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God's Word Seven

A website for those who wish to digest the "strong [solid] meat,"
not just "the milk or meat," of the Word of God.
~ Hebrews 5:12-14

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Let Us Go On BOOK
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast
Foreword

There is a logical progression in thought as one moves through the five major warnings in the book of Hebrews.  And all of the warnings are directed to Christians alone, centering around the same subject matter — Christians either realizing or failing to realize the salvation of their souls/lives, synonymous with Christians either realizing or failing to realize the rights of the firstborn; and this salvation, realizing these rights, has to do strictly with the position that Christians will occupy in the coming Messianic Era (Hebrews 6:12, 18-20; 10:36-39; cf. James 1:21; 1 Peter 1:9).

In the first warning, the salvation set before Christians is called, so great salvation, and is specifically stated later in the epistle to be “the saving of the soul.”  This is the greatest thing God has ever designed for redeemed man, for it centers around man being removed from the earth, placed in the heavens, and occupying the throne as co-heir with the “heir of all things” (Hebrews 1:2-2:5; 10:39; cf. Hebrews 3:1).

Then the second warning outlines the route that one must travel during his pilgrim journey if he would one day come into a realization of so great salvation.  The route carries one from Egypt to Canaan.

Spiritual lessons are drawn from the historic account of the Israelites under Moses, forming the type.  And these spiritual lessons are seen in the antitype surrounding the experiences of Christians under Christ.  The Israelites under Moses had been called out of Egypt and were being led toward an earthly land, wherein their calling was ultimately to have been realized.  And Christians under Christ have been called out of the world and are being led toward a heavenly land, wherein their calling is ultimately to be realized.

With these things in mind, the third warning then continues with one major overriding thought:  Let Us Go On! (Hebrews 6:1).  The thought has to do with moving from immaturity to maturity;  and this maturity, contextually, centers around Christians coming into a knowledge and understanding of the things surrounding the land set before them, for a revealed purpose.

In other words, so great salvation has been set before Christians (warning one), and the route that Christians must travel to realize this salvation has been well marked (warning two);  then, with these things as an established background, the writer exhorts Christians to go on to a mature knowledge and understanding of those truths that God has revealed concerning the land set before them (warning three).

Entering into that land and realizing the rights of the firstborn therein is the goal of the Christians’ calling.  And pressing toward this goal or any goal apart from knowing and understanding certain things about the goal, or things which may lie in the pathway, preventing one from reaching the goal, would be unheard of.

This is easy to see from the manner in which Christians are commanded to array themselves for the spiritual warfare in Ephesians 6:11ff, for they cannot properly array themselves apart from a knowledge and understanding of that which lies out ahead.

The “helmet of salvation,” for example, is identified as the “hope of salvation” (cf. Ephesians 6:17; 1 Thessalonians 5:8); and the “hope of salvation” has to do, not with the salvation that Christians presently possess, but with the salvation of the soul (Hebrews 6:12, 18-19; 10:36-39), which is the central message of the book of Hebrews.

The “helmet of salvation” cannot be possessed apart from a “hope” based on knowledge and understanding.  But it is only one part of the armor, and the possession of other parts of the armor require a similar knowledge and understanding surrounding the goal of the Christians’ calling.  And, apart from being properly arrayed for battle after the fashion revealed in Ephesians 6:11ff, Christians will suffer defeat time after time and ultimately fail to realize the goal of their calling.

Drawing from the previous two warnings in order to understand the third is the progressive manner in which the things in this book, Let Us Go On, have been structured; and this is also the progressive manner in which any correct exposition of Hebrews 5; 6 must be viewed.

Scripture must be understood in the light of Scripture.  There is first the near context, and there is then the far context.  The near context, in this case, takes one back to the previous two warnings; and the far context takes one to the various other related points in Scripture throughout both the Old and New Testaments.  One must compare “spiritual things with spiritual” if he would come into a correct knowledge and understanding of the things that God has revealed to man in His Word (1 Corinthians 2:9-13).
Chapter One
From Aaron to Melchizedek

For every high priest taken from among men is appointed for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins.

He can have compassion on those who are ignorant and going astray, since he himself is also subject to weakness.

Because of this he is required as for the people, so also for himself, to offer sacrifices for sins.

And no man takes this honor to himself, but he who is called by God, just as Aaron was.

So also Christ did not glorify Himself to become High Priest, but it was He who said to Him: “You are My Son, today I have begotten You.”

As He also says in another place: “You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 5:1-6)

Aaron was a minister in the sanctuary during that period when the children of Israel, under Moses, traversed the wilderness on their pilgrim journey from Egypt to Canaan.  Those Israelites constituted a nation that had experienced death (via a substitute) in Egypt, burial as they moved down into the divide between the waters of the Red Sea from the Sea’s western banks in Egypt, and resurrection as they moved up out of this divide between the waters on the Sea’s eastern banks in the wilderness.  The first had been set aside and the second established (Hebrews 10:9); and this nation, under Moses, passed through these experiences for one central purpose.

This nation was to be established within a theocracy in the land of Canaan as God’s firstborn son; and, occupying this position, the Gentile nations of the earth were to be both subject to and blessed through Israel.

God had previously made certain promises to Abraham, and He had established a covenant with Abraham concerning the land wherein these promises were to be realized.  Before Abraham ever left Ur of the Chaldees, God revealed His plans and purposes in relation to Abraham, his progeny, and the Gentile nations of the earth.  Then, once Abraham had left Ur and entered into the land of Canaan, God established a covenant with him concerning the land itself (Genesis 12:1-3; 13:14-17; 15:18-21; 17:7-8).

Within God’s plans and purposes, a nation, separate and distinct from the Gentile nations, was to be brought into existence through Abraham.  The descendants of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob (Genesis 17:18-19; 21:12; 27:29), comprising this separate and distinct nation, would come under God’s direct blessing; but such would not be the case with any Gentile nation.  The Gentile nations of the earth were to be blessed only through the nation emanating from the loins of Abraham, the nation of Israel.

And these blessings were to be realized by and through Israel only as this nation dwelled in a particular land — the land of Canaan, to which Abraham had been called when he left Ur.  God, through an unconditional and everlasting covenant gave this land to Abraham and his seed (Genesis 13:14-17; 15:18-21; 17:7-8; 26:3, 4; 28:13-14); and the seed of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob holds (and will always hold) the title deed to this land for one central purpose, recorded in Genesis 12:1-3.

Then, in keeping with Deuteronomy 28:1-14, the Gentile nations being blessed through Israel were also to be subject to Israel.  Israel was to be placed at the head of the nations (cf. Genesis 22:17-18; Exodus 19:5; Deuteronomy 7:6), within a theocracy.  God Himself was to dwell in the midst of His people (cf. Exodus 40:34-38; Leviticus 26:11-12; Joel 2:27-32), blessings were to be poured out on the people of Israel (Deuteronomy 28:2-14), and these blessings were to flow through Israel to the nations of the earth (Genesis 12:3).  That is, the nations of the earth were to be subject to Israel — God’s firstborn son, a kingdom of priests — and, in this manner, be blessed through Israel.

This is how it was to have been under the old covenant during the days of Moses, and later Joshua; and this is how it one day will be when God makes a new covenant with the house of Israel during the days of the Son of Man.  Then, in that coming day, God, in the person of His Son, will dwell among the Jewish people, in a theocracy (cf. Joel 2:27-32).

During Moses’ day, Aaron was a minister in the sanctuary on behalf of a people who had been redeemed from Egypt for the purpose at hand.  This was an earthly sanctuary, and the purpose at hand was earthly.  The Israelites had been redeemed and called out from one part of the earth to occupy a particular position in another part of the earth, within a theocracy.

In the antitype, Christ is presently ministering in a heavenly sanctuary (after which the earthly was patterned), and He is ministering on behalf of a people who have been redeemed from the present world for a particular purpose.  Christians are presently being called out from this world to one day occupy positions in heavenly places (paralleling Israel’s earthly calling in a type-antitype framework [called to be “kings and priests,” “a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people”]), within a theocracy (1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 5:10; cf. Exodus 19:5-6).

And Christ, ministering in the heavenly sanctuary today, is ministering after the order of Aaron.  He is ministering on the basis of shed blood on behalf of a redeemed people removed from this world for a purpose, paralleling Israel’s removal from Egypt for a purpose.

(Note that Christ can minister in the sanctuary in this manner today, though not of the Levitical line, because He is not ministering as High Priest to individuals under the Mosaic Economy.  Rather, He is ministering on behalf of those who form the one new man “in Christ.”

But in that coming day when Israel is brought back into the picture, Christ’s priesthood, of necessity, will have to change.  In that day Christ will be the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek, a priesthood of an entirely different order.)

The Melchizedek priesthood though, which Christ will one day exercise, is an entirely different matter.  Melchizedek was a king-priest in Jerusalem, not a minister in the sanctuary as Aaron in the past or as Christ during the present time.  There’s nothing recorded in Scripture about Melchizedek in connection with a sanctuary and shed blood.  This was the type of ministry Aaron occupied, not Melchizedek.  And this is exactly the same type of ministry Christ presently exercises.  For this reason alone (though other reasons exist), it is incorrect to associate Christ’s present high priestly ministry with the Melchizedek priesthood.

Christ though is presently a priest “after the order of Melchizedek,” but only in the same sense that Christ was also born “King of the Jews” (cf. Matthew 2:2; Hebrews 6:19-20).  Christ has yet to enter into either position; and both will be realized in that coming day when Christ comes forth as “King” in the day of His power.  Or, to state matters another way, both will be realized in that coming day when Christ comes forth as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek.

The latter part of Hebrews 4 deals with Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary (patterned after the order of Aaron); but Hebrews 5 is transitional.  Chapter five moves the reader from Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary to that future time when He comes forth from the sanctuary and assumes a different type of ministry.  This chapter moves one from the antitype of Aaron (present) to the antitype of Melchizedek (future), something seen in the antitype of Numbers 35.

The Death of the Priest

Numbers chapter thirty-five relates the account of God instructing the children of Israel to set aside six cities to be “cities for refuge.”  And within this account one will find central truths surrounding that future time — which is seen in Hebrews chapter five — when the present high priestly ministry of Christ, after the order of Aaron, is concluded and Christ comes forth from the heavenly sanctuary as the great King-Priest, after the order of Melchizedek.

Three of the cities of refuge were to be on the east side of Jordan, and the three remaining were to be on the west side of Jordan (Numbers 35:14).  The three cities on the east side of Jordan were selected by Moses, prior to his death and the subsequent entrance of the Israelites into the land of Canaan (Deuteronomy 4:41-43); and the three cities on the west side of Jordan were selected by the children of Israel under the leadership of Joshua, following their entrance into the land (Joshua 20:1-7).

These cities were set aside to provide a sanctuary for any man who killed another man through an unpremeditated act.  The Divine decree given to Noah and his sons following the Flood required the death of the slayer at the hands of man.

Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed; for in the image of God He made man. (Genesis 9:6)

And God’s injunction concerning capital punishment for a capital crime was later reiterated to Moses and is part of the Mosaic Economy as well (Exodus 20:13; 21:12ff).

The command concerning capital punishment for a capital crime was thus given to Noah and his sons over eight hundred years before it was delivered to the children of Israel under Moses.  Consequently, man not being under the Mosaic Economy today has nothing to do with the validity or non-validity of capital punishment for a capital crime, for not only does the biblical origin of this injunction precede the giving of the Law through Moses but the command given to Noah and his sons (approx. 2,300 B.C.) has never been repealed.

Although capital punishment for a capital offense has never been repealed, provision was later made for a man who killed another man unintentionally.  This was the divinely established purpose for setting aside the six cities of refuge (cf. Exodus 21:12-13).  These cities were to be located at places where at least one city would be easily accessible to any Israelite living in the land of Canaan.  And should one Israelite kill another Israelite by accidental means — unintentionally — he could flee to the nearest city of refuge and be provided a sanctuary from the near kinsman of the person who had been slain.

It fell to the lot of the near kinsman to fulfill God’s injunction concerning capital punishment for a capital crime.  The near kinsman was to confront the slayer and, in turn, slay him.  God’s requirement in the matter was blood for blood (Numbers 35:16-21; cf. Deuteronomy 19:21).

God’s previous instructions to Noah and his sons remained unchanged within the framework of God’s instructions to Moses.  Something though was added to these instructions within the Mosaic Economy.  Provision was made for the person guilty of accidental, unpremeditated murder.  And once the Israelite guilty of such an act had taken advantage of that provision — once the slayer had fled to and was inside the walls of one of the six designated cities of refuge — the near kinsman, as long as the slayer remained in this place, couldn’t touch him.

Any individual though who fled to one of the cities of refuge must, at a later time, be returned to the area where the slaying occurred and appear before a judicial court.  And, should the testimony at this court prove to be negative — i.e., show that the man had committed the act in a willful manner — at least two witnesses were required to testify against the man in this respect.

If the slayer was found guilty of willful murder, he would no longer be granted sanctuary in a city of refuge.  Rather, he would be turned over to the near kinsman to be slain; and the near kinsman, slaying the man, would not be guilty of blood himself.

But if the slayer, on the other hand, was found guilty only of involuntary manslaughter, he would be returned to the safety of the city of refuge to which he had previously fled (Numbers 35:22-28).

Then there was the matter of a ransom.  This ransom constituted a payment for the life of the one found to have committed involuntary manslaughter.  No ransom though was provided for the life of a person found guilty of willful manslaughter.  Rather, he was to forfeit his own life (blood for blood), apart from a ransom.

But though the ransom was a provision for the one having committed involuntary manslaughter, there was a stipulation: The ransom could not be used until the death of the high priest (Numbers 35:28, 32).

Once the high priest in the camp of Israel had died and the ransom had been paid, the individual who had previously been found guilty only of involuntary manslaughter was then free to leave the particular city of refuge where he had been provided a sanctuary and return to the land of his possession.  And once this had occurred, the near kinsman no longer had any claim on that individual.

1)  Israel, the Slayer

In the Old Testament (in the type) it was individual Israelites who found themselves guilty of manslaughter (willful or involuntary) and, consequently, in a position where they would either be slain or be granted protection in a city of refuge.  Today (in the antitype) it is the entire nation of Israel that finds itself guilty of manslaughter and in a position to either be slain or be granted protection.

The nation of Israel is guilty of blood.  The nation is guilty of the death of their Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ.

The paschal lamb was given to Israel, and only Israel could slay this lamb (Exodus 12:1ff).  “Jesus” was the Paschal Lamb (1 Corinthians 5:7), to whom all the sacrificial lambs in the Old Testament pointed;  and only Israel could have slain Jesus, which is exactly what, according to Scripture, occurred (Acts 2:23, 36; 3:12-15).

Israel today is unclean by its contact with the dead body of God’s Son, with cleansing to be provided on the seventh day — the seventh 1,000-year period, the Messianic Era (Numbers 19:11-12).  But how is Israel’s act, as the slayer, to be reckoned?  Was it a premeditated act?  Or was it an unpremeditated act?

If it was a premeditated act, the nation would have to be cut off.  No ransom could be provided (it would have to be blood for blood; the nation would have to pay with its own life); nor, if a premeditated act, could the nation ever be allowed to return to the land of her possession (which would mean, in the final analysis, that God’s promises to Abraham, beginning with Genesis 12:1-3, could never be realized).

However, if Jesus was delivered into Israel’s hands after a manner that would allow the nation’s act of crucifying her Messiah to be looked upon as unpremeditated murderi.e., allow the nation’s act to be looked upon as having been done through ignorance — then Israel could be granted protection and a ransom could be provided.  And beyond that, the ransom could one day be used by the nation, at which time Israel would be free to return to the land of her possession (allowing God’s promises to Abraham, beginning with Genesis 12:1-3, to be fulfilled).

The biblical testimony concerning the manner in which the nation’s act must be viewed was given by Jesus Himself at Golgotha; and the same testimony was later provided by Peter, following the death, burial, resurrection, and ascension of Christ.

Note the words of Jesus:

. . . Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.” (Luke 23:34a)

Then note the words of Peter:

Men of Israel . . .

But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,

and killed the Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses. . . .

Yet now, brethren, I know that you did it in ignorance, as did also your rulers. (Acts 3:12, 14-15, 17 [12a]).

Thus, Jesus was delivered into the hands of Israel (cf. Exodus 21:13; Acts 2:23) after a manner that not only allowed the Jewish people to act after the described fashion but also prevented them from acting after any other fashion as well.  Consequently, Israel is to be granted protection, a ransom will be provided, and the Jewish people will be free to one day avail themselves of this ransom and return to the land of their possession, though only after the antitype of the death of the high priest.  And, at this time, all of God’s promises to Abraham through Isaac, Jacob, and Jacob’s twelve sons, beginning with Genesis 12:1-3, will be fulfilled.

2)  The High Priest and the Ransom

In the camp of Israel there was only one high priest at any one time.  At the time of the high priest’s death, he was succeeded by another from the Aaronic line; and the high priestly ministry in the Aaronic line continued in this manner, after this fashion.

Aaron ministered in the sanctuary in the earthly tabernacle, with blood, on behalf of the people.  Jesus, on the other hand, is presently ministering in the heavenly sanctuary, with blood, on behalf of the people — a ministry patterned after the order of Aaron.  And, as evident from Hebrews chapter five, along with other related Scripture, Christ’s present ministry after the order of Aaron will not continue indefinitely.

There is coming a day when Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary will end.  And the termination of this ministry, along with certain events that will occur relative to Israel in that day, was typified by the death of the high priest in the camp of Israel and events that occurred relative to the slayer when the high priest died.

And these events, as they pertain to the slayer, have to do with two things in the antitype:

1) Israel’s cleansing from defilement through contact with the dead body of the nation’s Messiah.

2) A restoration the Jewish people to the land of their possession.

The word ransom (Numbers 35:31-32 [translated “satisfaction,” KJV]) is from a cognate form of the word for “atonement” in the Hebrew text.  The underlying thought behind “atonement” is to cover; and that is the same thought expressed by the “ransom” in this chapter.  This ransom provided a covering — a covering from view, a putting away, a blotting out — of the previous capital act (an unpremeditated act).  And once the ransom had been used, which could be only after the death of the high priest, the whole matter was put away.  The person was then free to return to the land of his possession; and the near kinsman of the one slain could no longer have any claim on him whatsoever, for the matter had been put away and could never be brought up again.

(In the type, this ransom was connected with some aspect of the person and work of the high priest, or of other priests.  For example, this ransom could not be used until the high priest had died.  Then, this ransom had to do with a covering [with atonement] from defilement wrought through contact with a dead body.  And such a work in Numbers 19, where cleansing from this type defilement is dealt with, was performed by a priest.

The high priestly ministry of Aaron and his successors in the camp of Israel, whether in this or in other areas of defilement, was a work on behalf of the saved, not the unsaved.  Their work was for those who had already appropriated the blood of slain paschal lambs, pointing to Christ and His shed blood at Calvary [the slain Paschal Lamb].  This succession of high priests ministered in this manner, on the basis of shed blood, typifying Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary after this same fashion [a ministry for the saved, on the basis of shed blood].

Thus, that which is being dealt with in Numbers 35 — portending a priestly work — has to do with the cleansing of saved individuals from defilement [defilement wrought through contact with a dead body], not with issues surrounding the death of the firstborn [issues surrounding eternal salvation].

And the Jewish people, for two reasons, find themselves in a position today where they cannot avail themselves of this cleansing [cleansing from contact with the dead body of their Messiah]:

1) The Jewish people today are in an unsaved state.

2) The Jewish people, even if they were in a saved state today, could not presently avail themselves of the ransom [cleansing] because of the nature of Christ’s present priestly ministry.

Cleansing from all defilement during the present dispensation is brought to pass through only one means — through Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat.  Though Christ is not of the Levitical line, His present ministry is patterned after the order of Aaron’s ministry; and, because Christ is not of the Levitical line, if God were dealing with Israel on a national basis today, He could not deal with the Jewish people in relation to Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary [else He would violate that which He Himself established].

The Jewish people, if they were being dealt with in relation to the priesthood today, would have to be dealt with in relation to that which is set forth concerning the priesthood in the Mosaic Economy [as will be seen through the covenant Antichrist will make with Israel during the coming Tribulation, when God completes His national dealings with Israel during Man’s Day].  The priest, within the Mosaic Economy, had to be of the Levitical line.  And Christ is not of this line.  Christ is from the tribe of Judah.

Thus, dealing with the Jewish people in relation to Christ’s high priestly ministry today would be completely out of the question.  They could not go to Christ and receive cleansing, for the Mosaic Economy does not recognize a priestly ministry of the nature Christ is presently exercising [a non-Levitical ministry patterned after the order of Aaron, a Levite].  And any priesthood that the Jewish people themselves could enact today, from the Levitical line, would be completely non-efficacious.

However, as previously seen, note that Christ [though from the tribe of Judah] can conduct a ministry patterned after the order of Aaron for Christians during the present dispensation, for Christians are not under the Mosaic Economy.  Christians form part of the one new man, which is neither Jew nor Gentile [cf. Galatians 3:26-29; Ephesians 2:12-15].  Thus, for Christians, Christ’s lineage has nothing to do with the matter one way or the other.

But, before the Jewish people can enter into the picture as matters pertain to the priesthood and the ransom, seen in Numbers 35, Christ must first terminate His present ministry in the sanctuary and come forth as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek.  And, as well, a new covenant [which will replace the old covenant] will be made with Israel at this time [Jeremiah 31:31-34].

In the preceding respect, from the vantage point of the antitype, it is an easy matter to see why the high priest in the camp of Israel had to die before the slayer could avail himself of the ransom and return to the land of his possession.  God had simply established and brought matters to pass after this fashion in the history of Israel in order to form a type, with a view to the antitype.  Christ’s high priestly ministry in the sanctuary has to terminate firstOnly then can the slayer [Israel] avail herself of the ransom and return to the land of her possession.)

Thus, the ransom for Israel’s capital offense has already been paid.  Jesus paid this ransom at Calvary, shedding His own blood — blood that is presently on the mercy seat in the heavenly sanctuary.  However, although the ransom (providing atonement) for Israel’s sin has already been paid, the nation cannot avail herself of this ransom or return to the land of her possession until the antitype of the death of the high priest.

Israel though must first experience her national Passover in fulfillment of Exodus 12:7 and Leviticus 23:5 — by applying the blood that was shed 2,000 years ago.  And this can occur only at the termination of Israel’s present blindness (Romans 11:25).  Israel, as the two disciples on the road to Emmaus in Luke 24:13ff, must continue in a blinded condition until the resurrected Christ, by His personal presence at His second coming, opens the Old Testament Scriptures to the Jewish people’s understanding in this respect (cf. Luke 24:16, 25-27, 31).

In that day, Israel’s eyes will be opened; and a nation will be “born at once” (Isaiah 66:8).  The entire nation will experience the birth from above at the same time [when the Jewish people look upon the One whom “they have pierced” (Zechariah 12:10)]).  And this will occur only after Christ terminates His present ministry, departs the heavenly sanctuary, and comes forth as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek.  Then cleansing can occur, allowing the ransom seen in Numbers chapter thirty-five to be accessed.

It will be in that day — not before — that Israel will experience her national Passover, be able to avail herself of the ransom, and be free to return to the land of her possession.  As long as Christ occupies His present position in the heavenly sanctuary, Israel cannot avail herself of the paid ransom and return to this land.  Israel must remain in her present condition — blinded — throughout the present dispensation;  and, according to related Scripture, Israel will not be removed from this condition until a few years beyond the present dispensation, at the end of Man’s Day, at the end of the Tribulation.

(Insofar as Christians are concerned, Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary will terminate when the Church is removed from the earth into the heavens, at the end of the present dispensation.  However, Christ’s ministry in the sanctuary will apparently continue for others through the Tribulation, else the saved among the earth-dwellers would have no High Priest.

Christ though will not come forth as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek, appearing to Israel after this fashion, until the end of Man’s Day, the end of the Tribulation.  And it will be only at this time that events surrounding the antitype of the death of the high priest in Numbers chapter thirty-five can occur.)

Also, the Jewish people one day availing themselves of the ransom in Numbers 35 would correspond with the fulfillment of events set forth in the second and sixth of the seven feasts of the Lord in Leviticus 23 — the feast of Unleavened Bread, which immediately followed the Passover, and the Day of Atonement.

“Leaven” points to that which is vile, corrupt (cf. Matthew 13:33; 16:1-12; 1 Corinthians 5:6-8); and the fulfillment of this festival in the type had to do with a cleansing of the house, a removing of all leaven from the house immediately following the Passover (cf. Exodus 12:8-20; Leviticus 23:6-8).

And in the antitype, it is the same.  The fulfillment of this festival will immediately follow the fulfillment of the Passover.  It will occur immediately following Israel applying the blood of the slain Paschal Lamb, blood shed 2,000 years prior to this time.  And because Israel had previously shed this blood, the entire house of Israel will be found in an unclean condition in that day, an uncleanness that will have to be dealt with.

Israel, in that day, will be found in this unclean condition due to the nation’s prior contact with the dead body of their Messiah.  The house, resultantly, will be found completely leavened.  And the leaven will have to be removed; it will have to be put out, done away with.

But, though all things associated with leaven will be put out of the house (fulfilling the second festival, the festival of Unleavened Bread), cleansing cannot occur until events surrounding the fulfillment of the sixth festival (the Day of Atonement) take place.  Only then will the nation be able to access the ransom, be cleansed of defilement due to contact with the dead body of their Messiah, and be free to return to the land of their possession.  Only then can the seventh and last festival be realized — the feast of Tabernacles, a time of rest at the completion of the previous six festivals, foreshadowing the time of rest awaiting the people of God (a seventh-day rest, a Sabbath rest), the Messianic Era.

This is where the account of the slayer availing himself of  the ransom in Numbers chapter thirty-five, following the death of the high priest, is seen being fulfilled in the antitype (along with the fulfillment of that which is seen in Numbers 19).  Israel in that day will be cleansed of this defilement, and the house will no longer be leavened.

Accordingly, only in that coming day, only following cleansing from Israel’s present defilement wrought through prior contact with the dead body of the nation’s Messiah, will the Jewish people be free to return to the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; and only then can the Jewish people realize their calling in this land, with God’s promised blessings flowing out through Israel to the Gentile nations of the earth after the fashion that God intended when He called this nation into existence.

(A knowledge of the preceding facts will reveal not only truths surrounding Christ’s present and future ministries but also truths surrounding Israel’s present and future status as a nation in the Middle East.  Christ is still ministering in the heavenly sanctuary, with the antitype of the death of the high priest yet to occur; and Israel still remains in unbelief.  Consequently, Israel — being unable to presently avail herself of the paid ransom — will not only continue in unbelief, but the nation, as well, cannot return to the land of her possession during the present day and time.

To equate the present restoration of a remnant of the descendants of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob to the land of Israel with the fulfillment of any of the Old Testament prophecies dealing with Israel’s restoration to this land [such as the vision of the valley of dry bones in Ezekiel 37] is to ignore the fact that Israel is the slayer.  And this is an established biblical fact that cannot be ignored.

The present restoration of a remnant to the land can have nothing whatsoever to do with the fulfillment of any of the numerous Old Testament prophecies surrounding Israel’s restoration.  The fulfillment [after any fashion] of such promises today, from a biblical standpoint, is impossible, for Christ is still ministering after the order of Aaron in the heavenly sanctuary.

Thus, the ransom that Christ paid to effect Israel’s cleansing cannot presently be used;  nor can Israel return to the land of her possession today.  These things are reserved for the seventh day, the Lord’s Day, which lies just ahead.

However, a remnant must be present in the land immediately preceding the end of Man’s Day for certain prophecies surrounding Israel and the nations to be fulfilled, though the existence of this remnant has nothing to do with the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies surrounding Israel’s restoration.  Thus, the existence of the nation of Israel in the land today [consisting of almost 6,000,000 Jews] is neither the beginning of nor a partial fulfillment of any Old Testament prophecy surrounding Israel’s restoration to the land.  Rather, this remnant in the land is the result of a Zionistic work among the Jews during about the past century, and this remnant constitutes the existence of an end-time Israeli nation that must be present in the land in order to bring about the fulfillment of numerous Old Testament prophecies surrounding Israel and the nations immediately preceding Christ’s return.

In this respect, the remnant in the land today constitutes the nation that will shortly make the seven-year covenant with Antichrist.  And this remnant will, in turn, later be uprooted from the land [something that will never occur after the Jewish people have been re-gathered to the land in fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy (cf. Isaiah 2:1-4; Jeremiah 32:37-44; Ezekiel 37:19-28; 39:25-29; Joel 2:27-32; Micah 4:1-7)].

In the middle of the Tribulation, when Antichrist breaks his covenant with Israel, the nation of Israel, as we know it today, will be uprooted from their land; and the Jews dwelling in the land at that time, who do not escape to places of safety out among the nations, or the place that God will have specially prepared for them in the mountainous or desert terrain of the land [Matthew 24:16-20; Revelation 12:6, 14], will either be slain or be sold as slaves throughout the Gentile world [cf. Joel 3:6; Luke 21:20-24; Revelation 11:2].

During the last half of the Tribulation there will be no Jewish nation in the Middle East.  Rather, Jerusalem, the capital of Jewry, will be “trodden down of the Gentiles” until the full end of Daniel’s Seventy-Week prophecy, which marks the end of “the times of the Gentiles” [cf. Daniel 9:24-27; Luke 21:24; Revelation 11:2].

During this time, the entire world — particularly the center of Antichrist’s kingdom in the Middle East [including the land of Israel as we know it today] — will become like Nazi Germany during the final six years of the Third Reich [1939-1945].  And when the Holocaust of that coming day reaches its darkest hour, Messiah will return, and He Himself will affect the prophesied re-gathering of the nation [Matthew 24:15-31; Luke 21:20-27].

Christ must first complete His present ministry in the sanctuary and return to earth as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek.  Only then can Israel avail herself of the ransom and return to the land of her possession.)

My Son, a Priest

There are two quotations from the Old Testament in Hebrews 5:5-6, and both are Messianic in their scope of fulfillment.  There is first the quotation from Psalm 2:7,

You are My Son, today I have begotten You. (Hebrews 5:5)

And then there is the quotation from Psalm 110:4,

You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. (Hebrews 5:6)

These two quotations are used together, referring to one and the same time.  They refer to that time in the Psalm 2 when God states,

Yet I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion. (Psalm 2:6)

And they refer to that time in Psalm 110 when God states,

The LORD shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies! (Psalm 110:2)

Both quotations in Hebrews are from Messianic passages in the Old Testament, leaving no room to question the time of their fulfillment.  “Zion” is Jerusalem (Psalm 76:2; 126:1; Isaiah 1:26-27), and the Old Testament quotations in Hebrews 5:5-6 simply refer to that future day when Christ will exercise His kingly office in this city, on the earth.

1)  Psalm 2:7

Psalm 2:7 is quoted three places in the New Testament.  It is quoted by Luke in Acts 13:33, and it is quoted twice by the writer of Hebrews (Hebrews 1:5; 5:5).

The words, “You are My Son,” form an allusion to 2 Samuel 7:14 in the Davidic covenant:  “I will be His father, and he shall be My son . . . .”

And to view the Psalm 2 from the perspective of the Davidic covenant, this Psalm reveals the fulfillment of God’s threefold promise to David in 2 Samuel 7:12-13:

1) David was to have a Son (2 Samuel 7:12).

2) David’s Son was to sit on his throne (2 Samuel 7:12-13).

3) The kingdom, under this Son’s reign, was to be established forever (2 Samuel 7:13).

Accordingly, God’s promise to David, rather than being fulfilled through his son, Solomon, finds its fulfillment through his greater Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

1) He is the One to whom God will give “the throne of his father David.”

2) He is the One who will “reign over the house of Jacob forever.”

3) He is the One who will possess a kingdom of which “there shall be no end” (Luke 1:31-33).

This is exactly what is in view in Acts 13:33, where Psalm 2:7 is quoted for the first time in the New Testament.  Acts 13:34 goes on to state, “And that He raised Him from the dead . . . .”  That is, concerning Jesus one day occupying the throne of David and reigning over the house of Jacob, fulfilling God’s promises in the Davidic covenant, God raised Him from the dead.  And the same verse concludes with the statement, “I will give you the sure mercies of David [lit., ‘I will give you the holy things of David’ (which, contextually, can only be a reference to things surrounding the Davidic covenant)].”

Psalm 2:7 must likewise be looked upon as Messianic in its two usages in the book of Hebrews.  In the chapter one the verse comprises one of seven Messianic quotations that make up most of the chapter, and it is used here in connection with the parallel quotation from the Davidic covenant in 2 Samuel 7:14 (Psalm 2:5).  And in Hebrews chapter five the verse is used in connection with that future time when Christ will come forth from the sanctuary and exercise the Melchizedek priesthood (Hebrews 5:5-6). 

2)  Psalm 110:4

Melchizedek is mentioned eleven times in Scripture — two times in the Old Testament (Genesis 14:18; Psalm 110:4) and nine times in the book of Hebrews (Hebrews 5-7).  And the manner in which Melchizedek is presented in the Old Testament will govern the manner in which he must be viewed in the book of Hebrews.

Melchizedek first appears in Scripture when Abraham was returning from the battle of the kings (Genesis 14:18-19).  Melchizedek was “king of Salem [‘king of Jerusalem’ (Psalm 76:2)]” and “priest of the Most High God” (Genesis 14:18).  Thus, he was a king-priest in Jerusalem.

Meeting Abraham, following the battle of the kings, he brought forth bread and wine and blessed Abraham, saying,

Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth” (Genesis 14:18-19).

It is evident that Melchizedek’s actions in the type during the days of Abraham were Messianic in their scope of fulfillment in the antitype.  Immediately prior to Christ’s death at Calvary, He partook of the Passover with His disciples (Matthew 26:19ff).  And at the end of the Passover feast — after Jesus had participated with His disciples in the breaking of bread and drinking from the cup, along with His instructions to them concerning both (Matthew 26:26-28) — Jesus said, 

But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom” (Matthew 26:29).

This could only be an allusion to one thing — that future day when Christ will come forth in the antitype of Melchizedek as he is presented in Genesis 14:18-19, with bread and wine to bless Abraham and his descendants, both heavenly and earthly (cf. Genesis 22:17-18).  And this is an event that will occur following the battle of the kings (cf. Revelation 19:17-21).

Psalm 110, where Melchizedek is referred to the only other time in the entire Old Testament, as previously seen, is also Messianic in its scope of fulfillment.  It must be, for this is the way Melchizedek is presented in Genesis, and there can be no change when one comes to the book of Psalms.

The Son is told to sit on the Father’s right hand until such a time as His enemies are made His “footstool” (Psalm 110:1).  Then, after His enemies have been made His footstool, He is going to rule in the midst” of His enemies (Psalm 110:2).  He is going to “strike through kings” and “judge among the heathen [Gentiles]” in that coming day of His “power” (Psalm 110:3, 5-6), a day when He will be revealed as the great King-Priest in Jerusalem, “after the order of Melchizedek” (Psalm 110:4).

Genesis 14 and Psalm 110 must be understood in the light of one another (actually, Psalm 110 draws from Genesis 14), and Hebrews 5-7 must be understood in the light of both Old Testament references.  Thus, all eleven references to Melchizedek in Scripture can only be looked upon after one fashion — as Messianic in their scope of fulfillment.

(Concerning the absence of the mention of a sanctuary and shed blood in connection with Melchizedek, this would not be the case as matters are seen in the antitype, in that future day, when Christ comes forth as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek and a new covenant is made with the House of Israel.  Covenants are, at times, associated with death and shed blood in Scripture, as is the new covenant [cf. Genesis 15:9-21; Jeremiah 34:18; Matthew 26:28].  There is an allusion to this in Hebrews 7:21-22:

The LORD has sworn and will not relent, “You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”

by so much more Jesus has become a surety of a better covenant.

Then, when Christ deals with Israel in relation to sin at the time of His return [fulfilling that which is foreshadowed by events on the Day of Atonement], of necessity, death and shed blood and a sanctuary, will have to be in view.  And also, of necessity, Jesus will have to be exercising the Melchizedek priesthood at this time.

Thus, in the preceding respect, one could find death and shed blood, along with a sanctuary, associated with the Melchizedek priesthood.  But that is strictly future, it involves Israel alone, and it has nothing to do with Christ’s present priestly ministry on behalf of Christians.)
Chapter Two
Author of Eternal Salvation

Who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard because of His godly fear,

though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things that He suffered.

And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him. (Hebrews 5:7-9).

Christ, during what the writer of Hebrews calls, “the days of His flesh,” passed through certain human experiences.  “Wisdom and stature,” in connection with Christ’s growth from childhood to manhood, were part of these experiences (Luke 2:52);  testing, emotions, hunger, sufferings, and numerous other things that man experiences were, as well, things that Christ also experienced (Luke 4:1-13; 22:44; John 11:35; Hebrews 4:15; 5:7-8).

One thing above all else must be kept in mind when viewing these human experiences that Christ passed through.  Christ’s deity, during His earthly ministry, cannot be separated from His humanity.  That is, during this time, Christ was not God and Man; rather, He was the God-Man.  At no time, beginning with the incarnation, can one be separated from the other.

The question thus becomes: How could Christ increase in “wisdom and stature,” be “tempted,” learn “obedience,” or pass through certain other human experiences after a similar fashion if He was, at the same time, fully God?  Or, to ask the question another way: How could Christ, being God Himself, and omniscient, increase in or learn human traits and characteristics by becoming a member of the human race that He Himself had brought into existence?

After all, at the age of twelve, He entered into the Temple in Jerusalem and confounded the “teachers” (KJV: “doctors”) with His wisdom and understanding of matters; and, at the same time, He exhibited knowledge of that which He must accomplish completely outside Joseph and Mary’s understanding of the matter (Luke 2:41-50).  Then, on numerous occasions, He either exercised His deity or could have exercised it (Matthew 26:53; Mark 1:24-26; Luke 22:61; John 1:48; 11:25, 43-44; 18:5-6).

Probably the most graphic testimony that Scripture presents pertaining to the inseparability of Christ’s humanity from His deity surrounds the events of Calvary and the empty tomb.

It was the blood of God that was shed at Calvary, the same blood that is presently on the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies of the heavenly tabernacle today (cf. Acts 20:28; Hebrews 9:11-12).  And Jesus raised Himself from the dead, restoring life to the Temple of God (John 2:18-21).

The day of the Passover, 33 A.D., was the day God died; and not only did the Son raise Himself, but God the Father raised Him (Romans 10:9), and the Spirit raised Him (Romans 8:11).  This would have had to be the case, for an inseparable identification exists between the members of the Godhead.

Jesus, prior to His crucifixion, referred to His “body” as the Temple of God:

Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

. . . He was speaking of the temple of His body” (John 2:19, 21 [19b]).

There are two Greek words used for “Temple” in the New Testament — hieron and naos.  The former refers, not to the Temple proper, but to the outer porches, porticoes, etc.  It is the latter word that refers to the Temple proper, with its innermost place, the Holy of Holies where God Himself dwelled among His people for over eight centuries during Old Testament days.

The Glory of the Lord (the manifestation of God among His people) though had departed from the Holy of Holies long before Christ was upon earth.  It departed at the time God allowed His people to be taken captive into Babylon (Ezekiel 10:4, 18; 11:22-23), about six centuries prior to Christ’s first appearance.  And during the entire Times of the Gentiles — though a Temple was built following the Babylonian captivity (constructed during the days of Zerubbabel and rebuilt during the days of Herod), and another will be built during the days of Antichrist — there neither has been nor will be the Deity within the Jewish Temple.  The Glory of the Lord will return to the Temple only after the Times of the Gentiles has run its course, Christ returns, and the millennial Temple has been brought into existence (Ezekiel 43:2-5).

The Greek word used relative to the body of Christ being the Temple of God is naos, not hieron.  That is, this was a structure in which the Deity dwelled.  Christ was “the Word,” who “was God,” who “was made flesh, and dwelt [lit., ‘tabernacled’] among us” (John 1:1-3, 14).

(Different words are used in the Greek text for verbs translated the same in the English text of John 1:1-14.  The verb used in John 1:1-2 — “In the beginning was the Word . . . .” — is a verb of being and has no reference to time in relation to a beginning or an end.  Also, there is no article before “beginning” in the Greek text.  The thought is simply, “In beginning [there are different beginnings in Scripture (for the earth, angels, man, etc.)] the Word existed without reference to a beginning or an end [for the Word has neither] . . . .”

Then in John 1:14 different verb is used, which has reference to a definite time of beginning — “And the Word was made [‘became’] flesh . . . .”  There was a point in time when the eternal Word “became flesh, and tabernacled among us,” though the incarnation wrought no change relative to the way in which the Word is presented prior to this time in verses one and two.  The Word was just as much fully God following the incarnation as before the incarnation.)

Thus, the true Tabernacle or Temple in Israel during the days Christ was on earth and was not the earthly structure on the Temple Mount (though Christ referred to this structure as, “My house” [Matthew 21:13]) but “the Wordwho became flesh and tabernacled among His people.  It was this individual — God Himself, tabernacling among His people — that the priests of the earthly tabernacle (the tabernacle that no longer housed the Deity) reviled, mistreated, and persuaded the multitude that they should call for His crucifixion (Matthew 26:59ff; John 19:6ff).

A verse often misunderstood, though one of the clearest and strongest verses in Scripture relative to Christ’s deity is Mark 13:32:

But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

Seemingly, the way that the text is structured, Christ separated Himself from the Father and stated that He, like fallen man, did not know certain things that the Father alone knew.  However, such was not the case at all.

The text clearly states that the Father alone had knowledge of the things involved, but the simple fact of the matter is that the Father and Son were “one” (John 10:30 [cf. John 10:33]; John 14:9).  The Son, thus, had to, of necessity, possess the same knowledge, for He was then, and remains today, God of very God (cf. Colossians 1:9).

The problem lies in the English translation of Mark 13:32; and a proper translation will not only reveal that the Son of Man was the God-Man but it will also reveal the inseparability of His humanity from His deity.  The Son of Man was, and remains today, fully God as well as fully Man.

The word “but” in the latter part of Mark 13:32 is a translation of the Greek words, ei me.  Literally translated, these two words mean, “if not,” or “except.”  What Jesus said was that He couldn’t know “that day and that hour” if He were not the Father, for the Father alone knew.

Archbishop Trench, one of the great authorities from a past generation on word studies in the Greek text, translated this verse,

“If I were not God as well as Man, even I would not know the day or the hour.”

And this appears to capture the exact thought of the passage about as well as any English translation, for not only is the translation true to the text but it is true to the testimony of the whole of Scripture.

Thus, returning to the human experiences that Christ passed through, one thing above all else must be kept in mind: At no point in Christ’s earthly existence — from the incarnation to the ascension — can His deity be separated from His humanity.  He was the God-Man.  He was just as much fully God as He was fully Man; and from the point of the incarnation forward the matter is as stated in Hebrews 13:8,

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Consequently, not only must the passages in Luke 2:52 and Hebrews 4:15; 5:7-9 be understood in this light but any part of Scripture touching on Christ’s humanity must be understood after the same fashion.

Sufferings, Death

During events surrounding Christ’s crucifixion, He suffered like no other man could possibly suffer, for, along with His physical sufferings, He suffered from a spiritual standpoint after a fashion that it was impossible for anyone else to suffer.  And the latter sufferings, according to Scripture, were far worse than the former.

1) Physical Sufferings

Insofar as His physical sufferings were concerned, the Prophet Isaiah, over seven centuries before this time, stated,

. . . His visage was marred more than any man, and His form more than the sons of men. (Isaiah 52:14)

He was spat upon and beaten by the Jewish religious leaders; then He was turned over to Pilate, who, after dealing with Him a second time, had Him “scourged” and “delivered” into the hands of his soldiers to be crucified; and the Roman soldiers, following His scourging, arrayed Him as a pseudo King and repeatedly mocked Him, spat on Him, and struck Him on the head with what was apparently a hard bamboo-like reed (Matthew 26:67; 27:26-31)

A literal rendering of Isaiah 52:14 would reveal that His physical appearance would be so altered by the time He was placed on the Cross that it would appear to actually not be that of a man; and the same verse states that because of His mutilated physical appearance many would be “astonished” when they looked upon the One about to be crucified.

Actually, Isaiah 52:14 is set between two sections of Scripture dealing with that future day when Christ rules and reigns over the earth (Isaiah 52:1-13, 15).  Verses one through thirteen introduce the subject (His coming day of glory and exaltation), verse fourteen moves the reader back 2,000 years in time (referring to His suffering and humiliation), and then verse fifteen moves the reader forward once again to that time introduced in verses one through thirteen.

A parallel is shown between that which would occur at the two advents of Christ.  The degree of His suffering and humiliation would parallel, in an opposite sense, the degree of His glory and exaltation.  This is why the writer of Hebrews, speaking of Christ, could state,

. . . who for the joy that was set before Him [the day when He would rule and reign over the earth] endured the cross, despising the shame . . . . (Hebrews 12:2).

In that coming day the same scenes that witnessed His suffering and humiliation are going to witness His glory and exaltation.  He is going to be “exalted,” “judge between the nations,” and “rebuke many people” (Isaiah 2:2-4; 52:13).  In that day,

. . . kings shall shut their mouths at Him; for what had not been told them they shall see, and what they had not heard they shall consider.” (Isaiah 52:15)

Those who look upon Him in that coming day will once again be “astonished,” though after a different fashion, for His coming glory and exaltation must, in an opposite sense, parallel His past suffering and humiliation.  And, as His physical appearance resulted in the people being astonished in the past, so will His physical appearance result in the people being astonished in that future day.

In the past Christ appeared apart from His Glory.  He possessed a body like unto the body that man possesses today, void of the covering of Glory in which man was enswathed prior to the fall.  It was in this body that He suffered, bled, and died; it was in this body that the very God of the universe, in the person of His Son, appeared in humiliation and shame on behalf of sinful man; and it was in this body, in the person of His Son, that God Himself was so beaten that people looked upon Him in astonishment.

But in that coming day, matters will be just the opposite.  Though Christ will return in the same body that He has possessed since the incarnation, it will no longer be void of the covering of Glory.  Nor will He return as the suffering “Lamb of God.”  All of this will be past.  In that coming day He will return as the conquering “Lion of the tribe of Judah.”  And when men see Him in that day, they will look upon One whose “countenance” is “as the sun shining in its strength” (cf. Revelation 1:16; 19:11ff).  And man will once again be astonished.

(Note that Isaiah 53, set between two Messianic chapters (Isaiah 52; 54), forms Israel’s confession as the nation goes forth as God’s witness to the Gentile nations of the earth during the Messianic Era.)

Who has believed our [Israel’s] report? . . .

. . . He was wounded for our [Israel’s] transgressions, He was bruised for our [Israel’s] iniquities . . . and by His stripes we [the Jewish people] are healed. (Isaiah 53:1, 5 [1a]; cf. Isaiah 1:5-6, 25-2:5)

2) Spiritual Sufferings

Christ’s spiritual sufferings began in the Garden, continued with His being arrayed as a pseudo King (twice [first by Herod, then by the Roman soldiers]), and terminated with the Father turning away from the Son while He hung upon the Cross.

In the Garden, anticipating that which lay ahead, Christ requested three times of the Father that “this cup” might pass from Him;  but the prayer was always followed by the statement, “nevertheless not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39, 42, 44).

The “cup” that Jesus had to drink should be understood in the light of His present spiritual sufferings.  Drinking this cup could have no reference to the events of Calvary per se, for Jesus — in view of the purpose for man’s creation in the beginning and the necessity for redemption’s price being paid — could never have made such a request.  But the sufferings that Jesus began to endure in the Garden, anticipating the events of Calvary, were another matter.

Jesus requested of the Father that these sufferings be allowed to pass, but such was not to be.  And, resultantly,

And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” (Luke 22:44)

Then, shortly thereafter, following Jesus being delivered to Pilate by the Jewish religious leaders, the nation of Israel sank to a new low.  Pilate, after interrogating Jesus, sending Him to Herod, and having Him returned by Herod, sought to release Jesus; but the Jewish religious leaders persuaded the multitude to ask for the release of Barabbas (an insurrectionist, robber, and murderer) instead and insist on Jesus’ crucifixion.

Pilate, seeing that “he could prevail nothing,” finally “gave sentence that it should be as they required.”  He released Barabbas and had Jesus scourged.  And following the scourging the Roman soldiers arrayed Jesus as a pseudo King, which, along with the humiliation, involved further beatings.

Then Pilate, making one last attempt to save Jesus from crucifixion, brought Him forth in the mutilated condition described in Isaiah 52:14 and presented Him to “the chief priests and the rulers and the people” with the words,

Behold your King! (John 19:14b)

But the Jewish people who were present would still have nothing to do with Christ.  They cried out to Pilate, “Away with Him, away with Him! Crucify Him!”  Then, in response to Pilate’s question: “Shall I crucify your King?” the chief priests climaxed the whole matter by crying out,

We have no king but Caesar! (John 19:15b)

Jesus was then led away to be crucified (Matthew 27:15-31; Mark 15:7-20; Luke 23:13-26; John 18:39-19:16).

It was through all of this, which preceded the Cross that Jesus not only suffered physically but spiritually as well.  The Jewish religious leaders had persuaded the people to ask for the release of a notorious imprisoned criminal rather than Israel’s King; then Christ was again arrayed and mocked as a pseudo King.  He had previously been arrayed, treated with contempt, and mocked in Herod’s presence; but this time, following His arrayal, Christ was not only repeatedly mocked but He was also repeatedly spat upon and beaten (cf. Matthew 27:26-31; Mark 15:16-20; Luke 23:6-11).

And to bring the whole matter to a close, preceding the crucifixion (where mocking and expressions of contempt continued with Christ hanging on the Cross [Mark 15:24-32]), the Jewish religious leaders echoed the ultimate insult when Pilate brought Jesus forth to them.  They not only rejected their true King, calling for His crucifixion, but they pledged allegiance to a pagan Gentile king.

(The Jewish religious leaders, through this act, placed the nation of Israel in a position diametrically opposed to the reason for the nation’s very existence.  Israel had been called into existence — as God’s firstborn son — to be the ruling nation on earth, within a theocracy.  Israel was to be the nation through which God would rule and bless all the Gentile nations [cf. Genesis 12:1-3; 22:17-18; Exodus 4:22-23; 19:5-6; Deuteronomy 7:6].

However, the religious leaders in Israel had placed the nation in subjection to a pagan Gentile power by rejecting their true King and, in His stead, claiming allegiance to a pagan Gentile king.  Such an act not only removed the One who must reside in Israel’s midst at the time these blessings would be realized [cf. Joel 2:27-32; Acts 2:16-21; 3:14-15, 19-23; 7:54-56] — affixing Him to the Cross rather than seeing Him seated on the Throne — but it also placed both nations in completely opposite positions from the respective positions that they were to occupy for their well-being in God’s plans and purposes, proving detrimental to both nations [blessings withheld for both, along with further degradation for Israel].)

Then at Calvary there was both a climax and conclusion to Christ’s physical and spiritual sufferings.  He had already been physically beaten to the point that those who looked upon Him were astonished, but now He must suffer something far worse.  He must now suffer after an entirely different fashion.  He must now take upon Himself the sins of the world, and He must perform this act alone.

Christ took upon Himself the sins of the world during the last three of the six hours He hung on the Cross.  God caused darkness to envelop all the land, and He then turned away from His Son while redemption’s price was being paid.  And this resulted in the cry from the Cross, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me” (Matthew 27:45-46)?

(Though the Father turned from the Son at this point, leaving the Son to act alone, the Son remained just as much fully God as He had always been and would always be; and, resultantly, it was the blood of God that was shed at Calvary.)

But at the end of those three hours it was all over.  The Son’s work of redemption had been accomplished.  God had “laid on Him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6); and the Son could then cry out, “It is finished [lit., ‘It has been finished’]” (John 19:30).

And that is the way matters stand today.  Because of the Son’s finished work, a finished salvation is available for fallen man.  God’s Son has paid the price, and all man has to do — all he can do — is receive that which has already been accomplished on his behalf.

A Barabbas can be set free, for the Just One has died in his stead.

(The same perfect tense is used in the Greek text relative to both Christ’s finished work and man’s salvation.  The perfect tense refers to action completed in past time, with the results of that action existing during present time in a finished state.  This is the tense used in John 19:30, recording Christ’s cry from the Cross, “It has been finished”;  and this is the tense used in Ephesians 2:8, referring to man’s salvation by grace through faith:  “For by grace you are saved [lit., ‘you have been saved’] through faith . . . .”

Both acts involve, in their entirety, divinely finished work;  the latter work [man’s salvation] is based on the former [Christ’s work at Calvary];  and insofar as the state of redeemed man is concerned, one work is just as finished, complete, and secure as the other.  Refer to the author’s book, Salvation by Grace through Faith BOOK, in this site.)

Being Made Perfect

Through suffering (Hebrews 4:15; 5:7-8), Christ was brought to a position that Scripture calls, “being made perfect” (Hebrews 4:9 KJV), something that the writer had already stated in an earlier passage in the book (Hebrews 2:10).  This though was not perfection in the sense of the way the word is often used and understood today.  Rather the word is used in this passage referring to an “end result,” “goal,” or “completeness” of that which is in view.

Perfect” is the translation of the Greek word, teleioo, which means, “bring to an end,” “bring to its goal,” “bring to completeness.”  Christ, by passing through these sufferings, as a Man, was brought into a position that He had not previously occupied.

In one sense of the word, Christ was brought into this position through learning obedience, resulting from sufferings that He experienced; but, in another sense of the word, such an act was impossible.

Hebrews 5:8 states that Christ learned “obedience by the things which He suffered.”

However, John 7:15 states that Christ possessed knowledge about certain matters, “having never learned” (cf. John 7:16).  The Greek word translated “learned” is the same in both verses, the word manthano.  But, the thought behind what is meant by learning in the two verses is not the same.  It can’t be.

The omniscient One has perfect knowledge apart from life’s experiences.  But, on the other hand, Scripture states that the same omniscient Person learned through life’s experiences.  How can one be reconciled with the other?

The learning is within the framework of Christ personally, as a Man, passing through the same experiences as man.  He personally experienced, as a Man, that which man experiences.  In the words of Hebrews 4:14-15 [14b],

. . . let us hold fast our confession.

For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without [apart from] sin.

However, this still leaves unaddressed the issue of how the omniscient God, as Son, could learn obedience through suffering.  But the answer to the matter is really very simple:

Christ learned through personal experience that which He already knew in the same sense that God learns through angelic “watchers” who report to Him at scheduled times that which He already knows (cf. Daniel 4:17, 23-25).  Or, as in the case of the cities of the plain during Abraham’s day, God came down to see for Himself that which the watchers had previously told Him.  This was something that He not only knew about before the matter was revealed by the watchers but also something that He didn’t need to see in order to know if the matter was “altogether according to the cry of it” (Genesis 18:20-21).

This is simply the way Scripture reveals God’s intervention in the affairs of man.  He is, at times, revealed as learning, by personal intervention, that which He already knows.

As in the case of the cities of the plain, God is seen as personally coming down to view matters Himself before allowing the cities to be destroyed; and, in the person of His Son, as a Man, God has personally passed through certain experiences that man passes through, attributing to Himself the same qualities that man acquires by passing through these experiences.

And God has done this for revealed, related purposes, with one such purpose being revealed in Hebrews 5:7-9.  By learning obedience by the things which He suffered,” matters have been brought to a goal.  Christ has become “the Author [‘source’] of eternal salvation” unto all those who, in turn, “obey Him,” which must, of necessity, also involve suffering.

It is suffering on His part and subsequent suffering on our part; and as the former resulted in learning obedience, so must the latter.  As stated in 1 Peter 2:21,

. . . Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps.”

Eternal Salvation, Obedience

The word “eternal” in the English text is misleading.  Those for whom Christ is the source of salvation (Christians) already possess eternal salvation; and, beyond that, this salvation was not acquired through obedience to Christ, as in the text.  Rather, it was acquired through believing on the Lord Jesus Christ (John 3:16).

Obedience to Christ, resulting from suffering, can come into view only following belief in Christ (resulting in the one believing coming into possession of eternal salvation), never before.  Only the saved have “passed from death to life” and are in a position to suffer and subsequently obey.  The unsaved are still “dead in trespasses and sins” (John 5:24; Ephesians 2:1).

1) Eternal

The Greek language, from which our English versions have been translated, does not contain a word for “eternal.”  A person using the Greek language thinks in the sense of “ages,” or “long periods of time”; and the way this language is normally used in the New Testament to express “eternal,” apart from textual considerations, is through the use of the Greek words eis tous aionas ton aionon, meaning, “to [or, ‘with respect to’] the ages of the ages” (ref. Hebrews 13:21; 1 Peter 4:11; Revelation 1:6; 4:9-10 for several examples of places where these words are used, translated “forever and ever” in most versions).

Another less frequently used way to express “eternal” in the Greek New Testament, apart from textual considerations, is through the use of a shortened form of the preceding — eis tous aionas, meaning “to [or, ‘with respect to’] the ages” (ref. Romans 9:5; 11:36; 2 Corinthians 11:31; Hebrews 13:8 for several examples of places where these words are used, translated “forever” in most versions).

The word from the Greek text translated “eternal” in Hebrews 5:9 is aionios.  This is the adjective equivalent of the noun aion, referred to in the preceding paragraph in its plural form to express “eternal.”  Aion means “an aeon [the word ‘aeon’ is derived from aion]” or “an era,” usually understood throughout the Greek New Testament as “an age.”

Aionios, the adjective equivalent of aion, is used seventy-one times in the Greek New Testament and has been indiscriminately translated “eternal” or “everlasting” in almost every instance in the various English versions.  This word though should be understood about thirty of these seventy-one times in the sense of “age-lasting” rather than “eternal”; and the occurrence in Hebrews 5:9 forms a case in point.

Several good examples of other places where aionios should be translated and understood as “age-lasting” are Galatians 6:8; 1 Timothy 6:12; Titus 1:2; 3:7.  These passages have to do with running the present race of the faith in view of one day realizing an inheritance in the kingdom, which is the hope set before Christians.

On the other hand, aionios can be understood in the sense of “eternal” if the text (and/or context) so indicates.  Several good examples of places where aionios should be so translated and understood are John 3:15-16, 36.  These passages have to do with life derived by faith in Christ because of His finished work at Calvary (cf. John 3:14), and the only type of life that can possibly be in view is “eternal life.”

Textual considerations must always be taken into account when properly translating and understanding aionios, for this is a word which can be used to imply either “age-lasting” or “eternal”; and it is used both ways numerous times in the New Testament.

Textual considerations in Hebrews 5:9 leave no room to question exactly how aionios should be understood and translated in this verse.  Life during the coming age, occupying a position as co-heir with Christ in that coming day, is what the book of Hebrews is about.

2) Suffering, Reigning

Suffering with or on behalf of Christ must precede reigning with Christ.  The latter cannot be realized apart from the former.  Such suffering is inseparably linked to obedience; and the text clearly states that Christ is the source of that future salvation “to all them that [presently] obey Him,” in the same respect that Christ is the source of presently possessed eternal salvation for all those who have (in the past) “believed” on Him.

1 Peter 1:11, relative to the saving of the soul (1 Peter 1:9-10), states,

Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ [lit., ‘the sufferings with respect to Christ’] and the glory that would follow.

The thought, contextually, is not at all that of Christ suffering.  Rather, the thought has to do with Christians suffering with respect to Christ’s sufferings, subsequently realizing the salvation of their souls through having a part in the glory that is to follow the sufferings.

This is the underlying thought behind the whole book of 1 Peter, expressed in so many words by the writer in 1 Peter 4:12-13:

Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you;

but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.

This is the “eternal [‘age-lasting’] glory” to which Christians have been called and in which Christians will be established after they “have suffered a while,” with obedience to Christ emanating from the sufferings (1 Peter 5:10).
Chapter Three
From Milk to Meat

Called by God as High Priest “according to the order of Melchizedek,”

of whom we have much to say, and hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing.

For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food [KJV: strong meat].

For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the Word of righteousness, for he is a babe.

But solid food [strong meat] belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. (Hebrews 5:10-14)

In Hebrews 5:1-6 there is a progression in thought from the present ministry of Christ in the sanctuary (after the order of Aaron) to the future ministry of Christ when He ascends the throne (after the order of Melchizedek).

Christ’s ministry in the sanctuary occurs in heaven, He is ministering on behalf of those destined to ascend the throne with Him, and this ministry will extend throughout the present dispensation.

At the conclusion of this ministry, Christ will come forth from the sanctuary as the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek; and His co-heirs, for whom He had previously ministered in the heavenly sanctuary, will then reign as kings and priests with Him.  Christ’s ministry, in that day, will occur from locations both in the heavens and on earth — in the heavens in relation to the earth (from the place where Satan and his angels presently rule) and upon the earth (from the land of Israel, among the Jewish people).

Thus, when Christ exercises the Melchizedek priesthood, He will have a dual reign.  He will sit on His own throne in the heavenly Jerusalem, ruling over the earth with His co-heirs, His consort queen; and He will also sit on David’s throne in the earthly Jerusalem in the midst of His people, Israel (the nation that will look upon the Pierced One and be saved at His second advent).  Occupying a dual reign of this nature, Christ will thus be a King-Priest in both the heavenly Jerusalem and the earthly Jerusalem.

This will be in perfect keeping with both heavenly and earthly promises associated with Abraham and his seed, first brought to light in connection with the first mention of Melchizedek in Scripture (Genesis 14:18-19).  Melchizedek blessed Abraham as “possessor of heaven and earth”; and the seed of Abraham, both heavenly and earthly, are to “possess the gate of [rule over] his enemies” (Genesis 22:17-18).

Beyond Genesis 12:1-3 in Scripture (i.e., beyond the call of Abraham and God’s promises to Abraham), all divine blessings that mankind receives must flow through Abraham and his seed (through Isaac, Jacob, and Jacob’s twelve sons and their descendants).  The nation of Israel is Abraham’s seed (through Jacob and his twelve sons).  Christ is Abraham’s Seed (through Isaac, Jacob, Judah, and David); and Christians, because of their position “in Christ,” are likewise Abraham’s seed (Galatians 3:16, 18, 29).

(Blessings of the preceding respect, through Abraham, actually go back to Shem, nine generations preceding Abraham [Genesis 9:25-27].  It is through Abraham, Shem’s descendant, that God brings to fruition His previously-introduced national work in this respect.

That is, a nation emanating from the loins of Abraham, which, following the creation in Jacob [Isaiah 43:1], and the subsequent adoption [Romans 9:4], could be seen as God’s firstborn son [Exodus 4:22-23], the nation in possession of the rights of primogeniture.)

Thus, during the coming age, Abraham’s Seed (Christ and His co-heirs) will rule from a heavenly sphere; and Abraham’s Seed (Christ and the nation of Israel) will rule from an earthly sphere.  And by means of this rule, from both spheres, the Gentile nations of the earth will be blessed, in fulfillment of Genesis 12:3; 14:19; 22:17-18.

Corresponding with the preceding, Hebrews 5:7-9 deals with a “salvation” in connection with the One who has been,

Called by God as High Priest according to the order of Melchizedek. (Hebrews 5:10; cf. Hebrews 5:6).

Predating His present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary (after the order of Aaron), Christ learned “obedience by the things that he suffered”; and with God bringing matters to a predetermined goal in the person of His Son through this process, Christ “became the Author [‘source’] of eternal salvation [‘salvation for the age’] to all them that obey Him” (Hebrews 5:8-9; ref. previous chapter in this book, Chapter 2).

This salvation is being extended to those for whom Christ is presently ministering in the heavenly sanctuary; and this salvation, contextually, has to do with that future time when Christ exercises the Melchizedek priesthood.  This is the salvation of the soul (cf. Hebrews 6:19-20; 10:36-39), and it has to do strictly with the “kings and priests” who will ascend the throne with the great King-Priest in that coming day (Revelation 4:10; 5:8-10).

(Note in Hebrews 5:6 that Christ is said to be “a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.”  “Forever” is a translation of the Greek words eis ton aiona, which appear twenty-nine times in the Greek New Testament.  Depending on the context, this expression can be understood either one of two ways — “with respect to the age [one age],” or “with respect to eternity [all the ages].”  It is used both ways in the Greek New Testament [cf. Matthew 21:19; 1 Peter 1:23].  The word aiona [the word aion in a different case form] is the singular noun form of the adjective aionios, which is also used both ways in the Greek text [ref. Chapter 2 in this book].

The four times this expression appears in the book of Hebrews relative to Christ being “a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek” [Hebrews 5:6; 6:20; 7:17, 21] should, contextually, be understood, as Christ being “a priest with respect to the age after the order of Melchizedek.”  The reference is to the coming age, that with which the book of Hebrews deals.

It might help to note a plural form of this same Greek expression in Hebrews 13:8 — eis tous aionas, “with respect to the ages.”  This verse, literally translated, would read, “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and with respect to the ages [all the future ages, i.e., forever’].”  Christ exercising a priesthood “after the order of Melchizedek” in Hebrews chapter five through seven has to do with one age, but Christ being unchangeable [for the Father and the Son are “one,” and God is unchangeable (Malachi 3:6)] has to do with all the ages — past, present, and future.

Christ will continue to reign beyond the Millennium, but matters as they will exist during the Millennium [one age] and beyond the Millennium [the succeeding unending ages, comprising eternity] will be quite different.  Christ’s reign “over the house of Jacob” [Luke 1:33], for example, is expressed in the Greek New Testament by the same words which appear in Hebrews 13:8, eis tous aionas [with respect to the ages]; but there will be differences between His reign “over the house of Jacob” during the Millennium and beyond the Millennium [note that this is the natural man, “Jacob,” not the spiritual man, “Israel.”  The nation will thus evidently dwell on earth in natural bodies of flesh, blood, and bones throughout not only the Millennium but the eternal ages that follow as well].

During the Millennium, Christ will occupy the role of King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek, seated on His own throne in the heavenly Jerusalem and on David’s throne in the earthly Jerusalem.  Conditions during that coming age will necessitate a King-Priest.  There will be sin, resulting death, etc.  And Christ must reign until He has “put all things under His feet.”  “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.”  And when “all things” have been brought under subjection, the kingdom will be “delivered up” to the Father “that God may be all in all” [lit., “that God may be all things in all,” i.e., that God may be all things in all of these things (1 Corinthians 15:24-28)].  This is actually the purpose for the Messianic Era — to rectify conditions in the one province in the kingdom of God where ruin, resulting from sin, ensued.

Then, when “all things” have been brought under subjection to the Son, and the Son has delivered “the kingdom” up to the Father, conditions will be quite different.  During the ages beyond the Millennium [the eternal ages] there will be “a new heaven and a new earth,” the New Jerusalem will be on the new earth [probably a much larger earth than presently exists, easily accommodating a city of this size as its capital (a city some 1,500 miles across and in height)], and God Himself will reside on the new earth [ruling the universe, from that time forth, from this new location rather than from the present location].

Sin and death, along with all the former associated things, will no longer exist.  And it will no longer be necessary for God to have a Priest dwelling among men to represent man to God and God to man [Revelation 21:22].  In that day, God “will dwell with them [with mankind, on the new earth], and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God” [Revelation 21:1ff].

And Christ, in that day, will continue to reign in a kingly position [which will be of a universal nature rather than restricted to this earth, as during the Millennium].  He will be seated on “the throne of God and of the Lamb [a throne from which universal rule will emanate]” [Revelation 22:1, 3], others will continue to occupy the throne with Him [Revelation 21:5], and Christ will also continue to occupy “the throne of His father David” [Luke 1:32-33].)

In Hebrews 5:11, the writer moves into a section of the book that has to do with spiritual growth, from immaturity to maturity.  The broader picture — moving beyond the Millennium — is really not what the writer had in mind though.  Rather, he concerns himself with the Messianic Era, not with the eternal ages beyond.  The broader picture has been presented only to show that Christ’s ministry “after the order of Melchizedek” is a ministry having to do with activity during one age alone, activity during the Messianic Era.

The writer of Hebrews, leading into his statements in Hebrews 5:11ff, had called attention to a progression in God’s economy from Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary (after the order of Aaron) to His future ministry (after the order of Melchizedek), crowned and seated on His own throne in the heavens and on David’s throne on earth (Hebrews 5:1-6).

Following this, the writer called attention to a salvation awaiting those presently obeying Christ (Hebrews 5:9); and this salvation, contextually, is to be realized during the coming age when Christ exercises the Melchizedek priesthood (Hebrews 5:6, 10).  It is to be realized by Christ’s co-heirs through/by their ascending the throne with Him (His own throne in the heavens, not David’s throne on earth).

It is this whole line of thought — centering on Melchizedek (Hebrews 5:10) — which the writer had in mind when he stated,

Of whom we have much to say, and hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. (Hebrews 5:11)

The writer wanted to say many things about that future day when Christ would be the great King-Priest “after the order of Melchizedek,” with others occupying positions as kings and priests alongside Him.

But, there was a problem . . . .

Many Things To Say

The writer of Hebrews could not just come out and begin relating to his readers various truths about Christ’s coming rule and reign over the earth “after the order of Melchizedek.”  This is what he wanted to do, but such was not possible; the recipients of this epistle lacked the necessary background in their spiritual growth to comprehend these truths (Hebrews 5:11-14).

Though they were on the foundation, which is Christ (1 Corinthians 3:11), they had not built upon this foundation after a fashion that would allow them to understand things about Christ drawn from type-antitype teachings concerning Melchizedek.

1) Hard to Explain

The things pertaining to Christ’s coming ministry “after the order of Melchizedek” were things “hard to explain.”  That is, these things were “difficult to be explained.”  And, to be able to grasp these things at all, it was absolutely necessary for a person to have grown enough spiritually that he could easily partake of solid food.

Things surrounding the antitype of the Melchizedek priesthood were not simply meat or solid food per se, but these things were said to be strong meat, food not easily digested and assimilated (Hebrews 5:12, 14 [there is a qualifying word used only here in the Greek text in connection with the word for “food” — stereos, meaning, “strong,” “solid,” “firm”]).  And these were, accordingly, not things for those still on the milk of the Word, which presented a problem for the writer of Hebrews.

Those to whom he was writing were still on milk and, correspondingly, “unskillful in the Word of righteousness.”  And not only did they need to be weaned from the milk but they also needed to be able to partake of solid food, after at least some fashion, before they could go on into and understand things surrounding the “strong meat” associated with Christ’s coming reign as King-Priestafter the order of Melchizedek.”

At the beginning of the Christian life a person can only partake of what Scripture calls, the “sincere [unadulterated, pure] milk of the Word” (cf. Hebrews 5:12-13; 1 Peter 2:2).  Milk is for “newborn babes,” whether in the spiritual or physical realm.  And, as in the physical realm where individuals grow physically and leave the milk for solid food, so must it be in the spiritual realm to assure proper growth.  A “newborn babe” is to begin on milk, but he is not to remain on milk indefinitely.  He is to grow spiritually; and through this growth he is to progressively, in what could only be considered a natural sense within this growth, gradually leave the milk and, in its place, partake of solid food.

The solid food that he first begins to partake of is more easily digested and assimilated than solid food that he may partake of after additional growth.  Growth is always progressive, and the object of growth is always the same.  Whether in the physical or spiritual, progressive proper growth always leads toward the same goal.  It always leads toward maturity, adulthood.

The whole panoramic picture of growth after this fashion is set forth in spiritual lessons drawn from events occurring during the six days of Genesis 1; and the purpose for this growth is intimately connected with that which occurred during the seventh day in Genesis 2.

Events occurring during the first three days set forth divisions.  Viewing the antitype, events occurring during the first day pertain to man’s presently possessed eternal salvation, wherein a division is established between the soul and the spirit (cf. Genesis 1:3-4; Hebrews 4:12).  Then, events occurring on days two and three (a division of waters from waters, the land from the water, etc.) picture the newborn babe in Christ learning divisions, distinctions in the Word — i.e., learning the basics — elementary teachings that would have to do essentially with milk rather than solid food.

It is only when one reaches that point in his spiritual growth depicted by events on days four through six that solid food of any real substance comes into the picture.  At this point in his understanding of Scripture he can begin to sink deep shafts down into the Word and mine its treasures.

He can begin to scale the heights or the depths in his spiritual understanding, as the birds are able to ascend into the heavens (day four), or as the marine creatures are able to plunge to the depths of the sea (day five); or he can begin to roam through the Word with ease in his spiritual understanding, as the giant land creatures are able to easily roam the earth (day six).

And all of this is for a purpose, which has to do with man, on the seventh day, realizing the reason for his existence:  “. . . let them have dominion.”

It has to do with man, on the seventh day (the seventh Millennium, the earth’s coming Sabbath, the Messianic Era), being placed in a position to exercise dominion with “the second Man,” “the last Adam” (cf. Genesis 1:26-2:3; 1 Corinthians 15:45, 47; Romans 11:29).

It has to do with the same thing that the writer of Hebrews had in mind when he referred to things that were “hard to explain [‘difficult to understand’]” (Hebrews 5:11).  He was writing to individuals who were, in their spiritual understanding, still in that period typified by events on days two and three in Genesis 1.

And this whole matter was not something that could be discussed with individuals still on the Milk of the Word.  This was strong meat, which, insofar as one’s spiritual growth and understanding were concerned, could fit only within the framework of that depicted by events on days four through six, for it had to do with the seventh day.

(For a detailed discussion of Genesis 1:1-2:3, as these verses pertain to the Christian life [birth, maturity, purpose] within a type-antitype framework, see the author’s book, From Egypt to Canaan BOOK, Chapters 5-8, in this site.)

2) Dull of Hearing

The word, “dull” in Hebrews 5:11 is the translation of a Greek word (nothros) that means, “lazy” or “careless.”  This is the same word also appearing in Hebrews 6:12, the only other occurrence of this word in the New Testament:

That you do not become sluggish [nothros, ‘lazy,’ ‘careless’], but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

The word nothros, as it is used in Hebrews 5, has to do with hearing and receiving the Word of God.  Those addressed had become “lazy,” “careless” in this respect.  Thus, the thought of sluggish in hearing or hard of hearing because of “laziness” or “carelessness” would best describe what is meant by the use of nothros in this section of Scripture.

Such an attitude toward the Word on their part would, in turn, have negative ramifications in two interrelated realms:

1) Their present spiritual growth.

2) The “end [goal]” of their faith, the salvation of their souls (James 1:21; 1 Peter 1:4-5, 9; cf. Hebrews 6:11-12, 19; 10:36-39).

Then a verb tense used in the Greek text shows that the individuals being addressed in Hebrews 5:11ff had not always been in this spiritual condition.  Rather, they had become this way.  The latter part of the verse should literally read,

. . . you have become sluggish in hearing [because of your carelessness, laziness (as it pertains to the reception of the Word of God and your spiritual growth)].

The same thought (their having become this way) is set forth in the latter part of Hebrews 5:12, which should literally read,

. . . you have become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat (solid food).

Thus, though the text deals with spiritual babes “in Christ,” it does not deal with spiritual babes who had never made a concerted effort to grow spiritually.  Rather, the text deals with Christians who, at one time, were receiving the Word and growing in a spiritual manner.  But something happened, which is very common in Christian circles today.  They had become “lazy” and “careless” in the spiritual realm of their lives; and, correspondingly, they had become “sluggish in hearing” the Word.

They had been saved long enough that they should, themselves, have been teaching the Word.  But such was not the case at all.  Rather, because of the spiritual condition in which they had become, they needed someone to take the Word and begin at the very basics of the Christian faith, teaching them once again things that they had previously been taught (Hebrews 5:12).

When for the Time

The whole area of spiritual growth from immaturity unto maturity, as it is presented in Hebrews chapters five and six, needs to be understood contextually.  Beginning on milk, being weaned from the milk, and partaking of solid food is not just moving from something relatively simple to something more complex in biblical doctrine.  Rather, proper spiritual growth involves moving from what could be termed the letter of the matter to the spirit of the matter (cf. 2 Corinthians 3:6-18).

When Christ, following His resurrection, instructed the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, He followed a certain procedure.  Christ began “at Moses and all the Prophets”; and, using the writings of Moses and all the Prophets, “He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.”  And by so doing, He showed these disciples, from the Old Testament Scriptures, a dual picture of Himself.  He showed them both the sufferings that He had just endured and His glory that would one day be revealed (Luke 24:25-27).

How did Christ do this?  How did He go to the Old Testament Scriptures and draw spiritual truths from these Scriptures that not only dealt with His past sufferings and future glory but that also resulted in the eyes of these two disciples being opened?

The answer is very simple.  Christ first went to the historic accounts in the writings of Moses, and then He went to the writings of other Prophets (the writings of the other Prophets could have been both historic accounts and/or prophetic accounts).  And using these Scriptures to arrive at teachings of this nature, Christ could only have followed one procedure:  He could only have dealt first with the letter of Old Testament revelation and then with the spirit of this revelation.

In this respect, to illustrate a basic distinction between “milk” and “meat” (solid food), the letter would have to do with the historicity of the account itself.  It would have to do with simply viewing the account as it is presented in Scripture from a literal, historic perspective.  And this is where one must begin, for no progress in spiritual growth can possibly be made until one first learns and understands basic things about that which is stated in the letter of the Word.

Then the spirit has to do with going beyond the simple historic account within the framework of the manner in which Scripture has been structured.  God has interwoven within the historic account an inexhaustible wealth of spiritual truth.  All Old Testament history is fraught with types and meaning, which, after some fashion, reflect on the person and work of Christ in His three-fold office.  Note in Luke 24:27 — “. . . in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (cf. 1 Corinthians 10:6, 11).

(One could take a lesson concerning proper biblical interpretation from Stephen’s address to the Jewish religious leaders in Acts 7.  Stephen began by calling attention to particular historic accounts in the Old Testament.  Then, account by account [Acts 7:2ff], once he had these Jewish religious leaders’ attention properly focused on the letter of the matter, he drew spiritual lessons from the historic accounts.  And, though the lessons were relatively simple, those whom he addressed got the message because Stephen opened the Scriptures to them after the fashion in which they had been written, moving from type to antitype.

And because Stephen opened the Scriptures to their understanding in this respect, allowing them to understand the proclaimed message, “they gnashed at him with their teeth” [an Eastern expression showing deep contempt (which not only showed their attitude toward Stephen but toward the proclaimed Word itself)].

Note that which a proper proclamation of the Word had done — they had been “cut to the heart,resulting in their action [Acts 7:54].

These religious leaders did exactly the same thing to Stephen that they had previously done to Christ, and for the same reason.  In a vain effort to do away with the whole of the matter, they killed Stephen [Acts 7:57-60].

And, relative to the preceding, the one daring to do this in Christian circles today might want to keep one thing in mind:

The religious leaders today, as the religious leaders during Stephen’s day, or during the previous time when Christ was upon earth, are not going to like that which the Word really has to say when the Word has been proclaimed after the manner in which it has been recorded and structured.)

The preceding is the evident manner of progression from milk to meat (solid food) in Hebrews 5:10ff.  First, attention is called to Melchizedek from the Old Testament Scriptures.  In this respect there is the brief historic account in Genesis 14.  Then there is the account of Messiah’s coming reign over the earth in Psalm 110, which draws from the type in Genesis.  And this is the extent of that which is directly stated about Melchizedek in the Old Testament.

The writer of Hebrews though went far beyond a reference to the historic account in Genesis and the use of this account in the Psalms when he stated that he had “many things” which he would like to relate concerning Melchizedek.

First, he had to have in mind understanding things about numerous other Old Testament Scriptures, for properly understanding the things surrounding Melchizedek would, of necessity, be contingent on understanding numerous other parts of the Old Testament.  Then, second, the writer had to have in mind going beyond the letter within one’s understanding.  And from that which is revealed in Hebrews chapter five, it is evident that going beyond the letter had to do with moving into the type-antitype relationship involved in the Melchizedek priesthood.

In other words, there are two corresponding things that one must do in order to properly understand the various things about Christ’s coming reign over the earth as the great King-Priest “after the order of Melchizedek”:

1) He must relate that which is taught in Genesis 14 and Psalm 110 to Old Testament revelation as a whole.

2) He must study the matter after the fashion in which the Old Testament has been structured, moving, in this respect, from type to antitype.

The account in Genesis chapter fourteen, in reality, comprises the heart of the whole matter.  This account, in the antitype, deals with that coming day when Christ, as the great King-Priest, will bless the descendants of Abraham (both heavenly and earthly); and these blessings will, in turn, flow out through the seed of Abraham to the Gentile nations of the earth.  In this respect, the whole account is fraught with meaning, which the writer of Hebrews called “solid food” (KJV: “strong meat”).

1) The Word of the Kingdom

Another feature about proper Christian growth in its true New Testament sense is the fact that solid food (meat) appears in passages having to do with Christ’s return and Christian accountability in relation to His return.  This can be seen quite graphically in two passages of Scripture — the text under discussion in Hebrews 5:11ff and the account of the Householder and His servant in Matthew 24:45-51.  And both are companion passages.

In Matthew 24:45-51, the command of the Householder to the servant placed over His house was to give those in the house “solid food (KJV: meat [same word as in Hebrews 5:12]) in due season” (Matthew 24:45).  And, textually, “solid food” has to do with a spiritual diet that will properly prepare the recipients for the Householder’s return.  Thus, “solid food,” as distinguished from “milk” in this passage and in Hebrews 5:11ff, has to do with the same thing.  It has to do with the things surrounding Christ’s return, the coming kingdom, and the place that will be occupied by both the great King-Priest and the kings and priests in that coming day.

The purpose for the entire present dispensation has to do with the coming kingdom.  The call is presently going forth concerning proffered positions as co-heirs with Christ during the coming age, and the present dispensation covers that period of time when fruit relating to the kingdom will be brought forth by those destined to comprise the co-heirs.

The faithful servant, dispensing “solid food (meat) in due season,” teaches those placed under his care about the Lord’s return and proffered positions in the kingdom, with a view to fruit bearing by both the one proclaiming the Word and the ones hearing the Word.  Then, at the time of the Lord’s return, fruit will be in evidence; and not only will the faithful servant be positioned as “ruler [co-heir with Christ in the kingdom],” but through his previous ministry in the house others will be brought into this position as well.

Should the servant become unfaithful though, the opposite will be true.  He will not teach those placed under his care about the Lord’s return and proffered positions in the kingdom.  Then, at the time of the Lord’s return, there will be no fruit; and not only will the unfaithful servant face severe chastisement, but those who had been placed under his care, failing to bring forth fruit (as a direct result of the unfaithful servant’s ministry), will find themselves in similar straits.

In this respect, an awesome responsibility falls on the shoulders of those whom the Lord has placed in positions of household responsibility to dispense “solid food (meat) in due season,” for faithfulness or unfaithfulness in properly carrying out their calling will have far-reaching ramifications, affecting not only them personally but others as well.  By a proper response to their calling, the salvation of not only their souls (lives) will be realized but the souls (lives) of others as well.  But through an improper response, the opposite will be true.

2) Beyond the Veil

The strict letter of the Word, apart from the spirit of the same Word, could, in a sense, be likened to an intrinsic view of the strict letter of the Law given to Israel through Moses.  In the words of Scripture, pertaining to the latter, “the letter kills . . . .”  And insofar as the understanding and interpretation of Scripture are concerned, there would be no difference in applying the same words to the former should the spirit be removed, for it is the spirit alone that “gives life” (2 Corinthians 3:6).

Because Israel viewed matters from the letter alone, the minds of the Jewish people were blinded, there was a veil over their eyes, and “until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament [‘old covenant’].”

But, there was/is a solution.  The veil could/can be “done away in Christ” (2 Corinthians 3:14-16).  And such was/is accomplished through simply looking beyond the letter.

That is exactly what occurred when Christ dealt with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus following His resurrection.  He opened the Old Testament Scriptures to their understanding.  That is, He carried them beyond the letter to the spirit.

Through looking beyond the letter in the Old Testament Scriptures, when they were later breaking bread, they saw their Messiah.  They then turned to the Lord, the veil was removed, and their eyes were opened (cf. Luke 24:25-31; 2 Corinthians 3:14-16).

And therein is Jewish evangelism presented in its true biblical form.  The evangel (the bearer of “good news”) must present the Jewish Messiah to the Jewish people from their own Old Testament Scriptures, through more than the letter.  He must move beyond the letter to the spirit.

Then, beyond the present day and time, the account in Luke chapter twenty-four forms a type of Israel’s future salvation.  The nation will one day turn their attention to the Lord, the veil will be removed, and the eyes of the Jewish people will be opened; and this will be the direct result of Messiah Himself, in their midst at the time of His return, opening the Old Testament Scriptures to their understanding.

And therein as well lies the simple secret that will allow anyone to understand the God-breathed Word given to man.  Study Scripture after the fashion in which it was written.  Know the letter, but don’t stop there.  Rather, look beyond the letter to the spirit, for this Word, unlike any other writing, is “spiritually discerned” (cf. John 16:12-15; 1 Corinthians 2:14).
Chapter Four
Leaving the Principles

Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,

of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.

And this we will do, if God permit (Hebrews 6:1-3).

Hebrews 6 continues the thought from Hebrews 5 having to do with Christians who had become lazy and careless in their spiritual lives, their spiritual growth (Hebrews 6:11).  They had been saved for a sufficient length of time that they should have been at a mature enough stage in their spiritual growth to be able to teach others.  But such was not the case at all.  Instead, they were still immature babes in Christ who needed to be taught themselves (Hebrews 6:12).

Actually, according to the text, they had gone backwards in their spiritual growth.  They, at one time, had been taught the elementary truths of the Word.  But, because of the lazy and careless manner in which they had been conducting their spiritual lives, they had “come to need milk and not solid food [KJV: strong meat]”; they were back at that point where they needed someone to again teach them “the first principles of the oracles of God.”

(Note that proper spiritual living and growth is inseparably connected with and dependent on one thing:  a proper diet of spiritual food that comes from one source alone — from the Word.

The reason for this is seen in the very nature of the Word.  The Word is inseparably identified with both the Father and His Son — “the Word was God,” “the Word became flesh” [John 1:1-2, 14].  The Word became flesh in the person of God’s Son, who was/is God manifested in the flesh.

Accordingly, anything connected with true spirituality [spiritual living, growth] cannot exist apart from the Word, for, existing apart from the Word would be synonymous with existing apart from the Father and His Son [along with the Holy Spirit].

Thus, it is either the Word or nothing.  No middle ground exists.)

The writer of Hebrews wanted to discuss things pertaining to the Melchizedek priesthood with those to whom he was writing, but dealing with them on this basis was completely out of the question.  Things surrounding the Melchizedek priesthood had to do with the “solid food [strong meat]” of the Word, which could be understood only by those who were “of full age [i.e., by mature Christians who had left the milk and had grown to adulthood in spiritual matters through a progressive intake, digestion, and assimilation of solid spiritual food.

These Christians still on milk, as every Christian “who partakes only of milk,” were “unskillful in the Word of righteousness.”  Their spiritual perception of matters was of such an immature nature — i.e., their spiritual senses were so insufficiently developed — that distinguishing between that which was correct and that which was incorrect in spiritual matters could only have presented a real problem for them (cf. Hebrews 6:13-14).

One must know and understand the Word of God, else a normal Christian life — one based on that which is taught in the Word — can never follow.  Thus, Hebrews chapter six begins with an exhortation to those in chapter five.  They were exhorted to leave the elementary teachings of the Word and begin building upon the foundation, with a view to spiritual maturity (Hebrews 6:1-2). 

Within the overall scope of that which is revealed in Hebrews chapters five through seven, the first two verses in chapter six form a connective.  These two verses, within the complete text, might be thought of as being similar to a conjunction in a sentence, for they connect that which has preceded with that which is about to follow.

Then, following the exhortation to go on to maturity, there is the statement,

And this we will do [we will go on unto maturity] if God permits [if God permits us to go on to maturity]. (Hebrews 6:3)

The heart of the third of the five major warnings in Hebrews appears next (Hebrews 6:4-6).

Then the writer uses an illustration pertaining to the warning, drawn from nature (Hebrews 6:7-8).

Next he deals with the “hope” that Christians possess and the “salvation” set before Christians, associated with this hope (Hebrews 6:9-19; cf. Titus 1:2; 2:13; 3:7; 1 Peter 3:15).

Then he moves full-circle back to the subject of Melchizedek, which had been introduced at the beginning of this section in chapter five (Hebrews 6:20-7:1ff).

The Foundation and Beyond

Hebrews 6:1-2 enumerates six different realms pertaining to a panorama of biblical doctrine.  And the things listed in these two verses must be understood contextually.  The context has to do with Christian maturity, for a revealed purpose; and that’s exactly where one is led when moving through the six different enumerated areas of biblical doctrine that are set forth in these opening two verses of the sixth chapter.

The six realms listed are introduced by the words,

Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection [maturity]. (Hebrews 6:1a)

The “principles” are the “first principles” from verse twelve of the preceding chapter (Hebrews 5:12).  These principles have to do with milk rather than solid food, and they are connected with the six enumerated areas of doctrine that immediately follow.

However, the six enumerated areas are not, themselves, part of the foundation.  Rather, it is elementary teachings connected with these six areas of doctrine that have to do with the foundation.  And, going beyond that, teachings connected with these same six areas can move far beyond foundational teachings.  Such teachings can and do — they must, of necessity — move into the realm of the “solid food” referred to in the previous chapter.

There is both the letter and the spirit of the matter, and this would apply to all six of the areas of doctrine listed in Hebrews 6:1-2.  The letter is one thing, but moving out into the spirit, — moving beyond the letter into the spirit in biblical teaching — is something entirely different (ref. Chapter 3 of this book [cf. 2 Corinthians 3:6-18]).  And this is exactly what those in Hebrews 5:11-14 were exhorted to do in Hebrews 6:1-2.

They were exhorted to leave the foundational teachings (teachings that would begin with the letter) and build upon the foundation (which would, of necessity, have to pertain to things beyond the letter, i.e., to the spirit).  And, whether letter or spirit, the various teachings would still be drawn from the six enumerated areas of biblical doctrine.

These six enumerated areas logically fall into three categories, with an interrelated set in each category.  The Spirit of God has listed them after the fashion in which they appear, in a specific order, for evident, particular reasons; and they should be studied with this overall thought in view, which fits the contextual subject matter perfectly.

Viewing the six areas of biblical doctrine after this fashion, there would be,

1) “repentance from dead works,” coupled with “faith toward God” (Hebrews 6:1b).

2) “doctrine of baptisms,” coupled with a “laying on of hands” (Hebrews 6:2a).

3) “resurrection of the dead,” coupled with “eternal judgment” (Hebrews 6:2b).

And, as will be demonstrated, moving progressively and orderly through the various biblical doctrines in view — seeing and understanding the letter and then the spirit of the matter — will result in a progressive orderly growth toward maturity.

1) The beginning point concerns repentance and faith.

2) The middle point has to do with cleansing and identification.

3) The terminal point centers on teachings concerning the end or goal of that which has preceded.

And within these three categories one will find a complete panorama of biblical truth, beginning with the milk of the Word and terminating with the solid food/strong meat of the Word.

1) Repentance, Faith

The first thing listed is “repentance from dead works”; but this cannot be separated from the second thing listed, which is “faith toward God.”  The term “dead works” would pertain to the works of a believer performed apart from faith.  Works, in order to be viewed as other than “dead works,” must emanate out of faith (James 2:14ff).

There must first be “faith toward God”; only then can works pleasing and acceptable to God follow, for, without faith, “it is impossible to please Him” (Hebrews 11:6).

There can be no acceptable works on the part of an unbeliever, for he cannot exercise “faith toward God” (he must first believe on the Son; only then will he find himself in a position to exercise faith toward the Father).

The believer, on the other hand, is in a position to exercise “faith toward God,” though he may or may not do so.

Should he do so, he can perform works acceptable and pleasing to God in his life (for faith will exist, from which such works can emanate); but should he not do so, he can no more perform works of this nature than the unbeliever can (for faith will not exist; and, resultantly, there can only be “dead works”).

The unbeliever remains “dead in trespasses and sins,” while the believer has “passed from death to life” (John 5:24; Ephesians 2:1).  Consequently, the believer, unlike the unbeliever, is in a position to perform acceptable works emanating out of faith (faithfulness).  But, as previously stated, he may or may not perform works of this nature, for he may or may not exercise “faith toward God.”

The term “repentance” has to do with a change of mind.  Essentially, looking at the matter from the other end, the Christian, bringing forth “dead works,” is to change his mind relative to “faith toward God.”  His unfaithfulness has resulted in the “dead works”; and he is to change his mind about the matter and exercise “faith,” with a view to other than “dead works” following.

How does a person exercise “faith toward God”?

According to Romans 10:17,

. . . faith comes by [out of] hearing, and hearing by [through] the Word of God.”

The words “faith” and “believe” are the same in the Greek text.  The former is a noun and the latter a verb.  They both mean the same thing.  That’s why “believe” (the verb) can be used in John 3:16 (a participle, formed from the verb, in the Greek text) and “faith” (the noun) can be used in Ephesians 2:8, referring to the same thing.

“Faith” is simply believing God, which will result in the person governing his life and actions accordingly.

For the unsaved, it is simply placing one’s trust, reliance in God’s Son.  He is the Savior, He has paid the price that God required, and a person places their trust in Him for salvation.  It’s that simple.

Then once the person has been saved, once he has passed “from death to life,” he is to exercise “faith toward God.”  And a person does that simply through putting his trust, reliance in that which God has to say in His Word.

Thus, it is easy to understand why the unsaved cannot exercise “faith toward God,” for, not having “passed from death to life,” they have no spiritual capacity for such understanding.  They do not have a saved human spirit into which the Word of God can be received; nor do they possess the indwelling Holy Spirit to take this Word and lead them “into all truth” (John 16:13).  They, within the scope of their ability to comprehend and understand the Word of God, can only look upon that which God has to say as “foolishness” (1 Corinthians 2:14).

James 2:14-26 is a central section on “faith and works” in Scripture.  And, within this section, the subject of works emanating out of faithfulness has to do with the saving of the soul (cf. James 1:21; 2:14).  The saving of the soul, in turn, has to do, not with “milk,” but with “solid food [strong meat].”  It has to do with the things surrounding the antitype of Melchizedek from Genesis 14:18, 19, dealt with in Hebrews chapters five through seven.

(For more information on James 2:14-26, refer to the author’s book, Salvation of the Soul BOOK, Chapter 5, in this site.)

Thus, in this respect, “repentance from dead works” and “faith toward God,” the first of the three categories listed in Hebrews 6:1-2, carries one through the entirety of the Christian experience — from immaturity to maturity.  “Repentance” and “faith” are fundamental and primary.  And viewing these together is, so to speak, where one must begin.  Consequently, the two are listed first among the three categories.

But a Christian in the race of the faith is not to remain on the starting blocks (Hebrews 12:1-2; cf. 1 Corinthians 9:24-27; 1 Timothy 6:12; 2 Timothy 4:7-8).  He, rather, is to move forward in the race, always progressing steadily toward the goal.  And though “repentance” and “faith” are fundamental and primary, they are associated just as much with the end as they are with the beginning.

Thus, insofar as a person going on to maturity is concerned, “repentance” and “faith” have just as much to do with the solid food/strong meat of the Word as they do with the milk of the Word.  It is, as in the words of Romans 1:17,

. . . from faith to faith [from the beginning to the end — it is all of “faith”]: as it is written, the just shall live by faith” (cf. Habakkuk 2:4; Hebrews 10:36-39; 11:1ff). 

2) Baptisms, Laying on of Hands

The word “baptisms” is, in the Greek text as in the English text, plural in its usage in Hebrews 6:2; and teachings surrounding that which is in view relative to baptisms, along with teachings surrounding that which is in view relative to the laying on of hands, is taken from teachings surrounding God’s dealings with the Israelites in the Old Testament Scriptures.

The word “baptism,” transliterated from the Greek word, baptizo, simply means to dip or to immerse.  And translating the word as “washing” (with the thought of dipping or immersing [in water] in mind [ref. NASB]) would perhaps best convey, to the English reader, that which the writer of Hebrews had in mind.

And to understand what is meant by “washings” in Hebrews 6:2, one must refer back to the rituals performed within the ranks of the Levitical priests who carried on a ministry at the tabernacle on behalf of the people of Israel.  The priests underwent a complete washing, bathing of their bodies, upon their entrance into the priesthood.  This was something that occurred once, never to be repeated.  However, as they subsequently ministered on behalf of the people, there were continual, repeated washings of parts of their bodies — their hands and feet, which repeatedly became soiled in the course of their ministry.

These washings occurred at the laver in the courtyard, which lay between the brazen altar and the Holy Place (Exodus 29:4; 30:18-21; 40:12-15, 30-32).

The typology in view, from this Old Testament account, is where Christ drew His teachings surrounding complete and partial washings when He washed the disciples’ feet in John 13:2-20.  Christ, relative to that which He was doing, used two different words for “wash” when dealing with Peter — louo and nipto.

He used louo relative to washing “the complete body” and nipto relative to washing “a part of the body.”  And, insofar as Peter and the other disciples were concerned, the former had already been performed (never to be repeated), but the latter needed to be performed repeatedly.  And the One doing the cleansing would, of necessity, have to provide this service on a continuous basis.

That is, the disciples had been washed completely once (illustrated by Christ’s use of louo).  They had been saved, justified.  But, following this complete washing, because of their coming in contact with the defilement of the world in which they lived, there was a need for subsequent partial washings (illustrated by Christ’s use of nipto).

The need for partial washings would parallel the defilement experienced by contact with the world.  The disciples were in continuous contact with a world which lay “under the sway of the wicked one” [lit., ‘in the wicked one’ (in Satan, the incumbent ruler)]” (1 John 5:19).  And, because of their contact with the world after this fashion, there would be no possible way that they could keep from becoming defiled at numerous, various times (1 John 1:8-10).  Consequently, there would be a need for cleansing from such contact on a continuous basis.

Christians are New Testament priests, who have been washed completely once — at the time of justification.  But, because of continuous contact with the surrounding world, defilement can and does occur.  And when such defilement occurs, the defiled person is to avail himself of provided cleansing, a partial washing.

This is what the opening part of the book of 1 John is about (1 John 1:3-2:2).  Christ, throughout the present dispensation, continuously occupies the office of High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary on behalf of Christians (1 John 2:1-2).

And, with Christ’s high priestly ministry in view, a present cleansing is provided for those who have, in the past, been cleansed (in the antitype of activity surrounding the brazen altar); and this present cleansing is seen in the antitype of subsequent activity occurring at the brazen laver; or, as previously shown, both past and present cleansings for Christians are seen in an initial complete washing of the body and subsequent washings of the hands and feet of the Levitical priests.

Note the preceding as it is presented in I John:

If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness [if we say that we have fellowship with Him but have failed to avail ourselves of cleansing through the use of the water in the laver in the courtyard, leaving us in the darkness outside the Holy Place (with its light and bread — the “candlestick” and “shewbread”)], we lie, and do not practice the truth. (John 1:6)

However,

. . . if we walk in the light, as He is in the light [if we avail ourselves of cleansing through the use of the water in the laver, allowing admittance to the Holy Place, with its light and bread], we have fellowship with one another . . . . (John 1:7a)

The preceding is viewing the matter more from the framework of the type.  Now, note the move from type to antitype.

The latter part of verse seven (John 1:7b) goes on to state,

. . . and the blood of Jesus Christ His [God’s] Son cleanses us from all sin.

Cleansing provided at the laver forms the type, and cleansing provided by “the blood of Jesus Christ,” which is on the mercy seat of the heavenly tabernacle, forms the antitype.  Our cleansing today thus comes, not through the water in the laver in the courtyard, but through the blood of God’s Son that is on the mercy seat.  One must see and understand the antitype in the light of the type to see and understand the complete picture.

(For a more detailed exposition of complete and subsequent partial washings as set forth in John 13:2-20, in the light of Old Testament typology, see Chapter 8 in the author’s book, From Egypt to Canaan BOOK, in this site.)

Doctrine surrounding the “laying on of hands,” in connection with doctrine surrounding “baptisms [‘washings’],” is an area of biblical study that also has its basis in Old Testament typology.  And, as in “the doctrine of baptisms,” this is where one must go to understand that which is referred to by the “laying on of hands” in Hebrews 6:2.

“Hands” are used in a figurative manner numerous places throughout Scripture.  And they are used in these numerous places various ways to represent action on both God’s part and man’s part (cf. Genesis 16:12; Numbers 11:23; 1 Samuel 26:18; Ecclesiastes 2:24).

They, for example, are used as symbols of “power,” or “strength” (cf. Exodus 15:6; Psalm 17:7; 110:1).  They are used to demonstrate “pure” or “unjust” actions (cf. Psalm 90:17; Isaiah 1:15).  Or, washing the hands, as Pilate did when he was about to deliver Jesus over to the cry of the Jewish religious leaders to be crucified, could, as he sought to do, symbolize an outward show of “innocence” (Matthew 27:24; cf. Deuteronomy 21:6-7; Psalm 26:6).

The “laying on of hands” then would represent a type action that carries a particular meaning.  And the meaning is given, in so many words, in the account of that which the Lord instructed Aaron to do with one of two goats on the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16:5ff).

Aaron was to take a bullock and two goats.  The bullock and one goat (determined by lot) were to be killed, and the blood of these two animals was then to be used “to make an atonement in the holy place” “for himself, and for his household [the priests (Leviticus 16:33)], and for all the congregation of Israel” (Leviticus 16:14-19).

After Aaron had finished with his work of sprinkling blood before and upon the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies of the tabernacle, he was then to take the live goat and perform a climactic act.  He was to lay both hands upon the head of the goat and confess all the “iniquities” and “transgressions” of the children of Israel.  And by this act, the Israelites’ “iniquities” and “transgressions,” which had just been atoned for, were placed “upon the head of the goat.”  The goat was then to be taken into “the wilderness” and released, never to return back into the camp of Israel (Leviticus 16:20-22).

By Aaron laying his hands on the head of the live goat, there was both an identification and a separation.  By transferring the sins of the people to the goat, an identification was established.  The goat became identified with these sins rather than the people; and this established a separation, which would be even further shown through the goat being taken to an uninhabited part of the land and released.

This thought of identification and separation can be clearly seen in the action of the Apostles after they had chosen certain men to attend to a particular ministry in the early Church (Acts 6:1-6).  They chose seven men who were “full of faith and the Holy Spirit.”  These men appeared before the Apostles, the Apostles prayed, and they then “laid hands” on the men (Acts 6:5-6).

There was an identification of the Apostles with these men who had been separated, set apart from the remainder of the Church for a particular task.  And this was shown through the laying on of the Apostles’ hands.

Thus, viewing “baptisms” (lit., “washings”) and the “laying on of hands” together, there is the thought of cleansing, identification, and separation; and these go together like a hand in a glove.

Christians constitute a people who have been separated from the world for a particular purpose (1 Peter 2:9-11).  They, forming the “body,” are inseparably identified with their Lord, who is the “Head” of the body (Ephesians 5:23-32; Colossians 1:18).  They, positionally, are part of an entirely new creation, the one new man “in Christ” (Ephesians 2:13-15; 2 Corinthians 5:17).  And, occupying this position and understanding not only the reason why they have been saved but understanding that which lies out ahead as well, Christians are to keep themselves clean through repeated “washings” at the laver.

(The section leading into [Hebrews 8:1-10:22], the fourth of the five major warnings in Hebrews 10:23-39, concerns itself more specifically with this overall matter.

Because of Christ’s high priestly ministry [which He performs on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat of the heavenly tabernacle], present cleansing is available for a separated, set apart people who are inseparably identified with their Lord.)

3) Resurrection, Eternal Judgment

The third of the triad of teachings dealt with in Hebrews 6:1-2 can, as the other two parts, pertain to both “milk” and “solid food” (“strong meat”) within the scope of that which is in view.  There are elementary teachings when one comes to the overall subject of resurrection and subsequent judgment, but there are also teachings that go far beyond the elementary.

Concerning resurrection, there is simply the teaching that the dead will, in the future, be raised.  Then within this teaching one will find the more specific biblical teaching that all the dead will not be raised at the same time.  Every man will be raised “in his own order [‘company’].”

Christ was raised as “the first fruits those who have fallen asleep,” anticipating the resurrection of all others, both the saved and the unsaved.  “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:20-23).  The two uses of “all” in the verse are all-inclusive.  All who die “in Adam” (which includes all humanity) will be made alive “in Christ.”

That is, every man who dies (whether saved or unsaved) will one day be raised on the basis of the fact Christ was raised.  But, every man will be raised “in his own order [‘company’].”

The Church forms one company, the Tribulation saints another, and the Old Testament saints another.  And at the conclusion of the Messianic Era there will be yet another company of individuals raised from the dead — the unsaved dead of all the ages (1 Corinthians 15:22-24; cf. Ezekiel 37:1-14; Luke 24:5-6; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; Revelation 20:4-6, 11-15).

Then there is the biblical teaching that judgment always follows resurrection.  There is first death, with announced subsequent judgment (Hebrews 9:27).  This is the biblical order, but this order doesn’t stand alone.  Scripture elsewhere presents the dead being judged only following resurrection (cf. 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 1:10-18 [cf. Revelation 4:1ff]; Revelation 20:4).

Every man will not only be resurrected “in his own order [‘company’]” but he will also be judged, following resurrection, “in his own order [‘company’].”  Particular future judgments will occur only following particular companies of individuals being raised from the dead.

The Church will appear before the judgment seat of Christ, preceding the Tribulation (2 Corinthians 5:10-11; cf. Revelation 1:10-20); Israel (along with Old Testament saints preceding Abraham) and the martyred Tribulation saints will be judged following Christ’s return at the end of the Tribulation (Job 14:14; 19:25-27; Ezekiel 20:33-38; Revelation 20:4-6); and the unsaved dead of all the ages will be judged at the end of the 1,000-year Messianic Era, which follows the Tribulation (Revelation 20:11-15).

The basics of the preceding though would really have to do more with milk than meat within the framework of biblical doctrine.  This is merely the outline of the matter, apart from specifics.  But a person must understand the outline before he can begin to properly understand specifics within the outline.

That which is in view concerning the “resurrection of the dead” and “eternal judgment” in Hebrews 6:2, contextually, must pertain to Christians, not other companies of individuals — either saved or unsaved.  The whole panorama of doctrine thus far in the opening verses of the sixth chapter has had to do with Christians alone, and the summation of the matter can be no different.

The words “eternal judgment” in this passage though would really convey an incorrect thought relative to a future judgment of Christians, for Christians have already been judged insofar as eternal verities are concerned (cf. John 3:18); and the only type of judgment awaiting them has to do with “an age” — the Messianic Era (decisions and determinations emanating from the things revealed at the judgment seat of Christ will have to do with the Messianic Era alone, not with the eternal ages).

The seemingly textual problem though is easily resolved by understanding that the Greek word translated eternal in this passage (aionios) can be understood as either “age-lasting” or “eternal,” depending on the context.  And the context here demands the former, not the latter.

(Refer to Chapter 2 of this book, for a discussion of how aionios is used in the Greek New Testament.)

But what is there beyond simple, factual teachings surrounding the future resurrection and judgment of Christians that could be categorized as “solid food” rather than “milk”?  The answer is evident.  Beyond the simple facts there are teachings surrounding an out-resurrection, and the out-resurrection is inseparably connected with the issues of the judgment seat.  The out-resurrection actually results from the purpose and outcome of this judgment.

The “out-resurrection” and that to which it pertains can be found in Philippians 3:11 (the word “resurrection” in this verse is a translation of the Greek word, exanastasis, which should literally be translated “out-resurrection”).  And the context (Philippians 3:10, 12-14) has to do with present Christian activity in view of future decisions and determinations emanating from the things revealed at the judgment seat.

(The Greek word anastasis, translated “resurrection” [e.g., Philippians 3:10], is a compound word meaning “to stand up.”  Ana means “up,” and stasis means “to stand.”  Anastasis appears in Philippians 3:11 with the Greek preposition “ek,” meaning “out of [i.e., ‘from within’],” prefixed to the word [becoming “ex” when prefixed to words beginning with a vowel, as in this case].  Thus, ex-ana-stasis means “to stand up out of.”

This “standing up out of” — the “out-resurrection” of Philippians 3:11 — simply refers to a further separation that will occur at the judgment seat.  The resurrection [anastasis] of Christians will separate all Christians from all non-Christians [Jew or Gentile]; and the subsequent out-resurrection [exanastasis] will separate one group of Christians [the faithful] from the remaining Christians [the unfaithful].)

At the judgment seat of Christ there will be a “standing up” of certain Christians “out of” the remaining Christians, based on decisions and determinations rendered by the righteous Judge.  And standing separate from the others within this select group in that day will be a privilege accorded those previously found to have exercised faithfulness in their assigned household responsibilities during the time of their Lord’s absence.

It is in this realm where one finds the meat and strong meat pertaining to resurrection and judgment awaiting Christians;  and it is also in this realm where one finds the end or goal of all that which is referred to through the triad of doctrinal teaching delineated in Hebrews 6:1-2. 

And This Will We Do If . . . . 

Hebrews 6:3 introduces the heart of the third of the five major warnings in Hebrews (Hebrews 6:4-6).  Verses one and two form the connection for that which preceded with that which follows.  Then verse three provides an additional connecting thought, which carries one directly into the heart of the warning itself.

Essentially, the verse states that we will follow the writer’s exhortation to go on to maturity if God permits us to go on.  This, of course, leaves one with the thought that God may not permit some Christians to go on into the deep things in His Word.

And that is exactly the case, with the warning itself answering the question, “Why?”

For it is impossible . . .” (Hebrews 6:4).
Chapter Five
If They Shall Fall Away

And this we will do, if God permits.

For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit,

and have tasted the good Word of God and the powers of the age to come,

if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame. (Hebrews 6:3-6)

The line of teaching thus far in the third of the five major warnings in Hebrews — in perfect keeping with the things set forth in the first two warnings — is with constant reference to that coming day when Christ will reign over the earth as “King of kings, and Lord of lords.”  The day is coming, at the end of the Great Tribulation, when an angel will sound the last of seven trumpets; and, in connection with the sounding of this trumpet, “loud voices in heaven” are going to be heard, announcing:

The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Revelation 11:15 ASV; cf. Revelation 10:1-7).

The whole of God’s revelation to man, beginning with the opening two chapters of Genesis, progressively moves toward the same goal — that coming day announced in Revelation 11:15.  And revelation throughout the book of Hebrews, in perfect keeping with revelation as a whole, views that future day as central in all matters surrounding the past or present.

The Warning Passages

The first of the five major warnings in the book of Hebrews deals with “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3), which is the greatest thing God has ever designed for redeemed man.  This salvation has to do with Christians being elevated from this earth and placed in the heavens on the throne as co-heirs with the “King of kings, and Lord of lords”; and the time when this will occur is revealed to be in that coming day when Christ fulfills the things that are stated in the seven Messianic passages making up most of chapter one, leading into the first warning.

Also in connection with the first warning there is a revealed angelic ministry (Hebrews 1:13-14; 2:5); and this ministry is with a view to Christians wearing the crowns presently worn by angels when they one day rule in the kingdom under Christ (see the author’s book, So Great Salvation BOOK, Chapter 2, in this site).

The second of the five major warnings (Hebrews 3; 4) begins by addressing those to whom the warning applies:

Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling . . . . (Hebrews 3:1a).

The parallel is then drawn between Israel’s earthly calling and the Christians’ heavenly calling, with the writer drawing extensively from the type surrounding Israel’s calling for all his spiritual lessons concerning the Christians’ calling.

The land of Canaan during Moses and Joshua’s day was occupied by the Nephilim, who had infiltrated and corrupted the Gentile nations in the land (Numbers 13:32-33 [the word, Nephilim, literally meaning, “fallen ones,” is a name used in Scripture for the offspring resulting from a co-habitation of “the sons of God” with “the daughters of men”;  cf. Genesis 6:4]); and the Gentile nations, infiltrated and corrupted by the Nephilim, were there at the pre-planned direction of Satan and his angels (who ruled from the heavens through the Gentile nations on earth [Daniel 10:13, 20; cf. Luke 4:6; Revelation 13:2]) to contest Israel’s right to enter into and take possession of this land.

That heavenly land to which Christians have been called, on the other hand, is presently occupied by Satan and his angels (the one-third who went along with Satan in his attempted coup, separate from the two-thirds who refused).  And at the heart of all teachings surrounding the second warning is a type-antitype parallel between the Israelites under Moses (and later Joshua) and Christians under Christ.

The Israelites, in the type, were called to leave one earthly land (Egypt) and dwell in another earthly land (Canaan) as “a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.”  They were to dwell in that land, as God’s “firstborn son,” within a theocracy (cf. Exodus 4:22-23; 40:34-38; Joel 2:27ff).

And in this manner, with God dwelling in Israel’s midst and the nation exercising the rights of primogeniture, the Gentile nations were to be ruled by and blessed through the seed of Abraham, in perfect keeping with Genesis 12:2-3; 14:18-19; 22:17-18.

Christians, on the other hand, in the antitype, have been called to leave this earth and dwell in another land, in the heavens, as “kings and priests” and a “holy nation,” occupying the position of God’s firstborn son as well (following the adoption).  They are to dwell in that heavenly land within a theocracy, seated on the throne with Christ (cf. 1 Peter 2:9-10; Revelation 2:26-27; 5:10).

And in this manner, with Christians occupying positions of rulership with Christ, exercising (with Christ) the rights of primogeniture, the Gentile nations are to be ruled by and blessed through the seed of Abraham from a heavenly sphere as well (Galatians 3:29), also in perfect keeping with Genesis 12:2-3; 14:18-19; 22:17-18.

Satan and his angels are present in that heavenly land today — as the Gentile nations infiltrated and corrupted by the Nephilim were present in the land of Canaan during Moses and Joshua’s day — contesting the Christians’ right to one day enter and take possession of the land.  This is what the “manifold wisdom of God” being made known “by [‘through’] the Church” to “the principalities and powers in heavenly places” is all about in Ephesians 3:9-11, and this is what the warfare against these same regal powers in Ephesians 6:10ff is also all about.

The announcement has gone forth, “by [through] the Church,” to Satan and his angels in the heavens, that they are about to be replaced.  Both “Christ,” the Head, and the “Church,” the body, are on hand, waiting for that day.  And Satan, with knowledge of this fact, can only know that his time is short and that his days are numbered.

Christ has shown Himself fully qualified to take the kingdom (Matthew 4:1-11), and He has paid redemption’s price to redeem fallen man so that man can be brought back into the position for which he was created in the beginning (cf. Genesis 1:26, 28; 3:15; John 19:30); and the Holy Spirit is in the world today calling out the bride, who will ascend the throne with God’s Son in that coming day.

Knowing these things, Satan and his angels cannot anymore like the thought of Christ and Christians one day occupying the heavenly places that they presently occupy than the Gentile nations in the land of Canaan almost 3,500 years ago (under Satan’s direction and control) could have liked the thought of the Israelites coming in and occupying that land in their stead.

Thus, the warfare of Ephesians 6:11ff rages.  And, because of this warfare, Christians are called upon to make the necessary preparations.  They are called upon to properly array themselves for the ongoing “battle,” a battle which is very real.  And there is a “prize” in view, which is also very real — that of one day being accorded the privilege of occupying a position as co-heir with Christ in His kingdom (cf. Philippians 3:10-14);  and this prize can either be won (through overcoming in the battle) or lost (through being overcome in the battle).

Then the third major warning in Hebrews (Hebrews 5; 6) centers on Genesis 14:18-19 for its spiritual lessons — the only historic account of Melchizedek in the entire Old Testament (Psalm 110:4, the only other reference to Melchizedek in the Old Testament, draws from Genesis 14:18-19).  And though the account is very brief, it is fraught beyond compare with spiritual significance.  The whole of that which is taught in the spiritual lessons in Hebrews chapters five through seven draws from the whole of that which is taught surrounding Melchizedek in this one Old Testament passage.

Melchizedek was a king-priest in Jerusalem (cf. Genesis 14:18; Psalm 76:2), and though Christ is presently “a priest after the order of Melchizedek,” as He is presently “King [He was born ‘King of the Jews’],” He has yet to occupy either office (cf. Matthew 2:2; Hebrews 5:10; 6:20; 7:11).  He is presently ministering as High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary, on the basis of shed blood, after the order of Aaron.  It will only be when He leaves His present position in the sanctuary and comes forth as “King” that He will exercise the office of King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek” (ref. Chapter 1 in this book).

The writer of Hebrews dealt with this subject (Hebrews 5:1-10), then he dealt with spiritual babes “in Christ” who were not mature enough to understunderstanding of the things surrounding Christ’s comingunderstanding of the things surrounding Christ’s comingand these things (Hebrews 5:11-14), and then he exhorted these immature Christians to leave the foundational truths and go on to maturity (Hebrews 6:1-2).

And there is no getting around one central truth in this section of Scripture:  Maturity in the faith, as it is set forth in Hebrews 5:5-6:2, has to do with coming to a knowledge and understanding of those things that the Word of God reveals concerning that future day when Christ reigns over the earth as the great King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek.”

That which is stated in Hebrews 6:3 (“And this will we do, if God permit”), and the heart of the warning itself in Hebrews 6:4-6 (“For it is impossible . . . .”), MUST be understood within the framework of that which preceded it.  These verses must, contextually, be understood as having to do with Christians coming into a knowledge and understanding of the things surrounding Christ’s coming reign over the earth “after the order of Melchizedek.”

Reading into Hebrews 6:4-6 the thought of salvation by grace through faith (as so many do) is not only completely out of line with the context but it is also completely out of line with any Scriptural teaching concerning salvation by grace through faith, beginning with the opening two chapters of Genesis.

The context has to do with Christian maturity (which centers on coming into an understanding of specific future things, for a revealed purpose); and the message concerning salvation by grace through faith centers on the Christians’ presently possessed salvation, based on two finished works of the Triune Godhead:

1) The finished work of the Son at Calvary.

2) The finished work performed by the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer — breathing life into the one having no life, performed on the basis of and made possible through the Son’s prior finished work.

Hebrews 6:4-6 has to do strictly with God’s present and future work in the lives of Christians, not with His past work, effecting their present position, “in Christ.”  This section of Scripture is written to and has to do solely with those who are already saved, and it has to do specifically with bringing these saved individuals into a mature knowledge and understanding of the things surrounding Christ’s coming reign over the earth, as the great King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek.”

And This Will We Do, If . . . . . 

Hebrews 6:3 should be taken at face value.  That is, We will go on to maturity (Hebrews 6:1-2), if God permits us to go on (Hebrews 6:3).  And one is then left with the thought that God may not permit some Christians to go on to maturity.

Leading into Hebrews 6:3, the writer had previously reprimanded a group of Christians for their lack of spiritual maturity.  They had been saved for a sufficient length of time that all of them should have been well enough grounded in the Word that they could do two things (Hebrews 5:10-14):

1) Be able to understand teachings surrounding the coming Melchizedek priesthood of Christ.

2) Be able to teach others these things as well.

Then, following the reprimand, the writer exhorted these same Christians to leave “the elementary principles [the rudimentary things of the Christian faith]” and “go on to perfection [maturity in ‘the faith’]” (Hebrews 5:12; 6:1-2).

Then after this comes the statement that going on to maturity is conditional.  It is conditioned on God allowing the person to go on.  But bear in mind that this is not maturity in what might be considered a general sense; rather, the reference is to maturity in a specific sense.  This is maturity in that which Scripture calls “the faith” or “the word of the kingdom” (cf. Matthew 13:19; 1 Timothy 6:12; Jude 1:3) — maturity in things surrounding Christ’s coming reign over the earth “after the order of Melchizedek” (Hebrews 5:10ff).

Thus, the writer is dealing with a specific realm of biblical teaching that is little understood in Christendom today.  And this would provide a basic explanation (in conjunction with the working of the leaven in Matthew 13:33) for the existing situation.  Not only is there a present lack of knowledge (much less an understanding) concerning this whole overall message in Christendom but something even beyond this exists.  Along with the lack of knowledge and understanding, an overt aversion, more often than not, is exhibited toward any teaching on the subject.

(Note, by way of passing, that an aversion of this nature invariably emanates from two spheres:  1) Ignorance rather than knowledge.  2) Immaturity rather than maturity.)

And, projecting the matter out to the end of the dispensation, this is the message Christ will not find being taught to Christians in the churches at the time of His return.  Though this is the central message that Christians are supposed to hear once they have been grounded in the rudimentary things of the Word, Christ stated that by the end of the dispensation, at the time of His return, conditions will have become so completely contrary to the way they should exist that He will not find “faith [lit., ‘the faith’] on the earth” (Luke 18:8).

The reason why God will not allow certain Christians to go on to an understanding of these truths is given in the verses that immediately follow (Hebrews 6:4-6), which comprise the heart of the warning.  Hebrews 6:3 forms a connection between that which has preceded and that which follows; and this verse must, accordingly, be understood in the light of the complete context — verses both preceding and following.

Very briefly, note the verses leading into Hebrews 6:3 before going on to the verses forming the explanation.  The former verses (Hebrews 5:5-6:2) explain the matter from one standpoint, using one type; then the latter verses (Hebrews 6:4-6) explain the matter from another standpoint, using another type.

Hebrews 5 draws its spiritual lessons from Genesis 14 (and Psalm 110, which also draws from Genesis 14).  The subject has to do with Abraham meeting Melchizedek following the battle of the kings.

Melchizedek, at this time, brought forth “bread and wine” and blessed Abraham, “of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth” (Genesis 14:17-19).  This, of course, points to that day in the antitype, following the battle of the kings (Revelation 19:17-21), when Christ comes forth with “bread and wine” — as King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek” — to bless Abraham and his descendants, both heavenly and earthly (Matthew 26:29).

Now note something about the type, which must carry over into the antitype.  Abraham, after meeting Melchizedek, no longer manifested any interest in the things of this world.  The king of Sodom offered him goods, but his response was completely negative.  Abraham said to the king of Sodom:

I have raised my hand to the LORD, God Most High, the Possessor of heaven and earth,

that I will take nothing, from a thread to a sandal strap, and that I will not take anything that is yours, lest you should say, “I have made Abram rich” 

except only what the young men have eaten . . . .” (Genesis 14:22-24a).

Having met Melchizedek, Abraham manifested total disinterest in that which the king of Sodom had to offer.  He had found something so far greater than the things this world could offer that he refused to take anything (other than food) from the king of Sodom.  Rather, his interest was focused on the things surrounding Melchizedek (cf. Hebrews 12:2, “looking to Jesus . . . [lit., ‘Looking from (the surrounding things of the world) to Jesus’]”). 

Abraham, by this experience, could only have gained a whole new perspective on the present in relation to the future, and vice versa.  Thus, Abraham, relative to the magnanimous offer of the king of Sodom, in a word, told the king, No!

And that is where Christ comes into the picture in prophecy as the great King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek.”  The Father — “the possessor of heaven and earth” (Genesis 14:22) — has given all that He has to the Son (cf. Genesis 24:36; 25:5; John 16:13-15); and in that coming day, with the Son occupying both His own throne in the heavens and David’s throne on the earth, blessings will flow out to the Gentile nations through the seed of Abraham (“possessor of heaven and earth [through inheritance]”) from both heavenly and earthly spheres.

And when a Christian sees Christ, within this framework, as the great King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek,” this should drive him to manifest the same attitude toward the things of this world as Abraham manifested toward the things of the world after he met Melchizedek.  In the words of the song, “the things of this world” should “grow strangely dim.”  The Christian should possess an entirely new perspective on the present in relation to the future, and vice versa.

But, how often is the preceding really the case in the lives of Christians?  How many really understand these things?  Or, how many really view matters within the framework of “the light of His glory and grace”?

And therein lies the secret to questions surrounding Hebrews 6:3.  We are dealing with the very choicest of God’s choice things that He has set aside for Christians, and God has placed certain conditions around allowing Christians to move into a knowledge of the Son in this realm (cf. Philippians 3:10-14).  God knows what is in man; and He also knows what man coming into a knowledge and understanding of these things will, too often, do.

God knows that numerous Christians, after coming into a knowledge and understanding of Christ as King-Priest, “after the order of Melchizedek,” would not manifest the same attitude at all toward the world as Abraham manifested after he met Melchizedek.  They would, instead, either continue in or one day return to their worldly interest and involvement (cf. 1 John 2:15-17), which is within a world presently ruled by Satan and his angels.  And by so doing, such Christians could only bring shame upon Christ’s name (this will be further dealt with later in the chapter within the framework of that which is stated in Hebrews 6:6).

The matter surrounding God allowing or not allowing a Christian to go on to maturity though should be viewed more within the framework of man’s attitude toward these things than it should within the framework of God’s omniscience per se.  Scripture clearly states,

If anyone want to do [is willing to do] His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine . . . . (John 7:17)

That is: Do you really want to know Christ as “author [‘source’] of eternal salvation [salvation for the age (the Messianic Era)]”? (Hebrews 5:9).  Are you serious about the present warfare and one day coming into a realization of the proffered inheritance?  If so, there should be no reason why God would not allow you to go on into a knowledge and understanding of the various things surrounding His Son’s coming reign over the earth.

But, if on the other hand, an interest in and a seriousness about the matter are not present, there is no biblical reason why God should allow such a person to go on into a knowledge and understanding of these things.  In fact, within a biblical perspective, the opposite would exist instead.  From a biblical perspective, God would not allow such a person to go on, for a revealed reason.

And with this in mind, we’re ready to go on into the heart of the warning and see the explanation to verse three from the perspective of the type in the preceding warning in chapters three and four.

For It Is Impossible . . .

Hebrews 6:4-6 is looked upon by numerous Christians as possibly the most difficult and/or controversial passage in all Scripture.  And the reason why the passage is looked upon after this fashion is because of an erroneous interpretative approach.  The passage is invariably approached from the standpoint of teachings surrounding the Christians’ presently possessed eternal salvation — salvation “by grace through faith.”

The passage though, as previously stated, doesn’t deal with this subject.  And, not dealing with this subject, it is understandable why those who seek to interpret the passage from the standpoint of teachings surrounding salvation by grace through faith find themselves in unfamiliar surroundings.  And not only is this the case, but they often, as well, find themselves being forced into erroneous views concerning salvation.

Then, beyond the preceding, the correct subject matter is not even being dealt with.  Rather, through this erroneous interpretative approach, the correct subject matter is, instead, completely obscured.  And such can only foster the present work of the enemy as it is outlined in 2 Corinthians 4:4 — blinding the minds of Christians relative to “the gospel of the glory of Christ” (NKJV; ASV).

1) Once Enlightened…But Fell Away

Certain descriptive words appearing in verses four and five make it virtually impossible to look upon these verses as describing unsaved people.

There is the word, “enlightened” (Hebrews 6:4), which is used in Hebrews 10:32, translated “illuminated.”  And according to 1 Corinthians 2:14, “the natural man” cannot be enlightened or illuminated in spiritual matters.  Then, beyond that, the passage is dealing with things other than the milkof the Word; it is dealing with the “solid food [strong meat]” of the Word (Hebrews 5:12-14).

Then there is the word, “tasted” (Hebrews 6:4-5).  This is the same word used for Christ tasting death “for every man” in Hebrews 2:9.  The experiences entered into by those in Hebrews 6:4-5 must be looked upon as a tasting to the same extent that Christ tasted “death” at Calvary.  The latter was full and complete, and the former must be as well.

And the last descriptive word is “partakers” (Hebrews 6:4).  This is the same word translated “fellows” in Hebrews 1:9 and “partakers” in Hebrews 3:1, 14.  This is the word metochoi, which could be better translated, “companions.”  It is used in chapters one and three describing Christ’s co-heirs, His companions, in the coming day of His power.

Being “enlightened,” tasting “of the heavenly gift,” being made “partakers of the Holy Spirit,” tasting “the good Word of God,” and tasting “the powers of the world [‘age’] to come” form a description of Christians progressively coming into a mature knowledge and understanding of the things surrounding Christ as the great King-Priest “after the order of Melchizedek” from Hebrews 5.  It, thus, has to do with Christians coming into a mature knowledge and understanding of Christ and His companions’ coming reign over the earth.

Then, spiritual lessons surrounding the possibility of Christians falling away after coming into this mature state is drawn from the type dealt with prior to the introduction of Melchizedek in Hebrews 5 — the account of the Israelites under Moses (Hebrews 3; 4).

The Israelites under Moses passed through similar experiences within the framework of their earthly calling, climaxed by their hearing the report of the twelve spies and tasting the actual fruits of the land that they had brought back with them.

And that which happened to the Israelites at this point (in the type) is where one must go in order to understand the falling away and accompanying statements (in the antitype) in Hebrews 6:6.

The Israelites at Kadesh-Barnea were in possession of the Word of God (received at Sinai), God dwelled in their midst (in the Holy of Holies of the tabernacle, built and erected at Sinai), they had heard the report of the spies, and they had tasted the actual fruits of the land (brought back by the spies).

And occupying this position, they were then ready to enter the land, conquer and possess the land, and subsequently realize their calling in the land as God’s firstborn son.

They, at this point, were in possession of what could only be looked upon as a mature knowledge of the whole of that which was in view.  They understood their calling and that which lay out ahead.  And it is at this point that they fell away and, within the framework of that stated in the antitype in Hebrews 6:4-6, found it impossible to be renewed “again to repentance.”

2) Impossible To Renew Again…Because…

The report that the spies brought back concerning the land was both positive and negative.  It was a good land, flowing with “milk and honey”; but the inhabitants, infiltrated by the Nephilim, were strong and lived in walled cities (Numbers 13:26-29, 32-33).

Caleb and Joshua, exhorting the people, said,

Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it. (Numbers 13:30)

But the remaining spies said,

We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we. (Numbers 13:31)

The people of Israel heard the report and both exhortations, but they believed the evil report of the ten spies rather than the true report of Caleb and Joshua.  And their resulting actions said it all.  They wept, began to murmur against Moses and Aaron, and then looked back to Egypt, wishing that they had never left.  Then, to climax matters, they sought to appoint another leader and return to Egypt (Numbers 14:1-4).

They, in the words of the antitype, fell away.  They had turned their backs upon God; and God, correspondingly, turned His back upon them.  Because of that which had transpired, the most severe judgment possible was pronounced upon the entire accountable generation.  Every single individual comprising that generation, twenty years old and above, save Caleb and Joshua, was to be overthrown in the wilderness.

And once this apostasy had occurred (with its corresponding pronounced judgment), there could be no renewal “again to repentance” (as in the antitype).  And the reason, drawing again from the antitype (“crucify to themselves the Son of God”), is because they had brought shame and reproach upon the One (God) dwelling in their midst, who was to have led them victoriously into the land.

(“Repentance” simply means a change of mind.  And in both the type and antitype, the change of mind is on the part of God, not on the part of the Israelites [type] or on the part of Christians [antitype].)

The Israelites, the very next day, repented (changed their minds).  They “rose up early” and sought to “go up to the place” which the Lord had promised.  But the Lord didn’t repent (He didn’t change His mind).  He was no longer with them relative to their entering the land and victoriously combating the enemy; and, consequently, the Israelites, trying to enter the land apart from the Lord’s leadership, were smitten and driven back (Numbers 14:40-45).

And that’s what Hebrews 6:4-6 is about.  If God allows a Christian to come into a mature knowledge of His Son’s coming reign as the great King-Priest “after the order of Melchizedek,” and that Christian apostatizes, the same thing will occur as that which occurred with the Israelites under Moses (it would have to, for the antitype must follow the type in exact detail).

The Christian would be cut off insofar as those things surrounding his calling were concerned.  He would not be allowed to subsequently enter that heavenly land to which he had been called and victoriously combat the enemy therein.  He could never be brought back to the position that he had previously occupied.  Which is to say, he could not be renewed “again to repentance.”

Though the Christian may later change his mind about the matter (as the Israelites did), God would not change His mind (as in the type).  The Christian, like the Israelites, would be overthrown on the right side of the blood but on the wrong side of the goal of his calling.

And the reason for such severe judgment on God’s part results from the fact that, through this act, such a Christian could only bring shame and reproach upon the name of Christ.

Note the entire expression,

. . . they crucify again for themselves the Son of God [‘afresh,’ as in the KJV, is not in the Greek text, though implied], and put Him to an open shame” (Hebrews 6:6).

The thought has to do with the shame and reproach surrounding Calvary, not with subjecting the Son to a second crucifixion, for such an act is impossible (Hebrews 7:27).

But subjecting the Son to this same type of shame and reproach at the hands of the world is very possible today;  and such shame and reproach can result from the act of any Christian falling away in the antitype of the Israelites at Kadesh-Barnea.

A Christian though, to fall away after this fashion, would have to do two things:

1) He would first have to come into a mature knowledge and understanding of the things surrounding Christ’s coming reign over the earth.

2) He would then have to apostatize after the same fashion in which the Israelites apostatized (looking away from Moses and the land [an earthly land], back to Egypt; i.e., looking away from Christ and the land [a heavenly land], back to the world).

And doing this, a Christian would be subjecting God’s Son to the same type of humiliation and shame that He experienced at Calvary.  The expression, “crucify again for themselves,” is actually explained by the remainder of the verse — “put [expose] Him to an open shame.”  It is subjecting the world’s coming Ruler to humiliation and shame by the one “in Christ” turning from that which lies out ahead and focusing his attention back on the present world system under the incumbent ruler, Satan.

And this is something that God will not allow.  Thus, the verse,

And this we will do [we will go on to maturity in the things surrounding Christ’s coming reign over the earth], if God permits [if God permits us to go on]” (Hebrews 6:3).
Chapter Six
Two Kinds of Growth

For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God;

but if it bears thorns and briars, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned. (Hebrews 6:7-8)

The subject matter, contextually, must center on that which has preceded it.  The writer uses an illustration, drawn from nature, which corresponds to that which he has been discussing.  It is an illustration concerning two kinds of plant growth, resulting in two types of fruit.

This illustration would reflect back on the immediate context, which deals with maturity in the faith.  It deals with Christian growth or non-growth and a corresponding fruit bearing in relation to each.

The two types of fruit presented though are quite different, with one type being looked upon as barren (fruitless) in other passages of Scripture (cf. Mark 11:13; James 2:20 [ref. ASV]).

Some Greek manuscripts have the word arge, “barren,” rather than nekros, “dead,” in James 2:20.  Regardless though, “barren” or “dead,” in the sense spoken of here, would be the same — the same as that which is seen in Hebrews 6:8, bearing “thorns and briers.” As in the previous verses, the unsaved are not in view in Hebrews 6:7-8; nor is one’s eternal destiny in view.  The passage deals strictly with those who are already saved, those in a position to bring forth fruit.

Drawing from the type in the context, the passage deals with things beyond Exodus 12 — with man at a point beyond the death of the firstborn.  It deals with man in a position to bring forth fruit relative to the hope of his calling.

Preceding events surrounding the death of the firstborn, there is no such thing as man being placed in a position of this nature.  Prior to the point of salvation, a person is associated only with the earth.  He is associated with Adam, who was made from “the dust of the ground” (Genesis 2:7).  And at the time of the fall, the ground came under a curse:

. . . Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life.

Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you . . . . (Genesis 3:17-18a [17b])

Fallen man is “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1).  And insofar as works or fruit bearing are concerned, he can only do two things:

1) He can only produce works or bring forth fruit in association with the cursed earth, with which he finds himself connected.

2) He can only be active after this fashion within the sphere of the one life he possesses (“natural,” i.e., “soulical” [cf. 1 Corinthians 2:14ff]).

He could never, in an eternity of time, rise above his connection with the earth; nor, in the same eternity of time, could he remove himself from the “natural.”  Thus, he, in and of himself, could never bring forth anything acceptable to God.  All which he, in his fallen state, might consider as “righteous” would only be looked upon by God after one fashion — “as filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6).

Man has a spiritual problem, which had its origin in the fall.  Man, at that time, found himself separated from God; and, apart from divine intervention, resulting in redemption, that’s where he would not only continue to remain today but for all eternity as well.

Unredeemed man’s association with the “natural” leaves him alienated from God; and his association with the “earth” leaves him destined for destruction.

This is the reason man MUST be born from above, which is a spiritual birth.  There is no alternative.  If he would escape the state in which he presently finds himself, he must escape this state through God’s provided means.

Unredeemed man has no capacity whatsoever to act either relative to or within the “spiritual realm.”  Insofar as spiritual matters are concerned, unredeemed man has no more ability to act than any person in any graveyard has the ability to act physically.  Both are dead — one spiritually, the other physically.  And, apart from divine intervention, neither could ever make even the most minute move conceivable — one in the spiritual realm, the other in the physical realm.

Thus, unredeemed man, to escape his present state, must be made alive spiritually.  He must be brought from his dead, alienated state to a living, non-alienated state.  That is, he must be removed from his present state and be placed in an entirely different state.  He must pass “from death to life” (John 5:24).

A man can make no move toward the Red Sea and the things lying beyond (Exodus 13ff) until he has first settled the matter surrounding the death of the firstborn (Exodus 12).  Otherwise, as Pharaoh and his armed forces, he will be stopped at the Sea; and there will he die, with no removal from Egypt and resurrection to life on the eastern banks of the Sea in view.

He must first believe on the One who died in his stead, with God then viewing the matter exactly as seen in the type in Exodus chapter twelve:

. . . when I see the blood, I will pass over you . . . . (Exodus 12:13)

Until a person has settled this matter, he can never be associated with anything other than Egypt and the things of that land.  But once he has settled this matter, a new land comes into view.  Once he has settled this matter, he finds himself associated with a land removed from Egypt.

But, there is still a problem.

And that still-existing problem is what Hebrews 6:7-8 is about.  Though redeemed man finds himself associated with a land removed from Egypt, the land of Egypt is not done away with.  The land of Egypt and all things appertaining thereunto remain in existence.

In this respect, though redeemed man possesses a new nature, the old nature is still present.  Matters are exactly as in the original type in Genesis 1:3-5 when God “commanded the light to shine out of darkness” (John 1:5; 2 Corinthians 4:6).  The darkness remained, though light now shined forth out of that darkness (ref. the author’s book, From Egypt to Canaan BOOK, Chapter 7, in this site).

Redeemed man thus finds himself in a position where he can go in either of two directions.  He can either fix his attention on the land out ahead, or he can turn and fix his attention on the land from which he was called.

Insofar as his eternal destiny is concerned, it could never make one iota of difference which direction he takes.  But, insofar as the hope of his calling — the purpose for his salvation — is concerned, it would make every difference.

Hebrews 6:7-8 presents man with a dual capacity in this realm.  That is, he possesses the capacity to go in either direction.  Thus, both textually and contextually, it is evident that the passage is dealing only with those who have passed “from death to life.”  Those remaining “dead in trespasses and sins” do not possess this dual capacity and cannot be in view at all.

(Man must be made alive “spiritually,” for “God is spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” [John 4:24 NASB, NIV].  Consequently, in order for man to find himself in a non-alienated state once again, he must, through divine intervention [for he himself is powerless to act], be restored “spiritually”; and this can be accomplished only through the spiritual birth from above.

John 4:24 has nothing to do with God in a physical sense, as the verse is often understood [stating, on the basis of this verse, that God does not have a physical existence].  The word “spirit” is anarthrous [no article before the word] in the Greek text, referring to God’s character [His essence, His being] rather than to His identity.  The expression is used in the same sense as another expression by John, “God is love” [1 John 4:16].  And the latter has no more to do with the physical than the former, or vice versa.  Both refer to God’s character.

The preceding, as well, shows the reason why the natural man finds himself alienated from God.  He, within the framework of his character, acts in the “natural,” for that is the only sphere in which it is possible for him to act.  But God, within the framework of His character, acts in the “spiritual,” never the “natural.”  And one is totally incompatible with the other.  Ishmael cannot act within the sphere occupied by Isaac.  It is impossible.

Thus, the “natural man” cannot worship God “in spirit and in truth”; nor can he exercise “faith,” apart from which it is impossible to please God [Hebrews 11:6].  Only the person having experienced the spiritual birth from above is in a position to do either.

But, such a person may or may not conduct his affairs in the spiritual realm, though Scripture, time after time, exhorts him to so do.  Those things that characterize his life may or may not be in line with those things that characterize God, though they should be.  He still possesses the old nature [the natural (soulical) man, connected with the earth], though he [unlike unredeemed man] also possesses the new nature [the spiritual man, connected with God, another land, etc.].  And a Christian is fully capable of following either nature, going in either direction.

Note that saved man functioning in the realm of the natural, the soulical, rather than the spiritual, can only bring forth exactly the same thing in relation to fruit bearing as unsaved man, for he is operating in connection with a cursed earth, the first birth, etc.  And God will always reject such works.

And for this reason Scripture is filled with spiritual lessons, exhortations, and warnings concerning the overall matter surrounding the Christians’ calling.  And herein, as well, lies the reason for the necessity of proper spiritual growth to maturity, for redeemed man invariably lives within the sphere of which ever nature is cultivated, nurtured, and fed.)

Blessings From God

Several lines of teaching can be drawn from Hebrews 6:7-8.  One would have to do with redeemed man in relation to two lands — one earthly, the other heavenly.  Another line of teaching would contrast the two lands themselves — one land having to do with our natural birth and the other with our spiritual birth.  However, the latter (referring to the two lands) would still have to be understood in conjunction with the former (referring to redeemed man), for one cannot be separated from the other.

1) The Land of Canaan

That heavenly land to which Christians under Christ have been called (in a place removed from the earth) is typified by the earthly land to which the Israelites under Moses were called (the land of Canaan).  And the land from which the Israelites were called (Egypt) would typify the land from which Christians have been called (the earth).

Just as the Israelites were to separate themselves from Egypt and fix their attention on the land set before them, Christians are to separate themselves from this world and fix their attention on the land set before them.

Both callings thus concern two lands — one from which the person has been called, and the other to which the person has been called; and God draws spiritual lessons from the former calling (the Israelites under Moses) to teach His people great spiritual truths concerning the latter calling (Christians under Christ).

The land of Canaan was the place wherein the Israelites under Moses could realize both a “rest” and an “inheritance” (Deuteronomy 12:9).  God said of the land of Canaan,

but the land which you cross over to possess is a land of hills and valleys, which drinks water from the rain of heaven,

a land for which the LORD your God cares; the eyes of the LORD your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year. (Deuteronomy 11:11-12)

“Rain,” in this respect, is associated with God’s blessings.  In Deuteronomy 32:2, the Lord states,

Let My teaching drop as the rain, My speech distill as the dew, as raindrops on the tender herb, and as showers on the grass.

Then, during the coming Messianic Era the presence or absence of “rain” is associated with the presence or absence of blessings.  On the one hand, the prophesied “latter rain” is associated with blessings for Israel, which will result in blessings for the Gentile nations (Joel 2:23); and, on the other hand, the absence of “rain” is associated with a withholding of blessings from these nations (Zechariah 14:17-19).

(Though the land of Canaan is part of the earth, which is under a curse, it is used in an eschatological sense within the framework of the type [referring to that day when the earth will be removed from the present curse].  In this respect, it is used relative to both the rest set before Christians [to be realized in that coming seventh day, the earth’s coming Sabbath] and a land contrasted with Egypt [always a type of the world in Scripture].  In the latter respect, the land of Canaan would be associated with “the spiritual” and the land of Egypt with “the natural.”)

Thus, the land of Canaan corresponds to the land of Hebrews 6:7, which “drinks in the rain that often comes upon it,” which “receives blessings from God.”  And the land of Canaan (to which the Israelites under Moses were called) is set forth as a type of that heavenly land (to which Christians under Christ have been called).

Contextually, this verse would have to do with those who have been allowed to go on to maturity within the framework of Hebrews 6:1-6, remaining faithful to their calling.  The blessings in view would have to do with being enlightened concerning the things out ahead — tasting “the heavenly gift . . . the good Word of God and the powers of the age to come” — and with being made “partakers [‘companions’] of the Holy Spirit” in these matters, as He leads individuals “into all truth” (Hebrews 6:4-5; John 16:13).

And further, contextually, the verse would have to do with that coming day when Christ will be the great King-Priest “after the order of Melchizedek” (Hebrews 5:5-14).  That will be the day when the blessings of God will find their ultimate fulfillment insofar as man on the present earth is concerned.  In that day the blessings of God will flow out through the Seed of Abraham to the Gentile nations from both heavenly and earthly spheres.  And the Seed of Abraham, in that day, will dwell in these lands (heavenly and earthly), corresponding to the land of Hebrews 6:7.

2) Caleb and Joshua

Caleb and Joshua — two of the Israelites under Moses at Kadesh-Barnea, and two of the twelve spies sent in to obtain a report concerning the land of Canaan — had a proper respect for God’s calling and the land set before them.  All twelve of the spies first presented a uniform report to Israel concerning the land (a land flowing with “milk and honey [they had brought back some of the actual fruits of the land for the people to see],” but strong Gentile nations, infiltrated by the Nephilim, dwelled in the land).

Then Caleb, with the support of Joshua, apart from the other ten, “quieted the people before Moses” and exhorted them after a positive fashion (Numbers 13:26-29; cf. Numbers 13:33):

Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it. (Numbers 13:30)

Though the enemy was stronger and more numerous than the Israelites, Caleb and Joshua believed that which God had to say concerning their calling and the land set before them.

They had seen God’s previous dealings with the Egyptians the night of the Passover (Exodus 12:29ff), they had seen God’s miraculous parting of the waters of the Red Sea (Exodus 14:21-22), they had seen God’s destruction of the Egyptian army in the Red Sea (Exodus 14:23-28), they had seen God’s provision of food and water in the wilderness (Exodus 16:4-18; 17:1-7), and they had seen God’s continued provision of victory over anyone who stood in the way of their march toward Sinai and their subsequent march toward the land of Canaan (Exodus 17:8-14).

(In fact, God’s attitude toward anyone standing in Israel’s way was such that He not only completely destroyed the Egyptian army that moved into the sea after Israel [“Not so much as one of them remained.” (Exodus 14:28)], but He pronounced a terminal, annihilating judgment upon the “first of the nations” [Numbers 24:20] to war against Israel in the wilderness.  God said to Moses:

Write this for a memorial in the book and recount it in the hearing of Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. [Exodus 17:14].

The Amalekite nation existed for hundreds of years following the Exodus under Moses [continuing to exist throughout this time because of the failure of the Israelites to carry out their God-appointed task as executioners of the Amalekites (Deuteronomy 25:17-19; 1 Samuel 15:2-26; 2 Samuel 1:1-16; cf. Revelation 3:11)].  But, during the days of Hezekiah, this nation was ultimately destroyed after the fashion that God had stated centuries earlier, at the time of the Exodus [1 Chronicles 4:39-43].  And, as a consequence, the only available record today that this nation ever even existed can be found only one place — in the pages of Scripture.

Secular history knows nothing of the Amalekites, for God destroyed this nation to the extent that man, in his secular world today [archaeology, etc.], can find no trace whatsoever of the people of this nation.)

Caleb and Joshua had seen and experienced these things; and they knew that it was through the Lord’s strength and power, not their own, that deliverance or provision had been forthcoming at every point.  The Lord had slain the firstborn in Egypt (Exodus 12:12), the Lord had destroyed the Egyptian army, and the Lord was the One who warred with Amalek (eventually blotting him out of existence [Exodus 17:14-16]).  And the Lord was the One who, as well, over the previous one and one-half years, had miraculously provided food and water in the wilderness for the Israelites (Exodus 16:4; 17:5-7).

Thus, for Caleb and Joshua (and it should have been the same for the remainder of the nation), it was really a simple matter to look out ahead to the land set before them and believe, regardless of the strength of the land’s inhabitants or the comparative weakness and seeming inability of the Israelites, that the people of Israel could “go up at once, and possess it.”  The people of Israel would be “well able to overcome it,” but not in their own strength and power.  They, as before, would have to rely upon the Lord, with His strength and power; and by so doing, through faith in the Lord, nothing could stand in their way as they marched into the land and victoriously engaged the enemy.

But there was another side to the matter, and that was the attitude exhibited by the ten remaining spies, with their “evil report.”  They, in a faithless manner, overlooking all God’s works that had preceded, said to the Israelites,

We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we. (Numbers 13:31)

It is these two reports, with the resulting action of Caleb and Joshua on the one hand and the remainder of the nation on the other, which establish a basis for much of that which is taught in Hebrews 3-6.  And nearing the end of this whole section, in Hebrews 6:7-8, these two totally incompatible ways in which the Israelites viewed the land set before them (typifying the two totally incompatible ways Christians can view the land set before them) are set forth in a very simple illustration, drawn from nature.

Within one sphere, there is acceptance, followed by blessings; within the other, there is rejection, followed by curses.  And no middle ground lies between the two (cf. Matthew 12:30).  Thus, these two verses outline the only two options open to any Christian:

1) That of one day coming into a realization of his calling (Hebrews 6:7), associated with acceptance and blessings.

2) Or, that of one day being overthrown short of the goal of his calling (Hebrews 6:8), associated with rejection and curses.

Rejected . . . 

The land of Canaan is set forth, on the one hand, corresponding to the land of Hebrews 6:7, associated with blessings from God; then it is set forth, on the other hand, as being sharply contrasted with the land of Egypt, which corresponds to the earth under a curse.  And though the curse will be lifted for one thousand years (during the coming Messianic Era), at the end of this time “the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up” (cf. 2 Peter 3:10-13).

It is the land of Egypt that corresponds to the land in Hebrews 6:8 — that which bears “thorns and briers . . . whose end is to be burned [set in sharp contrast to the land and its related fruit in Hebrews 6:7].”  And “the land of Egypt” is a type of the world in which man presently lives — a world under a curse, which brings forth “thorns and thistles” (Genesis 3:17-18).

Whether it be the earth under a curse or natural man connected with the earth, insofar as God is concerned, there can only be total, complete rejection.  That which bears thorns and briers is rejected.

The reference in Hebrews though is not to unredeemed man on the earth (although he has been rejected).  The reference is to redeemed man who looks to that land that bears “thorns and briers” (Hebrews 6:8) rather than to that land that brings forth “herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated” (Hebrews 6:7).  The reference is to the antitype of those Israelites under Moses at Kadesh-Barnea who believed the evil report of the ten spies concerning the land of Canaan, causing them to look back to Egypt rather than out ahead to the land of their calling (Numbers 13:31-14:4).

These Israelites looked back to a land that bore “thorns and briers” rather than out ahead to a land that brought forth “herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated.”  And their subsequent overthrow in the wilderness was completely in line with that which God had to say about Egypt, the land to which they had sought to return.  Relative to their calling and the land set before them (called out of Egypt to dwell in the land of Canaan as God’s firstborn son, within a theocracy), they were “rejected.”  They were overthrown in the wilderness, short of this goal.

And the warning to Christians is that they can, by following the same example, only suffer the same fate.  Eternally saved?  Yes!  But, just as the Israelites under Moses were overthrown on the right side of the blood at a place short of the goal of their calling, so can Christians under Christ be overthrown at the same place, for the same reason, after the identical fashion (cf. 1 Corinthians 9:24-10:11).

1) Righteous Lot

The experiences of “righteous” Lot (2 Peter 2:7-8) form another Old Testament type — from a different perspective — concerning redeemed man’s calling from the world to a land removed from the world.  And, within this account, the type is quite instructive concerning the inability of a carnal, worldly person (though redeemed) to act in any depth at all within the “spiritual.”

Lot was among those whom Abraham rescued in the battle of the kings in Genesis 14.  And, from the record, it seems apparent that Lot was with Abraham when Melchizedek came forth with bread and wine following this battle.

However, it was Abraham alone who was blessed by Melchizedek and was allowed to understand enough about that which was happening to make him lose all interest in the things that the world had to offer (Genesis 14:18-24).

(One aspect of the preceding type would prevent Lot from entering into these experiences, for he was not of Abraham’s seed.  But the aspect of the type being viewed is that of two saved individuals in Melchizedek’s presence, not God’s covenant dealings and promises to Abraham and his seed.

Note one facet of teaching from this aspect of the type relative to Christians in the coming kingdom.  All will be present when Christ exercises the Melchizedek priesthood, but not all will be blessed.)

Abraham and Lot, in this respect, would fit within the framework of Hebrews 6:1-6.  One was allowed to go on into an understanding of the things surrounding Melchizedek, but not so with the other.  Viewing their individual backgrounds, the reason becomes evident; and viewing that which occurred in the lives of these two men in subsequent years, the end result is quite instructive.

Abraham lived in “the plains of Mamre,” near Hebron, located in the mountainous terrain of the high country (Genesis 13:18; 14:13; 18:1; 23:17-19; 35:27).  Lot, on the other hand, lived in Sodom, in “the plain of Jordan,” in the low-lying country (Genesis 13:10-12; 14:12; 19:1).

The difference in these two places would be similar to the difference between Jerusalem and Jericho.  Jerusalem was located in the mountainous terrain of the high country, but Jericho was located near the lowest point in the land (actually, on earth), near the Dead Sea at the southern end of the Jordan plain (where Sodom and the other cities of the plain are believed to have once existed).

Jerusalem and Jericho are set in sharp contrast to one another in Scripture.  One is “the city of the great King,” from which blessings for the nations of the earth will flow during the coming age (Psalm 48:2; Zechariah 14:1-21); but “a curse” rests upon the other (Joshua 6:18, 26).  And the two places where Abraham and Lot lived are set in similar sharp contrast.

Lot’s downward path can be seen in different places from Genesis 13:10 to Genesis 19:1, and the results of his downward path can be seen in Genesis 14:12-24; 19:1-38.

Lot “lifted up his eyes, and saw all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere . . . .”  He then “chose for himself all the plain of Jordan . . . dwelt in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent even as far as Sodom.”  And in the process of doing this, he separated himself from Abraham (Genesis 13:10-12).  That is, the carnal believer separated himself from the spiritual believer.

The day came when Lot got into trouble and had to be rescued by Abraham (Genesis 14:12-16).  But his long association with the cities of the plain could only have prevented him from seeing beyond the “letter” when Melchizedek subsequently appeared, following the battle of the kings (Genesis 14:18-24); and his failure to see beyond the “letter,” coupled with his long prior association with the cities of the plain, eventually resulted in his not only again living in Sodom but also in his being actively involved within the affairs of the city (Genesis 19:1 [affairs of a city were carried on by men seated at the gate, as was Lot]).

Abraham, during this same time though, dwelled in the high country, removed from the cities of the plain.  And, apart from instances such as his rescue of Lot and his intercession on behalf of the righteous in Sodom (Genesis 14:14-16; 18:23-33), the affairs of the people in the Jordan plain were of no moment to him.

Thus, when the day arrived for the destruction of the cities of the plain — as the day will arrive for the destruction of the present world system — two completely contrasting saved individuals can be seen.  And that’s what is in view in Hebrews 6:7-8, along with fruit bearing in each sphere — one of value, the other worthless (cf. 1 Corinthians 3:12).

Some Christians have been allowed to go on and see that which is taught concerning Melchizedek.  Consequently, their interest doesn’t lie in the things of the Jordan plain but in the things of the high country.  And they dwell where their interest lies.

Other Christians though, as Lot, have not been allowed to go on and see that which is taught concerning Melchizedek (and, invariably, for the same reason set forth in Lot’s life).  Consequently, their interest doesn’t lie in the things of the high country but in those things of the valley instead.  And they too dwell where their interest lies.

2) Escape From Sodom

The Jordan plain with its cities was destroyed during Abraham and Lot’s day by “brimstone and fire” from heaven (Genesis 19:24, 25; cf. Deuteronomy 29:23).  And though Lot was delivered from Sodom prior to this destruction, his deliverance was, as in the words of 1 Corinthians 3:15, “so as through fire.”

Prior to this destruction, Lot was placed outside Sodom and commanded,

Escape for your life! Do not look behind you nor stay anywhere in the plain. Escape to the mountain, lest you be destroyed. (Genesis 19:17)

Note what’s involved in this four-part command.  First, “Escape for you life [‘soul’].”

This is the saving of the soul/life.  Physical life in this instance?  Yes!  But far more than just the physical is involved, as becomes evident from the remainder of the command.

The next three parts relate how the soul/life can be saved:

1) “Do not look behind you” (cf. Luke 9:62; Hebrews 12:1-2).

2) “nor stay anywhere in the plain” (don’t remain in the low-lying country [equivalent to Egypt]).

3) “Escape to the mountain” (a “mountain” is used in Scripture symbolizing a kingdom, particularly Christ’s coming Kingdom [cf. Isaiah 2:1-5; Daniel 2:35, 44-45; Matthew 17:1-5]).

(Note:  Contrary to some English translations, the word “mountain” in the Hebrew text is singular, as in the KJV.  The reference is to a “mountain” symbolizing a kingdom, not to “mountains” symbolizing kingdoms.  A distinction between “mountain” and “mountains” in this respect can be seen in Isaiah 2:2-3:

. . . the mountain of the LORD'S house [the kingdom of Christ] shall be established on the top of the mountains [all the individual earthly kingdoms] . . . .”)

The escape from the plain to the mountain is an escape from Egypt to Canaan — to that land associated with the coming kingdom.  This is where one’s attention is to be centered.  This is where he is to dwell.

Then the last part of the verse relates that which will happen to a person should he not follow the Lord’s command in this respect:  “lest you be destroyed.”  That is, he will be destroyed by that which will itself be destroyed; and, as a consequence, he will lose his soul/life.

Lot though had no concept of that which was being stated; and, in reality, even though the Lord had given him this four-part command, he couldn’t follow it.

His spiritual senses had not been sufficiently developed or exercised.  He could do no more than act after a carnal fashion, which he did (Genesis 19:19-20).  And this is the apparent reason why the Lord, apart from remonstrance, honored his request to be allowed to go to Zoar instead of the mountain (Genesis 19:21-23).

However, Zoar — a city in the plain, spared for Lot — wasn’t the last stop.  After the destruction of the other cities of the plain, Lot became afraid to dwell in Zoar and moved out into the mountain to which he had previously been commanded to escape.

But, unlike Abraham, Lot dwelled on the mountain in “a cave” (Genesis 19:30) rather than standing in a place “before the Lord” (Genesis 19:27; cf. Genesis 18:22).  He, in effect, dwelled in a place of shame rather than in a place of honor.

And therein is the account of two pilgrims who governed their lives after two entirely different fashions, one day arriving at the same destination and finding themselves occupying diametrically opposed positions, completely commensurate with the fashion in which they had governed their lives during their previous pilgrim journey.

Thus will it be with Christians on the Mountain in that coming day.
Chapter Seven
Things that Accompany Salvation

But, beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you, yes, things that accompany salvation, though we speak in this manner.

For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love that you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.

And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end,

that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises. (Hebrews 6:9-12)

In the third of the five major warnings in Hebrews, the writer first dealt with the negative side of matters.  He began by revealing that the recipients of his message were spiritually immature (Hebrews 5:11-14).  Then, immediately following, he exhorted these spiritually immature Christians to “go on to perfection [‘maturity’]” (Hebrews 6:1-6).

Continuing from this point, by way of illustration, drawing from nature, he looked at both sides of the matter from both positive and negative aspects (Hebrews 6:7-8).  Then, the writer turned entirely to the positive side to finish the exhortation that he had begun in verse one (Hebrews 6:9-12).

Verse nine could perhaps be better understood by translating:

But, beloved, though we are speaking this way, we are persuaded better things of you, things that accompany [i.e., things that have to do with] salvation.” (ref. NIV)

Concerning that to which the writer referred — that which he had been speaking about — he had begun by dealing with the fact that the recipients of his message were “dull of hearing,” babes in Christ (Hebrews 5:11-14).  Then he dealt with exhorting Christians to go on to maturity (Hebrews 6:1-2), though God may not allow some Christians to go on (Hebrews 6:3).  And the reason God may not allow some to go on is then given — the possibility of a Christian who had been allowed to go on to maturity later falling away, resulting in shame and reproach being brought upon Christ (Hebrews 6:4-6).

And the writer then called attention to a type of fruit bearing from the world of nature to illustrate the preceding.  Such could only be comparable to bringing forth “thorns and briers,” which would be “rejected . . . whose end is to be burned” (Hebrews 6:8).

But before paralleling falling away with the thought of bringing forth fruit comparable to “thorns and briers,” the writer introduced another type fruit bearing — comparable to bringing forth “herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated” (Hebrews 6:7) — anticipating the positive side of the matter that is continued in Hebrews 6:9.

The nurturing source for this type fruit is “the rain [from heaven],” and this fruit is associated with “blessings from God.”  And both the nurturing source and the blessings come from above (cf. John 3:3, 5; 1 John 2:29; 3:9; 5:1-5).  The thought has to do with fruit bearing through the proper nurturing source, followed by blessings from God.

Contextually, for a Christian, this would have to do with drinking in the Water of life, the Word of God, which comes from above (cf. John 2:6-9; 4:14); and, through normal growth and activity after this fashion (feeding upon the Word, and, at the same time, allowing works to emanate out of faith [faithfulness]), the individual would mature in the faith and bring forth fruit of a proper kind.  That is, as illustrated from the world of nature, he would bring forth “herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated” rather than “thorns and briers.”

Better Things

The recipients of this message were exhorted to leave the infantile things upon which they had been feeding and go on unto maturity.  They were exhorted to stop laying foundations and begin building upon the foundational truths that they had already been taught (Hebrews 6:1-2).  And the writer was persuaded “better things” of them than a falling away in the process, with its corresponding fruit bearing, described by the words, “thorns and briers” (Hebrews 6:3-9).

Within the text, “better things” are the “things that accompany [‘have to do with’] salvation.”  One parallels the other in this respect.

Or, to state the matter another way, that which is encompassed within the expression “better things” from verse nine is associated with fruit bearing from verse seven, which, in turn, is intimately connected with works from verse ten (works emanating out of faithfulness, resulting in fruit bearing of a proper type); and the goal in view — through this interrelated process of faith and works, resulting in fruit bearing — is “salvation” (Hebrews 6:9).

Viewing the matter within the revealed scope or fashion, one should easily be able to see what salvation is in view.  It can’t be the salvation presently possessed by every Christian (Ephesians 2:8-9; Hebrews 1:3), for our presently possessed salvation cannot, after any fashion, be associated with man’s works, with fruit bearing.  The salvation presently possessed by every Christian is a free gift that rests entirely upon the finished work of Christ.  And not only has this work been completed, but God is satisfied with His Son’s finished work.  Nothing can ever be added or taken away (John 19:30).

The salvation referred to in Hebrews 6:9 is the same salvation to which the writer referred earlier in the warning (Hebrews 5:9).  And, prior to that, he had referred to this salvation as “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3).  Then later in the book he refers to this salvation in connection with Christ’s return (Hebrews 9:27-28).  And then after that he refers to the same salvation as “the saving of the soul” (Hebrews 10:38-39).

The salvation in view is connected with a future inheritance (Hebrews 1:2, 14), which is acquired “through faith and patience” (Hebrews 6:12, 15).  It is “the hope set before us,” which is “an anchor of the soul” (Hebrews 6:18-19).

This is the salvation with which Hebrews concerns itself throughout.  The entire book deals with this salvation, not with the salvation that Christians presently possess.  And when an individual grasps this fundamental truth, not only will the book of Hebrews begin to open to his understanding but so will numerous other sections of Scripture as well.

1) Salvation By Grace Through Faith

Let it forever be said that a Christian’s presently possessed eternal salvation was acquired completely separate from any works or merit on unredeemed man’s part.  Works or merit, pertaining to eternal salvation, all have to do with Christ’s finished work at Calvary; and man is saved solely on the basis of that which Christ has done, not on the basis of anything that man has done, is doing, or will ever do.

The simple fact is that Christ completed the work, in its entirety, because unredeemed man is totally incapable of acting in this realm, even in the minutest degree.  Not only is he dead, rendering him powerless to act, but he is also alienated from God.  And apart from Christ’s action on his behalf, he would forever remain in his present dead, alienated state (Ephesians 2:1, 12).

To illustrate man’s inability to act in this realm, refer to a Greek word used in 1 Corinthians 15:52 — the word atomos, from which we derive our English word “atom.”  The word is translated in this verse, “a moment.”  The reference is to the length of the time which will elapse within the scope of Christians being removed from the earth (raised from the dead and translated) and appearing in the Lord’s presence in the air.  This will occur in an atomos of time, further described as comparable to the time-lapse in “the twinkling of an eye.”

The word atomos has to do with “minuteness”; and in 1 Corinthians 15:52 it refers to the smallest unit into which time can be divided, beyond which there can be no further division.  A microsecond (one millionth of a second) is a common expression used in our computerized world today.  But there are divisions beyond that — a billionth of a second, a trillionth of a second, etc.

Atomos, in 1 Corinthians 15:52, referring to “time,” goes to the farthest point conceivable.  This word refers to a particle of time so minute that the only way to really describe it is through the use of the word atomos itself.  That is how fast the future resurrection and translation of Christians will occur.

Now, bring the word atomos over into the realm of works.  Insofar as man’s eternal salvation is concerned, he cannot do even an atomos of work in this realm.  It is impossible for him to perform even the most minute particle of any type of work conceivable, for, in the spiritual realm, he is dead

And salvation, in its totality, has to do with a spiritual birth from above — a realm in which unredeemed man is totally incapable of acting.  In order for man to act in the spiritual, to even a degree described by the word atomos, he first has to be made alive spiritually.  He first has to pass “from death to life” (John 5:24).  And this is effected through — only and completely through — the birth from above.

All man can do is receive that which has already been done on his behalf.  He can do no more than “believe on [put his trust, reliance in]” the One who has performed the Work on his behalf.  This is the clear testimony of Scripture from the opening verses of Genesis (depicting events that occurred 4,000 years preceding Calvary [and also prior to this period]) to the closing verses of Revelation (depicting events that will occur 3,000 years following Calvary [and also after this period]).

God’s means for redeeming fallen man never change throughout Scripture.  God established a first-mention principle relative to the matter at the very beginning of His revelation to man, in the opening verses of chapter one of Genesis; and once the matter had been established after this fashion, no change could ever occur.

Scripture, at the very beginning, presents the matter of man’s passage “from death to life” as a work performed entirely through divine intervention.  The Spirit moved, God spoke, and light came into existence (Genesis 1:2-3 [2b]).  The ruined creation (Genesis 1:2a) had no part in the matter at the beginning, and a subsequent ruined creation (man) can have no part in the matter at any later point in time (ref. the author’s book, From Egypt to Canaan BOOK, chapters 5-8, in this site).

To say that individuals were saved or will be saved via other means in either past or future dispensations (through keeping the law, through any type of works, etc.) is a total misunderstanding of that which God has established as unchangeable at the very beginning of His Word.

Unsaved man simply cannot act in the spiritual realm.  Such is impossible.  And there is no such thing as man, at any point in his history (past, present, or future) being partly saved and able to perform works to complete his salvation.  It is either all or nothing.  Man has either passed from death to life” or he is still dead.

As stated in Jonah 2:9, “Salvation is of the LORD.”  It has always been that way, it remains that way today, and it always will be that way.

2) Salvation of the Soul

The salvation of the soul though is another matter entirely.  The spiritual birth from above — salvation by grace through faith — has to do with man’s spirit, not with his soul.  Redeemed man, a trichotomous being, has a redeemed spirit, an unredeemed soul (that part of man that is in the process of being redeemed), and an unredeemed body (not presently being redeemed, as the soul, but to be redeemed at Christ’s return).

Insofar as man’s spirit is concerned, salvation is a finished matter.  This is the part of man that was made alive at the time of the birth from above (Ephesians 2:1, 5, 8).  Then, redeemed man’s soul is in the process of being saved (cf. 1 Corinthians 1:18; Hebrews 1:14; 10:36-39), a salvation to be realized in its completeness (or not realized) at the time Christians appear before the judgment seat of Christ at the end of the present dispensation (1 Peter 1:4-9).

And the salvation — “redemption” — of the body is future as well and will be realized at the time of the adoption (actually, the structure of the Greek text in Romans 8:23 shows the redemption of the body to be synonymous with the adoption), which is part and parcel with the saving of the soul.

Thus man, as a trichotomous being, has been saved, is being saved, and is about to be saved.  Salvation, within its complete scope, is not only past but is also present and future as well.

However, one must exercise care when dealing with these different aspects of salvation so as not to confuse one with the other.  Verses of Scripture that pertain to one must not be removed from their contexts and applied to the other.  If this is done, the end result will be two-fold:

1) Confusion concerning the salvation message on the one hand.

2) Corruption, distortion, or destruction of parts or the whole of the salvation message on the other hand.

For example, the salvation of the spirit is dependent entirely upon the finished work of Christ at Calvary, but the salvation of the soul is dependent on the works of the individual who has passed “from death to life.”  Such works though must emanate out of faithfulness (James 2:14-26) — faithfulness exercised by the one now in a position to act in the spiritual realm — and it is these works (or lack of these works, resulting from unfaithfulness) which will come under review at the judgment seat (cf. 1 Corinthians 3:11-15).

And one can easily see what would happen if a person took Scriptures having to do with the present aspect of salvation and applied them to the past aspect of salvation, or vice versa.  Man’s works would either be brought over into an area where works of this nature cannot exist (brought over into the message of salvation by grace through faith), or such works would be rendered meaningless by trying to place the message of salvation by grace through faith (where man’s works cannot exist) within the present aspect of salvation (where man’s works must be operative).

(The preceding would be comparable to going to God’s work of restoring the ruined creation in Genesis 1 and moving His works from day one into His works in days two through six, or vice versa.

On day one, the earth was entirely passive, for the earth was completely incapable, in and of itself, of effecting restoration.  All was of divine intervention — the Spirit of God moved, God spoke, and light came into existence [Genesis 1:2-5 (2b)].  But once the light had begun to shine out of the darkness [John 1:5; 2 Corinthians 4:6] and the earth had emerged from its watery grave, the earth began to bring forth [Genesis 1:9-11].

And so it is with ruined man.  Divine intervention has to occur first, allowing light to shine out of darkness and man to be removed from his watery grave, so to speak.  Only then can he, as the earth, bring forth.

These things must be viewed and understood in the same divine framework and order in which they were established in an unchangeable fashion in the opening verses of Genesis.)

Through the salvation effected by the birth from above (which has to do with the spirit), man has been placed in a position where he can perform works acceptable or pleasing to God (which has to do with the soul).  Works are now possible, for he now has spiritual life and can exercise faith in the realm from which man’s works can ensue.

That is, after he has passed “from death to life” he can then exercise faith in his spiritual life — a life that he did not possess prior to the birth from above — and works, pleasing to God, can emanate out of faithfulness of this nature.

It is this aspect of salvation with which the book of Hebrews deals.  The warnings apply to the saving or the losing of the soul, never the spirit.  The former can be forfeited, but not the latter; and a person must be in possession of the latter before anything in the former would even apply in his life.

(For a comprehensive treatment of the overall subject of the saving of the soul, see the author’s books, Salvation of the Soul BOOK and From Egypt to Canaan BOOK, both in this site.)

Work And Labor Of Love

The “better things” being manifested by those whom the writer addressed in verse nine of chapter six are described through the use of two words in verse ten — work and love.  They were manifesting a “work and labor of love” with respect to Christ through ministering to other Christians.

Such a ministry could take any number of forms — from giving “a cup of water” to “teaching and admonishing one another” (Mark 9:41; Colossians 3:16).  And there is an underlying principle upon which the inseparable connection between ministering with respect to Christ and ministering to others rests (as in Hebrews 6:10), which is clearly revealed in Matthew 25:31-46.

The passage in gospel of Matthew has to do with a judgment of two classes of saved Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation, and the revealed principle remains unchanged.  This principle is the same in the gospel of Matthew, the book of Hebrews, or any other place and time in Scripture that touches on the matter.  It is an unchangeable part of the unchangeable Word.

According to Matthew 25:34ff, these Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation will be judged on the basis of specific works, necessitating either faith or the lack of faith preceding their works or their lack of works.  And they, accordingly, will have previously been divided into two groups (Matthew 25:33):

1) Those exercising faith, with works following.

2) Those not exercising faith, with no works following.

Christ will judge the faithful first, on the basis of their works (Matthew 25:34-40).  After that, He will judge the unfaithful, on the basis of the absence of works (Matthew 25:41-46).

Neither judgment will have anything whatsoever to do with the eternal salvation of those being judged (no more so than issues at the judgment seat of Christ will have to do with a Christian’s eternal salvation).  The entirety of the judgment surrounding both groups will occur solely on the basis of the works of those being judged (something that can never have anything to do with man’s eternal salvation).  But note the principle drawn from the judgment of both groups.

Both groups are judged solely on the basis of their actions (dispensing or not dispensing meat, drink; ministering or not ministering to others).  And note that metaphors are being used throughout — sheep, goats, meat, drink — the same as previously seen different places earlier in the same discourse (Matthew 24:45-25:30).

Then the principle is clearly given:  By those in one group, the faithful, ministering in this manner, they had ministered to Christ Himself.  That is, they had accorded Christ the same treatment that they accorded those to whom they had ministered (Matthew 25:37-40).

The same thing is again taught — though from a negative aspect — relative to Christ’s dealings with the second group, the unfaithful.  Those in this group had not ministered in the same manner at all.  There was no exercise of faith, with no works issuing forth.

And the principle is again clearly revealed, though reversed: by not exercising faith, with no ministry following, these individuals, unlike the faithful, had not ministered to Christ.  That is, they had accorded Christ the same treatment that they had rendered to those to whom they had been called to minister (Matthew 25:44-45).

(For additional information on Matthew 25:31-46, refer to the author’s book, The Most High Ruleth BOOK, Chapter 3, in this site.)

In Hebrews 6:10 the principle remains the same.  Through ministering “to the saints” these Christians had shown the same “work and labor of love” “toward His [Christ’s] name.”  That is, in the light of the way that the matter is set forth in Matthew 25:34ff, they, in reality, were ministering to Christ Himself through their ministry to the saints.

These Christians were performing works because of their love for the brethren.  But these works were not emanating out of love per se.  Rather, these works, along with the manifested love, were emanating out of faith.

“Faith” must come first; and even though love is placed above faith in the sense of greatness (1 Corinthians 13:13), love cannot exist apart from faith.  This is fundamental and primary.  Apart from faith there can be neither love for the brethren nor a ministry to the brethren.  The matter must be viewed as it is seen in Hebrews chapter eleven:

“By faith Abel . . . By faith Enoch . . . By faith Noah . . . .”  The entire pilgrim walk is as stated in Romans 1:17:

. . . from faith to faith:  as it is written.  The just shall live by faith. (cf. Habakkuk 2:4)

And the entirety of the matter is about the saving of the soul.  Note the two verses leading into Hebrews 11:

Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone [if any of the just, exercising faith] draws back [stops exercising faith], My soul has no pleasure in him.

But we are not of those who draw back to perdition [‘destruction,’ ‘ruin’], but of those who believe to the saving of the soul [lit., ‘of faith with respect to a saving of the soul’]. (Hebrews 10:38-39)

Then chapter eleven continues, without any type of break,

Now faith [contextually, to a saving of the soul] is . . . .” (Hebrews 11:1)

Consequently, there must first be “faith” (i.e., “faithfulness” on the part of the individual — simply “believing” that which God has said).  Then “love” and resulting “works” can issue forth.  Love is the motivator for the works, but the source for love is the same as the source for works.  They both emanate out of faith (cf. James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:9).

Full Assurance Of Hope

The recipients of this message had been praised for their “work and labor of love” (Hebrews 6:10), and their actions were mentioned after this fashion for a purpose.  Immediately following, in Hebrews 6:11-12, the writer uses their faithfulness in this realm in order to exhort them in another realm.  He turns from one thought to another, and the thought to which he turns is the same thought that is emphasized over and over throughout the epistle.  At this point in the book it is seen to be — both textually and contextually — his one driving, burning desire underlying everything that he wrote in the epistle.

In order to grasp the full force of the writer’s frame of mind and that which is being said, note the word “desire.”  In the Greek text, the preposition epi is prefixed to the word translated “desire” in the English text (forming epithumeo), intensifying the word.  A more literal rendering when bringing the thought conveyed by the intensified Greek word over into English would be, “earnestly desire.”

Note, for example, the difference between how the word agonizomai (strive) is used in Luke 13:24 without the preposition epi prefixed and in Jude 1:3 with the preposition prefixed.  In Luke the word is simply translated “strive,” but in Jude the word is translated “earnestly contend [or, ‘earnestly strive’].”  The passages set forth a striving with respect to entering the “strait gate,” and an earnest striving with respect to “the faith.”

Hebrews 6:11 reveals an earnest desire on the part of the writer to see those to whom he was writing expressing the same diligence in their lives “to [‘toward,’ or, ‘with respect to’] the full assurance of hope” that they had shown in their “work and labor of love” among the saints.  He called attention to their present positive actions as they ministered among the saints and exhorted them to manifest the same positive actions with respect to “the full assurance of hope.”

What though is meant by “the full assurance of hope”?  This is the heart of the matter, with the whole thought turning on these words.

The words “full assurance” is the translation of a Greek word that conveys the thought of full conviction, certainty, assurance wrought through understanding.  Note the same word in this respect as it is used in Colossians 2:2 and Hebrews 10:22.  In Colossians 2:2, the word “understanding” is really not part of the strict definition though.  But the thought would have to be there by implication, for there could be no confident conviction or confident assurance apart from an understanding of the matter in view.

And, viewing the context, the whole overall thought of “understanding” could only fit perfectly within that which is stated in Hebrews 6:11, for the verse appears toward the end of a section in which the main thrust of the entire matter has to do with an exhortation to “go on to perfection [‘maturity’]” (Hebrews 6:1ff).  The end result of this maturity is presented in Hebrews 6:11 (further explained in Hebrews 6:12) as bringing them into a position where they could understand and, consequently, have a confident, expectant conviction of the hope set before them (in the sense of one day realizing this hope).

The “hope” itself is simply that blessed hope from Titus 2:13, associated with the “appearing of the glory of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ” (ASV).  In Titus 1:2; 3:7 this hope is clearly revealed to be associated with an inheritance awaiting the saved that will be realized in the coming age.

Note Titus 3:7.  There is first a justification; then there is an inheritance awaiting the justified, connected with the “hope of eternal life.”  The words “eternal life,” from aionios in the Greek text, could be better translated “life for the age” in this passage.  This word is used different places in the Greek text in the sense of both “eternal” and “age-lasting,” and the manner in which it is used in any given passage will always be governed by its textual usage.

(For additional information on the preceding, refer to the author’s book, Salvation of the Soul BOOK, Chapter 6, “Hope, Inheritance, Salvation.”)

The manner in which aionios is used in Titus 3:7 is evident.  The justified (those in possession of eternal life) cannot be made “heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”  There is no “hope” connected with eternal life (the salvation of the spirit, which is ours through simply believing on the Lord Jesus Christ [John 3:16]).  “Hope” is something that may or may not be realized, and “hope” in Scripture is connected with the saving of the soul, life for the age, the inheritance awaiting Christians (e.g., cf. Hebrews 6:18-19; 10:23, 36-39 [Hebrews 10:23 should literally read, “Let us hold fast the confession of the hope . . . .”]).

And this “hope” is exactly where the writer of Hebrews wanted those to whom he was writing to fix their attention.  He earnestly desired that every one of them would show the same diligence that they were expressing in their “work and labor of loveto a full conviction and expectation of the hope set before them.  And he wanted them to hold this conviction and expectation “unto the end.”

(One can easily see, from these verses, a parallel problem existing in Christendom today.  Christians involve themselves in numerous ministries — some with “diligence” — but how many of these same Christians know anything about “the full assurance of hope”?  How many exhibit the same “diligence” in this realm?)

Through Faith And Patience

Continuing with this same line of thought, the writer called attention to something that he had previously stated (cf. Hebrews 5:11; 6:12); and he then brought the exhortation to a close (Hebrews 5:12), prior to once again going back to the Old Testament Scriptures to furnish the background and support for the subject under discussion (Hebrews 5:13ff).

Those being addressed were spiritually immature, but the exhortation, as previously given, was, “let us go on . . . .” (Hebrews 6:1).  In verse twelve, the word “slothful” (KJV) is a translation of the same word rendered “dull of hearing” in the previous chapter (Hebrews 5:11).  The writer used the word in chapter five to best describe the present immature condition of those in view.  And now, in chapter six, he uses the same descriptive word again as he exhorts these Christians to not remain in their present immature state but to go on to maturity, for a revealed purpose.

To perhaps better understand exactly where the writer had been and was going with this whole line of thought, note verse eleven and the first part of verse twelve in a more literal rendering, with a few explanatory thoughts:

And we earnestly desire that every one of you [those in Hebrews 5:11ff] do show the same diligence [as exhibited in their ministry among the saints (Hebrews 5:10)] with respect to a full conviction and expectation of the hope [derived through knowledge, as they moved from immaturity to maturity] to the end [that is, hold this ‘hope unto the end,’ with a full conviction and expectation that it will one day be realized]:

In order that you might not remain dull of hearing [Hebrews 5:11 (or ‘slothful’ as rendered)], but . . . .”

The latter part of Hebrews 5:12, immediately following the preceding rendering, then provides the stated purpose for the entire exhortation; and the remainder of the chapter provides background and support from the Old Testament.  The remainder of the chapter is thus simply Scripture substantiating, supporting, and explaining Scripture.

Those being addressed were exhorted to go on unto maturity so that they could “imitate [‘imitators,’ in the sense of governing their pilgrim walk] of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises” (Hebrews 5:12b).

There is a future inheritance in view (which is the manner in which the book of Hebrews begins [Hebrews 1:2] and continues [Hebrews 1:14], revealing an inheritance belonging to firstborn sons [cf. Hebrews 2:10; 12:16-17, 23]); and Christians will come into a realization of this future inheritance only through governing their present pilgrim walk after a manner described by the words, “faith and patience.

Note the exact words of the text:

. . . through faith and patience [lit., ‘patient endurance’] inherit the promises” (Hebrews 5:12b).

“Patient endurance” would go hand in hand with “faith,” for there could not be a continued walk by faith apart from patient endurance (James 1:2-4).

And this is exactly what one finds at the capstone of the book of Hebrews (Hebrews 11; 12 [12a]), leading into the heart of the last of the five major warnings (Hebrews 12:16-17) — a warning that deals specifically with the rights of the firstborn.

Chapter eleven is the great chapter on faith in Scripture, but this chapter must be understood in conjunction with the preceding ten chapters.  Throughout chapter eleven, drawn entirely from the experiences of faithful Old Testament saints as they patiently endured under various trials and testing, one will find the words, “By faith . . . By faith . . . By faith . . . .”

That is the key to inheriting the promises.  The matter is simply as stated, “By faith” — remaining faithful (continuing to believe God, a continuance involving patient endurance) under various trials and testing.

These Old Testament saints,

. . . all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.” (Hebrews 11:13)

They exercised faithfulness with respect “to the saving of the soul” (Hebrews 10:39b).

Then note how Hebrews 12:1 begins:

Therefore we [Christians] also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [the Old Testament saints in Hebrews 11], let us . . . .

The implication is clear.  These Old Testament saints ran the race after a particular fashion, with a goal in view; and Christians are to run the race after the same fashion, with the same goal in view — the saving of the soul, which is with a view to an inheritance out ahead, to be realized in the coming age.
Chapter Eight
Inheriting the Promises

That you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself,

saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.”

And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute.

Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath,

that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.

This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil,

where the Forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. (Hebrews 6:12-20)

Jesus Christ is God’s appointed “heir of all things,” and the ages (not only time but all that exists within time [cf. John 1:3]) have been brought into existence in connection with the Son’s activity as God’s appointed “heir of all things” within these ages (Hebrews 1:2).

This is the manner in which the book of Hebrews begins, which sets the tone for the entire epistle.

The Son is at the center of everything in Scripture, beginning with Genesis 1:1; all of the Old Testament is about Him (Luke 24:25-27, 44; John 5:39, 45-47);  He is the Word, which is God, made flesh (John 1:1-2, 14); and His heirship is central to all things that Scripture reveals about the Son, beginning at the same point in Genesis (cf. Psalm 8:1-9; 1 Corinthians 15:45-50; Hebrews 1:4-13).

Man was created for a purpose, which was revealed at the time of his creation (Genesis 1:26-28).  He was created to “have dominion.”  And man being created to have dominion has its basis in God having previously appointed His Son, “heir of all things.”

Man lost his right to exercise dominion through the action of the first man, the first Adam.  Man, through Adam’s action, found himself in a fallen state, necessitating redemption.

Then the second Man, the last Adam, subsequently paid redemption’s price through and by His finished work at Calvary; and man, through redemption, once again finds himself back in a position wherein he can one day realize the purpose for his creation.

The second Man, the last Adam, will realize His appointed position as “heir of all things” through and by exercising dominion over all of God’s creation (as it pertains to the earth).  And He, along with numerous redeemed co-heirs, will exercise this dominion for 1,000 years, for the duration of the coming Messianic Era.

Thus, in the preceding sense, the central subject of Scripture is not really redemption per se but that which redemption makes possible, with the One who paid redemption’s price seen at the center of all that redemption makes possible.

Redemption entered the picture in Genesis after man found himself in a position wherein he could no longer realize the purpose for his creation, with redemption centering on bringing man back into the position where he could one day realize this purpose (Genesis 3:15, 21-24; cf. Genesis 3:1-13).  And redemption enters the picture today — or at any point in history — for exactly the same purpose that it did 6,000 years ago.

Unredeemed man is alienated from God and in no position to ever take the scepter; he is in no position to ever realize the purpose for his creation.  He must first be redeemed.  Then, the purpose for man’s redemption, going back to the purpose for his creation, can one day be realized.

Thus, whether dealing with man’s creation, his fall, or provided redemption following the fall, the same central purpose is always present; and that purpose has to do with man ultimately exercising dominion:

1) Man was created to exercise dominion.

2) Satan brought about his fall to prevent him from exercising dominion.

3) And redemption has been provided so man can be brought back into the position wherein he can one day exercise dominion, realizing the purpose for his creation in the beginning.

The thought of man exercising dominion both precedes and follows redemption at any point in Scripture.  It must, for this is the way matters are introduced in Genesis, establishing an unchangeable pattern.

It is as outlined in the opening part of the book of Hebrews.  This book, as previously stated, opens by calling attention to the fact that the Son has been appointed “heir of all things” (Hebrews 1:2).

Then reference is made to His redemptive work and His present position at God’s right hand (Hebrews 1:3).  And following this, the Spirit of God provides seven Messianic quotations from the Old Testament, pointing to that day when the appointed Heir will come into possession of His inheritance (Hebrews 1:5-13).  The order is exactly as seen in the opening three chapters of Genesis.

Hebrews begins by centering on the Son after this fashion.  But, again, redemption provided by the Son is for a purpose; and that purpose begins to be unfolded in the book immediately following the seven Messianic quotations by calling attention to the central purpose for the entire present dispensation.

And that purpose is singular:

The central purpose for the entire dispensation, in complete keeping with all things revealed in the Old Testament about the Son, is to acquire the co-heirs who will occupy the throne with the “heir of all things” during the coming day of His power (Hebrews 1:14ff; cf. Romans 8:17).

The second Man, the last Adam, has provided redemption so that fallen man (descending from the first man, the first Adam) can be brought back into the position for which he was created.  Thus, redemption is not an end in itself.  Rather redemption is a means to an end.  The end is “heirship,” and redemption places the person in a position wherein he can one day come into a realization of this heirship.

It is as in the type of beginning in Exodus 12.  The death of the firstborn in Egypt was not an end in itself.  That which occurred on the night of the Passover in Egypt was a means to an end.  But the death of the firstborn had to occur first.  The end of the matter revolved around an “inheritance” that lay in a land removed from Egypt, set before those passing through events surrounding the Passover.

And that is exactly what the book of Hebrews is about in a type-antitype structure.  It is about man, who has been redeemed, for a revealed purpose.  It is about redeemed man one day inheriting with the Son in a land removed from this earth.  It is about redeemed man coming into possession of “so great salvation” in that coming “seventh day” — the seventh millennium — first spoken of in Genesis 2:2-3 (Hebrews 1:14-2:5; 4:4-9).

(See the author’s book, From Egypt to Canaan BOOK, for a more comprehensive treatment of the preceding.)

God has set aside an entire dispensation lasting two millennia, during which He is calling out the co-heirs who will inherit with His Son during that coming day when the Son exercises dominion.  And these co-heirs are being called out from among the redeemed.

Thus, in this respect, the central subject of Hebrews revolves around matters beyond redemption.  The central subject of the book revolves around God’s dealings with the saved relative to an inheritance in a land set before them.  It revolves around redeemed man being brought into the position for which man was originally created.

An original type involving saved man in Hebrews can be seen in the account involving Eve in Genesis 2.  Viewing the antitype, this chapter in Genesis presents Christ’s co-heirs from Hebrews occupying the position of consort queen, typified by Eve.

Christ is the second Man, the last Adam, typified by the first man, the first Adam (Romans 5:14).  The redeemed of the present dispensation form His body (Colossians 1:18); and as Eve was removed from Adam’s body to reign as consort queen with him (“let them have dominion” [both the male and the female; Genesis 1:26-27]) so will the bride of Christ be removed from Christ’s body to reign as consort queen with Him.

Then in a subsequent type, the central mission of the Holy Spirit to the earth during the present dispensation is seen to center — not around redemption per sebut around the purpose for redemption.  According to Genesis 24, the central mission of the Holy Spirit in the world today is to acquire a bride for God’s Son.

In Genesis 23 the wife of Jehovah is seen set aside following Calvary (seen through events surrounding the death of Sarah, which follows the offering of Isaac [Genesis 22]).

Then in Genesis 25 Israel is seen restored through Abraham’s remarriage when he took Keturah as his wife.  And between Sarah’s death (Genesis 23) and Abraham’s remarriage (Genesis 25), there is an entire chapter (sixty-seven verses) detailing events that occur between these two times — times that foreshadow God’s past and future dealings with Israel.

Events in Genesis 24 have to do with one central subject — Abraham’s servant sent into the far country to acquire a bride for Abraham’s son, Isaac.  And the bride was to be acquired only from within Abraham’s family (Genesis 24:3-4).

Matters surrounding redemption, allowing unsaved man to become a member of the family, occur, in the type, back in Genesis 22 (the offering of Isaac); and the whole of that dealt with in Genesis 24 pertains to matters occurring within the family, foreshadowing matters occurring among the saved. Events in this chapter pertain to matters subsequent to and separate from redemption.

(More specifically, viewing the type and antitype together, the basis for redemption occurs through the Father offering the Son in Genesis 22 [typifying events surrounding Calvary], with redemption itself occurring throughout the time depicted by events in Genesis 24 [events throughout the present dispensation].

But, the fact remains, events in Genesis 24 do not deal with redemption per se.  Events in this chapter deal with family members [typifying those already saved] and the search for the bride.  And events in this chapter occur between Israel being set aside and Israel’s future restoration, which is where events during the present dispensation occur.)

The Holy Spirit, in the antitype of Abraham’s servant, is in the world today; and His primary mission revolves around calling out a bride for God’s Son.  Redemption must occur first.  The Spirit, on a separate and initial aspect of His work, must first breathe life into an individual, allowing that individual to pass from “from death to life”; and this places the individual within the company of the saved, within the company of those among whom the Spirit is presently conducting His search for the bride.

The redemptive work of the Spirit in this respect is fundamental and primary.  But there is a purpose for redemption, and the realization of that purpose has to do with the Spirit’s work surrounding the acquisition of a bride for God’s Son during the present dispensation, with a view to the Son’s reign during the coming dispensation.

And, in this respect, the bride of Christ — in perfect accord with Eve being removed from Adam’s body (Genesis 2) or Rebekah being removed from the family of Abraham (Genesis 24) — is to be acquired from the family of God.  That is, the bride is to be called out from among the saved.

And events foreshadowed by those in Genesis chapters two and twenty-four, rather than events foreshadowed by those in Genesis chapter twenty-two, is where one finds himself in the book of Hebrews.  This book deals with the Holy Spirit calling out a bride for God’s Son, offering to redeemed man the privilege and opportunity to one day participate in activities surrounding the bride.

This book centers on a salvation out ahead, a rest, an inheritance.  The book of Hebrews is about Christians one day entering into positions with the Son as co-heirs, comprising the Son’s bride, the one who will reign as consort queen in the antitype of Eve or Rebekah.

Through Faith and Patience

Accordingly, Scripture clearly reveals, in numerous places, that a future position with God’s Son as co-heir is not something that a person automatically enters into on the basis of his position “in Christ.”  Rather, a Christian’s present actions will determine his future position in this respect (Romans 8:17).

The matter is probably stated in Hebrews 6:12 in the simplest terms to be found anyplace in Scripture.  This verse reveals two things that must be present in a Christian’s life in order for him to have a part in God’s promise to Abraham in Genesis 22:17-18 — “faith and patience [‘patient endurance’].”  These two indispensables — two things that really encompass everything else — point to the Christian exercising “faith” throughout the pilgrim walk (Romans 1:17) as he “patiently endures” under all the various trials and testing that come his way (James 1:2-4).

But though the matter is stated in what would be considered a relatively simple manner, the journey along the route leading to the goal is far from simple or easy.  To the contrary, it is difficult and hard.  The pilgrim path is strewn with pitfalls all along the way.  Nothing throughout the pilgrim walk really comes easy.

Nor are things intended to come easy.  That’s not the way God arranged matters.

Something of incalculable value — the greatest thing God has ever designed for redeemed man — is being offered to man through the ministry of the Holy Spirit in the world today; and man, because of the onslaught of Satan, has been called upon to fight, to struggle.

The bride, in the final analysis, will be made up of those interested enough in that which is being offered to pay the price.

And a central crux of the matter involves the knowledge and resulting action of the enemy — the present world rulers (Satan and his angels) in heavenly places.  Christ with His co-heirs will one day replace Satan and those ruling under him.  Satan and his angels know this (Ephesians 3:9-11), the warfare rages (Ephesians 6:11ff), and the enemy will do everything within his power to prevent Christians from achieving victory in the present race of the faith.

But, on the other side of the picture, Christians have “an Advocate [Greek: parakletos, ‘One called alongside to help’] with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1) and a “Forerunner” presently seated at God’s right hand (Psalm 110:1; Hebrews 6:20).  And our “Forerunner” is the “Author [‘source’] of eternal salvation [‘age-lasting salvation’ — referring to the saving of the soul in relation to the 1,000-year Messianic Era] to all them that obey Him” (Hebrews 5:9).

There are numerous, unending problems strewn all along the route; but that which God deems of incalculable value is shown — numerous, different ways — to be worth every effort Christians can possibly expend.  Christians are to keep their eyes fixed on the goal, casting all their care upon Him, committing their way to the Lord and relying upon Him to bring matters to pass and to see them safely through (cf. Psalm 37:5; Hebrews 12:1-2; 1 Peter 5:7).

Christians are to “count it all joy” when falling into various trials and testing, knowing that “the trying” of their faith “works patience [‘patient endurance’]”; and they are to faithfully endure under the various trials and testing after this fashion in order that the Holy Spirit can progressively perform a work in their lives (the metamorphosis of Romans 12:2) which will, in the end, result in their being “perfect [‘mature’] and entire [‘complete’], wanting nothing [‘lacking nothing’]” (James 1:2-4).

And, governing their pilgrim walk after the instructed fashion, “through faith and patience [‘patient endurance’]” Christians will one day “inherit the promises.” 

1) Original Promises to Abraham

The example that the Spirit of God provides at this point in Hebrews, to illustrate “faith and patience” in relation to one’s calling, is that of Abraham.  Abraham was called out of one land in order to realize an inheritance in another land.  He was called from Ur of the Chaldees to realize an inheritance in the land of Canaan.

While still in Ur, God commanded and promised Abraham:

Now the LORD had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you.

I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing.

I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” (Genesis 12:1-3)

Then, after Abraham had departed Ur and was in the land of Canaan, following several experiences, God said to him:

And the LORD said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him: “Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are -- northward, southward, eastward, and westward;

for all the land that you see I give to you and your descendants forever.

And I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth; so that if a man could number the dust of the earth, then your descendants also could be numbered.

Arise, walk in the land through its length and its width, for I give it to you.” (Genesis 13:14-17)

Then beyond that, the Lord reaffirmed these words to Abraham by making an unconditional, everlasting covenant with him:

On the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying: “To your descendants I have given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the River Euphrates 

the Kenites, the Kenezzites, the Kadmonites,

the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim,

the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.” (Genesis 15:18-21)

Placing the preceding in perspective, the seed of Abraham (through Isaac and Jacob [Genesis 17:19, 21; 21:12; 25:23; 26:3-4; 27:37; 28:13-14]) was to be multiplied in an innumerable manner and dwell as a separate, distinct nation in the land to which Abraham had been called.  And, with the seed of Abraham in this land, God would bring matters to pass after such a fashion that all the other nations of the earth (all the Gentile nations) would be blessed through the nation emanating from the loins of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob.

2) Subsequent Promises to Abraham

The preceding outlines God’s promises concerning a seed and a land, along with God’s purpose, given to Abraham at the beginning of and at different times during his pilgrim journey.  The reference in Hebrews though is to God’s promise to Abraham at a later point in time (“after he had patiently endured” [Hebrews 6:15; cf. Hebrews 6:13-14]), moving the matter beyond the preceding promises.  The reference is to God’s promise recorded in Genesis 22, immediately following the account of Abraham offering his son on a mount in the land of Moriah (Genesis 22:1-14; cf. Hebrews 11:17-19), some five or six decades after God’s original promises to Abraham in Ur.

At this time God said unto Abraham:

. . . “By Myself I have sworn, says the LORD, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son 

blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies.

In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.” (Genesis 22:16-18)

The previous promises given to Abraham — at the beginning of and at different times during his pilgrim walk (at the beginning of and at different times during the long period of “faith and patience”) — were, as previously stated, unconditional in nature.  But now a conditional aspect of the matter comes into view.  The nations would be blessed through Abraham’s seed, from both heavenly and earthly spheres, because Abraham had obeyed God’s voice.

Thus, though the land was given to Abraham and his seed through an unconditional covenant, the people of Israel dwelling in the land, with God’s blessings flowing through the Jewish people out to the Gentiles nations of the earth, was conditional — something clearly seen in the covenant made with Israel at Sinai, which, as all covenants following the Abrahamic covenant, was based on and had to do with this initial covenant.

God, at this time, told the Jewish people, through Moses:

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine.

And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words that you shall speak to the children of Israel.” (Exodus 19:5-6)

Then, the book of Hebrews, reiterating the subsequent experiences of the unfaithful generation under Moses, states exactly the same thing relative to Christians concerning promises and blessings being of the same conditional nature as they pertain to their heavenly calling:

And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? (Hebrews 3:18)

So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief [unfaithfulness].

Let us [Christians under Christ] therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.

For to us was the gospel preached, as well as to them [the good news concerning the land, not the good news concerning salvation by grace]:  but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith by them that heard it” (Hebrews 3:18-4:2).

In the covenant that God made with Abraham in Genesis chapter fifteen (Genesis 15:8-21), animals were slain, with God alone passing between the slain animals.  This was an Eastern way of saying that I would have to be as one of these slain animals if this covenant is ever broken.

Then, in Genesis chapter twenty-two, another element is added to the matter.  In connection with that which God promised Abraham, before reiterating the matter in this passage, God swore by Himself (for there was none greater by whom He could swear) that His promises to Abraham would be brought to pass (Genesis 22:16-18).

These promises would be brought to pass at the same time Christ exercised the Melchizedek priesthood, typified in Genesis 14:18-19 (cf. Hebrews 6:20).  And in this respect, note that which the Father said to the Son in Psalm 110:4:

The LORD has sworn [by Himself], and will not relent [He will not change His mind], “You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”

Though a conditional element enters into the matter — faithfulness, obedience — the promises are based on that which is unconditional.  And the whole of the matter is affirmed in this respect by God swearing by Himself, for there was none greater by whom He could sware.

The Hope Set Before Us

Insofar as Abraham having both a heavenly seed and an earthly seed that would one day rule over the Gentile nations and through whom the Gentile nations would be blessed, the matter is as certain as the veracity of God’s oath.  God has sworn by Himself concerning the matter.

Israel, Abraham’s earthly seed through natural, lineal descent from Isaac and Jacob, will one day dwell in the land of Canaan at the head of the nations, with Christ seated on David’s throne in their midst.  And not only will Israel rule the nations after this fashion but the nations will be blessed through Christ and Israel.

And the Church, Abraham’s heavenly seed by positionally being “in Christ” (Galatians 3:16, 28-29), will one day dwell in a heavenly land at the head of the nations.  The Church will occupy the position of consort queen, seated on the throne with Christ (Christ actually will have a dual reign — seated on David’s throne in the earthly Jerusalem and on His own throne in the heavenly Jerusalem.  The Church though will reign as consort queen with Him only from His own throne in the heavens, not from David’s throne on the earth).  And not only will the Church rule the nations after this fashion — as co-heir with Christ — but the nations will be blessed through Christ and the Church.

Both Israel and the Church possess a hope, and that hope is in relation to the calling of each.  For Israel, it is earthly and has its basis in Genesis 22:16-18; and for the Church, it is heavenly and has its basis at the same point in Scripture.

1) Israel’s Hope

The hope of Israel is mentioned in Acts 28:20.  Paul was in Rome, imprisoned and bound by a chain, “for the hope of Israel.”  And that hope is explained in Acts 26:6-7.  It has to do with “the promise made by God to our fathers,” and it is connected with Israel’s future “resurrection” (Acts 23:6; 24:15).  That is, “the hope of Israel” revolves around the promises given to Abraham and reiterated to Isaac and Jacob being realized following the resurrection of Old Testament saints at Christ’s coming.

And Israel is not going to realize this hope apart from the two indispensables — “faith and patience [‘patient endurance’].”  Israel is going to have to pass through “the time of Jacob’s trouble,” a time of trouble “such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Jeremiah 30:7-9; Matthew 24:21).

Israel, during this time, will be brought into a position wherein the nation will be forced to cry out to the God of their fathers.  They will actually be forced into a position of faith (belief) in God; and when Christ returns and the Jewish people look upon their Messiah, the nation will then believe in Him.  A nation, at that time — through belief — will be brought forth “in one day,” born “at once” (cf. Exodus 2:23-25; 3:7-8; Isaiah 66:8; Hosea 5:13-6:2; Joel 2:1-27; Jonah 2:1-10; Zechariah 12:10-13:1; 14:1-9).

2) The Christians’ Hope

The text relative to “hope” in Hebrews chapter six (Hebrews 6:18) though does not concern Israel.  Rather, it concerns Christians alone — “. . . the hope set before us” — with Israel being in view within the larger scope of the promise as given to Abraham (Hebrews 6:14-15).

(Actually, Israel alone was in view within the original scope of the promise.  The lineal descendants of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob were made the repository for both heavenly and earthly promises.

But the heavenly aspect of the promised rulership and blessings was later offered to, rejected by, and taken from Israel at a time when the kingdom of the heavens was “at hand” [Matthew 3:1-2; 4:17; 10:5-7; 12:22-32; 21:43].

Then the one new man “in Christ” was called into existence to be the recipient of that which Israel had rejected [Matthew 16:18; Galatians 3:28-29; Ephesians 2:12-15; Hebrews 3:1; 1 Peter 2:9-11].)

The Christians’ hope, with its basis found the same place as Israel’s — within God’s promise to Abraham in Genesis 22:17 18 — is referred to numerous places in the New Testament; and different aspects of this hope are shown through the different references.

In Ephesians this “hope” has to do with an inheritance (Ephesians 1:11-18); in Colossians it has to do with the coming glory of Christ (Colossians 1:5, 23, 27); in 1 Thessalonians it has to do with a future salvation (1 Thessalonians 5:8); in Titus it has to do with an inheritance and life in the coming age (Titus 1:2; 2:12-13; 3:7); in 1 Peter it has to do with an inheritance, the salvation of one’s soul, and participation in Christ’s coming glory (1 Peter 1:3-9; 3:14-15; 4:12-13); and in 1 John it has to do with being unashamed and like Christ when Christians see Him “as He is” at the judgment seat (1 John 2:28-3:3).

Hebrews, accordingly, should be no different; and that is exactly the case.  The “hope,” in this epistle, is something set before Christians, which is associated with God’s promise to Abraham, an inheritance, and the saving of the soul (Hebrews 6:13-19; 10:36-39).

The “confidence and the rejoicing of the hope” is to be held by Christians in an unwavering, steadfast manner (Hebrews 3:6; 10:23); and Christians are exhorted to assemble together for the specified purpose of discussing this hope and being a help to one another in things related to this hope (Hebrews 10:23-25 [in Hebrews 10:23, “profession of our faith” in the KJV should literally be translated “confession of the hope”]).

An Anchor of the Soul

This hope is presented as “an anchor of the soul” (Hebrews 6:19).  It is an anchor “both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil [i.e., beyond the veil, inside the Holy of Holies].”  And Christ, beyond the veil, is presented as “the forerunner . . . for us” (the One who has gone ahead on our behalf).  He is presently acting as High Priest on our behalf, anticipating the coming day of His power;  and He, as High Priest beyond the veil, is providing a present cleansing for the “kings and priests” (Revelation 5:10) who will ascend the throne with Him during that coming day.

Note how the preceding is reflected at the end of Hebrews chapter six:

where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever [“with respect to the age,” the coming Messianic Era] according to the order of Melchizedek. (Hebrews 6:20)

The Christians’ hope is not only firmly anchored on the person of Christ beyond the veil, but it is anchored upon Christ as He will appear in that coming day — as the great King-Priest, “according to the order of Melchizedek.”  It is a present hope that looks to a future day for its realization, and it has to do with the saving of the soul.

This is why, within the capstone of the book, Christians are exhorted to keep their eyes fixed upon Jesus (Hebrews 12:1-2).  Christians are exhorted to keep their eyes fixed on the One beyond the veil, where the anchor of their soul lies; and, in this manner, they are to faithfully run with patient endurance “the race” set before them.

The summation of the matter surrounding “faith and patience [‘patient endurance’]” is possibly best stated in the words concluding the fourth major warning in Hebrews, introducing chapter eleven in the book, the great chapter on “faith”:

For you have need of endurance [‘patient endurance’], so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:

For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry.

Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.

But we are not of those who draw back to perdition [‘destruction,’ ‘ruin’]; but of those who believe to the saving of the soul. [lit., “of faith with respect to a saving of the soul”] (Hebrews 10:36-39).

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Word Document which may be copied and printed:
  Let Us Go On BOOK by Arlen Chitwood.docx 

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Joseph and his brothers

Joseph was the second youngest of twelve brothers born to Jacob, who was called Israel. In Genesis 37:3-4 we read, “Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made an ornate robe for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.” The same passage also discusses two dreams Joseph had that angered his brothers; the dreams indicated his brothers would someday bow to him. Joseph’s brothers also despised him due to their father’s overt favoritism toward him.

One day, Joseph traveled to check on his brothers while they were watching their sheep. His brothers plotted against him, threw him in an empty well, and later sold him as a slave to some traveling Midianites. Applying animal blood to his “ornate robe,” they returned home and made Jacob believe his son had been killed by wild animals.

In the meantime, Joseph was taken to Egypt and sold to the captain of the guard, Potiphar, as a household slave. Joseph was later falsely accused of attempting to rape Potiphar’s wife and thrown into prison. While in prison, Joseph accurately interpreted the dreams of two of Pharaoh’s servants, who were also incarcerated. Later, Pharaoh had a disturbing dream no one could interpret. One of the servants Joseph had previously helped then suggested to Pharaoh that Joseph could interpret the dream. Joseph was summoned from prison, and he interpreted Pharaoh’s dream in such a powerful way that he was appointed second-in-command over Egypt.

Pharaoh’s dream predicted seven years of famine. During the famine, Joseph’s older brothers came to Egypt to buy food. They did not recognize Joseph, now twenty years older, and he treated them harshly, pretending that he thought they were spies. Joseph kept one brother in prison until the others brought their youngest brother, Benjamin, back to Egypt to prove they were not spies. They brought Benjamin with them on a return trip, and, after a series of twists that included his brothers bowing before him—in fulfillment of Joseph’s dream of long ago—Joseph revealed himself to his brothers. They were shocked, yet soon glad to be reunited. Joseph sent word for the entire family to join them in Egypt until after the famine.

Later, when their father, Jacob, died, Joseph’s brothers feared that Joseph would take revenge against them for their prior treatment of him. They came to Joseph and begged for his forgiveness, appealing to a request their father had made before he died (Genesis 50:16-17) Joseph wept when he heard their appeal. Revenge was the last thing on his mind. Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:19–20).

In the story of Joseph and his brothers, we see the themes of forgiveness, the father-son bond, sibling rivalry, brotherly love, God’s sovereignty, and God’s greater good in times of suffering. Just like Joseph, we are called to forgive those who have offended us and see life’s experiences as part of God’s plan to help us serve others.

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In the Loins of Abraham
God’s Two Firstborn Sons in the Old Testament
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“And as I may so say, Levi also, who receiveth tithes, paid tithes in Abraham. For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchizedek met him” (Hebrews 7:9-10; cf. Genesis 14:17-15:4).

The introduction of the nation of Israel in Scripture, along with the supply of a continuing wealth of information pertaining to this nation, is seen at a time much earlier than man might think or imagine.

For example, in Exodus 12:40-41, Israel, God’s firstborn son (Exodus 4:22-23), is seen sojourning in a land throughout the four hundred thirty years leading up to the beginning of the nation’s existence — a sojourn which began at the time Abraham left Ur of the Chaldees, thirty years prior to the birth of Isaac.

Or, as seen in the text, in Hebrews 7:9-10, Levi is seen as having paid tithes in the loins of Abraham (his great grandfather), at the time Abraham met Melchizedek in Genesis chapter fourteen (Genesis 14:17-24), again, prior to the birth of Isaac.

Thus, a nation which would not exist until four hundred thirty years had passed is seen in the loins of Abraham at the time he left Ur at the age of seventy. And matters regarding Israel in this respect can be taken back even farther than the preceding, much farther (e.g., Shem, nine generations preceding Abraham).

Information regarding the nation of Israel begins in Genesis much earlier than Abraham’s birth in chapter eleven, or actually even the account of that stated about Shem in chapter nine. Information regarding Israel in Scripture actually begins at that time when the Spirit of God moved upon the ruined creation in Genesis 1:2b and continues from that point throughout the first 2,000 years of human history, preceding the birth of Abraham, the father of the nation of Israel (Genesis 1:2-11:26 [2b]).

References to or events pertaining to the nation, centuries and millenniums prior to the existence of the nation, can easily be seen in passages such as Genesis 3:15 (the Seed of the woman [Israel]), or the typology of Cain and Abel (Genesis 4:1ff), or that of Noah and his family passing through the Flood (Genesis 6:1-8:22), or that stated about Shem in relation to Ham and Japheth. (Genesis 9:25-27).

But how can things pertaining to Israel be seen beginning with the earth’s restoration and continuing into man’s creation in the opening verses of chapter one?

Note five verses of Scripture in four New Testament books:

“Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22).

“For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

And he is before all things, and by him all things consist [‘all things have been established,’ ‘all things hold together’]” (Colossians 1:16-17).

“Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [‘in the person of’] his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds [‘brought into existence (arranged) the ages’]” (Hebrews 1:2).

“And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him [the Beast], whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8).

In the first of the preceding references, “salvation” is clearly stated to be “of the Jews.” This is the nation which brought forth the Saviour, Who, in the fourth and last of the references, was “slain from the foundation of the world” (which takes one back to the time of Genesis 1:2b ff [cf. I Peter 1:18-20]).

(How can one son [Israel] be present at a time prior to that son’s existence? That has already been addressed after one fashion, but it can also be addressed by asking, How could the other Son [Christ] have been slain at a time prior to His incarnation and the events of Calvary?

Then, who slew Christ at the time seen in Revelation 13:8 — “from the foundation of the world” [i.e., from the time of events in Genesis 1:2b ff]? Only one person could possibly be seen as the slayer; only the other son could have committed this act, as seen in the typology of Cain slaying his brother, Abel, in Genesis 4.

Christ was the Paschal Lamb, the paschal lamb was given to Israel [Exodus 12:1 ff], and only Israel could slay the paschal lamb. It matters not whether the event occurred at the time of the restoration of the ruined material creation or 4,000 years later at Calvary. The same two individuals — the same two Sons — have to be involved. There is simply no other way for the event to occur at any time in history.

Suffice it to say that “with God all things are possible” [Matthew 19:26].)

Then note the other two previously quoted references, the second and third references, which have to do with God’s actions in relation to the whole of the matter, with nothing occurring apart from His Son.

Any time God’s work is seen in Scripture (e.g., His restorative work occurring over six days time in Genesis 1:2b ff), His Son, “slain from the foundation of the world,” has to be seen as well, for nothing has ever occurred or ever will occur apart from the Son. And this is the One Whom the nation of Israel would bring forth and slay, though the Son both existed and was slain prior to this time.

“Salvation” is not only “of the Jews,” but “Neither is there salvation in any other [a reference to the One Whom Israel brought forth]” (John 4:22; Acts 4:12) — inseparable references to both of God’s two firstborn Sons.

To separate God’s two firstborn Sons in Biblical studies (Exodus 4:22-23; Hebrews 1:6) — dealing with one apart from the other — is simply not possible. This is one reason that the same Scriptures are, at times, used of both (e.g., Hosea 11:1; Jonah 1:17 [cf. Matthew 2:15; 12:38-40]); and to see one Son (Christ) apart from the other son (Israel) in the restoration account, beginning in Genesis 1:2b, can only be a completely improper way to view the matter.

Beginning revelation pertaining to Israel has to be seen in Scripture in Genesis 1:2b ff, for the work was done completely in connection with and through the One in Whom salvation (restoration) lies; and this Son (Christ) cannot be separated from the other son (Israel), in whom salvation (restoration) lies as well.

Then, note Genesis chapter two (Genesis 2) where details pertaining to man’s creation in chapter one are given. And these details have to do with the bride being removed from the body.

In the historical account, in the type, Adam was put to sleep, his side opened, and God took from his opened side a part of his body (a rib), from which he formed the woman, Eve. Then God presented the woman back to the man as a helpmate; and, through this act, the woman, formed from a part of the man, completed the man.

And the antitype is easy to see. The second Man, the last Adam, was put to sleep on the Cross, His side was opened, and out of His opened side flowed the two elements which God is presently using to form the bride — blood and water — pointing to the present high priestly work of the Son (a cleansing, on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat in the heavenly sanctuary).

Then, once the bride has been removed from the body (the Spirit’s work during the present dispensation), and the bride subsequently revealed (through decisions and determinations resulting from the judgment seat), the bride, formed from a part of the Son’s body, will be presented back to the Son as a co-heir, a helpmate, helping the Son in His millennial rule; and, through this act, in line with both the type and Hebrews 2:10, the bride will complete the Son.

Now, note something about the preceding. None of this can exist apart from Israel. According to Romans chapter eleven, Gentiles, who do not have a God (Ephesians 2:11-13), have been grafted into the only nation with a God (through being “in Christ,” a Jewish Saviour [Romans 11:24]), the nation which brought forth the Saviour, the only nation which could do so, for “salvation is of the Jews.”

Thus, Israel is not only seen in Genesis 1, but in Genesis 2 as well.

Then the nation is seen throughout chapter three in the account of man’s fall, necessitating salvation, with the account of Israel slaying Christ in the typology of Cain slaying Abel in Genesis 4. And material in chapter four, both before and after the account of Cain slaying Abel, provides a complete history of the nation of Israel, 2,500 years before the nation even existed.

Then, none of the events in chapters five through eight could have occurred apart from Israel being seen throughout — Enoch being removed from the earth alive, with Noah and his family then passing through the Flood, foreshadowing the Church being removed prior to Israel passing through the Tribulation.

As previously seen, nothing occurs apart from the Son, which, in reality, as also previously seen, would have to include both Sons — both Christ and Israel. And aside from the preceding, the typology surrounding Enoch couldn’t exist apart from Israel, for, apart from Israel, there could be no Church to be removed in the antitype.

And this could be continued through subsequent chapters leading to Abraham’s birth (Genesis 9-11a), but the preceding material should be sufficient to get the point across. God’s work through One of His firstborn Sons simply cannot occur apart from the Other firstborn Son being seen as well.

(Note how this takes care of a quite-popular, erroneous teaching in Christendom today — the teaching that the Church has supplanted Israel in God’s plans and purposes, with God being through with Israel.

If something such as the preceding has occurred, after any fashion, then Christians can forget about everything, including their very salvation.

God’s work through One Son is not seen, it cannot exist, apart from the Other Son. Apart from a connection with both Sons — a Jewish Saviour, brought forth by a Jewish nation, with Christians seen grafted into a Jewish trunk — there can be no salvation, or anything else, aside from eternal ruin and damnation [Romans 11:1-26].

And the truth of the preceding can be seen throughout the first eleven chapters of Genesis, then continuing with the birth of Abraham in Genesis 11:27 and progressively moving throughout the Old Testament.

Note just one example — that of Shem, in relation to Ham and Japheth in Genesis 9:25-27. Shem was the only one of Noah’s three sons possessing a God. The other two sons, without a God, could only possess a connection with God one way — by going to the son in possession of a God, by going to Shem and dwelling “in the tents of Shem” [the words used in Scripture to denote the only way of partaking of that possessed by Shem].

Shem’s lineage in this respect can be traced through Abraham nine generations later, then through Isaac, Jacob, his twelve sons, and the nation of Israel. All of the other nations on earth can trace their lineage through either Ham, Japheth, or Shem’s lineage through individuals other than Abraham Isaac, Jacob, and his twelve sons.

And, exactly the same conditions exist today in relation to the descendants of Shem, Ham, and Japheth — conditions which can never change. “Israel” is the only nation on the face of the earth with a God, all of the other nations are as described in Ephesians 2:11-13 [without a God (cf. Psalms 96:5)], and the nations are left with only one choice if they would have any connection with or access to God. They must go to the one nation with a God, to a Jewish Saviour Who is God. There is no alternative.

Now, note what would happen if Shem were removed from the picture in Genesis chapter nine, or if the nation of Israel were removed from the picture today [which are two ways of saying the same thing].

That needs to be thought through — thought about long and hard — before giving credence to what so many Christians are stating today about God being through with Israel, seeing the Church replacing Israel in God’s plans and purposes.)

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Word Document:  In the Loins of Abraham by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - In the Loins of Abraham by Arlen Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
A Place in the Wilderness
The Place Where Israel Will Flee in the Tribulation
By Arlen L. Chitwood by Lamp Broadcast

“Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation [the Tribulation] be overpast.

For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity…” (Isaiah 26:20-21a).

“Now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights” (Jonah 1:17).

“When ye therefore see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains” (Matthew 24:15-16; cf. Luke 21:20-21).

“And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and three score days…

And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.

And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent” (Revelation 12:5-6, 13-14).

The preceding Scriptures — from four different books, two from the Old Testament (Isaiah and Jonah) and two from the New Testament (Matthew and Revelation) — are the main verses one would normally go to when dealing with that which will happen to the Jews in the land of Israel (presently about 6,000,000) when events surrounding the man of sin, the Beast, breaking his seven-year covenant with Israel begin to occur.

The Scriptures, or That Often Taught?

First, it is important to understand that the Jewish people are not back in the land in fulfillment of any type Old Testament restoration promises. That is, they are not back in the land through any type fulfillment of promises pertaining to God regathering His people back to the land.

(The preceding would be contrary to much present popular thought in Christian circles. Most Christians today, seeking to deal with and understand things about Israel and the nations in the Middle East — many aligning themselves after some fashion with what is often called “Christian Zionism” — see the establishment of the Jewish nation May 14, 1948 and the continuous migration of Jews back to the land since that time as God restoring His people to the land in accordance with His numerous promises in the O.T. to one day do so [Ezekiel 39:25-29; Amos 9:11-15].  Ref. Zionism in this site.

And many of these see a gradual reclamation of parts of the land, mainly for agricultural purposes, as God also restoring the land as well, again, in accordance with His promises to do so [Leviticus 26:42; II Chronicles 7:14].

A number of other Bible students though would somewhat draw back from the all-inclusiveness of the preceding — because of the Jewish people’s present unbelieving and unrepentant state — and see God restoring His people to their land only in accordance with certain, particular O.T. promises to do so. They would see God restoring His people in accordance with a handful of promises which they look upon as a restoration of the people in unbelief, to then be dealt with by God in or near the land [e.g., in Petra**] relative to their salvation, with the Messianic Era in view [e.g., sections such as Isaiah 11:11-12; Ezekiel 20:33-38; 22:17-22; 36:22-28; Zephaniah 2:1-3 are those usually referenced].

Thus, one might say that there are two groups within the one larger group. Both though are making the same basic mistake, for THERE ARE NO SCRIPTURES having to do with God restoring any of the Jewish people prior to the time of Christ’s return. Both groups take different Scriptures having to do with events surrounding Israel occurring either immediately preceding or following Christ’s return and seek to apply them to events occurring since May 14, 1948.

[The verses previously cited, used by those seeing God regathering a segment of the Jewish people in unbelief, are actually verses pertaining to God dealing with the Jewish people either during or following the Tribulation, mainly with activities following the Tribulation, having to do with a fulfillment of the things depicted by the seven Jewish festivals in Leviticus 23.

These verses, in this respect, have to do mainly with the national conversion and cleansing of the Jewish people, among other related things, at the time of Christ’s return. And these things will occur following Man’s Day, at the beginning of the Lord’s Day].

All of this misunderstanding, misrepresentation of Scripture — resulting in an erroneous teaching of Scripture — could have been prevented had these individuals paid attention to the O.T. types, the Jewish festivals, and the plain reading of Scripture in the light of that revealed by the Prophets concerning the matter. But all has seemingly been thrown to the winds, with the result in the matter where we are today.

The heavens remain closed relative to God’s dealings with the Jewish people today, and they will not again open until He has concluded His dealings with the Church during the present dispensation and has removed the Church.

[Note, for example, the typology of Jacob and Laban, when the heavens remained closed from Genesis 28:15 to Genesis 31:3, during the entire time of Jacob’s exile — extending to a time when he had acquired all of Laban’s wealth (cf. Isaiah 60:1-12). ONLY THEN did God speak to Jacob relative to a return to his land].

Thus, with the heavens closed, the return of Jews back to the land since the establishment of the nation in the late ‘40s can, of course, have NOTHING to do with any type restoration of the people in accordance with any of the O.T. Prophets. God simply is NOT dealing with [speaking to] Israel in such a respect today, which His having a part in any type restoration would necessitate.

Rather, the present migration of Jews to the land has to do with God allowing the Jewish people to rise up and seek to emancipate themselves — apart from their Messiah, in their present unbelieving and unrepentant state — and re-enter an “empty, swept, and garnished” house. And God has allowed this to occur in order to bring about end-time events relative to Israel and the nations [Matthew 12:43-45; 23:37-39].

But, seeking to relate all of this to any type O.T. prophecies concerning God speaking to Israel at a time when the heavens are closed is an entirely different matter. It hasn’t happened and it’s not happening for the simple reason that, from a Biblical standpoint, IT CAN’T HAPPEN!

[For additional information on the preceding, note the author’s pamphlets, “70 years, 490 Years.pdf” (Parts I-III), where this overall matter is dealt with and numerous other related pamphlets, articles, and chapters in books are referenced. Also “70 Years, 490 Years” and other Arlen Chitwood pamphlets are in this site as well].)

Now, dealing with the subject of the Jewish people being uprooted from their land and fleeing into “the wilderness” in the middle of the Tribulation, when the man of sin turns against them (i.e., the Jews presently in the land, some 6,000,000 today), why has so much time been spent on the way a large segment of Christendom looks upon that which has been happening since 1948?

The answer is because of what Christians are confronted with today through that being taught by the vast majority of Bible teachers concerning the present Jewish nation in the Middle East.

These individuals see the Jewish people presently in the land — not necessarily all of those in the land, but large numbers — forming some type remnant that will flee to a designated place in or near the land (e.g., in Petra**), there be protected from harm, be furnished with the necessities of life, and be dealt with by God during the last half of the Tribulation.

And they, in a respect, find themselves somewhat forced into this position, for they see God having brought the Jewish people back into the land in order to deal with them, after a particular fashion, in or near the land rather than out among the nations.

Then, beyond that, as previously stated, some see the present returning Jews as a people who can never again be uprooted from their land.

Scenarios concerning any of the preceding though are built on previous error and are as far removed from that which Scripture has to say about the matter as the previous error — i.e., their prior position concerning God speaking to the Jewish people today, when the heavens are closed, restoring them to their land (whether in unbelief, or in any other fashion).

And since the preceding is what so many Bible teachers believe and teach, and what so many Christians are confronted with by these numerous Bible teachers today, it has all been laid out before presenting the simple truth of the matter.

So, What Does Scripture Say?

The matter regarding Israel fleeing into the wilderness, where they will flee — i.e., the location of “the wilderness” — is quite plainly stated in Scripture. And one wonders how anyone could ever miss it, though the reasons so many miss it are obvious.

When the manner in which God has structured Old Testament history is largely ignored (which is highly typical), leaving one estranged from a large section of God’s Word, one reason is provided. How God uses metaphors, which in this case are largely ignored as well, another reason is provided. Then there is the matter of comparing Scripture with Scripture, which, in this case, is also largely ignored.

Thus, without using the means which God has provided in His Word, what can one expect but the error which has resulted?!

The truth of the matter is all very simple. Take the type in Jonah, the reference in Matthew, the reference in Revelation, compare Scripture with Scripture, bring in other related Scriptures, keep in mind how God uses metaphors, and Scripture sets forth the whole of the matter for you.

In the middle of the Tribulation the Jewish people in the land are said to flee into “the wilderness” in Revelation 12:6, 14. The word “wilderness” is a translation of the Greek word eremos, and “wilderness” is a good translation. The word is used in the New Testament referring to desolate places both in and out of the land of Israel (John 1:23; 3:14).

And, aside from the two usages of the word in Revelation chapter twelve, it is used only one other time in this book, referring to the same regal woman, though now seen as a harlot, out among the Gentile nations (Revelation 17:3; cf. Revelation 12:1ff; 17:1, 15, 18).

The scene presented in Revelation 17:1ff is clearly that of Israel following the nation’s flight into the wilderness back in chapter twelve — now out among the nations, in the kingdom of the Beast.

And both Matthew and Jonah present exactly the same picture, seen from different perspectives.

In Matthew, instead of “the wilderness” it is “the mountains,” with “a mountain” used in Scripture to metaphorically signify a kingdom (cf. Isaiah 2:1-5; Matthew 16:28-7:5). And with “mountains” (plural) in view, the text can only point to the Gentile nations.

And this is perfectly in line with Jonah, typifying Israel, being swallowed by the great fish and there protected by God. The fish was in the sea, with “the sea” used as a metaphor for the Gentile nations (cf. Daniel 7:2-3; Matthew 13:1; Revelation 13:1).

And, as Jonah, so Israel — in the sea, out among the nations, in the place which God had originally prepared for Israel, where He will protect and care for the nation.

Thus, Scripture is quite clear. In the middle of the Tribulation when the Beast breaks his covenant with Israel, the Jews in the land will be driven back out among the nations, where God had originally driven them in order to deal with them relative to repentance.

They will be driven back out where the remainder of world-Jewry resides — some 7,000,000 to 8,000,000 more Jews, and there God will deal with all of them together — the complete nation, in the kingdom of the Beast.

And it is here, out among the nations, in the diaspora [Gk. diasporā, dispersion], that God will bring His people through the fire, providing for and protecting them, as seen in Revelation 12:14 — not necessarily as individuals, for over 9,000,000 (by today’s count) will perish — but as a nation. For the nation, with God residing in the nation’s midst, where He has always been, cannot perish, else God Himself would have to perish as well (cf. Exodus 3:1-7; Daniel 3:19-27).
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Word Document:  A Place in the Wilderness by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  A Place in the Wilderness, The Place Where Israel Will Flee in the Tribulation, By Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.
**Petra

The city of Petra is not mentioned in the Bible by that name; rather, it is called by its Hebrew name, Sela in Isaiah 16:1 and 2 Kings 14:7. Both Petra and Sela mean “**rock,” an appropriate name, since much of the city is carved into sandstone cliffs. Petra is located about fifty miles south of the Dead Sea and 170 miles southwest of modern Amman, Jordan.

Petra’s main access is via a narrow crevice called the Siq, which winds for about a mile through mountainous terrain. The Siq provided an excellent natural defense for Petra’s inhabitants. Many moviegoers are familiar with the Siq and the treasury building of Petra, which were featured in the 1989 film Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

Petra was in the land of the Edomites, who were descendants of Esau. Israel and Edom were constantly at odds, starting with Edom’s refusal to allow Moses and the Israelites passage through their land on their way to Canaan (Numbers 20:18-21). During the kingdom years, King Saul and King David both fought the Edomites (1 Samuel 14:47; 2 Samuel 8:13-14). During the reign of King Jehoshaphat, Edom invaded Judah and was repelled (2 Chronicles 20). Later, King Amaziah fought against Edom, and he took control of Petra, renaming it “Joktheel” (2 Kings 14:7).

When King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon destroyed Jerusalem in 586 BC, the Edomites gave aid and comfort to the enemy (Psalm 137:7). For this, they were strongly condemned by the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Obadiah (Isaiah 34:5-8; Jeremiah 49:16-18).

For centuries, Petra seemed secure in its unassailable fortress of rock, but today its ruins lie uninhabited, in fulfillment of the prophetic word: “‘As Sodom and Gomorrah were overthrown, along with their neighboring towns,’ says the LORD, ‘so no one will live there; no people will dwell in it’” (Jeremiah 49:18).
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**See Peter and the rock! and Peter is not the rock in this site for more on Petra, the rock, including a picture.


To website CONTENTS Page.
Yad Vashem
“A Place and a Name”
A Memorial to the Jewish Victims of the Holocaust
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Even unto them will I give in mine house and within my walls ‘a place and a name’ better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off.

Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the Lord, to serve him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants, everyone that keepeth the Sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of my covenant.

Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt-offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people” (Isaiah 56:5-7).

Yad Vashem,” transliterated from the Hebrew text of Isaiah 56:5 (meaning, “A Place and a Name”), is the official name of the memorial in Jerusalem to the 6,000,000 Jewish victims of the Holocaust.

And “Yad Vashem,” as well, is not only a memorial to the Jewish victims of the Holocaust but also a research center, fully documenting all aspects of the Holocaust. The Jewish people not only want their own people but the world at large to know about and never forget that which occurred in Europe throughout the twelve-year reign of the Third Reich (1933-1945), both immediately preceding and during WWII.

A Place, A Name

The Hebrew word yad in Isaiah 56:5, translated “place” (KJV, NKJV) or “memorial” (NASB, NIV), is actually the Hebrew word for “hand,” though it could take on other related meanings within different contexts. In this passage, the way yad is used, the thought of both “hand” and “place” appear to come into use together.

That is, the thought contextually has to do with Israel being lifted up via Divine power, by God’s hand, into a particular place, with the nation possessing “a name” (vashem) in keeping with their elevated place.

Then, there is one other matter. The two words, yad vashem in Isaiah 56:5, appear in a Messianic passage. These two words actually describe the place which Israel will occupy during the coming Messianic Era — an elevated place above all the nations (no longer the tail, but now the head), with at least one form of Israel’s name in that day seen in Malachi 3:12:

“And all nations shall call you ‘blessed’…”

Thus, the Israeli people, years ago, chose a name for their Holocaust memorial from a Messianic passage of Scripture, actually describing the Jewish people yet future, not today.

But, aside from the preceding, there would be a marked parallel between how the two words depict both that seen today and that which will exist yet future.

1) Today

The Holocaust memorial — aptly named Yad Vashem in one respect — came into existence in 1953, as the nation had previously come into existence in 1948, out of the ruins and devastation produced by WWII. As a “phoenix,” both the nation and the memorial arose out of the ashes of this war.

The memorial has to do with the dead, 6,000,000 of them; but the memorial was built by the living, which has grown to another 6,000,000 in the land today. And they have a message for all those who died:

“We Live!”

2) Yet Future

Yad Vashem in Isaiah 56:5, as previously shown, actually has to do with a description of the Jewish people during another time, yet future. It has to do with a time following a future Holocaust which the Jewish people are about to enter into and experience.

During this future time, the Jewish people forming the present nation of Israel in the Middle East are going to be uprooted from their land and driven back out among the nations (either fleeing to “the mountains” in Matthew 24:16, “the wilderness” in Revelation 12:6, 14 [two ways of metaphorically depicting world kingdoms, the nations], or being “led away captive into all nations” in Luke 21:24). And out among the nations, the Jewish people will experience something similar to but far worse than that which they experienced in Europe immediately preceding and during WWII.

And out of this time a nation will arise and the true Yad Vashem will be seen. As following WWII, as a “phoenix,” the nation, in connection with the fulfillment of Isaiah 56:5, will arise out of the ashes of that which is about to occur.

3) The Past Assyrian, Nebuchadnezzar, Hitler, the Future Assyrian

The Israelites in Egypt during Moses’ day, persecuted by the past Assyrian, were pictured as a bush that continuously burned without being consumed, with God in the midst of the bush (Exodus 3:2-4).

Thus, persecuting Israel was/is persecuting God; and to destroy Israel, God must be destroyed.

The Israelites during Daniel’s day were pictured through Nebuchadnezzar having three of their number cast into a fiery furnace which had been heated seven times hotter than normal, with a fourth Person seen in the furnace with them (which could only have been the same Person in the midst of the burning bush in Exodus 3:2-4). And the three Israelites emerged from the furnace without a single hair on their heads singed, their clothes unburnt, and apart from even the smell of fire or smoke upon their bodies (Daniel 3:19ff).

During Hitler’s day, through his efforts to produce a Jew-free Europe, 6,000,000 Jews died — mainly in concentration camp gas chambers, with their bodies then burned in crematoriums. The nation itself though still lived and could not be destroyed. Then when the future Assyrian appears, some 9,000,000 Jews will be slain worldwide in about half the time as died in Europe immediately before and during WWII. But the nation itself, exactly as at the end of WWII, will emerge. The nation will still live, with prophecy after prophecy then continuing to be fulfilled regarding Israel.

4) If One Wants to Do Away with Israel…

If one wants to destroy or see God do away with Israel, he will need to change both laws which God has established and decrees which He has made (e.g., note Isaiah 54:17; Jeremiah 31:35-37; 33:20-26).

Those in the past should have asked about the matter or read the Book. They found out the hard way.

And the same could be said for the one about to appear. His end will be the same. His end has already been foretold time after time in the Book.

Never Again, but…

Relative to the Holocaust, or anything like the Holocaust, the Jewish people have a saying today:

“Never Again!”

That is, the Jewish people are determined to never let anything like this happen again. The Jewish people are determined to never again let any group of people, any nation, or any group of nations, do something such as was done to them in Europe during the reign of the Third Reich.

And this would undoubtedly be the main reason for Israel’s hardline attitude toward dealings with individuals and nations today, particularly the Moslem nations surrounding them (which are mainly Arabic nations).

With a view to the past, dating back 3,500 years, with a particular emphasis on the recent past in modern times, how else could one expect the Jewish people to react (e.g., the Jewish people’s present reaction to the U.S. Secretary of State trying to bring about a peace agreement between them and nations openly proclaiming that they have one goal — to drive Israel into the sea)?

(In the light of Scripture, efforts by anyone attempting to bring about peace between Israel and the surrounding nations today can only result in complete failure. It simply can’t be done. God has “torn” the nation, for a reason; and God alone will one day “heal” the nation when His purpose for tearing the nation has been brought to pass [Hosea 5:13-6:3].

Until then, no power on earth can do a thing about effecting peace in the troubled Middle East. Hosea 5:14 specifically states, “…none shall rescue him [the one whom God has ‘torn’].” Those presently trying to bring about peace in the Middle East should have checked the Book. It would have prevented a lot of unnecessary expended energy and expense.)

But, as previously shown, that which the Jewish people have determined to never let happen again will happen again. And, when it does happen again, the sufferings experienced by the Jewish people in Europe during the reign of the Third Reich will pale by comparison to the sufferings which the Jewish people are about to experience.

The latter will so far exceed the former, or any other period of Jewish persecution dating all the way back to the inception of the nation during Moses’ day in Egypt, that there can be no comparison.

The Future Holocaust Israeli Repentance, Then…

Why will this future Holocaust occur? And what will be the end of the matter? The answers to both questions are very simple, and they have to do with two inseparably interrelated things:

1) Israeli disobedience.

2) God driving the Jewish people out among the Gentile nations to effect repentance through persecution at the hands of these nations.

The Prophets have spoken, this is what they have to say, and God’s Word given through the Prophets cannot fail of fulfillment.

The future Holocaust will be of such severity that the Jewish people — after 2,600 years of Gentile dominance, with the Jewish people scattered among the nations — will be brought to the place of repentance.

That, in short, is “the why” of the future holocaust, along with its “intensity”; and, as well, that, in short, will be “the end of the matter.”

After the Jewish people have been brought to the place of repentance through the severity of the future Holocaust, Christ will return, bring about Israel’s national conversion, regather the Jewish people from the nations back to their land, destroy Gentile world power, make a new covenant with Israel in a restored theocracy, and subsequently work through this restored nation pertaining to purposes seen in their calling in the beginning.

A repentant, converted, and restored Israel will then hold the sceptre and occupy a position at the head of all the Gentile nations; the nations will be blessed through Israel; and Israel will then carry the message of the one true and living God to the nations worldwide.

Then, the entire Jewish nation and the world at large will, at long last, realize that set forth by the words yad vashem in Isaiah 56:5.
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Word Document:  Yad Vashem by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Yad Vashem by Arlen Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Responsibility, Accountability
The “Goal” — standing before the Son of Man
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken and the other left.

Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

Watch therefore; for ye know not what hour your lord doth come” (Matthew 24:40-42).

The Lord’s reference to one taken and another left opens the first of four parallel parables in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse. And each parable actually has to do with the same thing, though each parable presents matters from a different perspective.

Each parable has to do with the Lord’s dealings with His servants (Christians) during present and future times, with the coming kingdom in view. And, with each parable presenting matters from a different perspective, all four parables viewed together present a complete, composite picture in a threefold fashion:

1) The Christians’ present responsibility.

2) The Christians’ future accountability.

3) The relationship of both to the coming kingdom of Christ.

Christians have a responsibility to live their lives in a manner which reflects their high calling. “Salvation” is for a purpose, and this purpose has to do with the coming kingdom. Christians have been called “unto his kingdom and glory” (I Thessalonians 2:12; cf. I Peter 5:1, 10; II Peter 1:3). And the Biblical picture of one’s salvation is not so much saved from (“from hell”) as it is saved unto (“unto his kingdom and glory”).

“Responsibility,” in turn, demands accountability. Every Christian will one day appear before the judgment seat of Christ to render an account concerning how he carried out his responsibility. All things will be revealed in the presence of a righteous, omnipotent, omniscient Judge (Revelation 1:12-20). The previous works of the ones being judged will come under review, and the results will have a direct bearing on the Christian’s position in the kingdom which follows.

The purpose for the judgment seat, in this respect, is in keeping with the purpose for the entire present dispensation. God is today calling out the rulers who are to reign as co-heirs with His Son during the coming age, and the decisions and determinations rendered at the judgment seat concerning these individuals will have to do with their being placed in or being denied one of the numerous proffered positions which the co-heirs will occupy with Christ.

Accordingly, the end or goal toward which everything moves in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse is the coming kingdom. It is the kingdom with its glory to which Christians have been called, and any Christian failing to realize his calling therein will have failed to realize the very purpose for his salvation.

The coming kingdom is not only the end or goal toward which everything moves in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse but in the other two sections as well. God’s dealings with the Jewish people in the first section (Matthew 24:4-39) occur during and immediately following the Tribulation and lead into the kingdom, and God’s dealings with the Gentiles in the third section as well (Matthew 25:31-46) occur at the end of the Tribulation (following God’s dealings with the other two divisions of mankind) and also lead into the kingdom.

And, as evident, in a broader respect, the kingdom is the end or goal toward which everything in Scripture moves, save events in the few references describing conditions during the eternal ages beyond the Millennium (e.g., I Corinthians 15:24-28; parts of Revelation 21-22). Beginning with the opening chapters of Genesis, the emphasis is upon man holding the sceptre, ruling over a restored earth; and this emphasis never changes throughout Scripture.

Christ’s discourse on the Mount of Olives moves more to the end of the matter and presents summary information relative to concluding events in God’s dealings with the three groups of mankind (Jew, Christian, and Gentile), with the kingdom, as throughout Scripture, the objective or goal in view.

Comparing the Parables

It is clearly shown in the parable of the Householder and His servant and in the parable of the talents (Matthew 24:45-51; 25:14-30) that man ultimately placed in the position of “ruler” is the focal point (cf. Matthew 24:47; 25:21, 23). And it is no different in the other two parallel parables in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24:40-44; 25:1-13).

Note that each parable begins in a similar fashion: “Then…” (Matthew 24:40-44); “Who then…” (Matthew 24:45-51); “Then…” (Matthew 25:1-13); “For it is just as a man… [literal rendering, referring back to the parable of the ten virgins in vv. 1-13, and consequently back to the previous two parables in this section, in Matthew 24:40-51]” (Matthew 25:14-30).

Then note that each parable has been given to provide additional information which will help explain another parable. In this respect, the words “Who then” and “Then,” opening the second and third parables, refer back to the previous parable/parables.

The first parable (Matthew 24:40-44), for example, closes with the exhortation to Watch, Be Ready, “for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 24:42, 44).

The second parable immediately following (Matthew 24:45-51) opens with the words, “Who then is a faithful and wise servant…” The allusion is back to the preceding parable (vv. 40-44). The parable of the Householder and His servant [Matthew 24:45-51] has been given to provide additional information, helping to explain the preceding parable dealing with one taken and the other left [Matthew 24:40-44].

Both parables concern the same thing — faithfulness or unfaithfulness on the part of the Lord’s servants, resulting in their being accorded or being denied positions as rulers with Christ in the kingdom. And so it is with the following two parables.

This connection between the four parables can possibly be seen slightly clearer in the opening verse of the fourth parable. Note that the words, “the kingdom of heaven is” (Matthew 24:14, KJV), are in italics, indicating that they are not in the Greek text. The word “as” is a translation of the Greek word hosper, which is a connecting particle meaning “just as” or “even as.”

This is the same word translated “as” earlier in the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24:37-38), comparing the days of Noah with the days of the coming of the Son of Man. And the word is used in the same sense beginning the parable of the talents.

This word, beginning the parable of the talents, is used as a connective to show that the parable about to follow is exactly like the parable which has preceded, giving rise to the translation, “For it is just as a man…” The parable of the talents was given to help explain the previous parable, the parable of the ten virgins (or, for that matter, the two parables preceding the parable of the ten virgins as well). This parable concerns exactly the same thing — faithfulness or unfaithfulness of the Lord’s servants, resulting in their being accorded or being denied entrance into the marriage festivities and subsequent positions as rulers with Christ in the kingdom.

Received or Turned Away

The words in the text, “the one shall be taken, and the other left,” are often misunderstood by expositors. And through this misunderstanding, some mistakenly teach that these verses refer to the rapture, with one removed from the earth and another left behind on the earth. This though is not at all what is in view. (Ref. in this site: Received or Turned Away "DOES NOT" Refer to the Rapture.)

The mistake comes from thinking that the ones left remain in the field or at the mill, while the others are removed from these places. Reference to the Greek text, the context, and parallel Scripture though will show that this cannot possibly be the case. These verses reveal the Lord’s dealings with two Christians who will be in the field and two other Christians who will be grinding at the mill (representative individuals, places, and occupations) when He returns to reckon with His servants; and this reckoning will occur, not in the field or at the mill, but before the judgment seat of Christ in heaven following the rapture. The time and place of this reckoning are always the same in Scripture.

The word “taken” (vv. 40, 41) is a translation of the Greek word paralambano. This is a compound word comprised of para (“beside,” or “alongside”) and lambano (“to take,” or “to receive”). Thus, the word goes a step beyond just simply taking or receiving. It is taking or receiving the person alongside or to oneself (cf. Matthew 17:1; 20:17 where paralambano is used). This would be the word used referring to the reception of an individual as an “associate” or a “companion,” which is actually what is involved in this passage.

Then, the word “left” (vv. 40, 41) is a translation of the Greek word aphiemi, which is used in an antithetical respect to paralambano. In the light of the way paralambano is used, aphiemi could possibly best be understood by translating the word, “turn away.” That which is involved in this passage has to do with Christians before the judgment seat either being received in an intimate sense or being turned away in an opposite sense.

And the parable of the Householder and His servant, which immediately follows, is given to help explain these things. These verses are not referring to the rapture at all, but to faithful and unfaithful Christians in different walks of life as they appear before the judgment seat in heaven.

The Parallel Passage in Luke

Reference to the parallel passage in Luke’s account of the Olivet Discourse shows this same thing:

“Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man” (Luke 21:36).

Some expositors have also taken this verse as a reference to the rapture (usually those attempting selective rapture); but, again, such is not correct. This verse is actually the parallel in Luke’s gospel for not only Matthew 24:40-44 but also for the three parables which follow, covering the remainder of the Christian section of the discourse (the parable of the Householder and His servant [Matthew 24:45-51], the parable of the ten virgins [Matthew 25:1-13], and the parable of the talents [Matthew 25:14-30]).

Again, reference to the Greek text, the context, and related Scripture will show exactly how this verse is to be understood. The main problems in translation and interpretation lie in the words “that ye may be accounted worthy” and “escape all these things.”

The words, “that ye may be accounted worthy,” could be better translated, “that you may prevail over [in the sense of being strong and winning a victory]”; and the words, “escape [lit., ‘escape out of’] all these things,” refer back to the immediate context, dealing with “surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life” (Matthew 25:34-35). This verse is, thus, exhorting Christians to watch and pray relative to deliverance from involvement in the ways and practices of the world (Ephesians 6:18; cf. Ephesians 6:10-17).

(In Luke 21:36, two different words appear in the various Greek texts, which accounts for the two different translations [kataxioo, “to be accounted worthy”; katischuo, “to prevail over”]. And manuscript evidence favoring either word is somewhat divided. Both appear in a number of different manuscripts.

Thus, context becomes a major factor to ascertain the correct text, with most Greek texts and translations since the ASV [1901] favoring and using katischuo [“to prevail over”]. And that would evidently be for reasons echoed in Lenski’s Greek word studies: “No inner reasons militate against this reading; on the contrary, the inner reasons support this reading.”)

Weymouth, in his translation of the New Testament, captures the correct thought from the Greek text about as well as any English version presently available (also see the NASB):

“Beware of slumbering; at all times pray that you may be fully strengthened to escape from all these coming evils, and to take your stand in the presence of the Son of Man.”

Note also Wuest’s “Expanded Translation”:

“But be circumspect, attentive, ready, in every season being in prayer, in order that you may have sufficient strength to be escaping all these things which are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”

The words “watch,” and “pray” are in a present tense showing linear (continuous) action in the Greek text. The thought is that of Christians continually watching (always being alert, on guard) and continually praying for the strength necessary to escape out of the ways and practices of the world.

“Escape out of” is the translation of an aorist infinitive in the Greek text, showing deliverance viewed as eventual (i.e., viewed as the result of Christians continually watching and praying). And, viewed as a whole (as in Weymouth’s translation), this deliverance would occur on particular occasions at different times.

Contextually, this deliverance is not a one-time event (as the rapture), but repeated occurrences (as in Wuest’s translation). And the goal of the entire process is Christians ultimately being privileged to “stand before the Son of man.”

And standing before, or in the presence of, the Son of Man in the passage from Luke’s account of the Olivet Discourse (Luke 21:34-36) is synonymous with being received in an intimate manner by the Lord in the parallel section in Matthew’s account of the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24:40-44).
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Word Document:  Responsibility, Accountability by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Responsibility, Accountability, The “Goal” — standing before the Son of Man, By Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.
 
To website CONTENTS Page.
Present Cleansing from Sin
Significance of Christ’s Present High Priestly Ministry
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Levitical priests in the Mosaic Economy were taken from the tribe of Levi, and these priests, upon their entrance into the priesthood to perform priestly functions, were given a bath. Their complete bodies were bathed at this time, an act never to be repeated (Exodus 29:4).

Then, once they had entered into their priestly ministry, washings of another type were to occur, which had to do with parts of the body, not with the whole body. And these washings were solely for those whose complete bodies had previously been bathed. These were washings occurring during the course of their ministry as priests.

Priests ministering between the brazen altar in the courtyard and the Holy Place of the tabernacle became defiled during the course of their ministry. They still lived in a world where sin and death were present, and they still possessed the old sin nature. Ministering under these conditions, this defilement was shown through their hands and feet becoming soiled, necessitating cleansing.

To provide this cleansing, there was a brazen laver in the courtyard of the tabernacle**, located between the brazen altar and the Holy Place. This laver had upper and lower basins filled with water; and the priests, ministering between the brazen altar and the Holy Place, though their complete bodies had been bathed upon their entrance into the priesthood, had to stop and wash their hands and feet prior to entering into the Holy Place. They had to stop at the brazen laver and wash that which had become soiled prior to entering into the place where there was a seven-leafed candlestick, a table of shewbread, an altar of incense, and a veil separating them from God’s presence in the Holy of Holies (Exodus 30:18-21).

John 13:4-12

It was these established truths pertaining to washings within the Mosaic Economy which Jesus drew from in John 13:4-12 when He washed the disciples’ feet.

In this account, Jesus, following supper, arose, laid aside His garments, girded Himself with a towel, poured water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet. But when He came to Peter, there was an adverse reaction. Peter, in a very emphatic manner (a double negative appears in the Greek text), said, “Thou shalt never wash my feet.” Jesus responded, “If I wash [Gk., nipto, referring to a part of the body] thee not, thou has no part with me” (John 13:8).

This was near the end of Christ’s earthly ministry, preceding His crucifixion. Christ’s ministry (along with the ministry of the disciples whom He had called and sent out) had centered around one thing — an offer of the kingdom of the heavens to Israel, conditioned upon the nation’s repentance (Matthew 4:17-25; 10:1-8). And Christ’s statement, within context, could only have been understood one way by the disciples. Unless they allowed Christ to wash their feet, as He was demonstrating and doing, they could have no part with Him in the kingdom being proclaimed and offered to Israel.

Peter, knowing that Christ was referring to a place in the kingdom with Him, and desiring one of these places above everything else, responded to Jesus’ statement by saying, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head” (John 13:9). As evident by Peter’s response, if allowing Christ to wash his feet was a prerequisite to his having a part with Christ in the kingdom, then he wanted to go beyond allowing Christ to wash his feet. Peter wanted Christ to wash his complete body, making absolutely sure that he would have a part with Him in the kingdom.

But Jesus then stated, “He that is washed (Gk., louo, referring to the complete body] needeth not save to wash [Gk., nipto, referring to part of the body] his feet, but is clean every whit…” (John 13:10a). Jesus could only have been alluding to washings of both the complete body and parts of the body experienced by the Levitical priests in the type (in the Septuagint translation [Greek translation] of the Book of Exodus, the words louo and nipto are used to show the same distinction seen in John 13:8-10 [cf. Exodus 29:4; 30:18-21; 40:12-15]). And Jesus’ actions in this passage in John’s gospel, pointing to a future high priestly ministry which He was to occupy following His resurrection and ascension, would have to be understood in the light of this overall Old Testament type.

(Note that this act of washing the disciples’ feet, as the washings in the O.T. type, had no power in and of itself. This washing, as all washings seen in Scripture, was symbolic of something else; and the power lay in that to which the act pointed, that which it foreshadowed.)

The washings associated with the Levitical priests in the Old Testament (a washing of the complete body, followed by washings of parts of the body), in turn, pointed to, foreshadowed respectively, both Christ’s past work at Calvary and His present work in the heavenly sanctuary. Christ died for our sins, providing a cleansing typified by the complete bath which the priests were given upon their entrance into the priesthood. And Christ presently ministers as our High Priest to provide subsequent cleansings, typified by the subsequent cleansings at the laver in the type.

Thus, Christ, through washing the disciples’ feet in John chapter thirteen, was demonstrating truths typically seen through the Levitical priests washing their hands and feet at the laver in the courtyard of the tabernacle as they carried out their priestly ministry on behalf of those forming the nation of Israel.

Then, the allusion to a washing of the entire body which Christ made as He was about to wash Peter’s feet, was a reference to the prior experience of the priests upon their entrance into the priesthood.

And, as in the type, Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary is solely for the saved, for those who in the antitype of the experience of the Levitical priests at the time of their entrance into the priesthood have already had their complete bodies washed, never to be repeated. Christ’s present ministry is for those forming the one new man “in Christ,” for those who have been saved in past time and are now in a position to receive cleansing from present defilement through Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary.

Thus, as in the type, Christ’s present ministry has nothing to do with the unsaved. The unsaved are dealt with solely on the basis of Christ’s past work at Calvary — His death and shed blood. As previously stated, from a typical standpoint, the unsaved being dealt with in this manner is connected with the Levitical priests receiving a complete bath upon their entrance into the priesthood, not with subsequent washing of the hands and feet. It is only after a person has been saved, has passed from death unto life, that he can be dealt with on the basis of Christ’s present work in the sanctuary — performed by a living Christ, on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat.

(Jesus’ statement in John 13:10-11 is often used in an effort to show that Judas was not among those viewed as having been washed completely, as the other disciples, placing him in an unsaved state. However, the passage can’t be understood in this manner, for it would be out of line with both Jesus’ actions in this chapter and other Scriptures dealing with the disciples and their ministry.

It appears clear from John 13:12 — “after he had washed their feet” — that Christ washed the feet of all twelve disciples, with no distinction made between Judas and the other eleven in this respect. And He could not have included Judas among those whose feet He had washed apart from having looked upon Judas in the antitype of previously having had his complete body washed.

Christ’s act of washing the disciples’ feet in John chapter thirteen foreshadowed His present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, which is for the saved alone. Thus, through this act of washing Judas’ feet, Christ acknowledged something which is really not even an issue in the text [or any other text in Scripture for that matter] — that Judas was a saved individual, not unsaved as is so often believed and taught.

In this respect, John 13:10-11 [10b] would have to be understood in the sense of Judas’ uncleanness being associated with Christ’s present actions [washing a part of the body, following a complete bath]; and, as stated in the text, it had to do with Judas’ future actions — betraying Christ [v. 11].

Judas’ betrayal of Christ, mentioned in this verse, could, in no way, be a grounds for questioning his salvation. If it were, salvation would be brought over into the realm of works, where it can’t exist [e.g., note that Peter denied Christ three times — a similar act in many respects (Matthew 26:58, 69-75); and his salvation can’t be brought into question for this denial, for exactly the same reason that Judas’ salvation can’t be brought into question for his betrayal].

It would really make no sense to associate Judas’ actions with saved-unsaved issues [which have to be read into the text to do so]. On the other hand though, it would make perfect sense to associate his actions with unfaithfulness [as Peter’s subsequent actions, also foretold by Jesus immediately before they occurred], which is really what the text deals with.

Then note Jesus’ previous calling of Judas as one of the Twelve, to be numbered among those carrying the good news pertaining to the kingdom of the heavens to Israel. It would be completely untenable to believe that Jesus would call someone among the Twelve, who was spiritually dead, to carry a message necessitating spiritual life and understanding to a nation possessing spiritual life and capable of this type understanding.)

I John 1:5-2:2

The opening part of I John deals specifically with the same thing seen in John’s gospel — cleansing provided through Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary, drawing from the typology of the tabernacle and the ministry of the Levitical priests. And, with that being the case, the only way in which this section of Scripture can be properly understood and explained is through continual reference to the type, given to shed light upon the antitype.

This section of Scripture begins with a reference to light and darkness (I John 1:5-7a). Individuals either walk in light or in darkness, and two things exist for those walking in light which do not exist for those walking in darkness:

1) They have fellowship with the Father and the Son.

2) They receive continuous cleansing from their sins.

Then, this section in I John goes on to explain this through dealing with confession of sin (I John 1:7-10 [7b]) and Christ’s high priestly ministry (I John 2:1-2).

(Note that both textually and contextually, I John 2:1-2 has to do with the saved, not with the unsaved. The word “advocate” [v. 1] is a translation of parakletos in the Greek text [cf. John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7; ref. Chapters III, IV in the author’s book, in this site, Search for the Bride BOOK], and the word “propitiation” [v. 2] is a translation of hilasmos in the Greek text. 

Hilasmos is derived from the same root form as the word for “mercy seat” [hilasterion] in Hebrews 9:5. And Christ’s high priestly work in the heavenly sanctuary, on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat, is what is in view in I John 2:1-2.

“The whole world” at the end of verse two would have to be understood contextually. Salvation by grace is not in view in the text or context, and the expression would have to be understood in the same sense as seen in Colossians 1:6, 23, where salvation by grace is not in view either.)

Thus, this whole section in I John is about keeping oneself clean through confession of sin, allowing an individual to walk in the light and have fellowship with the Father and with His Son. And this is all made possible through Christ’s present ministry in the sanctuary, on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat.

That seen in this section of Scripture can be properly understood and explained only through referring back to the layout of the tabernacle and the ministry of the Levitical priests as they carried out their priestly duties. Light existed only one place in the tabernacle (aside from the fact that God is Light and dwelt in the Holy of Holies). The only light in the tabernacle came from the seven-leafed golden candlestick in the Holy Place. And the only way a priest could enter into the Holy Place, where light existed, was to first wash his hands and feet at the laver in the courtyard.

Only then could he enter the place where light, a table of shewbread, an altar of incense, and a veil separating the person from God existed. Otherwise, if he did not wash his hands and feet, he would find himself on the wrong side of the laver, separated from the light, the table of shewbread, the altar of incense, and the veil in the Holy Place. He, in the words of I John 1:6, would be walking in darkness, separated from fellowship with the Father and with His Son.

In this respect, two types of Christians are seen in the opening section of I John — faithful and unfaithful — those who allow Christ to wash their feet, and those who do not. And teachings surrounding the matter, to aid in one’s understanding, are drawn from Old Testament typology.
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Word Document:  Present Cleansing from Sin by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Present Cleansing from Sin by Arlen Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.
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**Tabernacle Complex layout:
To website CONTENTS Page.
Defiling One’s High Calling
Christian Involvement in the Affairs of this World
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“And he brought us out from thence [the Israelites under Moses, brought out of Egypt, in the type; Christians under Christ, brought out from this world, in the antitype], that he might bring us in, to give us the land which he sware unto our fathers [brought into an earthly land in the type; brought into a heavenly land in the antitype]” (Deuteronomy 6:23).

In the central Old Testament type, alluded to in the preceding reference, having to do with the Israelites under Moses, earthly Gentile nations dwelling in an earthly land were in view.

The antitype though, as it pertains to Christians under Christ, has to do with a heavenly land and the rulers therein. Rather than Gentile nations in an earthly land, it has to do with Satan and his angels in a heavenly land — the incumbent rulers over the Gentile nations on the earth, ruling from a heavenly realm.

Christians have been called to a heavenly land presently occupied by Satan and his angels. And their warfare is there, against Satan and his angels, not here against the earthly rulers. As Israel’s warfare was against those dwelling in the land to which the nation had been called (an earthly land), so is the Christians’ warfare against those dwelling in the land to which they have been called (a heavenly land).

That’s why Ephesians 6:12 states:

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places [‘against spirit forces of the evil one in heavenly places’].”

This is a spiritual battle which is specifically stated to not be against “flesh and blood” opponents, but against the spirit forces of Satan in heavenly places. And Christians concentrating their efforts in the spiritual warfare against the correct enemy in the correct realm, apart from distraction, is exactly what Paul had in mind in II Timothy 2:4-5:

“No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier. And if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully [i.e., according to the manner which God has revealed in His Word].”

Lawful, Unlawful Warfare

A Christian expending his time and energy in the wrong realm — which often involves a warfare against the wrong enemy in this realm (i.e., a warfare against “flesh and blood” opponents on the earth rather than against “spirit forces” in the heavens) — is not striving lawfully. It is impossible to overcome in the warfare in which Christians are to be engaged if one becomes wrapped up in “the affairs of this life.”

That’s why Christians will not be crowned apart from striving lawfully. They will have separated themselves from the only place where one can overcome and gain the victory — the spiritual warfare; and if any warfare was carried on at all in their lives, it could only have been against the wrong enemy in the wrong realm (again, separate from the only enemy and realm where one can overcome and gain the victory).

And warring against the wrong enemy in the wrong realm is something being carried out among Christians today on a scale which encompasses, after some fashion, almost the whole of Christendom (e.g., Christians opposing governmental leaders among the Gentile nations, who all hold positions under Satan and his angels in the present kingdom of the heavens [cf. Daniel 10:12-20]). Christians, not understanding the true nature of the spiritual warfare have turned things completely around, have found themselves warring against “flesh and blood” opponents, and have placed their crowns in jeopardy.

Why is this the case? Why is something of this nature — completely contrary to the clear teaching of Scripture — so prevalent within Christian activity today?

The answer can be seen through viewing what has happened, in the antitype, relative to the commission which Moses gave the twelve elders from the twelve tribes before they were sent into the land of Canaan. That is, the answer can be derived through:

1) Understanding how the elders under Moses were supposed to heed his commission during a past dispensation, in the type.

2) Then, seeing what has happened when this same commission is supposed to be heeded after exactly the same fashion by elders under Christ during the present dispensation, in the antitype.

In the type, the twelve elders which Moses sent into the land were told to go up a certain way, and that way would lead them up into the mountain (Numbers 13:17 [“a mountain” signifying a kingdom — Isaiah 2:1-4; Daniel 2:34-35, 45]). Then, while in the mountain, they were to learn everything they could about the land and the inhabitants therein. And, after learning all they could, they were to bring back word concerning their findings to the people in the twelve tribes.

The message of the twelve was to involve the strength of the people dwelling in the land, how the Israelites could move in and overcome them, all the various things about the land itself, etc. In other words, they were to find out everything they could about the kingdom — both the present kingdom under Satan and the anticipated future kingdom under God — and they were to proclaim these things to the people of Israel upon their return.

This message would provide knowledge about the hope set before them — that of going into the land, conquering the inhabitants, and realizing an inheritance therein. And this knowledge would not only provide them with an incentive to move out and be victorious over the inhabitants in the land, but it would also provide them with information concerning how this was to be accomplished.

Then, bringing this over into the antitype, the elders, the pastor-teachers, those whom God has called to lead and feed His flock, all have a central commission. They have been commissioned by the Lord to look to the land and go up a certain way, which will lead up into the mountain. And, once on the mountain, they are to find out everything they can about the things of the mountain and then proclaim these things to those under their ministry.

This is central! Everything in the pastor-teachers’ ministry should revolve around this, for it involves the hope set before every Christian, which centers around the very reason for their salvation.

And the only place which God has provided for those whom He has called to go up into the mountain and learn these things for this particular purpose is His Word.

Looking to the land and going up a certain way, which will lead up into the mountain, is looking to and delving into those things in the Word having to do with the kingdom. And, so doing, the person is to traverse the Word from one end to the other, learning all he can about the complete scope of the kingdom.

Then he is to take this message to the people, providing them with a knowledge of the hope set before them — that of going into the land, conquering the inhabitants, and realizing an inheritance therein. And this knowledge will not only provide them with an incentive to move out and be victorious over the inhabitants of the land, but it will also provide them with information concerning how this is to be accomplished.

But…

But a major problem exists. The elders under Christ — the leaders whom God has placed among His people, the pastor-teachers — have not followed the command in Numbers 13:17. They have not looked toward the land and gone up a certain way, which leads up into the mountain.

They, not having followed the Lord’s command, don’t understand the true nature of the spiritual warfare, how it is to be fought, what is at stake in the fight, and all the various things about the kingdom — both present and future. Not having been there themselves and not understanding these things, they can’t bring back a message to those under their ministry concerning that which is there, the hope set before Christians, all the various things about victory over the enemy, etc. Such would be impossible.

And the pastor-teachers’ failure to heed the Lord’s commission after this fashion has produced far-reaching ramifications seen throughout Christendom.

Christians, because of the failure of pastor-teachers in this realm, are not knowledgeable concerning the various facets of the Word of the Kingdom. And this is the reason so many Christians find themselves wrapped up in “the affairs of this life” and, within such actions, often also find themselves engaged in a battle against the wrong enemy in the wrong realm.

This is the reason that numerous Christians find themselves involved in the political structure of this present world system, often encouraged by their religious leaders to do so — that is, find themselves involved in Satan’s present kingdom rather than looking to the Lord and His coming kingdom. 

Referencing a type in I Samuel, the preceding would be comparable to David’s faithful men during his time of exile (I Samuel 19:1ff; I Samuel 22:1-2) leaving their place with David, going back to Saul’s kingdom, and involving themselves in his kingdom.

And what will be the end result of the present state of Christendom (which is not far removed, though after a different fashion, from that of the Israelites at Christ’s first coming after the Scribes and Pharisees had finished their work)? It was given by Christ Himself, almost 2,000 years ago, before the Church had even been brought into existence.

Because of the working of the leaven which the woman placed in the “three measures of meal” (apparently very early in the dispensation) — which will work until “the whole” has been leavened (Matthew 13:33; cf. Matthew 16:6), resulting in the “lukewarm” condition in Christendom at the end of the dispensation (Revelation 3:14-21) — Christ asked:

“Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith [‘the faith’] on the earth?” (Luke 18:8). 

The expression, “the faith,” is peculiarly related to the Word of the Kingdom (cf. I Timothy 6:12-15, 19; II Timothy 4:7-8; Jude 1:3); and the way in which the question is worded in the Greek text indicates that a negative response is anticipated. The Son of Man is not going to find “the faith” on the earth at the time of His return. He will not find the true message surrounding things pertaining to the kingdom being taught among Christians in the Churches at this time.

Why? Again, because the pastor-teachers have not heeded the Lord’s commission. They have not looked toward the land and gone up a certain way, which leads up into the mountain. They know little to nothing about the land and its inhabitants; and, resultingly, the people under their ministry know little to nothing about these things either.

And that’s where we are. That’s the way matters surrounding the Word of the Kingdom exist during the closing days of the present dispensation.

Will conditions improve? Not according to Scripture! In fact, according to Scripture, deterioration will continue. Matters will only become worse, for “the whole” is to be leavened.
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Word Document:  Defiling One’s High Calling by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Defiling One’s High Calling By Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
In Such a Time
The Son of Man Coming at an Unexpected Time
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

But know this, that if the good man of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 24:42-44).

Following a ministry lasting about three and one-half years, climaxed by His rejection, death, burial, and resurrection, Christ ministered to His disciples for a short period of time before His ascension. He spent forty days teaching His disciples “things pertaining to the kingdom of God.”

Then, after instructing them to wait in Jerusalem, explaining the reason, Christ, as the disciples watched, ascended into heaven from the Mt. of Olives (Acts 1:3-9).

Christ, during His earthly ministry, spoke of the day when He would depart (John 14:2-3). Mark briefly mentions Christ’s departure at the end of his gospel, Luke briefly mentions this at the end of his gospel and at the beginning of Acts, and Paul mentions this in his first epistle to Timothy (Mark 16:19; Luke 24:50-51; Acts 1:2, 9; I Timothy 3:16).

Actually, very little is stated in Scripture about Christ’s departure. Only the bare facts are given. The emphasis is upon His return, not upon His departure. His return and things having to do with His return are seen throughout Scripture, beginning with the manner in which Scripture is structured in the opening thirty-four verses of Genesis (Genesis 1:1-2:3).

(Note that Genesis 1:1-2:3 sets forth a skeletal framework upon which all subsequent Scripture rests. The whole panorama of Scripture is set forth after the preceding fashion in these opening thirty-four verses, with the remainder of Scripture providing all the sinews, flesh, and skin to clothe the initial skeletal framework, i.e., the remainder of Scripture simply provides commentary for the opening thirty-four verses [cf. Ezekiel 37:1ff].

There are six days of redemptive [restorative] work, foreshadowing 6,000 years of redemptive [restorative] work, followed by a seventh day, foreshadowing a seventh 1,000-year period of rest [II Peter 1:16-18; 3:8].

And, subsequent commentary — the sinews, flesh, and skin — call attention not only to Christ’s first coming during the six days [during the 6,000 years] but His second coming at the end of these six days, to reign during the seventh day [during the seventh 1,000-year period].

Thus, everything was set and established in an unchangeable manner, through this septenary structure, at the very beginning of Scripture.)

Christ, calling attention to His soon departure in John chapter fourteen, and Luke’s account of His departure in Acts, both have corresponding statements about His return.

Christ’s promise that He would return in John chapter fourteen can only have to have to do with His return for the Church (preceding the Tribulation), called into existence shortly afterwards in Acts chapter two.

But the statement concerning His return in Acts chapter one, given by two men who were present, could only have to do with His return to Israel, with the nations in view (following the Tribulation).

In the former, Christ returns to take His disciples to the place where He would be, in the heavens (John 14:3); in the latter, Christ returns with outstretched hands to bless the nation to which He is returning, the nation of Israel here on the earth (cf. Luke 24:50-51; Acts 1:9-11), with blessings then flowing out to the nations through Israel (Genesis 12:1-3).

And the preceding (returning both before and following the Tribulation) should be viewed as one return of Christ, not two returns. Christ’s return has two aspects to it — one relative to the Church and the other relative to Israel, with the nations also in view.

The matter is much like the gospel, the good news. There is one complete gospel, with different aspects to the good news, not two gospels.

The initial aspect has to do with the good news concerning the grace of God, which has to do with the unsaved, and is foreshadowed by that Divine restorative work seen on day one in Genesis chapter one.

The continuing aspect has to do with the good news concerning the coming Glory of Christ, which has to do with the saved, and is foreshadowed by that Divine restorative work seen on days two through six in Genesis chapter one.

And restorative works throughout all six days are with a view to the seventh day seen beginning the second chapter, with the complete six days leading into the seventh, forming, as previously stated, a septenary structure upon which the whole of subsequent Scripture rests.

And there are two inseparably related ways to view this septenary structure:

One way has to do with six being man’s number and God’s work during the six days having to do with restoring ruined man throughout Man’s Day. And this is with a view to matters being finished preceding a seventh day of rest.

And the other way has to do with the time involved in this restorative work. These six days of restorative work foreshadow 6,000 years of restorative work (occurring throughout Man’s 6,000-year Day), with a view to this work being finished preceding a seventh 1,000-year period of rest.

Any way that the matter is viewed, everything moves toward that seventh day. “Six” is an incomplete number, one short of completion. And all of God’s works must be brought to completion, which can only be done with a view to a seventh day, a seventh 1,000- year period of rest, wherein completion lies.

Christ’s Return for His Church

How close are we to the end of the sixth day, the sixth 1,000-year period? Time can only be fast running out, and we can only be much closer to the end of six days, 6,000 years, than individuals dare to imagine.

Three dispensations of 2,000 years each comprise Man’s 6,000-year Day, corresponding to the three divisions of mankind — Jew, Gentile, and Christian.

The first dispensation (Gentile), from Adam to Abraham, has run its course. The second dispensation (Jewish), from Abraham to the Messianic Kingdom, has seven years to run (the coming seven-year Tribulation). Time during this dispensation was stopped seven years short of completion, and God began to deal with Christians for a third 2,000-year dispensation, which is almost complete.

Once the present dispensation has run its course, the Church will be removed, God will turn back to Israel and complete the last seven years of the prior dispensation, and Christ’s return in possession of the kingdom (with all ensuing events leading into the kingdom) will follow.

1) Condition of the Church in That Day

Conditions in Christendom in that day will be exactly in line with how Scripture stated that they would exist at the end of the present dispensation — Christians, enmeshed in the things of the world, paying little to no attention to the times in which we live, putting that day far from them.

Accordingly, that day will overtake many Christians unaware. Numerous Christians will be very much like the people during Noah’s day, eating, drinking, marrying, and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, with the Flood coming and destroying them all.

That is to say, most Christians will be going about every day activities, giving little thought to the fact that God is about to once again step into man’s affairs and bring about major changes.

God stepped into man’s affairs at times in the past, with man totally oblivious to the matter. And God is about to once again step into man’s affairs, with man, once again, totally oblivious to the matter.

Man couldn’t do anything about it in the past, aside from suffering the consequences of being unprepared. And man won’t be able to do any more about it in the future than in the past; and he, likewise, will suffer the consequences of being unprepared.

2) Two Types of Christians in That Day

When Christ returns for the Church at the end of the present dispensation, all Christians — faithful and unfaithful alike — will be removed to appear before the judgment seat of Christ.

Many in that day, as previously seen, will be caught unprepared for that which will have occurred and is about to occur. And they can only experience the things awaiting unfaithful servants of the Lord, those not having looked for His return and not having conducted their lives accordingly.

Others in that day though will be prepared for that which will have occurred and is about to occur. And they will experience the things awaiting faithful servants of the Lord, those having looked for His return and having conducted their lives accordingly.

(For both sides of the preceding picture, note how Paul presented the matter in I Thessalonians 4:13-5:9.

For comments on this section of Scripture in I Thessalonians, see the author’s four pamphlets titled, “The Rapture Part I.pdf,  Part II,  Part III,  Part IV.”  Also in this site The Rapture I, II, III.)

Christ’s Return to Israel, the Nations

Christ’s return to the earth at least seven years following His return for and dealings with the Church will occur following Israel’s repentance. The severity of particularly the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation will, after 2,600 years of Gentile rule and dominance, bring Israel to the place of repentance. And, true to His many promises, God will hear, remember His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and send the Deliverer (Exodus 2:23-3:12; II Chronicles 6:24-27; 7:12-14).

The Deliverer Whom God will send at this time will be the same One Who was present in Israel’s midst 2,000 years earlier — the One Whom the Jewish people rejected, spat upon, smote, and crucified ( Matthew 26:67; 27:22-25). This is the One Who will appear in Israel’s midst in that coming day. 

And to better understand exactly what type situation will exist at that time, note two things:

The Jewish people will be placed in the position of having just crucified their Messiah.

And not only will the Jewish people be placed in this position, but every Jew living in that day — no exceptions — will be held personally responsible for Christ’s crucifixion.

On the former, note that God stopped the clock (so to speak) marking off time in the Jewish dispensation at the time of the crucifixion, ushering in a new dispensation fifty-three days later, on the day of Pentecost in Acts chapter two.

And, with the beginning of the Tribulation, God will re-start the clock (so to speak) marking off time in the Jewish dispensation, completing the last seven years, placing the Jews alive in that day in the position of having just crucified their Messiah in relation to time in the dispensation.

On the latter, every Jew alive in that day, regardless of the passing of generations, will be seen by God as directly responsible for “all the righteous blood shed upon the earth,” extending all the way back to “the blood of righteous Abel” ( Matthew 23:35, 37; cf. Genesis 4:1ff; 45:1-4; Zechariah 12:10-14; Matthew 21:33-45; Revelation 1:7-8).

That foreshadowed by events on the seventh day in Genesis 2:1-3 awaits Israel and the nations (foreshadowed as well by events every time Israel kept the Sabbath [Exodus 31:13-17]). But Israel and the nations must first pass through that which Scripture presents occurring at the end of Man’s Day, the Tribulation, Daniel’s unfulfilled Seventieth-Week.

The darkest time in man’s history (the Tribulation) awaits Israel and the nations, to be followed by the brightest time in man’s history (the Messianic Era).

And both can only occur in the very near future. 

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Word Document:  In Such a Time by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - In Such a Time by Arlen Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Wilt Thou Go…?
For Christians, the Question of All Questions
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, ‘Wilt though go with this man?’ And she said, ‘I will go’” (Genesis 24:58).

The question which Rebekah was asked in Genesis 24:58 (“Wilt thou go with this man?”) and her response (“I will go”) form the heart of the most important matter that will ever confront any Christian at any time throughout the present dispensation. The question and corresponding answer have to do with the very reason for a Christian’s salvation.

A person has been saved for a purpose, and Genesis 24:58 has to do with that purpose.

Genesis chapter twenty-four forms an integral part of a larger type covering five chapters — 
Genesis 21; 22; 23; 24; 25. And these five chapters together, in a type-antitype framework, set forth a chronological sequence of events relative to Christ, Israel, and the Church, beginning with Christ’s birth and ending with realized blessings for man during the coming Messianic Era.

In these chapters,

“Abraham,” the father of Isaac, typifies God, the Father of Jesus.

“Sarah,” Abraham’s wife, typifies Israel, the wife of God.

“Abraham’s servant,” sent into the far country to obtain a bride for Isaac, typifies the Holy Spirit, sent into the far country to obtain a bride for Jesus.

“Rebekah,” the bride for Isaac, whom Abraham’s servant procured, typifies the bride for God’s Son, for whom the Holy Spirit is presently searching.

“Abraham’s subsequent remarriage” typifies God subsequently restoring Israel to her prior place as His wife (a divorce has occurred, necessitating a remarriage).

In this respect,

Chapter twenty-one has to do with “the birth of Isaac,” typifying the birth of Christ;

Chapter twenty-two has to do with “the offering of Isaac,” typifying the offering of Christ;

Chapter twenty-three has to do with “the death of Sarah,” typifying the setting aside of Israel;

Chapter twenty-four has to do with “Abraham’s servant searching for a bride for Isaac in the far country,” typifying the Holy Spirit in the world today searching for a bride for Christ;

Chapter twenty-five has to do with “the remarriage of Abraham,” to Keturah, typifying the future restoration of Israel (with remarriage occurring).

Note the context of chapter twenty-four. Events in this chapter occur between Sarah’s death (Genesis 23) and Abraham’s remarriage (Genesis 25); and, in the antitype, they foreshadow events occurring during the present dispensation, between the past setting aside and the future restoration of Israel.

The Holy Spirit is in the world today seeking a bride for God’s Son. That’s what Genesis chapter twenty-four is about. This chapter is not about salvation per se. Rather, it is about the purpose for salvation.

Abraham sent his servant into the far country to procure a bride for his son. And before the servant ever left Abraham’s home to fulfill his mission, Abraham made him swear that the search would be carried out solely among his own people, among those referred to as “my kindred” (Genesis 24:3-4, 9).

Then the servant took “all the goods of his master” on ten camels (a number signifying completion) and departed into the far country to search for and procure a bride for Isaac — a bride which must come from Abraham’s own people (Genesis 24:10).

Finding the prospective bride, Rebekah, Abraham’s servant then began to give Rebekah “jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment” (Genesis 24:53). These were from Abraham’s goods, in the servant’s possession, which Abraham had given unto His son, Isaac (Genesis 24:36; cf. Genesis 25:5). And all these goods would equally belong to the son’s bride, whom the servant had been sent into the far country to search for and procure.

And, in the antitype, the preceding is exactly what has been occurring in the world during the past 2,000 years. God sent the Spirit into the world 2,000 years ago to search for and procure a bride for His Son (Acts 2:1ff); and the Spirit, in perfect accord with the type, has been searching for the bride, since that time, from among the people of God.

The primary task of the Holy Spirit throughout the dispensation, again, in perfect accord with the type, is to call attention to the offer being made — as the Spirit gives to and displays before the prospective bride all of the Father’s goods which He has given to His Son, showing the prospective bride that which could be hers, as well, during the Son’s coming reign (cf. John 16:13-15; Romans 8:17-23).

And the search is almost over. The dispensation has almost run its course. The time when the Spirit will have completed His work, subsequently removing the bride, is almost upon us (Genesis 24:60ff).

Acceptance or Refusal

The Holy Spirit’s search for a bride for God’s Son is a work subsequent to His work pertaining to man’s eternal salvation.

Bringing the former to pass (a work effecting man’s removal from his dead, alienated state, through the birth from above) allows the Spirit to bring the latter to pass (a work involving the search for and procurement of the bride). And this subsequent work of the Spirit has to do with the central purpose for His former work.

The question, “Wilt thou go with this man,” brought over into the antitype, is a question directed solely to those within the family of God, to Christians. It is a question which involves following the present leadership of the Spirit, with a view to that which lies out ahead. It is a question which involves allowing the Spirit to open the Word to a person’s understanding, allowing the Spirit to lead that person “into all truth.” And this truth, textually, can only center around the things of the Father which He has given to the Son, something which Christians alone can fully grasp and understand (I Corinthians 2:9-14).

And through the Spirit opening the Word in this manner, Christians are being extended an invitation to have a part in this future glory; and Christians, relative to this invitation, can do one of two things: They can either accept the invitation or they can refuse the invitation.

Acceptance is associated with one day becoming part of the bride of Christ (and realizing the Son’s inheritance with Him), as Rebekah’s acceptance had to do with her one day becoming the bride of Isaac (and realizing the son’s inheritance with him).

But a Christian’s refusal will leave the person in a position where he cannot realize any of these things, as a refusal on Rebekah’s part, had she done so, would have left her in exactly the same position relative to Isaac and his inheritance.

Either way though, acceptance or refusal, the family relationship remains unchanged. Rebekah’s acceptance wrought no change in her position within Abraham’s family; nor would there have been a change had she refused. And so it is with Christians today.

A Christian’s presently possessed eternal salvation was wrought through a past, completed work of the Spirit based on the past, completed work of God’s Son at Calvary. Thus, eternal salvation is a finished work, wrought entirely through and on the basis of Divine intervention; and no change can ever occur.

Salvation by grace through faith — the good news pertaining to the grace of God — is one thing; but “so great salvation,” “the saving of the soul” (Hebrews 2:3; 10:39) — the good news pertaining to the coming glory of Christ — is something else entirely. And it is the latter, not the former, which the Spirit’s ministry to Christians centers around throughout the dispensation.

Christians have been saved for a revealed purpose, the central mission of the Spirit in the world today is to bring that purpose to pass, and the decision concerning having a part in that purpose is left entirely to each individual Christian. A Christian can “go with this Man” — the Spirit sent into the world to procure a bride for the Son, the One through Whom the offer is being extended — or he can refuse to go.

This decision is the Christian’s alone to make. And the decision which he makes will have far reaching ramifications.

The Goal

The goal, of course, is that set forth in the latter part of Genesis 24, leading into the things set forth in Genesis 25. It is a successful completion of the search, followed by a removal of the bride, followed by marriage. And this will, in turn, be followed by Israel’s restoration and future blessings, exactly as seen in the type in Genesis.

(All Christians will be removed from the earth at the same time, shown by Rebekah and the damsels accompanying her going forth on ten camels to meet Isaac [signifying completion, i.e., they all went forth (cf. Genesis 24:10, 61)].

However, Rebekah alone is seen taking a veil and covering herself when meeting Isaac [a type of the wedding garment to be worn by the bride alone when meeting Christ (Genesis 24:64-65; cf. Revelation 19:7-8)].)

After Abraham’s servant had procured the bride for Isaac, he removed the bride from the far country. And, at the same time, Isaac came forth from his home to meet Rebekah. They met at a place between her home and his home; and they then went to his home, where she became his wife (Genesis 24:61-67).

And so will it be with Christ and His bride.

After the Holy Spirit has procured the bride, He will remove the bride from the earth. And, at the same time, Christ will come forth from heaven to meet His bride. They will meet at a place between the bride’s home and His home; and they will then go to His home, where the bride will become His wife (cf. I Thessalonians 4:14-17; Revelation 1:10; 4:1-2; 19:7).

Then, that which is revealed in Genesis chapter twenty-five can be brought to pass. Messianic blessings will be ushered in; and the glories of the Son, with His consort queen, will be manifested for all of creation to behold (Psalm 24:1-10; Isaiah 2:1-4; Revelation 20:1-3a).

The present search for and the future glory awaiting the bride of Christ centers around the greatest thing that God has ever designed for redeemed man — to co-inherit with His Son, occupying positions on the throne with Him in that day when He is revealed in all His power and glory.

And it is this glory and co-heirship which the Spirit has been sent into the world to reveal to Christians. Until the search for the bride has been completed, the revelation of the Son’s coming glory will continue, and the invitation will remain open. But when the search has been completed…
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Word Document:  Wilt Thou Go… by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Wilt Thou Go…?, For Christians, the Question of All Questions, By Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
“Salvation is Of the Jews”
The Complete Panorama of Salvation Effected through the Jews
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22). 

God’s complete plan of salvation/deliverance for fallen man, whether past, present, or future, is effected through one nation and one person from that nation, which can trace its/His origin/existence on earth to one man and his progeny. “Salvation” is effected through Abraham and his seed, through Isaac, Jacob, and Jacob’s twelve sons, from whom sprang the nation of Israel, from which Christ came.

And salvation, in this respect, does not have its origin with the birth of Abraham, or his seed, extending to the birth of Christ 2,000 years later.

Rather salvation, inseparably associated with the Jewish people, has its origin in God’s activities preceding man’s creation and fall, at the time of the restoration of the earth beginning in Genesis 1:2b ff (I Peter 1:18-20; Revelation 13:8), with a continuing Divine, restorative work seen from that point in time forward.

Thus, even during the 2,000-year period extending from Adam to Abraham, Abraham and his progeny still occupy center-stage in this respect. Preceding Abraham, matters regarding salvation are seen in the loins of Abraham; following Abraham, matters regarding salvation are seen in the seed of Abraham.

(For additional, more-detailed information on the preceding, refer to the author’s pamphlet, “In the Loins of Abraham” in this site.)

The birth of Abraham 2,000 years beyond man’s creation and fall, the subsequent bringing into existence of the nation of Israel 500 years later, and the crucifixion of Israel’s Messiah at the end of an additional 1,500 years, all happened at appointed times in man’s history.

But the existence of the nation of Israel and the death of Christ, in another frame of reference, not only predate Abraham but predate man’s creation and fall.

“…the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8b).

An impossibility? In man’s finite wisdom and ways, “Yes”; but, “Not so” in God’s infinite wisdom and ways (Ecclesiastes 3:14-15; Isaiah 28:21; 48:3-5; 55:8-9).

Note, for example, if “salvation is of the Jews,” which it is plainly declared to be, how could man be saved over the 2,500-year period between man’s fall and the bringing into existence, during Moses’ day, of the nation through which salvation was to be effected?

Or, if salvation can be found only in Jesus the Christ, a Jew from the nation through which salvation is to be effected, through the events of Calvary and His shed blood — or a continuing aspect of salvation through Christ’s current ministry in the heavenly sanctuary on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat — how could man have realized either or both aspects of salvation during the 4,000-year period preceding Calvary?

And, if, as previously seen, Christ was “slain from the foundation of the world,” which He plainly was (Revelation 13:8, referencing God’s activity at the time of Genesis 1:2b ff; cf. I Peter 1:18-20), where was the only nation which could slay Christ at this time — a nation which, of necessity, had to be present but would not exist in history for another 2,500 years?

The “paschal lamb” was given to Israel, “Christ” was the paschal Lamb, and only Israel could slay this Lamb (Exodus 12:1ff). Again, how could Israel be present when the paschal Lamb was slain prior to man’s creation and fall, at the time seen in Revelation 13:8?

The simple fact of the matter is that ISRAEL HAD TO BE PRESENT! Apart from Israel, there could be no such thing as the existence of any part of that seen in the whole panorama of salvation at any point in man’s 6,000-year history, or even a few days before this when God began restoring the ruined creation.

And, to continue from that point, in like manner, APART FROM ISRAEL seen at the center of everything during present time, or any time in all of man’s future history, there can be no such thing as any part of the overall salvation process ever entering into the picture.

Salvation — Past, Present — Israel in the Old Testament

Beginning with the inception of the nation of Israel under Moses, the complete panorama of salvation in the Old Testament, dating back to the time of God’s beginning work in the restoration of the material creation (Genesis 1:2b ff), can easily be shown.

God’s requirement to rectify the sin problem, brought into existence through man’s fall, was set forth in the opening chapters of Genesis, preceding, at the time of, and following man’s fall.

Preceding man’s fall, Israel slays Christ (Genesis 1; cf. I Peter 1:18-20; Revelation 13:8).

At the time of man’s fall, God slays one or more innocent animals (Genesis 3).

Then, following man’s fall, Cain slays Abel, typifying Israel slaying Christ (Genesis 4).

In each instance, death and shed blood are seen; and, as set forth in both the restoration of the material creation in Genesis chapter one and the provision for Adam and Eve in Genesis chapter three, a Divine work, solely of the Lord, is seen.

Thus, salvation is “of the Jews,” the nation descending from Abraham (John 4); salvation is “of the Lord,” solely a Divine work (Genesis 1:2b ff; Jonah 2:9); and salvation is via “death and shed blood,” that which God requires (Genesis 1; 3; 4).

Now, note how this is handled in Exodus 12:1ff at the time of the inception of the nation, 2,500 years later during Moses’ day. Again, the matter is handled via death and shed blood at ALL points.

A passing from death unto life (John 5:24), a past aspect of salvation, had to be the first thing to occur — in complete keeping with that initially seen in God’s restorative work on day one in Genesis 1:2-5 [2b]. And this occurred through the death of paschal lambs and the proper application of the blood (Exodus 12:1-13).

Then, the subsequent institution of a priesthood and a priestly ministry in the camp of Israel continued the thought of salvation in a present respect, in complete keeping with that initially typified in God’s restorative work on days two through six in Genesis 1:6-25, preceding man’s creation (Genesis 1:26-28). And this occurred through the death and shed blood of animal sacrifices (Exodus 40:12-16; Leviticus 1:1-17:16).

And, with the tabernacle as the place of sacrifice — with its brazen altar, mercy seat, and God dwelling above the mercy seat between the cherubim, dwelling in the people’s midst, forming a theocracy — the goal, made known at Sinai, was for a cleansed people to dwell in the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, within a theocracy.

And within this theocracy, Israel was to dwell at the head of the nations, with the nations evangelized by and blessed through Israel (Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 53:1ff).

Salvation — Past, Present — Christians in the New Testament

In the light of Hebrews 10:4, the efficacy of Old Testament animal sacrifices is often questioned:

“For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins” (cf. Hebrews 10:11).

But, if efficacy cannot be seen in the sacrifices, why did God instruct that they be offered?

Then, beyond that, it is clear that God recognized efficacy through these sacrifices.

The seeming problem though can be easily resolved. Note the very next verse, Hebrews 10:5, in the light of Revelation 13:8 (Christ “slain from the foundation of the world”):

“Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldst not, but a body thou hast prepared me.”

Christ was slain “from the foundation of the world,” but not in a human body, for this preceded man’s creation and Christ’s incarnation. And God evidently recognized the efficacy of animal sacrifices for the first 4,000 years of human history on the basis of that having occurred in Revelation 13:8.

But once God took on human form in the person of His Son, died and shed His blood at Calvary (Acts 20:28), matters with regard to animal sacrifices and the Son “slain from the foundation of the world,” of necessity, changed (Hebrews 9:11-28; 10:10-20). Animal sacrifices were no longer necessary or efficacious, for the One “slain from the foundation of the world” had now died, as a Man for man, shedding His blood for fallen man.

He had now died as the paschal Lamb in Exodus 12:1ff, now it was the blood of this latter slaying of the paschal Lamb which was to be applied, and this was to be accomplished simply “by faith,” “by believing” (John 3:16; Acts 16:30-31; Ephesians 2:8-9).

Then, as in the Old Testament priestly ministry in connection with the tabernacle and shed blood, Christ subsequently began/is presently ministering on behalf of Christians, on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat in the heavenly tabernacle (Hebrews 4:14-16; 9:11-28; I John 1:5-2:2).

And, where Scripture takes matters in this present aspect of salvation is exactly as matters were seen occurring in the camp of Israel under Moses in the Old Testament type. This MUST be the case, for the antitype MUST follow the type in exact detail. BOTH originate from the same Divine mind, necessitating the same Divine, corresponding perfection.

A theocracy, with a rule over the nations from an earthly land, awaited the seed of Abraham in the Old Testament; and a theocracy, with a rule over the nations from a heavenly land, awaits the seed of Abraham today (Christians are the seed of Abraham through being “in Christ,” Abraham’s Seed [Galatians 3:29]).

Salvation Future, During the Messianic Era — Israel and the Nations

During the coming Messianic Era, a repentant, cleansed, and restored Israel — restored as the wife of Jehovah — will dwell in a restored land ruling over the nations. Occupying this position, the Jewish people will be God’s evangels to the nations, carrying the message of the one true and living God throughout the earth, with the nations being blessed through Israel (Isaiah 2:2-4; 43:7-10).

And Israel’s Messiah, God in the person of His Son, will dwell in their midst, seated on David’s throne, forming a theocracy on earth once again (Ezekiel 37:21-28).

During this same 1,000-year era, Christians, forming Christ’s bride, will dwell in the same heavenly land presently occupied by Satan and his angels (the incumbent rulers over the nations, ruling from this sphere). And Christ, with His bride, will be seated on His Own throne in this heavenly sphere, ruling the nations with “a rod of iron” (Romans 8:18-23; Hebrews 3:1; Revelation 2:26-28; 3:21).

Christ, in this respect, will have a dual reign — seated on David’s throne in the midst of His people, Israel, on earth, and seated on His Own throne, with His bride, in the heavens.

With Everything Revolving Around Israel

As seen, Scripture places Israel in a position at the center of anything and everything having to do with man’s salvation, whether past, present, or future.

Israel brought forth and slew the Saviour, allowing for a past aspect of salvation. This Jewish Saviour is presently performing a work as High Priest, allowing for a present aspect of salvation. And this Jewish Saviour will one day occupy the position of a King-Priest in Jerusalem, after the order of Melchizedek, allowing for a future aspect of salvation.

Then, it was Israel which gave us God’s Word, a Jewish book, relating all that God would have man know about the matter, a living Word which is able to build one up and give him an inheritance in Christ’s coming kingdom (Acts 20:32).

ALL IS JEWISH! Relative to salvation, remove the Jew, and you have NOTHING! Keep the Jew in his proper place, and you have EVERYTHING!
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Word Document:  “Salvation is Of the Jews” by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Salvation is of the Jews by Arlen Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.
  
To website CONTENTS Page.
The World Today, in That Coming Day
The Prophets Have Spoken, and Their Words Will Come to Pass
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body, the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the Lord thy God hath given thee, in the siege, and in the straitness [distress], wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee.

So that the man that is tender among you, and very delicate, his eye shall be evil toward his brother, and toward the wife of his bosom, and toward the remnant of his children which he shall leave.

So that he will not give to any of them the flesh of his children whom he shall eat: because he hath nothing left him in the siege, and in the straightness [distress], wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee in all thy gates.

The tender and delicate woman among you, which would not adventure to set the sole of her foot upon the ground for delicateness and tenderness, her eye shall be evil toward the husband of her bosom, and toward her son, and toward her daughter,

And toward her young one [after-birth] that cometh out from between her feet, and toward her children whom she shall bear: for she shall eat them for want of all things secretly in the siege and straightness, wherewith thine enemy shall distress thee in thy gates.

If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD.

Then the Lord will make thy plagues wonderful [remarkable], and the plagues of thy seed, even great plagues, and of long continuance, and sore sickness, and of long continuance… And ye shall be left few in number, whereas ye were as the stars of heaven for multitude; because thou wouldest not obey the voice of the Lord thy God (Deuteronomy 28:53-59, 62).

(Note that the warnings and curses in Deuteronomy chapter twenty-eight have to do with the Jewish people alone, though the Gentile nations have been and will be caught up in the matter.

The expression, “the Lord thy God,” appears three times in the quoted section [Deuteronomy 28:53, 58, 62; cf. Deuteronomy 28:1-2, 8-9, et al; Deuteronomy 30:1-10]. And Israel is the only nation on the face of the earth with a God, allowing for this expression — a Biblical teaching with its basis in Genesis 9:24-27.

“The gods of the nations” — all of the Gentile nations, with Israel not to be reckoned among the nations — are clearly revealed to be nothing compared to the one true and living God, the God of Israel [Psalm 96:5; cf. Psalm 33:12; 72:18]. Or, in the light of II Corinthians 4:4, along with Daniel 10:12-20 — Satan, “the god of this world [‘age’]” — “the gods of the nations” are, as well, clearly revealed to be demons.)

The quoted verses from Deuteronomy chapter twenty-eight (cf. Leviticus 26) are both preceded and followed by prophesied judgments which have befallen the Jewish people at times in the past but are about to befall the same people after a fashion without precedent in the 3,500-year history of the nation. God is about to pull out all stops in order to place the Jewish people in such dire straits that repentance WILL ultimately be forthcoming.

The severity of that which the Third Reich brought upon the Jewish people in Europe immediately before and during the WWII years, though only part of world Jewry was directly affected, didn’t bring about repentance; nor did any and all of the persecution going back over two millenniums, to a time preceding Messiah’s first advent, bring about repentance.

But that about to befall the nation during an unfulfilled seven years remaining in the Jewish dispensation during Man’s Day —Daniel’s unfulfilled Seventieth Week — will be of such severity that the nation will be left without a choice other than to call upon the God of their fathers.

As previously stated, many of the judgments described in Leviticus chapter twenty-six and Deuteronomy chapter twenty-eight have befallen the Jewish people in the past. Accordingly, expositors sometimes look at these different times in past history for fulfillments of these sections of Scripture.

But there is only ONE TIME in all of human history where ALL OF THESE THINGS, IN ALL OF THEIR SEVERITY, CAN BE SEEN BEFALLING ALL OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE AT THE SAME TIME. And that time is both yet future and almost upon us.

Evidently, millions of Jews alive in the world today are going to find themselves leaving that typified by the time of plenty during Joseph’s day (for it will end, exactly as in the type) and entering into that typified by the time of famine which then followed during Joseph’s day (for it will then begin, exactly as in the type).

And also, exactly as in the type, that about to befall the Jewish people will be OF SUCH A SEVERE NATURE that previous conditions, of a completely opposite nature, will not even be remembered in that day (Genesis 41:25-32, 53-57).

The World Today, in That Coming Day

Evident from the times in which we live and that which can be seen occurring all around us (living at a time very near the end of the dispensation, with lawlessness, civil unrest, homosexuality, etc. running rampant, and unrest in the Middle East existing on a scale heretofore unseen), events occurring in the world today can only be, at least after some fashion, setting the stage for that which will be occurring when time during Daniel’s Seventieth Week, the Tribulation, begins.

And, as seen in that which Christ revealed to His disciples in the Olivet Discourse, wars, famines, and pestilences (plagues, diseases) are things which will mark the first part of the Tribulation (Matthew 24:7; Luke 21:11), with famine singled out as a major factor during the last half of the Tribulation (Revelation 6:3-8). But, with famine of the nature which will exist in those days, other things — plagues, diseases, and all types of unrest — could only continue from the first half of the Tribulation and accompany the famine.

And the world is rapidly moving in this direction on both fronts — famine, with the accompanying plagues, diseases, and unrest.

Famine is already a major problem in certain parts of the world, and, with the passage of time, it can only increasingly become a major problem worldwide.

An increase in food production during modern times has not kept pace with the increase in world population. Global population has doubled during about the past half century, and it is expected to double again during a comparable length of time in the future. With the passing of each day, about one-quarter million people are added to the about six and one-half billion inhabitants of the earth.

(A doubling of the population is not a doubling of a previous number but a doubling of the current number, seen on an exponential scale.

That is, three billion doubling to six billion [near the current world population], six billion doubling to twelve billion [projected population in about another fifty years or so], twelve billion doubling to twenty-four billion [projected population in some 100 years or so], etc.

Of course, the time for this to occur on the projection does not exist. We are too near the end of the Man’s Day. It has been given only to illustrate what has been occurring with the world’s population in this exponential manner over the past 100 or so years and why the world is increasingly finding itself with more and more problems, which will be brought to a head during the coming Tribulation.)

Agriculture, along with a number of different things related to agriculture, could only top the list of problems which man is faced with today. And, as previously stated, agriculture, over the years, has not kept pace with the population increase. And other major problems exist which are either directly or indirectly related to agriculture.

For example, supplies of fresh water and quality soil — vitally necessary for agriculture — are both being depleted and/or polluted. Then there are the natural resources which are being depleted, some vitally necessary for the support of even human life itself. And the list could go on and on and on.

For years, water has been pumped from underground reservoirs much, much faster than it has been replenished (e.g., water for farmland use pumped by thousands of wells from the Ogallala Aquifer lying beneath the surface of western Texas, western Kansas, and much of Nebraska forms one such usage), and wells are continually having to be dug deeper and deeper as the water levels continue to drop lower and lower (about 80 percent of water usage worldwide today is for agriculture alone).

And it is evident that water usage after this fashion can’t continue indefinitely. Matters are already far beyond the point of no return; and though major changes are being worked on, proposed, and even worked out in some instances, the inevitable can only occur with the passing of time — an increasing non-availability of fresh water for crops which the world has to have, resulting in an increasing non-availability of food, resulting in increasing unheard-of prices for the food that will be available, resulting in an increasing famine on a level heretofore unseen in the world.

Then, along with the preceding, there will be pestilences (plagues and diseases), along with the pollution of existing land and water. And, in the light of things occurring in the world today, it would take little imagination to see how numerous things already in place could very well lead into the first part of the Tribulation and then escalate, accompanying the corresponding famine, during the latter part of the Tribulation.

Super-strains of viruses have already appeared, some which cannot be controlled, due in no small part to the abuse of drugs to control diseases throughout past decades. Then there are current diseases such as AIDS, Ebola, etc.

When this is all put together, one has a very similar picture, if not an exact picture, of escalated conditions during the Tribulation, particularly during the latter part of this seven-year period. Whether or not present conditions as previously described will play major roles in how conditions will evolve and become during the Tribulation can, of course, not be stated for certain.

The matter has been presented in this manner only to show that the world is quite ripe for that which Scripture states is about to occur. That is to say, as previously seen, conditions which could very well result in prophesied future conditions are currently in place.

Then, something else needs to be considered. Time is fast running out. As previously stated, we are almost at the end of Man’s Day. We are almost at that time when these prophesied events can only begin occurring.

How Bad Will It Really Get?

During that future time, with famine (among other connected or related things) escalating and running rampant, exactly how bad will conditions get? The answer to that question, from a Biblical standpoint, is very simple:

God is going to allow conditions in that coming day — “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7ff) — to get AS BAD AS IT TAKES to bring the Jewish people to the place of repentance.

That which happened in Europe during the reign of the Third Reich — the extreme persecution of the Jews throughout Europe and the extermination of 6,000,000 in the death camps — wasn’t enough to effect the nation’s repentance. What will it take to bring about their repentance? What will it take to bring this nation to the place where they will call upon the God of their fathers?

It will take EXACTLY the things which the Word reveals are about to occur in the world — NOTHING LESS!

And THAT’S HOW BAD CONDITIONS ARE GOING TO GET, with the nations of the earth caught up in this right along with Israel.

During the Tribulation, particularly during the last half, two-thirds of the Jewish population of the earth will die (die because of hunger or accompanying plagues or diseases, or be slain at the hands of the Beast and those who do his bidding).

There are statements pertaining to all of this in a number of prophecies, but in two books, the two-thirds number is given; and in one book a division of the two-thirds is given, showing part dying because of famine and pestilences and the other part dying, either directly or indirectly, at the hands of the Beast.

Note the passage usually quoted pertaining to the two-thirds being slain, from Zechariah:

“And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.

And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: And they shall say, The Lord is my God” (Zechariah 13:8-9).

Then note what Ezekiel has to say about the same matter, providing additional information:

“Thus saith the Lord God; This is Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are round about her.

And she has changed my judgments into wickedness more than the nations, and my statutes more than the countries that are round about her: for they have refused my judgments and my statutes, they have not walked in them.

Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Because ye multiplied more than the nations that are round about you, and have not walked in my statutes, neither have kept my judgments, neither have done according to the judgments of the nations that are round about you;

Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I, even I, am against thee, and will execute judgments in the midst of thee in the sight of the nations.

And I will do in thee that which I have not done, and whereunto I will not do any more the like, because of thine abominations [a statement which can place this during only one time — during the future Tribulation].

Therefore the fathers shall eat the sons in the midst of thee, and the sons shall eat their fathers; and I will execute judgments in thee, and the whole remnant of thee will I scatter into all the winds.

Wherefore, as I live, saith the Lord God; Surely, because thou hast defiled my sanctuary with all thy detestable things, and with all thine abominations, therefore will I diminish thee; neither shall thine eye spare, neither will I have any pity.

A third part of thee shall die with the pestilence, and with the famine shall they be consumed in the midst of thee: and a third part shall fall by the sword round about thee; and I will scatter a third part into all the winds, and I will draw out a sword after them.

Thus shall mine anger be accomplished, and I will cause my fury to rest upon them, and I will be comforted: and they shall know that I the Lord have spoken it in my zeal, when I have accomplished my fury in them” (Ezekiel 5:5-13).

Note how bad things will become for the Jewish people, solely because of the famine and accompanying pestilence. And this could only exist among the nations as well, though not to the extent as it will be seen among the Jewish people.

The Gentiles will have access to at least some food, but this will not be the case with Israel. Conditions in the world for the Jewish people during the last half of the Tribulation will become far, far worse than conditions became for them in Nazi Germany and much of the remainder of Europe immediately preceding and during WWII.

The Jewish people during this time will not be able to purchase food; nor will they be able to barter or sell their goods (Revelation 13:16-17), with perhaps food in view.

This is the “why” of that stated in Matthew 25:31-46 — which has to do with the Gentiles’ treatment of the Jewish people during the Tribulation and that which will result when Christ returns and deals with these Gentiles on that basis.

Saved Gentiles at the end of the Tribulation will be judged on one basis alone, with a position in the kingdom in view. They will be judged solely on the basis of their treatment of the Jewish people during the Tribulation, which can only be in the realm of helping or not helping them in different fashions — providing or not providing food, shelter, necessities of life, etc.

This is also the “why” of that stated in verse ten of the previously quoted section of Scripture from Ezekiel chapter five (Ezekiel 5:10). As seen in this verse, food will be so scarce in the camp of Israel in that coming day that cannibalism will exist. Matters in this respect , as clearly stated in Scripture, will be brought to the place that even those in a family will slay and eat other members of that family.

Inconceivable, Impossible? Hardly! Not only has this happened in history but Scripture clearly states that it will happen again — on a much broader scale — during a time in the immediate future when conditions will become so severe (famine, among other things) that, apart from the Lord’s intervention, the human race could not survive those days (Matthew 24:22).

But Israel brought to the place of repentance through this persecution will effect the Lord’s intervention once again in man’s affairs.

During Elijah and Elisha’s day, conditions surrounding famine became so severe that an ass’ head and dove’s dung were sold for pieces of silver; and, as well, there is an account of a mother killing and boiling her own son for food (II Kings 6:24-31).

And the Tribulation and time immediately following will, so to speak, be Elijah’s day again, when he appears, with Moses, here on earth in the land of Israel during the first half of the Tribulation, and then accompany Christ to the earth at the time of His return following the Tribulation. And famine, of a similar type seen during his day in history will be seen again during his day yet future (cf. Leviticus 26:29; Deuteronomy 28:53-57).

Then the preceding is just part of a much larger picture. The death of two-thirds of the world’s Jewish population would be little more than about 9,000,000 as the Jewish population of the earth presently stands. But what about the billions comprising the remainder of the earth’s population? At least one-fourth of these individuals are going to die during or immediately following this time as well (cf. Revelation 6:8-10; 7:9, 13-14; 9:18; 11:13; 13:7).

Why? How? Hunger, plagues, diseases would address part of the matter; judgments during the Tribulation would address other parts; mandatory Beast worship, taking his mark would address more…

And, as seen, many going through this time will not make it all the way through. Only the ones enduring until the end will be delivered out of this time (Matthew 24:13).

Inconceivable conditions will exist in that day (famine, plagues, diseases, cannibalism); the government of the earth will be of an inconceivable form (things seen in ISIS and/or Al-Qaeda today could be no more than a forerunner or prelude to something far worse existing in that day); and the resulting carnage which will follow (consisting of over a billion people), as well, can only be looked upon in an inconceivable fashion.

As previously seen, in the Book of Genesis, during Joseph’s day while in Egypt, there were seven years of plenty which were followed by seven years of famine. And the years of famine became so severe that the preceding years of plenty were not even remembered (Genesis 41:29-31, 53-54).

And the preceding — a type of that about to occur, showing two complete periods of time by the two sevens of years — relates exactly how conditions presently exist in that which “Egypt” typifies, in the world (during the time of plenty), and how conditions will shortly become in the world (during the time of famine).

We’re living during the time of plenty, but this time is about to end, with the time of famine to follow. And the latter, in complete keeping with the type, will be so severe that the former will not even be remembered.

You don’t want to be here (a time which can’t possibly be very far away)!

If saved, you won’t be here. You will have been removed into the heavens, with ensuing events occurring there (the judgment seat of Christ and things beyond).

But, if unsaved at the time when the Church is removed, you will be here, with ensuing events as well (events as previously described).

Then, One Other Thing to Consider

As previously stated, the Church (all Christians — the living at that time, and the dead from throughout the dispensation, resurrected) will be removed from the earth into the heavens preceding the Tribulation; and Israel, along with the Gentile nations (billions of people, evidently from the times in which we live, people alive today), are going to go through this time of unparalleled trouble, suffering, death…

But think for a moment about the scene in the world once all Christians have been removed. In most countries, it will make little to no difference (e.g., Moslem countries, or countries with only a sprinkling of Christians). But note a country such as the United States, where millions of Christians can be found working and heavily engaged in almost every conceivable type job. What’s going to happen when the individuals holding all of these jobs, without any advance warning, are suddenly no longer here?

How long will the power stay up, the water keep running, the gasoline pumps keep working, the grocery stores remain open — and the list could go on and on — when key individuals in all these jobs are suddenly no longer here to provide service and help? Only one thing could possibly exist in much of the country, particularly in large cities, for at least a time — Mass Chaos!

And how will this possibly play into aiding or helping bring matters to pass in order to correspond with the manner Scripture describes these things existing in the world during this future time?

Of course, we can’t know the answers to these questions, but the sudden removal of millions of people could conceivably have a major part in the changes of existing conditions in this country. This is perhaps something to consider, along with that which Scripture reveals concerning conditions during those days which are almost upon us.
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Word Document:  The World Today, in That Coming Day by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - The World Today, in That Coming Day by Arlen Chitwood.pdf. which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

Ref. Lamp Broadcast - The World Today, That Coming Day by Arlen Chitwood, Part I and Part II for additional commentary on the subject at hand, in pamphlet form.

To website CONTENTS Page.
God Honors His Word
God ALWAYS Does EXACTLY What He Has Stated
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times” (Psalm 12:6).

“To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).

God’s Word and God honoring His Word is, in one respect, compared in Scripture to a “twoedged sword,” cutting both ways, with no middle ground. But Scripture, in this comparison, moves a step beyond, stating that God’s Word is “sharper than any twoedged sword” (cf. Matthew 12:30; Hebrews 4:12).

To provide an example of the preceding, which is rather straight forward, for it is simply what Scripture states (as anyplace else in Scripture that could be dealt with), note Genesis 12:3a:

“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee…”

This, of course, has reference to the Gentiles’ treatment (or Christians today, as well) of the seed of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob. There are blessings on the one hand and curses on the other. God honors His Word, compared to but “sharper than any twoedged sword,” cutting both ways, with no middle ground. It is one or the other, either blessings or curses.

And, to see an illustration of this principle, note the judgment of the Gentiles in Matthew 25:31-46 at the time of Christ’s return, following the Tribulation. Judgment in these verses is based on one thing alone — these Gentiles’ treatment of “Christ’s brethren” during the Tribulation, which could only be a reference to their treatment of the Jewish people during this time.

Then, with God (there in the person of His Son) inseparably associated with anything and everything which happens to the Jewish people — experiencing these things Himself, right along with His people, all blessings as well as all curses (Isaiah 63:8-9) — again, those being judged are dealt with on one basis alone. They are dealt with on the basis of that which God had previously stated in His unchangeable word 3,500 years earlier, in Genesis 12:3.

(Note that the end result of the judgment in Matthew 25:31-46 has to do with entrance into or exclusion from the kingdom, NOT with eternal life or eternal damnation, as so many attempt to read into the passage [v. 34, with v. 41 antithetical to v. 34].

To say that the two groups show that they are either saved or unsaved by their actions [an interpretation almost universally held throughout Christendom] is not only reading something into the text which is not there but bringing works over into a realm where works CANNOT EXIST [Romans 11:6; Ephesians 2:8-9]. Through this means, not only is the passage made to teach something which it doesn’t teach at all but that which the passage does deal with is destroyed.

Most Christians seem to understand that a person can’t perform works to be saved or to stay saved. But few seem to understand that it is equally erroneous to see works used as a basis to show that a person has been saved. To remain within salvation by grace through faith, a person CANNOT do anything to be saved, stay saved, or show that he has been saved.)

But, note something a little different, which some might consider another way of viewing God honoring His Word, though it is not another way at all. Any way the matter is viewed it is still God doing exactly as He has stated, with both positive and negative ramifications, with no middle ground, exactly as seen back in Genesis 12:3.

Some Christians though don’t seem to want to view this Word after the same unchangeable manner when dealing with certain other related subjects. And, in connection with this, as seen in the manner that many handle Matthew 25:31-46, they also often find themselves forced to take similar liberties with the Word elsewhere, for the plain reading of the text can take them into areas which they don’t understand.

And to deal with the matter, attention will be called to different promises and warnings which God gave to the Jewish people through Moses and the Prophets, with everything regarding the outworking of these promises and warnings kept in modern times (past, present, and future).

Past — the Holocaust and Afterwards

As horrific as Jewish persecution preceding and during the WWII years was — merging into what is today called, “the Holocaust,” resulting in the death of some 6,000,000 Jews in Europe at the hands of the Third Reich — this persecution can easily be explained and understood in the light of God’s Word. And, in fact, this Word is THE ONLY THING which will explain the matter.

That which occurred during those years can be explained from one standpoint alone, in a very simple manner: God again honored His Word!

God, through Moses, 3,500 years ago called the Jewish people out of Egypt, made a covenant with them, and established them in the land previously covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, within a theocracy (Exodus 12:1ff). And within this theocracy, in the land, they were to be the channel through which spiritual and material blessings would flow out to all the Gentile nations of the earth (Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 43:1-10).

Then, relative to this covenant, God clearly stated, in no uncertain terms, what HE WOULD DO in two instances.

God explained what HE WOULD DO if the Jewish people obeyed His covenant; and, on the other hand, God also explained what HE WOULD DO if the Jewish people disobeyed His covenant (Leviticus 26:1ff; Deuteronomy 28:1ff).

On the ONE hand, blessings would ensue. God would place the Jewish people above all nations, dwelling in a land flowing with milk and honey, with the nations being blessed through Israel.

On the OTHER hand, exactly the opposite would occur. The Jewish people would be removed from their land, driven out among the nations, placed at the tail of the nations, with resultant curses having to do with both the Jewish people and their land.

And, as the Biblical account continues, the Jewish people are seen numerous times disobeying the terms of the covenant. And, as the Biblical account continues further, God, true to His Word, eventually drove His people from their land out among the nations. And as the Biblical account continues even further, persecution at the hands of the Gentiles, quite extreme at times, resulted (e.g., Daniel 3:19ff; Esther 3:8ff).

But throughout all of this, extending into modern times, the Jewish people have had a God-given promise. If they would repent, turn from their wicked ways, and seek the Lord’s face, He would forgive their sins and restore them to a healed land (Leviticus 26:40-42; II Chronicles 7:12-14; Psalm 66:16-20; Jeremiah 11:10-11).

As seen time after time in the Book of Judges, God used/continues to use the Gentile nations as His chastising instrument to bring His wayward son (Exodus 4:22-23) to the place of repentance, obedience. And this chastisement, as He stated in Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 28, could be/has become quite severe at times.

And this is THE ONLY THING which will explain why God allowed the Holocaust to occur — carried to the extremes seen, by one of the most civilized nations on earth, Lutheran Germany — with no outside interference from the Allies who knew what was happening (no diverting parts of the war effort to curtail the persecution), resulting in no let-up in the persecution until the Third Reich was no longer able to continue afflicting God’s son.

In His omniscient control of all things, God evidently prevented the Allied forces from interfering with His plans and purposes as they pertained to His dealings with His people. In short, God simply honored His Word, preventing outside interference!

Beyond that, note that God suffered right along with His people — “In ALL their affliction he was afflicted…” (Isaiah 63:9a). As in the person of His Son, dying at Calvary, God has gone to similar extremes with His son, Israel, for related reasons (cf. John 4:22).

Present — The Jewish People Today

At the end of WWII, Jewish life throughout Europe was in complete disarray. Over half of Europe’s Jewish population had been slain, no one seemed to know who was still alive, who wasn’t; and their property was gone or lay in ruins, along with numerous parts of Europe, particularly Germany. They were literally a wandering people without a place to go.

Thus, it is little wonder that the attention of European Jewry — a people arising like a phoenix out of the ashes of the Holocaust — found itself directed toward one place, toward the land in the Middle East covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob millenniums before. They found themselves caught up in a renewed Zionistic movement begun fifty years earlier under Theodor Herzl.

But, in God’s eyes, a major, multifaceted problem could only confront the Jewish people:

The Holocaust had not effected repentance, the “house” (a reference to the Jewish people, Jerusalem, and the land) still lay “desolate” (Matthew 23:37-39), and the Jewish people were attempting to re-enter a house which had been left “empty, swept, and garnished” (put in order relative to its desolate state [Matthew 12:43-45]).

In short, God COULD NOT, at this time, regather the Jewish people to their land in accord with His numerous promises to do so and, at the same time, remain true to His Word.

And, if the Jewish people took it upon themselves to do that which God could not presently do and honor His Word — seek to emancipate themselves in their present condition, apart from their Messiah, and re-enter this house left “empty, swept, and garnished” — they could only accomplish ONE THING. They could only guarantee that God would honor His Word in another respect.

They could only guarantee that another Holocaust, FAR, FAR WORSE than the last would overtake them. And, according to Matthew 12:43-45, because of what they had done, this Holocaust would be intensified SEVEN TIMES.

Future — the Holocaust and Afterwards

As horrific as Jewish persecution under the coming man of sin will be — with the Jewish people finding themselves in a FAR WORSE Holocaust, resulting in the death of some 9,000,000 Jews this time (by today’s count [two-thirds of world Jewry will perish]) — again, this can easily be explained and understood in the light of God’s Word, with this Word, again, being THE ONLY THING which will explain the “why” of that which is about to occur, which can only be in the immediate future.

And God may very well have used the WWII Holocaust in such a manner so as to prepare His people for this future Holocaust, which could explain the severity, along with the Allied non-interference with God’s action — remaining true to His Word pertaining to what He would do concerning covenantal disobedience.

Thus, that which will occur during those future years can be explained exactly the same and only way that the past Holocaust can be explained, from ONE STANDPOINT ALONE, in a very simple manner: God has honored and will honor His Word!

The next Holocaust, described in Scripture as “the time of Jacob’s trouble,” will encompass not just Europe but will extend worldwide (Jeremiah 30:7).

The Jews presently in the land — all 6,000,000 — will be uprooted from their land in the middle of this time, in the middle of the Tribulation. A tenth will be killed, the remainder will be sold as slaves to the Gentiles or driven back out among the nations, and their cities and land will be destroyed (cf. Leviticus 26:31-33; Isaiah 6:11-13; Daniel 9:26; Joel 3:1-8; Matthew 24:15ff; Luke 21:20ff; Revelation 12:6, 14).

And there, out among the nations with the remainder of world Jewry, God will deal with ALL of the Jews together, with conditions so severe that two-thirds of them will die — through starvation, plagues, the sword (Leviticus 26:27-29; Ezekiel 5:5-13; Matthew 24:7). But this time, unlike in the past Holocaust, Israel will be brought to the place of repentance.

Then, following ensuing events (Israel’s national salvation, restoration to a healed land, Gentile world power destroyed), the Messianic Era will be ushered in, for GOD HONORS HIS WORD!
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Word Document:  God Honors His Word by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

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To website CONTENTS Page.
The Church — Then & Today
2,000 Years of Church History — What Happened?
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

During the early years of the Church, attention was focused on an inheritance in a heavenly land to which Christians had been called. This was the central message proclaimed throughout Christendom during that time.

But today, attention in Christendom — all Christendom, so-called fundamental and liberal circles alike — is centered elsewhere; and the true message concerning a heavenly inheritance awaiting Christians is seldom, if ever, heard.

So what brought about the change from the way things were to the way things presently exist? Scripture reveals exactly what happened.

The Way Things Were

The Bible is a book dealing with redemption. But the Biblical scope of redemption doesn’t stop with man passing “from death unto life” (John 5:24). Rather, it goes on to also include “that which is really life [literal translation]” (I Timothy 6:19). The former has to do with the gospel of the grace of God, and the latter has to do with the gospel of the glory of Christ. And Scripture, as a whole, concerns itself far more with the latter than with the former, for Scripture has been written to the saved, not to the unsaved (I Corinthians 2:9-14).

Scripture begins this way (the framework set forth in the six and seven days in Genesis chapters one and two [ref. the author’s book, The Study of Scripture BOOK, Chs. 2-4, in this site]), necessitating that Scripture remain this way (which it does). It is man who has turned the matter around and has not only placed the emphasis at a point where Scripture does not place it but has also either minimized or completely done away with teachings surrounding the point where Scripture does place the emphasis.

Note, for example, Paul’s dealings with the Church in Ephesus. He spent three years teaching them. But what did he teach them? That’s revealed in Acts 20:17-38 when Paul called the elders of this Church together for the last time that he would be with them.

Paul, referring to that which he had previously taught them, began with “the gospel of the grace of God” (v. 24). But he didn’t remain there. He then referred to his prior proclamation of “the kingdom of God” (v. 25). And both of these together constituted “all the counsel of God” (v. 27).

God purchased the Church (with the use of “Church” viewed in a complete sense, as in Matthew 16:18) “with his own blood,” and the elders in Ephesus were exhorted by Paul to “feed” those in the Church over which they had been placed (v. 28).

(There are manuscript variances in Acts 20:28 relative to whether Theos [God], Kurios [Lord], or both words together [both Theos and Kurios] should appear in the text — i.e., God’s blood, the Lord’s blood [referring to Christ], or the blood of both the Father and His Son.

There is manuscript evidence for each of the three renderings, though most grammarians and translators, who study these things, usually see more evidence for the use of Theos [God] alone, with the translation as it appears in the KJV [also in the NASB and NIV]. In the final analysis though it would really be immaterial which of the three manuscript variances was followed, for the Son is God manifested in the flesh.

The time that the paschal lambs were being slain throughout the camp of Israel on the 14th day of the first month of the year in 33 A.D., “in the evening [lit., ‘between the evenings,’ understood to be between 3 and 6 P.M. (Exodus 12:6)] was the time when the Paschal Lamb was slain. This was the time when God died. This was the time when God purchased the Church with His Own blood.)

And the elders, called to feed Christians in the Church, which had been purchased by the very blood of God would, of necessity, have to move beyond teachings surrounding the simple gospel of the grace of God. Contextually, in this passage, it would have to involve things surrounding “the kingdom of God.”

And, in conjunction with that, contextually, it would involve commending them to God and to His Word — that which could build them up in “the faith” so they might one day realize the inheritance to which they had been called (Acts 20:32).

Paul, in Acts 20:17ff, exhibited exactly the same qualities which Peter exhibited in his second epistle. Paul had previously spent three years teaching the Christians at Ephesus, and that which he taught them centered around the Word of the Kingdom. Then, when he called the elders of this Church together for his last time with them, he still called their attention to teachings surrounding the Word of the Kingdom, though these were things that he had spent three previous years teaching them. This is how important he considered this overall teaching to be.

And Peter, writing his second epistle and calling attention to this same message, stated that he was going to always keep these things before the Christians to whom he wrote, though they had previously been taught these things and were established in these truths. As long as he remained alive he was going to stir them up by calling these things to their attention (II Peter 1:12-18; 3:1-2; cf. II Peter 1:1-11).

Many Christians in the Church today would look upon anyone proclaiming the message surrounding Christ’s return after this fashion as “fanatical,” or as someone who has “gone to seed on Christ’s return.” But that’s not the way Scripture presents the matter at all.

This was the central message Paul (et al.) proclaimed, and this was the way that the Holy Spirit moved him to structure his epistles (et al. also; e.g., Hebrews-Jude have been structured this same way). Accordingly, this was a message not only constantly proclaimed but well known and understood throughout Christendom during Paul’s day (Colossians 1:5-6, 23-28).

Note, for example, the Book of Ephesians: As elsewhere throughout the Word of God, there are references in the epistle to the gospel of the grace of God (e.g., Ephesians 2:8-9), but almost the entire epistle concerns itself with things surrounding the gospel of the glory of Christ. The epistle concerns itself, in the main, with that which is stated in Ephesians 2:10, giving the purpose for man’s salvation (vv. 8, 9).

This is what the inheritance in chapter one has to do with; this is what the mystery revealed to Paul in chapter three has to do with; and the epistle ends with details concerning the present warfare against those in the land of our inheritance and how we are to array ourselves for the battle at hand. And between these points, in other parts of the epistle, one will find the same central teaching.

And, in this respect, it’s interesting that the Church in Ephesus appears first among the seven Churches in Revelation chapters two and three. The Church in Ephesus sets forth an example of the way that the Church existed at the beginning of the dispensation (knowledgeable about the present spiritual warfare, the Christians’ future inheritance, etc.).

But then things began to happen, as seen even in the Church in Ephesus, which left its “first love” (Revelation 2:4).

Then, the Church appears at the end of the dispensation in a completely different setting, a condition resulting from the Church initially leaving its “first love,” seen in the seventh and last of the Churches in Revelation chapters two and three, the Church in Laodicea — described as “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked” (Revelation 3:14-21).

That Which Happened

So, What happened? A woman placed leaven in the three measures of meal. That’s what happened. And Christ stated that the leaven would do its damaging work, “till the whole was leavened” (Matthew 13:33).

This depicts a work by Satan very early in the dispensation. The approximate time when this was done can be known through observing that even during the first few decades of the existence of the Church things were beginning to go awry. The Church in Ephesus had left its “first love” (Revelation 2:4), and false prophets (Christian teachers, elders, proclaiming a message contrary to the Word of the Kingdom — apostates) were beginning to appear in the Churches (II Peter, Jude).

This all occurred within the first forty years of the Church’s existence, and the leaven took the Church down over the next several centuries until the message surrounding the Word of the Kingdom had all but disappeared. By the fourth century A.D., during the days of the Roman Emperors Constantine the Great and Theodosius I, the Church had so completely lost its true focus that the unthinkable eventually happened. The Church merged with the State.

In the year 380 A.D., Theodosius I issued an edict that made Christianity the exclusive state religion; and by the year 395 A.D., Christianity had become recognized as the official and only religion of the Roman Empire — something which could not have occurred apart from almost three centuries of the working of the leaven from within.

The Church, called to inherit in another land (a heavenly), had settled down in the land (an earthly) from which it had been called; the Church, called to rule and reign in a future kingdom (under Christ), had merged with the powers in the present kingdom (under Satan).

A 1,000-year period of darkness then engulfed the Church, awaiting the Reformation under Martin Luther, along with succeeding events.

(For additional information on the preceding, refer to the author’s book, in this site,  Mysteries of the Kingdom BOOKChs. 5 and 6, “Parable of the Mustard Seed” and “Parable of the Leaven.”)

The Reformation itself though had nothing to do with a restoration of truths surrounding the gospel of the glory of Christ. The reformers were concerned centrally with the simple gospel of the grace of God. It was only in later years that men began to look beyond the simple message of salvation by grace through faith — beyond that set forth in Genesis 1:2-5 to that set forth in Genesis 1:6-2:3.

But even then there was no restoration of these truths. There was only a bringing of them to light again, with one Christian here and one Christian there understanding and receiving the truth of the matter.

The leaven had centered its attack at this point, it had done its damaging work, and the only thing which remained was for the leaven to complete its work.

And this is why, when the Son of Man returns for His Church, He will not find “the faith” being proclaimed by elders in the Churches of the land. The whole will have been leavened. Those in the Churches will be talking about everything but the central message of Scripture. And the dispensation will end with the Church — the complete Church — in the condition depicted by the Church in Laodicea.

The Way Things Are

We’re in the final days of a dispensation in which the leaven has been working for almost two millenniums. The Church at the end of the dispensation is to be completely permeated by the leaven, and this has particular reference to the message surrounding the Word of the Kingdom. This is the message Christ will not find being proclaimed in the Churches at the time of His return.

And, if a person wants to see exactly where we are in relation to that day through the working of the leaven alone, all he has to do is go into practically any Church of the land and listen to the message being proclaimed from the pulpit. He will listen in vain for any mention of that which is not only the central message which Scripture directs to the saved but also the central message which was proclaimed and understood throughout Christendom during the early years of the Church — namely that Christians have been purchased by the blood of God for a purpose, to be realized during the Messianic Era, then during the ages beyond.

Will conditions in Christendom improve? Can matters be turned around?

What does Scripture say? Scripture is not only the sole Word on the subject but the final Word as well. Scripture states that “the whole” will be leavened; and Scripture further states that, as a result, the Son of Man is not going to find “the faith” on the earth at the time of His return (Matthew 13:33; Luke 18:8).

So don’t look for an end-time revival. It’s not coming! Scripture foretells total apostasy within the Church instead (the complete Church standing completely away from “the faith”).

Thus, matters can only get worse.
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Word Document:  The Church — Then & Today by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

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To website CONTENTS Page.
O.T. Subject & Structure
The End Opened Up and Revealed from the Beginning
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

The Old Testament can be divided into three major sections — Genesis through Esther (historic), Job through the Song of Solomon (personal and experiential), and Isaiah through Malachi (prophetic).

Insofar as the historical nature (and much of the typical nature) of that seen throughout the first part of these three major sections is concerned, Esther — having to do with Israel — outlines, in a typical fashion, that seen throughout the whole of this first section of Scripture (Genesis 11 [b] ff).

Thus, in this respect, the Book of Esther simply presents a brief summary of all which has preceded surrounding Israel, with the emphasis placed in the same realm seen in the preceding Scriptures which the book outlines — on the latter days, leading into the Messianic Era. And the Book of Esther coming at the end of the first of these three major sections would be the proper place for this book in the Canon of Scripture.

This first major section of Scripture (Genesis through Esther) is often thought of only in the sense of providing Biblical history, along with spiritual lessons drawn from Biblical history. However, viewing this section of Scripture from this perspective alone only presents part of the picture. This section, through mainly its type-antitype structure, is highly prophetic in nature. In fact, from a typical perspective, this first section is just as prophetic in nature as the third section — from Isaiah through Malachi, containing the major and minor prophets (major and minor in the sense of length, not importance).

Also, though this first section centers around Israel and the nations from a historical perspective, typology throughout this section is another matter. The typical structure and prophetic nature of this section of Scripture, a section covering about one-half of the entire Old Testament, is somewhat divided between God and Israel and Christ and the Church.

For example, viewing two parts of Genesis (Genesis 2-4 and Genesis 23-25), chapters two and three have to do with Christ and the Church, and chapter four has to do with God and Israel; then chapter twenty-three has to do with God and Israel, chapter twenty-four has to do with Christ and the Church, and chapter twenty-five has to do with God and Israel once again.

Both aspects of these typical teachings can be seen in the lives of Joseph in the latter part of Genesis (Genesis 37-45) and Moses in the first part of Exodus (Exodus 2-4). Both Joseph and Moses took Gentile brides during a time after they had been rejected by and separated from their brethren (having to do with Christ and the Church, following Christ’s rejection by and separation from Israel, His brethren according to the flesh); but the time came when both Joseph and Moses dealt with their brethren again (having to do with Christ and Israel, with that time when God resumes His national dealings with Israel).

Then, whole books deal with matters in this typical manner. Most of the Book of Exodus deals with God and Israel in this respect, and the Books of I, II Samuel deal with Christ and the Church in this same respect. Then, the same thing can be seen in the Books of Ruth and Esther. The Book of Ruth deals with Christ and the Church, while the Book of Esther deals with God and Israel.

And, viewing matters from a different perspective yet, note that the journey of the Israelites under Moses and Joshua typifies the journey of Christians under Christ today. An earthly land lay before one in the type, and a heavenly land lies before the other in the antitype.

This type-antitype structure is that which is referenced through the use of the word tupos (type) in the Greek text of I Corinthians 10:6, 11; this is the basis upon which particularly the second, third, fourth, and fifth of the five major warnings in Hebrews are to be understood (Hebrews 3-12); and this forms the basis for a proper understanding of the entire pilgrim walk of the Christian today (a journey from Egypt [a type of the world] to Canaan [a type of that heavenly land, connected with an inheritance and a rest, awaiting Christians]).

Or, going back to God and Israel, these same experiences of the Israelites under Moses foreshadow, as well, the future restoration of the Jewish people to the land under Christ.

Thus, saying that this first major section of Scripture is historic in nature, apart from being prophetic, would be far from correct. Within its typical structure, this section of Scripture is highly propheticas prophetic as any section of subsequent Scripture. And not only are numerous prophecies seen in the types extending from Genesis through Esther but also in places such as Balaam’s prophecies (Numbers 22-24), or that seen in God’s promises and warnings to Israel in Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 28 as well.

This section of Scripture provides a detailed history of Israel, relating the reason why the nation was called into existence, what was expected of this nation, and the reason why the Jewish people ultimately found themselves uprooted from their land and scattered among the Gentile nations.

Then, viewing the typical aspect of this section of Scripture, events move beyond history into prophecy, showing the end of the matter — the same thing seen in the Psalms and the Prophets.

This is the way in which God designed and structured this opening section of His Word. And if man would properly understand God’s revealed Word, he must recognize this fact and study this Word after the same fashion in which it has been given.

This opening section of Scripture, from Genesis through Esther, forms the backdrop for not only the second major section (a section covering five books, from Job through the Song of Solomon) but the third major section as well (all of the prophetic books, extending from Isaiah through Malachi). That would be to say, Genesis through Esther forms the backdrop for the remainder of the Old Testament. And if man does not understand (or if he ignores) that placed at the beginning, it will be impossible for him to ever come into a proper understanding of later revelation (including, of course, the New Testament as well), for the latter is inseparably tied to and built upon the former in this respect.

God’s revelation to man is progressive in the sense that it has been designed so that a proper understanding of later revelation rests on a proper understanding of earlier revelation. One part progresses into the other, and Scripture must be compared with Scripture — later revelation with earlier revelation, and earlier revelation with later revelation (I Corinthians 2:9-13; cf. Isaiah 28:10).

For example, in the second section, there are numerous Psalms covering not only Israel’s present condition (scattered among the Gentile nations) but also that which lies in the future for Israel (the end of Gentile world power, with Israel restored to her land and elevated to her proper place among the nations [e.g., Psalm 2; 8; 22-24; 37; 45-47; 76; 83; 89; 97; 102; 110; 121; 126; 137; 145]). And these Psalms cannot be properly understood apart from the backdrop provided by the first section of Scripture.

The fact that numerous Psalms cannot be properly understood apart from this first section should be easy enough to understand, for this first section of Scripture reveals the history of Israel, all the way from the reason for the nation’s calling as God’s firstborn son to the reason why God allowed the Gentile nations to come into the land and uproot His people.

Then, beyond that, the typical aspect of the first section enters into the matter, projecting events out into the future, as seen in the Psalms.

And all of the prophets present exactly the same central theme. It is that seen throughout the preceding Psalms, or the preceding historical books, viewing the latter from both historical and typical vantage points.

Each of the prophetic books (seventeen in all, as there are seventeen historic books) deals with different facets of the whole of Israel’s history, current condition, and future destiny, with a particular emphasis placed upon God’s punishment befalling His people because of disobedience, followed by the Jewish people’s repentance, followed by the destruction of Gentile world power, followed by God restoring Israel. These things comprise the overriding theme of all Old Testament prophecy as it pertains to Israel, whether in the historic books, the Psalms, or the Prophets.

Each of the prophetic books, beginning with Isaiah, covers, after some fashion, this panorama of Israeli history — events extending from the time of the nation’s inception almost three and one-half millenniums ago to the Messianic Kingdom yet future. But no two of these seventeen books cover exactly the same thing, after exactly the same fashion. Each book centers around a particular and peculiar facet of study within this panorama of events.

In this respect, studying these prophetic books is much like studying types. As no one type provides the complete picture in and of itself, no one Old Testament prophetic book provides the complete picture in and of itself as well.

Note, for example, how Gentile world power is dealt with in the Old Testament. Such power exists because of Israeli disobedience; and such power also exists to bring Israel, through persecution at the hands of the Gentiles, to the place of repentance.

Then, since the emphasis concerning Israel in this realm, in any part of the Old Testament, is upon Israel’s repentance and restoration, the emphasis concerning Gentile world power should, as well, be upon the end and destruction of Gentile world power, which it is. One parallels the other in Biblical prophecy, whether in Moses, the Psalms, or the Prophets.

Over and over in the Old Testament — beginning in Genesis — the end of Gentile world power comes into view. There is an emphasis placed in this realm, for Gentile world power must be brought to an end before Israel can occupy the nation’s proper place within a restored theocracy. This is why one finds the power of Egypt destroyed in the Red Sea at the time of the Exodus under Moses (Exodus 14:27-31); this is why one finds Haman slain in Esther prior to the Jewish people receiving their proper and due recognition (Esther 7:9-10; 8:15-17; 10:1-3); and this is why numerous Psalms and Prophets deal with this subject prior to Israel being restored (e.g., Psalm 2:1-5; Isaiah 24:21; Jeremiah 4:26-28; Ezekiel 39:21-22; Daniel 11:36-45; Joel 3:12-16).

Gentile world power is going to come to an end. And its end will be as depicted in Daniel 2:34-35, 44-45, among numerous other places in the Old Testament. Christ will return and personally destroy Gentile world power in its final form, headed up under Antichrist in that coming day. And once Gentile world power has been destroyed in this manner, Scripture pictures this destruction as “chaff” thrown into the wind from a threshing floor, being carried away by that wind, with Israel then elevated to the nation’s proper place among the Gentile nations of the earth, realizing the position occupied by firstborn sons (cf. Exodus 4:22-23).

“A threshing floor” is used in Scripture to depict judgment. This is true of God’s judgment upon Christians at the end of this dispensation (cf. Ruth 3:2ff; Matthew 3:11-12), and it is equally true of God’s judgment upon the Gentile nations at the end of the Tribulation (Daniel 2:35).

And to deny that these sequences of events will occur at the end of Man’s Day is to deny central themes of all Old Testament Scripture, as it pertains to the Church, Israel, and the nations. Much of that seen in Old Testament Scripture surrounding the Church, Israel, and the nations awaits fulfillment. And, in this respect, when God steps in and begins to fulfill these Scriptures, multiplied thousands upon thousands of prophecies seen throughout the pages of the Old Testament, beginning with the opening chapters of Genesis, will be fulfilled in a very short period of time.

God, through the writers of the Old Testament, has provided a voluminous amount of information on this overall subject; and there is no reason for anyone today to be uninformed or ignorant concerning that which God is about to do.

It has all been laid out in the Old Testament Scriptures, beginning with Moses and ending with the Prophets.
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Word Document:  O.T. Subject & Structure by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - O.T. Subject & Structure by Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
“Jacob” and “Israel”
“Jacob” During This Day “Israel” in That Day
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.

And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.

And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.

And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob.

And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.

And Jacob asked him, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there.

And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.

And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh” (Genesis 32:24-31).

(The text — Jacob wrestling with a Man [with God (cf. Genesis 32:25, 30)] throughout the night — foreshadows Israel wrestling with God throughout the dark night of the Tribulation.

Then, at the breaking of the day matters undergo a sharp change, with “Jacob” blessed, healed [spiritually healed, with the natural left weakened (cf. Genesis 32:25, 31)], and his name changed to “Israel.”

And EXACTLY the same thing will occur in the antitype. IT HAS TO, for the type has been set, and NO CHANGE can ever occur.

Jacob’s/Israel’s experiences yet future will occur EXACTLY like “Jacob’s/Israel’s experiences in the past. The antitype must follow the type IN EXACT DETAIL.)

The Type

Note that the coming Tribulation is referred to in Scripture as “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (the time of trouble for the fleshly man; Jeremiah 30:7), not “the time of Israel’s trouble” (which would be a time of trouble for the spiritual man, a prince with God).

“Jacob” HAS YET to become “Israel.”

JACOB, the natural man, will enter into and go through “the time of Jacob’s trouble”; but ISRAEL, the spiritual man, will emerge from this time and enter into the Messianic Era with the nation’s Messiah.

In that respect, the Jewish nation in the Middle East today has been misnamed. The nation, solely from a Biblical standpoint and the current status of the nation, should be called, “the Nation of Jacob,” the Nation of the Fleshly Man, NOT “the Nation of Israel,” the Nation of the Spiritual Man, a Prince with God.

This is clearly seen in the overall typology of Genesis 28-33. From Genesis 28:15 to Genesis 31:3 Jacob is in exile, with the heavens closed relative to God speaking to him, particularly relative to a return to his own land (Genesis 30:25-43). Then, after he has acquired all of Laban’s wealth, the heavens reopen, with God issuing the command for him to return to his own land (Genesis 31:1-3).

Continuing into the next chapter (Genesis 32), “Jacob” is seen wrestling with God, with his name subsequently being changed to “Israel.” Then in the next chapter (Genesis 33) “Israel,” no longer “Jacob,” meets Esau and finds that Esau is no longer his enemy.

The Antitype

Moving all of this over into the antitype, God’s dealings with Israel (actually, “Jacob”) during the coming Tribulation, then with “Israel” beyond the Tribulation, during the Messianic Era, are in view.

The heavens are presently closed relative to God’s dealings with “Jacob,” particularly relative to a return to the nation’s own land. And they will remain closed until the time seen in Genesis 31:3ff — until “Jacob” comes into possession of all the wealth of the Gentiles (Isaiah 60:1-12).

Then something else is seen in the next chapter, Genesis 32) — Jacob wrestling with God, with his name subsequently changed to “Israel,” picturing “Jacob” during the Tribulation wrestling with God, and God THEN changing “Jacob’s” name (the man of flesh) to “Israel” (a prince with God).

“Jacob” wrestled with God throughout the night, until the breaking of the day, as “Jacob” yet future will do during the long night of the Tribulation, until “the Sun of righteousness” arises “with healing in his wings” (Malachi 4:2).

Then…

Beyond that, in type or antitype, “Israel” ALONE is in view.

And the next chapter (Genesis 33) shows the resulting change which will then have occurred. Esau — now that “Jacob” was no longer “Jacob,” but “Israel” — was no longer his bitter enemy.

This foreshadows the Gentile nations’ attitude toward “Israel” yet future, AFTER “Jacob,” whom they had previously tried to slay (cf. Genesis 27:41), is no longer “Jacob,” but “Israel” (cf. Zechariah 8:20-23).

This is what lies in store for Israel and the Gentile nations. But FIRST, the long night of the Tribulation… THEN…

(Acquiring the wealth of the Gentiles, as seen in Genesis 30:25ff, is the same thing seen of the harlot woman in Revelation 17; 18; 19 [19a] [Revelation 18:9-21], FOLLOWING the harlot being burned with fire, FOLLOWING her harlotry being done away with [Revelation 17:11-17].
 
This account in the closing book of Scripture, in relation to the wealth of the Gentiles, is simply another picture of EXACTLY the same thing seen in the opening book of Scripture, in Genesis 30:25-31:3.

And the woman in Revelation 17; 18; 19 [19a] is CLEARLY and UNMISTAKABLY identified as “Jacob”/“Israel” — BEFORE and AFTER the harlot has been “burned with fire” [Revelation 17:18].

But, even apart from this clearly worded identification, that stated about the harlot and the very place which she occupies in the Book of Revelation — a mystery [necessitating an O.T. connection], associated with the Beast [the Beast does not appear in the O.T. apart from some type connection with this woman, whether seen as Jacob or Israel], and the only place in the Book of Revelation where “Jacob’s” harlotry is dealt with during the time of Jacob’s trouble — COULD ONLY CRY OUT for the same singular identification seen at the end of chapter seventeen.

If sound interpretation is thrown to the winds and this harlot woman is, resultingly, misidentified — which occurs FAR, FAR more often than not among Bible students — then that part of the Book of Revelation dealing with “the time of Jacob’s trouble” [Revelation 6-19] comes to a close through not only dealing quite extensively with SOMEONE [or, something] other than “Jacob” but through NEVER dealing with Jacob’s harlotry during this time.

[On an inseparably related subject, note something else seen concerning the harlot and the Beast in Revelation 17-19 [19a].

The harlot, at first, is seemingly at home in this man’s kingdom (Revelation 17:1-7); and, in the light of related Scripture, this situation can only exist because of the covenant that he will have made with her.

But, the day arrives when this man turns upon the harlot (Revelation 17:11-17; 18:1ff); and, in the light of related Scripture, this will occur when he breaks his covenant, which God will use to ultimately bring about the Jewish people’s repentance and bring an end to the nation’s harlotry.

And ONLY at this time will “Jacob” become “Israel” and be allowed to return to the nation’s land, in possession of the wealth of the Gentiles].

As well, another text concerning Israel acquiring the wealth of the Gentiles prior to the nation’s restoration to the land is seen in Ezekiel 38; 39 [Israel’s restoration is seen in Ezekiel 37 and referenced different times in chs. 38, 39 (Ezekiel 38:8, 11, 14; 39:25-28)]. These two chapters depict Gentile world powers coming against the Jewish people FOLLOWING that time when “Jacob” has not only become “Israel” but has been restored to his land, in possession of the wealth of the Gentiles.

And the text CLEARLY STATES that these things will occur “in that day,” NOT during the present day [Ezekiel 38:14, 19; 39:8, 11]. “That day” is an expression used over and over by the O.T. prophets to reference a future time associated with the Lord’s Day, following Man’s Day.

Note A CENTRAL REASON, in Ezekiel 38:12-13, WHY armies from the Gentile nations of the earth will come against Israel at this time — to recover what was at ONE TIME their wealth, NOW in Israel’s possession.

For information on Revelation 17-19 [19a], refer to the author’s book, Mystery of The Woman BOOK. For information on Ezekiel 38; 39, refer to Appendix III in the author’s book, O Sleeper! Arise, Call!.)
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Word Document:  “Jacob” and “Israel” by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form: Lamp Broadcast - “Jacob” and “Israel” by Arlen Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
“Thou Wicked Servant”
Future Words of the Lord to One of His Own
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

In both the parable of the talents and the parable of the pounds, the distinguishing difference in servitude, revealed in the Householder’s presence, in each instance, had to do with the servants’ proper use or improper use of the Master’s goods through trading and trafficking during the time of the Master’s absence.

In each parable, two servants were shown to have brought forth varying amounts of increase through a proper use of their Master’s goods, while another servant was shown to have brought forth no increase at all through a failure to use his Master’s goods.

The servant bringing forth no increase, in each parable, had stored his Master’s goods for safekeeping in a place where they could not be used. The servant in the parable of the talents had buried his Master’s goods in the ground (Matthew 25:25), and the servant in the parable of the pounds had placed his Master’s goods inside a napkin (Luke 19:20). And in each instance, no increase could be realized.

In each parable, the servant who had hidden his Master’s goods for safekeeping and had not used them was called into his Master’s presence to render an account. And that which was revealed, while in his Master’s presence, resulted in rebuke and loss.

His stewardship was supposed to have been the means through which he could have successfully run the race of the faith, allowing him to win a crown and be elevated into a regal position in the Householder’s kingdom at the time of His return. He, as a household steward in possession of a portion of the Householder’s goods, through faithfulness to his calling (his particular place of responsibility in the house), was being given an opportunity to bring forth an increase (bring forth fruit). This would allow him to win a crown, qualifying him to be elevated into the position of co-heir with his Master in the kingdom (which his Master had gone away to receive).

However, failure in his presently assigned stewardship would mean his future rejection as ruler. The unfaithful steward, at the time of his Master’s return, would be judged unfit to occupy a position with his Master in the kingdom, with chastisement following.

The Lord will not take lightly the matter of household servants, through unfaithfulness, spurning proffered positions as co-heirs with Him in the kingdom. Unfaithful servants will receive treatment of such a harsh nature at the hands of their Lord that many students of the Word turn completely away from the thought of saved individuals being in view. To them it is unthinkable that the Lord would extend treatment of this nature to redeemed individuals, His Own people.

This is the main reason that issues surrounding one’s eternal salvation or eternal damnation are often read into the parable of the talents and the parable of the pounds, with the unfaithful servants in both parables being looked upon as unsaved individuals.

However, the question concerning how the Lord could extend treatment of the nature revealed in these parables to one of His Own does not address the issue at all. The question asked within a proper Biblical framework would have to be just the opposite:

“How could the Lord be perfectly just and righteous without extending treatment of this nature to one of His Own?”

If faithfulness calls for commendation and reward (which it does), then unfaithfulness must call for rebuke and loss (which it does). The inverse of one must be true relative to the other, else the Lord’s perfect justice and righteousness could not be satisfied.

The Servants’ Plea

The unfaithful servants in both the parable of the talents and the parable of the pounds are seen pleading their individual cases before the Lord in frank, open, and unrestrained manners. Nothing appears to be held back as they relate the reasons for the different courses of action which they had taken while servants in the Master’s house in charge of a portion of the Master’s goods.

The appeal by the servants is not that of trying to hide or cover up that which had been done. To the contrary, it is just the opposite. They both appeal to their Lord, while in His presence, in an open, almost brazen manner, relating exactly what had occurred.

In that coming day, nothing will be held back. All things will be “naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do” (Hebrews 4:13). Christ spoke openly during His earthly ministry, saying nothing in secret (John 18:20); and He would expect the same from His servants, though the situation is often quite different today. However, the day is coming when nothing will remain hidden or be kept secret (Mark 4:22; Luke 8:17). Paul, in his message to those at Rome, stated:

“…God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel” (Romans 2:16).

(Paul proclaimed both the gospel of grace and the gospel of glory; but the reference in Romans 2:16 can pertain only to the gospel of glory, for no future judgment of the “secrets of men” awaits individuals in relation to the gospel of grace. Paul’s gospel in this passage [and elsewhere in the Pauline epistles where the expressions “my gospel” or “our gospel” appear] must be looked upon as the good news concerning the coming glory of Christ [“meat in due season”], to be proclaimed to stewards in the house [cf. Matthew 24:45; Romans 16:25; II Corinthians 4:3-4; Galatians 1:11-12; Ephesians 3:1-6; I Thessalonians 1:5; II Thessalonians 2:14; I Timothy 1:11; II Timothy 2:8].

This gospel deals with the message concerning present faithfulness of household servants, with a view to their occupying positions as co-heirs with Christ in the kingdom [e.g., note the context of II Timothy 2:8].)

The unfaithful servants in both the parable of the talents and the parable of the pounds accused their Lord of the same thing in order to justify their failure to use the goods entrusted to their care. They accused their Lord of reaping a harvest and deriving an increase through the labors of others, which was true, but viewed from a completely erroneous perspective (Matthew 25:24-27; Luke 19:21-23).

They looked upon the entire matter from a carnal, humanistic viewpoint, rejecting spiritual values. They envisioned their Lord doing these things only for self-gain, and they gave little or no thought to the revealed reason concerning why the Householder was conducting affairs in His house after this fashion (which they should have known, from the revealed Word).

The Householder had a relationship with His servants of this nature for a purpose involving far more than just self-gain, as supposed by the unfaithful servants. The Householder, for a particular reason, had delivered His goods to His servants and assigned them responsible positions in the house, with a view to their bringing forth an increase (bringing forth fruit).

Servitude during the present day of trials and testings would be the means through which the Householder could one day elevate His servants from positions in the house to positions in the kingdom. The Householder was allowing them, through faithfulness in lesser responsibility, to show that they were qualified to assume greater responsibility (cf. Matthew 25:29; Luke 16:10-12; 19:26); and upon the Householder’s reception of the kingdom and His return in possession of the kingdom, those servants having shown themselves qualified could be elevated from household servants of their Master to co-heirs with their Master.

The self-gain which the Householder would eventually realize was that of gaining co-heirs, gaining companions, to ascend the throne with Him in His kingdom. The work in the fields was to be accomplished by the household servants, using their Master’s possessions (using that belonging to the Master of the house); and the work was to be accomplished on the Master’s behalf.

The Householder, through this means, was extending to His servants the privilege of earning positions with Him in the kingdom, allowing them to one day be elevated to the highest place of honor and glory one could possibly receive (when Christ’s “greatest regal magnificence” [literal rendering of “majesty” in II Peter 1:16 from a superlative in the Greek text] will be manifested for all to behold). They would be recompensed for their labors by being elevated into positions as coheirs with the Householder in His kingdom. The fruits of their labors would not only benefit the Householder but the servants as well, with the Householder and His servants both realizing the results together.

The Lord’s Response

The thought of labor for the Lord during the present day in view of co-heirship with Him during that coming day is something which appears to have completely escaped the attention of the unfaithful servants in both parables. The unfaithful servants could not grasp at all that which their Master had in mind through requiring labor on His behalf.

Ignorance of His plans and purposes for both present and future times not only led them into gross error but it caused them to govern their activities as household servants after such a fashion that they mismanaged the Householder’s affairs, ultimately resulting in their being rejected for positions in the kingdom. There was no increase for their Master, resulting in no advancement for them.

The profitless servants in both parables had failed to properly conduct their affairs within the scope of delegated household responsibility. They had not used the talent/pound to bring forth an increase (Matthew 25:27; Luke 19:23 [“usury” in these verses is the translation of a Greek word meaning interest on money loaned or invested]).

The Lord’s sharp rebuke, followed by chastisement, was occasioned by the dual ramifications resulting from the servants’ disobedience. Appearing in the Lord’s presence as profitless servants meant:

1) No gain for the Lord.

2) Loss for the servants

Because of the servants’ failure, those portions of the Lord’s goods which had previously been entrusted to their care were taken from them and given to servants who had already been judged and had been shown to have brought forth increases. Such, as seen, would detract from the former and add to the latter. And the entirety of the matter is regal — relating to positions of rulership in the kingdom.

The principle governing this matter is set forth quite clearly in both parables:

“Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents.

For unto everyone that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath” (Matthew 25:28-29; cf. Luke 19:24-26).

(The faithful servant will have already been elevated into a position as co-heir with his Lord at this time, and an increase in the Lord’s goods, of the nature which this would produce, is shown in both parables to be directly related to increased responsibility in the kingdom.

But, that awaiting the servant bringing forth no increase, even that which he has shall be taken away [which, in view of that realized by the faithful servant through a reception of the unfaithful servant’s goods, can only refer to that which could have been his in the kingdom through having realized the purpose for his salvation and particular calling].)

Numerous positions in the kingdom which the Lord has gone away to receive must be filled upon His return. The failure of a servant to show himself qualified will not leave the position which could have been his unfilled. The Lord will simply assign that portion to another servant, adding to the responsibility which that servant will have already been accorded.

When all factors are considered, no other meaning can really be derived from the Lord’s action of taking from one servant and giving to another servant at the judgment seat.
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Word Document:  “Thou Wicked Servant” by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - “Thou Wicked Servant” by Arlen Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Daniel’s Seventy-Week Prophecy
A Key to All Prophetic Scripture
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Seventy weeks [‘Seventy sevens’] are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.

Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks [‘seven sevens’], and threescore and two weeks [‘threescore and two sevens’]: The street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.

And after threescore and two weeks [‘threescore and two sevens’] shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself [lit., ‘and shall have nothing’]: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined [lit., ‘and unto the end war and desolations are determined’].

And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week [‘one seven’]: and in the midst of the week [‘the seven’] he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate [lit., ‘upon the desolator’ (the one who confirms and then breaks the covenant, the Antichrist)]” (Daniel 9:24-27).

The word “week” or “weeks” in the prophecy is an English rendering of the Hebrew word, shabua, which is a septenary number and could be better rendered “seven” or “sevens.” Therefore, for the remainder of this study, this is the terminology which will be used.

The word Shabua is used two places in the Book of Daniel — in Daniel 9:24-27 and a couple of verses later in Daniel 10:2-3. The word itself does not designate the length of the seven. The length (days, years, etc.) must be determined from the text and/or context.

In chapter nine, the prophecy consisting of seventy sevens is an end result of Daniel’s prayer concerning Israel’s captivity in Babylon. Daniel had understood from Jeremiah’s prophecy that the captivity in Babylon would last seventy years (Daniel 9:2; cf. Jeremiah 25:11-12), he knew that this time was about up, and he had sought the Lord’s face through “prayer and supplication, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes.”

He had confessed over and over the sins of the people, which had resulted in their captivity (Daniel 9:3-19; cf. Leviticus 26:33-35, 40-42; II Chronicles 7:14; Jeremiah 29:10-14). And while Daniel was presenting himself before the Lord in this manner, the angel Gabriel (who had been sent at the very beginning of his prayer and supplication) appeared to him, making known to Daniel that he was there to provide more “skill and understanding” surrounding the matter Daniel had been praying about (Daniel 9:20-23). Then, to bring this to pass, Gabriel made known to Daniel the prophecy of the Seventy Sevens (Daniel 9:24-27). 

“Years” are in view in the context of the prophecy — the seventy-year captivity in Babylon from Jeremiah’s prophecy that Daniel had been praying about. Thus, it would only be natural to continue this thought and understand the prophecy of the Seventy Sevens as sevens of years.

This would be in contrast to the only other place in the Book of Daniel where the Hebrew word shabua appears, in Daniel 10:2-3. In these two verses, the shabua is specifically stated to be sevens of days. The Hebrew text has the word for “days” (yom) following the word shabua, letting the reader know that the sevens in view here are different than the sevens in the immediately preceding section (Daniel 9:24-27).

(Most English translations [e.g., KJV, ASV, NASB] use “weeks” to translate shabua in both places in Daniel, probably causing an element of confusion, for the context in one shows that sevens of years are in view, and the text in the other shows that sevens of days are in view. The NIV translators took a different approach, using “sevens” in chapter nine but “weeks” in chapter ten.)

In short, the angel Gabriel made known to Daniel that it was NOT JUST ten sevens (70 years) BUT seventy sevens (490 years) that the Jewish people would have to remain in Gentile lands before being reestablished in their own land, with that seen introduced at the beginning of the prophecy then brought to pass — “to finish the transgression…” (Daniel 9:24b).

(The seventy years spent in Babylon, in one respect, foreshadow a much longer period of time during which the land from which the Jewish people had been uprooted would, of necessity, lie fallow and realize her Sabbaths. The land would need TO lie fallow for seventy Sabbath years, something necessary to fulfill the requirements OF the Law [Leviticus 25:3-5; 26:33-35; cf. II Chronicles 36:20-21]. And, with a Sabbath year occurring ONLY once every seven years, this would require seven TIMES seventy years — four hundred ninety years.

This is what the angel Gabriel made known to Daniel through the prophecy in Daniel 9:24-27. A remnant would be allowed to return at the end OF seventy years. BUT the return of the entire nation and the restoration of the theocracy would have TO await the complete fulfillment OF the four hundred ninety years.

Then, in another respect, according to Jeremiah’s prophecy, the Israelites had spent the complete time removed from their land, in Gentile lands, which God had specified [seventy years — a complete period of time (7X10, both numbers showing completeness)]. Also, according to Jeremiah’s prophecy [Jeremiah 25:11-12; 29:10-14], concerning God visiting and restoring the Jewish people at the end of these seventy years, the entire nation COULD have returned at this time HAD national repentance occurred.

BUT the nation, by large, at the end OF these seventy years HAD settled down in Babylon and remained unrepentant. Thus, any continued restoration of the nation beyond a returning remnant — with repentance shown by a remnant of the people [e.g., Daniel 9:1-19] — did NOT occur at this time. And another period of time during which Israel would have to remain in Gentile lands was revealed — NOT just seventy years this time but intensified BY SEVEN [7X70], four hundred ninety years. The time during which the Jewish people would remain dispersed among the nations was increased in exact accordance with God’s warning previously revealed through Moses [Leviticus 26:14-21].

[Something very similar TO the seemingly paradoxical overall scope of the preceding was seen almost six hundred years later. This occurred in connection with the Jewish people very near the end OF the four hundred ninety years, during the offer and reoffer OF the kingdom of the heavens TO Israel, contingent ON national repentance (as seen in the gospel accounts and the Book of Acts).

In one respect, had national repentance occurred, the kingdom would have been restored to Israel AT the full end of Daniel’s prophecy (with time in the last “seven” [seventieth week] of the prophecy being brought to completion]. BUT, in another respect, the kingdom could NOT have been restored to Israel at this time; time in the prophecy, of necessity, had TO stop one “seven” short of completion [e.g., ONLY 4,000 of the 6,000 years in the septenary arrangement OF time during Man’s Day, introduced in Genesis 1:1-2:3, had expired; and the 2,000-year dispensation IN which God would deal with the Church — seen, for example, in Genesis 24 — MUST yet occur)].)

Also, between the end of the seventy years OF Jeremiah’s prophecy concerning the Israelites in Babylon and the beginning OF Daniel’s prophecy of the four hundred ninety years, bringing matters surrounding the dispersion of the Jewish people TO a close, there is another break in time. Jeremiah’s prophecy of the seventy years ended about 535 B.C., but Daniel’s prophecy concerning the four hundred ninety years did NOT begin until about 444 B.C.

The prophecy of the Seventy Sevens begins with “the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem” (Daniel 9:25a), and that command, according TO Nehemiah chapters one and two was issued by the Persian king, Artaxerxes, in the twentieth year of his reign, which, according to secular history, was 445 or 444 B.C.

(There are earlier decrees in Ezra, issued by Cyrus, Darius, and Artaxerxes [Ezra 1:1-2; 4:1-5, 11-24; 6:1-5, 14-15; 7:11, 20, 27], which had to do with the Temple. But the decree by Artaxerxes in Nehemiah is the only decree issued which had to do with the city itself, which the prophecy in Daniel specifically singles out [Daniel 2:1ff]. And this is the ONLY decree which fits the chronology OF the prophecy in Daniel; and it fits this chronology exactly, TO the day.)

From the issuing OF the decree by Artaxerxes “to restore and to build Jerusalem” UNTIL the time Israel’s Messiah appeared (cf. Daniel 9:9; Matthew 21:1ff) would BE sixty-nine sevens (483 years), and AT the end of this time Israel’s Messiah would BE “cut off” (Daniel 9:25-26a).

(The Hebrew word translated “cut off,” karath, is used many times in the O.T. referring to the death of individuals [e.g., Leviticus 7:20, 25, 27; Numbers 19:13, 20]. And it is apparent that this IS the manner in which the word is used relative TO Israel’s Messiah in Daniel 9:26a.

To see and understand how the time from Artaxerxes’ decree to Christ’s crucifixion is exactly 483 years [using 444 B.C. and 33 A.D. respectively], note these figures: 444 + 33 = 477 years. But these are years of 365 days per year [or 366 days every fourth year], and Scripture uses a 360-day year [cf. Genesis 7:11, 24; 8:3-4; Daniel 7:25; Revelation 11:2-3; 12:14; 13:5]. To convert, the total number of days is needed. Thus, 477 X 365.25 [.25 added for leap years] = 174,224 days. Then, divide 174,224 by 360, which gives 483.96 years. But bear in mind that only parts of the first and last years are to be used, which would leave exactly 483 years if the correct beginning and ending dates within their corresponding years were used [444 B.C. and 33 A.D.].

Thus, the Jewish people at the time of Christ’s first appearance could have looked at Daniel’s prophecy and Artaxerxes’ decree and not ONLY have known that their Messiah would be in their midst in 33 A.D. but ALSO that they would slay their Messiah that year. Christ was the Paschal Lamb, this Lamb was given to Israel, ONLY Israel could slay this Lamb, and knowledgeable Jews would have known that. In fact, a knowledgeable Jew could have known the exact day and time Israel would slay their Messiah in 33 A.D., for he would have known THE exact day and time when Israel would slay the paschal lambs.)

Then, according to Daniel’s prophecy, the Messianic Era would BE ushered in seven years following Messiah’s death [cf. Daniel 9:24, 26]. But, of course, this didn’t happen. Instead, God stopped the clock, so to speak, AT the time Israel crucified her Messiah; and the last seven years await A future fulfillment. 

The break in time occurs in the middle of verse twenty-six, between Messiah’s death and the appearance of “the people of the prince,” who will destroy “the city [Jerusalem] and the sanctuary [the rebuilt Temple on the Temple Mount].” “The people of the prince” is a Hebrew idiom referring to the prince himself (cf. Daniel 7:18, 27 where this same expression is used).

(Note that this destruction of Jerusalem and the sanctuary can only refer to a future destruction, NOT to the past destruction in 70 A.D., AS often taught [cf. Matthew 24:15-23; Luke 21:20-24; II Thessalonians 2:3-4; Revelation 11:1-2] Events in the prophecy MUST occur during time covered BY the prophecy itself.)

This destroying prince IS the man who will have made the seven-year covenant “with many” IN Israel, marking the beginning OF the last seven years of Daniel’s prophecy (Daniel 9:27). This is the man seen riding forth ON a white horse in the Book of Revelation WHEN the first seal is broken, “conquering, and to conquer” (Revelation 6:1-2). And, as the ratifying OF this covenant will mark the beginning of the seventieth seven in the Book of Daniel, the breaking OF the first seal of the scroll will mark the beginning OF this period in the Book of Revelation.

(Some have sought to see the antecedent of the pronoun “he” in Daniel 9:27 [the one who makes the covenant with many in Israel] referring back to the Messiah Who was to be slain rather than to the prince that would come in Daniel 9:26. Grammatically, either could conceivably be the antecedent. However, “the prince” IS the nearer antecedent, and the rules of grammar always favor THE nearer as the antecedent in cases of this nature, unless, of course, something in the passage clearly shows that IT isn’t.

In this case though, such doesn’t exist. In fact, the passage clearly shows just the opposite, that “Messiah” couldn’t possibly BE the antecedent [e.g., Israel’s Messiah didn’t make a covenant with His people at the time OF His first coming; and the Jewish sacrifices didn’t stop until the Temple WAS destroyed in 70 A.D.].)

When this future prince appears and makes his covenant “with many” in Israel, the Jewish people, in accordance with time in the prophecy, will be placed IN the position of having just crucified their Messiah. The crucifixion occurred AT the very end of and closed out the sixty-ninth seven.

The Jewish people, time-wise in relation to the prophecy, will then be living AT the very beginning of the seventieth and last seven. Time for them will BE exactly as if Christ were still on the Cross, or had just been placed in the tomb, awaiting resurrection. And God will deal with THE Jewish people accordingly (cf. Matthew 23:37-39).
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Word Document:  Daniel’s Seventy-Week Prophecy by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

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To website CONTENTS Page.
The Foundation
Divinely Laid in Genesis 1:1-2:3
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

At the outset of His Word, God began by setting forth a skeletal outline of the whole panorama of that which He was about to reveal; and His subsequent revelation would be the sinews, flesh, and skin to cover the bones that form the skeletal outline.

Or, to state the matter another way, at the outset of His Word, God began by laying a foundational structure, upon which the whole framework of His revelation to man would subsequently be built.

Where and how does one properly begin a study of the Word of God? There’s only one place and one way to begin in a proper manner. A person must begin where God began and study the Word after the manner in which God established matters at the beginning.

A person must begin where the skeletal outline has been given. A person must begin where the foundation has been laid. If one begins elsewhere, he will have nothing upon which to build the structure; he will have nothing upon which to attach the sinews, flesh, and skin.

And herein lies the very reason for the vast confusion which presently exists in theological circles today. Christians have failed to begin with the foundational structure. They do not know and understand this structure. And, as a consequence, they have no bones upon which to place the sinews, flesh, and skin; they have no foundation upon which to build.

Genesis 1:1-2:3

Genesis is the book of beginnings, and the opening thirty-four verses (Genesis 1:1-2:3) present a foundational outline in skeletal form, revealing the whole panorama of Scripture, from the beginning to the end; and if one understands this foundational outline first, he will be in a position to see all which follows within a correct perspective. He will be able to see all which follows in relation to God’s Own preestablished structure of His Word.

That would be to say, if one views the bones forming the skeletal framework after the correct fashion first, he will be in a position to properly and correctly clothe this framework with all of the God-provided sinews, flesh, and skin which follow — in complete keeping with that which God has revealed — placing them in their proper and correct positions upon the bones.

However, if one doesn’t see and understand the skeletal framework first, he will be in no position to properly handle that which follows. He will have no beginning point of reference, negatively affecting his knowledge and understanding of any subsequent portion of Scripture. He will see only disconnected verses or disconnected sections of Scripture, and he will have no way to properly relate these verses or sections to the whole of Scripture.

Thus, two things could be said about the beginning point in Scripture:

1) A person must begin where God began.

2) A person, aside from beginning where God began, must understand aright that which God has revealed in these opening verses.

Nothing is more important than these two prerequisites in Biblical study.

Genesis 1:1-2:3 begins with a simple statement concerning God’s creation of the heavens and the earth (1:1). Then disorder entered where only perfect order had previously existed (1:2a). The reason for this disorder is revealed elsewhere in Scripture.

Satan, God’s appointed ruler over the earth, sought to “exalt” his throne and be “like the most High” (Isaiah 14:12-17). And, as a result, his kingdom — the province over which he ruled, i.e., the earth (Ezekiel 28:14-16) — was reduced to a ruin.

In the words of Scripture, “And the earth was [lit., ‘But the earth became’] without form, and void; and darkness was [‘became’] upon the face of the deep…” (Genesis 1:2a).

All of this occurred during a dateless past over 6,000 years ago. That’s really all man can know about “time” concerning that which is revealed in Genesis 1:1-2a. The things revealed in these verses could have occurred over aeons of time or they could have occurred over a relatively short period within one aeon. We’re simply not told.

Beginning with the latter part of verse two is where God begins to count time insofar as the revelation of Himself, His plans, and His purposes are concerned. The movement of the Spirit of God upon the face of the waters, covering the ruined creation below, marks the beginning point of a six-day period which God used to restore the ruined material creation (Genesis 1:2-25 [2b]). Then, at the end of His restorative work on the sixth day, God created man to rule the restored domain (Genesis 1:26ff). And on the seventh day God rested from all His work (Genesis 2:1-3).

The preceding is the skeletal framework upon which all subsequent Scripture rests. The six and seven days foreshadow six and seven thousand years of time (II Peter 3:4-8; cf. Matthew 17:1ff; II Peter 1:15-18), and, with very few exceptions, the whole of Scripture concerns itself with events during these 7,000 years. Scripture reveals events preceding the 7,000 years (e.g., Genesis 1:1-2a; Isaiah 14:12-14) or events following the 7,000 years (e.g., II Peter 3:10-13; Revelation 21:1ff) only to an extent which God deemed necessary for man to properly relate and understand events within the framework of the revealed 7,000 years to events which both preceded and would follow.

As God worked six days to restore the ruined material creation in Genesis 1:2-25 [2b], He is presently working six more days — 6,000 years — to restore two present ruined creations (ruined man, and the ruined material creation [under a curse]). At the end of His restorative work in Genesis, God rested on the seventh day, and He is going to do exactly the same thing at the end of His restorative work in the present restoration. At the end of six days — at the end of 6,000 years — He is going to rest for one day once again. That is, He is going to rest for 1,000 years, the earth’s coming Messianic Era.

These events outlining God’s activity within the six and seven days in Genesis 1:2b-2:3 are fraught with symbolism and meaning. The skeletal framework is complete within these verses (including vv. 1, 2a, for the “Restoration,” and the “Rest” following the restoration [1:2b ff], could not be understood apart from the prior revealed “Creation” and “Ruin” of the creation), and nothing superfluous has been given. It is all by Divine design.

Thus, the foundational structure upon which all subsequent Scripture rests is given at the very outset of God’s revelation to man, in the first thirty-four verses. And a person reading this book must either attach the sinews, flesh, and skin (all subsequent revelation) to these bones alone (Genesis 1:1-2:3) or lack a foundational structure upon which to build, for God has provided no other.

From Moses to John

Scripture can be properly divided into seven parts, each forming a complete section of Scripture (though these sections cannot stand alone):

The first and second divisions (Genesis 1:1, 2a [Creation, Ruin] and Genesis 1:2-2:3 [2b] [Restoration, Rest]), as has been demonstrated, cover the foundational structure upon which the remainder rests.

The third division (Genesis 2:4-11:26) covers the first 2,000 years of human history extending from Adam to Abraham.

The fourth division (the remainder of the O.T.) begins with Abraham and covers the next 2,000 years of human history, wherein God called one man out from Ur of the Chaldees to be the channel through whom He, from that point forward, would deal with mankind at large.

The fifth division (The N.T. through Revelation 19a) begins with the first advent of Messiah and covers the next 2,000 years of human history, wherein the Lamb of God dies (followed by burial, resurrection, and ascension), Israel is set aside, the Church is called into existence, and God subsequently deals with Israel again during a final seven years (after the Church has been removed).

The sixth division (Revelation 19-20:15 [19b]) covers Messiah’s return, the next 1,000 years of human history (the long awaited Messianic Era), and events immediately following.

Then the seventh division (Revelation 21; 22) has to do with the eternal ages which follow the Messianic Era (except for several parts which reflect back on events occurring during the 7,000 years [Revelation 21:7ff; 22:7ff]).

Now, to illustrate how later revelation is inseparably connected with earlier revelation and how any revelation subsequent to Genesis 1:1-2:3 must be inseparably connected with these opening verses of Genesis, note the thousand years in Revelation 20:1-7. This is not the first time that the thousand years are mentioned in Scripture. Quite the contrary. Instead, this is the last time. The first mention of the thousand years in Scripture is within the skeletal framework at the beginning, in Genesis 2:1-3. The seventh day foreshadows these years, which comprise the seventh millennium.

Not only that, but the thousand years in Revelation 20:1-7 are mentioned numerous places throughout the Scriptures covering and dealing with the 6,000 years of time preceding the Messianic Era. This concluding 1,000-year period is the point in time toward which everything moves, with the repeated mention of this period, time after time, being a very natural and necessary part of Scripture.

For example, the Sabbath given to Israel was a “sign” pointing to a future Sabbath, a future seventh day of rest (Exodus 31:13-17). Every time that the Israelites kept the Sabbath, at the end of six days of work, they were acknowledging that which God had set forth in the foundational framework at the very beginning (Exodus 31:15-17). They were acknowledging that God was going to work six days in the latter restoration (as He did in the former) and rest on the seventh day (as He did in the former).

(The pattern was set perfect in the beginning. And the latter restoration and rest, following Adam’s fall, must follow the pattern in exact detail, in every respect.

The thousand years in Revelation 20:1-7 [which follow 6,000 years of work] carry exactly the same relationship to Genesis 2:1-3 as the Sabbath given to Israel [which followed six days of work] carried to these verses. “There remaineth therefore a rest [lit., ‘Sabbath rest’] to the people of God” — a rest which will follow six days of work [Hebrews 4:9; cf. Hebrews 4:4].)

Then reference is made different places in Scripture to part or all of the six and seven days, referring to 6,000 and 7,000 years, drawing from Genesis 1:2-2:3 [2b] (cf. Numbers 19:11-19; II Samuel 1:1-2; Hosea 5:15-6:2; Jonah 1:17; Matthew 16:28-17:5; John 1:29, 35, 43, 2:1; 11:6-7).

Then, beyond that, events surrounding the coming Messianic Era — events occurring during the seventh day, the seventh 1,000-year period — are mentioned time after time after time throughout Scripture (e.g., Isaiah 2:1-5; 4:1-6; 14:1-8; Jeremiah 30:1-9; 31:31-33; Ezekiel 36:24-28; 37:1ff; Matthew 24:30-31; Acts 15:14-18; Romans 11:25-26).

It will be in that day that the blessings of Genesis 12:2-3 will be realized in their fullness by both Israel and the nations; it will be in that day that Christ will exercise the Melchizedek priesthood, blessing the descendants of Abraham, both heavenly and earthly (Genesis 14:18-19); it will be in that day that the seed of Abraham, both heavenly and earthly, will “possess the gate of [i.e., rule over]” the enemy (Genesis 22:17-18); it will be in that day that God will restore Israel to her rightful place (Genesis 25:1ff). And on and on one could go with that which God has revealed in His Word about that coming seventh day.

It is all as Nathaniel West said over one hundred years ago in his book, The Thousand Years in Both Testaments:

“What we find in the New Testament as its outcome in respect to the ages and the kingdom, has already lain in the bosom of the Old Testament from the beginning… Nothing appears in the later revelation that was not hid in the earlier, nothing in John that was not in Moses… If we study the eschatology of the Old Testament, we will find the Eschata there identical with the Eschata of the New Testament, and the Eschatology of both Testaments the same…if ‘the thousand years’ are not in Moses, the Psalms, and the Prophets, they have no right to be in John.” 

Accordingly, any study of the thousand years cannot possibly begin with what God has revealed in Revelation 20:1-7. Rather, it must, of necessity, begin with what God has revealed in Genesis 2:1-3. Revelation 20:1-7 forms the capstone to the matter. This section of Scripture covers in very brief form that which the prophets have previously covered in great detail. And only the simple statement need be made in the capstone, for all the details have already been given.

The whole matter is really that simple if one remains within the framework of the way God has structured His revelation to man.
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Word Document:  The Foundation by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - The Foundation By Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Without Form and Void
Tohu Wavohu
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“In the beginning God created the heaven [‘the heavens’] and the earth.

And the earth was without form and void [‘But the earth became tohu wavohu’]; and darkness was [‘became’] upon the face of the deep…” (Genesis 1:1-2a).

Scripture opens in Genesis with a complete and continuous section — Genesis 1:1-2:3, thirty-four verses — Divinely designed to foreshadow in a skeletal, succinct manner that contained in the whole of subsequent Scripture about to follow. Possessing a correct understanding and interpretation of this opening section, with the numeric structure seen therein, cannot be overemphasized. But, more often than not, the converse of that is true among Christians.

God’s work during the six days in these opening verses is usually, though erroneously, understood as creation alone (i.e., verses describing God’s creation of the heavens and the earth, from Genesis 1:1, over a six-day period of time), with little to no significance seen in the six days themselves, along with the following seventh day of rest.

Then another school of thought views Genesis 1:1 as other than an absolute beginning. Those following this school of thought understand the opening chapter of Genesis to begin at the time of restoration, with the creation and a subsequent ruin of the creation having previously occurred but not seen at this beginning point in Scripture.

However, if Scripture is compared with Scripture, and the whole of subsequent Scripture is viewed in the light of the way Scripture opens in Genesis, creation alone or restoration alone, followed by a day of rest, cannot possibly be the correct understanding of this opening section.

The words “without form and void” in the KJV English text of Genesis 1:2a are a translation of the Hebrew words tohu wavohu (“formless and void,” NASB; “formless and empty,” NIV; “waste and void,” ASV).

These two words are used together only two other places throughout all of the Old Testament — in Isaiah 34:11 and Jeremiah 4:23. And both of these passages present a ruin of that previously seen existing in an orderly state.

In Isaiah 34:11, Edom, representing all nations in the future Lord’s Day (Isaiah 34:6), was destined to become tohu wavohu (translated “confusion” and “emptiness” [KJV], “desolation” and “emptiness” [NASB]).

And in Jeremiah 4:23-28, there is a comparison of that which was about to occur relative to the land of Israel to that which had previously occurred relative to the earth in Genesis 1:2a.

The land of Israel was about to become tohu wavohu (translate the Hebrew word eretz [Jeremiah 4:20, 23, 27-28], meaning “land” or “earth,” as “land” throughout).

That is, as seen in Jeremiah 4:23-28, God was about to do the same thing to the land of Israel (cf. Jeremiah 4:14-22) that He had previously done to the earth in Genesis 1:2a. And the reason for both of these actions — that which God was about to do to the land of Israel, and that which He had previously done to the earth — was the same. Sin had entered (sin on the part of the Jewish people in the former, and sin on the part of Satan in the latter).

And, in complete keeping with this type understanding of the use of tohu wavohu in Isaiah 34:11 and Jeremiah 4:23, Isaiah 45:18 (where the word tohu is used, translated “in vain”) clearly states that God did not create the earth (in Genesis 1:1) in the manner described in Genesis 1:2a. Isaiah 45:18 states that God “created it [the earth] not in vain [not ‘tohu,’ not ‘without form,’].”

Thus, if Genesis 1:2a is to be understood in the light of related Scripture bearing on the subject (which it must be [cf. Psalm 12:6; Isaiah 8:20; 28:10; I Corinthians 2:13]), there can be only one possible interpretationthe ruin of a prior existing creation (from v. 1), because of sin. The earth from verse one “became” tohu wavohu.

(The word “was” in Genesis 1:2a is a translation of hayah in the Hebrew text, a verb of being. This word appears twenty-seven times in the first chapter and is used in this chapter far more in the sense of “became” than “was,” though English translations do not normally reflect this fact [ref. the author’s book, The Study of Scripture BOOK, Chapter 2, The Septenary Arrangement of Scripture, in this site.)

The ruin seen in both Genesis 1:2a and Jeremiah 4:23 occurred for a reason (sin had entered); and the ruin in both verses occurred with a view to eventual restoration. And the overall teaching from Isaiah 34:11 is the same.

Then, the restoration seen in both the continuing text of Genesis chapter one (Genesis 1:2-25 [2b]) and in the overall passage of Isaiah 34:11 and Jeremiah 4:23ff, as well as in related Scripture (e.g., Isaiah 35:1ff), is seen occurring for a purpose, which is regal.

Then, the whole of subsequent Scripture is perfectly in line with this type understanding of the opening section of Scripture. The whole of subsequent Scripture is built on a septenary structure, with the foundation established and set in an unchangeable fashion at the beginning, in Genesis 1:1-2:3.

That is to say:

The heavens and the earth were created, there was a ruin of the material creation (because of sin), God took six days to restore the ruined creation, and He rested the seventh day.

Man was created on the sixth day, man fell into a state of ruin (because of sin), God is presently taking six days (6,000 years) to restore man, and God will rest the seventh day (the seventh 1,000-year period [cf. II Peter 1:15-18; 3:3-8]).

And the latter restoration, patterned after the former restoration, is what the whole of Scripture is about. The whole of Scripture is about the same thing initially introduced and established in an unchangeable fashion in the opening thirty-four verses of Genesis (Genesis 1:1-2:3).

The whole of Scripture is about the creation of man, his ruin, his restoration over a six-day period (over a 6,000-year period), followed by a seventh day of rest (a seventh 1,000-year period — the Sabbath rest awaiting the people of God [Hebrews 4:9; cf. Hebrews 4:3-4], the Messianic Era).

Man would evidently have been expected to understand this opening section of Scripture after the preceding fashion at the time it was written. And subsequent Scripture simply verifies the correctness of the way man would have been expected to understand this opening section at that time, even apart from other revelation.

(Note one thing about the restoration in Genesis 1:2b-25 which should be understood. This restoration could only have been a complete restoration. No trace of “the world that then was” [the world preceding the ruin seen in Genesis 1:2a], or the subsequent ruined earth [in Genesis 1:2a], can be seen “in the heavens and the earth, which are now.”

A complete restoration would have removed all traces of anything having to do with “the world that then was” or with that world during the time when it lay in a ruined state. That is to say, geology today cannot show evidence of any type pre-existing creation or a ruin of that pre-existing creation, for a complete restoration — the only type restoration possible through the Divine work seen in Genesis chapter one — would have removed all traces of a pre-existing creation and ruin.

Had the preceding not been the case, God would have created man, untainted by sin, through using that tainted by sin [the earth] — an impossibility.

In this respect, all that exists in the present secular world of history and science — e.g., the complete fossil record, the dinosaurs, topographical formations such as the Grand Canyon, etc. — would all have to be placed this side of the restoration seen in Genesis 1:2b-25, within time covered by “the heavens and the earth, which are now.”

That which occurred during and resulted from the Noachian Flood, 1,656 years following the restoration of the earth [Genesis 6-8], along with later topographical changes on the earth during the days of Peleg [born 100 years after the Flood (Genesis 10:25)], must be looked to for an explanation of numerous things of the preceding nature, not to a world lying in ruins in Genesis 1:2a, or to a world existing prior to that time.)

Viewing the whole of Scripture, the correct interpretation of the opening verses of Genesis can be clearly and unquestionably presented and understood through:

1) The manner in which the Hebrew words from Genesis 1:2a, tohu wavohu, are used elsewhere in Scripture (interpreting Scripture in the light of Scripture [Isaiah 34:11; 45:18; Jeremiah 4:23]).

2) And the typical nature of Old Testament history (I Corinthians 10:6, 11), which has been set forth in a very evident, Divinely established septenary arrangement.

And these opening verses, providing the Divinely established basis for that which follows, must be understood accordingly.

The Bible is a book of redemption; and only a correct view of the opening verses of Genesis can reflect positively, at the very outset, on God’s redemptive message as a whole — the restoration of a ruined creation, performed in its entirety through Divine intervention, for a revealed purpose.

An incorrect view can, on the other hand, only have negative ramifications. Creation alone, apart from a ruin and restoration of the creation, fails to convey the complete message at the outset of the Word; and Restoration alone likewise fails to convey the complete message at this opening point in Scripture.

It is as F. W. Grant stated years ago relative to the existing parallel between the creation and ruin of the earth and the subsequent creation and ruin of man:

“The thought of a ruined condition of the earth succeeding its original creation…is…required by the typical view [that is, the earth’s creation, ruin, and subsequent restoration forms a type of (foreshadows) man’s creation, ruin, and subsequent restoration].”

(In line with the preceding, refer to the author’s pamphlet titled, “Genesis and John.” The same septenary structure seen beginning Genesis is also seen beginning John; and John’s gospel, for this and other reasons, should begin the N.T., paralleling Genesis beginning the O.T.

This septenary structure in Genesis deals with the restoration of a ruined material creation; and this same septenary structure in John deals with the restoration of that foreshadowed in the Genesis account — the restoration of ruined man.

And, beyond the septenary structure beginning both books, in the opening two chapters of each book, the subject matter in both books is the same throughout. In Genesis, the subject matter is set forth in innumerable types; in John, it is set forth in eight signs.)

Accordingly, the opening verses of Genesis cannot deal with creation alone. Nor can these opening verses deal with restoration alone.

Along with the grammatical problem of dealing with tohu wavohu in this respect, creation alone would be out of line with the whole of Scripture, beginning with the central theme of Scripture, the message of redemption.

And restoration alone, though not out of line with the grammatical problem seen in tohu wavohu, is, as creation alone, out of line with the whole of Scripture, beginning with the central theme of Scripture, the message of redemption.

The only interpretative view which will fit — at all points — within the Divinely established septenary arrangement of Scripture (which has it basis in these opening verses) is:

Creation (an absolute beginning, and a perfect creation [Genesis 1:1]).

A Ruin of the Creation (Genesis 1:2a).

A Restoration of the Ruined Creation (Genesis 1:2-25 [2b]).

Rest (in the type — six twenty-four-hour days of restorative work, followed by a twenty-four-hour day of rest; in the antitype — six 1,000-year days of restorative work, followed by a 1,000-year day of rest [Genesis 1:2-2:3 [2b]).
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Word Document:  Without Form and Void by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Without Form and Void by Arlen Chitwood.pdf  which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

Also reference Without Form and Void, another commentary, in this site.

To website CONTENTS Page.
An End, A New Beginning
The End of Man’s Day, The Beginning of the Lord’s Day
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

After the removal of the Church and the establishment of a seven-year covenant with Israel by the man of sin, there will be a time of trouble on this earth such as has not existed “since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor shall ever be.” And this time of trouble will be of such a nature that “except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved” (Matthew 24:21-22).

This is what lies in the immediate future, just ahead, for “the enlightened world” at the beginning of the twenty-first century. And this period of time, the Tribulation, lasting seven years, will be marked centrally by Satan’s final and most intense efforts to destroy the nation of Israel. This will be Satan’s final onslaught against Israel, which will bring anti-Semitism to its most intense state in history, immediately before it is brought to an end.

Anti-Semitism

Note a short history of anti-Semitism under Satan, from its beginning to modern times.

The Amalekites were the first of the Gentile nations to war against Israel following the birth of the Israeli nation and the Exodus from Egypt (Exodus 17:8; Numbers 24:20). Because of this move by the Amalekites, God pronounced a terminal judgment upon this nation:

“I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven” (Exodus 17:14).

The Israelites became the appointed executioners of the Amalekites (Deuteronomy 25:17-19), but because of repeated failures to carry out the Lord’s command completely, the Amalekites remained in existence as the bitter enemies of the Israelites for over seven hundred years beyond the Exodus (cf. I Samuel 15:2-3, 7-9; II Samuel 1:6-10).

The sentence pronounced upon the Amalekites in Exodus 17:14 was not carried out in its completeness until the days of Hezekiah (I Chronicles 4:39-43), and from that point in history the Amalekites ceased to exist. Although the Amalekites figured prominently in Old Testament history, dating all the way back to the days of Abraham (Genesis 14:7), archaeologists today have failed to unearth a single trace of this nation’s existence. The Amalekites have been “utterly put out of remembrance,” just as God promised. They exist on the pages of Scripture alone.

There is a law of “first mention” in Scriptural interpretation which states that the first time a subject is mentioned, the subject remains unchanged throughout Scripture.

Exodus chapter seventeen presents the first mention following the Exodus of Satan’s move against Israel, along with God’s attitude toward this move. Thus, the pattern is set in this chapter for Satan’s strategy in his efforts to destroy Israel through the use of Gentile national powers, and the pattern is also set (based on previously revealed principles) concerning God’s attitude toward a Gentile nation which would allow itself to be so used.

The basic principles governing God’s attitude toward and treatment of individuals or nations participating in anti-Semitism were established during the days of Abraham (Genesis 12:3), and these principles, as the principles governing the law of first mention in Exodus chapter seventeen, remain unchanged throughout Scripture.

Every nation which has lifted its hand against Israel throughout history has either suffered destruction or awaits destruction.

The Assyrians, like the Amalekites, were wiped out of existence for allowing themselves to be used by Satan against Israel. No trace of this once mighty nation remains today.

Other nations throughout history which succumbed to the same manner of Satanic leadership have also suffered destruction, but have been allowed to continue their national existence as base powers. Not a single nation has escaped the edge of the sword, though for some today, judgment is pending.

Biblical principles governing Israel and her relationship to the Gentile nations have been established, and God must act in accordance with these principles set forth in His Word.

During modern times the world has witnessed anew one of the worst atrocities ever perpetrated upon the Jewish people by a Gentile nation. The only thing which will explain the actions of the Third Reich under Hitler, during particularly the years 1939-1945, is that which Scripture reveals concerning Satan’s attitude toward and method of attack against God’s firstborn son, Israel.

The leaders of the Third Reich allowed themselves to be used by Satan in his ceaseless efforts to destroy Israel. The result of this effort at the end of twelve years (1933-1945) was the death of six million Jews, the death of millions of others in slave labor or death camps, the death of six and one-half million Germans (both military and civilian), and the German nation itself left in ruins.

Germany, by no means though, has been the last of the nations to raise its hand against Israel and suffer destruction, for Satan remains very active in the affairs of man within his kingdom. Consequently, anti-Semitic nations presently exist — nations awaiting destruction (e.g., Iran and others today, along with Gentile nations worldwide which will turn against Israel during the Tribulation and appear at the battle of Armageddon).

(There is an irony seen in anti-Semitism. Israel was brought into existence to be the channel through which God would bless all of the Gentile nations [Genesis 12:1-3]. And the practice of anti-Semitism by any nation is simply an attempt by that nation to separate itself from God’s blessings.)

Armageddon (Isaiah 63:1-6; Ezekiel 38; 39; Joel 3:2-16; Revelation 14:14-20; 19:17-21)

The battle of Armageddon has to do with Satan’s final attempt to prevent Israel’s Messiah from exercising the dominion which he himself presently possesses, and to prevent the nation of Israel from occupying the supremacy which Gentile nations have occupied for the past 2,600 years. This final and climactic battle will be the outgrowth of all Satan’s efforts to destroy Israel through the man of sin during the Tribulation.

Satan’s final effort, climaxing in Armageddon, is foreshadowed in Psalm 83:1-8 by a ten-kingdom confederation of nations moving against Israel. Their avowed purpose in verse four of this Psalm echoes Satan’s unchanging approach throughout history:

“Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.”

The thought goes all the way back to the death of the firstborn in Egypt (Exodus 4:23; 12:1ff), and God’s subsequent announced destruction of the Amalekites in the wilderness (Exodus 17:14). The expressions “my son [God’s son], even my firstborn” and “thy son [Pharaoh’s son], even thy firstborn” in Exodus 4:22-23 refer to both personal and national entities, with “sonship” having to do with rulership.

Egypt was the ruling nation under Satan, and Israel was about to become the ruling nation under God. God destroyed Satan’s firstborn (Egypt); and, following the Red Sea passage, when Amalek came against Israel on the march to Mount Sinai, God announced that He would “utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.”

Armageddon will be Satan’s final, climactic attempt to reverse the God-decreed death of his firstborn (the future world kingdom under the Assyrian, typified by the Egyptian kingdom under the past Assyrian). And he will vainly seek to accomplish this task by destroying God’s firstborn (Israel), “that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.”

(Note that “sonship” is also involved with the leaders of the two opposing forces, for the leader of the Gentile nations will be Satan’s son [Genesis 3:15], the false Messiah, while the Protector of Israel will be God’s Son, the true Messiah.)

Christ will return at the end of the Tribulation, Old Testament saints will be raised from the dead, and the “whole house of Israel [both those who are living (following Israel’s national conversion) and those who are raised from the dead]” will be restored to the land of Israel. It will be then — prior to the actual ushering in of the Messianic Era — that the kings of the earth under the leadership of “the beast” will move against the “King of kings, and Lord of lords” in Jerusalem (cf. Joel 3:16; Revelation 19:19).

Just as Satan has used various Gentile nations throughout Man’s Day, vainly seeking to accomplish his God-dishonoring purpose, he will use all the Gentile nations of the world in his last great attempt to effect his plans and purposes immediately preceding his dethronement.

“The beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies,” will be “gathered together to make war against him [Christ]…and against his army” (Revelation 19:19). Although Christ will possess an accompanying army (composed of angels [cf. I Thessalonians 3:13; II Thessalonians 1:7; Jude 1:14; Deuteronomy 33:2]), He will enter the battle alone. It was alone that He suffered, bled, and died; and it will be alone that He treads His enemies under His feet (Isaiah 63:1-6).

At the first coming of Christ, immediately before His crucifixion, Roman soldiers led Him to the governor’s palace, stripped Him of His garments, arrayed Him in a scarlet robe, and placed a crown of thorns on His head and a reed (symbolizing the sceptre of governmental power) in His right hand. This was done in order to openly ridicule the “King of the Jews,” Whom the Jewish people had rejected, subsequently claiming allegiance to Caesar (John 19:1-15).

The Romans (the center of Gentile power in that day) had subjugated God’s son, Israel; and soldiers from this same Gentile nation were ridiculing God’s Son, Jesus.

“…they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!’ And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head” (Matthew 27:29-30 [29b]).

“This same Jesus” is the One Who will tread the winepress alone. He appeared on earth the first time as “the Lamb of God,” but He will reappear as “the Lion of the tribe of Judah” (cf. John 1:29; Revelation 5:5). He was mocked in the governor’s palace and smitten upon His head with the sceptre. But in that coming day, when He reappears, He will break the sceptre held by the Gentiles, executing “judgment” resulting in “victory” (cf. Matthew 12:20; Isaiah 42:1-3). That will be the day when the Seed of the woman in Genesis 3:15 crushes the head of the Serpent, the head of Satan.

The same scenes which witnessed Christ’s sufferings and humiliation will one day witness His glory and exaltation. Satan’s final attempt to prevent the transfer of power — his own (exhibited through the Beast in that day), his angels, and the Gentile nations, which will be transferred to Christ, the Church, and Israel respectively — will, as in all previous attempts, be quelled.

The Beast and False Prophet will be taken and cast alive into the lake of fire, becoming its first occupants. The kings of the earth, along with their armies, will then be slain in the plain of Megiddo; and Satan (along with his angels) will be bound in the abyss.

Following the battle of Armageddon, God’s Sons will then exercise their rightful positions of authority and power on and over the earth.

God’s son, Israel, will be the supreme nation on earth, holding the sceptre previously held by the Gentile nations.

God’s son, the Church, will exercise supremacy over the nations from the heavens, holding the sceptre previously held by angels ruling under Satan.

And God’s Son, Jesus, will exercise supremacy over all things, holding the sceptre (and far more) previously held by Satan.

Thus will the present age end and the new age begin. “What a termination!” “What a climax!” “What a new beginning!”
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Word Document:  An End, A New Beginning by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - An End, A New Beginning by Arlen Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Israel’s Future Restoration
A Restored Nation, A Healed Land
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt. 

And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.

And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the Lord thy God” (Amos 9:13-15).

A major issue and problem among many Bible teachers and students of the Word today concerns how one is to look upon and treat the present existence of an Israeli nation in the Middle East.

This nation, some 6,000,000 strong, in one respect, CAN’T be there, though it is; but in another respect, this nation MUST be there, which it is.

This nation CAN’T be there in fulfillment of God’s numerous promises throughout the Old Testament to one day restore His dispersed people back to their land; but this nation MUST be there to bring about the fulfillment of the final seven years of Daniel’s Seventy-Week prophecy.

And this is where numerous Bible students, not properly understanding the whole overall issue — particularly as the issue, dealt with throughout the numerous types, beginning in Genesis, is understood in the light of the Prophets — get completely off track and commit mayhem in Biblical interpretation.

In many instances, the present existence of an Israeli nation in the Middle East has been made to be something which it isn’t at all. This present existing nation has been erroneously associated with a fulfillment of or a beginning fulfillment of God’s promises in the Old Testament concerning a regathering of the Jewish people from among all the Gentile nations where He has scattered them.

Sections of Scripture such as Deuteronomy 30:3-5; Jeremiah 30:3, 18; Ezekiel 34:11ff; 36:24ff; 37:1ff; 39:25ff; Amos 9:14 are cited, and it is stated that God is presently regathering His people and restoring their land to a fruitful condition in accordance with His promises (e.g., Deuteronomy 30:9; Ezekiel 36:29-30; Amos 9:13).

However, this is not what Scripture teaches at all. The present nation of Israel cannot possibly exist as some type fulfillment or beginning fulfillment of God’s promises to restore His people; nor can the present productivity of parts of the land of Israel have anything to do with God’s corresponding promises to restore the land as well.

After Two Days, on the Third Day

The Jewish people, in time past, because of disobedience, were removed from their land, with the land left desolate; and these same people, over time, were subsequently scattered among the Gentile nations of the earth.

Israeli disobedience, covering centuries of time, was climaxed almost two millenniums ago by the ancestors of remnants which had been allowed to return to the land over five centuries earlier — the Jewish people slaying their Messiah.

Israel is the Slayer (Acts 2:23, 36; 5:28-30; 7:52), removed from her land and scattered among the nations. And, because Israel is the Slayer, Israel CANNOT return to her land until two points in time:

1) UNTIL after two days (2000 years), on the third day (the third 1,000-year period [Numbers 19:11ff]).

2) UNTIL after the death of the High Priest (which can only refer to the termination of Christ’s present high priestly ministry in the antitype [Numbers 35:15-28]).

There can be no healing for either the people or the land UNTIL this future time.

(For information on the preceding, refer to in this site Appendixes I, II, “The Intractable Middle East Problem” and “The Death of the High Priest” in the author’s book, The Time of the End BOOK; also see the author’s books, Israel from Death to Life BOOK, in this site, and Middle East Peace — How? When?)

Following Repentance

Further, Israel CANNOT be restored to the land UNTIL the nation has been brought to the place of repentance. Israel must first be dealt with concerning that which resulted in the nation’s dispersion among the Gentile nations. This fact is plainly set forth in connection with prophecies pertaining to the Lord regathering and restoring His people (e.g., Deuteronomy 30:1-2; Isaiah 1:16-20; cf. Isaiah 1:2ff).

Further, Israel being brought to the place of repentance, according to Scripture, will not occur UNTIL the latter part of the coming Tribulation, during the latter part of Daniel’s Seventieth Week. This time of trouble which will befall the Jewish people — “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7) — results from Israel’s disobedience and the necessity of bringing the Jewish people to the place of repentance.

This will be a time of unparalleled trouble, designed by God to bring the Jewish people to the end of themselves. During this time they will be brought into such dire straits that they will have no place to turn other than to the Lord (Exodus 3:1-10).

ONLY THEN will the nation repent; and ONLY FOLLOWING REPENTANCE can the nation be restored, with the land being healed.

Messiah’s Return, Jewish Festivals, O.T. Saints

Further, Israel CANNOT return until the nation’s Messiah returns at the end of the Tribulation. According to the sequence set forth in the seven Jewish festivals in Leviticus chapter twenty-three, the Jewish people must look upon their Messiah (with the nation being saved, fulfilling the Passover, the first festival) BEFORE the nation can be regathered (fulfilling the feast of Trumpets, the fifth festival).

(Note that Israel has slain the Lamb, but has yet to apply the blood. The Lamb was slain at Christ’s first coming; Israel though will not apply the blood until Christ’s second coming.

ONLY THEN will the first festival in Leviticus chapter twenty-three be completely fulfilled. And these seven festivals [Jewish festivals, having to do first and foremost with Israel] must be fulfilled in a sequential order.)

Further, Old Testament saints are to be raised from the dead and be restored to the land along with the living at this time. Both the dead (resurrected) and those living at that time will return to the land together (Exodus 13:19). The resurrection of Old Testament saints is set forth in the third of the seven festivals in Leviticus chapter twenty-three — the feast of First Fruits. And this will be fulfilled following the fulfillment of the Passover but prior to the fulfillment of the feast of Trumpets.

Israel possesses a promise which God gave to Solomon almost three thousand years ago concerning repentance, the nation’s healing, and the land being healed:

“If my people [the Jewish people], which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; THEN will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (II Chronicles 7:14).

And exactly the same thing is seen in a promise given through Moses almost five hundred years preceding the promise given through Solomon:

“If they [the Jewish people] shall confess their iniquity, and the iniquity of their fathers, with their trespass which they trespassed against me, and that also they have walked contrary unto me;

And that I have also walked contrary unto them, and have brought them into the land of their enemies; if then their uncircumcised hearts be humbled, and they then accept of the punishment of their iniquity:

THEN will I remember my covenant with Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land” (Leviticus 26:40-42).

Israel can return to the land, with both the nation and the land being healed, ONLY following the nation’s repentance. And the nation’s repentance is placed in Scripture at a time near the end of the Tribulation, in connection with Christ’s return.

Those comprising the present existing nation in the Middle East are there in unrepentance and unbelief, BEFORE the time. And the remaining unrepentant Jewish people (most of the Jews alive today) are still scattered among the Gentile nations, with the Old Testament saints still in their graves.

In this respect, it is simply not possible that the present remnant returning to the land and forming the existing nation in the Middle East can have anything to do with the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies pertaining to Israel’s restoration; nor can a reclamation of parts of the land have anything to do with Old Testament prophecies pertaining to the land being healed.

If either had anything to do with the fulfillment of God’s promises to restore His people to a healed land, God would be acting contrary to His revealed Word — an impossibility.

The remnant of Jews presently in the land is a remnant from the Slayer, which has gone back BEFORE the time. And not only are the Jewish people still unclean through contact with the dead body of their Messiah (the two days are not yet complete), but a remnant from this unclean nation has gone back prior to the time Christ completes His high priestly ministry. And, according to the type in Numbers chapter thirty-five, the Slayer CANNOT return in this manner prior to the time Christ completes His present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary (Numbers 35:28).

The present remnant in the land — a part of the Slayer, returning before it is time to return — leaves this remnant open to great danger. In actuality, it leaves the Jewish people forming this remnant open to experiencing exactly the same thing of which the entire nation is guilty. It leaves them, as the slayer, open to being slain themselves (Numbers 35:26-27).

And this is exactly what is about to happen to the present existing nation of Israel in the Middle East.

Antichrist is about to appear and make a seven-year covenant “with many” in Israel. And after three and one-half years, he will break his covenant, come against Jerusalem with his armies, and seek to wipe this nation off the face of the earth.

The rebuilt temple will be desecrated and destroyed, Jerusalem will be destroyed, and the Jews who do not escape into surrounding Gentile nations will either be slain or sold as slaves throughout the Gentile world. The present existing nation in the Middle East will be completely destroyed, slain as it were (cf. Daniel 9:26, 27; Joel 3:1-8; Matthew 24:15-22; Luke 21:20-24; II Thessalonians 2:3-4; Revelation 12:5ff).

During the latter half of the Tribulation, an Israeli nation, as we know it today, will not exist in the Middle East. Conditions will not only have become similar to those seen in Europe during WWII (Jewish persecution under the Third Reich, prior to the existence of the nation in the Middle East), but they will have become far, far worse.

It will be during this time — days which, unless shortened, no flesh would be saved (Matthew 24:22) — that the Jewish people will be brought to the end of themselves, to a place where they will have no recourse other than to call upon the God of their fathers. ONLY THEN will God hear, remember “His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob“ and send His Son back to deliver His people (Exodus 2:23-3:10).

ONLY THEN — NOT BEFORE — will events pertaining to the restoration of Israel and the healing of the land occur.
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Word Document:  Israel’s Future Restoration by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Israel’s Future Restoration by Arlen Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Faithful and Unfaithful Stewards
That Awaiting Both Faithful and Unfaithful Christians
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?

Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.

Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.

But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My Lord delayeth his coming;

And shall begin to smite his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;

The Lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,

And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 24:45-51).

The parable of the Householder and His servant refers to stewardship in the house during the time of the Lord’s absence, with the coming kingdom in view. This stewardship involves carrying out the Householder’s wishes relative to affairs in the house. The Householder has spoken, and the stewards are to act accordingly during the time of His absence. So far as activities in the house are concerned, the only thing of any moment is that which the Householder has commanded should be carried out by His household stewards during His time of absence.

The one requirement of stewards is “faithfulness” (I Corinthians 4:2). The Householder has left instructions, and every steward in the house is to exercise faithfulness therein, with faithfulness centered in following the instructions left by the Householder prior to His departure.

The parable of the Householder and His servant shows the command given to a steward by the Householder and the end result of both faithfulness and unfaithfulness by the steward to this command. Faithfulness will result in the steward being rewarded, and unfaithfulness will result in the steward being severely chastened.

Something often overlooked in the parable of the Householder and His servant is the fact that there is only one servant in view throughout the parable. This was made clear by the Lord when He gave the same parable on an earlier occasion, as recorded in Luke 12:42-48. He first spoke of a faithful and wise servant (Luke 12:42-44); then He spoke of the same servant becoming unfaithful (Luke 12:45-48):

“And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward [Gk., oikonomos], whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season.

Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.

Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.

But and if that servant say in his heart [the same servant, the previously mentioned steward], my lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;

The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers [‘the unfaithful ones’]” (Luke 12:42-46).

The only difference in the wording of the text in the two accounts is the use of the word “evil” before “servant” in Matthew’s account. In Luke, the text reads, “But and if that servant…” (Luke 12:45); in Matthew, the text reads, “But and if that evil servant…” (Matthew 24:48). The servant in both accounts actually became an evil servant, though the word itself is not used in Luke. Comparing the accounts, both should be understood in the sense of,

“But if that steward, becoming an evil steward, shall…,” or “But if that steward should wickedly say…”

The servant thus, in both accounts of the parable, either exercises faithfulness or he becomes unfaithful. In Matthew 24:45-47 and Luke 12:42-44, the servant remains faithful to the charge left by the Householder, resulting in his being rewarded at the time of the Householder’s return. In Matthew 24:48- 51 and Luke 12:45-48, the same servant becomes unfaithful and begins acting in a manner completely contrary to the charge left by the Householder, resulting in his being severely chastened at the time of the Householder’s return.

Command of the Householder

The Householder’s command to the servant placed over His house was to give those in the house “meat in due season” (Matthew 24:45). “Meat” in Scripture, as distinguished from “milk,” has a peculiar reference to those things pertaining to the Lord’s return and the coming kingdom.

“Meat,” for example, in Hebrews 5:11-14 has to do with Christ exercising the Melchizedek priesthood, a ministry as both King and Priest, reserved for the coming age. In the parable of the Householder and His servant, this is shown by everything in the parable revolving around the Lord’s return, with either reward or chastisement — with the kingdom in view — awaiting the servants.

The purpose for the entire present dispensation has to do with the coming kingdom. The call is presently going forth concerning proffered positions as co-heirs with Christ during the coming age, and the present dispensation covers that period of time when fruit relating to the kingdom will be brought forth by those destined to comprise the co-heirs. The “meat in due season,” not only in the light of related Scripture but in the light of the text itself, would have to consist of those things relating to the Lord’s return and the coming kingdom.

The faithful servant, dispensing “meat in due season,” teaches those placed under his care about the Lord’s return and proffered positions in the kingdom, in view of extracting fruit for his absent Lord. At the time of the Lord’s return, fruit will be in evidence; and not only will the faithful servant be positioned as “ruler [co-heir with Christ in the kingdom],” but through his previous ministry in the house others will be brought into this position as well.

Should the servant become unfaithful, the opposite will be true. He will not teach those placed under his care about the Lord’s return and proffered positions in the kingdom. There will be no fruit; and not only will the unfaithful servant face severe chastisement, but those placed under his care, failing to bring forth fruit (as a direct result of the unfaithful servant’s ministry), will find themselves in similar straits.

The servant in the parable who became unfaithful said in his heart, “My lord delayeth his coming.” He then began to “smite his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunken” (Matthew 24:48-49). The word translated “smite” in the Greek text refers to a blow to the body.

This is the word used in Matthew 27:30 and Luke 22:64 where Christ was smitten on the head and face preceding His crucifixion. The contextual usage of the word in Matthew 24:49 would actually seem to be something similar to what we understand today as a “slap in the face.” The servant’s refusal to give meat in due season would, in this sense, be a slap in the face for those placed under his care (for he, through his actions, completely disregards the reason for his appointed position, which has to do with the spiritual welfare of those whom he is mistreating).

And his eating and drinking with the drunken, contextually (cf. Matthew 24:37-39), would refer to his manner of living becoming patterned after that of the world, completely oblivious to matters relating to the Lord’s return and the coming kingdom.

Reward, Chastisement from the Householder

The reward awaiting the faithful servant is to be positioned as “ruler” over all his Lord’s goods. Those servants brought into this position are referred to elsewhere in Scripture as “joint heirs” or “fellow heirs” (same word in the Greek text [cf. Romans 8:17; Ephesians 3:6]). These are the “many sons” whom Christ is in the process of bringing unto glory (Hebrews 2:10) to exercise the rights of primogeniture during the coming age. These will be those bringing forth fruit during the present dispensation, with a view to their constituting the rulers in the heavenly sphere of the kingdom as co-heirs with Christ during the coming age.

Chastisement awaiting the unfaithful servant will, on the other hand though, be an entirely different matter. The text reads that the Lord, upon His return, “shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites [‘unbelievers’ (lit., ‘unfaithful’) in Luke 12:46]” (Matthew 24:51).

The Greek word translated “shall cut [him] asunder” (dichotomeo) literally means to cut in two, a form of executing criminals in ancient times. The word is used in a metaphorical sense to describe punishment of a severe nature.

It is no small thing to disregard the clear instructions left by the Householder at the time of His departure, for, when He returns, household servants are going to be dealt with on the basis of their actions relative to these provided instructions.

And reward or chastisement will be exactly commensurate with the household servants’ faithfulness or unfaithfulness in the matter.
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Word Document:  Faithful and Unfaithful Stewards by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Faithful and Unfaithful Stewards, That Awaiting Both Faithful and Unfaithful Christians, By Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
The Hope
The God-Provided Encouragement, Motivation
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

According to I Peter 3:15, Christians are to be “ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.” This is called, in introductory verses to the book, “a lively [‘living’] hope”; and it is made possible through “the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (I Peter 1:3). Christ lives, and those “in Christ” are being called to live, beyond resurrection, in glory with Him.

Hope in I Peter is associated with “an inheritance” (I Peter 1:4), a future “salvation” (I Peter 1:5 [“the salvation of your souls”; I Peter 1:9]), and “honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ” (I Peter 1:7; cf. I Peter 4:12-13).

When Christ appears, Christians will appear with Him in glory; and it is different facets of this entire matter — ruling as co-heirs with Christ, realizing the salvation of their souls — concerning which Christians are exhorted to always be ready to provide a response to anyone who asks “for a reason of the hope” which lies within.

In Hebrews 6:11-12, the “hope” to be held by Christians is laid out in a very simple fashion: that “through faith and patience [present]” they would be able to “inherit the promises [future].”

Exercising “faith” is simply believing that which God has to say about a matter, resulting in the person who exercises faith acting accordingly. Hebrews chapter eleven is the great chapter on faith, toward which everything in the preceding part of the book builds:

By faith Abel…By faith Enoch… By faith Noah…By faith Abraham…

Then Hebrews chapter twelve, immediately following, forms the capstone to the whole matter. The fifth and last of the five major warnings comes into view — a direct reference to the rights of the firstborn (all the warnings have to do with these rights, though viewed from different facets of the overall subject) — and Christians are exhorted to run the race set before them after such a fashion that they will one day be accorded the privilege of realizing these rights.

Exercising “patience [lit., ‘patient endurance’]” has to do with the manner in which one runs the race (cf. Hebrews 12:1). This is a race of the faith (I Timothy 6:12; Jude 1:3), to be run continuously for the entire duration of the Christian life. This is a race over the long haul — not one for sprinters, but one for marathon runners (though the runners may be called upon, at times, to sprint in the race). And Christians are to properly pace themselves so that they will be able to victoriously complete the race.

The “inheritance” lying out ahead is the object of a Christians’ hope; and one day realizing that which God has promised is, within the text, to be wrought through patient endurance in the race of the faith. “Faith” and “patient endurance” are inseparably linked after this fashion with the subject at hand — inheriting the promises.

Hebrews 10:23-25 presents a companion thought. In verse twenty-three, Christians are told, “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering [lit., ‘Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering’].” And the whole idea, contextually, behind Christians assembling together today (Hebrews 10:25) is to “consider one another” and “provoke [one another] unto love and to good works,” with this hope in view.

Christians are to assemble together to discuss that which lies out ahead, pray for one another, and exhort one another; and they are to do this “so much the more,” as they “see the day approaching [that coming day when their hope will be realized]” (Hebrews 10:24-25).

This is “that blessed hope” in Titus 2:13, which is to be a purifying hope. And Christians are exhorted to “live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world,” with a view to one day realizing this hope (Titus 2:12).

(“That blessed hope” is not Christ’s return per se [particularly not His return for Christians at the end of this present dispensation, as is often taught]. Rather, “that blessed hope” has to do with “the glorious appearing [lit., ‘the appearing of the glory’] of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ” [Titus 2:13], a glory which will not be revealed until Christ returns at the end of the Tribulation.

The construction of the Greek text would necessitate the previous understanding of the verse. In the Greek text, “the appearing of the glory” is a further explanation and description of “that blessed hope”; also in the Greek text, in the latter part of the verse, the construction of two other parts of the verse is the same: “our Saviour Jesus Christ” is a further explanation and description of “the great God.” 

With this in mind, the verse could be better translated,

Awaiting that blessed hope, which is the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour Who is Jesus Christ.”

And this “hope” surrounds the thought of Christians having a part in Christ’s glory at this time — a central teaching of the Book of Titus.)

With Confidence and Rejoicing

Christians are to hold fast the hope set before them after a revealed two-fold fashion — with confidence and rejoicing (Hebrews 3:6). The word “confidence” is a translation of the Greek word, parresia, meaning “to be bold, courageous, open, or plain” about a matter; and the word “rejoicing” is the translation of the Greek word, kauchema, meaning “to take pride in something,” resulting in the person having “something to boast about.”

Parresia is used a number of times in the New Testament in the sense of being “open” or “plain” about matters, with nothing being hidden. Jesus spoke openly and plainly to His disciples and the people of Israel (Mark 8:32; John 16:29; 18:20), though, because of the nation’s rejection of Him, the day came when He “walked no more openly among the Jews” (John 11:54). And it was because of this same rejection that Jesus had previously begun to teach through the use of parables (Matthew 13:10-15.

Parresia is also used in the New Testament a number of times in the sense of being “bold” or “courageous” about matters. Peter and John, standing before Annas the high priest, and others, exhibited “boldness” as Peter spoke; and those hearing Peter “marvelled,” recognizing that both men exhibited these qualities because “they had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:5-13; cf. Acts 4:31).

Then Paul, at the end of his epistle to the Ephesians, requested prayer on his behalf: “that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel” (Ephesians 6:19).

(Note that the thought of “openness” or “plainness” would also have to be included within the idea conveyed by “boldness” in the preceding passages [cf. II Corinthians 3:12; 7:4; see also Philippians 1:20; I Timothy 3:13; Hebrews 4:16].)

Then the word kauchema (translated “rejoicing”), or the verb form of this word (kauchaomai), is also used a number of times in the New Testament. The word is translated three different ways in Scripture (KJV) — “boast,” “glory [used in the sense of ‘boast’ or ‘pride’],” and “rejoice” (cf. Romans 2:23; 4:2; 5:2; II Corinthians 1:14; 5:12; 9:3).

The thought of “rejoicing” (as in Hebrews 3:6; cf. Philippians 1:26; 2:16), rather than being derived from the meaning of kauchema, appears to be derived more from the result of what this word means. That is, kauchema means “to take pride in something,” resulting in the person having “something to boast about”; and “rejoicing” would emanate out of the person being placed in this position.

Thus, when a Christian is told to be “ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you,” he is to be open about the matter, he is to exhibit plainness of speech, he is to be bold and courageous as he expresses himself, and he is to take pride in the matter, for he has something to boast about.

He has been extended an invitation to ascend the throne with “the King of kings, and Lord of lords” to rule as co-heir with Him in His kingdom. He possesses the hope of having a part in what Scripture calls, “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3), which is the greatest thing God has ever designed for redeemed man.

And this is what Christians are to be open and plain about. They are to tell it exactly as it is, regardless of what others may say or think. And they are to be bold and courageous as they tell it as it is, knowing that they have something of incalculable value, something they can boast about (cf. Matthew 10:32-33; II Timothy 2:10-13).

Firm unto the End

Drawing from the type, everything from the death of the firstborn in Egypt throughout every subsequent experience in which the Israelites were led, occurred for a purpose. And that purpose had to do with the goal of their calling, to be realized in the land of Canaan.

The death of the firstborn, the Red Sea passage, and the wilderness journey with all its experiences occurred with one goal in view. And the Israelites, within every single experience, were to keep their eyes fixed on this one goal.

They were to set their course straight and hold it there, not deviating; and they were to hold their course, after this fashion, “firm unto the end,” allowing them to one day realize the goal of their calling.

And this is exactly what is in view within the Christian experience. Christians, as the Israelites, possess a hope, which has to do with a realization of the goal of their calling in another land. Christians have been saved for this purpose; and every experience in life, beginning at the point of salvation, has this one goal in view.

Christians are to set their course straight and hold it there, not deviating; and they are to hold their course, after this fashion, “firm unto the end” (Hebrews 3:6), allowing them to one day realize the goal of their calling.
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Word Document:  The Hope by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - The Hope, The God-Provided Encouragement, Motivation by Arlen Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

Also see Salutations by Apostle Paul and The Hope of Glory by Mark and Carol Miller for additional commentary on the subject.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Eternal Salvation
What Saith the Scriptures? Man’s Way or God’s Way?
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Not of works, lest any man should boast.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them (Ephesians 2:8-10).

The Church has entered a rather strange era during the past several decades. The clear, simple message of salvation by grace through faith has come under attack, not from without, but from within the ranks of what is looked upon as fundamental Christianity itself; and the distorted message being promulgated, rather than being rejected, is finding ready acceptance.

In essence, individuals are being told that more is required than simple belief. They are being told that a person must go beyond this and make Christ Lord of his life; he must possess what is termed saving faith, a faith which will result in works; a faith which will result in his living after a certain fashion, bringing forth fruit, etc.

And the converse of the preceding is often brought into the picture. Christians are being told that if works do not follow a person’s profession of faith, if that person doesn’t live a certain way, if he doesn’t bring forth fruit, the absence of these things shows that he has never exercised saving faith. That is to say, the person has never really been saved.

Then, usually in connection with the preceding and to further complicate the matter, the expression “easy believism” is being thrown around. Believing on the Lord Jesus Christ is made to be something completely alien to that which Scripture teaches. That is, “believing” is made to be difficult, or the word “believe” is being redefined to make it mean something which it doesn’t mean at all.

Why do these problems exist within the ranks of that segment of Christianity where there should be a clear understanding and proclamation of the message surrounding salvation by grace through faith? The answer is really very simple, though it is an answer involving matters not understood at all by numerous Christians, allowing the problems to exist.

By Grace through Faith

At the outset, before looking at the central problem, note that which Scripture teaches about salvation by grace through faith.

The clear gospel message, the good news, is:

“Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures” (I Corinthians 15:3).

And that which Christ has done on our behalf allows God, through His Spirit, to impart life to unredeemed man, who is “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). It allows God, through His Spirit to breathe life into the one having no life, with the person then passing “from death unto life” (John 5:24).

The Spirit breathes life into lifeless man solely on the basis of that which Christ has done on man’s behalf. And unsaved man can do no more than receive that which has already been done for him. Nothing else enters into the matter.

When Christ referred to His finished work immediately before His death on the Cross, He cried out in “a loud voice” — Tetelestai — one word, which has been translated in the English text, “It is finished” (John 19:30; cf. Matthew 27:50; Mark 15:37; Luke 23:46). Tetelestai is the perfect tense form of the Greek verb, teleo, which means “to bring something to an end or completion.” This word in the perfect tense could be more accurately expressed and translated, “It has been finished,” or “It has been completed.”

That to which Christ referred in John 19:30 was His work of redemption. The perfect tense which He used refers to a work completed in past time, with the results of that work extending into and existing during present time in a finished state. At the moment Christ cried out, announcing that His work had been completed, there was then no reason for His death to be prolonged. The blood of the Passover Lamb had been shed, and God had “laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:5-6, 12; cf. II Corinthians 5:21). 

Thus, at this time, “he bowed his head, and gave up the spirit [lit., comparing the other gospel accounts, ‘He breathed out,’ i.e., He expired, willingly giving up His life]” (John 10:17-18; 19:30). 

Redeemed man has been saved by grace through faith solely on the basis of that which Christ referred to when He cried out from the Cross, “Tetelestai.” The words “are ye saved [lit. ‘you have been saved’]” in Ephesians 2:8 — “For by grace you have been saved…” — are also the translation of a perfect tense in the Greek text. The reference, as tetelestai, is to a work completed in past time, with the results of this work extending into the present and existing in a finished state.

At the moment a person believes on the Lord Jesus Christ (places his trust, reliance in Christ, i.e., receives, by faith, that which Christ has done on his behalf), the Spirit not only breathes life into that person but the Spirit also takes up His abode in the individual (cf. Genesis 1:2b; 2:7; Ezekiel 37:1; I Corinthians 6:19). Through this means, the man passing “from death unto life” becomes a new creation “in Christ,” a part of the one new man (II Corinthians 5:17; Ephesians 2:1, 15).

Redeemed man thus possesses a salvation wherein everything pertaining to works/actions is past. The work necessary to effect one’s salvation (Christ’s work) is past and complete, and the work effecting one’s salvation itself (the Spirit’s work) is past and complete. The latter (the Spirit’s work) is based on the former (Christ’s work). Thus, Divine intervention on man’s behalf is the only work seen throughout.

Relative to one’s presently possessed eternal salvation, redeemed man did nothing in the past, nor can he do anything present or future.

1) Man can do nothing to be saved.

2) Man can do nothing to stay saved.

3) And man can do nothing to show that he has been saved.

Man’s works — before, at the time of, or following salvation — cannot enter into the matter after any fashion. If they could, salvation would cease to be “by grace” (that which God is able to do completely apart from human intervention, merit).

Only Christ’s finished work on the cross can enter into the matter. Salvation was and remains “of the Lord” (Jonah 2:9).

Redeemed man possesses a present, completed salvation based on the past, completed work of Another. Both man’s present salvation and Christ’s past work exist in a finished state, and neither can ever be altered, changed, added to, taken from, etc. One’s salvation is just as complete and secure as the work upon which it rests.

(For Divine intervention throughout the work surrounding man’s presently possessed eternal salvation, along with the corresponding complete absence of any action on man’s part, refer to the unchangeable, foundational type concerning God’s restoration of a ruined creation in the opening verses of Scripture, in Genesis chapter one [ref. the author’s salvation tract, “Lamp Broadcast - As Seen in the Earth’s Restoration.pdf, in pamphlet form designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit..”)

Easy Believism

“Easy Believism” is a rather strange expression, especially when one considers the manner in which it is used today. Scripture presents salvation after one fashion alone — by grace through faith (i.e., through believing) — and no place in Scripture is believing on the Lord Jesus Christ ever presented as something difficult.

Man, in his perversion of the clear teaching of salvation by grace through faith, has sought to make believing difficult; and he has coined the expression, “easy believism,” which, in reality, reflects, in a negative way, on that which Scripture teaches in this realm.

Such is also part and parcel with what has come to be called, “Lordship Salvation.” This expression is actually a misnomer, for, in relation to eternal salvation (the manner in which the expression is used), there can be no such thing as “Lordship Salvation.” Salvation is one thing, and Lordship is another. Christ exercising control over one’s life, as the word “Lordship” portends, can never be used in conjunction with eternal salvation. Such must always be subsequent to one’s salvation experience. 

An unsaved person is “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). He is incapable of making Christ Lord of something which he doesn’t even possess. He must first pass “from death unto life” (John 5:24). Then, and only then, can the matter of “Lordship” enter.

Nor would it be correct to say that unsaved man, in order to be saved, has to believe to the extent that Christ becomes, after some fashion, at the moment of belief or at some subsequent time, Lord of his life. That is, as it is sometimes expressed, “True belief will result in a salvation which cannot be separated from obedience.”

Such a thought would be absurd. Life being brought into existence on the one hand and obedience on the other (the one having been made alive following the leadership of the Lord as He exercises control over that life) are two different things entirely. Both could not possibly be brought to pass at the same time.

Scripturally, spiritual control of one’s life always appears in connection with maturity in the faith, not in connection with initially exercising faith, resulting in salvation. And a Christian may or may not experience spiritual growth in this respect, which can have nothing to do with a prior belief, which allowed him to pass “from death unto life.”

A servant within a household in the world today may or may not submit to his master’s wishes, but such submission has nothing whatsoever to do with his being or not being a servant. It has to do with his being a faithful or an unfaithful servant.

And this is exactly the way Scripture presents the matter. Becoming a servant in the Lord’s house is one thing, but submission as a servant in the house is something entirely different. The latter is always subsequent to — never in connection with — the former.

There is nothing difficult about believing on the Lord Jesus Christ, becoming a Christian, entering into servitude. Grace on God’s part and difficulty on man’s part are incompatibles in the message pertaining to eternal salvation. Difficulty on man’s part arises only after he becomes a Christian, only after he possesses a life in which such difficulty can manifest itself.

How easy is it for an unsaved man to exercise faith, resulting in salvation? It’s just as easy as it was for the Israelites in Egypt during Moses’ day to apply the blood of a slain lamb to the door posts and lintel of the houses in which they dwelled (Exodus 12:3-7); or it’s just as easy as it was for these same Israelites, later in the wilderness, to look upon the brazen serpent which had been raised up on a pole (Numbers 21:5-9).

(Again, refer to the author’s Lamp Broadcast - Salvation Tracts by Arlen Chitwood where each of the preceding is dealt with.)

“Christ our Passover” has been “sacrificed for us” (I Corinthians 5:7), and the blood can be applied through a simple act of faith; or Christ, as the serpent in the wilderness, has been lifted up, “That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:14-15).

How simple and easy is salvation? It was during Moses’ day and remains today, Look and live. It’s that simple and easy.
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Word Document:  Eternal Salvation by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Pamphlet form:  Lamp Broadcast - Eternal Salvation, What Saith the Scriptures? Man’s Way or God’s Way? By Arlen Chitwood.pdf which is SAFE to open and print.  Designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.
Christ’s Millennial & Eternal Rule
Regal Distinctions Between the Millennial Age and the Eternal Ages
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“…Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.

Ask of me, and I will give to thee the heathen [the Gentiles] for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.

Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potters vessel” (Psalm 2:7-9 [7b]).

Christ will rule the nations with “a rod of iron,” and He has promised His co-heirs that they will exercise this power and authority with Him (Psalm 2:9; Revelation 2:26-27; 12:5; 19:15).

Absolute Power and Authority

The words “break them with a rod of iron” rather than “rule them with a rod of iron” (as in Revelation 2:27; 12:5; 19:15) are used in Psalm 2:9. The Hebrew word translated “break” in this passage, contextually, refers to absolute force which will be used to bring and keep the nations under subjection to the “King of kings, and Lord of lords.”

A cognate form of this word appears in Daniel 2:40 where, contextually, the word refers to a similar (but not absolute) force which will be used by Antichrist to bring and keep the nations under subjection to him during the Tribulation.

The words “broken to pieces” and “break in pieces” in Daniel 2:35, 44-45 are the translations of a different word though, which, through comparing Psalm 2:1-9, has to do with the absolute, total destruction of the kingdom of Antichrist by Christ at the end of the Tribulation; and this will be followed by Christ’s absolute control over the nations during the succeeding Messianic Era, when the “great mountain” (Christ’s kingdom) fills “the whole earth” (Daniel 2:35).

The Greek word translated “rule” in Revelation 2:27; 12:5; 19:15 means to shepherd. This is the same word translated “feed [lit., ‘shepherd’ (referring to shepherding the flock of God)]” in Acts 20:28 and I Peter 5:2. The thought behind this word when used in the sense of “rule” can possibly best be seen by its use in Matthew 2:6:

“And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda, for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule [‘shepherd’] my people Israel.”

The Governor, in this respect, will be a Shepherd over the nations; and His co-heirs will exhibit like qualities.

However, this shepherding will be accomplished through absolute force. There will be no such thing as a toleration of disobedience among the Gentile nations in that day (cf. Psalm 101:1-8; Isaiah 66:19-24; Zechariah 14:16-21). The shepherding will be carried out through the use of authority described as “a rod [sceptre] of iron.”

A shepherd in Israel during Old Testament days possessed a wooden staff; but the Chief Shepherd and His co-heirs during that coming day will wield a staff of iron. And with this staff, the Gentile nations, as “the vessels of a potter” when struck, will be “broken to shivers.”

Note that these same words are used relative to both the rule of Christ in Psalm 2:9 and the rule of His co-heirs in Revelation 2:27. The rule by both Christ and His co-heirs will, in this respect, be identical in nature.

Duration of Power and Authority

Scripture teaches that the exercise of governmental power and authority by Christ and His co-heirs will not end when the 1,000-year millennial day has run its course. Rather, the exercise of such power and authority will extend into and last throughout the eternal ages beyond the Millennium. But Scripture does not teach that this rule will continue unchanged into these eternal ages. To the contrary, Scripture teaches just the opposite. The rule by Christ and His co-heirs during the ages beyond the Millennium will be quite different than their rule during the Millennium.

First, there is the matter of Christ’s throne. His throne is eternal, but not as a separate entity from the Father’s throne. Conditions of this nature are millennial only (Hebrews 1:8; Revelation 3:21; 22:3). Christ, with His co-heirs, will reign from His Own throne until He has “put down all rule and all authority and power.” Then, when “all things” have been subjected unto Christ, the kingdom will be delivered up “to God, even the Father,” with all things subjected unto Christ, in order that “God may be all in all [lit., ‘all things in all of these things’]” (I Corinthians 15:24-28). This will occur at the end of the Millennium, and Christ will then assume a position on a central throne with His Father called, “the throne of God and of the Lamb” (Revelation 22:1, 3).

Second, there is the matter of the location of Christ’s throne. During the Millennium, Christ’s throne will be in the new Jerusalem positioned in the heavens above the present earth. During the eternal ages, “the throne of God and of the Lamb” will, likewise, be in the new Jerusalem; but the location of the new Jerusalem will be quite different. The present heavens and earth will be destroyed at the end of the Millennium, and a new heavens and a new earth will be brought into existence.

The new Jerusalem will rest upon the new earth, and God Himself will reside therein, sitting on a throne, with His Son alongside. A rule from the heavens over the earth (millennial) will be a thing of the past, and “the throne of God and of the Lamb” will become the central point in the heavens of an eternal rule extending throughout the universe (cf. II Peter 3:10-13; Revelation 21:1ff).

Third, there is the matter of the manner in which Christ will rule. During the Millennium, Christ and His co-heirs will rule the nations with “a rod of iron”; but a rule after this fashion would be out of place during the eternal ages. During the Millennium, absolute force will be used to bring and keep the nations under subjection; but such will be unnecessary during the eternal ages. Conditions on the new earth will be quite different than millennial conditions on the present earth. There will be no more sin, death, etc. (Revelation 21:3-4); and this will allow for numerous changes in the manner of the administration of governmental affairs.

Satan will be bound in the abyss during the Millennium, but at the conclusion of the Millennium he will be loosed for “a little season [‘short time’].” The rebellion evident among nations during the Millennium, necessitating the rule with “a rod of iron,” will then be brought to a head. The rebel nations will ally with Satan and under his banner march against Christ and His co-heirs in one final, vain, climactic thrust. The entire matter though will be speedily brought to an end through fire “from God out of heaven” (cf. Ezekiel 28:18-19 [18b]).

Satan will then be cast into the lake of fire, the judgment of the unsaved dead from throughout Man’s Day and the Millennium will occur, and the time for major changes will be at hand. At this time the kingdom will be delivered up to the Father, the present heavens and earth will pass out of existence, the new heavens and new earth will come into existence, the new Jerusalem will descend from heaven to rest upon the new earth, and the throne of God and the throne of Christ will become one throne. The nations will then dwell upon the new earth, with God Himself dwelling in their midst.

(God rules from a place in the heavens over the entire universe. Then, provinces throughout His universe are governed by appointed rulers who evidently exercise their delegated power and authority from places in the heavens in relation to the province being ruled [e.g., Satan and his angels presently rule from a place in the heavens in relation to the earth (cf. Daniel 10:13-20; Ephesians 2:2; 6:11, 20)], and this structured rule would evidently be the same relative to provinces ruled by angels elsewhere in the universe [i.e., ruled from places in the heavens in relation to the different provinces]. It is in this manner that “the heavens do rule” [beginning with God, the supreme Ruler over all].

During the Messianic Era, Christ and His bride will exercise delegated power and authority over the earth from the same sphere in which Satan and His angels presently rule [cf. Job 16:15; Revelation 12:7-12]. Then, during the eternal ages, the new earth will be the place in the heavens from whence universal rule will emanate [in the heavens in relation to the entire universe, as God’s present dwelling place is in the heavens in relation to the entire universe].)

1) Crowns, Rewards — Millennial or Eternal

Promises to Christians concerning crowns, rewards, etc. are to be realized during the millennial age rather than during the eternal ages. Many conditions surrounding proffered positions with Christ will not exist during the eternal ages, as noted in previous comments concerning differences in Christ’s reign during the Millennium and during the ages beyond.

(Note, for example, the overcomer’s promises in Revelation chapters two and three. That these promises are millennial only in nature is made plain by several of the promises.

In the overcomer’s promise to the Church in Smyrna, it is evident that death will exist during the Millennium [Revelation 2:11; cf. Romans 8:13]; but this will not be the case beyond the Millennium, during the eternal ages [Revelation 21:4]. In the overcomer’s promise to the Church in Thyatira, ruling with “a rod of iron” is in view [Revelation 2:26-28]. And no such scene as this exists during the present dispensation; nor will such a scene exist during the eternal ages. Then, in the overcomer’s promise to the Church in Laodicea, Christ’s throne is in view. Christ is not seated on His Own throne today; nor will this throne exist separate from the Father’s throne beyond the Millennium [cf. Hebrews 1:13; Revelation 3:21; 22:1, 3].

Thus, it is plain that the things seen in the overcomer’s promises in these two chapters can be realized during the Millennial Era alone. They can have nothing to do with the eternal ages beyond the Millennium.)

This, however, does not at all teach that the reign of Christ and Christians will end at the conclusion of the Millennium. This only shows that their reign during the eternal ages will be outside the scope of the overcomer’s promises and quite different than their reign during the preceding Millennium.

God’s revelation to man concerns itself with “time” — seven thousand years of time — from the creation of Adam to the end of the Messianic Kingdom. Very little is revealed about that which occurred before the creation of Adam, and very little is revealed about that which will occur beyond the Millennium. Scripture does reveal though that the reign of Christ and Christians will continue, and the length of this continuing reign is specifically stated to be “forever and ever [Gk., eis tous aionas ton aionon, ‘with respect to the ages of the ages,’ i.e., ‘throughout the endless ages’]” (Revelation 11:15; 22:3-5).

The activity of Christ and Christians in this continuing reign is not revealed in so many words, but Scripture does present enough information that several observations can be made:

A) Extent of Christ’s Rule

The rule of Christ itself during the eternal ages will no longer be limited to the earth. Rather, it will extend beyond the earth (the new earth), out into the universe.

Christ will be seated upon a throne from which there will be an administration of power and authority throughout the universe (“the throne of God and of the Lamb” [Revelation 22:3]); and the Christians’ continuing rule “with Christ” (Revelation 22:5) would have to be of a like nature, for the power will no longer emanate from Christ’s throne, but from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In this respect, the rule by Christ and His co-heirs over the earth during the Millennium can only be extended to a rule over worlds throughout the universe following the Millennium.

B) Millennial and Eternal Blessings

To what extent though, if any, will rewards realized by overcoming Christians during the Millennium carry over into the eternal ages beyond? The question is really unanswerable.

The wiping away of all tears at the conclusion of the Millennium and the fact that the overcomer’s promises are millennial only in nature would clearly indicate that distinctions which existed during the millennial age between overcoming and non-overcoming Christians will not exist during the eternal ages beyond the Millennium. But, to take matters beyond this point and say that no rewards exercised by overcoming Christians during the millennial age will extend over into the eternal ages beyond the Millennium (or have any bearing on the place which they will occupy beyond the Millennium) would be carrying matters beyond Scriptural grounds. Scripture simply does not deal with the matter.

2) All Things New

The Millennium will not, as many envision, be a time of perfection. Such a state awaits the first of many ages beyond the Millennium. The restoration of all things will occur before the Millennium, at the end of six thousand years of time; but the making of all things new awaits the completion of the Millennium, at the end of seven thousand years of time (cf. Acts 3:21; Revelation 21:5). Only then will a perfect order in all of God’s creation exist.

As the present age (Man’s Day) has a purpose, so will the millennial age (the Lord’s Day); and the ultimate goal of all will be realized in the ages beyond. The rulers for the millennial age are being acquired during the present age; and during the millennial age these rulers will, as co-heirs with Christ, participate in the age-long work of bringing all things under subjection to Christ. Such a work, brought to pass through a rule with “a rod of iron,” anticipates the ages beyond the Millennium, in which a rule with “a rod of iron” will no longer be necessary; and the reason for man’s creation will then be realized in its fullest sense.

Man will not only realize the reason for his creation during the Millennium but also during the eternal ages beyond the Millennium. Dominion will be restricted to this earth during the Millennium, but not so during the eternal ages after the new heavens and new earth have been brought into existence. Man’s rule in that day can only extend into places throughout the universe itself, and man will evidently have access to the universe (something which will not be the case at all during the Millennium).

This appears to be the clear teaching derived from Scriptures touching upon the subject.
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To website CONTENTS Page.
Israel, the Church
God’s Dispensational Dealings with Each
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine” (Isaiah 43:1).

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature [‘creation’]: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (II Corinthians 5:17).

Near the end of the past dispensation, God interrupted His dealings with Israel seven years short of the dispensation being completed, set Israel aside, and called an entirely new nation into existence.

This new nation is NOT Jewish; NOR is this new nation Gentile. Rather, this new nation is comprised of believing Jews and believing Gentiles who have become new creations “in Christ” (II Corinthians 5:17); and these new creations “in Christ” — saved Jews and saved Gentiles TOGETHER — form ONE NEW MAN (Ephesians 2:11-15).

(Note in the preceding respect that there are three separate and distinct creations in the human race today — Jew, Gentile, and the Church of God [I Corinthians 10:32].

From Adam to Jacob — during time covering slightly over two millenniums — there was only one creation. Then God took Abraham’s grandson, Jacob, and formed a separate creation [Isaiah 43:1].

The descendants of Jacob through his twelve sons, later referred to as Jews, were then seen as separate and distinct from the remainder of the human race, referred to following this time as Gentiles [i.e., by definition, someone who was not a Jew, not a descendant of Jacob and his progeny through his twelve sons].

From Jacob to Christ — almost two more millenniums — the human race was divided into these two distinct creations.

Then, following Christ’s crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension, an entirely new creation was brought into existence, COMPLETELY SEPARATE from either of the prior two creations — either the Jews or the Gentiles.

On the day of Pentecost, 33 A.D., this new creation, which was NEITHER Jew nor Gentile, but A NEW CREATION “in Christ,” was brought into existence.

Then, beyond this point, to the present time, three separate and distinct creations have existed in the human race — Jew, Gentile, and the Church of God [the one new man “in Christ”].)

During the present dispensation, God is dealing with this new man, NOT with Israel. And this new man — referred to as a nation (Gk., ethnos, “ethnic group”; cf. Matthew 21:43; I Peter 2:9-10) — is exactly as Scripture describes.

It is a nation completely separate from all other nations on earth — separate from either Israel or the Gentile nations (Galatians 3:26-29). And God has set aside an entire dispensation in which He will deal solely with this new man.

In the preceding respect, there is absolutely NO PLACE in Christendom for distinctions to be made between saved Jews and saved Gentiles. Both are new creations “in Christ,” part of the one new man, wherein distinctions between those comprising this new man DO NOT and CANNOT EXIST (Galatians 3:26-29; Ephesians 2:11-15; 3:1-6).

But in Christendom today, completely contrary to Scripture, certain individuals from both groups (from saved Jews, and from saved Gentiles) attempt to form distinctions between these two groups.

For example:

There are congregations of saved Jews calling themselves “Messianic Jews” or “completed Jews” (both misnomers), attempting to distinguish themselves from saved Gentiles (an impossibility).

And there are groups comprised of saved Gentiles who look askance at saved Jews, somewhat forcing these saved Jews to meet together in separate places, often referred to as “Messianic congregations.”

ALL of this — by saved Jews or by saved Gentiles — forms no more than vain attempts to build up a middle wall which has been broken down by Christ Himself (Ephesians 2:14).

And, as well, there is absolutely NO PLACE in Christendom for the new creation “in Christ” to go back to the old creation in Jacob (cf. Isaiah 43:1, 7; II Corinthians 5:17) and attempt to bring things from this old creation over into the new (cf. Matthew 9:16-17). God has set Israel aside for a dispensation; and He is, today, dealing with the one new man “in Christ,” NOT with Israel.

And for those comprising this new man — whether saved Jews or saved Gentiles — to go back to Israel (a nation set aside) and bring things having to do with this nation over into things having to do with the one new man (the Law, robes, forms, ceremonies, etc.) is not only completely out of place but it serves to break down distinctions which God established between the two creations, adding to an already existing confusion.

(All of these type things CAN ONLY result in little more than a mixture of Judiasm and paganism [which Judiasm becomes through this means] with an affected Christian atmosphere.

And efforts of so-called Messianic groups [saved Jews meeting together] trying this type thing CAN ONLY produce the same end results.

Either way the matter is viewed, an attempt is being made to mix things having to do with two completely separate creations — e.g., the use of old wineskins to hold new wine [Matthew 9:11; Mark 2:22] — and, from a Biblical standpoint, any attempt to do so WILL ALWAYS result in only one thing — a complete sham.)

God is simply NOT dealing with Israel today. Israel has been set aside, and God is presently dealing with the one new man (saved Jews and saved Gentiles, alike, where NO distinction exists), with the focus in ONE CENTRAL REALM.

The Spirit of God is in the world today searching for a bride for God’s Son, with the search being conducted among those comprising the one new man (Genesis 24; ref. the author’s article, “Lamp Broadcast - The Complete Story Told in Genesis 22-25.pdf”).

And once the Spirit has completed this work, the one new man will be removed, with a view to this new man being dealt with in relation to the reason he had been called into existence.

Then God will resume His dealings with Israel (during seven unfulfilled years of the past dispensation, completing not only the Jewish dispensation [stopped at the time of Christ’s crucifixion, seven years short of completion] but Daniel’s unfulfilled Seventieth Week and Man’s Day as well).

God’s dealings with both Israel and the Church (the new nation, the one new man “in Christ”) MUST be kept separate and distinct from one another. To have God dealing with either Israel during the present dispensation or the Church once God resumes His dealings with Israel is COMPLETELY FOREIGN to the way in which Scripture sets forth God’s dispensational dealings with man.

As previously seen, the one new man — comprised of those “in Christ,” ALL Christians — will be removed at the end of the present dispensation. And this will be for reasons surrounding two nations — both the one new man and Israel.

God will complete His dealings with one nation (the one new man), in the heavens, in relation to this nation’s calling; and God will then complete His dealings with the other nation (Israel), on the earth, in relation to this nation’s calling.

The former nation possesses a heavenly calling and the latter an earthly calling (after having forfeited the heavenly); and it is only fitting that God will complete His dealings with each in the place to which they have been called.

The preceding is the clear teaching seen in both the Old Testament types and the New Testament antitypes.

Biblical distinctions surrounding both Israel and the Church MUST be maintained throughout, and Scripture MUST be allowed to speak for itself in that which has been revealed about both.
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To website CONTENTS Page.
Binding & Loosing
That Bound, Shall Have Already Been Bound
That Loosed, Shall Have Already Been Loosed
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of the heavens: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (Matthew 16:19).

(To properly understand what is meant by binding and loosing in Matthew 16:19, also Matthew 18:18, angelic activity in relation to the Lord’s activity, of necessity, must be understood first.

Thus, the first part of this pamphlet will be taken up with angelic activity in the preceding respect, laying a foundation, allowing Matthew 16:19 to then be properly understood.)

Throughout Scripture angels are seen as far more active in the Lord’s affairs, as they pertain to man, than many realize. Scripture often refers to the Lord acting in a particular realm, while also referring to angels acting in this same realm.

In this respect, though angels are the executors, it is the Lord Who is looked upon in a foremost sense as bringing the matter to pass. That is, the Lord assigns and empowers certain angels for particular tasks; and once these tasks are carried out, the matter is looked upon as being done by the Lord Himself.

Angelic Activity — Binding, Loosing

Possibly two of the most instructive instances of the preceding can be seen in the destruction of the cities of the plain during the days of Abraham in Genesis 18; 19 and the removal of Nebuchadnezzar from his throne for seven years during the days of Daniel in Daniel 4:1ff. Also, comparing these two instances provides an insight into heavenly angelic courts which God has established (apparently alluded to in Matthew 5:22 through a reference to corresponding earthly courts) and the power with which angels acting in these courts on His behalf have been vested.

In the Book of Daniel, Nebuchadnezzar, because of his ascribing to himself that which belonged to God alone (cf. Daniel 4:17, 30), was removed from the throne and driven into the field to eat grass as the oxen. The entire matter — judicial issues and determinations, the passing of the sentence, and the execution of the sentence — was carried out by angels, though the “most High [God Himself]” was specifically said to be the One Who brought the matter to pass.

Nebuchadnezzar had been delivered into the charge of angels called “watchers,” who had made certain decisions which resulted in a decree concerning him; and these decisions, resulting in the decree, were also ascribed to the “most High” (Daniel 4:17, 24).

The “decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones” (Daniel 4:17) can only point to angelic activity in heavenly courts concerning matters relating to individuals on earth. It seems apparent that the angels in this passage possessed a specially imparted wisdom and knowledge, allowing them to act within the scope of fixed laws to fulfill the perfect will of God concerning particular matters, apart from any immediate command from God. In so doing, the actions of these angels were looked upon as actions of the Lord Himself.

(Undoubtedly the same thing is in view in Daniel chapter five where decisions were made and a decree was issued concerning Belshazzar. Note that Belshazzar was reminded of a time in Nebuchadnezzar’s life when similar action had to be taken for similar reasons [Daniel 5:18-23].

The days of Belshazzar’s kingdom were at an end; he had been weighed in the balances and found wanting, and his kingdom, apparently within the scope of decisions and determinations made by angels in the heavenly courts, had been divided and given to the Medes and the Persians [Daniel 5:24-31].)

Understanding the working of these heavenly courts, the same thing can be seen in Genesis chapters eighteen and nineteen. The Lord, accompanied by two angels, appeared to Abraham in the plains of Mamre. The purpose of this visit concerned the impending destruction of the cities in the Jordan plain. Comparing this section in Genesis with Daniel chapter four, it would appear clear that judicial decisions concerning these cities had already been made in the heavenly courts; and the “decree of the watchers” had already been rendered (cf. Genesis 18:17-22).

The Lord remained with Abraham, and the two angels accompanying the Lord went on down into the Jordan plain to carry out the previously rendered decree. Everything relating to the destruction of these cities was apparently done by angels.

In the light of Daniel 4, it would appear clear that angels were the ones who had made the decisions and rendered the decree; and the Genesis account clearly shows that angels were the executors of the decree.

However, the same thing can be said of the Lord (cf. Genesis 18:20-33; 19:11-13, 16, 24, 29).

It is the same as in Daniel chapter four. Angelic activity in this realm — because of their ability to act within the scope of fixed laws, God’s perfect will — is looked upon as being done by the Lord Himself.

Angelic activity in the heavenly courts, as it pertains to those upon the earth, will evidently be carried out in a climactic sense and on an intensified basis during the Tribulation. Immediately preceding Christ’s return, during the Tribulation, angels will be very instrumental in carrying out decrees through executing judgment upon the earth-dwellers; and their actions will be looked upon as those of the Lord Himself (Revelation 6:12-17; 8:1ff; 9:1ff; 11:18; 15:1; 16:1ff).

Not only will this be the case, but angelic activity of the same nature will carry over into events surrounding Christ’s presence upon earth following the Tribulation. When Christ returns to the earth at the end of the Tribulation, He will be accompanied by an innumerable host of angels who will be instrumental in executing His will and purpose in matters which must be brought to pass preceding His reign.

In Matthew 13:49-50, angels are said to perform some of the same activity at the end of the age which Christ is said to perform in Matthew 25:32ff. Immediately preceding this, angels will have regathered Israel (Matthew 24:31), but elsewhere in Scripture it is the Lord Who regathers His people (Deuteronomy 30:1-4; Isaiah 11:10-11; Jeremiah 23:7-8).

Angels will apparently be very active in all matters when Christ returns. The Lord being accompanied by angels at the time of His return points simply to continued angelic activity of a like nature to that which has occurred throughout the whole of Man’s Day.

Human Activity — Binding, Loosing

Note that the same principle seen in angelic activity, associating their actions with the Lord’s actions, exists in connection with the proclaimed Word among God’s people (Israel past and future, the Church present).

This could perhaps best be seen in Christ’s words to Peter in Matthew 16:19, repeated in another setting to all of the disciples later in Matthew 18:18:

“Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

This statement to Peter in Matthew 16:19 (which grew out of his confession concerning Christ’s true identity [Matthew 16:16]), along with the same statement to all the disciples at a later time, has not been understood at all by numerous Christians down through the years. But there is really nothing difficult about that being taught, though a translation problem does exist, and a corrected translation helps to understand Christ’s statement in the light of angelic activity in heavenly courts, as previously discussed.

The translation problem involves the way in which the Greek verbs and participles in the verse (“bind” and “loose”) are handled in the English text. The binding and loosing here on earth are present aorist subjunctives, and the binding and loosing in the heavens are perfect passive participles (same in both Matthew 16:19 and Matthew 18:18).

To show this — the aorist subjunctive verbs and the perfect passive participles — the translation should read somewhat along these lines:

“…whatsoever you might bind on earth shall have already been bound in the heavens: and whatsoever you might loose on earth shall have already been loosed in the heavens.”

The subjunctive mood shows that which is probable, that expected, though it may not occur. And the perfect tense shows that completed in past time, existing in a finished state during present time.

Those forming the Church (future at that time) are in view in both passages (Matthew 16:18; 18:17). And when those in the Church act in complete accord with that being dealt with in these verses, their actions — exactly as the actions of angels acting under fixed laws in the heavenly courts — will be seen as having already been acted upon in the heavens.

In short, with the perfect tense being used in the manner in which it is used (a perfect passive), the actions of those in the Church on earth are seen as having already been acted upon in the heavens before those in the Church even act (“bind” and “loose” are simply two words used to express these actions, both on earth and in the heavens).

Now, what is this all about? Can Christians in a Church just come to a conclusion on which they all agree and have that conclusion already be decided in the heavens? That’s not exactly the way matters exist, no more so than angels in the heavenly courts can do the same and have their actions seen as the Lord’s actions.

Angels in the heavenly courts, in order to have their actions seen as those of the Lord, must act under fixed laws; and Christians in the Church today, in order to have their actions seen as having already been performed in the heavens, must do the same. They must act in complete accord with the revealed Word (exactly as Peter acted in Matthew 16:16).

Remaining completely within the scope of the proclaimed Word, that bound or loosed on earth will be seen as having already been bound or loosed in the heavens. This cannot help but be the case, for God must remain true to His Word.

“The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times” [Psalm 12:6].

“Forever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven” [Psalm 119:89].

“…thou hast magnified thy word above thy name [lit., ‘…You have exalted above all things Your Word and Your Name’ (Psalm 138:2b)].”

“To the law, and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).

“In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God.

The same was in the beginning with God…

And the word was made flesh, and dwelt among us…” (John 1:1-2, 14a).

It is this unchangeable Word (inseparably associated with the entire Godhead) which is to be proclaimed (II Timothy 4:2); and it is this unchangeable Word alone which Christians are to adhere to and follow in all matters.

And when this is done, that stated in Matthew 16:19; 18:18 can’t help but be the case in the actions of Christians here on earth (during present time) and in corresponding actions in the heavens (during all past, present, and future time).
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To website CONTENTS Page.
At Midnight
A Terminal Hour, Judgment, a New Beginning
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“And Moses said, Thus saith the Lord, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt:

And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die…

And it came to pass, that at midnight the Lord smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt…” (Exodus 11:4-5; 12:29a [5a]).

Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee, and get thee down to the floor [the threshing floor]…

And she went down unto the floor…

And it came to pass at midnight…” (Ruth 3:3, 6, 8a [3a, 6a]).

“And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the Bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him” (Matthew 25:6).

The first reference to “midnight” in Scripture is in Exodus 11:4, and it is associated with God’s judgment occurring at a terminal time, with a new beginning in view (the death of the firstborn, followed by the Exodus). And the use of “midnight” after this fashion, at this point in Scripture, establishes a first-mention principle which never changes throughout Scripture.

That is, as established at this point in Scripture, anytime the word “midnight” is subsequently used throughout Scripture — as in Ruth 3:8 or Matthew 25:6 — there is a direct allusion to God’s judgment occurring at a terminal time, with a new beginning in view.

The original, basic framework for the whole of the matter is seen in the opening thirty-four verses of Scripture (Genesis 1:1-2:3) — having to do with God’s restoration of a ruined creation over six days time, followed by a seventh day rest — seen within a septenary structure of Scripture at the very beginning.

(Refer to the first three chapters in the author’s book, The Study of Scripture, in this site, for information on different facets of the preceding.)

Attention is called to this opening framework and structure of Scripture because of the references used at the beginning of this pamphlet to three different places where the word “midnight” appears in Scripture (Exodus 11:4; 12:29; Ruth 3:8; Matthew 25:6).

The first appearance, in Exodus, relates to that foreshadowed by God’s restorative work on day one (Genesis 1:2-5 [2b]). And the appearances in Ruth and Matthew relate to that foreshadowed by God’s restorative work on days two through six (Genesis 1:6-31). Then, that foreshadowed by God’s restorative work throughout all six days is with a view to that foreshadowed by the seventh day of rest (Genesis 2:1-3).

That being introduced at the beginning of Scripture and dealt with in the preceding manner has to do with salvation past, present, and future.

The past aspect of salvation (salvation by grace, having to do with the spirit) is foreshadowed by God’s restorative work on day one and is seen typified by the events in Exodus 11; 12.

The present aspect of salvation (the saving of the soul, the life) is foreshadowed by God’s restorative activity on days two through six and is seen in typical form in Ruth chapter three and in parabolic form in Matthew chapter twenty-five.

And, again, the whole of the matter is with a view to the future, deliverance (salvation) in the seventh day.

Thus, the thought of “midnight,” seen in all three portions of Scripture referenced, has to do with a terminal time at the end of that foreshadowed by the six days (6,000 years, Man’s Day); and this is with a view to a new beginning, foreshadowed by the seventh day (1,000 years, the Lord’s Day).

(Thoughts on basics from the preceding will show what is wrong with much of the one-sided teaching pertaining to the complete panorama of salvation as seen in Christendom today [God’s work restoring ruined man — past and present works, with a view to the future]. Man, invariably, begins at the wrong place. Man, invariably, begins somewhere in the N.T., not where God began, in the opening verses of Genesis.

And the correct beginning point — Genesis — would be true for studying any Biblical doctrine, which is the main reason why things, from a doctrinal standpoint, are so fouled up in Christendom today.

If man wants to get it right, he must begin where God began and stay with the way God has stated matters.)

God’s Past and Future Judgments

“Midnight” in relation to that seen in Exodus 11; 12, originally dealt with through God’s work on day one in Genesis chapter one — the Spirit of God moved, God spake, and light came into existence — as will be shown, has to do with a past judgment, followed by a new beginning. And everything is performed through a Divine work, completely apart from man’s actions.

(Ruined man (dead in trespasses and sins) is no more in a position to bring himself out of his ruined state than the earth on day one in the first chapter of Genesis was in a position to bring itself out of its ruined state.)

As well, there is no such thing as a future judgment of man in relation to that part of God’s restorative work originally foreshadowed in Genesis 1:2-5 [2b]. There is a present work, performed by the Spirit breathing life into the one having no life, based on a past Divine work (God, in the person of His Son, paying the price which He required at Calvary). But all judgment connected with this initial part of God’s restorative work is past.

God has already judged sin in the person of His Son. And this would relate to those whom the Spirit has presently breathed life into and those whom He has not breathed life into. There is no difference in this respect, for, as previously stated, all judgment pertaining to the matter is past.

Note how John 3:18 reads in this respect:

“He that believeth on him is not condemned [‘judged’]: but he that believeth not is condemned [‘judged’] already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

There is simply no such thing as any man, whether saved or unsaved, appearing at a future judgment where his eternal salvation will be an issue. That would be impossible, for God has already judged the whole of mankind, both the saved and the unsaved, pertaining to the matter.

Future judgments of both saved and unsaved man will result in God carrying out that already determined in His past judgment on sin. But, again, man simply cannot be brought into judgment at some future time pertaining to that for which he has already been judged.

Note how this is seen in the type in Exodus 12. Exactly as at Calvary, almost fifteen centuries later, God judged sin through the death and shed blood of the paschal lambs. The Lord passing through the land of Egypt at midnight had to do with judgment in another respect entirely. It had to do with a carrying out of the decree pertaining to a past judgment, based on the death and proper application of the blood of the paschal lambs.

For the one who had followed the Lord’s instructions (the blood of a dead lamb had been applied to the door posts and lintel, showing that the firstborn in the family had died in a substitute), the Lord passed over that house. All judgment was past, and no present execution of judgment remained. The firstborn had already died.

But for the one who had not followed the Lord’s instructions (the blood of a dead lamb had not been applied to the door posts and lintel, showing that the firstborn in the family had not died in a substitute), the Lord executed the past judgment upon the firstborn in a personal manner. The firstborn had not yet died; consequently, he paid the penalty himself, apart from a substitute.

Thus, the first mention of “midnight” in Scripture is connected with judgment, though dealt with concerning the execution of previous judgment. And, following this thought throughout Scripture, the same basic thing is seen relative to Christians in the type in Ruth 3 and the parable in Matthew 25.

Judgment and the execution of that judgment are so inseparably related though that the word for “judgment” (Gk., krisis) is used throughout. Thus, drawing a fine line through the use or non-use of the word “judgment” really can’t be done, for, again, this word is used throughout. And the context would have to be the determining factor as to how the word is being used.

God’s Present and Future Judgments

There is a present judgment for sin, inseparably connected with a future judgment. And, as seen in the previous section, dealing with past and future judgments for sin, the matter is the same. The former (past and present judgments) is just that — judgment in both instances. But the latter (future judgments) is an execution or reckoning of that already judged, though still seen and referred to as “judgment” throughout Scripture.

At that future time, all sin, in actuality, will have been judged in the past. And that judged in the past cannot somehow be re-judged in the future.

That already judged in the previous section had to do with Christ’s finished work at Calvary. Both the saved and the unsaved, believers and non-believers, have already been judged relative to this finished work.

And exactly the same thing can be seen relative to Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat — a ministry solely for Christians.

In Genesis 1:2-5 [2b], when the Spirit of God moved, God spoke, and light came into existence, the light didn’t replace or do away with the darkness. Rather, God placed the light alongside the darkness, leaving the darkness entirely alone.

In the words of John 1:5 and II Corinthians 4:6, the light shined out of the darkness, with the darkness having no comprehension or understanding of the light. The two are completely incompatible.

Both saved and unsaved man have that foreshadowed by darkness (the old sin nature), but only saved man has that foreshadowed by light (a new, God-imparted nature). And, because the darkness, the old nature, remains with saved man, he can easily be led into following this nature if he takes his eyes off that associated with the new nature.

And Christ is presently ministering in the heavenly sanctuary, providing a present cleansing for Christians because of this very problem. This is what is seen in John 13 when Christ girded Himself, took a basin of water and began to wash the disciples’ feet. Or this is what is seen throughout John’s first epistle.

There is a present judgment for sin in the preceding respect. And if a Christian judges himself during the present time (I Corinthians 11:31), he will not be judged yet future (Romans 8:1).

In that future day when Christians appear before the judgment seat of Christ, judgment, in one respect, will all be past — whether judgment which occurred at Calvary, or judgment which occurred in the heavenly sanctuary, at the mercy seat. In this respect, the judgment seat of Christ will be an execution or reckoning of that already judged, though referred to in a judgmental respect as well.

And when will this occur?

Ruth appeared on Boaz’s threshing floor at midnight, but in a cleansed manner (Ruth 3:3, 6, 8). Thus, no judgment awaited her, only a carrying out of particular matters (redemption of the inheritance, and marriage).

In the parable of the ten virgins, the Bridegroom came at midnight. Five, as Ruth, were prepared for the things which were to occur (the marriage festivities); the other five though were not prepared.

And all were dealt with accordingly.

“Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 25:13).
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To website CONTENTS Page.
The Sons of Noah
The Sons of Noah
God’s Separation and Placement of the Nations
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Part I of II

“And the sons of Noah, that went forth out of the ark, were Shem, and Ham, and Japheth: and Ham is the father of Canaan.

These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread” (Genesis 9:18-19).

Adam was the first man, and through Adam’s sin as the federal head of the human race, death (the result of sin) passed upon all of Adam’s descendants, upon all mankind (Romans 5:12).

During Noah’s day, 1,656 years later, God, by means of the Flood (for revealed reasons), destroyed the entire human race descending from Adam, save eight individuals — Noah, his wife, Noah’s three sons, and their wives (Genesis 6:1ff). And a new beginning with a new federal headship for the human race is then seen in Noah’s three sons (Genesis 9:18-19).

Through the progeny of these three sons, the earth would be re-populated. And as everyone is a descendant of Adam, everyone is likewise a descendant of one of Noah’s three sons. One is either a descendant of Shem, or Ham, or Japheth.

And certain things stated about each of these three sons within Noah’s three prophecies (Genesis 9:25-27) would mark each son, along with their descendants, from the time that these prophecies were uttered to the end of Man’s Day (reffollowing SN Part II ).

Within the prophecies concerning Noah’s three sons, God dealt with one son, one man, relative to the problem previously created by one man’s disobedience, more than sixteen centuries earlier — the problem of sin, resulting in death. And God dealt with this matter where federal headship in the human race was once again involved.

God singled out Shem as the only son with a God. And through the greater Son of Shem — through the lineage of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob — over 2,300 years later, God, for the final time, would again deal with the sin problem through one Man. The problem this time though would be dealt with and settled — through the second Man, the last Adam, based on His finished work at Calvary.

But dropping back to Noah’s day and the three prophecies concerning his sons, one can move forward from that point through the genealogies in chapter ten and see that which God brought to pass, over time, as Noah’s three sons and their progeny began to re-populate the earth. This chapter has to do with a placement of the nations descending from Noah’s three sons, God’s purpose for placing the nations in their particular location on earth, and how God brought the whole of the matter to pass.

The Tower of Babel

Events seen in the first part of Genesis 11 form additional commentary on events previously seen in Genesis 10. One of the ways God separated mankind in chapter ten was by different languages, and chapter eleven provides the origin of and reason for these different languages.

In chapter eleven, man, following the Flood, migrated eastward (ref. ASV, NASB, NIV) from the area where the ark had come to rest, settling in “a plain in the land of Shinar.” And those settling in this plain spoke only one language (Genesis 11:1).

In this plain, Nimrod built four cities, forming a “kingdom.” And those in the plain, in one of these cities — Babel — sought to form a centralized national existence through building a tower and making a name for themselves, lest they be “scattered abroad upon the face of the earth” (Genesis 10:10; 11:2-4, 9).

But the Lord came down to view the matter. And because of that which could result, the Lord “confounded their language” (gave them different languages) so that they couldn’t understand one another. Then the Lord “scattered them abroad…upon the face of all the earth” (Genesis 11:5-8).

God’s Separation of the Nations

In chapter ten God provides genealogies of Noah’s three sons, with each genealogy going through a number of generations. And the names of the descendants of each son, through these generations, are given — names which today, from history, can be associated with people dwelling in a particular part of the earth.

At the time God dealt with man at Babel, in the land of Shinar, He separated individuals in a nationalistic sense through several means.

First, each group of individuals was given a particular language, unknown to any of the other groups. They were then driven out and given a particular land on the earth, a land of their own which was separate from the land of any of the others (Genesis 10:5, 20, 32).

Second, at some point after each group was separated from all the other groups and in their own land, God divided the earth itself, separating one land mass from another land mass. (Genesis 10:25).

There are two different words in the Hebrew text translated “divide” in chapter ten. One word is used in verses five and thirty-two (having to do with a separation of mankind by languages, along with their being placed in different lands); and the other word is used in verse twenty-five, having to do with a separation or division of the earth itself.

How did God separate or divide the earth into segments? The evident answer is seen in Job 38:25, where the same word translated “divide” in Genesis 10:25 is used relative to a separation by water.

Once God had separated all the different nations and placed them in their own lands, He then “divided” the earth. He could only have separated land masses, forming separate land masses, separate continents, etc. And this separation can evidently be seen one place today by viewing a map of the east coast of South America and the west coast of Africa. The shape of each gives the appearance that at one time in the distant past they were one continent, then separated. And they give that appearance because this is evidently what occurred, not only here but worldwide.

How did natives on islands out in the Pacific Ocean get there? How did the American Indian get to the North American continent, the Aborigine to Australia, etc.? The answer is simple. And the answer is not in the book, Kon Tiki, or in a frozen Bering Strait. Rather, the answer is in the Bible. These individuals’ ancestors were already on these land masses when the earth was divided by oceans and seas during the days of Peleg, over one hundred years after the Flood.

The general separation of the sons of Noah, as determined by the names in the three lineages in Genesis chapter ten, was across three parts of the earth. The descendants of Japheth were spread across the northern parts of the earth, the descendants of Shem across the central parts, and the descendants of Ham across the southern parts. This separation, of course, is general. There are numerous exceptions.

God’s Purpose for Separating the Nations

Other than that stated in Genesis 11:6, what does Scripture have to say about God’s purpose for a separation of the nations, as seen in chapter ten?

God’s purpose, along with another way in which He divided the nations, is given elsewhere in Scripture.

Note Deuteronomy 32:8:

“When the Most High divided to 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 Israel.”

Then note Acts 17:26-27:

“And hath made of one blood [one man, Adam] all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed and the bounds of their habitation;

That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us.”

One of the reasons God called Israel into existence was to be His witness to the Gentile nations throughout the earth, “that all the people of the earth may know that the Lord is God, and that there is none else” (I Kings 8:59-60; Isaiah 43:9-10).

God separated the nations and set their bounds within separate lands “according to the number of the children of Israel”; and God did this in order that those in these nations “should seek the Lord…and find him” (Deuteronomy 32:8; Acts 17:27).

In short, God separated the nations and placed them within certain boundaries; and God did this according to “the number” of individuals forming the one nation which He would later call into existence and commission to reach all of the Gentile nations with the message of the one true and living God (note that Israel’s existence at this time lay hundreds of years in the future).

And any attempt by well-meaning man to change or alter God’s plans relative to Israel and the nations — i.e., do away with national boundaries, unify the languages, bring the nations together as one nation again, etc. — is nothing less than an attempt to bring back into existence, after some form or fashion, that which God destroyed in Genesis chapter eleven. And within such a process, man, as well, would be subverting God’s established evangelistic program for the nations (cf. Jonah 1:1-3; 2:9; 3:1-3; John 4:22).

Further, man subverting God’s established plan relative to Israel and the nations in this manner would only help set the stage for the one-world system which is rapidly coming into fruition today and will shortly come into full fruition under the last king of Babylon, Satan’s Messiah, the Antichrist.

Under the Antichrist, a form of that seen through man’s past feeble efforts at the unification of all mankind at the tower of Babel in Genesis chapter eleven will exist once again. And in that day, God, in the person of His Son, is going to come down to see this end-time tower of Babel; and God is not going to think any more of it in that future day than He thought of it in days following the Flood during Noah’s day.

God destroyed it then, and He will destroy it yet future.

Lamp Broadcast - The Sons of Noah by Arlen L. Chitwood, Part I.pdf in pamphlet form designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.  
The Sons of Noah
Noah’s Prophecies Concerning His Sons
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Part II of II

“And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard.

And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.

And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw [lit., ‘gazed with satisfaction upon’] the nakedness of his father, and told [lit., ‘told with delight’] his two brethren without…

And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.

And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.

And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.

God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant” (Genesis 9:20-22, 24-27).

Noah’s three prophecies concerning His sons (Shem, Ham, and Japheth) in Genesis chapter nine are prophecies having to do with the nations of the earth. These prophecies, as evident by their contextual setting and content — dealing with a new beginning in the human race, necessitating all-inclusiveness — have to do with federal headship and the prophetic destinies of races comprising nations, with the prophecies in this respect not limited to the three individuals in the prophecies but to their descendants as well (Genesis 9:18-19; 10:1-32).

These are not prophecies which lend themselves after any fashion to racism, to racist-type teachings, as some attempt to deal with them. And because these prophecies have been used in a perverted manner to teach and foster racism, people often either shy away from them or make them to be something completely alien to that seen in the text.

The prophecy that is often singled out and made to be a racist issue rather than a national issue is the first of the three prophecies — having to do with Noah’s curse of Ham’s son (Canaan), who, since Noah cursed this son alone, was apparently the only son that Ham had at this time, a time shortly after the Flood (Genesis 9:22). And Noah cursing Ham’s only son (cursing Ham’s seed) provided the necessary headship and all-inclusiveness to the matter.

(Sons shown in a list in Genesis chapters five through eleven are listed in the reverse order of their birth [e.g., see Genesis 5:32; 11:26, where this can be shown from other Scriptures (cf. Genesis 5:32; 7:11; 10:21; 11:10, 26, 32; 12:4)]; Canaan is listed last among the four sons of Ham in Genesis 10:6, showing that he was Ham’s firstborn, probably born on the ark during the Flood [cf. Genesis 9:18, 22].)

Beginning at the proper place with the introductory prophecy — which is the prophecy forming the problem area for many — the remaining two prophecies can be easily and naturally dealt with, for the first prophecy is referred to in each of the succeeding two prophecies, with all three forming an inseparable unit.

In the first prophecy, How long was the curse to last? Does the curse involve only one of Ham’s sons? Is the curse still in effect today? Questions of this nature are what people attempt to deal with (or, in many cases, attempt to avoid), often committing mayhem in Biblical interpretation in the process.

There is a solution though:

Simply allow Scripture to address the issue rather than follow the usually inserted humanistic reasoning.

Does Scripture really address the issue in this type completeness? Certainly it does! Do you think that God, through Noah, would pronounce a curse upon an individual where the federal headship and prophetic destinies of the nations are in view and not let man know the extent of and how long this curse would last, or not let man know the extent of and how long other things in the prophecies concerning Shem and Japheth would last?

Answers to questions pertaining to the matter are very simple to ascertain.

The curse is seen in verse twenty-five.

“Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren” (Genesis 9:25).

The curse is then referenced in verse twenty-six in connection with something said about Shem, and it is referenced again in verse twenty-seven in connection with two things said about Japheth.

Now, some questions:

How long will that stated about Shem in the first part of verse twenty-six (which is immediately followed by a reference to the curse from v. 25) remain in effect?

“Blessed be the Lord God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant” (Genesis 9:26).

As well, how long will that stated about Japheth in the first part of verse twenty-seven (which is immediately followed by a reference to the curse from v. 25) remain in effect?

“God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant” (Genesis 9:27).

The answers to both questions would be the same. If a person brings matters from the time that these prophecies were given down into modern times, he will see that both prophecies have remained in effect since Noah’s day, with God continuing to work matters out relative to these prophecies today.

The descendants of Shem (in the line later revealed to go through Abraham’s lineage through Isaac and Jacob) continue today as the only nation with a God (e.g., Exodus 3:6; Psalm 72:18; 96:5; Ephesians 2:11-12).

Japheth is still being enlarged, with his descendants presently covering a large part of the globe. And the descendants of Japheth (and Ham as well) have had to dwell in the tents of Shemi.e., go to the descendants of the only son with a God — throughout this time if they were to receive spiritual blessings.

All of these things are established, undeniable facts.

Now, what about the length of the servitude of Ham’s descendants within Noah’s prophecies concerning all three sons? The Spirit of God, through Moses, was very careful to place a statement concerning the servitude of Ham’s progeny alongside both of Noah’s prophecies concerning his other two sons, Shem and Japheth, forming an inseparable connection between the things stated about all three of these sons.

The prophecies concerning both Shem and Japheth extend into modern times through their lineages. By what rule of Scriptural interpretation could something different be said about the prophecy pertaining to the lineage of Noah’s other son, Ham? Seeing something different in this respect would be impossible.

That stated about all three sons must exist together and extend throughout the same time during Man’s Day. A symmetrical connection between all three prophecies must be recognized.

If one part of the three prophecies is still being worked out, then all things within the three prophecies must be included, with all things still being worked out. Because of the manner in which the prophecies were given and are structured, there is no way to get around this and say or think anything different.

If all of Ham’s seed is not seen in the preceding continuing respect, then Scripture has three connected prophecies dealing with the federal headship and destinies of nations in the human race throughout Man’s Day in which any continuing reference to a part of the human race is absent. That, as well, would be impossible.

Then, to understand the all-inclusive nature of the curse pronounced upon Ham’s lineage, note that all three prophecies begin in an all-inclusive manner — with Shem, Ham, Japheth, and their progenies. And though the prophecy in Shem’s case was later revealed to narrow to only part of his seed (Abraham, through Isaac and Jacob), that is not seen within the lineages of Ham and Japheth.

These are prophecies pertaining to the whole of mankind from the time that they were uttered throughout the remainder of Man’s Day.

(Note also why Noah cursed Canaan instead of Ham, though Ham’s act had brought about the curse. Ham was among those whom God had previously blessed [Genesis 9:1]. Thus, Noah couldn’t curse Ham. He did the only thing that he could have done — curse Ham’s son [Ham’s seed], where the curse would end up anyway.)

People are afraid to deal with this prophecy in the preceding respect though because they are afraid of being linked with racism. However, racism is not even remotely connected with issues emanating from any of these prophecies. This is something which man has brought over into the matter.

If an individual sees these prophecies for exactly what they are — prophecies concerning federal headship and the prophetic destinies of the nations — problems won’t exist. But if an individual begins misusing this section of Scripture, along with attempting to understand matters from the standpoint of humanistic reasoning, that individual will invariably fail to even begin to understand the prophecies, often causing major problems, along with leading others astray.

The thought that God would pronounce a curse through Noah on a segment of the human race which would last for millenniums is objectionable to the modern mind, mainly because of issues emanating out of man bringing racism into the matter, along with the associated political correctness of the day.

But are God’s previous curses in Genesis 3 — resulting from Satan’s actions and Adam’s sin — objectionable? After all, they have been around much longer and are far more extensive. The entire human race, along with the earth and Satan, are involved in these curses; and these curses still exist today and are still presently being worked out.

As God is presently working out matters pertaining to the curses which He established in Genesis chapter three, He, as well, is presently working out matters pertaining to the curse which He established in Genesis chapter nine. And God needs no help from man in either instance.

Simply leave the whole of the matter in His hands, and He will work out the whole of that which He has established in His way, in His time (cf. Zechariah 14:21; Acts 3:20-21).
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Lamp Broadcast - The Sons of Noah by Arlen L. Chitwood, Part II.pdf in pamphlet form designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

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Jude, Acts of the Apostates
A Study about the Prophesied Spiritual Condition of the Church at the Time of Christ’s Return
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Jude is a book dealing with apostasy. More specifically, Jude is a book dealing with Christians caught up in apostasy, detailing the course and nature of this apostasy, along with the end result.

We’re living very near the close of the present dispensation, during the time when the Laodicean period of Church history is rapidly nearing completion.

Throughout the remainder of this dispensation, according to Scripture, there can ONLY be a further deterioration of existing conditions. And the ONLY recourse which Christians have to avoid being engulfed, to some degree, in this departure from the faith is a knowledge of the Word of God.

There will be NO great awakening, great revival, in Christendom during days ahead. Rather, deteriorating conditions will only intensify during the closing days of the dispensation.

And the end result of this deterioration — COMPLETE apostasy, resulting from the working of the leaven which the woman placed in the three measures of meal (Matthew 13:33) — will mark conditions throughout Christendom as the dispensation is brought to a close.

Jude, as all of the other New Testament epistles, deals with the salvation of the soul. And the special and particular emphasis in Jude is upon an ever-intensifying deterioration — apostasy — relative to correct Biblical teaching pertaining to THIS proffered salvation, NOT relative to salvation by grace or relative to Biblical doctrine in general.

And correctly understanding Jude 1:3, in the preceding respect, is foundational to a correct understanding of the book as a whole:

“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”

Go wrong here, and you will be wrong the rest of the way; BUT, correctly understand this verse, and…
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Book: JUDE BOOK in this site.

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  Message in the Gospels, Acts, Epistles
A Central Message Continuing from the Old Testament and A Study about the End of Angelic Rule and the Beginning of Man’s Rule in the Kingdom, as Seen in the Gospels, Acts, and Epistles
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Salvation by grace through faith, contrary to much popular teaching and belief, is NOT the central message dealt with throughout the New Testament — NOT in the Gospels, NOT in Acts, NOT in the Epistles. NOR is this the central message dealt with throughout the Old Testament. NOR does any single book, Old Testament or New Testament, deal with this message in a central respect.

John’s gospel and Romans are two books often dealt with as centering around salvation by grace. But NEITHER book is structured in this manner. John’s gospel, in this respect, is NO DIFFERENT than any one of the other gospels; and Romans, in this respect, is NO DIFFERENT than any one of the other epistles.

The SAME central message pervades ALL Scripture.

The first man, the first Adam, near the beginning of Scripture, was created to replace the incumbent ruler in the kingdom associated with one province in God’s universal kingdom — the earth (Genesis 1:26-28).

And the second Man, the last Adam, near the end of Scripture, is seen returning back to this earth to take this kingdom from this same ruler (Revelation 11:15).

And all that lies between these two points, separated by almost the whole of Scripture and 6,000 years of time, has to do with a restoration of those from the lineage of the first Adam so that they can realize an inheritance with the last Adam when He takes the kingdom, realizing the purpose for man’s creation in the beginning.

Salvation by grace DOES NOT, in and of itself, automatically move man back into the position which he occupied prior to the fall. Rather, salvation by grace places him in a position where he CAN one day find himself completely free from sin, enswathed in Glory, and seated on the throne with the second Man, the last Adam.

And though Scripture, as seen throughout, opens at the only beginning point possible — salvation by grace through faith — Scripture NEVER remains at this point. Rather, Scripture moves on and concerns itself FAR, FAR more with present and future aspects of salvation/deliverance than with the past aspect.

And the preceding is what can be seen throughout the different chapters of this book.
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Book: From Acts to the Epistles BOOK in this site.

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“Never Again!” or “Yes, Again!”
The Prophets Have Spoken! 
A Study about That Future Day when God Once Again Steps in and Deals with the Jewish People, Resulting in “Jacob,” the Natural Man — “in the Way of Thy Judgments” — Becoming “Israel,” the Spiritual Man. 
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

This book succinctly covers the complete history of Israel, with time spent more specifically on events during modern times — from the WWII Holocaust to those of the present day and time.

The book then continues from this point, calling attention to that which Scripture has to say about the future for Israel and the nations, not only in the Middle East but worldwide.

God, in time past, because of the Jewish people’s continued disobedience, extending over centuries of time, uprooted His people from their land and drove them out among the nations to effect repentance through persecution at the hands of the Gentiles.

And, out among the nations, the Jewish people possessed/possess a promise concerning restoration (seen numerous places in Scripture):

WHEN repentance is forthcoming, God will hear from heaven and act in complete accord with His promise, restoring a healed people to a healed land (cf. Exodus 1:8; 2:23-25; 3:1ff; Leviticus 26:14-42; II Chronicles 6:24-27; 7:12-14).

UNTIL repentance is forthcoming, God will NOT act in this respect. God, relative to restoring a healed people to a healed land, will act ONLY AFTER His purpose for uprooting them from their land and driving them out among the nations has been realized. God’s Word is crystal clear on this matter.

BUT, the “Jewish people,” during modern times, have returned to their land in unbelief, prior to repentance, prior to their conversion, and while the house still lies “desolate” (Exodus 12:1ff; Daniel 9:24-27; Matthew 23:37-39). They have re-entered a house which Christ left “empty, swept, and garnished” (Matthew 12:43-45).

In this respect, WHY has God allowed an unrepentant and unconverted Israeli nation to re-enter a house which His Son left “desolate,” left “empty, swept, and garnished”?

And WHAT are the ramifications of the Jewish people re-entering this house, re-entering their land, under existing conditions?

The preceding is what this book is about — not what man may think, but what Scripture has to say.
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