As we draw closer to God these “incidents” occur less and less but they still occur occasionally. An old Christian will explain, “As long as we are in this old flesh, we will continue to sin.”
Is there no hope as long as we are in the flesh?
I read an interesting paragraph in the book by George Warnock, The Christian's Hope: Growing Up Into Christ Jesus, The Feast of Tabernacles:
"And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in (unto) the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ" (Eph. 4:11-13). The Church may proclaim an imminent rapture as much as they will, and teach that any moment the saints will be snatched away from earth to escape the gathering clouds of Tribulation. But this is not the teaching of God's Word. True, we must always be waiting and watching for His Appearing--but this is not the "Appearing" of modern evangelical theology. This glorious Appearing must first of all be manifest in the saints.
George Warnock is on to something BIG! I will always be thankful to George Warnock for his writings because they have given me a more clear understanding of what God is preparing for His saints in these last days.
Isa 66:7 Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child.
Isa 66:8 Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children.
Isaiah the Prophet prophecies something very interesting and I believe enlightening for the Church. First, he speaks about the birth of a man child. This man child, most prophecy students agree, concerns the birth of Jesus Christ. However, Isaiah directly references something else, Zion also gives birth to a nation! Many people automatically say this prophecy is concerning the creation of the Nation of Israel on May 14, 1948. I believe this is only partially correct. I believe there is going to be another “Israel”, a spiritual Israel, that will also be born in one day.
Rom 9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
Rom 9:7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.
Rom 9:8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.
There is an Israel after the flesh and there is an Israel after the promise. There are so many examples in the Bible and the Apostle Paul gives Esau and Jacob as examples. However, let us list some other examples. First, comes the child after the flesh and then comes the child after the promise: Cain and Able; Ishmael and Isaac; Esau and Jacob; Reuben and Joseph.
There was an Israel of the flesh born on May 14, 1948, but there also must be an Israel born “after the promise”. Like Abraham and Sarah, Judaism and Christianity knew that God promised the birth of a NEW NATION; therefore, Judaism and Christianity got together and decided to help God out and they created the new nation of Israel on May 14, 1948. However, God has never needed or wanted anybody’s help.
Rev 12:1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
Rev 12:2 And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.
There is a child about to be birthed in the earth. We have always been told that this child is Jesus, and I agree; however, the “Church” is the body of Christ.
Rom 12:4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:
Rom 12:5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.
The body of Christ must reach maturity BEFORE Jesus comes back.
Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Eph 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Eph 5:27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
Is the church ready to be presented to Christ without blemish? I dare say she is NOT ready!
Today most “Christians” are in bondage to sin in one form or another. Christianity is just like Israel under bondage to Egypt. Christianity is just like Israel under bondage to Babylon.
Joh 8:31 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
Joh 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Joh 8:33 They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?
Joh 8:34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.
Joh 8:35 And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever.
Joh 8:36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.
Most Christians are just like these Jews. The Jews were under bondage to Egypt, then Babylon, then Persia, then Greece, then Rome, and they were ALWAYS under bondage to SIN! They were NEVER FREE except for short periods of time! The Church, like Israel, immediately fell into apostasy after the Apostles died off. Except for short “revivals” the Church has also been under bondage. However, in the near future there will be a group of Christians who WILL BE FREE! They will only recognize how much bondage they were under AFTER they are set free.
Psa 126:1 A Song of degrees. When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.
Psa 126:2 Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them.
Psa 126:3 The LORD hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.
Psa 126:4 Turn again our captivity, O LORD, as the streams in the south.
Psa 126:5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
Psa 126:6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
IF YOU CONTINUE IN MY WORD, THEN ARE YOU MY DISCIPLES INDEED; YE SHALL KNOW THE TRUTH, AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE!
If you CONTINUE in my Word!
There is a specific event that will signal the BEGINNING of the end times.
The event is NOT the rapture! The event is the MARRIAGE SUPPER OF THE LAMB!
I know you are confused, “Isn’t the marriage supper of the lamb and the rapture the same event or nearly the same event?”
That is what I was taught my whole church life. However, I have come to believe that many Bible teachers are wrong. I believe the Bible is full to overflowing with allegories and the many marriage stories in the Bible are ALL allegories of the biggest event in all of history, the marriage between Christ and His Church!
How can the marriage occur without ALL the saints?
Jesus plainly taught that ALL Christians will NOT participate in the MOST IMPORTANT EVENT IN HISTORY! Therefore, it CANNOT happen AFTER the rapture/resurrection!
Mat 25:1 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
Mat 25:2 And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
Mat 25:3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
Mat 25:4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
Mat 25:5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
Mat 25:6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
Mat 25:7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
Mat 25:8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
Mat 25:9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
Mat 25:10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
Mat 25:11 Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
Mat 25:12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
Mat 25:13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
Jesus says that ALL the virgins slumbered and slept. This is a key argument for the pre-tribulation rapture. It would be hard to imagine ALL Christians sleeping in the midst of, or after, the Great Tribulation. Read my Free Book, Christian Exodus Out of Babylon, and you can read why I believe in a post-tribulation rapture.
However, I believe the marriage of the Lamb takes place prior to the Great Tribulation AND prior to the rapture. The Apostle Paul speaks of a GREAT MYSTERY!
Eph 5:30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
Eph 5:31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
Eph 5:32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
I believe the TIMING of the several marriages described in the Bible are important.
The Book of Ruth describes the marriage between a gentile bride and a Jewish kinsman redeemer. What better allegory of the marriage of the Church and, our LORD and Savior, Jesus Christ?
Ruth leaves her country with her Jewish mother-in-law, Naomi, after a terrible drought and they both arrive in Israel with nothing but a tenuous claim on some land that once belonged to Naomi’s husband. They arrive in Israel during the BARLEY harvest, which is the FIRST harvest in Israel. If you want an interesting Bible study, look up the word BARLEY and where it is used in several books of the Old Testament. Israel has three (3) major harvests, (Barley, Wheat, and Fall harvest), which coincide with the three (3) major Jewish feasts, (Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles).
Rth 1:22 So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter in law, with her, which returned out of the country of Moab: and they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley harvest.
The Book of Ruth is filled with interesting information, but to make a short story even shorter, another of Naomi’s relatives wants to redeem the land but does not want to marry Ruth. However, Boaz agrees to redeem the land AND marry Ruth because he has fallen in love with Ruth while she is gleaning in his fields during the BARLEY harvest, THE FIRST HARVEST IN ISRAEL!
Esther is another interesting character and allegory in the Bible. Esther is a beautiful Jewish girl, who is chosen to be the wife of the King of Persia BEFORE a terrible plan to destroy ALL the Jews in Persia is carried out by Haman, a type of Antichrist. Again to make a short story shorter, Esther’s uncle Mordechai, learns about Haman’s plan to destroy all the Jews in Persia and asks her to intercede with the King on behalf of the Jewish people.
Est 4:13 Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house, more than all the Jews.
Est 4:14 For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?
Esther uses her special access to the King of Persia, because she is the King’s WIFE, to intercede on behalf of herself and her people BEFORE Haman can carry out his plan to destroy all the Jews in Persia. Haman, his family and all his followers are killed instead of the Jewish people. The Jewish holiday of Purim still celebrates this event.
I believe there is going to be another marriage between the King of Kings and a special group of believers, who will have special access to intercede for the world PRIOR to the Great Tribulation. The whole point of Christianity is restoring intimacy with God…FELLOWSHIP, COMMUNION!
Rev 14:4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.
Rev 14:5 And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
ARE YOU A WISE OR FOOLISH VIRGIN?