ENFORCING THE WILL OF GOD

ENFORCING THE WILL OF GOD Copyright Š 2006 Trumpet Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright Š 973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

There are passages in both the Old and New Testaments that tell about the elect whom God has called out from the nations of the earth. Perhaps the reason these passages are not emphasized today is that predestination and election were somewhat overemphasized a while back. However, if we are to understand God’s work in the earth, and the Kingdom of God, we have to think clearly about the role of God’s elect, the members of the Body of Christ, the royal priesthood, among the peoples of the earth.

ENFORCING THE WILL OF GOD

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,  who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. (Romans 8:28-30)

There are passages in both the Old and New Testaments that tell about the elect whom God has called out from the nations of the earth. Perhaps the reason these passages are not emphasized today is that predestination and election were somewhat overemphasized a while back. However, if we are to understand God’s work in the earth, and the Kingdom of God, we have to think clearly about the role of God’s elect, the members of the Body of Christ, the royal priesthood, among the peoples of the earth.

The doctrine of election fell into disrepute because there are passages that indicate salvation is for everyone—that whoever will may choose to come to Christ. Preservation in the day of wrath is not just for a selected few

Let us clear up this issue immediately.

The Bible teaches that whoever believes and is baptized shall be saved. This word is set in concrete.

But when it comes to the members of the Church, the called-out royal priesthood, the Body of Christ, the new Jerusalem, call them what you will, these individuals were foreknown from the foundation of the world. In fact, the world operates that these individuals might be changed into the image of Christ.

The Divine calling on the members of the Body of Christ always is an opportunity. Those so called may choose to grasp that for which they have been grasped, or they may neglect their calling. In this case, they will not remain as part of the Vine, part of Christ.

In case someone perceives unfairness when we state that the world operates that these individuals may be changed into the image of Christ, let us hasten to state that their change into the Christ is so righteousness, peace, and joy ultimately will be available to the people of the world. More about this later.

Now let us think carefully about the following verses:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,  who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. (Romans 8:28-30)

"Those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose"

Remember, we are not speaking of being saved or of going to Heaven. We are referring to God’s purpose.

If you will consider the above passage you will realize that we are not referring to the entire population of the world but to people selected out from the population of the world.

"Those whom God foreknew." I am not positive of the meaning of this expression, except that the members of the royal priesthood, the Body of Christ, somehow were known to God from the beginning of the world.

"He also predestined." God chose their destiny in advance of their birth. This predestination always is an opportunity. It is up to the individual to make his or her calling and election certain.

Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, And you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (II Peter 1:10,11)

Peter is implying it is possible to fall from our inheritance that was chosen in advance. Isn’t this true?

"To be conformed to the likeness of his Son."

If people would read their Bible we would not get into discussions about whether certain people are destined to be saved. The issue is not one of salvation, it is that of being conformed to the likeness of Christ.

"That he might be the firstborn among many brothers."

Christ is the exalted Head of the Body of Christ. Christ—Head and Body—is the Servant of the Lord, Israel, Messiah, the Anointed Deliver who is to come and deliver the physical people of Israel, and bring justice to the nations of the earth.

The brothers of Christ do not include the entire population of the world. The brothers of Christ are the members of the Christian Church—the instrument drawn out from mankind to serve as a light for mankind. The Church is the firstfruits of mankind, that is, a portion of mankind God is working with in a special manner that the firstfruits then may serve as a moral light to the remainder of mankind.

He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created. James 1:18)

One of the misunderstandings in Christian thinking is that the members of the Church are the only people to be saved. The truth is, the members of the Church are a firstfruits of mankind, separated out to serve as a light to mankind. It is not at all true, and totally unscriptural, that the only saved people are those of the Church, and the remainder of the population of the earth shall be thrown into the Lake of Fire. Actually, the remainder of the population of the earth are the inheritance of Christ and His brothers.

I am not stating that everyone ultimately will be saved from destruction. This is not true; it is not scriptural. The characteristics of those who will be thrown into the Lake of Fire are listed in Revelation 21:8. Any individual, beginning with those who are members of the Church, can choose to be saved from those characteristics and thus escape the Lake of Fire.

But any individual, beginning with those who are members of the Church, if he or she does not choose to be saved from the behaviors over which the Lake of Fire retains authority, will be confined in this most severe of penalties.

"Those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified."

Predestined, called, justified, glorified. All in the past tense.

In between justification and glorification lies the change from the image of Adam to the image of Christ. The change is wrought out during our lifetime, provided we cooperate with the Holy Spirit. The change is announced from the beginning but must be established in the present.

The Book of Hebrews employs the term "the rest of God." A member of the Body of Christ enters the rest of God when he or she chooses to cooperate with the Holy Spirit and flow along into the destiny already determined by the Lord.

To not enter the rest of God is to continue, because of our unbelief and disobedience, living our life in the manner we deem best, not endeavoring to grasp that for which we have been grasped by the Lord.

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. (Philippians 3:12)

I think we have established thus far that God has selected certain members of mankind to be changed into the image of His Son. The important image is that of relationships. We are to relate to God and Christ as Christ relates to God. We are to relate to one another as Christ relates to people. Being the light of the world means we show the people of the world the proper manner in which to relate to one another. The problems of the world are due to faulty relationships.

The Kingdom of God is the Church, the new Jerusalem. The people of the world who will be saved from destruction, and who will receive eternal life from the members of the Bride of the Lamb, from the royal priesthood, are designated "sheep." They are brought into the blessings of the Kingdom because they assisted the brothers of Christ when the brothers were in distress.

All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. (Matthew 25:32,33)

The Kingdom is being prepared (we saints are being prepared) to bring God’s will and blessing to the "sheep" God has chosen.

The Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life. (Revelation 22:17)

The above is the invitation given by the Spirit and by God’s priesthood, the Bride of the Lamb, to God’s sheep. The sheep are invited to receive eternal life, just as today we would invite people to receive eternal life in Christ.

Then the King will say to those on his right, "Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world." (Matthew 25:34)

Then they [the goats—those who refused to assist Christ’s brothers] will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life. (Matthew 25:46)

We understand to this point that God’s elect are a kingdom which the sheep nations will inherit. We inherit them, and they inherit us. God loves the people of the world and He is changing us into the image of His Son that we may bring His Presence and blessing to every person who calls on the Lord. The reason we are tested and shaped as we are is that the people God has created may receive the good that God has for them. We are being formed to benefit people, some as yet unborn.

The most important gift we will bring to the sheep is the will of God. In fact, we shall enforce that will with a rod of the Spirit until they are doing God’s will perfectly.

The Kingdom is the doing of God’s will in the earth as it is in Heaven.

Let’s think back to the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve did not have sin dwelling in their flesh, as we do. They were not pressured by demons, as we are. God Himself was present with them in visible form, apparently, which is not true of us.

Why did they sin? Why did they not do God’s will? There was no worldly, Antichrist spirit to seduce them!

They sinned because they were given a choice. They could choose to do God’s will, or they could choose to follow their own will in the path outlined by Satan.

This is the way it will be after the Lord returns.

Notice the following:

Jesus replied, "The people of this age marry and are given in marriage. But those who are considered worthy of taking part in that age and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage, And they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God’s children, since they are children of the resurrection." (Luke 20:34-36)

After the Lord returns, the members of the nations who were not destroyed in the Battle of Armageddon will be in an environment filled with the Holy Spirit. The Glory of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea.

The sons of God will go throughout the earth destroying the works of Satan and casting out evil spirits. Satan himself will be bound in the bottomless pit.

Consider: a Holy Spirit-filled environment; no demons; no works of Satan; and no world spirit polluted by Antichrist.

The Lord Jesus Christ will be seated on the throne of David on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

The nations will recognize that Jerusalem is the capital of the world.

Many peoples will come and say, "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths." The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)

Many of the sources of evil have been removed from the earth.

The major source of evil remains.

And what is that?

The will of human beings.

God made all of us, and the angels also, with the ability to make choices. The ability to choose is the essence of the human being. If we no longer could make choices, we could not love God; for love is a choice one makes. For this reason God shall not remove our will.

But if we are to maintain Paradise, once it is restored to the earth, there cannot be even one individual who makes a choice outside the will of God.

How can God leave our wills intact, and yet insure that no person will choose to disobey God?

The answer is, God is creating the Church, the Kingdom of God, the Body of Christ, the Bride of the Lamb, the sons of God, the brothers of Christ, the new Jerusalem. Call them what you will. These people are the royal priesthood, God’s elect, God’s true Israel, whether of the Old Testament or the New; whether Jewish or Gentile by physical birth.

The Christian Church, the elect of God, began with the patriarch Abraham. All who are part of the Lord Jesus Christ are the one Seed of Abraham. These are the brothers of Christ, the household of God of which the Scripture speaks. These compose the eternal Temple of God, the new Jerusalem.

These people will enforce the will of God on the sheep, on the people whom God has chosen to be saved but who are not part of the royal priesthood.

The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. (Revelation 21:24)

There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever. (Revelation 22:5)

"They will reign for ever and ever."

The saints will govern the nations forever. They will enforce the will of God throughout the universe. They are the judges of men and angels.

The original sin was self-will, a willingness to act outside of God’s will. Perhaps no creature had ever before thought of doing this.

How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain.  I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High." (Isaiah 14:12-14)

All sin that exists has been the result of Satan’s willingness to choose to do other than God’s will.

The most important issue in the universe today is that of the will of God. Who will choose to do it?

We Christians, who have been chosen by Christ (we did not choose Christ; He chose us), have been made aware of the atoning blood of the cross and have chosen to receive it as the payment for our sins.

We also have chosen to receive God’s Spirit.

Both of these actions have been obedience to God.

Now we have to press forward in the Holy Spirit until we are completely obedient to the Head, to Jesus Christ, in every area of our life. Until we are totally obedient to Christ in everything, we are not qualified or competent to be raised from the dead when He appears and to descend with Him to install the Kingdom of God on the earth.

There cannot be one soldier in Christ’s army who is not totally obedient to the Commander in Chief. There cannot be one member of the Body of Christ who is not completely obedient to the Head. When a member of our own physical body is not completely obedient to the head we are ill.

How does God go about creating total obedience in us?

God brings us through many fires, many floods, many prisons, until we are obedient to Christ at the deepest level of our personality.

There are different levels of the will. We see this in the prayer of Gethsemane:

Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done. (Luke 22:42)

Notice the two different levels of the will. One will of Christ was to avoid the cup of suffering. A higher will took over and chose to drink the cup.

So it is that if we are to serve a members of the governing priesthood, we must be perfected in obedience.

If you are reading the present essay it may be true that God already is dealing with you concerning obedience to God. You may be experiencing much discomfort as you are serving God. Will you choose to remain in your prison until God releases you? If so, you will receive the crown of life. You now are qualified to govern with Christ because you have been obedient during your time of imprisonment, as was the patriarch, Joseph.

But if you are not willing to remain in miserable circumstances but are seeking to break out of your prison, then you will not master the lesson of obedience and you will not govern with Christ. You will not be raised from the dead when He next appears because you still are part of the problem rather than part of the solution.

The most important work of the Kingdom in the present hour is that of building the Body of Christ. Do you want to be a member of the Body of Christ? If so, bring every decision of your daily life to Christ. Learn utter responsiveness to the Head. Keep Jesus before you at all times, in all that you do. Call upon the Lord for His Presence and help the moment you awaken in the morning. Continue to call on the Lord throughout the day. Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. This is the Bible promise.

We can be saved through the blood atonement, be filled with the Spirit of God, and yet not have learned obedience to Christ. We can be a pastor or missionary and yet not have learned obedience to Christ. It often is true among the ministers of the Gospel that there is covetousness, seeking preeminence, lying, gossiping, and other works of the flesh. This is because there has not been a striving for total obedience to the Head, to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Many Christian churches are prisons of unclean spirits because of the works of the sinful nature—all due to a lack of seeking obedience to the Head of the Body.

There is no such thing as a local body. There is only the one Body of Christ. We can speak correctly of a local assembling, but there is only one Body. I think it helps us when we remember that.

If we will seek obedience, we will be filled with the Morning Star, with Christ. Then we will be qualified and competent to enforce obedience on the peoples of the earth.

To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations— He will rule them with an iron scepter; he will dash them to pieces like pottery just as I have received authority from my Father. I will also give him the morning star. (Revelation 2:26-28)

How should we then pray?

This, then, is how you should pray: "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:9,10)

We all want the Kingdom of God to come to the earth. The Kingdom of God is the doing of God’s will in the earth. The saints are being conformed to the image of Christ so they themselves shall do the will of God, and then will be able to bring all saved people to the doing of God’s will.

There is only one legitimate Will in the universe. To understand and accept this, and then to act accordingly, is to enter the rest of God.

The reason God has chosen each Christian, each saint, is that he or she may be changed into a competent member of the governing priesthood. As such the individual belongs to God in a special manner. He or she is God’s representative among people.

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. (I Peter 2:9)

One understanding being made real to us today is that Christ, Messiah, the Anointed Deliverer who is to come, consists no only of the great Head, the Lord Jesus Christ, but also of a Body that is totally responsive to the Head. We can be a member of Christ’s Body if we are willing to learn to obey the Head in every aspect of our being and behavior.

The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. (I Corinthians 12:12)

The following is the proclamation made by Jesus Christ whenever and wherever He appears. It must become our song:

Then I said, "Here I am, I have come—it is written about me in the scroll.  "I desire to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart." (Psalms 40:7-8)

Worship is becoming increasingly vital and enjoyable in our day. One aspect of worship is that of presenting our body as a living sacrifice. Until we do this we cannot possibly discover the will of God for ourselves. People are being prophesied over in our day, but these inspiring words will not come to pass in our life until we deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow the Lord Jesus.

Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:1,2)

Do you want eternal life? Then be careful to do the will of Christ in every aspect of life.

The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever. (I John 2:17)

There are two things each of us needs to understand about the new covenant, the Christian covenant.

The first is that the new covenant is made only with the house of Israel. God’s promises always are to Israel. We can receive these promises only by becoming an integral part of true Israel, of the Seed of Abraham, through the Lord Jesus Christ.

The second thing we must come to realize about the new covenant is that it is the writing of the law of God in our heart and mind—not just the blessing of God but the law of God.

The Christian religion views the new covenant as a plan of salvation that forgives us and bring us, when we die, to Paradise in the spirit realm. This is not the new covenant. The new covenant is the inscribing of the law of God in our heart and mind so we obey God in all matters.

The surest sign of the growth of Christ in us is that we can recognize the difference between good and evil, and have the desire and strength to embrace the good and reject the evil.

Many Christian believers of our day are babies when it comes to choosing between good and evil. They have been taught incorrectly that it does not matter whether they choose good or evil because they have been saved "by grace." Thus they utterly misunderstand the new covenant.

It is interesting, isn’t it, that Satan has managed to warp a covenant designed to create the image of Christ in people into a ticket to Heaven for unchanged people. Our adversary is exceedingly cunning. But there is One who is more cunning, and He shall prevail.

This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. (Hebrews 8:10)

In our day the Spirit is emphasizing judgment, that is, He is pointing out to us Christians what is evil in our personality. When this happen to us we are to confess our sins, renounce them with all our might, and turn to God for forgiveness and cleansing. We are to do this throughout our lifetime—as often as we are reproved by the Spirit.

Christ is a King and a Man of war. God has put all authority and power of rulership and judgment in His hands. If we are to reign with Him we need to understand we have not been called to sit in Heaven but to work with Him in establishing the will of God throughout the creation. Man was created to govern, to rule in righteousness..

God’s love and mercy are so great as to be beyond description. But they are overemphasized in our day. While we are proclaiming God’s love and mercy the Spirit, in many instances, is reproving those of us in America concerning our lukewarmness and sin.

The LORD says to my Lord: "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet." The LORD will extend your mighty scepter from Zion; you will rule in the midst of your enemies. (Psalms 110:1,2)

Can you feel the power and authority of government expressed in the above passage?

Today there are members of the Christian religion who are not responsive to the Head, to the Lord Jesus Christ. They are not functioning members of the Body of Christ.

An age of physical and moral horrors is approaching. No Christian will be able to stand in victory, or to save his loved ones, or to be of assistance to those who know not God, unless he has learned in the present hour to obey the Head in every aspect of life.

We are in a time of change. The Christian religion as we have practiced it no longer is adequate to overcome the spiritual darkness that is spreading its tentacles throughout America. We who are leaders must keep on warning the American believers of the dangers to come.

Those who are comforting the believers with the thought they will be in Heaven during the time of trouble are well meaning, but they are leaving their congregations unprepared for the vicious expressions of Satan that God will permit to be unleashed on us in America. We have murdered fetuses. We have perverted the marriage relationship. We have killed one another. We are worshiping money and pleasure. We have turned our back on God and His ways. No nation of history has done this and survived, and the United States of America will not be an exception.

Those who are slain will be the fortunate ones, because they will have died before the coming problems have caused them to deny God. Suffering and death should not be our fear. Our fear should be that we will turn away from Christ!

I do not know how long we have, but I do feel the pressure to warn! warn! warn the people to prepare themselves to stand in the day of trouble!

God is good, and He is going to chastise America in order to save a remnant of the population.

Remember, the will of God shall prevail ultimately. The sooner we choose to do God’s will from the heart, no matter how much distress this may cause us temporarily, the sooner we will find peace and joy in the Presence of God. His commandments are not grievous. It is God’s good pleasure to give us the Kingdom, as soon as we decide this is what we truly desire.