December 18, 2009 ©Homer
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Commentary — From the Margins
In his research paper for an English 212 course (second semester Comp), a student wrote the following:
AIDS has almost completely been over shadowed by cancers and finding a cure for these aliments. Why is this? The answer could be our societal morals … gay rights since the time of the “Fast Track” life style have progressed [to where] homosexuals can now wed and be open about their sexually [sic] and do not need to hide or participate in underground sex rinks to satisfy a need. Our society is now at ease with same-sex relationships. Therefore homosexuals do not need to take drugs that [restrict] inhibitions. An act that once needed mind-impairment to perform is now almost as socially accepted as heterosexual couplings. (student @ Saginaw Valley State University, Fall 2009)
An act that once needed mind-impairment to perform—within this clause lays both acceptance of homosexuality and its rejection … the student has been taught to be tolerant, to be accepting of alternate life choices [styles], to say what is politically correct, but the student still believes there is something inherently wrong with homosexuality.
It might help if the reader knew the student was from a small farming community on Michigan’s Lower Peninsular, and that the student wants to escape from the hard work and poverty of his hometown. The community is politically conservative. Religiously, the community is somewhat evenly divided between Lutheran and Roman Catholic, and ordination of gay priests by Evangelical Lutherans (the nearest Evangelical congregation is in the Bay City area) has troubled conservative Lutherans in and around the community. As the mother of a different student said, “There’s too much of that Mary thing for me to attend the Catholic Church so I don’t know what I’m going to do.”
Another student in the student’s Final Exam for the same English 212 course wrote, “Sex is seen by society as something to do rather than an intimate action between two people. ‘Virginity has become a joke rather than a value.’ Traditional values relating to sex have changed drastically since the start of feminists movements [sic].” Yet another student wrote, “Women choose to engage in sexual activity as well as protect their abstinence. Men are socially as well as legally obligated to abide by and respect the woman’s choice.”
Virginity is a joke; sex is seen by society as something to do—like playing cards? A man is legally obligated to pay eighteen years of child support if the woman chooses to become pregnant when engaged in something to do. The woman, with society’s permission, can choose to murder the “child” if the pregnancy is inconvenient, just so long as she makes this choice before the infant’s head clears the birth canal or while the umbilical cord is still attached. Is this where Political Correctness has taken America? To the moral gates of ancient Rome?
In a December 8, 2009, Associated Press story titled, “Death Penalty for Gays? Uganda Debates Proposal,” dateline Kampala, Uganda, Katharine Houreld and Godfrey Olukya write the following lead, “Proposed legislation would impose the death penalty for some gay Ugandans, and their family and friends could face up to seven years in jail if they fail to report them to authorities. Even landlords could be imprisoned for renting to homosexuals.”
But in the United States, college students in a small state university not known for liberal activism see nothing wrong with same sex marriages or recreational sex or committed relationships outside of marriage. It’s Christendom’s value system that is out-of-touch with America. The Christian Church needs to get real and understand that times have changed, that women are not subject to any man, that women can choose where and when and with whom to have sex … well, the getting real will come when humanity can get no farther from God and must begin returning to the Almighty. God will, of course, hasten that return by liberating Christendom from indwelling sin and death, thereby bringing the Church to life as suddenly as when He brought angels to life, with a third of the angels afterward rebelling against Him.
In ballpark numbers, there are 2.1 billion Christians or a third of humanity, with roughly a third of this third part of humankind being natural firstborns. It is possible a third of this third part is also born of God although evidence of such birth is outwardly lacking, but in the modeling that has the visible things of this world revealing the invisible things of God, a third would have indwelling heavenly life. This would mean that in this world today there are approximately 700 million Christians who have been born of God (or born of spirit — pneuma hagion), but who do not annually “cover” the indwelling firstborn son of God by taking the Passover sacraments of bread and wine in the dark portion of the 14th of Abib. This would be akin to a third of Israel in Egypt not sacrificing, roasting, and eating a paschal lamb when Moses commanded the nation to do so: every firstborn in a house, Israelite or Egyptian, in Egypt not “covered” by the blood of a paschal lamb would have been slain when the death angel passed over the nation. God is not a respecter of persons. Unbelief within Israel brings death to these unbelieving Israelites just as surely as unbelief in Gentiles has prevented the nations from having life.
Ultimately, it is unbelief that condemns a person. It isn’t transgression of the Sabbath or murder or lying or breaking any of the commandments—it is the reason why the commandments were broken that condemns the person. It is knowing what God has said and not believing Him. God then sends a delusion over the person so the person cannot believe Him. And of the potentially 700 million sons that the modeling suggests are today spiritually alive, a statistically insignificant number are covered by the blood of Christ taken on the First Unleavened. Too few “Christians” take the sacraments of unleavened bread and wine on the dark portion of the 14th of Abib (with the month of Abib beginning with the first new moon crescent following the vernal equinox) to negate the use of “all” in a generic sentence as, All of Christendom stands naked, stripped of grace, before God. Too few disciples believe the message, the word [logos — John 12:48], Jesus left with His disciples. Too few disciples believe the writings of Moses to even produce a burp in the message Christendom broadcasts to the world on 24/7 satellite television. If a tithe of Christianity will be saved, this tithe will have to come from those “Christians” who are not today truly born of God; for what “Christian” doesn’t know that Jesus said,
Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. (Matt 5:17–20)
The scribes and the Pharisees had the law but did not keep it (John 7:19), and the circumcised-of-heart Israelite who relaxes one of the least of the commandments doesn’t transgress the commandment. The one who relaxes the least of the commandments still believes the writings of Moses and hears the voice of Jesus. And what’s seen within Christendom is rejection of Moses; what’s seen is knowing what Moses wrote while sincerely believing Moses’ writings do not pertain to Christians. What’s seen is an entire generation of Christians (with that statistically insignificant exception) in open rebellion against God. What’s seen is college students coming from “Christian” homes that honestly believe same sex marriages are okay as long as the two people love each other, that sex is something everyone does before marriage, that women do not need to marry the father of their children—even without marriage, the father is legally obligated to support his child. What’s seen is the darkness of the midnight hour when humanity can get no farther from God than it is.
If God is not a respecter of persons, and if “there was not a house [in Egypt] where someone was not dead” (Ex 12:30) when the death angel passed over the land at midnight on the night of the first Passover, then among uncovered Christians, Jews, Muslims, and Gentiles there will not be a house where someone is not dead on the Second Passover, when death angels pass over all the earth and throughout the Abyss, slaying unbelieving firstborns, beginning with the great king or first horn of the spiritual king of Greece.
Consider that beginning the thirteenth year of Josiah, the then-young prophet Jeremiah spoke persistently to the men of Judah, but none listened (Jer 25:3) … when Jeremiah started proclaiming a message of repentance, the house of Judah was not keeping the Passover and was no longer even circumcising male infants. The temple was in disrepair. The law had been lost. The firstborn son of the Lord (from Ex 4:22) was really just another son of the Adversary, one of many minor kingdoms dwelling precariously in the land of Canaan. The once great kingdom that David had handed over to Solomon was a third rate fiefdom wracked by famine and discontent, gutted by rebellion, clinging to stony hillsides, and gasping its last breaths of freedom.
In the eighteenth year of Josiah, roughly five years after Jeremiah began proclaiming repentance, amongst debris in the temple, the Book of the Law was found (2 Kings 22:3, 8), and for the first time since the days of the judges, the Passover to the Lord was kept as it is written in the Book of the Covenant (2 Kings 23:21–22).
The Christian Church is at a moment in its history analogous to the five years before the Book of the Law was found while remodeling the temple—
The left hand is the mirror image of the right hand, but it is not the right hand. The first Passover (when Israel left Egypt) is the mirror image of the Second Passover, but it is not the Second Passover. As the left and right hands are enantiomorphs, the first Passover and the Second Passover are enantiomorphs. And unbelief in Egypt, whether by Israelite or Egyptian [there is no recorded unbelief by Israel, nor is there any recorded “belief” by Egyptians; yet a “mixed multitude” left Egypt with Israel — Ex 12:38], and endtime unbelief by humankind and by angels are enantiomorphs. Thus, under the first covenant, the covenant made with Israel on the night the Lord led the nation out from Egypt (Heb 8:9; Jer 31:32), unbelief manifested outwardly as transgression of the commandments is sin, for the laws of God are outside of Israel: the commandments were spoken to Moses loudly enough that all of Israel heard, then twice inscribed by the finger of the Lord on stone tablets, then inscribed by Levites in a book [scroll]. But under the new covenant that will have the laws of God written on hearts and placed in minds, simple unbelief (before it is manifested as outward action) condemns the son of God to the lake of fire; for “God sends [to those who refuse to love the truth] a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not [do not] believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thess 2:11–12).
There is a buried qualifier in what Paul writes to the Thessalonians: to be condemned, the person must first be born of God; the person must be of circumcised-of-heart Israel.
Under the New Covenant, it isn’t transgression of the law that condemns a person; it is unbelief. And if the “Christian” actually born of God doesn’t today believe God about taking the Passover sacraments of the First Unleavened (when Israel in Egypt ate the paschal lamb), then God will send or perhaps has already sent over this “Christian” a strong delusion that causes this “Christian” to believe what is false, thereby condemning this Christian to the second death.
When King Josiah commanded that all of the people keep the Passover as it’s written in the Book of the Covenant, then put away the mediums and the necromancers and the household gods and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah (2 Kings 23:21, 24), Josiah did what was right in the eyes of the Lord. But Josiah did not quench the Lord’s wrath: because of what Manasseh had done, national repentance could not save Judah (vv. 26–27). And repentance by Christendom today cannot prevent the Church from being stripped of grace when liberated from indwelling sin and death at the beginning of the seven endtime years of tribulation.
Being filled with the spirit of God and liberated from indwelling sin and death would seem to be a “good thing,” but with being empowered by the breath of God comes spiritual nakedness … outward circumcision represents outward nakedness for God: the circumcised Israelite’s only covering for his nakedness is his obedience to the Lord. As Abraham was to walk uprightly before the Lord (Gen 17:1–2), every circumcised descendant of Abraham—to be a descendant of Abraham—is to walk uprightly before the Lord. The animal sacrifices gave to Israel temporary covering for the nation’s transgressions of the commandments that were made alive at Sinai, but the animal sacrifices could not and did not pay the death penalty for the nation’s lawlessness. Only Christ Jesus at Calvary could pay for Israel’s accumulated sins, thereby canceling the record of debt that stood against the person with its legal claim to the person’s life.
Understand, the animals sacrificed by ancient Israel did not pay the death claim incurred by the nation for its transgressions of the law, but only covered this death claim until Yah entered His creation as His only Son, the man Jesus of Nazareth, to die on the cross at Calvary, with His death by suffocation [how the cross killed] foreshadowing how spiritual sons of God, human and angelic, would perish from loss of “breath” in the lake of fire.
Christians do not today “cover” their lawlessness with animal sacrifices; rather, they are under grace, the mantle [garment] of Christ Jesus’ righteousness … because Jesus was twice born of God—once when Yah entered His creation as His only Son (Jesus’ human birth), then a second time when the “breath” of the Father descended upon Him as a dove—Jesus on the cross at Calvary had life in both this world, with this life [psuche] coming through His human birth, and He had life [pneuma] in the heavenly realm, with this life coming from receipt of a second breath of life [pneuma Theou] following baptism. The life lost at Calvary was the life that came with human birth, and the worth of this life exceeded the value of the creation; thus, the life lost at Calvary was more than adequate to pay (not abrogate or cover) the death penalty for every sin Israel had committed or would commit in this world.
But the inner new creation that is born of God as a son is not of this world: this “life” that comes via a second birth is life that has come from God as Jesus received a second breath of life following baptism, and this life doesn’t die when the tent of flesh perishes. Hence, the death of Jesus’ fleshly body at Calvary did not end the life that had come with receipt of the divine breath of the Father. About this Peter writes,
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison, because they formerly did not obey, when God's patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water. (1 Pet 3:18–20)
Rather than Calvary ending the second life Jesus had received following baptism, Peter writes that this life, which could not ascend to heaven until the fleshly body was resurrected after the third day, proclaimed repentance to imprisoned spirits—these spirits had not obeyed God prior to the world being baptized into death in the days of Noah. The long lifespan of antediluvian humanity did not convince them that God meant what He said to Adam in Genesis 2:16–17. All they saw was Adam being driven from the Garden of God as they were cast into the Abyss.
Some teachers within the Churches of God have held that Peter tells of Yah preaching repentance to rebelling spirits in the days of Noah, not the inner life the man Jesus received from the breath of the Father going to imprisoned spirits while the dead body of Jesus lay in the Garden Tomb. These teachers deny that Jesus was born of spirit until His fleshly body was resurrected after the third day; they deny that they are now born of spirit. And that might well be the case, for they are without spiritual understanding or discernment.
The second breath of life that the man Jesus visibly received to fulfill all righteousness—there was no reason to baptize Jesus, John’s objection (for Jesus was without sin), except for Jesus to establish the pattern or model for how righteousness would be fulfilled—did not die at Calvary and could not ascend to the Father except as the reality of the Wave Sheaf Offering, made on the morrow after the Sabbath (the first day of the week). This life could sleep as human beings sleep at night, but according to Peter, that wasn’t the case: this life preached to imprisoned spirits guilty of longtime unbelief. What was preached is really not addressed by Peter, except as he says, “Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience” (1 Pet 3:21) … baptism is unto the death of the old self, old nature, with judgment coming onto the new self or new nature; and if the pattern holds, Jesus notified imprisoned angels that they would be judged by glorified human beings. Jesus would have laid the foundation for these fallen angels to appeal to God for a good or clean conscience. Jesus would have set up the appeals process by which disciples will judge angels.
The second breath of life that Jesus received did not die at Calvary and cannot pay the death penalty for spiritual sons of God, human or angelic—Jesus will not be crucified a second time; He will not die in the heavenly realm. And unbelief on earth or in heaven condemns the unbeliever to death. Therefore, Jesus can only cover the transgressions of the law or manifestations of unbelief in the heaven realm.
Jesus said, “‘You have heard that it was said, “You shall not commit adultery.” But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart’” (Matt 5:27–28) … if a man [or a woman] looks on another with lust, no adultery is committed in this world. Yet, Jesus said that adultery is committed, so it can only be committed in the mind, the outward or knowable manifestation of the heavenly realm.
The commission of sin by the mind cannot be paid-for by a death in this world—a death in this world would be to the commission of sin by the mind as animal sacrifices were to Israel’s actual transgressions of the law. Therefore, Jesus’ death at Calvary “covers” but does not pay for sins committed in the mind. The death penalty for sins committed in the mind must be paid by a death in the Abyss.
The easiest venue for understanding that Jesus’ death at Calvary paid for the sins of Israel in this world and covers the sins of Israel in the heavenly realm comes from understanding that both sacrificial goats on Yom Kipporim form the shadow and type of Christ Jesus: the goat sacrificed on the altar (Lev 16:7–9, 15) represents Jesus at Calvary paying the death penalty for every sin, past and future, committed by Israel in this world; whereas the Azazel goat (v. 10) over which the sins of Israel are confessed (v. 21) represents the glorified Jesus bearing the sins of Israel in the heavenly realm. (The bull that is a sin offering for Aaron [the high priest] and his household forms the shadow of Jesus prior to Calvary.)
The Azazel goat, bearing the sins of Israel, lives in the wilderness, separated from Israel by a figurative or literal precipice. This was how it was supposed to be, but when the House of Judah misplaced the Book of the Covenant and ceased circumcising its infants on the eighth day, the nation also began killing the Azazel goat so that it wouldn’t wander back into town—and Judah (Israel) killing the Azazel goat foreshadowed the nation rejecting Christ Jesus.
Under grace, the sins of Israel in this world have their attached death penalties paid by Jesus’ death at Calvary, but the sins of the mind such as lust or anger against brother or simple unbelief are only covered by Jesus’ death. The death penalty attached for each of these transgressions must still be paid—and will be paid by either the one who committed the transgression or by the Adversary when he is cast into the lake of fire. The attached death penalties, however, will only be covered until the Son of Man is revealed; for the Host of the Heaven will not swallow His wrath. Because of all of the provocations of Christendom for the past 1900 years, the Father will deliver the circumcised-of-heart nation into the hand of the Adversary for the destruction of the flesh so that the spirit might be saved when judgments are revealed (cf. Dan 7:25; Zech 13:7–8; 1 Cor 5:5). Only by turning from the ways of this world—all of them, including the world’s observance of its holidays—will the inner new selves that have been born of God be saved.
Turning from the ways of this world means rejecting the “Christian” theology of the Adversary and his ministers (2 Cor 11:14–15) and believing the writings of Moses, the prerequisite for hearing the voice of Jesus (John 5:46–47) and believing the one who sent Jesus into this world.
Every Christian bears witness against him or herself for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, but the one who will be saved has no other witness against the person. Neither the writings of Moses nor the message/word Jesus left with His disciples will bear witness against the person. Thus, because it takes the witness of two or three to establish a thing, the person with no other witness but him or herself against the person will pass from death to life without coming under judgment (John 5:24). There is no one [entity] to testify against the person.
Grace conceals the transgressions of the disciple from man and angels, but a disciple who willingly returns to being the bondservant of sin after being set free sheds the garment of Christ’s righteousness and stands naked before God, with both the writings of Moses and the word Jesus left with His disciples testifying against the person. This person stands condemned by three witnesses. And the Christian who knows what the commandments require but who chooses to break even the least of them has willingly returned to sin and is no longer under grace … the commandment usually considered least and most frequently broken by Christians is the Sabbath commandment, for what Christian doesn’t know that the Sabbath is the seventh day?
Ancient King Josiah was approximately four years older than the prophet Jeremiah. They were both determined to do what was right, and they were both young men living in a lawless and idolatrous nation. And they were both as disciples are today … when sex is something to do and same-sex marriages are condoned (if the two people love each other), what has happened to the writings of Moses? Certainly Moses isn’t believed, which means that Jesus’ voice isn’t being heard, regardless of how many times athletes give thanks to God for well-executed plays made in Sabbath afternoon football games.
One uncovered sin is enough to condemn one life—
One death is enough to kill one life, the life that has come forward from the first Adam. The second death kills indwelling spiritual life, received as the gift of God in Christ Jesus (Rom 6:23); received as a second breath of life through receipt of the breath or spirit of God. Thus, death and the second death are enantiomorphs as the first covenant and the New Covenant are enantiomorphs and as the first Adam and the last Adam are enantiomorphs.
The life that has come from the first Adam is sustained by indwelling fire: i.e., the cellular oxidation of simple carbohydrates. This is unseen fire, dark fire, the shadow and type of the inner bright fire of eternal life or heavenly life as the prophet Ezekiel sees in vision:
And above the expanse over their heads there was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like sapphire; and seated above the likeness of a throne was a likeness with a human appearance. And upward from what had the appearance of his waist I saw as it were gleaming metal, like the appearance of fire enclosed all around. And downward from what had the appearance of his waist I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness around him. Like the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud on the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness all around.
Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard the voice of one speaking. (1:26–28)
Both physical and spiritual life comes as indwelling fire … fire in this world is chemically described as oxidation, and when the source of the oxygen molecules is taken away, the fire goes out. Thus, an oil well fire is extinguished or killed when an explosion momentarily consumes or drives away the oxygen molecules needed to sustain the fire. Likewise, chemical fire extinguishers put out fires by suffocating them, blanketing them with a layer of other molecules that deny the fire its “life sustaining” oxygen molecules. And this too is how human death occurs: the heart quits pumping oxygen-laden blood to cells, or the lungs are unable to take in the oxygen molecules needed to sustain life. In either case, individual cells within the body are deprived of oxygen and life ceases. The fire goes out.
Spiritual death comes in a mirror image manner: the inwardly contained bright fire that Ezekiel saw as the glory of, or life-sustaining fire of the Lord is the right hand enantiomer of the left hand dark fire of cellular oxidation of simple carbohydrates. This physically invisible heavenly fire is revealed or can be known by the things of this world; i.e., the oxidation of carbon-based molecules [oxidation of iron molecules forms rust, which does not sustain life as humans know it]. And as the left hand is not the right hand, physical life is not spiritual life but discloses much information about spiritual life by being the dark shadow of this otherwise unknowable heavenly life received in a manner similar to how a human infant receives oxygen delivered to its blood from the breath of its mother.
Metaphors must necessarily be mixed when using words that apply to the things of this world for the things of God: “fire” in this world is a metaphor for the life-sustaining force that appears as fire in the heavenly realm. But so too is “breath” in this world a metaphor for the delivery of that heavenly life-sustaining force. “Breath” is also the metonymical expression for all that constitutes inner human life, whereas “light” is the metonymical expression for life coming via heavenly fire.
(A metaphor has one thing being another thing which it cannot be; thus, a metaphor is never true but is an approximation that serves to convey knowledge when no words exist to convey that knowledge. A metonymical expression is linguistic shorthand that uses an aspect of a thing as the representation of the entire thing, such as the “White House” being used to represent the entirety of the Executive Branch of the Federal Government. Jesus spoke only in figures of speech, for He spoke about heavenly things that the words of earthly languages could only represent metaphorically. And disciples recorded these metaphors and occasional metonymic expressions in Greek, not in Hebrew, because these metaphors really only work in Greek. They cannot be well translated directly in English nor read as literal expressions: they were never uttered as literal expressions intended to be taken for their assigned denotative meanings. They can only be translated as metaphors that by their indirectness disclose what can only be known through indirection.)
If a son of God dwelling in a tent of flesh can be condemned to the second death (the death that pertains to the life received from God), then this second death is as much like the death of the tent of flesh as the cellular oxidation of simple sugars is like the fire within the spirit being having the appearance of a man that Ezekiel saw. They are enantiomorphs, thereby making death as permanent of a state for spirit beings as it is for physical beings: death comes from extinguishing the fire that sustains life. And when an entity with heavenly life is thrown into the lake of fire, this throwing into the lake of fire is akin to the explosions that extinguishes oil well fires. Fire overwhelms fire and cuts off the “oxidizing” source. The lake of fire smothers or suffocates spiritual life; it does not “consume” flesh as physical fire does. It consumes eternal or heavenly life by extinguishing it, thereby leaving that life as ashes on the earth. And the first king of the spiritual king of Greece, a federation of at least five demonic kings, will have his life extinguished at the Second Passover when death angels pass through the Abyss, taking the lives of firstborns, natural and spiritual, not covered by the blood of the Lamb.
Throughout the 20th-Century, the Churches of God held that angels could not die, that God would not take life from them, that (as with the Evangelical Church), death was separation from God: indeed, death is separation from God, but death is also the absence of life. When the “fire” that sustains life in the heavenly realm is extinguished, life ends.
Because the presence of life and the absence of life cannot simultaneously exist in an entity, and since heaven or the heavenly realm is timeless [time, or better, space-time is an attribute of the creation], every entity that has life in this realm has life eternal and will not nor cannot die. However, once angels left their abode of obedience and were cast into the Abyss, then into time, they can die for one moment (when they have life) will become the next moment (when they do not have life). The fire that is present in these fallen angels will simply be extinguished in the next moment. Likewise, firstborn human sons of God will lose their lives if they do not cover themselves by the blood of the Lamb, with the loss of their lives not coming by pestilence or by famine, war, or natural disasters, but by simple loss of breath, the breath of man and/or the breath of God.
The second death is not life separated from God, nor is it life in a rotisserie, the common perception of hell. It is death; it is the death of the son of God through loss of life, through the “fire” being extinguished. And angels within the Abyss have not yet seen an angelic son of God die: they are as Eve was when cast from the Garden of God because she believed the serpent who said, “‘You will not surely die’” (Gen 3:4). They are deceived, for they believe the Adversary rather than God.
As Eve was deceived by the serpent, angels were deceived by the old serpent, Satan the devil. Paul, using Eve as the representative for all women, writes to Timothy, “Let a woman learn quietly with all submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor” (1 Tim 2:11–14).
When Adam ate forbidden fruit, he was not deceived—this is Paul’s claim. Death doesn’t enter the world because Eve was deceived, but because Adam, who was not deceived, deliberately disobeyed the Lord. It isn’t deception that ultimately condemns those angels that left their first habitation; it is their disobedience when they are no longer deceived. It wasn’t the deception that presently grips the Christian Church that condemned it to death in the 1st-Century; it was disobedience when the truth was known. Likewise, it will not be deception that condemns individual Christians to the lake of fire; it will be their rebellion against God when they know the truth, when the have the law written on hearts and placed in minds.
The above is extremely important for the genuinely deceived person cannot willfully transgress the law, but the person who knows what the commandments are and who knows what is required of the person does transgress the law through simple unbelief. This is the person who is condemned. Thus, the Sabbatarian Christian who by long practice strived to keep the commandments, then for whatever reason returned to lawlessness by embracing the deceptions that presently grip the Christian Church has experienced the goodness of God and has willfully rebelled against God, with this rebellion condemning the person to the lake of fire. There is no hope for this person; there is no repentance possible, for God will have sent a delusion over the person so he or she cannot believe the truth.
The Sabbatarian Christian who knew to keep the commandments as the reasonable expectation of all who dwell in the household of God but who returns to disobedience; the Sabbatarian Christian who “discovers secret knowledge,” or knowledge apart from what is preached by the one[s] sent by God; the Sabbatarian disciple who places importance on the things of this world, from an earthly temple in earthly Jerusalem to how the name of God is to be pronounced in this world—all of these disciples condemn or have condemned themselves. They are as rebelling angels are; i.e., they have left their first habitation. They “did not stay within their own position of authority” (Jude 6). They were/are presumptive, and in presuming to have authority not given to them by God, they were/are not deceived but simply rebellious.
Because fallen angels have not yet seen another angel die; because the first fallen angel to die will be the firstborn son of the Adversary, the golden-colored first horn of the bronze king of Greece (color reveals mindset, with common bronze [90% copper, 10% tin] being the same color as 14 carat gold, and in this case, “birth” is through mindset or acceptance of the Adversary’s lies); because one long spiritual night began at Calvary, with the midnight hour of this long night coming when humankind can get no farther from God—sons of God, angelic and human, have been and are marking time as if sleeping for the first six hours of this spiritual night. The Church of God is not today alive; it is not of one mind; it is fraught with divisions and schisms and petty disagreements. It is rebellious, and at this time of the winter solstice, it feigns spirituality by wishing one another Merry Christmas.
One time that can be said with absolute certainty, Jesus of Nazareth was not born on December 25th. He was born while shepherds were still in the field [by the ninth month of the sacred year, sheep were in folds, not in the field]. Jesus was born about six months after John the Baptist was born—John was born about Passover in the year 3757. Six months later would have Jesus’ birth occurring at or near the beginning of Sukkoth of the rabbinical year 3758 (of the Israelite year 3757). And if Jesus’ birth were supposed to be celebrated, the exact date of His birth would be recorded in Scripture. After all, from the days of Moses Israel has celebrated His resurrection and acceptance by the Father through the Wave Sheaf Offering that should be made on the day after the [weekly] Sabbath during the Feast of Unleavened Bread … rabbinical Judaism has long erred in celebrating the Wave Sheaf Offering on a fixed calendar date, the 16th of Abib.
The Christian Church will rebel against God during the Tribulation by observing Christmas, a pagan holiday that has been accepted by Christendom for so long that Christians cannot imagine not celebrating it. This observance of Christmas during the first year of the Tribulation will constitute the great falling away that Paul references in 2 Thessalonians 2:3, when the man of perdition is revealed. The Church will, at that 220 day mark, have no covering for its lawlessness except obedience to God—and because the laws of God will be written on hearts and placed in minds, no Christian will be deceived when the person rebels against God. All will be as Adam was, or as the Adversary was and is; for every Christian will know the Lord and will either believe the Lord or will not believe (and by extension, rebel). There will be no more deceived individuals. Deception will cease to exist.
Angels are without sex and apparently are unable to recreate themselves, just as indwelling sons of God are neither male nor female and are without the ability to produce additional sons of God, what Christendom has failed to grasp. Christians cannot recreate themselves. They cannot make more sons of God via natural reproduction, or via evangelism. Oh, they can make more “Christians” such as themselves, but until the person is born of spirit through receiving a second breath of life, the person is not a son of God. The person is not a disciple of Christ Jesus; is not “Christ.” And that is what’s at stake, for the Body of Christ is “Christ” as the Head is Christ, the firstborn Son of the Most High.
Paul writes, “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one [pneumatic—spirit] we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one [pneuma—spirit]. … Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it” (1 Cor 12:12–13, 27).
Is the Sabbatarian Christian who keeps the high Sabbaths of God one (or in unity) with the many Christians who observe the holidays of this world, including Christmas and Easter? He or she is not.
Is the Latter Day Saint who keeps holy another testament of Jesus one with the Roman Catholic who prays through a saint? Is the disciple of Martin Luther one with the disciple of Mary Baker Eddy or with the disciple of Ellen G. White?
The Christian Church is not today one Body with many members, but a corpse that has suffered horrific corruption, and there is no human means possible to make the Body live again without corruption. So despite growing from one-sixth of the world’s population in the 18th-Century to one third in the 21st-Century, the decomposition of the Body continues as even Christians move farther and farther away from God.
Only God has the ability to breathe life back into the Body, and consider what the Lord told the prophet Ezekiel,
And the word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, when a land sins against me by acting faithlessly, and I stretch out my hand against it and break its supply of bread and send famine upon it, and cut off from it man and beast, even if these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they would deliver but their own lives by their righteousness, declares the Lord God.
“If I cause wild beasts to pass through the land, and they ravage it, and it be made desolate, so that no one may pass through because of the beasts, even if these three men were in it, as I live, declares the Lord God, they would deliver neither sons nor daughters. They alone would be delivered, but the land would be desolate.
“Or if I bring a sword upon that land and say, Let a sword pass through the land, and I cut off from it man and beast, though these three men were in it, as I live, declares the Lord God, they would deliver neither sons nor daughters, but they alone would be delivered.
“Or if I send a pestilence into that land and pour out my wrath upon it with blood, to cut off from it man and beast, even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, declares the Lord God, they would deliver neither son nor daughter. They would deliver but their own lives by their righteousness.
“For thus says the Lord God: How much more when I send upon Jerusalem my four disastrous acts of judgment, sword, famine, wild beasts, and pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast! But behold, some survivors will be left in it, sons and daughters who will be brought out; behold, when they come out to you, and you see their ways and their deeds, you will be consoled for the disaster that I have brought upon Jerusalem, for all that I have brought upon it. They will console you, when you see their ways and their deeds, and you shall know that I have not done without cause all that I have done in it, declares the Lord God.” (14:12–23)
Before a Christian dismisses the above passage by saying these words pertain to Jerusalem, not to Christians, the Christian needs to understand that individually and collectively, the Church is the temple of God (cf. 1 Cor 3:16–17; 2 Cor 6:16; Rev 21:3) and glorified disciples form New Jerusalem (Rev 21:2, 9–10, 22). The indwelling of Christ Jesus in a disciple, with the breath of the Father in Christ Jesus in the disciple (cf. Rom 6:23; John 17:21–23) so that the disciple is one with Christ Jesus as Jesus is one with the Father, with Jesus in disciples and the Father in Jesus, forms the shadow and type—the left hand enantiomer—of the glorified New Jerusalem, composed of glorified disciples with the Almighty and the Lamb dwelling within this city of living saints. Therefore, earthly Jerusalem, which formed a shadow and type of heavenly Jerusalem [i.e., the Church], had happen to it what has happened and will happen to the Church—every Christian theologian or teacher who looks to earthly Jerusalem for fulfillment of endtime prophecies about Israel looks amiss and has not been sent by God but comes on his or her own as a false prophet.
Once the Body of Christ has had the breath of God returned to it, today’s Christians—because it has been their practice—will rebel against the Lord, with this rebellion concealed from public view until the man of perdition is revealed on or about Christmas day of the year of the Second Passover.
In what Paul writes about disciples forming individually and collectively the Body of Christ, he says, “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing” (1 Cor 13:1–3).
Martyrdom without love gains the disciple nothing; faith without love is worthless. And being called to reread prophecy—being given understanding of the mysteries of God—doesn’t benefit me if I do not have love for those Christians who, today, are deceived by the Adversary and his servants, all disguised as ministers of righteousness (from 2 Cor 11:14–15).
It is difficult to watch good people strive to return Christ to Christmas when He was never there. It is difficult knowing what will occur to all of humankind, but especially to Christians, when death angels pass over the land, taking the lives of firstborns not covered by the blood of the Lamb. The consolation is in what Ezekiel recorded about Noah, Daniel, and Job being unable to save either son or daughter but being consoled by the righteousness of the survivors after God has brought His disastrous acts of judgment upon Jerusalem: when those few Sabbatarian disciples who today strive to live uprightly as Noah, Daniel, and Job lived—neither Noah, Daniel, or Job entered or could have entered the earthly temple in earthly Jerusalem [Noah and Job because they lived too early and elsewhere; Daniel because he was a eunuch]—see the Remnant, see the 144,000 natural Israelites who follow the Lamb, and see the third part of humanity that comes out of the seven endtime years of tribulation, they will be satisfied that what the Lord did was for cause and was the only way to return humankind to worshiping God instead of demons.
Tell me, if you can, what it would take for Christians to believe the writings of Moses and hear the words of Jesus and believe the one who sent Him? Which Christmas carol will cause disciples to believe the writings of Moses? Which Christmas carol will cause disciples to keep the Passover? Which Christmas gift is actually given to Christ Jesus? How does observing Christmas bring a disciple to repentance?
There is a sincere effort to turn back the secularization of the Christmas season: the parents of those college students who see nothing wrong with same sex marriages and who consider sex as something to do while waiting for Christmas dinner are themselves responsible for the generational drift farther into the theology of the Abyss. They are the ones who put up Christmas trees and Christmas decorations and buy Christmas presents; they are the ones who find joy in the brightly colored lights that pierce the darkness of winter nights, in family get-togethers, and in watching children open presents. They were deceived by their parents who in turn were deceived by their parents, with millennia of deception going back nearly to the days of Noah. But Adam was not deceived. Noah was not deceived. Jesus was not deceived. And in the Tribulation, the Church will not be deceived: the Church will either be as the first Adam was or as the last Adam was, with most being as the first Adam was and few being as chosen (Matt 22:14).
Because Christians are today deceived, they are as Eve was when she ate forbidden fruit—their unbelief is covered by their Husband, the reality of grace. But this covering, as was the case in Eden, doesn’t last: the Son of Man will be revealed (Luke 17:30), with Christ Jesus being the now uncovered Head of the Son of Man and with disciples forming the presently covered Body of the Son of Man. This revealing or disrobing will occur in a time like when Noah entered the Ark on the 10th day of the second month, with destruction coming upon the earth on the 17th day.
In the days of Noah, the earth was baptized by water into death. In the days of the restoration of the Church, first Israel then all of humanity will be baptized into life by Christ Jesus through the outpouring of spirit (i.e., the breath of God). Scripture records that after “Noah was 500 years old, Noah fathered Shem, Ham, and Japheth” (Gen 5:32), all of whom cross from one world into the next on the Ark. Scripture goes on to say, “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all of the foundations of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened” (Gen 7:11) … do we have to wait another century (100 years) for the Second Passover, when Israel is baptized in spirit into life, or is 500 years long enough? Is 483 years long enough to wait?
Generally, the Protestant Reformation is said to have begun in 1517 with Luther’ publication of his 95 Theses, but Sabbatarian disciples hold that the restoration of the Church began with the Radical Reformers and with the Sabbatarian ministry of Andreas Fischer in 1527, a decade later, and in particular with Fischer’s ministry after he was hung (but lived) in 1528.
It took Noah a hundred years to build his Ark, but spiritual arks are constructed in less time. So using Noah’s 500 years as a guideline, and Daniel’s seventy weeks prophecy to illuminate this guideline, endtime disciples see that if God is real [my contention is that He is] and if He does things on a predetermined schedule [my contention is that He does] and if He does nothing without first revealing what He intends to do to His prophets [Amos 3:7], then humankind is about as far from God as humanity can get. When sex is a recreational activity like playing cards; when Christian youth accept same-sex marriages as normal; when Christmas is the economic and spiritual focus of the year, then the midnight hour of the long night that began at Calvary is upon humankind. And out of love for those Christians who are genuinely deceived as Eve was, I must once again admonish those who do not cover, nor have not covered themselves with the blood of the Lamb to follow the example that Jesus left with His disciples—His message, His word [logos] (John 12:48)—so that they are not lost when they should be saved.
Unfortunately, if Israel in earthly Jerusalem would not listen to Jesus when He was here, Christians will not listen to His disciples, even to ones who have been sent as Paul was … Paul writes to Timothy, “You are aware that all who are in Asia turned away from me, among whom are Phygelus and Hermogenes” (2 Tim 1:15), and, “Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things” (Phil 3:17–19).
If Israel would not listen to Jesus, and if Gentile disciples would not listen to Paul, it is extremely unlikely that endtime Christendom will listen to me. Sobeit. But knowing that a warning will not be heard—or at least not heard by many—doesn’t negate the necessity to warn.
If the Second Passover were to occur in a year such as in 2011, the prophesied doom that is and isn’t expected to occur on the December solstice of 2012 will happen as the year-long wrath of the Lamb unfolds on humankind because of the number of genuine saints that rebelling Christendom will have slain between its Christmas rebellion (when the man of perdition was revealed) and the December solstice 360 days later. Whereas Christendom is presently deceived as is all of humanity by the Adversary, these blinders will come off when saints are baptized in spirit: they will no longer be deceived. And Christmas observance following the Second Passover will be undisguised rebellion against God.
Jesus observed the Festival of Lights (John 10:22–23), so if a disciple feels compelled to celebrate a winter festival, it should at least be one that Jesus observed. But disciples certainly don’t have to observe the Feast as rabbinical Judaism celebrates the Feast of Dedication, for disciples are the temple of God. And the Church is the temple that will be restored at the second Passover.
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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."