that gives spiritual life to the Elect; for Matthew’s Gospel contains fictionalized elements that convey truth. From what tall mountain can all of the kingdoms of the earth and their glory be seen (Matt 4:8)?
In this world, Jesus had little credibility; in this world, the Elect have had and will have little or no credibility. After all, why should the Adversary endorse rebellion against him?
Before the Father delivers a person to Christ for Him to call the person, justify the person, and glorify the inner self of the person through spiritual birth via the indwelling of Christ, the person simply cannot come to Christ. No evangelistic effort can get the person to come to Christ: the person cannot come even though the person has allegedly accepted Jesus as his or her personal savior.
The evangelistic ministries of greater Christendom all originate in additions to the word of God, additions of the sort the first Adam made. In human reasoning, it isn’t logical for God not to cast a broad net and catch as much of humanity as He can—
The concept that God is not only allowing but is the author-of an on-going demonstration to show the failings of democracy and of all transactional economies is alien to orthodox Christendom. For God, salvation isn’t a problem; isn’t something that is either mysterious or magical. Salvation is receipt of heavenly life, coming in the form of the indwelling breath/spirit of God [pneuma Theou]. Thus, the Father can raise from death whomever He chooses, giving to the inner self of the person His breath of life, which for the person is a second breath of life, the spirit holy [pneuma ’agion].
To be born again or born from above is to receive a second breath of life, the breath of life that raises from death the inner self of the person … eternal life is the gift of God (Rom 6:23) in the form of the indwelling of Christ. People are not humanly born with immortal souls.
Most of what is taught by Christian ministries cannot be supported from Scripture … again the following must not be forgotten or quickly dismissed, it doesn’t matter what the person thinks about Christ or how badly the person wants to be a Christian; it doesn’t matter what the person previously believed about God, unless the person is drawn from this world by the Father and taught by the Father—until the Father draws the person from this world—the barrier of circumcision prevents the person from entering into (from becoming a living stone in) the spiritual temple of God.
The physical reveals and precedes the spiritual—and as no uncircumcised person could enter the physical temple while it stood, no person uncircumcised of heart can enter the spiritual temple of God, with entering the temple being what it means to be a Christian; for disciples born of spirit are the temple of God (1 Cor 3:16–17; 2 Cor 6:16), with the inner self of the disciple being analogous to a Levitical priest that served in the physical temple.
The vagaries of space-time versus timeless heaven permits Jesus, crucified on the First Unleavened in the year 31 CE , to actually die for His disciples while these disciples remain sinners (Rom 5:8), a reality that uses time and space-time as a tool to bring the past into the present—the Father will teach the spiritual infant to walk uprightly before Him so that when Jesus is crucified for the person (again, an event that occurred in the 1st-Century CE, long before endtime disciples were conceived), this son of God will strive to walk in this world as Jesus walked in this world, with Jesus walking as an Observant Jew.
So no ambiguity exists: the Father comes to know a person and predestines the person to be glorified while the person still lives in a physical tent of flesh … the flesh, the fleshly body, isn’t the person; the inner self consisting of the spirit of the man/person [to pneuma tou ’anthropou] in the soul [psuche] of the person constitutes the inner self that will be glorified through the indwelling of Christ; i.e., by the spirit of Christ [pneuma Christou] penetrating the spirit of the person as a husband penetrates his wife when conceiving offspring. And in this manner, the glorified Christ is the last Adam.
As the Father raises the dead (“‘For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom He will’” — John 5:21), the glorified Christ will give to those inner selves that the Father has raised from death [raised from death by drawing the person from this world and delivering the person to Christ Jesus] glorified bodies as the perishable flesh is replaced by immortal spirit. The flesh doesn’t suddenly—in the twinkling of an eye—become spirit. Rather, the fleshly body of the person never leaves this earth. The inner self that is not physical (that has no mass) gets a new body, an imperishable body.
Therefore, because the glorified Christ gives life to the inner self of the person through His indwelling in the person as well as gives to the person a glorified body when judgments are revealed even for those who never come under judgment—“‘Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes Him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life’” (v. 24)—the glorified Christ is a life-giving spirit [pneuma], an Eve spirit. Thus, in His own personage, the glorified Christ is foreshadowed by both Adam and Eve, who together, form one flesh as the glorified Christ is one spirit, who is also one with the Father through the indwelling of the Father in Him (1 Cor 11:3), this indwelling of the Father coming when the spirit of God [pneuma Theou] descended in the bodily form of a dove and entered into [eis] the man Jesus (Mark 1:10).
All of the preceding was understood by the Apostle Paul, but not by the Circumcision Faction of 1st-Century Christendom—and certainly not by the mystery of lawlessness (see 2 Thess 2:7), with those who were of the mystery of lawlessness being proto-orthodox Christians that would, by use of Creed, Clergy, and Canon, gain control of the Jesus Movement and fast track it into pagan idolatry, using the chanted Creed in a manner similar to how 20th and 21st Century Sabbatarian Christians use bastardized Hebrew for the name of Christ, and using the Canon as an idol before which all Christian must pledge fidelity.
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."