TWO BEGINNINGS

(Trumpet Ministries,Inc. / Word of Righteousness)

TWO BEGINNINGS Copyright Š 2006 Trumpet Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved

The Lord Jesus Christ on two occasions has been the beginning of the creation of God. The first beginning brought into existence the initial spiritual and physical creations. The second beginning brought into existence the eternal spiritual and physical creations.

Table of Contents

The First Beginning The Father alone There is one God The Father and the Logos The Father, the Logos, the spiritual environment, and the angels The rebellion God’s response to the rebellion The Father, the Logos, the angels, the physical environment, and man The Father gives brief revelations of His eternal purpose The Logos becomes flesh The blood of atonement is shed; the first creation has been finished The Second Beginning The resurrection The forming of the Church Many brothers The thousand-year Kingdom Age The way to the Father The authority, the power, and the goal The feast of Tabernacles God becomes All in all The new heaven and earth reign of Christ Jesus—ages without end

TWO BEGINNINGS

And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; (Revelation 3:4)

"The beginning of the creation of God."

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Beginning. Of what is the Lord Jesus the Beginning? He is the Beginning of the creation of God.

The Lord Jesus is the Beginning.

The First Beginning

The Father alone

The term "beginning" cannot apply to the Father. The Father is without beginning.

We are employing the name "Father" for the Being whom we call God, because this is the name that Jesus emphasized. The Old Testament speaks of Elohim, El Shaddai, Adonai, YHVH, YHVH Tsvaoht (the Lord of Hosts), and other titles.

The Lord Jesus, the Logos made flesh, continually referred to God as "Father." The view of God as our Father is one of the supreme revelations of the New Testament.

However, we must keep in mind that "Father" is not the name of God but indicates His relationship to His creatures. Neither is "God" the name of God but points to His supremacy. Perhaps it is not possible to give a name to Someone who is everything, everywhere, and has no beginning. God Is, and that may be the most comprehensive statement we can make.

It is utterly impossible for human beings to conceive of the Father, to conceive of Someone who has had no beginning. Our minds cannot grasp that which has no beginning.

The Father is a Person without beginning. He is everywhere and in all things. He is in the nucleus of the atom and He fills all of space. He is now, before, and always. Wherever there is anything or any thought of anything, there is the Father.

Were there gods before the Father? There cannot have been gods before the Father because there was no "before the Father." It is this timelessness that we are unable to grasp.

The Father always has been. Where did the Father come from? The Father did not come from anywhere—He always has been.

The Father is God—the Supreme Being!

There is one God.

One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. (Ephesians 4:6)

The basis of Judaism is the expression, "Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord" (Deuteronomy 6:4). The confusion in Christian teaching concerning the Nature of the Godhead has caused the Jews to view Christianity as polytheistic. Indeed, much Christian preaching and teaching in truth is polytheistic. In our haste to emphasize the Deity of Christ we have implied the Father and Jesus are the same Person and yet are Two. If this were the case we would have two Gods.

If we would teach what the Scriptures state, both Old Testament and New, we would show that there is only the one God. The Lord Jesus is God’s Son. The Lord Jesus is Lord and Christ because the one God has made Him so.

Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. (Acts 2:36)

"Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord." There only is the one God. In this the Jews are absolutely correct. There are not three Gods in one Person or One Person in three Gods. The Father, the supreme Lord, has exalted Christ to His right hand. But the Father is the Father and the Lord Jesus is His Son and Priest.

The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool. The Lord shall send the rod of thy strength out of Zion: rule thou in the midst of thine enemies. Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: thou hast the dew of thy youth. The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek. (Psalms 110:1-4)

"The Lord" (in the above) is the Father. "My Lord" (David’s Lord) is the Logos, Christ.

If we view the Father and the Logos as the same Person, or if we understand the Son to be a Person equal to the Father and existing with the Father as another God throughout the eons that are true of the Father’s existence, we will never understand numerous passages of the Scriptures, and we must then regard ourselves as polytheists.

Notice carefully the implications of the following verse:

For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. (I Corinthians 15:27)

It is clear from the above that there are two Personalities involved. The Person referred to as having had all things put under Him is one Person. The other Person who put all things under the first Person is a second Person. To interpret the passage otherwise is to bring hopeless confusion into a concept that the Scriptures express clearly and directly.

The Father and the Logos.

There came a point in what we would term time, although the word time probably has no meaning in this context—at some instance the Word, the Logos, came forth from the inscrutable, invisible God. There was a beginning.

How long ago did the beginning take place? There is no way in which we can comprehend how long ago the Logos came into existence. Perhaps time as we know it would be unable to go back to such an inconceivably distant past.

But the Logos did come forth from the Father in the beginning. Now there were two Persons in existence—if we could call such a transcendent state "existence."

We have no way of knowing how long the Father and the Logos were the only two Beings in existence.

The Logos is the embodiment of the Divine Life of the Father.

(For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) (I John 1:2)

Is the Logos a distinct Person? Yes indeed. Does the Logos have a will of His own? Yes, indeed He does. Are the Father and the Logos the same Person? No, Each is a Person in His own right.

If Each is a Person in His own right, why did the Lord Jesus (the Logos made flesh) speak as though the Father and He are the same Person?

I and my Father are one. (John 10:30)

Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father? (John 14:9)

The Lord Jesus spoke as though the Father and He are the same Person because the Father always dwells in the Lord Jesus and it is by the Father that the Logos acts and speaks. It is not that Jesus is the Father or is another name for the Father.

Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. (John 14:10)

Are the Father and the Logos two distinct "Men"?"

Yes, They are—although only the one Man, Jesus, could be seen at the time the Gospels were written.

It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me. (John 8:17,18)

Can two distinct persons ever be one? Yes. Adam and Eve were distinct persons, yet they are referred to as one person.

Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created. (Genesis 5:2)

God "called their name Adam." The man and his wife were "one flesh."

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. (Genesis 2:24)

The saints are destined to become one as the Son and the Father are One.

That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe thou hast sent me. (John 17:21)

The saints are invited to live by the Lord Jesus just as He lives by the Father.

As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. (John 6:57)

The Father, the Logos, the spiritual environment, and the angels.

It came into the Father’s mind to create a spiritual world and a physical world, and spiritual creatures and physical creatures. The Father created all things through the Logos. Nothing was created that was not created through the Logos.

In the beginning was the Word [Logos], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:1-3)

This is the first of the two beginnings. The Lord Jesus is the beginning of the first creation of God. The phrase "in the beginning" does not mean in the beginning of God, for God has no beginning. Rather, the phrase refers to the period when the first spiritual and physical creations were brought into being.

Who [the Logos, the Lord Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. (Colossians 1:15-17)

The Logos is the image of the invisible God.

The Logos was the Creator of all things in the heavens and upon the earth.

All things were created for the Logos.

The Logos was before all things.

All things consist by the Logos.

The English translation of the Greek logos is "word." However, "word" is not a comprehensive translation. Perhaps the statement "the Logos is the image of the invisible God" comes closer to what the Logos is. The Logos is infinitely more than an English "word."

Now we have in existence the Father, the Logos, who is the perfect Expression and Representation of the Father, spiritual heavens, and a number of creatures in those heavens. It is likely that the spiritual environment and creatures came into being an indescribably long period of time before the physical environment and creatures came into existence. Yet, both the spiritual and the physical are products of the first "beginning."

All of the greater and lesser spirit beings who inhabited the first spiritual creation were created in righteousness and holiness. It is important to our understanding to realize Satan and his followers were not always wicked. This fact should be a warning to all of us that self-will can change a glorious holy creature of God into a monster of depravity.

Satan, the covering cherub, was a perfect creation until it entered his heart to compete against the Father.

Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. (Ezekiel 28:15)

How long the Father peacefully governed all of these bright creatures that He had brought into being though His Logos we have no way of knowing or comprehending. No doubt it was a tremendous period of time, if it can be reckoned in time.

The rebellion.

Then an unspeakably horrible event occurred. A highly placed cherub began to exert his self-will, no longer being content to submit to the Father.

For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. (Isaiah 14:13,14)

I will ascend into heaven.

I will exalt my throne above the stars of God.

I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.

I will ascend above the heights of the clouds.

I WILL BE LIKE THE MOST HIGH

Now we have the Father, the Logos, the spiritual environment, the angels, and a rebellion on the part of many angels of high rank in the heavenly hierarchy, angels that had been created by the Logos.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high [heavenly] places. (Ephesians 6:12)

Our wrestling match today is against highly placed spirit-lords who governed in the spirit realm for untold eons. They are not delighted with the thought of their thrones, the thrones that govern the earth which now are located in the air above us, being given to the hated Logos and to the despised "mudballs" that the Logos refers to as His brothers.

Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power [ruler of the kingdom] of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: (Ephesians 2:2)

God’s response to the rebellion.

Instead of putting the rebels into the Lake of Fire immediately, the Father withdrew above the highest heavens. There He conceived in His mind a vast plan that would solve the problem of the rebellion, provide a living temple for Himself, create a bride, a counterpart for the Logos, and bring up a family of sons of whom the Logos would be the elder brother.

Some of the aspects of God’s eternal purpose are as follows:

The establishing of the Logos as the Center of a new creation, filling all things in the heavens and on the earth with the Logos.

And the creation of:

A bride for the Logos, the Lamb (Revelation 21:9).

A living temple for God (Ephesians 2:22).

A body for the Logos, Christ, the Servant of the Lord (Isaiah 42:1; I Corinthians 12:12).

Agents who can properly receive and administer God’s Holy Spirit (Isaiah 60:1,2).

Rulers who can maintain Paradise on the earth that God had in mind to create (Romans 8:21).

A royal priesthood (I Peter 2:9).

Witnesses of God (Isaiah 43:10).

Sons of God (Revelation 21:7).

Brothers of Christ (Romans 8:29).

Victorious saints of the rebels of the spirit world (Revelation 12:11).

Governors for the nations of human beings that God had in mind to create (Revelation 2:26,27).

Judges of humans and angels (I Corinthians 6:2,3).

A wall of defense around the Glory of God (Revelation 21:14).

The revelation of Himself—God in Christ in holy human beings (Revelation 3:12).

In order to accomplish the several aspects of His eternal plan, God would have to create a new kind of creature, the human being. The Logos would have to become one of these new creatures. Then all of the other humans would have to be transformed into the image of the Logos in spirit, in soul, and in body. Also, they would have to be joined to the Logos to such an extent that they would become part of the eternal Oneness in which the Father and the Logos exist.

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be changed into the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (Romans 8:29)

That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe thou hast sent me. (John 17:21)

Evidently the Father told no one of His plan—not even the Logos. There are ideas, plans, concepts that the Father reserves to Himself until the appropriate hour. Then He speaks to His Logos who in turn reveals God’s will to those who serve the Logos.

The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: (Revelation 1:1)

The Father, the Logos, the angels, the physical environment, and man.

Now we come to the creation of the physical environment and man. Remember, we are speaking of Christ being the beginning of the creation of God. There have been two beginnings and two creations and Christ is the beginning and Lord of both creations. When speaking of the creation of the physical environment and man we are still referring to the first creation.

As we think about the creation of man and his environment, please keep in mind the several aspects of God’s eternal purpose that we listed previously. All things of the creation are working together for good for those who are called according to God’s eternal purpose in Christ.

The creatures of the first spiritual creation do not understand what God is doing. They gain glimpses of the great plans and purposes only as the Spirit of God brings the Word of the Logos through humans. It has pleased God that His revelation come through the struggling saints on the earth. The revelation of Christ comes through us as we follow Christ, bearing our cross.

To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by [through] the church the manifold wisdom of God, (Ephesians 3:10)

To the utter surprise of all of creatures of the spirit realm, the Father through the Logos spoke a new environment into existence. The heavens, the earth, light, plants, planets and stars in the firmament. The physical realm came into existence—an environment superior to the spirit realm.

The righteous angels rejoiced.

When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:7)

An even greater revelation of the Father’s will now appeared by the hand of the Logos.

And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. (Genesis 1:26)

The creatures of the spirit realm understand God’s voice. It must have troubled the rebellious angels immensely to note that God was creating a new kind of being, a being in God’s image and—worse yet—given dominion!

Satan immediately left the heavens and came down to insure that his self-will filled the new creatures.

At the beginning of each of the seven massive days of God’s working He provides two witnesses. Adam and Eve were the two witnesses of the first day, the Day of Form, the form that is destined to endure throughout the endless ages to come. In the future God will not make all new things, He will make all things new. The form of the things that now are will be made gloriously alive in the Kingdom of God.

The concept of resurrection is that of making all things new, of bringing the creatures and things of the first, corrupted creation into Christ-filled life of the new creation. To be "saved" is to be made part of the new creation. All who receive Christ will be made part of the new creation, the new world. All who reject Christ will not be allowed to be part of the new creation. We must be counted worthy if we are to enter the new world.

But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection. (Luke 20:35,36)

The original sin was disobedience. Adam and Eve were disobedient. Just as self-will transformed many of the brightest angels of the heavens into depraved monsters, so it is true that self-will has changed the creatures made in God’s image into depraved monsters.

There is only one legitimate will in the universe, the will of the Father. Until we find rest in that one will we are rebels against the Father.

Before Abraham could be the father of all who believe he had to be tested severely in the realm of obedience.

Before Christ could receive all authority in Heaven and upon the earth He had to be tested severely in the realm of obedience to the Father.

Until any son of God can be trusted to sit on the throne of glory with Christ he must be tested severely in the realm of obedience to the Father.

The original sin, the sin that began around the throne of God in Heaven, was disobedience to the Father’s will. The Kingdom shall not be completely established in the earth until the will of the Father is done in the earth as it is done in the heavens.

It is the will, the rule of the Father that is the principal concern of the Christian redemption and the Kingdom of God.

The Father gives brief revelations of His eternal purpose.

The first aspect of the eternal purpose of God is to make the Logos the Center of a new creation.

That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: (Ephesians 1:10)

How the heart of the Boy of Nazareth must have burned as He read in the Scriptures the revelation of God’s great plan and purpose concerning Himself—the Logos.

How the rebellious angels must have gnashed their teeth in fury, being filled with envy. It was the envy of Satan that caused the Jews to murder their Christ. It is the envy of Satan that causes some Christians to this day to despise the Jews and persecute them in every manner.

Absalom, the son of David, is a picture of Satan. He was an unblemished person just as Satan was unblemished. But then iniquity was found in Absalom. Because of envy he sought to murder his own father and seize the throne for himself.

Religious envy, the envy of Satan, has played a very large role in the history of Judaism and the Christian churches.

Perhaps the greatest revelation to the Boy, Jesus, is found in the second Psalm:

I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen [nations] for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. (Psalms 2:7,8)

"The Lord" in the above passage is the Father, God. The "son" is the Logos. The Father, in view of His eternal purpose, is inviting the Logos to pray that He may come into a new relationship to the Father—that of Son. "Today I have become Your Father."

The Logos created the nations and the farthest reaches of the earth. But the Logos would have to become man in order to inherit His own creation, for the Word of God has assigned the rulership of the creation to man.

The change from the Logos to the Son of God has awesome implications. The change was necessary if the Logos was to become the Firstborn of many brothers.

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be changed into the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (Romans 8:29)

For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one [of the Father]: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, (Hebrews 2:11)

The Logos has no brothers. The Son of God and Son of Man has brothers. The Logos has no wife. The Lamb of God has a Wife. These are eternal changes in the role of the Logos.

But what is being revealed concerning the Logos, the Son of God?

He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. (II Samuel 7:13)

Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. (Isaiah 9:7)

This is enough to make the fallen lords livid with fury.

Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. (Psalms 45:6,7)

The Logos was anointed with the holy oil of gladness more than any of the other inhabitants of the heavens because He loved righteousness and hated iniquity more than they. Now the Anointed One has been raised to the throne of the creation and has been called "God"!

It is part of the Father’s plan to anoint the Logos, the Son of God, with the Spirit of God in order that the Logos may serve the Father by bringing justice to the nations of the earth.

Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. (Isaiah 42:1)

It is through the Apostle Paul that we learn Christ is to have a Body.

For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. (I Corinthians 12:12)

The Logos, Christ, the Servant of the Lord, the Son of God, has been lifted far above every other rulership and power, not only in the present creation but also in that which is to come.

The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool. (Psalms 110:1)

Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: (Ephesians 1:20,21)

And we with Him and in Him.

For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. (Colossians 3:3)

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ: (Ephesians 2:6)

The Logos, the Anointed One, the Son of God, has been raised to the right hand of God. There He shall wait until the Father makes all of His (and our) enemies His footstool, the enemies being the angelic beings who are envious of what the Father has given to Christ.

Every knee shall bow.

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the Glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:9-11)

Then the passage that the Lord Jesus read to the synagogue in Nazareth:

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; (Isaiah 61:1)

And His affirmation concerning Himself:

And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears. (Luke 4:21)

The Logos, the Son of God, declares Himself to be Christ—the Anointed One chosen to set Israel free from the bondages of the wicked.

But first He must be the sin-offering.

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)

The Lord Jesus knew He was to be the sin-offering; but when it came time to drink the cup even the mighty Son of God recoiled as He saw the abominable horrid filth that was to be poured on His pure Spirit, a horrid filth that is beginning to fill the wealthy nations of our day.

The fallen lords of the heavens had reason to tremble when they read that God had given to Adam and Eve dominion over the earth. Just as they feared, the dominion was extended to include dominion over all the works of God’s hands.

Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet: (Psalms 8:6)

It is man who is destined to accomplish God’s eternal purpose by governing the creation of God.

Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. (Hebrews 2:8)

In the present hour man is lower in status than the angels.

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. (Hebrews 2:9)

"But we see Jesus"!

Throughout history the Lord God of Heaven has given glimpses of the many aspects of His eternal plan. The Old and New Testaments contain numerous insights into the Father’s mind. Still the revelation goes forward as God gives to saints on the earth the understanding of the Scriptures. The angels of the heavens desire to look into and understand what it is God is doing.

. . . which things the angels desire to look into. (I Peter 1:12)

The saints in light, a cloud of numerous witnesses, are gaining insight into the plan of redemption as it unfolds through saints on the earth. We of today have profited from their witness. Now they are profiting from our witness. We are all coming to perfection together.

We have arrived now at the greatest of all events thus far. The Logos, the everlasting Expression of the Father, is made flesh.

The Logos becomes flesh.

It is useless to speak of a comparable event in history. No occurrence in all of spiritual or physical history compares in significance with the fact that the eternal Logos, the Expression of the invisible God, took upon Himself the form of man.

And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: (Luke 1:30-32)

The Logos, the Son of God, the Anointed One, now has a human name. His name is Jesus. We call Him Christ (Messiah) Jesus—Jesus the Anointed One of God. A little later He will be known as the Lamb of God and also the Lion of Judah.

Jesus "shall be great." Jesus "shall be called the Son of the Highest."

The Jewishness that always shall attend the earthly dimension of the Logos was established by Gabriel: "the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David."

The Logos has become a flesh and blood and bone baby. He now is a human being with an earthly mother, although conceived by a miracle. The inscrutable Logos has come from eternity and is a boy playing around His home in the village of Nazareth.

The thundering God of Sinai comes as a lad to the elders of Israel, the doctors of the Law, and hears them and asks them questions. Well He may—He being the Torah revealed in flesh!

The Logos from eternity past walks along the dusty street of Jerusalem. The women bake their bread. The men hoe in the fields or watch their sheep. The Lord of David, the "I Am," preaches His matchless words (the very Words of the Father dwelling in Him) and works His miracles.

All life should have stopped! The villagers should have been prostrate on the ground! The chief priests and elders should have run from the Temple and cried out for Christ to save them!

But none of this happened. The Logos was as a root out of a dry ground. There was no beauty that we should desire Him. He was just Jesus the son of Joseph, the rabbi from Nazareth.

God often works in humble circumstances so the rich and proud of the earth will be blind to what He is doing; so His Kingdom may come to the poor and lowly of heart.

No, there is no comparable event in history. The Logos, the Creator of all, became a human being. God became a man that men may return to God.

Jesus taught us something we did not learn during Old Testament days. Jesus taught us to call God, Father. Jesus many times spoke to His Father in Heaven, and taught us that we are to be born of the Father in Heaven and to know God as our Father.

Think about the following passage and you will understand the Kingdom of God.

Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God. (John 20:17)

"My brothers." "My Father." "Your Father." "My God." "Your God."

Not only earth but the heavens also witnessed the revelation of God through the Lord Jesus Christ.

And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. (I Timothy 3:16)

Theologians have used this verse to prove that Jesus and the Father are the same Person. However, in arriving at any such conclusion we must consider the entire Scriptures, Old and New Testament. The Scriptures do not support the concept that Jesus and the Father are the same Person.

What does it mean, then, that God was seen of angels? It means the Logos, being from the Father and filled with the Fullness of the Father, reveals in Himself all that God is and does.

Notice the words of Paul:

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)

"I am not living," Paul exclaims, "it is Christ who is living in me." If Paul keeps on growing in Christ and being filled with Christ the hour will arrive when the Apostle Paul will be able to say, "He who has seen me has seen Christ." Paul will be the image of Christ, the representation of Christ. But the Apostle Paul will never be Christ—not for the untold eons of eternity.

Every true saint is called into the Oneness that is the Godhead.

That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe thou hast sent me. (John 17:21)

We are called to be one in the Lord Jesus as He and the Father are One. None of us will ever be the Father or the Son. But we certainly are called to be filled with all the Fullness of God and to reveal in ourselves the Person, ways, and will of the Father.

And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. (Ephesians 3:19)

We are called to be "filled with all the fulness of God."

The Logos has become flesh. Because He has become flesh He is Heir of all that God has spoken concerning man.

Now we humans are able to relate to God in a manner that would have been impossible if the Logos had not become a man.

The Logos is the eternal dwelling place of the Father. The Logos is the Father’s eternal House. In order for there to be additional rooms in the Father’s House the Logos would have to become human.

The mystery of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is that Christ (the Logos) is not only with us but in us. The mystery is that in the Father’s House, which is Christ, there are many dwelling places. The Lord Jesus as a Human Being went to the cross, then descended into Hell, and then rose into Heaven to the very throne of God, in order that a place might be prepared in God and in our personality for us to dwell as part of the abiding of God in His House.

The Kingdom of God is God in Christ in the saints governing the creation of God.

One problem remains. The wrath of God hovers over the creation—both the spiritual creation and the physical creation. Angels and men have broken the laws of God. The soul that sins shall die. There is no altering of the Divine law.

God cannot proceed with His marvelous plan until an atonement has been made for sin.

No atonement has been provided for the fallen lords. The Lake of Fire is the only preparation that has been made for the devil and his angels.

But man, the race destined to govern the creation of God, can be redeemed under the Law by a near kinsman. Our near kinsman, the Son of Man, has come, ready to redeem all who will accept the Virtue of His shed blood.

Atonement for sin can be made only by blood. In order to redeem fallen mankind the blood of a perfect sin-offering had to be shed—the innocent on behalf of the guilty.

The Logos Himself, Christ, the Son of God, volunteered to be the Sin-offering for His brothers, for the children of Adam.

The blood of atonement is shed; the first creation has been finished.

When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. (John 19:30)

"It is finished."

What has been finished? The entire first creation, the product of the first beginning: the spiritual and physical environments and the spiritual and physical creatures. All have been finished and all must be made new (saved) in Christ.

That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: (Ephesians 1:10)

"All things." All things that have been created, whether spiritual or physical—all things must be made new.

And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. (Revelation 21:5)

"I make all things new."

Every thing was finished on the cross.

But what about the wrath of God concerning the rebellion of His creatures, both spiritual and physical? We cannot progress to a new creation, a new heaven and earth, until an atonement has been made.

The atonement was made. The mortgage Satan held on the souls of men has been paid in full. The holy blood of the Lamb of God completely and perfectly made an atonement for every human being who will receive the pardon and repent of his or her behavior.

And he is the propitiation [appeasement] for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. (I John 2:2)

"The sins of the whole world."

The fallen lords of the heavens are judged by the Word of God. They are doomed to spend eternity in the Lake of Fire along with the human beings who choose their own will over the will of Christ.

What has been happening over the past two thousand years if it all has been finished on the cross?

We may remember that Adam and Eve died the day they sinned, according to the Word of God. But more than nine hundred years passed before their deaths became obvious.

So it is true that all has been finished on the cross of Calvary, but three thousand years will transpire before the termination becomes evident.

And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. (Revelation 20:11)

"The earth and the heaven fled away."

What does the Lord Jesus say to us? He commands us to be baptized in water showing that our adamic nature has been terminated and that we desire to be saved into the new creation of God. We do not want to live any longer in the dead animal creation. The deepest longing of our heart is to become part of the new creation, to become a life-giving spirit through our relationship to Christ.

We are baptized into Christ’s death and into His resurrection.

The Logos was the beginning of the first creation. Now the first creation has been finished. As in the case of Adam and Eve, the death is slowly becoming apparent. Although the present creation appears to be alive in some respect, signs of its death are revealed in the hideous behavior of people and their governments.

We are surrounded with spiritual death. We are living in the valley of the shadow of death. The world is rapidly becoming a suffocating cesspool of debauchery and destruction. The true saints are calling upon God to bring Divine judgment on what is taking place.

"It is finished"!

The Second Beginning

The old, the product of the first beginning, is passing away.

And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. (Hebrews 1:10-12)

It is time now for the second beginning.

The resurrection.

The resurrection of the Logos, the Lord Jesus Christ, marks the beginning of the new creation—the creation into which we are saved by the blood of the Lamb of God.

And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. (Colossians 1:18)

He (Christ) is the firstborn from the dead. This is the beginning of the new creation and Christ is the Author of it.

We notice also the only begotten has now become the "firstborn."

The resurrection from the dead is the fundamental nature of the new creation, of the Kingdom of God. Nothing is to remain of the first creation. Everything that is to be saved into the new creation must die and then be born again in Christ.

It has pleased the Father that all of the creation contain in itself Christ and reveal Christ’s Person and ways.

Every human being must make this decision. Will I maintain my own life, my adamic personality, or will I voluntarily assign my adamic personality to the cross and enter the new creation of God?

Will I enter the "it is finished" of the cross of Christ and reckon myself dead or will I clutch my present personality and life? Will I enter the resurrection of Christ and take my place in Him at the right hand of God far above all other rulers and lords or will I strive to maintain my own way on the earth?

To share in Christ’s death and resurrection requires a long, patient process of cross-carrying obedience. It is death to our first personality and desires. But it is the only path to the new, eternal creation of Christ.

Paul was seeking to attain the first resurrection from the dead.

If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection [Greek, out-resurrection] of the dead. (Philippians 3:11)

The first resurrection from the dead is the resurrection of the holy priesthood, the resurrection that will take place when Christ appears. We do not participate in the first resurrection on the basis of being saved but on the basis of coming to know Christ, participating in His resurrection Life and sharing His sufferings.

The forming of the Church.

And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. (Colossians 1:18)

"He (Christ) is the head of the body, the church." Christ is the beginning of the new creation. Along with Him and an integral part of Him is His Church, the Body of Christ.

We spoke previously of Adam and Eve being the two witnesses of the first massive Day of God, the Day of Form.

Abraham and Sarah are the two witnesses of the second Day of God, the Day of Separation. From the moment that God informed Abraham that his Seed would be as the stars of the heavens—from that moment all mankind was divided into the Church, which is composed of the called-out people of God, and the nations of mankind.

Between the Church and the nations is the highest, thickest wall in existence. It is the wall of the new Jerusalem. The wall of the new Jerusalem separates the world from the elect of God.

The wall of separation is eternal.

When Christ rose from the dead, the firstborn of the new creation, His Church rose with Him to the right hand of God.

In one sense there only is one resurrection—the resurrection of Christ. The resurrection of Christ continues every time a believer chooses to reckon himself dead to sin and alive to God in Christ. It is not our resurrection that is important, it is Christ’s resurrection. It is as we enter His resurrection that we live in the sight of God and enter the Kingdom of God, the new creation.

The Church is being formed on the body and blood of the Lamb just as Eve was formed from Adam. There is nothing of the first creation that will be brought over to the new creation. Flesh and blood cannot enter the Kingdom of God. Only that which has died in Christ and been raised in Christ is of the eternal Kingdom of God. Christ is the Firstborn from the dead, the beginning of the new creation of God.

Many brothers.

Here is one of the major concepts of God’s second creation—the concept of the brothers of Christ. Every member of God’s elect has been predestined to be a brother of Christ.

And we know all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (Romans 8:28,29)

How marvelous it is that Christ is to be the firstborn among many brothers!

Have we given enough thought to this concept?

The traditional doctrine of the "Trinity" has caused mischief in several directions. For example, the traditional doctrine of three Gods has alienated the Jews who are utterly resistant to polytheism. Also, the doctrine of the Trinity has made it impossible for us to relate to Christ as His brother except in some nominal, doctrinal sense. The full emotional and mental impact of what it means to have Christ as a Brother cannot be felt by us as long as we hold to the conventional abstract idea of an incomprehensible One-God-in-Three or Three-Gods-in-One.

How is a human being to relate as a brother to a Three-in-One? How can we approach a Christ, a Lamb, who is part of a Divine Abstraction that is incomprehensible? As in all other instances where we substitute man’s reasoning for the Scriptures we encounter confusion, incompetence, and an unworkable impracticality.

Are we really and truly the brothers of the mighty Christ? Yes, we really and truly are His brothers with all that the concept of "brother" includes. Christ is the elder Brother, the one having the double portion, but we are true brothers nonetheless.

We bring no pleasure to Christ or His Father by shrinking back from our relationship because of a false modesty or counterfeit reverence. If God has called us brothers, then we are brothers. There is nothing more to be said on this point!

The first and second chapters of the Book of Hebrews have much to reveal concerning the role of Christ, and our role as His younger brothers.

God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; (Hebrews 1:1,2)

God the Father has spoken to us by His Son.

God has appointed His Son Heir of all things.

God made the worlds, the spiritual worlds and the physical worlds, by His Son, just as we have stated in previous pages.

Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; (Hebrews 1:3)

Christ is the Brightness of the Father’s Glory. He is not the Father, He is the Brightness of the Father’s Glory.

Christ is the express Image of the Person of the Father. Christ is not the Father or another name for the Father, Christ is the express Image of the Father.

According to our conventional use of terms, something that is the image of something else is not that something else. If a statue is sculpted in the image of a famous person, the statue does not become the person but is the image of the person. If the statue could come to life we might say that the living statue was the exact image of the famous person. But it never would be the person!

Christ upholds all things by the word of His power. Christ is so great that when we declare He is not the Father we are not subtracting from His greatness. It is like comparing a trillion to the trillionth power with a trillion to the trillion trillionth power. Both numbers are so large that comparing them has no practical application. We can say that one is greater than the other, but both are so large they are unimaginable. So it is with Christ and the Father.

Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. (John 14:28)

Christ by Himself purged our sin by His own blood on the cross of Calvary.

Christ is seated on the right hand of the Majesty on high. Who is the Majesty on High? God!

Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. (Hebrews 1:4)

Inasmuch as the Logos created the angels it seems unnecessary to state that He is greater than the angels by inheriting a better name than they. It would appear that the Logos already is greater by virtue of having created the angels.

It may be true, however, that after being created, the angels began to hold themselves above the Logos. We see this behavior among people when the student begins to despise his teacher feeling he has surpassed his teacher.

Perhaps the most inappropriate event of history occurred when Satan, the created being, stood before his Creator and invited his Creator to worship him. The impudent, insolent, presumptuous actions of the wicked are amazing—and amazingly effective in gaining for them what they desire. The true saints tend to be humble and sheep-like and are easily trodden down by the wicked.

Satan is a usurper. Satan’s personality can be observed throughout history as men have seized the rights and wealth of others in order to better themselves. To take by force or trickery what is not lawfully ours is a wicked act. Whoever does this will eventually find himself in a barren wasteland, and there will be no relief provided or mercy shown to the one who has shown no mercy.

Christ by inheritance is greater than the angels.

For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son? (Hebrews 1:5)

Another significant although incomprehensible fact is that the saints are co-heirs with Christ.

Christ is greater than the angels because God has called Christ His Son. The Son is Lord and Heir of all, while the angels are servants in the Divine household.

And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him. (Hebrews 1:6)

Christ is to be the Firstborn among a vast number of sons. God has commanded the angels of Heaven to worship Christ, thus exalting Jesus as Lord of Heaven.

And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. (Hebrews 1:7,8)

The angels are spiritual beings, compared to a flame in that their personalities, assignments, and actions are constantly changing. They are as a wind that blows from here to there as God directs.

Christ, however, is not constantly changing, blowing from here to there. He is resurrected and glorified flesh and bones. His inheritance is the highest throne from which He will administer the laws of righteousness instituted by His Father.

Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. (Hebrews 1:9)

The preceding is an exceedingly mysterious passage.

Who has loved righteousness and hated iniquity? The Lord Jesus.

Who has anointed the Lord Jesus with the oil of gladness? The Father.

But who are Christ’s fellows (companions)?

This is a quotation from Psalms 45. It does not seem likely that the companions of Christ were or are human beings, although this is possible. What seems more reasonable to us is that after the Logos created the heavenly beings He was viewed as one of the many personages He had created—impossible as it seems. This would account for Satan’s audacity in requesting worship from the Lord.

It would account also for the fierce envy and hatred of Satan and his fellow lords toward Christ. Although Christ had created them He had been moving among them as a fellow, a companion.

Notice the interaction of the Lord and those who stood before Him in the case of Joshua the high priest.

And he (the angel of the Lord) answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment. (Zechariah 3:4)

Again:

Thus saith the Lord of hosts; If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house, and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by. (Zechariah 3:7)

"I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by." Who are "these that stand by"?

When the rebellion occurred, the Logos and some of the angels (the elect angels) stood true to the Father. The Father, noticing the Logos’ love of righteousness and hatred of iniquity, poured upon Him the oil of gladness, of joy.

And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: (Hebrews 1:10)

The Logos, Christ, created the earth and the heavens. The Father created the earth and heavens through the Logos.

They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. (Hebrews 1:11,12)

Here we notice the continuance of Christ (and those who belong to Christ and are part of Christ) and the removal of the first creation. The Logos created the earth and the heavens and the Logos shall fold them up like worn-out clothing and change them for new clothing.

"It has been finished." The wise individual, recognizing that the present physical world is doomed to extinction, will give his thought and effort to preparing for his life in the coming world of righteousness.

But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? (Hebrews 1:13)

To no angel did the Father ever say, sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool. But such a statement is made to Christ and to His co-heirs. It is God the Father who is making the enemies of Christ His footstool.

Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? (Hebrews 1:14)

Now the awesome truth is revealed. We are speaking no longer of the Heir alone but of the heirs of salvation. The tremendous Divine inheritance is to be given, not to the Son alone but also to those who have been designated as heirs along with Him. In Hebrews 1:14 we perceive the hidden purpose of the Father—that there be a company of sons authorized and competent to govern all the works of God’s hands.

The company of righteous sons, in the image of Christ and in perfect union with Christ, is God’s solution to the rebellion that occurred in the heavens in eons past.

The role of the angels is to serve as messengers of God that are sent on various occasions to assist the heirs as they strive to enter their inheritance.

How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; (Hebrews 2:3)

The thesis of the Book of Hebrews is that believers, in the light of their inconceivably great calling as sons and heirs of God, must not stop after having made initial progress in the process of redemption but must press forward to the fullness of the inheritance, to the "rest" of God. The rest of God has been attained when God’s perfect will is performed in us continually and He has settled down to rest in Christ in us.

For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. (Hebrews 2:5)

The question is one of the "subjection of the world to come." Because of the past rebellion there is a need for judgment, punishment, and protection against future rebellion. God has need of rulers, of kings, of a royal priesthood. The purpose of the Church is to serve God by ruling over the works of His hands.

And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. (Revelation 22:5)

We are saved by believing in the Lord Jesus. We become rulers by following the Lord in patient, cross-carrying obedience. Those who accept and profit from the suffering the Lord sends upon us will wear the crown of authority throughout the ages to come.

Never again shall there be an unwalled paradise, a paradise that is not guarded continually by sons of God who have learned to resist every form of sin.

Much is said in the New Testament about running the race, about warfare, about becoming a soldier, about overcoming. This is because we are being fought against as we seek to obtain the promised rulership. We have to fight in the Lord for every square inch we gain. We must always be diligent that someone does not take our crown, not our salvation but our crown of rulership. God’s sons are called to the throne of glory.

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. (Revelation 3:21)

There is no higher throne than the throne of Christ. That throne is being created in our heart. We are being prepared so we may properly occupy, in Christ, our own personality.

No human being ever can find peace or fulfillment until the throne room in his or her personality is occupied by the Son, and the Father in the Son. We have been created to be governed and occupied by Another. This is the true and eternal meaning of the Divine fiat, "male and female created he them."

It is only as the Father and the Son find perfect rest in us that we are allowed back into the throne room of our own personality—there to sit in that highest of all thrones with the Lord Jesus Christ.

"Unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come." We are speaking of "the world to come," the product of the second beginning. It has not been placed in subjection to angels but to the heirs of salvation.

Now we come to the enlargement of what God spoke concerning man in the beginning—that man would govern the works of God’s hands.

But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: (Hebrews 2:6,7)

What is man? A question for philosophers!

God is ever mindful of man and visits him often.

God made man a little lower than the angels.

God crowned man with glory and honor.

God placed man in authority over the works of God’s hands.

If we will take these four statements to heart and ponder them carefully we will gain insight into the purpose of God in creating man.

Christian fables view rest and peace in Paradise and a splendid mansion as the reward for serving the Lord. But God’s purpose in man is not that man rest for eternity in a garden but that he be crowned with glory and honor as a son of God and govern righteously the works of God’s hands. God’s eternal plan is a reaction against rebellion, and has to do also with the other aspects of God’s purpose that we mentioned previously.

Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. (Hebrews 2:8)

"All things" have been placed in subjection to God’s sons. God speaks in a timeless vision. It seems to us in the present hour that the first world order is going to endure and that man forever will be the slave of Satan and his own lusts and self-will (unless he can escape to the spirit Paradise).

The Word of God declares otherwise. The first world was finished on the cross and now is dying and passing away.

And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away. (I Corinthians 7:31)

And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. (I John 2:17)

"And the world passeth away."

God’s words concerning His sons shall certainly be fulfilled in detail. They shall rule in glory with Christ.

All things have not as yet been placed under the feet of redeemed man, but they shall be!

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. (Hebrews 2:9)

"But we see Jesus." What are we implying here? We are emphasizing that the Lord Jesus is the Firstborn of a company of brothers who will inherit all that God has created.

Two facts must be considered. First of all, although the Lord Jesus is the Firstborn among many brothers He still is the Logos from eons past—that which is true of none of the rest of us. God has made Jesus both Lord and Christ. He is the lawful Head of the Church.

Second, while we are called to be sons of God, if we would inherit the Divine promises we must "overcome." Many forces strive continually to tear us down from the high place to which we have been appointed. We can overcome all of these by the blood of the Lamb, by the word of our Spirit-filled testimony to the truth of God’s Word, and by loving not our life to the point of death. If we come short in one of these three areas we then are neither authorized nor competent to be a member of the royal priesthood or a participant in the first resurrection from among the dead.

The Scriptures declare that the rewards go to the conquerors. The Scriptures will stand when the earth and the heaven flee from the face of God.

We have been taught in the churches that every believer regardless of his behavior will inherit the Divine promises of glory and rulership on the basis of mercy and grace. We have been taught a lie.

The immortal Jesus became a mortal and died on our behalf. Now He is crowned with glory and honor. Through Him we too can obtain immortality, honor, and glory.

For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. (Hebrews 2:10)

All things are for the Father and exist by Him. He is bringing many sons to glory. This is part of His eternal purpose in Christ.

Christ is the captain of the salvation of the many sons. God made the eternal Logos a mortal and exposed Him to the sufferings of the present world in order that He might be made perfect.

It appears the rulers of the world to come cannot be made perfect in obedience to the Father except by suffering. If such suffering were available in the spirit world, the Logos would have been made perfect at some distant point in the past. But we see that it was necessary for Him to become a mortal and thereby experience the pains and pressures that accompany mortality.

He, the Lord Jesus, the Logos, Christ, was made a perfect Leader of the many sons by the process of suffering.

For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, (Hebrews 2:11)

The Lord Jesus is the One who sanctifies us with His blood, His Spirit, and His Word. He and we are all from the same God, the same Father. On this basis He is not ashamed to call us brothers.

Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. (Hebrews 2:12)

The Lord Jesus, our elder Brother, declares the name of His Father to us. He reveals the Father to us.

All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. (Matthew 11:27)

The Son reveals the Father to those whom He has chosen.

While we of the churches are singing praises to the Father, the Lord Jesus is raising holy hands in Heaven and singing praises to the Father.

Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. (Hebrews 2:17)

The Logos has been made like us so He can serve as our Priest before the Father. Christ is able to save us to the uttermost because He ever lives to make intercession for us.

We have a heavenly calling. It is to respond to God’s eternal purpose to which we have been summoned. The Father knew us before the creation of the world. He predestined us to be a brother of Christ. He called us. He justified us. He has in mind to glorify us.

Our responsibility is to lay hold on the heavenly calling, to not come short of it. The Book of Hebrews warns us that we will not escape the judgment of God if we neglect to press each day into the perfect rest of God, into the place of abiding where God’s unhindered will is being exercised in us.

The thousand-year Kingdom Age.

In between the present deteriorating world and the new world there will be a thousand-year (whether literal or figurative) period in which the Lord Jesus and His victorious saints in glorified bodies will be governing flesh and blood people—the people of the nations of the saved. The capital city of the earth will be physical Jerusalem.

It appears the purpose of the thousand-year interval between the deteriorating world and the new world is to provide a buffer, a period of submission, reconciliation, and adjustment. It is likely that during this period the Bride will be perfected. No doubt the new Jerusalem, the new heaven, and the new earth will be so spectacularly more resplendent in Divine Glory than anything we ever have experienced that we could not enter the holy city as we are now. We shall need the Kingdom Age to refine our personalities until we are ready to behold the Face of God.

Esther had to have six months of the bitter and six months of the sweet before she was presented to the King. We are having our six months of bitter during our pilgrimage on the earth. During the Kingdom Age we shall have our six months of the sweet as we work alongside of the Lord Jesus and become accustomed to the holiness and purity of the heavenly Kingdom.

The thousand-years may be a period of transition from earth’s dark valleys to the Divine Glory of the new Jerusalem.

The way to the Father.

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)

The problem that gave rise to God’s eternal purpose was the rebellion of God’s nobles in the heavenlies. The Divine solution to the problem of the rebellion will result in a universe of creatures who have been totally reconciled to the Father through the Lord Jesus Christ.

And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. (I Corinthians 15:28)

That God (the Father) may be All in all—this is the goal of the eternal purpose of God.

The authority, the power, and the goal.

The Divine salvation works in three stages. The first stage is that of salvation. The second stage is that of the Holy Spirit. The third stage has to do with obedience to the Father.

One could picture the three stages in the following manner. Let us say a person sought employment in an industrial plant. First he would have to be hired. He would receive the badge and the uniform that authorized him to go past the guard at the gate and enter the plant. So it is when we believe in Jesus, repent, and are baptized in water. The blood atonement forgives our sins and we are born again of the Spirit of God. We now have been authorized to be part of the Kingdom of God.

Let us say further that the new employee was directed to a tool room. There he was given certain tools that he would need in order to do the job for which he had been hired. This is similar to our receiving the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit gives us the tools, the wisdom and power to walk in holiness, and also to bear witness of the atoning death and triumphant resurrection of Christ and the soon coming of the Kingdom of God to the earth.

Finally the new employee would be shown to the area where he was to work, introduced to the foreman, and instructed in what to do.

The Christian churches have received the authority of the blood and the born-again experience. They also possess the wisdom and power of the Holy Spirit to overcome sin and to bear witness of the Lord.

But the believers have not known what the job is. During prior centuries of the Christian Era the assumption was made that the goal, the output of faith in Christ, was to get ourselves and as many other people as possible to Heaven, there to rest forever in a mansion.

But now God is showing us the job, the task, the product expected from the authority and power we have received.

We spoke before of some of the objectives God has in mind, such as the creating of an eternal temple for Himself, the perfecting of a Bride for the Lamb, the developing of members for the Body of the Anointed Deliverer, and the training of a royal priesthood to serve the needs of the nations of saved peoples of the earth.

At this point, however, we shall emphasize a supreme goal of redemption. It is that we might be perfectly reconciled to the Father through the Lord Jesus.

Notice again:

And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. (I Corinthians 15:28)

The goal is that God may be All in all in every creature of the new heaven and the new earth. To this end God is making all things new, creating all things in Christ.

Total reconciliation to God and His will on the part of every creature signals the end of the great rebellion of Satan and his angels.

We do not mean by this that all angels or people will eventually be saved. This is not true as we understand the Scriptures.

The Lord Jesus is the Way to the Father, the Truth of the Father, and the Life of the Father. No person ever at any time comes to the Father except through the Lord Jesus.

Our objective is to find our perfect fulfillment, joy, and rest in the bosom of the Father. This is where Jesus resides and He desires that we be with Him where He is throughout eternity.

The feast of Tabernacles.

The twenty-third chapter of the Book of Leviticus sets forth the seven feasts of Israel. The first three celebrations, Passover, Unleavened Bread, and Firstfruits, symbolize the basic salvation experience. The Lord Jesus is emphasized in the basic salvation experience, although all members of the Godhead are Present and active in every aspect of our redemption.

The fourth feast is the familiar Pentecost. The Holy Spirit is especially active in the fulfillment of this feast as He guides us into holy behavior, gives us power to build up the members of the Body of Christ, and guides and strengthens us so we may bear witness of the resurrected Lord Jesus to every nation.

The last three feasts of Leviticus, Chapter 23 are the blowing of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, and, finally, the feast of Tabernacles. Trumpets and the Day of Atonement speak of war, of judgment against evil spirits and the self-will and rebellion of human beings. The work of judgment culminates in quiet, restful obedience to the Father and makes possible the spiritual fulfillment of the convocation of Tabernacles. The Father and the Son come to dwell in us as we keep Christ’s Word. It is the Father who is emphasized at the latter stages of redemption.

God becomes All in all.

We may have known Jesus to a certain extent. Some of us are more familiar with the work of the Holy Spirit than is true of others.

Now it is time to come to know the Father. How wonderful it is that we have received the Spirit of adoption and are crying, Father! We have understood doctrinally that Jesus is in the Father, the Father is in Him, and we are in Them and They in us. Such Oneness is taught clearly in the Gospel of John.

But now we are beginning to know by experience that the Lord Jesus is in the Father and we are in Him. The Father is becoming ever more real to us. Indeed, our elder Brother is bringing us to His Father and His God.

At that day ye shall know I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. (John 14:20)

Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. (John 14:23)

To know the Father is to experience the rest of God. It is not that any of us knows the Father to any great extent. Neither do we know the Lord Jesus to the depth He desires. But we are sons of God and we are growing. As we grow we become conscious that the Lord Jesus is our elder Brother who is slowly, patiently preparing us so the Father may be All in all in us. The Lord Jesus must put down every enemy in us before God can find His rest in us.

First, salvation. Then, the baptism with the Holy Spirit. Finally the Father and the Son take up Their eternal abode in us.

The Lord Jesus is the dwelling place of the Father. Christ is Zion, the Hill in whom God dwells. It is as Christ is formed in us that the Father can find rest in us because God lives only in Christ.

The making of all things new.

And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. (Revelation 21:5)

"I make all things new."

God is so great one wonders if God did not realize before the Logos existed, or before the Logos created the temporary first heavens and earth, that the first spiritual and physical realms would serve merely as forms for the second eternal heavens and earth. Given the unfathomable wisdom and knowledge of God, this is entirely possible.

If God indeed did understand prior to the first beginning that rebellion was inevitable and that the first creation would be temporary and expendable, then we have the classic pattern of life—the pattern of inheritance, loss of inheritance, and regaining of inheritance.

It appears creatures seldom can hold anything they have been given the first time. The classic pattern of life is that we are given something of value; we have no way of appreciating the worth of what we have been given and promptly lose it through some means; we perceive we have lost the valued gift and begin the long, arduous task of gaining it back; we finally gain back the lost gift enhanced in value; we now are able to appreciate, maintain, and use wisely and profitably what has been given to us.

This is the story of the prodigal son, of Samson, of mankind on the earth, of the Christian Church, of each one of us in some way or another. It often is true of our relationship, our talents, or our very health. We cannot seem to receive something one time. To maintain and use what we have been given in the proper way requires that we gain it a second time.

The classic pattern may be true of the two beginnings. God knew His creatures could not appreciate, maintain, or use profitably what He gave on the first occasion. Therefore He created temporary spiritual and physical worlds. But what God had in mind before time began was a spiritual and physical world based upon the exact Representation of Himself and governed by the Representation of Himself.

Known unto God are all his works from the creation of the world. (Acts 15:18)

As we have stated, all created things, whether of the heavens or the earth, must be made new and must become part of Christ. How the angels will become part of Christ we do not know. But if God is to be All in all, and if God will dwell only in Christ, then the angels will be touched with Christ in some manner.

However, redeemed man will not only be touched with Christ but will have Christ dwelling in him. To become the dwelling place of the Father and the Son is possible only to human beings.

Man was created to be the chariot of God and the ruler and judge over all the works of God’s hands.

The Kingdom of God is first an inner kingdom, and only after the inner kingdom has been established can there be an outer kingdom. The Seed of the Kingdom is Christ.

Some people will reap Christ one hundredfold. These are the firstfruits of the Church.

Some will reap Christ sixtyfold. These are of God’s elect but have not attained the fullness that is possible and available. Some will reap Christ thirtyfold. These no doubt are the members of the nations of the saved; for there shall be no more sea, no more mass of people who do not possess at least a portion of Christ.

Not only angels and people but the spiritual and physical environments as well will be part of and reflect the Glory that is Christ.

The new earth will probably be many, many times the size of the present earth for it must support a city fifteen hundred miles in height, fifteen hundred miles wide, and fifteen hundred miles in length.

All shall be made new and all shall be part of the resurrected Christ. The resurrected Christ will have a new name to signify His new beginning and the victorious saints will possess that new name of Christ.

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. (Revelation 3:12)

When God has brought all things under the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ, then the Lord Jesus will be subject to the Father that the Father may be All in all. This marks the end of the rebellion and the beginning of untold ages in which every day (if time then is marked in days) will be more joyous, more glorious than the previous day.

The new heaven and earth reign of Christ Jesus—ages without end.

The new heaven and earth reign of Christ was symbolized by the celebration of the feast of Tabernacles, and particularly by the eighth day of Tabernacles.

Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein. (Leviticus 23:36)

"The eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you."

The eighth day of the feast of Tabernacles (Simchat Torah—rejoicing over the Law) was and continues to be a time of exceedingly great rejoicing for the Jews. The eighth day of Tabernacles symbolizes the first day of the week of eternity, the week that has no end.

In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (John 7:37,38)

During the new heaven and earth reign of Christ the nations of saved peoples of the earth will be able to come and partake freely of the Life of God now flowing from the city of God, that is, from within the saints.

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. (Revelation 22:17)

The most marvelous aspect of the new heaven and earth reign of Christ is that the Throne, the center of Government of God and the Lamb, will no longer be in the spiritual heavens but will reside eternally on the physical earth, the new earth.

And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: (Revelation 22:3)

Jeremiah prophesied that the day would come when the city of Jerusalem would be the throne of God. Since Heaven is the throne of God (Isaiah 66:1), Jeremiah was saying Jerusalem would become "heaven."

At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart. (Jeremiah 3:17)

"They shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord."

Heaven has come down to earth. The throne has been joined to the footstool in Christ. He is the ladder reaching from earth to Heaven on whom the angels of God ascend and descend.

God’ work has been finished since the creation of the world.

For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. (Hebrews 4:3)

By the time of the feast of Tabernacles in the land of Israel, all the various fruits and vegetables have been harvested and processed. It is a time of thanksgiving for the past year, the long summer drought is over, and the fall, planting (former) rains are anticipated.

The Law of Moses is read during the feast of Tabernacles and there is great rejoicing over the Law.

Also day by day, from the first day unto the last day, he read in the book of the law of God. And they kept the feast seven days; and on the eighth day was a solemn assembly, according unto the manner. (Nehemiah 8:18)

When the new Jerusalem descends from the new heaven to reside eternally on the new earth, all of the aspects of God’s eternal plan will have been accomplished.

The rebellion will be a thing of the past. The huge, impenetrable wall, the resistance to sin that has been created in the members of the Body of Christ, will eternally prevent sin and rebellion from entering the Presence of God, the Lamb, and the Lamb’s Wife.

The Logos will have been established as the Center of a new creation, filling all things in the heavens and on the earth with Himself. The Logos will be subject to the Father who subjected all things to Him, and now the Father will be All in all.

A bride will have been prepared for the Lamb. The Bride is the new Jerusalem, the Lamb’s Wife, the Church, the Tabernacle of God, the holy city.

The love of the Lamb for His Bride is as intense as the Nature of God. The Song of Solomon speaks of the Lamb’s love for her. She is more important to Him than a thousand heavens.

Of all of the dimensions of redemption we have mentioned, it is the love of the Lamb for His Wife that is the most important. The Lamb can create a thousand heavens in a moment of time. But the development of a perfect, unblemished complement for the Lamb of God is an exceedingly difficult, complicated, lengthy process.

It is impossible to rightly comprehend any aspect of the Christian salvation until we begin to have some idea of the love of the Lamb for His Bride. It is His love for her that is His motivation for all He does.

The marriage of the Lamb is at hand, and what a time of rejoicing it will be when the Bride finally has been made ready for her Husband.

A living temple for God will have been created. From eons past the Father has desired a living house, a dwelling place in which He can find rest and appear among His creatures, guiding and blessing them. He has made Christ the chief Cornerstone of His living house and we are being made living stones of the house of God. The new Jerusalem is this perfected, glorious, eternal Tabernacle of God. Now the Tabernacle of God has come down to dwell among saved mankind forever.

God has formed a body for Christ, the Servant of the Lord. Christ is the Head of the Body. Christ—Head and Body—will bring salvation to Israel and justice and peace to the nations of saved peoples of the earth.

God has prepared sons who can properly receive and administer God’s Holy Spirit. The administering of the Life of God’s Holy Spirit, the bringing of eternal Life to all saved people, will not be performed randomly or as rain from Heaven. The saints will minister eternal Life from their personalities. The creation waits for the revelation of the sons of God so the creation may be brought into the liberty of the glory of the children of God.

Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them [paths to God; the ways to Zion; the highways to Zion]. Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools. They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God. (Psalms 84:5-7)

The above passage describes the victorious saints. They, through Christ, are Jacob’s Ladder—the holy highway from earth to Heaven. Their role is to bring God’s blessing to the prisoners of the earth.

At one time the Paradise of God was on the earth. But the garden in the east of Eden was an unwalled paradise. There was no protection, no righteous, holy army to keep the wicked lords of the heavens from entering and spreading the poison of self-will. The members of the Lamb’s Wife are "terrible as an army with banners." They are wise and strong enough, through Christ, to maintain God’s Paradise on the earth.

The governing priesthood will have been established when the new Jerusalem descends to the earth. These are priests after the order of Melchizedek serving by the power of an endless life [an indestructible life]. Now the saved peoples of the earth have priests who can bring them to Christ so every need may be met. The fruit of the royal priests brings eternal life to people and their leaves bring healing. They are trees of life because Christ, the Tree of Life, is dwelling in them.

The eternal witness of God will be on the earth. No longer will any of God’s creatures, human or angelic, need to speculate on the Person of God. His Person, His ways, His will, and His eternal purpose in Christ will forever be made clear through the new Jerusalem, the Bride of the Lamb.

A father takes great delight in sons who follow in his steps. The sons of God will follow in His steps. Those who, through Christ, overcome the world, Satan, and their own lusts and self-will, will be God’s sons and He will be their God. They will inherit all the things of God.

God is forming brothers for Christ. At the beginning of the first creation the Logos was the only begotten of the Father. Since His triumphant resurrection from the dead Christ has acquired many brothers. He is the great elder Brother, the Leader of our salvation. We indeed are tiny by comparison with our elder Brother. But we are true brothers of Christ, nevertheless, and genuine sons of God.

Through Christ, God has created victorious saints who have overcome the rebels of the spirit world. They have overcome the accuser by the blood of the Lamb, by their Spirit-directed and empowered testimony, and by loving not their lives to the point of death. They have writhed on their crosses and endured patiently and cheerfully their prisons. They have stayed true to Christ. As a result, the accuser has been cast down from his place in the heaven and never will be permitted to return.

Never again will there be a voice accusing God’s sons before the Lord’ Presence. The saints have overcome their accuser through the Virtue of Christ. The rebellion is finished.

God has established governors for the nations of the saved. The central problem of the world of today is that it is governed by wicked, self-serving people. If it were not for the wickedness of the rulers, spiritual and physical, there would be peace and abundance for everyone.

All of this mismanagement will be a thing of the past when the holy city is established on the new earth. The sons of God will be seated on the thrones that govern the earth. The sons of God are servants at heart and people of utmost integrity. Before they have been permitted to ascend the throne, every element of their personality will have been sifted and have passed through the Divine fire.

The new rulers can be trusted by God and man alike to rule righteously, humbly, compassionately, and in the fear of God. It will not be as it is today where the rulers use their position of authority to benefit and exalt themselves at the expense of those whom they are governing.

The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God. And he shall be as the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, even a morning without clouds; as the tender grass springing out of the earth by clear shining after rain. (II Samuel 23:3,4)

What a great blessing a righteous king can be! There is no better form of government than a kingdom ruled by a righteous king who loves and serves God.

Democracy has seeds of death in it, as can be observed by the steadily deteriorating moral condition of the nations that have had a democratic form of government for any period of time. It appears people need stern rule if they truly are to be free.

It has been given to the saints to judge humans and angels. God is the greatest of all judges. God has given all authority of judgment to His Son, Christ. Christ executes the Divine judgment through the members of His Body.

Christ has given the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven to His anointed saints. Whatever the saints bind on the earth is bound in the heavens. Whatever the saints loose on the earth is loosed in the heavens. To the anointed saints has been given the authority to remit and retain sins.

The authority to refuse some people and angels entrance to the Kingdom of God and to permit others to enter is indeed a terrible power. But is has been assigned to the sons of God. They are the gates in the wall in the new Jerusalem. We shall be given this authority because Christ is in us and with us and we are part of Him.

The impenetrable wall surrounding the city of God symbolizes the resistance to sin that has been created in the personalities of the victorious saints. They have been submerged for years in the filth of the world, the filth of the satanic spiritual environment, and the filth of their own personalities.

Little by little, command upon command, rule upon rule, they have struggled upward. They have climbed the "secret places of the stairs" that are known only to the cross-carrying disciples of the Lord.

They have grown to love righteousness and hate iniquity. They are not merely righteous, they are militantly, aggressively righteous. They have been clothed in white robes, in bodies that also are militantly, aggressively righteous.

Throughout the eons to come, when it enters the spirit of any angel or any human to rebel against the Father, the rebel instantly will be faced with a saint whose face is as steel. "Repent of your wickedness or prepare to spend eternity in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur." Standing at each side of the outraged saint will be angels of gigantic stature carrying their razor-edged swords, ready to avenge all disobedience to the Father’s will.

Rebellion against the Father’s will has been finished forever.

Once there was only God, dwelling alone in the Light that He Himself Is. There was no one to see Him, to love Him, or to have fellowship with Him. There was nothing that preceded Him because He always is.

Then came the first beginning. From the Father proceeded the Logos, the Word, the express Image, the exact Representation, called God by the God from whom He issued.

Now God could be seen had there been anyone to see Him.

Then the Father (whether understanding this was to be a temporary universe, the form of which would be made eternal at a later period, we do not know) spoke through the Logos, the eternal Light and Word of God, and the angels came into being.

The Prophet Ezekiel states that Lucifer was perfect in his ways until iniquity was found in him. The Lord Jesus declared that Satan was a murderer from the beginning. These two statements appear to be contradictory. Perhaps the meaning is that Satan was a murderer from the time that the rebellion began.

Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. (Ezekiel 28:15)

"You were perfect in your ways."

Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. (John 8:44)

"He was a murderer from the beginning."

Since the Scriptures cannot be changed and are always true, the Lord Jesus may have been referring to a different "beginning" than Ezekiel’s "from the day that thou wast created." It is not likely that the Divine Word created a murderer and liar. It is more probable that Satan became a murderer and liar from the time he conceived rebellion against the Father.

We are approaching the time when Satan will be overcome by the saints, will be cast down from the heaven, and all sin will be brought to an end. It may help us to realize at one time Satan and the other rebellious angels were the friends and companions of Christ. We humans are newcomers on the scene. The fall of the ancient monarchs and the rise of the brothers of Christ to positions of preeminence in the creation is no light matter. Smug, glib behavior on our part is not appropriate.

There were the Father, the Logos, the angels, and a horrible rebellion against the Father.

God then declared His eternal purpose. He would create a new kind of being, permit the new creatures to be infected with the poison of the rebellion, and then make an atonement for them. After this He would fill the new beings with the Logos and, using the Logos as the Cornerstone and the building material, fashion a perfect revelation of Himself.

The new, living Representation and image of the Father would be humbled, taught perfect obedience, compassion, and continual dependence on God, and then clothed with surpassingly glorious bodies. The assemblage of glorified holy ones would then be the new Jerusalem, the city of the living God.

And we know all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be changed into the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. (Romans 8:28-33)

The elect shall be named "the Lord our Righteousness" because they have become the righteousness of the Lord God through Christ.

Forever and ever—throughout the countless ages of eternity—the Person, ways, will, and eternal purpose of God will be clear to all men and all angels as they behold and contemplate the new Jerusalem, the Bride of the Lamb. The holy city is the eternal covenant of God with man.

All rebellion, all sin and sinners, angelic and human, will continue to exist but will be confined in a lake that burns with fire and sulfur unceasingly.

The Kingdom of God is God in Christ in the saints governing the nations of saved peoples of the earth. Woe to the nation that will not come up to Jerusalem to celebrate the tabernacling of God in His elect! Upon that nation shall be no rain, neither spiritual nor physical rain. The people of the disobedient nation will abide in a barren desert with other rebellious spirits and, if they do not repent, their nation finally will be destroyed.

For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted. (Isaiah 60:12)

The Day of Form, as witnessed to by Adam and Eve, will have found fulfillment in the "all things new" of the new heaven and earth reign of Christ. All things of the creation must be made new in Christ or they cannot enter the new world, the Kingdom of God.

The Day of Separation, as witnessed to by Abraham and Sarah, will have found fulfillment in the wall of the new Jerusalem. God’s holy family, His elect, His anointed, forever will be separated from the other nations of the earth. The purpose of the wall is to separate the precious from the vile, the holy from the unholy.

Therefore thus saith the Lord, If thou return, then will I bring thee again, and thou shalt stand before me: and if thou take forth the precious from the vile, thou shalt be as my mouth: let them return unto thee; but return not thou unto them. And I will make thee unto this people a fenced brasen wall: and they shall fight against thee, but they shall not prevail against thee: for I am with thee to save thee and to deliver thee, saith the Lord. (Jeremiah 15:19,20)

The Day of Righteousness, as witnessed to by Moses and Aaron, will find fulfillment in the holiness of the holy city. The holy Law has been made flesh in the form of Christ and now is being made flesh in all those who are an integral part of Christ. The Law made flesh in the form of the new Jerusalem is the covenant that God has made with mankind—a covenant that states if people will choose to belong to the Lord and not to themselves, the Lord God will consent to be their God and to dwell among them in the form of His Tabernacle—the Lamb and His Wife. The Lamb and His Wife are the Olive Tree, the true Israel, the Heir of the "all things" of God.

In Israel the nations of saved peoples of the earth shall behold the righteousness and praise of God.

For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations. (Isaiah 61:11)

The fruit of righteousness shall come forth from the nations of the saved because of the Presence of Christ—Head and Body.

He shall cause them that come of Jacob to take root: Israel shall blossom and bud, and fill the face of the world with fruit. (Isaiah 27:6)

The "fruit" for which the Father waits patiently is the righteousness and holiness of the moral image of Christ.

The Day of Light, as witnessed to by the Father and the Son, has found fulfillment in the glorious light that radiates from the throne of God and of the Lamb, the light in which the nations of the saved walk.

"Light," in this instance, is not an abstract energy, it is a Person.

In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. (John 1:4,5)

"The life was the light of men." The Life of Christ is the only true light of God. As His Life is formed in us, light is thrown on our path. We begin to walk in the ways and will of God.

The new Jerusalem will serve as the light of God, a light that will enable the nations of saved peoples of the earth to avoid destruction and obtain peace and prosperity.

The nations of today are in moral darkness. Relationships among people are destructive. People do not know how to use the things or the environment of nature. In their drunken, lustful violence the people of the nations destroy all that God has created—even their own children. The obsession with lust, violence, covetousness, and sorcery that is filling the wealthy democracies of our day is a foreshadowing of the age of moral horrors that is at hand.

Only the Life of Christ can give the understanding and power that people need in order to cease destroying themselves, their children, and their environment. In the new world the Life of Christ will be made available through the holy city to whoever will receive it.

In the beginning God separated the spiritual Light from the spiritual darkness. The darkness never shall be able to comprehend or overcome the Light of God, who is Christ, the Lord of all.

The Day of Life, as witnessed to by the Apostles and the Holy Spirit, has found fulfillment in the "pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the Throne of God and of the Lamb." Christ—Head and Body—will serve as the Throne of God and as a result as the source of the waters of eternal life. The waters of eternal life always flow from the Divine Throne.

And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. (Revelation 22:1)

After God and Christ have settled down to rest in us in the spiritual fulfillment of the feast of Tabernacles, it will be our greatest joy to bring forth the water of life that dead mankind may live. The Divine water will be crystal clear because the human vessels from whom it is pouring have been purified by the Consuming Fire who is God.

Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. (Isaiah 12:3)

The sons of God are the wells of salvation. As the saints with joy draw the water of life from within their personalities the knowledge of the glory of the Lord will fill the "dead sea" of the people of the nations of the earth.

They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea. (Isaiah 11:9)

For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea. (Habakkuk 2:14)

The Day of Reconciliation (the Kingdom Age), as witnessed to by the Head and Body of Christ (the "two witnesses" of Revelation, Chapter 11), has found fulfillment as God’s servants "reign for ever and ever." The rebellion of the angels alienated them from the Father. When they came down into the earth they alienated Adam and his descendants from the Father.

Each descendant of Adam comes into the world as a rebel against God. Our personality is deceitful and desperately wicked. Every nerve in our body as well as our fleshly mind hates the ways of the Father.

Christ, the Leader of our salvation, was reconciled totally to the Father as He agreed to drink the cup, to submit to the foul spirits of Hell, to be separated from the Glory of the Father that always had been His dwelling place.

Next in order comes the firstfruits of the Church. We spend the days of our discipleship learning to put to death the deeds of our adamic body and to live in the power of Christ’s resurrection and the sharing of His sufferings. Little by little, command upon command, we are reconciled to God.

To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing (ascribing) their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. (II Corinthians 5:19,20)

We begin the program of reconciliation by accepting the atonement made by Christ instead of attempting to please God by our own efforts. But the tremendous darkness of the depths of our personality must be reconciled to the Father one step at a time. The process is lengthy, full of pain and perplexity, and requires much patience on our part as we endure numerous afflictions and frustrations. All of these tribulations and chastenings are necessary, however, if we are to be reconciled to the Father.

The thousand-year Kingdom Age, the millennial Jubilee, serves, as we have stated, as a buffer between our present existence and the resplendent glory of the new heaven and earth reign of Christ. The Kingdom Age is the rule of a rod of iron, a Davidic reign of war that will subdue all opposition to the Father, making possible the Solomonic, peaceful new heaven and earth reign of Christ.

The purpose of the Kingdom Age, as we understand it, is to reconcile the whole Church to the Father, and also those nations that are alive on earth during the Kingdom Age. It is the Day of Reconciliation, the last step before the beginning of the manifestation of the new world of righteousness, the world that began in actuality when Christ rose from Hell and stepped out of the cave of Joseph of Arimathea.

The Day of Rest, as witnessed to by God and His Tabernacle, finds fulfillment as God wipes away all tears from the eyes of the members of the nations of the saved and there is no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor any more pain; for the former things have passed away.

God made the physical universe in six days, and then God rested on the seventh day. The Jewish Sabbath portrays that eternal rest to which we have been called. When we are in the eternal rest of God we do not think our own thoughts, walk in our own ways, or perform our own deeds. There is no evening and morning of the seventh day. It is all one glorious day!

We realize all things have been finished since the creation of the world and our sole responsibility is to enter the finished work of God

To rest in God in this manner requires trust.

Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. (Isaiah 12:2)

The twelfth chapter of the Book of Isaiah was sung by the priests during the observance of the feast of Tabernacles. The Jews, with their true instinct for the mind of God, rightly connected the twelfth of Isaiah with the feast of Tabernacles.

We have been given the authority and power. We have been "hired" and given the tools. The "job" is to be so totally reconciled to the Father that He in Christ can settle down in untroubled rest in us. This is the eternal Sabbath of God.

When we are fully accepting of the fact that we were born to be the dwelling place of God, and delight in our destiny and enter fully into it, then we have attained the mark, the first resurrection from the dead. We have grasped that for which we have been grasped.

Do you delight in the thought of being the eternal resting place of God in Christ? If so, tell God of your desire. Believe, obey, and persevere. God is more anxious that you should receive His Person than you are to receive Him. It is His good pleasure to give you the Kingdom.

God has made Christ to be the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. The beginning, the end, and all the programs and processes from the beginning to the end have been, are, and yet shall be wrought by the Father through Christ.

The work is perfect, performed in Divine love, and shall be brought to completion.

My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. (Song of Solomon 2:10-13)