Saturday, May 09, 2009

Paradise Returned: Part 7

Conclusion (2 of 2)

* Please read the Introduction through Part 6 first.

Well this wraps it all up. I want to drive home the biblical defition of who is traveling this narrow way that leads to New Jerusalem, via several more Scriptures - one a new friend shared with me as I was discussing the circular timeline with them that was all the way back where we started in Part 1.

Malachi chapter 3 tells us about who can endure and stand when He appears. Although I’d encourage you to spend time throughout the entire chapter, I will only stick to the key verses here.

“But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner's fire and like launderer’s soap. He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the LORD offerings in righteousness.” (verses 2and 3)

Those who willingly submit themselves to being purified now, the “royal priesthood” (1 Peter 2:9), will be purified by the Refiner. “Then the offering of Judah (praise) and Jerusalem (peace) will be pleasing to the LORD…”

Skipping down to verses sixteen through eighteen, we see something quite astounding.

“Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, and the LORD gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the LORD and who esteem His name. ‘They will be Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘On the day that I prepare My own possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him.’ So you will again distinguish between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him.”

In order to tie this all together, now read Revelation 3:10-13.

“Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. I am coming quickly; hold fast what you have, so that no one will take your crown. He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he will not go out from it anymore; and I will write on him the name of My God, and the name of the city of My God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God, and My new name.”

Only those who have stood unwavering as a royal priesthood, refined by the fire and living in peace and praise, will be sealed with the name of God and of the Holy City, New Jerusalem.

Still not convinced that much of the words spoken to the “wide way” travelers are the religious ones who profess with their mouth yet have hearts that are from Him? Could it be those who “know of God” but are not “known by God”?

”For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them.” 2 Peter 2:20 and 21

”But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons.” 1 Timothy 4:1

“But when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, commits iniquity and does according to all the abominations that a wicked man does, will he live? All his righteous deeds which he has done will not be remembered for his treachery which he has committed and his sin which he has committed; for them he will die. Yet you say, 'The way of the Lord is not right.' ‘Hear now, O house of Israel! Is My way not right? Is it not your ways that are not right?’” Ezekiel 18:24 and 25

“There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” Proverbs 16:25

As we saw earlier, when Jesus was being asked who was “being saved”, He responded “Strive to enter through the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. ”

There are countless “converts” who made a “decision” that seemed “right” and have been falsely assured that it is enough. They say with their mouths that He is Lord when in fact, they have only known a form of godliness (2 Timothy 3). We have made Christianity so simple, there is nothing to it. We have dumbed-down the Gospel. Simple biblical truths are so buried beneath doctrines of men that the biblical truth actually sounds heretical. Is it not made as plain as possible in the Scripture that we must endure, mature and continually be conformed into the image of Christ? These are the ones who will enter New Jerusalem! I am always asking the LORD to unveil my eyes to see any error within me that would keep me from entering in. I daily desire to seek Truth and avoid anything that would deceive me and lead me astray. We must be aware of what path we are walking! Be assured of which path you are walking down via the Word and intimacy with the Father. There can be no other plumb line.

Are you in a personal relationship with Him? And I don’t mean that in the cliché way that it has become either. Let me put it like this, to go hand in hand with what I've shared here - do you dwell in the holy of holies with Him? Have you studied the Word to understand the depth and width of salvation? Do you understand what it truly means to be biblically born from above? My friend, the Word is full of example after example of the many who will say “Lord, Lord” yet He has no clue who they are. The world will continue to be the world, but the Church must address that She is lacking the “naked intimacy in the Garden” with Her Creator. She is settling to walk around the outer court, at best, rather than dwell in the holy place. She is following the masses down the busy interstate of predictability and conformity rather than take the narrow way. It is time to make an exit my friend! Raise a banner! Build up the highway! Dwell in the secret place! Dare to enter the small gate and embark on the narrow path! It is why you were created to begin with! Fulfill your destiny, know and be known by the LORD! It is the culmination of all things that was established before time was even set into motion! It is your purpose, your destiny, the reason for your very existence! All of time as we know it is coming to an end – a full circle and at the end of this highway is the New Jerusalem - the culmination of it all, the city fashioned by God’s very hand adorned for His beautiful Bride! Do you know for absolute certain, according to the Word of God alone, that you will be able to enter in?

There is only One Way to return to your origin in the Creator. Ther is only One Gate and One Guardian that you must know and be known by… He is Jesus, The Christ, The Anointed Messiah!


Nathan said...

Fantastic study Joel. I definetely feel like I was living ignorant to the bigger picture. I anticipate looking into the Bible for myself to figure some more of this out.

NINA said...

This was a great series. I really think that you should publish this and get it out there to the world. This should not be confined to just a blog. This is an awesome teaching tool. It could be a really good source of reference to new Christians even in the "churches". It could serve as an avenue to revamp the church and get "the Church" back to its rightful standing. Some of the greatest documents that changed history was written by just one man who was trying to make a change. Just something to think about? BE BLESSED

Joel Spencer said...

Nathan: There is always so much more! Feel free to fill us in on whatever else you might find - this is just the surface!

Nina: I often wonder how to "get this stuff out" but it seems few truly want to know of it. Last year I even contacted several magazines and my stuff is always deemed "too controversial". Isn't that what the Word of God is suppoosed to be?

Oh well. :)

Valerie said...

Joel, you said
"I often wonder how to "get this stuff out" but it seems few truly want to know of it. Last year I even contacted several magazines and my stuff is always deemed "too controversial". Isn't that what the Word of God is supposed to be?"

Don't be discouraged about not getting this stuff out. You keep putting it here and Father will lead those who need to read it here. Isn't this what the "rest of God" is about - we do as He asks us and rest in Him to bring it to completion. Great series, keep the Word coming brother - we need to hear it.
As for your stuff seeming "controversial" - what a way of knowing you are on exactly the right road - the Narrow Path!!

Harriet said...

AWESOME series Joel!
It ended perfectly...leaving Me, personally, breathless with anticipation..
wanting more and more understanding and deeper intimacy with Him!

Father, I ask You to move this series out to the ones who WILL hear it! Let it light a fire in their hearts to KNOW YOU and THE TRUTH MORE! amen

God bless you my friend!

Joel Spencer said...

Valerie: Although there was a day when I was disappointed that this stuff could not "get to the masses", I've pretty much become OK with just maintaining my blogs. As with anything that could change lives, you want to declare it out to as many as will hear.

I sure don't mind controversial. It changes me as I confront it too. :)

Harriet: I agree, may the LORD be the Orchestrator of it all.

I have another 7 or 8 part series ready to get posted. The LORD is speaking more than I can get down lately. Is always along the same lines - guess we need to hear it.

Valerie said...

Joel, I'm back at the beginning of the series again but posting here at the end!! Many years ago Father spoke to me about coming full circle - you have done a wonderful job here putting it all into words (or should I say the Spirit did). Praise the Lord for your obedience to Him.
You also cleared something else up for me. I have a friend who also calls Jesus The Christ and I couldn't understand why. Reading through this blog He has revealed this to me - He is the only Christ.