The Philadelphia Church

And He said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men. (Matt 4:19)"

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 color.

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Weekly Readings

For the Sabbath of January 17, 2009


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.


The person conducting the services should read or assign to be read Exodus chapter 37, followed by Daniel chapter 3.

Commentary: Gold has been perceived as the color of the sun for millennia, with many pagan cultures using gold discs as representations of a sun god, thereby making gold central to the worship of sun cults. For these cultures, gold was the manifestation of their deity here on earth. Thus, the value attached to gold as a unit of monetary exchange comes from the metal’s value within the particular culture, with this value not being reflective of the metal’s utility for the making of tools. And within sun cults, gold had great value aside from its properties as a ductile metal; for gold became the nearly universal standard for purity, value, royalty, and combinations of these three properties.

With very few exceptions, the ancient cultures of this world worshiped the sun. Even today, “the world” worships the sun but in less obvious ways than in the past: if a culture ceases to work on a particular day, with only two primary exceptions, that day is the day of the sun, or Sunday, thereby making gold a representation for idolatry, especially in the golden calf incident (Ex chap 32) and in the case of the king of Babylon (Dan 2:38), who was the head of the humanoid image that Nebuchadnezzar saw in vision, with the entire humanoid image taking its identity from its head as disciples of Christ Jesus take their identity as the Body of Christ (or simply Christ) from their Head. But the most common way by which modern humankind worships the sun is not through direct reverence, but indirectly through so-called green initiatives that seek to roll back humanity’s affect upon the mother earth: Western culture’s focus on global warming, ozone depletion and species extinction is a blatant attempt to restore the earth mother’s fertility so that in her womb the sun can bring forth its strength. Sun worship that was cloaked in superstition now wears a garment cut from the cloth of scientific discovery.

The size of the image of gold that Nebuchadnezzar made (Dan 3:1), at 90 feet tall and 9 feet in width, most likely was sheathed in gold beaten very thin; for if the image had been solid gold it would have represented thousands of cubic feet of gold and probably more than possessed by the king. Most likely the image was the Chaldean equivalent of an Egyptian obelisk, a phallic symbol representing the sun placing its seed or strength into the earth to bring forth life, with the gold skin being not much more than condom thick … today, instead of bowing down to an apollonian phallic symbol representing the sun, Western culture focuses on the Dionysian bower of dark swamps, deformed frogs, and disappearing species as intellectuals, young and old, pay homage to the earth through the non-symmetrical mirror image of ancient Chaldean sun worship.

When beaten very thin, gold leaf becomes translucent, transmitting greenish blue light, because gold strongly reflects the yellow and red portion of the light spectrum … the color of an object comes from the light reflected from the surface of the object, not from the light that passes through the object if any light does. Color comes from a portion of light’s spectrum interacting in the eye with rods and cones, with “corrections” to what is actually seen made in the brain. So color is based on the physical properties of objects and light sources as the distribution of light energy versus wavelength is absorbed, reflected, or emitted. But said most simply, color is the portion of the spectrum reflected by an object. Thus, gold is “yellow” because the yellow portion of the spectrum (~ 590–560 nm; ~ 510–540 THz) is not absorbed, but is reflected back to the observer by the metal’s surface, with the color varying slightly depending upon the location of the deposit from which the gold has come. Even pure gold (99.999% pure) from differing deposits has a slight color difference, with Alaskan gold being a more pale yellow than South African gold that has a very slight reddish cast.

Gold, cesium, and copper are the only elemental metals with a natural color other than gray or white, with metals’ usual gray color dependent upon the “electron sea” [Dirac sea] that is capable of absorbing and re-emitting photons. Gold atoms react differently than do other metals, with this difference in orbiting electrons the subject for relativistic quantum chemistry. It is enough here to say that gold’s (and copper’s) color comes from the atom’s electron structure, with a single electron in the atom’s uppermost conduction band.

Because gold’s color comes from its electron structure, and because of its softness when pure, gold is usually alloyed with other metals: 14 carat gold-copper alloy is nearly identical in color to common bronze (90% copper, 10% tin) — and it is here where spiritual understanding must begin.

John the Revelator saw the coming of New Jerusalem, a city of “pure gold, clear as glass” (Rev 21:18); “the street of the city was pure gold, transparent as glass” (v. 21) … New Jerusalem is the Bride of Christ; when the city comes to earth, it will consist of glorified disciples.

If pure gold is as clear as glass, with pure gold forming a sea of glass, and if New Jerusalem is the Bride of Christ (Rev 21:2, 9–10), then glorified disciples will be as pure gold, clear as glass; will be like a sea of glass, meaning that “gold” that appears golden in color, even if chemically or physically pure, contains within itself impurities that are not physical but spiritual.

Gold is perhaps the easiest metal to smelt and purify, or to find in a nearly pure state. Its softness discloses purity: a touchstone is used to test gold and if a smear of gold doesn’t easily occur when a gold object is rubbed against the touchstone, the gold is not pure. But gold, now, represents in its physical purity what is lifeless! For the whole creation is created in darkness, consigned to death and disobedience. There is nothing good within the creation, including Jesus Himself, who said to the rich young ruler, “‘Why do you call me good? No one is good except [the] God [O Theos] alone’” (Luke 18:19).

·       There is nothing “good” that reflects a portion of the light spectrum.

·       What is good is “light” that is invisible or as clear as glass, providing illumination without itself being visible.

The new creature born of the spirit of God [pneuma Theon] is invisible; is physically as clear as glass; is under no condemnation, but set free from the law of sin and death (Rom 8:1–2). The new creature born of spirit [pneuma] is like the wind [pneuma] (John 3:5–8), moving air molecules that are invisible to the eye … what can be seen when wind blows are the objects the wind carries or moves. Likewise, the blue of blue sky doesn’t come from seeing air molecules, but from seeing suspended, microscopic dust particles absorbing the red portion of the spectrum and reflecting the blue portion. The pink of sunrises and orange of sunsets come from light passing through the atmosphere at a very shallow angle, thereby increasing the amount of atmosphere through which the light passes, with the additional distance diffusing the shorter blue portion of the spectrum while permitting the longer wavelength red portion of the spectrum to reach the observer.

One major denomination teaches that “purer” eyes are needed to see spirit or the breath of God, that spirit is like human breath but finer, more pure, of smaller particle size. But spirit or the breath of God is not like finely beaten human breath: there is a dimensional separation between the creation and the heavenly realm, not a sieve-like difference of particle size, for the energy of an electron comes not from its size but from its rotational potential; i.e., its spin. It isn’t particle size that produces the solidity of matter, but the spin of points of energy of zero radius: the world that every person knows has been spun into existence as a “story” is humanly spun into existence, with the story taking on a life of its own as an urban myth or as a folk myth, the inverse image of the physical creation.

Jesus told Nicodemus, “‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and spirit [pneumatos], he cannot enter the kingdom of [the] God [ton Theon]. That which is born of [the] flesh [ho sarx] is flesh [sarx], and that which is born of the spirit [ton pneumatos] is spirit [pneuma]. … The wind [pneuma] blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of [the] spirit [ton pneumatos]’” (John 3:5–6, 8).

The spirit of God [pneuma Theon] that descended upon Jesus as a dove would normally have been invisible; i.e., invisible like the mighty rushing wind that filled the room on the day of Pentecost following Calvary (Acts 2:2)[1]. But the spirit descending upon Jesus fulfilled all righteousness (Matt3:15) thereby permitting Jesus in baptism and receipt of the spirit of God to be the earthly type and shadow of disciples receiving a second birth, a second life from receipt of the Holy Spirit [pneuma hagion]. When the invisible becomes visible as in the spirit descending upon the man Jesus, the visibility itself discloses that the occasion is an earthly shadow … visibility of what is invisible only comes when the event is an earthly shadow and type of a spiritual event. Visibility comes when the invisible actually crosses dimensions to enter into this earthly realm; thus, a disciple’s invisible receipt of the Holy Spirit by the invisibility of this receipt discloses that this second breath of life doesn’t occur in this earthly realm, but in the heavenly realm (or better, in the inter-dimensional portion of the heavenly realm); so disciples truly have life received from the first Adam in this earthly realm, and life received from the second or last Adam in the heavenly realm which the glorified Jesus bears the sins of disciples but does not pay the death penalty for these sins. It is only in this earthly realm where Jesus’ death at Calvary paid the death penalty for the sins of Israel. He will not be crucified again; He will not die in the heavenly realm for the sins of Israel. Rather, He will either give those sins to Satan who will die for them and who is already destined to die, or He will return those sins to the unrepentant sinner when judgments are revealed. Either scenario, someone will die for every sin a disciple commits in the heavenly realm—and disciples can commit sin in the inter-dimensional portion of the heavenly realm, for unacted-upon lust is sin (Matt 5:27–28) but not in this earthly realm. It is sin in the realm where disciples have real life that has come through receipt of the breath of the Father.

Since living gold is as clear as glass, the yellow color of pure gold in this world discloses that the metal is of this spiritually lifeless creation; that gold in its physical purity is lifeless. Again, if gold had life, it would be clear as glass.

The above will take a little stretching of the mind: adultery is the reflection of inward lust as murder is the reflection of inward anger (Matt 5:21–22). The actions of the fleshly body of a human being are the visible reflections of inner thoughts. The person who desires to enter into God’s presence, God’s rest, will keep the Sabbath holy as the outward reflection of this inner desire. Likewise, the person who steals for whatever reason outwardly reflects the person’s desire to possess what doesn’t lawfully belong to the person; therefore, unless the person’s intellect countermands the thoughts of the mind as in the person who lusts after another not acting out on this lust because of, say, marital consequences, what the person thinks is what the person does. A person is what the person does, the philosophical position of Jean Paul Sartre. But the flesh is spiritually lifeless and will not enter the kingdom of God (1 Cor 15:50). A person “lives” in his or her thoughts—and thoughts are invisible unless the flesh acts upon the thought. Then it isn’t the thought that can be seen, but the action[s] of the flesh that reflects the thought, including countermanding thoughts to the lawlessness of the person consigned to disobedience.

The Logos spoke this world into existence; so it is the light reflected from the spun words of the Logos that can be seen by human eyes. These words are, of themselves, now lifeless. But because these spun words reflect light they disclose the things of God that are invisible to human eyes, what the Apostle Paul stated but did not explain (Rom 1:18–20). Thus, the things of this world that reflect light can be likened to the actions of the fleshly body of a human being that disclose the thoughts of the person’s mind.

The prophet Daniel told King Nebuchadnezzar that he was the head of gold of the image he saw in vision (2:28), but the now invisible Adversary is the spiritual king of Babylon (Isa 14:4) … as the gold of this world is visible, Nebuchadnezzar was also visible. But the spiritual king of Babylon is not visible, and will not be visible until he is cast into time (Rev 12:9–10). He will then become visible and under the irrevocable sentence of death throughout the last 1260 days of the seven endtime years of tribulation and throughout the 1000 years when he is chained in the bottomless pit (Rev 20:1–3). Therefore, Nebuchadnezzar’s visibility becomes the reflection of the Adversary’s invisibility. What Daniel tells Nebuchadnezzar about ruling the children of men wherever they dwelt (Dan 2:38) wasn’t really true of the earthly king, but is true of the Adversary: all of humankind has been consigned to disobedience (Rom 11:32) and death [i.e., delivered into the hand of the Adversary] because of the first Adam’s sin.

King Nebuchadnezzar was a man who died like other men die: his visible death and the visible death of his empire and its successive empires were unavoidable, for his visibility and his empire’s visibility disclosed that they were of this world. As the head of gold of the humanoid image he saw, he formed the shadow and type of the Adversary, the spiritual king of Babylon; the prophesied collapse of Babylon foreshadowed the certain demise of the Adversary’s kingdom that would be taken from the kings of the South and of the North and given to the Sons of Light, with Jesus being the First of these firstfruits. Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon would be no more forever, but it wasn’t his Babylon that was the subject of the oracle the prophet Jeremiah delivered against Babylon; for “‘In those days and in that time [when Babylon is destroyed by an army out of the north — Jer 50:3], declares the Lord, the people of Israel and the people of Judah shall come together, weeping as they come, and they shall seek the Lord their God. They shall ask the way to Zion, with faces turned toward it, saying, “Come, let us join ourselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant that will never be forgotten”’” (50:4–5). So no, the oracle is not delivered against Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon although his Babylon was the shadow and type of the Babylon of the Adversary and was the visible subject of the oracle. But the physical peoples of the house of Israel were scattered in the North Country, the representation of Death, from which they would be gathered following a second Passover liberation of Israel (Jer 16:14–15; 23:7–8; Isa 11:11–16 et al). The physical peoples of the house of Judah, except for a remnant, remained in Babylon even after Nebuchadnezzar’s death and the destruction of his empire. They were still there when the Babylonian Talmud [Talmud Bavli] was inscribed in the 5th-Century CE (it had previously been transmitted orally for centuries). Important “Jewish” populations dwelt in Nehardea, Nisibis, Mohazo, Pumbeditha, and Sura throughout the ten century period between exile and the death of Ravina in 499 CE, when the redaction of the Babylonian Talmud was completed (traditional teaching — some modern scholars argue that the main body of the Germara was actually written by the Saboraim and did not achieve its final form until about 700 CE).

Death, now, imparts color, for a portion of the spectrum of light—of life—is reflected from the surface of the corpse. The gold and the bronze vessels and fixtures of the tabernacle in the wilderness, and later, of the first temple were lifeless or without life. No reasonable person would argue otherwise. Yet Paul identifies disciples as the temple of God (1 Cor 3:16–17; 2 Cor 6:16), with the new creature or new self born of spirit being a vessel created for honored or dishonorable usage (Rom 9:20–24). Disciples become the living stones, with Christ Jesus being the cornerstone (1 Pet 2:4–5), of the temple of God. The new creature born of spirit dwelling within each disciple is, then, like a gold or bronze vessel of the first temple. However, disciples are also, collectively, New Jerusalem, made of gold as clear as glass.

The fleshly body of a person [Gr: soma] reflects light … Paul writes, “[F]lesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable” (1 Cor 15:50).

The flesh and blood body of a disciple is spiritually lifeless; it is like gold that reflects the yellow portion of the light spectrum. For it’s only those entities that are like light that have spiritual life—and Paul says of Satan, “And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness” (2 Cor 11:14–15).

If Satan comes today disguised as an angel of light, can he be seen? No, he cannot be seen today for he has spiritual life. He has life for as long as he remains in the inter-dimensional heavenly realm; for the presence of life and the absence of life cannot coexist in the timelessness of heaven. Only when he is cast into time (i.e., cast from heaven — Rev 12:7–10) will he become visible to human beings, for by being cast into time he is condemned to certain death. There is no way out of death for him, just as there is no way for the flesh and blood body of a person to escape death, with one exception only. Those empowered human beings who have lived without sin for three and a half years (for seven years in the case of the remnant — Rev 12:17) will see their flesh and blood bodies changed in the twinkling of an eye at Christ Jesus’ return. Satan will then reflect a portion of the light spectrum: what appears as a bright light reflects nearly the full spectrum.

A “bright light” is either generated by the source emitting the light as in a welding flash or in the sun, or a bright light comes from the near total reflection of light from another source. Light itself is invisible (a light bulb can be seen, but not the light coming from the light bulb); only when reflected from a mirror-like surface will the invisible light spectrum appear as a bright light or as a flash. Thus, a bright light is either self-generated or is a reflection of a self-generated light source. And Satan is not a self-generating light source. He can only reflect light—and by reflecting light when he comes claiming to be the messiah, he will deceive many. But by reflecting light he discloses that he will then be consigned to death.

If living gold is as clear as glass, then the gold overlaying the acacia wood ark of the covenant (Ex 25:11), the gold mercy seat (v. 17) and the gold cherubim (v. 18) were lifeless types and shadows of living arks of the covenant under an invisible mercy seat with spiritually living cherubim present … the new creature born of spirit forms the invisible ark of the covenant—no physical ark of the covenant was returned to Israel by ancient King Cyrus. The invisible mercy seat is grace. The invisible tablets upon which are written the commandments of God are the hearts and minds of disciples. The invisible staff is the promise of resurrection within each disciple, and the invisible jar of manna is the Spirit of Christ [pneuma Christos] dwelling within each person.

A person cannot see grace, cannot see the indwelling of Christ Jesus, a life-giving spirit (1 Cor 15:45); nor could an ancient Israelite see what was in the Ark of the Covenant. The ancient Israelite knew what was supposed to be in the Holy of holies, but he could not enter into this holy space. Only the high priest on one day of the year entered into the Holy of holies—and it was this high priest of Israel that perpetrated a fraud in Israel for all of the years of the second temple: the Ark of the Covenant was not returned by Cyrus. The high priest could not make atonement for Israel as Moses had commanded. Hence, the high priest deceived the people as “high” Christian theologians today deceive the peoples of spiritually circumcised Israel.

So a person can look at an object, and if the person can see the object or person with his or her eyes, the object or person is spiritually dead … this might be the surest way of identifying Satan when he comes claiming to be the Christ halfway through the seven endtime years of tribulation: he will be visible. When the glorified Jesus comes as the anointed one, He will come as light brighter than the sun; as light that cannot be observed even though it is not invisible. His brightness will be more than human eyes can see.


The person conducting the Sabbath service should close services with two hymns, or psalms, followed by a prayer asking God’s dismissal.

[1] On that day of Pentecost, the first disciples were in type baptized with spirit and with fire, the two baptisms with which, according to John the Baptist, Jesus would baptize the world. The sound of the mighty rushing wind foreshadowed the earth being baptized with spirit, and the cloven tongues of fire around the heads of the disciples foreshadowed glorification and the fire with which the earth will be baptized immediately prior to the coming of the new heavens and new earth.

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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."