Note: J. Preston Eby, in order to continue to devote his full energy to writing, no longer works in the office and does not receive email. He does, however, respond to any urgent correspondence via snailmail.
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KINGDOM BIBLE STUDIES
the things concerning the
The Kingdom of God
Table of Contents
14. How the Kingdom Comes
15. How the Kingdom Comes (cont.)
16. How the Kingdom Comes (cont.)
17. How the Kingdom Comes (cont.)
18. How the Kingdom Comes (cont.)
19. How the Kingdom Comes (cont.)
20. Entering the Kingdom
21. Possessing the Kingdom
22. Inheriting the Kingdom
23. Inheriting the Kingdom (cont.)
24. Except you Become as a Little Child
25. Except you Become as a Little Child (cont.
26. Repent for the
27. Repent for the
HOW THE KINGDOM COMES
The history of every son of God will eventually be the story of a progression from the natural through the spiritual to the celestial; passing from the realm of darkness and death through the realm of quickening, change and transformation, to the fullness of stature and glory in the image and likeness of God; from the world of sinners through the realm of the Church to the power and glory of the Kingdom of God; from the brazen altar of sacrifice for sin in the outer court to the golden altar and table of prayer, praise and communion in the dim light of the candlestick in the holy place into the Holiest of all, where shines undimmed the more excellent glory of the undiminished majesty of God.
brings us to an important question Is the Church this
I ask the question Is the Church this Kingdom, or, is the Church part of this
Kingdom? Many proclaim that this present age
is the Church age and that the coming age is the Kingdom age, thus
separating the Church from the Kingdom on the basis of time.
The difference, however, is not one of time but of relationship and
administration. For you see, the Church is a
present reality and the Kingdom is likewise a present reality. If you say that the Church is not the Kingdom, I
think you are accurate; but if you say that the Church is not part of the Kingdom, then
you are wrong. May I illustrate.
the Church is the very heart of Gods program as He moves us toward His glorious
Kingdom. Are you moving with Him? It is my conviction that Gods great men of
the past moved with Him. When John Knox said,
The Kingdom, however, is never to be identified as the Church. Nowhere in the New Testament is such an identification made. The Kingdom is always prior to the Church. God is King. As King He has a Kingdom. John the Baptist first announced the Kingdom among men. The Kingdom came into manifestation through Jesus Christ and He afterward created the Church. His disciples were first heralds of the Kingdom before there was a Church. They were sent to proclaim what they had seen and heard from Jesus of the rule of God. When Jesus sent the 12 and the 70 on their missions, He sent them as ambassadors of the Kingdom. They were an extension of His own ministry, and thus He gave them the power of the Kingdom. Everywhere they proclaimed the arrival of the Kingdom and demonstrated the authority and rule of God with mighty signs, wonders, and miracles. Kingdom and Church are related terms, but they are not synonymous terms. The term kingdom is found about 160 times in the New Testament. The term church is found about 115 times in the New Testament. The Kingdom is the dynamic rule or reign of God and the sphere in which His rule is expressed. The Church is a body of people the congregation of believers. The Greek word for church is ECCLESIA meaning the called out or an assembly.
Matthew 6:33 Jesus said, But seek ye first the
government is thus a higher dimension than a mere congregation of people. In
like manner, the Kingdom is the rule of God; the Church is a congregation of believers. The saints may see the Kingdom, enter
the Kingdom, receive the Kingdom, or inherit the Kingdom, but
being members of the Church does not make them the Kingdom.
You do not receive or inherit the Church! The many sayings about seeing and entering into the
Kingdom are not equivalent to entering the Church. You
may enter a Church by walking into the midst of the believers, but one does not enter the
Kingdom in that way. Every citizen of the
Church of the living God must remember that it is not the whole thing; that the Kingdom of
God is greater than the Church; that men must press into the Kingdom of God, through much
tribulation we must enter the Kingdom, and through qualifying we may be accounted worthy
of the Kingdom, but there is no need to press, suffer tribulation, or pay a high price to
enter the Church. The Church is, after all,
only an ecclesia, a people gathered out of sin and the world unto God through faith in
Jesus as Saviour. Just as the true Church
births the manchild, so is our experience in the Church a prerequisite for entrance into
the Kingdom. Is not this the very reason why
the Holy Spirit testified to each of the seven Churches in the book of Revelation, To
him (in the Church) that overcometh will I give power over the nations...to him that
overcometh shall I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I am set down with my Father
in His throne. It is the processing of
the Lord in the Church realm that qualifies one for a place in the Kingdom and the Kingdom
is greater than the Church. The Kingdom can be
the outcome only of a Church which has followed on to know the Lord, purged and purified,
changed and transformed, growing up unto a Perfect Man, unto the measure of the stature of
the fullness of the Christ. The Churches on
earth comprise forgiven sinners. The
and powerful as the Church is, Jesus made very little of it, compared to the Kingdom. He said, I will build my Church (Mat.
16:18) and He mentioned it two times more in the eighteenth chapter of Matthew; that is
all Jesus ever said about the Church during His earthly ministry. He gave no church teachings; He
answered no church questions; He told no church parables; He made
no church promises; all He said and taught and demonstrated had to do with the
reality of the Kingdom. In all the Gospel
according to John the word Church is not once used. In
all the Gospel according to Luke the word Church is not once used. In all the Gospel according to Mark the word Church
is not once used. During the forty days
between His resurrection and ascension the Lord never once spoke to His disciples of the
Church, but on nearly every occasion when He appeared to them He opened the scriptures to
them and spoke to them of the
It is the Kingdom, and not the Church, that breaks in pieces and consumes all the kingdoms of the world and of the increase of which there shall be no end. The fervent prayers upon the lips of holy and seeking men has ever been, not, Thy church come, but Thy kingdom come. Let your heart consider what I now say. Every man, woman and child who throughout this blessed dispensation of grace has trusted Jesus Christ as Saviour and been washed in His precious blood has been numbered in Gods great Book as members in His Church. We are now, one and all, in the Church of Jesus Christ. We do not need to pray to enter, seek to enter, press on to enter, overcome to enter, or meet any further qualification to enter. We are the Church, and only by faith in Jesus Christ and His salvation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved (Acts 2:41,47).
But those faithful and persevering ones who follow on to purge themselves of the corruption of the flesh; who fully partake of the divine nature, putting on the mind of Christ; who give all diligence to add to their faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge, and to knowledge temperance, and to temperance patience, and to patience God-likeness, and to God-likeness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness the love that is agape; to those who do these things the blessed promise is held forth of an abundant entrance into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (II Pet. 1:4-11).
The sun is setting rapidly upon this tired old age in which we have lived so long. The Church during this age has dwelt in the realm of limitation, of mixture, equipped only with the firstfruits of the Spirit. As Paul by the wisdom granted unto him truly stated, For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away (I Cor. 13:9-10). The Church of the dispensation men call the dispensation of grace pertains to the in part realm. The Kingdom, on the other hand, is the realm of fullness, an abiding, triumphant dimension of life. Revivals are a characteristic of the Church realm. Fullness and permanence are characteristics of the Kingdom realm. Gods purpose in His sons is to move us from revival to unmovable stability from the Church to the Kingdom.
In praying for and seeking revival we develop a revivalistic mentality which contradicts the purposes of God for this Day. When one examines revivals historically, he finds that when you live in the revival mentality you are like a person who gets high on a drug you soon need another fix. Revivals throughout history are recurrent activity activity that returns from time to time. Revivals are those kinds of divine intervention which bring about awakening, followed by spiritual declension and apostasy. It is a vicious, never-ending cycle. Awake, asleep. Awake, asleep. Alive, dead. Alive, dead. Delivered, bound. Delivered, bound. Refreshed, sluggish. Refreshed, sluggish. Filled, empty. Filled, empty. Revivals are oscillating in nature, swinging back and forth between two extremes. Furthermore, revivals are occasional and variable. They occur now and then. In and out, up and down, here and there, now and then, back and forth, awake and asleep do you feel yourself getting motion sickness?
the 1800s there was a revival called The Great Awakening. As someone has pointed out, unfortunately it was
followed by The Great Asleepening. We
dont need another Great Awakening so that we can have another Great Asleepening so
that we can have another Great Awakening. What
the world needs in this hour is not another revival. No
revival has brought the ultimate triumph of Gods Kingdom in the earth. No revival has brought the universal defeat of sin,
sorrow, sickness, limitation and death. No
revival has brought an end to war, strife, hatred, corruption, fear, tyranny, pain,
hunger, or any of the other problems and
curses that blight mankind. And no revival has
ever brought perfection and the fullness of God to the Church! Ah, our prayer should be, Lord, dont
send another revival! Our prayer should
be as our Lord taught us to pray, Thy kingdom come! I am not a revivalist. I am a Kingdomite!
I am a son of the Kingdom, an announcer of the Kingdom, a proclaimer of the
Kingdom, an ambassador of the
God is abiding and progressing from glory to glory, from realm to realm, from age to age
not sleeping and awaking. The Kingdom
sons are builders who build a place for God to inhabit permanently not a resort for
Him to visit occasionally. I want to be a
builder! Jesus said, We will come and
make our abode with him. What God
desires in this hour is a place to stay, a temple to dwell in, a throne to sit upon, a
nature to be formed in, a Kingdom to rule from forevermore.
The focus in the New Testament is upon Christ and His Kingdom not
revivals. You dont read about revivals
in any of the writings of the apostles. The
word revival does not appear in any dictionary of Kingdom terminology. So far as the New Testament economy is concerned,
revival is an unscriptural and extra-biblical concept.
You wont find the idea anywhere! Jesus
didnt promise revivals. The apostles
never taught or exhorted or gave any instructions about revivals. Amazing, isnt it, how much of the language of
GOVERNMENT means to rule (govern) thoughts or the mind. The suffix ment and the word mental are both derived from the Latin root ment. Both human and divine government are forms of mind-control; human government is by various forms of control by the carnal mind, whereas the rule of God is by the direct control of the mind of Christ. The carnal mind molds and shapes the carnal man through fleshly passions, impulses, propensities and expediencies. The carnal mind also influences and controls the carnal man through outward agencies such as television, teachers, books, magazines, movies, advertising, laws, fashions, parents, peer pressures, etc. The mind of Christ molds and shapes the life of the sons of God by the inward law of life, by the living word of God, by the promptings and dealings of the Holy Spirit, as well as through the outward agencies of godly examples, instruction, counsel, manifestations of the Spirit, preaching, teaching, and the overwhelming presence and power of God.
have written all these things that our hearts might be prepared for the truths that
concern the establishment of the
many hold the absurd idea that the
NOT BY FORCE
How far can force go in this world? Is force the final word, the end of all argument, the arbiter of every dispute? Men have tried to answer this on a thousand battlefields. The answer is that force can go a long way. It is a mighty power. Jesus was crucified by force. Roman soldiers must have cynically laughed as they pressed His hands to the cross and drove the nails through His flesh. He was helpless before this overpowering might. Yet Christ had power to destroy those mens lives if He had the will. When He stood there with the cross in full view, He said to His persecutors that it was in His power to call twelve legions of angels. If that heavenly host which hovered about that Son could have once made itself manifest, O how they would have swept that doomed city, that accursed conclave of false priests, and those wretched, blind and filthy-minded heathen soldiers! How the breath of these heavenly angels could have swept the life out of them and swept them down into hell and the grave. But that is not Gods way. That is not the mission of the Son or the sons. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the sons of God.
has been the hallmark of mankinds turbulent and violent history. Man has no answer to the dilemma. But God has the answer! It was brutal force that nailed the firstborn Son
of God to the tree but the third day He arose triumphant from the grave! The account says that the soldiers who guarded the
tomb were like dead men they were like dead men before the might, the
sheer might of this rising Life. Those
soldiers and the irresistible force of
light is the light of life. It is the same
glory that lighted the world in the beginning when the almighty Father said, Let
there be light, and there was light, and in Him was life, and His life was the light
of men. Nothing can stand before the power of
this light of life (which is love) and all things that are touched by its life-giving rays
are completely transformed thereby. Resurrection
life is the mightiest power in the universe. But
it is not force it is the quickening, transforming, creative power of life. That is the power of the
When our Lord Jesus was ready to begin His great sonship ministry on earth, He was driven by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil (Mk. 1:12; Mat. 4:1). What a strange statement! The Holy Spirit drives the Son of God into the wilderness to be tempted by satan, the arch enemy of all righteousness, a murderer from the beginning, the father of lies! Ah, but it was necessary for the Son to be PROVEN, made STRONG, to OVERCOME in these realms before proceeding on into His glorious ministry and the agony and death of the cross. Remember Jesus was not only the Son of God, He was the Son of man. And being both He was capable not only of hearing from God, but hearing those things that be of man. So when we speak of that ancient serpent which is the devil and satan, we are not talking about a beautiful and glorious fallen angel, but that mind which savors the things of man the carnal mind. The carnal mind is the ground where the serpent crawls. The flesh nature is the dust that he feeds upon (Gen. 3:14). The apostle James put it this way, Everyone is tempted when he is beguiled and allured by his own desire; the desires conceives and breeds sin, while sin matures and gives birth to death (James 1:14-15, Moffat).
The battle lay not with some mythical personage outside of the Christ. The conflict was within. The voice was an inner voice. The suggestion was in His mind, its power in His emotions and will. God speaks to us in our mind and spirit. Satan also speaks in our mind and emotions. There is no monster without. There are three things in this vast world which are not of the Father, and only three the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life; briefly, appetite, avarice, and ambition. These are the power of satan. I do not think you will be able to avoid the conclusion that all the inventions, creations and contrivances of man are in existence to cater to these three things. It was with these three things that Eve was tempted in the garden. She saw the tree was good for food (the lust of the eyes), a tree to be desired (the lust of the flesh), a tree to make one wise (the pride of life), and the temptation was not from without but from within. How remarkably the three temptations of Jesus in the wilderness parallel these three! Every temptation of the devil comes to us through the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life. There are no others. Not for Adam and Eve, not for Jesus, and not for us.
us consider for a moment the third temptation of Jesus.
There is great wisdom, understanding and power in the truth I now set before
you. By it we comprehend the ways of the
Jesus is here confronted with the question: Shall I win the world through self-effort, by worldly methods, by military might, by force of power, and conquer it in order to bring it salvation? Does the end justify the means? Alexander, Caesar, Napoleon all faced a similar question. For they too did not merely have an eye to conquest. In the back of their minds, though naturally on a much lower plane than the divine and exalted level of Jesus, was the desire for welfare and peace. They would ruthlessly overrun the people for their good! They would force them to be blessed, improved, prospered and happy! Any means were justified by the end. But the vision of Jesus is as clear as sunlight. He realized that the plan was no inspiration from His Father in heaven, and was therefore earthly, sensual, and devilish. To adopt it would be to fall down and worship the god of this world.
is impossible to possess the world, or to conquer it by carnal means, even for God,
without loss of purity, without using guile and hateful force, without trampling mens
lives, killing, destroying, plundering, and locking up masses of men in prisons, which is
equivalent to worshipping the very devil whom we intend to drive out. Matters not whether Hitler does it or whether Jesus
Christ does the same thing riding out of the heavens on a white horse and with His armies
from heaven ruthlessly and brutally smiting the kingdoms of the world! It is the same.
There is not one iota of difference. And
yet I tell you that this is exactly how millions of Christians conceive of the arrival of
Accordingly the clear and lofty answer wells out from the holy soul of every son of God as it sprang up from the soul of that firstborn among many brethren: It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve! In other words, Gods business can only be done in Gods way and by Gods power! Here we can marvel at the loftiness of the Pattern Son. In an instant He passes through the sum total of the experiences that we encounter in innumerable succession in our journey into the fullness of God and to the throne of universal dominion: Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve! That is the first law of sonship. May God make this wonderfully real to the heart of every elect son of God.
Jesus saw through the intoxicating visions and glittering prospects which the devil
conjured up before Him. He renounced worldly
power even the power that He might have used in a spiritual way for His
purpose, the establishing of the
As we consider the call of God in sonship for this significant hour, let us look unto Jesus who is our Pattern and Forerunner. When He was tempted to merge the power of the Spirit with the methods of the world in order to bring the Kingdom of God to pass in the earth, He rose up from the place where the kingdoms of the world shimmered before Him, where crowns flashed and banners rustled, and hosts of enthusiastic people were ready to acclaim Him, and quietly walked the way of poverty and suffering to the cross. He walked the road where the great and the rich of this world will despise Him, but where He is the brother of sinners, the companion of the forsaken and lonely, the sharer of the lot of all who know not where to lay their head, the comrade of the insulted and injured, to whom He reaches out with the power of divine love. He chose to walk the way of the cross and of obedience to the ways of His Father, He who could have possessed the whole world in one bold stroke. And that is why the story closes with the angels ministering unto Him.
Did He stake His life on the wrong card, this Jesus of Nazareth? Did He make a bad exchange when in the hour of temptation He preferred the ministration of angels and the presence of the Father to the riches and honor of this world? If He had accepted the kingdoms of this world and their glory He would be forgotten today. He would have become a great king in history, buried in the history books of our schools. He would have become a venerated museum piece if He had signed the pact with the devil. But because He learned obedience to the voice of the Father He has become our Elder Brother and our King, and therefore we too know that this sonship is our destiny; with the crown and the throne and priesthood after the order of Melchizedek
there is one lesson every son of God needs to learn it is this: One must not, yea, cannot,
utilize the strength or wisdom of the flesh or the ways of the world to promote and build
In a certain Christian college there is a speech club called Ambassador Club. During each meeting of this club there is a question and answer forum during which the Topic Master can ask various questions of the members relating to current events, weather, human interest and other topics of his choosing, including subjects relating to the Bible. One day the question was: In the Kingdom of God what will you do first after you receive your resurrection body and have all power? The answers were many and varied, some good and some questionable. The first thing I will do, clamored one freshman vigorously, is to wipe out all the churches, destroy all of their buildings, pile all of the steeples into one big pile and burn them in sight of all the pagan people that are still alive. That will show them who is boss. Obviously this student didnt know much about what he was saying, because if he wiped out all of the churches he would be killing a great many people, for, after all, churches are people and not buildings.
Still another student had his mind made up as to how things should be run, and replied: I will go into the ghettos and force all those lazy poor people on welfare and food stamps to go to work and earn their food, or else they can starve. Compassionate Son of God! Merciful Saviour! What an example of false priesthood! At least Jesus created bread and fish and wine for the poor and famished to eat! Another outstanding example of things to come in the millennium was voiced by a junior, who stated: Since we will be ruling with a rod of iron, I will force all people to keep the Sabbath, and then all the rest of Gods laws, and if they dont do as I say I will punish them and force them to obey me. Here, of course, was an answer born of a smattering of knowledge and an overdose of ego. Obviously not all the comments were as harsh as these, and a number were quite good and well thought out, but these comments do illustrate the attitude that many Christians have regarding the way they would rule and reign in the Kingdom of God. Just what is the attitude we should have of ruling the nations and all things? And what is the first thing you would do, precious friend of mine, should you wake up one fine morning a manifested son of God, a King-Priest in the Kingdom of the Father with all power and authority in heaven and in earth!
peace and blessing will not come to this war-torn world by military might and power. True and lasting peace and blessing will come only
by the overwhelming, transforming power of Gods love through His sons of love in the
Kingdom of love. The
question is just this: How is this Kingdom to be administered? Let me say again how it cannot be administered. It cannot be administered by force. Men have tried that method. They have used fire and sword to make Gods
Kingdom come. Peter had that spirit when he
pointed to the two swords the disciples possessed. Mohammed
followed this plan when he gave men the alternative either of Islam or death. In the early part of the fourth century, the
monarch of the
the whispering that went around
Crusaders, spurred on by the eloquence of Peter the Hermit, committed the same blunder. The old Saxon and Gothic kings, who when they
accepted Christianity themselves compelled their people to be baptized as well, followed
the same mistaken method. But these people did
not advance the
may increase the numbers of a sect, it cannot add one to the membership of the Kingdom. The sword may compel a man to change his name; it
can never compel him to change his heart. Oh,
no; it is not by the sword that Gods Kingdom will come, not by a literal sword out
of the mouth of the Christ nor in the hands of the saints.
To all ecclesiastical persecutors Christ says, Put the sword up into
his sheath. Not by the sword is the
Kingdom to come, but by the cross. This is the
weapon we have to use in our warfare. Not the
cross and the sword, as
Captain of our salvation is not General Joshua crossing the Jordan, but Jesus the Lamb of
God upon the throne. Therefore He made His
triumphal entry into
are different kinds of government but of one thing we may be very certain the
God is love; and love does not impose its will upon us, or enforce it against ours. Love woos and wins by a principle far higher than brute force. Should Jesus return to earth to enforce the laws of His Kingdom with carnal weapons all that could be accomplished would be the erection of larger and more secure prisons overflowing with ever-increasing masses of rebellious humanity. Force does not transform it merely breeds contempt. Love transforms. Love changes the nature. Love wins the allegiance of the heart. Love forms an indissoluble bond. Love makes one. Love captivates the will. Love, though omnipotent, is very gentle. God reigns by infinite wisdom, power and love and the greatest of these is love. Love conquers all! And King Jesus came to earth to reveal that love and the Fathers Kingdom.
SPIRIT OF MIGHT which shall rest upon all of Gods sons is not the same kind of might
known by the people of this world; it is not the might of force, of marching armies, of
clanging swords, of tanks and bursting bombs, for these exist only in the realm of carnal
might. The might of God is spiritual might. If our eyes have been opened by the Spirit of God
we will see that the nature of all our work in the
God for the exalted road that leads to
are looking forward with great anticipation to Gods Kingdom dealings with ALL
NATIONS. Humanity is thirsting for these
living waters from heaven! Let us not sell
creation short. Arise, saints of God, and come
away with the enChristed to the holy mount of God, the Kingdom of the Anointed, the Feast
of Tabernacles, the Holiest of all, the throne of God in the sons of
The day is nigh at hand when there will be no more thick darkness, no more gross darkness resting upon the minds and hearts of earths teeming billions. And at the close of that day, instead of growing darker, the world will have reached the high noon of its light of the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, and its sun shall never set. The Sun of Righteousness is the arising of the glory of the Lord shining in His full strength and majesty, dispelling the darkness, bringing in the day of victory, life and blessing. This Day has already dawned upon us and shone in our hearts, but creation awaits its Day. There has been a dawn for us and, blessed be God! there shall be a dawn for all creation. The peoples of our planet will not remain in the icy clutches of an ever-deepening darkness until all hope is gone, until there is nothing but total darkness and death. No, light will appear more light than the world has ever seen at the manifestation of the sons of Light. The illuminating rays of glory will fill the earth, your earth, my earth, their earth, until all the shadows and darkness of night have been chased away.
All the carnal thinking of man, all the delusions of this gross material realm, all the doctrines of devils, all the superstitions, myths, folklore and fairy tales of religion, all the human creeds and dogmas, all human precepts by which men are taught to fear God rather than to love Him; all political intrigues, all humanistic education and institutions, all the myriad citadels of sin and vice and crime, are to be swept away, replaced by the glorious KNOWLEDGE OF THE LORD AND HIS TRANSFORMING GRACE. The Sun of Righteousness shall arise and arise until there is no more night anywhere in Gods vast universe. No man anywhere will be able to escape the glory of God in the face of Gods Christ. WE ARE THE DAWN OF IT, the firstfruits, praise His name! Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the GLORY OF THE LORD is risen upon THEE. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but...HIS GLORY SHALL BE SEEN UPON THEE. And the GENTILES (NATIONS) SHALL COME TO THY LIGHT, and kings to the brightness of THY RISING (Isa. 60:1-3). And the NATIONS of them that are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honor into it...for they shall bring the glory and honor of the NATIONS into it (Rev. 21:24,26).
manifestation of the sons of God shall utterly eclipse anything we have ever read in the
Bible or in Church history! The
HOW THE KINGDOM COMES
write today to the elect of God scattered abroad that our hearts might be prepared for the
truths that concern the establishment of the
we consider these thoughts, may God almighty grant that His Spirit may instruct us in the
way of truth and understanding. When John the
Revelator beheld the Lord coming upon a white horse, followed by the armies from heaven,
he saw a sharp sword going out of His mouth that with it He should smite the
nations: and He shall rule them with a rod of iron (Rev. 19:15). In the midst of all the confusion and darkness of
this hour the Spirit of God is calling out a people for His name. He is training them in the school of obedience and
refining them in the furnace of affliction. He
is stripping them of self-interest, draining them of self-will, plucking from their hearts
all the deceptive ways of
sons shall be able to raise their voices in mighty declarations of authority. The authority is rooted in their own experience. By the understanding of the Almighty they shall
have conquered the dragon of sin and limitation and death in their own lives. Then shall be fulfilled on the grandest scale ever
the word spoken by the Lord, And these signs shall follow them that believe; in my
name they shall cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up
serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands
upon the sick, and they shall recover (Mk. 16:17-18).
Some people have thought this meant to be able to handle poisonous snakes
without being bitten. Others have supposed it
meant that IF you accidentally took up a serpent, as Paul did on the
The Word of God comes riding upon a white horse, and the army of the sons of God follow Him, all riding upon white horses. What a scene! The horse is an animal that men ride. Its like a car its a vehicle. The horse in scripture is a symbol for THE BRINGING OF GODS PRESENCE AND POWER IN WARFARE. It signifies STRENGTH AND SWIFTNESS IN BATTLE (Isa. 2:7; 30:16; Jer. 12:5; 51:27; Eze. 38:4; Hos. 14:3; Joel 2:4; Heb. 1:8). ...I have taken away your horses (Strength) (Amos 4:10). On the negative side, whenever the word horse is used in relationship with fleshly humanity it signifies human strength. Isaiah 31:1-3 informs us: Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots (that is human strength and human ability), because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong...they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the Lord! Again, Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses are fleshly (strength), and not spirit. For thus saith the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel; in returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and ye would not. But ye said, No; for we will flee upon horses (human strength and ability) and confound the riders on the horses (those who trust in human strength and ability) (Hag. 2:22; Zech. 10:5).
the positive side, wherever the word horse is used with righteousness, or divinity, or the
Lord, or things heavenly, it means heavenly, divine or spiritual strength. And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called
Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war...and the armies which
were in heaven followed Him upon white horses (Rev. 19:11,14). That is, they followed Him in heavenly, divine,
spiritual strength. In Habakkuk 3:14-15 the
prophet, reminiscing about
When the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven riding on a white horse He does not come alone. Even before the flood, Enoch prophesied of this appearing of the promised One, and said, Behold the Lord cometh WITH TEN THOUSANDS OF HIS SAINTS (or, holy myriads of Himself) to execute judgment upon all (Jude 14,15). John saw, and writes, The armies, the ones in the heaven, were following Him (Rev. 19:14). Christ Jesus is the Head and the Leader as He goes before; His holy ones follow in His train, for as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God, and these are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth. They are represented as armies. They come forth as a body of fighters. He has many under His command. The armies of the heavenlies are His, and He does battle with them, by them, through them, and as them, even the called, and chosen and faithful. There is no infantry. There really is no cavalry, for all of the horses are white, and every one who follows Him is of exalted rank. It is an army of princes, a host of mighty dignitaries, kings and priests unto God. Moreover, they have no weapons, except the sharp two-edged sword that proceeds out of HIS MOUTH, which is the Living Word of God. They are dressed in white, for they are all righteous, cleansed by the crimson tide in which His cloak was dipped. He comes as Warrior, Judge and King, and they share with Him in the same character. They are warrior judges and kings with Him. They are clothed in fine linen, pure and white, which is the righteousness of the saints. They wear no armor. They are immortal and incorruptible and cannot be hurt nor stopped.
TYPES OF GOVERNMENT
the world there are a variety of types of government.
There is the Republican form of government.
A Republic is a state in which the rule is conferred by the people to a
certain portion of the people, elected by the
people to represent them. Our country, the
Totalitarian government is where one political party suppresses all opposition. Some examples of totalitarianism are Nazism, Fascism and Communism. In the days of the famed Robin Hood (A. D. 900-1300) we find the Feudal form of government. Feudalism was a system of government by lords who owned all the land. The people worked for the lord who owned the land and their lives were completely dominated by the lord over them. These lords, in turn, were themselves ruled by a more powerful lord or king of the country. Plutocracy is another power which rules this world the rule of the rich. In Plutocracy the wealthy class of people control the government and generally maintain their status by domination of the poor and by keeping them repressed.
of course, there is Monarchy. An absolute
Monarchy is where the king has total authority. Many
of the governments in Old Testament times were Monarchies.
one were asked to define history in a single sentence, he would be wise to say, History
is an unbroken record of the failure of human government. Almost any form of government would be perfect, if
the governors possessed perfection. The
tragedy of human failure is resident in the fact that no government can be more perfect
than the administrators thereof, who are generally no more perfect than the people they
rule, indeed, in many cases less perfect. Never
at any time has there been a nation composed entirely of righteous people, not Gods
NOT BY DEMOCRACY
believe in the rule of the people, by the people, and for the people, I hear many
people say. You do? No you do not.
Not one person who reads these lines who is an intelligent, honest,
God-fearing person believes in it. It is the
most deceiving creed going. You say that you
believe in the rule of the people, by the people, and for the people. You say that democracy is the most perfect form of
government inspired by God and given to the founders of our nation. Let us contrast life under democracy with the
atmosphere of the
what is found on the other hand is
listed in the previous verse. Galatians 5:19-21, is what Paul called the
works of the flesh. This is what he
writes: Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and
debauchery, idolatry and witchcraft, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish
ambition, dissensions, factions and envy, drunkenness, orgies, and the like. It is interesting to note that every one of the
behaviors that Paul listed under the works of
the flesh ARE LEGAL IN AMERICA TODAY! Go back
and read the list again. These are all legal
really, can tell us Americans, what freedom is. Is
not this the land of the free? Nowhere in the
world is there more freedom than we enjoy in this country, born out of a desire to be
free. For freedom we live and for freedom we
die; not only for ourselves, but for others as well. From
countries where freedom simply does not exist, people, desiring to be free, have come to
kind of freedom we have in
me ask you a straight question. Are the
majority of the people in your city saints or sinners?
I would not say that all men in
have been told that government of the people, by the people, and for the people
is a divine form of government, given by the mind of the Lord to our founding Fathers. Where do you find that in the Bible? Nowhere. The
issue is one of authority: is it from God, or from man?
If God is the sovereign authority over all things, then His Word alone can
govern all things. If the ultimate authority
is man, then all things must serve man and bow down to man.
The doctrine of human rights and democracy is the
humanistic replacement for the rule of God by the Spirit.
Man is regarded as sovereign and that is humanism, pure and simple. All forms of government are needed in Gods
great demonstration of human incompetence. Little
as we may like some of them, let us recognize Gods wisdom even in their faults, and
be thankful for the lessons that they teach. We
speak of our present age of democracies as though they were something completely new. That is not so.
In his comments on Jesus healing of the demoniac boy when He had come down from the mount of Transfiguration, George Hawtin has strikingly written, It will not be necessary for me here to endeavor to convince anyone that the world is now struggling helplessly between the fires of tribulation and the waters of judgment. Listen to the news any day at any hour and what do we hear? More violence. More killings. More break-ins. More robberies. More conspiracies. More defrauding. More wars. More terrorism. More armaments. More uprisings. More rebellions. More air crashes. More earthquakes. More tornadoes. More volcanoes, more floods, and more mud slides. More drug abuse. And an ever-increasing number of children born either crippled in body or retarded in mind, and, worst of all, no good news anywhere. The poor, sad, distraught, demon possessed world, groaning and travailing in pain, is waiting for the sons of God to reach the glory and honor of adoption, waiting for the transfigured family of sons to say, Bring him to me.
away in the depths of my spirit I hear the voice of the prophet Isaiah, saying, And
He will destroy in this mountain (the mountain of the
us now carry the thought of the contrast between democracy and the
you are going to have the rule of all the people you might just as well govern a family by
the children, or govern a factory by the employees and apprentices. Government does not come from below, unless it
comes from hell, and that government is Confusion
Certainly that explains in simple to understand language the present corruption in both our nation and our government. The thing that needs changing in this dark world is the sinful heart of man. Out of this dread fountain there stems all that is wrong in human relations. God has filled this earth with every good and perfect thing that man can need. It is all good, just as He pronounced it in that long ago beginning. He has provided it in such abundance that there is more than plenty for all. It is the selfishness and lust of the hearts of the few which result in hunger, privation and want on the part of the many. There is beauty and grace in the entire creation, but the perverted heart of man twists these gifts of God into objects of lust and indulgence, violating the very purpose of creation. The builders of the New World Order each are erecting their gossamer structures upon a rotten foundation. Share the wealth, and in a few years the few will have it all back again. Revise political trends and give power to the oppressed (as it was supposed to be under communism!) and they quickly become the oppressors! Pass laws enforcing goodness, ethics, and morality, and after a short time enforcement becomes lax and as the new generation arises they will throw off the yoke that they hate.
tell you today that I do not believe in democracy I believe in Theocracy. And I have no hesitation in telling you that old
Abe Lincolns prediction will ultimately come to naught when he said, The
government of the people, by the people, and for the people SHALL NOT PERISH FROM THE
EARTH... Oh yes, it will! The word of God is sure: The God of heaven shall set up a kingdom,
which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it
shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever
(Dan. 2:44). The
principles are at entire and positive enmity with democratic principles. In the
I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the
kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ (Rev. 12:10). The
makes this order so different from a democracy is that the heads are not voted in,
therefore they cannot be manipulated by the voters. The
difference between theocracy and dictatorship is that no man has authority in himself, it
is not a carnal authority and he cannot be a boss and demand servitude. But I would have you know that the Head of
every man is Christ... and the Head of Christ is God (I Cor. 11:3). That is the precise order of headship in the
The business of the sons of God is to establish the Theocracy the rule of God in the midst of men. Only with the mind of the Spirit can we discern the rule of God. Paul speaks of it in Philippians 3:20 where he says, For our conversation is in heaven. The Greek word here translated conversation is POLITEUMA politics! Plainly he says, Our politics are in heaven. Our politics are not out of the Democratic party, or the Republican party, or anybody elses political party our politics are right out of the realm of the Spirit and Power of God. Our politics are the RULE OF GOD BY THE SPIRIT. In all of our life and relationships we have no other politics, no other agenda, no other authority, no other source of blessing to humanity.
the Church is a part of the
ministry in the house of God is of divine appointment, on whatever level it may be. Only the Holy Ghost can do these things. There is no such thing in the
This church voting is all nonsense. I should just as soon ask a flock of sheep to vote where the shepherd should lead them. I should just as soon expect an army to vote as to what general should lead them. What army would ever be able to fight successfully, if all its officers, captains, majors, colonels, brigadier-generals, and commander-in-chief depended upon the votes of the soldiers! I should like to know what kind of an army that would be. If I were on the other side, I should like to meet that army, because I would put it to rout the first thing. I should have no fear of an army where the soldiers elected their own officers and voted whether to go into the battle or not. If they are not pleased today, they put them down tomorrow. If the battle is going badly, they stop and take a vote whether to fight on. They would change about thirty times a month. I would know what could be done with them if I were on the other side. The devil does not give a snap for the man-made and man-run church systems of this world where your ministers have to preach to please the people, or else have the people butt them out of the pasture. Nice kind of thing that, is it not? Nice mess you have gotten yourselves into, treating ministers as if they were cooks. If they do not happen to season the doctrinal soup from the pulpit to your satisfaction, you say, Go! And they have to go. Nonsense!
that harlot system which calls itself the church, they have been applying democratic
principles to what is supposed to be a theocratic institution. Every honest man must admit that the Church cannot
How is he called? In many denominations it is about the same. They generally go upon the same basis that the people have the right to call the minister. Do you not know how the people call the minister? In the first place they have to think of the ministers salary. If they go about it the best way, the committee will say, We will get a first-class talker, a charismatic man with eloquence and charm. He will attract crowds of people, fill this church, and boom the town. We cannot afford to have any but a polished man. The consequence is that they go to the wealthiest business tycoon in the church and say, How much will you help us, Mr. Flesh-pot, to get a good minister? He takes enough time to get the cigar out of his mouth and silently damn them, and then he begins to think. After all, I cannot afford to let these fellows get just anyone, because I put $50,000 into that church last year, and this town must have a man who can talk. Well, I will think about it. So he tells them he will think about it.
last he sends off to some place where there is a promising young rising star, a fellow who
is a go-getter and is talking away. He is
pretty bright. Mr. Flesh-pot, who is chairman
of the committee, and pays all expenses, brings the young fellow to town to hear him
preach some trial sermons and see whether he is the man or not. The question then becomes a question of salary. The whole question of the call being from God is
decided by the salary paid. That settles the
whole thing. You do not expect it to be a call
of God, if there is not more salary paid than you are now receiving. Mr. Flesh-pot, who has not a spark of spirituality
or godliness in him, rules the whole thing. The
committee must do as he says. As a result a
man is chosen who praises society, who charms and entertains, who lives in the world, who
walks after the flesh, who minds earthly things, who will not damage any of the interests
of Mr. Flesh-pot or any of the other pots in the church, who will be very
gentle with sin and every carnal thing. A
meeting is called and this man is put before them, and the people vote upon it. But the primaries have already been
held and Mr. Flesh-pots nominee must be voted for.
What is the consequence? Dumb
dogs in the pulpit! I would rather break
stones in the street than to be a minister of that kind.
And I would rather eat pork and beans three times a day than to be dependent
upon any people for a salary as one of
I fully realize that the conditions are not quite that extreme in many Evangelical,
Fundamentalist, Pentecostal and Charismatic denominations where the people love to think
that they are true to the Word of God and are led by the Spirit. But I have been there and I know, and you
know, that self-pleasing, pride, fleshly zeal, political manipulations, financial
interests, clout of those who have money and control the purse-strings of the church, and
a great number of carnal considerations are always involved where the people call the
preachers and control the ministry. The
will always produce, sooner or later, mans man and mans plan
rather than Gods man and God's plan. This is true in all societies and on all levels
where Democracy rather than Theocracy is practiced. Democracy
in the church or Democracy in the
is the mind of Christ that will order and govern the world in the
of God, Gods Christ, are the instrument to bring the divine order of God into the
lives of all men, for the Head of every man is Christ.
The will of God on earth is in truth the
Ah, God could sovereignly and independently right every wrong and restore the whole creation to purity and soundness and beauty and incorruptibility in an instant with one sweep of His great hand, if that were His plan. But God has a better plan! He is processing a people to bring His peace, His righteousness, the beauty of His nature, His glory and His will to all men and all creatures, beginning on earth, and extending to the extremities of the unbounded heavens. God has not chosen to bring forth the magnificence of Himself in creation independently and single handedly the sons of God are the farmers He is raising up to establish the harmony of His purpose and the majesty of His Kingdom throughout all His domains. The first area of land that He has given us to work over, and bring forth a crop unto righteousness, is ourselves. Today God has chosen to bring His Kingdom to pass in all the earth through us. Plant wisely, water faithfully, cultivate carefully, my brother, my sister, that there shall be an abundant harvest of salvation and righteousness unto the ends of the earth.
Christ preached the good news of the
Theocratic government will yet break in pieces and consume all other kingdoms, within and
without. And He doesnt need your vote! You dont need to believe it to
make it come to pass. It is not going to
happen just because enough people want it to!
No, it is happening and shall continue to happen in spite of all of us
the Kingdom is coming whether the world expects it or not! The world wasnt expecting Jesus two millennia
ago. The world wasnt expecting the power
of God that came at Pentecost. The world wasnt
believing for the apostles to appear on the scene in the power and
demonstration of the
believe in the rule of J.
gospel of the
The day is coming when the devil will not rule any more in any of these places. The day is coming when there will be no more voting in America, no more elections, no more corrupt politics, no more national networks with their stars and superstar newscasters covering major conventions, no more convention halls decorated in bright colors, or delegates wearing loud-colored casual or sports attire, many with outlandish oversized hats. No more whoop-and-holler demonstrations, or thousands with balloons, like little children at play. No more political signs and placards, no more of the usual politics being played secretly from smoke-filled hotel suites away from convention halls the jockeying for selfish advantage, political gain and coveting of power. No more polished speeches and lying orations promising everybody everything and delivering nothing.
day is coming when the saints shall judge the earth; when the overcoming sons of God shall
be given power over the nations to rule them with the iron rod of righteous dominion and
transforming power; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers. Let all men know that it is the Almighty God who is
the designer and architect of all the nations of the world.
The time periods and localities in which nations flourish have all been
pre-arranged by the will of Him who worketh
all things after the counsel of His own will (Eph. 1:11). The truth of this cannot be made any plainer than
it is by Moses in Deuteronomy 32:8: When the Most High divided the nations their
inheritance, when He separated the sons of Adam, He set the bounds of the people according
to the number of the children of
plain it is that it was GOD who, from the beginning, set the bounds of habitation or the
national boundaries of ALL NATIONS. These
boundaries were established in relation to
God set the bounds of habitation for all nations and planted
the sweet singer of
Many precious fragments reveal Gods ultimate purpose for mankind, when ALL the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord, and ALL KINDREDS OF THE NATIONS shall worship before Thee, for the kingdom is the Lords and HE is the governor among the nations (Ps. 22:27-28). Almighty Father! Thy Kingdom Come!
HOW THE KINGDOM COMES
our Lord spoke of the
NOT BY LAW
does the law of Moses give us a body of social, economic and political regulations which,
when applied, will rescue our nation or any nation from its woes? If a serious problem exists in our society, can we
scan the precepts of Moses for a solution? When
we discover the Old Testament law to resolve a moral and social difficulty, is it an
expression of the Kingdom Jesus taught to lift out the regulation as found in Moses and
write it in the law books of our state? Some
are claiming that this is Gods method of establishing the principles and power of
Church goes out and protests abortion, they demand that the law be changed. The people of God go out and protest homosexual
activities, same sex marriages, and a score of other moral issues, demanding that laws be
passed based on the laws of God. They have the
Old Testament mentality that thinks the way to make
Christians who are out protesting abortion and pressing for legislation to ban it and
other evils are condemners of the world. The
spirit of sonship is not in them. The
priesthood of mercy has not been raised up in their hearts.
The spiritual dynamic of the
want to get all the pornography off the news stands. Am
I in favor of pornography? Certainly not! Am I in favor of legislating it out of the land? If I am I become a minister of the law of the Old
Covenant, not a minister of deliverance to creation. I
tell you today, I will preach to somebody, I will proclaim the love and power of God to
him, I will demonstrate the mercy and goodness of the Lord toward him, I will do
everything within my power to touch that heart and change that life with the grace of
Jesus Christ to experience the holiness of God, but I will not compel him by condemnation
and law and punishment that is not the way of the Kingdom of God. I am not a minister of the law, I am a priest of
the Most High God. God is raising up His
Kingdom from within men, not from without men. The
sons of God are Ambassadors of that Kingdom that establishes righteousness in the earth by
transformation, not by compulsion. Mans
government is the instrument of the sword, not the sons of God. We are bound in the spirit to represent only the
interests and principles of the
Preachers travel up and down the land with their fingers pointed at sinners, picking out a new sin, the sin of the week, to preach against. Their whole message is that the media is ungodly, the government is corrupt, the New World Order is a conspiracy, the educational system is immoral, the abortionists, homosexuals, and others must be stopped, and they breathe out threatenings, hell-fire and damnation against the world from their perch high upon a crag on mount Sinai. Thats not Gods way at all! Our heavenly Father calls us to assume a posture that causes the light of God to shine upon the just and upon the unjust. The way of the Kingdom is not human government. The way of the Kingdom is not trying to get everyone to agree on a law that forbids unrighteousness and godlessness. That is the way of mans government, they can only deal with evil by restraint. But that is not Gods Kingdom economy. To reign in the Kingdom the heart of the Father in heaven must be raised up within us. Sin cannot be gotten rid of externally. The whole concept of the Kingdom as taught by the preachers today is absurd.
may surprise some of my readers, but sons of God are not called to point their fingers at
the evils of society. JESUS NEVER DID! God did not call us to crusade and announce, Abortion
is evil, you should not do it. There ought to
be a law! No, I do not condone
indiscriminate abortion. No, I am not for
drugs and immorality and crime. But God did
not call me to condemn the world to condemn either these social evils or those who
practice them. The people of God must offer a
solution to sin instead of preaching against it. And
our solution is not more laws. History proves
that laws solve nothing. Does our war on
drugs remove drugs from the streets and school yards of our nation? Absolutely not!
Did Prohibition eradicate alcohol and drunkenness from
You can get rid of all pornography, you can close down all the abortion clinics, you can close up all the brothels, all the adult book stores, all the nude strip-joints, and all the hell-holes of sin, pass a million laws against sin, send out the army in the streets to enforce them, and sin will still erupt in your very midst because it is the heart that is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked. Outward sins are merely an effect of the inward sin of heart and nature they are not a cause. Man does not sin because he sees sin, he sins because its a nature to do it. The fact is, I couldnt have been anything at one time except a sinner because as long as I remained in the consciousness of Adam I would forever be in a consciousness of sinning. But once you begin to come into the consciousness of the Christ the whole concept of sinning becomes foreign to you. You become centered in a God-Christ consciousness which becomes the spirit motivating your actions, the law of life within. Christ within becomes the animating principle and power of your being unto righteousness. And this, precious friend of mine, IS THE POWER AND THE GLORY OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD!
me say it again the laws of Moses have absolutely nothing to do with the
without number I have heard good people rejoicing in some godly piece of
legislation that is before congress, or in their involvement in the anti-abortion
movement, or that Christians have gained positions on the local school board, or that the
ten commandments are posted in a court room or school building. But consider this, oh tradition bound man! The law was given by Moses, but grace and
truth came by Jesus Christ. May the
Spirit of God make it powerfully real to all who read these lines that the
cannot be legislated. You cannot turn
Let me illustrate. Suppose that there are two meetings going on at opposite ends of the city. Both are led by preachers. One is engaged in spiritual ministry. The power of God is moving and men are coming to Christ, broken, weeping, contrite, repenting, calling upon the name of the Lord, their chains of sin and darkness broken, washed away by the power of God, becoming new creatures in Christ Jesus. Saints are being strengthened, the ways of the Lord are being established in hearts, the plan and purpose of God are being quickened in the consciousness of those seeking the Lord. The other preacher is heading a political movement to enlist Christian political activists in the project of holding demonstrations, lobbying government to put prayer back in the schools, initiate programs to get kids off of drugs, outlaw pornography, nude dancing, adult book stores, etc. Now, which of these two preachers is acting as an Ambassador of the Kingdom of Heaven; which of these preachers is doing the work of the Kingdom of God; which of these two is causing the Kingdom of God to come upon men; which of these two is introducing men to the Realm of Heaven; which is reigning in some measure with Christ from His throne of heavenly power?
should be no doubt in any spiritual mind. The
soul-saving preacher is certainly moving in a dimension of the
is my deep conviction that the time appointed of the Father for the manifestation of the
sons of God is nigh at hand. Sons of God shout
it loud and clear! Let the earth know her
redemption draweth nigh! The King of Love is
coming! Hallelu-yah! The Deliverer is coming out of
dont misunderstand me. I certainly am
not opposed to good and godly laws in our land, nor to Christians exerting their influence
for righteousness in society or government. That
is all well and good and to be commended, and I praise God for it. JUST DONT CALL IT THE
This is why I have consistently refused to become involved in movements, or organizations, in campaigns, crusades, and whatever work is dedicated to anti something. If I become a militant moralist to fight the degeneracy in our midst, if I work myself to death screaming against the communists, if I labor day and night warning Gods people and the nation against politicians, the Illuminati, the world bankers, the Tri-lateral Commission, the United Nations, the New World Order, and all the other conspiracy theories will it deliver even one soul from the power of darkness and translate him into the Kingdom of Gods dear Son? Will it lead to transformation and to the glorification of as much as one life rescued from the power of hell, and raised up to sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus? The answer is abundantly clear. Gods purpose for His chosen ones is to become a part of THE STONE THAT IS CHRIST, which is cut out of the mountain without hands. It is a Kingdom not of this world, out of the heights and depths of God. BECOME WHAT CHRIST IS that is the goal which He has set before us. In becoming what He is, we become a part of that MIGHTY STONE which shall smite the kingdoms of man and become A GREAT MOUNTAIN to fill the whole earth. Nothing less than that can satisfy the call of God upon our lives. There is nothing else we can do to correct the worlds ills. It will not be healed through religious efforts or through political schemes. The only remaining hope for the world is for the Lords elect to become ONE WITH HIM WHO IS THE MIGHTY STONE which shall destroy all these kingdoms and become a great mountain that fills the whole earth. And when we have sought the Lord and have given ourselves unreservedly to Him, He will speak to us as He did to Isaiah: Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles (nations) shall come to thy light, and kings (rulers, governments) to the brightness of thy rising (Isa. 60:1-3).
THE NEW MAN OF THE KINGDOM
world today needs the new men that Christ makes. New
men are the key to everything else that must be renewed.
Therefore the making of new men is the first priority of the
At every point we are driven to the need for new men a NEW CREATION. Through two world wars men dreamed and talked of the coming of a better world when the nations would lay down their arms and begin to build that better world. A half of a century has gone by since the last World War and it is not only the same old world, it is a much worse world. We cannot build a new world out of men with old dispositions, old attitudes, old hearts and old natures. The new world for which all creation groans and travails can only be fulfilled by new men with renewed minds, new hearts, and a new spirit.
The outward law of God is given to reveal to us the nature of God Himself. I will use one illustration from the Ten Commandments to make the point. When God says, Thou shalt not commit adultery, He is not simply trying to prevent us from enjoying the lusts of our flesh. He is telling us something about Himself how He is. The only eternal, unchangeable, immutable, invariable, unalterable, firm, fixed, sound, solid, balanced, dependable, reliable, steady, steadfast, ethical, moral and totally trustworthy thing in the whole universe is GOD! Thou shalt not commit adultery it means that GOD HIMSELF is committed, reliable, true, dependable, faithful and trustworthy. He keeps His commitments. He keeps His covenant. He honors His word. He is faithful in all His involvements. He will not cheat on you, lie to you, deceive you, betray you, forsake you or fail you. He loves you and will take care of you, cherish you, nurture you, protect you, and cleave to you. He does not chase skirts, He will not abandon you for greener grass on the other side of the fence. He is not adulterous, with a roving eye and a lying, cheating heart. He is love, He is good, He is faithful, He is persevering, and His nature is constant, abiding and unchanging. THAT IS HOW HE IS! When you understand the nature of one who is not adulterous in thought, desire or action, you understand something about the character of God. And that is how He wants us, His sons, to be! His law reveals His nature. Study deeply the laws of God under the Old Covenant and you will learn the heart of God. And when His law is written in our heart, His nature how He is is inscribed upon the tablets (genetic code) of our Inner Son.
great faithfulness and unchanging nature of God is revealed with divine clarity in the
words of the Lord through the prophet Hosea to backsliding
is called nature in man is called instinct in animals. For years debate has been underway amongst the
modern-day scholars over whether instinct is real or not, or whether what appears as
instinct in animals is really taught or acquired characteristics. For a long time no conclusion was ever really made. Then, not too many years ago, a scholar by the name
of Dr. Maurice, decided that he wanted to conclude, once and for all, the lasting debate
of instinct. He went to
Maurice thought that he could test the reality of instinct by taking two eggs from a
weaverbirds nest in South Africa, bring them to America, and then hatch those eggs
and raise the birds isolated from the others of their kind, never being exposed to this
strange behavior. And that was what he did. He hatched those eggs, raised the birds, hatched
the eggs from those birds and raised them, and did this until he had raised five
generations of weaverbirds here in the
There would never be a broken home, a heartbroken wife or husband, or deserted and destitute children if the nature of God was written in all mens hearts. There would be no bigotry, no hatred, no crime, no war, no evil or trouble anywhere on earth if the nature of God was written on all mens hearts giving them a heart in the likeness of His own and a mind as the mind of Christ. From the redeemed and transformed heart the law (nature) of God flows forth as a river of life. We still have those among us who thunder the letter of the law from Sinais mount but all such will change their tune if ever they stand with the Lamb of God at Calvarys hill, for there they find God removing His law from the external tables of stone to write them upon the fleshy tablets of the hearts of new born men, who no longer keep the law because they cringe in fear, but because the spirit of that law has become their nature, the law of life within them.
you imagine the United States Government passing one massive law that says, WE
FORBID ANYMORE CRIME OF ANY KIND. and it worked! Impossible. Laws
are on the outside; you read them; you think about them; and if you have any morality at
all, you even try to obey them, at least when the patrol car is driving in your lane of
traffic, or when anyone is looking who might report, expose, or punish you if you do not. Edicts of men are issued, but they cannot be
imparted. You talk them, but few walk them. So laws cannot change the inner man; nor can the
best of men follow the totality of any laws laid down in his behalf. That is why there is such torment and slavery under
the law, for we have become aware now of what God defines as sin, yet we struggle with it
nonetheless. But when the law is written in
the heart no longer do men try to love God contrary to nature, but now, possessing the
nature of God, love, joy, peace and righteousness flow like a river from the heart. This is the power and glory of the
lies the important significance of the great truth Jesus proclaimed when He explained
where the Kingdom is and how it does not come. The
is my deep conviction that social issues, economic issues, moral issues and political
issues can be dealt with adequately only at the level of individual conversion. When the firstborn Son of God came into the world
to reveal the salvation and
the sons of God destined to bring deliverance to the whole creation, dare we follow in the
footsteps of HIS holy wisdom? The heart of any social, economic or political
problem lies in the heart of individual men and women.
New social structures and systems, new laws, new judicial systems, new
political systems, new economic systems, can never solve the problem so long as the heart
of man remains selfish and corrupt. Only when
men pass over by conversion from self-centeredness to God-centeredness can the
far-away Patmos John the Revelator penned the record of his vision: And I saw in the
right hand of Him that sat upon the throne a book written within and on the backside,
sealed with seven seals (Rev. 5:1). John
saw the book that is written within. He saw
that new covenant that God would make with the house of
Men make godliness a law rather than a life. God said! they thunder from their pulpits high upon the craggy pinnacle of Sinai, and then lay an outward rule and observance upon the people Dont wear make-up, dont wear shorts, dont wear jewelry, dont cut your hair, dont go to movies, dont dance, dont smoke, dont drink, dont remarry if divorced, be in church every time the doors open, submit, pay tithes... and on and on the list goes...dont, dont, dont, and do, do, do! And if you fail to keep their laws, rules, regulations, and requirements you will burst hell wide open, they threaten. They kill people with the letter of the Word, missing entirely the spirit, the compassion of God, the love of God, the heart of God, and the ability of God to grow men up into the stature of Christ and establish His will in each and every life. People have been forced to go to the world to find some mercy, some encouragement, some understanding, some answers and solutions, some help because they couldnt find it in the church, the preachers had no grace, no mercy, and no wisdom from the Lord. Christian ministers of the grace of God LEGISLATING THE LAW! What an enigma! What a travesty! But the Bible says! you contend. You hypocrites! You dont even know what the Bible says! You know the letter that kills! You have never perused the pages of the blessed book which GOD IS, the revelation of God in Christ Jesus the spirit that gives life! The New Testament is not that black, leather-bound book we call the Bible. The New Testament, the true Bible, the Living Epistle of Christ is the law of His life written upon the fleshy tables of the heart.
Ray Prinzing shared the following story which clearly illustrates the truth I now write. A certain woman who had been raised under the bondage of the law of thou shalt and thou shalt not of a certain group, rebelled against it all and went her own way, and eventually became a slave to drink. In due time her past church acquaintances came to her with more of their thou shalt not to see if they could turn her away from her alcoholism. She already knew the futility of trying to quit in herself, and said to them, When God writes on my heart, Thou shalt not drink, then I will not drink. Not long thereafter, GRACE sovereignly came to her, HE WROTE IT UPON HER HEART, and she was immediately delivered from alcohol. Christendom would impose their standard from without, HE WRITES IT WITHIN, AND IMPARTS THE ABILITY TO LIVE IT OUT! That is GRACE!
Mankind does not need a new social order, a new political system, or a new set of laws. All mankind needs is CHRIST. Furthermore, the whole world needs a revelation of Christ of unprecedented proportions and unparalleled intensity, power and glory. Creation needs the manifestation of the sons of God. Creation groans with unutterable longing for the full manifestation of God in His sons. Sonship is the hope of the world and all creation! It is my deepest conviction that it is through the ministry of the sons of God that all nations will clearly and powerfully hear the Voice from the throne of God proclaiming with divine, heavenly authority, Behold, I make all things new!
new order of the fullness of the
Now, God is getting to the heart of the matter. The judgments of this present time will not be outward, literal judgments such as war and other calamities, as most think. The judgments of the Lord upon mankind will be moral and spiritual. What good can it possibly do to focus on the results of evil when God is dealing with the root cause of all iniquity? Must we kill the popes to eliminate all iniquity? Nonsense! Or should we wipe out all the suspected anti-christs? More nonsense! We must witness an all-out attack against the root cause of all iniquity, which is the carnal nature in all of us. And the Spirit of God is beginning now to deal with this carnal nature by removing him first from His elect. We are approaching the time of the harvest of the firstfruits. God is dwelling within us as a consuming fire (Heb. 12:29) to purge us of the carnal nature. This is the day when all enemies shall be made His footstool. When He has cleansed us of the carnal nature, He will then send His consuming, fiery presence to cleanse others, each man in his own time and order. This is our Fathers purpose in redemption and restoration now coming to fulfillment. And He is beginning this work with us.
rulers and despots rise up to become strong in military might and power. They think they have the power to take over the
world, but they are mistaken. God has a plan
already in effect by which He shall destroy the power of the carnal, Adamic nature that
drives them, put them under His feet, and make them all subject to the dominion of His
kingdom. And Fathers great plan and
purpose is now beginning to take effect as He reveals the seat of all iniquity within us,
and commences to destroy this evil, Adamic man. The
evil rulers and despots, the new agers and other political, governmental rulers may think
they will usher in a new era of peace and prosperity, but they are wrong. Gods plan is already in effect, and it does
not include their carnal ambitions. He is
beginning the new age of the dominion of His kingdom of peace and righteousness, and He is
beginning it with you and me. It is within you
and within me that His kingdom must begin. Therefore,
He must remove this carnal nature from those of us who are the firstfruits, or the
infrastructure, of this most glorious and righteous
saints of God, you have been chosen to begin the new world order of the
every aspect of the
HOW THE KINGDOM COMES
our last Study I wrote of the great truth that the
it be thoroughly known and understood that the law God has ordained to govern those
outside of Christ is not Gods law, but mans law.
Every nation, every state and province, every city, town and community is
regulated by the law of man. Under the Old
Covenant the law of God was given to only one nation out of all the nations of the world,
the nation of
To these words of Jesus the apostle Paul adds his testimony: Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to Him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God. But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, the man that doeth them shall live in them. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster (Rom. 7:4,6; 6:14; Gal. 3:10-12,24,25).
THE LAW RESTRAINS EVIL
man who keeps his bulldog tied to a fence has no right to brag that the dog has never
bitten the mailman. How could the dog bite the
mailman? If the owner wants to brag about his
dog, let him set the dog free; then everyone (including the mailman) will know the dogs
true nature. There you have the difference
between the law and the
A brother once wrote: While I was pastor in a certain city, a man who had been a Christian for twenty years approached me after one of our services. I enjoyed your message, he said with a smile, but I really need more hellfire-and-damnation sermons to keep me in line. The man had been a believer for years, and yet he had not matured enough to take responsibility for himself. He wanted to be told what to do and when to do it. Is God pleased by such an attitude? Would the father of a twenty-year-old man be pleased to hear his son say, Dad, I need to be kept in line?
As a teenager, I participated in a ministry to the inmates of the Louisiana State Penitentiary. During my visits to the prison, I became friends with an inmate who claimed to be a Christian. But each time the man was paroled he would immediately commit a crime and return to prison. One day I asked him why he couldnt stay on the outside. His answer astonished me. He said, I cant handle life on the outside, man. It scares me, all those decisions. No, back here they tell me when to get up, when to eat, and when to go to bed. He had to have the restraint of law and order over his life end quote.
Learn this, O man, and you will understand a great truth. There are people in this world that must be ruled by law, and God has ordained it so. When God instituted His first law He said, If you do not live by it, you shall die. You have to understand that the law of God began in that long ago beginning in the garden of Eden, for that is where the first rule was laid down and the first penalty for breaking that rule was experienced. God has still ordained that the world be ruled by law. The vast majority of men, at this time, must be ruled by law. The Lord has established in the world two orders of government, one order is for the lawless, the other is for the righteous. The order for the lawless is law, and the order for the righteous is the spirit. Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners (I Tim. 1:9). There is therefore now no condemnation no adjudging guilty of wrong for those who are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit. For the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death...for as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God (Rom. 8:1-2,14, KJV & Amplified).
can be dealt with only in one of two ways it must be restrained, or it must be
remedied. Human government is ordained by God
for the restraint of evil. Let every
person be subject to the governing (civil) authorities.
For there is no authority except from God; and those that exist do so by Gods
appointment. Therefore he who resists the
authorities resists what God has appointed and arranged in divine order. And those who resist will bring down judgment upon
themselves receiving the penalty due them. For
civil authorities are not a terror to people of good conduct, but to those of bad
behavior. For he is Gods servant for
your good. But if you do wrong you should
dread him and be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is Gods servant to execute His wrath (His
punishment) on the wrongdoer (
There are a great many people who must be governed by a strong hand without their consent. When it comes to the restraint and punishment of evil the governed lose their right to be governed with their consent. They remind me of a very clever cartoon of a little boy who disputed that point with his mother. He had been studying in school about the right of the governed under our Constitution to consent to all government above them, and it had gotten into his mind. He had stolen apples, and his mother had warned him, but it had no effect. So she was spanking him. The little man turned around and said, Mama, I object. Our glorious Declaration of Independence says that all just government must rest upon the consent of the governed, and I do not consent! There are a great many children who will not consent, and they have to be governed whether they consent or not. There are a great many people who will never, short of Gods salvation, consent to do right. You have to govern them with a strong hand. We all need God to rule us one way or the other.
Government speaks of ORDER. Without government there would be only chaos. Do you know the difference between a mob and an army? The difference is discipline. Order is the difference. An army is orderly. An army moves in governmental order, under submission to chains of command. An army is controlled by an inward state of being. A mob is not controlled by anything. A mob gets out of hand, burning buildings, looting, lynching. There is no order, no inward law of responsibility. There is only one way to bring a mob under control by the law, by force. They must be subdued by tear gas and bullets and carried away in paddy wagons. They must be restrained. If there is a remedy it must come later, through different means.
It is for this very reason that wicked men are shut up in hell, reserved under chains of darkness, awaiting a day of deliverance and release. God restrains wicked men until according to His purpose He can save them. With the release of the mystery of iniquity into the Adamic race, the wickedness of man soon became great in the earth, and by Noahs day we find that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually (Gen. 6:5). God allowed mans sin and violence to go a certain course for a certain length of time, knowing full well just how far He could allow man to express these evil inclinations, and just where to draw the line. At the appropriate moment the spirits of these wicked men were put in prison, as society today puts a criminal in prison; the flood swept them away into hell and hell restrained the Antediluvians from committing more wrath upon the earth.
God only restrains until He can save! That is
precisely why Jesus, after His death and resurrection, went to PREACH to these spirits in
prison, the spirits of the men who had been disobedient in the days of Noah. To them He carried the word of reconciliation,
showing not only that Christ had died for their sins, but that He was risen for their
justification. If perchance our minds are
numbed with the wonder of such a thought, let us consider the record of this great event
Despite the crafty and deceptive efforts of some to twist and explain away the plain meaning of this passage, it reveals that Jesus, after His death and resurrection, went and preached, not to men in the flesh, but to SPIRITS in prison; not to angels, not to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob or any of the other Old Testament saints, but to those men who had been DISOBEDIENT to the preaching of Noah in the days preceding the flood! And what did He preach to these long-departed spirits? Well, I Peter 4:6 certainly answers this question! The passage is only a few verses further on from the one under consideration, and as Peter continues speaking of the same subject we are informed, For this cause was the Gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit... The message is clear though these were dead so far as their flesh bodies were concerned, and lived on only in the spirit, but not in the flesh, THE GOSPEL WAS PREACHED UNTO THEM that they might be judged, or dealt with, the same as men who were alive in the flesh. Please notice, precious friend of mine, it was not doom or gloom or judgment or eternal damnation that was preached to these, but THE GOSPEL, the GOOD NEWS WHICH IS THE POWER OF GOD UNTO SALVATION, was PREACHED even to these spirits in prison, the disobedient ones!
is written in the plainest of plain language. But
there are some people who will not understand plain speech.
They do not believe that Christ went down into hell to preach the gospel to
dis-embodied spirits of wicked and rebellious men; they think He went somewhere down in
the heart of the earth to rescue Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and all the Old Testament
righteous people out of a place called
The law is done away in Christ. For the man in Christ the only law is the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus which makes us free from the law of sin and death. I said earlier that there are only two ways in the universe, in the wisdom of the Almighty, to deal with evil it must be either restrained or it must be remedied. In Christ is found the eternal remedy. In Christ men are forgiven, cleansed, changed, transformed, and made whole by the power of His Life. But for every man outside of Christ the law remains. I say for those who do wrong, if they do not embrace Gods government of grace, then the next thing to do is give them the law. This club is not administered by the sons of God, for the sons of God are not Gods policemen, neither Gods bailiffs nor His prison guards. Sons are not called to that ministry. I would have a real problem being a sheriff or a policeman. Jesus never administered the law, He never enforced any of its demands, nor inflicted any of its penalties. His whole administration was one of mercy, forgiveness, love and restoration. The sons of God are on the side of the remedy, not the side of restraint or punishment. I have no condemnation of those who serve in law enforcement. It is ordained by God! But sons have a different calling, a higher calling. Sons are always on the mercy and deliverance side, for that is the order of the Priesthood of Melchizedek which is the order of the Son of God. God has committed unto us the word of reconciliation and the ministry of reconciliation. But to human government God has committed the ministry of restraint. The law administration must in Gods due time pass away before the all-conquering Light of Life. There will never be enough law enforcement officers to stem the present overflowing tide of evil in the world! This darkness can only be dispelled by the blazing light of Gods Christ. And His light is now arising in His elect at this junction of ages to dispel the darkness. We may expect tremendous things from His bountiful hand during this new Day!
THE PRIESTHOOD OF LIFE
we follow on to know the Lord in this new and living way, it is with confidence that the
Spirit of the Most High will direct our steps and open our understanding. We are at the point in history, at the breaking of
the dawn of a new age, when only God can lead us step by step into the NEW ORDER He has
prepared for us. No man but Jesus has trodden
this way before. Only HE can teach us the path
of sonship, and direct our steps on the highway to
desire to speak with perfect frankness, for I do not wish to be misunderstood. I do not believe that Gods elect today is
bound either by the example of Jesus Christ in the flesh, or of the first twelve apostles,
or of the New Testament Church. While Christ
certainly left us an example, that we should follow in His steps where the great
principles of sonship are concerned, if you attempt to bind me to the exact modes of Jesus
Christ and to follow in His example in all things, I will not do it. Jesus the Christ was born in a stable and laid in a
manger, was He not? Am I to go away and have
my next baby my wife will never have any more babies, but if she had any more
babies am I to go away and hunt for a stable in which our baby is to be born? Am I myself disqualified from manifested sonship
because I was born in a bedroom in a brick house in
Because God by His boundless grace through many years enabled me to travel and speak in homes, halls, conference rooms and church buildings, am I going to say, The firstborn Son spoke only on the mountain sides, and by the lakes; if the people are to hear me, they have to all come to the mountain. That is not it at all. We are to follow Christ in the same Faith, in the same Hope, in the same Love, in the same Nature, in the same Wisdom, in the same Patience, in the same Obedience, in the same Vision, in the same Relationship with the Father, in the same Power, in the same spirit of Forbearance and Mercy and Compassion for humanity, and with the same Courage in fighting sin and sorrow and death.
If you tell me that I am to follow the example of the apostles, I say No, I will not do any such thing. The apostle Paul, for instance, went away and shaved his head at Cenchrea for a vow. How undesirable it would be for me to go away and shave off the little hair that is left on my head just because I want to follow the example of Paul! The apostle Paul did a number of things I would not care to do. He rather boasted that he did not have a wife. There is no doubt that he was a widower, because he would not have been a member of the Rabbinical Council, and would never have been an official witness at the death of Stephen, consenting to that death, unless he had been a Rabbi of rank. A member of that Council must needs be a married man. I agree with some of the Bible scholars, that the apostle Paul was probably a widower at the time he wrote the epistle in which he writes about the virtues of not having a wife. But I am a married man and have no leading of God and no desire to be otherwise. Am I to follow Paul, or the Spirit?
am not going to follow in the footsteps of Peter, because I think we may learn a few
things, and keep away from doing some things that Peter did.
I hold, and I teach, and I will teach, that the example of even Christ
Himself is not to be wholly followed. It is
not as many as are led by what Jesus did two thousand years ago, who are the sons of God;
but as many as are led by the Spirit, they are the sons of God. We are not to have enforced poverty because Jesus
made Himself poor. We are not to gather around
us twelve disciples because He had twelve disciples. We
are not to work at getting ourselves assassinated because He was hung on a cross by a mob. If we are LED BY THE SPIRIT to offer ourselves in a
martyrs death, gladly will we do so; but we shall not seek it as a means of
following in Jesus footsteps. We are not
to expect to have a ministry that lasts only three and one half years, nor to ascend into
heaven before our disciples just because He did. We
may never spit in the dirt and make clay to anoint a blind mans eyes. We may never go to a Convention and with whips
chase out those who sell books and tapes (although I have been tempted!), as Jesus did
those who sold doves and pigeons in the temple in
the religious systems the order, the method, the technique, the organization, the creed,
the liturgy is all-important. And in the
so-called New Testament Churches it is no different they just have a
little different system, one from two thousand years ago, they are trying to reproduce. But in the Melchizedekian Order THE
what is the best way, the right way, the sonship way to heal a blind man? No one can tell you not even Jesus! What is the best way to preach the Gospel? No one can tell you, although the seminaries think
they can! What is the best way to hold a
meeting? Again no one can tell you. Jesus never had a song leader or worship director,
never by singing, clapping, or worshipping created an environment for the
Father to manifest Himself in their midst. Yet,
if you were to ask me what the right way is, I would have to say that I do not know. I really do not know what is the right way to do
anything. I do not know the right way to meet
humanitys needs, or solve the saints problems, or bring people into the
present truth. In the Bible you cannot find
THE RIGHT WAY to minister or to do the work of the Kingdom.
This is because the
of the most intriguing descriptions of the unique character of the High Priesthood of
Jesus is found in Hebrews 7:17 wherein it is stated, Thou art a priest forever after
the order of Melchizedek. The order of
Melchizedek is an order of King-Priests. For
this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God...first being by
interpretation King of Righteousness, and after that...King of Peace (Heb. 7:1-2). There were the Levitical priests of
the Lord have mercy upon all who cherish the hope of sonship that we may be delivered from
anything other than the life of this priesthood. Christ
Jesus is a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek, which is after the power of an
indissoluble life. He is the High Priest of
this order, and there can be no High Priest apart from a priesthood. The writer to the Hebrews tells us that the order
of Melchizedek is the order of the Son of God. Just
as the firstborn Son is the High Priest of the Melchizedekian Priesthood, so are the other
sons of God the body of this glorious Priesthood of Life.
They are kings who reign by life and priests who minister life. Of these it is written, Thou hast made us
unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth (Rev. 5:10). It is this dual order of King-Priest that
identifies these overcoming ones as pertaining to the order of Melchizedek. We must learn this one lesson, that the Melchizedek
Priesthood is known only by the OUTFLOW OF HIS LIFE. Then
we will enter into the Holiest of all to abide there in His presence until we come out
from His presence with the heavenly and eternal bread and wine to minister to creations
needs. The order of Melchizedek is not in any
way related to so-called
LAW VS. LIFE
A dear sister in Christ, Michelle Sperber, has graciously given me permission to share one of her beautiful parables which speaks so eloquently of this Kingdom order and ministry of Life. She writes: There was once a Kingdom down by the sea by the name of Peace. It wasnt a big Kingdom, but it was a happy one; and all the people rested in the Knowledge of Good. The King whose name was Teachable Spirit was married to Queen Tender Heart, and they had two beautiful girls, Harmony and Grace, and two boys, Trusting and Loyal.
Every day Harmony and Grace would sing songs to the little ducks that would gather by the pool on the right side of the castle while Trusting and Loyal taught dancing lessons to the chickadees. Now when the chickadees heard the lovely songs, they were filled with so much joy that they would flap their wings so hard that they would exhaust themselves. New Vigor, Trustings faithful companion, would transform them when they fell to the ground, and they would be enabled to learn the dance which they yearned to do since Trusting and Loyal began teaching. The dance was called Together. The dance received such wide acclaim that all the animals of the Kingdom desired to learn it, so before long, every animal, big and small, came to Trusting and Loyal to be taught Together. Even the fishes of the sea were compelled to leave their habitation to learn the new dance and everyone was empowered to overcome all natural limitations.
But in the neighboring Kingdom, the mother of Teachable Spirit, whose name was Bondage Law, ruled. There was no singing or dancing in her Kingdom only arguments and quarrels, sadness and misery. Her Kingdom was called Tyranny. No one who heard of it would dare pass through, for armed guards with iron teeth, that could bite a man in ten pieces, prevented any from entering. Now, Bondage Law was very unhappy with her daughter-in-law, Tender Heart, and her grandchildren, Harmony and Grace, were a real disappointment to her. She plotted day and night how to change her family and most fervently, how she could kill Tender Heart.
One day after consulting with Fear and Torment, Bondage Law visited her innocent family. She planned on overcoming Tender Heart having Fear and Torment as able task masters. When Bondage Law arrived at the castle, her son Teachable Spirit was out riding his horse, Easy Going. Fear and Torment took Easy Going by such surprise that he reared up and threw his rider to the ground. Teachable Spirits neck was snapped and he died instantly. When Tender Heart, who was looking over the balcony, saw all that had happened to her husband, grief overcame her; and in that moment her heart left her. It was taken away by Sorrow and was brought into the darkest room of the dungeon. A black veil was draped over the now stone heart which once was a vibrating, living one, while an invisible flashing sword prevented anyone from coming near it.
A proclamation went out over the land that King Teachable Spirit was dead and that Queen Tender Hearts name had been changed to No Heart. No Heart, with the insistence of her mother-in-law, Bondage Law, who was at her side continuously, changed the name of the Kingdom to War. For you see, now that Tender Heart had lost her heart and name, Bondage Law ruled both Kingdoms of Tyranny and War.
on the day of the Kings death, a dove whose name was Hope was sent from the realm of
the most high with the message that the Kingdom of Peace could be restored if the black
veil was lifted. There was only one
possibility that this could happen, for only the entrance of a king could cause the sword
to cease flashing. The invisible sword would
cut asunder anyone who was not a king. So the
dove flew into the
saw that there was none on earth who fit the qualification but she remembered one in
heaven whose name was Goodwill. Upon thinking
of him and then calling his name, he immediately appeared.
Dressed in the armor of charity, loving kindness, and meekness, he was ready
to follow Hope into the neighboring
They all marched under the Banner of Love, and because they had such power not a weapon was lifted against them all enemies fled at their sight. The Hands of Glory came from the invisible realm to assist Goodwill as he boldly entered the dungeon. Goodwill rejoiced at seeing the Hands of Glory, for it was written in the Book of Books that only the Hands of Glory could remove the veil. In the twinkling of an eye, the black veil was lifted. The stone heart that had stopped its beating became a vibrating, pulsating giver of life again, immediately returning to its home in Tender Heart. A shout of victory came forth in one voice from all the inhabitants of the Kingdom. All were made whole again by this one act.
Goodwill had compassion even on Bondage Law and because the Hands of Glory were with him, he had the power to change her name. Bondage, you shall no longer be Bondage Law, but you shall be called Law of Life, he announced with Forgiveness, his best friend. All those who need to be set free from the law of sin and death will be sent to you, Law of Life, and your Kingdom will be called Righteousness.
it came to pass that one year later, King Goodwill and Love Fulfilled bore a son. It was Law of Life who inspired his name, Joy, and
gave him a Kingdom. It was in the
TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST
AND ON EARTH, PEACE AND GOODWILL TOWARD MEN!
WELCOME TO ETERNAL LIFE!
Let it be thoroughly known and understood by every man and woman who names the name of Christ that the only purpose of the law is to give the knowledge of sin. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin (Rom. 3:19-20). The law imparts the knowledge of sin by contrasting the weakness of the flesh, what we are and do by human nature, with the pure and holy and righteous nature of God. The law is weak through the flesh, Paul said. Man is chained and locked in to the law of sin and death. Mankind doesnt have to learn how to sin, thats all he knows how to do. Mankind doesnt have to learn how to die, thats all he can do youre born and you sin, you sin and you die. No one taught you how to steal, no one taught you how to fly off the handle and say ungodly things, no one taught you how to lie, no one instructed you how to be filled with lust and passion, no one gave you lessons on how to be greedy and self-centered, no one told you at two years of age how to claim your turf and kick and scream if anyone stepped on it. Youre born with it. Its part of the make-up of the natural man.
The law has never, ever, saved any man anywhere from being a sinner. If by nature you are righteous, you need no law. Law is irrelevant to the righteous man. New creatures do not need old laws. On the other hand, if you by nature are unrighteous, the law can in no way help you. All it can do is proclaim your guilt and punish you. It has no power to make you obey.
are always interested in what is going on in the world.
They are always trying to legislate a righteousness of God upon those who
dont even know God. But I have news for
you. Legislation that is, law
does nothing more than make sin exceedingly sinful (Rom. 7:13). God is not the one who is laying law on the world
in this hour. God never did lay the law on the
world. He only gave the law to His people
problem the church world has today is that they are out trying to change the behavior of
unregenerated men by laying the law upon them! Most
Christians glory in death. They find death and
condemnation glorious. For, you see, the law,
even the ten commandments that people would like to see posted in every classroom, court
of law, and government building, is, according to Paul, the ministration of death
and condemnation, written and engraven in stones (II Cor. 3:6-9). But God has no law for the world in this hour. Oh, yes, there is still the restraining law of
human government, but GOD by the ministration of His Spirit
has no law for mankind. For if
that which is done away (the law) was glorious, much more that which remaineth (the
Spirit) is glorious (II Cor. 3:11). God
is working with His people, His elect, His chosen, His seed that He has destined before
the foundation of the world to become His
sons. He has delegated all responsibility for
law and order to the kingdoms of this world. The
only law in His Kingdom is the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus! That is the power and glory of the
church world today is following some really strange paths, trying to lay upon the world
the law that God gave
there are brethren who insist that the
friend, however, is unconvinced and implacable. He
has never been in a desert, nor has he ever in his life seen freezing temperatures. His entire life has been spent in
centuries ago at mount Sinai, amidst flaming fire and quaking earth, God gave
beloved brethren, only the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has the power to make
mankind free from the law of sin and death. Only
as men are raised from the dead by the power of the everlasting Father who raised up
Christ from the dead, can any man fulfill the righteousness of the law by walking in
newness of life. Let us not be so stupid as to
believe that the manifested sons of God will be dispensers and enforcers of law. The terrible truth is that the law is the Tree of
the Knowledge of Good and Evil, that mysterious tree in the very precincts of
wonderful Tree of Life in
was the glory of the Tree of Life in
Hebrews 7:11-15 tells us that we cannot be perfected by the Levitical priesthood. In the order of Aaron there was a continual succession of priests, one dying and another taking his place. One by one they grew old and died: the eye, often filmed with tears, was closed; the heart stood still; the hands crossed meekly on the breast. Aaron died on Hor, and all his successors in mystic procession followed him. The office remained, but the occupants passed. That characterized the whole system; it bore the mark of change and weakness and death. It could not effect anything that was really abiding and permanent, much less anything that was eternal. And it was all because of sin. Every High Priest of the order of Aaron had to offer sacrifice first for his own sins, and then for the peoples. The whole inner life of the worshipper was what the system was, subject to sin and failure and decay.
Therefore another Order of priesthood must arise. Jesus is the High Priest of this new Order. The glorious statement is made that another priest arises after the similitude of Melchizedek who is made after the power of an endless life. This brings us to what is implied by the word endless. This is the Greek word AKATALUTOS which means INDISSOLUBLE. It was in the power of an indissoluble life that Jesus was constituted a priest after the Order of Melchizedek. As the writer to the Hebrews has pointed out, on earth Jesus was not a priest. He would have needed to be of the tribe of Levi in order to be a priest during the days of His flesh on earth, because that priesthood at that time was still in force. Nor could He at that time have been a priest after the order of Melchizedek! On earth His life was dissoluble, or He could not have died for us. Now His life has become indissoluble; and now He cannot die. The mystery of the Melchizedekian Priesthood is the mystery of ETERNAL LIFE.
Christ Jesus Himself is the Eternal One, who abideth Priest forever. His priesthood is unchangeable, for His priesthood is an everlasting one, ever living, ever active. What a contrast to all the Levitical priests, on whose graves this epitaph may ever be inscribed: Not suffered to continue by reason of death. How different is our High Priest, after the Order of Melchizedek! Death tried to master Him; but He could not be holden of it. He continueth ever. He ever liveth. He is a priest forever. WHEREFORE HE IS ABLE TO SAVE COMPLETELY THEM THAT DRAW NEAR UNTO GOD BY HIM. Save us completely! What a thought! Full salvation spirit, soul, and body! Nothing left untouched, untransformed. It is by virtue of His QUALITY OF LIFE that He is able to start the work of redemption and also bring it to its completeness. Because He is of an endless indissoluble, incorruptible life, He can bring all that He ministers unto into this same endless and incorruptible life.
Praise God, the Melchizedek Priesthood BRINGS PERFECTION. Jesus lives in the Spirit as High Priest in the power of an endless life. And Christ dwells within us in the power of an endless life. Each work He does within us He is able to do in the power of an endless life. Nothing can stand before that transforming life. What hope this evokes within us! He breathes His own life into us. He works within us AS A LIFE, as our own life, so that it is our very nature to radiate the glory and power of God. His life as our life within us is the power that must triumph over all the powers of sin and death.
What a glorious path is marked out for us! THE SONS OF GOD ARE A ROYAL PRIESTHOOD. THEIR PRIESTHOOD IS AFTER THE ORDER OF MELCHISEDEK. The High Priest of this Order has run on before and entered the veil into the Holiest of all. And we are running also and are entering that veil. Something marvelous, amazing and stupendous is about to happen, beloved, as we press on into God. God shall surely and truly usher us into the fullness of the Order of Melchizedek. Through His flesh we too shall enter fully the unseen and eternal realm of God and learn of its mystery. Having entered this realm, we shall deliver creation from the bondage of corruption. Therefore I say that the great Melchizedekian Priesthood Ministry will be functioning to the full when the priests of this Order have fully put on immortality and incorruption (I Cor. 15:53). This will be the great manifestation of the sons of God that all creation groaneth and travaileth in pain for (Rom. 8:18-25).
Lord is in the process of bringing His overcoming remnant into THE POWER OF AN ENDLESS
LIFE. It is greater than the forgiveness of
sins, greater than the new birth, greater than Pentecostal power. It is greater than power to speak in tongues,
prophesy, heal the sick, cast out devils, and do signs and wonders. It is greater than witnessing power, apostolic
power, and even greater than power to raise the dead.
Soon, very soon, those powers will no longer be needed because the
manifested sons of God shall arise in the power of the Melchizedekian Priesthood which is
the power of an incorruptible life, to deliver creation from the bondage of corruption. A world is coming where there is no limited measure
of the Spirit, no in part works and manifestations of power in the gift realm. There will be no need to heal the sick, cast out
devils, multiply bread and fish, or raise the dead it is an eternal realm where
everlasting life will flow fully and freely to all creation.
Death is not the grave or the coffin DEATH IS THIS WHOLE REALM IN
WHICH WE HAVE EXISTED EVER SINCE THE TRANSGRESSION IN
can only speculate what it will be like to be in the full power and glory of incorruptible
life. God is moving to bring His holy remnant
into the fullness where Christ Jesus now dwells. No
Christian alive has ever come to this. There
will be a full and complete severing from the earth realm, from the carnal mind, from
fleshly passions, from lack and immaturity, from the death realm with all its claims. God wants a free, heavenly, celestial people right
here on earth, a body of sons totally detached from all that is earthly, limited, and
temporal. It is possible to move into a
resurrection realm that places us beyond time, beyond the thinking and power of the world,
beyond human nature, beyond the bondage of health, security, and death itself. Is that not the greatest power God can give to
mankind to make him an eternal, spiritual being in the very glory of God? And Gods order to accomplish this is very
simple Jesus Christ; then His body, the manifested sons of God; and finally all
creation. Jesus ministers this power to us; we
minister it to creation. THIS IS THE POWER AND
GLORY OF THE
HOW THE KINGDOM COMES
And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever (Rev. 15:11).
The seventh trump is the last trump the conclusion of Gods great Kingdom process. The day shall surely come when the kingdoms of this world, the rulerships of this world, the government of the United States of America, the governments of Europe, the governments of Mexico and Central and South America, the governments of Asia, the governments of Africa the kingdoms of this world, the kingdoms of all the nations in your World Atlas ARE BECOME THE KINGDOMS OF OUR LORD, AND OF HIS CHRIST. They are all His now by ownership, as creations of His hand and under His sovereignty, but they are not His in a Kingdom relationship. There is a time in Gods great Kingdom program when that truth is proclaimed out of the heavens: The kingdoms of this world ARE BECOME the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ. That means that whatever is true of any man who has entered the Kingdom will be true of all the nations of this world, including both their inhabitants and their governments.
Who is the Lord? Jesus is our Lord, for truly God hath made this same Jesus...both LORD AND CHRIST (Acts 2:36). Not only do the Kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord, they also become the kingdoms of His Christ. There are two items listed here as being involved in the rulership of the whole world. The whole world is to become converted to the dominion of OUR LORD and to the dominion of HIS CHRIST His anointed ones, His body. Christ means the anointed. But the anointing which ye have received of Him abideth in you... (I Jn. 2:27). HE (Jesus) shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost. Those who have received the anointing of the Spirit that rested upon our glorious Head and Lord, those who grow up unto maturity in Christ Jesus as the sons of God, form the corporate body of His Christ. Let it be thoroughly known and understood that our Christ is the Lord Jesus, whereas His Christ is His anointed body which in union with Him walks in His spirit, hears His voice, puts on His mind, is transformed into His image, stands in His nature, power and glory, and does His will upon the earth. They are the sons of God. All nations, all the kingdoms of this world, shall be brought under the Kingdom dominion of the Lord Jesus and His Christ. That is the immutable word of our infallible God!
you suppose that one fair morning some sons of God will show up in
NOT BY POLITICS
our recent Studies on the subject of HOW THE KINGDOM COMES we have seen clearly that the
than a century ago James Lewis penned these penetrating words: The establishment of
talk of this kingdom as mystical, unreal. Let
them try it for a month! Jesus Christ aspires
to a sway such as no Caesar, Emperor, or Dictator, has ever been able to command. A rule of marching armies and clanging swords can
do much. That grand Roman power was mighty. It could tax men and make them pay. It could stretch its scepter over distant
provinces, and awe men into submission. It
could say to one man, Go, and he went, to another Come, and he
came. It could command the bodies, the time,
the thoughts of men. It could send men to
death, and even in his mortal pangs the poor gladiator must cry, O Caesar, dying, I
salute thee! One thing it could not do,
even though it bound captives to its chariot wheels. There
is a part of mans nature which coercion cannot reach; a path which the lions
whelps have not trod. To that region man
can retire, and say to all invading powers, Thus far shall you come and no further. That is the region in which the
will have noticed that His promises of help reach the deep, eternal cravings of the human
heart. He has come, not to satisfy a craze, or
gratify a whim, or minister to a passing fancy, but that men might have life. The power of the
If you entertain the crude notion that reigning with Christ means sitting behind a desk over in Jerusalem with telephone at hand and television cameras running, you know nothing as you ought to know of that blessed Kingdom of God which is not of this world and which comes not with outward show, but is righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. And I do not hesitate to tell you that when Christ comes in mighty power to bring the triumph of His Kingdom into new and vaster dimensions on this earth through the ministry of that body of sons so painstakingly and meticulously formed under His hand of dealing throughout this present age, vast multitudes of Christians will MISS HIS COMING because it will not conform to the manner, purpose or result that they imagine it should be. Like the Jews two thousand years ago, these Christians will continue on with their religious games, singing, clapping, preaching, organizing, crusading, and waiting for a second coming and a kingdom that will meet their demands and fulfill their misguided expectations. Ah, we blame the Jews for their blindness and unbelief, and of making the Word of God of none effect through their tradition, but are there not vast multitudes of the Lords people in our own day who are doing this very thing? The Jewish nation was not ignorant of the teaching of scripture concerning His coming and Kingdom in fact, they were good fundamentalists, anxiously expecting His arrival but they had drifted so far from the Holy Spirit of God, that when the day arrived they did not know it because it took the Holy Spirit to reveal it. And as the Jews of old failed to recognize the coming of the Lord and His Kingdom in their day, even so a sleeping church today fails to recognize the signs and events that herald a new and glorious and fuller manifestation of that same blessed Person!
this brief writing we shall take a look at a few very important facts, in order to present
an alternative picture of what the beginning of the
The soul is the seat of self-consciousness, where SELF sits on the throne. That is why God will not share the throne. The spirit is the seat of God-consciousness, and only here will He sit. After king Davids lapse from right living, he cried out to God, saying, Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a RIGHT SPIRIT within me (Ps. 51:10). He never asked for his soul to be cleaned, mended, or renewed, because he knew that his sins had flowed from SELF-ENTHRONEMENT in his soul. Here is the crux of the matter. There will be no street ceremonies, no flag waving, no heralds running here and there, saying, Its here! Come and see! Why? Because the Kingdom is INSIDE man, not for external observation (Lk. 17:20-21). God is looking for a re-instatement of His position in mans spirit. He says to us in effect, You cannot live without me. If you try to run your own life, and satisfy your own desires, it will all end in death. The only way in which you can enjoy life with me is to give me back the reins of government. My government is not oppressive, but gently and firmly persuasive, because I made you, and I alone know what is best for you.
All of us are born with Adams legacy to self-rule. The throne has remained in the human soul ever since Adam sinned, and God does not live there. But each and every person who is enlightened to this fact, and who desires with a whole heart to be under Gods government, can enter a new relationship with God. A right spirit is granted, and God begins to dwell there once again. This is not the end of the process, however, and it is important to see why. The majority in the evangelical world speak about two parties, the Christians and the Non-Christians. But this is an artificial distinction. To accept Christ into ones life is just a beginning, and there is a distinct possibility of God being subsequently dethroned. We have seen young people accept Christ and be baptized, only to reinstate their own kingdom firmly in their souls within a short time. God is not mocked. Whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap. He who sows to the flesh, will of the flesh reap corruption. He who sows to the spirit shall of the spirit reap life everlasting (Gal. 6:7-8). Paul said to the Galations, Are you so foolish? having begun in the spirit, are you now made perfect in the flesh? (Gal. 3:3).
is looking for an initial commitment to Him, a conversion experience. But He wants far more than that! He wants there to be a steadily growing
sons are those who have, through many trials and testings, allowed God to take His
rightful place in their spirits. They began
with but a small reliance on God, but grew to allow Him something approaching total
control. These are the ones whom God will ask
to rule the coming world with Him, and under Him. Antichrist
is said to rule in the
YOU CANNOT BUILD THE KINGDOM!
Kingdom is coming. Thy kingdom come. Only if we truly believe the Kingdom is coming can
we pray that prayer. But primarily and
fundamentally the Kingdom IS. Thine is
the kingdom, and the power, and the glory. The
Kingdom that is, is coming. Men speak of
in the scriptures are we instructed that we are to build the Kingdom. We are told that we can see the
Kingdom, enter the Kingdom, receive the Kingdom, inherit
the Kingdom, and proclaim the Kingdom, but never build it. What is the difference? It is basic and profound. For if we are to build the Kingdom, then it is
something that we bring into life, something that we produce. It is a structure that requires our effort to raise up. It
is an institution that demands our ingenuity and work to establish. But the Kingdom IS.
It is already in existence; it is a present reality, for it was prepared for
us before the foundation of the world (Mat. 25:34). Men
who go out and try to build the Kingdom always fail for they are trying to do something
that cannot be done. Ah, yes, there is an
increase of the Kingdom! But it is not
the increase of effort, but of life. You can
build a house, but you cannot build a tree or a fruit.
Things that are built are constructed by an external power; they contain no
life. But things that grow are produced by an
inherent internal life and you cannot build them. The
increase and manifestation of the Kingdom is not one of mans doing, but something of
life. That is why the
who have seen something of the promises and glory of the
As one has written: So far as the great body of professed Christians was concerned, this entire picture of persecution and ostracism on the part of worldly kingdoms was suddenly changed by Constantine, who himself professed conversion to Christianity. In the year 313 A.D., this emperor put his signature to a decree reading, in part, Henceforth in perfect and absolute freedom, each and every person who chooses to belong to the practice of the Christian religion, shall be at liberty to do so without let or hindrance in any shape or form. How the Christians must have read the lines with astonishment when they realized the implication of this change of attitude on the part of earthly governments! Just emerging from ten years of the bitterest persecution by Diocletian, they were now free to meet and sing and pray and read their scriptures in the open sunlight, anytime, anywhere.
And this was but the first of other favors that were shortly to come to them. The historian records that Constantine ordered the state funds to be used to rebuild their churches, ruined in the previous persecution; he donated land by the acre, built new churches wherever needed in the east or the west magnificent, costly structures. Christian ministers were exempted from taxation and became officials representing the government. Even laymen were shown marked favor in political appointments. Gift was piled upon gift, and privilege upon privilege. Decrees were issued exhorting the public to abandon their ancient superstitions and accept the truth. Complete and expensive copies of the scriptures were furnished to Christians by the state, replacing those destroyed by former persecutors. Could or should they decline these marvelous favors bestowed upon them? Should they decline to avail themselves of the wonderful opportunity thus afforded to proclaim the gospel of the Son of God to the large audiences now forthcoming because of governmental favor toward the church? Should they refuse to rejoice because now multitudes suddenly saw the light?
The church had endured persecution bitter, death-dealing persecution. Now the reverse was true and they were enjoying the favors of the state. Could they endure prosperity? What was to be their attitude toward this new development in the Christian experience? How were they to view the future? The great and sudden relief experienced by the lifting of the hand of persecution evidently had the effect that Satan desired it should, because the historical record shows that the great body of professed Christians at the time concluded that the days of waiting for the Kingdom had ended! One historical writer, in telling about this, says, When they were relieved of their persecution, and came into honor after having been so long reckoned the filth of the world, the cry was straitway raised up that the Kingdom of God had come. The Millennium had begun. The emperor was the visible favorite of God, the predestined overthrower of the powers of evil (by the sword, of course!).
the last session of the Council of Nicea in the year 325, Constantine made a splendid
banquet, about which the historian Eusebius, a bishop and one of the guests, has left us
the following account: The proceedings were sublime beyond description. The soldiers of the emperors bodyguard were
drawn up before the door of the palace with bared swords.
The men of God, over three hundred bishops, some of them bearing in their
bodies the marks of the last persecution, passed by them proudly into the interior of the
palace. Some sat at the same table with the
emperor. One might easily believe he beheld an
image of the very
this, and amidst violent, stormy internal disputes, the nominal church multiplied, for the
state was still friendly and the sons of
But the carnal mind was still the god of this world. While the professed church as a whole entered into these revelries in connection with the establishment of a counterfeit kingdom of the Lord, there still remained a few true followers of the Master who did not share in this viewpoint and therefore did not enter into these unchristian activities. Concerning these the historian says, Some indeed during this century, were disgusted with the pride and arrogance of the clergy and aimed at spiritual simplicity and opposed the general trend; but the only fruit of their labor was that they were branded with infamy. Evidently this little flock of the body of Christ were branded as being anti-kingdom, even as it still is true of some today. When the devil offered the kingdoms of the world to our Lord, He declined the gift, choosing the way of the cross and the life of the Spirit, while carrying out the Fathers plans which must precede the day when all the kingdoms of this world should become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ. But what the Son of man refused, the nominal church, centuries later, accepted, and installed a Roman bishop at the head, who, in the name of God, received the headship of the kingdoms of this world. The great religious harlot was fully born, riding upon the beast. From thenceforth it was woe unto those who dared to be anti-kingdom.
abortive Kingdom efforts, however, were not limited to the large body of professed
Christians who finally became amalgamated into the Roman Catholic church-state system. When the Protestant movement got under way, Satan
still was active both with the small and large groups of Protestantism and almost without
exception these have fallen prey to this master-stroke of delusion. The Protestants, in separating from
other groups have made their own efforts at building the Kingdom. Look for example at the Munzerites of the sixteenth
century, who undertook to establish at Munster a theocracy or political kingdom of the
saints; or the Fifth Monarchy men of the seventeenth century, who believed it was their
duty to establish the Kingdom of God by force, and actually went through a form of
electing at London Jesus Christ as Universal Monarch; or John Alexander Dowie who in the
dawn of this century founded both the Christian Catholic Apostolic Church and the city of
Zion, Illinois as a theocracy headed by himself as Elijah the Restorer. Dowie ruled the theocratic community strictly and
organized the Theocratic party, a political party to compete with the Republican and
Democratic parties for control of the nation. This
party ran in the elections in both
Dowie was but another in a long list of kingdom builders who imagined that
they could build the
what purpose is God bringing us into sonship? Many
will point to the scriptures and say we are being perfected and brought into the fullness
of God so that we can rule and reign with Christ when He establishes His Kingdom on earth. I will not say that I disagree with this teaching
except to point out that Christ has already established His Kingdom in the earth. The man who planted the grain of
mustard seed which is the Kingdom in its inception was none other than our Lord
Jesus Christ. But we need to be very clear as
to what we have in mind when we speak of ruling and reigning with Jesus. The idea that the Kingdom will one day be
established in the earth, after the pattern of the kingdoms of men, and that Gods
elect will assume outward positions of political and governmental power within its
hierarchy is the same carnal-minded error that the people of
first principle that must be very clear to us is that the power of the
I have said before bears repeating there is no greater truth than the truth that
our Kingdom is a spiritual Kingdom, our King is a spiritual King, its citizens are a
spiritual people, its ministry is a spiritual ministry, its authority is a spiritual
authority, its dominion is a spiritual dominion, its laws are spiritual laws, its weapons
are spiritual weapons, its priesthood is a spiritual priesthood, its sovereignty is a
spiritual sovereignty, its power is spiritual power, and its rulers rule only by the
Spirit, praise His wonderful name! You do not
build this Kingdom, nor do you exercise any kind of political
power to further its cause. IT MUST BE
DEMONSTRATED IN THE AUTHORITY AND MINISTERED BY THE POWER OF THE HOLY GHOST. That, my friend, is the power and glory of the
GOD RAISES UP MEN
any kingdom there is order. It is very
important for us to know that every kingdom has order.
It has a king who is the ruler and it has the government which administers
all the will of the king unto its subjects. When
we have been born of the Spirit into the Kingdom Realm of God, we have been born into a
divine, celestial order. Someone asks, Well,
how about organization? Are we born into
organization? Doesnt the Kingdom have
some type of organization? No. We are born only into an organism, a living body,
whereby we receive our identity, our life, our destiny from our heavenly Father. The
other men have also been involved in Gods purposes throughout the ages. When the time had come for God to have a nation as
His witness in the earth, He called forth Abraham out of his homeland to go into a strange
land. There he was to bear a son, and that son
would bear sons and someday Gods nation would be born because God had His man
So it has always been in the annals of divine history time would fail me to tell of Gideon, who routed the enemy; of Samuel and the prophets who as Gods instruments subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in battle, and put to flight the armies of the aliens. God has never judged a nation, met a crisis, delivered a people, manifested His power, accomplished His purpose, or ushered in a new age by organization. He has always matched the hour and need with MEN. When God moved to end that first wicked age of human experience He did not organize the Ante-diluvian Flood Control Association to accomplish His purpose. It was by faith that one man Noah being warned of God of things not yet seen, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world (Heb. 11:7).
No age in world history matches in crisis and potential tragedy the age in which we live. On any moral chart, on any graph of spiritual decline, on any meter of danger and peril, this age is the age horrendous. The age is catastrophic with dark predictions of terrorism, of nuclear war, atomic blasts, thermonuclear annihilation, deadly fall-out, or destruction of the earth by the sheer weight of over-population and pollution. Will God leave this age Voiceless? Will heaven fail to produce a Deliverer? He has never done so. He has always had His man. As Basil Miller once wrote, When God has selected His man, He has ground that man and polished him through the cauldron of human need and suffering. And when the divine process was completed, the schooling finished, His lapidary stones for hewing character burnished His man to a bright hue. God freed His man from obsolescent dogma and creed, and armed him with multifold weapons of spiritual warfare. Then He lifted him forth to captain the forces of right, a thundering voice of prophetic power. In the darkest hours of human night there has always been a lighted torch in the hand of Gods man.
So it is today. God has a Voice. God is preparing to blow a trumpet and rally the armies of the Lord. But this time it is not a solitary man. It is a many-membered man. It is a vast company of the sons of God. The manifestation of the sons of God is the hope of this dying age. Jesus was the seed planted at the dawn of this age as a preview of the Kingdom when Christ with His entire body of sons will appear in power and glory; and His many brethren are the harvest of that original seed to bring forth in the earth the completeness of Gods Christ and the triumph of His Kingdom in all realms. The certain hope of a new age of progression into the unfoldment of Gods Kingdom lies directly before us. The whole creation, that has groaned in travail and pain throughout the dark night of every dispensation from Adam, is soon to hear the joyous shout of the birth of Gods new man-child for this hour. This man shall arise in the midst of the nations and will publish to all the world the glad news, thy God reigneth! And the knowledge of the glory of the Lord shall fill all the earth as the waters cover the sea.
do not hesitate to tell you that I have never been able to work under committees,
organizations, systems, creeds, rules and regulations.
Creeds are not broad enough, dogmas are too binding; organization, systems
and rules are stifling and restrictive man-made instruments of carnality and death. Those called to the Kingdom in this hour are given
an assignment, a commission from the God of heaven Himself.
They are His ambassadors, representing His government. Their orders do not come from headquarters in some
distant city, nor from committees, counsels, boards, or bishops. To heed the voice of men and change one iota of the
assignment would be to betray the
The men who have been the molders of the world for God have all been men full of faith and the Holy Ghost. It requires no faith nor any Holy Ghost to carry on the ordinary program of the average church, for running a church these days is not unlike running a business or corporation. It is all method, system, charisma, public relations, professional skills and program. But faith and revelation cause men to venture into the unknown and develop a reliance upon the unseen powers of God. When there are no roadsigns of mens traditions marking the limits of achievement, when there are no precedents, when there is nothing to go by, as far as sight is concerned, and one steps forward with nothing but the word of the Lord birthed within, depending upon Gods tremendous power, this externalizes the vision and demonstrates before all men the power and glory of the Kingdom of God.
All the great movements of God in the earth have been accomplished through men God has sovereignly raised up with a vision, a message, and an anointing of authority and power. He has never used an existing organization. The proof that the anointing is upon the man and not the movement, is that in every case as soon as the man passes from the scene the movement raised up by that man dies too. It does not in every case disappear from the earth, but generally it stagnates, becomes more organized, and in most cases declines either spiritually or numerically, and eventually disintegrates or becomes something altogether different from what it was formed to be. The leaders who follow just do not have what it takes they are not the man God raised up and anointed with His Spirit!
The religious systems are always exerting themselves to devise new methods, new plans, new programs, new organizations to advance the work of the church and secure enlargement and security for Gods work. This method sinks the man in plan and organization he becomes a cog in the mechanical wheel. Gods plan has nothing to do with organizational structures Gods emphasis is on men. Men are Gods method! There was a man sent from God... The church world is looking for better programs; God is looking for better men.
never heard of a prophet, priest, or king being voted for!
Prophets are very uncomfortable fellows.
They have a strange way that makes them, even when very young, extremely
obnoxious to slow and unprogressive persons who love to be quiet and at ease, maintaining
the status quo. Prophets care for nothing but
for God and His word, His ways, and His will. That
is how the
was a man sent from God whose name was John. The
dispensation that heralded and prepared the way for the Christ of God was bound up in that man John. Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is
given. The Word was made
not made a book, not made a doctrine, not a program, not a method, not a committee,
not an organization but the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we
beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth
(Jn. 1:14). God came in the form of a man,
a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by
Him in the midst of you (Acts 2:22). Jesus
called twelve men as His apostles and gave them not a plan, not a blueprint, not a
system, not an organization He gave them POWER.
But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you:
and ye shall be witnesses unto me... (Acts 1:8).
This vital, urgent truth is one that this age of organization and machinery
knows nothing about. What the world needs
today is not more machinery, not new organizations or more novel methods, but the PERFECT
MAN. Till we all come unto a perfect
man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. The Holy Ghost does not flow through methods, the
Holy Ghost flows through men; and I hesitate not to tell you that the Holy Ghost will flow
most fully and perfectly through Gods PERFECT MAN, Gods NEW MAN, Gods
complete CHRIST, Gods Government of Kings and Priests after the order of
Melchizedek, the manifested sons of God. The
Holy Spirit does not come on machinery, but on men. He
does not anoint plans, but men. He does not reveal His will and His heart to boards
and committees, but to men who walk intimately with God, men who qualify for the fullness
of God. This is the power and glory of the
It is a great mystery, but it is a grand fact of truth nevertheless that Christ first reigns IN us that He may consequently reign THROUGH us. Then shall the King say unto them on His right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, INHERIT THE KINGDOM prepared for you from the foundation of the world (Mat. 25:34). Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD (I Cor. 6:9-10). Now this I say brethren, that flesh and blood cannot INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD... (I Cor. 15:50).
The word kingdom indicates the richness of the heritage of the saints. It is no petty estate, no banana republic, no happy corner in obscurity. I heard a good man say that he should be content with a cabin in the corner of Gloryland or a spot just inside the gate. I shall not be! The Lord says we shall inherit a KINGDOM. We cannot be satisfied to inherit less, because less than that would not suit our character. He hath made us kings and priests unto God (Rev. 5:10) and we must reign forever and ever, or be as wretched as deposed monarchs. A king without a kingdom is an unhappy and unfulfilled man. If I were a poor servant, a servants quarters would be a boon, for it would correspond with my condition and degree; but if I am made a son of God, an heir of God, a joint-heir with Jesus; if I am made a priest and a king, I must have a kingdom, or I shall not have attained to a position equal to my nature. He who makes us kings gives us a Kingdom to fit the nature which He has bestowed upon us.
Beloved, I beseech you to strive more and more after that which the Spirit of God will give you a KINGLY HEART; do not be among those who are satisfied with the miserable nature of ordinary humanity or the childish hopes of the babes in Christ who throng to the churches which are merely nurseries for the birthing, care and educating of babes and which then stifle and threaten to suffocate the life out of these little ones with their own static creeds, lifeless traditions, and infantile programs. They eagerly look for mansions and harps and golden streets and wings and white nightgowns in that glory world above, unable to comprehend that such glittering diadems are only nursery toys to Gods true kings; true riches are ETERNAL SPIRITUAL REALITIES; the true treasury wealth looks down upon the stars. Do not sell yourself short, ye sons of the Most High! Get a kingly heart ask the King of kings to give it to you, and beseech of Him a royal spirit. Act royally on earth towards your Lord, and for His sake towards all men. Go about the world not as mean men in spirit and action, nor yet in false humility as paupers and beggars, but as kings and priests of a race superior to the dirt-scrappers who are on their knees, crawling in the mud after fleeting earthly riches and transitory worldly fame. What incredible loss shall be suffered by those who imagine that financial prosperity in this life is the sign of great faith, blessing and spirituality!
the church world in general cannot comprehend is that the Christ does not rule alone but
through a many-membered body. Man in Gods
image, man in Christ at the right hand of God, is Gods government in the
As one has written, God is exceedingly rich. He is like a successful business man who has an enormous amount of capital. God has a business in this universe, and His vast wealth is His capital. We do not realize how many billions, countless billions, He has. All of this capital is simply HIMSELF, and with it He intends to manufacture HIMSELF in mass production. God HIMSELF is the Business Man, the Capital, and the Product. His intention is to dispense Himself to many people in mass production. Therefore, God requires such a divine arrangement, a divine management, a divine dispensation in order to bring Himself into humanity. Praise His name! As His kings and priests upon His throne the elect sons of God are the governmental arrangement by which and through which God dispenses Himself into His creation. For that reason the whole creation continues to groan and travail for the manifestation of the sons of God. What an opportunity to change things! What an occasion to bless and heal and lift and transform the world! It would be a crime against humanity, my beloved brethren, to carelessly neglect and thus despise, as Esau despised his birthright, the position of responsibility and opportunity to bless and restore creation proffered to us by the illustrious King of kings and Lord of lords! It would be a mean and despicable crime against humanity as well as God Himself to settle for a cabin in the corner of Gloryland!
When you understand that God is dealing and working out His plan through ages, you have understood Gods purpose aright. Is this age and the next the only ages that remain for this purpose to be fulfilled? By no means! Gods purpose through His body is that in the ages to come He might show (put on display) the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus (Eph. 2:7). The message of this wonderful passage is just this: At this present time, in this age, God is showing (putting on display) the exceeding riches of His grace toward us through Jesus Christ. Jesus is Gods revelation of His grace and kindness to the Church gathered out of the nations. That is Gods purpose in this age. But in the ages to come WE ARE THE DISPLAY, THE REVELATION OF GODS GRACE AND KINDNESS UNTO CREATION. That which He has revealed to us in Jesus, and wrought in us through Jesus, will be displayed through us in ages yet to come that all creation by us may then experience His exceeding grace and kindness as we are now experiencing it in Jesus. Hallelu-yah! What a Saviour!
There are three very definite stages that transpire in God's great plan of the ages. In this age the Church is being gathered out of the nations. In the next age all the living nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain (kingdom) of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for the law (authority) shall go forth of Zion (the sons of God), and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem (the bride of Christ). And He shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more (Micah 4:2-3). All this shall take place when the mountain (kingdom, government) of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains (strong kingdoms), and it shall be exalted above the hills (smaller kingdoms); and people shall flow unto it (Micah 4:1). In the age and ages beyond that all creation shall be dealt with and brought into harmony and relationship with God until all things everywhere have been subdued unto Him and God becomes in glorious reality ALL IN ALL. This in a nutshell is Gods wonderful plan of the ages.
Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen (nations) for THINE INHERITANCE, and the uttermost parts of the earth for THY POSSESSION, says the Messianic Psalm. Christ conquered, and He is conquering, and He is to conquer. I claim this earth for God, for He made it. I claim this earth for God, for the earth is the Lords. The sea is His, and He made it. His hands formed the dry land. His power pushed up every mountain, and His fingers scooped out every valley. By His wisdom all things were established. I claim everything that comes out of the bowels of the earth for God, for the earth is the Lords and the fullness thereof and all the gold and the silver is His. I claim every man in El Paso, and in Miami, and in New York, and in Los Angeles, and in Hong Kong, and in Beijing, and in Moscow, and in Baghdad and in the whole wide world, and every man in their graves for God, for the earth is the Lords, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein and it is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves and He hath made all things for His pleasure. I am not willing to wickedly cede even one thing or one person to the devil, as do some, for the Christ came to reconcile all things and He is the Saviour of all men.
proclaim to you, as the minister of God, that the body of Christ is here in this world for
the establishment of the
HOW THE KINGDOM COMES
rules with a great, infinite and eternal love. He
gives all His ability to His sons in love. Love
is the foundation of His Kingdom throughout the universe.
Love is the very essence and atmosphere of the
The King of Love girds His people with gladness. He sows the whole earth with gladness and joy. The news which is sent from His courts lifts the heads of all men. At the mention of His name our hearts leap for joy, and the coming of His presence among us fills us with exceeding wonder. The air is filled with music. He makes the morning break over the everlasting hills with rejoicing, and causes the evening to glow with the fire of His glory. He is the King of Love within our hearts!
Our poor, lisping, faltering tongues cannot proclaim the Gospel as we would like; but we have Gods word that is true for the present time, and for all the times of all the ages: God IS LOVE! IS unchangeably! IS eternally! God is love in heaven, in earth, in hell! Wherever He is He can be no less than He is. If I make my bed in hell, Thou art there, proclaims the Psalmist. God IS LOVE everywhere! And the great practical consequence is for you and me to respond to that God and to that love, to become filled with that love, one with that love, the embodiment and manifestation of that love to all men in all realms. That is the supreme purpose of sonship. Everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God (I Jn. 4:7). And those who are born of God are the sons of God THE SONS OF LOVE!
The best and most wonderful word in the universe is Love. For God is Love. And the best and most wonderful word in the inner chamber of our heart must be Love. For the God who meets us there is Love. What is Love? The deep desire to give itself for the beloved. Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father (Rev. 1:5-6). Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God (I Jn. 3:1). For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son (Jn. 3:16). Love finds its joy in imparting all that it has, to make the loved one happy and fulfilled. And the heavenly Father, who offers to meet us in the inner chamber let there be no doubt about this in our minds has no other object than to flood our hearts, and the hearts of all men, with His love.
But the spirit of love is not in you till it is the spirit of your life, till you live freely, willingly, universally according to it. It knows no difference of time, place, or person; but whether it gives or forgives, bears or forbears, it is equally doing its own delightful work. The spirit of love does not want to be rewarded or honored; its only desire is to become the blessing and happiness of everything that needs it. The wrath of an enemy, the treachery of a friend, only gives the spirit of love an opportunity to be more triumphant. The rebellion of Adam but opened up avenues for mankind to experience and know the incredible depths of the love of God! God IS LOVE. And His SONS are of His own nature. The Sons of Love what a blessed thought! And what a call what purpose and responsibility! Little wonder, then, that the whole vast creation, sold under slavery and bondage to sin, sorrow, pain and death, groans in travail for the manifestation of the SONS OF LOVE!
Those who put on the mind of Christ see all men with the eyes of love which are the eyes of God. How we see men and think and act towards them is a measure of the Kingdom in our lives. Perhaps you have heard the story of a stranger who settled in a town and asked his neighbor, What are the people around here like? The neighbor, a Quaker, replied quietly with a question, What were the people like where thee came from? The newcomer answered, I have come from Anytown. The people there were very mean, dishonest, and unfriendly. The Quaker answered, Im afraid thee will find them all here. A third person who had overheard the conversation, joined in by remarking, This surprises me, because I have come from the same town and I found the people there to be very kind, honest, and friendly. And the old Quaker, turning to him, said, Thee will find them all here, too.
love flows from us like the powerful waters of
Larry Hodges, in one of his SHOFAR LETTERS, has wisely asked, Shall there be a people who will rule and reign with Christ who are not under the absolute dominion of Love? Shall there be a people who shall open and no man shut, and shut and no man open, who are not in perfect accord with Love? Shall there be a people claiming to be Loves true representatives who have not this Love in all its perfections? Shall the rod of iron be given into the hand of any other than Loves own children, the children of the resurrection? What people shall do and speak only what they see and hear their Father doing and speaking but that people that is under the absolute dominion of Loves rule? We may speak well and write much on Sonship, Kingdom, and whatever else we may wish to call this kingdom, but unless we love Love, carefully guarding its beginning flame, we are become as tinkling brass or a sounding cymbal.
The omnipotent power of God is not best demonstrated in violence, throwing thunderbolts and spreading devastation, but in self-sacrificing love and goodness. It is love (not tyranny) that never faileth, and with God (love) all things are possible. God is almighty, omnipotent. That is fundamental. But it is vital that all Gods elect realize that His power is not something separate from His wisdom and His love. Jesus has made it abundantly clear that the power of God is not that of force, violence, or compulsion, but the power of love which never faileth. I, if I be lifted up (on the cross) from the earth, will draw all men unto me. Love is all-powerful and irresistible divine power is simply love in action. The failure to distinguish between the omnipotence of force and violence and the omnipotence of love leads to the false ideas about God and His Kingdom that are so prevalent in the church systems today. It is the infallible answer to those who impudently ask, If God is omnipotent, why does He not stop war, sin, suffering, and all forms of evil? The omnipotence of love is something far grander and more noble than the omnipotence of force could ever be, though it is slower in operation. But the end of loves omnipotence is sure and abiding. Love never faileth! God so loved the world, and when loves power has been played out through the progression of the ages, love will win, will conquer all. Then all men will love God, not fear Him. What a plan! What incomprehensible wisdom!
Almost a hundred years ago Joseph Fort Newton, preaching in London, said, Not until we see God as the Father of all souls not simply like a Father, as a Psalmist said, as if it were only a symbol, an analogy, an allegory, but the actual Father of men, as revealed in the life of Jesus do we behold the highest truth. There is made known what love really is in its utmost sweetness of sacrifice and redemption. Love is social; it cannot live alone. Heaven was never a Hermitage. In that long-ago beginning God did not say, Let me make, but Let us make. Humanity could not worship and adore an Infinite Egoist. Such is the deep and beautiful truth of which the Godhead is the symbol the truth of the eternal society. Older than our religion, older than the human home and the human family, it is a vision of God through the home as a family in Himself Elohim. Love is creation. It cannot be inactive. It must devise order, goodness, beauty, joy. God does not love the world because He made it; He made it because He is love. Here lies the secret of the strange and haunting beauty of the world, and the eternal motive behind it. Love is also providence. It cannot be content with the joy of creation, but must follow and watch over what it has made with absorbing solicitude and care. Men of old seemed to think that God made the world, set it going, and sat on the edge of it watching it. But love is never idle, much less aloof, and it must stoop to share the lot of those whom it serves.
Alas! many in our day, to whom it is not difficult to believe in God, the Creator, find it hard to believe in His loving care. Storms desolate the earth. Pestilence and famine fill myriad graves. Youth is blighted in its bud. Forever the cup of death is pressed to the lips of love. War, pillage, cruelty, and brutality might make human life a hell. There are heartless tyrannies that endure. How can one talk of the loving care of God in face of these facts? Why did not God make a thornless world and fill it with noble men, true women, and a race just, gentle, and generous? Because He could not do it. Character cannot be created; it must be achieved. It is not a gift, but an attainment something wrought out amid trials and tears, as Polasek has shown us in his figure of a man finding himself and freeing himself by laboriously chipping away the stone in which he is imprisoned.
Suppose a man were to have a family created for him in an instant a wife, a boy, a girl sitting about a table in a lovely home which he never saw before. Would it be his family? Would these children be the offspring of the love and sacrifice and pain of his wife and himself? No. He might learn to know and love them deeply, but they would not be his family because not created by his love, not nourished from his heart, and not sanctified by his thought, consideration and purpose. His wife, not having experienced the babe in the womb or the pain of childbirth, would be unable to value the children of the family as highly as she might. Omnipotence does not mean arbitrariness. What love cannot do God cannot do.
There are methods love cannot use, acts it cannot perform, weapons it cannot employ. Divine love looks like weakness until we know what it really is, how it works, and the path it follows. The love of God is more than a mere indulgent good nature, more than an indiscriminate, mushy sentiment. It is wise, and therefore takes the long look; relentless, and therefore seemingly austere; ruling, not arbitrarily, not impatiently, but with inflexible purpose and educative discipline permitting the prodigal to wander if he will, knowing, as he does not know, that riotous living leads to husks, and these to the coming to himself, and that to the painful and penitent return to Fathers house and to the discovery of a love that would not let him be happy in exile! Oh, the wisdom of love!
Of love is born the hope of immortality, and the love of God is its only sure basis and token of promise. What sunshine there is in that truth! The more deeply we love wife and child and friend, the more longingly we wish for immortality. Only men who know not love, who are lonely, disappointed, broken-hearted, devastated, bitter and hopeless desire the solitude and silence of death over life. Only miserable men cherish no hope of immortality! Again I say, of love is born the hope of immortality. The more deeply we love the more surely we may know that there is One who loves our loved ones and ourselves more than we do. Men and women, lay to heart the awful and wonderful truth that God loves each of us as if there were no other in the world, and all of us as though we were one child at His knee. And it is not only His obedient children that He so loves, but the vilest sinner and the most rebellious blasphemer. God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8). Yea, He loves me, even me, distinctly, separately, passionately, unconditionally, eternally how can it be! And He loves you, each of you, with a love peculiar, particular, unutterably precious loves you unto the uttermost, and cannot be happy without your love in return! Let us not ask ourselves whether we love God or not. Let us trust His love of us, trust it in our sorrows, our needs, our failures, our weakness, our sins, knowing that love never faileth for God is love.
What is this Reality which men call Christ? Perhaps we can best make it clear by asking our hearts one question: What is it that we worship? Is it mere Power? No! Power may awe us, crush us, command us, but never yet has it won the worship of the heart. Is it Knowledge? No! An infinite Intellect may invite admiration, but we do not worship Wisdom. Is it Vastness? Not so! Consider for a moment and you will see how a cold, bare infinitude, so far from winning the love of man, strikes him dumb with terror. What, then, do we worship? Reverently let us say that, though God speak with the tongues of lightning, though He have all power so that He could remove mountains or hurl suns into space, yea, though He have all knowledge and understand all mysteries, and have not Love, we cannot worship Him. Only love can win love, and if God be not Infinite Love we cannot love Him, albeit we may cower before Him, trembling and afraid.
Think it all through, up one side and down the other, and you will find that our ideal, our dream, our hope, that to which we pray, is no other than the Spirit that lived in Jesus, shone in His face, wrought in His works, spoke in His words, and hung upon a cross. The Spirit of Jesus in its strength, its gentleness, its august and wonderful humility, its incredible patience, its fathomless pity, its relentless love, its all-forgiving mercy, its victorious valor, its purity, its gladness that is what is meant by God. Beyond that love it is not possible for any man to imagine anything more divine. The Spirit of Jesus is the ultimate Divine Reality so far as we can know it. Where the Spirit of Love is, there God is. Because that Love lived in Jesus in its fullness, richness, its unclouded beauty, He is the supreme revelation of what God is end quote. And, may I add to these beautiful words this thought all the sons of God, who are the sons of Love, are the extension, completion and fullness of that supreme revelation of God unto creation. Hallelu-yah!
once read the moving account of a woman seen constantly on the streets of
it not true that vast multitudes of Christians today serve the Lord either out of fear of
hell or hope of heaven. It is the absolute
truth. Anyone who dares to proclaim the
beautiful truth of the restoration of all men to God and pins people right down to the
word of God is immediately accused by the unthinking masses of teaching heresy, and is
accused of teaching doctrines which give the sinner nothing to flee from, no reason for
accepting salvation. Such thoughtlessness! These poor simple folks are merely admitting in
this that they themselves have never yet had a revelation of the abounding love of God. Nor do they know and worship God FOR HIMSELF, apart
from all other considerations of either torment or bliss. Should the preachers one day
call a news conference and announce to the world, Ladies and gentlemen, we have just
discovered that there is no hell, I do not doubt for one moment that a great number
of so-called believers would immediately tell God to go to hell and commence
to live like the devil in the pleasures of sin. Those
who use hell as the incentive to bring men to God are but admitting their shame in
upholding a false gospel which would attempt to scare men into the
Is there a hell? Yes. But hell is not what salvation is about. For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Rom. 6:23). It is not written that the wages of sin is hell. If the wages of sin is eternal torment in hell, then we must re-write the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. We must make the Bible say that, if that is what God meant. We must go back to the very beginning and make the Bible say, And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely SUFFER ETERNAL TORMENT IN HELL (Gen. 2:16-17). We must correct the word of God so that it says, The soul that sinneth, it shall be eternally tormented in hell (Eze. 18:4). John 3:16 must be made to correctly read, For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not be eternally tormented in hell, but spend eternity in heaven. If the wages of sin is the torments of the damned in hell, then Romans 5:12 must be made to say, Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and torment in hell by sin; and so the torments of hell passed upon all men, for that all have sinned... You will have to tear the Bible all to pieces and re-write literally hundreds and thousands of passages if you say that the wages of sin is eternal torment in hell!
The wages of sin is death. It is not written that the wages shall be death, but the passage we have before us, penned by divine inspiration, states plainly that the wages of sin IS death. She that liveth in pleasure, the scriptures again says, is dead while she liveth. Dead in trespasses and in sins is the way the apostle Paul expressed it. Death takes in this whole dreadful realm of sin, weakness, fear, sorrow, pain, heartache, rebellion, strife, war, sickness, torment, sadness, and trouble in which men walk without the peace and joy and transforming power of God in their lives. It is a sad and most horrible fact that there are millions and thousands of millions of people going about this earth who are the walking dead. Dead to God! Dead to virtue! Dead to truth! Dead to reality! Dead to righteousness! Dead to peace! Dead to joy! Dead to promise! Dead to hope! DEAD!
is the wages of sin. But the gift of God is
the life of the ages. Every man is on one side
or the other; either he is now reaping his wages, or renouncing sin to receive Gods
gift. The gift is not heaven. The gift of God is not streets of gold, gates of
pearl, or walls of jasper. The gift of God is
not a cabin in the corner, or a mansion over the hill top.
You will have to re-write your Bible again if you say that heaven is the
reward of the righteous. Is there a heaven?
Yes. But heaven is not the issue
in salvation. The issue is life. It was this very truth that Jesus was making clear
to us when He said, He that hath the Son hath life, but he that hath not the Son of
God hath not life. The issue in
of preaching a false gospel to sinners, instead of holding up before them fancied horrors
which they may escape, or a celestial Disney World which they may obtain, the true gospel
tells them of LIFE MORE ABUNDANT, of the unsearchable riches of Christ, of the glory of
the Kingdom of God, the Kingdom of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. Who wants to remain a faltering mortal, when one
may be quickened and made alive in God to become the very same manner of being as the One
who created the worlds? Oh, that all men might
learn Gods one and only everlasting Gospel, the Gospel of Life and Light and Love
and then preach it! And BE it! Love alone can draw all men to
What consolation and understanding is inspired by the blessed knowledge that in spite of all the bluster and might exhibited by the kingdom of darkness, the Lord God omnipotent reigneth! God is the King, and His power He rules over all. But, dear one, if you will examine the basis of that Kingship, the Kingship of the Lord from the beginning of the world, you will find that it rests on Gods Creatorship. He is Lord of the world and men and rules and overrules in all their doings because He is their Creator with divine plan and purpose for their destiny. But God wants to be King in and by Jesus Christ that is to say, He wants to be King by virtue not of His power, but of His love. He wants men to reverence and obey Him not because they are afraid of Him, not because they are out-witted and out-maneuvered by Him, not because they cannot help themselves, and even because He promises them a Glory World above, but because they love Him. It is reconciliation, fellowship, union, participation, oneness with man that the heart of God is after.
us meditate deeply upon these words: Our Father...Thy Kingdom come. Whose Kingdom is it?
Ah, it is our Fathers Kingdom. Not the Kingdom of the Lord God of the Old
Testament, not the
The message which beams from the cross of Christ like the blazing rays of the noon-day sun is one of SACRIFICIAL LOVE REDEEMING LOVE. The truth of love in Jesus Christ was that He loved without retaliation for evil, a love that suffered long, even to the agonies of the cross, and then was kind enough to pray, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. And I declare to you that regardless of what other sins those wicked men may come into judgment for, they will never stand in the judgment condemned for killing the Son of God, for HE AND HIS FATHER FORGAVE THEM! This truth of the love of God in Jesus Christ must also be true in us, the younger sons of God. Jesus did not love people because He loved Himself, as it was under the law. It was the Fathers unconditional and all-surpassing love flowing through Him, surging as a mighty river our to humanity, overflowing redemptively, so that He could say, Let your love for others not be based on love for yourself, but on what is true in Me: If the Father could love Judas through Me, and love Peter through Me, and the people that crucified Me, then let the Fathers love so find expression through you.
In years past we have sung a chorus that goes like this: His love has no limits, His grace has no measure, His power has no boundaries known unto man; for out of His infinite riches in Jesus, He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again. This is a lovely chorus and I love to sing it and I say it is true. In Jesus Christ, there is NO LIMIT to His love, NO MEASURE TO HIS GRACE, and NO BOUNDARIES to His power, for He is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, and His mercy endureth throughout all generations and ages. If I say that there is one sin, one condition, one creature, one place, one age or group of ages unto which His love and His grace shall not reach then I LIE and know not the truth. Jesus loved His friends, He loved His enemies, the man who betrayed Him, the man who denied Him, the mob that cried, Crucify Him! and the men who nailed Him to the cross. There just was no limit to His love! You could never find a place where you could say, So far would He love, but no farther. Is that love true in us? Or do we say, Well, I will only stand so much, I will only forgive so long, I will only trust so far, and that is the end of it. It is Gods purpose that His love should find no limit in us, His grace no measure in us, and His power no boundary in us. This is the first mark of sonship.
is preparing a people who, when they stand up and say, God is love, are not
talking about Gods love in heaven, or Gods love in Jesus; no, they will be
expressing the love of God in their own person. For
God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son. Everyone likes a verse like that. But how many would like a verse like this: God
still loves the world so much that He would like to give His sons, right now. We do not like that.
We like to be sons if God will keep us, if He will bless us, if He will take
us to His bosom and not let us go. But
what does God do with His sons? Why, He GIVES
THEM! He thrusts them out into all the
sorrows, tragedies, troubles, sicknesses, pains, strife, hatred, rebellion and death of
this world. Jesus said, As the Father
hath sent me, even so send I you. What
did Jesus also say? This is my flesh, my
B-O-D-Y, which I GIVE for the life of the world.
If we are His body, then will He not give us for the life of the world? Oh, someone says, I do not like
the kind of religion where I do not get something, sacrifice is asking too much. Well, my brother, my sister, that is how it starts,
by receiving, but it must not end there. We
must come to the place where God can give us, where we can lie down and become a channel,
a river the
This truth might well be illustrated by the childrens story of the sun and the wind. In the little make-believe story, the sun and the wind discussed which of them was the strongest. The wind said that he could prove that he was the strongest by blowing the coat off of a man who walked on the road below. So the sun slipped behind a cloud and Mr. Wind started blowing until the man thought a tornado had come up. But the harder the wind blew, the tighter hold the man took on his coat. Finally the wind saw that he could not blow the mans coat off, so he gave up in defeat. Then it was the suns turn to try. The sun came out from behind the clouds and smiled kindly on the old man. Presently the warm loving rays of the sun caused the man to pull off his coat. The sun had proved that the power of love and kindness is stronger than fury and force!
never fails. Sons dont say, Ive
had enough! Perhaps youve said it
too. Maybe youre a parent and youve
told your kids that youve had enough.
Perhaps youre a teacher, and today was one of those days when you sent
a student out of the classroom because youd had enough. Or perhaps your spouse has betrayed you once too
often; youve had enough and this cant go on. Or perhaps one of your workers showed up late once
too often, and you had to let him go. Or
perhaps your neighbor had another wild party late into the night, playing his loud music,
disturbing your sleep, so you called the police or gave him a piece of your mind. Youd had enough and couldnt
take it anymore. Love, however, divine love,
can never say, Ive had enough! If
God had had enough, the
No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us (I Jn. 4:12). Where is God? The question is as old as humanity. And peoples answers range all the way from God is everywhere and in everything to God is nowhere and in nothing. In fact, the question can be shortened and made even more significant: Is God? The beloved apostle John gives us an object lesson to demonstrate the reality and the presence and power of God, saying, No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and His love is made complete in us. John is saying, Do you want to know where God is? Do you want to see God? Do you want the whole wide world to see God so that they can know that He exists? Then, with divine love, love each other and all men and the whole world will see and discover God in it. If we love with that wonderful, God-initiated, self-giving, unconditional love, people will say, So thats where God is! So thats how we know that God is! Its an object lesson that makes God impossible to miss! Creation will respond as the Roman soldier at the foot of the cross responded to the love of Jesus, Truly these are the sons of God!
love does not only love the lovely, divine love does not only love the brethren, but every
man. Divine love suffers long not only with
our loved ones, our wife or sweetheart, our parents and our children, but also with our
offensive neighbors, our difficult associates, the stupid, hateful, slothful, disobedient,
wayward, rebellious, unlovely, and our persecutors. Love
suffers long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy;
is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. Love is not conceited, arrogant, or inflated with
pride; it is not rude, and does not act unbecomingly.
Love does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not
self-seeking; it is not touchy or complaining or resentful; it takes no account of the
evil done to it pays no attention to a suffered wrong. It does not rejoice at injustice and
unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail.
Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to
believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances and it
sweetly endures everything. Love never fails
never fades out, becomes obsolete, never is destroyed by anything, and never comes
to an end. THIS IS THE POWER AND THE GLORY OF
DO VIOLENCE TO NO MAN
And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man... (Lk. 3:14). Love will affect every attitude and action toward men on both the personal and corporate level. I have no hesitation in telling you that I have been a conscientious objector to war all my life because from a small child I could never believe that the spirit of warfare with its hatred, killing, and violence is compatible with the love of God or the spirit of sonship.
Oh, yes, we have our excuses and a thousand reasons are given to go forth and kill and maim and destroy by warfare. The government requires me to do it, we say. Thats reminiscent of that other time-honored cop-out, The devil made me do it! I must defend my country and our liberties, we explain, we have an obligation to our families, our communities, and our nation to defend ourselves. So we wield the sword, fire machine guns, and bomb villages and cities into oblivion, blasting thousands, yea, millions of innocent men, women and children out of this world, and call on God to bless! What strange beings we Christians are who profess to follow in the footsteps of Him who said, For the Son of man is not come to destroy mens lives, but to save them (Lk. 9:56). I tell you today that no son of God is sent into this world to destroy mens lives, but every son of God is sent into the world of save them. No son of God, no brother of Jesus, is sent into this world to destroy even one life, but to become a saviour for all men.
War is not a matter of one soldier against one soldier. It is now a war of guns and bombs and germs and chemicals and land-mines against soldiers and mothers and children and babes. Any way to intimidate the foe! Scare and blast loved ones out of the fox holes into hell or heaven that is the way to win. We little realize the awful depths into which the spirit of warfare carries us. As one wrote of a certain war: I had to aim carefully at the straw roof and only succeeded at the third shot. The wretches who were inside, seeing their roof burning, jumped out and ran off like mad...surrounded by a circle of fire about five thousand people came to a sticky end. It was like hell, the smoke rose to incredible heights, and the flames reddened the setting sun.
is still ruling our world and it is not spiritual; it is carnal, political, and devilish. As ambassadors of the
Well has Philip Mauro written, War is an instrument of the god of this world. War stems from greed and political intrigue. Preparing the soldier for war is a godless procedure. Hate is drilled into him. He is taught every trick there is to kill. This must be so for war is a dirty business. War differs from ordinary murders only in that it is on an enormous scale. Every invention and contrivance that men can devise, every deception and stratagem to which they can resort, every cruelty and atrocity which they can perpetuate, are elements of warfare. Hence it is not merely a questionable proceeding not merely a thing which it is perhaps better to avoid war is the thing of all things that is farthest removed from the spirit and work of Christ. It is the work of the devil to destroy. War is the great all-inclusive, sum total of everything that is devilish. When General Sherman tersely said, War is hell, he uttered a truth. Heaven is peace. Hell is war. Let us look the ugly fact squarely in the face, that the man who enlists (or is drafted) commits himself in advance to the perpetration of every unnamable atrocity that war is held to justify. He repudiates his individual responsibility to God and man, and pledges himself blindly, by an oath and under penalty of death, to obey the commands of his officers, whatever they may be and to whatever work they may send him. If we then are to go forth and kill our fellowmen, whose lives shall we take? Shall we slay the unsaved, to whom we owe the gospel of Christ? If not those, then are we to slay our fellow saints to whom we owe our love and service? War and the gospel are as far apart as the east is from the west, as far as hell is from heaven... end quote.
fighting and killing on carnal battlefields is right for the sons of God, then the
Priesthood after the Order of Melchizedek, the priesthood of grace, mercy, love and
salvation is wrong; if the gospel of love, even for our enemies, is right, then war is
wrong. Jesus showed us clearly that the life
of sonship is completely independent of every earthly tradition, custom, and requirement. The life of sonship belongs to the realm of the
principles of the
Except for those religious Pharisees, Jesus never spoke one cross word to the unconverted masses, Israelite, Roman, or otherwise. He was very tender and kind in all His dealings with men. His approach to them was very gentle, delicate, and considerate. Surely, then, we are safer in His hands than anywhere else! The things He has in store for every one of us are far greater than we could plan for ourselves. He will do us only good, and never evil. Does God expect His other sons to be different than His Firstborn? Jesus has taught us, But love your enemies, and do good...and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be THE SONS OF THE HIGHEST; for HE IS KIND UNTO THE UNTHANKFUL AND TO THE EVIL, BE YE THEREFORE MERCIFUL, AS YOUR FATHER also is merciful. In this instance Jesus plainly says that if we desire to be the SONS OF THE HIGHEST, we must be merciful as He is merciful. THE HIGHEST IS MERCIFUL TO ALL.
The question follows: Why should the Highest be merciful to the evil and the unthankful? The answer is clear that the evil one and the unthankful one may come to know the mercy and goodness of God! They would never know that mercy in any other way. If Jesus teaches us we are to be kind to those who mis-use us, reproach us, attack us, curse us, and make themselves our enemies, then what kind of a God and Father would He be, whose words Jesus taught us, who would HATE HIS ENEMIES and cast them into merciless eternal hell to burn forever? If such a thing were to be, then God would require us to be better than Himself! Jesus teaches us that we are to be merciful and kind, to bless and do good to all who are enemies. Do we then have a Father whose nature is entirely opposite to ours? Impossible! The sons of God are sent, as was the Son, to reveal the nature of our Father to all.
If we see a God that loves only those that love Him, or who defends Himself, and attacks His enemies, banishing them to eternal damnation, torturing endlessly those that curse Him, meting out eternal vengeance upon those that hate Him, and shutting up all mercy from those who persecute Him, then we have a God who establishes His Kingdom in the same spirit, and along the same lines, and by the same methods as the kingdoms of this world. But we are commanded to love our enemies, bless them that curse us, do good to those that hate us, and pray for them that despitefully use us, and persecute us THAT WE MAY BE THE SONS OF OUR FATHER WHICH IS IN HEAVEN: for He makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust...BE YE THEREFORE PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER WHICH IS IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT (Mat. 5:38-48).
of God are instructed to love their enemies and not to resist evil (Mat. 5:39). In so doing they proclaim the nature and principles
is raising up in the earth a
that blessed day when the mountain of the house of the Lord is established in the tops of the mountains it shall come to pass
that many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the
Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk
in His paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from
Jerusalem. And He shall judge among the
nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither
shall they learn war any more (Isa. 2:1-4). The
spirit of that blessed day must first be perfected in those who are destined to rule with
the Lamb from
men come to
I am reminded of the story of a missionary who was trying to explain Christian living to the chief of a primitive and warlike tribe. The chief was very old, and he listened patiently. I do not understand, the old man said at last. You tell me that I must not take my neighbors wife or his ivory or his oxen. Thats right, said the missionary. And I must not dance the war dance and then ambush my enemy on the trail and kill him. Absolutely right, replied the missionary. But I cannot do any of these things anymore, the old chief said regretfully. I am too old. To be old and to be Christian they are the same thing! We may be amused at the old chiefs logic, but the solution is plain. He did not do those things because he could not we do not do them because we will not!
is time to evaluate our Kingdom walk. The
ascended Christ stands at the doorway and bids us set our eyes toward the world above and
listen for His voice. We came from that higher
world, we are sent as ambassadors of that higher world; let us seek first the
first learned this beautiful truth from a good and holy man, my natural father. It was his earnest conviction that Jesus taught
that a child of God and citizen of the
Under the law we have a right to harm someone who has harmed us. It is fair and just to retaliate when someone attacks us. The walking out of these Old Covenant principles range from sibling pinches to international war. If someone takes advantage of me, I have the right to take advantage of them. If someone files a lawsuit against me, I have the right to file a counter suit. If someone swindles me in an agreement, I have the right to swindle him back. In every case it is an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. If a nation launches missiles against us, we have a right to send missles back. You have heard that all of this has been said, Jesus declared, BUT I SAY UNTO YOU! Ah, now we are on Kingdom territory! And what is the higher law of the Kingdom that Jesus brought? Resist not evil...dont retaliate...dont sue anyone...if they take your car let them have your truck also...if they force you into a bad situation, fulfill what they require and more!
My father lived by these principles. On more than one occasion he was attacked by men who had sworn to kill him because of the gospel. They came at him with bricks and two-by-fours and brute physical strength, and my father was a small man. He fearlessly stood his ground and spoke only the words, I love you! Their arms stopped in mid air and they dropped their weapons. On one occasion the scene was less dramatic, but the Holy Ghost was on my mother. As she spoke in tongues and turned the car around, my father was able to jump in and make his escape. He would never resist evil, never retaliate, never manifest any fear, antagonism, anger or animosity. And he was never injured! God was powerfully with him at all times.
the 1940s my father joined himself to one of the Pentecostal denominations. When he was being examined for ordination to the
ministry in this denomination he told the brethren, There is something I must let
you know. I am a conscientious objector. I do not believe a Christian has any right in the
spirit of Jesus to resist any evil or go to war to fight against any enemy of our country. He explained in detail his views on this matter. The brethren said to him, But, brother Eby,
what if a thief or rapist entered your house at night with the intent to rob you, or to molest your wife and children, or even to
kill you what would you what would you do? He answered, I would call on God and God
would congeal him in the doorway and he would
be unable to do us any harm. The weapons of
our warfare are not carnal, they are mighty through God. But, the brethren pressed, what
if everyone believed as you do? What if no one
would join the armed forces to defend our country? What
if our enemies attacked us what would we do?
My father responded, My dear brethren, if everyone in this country
believed as I do, there would be so much of the power of God in this nation that our
enemies would not be able to attack us! Well,
brother Eby, the brethren said, we dont agree, but we do admire your
faith. They ordained him. My father was a small man, only five feet, one and
a half inches tall, but he was a man of courage, fearlessness, conviction, and a man of
faith and power with God. He lived, breathed,
and walked out what he perceived as true in God.
And it worked! God was
with him. He was an example of the power of the grace and love of God to overcome all evil
with good. That, precious friend of mine, is
the power and glory of the
ENTERING THE KINGDOM
an earlier article of this series I wrote concerning the difference between seeing and entering the
we find Jesus laying down the preliminary requirement for an understanding of the Kingdom,
as well as entrance into the Kingdom. When men come into the world, they are born
outside of the
a man be born again, he cannot see the
to walk in the light of HIS countenance. Seeing the INVISIBLE will make it easy to
forsake this world and do the will of God! The heavens are shut up from the natural man.
cannot see eternal things. He hears only the lower sounds of earth. But you see
beyond all this into the very heart of God, into the depths of His great plans and
purposes, and the whys and wherefores of all things since the
creation of the world and unto the consummation of all ages. You see the
enter into the Kingdom is, as we should readily understand, more than to
see it. Moses
stood on the heights of
this point the
plainly taught His disciples and the scribes and Pharisees that He had brought the
In my years of ministry I have had occasion to reflect upon this saying of our Lord. Some people come to the hard work of pressing into the Kingdom only under painful duress. Once the price of entrance becomes clear to them, they drop the plow and turn back to the beggarly elements of religion, joining themselves again to the programs and activities of a church system in a lesser realm. They are not yet ready for the Kingdom. They refuse to enter into the Kingdom. In contrast are those who find themselves unable to leave the Kingdom walk. They are drawn irresistibly to the transforming and creative process going on within them, and thoroughly understand that there is nothing in the church systems of man for them anymore. Nothing could entice them not blessings, nor programs, nor fellowship, nor activities, nor personalities, nor needs, nor preachers to turn from their quest of the Kingdom. THEY HAVE REACHED THE POINT OF NO RETURN. No looking back! The hook is in their jaw. They can do nothing else, so help them God.
we are the elect of God in this hour, there is a call within us, and deep calleth unto
tell you, my beloved, there is something within me, an inner compulsion, and I know that I
have set my face as a flint and cannot turn to the right hand or the left from my journey
into Gods fullness. I cant go back to the world the world has
nothing to offer me; it is all vanity and vexation of spirit. I cant
go back to religion religion holds
nothing for me anymore; it is an abomination. I cant even go back to Pentecost, back
when the pressures and processings come, when the dealings of God
are deep and heavy upon us, when the going is especially painful or difficult and saints
complain of its demanding nature, I ask, Could you stop this inward work if you
wanted to? Could
you find an exit and escape the demands of His purposes in your life? The
answer comes back, No I have no choice
but to fellow on to know the Lord. For these precious souls the glory and honor
One more and more comes to know what it means to walk in the Kingdom as he follows on into deeper and deeper measures of Gods dealings and further separations unto His purposes. As we become ONE WITH GOD the world does not understand what has happened; but they know that a separation has taken place between us and them that is more than bodily separation. Although we are living and moving among them, and they see us at our earthly tasks and daily living, they realize that we have mounted up beyond them and their understanding. In this connection a brother in Christ some time ago sent us these meaningful words: Yes, this is an holy calling and it involves much separation, often from our friends, religious realms, and everything and everybody that would hinder the upward climb into the hill of the Lord, that we might stand in His holy place. The flesh will cringe at the aloneness of the walk. The mind will question as to why it must be so. But the spirit within will continue to draw us onward without the camp, bearing His reproach, while we are loosed from so many hindrances and infirmities. IT IS A DAY OF REVELATION and little did we know what things were hindering our spiritual progress until suddenly we found that God was stripping something from us, and though we wept at the time, and would have retained it if we could, nevertheless being yielded to the will of God, we relinquished our grasp, and found to our amazement that we received a new measure of freedom. And how many things we hold so dear, but they are actually a weight upon us, rather than a help.
Many times it is most grievous and perplexing to those who do not know the Lord, as well as to those Christians bound in the religious systems, who cannot understand the workings and separating processes of the Spirit of God, to have one who is near and dear to them in the flesh, separated from them in the Spirit. Though the body with its personality is still in the home, office, or business, it is as though the loved one were not there. In such cases, how often do they who are watching the lives of those who are entering hard into the Kingdom realm of God, entreat them that they will return; that they will again be unto them as they once were. When an apprehended one has entered into this experience, he has counted all things but loss, and suffered the loss of all things, that he might WIN CHRIST AND HIS KINGDOM. Truly, HIS DRAWING leaves us no choice but to FOLLOW ON that we might KNOW HIM in all His glorious and eternal reality! He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me (Mat. 10:37-38)
we follow on to enter into the righteousness, power and glory of the
mentioned earlier that the purpose of the new birth is to give us the life of God which is
the life of the
has been my experience that God not only prunes away the sins of the flesh and the
emotions and tendencies of the soul, but a great deal of religiousness religious
activities and those involved in them as well. There was a time years ago when we made the
circuit, speaking for the Full Gospel Business Mens Fellowship and various
organizations and movements within the Pentecostal and Charismatic realms. Our desire was
pure to share the
present truth of sonship and the Kingdom of God to inspire and
bless and challenge any and all possible to the deeper life of the Christ within. Here and
there we found an elect few who had ears to hear, but for the most part it became evident
that we were spinning our wheels. Then, one day it dawned on me! Our word
was not producing fruit in those places. Oh, they were delighted to have brother Eby
come by and share his testimony, even minister a revelatory word, and prophesy over some
people, with the laying on of hands, momentarily satiating the intense craving in a few
hearts for a richer diet of spiritual fare. But after I left, nothing changed! There was
no fruit. There
was no heightened vision, no going on in God, no raising up of the
Those called to this high calling, who shall rule and reign with Christ in His Kingdom in this great Day of the Lord, are being separated from all that binds them to a lower order, that they may enter into the fullness of His life. Many people find it a lot easier to be one with the babylonish religious systems, where the crowds are, than to become separated to go out beyond, leading the way for others to follow. How I rejoice that God is now calling a people sons of the Kingdom separated ones to a realm beyond the norm or religious activity, beyond the programs and promotions, beyond the sensationalism and hand-clapping, beyond the revivals and conventions and seminars, into the new and seemingly strange paths of HIS LEADING. The prunings are not easy, friends and loved ones and brethren do not readily understand, especially the preachers and organizations set upon holding you within their pews and coffers. I do not doubt for one moment that many of these programs are being used of God on some level, in spite of the worldly methods and fleshly techniques, to touch many lives with salvation, healings, and blessings. We are thankful to our heavenly Father for His blessing on every plane where He chooses to work, but when the call comes to leave behind the outer court of salvation and the holy place of the baptism in the Spirit in order to ENTER INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD, those called to be kings and priests unto God come aside to prepare for the glory soon to be revealed, to make ready for the next great move of God in the earth!
The message is clear there are things that others can do, but which you cannot do, when you begin to enter into the Kingdom. Religion today has become big business. It is one of the biggest and most lucrative businesses in the whole world. More than one preacher, supposing that gain is godliness, has become a millionaire over the past few decades, not because he was anointed by God, but because he was a TERRIFIC PROMOTER. Through clever speech and cunning craftiness whereby they lie in wait to deceive they have beguiled innocent people, pretending that they were the great power of God. By craftiness they obtain the names of tens of thousands of the Lords precious people to whom they monthly send their high-pressure pleas for financial help to further grandiose programs which are not the plan of God at all, but merely the product of an imaginative, scheming, grasping and greedy mind. Untold millions of dollars have been extracted from innocent, humble saints to build huge cathedrals, church buildings, office complexes, radio and television networks, outreaches, and missionary programs that are more of a curse than a blessing. Some time ago David Wilkerson was asked, What do you think about American religious broadcasting, especially Christian television? His reply: They should shut it down. Turn off all the cameras. Release all these men from all the pressures we have put them under. They should be stripped from their heroic robes, all of their glamour, and be taken outside from all the lights. Then they should go back to the mountain and be broken before God. Let God bring them back, as He chooses, in a purified form. Its all become flesh, absolute flesh... And though some will be offended by my words, I do believe that those who truly hunger and thirst to enter the Kingdom will hear, believe, and obey when I say that those who feed upon those polluted tables are no better than the preachers that spread the tables! If you want to hear the voice of the King of kings in this hour, turn off the so-called Christian television, and fall upon your knees in holy brokenness before God until you receive a word directly out of the heavens.
We have passed through a time of great darkness. But thank God, the first rays of light of a new day are painting the eastern sky! Thank God, a few of His chosen ones have arisen to behold the glories of the dawn and to drink in the intoxicating freshness of the morn. But the popular churches are still lost in dreams. They have not awakened. They know not of the dawn. And the Word describes them and their shepherds in very uncomplimentary terms. The heads of the churches are called the drunkards of Ephraim (Isa. 28:1-4). Then in Isaiah 29:9-11 we are told, they are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink. For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your heads...hath He covered. And all vision hath become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed. And when these drunken shepherds spread tables for their flocks, instead of those tables being loaded with good wholesome spiritual food, the prophet says, ALL tables are full of vomit and filthiness, so that there is NO PLACE CLEAN (Isa. 28:8).
we who are of the Day, who are not lovers of the drunkenness of religious teachings and
promotions, nor sleepers of the night, have a higher heritage. We
are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep as do others (I
Thes. 5:5-6). We
who have received the love of the truth are heirs to a higher calling. We have
privileges, and we have duties to perform. We must be about our Fathers business. It is
time to forsake the shame and error, and time to look up, time to arise and shine. The day
is at hand. The
night is far spent. We
must go forth and lead the way for all who will follow. Awake,
awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy
city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean
(Isa. 52:1). Because
the church today has not received of Gods enlightenment, we find Christians in the
pathetic state of darkness. Because Christians today, whether baptized in
Gods Spirit, or not, have stopped far short of Gods fullness, and are still
spiritual babes, they, with few exceptions, do not discern the things that pertain to the
you know that one reason Gods children do not hunger and thirst after righteousness
and follow on to apprehend the
is a passage in Daniel 7:18 that says, But the saints of the Most High shall take
the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever. Here it
says that we shall take the Kingdom, and sometimes we think this means that
we are to take the Kingdom by exercising the authority; but before we can do that, the
Kingdom must first be given to us, we must be able to enter into it, strong enough to
possess it, and worthy to inherit it. If we try to take it before the authority is
given to us, we are usurpers, not inheritors, and are guilty of spiritual treason. If I tell
you that I intend to give you my car, but you come and take it before I give it to you,
you are a thief. If
you worked for a large business concern and the president of the company mentioned that he
had intentions of making you vice-president; if you took over the vice-presidency before
he actually gave it to you, you would be a usurper and probably
would be fired! Although
God has promised us the Kingdom, and is leading us into it step by step, we still do not
have all the authority, power, or glory of the Kingdom. Sometimes
we try to exercise authority that we dont have and it doesnt work. Some may
be offended at me for saying this, but if you are honest, you will have to admit that it
is so. When
we really have the authority, when it has been given to us, and we have laid hold upon it,
it will work, not just sometimes, but all the time. Either we have it or we dont, and if we
have it it will never fail. May God in His great mercy forgive us if we
are trying to usurp something we havent yet possessed. I dont
want to be a usurper I want to be an
deepest desire is to be counted worthy of the
OBSTACLES TO ENTERING THE KINGDOM
new movement can always benefit from having a few rich and famous converts. So it
must have been exciting when the rich young ruler approached Jesus to talk about his
possible involvement in the Kingdom. No doubt Judas already had his pledge
envelopes out, and I can just hear Simon Peter exclaiming, Wow, this guy is future
board-member material! At the beginning of His ministry Jesus had
said, Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth
corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in
heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through
and steal (Mat. 6:19-20). On another occasion He said, How hardly
shall they that have riches enter into the
Dont misunderstand Jesus was not opposed to money. His mind of omniscient wisdom understood the eternal truth that a person could hold on to wealth all the days of his life, but the only true and eternal treasures, which are in the Kingdom of Heaven, could only be obtained by doing the will of the Father in heaven. The will of the Father is Kingdom business, and it yields Kingdom dividends in the realm of the spirit. So be careful, Jesus warned. Dont get involved in the wrong treasure hunt. He knew that people get obsessed with earthly things. After a while little else matters to them, or, as Jesus put it, Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. It is true that Jesus says merely that it is hard for those who have riches to enter the Kingdom hard, but not impossible! Wealth tends to make a man self-sufficient and independent of God and arrogant and presumptuous towards others in that he learns that money will purchase him any special privilege he wants. He becomes trapped in a mesh of values where everything has a cash-value attached to it. No man can serve two masters, Jesus said, you cannot serve God and mammon (money).
is so very difficult for a rich man to enter the Kingdom because the
recently I came across this article. Hear what it says. In 1928, a group of
the worlds most successful financiers met at the Edgewater Beach Hotel in
Our Lords only concern for the rich young ruler was that this ruler seek for those things that were truly valuable, the priceless treasures of the mind of Christ, the eternal wealth of the will of the Father, and the imperishable riches of the nature and power of God. Still this disciple-candidate was unable to act on what he heard. The Bible says he was sorrowful. Think about that! The dictionary defines sorrowful as, full of sorrow, disappointment, regret, grief. Why was the young man sorrowful? Ah, the record states, For he had great possessions. By the spirit of wisdom and understanding from God we can see how undiscerning and unwise he was!
among the Lords people I have heard it said that if we really focus our energies on
the Kingdom, we will become rich. Or
another way of saying it is that prosperity is a sign of Gods blessing. The more
affluent a brother or sister in Christ is, the more they must be seeking the Kingdom or
applying the principles of the Kingdom. The reasoning goes like this: God has
promised that He will bless His children if they are faithful to Him and have faith. Since
kings live in extravagant palaces, sons of God have the right to live luxuriously to
demonstrate that they are indeed the Kings Kids members of Gods
beloved brethren, does this not contradict the words of our Elder Brother and Forerunner that a
rich man can hardly enter into the
would to God that all who name the name of Christ would learn what it means when Jesus
says, Seek ye first the
that inward man is the power of all things. The law of the Kingdom is that he who makes
our choices in the outer world should serve to extend, express and demonstrate the reality
of what we are in the inner world. When we choose a job or any activity, we dont
choose on the basis of its value in the outer world, we choose that which will serve as an
expression of the inner man. Thats where peace is. Thats
where joy is. Thats
where righteousness is. Thats
where the power of God resides. Thats where the only fulfillment is. Because
that is where the Kingdom is, thats where life is, thats where reality is,
thats where the true riches are, thats where heaven is! So many
people work on their jobs just to make money, to pay bills and put food on the table. They dont
really like the job, and are miserable. That is
what the outer world calls making a living. But
making a living is more than making money, for all the men in that outer
world are dying, and what they are
actually doing is MAKING A DEATH! Their
emphasis is on laying up store for old age, making out the will, and seeing that the
funeral is paid for. That is not life! The Lord
of the Kingdom has taught us the truth of the Kingdom in this sublime word of wisdom:
A mans life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth
(Lk. 12:15). To
make a living means, first and foremost, to LIVE! Its making what you are live! It denotes quality of life, and the only life
of quality is the inward man Christ. You will
know true joy, peace and power when your inward man lives through your outward man, your
inner world is expressed and revealed through your outer world. Matters
not what you do outwardly, where you live, what your vocation is, what your
responsibilities are when your inward
life is dominant all outer things are affected, transformed, swallowed up. As sons
of God we are not victims of either money, things, or circumstances. These are
not able to take away our peace. They are unable to rob us of our joy. They
cannot take our life. The
Christ within is our reality, our stability, our substance, our all. And that
is what we are seeking. We
are seeking incorruptible and immortal realities and powers. We are
While I have written of the perilous danger to those who pursue the wealth of this world, there is an abomination more dreadful than this right within the ministry of that which professes to be the Church. There is no shortage of men and women seeking gold and glory in the name of the Lord. The land is overflowing with them, those seeking their own gain and each staking his own claim. Within the past decade or so, two of the most famous international television pulpiteers have been exposed and their vast financial holdings have been publicized. They had millions of dollars invested in their personal homes and property while they begged and pled for money from the widows and the poor. They lived sumptuously while multitudes of those who supported their grandiose programs were living as paupers. And things have not changed one whit. Where are those who are true ministers of God and blessers of creation rather than those who gather money? Where are those who are building Gods Kingdom rather than their own? Where are those who truly feed the sheep? Where are those who are not lifted up with pride? Where are those who are not puffed up with their own importance? Where are those who do not exalt themselves? Where is the preacher who doesnt seek to ingratiate himself to the one with the expensive clothes and the luxury automobile?
is the weeping before the altar? Where are those who refrain from using the
worlds methods to conduct Gods business? Where are those who do not charge for the
gospel, even if it is only a price on their tapes or books? Where are
those who do not have a ministry for sale? Where are those who have not taken unto
themselves the gold and the glory? Where are those who are not displaying flesh in
their man-made schemes and promotions? Where are those of a broken and contrite
are those with the meekness and purity of the Lamb? Where are those who have not brought the
spirit of the world into their midst? Where are those who do not put their picture
on every page of their magazine and their name on everything they do? Where is
the beauty and glory of the message of the
one can deny that religion today is BIG BUSINESS. Some of the best known born again
only person who can enter the Kingdom realm of God is the one who elects to come on Gods
terms and in Gods way. The word of God reveals hindrances to
entrance into the Kingdom. Another obstacle to entering into the Kingdom
is the noxious weed of fleshly religion. When Jesus spoke to the self-righteous
Pharisees and the blind, mis-guided chief priests and elders of the Jews, He delivered to
them this stinging rebuke. Verily I say unto you, that the
publicans and the harlots go into the
The damning sin of the Pharisees was that they made godliness a law rather than a life. Moses said! they thundered from their station high upon the craggy pinnacle of Sinai, and proceeded to lay upon the people the heavy burden of 613 commandments that must be meticulously kept according to the elaborate and extrapolated interpretations of the rabbis. I must point out that self-righteous religion is as old as the garden of Eden. In the mists of that heaven blest paradise, when the first woman and man stretched forth their inquisitive hands and furtively took of the forbidden fruit of the knowledge of good and evil, the eyes of them both were mysteriously opened to discover their own nakedness. To be naked means to have ones flesh exposed. Only the knowledge of good and evil could have caused them to realize that their flesh was exposed, and that knowledge never came to them as long as they walked in life. It was, in fact, a forbidden knowledge. There were only two trees the tree of life and the tree of law theknowledge of good and evil. Gods purpose for man is that he live in life, not after law. The law came by Moses, but grace and truth (life) came by Jesus Christ.
By means of the law the eyes of them both were opened, but, alas! to what a sight! When they departed from walking in life it was only to discover their own nakedness. They opened their eyes upon their own condition, which was wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked (Rev. 3:17). By the law is the knowledge of sin, the scripture teaches us. Suddenly they knew that they were naked they knew that their flesh, their fleshly nature, was now revealed, bare and exposed sad fruit of the tree of knowledge. No sooner does a man discover his nakedness than this knowledge gives rise to the impulse to make an effort to COVER the nakedness. Thus, in the case of Adam and Eve, the discovery of their nakedness was immediately followed by an effort of their own to cover it they sewed fig-leaves together and made themselves aprons (Gen. 3:7).
is the first record we have of mans attempt to remedy, by his own device, his
condition, but this was not the single act of Adam in the Garden, it is truly the act of
each of us, yes, OUR VERY OWN! The Spirit must make it very real to your heart, dear
reader, that Adams effort to cover his nakedness was not a mere physical act, not
even a moral act, it was a RELIGIOUS ACT. Our spiritual understanding of what
transpired in that
And this, let every man know, is just the difference between the walk in the Spirit of God and human religiousness. When you put on the Lord Jesus Christ and walk in the Spirit you are wonderfully clothed thereby as you eat of the tree of His Life. There was no sense of nakedness so long as they lived by the tree of life. And though it is a great and deep mystery, what happened to Adam happens to us. What he was we have been. His experience is our experience. Ah, child of God, may the spirit of wisdom and revelation from God give enlightenment to your mind that you may comprehend of a truth that what happened to Adam in the Garden IS EVEN NOW HAPPENING TO EACH OF US. Every man from Adam to this day has been naked his fleshly nature has been exposed and, at some time, in some manner, has been busily engaged in weaving together his very own fig-leaf apron to try and cover his nakedness. No one wants to appear as what he is, even though he is a thief, an adulterer, a murderer, a liar, or a religious hypocrite. In an effort to appear other than he is he sews together very wide leaves of the fig tree, to gloss over his true condition; that is, he tries every device he can, including multiplied religious works, rules, regulations, dress codes, good deeds, and a thousand others, to gloss over his true condition. Much fleshliness is still exposed, but the more gross manifestations are partially and temporarily concealed by his apron of fig-leaf works. But all the garments a man may devise to hide his nakedness become mere spiders webs when the blazing light of Gods presence and glory shines upon them. Fig-leaf righteousness is so shallow, limited to outward observances, religious exercises, ceremonies, rituals, appearances, works, regulations, do this, dont do that, go here, dont go there, eat this, dont eat that, drink this, dont drink that, which make a show of righteousness in the flesh but leave the nature unchanged, the mind untransformed, and the will of the Father undone.
The miracle of what God has done through Jesus Christ ravishes my heart. I am enthralled beyond measure that by faith He has clothed me with the robe of Christs righteousness. The first thing God does is to strip away all the artificial, man-made coverings, and presents His own glorious covering, the slain Lamb. For Adam also and for his wife the Lord God made long coats (tunics) of skins, and clothed them (Gen. 3:21, Amplified). We would be hard pressed to understand the deep mystery of these skins with which the Lord clothed the sorrowing pair were it not that the scripture informs us that at that precise point in history GOD SLEW A LAMB FOR OUR COVERING. Christ, the Lamb of God, was foreordained before the foundation (disruption) of the world (I Pet. 1:20), and He is the Lamb slain from the foundation (disruption) of the world (Rev. 13:8). And that Lamb is the atonement (Hebrew: covering) of God for us, typified by all the Old Testament atonement sacrifices, and He is our only robe of righteousness. Interesting that the Lamb was slain not merely for the sinning man and woman, and not only for the naked man and woman, but for the man and woman CLOTHED IN FIG LEAVES! The skins of covering from the Lamb were given to replace the fig leaves of mans self-effort, and not only was the man himself brought to the cross, but all his self-made religion of works as well! Ah, yes, the cross shall deal not only with sin and nakedness, it shall deal as well with our fig-leaves!
How vain have been our strivings about externals and our insistence upon carnal technicalities that we in ignorance deemed so very important! How often the spirit within me has been grieved as I have listened to brethren wasting their time contending over baptisms, communion, foot washing, meats and drinks, holy days, dress codes, long hair, short hair, women preachers, prayer veils, and petty doctrines of every kind, and when they were through with their pietistic wrangling, they had accomplished nothing but to prove that they knew everything about the dead letter of the Word and absolutely nothing about the mind of Christ or the life-giving Spirit! Men do not need any external ordinances, ceremonies, rituals or regulations. They need CHRIST AS LIFE! It was not the gospel, but the Old Covenant which stood in meats and drinks, and divers washings (baptisms), and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation (change). But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands (not anything you can produce externally)... (Heb. 9:10-11).
Fig leaves! Fig leaves! Fig leaves! Cursed covering of mans own devising! And any man with eyes to see can see the flesh shining brazenly through it in spite of all the intricate design and superficial appearance of life. Oh! how men try to conceal the corrupt flesh underneath, and indeed they may partially hide it from men, but the fig-leaf apron can never screen a man from the eye of God. But, blessed be the name of the Lord, God has reserved to Himself a people who is completely different, a people who is wholly HIS, a people who dwells in the light which Christ Himself is, elect according to the foreknowledge of God, sanctified by His Spirit, obedient to their heavenly Father, and clothed in the GARMENTS OF LIFE, even the righteousness of Gods Lamb by the Spirit of resurrection from the dead. There is no doubt in my mind that this is the people that shall be granted an ABUNDANT ENTRANCE into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!
POSSESSING THE KINGDOM
of Christians are settled upon their lees they are
satisfied with knowing the joy of sins forgiven and hope to make heaven their home at
is no desire in their hearts to attain to anything of value in the
shows us how Gods people under the Old Covenant, ransomed by grace, and set upon a
course of divine privilege and opportunity, were called to win the prize of their calling,
and missed it. They
were delivered out of the hand of their enemies by the blood of the Lamb. They were
visibly under Gods protecting wing, and led out of
God told the children of
covenant of the old
O that the wonderful spirit of revelation would enlighten us to the grandeur of these promises of God! The wisdom and understanding of the Spirit is being given to us. We are growing up to know the hope of our calling, and to see the glories that are reserved for us in the realm of Spirit. Only as we are enlightened by the spirit of revelation can we possibly comprehend the marvelous truth of our inheritance in Christ. When we fully understand that Christ is our inheritance, the things of earth will indeed grow dim. The world and all things of it will lose its attraction, and we will run with patience the race that is set before us. Our glorious, risen Christ has already set down the footprints, the steps, into the glory that is reserved for us. He has pre-destined our walk unto His fullness. He has set aside an inheritance for us that makes the things of this world look like the paltry dust and ashes that it is. Compared to the splendor of the incorruptible and immortal Christ of glory, all else is corruption. He has reserved Himself for us! He has set aside the Holiest of all, the place of His greater presence, for the holy remnant who are now growing up into Him. What an inheritance! The steps to that glory are there. Walk in the Spirit and the way will be made clear end quote.
precious saint of God, how vast and rich the land is! The land is unsearchably great, unlimitedly
dimensions of the land are the length, the breadth, the height, and the depth of the
have we not, then, fully possessed our land? The thing that kept
Ah, how often that wily devil of unbelief speaks the very same things within us! He says, Dont talk about overcoming every enemy. Dont talk about walking in the nature of God. Dont talk about coming to perfection nobody can be perfect in this world. Dont talk about conquering death everybody dies until the rapture. Dont talk about being manifested sons of God it is enough to join a good church, pay our tithes and be faithful Christians. Dont talk about becoming exactly like Christ nobody can measure up to Him. Dont talk about putting on the mind of Christ. Dont talk about ruling and reigning with Christ it might go to your head. Dont talk about being kings and priests after the Order of Melchizedek that is too high for you. All of these things are good and wonderful. But it is absolutely impossible for you to possess them.
I do not doubt that even while some have been reading this message that devil of unbelief has whispered such things in your ear! You cannot possess the land, you cannot attain to the high calling of sonship, you will never stand among the manifested sons of God because you are weak, you are now old and feeble; you cant preach or teach the Word; you are beset by physical ailments and disease, silly of you to think of overcoming sin and death; you have already failed so many times to please your heavenly Father; God never answers your prayers, anyhow; you have no church or fellowship, no one to encourage and strengthen you; you have too many problems and hang-ups; you are young and inexperienced, others have walked in this truth for years; your own home is out of order, you are bedeviled by a carnal, opposing spouse and unruly, rebellious children; dont ever think you can enter the good land of the Kingdom it is far beyond your ability. You can never make it! The little devil of unbelief lurking within the carnal mind in each of us is just waiting for the opportunity to inject his deadly venom and deliver to us the evil report You are not able to go up and possess your inheritance! Never believe him!
inhabitants are giants, he will tell you. and the cities have walls that
chariots run upon. You
will be defeated and you know it. You will go by way of the grave at last. You will
miss the unveiling of the Kingdom glory in the earth, you will not be a member of Gods
overcoming, conquering army. All this is an evil heart of unbelief.
is a heart occupied by the evil one; so it is called an evil heart. The heart
is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked, saith the Lord! We must
ask the Lord to deliver us from the evil heart. We must take our stand with Joshua and Caleb
and proclaim by the faith of the Son of God within us that WE ARE ABLE TO GO UP AND TAKE
THE LAND! We
must have faith in the power of His resurrection within ourselves. The
mighty power of God within us is able to do exceeding, abundantly above all that we ask or
think, above all that we dream or imagine. God will do the work as we follow on in
and obedience, even as He did for
The generation in the wilderness consented to the spying out of the land no doubt they really enjoyed the grapes and the figs and the pomegranates the spies brought back but they refused to enter in and possess the land. It is all right, this same unbelieving generation tells us today, to be baptized in the Spirit, speak in tongues, heal the sick, prophesy, be slain in the Spirit and do some miracles these things are all right. They relish the firstfruits of the Spirit that the spies bring back, the little sample of the richness of the land, but they do not want to hear about Christ appearing in glory in the saints, or the manifestation of the sons of God. And as for people conquering death and by-passing the grave that is definitely not for Gods people today. True, God has it for us, it is part of our inheritance, but we dare not try to lay hold upon it today. That will take place, automatically, at the rapture, or in the first resurrection at the last day not now. We cannot possess the land the walls are too high, the giants too tall, and the people too strong. The armies of the enemies have iron chariots. How utterly ridiculous to suppose that we can overcome such obstacles!
Oh yes, you can be filled with the Spirit, teach a
Sunday School class, move in the gifts, get into prosperity but you cannot be
conformed to the image of the Son, defeat Satan, conquer sin and death, and
ascend the throne of God to rule and reign with Christ over the nations and all things. You can
sneak in and seize a cluster or two of grapes from the
should be obvious to any thinking person that this is the mind-set of just about all
Christians today and the teaching of all the preachers and churches. Of
course, many churches dont even want their people to taste the firstfruits! The whole
issue revolves around this question: Are we going to settle for the earnest of
our inheritance, the down payment of the Spirit, or, are we going to arise
from the dust and rocks of this great and terrible wilderness and follow our Joshua across
the Jordan to lay hold upon, and enter into, and possess fully, ALL THE GLORIOUS
INHERITANCE OF THE LAND GOD HAS GIVEN US?
we can praise God that there is arising a new generation that has heard the trumpet call. Moses the
servant of God is dead, the old-order ministry is passing away, and a people is gathering
in preparation to follow their heavenly Joshua into the fullness of the glory and power of
THE VIOLENT TAKE IT BY FORCE
our blessed Lord came teaching the
from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and
the violent take it by force (Mat.
say that this is a negative statement, that Jesus is not talking about the necessity of
taking the Kingdom by violent effort, but that in the hour when the Kingdom was announced
many carnal people sought by the violence of carnal effort to seize the Kingdom for their
own ends. These
words of Jesus in Matthew are, however, a sequel to the words written by Luke. Matthew
says that since the days of John the Baptist, the
violence, violent and force are all related
words with much the same meaning. They picture vital energy and activity used
in forcing or crowding oneself into something. To interpret these words of Jesus one needs
to know the location of the
forget, beloved, that it is possible to enter and possess the
possible rendering of the Greek in this passage would denote not so much to force an
entrance as into a besieged city, but to seize hold of and carry off as
suggests the picture of a prize just coming within reach, which the bolder spirits
immediately capture, without waiting for a signal. This would make the passage read: The
law and the prophets were until John; since then, the
Jesus believed that the Kingdom could be apprehended by any who had the vision and the faith. To that end the work which He laid on His disciples was not that of passive waiting, but that of activelyseeking the Kingdom. By hungering and thirsting after it, by lifting their hearts to it with earnest desire and invincible faith, they were to hasten the day of its coming forth. The blessed firstborn Son of God Himself became the example and prototype of an all-conquering faith, revealing by His nature and His mighty works, by His authority and dominion over all things, by His death and triumphant resurrection, the accessibility of the Kingdom to every son of God. He taught men to cry out to God, THY KINGDOM COME! THY WILL BE DONE IN EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN! And this is the message for those who have received the call to sonship in this significant hour at the end of the age. We are now in the days when decisions are being made and portentous events are in the offering. Some people are making conscious decisions by proclaiming, I will follow the Kingdom and I will pursue it like a dog pursues a fox. When a hound chases a fox, he never gives up. He may lose sight of the fox, but he still has its scent. Even though we may not have the Kingdom in sight, we will not give up either because we know by faith that the Kingdom will come to pass in a people that presses violently into it but, blessed be God, we have the scent and we will follow on!
marginal reading of one Old Version is even stronger the
the army of God the claims of the
kind of faith God is looking for in His sons is tenacious
faith the faith that
embraces the promise and will not let it go. That is how Jacob became
order to gain this Kingdom we must aim high.
is an interesting passage of scripture in Judges 3:31. And after him was Shamgar the son of
Anath, which slew of the Philistines six hundred men with an ox goad: and he also
is probable that many who read these lines have never heard of Shamgar. Except
for the one verse quoted above, there is no other mention of him in the whole Bible, but
that one single verse speaks volumes! Shamgar was a most remarkable man, and a type
of all those who refuse to be hindered from possessing the Kingdom. Shamgar
must be understood in the light of his time. In those days the Philistines had conquered
Enter a man named Shamgar. Shamgar was not a king, nor a general, nor a sergeant. He was not even a private. There is no record of him ever having been in the army or having any military training or experience. Shamgar was a farmer, a very good farmer, no doubt, but only a farmer. He broke a yoke of oxen and used these oxen to plow his fields. At that time this required great boldness and tenacity because when crops were planted, and after much investment and toil, the harvest finally arrived then the Philistines would sweep down and carry away the crops. The whole land lay in desolation, the roads were overgrown with grass and weeds, the villages were ghost towns, because the people were hiding in the walled cities where they had at least a modicum of safety. The land was helpless before the Philistines.
Shamgar was not satisfied to accept this state of affairs and so he went out, plowed his fields with his oxen, and planted his crops. When harvest time arrived six hundred Philistines armed with flashing swords swept down upon this one farmer. The only weapon at Shamgars disposal was an ox goad. An ox goad was usually made from the limb of an oak tree. It would be from eight to ten feet long with the bark stripped off and a sharp iron point affixed to the tip. It was used to jab the ox when he tried to get out of the furrow. On the other end of the goad was a flattened piece of metal that was sharpened for the purpose of scraping the dirt off the plow as it collected. Not a very sophisticated weapon of war! But it was all Shamgar had in addition to his fierce determination, his seething resolve, and his violent passion. This situation would not stand! One thing Shamgar was efficient in the use of an ox goad. In the hands of a man who had handled one from his youth, it could become quite lethal. So when these six hundred Philistines swept down upon Shamgar, he decided that he had had enough; and that he was going to do something about it.
would have come easy. There
was only one farmer with an ox goad and there were six hundred soldiers with gleaming
could any man do without a sword? There was no way to resist such a formidable
best thing to do would be to hide and just let them have the crops. But that
kind of reasoning was not to be found in Shamgars heart. Shamgar
had a deep and profound faith in God. He also had a compassionate concern for his
people, and for his own dignity as an Israelite and a child of God. Armed
with this resolve, he determined to take a stand at whatever the cost. He stood
in his field and as the Philistines came upon him, he grabbed that ox goad and began to
swing it! There
must have been some astonished Philistines. And the battle that ensued became the battle
of all battles in the annals of military history. There were sculls cracking all over the
mighty oak limb with its iron tip on one end and its flat iron on the other was whirling
like the propellers of a helicopter. They must have thought that they had come
upon a hornets nest because they were getting it from all sides. No one
could even get close enough to Shamgar to thrust him with a sword! They were
jabbed and cut and pounded on. When the dust settled there were six hundred
dead Philistines scattered through the fields. Then there is that remarkable little
phrase that says it all: He also delivered
this farmer in ancient
of the tragedies of life is that many people live their whole lives without ever finding
out what they were here for. If they had only known what they were
supposed to do they might have done it. But like the faithless Israelites of old,
they just wander in the wilderness for forty years. They wander through thirty, sixty, eighty
years of life never really knowing where they came from or where they are going. They
never see what the purpose of God is in their lives. They have no sense of divine destiny. Like the
animals, they eke out a meager existence in their little insignificant and meaningless
world of earthly things and carnal
never breathe the rarefied air of the heavenlies, or catch a glimpse of the heights of
had a goal. Shamgar
had a vision. Shamgar
had a hope. Shamgar
had a purpose. Shamgar
was stirred to radical action, to violent movement. Shamgars goal was to get free from
bondage and to free his people from bondage. It was a high and noble and lofty goal. It was
not just an idea in his mind. It was not just an intellectual belief or a
theological position. I
suppose that every Israelite in
words of brother Paul Mueller are so very pertinent here. The
great issue now before the sons of God has to do with our entrance into the
This striving, this pressing, this violence, means that the myths that spiritual warfare is gentlemanly, that you enter and possess and inherit the land essentially unscathed, that it costs relatively little, that all you have to do is believe and confess, that violent men no longer need to take the Kingdom by force these myths must forever end. The hour is late, the day of unveiling is at hand. Only an unreserved commitment, only an indestructible faith, only a radical thrust will birth this manchild of the ages and herald the dawn of that blessed age when the glory of the Lord shall fill the earth as the waters cover the sea, and all peoples and all nations shall come and walk in the light of the Lord, and there shall be no more curse anywhere forever. Sons of God let us arise with courage and boldness and give ourselves to the task!
INHERITING THE KINGDOM
In whom we also have obtained AN INHERITANCE, being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Eph. 1:11).
Having read these words from our beloved brother Paul, three questions only concern us. What is this inheritance? To whom does it belong? How do we obtain it? In order to answer the first of these questions, we are naturally concerned whether the inheritance is worth possessing. If we should be promised an inheritance of a million dollars, I am sure there are few of us who would not become considerably excited. Our interest would be stirred. Our hope would be aroused. If there were conditions laid down which must be fulfilled before we could inherit, we would look carefully at those conditions. We would not risk the loss of our inheritance through indifference or willful disobedience.
Stop to think what a million dollars could do for you if you had it! It could do much, but there is just as much, and more, that it could not do. The power of money to do good and to give happiness is strictly limited. To mention just a few things that it cannot do: It cannot give you an untroubled conscience or peace of mind. If you are sick it can buy you the best medical care, but it cannot guarantee to make or keep you well. Does it give security? After a fashion, yes; yet, those who have it anxiously wonder how long they can keep it, or they may blow it all in just a few months. A thousand hands are outstretched to grab it, by fair means or foul. The ways in which it may be lost or destroyed are too numerous to mention. Nor can it stave off death or prolong life. Its enjoyment is limited strictly to this present world, which is passing away, and it is the matter of only a few years. Such is every human inheritance. We do not despise it for its limited present value. We would simply look at it dispassionately in its true light, in order that we might appreciate the more the words of the hymn writer,
Christians should ever consider
What Christ hath so gloriously taught;
For He who hath made us His children
Would have us retain in our though
How little things earthly do merit,
Lest we who the Kingdom inherit,
The heavenly prize leave unsought.
Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified and made us fit to share the portion which is the inheritance of the saints in the Light. The Father has delivered us and drawn us to Himself out of the control and the dominion of darkness and has transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of His love (Col. 1:12-13, Amplified). This beautiful passage sets forth the great truth that as saints God is preparing us to receive that which the Spirit identifies as the INHERITANCE of the saints. What is the inheritance which is ours as children of God? Do you really know? Of course most Christians have always heard that the grand purpose of our salvation is that we might escape hell and make heaven our home when we die. And most believers have simply accepted this concept without question. But have you ever stopped to prove it for yourself? Did you ever look into the promises of God to see whether it really does say that heaven is the inheritance of the saints?
We have surely read these inspired words of instruction: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time (I Pet. 1:3-5). Let me draw your earnest attention to seven wonderful truths revealed in these words of the apostle. (1) We have been, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, begotten again unto a living hope. (2) This living hope is the hope of an inheritance. (3) This inheritance is incorruptible. (4) This incorruptible inheritance is reserved in heaven the invisible realm of the Spirit for us. (5) Until we fully receive our inheritance we are kept by the power of God unto the inheritance preserved so that we can appropriate it. (6) The inheritance is salvation full and complete. (7) This full salvation is ready for us already prepared for us and appointed to us and shall be revealed in the last time.
to the true nature of our inheritance and the plan by which God is bringing His elect into
it, many of the Lords people make ignorant and unscriptural statements regarding it.
instance, speaking of a departed saint who has passed from this life, they say, He
has gone to his reward. Where does the Bible say such a thing? Nothing
could be father from the truth! It is not
death that qualifies one to
receive his inheritance, but rather, the raising up of ones entire being INTO THE
RESURRECTION LIFE OF CHRIST. The hope is a living, quickening hope. It is secured for us by the resurrection life
of Jesus Christ. This living hope has been given to us by the resurrection of Jesus Christ
from the dead. And
heaven is NOT the inheritance. The inheritance is merely reserved
in heaven for us. That
is, it is reserved, laid up, retained, earmarked, allocated and proportioned in the realm
of the Spirit for us. It
is available and accessible in the Spirit.
is there for us. Let us
say that you have $50,000.00 and all of it is in a checking account at First National
money is all yours but it is kept,
held, reserved, retained, earmarked, allocated and proportioned for you in the bank until you write a check on it. The check
is a claim on the account and by that claim you gain what is reserved in the bank
for you. You
dont have to live in the bank or even go to the bank in order to spend the money. And you
dont have to go to some far-off heaven somewhere in order to receive or live out of your
inheritance in the
the inheritance is
reserved for us, ready to be revealed,
that is, paid, in the last time.
no mistake about it the last
time is not a date on the calendar! That is where so many end-time
teachers go wrong. They
think the last time is a date, so they are always trying to figure out the date, setting
dates for the coming of the Lord, the beginning of the great tribulation, the dawn of the
millennium, or the manifestation of the sons of God. I do not doubt for one moment that our
present age is rapidly drawing to a close, perhaps the new age has already dawned, but
that is not the issue here. The
HEIRS OF GOD
An heirship always implies an inheritance. If we are made heirs of God, we become partakers in the inheritance left us at the death of the Testator. It comes with the divine sonship, and is ours because our Lord died. In the epistle to the Hebrews, we read of the method whereby the inheritance of the Lord was secured for us. How much more (than animal sacrifices) shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause He (Jesus) is the mediator of the new testament (covenant, will), that by means of (His) death...they which are called might receive the promise of eternal INHERITANCE (Heb. 9:14-15).
Notice how the writer tells us that through His death, Christ became the mediator of the New Covenant. And those who are called into this new covenant relationship as sons of God, are given the promise of eternal inheritance. The writer goes on to say, For where a testament (will) is, there must of necessity be the death of the testator (the one who made the will) (Heb. 9:16). Nothing is more certain than this! A will is worth nothing until the person who made the will has died. This is how our eternal inheritance has come to us. The Lord Jesus loved us and He died! Now our inheritance has been made sure. Thank God, that there might be no question about our inheritance, that none could rob us of it, that we might be assured of receiving it, Christ arose from the dead to become the executor of His own estate! I have read accounts where an executor squandered an estate and the heirs were cheated out of their rightful inheritance. This cannot possibly happen to the sons of God for Jesus Christ ever liveth to make sure the inheritance goes to the RIGHTFUL HEIRS.
there is a truth deeper and more wonderful than this. As the ocean includes the seas, the bays, the
straits, which, though known by separate names, are parts of its majestic and
all-embracing fullness, so is there a dimension of HIS INHERITANCE that encompasses all
that is ours in Christ. In
the law of the Old Testament priesthood, the Lord spake unto Aaron, Thou shalt have
no inheritance in their land, neither shalt thou have any part among them. I AM THY
PART, and THINE INHERITANCE, among the children of
Ah, our inheritance is God Himself! That is
the inheritance of the kings and priests of the
Beloved, you and I have been given an inheritance in
the Lord Jesus Christ. He
has left us a title deed to His very own wisdom, righteousness, nature, glory and power. Of
course, Jesus lived in absolute poverty while on this earth; He owned no land, no vast
estate, no great herds of cattle, no store of gold or precious stones, no account in the
He willed to us riches greater than the diamond mines of
INHERITING THE KINGDOM
are learning what it means to be a son of God, realizing Gods great plan and
purposes involved. One
of the most important rights of sonship is that of inheritance. Heirship
depends entirely upon our relationship with God. When we were born again, born of God, we
became children of God and consequently heirs of the Almighty Father. This is
an aspect of the great and wonderful purpose of God in redemption. Inheritance
is also concerned with law and nationality one inherits in
the country of his parentage and according to the laws of that land. Jesus
explained to Nicodemus that in order to enter the
been separated and set apart for the Fathers work in His Kingdom, we are then given
our inheritance, which is the
How little does the wailing infant, over whose cradle hangs the photograph of his fathers vast estate, understand of the inheritance to which he has been born! The old homestead, the far-spread lands, the immense business enterprises, the enormous investments, the accumulated wealth, the prestige of fame and prosperity and power all these things are his; but years must pass ere they can be truly realized or appreciated. And how little do most earnest and zealous and saintly children of God conceive of that inheritance which is ours so soon as we become the children of God by faith in Jesus Christ. As a matter of right all Gods nature and power and glory and wisdom and dominion is ours the moment we are born into His family; as a vast tract of land, filled with woods and rivers and oil wells, belongs to the heir at the moment of birth. But, as a matter of fact, we shall never occupy all until we have grown up into the maturity of Christ. His gifts are for His children, but His inheritance is reserved for His full-grown sons. We are urged, therefore, by the apostle Paul, to press forward from the gift-realm into the inheritance-realm! Therefore it is said...He bestowed gifts on men. His intention was the perfecting and full equipping of the saints, that they should do the work of ministering toward building up Christs body, that it might develop until we all attain...at really mature manhood the completeness of personality which is nothing less than the standard height of Christs own perfection the measure of the stature of the fullness of the Christ, and the completeness found in Him (Eph. 4:8,12-13). Together we can praise God that He has brought us tothat day!
is a scene with which we are all familiar. The car is humming along the road. Suddenly
theres a sputter, a fruitless pumping of the gas pedal and then a full halt. Youre
out of gas! Hundreds
of thousands of motorists have that experience each year, and I must confess that it has
happened to me a few times, too. The problem is not technological. The basic
problem is usually human error either a failure
to plan ahead or heedless attention to an obviously depleted gas level. That
failure to plan ahead is common. Although the motorist is aware of the
distance to be traveled and of the gas performance of his car, he sets out without
adequate fuel. Closed
gas stations or long distances of remote highway on which there are no service stations spell
preparation would have averted the dilemma, but after some inconvenience the destination
will likely be reached. The
are four classes of people in relation to the
Those who inherit the Kingdom are the ones who sit with Jesus upon His throne and rule with Him; those who only enter the Kingdom enjoy its blessings and benefits and they serve Him, not reign with Him. They are citizens and subjects of the Kingdom, not kings and priests. Those who enter the Kingdom will be a great multitude, as John the Revelator saw them... After this (the sealing of the 144,000) I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple: and He that sitteth upon the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; for the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes (Rev. 7:9-10,15-17).
It should not be difficult to understand that those who sit with Christ in His throne occupy an altogether different position than those who merely enter the Kingdom and serve Him before the throne. To him that overcometh shall I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne (Rev. 3:21). Thou hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth (Rev. 5:10). Those who inherit the Kingdom and reign with Christ upon His throne are a select and chosen people, especially prepared for this position, a small number in comparison with the great multitude serving Him before His throne. The requirements for those who inherit the Kingdom are much higher than for the ones merely entering the Kingdom and partaking of its wondrous blessings and bounteous benefits.
Some who read these lines are familiar with the visions of Annie of Argentina. In one of her visions she recounts, While I was with Him in the wonder and glory of His invisible world, He showed me His own entering into the possession which He gives them. He explained that there were two distinct times of tremendous importance in which there could be an entering into ones possession. Now, before the storm or later, after the storm. Those who entered their possession before the storm became His elect ones, with a far superior place and development. In them the perfect will of God was brought forth. Occupying a place very near to Him, they became the instruments of God in His workings. Those who entered their possession after the storm were perfected upon a definitely inferior plane. I believe the storm represents Gods dealings in judgment. Those who now gladly submit to all of Fathers dealings and chastisements upon His sons become qualified to occupy a place of intimacy with Him and share His glorious throne. Those who, though His children, must be dealt with in judgment in order to bring His will into their lives, occupy a lesser place in His Kingdom, a place of serving rather than reigning.
Mueller has written, Obviously, there is a difference between entering the
new land and inheriting it. As soon as
That the hope of honor and glory may be fastened firmly in our spiritual minds let us examine more closely this principle of inheritance. When a titled person dies, the heirs inherit all that is his: the family crest, the property, the land, the fortune, or possibly even a great mass of debts. What I am saying is that sons and heirs inherit everything pertaining to the title of their father. Even in life all children inherit genetically something from their father, such as his nature, life, love, care, and daily provision. But how much of his wealth they will each receive, a wise father will determine by their individual capacities for profiting by possessions. He will not bequeath a mansion to a son who loves only nature and prefers to live in a shack on the creek bank, nor will he leave a million dollars to one who has no appreciation of the value of money and would squander it all in a short time. And he most certainly will not give the family business into the hands of an irresponsible, reckless, and lazy son who has never prepared himself for assuming such responsibilities.
practical principle also operates with the Lord in the realm of the
He who had received one talent also came forward, saying, Master, I knew you to be a harsh and hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you had not winnowed the grain; so I was fearful, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is your own. But his master answered him, You wicked and lazy and idle servant! Did you indeed know that I reap where I have not sowed, and gather grain where I have not winnowed? Then you should have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I could have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent away from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has shall more be given, and he will be furnished richly so that he will have abundance. And throw the good-for-nothing servant into the outer darkness (a realm of loss outside the Kingdom); there shall be weeping and grinding of teeth (in sorrow at being denied the power and glory of the Kingdom) (Mat. 25:14-30).
Christians as a whole have very faulty ideas concerning ruling and reigning with Christ, and the structure and administration of the Kingdom in general. They imagine that by sheer grace they will be caught up into heavenly realms of power and glory. But the Spirit of God teaches us clearly that He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son (Rev. 21:7). The whole passage (Rev. 21) mentions three classes in relation to the Kingdom first, the unconverted, who have their part in the lake of fire the purging, purifying fires of purposeful, redemptive judgment; second, saved peoples with God dwelling among them, children of God who have an entrance into the Kingdom to receive of its blessings and benefits; third, heirs and sons inheriting all things.
George Wylie once gave the following illustration
which beautifully makes the point. He said, In entering the Kingdom you
are just being there, you have a place in the Kingdom, you are a subject of the Kingdom:
but to inherit it is something else. This might help you to understand it better. I live in
one enters the
That this great honor and glory to which Christ is now bringing us through many trials, testings, and sufferings, is predicated upon our overcoming in them, cannot be disputed in the light of what He further states in chapters two and three of the book of the Revelation. Oh, let us give earnest heed to these tremendous statements! And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father (Rev. 2:26-27). To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne (Rev. 3:21). He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son (Rev. 21:7). It is the son who is the heir of the heavenly glories not simply any child of God you may meet on the street or in a church meeting. Let not carnal, self-willed, immature Christians imagine for one moment that it will be given to them to reign with Christ without first having shed their carnal minds and put on the righteousness, knowledge, wisdom, obedience, and maturity of the Son of God.
God only commits Kingdom authority and power to those sons who have reached the spiritual stature of maturity. The scriptures refer to this as the adoption. Paul speaks of this adoption when he says, Having predestinated us unto the ADOPTION OF SONS by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will (Eph. 1:5). To understand the various New Testament references to adoption, we must first have some background to show how the Oriental customs in this regard differ from our own Western concepts. Here in the West, adoption is the taking of a child from one family and making it the member of another family. The Greek word for adoption is HUIOTHESIA. The first half is HUIOS, the common noun for an adult son. The latter half is THESIA, meaning a placement or an installation. In Israel, as in many Eastern countries, after a male child had come to full age and had been instructed and trained and had proven through obedience that he was able to assume the responsibility of the family name, wealth, and power, then the father held a public ceremony where some of the families and neighbors in Israel gathered together and the father publicly placed his boy as a son.
Jesus, in His relationship to His heavenly Father,
passed through these two stages, as the prophet points out: For unto us a child is
born, unto us a son is given... (Isa. 9:6). Consider these two statements: (1) a CHILD is
a SON is GIVEN. Jesus
fulfilled the first when He came into the world as a babe. The
child was born in
The proclamation of adoption gave the son certain privileges not enjoyed by him before this time. These privileges are important to all who have received the call to sonship and will teach us much about our own adoption as Gods sons if we think upon them. First, the son at the adoption ceremony was given the right to use his fathers name. He had the power of attorney and could buy or sell and do business in his fathers name. Secondly, at this time the son was given his inheritance, all the wealth that the father would entrust to him. It was at this time that the prodigal son came to his father to request of him all the portion of goods that belonged to him. Thirdly, and of tremendous importance for our consideration, the son was promoted to equality with his father! None of this was his by right of birth, but only as an attainment received following years of growth, development, discipline, schooling, testing, and experience. Ah, at this present time we know in part and prophesy in part and our spiritual life and ministry is limited to that measure given to us as the children of God. But the Spirit witnesses around the world, by incontrovertible witness and testimony, in dreams and visions, through the mouths of holy prophets and apostles, and by the spirit of wisdom and revelation to many thousands of saints, that the hour is wonderfully close at hand for the adoption, the placing, the manifestation of the sons of God, the full, complete, qualified, prepared, body of that firstborn Son. What a day this is for us, and for the whole creation that groans and travails for deliverance!
The implication of such a marvelous event as the manifestation of the sons of God is staggering to the imagination, and it is small wonder that the immature and careless Christians know nothing at all of it even as the day of manifestation draws nigh. But the implication it holds not only for those who have received the call, but for the entire creation in the age and the ages to come, is beyond expression or even imagination. Jesus Christ, the lonely carpenter of Nazareth, the first manifested Son, who challenged death, healed the sick, cleansed the lepers, raised the dead, cast out devils, wrought mighty signs and wonders and miracles, and had power over the laws of nature and all things, was but one man placed as the Son of the Almighty Father in heaven; but what glory it will be when the entire family of sons is placed by adoption and stands up in the earth to do the works Jesus did and even greater works than those!
Earlier I mentioned that an adopted son shares equality with his father. Suppose you are driving down the street and pass a store with a sign out front that reads, BROWN AND SON HARDWARE what does this suggest to you? Naturally, it suggests that Mr. Brown is the owner of the store and that Mr. Brown has a son who is partner with him in the business. But it further suggests that this son is grown, that he has reached the age of maturity, experience, and responsibility where he can be taken into his fathers business as a partner as a mature business man! You certainly would not expect, upon entering the store and asking for the son, to be presented to a ten year old boy or an infant in a playpen! Nor have we ever seen a sign across the front of a store that read: BROWN AND CHILD HARDWARE! This, then, is exactly the difference between a child of God and a son of God. A child is born, but a son is developed. Since we have been born of God we have Gods nature, the divine nature. But we must grow up into Gods character and ability! That is what it really means to be a manifested son of God!
So many Christians today are satisfied with merely an entrance into the Kingdom realm of God where as children they can enjoy the many blessings and the wonderful benefits of Gods mercy, goodness and kindness. Their eyes are blind to the higher purposes of God, and any efforts to lead them on to higher ground are rebuffed and resisted by a human reasoning that asks why one should waste time on deep things when they are already saved and on their way to heaven. But the new birth, while it is the most astounding miracle of the ages, is, nevertheless, but the birth of a mere spiritual infant. There are many further steps that must follow this birth if one is to come into all the glories and the full heritage which is prepared for those who follow on to know the Lord. The life of God is a free gift of unmerited mercy and favor. But heavenly attainments of spiritual wealth and power and glory and usefulness are given to those who grow up unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (Eph. 4:13). There is great glory, wisdom, power, and responsibility awaiting those who grow up to be Gods sons. Let us press forward unto SONSHIP!
QUALIFICATIONS AND DISQUALIFICATIONS
Gods Kingdom is a body politic. And there are two parties: Gods righteous government, and the opposition. The opposition has been trying for six thousand years, by any and every means, to gain control of the government. But it has been a disheartening battle. The Word says, The government shall be upon HIS (Christ, Head and body) shoulders...of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever (Isa. 9:6-7). Because this rule can never diminish or cease, every apparent victory of the enemy, in the end, has turned out to be a defeat. Of course, God planned it that way from the beginning for our learning and development in the Kingdom.
Out of Gods own mouth proceeds the assertion, I have created the waster to destroy (Isa. 54:16). We gather from this passage that God has created the negative realm for a specific purpose, to serve as a backdrop for the positive realm. That purpose is stated in the opening words of the above quoted verse: I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an INSTRUMENT for His work. The smith that bloweth upon the fire is also the one who heats the furnace seven times hotter! Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing had happened unto you (I Pet. 4:12). Our trials and testings are associated in the Word of God with the ministry of Satan. You never thought of Satan having a MINISTRY? Meditate deeply upon the following passages and I do not doubt that you will see how it is that God Himself sends the adversary into our lives to accomplish that work which can only be done by adversity, trouble, temptation, processing, trials and testings. Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be TEMPTED (tested, tried) OF THE DEVIL. And when the Tempter came to Him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread (Mat. 4:1-3). Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the Devil shall cast some of you into prison, THAT YE MAY BE TRIED...be thou faithful...and I will give thee a crown of life (Rev. 2:10). And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, THAT HE MAY SIFT YOU AS WHEAT: but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren (Lk. 22:31-32).
A friend has written, God is constructing a temple, made of living stones, through which to manifest Himself throughout the ages to come. Satan was created as a chisel and hammer to be used in the construction of this building. The living stones that are even now being placed in this temple have been chosen, says the Lord, in the furnace of affliction (Isa. 48:10). God, however, is mercy; God is love; God is compassion. He is a healer, not a destroyer. It was, nonetheless, necessary that an oven be heated in which to purify the gold a furnace in which the wood, hay, and stubble were to be burned but God, in His nature of love and goodness, could not perform the necessary affliction. It was for this reason that He created AN INSTRUMENT that was capable of performing this essential action in the lives of men, for in Satan God literally created a chastening rod. If we can realize that behind the acts of Satan is the mighty hand of God working to bring forth gold from these earthen vessels, we can rejoice, as David, in our afflictions and trials and exclaim with him, It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn Thy statutes (Ps. 119:7). Praise God! When we begin to see the good that comes from the assaults of Satan in our lives, we are able to appreciate all the more the greatness of our God and the depth of the wisdom of His great mind. He is truly a God of power and might, and all things are in His hand and by His design even this adversary whom we call the Devil.
The human race fell to the deception of the opposition at the very beginning. But instead of that being a victory for the adversary, it turned out to be a blessing for the human race. For now, not only will all men be restored to what was lost by the fall, but those who are called and chosen are translated to the heavenly realm, to a position as far removed from a perfect Edenic state as the east is from the west. The opposition even went as far as to crucify the King, the Lord of glory. But that seeming defeat for Christs cause was a signal victory, for on the third day the crucified One arose from the tomb, thus breaking the sway of death and delivering all who were in bondage from its clutches. Because He arose, so shall every son of Adam arise. The hour is coming, in the which A-L-L that are in the graves shall hear His voice and come forth... (Jn. 5:28-29). The Kingdom of the righteous One has not yet been brought forth in all its fullness and perfection over the earth. We are passing through a period of preparation in which those who have proven themselves faithful to the rightful King and His cause, are being sealed, and now joyfully await the day when, upon the full manifestation of the Kingdom, they will be raised to great honor and power and majesty, to reign as heavenly kings over the earth, to bring life and light and love to all mankind and to all worlds and all creatures throughout the endless vastnesses of infinity.
adherence to the principles of the government is the one and only condition laid down by
which men attain to these positions of honor. But through the ages the opposition has been
trying to overthrow the dominion of the
The Lord has, in mercy, allowed the least faithless of the popular church systems to declare enough of the gospel to lead a few to the Saviour. Some of these receive and teach a genuine baptism in the Holy Spirit, with gifts, and healings, and blessings and miracles. But from here on, practically everything that is taught is nothing but defilement and shame: nothing but the traditions of the elders, and the lies and deceptions of the adversary. Oh, that we all might now leave our delusions and press on toward perfection. My God, lead us onward and upward to be no more children, tossed to and fro, carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the head, even Christ (Eph. 4:14-15). Adult spiritual perfection alone will win the prize incomparable at the end of the race. And that perfection can be attained only by leaving the popular crowd: by seeking the Lord who is our life, and by trusting Him to take us all the way in to His crucifixion, and then into all His glorious fullness of resurrection life and light and glory. Let us die to all that defiles. Let us awaken to righteousness and truth and reality.
From out of the masses of the redeemed our Father in heaven is even now calling and preparing a people to inherit the Kingdom of God, a people that has learned through the processings of this Day to let the mind of Christ dwell in them. They live and act out of that perfect, holy, wise, glorious mind. From the hosts of the redeemed He is raising up a company of kings and priests to share His glorious throne and dominion. Even now they are reigning over a few things, and soon they shall be given dominion over many things. By the spirit of revelation these have been quickened to the knowledge that they are integral parts of Himself all the sons of God elect according to the purpose of Him from the very foundation of the world. Oh, with what incredible faithfulness and omnipotent power our heavenly Father has with His chastening rod and His tender mercies molded the vessels of glory appointed to His Kingdom! Ah, my brother, my sister! Strip for the race! Let nothing impede your progress now. Cast off every weight and the sin which so easily besets us, looking unto Jesus, who is both the author and the finisher of our faith.
as there are certain things which are essential prerequisites to inheriting the
the wisdom given to him by the Lord, Paul writes, Now therefore there is utterly a
fault among you, because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye
not rather take wrong? Why
do ye not suffer yourselves to be defrauded? Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your
ye not that the unrighteous (believers) shall
not inherit the
The above list is not pleasant, but it needs to be
things remind us that the principles of the Kingdom must be laid in our everyday lives. It is
easy to relish the deep teaching of the Kingdom, and revel in the hope of the glory that
is coming, but the nature of holiness and love and perfection must become expressed in
every word and deed of those who call themselves the sons of God. We may
not be subject to the grosser sins of the flesh, but there is also selfishness, anger,
jealousy, idle words, faultfinding, condemning, dissension and a hundred other personality
traits that defile the Kingdom. There is a
passage in Galatians says essentially the same thing: Now the works of the flesh are
manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry,
witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings,
murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have
told you in time past, that they which do
such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God (Gal. 5:19-21. Do you
know any Christians who do such things? Do you practice these things yourself? If you
do, then you can be assured that you will not inherit the
Gods Kingdom today there are great spiritual rewards. There is
joy unspeakable and full of glory, and righteousness and peace in the Holy Ghost. But there
is a Kingdom of life, of incorruption, of immortality, of universal rule and dominion, of
almighty power and glory that lies just before us. But we will never know it or taste it unless
we lay aside what is keeping us from entering in. The exhortation of the first perfect Son of
God reaches us even today, Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say
unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able (Lk. 13:24). This is
referring to how a pack animal, in order to go through a narrow opening in the gate of a
city, first had to have its baggage all unloaded. It was only after being thus disencumbered
that a beast of burden could squeeze through. The sad reason that some who have heard the
call to sonship do not enter into the Kingdom is that they are unwilling to rid themselves
of all the baggage that is keeping them from the will of God. They are
hanging on to many things, fleshly or religious, being afraid to let go of them and trust
God to be all to them. Many
believers have barely gotten the aroma of the rich enjoyment of Christ that is available
to them today. They
stand in the Outer Court, or in the Holy Place, and never enter into the Most Holy Place,
into the very presence of God, into the fullness of incorruptible life, glory and power,
because they are attached to an outward, organizational, ceremonial, ritualistic, creedal,
emotional, sentimental and works-oriented religious realm. Let us
lay aside the weights and the sin which so easily besets us and run the race. If there
is something that is keeping you from inheriting the Kingdom, cast it aside. Do not be
encumbered, my beloved, so that you cannot fully enter in to inherit your promised land. The
INHERITING THE KINGDOM
are learning what it means to be a son of God, realizing Gods great plan and
purposes involved. One
of the most important rights of sonship is that of inheritance.
depends entirely upon our relationship with God. When we were born again, born of God, we
became children of God and consequently potential inheritors of all that pertains to our Almighty Father. One
inherits in the country of his parentage and according to the laws of that land. Jesus
explained to Nicodemus that in order to enter into the
when a person inherits money or an estate, conditions are laid down which must be
fulfilled before that person can receive his inheritance. That
principle is also true in the
are four classes of people in relation to the
THE POOR IN SPIRIT
are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Mat. 5:3). It seems
strange to say that the poor in spirit inherit the
is in that glorious sermon called The Sermon on the Mount that Jesus reveals
this great truth. The
Sermon on the Mount announces the laws or principles of the
we cannot come to be taught of God feeling within ourselves that we are
understanding, we are wisdom, we are power, we are creators, we are kings and rulers, or that we have
anything that commends itself to God. We must be
poor in spirit, poor in
attitude unclothed of
word spirit is used many times to describe an attitude of heart or a state of
we say of someone, He has a good spirit, we dont mean that he has an
holy angel or a well-mannered ghost living inside of him. We mean
that he has a good attitude, disposition, temperament, personality, demeanor, and
expression. The beatitudes
are just that attitudes of
are the BE-ATTITUDES, the very attitudes the sons of God must become. Jesus said in effect, The attitude of a
poor person is the same attitude that will help you to inherit the
in spirit means renounced in spirit. Yielding up everything of self selfishness,
self-assertiveness, self-interest that we may gain
Greek scholar has said that poor in spirit comes closer in the Greek to mean teachable
in spirit. Ah,
that hits the nail on the head! Blessed are the teachable in spirit,
for theirs is the
The saintly George MacDonald has beautifully expressed the truth in these inspiring words: The poor, the beggars in spirit, the humble men of heart, the unambitious, the unselfish; those who never despise men, and never seek their praises; the lowly, who see nothing to admire in themselves, therefore cannot seek to be admired of others; the men who give themselves away these are the freemen of the Kingdom, these are the citizens of the New Jerusalem. The men who are aware of their own essential poverty; not the men who are poor in friends, poor in influence, poor in acquirements, poor in money, but those who are poor in spirit, who feel themselves poor creatures; who know nothing to be pleased with themselves for, and desire nothing to make them think well of themselves; who know that they need much to make their life worth living; these humble ones are the poor whom the Lord calls blessed. The gate of the Kingdom begins to open to such a man.
such a man has attained to, he straightway forgets; it is part of him and behind him. His
business is with what he has not, with the things that lie above and before him. The man
who is proud of anything he thinks he has reached, has not reached it. He is but
proud of himself, and imagining a cause for his pride. If he had reached, he would already have
begun to forget. He
who delights in contemplating whereunto he has attained, is not merely sliding back; he is
already in the dirt of self-satisfaction. The gate of the Kingdom is closed, and he
man who does not house self has room to be his real self Gods
eternal idea of him. He
lives eternally; in virtue of the creative power present in him with momently unimpeded
creation, he is. How
should there be in him one thought of ruling or commanding or surpassing! He can
imagine no bliss, no good in being greater than some one else. He would
lift every man to the embrace of the Father. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they are
of the same spirit as God, and of nature the
CORRUPTION DOES NOT INHERIT...
apostle Paul by the wisdom of the Spirit given to him, said, Now this I say,
brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the
there is one lesson we are learning from all the sex scandals, unethical conduct, fraud
shenanigans coming out of the government in
perfect example we have been given of one who has been changed into the full glory of the
The Holy Spirit, speaking through the apostle Peter, has given us these blessed words of divine understanding. According as His divine power has given us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (II Pet. 1:3-4). The Amplified Bible renders verse four, By means of these He has bestowed on us His precious and exceedingly great promises, so that through them you may escape from the moral decay, rottenness and corruption that is in the world because of covetousness (lust and greed) and become sharers of the divine nature. And J. B. Phillips has beautifully translated, It is through this generosity that Gods greatest and most precious promises have become available to us men, making it possible for you to escape the inevitable disintegration that lust produces in the world and to share in Gods essential nature. Corruption is thus far more than the aging process in our mortal bodies which eventually leads to physical death and dissolution.
The word corruption is from the Greek PHTHORA meaning to destroy by bringing into a worse state or inferior condition. According to Romans 8:20-21, the whole creation, animate and inanimate, is subject to the bondage of corruption. Corruption is so universal and absolute that it was formalized about one hundred years ago into a fundamental law now called The Second Law of Thermodynamics. This law states that all systems, if left to themselves, tend to become degraded and disordered, and deteriorate. Physical systems, whether watches or suns, eventually wear out. Organisms grow old and die. Instead of life and growth there is decay and death. There is no permanency in anything physical. This universal law of the cosmos is diametrically opposed to the theory of evolution which supposes a progressive improvement and refinement of living organisms.
From the very heart of events from the dawn of creation this law of corruption has been manifested in the things that are made. The fall of Adam into sin, separation, sorrow, pain and death, is the very first sad example of the law of corruption. Man has ever been the object of Gods solicitude and care. Man came from the hand of God created in His image and likeness, crowned with glory and honor, and given dominion over all the works of Gods hands. Gradually, however, subjected as he was to this gross material realm, formed of the dust of the ground, the cycle of his career turned downward from his high plane upon which God had placed him, until he reached the depths of disaster. The race of Cain was a filthy, perverted race; they were hateful and violent and they were murderers. They were boastful and vile in the extreme, and would have nothing to do with the God that made them. They were the offspring of a murderer who slew his brother. They filled the earth with their lust, violence, and evil, until even the righteous line of Seth was corrupted and they were so bad that the scripture says that their thoughts and all the intents of their hearts were only evil continually. They were so bad that God could not wait for them to die, and another generation to arise, but in order to re-establish some order in the earth He had to sweep all of them off the earth into hell.
Noah alone, out of all the families of the earth, was perfect in his generation and found grace in the eyes of the Lord. His uncles and aunts were not righteous. His brothers and sisters were not righteous. His cousins and nephews and nieces were not righteous. They were all corrupt. How do we know this? They were all swept away in the judgment of the flood! Only eight souls out of an entire civilization were spared. Righteousness started afresh in the earth with Noah and his seed. But this did not help, for mans one obsession and inborn trait all through the centuries has been rebellion and backsliding and faithlessness. And so again God made a new provision. So far, His saints had freely mixed with the world. But now He purposed to segregate them from the world. He purposed to remove them from the idolatrous influence of the ungodly. And so, beginning with Abraham, He began this segregation. He called Abraham out from the world and promised him a land, an inheritance. When once in this land, his seed were to destroy completely, even to the last man, the heathen who dwelt there. Thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth: but thou shalt utterly destroy them.
was a truly remarkable and wholly new provision. For in Egypt God took His church and made a
nation of them. And
then He led them out of
the account of their sojourn in the wilderness. Read the accounts of their idolatry after
they entered their own land. Yes, the first thing they did upon coming
into their promised land was the exact opposite of what God commanded them. Instead
of destroying their enemies completely, they began making covenants with them. No wonder
God says concerning them, But the house of
Let us go on. God intended that His saints, as long as they obeyed Him and walked with Him, should be masters of the earth. They were: that is, until God, because of their sins and backslidings, had to cut them off. He was very lenient with them. He made more than one new provision following their rebellions from Him. He gave them every consideration and every opportunity to reign over the earth. For did not He tell them that if they would hearken unto Him, thou shalt be blessed above all people? (Deut. 7:14). And the Lord hath avouched thee this day to be His peculiar people, as He hath promised thee, and that thou shouldest keep all His commandments; and to make thee high above all nations which He hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honour (Deut. 26:18-19). If thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God...the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth (Deut. 28:1). Ah, here was great provision made which would enable Gods people to dominate the whole world! And they did enjoy that heritage of power and honor for a time. Consider the Patriarchs, and Job. Consider Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, of whom God witnessed that they were very great. And then consider king David, and consider king Solomon in all his glory, a glory so resplendent that even the Queen of Sheba witnessed, Howbeit I believed not the words, until I came, and mine eyes had seen it, and, behold, the half was not told me: the wisdom and prosperity exceedeth the fame which I heard (I Kings 10:7).
then there came a change. A new order was introduced. For, in
spite of all of Gods provisions and blessings, His people went from bad to worse. And here
is the result, foretold by Moses in the wilderness. He told them that if they would not keep Gods
commandments then, instead of being masters of the earth, the Lord shall cause thee
to be smitten before thine enemies...thou...SHALT BE REMOVED INTO ALL THE KINGDOMS OF THE
EARTH (Deut. 28:15-25). Of all the physical proofs of the inspiration
and infallible accuracy of the prophecies of the Bible, there is no proof that can compare
to that great sign of signs which is the NATION OF ISRAEL. In 721
B.C. the northern house of
Oh what a stormy sea the world has sailed from Adams transgression until now! What indescribable travail the earth has seen under the curse of bondage to corruption! And not just man, not alone the earth, but the whole creation was made subject to this vanity and it is the whole creation that now groans with a sort of universal travail, waiting for the sons of God to reach the glory and honor of adoption, waiting for the transfigured family of sons at last to speak the wonderful words of life and deliverance. In the throes of corruption all things are propelled by the swirling momentum of the downward spiral to destruction, utterly helpless and powerless to invent any method of preventing the ultimate catastrophe.
dark foreboding and terror of every creature and all things is not unlike that of the
victim of punishment by the Hohenstaufen house in
When he realized that this comfortably and beautifully furnished room was to be his death cell and the place of his doom, invariably cold perspiration poured out of his temples and he cried out frantically for help. But no response came. The metal walls simply gave back a hollow echo and continued to draw closer. When the furniture had been demolished by the pressure and the walls had come so close he could not do anything but stand upright, he placed his back to the wall, and bracing himself with his hands and feet, he tried with one superhuman effort to withstand his doom. But the walls were not to be gainsaid; they were not to be denied of their prey. Finally the walls crushed him to death. Is this not the sense of every man who beholds the ravishing power of corruption in his body? As old age appears, with its multiplied physical weaknesses, degeneration, ailments and limitations, they feel themselves crowded to the wall and think they are daily approaching their fatal and final end. Unable to make any further resistance, they passively submit themselves to the inevitable and slip away quietly from this world. Behold in this, my friend, the awesome power of the BONDAGE OF CORRUPTION!
The crumbling ruins of ancient civilizations buried beneath the swirling sands of ages bear silent testimony to the unrelenting power of corruption. Proud empires which like the towering mount Everest dominated the lives and fortunes of multitudes of men and vast stretches of global real estate, have disappeared from even the memory of those now dwelling upon the earth. In the afterglow of a thousand battlefields, in the shattered dreams of kings and world conquerors, in the light of treachery, moral decay, and spiritual bankruptcy, the word of God standeth invincibly true. Mighty empires and nations that with the vaunted pride of wealth, commerce, education, refinement, and disciplined armies controlled the souls of men have all eventually fallen and crumbled to dust beneath their own weight, becoming like the dust of a summer threshing floor and the wind blew them away.
The universe itself is no less subject to the bondage of corruption. As a recent article in Discover magazine reported, six or seven billion years from now the sun will begin to die, but it will not die alone. When the sun runs out of hydrogen fuel at its core and begins burning the hydrogen, helium, and heavier elements in its outer layers, it will swell tremendously, expanding out to earth's orbit. In its death throes it will swell into a red giant star, engulfing and incinerating Mercury, Venus, and Earth. Life on earth if indeed any still exists will surely end. A like fate awaits every star and planet in every solar system in all the two hundred billion known galaxies that make up the universe. Everything is winding down and burning out. In the light of this solemn knowledge let us reflect again upon the Holy Spirits sacred message of hope and deliverance, For the earnest expectation of the creation waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. For the creation was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of Him who hath subjected the same in hope. Because the creation itself shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body (Rom. 8:19-23). Lift up your heads and rejoice! O creation the sun will not burn itself out, the earth will not be incinerated, the universe will not collapse, the myriad worlds scattered through space will not pass away, because the creation itself shall also be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the sons of God! What a word! What a hope! Universal deliverance from the bondage of corruption! The reversal of the Second Law of Thermodynamics! No wonder the earnest expectation of all creation WAITS FOR THE MANIFESTATION OF THE SONS OF GOD! Hallelujah!
and blood cannot inherit the
No one can deny it we must be changed, spirit, soul, and body! Only by a mighty quickening of divine life can soul and body inherit the Kingdom. The apostle does not say that the body cannot inherit the Kingdom, merely that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom. The word of God has made it very clear that our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able to subdue all things unto Himself (Phil. 3:21). The vile body of flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom, but the changed body does indeed inherit the Kingdom. Oh, the mystery of it!
Very few of the Lords people understand the great truth that there are two bodies, but the truth is that there is a NATURAL BODY, and there is a SPIRITUAL BODY (I Cor. 15:44). Many seem to think that the spiritual body will be the natural body changed or transformed. But that is not what the apostle tells us. It is not said that there IS a natural body, and some glad day after while there SHALL BE a spiritual body. No! There IS a natural body, and there IS a spiritual body. There IS! Both bodies are a present tense reality. The natural body is the body of the outward man, whereas the spiritual body is the body of the inward man. That is why Paul in another place assures us, Though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day (II Cor. 4:16). The outward-man has a body and that body is perishing we all know that! But few understand that the inward-man also has a body that is renewed, being raised up within us, day by day. The outer-man body is the flesh and blood body inherited from Adam. The inner-man body is the glorious resurrection body of Jesus Christ inherited from Him. Just as the outer-man body is not given to us ready-made, but following conception in our mothers womb is graduallyformed over a number of months, and continues to be formed for years until we reach adulthood; so the inner-man body is not given to us ready made, but subsequent to our begettal as children of God the spiritual resurrection body of Jesus is formed in us by the life of Christ raised up in us, progressively fashioned as we put on the Lord Jesus Christ. And just as the outer-man body is from earth, so the inner-man body is from the Lord from heaven. The first is a natural and earthly body; the second is a spiritual and heavenly body.
The inner-man body is the spiritual body. The inner man body is our house from heaven. So the apostle continues by showing how it is that the inner-man body exists even if the outer-man body is dissolved or passes away. But Gods highest purpose is that the outer-man body be caught up into, and swallowed up by, the inner-man body.