Friday, July 11, 2014

Welcome

July is now posted.

We will be posting the Glorious Gospel articles individually below. The previous month's publication will be found under the Archive tab as pdf's. We will begin posting some studies, as pdf's and as ebooks in the coming months.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Our Lord’s Cloud Crowd And Rainbow Coalition

By Jack Davis

John beholds in vision a most notable person, “another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire:” – Rev. 10:1.

WHO IS THIS? Often in scripture, the word translated angel denotes a messenger. Here we see God’s most mighty Messenger of all. This title is indicative of the ability and the authority He possesses for the office He is about to fulfill. This one is indeed the Messenger of the covenant of Malachi 3:1-2. He is here about to make it even more clear that “The heavens do rule in the affairs of earth.” As we consider His description and conduct we don’t have to guess who this is. “HIS FEET AS PILLARS OF FIRE” – we may equate with those of the “Son of man” of Revelation 1:15. “And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace.” “HIS FACE AS IT WERE THE SUN” is seen also in His description in Revelation 1:16; “And his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.”

CONSIDER HIS ACTION AND ATTIRE: “He set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth”  (10:2) and is seen taking possession as rightful sovereign of land (Jews) and sea (Gentiles). He asserts His right, and His purpose to enforce it. He shouts with power (v. 3), “as when a lion roareth:” He is beginning to exercise His authority as the “Lion of the tribe of Judah” (5:5), who “hath prevailed.” The cry of the Almighty Judge brings forth a mighty response from heaven; “seven thunders uttered their voices.” vs. 5-6, He swears with authority “that there should be time no longer.” The times and seasons have now been placed in His (the reigning Son’s) power, Acts 1:7. Oh yes, Jesus, our Lord, will have taken hold of the situation, and He will allow no more time for the rulers of the nations to usurp His rightful place!

There will have been one on the scene who thought to change the times and the laws. Daniel fore-saw him in his vision recorded in Daniel seven. In the interpretation of that vision he is spoken of as one that “shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change the times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time, (3 1/2 years). But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion…” Dan. 7:25-26. Then dominion shall be given to the One who comes with the “CLOUDS OF HEAVEN,” and this Son of man shall be given “dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed” Dan. 7:14.

HIS ADORNMENT “CLOTHED WITH A CLOUD:” This “cloud” signifies the saints in glory being associated with Him when He is taking charge on earth. Thank God, we need not be wells without water nor “clouds that are carried about with the tempest (II Pet. 2:17. I am so glad that we have real substance to share, as that great “cloud of witnesses that compass us about” and encourage our faith in running our race (Heb. 11 & 12). I rejoice in those already assembled in heavens grand stands. Could not this cloud be made up of those who received a better resurrection? Heb. 11:35. How about those bodies that came out of the graves after Jesus’ resurrection? Mt. 27:51-53. Consider the cloud crowd that received Jesus out of the disciples’ sight as He ascended into heaven. Acts 1:9-11.

Daniel fore-saw one like the Son of man coming with the clouds of heaven in Dan. 7:13. In the Gospels, we have the record of Jesus speaking of His revelation, as being seen coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” Mt. 24:3; 26:64.

In I Thess. 4:14,17, we read of those who sleep in Christ, whom God will bring with Him, and that we which are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air. Jesus is soon going to be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels. When He shall come to be glorified in His saints (holy ones), and admired in all them that believe. We can plainly see some contrast here. His crowning glory will be manifested in those who appreciate and have appropriated His mercy and grace in abundance, in order to realize in experience His holiness. “They which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ” – Rom. 5:17.

CROWNED WAS A RAINBOW UPON HIS HEAD: we sense some of the magnificence of our Lord’s mercy and grace, to His highest glory. What was Paul’s crowning glory? Was it not the overcoming saints? Those lovers of the race, those gaining victories over the tossings of the law and falsity? “Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved” – Phil. 4:1. “For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? For ye are our glory and joy” – I Thess. 2:19-20.

If those of that day were Paul’s crowning glory, shall not we be also? And if Paul’s, may we not even more so be Christ’s? He shall be admired. Some will reflect a measure of Christ’s glory. Glorified, some will radiate and be radiant in His glory. The Apostle John saw the holy city, coming down from God our of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for Her husband. Then one of the angels told John that he would show Him the Lamb’s wife. Then John being carried away in spirit to a great and high mountain, saw her “Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious” – Rev. 21:2,9-22.

Consider God’s ideal in the marriage relation, even for symbolic worth. “The man (Christ) is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man” – I Cor. 11:7. Praise God, Jesus will soon present to (by the side of)  Himself a glorious church.

Let us make the rainbow connection, consider Gen. 9:8-17 After the flood, God promised never to destroy all flesh again by water and set His bow in the cloud as a token of that covenant. This is just beautiful, “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” God symbolized His mercy and grace by setting His bow in the cloud. Oh, how compassionate God has been to pity and pardon mankind – not giving us what we deserve, but giving us what we do not deserve. The rainbow was a token that said judgement is past; the sun is still shining.

“And above the firmament that was over their heads was a likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it…I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about. As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain…This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD” – Eze. 1:26-28. Such an awesome sight of beauty and glory, put Ezekiel upon his face. Jesus seems to be the only one said to be surrounded with a rainbow.

In the rainbow’s many colors, we may behold the varied and radiant glories of our Lord Jesus Christ as revealed in His saints. By the Holy Spirit’s anointing, we may feast faith’s eyes on the manifold wisdom of God, manifested in the Church – Eph. 3:10. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.” He has chosen us and predestinated us in Him, according to the good pleasure of His will. “To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved” – Eph. 1:3-6. Do you see the rainbow?

God worketh all things after the counsel of His own will: That we should be to the praise of his glory.” We “were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory” – Eph. 1:11-14. God, who is rich in mercy, in the ages to come is going to show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness to us through Christ Jesus (Eph 2:4,7). Oh! Can we see His rainbow?

So it is God who set His rainbow in the cloud. The cloud is ever highly precious. It will be wonderful to adorn Jesus as part of His cloud crowd, but the rainbow within is special. Oh, to be set as part of His rainbow coalition, we may enjoy the height, the peak, of being our dear Lord’s crowning glory. This must be love’s true motivation for crown winning: to bring Him the most glory possible.

“A THRONE WAS SET IN HEAVEN.” “And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round the throne, in sight like unto an emerald. And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold” Rev. 4:3-4. This seems to give us a partial view of our Lord’s ruling cabinet. Consider Zech. 3:8, “Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that set before thee: for they are men wondered at…”.

The King’s company will be made up of those who are called and chosen and faithful (Rev. 17:14). They will not come from just the red-skinned people, nor the yellow, nor the black. There will also be some white there and all the shades in between, all the colors of God’s beautiful universe. His crowning glory, His rainbow coalition will be made up of full overcomers of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation (Rev. 5:9). They will be priestly kings and kingly priests, worshipping rulers and ruling worshippers – living creatures and elders.
By J. D.
THE LAST DAYS

Anita Clark

"Watch therefore, for you know not what hour your Lord may come. Therefore be You ready; for in such as hour as you think not the Son of man cometh" Matthew 24:42,44.

CHANGING TIMES IN THE WORLD – Have you noticed how fast the world is changing? More and more we hear of traditional values being set aside. We are truly living in the last days. Wars are increasing, persecution of Christians is increasing, even in the USA more and more rights of Christians are being trampled upon. Violence is increasing.

CHANGES IN CHILDREN – A dedicated Christian school teacher expressed her dismay at the increase of all sorts of disorders in school age children. These are just a few of what are called disorders found in children today: Developmental Dyslexia, Visual Attention Disorder, Temperament and Disruptive Behavior Disorder, Eating Disorder, Sleep Disorder, and others. American Psychological Association has been studying these, trying to see if they can come up with a cause. They have found that there is a connection between violence on TV and video games which may lessen a child’s sensitivity to pain and suffering of others. They believe that a child tends to imitate what he sees. Also, I believe that not enough adult supervision and care is being provided. II Timothy 3:2 speaks of how that in the end time children will be "disobedient to parents unthankful and unholy, without natural affection." The trend of the times is that the care of the children including physical care and love, is being neglected as well as Spiritual neglect, not being taught to love God in the home. These problems are definitely signs of the end of this age.

PALESTINIAN CHARTER – The Midnight Call Magazine reports that the PLO charter expresses its violent opposition to Israel in Articles 1,6, 19 and 20. This is a quote as follows:

Article 1: Palestine is the homeland of the Arab Palestinian people: it is an indivisible part of the Arab homeland and the Palestinian people are an integral part of the Arab nation.

Article 6: The Jews who had normally resided in Palestine until the beginning of the Zionist invasion will be considered Palestinians.

Article 19: The partition of Palestine in 1947 and the establishment of the state of Israel are entirely illegal, regardless of the passage of time, because they were contrary to the will of the Palestinian people and their natural right in their homeland, and inconsistent with the principles embodied in the Charter of the United Nations particularly the right of self determination.

Article 20: The Balfour Declaration, the mandate for Palestine, and everything that has based upon them, are deemed null and void. Claims of historical or religious ties of Jews with Palestine are incompatible with the facts of history and the true conception of what constitutes statehood. Judaism, being a religion, is not an independent nationality. Nor do Jews constitute a single nation with an identity of its own; they are citizens of the states which they belong.

Regardless of what the Palestinian charter declares, God’s Word declares a different story. God chose Israel as His own special people. He promised Abraham the land in Genesis 15:18, when He made a covenant with Abram and his seed, declaring, "Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, Euphrates." The promises He made to Abraham, He renewed to Isaac and to Jacob, that He would bless their seed as "the stars of the heavens and as the sand of the sea, "and that the land belonged to them. Apostle Paul boldly states. "I say then, Hath God cast away [to push off or reject] His people? God forbid...." (Rom. 11:1). And though Israel was cut out of the tree, "God is able to graft them in again" (vs. 23).

Isaiah prophesied, " and it shall come to pass in that day, that the remnant of Israel, and such as are escaped of the house of Jacob...shall stay [support ones-self, lean, rest, lie or rely] upon the LORD, the holy One of Israel, in truth. The remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, unto the mighty God." (Isa. 10:20). Jeremiah 23:3 says, "And I will gather the remnant of My flock out of all the countries whither I have driven them, and will bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and increase... Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth...and this is the name whereby He shall be called THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS." "...Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land; And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all; and they shall no more be two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all" (Ezek. 37:21-22).

Israel has returned in part to their land, however many are satisfied to remain in other lands where they prosper. Of those who have returned many are not believers in their God or the Scripture. Instead they are ultra-modern, self satisfied and wealthy. God has definitely been divinely working in the process of those who have returned, and of their statehood and establishment of the nation once again. But, the tribulation of seven years is coming. Before that time Israel will make a covenant or treaty for peace, which they will think will bring them what they are seeking after. Right now it seems like the nations are trying to force them to accept the terms of compromise put forth by the Palestinians for peace. (Dan. 9:27). They will eventually accept the terms, but what a mistake it will be.

The "Peace Talks" have been on hold at present. Recently, Foreign Minister Titus Coriacea of Romania speaking with the Foreign Minister of Israel said, "Israel and the Palestinian Leaders must find a way to resume peace negotiations." He said that the European Union wants this also.

We are not sure if they sign a covenant with the nations for peace if this will be the one that Daniel 9:27 speaks about, but we feel it is likely. Isaiah calls this treaty a "covenant of death and with hell," in Isaiah 28:15&18, "Because you have said, we have made a covenant with death and with hell, are we at agreement when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us; for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves...And your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then you shall be trodden down." About midway through the seven years of tribulation, the Antichrist will break the covenant with Israel and will begin to persecute and war against them until they two-thirds of them will be destroyed, leaving one-third (Zech. 13:8) who at the end of the tribulation will look up and see their Redeemer - Jesus Christ coming in power (Matt. 24: 27-31, Rev. 1:7; 19:11-20), and great glory to rescue them. He will call all of Israel who is left to come and be a part of His earthly kingdom. His Word is sure and will be fulfilled.

POPE FRANCIS HOLDS A PRAYER SUMMIT – On June 8, 2014, after visiting Israel, which was called "a historic milestone," the Pope invited Israeli President Shimon Peres and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to come to the Vatican for a prayer session for peace. They agreed and traveled to Rome to a private garden at the Vatican, although these governments are officially not talking to one another. Special music was played by an orchestra made up of 3 Christian musicians, three Jewish musicians, and three Muslim musicians during the 2 hour ceremony. Prayers were also said for peace by clerics of the three representative religions. The article said, "The words of the prayers were intended to thank God for His creation, to seek forgiveness for the failure to act as brothers and sisters and ask for peace in the Holy land." The world press said, "The Prayer Summit was a remarkable show of the new pope’s intention to mix spiritual matters and real world diplomacy."

The article quoted Shimon Peres who is ninety and nearing the end of his seven-year term as Israeli president as stating, " I was young and now I am old. I experienced war, I tasted peace. Never will I forget the bereaved families - parents and children - who paid the cost of war. And all my life I shall never stop to act for peace, for the generations to come. Let us all join hands and make it happen."

The first thing that I thought of was Revelation 13, where the Word tells of the False Prophet, who will be the helper of the Antichrist. He will be a religious man, who will aid the Antichrist and exalt him before the world, causing all the world to worship the beast. It seems significant that the pope after visiting Israel and talking peace would initiate this Prayer Summit at this time. God only knows at this time who the False Prophet is, but time is short, we are fast approaching the end of the age. Any peace gained at this present time is a false peace that will only last a short time and will be broken.

OTHER SIGNS OF JESUS’ SOON COMING – There are many other signs of the soon coming of Christ. If our eyes are open we see them all around. For example the weather, which is getting more and more violent and strange with more frequent tornadoes, more violent than ever before. Earthquakes increasing in number, especially around the "Ring of fire." Everyday we hear of more disasters happening.

Also, School shootings. Have you ever heard of such horrible happenings? People are more and more mixed up in their minds, acting out in such wicked ways. Satanic influence is increasing. We used to think that demon possession mainly happened in foreign countries, but now, we see more and more devilish activity right here in the this nation, especially among the younger population.

His coming is so near. Press on weary Pilgrim! We will soon see His lovely face. His promises are sure. "Cast not away therefore your confidence, which has great recompense of reward. For you have need of patience, that, after you have done the will of God, you might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and He that shall come, will come, and will not tarry" (Heb. 10:35-38).
He's All I Need

The song is very simple; "He's all I need, He's all I need. Jesus is all I need." And yet, it is very profound. In a world where we are constantly bombarded with advertisements for the many things we need, that we didn't even know we needed, what a great revelation to realize that Jesus is all we really need.

It is true that we, as human beings, need certain things. We need water and food to survive. We need shelter and clothing for protection. However, above all other things, we need Jesus. He is the one that provides for us all that we need.

Jesus made this statement: “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”  Mark 8:36. This is such an important lesson to learn. Satan would like us to spend our time and energy pursuing all manner of things in this world. Things that have no lasting value. Things that can distract us from our Lord. What profit will there be in that?

Paul states it this way; “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” Philippians 1:21. “But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ” Philippians 3:7. “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” Philippians 4:13

Something so simple and yet so difficult. He's all I need. When life is going quite contrary to our expectations, He's all you need. When the doctor gives bad news, He's all you need. When we can't see the horizon and can't make sense of anything, He's all you need. When you've lost all that is dear to you, He's all you need. How often we look to other people, places and things, when we need to be looking to Jesus.

Coming to the realization that Jesus is all we need brings us to a place of great freedom. We don't often realize just how much the things in our life hold control over us. When we understand that everything comes from our Lord, those things lose their control over us. There is no greater freedom than when we get to that place where we truly understand and believe that Jesus is truly all we need.

Some lyrics from a song by Genelle Tennant:

He's all I need when I just need someone to talk to,
He's always there to hear my prayer each time I call him;
All my needs He supplies, my thirsty soul He satisfies,
He's the Lord of lords, He's all I need.

He comforts me when I'm weary and eases every pain,
Fills my deepest longing time and time again;
He's my soul's inspiration, my heart's consolation,
He's my everything, He's all I need.

He's all I need, I need not turn to any other,
For He's a friend I can depend closer than a brother;
On this friend I can rely to be my strength as life goes by,
He's the Lord of all, He's all I need.

Gordon Crook
RUTH

Debra Isenbletter


Ruth 2:9 – “Let thine eyes be on the field that they do reap, and go thou after them: have I not charged the young men that they shall not touch thee? and when thou art athirst, go unto the vessels, and drink of that which the young men have drawn.”

In these words of Boaz to Ruth, he sets before her wonderful promises. These promises begin with a choice that he gives her, for he says “Let” and “go.” He will not force her. In Boaz’s promises to her we see his Direction, his Protection and his Provision. If she chooses to “let” him direct her steps, the rest will follow! He has already told her where not to go: “go not” (vs 8) and now he tells her where to go: “go after” and “go unto” (vs 9).

Direction: This direction is two-fold in concerns Looking and Following.

Looking:  “Let thine eyes be on the field that they do reap.” Boaz begins with looking, he tells her where her eyes need to be focused. It is a gentle command, it is a gentle request, for grace says “Let.” She must let her eyes see only what God wants her to see. It is not just any field but only the field that belongs to Boaz that she must look at. When she sees what belongs to Boaz, she sees several things: she sees his provision, she sees the abundance of the field (the grain) and she sees the activity in the field (the reapers). It is only in the field of Boaz that she will find true blessing. A child of God receives this same command to look. We look at what belongs to Christ and see His provision, we see His “field” and His fields are rich with what will nourish and sustain us. His fields are filled with His promises, His words; this is the grain that feeds us. As a child of God what we look at is important, and how we look is important. As we look we want to obey Him and as we look we learn love Him more and fall more deeply in love. (John 14:21,23). This is not a casual look or a quick look, it is an intense look. We look with purpose, we look knowing we will find what we need. “Let thine eyes look right on (with fixed purpose), and let thine eyelids look straight before thee” (Prov 4:25). We look away from what distracts us to what attracts us – “Looking unto Jesus” (Heb 12:2). We look to what is before us (our future) and not what is behind us (our past), we look “forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forth unto those things which are before” (Phil 3:13-14). Grace shows us wonderful things, glorious things, if we will only “let” and look! That look gives us a different view, it affects how we live and how we love. We look at “eternal” things (2 Cor 4:18); we look “on the things of others” (Phil 2:4); we look “for the Savior” (Phil 3:20).

Ruth is to look at two things and only look at those things. She is to look only at the field of Boaz, it is only in his field that she will find blessing. She is to look only at the servants of Boaz, his reapers, for they lead the way. Boaz figures Christ and his field those blessings He sets before us. They are the “promises of God” which “are in Him” (2 Cor 1:20); they are “exceeding great and precious promises” (2 Pet 1:4). When we look at Him and His promises we are blessed beyond all measure. We are “enriched by him” (1 Cor 1:5) and blessed “with all spiritual blessings” (Eph 1:3).

Following: “and go thou after them.” This is an important step in going in the right direction, the first step is to look, and the second is to follow and Boaz tells her who she is to follow. We need to do more than look; we need to act, to react, to respond in a positive way. We can look all we want but if we don’t take a step forward we won’t go anywhere. This is what happens after her eyes look in the direction Boaz points. She will act, she will respond, she will “go after” those individuals and those things because Boaz has told her to. The word “go” means “to walk” or “to follow” and the word “after” means “behind” or “beside.” Both are necessary, we may begin by following “behind” others but there will come a time when we are walking “beside” those servants, serving just as faithfully and zealously. This is to be her purpose of heart, for she will start and not stop until she is finished. Jesus calls us to “go after” or “follow” Him! He said this to Peter and Andrews when He called them (Mt 4:18-20) and to James and John (Mt 21:22) and to Matthew (Mt 9:9) and all followed him. He says this to us today. Jesus did warn that there is a cost to following Him (Mt 16:24) it is the choice of discipleship, of sacrifice, of obedience. But there is an irresistible call when we hear His voice. It is the call of the Shepherd to His sheep, we hear His voice, He knows us and we follow Him and Him alone (Jn 10:27). We follow Him not just as sheep following their Shepherd but also as servants following their Master (Jn 12:26) – we follow so that we may serve Him. This is what Ruth did, she followed Boaz’s instructions so that she might better serve him!

Protection: His protection begins with his charge to others and ends with her consecration.

His Charge: “have I not charged the young men that they shall not touch thee?” This is the next promise we see in Boaz’s words to Ruth. We see here two things, his Charge and her Consecration.  In his charge we see his authority, this is his command, this is his word, this is his protection, and none can touch her or hurt her, verbally or physically. By staying in his field, she is protected and by following his servants, she is protected! It is both his word and her obedience becomes her protection. There is now a “hedge” around her like there was around Job (Job 1:1) and unless it is removed nothing can penetrate it. His words become her refuge and guard her, it is as though the angel of the Lord “encampeth round about” her. (Ps 34:7). This promised protection will give her time to learn and to love; a time free of battles with others. His promise becomes a protection from what others say, none can condemn Ruth! Like Ruth, we have a Boaz, Christ and He protects us from those who would condemn us! He says “our iniquities are forgiven” and our “sins are covered” (Ro 4:7-8). There is “no condemnation to them in Christ Jesus” (Ro 8:1). Ruth hides herself in Boaz’s promises and nothing can penetrate, just as we are “hid with Christ in God” (Col 3:3).

His Promise:  “they shall not touch thee”. This is the result of her obedience to his words and the result of his protection, it is this wonderful promise to Ruth, and this promise reveals the full fruitfulness of what her obedience brings forth. This promise concerns her separation and consecration; it is her preparation; it is why they cannot touch her. This is also a declaration that she belongs to him, he has claimed her! During this time he will watch her conduct and he will find it satisfies all his expectations. He will see that she doesn’t follow after the young men (3:10) and that she is a virtuous woman (3:11). The Bride of Christ will have this same testimony, she is consecrated, she is separated, she is “espoused,” she is called a “chaste virgin” (2 Cor 11:2). The Lord’s provision and purpose is that we be “holy” with no “spot or wrinkle or blemish” (Eph 5:27), and it is the Word of God that does this work, that prepares us so that when the Lord sees us, He can say “Thou art all fair, my love, there is no spot in thee.” (Song 4:7) Ruth by her obedience, like the Bride, will have the testimony that she “hath made herself ready.” (Rev 19:7-8) Ruth’s submission and obedience to his words will change her life forever.

Provision: “and when thou art athirst, go unto the vessels, and drink of that which the young men have drawn.” Finally at the end of Boaz’s promise we find a wonder provision for Ruth, we see her need and how he satisfies it. We see what she does and what he does. He knows her need and because she is now his servant, he can provide for her need. This is the Lord’s promise to all His servants, it is a promise of full provision. In Isaiah God gives a comparison between what His servants have and what those who are not His servants don’t have. He says, “Behold, my servants shall eat … behold, my servants shall drink … behold, my servants shall rejoice, behold, my servants shall sing for joy of heart.” (Isa 65:13-14). This is a full, glorious provision, and this is what Ruth will be able to do because she belongs to Boaz. This is the offer Jesus made, it was to come to Him when they were thirst and that He would satisfy their thirst and the result would be joy. (Jn 7:37-38).

Ruth was thirsty, Boaz knew of her thirst: “and when thou art a thirst” (her need)– he told her where to go to quench it: “go unto the vessels” (his provision) – He told her to drink freely – “and drink” (her obedience) – others would provide for her – “of that which the young men have drawn.” (his providers). In type this is not a thirst for salvation but for sanctification. This is a thirst for the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. The Lord tells us where we can go, it is to those vessels belonging only to Him. The provision can be found nowhere else! The satisfaction can only come if we drink. For Ruth, has a right and a privilege, to be refreshed and satisfied, but she must “go” and “drink” in order to enjoy that privilege. How many of God’s people don’t do this? Boaz not only provides the water but the providers, who have drawn the water. Christ’s true ministers, who preach the “gospel of Christ,” the “glorious gospel,” the “word of truth.” This gospel is the only foundation (1 Cor 3:10-11) and His servants will help Ruth to be that “virtuous woman” that he will see at the end of the harvest. Just like Boaz, Jesus knows our need. He alone is able to provide for that need and satisfy us fully, but we, just like Ruth, need to come and to drink!

Boaz rewarded Ruth (a stranger) with much more than the law required. This is grace! Grace goes above and beyond what we need, Paul describes what grace does five times in Romans 5, it is there we see the word “much more” repeated five times! This is what Boaz provided and what Jesus provided for us. The provision is there, the rest is left up to Ruth, to accept or reject, to embrace or turn away. She will accept what Boaz offers with humility, humbleness and gladness! Let us do the same!
The Feasts of The Lord

Leviticus 23 – Part 5

by Earlene Davis

The Feast of Trumpets

V. 23-25, “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,  Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation. Ye shall do no servile work therein: but ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD.”

Trumpets is the first of the year-end feasts. A long time elapses between the feast of Pentecost which is in the third month and the feast of trumpets in the seventh month. This is very significant and portrays the two thousand plus years that have passed since Pentecost. It reaches on to the end of this age and the fulfillment of the seventh-month feasts.

The Jewish name for this feast is Rosh HaShanah, which means “Head of the Year.” The Jews have two calendars. The seventh-month of their religious calendar marks the beginning of their civil year, so it is their New Year’s Day.

God commanded the blowing of trumpets to call the congregation of Israel together for a solemn assembly, a day for rest and worship. Their day begins in the evening. The high priest would sound a trumpet to signal the field workers to come into the Temple. The faithful would stop harvesting and leave immediately for the worship service. Remember the feast is a sabbath, a rest, they were to do no servile work. God insists that His blessings to the church, to Israel and the world are all of grace. It is a holy convocation, no works of man allowed.

God seems to enjoy the trumpet. In biblical times the trumpet was a ram’s horn. It is called the Shofar. Remember how Isaac was spared by the ram being caught in the thicket by its horns – Gen. 22:13. In Isaac’s place, the ram was offered. The ram’s horn is the symbol of this sacrifice. This typifies gloriously the sacrifice by our heavenly Father of His Son. Also the willingness of the Son to offer Himself up for the salvation of all men. He was the only one who could accomplish this. Eph. 5:2 “… walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.”

In Exodus 19:16, the blast of the trumpet acknowledged the presence of God before His people. It was sounded to herald the year of Jubilee – Lev. 25:8-10; signaling the release of slaves and debt, proclaiming liberty throughout all the land. God also used the blowing of trumpets when Joshua conquered Jericho – Josh. 6:5. Joshua’s name is Yeshua in Hebrew, the Old Testament name for Jesus. Ehud blew the trumpet to call the Israelites to battle – Judg. 3:27. The sound of the trumpet was heard as the people went to the fortified cities in Jeremiah 4:5. It was blown to warn of danger as enemies tried to stop the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem. “In whatever place ye hear the sound of the trumpet, resort ye there unto us: Our God shall fight for us” – Neh. 4:20. Also when a new king took the throne, the trumpet would sound a loud blast – I Kings 1:5-39.

According to Jewish teaching, Rosh HaShanah is the beginning of ten days of judgment when all the children of men pass before the Creator. The righteous are written into the book of life, and the wicked are condemned and given ten days to repent and escape judgment. We, who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life do not fear judgment, for Jesus bore our judgment on the cross.

This feast like the other feasts is prophetic. It tells us of the home call of the saints of this dispensation, the Church Age, as well as that of Israel. The Church will be taken up to heaven and Israel called to their homeland. We are looking and waiting for Jesus, when He shall come with the trumpet sound and the voice of the archangel to bring us into His sabbath of rest. There remaineth a rest for the people of God – Heb. 4:9. When that trumpet sounds, a great miracle will take place. The graves will give up the believing dead and the living believers will rise up from the earth. Oh, what a day that will be, to see Jesus and enjoy heaven. I Thess. 4:16-17.

I Cor. 15:51-52, “Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” All believers will be clothed with a body like unto Christ’s – I Jn. 3:2.

The last trumpet sound means there are other trumpet sounds, a first, a second, etc. Read I Cor. 15:21-23, “…every man in his own order (or rank).” One of the big controversies in Christendom is that some say the rapture of the church is pre-tribulation and some say post-tribulation. What does the Scripture say?

Rev. 3:10 tells us of a group or rank that will go up before the tribulation, for they will be kept out of that hour that is coming on the earth. We see this group in Rev. 4 & 5 as the elders and living creatures in heaven. Rev. 5:8-10, they are redeemed ones out of every kindred, tongue, people and nation, made unto God, kings and priests. They are the first group to arrive in heaven, the first rank taken up.

In Rev. 7:9 we see an innumerable company of saints in heaven. Verse 14 tells us, they come out of tribulation days. This is another rank or company of the church that cannot be numbered.

In Rev. 14, we see another rank of the church in heaven, the 144,000 of Israel. So there will be more than one trumpet sound. There will be an holy convocation convening in heaven with each trumpet sound.

A remnant of Jews will be in the church, but Jeremiah tells us concerning the nation of Israel – Jer. 8:20. The nation will come into their blessings after the church has all been gathered home and tribulation ended. Then the trumpet will sound for their return to their land – Isa. 27:12-13. God will move on to fulfill the next and most sacred of Jewish feasts, Day of Atonement, in next month’s issue.

Friday, June 6, 2014

SPIRITUAL CONSTRUCTION

By Jack Davis

I Cor. 12:31 “…covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.”
I Cor. 14:12,26 “…forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church…Let all things be done unto edifying.”
Eph. 2:19-22 “…ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

The Scripture is filled with instruction concerning a constructive attitude in  God’s building, and in Christ’s body. We who are members of Christ’s body, and part of God’s building, should be laborers together with God, as He gives the increase. Each one shall be rewarded according to his individual responsibility. Therefore we are to take heed how we are building and the material we are using in our lives.

The Holy Spirit would give us precious instruction in this area, as we consider the charge that King David gave his son Solomon and the Princes of Israel concerning the building of the house for the Name of the Lord. David said, “The house that is to be builded for the Lord must be exceeding magnifical, of fame and of glory…Now SET your heart and soul to SEEK the Lord your God; ARISE therefore and BUILD ye the sanctuary of the Lord God, to BRING the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and the holy vessels of God, into the house that is to be built to the Name of the Lord” – I Chron. 22:5,19. Let us draw spiritual benefit as we think on these five words from verse 19: Set, Seek, Arise, Build, and Bring. May these give us some insight so that we may aspire, enquire, inspire, and see transpire to acquire the best of our Father’s good pleasure.

“Set your heart:” I have found some synonyms to the Hebrew word translated “set” to be “to fix, plant, appoint, constitute, commit, fasten, give over.” In a constructive attitude the Lord would have us aspire to setting our affections on things which are higher. To me, this would be wholehearted determination and holy zeal. “Whatsoever you do, do it heartily as to the Lord and not unto men, knowing that of the Lord you shall receive a reward of the inheritance” – Col. 3:23-24. “Whatsoever thine hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in the grave” – Ecc. 9:10. We have only one life; it will soon be past, so let us redeem the time. While it is day, let us make the opportunities (to be constructive) count. O Lord, teach us to number our days! “Blessed are they that seek Thee with a whole heart…give me understanding…Yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart” Ps. 19:2,34.

“Seek the Lord:” From the Hebrew word translated “seek” we also find these synonyms; “implore, regard, follow.” It seems to carry the thought “to apply oneself, to tread or frequent a place.” It is also very important that we always enquire before God’s throne, and at the feet of Jesus for wisdom and enablement. Taking these from Him could save us a lot of wasted energy and effort. To be constructive we must completely trust His guidance and grace. Ask the Lord and look into His Word for it is full of constructive guide lines, especially in Paul’s Epistles.

“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s wealth” – I Cor. 10:23-24. When we seek the Lord, we are made to realize that the things that are non-constructive and unprofitable are not just out in the world, and only among unbelievers. But the religious form of this age is spiritually very destructive. “Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and the things wherewith one may edify another” – Rom. 14:19. Let us paraphrase; Let our aim be to keep on pursuing that which belongs to our mutual up-building.

“Arise therefore:” This word from the Hebrew seems to carry such thoughts as, to flourish, to excite, to apply to action. This word also speaks to me of one of the important aspects of overcoming. In order to be truly constructive, there must be spiritual cooperation, that is, rising above petty feelings. Love is not easily provoked, (not touchy, not quick to take offence, not irritable.) We are taught to walk in love. We who can foresee the Lord’s coming are urged to inspire one another unto love and good works. In view of our Lord’s return we are told to comfort ourselves together, and edify one another – I Thess. 5:11. O yes, there will be hindrances, difficulties, problems, objections and fierce opposition. Satan, who came to steal, kill, and destroy, seems to be very handy at making it easy for the flesh to be destructive. God has provided everything to make us, (that is, our lives), totally constructive. He place gifts in the Church, and the offices for building up the body of Christ, and not just for the uplifting of the gifts, and the gifted. Eph. 4:11-12.

“Build ye:” Our Father is willing to use every member, every part in its place to cause His great building plan to transpire. “But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which it the Head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectually working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love: – Eph. 4:15-16. This word translated “build” is very interesting, it is used to express making repairs, and to set up, but also to “cause to prosper, to advance or enlarge in knowledge, wealth, and honor.” This same word is also used of teachers, and applied to having offspring. Those who know and appreciate Paul’s epistles will enjoy such significance.

“Bring:” Them which sleep in Jesus will God (one day soon) bring with Him, When He gathers together in one all things in Christ. O, How He must anticipate with joy, the claiming and gathering home His precious purchased possessions. The SETTING, SEEKING, ARISING, and BUILDING  was for the purpose of BRINGING in the Ark and the Holy vessels. The Ark teaches us of the presence and provisions of God among His people. We, His trusting people, are the “vessels” in whom His glorious provisions are placed; His treasures are invested, and His Presence is to be realized. Them which sleep in Christ, and those who are alive and remain will God one day soon bring with Him.

Praise God, one day soon it will be universally announced; “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them and be their God” – Rev. 21:2.
J. D.