April 9, 2008 ©Homer Kizer

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Commentary — From the Margins

Chapter Three: A New War Scroll

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In February 2004, in the Shaffer House at Old Bedford Village, Bedford, Pennsylvania, I wrote A New War Scroll, an e-book length essay that marked a transition in understanding from using typology to reread prophecy to using typology as prophecy. Chapter One appeared as the commentary dated March 27, 2008. Chapter Two appeared as the commentary dated April 2, 2008. Chapter three is here presented:

 

Chapter Three

 

The Apostle Paul asked and answered the question, “Are we to sin because we are not under the law but under grace? By no means” (Rom 6:15) … sin is the transgression of the law (1 John 3:4); it is lawlessness. And grace is, simply, the mantle or cloak or garment (Gal 3:27) of Jesus’ righteousness that covers a person who has been drawn from this world by the Father (John 6:44) and called to be a disciple of Christ Jesus (John 15:16). As a cloaked spacecraft in the Star Trek television series was invisible, grace makes the lawlessness of a person invisible to the Father and to angels because that lawlessness has been covered by the blood or righteousness of Christ. This blood or righteousness is, according to Jesus, the “‘blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins’” (Matt 26:28). So there is a covenant involved, a covenant that establishes the basis for Jesus’ ongoing covering of His disciples with His blood or righteousness.

With pedagogical redundancy, let it be said again: grace is, simply, Jesus’ blood and righteousness covering the transgressions of Israel. Grace is not unmerited pardon, for at Calvary Jesus paid the death sentence for every sin committed by Israel here on earth. There was no pardoning of these sins. There was no waving of the death penalty. The righteous demands of the law required that a life be lost for every transgression of the law, and these righteous demands were fully satisfied by Jesus, having lived without sin, dying as the acceptable substitute for every Israelite in a manner analogous to how innocent bulls and goats had died on the altar as substitutes for the lives of the sinning nation.

If the Law and the Prophets were abolished, there would have been no reason for Jesus to have died at Calvary: abolishing of the law would have removed its righteous demands. No life, innocent or guilty, would have been required for the demands of the law would have ended with the abolishing of the law. But because Jesus did not climb down from the cross alive, the Law and the Prophets continue in force, with transgressions of the law requiring that a life be given and with that life given in this physical realm being Jesus’ as His death transcends time. He is the reality of every lamb, every goat, every turtledove, every ox sacrificed to God by Israel, and because He continues to pay the righteous demands of the law in this world for the sins of Israel in this world, both the law continues as do the giving of sacrifices.

Jesus covers, not pardons, the sins of Israel through continuation of the covenant the Logos as the Spokesperson for YHWH made with Israel when death angels passed over the land of Egypt during, probably, the reign of Pharaoh Ahmose in the 15th-Century BCE. A new covenant will replace the covenant made with the fathers of Israel when “I AM” [linguistically singular] took the nation of Israel by the hand to lead the nation out of Egypt. The new covenant does not replace the Sinai covenant (Ex chaps 20–24) or the Moab covenant (Deut chaps 29–32), but replaces the Passover covenant, now continued through Jesus being the paschal Lamb of God, a Lamb appropriate to the size of the household of God, a Lamb selected and penned in Jerusalem on the 1oth day of the first month and sacrificed on the 14th day. It is by this by Passover covenant that death angels passed over the houses of Israel in Egypt, and it is by this covenant that Jesus’ blood is poured out for the forgiveness of sins (Matt 26:28).

There is no provision in the Sinai covenant for forgiveness of sin; nor is there any provision in the Moab covenant for forgiveness. But the annual renewing of the Passover covenant, which now includes washing feet and taking the sacraments of bread and wine, has as its central tenet the passing over or covering of sins through the blood of a paschal lamb.

A covenant made with the flesh extends from cutting to cutting, or from the shedding of blood to the shedding of blood, and such a covenant will be a shadow of a heavenly or spiritual covenant that is ratified by better sacrifices (Heb 9:23). The covenant God made with Noah about never again baptizing the world with water was ratified with the setting of a bow (rainbow) in the sky (Gen 9:13), a better sacrifice than blood; so this covenant is an eternal covenant. Likewise, the covenant made between God and the mixed circumcised and uncircumcised children of Israel on the plains of Moab (Deut 29:1)—the covenant by which Israel is promised circumcised hearts (Deut 30:6) upon demonstration of faith (vv 1–2)—was ratified with a song (Deut chap 32), a better sacrifice than blood; so this is an eternal covenant. But the marriage covenant made between physically circumcised Israel and YHWH, Israel’s Elohim, its God—the covenant by which Israel becomes the holy nation of God (Ex 19:5-6)—was ratified by the blood of oxen thrown against the altar made at Sinai, and on the people (Ex 24:5-8). This blood was like that of a woman’s hymen broken on the marriage bed; so this covenant is made with the flesh and is not an eternal covenant. However, this covenant remained in force until either Israel died as a single person dies, or until God died as a man dies. Only the death of one or the other would end this covenant, for the hymen is not twice torn and its blood twice shed. In the beginning, a marriage covenant would end with the shedding of blood at death.

·         The Passover covenant made between “I AM” and Israel, mediated by Moses, was ratified by the blood of paschal lambs and by the lives of Egyptians given as ransom for Israel (Isa 43:3). This is a covenant made with the flesh, and this covenant is a shadow and copy of the new covenant.

·         The Sinai covenant made between YHWH, Israel’s Elohim, and Israel, mediated by Moses, was ratified by the blood of oxen splashed on the altar and on the people. This is a covenant made with the flesh, and this covenant is a shadow and copy of the covenant made with Abraham by which Yah promised to make of Abraham a single great nation (Gen 12:2).

·         The covenant made with Abraham at Haran was ratified by Abraham’s journey of faith from his father’s house to Canaan. This was not a covenant made in the flesh, but a covenant ratified by a better sacrifice.

·         Abraham’s faith caused him to believe God that his offspring would be like stars, and this faith was counted to him as righteousness (Gen 15:6). Thus, Abraham covered his sins with his faith and his righteousness so that the Lord could testify about Abraham that he had obeyed God’s voice and kept God’s charge, His commandments, His statutes, and His laws (Gen 26:5).

·         The Lord [YHWH] had an additional covenant with Abraham [then Abram] that was ratified by circumcision of foreskins (Gen chap 17): this was a covenant made in the flesh, and as such, this covenant was a shadow and copy of a heavenly covenant. The son of promise that came from this covenant and that Isaac represented was a shadow and type of a spiritual Isaac (Gal 4:21–31).

·         The additional covenant made with the children of Israel on the plains of Moab (Deut 29:1), mediated by Moses but not to be implemented until after Israel was dispersed because of the nation’s lawlessness and until after Israel returned to the Lord by faith, was ratified by the second song of Moses, a better sacrifice. This is a heavenly covenant, and this is the covenant which the glorified Jesus is now the mediator and the covenant to which better promises were added.

The Passover covenant and the Sinai covenant and the covenant by which Abraham receives the breath of Yah [the addition of the /ah/ radical to Abram’s name discloses that both Abram and Sarai received the same holy spirit or divine breath that King David had]—all were made with the flesh and were slated from their inauguration to be replaced by heavenly or spiritual covenants, with both the prophet Jeremiah and the writer of Hebrews disclosing the terms of the spiritual replacement for the Passover covenant, the first of the covenants mediated by Moses.

The Apostle Paul wrote that the barrier of physical circumcision was abolished so that Gentiles could be brought near to the covenants of promise in the Law of Moses (Eph 2:11–22) … Paul doesn’t write that the Law of Moses (the Torah) was abolished. Only foolish and lawless Christians would make such a ridiculous assertion. Rather, he writes that circumcision of the flesh is no longer the circumcision that matters. The prophet Jeremiah had written,

Behold the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will punish all those who are circumcised merely in the flesh—Egypt, Judah, Edom, the sons of Ammon, Moab, and all who dwell in the desert who cut the corners of their hair, for all of these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel is uncircumcised in heart. (Jer 9:25–26)

All of the house of Israel was uncircumcised of heart when Israel went into captivity. And nothing changed when Israel was dispersed. To be circumcised of heart, Israel needed to turn to God when in Assyria or in Babylon and begin to obey His voice in all that He had commanded Israel on the plains of Moab with all of the nation’s heart and mind (Deut 30:1–2). This does not sound difficult. But when Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold and commanded all peoples to worship this image, with the notable exceptions of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (Dan chap 3), Israel worshiped the Babylonian king’s idol. Israel was an idolatrous nation that sought its welfare in Babylon’s welfare (Jer 29:7) without realizing that to serve the king of Babylon, Israel had to maim itself and become spiritual eunuchs as Daniel and the other young Jewish men were physical eunuchs, castrated by a king that formed the lively representation of Satan, the devil. No sons of God would be born to Israel while the nation remained uncircumcised of heart in Babylon. Thus, when in a far land, Israel never turned to God to obey His voice in all He commanded in the Moab covenant even though a remnant of Israel as a slave people returned to Jerusalem to build a house of God for Cyrus, the Persian king.

The plans that God has for Israel’s good (Jer 29:11) would not be implemented as long as Israel remained a nation uncircumcised of heart. And the days came in the 1st-Century CE when the Lord [YHWH] punished nations uncircumcised of heart—

The schism that separated the 1st-Century CE sect of the Nazarenes from the sects of the Pharisees and the Sadducees was over circumcision, which remains at the center of the schism between endtime Sabbatarian Christians and rabbinical Judaism. For an Israelite to be circumcised of heart, since Calvary the person must be born of spirit, receiving actual life in the heavenly realm through the birth of a new creature in the same tent of flesh. And the person who keeps the precepts of the law by faith will have his or her uncircumcision counted as circumcision (Rom 2:26): this person who had an uncircumcised heart will receive a circumcised heart (Rom 2:28–29; Col 2:11). Whether the flesh is or isn’t circumcised doesn’t now matter although that will have changed when the Millennium begins (Ezek 44:9). So circumcision of the heart is available to physically uncircumcised Gentiles as well as to women.

Bridging the schism between Sabbatarian disciples and Judaism is not really possible until the second Passover liberation of Israel; for the person uncircumcised of heart cannot understand the things of God. This person may want to serve God, as the Hindi wants to serve his or her deities, but this person cannot grasp what it means to think spiritually. Thus, for this person endtime prophecies about Israel can be only about the physical nation. Jerusalem is only the city David captured from the Jebusites. The temple is a building of stone and wood. The first temple was built by Solomon and lasted until destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar. The second temple was built by Zerubbabel and continued until it was destroyed by Roman legions in 70 CE, and Shimeon Bar Kokhba attempted but did not build the third temple.

Islam is composed of peoples the prophet Jeremiah named as uncircumcised of heart. The house of Israel was and still is uncircumcised of heart, and unfortunately, almost all of Christendom today is rebellious and uncircumcised of heart—and the person who is uncircumcised of heart will only think physically. And it is here where the next battle begins between the sons of light and the sons of darkness.

Although circumcision was the focus of the schism between the sect of the Nazarenes and the sect of the Pharisees, the construct that originated the schism was that Yah, the Creator of all that has been made, entered His creation as His only Son and died as a man at Calvary. For rabbinical Judaism, the derivative sect from the Pharisees, all of the essence of God cannot fit into a man. For them, a God who can die as a man is too small of a deity to be the Creator of all that is. God is bigger than any man. So for Judaism the premise upon which the Jesus Movement began is inherently false. Judaism does not, and indeed, cannot accept that its God died as a man at Calvary.

Conciliar Christendom, like Judaism, does not believe that the Creator of that is entered His creation and died as a man. Through a linguistic two-step, conciliar Christendom dances around the Creator dying as a man by adding a partner, the Holy Spirit, and flying the flag of a triune deity that has one of three personhoods entering the creation as a fully man, fully God being, of which only the fully man portion can and did die. This thoroughly Greek conception of God forms the foundation for the Trojan horse the philosophers of Achaia used to win an empire from Latium, an empire that hoplite armies and Greek triremes could not defeat on land or by sea.

Arian Christendom, like its cousins, holds that Jesus was a created being; that at best He is now of a similar substance as the Father, but He is definitely not the Creator of all that is. Islam holds that Jesus was a great prophet, a man born as a man and undergoing the same afterlife as other prophets of Allah. And these three—conciliar Christianity, Arian Christianity, and Islam—actually support Judaism’s contention that physically circumcised Israel remains married to its deity to this day although they may well deny what their apologetics argue.

If Judaism remains married to the Creator of all that is, what sort of a wife has Judaism been to this God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? And what sort of a husband has the Creator been for Rabbinical Judaism since Calvary?

Where was the Creator of all that is when cattle cars disgorged the elders of the physically circumcised nation into the gas chambers at Auschwitz, or the children of the nation at Dachau? It would seem the Jews were a cursed people at Buchenwald, that God had turned His face away from this accursed people as He promised He would do under the terms of the second covenant (Deut 32:19–20). He saw what their end would be—and they saw what their end would be if they continued to trust in the fairness of this world and in the goodness of themselves. So they armed themselves when, following WWII, they flowed as a flood tide into the Palestine protectorate. Not since Rome’s Tenth Legion fought Shimeon Bar Kokhba in the 2nd-Century CE had the world seen a “fighting Jew,” but if they waited for the anointed one [moshiach] any longer they would all be dead so the world has since seen what Jew with a Sten gun can do.  

Has Judaism been a faithful wife, loving her husband will all of her heart and mind, loyal to her husband, forsaking all others for him? Or has Judaism, like the house of Israel and the house of Judah before—like the nation that left Egypt, or that nation’s children—worshiped the creation rather than its Creator? Judaism looks for its Messiah, a man associated with a star; a man who will reestablish the Sanhedrin; a man who will return all of Israel to the nation’s homeland; a man who will cause all of the world to keep the commandments; a man who will rebuild the temple and restore the sacrifices; a man who will bring peace to this world, but Judaism rejects Jesus as the anointed one [moshiach], for with their eyes, Judaism cannot see where Jesus fulfilled any of those things that the messiah would do. And this is as it should be for Judaism was a woman put away when the nation was sent into captivity. God sent first the northern house of Israel into Assyrian captivity, or into the lively representation of Death. Then He sent the southern house of Judah to Babylon or into the captivity of this world a long time ago. And the nations never returned—oh, a remnant of Israel left Babylon by the decree of Cyrus, king of Persia, to build for him the house of God in Jerusalem. But Cyrus did not direct that a remnant of Israel build a house for God for Israel’s pleasure; nor did God return Israel to Judea because the nation had, by faith, turned to Him with hearts and minds. And this is a major point that needs remembered: the Moab covenant promises a second Passover-type liberation of Israel, a gathering by God of Israel from wherever the nation has been scattered. The return of Israel to the Promised Land of God’s rest will not be by military means. Weapons forged of steel will not be needed. Such weapons pertain to the shadow and to physical circumcision. They are of this world, and the war that the sons of light will fight is in that portion of the heavenly realm within the bottomless pit, or within the tzimtzum.

For sons of light, there is sadness that cannot be fully expressed by what has happened: Jesus strictly charged His disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ (Matt 16:20), the moshiach. He told them, “‘These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled’” (Luke 24:44), but He had to supernaturally open their minds so that they could understand Scripture (v. 45). How are those whose minds are not so opened to understand Scripture? If the minds of His disciples, after being with Him from three and a half years plus the forty days, required being supernaturally opened, it is not possible for the minds (even the best minds alive) to understand the things of God. Everything I write will be foolishness, fiction, prose falling into a hybrid literary genre that mingles apologetics with imagination to resurrect Christendom’s abandoned roots.

Jesus acknowledged to His disciples that everything written about the anointed one, moshiach, had to be fulfilled, and Jesus knew that everything was not fulfilled in the 1st-Century, nor yet fulfilled today. Everything will be fulfilled. The basis has been laid. The marriage covenant made at Sinai had to be broken because of Israel’s faithlessness. And the Creator of all that is had to die as a man to end this covenant, for physically circumcised Israel was still loved for the sake of their ancestors. It is still loved, but its hearts are still uncircumcised.

Today, the foundation has been laid for grafting natural Israel back onto the Root of Righteousness although the nation will vigorously resist righteousness while professing otherwise … there is no righteousness in lawlessness. There is no righteousness within either conciliar or Arian Christendom, both of which teach disciples to continue in sin. There is no righteousness inherent in Islam. In all three, there is “worldliness,” with focus on those things that can be seen by human eyes. All three mistake shadows for substance. And rabbinical Judaism’s righteousness is as a menstrual rag, a bloody sanitary napkin that has caught sloughed away life, the eternal life imbedded in the covenants of promise made with the nation God led by the hand for forty years.

The underlying construct of Christendom is that the God who created all that is (John 1:3) entered His creation as His only Son (John 3:16), the man Jesus of Nazareth (John 1:14), and was baptized by John, at which time He received a second life when the divine Breath of the Father descended as a dove, lit and remained on Him, thereby fulfilling all righteousness (Matt 3:15–17). Jesus was born of Mary as the Son of the Creator of all that is and He became the Son of the Father when the divine breath of the Father descended upon Him as a dove. He was then, by birth, the only Son of Theos [2,ÎH], and He became the firstborn Son of Theon [2,`<] when the divine breath of the Father [B<,Ø:" 2,@Ø] descended upon Him as a dove. He then had two lives, one that came to the flesh from the breath that entered through His nose and mouth, and He had a second life or nature that come through receipt of the spirit of God. He was a man, fully a man and only a man until the divine breath of the Father descended like a dove and lit on Him. He was not born of Mary fully God, but as a human infant. If He were not a human infant, He would not be the Son of Theos, but Theos Himself. So to say that Jesus was born fully man and fully God is blasphemy! To teach that He was born as fully man and fully God is heresy!!

The glorified Jesus told His disciples, “‘Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high’” (Luke 24:46–49). … Repentance and forgiveness of sin in Jesus’ name was to be proclaimed to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem: it was proclaimed from Jerusalem, but when it left that physical city the proclamation of repentance and forgiveness was badly garbled and grievous distorted, not by Paul, but by all those who came from Jerusalem as former Pharisees, and by those who left Paul in Asia (2 Tim 1:15), and by those in Corinth (1 Cor 3:1–3), and by those in Galatia (Gal 1:6), and even by the Jews of Ephesus (Acts 20:18–21).

Jesus warned His disciples not to deceive (Matt 24:4 – read this in Greek); yet somehow a great many converts in the mid 1st-Century CE were deceived and were taught a false gospel. And today, Paul’s warnings about a false gospel are used to justify and to teach a false gospel in an upside-down world. The Adversary won’t win, but he certainly had success in marginalizing and suppressing the early sons of light.

It is small wonder that Christendom has had such a difficult time converting Jews: Jesus said not to think that He came to abolish the Law and the Prophets (Matt 5:17); yet visible Christendom teaches that Jesus abolished the law. Jesus said not to think that He came to bring peace, that He came to bring a sword (Matt 10:34); yet visible Christendom teaches that Jesus came to bring peace and goodwill to men. Jesus said not to tell anyone that He was the Christ (Matt 16:20); yet visible Christendom makes its living telling all who will hear that Jesus is the Christ. Jesus said that many are called to the wedding feast, but few will be chosen (Matt 22:14); yet visible Christendom teaches all a person must do to be saved is mumble the “sinner’s prayer,” inviting Jesus into the person’s heart. What “truth” does visible Christendom teach? If everyone who is of the truth listens to Jesus’ voice (John 18:37), then by extension, there is no one within visible Christendom who is of the truth, for no one can have heard Jesus’ voice and teach the religious junk that visible Christendom teaches. No one is that deaf, or that stupid. It is through willful rebellion that the sons of darkness in the many synagogues of Satan teach what is spewed forth from pulpits on Sunday mornings.

What is to be done with spiritual bastards like John Chrysostom, who knew that the Antioch church kept the Passover on the 14th of the first month into and probably through all of the 2nd-Century, that even the Roman Church was keeping the Feast of Weeks (Pentecost); yet at Antioch in 387 CE, wanting to wipe out the holy days, he railed against Christians who still kept “Jewish feast days.” He did much more harm to Christianity than any good he might have done. He was and he will be remembered for a while in the future as a false teacher, a deceitful workman, a minister of the prince of this world. And men like him represented and still represent Christianity to Judaism; so that is cause for great sadness by all who are genuine disciples.

The problem with Jesus being moshiach is the problem rabbinical Judaism identifies: Jesus did not come to fulfill all prophecies about the Messiah in the 1st-Century CE. He came to die. He came to end the marriage covenant made at Sinai. He came to abolish the offense of physical circumcision so that all nations could come to God and be born as sons. He did not come to bring peace—He will do this when He comes again. He did not come to recover Israel from wherever the nation has been scattered—He will do this when He comes again. He did not come to build a physical temple—He is today building a spiritual temple from living stones, and He will bring this temple with Him when He comes again. The coming of moshiach is a much larger event than rabbinical Judaism teaches.

As Judaism contends that the Creator is much too large to come as a man, moshiach is much too large to come only as a man. Yes, moshiach comes as a man: He did this when He was born of the virgin Mary. He will now come as the firstborn Son of the Most High, the Host of the heavens, and He will gather Israel even from death. He will bring peace by changing “human nature,” a received nature and presently the nature of the Adversary. As King Nebuchadnezzar had his human nature taken from him and for seven years had the nature of an ox, moshiach will take the rebellious and lawless nature of the Adversary away from human beings and give to humankind His nature and His mind through baptizing the world in Spirit (Joel 2:28) as the world was baptized in water and unto death in the days of Noah. He will baptize the world into life, and He will fulfill everything written about moshiach. And this is why Jesus strictly charged his disciples not to tell anyone He was the Christ.

John baptized Israel unto repentance; yet John never told anyone that he was the Christ. He expressly refuted any claim to being the Christ. So disciples do not need to proclaim that Jesus is the Christ to baptize repentant sinners and then quietly teach them the oracles of God … we must walk carefully here so misunderstandings cannot take deep root: when Jesus told His disciples that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem (Luke 24:47), He also told His disciples to remain in Jerusalem until they were clothed with power from on high (v. 49). And on that day of Pentecost, the first disciples were clothed with power from on high.

Luke records, “And more than ever believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women, so that they even carried out the sick into the streets and laid them on cots and mats, that as Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on some of them. The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all healed” (Acts 5:14–16). Plus, Luke writes of Paul, “And God was doing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, so that even handkerchiefs or aprons that had touched his skin were carried away to the sick, and their diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them” (Acts 19:11).

Certainly both Peter and Paul were clothed with power from on high—and anything less than having the shadow of a person heal, or a cloth that touches the skin of a person heals is evidence that the person has not been clothed with power from on high.

·         The person who has been clothed with power from on high has use of the Holy Spirit in a manner analogous to the power Jesus had.

·         Both Peter and Paul were clothed with power from on high.

·         After Peter’s and Paul’s death—and possibly, later, John’s death—no one has been clothed with power from on high.

·         The two witnesses will be clothed with power from on high.

·         Between Peter and Paul in the 1st-Century and the two witnesses in the 21st-Century, no one was clothed with power from on high.

Because no one has been clothed with power from on high between Peter and the two witnesses—from the mid 1st-Century until the early 21st-Century—no one was to leave Jerusalem

·         Since Calvary, Jerusalem has been a city with theological coordinates, not geographical coordinates.

  Heavenly Jerusalem will come to earth adorned as a bride (Rev 21:2). She is the city that marries the Christ, moshiach. She is the temple built on the foundation the Apostle Paul laid (1 Cor 3:10–11). Disciples are this temple (1 Cor 3:16–17; 2 Cor 6:16), the heavenly city of Jerusalem—and this is the knowledge that came from Jesus when He opened the minds of His disciples shortly before they were clothed with power from on high.

The visible Christian Church, conciliar and Arian, has been proclaiming that Jesus is the Messiah to sons of disobedience to whom the Father has not yet revealed knowledge by having drawn the person from this world. Without spiritual understanding and without being clothed with power from on high, visible Christendom has presumptuously taught that Jesus is the Messiah. And natural Israel has rightfully rejected the gospel as taught by visible Christendom.

The Father gave to Peter knowledge that Jesus was the Christ a short while before Peter was clothed with power from on high; and still, Jesus had to open the minds of His disciples before they understood the Scriptures … have either the Father or the Son opened the minds of those sons of darkness who transgress the commandments every Sunday morning? Has everything written in the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms about Jesus been fulfilled? Has the Body of Christ suffered and on the third day risen from the dead? Can the resurrection from death after three days of only the Head of the Christ fulfill everything written in the Law and the Prophets about the Messiah? No it cannot. Both Judaism and Christendom have been without the spiritual understanding that the Father gave to Peter and that the glorified Jesus gave to His first disciples.

Although the underlying construct of Christendom that the Creator of all that is entered His creation as His only Son cannot be proof-tested by materialistic inquiry and is thus outside the bounds of scientific discovery, the internal claims made by gospel writers state that this construct cannot be understood or accepted by non-disciples, meaning that neither by scientific means nor by desire can a person know that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob entered His creation as His only Son. This underlying construct must be accepted on faith—and will not be accepted until a person receives a second birth through receipt of life coming from the breath of the Father in a manner analogous to how the divine breath of the Father visibly lit and remained on the man Jesus of Nazareth. A Catch-22 type condition exists. Before a person can understand or accept the construct, the person must receive a second birth and life. Therefore, this construct that underlies Christendom is inherently divisive, separating those truly born of spirit from those who have not yet been so born, with those not yet born of Spirit absolutely unable to grasp or understand or accept what seems logical and reasonable to those born of spirit.

The evidence that those who have not been truly born of spirit—the person not born of spirit is hostile to God and will not, indeed, cannot keep the commandments of God (Rom 8:7)—are unable to understand the things of God is what visible Christendom, both conciliar and Arian, teaches about the nature of God. And joining with visible Christendom is rabbinical Judaism and all of Islam … on one side of a rift stands all human beings who have only the life they received from their ancestral father, the first Adam. On the other side of the rift stand those human beings, few in number, who have received a second life from their spiritual Father, the Most High God. No human being is not on one side or the other, for being born of spirit is an absolute.

But there are sons of darkness on both sides—

Unfortunately, many who claim to be born again or born anew have only the life they received from their ancestral father; so the Apostle Paul disclosed a revealing construct that establishes whether a person has been born of spirit: the person who has not been born of spirit is hostile to God, does not submit to God’s Law, and cannot submit to keeping the Law (again, Rom 8:7). There is, however, the problem of born of spirit disciples who have voluntarily returned to sin (Rom 6:12–13, 16): they populate the highways and byways, the roads taken and not taken of this world by being the many called but not chosen (Matt 22:14). They profess love for Jesus, but they will not walk as He walked. They sing praises to Jesus, but they continue to live as gentiles. They are stumbling blocks over which infant sons of God have tripped, bloodied noses, banged heads, and far too often, have lost their lives. And they constitute the Christendom that the world recognizes as being of Christ. They are those who were to stay in heavenly Jerusalem, but did not like the accommodations or the expectations of this city; thus, they went for a walkabout, preaching that Jesus is the Christ without being clothed in power from on high. They preached that Jesus is the Christ without being sent by God. They are usurpers and spiritual bastards.

The self-identified Christian who does not keep the commandments that the Creator of all that is spoke to Moses from atop Mount Sinai—these commandments are those that Jesus referenced when He said, “‘Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me’” (John 14:21)—either has not been born of spirit, or is willfully rebellious, refusing to be ruled by Jesus as one of the citizens who hated the nobleman (Luke 19:14). And for human beings it is difficult to separate self-identified Christians who have not yet been born of spirit from willfully rebellious sons of God, for the new creature born of spirit as a son of God is neither male nor female, Jew nor Greek, free nor slave. The new creature is truly invisible. And the presence or absence of this new creature is only disclosed by the actions of the fleshly body in which this new creature dwells; so (1) the self-identified Christian who has not been born of spirit and (2) the Christian born of spirit but who is too weak to overcome the flesh and (3) the willfully rebellious Christian who has been born of spirit will all break the commandments, often though only the commandment that the person thinks is least (usually the Sabbath commandment). These three will outwardly look the same, but inwardly, they couldn’t be more different. Thus, schisms are necessary to separate genuine disciples from false or rebellious disciples (1 Cor 11:19) even though the Body of Christ is one and is not divided into many dissenting slivers.

The Body of Christ is one Body, one Church: the Christian Church. It is not divided, and it is presently dead. Having been crucified with Christ, dying as He died, and now awaiting resurrection after the third day, for the gates of Hades will not prevail against it, the Body of Christ is separated from God through unbelief that long ago become disobedience. It was not a weapon forged within or without the Body that separated it from the Father and the Son; it was, simply, a lack of belief and a loathing for Moses through whom God has intended to build a great and mighty nation from the beginning.

Genuine disciples are living stones that individually and collectively form the temple of God, with this temple representing New Jerusalem and the kingdom of God, which was, when Jesus walked among the Pharisees of His day, no larger than Jesus Himself.

When Jesus on the 1oth of Abib, four days before He was crucified, cleanses the temple and drives out all who sold and bought in the temple (Matt 21:12), He was the temple about which He had three years earlier said, “‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up’” (John 2:19). The Jews didn’t earlier understand what He said, for they replied, “‘It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you will raise it up in three days’” (v. 20), with those three days being both the remaining three years of His ministry and the three days that He was in the heart of he earth. In the fiftieth year, the length of jubilee, the temple Herod built stood as the more glorious second temple (Hag 2:9), but that stone temple was “liberated” from lifelessness at Calvary.

The temple was “unclean” or had become a “common” place of mercantile activities when Jesus cleansed it at the beginning of His ministry; for as the prophet Haggai asked the priests of the law, “‘If someone carries holy meat in the fold of his garment and touches with his fold bread or stew or wine or oil or any kind of food, does it become holy?’” (2:12), and the priests answered, No. Holiness does not transfer by association. Then Haggai asked the priests, “‘If someone who is unclean by contact with a dead body touches any of these, does it become unclean?’” (v. 13), and the priests answered, Yes. And Haggai said, “‘So it is with this people, and with this nation before me, declares the Lord, and so with every work of their hands. Now then, consider from this day onward. Before stone was placed upon stone in the temple of the Lord, how did you fare?’” (vv. 14–16).

Israel in Babylon was a dead body! The remnant that left Babylon was unclean through touching a dead body. Everything the remnant undertook was defiled, including building the second temple. But when Haggai spoke to the priests, the Lord had decided to hide a piece of holy meat in the fold of His garment. This piece of holy meat was the Zerubbabel of prophecy, with the man Zerubbabel forming his lively representation or shadow as the stone temple was the representation of the living second temple.

The holy meat was hidden in the fold of the garment, and was not seen by that which touched it. The man Zerubbabel was a visible human being, but as natural Israel as the holy nation of God was the shadow and type of spiritually circumcised Israel being the holy nation of God, Zerubbabel was holy so that the temple would not be defiled before the first sacrifice was made. But Zerubbabel was not able to make the remnant of Israel, or Israel in Babylon, or a future temple holy. Zerubbabel could not transfer his “holiness” to another. Thus, the temple Herod ordered built, though grand in appearance and though built by priests, was, nevertheless, unclean through touching the dead body of Israel. Therefore, with Jerusalem under Herod becoming a tourist destination and where Jews of the Diaspora made once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimages, the temple’s uncleanliness was manifest by it becoming a center of mercantile activities. The temple, as if it were a circumcised man, had been sold into slavery when priests under Herod began work to replace the aging structure Zerubbabel, made clean by God when Haggai spoke to the priests, built four plus centuries earlier. And as land sold within Judea was subject to being redeemed, the temple as holy land was redeemed by God on the fiftieth year—and Israel would be liberated from defilement seven years [prophetic years, not solar years] after the temple was initially cleansed by Jesus.

Jesus’ latter cleansings of the temple days before He was to be crucified pertain to Israel in the seven endtime years of tribulation and liberation from death at the end of these seven years of tribulation.

Again, Zerubbabel as holy meat hidden in the fold of the garment of God transcends time, with the man being the shadow and lively representation of the Zerubbabel who will finish the temple, this Zerubbabel being Christ Jesus.

So misunderstanding can be limited from the beginning: when the prophet Ezekiel saw the glory of the Lord leave the temple at Jerusalem (Ezek chap 10), the temple was no longer of God, and Israel was a nation delivered unto death as the nation that left Egypt was delivered unto death in the wilderness of Paran (Num chap 14). Israel was a dead body in the same way that the visible Christendom has been the dead Body of Christ since the Council of Nicea. God had delivered both into the hand of the king of Babylon, physical and spiritual respectively. So when a remnant left Babylon under orders from Cyrus to build for the king of Persia a house for God in Jerusalem in Judea, the remnant was defiled through being of the dead body of Israel in Babylon; the remnant was defiled even in Jerusalem through having “touched” Israel in Babylon. This remnant was slaves of the king of Persia, and this remnant could not make itself clean. Only God could cleanse this remnant, and make it holy.

Rabbinical Judaism has been without understanding: Sadducees and Pharisees were not made holy through coming into contact with the temple. Israel in Babylon was a defiled nation by being a corpse. God did not cleanse and again make holy all of Israel in the days of Haggai. He hid a piece of holy meat in the fold of His garment. That holy meat was Zerubbabel and Joshua, the high priest, and his friends (in Zechariah chapter 3, Joshua is seen being made holy). They were made holy so that the temple itself would be holy. But Israel was not again made holy. Zerubbabel could not transfer his “holiness” onto the people that were unclean through having been delivered into the hands of the king of Babylon. Holy meat hidden in the fold of a garment does not make foods that touch it holy. Rather, the defilement of an unclean person makes all that this defiled person touches unclean.

The temple that had been made holy by having been built by Zerubbabel was replaced by one made with defiled hands—yes, the priesthood was defiled. Neither Zerubbabel nor Joshua had the authority to make what was unclean by being the dead body of Israel in Babylon clean through touching the people that had returned from Babylon. Thus, with the passing of Zerubbabel and Joshua, only the temple in Jerusalem was holy; the people remained defiled. The last Adam could find no helpmate among them: the people were to Jesus as beasts were to the first Adam. So the temple built by defiled hands had to be cleansed before Jesus, as the last Adam, could be placed in it as Elohim [singular in usage] placed the first Adam in the garden of God.

This is a new war scroll, not a peace treaty made to mend offenses between Judaism and Christendom. Judaism has been theologically dead—as a dead man walking—since God delivered the nation into the hand of King Nebuchadnezzar, who drove the nation, as if the people were cattle, to Babylon where God, through Jeremiah, told the nation to stay for He had plans for the nation. Yes, God intends good for the nation, but this good comes when natural Israel is grafted back onto the Root of Righteousness during the first 1260 days of the seven endtime years of tribulation. Until then, natural Israel is a lifeless corpse that sincerely believes that God would never abandon His holy nation regardless of the lawlessness of their ancestors … He hasn’t abandoned them; He has delivered them into death where they, like the Christian Church, await resurrection.

When addressing the situation that developed at Corinth in which a man was with his stepmother, the Apostle Paul applies the concept that must be understood to comprehend prophecy: Paul ordered the saints “to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord” (1 Cor 5:5). The prince of this world is Satan; the king of spiritual Babylon is Satan. Thus, God delivered Israel, physical and spiritual, into the hand of the king of Babylon for the destruction of the flesh so that the spirit of both might be saved when judgments are revealed. Judaism in the hand of Satan has done a far better job of keeping the commandments and attempting to serve God than the Israelite peoples ever did when living in Judea; so the spirit of some will be saved when judgments are revealed. Christendom has not done as well; for it continues to think that it dwells in heavenly Jerusalem, a city with theological coordinates, when it has dwelt in Babylon as a dead corpse since the 4th-Century CE.

So Herod’s temple might as well have been built by Roman soldiers—it was a defiled structure before it was completed, for the holy meat hidden in the fold of the garment of God could not by association make clean the stew that was the Pharisees, Herodians, and Sadducees. Only that Wave Sheaf Offering of green barley could cleanse what was defiled.

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"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."

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