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 scarcity of solid spiritual food.
Printable/viewable PDF format to display Greek or Hebrew characters
For the Sabbath of November 19, 2011
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.
Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven, wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow over his head, and his face was like the sun, and his legs like pillars of fire. He had a little scroll open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea, and his left foot on the land, and called out with a loud voice, like a lion roaring. When he called out, the seven thunders sounded. And when the seven thunders had sounded, I was about to write, but I heard a voice from heaven saying, "Seal up what the seven thunders have said, and do not write it down." And the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven and swore by him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and what is in it, the earth and what is in it, and the sea and what is in it, that there would be no more delay, but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets. Then the voice that I had heard from heaven spoke to me again, saying, "Go, take the scroll that is open in the hand of the angel who is standing on the sea and on the land." So I went to the angel and told him to give me the little scroll. And he said to me, "Take and eat it; it will make your stomach bitter, but in your mouth it will be sweet as honey." And I took the little scroll from the hand of the angel and ate it. It was sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it my stomach was made bitter. And I was told, "You must again prophesy about many peoples and nations and languages and kings." (Rev 10:1–11 emphasis added)
A lacunae is a gap in the text that permits the text to be opened up and examined from within—
Gaps can occur in the narrative flow of chronological events: there is such a gap in Paul’s epistle to the Galatians. After being called, Paul went into Arabia then returned to Damascus for an unspecified length of time. Three years after Paul went to Damascus, Paul went to Jerusalem; then fourteen years later, Paul again went to Jerusalem. And it was only after Paul returned from Jerusalem and was in Antioch that Paul opposed Peter.
What happened in the three years in Arabia? Paul doesn’t tell readers. Nor does Paul tell readers what happened in the fourteen years between when Paul first went to Jerusalem then when he goes again. In both instances, Paul chooses to omit information that doesn’t bear directly on the point Paul wants to make about circumcision of the flesh, but in choosing to omit information, Paul privileges other information such as his rebuke of Peter at Antioch.
The information that Paul privileges builds a case against the disciples at Jerusalem having understanding of spiritual birth—
Nearly two decades passed between when Paul was called and when Paul opposed Peter in Antioch, and most of these two decades are unaccounted-for in Scripture. What happened during these years must have been of importance to Paul, but what happened doesn’t form part of the shadow and copy of what endtime disciples do. Hence what happened wasn’t written down; however, those things that happened can be partially retrieved by what is written in Paul’s epistles.
When Paul confronted Peter, neither were spiritual lambs. Both had matured to some degree in the faith, but in maturing, there were apparently certain things that Peter did not yet understand; such as outward circumcision was of no importance and might well be a hindrance to understanding the things of God. But outward circumcision can only be an hindrance to understanding if emphasis is placed on the flesh, on the outer self of the person, on those things that have been concealed but can be seen with eyes … a man’s circumcision is publicly concealed, but is discoverable without God being involved in that discovery.
Although it could be argued that to discover a secret thing of God is to discover whether a man is outwardly circumcised and therefore a firstborn son of God according to Moses (Ex 4:22), the rebuttal is that a Greek could make this same discovery.
A mystery of God cannot be resolved or explained by a person not born of God as a son.
Jeremiah records, “‘Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will punish all those who are circumcised merely in the flesh—Egypt, Judah, Edom, the sons of Ammon, Moab, and all who dwell in the desert who cut the corners of their hair, for all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in heart’” (9:25:26). So circumcision of the flesh doesn’t make a person worthy of inheriting the kingdom, what both the lawyer (Luke 10:25) and the rich young ruler (Luke 18:18) understood—and what Paul understood:
For circumcision indeed is of value if you obey the law, but if you break the law, your circumcision becomes uncircumcision. So, if a man who is uncircumcised keeps the precepts of the law, will not his uncircumcision be regarded as circumcision? Then he who is physically uncircumcised but keeps the law will condemn you who have the written code and circumcision but break the law. For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God. (Rom 2:25–29 emphasis added)
If a Jew [an Israelite] is only a person circumcised of heart and is not also a person merely circumcised in the flesh, then Peter needed to be fed strong meat—food that would be sweet in his mouth but bitter in his belly—for this was not what Peter understood even though he saw a vision:
The next day, as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the housetop about the sixth hour to pray. And he became hungry and wanted something to eat, but while they were preparing it, he fell into a trance and saw the heavens opened and something like a great sheet descending, being let down by its four corners upon the earth. In it were all kinds of animals and reptiles and birds of the air. And there came a voice to him: "Rise, Peter; kill and eat." But Peter said, "By no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean." And the voice came to him again a second time, "What God has made clean, do not call common." This happened three times, and the thing was taken up at once to heaven. Now while Peter was inwardly perplexed as to what the vision that he had seen might mean, behold, the men who were sent by Cornelius, having made inquiry for Simon's house, stood at the gate and called out to ask whether Simon who was called Peter was lodging there. And while Peter was pondering the vision, the Spirit said to him, "Behold, three men are looking for you. Rise and go down and accompany them without hesitation, for I have sent them." (Acts 10:9–20 emphasis added)
If Peter had truly understood the vision he received and had by extension been able to feed the sheep spiritual meat, he would not, having returned to Jerusalem, explained his actions as he did:
So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcision party criticized him, saying, "You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them." But Peter began and explained it to them in order: "I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision, something like a great sheet descending, being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to me. Looking at it closely, I observed animals and beasts of prey and reptiles and birds of the air. And I heard a voice saying to me, 'Rise, Peter; kill and eat.' But I said, 'By no means, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.' But the voice answered a second time from heaven, 'What God has made clean, do not call common.' This happened three times, and all was drawn up again into heaven. And behold, at that very moment three men arrived at the house in which we were, sent to me from Caesarea. And the Spirit told me to go with them, making no distinction. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man's house. And he told us how he had seen the angel stand in his house and say, 'Send to Joppa and bring Simon who is called Peter; he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.' As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.' If then God gave the same gift to them as he gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God's way?" When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, "Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life." (Acts 11:2–18 emphasis added)
Again, if Peter had understood the vision he received, he would have better instructed the Circumcision Faction as to the workings of the spirit of God and how the spirit of God is the breath of God that resurrects the dead inner self of a human person, thereby making alive [quickening] the dead that are not physically dead but are as Cornelius was when he sent for Peter …
The dead of this world can be physically dead or physically living; can be outwardly uncircumcised as Cornelius was or outwardly circumcised as the Jews were who delivered Jesus to Pilate. The dead of this world can be righteous as Cornelius was, or murderers as the Jews were who delivered Jesus into the hands of the Romans. What they share in common is dead inner selves, received from the first Adam when he was driven from the Garden of God before Adam ate of the Tree of Life. And Peter by his justification of eating with uncircumcised men reveals that he remains absolutely clueless when it comes to spiritual birth: Peter knew after receiving the indwelling of the breath of Christ no more than Nicodemus understood when Nicodemus asked how a man was to enter his mother’s womb a second time (John 3:4).
So, did Peter declare anything more to Cornelius than first milk, colostrum … spiritual colostrum is enough for a newly born son of God; therefore, a person bringing to the dead a message about salvation need not have much understanding. But no Christian should ever mistake spiritual colostrum for spiritual meat—and far too many have.
Again, ingesting spiritual meat will taste sweet in the mouth—it is a delight to suddenly understand the mysteries of God—but this meat will be bitter in the belly as the reality that many are called but very few are chosen (see Matt 22:14) fully settles into the Christian.
Following Calvary, Peter was well able to fed spiritual lambs (Acts 2:14–36), but he was not ready to feed spiritual sheep. Rather, he, himself, first needed to be fed and to grow in grace and knowledge. However, even after having baptized Cornelius and his household, Peter still didn’t fully comprehend the movement of the law from hand to heart, and the movement of circumcision from penises to hearts. If Peter had, Peter would not have separated himself from Gentile converts when men of the Circumcision Faction came from Jerusalem. Rather, Peter would have instructed the men of the Circumcision Faction on the resurrection of the inner self from death.
In Scripture, food and knowledge are repeatedly linked in text … the little scroll was food for John—was knowledge for John.
In Peter not comprehending the movement of the law from hand to heart and from body to mind (see Matt 5:27–28), Peter shares the same failure to understand that would eventually result in the martyrdom of James the Just … certainly there were things that James didn’t understand—if James had comprehended the reality that the Church was the Body of Christ and by extension, the temple that Christ Jesus rebuilt after three days (John 2:21) [it wasn’t Jesus that resurrected Himself from death but the Father, so it wasn’t Jesus’ earthly body that Jesus referenced when He cleansed the temple in the first year of His ministry], then James, after Jesus was resurrected, would have never again set foot in Herod’s temple.
James also didn’t understand the resurrection of the inner self from death. And in his failure to understand, he subjects himself to martyrdom as did Peter and all of the other first disciples except for John.
Two journeys of faith are needed: the first journey takes a person into God’s presence at the base of Mount Sinai, and the second journey takes the Christian up the mountain and into God’s presence as Moses entered into God’s presence, portrayed in Scripture by Moses twice fasting for forty days and nights.
As James was martyred so was Paul martyred; for there were things that Paul didn’t understand, such as the essential revelation that disciples must undertake two journeys of faith comparable to the two journeys of faith of Abraham: the first journey takes the disciple into God’s presence, represented by the Promised Land and by Sabbath observance, and the second journey tests the disciple’s faith so that it can be made complete, this second journey being represented by Abraham’s journey to the land of Moriah (see Gen 22) when the Lord tested Abraham’s belief/faith that was counted to Abraham as righteousness (Gen 15:6). For the natural Jew who physically dwelt in the Promise Land and who kept the Sabbaths of God, the first journey of faith would have been professing that Jesus is Lord and believing that the Father—a deity not previously revealed to Israel, and the deity Israel mistook for Yah, the Logos—raised Jesus from death (Rom 10:9).
Each of the Apostles recognized as pillars of the early Church needed, himself, to be fed spiritual food; i.e., instructed in core principles for understanding the mysteries of God. Each needed to undertake a second journey of faith, a journey that would challenge what the Apostle understood about the Father and the Son … for natural Israel, God [Elohim] was one deity, not two deities as the linguistic icon comprising the Tetragrammaton YHWH reveals. And for nearly all of Christians, God is one, an unalterable dogma that was badly assaulted and abused in the 4th and 5th Centuries when lawless Christendom constructed a triune deity to maintain singularity in the face of linguistic evidence opposing such a concept.
In everything, what is physical is one whereas what is spiritual is two, with the two conjoined to function as one. Therefore, Jesus twice told Peter to feed disciples, the first feeding being milk when disciples were infants/lambs, and the second feeding occurring when disciples had obtained a faith comparable to the first disciples’ faith, with these two feedings of disciples functioning as one feeding in two epistles.
Christ Jesus is the shepherd of Christians (cf. Ezek 34:11–16; John 10:11) … Christians are either fat sheep or lean sheep, with Christian ministries being collections of fat sheep that muddy the water the lean sheep must drink, and soil the feed that the lean sheep must eat because these ministries have no real love for Christ Jesus. These ministries love the ways of this world: they burden parishioners, asking continually for tithes and offerings, moneys to which they are entitled but not moneys for which they have the right to ask. Hence, they are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ (2 Cor 11:13–15).
The fat sheep of the splintered COGs siphon away tithes and offerings to which they have no rightful claim; for these fat sheep do not understand the mysteries of God, and especially do not understand spiritual birth. They are as the Circumcision Faction were in the 1st-Century—and their fate will be the same, for there will be great wailing and gnashing of teeth when their judgments are revealed, judgments being made in this present era.
In examining Paul’s epistle to the Galatians, what’s apparent is that Jesus did not reveal to His first disciples much more than the previously unknown existence of the Father, the God that Israel did not know, the God that Arian Christians today do not know, the God that Trinitarian Christians do not know … without knowledge of the Father the rest of Holy Writ makes no sense. Without knowledge that the marriage relationship between Adam and Eve was analogous to the relationship imbedded in the Tetragrammaton YHWH between Yah, the creator of all that has been made, and the Most High God, the deity that Israel did not know, Israel could not understand the resurrection of the inner self from death to become the head of the body and certainly could not realize that Scripture was double-voice discourse, with the lives of outwardly circumcised Israel forming the story told by the inside narrator—that their lives were shadows and copies of the living inner selves of Christians (note, not copies of the outer selves <Fä:">, that are the fleshly bodies of Christians).
Circumcision of the heart cannot be directly seen, and is unrelated to any circumcision of the flesh that might or might not exist. Circumcision of the heart does not require the person to be male, or to be a natural descendant of the patriarch Abraham. A female human person can be circumcised of heart every bit as easily as a male human person can be; for the fleshly body is merely the house or tabernacle in which the living inner self, resurrected from death when the Father gave the person a second breath of life, His breath [B<,Ø:" 1,@Ø], temporarily dwells. This living inner self has not descended from the first Adam, but is a son of God, having received life from the Most High God in the form of the breath of God [B<,Ø:" 1,@Ø] in the breath of Christ [B<,Ø:" OD4FJ@Ø]. This son of God is not born through a man having his way with a woman, but through the indwelling of Christ in the former dead inner self of the person, with the indwelling of Christ in the form of His breath functioning both to penetrate the dead inner self as a male penetrates a female as well as a vessel analogous to the womb of a woman with the breath of the Father being in this vessel as the semen of a human father is in the womb of the woman.
Understand the above: the human person is born of his or her mother with a dead inner self—dead as in a dumb computer system—that must be penetrated and given life by Christ Jesus in the form of the breath of Christ [B<,Ø:" OD4FJ@Ø], which in turns functions as a vessel well able to hold the ever-burning fire of the breath of God that gave eternal life to the Son. Thus, the now-living inner self that is a son of God dwelling in a human tent of flesh is the head of the tent of flesh as a man is the head of his wife through the conjoined man and woman having but one head that can be circumcised (i.e., made naked by circumcision of the foreskin): the fleshly body of a human female has no head that can be circumcised, but once this female person is born of God, this female person has a living inner self that can be circumcised of heart. Thus, the breath of Christ penetrates the dead inner self of a female person as the husband of this female person is able to penetrate her fleshly body; hence Christ is the head of the disciple that is the living inner self (and by extension, the Head of the Church) as God is the Head of Christ through the breath of God [B<,Ø:" 1,@Ø] being in the breath of Christ. … Whatever dwells within a living entity is the head of that living entity after the manner of a man being the head of his wife. And this is what Nicodemus could not understand when Jesus said,
Jesus answered him [Nicodemus], "Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things?” (John 3:10–12 emphasis added)
Jesus’ use of the birth analogy was an earthly thing that Nicodemus simply couldn’t grasp at the time. The use of the marriage analogy is an earthly thing that can be equally difficult for a person not born of God to comprehend, but the marriage analogy is used throughout Scripture.
The woman that is penetrated by any man but her husband becomes one with the one who penetrates her, and he becomes her head. Therefore, a woman is used as an analogy for a nation, for a people, for an assembly [Church] — and if the entity that becomes her head through becoming one with her is the Adversary, the woman is cutoff from God and is an adulteress.
Paul writes, “Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?” (Rom 6:16) … a slave woman was not free to tell her master that he could not be her head. An alcoholic is a slave to alcohol and is not free to have any other head but alcohol: Christ Jesus cannot be the head of an alcoholic. Hence, no drunkard will inherit the kingdom of heaven regardless of how badly this person wants to be one with Christ Jesus; for this person already has a head, the thing that the person serves.
The human person who has not yet been born of God is the slave of the Adversary, consigned to disobedience (Rom 11:32) because of Adam’s transgression. The fleshly body of this human person is to the Adversary as a slave woman was to her master in the antebellum South. And the more attractive this person is to the Adversary—such as a person of ability, power, importance—the more likely this person is to be forcibly penetrated by the Adversary, with the person who is to the Adversary as Sally Hemings was to Thomas Jefferson being the man of perdition in the Affliction.
Disciples are not merely begotten of the God as the former Worldwide Church of God taught; for if disciples are not born of God, the living inner self of the disciple would be inside of the breath of Christ rather than the breath of Christ being inside of the son of God as the woman’s DNA is inside of a human person. If Christians were merely begotten, instead of being born through the indwelling of Christ in Christians, Christians would be indwelling aliens in Christ, something that cannot happen. However—and here is where this gets interesting—the Christian who has not yet been born of God through receiving a second breath of life, with the best example of such a Christian being one who worships on Sunday thereby making a practice of sinning—has a dead inner self that awaits spiritual birth as a fetus in a womb awaits human birth. This Christian that represents all of the Eighth-Day Church is begotten of God, and will be born in a day (Isa 66:7–8), the day of the Second Passover liberation of Israel … Herbert Armstrong’s theology placed his Sabbatarian disciples in the same category as the Eighth-Day Church is in when the mystery of God is understood. Armstrong claimed that his disciples were begotten of God but not yet born of God—begotten because these Christians have professed that Jesus is Lord and believe in their hearts that the Father raised Jesus from death.
In moving from physical—from a man penetrating his wife to bestow life to a lifeless [dead] ovum that will become a human child—to spiritual—to the indwelling of Christ—the earthly model/pattern conceals the spiritual so that a human person does not know what God has done from the beginning to the end (see Eccl 3:11). For Christians that errantly believe that human beings are born with immortal souls do not and cannot realize that the inner self of a person does not need regenerated to keep it from going to hell [the lake of fire], but needs to be resurrected from death through the person receiving a second breath of life, the breath of God, the same breath of God [B<,Ø:" 1,@Ø] that appeared as a dove and visibly lit and remained on the man Jesus the Nazarene (Matt 3:16) … as Elohim [singular in usage] doesn’t breathe life into every human being born of woman but one time breathed life into the first man, the man of mud, thereby creating a self-replicating breathing species, God the Father doesn’t breathe His breath into every person born as a son of God but one time gave life via His breath to the man Jesus of Nazareth, who now calls those whom the Father gives Him and dwells in those who will walk as He walked.
A fetus that has breathed its mother’s breath while in the womb will, when born, breathe on its own. A son or daughter of human parents has been born. But the spiritual birth process has one more step/component. The spiritual birth process requires that a disciple is twice born of spirit in addition to being humanly born.
Adam was created from the elements of this earth by Elohim [singular in usage] who was Yah, the Logos [Ò 7`(@H], who created all that has been made (see John 1:3). Similarly, the Firstborn Son of the Most High God—the glorified Jesus—was created from Israel, spiritually equivalent to the elements of the earth from which Adam was taken.
As not all of the earth was used by Elohim [singular in usage] when He created the first Adam, not all of humankind was used when the Father created the last Adam: as only red mud/clay from a location outside the Garden of Eden was used in forming the first Adam, only the nation of Israel was used in forming the second Adam—
· Israel as the chosen firstborn natural son of God (Ex 4:22) was to the Most High God as clay/mud was to Elohim on the dark portion of Day One of the Genesis “P” creation account.
· Christ Jesus, a life-giving spirit and the second Adam, was created from Israel on the light portion of Day One as the first Adam was created on the dark portion of Day One — light came to men in the form of Jesus the Nazarene, the only Son of the Logos (2 Cor 4:6).
If natural Israel was to the Most High God as clay/mud was to Elohim—and this analogy holds true—then professing Christians with the indwelling of Christ are to the Most High God as humankind was to Elohim. And as Elohim [again singular] regretted that He had made men (Gen 6:5–6) and brought a flood of water onto the earth to blot out all nephesh except for Noah and the nephesh that were on the Ark with Noah, the Most High God will bring a flood of life onto the world, baptizing the world in His breath and into life as Elohim baptized the world in water and into death. And as Elohim selected one righteous man to bring his sons, each a son of righteousness, from one world [age] into the following world [age], the Most High God will select two men to bring the Father’s sons, each righteous through having been filled with the Father’s divine breath, from this present world into the age to come …
Two instead of one; for as “one” is first, “two” is second. As one preacher of righteous could deliver the sons of righteous of the first Adam into the following world, two preachers of righteousness will be needed to deliver the sons of righteousness of the second Adam into the world to come. As one Moses was able to lead the people of Israel out from Egypt, the representation of sin, another prophet like Moses and then a second prophet like Moses are necessary to lead the circumcised-of-heart nation of Israel out from Sin, with both of these prophets being Christ, the first being Christ in the 1st-Century and the second being Christ in the 21st-Century.
Receiving a second breath of life causes what was one to become two; hence, two Passover liberations of Israel are needed. Two resurrections of the body/Body of Christ are necessary, meaning that two deaths of the body/Body of Christ will have occurred. Individually, the person who has received a second breath of life is subject to two deaths, one of the fleshly body and one of the living inner self in the lake of fire.
The prophet Jeremiah records the words of the Lord:
Therefore, behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when it shall no longer be said, “As the LORD lives who brought up the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt,” but “As the LORD lives who brought up the people of Israel out of the north country and out of all the countries where he had driven them.” For I will bring them back to their own land that I gave to their fathers. / Behold, I am sending for many fishers, declares the LORD, and they shall catch them. And afterward I will send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain and every hill, and out of the clefts of the rocks. For my eyes are on all their ways. They are not hidden from me, nor is their iniquity concealed from my eyes. But first I will doubly repay their iniquity and their sin, because they have polluted my land with the carcasses of their detestable idols, and have filled my inheritance with their abominations. (Jer 16:14–18 emphasis added)
Death is the penalty for iniquity and sin. To doubly repay this penalty, the Israelite must die twice. So it will here be asserted that the two witnesses, as types of Moses and Aaron to Christendom, are equivalent to Noah who, as a preacher of righteousness, brought his sons that were by extension sons of righteousness from one age into the following age—and from the sons/descendants of Noah, one man, Abraham, was chosen because of his belief of God, his faith, to be counted as righteous. From the third part of humankind that the two witnesses bring to a spiritual plains of Moab, one people who, because of their faith, will be chosen to be counted as righteous. And this one people will wait, as Abraham waited, for the coming city of God, with this waiting being the Endurance of Jesus, the last 1260 days before the Second Advent.
But a second people, also because of their faith, will also be chosen and counted as righteous after the Thousand Years of the Millennium … from the two witnesses will come two peoples in two resurrections that will be counted as righteous because they believed God, with the first people being those born of God before encountering physical death and with the second people being those not born of God before dying physically.
Prior to when the kingdom of this world is given to the Son of Man, spiritual birth doesn’t come to those who are far from God; to those who are as Gentiles were to Israel before the spirit was given. Spiritual birth only comes to those individuals who were foreknown by the Father, meaning that inviting Jesus into a Christian’s heart, that professing Jesus is Lord and believing the Father raised Jesus from the dead only places the person in a sanctified relationship with God, a relationship like the relationship ancient Israel had with Elohim [singular in usage]; like the relationship the child of a believing parent has with God; like the relationship the unconverted spouse of a believing spouse has with God. In each case, the sanctified person by demonstrated obedience to God will be saved. But this doesn’t mean that the sanctified person is born of God. Rather, the sanctified person will be saved according to Paul’s gospel because he or she demonstrated through obedience to God that the law of God was written on the person’s heart.
Sanctification means that the prayers of the sanctified person are heard by God, who may or may not draw the person out of this world by giving to the person the earnest of the spirit, indwelling eternal life in the form of His breath [B<,Ø:" 1,@Ø] in the breath of Christ [B<,Ø:" OD4FJ@Ø].
Again, the sanctified Christian can be likened to a natural Israelite, who was not born of spirit as a son of God prior to Calvary.
A Christian, humanly born into a Christian home, who professes that Jesus is Lord doesn’t necessarily do so because the Father has drawn this person from the world, especially so when this person adheres to the dogmas of the person’s human parents … can this be shown, the question that should immediately come to mind? And it can be: John wrote,
Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he [Jesus] 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 3:3–11 emphasis added)
Outwardly manifested sin is the transgression of the Law; is lawlessness. Inwardly manifested sin is unbelief (see Rom 14:23), with faith and belief being the same in Greek. Therefore, the Christian who does not keep the Law and/or who does not love his or her brother is of the Adversary. A Christian must, by faith and out of love for God, keep the commandments. This Christian must also love his or her brother as the Christian loves Christ, because Christ also dwells in the Christian’s brother. And either failure to keep the commandments (i.e., to make a practice of sinning) or failure to love the Christian’s brother discloses that the Christian is not born of God … the Sabbath is the seventh day, not the following day, and the Eighth-Day Christian is the unborn brother of the Christian who has already been born of spirit. So failure to strive to keep the commandments discloses that the Christian has not been born again. Likewise, failure of the Sabbatarian to have love for Eighth-Day Christendom discloses that the Sabbatarian has not been born of God.
Failure to have love for a Christian worshiping on Sunday—for a Christian who will betray the Sabbatarian in the Affliction—is just an easily read sign that the Sabbatarian has not been born of God as is the lawlessness of the Eighth-Day Christian.
The number of Sabbatarians who have genuine love for unborn sons of God is few, very few, so few that they can be numbered. And unless the Father draws additional individuals from this world—He will although He hasn’t been because there has been a famine of the word of God (i.e., no food available for infant sons of God)—the number of truly born-of-spirit sons of God will remain as rare as gold on a white sand beach. But additional laborers are needed for the harvest of God. Therefore, we can expect to see additional Christians coming to Philadelphia where they can be fed meat as opposed to soured milk.
Yes, there has been a famine of the word of God: spiritual colostrum, even spiritual milk will not long sustain a son of God, especially when neither is fed to new born disciples.
When a human father impregnates a woman, a child will be born, but when a male butterfly fertilizes the eggs of the female of his species, a butterfly will not be born. Rather, a caterpillar is born, with all growth occurring in this stage of development. When the Father gives a second breath of life to a human being, the person is not “born” as a deified being. Rather, the inner self is resurrected from death to grow within the tent of flesh in which it dwells. This feeding and growing inner self is analogous to the caterpillar stage of a butterfly, with the death of the flesh and burial in the earth being likened to the chrysalis stage of a butterfly. What will then emerge from the earth will bear as little structural resemblance to the fleshly body of the person as the adult butterfly bears to the worm that didn’t die.
It is the glorified disciple that will marry the Bridegroom at the Wedding Supper in a manner analogous to the courtship and mating of adult butterflies … what happens after the Wedding Supper to those disciples who rule the day is not revealed in Scripture.
Truly born again Christians can be likened to caterpillars whereas those Christians that have not yet been born again can be likened to the unfertilized eggs of butterflies—and the remainder of humanity can be likened to the vegetative world in which butterflies live.
In going from physical to spiritual and from one to two, the Christian who was once born physically needs to be twice born of spirit, receiving life from the Father when the inner self is resurrected from death, and then receiving life from the Son when judgments are revealed and the outer self puts on immortality if that is the judgment revealed (see John 5:21). In the lifecycle of a butterfly, a person sees as shadow and type of the Christian being twice born of spirit, with the later birth producing a son of God that will be like Jesus; for this son of God will be able to see Jesus as He is (1 John 3:3).
Before the Father will give life to His sons by resurrecting the inner selves of Christians from death, there must be food available for these infant sons of God to eat … Paul said that his epistle to the Corinthians was milk and so it is. But does a human person grow to maturity only drinking milk? A son of God will not mature on a milk diet, but needs solid food to grow strong enough to resist the Adversary and prevail against the Adversary. And there has been a genuine scarcity of solid spiritual food upon which infant sons of God can feast, eating their fill, able to come back for more.
The person conducting the Sabbath service should close services with two hymns, or psalms, followed by a prayer asking God’s dismissal.
* * * * *
"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission.
[ Home ] [ Sabbath Readings ]