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The Bride in Genesis BOOK
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast
FOREWORD

Man was created for a specific purpose, revealed at the time of his creation.  Immediately following the restoration of the ruined earth (Genesis 1:2-25 [2b]) — a ruin resulting from Satan’s previous aspirations to “be like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezekiel 28:14-19) — God not only announced the creation of man (an entirely new entity in the universe) but the reason for man’s creation as well:

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion [Hebrew: radah, ‘rule’] over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.

Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion [Hebrew: radah, ‘rule’] over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26-28)

Man, created in God’s image, after God’s likeness, was created to rule the restored domain.  He was created to rule the domain in the stead of the incumbent ruler, Satan, along with his angels (Genesis 1:26-28).

And man was not to rule this restored domain alone.  The woman — who had been created in the man, removed from the man after the man had been put to sleep, formed into “an helpmeet” for the man (who would be his wife), and then presented back to the man (Genesis 2:18-22) — was to rule with the man (Genesis 1:27-28).

The woman, who was bone of man’s bones, and flesh of his flesh (Genesis 2:23), had to rule with the man.  The woman, because she was a part of the man’s very being, completed the man; and the man could not rule as an incomplete being.

The man and the woman ruling together — the king, with his consort queen — formed one complete being on the throne.  Both had to rule together in this respect, else there could be no rule.

This is a principle surrounding the purpose for man’s creation, having to do with the manner in which man was to rule, which God established at the time of man’s creation.  And this principle cannot be violated. 

Understanding this principle will shed light upon numerous things seen in the opening three chapters of Genesis.  Why did Adam, though not deceived, partake of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil following Eve partaking of this tree?  The answer is the same as the reason why Christ, who knew no sin, was made “sin for us” when He found His bride in the same condition in which Adam found Eve (Genesis 3:6; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Timothy 2:14).

Adam could not rule apart from Eve; and Eve, following the time when she had eaten of the forbidden fruit, was no longer in a position to rule with Adam.  Thus, Adam could not have fulfilled the purpose for his creation had he not acted exactly as he did.  Adam acted with a view to Eve’s redemption, in order that he, as a complete being (Adam, with Eve), might one day fulfill the purpose for man's creation.

Nor can the second Man, the last Adam, rule apart from a wife.  He, as the “first Adam,” found His bride in a fallen state.  And He acted in complete accord with the established type, with a view to exactly the same thing seen in the type.  He who knew no sin was made “sin for us,” with a view to both He and a redeemed wife one day taking the scepter and ascending the throne together.

This book, The Bride in Genesis, deals with the various ramifications of this whole overall thought, drawn from different parts of the book of Genesis. And if man would properly understand that which God has revealed on the subject, he must begin where God began and view the matter from the perspective in which God established this relationship in the beginning, as set forth in His unchangeable Word.
INTRODUCTION

Types and Antitypes

Then He said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!

Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?”

And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. (Luke 24:25-27)

Jesus, revealing Himself to the two disciples on the Emmaus road following His resurrection, used one means alone.  He simply called their attention to the Word of God, opening the Scriptures to their understanding.

Jesus began with Moses and progressed to the other prophets, revealing “to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:27).  And later that day, when He broke bread in their presence — because of His having previously revealed Himself through the Scriptures — “their eyes were opened” (Luke 24:28-31).

The clear statement is made that all of the Old Testament Scriptures are about the person and work of Christ.  The Old Testament Scriptures form one continuous revelation concerning that which God, not man, has to say about the matter; and God has provided this revelation of His Son by structuring His Word after a particular fashion.

The Old Testament Scriptures not only provide an account of true history, but, through this history, these Scriptures also provide an account of all the various facets of the person and work of God’s Son — past, present, and future.  And the latter has been accomplished by God structuring Old Testament history after such a fashion that this history is highly typical in nature.

The Old Testament scriptures form the beginning point.  This is where God set the matter forth first.  And, accordingly, any correct study surrounding anything that God has revealed about His Son — which would include everything in Scripture (Colossians 1:15-19), for He is the Word made Flesh (John 1:1-2, 14) — must begin where God began with the matter.  Such a study must begin in the Old Testament with Moses.

And, not only must such a study begin in the Old Testament, but these Old Testament Scriptures must be viewed after a certain fashion.  They must be viewed after the fashion in which they were written.  They must be viewed after the fashion in which God structured Old Testament history, after a typical fashion.  Only by so doing can man come into a correct understanding of that which God has revealed.

Place and Importance of Types

Typology is the great unexplored mine in the Old Testament.  Studying the types will open the door to an inexhaustible wealth of information that God has provided, information necessary to properly understand God’s revelation to man.  On the other hand, it goes without saying that ignoring the types, as so many have done, will produce the opposite result and leave this door closed.

Note Paul’s statement concerning this matter in his first epistle to the Christians in Corinth:

Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples [Gk., tupoi, ‘types’] and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world [Gk., aionon, ‘ages’] are come”  (1 Corinthians 10:11; cf. 1 Corinthians 10:6)

1 Corinthians 10:11 draws from a context (1 Corinthians 10:1-10) that refers to the history of Israel, extending from events immediately following the death of the firstborn in Egypt to the overthrow of an entire accountable generation in the wilderness, save Caleb and Joshua (Exodus 12-Deuteronomy 34).

However, the thought of events occurring as types in 1 Corinthians 10:11 must, of necessity, encompass a much larger scope than this one segment in the history of Israel, which it does.  Christ’s statements in Luke 24:25-27, 44; John 5:45-47, along with the evident structure of Old Testament history, leave no room to question the fact that all of Old Testament history must be viewed as highly typical.

Old Testament typology begins, not with the death of the firstborn in Exodus 12, but with the account of the creation of the heavens and the earth in the first verse of Genesis 1.  Biblical typology begins at the point where biblical history begins.

God, in the beginning, created the heavens and the earth.  And at a later point in time, the creation, because of an act of Satan, was reduced to a ruin.  Then, at a still later point in time, God set about to restore this ruined creation over a six-day period.  And He created man on the sixth day, following the completion of the restoration of the ruined material creation.  God then rested on the seventh day (Genesis 1:1-2:3).

This entire account in the opening verses of Genesis is fraught with significance and meaning.  The account has not only been arranged in a typical fashion but, within this typical fashion, it has been set in a septenary structure as well.  The entire 7,000-year history of man can be seen in these verses through the manner in which God structured His Word at the very outset.  Beginning with the creation of the heavens and the earth, the whole of that which God revealed throughout all subsequent Scripture can be seen in four parts:

1)  Creation (Genesis 1:1).
2)  Ruin (Genesis 1:2a).
3)  Restoration (Genesis 1:2-25 [2b]).
4)  Rest (Genesis 2:1-3).

(This typical account, with its septenary structure [Genesis 1:1-2:3], actually forms the foundation upon which the whole of subsequent Scripture rests.  And all subsequent Scripture, seen in its true light in this respect, merely forms a commentary on that revealed at the beginning, in Genesis 1:1-2:3 [ref., the author’s book, in this site, The Study of Scripture BOOK, chapters 1-4].)

In Genesis 3, the original type of the coming Redeemer is set forth in the act of Adam after Eve had sinned.  Adam partook of that which was associated with sin (fruit from the same tree that Eve had partaken of, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil) in order to bring about Eve’s redemption; and this was done with a view to both Adam and Eve one day being able to partake of the tree of life together.

The second Man, the last Adam, Christ, was made “sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21; cf. Romans 5:14; 1 Corinthians 15:45).  And, in complete accord with the types, this, as well, was done with a view to Christ and His bride one day being able to partake of the tree of life together.

Then Genesis 4, providing additional commentary on that which is revealed in chapter three, sets forth the death of Abel at the hands of Cain; and this forms a type of the death of Christ at the hands of Israel.

Genesis 5-9 set forth the generations of Adam, followed by the Noachian Flood, with a new beginning following the Flood.  Two individuals stand out prominently in the latter part of the genealogical record:  Enoch, the seventh from Adam; and Noah, the tenth from Adam.

(“Seven” and “ten” are numbers that Scripture uses to show completeness.  “Seven” shows the completeness of that which is in view [used as God’s number in this respect], and “ten” shows numerical completeness.)

Enoch, at the end of one complete period of time, was removed from the earth before the Flood.  Noah, at the end of another complete period of time, was left on the earth to pass through the Flood.

“The Flood” is a type of the coming Tribulation.  “Enoch” typifies the one new man “in Christ” (comprised of all Christians), who will be removed at the end of the present dispensation, at the end of one complete period of time.  And “Noah” typifies the nation of Israel, which will be left on the earth to pass safely through the Tribulation, “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7) — completing the last seven years of the previous dispensation, at the end of another complete period of time, with a new beginning, the Messianic Era, to follow.

Genesis, as well, is the book in which we are first introduced to Melchizedek, a king-priest in Jerusalem (Genesis 14:18-20).  And Melchizedek typifies Christ in His coming glory as the great King-Priest in Jerusalem (Psalm 110:1ff; Hebrews 5-7).

It is in Genesis that we find Scripture forming detailed dispensational structures, as previously seen in chapter five through nine.  Another such structure — covering events extending from the birth of Christ to the Messianic Kingdom — can be seen in Genesis 21-25 (dealt with in chapter 2 of this book).

And Genesis is the book that contains one of the most complete overall types of Christ to be found in the Old Testament — the life of Joseph, beginning in Genesis 37 (dealt with in chapters 4-6 of this book).

“No one, I suppose, who has ever thought upon it, can doubt that this history [that of Joseph] is typical”. ~ Andrew Jukes

Note Jesus’ statement, followed by Luke’s comment, after Jesus had suddenly appeared in the midst of His disciples in His resurrection body:

Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”

And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. (Luke 24:44-45).

During His earthly ministry, Jesus often drew from the Old Testament to teach spiritual lessons concerning Himself.  He drew from things surrounding the tabernacle, and from various experiences of the Israelites:  “I am the door” (John 10:7, 9); “I am the bread of life” (John 6:35, 48-51); “I am the light of the world” (John 9:5).  Jesus told Nicodemus that the serpent lifted up in the wilderness foreshadowed that which was about to happen to the Son of Man, who must also be lifted up (John 3:14).  In response to the scribes and Pharisees request for a sign, Jesus declared that the experiences of Jonah foreshadowed things that He would experience (Matthew 12:38-41).  Note also His reference to Solomon in this same passage (Matthew 12:42).

Referring to conditions that would prevail upon the earth immediately before His return, Jesus called the disciples’ attention to the days of Noah and the days of Lot (Luke 17:26-32).  Events during the days of these two men typify events that are presently beginning to occur on earth, events that will come to full fruition immediately preceding Christ’s return.

Then, during the latter part of His ministry Jesus taught by parables.  And many things in these parables can be properly understood only in the light of the Old Testament types and symbols.

John the Baptizer referred to the position that Christ occupied in relation to an Old Testament type when he said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29).  Paul spoke of this same truth when he declared Christ to be “our Passover” (1 Corinthians 5:7).

The writer of Hebrews derived the major portion of the teachings in his book from Old Testament typology, and this book cannot be properly understood apart from viewing material in the book in a type-antitype framework.

Hebrews 3; 4 are built around the wilderness journey of the Israelites.  And the key to a correct interpretation and understanding of the passage in Hebrews that gives so many a problem, Hebrews 6:4-6, is to be found by contextually paralleling that which is stated in the passage with a type-antitype treatment of chapters three and four. 

In Hebrews 5; 6; 7 Melchizedek is mentioned nine times; and, in the light of that which is revealed about Melchizedek in the Old Testament, the things stated about Melchizedek in these chapters can only be Messianic in their scope of fulfillment (cf. Genesis 14:18-19; Psalm 110:1-4).

In Hebrews 8; 9; 10 the tabernacle with its Levitical priesthood and sacrificial system is said to be a “pattern” (Greek: tupos, type [Hebrews 8:5]).  And in Hebrews 11; 12, numerous Old Testament individuals who typify some aspect of the work of the triune Godhead in the history of Israel or in the life of the Christian are set forth.

Extent and Purpose of Types

The extent of types in the Old Testament would have to be classed as inexhaustible.  Many times a complete type can be found in a single verse; other times complete types can be found in several verses taken together, or in an entire chapter; and other times complete types can be found in several chapters taken together, or in an entire book viewed as a whole.  No portion of Old Testament history can be placed outside the scope of biblical typology.  Events in the Old Testament are true history that are fraught with types and meaning.

The Old Testament is written in such a manner that God has interwoven prophetic types into historic events.  No proper study of either the Old or New Testaments can ignore types and antitypes.  Accordingly, a basic value of any Bible commentary, particularly one dealing with Old Testament history, would have to be that commentary’s treatment of types and antitypes.  The reason for this is very simple:  The Old Testament is highly typical.  The New Testament is simply the Old revealed.  Thus, within the biblical framework of correctly teaching and understanding the Word of God, types and antitypes MUST occupy a prominent place.

Jesus said,

You search the Scriptures . . . these are they which testify of Me . . .

For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me. (John 5:39, 46; cf. John 1:45)

The Scriptures to which Jesus referred in verse thirty-nine were the Old Testament Scriptures.  Not a single book of the New Testament had been written at this time.  Man’s failure to understand the extent and purpose of types in the Old Testament stems from his failure to heed the words of Jesus:  “Search the scriptures [the Old Testament Scriptures] . . .these are they which testify of Me.”

The word for “search” in the Greek text implies a close examination, a thorough search, and the word is used in this passage in the sense of a hunter stalking game, who directs all his attention to marks that will lead to the quarry.  An individual searching the Scriptures in this manner will fix all his attention on the Scriptures, closely examining and thoroughly searching every aspect of this revelation.  The folly of those who refuse to dwell deeply in the Word can immediately be seen.  Such Christians are not only robbing themselves of great spiritual blessings, but, if occupying teaching positions, they are also robbing others of these same blessings.

When Jesus met the two disciples on the road to Emmaus following His resurrection, He reprimanded them for not believing ALL that the Prophets had written.  And, as previously seen, He then began at “Moses and ALL the prophets,” and “expounded unto them in ALL the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:25-27).

The specific statement is made in Luke 24:27 that ALL of the Old Testament Scriptures are about Christ.  If one has a mind for the things of God, according to this verse, he can turn to any portion of the Old Testament and study about Christ.  ALL of the Old Testament Scriptures — beginning with Moses — constitute a complete revelation of Jesus Christ.  The record of creation, all subsequent events, and all individuals, together, form the complete Old Testament revelation that God gave to man concerning all the various facets of the person and work of His Son.

The Son was with the Father in the beginning.  Apart from Him not one thing that presently exists came into existence.  Or, for that matter, neither does it continue to exist (cf. Genesis 1:1; John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17).  The entire Old Testament — Genesis through Malachi — is about Him.  Then, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us . . . .” (John 1:14a).  From that point, the New Testament continues to be a revelation of God’s Son. 

And the last book in the Bible — the book of Revelation, the Revelation of Jesus Christ — is the capstone of all previous revelation, arranging in final and complete form the summation of all things that were previously revealed, beginning with “Moses and all the prophets.”

When the late Dr. M. R. DeHaan, near the close of his ministry, began to study and arrange material for a series of radio messages, entitled, Portraits of Christ, he was amazed by what he found.  In the introduction to a book that was later published from this series, entitled, Portraits of Christ in Genesis, Dr. DeHaan states:

“At first the publication of a book entitled ‘Portraits of Christ’ was intended to be a study of portraits of Christ in the entire Bible.  However, as I began to collect material, I realized what a hopeless task I was undertaking, and so I next limited it to portraits of Christ in the Old Testament.  Again, I had not gone very far when I realized that this too was a Herculean task which could hardly be done in one volume, or even many volumes.  As a result, it was shortened to ‘Portraits of Christ in the Pentateuch,’ the books of Moses.  Then, finally, after completing but one chapter, I realized that I could not even begin to discuss thoroughly the portraits of Christ in the first book of the Bible alone, the book of Genesis.

After many years of Bible study, I was amazed at the volume of material and subject matter in the book of Genesis alone, which was the revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The last book of the Bible opens with ‘the Revelation of Jesus Christ,’ and this may well be taken to be the title of the entire Bible, from the very first verse of Genesis, chapter one, until the close of the book of Revelation.  It is one continuous, progressive revelation concerning the Altogether Lovely One, the Son of God, and the Son of Man.”

Fundamentals of Types

A basic, fundamental rule to remember about types is the rule of “first mention.”  The first time a type is recorded in Scripture the pattern is set.  Once the pattern is set, no change can ever occur.  Later types will add information and cast additional light on the original type, but the original was set perfect at the beginning and remains unchanged throughout Scripture.

Another fundamental rule to remember about types is in the area of “doctrine.”  It is often taught that types are given merely for illustrations, and doctrine cannot be taught from types.  Suffice it to say, types are far more than mere illustrations, and in the area of doctrine it would be well to ask a question, followed by a statement:  “Who said doctrine cannot be taught from types?  Certainly not the Scriptures!”

(“Doctrine” and “teaching” are translations of noun and verb forms of the same word in the Greek text — didaskalia and didasko.  “Teaching” is “doctrine”; “doctrine” is “teaching.”  And if “teaching” cannot be drawn from the types, of what value are the types?

One overall thought though should suffice to quell any ideology that doctrine/teaching cannot be drawn from the types:  Who made [designed] the type?  And who made [designed] the antitype?

Doctrine/teaching can be drawn from either or from both together.  Because of the very nature of the origin of both — through God’s sovereign control of all things — there can be absolutely no difference between the two in this respect.  Both could only have been designed and put together with the same perfection that exists within the Godhead.

The types form a part of the Word that was made Flesh.  To see imperfection in the types is to see imperfection in the Word made Flesh; to see perfection in the Word made Flesh is to see perfection in the types.)

Types and antitypes are exact replicas of one another.  The antitype is an exact imprint or duplicate of the type.  The tabernacle was formed in exact detail, in every respect, to an existing tabernacle in heaven, “according to the pattern [Greek: tupos]” given to Moses in the mount (Hebrews 8:5).  The “print [Greek: tupos] of the nails” in the hands of Christ were exact imprints of the nails that had been driven into His hands (John 20:25).  The truth about biblical doctrine/teaching and types is that since the antitype is an exact imprint or duplicate of the type, doctrine/teaching can be derived from either.  No distinction, one from the other, can be made in this respect.

Another fundamental rule to remember is that types, contrary to common belief, “DO NOT break down.”  To say that types break down is to say that types are imperfect.  God established the types, and He established these types perfectly.  Types break down only in the minds of finite man.  If a man knew all there were to know about any particular type, that type could be followed to its nth degree and never break down.

NOTHING happened in a haphazard manner in the Old Testament.  EVERYTHING occurred according to a divine plan, established before the creation of the heavens and the earth (Hebrews 1:3; Ephesians 3:11).  And events throughout the Old Testament happened as “types” in order that God might have these events and experiences of individuals to draw upon, allowing the Spirit of God to use these events and experiences to instruct Christians in the deep things of God.

Types are as accurate as mathematics.” ~F. B. Meyer
Chapter One
Adam and Eve

Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned.

For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come. (Romans 5:12-14)

The account of Adam and Eve in Genesis 1-3 provides not only the one true account of man’s beginning, but this account also provides the original type of Christ and His bride.  God has interwoven great spiritual lessons into the account of man’s historic beginning, reflecting upon the person and work of His Son.

Adam was the first man upon the earth.  He was also a type of Christ, the second Man, the last Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45-47).  The experiences of Adam and Eve prefigure the experiences of Christ and His bride.  The basic principles relating to the formation of the bride and the redemptive work of the Son in relation to the bride are set forth in these chapters and remain unchanged throughout Scripture.

Formation of the Bride

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 

And the LORD God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”   

And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place.

Then the rib that the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. (Genesis 1:27; 2:18, 21-22)

1)  Out of the Body

Eve was created in Adam at the very beginning, but was not brought into existence as a separate entity until a later point in time.  Adam was put to sleep, his side opened, and from this opened side God took one of his ribs and formed Eve.  Eve was taken out of Adam and then presented back to Adam for a “helper.”  Eve was a part of the very being of Adam; and, resultantly, separate from Eve, Adam was incomplete.  In this respect, Eve, being presented back to Adam for a “helper,” completed Adam and provided completeness for Eve as well.  And, in the highest sense, God looked upon the existing union as “one flesh” (Genesis 2:21-24).

The bride of Christ has existed in the Son from eternity.  The bride’s existence and salvation date from “before the foundation of the world” (Ephesians 1:4; Revelation 13:8).  The bride, however, could not be brought into existence as a separate entity until after the Son had been put to sleep and His side opened.

This occurred at Calvary.  The Son was put to sleep (the Son died), and His side was opened.  And “blood” and “water” flowed forth out of this opened side — the two elements necessary to bring into existence the bride, separate from the body, but still part of the body (John 19:34).

Once the complete, redeemed bride has been brought into existence through the means that God has provided, the bride will be presented back to the Son, completing the Son and providing completeness for the bride as well (Hebrews 2:10).  And, in the highest sense, God will look upon the existing union as “one flesh” (Ephesians 5:26-32).

God’s past work having to do with bringing Eve into existence and His present work (to be completed in the future) having to do with bringing His Son’s bride into existence must be studied in the light of one another.  In Genesis 2:22 God took a rib from Adam’s side and “made into a woman.”  The Hebrew word translated “made” in this verse is banah, which means, “to build.”  As previously seen, Eve was created in Adam at the beginning, later taken out of Adam, built into a bride, and then presented back to Adam.

In Matthew 16:18 Christ said, “. . . on this rock I will build My Church.”  The Church (in the sense in which the word is used in Matthew 16:18), created in Christ from eternity, is presently being called out of the body and built into a bride.  And the time when this process will be completed and the bride presented back to the Son lies in the future.

(The word “Church” comes from a compound Greek word [ekklesia], which means, “called out” [ek, ‘out’; klesis, ‘to call’]  And this word is used in the New Testament more than one way.  It is used during the present dispensation relative to all of the saved [e.g., Revelation 2; 3], for the bride has yet to be singled out and set apart from the remainder of the saved.

That is to say, the bride, though presently being “called out” of the “called,” has yet to be set apart as a separate entity.  However, looking beyond this present dispensation [following that time when the bride will have been set apart in the preceding manner], the use of the word ekklesia becomes more restrictive in the way that the matter is looked upon in the New Testament [cf. Hebrews 12:23].

Referring to time beyond the present dispensation, the word ekklesia is used relative to those who will be placed as firstborn sons, adopted [“adoption” (Greek: huiothesia) means son-placing] — placed in a position to rule and to reign [adopted into, placed in a “firstborn” position].  Within the human realm, firstborn sons alone can rule [for more information on the preceding, refer to the author’s book, in this site, God’s Firstborn Sons BOOK].

And these sons, looked upon in another respect, will rule as consort queen with God’s Son, Jesus.  These will be the ones who, in accord with Genesis chapter two, will be removed from Christ’s body, forming the bride of the second Man, the last Adam.

The “called out” being removed from the “called” comprises that which is in view through Paul’s reference to an “out-resurrection” in Philippians 3:11 [“resurrection,” KJV; Greek: exanastasis, “out-resurrection”].  The word exanastasis is a compound Greek word that literally means “to stand up out of.”  The word has to do with a smaller group standing up out of a larger group — the “called out” being removed from the “called.”  And this will result from issues and determinations emanating from the judgment seat.

Remaining within the future scope of the matter and the exact meaning of the word ekklesia [called out], the clear teaching of Scripture attests to the fact that those who will form the Church in that coming day are not those presently being removed from the world.  Those taken from the world are the “called.”  All Christians are “called,” removed from the world.  But not all Christians will be among the “called out,” which will be taken from the called, the saved, the body, forming the Church as it will be viewed yet future.

In the preceding respect, the Church in that coming day will be the body of Christ [cf. Colossians 1:18] in the same sense that Eve was the body of Adam.  She was bone of his bones, and flesh of his flesh [Genesis 2:23].  ALL of Eve was of Adam’s body, but she was not ALL of Adam’s body.  “For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones” [Ephesians 5:30].  ALL of the bride will be of Christ’s body, but not ALL of His body.

For additional information on both the out-resurrection and the called and the called out, refer toin this site, The Tree of Life and The Out-Resurrection and The Tree of Life.)

Thus, contrary to that which is commonly believed and taught in Christendom, the bride — in either the type or the antitype — does not constitute all of the body.  Just as Eve was taken out of Adam’s body, the bride of Christ will be taken out of the Son’s body.  The entire body over which He is the Head consists of all the saved during this present dispensation.  But the bride consists of a smaller group that is presently being called out of the larger group, i.e., called out of the body.

All of the saved are “called” and form part of the body, but only the “called out” — those to be taken out of the body — will form the bride of Christ.  The bride will be a selection out of a selection:  “For many are called, but few are chosen [lit., ‘few are called out’]” (Matthew 22:14).  The type has been set, and the antitype MUST follow the type in exact detail.

Note that man had no part in God’s work surrounding the formation of Eve — from the time of her creation in Adam, to the time when she was presented back to Adam.  Nor can man have a part in the formation of the Son’s bride.  It was Christ, not man, who said, “. . . I WILL BUILD My Church.”

2)  Blood and Water

The two elements from the opened side of Christ, necessary to bring into existence the bride, are “blood” and “water.”  The correct order is — as in Scripture — blood first, and then water.

To correctly understand the place of both blood and water in the formation of the bride, a person must again look to Old Testament typology.  Worship in Israel centered on the tabernacle, and later the temple.  Blood sacrifices to atone for sin took place at the brazen altar in the courtyard, and priests from the tribe of Levi ministered on behalf of Israelites for whom blood sacrifices had been offered.

The priests ministered between the brazen altar and the Holy Place.  Between these two points lay the brazen laver filled with water.  The priests’ hands and feet became defiled as they ministered in the courtyard, and they had to wash these parts of their bodies on their journey toward the Holy Place.  And blood at the brazen altar and water at the brazen laver constituted the two elements that the priests had to avail themselves of BEFORE they could enter into the Holy Place.

In this same respect, in the antitype, Christians themselves are priests today (1 Peter 2:9-10).  Christians, as the Old Testament priests, have direct access to that typified by the blood shed at the brazen altar, the water at the brazen laver, and entrance into the Holy Place.

And moving the present priesthood of Christians into the Messianic Era, Christians occupying positions with Christ will, in that day, constitute a kingdom of priests, or individually, king-priests (Revelation 1:6; 5:10).  And this kingdom of priests, these king-priests, will then rule the earth with the great King-Priest after the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 6:18-20).

The blood of Christ has been shed, and through this shed blood we presently possess eternal salvation.  An individual, having appropriated the blood shed at the brazen altar (pointing to Christ’s finished work at Calvary), is in a position to approach the Holy Place and have fellowship with the Father in the Holy of Holies through the rent Veil, through the “one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 10:19).  But the brazen laver filled with water stands in his path.  The water speaks of continual cleansing from the defilement of this world after an individual has been saved through a Sacrifice typified by the sacrifices occurring at the brazen altar.  And this continual cleansing is effected through Christ’s high priestly ministry on the basis of His shed blood presently on the mercy seat in the tabernacle in heaven.

The Christian though must allow Christ to cleanse him from accrued defilement.  The Christian must act himself if cleansing is to occur.

In the ministry of the priests in Israel in the Old Testament, water was present in the laver in the courtyard of the tabernacle, but a priest had to act himself.  He, as an individual, had to wash his hands and his feet.  Then the entire matter of sin among the people of God was dealt with in relation to blood on the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies once a year.

Viewing both aspects of the typology seen in the priestly ministry surrounding the tabernacle in this respect (priestly ministry surrounding both the laver and the mercy seat, following the offering of a blood sacrifice at the brazen laver), continual cleansing seen at the laver is effected through Christ’s present work as High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary; and He performs this work in a continuous manner on the basis of His shed blood on the mercy seat.  But, just as a priest in Israel had to act himself (he had to wash his hands and feet at the laver), so does the Christian have to act himself.  The Christian himself has to confess his sins (1 John 1:6-2:2).

The necessity of cleansing for the bride after this fashion, taught in spiritual lessons drawn from the tabernacle, is vividly set forth in the words of Jesus to Peter in John 13:8-10:

Peter said to Him [Jesus], “You shall never wash my feet!” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”

Simon Peter said to Him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!”

Jesus said to him, “He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean . . . .”

In the Greek text there are two different words translated “wash” in these verses — nipto and louoNipto means to wash a part of the body; and louo means to wash the entire body.  The word nipto (partial washing, a part of the body) is used in verse eight, and both words are used in verse ten.  The first word in verse ten is louo (complete washing, all of the body), and the second word is nipto (partial washing, part of the body).

In verse eight, Jesus told Peter that apart from parts of the body being washed, Peter could have no part WITH Him.  Peter’s response in verse nine indicates that he did not yet understand the significance of this partial washing.  Peter, desiring to assure himself of having a part WITH Christ, requested more than a washing of part of his body.  Peter requested that his complete body be washed.

However, Jesus told Peter that the one who had been completely washed (louo) needed only a partial washing (nipto).  Peter had been completely cleansed once — a one-time event that could never be changed, altered, or repeated.  But living in a body of death in this present world, Peter would become defiled over and over, requiring continual partial cleansings.  And apart from these partial cleansings, Peter could have no part WITH Christ.

Christians have been completely washed once.  This cleansing can never be changed, altered, or repeated.  However, just as the priests in the Old Testament ministering between the brazen altar and the Holy Place continually became defiled and had to wash their hands and feet at the brazen laver, the priests in the New Testament (Christians) continually become defiled in their present pilgrim walk, and must, time after time, avail themselves of cleansing through the antitype of the cleansing provided by water in the laver before they can enter into the Holy Place and have fellowship “with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 1:3-2:2).

Christians are IN Christ, eternally safe and secure because of a complete cleansing (louo).  But apart from partial cleansings (nipto) from the defilement of this world through confession of sin, Christians cannot have a part WITH Christ.

The truths taught by Christ through washing the disciples’ feet are the same truths taught by the blood and water flowing from the opened side of Christ.  The blood alone is sufficient to place one IN Christ, but the water is also required if one is to have a part WITH Christ.  Both elements are necessary to bring the bride into existence, who is to be taken out of the body.

Fall and Redemption of the Bride

For Adam was formed first, then Eve.

And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. (1 Timothy 2:13-14).

1)  Satan’s Method

In the Genesis account of the fall (Genesis 3), Satan entered into the serpent of the field and approached Eve with the question, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’ (Genesis 3:1b)?”  Satan, in order to bring about the fall of Adam, approached Eve and dealt with her on the basis of that which God had said.  Eve’s response and Satan’s action following her response are quite revealing.  In answering Satan, Eve not only altered but also added to the Word of God.  Satan then cast doubt on the veracity of God’s Word, resulting in Eve’s sin, and the subsequent fall of Adam as the federal head of the new creation (Genesis 3:2-6).

This is the first mention of Satan in Scripture, and several things stand out prominently in this first-mention account surrounding satanic activity:  Satan’s ways are subtle, and he uses the Word of God; and, according to the rule of first-mention in Scripture, Satan’s methods can only remain unchanged throughout all of subsequent Scripture.

Satan has appeared down through the years as an “angel of light,” and his ministers appear as “ministers of righteousness” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15).  His primary attack has always been against the people of God, through the Word of God.  Thus, it is vitally important that Christians not only know exactly what God has said in His Word, but also know that God has spoken with finality.

The final court of appeals must always be the Word of God, never man’s reasoning or interpretation.

Adam was brought into existence to have dominion over the earth (Genesis 1:26-28).  This was the dominion that Satan possessed (Ezekiel 28:14; Luke 4:5-6).  Satan knew that the supplanter (Adam) was on the scene; and in order to retain his position as the earth’s ruler, he knew that Adam, through sin, must be disqualified.

Satan, however, did not approach Adam directly.  Instead, knowing the position that Eve occupied in relation to Adam (a part of Adam’s very being), Satan approached and deceived Eve.  Then, Eve’s sin placed Adam in the peculiar position of having no choice other than to also partake of the forbidden fruit.

God had given Adam three commands:

1) Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat. (Genesis 2:16b)

2) but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat. (Genesis 2:17a)

3) Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:24)

In Genesis 2:16-17, God’s commands allowed man to eat of every tree in the garden except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  Among the trees provided for food was the tree of life, which had to do with “life” in relation to the purpose for man’s creation, not with natural life.

Man existed in a sinless, undying state prior to the fall.  And in this condition, man, naturally, had no need for fruit from a tree to prolong his life.  Thus, the tree of life could have had nothing to do with the longevity of natural life before the fall.

A tree can bring forth only “according to its kind” (Genesis 1:11), and this can never be changed or altered.  A tree providing fruit for one purpose before the fall could not provide fruit for another purpose following the fall.  The tree of life, in keeping with the purpose for man’s creation, could only have had to do with “life” in relation to regality (something clearly seen in related Scripture), not in relation to natural life.  Nor could this tree perpetuate natural life following the fall, for, again, a tree can only bring forth “according to its kind.”  Rather, the fruit from this tree, contextually, had to do with regality.  As seen from related Scripture, fruit from this tree would have provided the wisdom and knowledge for man to rule and reign.

(For Appendixes of The Bride in Genesis BOOK in this site, reference The Tree of Life and The Out-Resurrection and The Tree of Life for a detailed exposition of the purpose for the tree of life and why it was absolutely necessary for Adam not only to eat of this tree but to eat of this tree as a complete being [Adam, with Eve] if he was to fulfill God’s purpose for his creation.

Understanding God’s purpose for the tree of life is intimately connected with understanding a number of things dealt with at the very outset of Scripture.  It is intimately connected with understanding the purpose for man’s creation, that which Adam did following Eve partaking of the forbidden fruit, the purpose for man’s redemption, and that which lies out in the future for man.)

Following the fall, man was barred from the tree of life, for eating of this tree at that time could have provided him, not with longevity of natural life, but with the wisdom and knowledge to do something (rule and reign) that he was no longer in a position to do.  It would have allowed man to live in a realm where he was no longer in a position to live.

In this light, in reality, man’s initial act resulting in the fall, which became sin following the fall, was his failure to eat of the tree of life, as God had previously commanded.  Had Adam eaten of this tree before the fall, the only logical conclusion that follows is that the fall would not have occurred (else man would have found himself occupying the same position as Satan — a realm in which he was no longer in a position to occupy, ruling and reigning over the earth in a fallen condition).

2)  God’s Provision

In Genesis 2:24 God told Adam to cleave to his wife.  Once Eve had disobeyed God by partaking of the forbidden fruit, Adam was then in no position to eat of the tree of life.  A part of his very being, Eve, who was bone of his bones and flesh of his flesh (Genesis 2:23), had eaten of the forbidden fruit and was in a fallen state.

Eve in her fallen state was no longer in a position to eat of the tree of life.  Even though Adam hadn’t sinned, he was incomplete without Eve, who had sinned.  Thus, Adam, being incomplete without Eve, could not now eat of the tree of life.  Neither Adam nor Eve could eat of the tree of life after Eve had partaken of the forbidden fruit.  Adam, in order to one day eat of the tree of life as a complete being, had no choice other than to cleave to his wife by also partaking of the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Once Adam had partaken of the forbidden fruit, the complete being of Adam became in a fallen state.  This is the point where the fall actually occurred — the federal head of the new creation himself partaking of the forbidden fruit.  And that which Adam did was the only possible course of action for him to take in order to bring about Eve’s redemption, allowing Adam, as a complete being (Adam, with Eve), to one day find himself in a position to eat of the tree of life.

Adam was NOT deceived, but sinned with full knowledge of that which he was doing (1 Timothy 2:14).  God then provided a blood sacrifice and clothed Adam and Eve with coats of skins (Genesis 3:21).

And the subsequent removal of man from the garden in Eden was not God’s judgment upon man for his sin.  This removal was to prevent man from eating of the tree of life, something that he was no longer in a position to do (Genesis 3:22-24).

(Note that man, in his unfallen state, may very well have possessed mental capabilities far beyond that which man, in his fallen condition, is able to possess today.  This would provide the answer concerning how Adam was able to reason all of this out after the manner evident in the account, seen through comparing Scripture with Scripture.)

The original type of Christ’s redemptive work on behalf of His bride has forever been set forth in the act of Adam after Eve had sinned.

The first Adam found his bride in a fallen state.  He then partook of sin to bring about Eve’s redemption, in order that both might one day be able to eat of the tree of life together and realize that which is involved through eating fruit from this tree.

The last Adam, likewise, found His bride in a fallen state.  He who knew no sin was then made “sin for us that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21).  The “LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6).  He “bore our sins in His own body on the tree” (1 Peter 2:24).  Jesus was made sin to redeem His bride in order that both might one day be able to eat of the tree of life together and realize that which is involved through eating fruit from this tree.

In the first three chapters of Genesis, both the purpose and means of our salvation are set forth.

The first Adam was created to rule the earth, and Eve was removed from his body to rule as consort queen with him.  But Adam, through an encounter with Satan, resulting in the fall, forfeited his right to rule the earth.

Then, the last Adam, through an encounter with Satan (Matthew 4:1-11), has shown Himself fully qualified to rule the earth; and through His subsequent finished word on Calvary (John 19:30), He has also provided a means of redemption for that which the first Adam forfeited in the fall.  And the last Adam, as the first Adam, will have a bride taken from His body, who will rule the earth as consort queen with Him.

“The secret of Adam is the secret of the Messiah . . . As the first man was the one that sinned, so shall the Messiah be the one to do sin away.”  — A Jewish Rabbi of antiquity

(Redemption, provided through or because of Christ’s finished work at Calvary, involves far more than man’s eternal salvation.  It involves [allows for] the redemption of the forfeited inheritance, the earth, yet future; and it involves [allows for] the redemption of the bride, which will occur at the same time as the redemption of the forfeited inheritance.

For information on the redemption of the forfeited inheritance and the redemption of the bride, refer to the author’s books, The Time of the End BOOK, Chapters 8, 9, 19, and Mysteries of the Kingdom BOOK, chapters 8, 10, 11, both in this website.)
Chapter Two
Isaac and Rebekah

Now Abraham was old, well advanced in age; and the LORD had blessed Abraham in all things.

So Abraham said to the oldest servant of his house, who ruled over all that he had, “Please, put your hand under my thigh,

and I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell;

but you shall go to my country and to my family, and take a wife for my son Isaac.” . . .

So the servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and swore to him concerning this matter.

Then the servant took ten of his master's camels and departed, for all his master's goods were in his hand. And he arose and went to Mesopotamia, to the city of Nahor.  (Genesis 24:1-4, 9-10)

There are five chapters in the book of Genesis (Genesis 21-25) that foreshadow in type the complete history of Israel and the Church, from the birth of Israel’s Messiah to that future time when Israel’s Messiah returns and restores the kingdom to the nation.

Within that which is revealed in these five chapters, following the crucifixion of the nation’s Messiah, Israel is set aside (Genesis 22; 23).  Then, with the nation set aside, God, in the antitype of that which is seen in Genesis 24, sends the Holy Spirit into the world to procure a bride for His Son

And once the bride has been procured, the bride is removed.  Israel is then brought back into the picture, with the nation being restored as the wife of Jehovah and the Millennial Kingdom being ushered in (chapter 25).

The Dispensational Framework of Genesis 21-25

In Hebrews 11:17-19, recounting events in Genesis 22:1-14 (the offering of Isaac), Abraham is said to have received his son in a “figurative sense” (Genesis 22:19).  And these verses reflect back upon this whole panorama of events — Abraham offering his son on a particular mountain in the land of Moriah, with a ram dying in the stead of his son (the son looked upon as dead [having died in a substitute — in the ram; Genesis 22:13]).  And it was immediately following these events that Abraham received his son in a “figurative sense” (the son alive on the third day [pointing to resurrection on the third day; Genesis 22:4]).

The Greek word translated “figurative sense” (NKJV or as in the KJV: “figure”) in Hebrews 11:19 is parabole in the Greek text, the word from which we derive our English word “parable,” which is simply an Anglicized form of the Greek word.  The word parabole is a compound word meaning “to cast alongside” (para, “alongside”; and bole, “to cast”).  A “parable,” defined from the meaning of the word itself, is simply one truth placed alongside of a previous truth to help explain the previous truth.

Thus, Abraham receiving his son in the manner seen at the conclusion of the account in Genesis 22:1-14 is associated in Hebrews 11:19 with God’s provision of additional truth, reflecting back on previous truth.  Abraham’s actions form one truth reflecting back on previous truth, given to help explain the previous truth (by providing additional light).  And the previous truth would take one all the way back to that which began to be revealed in the opening chapters of Genesis, forming types of the future work of the Son at Calvary (ref., Chapter 1 in this book).

As well, the word parabole in Hebrews 11:19 is used in a similar respect to the way that the Greek word tupos (type) is used.  Abraham receiving his son in (in the form of) a parable (God placing subsequent truth alongside previous truth) formed a subsequent type to previous types seen in the opening chapters of Genesis, providing additional light upon the subject.

(The words tupos [type] and parabole [parable] were both used earlier in Hebrews, referring to the tabernacle [in Hebrews 8:5 (tupos, translated “pattern,” KJV/NKJV) and in Hebrews 9:9 (parabole, translated “figure,” KJV; and “symbolic,” NKJV)].  In this respect, the word parabole in Hebrews 9:9; 11:19 would not only have to do with truth placed alongside of previous truth but, as well, with truth placed alongside of that which the type foreshadowed — future truth.

Abraham receiving his son in a parable would be truth placed alongside that which would occur 2,000 years in the future — the Father receiving His Son in exactly the same manner in the antitype.  Thus, tupos and parabole become somewhat interchangeable words in this account [as well as the use of the two words earlier relative to the tabernacle].)

It then follows in these five chapters (Genesis 21-25) that “Abraham” is a type of God the Father, “Isaac” a type of God the Son, and Abraham’s two wives (“Sarah” in Genesis 23, and “Keturah” in Genesis 25) are types of Israel, the wife of Jehovah.  Then, Abraham sending his “servant” into Mesopotamia to procure a bride for his son between the time Sarah dies and the time he marries Keturah could point to only one thing — God sending the Holy Spirit into the world to procure a bride for His Son between the time Israel is set aside and the time Israel is restored.  Thus, one can immediately see that there is a God-provided, dispensational framework of events in these five chapters.

1)  The Birth of Isaac (Genesis 21)

Isaac was born in a supernatural manner at a set time.  Sarah was barren and beyond the age of childbearing, but God intervened, returned to Sarah “according to the time of life,” and “Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.” (Genesis 17:1-7, 16-21; 18:10-14; 21:1-7).

The birth of Christ occurred in a supernatural manner at a set time (Galatians 4:4).  Israel, as Sarah, was barren (Matthew 21:19); but, through a supernatural work, as seen in the type, Israel brought forth God’s Son.  God Himself became flesh in the person of His Son — the God-Man (John 1:14).

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 1:18).

2)  The Offering of Isaac (Genesis 22)

Years later, God instructed Abraham to offer his son for a burnt-offering upon a particular mountain in the land of Moriah.  After Abraham and Isaac were on the mountain, God provided a substitute to die in Isaac’s stead.  Isaac paid the penalty for sin through a ram slain in his stead — a substitutionary atonement (Genesis 22:13).  Then, resurrection is seen through Abraham receiving his son on the third day in a parable (Genesis 22:4), reflecting back on previous types but also pointing forward to the resurrection of God’s Son in the antitype on the third day.

God offered His Son at Calvary on a particular mountain in the land of Moriah.  And God’s Son may very well have died on the exact spot that Abraham offered his son.  God, 2,000 years earlier, in the type, was very particular about the place in which Abraham was to offer his son;  and this place was afterwards called “Jehovah-jireh,” meaning, “In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen (KJV) [lit., ‘In the Mount of The LORD it shall be provided’ (NKJV)]” (cf. Genesis 22:2, 14).

A substitutionary atonement for man was provided at Calvary.  God Himself in the person of His Son — the Passover Lamb — paid the penalty for sin.  God purchased man’s salvation with His own blood (Acts 20:28).  The Jewish Passover, 33 A.D., was the day God died — to be raised from the dead on the third day (Genesis 22:4; Luke 24:21).

3)  The Death of Sarah (Genesis 23)

Following the offering of Isaac, the wife of Abraham, Sarah, died.  This can only point to that which occurred following the offering of Jesus.  It was at this time that the wife of God the Father, Israel (a divorced wife, awaiting restoration), was set aside for a revealed time and purpose.

4)  The Bride for Isaac (Genesis 24)

Following the death of Sarah, Abraham sent his eldest servant into Mesopotamia to procure a bride for Isaac.  This can only point to that which occurred following the setting aside of Israel — God the Father then sent the Holy Spirit into the world to procure a bride for His Son.

After Abraham’s servant had procured the bride, he removed the bride from Mesopotamia and returned to Abraham’s home with the bride.  This can only point to that which the Holy Spirit will do after He has procured the bride.  The Holy Spirit will then remove the bride from the world and return to the Father’s home with the bride.

5)  The Remarriage of Abraham (Genesis 25)

Following the completion of the servant’s mission in Mesopotamia, Abraham again took a wife, Keturah.  Abraham’s previous wife, Sarah, had been barren in childbearing; but Keturah was very fruitful.

This can only point to that which will occur relative to God and Israel after the Holy Spirit completes His mission in the world.  God, following this time, will again take Israel unto Himself as His wife.  Israel today is the adulterous, divorced wife of Jehovah.  But in that future day, following Israel’s repentance, the nation will be cleansed of her harlotry.  And, as Abraham married Keturah following the procurement of a bride for his son, God will remarry Israel following the procurement of a bride for His Son.  Then, as Keturah was very fruitful where Sarah was barren (Genesis 16:1; 25:2), restored Israel will be very fruitful where the nation in the past was barren (Jonah 1:1ff; 3:1ff).

Scope of Genesis 24

With the complete picture before us concerning events both before and after the bride has been called out, one can immediately see the proper time in which events surrounding the procurement of a bride for God’s Son occur.  According to the type, they must occur during the present dispensation, while Israel is set aside.

The journey of Abraham’s servant into the far country and his search for and procurement of a bride for Isaac will form the material for the remainder of this chapter.

1)  Old Age of Abraham (Genesis 24:1)

This typifies the eternity of God.  God’s plans and purposes date from eternity (Acts 15:18).  The bride was chosen in the Son from “before the foundation of the world” (Ephesians 1:4).  As Eve was created in Adam at the beginning, but not removed as a separate entity until Adam was put to sleep and his side opened, thus it is with the bride of Christ.  The bride was created in the last Adam from eternity, but could not be removed as a separate entity until Christ had been crucified and His side opened, from whence blood and water flowed forth — the two elements necessary to bring the bride into existence (ref. Chapter 1 in this book).

2)  Servant of Abraham (Genesis 24:2)

The eldest servant of Abraham is not named in Genesis 24.  Though some individuals attempt to identify this servant with a previously named servant in Genesis 15:2 — “Eliezer of Damascus” — his identity in chapter twenty-four is unrevealed and unknown.  About fifty years had elapsed between the events in chapters fifteen and twenty-four, and the two servants mentioned may or may not be the same person.

The servant, typifying the Holy Spirit, was sent into Mesopotamia for a specific purpose, given in the chapter.  He was sent into Mesopotamia to search for and procure a bride for Abraham’s son.  And the purpose for the Holy Spirit being sent into the world in the antitype must be exactly the same — to search for and procure a bride for God’s Son.

3)  Covenant with Abraham (Genesis 24:2-9, 37)

Before Abraham’s servant traveled to Mesopotamia to search for and procure a bride for his master’s son, Abraham made the servant swear “by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of the earth", that he would take a wife for his son only from among his own kindred, in his own country (Genesis 24:3-4).

The servant left Abraham’s house to go into Mesopotamia with the specific instructions that the bride for Isaac was to be taken only from the family of Abraham.  The bride would be removed from the family (called out of the family) and constitute only a small part of the family.

In like fashion, remaining completely within that which is revealed in the type, the Holy Spirit presently in the world searching for a bride for God’s Son would have to be conducting this search under the same instructions seen in the type.  The Spirit presently in the world, searching for the bride, of necessity, would have to be conducting this search under a single, direct command from the Father:  The bride for God’s Son must be taken only from among members of the family, from among the saved.

The type in Genesis 24 requires that the bride be called out of the called, called out of the saved, not called out of the unsaved (represented by the Canaanite in the type).  And this is in complete accord with the previous type, where Adam’s bride was removed from his body (Genesis 2).

(Genesis chapter twenty-four provides a good illustration of how a subsequent type will shed additional light on a previous type [Genesis 2] while remaining in complete agreement, in every detail, with the previous type.)

Abraham’s son was not to be brought into Mesopotamia again (Genesis 24:6).  And the task of procuring the bride was left entirely to Abraham’s servant, who was sent into Mesopotamia alone.  In like manner, God’s Son is not to be brought into the world again; and the work of procuring the bride has been left entirely to the Holy Spirit, who was sent into the world alone.  Christ died ONCE to pay the ransom for the bride — His own blood.  And the Son, as Isaac, remains at home with the Father while the Holy Spirit, as Abraham’s servant, searches for and procures the bride in the world.

(There are two main realms in which the Spirit works in the world today — breathing life into the one who has no life [the salvation of the unsaved], and the search for a bride for God’s Son [which has to do with a work among the saved, a work among those in whom He had previously breathed life].  And the latter, the search for a bride for God’s Son, occurring among the saved alone, has to do with the saving of the soul.

The Spirit was already in the world to do a work among the unsaved [and had been since that seen in Genesis 1:2b ff], but the Spirit is also seen being sent into the world at the beginning of this present dispensation to search for and procure a bride for God’s Son [Acts 2:1ff].)

4)  Possessions of Abraham (Genesis 24:10)

Abraham’s servant took ten camels laden with his master’s goods and departed into Mesopotamia.  “Ten” in Scripture is the number of ordinal completion.  “Ten camels” were required because ALL of the master’s goods were in his hands.

The Holy Spirit presently in the world has in His possession ALL of the Master’s goods, which are to be found in the Word of God alone.  The Holy Spirit — the One who gave this Word, the One in possession of these goods — is the only One who can, and will, reveal them to the prospective bride.

And it should go without saying that any Christian who reads and studies God’s revelation MUST do so under the leadership of the Holy Spirit, who both gave and reveals the Word.  The Bible remains a closed book to all others.

5)  Divine Intervention in the Search (Genesis 24:11-15, 40)

It was God who brought about the meeting of Abraham’s servant and Rebekah.  As Abraham’s servant stood by a particular well of water, Rebekah approached to draw water from the well.  Every aspect of the search for the bride is marked by divine intervention and fraught with spiritual significance.

The Holy Spirit is in the world today standing by a particular Well of Water (a type of the Word of God; cf. Isaiah 12:3; 55:1).  And the bride is the one who comes to the Well to draw Water.

6)  Qualities of the Bride (Genesis 24:15-22)

The bride being sought by the Holy Spirit in the world today is:

a)  From the Family (Genesis 24:15)

The bride is being called out of the new creation in Christ where there is neither Jew nor Gentile.  Those within this new creation are referred to as both “children” and “sons” of God, awaiting the adoption into a firstborn status.  They are “Abraham’s seed [by being ‘in Christ,’ who is Abraham’s Seed], and heirs according to the promise [heavenly, not earthly]” (cf. Genesis 22:17; Romans 8:17; Galatians 3:29).

b)  A Virgin (Genesis 24:16)

This aspect of the bride is further illustrated in the parable of the ten virgins (Matthew 25:1-13).  Many Bible students associate these ten virgins with Israel awaiting the coming of the nation’s Messiah, but such an interpretation of the passage is not biblically possible.  These ten virgins are associated with the kingdom of the heavens (Matthew 25:1), which had previously been taken from Israel (Matthew 21:43).

(In reality, throughout the present dispensation, Israel occupies the place of an adulterous woman, not a virgin.  And Israel will not forsake her harlotry, or be cleansed relative to her harlotry, until AFTER the nation’s Messiah returns [Hosea 2; 3; cf. Hosea 5:15-6:2].)

The ten virgins represent those to whom the offer of the kingdom of the heavens is presently being extended.  They, thus, could only represent ALL of the saved (“ten,” showing ordinal completion) during the present dispensation (all of the called).  And the five wise virgins, singled out from among the ten (singled out from among all of the called), would represent those who will form the bride (those called out of the called).

All ten of the virgins possessed lamps with oil (Matthew 24:1, 7-8 ASV).  The request of the five foolish virgins in Matthew 25:8 should read, “Give us of your oil; for our lamps are going out” (ref., ASV, NASB95, NIV).  The difference between the wise and foolish virgins lay, not in the thought that the foolish had no oil (otherwise, their lamps could not be “going out”), but in the fact that the wise virgins possessed an extra supply of oil.

“Oil” is symbolic of the Holy Spirit (Leviticus 8:10-12; 21:12; 1 Samuel 10:1, 6; 16:13).  The five wise virgins possessing an extra supply of oil typify Christians possessing an extra supply of the Holy Spirit, i.e., Christians filled with the Holy Spirit; and the five foolish virgins lacking the extra supply of oil typify Christians lacking an extra supply of the Holy Spirit, i.e., Christians not filled with the Holy Spirit.

All ten of the virgins in Matthew chapter twenty-five went forth to meet the Bridegroom together — just as all Christians will go forth to meet the Bridegroom together.  But only those five wise virgins with an extra supply of oil entered into the marriage festivities (Matthew 25:10).  Thus, will it be in the future experience of Christians relative to being filled or not being filled with the Holy Spirit.

c)  Able to Draw Water from the Well (Exodus 2:16-22)

The bride is to be taken from Christians who are able to draw from the Word of God.  Not only was Isaac’s bride found by a well, but also Jacob’s bride (Genesis 29:6-10), and Moses’ bride (Exodus 2:16-21).

There is a close connection between being filled with the Spirit and dwelling deeply in the Word of God.  Ephesians and Colossians are companion epistles and parallel one another in a number of places.  One parallel is found by comparing Ephesians 5:18-20 with Colossians 3:16-17.

In Ephesians, Christians are told,

And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,

speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord,

giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ”  (Ephesians 5:18-20)

Then, in Colossians, Christians are told,

Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”  (Colossians 3:16-17)

Note the contextual parallel between the command to “be filled with the Spirit” in Ephesians and the command to “let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom” in Colossians.  The inference is clear that a Christian who is “filled with the Spirit” is one who has allowed the Word of Christ to dwell in him richly in all wisdom.  And this is not simply a reference to possessing knowledge of the Word of God.  Rather, it has to do with possessing knowledge of the Word of God, connected with wisdom from above.  It is allowing the Word to dwell in an individual, in all wisdom, as he studies and prays over this Word under the leadership of the Holy Spirit.

The bride is to be made up of such Christians — dwelling near and drawing from the Well — who are being called out of the larger body of Christians.  Christians possessing knowledge of the Word, in line with that revealed in Ephesians 5:18-20 and Colossians 3:16-17, will find themselves in a position to overcome in the present spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6:10ff).  And the inverse of that would be true for Christians lacking such knowledge of the Word.

7)  Riches of Abraham Revealed (Genesis 24:53)

Abraham’s servant brought forth “jewelry of silver, jewelry of gold, and clothing,” and gave them to Rebekah.  And he gave also to her brother and to her mother “precious things.”  The riches of the father — belonging to Isaac (Genesis 24:36) — were revealed and given to Rebekah.  Some of the precious things among these riches were even distributed among other members of the family.

During the present dispensation, the Holy Spirit brings forth treasures, revealing them to the bride.  These treasures are found in the Word of God, and are brought forth as the bride, under the leadership of the Holy Spirit, dwells deeply in the Word of God.

These treasures are presently being revealed to the bride (1 Corinthians 2:9-10) to show the bride that which will belong to her when she inherits with the Son in the coming age (John 16:15; Ephesians 3:6, 8; 1 Peter 1:4).  And according to the type, some of the precious things belonging to the Son are even revealed to other members of the family — Christians who will not participate in the activities awaiting the bride.

If one understands the work of the Holy Spirit in the world as set forth in Genesis 24, he will have little problem with that which is erroneously being promulgated in almost the whole of Christendom relative to the work of the Holy Spirit during the present dispensation.  Invariably, Christians link the Spirit’s work during the present dispensation primarily with a work surrounding the gospel of grace.  Though this is a work of the Spirit during the present dispensation, it is not a work peculiar to the present dispensation; and it has absolutely nothing to do with the reason why the Spirit was sent into the world in the antitype of that which is seen in Genesis chapter twenty-four, on the day of Pentecost in 33 A.D.

The Holy Spirit has always been in the world relative to His unchanging work surrounding salvation by grace, breathing life into the one who has no life (spiritual life).  This must be the case, for, according to the original type (Genesis 1:2-5), He is the One who moved/presently moves upon the ruined creation, effecting a change, with subsequent types pointing to the fact that He is the One who does a work among the unsaved, based on death and shed blood, causing the person to pass “from death to life” (cf. Genesis 2:7; Ezekiel 37:1-10; John 5:24; Ephesians 2:1, 5).  And apart from this work of the Spirit, there could have been no salvation for man during prior dispensations and nor can there be salvation for man during the present dispensation.

It is only during the present dispensation — extending from Pentecost to the rapture, a 2,000-year period — that the work of the Spirit is seen in a different capacity than it is seen in any previous dispensation (though His work relative to salvation by grace remains exactly the same during the present dispensation as in any previous dispensation — breathing life into the one previously having no life, performed on the basis of death and shed blood).  The Spirit is seen being sent at the beginning of this dispensation to perform a work completely peculiar to the present dispensation, which has nothing to do with salvation by grace.

Rather, the work that He was sent to perform during the present dispensation has to do solely with searching for and procuring a bride for God’s Son.  And this special, particular work (e.g., Ephesians 1:13-14) should never be confused with the Spirit’s continuing work relative to salvation by grace.

Abraham’s servant was in Mesopotamia to seek a bride for Isaac.  This was his mission, and nothing could turn him aside from this task.  Once the prospective bride had been found, Abraham’s servant began to reveal the possessions, wealth, and glories belonging to Isaac.  These had been entrusted to Abraham’s servant during the time which he was to spend in Mesopotamia searching for the bride.

In like manner, the Holy Spirit is presently in the world seeking a bride for God’s Son, Jesus.  This is His mission, and nothing will turn Him aside from this task.  Once a prospective member of the bride has been found, the Holy Spirit begins to reveal the possessions, wealth, and glories belonging to God’s Son.  These have been entrusted by the Father to the Holy Spirit during the time when He is in the world searching for the bride.

8)  Invitation to the Bride (Genesis 24:58)

After Rebekah had been shown the possessions, wealth, and glories of Isaac — which could be hers as the bride of Isaac — she was extended a simple invitation:  “Will you go with this man?”  Her answer was equally simple:  “I will go.”  Note that Rebekah did not have to go.  A negative answer would not have changed her family status.  But such an answer would have changed her status forever in relation to the bride and the inheritance awaiting the bride.

Likewise today, after the Holy Spirit has revealed to Christians the possession, wealth, and glories awaiting them as joint-heirs with the Son, the simple invitation is extended:  “Will you go?”  The Christian himself must decide whether he would be content just to be a member of the family, or whether he desires to inherit with the Son and participate in His glory.  There is no force or coercion — just a simple invitation.

It is interesting to note that immediately after Rebekah made her decision to go with Abraham’s servant and be the bride of Isaac, other members of her family sought to delay her journey.  It is the same among members of the family today (among other Christians today).  Once a Christian decides, “I will go,” and begins to govern his life accordingly, he experiences trouble.  And this trouble invariably emanates from other family members — from other Christians who have little or no appreciation of these things (cf. Matthew 13:20-21).

9)  Journey toward Isaac’s Home (Genesis 24:61)

Then Rebekah and her maids arose, and they rode on the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and departed.

The servant took Rebekah and her damsels out of the land on ten camels and journeyed toward Isaac’s home (the number of camels is not given at the time of departure but inferred from the number of camels [ten] that the servant had when he came into the land [Genesis 24:10]).  “Ten” — the number of ordinal completion — signifies that ALL of the damsels went out to meet Isaac (cf. Matthew 25:1-13; Luke 19:12-24).

For Christians who have eyes to see, this hardly needs comment.  The antitype is easily seen.  After the Holy Spirit has procured the bride, ALL Christians (the dead raised and removed with the living) will depart this world with the Holy Spirit and journey toward the Son’s home.  This will take place at the end of the present dispensation, after the Father has prospered the Holy Spirit’s journey in the far country (Genesis 24:21).  After a sufficient number of Christians, necessary to occupy the positions of power and authority in the coming kingdom of Christ, have been called out — responded in a positive manner to the question, “Will you go” — The events of 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, synonymous with that foreshadowed by Genesis 24:61, will occur.

10)  Meeting of Isaac and Rebekah (Genesis 24:62-67)

Rebekah went forth toward Isaac’s home, and Isaac came forth toward Rebekah’s home.  Their meeting occurred between these two places, at “evening” (Genesis 24:63).  They then journeyed to Isaac’s home, where Rebekah became Isaac’s wife.

Christians and the Lord Jesus Christ will meet part way between earth and heaven, at “evening” — at the end of the present dispensation.  The bride will then go with the Bridegroom to His home, where she will become His wife.

When Rebekah met Isaac, she put on her veil and was separated from the other damsels who accompanied her.  When the bride meets the Bridegroom, she will put on her veil (a type of the wedding garment) and be separated from the other Christians who accompany her (cf. Matthew 22:11-14; Revelation 19:7-8).

This separation of Christians, in the antitype, will occur at the Judgment Seat of Christ.  And the bride will then subsequently be allowed to “array herself in fine linen, bright and pure” (ASV) and be revealed as the prospective wife of the Lamb for all to behold (Revelation 19:7-10).

This is the time which the entire creation — presently groaning and travailing under the bondage of sin — is awaiting (Romans 8:18-23).  This is the time when the true Hallelujah Chorus will be sung:

After these things I heard a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, “Alleluia! Salvation and glory and honor and power belong to the Lord our God!” . . . 

Again they said, “Alleluia!” …

And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who sat on the throne, saying, “Amen! Alleluia!”

Then a voice came from the throne, saying, “Praise our God, all you His servants and those who fear Him, both small and great!”

And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!

Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage [‘marriage festivities’] of the Lamb has come . .. .” (Revelation 19:1, 3, 4-7a [3a])

(For information on the wedding festivities in Revelation 19:7-9, which immediately precede the bride becoming the Lamb’s wife, refer to the author’s book, in this site, The Time of the End BOOK, Chapter 30, “The Marriage Supper of the Lamb.”)
Chapter Three
Jacob and Rachel

Then Isaac called Jacob and blessed him, and charged him, and said to him: “You shall not take a wife from the daughters of Canaan.

Arise, go to Padan Aram, to the house of Bethuel your mother's father; and take yourself a wife from there of the daughters of Laban your mother's brother” . . .

Then he [Jacob] dreamed, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.

And behold, the LORD stood above it and said: “I am the LORD God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and your descendants.

Also your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south; and in you and in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.

Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have spoken to you.”

Then Jacob awoke from his sleep . . . 

And he called the name of that place Bethel . . . . (Genesis 28:1-2, 12-16, 19a [16a])

The experiences of Jacob constitute one of the numerous dual types found throughout Scripture.  That which God revealed through Jacob sets forth typical experiences of God’s two firstborn Sons — Jesus and the nation of Israel.

A primary reference associating “Jacob” with the nation of Israel can be seen through the manner in which God dealt with his descendants.  Jacob’s descendants were to be multiplied as “the dust of the earth” (Genesis 28:14).  And this would parallel a previous statement concerning Isaac’s descendants, which were to be multiplied “as the stars of heaven” (Genesis 26:4).

To understand that which is in view, one must go back to a prior section of Scripture where reference is made to Abraham’s descendants in relation to both heavenly and earthly realms:

blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies.

In your seed (descendants) all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice” (Genesis 22:17-18; cf. Genesis 14:19-20).

Abraham and his lineage were to realize both heavenly and earthly promises and blessings.  And, realizing these promises and blessings, the descendants of Abraham were to “possess the gate of their enemies” in both realms.

The “gate” was where the affairs of a city were transacted in that day (e.g., Ruth 4:1ff).  Individuals “possessing the gate [of a city]” would be looked upon as controlling the affairs of that city.  And, reflecting back on the purpose for man’s creation in the beginning (Genesis 1:26-28), possessing the gate of the enemy in both heavenly and earthly realms for man would refer particularly to governmental control in these realms.

The reference is to a time yet future, when the Seed (descendants) of Abraham (Christ, Israel, and the Church [which will occupy the position of a third firstborn son following the adoption]) will control the affairs of state presently controlled by the enemy.  The “enemy” who controls affairs in the heavenly realm is Satan and his angels; and the “enemy” who controls affairs in the earthly realm is the Gentile nations, ruling under Satan and his angels (cf. Psalm 110:1; Daniel 10:12-20; Luke 19:27; Ephesians 6:12ff; Revelation 12:7-10).

Israel during Old Testament times was made the repository for both heavenly and earthly promises and blessings, for no other seed (descendants) of Abraham (within the lineage associated with these blessings and promises [cf. Genesis 17:18, 21; 21:12]) existed at that time.

However, at Christ’s first coming, Israel rejected and forfeited the proffered heavenly sphere of the kingdom, wherein the heavenly promises and blessings lay.  And after Israel had rejected and forfeited this heavenly sphere of the kingdom, God called an entirely new creation into existence, with a view to this new creation being the recipient of that which Israel had rejected (Matthew 21:33-43; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 Peter 2:9-10).

“Christians,” who are Abraham’s seed (descendants) by their positional standing in Christ (who is Abraham’s Seed), are now the ones in line to inherit the heavenly promises and blessings within the heavenly sphere of the kingdom that Israel rejected (Galatians 3:29; Ephesians 1:10-14).  And it is among Christians, those comprising the “one new man,” the new creation “in Christ,” that the Spirit is presently conducting His search for a bride for God’s Son.

As previously seen, the bride for God’s Son must come from God’s own family (ref. Chapter 2 in this book).  And God’s family in this respect can’t be a reference to Israel (for Israel, previously the wife of Jehovah, though now divorced, is destined to one day be restored [Isaiah 54:5; Jeremiah 3:14; Hosea 2:19, 20]).  The bride can come only from the new creation “in Christ,” for, aside from Israel, God has no other family members on earth.  And this new creation, unlike Israel, does not possess a past or future connection with God in relation to marriage (2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 1:12-15; 5:21-32).

(Christ, the second Man, the last Adam, can no more rule apart from possessing a wife to rule with Him than could the first man, the first Adam have ruled in this capacity in the type.

Adam was incomplete without Eve.  She was part of his very being and completed Adam [Genesis 2:23-24].  Adam could only have taken the scepter and ascended the throne as a complete being, which would have required Eve to be at his side as consort queen.  And so must it be in the antitype surrounding Christ and His wife.

God established a principle concerning the matter at the time of Man’s creation — “. . . let them [the man and the woman together] have dominion” [Genesis 1:26-28].  And this principle cannot be violated.  Man cannot rule this earth, fulfilling the purpose for his creation, apart from the Husband-wife relationship — whether relating to Israel or the Church.)

After the Spirit has procured the bride and after God subsequently concludes His unfinished dealings with Israel (seven years yet remain — Daniel’s unfulfilled 70th Week), that which is stated in Genesis 22:17 will then be brought to pass.  The Seed (descendants) of Abraham, both heavenly and earthly, will then possess the gate of the enemy.

The Seed (descendants) of Abraham will control the affairs of state from both heavenly and earthly realms — Christ and His wife from a heavenly realm, and God and Israel from an earthly realm.

Christ and His wife will rule from the heavenly Jerusalem over the nations of the earth.  Christ will be seated on His own throne, and His wife will be seated on this throne with Him as well (Revelation 2:26-27; 3:21).

On earth, Israel will be restored as the wife of Jehovah, and the theocracy will be restored to Israel.  And, in keeping with the principle that God Himself set forth in the beginning, Jehovah’s wife on earth can no more rule apart from a Husband (the King [God], with His consort queen [Israel]) than can Christ’s wife rule in the heavens apart from a Husband (the King [Christ], with His consort queen [the Church]).  God will have to rule on earth in the midst of Israel, within an existing Husband-wife relationship (Genesis 1:26; Joel 2:27).

God’s rule on earth in the midst of Israel though may possibly be brought to pass through His Son, who is God manifested in the flesh.  The Father will turn the kingdom over to the Son, with the Son inheriting all things; and the Son will occupy a dual position in the kingdom.  Not only will God’s Son be seated on His own throne in the heavens, but He will also be seated on David’s throne on the earth, in the midst of Israel (Luke 1:31-32; Revelation 3:21).  He will have a dual reign in this respect and may very well be recognized as Jehovah Himself relative to the Husband-wife relationship that must exist between God and Israel in that day.

In Genesis 28, though the things promised Jacob are in connection with the earthly realm of the kingdom, Jacob, at this time, would have had just as much claim as Isaac to promises and blessings in the heavenly realm as well.  The reference to heavenly for one (Isaac) and earthly for the other (Jacob) was apparently for an emphasis that God wanted to make at these two points in His Word relative to different things revealed concerning each individual, for both men could only have had an equal claim to both realms.  That would be to say, God wanted to call particular attention to things concerning the heavenly realm at one point in His Word when dealing with Isaac and to things concerning the earthly realm at another point in His Word when dealing with Jacob, though both, in actuality, would pertain equally to both men.

Jacob – A Type of Israel

Jacob, like the nation of Israel, left the land covenanted to his fathers and became a merchantman and a wanderer in a strange land.  But Jacob, like Israel, possessed God’s promise that in all places where he went, God would be with him and eventually restore him to his own land.

While in a strange land Jacob went to Laban, his mother’s brother, began to serve Laban, was mistreated by Laban, but became a crafty merchantman who grew wealthy at Laban’s expense.

Israel, in a strange land during the times of the Gentiles, has served Gentile causes and has been mistreated by the Gentiles.  And the Jewish people, in turn, as Jacob, have become crafty merchantmen who are growing wealthy at the expense of the Gentiles.

(“Laban,” though Abraham’s kinsman [Genesis 24:15, 29], can typify the Gentiles because, as Esau, he is not part of the lineage of Abraham through Isaac, Jacob, and Jacob’s twelve sons.)

After acquiring a certain amount of wealth from Laban, Jacob expressed a desire to return to the land of his fathers (Genesis 30:25-26).  But the time for his return, although near, had not arrived.  God’s command for Jacob to return came only after Jacob had acquired ALL of Laban’s wealth (Genesis 31:1-3).

From Genesis 28:15 to Genesis 31:3 God did not speak to Jacob.  The heavens remained closed during the entire time of Jacob’s exile.  God did not speak to Jacob until it was time for him to return.  Jacob then returned to Bethel (meaning, “the house of God”), the same place from which he had departed at the beginning of his exile, bearing the riches of Laban (Genesis 28:19; 31:17-18; 35:1, 8).  And at Bethel the Abrahamic covenant, concerning ownership of the land, was reaffirmed to Jacob (Genesis 35:9-12).

Israel today has acquired a certain amount of wealth from the Gentiles (though far from all wealth) and is expressing a desire to return to the land.  But the time for Israel’s return, although near, has not arrived.  We’re still living during the Times of the Gentiles, and God has not issued the command for Israel to return.

The present return of a remnant to the land is NOT the restoration prophesied numerous times in the Old Testament and set forth in type by the experiences surrounding Jacob’s return.  This return has occurred during a time when the heavens, relative to Israel, remain closed.  This return (resulting from a Zionistic movement that began during the closing years of the nineteenth century) has occurred during that period depicted by Jacob’s exile, from Genesis 28:15 to Genesis 31:3.

This present return of the Jewish people has occurred during the Times of the Gentiles, during their time of exile, while the heavens remain closed, prior to their acquisition of ALL the wealth of the Gentiles, and prior to God’s command for the Jewish people to return.

Regardless of that which has occurred, that which is revealed in the Word cannot change.  The Word of God clearly declares that during the entire time of Israel’s present exile, the Times of the Gentiles will continue, the heavens will remain closed, and God will not speak to Israel again until that time which is  foreshadowed by Genesis 31:3 (cf. Jeremiah 30:3, 7-10, 18; 31:8-9).

God’s command for Israel to return will come only after the Times of the Gentiles has ended, only after the exile has ended, only after the heavens have once again been opened (Genesis 31:3), and only after Israel has come into possession of ALL the wealth of the Gentiles (Isaiah 60:5, 11 [“forces,” KJV, should be translated “wealth,” or “riches”; ref. ASV, NASB95, NIV, NKJV]).

Only then will God restore His people to the land; only then will the Jewish people hear God’s command to return to Bethel and hear His voice once again, reaffirming the Abrahamic covenant to them (cf. Exodus 2:23-3:10).

(The remnant of Jews presently in the land, comprised of those returning before it is time for the Jewish people to return, almost 6,000,000 strong today, will be uprooted and driven back out among the nations in the middle of the coming Tribulation.  God, because of the continued disobedience of His people, over centuries of time, drove the Jewish people out among the nations for a purpose, yet to be realized — repentance.  And it is out among the nations, not in the land, that God will deal with His people relative to repentance, with a view to restoration.

Refer to the author’s book, in this site, Mysteries of the Kingdom BOOK, chapter 2, “I Will Return,” for more information on this subject.)

Note God’s command to Jacob with respect to his return to the land — completely within God’s timing, not Jacob’s — and that which followed:

Then the LORD said to Jacob, “Return to the land of your fathers and to your family, and I will be with you.” (Genesis 31:3)

The land which I gave Abraham and Isaac I give to you; and to your descendants after you I give this land. (Genesis 35:12)

In complete accord with these verses — the heavens being opened again and God again speaking to Jacob — God will one day again resume His dealings with Israel.  And in that coming day, the Jewish people will be commanded to return to the land of their fathers (God’s land [Joel 3:2], typified by Jacob’s return to Bethel, “the house of God”).  And once back in the land, as following Jacob’s return, God will reaffirm the Abrahamic Covenant to Israel.

The Jewish people will be brought back into the land, possessing the wealth of the Gentiles (as Jacob returned to Bethel bearing Laban’s wealth).  And not only will Israel possess the Gentile’s wealth, but the Gentiles will be subservient to Israel, as Israel dwells in the most valuable piece of real estate on the face of the earth (cf. Isaiah 14:1-2; 60:10-12; 61:5-6 ASV).

Once back in the land, “Jacob’s” name was changed to Israel.  “Jacob” means, Supplanter; “Israel” means, a Prince with God.  And Esau, whose descendants were the bitter enemies of the Israelites during the wilderness journey under Moses, was no longer Jacob’s enemy (Genesis 34-35).

In that future day when Israel returns to the land, the nation will no longer be the crafty supplanter, but will be a Prince with God.  Nor will the descendants of Esau continue to be Israel’s enemy.  The land of Edom, as Babylon and Egypt, will be desolated because of “the violence against the children of Judah, because they have shed innocent blood in their land” (Egypt though only for the first forty years of the Messianic Era [Isaiah 19:5-9, 22-25; Jeremiah 49:17-18; Ezekiel 29:10-15; Joel 3:19]).  And any Edomites, as all other Gentiles entering the kingdom, will be subservient to Israel.

(For more information on the presently existing Middle East situation, along with God’s timing for His future restoration of the Jewish people to their land, refer to Appendixes 1 and 2 of the author’s book, in this site, The Time of the End BOOK — “The Intractable Middle East Problem,” and “The Death of the High Priest.”)

Jacob – A Type of Christ

Jacob, like Jesus, left his home and went into a far country.  And Jacob in this far country is seen obtaining a bride.

(Drawing from the previous type [Isaac and Rebekah in Genesis 24], the Son was seen remaining in heaven with the Father, while the Spirit was sent into the world to procure a bride for God’s Son.  Drawing from the account of Jacob and Rachel, another facet of the matter is presented.  The work of the Son is seen as well.  But the emphasis surrounding the Son’s role in the matter is placed upon His work leading into and surrounding Calvary, along with His work as High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary during the present dispensation.

Christ’s present work in the heavenly sanctuary is not part of the Spirit’s search for the bride on earth, though intimately associated with this search.  Christ is presently providing a cleansing, on the basis of His own blood on the mercy seat in the heavenly sanctuary, for the kingdom of priests, the king-priests, about to be brought forth.  And this kingdom of priests, these king-priests, would be synonymous with the bride for whom the Spirit presently searches.

Then, again, nothing has ever occurred or ever will occur apart from the Son.  He, within a correct Scriptural framework of viewing matters, cannot be separated from anything that occurs — past, present, or future [cf. John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:15-18].)

Jacob’s bride, as in the previous type (Isaac’s bride in Genesis 24), was to be taken only from the family of Abraham.  Jacob was specifically charged not to take a wife “of the daughters of Canaan,” exactly as Abraham had previously instructed his servant before sending him to acquire a bride for Isaac (Genesis 28:1; cf. Genesis 24:3).  And, as in the experiences of Isaac and Rebekah, this once again sets forth the truth that the bride is to be taken from the family of Abraham (from the saved), not from those represented by the Canaanites (the unsaved).

Jacob met Rachel by a well of water and fell in love with her (Genesis 29:6-18).  As with Rebekah, so with Rachel — the bride is taken from those who draw from the Well, from those who dwell deeply in the Word of God (ref. chapter 2 in this book).

Jacob became a servant and worked a total of fourteen years to obtain Rachel (Genesis 29:18-28).  Jesus, to obtain His bride, “made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.  And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:7-8).

After completing his commitment as a servant to Laban, Jacob took Rachel and returned to his own country (Genesis 31:17).  After the Lord Jesus Christ completes His commitment to the Father on behalf of His bride (servitude on earth, followed by His present high priestly ministry in heaven), Jesus will, like Jacob, take His bride to His own country — to heaven.  He will meet His bride somewhere between heaven and earth and then return to heaven with His bride (Genesis 24:61-67; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).

Here Comes the Bride

In the record of Jacob and his experiences, we’re given an insight into certain things concerning the servitude of Christ and the marriage of the Lamb that is not found in other types of the bride in Genesis.  The remainder of this chapter will center on these events.

1)  Two Sevens

After Jacob had left his home in Canaan and had journeyed to Padan Aram (a district of Mesopotamia, the country where Isaac’s bride had been procured) he met and fell in love with Rachel.  Jacob bargained with Laban, Rachel’s father, to serve him seven years for Rachel’s hand in marriage.  Laban agreed, and Jacob rendered seven years service.  At the completion of seven years, Jacob claimed his bride; but the rights of the firstborn prevailed.  Rachel had an older sister named Leah, who must be given in marriage first.  Jacob then found himself having to serve an additional seven years to obtain Rachel (Genesis 29:1-30).

“Seven” is one of the numbers showing completion.  It signifies the completeness of that which is in view.  In the type we have Jacob serving two complete periods of time to obtain Rachel.  In the antitype we have Jesus also serving two complete periods of time to obtain His bride.  One period was served in the office of “Prophet” during His earthly ministry, culminating in His death, burial, and resurrection.  The other period is presently being served in the office of “High Priest” in heaven.  This period will culminate immediately before He returns for His bride.

Jacob could not obtain Rachel at the termination of the first seven years because of the rights of primogeniture.  Nor could Jesus obtain His bride at the termination of the first period of servitude because of these same rights.  Israel is the firstborn, and Israel must be reckoned with first.

Jesus came to and sent His disciples only to “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 10:5-6; 15:24).  At the termination of His first complete period of servitude, Jesus rode into Jerusalem publicly presenting Himself as Israel’s King (Matthew 21:1ff).  However, Israel rejected the King and the attendant offer of the kingdom of the heavens.

The primogeniture claim held by Israel was satisfied, and the kingdom was taken from Israel (Matthew 21:43).  Jesus was crucified, and, following His resurrection, He ascended into heaven.  And, as Jacob, Christ is today serving an additional complete period of time to obtain His bride.

The present high priestly ministry of Christ in heaven is strictly on behalf of His bride, as Jacob’s second complete period of servitude was strictly on behalf of Rachel (though today all Christians would be included within the scope of Christ’s ministry, for the bride has yet to be singled out).  Christ’s present ministry in heaven has nothing to do with either Israel or the Gentiles, as Jacob’s second period of servitude had nothing to do with anyone but Rachel.  Christ is occupying the office of High Priest to effect a present cleansing for the kingdom of priests, the king-priests, which He is about to bring forth.  Jews or Gentiles can participate in this cleansing only by relinquishing their national identity and becoming new creations in Christ, i.e., by becoming Christians.

2)  The Wedding

In Jacob’s marriage to Leah at the termination of the first seven years, Jacob did not realize he had married the firstborn (Leah), rather than her younger sister (Rachel), until after the wedding.  Man’s failure to understand how this could happen, resulting in confusion concerning the coming marriage of the Lamb, stems from the difference in Eastern marriage customs of that day and those prevailing in the Western world today.

When Jacob went to claim his bride at the completion of the first seven years, “Laban gathered together all the men of the place and made a feast” (Genesis 29:22).  This is where the marriage occurred.  It was a legal transaction, and only the men were present.  The actual marriage transpired with the groom in one place and the bride in another.

The bride was then brought in and presented to the groom, “in the evening” (Genesis 29:23), after the marriage.  She was already Jacob’s wife at this time, and the only thing that remained was for the marriage to be consummated.  Thus, the reason Jacob didn’t recognize Leah at the wedding, realizing that he was marrying the wrong woman, is very simple:  Leah wasn’t present at the wedding.

We have this same thing set forth in the marriage of Boaz to Ruth in the book of Ruth.  The marriage took place in the presence of the men at the gate of the city while Ruth remained at home with Naomi, her mother-in-law from a previous marriage where Ruth’s husband had died (Ruth 3:18; 4:1-13).

It was all part of a legal transaction that was carried out at the gate of the city, where all legal transactions of this nature were carried out in that day.  When Boaz left the gate of the city, Ruth was his wife.  Nothing further was required.  He was then in a position to go to Naomi’s home to obtain Ruth, whom he had already married.

This same pattern will also be followed at the coming marriage of the Lamb.  The bride will not be present at the wedding.  After Jesus terminates His two complete periods of servitude, the marriage will occur.  The first complete period is past, and the second complete period will end immediately before Jesus descends from heaven to meet His bride in the air.

Jesus will shortly complete His present high priestly ministry, after the order of Aaron, on behalf of His bride.  The marriage will then occur through the redemption of the inheritance (Revelation 5:1ff), which will be a legal transaction between the Father and the Son, apart from the bride being present.  And, following the marriage supper of the Lamb and the completion of this redemptive work (Revelation 5:1ff), the bride will come forth with the Bridegroom — as His wife, as His consort queen — when He takes the scepter and rules over the redeemed inheritance.

The actual marriage ceremony itself, a legal transaction, is seen in the typology of Ruth chapters three and four as occurring following events surrounding the judgment seat (Ruth 3:6ff) and being intimately connected with the judgments of the Tribulation (Revelation 6:1ff).  Within the typology of Ruth 4, the judgments of the Tribulation have to do with the redemption of the forfeited inheritance.  And, in the type, the redemption of the inheritance is inseparably connected with Ruth becoming the wife of Boaz.  Through Boaz’s redemptive work surrounding the inheritance, Ruth became his wife.

One (the redemption of the inheritance) was part and parcel with the other (the redemption of Ruth’s widowhood, marriage).

And this is how it must also occur in the antitype, with the antitype following the type in exact detail.  The judgments that will occur during the Tribulation (revealed through the breaking of the seals of the seven-sealed scroll in Revelation 5) are seen being concluded at the end of Revelation chapter nineteen.  Then, immediately following the only true alleluia chorus that will ever be sung (Revelation 19:1-6), full attention will be directed to two things:  Christ’s bride, about to become His wife, and Christ’s return to complete His work surrounding the redemption of the inheritance (Revelation 19:7ff).

Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage [marriage festivities] of the Lamb has come, and His wife [bride] has made herself ready.

And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’”. . . 

Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. . . . (Revelation 19:7-9,11 [9a]).

The bride at the marriage festivities, in complete accord with the same timing of events seen in the type in Ruth 3; 4, can eagerly anticipate that which is about to occur — Christ completing His work surrounding the redemption of the inheritance (as Boaz completed his work), at which time the bride will become the Lamb’s wife (as Ruth became Boaz’s wife at this time).

(For additional information on the redemption of the inheritance and the bride becoming Christ’s wife through this redemptive work, refer to the author’s book, in this site, The Time of the End BOOK, chapters 8, 9.) 

The “fine linen” (Revelation 19:8), called the “wedding garment” in Matthew 22:11-12, will be worn by the bride to attend the wedding festivities.  Proper attire will be required in that day for entrance into the banqueting chamber (cf. Matthew 22:8-14).  And this attire — “fine linen” — will be comprised of the “righteous acts of the saints” (Revelation 19:8 ASV).

Note that Ruth had to prepare herself for meeting Boaz.  One part of this preparation consisted of being clothed in the proper apparel — “put on your best garment” (Ruth 3:3).

The coming Judgment Seat of Christ will reveal all things (1 Corinthians 3:12-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10-11).  Every Christian’s work will be tried “by fire,” with some works withstanding the fire, and some works being consumed by the fire.

Worthless works performed for the praise, honor, and glory of man — symbolized by “wood, hay, straw” — will be burned.  Christians possessing works of this nature will “suffer loss” and be saved “yet so as through fire.”  They will appear naked and ashamed in the presence of the Lord (Revelation 3:18).  They will not possess the type material to properly array themselves and, consequently, will be denied entrance into the banqueting chamber.

Works performed by other Christians for the praise, honor, and glory of the Lord — symbolized by “gold, silver, precious stones” — will endure the fire.  Christians possessing works of this nature will possess the type material necessary to properly clothe themselves for entrance into the banqueting chamber, where the marriage supper of the Lamb will occur.  Nakedness, accompanied by shame, will not be their lot.

Christians are presently being granted the privilege of working on their wedding garments, looking forward to the coming marriage supper of the Lamb.  The admonitions and warnings on this subject in Scripture are abundant and clear.

In the preceding respect, the question of the hour in Christian circles today is singular:  “Are you working on your wedding garment?

This thought should always be uppermost in the minds of Christians when they assemble together today, which is clearly seen in Hebrews 10:23-25:

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

and let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,

not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

There is no command in Scripture for Christians to assemble together apart from a specific, revealed purpose in view.  And this specific purpose for Christian assembly is revealed, in so many words, in Hebrews 10:23-25.

Christians are to assemble together in order to encourage one another in the race of the faith.  They are to assemble together in order to encourage one another relative to the hope set before them.  And such encouragement, of necessity, would have to center around the only place where information is provided on the subject — the Word of God.

The bride, through righteous acts emanating out of faithfulness, arrays herself, makes herself ready, for that which lies ahead.

Again, the question:  “Are you working on your wedding garment?

No improperly clothed Christian will attend the wedding festivities, as no uncrowned Christian will subsequently ascend the throne as consort queen with Christ.
Chapter Four
Joseph and Asenath
Beloved Son of the Father

(Chapters four through six will cover the overall scope of events in Genesis 37-45.  This section in Genesis is mainly about Joseph and his brethren, who typify Christ and the nation of Israel.  The correct position that Christ’s bride occupies in relation to His dealings with Israel is set forth in that which is revealed about the position that Joseph’s bride, Asenath, occupied in relation to his dealings with his brethren.)

This is the history of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers.  And the lad was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives; and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father.

Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age.  Also he made him a tunic of many colors.

But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him.

Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; and they hated him even more.

So he said to them, “Please hear this dream that I have dreamed:

“There we were, binding sheaves in the field. Then behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf.”

And his brothers said to him, “Shall you indeed reign over us?  Or shall you indeed have dominion over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. (Genesis 37:2-8)

The life of Joseph forms one of the most complete, overall types of Christ to be found in Scripture.  Joseph sets forth in type the beloved son of the father who was sent to his brethren, the son who was hated by his brethren, and the son who eventually found himself exalted over all Egypt.  And, being exalted over all Egypt, his brethren are seen coming into his presence and bowing before him.

Things pertaining to Christ, from His pre-incarnate existence with the Father to His future appearance in glory, are depicted in the experiences of Joseph.  In this respect, the life and times of Joseph in Genesis 37-45 set forth in type three main divisions pertaining to things foreshadowing Christ in the antitype:

1) Past History (with the Father in the beginning, and sent to His brethren about 2,000 years ago).

2) Present Position (exalted to the right hand of Power, with His brethren removed from the scene, during which time He takes a Gentile bride).

3) Future Glory (following His dealings with His brethren once again, His revelation to them, their bowing before Him).

Joseph – A Type

Some have questioned the authenticity of viewing Joseph as a type of Christ.  It is sometimes stated that Joseph should not be viewed in any special way as a type of Christ because nowhere in Scripture is it specifically recorded that Joseph is a type.  This though is not true at all.  There are at least three separate references that, when viewed in conjunction with related Scriptures, leave no room to question the validity of typological teachings drawn from the life and times of Joseph.

1)  Beginning at Moses

When Christ, following His resurrection, met the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, He began at “Moses and ALL the Prophets” and “expounded to them in ALL the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:27, 44; cf. John 1:45; 5:46).  The specific reference is made that ALL of the Old Testament Scriptures are about Christ, about different facets of His person and work.

The life and times of Joseph can only be about one thing.  They can only be about the life and times of Jesus the Christ, forming an integral part of the Word that was made Flesh (John 1:1-2, 14).

But how are the life and times of Joseph about the life and times of Christ?  How can the account of Joseph be part of that which was made Flesh in the person of God’s Son?

(That which these questions reflect upon will form the main subject matter of not only the remainder of this chapter but the two chapters that follow as well [chapters 5, 6].

Also, refer back to the introduction to this book, along with that which has been dealt with in the previous chapters [chapters 1-3].)

2)  All These Things

The apostle Paul called attention to the fact that all of the things that happened to the children of Israel under Moses “happened to them as examples [lit., ‘happened to them as types’]” (1 Corinthians 10:6, 11 [the Greek word tupoi, “types,” appears in both verses]).  The reference is to a number of events beginning following the death of the firstborn in Egypt (Exodus 12) and extending to the overthrow of an entire unbelieving generation in the wilderness (through Deuteronomy).

However, the reference, of necessity, by comparing Scripture with Scripture, would include far more than just these particular events.  It would have to include the entire panorama of events beginning in Exodus chapter twelve and continuing through Deuteronomy.

(For example, note that the author of Hebrews drew heavily from this section of Scripture [Hebrews 3; 4; 8-10] — Moses [type], Christ [antitype]; that which happened to unfaithful Israelites under Moses [type], that which would happen to unfaithful Christians under Christ [antitype]; the ministry of the Levitical priests in the earthly tabernacle [type], Christ’s present ministry in the heavenly sanctuary [antitype].

Also note that Hebrews 3; 4 [forming the second of the five major warnings in the book] form the basis for an understanding of the third major warning in Hebrews 6:4-6].  It is not possible to properly understand this third major warning in the book apart from placing the warning in its contextual setting and viewing the overall type from which the warning draws.)

But what about the remainder of Old Testament history?  Should it also be considered highly typical in nature?  In the light of Christ’s statements in Luke 24:25-27, 44; John 5:45-47, along with the evident structure of Old Testament history, one could come to only one conclusion:  The entirety of Old Testament history, through divine design, could only be viewed one way in this respect — the same way Paul described that section of Old Testament history detailing the experiences of the Israelites under Moses, as highly typical.

The experiences of Joseph constitute a type (actually, one overall type that forms numerous individual types).  And if not a type (or, types) of Christ, then who?  However, we’re not left to our own imagination to ascertain the answer.  The passage itself (Genesis 37:1ff) and related Scripture (e.g., Luke 24:27, 44) determine the issue for us.

3)  A Testimony

Joseph was a testimony (Psalm 81:5) among his brethren concerning not only the promise that God would one day deliver them from Egypt, but also the promise that God would one day visit them in the person of His Son.  The same Hebrew word translated testimony in Psalm 81:5 is used elsewhere in Scripture referring to the ark of the covenant (Exodus 31:7), the two tables of stone upon which the law was given (Exodus 31:18), and the entire tabernacle itself (Exodus 38:21).

Since everything in the tabernacle (a testimony) reflects on some aspect of the person and work of Christ in a type-antitype relationship (Hebrews 9:1ff; 1 John 1:6-2:2), the same could only be said about Joseph (a testimony), particularly in the light of Luke 24:25-27, 44; John 5:45-47.  Not only does everything about the tabernacle typify some aspect of the person and work of Christ, but everything about the life of Joseph also typifies some aspect of the person and work of Christ.  The fact that certain things occurred in the life of Joseph, forming the type, sets forth, in no uncertain terms, the fact that these same things will also occur in the experiences of God’s Son in the antitype.

Christians who desire to know about the past history, present position, and future glory of God’s Son can find innumerable truths concerning these things in the life and times of Joseph.

Then, even in death Joseph remained a testimony among his brethren.  When Joseph died he was placed in a coffin in Egypt.  This coffin remained in the camp of Israel, UNBURIED, for about two hundred years (about one hundred forty years in Egypt, forty more years during the wilderness journey under Moses, and the subsequent years in the land under Joshua until Joseph was eventually buried [about twenty-five additional years]).  Joseph had known that God would one day visit his brethren, lead them out of Egypt, and place them back in the land of Canaan.  And he had specifically instructed the Israelites that His bones were to be carried out of Egypt with them at the time of the Exodus (Genesis 50:24-26).

The Israelites possessed no written Revelation during their stay in Egypt.  Today we can turn to the Word of God and read the promises of God, but this was not the case before the Exodus and subsequent Revelation given through Moses.  The Israelites, however, had a coffin during this time that contained the bones of Joseph; and within these bones in that coffin they possessed God’s promise of deliverance from Egypt.

Thus, this coffin containing Joseph’s bones, in one respect, was Israel’s Bible in Egypt for about one hundred and forty years.  This coffin in their midst was the only tangible revelation which they possessed.

It is conceivable that during this time an Israelite father could take his son to a certain place in the camp of Israel, point to the coffin of Joseph, and instruct his son concerning the coming deliverance from Egypt, which itself is a type of the future deliverance from a worldwide dispersion by the One greater than Moses.

In this future deliverance, Old Testament saints will be raised from the dead and accompany the living back to the land.  This fact is set forth in biblical typology in the person of Joseph — the dead returned with the living.

When Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt, the coffin containing the bones of Joseph was carried out with them (Exodus 13:19).  This coffin remained UNBURIED in the camp of Israel throughout the forty-year wilderness journey, and continued as a testimony during this time that God would ultimately lead His people into the land of Canaan.  The bones of Joseph were buried only AFTER the Israelites entered into and possessed the land of Canaan, five generations later, about two hundred years after his death in Egypt (Joshua 24:32).

The record of Joseph continues today as one of God’s great testimonies concerning His Son and His promises.  Joseph, like Daniel later in Babylon, was faithful to God in a strange land, and God always rewards faithfulness.  Consider for a moment where Joseph would be in the annals of biblical history if he had been unfaithful in Potiphar’s house (Genesis 39:1-19), in prison (Genesis 39:20-41:36), or on the throne (Genesis 41:37ff).  But such was not the case.  Joseph was faithful in every recorded experience God brought to pass in his life, and God has set him forth as a testimony in things relating to His Son.

Thus, in life, Joseph’s experiences were a testimony for the Israelites by forming a type of subsequent things that Christ would experience in the antitype.  And, in death, Joseph’s bones remained a testimony to the Israelites for generations that God would visit and deliver His people.

Then there is a future aspect, seen not only in that which will follow deliverance (blessings for the Israelites), but in the person of Joseph himself, apart from typology.  Joseph is going to one day be raised from the dead, live on this earth again, and see with his own eyes that to which his experiences pointed.  Joseph is going to see God’s Son exalted in fulfillment of the things which were typified by his experiences millennia ago.

Joseph is going to one day stand again in the land of Canaan among his brethren, and see for himself — with his own eyes, and not those of anotherthe glory of the One whom his experiences have stood as a type for millennia (cf. Job 19:25-27).  He is going to see Christ exalted over the entire world (as he was exalted over all Egypt); he is going to see Christ’s brethren (who hated Christ, as they had hated him) come and bow before Christ (as they had done in his presence); and he is going to see Christ’s brethren going forth with the same message that Joseph’s brethren went forth proclaiming in his day:

. . . Joseph is still alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt . . . . (Genesis 45:26)

“Jesus is yet alive, and He is Governor over all the earth” (cf. Psalm 24; Isaiah 52:6-9; 53:1ff).

A. W. Pink in his incomparable commentary on Genesis lists no less than one hundred and one specific analogies in the type-antitype relationship existing between Joseph and Jesus.  Other great Bible scholars of past years who possessed an appreciation for types, such as F. B. Meyer and Andrew Jukes, list additional analogies in books written on this section of Genesis.  And there are far, far more analogies that can be gleaned from Scripture by one who has a mind for the study of types.

The words of A. T. Robertson relative to the Greek New Testament would equally apply to the field of biblical typology in this respect:

“The Greek New Testament has a message for each mind.  Some of the truth in it has never yet been seen by anyone else.  It is waiting like a virgin forest to be explored.  It is fresh for every mind that explores it, for those who have passed this way before have left it all here.  It still has on it the dew of the morning and is ready to refresh the newcomer.”

In the remainder of this chapter and the two subsequent chapters on Joseph, a number of these analogies will be listed and briefly discussed.  The reader can then conduct his own study concerning Joseph, which, in itself, is an inexhaustible study concerning Christ.

Joseph, the Beloved Son of the Father (Genesis 37:3-11)

1)  The son of his father’s old age (v. 3)

“Old age” in typology speaks of eternity, Jesus has been God’s Son from eternity.  He has no “beginning of days nor end of life” (John 1:1; Hebrews 7:3).

2)  Loved more than any of Jacob’s other sons (v. 3)

God has many Sons.  Because of creation, all “angels” are sons of God (Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7); through creation and adoption, “Israel” is God’s son, His firstborn (Exodus 4:22; Isaiah 43:1; Romans 9:4); and Christians, presently looked upon in the sense of both “children” and “sons” (because of creation [2 Corinthians 5:17; cf. Romans 8:14; Galatians 3:26; 4:5-6; Hebrews 12:5-8]), will one day be adopted (as Israel) and constitute a firstborn son as well (Romans 8:14-23; Hebrews 12:23).

But Jesus has always been God’s Son.  He has been, and remains, God’s Son from eternity.  All other sons have come into their standing during time (not eternity), and all these sons occupy their position through either creation (sons) or creation and adoption (firstborn sons).

Jesus though is God’s “ONLY BEGOTTEN SON” (John 3:16), providing Him with the firstborn standing (Hebrews 1:6) that adoption has provided for Israel and will, yet future, provide for Christians.

3)  Received a coat from his father (Genesis 37:3)

The words “many colors” (KJV, NKJV) are not found in the Hebrew text.  This was a long-sleeved cloak — possibly solid white — which extended not only to the wrists but also to the ankles.  This was not a garment designed for work, but rather a garment designed to set the individual forth as an overseer or a superior, a garment designed to distinguish him from a laborer, or a servant.

“This sort of robe was worn by the opulent and noble, by kings’ sons, and by those who had no need to toil for their living.”  — F. B. Meyer

Just as Jacob placed his elder son born of Rachel in this position, God has placed His eldest Son — His only begotten Son — in this position.  Jesus is the “appointed Heir of all things” (Hebrews 1:2).  He has been “highly exalted” by the father and “given a name which is above every name” (Philippians 2:9-11).  And following His return, He will not only rule over His brethren, the Israelites, but also over the Gentile nations of the earth as well (Daniel 2:35, 44; Luke 1:32-33).

4)  Hated by his brethren (Genesis 37:4, 7-9)

Joseph was hated because of his father’s special love, and because of his dreams and words.  They thus hated him because of who he was, the position in which his dreams placed him, and what he said.

Joseph had two dreams (Genesis 37:7, 9).  Both dreams pertained to his dominion over his brethren.  The first dream was about sheaves in a field and had to do with an earthly dominion.  The second dream was about the sun, moon, and stars and had to do with a heavenly dominion.

Jesus was hated by His brethren because of who He was, the position in which His message placed Him, and what He said (Matthew 26:59-68; 27:17-18; John 5:18; 7:7).

During the Messianic Era, Jesus will have an earthly dominion and a heavenly dominion.  All authority in heaven and on earth has already been given to Christ, though He will not exercise this authority until that future day when He takes the scepter and ascends the throne (Matthew 28:18; cf. Genesis 22:17; 26:4; 28:14).

Joseph Sent to His Brethren (Genesis 37:13-16)

1)  Sent out from the vale of Hebron to seek and to find his brethren (Genesis 37:13-14)

Jacob, concerned about the welfare of his other sons, sent Joseph to find them.  Joseph willingly accepted the commission of his father to go to his brethren.

Joseph was sent from “the vale of Hebron.”  “Hebron” means fellowship, or communion; and the “vale” suggests the place of peace and quiet in this fellowship and communion with the father.

God is concerned about the welfare of His son, Israel.  He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus, to His created and adopted son, Israel, in time past; and Jesus will be sent back to Israel once again at a time yet future in order to bring to pass that which could not be brought to pass at His first coming.

Jesus, in time past, willingly laid aside His glory and face to face fellowship and communion with the Father in heaven and accepted the commission to go to His brethren (John 17:5, 18; Hebrews 10:7).  At a time yet future, Jesus will appear to His brethren once again; but this time He will appear in their presence in all His power and glory.

2)  Sent to and sought only his brethren (Genesis 37:13-16)

Jesus, likewise, was sent to and sought only His brethren.  Jesus “came to His own [neuter pl. in the Greek text — lit., ‘His own things,’ having to do with regality], and his own [masculine pl. in the Greek text — lit., ‘His own people,’ the Jewish people] did not receive Him” (John 1:11).  When commissioning the twelve disciples Jesus specifically commanded them:  “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans.  But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 10:5-6).

Jesus declared in Matthew 15:24, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”  The Gentiles could have no part in the Father’s purpose for sending His Son until Israel had been dealt with first.

3)  Wandered about in the field seeking his brethren (Genesis 37:15)

“The field” (as “Egypt”) signifies the world (Matthew 13:38).  Jesus became a Wanderer, a Man without a home in the world, while seeking His brethren:  “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head” (Luke 9:58).  Note John 7:53-8:1:  “And every man went unto his own house,” but “Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.”

Joseph Finds His Brethren (Genesis 37:16-19)

1)  Sought his brethren until he found them (Genesis 37:16-17)

For three and one-half years Jesus went about seeking His brethren, proclaiming the same message that Joseph had proclaimed, which had to do with regality.  And this, as when Joseph had proclaimed this message, resulted in His brethren hating Him:

Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; and they hated him even more.

So he said to them, “Please hear this dream which I have dreamed:

There we were, binding sheaves in the field. Then behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf.”

And his brothers said to him, “Shall you indeed reign over us? Or shall you indeed have dominion over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. (Genesis 37:5-8).

2)  Found his brethren in Dothan (Genesis 37:17)

Some Hebrew scholars understand Dothan to mean “law,” or “custom”; others understand the word to mean “two wells.”

Jesus found His brethren dwelling under the bondage of the law and bound by the customs and rituals of the religious leaders of that day (Matthew 15:1-3; 16:6).  He also found them dwelling by two wells.  Note Jeremiah 2:13:

For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, And hewn themselves cisterns-broken cisterns that can hold no water.

The Jews had deserted the Well of Living Water and were drawing from a well that had no water.

The Response of Joseph’s Brethren (Genesis 37:18-36)

1)  Refused to receive him and conspired against him.  His words concerning his dreams were not believed (Genesis 37:5-9, 18-20)

The Jews rejected Jesus and conspired against Him.  They attributed His miraculous signs — which bore visible witness to the nation of Israel concerning the message being proclaimed — to the power of Satan (Matthew 9:34; 12:24).  The Phariseesplotted against Him, how they might destroy Him” (Matthew 12:14).  And immediately before and during His crucifixion the religious leaders in Israel spat upon, beat, and mocked their Messiah (Matthew 26:63-67; 27:39-43).  They, like the brethren of Joseph, did not believe His words.

2)  Sold by his brethren to the Gentiles for twenty pieces of silver.  Judah is the one who conceived this thought (Genesis 37:26-28)

Jesus was betrayed and sold by Judas, one of His brethren, for thirty pieces of silver (John 13:21-27; Matthew 26:14-15).  The name Judas comes from the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew name “Judah.”  The One who had been born King, from the tribe of Judah, was then delivered into the hands of the Gentiles by His brethren.

3)  Stripped of his coat and cast into a pit (Genesis 37:23-24)

Jesus was stripped of His garments and arrayed as a mock King, wearing a scarlet robe, a crown of thorns, and holding a reed in His right hand (Matthew 27:28-29).  And the Roman soldiers who had ridiculed Christ in this manner then crucified Him and cast lots for His garments (Matthew 27:35).

Following His death, Jesus descended into the pit.  And He was in the heart of the earth — in Hades, the place of the dead — for “three days and three nights” (Matthew 12:40; Acts 2:27-31).

4)  Taken out of the pit alive (Genesis 37:28)

Jesus was also taken out of the pit, out of Hades, alive.  He was raised from the dead on the third day, and, like Joseph, in a body of flesh and bones, stood among His brethren (Matthew 28:6, 9; Luke 24:36-39).

5)  Thought to be dead by one of his brethren (Genesis 37:20-21, 29)

The brethren of Jesus, the Jews, today likewise believe that He is dead.  Only those whose eyes have been opened know and understand the truth about Jesus (Luke 24:31; Romans 11:25).

6)  His coat dipped in the blood of a slain ram (Genesis 37:31-35)

The ram died in Joseph’s place.  This coat with the blood was then presented to Jacob, and he accepted this as evidence of Joseph’s death.

Jesus has presented His own blood to the Father.  He Himself is our Substitute, and the Father has accepted His blood (showing death) as evidence of our death (a vicarious death).  Thus, those who have placed their trust in Jesus Christ have already kept the appointment with death (Hebrews 9:27-28).

Joseph Rejected – Jesus Rejected

Individuals often wonder why the nation of Israel rejected her Messiah when He appeared the first time.

Israel was in possession of the Word of God, which, in its entirety, was about the person and work of the One they rejected.  This Revelation presented innumerable types of the coming Messiah, along with information giving the place of His appearance, the approximate time of His appearance, and that which would happen following His appearance (Micah 5:2; Daniel 9:24-27; Isaiah 53:1-12).

Why were Herod the king and the inhabitants of Jerusalem troubled when the wise men from the East appeared in the capital of Jewry saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him” (Matthew 2:2-3).  This Star (His star) was apparently identified by the wise men as the “Star out of Jacob” (Numbers 24:17), which would signal the birth of Israel’s Messiah.  The wise men knew that the Messiah was present; Herod knew; and the truth of the matter is that the religious leaders in Israel also knew.

It is understandable why Herod was troubled.  His position on the throne was endangered by the arrival of the Jewish King.

But why were the Jews in “all Jerusalem” troubled?  This should have been good news for them.  They were under Roman rule, and the Deliverer promised time after time throughout the past 4,000 years of human history was at last present.  The Messianic Era — wherein Gentile rule would end and Israel would be established at the head of the nations — could shortly be ushered in.  But, instead of joy among the inhabitants of Jerusalem, they were troubled.

Over the years preceding Christ’s appearance, many false Messiahs had appeared to the nation of Israel.  But the Jewish people had largely ignored these individuals.  They knew that they were false.  But when Jesus appeared, things were different.  The Jewish people could only have known that it was about time for their Messiah to appear (cf. Daniel 9:24-27), and when He did appear, they were troubledThey were not ready for His appearance, and would not have this Man to reign over them (John 19:15).

Herod, who was only a Jew indirectly (an Edomite who had embraced Judaism), tried to kill Jesus shortly after His birth;  and the religious leaders in Israel later spent three and one-half years trying to do away with Jesus.

The same situation that existed in Israel 2,000 years ago exists, as well, in Christendom today.  The Jewish people were in possession of the Word and could know the things that God had revealed about the Messiah’s first appearance.  Christians today are in possession of the Word and can know the things that God has revealed about the Messiah’s reappearance.  The Jewish people sought to put the day of Messiah’s appearance far from them.  And Christians today, concerning Messiah’s reappearance, are little different.

An apostate Judaism marked the closing days of that dispensation, and an apostate Christianity marks the closing days of this present dispensation (Matthew 23:1ff; 1 Timothy 4:1-2; 1 Thessalonians 2:3).  The condition of the Church at the end of the present dispensation is set forth in the degenerate condition of the Laodicean Church in Revelation 3:14-21, and the reason for this can be seen in the first four parables of Matthew 13.

Why are Christians troubled when the coming of the Lord is mentioned?  Why is this message, so prevalent throughout Scripture, seldom proclaimed in the majority of pulpits throughout the land?  The answer is the same in Christendom today as it was in the camp of Israel 2,000 years ago.  The Jewish people were not ready for the Messiah’s appearance then, and Christians are not ready for the Messiah’s reappearance today.

Instead of joy among Christians, as should exist when the return of the Lord is proclaimed, trouble reigns supreme.  Christians are unprepared for the intervention of the Messiah in the affairs of man once again, and they don’t want to hear about it.  The return of the Lord will put an end to all of man’s plans, hopes, aims, ambitions, and aspirations performed apart from the power and leadership of the Holy Spirit.

The religious leaders in Israel should have been preparing the people to meet their Messiah.  But they were not, and, consequently, the people were not ready.

Religious leaders today should be preparing the people to meet their Messiah.  But they are not, and, consequently, the people will not be ready.

Joseph was mocked by his brethren because of his dreams concerning dominion over them, and they tried to do away with him (Genesis 37:8, 20-36).

The chief priests, scribes, and elders in Israel, in like manner, mocked Christ concerning His prophesied dominion over them, and they tried to do away with Him (Matthew 26:59; 27:20-22, 39-43).

And the situation is no different in Christendom today.  Many are openly belittling truths concerning the coming reign of Christ over the earth.  They, like the Jews in time past, will have nothing to do with the Kingship of Jesus.

But, as will be shown in the subsequent two chapters, the type (the history of Joseph in Egypt) places Joseph and his brethren in exactly the position set forth in his dreams — Joseph exalted (over all Egypt), with his brethren bowing down before him.  And this alone necessitates a future fulfillment in the antitype in the person of Christ and the nation of Israel.
Chapter Five
Joseph and Asenath
Hated by His Brethren

(In Chapter 4, Joseph was seen as the beloved son of the father but hated and rejected by his brethren, who sold him for the price of a young slave, for “twenty pieces of silver” [lit., “twenty shekels of silver,” referring to weights of silver, not coins (Genesis 37:28; cf. Leviticus 27:5)].

In the antitype it is Jesus who is seen as the beloved Son of the Father but hated and rejected by His brethren, who sold Him for the price of an adult slave, for “thirty pieces of silver” [Matthew 27:3-7; cf. Exodus 21:32; Zechariah 11:12-13].

God moved in the affairs of man, bringing these things to pass in the life of Joseph in order that He might have these experiences to draw upon in teaching Christians the deep things of God.  God made the type to provide additional light for the antitype.  God brought these things to pass in order to foreshadow and help explain great spiritual truths concerning His plans and purposes surrounding both His Son and Man [cf. Psalm 81:5; Luke 24:27; John 5:39, 46; 1 Corinthians 10:6, 11].)

Following chapter thirty-seven in Genesis there is a break in the revealed chain of events covering the life of Joseph.  In chapter thirty-eight God has seen fit to reveal certain things in the life of Judah before taking up the experiences of Joseph in the land of Egypt, beginning in chapter thirty-nine.  On the surface, chapter thirty-eight would appear to have little connection with the life of Joseph, but such is not the case.

In this chapter, the experiences of Judah foreshadow the history of the Jewish people following their rejection and crucifixion of Jesus the Christ.  This historical period — set forth in a type-antitype framework of events — which follows the events of Calvary (Genesis 37), covers the entire two days (2,000 years) during which Israel’s Messiah is absent from the land of Judea (separated from His brethren according to the flesh) and leads into the Messianic Kingdom.

Two aspects of the history of Israel are seen in this chapter.  One aspect provides an overall future history of the Jewish people; and the other is a continuing aspect of Israeli history, having to do with Israel’s harlotry, which had begun centuries earlier.  Both aspects of this history cover the period that begins immediately following Calvary and leads into the Messianic Kingdom 2,000 years later.

Israel – From Calvary to the Kingdom (Genesis 38:1-30)

Judah married a Gentile woman, Shuah, whose name means “riches.”  Out of this union three sons were born:  The first son was named Er, which means “enmity”; the second son was named Onan, which means “iniquity”; the third son was named Shelah, which means “sprout.”  And Shelah was born in Chezib, which means “false.”

Judah’s marriage to a Gentile — Shuah, whose name means “riches” — following the events of chapter thirty-seven sets forth in type the fact that following the rejection, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus the Christ, Israel has gone out among the Gentiles, seeking wealth, riches.

The first son, Er (meaning “enmity”), signifies that enmity against Christ is what has marked the Jewish people down through the centuries following Calvary.

The second son, Onan (meaning “iniquity”), sets forth the state in which the nation found herself following Calvary.  Israel, though already unclean through harlotry, found herself in a further unclean condition — unclean through contact with the dead body of her Messiah; and the nation must remain in this unclean condition for two days (for 2,000 years).

Israel is presently separated from her temple and the sacrificial system connected with the temple, leaving the nation separated from the fulfillment of all Old Testament sacrifices — pointing to the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Israel has slain the Lamb, but has yet to apply the blood (through belief).  Israel, by sacrificing the Lamb apart from applying the blood, found herself separated from the efficacy of that sacrifice — cleansing, followed by reconciliation.  And Israel cannot avail herself of cleansing, subsequently being reconciled to God, until the third day — the third one-thousand-year period following the offense (Numbers 19:11-12).

(Actually, Israel will be cleansed of all her uncleanness at the end of two days, at the end of 2,000 years, immediately preceding the Messianic Era [Daniel 9:24].)

The third son, Shelah (meaning “sprout”), born in Chezib (meaning “false”), points to something taking place in the life of Israel when the nation is small among the nations and everything is untrue, false.  This can only point to a time at the end of this age — during the last seven years of Daniel’s Seventy-Week prophecy — when a small nation in the Middle East, the nation of Israel, will be confronted by the false Messiah, the man of sin.  The Jews rejected the true Messiah, who came in His Father’s name; but they will receive the false Messiah, who will come in his own name (John 5:43; 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12).

During the Tribulation, when the man of sin is on the scene, there will be a division in the house of Israel.  One segment of the nation will receive the false Messiah, but the other segment will reject him (note that “many,” not all, will receive this man [Daniel 9:27]).

The type that is dealing with this fact is set forth by the twins whom Tamar bore in Genesis 38:27-30.

At the time of birth, one twin put forth his hand from the womb and the midwife tied a scarlet thread about his hand to identify the firstborn.  However, his hand was drawn back into the womb and the other child, which was named Pharez, was born first.  Pharez means “breach,” and points to that segment of the nation that will climax their breach with God by receiving the man of sin.

The second son, who was named Zerah, meaning “dawn,” possessed the scarlet thread and points to that segment of the nation that will reject the man of sin, looking forward to the dawn of a new day.

“Zerah” points to the remnant that will pass through the time of Jacob’s trouble (many in a place prepared by God [Isaiah 26:20; Revelation 12:6]) and be saved out of the destruction that will come upon the world, as Rahab, who, by the display of a scarlet cord, was saved from the destruction that befell Jericho (Joshua 2:18-19; 6:17, 25; Hebrews 11:31).

Israel — The Harlot Woman (Genesis 38:12-26)

Judah, in the type, is seen marrying a Gentile woman and later having illicit relations with his own daughter-in-law (Genesis 38:2, 12ff), with far-reaching ramifications.  Judah’s action foreshadows Israel in the antitype, having illicit relations with the Gentile nations, also with far-reaching ramifications.  Repentance is ultimately seen by Judah in the type (Genesis 38:24-26), as it will one day occur in the camp of Israel in the antitype (Hosea 2:2-3; 14:1, 4, 8).

Israel, the wife of Jehovah in the Old Testament theocracy, began to have forbidden relations with the Gentile nations very early in Jewish history, committing harlotry.  This early beginning of Israel’s harlotry is seen particularly in the book of Judges where Israel, time after time, found herself involved with Gentile nations, with God sending a deliverer each time following the nation’s repentance.

But the day finally came when Israel’s cup of iniquity became full (cf. Genesis 15:16), and God allowed Gentile nations to uproot His people from their land and take them captive into Gentile lands (the northern ten tribes in 722 B.C. and the southern two tribes in 605 B.C.), with deliverance awaiting their repentance and Messiah’s return.

(For more information on Israel’s harlotry, refer to the author’s books, Bible One - The Time of Jacob’s Trouble by Arlen Chitwood [the entire book deals with this subject] and, in this site, The Time of the End BOOK [chapters 27, 28 — “The Beast and the Woman,” and “Judgment of the Great Whore”].)

Israel Set Aside (Genesis 39-41)

(Beginning in Genesis 39, Scripture provides commentary for that which is seen in both Genesis 37 and Genesis 38.

A structure of this nature is something seen quite often throughout Scripture.  A complete sequence of events will be given, and Scripture will then drop back and provide commentary on different things presented in the complete sequence.

This is actually the way Scripture is structured as a whole.  The complete sequence of events is given in Genesis 1:1-2:3.  Then, the remainder of Scripture is simply a commentary on different things previously presented in the complete sequence, with the Sabbath day, the Messianic Era, always seen as the goal toward which everything moves.)

Following the account of the experiences of Judah throughout chapter thirty-eight — which typifies an overall history of Israel extending from Calvary to the Kingdom, along with Israel’s continued harlotry throughout this time — the type of Christ from chapter thirty-seven is continued in chapter thirty-nine through Joseph’s continued experiences.  The type from this point throughout the remaining chapters sets forth:

1) Jesus in the hands of the Gentiles following His rejection by Israel.

2) The Gentile aspect of the crucifixion, death, burial, and resurrection.

3) The intervening 2,000-year period, during which time Jesus is separated from His brethren according to the flesh, and takes to Himself a Gentile bride.

4) The time of the Tribulation, which will come upon the entire earth.

5) The time when Jesus reveals Himself to His brethren the second time, followed by national blessings for Israel and blessings for the Gentile nations of the earth through the restored Jewish nation.

In Genesis 39 there is a new beginning in the type.  Genesis 37 sets forth the Jewish aspect of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ.  Chapter 39 begins the Gentile aspect, covering these same events once again (cf. Acts 4:25-28); and the type is continued in the following chapters through the present dispensation on into the next, into the Messianic Era.

Joseph’s brethren are noticeably absent throughout chapters thirty-nine through forty-one, and they do not reappear until that time when a famine comes upon the entire land and they are forced to go to Joseph (Genesis 42:1ff).

Israel was set aside following the rejection of Christ, and the nation will not reappear in God’s national dealings until a famine (the Tribulation) is upon the entire land once again and the Jewish people (as Joseph’s brethren) are forced to turn to the One whom they rejected (cf. Hosea 5:15-6:2).

The Servitude of Joseph (Genesis 39:1-6)

1)  Brought down to Egypt and became a servant in Potiphar’s house.  The Lord caused all that Joseph did to prosper, and he gained favor in Potiphar’s sight (Genesis 39:1-4)

Jesus was sent to this earth, very God of very God, “but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant . . . .”  The Lord caused all that He did to prosper, and Jesus “increased . . . in favor with God and man” (Isaiah 53:10; Luke 2:52; Philippians 2:5-7).

2)  Placed over all that his master possessed.  Because of Joseph, the blessings of the Lord were upon all in the “house” and in the “field” (Genesis 39:5)

Jesus was born King of the Jews (born King in the “house” of Israel [Matthew 2:2; 10:6]), and He purchased those in the “field” (the world [Matthew 13:38, 45ff]) with His own blood.  It is only because of Jesus, a Jew, that the blessings of the Lord extend to those in both the house and the field today (Genesis 12:3).  The entire world, after a measure, enjoys the blessings of the Lord today, though not in their fullness.  The time when these blessings will be manifested in their fullness will be during the Messianic Era.

3)  All of the master’s possessions placed in Joseph’s hands (Genesis 39:6)

The Father has placed all that He possesses in the Son’s hands.  The Son has been appointed “Heir of all things” (Hebrews. 1:2; cf. Genesis 24:10, 36), and this inheritance will be received at the end of the present age and realized during the coming age.

The Temptation of Joseph (Genesis 39:7-18)

1)  Tempted, but sinned not.  Joseph was alone in a strange land when he was tempted by the wife of the captain of Pharaoh’s guard (Genesis 39:7-13)

Jesus was tempted while alone in the wilderness by the prince of this world (Matthew 4:1-11).  Jesus, the eternal Son of God, sinned not because He could not sin.  He possessed no inward lust (which would have necessitated a sin nature), and was thus incapable of sinning (James 1:14-15).  Jesus wasn’t tempted to sin.  He couldn’t be tempted in this manner, because God cannot be tempted with evil (James 1:13).  He was “in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (lit. “apart from sin” — i.e., apart from being tempted to sin).

The face to face encounter between Jesus and Satan in the wilderness was necessary because of that which occurred 4,000 years earlier in the garden in Eden.

The first man, the first Adam, through an encounter with Satan, found himself in a fallen state and no longer qualified to ascend into the position for which he had been created (Genesis 1:26-28; 3:7ff).

Jesus, the second Man, the last Adam, met Satan in the wilderness to show once and for all that He was fully qualified as the eternal, impeccable Son of God to redeem that which the first Adam had lost in the fall.  Jesus then bore the sins of the world in His own body on Calvary’s Cross to both effect man’s redemption (2 Corinthians 5:21) and to place Himself in a position where the forfeited inheritance (the earth) could subsequently be redeemed as well (cf. Ruth 4:1ff; Psalm 2:1ff; Romans 8:14ff; Revelation 5:1ff).

2)  Falsely accused in order to remove him from Potiphar’s house (Genesis 39:14-18)

Jesus was falsely accused in order to remove Him from the house of Israel (Matthew 26:59-60).

The Sentence of Joseph (Genesis 30:16-40:23)

1)  Suffered the wrath of his master for sin, though he was not guilty.  Potiphar’s wrath was kindled, but noticeably absent are the words, “against Joseph” (Genesis 39:19-20)

Jesus suffered the wrath of His Father for sin, though He was not guilty.  The Father’s wrath was kindled against sin, not against His Son.  The Son bore our sins in His own body at Calvary (Isaiah 53:5-6; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:24).

2)  Offered no defense, though completely innocent (Genesis 39:19-20)

Jesus offered no defense, though completely innocent (Isaiah 53:7; Matthew 27:12-14).

3)  Joseph was put in prison.  It is evident that Potiphar did not believe the accusation against Joseph since he did not order him put to death (Genesis 39:20)

Jesus was put in prison, in the place of death.  Pilate, like Potiphar, did not believe the accusation against Jesus (Matthew 27:22-26).

4)  All that were in the prison were committed into Joseph’s hands (Genesis 39:22-23)

All that are in the place of death have been committed into Jesus’ hands.  Jesus possesses the “keys of Hades and of death” (Revelation 1:18).  The resurrection of all individuals (saved and unsaved alike) will take place only because the Son has been raised from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:20-24).  And all judgment following resurrection will take place at the hands of the Son (John 5:22).

5)  Joseph was numbered with the transgressors.  Two individuals are singled out who were placed in prison with Joseph.  One fared well; the other did not (Genesis 40:1-23)

Jesus was numbered with the transgressors.  Two malefactors were crucified with Christ.  Two thieves were brought in later and also crucified with Him.  One of the malefactors fared well; the other did not.  Neither of the thieves fared well (Isaiah 53:11; Matthew 27:33-35; Mark 15:22-37; Luke 23:26-46; John 19:16-26).

(The malefactors and the thieves, crucified with Christ, are often viewed as being the same two individuals, but this cannot be correct.  In Matthew’s and Mark’s accounts of the crucifixion, the two thieves were crucified with Him after the inscription, “This is Jesus of Nazareth the King of the Jews,” was placed above His head.  In Luke’s account, the two malefactors were crucified with Him before this inscription was placed above His head.  In John’s account, the order is the same as Luke’s, but they are simply called “two others.”

The word translated “malefactor” is a broader word in the Greek text than the word translated “thief.”  A malefactor can be a thief, but he can also be guilty of numerous other crimes.  Different Greek words are also used to describe the manner in which the thieves and malefactors spoke to Jesus.  Both thieves spoke “reproachfully”; one malefactor spoke “blasphemously”;  the other malefactor — often mistakenly called the repentant thief — believed that Jesus was the Messiah of Israel, and concluded his remarks with the request, “Lord, remember me when you come into your kingdom” [Matthew 27:44; Luke 23:39-42]).

The Deliverance of Joseph (Genesis 41:1-36)

While in prison Joseph interpreted the dreams of two individuals numbered with him.  One was restored to his prior position, and the other was hanged, both as Joseph had foretold.

Later the Pharaoh of Egypt dreamed two dreams, and none of the magicians or wise men in Egypt could make known the interpretation.  The Pharaoh was then told about Joseph’s ability to interpret dreams by the one who had been in prison with Joseph and had been restored to his prior position.

Joseph was then called forth from prison to make known the interpretation of Pharaoh’s dreams.  As in the experience of Nebuchadnezzar and his dream about the great image (Daniel 2:1ff), or the experience of Belshazzar and the handwriting on the wall (Daniel 5:5ff), the wisdom of Egypt and Babylon were of no avail in the things of God.  In each instance a Jew had to be called forth to make known the message from God.

A Jewish connection with the Revelation of God after this fashion has been in effect since the time that the Hebrew people were called into existence.  According to Psalm 147:19-20,

He declares His word to Jacob, His statutes and His judgments to Israel.

He has not dealt thus with any nation [Gentile]; and as for His judgments, they have not known them. Praise the LORD!

According to Romans 3:1-2; 9:4, the “Oracles of God” were committed to the Jews.  The Word of God that we have today came through Jewish prophets, beginning with Moses.  No part of the Bible, through its own internal testimony, could possibly have been given through a Gentile (as some look upon Luke, who wrote both the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts).  Psalms 147:19-20 provides God’s own statement concerning the national origin of ALL those who wrote ALL Scripture.

1)  Called forth from prison to make known future events (Genesis 41:14-28)

Jesus was called forth from the place of death and made known future events.  The resurrection of Christ itself sets forth future events.  The resurrection of Christ — God’s firstborn Son — took place after two days, on the third day.  This sets forth the fact that all of God’s firstborn Sons — Christ, Israel, and the Church (following the adoption) — will be raised up after two days, on the third day.  It will be after two days, on the third day — after two thousand years, on the third one-thousand-year period — that Christ will enter into His glory, accompanied by both restored Israel and His wife (cf. Luke 9:32; 24:26; John 11:6-7, 43-44).

Following His resurrection, Jesus spent forty days instructing His disciples in things pertaining to “the kingdom of God” (Acts 1:3).  Then, following His ascension, Jesus appeared to Paul in the Arabian Desert and personally instructed him concerning future events (Galatians 1:11-12, 16-17).

2)  Revealed to Pharaoh that a time of plenty would be followed by a time of famine.  Both of these periods were to be seven years in length (Genesis 41:29-36)

“Seven” is one of the numbers showing completeness.  It signifies the completion of that which is in view.  The dreams of Pharaoh, thus, set forth events transpiring within two complete periods of time.

Throughout the Word of God we are told about these two complete periods, which within their proper framework FOLLOW the resurrection of Christ.  There is to be a time of plenty — the day in which we presently live; and there is to be a time of famine — the Tribulation period.  And just as surely as the time of plenty ended during Joseph’s day and the time of famine followed, the time of plenty in which we now live will end, and the time of famine will follow (Matthew 24:21; Revelation 6:1-8).

The Exaltation of Joseph (Genesis 41:39-45)

1)  Following his removal from prison and his making known God’s Revelation, Joseph was exalted and seated on the throne of the ruler over all Egypt.  Joseph was arrayed in fine linen, a gold chain was placed about his neck, he rode in Pharaoh’s second chariot, all were required to bow their knee to Joseph, and he was placed over all the land of Egypt (Genesis 41:39-44)

Following His resurrection and His making known God’s Revelation (Acts 1:3), Jesus was exalted and seated on the throne of the Ruler over all the earth, and the universe at large (Psalm 110:1; Revelation 3:21).

God has exalted Jesus to His right hand to be “Prince and Savior” (Acts 5:31);  He has been “crowned with glory and honor” (Hebrews. 2:9);  He has been clothed with garments befitting His position — a body enswathed with the glory of God (Psalm 104:1-2);  God has stated, “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth” (Philippians 2:10); “All authority . . . in heaven and on earth” has been given to Him (Matthew 28:18 ASV);  and this is all with a view to the Anointed One exercising power from His own throne in the coming age (Psalm 110:1-3; Revelation 3:21).

2)  During the time Joseph was seated on the throne of another, and before the time of famine, he became the savior of the world, and he took a Gentile bride (Genesis 41:45)

During the time Jesus is seated on the throne of His Father, and before the time of famine, He is the Savior of the world, and He is taking a Gentile bride (Acts 15:14; Romans 11:25; Revelation 19:7-8).

During the present time, the world is enjoying its day of plenty.  But the day of famine is just ahead.  The Church, of course, will not be here.  Christ will remove His bride before the time of famine (which will involve the removal of ALL Christians at that time, for the bride will not be singled out — the “called out” will not be removed from the “called” [cf. Matthew 22:14] — UNTIL events surrounding the judgment seat, where ALL Christians MUST appear [2 Corinthians 5:9-11]).

In the type, Asenath, the wife of Joseph, was not affected by the time of famine.  She was noticeably absent during events surrounding the famine, which included events surrounding Joseph’s dealings with his brethren during the time of famine.  Thus will it be in the antitype.  The Church will have no part in events surrounding the Tribulation; nor will the Church have a part in Christ’s dealings with His brethren according to the flesh both during and immediately following this time.

In a corresponding type in the book of Exodus we find these same truths set forth.  Moses took a Gentile bride during the time of his rejection by his brethren, but she had no part in his dealings with his brethren during the plagues upon Egypt and the subsequent Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt.  Moses’ wife, Zipporah, did not accompany Moses to Egypt when he appeared to his brethren the second time and was not present during any of his dealings with his brethren in Egypt or with the Assyrian Pharaoh ruling Egypt.

She was separated from Moses during this time and reunited with him only after the Exodus (Exodus 2:21; 4:20-26; 18:1-5).

As in the antitype of Joseph and Asenath, or in the antitype of Moses and Zipporah, Christ’s bride will have no part in the coming Tribulation, or in Christ’s dealings with His brethren according to the flesh, both during and immediately following the Tribulation.

Christ’s wife will not accompany Him to the earth when He returns to complete the judgments of the Tribulation and to deliver His brethren.  She, as Asenath in relation to Joseph, or Zipporah in relation to Moses, will be separated from Christ during this time and be reunited with Him only after He concludes His dealings with Israel.  Those who accompany Christ to the earth and witness concluding judgments of the Tribulation and His dealings with His brethren during this time will be angels, not Christians (Revelation 19:14; Jude1:14; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 2 Thessalonians 1:7; cf. Deuteronomy 33:2; Psalm 68:17; Acts 7:53; Hebrews. 2:2).

Just as surely as night follows day, a time of famine will follow the present time of plenty.  For those who dwell on the earth, many will come to realize too late that “the harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved!” (Jeremiah 8:20) — which would have to do with both the saved and the unsaved.

(Salvation for those who have already “passed from death to life” has to do with an ongoing aspect of salvation, to be realized in the future — the salvation of the soul.

Salvation for those who have not passed from death to life” is another matter though.  They have yet to possess spiritual life.  Consequently, they are completely removed from all aspects of the overall scope of salvation that God, through His Son, has provided for man.)
Chapter Six
Joseph and Asenath
Exalted Over All Egypt

(In Chapter 5, Joseph was seen delivered from prison and placed at the right hand of power; and from this position, Joseph took a Gentile bride.  The antitype, of course, is easy to see.  Jesus was delivered from the place of death and placed at the right hand of Power; and from this position, Jesus is presently taking a Gentile bride.

The bride whom Christ is presently taking from the Gentiles is for a purpose that will be realized in the coming age.  Christ, in that day, will hold the earth's scepter as He ascends His Own throne; and His bride, who will then be His wife, will ascend the throne and exercise power as co-regent with Him [Revelation 2:26, 27; 3:21].)

Two Complete Periods (Genesis 41:1-54)

Joseph revealed to Pharaoh the interpretation of two dreams, and these dreams had to do with events transpiring during two seven-year periods.  "Seven" is the number of perfection.  It signifies the completion of that which is in view. Events transpiring during these two periods, thus, point to events transpiring during two complete periods of time in the antitype.

A completeness shown by the number seven is evident throughout Scripture.  The six-day restoration of the earth in Genesis chapter one — an earth that had become "without form and void" as a result of Satan seeking to exalt his throne (cf. Isaiah 14:12-17; Jeremiah 4:23-28; Ezekiel 28:14-19) — was incomplete without the seventh day of rest (Genesis 1:2-2:3 [2b]).  These seven days set forth in type, at the very beginning of Scripture, the period of time that biblical revelation covers, which is the period of time that God concerns Himself with the affairs of man on this present earth.  From the point of man's fall, the complete length of this time will be seven days7,000 years — one complete period of time (cf. Matthew 16:28-17:5; 2 Peter 1:15-18; 3:3-8).  God will work six days in the restoration of a ruined creation (ruined man, along with the ruined material creation once again) and then rest the seventh day, exactly as He did in the prior restoration of a ruined creation set forth in the opening verses of Genesis (cf. Genesis 1:1-2:3; Exodus 31:13-17).

"The thought of a ruined condition of the earth succeeding its original creation...is required by the typical view" (F. W. Grant).

God later dealt with Israel, not only in complete keeping with this established pattern, but in related numeric fashions as well.

The Sabbath was given to Israel as a "sign" (pointing to a day of rest following God's present six-day restorative work [Exodus 31:13-17]), and the complete sacred calendar of Israel, in both history and prophecy, was set forth in another septenary manner — in the seven "feasts of the Lord" (Leviticus 23:1ff).  That which was depicted by these festivals begins in history with the birth of a nation the night of the Passover in Egypt, during the days of Moses; and this festival foreshadows that day when the nation will be reborn, that day when Israel will observe her national Passover (through appropriating the blood of the slain Lamb) during the days of the One Who is greater than Moses.

A deliverance from Gentile dominion occurred under Moses; and this was followed by the nation being led into the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, with the nation being placed in that land within a theocracy under Joshua (the Hebrew name for "Jesus," meaning Salvation).  A deliverance from Gentile dominion is about to occur under Christ; and this will be followed by a restoration of the nation to the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, with the nation being placed in that land within a theocracy under Christ.

These are among events set forth by the "feasts of the Lord" in Leviticus 23.

The time of the captivity of the children of Israel in Babylon was set by God at seventy years, which is "ten" sevens.  "Ten" is the number of ordinal completion relating to the earth. "Ten," like seven, is a complete number, but from a different perspective (cf. Matthew 25:1; Luke 19:13).

Daniel's prophecy of the Seventy Weeks (Daniel 9:24-27) constitutes a period of time (490 years) that equals seven times seventy, or seven times seven times ten.  These 490 years constitute a complete period of time determined upon the Jewish people and the city of Jerusalem, which will be followed by the Messianic Era ((Daniel 9:24).  Note also that the beast in Revelation 13:1ff, the end-time world ruler (who will appear during the final seven years of this 490-year period), will have seven heads and ten horns.

All Scripture rests upon a divinely established numeric arrangement, and, consequently, numbers in Scripture are fraught with spiritual significance and meaning.

The world is presently enjoying its time of abundance, set forth by the seven years of plenty in Pharaoh's dreams.  But the world will shortly be ushered into a time of trouble, set forth by the seven years of famine in these same dreams.  This time of trouble/famine is described in Genesis as being so grievous that "the plenty shall not be known in the land by reason of that famine following" (Genesis 41:31).  The antitype of this period is described in Matthew's gospel as a time of trouble "such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be" (Matthew 24:21).

Throughout both the complete times of plenty and famine Joseph occupied a position at the right hand of the ruler over all Egypt in the type.  In the antitype, Jesus presently occupies a position at the right hand of the Ruler over all the earth (and the universe at large) during the time of plenty, and He will continue to occupy this position during the time of famine that will follow.

(Note that God is the Supreme Ruler over the entire universe, which includes the earth.  Then, messianic angels rule various provinces in the universe under God, with Satan [a fallen messianic angel] presently ruling the earth in this capacity.)

Joseph took a Gentile bride during the time of plenty.  And Jesus is presently taking a Gentile bride during the time of plenty.

Joseph was arrayed in fine linen, a gold chain was placed about his neck ("gold," in Scripture, speaks of Deity), he was made to ride in the second chariot, all Egypt was commanded to bow the knee before Joseph, and he was given a new name — Zaphnath-Paaneah — which means, "Savior of the world."  Pharaoh said unto Joseph, "I am Pharaoh, and without your consent no man may lift his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt" (Genesis 41:40-45).

For those who have eyes to see, the antitype is clear.  God the Father has placed His Son, Jesus, in exactly this same position (Philippians 2:6-10; Hebrews 2:9; 1 Peter 3:22; Revelation 3:21).

But, as previously seen, though the position that Christ occupies will remain unchanged (as the position that Joseph occupied), conditions on this earth will change; and these conditions will change drastically.

The time of plenty is going to come to an end, with a time of unparalleled famine following — a time so grievous that conditions existing during the previous time of plenty "shall not be known" throughout the earth because of the famine (Genesis 41:31).  And all of this is something that man not only seems to know very little about but also doesn't even seem to want to discuss today.  Man wants to remove that day — when the time of plenty ends, and the time of famine begins — far from him.  Scripture though cannot be broken.  The time of plenty is going to end, and the time of famine is then going to begin:

"Then the seven years of plenty which were in the land of Egypt ended,

and the seven years of famine began to come, as Joseph had said..." (Genesis 41:53-54a).

In the type, the time of plenty came to an end, and the time of famine followed, just as Joseph had said.  And in the antitype, the time of plenty during which we presently live will come to an end, and the time of famine will follow, just as Jesus has said (Matthew 24:21-22).

Go unto Joseph (Genesis 41:55-57)

When the famine came upon Egypt, "the people cried to Pharaoh for bread:  and Pharaoh said unto all the Egyptians,"

"Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, do.

The famine was over all the face of the earth, and Joseph opened all the storehouses and sold to the Egyptians.  And the famine became severe in the land of Egypt" (Genesis 41:55-56 [55b]).

This sets forth a truth that Christians appear to have little appreciation for today.   Although the famine in this verse refers to the coming Tribulation in the antitype, the application to Christians during a time of famine (need) today is too evident to pass by without a few comments.

Do you have a need?  Do you know how to obtain a supply for any need that might arise in your life?  The answer is found in Genesis 41:55-56:  "Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, do."  He will then open "all the storehouses."  A similar thought is set forth in the words of Jesus in John 14:14:  "If you will ask anything in my name, I will do it." 

Asking in the name of Jesus is a very misunderstood subject today.  These words do not constitute a magic formula that can be repeated at the end of a prayer merely to obtain things that an individual may desire to have.  "In Jesus' name" implies that the person is acting on the Lord's behalf, using the talents and/or pounds left in their possession to bring forth an increase (Matthew 25:14-20; Luke 19:11-27).  That would be to say, they would be trading and trafficking, using that which the Lord had entrusted to them in order to carry out business on His behalf during His time of absence.  And, in the process of carrying out this business, a person would have certain needs that must be met.  That person could then make requests "in Jesus' name," with the assurance that such requests would be answered and met.

If a person is truly conducting business on the Lord's behalf, in the manner that He has told them to conduct that business, it should go without saying that the person would be doing that which the Lord had told them to do.  A person in this position could then go to Jesus with his needs, the storehouses would be opened, and the Lord would supply these needs (cf. John 16:23-24; James 4:3; 1 John 3:22).

One of the main cries heard in Christian circles today is the plea for money to carry on the Lord's work.  That is a strange sound coming from the trumpet.  Reverse that into the type in Genesis 41, and you will have the people of Egypt going out trying to raise money to help Joseph.  NO!  The only correct biblical response is to "GO unto Joseph; what he says to you, DO!"  He will THEN open "ALL the storehouses."

The attitude of too many Christians today is, "Tell the people, and trust the Lord."  Arno Gaebelein, one of the great Bible teachers in past years, used to say that when you tell the people, you cease to trust the Lord.  The attitude of Dr. Gaebelein in this area was far more Scriptural than the position many Christians are taking today.  Not only are there certain pseudo-religious programs on radio and television, which are little more than fund-raising campaigns preying on the biblical ignorance of Christians, but many churches throughout the land are carrying on man-made programs that are little different.  If Christians followed the admonition of Scripture concerning their needs in all areas, they would find that not only would many (probably most) Church-related programs of today cease to exist, but many others would come into existence; and the Lord would supply the necessary funds to carry on His work.

Any group of Christians doing what the Lord has told them to do need only ask of the Lord, and He will supply any need that might arise.  Any church in financial straits today has not done one or both of two things:  The members constituting that church have either not done what He has told them to do or they have not gone to the Lord for their needs.

What has the Lord told you to do?  Two related thoughts will be set forth that individuals might consider, and which will perhaps shed light on the central reason why many Christian organizations and churches have been beset by problems — financial and otherwise.

1)  The Attitude of Christians toward the Word of God in General

God has placed pastor-teachers in churches to lead Christians into a mature knowledge of the Word of God.  Christians, in turn, are to take this knowledge and do what God has told them to do in His Word.  God speaks to us today through His Word.

This Word is to be taught "precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little."  The ones whom the Lord will teach "knowledge" and make to understand "doctrine" are those who are "weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts" (Isaiah 28:9-13).  If one follows God's Revelation to man, his teachings will center on God's firstborn Sons — Jesus, Israel, and the Church (awaiting the adoption).  Not only will his teachings center on God's firstborn Sons, but the goal toward which all things are moving — the earth's coming Sabbath rest, the Messianic Era — will be placed in its proper perspective.

Teachings concerning Christ begin in Genesis 1:1 (cf. John 1:1-5).  Jesus stated that ALL Scripture was about Him (Luke 24:27, 44; John 5:39, 46).  Thus, it matters not where a person turns in Scripture, he will find himself studying about some facet of the person and work of Christ.

Teachings concerning the nation of Israel also begin in Genesis.  Not only was Abraham the father of this nation (Genesis 11:26ff), but teachings concerning Israel can be seen much earlier in typology.  Genesis 4, for example, sets forth Cain (responsible for the death of Abel) as a type of Israel (responsible for the death of Christ); and Noah passing through the Flood is a type of Israel passing through the coming Tribulation.

Teachings concerning the Church also begin in Genesis.  Adam and Eve constitute the original type of Christ and His bride, and Enoch and Methuselah constitute a type of Christians being removed before the coming Flood (Tribulation) — some via death as Methuselah, others by being caught up alive as Enoch.

Teachings concerning the kingdom also begin in Genesis.  The Sabbath day of rest (Genesis 2:1-3), following six days of work (Genesis 1:2-31 [2b]), sets forth the fact that a Sabbath day of rest is coming following six days of work.  And each one of these days will be 1,000 years in length (cf. Exodus 31:13-17; Hebrews 4:4-9; 2 Peter 1:15-18; 3:3-8).

Genesis is rich beyond degree.  There's not a single biblical doctrine that cannot be found in some form in Genesis.  In order to correctly understand the work of the Son — past, present, and future — along with the place occupied by Israel and the Church in God's eternal plans and purposes, one MUST begin in Genesis.

A teaching example for the servants of the Lord to follow has been set by Jesus Himself:  "Beginning at Moses and all the prophets..." (Luke 24:27).  Great spiritual lessons concerning Christ, Israel, and the Church can be drawn from the Old Testament Scriptures, beginning with the writings of Moses.  And spiritual lessons of this nature can be derived only through extensive studies of the types.

Thus, the import of types in Scripture can immediately be seen.  Not only will God's three firstborn Sons — Christ, Israel, and the Church — be placed in their proper perspective, but teachings drawn from "Moses and all the prophets" will be directed toward the earth's coming Sabbath day of rest — the coming Messianic Era, when God's three firstborn Sons (the Church, following the adoption) will be placed in their proper positions on and over the earth.  No wonder it was said by more than one great Bible teacher of past years that types commend themselves to the spiritually minded.

2)  The Attitude of Christians toward the Word of God in Particular

The central message of Scripture, the Word of the Kingdom, is the message upon which Satan has centered his attack throughout this dispensation.  And this is perhaps nowhere better depicted in Scripture than in the parables of Matthew 13.

In these parables, Satan is the one who seeks to bring about barrenness in the lives of Christians as they find themselves placed in various parts of the world, with a view to their bringing forth fruit (Matthew 13:4-8, 19-23); he is the one responsible for sowing tares among the wheat, with a view to barrenness among Christians (Matthew 13:24-30); he is the one who produced an unnatural growth in Christendom early in this dispensation, which continues today, resulting in his messengers finding ready acceptance therein (Matthew 13:31-32); and he is the one responsible for the leavening process that has been occurring within Christendom throughout this dispensation, resulting in an every-increasing corruption, which will continue until the whole has been leavened (Matthew 13:33).

Satan's attack in this fashion has not been an attack upon biblical doctrine in general.   Rather, it has been an attack upon biblical doctrine in a very particular and specific manner.  It would be an attack similar to that referred to in military circles today as "a surgical strike [an attack directed at one specific target, using computer-guided missiles, leaving that which surrounds the target untouched]."  It has been an attack directed specifically at the Word of the Kingdom.

And the direct command to Christians in the Word of God runs completely contrary to that which can be seen occurring on almost every hand in Christendom today.  To avoid being caught up in the wiles of Satan — in which almost the whole of Christendom finds itself today — Christians are commanded to study the Word, remaining in complete keeping with the Old Testament prophecies.  It is only through a knowledge gleaned from the Word after this fashion that Christians can know how to properly array themselves in armor, know how to properly combat the enemy, know how to remain faithful, and know how to maintain a proper spiritual awareness (cf. Ephesians 6:10ff; 1 Timothy 1:18-19; 2 Timothy 2:15).

Further, Christians are commanded to strain every muscle of their being in the present race of the faith, something that they would know very little about apart from a proper study of the Word (1 Timothy 6:11-19; 2 Timothy 4:7-8; Jude1:3).  And Christians are to govern their lives after this fashion with a view to a prize that awaits the victors at the end of the race of the faith (1 Peter 4:12, 13; 5:1-6).

And it is not just any prize awaiting Christians who govern their lives after this fashion.  Rather, it is the highest prize of all prizes.  It is the greatest thing that God could ever design for redeemed man — that of one day being elevated into the heavens and being privileged to ascend the throne with God's Son, ruling the earth as co-regent with the King of kings, and Lord of lords.

Can Christians expect the storehouses to be opened and the blessings of the Lord to flow out, even though they have gone to Him for their needs, if they refuse to do what He has told them?  Look once again at the order in Genesis 41:55-56:  GO...DO...and He will THEN open ALL the storehouses.

Famine upon the Earth (Genesis 42:1-38)

The time of famine is coming.  It came during Joseph's day, and it will come during the present day.  The brethren of Joseph faded from view after he had been sold into the hands of the Gentiles (Genesis 37:28), and they did not reappear until the time of famine (Genesis 42:1).

The brethren of Jesus, according to the flesh, faded from view after He had been sold into the hands of the Gentiles.  Israel has been set aside while God, during the time of plenty, takes out of the Gentiles a people for His name.

However, when the time of famine begins, just as the brethren of Joseph in the type reappeared, the brethren of Jesus in the antitype will reappear.  And then, as Joseph dealt with his brethren, God will deal with Israel on a national basis once again.

1)  When the time of famine came, Joseph's brethren were driven from their land and forced to go into Egypt (Genesis 42:3).

During the coming time of famine, Jesus' brethren will be driven from their land and forced to go out into the Gentile world.  The Jews in the land of Israel today are there in unbelief awaiting the man of sin.  He will one day appear, exactly as foretold in Scripture, and make a seven-year covenant with many in Israel.  After three and one-half years this covenant will be broken, and Satan, through the man of sin, will launch his final and most intense attack against Israel.  The Jews in the land who do not escape to the place of safety prepared by God (Revelation 12:6) will either be killed or sold as slaves throughout the Gentile world.  And in his campaign against Israel, during a three and one-half year period, this man will succeed in destroying two-thirds of the world's Jewish population (Zechariah 13:8), though he will fail in his ultimate goal — the complete destruction of the Jewish people (Revelation 12:13-17; cf. Jeremiah 31:35-37).

2)  During the time of famine, Joseph's brethren had no place to turn but to Joseph (Genesis 42:6).

During the coming Great Tribulation, Jesus' brethren will have no place to turn but to Jesus (Exodus 3:2, 7-9).

3) Joseph's brethren confessed their guilt in his presence. The time was after two days, on the third day (Genesis 42:18-23).

Jesus' brethren will confess their guilt in His presence.  The time will be after two days, on the third day (Hosea 5:15-6:2).  The Word of God states that Israel in that day "shall look upon Me [Jesus] whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourns for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn" (Zechariah 12:10b).

(In the Hebrew text of Zechariah 12:10 there is an untranslated Aleph and Tau [the first and last letters in the Hebrew alphabet, equivalent to the Alpha and Omega in Greek, the first and last letters in the Greek alphabet].  Note Who declares Himself to be the "Alpha and Omega, the first and the last" [Revelation 1:8, 11].  It is none other than the pierced One in Zechariah 12:10, the Aleph and the Tau.)

4)  Joseph helped his brethren and supplied their needs — without price — during the time of famine (Genesis 42:25-26).

Jesus will help His brethren and supply their needs — without price — during the coming time of famine (Isaiah 55:1).

The Silver Cup and the Confession (Genesis 43; 44)

When Joseph's brethren journeyed to Egypt the first time, Benjamin did not accompany them.  Benjamin was Joseph's full-blood brother.  The other sons of Jacob were Joseph's half-brothers.   Benjamin was the youngest of all Jacob's sons and was the only remaining son who had been conceived by Rachel.  Rachel, the wife Jacob worked seven additional years to procure, had died at the time Benjamin was born; and since Jacob presumed that Joseph was dead, Jacob had refused to allow Benjamin to accompany his brothers to Egypt for fear that something might befall the only remaining son whom Rachel had borne.

The remainder of Joseph's brethren, on their first trip to Egypt, bowed themselves before Joseph in accordance with Joseph's dreams (Genesis 37:5-10; 42:6, 9), pointing to that time yet future when the brethren of Jesus will be forced to come and bow before Him.  Joseph knew his brethren, but they did not know him (Genesis 42:8), pointing to that future day when Jesus will still be a stranger to the house of Israel, after they have gone to Him for help.  He will know them, but they will not know Him until He reveals Himself to them, exactly as seen in the type.

Even in Israel's present state of unbelief, the attitude of Jesus toward the house of Israel is graphically illustrated in the attitude of Joseph toward his brethren.  Note that Joseph turned aside and wept while his brethren were still unaware of his true identity (Genesis 42:24; 43:30; cf. Matthew 23:37-39; Luke 19:41; John 11:35).

Joseph questioned his brethren concerning the welfare of their father and whether or not they had another brother who was not with them.  Not knowing that he already knew one brother was absent, Joseph's brethren told him about Benjamin.  Joseph then forced them into a position where they would have to bring Benjamin with them during their next trip into Egypt (Genesis 42:14; 43:15).

Then, when Benjamin was brought down with his brothers on their second trip into Egypt, Joseph had all eleven brothers brought to his house to dine with him.  He had his servants place each brother before him, according to his birthright (which confounded the brothers, for they had no idea how Joseph possessed such knowledge about them); and Benjamin was given an amount of food which was five times greater than servings given to any of his brothers.  And after they had dined together, Joseph then commanded the steward of his house to have their sacks filled and to place his silver cup in Benjamin's sack (Genesis 43:33-44:2).

Then after Joseph's brethren had left for home, not knowing that the silver cup was in their possession, Joseph sent his steward to overtake them, retrieve his cup, bring his brethren back, and place them before him.  After the brothers had been overtaken and the search conducted, the cup was found in Benjamin's sack (where Joseph had previously instructed that it be placed).  Joseph's brethren rent their clothes (an outward expression of great grief); and, after they had returned, Judah stood before Joseph and confessed "the iniquity of your servants [referring to all eleven brothers]."  Judah was forced, through circumstances, to relate that which had occurred years before, when Joseph was sold into the hands of the Gentiles by his brethren (Genesis 44:3ff).

Benjamin and Judah represent the entire nation of Israel during that future time of trouble when the Israelites go to Jesus for help.  Just as Benjamin's serving at the table was five times greater than servings given to his brothers, Israel, will be blessed above measure ("five" is the number of grace — that which God is able to do totally apart from human intervention).  And just as the silver cup was found in Benjamin's possession, that to which the cup points will be found in Israel's possession in that coming day, among those who do not realize that they possess the cup.

"Silver" in Scripture speaks of the price of redemption.  There is no redemption apart from the shedding of blood.  The tabernacle, for example — the house of blood — rested entirely on a foundation of pure silver.  This silver had been collected from the children of Israel and was called "atonement money" (Exodus 30:11-16; 38:25-27).  The One to Whom the tabernacle in every detail points — the Lord Jesus Christ — was betrayed for thirty pieces of silver.  He is the One Who has paid the price for our redemption with His Own blood.

The silver cup — found in Benjamin's possession, to be found in Israel's possession — sets forth the fact once and for all that this nation is guilty of blood, and this blood is none other than the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.  It matters little that large religious bodies — Catholic and Protestant alike — as well as others, have sought to absolve Israel of guilt in the death of Christ.  The cup was found in Benjamin's possession in the type, and in that future day when Jesus deals with His brethren, the cup will be found in Israel's possession in the antitype (cf. Acts 2:23, 36; 3:12-15; 4:8-10).

After Joseph's brethren realized that the cup was in their possession, they rent their clothes; and then Judah stood before Joseph and confessed the iniquity of not only himself but that of his brothers as well.

In the antitype, after Jesus' brethren realize that the cup is in their possession, there will be a great mourning, not only in Jerusalem, but throughout all the land (Zechariah 12:10-14).  Then, in the antitype of Judah's confession in Joseph's presence (in the presence of the one who had been offended), the Jewish people will confess their iniquity in Jesus' presence (in the presence of the One Who has been offended).

This will occur at the apex of the darkest hour of Israeli history.  When it seemed that all was lost and Benjamin was about to become a slave forever, Judah confessed their guilt to Joseph.

During the Great Tribulation when it will seem that all is lost and the Israelites are about to be faced with slavery forever at the hands of the Gentiles, they will cry out to Jesus, acknowledge their offense, and He will hear (cf. Leviticus 5:5-6; 26:40-42; Deuteronomy 30:1-3; Hosea 5:15-6:2; Joel 3:6-8).

The Revelation of Joseph to His Brethren (Genesis 45:1ff)

Then Joseph could not refrain himself before all them that stood by him; and he cried, "Cause every man to go out from me."  And there stood no man with him, while Joseph made himself known unto his brethren.

And he wept aloud:  and the Egyptians and the house of Pharaoh heard.

And Joseph said to his brethren "I am Joseph; does my father still live?"  And his brethren could not answer him:  for they were troubled [lit., 'terrified'] at his presence.

And Joseph said to his brethren, "Come near to me, I pray you."  And they came near.  And he said, I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt (Genesis 45:1-4).

This, of course, is a type of that future day when Jesus reveals Himself to His brethren, the nation of Israel.  To illustrate how any one type is incomplete in itself and must be studied in conjunction with other types and the antitype to obtain the complete picture, note a corresponding type in Acts 9:3-6 and the antitype of both types in Zechariah 12:10-12; 13:6.

In Acts 9:1-7, the one later known as the Apostle Paul was leading a great persecution against Christians when Jesus appeared to Paul, personally, in His body of flesh and bones.  Others were with Paul, but they neither saw Jesus nor entered into His dealings with Paul.  Paul asked the question, "Who are you, Lord?"  And the reply was, "I am Jesus..." (Acts 9:5).  Immediately following this revelation, Paul was troubled (lit., "terrified") by the Lord's presence (Acts 9:6), just as the brethren of Joseph had been troubled (lit., "terrified") by his presence (Genesis 45:3).

In 1 Timothy 1:15-16, we are told that Paul was not saved just to obtain mercy, but he was saved for a "pattern (Gr. hupotuposis, 'a prototype') to them that should hereafter believe on Him to life everlasting."  According to 1 Corinthians 15:8, Paul was "born out of due time" when Christ appeared to him on the Damascus road.  The words "born out of due time" are a translation of a Greek word that literally means, "born before it was time to be born," or "abortion."  The manner of Paul's conversion was a premature birth to establish a prototype.  Paul's salvation experience constitutes a type of Israel's future salvation experience.

Drawing from the types in Genesis 45:1-4; Acts 9:1-7 and the antitype in Zechariah 12:10-12; 13:6, note what one finds concerning that future day when Jesus will reveal Himself to Israel.

1.  Jesus will find Israel participating in a persecution of the people of God (Acts 9:1-2).

2.  Jesus will be alone in His dealings with Israel (Genesis 45:1; Acts 9:7).

3.  Jesus will weep once again because of Israel, but this time tears of joy will be shed (Genesis 45:2; cf. Luke 19:41; John 11:35).

4.  Israel is going to ask, "What are those wounds in your hands?"  And Jesus will reply, "Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends" (Zechariah 13:6).  It would appear that this question may very well come first, with Israel almost afraid to ask the next question, fearing the answer that the nation will hear.

But, nevertheless, Israel is going to ask, "Who are you, Lord?" (Acts 9:5).  And the reply will be, "I am Jesus" (Genesis 45:3; Acts 9:5).

5.  Israel will then stand terrified and astonished in the presence of Jesus as they gaze upon the One Whom they crucified 2,000 years earlier (Genesis 45:3; Acts 9:6; Zechariah 12:10).

After the national conversion of Israel, set forth in type by Paul's conversion, Israel will then, like Paul, ask the question, "Lord, what will You have me do?" (Acts 9:6).  After Paul's conversion, the good news that he had been called to proclaim was carried to the four points of the compass, and individuals throughout the entire Gentile world heard the message (Romans 10:18; Colossians 1:23).

After the conversion of Israel, the nation will carry the message of the one true and living God to the ends of the earth.  Joseph's brethren went forth proclaiming, "Joseph is still alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt" (Genesis 45:13, 26).  Israel in that day, like the brethren of Joseph, will go forth proclaiming, "Jesus is still alive, and He is the Governor over the entire earth."

Israel in that day will occupy her rightful place in relation to her calling (Isaiah 43:9-12).   Israel will then carry the message of salvation through Jesus Christ and the message of the glory of the kingdom to the ends of the earth.

God's Three Firstborn Sons Exalted Together

God presently has two firstborn Sons — Christ, and Israel.  "Christ" is God's only begotten firstborn Son (John 3:16), and "Israel" is presently God's only adopted firstborn son (cf. Exodus 4:22-23; Romans 9:4).

In that coming day following Christ's return, God will have another adopted firstborn son.  Following the adoption of Christians (Romans 8:14-23), which will occur following this present dispensation, God will have a third firstborn son (Hebrews 12:23).

"Sonship" implies rulership.   Sons of God presently rule the earth.  Satan and his angels presently rule and are sons of God through creation, as Adam, created to rule and to reign in Satan's stead, was a son of God [in both his unfallen and fallen state] (cf. Genesis 1:26-28; Luke 3:38).   But, though sons of God presently rule, God is about to replace these sons with a new order of Sons (Romans 8:19).  Satan and his angels are about to be put down, and a new order of Sons will then be elevated to the throne.  And the entire creation — brought under the bondage of sin because of Adam's sin — presently groans and travails in pain, awaiting that day (Romans 8:20-22).

Within the framework of God's orderly arrangement of the earth's government, disorder presently prevails.  Satan is out of place; his rightful place is consignment to the abyss, to be followed by consignment to the lake of fire.  Christ is out of place; His rightful place is seated on His Own throne, ruling the earth in the stead of Satan.  The Church is out of place; the Church's rightful place is to be seated on the throne with Christ, ruling in the stead of angels.  And Israel is out of place; Israel's rightful place is to be positioned at the head of the nations on the earth.

A major change in the earth' government is in the offing.  God's restorative work — lasting six days, 6,000 years (in complete keeping with the established pattern in Genesis 1:1-2:3) — is almost over.  The work of the Spirit in the world during the present dispensation — that of procuring a bride for God's Son, a part of God's restorative work — is almost over.  And the past dispensation, with only seven years remaining, in which God will complete His dealings with Israel, is almost over as well.

The six days, the 6,000 years, are almost over.  God's restorative work is almost finished, and the new order of Sons is about to be manifested for the entire creation to behold.   That day is almost upon us.  Man's Day is about to end, and the Lord's Day is about to begin.

And in that coming day, during the earth's coming Sabbath, that which is presently out of place will then be in place.  In that day, following Satan and his angels having been put down, God's three firstborn Sons will be exalted together.  Only then will order be restored, with perfection once again existing in God's ordered structure of the earth's government.
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The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print:  The Bride in Genesis BOOK by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx


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Note that the sounding of the seventh trumpet and the pouring out of the seventh vial not only both depict the same scene but also the finality of the matter with regard to that scene (Revelation 10:1-7; 11:15-19; 16:17-21).  And it would be impossible to have two finalities in the preceding manner but yet somehow see them as depicting something different.

Opening the Seventh Seal
Depicting Final Judgments Following Christ’s Return
By Arlen Chitwood of
Lamp Broadcast

“And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.

And I saw the seven angels which stood before God;  and to them were given seven trumpets.

And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer;  and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.

And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.

And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth:  and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightning, and an earthquake.

And the seven angels which had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound…

And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues;  for in them is filled up the wrath of God…

And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth…”(Revelation 8:1-6; 15:1; 16:1).

The preceding verses have to do with a sequence of judgments occurring in the Book of Revelation once the seventh and last seal of the seven-sealed scroll in Revelation 5 has been broken, which reveals the seven-trumpet and seven-vial judgments.  And, as will be shown, the seven trumpet judgments and the seven vial judgments are two depictions of the same judgments, not different, sequential judgments.

Most commentators see the trumpet judgments occurring first, then the vial judgments sequentially following, for this is the way that they see them laid out in the book (Revelation 8-11 [the trumpets], then Revelation 15; 16 [the vials]).  In this respect, these same commentators usually attempt to see one complete, continuous sequence of events depicted throughout Revelation 6-19, which is where the mistake is made.

The Book of Revelation is simply not structured in a sequential manner of this nature;  nor is a good portion of Scripture which precedes structured in such a manner, particularly when one views matters from a typical standpoint.

Sequences of events are depicted, but the book will often drop back and cover the same events from another vantage point or cover other events occurring during the same time.

In this respect, note that Christ’s return is seen three places in Revelation 6-19 (depicted different ways in each place):

1)  In conjunction with the breaking of the sixth seal (Revelation 6:12-17), immediately before the trumpet judgments of the seventh seal (Revelation 8:1ff [though information concerning the 144,000 and the results of their ministry lie between, in Revelation 7, providing introductory information for later dealings with the 144,000 in Revelation 12; 14 {14a}]).

2)  Immediately before the vial judgments of the seventh seal (same place as previously seen before the trumpet judgments), at the end of Revelation 14:14-20, with the sixth and seventh vial judgments depicted in these verses in connection with His return (Revelation 15; 16).

3)  And then again at the end of Revelation 19:11-21 (with only the judgments seen in the sixth and seventh trumpets, the sixth and seventh vials, depicted following the third and last mention of Christ’s return [as previously seen in Revelation 14 {b}]).

It is evident that a sequence of events can be followed at this point in the book (seen from comparing Scripture with Scripture in the book, along with going back to the type in Exodus [i.e., in a respect, running all the checks and balances which Scripture provides]).  And this sequence of events which one can follow at this point in the book shows that the entirety of the judgments revealed when the seventh seal is broken (trumpets/vials) occurs following Christ’s return.

(When Christ returns, He will be accompanied by Moses and Elijah, along with His mighty angels.  Numerous judgmental events will occur when He returns [events continuing from those having previously occurred during the Tribulation and now brought to completion, with Christ personally present].

These events are seen in the overall type in Exodus 4-14.  Moses will have a part in one aspect of the matter, Elijah in another, and angels in another.

For information on the preceding, refer to The Son of Man Coming in His Kingdom and Two Men at the Empty Tomb in this site.  Or, for a more exhaustive treatment, refer to The Time of the End, Chs. 8-19, also in this site.)

To say that the trumpet judgments and vial judgments are different judgments, as most commentators do, can easily be shown to be incorrect.  They both have to do with exactly the same thing (the first trumpet and first vial, the second trumpet and second vial, etc);  and, as previously noted, they can only both occur at the same time following Christ’s return (not only clearly shown in the Book of Revelation in each instance but clearly shown as well from the single series of judgments in the type in Exodus).

And they will evidently occur during the seventy-five-day period seen at the end of the Book of Daniel — which could only be a period of time set aside for the numerous, revealed events which must occur between the time of Christ’s return and the beginning of His 1,000-year reign.

Note what one finds when comparing the trumpet and vial judgments:

1) First trumpet and vial — both have to do with the earth.

2) Second trumpet and vial — both have to do with the sea.

3) Third trumpet and vial — both have to do with the rivers and fountains of waters.

4) Fourth trumpet and vial — both have to do with heavenly bodies.

5) Fifth trumpet and vial — both have to do with darkness throughout the kingdom of the Beast.

6) Sixth trumpet and vial — both have to do with the great river Euphrates.

7) Seventh trumpet and vial — both have to do with a full and complete end.

Note that the sounding of the seventh trumpet and the pouring out of the seventh vial not only both depict the same scene but also the finality of the matter with regard to that scene (Revelation 10:1-7; 11:15-19; 16:17-21).  And it would be impossible to have two finalities in the preceding manner but yet somehow see them as depicting something different.

(A perfect tense is used in the Greek text of Revelation 16:17 regarding the completion of the vial judgments — “It is done [lit., ‘It has been done,’ or ‘It has been brought to pass’].”  And though the perfect tense is not used regarding the completion of the trumpet judgments in Revelation 10; 11, it’s clearly evident from the text that all judgment having to do with the seven-sealed scroll is past.

The perfect tense is used to indicate past action presently existing in a finished state.  This is the same tense Christ used in John 19:30 when He cried out from the Cross, immediately before He willingly relinquished His life, immediately before He breathed out, “It is finished [lit., ‘It has been finished’]”;  or, this is the tense used in Ephesians 2:8 referring to one’s presently possessed eternal salvation, “For by grace are ye saved through faith [lit., ‘For by grace you have been saved through faith’]…”)

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The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print: Opening the Seventh Seal by Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast.docx

To website CONTENTS Page.

The old man would be associated with that remaining in darkness, the new man with that no longer in darkness.  And the darkness itself is not gradually changed or ever done away with.  The darkness remains, unchanged, until . . . Revelations 22:5.

The “Old Man” did Not Die with Christ, but was
Crucified with Christ!

In the continuing aspect of salvation [present, to be realized in the future], the salvation of the soul, death and shed blood are, as well, required.  But NOW it is death in relation to THE individual.  NOW it is the death of THE old man.

"Crucifixion" could be used and understood in more than one respect.  Christ was crucified hours before He died.  The old man has been crucified with Christ, BUT is the old man dead?  Compare Romans 6 and Colossians 3.  The old man could only be very much alive, THOUGH to be kept affixed to the cross, IN the process of dying.
 
The old man would be associated with THAT remaining in darkness, the new man with THAT no longer in darkness.  And the darkness itself is NOT gradually changed or ever done away with.  The darkness remains, unchanged, until . . . Revelations 22:5.

Email portion from Arlen Chitwood re Old Man being dead?

See The Old Man where this subject initiates in this site.

Note the following from STRONG'S:

“Judgment” upon the earth itself is past.  This judgment occurred almost 6,000 years ago, in Genesis 3:17-19 [with the absence of death and shed blood, as also seen in the previous judgment of the earth in Genesis 1:2a].  But judgment upon those dwelling on the earth, now inseparably connected with a redemption of the earth, by and through judgment, is still future [and this part of the earth’s judgment, resulting in redemption, will necessitate death and shed blood (for death and shed blood must exist where man is involved, else there can be no redemption).

Redemption of Man
By Arlen Chitwood of
Lamp Broadcast

Relative to man’s redemption, NO difference exists today from that which existed in Eden almost 6,000 years ago.  The whole panorama OF salvation, past, present, and future — spirit, soul, and body — requires death and shed blood throughout.  God’s requirements were SET at the beginning, they were SET perfect, and, accordingly, NO change can ever occur.

In the past aspect of salvation, the salvation that we presently possess [having to do with man’s spirit], THE death of God’s Son and His shed blood are required [Christ’s finished work at Calvary].

In the continuing aspect of salvation [present, to be realized in the future], the salvation of the soul, death and shed blood are, as well, required.  But now it is death in relation to the individual.  NOW it is the death of the old man [cf. Romans 6:1-13; Colossians 2:12; 3:1-10]; and, as well, it is also Christ’s shed blood as before, but NOT His blood relating to His finished work at Calvary;  NOW it is His blood on the mercy seat in heaven; NOW His work as High Priest is in view [cf. John 13:4-12; Hebrews 4:14-16; 9:11-12; 1 John 1:6-2:2] — a work on behalf of those presently being saved [a present divine work, which has to do with the saving of the soul].  AND this present work can occur only because those presently being saved have “passed from death to life” [past aspect of salvation] AND can now be dealt with in the spiritual realm.

And the redemption of the body, as seen in Romans 8:23 [not to be confused with the resurrection of the body], has to do WITH the future adoption into a firstborn status and is part and parcel WITH the salvation of the soul.

All is based on and requires death and shed blood.

[Ref. the author’s books, Salvation of the Soul BOOK and God’s Firstborn Sons BOOK (the Appendix Adoption, Redemption of the Body), both in this site, for more information on the preceding.]

Relative to the redemption of the earth, as well, NO difference exists today from that which existed in Eden.  This is evident from comparing THE past redemption/restoration of the pre-Adamic earth with THE future redemption/restoration of the post-Adamic earth.

When God brought about a judgment upon AND a subsequent restoration of the pre-Adamic earth, man did NOT yet exist.  His creation occurred following the redemption/restoration of the earth.  Thus, man did NOT fit into the equation, AND God could redeem/restore the earth simply on the basis of His past judgment of sin BY reducing the earth to a ruin, AS occurred before man’s creation.

Once man appeared on the scene though, reducing the earth to a ruin once again [judgment, allowing for redemption] was NO longer sufficient in and of itself, as before.  Judgment NOW must not only befall the earth BUT man upon the earth as well.  And, as with man’s present redemption, death and shed blood MUST be involved in the future redemption of the earth in this respect, for not only is man NOW inseparably involved BUT this future judgment will befall man, NOT the earth.

“Judgment” upon the earth itself is past.  This judgment occurred almost 6,000 years ago, in Genesis 3:17-19 [with THE absence of death and shed blood, as also seen in the previous judgment of the earth in Genesis 1:2a].  BUT judgment upon those dwelling on the earth, NOW inseparably connected with a redemption of the earth, by and through judgment, is still future [and this part of the earth’s judgment, resulting in redemption, will necessitate death and shed blood (for death and shed blood MUST exist where man is involved, else there can be NO redemption)].

Note how this is set forth in Revelation 5 following a search for One worthy to take the scroll and break the seals on the scroll.  Christ was the ONLY One found worthy — in heaven, on earth, or under the earth — to take the scroll from His Father’s right hand, break the seals of the scroll, and bring about the earth’s redemption by AND through judgment upon the earth-dwellers [Revelation 5:1ff].  And doing this, He is seen acting in two realms [providing the reason why He was the only One found worthy, for He was the ONLY One who could act in these two realms] — as “the Lion of the tribe of Judah,” effecting judgment [Revelation 5:5] AND as “the Lamb that was slain,” effecting redemption/restoration [Revelation 5:6, 9, 12-13; 6:1], which will occur through judgment.

This redemption/restoration of the earth will occur at the end of the 6,000 years.  And this is what is so vividly described in Revelation 6-19, which results from the breaking of the seals of the seven-sealed scroll introduced in Revelation 5.

Redemption of the domain — the earth — was provided FOR the first man, the first Adam, prior to the time that he was to reign; AND redemption of the same domain will be provided for the second Man, the last Adam, prior to the time that He is to reign.

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The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print:  Redemption of Man By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast.docx

To website CONTENTS Page.

Christians are referred to as “sons” only in sections of Scripture where adoption is in view.  Both sonship and adoption place matters within a regal setting; and Christians, in all three passages where adoption is dealt with, are seen actively moving toward the goal set before them — the adoption of sons and being brought into a realization of the rights of the firstborn.

Children, Sons, Adoption
By Arlen Chitwood of
Lamp Broadcast

Within the family relationship, Christians are referred to as both children and sons.  And the two are closely related but are not really the same.

All Christians are referred to as “children” (Greek: teknon), but Scripture does not use “sons” (Greek: huios) in the same all-encompassing manner.  Though all Christians are “sons” because of creation,  the New Testament use of the Greek word huios, referring to Christians through this means, appears only within contexts which are both regal and where Christians are seen actively progressing toward the goal set before them.  In this respect, the word is used relative to Christians in complete keeping with that which “sonship” portends — with rulership.

In the New Testament epistles (both the Pauline and the general epistles), Christians are referred to as “children [teknon] of God” and “sons [huios] of God” about an equal number of times.  They are referred to as “children of God” in Romans 8:16-17, 21; Philippians 2:15; 1 John 3:1-2, 10; 5:2.  And they are referred to as “sons of God” in Romans 8:14; Galatians 3:26; 4:6-7; Hebrews 12:5-8 (the word “sons” alone, rather than “sons of God,” is used in the latter reference; but a Father-son relationship is in view throughout, showing God dealing with Christians as His sons).

In all three sections of Scripture where Christians are presently referred to as “sons,” adoption is also in view.  In both Romans and Galatians, in the Greek text, the word huiothesia (the word for “adoption [son-placing]”) appears in the context of the verses where Christians are referred to as “sons” (Romans 8:15, 23; Galatians 4:5).

And in Hebrews, adoption is seen in the context as well, though from a different perspective.  It is seen following the verses referring to Christians as “sons” (in Hebrews 12:16-17— verses forming the heart of the fifth and final major warning in the book, dealing with Esau [the firstborn] forfeiting his birthright).

In the antitype of the account pertaining to Esau forfeiting his birthright, the thought of adoption would have to be brought into the picture, for Christians must not only be sons but they must be firstborn sons to realize the rights of the firstborn that Esau in the type forfeited.  And the only way Christians can be brought into this position is through adoption.

(Aside from Romans 8:15, 23; Galatians 4:5, the only other place in the New Testament where the Greek word huiothesia is used relative to Christians is in Ephesians 1:5.  And the use of this word early in the book of Ephesians is in complete keeping with how the subject matter of the book is introduced in this first chapter — a future “redemption” and “inheritance,” in connection with the “mystery” revealed to Paul [Ephesians 1:7, 9, 11, 14, cf. Ephesians 3:1-6; 4:30], to be realized “in the dispensation of the fullness of times” [Ephesians 3:10].  These interrelated things are presently being made known, “by [‘through’] the Church,” to “the principalities and powers in heavenly places” [Satan and his angels], which accounts for the warning and instructions concerning the spiritual warfare at the close of the book [Ephesians 3:9-11; 6:10ff].

As in any New Testament epistle, the central subject seen in Ephesians is not salvation by grace, though that subject is dealt with in the book.  Rather, the central subject has to do with the things seen in the opening chapter, which introduce the things about to be developed in the book — things pertaining to Christians in relation to the coming kingdom of Christ.  And if this epistle, or any New Testament epistle, is not studied after the manner in which the epistle is introduced, the central message of the epistle will be lost to the reader.)

Thus, Christians are referred to as “sons” only in sections of Scripture where adoption is in view.  Both sonship and adoption place matters within a regal setting; and Christians, in all three passages where adoption is dealt with, are seen actively moving toward the goal set before them — the adoption of sons and being brought into a realization of the rights of the firstborn.

On the other hand, Scripture refers to Christians as “children” within a regal setting as well, but not with respect to adoption.  This is the main difference concerning how the two words are used in the New Testament epistles.  It is sons who are adopted, not children.

(In Romans 8:16-17, 21, the Greek word for “children” [teknon] is used in a context with the Greek word for “sons” [huios].  And an inheritance, an adoption, and a manifestation of sons are seen in the passage [with huios alone used relative to the latter two (Romans 8:16-17, 21, teknon appears in connection with present Christian activity, with a view to the coming day of Christ [Romans 8:16].  And in 1 John 3:1-2, 10; 5:2 the context shows the same thing as seen in Philippians 2:15-16.

Teknon is used in these verses to depict present Christian activity, with a view to the hope set before Christians, Christ’s future appearance, and being shown as an overcomer in that coming day.)

Thus, there is the central distinction between the way in which “children” and “sons” are used in the New Testament.  Both are used in regal settings, with the latter used more specifically in connection with the rights of the firstborn.  Both can be used of Christians today; but, only “sons” is used when adoption is in view.

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Word Document:  Children, Sons, Adoption by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Ref. God’s Firstborn Sons BOOK (the Appendix Adoption, Redemption of the Body), both in this website, for more information on the preceding.

Also see in this site The Sons of God Are The Rulers in God’s Kingdom.

To website CONTENTS Page.

The present dispensation is the time during which the antitype of David’s faithful followers being gathered to him occurs.  As during David’s time, so during the present time — there must be a period, preceding the King coming into power, during which the rulers are acquired, called out.  David’s men were the ones who occupied positions of power and authority with him after he took Saul’s crown.  Thus will it be when Christ takes Satan’s crown.  Those who are being called out during the present time are the ones who will occupy positions of power and authority with Him during that coming day.

Purpose for the Present Dispensation
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

A principle of divine government set forth in the type of Saul and David shows the necessity of an incumbent ruler, although rejected, continuing to reign until replaced by his successor.  The government of the earth is a rule under God by and through delegated powers and authorities.  In this respect, Satan rules directly under God (though a rebel ruler), and a great host of subordinate angels rule with him.

Even though Satan and his followers have been rejected, they must continue in power (as Saul and those ruling with him) until replaced by Christ and His followers (as when David and his faithful followers took the kingdom).  God will not, at any time, allow conditions to exist upon the earth in which there is no divinely administered government by and through delegated powers and authorities.  Even though the government of the earth is in disarray today, because of Satan’s rebellion, it is still under God’s sovereign power and control (Daniel 4:17-34).

The present dispensation is the time during which the antitype of David’s faithful followers being gathered to him occurs.  As during David’s time, so during the present time — there must be a period, preceding the King coming into power, during which the rulers are acquired, called out.  David’s men were the ones who occupied positions of power and authority with him after he took Saul’s crown.  Thus will it be when Christ takes Satan’s crown.  Those who are being called out during the present time are the ones who will occupy positions of power and authority with Him during that coming day.

Satan will be allowed to continue his reign until God’s purpose for this present dispensation has been accomplished.  Then, he and those ruling with him will be put down, and an entirely new order of rulers will take the kingdom.  Christ will enter into the position previously occupied by Satan, and Christians will enter into positions previously occupied by angels ruling under Satan.

And since Christ (replacing Satan) will wear the crown presently worn by Satan, it only naturally follows that Christians (replacing subordinate powers and authorities) will wear crowns presently worn by angels ruling under Satan.  All of these are crowns that neither Christ nor Christians can come into possession of until Satan and his angels have been put down at the end of the Tribulation.

Angelic Rule About to End

The originally established angelic rule over the earth has continued uninterrupted since the beginning, preceding man’s existence on the earth.  However, with the creation of Adam, God announced that a change was in the offing.  Man, an entirely new creation, made after the image and likeness of God, was brought into existence to take the governmental reins of the earth (Genesis 1:26-28).  But the first man (the first Adam), through sin, was disqualified, necessitating the appearance of the second Man (the last Adam) to effect redemption and the ultimate realization for man’s creation.

The price has been paid, but redemption includes far more than that which presently exists.  Redemption includes the complete man (body, soul, and spirit), it includes the earth (presently under a curse), and the goal of redemption will be realized only when man has been brought into the position for which he was created (ruling over a restored earth).

Scripture clearly attests to the fact that the “world [‘inhabited world’] to comewill not be placed “in subjection” to angels (Hebrews 2:5).  Man is the one to whom power and authority will be delegated.

This is clearly seen by and through the action of the twenty-four elders in Revelation 4:10, removing themselves from their thrones (Revelation 4:4) and casting their crowns before God’s throne.  Their activity can only be with a view to the fact that the government of the earth, at this point in the sequence of events depicted in the book, is about to change hands.

These twenty-four elders can only be a representative group of heavenly beings (angels) who, up to this time, had held positions within a sphere of governmental power and authority relative to the earth.  And at this point in the book, by and through the action of these elders, the way will be opened for God to transfer the government of the earth from the hands of angels to the hands of man.

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Word Document:  Purpose for the Present Dispensation by Arlen L. Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

God is never seen ruling provinces in His universe in a direct manner.
Rather, He is seen ruling through or in conjunction with others (angels and man).
 In the case of angels placed over provinces, such as Satan placed over the earth,
 He rules through these angels.
 In the case of Israel, His wife in the Old Testament theocracy,
 He ruled in conjunction with man

A basic, fundamental rule to remember about types is the rule of “first mention.” The first time a type is recorded in Scripture the pattern is set. Once the pattern is set, no change can ever occur. Later types will add information and cast additional light on the original type, but the original was set perfect at the beginning and remains unchanged throughout Scripture.

Types and Antitypes
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

And He said to them, "O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!

"Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?"

Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures (Luke 24:25-27).

Jesus, revealing Himself to the two disciples on the Emmaus road following His resurrection, used one means alone. He simply called their attention to the Word of God, opening the Scriptures to their understanding. He began with Moses and progressed to the other prophets, revealing “unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:27). And later that day, when He broke bread in their presence — because of His having previously revealed Himself through the Scriptures — “their eyes were opened” (Luke 24:28-31).

The clear statement is made that all of the Old Testament Scriptures are about the person and work of Christ. The Old Testament Scriptures form one continuous revelation concerning that which God, not man, has to say about the matter; and God has provided this revelation of His Son through structuring His Word after a certain fashion.

The Old Testament Scriptures not only provide an account of true history, but, through this history, these Scriptures also provide an account of all the various facets of the person and work of God’s Son — past, present, and future. And the latter has been accomplished through God structuring Old Testament history after such a fashion that Scripture becomes highly typical in nature.

The Old Testament Scriptures form the beginning point. This is where God set the matter forth first. And, accordingly, any correct study surrounding anything which God has revealed about His Son — which would include everything in Scripture (Colossians 1:15-19) — must begin where God began with the matter. Such a study must begin in the Old Testament.

And, not only must such a study begin in the Old Testament, but the Old Testament Scriptures must be viewed after a certain fashion. They must be viewed after the fashion in which they were written. They must be viewed after the fashion in which God structured His Word after a typical fashion. Only through so doing can man come into a correct understanding of that which God has revealed.

Place and Importance of Types

Typology is the great unexplored mine in the Old Testament. Studying the types will open the door to an inexhaustible wealth of  information which God has provided, information necessary to properly understand God’s revelation to man. On the other hand, it goes without saying that ignoring the types, as so many have done, will produce the opposite result and leave this door closed.

Note Paul’s statement concerning this matter in his first epistle to the Christians in Corinth:

“Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples [Gk. tupoi, ‘types’]: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world [Gk. aionon, ‘ages’] are come” (I Corinthians 10:11).

I Corinthians 10:11 draws from a context (I Corinthians 10:1-10) which refers to the history of Israel, extending from events immediately following the death of the firstborn in Egypt to the overthrow of an entire accountable generation in the wilderness, save Caleb and Joshua (Exodus 12 - Deuteronomy. 34).

However, the thought of events occurring as types in I Corinthians 10:11 must, of necessity, encompass a much larger scope than this one segment in the history of Israel, which it does. Christ’s statements in Luke 24:25-27, 44; John 5:45-47, along with the evident structure of Old Testament history, leave no room to question the fact that all of Old Testament history must be viewed as highly typical.

Old Testament typology begins, not with the death of the firstborn in Exodus 12, but with the account of the creation of the heavens and the earth in Genesis 1. Biblical typology begins at the point where Biblical history begins.

God, in the beginning, created the heavens and the earth. And at a later point in time, the creation, because of an act of Satan, was reduced to a ruin. Then, at a still later point in time, God set about to restore this ruined creation over a six-day period. And He created man on the sixth day, following the completion of the restoration. God then rested on the seventh day (Genesis 1:1-2:3).

This entire account in the opening verses of Genesis is fraught with significance and meaning. The account has not only been arranged in a typical fashion but it has been set in a septenary structure as well. The entire 7,000-year history of man can be seen in these verses through the manner in which God structured His Word at the very outset. Beginning with the creation of the heavens and the earth, the whole of that which God revealed throughout all of subsequent Scripture can be seen in four parts:

Creation (Genesis 1:1),

Ruin (Genesis 1:2a),

Restoration (Genesis 1:2-31 [2b]), and

Rest (Genesis 2:1-3).

(This typical account with its septenary structure [Genesis 1:1-2:3] actually forms the foundation upon which the whole of subsequent Scripture rests. And all subsequent Scripture, seen in its true light in this respect, merely forms a commentary on that revealed at the beginning, in Genesis 1:1-2:3.)

In Genesis 3, the original type of the coming Redeemer is set forth in the act of Adam after Eve had sinned. Adam partook of that associated with sin (fruit from the same tree which Eve had partaken of, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil) in order to bring about Eve’s redemption; and this was done with a view to both Adam and Eve one day being able to partake of the tree of life together.

The Last Adam, Christ, was made “sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him” (II Corinthians 5:21; cf. Romans 5:14; I Corinthians 15:45). And, in complete accord with the types, this, as well, was done with a view to Christ and His bride one day being able to partake of the tree of life together.

Then Genesis 4, providing additional commentary on that revealed in chapter three, sets forth the death of Abel at the hands of Cain; and this forms a type of the death of Christ at the hands of Israel.

Genesis 5; 6; 7; 8 set forth the generations of Adam, followed by the Noachian Flood. Two individuals stand out prominently in the latter part of the genealogical record:

Enoch, the seventh from Adam, and Noah, the tenth from Adam.

(“Seven” and “ten” are numbers that Scripture uses to show completeness.  “Seven” shows the completeness of that which is in view [used as God’s number in this respect], and “ten” shows numerical completeness.)

Enoch, at the end of one complete period of time, was removed from the earth before the Flood.  Noah, at the end of another complete period of time, was left on the earth to pass through the Flood.

“The Flood” is a type of the coming Tribulation.  “Enoch” typifies the one new man “in Christ” (comprised of all Christians), who will be removed at the end of the present dispensation, at the end of one complete period of time.  And “Noah” typifies the nation of Israel, which will be left on the earth to pass safely through the Tribulation, “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7) — completing the last seven years of the previous dispensation, at the end of another complete period of time, with a new beginning, the Messianic Era, to follow.

Genesis is the book (Genesis 14:18) in which we are first introduced to Melchizedek, a king-priest in Jerusalem. And Melchizedek typifies Christ in His coming glory as the great King-Priest in Jerusalem.

It is in Genesis that we find Scripture forming detailed dispensational structures several places. One such place — covering events extending from the birth of Christ to the Messianic Kingdom — can be seen in Genesis 21-25.

And Genesis is the book which contains one of the most complete overall types of Christ to be found in the Old Testament — the life of Joseph, beginning in Genesis 37.

“No one, I suppose, who has ever thought upon it, can doubt that this history [that of Joseph] is typical.” -- Andrew Jukes

Note Jesus’ statement, followed by Luke’s comment, after Jesus had suddenly appeared in the midst of His disciples in His resurrection body:

Now He said to them, "These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled."

Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures (Luke 24:44-45).

During His earthly ministry, Jesus often drew from Old Testament typology to teach spiritual lessons concerning Himself. He drew from things surrounding the tabernacle, and from various experiences of the Israelites: “I am the door” (John 10:7, 9); “I am the bread of life” (John 6:35, 48-51); “I am the light of the world” (John 9:5). Jesus told Nicodemus that the serpent lifted up in the wilderness foreshadowed that which was about to happen to the Son of Man, Who must also be lifted up (John 3:14). In response to the Scribes and Pharisees request for a sign, Jesus declared that the experiences of Jonah foreshadowed things which He would experience (Matthew 12:38-41). Note also His reference to Solomon in this same passage (Matthew 12:42).

Referring to conditions which would prevail upon the earth immediately before His return, Jesus called the disciples’ attention to the days of Noah and the days of Lot (Luke 17:26-32). Events during the days of these two men typify events which are presently beginning to occur on earth, events which will come to full fruition immediately preceding Christ’s return.

Then during the latter part of His ministry Jesus taught by parables. And many things in these parables can be properly understood only in the light of the Old Testament types and symbols.

John the Baptizer referred to the position which Christ occupied in relation to an Old Testament type when he said, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Paul spoke of this same truth when he declared Christ to be “our passover” (I Corinthians 5:7).

The writer of Hebrews derived the major portion of the teachings in his book from Old Testament typology, and this book cannot be properly understood apart from viewing material in the book in a type/antitype framework.

Hebrews 3; 4 are built around the wilderness journey of the Israelites. And the key to a correct interpretation and understanding of Hebrews 6:4-6 is to be found by paralleling that which is stated in the passage with a type-antitype treatment of Hebrews 3; 4.

In Hebrews 5; 6; 7 Melchizedek is mentioned nine times; and, in the light of that revealed about Melchizedek in the Old Testament, the things stated about Melchizedek in these chapters can only be Messianic in their scope of fulfillment (cf. Genesis 14:18-19; Psalm 110:1-4).

In Hebrews 8; 9; 10, the tabernacle with its Levitical priesthood and sacrificial system is said to be a “pattern” (Gk. tupos, “type” [Hebrews 8:5]). And in Hebrews 11; 12, numerous Old Testament individuals who typify some aspect of the work of the triune Godhead in the history of Israel or in the life of the Christian are set forth.

Extent and Purpose of Types

The extent of types in the Old Testament would have to be classed as inexhaustible. Many times a complete type can be found in a single verse; other times complete types can be found in several verses taken together, or in an entire chapter; and other times complete types can be found in several chapters taken together, or in an entire book viewed as a whole. No portion of Old Testament history can be placed outside the scope of Biblical typology. Events in the Old Testament are true history fraught with types and meanings.

The Old Testament is written in such a manner that God has interwoven prophetic types into historic events. No proper study of either the Old or New Testaments can ignore types and antitypes. Accordingly, a basic value of any Bible commentary, particularly one dealing with Old Testament history, would have to be that commentary’s treatment of types and antitypes. The reason for this is very simple: The Old Testament is highly typical. The New Testament is simply the Old revealed. Thus, within the Biblical framework of correctly teaching and understanding the Word of God, types and antitypes MUST occupy a prominent place.

Jesus said,

“Search the scriptures…they are they which testify of me…

For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me” (John 5:39, 46; cf. John 1:45).

The Scriptures to which Jesus referred in John 5:39 were the Old Testament Scriptures. Not a single book of the New Testament had been written at this time. Man’s failure to understand the extent and purpose of types in the Old Testament stems from his failure to heed the words of Jesus:

“Search the scriptures [the O.T. Scriptures]…they are they which testify of me.”

The word for “search” in the Greek text implies a close examination, a thorough search, and the word is used in this passage in the sense of a hunter stalking game, who directs all his attention to marks which will lead to the quarry. An individual searching the Scriptures in this manner will fix all his attention on the Scriptures, closely examining and thoroughly searching every aspect of this revelation. The folly of those who refuse to dwell deeply in the Word can immediately be seen. Such Christians are not only robbing themselves of great spiritual blessings, but, if occupying teaching positions, they are also robbing others of these same blessings.

When Jesus met the two disciples on the road to Emmaus following His resurrection, He reprimanded them for not believing ALL that the prophets had written. And, as previously seen, He then began at “Moses and ALL the prophets,” and “expounded unto them in ALL the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:25-27).

The specific statement is made in Luke 24:27 that ALL of the Old Testament Scriptures are about Christ. If one has a mind for the things of God, according to this verse, he can turn to any portion of the Old Testament and study about Christ. ALL of the Old Testament Scriptures — beginning with Moses — constitute a complete revelation of Jesus Christ. The record of creation, all subsequent events, and all individuals, together, form the complete Old Testament revelation which God gave to man concerning all the various facets of the person and work of His Son.

The Son was with the Father in the beginning. Apart from Him not one thing which presently exists came into existence. Or, for that matter, neither does it continue to exist (cf. Genesis 1:1; John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17). The entire Old Testament — Genesis through Malachi — is about Him. Then, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…” (John 1:14a). From that point, the New Testament continues to be a revelation of God’s Son.

And the last book in the Bible — the Book of Revelation, the Revelation of Jesus Christ — is the capstone of all previous revelation, arranging in final and complete form the summation of all things which were previously revealed, beginning with “Moses and all the prophets.”

When the late Dr. M. R. DeHaan, near the close of his ministry, began to study and arrange material for a series of radio messages, entitled, Portraits of Christ, he was amazed by what he found. In the introduction to a book which was later published from this series, entitled, PORTRAITS OF CHRIST IN GENESIS, Dr. DeHaan states:

“At first the publication of a book entitled ‘Portraits of Christ’ was intended to be a study of portraits of Christ in the entire Bible. However, as I began to collect material, I realized what a hopeless task I was undertaking, and so I next limited it to portraits of Christ in the Old Testament. Again, I had not gone very far when I realized that this too was a Herculean task which could hardly be done in one volume, or even many volumes. As a result, it was shortened to ‘Portraits of Christ in the Pentateuch,’ the books of Moses. Then, finally, after completing but one chapter, I realized that I could not even begin to discuss thoroughly the portraits of Christ in the first book of the Bible alone, the Book of Genesis.

After many years of Bible study, I was amazed at the volume of material and subject matter in the Book of Genesis alone, which was the revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ. The last book of the Bible opens with ‘the revelation of Jesus Christ,’ and this may well be taken to be the title of the entire Bible, from the very first verse of Genesis, chapter one, until the close of the Book of Revelation. It is one continuous, progressive revelation concerning the Altogether Lovely One, the Son of God, and the Son of Man.”

Fundamentals of Types

A basic, fundamental rule to remember about types is the rule of “first mention.” The first time a type is recorded in Scripture the pattern is set. Once the pattern is set, no change can ever occur. Later types will add information and cast additional light on the original type, but the original was set perfect at the beginning and remains unchanged throughout Scripture.

Another fundamental rule to remember about types is in the area of “doctrine.” It is often taught that types are given merely for illustrations, and doctrine cannot be taught from types. Suffice it to say, types are far more than mere illustrations, and in the area of doctrine it would be well to ask a question, followed by a statement: “Who said doctrine cannot be taught from types? Certainly not the Scriptures!”

(“Doctrine” and “teaching” are translations of noun and verb forms of the same word in the Greek text — didaskalia and didasko.  “Teaching” is “doctrine”; “doctrine” is “teaching.”  And if “teaching” cannot be drawn from the types, of what value are the types?

Doctrine/teaching can be drawn from either or from both together.  Because of the very nature of the origin of both — through God’s sovereign control of all things — there can be absolutely no difference between the two in this respect.  Both could only have been designed and put together with the same perfection that exists within the Godhead.

The types form a part of the Word that was made Flesh.  To see imperfection in the types is to see imperfection in the Word made Flesh; to see perfection in the Word made Flesh is to see perfection in the types.)

One overall thought though should suffice to quell any ideology that doctrine/teaching cannot be drawn from the types:  Who made [designed] the type?  And who made [designed] the antitype?

Types and antitypes are exact replicas of one another. The antitype is an exact imprint or duplicate of the type. The tabernacle was formed in exact detail, in every respect, to an existing tabernacle in heaven, “according to the pattern [Gk. tupos]” given to Moses in the mount (Hebrews 8:5). The “print [Gk. tupos] of the nails” in the hands of Christ were exact imprints of the nails which had been driven into His hands (John 20:25). The truth about Biblical doctrine and types is that since the antitype is an exact imprint or duplicate of the type, doctrine can be taught from either. No distinction, one from the other, can be made in this realm.

Another fundamental rule to remember is that types, contrary to common belief, “DO NOT break down.” To say that types break down is to say that types are imperfect. God established types, and He established these types perfectly. Types break down only in the minds of finite man. If a man knew all there were to know about any particular type, that type could be followed to its nth degree and never break down.

NOTHING happened in a haphazard manner in the Old Testament. EVERYTHING occurred according to a Divine plan, established before the creation of the heavens and the earth (Hebrews 1:3; Ephesians 3:11). And events throughout the Old Testament happened as “types” in order that God might have these events and experiences of individuals to draw upon, allowing the Spirit of God to use these events and experiences to instruct Christians in the deep things of God.

Types are as accurate as mathematics.”  ~ F. B. Meyer

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Word Document:  Types and Antitypes by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Aside: The following Word Document, which is SAFE to open & print, contains over 50 pages of  types/antitypes:  Types and Antitypes as of March 20, 2021.docx

To website CONTENTS Page.

Note an ironic situation existing in the world today regarding the preceding.  The United States and Russia are currently recognized as the world’s two superpowers.  The former has a history associated with God and Christianity, the latter with atheism.

But it is not the nation associated with atheism that is pushing Satan’s homosexual agenda; rather it is the nation associated with God and Christianity.  

Satan's Corruption of Marriage
(Excerpt from Taking the Scroll, Breaking the Seals in this site -- editor's title added)
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Principles pertaining to marriage in the human realm and non-marriage in the angelic realm in relation to the government of the earth presents an interesting thought surrounding the co-habitation of the sons of God with the daughters of men in Genesis 6:1-4 [angels in the kingdom of Satan taking wives from the female lineage of Adam and his progeny, something that apparently began very early in man’s history (Genesis 6:1-2)].  A corruption of the human race could only have been Satan’s goal, with probably more than one facet of corruption in view.  And these facets of corruption would have a single purpose — to prevent man from ascending the throne and fulfilling the reason for his creation in the beginning.

Not only would there have been an effort to prevent the appearance of the Seed of the woman promised at the time of man’s fall [Genesis 3:15] but there would have been an effort to corrupt and destroy that which God had established in the beginning concerning the manner in which man was to conduct appointed regal activities, through a husband-wife relationship.  And an effort to prevent the latter would have been brought to pass through a corruption of the husband-wife relationship by the recorded co-habitation between fallen incumbent rulers and fallen female members of God’s new entity that had been created to rule.

This same thing can subsequently be seen occurring in a homosexual manner among those in the land covenanted to Abraham and his seed during the days of Abraham and Lot [Genesis 18; 19; Jude 1:6-7], along with a heterosexual manner once again among those in this same land during the days of Moses [Numbers 13:31-33].

Is it any wonder that God eventually stepped in during Noah’s day, bringing about a worldwide flood [Genesis 6:11ff]?  or during Abraham and Lot’s day, utterly destroying the cities of the plain [Genesis 19:24ff]?  or during Moses’ day by telling His people to go into the land and, “with a mighty destruction,” do away with all of the nations therein [Deuteronomy 7:1-2, 16, 22-24]?

And, with the rapidly changing mores of man concerning homosexuality during the present day and time, is it any wonder that God is about to once again step into the affairs of the human race, bringing about a climactic end to the whole of the matter, ultimately placing man in the position for which he was created in the beginning?

As it was in the days of Noah . . .

Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot. . .

Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. [Luke 17:26a, 28a, 30].

Note an ironic situation existing in the world today regarding the preceding.  The United States and Russia are currently recognized as the world’s two superpowers.  The former has a history associated with God and Christianity, the latter with atheism.

But it is not the nation associated with atheism that is pushing Satan’s homosexual agenda; rather it is the nation associated with God and Christianity.

The latter is the nation picking up and seemingly leading the way where the cities of the plain during Abraham's day left off, not the former [in fact, homosexuality is unlawful in Russia (a nation associated with atheism is the one following biblical guidelines in this realm, not the nation associated with God and Christianity)].  The latter, not the former, is the nation today following one of the sure paths to national suicide [not only from a biblical standpoint but seen throughout man’s secular history as well].  And the latter, not the former, is the nation whose actions run completely contrary to the reason God established marriage between a man and a woman in the beginning.

When and how will all of this end?  That’s the simplest question in the world to answer:

All of this will end when and how Scripture states that it will end.  And Scripture is quite plain about one thing.  That day when God will once again step into the affairs of the human race and bring about these changes is almost upon us.

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Word Document:  Satan's Corruption of Marriage by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Who was Laban in the Bible?
By Got Questions

The Bible first mentions Laban in Genesis 24:29. Laban was the brother of Isaac’s wife, Rebekah. Abraham had sent his trusted servant back to his home country to find a wife for Isaac among his relatives (Genesis 24:2–4). When the servant found Rebekah, he made the purpose of his visit known, and she ran and told her father’s household the news. Her brother Laban came out to welcome the servant and invited him to stay with them.

Laban was involved in the decision to allow his sister to travel to a foreign land and marry a man she had never met (Genesis 24:50, 55). Laban may have been the eldest son in his family, as the Bible records specifically that he played the role of host to Abraham’s servant and had the right to voice an opinion on his sister’s future (Genesis 24:29, 50, 55).

We near nothing more of Laban until many years later when Isaac and Rebekah send their son Jacob back to those same relatives to find a wife (Genesis 28:1–2). Jacob returned to his mother’s homeland and met Laban’s daughter Rachel, with whom he fell madly in love (Genesis 29:18). Laban promised to give Rachel to Jacob if he would work for him for seven years (Genesis 29:19–20).

However, Laban proved to be as duplicitous as Jacob himself. After Jacob had served the time agreed upon, Laban tricked Jacob and switched brides on the wedding night. When Jacob awoke the next morning, he found he had spent the night with Laban’s older daughter, Leah (Genesis 29:25). Infuriated, Jacob demanded an explanation. Laban replied, “It is not our custom here to give the younger daughter in marriage before the older one. Finish this daughter’s bridal week; then we will give you the younger one also, in return for another seven years of work” (Genesis 29:26–27).

Laban continued to connive throughout his and Jacob’s twenty-year relationship (Genesis 31:38). However, God blessed Jacob because Jacob was His choice to carry on the covenant He had made with his grandfather Abraham (Genesis 28:11–15). Genesis 31:1–3 indicates that Laban’s sons were jealous of Jacob because of how much God had prospered him. They said, “‘Jacob has taken everything our father owned and has gained all this wealth from what belonged to our father.’ And Jacob noticed that Laban’s attitude toward him was not what it had been. Then the Lord said to Jacob, ‘Go back to the land of your fathers and to your relatives, and I will be with you.’”

Fearful that Laban would take his wives, children, and everything he had, Jacob fled in the night, taking what he owned. However, unbeknownst to Jacob, Rachel had stolen her father’s household idols (Genesis 31:19, 34). When Laban learned of the departure of Jacob and his family, he pursued them. He caught up with them, and he rebuked Jacob for sneaking off. Then the idolater Laban demanded the return of his pagan images. But Jacob knew nothing of Rachel’s theft, and he scolded Laban for accusing him. Laban never found his idols.

The last mention of Laban in the Bible is after he had rebuked Jacob for disappearing without notice. After their exchange of angry words, Laban suggested that they make a covenant (Genesis 31:44). This overture appears to have been motivated by fear that Jacob might return to harm him (Genesis 31:52). Although there is no indication that Laban worshiped the Lord, he did hold a healthy fear of Him and invoked the name of Jacob’s God in forming the covenant between them (Genesis 31:49–50). Laban and his son-in-law shared a meal, and then Laban kissed his children and grandchildren and returned home.

After Laban said good-bye, Jacob and his family were free to continue their journey to the land God had given them. Whether he knew it or not, Laban's trickery played a large part in God’s plan for humanity, as his grandsons would grow up to become tribal eponyms of eight of the twelve tribes, known as Israel (Genesis 49:28; Revelation 21:12).

The sons born to Leah:

Reubensee, a son (Genesis 29:32), Simeonhearing (Genesis 29:33), Levijoined (Genesis 29:34), Judahpraise (Genesis 29:35), Issacharhire (Genesis 30:18), Zebulundwelling (Genesis 30:20)

The sons born to Rachel:

Josephadding (Genesis 30:24), Benjaminson of the right hand (Genesis 35:18)

The sons born to Bilhah, the handmaid of Rachel:

Danjudge (Genesis 30:6), Naphtaliwrestling (Genesis 30:8)

The sons born to Zilpah, handmaid of Leah:

Gad a troop or good fortune (Genesis 30:11), Asherhappy (Genesis 30:13)

Jacob's twelve sons (in order of birth), Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph and Benjamin, become the ancestors of twelve tribes, with the exception of Joseph, whose two sons Mannasseh and Ephraim, who were adopted by Jacob, become tribal eponyms (Genesis 48).

To website CONTENTS Page.

With the movement of the Spirit, using the God-breathed Word, man's spirit is made alive and, at the same time, separated from his soul.

The “soul” remains within the sphere of darkness, which is why “the natural [Greek: psuchikos, ‘soulical’] man” cannot understand “the things of the Spirit of God”.

Light vs. Darkness

In Genesis 1:4 a division is made between the light and the darkness:

And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.

Light then shines “out of darkness”:

For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)

And the darkness has no apprehension or comprehension of that which is light:

This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.  (John 1:5)

But the natural man [unsaved] does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:14)

It is at this point in man’s salvation that the spirit is separated from the soul.  The “spirit” in unsaved man is dead.  It is a part of the totally depraved man, with his “body of . . . death,” in which there dwells “no good thing”:

For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find.

O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?  (Romans 7:18, 24)

With the movement of the Spirit, using the God-breathed Word, man's spirit is made alive and, at the same time, separated from his soul.

The “soul” remains within the sphere of darkness, which is why “the natural [Greek: psuchikos, ‘soulical’] man” cannot understand “the things of the Spirit of God”:

But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.  (1 Corinthians 2:14)

That which remains in the sphere of darkness can have no apprehension or comprehension of that which has shined out of darkness.  There is a God-established division between the spirit and the soul that cannot be crossed over (cf. Luke 16:26).

The soul [darkness], that remains in us, sins, not the spirit [light].  To say the spirit in us can sin is to say Christ can sin, because those of us who are saved are “in Christ”.  We are part of His body:

Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him.

Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.

We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him. (1 John 3:6, 9; 5:18)

In summary, we who are saved MUST endeavor to make the soul [darkness, old man] in us die.  To do this we MUST, as a continuous process, be filled with the Holy Spirit.  Today’s filling will NOT do for tomorrow.  The amount of dying of the soul [darkness, old man] in us is 'inversely proportional' to the amount of filling of the Holy Spirit. The MORE we're filled with the Holy Spirit the MORE of the soul [darkness, old man] dies in us.  Therefore the more filled we are of the Holy Spirit the MORE the Holy Spirit works through US instead of self [soul, darkness, old man] working through us.

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Word Document:  Light vs. Darkness.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

In this website, KKK God's Word One, see Holy Spirit – Ministries and Filling! for commentary on how to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Also see the Word Document Old Man did Not Die with Christ, but was Crucified with Christ!.docx, which is SAFE to open and print.

To website CONTENTS Page.

A Woman, A Dragon and A Male Child are Metaphors

In Revelation 12, three main metaphors are used — one to describe “Israel” (a woman), one to describe “Satan” (a dragon), and one to describe “the 144,000” (a male child, that the woman brings forth near the middle of the Tribulation). All three metaphors are identified in the chapter, and the manner in which the male child is identified not only connects this metaphor with the 144,000 but it also provides the connection that the 144,000 have with the two witnesses in the previous chapter, in Revelation 11.

(The male child, in commentaries and other studies on the book of Revelation, is usually identified as “Christ.” But this identification is not possible. Note that Israel brings forth the male child in Revelation 12 after all seven heads of the beast in Revelation 13 have been crowned, with diadems, which cannot occur until near the middle of the Tribulation [Revelation 12:3-5]; Israel brings forth the male child shortly after Satan and his angels have been cast out of the heavens onto the earth, which, contextually, will occur near the middle of the Tribulation [Revelation 12:4-5]; and Israel brings forth the male child shortly before Antichrist breaks his covenant with the nation and the Jewish people flee for their lives [Revelation 12:5-6, 13ff].)

The identities of all three metaphors in Revelation 12 are easily seen. The woman can be identified with “Israel” several ways. One way would be through statements made about her fleeing into the wilderness (Revelation 12:6, 14; cf. Matthew 24:16ff). And the dragon is specifically stated to be “Satan” (Revelation 12:9).

(Note that Satan and the kingdom of Antichrist are spoken of in an inseparable manner in this chapter, Revelation 12:3-4], which is easy to understand from that which is revealed about Satan and Antichrist in the next chapter. After Antichrist comes into the power that he sought by riding out on a white horse in Revelation 6, Satan gives to this man “his power, his throne [giving him regal power over the earth], and great authority” [Revelation 13:2b; cf. Luke 4:5-6].)

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Word Document:  A Woman, A Dragon, and A Male Child, are Metaphors.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

The following Word Document is also SAFE to open and print:  The Beast and the Woman by Arlen Chitwood.docx

See Souls Under the AltarMystery of The Woman BOOK and A Woman, a Dragon, a Male Child in this site for additional commentary.

To website CONTENTS Page.

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).

Christians and Politics
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Subjects:
 

A HEAVENLY CALLING, INHERITANCE

Israel's Calling is EARTHLY, but the Christians' is HEAVENLY

(Christians are being urged on practically every hand to involve themselves in the political structure of this present world system.  Politicians single out and make appeals to particular groups of Christians, they speak in Christian colleges, in Churches, and numerous ministers throughout the land urge their people to become involved.

What is this all about?  Are Christians to involve themselves in the political structure of this present world system?

If so, Why?  If not, Why not?

Answers to those questions are what the two parts of this article are about.)

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.

According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children [sons] by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will…

Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself.

That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth, even in him.

In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will” (Ephesians 1:3-5, 9-11).

Christians have a heavenly calling, a heavenly hope, a heavenly inheritance, a heavenly citizenship, heavenly blessings, and they are confronted with an ever-present heavenly battle against the present rulers who occupy the heavenly land to which they have been called (Ephesians 1:3; 6:11-18; Philippians 3:20; Colossians 1:5; Hebrews 3:1; I Peter 1:4).

The one book in the New Testament which, in its overall structure, possibly sets forth that facet of truth dealing with the Christians’ relationship to the heavenly land better than any other is Paul’s epistle to the Ephesians.  Paul used the expression “in heavenly places [lit., ‘in the heavenlies’]” five different times in the six chapters of this epistle.  Two of these times, the Christians’ position in the heavenlies is in view (Ephesians 1:3; 2:6);  two other times, the position of Satan and his angels in the heavenlies comes into view (Ephesians 3:10; 6:12);  and the other time, the position of Christ at the right hand of God, also in a heavenly place, is in view (Ephesians 1:20).

The Christians’ Position — In the Heavens

Revelation in Paul’s letter to the Ephesians begins by revealing blessings awaiting Christians “in heavenly places [‘in the heavenlies’] in Christ,” and terminates by revealing a present warfare confronting Christians against “spiritual wickedness in high places [‘the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenlies’]” (Ephesians 1:3; 6:12).

The heavenlies, wherein blessings are to be realized in chapter one, and the heavenlies in which the enemy presently resides in chapters three and six, must be looked upon as one and the same.

The Christians’ positional standing is “in Christ” in the heavens where God Himself dwells;  but, contextually, the spiritual blessings in view are to be realized by Christians as they move in, conquer, and dwell in the heavenly land held by the enemy in chapter six.  In this respect, there are heavenly blessings for present victorious engagements of the enemy, and there are heavenly blessings awaiting victorious Christians in that coming day when the enemy will finally be dislodged from the land.

Contextually, the blessings in chapter one are associated with the “adoption” (Ephesians 1:5), the “dispensation of the fulness of times” (Ephesians 1:10), the “inheritance” (Ephesians 1:11, 14, 18), and the “wisdom and revelation in the knowledge [Gk., epignosis, ‘mature knowledge’] of him” (Ephesians 1:17).  Such blessings to be realized by Christians are, thus, intimately associated with the heavenly land to which they have been called;  and the entire matter is projected out into the coming age, but not to the exclusion of the present dispensation.

The present spiritual warfare in the heavenlies is with a view to the coming age, but spiritual blessings await the victors during both present and future time.  There can be no future occupation of the land apart from a present warfare against the enemy;  and the blessings extend throughout both eras.

Ephesians moves progressively from chapter one into things relative to eternal salvation and the revelation of the mystery in chapters two and three.  Believing Gentiles have been placed together in the same body with believing Jews.  God has broken down the “middle wall of partition” by creating one new man, where there is neither “Jew nor Greek” (Ephesians 2:8-16; cf. Galatians 3:28).

Believing Jews and believing Gentiles, together in one body, forming the one new man, then become “fellowheirs” of the heavenly promises and blessings in view (Galatians 3:6; cf. Galatians 3:29).  The very purpose for an individual’s salvation is to be realized through the reception of the inheritance introduced in chapter one and continued in chapters two and three.

The Christians’ association with the heavenlies is presently being made known to the “principalities and powers in heavenly places [‘in the heavenlies’]” “by [‘through’] the church” (Ephesians 3:9-10).

God is making known to the incumbent rulers in the heavenlies that they are about to be replaced;  and He is making this known through the ones who are destined to occupy these positions, the ones presently engaging the enemy in the heavenlies.

Ephesians then continues by exhorting Christians to walk worthy of their high calling (Ephesians 4:1ff) and revealing the need for pastor-teachers in the Church (Ephesians 4:11-16).  Pastor-teachers have been placed in the Church to lead Christians into a mature knowledge of, contextually, their calling in relation to the heavenlies.

Christians are to know about the blessings awaiting them in the heavenlies, the coming dispensation, the inheritance, the mystery, etc.  And to make this known, in the strict Biblical sense, is the primary task of pastor-teachers.

The latter part of chapter four and the first part of chapter five continue with thoughts and exhortations concerning walking worthy of one’s high calling;  and this is followed by related material in the latter part of chapter five and the first part of chapter six concerning the relationship of husbands and wives, children and parents, and servants and masters.

Then, at the conclusion of the epistle, in the latter part of chapter six, the crux of the entire matter comes into view.

Beginning in Ephesians 6:10, the Apostle Paul says, “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”  The engagement with the enemy now comes to the forefront in the epistle.  The enemy is revealed, and the proper armor with which the Christian is to clothe himself is given (Ephesians 6:12-17).

The Christians’ Warfare — In the Heavens

There is a battle to be fought, and there is a victory to be won.  This battle not only requires extensive preparation but also the correct armor;  and pastor-teachers in the Church are to see that Christians placed under their care become properly equipped to engage the enemy in the battle at hand (cf. Ephesians 3:10-11; 4:11-16; 6:11-18).

Going forth to battle, one’s loins are to be girded with truth (showing truthfulness, earnestness, and sincerity in the conflict).

A person is to have on the breastplate of righteousness (showing a righteous manner of living).

His feet are to be shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (showing that the messenger properly understands and is able to proclaim both present and future aspects of salvation).

He is to take the shield of faith (showing faithfulness to act in the realm God has commanded).

He is to put on the helmet of salvation (showing a hope relative to a future salvation [the salvation of the soul]).

And he is to take the sword of the Spirit (showing an acquisition of the Word of God).

Only in this fashion can a Christian stand in a victorious manner against “the wiles of the devil.”

(Ref. The author’s commentary in this site, The Whole Armor of God, for a fuller discussion of Ephesians 6:14-17.)

One’s faithfulness in the entire realm of proper preparation is the primary prerequisite.  As in Jude 1:3, one is to “earnestly contend for the faith [i.e., ‘earnestly strive for (with reference to, in the good contest of) the faith’].”  He, according to the parallel passage in I Timothy 6:12, is to “Fight the good fight of faith [lit., ‘Strive in the good contest of the faith’]”;  and, in this manner he is to “lay hold on eternal life [lit., ‘lay hold on life for the age’ (a future salvation, to be realized during the Messianic Era, associated in the text with his calling)].”

The words translated “contend” in Jude 1:3 and “fight” in I Timothy 6:12 are from epagonizomai and agonizomai respectively in the Greek text.  Note that the only difference in these two words is the prefix “ep” in Jude (this is the preposition epi [‘upon’] prefixed to the word [the “i” is dropped when epi is prefixed to a word beginning with a vowel]).  Epi, used in this manner, intensifies the meaning of the word, providing the translation, “earnestly contend [‘earnestly strive’].”

Agonizomai is the Greek word from which our English word “agonize” is derived.  The word could more properly be translated “strive,” as in Luke 13:24 and I Corinthians 9:25.  Every muscle is to be strained, every effort is to be expended, in the “good contest of the faith.”

In Jude 1:3-5 this contest is associated with entrance into the land to which Christians have been called, drawing from the type of the Israelites under Moses;  and the false teachers in these verses are seeking, through that which they are teaching, to mislead and thus prevent Christians from entering this land (ref. the ten unfaithful spies during Moses’ day and the results of their message).

However, Christians following the admonition in Jude 1:3 need not fear the false teachers in Jude 1:4, nor fear being numbered among the unfaithful in Jude 1:5.  Such Christians will experience victory after victory in the battle and partake of rich spiritual blessings which the Lord has reserved for His conquerors, both now and in the coming age.

Seated on the Throne — In the Heavens

Dare to be a Caleb!  Dare to be a Joshua!

Rewards for those who so govern their lives will be the same as Caleb and Joshua’s — present victory, and the ultimate possession of one’s inheritance (Joshua 13:7-14; 19:48-50).

As Christ is today seated with His Father on His Father’s throne, He is inviting Christians to one day sit with Him on His Own throne (Psalm 110:1; Revelation 3:21), which will be located in the heavens — located in the place from which Satan and his angels rule today, with Christ and His co-heirs replacing Satan and his angels in that day.

Christ, having a reign both from the heavens and upon earth in that day, will rule from His Own throne with His co-heirs in the heavens and from David’s throne in Israel’s midst on earth (Joel 2:27-32; Luke 1:31-33; Revelation 3:21).  And these two thrones should NEVER be confused with one another.

Israel’s calling is earthly, connected with David’s throne;  the Church’s calling is heavenly, connected with Christ’s Own throne.  And overcoming Christians will sit with Christ on His throne in the heavens, not with Him on David’s throne on earth.

DEFILING ONE’S HIGH CALLING

Christian Involvement in the Affairs of this World

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]).

(Note Appendix I at the end of this article for an overview of Satan’s present rule among the Gentile nations and what involvement in the political structure of the present kingdom under Satan would actually involve.)

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).  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.

Or, referencing the overall typology of I, II Samuel, involvement of this nature would be comparable to David’s faithful men during his time of exile (1 Samuel 19:1ff; 1 Samuel 22:1-2) leaving their place with David, going back to Saul’s kingdom, and involving themselves in his kingdom.

(Note Appendix II at the end of this article for a succinct overview of the typology of Saul and David in I, II Samuel.)

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.

APPENDIX I

THE RULE OF SATAN AND HIS ANGELS

From what realm do Satan and his angels presently rule?

It is clear from both Old and New Testament Scriptures that they rule from a heavenly realm over the earth.  Satan and his angels have access to the earth and rule through the Gentile nations on the earth (Genesis 6:2-4; Job 1:7; 2:2; Daniel 10:12-21; I Peter 5:8; Jude 1:6), but they themselves do not rule on the earth.

Daniel 10 presents certain insights into how the present kingdom of Satan is structured, along with the location of those administering power and authority in this kingdom.

In Daniel 10, a heavenly messenger who had been dispatched to Daniel on the earth from that part of the heavens where God resides and rules (“the uttermost parts of the north [a superlative in the Hebrew text]” — the northernmost point in the universe in relation to the earth [Isaiah 14:13 ASV]) was detained at a point enroute.  This messenger was detained in the heavens above the earth by “the prince of the kingdom of Persia.”

Then Michael was dispatched from heaven, and the messenger remained there with “the kings of Persia” while Michael fought with the prince of Persia for his release (Daniel 10:13).

The picture presented is that of powerful angels in the kingdom of Satan ruling the earth from a heavenly realm (a heavenly realm in relation to the earth) through counterparts in the human race on earth.

There was a prince (ruler) of Persia in the heavens, and there was a prince (ruler) of Persia on the earth.  Then, in the heavens, there were lesser rulers associated with Persia (the kings of Persia);  and the same would have been true in the earthly kingdom (cf. Daniel 2:39; 5:28-31; 7:5; 8:3-6, 20).

Then beyond that “the prince of Greece” is mentioned — another heavenly ruler, the angelic heavenly ruler over the Grecian kingdom on earth (Daniel 10:20).

And the reason why attention is called to this heavenly ruler is easy to see and understand.  Daniel, throughout his book, deals with the kingdom of Babylon, from the days of Nebuchadnezzar to the days of Antichrist;  and Daniel 10:20, “…the prince of Greece shall come,” anticipated that day when Alexander the Great in the Grecian kingdom on earth would conquer the kingdom of Babylon under the Medes and the Persians (cf. Daniel 2:39; 7:6; 8:7-8, 21-22).

Thus, there is not only a breakdown of powers in the heavenly kingdom under Satan corresponding to a breakdown of powers in various earthly kingdoms under fallen man but there is also a shifting of powers in the heavenly kingdom corresponding to a shifting of powers in the earthly kingdoms.  In this respect, any person occupying a position of power in any Gentile earthly kingdom during the present age is merely occupying a position of power under Satan and his angels, as they rule from the heavens through counterparts on the earth.

(Note that the nation of Israel is the lone exception among nations on earth whose rulers presently hold positions of power and authority under fallen angels in the kingdom of Satan.

The prince over Israel is Michael [Daniel 10:21], an angelic prince in the heavens who is not numbered among those ruling in Satan’s kingdom, as Israel is not numbered among the nations [Numbers 23:9].

And Michael, undoubtedly, has a great host of angels ruling with and under him, as Satan has a great host of angels ruling with and under him.

The whole of the matter is a rule by angels from two places in the heavens through individuals from the human race on earth — one through the nation of Israel, the other through all of the Gentile nations.)

APPENDIX II

SAUL AND DAVID
SATAN AND CHRIST

The complete story of Scripture, as it would pertain to Satan, Christ, Christians, Israel, and the nations was foreshadowed typically by the account of Saul and David in the Books of I, II Samuel.

Saul was anointed king over Israel (I Samuel 10:1);  but Saul disqualified himself by refusing, as God had commanded, to destroy the Amalekites and all of their possessions (I Samuel 15:1ff), though Saul continued to reign.  And Saul would continue to reign until the one whom God had chosen to replace him was not only on the scene but ready to ascend the throne.

Then, note that which the type, thus far, foreshadows:

Satan was anointed king over the earth (Ezekiel 28:14);  but Satan disqualified himself through seeking to extend his rule beyond his God-appointed position (Isaiah 14:13-15), though Satan continued to reign.  And Satan would continue to reign until the One Whom God had chosen to replace him was not only on the scene but ready to ascend the throne.

In the type, shortly after God rejected Saul as Israel’s ruler, God had Samuel anoint David king over Israel (I Samuel 16:10-13).  There were then two anointed kings in Israel.

But David didn’t immediately ascend the throne.  Rather, he eventually found himself in a place out in the hills, separated from Saul and his kingdom.  And, during this time, certain faithful men joined themselves to David and remained out in the hills with him (I Samuel 22:1-2).

The day though eventually came when David was ready to ascend the throne, possessing a contingent of faithful men ready to rule with him.  Then, Saul was put down, his crown was taken and given to David, and David and his faithful men moved in and took over the government.

In the antitype, after God had rejected Satan as the earth’s ruler, God anointed His Son King over the earth (Psalms 45:6-7, 16; Hebrews 1:8-9; cf. Matthew 2:1-2).  There were then, and there are today, two anointed Kings over the earth.

But God’s Son, as David in the type, didn’t immediately ascend the throne.  Rather, as David, Christ finds Himself in a place of exile, separated from the kingdom.  And, as in David’s case, certain faithful individuals join themselves to Christ during this time, remaining in the place of exile with Him (Matthew 16:24-27; John 14:1-3; I John 2:28).

The day is near at hand though when matters will continue exactly as seen in the type.  Christ, in that day, as David in his day, will be ready to ascend the throne, possessing a contingent of faithful followers to rule with Him.  Then, Satan, as Saul, will be put down, his crown will be taken and given to Christ, and Christ, with His faithful followers, will move in and take over the government (II Samuel 1:1-16; 5:3, 4; Daniel 7:13-14; Revelation 2:26-27; 3:21; 19:11ff).

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Word Document:  Christians and Politics by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print:  Identity of both the Political Power and the Harlot in Revelation 17 1-19 6 by Arlen Chitwood.docx

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The present age, looking back in time, covers the entire period of the “prophets,” which, of necessity, would have to include not only Enoch (who “prophesied” over 1,500 years prior to the appearance of Moses [Jude 1:14]), but also Adam.

Prophets
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast
Excerpt from 
Ages and Dispensations in this site.

The reference to God’s “prophets” in Luke 1:70 and Acts 3:21 should be understood in a somewhat broader sense than the word “prophet” is usually thought of today.  The word appears quite often (about 150 times in the New Testament) and is used as a title given to the person whom the Lord had chosen to communicate — “announce,” “declare” — His message to the people; and the message did not necessarily have to be prophetic per se for the title “prophet” to be used of the messenger.

This title is used referring to those chosen at different times to declare the will and purpose of God by/through either a written revelation or an oral expression.

It is used of individuals preceding the existence of the nation of Israel (Jude 1:14), of individuals in Israel (Matthew 23:37; Luke 24:27), of individuals in the first century Church prior to the completion of the canon of Scripture (1 Corinthians 12:28; 13:9-10; Ephesians 4:11), and of individuals in Israel once again yet future (Joel 2:27-28; Revelation 11:3, 10).

In this respect, all of those chosen to write portions of the Word of God, beginning with Moses and ending with John, could be called “prophets.”  And others, such as Enoch or Noah who communicated the message of God in an oral manner to the people of their day — though they were not chosen to write particular sections of Scripture — could also be looked upon after this same fashion (cf. 2 Peter 2:5; Jude 1:14).  In fact, this word, in its strict Scriptural usage, could be used to refer to certain individuals all the way back to and including Adam himself.

(The first recorded statement by Adam, which concerned an existing relationship between himself and Eve, has far-reaching ramifications.  It has to do with “a great mystery” that God desires His people to know and understand, for it concerns an existing relationship between Christ and the Church.
The former forms the type and the latter the antitype, and this mystery can be seen in its correct proper perspective only by viewing both the type and antitype together [cf. Genesis 2:23-24; Ephesians 5:21-32].)

Aside: The following Word Document, which is Safe to open and print, contains over 50 pages of types/antitypes: Types and Antitypes as of March 20, 2021.docx

The age in which Jesus lived at the time of His earthly ministry is, thus, not only seen in Scripture as extending forward to the beginning of the Messianic Era but it is also seen as extending back to the beginning of man’s existence on the earth.  Comparing the different ways aion (age) is used in Luke 1:70; John 9:32; Acts 3:21; 15:18, a person can arrive at only one conclusion.  The present age, looking back in time, covers the entire period of the “prophets,” which, of necessity, would have to include not only Enoch (who “prophesied” over 1,500 years prior to the appearance of Moses [Jude 1:14]), but also Adam.

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The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print:  Prophets by Arlen Chitwood.docx

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This is what the whole of Scripture, beginning in the opening verses of Genesis, anticipates; and to bring the matter to pass, the Son, in conjunction with His co-heirs in the heavens and the nation of Israel on the earth, will rule the earth for the duration of that seventh day — for 1,000 years — foreshadowed by the seventh day seen at the very beginning, in Genesis 2:1-3.

The Future Kingdom
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast
Excerpt from 
Heavenly and Earthly in this site.

Satan and his angels are to be put down, and Christ and His co-heirs are to take the kingdom.  That is the clear testimony of Scripture, beginning in Genesis and concluding in Revelation.  The matter will occur after exactly the same fashion set forth in Daniel 4:17.

. . . By the decree of the watchers, and the sentence by the word of the holy ones, in order that the living may know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, gives it to whomever He will . . . . (Daniel 4:17)

The Most High will one day give the kingdom to His Son (Daniel 7:13-14; cf. Revelation 11:15), Satan and his angels will be put down (exactly as Nebuchadnezzar in history was put down, for that will be “the decree of the most High” [Daniel 4:23-31]), and the Son will then take the kingdom and rule, holding the scepter.

At that time God will place redeemed, qualified individuals in positions of power and authority as co-heirs with His Son (Daniel 4:17, 25, 32; Matthew 20:23); and Christ, with His co-heirs, will hold the scepter (cf. Psalm 2:6-9; Revelation 2:26-27).

Christ’s co-heirs will have previously been shown qualified at the judgment seat; and following the Father positioning these co-heirs on the throne with His Son, Christ and His co-heirs (who will form His wife in that day) will then rule the earth from His throne in the heavenly Jerusalem for 1,000 years.

Israel will have been restored to the nation’s earthly land, and the kingdom covenanted to David will have been restored to Israel.  David’s throne will have been given to Christ; and He will rule from this throne on the earth as well as from His own throne in the heavens.

Thus, Christ will have a dual reign during the Messianic Era.  And it will be after this fashion that Christ will exercise power and authority over the earth for 1,000 years.

Christ’s rule from the heavens will involve His co-heirs (His wife), who will exercise power and authority with Him over the nations.  And Christ’s rule on the earth will involve the Jewish people (the restored wife of Jehovah) who will also exercise power and authority with Him over the nations.

Accordingly, the Gentile nations, in this manner, will be governed from two realms during this time — heavenly and earthly; and blessings will flow forth through Abraham’s Seed from both realms (cf. Genesis 12:3; 22:17-18; Romans 9:4-5; Galatians 3:16, 29).

And the object of Christ’s rule after this fashion will be to bring order out of disorder, to effect a cosmos out of a chaos.

All rule and all authority and power” must be put down; “all enemies” must be put “under His [under Christ’s] feet,” even “death.”  And when “all things shall be subdued unto Him [unto Christ],” the kingdom will be “delivered up” to “God, even the Father” in order that “God may be all in all [‘God may be all things in all of these things’]” (1 Corinthians 15:24-28, KJV).

This is what the whole of Scripture, beginning in the opening verses of Genesis, anticipates; and to bring the matter to pass, the Son, in conjunction with His co-heirs in the heavens and the nation of Israel on the earth, will rule the earth for the duration of that seventh day — for 1,000 years — foreshadowed by the seventh day seen at the very beginning, in Genesis 2:1-3.

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Word Document:  The Future Kingdom by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

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There are several instances in the New Testament where all three persons of the Godhead come together in one passage of Scripture, e.g., the baptism of Jesus Christ, the issuance of the Great Commission, a benediction by the Apostle Paul and a proclamation by the Apostle Peter.

HOLY (Father), HOLY (Son), HOLY (Spirit) is our ONE GOD!

The Trinity
By Charles Strong of Bible One

Note:  Acknowledgment and appreciation is extended to Chuck Missler (of K-House) and his studies pertaining to this subject, which are used in part within this document.

Preface 

The term trinity is not found in the Bible, but it is used to designate a definite Bible doctrine, not unlike the terms rapture, omnipresent, omniscient, substitutionary, eschatology, incarnation and others.   The doctrine of the Trinity refers to the divine essence (nature) of God who reveals Himself in three distinct Persons.  These three Persons are the (1) Father, (2) Son and (3) Holy Spirit.  These three are separate and yet are one, i.e., one God who manifests Himself in three distinct personalities.  It does not necessarily follow that the three Persons of the Godhead are different in function; since it will be shown later in this study that all three share not only the same attributes but the same functions (works).  Yet, they are three distinct and unique personalities.

The Trinity is not subject to rationalistic apologetics, i.e., it cannot be understood by the rational processes of the human mind.  Bible students and scholars attempt to express the concept using various models, e.g., white light made up of three primary colors or water which can exist as ice, liquid or steam, but such models eventually fail to adequately represent God as three distinct Persons, yet One.  The Trinity or Godhead cannot be known by reason alone but may only be understood by revelation and accepted by faith.

But to the truly scientific and objective mind there are many facets of the physical world that defy rationalization.  Considering such concepts as “evolution” or “dimensionality,” it takes more “faith” to accept the “world view” than the “Biblical view.” 

The Bible (God’s revelation) is a composition of 66 books written by 40 different inspired human authors from vastly different backgrounds over several thousand years, yet with one integrated and consistent message.  One aspect of this message is that plurality coexists with unity in the Godhead.  This is where many of today’s sects and cults go astray, not to mention major religions such as Islam.  And since the term religion has surfaced, it is well to understand that Christianity is not a religion.  It is a union or relationship with a Person, Jesus Christ.  In fact, the primary focal point of all Scripture is the person and work of Jesus Christ, the promised Messiah.

Old Testament 

The Bible reveals that there is only one God.  This truth is made clear in the first commandment (Exodus 20:1-2).  It is clearly expressed in Deuteronomy 6:4:

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is One! 

And in Isaiah 45:5-6:

I am the LORD, and there is no other; there is no God besides Me. I will gird you, though you have not known Me, that they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is none besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other.

There are two Hebrew words that are translated “one” in the Old Testament.  The word, which corresponds to “unique,” (a non-plurality quality) is yahidh.  The other word is ehadh, which does not preclude distinguishable entities or plurality. 

The Hebrew word translated one in the above reference out of the book of Deuteronomy is ehadh, which does not exclude having plurality within it.  It is the same word used in Genesis 2:24, wherein God declares that man and woman by coming together become “one flesh.”  So it is seen by the use of ehadh to refer to Himself in the above passage in Deuteronomy that God reveals His plural nature. 

There are three names used in the Old Testament that are translated God.  They are (1) Elohim—used 2700 times in the Bible, (2) YHWH and (3) Adonai.  Although it is obvious that these three names apply to God the Father, it is also important to note that they all apply in various references to the Son (Isaiah 6:1-3; 9:6; 45:21; Psalm 68:18) and the Holy Spirit (Exodus 31:3; Judges 15:14; Isaiah 11:2).  Therefore it is unwise for the Bible student to conclude that any one of these names will always apply uniquely to only one Person of the Godhead.

The name Elohim, because of its grammatical ending of “im” (similar to the plural terms of cherubim and seraphim), indicates plurality.  Yet it is always used with a “singular verb,” an apparent grammatical error since the noun doesn’t agree with the verb.  This construction is introduced in Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God [plural noun Elohim] created [singular verb bara] the heavens and the earth.”  This form of construction was not used by the Holy Spirit in the transcription of God’s Word by mistake.  In was intended to reveal the plural nature of God.

This usage is correctly carried over into the English translations of the Bible.

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness . . . .” (Genesis 1:26)

Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us  . . . .” (Genesis 3:22)

Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech. (Genesis 11:7)

Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?”  . . . (Isaiah 6:8)

Two other passages in the Old Testament indicate the plurality of God by the use of a plural noun in reference to Him, even though these nouns are not shown as plural in the English versions of the Bible.  They follow:

Remember now your Creator(s) in the days of your youth, before the difficult days come, and the years draw near when you say, “I have no pleasure in them.”  (Ecclesiastes 12:1)

For your Maker(s) is your husband, The LORD of hosts is His name; and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel; He is called the God of the whole earth. (Isaiah 54:5)

Chuck Missler of K-House reveals in his teaching of the Trinity that a two-letter Hebrew word, consisting of the first (aleph) and last (tau) letters of the Hebrew alphabet is used in various places within the Old Testament, yet without being translated into the English versions of the Bible.  He indicates that some Hebrew scholars think that this combination is used to represent a preposition or as a connector to modify a word.  He points out to his audience two specific examples where this isn’t the case, Genesis 1:1 and Zechariah 12:10.   He suggests that one may conclude that the meaning of this usage is the equivalent to the designation “the first and the last,” a name applicable to Jesus Christ in the New Testament (Revelation 2:8).  If he is correct, and this author believes him to be so, then the following two passages take on excitingly new meanings.

In the beginning God (Aleph and Tau) created the heavens and the earth.    =     In the beginning, the First and the Last [Jesus Christ], created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)

. . . then they will look on Me (Aleph and Tau) whom they pierced     =     then they will look on Me, the First and the Last [Jesus Christ], whom they pierced. (Zechariah 12:10)

Not only is this is a very strong indication of Jesus Christ within the Old Testament, but it further confirms the concept that “plurality coexists with unity” in reference to God.

 New Testament 

There are several instances in the New Testament where all three persons of the Godhead come together in one passage of Scripture, e.g., the baptism of Jesus Christ, the issuance of the Great Commission, a benediction by the Apostle Paul and a proclamation by the Apostle Peter.   They follow.

When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.  And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”  (Matthew 3:16-17)

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit . . . . (Matthew 28:19)

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.  (2 Corinthians 13:14)

Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied.  (1 Peter 1:2)

If this was all the New Testament had to say on the subject, it would be enough; yet, the New Testament also reveals that all three Persons of the Godhead are designated as God.  

The Father is God, which is uncontested.

The Son is God.

Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel, which is translated, “God with us.” (Matthew 1:23)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. . . .  And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1, 14)

Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God. (John 5:18)

Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.” [And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”] (John 8:58 [Exodus 3:14])

I and My Father are one. (John 10:30)

. . . . Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God. (Romans 9:5)

Who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God. (Philippians 2:6)

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn [a term of position signifying priority and sovereignty] over all creation. (Colossians 1:15)

For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. (Colossians 2:9)

Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:13)

Who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His Person . . . . (Hebrews 1:3)

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. (1 John 5:20)

The Holy Spirit is God.

But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself? While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.” (Acts 5:3-4)
No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him . . . . [And when He (Holy Spirit) has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment . . . .]  (John 6:44 [John 16:8])
Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. (2 Corinthians 3:17)

The plurality of the one God as evidenced in Holy Writ (Bible) is incontrovertible.  The fact that the Bible clearly reveals that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are each and together the one and the same God, even as they are each distinct Personalities, is indisputable.  Admittedly, the mechanics of how this plurality exists in unity is quite incomprehensible to the human mind.  This doctrine is most certainly of “faith,” not “reason.”

God’s Word further demonstrates the fact that the Godhead is composed of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  The Trinity is shown by both the attributes of God and His works.  The following passages of Scripture will show that many of the attributes and works attributable to God are also attributable to both the Son and the Holy Spirit.  They will only be listed for the student of this subject to look up and confirm.

The Attributes of God

Eternal Existence
 
Father         Psalm 90:2
Son             Micah 5:2; John 1:2; Revelation 1:8, 17 (Isaiah 41:4)
Holy Spirit   Hebrews 9:14
 
Holiness
 
Father     Revelation 15:4
Son         Acts 3:14
Holy Spirit Inherent in His name, “Holy Spirit”

(Note:  A strong case may be made in the original languages that the triple use of the word “holy” in Isaiah 6:3 and Revelation 4:8 refers to all three persons of the Godhead.)

Omnipotent (All powerful)
 
Father          1 Peter 1:5
Son              (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Holy Spirit    Romans 15:19
 
Omniscience (All knowing)
 
Father        Jeremiah 17:10
Son            Revelation 2:23
Holy Spirit  1 Corinthians 2:11
 
Omnipresence (All present)
 
Father        Jeremiah 23:24
Son            Matthew 18:20
Holy Spirit   Psalm 139:7
 
Truth
 
Father         John 7:28
Son             John 14:6; Revelation 3:7
Holy Spirit   1 John 5:6
 
Benevolence
 
Father         Romans 2:4
Son             Ephesians 5:25
Holy Spirit   Nehemiah 9:20
 
The Works of God
 
The Creation of the Universe
 
Father          Psalm 102:25
Son             John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16
Holy Spirit   Genesis 1:2; Job 26:13

(Note:  “Elohim” is plural for all three in Genesis 1:1.)

The Creation of Man
 
Father        Genesis 2:7
Son            Colossians 1:16
Holy Spirit   Job 33:4

(Note:  Plural nouns for God in Ecclesiastes 12:1 and Isaiah 54:5.)

The Incarnation
 
Father         Hebrews 10:5
Son             Philippians 2:7
Holy Spirit   Luke 1:35
 
The Death of Christ
 
Father         Psalm 22:15; John 3:16; Romans 8:32
Son             John 10:18; Galatians 2:20
Holy Spirit   Hebrews 9:14
 
The Atonement
 
Father         Isaiah 53:6, 10
Son             Ephesians 5:2
Holy Spirit   Hebrews 9:14
 
The Resurrection of Christ
 
Father         Acts 2:24; Romans 6:4
Son             John 2:19; 10:17-18
Holy Spirit   Romans 8:11; 1 Peter 3:18
 
The Resurrection of Man
 
Father         John 5:21
Son             John 5:21
Holy Spirit   Romans 8:11
 
The Inspiration of Scripture
 
Father         2 Timothy 3:16
Son             (1 Peter 1:10-11)
Holy Spirit   2 Peter 1:21
 
The Indwelling of Believers
 
Father         Ephesians 4:6
Son             John 17:26; Colossians 1:27
Holy Spirit   1 Corinthians 6:19
 
The Sanctification of Believers
 
Father         Jude 1:1
Son             Hebrews 2:11
Holy Spirit   1 Corinthians 6:11
 
The Eternal Security of the Believer
 
Father         John 10:29
Son             John 10:28; Romans 8:34
Holy Spirit   Ephesians 4:30

One may appreciate, at least to a small degree, the vast abyss between the mind of God and the mind of man by considering how difficult it would be to explain to a tribe in the deep interior of Africa who has had no exposure to the outside (industrial) world the workings of television or a Boeing 747.  The chasm between God and man in the realm of knowledge and understanding is far greater.  It is as extensive as the chasm between the infinite and the finite.  Because of this immense and immeasurable gulf between God and man the Trinity can only be a fact of divine revelation, and not of human reason.

The bottom line is that God’s Word clearly teaches that God is God, Jesus Christ is God and the Holy Spirit is God.  God is one in essence (nature), yet three distinct Persons, in revelation and in the performance of His will.  God the Father orchestrated His plan, Jesus Christ enabled His plan and the Holy Spirit executed His plan.  This of course is over simplification, since any of the three Persons of the Godhead also performed all three functions.  In any case the doctrine of the Trinity is fundamental to Christianity.  A diligent study of the Bible shows it to be accurate, factual, irrefutable, incontrovertible, incontestable, undeniable, indubitable and unassailable….and any other similar adjective of like kind the reader of this study may wish to apply.

HOLY (Father), HOLY (Son), HOLY (Spirit) is our ONE GOD!

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Bible One - Charles Strong's The Trinity

Word Document:  The Trinity by Charles Strong.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

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It is rare to find any minister or organization today that will faithfully and concertedly bring a young (immature) Christian to a state of spiritual maturity through the judicious presentation (feeding, teaching) of the “meat” [solid food] of God’s Word.

Christian Directional Mind-Set
By Charles Strong of Bible One

But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62)

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13-14)

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

The directional mind-set that every Christian should embrace, employ and support is clearly articulated by Jesus Christ in Luke 9 and the apostle Paul in Philippians 3, as noted above.  One’s mind-set is that which reflects attitude, disposition, intention and inclination – the path to which one is committed to travel throughout life.

It has been this writer’s experience that progress and improvement in one’s life can only be when one looks forward in life, not forgetting the past or any previously valid lessons, but certainly not allowing memories to encumber one’s constructive growth.  This is why this writer has always and firmly believed, and has said many times to others, that all that really matters, all that really can be altered for the good, are the present and that which follows.  It simply profits no one to “hang-on” to the past.

In the spiritual realm this is particularly true, especially as it relates to the basis for one’s thoughts then actions.  Prior to believing in Jesus Christ, a decisive action of the will creating the “birth [life] from above” in one’s spirit, which is instantly secured by the Holy Spirit’s permanent “indwelling” (John 14:17; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 John 2:27), “sealing” – the believer’s “guarantee for redemption” (Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 2 Corinthians 1:22), and “immersion (baptism) into the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Galatians 3:27-28),” an individual could only function in the “flesh” (i.e., a condition influenced by the “god [Satan] of this age” [2 Corinthians 4:4]).

Subsequent to one’s “birth from above” a person has a choice, to live in the past, allowing the “flesh” to have dominion over one’s life, or to forge ahead, allowing the Spirit of God to influence and empower (Ephesians 5:18) one’s thoughts and actions, a process, a spiritual goal that may only be achieved as one absorbs and allows the “Word of Christ” to “dwell” (take root and live) within one’s mind and heart (compare Ephesians 5:18-20 with its companion passage Colossians 3:16).

To follow this path of spiritual maturity would be in stark contrast to the spiritual condition of the believers with whom the apostle Paul came in contact when he visited the “church (assembly, local body of believers) of God . . . at Corinth” (1 Corinthians 1:1-2), as seen in Paul’s words:

And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal [fleshly], as to babes [immature persons] in Christ.  I fed you with milk [basics of the Word] and not with solid food [the meat of the Word]; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; for you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men? (1 Corinthians 3:1-3; cf. 1 Corinthians 14:20; Ephesians 4:14)

Sadly, this is also the condition of most of the local churches within Christendom today.  This deteriorating condition was forecast by Christ as He sat in a boat speaking to “great multitudes” who had gathered “by the sea” along with His disciples, as seen in Matthew 13.  And although this writer is most certainly no model of one who has achieved complete spiritual maturity, for the path toward this end for him has been long and continues on, even he understands the apparent evidence of mediocracy of spirituality within Christendom as it is seen on every hand throughout Christendom today.  Instead of concerted efforts to feed the children of God with the Word of God, the vast numbers of local church ministers, so-called “Christian” television programs, and other “Christian” efforts through the broad tentacles of social media mostly center on messages around shallow platitudes, emotional appeal, and financial gain.

As to the proper definitive form of spiritual care by ministers and ministries for Christians, Scripture reveals the following:

So when they had eaten breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You." He said to him, “Feed My lambs.” He said to him again a second time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.” He said to him, “Tend [Gk. poimaino – shepherd – to feed and care for) My sheep.” He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?” And he said to Him, “Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.” Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep.” (John 21:15-17)

Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd [feed and care for] the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. (Acts 20:28)

And He [Christ] Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastor-teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect [mature] man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting. (Ephesians 4:11-14)

Shepherd [feed and care for] the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.  (1 Peter 5:2-4)

To put it succinctly, it is rare to find any minister or organization today that will faithfully and concertedly bring a young (immature) Christian to a state of spiritual maturity through the judicious presentation (feeding, teaching) of the “meat” [solid food] of God’s Word.  This being the case, most Christians have little foundation and encouragement to adopt the correct directional mind-set as has been stated by Jesus Christ and the apostle Paul in the passages of Scripture seen in the beginning of this article.  Rather, most only take the “easy road” of carnality (fleshly desire), instead of the “noble road” of “forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, [and pressing] toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Sadly, most find themselves to be as those to whom the apostle Paul addressed in 1 Corinthians 3:1-3 (previously quoted), as well as to those whom the writer of the book of Hebrews addressed:

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.  For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.  But solid food 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 5:12-14)

For the reader to properly understand the framework elaborated in Scripture designed to advance a believer in Christ from a spiritual state of immaturity to one of maturity, he needs to first understand the composition of man, i.e., his physical and spiritual make-up designed by God at the time of man’s creation when earth was renovated from its previously fallen state as seen in the early chapters of the book of Genesis.

(The opening two chapters in the book of Genesis, contrary to what is taught throughout most of Christendom, do not record the creation of the earth and the surrounding Universe.  They actually record the restoration of a prior ruined creation.  Should the reader wish to meticulously explore this truth, it is suggested that he read The Revelation of Jesus Christ (2) in this site.)

Man was created in the “image” and “likeness” of God (Genesis 1:26-27).  God reveals Himself throughout Scripture as a tripartite Being, One who reveals and expresses Himself in and through three distinct Personalities – the Father, the Son (Jesus the Christ), and the Holy Spirit.  God is One in essence (nature), yet three distinct Persons, in revelation and in the performance of His will.

(Should the reader wish to read a more detailed account of the concept of the Trinity as it is supported in Scripture, it is suggested that he read The Trinity in this site.)

Man, created in the “image” and “likeness” of God, is also a triune person, composed of a “spirit,” a “soul,” and a “body.”

Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:23)

For the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow [body], and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)

For lack of a better explanation, the “spirit” is that part of man that enables a spiritual link with God, the “body” is that part of man that is physically linked with material surroundings, and the “soul” is that part of man encompassing his reasoning and communicative abilities that enables man to apprehend (comprehend) spiritual truths, which will allow him to mature spiritually and will culminate in his reign with Christ in the coming Messianic Era.

(The reader should understand that the writer’s supposition of the “soul” is most likely deficient, but it is based on the fact that Scripture definitely and specifically speaks to Christians about “soul salvation” [James 1:21; Hebrews 10:39; 1 Peter 1:9], which, although is not linked with a person’s eternal salvation, it is determined at the Judgment Seat of Christ [1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10-11] and when successfully achieved is realized by the whole person being able to reign with Christ during the Messianic Era [2 Timothy 2:12; Revelation 20:4].)

In addition to man being tripartite in composition, he was also given self-will, the ability to self-determine and choose between different courses of action, which was also typical of the “image” and “likeness” of God.  This being the case, the “image” and “likeness” of God in man encompassed both a tripartite and self-determining reality.

After God created man, both male (Genesis 1:26-27) and female (Genesis 2:21-23), a choice was made to violate God’s will, His specific instructions, which resulted in:

1) Man’s death – the instantaneous death of his “spirit” (his connection with God), which then left his “soul” in “total darkness” (i.e., without any spiritual influence), along with the progressive (through time) death of his body Genesis 2:17).

2) The deterioration of the earth (Genesis 3:1-19).

The Beginning

The beginning of the Christian journey for any person is anchored solely in Jesus Christ and His work alone, which may be accessed solely by one’s willful act of faith in Christ and what Christ alone has done, i.e., accomplished on the cross of Calvary on behalf of the entire human race.  Only through Christ’s propitiatory sacrifice is it possible for persons to be “alive who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1; Colossians 2:13).

But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood [i.e., His death], through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. (Romans 3:21-26)

Therefore, in all things He [Jesus Christ] had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. (Hebrews 2:17)
And He [Jesus Christ] Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. (1 John 2:2)

In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:10)

The word propitiation, as seen in Romans 3:25 above, speaks of Christ’s expiatory (atoning) death (i.e., His spiritual separation from God the Father during a three hour period on the cross of Calvary [Matthew 27:45-46; Mark 15:33-34] and which was “finished” [lit. “totally completed”] on the cross [John 19:30]) for the redemption of mankind, a death which totally satisfied God and His judgment toward sin.  It is by and through the death (a circumstance represented by the “shedding of blood” [Leviticus 17:11; Hebrews 9:22; Ephesians 1:7; Matthew 26:28; Acts 20:28]) of Christ that God demonstrates the mercy of His justifying grace to the sinner who believes – “faith” being the sole condition on man’s part (Acts 16:30-31; Ephesians 2:8-9).

Upon a person’s willful act of faith in Christ, the following is true, expressed by Arlen L. Chitwood in the appendix (“Salvation – Spirit, Soul”) in the Appendix of his book, Salvation by Grace through Faith BOOK:

It is at this point in man’s salvation that the spirit is separated from the soul.  The “spirit” in unsaved man is dead.  It is a part of the totally depraved man, with his “body of…death,” in which there dwells “no good thing” (Romans 7:18, 24).  With the movement of the Spirit, using the God-breathed Word, man’s spirit is made alive and, at the same time, separated from his soul.

The “soul” remains within the sphere of darkness, which is why “the natural [Greek: psuchikos, ‘soulical’] man” cannot understand “the things of the Spirit of God” (1 Corinthians 2:14).  That which remains in the sphere of darkness can have no apprehension or comprehension of that which has shined out of darkness.  There is a God-established division between the two that cannot be crossed over (cf. Luke 16:26).

(Note that the preceding forms a foundational part of the reason why Christ becoming one’s Lord [cf. Luke 6:46] cannot be an integral part of salvation by grace.)

The Journey

Once a person has been “born from above” by the Spirit of God, resulting from an act of faith in Jesus Christ, he is then faced with the responsibility to take an “upward” spiritual journey.  The journey, if taken, will transport him from an “immature” person (“babe”) to a “mature” person in Christ.  But just as he had the God-given ability to either choose or reject Christ from the very beginning, as a Christian he also has the God-given ability to either spiritually forge ahead or remain in a carnal (fleshly) spiritual state.  If he selects to go ahead, utilizing the same principle of faith, receiving assistance (power) from the Spirit of God, he will consistently absorb the ever-deepening truths of God’s Word, which will insure mature spiritual growth resulting in the salvation of his soul and his participation with Jesus Christ during the coming Messianic kingdom.

The remainder of this section will be taken from Chitwood’s book mentioned above, but dealing with that which is subsequent to a person’s “birth from above” by and through “faith in Christ” – the salvation of the soul.  The book, which compares man’s spiritual birth and subsequent journey to God’s restoration of a prior ruined creation (the earth), may be reviewed in its entirety by activating the following link: Salvation by Grace through Faith by Arlen Chitwood.

The preceding process is the manner that God uses to deliver the spirit from its fallen state, resulting from Adam’s sin.  And because the spirit has been delivered, there can once again be communion with God.  Man can now comprehend spiritual things, and there can now be a progressive, continued work by the Spirit of God within man so that he can ultimately be delivered to the place that God has decreed that he occupy at the end of six days, at the end of six thousand years.

Within the framework of the type in Genesis 1, this is the very first thing that is foreshadowed.  This had to be set forth first, for man has to first be made alive — he has to first pass “from death to life” — before anything else in the restorative process can occur.

Thus, this is foreshadowed at the very beginning of the six days that God, in accordance with the established pattern, would use to bring about man’s complete restoration — spirit, soul, and body (cf. 1 Thessalonians 5:23).

To briefly illustrate how God’s complete restoration of man is patterned after God’s complete restoration of the material creation in Genesis 1, note three things:

1) Where the complete restorative process began (on day one, as previously mentioned).

2) That which occurred on each succeeding day (two through six).

3) Where the whole of the restorative process was leading (the seventh day, the Sabbath, a day of rest following six days of work [Genesis 2:1-3]).

Within the type-antitype framework — pertaining to man’s salvation in the antitype — that which occurred in the type on day one (Genesis 1:2-5 [2b]) pertains to the salvation of man’s spirit, and that which occurred in the type on days two through six (Genesis 1:6-25) pertains to the salvation of man’s soul, with the entirety of that which is revealed leading to the seventh day (Genesis 2:1-3).

The salvation of the spirit is an instantaneous event where one passes “from death to life,” but not so with the salvation of the soul.  It is a progressive event.  It is an event that begins at the point one is made alive spiritually, and it will not be completed and realized until the end of that which is foreshadowed by the six days of restorative work — 6,000 years of restorative work.

(The issues of the judgment seat of Christ at the end of the present dispensation – which will occur at the end of the six days, at the end of the 6,000 years – will have to do with issues surrounding the salvation [or loss] of the soul / life.  It will be at the judgment seat – not before – that man will realize [or fail to realize] the salvation of his soul / life.

Note that issues of the judgment seat can have nothing whatsoever to do with man’s presently possessed eternal salvation, which has to do with his spirit.  It is only on the basis of man’s presently possessed eternal salvation that he can be dealt with in relation to fruit bearing [having to do with his soul / life], both during present time and at the judgment seat.  And the findings and determinations of the judgment seat, in this respect, will have to do with the salvation or loss of his soul / life, which, in turn, will determine his place and position in the coming kingdom of Christ.)

Since the salvation of the spirit cannot occur apart from an exact duplication in the antitype of that which occurred in the type during day one of the restoration in Genesis 1:2-5 [2b], it should be evident that the salvation of the soul and its relationship to that which occurred on days two through six must be looked upon the same way.  The latter must follow the pattern to the same degree as the former.  There can be no difference in this respect.

And since this is the case, note what occurred on days two through six in the restoration of the ruined material creation in Genesis.  Then, to see the overall picture of that which must be done to bring about the salvation of redeemed man’s soul, these same events can be viewed in relation to God’s present continuing restoration of man, a subsequent ruined creation.

Events on days two and three (as events on the first day) have to do with divisions.  On the second day God established a division between the waters (Genesis 1:6-8), and on the third day He established a division between the dry land (with its vegetation) and the waters (Genesis 1:9-13).

Then events on days four through six belong together as another unit, depicting things beyond the divisions previously established.  On the fourth day God placed lights in the heavens to give light upon the earth (Genesis 1:14-19), on the fifth day He created birds that could soar above the earth and marine life that could move throughout the depths of the sea (Genesis 1:20-23), and on the sixth day He created the land animals, which included great creatures capable of roaming the earth (Genesis 1:24-25).

And, as previously noted, the entirety of God’s restorative work relative to the material creation in Genesis foreshadows the whole of God’s restorative work relative to man today.  After man has “passed from death to life,” wherein the spirit is separated from the soul – wrought entirely through divine intervention – redeemed man finds himself in a position and condition where a continued divine work not only can occur but must occur if he is to realize the salvation of his soul.  And only through this continued divine work can the whole of God’s restorative work, as it pertains to man, be realized.

(Man, as the material creation, must be completely passive in relation to the salvation of the spirit [he is dead, rendering him incapable of acting]; and man, as the material creation [“And the earth brought forth . . . .”] must be active in relation to the salvation of the soul [he now has spiritual life, allowing him to act in the spiritual realm].  But, as in the restoration of the material creation, the entire salvation process [spirit and soul, and ultimately the body] is a divine work.  “Salvation is of the Lord” [Jonah 2:9].

For more information on the preceding, refer to the author’s book, in this site, The Time of the End BOOK,  Appendix 3 - Faith and Works.)

Events occurring during the first three days in Genesis 1 would point to elementary things or the basics in one’s spiritual life and growth.  Events occurring during day one (Genesis 1:2-5 [2b]) would point to a division between the soul and the spirit, having to do with the impartation of life.

Then events occurring during days two and three (Genesis 1:6-13) would point to divisions and distinctions as one begins to progressively grow within the framework of the new life brought into existence on the first day.  One would learn to distinguish between the soulical and spiritual, spiritual and carnal (fleshly), Jew, Gentile, and Christian, the dispensations, etc.

Only when one learns the divisions and distinctions depicted by that which was brought to pass on days two and three is he in a position to move on into the things depicted by that which was brought to pass on days four through six (Genesis 1:14-25).  On these three days, light was restored to the sun and moon (day four, Genesis 1:14-19); sea life and the birds of the air were created (day five, Genesis 1:20-23); and then God created all the living creatures that roam the earth, followed by His creation of man (day six, Genesis 1:24-27).

That which is depicted by the work of the Triune Godhead during these three days points to things beyond elementary truths in the antitype.  After one has passed “from death to life” and has been instructed in the elementary truths (days one through three – after he has grown to a degree in his Christian life – he can then begin to view with understanding deeper spiritual truths of the Word.  He can then begin to view with understanding those things in the Word depicted by events on days four through six (Genesis 1:14-25).

An individual in this position can begin to sink deep shafts down into the Word and mine its treasures.  He can look into the Word and understand that which is depicted by the lights in the heavens.  He can, in the true sense of the Word, “mount up with wings as eagles . . . run, and not be weary . . . walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31), as he scales the heights; or he can scale the depths of the Word, as the sea creatures plunge to the depths of the sea; or he can roam through the Word, as the land creatures roam the earth.

Christian maturity and spiritual victory – bringing to pass the salvation of the soul – go hand-in-hand.  And the entire process of God’s restoration work throughout the six days is with a view to that which lies beyond, on the seventh day.  It is with a view to the Sabbath rest awaiting the people of God.

The Prize, the Hope

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13-14)

Make no mistake, there is a “prize” reserved for Christians who select to adopt and continue in the proper directional mind-set, to look not to the past but to that which is “ahead” as they “press toward the goal” [from “immaturity” to “maturity”] set before them.  The human author of the book of Hebrews likened the pursuit for this “goal” to a “race.”

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2)

The apostle Paul, realizing that his time on earth was drawing to a close, who had remained faithful in his press “toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus,” who had “finished the race [and] kept the faith” resulting in the salvation of his soul, defined (but not totally) the prize he had been pursuing.

For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing. (2 Timothy 4:6-8)

Paul was prepared to face Christ at His judgment seat and to receive the verdict of the quality of his Christian life on earth, which could be positive, resulting in definite “reward,” or negative, resulting in definite “loss.”

For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; cf. 2 Corinthians 5:9-11, Romans 14:10-12; Colossians 3:25)

And as a Christian, you may be assured that you too will face “the righteous Judge [Christ] . . . on that Day [of Judgment], which although will not affect in any way your eternal salvation (of the spirit), will most surely reveal what you will either gain (salvation of your soul) or lose due to your Christian life upon this earth.

The prize to which you are challenged to earn (yes, I said “earn”) is also defined as “the hope” to which all Christians should and must aspire, the salvation of their souls.  The remainder of this study will be a brief dissertation by Arlen L. Chitwood regarding “the hope” – taken from the second appendix to his book, Salvation of the Soul, a book strongly recommended to the reader, which may be obtained by activating, in this site, the following link: Salvation of the Soul BOOKThe Hope (SOS).

According to 1 Peter 3:15, Christians are to “always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.”  This is called, in introductory verses to the book, “a living hope”; and it is made possible through “the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3).  Christ lives, and those “in Christ” are being called to live, beyond resurrection, in glory with Him.

Hope in 1 Peter is associated with “an inheritance” (1 Peter 1:4), a future “salvation” (1 Peter 1:5 [“the salvation of your souls”; 1 Peter 1:9]), and “honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:7; cf. 1 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 “a reason of the hope” that 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 11 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 12, 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 (1 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,” which is 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 by and through patient endurance in the race of the faith.  Both “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 Hebrews 10:23, Christians are told, “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 “to stir up [one another to] 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 the present age,” 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 our great God and Savior Jesus Christ” [Titus 2:13], a glory that 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:  “Savior Jesus Christ” is a further explanation and description of “our great God.”

With this in mind, the verse could be better translated as follows:

Awaiting that blessed hope, which is the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior 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 twofold 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 “no longer walked 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 “marveled,” 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 to 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. 2 Corinthians 3:12; 7:4; see also Philippians 1:20; 1 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; 2 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.

Firm unto the End

When a Christian is told to be “ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for 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 a 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; 2 Timothy 2:10-13).

Christians have been saved for a revealed purpose, which has to do with future regality, as co-heirs with Christ in the kingdom.

Christians are to set their course straight and hold it there, not deviating; and they are to hold their course, after this fashion, “firm to the end” (Hebrews 3:6), allowing them to one day realize that which Scripture refers to as “so great a salvation,” the salvation of their soul.

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Bible One – Charles Strong’s Christian Directional Mind-Set

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Christians, who will most assuredly and perpetually be sought out and attacked by Satan and his minions during this (temporal) lifetime, will only be able to successfully survive spiritually, i.e., achieve the salvation of their souls, if they take the courageous position of standing firm in the faith, a station of spiritual maturity that may only be obtained as one studies and absorbs the meat (i.e., “Word of the Kingdom”) of God’s Word.

Watch & Stand Fast in the Faith
By Charles Strong of Bible One

One evening recently, as this writer was considering the myriad reasons underlying his desire to experience the return of Christ, reasons stemming from the pains and limitations of “old age” to the countless and demonstrable evil manifestations throughout the world as seen daily through the proliferation of mass media, the following thoughts crossed his mind:  Christ never promised an easy road in living for Him!  Quite the contrary!  All He promised was difficulty, hard times and suffering.

(This truth may be confirmed by reviewing the following passages of Scripture:  Matthew 5:11-12; 16:24; 23:34; Luke 6:22; Acts 5:41; 14:22; Romans 5:3; 8:17; 2 Corinthians 12:10; Philippians 1:29; 2 Timothy 2:12; 3:12; James 1:2-3, 12; 1 Peter 3:14; 4:14.)

And with this in mind, this writer couldn’t help but come to the conclusion that Christ expects His children to stand firm against the onslaught by Satan and his minions, a position reflecting deep gratitude for all that Christ has done and continues to do for mankind, in addition to exhibiting the only means in which a Christian can achieve the salvation of his soul, i.e., become an “overcomer,” one who will qualify at Christ’s Judgment Seat to participate as part of the “bride of Christ” and rule and reign with Christ during the coming Messianic Era.

In summation, this writer couldn’t help but realize that he was being somewhat childish and spineless in his outlook and life for Christ, a shameful position indeed.  But on the positive side, it was this evaluation that led him to a wide expanse of Scripture passages revealing the correct stance each Christian should adopt and maintain throughout his mortal life, chief of which would be expressed by the apostle Paul.

The apostle Paul when writing to “the church [assembly] of God which is at Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all who in every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:2) ended his letter in a positive manner in which he included the following emphatic instruction:

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave [mature], be strong. (1 Corinthians 16:13)

In this one verse is God’s expectation for every Christian during his lifetime, the elements of which follow and are best explained by Scripture:

1Watch (perceptive, discerning, sensitive [to spiritual matters])

Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. (Matthew 24:42)

Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming. (Matthew 25:13)

Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. (1Thessalonians 5:6)

Preach the Word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. . . . But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. (2 Timothy 4:2, 5)

2Stand fast (firmly grounded and with endurance [in spiritual matters])

Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain. (1 Corinthians 15:1-2)

(An examination of this passage within its context reveals that Paul is speaking specifically of the “salvation of the soul” – a salvation applicable only to Christians [those in permanent possession of eternal life based solely on the work of Christ and obtained solely by faith in Christ] and which has consequence only during the coming Messianic Era [the thousand year reign of Christ over the earth, which will be instigated at His soon return])

Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel. (Philippians 1:27)

Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved. (Philippians 4:1)

For now we live, if you stand fast in the Lord. (1 Thessalonians 3:8)

3In the faith

There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. (Ephesians 4:4-6)

I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find [the] faith on the earth? (Luke 18:8)

(This is simply a description of the same conditions that Christ had called attention to several decades earlier during His earthly ministry:  “. . . when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith [‘the faith’] on the earth?” (Luke 18:8b).  And the manner in which this question is worded in the Greek text designates a negative response.  The Son of Man will not find “the faith” (an expression peculiarly related to the Word of the Kingdom) being taught throughout the churches of the land at the time of His return.

The Word of the Kingdom, taught universally throughout the first century Church at the eginning of the dispensation, will be completely absent in teachings throughout the Church at the end of the dispensation.  Instead, in some quarters (possibly “many”), that more closely aligned with the “doctrines of demons” will be taught (1 Timothy 4:1-3; refMysteries of the Kingdom BOOKCh. 7, in this site. , "Doctrines of Demons," which follows in the next commentary).  The working of the leaven throughout the dispensation (fourth parable) will have gradually wrought this change, bringing this change to a terminal point, leaving Christendom completely leavened in relation to the Word of the Kingdom at the end of the dispensation. [Taken from Mysteries of the Kingdom BOOKCh. 10, in this site. ].)

So then [the] faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. (Romans 10:17)

Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is [resting] in you?unless indeed you are disqualified [lit. rejected]. (2 Corinthians 13:5)

For by grace you have been saved through [the] faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God. (Ephesians 2:8)

And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastor-teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect [mature] man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head – Christ – from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. (Ephesians 4:11-16)

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified. (Galatians 2:16; cf. Galatians 3:11, 24)

4Be brave – Gk. literally mature

5Be strong – Gk. literally be strengthened

Standing – a Matter of Faith

2 Corinthians 1:24
Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand.

Romans 11:20
Well said. Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear.

1 Corinthians 15:1
Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received [by faith] and in which you stand [by faith].

2 Corinthians 5:7
For we walk by faith, not by sight. (cf. Colossians 2:6)

Colossians 2:6
As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord [by faith], so [in the same manner] walk in Him. (cf. 2 Corinthians 5:7; Ephesians 3:17)

Standing Armor

Ephesians 6:13-18
Therefore take up the whole armor of God that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.

2 Corinthians 10:4
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.

Regarding the weaponry (i.e., “the whole armor of God”) mentioned by Paul in Ephesians 6 (above), the following is taken from The Spiritual Warfare BOOK, Ch. 3:

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Proper Preparation

God has placed pastor-teachers in the Church to lead Christians from immaturity to maturity in the faith, and the revealed reason is given in Ephesians 4:14:

That we should no longer be children tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting.

In the epistle of Ephesians, instruction provided by pastor-teachers would, of necessity, have to center on:

1) One’s positional standing “in Christin the heavenlies (Ephesians 1:3, 20).

2) The “inheritance” awaiting Christians (Ephesians 1:11, 17-18).

3) The very purpose for one’s salvation (Ephesians 2:6-7).

4) The “fellowship [‘dispensation’] of the mystery” (Ephesians 3:1-11).

5) The necessity for maturity in the faith (Ephesians 4:11-16).

6) The necessity for being filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18-20).

7) The spiritual warfare at hand (Ephesians 3:10; 6:10ff).

Concluding his epistle with the exhortation, “Put on the whole armor of God” (Ephesians 6:11), the writer uses similar wording in the Greek text to that which he had used in Ephesians 4:14. 

This earlier verse (Ephesians 4:14) concerns proper preparation through spiritual maturity in order to avoid being led astray by the “cunning craftiness” of those who “lie in wait to deceive” (KJV).  And the later verse (Ephesians 6:11) concerns one being clothed in “the whole armor of God” in order that he might be able to “stand against the wiles of the devil.”

The thought in both instances has to do with a settled plan, a systematic strategy used by those who have set about to deceive and lead Christians astray relative to matters surrounding their calling, as revealed in Ephesians; and Christians, in both instances, are to be properly prepared for such deception.

Instruction is progressive throughout Ephesians (and elsewhere in Scripture), and the concluding exhortation in Ephesians 6:10ff is really for Christians who have attained an element of spiritual maturity in their lives.  This is very evident from what is stated in the passage.

There can be no such thing as a spiritually immature Christian being “strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might” (Ephesians 6:10); nor can there be any such thing as a spiritually immature Christian being able to properly clothe himself in “the whole armor of God” and “stand against the wiles of the devil” (Ephesians 6:11).  Spiritually immature Christians have little to no understanding of the warfare, much less how to properly clothe themselves.

This can be easily demonstrated from an Old Testament type, which is the central type in the Old Testament dealing with this subject – the Israelites under Moses at Kadesh-Barnea, in a position to go in, take the land, and realize an inheritance therein. 

The march from Egypt to Kadesh-Barnea was by way of the wilderness of Sinai, where detailed instructions from the Lord were given to the people of Israel through Moses.  And when the Israelites subsequently reached Kadesh-Barnea, spies were sent into the land ahead of the nation to gather information concerning the land and the inhabitants therein.  These spies spent forty days and nights in the land, traversing it from one end to the other, and returned not only with information concerning the land and its inhabitants but with actual samples of the fruits of the land itself.

The people of Israel had received the Word of God at Sinai.  They had then heard the report concerning the land and the inhabitants therein, and they had tasted the actual fruits of the land at Kadesh-Barnea before thought was given to entering the land and combating the inhabitants.  That is, the people of Israel had been led from a rudimentary knowledge of their salvation in Egypt (through death and shed blood, where the death of the firstborn occurred by means of a substitute) to a mature knowledge concerning God’s plans and purposes relating to the nation at Kadesh-Barnea (where a revealed inheritance lay before the people). And the entire matter had to do with the Israelites going into the land, warring against the inhabitants, being victorious over the inhabitants, and realizing God’s purpose for the nation, within a theocracy.

And that which this overall type foreshadows, seen in the antitype today (cf. 1 Corinthians 10:6, 11; Hebrews 3; 4), is exactly the same.  Growth from immaturity to maturity in the Christian life is likewise for a purpose (Hebrews 5), and that purpose has to do with being able to achieve victory over the enemy and to one day realize an inheritance in a heavenly land within a theocracy (Hebrews 6; 10; 12). 

Christians are to be fully capable of clothing themselves in the whole armor of God that they might be able to “withstand in the evil day.”  The word “withstand” is a translation of the Greek word anthistemi, which is a compound word comprised of anti (“against”) and histemi (“to stand”).  Thus, the thought, beginning in Ephesians 6:10, is to be “strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might [note where one’s strength lies – not in himself, but in the Lord]”; and in conjunction with an exhibition of this type of strength, one is told, “Put on the whole armor of God,” for only by so doing will he be able to firmly stand against the settled plan, the systematic strategy of Satan, holding his ground and giving no place to the enemy.

1)  Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth (Ephesians 6:14a)

Following the events of the Passover in Egypt during the days of Moses, 3,500 years ago (Exodus 12:1ff), the people of Israel were to be led out of Egypt in order to realize an inheritance in another land.  They were to be removed from Egypt and established in the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  And the people of Israel were to be established in this land in the position of God’s firstborn son (the nation that God recognized as possessing the rights of primogeniture).  As God’s firstborn son, Israel would be the ruling nation within a theocracy, and the Gentile nations would then not only be ruled by Israel but these same nations would also be blessed through Israel (Genesis 12:2-3; 22:17-18; Exodus 4:22-23; 19:5-6).

Exactly the same things apply in relation to Christians, except a heavenly land is in view.  Christ has died, His blood has been shed; and the firstborn has died vicariously, through the provided Substitute.  And, exactly as in the type, an inheritance in another land is in view.

That is to say, an individual has been saved for a revealed purpose, and that purpose in the antitype is the same as seen in the type.

Then He brought us out from there [out of Egypt], that He might bring us in [into the land to which they had been called], to give us the land of which He swore to our fathers. (Deuteronomy 6:23)

Christians, from a typical standpoint, have been saved in Egypt (a type of the world) to realize an inheritance in Canaan (a type of the heavenly land to which they have been called).  That is, Christians have been saved in the world in order to one day be established in a heavenly land as God’s firstborn son (that “holy nation” that God recognizes as possessing the rights of primogeniture [Hebrews 12:23; 1 Peter 2:9]); and as God’s firstborn, Christians will rule as co-heirs with Christ, within a theocracy.  The Gentile nations will not only be ruled by Christ and His co-heirs but these same nations will also be blessed through Christ and His co-heirs (Genesis 22:17-18; Ephesians 1:3; Philippians 3:20; Colossians 1:5; Hebrews 3:1; 1 Peter 1:4).

(Spiritual blessings in that day can and will flow not only from Christ and Israel on earth [Christ seated on David’s throne, in the midst of the Jewish people] but through Christ and His co-heirs in the heavens as well [Christ seated on His own throne, with His bride], in complete accordance with Genesis 12:3; 22:17-18.

And this can be true because all those associated with Christ in this manner [both on earth and in the heavens] will be of the seed of Abraham [Galatians 3:29], the seed through whom God has decreed that all spiritual blessings are to flow.)

The Israelites in the type had been led from Egypt through the wilderness to the borders of the land of Canaan at Kadesh-Barnea.  They were in possession of the Word of God received at Sinai, they had heard the report of the spies who had traversed the land of Canaan, and they had tasted the actual fruits of the land that the spies had brought back with them.  The Israelites had moved from a simple knowledge of the rudimentary things surrounding the death of the firstborn in Egypt to an extensive knowledge concerning the plans and purposes of God for the nation (which centered on the land of Canaan and the purpose for Israel’s calling).

In the terminology of Scripture, the Israelites had moved from a state of gnosis (“knowledge”) to a state of epignosis (“mature knowledge [especially as it related to the things surrounding the purpose for their calling]”).  They were now ready to enter the land, combat the “giants” inhabiting this land (Numbers 13:32-33), and possess the land in accordance with their calling and God’s promise.

Their seeming inability to conquer the “giants,” who were far stronger, was to be of no consequence.  They were to recognize that the battle belonged to the Lord (1 Samuel 17:47) and that circumstances were not to be viewed from a naturalistic standpoint but from a divine viewpoint.  They were to know that the enemy could not be overcome within their own strength (Numbers 14:42-45) but, rather, through the strength of the One dwelling in their midst.

Such was the attitude exhibited by Caleb and Joshua (two of the twelve spies) as they sought to present the truth of the matter to a people who had been troubled by the preliminary report given by the spies concerning the land and its inhabitants (Numbers 13:26-30).  And this is what is in view in Ephesians 6:14 when Christians are told to have their waists “girded . . . with truth.”

Truth” in this passage is not a reference to the Word of God.  A person clothing himself to enter the conflict with the inhabitants of the land wherein his inheritance lies occurs, as in the type, at Kadesh-Barnea when he enters the conflict, not back in Egypt.  At this point, the person properly clothing himself could only have previously moved from an immature understanding of the Word to one that would allow him to grasp various things about the spiritual warfare at hand.  That is, such a person would not only be in possession of the Word but he would be in possession of an understanding of this Word, particularly as it relates to things surrounding the battle for the land and Christians ultimately holding regal positions therein.

Taking and using the Word already in one’s possession is seen later, in Ephesians 6:17, not at this point in the instructions, in Ephesians 6:14.

Truth” in this passage is a reference to entering the conflict after the same fashion Caleb and Joshua were exhorting the people to enter the conflict during their day:

"Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.” (Numbers 13:30)

Truth” with which one enters the conflict, in this respect, is sincerity, earnestness as the person goes forth, relying upon the Lord (“. . . be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might” [Ephesians 6:10]).

One has to, first of all, be sincere and earnest about the conflict in which he finds himself engaged.  This battle isn’t something that one can enter after any type of frivolous fashion.  There is a systematic, well-planned effort on the part of Satan to bring about a Christian’s defeat; and a Christian, to be victorious in battle, must exhibit the same type of attitude as manifested by Caleb and Joshua.

(The “giants [Hebrew:  nephilim, ‘fallen ones’]” inhabiting the land during Moses’ day were the offspring of a cohabitation of the sons of God with the daughters of men – the offspring of a cohabitation between fallen angels in Satan’s kingdom and female members of the human race.  Thus, the battle set before the Israelites for possession of the land, as the battle set before Christians for possession of a land today, involved things beyond the natural, requiring God’s supernatural intervention on behalf of His people.)

2)  . . . having put on the breastplate of righteousness (Ephesians 6:14b)

The girdle is the first piece of armor mentioned in Ephesians 6; and a warrior arraying himself for battle was to put the girdle on first, for other pieces of the armor were attached to the girdle.

The breastplate, the next piece of armor mentioned, was normally attached to the girdle in both the front and the rear, making the girdle necessary for the breastplate to be held firmly in place.

The thought is that there must first be a “Caleb and Joshua” type of attitude on the part of the Christian before going beyond this point in properly clothing himself.  One must first have on the girdle of sincerity, earnestness and truthfulness before the breastplate can be properly affixed.

It is a simple thing to see that the breastplate can have nothing to do with the righteousness of God that has been imputed to every believer.  The righteousness of God is a righteousness with which God clothes us at the point of salvation, as He clothed Adam and Eve with animal skins following their fall (requiring death and shed blood). 

The righteousness in view in Ephesians 6:14 is a righteousness that the Christian himself is to put on.  It is a righteousness to be put on by the one already in possession of the imputed righteousness of God.

This is the personal righteousness mentioned in Revelation 19:8, associated with the wedding garment.  This garment is made up of “the righteousness of saints.”  The word “righteousness” is plural in the Greek text and should be translated “righteousnesses,” or “righteous acts.”  These are the justifying acts referred to in James 2:21-25. 

A man is first justified by faith (Romans 5:15-18), being clothed in the righteousness of God (spoken of in a singular sense – one justifying act [performed by Christ]); and the man is then to be justified by works (James 2:24), clothing himself by righteous acts (spoken of in a plural sense – justifying acts [performed by the one already justified by faith, justified through the act of Another]).

Righteous acts performed by Christians simply have to do with exercising faithfulness within the scope of one’s particular calling, fulfilling his particular responsibility as a servant in the Lord’s house.  And, as one exercises faithfulness, waiting upon the Lord, righteous acts will be the natural outworking of faithfulness as the person follows the leadership of the indwelling Spirit.

That is to say, in relation to that which is seen in Ephesians 6:14, after one exhibits the proper attitude toward the battle at hand, he is then to exercise faithfulness as a servant in the house.  Such will result in works, righteous acts, allowing that person to have on (he will have put it on himself) the breastplate of righteousness and allowing that person to one day be clothed (actually, he will one day clothe himself) in the wedding garment.

(For the proper relationship that faith and works occupy in relation to one another, refer to the author’s book,
Salvation of the Soul BOOK in this site, and reference Ch. 5, “Faith Made Mature,” and Appendix 1, “Faith and Works.”)

3And having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace (Ephesians 6:15)

Note the emphasis in Ephesians 6:11, 13-14 relative to standing as one goes forth to battle: “to stand” (Ephesians 6:11), “withstand [lit. ‘stand against’],” “to stand” (Ephesians 6:13), and “Stand” (Ephesians 6:14).  One must have solid footing to stand upon.  Both feet must be firmly planted, “having shod your feet with the preparation [‘readiness’] of the gospel of peace.”

There are two aspects to the gospel in Scripture.  One appears in connection with “peace with God,” and the other appears in connection with “the peace of God.”

Peace with God” comes about through justification by grace through faith, as seen in Ephesians 2:8-9. “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1).  This peace results from one being placed upon the foundation, with the most sure, steadfast footing possible, apart from which there can be no conflict.

However, distinctions between “peace with God” and “the peace of God” are not what is in view in Ephesians 6:15, for availing oneself of the proper footwear (for both feet) is something that, contextually, occurs following salvation.

In a parallel passage to that which is in view, the latter part of Romans 10:15 states,

How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!

The feet are seen as the vehicle of transportation for the messenger, as he goes about proclaiming good news concerning peace.  Within the overall scope of the good news, as previously stated, there is a facet of the message having to do with “peace with God” (for the unsaved [Romans 5:1]) and there is a facet of the message having to do with the “peace of God” (for the saved [Philippians 4:5-7]).  The contextual emphasis in Romans 10:15 though has to do with the saved, not with the unsaved.

Exactly the same thought is in view regarding the armor in Ephesians 6:15.  Having one’s feet properly shod has to do with proper preparation relative to the good news concerning peace, as it pertains to the saved, exactly as seen in Romans 10:15; and this would be based on the person already having “peace with God,” as seen in Romans 5:1.

The messenger’s feet being properly shod shows a proper preparation of the messenger as he goes about proclaiming this message concerning peace.  And this message of peace would have two facets – the peace of God now (having to do with the present aspect of salvation, the outworking of the saving of the soul), culminating in a future peace when the Prince of Peace is Himself present (having to do with the future aspect of salvation, when the salvation of the soul will be realized).

4)  Above all, taking the shield of faith . . .  (Ephesians 6:16)

The weakness of the average Christian is lack of faith, wrought through the neglect of prayerful study and meditation in the Word of God.

“Faith” is simply believing God, and God speaks to us today through His Word.  This is the reason that “faith comes by [‘out of’] hearing, and hearing by [‘through’] the Word of God” (Romans 10:17).  We find what God has to say about a matter in His Word; and we can then either exercise faith by believing that which He has said, or we can fail to exercise faith through unbelief.

Caleb and Joshua at Kadesh-Barnea exercised “faith.”  They believed that which God had to say about entering into and possessing the land of Canaan (Exodus 2:24-25; 3:7-8; 6:4-8; 13:5, 11, 19; Numbers 13:30).  However, the remainder of the nation, led astray by the “evil report” presented by the other ten spies, failed to exercise “faith.”  They didn’t believe God concerning entrance into the land, and they even went so far as to consider appointing a new leader (someone other than Moses) and returning to Egypt (Numbers 13:31-14:4).

Exactly the same thing confronts Christians today: Will you exercise faith concerning that which God has to say about entrance into the land (in line with that manifested by Caleb and Joshua)? Or, will you fail to exercise faith concerning that which God has to say about entrance into the land (in line with that manifested by the remainder of the nation)?

Caleb and Joshua possessed “the shield of faith”; the remainder of the nation though didn’t possess this shield.  The “shield of faith” is put on by and through simply believing that which God has to say concerning entrance into the land.  It is put on by trusting the Lord to see you safely through the conflict with the world-rulers of this present darkness, resulting in your realizing an inheritance in the land during that coming day.

Possessing the shield of faith would be synonymous with earnestly striving with respect to the faith in Jude 1:3 or striving in the good contest of the faith in 1 Timothy 6:12.

5)  And take the helmet of salvation . . . (Ephesians 6:17a)

This is something that a person already in possession of salvation is to, himself, put on; and it is to be put on in view of a warfare.  Thus, it can be easily seen that putting on “the helmet of salvation” has to do with things beyond that which is foreshadowed by the death of the firstborn and application of the blood in Egypt.  Continuing with the type, it has to do with being properly arrayed (by having arrayed oneself) at Kadesh-Barnea, with a view to entering the land and combating the giants.

1 Thessalonians 5:8 reveals that “the helmet of salvation” is the hope of salvation:

But let us who are of the day [Christians waiting and watching for their Lord’s return (1 Thessalonians 5:6-7)] be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love and for an helmet the hope of salvation.

The “hope of salvation” is a reference to the salvation that will be revealed at the time of Christ’s return – the salvation of the soul.  The “hope” is something that may or may not be realized (cf. Luke 23:8; Acts 16:19; 27:20).  And the salvation of one’s soul, inseparably connected with hope, has to do with realizing an inheritance as God’s firstborn son in the land to which Christians have been called – something that Christians, individually, may or may not realize. 

A Christian can forfeit his inheritance and lose his soul, which itself has nothing to do with his presently possessed eternal salvation.  Again, bear in mind, this is something (as seen in the type) that occurs at Kadesh-Barnea and beyond, not something that occurs back in Egypt.

One clothes himself with the helmet of salvation – the hope of salvation – in view of achieving victory over the inhabitants of the land to which he has been called.  His hope is that of being victorious – being an overcomer – and one day being privileged to ascend the throne and rule as co-heir with Christ in this land.

This is a hope that results in purification in a believer’s life and is a hope that should be on the lips of every believer, as a ready testimony surrounding the purpose for his salvation (1 Peter 3:15; 1 John 3:3).

(See the author’s book, in this site, Ch. 6, Salvation of the Soul BOOK, “Hope, Inheritance, Salvation,” for a more comprehensive discussion of this subject.)

6) . . . and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17b)

A Christian having his waist “girded with truth,” having on “the breastplate of righteousness,” having his “feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace,” taking “the shield of faith,” and having on “the helmet of salvation” is then to take “the sword of the Spirit” – the Word of God – as he goes forth to combat Satan.  After being properly arrayed in all the other revealed fashions, he is then to take the one thing that God has provided as a weapon to be used against the enemy.

2 Timothy 3:16 in the KJV reads,

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God . . . .

The words, “given by inspiration of God,” are a translation of one Greek word, Theopneustos, meaning “God-breathed.”  This is a compound word comprised of Theos (“God”) and pneuma (“breath” in this particular usage [this is also the word used for “Spirit” in the New Testament – the Holy Spirit, man’s spirit, and the use of spirit in general; also “wind” in John 3:8]).

That which is meant by and the implications of Scripture being God-breathed are given in a somewhat simple manner in Scripture, but one has to look at and compare related parts of both Testaments before he can really begin to see and understand that which is involved.  A person has to reference passages in one Testament, then passages in the other.  He has to compare scripture with scripture, i.e., he has to compare “spiritual things with spiritual” (1 Corinthians 2:13).

First note Hebrews 4:12:

The Word of God is quick [lit., alive], and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword . . . .

Why is the Word of God “alive,” “powerful,” and “sharper than any two-edged sword”?  The answer:  Because of its origin.  The Word is “Theopneustos”; the Word is “God-breathed.”

But, what does that mean?  And why is the Word “alive” because of its origin?  This is where one has to go back to beginning points in the Old Testament and find the first mention in Scripture of God bringing a matter to pass through the use of His breath.

This is necessary not only because of the need to compare scripture with scripture but also because of a principle of biblical interpretation called, The First-Mention Principle.

This principle has to do with unchangeableness, and it centers on an unchangeable structure of the Word given by the unchangeable God.  Because of the inherent nature of the Word, the first time a subject is mentioned in Scripture, a pattern, a mold is established at that point that remains unchanged throughout all subsequent Scripture.

Remaining within this principle, the first time one finds the breath of God mentioned in Scripture is in Genesis 2:7, where life was imparted to man by and through God’s breath.  And, consequently, at this beginning point, this verse connects life with the breath of God after an unchangeable fashion.

God formed and fashioned man from the dust of the ground, but man was not created alive.  Life was subsequently imparted through God breathing into man’s “nostrils the breath of life,” resulting in man becoming “a living soul.”

Thus, in Genesis 2:7, the unchangeable connection between God’s breath and life in relation to man is established and set.  Only God can produce life, and any time life is produced beyond this point it must always be through the one means set forth at the beginning, revealed in Genesis 2:7.

There is nothing more powerful at a Christian’s disposal than the Word of God.  It was this Word that Satan chose to use against Christ in the wilderness, and Christ used this same Word as He countered Satan (Matthew 4:1-11).

And going forth, properly arrayed for battle, using the Word as a weapon against the world-rulers of this present darkness, a Christian, at the same time, is to constantly be “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints” (Ephesians 6:18).

If the provided instructions are followed, victory after victory in the present spiritual warfare will ensue.  But, if the provided instructions are not followed . . . .

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Why Must Christians Stand?

Christians should understand that they are in a continuous spiritual warfare.  The following passages of Scripture speak for themselves:

1 Peter 5:8-9
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.  Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.

Matthew 7:15
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.

Matthew 24:5, 11, 24
For many will come in My name, saying, “I am the Christ,” and will deceive many. . . . Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. . . . For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.

Acts 20:24
Since we have heard that some who went out from us have troubled you with words, unsettling your souls, saying, “You must be circumcised and keep the law” – to whom we gave no such commandment. (cf. Acts 15:1, 5)

Acts 20:30
Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.

Romans 16:17-18
Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.  For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple.

2 Corinthians 2:17
For we are not, as so many, peddling [lit: corrupting] the Word of God; but as of sincerity, but as from God, we speak in the sight of God in Christ.

2 Corinthians 11:12-15
But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast.  For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ.  And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light.  Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.

Galatians 6:1-9
I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ.  But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.  As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.

Philippians 3:2
Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilation!

2 Thessalonians 2:3
Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition.

1 Timothy 4:1-2
Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron.

2 Timothy 3:1-5
But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!

2 Timothy 4:3-4
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

2 Peter 2:1
But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.

2 Peter 3:3
Knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts.

1 John 2:18
Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour.

1 John 4:1
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

2 John 1:7
For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

Jude 1:4, 18
For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ. . . . how they told you that there would be mockers in the last time who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts.

Concluding Remarks

A review of the passages within this study should cause one to come to the following conclusion, which is that Christians, who will most assuredly and perpetually be sought out and attacked by Satan and his minions during this (temporal) lifetime, will only be able to successfully survive spiritually, i.e., achieve the salvation of their souls, if they take the courageous position of standing firm in the faith, a station of spiritual maturity that may only be obtained as one studies and absorbs the meat (i.e., “Word of the Kingdom”) of God’s Word.  By so doing, Christians will be able to dress in “the whole of armor of God” and be able to routinely defeat evil on every hand; and, one day soon, be able to be rewarded by Christ at His Judgment Seat (1 Corinthians 3:12-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10).

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Bible One – Charles Strong’s Watch and Stand Fast in the Faith

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The “doctrines of demons” in the text from 1 Timothy 4:1-3 would involve a counterfeit parallel to the truth presented in the Word of God.  God has His deep things, and Satan has his deep things (1 Corinthians 2:10; Revelation 2:24).  And the latter, as it is presented in Scripture, is simply a corruption of the former.  It is taking the former, remaining within the same framework as the former, and producing a counterfeit, a corrupted parallel.

Doctrines of Demons and Ministry of the Spirit Today
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Doctrines of Demons

The “doctrines of demons” in the text from 1 Timothy 4:1-3 would involve a counterfeit parallel to the truth presented in the Word of God.  God has His deep things, and Satan has his deep things (1 Corinthians 2:10; Revelation 2:24).  And the latter, as it is presented in Scripture, is simply a corruption of the former.  It is taking the former, remaining within the same framework as the former, and producing a counterfeit, a corrupted parallel.

For example, Scripture begins with a foundational framework (Genesis 1:1-2:3), providing an unchangeable pattern for the whole of that which God was about to lay out in His Word (Genesis 2:4ff).  And Satan begins at the same point, providing a corrupted parallel to that which God has laid out in His Word (cf. 2 Peter 3:3-8).

Satan not only has his corrupted parallel relative to salvation by grace through faith (Genesis 1:2-5 [2b]), but he has his corrupted parallel relative to present and future aspects of salvation as well — the salvation of the soul (Genesis 1:6ff).  And, as God in His Word places the emphasis on present and future aspects of salvation (not only in Genesis 1:1-2:3, but also in the remainder of Scripture), so does Satan in his counterfeit parallel.

And, as God in His Word reveals a specific goal for man’s salvation (not only in Genesis 1:1-2:3, but also in the remainder of Scripture), Satan seeks to entirely corrupt this teaching in his counterfeit parallel.

Satan places the emphasis where God has placed the emphasis, and he seeks to set forth a counterfeit at the same points God has set forth the truth (cf. Isaiah 14:13-14).  He has taken God’s truth and introduced error in his efforts to mislead the masses.

(A good counterfeit will approximate the original as closely as possible; and, as with any good counterfeit, it is easier to mislead the masses in this manner [cf. 2 Corinthians 11:13-15].)

Then note that God’s Word is directed to the saved, not the unsaved.  The unsaved are “dead in trespasses and sins” and cannot understand this Word (Ephesians 2:1; cf. 1 Corinthians 2:14).

And so it is with Satan and his counterfeit parallels.  These counterfeit teachings have been designed for those who have “passed from death to life” (John 5:24).  Those “dead in trespasses and sins” are in no position to understand spiritual issues — whether “corrupted” (emanating from Satan) or “uncorrupted” (emanating from God).  Both fall completely outside the realm of the natural (the soulical).

Such a corruption of the truth, received by the saved, can easily be seen in the text from the book of 1 Timothy (1 Timothy 4:1-3), where Paul sounded a warning.  Paul foretold a departure from “the faith” where some Christians would begin giving heed to “deceiving spirits” rather than to God’s Word; and these deceiving spirits would teach that which was untrue, specifically referred to in the text as the “doctrines of demons.”

These Christians’ spiritual awareness would become seared (Greek: kausteriazo;  English, “cauterize” — to burn, as with a hot iron, to the point of destroying that which is being burned), resulting in a departure from “the faith.”  And, relative to “the faith” from which they had departed, they would begin proclaiming that which is false, that which is in line with the “doctrines of demons.”  They would begin proclaiming a message opposed to that which the Word of God had to say about two things:  (1) Marriage, and (2) Meats (1 Timothy 4:1-3).

The subject of “marriage” points to a work occurring during Man’s Day (the truth surrounding the matter established before and at the time of man’s creation), which would be brought to fruition and realized in the future Lord’s Day; and “meats” has to do with that part of biblical doctrine that centers around this overall subject (1 Timothy 4:6, 13, 16).

And those which are seen being misled in 1 Timothy 4:1-3, “in latter times” by “deceiving spirits,” resulting in their proclaiming “doctrines of demons,” are seen, “standing in the way of marriage . . . .” (literal thought from the Greek text [1 Timothy 4:3a]) and are referred to as apostates.  Further, a misleading of individuals after this fashion is presented in a very specific and limited sense in Scripture.  It is presented specifically as and limited to an apostasy from the faith — nothing more, nothing less.

1)  Apostasy from the Faith

“Apostasy” has to do with standing away from a position previously held, and “the faith” is an expression that encompasses the whole of a specific part of the Word of God (actually, the central teaching) — “the Word of the Kingdom.”  The Spirit of God, revealing through Paul the central message that Christians were to be taught, explicitly singled out that which would occur “in latter times” in Christendom relative to this central message.

In short, there would be a departure from this central message; and that which is associated with the doctrines of demons would, instead, be taught.

a)  Apostasy

The word “depart” in 1 Timothy 4:1 is a translation of the Greek word, aphistemi, which is the verb form of the noun, apostasia.  And apostasia is the word from which our English word “apostasy” is derived.  The English word “apostasy” is simply an Anglicized form of the Greek word apostasia.  Accordingly, to understand that which is meant by “apostasy,” the Greek word needs to be referenced.

Apostasia is a compound word comprised of apo and stasisApo means “from,” and stasis means “to stand.”  Thus, the literal meaning of the word is “to stand from,” or “to stand away from.”  An apostate, in the true sense of the word, is simply someone standing away from, departing from, a position previously held.

In 1 Timothy 4:1, the departure from the previously held position is specifically stated to pertain to “the faith.”  That is, seducing spirits, promulgating the doctrines of demons, are seen leading individuals adhering to “the faith” (of necessity, Christians, not unsaved individuals [1 Corinthians 2:14]) away from this position.

b)  The Faith

The central thrust surrounding the truth of the matter, derived from the Word of God, has to do with “the faith.”  And the central thrust surrounding that which is false, derived from the doctrines of demons, also has to do with “the faith.”  One emanates from “the deep things of God,” and the other emanates from “the depths [lit., ‘the deep things’] of Satan” (1 Corinthians 2:10; Revelation 2:24).  The former is the Truth; the latter is a corrupted, counterfeit parallel to the Truth.

The expression “the faith” is peculiarly related in Scripture to the overall scope of the Word of the Kingdom, to the mystery revealed to Paul, to the gospel of the glory of Christ, to the salvation of the soul.  This is the manner in which the expression appears in numerous New Testament references — in the Gospels, in the book of Acts, and in the Epistles (both Pauline and General).

Christ, during the course of His earthly ministry, at His first coming, looked 2,000 years ahead to His second coming, and, through a question, called attention to a solitary fact concerning the central message of the New Testament.  Christ asked, “. . . when the Son of Man [a Messianic title] comes, will he really find faith [lit., ‘the faith’] on the earth?” (Luke 18:8).  And the manner in which the question is worded in the Greek text designates a negative answer.

The Son of Man will not find “the faith” being taught in Christendom at the time of His return.  The leaven that the woman placed in the three measures of meal in Matthew 13:33 (having to do with the doctrines of demons) will have taken care of that.

Now, if the expression, “the faith,” refers to that which is held by fundamental Christendom today (the whole of man’s categorization of fundamental doctrines; e.g., the virgin birth, the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, salvation by grace through faith, etc.) — as commonly taught — then a major problem exists.

Fundamentalism, in the preceding respect, is presently a major force in Christendom; and “the faith” would be something held to and proclaimed throughout a rather large segment of Christendom.  Thus, if “the faith” is to be understood as a reference to the body of biblical doctrines, as held by those recognized as “fundamental Christians,” then conditions in Christendom are such that Christ cannot return during the present time.  Fundamentalism of this nature is presently alive and well in Christendom.  In fact, it is actually a growing force in numerous quarters.  Millions of Christians in this country alone would fall within the mainstream of fundamentalism and adhere to this body of biblical doctrine.

But the preceding is really neither here nor there, for, when one looks to Scripture for its own definition of “the faith,” something completely different is seen.  Scripture uses this expression in a very limited sense.  Scripture uses this expression in contexts having to do with the Word of the Kingdom, not in contexts having to do with the complete body of fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith.

Doctrines of “the faith,” in the preceding respect, in actuality, represent that which man has attempted to categorize as he has looked at the Scriptures, not doctrines seen through allowing Scripture to interpret Scripture.  And it is the latter alone, not the former, which allows man to look into the Scriptures and view matters from the way God has recorded them in His Word.  There is a vast difference in viewing Scripture from the preceding two vantage points, especially when it comes to dealing with “the faith.”

To take the biblical expression, “the faith,” and attempt to identify it with man’s categorization of doctrine (a list of biblical doctrines) is the height of folly in Scriptural interpretation.  Scripture is always to be interpreted in the light of Scripture (1 Corinthians 2:9-13).  And this is exactly the way in which the expression, “the faith,” must be understood.

Scripture must be allowed to explain that which is meant by the expression.  It is an expression that is used over and over in Scripture.  And the interesting thing is that Scripture not only clearly explains how this expression is used, but it does so in numerous instances.

Paul, for example, in his first letter to Timothy, following his warning concerning the apostates, said:

Fight the good fight of [the] faith, lay hold on eternal life [lit., ‘Strive in the good contest of the faith, lay hold on life for the age’], to which you were also called . . . . (1 Timothy 6:12)

And, in Paul’s second letter to Timothy, a similar usage is again seen:

“I have fought the good fight [lit., ‘I have strived in the good contest’], I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness . . . .” (2 Timothy 4:7-8)

Or, when Jude sought to write an epistle relative to the “common salvation [the good news concerning salvation by grace through faith, a subject which none of the epistles centers on],” the Spirit of God led him to write on an entirely different subject.  The Spirit of God led Jude to write an epistle exhorting Christians to “earnestly contend [lit., ‘earnestly strive’] for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints [the good news concerning salvation in relation to the coming glory of Christ, something seen as central in the subject matter of all the epistles]” (Jude 1:3).

The words “fight” (1 Timothy 6:12), “fought” (2 Timothy 4:7), and “contend” (Jude 1:3) are translations of the same word in the Greek text — agonizomai, the word from which our English word, “agonize,” is derived.

In Jude though, the word has been intensified through the writer prefixing the Greek preposition epi to the word, forming epagonizomai.  Thus, the correct translation would be, “earnestly strive . . . .”

In all three of the preceding passages, the thought, through the use of agonizomai, has to do with straining every muscle of one’s being relative tothe faith.”

In the first two references (from 1, 2 Timothy), the picture is that of an athletic contest.  Christians are to strain every muscle of their being in the present race ofthe faithin which they find themselves engaged.

Then Jude, in the face of apostasy relative to “the faith,” still remaining within the thought of an athletic contest, intensified the word.  Jude, because of apostasy among Christians relative to “the faith” — Christians giving heed to deceiving spirits, teaching the doctrines of demons (something also spoken of by Christ, Paul, and Peter) — intensified the thought of striving in his exhortation.  He, in essence, exhorted Christians, while running the race of “the faith,” to be especially and particularly on guard because of the apostates.

And it is apparent that Jude intensified this word, with a view to the apostates, because of the specific nature of apostasy, because of the realm in which the apostates had centered their teachings — seeking to mislead Christians relative to “the faith,” seeking to draw Christians away from the central teaching of Scripture.  The “doctrines of demons,” promulgated by the apostates, is the most dangerous and deadly teaching that has ever been proclaimed or ever will be proclaimed in Christian circles.  And, because of this, Jude exhorted Christians to strain every muscle of their being in the race of “the faith.”

The preceding would form only a few examples of the way in which the expression, “the faith,” is used in the New Testament.  Other examples would be the conversion of priests in Israel during the reoffer of the kingdom, who were then “obedient to the faith” (Acts 6:7), disciples exhorted “to continue in the faith” relative to entrance into the kingdom (Acts 14:22), Paul proclaiming “the faith” which he had once sought to destroy (Galatians 1:23; cf. Ephesians 6:16; Philippians 1:27; Colossians 1:23; 2:7; 1 Thessalonians 5:8; 2 Thessalonians 1:4, 11; 1 Timothy 1:2, 18-20; 5:8; 6:10, 21; 2 Timothy 2:18; 3:7-8), and the usage of the expression in the general epistles (cf. Hebrews 12:2; James 1:3; 2:14, 17-18, 20, 22, 26; 1 Peter 1:7, 9).  “Faith” is articular in the Greek text in each of the preceding references.

Thus, there is a uniform usage of this expression throughout the New Testament.  And, though it doesn’t have to do with the body of biblical doctrine held by those forming “fundamental Christendom,” it does have to do with a body of biblical doctrine.  It has to do with that body of biblical doctrine rejected by Christendom at large — liberals and fundamentalists alike.  It has to do with that body of biblical doctrine referred to in various ways in Scripture — the Word of the Kingdom, the mystery, Paul’s gospel, the gospel of the glory of Christ, etc.

2)  Marriage, Meats

Foundational principals and biblical doctrine surrounding the marriage relationship have forever been set forth in the opening chapters of Genesis.  And, any time one finds the man and the woman together beyond this point — whether during Man’s Day or during the coming Lord’s Day — rulership is in view.  Or, to present the truth of the matter from another perspective, turn the statement around.  Any time one finds rulership in view beyond the opening chapters of Genesis (relative to man), a husband-wife relationship must also be in view.

This is why Israel is seen as the wife of Jehovah in the Old Testament theocracy — a wife later seen as an adulterous wife, resulting in God divorcing Israel — with God then, of necessity, ending the Old Testament theocracy (cf. Jeremiah 3:1-14; Ezekiel 9:3; 10:4, 18; 11:22-23).  And this is why, before a theocracy can be established on the earth yet future, Israel has to be cleansed and restored to her former place, as the wife of Jehovah.  A Husband-wife relationship must exist at this time.

This is also why Christ is to have a wife yet future.  If Christ is to reign over the earth as the second Man, the last Adam, He must have a consort queen to reign with Him.  This is why a marriage must occur prior to the time He reigns.  A Husband-wife relationship must exist at this time.

And further, this is why the husband-wife relationship today, during Man’s Day, is dealt with in Scripture in connection with an heirship together (1 Peter 3:7).  There is a present reigning in life, seen in the marriage relationship; and this is at the heart of that which Paul refers to as “a great mystery” relative to “Christ and the Church” in Ephesians 5:21-33.

There are two books in the Old Testament that bear the names of women.  One is “Ruth,” and the other is “Esther.”  And, interestingly enough, no one knows who wrote either book.  But the book of Ruth presents one aspect of this overall matter, and the book of Esther presents the other.

The book of Ruth has to do with a Gentile who marries a Jew, with a redeemed inheritance in view.  Ruth, in her marriage to Boaz, sets forth truths surrounding Christ and His wife yet future.  And the entire book of Ruth sets forth the overall scope of the matter from beginning to end, with the husband-wife relationship being brought to the forefront in the end.

The book of Esther then presents the matter as it relates to God and Israel.  Esther was a Jew whom King Ahasuerus (who was not a Jew [note that it is God’s Son who is a Jew and will so remain throughout eternity, not the Father]) had taken as his wife following the former queen’s (Vashti’s) refusal to fulfill her role as the king’s wife (Esther 1:9ff).  Then the remainder of the book revolves around Israel in the latter days (Haman typifying Antichrist), the end of Gentile world power, and Israel restored to the nation’s rightful place as the wife of Jehovah (Esther 2:17ff).

(For additional information on the preceding, refer to the author’s books, Ruth by Arlen Chitwood and Esther by Arlen Chitwood.)

Thus, the whole of that seen in the marriage relationship beyond Genesis 1:26-28 (along with that revealed in Genesis 2) rests on these foundational verses in Genesis.  The husband-wife relationship today has its basis in the past (Genesis 1:26ff) and points to the future (Revelation 19:7ff).  And whether it is Israel on the earth or the Church in the heavens, there can be no future reign over the earth apart from this relationship existing between God and Israel and between Christ and the Church.

Ministry of the Spirit Today

Understanding the preceding will allow one to clearly understand that which God revealed concerning Israel and the Church in Genesis 22; 23; 24; 25 .  In these four chapters, God, through Moses, revealed things concerning both the wife of Jehovah and the wife of Christ; and this was based on that which is revealed in the first three chapters of Genesis, but with a view to the goal of the matter in the future Lord’s Day.  And God set all of this forth long before He brought either Israel or the Church into existence (cf. Isaiah 46:9-10).

The ministry of the Spirit during the present dispensation is seen in Genesis 24, fifteen hundred years before it even began.  Events in this chapter — Abraham sending his servant into the far country to obtain a bride for His son, typifying God sending the Spirit into the world to obtain a bride for His Son — occurred following the offering of Isaac (Genesis 22) and the death of Sarah (Genesis 23), but before the remarriage of Abraham (Genesis 25).

That is to say, the ministry of the Spirit during the present dispensation occurs following the events of Calvary (Genesis 22) and the setting aside of Israel (Genesis 23), but before the time God restores Israel as His wife (Genesis 25).  And further, the ministry of the Spirit in the world today, as seen in the type in Genesis 24, is clearly revealed to be that of obtaining a bride for God’s Son.  And, in line with the preceding, any facet of the Spirit’s work during the time of His mission — whether it be among the unsaved (effecting life, based on the finished work of the Son) or among the saved (leading saved individuals “into all truth,” from gnosis to epignosis [from immaturity to maturity]) — must center around His revealed mission, as seen in Genesis 24.

The reason why God sent the Spirit into the world to accomplish such a mission is easy to see and understand if one keeps in mind the God-established issues surrounding the husband-wife relationship.  The Son must have a wife if He is to reign.  And Christians as well — anticipating the Son’s reign — cannot reign apart from this same relationship.

The coming millennial reign of the Son will be a theocracy wherein God the Father will have a wife on earth (seen in the type in Genesis 25) and the Son will have a wife in the heavens above the earth (a wife presently being procured through the work of the Spirit, seen in the type in Genesis 24).  And in order for any individual from the human race to rule and reign in that coming day, that person will have to be a part of either the wife of Jehovah on the earth or the wife of the Son in the heavens.  There can be no rule and reign for anyone — man, or God’s Son — apart from this established, Husband-wife relationship.

The preceding is why “marriage” and “meats” are singled out in 1 Timothy 4:3.  The marriage relationship today is based on that which God established in past time, and reflects on that which will ultimately be brought into full fruition during future time.  And it matters not whether the word “marriage” in this verse is understood in a literal sense (referring to the marriage relationship today) or in a spiritual sense (referring to Christ and His wife yet future), the same thing is still being dealt with.  A husband-wife relationship today is based on that which God established in the past and directly reflects on that which He will bring to fruition yet future.  It directly reflects on Christ and His wife yet future.

And the preceding is why any corruption of the marriage relationship by man (adultery, homosexuality, etc.) is dealt with so severely in Scripture.  Any deviation from that which God established is a corruption, with far-reaching ramifications.

Marriage, as established by God, has to do with regality; and this regality is to be realized in its ultimate sense during the coming Messianic Era.  All of man’s corruptions are simply offshoots of Satan’s attempted, multi-faceted corruption surrounding the whole panorama of biblical doctrine (“meats”) pertaining to the marriage relationship.

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“Sonship” implies rulership (cf. II Samuel 7:12-14; Matthew 3:17; 4:3-8; 17:5; II Peter 1:17). Sons alone occupy positions of rulership within God’s kingdom. That’s the way it has always been, that’s the way it presently exists, and that’s the way it will always continue to exist.

The Sons of God Are The Rulers in God’s Kingdom
By Arlen L. Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Sonship” implies rulership (cf. II Samuel 7:12-14; Matthew 3:17; 4:3-8; 17:5; II Peter 1:17). Sons alone occupy positions of rulership within God’s kingdom. That’s the way it has always been, that’s the way it presently exists, and that’s the way it will always continue to exist.

Satan — The Present Ruler

Satan, the incumbent ruler over the earth (the ruler whom God placed over the earth in the beginning, the only ruler this earth has ever had), is a son of God; and angels ruling under him are also sons of God.

Angels are sons of God because of special creative acts of God. And an angelic rule of the nature which Satan holds is seemingly not peculiar to just this earth, one province in God’s kingdom. This is a form of rule which evidently exists on provinces throughout God’s kingdom, not only in our own galaxy but in other galaxies created and placed throughout the entire universe over which God exercises governmental power and sovereign control (Job 1:6-12; 2:1-7).

Satan is “the anointed [‘messianic’] cherub,” placed by God “upon the holy mountain of God,” though one day to be cast out of this “mountain [this kingdom]” (Ezekiel 28:14-16).

(The “cherubim” [singular, “cherub”] are first mentioned in Scripture in connection with the earth’s government, establishing a first-mention principle, and, resultantly, showing an unchangeable way in which angels designated by this name are seen throughout Scripture.

Cherubim are first seen in Scripture guarding the entrance to the garden in Eden following man being driven from the garden because of sin [Genesis 3:24]. They were placed as guardians to prevent man from reentering the garden, in his fallen state, and eating of the tree of life — the tree which would have provided [and will yet future provide] the wisdom and knowledge for man to rule and reign over the earth.

And a “mountain” in Scripture signifies a kingdom [cf. Isaiah 2:1-4; Daniel 2:34-35, 44-45; Matthew 17:1-5]. Satan, in his unfallen state, was given a kingdom [this earth]; and he was placed, by God, as the messianic angel [the ruling angel] over this “mountain,” this kingdom [Ezekiel 28:14].)

Satan though, the appointed ruling angel over one kingdom in the universe, rebelled against the One Who had placed him in this position. He sought to “exalthis throne and become “like the most High,” i.e., he sought to place himself in a position where he could rule all the kingdoms of the universe rather than just the one kingdom over which he had been placed (Isaiah 14:13-14). And, as a result, judgment was pronounced upon Satan (Isaiah 14:15-17; Ezekiel 28:15-19), and his kingdom was reduced to a state of complete ruin (Genesis 1:2a).

But Satan himself and the angels who accompanied him in his rebellion continued to reign, though over a ruined kingdom. A principle of Biblical government necessitates that an incumbent ruler, though he may have disqualified himself, continue to hold his position until his God-appointed successor is not only on the scene but ready to assume the reins of governmental power and authority (e.g., the account of Saul and David in I Samuel 15-II Samuel 1).

God has reserved to Himself the right and power to remove one ruler and position another within His kingdom after this fashion (Daniel 4:17-32; 5:17-21) — a right and power which Satan sought to usurp.

Man — Created to Rule

Scripture opens with one brief statement concerning God, in the beginning, creating the heavens and the earth; and this is followed by one brief statement concerning the earth being reduced to a ruined state (Genesis 1:1-2a). Then Scripture continues with a detailed account (though brief) of how God restored the ruined province within His kingdom over a six-day period at a later point in time (Genesis 2-25 [2b]).

And immediately following the restoration of the ruined province, on the same day that God completed His restorative work, He created man, for a revealed purpose. The material creation was restored with a view to man’s creation, and man was created for the purpose of replacing the disqualified, incumbent ruler, Satan (Genesis 1:26-28).

But, though the first man, Adam, was present — a son of God, because of God’s special creative act (a position which Adam had to hold in order to fulfill the purpose surrounding his creation [cf. Luke 3:38]) — God didn’t immediately remove Satan and place Adam on the throne. Rather, God allowed the fall to occur, leaving the man disqualified (along with his descendants, who would be sons of Adam [not sons of God], begotten in Adam’s fallen image and likeness), allowing Satan to continue holding the sceptre. And this was for purposes involving God’s Son, the second Man, the last Adam (Genesis 3:1ff; I Corinthians 15:45-47).

Then, 4,000 years later — at the time of Christ’s baptism at the hands of John — God said of the second Man, the last Adam, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). And this announcement had to do with the matter at hand — Christ’s position in relation to the earth’s government.

Immediately after the Father had declared Jesus to be His “beloved Son,” the Spirit led Jesus “into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil” (Matthew 4:1ff). Where the first man, the first Adam, had failed, Jesus, as the second Man, the last Adam, showed that He wouldn’t, and really couldn’t, fail. Jesus demonstrated, to the incumbent ruler, that He, as God’s Son, was fully qualified to take the sceptre.

This was the crux of that which occurred in the temptation account, seen at the very outset of Christ’s ministry; and this was why the temptation at the hands of the incumbent ruler centered around two things:

1) Satan questioning Jesus’ Sonship (“If thou be the Son of God…”).

2) Satan offering to Jesus all the “power” and “glory” associated with “the kingdoms of the world,” which God had “delivered” unto him, contingent on Jesus falling down and worshipping him (cf. Matthew 4:3-9; Luke 4:3-7).

The Coming Manifestation of a New Order of Sons

For the past 3,500 years God has had two firstborn Sons, Israel and Christ (Exodus 4:22-23; Hebrews 1:6). And the main thought behind this standing, in relation to both Sons, concerns the rights of the firstborn.

Israel became God’s firstborn son when the nation was adopted during Moses’ day, but Jesus has been God’s firstborn Son from eternity.

The rights possessed by firstborn sons in the Old Testament were threefold — regal rights, priestly rights, and the right to receive a double portion of the father’s goods. The first¬born was to be the ruler of the family (regal rights), the spiritual head of the family (priestly rights), and receive a double portion of the father’s goods when the inheritance was divided.

Israel is God’s firstborn son because of a special creative act, followed by adoption. Jacob was a special creation of God, and God adopted the nation descending from Jacob through his twelve sons (Isaiah 43:1; Romans 9:4). And, possessing a national firstborn status of this nature, Israel was (and remains today) in line to exercise national kingly and priestly rights in relation to the Gentile nations of the earth.

Israel was to rule the nations, and the nations were to be blessed through Israel; and, originally, Israel was to realize this status through occupying both heavenly and earthly positions in the kingdom — giving Israel a double portion.

Christ though is God’s firstborn Son after an entirely different fashion. He has been God’s firstborn Son from eternity. He is spoken of as “the firstborn of every creature [‘of all creation’]” (Colossians 1:15), “the firstborn from the dead” (Colossians 1:18; cf. Revelations 1:5), and “the firstborn among many brethren” (Romans 8:29). Christ is the Son above all sons, seated at the right hand of Power in the heavens.

And this is the Son Whom the Father begat, Who showed that He was fully qualified to take the earth’s sceptre, and then paid redemption’s price so that man could be placed back in the position for which he had been created; this is the Son Who offered Israel positions with Him, ruling from the heavens, following that time when His Father would give the kingdom to Him and remove the incumbent ruler; and this is the Son Who today, through the Spirit, is offering these same positions (rejected by Israel) to Christians.

And though God presently has these two firstborn Sons, with a view to these two Sons one day exercising the rights of primogeniture, God will, before these Sons exercise the rights of the firstborn, bring into existence a third firstborn son. God’s firstborn son Israel has forfeited the right to rule and reign from the heavens over the earth (though still retaining earthly regal rights), and God will one day bring into existence another firstborn son to occupy these heavenly positions.

Christians, as the Israelites, form a special creation, though an entirely different type creation (II Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 3:26-29). And, because of this special creation, with sonship involved, Christians, as the Israelites, can one day be adopted as firstborn sons.

Christians are presently seen as both “children” and “sons” (e.g., Romans 8:14-17; positions in which they cannot rule), but they will one day be adopted as “firstborn sons [a position in which they can, and will, rule]” (Romans 8:18-23). God will then have a third firstborn son (Hebrews 12:23), with this son having been adopted for the same purpose that Israel was adopted — to realize the rights of primogeniture.

During the Messianic Era, God’s firstborn son, the Church, will rule from the heavens over the nations of the earth; God’s firstborn son, Israel, will rule on the earth, over the Gentile nations; and God’s firstborn Son, Jesus, will have a dual reign, ruling both from the heavens on His Own throne and from the earth on David’s throne.

The entire creation — “made subject to vanity [i.e., rendered unfit (because of Adam’s sin, resulting in the curse) to fulfill the reason for its restoration]” — presently groans and travails in pain, awaiting “the manifestation” of these Sons (Romans 8:18-23). And the day when this manifestation will occur is not far removed.

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Sons of God by Arlen Chitwood pdf 

Word Document:  The Sons of God Are The Rulers in God’s Kingdom by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

To website CONTENTS Page.

God works with set times, set ways, particular individuals, nations (Israel, and the nations through Israel) through which His plans and purposes are worked out and brought to pass.

Antichrist Cannot Appear Until…
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Contents:
 

Part I

That Presently Preventing this Man’s Appearance

“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,

That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ [‘the Day of the Lord’] is at hand.

Let no man deceive you by any means:  for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away [‘the apostasy’] first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition:

Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped;  so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

Remember ye not, that when I was with you, I told you these things?

And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.

For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:  only he who now letteth will let [‘he who now hindereth will hinder’], until he be taken out of the way.

And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders” (II Thessalonians 2:1-9).

That seen in II Thessalonians 2:6-7, preventing the appearance of “the son of perdition” (the Beast, Antichrist), has been an enigma to numerous Bible students over the years, though it shouldn’t be.  Exactly as seen in other passages of Scripture, presenting similar problems for many (e.g., I Timothy 2:12-15; Hebrews 6:4-6), understanding and interpreting Scripture contextually and in the light of related Scripture can only shed a flood of light on the subject.

God simply has not stated things in His Word which cannot be understood through the method which He has provided — comparing Scripture with Scripture.  And the converse of that is equally true.

But, comparing Scripture with Scripture, one invariably finds himself involved in the numerous ways God has structured his Word (Hebrews 1:1-2), which would have to include things such as types and often metaphors and signs.  And a person simply cannot interpret Scripture in the light of itself apart from recognizing and utilizing this structure, understanding and interpreting the Word accordingly.

I Thessalonians

First, let’s note the whole of that which has preceded in I Thessalonians, leading into that then dealt with in II Thessalonians.  Then we’ll center more on the text and immediate context in II Thessalonians 2, working from there out into other related Scripture.

I Thessalonians could be summarized as a dissertation to those in “the church of the Thessalonians” relative to the contents of Paul’s gospel, with the word “gospel” (Gk., euaggelion), as it is used throughout the epistle (used seven times), referring to this particular facet of the overall gospel message (I Thessalonians 1:5; 2:2-3, 8-9; 3:2, 8).

Paul’s gospel, having to do with “the mystery” revealed to him at the outset of his ministry (Galatians 1:11-12; Ephesians 3:1-6), was a message to the saved, not the unsaved.  It had to do with the continued good news one was to hear after he had heard and responded to the gospel of the grace of God (e.g. the gospel of grace seen in Ephesians 2:8-9, with the continuing aspect of the good news, corresponding to Paul’s gospel, seen in Ephesians 2:10).

(For additional information on Paul’s gospel, refer to the author’s pamphlets titled, “The Mystery by Arlen Chitwood,” “Paul's Gospel by Arlen Chitwood,” and “Paul and the Gospel by Arlen Chitwood.” Note also that the word “gospel” in the epistles is used far more often relative to the gospel of the glory of Christ [that aspect of the overall gospel message which Paul referred to as “my gospel,” “our gospel” (cf. II Corinthians 4:3-4, NKJV, NASB95, NIV)] than it is used relative to the gospel of the grace of God.)

This aspect of the good news is introduced in I Thessalonians 1:5 as “our gospel,” setting the stage for the use of the word gospel throughout both epistles.  And, as Paul referenced this aspect of the good news different ways in Romans 1 (“gospel of God,” “gospel of his Son,” “gospel of Christ” [Romans 1:1, 9, 15-16; cf. Romans 2:16; 16:25]), he does the same thing in I Thessalonians (“gospel of God,” “gospel of Christ,” “good tidings [‘gospel’] of your faith” [I Thessalonians 2:2, 8-9, 3:2, 6]).

Note II Thessalonians 2:14 pertaining to the content of Paul’s gospel:

“Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Then note the crux of the message, emanating from a proclamation of this good news which Paul was writing about to those in this Church, as seen in I Thessalonians 2:11-12:

“As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children.

That ye walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory” (cf. I Peter 5:6-10).

This then merges into a section on the rapture and that which lies beyond the rapture relative to the Son’s coming kingdom, seen in the latter part of chapter four and the first part of chapter five (I Thessalonians 4:13-5:10).  Then, the remainder of the book has to do with Paul’s closing remarks.

II Thessalonians

The second epistle to the Thessalonians simply continues from where the first left off, beginning with two types of Christians at Christ’s coming, at the end of the Tribulation.  I Thessalonians left off with matters surrounding the rapture and subsequent accounting of Christians, preceding the Tribulation (I Thessalonians 4:13-5:10), wherein these two types of Christians had been seen — the faithful, who had heeded Paul’s exhortations;  the unfaithful, who had failed to heed these exhortations.

For one (the faithful), removed from Man’s Day into the Lord’s Day, “salvation” awaited;  for the other (the unfaithful), removed from Man’s Day into the Lord’s Day, “wrath” awaited (I Thessalonians 5:1-9).

Then II Thessalonians chapter one begins with events occurring at a time at least seven years later, following the Tribulation, following Christ’s return.  And again, two types of Christians are seen.

The faithful are seen realizing an inheritance, realizing the “salvation” of I Thessalonians 5:9, in “his kingdom and glory” (II Thessalonians 1:5 and II Thessalonians 1:10-2:1);  and the unfaithful are seen being denied an inheritance in His kingdom, realizing the “wrath” of I Thessalonians 5:9 (II Thessalonians 1:6-9).

(To understand the preceding any other way, as so many do, [e.g., seeing I Thessalonians 5:1-10 and II Thessalonians 1:5-12 dealing with the Tribulation and saved-unsaved issues during and following the Tribulation, or see I Thessalonians 5:9 and II Thessalonians 2:1 dealing with the rapture], is to throw about any type sound Scriptural interpretation one can think of to the winds — plain reading of the text, contextual, comparing Scripture with Scripture, etc.

When this is done on a scale which encompasses almost the whole of Christendom — which is exactly what is currently happening — is it any wonder that Today’s Christendom finds itself described in the words of Revelation 3:15-17, because of that seen in Matthew 13:33?)

With the preceding in mind, note how II Thessalonians 2:2ff continues from the way that the book is introduced, drawing from the whole of Paul’s prior message to the Thessalonians in his first epistle.

In II Thessalonians 1, Paul projects matters, as it relates to Christians, out into the Messianic Era (with the groundwork having been laid in his first epistle to the Thessalonians).

Then moving into II Thessalonians 2, someone had evidently spread false information among the Thessalonians relative to the matter at hand (via “word ”or “letter,” as from Paul), making the Christians in Thessalonica believe that they were presently in the Lord’s Day, leaving them quite confused.

(The Day of the Lord, the Lord’s Day [II Thessalonians 2:2, “the day of Christ” should be translated, “the Day of the Lord”], has always been in existence, but not on earth.  The Lord’s Day begins on earth only at the end of Man’s Day, at the end of the Tribulation following Christ’s return.  This is the manner in which the matter is set forth anyplace this is dealt with in Scripture [e.g., Joel 2:1ff; 3:1ff; Zephaniah 1:7-18].

This is why, in I Thessalonians 5:2 and Revelation 1:10, that Christians removed from the earth in the rapture, removed from Man’s Day, will find themselves in the Lord’s Day.

And the widespread, erroneous teaching that the Lord’s Day overlaps the last seven years of Man’s Day is one of the main causes of the numerous false teachings in I, II Thessalonians, among other places.)

Now, with the preceding in mind, note that II Thessalonians 2:2ff deals with the Lord’s Day on earth, not in the heavens.  The Thessalonians had evidently been taught that they were now in the Lord’s Day, in the Millennium.  And nothing about existing conditions matched that which was supposed to exist on earth, where they still resided, during that future day.  Understandably, they could only have been confused.

Paul begins straightening matters out by calling attention to two things which must occur before the Lord’s Day could exist on earth — things, with related events, which had not yet occurred.

An apostasy must occur first (“a falling away” [II Thessalonians 2:3 KJV], is from apostasia in the Greek text, meaning “apostasy”), and the man of sin (the one who will sit in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God) must also be revealed first (II Thessalonians 2:4).

Neither of these had occurred.

“The mystery of iniquity” (II Thessalonians 2:7), which could only relate to Christians (ref. Part II of this pamphlet series), was already working.  But this must reach a final stage, which, according to related Scriptures, would be complete apostasy (cf. Matthew 13:33; Luke 18:8; Revelation 3:14-20).

And, as previously stated, the man of sin must be revealed, along with an outworking of the things stated about him (II Thessalonians 2:3-12).

Only then could the Lord’s Day exist on earth.

Then Paul stated that there was one thing, in conjunction with the apostasy, which must occur before the man of sin could be revealed, allowing Man’s Day to subsequently end and the Lord’s Day to begin on earth.

And that one thing is spoken of as something presently in existence which held back the appearance of the man of sin (II Thessalonians 2:6), something which had to be removed before the man of sin could be revealed (II Thessalonians 2:7).

But, at what point during the Tribulation will the man of sin be revealed — seen by his actions at the beginning (Revelation 6:1-2), or seen by his actions starting in the middle (Revelation 6:3-4)?

Things spoken of in II Thessalonians 2:3ff about the revelation of the man of sin have to do with events occurring in the middle of the Tribulation and extending throughout the last half (Matthew 24:15ff).  But, within the revealed mannerism which he will exhibit in that day (II Thessalonians 2:4, 9 [4a]) there appears to be an allusion to his actions throughout the Tribulation.

But all information on a subject is not given one place in Scripture, which is why Scripture must be compared with Scripture in order to begin seeing a more complete picture.  These and other related things will be developed in following Part II, which will center on that which is preventing any present revelation of this man.

Part II

That Presently Preventing this Man’s Appearance

“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,

That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ [‘the Day of the Lord’] is at hand.

Let no man deceive you by any means:  for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away [‘the apostasy’] first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition:

Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped;  so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

Remember ye not, that when I was with you, I told you these things?

And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.

For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:  only he who now letteth will let [‘he who now hindereth will hinder’], until he be taken out of the way.

And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders” (II Thessalonians 2:1-9).

Central, Overall Message to the Thessalonians

Paul’s first epistle to Christians forming the Church in Thessalonica had to do with the central message which he had been called to proclaim to Christians throughout the Gentile world.  Paul referred to this message as “my gospel,” “our gospel,” connecting it with “the mystery” which had been revealed to him at the outset of his ministry.  One was part and parcel with the other (I Thessalonians 1:5; cf. Romans 2:16; 16:25; Galatians 1:11-12; Ephesians 3:1-6; Colossians 1:23-28).

In the first three and one-half chapters of I Thessalonians (I Thessalonians 1:1-4:12), Paul dealt extensively with things pertaining to this central message which he had been called to proclaim, which is “Christ proclaimed among you, the hope of glory” (correct textual reading of Colossians 1:27b [note an inseparable connection with “the mystery” in Colossians 1:26-27a]).

Then, beginning toward the end of chapter four and continuing into chapter five (I Thessalonians 4:13-5:10), Paul dealt with the rapture and succeeding events (clearly seen in other related Scriptures to occur before the Tribulation) — showing two types of Christians removed from the earth at the end of the dispensation (faithful and unfaithful [those who had heeded his exhortations and warnings, and those who hadn’t heeded these exhortations and warnings, seen in I Thessalonians 5:1-9]), with events surrounding the judgment seat in view.  And the remainder of the book simply forms Paul’s closing remarks for his first epistle.

Then, in his second epistle to the Thessalonians Paul began at a time following the Tribulation, continuing from his first epistle.

And the Tribulation is not seen in these events concerning Christians both preceding and following the Tribulation, for Christians have nothing to do with the Tribulation.  Rather, the Tribulation is “the time of Jacob’s trouble,” with Israel and the nations in view, not the Church.

The thrust of Paul’s opening remarks in his second epistle, covering all twelve verses of the first chapter (II Thessalonians 1), has to do with the place which Christians will occupy in the future kingdom of Christ, following Christ’s return at the end of the Tribulation.

Some, the faithful, will occupy positions of glory and honor in Christ’s kingdom, seated on the throne with Christ as He exercises power over the nations, realizing the “salvation” spoken of in I Thessalonians 5:9 (II Thessalonians 1:5 and II Thessalonians 1:10-2:1; cf. Revelation 2:26-27; 3:21).

Others, the unfaithful, will occupy places of shame and disgrace and have no part in Christ’s kingdom.  They will not be privileged to ascend the throne with Him as He exercises power over the nations, realizing instead the “wrath” spoken of in I Thessalonians 5:9 (II Thessalonians 1:6-9; cf. Revelation 3:15-17).

Then chapter two (II Thessalonians 2) begins with a continuing statement from the closing verses of chapter one (II Thessalonians 1), remaining within the same subject matter — faithful Christians “gathering together unto him” at the time of His return at the end of the Tribulation. This was Paul’s way of introducing a dissertation to correct erroneous teaching which had found its way into the Church in Thessalonica, purporting to have come from him (II Thessalonians 2:2ff).

(It is commonly taught that the “gathering together unto him” in II Thessalonians 2:1 has to do with the rapture.  And a lesser number of Christians try to see the rapture taught in the third verse of this chapter through a rather strained usage of the Greek word apostasia, using the thought of “departure” for the meaning of the word and then trying to apply it to the Church being removed at the end of the dispensation.

Though “departure” is the idea behind the meaning of the word apostasia [literal meaning, “to stand away from”], attempting to see the rapture in either of these opening verses of the second chapter [II Thessalonians 2:1, 3] is clearly both textually and contextually wrong.  And this can easily be seen by simply reading both in the light of their contexts.

Again, Scripture must be interpreted in the light of Scripture.  A failure to do this, attempting to see the rapture in either of these two verses, has done away with any correct understanding of these verses.  And, as a result, interpretation is negatively affected elsewhere in the chapter.

In the preceding respect, along with not understanding the overall picture beginning with I Thessalonians 1, it is little wonder that Bible students have trouble understanding and identifying that which presently exists in II Thessalonians 2:6-7, preventing the appearance of the man of sin.)

That Preventing the Appearance of Antichrist

Aside from the “falling away” (‘the apostasy’), which, contextually, could only be a concluding work of “the mystery of iniquity” (II Thessalonians 2:3, 7 [KJV]), the passage centers on something unnamed that is preventing the revelation of the man of sin, the son of perdition.  And that being referenced (which, contextually, could only be associated with the apostasy) must be removed, taken out of the way, before this man can be revealed.

An interesting feature of the matter is that Paul didn’t need to identify that being referenced, for those in Thessalonica already knew what he was talking about (II Thessalonians 2:6), needing no explanation.

But the same thing cannot be said of Bible students today.  Most of them have trouble with this, and many of them simply leave it alone, not knowing what to do with it.

(Most Bible students today, seeking to explain what Paul was referencing, which the Thessalonians understood, attempt to see the Holy Spirit as the restrainer.

They do this, to a large extent, on the basis of the Greek text’s usage of both neuter and masculine words to reference the restrainer [neuter in II Thessalonians 2:6, masculine in II Thessalonians 2:7].  And “Spirit” is a neuter word in the Greek text, though the Spirit, at times, is spoken of in a masculine respect [e.g., John 16:7-11].)

But is this the way that those in Thessalonica would have understood the matter?  If so, Why?

Instead of surmising about the matter though there is a much better way to answer these questions, which will, as well, leave us with the same mind-set as those in Thessalonica almost 2,000 years ago.

In this respect, answers are, in reality, quite easy to come by.  Those in Thessalonica understood what Paul was teaching;  but few Bible teachers today do so, which is where the problem lies.

Those in Thessalonica understood the content of Paul’s gospel, seeing the message throughout as a message to the saved relative to the coming kingdom of Christ.

Bible students today, almost without exception, see Paul’s gospel as simply another way to reference the gospel of grace, seeing the message throughout I, II Thessalonians as dealing largely with saved-unsaved issues, intermixed with a message to Christians, though not a message in keeping with the content of Paul’s gospel at all.

Paul’s gospel had to do with a message to those who had already heard and responded to the message of the gospel of the grace of God.  It had to do with a message concerning Christian faithfulness, with a view to the coming kingdom of Christ.  It had to do with the purpose for the present dispensation — the Spirit sent into the world to call out a bride for God’s Son, with a view to the bride ascending the throne with Christ during the coming age.

In the preceding respect, Paul’s gospel, as seen dealt with throughout I Thessalonians, had to do with the antitype of Genesis 24 (with I Thessalonians forming a commentary on this chapter), set between the death of Abraham’s wife (Genesis 23) and Abraham again taking a wife (Genesis 25).

Paul’s gospel had to do with God sending His Spirit to the earth to find and procure a bride for His Son, Jesus (as Abraham, in the type, sent his eldest servant into the far country to find and procure a bride for his son, Isaac).

And the whole of the matter in the antitype occurs exactly as in the type.  The Spirit’s search for and procurement of a bride for God’s Son occurs following Israel being set aside (looked upon as dead [John 11:1ff]) but before God restores and remarries the adulterous wife that He divorced.

In the type, following Abraham’s servant procuring the bride, the servant removed the bride from the far country (accompanied by maidens, riding on evidently the same ten camels in the servant’s possession when he had come into the far country to search for and procure the bride [ten showing completeness all went forth to meet Isaac, as all Christians will go forth to meet Christ]).

And in the antitype, following the Spirit’s procurement of the bride, the Spirit will remove the bride from the earth (remove all Christians, with the bride revealed at the judgment seat).

In the type, Isaac came forth to meet his bride;  and, in the antitype, Jesus will come forth to meet His bride. The preceding is seen in I Thessalonians 4:13ff and can only be an inseparable part of Paul’s gospel.  And when God’s purpose for the present dispensation has been completed and the Spirit removes the bride, there will then be NOTHING to prevent the man of sin from being revealed.

Until this occurs, he CAN’T be revealed;  after this occurs, NOTHING will stand in the way of his being revealed.  And since the whole of the matter is seen in Paul’s first epistle to the Thessalonians, there was no need for any type explanation to those in Thessalonica concerning what Paul meant by something holding back the revelation of this man in II Thessalonians 2:6-7.  He had already told them in his first epistle.

Thus, that which is holding back the revelation of the man of sin is more than just the removal of the Spirit.  It has to do with the Spirit completing His dispensational work and removing the bride (which, as well, clearly shows a pretribulational removal of Christians).

God works with set times, set ways, particular individuals, nations (Israel, and the nations through Israel) through which His plans and purposes are worked out and brought to pass.

Things referenced in II Thessalonians 2:1ff have to do with two different set times in this respect — a removal relative to one, and a revealing relative to the other.

And until these set times arrive, NEITHER can occur;  but when these set times arrive, BOTH must occur.

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The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print:  Antichrist Cannot Appear Until…by Arlen Chitwood.docx

Antichrist Cannot Appear Until… by Arlen Chitwood, Part I, pdf and Part II, pdf  in pamphlet form designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

To website CONTENTS Page.

The Holy Spirit is a person, as Scripture makes clear. As such, He is to be revered as God and serves in perfect unity with Father and Son to lead us in our spiritual lives.

The Holy Spirit is a Person
By Got Questions - The Holy Spirit is a Person

Many people find the doctrine of the Holy Spirit confusing. Is the Holy Spirit a force, a person, or something else? What does the Bible teach?

The Bible provides many ways to help us understand that the Holy Spirit is truly a person—that is, He is a personal being, rather than an impersonal thing. First, every pronoun used in reference to the Spirit is “he” not “it.” The original Greek language of the New Testament is explicit in confirming the person of the Holy Spirit. The word for “Spirit” (pneuma) is neuter and would naturally take neuter pronouns to have grammatical agreement. Yet, in many cases, masculine pronouns are found (e.g., John 15:26; 16:13-14). Grammatically, there is no other way to understand the pronouns of the New Testament related to the Holy Spirit—He is referred to as a “He,” as a person.

Matthew 28:19 teaches us to baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This is a collective reference to one Triune God. Also, we are not to grieve the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). The Spirit can be sinned against (Isaiah 63:10) and lied to (Acts 5:3). We are to obey Him (Acts 10:19–21) and honor Him (Psalm 51:11).

The personhood of the Holy Spirit is also affirmed by His many works. He was personally involved in creation (Genesis 1:2), empowers God’s people (Zechariah 4:6), guides (Romans 8:14), comforts (John 14:26), convicts (John 16:8), teaches (John 16:13), restrains sin (Isaiah 59:19), and gives commands (Acts 8:29). Each of these works requires the involvement of a person rather than a mere force, thing, or idea.

The Holy Spirit’s attributes also point to His personality. The Holy Spirit has life (Romans 8:2), has a will (1 Corinthians 12:11), is omniscient (1 Corinthians 2:10-11), is eternal (Hebrews 9:14), and is omnipresent (Psalm 139:7). A mere force could not possess all of these attributes, but the Holy Spirit does.

And the personhood of the Holy Spirit is affirmed by His role as the third Person of the Godhead. Only a being who is equal to God (Matthew 28:19) and possesses the attributes of omniscience, omnipresence, and eternality could be defined as God.

In Acts 5:3-4, Peter referred to the Holy Spirit as God, stating, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.” Paul likewise referred to the Holy Spirit as God in 2 Corinthians 3:17-18, stating, “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”

The Holy Spirit is a person, as Scripture makes clear. As such, He is to be revered as God and serves in perfect unity with Father and Son to lead us in our spiritual lives.

[The following in this site may be of interest:  Holy Spirit – Ministries and Filling!  and  Being Filled with the Holy Spirit.]

To website CONTENTS Page.

The words in the text, “one will 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.

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

Received or Turned Away "DOES NOT" Refer to the Rapture
Excerpt from Bible One – Arlen Chitwood’s Prophecy on Mount Olivet, Ch. 10
Matthew 24:40-44 is NOT The Rapture
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

"Then there will be two men in the field; one will be taken and one will be left.

"Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one will be left.

"Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming.

"But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into.

"For this reason you also must be ready; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will. (Matthew 24:40-44)

"But keep on the alert at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man." (Luke 21:36)

The words in the text, “one will 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.

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” (Matthew 24:40-41) 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” (Matthew 24:40-41) 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.

Reference to the parallel passage in Luke’s account of the Olivet Discourse shows this same thing:

Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will 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 that 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 you may be counted worthy” and “escape all these things.”

The words, “that you may be counted 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” (Luke 21:34-35).  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).

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 NASB95):

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.”

(Aorist and present tenses in the Greek text are often misunderstood and misused.  In fact, a lot of false doctrine has resulted from a misunderstanding and misuse of these tenses.

The word “aorist” is simply an anglicized Greek word, aoratos, which means “unseen,” “invisible” [aoratos is the word horatos, meaning “to see,” negated by the prefix “a,” making the word aoratos mean just the opposite — “not to see”].  And this word, used relative to “tense” in Greek grammar, refers to the “action” of the verb [unseen action].

Action in the aorist tense is presented simply as occurring, without reference to its progress [which, from the verb itself, cannot be seen].  And this action, seen contextually, can be very linear [continuous, occurring over time] or punctiliar** [occurring at one or more points in time].

[A misunderstanding and misuse of the aorist tense usually occurs by attempting to see what the meaning of the name of the tense itself clearly states can’t be seen — action occurring, which is invariably and erroneously viewed as punctiliar.

This action is represented on paper [in grammar books] by a dot, simply because it can’t be seen to describe the type of action (whether linear or punctiliar).  And this dot is what often misleads people, thinking that punctiliar action is being described by the dot, which isn’t the case at all.]

On the other hand, the present tense, where action is seen, serves to show both linear and punctiliar action.  The general rule is that if punctiliar action is not shown by the context, then linear action is to be understood.

For example, “believes” in John 3:15-16 is the translation of a present participle in the Greek text; and, except for the context [John 3:14], the word in both verses would be understood in a linear respect.  The context though shows that both words are to be understood as punctiliar i.e., simply believe at a point in time, not keep on believing [it was look and live in the type (John 3:14), and it is, as well (it cannot be any other way) look and live in the antitype (John 3:15-16)].

Then note “believes” in Romans 1:16, also the translation of a present participle in the Greek text.  But this time the context doesn’t show that the present tense is to be understood any way other than linear.  Thus, the thought presented in the verse would be to keep on believing, keep on exercising faith [note, contextually, that this verse has nothing to do with eternal salvation; rather, it has to do with belief, faith, exercised by those who are already saved].)

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).

The thought is presented another way in Psalms 24:3-4:

Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD? Or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor sworn deceitfully.

Psalm chapter twenty-four is a Messianic Psalm; and the expression, “to stand before the Son of Man” in Luke 21:36, is Messianic as well.  Ascendingthe hill [referring to the ‘kingdom’;  note Psalms 2:6] of the Lord” or standing “before the Son of Man” are reserved for “associates” or “companions” who will rule as co-heirs with Christ (cf. Hebrews 1:9; 3:1, 14;  “fellows” [Hebrews 1:9, KJV] and “partakers” [Hebrews 3:1, 14] are translations of the same Greek word [metochoi], which could be better rendered, “associates” or “companions”).

(A similar statement to that which is seen in Luke 21:36 is seen in God’s promise to those in the Church in Philadelphia, in Revelation 3:10 — “I also will keep you from the hour of trial.”

For information on this verse (Revelation 3:10), refer to Chapter 10, “A Pillar, A City,” in the author’s book, Judgment Seat of Christ BOOK, in this site.)

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The following Word Document is SAFE to open and print:  Received or Turned Away by Arlen Chitwood.docx

To website CONTENTS Page.

All judgments preceding the Millennium have the kingdom in view.  But the wording of Matthew 25:41, 46 — those on Christ’s left hand going away into “everlasting punishment,” in “everlasting fire”; or those on His right hand entering into “eternal life” — would appear to clearly teach something different.  Such though is not the case at all.

SAVED GENTILES ON BOTH HIS RIGHT & LEFT HANDS (Title by Pat)
From Prophecy on Mount Olivet 
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

Chapter 23

THOSE ON HIS RIGHT HAND

Then the King will say to those on His right hand, “Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in;

I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.”

Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, “Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink?

When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You?

Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?”

And the King will answer and say to them, “Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.” (Matthew 25:34-40)

When Christ returns to the earth it will be as “King of kings and Lord of lords.”  Christ, at His first appearance, at the time of His incarnation, was born “king of the Jews” (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:2); and He will return to exercise that position at His second appearance (Revelation 19:11-16).

Completely unlike His first appearance — “in the likeness of sinful flesh [without the covering of Glory that man had lost in Eden 4,000 years earlier]” (Genesis 3:7; Romans 8:3) — Christ will reappear with a body enswathed in Glory, clothed in regal garments, with many diadems on His head (the type crown showing regality); He will reappear as “the Lion of the tribe of Judah,” not as “the Lamb of God”;  He will reappear as the rightful King, as “He judges and makes war,” not as One to be ridiculed and arrayed as a mock King by existing powers (cf. Psalm 2:1-12; 24:1-10; 110:1-7; Matthew 27:27-31; Luke 24:26; John 1:36; Revelation 5:5-7; 19:11-16).

Christ will not only reappear as “King” but He will have in His possession the kingdom that He had gone away to receive.  Christ’s reappearance after this fashion will mark the beginning of climactic events pertaining to God’s plans and purposes, which date back in time to the period prior to man’s existence upon earth.

In Scripture, the enacting of God’s plans and purposes as they pertain to man are looked upon as occurring at two different times preceding man’s creation — “before the foundation of the world,” and “from the foundation of the world” (cf. Matthew 13:35; 25:34; Luke 11:50; John 17:24; Ephesians 1:4; Hebrews 4:3; 1 Peter 1:20; Revelation 13:8; 17:8).

The word “foundation” is the translation of the Greek word, katabole, a compound word which literally means “to cast down” or “to throw down” (kata means “down,” and bole means “to cast” or “to throw”).  The manner in which this word is used in a general sense in the expression, “foundation of the world,” could describe God’s past act of casting or throwing down the world (i.e., creating the world) out in space.

However, katabole appears to be used in a more specific sense in Scripture, referring to God’s subsequent act of restoring the ruined creation in Genesis 1:2bff rather than His initial act of creating the earth in Genesis 1:1.  In this respect, matters mentioned in the verses where this expression is used would refer to God’s actions regarding His Son and man at two different times in history, following the creation of the heavens and the earth:

1) “Before [Greek: pro] the foundation of the world” (before the restoration of the ruined creation, in eternity past, which could be any time between the creation [Genesis 1:1] and the restoration of the ruined creation [Genesis 1:2bff]).

2) “From [Greek: apo] the foundation of the world” (the time of the restoration of the ruined creation [Genesis 1:2bff], when God began counting 7,000 years of time in relation to His Son and man as it pertained to regality and this earth).

Thus, God’s plans and purposes as they pertain to His Son and man had their beginning in eternity past.  The kingdom prepared for saved Gentiles “from the foundation of the world” in Matthew 25:34 had been planned in the eternal council chambers of God at a time “before the foundation of the world” (Ephesians 1:4-10).  Prior to God’s restorative work delineated in Genesis 1:2bff, in eternity past, the ages were planned around the preordained activity of the Son; and the Messianic Era is the climactic age in a series of ages.

(At least three ages would be in view — one pre-Adamic and two post-Adamic.

At least one age [possible more] would have preceded man’s creation.  During this time, Satan was placed as ruler over a newly created earth, his fall occurred, and the subsequent ruin of his kingdom followed [Genesis 1:1-2a; Isaiah 14:12-14; Ezekiel 28:14-15].

Then one age covers Man’s 6,000-year Day, beginning with the restoration of the ruined earth for man and man’s subsequent creation on the sixth day [the one brought forth to replace the incumbent ruler, Satan].

Man’s fall though delayed, for 6,000 years, the purpose for man’s creation being realized, during which time God is performing a redemptive work relative to man [in order that man might one day realize the purpose for his creation in the beginning].

Then, the last age in this succession of ages is the 1,000-year Messianic Era, during which time God’s plans and purposes for His Son and for man will be brought to fruition, which is the goal seen realized at the termination of all three sections of the Olivet Discourse.

For additional information on “ages,” particularly as distinguished from “dispensations,” refer to Ages and Dispensations and Dispensations As Distinguished from “Ages” in this site.)

God’s preordained activity as it pertains to the ages relating to man, along with the earth, is referred to in Ephesians 3:11 and Hebrews 1:2, and the respective contexts of these two verses leave no room to question that which is in view.  Both point to the same thing — a succession of ages, terminating with an age in which the “restoration of all things” will occur (Acts 3:21; cf. Acts 1:6).

Ephesians 3:11 should literally read,

According to a plan of the ages which He formed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And Hebrews 1:2 should literally read,

Has in these last days spoken to us in the person of His Son, whom He has appointed Heir of all things, through whom also He made the ages [formed the ages after a pattern in accord with the pre-planned activity of the Son within these ages]” (cf. John 1:3; Colossians 1:16-18).

Verses leading into Ephesians 3:11 have to do with the mystery revealed to Paul and the purpose for the present dispensation; and verses following Hebrews 1:2 have to do with God bringing His Son into the inhabited world once again, but this time to exercise the rights of primogeniture as His firstborn Son.

The whole of Scripture moves toward a climactic age in which a new order of Sons will rule the earth for the express purpose of bringing all things under subjection to Christ, anticipating the eternal ages beyond (Romans 8:19; 1 Corinthians 15:24-28).  This plan was conceived and enacted “before the foundation of the world,” and the kingdom — the central focus of the plan — was prepared “from the foundation of the world.”

ORDER AND BASIS OF JUDGMENT

The Gentile section of the Olivet Discourse is normally looked upon by premillennial students of the Word as pertaining to a general judgment of all the Gentiles surviving the Tribulation — both saved and unsaved, living at the time Christ returns — with the works of those being judged revealing their saved or unsaved status.  A judgment of this nature though is not what is taught either in this text or anywhere else in Scripture.  Such a judgment would be completely out of line with the teaching of Scripture not only on salvation itself but on the timing and basis of all future judgments pertaining to man.

Salvation is by “grace through faith,” and man’s works can have no part in the matter. Salvation is based entirely on the finished work of Christ, and man must be completely passive.  Man cannot perform works to be saved, to stay saved, or to show that he has been saved.  If he could do any one of these three, then works would have entered into an area where works cannot exist, and salvation would cease to be by grace through faith (Romans 11:6).

Insofar as judgment is concerned, neither can “a general judgment” exist within the framework of that which Scripture reveals.  “The saved” must always be judged first (1 Peter 4:17), requiring a separation of the saved from the unsaved preceding judgment.  A general judgment — both the saved and the unsaved called before Christ at the same time to be judged — would violate this principle.

Then again, future judgments in Scripture can have nothing whatsoever to do with eternal salvation or eternal damnation.  One’s eternal destiny will always be a settled, closed matter before the person stands in the presence of Christ to be judged at a future date, with judgment relative to one’s acceptance or rejection of Christ having already occurred.

John 3:18 makes this very clear:

He who believes in Him is not condemned [judged]; but he who does not believe is condemned [judged] already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

The issue surrounding one’s eternal destiny can never be raised at any future judgment, for judgment relative to this matter will have already occurred in past time.  God judged sin in the person of His Son at Calvary, and this judgment affects both the believer and the unbeliever in the same passive sense.

It is not possible for a believer to ever be brought into judgment where issues surrounding his eternal destiny come into view.  Sin has already been judged vicariously in God’s Son, and God is satisfied.  The believer possesses the imputed righteousness of Christ (Romans 5:15-18; 2 Corinthians 5:21), and the penalty for sin has already been paid on his behalf (Romans 6:23).

Nor can the unbeliever, as well, ever appear in a future judgment where issues involve his eternal destiny.  Though he is completely outside the efficacy of Christ’s vicarious act, judgment relative to the matter at hand (judgment upon sin at Calvary) has already occurred.  This is why John 3:18 clearly places the judgment of the unbeliever in past time.  Everything is based on Christ’s past, completed work and God’s judgment of sin within the scope of this completed work.

An unbeliever is looked upon within the framework of the entire matter in the same passive sense that the believer is viewed.  A vicarious judgment for sin occurred in past time; and even though the unbeliever is outside the scope of this vicarious act, he is looked upon as having already been judged since the judgment for sin has already occurred.

To bring any individual — saved or unsaved — into judgment at a future date where even one issue involves matters surrounding his eternal destiny would be to judge once again that which God has already judged.  Thus, every future judgment — pertaining to the saved and the unsaved alike — can only involve issues completely separate from one’s eternal salvation or eternal damnation.

INHERITING THE KINGDOM

The key word to acquire a proper understanding of the judgment of living Gentiles when Christ returns is the word “inherit.”  Those Gentiles placed at Christ’s right hand (the hand of “power,” symbolic of strength and force [Genesis 48:17-19]) and dealt with first are said to inherit a kingdom prepared for them “from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34).

The issue at hand in Christ’s judgment of saved Gentiles (all, both those placed at His right hand and those placed at His left hand) at the end of the Tribulation is clearly inheritance, not eternal life.

Gentiles placed at both His right hand and His left hand will be judged on the basis of “works” relative to realizing or being rejected for an inheritance in the kingdom.  And the reason they can be judged in this manner is because they will have already been judged on the basis of the work of Another — on the basis of Christ’s finished work at Calvary.

1)  INHERITANCE AND FAMILY RELATIONSHIP

In the Scriptural framework, inheritance is always a family matter.  In the Old Testament, “sons” were first in line to receive the inheritance, with daughters next.  If there were no sons or daughters in the immediate family, the inheritance passed to the nearest family member or members designated by the law of inheritance (Numbers 27:8-11).

In the New Testament, insofar as Christ, Israel, and the Church are concerned, it is “Sons” alone that are in view, more specifically firstborn Sons.  It is God’s firstborn Sons who will come into possession of the inheritance and exercise the rights of primogeniture.  And these rights will begin to be exercised in the Messianic Era by and through God’s firstborn Sons ruling over the Gentile nations.

Firstborn Sons hold their positions either through relationship (Jesus and His relationship to the Father — God’s only begotten firstborn Son) or adoption (Israel and the Church [Israel was adopted in time past, and the Church is yet to be adopted]); and firstborn Sons hold (or, as in the case of the Church, will hold) their respective positions in view of one day exercising power and authority following their coming into possession of the awaiting inheritance.

Inheritance within the kingdom to be realized by saved Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation though has nothing to do with exercising the rights of the firstborn.  Nothing is said in Scripture about God adopting Gentile nations, as He adopted Israel (or as He will adopt the Church).  National adoption among the nations of the earth belongs to Israel alone (Romans 9:4).

Thus, inheritance as it pertains to firstborn Sons and inheritance as it pertains to the saved Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation would have to be looked upon in different respects.  Exactly what position saved Gentiles will occupy in the kingdom is unrevealed.  They are said to inherit the kingdom and reign with Christ (cf. Matthew 25:34; Revelation 20:4), though evidently not as firstborn sons.

The nations of the earth coming out of the Tribulation and populating the millennial earth will be ruled by, reached with God’s message, and blessed through Israel.  And Gentiles inheriting the kingdom at the beginning may very well have a part, under Israel, ruling and reaching the nations with God’s message.

Then again, the Gentiles inheriting the kingdom could occupy a similar regal place on earth under Christ and His co-heirs as they rule the nations from the heavens.

The matter though is unrevealed.  And the preceding has been set forth only as possibility for thought, nothing more.

2)  INHERITANCE AND SALVATION

Contrary to what is often taught, the word “inheritance” never appears in Scripture as a synonym for the salvation that we presently possessEternal life is one thing, and inheritance is something entirely different; and confusion abounds when proper distinctions are not made.

The offer of “eternal life” is reserved for those outside the family; and the offer of “an inheritance” is reserved for those within the family (“. . . if children, then heirs . . . .” [Romans 8:17]).  One is a free gift, but the other requires merit.  One is non-forfeitable, for it is based on the finished work of Christ; but the other can be forfeited, for it is based on actions of the individual family members.

Consequently, inheritance in Scripture is connected with eternal life only to the extent that one has to first be in possession of eternal life before he can be in line to receive the inheritance.

There is though a salvation that is inherited (note that the word “salvation” is used in a much broader sense in Scripture than just a reference to eternal life [as is the word “gospel,” as well]).

For Christians, salvation in connection with inheritance has to do with exercising the rights of the firstborn during the coming age.  It has to do with the saving of the soul, the saving of the life (cf. Matthew 16:24-27; Hebrews 1:14-2:5; 10:35-39; 1 Peter 1:9-11).  Coming into possession of this salvation will be synonymous with coming into possession of an inheritance in the kingdom as Sovereigns.

An inheritance for saved Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation though, as previously noted, will be a different matter.  There is nothing in Scripture that would connect their inheritance with sonship and positions of sovereignty of a nature sonship would portend; nor is their inheritance referred to in Scripture in the sense of a salvation or deliverance, as is the Christians’ inheritance.

Saved Gentiles living at the time Christ returns, who enter into an inheritance in the kingdom, will have endured to the end of the Tribulation and be “saved [physically delivered]” out of that period (Matthew 24:13-14).  They will then realize an inheritance of some unrevealed type in the kingdom.

3)  INHERITANCE AND MERIT

Matthew 25:34-40 clearly attests to the fact that inheritance is based on the righteous acts of individuals in the family (works of the redeemed) rather than the righteous act of the Head of the family (the finished work of Christ on Calvary, allowing redeemed individuals to occupy a place in the family).  And this same teaching regarding “inheritance” is covered elsewhere in Scripture by showing the possibility that one’s inheritance can be forfeited by improper conduct, seen in the parables in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24:40-25:30) through a failure of household servants to properly carry out the responsibility entrusted to them by the Householder during His time of absence.

As in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse, both positive and negative aspects of the matter are dealt with in the Gentile section of the Discourse.  The positive side is seen by and through Christ’s dealings with those on His right hand, and the negative side is seen by and through His dealings with those on His left hand.

But, again, detail of the nature seen in Christ’s prior dealings with Christians is not seen in His dealings with the Gentiles in Matthew 25:31-46.  One can rest assured though that within God’s perfect justice and righteousness there will always be a just recompense in His Son’s judgmental dealings with mankind — within both positive and negative aspects of these dealings — for Christians on the one hand and saved Gentiles on the other.

Scripture abounds with information concerning Christ’s dealings with Christians in that coming day; particularly with warnings concerning that which awaits household servants who fail in their responsibility to properly handle that which the Householder entrusted to them during His time of absence.

Failure in this realm will result in a forfeiture of the rights belonging to firstborn sons.  Such Christians will have forfeited their birthrights and thus the inheritance belonging to the firstborn.

In this respect, Scripture provides two classic examples of individuals who forfeited the rights belonging to the firstborn and consequently forfeited their inheritances.  One example can be seen in the actions of Esau, and the other in the actions of Reuben.

And these things occurred “as examples [‘types’]”; and they have been recorded “for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come” (1 Corinthians 10:6, 11).

These events occurred within God’s sovereign control of all things in order that He might have these accounts to draw upon to teach Christians deep things within the mystery revealed to Paul concerning the inheritance awaiting firstborn sons.

Esau, Isaac’s firstborn, forfeited his birthright to satisfy a fleshly gratification.  He sold his birthright for a single meal (Genesis 25:27-34).  When it came time for the father to bestow his blessing on the firstborn, Jacob was the one who received the blessing, not Esau.  Esau had forfeited these rights; and once forfeited, they were irretrievable.

After Isaac had blessed Jacob as firstborn, Esau tried to get his father to change his mind and bless him as well.  But his efforts were to no avail.  The father’s blessing had already been bestowed upon Jacob, and the forfeited rights of the firstborn were gone forever (Genesis 27:26ff; Hebrews 12:14-17).

Then, a forfeiture of these same rights is seen in events surrounding Jacob’s firstborn son.  Reuben, Jacob’s firstborn, was in direct line to inherit the rights of primogeniture; but because of one grave sin committed during his life, Reuben forfeited these rights.  Reuben’s sin, resulting in the forfeiture of his birthright, was sexual impropriety of a nature that dishonored and shamed his father:

. . . Reuben went and lay with Bilhah his father’s concubine; and Israel heard about it . . . . (Genesis 35:22b)

As a consequence, Reuben’s birthright was divided among three of his brothers.

The tribal rulership was bestowed upon “Judah,” the priestly office was bestowed upon “Levi,” and the double portion of the father’s estate was given to “Joseph.”

The tribe of “Judah” became heir to the kingly line, the tribe of “Levi” became heir to the priestly line, and the tribe of “Joseph” inherited the double portion, realized through Joseph’s two sons (Ephraim and Manasseh), who each received a full inheritance (1 Chronicles 5:1-2).

The preceding reveals the proper Scriptural distinctions between being a member of the family on the one hand and being in line to receive an inheritance on the other.  Though Esau and Reuben forfeited their inheritances, they remained sons within the family.

And it is the same for a Christian.  Becoming a member of the family, being born from above, places one in a position to inherit.  The Christian as a child of God is an “heir”; and the Christian as a son is awaiting the “adoption” in order to realize the inheritance (Romans 8:14-23).

Christians have been saved for the purpose of one day exercising the rights of the firstborn, seated on the throne with Christ.  However, as in the cases of Esau and Reuben (historical accounts forming types, set forth as warnings for Christians), these rights can be forfeited; but also, as in the cases of Esau and Reuben, such a forfeiture can produce no change in one’s family relationship.

Understanding these distinctions will allow one to see exactly what is in view when Christ calls attention to entering into an inheritance because of merit at the time He judges saved Gentiles following His return.  Note that Christ will say to these Gentiles,

“Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34). 

And this will be said because of works performed following their salvation (Matthew 25:34-36).  They will have merited this right because of their previous positive treatment of Christ’s brethren (Matthew 25:40).

Thus, the works of these saved Gentiles are clearly associated with an inheritance in the kingdom, not with eternal life — an impossibility.  To teach, as many do, that Gentiles appearing before Christ in Matthew 25:31ff will show by either their works or their lack of works a saved or unsaved status not only does violence to biblical teachings concerning salvation by grace but it completely obscures that which is being taught in Matthew 25:31-46.

Good works or a lack of such works can never have anything to do with showing one’s saved or unsaved status.  Man’s works, after any fashion, either before or after a person is saved, can never enter into the realm of One’s eternal salvation.  The finished work of Christ alone is seen in this realm.

Christians appearing before the Judgment Seat of Christ will be judged on the basis of works in relation to an inheritance in the kingdom; and saved Gentiles appearing before Christ following His return will be judged after this same fashion in relation to the same thing.  The issue of one’s eternal destiny can occupy no place in either one of these judgments or in any other future judgment.

CHRIST’S BRETHREN

Gentiles being judged at the time of Christ’s return will be individuals from the nations of the earth saved during the immediately preceding Tribulation.  They will have been saved mainly as a result of the ministry of the 144,000 Jewish evangelists called forth by God to proclaim the “gospel of the kingdom” to the nations of the earth during the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation.  These Gentiles will also be those who escaped the wrath of Antichrist as he sought their destruction, along with the destruction of Israel.

Satan’s final, climactic effort to thwart God’s plans and purposes, established in eternity past, “before the foundation of the world,” will be carried out through Antichrist.  Satan, following his being cast out of the heavenly realm from which he presently reigns, will give to a man (the Antichrist, the beast — actually, his son [Genesis 3:15]) “his power, his throne, and great authority.”  He will give to Antichrist that which he previously offered to Christ (cf. Luke 4:5-6; Revelation 13:2).

And through this man, seated upon his throne, Satan will do everything within his power to prevent a future manifestation of the kingdom of Christ.  In this respect, he will turn his attention toward both the Sovereigns (God’s firstborn Sons, with his wrath vented particularly against Israel during the Tribulation) and those having anything to do with any of the Sovereigns (saved Gentiles befriending Israel during those days, destined to realize an inheritance in the kingdom as well), for man inheriting the kingdom will mean an end to Satan’s rule.

The book of Revelation, from chapter six through the opening verses in chapter nineteen, relates events that will occur on earth during the seven-year Tribulation.  This portion of Scripture, though relating some events that will occur during the first three and one-half years of this period, is given over almost entirely to events beginning in the middle of the Tribulation and extending throughout the last three and one-half years, followed by the return of Christ at the end of the Tribulation.  Consequently, this is the section of Scripture to which one must go in order to properly understand certain things about Christ’s judgment of the Gentiles on the basis of their activity during the Tribulation.

The most instructive portions of Scripture in this respect are Revelation chapters seven, twelve, and fourteen.  These chapters deal with the 144,000 Jewish evangelists who will proclaim the gospel of the kingdom throughout the world during the Tribulation, with the innumerable multitude of Gentiles who will be saved as a result of their ministry, and with Satan’s efforts to prevent or hinder everything associated with their ministry.

(Ref. Bible One - Arlen Chitwood's Prophecy on Mount Olivet, Ch. 2 and Ch. 3, where events in Revelation 7; 12; 14 are discussed.  Also, for a fuller discussion see A Woman, a Dragon, a Male Child, and The One Hundred Forty-four Thousand in this site.)

Satan and his angels, immediately following their being cast out of the heavens onto the earth near the middle of the Tribulation, will direct their attention toward Israel.  The reason given in Scripture is because Israel, at that time, will be about to bring forth the 144,000 evangels (a first-fruit of the nation [Revelation 14:4]), who will carry the message of salvation and the coming kingdom to the Gentiles throughout the earth during the last half of the Tribulation; and Satan will seek to destroy the 144,000 as soon as they appear, seeking to prevent the proclamation of this message (Revelation 12:4).

His efforts though will be in vain.  The 144,000, after they are brought forth, will be supernaturally removed from the earth to escape Satan’s wrath (this is the reason they are seen in heaven in Revelation 14:1-5) and shortly thereafter will be sent back to the earth to deliver their message during the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation (Revelation 12:5, 17).

Satan, immediately following the removal of the 144,000 into heaven, will then vent his wrath upon the nation of Israel.  God though will supernaturally intervene and prepare (or will have already prepared) a place in “the wilderness [the mountainous terrain of the land of Israel]” for the Jewish people, to which a remnant will flee, where they will remain safe from Satan’s wrath for the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation (Revelation 12:13-16).

Elsewhere in the world, anti-Semitism will become rampant.  Jews will come under the sentence of death, and conditions will deteriorate far beyond those seen in Europe during the years 1939-1945.  Many Jews though, as in Europe during the World War II years, will survive this time.  These are the ones who will be re-gathered “from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” by angels at the time Christ returns.  And the shortening of the days of the Tribulation will occur first and foremost for these particular Jews (Matthew 24:22, 31).

The Israeli nation presently existing in the Middle East, from which the remnant fleeing into the mountainous terrain of the land will come (cf. Matthew 24:16; Revelation 12:6, 14), comprises only a part of world Jewry (about two-fifths).  The majority of Jews reside outside the land today, and the majority will probably still be outside the land when Antichrist appears.  This segment of Jewry will remain scattered throughout the world during the Tribulation, with those Jews presently in the land (approaching 6,000,000 today) being uprooted in the middle of the Tribulation and scattered out among them (save for the remnant which will escape to a specially prepared place in the land that God will have prepared for them).

And the 144,000 Jewish evangelists will proclaim their message to Gentiles throughout the world where Jews presently reside and where Jews in the land of Israel will be driven when Antichrist enters with his armies in the middle of the Tribulation (Matthew 24:14; Mark 13:10).

“Christ’s brethren” in Matthew 25:40, 45 are the Jewish people (Genesis 37:14, 16-17; 45:1-4); and the treatment extended to Christ’s brethren by Gentiles would evidently refer to treatment extended to Jews other than the remnant escaping into the mountainous terrain of the land of Israel.  This remnant of Jews will be in a specially prepared place and be supernaturally protected by God Himself.

The situation for Jews scattered throughout the earth in that day can only be viewed as grave beyond description.  They will be hunted, killed, and sold as slaves throughout the Gentile world (Isaiah 14:2; Joel 3:7; Matthew 24:9); and numerous saved Gentiles worldwide will befriend these Jews, along with befriending the 144,000 Jewish evangelists proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom.

The mark of the beast will be given during this period, and no one will be able to “buy or sell” apart from having received this mark.  But those receiving the mark will find themselves under a far greater condemnation (Revelation 13:15-17; 14:9-12).

Two-thirds of the Jews throughout the earth will die during this time, along with an innumerable host of saved Gentiles (Zechariah 13:8; Revelation 7:9-17).  Saved Gentiles befriending both saved and unsaved Jews being hunted and killed will undoubtedly find themselves in similar straits as well (e.g., note that which awaited those aiding Jews during WWII in Europe).  This will be a time when matters surrounding saved people befriending Christ’s brethren will be quite different than they are today.

(According to present figures regarding the world’s Jewish population, about twice as many Jews will be slain in less than half the time as were slain in Europe by the Third Reich during the years 1939-1945 [they will be slain during the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation, but note a shortening of these days for the sake of the Jewish people (Matthew 24:22)].

The Third Reich had trouble disposing of 6,000,000 Jewish bodies over the space of about seven years, building giant crematoriums and burying others together in common, mass graves.  Far more horrific conditions can only exist in this one realm alone during the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation.)

We’re really not given details concerning how Gentiles under the sentence of death who cannot purchase food or trade after any other fashion in the commercial world will be in a position to befriend Jewish people in similar straits.  The prevalence of anti-Semitism during this period — placing Jews in an altogether different position than Gentiles — would possibly provide one explanation (ref. “Anti-Semitism,” in Bible One - Arlen Chitwood's Prophecy on Mount Olivet, Appendix 1 in this site).

For a segment of Jewry, the type of ministry that the 144,000 Jewish evangelists will have would possibly provide other thoughts surrounding the problems Gentiles will have befriending Jews in that day.  These Jewish evangels will be in the public eye and have to travel about; and in the course of their travels they will have to acquire food and lodging, at times in unfamiliar surroundings. 

They will be carrying on a ministry during extremely difficult times — times unlike anything ever seen in man’s 6,000-year history; and God will use saved Gentiles (saved as a result of the ministry of the Jewish evangels), occupying a different position relative to the public, to befriend, minister to, these Jews in order to insure the worldwide proclamation of their message.

One though does not need to understand all the details of the preceding matter.  It falls our lot only to believe that which God has revealed.  The facts as given clearly state that saved Gentiles will befriend, minister to, Jews during the Tribulation; other saved Gentiles though will not do so.  And at the time of Christ’s return all of these Gentiles will be judged on the basis of their prior treatment of the Jewish people, with a view to an inheritance in the kingdom.

Genesis 12:3a states,

I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you . . . .

And this statement concerning Abraham and his descendants through Isaac and Jacob, which God gave Abraham 4,000 years ago and, through His Spirit, moved Moses to record 3,500 years ago, sets forth the fundamental principle in Scripture that will govern the judgment of saved Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation.

They will be blessed because they had been a blessing to the Jewish people.  And, further, it will be revealed to them that the treatment that they extended to “Christ’s brethren” was actually treatment extended to Christ Himself, for Christ, as well, is a descendant of Abraham.  In this respect, Christ will say to saved Gentiles in that day,

“Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these My brethren, you have done it to Me.”

This is a statement resting on an unchangeable principle that is no less true today than it will be in that coming day.

Chapter 24

THOSE ON HIS LEFT HAND

Then He will also say to those on the left hand, “Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:

for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink;

I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.”

Then they also will answer Him, saying, “Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?”

Then He will answer them, saying, “Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.”

And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life. (Matthew 25:41-46)

Contrary to common, widespread interpretative views on Matthew 25:31-46, the only time Christ will deal with unsaved Gentiles when He returns to the earth — preceding His actual 1,000-year reign over the earth, with His co-heirs — will be when He treads the winepress at what is commonly called the battle of Armageddon.  Christ’s judgment of Gentiles, as seen at the end of the Olivet Discourse, when He returns and sits on the throne of His Glory, will be with saved Gentiles alone, not with both saved and unsaved Gentiles.

And this judgment, as any other judgment at this time, will be with the kingdom in view.  This judgment, as any of the other judgments, will have to do with either realizing an inheritance in the kingdom or being rejected for an inheritance in the kingdom.  And the basis of this judgment will be the previous actions of those being judged, whether they ministered or didn’t minister to Christ’s brethren, the Jewish people, during the Tribulation.

Those having ministered to the Jewish people during the previous Tribulation will realize an inheritance in the kingdom; those who didn’t minister to the Jewish people during the previous Tribulation though will be turned away, rejected for an inheritance.

In this respect, the matter will be very similar to that which is seen in Christ’s previous dealings with Christians at His judgment seat, as seen in the four parables covering the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24:40-25:30).

In the first of these four parables, one is received alongside, and another is turned away.  And receiving alongside or being turned away is seen, in a subsequent parable, to be with a view to the kingdom that the Nobleman had gone away to receive (Luke 19:12).

The same thing is seen in the judgment of saved Gentiles.  The ones on His right hand will be received in the same manner as seen in the previous parable (actually, all four previous parables, all covering different facets of the same thing) — received alongside;  and the ones on His left hand will be turned away, as also seen in this parable (again, in all four parables).

Being received or being turned away in this manner has to do with the same thing previously seen in these parables.  It has to do with an inheritance in the kingdom, which will be realized by some and not realized by others.

The Kingdom in View

Everything surrounding Christ’s return is seen having to do with the kingdom that He had gone away to receive.  When Christ returns, between the time His feet touch the Mount of Olives and the time He and His co-heirs ascend the throne and reign (Zechariah 14:4, 9), numerous things, of necessity, will have to occur.

At the time Christ returns, Satan will still be in power, with Antichrist seated on His throne; an unconverted Israel, which Satan will still be seeking to destroy, will still be scattered among the nations; and the Gentiles, saved mainly as a result of the ministry of the 144,000 Jewish evangels, who survived the Tribulation, will still be scattered throughout the nations of the earth as well.

Christ will deal with Israel first, relative to conversion, repentance, and restoration to the land, as well as calling the nation before Him in Judgment; and everything will be with a view to the kingdom.

Then the incumbent powers must be removed from their positions, which is what is seen in Revelation 19:17-20:3 (allowing Christ and His co-heirs to take the scepter and reign).  The beast and false prophet will be dealt with first (Revelation 19:20), the armies of the beast (led by the kings of the earth [Revelation 19:21]) will then be dealt with, and then Satan himself (which can only include his angels as well) will be dealt with (Revelation 20:1-3).

Christ will then deal with the saved Gentiles, both those surviving the Tribulation in Matthew 25:31-46 and those having been slain during the Tribulation (Revelation 7:9-17; 20:4-6); and His dealings with these Gentiles, as His dealings with the Jews, will be with a view to the kingdom.

In short, everything surrounding Christ’s return will have one thing at the forefront: the kingdom that He had gone away to receive.

Gentile nations, comprised of unsaved Gentiles surviving the judgments of the Tribulation, will enter into the Millennium and populate the millennial earth.  And not only will they enter into this time in natural bodies, capable of procreation, but atmospheric conditions will once again be of a nature that man can, as in the antediluvian world of Noah’s day, live for hundreds of years, even for the entire duration of the Millennium, in a natural body (ref. Bible One - Arlen Chitwood's Prophecy on Mount Olivet, Ch. 9).  Thus, the population of the earth, over time, can only increase, evidently dramatically.

(The common thought and teaching that only saved Gentiles will enter into the Millennium is based on a misunderstanding of Matthew 25:31-46, attempting to make this section of Scripture teach a judgment of all the Gentiles at the time of Christ’s return, both the saved and the unsaved.

This though is not what Matthew 25:31-46 or any other section of Scripture teaches.  The millennial earth, at the very beginning, will evidently be populated by unsaved Gentiles, forming nations, occupying different geographical locations throughout the earth.)

Israel will be placed at the head of the nations here on earth, with the Jewish people realizing their calling.  A converted Jewish nation will not only rule over the Gentile nations but will send the evangels out, worldwide, to reach the Gentiles with God’s message; and God will bless the nations through Israel (Genesis 12:1-3; Isaiah 43:7-11; Jonah 1:2ff).

(As the 144,000 of Revelation 7; 12; 14 began carrying God’s message to Gentiles worldwide during the last half of the Tribulation [forming a first-fruit of the nation], the entire nation will continue this task during the Millennium [forming the main harvest].)

Then, in the heavens, Christ and His co-heirs will rule the nations as well, which will evidently be through representatives here on earth.  And this could possibly be accomplished through saved Gentiles, those seen on Christ’s right hand in Matthew 25:34-40, who realize an inheritance in the kingdom.

(The present kingdom under Satan is structured after the preceding fashion.  Powerful angels in Satan’s kingdom rule from a heavenly sphere through men in corresponding positions of power here on earth [Daniel 10:12-20].  In this passage from Daniel, there is both a “prince of the kingdom of Persia” and “kings of Persia” [evidently lesser rulers under the prince] in the heavens, which would correspond to both the main ruler and lesser rulers under him who ruled over the Persian kingdom here on earth.

Governmental power and authority originates in the heavens — “Heaven rules [KJV: “the heavens do rule]” [Daniel 4:26b] — and progresses from rulers in the heavens through rulers on the earth.  Governmental powers throughout the Gentile nations possess corresponding governmental powers in Satan’s kingdom in the heavens in this fashion.  Powers in the heavens rule through these corresponding powers on the earth.  Or, to turn that around, the powers on earth govern under these corresponding powers in the heavens.

This is the manner in which the government of the earth is presently structured, which is also the same manner in which the government of the earth — all of the Gentile nations — will be structured yet future, though under Christ and His co-heirs rather than Satan and his angels.

There is one exception to the preceding — the government of the nation of Israel, for Israel isnot reckoning itself among the nations” [Numbers 23:9].  Israel, though possessing a government of the same type, with powers in the heavens ruling through powers on earth [it must, for “the heavens do rule”], rules separate from powers in Satan’s kingdom.  Israel’s ruling angel in this respect is Michael, separate from Satan’s kingdom [Daniel 10:21].

And, as previously noted, the coming kingdom of Christ can only be established after the same fashion, with Christ and His co-heirs ruling from heavenly places through corresponding powers among the nations here on earth.  This though would be over the Gentile nations alone [note that overcoming Christians have been promised power over the nations, not over Israel (Revelation 2:26-27)].

The twelve apostles would seem to be the lone exception, having been promised power over the twelve tribes of Israel [Matthew 19:27-29].  And, since other rulers over Israel will be needed in the heavenly sphere of the kingdom, these positions may very well be filled by Old Testament saints who qualified to rule from the heavens prior to this part of the kingdom being taken from Israel [cf. Matthew 8:11-12; Luke 13:28-29; Hebrews 11:8-16].)

“Eternal Life” and “Everlasting Punishment”

All judgments preceding the Millennium have the kingdom in view.  But the wording of Matthew 25:41, 46 — those on Christ’s left hand going away into “everlasting punishment,” in “everlasting fire”; or those on His right hand entering into “eternal life” — would appear to clearly teach something different.  Such though is not the case at all.

There is a translation problem to begin with, and once this has been straightened out and the whole of the two parts of Matthew 25:31-46 are viewed together, along with being viewed in the light of related Scripture, particularly the larger context of the Olivet Discourse — comparing Scripture with Scripture — the matter becomes quite clear.  In fact, when this is done, it becomes impossible to teach that which is almost universally taught in this passage (i.e., a judgment of both saved and unsaved individuals, with eternal verities in view [eternal life and/or eternal damnation]).

1)  The Translation Problem

The translation problem lies in the words “eternal” and “everlasting” in Matthew 25:41, 46.  In the English translation, “eternal life” is used relative to all those on Christ’s right hand, and “everlasting punishment” is used relative to all those on His left hand.

Eternal” and “everlasting” in these verses are both translations of the Greek word aionion, which is the adjective form of the noun aion.  Both words mean the same thing, which is a meaning other than “eternal,” though the words could be thought of in the sense of “eternal” if the context permits.

But this is not the case at all in Matthew 25:31-36.  Contextually, in this section of Scripture, the word aionion could not possibly be understood as “eternal” or “everlasting.”

(Neither the Hebrew text of the Old Testament nor the Greek text of the New Testament contains a word for “eternal.”  Olam is the word usually translated “eternal,” “everlasting,” or “perpetual” in English translations of the Old Testament; and aion [a noun] or aionios [the adjective form of aion] are the words translated “eternal” or “everlasting” in the New Testament [aidios, an older form of aionios, used only two times and meaning exactly the same as aionios, is the only exception (Romans 1:20 and Jude 1:6)].

Olam, aion, and aionios all have to do with “a long period of time,” which, if the context permits, can refer to “eternity” [e.g., the aionios God in Romans 16:26; cf. Psalm 136:1ff].  But the words standing alone, apart from a context, cannot be understood as “eternal.”

Context is the all-important factor to ascertain the length of time in view when these words are used.

Aion and aionios are usually thought of and used numerous times in the New Testament in the sense of “an age.”  And a usage of this nature is even brought over into English.  For example, the English word “aeon [or ‘eon’]” is derived from the Greek word aion.

The only way in which the Greek text can express “eternal” apart from textual considerations is by a use of aion in the plural [e.g., Luke 1:33; Hebrews 13:8, referring to “the ages,” i.e., ages without end, which would comprise eternity] or a double use of aion,  in the plural and articular both times [e.g., Revelation 1:6; 4:9-10, referring to “the ages of the ages,” again, ages without end].

And the use of aionios in Matthew 25:41, 46, referring to an inverse of that seen in Matthew 25:34 [failing to realize an inheritance in the kingdom] can only be understood as “age-lasting.” It can only be understood as referring to the outcome of a judgment of unfaithful saved Gentiles coming out of the Tribulation.

A judgment of the unsaved, with eternal verities in view, could not possibly be the subject at hand in Matthew 25:41, 46.  First, the context will not permit such an understanding of these verses; and second, inheritance in the kingdom, contextually in view, would limit this judgment to the saved alone.  Note Romans 8:17:  “And if children, then heirs . . . .”

“Sheep” and “goats” (Matthew 25:32-33), can only be understood contextually as a metaphorical way of describing two classes of saved individuals, similar to the parable of the wheat and the tares in Matthew 13:24-30.  The unsaved and eternal verities simply cannot be in view in either passage.  Rather, in both passages, only the saved, with a view to an inheritance or non-inheritance in the kingdom, can be in view.)

2)  The Complete Text Itself

The problem seen with the common, erroneous interpretation of Matthew 25:31-46 when viewing the complete text has been alluded to in the previous data concerning aion and aionios.  That which is seen in this section of the Olivet Discourse is a judgment of saved Gentiles at the time Christ returns, with the kingdom in view.  Yet, the translation, “eternal” in connection with those on Christ’s right hand and “everlasting” in connection with those on His left hand, completely removes matters from the issue at hand.

(The kingdom in view throughout the Olivet Discourse is the coming 1,000-year reign over the earth, when Christ and His co-heirs will sit on the throne as seen in Revelation 3:21, “My throne [Christ’s throne],” and rule over the present earth.

The kingdom as it will exist beyond that time — after the destruction of the present heavens and earth [the heavens associated with the earth, not the universe as a whole] and a new heavens and new earth have been brought into existence, with power emanating from “the throne of God and of the Lamb” [2 Peter 3:10ff; Revelation 22:1, 3] — is another matter.

The kingdom in view when Christ and His co-heirs reign over the earth from “My throne” has to do with the government of this present earth and will last for 1,000 years.  This is the kingdom in view throughout all three sections of the Olivet Discourse, with the overcomer’s promises in Revelation 2; 3 having to do with this 1,000-year kingdom alone.

And, to enlarge upon the preceding, this is the kingdom in view anyplace in Scripture — Old Testament or New Testament — where promises have been made to Israel or to Christians regarding the kingdom.  All distinctions for faithfulness and unfaithfulness — whether relative to Jews, Christians, or Gentiles — have to do with this 1,000-year period alone, not with the eternal ages.

The kingdom in view beyond the Millennium has to do with the new heavens, the new earth, and with power emanating from “the throne of God and of the Lamb” [which can only be universal in nature]; and this continuing facet of the kingdom will be eternal in length.

Refer to Bible One - Arlen Chitwood's Prophecy on Mount Olivet, Conclusion for additional details on the preceding.)

The translation in the English text in Matthew 25:34, 46 has made “inherit the kingdom” (Matthew 25:34) synonymous with “eternal life” (Matthew 25:46) for those on Christ’s right hand, which cannot be true at all.  Realizing an inheritance in the kingdom can only be equated with “life for the age,” never with eternal life, which is exactly how the Greek word aionios, used with “life,” should, contextually, be translated and understood.

And, in like fashion, contextually, “everlasting punishment” should be properly translated “age-lasting punishment.”  That which those on Christ’s left hand receive would be the antithesis of that which the ones on His right hand receive.  Instead of realizing an inheritance in the kingdom, they would be rejected for this inheritance; and, instead of possessing life for the age, they would realize the opposite, expressed in a slightly different way in verse forty-one — “Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting [aionios, ‘age-lasting’] fire . . . .”

3)  Comparing Scripture with Scripture

To understand that which is meant by “age-lasting fire,” one of the best places to begin is with the overcomer’s promises in Revelation 2; 3 and see the same thing befalling non-overcoming Christians (also seen in a different fashion in the four parables in the Christian section of the Olivet Discourse).  And this can be seen in the second of the overcomer’s promises, in the message to the Christians in the church in Smyrna, in Revelation 2:11b:

. . . He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.

Not being hurt or being hurt by the second death is in connection with overcoming or not overcoming.  The promise that the one overcoming will not be hurt by the second death in Revelation 2:11 clearly portends the opposite for the non-overcomer.  That is, the overcoming Christian will not be hurt by the second death, but the non-overcoming Christian will be hurt by the second death.  And the whole of the matter is in relation to realizing or not realizing an inheritance in the kingdom, not with eternal life.

The expression, “the second death,” appears three times in Revelation chapters twenty and twenty-one (Revelation 20:6, 14; 21:8), where it is used in connection with judgments of both the saved and the unsaved and where it is, as well, associated with “the lake of fire” in connection with the judgments of both the saved and the unsaved.

And in the light of Revelation 20:4-6; 21:7-8, which deal with the saved in connection with overcoming or being overcome, referencing the second death, Revelation 2:11 can mean only one thing:

Overcoming Christians, as stated in Revelation 2:11, are not going to be “hurt by the second death.”  But the inverse of that has to be equally true as well, for the promise carries a clearly implied warning.  Non-overcoming Christians are going to be “hurt by the second death,” defined in Scripture as having “their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8b).

“Fire” in Scripture is associated with the judgment of the saved as well as the judgment of the unsaved.  And though the Christians’ works will be tried “by [‘in’] fire” at the judgment seat, this is not synonymous with Christians having a part in “their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

Rather, at this judgment, Christians will be shown to have either overcome or to have been overcome, with the carrying out of decisions and determinations made at the judgment seat occurring at a time following these events.  And it will be at this time, following judgment, that non-overcoming Christians will be “hurt by the second death,” which is associated with the lake of fire.

(Note in the judgment of the unsaved in Revelation 20:11-15 that the second death and the lake of fire enter into the matter only following judgment.  The second death and the lake of fire come into view only following decisions and determinations pertaining to the judgment of the unsaved.

And it will be the same for the saved preceding this time.  They will first be judged.  Only then, only following the decisions and determinations pertaining to their judgment, does the second death and the lake of fire come into view.)

A)  THE OVERCOMER’S PROMISES

The word “overcome” is a translation of the Greek word nikao, which means “to conquer” or “to gain a victory over.”  The thought inherent in the word nikao (or nike, the noun form of the word) always means to be victorious in a contest or conflict.  The “overcomers” are the conquerors, the victors; they are the ones who will have successfully run the race of the faith; they are the ones who will have conquered the numerous encountered obstacles along the way.

There are seven different overcomer’s promises in Revelation 2; 3, and each promise is millennial in its scope of fulfillment.  That is, these promises will be realized by overcoming Christians, or they will fail to be realized by Christians who have been overcome, during the 1,000-year reign of Christ after Christians have had their works tried “by [‘in’] fire” at the judgment seat.

(There can be no such thing as Christians being hurt by the second death beyond the Millennium, for Revelation 21:4 plainly declares that there will be no more death during this time.  Former things of this nature will have passed away.

Nor can the Son invite Christians to sit on “My throne” [the seventh and last overcomer’s promise; Revelation 3:21] beyond the Millennium, for He will not be seated on this throne at that time.  Instead He will be seated with His Father on “the throne of God and of the Lamb” [Revelation 22:1, 3].

During the Millennium, regal power over the earth will emanate from the Son’s throne above the present earth.  But during the ages beyond, regal power over the universe will emanate from the throne of God and of the Lamb on the new earth.)

Christians have been saved with a view to being overcomers and bringing forth fruit.  This matter comprises the very heart of the message that is to be proclaimed to Christians throughout the dispensation.  Israel has been set aside during this time, and God is calling out another people — a separate and distinct people — “for His name,” taken mainly from among the Gentiles (Acts 15:14).

Those whom God is presently dealing with comprise an entirely new creation, which is neither Jew nor Gentile, forming one new manin Christ.”  And God is extending to individual members of this one new man, to Christians, the privilege of overcoming and bringing forth fruit, with a view to their occupying positions as joint-heirs with His Son in the heavenly sphere of the coming kingdom.

God has set aside an entire dispensation for this purpose, and judgment at the end of this dispensation will reveal man’s response to this privilege.  Some Christians will be shown to have overcome, possessing works comparable to “gold, silver, precious stones”; but other Christians will be shown to have been overcome, possessing works comparable to “wood, hay, straw.”

The overcomers will, at that time, inherit the promised blessings of Revelation 2; 3; but those shown to have been overcome will be denied these blessings.  This is the subject matter dealt with in the opening three chapters of the book of Revelation.

B)  BEING HURT OF THE SECOND DEATH

That which is in view concerning a non-overcoming Christian one day being hurt of the second death following decisions and determinations at the judgment seat, as previously seen, is explained later in this same book.  The second death for the non-overcomer is having a “part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone” (Revelation 21:8); and having a part in the lake of fire is explained by and through God’s dealings with the unsaved in the previous chapter as being “cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:15).

And seeing individuals cast into “the furnace of fire” in Matthew 13:42, 50 is simply another way of expressing the same thing.

(The parables in Matthew 13 deal with the Kingdom of the Heavens and fruit bearing, not with eternal salvation.  Thus, the subject matter has to do with the saved, not with the unsaved.

Further, in Matthew 13:1, Christ going out of “the house” [a reference to Israel] and down by “the seaside” [a reference to the Gentiles], the one new manin Christ” [about to be brought into existence at the time these parables were given] is seen throughout the first four parables.  In this respect, those gathered out of Christ’s kingdom, which “offend” and “practice lawlessness,” who are cast into a furnace of fire, can only be identified as saved individuals.

Also, this casting into a furnace of fire in Matthew 13:42, 50 occurs before the Millennium.  The unsaved cast into the lake of fire in Revelation 20:15 occurs following the Millennium.  They are not the same.)

But is the second death, being cast into the lake of fire, something that will be carried out in a literal sense?  Or, is Scripture dealing with metaphors at this point?  And, if the latter, what about the unsaved being cast into the lake of fire at the end of the Millennium, in Revelation 20:11-15?

If one is literal, would not the other have to be literal as well?  Or, if one is metaphorical, would not the other have to be metaphorical as well?

C)  ALLOWING SCRIPTURE TO INTERPRET SCRIPTURE

In John 15:6 and Hebrews 6:8, saved individuals are spoken of in a metaphorical sense, where a burning with fire is referenced.  And the context both places has to do with either bearing fruit or not bearing fruit, which is exactly the same thing that is seen in the Matthew 13 parables.  Or, as the matter is expressed in Revelation 2; 3, it has to do with either overcoming or being overcome.

And the negative side of the matter is expressed at least two other ways in Scripture — being cast into Gehenna (a reference to the place of refuse outside the city walls of Jerusalem at this time; Matthew 5:22, 29-30; 23:15, 33) or being cast into outer darkness (Matthew 8:12; 22:13; 25:30).

Overcoming or not overcoming and being unhurt or being hurt by the second death in Revelation 2:11 is expressed a slightly different way in Romans 8:13:

For if you [a reference to ‘brethren’ in Romans 8:12] live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

Whether Gehenna or outer darkness in Matthew, a burning with fire in John and Hebrews, being cast into a furnace or lake of fire in Matthew and Revelation, or suffering death or being hurt by the second death in Romans and Revelation, different facets of exactly the same thing are in view.

All of these are used in contexts showing that they have to do with saved people in relation to fruit bearing and the kingdom.

By comparing Scripture with Scripture, it is plain that these are simply different ways of expressing the same thing.  And since a literal casting into outer darkness, Gehenna, or a furnace or lake of fire could not possibly be in view (for these different places could not possibly be looked upon as referring to the same place in a literal sense), it is evident that metaphors are being used throughout.

But relative to the unsaved and the lake of fire, this is simply not expressed other ways in Scripture as it is with the saved, leaving no room for any thought other than understanding the matter as literal, not metaphorical.

Aside from the preceding, it is clear that all Christians, faithful and unfaithful alike, will be in the kingdom.  This is seen in the type in Genesis 18; 19.  Both Abraham and Lot, in the final analysis, are seen on the mount (a “mountain” in Scripture signifies a kingdom).  But note the stark difference in the place that each occupied.

Abraham stood before the Lord, where he had always stood (Genesis 18:22; 19:27).  Lot though found himself in a place separate from the Lord, in a place where he also had always stood (Genesis 19:1, 30).

“Everlasting [‘Age-Lasting’] Fire”

Then He will also say to those on the left hand, “Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting [age-lasting] fire, prepared for the devil and his angels. (Matthew 25:41)

As has been shown, similar verses to the preceding are used different places in the New Testament relative to non-overcoming Christians.  And, with this in mind, understanding how these verses are used, the matter concerning how that which is stated in Matthew 25:41 relative to those on Christ’s left hand is to be understood should be evident without further comment.

(Why does Scripture associate non-overcoming Christians with the lake of fire in relation to Christ’s millennial reign, in the manner previously seen [which would be the same for those on Christ’s left hand in Matthew 25:41]?  The answer would be the same as the reason why Scripture associates the unsaved with the lake of fire throughout the endless ages of eternity, following the Millennium.

The lake of fire was not prepared for man.  Rather, it was prepared “for the devil and his angels” [Matthew 25:41].  It was prepared for those who had rejected God’s supreme power and authority, as Satan sought to acquire power and authority above that which had been delegated [Isaiah 14:13-14].  Thus, in this respect, the lake of fire is connected with regality.

And man, created to replace Satan and his angels, finds his connection with the lake of fire on exactly the same basis.  Saved man, ignoring the very reason for his salvation [which is regal], will find himself associated with the lake of fire during the Millennium [an association connected with all that the existence of the lake of fire implies].  And unsaved man, ignoring salvation and the reason for man’s creation [which, again, is regal], will find himself associated with the lake of fire throughout the endless ages following the Millennium [an association connected with all that the existence of the lake of fire implies].)

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Bible One - Arlen Chitwood's Prophecy on Mount Olivet, Ch. 24  Left Hand

Word Document:  SAVED GENTILES ON BOTH HIS RIGHT & LEFT HANDS by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

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It is the continuing story of Abraham’s tent, with its occupants.  There was evidently peace in the tent as long as Ishmael was in the tent alone, for fourteen years.  But once Isaac was born, the trouble began;  and it has continued, unabated, for 4,000 years (Genesis 21:1ff).  The descendants of Ishmael and the descendants of Isaac, during Man’s Day, simply CANNOT peacefully co-exist together.

Nor are they supposed to do so.  God’s promises to Abraham are in view, and the son of the bondwoman has no part with the son of the freewoman in these promises.  Rather, he is to be cast out (Genesis 21:8-12), though this awaits God taking care of matters at the time of His Son’s return.

THE END SEEN FROM THE BEGINNING
Lessons from 4,000 Years ago, Unheeded today
By Arlen Chitwood of Lamp Broadcast

“Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children:  and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar.

And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing.  I pray thee, go in unto my maid:  it may be that I may obtain children by her.  And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai” (Genesis 16:1-2).

“Remember the former things of old:  for I am God, and there is none else;  I am God, and there is none like me,

Declaring the end from the beginning; and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isaiah 46:9-10).

God sees the end from the beginning, and He has structured His Word in this manner, not only at the beginning but numerous places throughout.

Both Testaments begin exactly the same way, with John’s gospel occupying its proper place beginning the New Testament — “In [the] beginning God…” (Genesis 1:1a);  “In [the] beginning was the Word…” (John 1:1a).

As well, each book beginning each Testament relates the complete story — from the beginning to the end — in the opening two chapters of each, relating exactly the same story, though from different perspectives (Genesis 1:1-2:3; John 1:1-2:11).

Then, the remainder of each book, providing commentary for the beginning of each book, as well, relates the same story, told two different ways (“types” in Genesis, “signs” in John [cf. Hebrews 1:1-2]).  And beyond this, throughout each book, there are numerous beginning points which take matters to the same end.

The preceding is simply the manner in which God has structured His Word throughout.

The remainder of this article, seeing God reveal the end from the beginning, has to do with 4,000 years of human history, with the seed of Abraham at the beginning point (the birth of Ishmael and Isaac) and the seed of Abraham today (the descendants of Ishmael and Isaac 4,000 years later).

And, as will be shown concerning the matter, God reveals the end from the beginning (revealed during Abraham’s day at the time of and following the birth of both Ishmael and Isaac).

Then, as will also be shown, man, relative to the whole of the matter, too often does two things:

1)  Fails to learn from history, repeating the same mistakes.

2)  And, if he can foul things up, he probably will.

God’s Way, Man’s Way

God has an affinity for ALWAYS doing things a particular way.  God uses unchanging patterns which He Himself established.  He uses numbers, metaphors, types, signs, parables, etc.  And the manner in which He uses each is not only consistent but fraught with significance and meaning, with each just as much a part of God’s revealed Word as any other part of the Word, revealed after any fashion.

Then, God’s complete word picture of that which He has revealed to man concerning His plans and purposes can be seen ONLY ONE WAY.  This complete picture, exactly as God gave it, can be seen ONLY through taking all the different parts which God gave at different times and ways and putting all of them together in a proper manner, in exact keeping with how God has structured His Word.

Now, with the preceding in mind, note the previously referenced account in the Word pertaining to Abraham and his seed.

Four thousand years ago God called Abraham out of Ur of the Chaldees, making certain promises to him concerning a seed and a land.  Abraham was to have an offspring, and through this individual God would bring forth a nation which would be established in the land to which Abraham has been called, the land of Canaan.  And through this nation all the other nations of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3).

Once in the land to which He had been called, following a trip to Egypt and then back to the land, the years began to pass without God fulfilling His promise concerning a seed.  Throughout this time, ten years in the land, Sarah remained barren (Genesis 16:1-3).

Sarah, realizing her apparent inability to bear children, approached Abraham with a plan to help God fulfill His promise concerning Abraham having a seed to continue his lineage.  Abraham, with Sarah’s blessing, would go in unto Sarah’s Egyptian handmaid (possibly previously acquired while in Egypt), have a child by Hagar, and God’s promises could then be fulfilled through this child.  And this is what Abraham did, resulting in the birth of Ishmael.

Abraham was eighty-six years old when Ishmael was born, and this is followed by thirteen silent years in Scripture (Genesis 16:16-17:1).

Then, when Abraham was ninety-nine years old, God reappeared to him and revealed that the time had arrived for His promise from years earlier to be fulfilled.

God revealed to Abraham that about this time during the following year Sarah would bear him a son, whose name was to be called “Isaac.”  And all which God had previously promised to Abraham would be fulfilled through this son.

Then, beyond that, this would be a miraculous birth.  Sarah was beyond the age of childbearing.  Everything about this birth would be of the Lord’s doings, not man’s (Genesis 17:1ff; 18:1ff; 21:1ff).

But the birth of Isaac, though fulfilling God’s promise concerning a seed, was far from the end of the matter.  Fifteen years earlier Abraham and Sarah had tried to help God fulfill His promise by turning to Egypt for help (to Hagar, an Egyptian).  And Scripture is quite clear about those who go down to Egypt for help (Isaiah 31:1), a statement which could only be intensified in Abraham and Sarah’s case, for they were trying to help God fulfill His promise through that of Egyptian origin, i.e., through that of the world (cf. I Samuel 15:9-28).

And the preceding is the clear reason why today, 4,000 years later, the Middle East is aflame.  The descendants of Abraham, the Jewish people, have done exactly the same thing that Abraham and Sarah did by going to Hagar.  And the descendants of Abraham through Hagar — the Ishmaelites — not only fill the Middle East today but are the bitter enemies of the descendants of Isaac.

In one respect, it is the continuing story of Abraham’s tent, with its occupants.  There was evidently peace in the tent as long as Ishmael was in the tent alone, for fourteen years.  But once Isaac was born, the trouble began;  and it has continued, unabated, for 4,000 years (Genesis 21:1ff).  The descendants of Ishmael and the descendants of Isaac, during Man’s Day, simply CANNOT peacefully co-exist together.

Nor are they supposed to do so.  God’s promises to Abraham are in view, and the son of the bondwoman has no part with the son of the freewoman in these promises.  Rather, he is to be cast out (Genesis 21:8-12), though this awaits God taking care of matters at the time of His Son’s return.

The Continuing Problem

In the meantime, the problem continues, with no one being able to do anything about it (Hosea 5:13-14).  But to foster the problem, a corresponding and an inseparable problem exists;  and, this problem, as previously stated, is one paralleling Abraham and Sarah going to Hagar, causing the problem.

As Abraham and Sarah sought to help God fulfill His promise concerning a seed, the descendants of Abraham, in modern times, relative to God’s promises concerning the Jewish people and the land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, have done EXACTLY THE SAME THING.  They have taken it upon themselves to help God fulfill His promises, and they have done this through the arm of flesh, which is going to Egypt for help.

And, beyond the preceding, over the intervening years, the Jewish people have done this with the blessing and help of numerous Christian leaders — who have misled the masses — believing and teaching, COMPLETELY CONTRARY TO SCRIPTURE, that this is a work of God.

World War II, with 6,000,000 Jews slain through the Third Reich’s attempt to produce a Jew-free Europe, produced the catalyst for that which occurred three years later — the existence, after almost 2,000 years in the diaspora, of a recognized Jewish State in the land of Israel (the Nation of Israel today).

The nation was small at first, but over almost seven decades since that time, Jewish people from all nations have streamed into Israel.  And today some 6,000,000 Jews, about two-fifths of the world’s Jewish population, dwell in that land.

So, what can possibly be wrong with the preceding, and how can this be likened to Abraham and Sarah trying to help God fulfill His promise concerning a seed?

The answer is very simple.  God drove the Jewish people out among the nations to effect repentance through Gentile persecution.  And God has promised that He would one day regather His people back to a healed land, with the promises in the Abrahamic Covenant being fulfilled.

But this would occur ONLY AFTER His purpose for driving His people out among the nations had been fulfilled. This would occur ONLY FOLLOWING repentance on the part of the Jewish people out among the nations.

Then beyond the preceding, Scripture is quite clear that repentance will be brought to pass ONLY through Gentile persecution during the coming “time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7-9), with the Jewish people’s restoration and a healing of their land occurring ONLY FOLLOWING MESSIAH’S RETURN, following “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Leviticus 26:38-42; Matthew 24:29-31).

But note what has occurred.  The Jewish people have risen up, sought to emancipate themselves apart from either repentance or their Messiah, and return to their land — an unhealed people in an unhealed land.

In essence, they have done exactly the same thing which Abraham and Sarah sought to do — HELP GOD FULFILL HIS PROMISE.

In history, this type thing resulted in 4,000 years of trouble, arriving at where matters exist today — the Middle East aflame because of the presence of the Ishmaelite nations on the one hand (a people who are not even supposed to be there, but are there because of Abraham and Sarah’s actions) and the presence of a Jewish nation in their midst (which is not even supposed to be there either, but is there because of a man-made Zionism).

Solution to the Problem

But God is about to take care of matters, exactly as He did during Abraham’s day.  As the time for Isaac’s birth had not arrived when Ishmael was born, the time for Israel’s return to her land had not arrived when statehood was declared May 14, 1948.

During the coming “time of Jacob’s trouble,” God is going to allow the man of sin to uproot the Jewish people, destroy their cities, their land, slay a tenth of those in the land in the process, and either lead captive or drive the remainder back out among the nations (Isaiah 6:9-13; Joel 3:6; Luke 21:20-24).  And there, out among the nations with the remainder of world Jewry, exactly as God had previously decreed, He will then deal with them relative to repentance.

That is what’s in store for the Jewish people in the very near future.  And, as seen in the long-reaching effects of Abraham and Sarah’s attempts to circumnavigate God’s plans and purposes, so will it be in Israel’s present attempts to circumnavigate God’s plans and purposes.  Scripture, several places, speaks of the furnace during that day being heated sevenfold (Leviticus 26:18-31; Daniel 3:17-25; Matthew 12:43-45).

Then, the future for Israel following this time is as bright as God’s promises.  God Himself, personally, will bring matters to pass, through a Divine work, in His way and time, not through man’s efforts, in his way and time.

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Lamp Broadcast - The End Seen from the Beginning by Arlen Chitwood.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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Spirit-salvation is eternal in scope and is based solely on the work of Christ on the Cross and which can never be lost; whereas soul-salvation is strictly millennial in scope, is based solely upon a Christian’s perseverance (faithfulness) in faith-based works during his Christian life, and is a salvation that can be lost through neglect (Hebrews 2:3), which is the subject of the various warning passages in the book of Hebrews. 

God’s Remedy for Spiritual Immaturity
By Charles Strong of Bible One

(This document centers on Jesus the Christ (lit. “Messiah”) and the entire tripartite redemptive plan of God for mankind, a key aspect of which is largely absent throughout Christendom today. It is replete with an abundance of scriptural references which can serve as a suitable Bible study lesson plan for any Christian Bible study class. 

The underlining of specific words in passages of Scripture is for emphasis)

God’s inspired (living) Word emphasizes the necessity for continuous spiritual growth in both the understanding of and implementation of God’s will and purpose for mankind.  No Christian is exempt from this mandate, as seen in the following passages of Scripture:

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.  And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:1-2)

Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature. (1 Corinthians 14:20)

Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. (2 Corinthians 7:1)

That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints. (Ephesians 1:17-18)

For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height — to know the love of Christ that passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 3:14-19)

And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers [lit. pastor-teachers], for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge [epignosis - full-knowledge] of the Son of God, to a perfect [lit. full-grown, mature] man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting. (Ephesians 4:11-14)

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind . . . . (Philippians 3:13-15a)

For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy. (Colossians 1:9-11)

As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. (Colossians 2:6-7)

Finally then, brethren, we urge and exhort in the Lord Jesus that you should abound more and more, just as you received from us how you ought to walk and to please God . . . For this is the will of God, your sanctification . . . that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor . . . For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. (1 Thessalonians 4:1, 3-4, 7 [3a])

Who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge [epignosis – full knowledge] of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:4)

Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.  Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. . . .  Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all.  Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you. (1 Timothy 4:12-13, 15-16)

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15)

But you must continue in the things that you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is given by inspiration of God [lit. God-breathed], and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:14-17)

Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away.  For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him. (Hebrews 2:1-3)

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.  For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the Word of righteousness, for he is a babe.  But solid food 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 5:12-14)

Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the Word, that you may grow thereby . . . you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 2:1-2, 5)

Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless . . . but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  (2 Peter 3:14, 18a)

A person enters the family of God through spirit-salvation, otherwise known as the “new birth” or the “birth from above,” which is apprehended by a one-time decision in which he accepts solely by faith God’s grace-gift of eternal salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9), which is based entirely upon the vicarious (substitutionary) penalty-payment made by Jesus Christ on the Cross of Calvary (Isaiah 53:6; Galatians 3:13; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:24) — a transaction that is irrevocable by either God or man (John 6:37; 10:27-28; 2 Corinthians 1:22; 5:5; Ephesians 1:13-14).  This expression of the will, a non-meritorious act God requires man to execute for personal eternal redemption, is most succinctly stated by Paul and Silas to the Philippian jailer’s inquiry (“Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”), which was “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved “ (Acts 16:30-31; see also John 1:12; Acts 10:43).

At this discretionary junction, when a person who is “dead in trespasses and sins” is made spiritually “alive” (Ephesians 2:1), he enters the family of God as a spiritual infant, a child who experientially knows almost nothing of God’s Word.  And this is due to the fact that before his spiritual birth, “the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they [the things of the Spirit] are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14).  This fact argues forcefully against what some evangelicals promote as “Lordship Salvation,” which is the dual requirement to “make Christ Lord of one’s life” in addition to “believing in Him” in order to obtain eternal life.  Upon being born from above, the infantile Christian does not know what it means for Christ to be Lord of his life and he has no concept of the path to this lofty goal.  Making Christ “Lord of one’s life,” unlike the instantaneous act of spiritual birth, is a continuous and progressive process of sanctification (being set-apart) that will dominate the Christian throughout his entire temporal life should he choose to engage in it.

The venture down the pathway of sanctification is classified in Scripture as soul-salvation (Matthew 10:39; 16:25; 16:24-27; Mark 8:35; Luke 9:24; 17:33; John 12:25 [“life” and “soul” are used interchangeably in the New Testament, both stemming from the same Greek word, psuche]; Hebrews 10:39; James 1:21; 1 Peter 1:9), which is separate from spirit-salvation  (John 3:6-7), a distinction made by the Holy Spirit (the Greek words for “spirit” and “soul” are never used interchangeably) as this is necessary regarding the tripartite nature of man (1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 4:12). 

Spirit-salvation is eternal in scope and is based solely on the work of Christ on the Cross and which can never be lost; whereas soul-salvation is strictly millennial in scope, is based solely upon a Christian’s perseverance (faithfulness) in faith-based works during his Christian life, and is a salvation that can be lost through neglect (Hebrews 2:3), which is the subject of the various warning passages in the book of Hebrews.  And whereas spirit-salvation is determined and settled by the person’s decision of faith in Christ during temporal life, his soul-salvation is determined by issues and determinations (based upon his works) made at the Judgment Seat of Christ subsequent to his temporal life (Matthew 16:24-27; 1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10-11a; Romans 2:3-11; 14:10; Galatians 6:7; Colossians 3:24-25; Hebrews 10:23-31; Revelation 2; 3; 22:12) and which is then extended throughout the Messianic Era, the millennial reign of Christ over Earth.

(For a comprehensive comparison of spirit-salvation to soul-salvation the following two books by Arlen L. Chitwood are recommended: Salvation of the Soul in this site, and Bible One - Arlen Chitwood's Salvation by Grace through Faith.  Another excellent book on the subjects is Bible One - Gary Whipple's Beyond the Rapture.)

A Christian’s soul-salvation is directly proportional to his spiritual growth, that is, it is directly related to his spiritual maturity.  The first cannot be achieved without the second.  Spiritual maturity is absolutely essential if the Christian is to please God in this life, to obtain his soul’s salvation at the Judgment Seat of Christ, to be part of the Bride of Christ.

(As in the type, the bride of the First Adam was taken from his body [Genesis 2:21-23] , so it will be in the antitype, the bride of the Second Adam will be taken from His body [Romans 5:14b; 1 Corinthian 15:45-49; Philippians 3:11], and to ultimately rule and reign with Christ as His wife and consort queen during the coming Messianic Era [2 Timothy 2:12; Revelation 19:7-8; 20:4-6])

But sadly, if one will understand and accept the lessons of the parables relayed by Christ, as recorded in Matthew 13, which pertain to the “mysteries of the kingdom” (Matthew 13:11), i.e., the acquisition of the “word of the kingdom” (Matthew 13:19) doctrine from then until now; it will become apparent to him that spiritual maturity will not be the norm during the last days of the Church dispensation.

(It should be noted that there is a distinct difference between gnosis [knowledge] and epignosis [full or mature knowledge] of the Word [Ephesians 1:7; 4:13; Colossians 1:9-10; 2:2; 1 Timothy 2:14; 2 Timothy 2:25; 3:7; Titus 1:1; Hebrews 10:26; 2 Peter 1:2-3].  The former applies to a fragmentary understanding of it; the latter to a clear and mature [comprehensive] understanding of it.  The former relates to the “milk” [elementary] doctrines; the latter to the “meat” [advanced] doctrines [Hebrews 5:12-6:2].  The former speaks to spirit-salvation; the latter to soul-salvation, which involves an understanding of God’s comprehensive program of redemption pertaining to the purpose and future of man — the “word of the kingdom.”)

An understanding of this key doctrine of God’s Word, i.e., the “word of the kingdom,” is nearly non-existent in Christendom today.  And because of this, most Christians lack the additional motivation that always accompanies this truth, which can be most efficacious toward the achievement of more advanced stages of spiritual growth.  Indeed, to come to an understanding of the “word of the kingdom” normally reflects a plateau of doctrinal awareness that is associated with proper advancement along the spiritual path of maturity.

The question is, as is reflected in the title to this study, what is God’s remedy for spiritual immaturity?  And to this writer the answer is summed up in the following passage of Scripture:

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith [lit. the faith], who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2)

The key to spiritual growth (maturity) is encompassed in the words, “looking to Jesus, the Author (lit. Originator) and Finisher (lit. Perfecter) of our faith.”  For it is only as we look to Christ are we able to “lay aside every weight, and the sin that so easily ensnares us,” permitting us to “run with endurance the race that is set before us.”  The apostle Paul says it in similar fashion:

But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts. (Romans 13:14)

My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you. (Galatians 4:19)

As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him. (Colossians 2:6)

Quite clearly, Christianity is all about Christ.  He was the instrumental Person of the Trinity who created man, the very objects to which Christianity encompasses (Genesis 1:2b; Psalm 33:16; John 1:1-3, 10, 14; Ephesians 3:9; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2).  Christ was the One in whom God the Father expressed and continues to express His pleasure (Isaiah 42:1; Matthew 3:17; 12:18; 17:5; Mark 1:11; 2 Peter 1:17).  Christ alone became sin for us that we may become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21).  The Holy Spirit never focuses His attention upon Himself; the Holy Spirit will only testify of and glorify Christ (John 14:26; 15:26; 16:13-14).  And it is Christ alone by whom Christians will be judged; and, upon passing this judgment will rule and reign with Christ as His Bride and consort queen during the coming Messianic Era (2 Timothy 2:12; Revelation 20:4-6).

Yet there is extensive and pervasive efforts throughout Christendom, particularly in so-called evangelical circles, that would have the believer in Christ look elsewhere for spiritual growth, to the Holy Spirit, to emotional gyrations, to the local church, to self-effort in the adoption of a system of taboos (do’s and don’t), which is nothing more than legalism, all of which eventually leads to a state of pride and a certain “falling away” from true spiritual growth.  Indeed, while it is popular for Christians (and non-Christians) to proclaim the name of God in realms of religion, secularism, and politics; the name of Jesus Christ is often taboo, to be avoided as one would a plague.

Yet, in all matters of this life, it is Jesus Christ alone to whom the child of God must look if spiritual growth to maturity is to be achieved.  A Christian should avoid following a litany of rules prescribed by a religious organization or seeking what many incorrectly believe to be a “second act of grace,” i.e. the baptism of the Holy Spirit (in accordance with Scripture, this takes place at a person’s “birth from above,” when the Spirit baptizes [immerses] the believer into the Body of Christ in addition to indwelling and sealing the believer, a one-time transaction never to be repeated or reversed [John 7:39; 14:16, 17; Romans 5:5; 8:9, 15; 1 Corinthians 1:22; 3:16; 6:19; 12:13; 2 Corinthians 6:16; Galatians 3:28; 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 2:21-22; 4:30; 1 John 3:24]).  Instead, he is instructed to look to and walk in Christ until Christ is formed within him.

So how does the Christian look to Christ?  There is only one way.  Since there is a unique and definite link between Jesus Christ, the living Word of God, and the written (God-breathed) Word of God (the One reflecting the Other), the Christian is to immerse himself in the “implanted Word,” which will transform him progressively to spiritual maturity and the eventual salvation of his soul.  In fact, a comparison between the companion passages of Ephesians 5:18-20 and Colossians 3:16 confirms that a Christian is “filled [controlled] with the Spirit” when “the Word of Christ dwells in him richly.”

Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted Word, which is able to save your souls. (James 1:21)

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God (lit. God-breathed), and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete [mature], thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:2)

The following (indented) exegetical discussion of Romans 12:2, taken from Salvation of the Soul BOOK, in this site, is particularly noteworthy to the topic of this study:

Following the command in Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this age,” the Christian is commanded to be “transformed by the renewing of your mind.”  The Greek word translated “transformed” is metamorphoo.  This is the word from which the English word “metamorphosis” is derived.  This word refers to an inward change brought about completely apart from the power of the individual himself.  The individual Christian is powerless to bring about this metamorphosis.

In 2 Corinthians 11:13-15, Satan is said to be “transformed into an angel of light” and his ministers “transformed as the ministers of righteousness.”  In the Greek text the word “transformed” is not the same in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 as it is in Romans 12:2.  The word used in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 is metaschematizo, referring to an outward change; and, textually (2 Corinthians 11:13), this change is brought about through an individual’s own power.

Satan, thus, seeks to counterfeit the work of the Spirit by substituting an outward change in place of the inward change.  And the nature and source of this pseudo change often go unrecognized.

Christians who seek to bring about the change of Romans 12:2 themselves will always effect a metaschema (outward change) rather than a metamorphosis (inward change).  At the time of the birth from above the Spirit of God began a work in the Christian that He will continue “until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).  No effort on the part of Christians can help the Spirit of God effect this change.

Man’s way finds man actively involved, seeking spirituality through either quitting certain things or doing certain things, subsequently producing a metaschema.  But God’s way finds man passive, and God performs a work in the individual, ultimately producing the metamorphosis.

The endless list of “do’s” and “do not’s,” taboos formed by Christian groups; invariably have to do with a metaschema, not a metamorphosis.  Any effort on the part of Christians to help the Spirit of God bring about the transformation of Romans 12:2 will always result in pseudo-spirituality.  God’s way is an inward change accomplished through the power of the Spirit, not an outward change accomplished through the power of the individual.

Note according to the text how this inward change, the metamorphosis, takes place:  “. . . be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”  The word “renewing” is a translation of the Greek word anakainosis; and the action of the preceding verb (“transformed”) directs attention to a continuous renewing process, one which is to keep on taking place.  In 2 Corinthians 4:16 we are told that “the inward man is renewed [lit. ‘is being renewed’] day by day.”  This renewing process is to keep on taking place day in and day out for the entire duration of the pilgrim walk here on earth.

Then, Colossians 3:10 reveals how the renewing of the mind is accomplished:

And have put on the new man, which is renewed [lit. ‘is being renewed’] in knowledge after the image of Him that created Him.

Note the word “knowledge” in this verse.  The regular Greek word for “knowledge” is gnosis, but the word used in Colossians 3:10 is epignosis.  This is the word gnosis (knowledge) with the prefix epi (upon).  Epignosis, thus, means “knowledge upon knowledge,” i.e., “a mature knowledge.”  The word translated “renewed” is a past participle of anakainoo (the same word used in Romans 12:2 and 2 Corinthians 4:16) and could be better translated, “being renewed.”  The only way a Christian can acquire this mature knowledge, which allows the Spirit of God to work the metamorphosis in his life, is through receiving the living Word of God into his saved human spirit.

Christians must allow God to continue “breathing in” life.  The living, God-breathed Word must be allowed to flow into man’s saved human spirit or there can be no metamorphosis.  The renewing of the inward man “day by day,” through receiving “the implanted Word,” producing the metamorphosis in one’s life, is the manner in which the salvation of the soul is presently being effected.

As previously seen, receiving “the implanted Word” in James 1:21 and 1 Peter 2:2 is preceded by “laying aside” everything opposed to purity (ref. in this site, Ch. 3, God’s Firstborn Sons BOOK).  It is the same with the metamorphosis in Romans 12:2.  The words, “do not be conformed to this age [lit. ‘stop being conformed to this age’],” appear prior to the words, “be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”  Those “in Christ” are commanded to remove themselves from that which lies “in the evil one” prior to receiving “the implanted Word,” which will effect the metamorphosis in their lives.

Thus, Romans 12:2; James 1:21; and 1 Peter 2:2 all teach the same thing relative to laying aside everything opposed to purity prior to receiving “the implanted Word, which is able to save your souls.”

As is evident, the entire point of this study is to direct Christians to the Person of Christ alone in regards to their quest to achieve spiritual maturity.  It is only as we look to Christ, in the same fashion (by faith) that we became united to Him, that we are able to “walk in Him” (Colossians 2:6) down the road of spiritual growth.  And the only way we are able to look to Him is through immersion into the living (God-breathed) written Word.

Achieving spiritual maturity is the responsibility and duty of every Christian; and, the only remedy for spiritual immaturity is to look to Christ in all matters during our temporal life.  When you ask what Christ would do in any situation, you may always know if you have studied the Word, “the mind of Christ,” and thereby have grown to a deeper friendship with the One who paid your sin-penalty on the Cross of Calvary.

For “who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16)

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 2:5)

No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. (John 15:15)

Let us all follow Paul’s example:

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.  Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. (Philippians 3:13-15)

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Bible One - Charles Strong's God's Remedy for Spiritual Immaturity

Word Document:  God’s Remedy for Spiritual Immaturity by Charles Strong.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

(For a more comprehensive treatment of this subject, please see The Implanted Word and The Breath of God, both in this site.)

To website CONTENTS Page.

The expression, “in that day” (Amos 9:11), is used numerous times throughout both the major and minor Prophets.  And, it would go without saying, “that day” could only reference a future day set in contrast to the day in which the Prophet wrote and used this expression.

But what future day, or possibly what different future days, do the prophets have in mind through the use of this expression?  And that, of course, is ALWAYS to be determined by the context each time that the expression is used.

In That Day
A Future Day, Seen throughout the Prophets
By Arlen Chitwood of
Lamp Broadcast

“In that day I will raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof;  and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old.

That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the Lord that doeth this.

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 shall 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 God” (Amos 9:11-15).

The expression, “in that day” (Amos 9:11), is used numerous times throughout both the major and minor Prophets.  And, it would go without saying, “that day” could only reference a future day set in contrast to the day in which the Prophet wrote and used this expression.

But what future day, or possibly what different future days, do the prophets have in mind through the use of this expression?  And that, of course, is ALWAYS to be determined by the context each time that the expression is used.

However, observing the context each time, one will find, more often than not, a particular, singular usage.  In this respect, one will find that this expression is usually seen peculiarly related to ONLY ONE THING AND ONE TIME, not many different things and times.  The Prophets, continually, used this expression to reference events pertaining to Israel and the nations beyond Man’s 6,000-year Day, at the beginning of and during the Lord’s 1,000-year Day.

And this can easily be shown numerous places in the Prophets, beginning with Isaiah, where this expression appears far more times than in any other book.

Man’s Day, The Lord’s Day

Certain distinctions between Man’s Day and the Lord’s Day (the Day of the Lord) need to be established to properly understand what day and/or time is being referenced by the expression, “in that day.”  And one of the best ways to do this is to deal with the septenary structure of Scripture.

God has an affinity for numbers, and He established and set forth a septenary structure for His Word at the beginning — in the first thirty-four verses of Genesis (Genesis 1:1-2:3).  Accordingly, this septenary structure forms a foundational base for everything which God revealed from that point forward, throughout all of the Old Testament.

And the New Testament, in complete conformity to the Old Testament, forming commentary on the Old Testament, begins exactly the same way (provided one recognizes that the Gospel of John should begin the New Testament, not Matthew’s gospel).  John’s gospel not only begins the same way Genesis begins, showing a septenary structure, but it also parallels Genesis throughout (the types in Genesis paralleling the signs in John).

In the preceding respect, the same septenary structure opening Genesis (Genesis 1:1-2:3) is seen opening John (John 1:1-2:11).

(For more information on the preceding, refer to the author’s Genesis and John or Signs in John's Gospel and Signs in John's Gospel Links, all in this site.)

Attention has been called to this septenary structure beginning both Testaments in order to show the foundational basis for the length of both Man’s Day and the Lord’s Day.  And this, in turn, as previously alluded to, will form a foundational basis to properly understand and deal with the expression, “in that day,” as seen throughout the Prophets.

“Six” is man’s number, and “seven” is God’s number.  Exactly as foreshadowed in the foundational framework in Genesis 1:1-34 (“six” having to do with events during Man’s Day, “seven” having to do with events during the Lord’s Day), or the parallel section in John’s gospel (dealing with that foreshadowed in Genesis), God is again taking the same numerical time for the same completed purpose — the restoration of a subsequent ruined creation, ruined man, followed by a day of rest.

The ruined creation in Genesis was restored for man over six days time (man’s number), with God resting on the seventh day (God’s number).  Then, the preceding restoration, set perfect in the beginning, foreshadowed how God would subsequently restore ruined man, a subsequent ruined creation.  And this was/is all carried out through an established, unchangeable pattern concerning how God restores a ruined creation, set forth in this manner at a time preceding man’s creation and ruin.

Then, the opening two chapters of John’s gospel (John 1; 2), dealing more specifically with ruined man (e.g., John 1:29-36), cover the same septenary structure and end at the same place — with man, on the seventh day, restored and realizing the purpose for his creation, six days earlier, 6,000 years earlier.

Thus, each day in the restoration of the material creation in Genesis, followed by a day of rest, foreshadows 1,000-year days in the restoration of man (six days, 6,000 years, forming Man’s Day), followed by a 1,000-year day of rest (the Lord’s Day, the Messianic Era).

The whole of Scripture, accordingly, is built on this framework — Man’s Day lasting for six days, 6,000 years, and the Lord’s Day lasting for one day, 1,000 years (cf. II Peter 3:3-8).  And, exactly as seen in the foundational type in Genesis, the two NEVER, NEVER, overlap one another in Scripture — i.e., Man’s Day NEVER continues into any part of the Lord’s Day;  NOR is the Lord’s Day EVER dealt with back in any part of Man’s Day.

The six and seven days ARE NOT dealt with that way in the opening verses of Genesis, the opening verses of John, or anyplace else in Scripture.  Events occurring on the sixth day have no part in events about to occur on the seventh day;  nor do events occurring on the seventh day have any part in events which previously occurred on the sixth day.

ALL THINGS foreshadowed by the foundational type MUST be in complete keeping with ALL THINGS previously established in the foundational type.

In this respect, contrary to much popular thought among Bible teachers — teaching that the Lord’s Day (which, as will be shown, is the time referenced by “that day” in numerous texts) begins at a time during the last seven years of Man’s Day (Daniel’s Seventieth Week, the Tribulation), continuing from that point throughout the Tribulation and the ensuing Millennium — the Lord’s Day DOES NOT, IT CANNOT, begin until after Man’s Day has run its course.

The Lord’s Day can begin ONLY AFTER six days, ONLY AFTER  6,000 years, ONLY AFTER the Tribulation.  This is the way matters are set forth anyplace in Scripture where the subject is dealt with.

The Prophets — “In That Day”

A great deal of error in Biblical studies can be avoided if one knows and understands the simple basics set forth in the first part of this study.  And this would be even more so the case when studying the different Prophets use of “in that day,” for “that day.”   

In the Prophets, when used relative to a future end-time having to do with Israel and the nations, INVARIABLY refers to events occurring in the future Lord’s Day.  “That day,” used in this respect, can NEVER have anything to do with events occurring during Man’s Day (e.g., with events occurring either today or during the Tribulation, the last seven years of Man’s Day).

Note a scattering of references pertaining to “that day”:

One would normally begin with Isaiah in this respect, but before going to Isaiah and working forward through a number of Prophets, note a few things out of the small three-chapter Book of Zephaniah.

In this small book, there are twenty-two references to future time.  As well, in this book, “in that day” is consistently used as a reference to “the day of the Lord” (cf. Zephaniah 1:9-14; 2:2-3; 3:11, 16-20).

With this connection between “that day” and “the Lord’s Day,” note a number of corresponding references in Isaiah.

Isaiah 2:1-4 references the millennial Kingdom, beyond Man’s Day, in the Lord’s Day.  And three subsequent verses in this chapter (Isaiah 2:11, 17, 20) use the expression, “in that day,” referring back to the time depicted in these opening four verses.

Then note the subsequent usage of this same expression a number of places throughout Isaiah, all, contextually, referring to conditions immediately preceding or during the millennial kingdom, in the Lord’s Day, exactly as in chapter two (Isaiah 4:1-2; 11:10-11; 12:1, 4; 19:16, 18-19, 21, 23-24; 24:21; 25:9; 27:1-2, 12-13; 28:5; 29:18; 31:7; 52:6).

Then note the same thing seen in a number of the other Prophets (Jeremiah 30:8; Ezekiel 38:14, 18; Hosea 2:16, 18, 21; Joel 3:18; Amos 9:11; Zechariah 2:11; 3:10).

“That day” in the preceding passages, references a time beyond Man’s Day, in “the Lord’s Day,” during which concluding events and judgments surrounding Israel and the nations will occur.  And these events and judgments will occur following Christ’s return and lead into His millennial reign.  This is the reason why the expression, “in that day,” in some Scriptures refers to a time of judgment and in other Scriptures to a time of peace and rest. The latter follows the former, but the former, of necessity, must occur first.

Christians — “In That Day”

Numerous Bible teachers today, it seems, are quick to look at current events and attempt to relate them to Biblical prophecy, particularly events pertaining to Israel and the nations emanating out of Israeli statehood almost seventy years ago, May 14, 1948.

They view events pertaining to Israel, the nation’s land, and the surrounding Gentile nations during these past seventy years and attempt to align certain events with different Old Testament prophecies having to do with God regathering His people back to their land.  And the closing five verses of Amos are often referenced in this respect.

These verses from Amos tell of a time (“in that day” [Amos 9:11]) when God will regather His people back to their land, NEVER to be uprooted again.  But to relate these verses, or really any other verses dealing with Israel’s restoration, to what has been occurring in the Middle East since the spring of 1948 is completely out of line with any Scripture dealing with the subject.

The Jews in the land today (some 6,000,000, about two-fifths of world Jewry) have sought to emancipate themselves apart from their Messiah, leaving an unhealed people in an unhealed land (a house left “desolate” [cf. Daniel 9:27; Matthew 12:43-45; 23:37-39]), in unbelief, before repentance. And, according to the clear teaching of Scripture, these Jews will be uprooted from their land in the middle of the Tribulation, their cities destroyed, and they will either be slain or driven back out among the nations where God will then deal with them, along with the remainder of world Jewry, relative to repentance (cf. Leviticus 26:31-33; Isaiah 6:11-13; Daniel 9:26; Matthew 24:15ff; Luke 21:20ff; Revelation 12:6, 14).

Beyond that, all of this has happened and will happen BEFORE “that day,” seen in Amos 9:11-15 or any other place in Scripture where the subject is dealt with.

In God’s septenary arrangement of His Word, established perfect in the beginning, a person simply CANNOT place events of one day in those of another day.

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Word Document:  In That Day by Arlen Chitwood.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

Lamp Broadcast - In That Day by Arlen L. Chitwood.pdf in pamphlet form designed for printing on letter size paper, both front and back; then folded into pocket size fit.

(For additional information on the Jewish people in the Land of Israel today — that which is about to befall them, along with the remainder of world Jewry — refer to the author’s articles, “How Long, Until…” and “The Woman in Revelation [Revelation 12; 17; 19].”)

Also reference, in this site, Mystery of The Woman BOOK.

To website CONTENTS Page.

From the point of the fall in Genesis 3 to the point of this dominion being realized by man in Revelation 20, all of God’s redemptive purposes in Scripture are seen to move toward this end.  They are all seen to move toward man one day possessing dominion over the earth, in the stead of Satan and his angels.

The Existing Kingdom
Past, Present, and Future

Excerpt from Acts, Between the Gospels and the Epistles in this site.

Satan, in his unfallen state, at a time in eternity past, was placed over the province upon which man presently resides — over the earth.  And a great host of ruling angels were placed in subordinate positions of power and authority with him.

The day came though when Satan became dissatisfied with his appointed position and rebelled against God’s supreme power and authority.  He sought to “exalt” his throne above all the other God-appointed provincial rulers (angels ruling over other provinces [worlds similar to the earth] elsewhere in the universe) and “be like the most High” (Isaiah 14:13-14).

Because of this act, rather than exalting his throne, Satan became disqualified to rule even the province over which he had been placed.  And this necessitated his subsequent removal, with another being appointed to take his place.

But God didn’t immediately act in this respect.  Rather, God allowed Satan to continue holding his position, for a time.

(A principle of biblical government necessitates that an incumbent ruler continue to hold his appointed position until his replacement is not only on the scene but ready to ascend the throne and hold the scepter [something seen in the account of Saul and David in the Books 1 and 2 Samuel].)

Satan’s reign though, following his rebellion against God’s supreme power and authority was quite different than it had been before that time.  Two-thirds of the angels originally holding positions of power and authority over the earth with him refused to have a part in his actions.  Only one-third followed Satan (Revelation 12:4), and this left him with a disrupted power structure in the government of his kingdom, completely out of line with that which God had originally established.  And not only did a ruin of this nature exist in the governmental structure of his kingdom, but the physical state of his kingdom was reduced to a ruined condition as well (Genesis 1:2a).

But the day came when God restored the physical kingdom and created man to replace the incumbent ruler.  The physical creation was restored over a six-day period, and man was created on the sixth day to “have dominion” — the dominion that Satan and his angels possessed (Genesis 1:2-28 [2b]).

Satan, knowing why man had been created, immediately sought a way to bring about man’s disqualification.  And this is what he accomplished through man’s fall, an act that, for the time, prevented man from ascending the throne and which allowed Satan to continue holding the scepter.

Following man’s fall, Satan and his angels ruled over a restored province, though under a curse because of man’s sin (Genesis 3:17-18; cf. Romans 8:19-22).  But God, far from being finished with man at this point, had only begun to work out His plans and purposes as they pertained to man and one ruined province in His kingdom.

Redemption was to be provided in order that man, at a future point in time, could realize the purpose for his creation in the beginning.  Man, a creation quite different than angels, created in the image and likeness of God, was to be redeemed; and, as God originally intended, man was to one day hold the scepter in Satan’s stead (cf. Hebrews 2:5).

The Bible is a book of redemption, and this redemption encompasses far more than just man’s eternal salvation through faith in God’s provided Redeemer.  It encompasses bringing redeemed man back into the position for which he was created.  The purpose surrounding man’s redemption is the same as the purpose surrounding man’s creation in the beginning — “let them have dominion” (Genesis 1:26-28).

And from the point of the fall in Genesis 3 to the point of this dominion being realized by man in Revelation 20, all of God’s redemptive purposes in Scripture are seen to move toward this end.  They are all seen to move toward man one day possessing dominion over the earth, in the stead of Satan and his angels.

The “gifts and calling of God are without repentance [‘without a change of mind’]” (Romans 11:29).  God is not going to change His mind concerning the reason He called man into existence.  Man will, man must, one day hold the scepter, but in God’s time.

In the meantime, Satan and his angels continue to occupy the throne, continuing to rule from a place in the heavens over the earth.  But the day is coming when there will be “war in heaven.”  Michael and his angels will fight against Satan and his angels, and Satan and his angels will be “cast out,” anticipating Man — namely Christ and His co-heirs — taking the kingdom and occupying these positions, exercising power and authority over the earth (Revelation 12:4, 7-10; cf. Revelation 2:26-27; 11:15; 19:11-20:6).

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Word Document:  The Existing Kingdom.docx which is SAFE to open and print.

See Why did God Create Man? and Man Created for What Reason? in this site for additional commentary.

Also From Acts to the Epistles BOOK, in this site.

To website CONTENTS Page.

Note how “a mountain” is used in a metaphorical respect in Isaiah 2:1-4 to depict not only Christ’s kingdom but lesser kingdoms on earth in that coming day — “the mountain of the Lord’s house [Christ’s kingdom] shall be established in the top of the mountains [all the subordinate world kingdoms, referred to in this respect later in the verse through the use of ‘hills’].”

METAPHORS, Some
Excerpts from Those on His Left Hand and The Seven Parables of Matthew 13.

Subjects:

Those on His Left Hand

Being Hurt of The Second Death

That which is in view concerning a non-overcoming Christian one day being hurt of the second death following decisions and determinations at the judgment seat, as previously seen, is explained later in this same book.  The second death for the non-overcomer is having a “part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone” (Revelation 21:8); and having a part in the lake of fire is explained by and through God’s dealings with the unsaved in the previous chapter as being “cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:15).

And seeing individuals cast into “the furnace of fire” in Matthew 13:42, 50 is simply another way of expressing the same thing.

(The parables in Matthew 13 deal with the Kingdom of the Heavens and fruit bearing, not with eternal salvation.  Thus, the subject matter has to do with the saved, not with the unsaved.

Further, in Matthew 13:1, Christ going out of “the house” [a reference to Israel] and down by “the seaside” [a reference to the Gentiles], the one new manin Christ” [about to be brought into existence at the time these parables were given] is seen throughout the first four parables.  In this respect, those gathered out of Christ’s kingdom, which “offend” and “practice lawlessness,” who are cast into a furnace of fire, can only be identified as saved individuals.

Also, this casting into a furnace of fire in Matthew 13:42, 50 occurs before the Millennium.  The unsaved cast into the lake of fire in Revelation 20:15 occurs following the Millennium.  They are not the same.)

But is the second death, being cast into the lake of fire, something that will be carried out in a literal sense?  Or, is Scripture dealing with metaphors at this point?  And, if the latter, what about the unsaved being cast into the lake of fire at the end of the Millennium, in Revelation 20:11-15?

If one is literal, would not the other have to be literal as well?  Or, if one is metaphorical, would not the other have to be metaphorical as well?

Allowing Scripture to Interpret Scripture

In John 15:6 and Hebrews 6:8, saved individuals are spoken of in a metaphorical sense, where a burning with fire is referenced.  And the context both places has to do with either bearing fruit or not bearing fruit, which is exactly the same thing that is seen in the Matthew 13 parables.  Or, as the matter is expressed in Revelation 2; 3, it has to do with either overcoming or being overcome.

And the negative side of the matter is expressed at least two other ways in Scripture — being cast into Gehenna (a reference to the place of refuse outside the city walls of Jerusalem at this time; Matthew 5:22, 29-30; 23:15, 33) or being cast into outer darkness (Matthew 8:12; 22:13; 25:30).

Overcoming or not overcoming and being unhurt or being hurt by the second death in Revelation 2:11 is expressed a slightly different way in Romans 8:13:

For if you [a reference to ‘brethren’ in Romans 8:12] live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

Whether Gehenna or outer darkness in Matthew, a burning with fire in John and Hebrews, being cast into a furnace or lake of fire in Matthew and Revelation, or suffering death or being hurt by the second death in Romans and Revelation, different facets of exactly the same thing are in view.

All of these are used in contexts showing that they have to do with saved people in relation to fruit bearing and the kingdom.

By comparing Scripture with Scripture, it is plain that these are simply different ways of expressing the same thing.  And since a literal casting into outer darkness, Gehenna, or a furnace or lake of fire could not possibly be in view (for these different places could not possibly be looked upon as referring to the same place in a literal sense), it is evident that metaphors are being used throughout.

But relative to the unsaved and the lake of fire, this is simply not expressed other ways in Scripture as it is with the saved, leaving no room for any thought other than understanding the matter as literal, not metaphorical.

Aside from the preceding, it is clear that all Christians, faithful and unfaithful alike, will be in the kingdom.  This is seen in the type in Genesis 18; 19.  Both Abraham and Lot, in the final analysis, are seen on the mount (a “mountain” in Scripture signifies a kingdom).  But note the stark difference in the place that each occupied.

Abraham stood before the Lord, where he had always stood (Genesis 18:22; 19:27).  Lot though found himself in a place separate from the Lord, in a place where he also had always stood (Genesis 19:1, 30).

“Everlasting [‘Age-Lasting’] Fire”

Then He will also say to those on the left hand, “Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting [age-lasting] fire, prepared for the devil and his angels. (Matthew 25:41)

As has been shown, similar verses to the preceding are used different places in the New Testament relative to non-overcoming Christians.  And, with this in mind, understanding how these verses are used, the matter concerning how that which is stated in Matthew 25:41 relative to those on Christ’s left hand is to be understood should be evident without further comment.

(Why does Scripture associate non-overcoming Christians with the lake of fire in relation to Christ’s millennial reign, in the manner previously seen [which would be the same for those on Christ’s left hand in Matthew 25:41]?  The answer would be the same as the reason why Scripture associates the unsaved with the lake of fire throughout the endless ages of eternity, following the Millennium.

The lake of fire was not prepared for man.  Rather, it was prepared “for the devil and his angels” [Matthew 25:41].  It was prepared for those who had rejected God’s supreme power and authority, as Satan sought to acquire power and authority above that which had been delegated [Isaiah 14:13-14].  Thus, in this respect, the lake of fire is connected with regality.

And man, created to replace Satan and his angels, finds his connection with the lake of fire on exactly the same basis.  Saved man, ignoring the very reason for his salvation [which is regal], will find himself associated with the lake of fire during the Millennium [an association connected with all that the existence of the lake of fire implies].  And unsaved man, ignoring salvation and the reason for man’s creation [which, again, is regal], will find himself associated with the lake of fire throughout the endless ages following the Millennium [an association connected with all that the existence of the lake of fire implies].)

The Seven Parables of Matthew 13

THE FURNACE OF FIRE

Only one group of individuals — though separated into two classes — could possibly be in view through the use of the expressions, “good” and “bad,” or “just” and “wicked” (Matthew 13:48-49). All had been removed from the sea; all had been removed from the Gentiles. Thus, no room could possibly exist for an inclusion of unsaved individuals in this parable. By the very nature of the subject matter (the kingdom of the heavens) and those being dealt with in this parable (those removed from the sea), only the saved could possibly be in view.

And, viewing that to which this parable refers, these saved individuals are seen being dealt with on the basis of prior decisions and determinations — decisions and determinations having previously been made at the judgment seat. And these decisions and determinations, emanating from the judgment seat, will have been based on prior faithfulness to one’s calling (judgment will be on the basis of “works,” but the works being judged will have resulted from faithfulness, or unfaithfulness [1 Corinthians 3:12-15; cf. Hebrews 11:17-19, 31; James 2:21-25]).

But seeing the saved alone being dealt with in this parable presents major problems for numerous Christians, for some of those in the parable are cast into “the furnace of fire.” And these same Christians, who would never consider thinking along the lines of Christians being cast into such a place, are invariably forced into an erroneous position, resulting in an erroneous interpretation. They are forced into the position of seeing saved and unsaved individuals (“good” and “bad”) being dealt with in the parable, along with seeing these individuals being dealt with in relation to eternal life or eternal damnation.

The preceding though is simply not what Scripture has to say about the matter. Scripture is clear that the parable deals with the saved alone, and these saved individuals are dealt with in relation to the coming kingdom. And the fact that those described as “bad” and “wicked” are cast into “the furnace of fire” must be understood within this framework. It must be understood within the framework of both those who are being dealt with and that which is being dealt with — Christians, and the kingdom.

Thus, to deal with this parable on the basis of eternal verities, with the unsaved being cast into the lake of fire, is completely outside the scope of the subject matter seen in any of these seven parables. Such a teaching, derived from these parables, is both textually and contextually wrong. Any thought of dealing with any of these parables after this fashion, from a Scriptural standpoint, could not even be open for discussion.

If the text is dealt with in a literal sense, apart from metaphors, only one possible conclusion can be reached. At the end of the age a segment of the saved, a segment of Christians, are going to be cast into what is called in this parable, “the furnace of fire.” And that is exactly what Christ had previously stated within His explanation of the parable of the wheat and tares:

The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness,

And will cast them [i.e., the offensive and lawless ones, the tares in this parable, those doing the works of Satan] into the furnace of fire: there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth”. (Matthew 13:41-42)

Or, note the same thing in the parable of the dragnet:

So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just,

and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. (Matthew 13:49-50).

So, exactly what is being dealt with through these two references to “the furnace of fire”?

Should the expression be looked upon in a literal sense, referring to an actual furnace of fire? Or, is this a continuation of the metaphorical language seen earlier in the parables, describing something related to but apart from a literal understanding of the reference?

When a person begins studying related Scripture having to do with “Gehenna,” “outer darkness [lit., ‘the outer darkness’]” and “the lake of fire” he will find exactly the same teaching as seen in these two parables. That which is seen in Matthew 13:42, 50 is not something peculiar to the parable of the wheat and tares and the parable of the dragnet. Rather, it is merely part of the same teaching seen so many places elsewhere in the New Testament (cf. John 15:1-6; 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10; Hebrews 6:7-9; 10:26-31; Jude 1:20-23).

In this respect, note how teachings concerning Gehenna, the outer darkness, and the lake of fire appear in Scripture.

1) Gehenna, the Outer Darkness

Gehenna is an Anglicized Greek word (Geenna in the Greek text) used twelve times in the New Testament. The word appears eleven times in the three synoptic gospels (Matthew 5:22, 29-30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15, 33; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; Luke 12:5) and once in the epistle of James (James 3:6).

Christ alone used the word in the gospel accounts. And He always used the word in contexts having to do with entrance into or exclusion from the kingdom of the heavens.

Then, in James, the word appears in a text having to do with the tongue — “. . .it [the tongue] is set on fire of hell [‘Gehenna’].” And, though the word is used in a somewhat different sense in James, it appears within a context having to do with the saving of the soul and the coming kingdom (James 1:12, 21; 2:5, 14-26; 5:7-8, 19-20).

Gehenna (Geenna) is the Greek word for Hinnom from the Hebrew text of the Old Testament. Hinnom was the name given to a valley south of Jerusalem during Joshua’s day, named for the son of a person whose name was “Hinnom” (Joshua 15:8; 18:16).

And, though this valley was used at times as a place where human sacrifices were offered during Old Testament days (2 Kings 23:10; Jeremiah 7:31), the valley was no more than the place where the refuse from Jerusalem was discarded at the time Christ was on earth.

(The word, Hinnom, has simply been transliterated in the English text of the Old Testament; but the same thing has not been done with Gehenna [Geenna, for Hinnom] in most English texts of the New Testament. Rather, in most versions, Gehenna [Geenna] has been translated “hell” each of the twelve times that it appears in the New Testament, resulting in confusion.)

Thus, Gehenna, at the time Christ and James used the word, was simply the name of the place where those in Jerusalem discarded their refuse. Even dead bodies (criminals, etc.) were, at times, cast into this place; and the fires burned continuously.

In this respect, Christ was doing no more than referencing a place where the refuse from the city of Jerusalem was discarded. And James was associating the misuse of the tongue with this same place.

Remaining within the gospel accounts, being cast into Gehenna always carries an identical association and meaning. Textually, in the gospels, being cast into Gehenna is always associated with separation from regality within Christ’s kingdom. It matters not which of the eleven references a person checks, he will find exactly the same thing each time. Gehenna is never used in the gospel accounts in a context dealing with the unsaved and eternal verities. Rather, the word always appears in texts set within contexts having to do solely with the saved i