As it is done in heaven…For the Christian, they if faithful are part of the heavenly phase of the kingdom. They are promised if faithful unto death to reign with Jesus as part of “The Christ” over the earth and to bring mankind back up the highway of holiness,
Posts Tagged ‘ Kingdom ’
Chapter 37 is known as the Vision of the Valley of Dry Bones. In verses 1 and 2 God took an interesting approach with Ezekiel. The prophet was shown the valley, but that was not enough. He had to travel all the way around the valley and really observe and be impressed with the fact that it was FULL of bones and the bones were VERY DRY.
Probably Ezekiel was transported to this valley by means of a vision or a trance. His seizure by the Holy Spirit, a private experience not shared by the people, did not necessarily occur at night—it could have happened during the day. At any rate, Ezekiel felt this experience. What do the “dry bones” suggest? Not only was there no life, but the bones had had no life for a long time. They were like the bones in Egypt dating from the Persian Empire under Cambyses II at the Amenehat Pyramid, that is, thousands of years old and very dry.
Ezekiel had to pass around the valley in order to have the scene impressed upon him. He saw “very many [dry bones] in the open valley [a broad expanse of valley, not just a gorge].” The implication is that the bones were scattered throughout the valley, and this disposition is significant for the antitype.
Jesus’ fame had spread to Tyre, Sidon, and Judea. People coming from that distance to hear him and be healed were waiting at the bottom of the mountain. After naming the apostles, Jesus came down and saw a multitude who had diverse diseases. What a pitiful sight! Jesus healed them all—after not sleeping the night before. “Virtue” (vigor and vitality) went out of him each time. And he gave a long sermon afterwards (verses 20-49). The statement “the whole multitude sought to touch him” means it was a surging multitude.
In other statements of this promise or covenant God directed Abraham’s mind to the stars and to the sand of the seashore and to the dust of the earth as illustrations of the numbers of his posterity. As yet Abraham had no child: every testimony of this kind was therefore to him a testing of his faith, a suggestion that he should inquire first for a beginning of these matters; and as days and years passed by the testing of faith was increased, yet to our joy we find that Abraham was full of faith in these promises, never doubting the power of God in some way to accomplish all that He had given him reason to hope for. Here we find a lesson for ourselves. Other promises have been made to us, some of which seem to be utterly impossible of attainment. Shall our faith stagger and shall we begin to doubt? or shall we hold fast to the Word of the Lord, nothing wavering, nothing doubting? In order to do so we must discriminate clearly between the words of man and the Word of God, so that we may reject the words of man, resting nothing upon their promises, but our entire weight of trust must rest upon the Word of the Lord.
When God manifests His GREAT POWER and the Kingdom is first established, the Holy Remnant will be frightened, for they will realize that Jesus is the true Messiah and that they, as a people, crucified him. At this time the Holy Remnant will be in no position to be leaders—they will be crushed, smiting their breasts and wailing as for an only son. These thoughts will be flooding their minds.
At the same time the Gentiles, having gone through the severe Time of Trouble, will be desperately craving blessings and help. When they see that God has delivered Israel, they will encourage the surviving Jews: “Come, let us both walk together. We know God is with you. Don’t be ashamed.” Up to this time the Jews as a whole felt that the Gentiles’ criticism of them was thoroughly unjust. Generally speaking, the Jewish people do not see the need for repentance. To the contrary, they feel they have unjustly been a scapegoat. But the Jews are sinners just like everyone else.
In describing the attitude of the Holy Remnant when God delivers them out of Jacob’s Trouble, Ezekiel says (36:31), “Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and shall loathe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations.” Previously in history the Jews may have loathed their condition or circumstances, but they have never loathed themselves before.
OUR LESSON relates to the call of Abram (high father), whom God renamed Abraham (father of a multitude), although indirectly the special point of the lesson refers to the calling of Abraham’s seed, natural and spiritual, and the divine bestowments to them, constituting them the centers of hope to the world of mankind.
The lesson is in harmony with the Scriptural declaration, “Blessed is the man who is not condemned by that which he alloweth.” That is to say, the ungenerous, the unkind, are very apt to blame others strongly for misdemeanors of which they themselves are guilty. The man whose words respecting others do not condemn himself is to be congratulated as a happy man indeed. The person whose criticism of others is so kindly, so generous, so merciful as to not involve a condemnation of his own course is certainly an exceptional man or woman. We call to remembrance our Lord’s words, “With whatsoever measure ye mete it shall be measured to you again,” and, interpreting our text in harmony with this, if our words are generous and kind, loving and benevolent we shall receive similarly kind treatment of the Lord. If our language respecting others be harsh, cynical, critical, unkind, we may expect reproofs from the Lord.
Why? Because all mankind are by nature fallen, imperfect, depraved; and the person who sees the faults of others and fails to see his own, needs the correcting chastisements of the Lord to show him his true condition reflected in his course of conduct and language toward and respecting others: he indicates that he himself needs to be taught some very important lessons without which he will not be prepared to make progress toward the Divine standards of character.
Adam is sometimes called the “father of the human race,” for all branches of the human family can be traced back to him. All have root in that one common stock. Not only was he created perfect, but he had dominion over the lower creation and sheltered them—just as in Daniel 4 the birds were on the branches of the tree and the beasts rested in its shade in comfort and serenity. The tree grew and was strong; its prominence could be seen from afar.
According to our chronology, the small Garden of Eden flourished for only two years before sin entered. In Daniel 4:13,14 a watcher, a holy one, came down from heaven and made a loud proclamation: “Hew down the tree,” etc. That “watcher” was the Logos. As a result, the tree was hewn down, the branches were cut off, the leaves were shaken off, and the fruit was scattered—all suggesting a forceful dispersion. And what happened in Genesis when Adam disobeyed? He and Eve were expelled from the Garden. Two cherubim with a flaming sword were stationed at the entrance to prohibit Adam and Eve from returning lest they eat of the tree of life and live forever (Gen. 3:24). Adam’s previous condition of dominion and lordship ceased, affecting the animal creation as well and even the earth, for he would henceforth have to till the ground by the sweat of his brow to get food. Weeds and thorns grew.
Notice how in Daniel 4:13,17 the narrative changes from the “watcher” (singular) to “watchers” (plural). The purpose of the dispersion was to teach man a lesson: “This matter is … to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.” We would call this the permission of evil. Without this experience, man would forever have a desire for the unknown.
However, there is a time limitation for the permission of evil.
In trying to understand the various sacrifices which the Lord instituted there is the very common mistake of failing to note that the Jewish code respecting sacrifices divided them (1) into sacrifices for two distinct classes,—the Levites (the High priest’s household), and all Israel (the general congregation excepting the Levites); and (2) into sacrifices of two distinct times; viz., those of the Day of Atonement, and those of the year following the Day of Atonement. This is the key to the understanding of the types of Leviticus, and without it no one can obtain clear or consistent views.
This talk covers Daniel chapters 2 and 7, also looks at Chronology, the Fig Tree and the length of a generation. What is the significance of the Smiting of the Image? What is signified by the different parts of the image and the metals used to denote the different governments? Is the Image instantly destroyed by the stone or ground to powder? Who and what is pictured by the stone? What does the prophecy of the Fig Tree have to do with the Image? All these questions are answered by this talk given by Br. Frank September 16, 2003