Posts Tagged ‘spokespersons’

Jerusalem Visit by Paul the Apostle
A depiction of James, the brother of Jesus, and the Elders in Jerusalem meeting with the Apostles Paul and Peter

 

Today, reply is made on James, Paul, Peter and Matthias; authority; and succession within the early church.  The criteria for being acknowledged as an apostle was more than simply having been in association with Jesus from the beginning of his ministry to his dying on the cross.  The apostles all were chosen and installed to testify and witness to the resurrection of Jesus, to authentic the falling of the Holy Ghost, and to certify the genuine manifestation of sacred gifts.  Jesus did not bestow on his disciples dominance and power to demand the obedience of others so much as he provided a fresh endowment of spirit substance from the makeup of divinity along with the consciousness and willpower to serve others while practicing self-government.  The leadership within the body would be acknowledged and recognized on the basis of such features as their humility, industry, meekness, and unselfishness.  One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile data shared) posted the following:

 

Did the Early Church operate under valid central authority?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed:  and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.  Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.  And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord.  And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.  But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.  For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;  To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;  To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:  But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.  For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body:  so also is Christ.  For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  (1st Corinthians 12:  3-13, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Flesh As Divine Vessels? (01/14/2018); Meanings for “Apostolic Church” (05/08/2017); A True Apostle? (09/20/2015); How Many Apostles? (04/30/2014); The Ruler Of the Earth? (05/01/2014); Succession (02/05/2014); On Youth Doing Enough (02/06/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, the Holy Spirit (we also say, the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth) was present as the spokesperson for Jesus Christ in the early church.  Responses that rely on secular knowledge will present the church as an ordinary institution, and a formally structured social organization.  Reponses that rely on sacred knowledge shared among Christian believers will describe the church as a body, or a fellowship having many distinct members with Jesus Christ as its head.  In that view, the church is most correctly portrayed as active, alive, diverse, developing, organic, and personal.

When the continued existence of the church became threatened by persecution, the believers that came to number in thousands were scattered; however, they also began to evangelize, go out, and spread the gospel in ways that otherwise would not have occurred.  It was then that James, the brother of Jesus, and others who remained in Jerusalem began to be recognized as a legitimate body to give counsel on issues of doctrine and practice, to address the challenges of embracing both Gentiles and Jews, and to resolve recurring conflicts.

While the Book of Acts reports that Peter preached a sermon on the day of Pentecost after the Holy Spirit had fallen upon the 120 men and women in the upper Room, who had fasted and prayed together awaiting the promise, Peter was not acknowledged at that time as the “successor” to Jesus, or as the chief spokesperson.  The early work among these believers included nominating candidates to fill both the office of apostle, and of bishop (elder) that had been vacated by Judas Iscariot.

A device used among the Hebrews from ancient times was employed to select the new apostle from the two proposed candidates.  The casting of lots was used with the understanding that the will of GOD would be indicated by its outcome.  This technique was akin to that used for judgment by the High Priest in the tabernacle and in the temple that involved his consecrated garments and full regalia, the breastplate, ephod, urim and thummim (also called, Lights and Perfections).  At Pentecost, the early church received multiple gifts to nourish and expand the community of faith that would establish the will of GOD in a similar way:  the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, faith, prophecy, the working of miracles, and discerning of spirits (there were no gifts of reading minds, or predicting the future).  Consider the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Numbers 27:  20-23, King James Version (KJV):  20 And thou shalt put some of thine honour upon him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may be obedient.  21 And he shall stand before Eleazar the priest, who shall ask counsel for him after the judgment of Urim before the LORD:  at his word shall they go out, and at his word they shall come in, both he, and all the children of Israel with him, even all the congregation.  22 And Moses did as the LORD commanded him:  and he took Joshua, and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation:  23 And he laid his hands upon him, and gave him a charge, as the LORD commanded by the hand of Moses.

(2.)  Acts 1:  13-16, KJV:  13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.  14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.  15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)  16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.

(3.)  Acts 1:  22-26, KJV:  22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.  23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.  24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,  25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.  26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Acts 15:  12-20, KJV:  12 Then all the multitude kept silence, and gave audience to Barnabas and Paul, declaring what miracles and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles by them.  13 And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men and brethren, hearken unto me:  14 Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.  15 And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written,  16 After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up:  17 That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things.  18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.  19 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God:  20 But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Scroll of Law, Matthew

 

.Today, points are shared on the multiple works to provide fulfillment of sacred law and eternal purpose that were performed by divinity appearing Incarnate as Jesus Christ.  Divine law is itself an embodiment of the heart, mind, spirit substance, and will of GOD.  The full body of law for Israel as a human tool to resolve conflicts, govern diverse groups, families or tribes, and to settle disputes over property was limited (we say, cursed) by bias, bribery, human error, and injustice; and bad rulers also decreed bad laws.  The law could expose and identify the operations of sin, yet, could not eliminate sin, or reverse its effects.  Thus, the Scripture records also include laws that endorse abuse of marriage with forms of prostitution and slavery.  There are benefits and pleasures that result through sin, however, they are not lasting, and do not remove or satisfy ones obligations to GOD.  Jesus appeared to reveal the consecrated personhood expressed in the law as well as to apply the law through rebirth and reconciliation as a framework for transforming sinners to exist as his new creation.  The comprehensiveness of what he has accomplished includes that he served as sacrifice for atonement, a divinely appointed judge, the one accused, and as a firstborn, kinsman-redeemer who restores and secures inheritance.  A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum using the ID “Georgie” (Level 5 with 5,361 points, a member since July 02, 2015) posted the following:

 

What does it mean that “Jesus came to fulfill the law”?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together.  Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,  Master, which is the great commandment in the law?  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.  This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.  (Matthew 22:  34-40, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Sin No “One-time” Event (01/03/2018); Law of the Spirit (12/27/2017); Christ Is The Firstborn (12/26/2017); The Commandments of Jesus (12/17/2017); Waiting On The Lord? (06/16/2017); Christ Brought A New Nature? (07/15/2015); Fulfilling Divine Law? (07/14/2015)

 

“Georgie”, here are a few points I may share:

Multiple streams of sacred truth come together as Christians speak of the works by divinity to fulfill the terms of covenant relationship, sacred law, divine proclamation, promise, and prophecy.  In addition to “bringing about and making things happen,” “completing what was started earlier,” and “demonstrating dutifulness, faithfulness, and obedience required by the law” the Savior’s work of fulfillment is to be recognized in Christ “assuming accountability,” “displaying spirit content from the makeup of GOD,” “dying on the cross as an embodiment of sin” as well as making possible the imparting of spiritual gifts to mankind.

Correctly understood, the law is a complete living process among the people of GOD, therefore, included are more than simply commandments and rules.  There also are admonitions, cautions, and warnings; imperatives and instruction through prophecy; the outcomes of judgment and tribunal; and imparted spirit substance (we say, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth) from the makeup of divine fullness (we say, the Godhead; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit).  With this in view, we discover somewhat why the holy writings were called “the law and the prophets,” for the prophets were spokespersons who continued communication, exchange and interaction both on behalf of GOD, and on behalf of mankind. 

The work of Jesus was not to cancel or deny the law from GOD that was provided to Israel.  His work was to serve, like the ram caught in the thicket, as an offering for sin, and thereby, to meet and satisfy the demands (we say, sanctions) of the law that declare both the outcomes for obedience and for disobedience (from Mount Ebal and Gerizim, we say, the spiritual blessings and curses of the law).  Jesus would use new language and introduce new points of emphasis regarding the eternal purposes of GOD accomplished through the law.  Thus, performing the “whole law” was shown to mean displaying the personhood of GOD, his righteousness, and other inseparable aspects of divine spirit within the law—that is, divine grace—not merely behaving according to “the letter” of the law.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Romans 8:  5-9, KJV:  5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.  6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.  7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God:  for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

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Washington, DC

el Shaddai

 

Today, focus is on the use by Jesus Christ of names and titles from prophecy when speaking of himself.  A writer in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum using the ID “Michael” (Level 5 with 8,331 points, a member since July 08, 2014) posted the following:

 

Where does Jesus in the Bible calls himself God Almighty?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and said unto him, Art thou the King of the Jews?  Jesus answered him, Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me?  Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have delivered thee unto me:  what hast thou done?  Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world:  if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews:  but now is my kingdom not from hence.  Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.  Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all.  (John 18:  33-38, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Jesus Demonstrated Perfected Humanity (10/29/2017); Names For Sacred Persons? (08/01/2017); The New Testament Name (05/01/2017); Also Called “The Amen” (01/29/2017); The Title of “Savior” (01/27/2017); The Lion of Judah (01/22/2017); Blasphemy and The Cross? (03/10/2016); Jesus Known As Word (01/17/2016); The Lamb of GOD (08/19/2015); Use Holy Names Not Titles? (08/17/2015)
 

“Michael”, believers today often encounter confusion by the way Jesus is spoken of over the thousands of years of prophecy and the way he presented and spoke of himself.  The title, “GOD Almighty” (El Shaddai) that appears in the Old Testament, was apparently used by divinity during the thousands of years Adam and the Patriarchs descended from him were alive on the earth.  Where GOD enters into a new aspect of ongoing relationship with mankind through Abram, who is called the Friend of GOD, the Patriarch’s personal name is changed to Abraham, and the name of GOD to be used by men is changed to Jehovah.  Other holy names and titles appear in the Scriptures that reflect the changes and operations of human history that may be “missed” and overlooked (e.g., the arm of the Lord; the zeal of the Lord); and some of the most powerful holy names attributed to Jesus Christ include “the mighty GOD, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.”

The Prophet Moses proclaimed that the tribes of Jacob and the mixed multitude of Gentiles that left Egypt together would become a nation to whom GOD would send a divine  Prophet and spokesperson (King, Messiah).  The title, “Christ”, has been used by believers in prophecy to say, “the anointed one,” the One Sent, and the one divinely anointed as Judge, King, High Priest, Prophet, and Messiah.  Many acknowledge Jesus Christ to be an appearance of divine fullness using flesh and human form (we say, Incarnation).  Jesus does label and title himself “the son of Man” (i.e., the son of Adam who is recorded as the first offspring and son of GOD).  Also, many respected Jesus using the title “Son of David,” and even were willing to violently overthrow the government of King Herod and Rome in order to crown Jesus as David’s heir and rightful King over Israel.  David was the son of Jesse named by many of the prophets, who himself reigned as king, and, like his son Solomon, also served as a divinely anointed judge, priest, and prophet.

One of the many curios aspects of Christian belief is that Jesus Christ was humble, meek, and avoided self-promotion, yet, went about accomplishing many of the most important deeds and works possible whereby a person could be recognized as sent from GOD, and genuinely divine in their own makeup and substance.  The process of the Gospel was to be one of discovery, insight, public proclamation, and sharing by word-of-mouth.  In addition to providing doctrine, prophecy and sacred lessons from GOD the Father, Jesus showed himself to be the Son of the Highest by healing the sick, feeding thousands, casting out devils, and restoring life to the dead.  Not only did Jesus himself avoid boasting, bragging, and “vainglory”, he often required that others be discrete and not speak of his works on their behalf (until after his ministry would be concluded).  When Jesus was directly confronted by the High Priest Caiaphas whether Jesus was the Christ, the Savior answered by prophesying.  Consider again, then, the prophesies of Isaiah that spoke of Jesus using the name Immanuel (God With Us) and other points using language from the Bible: 

(1.)  Isaiah 11:  1-5, King James Version (KJV):  1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:  2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;  3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD:  and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:  4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth:  and he shall smite the earth:  with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.  5 And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.

(2.)  Isaiah 11:  9-10, KJV:  9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain:  for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.  10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek:  and his rest shall be glorious.

(3.)  Isaiah 9:  6-7, KJV:  6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given:  and the government shall be upon his shoulder:  and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.  7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Matthew 26:  62-66, KJV:  62 And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee?  63 But Jesus held his peace, And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.  64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said:  nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.  65 Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy.  66 What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

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sanctuary
The camp of Israel depicting holy convocation, divine order, and the gathering of saints in the Apocalypse

 

Today, focus is on the church as a place set apart (we say, sanctified) for receiving and exchanging sacred knowledge and truth from Jesus Christ, and for being nourished by spirit substance from the makeup of GOD.  Free speech as practiced in the public forum has no place in the church.  The commitment to participate regularly within a church community is a commitment to seek and endure full growth through multiple levels of ones spirit personhood.  The church is specially cleansed and prepared as a consecrated house wherein divinity may appear (become manifest) and communicate with those who are willing sons, daughters, servants, and stewards of GOD.  Believers trust that GOD will appear in their midst through prayer, praise, the imparted Spirit, the holy writings, and various sacred practices.  Developing believers who practice discernment will be apprehended by the Lord, and used as instruments to acknowledge his exalted sovereignty, and execute his will for mankind.  Because GOD will always be a deity who performs judgment, members of the body, should never assemble in ignorance as they might for carnal, casual, political, and social events.  Every gathering to appear before GOD should be understood as an occasion for awe, humility, and judgment against sin.  A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum using the ID “James” (Level 3 with 1,299 points, a member since March 20, 2015) posted the following:

Christians- What about a church service where anyone can say what they want?

Church is too structured for me. The sermon isn’t always relevant to my daily life. The clergy could still facilitate the day. With free speech there is always the potential for hearing things you don’t like, but in your church you control power to the microphone, and indeed who gets on stage. but if the idea of even hearing a view point different from yours is too scary, I sincerely understand. Humans automatically fear the unknown. When you think you know personally, the creator of all things, it makes one feel very safe.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest,  And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more:  (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart:  And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:)  But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,  To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,  And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.  See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:  Whose voice then shook the earth:  but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.  And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.  (Hebrews 12:  18-27, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  As An Anointed Body (10/04/2017); What Young People Need? (06/26/2017); Fellowship With the Father (06/13/2017); …Gathered In My Name (05/29/2017); …Because GOD Loves You (03/05/2017); Become Like Jesus Christ? (10/27/2016); Good Christians and Church? (10/19/2016); Can A Church Not Be “Religious”? (07/27/2016); On Wearing Sports Jerseys? (11/20/2015); Relationship With Our Creator? (03/16/2015)

 

“James”, in the same way Jesus cast out a demon while in the synagogue, everyone who appears in church is not fully submitted to GOD.  Christian church assemblies and congregations make public presentations and welcome new members from the larger community, however, they must exist as private membership groups that maintain a shared lifestyle, a concentrated knowledge base, and specific practices (we say, sacraments).  In general, as a household of faith containing believers in covenant agreement, churches do not encourage or permit academic studies that focus on secular knowledge; rely on argument, debate, and forensics; allow challenging the integrity of the founder and members; or indulge conjecture and philosophical speculation.  Members maintain the church building, other property, and various ongoing and special programs by collecting donations, pledges, promissory notes, and sacrificial offerings by the enrolled members that may include tithe offerings as well as bestowing ones estate at their decease.

The process of the church has to be one of proclaiming the Word from GOD.  While GOD is an invisible, yet, active presence, he makes himself knowable, known, accessible and approachable by using anointed and ordained spokespersons (e.g., apostles, clergy, judges and those who administer divine law, kings, parents, prophets).   Authentic messages, prophetic demonstrations, and revelation will conform to the same standard established to confirm the validity of the holy writings.  Thus, the elders and leaders of the body should be seen as examples of the balance, discipline, restraint, and zeal that appeared in the early church, for both the GOD believers are responding to, and his eternal purposes are immutable and unchanging.

The transformation of sinners to become companions of divinity through the church is not a one-time event, such as praying the sinner’s prayer.  Permanent changes must occur that are gradually completed by operations of the Holy Spirit.  Thus, water baptism depicts the death, burial and resurrection of ones inborn spirit, and their rebirth as vessels of divine seed.  Those who are “born again” are divine offspring and the children of GOD, yet, they are not ripe for harvest (mature), and must “grow up again” by living on the earth, enduring life challenges, and even suffering.  Consider once again the following points that use language from the Bible:

(1.)  1st Corinthians 12:  27-29, King James Version (KJV):  27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.  28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.  29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?

(2.)  Ephesians 4:  11-16, KJV:  11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  13 Till we all come in 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 fulness of Christ:  14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;  15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:  16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

(3.)  1st Timothy 3:  1-9, KJV:  1 This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.  2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;  3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;  4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;  5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)  6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.  7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.  8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;  9 Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.  10 And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless.  11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.  12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.  13 For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.

(4.)  1st Corinthians 14:  1-5, KJV:  1 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy.  2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God:  for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.  3 But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.  4 He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church.  5 I would that ye all spake with tongues but rather that ye prophesied:  for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying.

(5.)  1st Corinthians 14:  36-40, KJV:  36 What? came the word of God out from you? or came it unto you only?  37 If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.  38 But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.  39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.  40 Let all things be done decently and in order.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (6.)  Romans 8:  5-9, KJV:  5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.  6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.  7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God:  for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

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Formed to be Inhabited

 

Today, points are shared that speak to the divine purposes for the existence of mankind.  Several prophets and spokespersons sent from GOD have cried, What is man?  Their intent was neither to condemn divinity, nor to curse mankind.  Rather, they were calling for relief from GOD while expressing desperation and frustration that life appears too short, is overly difficult, has too few moments of genuine joy, and can be utterly unsatisfying.  A writer at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Esmeralda” (Level 1 with 143 points, a member since October 26, 2016) posted the following:

 

What is the reason for our existence?

do you think that we were created to just live, do whatever we want then die? or that there is actually a purpose for all our lives.

Update: Guys, I know the reason for my existence, I’m asking about YOUR opinion.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  When I say, My bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaints;  Then thou scarest me with dreams, and terrifiest me through visions:  So that my soul chooseth strangling, and death rather than my life.  I loathe it; I would not live alway:  let me alone; for my days are vanity.  What is man, that thou shouldest magnify him? and that thou shouldest set thine heart upon him?  And that thou shouldest visit him every morning, and try him every moment?  How long wilt thou not depart from me, nor let me alone till I swallow down my spittle?  I have sinned; what shall I do unto thee, O thou preserver of men? why hast thou set me as a mark against thee, so that I am a burden to myself?  And why dost thou not pardon my transgression, and take away my iniquity? for now shall I sleep in the dust; and thou shalt seek me in the morning, but I shall not be.  (Job 7:  13-21, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Creator is Different (10/31/2017); From Dust Thou Art (09/07/2017); “Occupy Till I Come” (08/30/2017); The Quality of Life? (03/29/2017); Reflections on Existence (12/19/2016); Eternal Life From GOD (10/24/2016); Life Is In Blood (12/08/2015); All Is Vanity? (07/28/2015)

 

“Esmeralda”, here, are some points to consider that might help many avoid spiritual confusion:

(1.)  As mature thinkers, we usually attribute “motives”, “purpose”, and “reason” to living individuals who display intellect and mind.  When you ask, What is the reason, we tend to respond, The “reason” given by whom?  Whose reason?  And, Are you asking us to tell you GOD’s reason?  Are you really ready to accept what someone else will tell you that they have received from GOD?

(2.)  As a matter of human expression, there might be countless responses that describe specific aims, goals and objectives of the living, yet, do not answer such features as a desire “to exist” or “the will to live” (that we often deal with as though it means the same as “intent”) among the living. 

(3.)  Everything that exists does not have life; thus, a cadaver or corpse may exist.  A “living soul” requires life essence (i.e., breath, spirit, Word) imparted from the makeup of GOD as well as a material form such as the human body. 

(4.)  Resurrection of the body as a Christian belief, acknowledges that ones spirit continues on some plane of existence such as limbo or purgatory—that is not a sphere of life such as earth, heaven, the universe—even though the material body has been destroyed.

(5.)  For mature Christians, created beings and living creatures exist as emanations and expressions of divine order, eternal purpose, and sovereign will.  Where the living have received fresh endowments of the inseparable aspects of spirit imparted from GOD, they will “appear”, display sacred image, and serve as divine offspring (we say, joint heirs with Christ, the children of GOD).

(6.)  Completeness, existence, life, person, and presence as important aspects of divine fullness.  Where we understand our own desire to call out and hear an echo, many of us also understand why GOD would prepare mankind to be an immortal, incorruptible companion.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (7.)  Romans 8:  5-9, KJV:  5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.  6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.  7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God:  for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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James Jacque Joseph Tissot –  Moses and Joshua in the Tabernacle
(a scene that probably never occurred, neither being High Priests, and both within the veil at the same time)

 

Today, focus is on the manifestations of prophetic ministry presented by Moses, Joshua, and Jesus Christ.  In the same way the holy writings report changes in sacred institutions and divine law, offices and serving as agents and spokespersons for divinity (e.g., seer, prophet, apostle, evangelist) are seen continued, yet, becoming a new form.  The anointing granted to Joshua and Moses fitted them to fulfill promises and prophecies to mankind that addressed the establishment of a sacred nation upon the earth.  Their endowments included angelic visitations; authority as judges, rulers, and worship leaders; covenant relationship; knowledge to command military operations as well as access to receive divine proclamations of sacred law, and guidance to partition and distribute allotments of territory.  Even so, neither may have correctly understood that their works were for transforming mankind to exist as companions to immortal, incorruptible divinity.  As an incarnate person of the GODhead, the anointing upon Jesus Christ was greater, for the Son of the Highest would be endowed to serve as Judge, King, High Priest in the heavens, and Prophet as well as the architect and builder of the heavenly City (the New Jerusalem).  A writer at “Yahoo! 7 Answers (Australia)” using the ID “Roche” (Level 1 with 77 points, a member since August 16, 2017) posted the following:

 

What do you think that Moses would say to Joshua if he could see us now?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron?  For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.  For he of whom these things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance at the altar.  For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood.  And it is yet far more evident:  for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest,  Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.  For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.  For there is verily a disannulling of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof.  For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.  And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest:  (For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:)  By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.  (Hebrews 7:  11-22, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Christ Our High Priest (10/25/2017); The Generation That Wandered (06/14/2017); Rulers Who Are Prophets? (01/25/2017); Material Things in Heaven? (11/10/2016); Face to Face Like Moses? (01/28/2014); Covenants and Relationships (01/29/2014); Jericho Justified? (07/02/2013); Theoretical Forgiveness? (07/03/2013)

 

“Roche”, despite the existence of national Israel, the present condition for the ancient covenant people is very much one of Diaspora, disbelief, scattering, and spiritual confusion.  Both Moses and Joshua were used by GOD as expressions of divine wrath against sin, and as instruments in punitive judgment (e.g., the plagues of Egypt; destruction of those in the camp who had worshiped the golden calf fashioned by Aaron; the five kings who had hidden in the cave at Makkedah; the utter destruction of Jericho).  Even so, they were being embraced by a God of deliverance, and, like developing believers today, were caught up in the many emotional and psychological conflicts between seeking to garner and apply sound (secular) information (for example, by sending out the spies) and operating strictly on the basis of revelation, divine promise, prophecy, and sacred knowledge.  Keep in mind, both these men had suffered extended periods in a place where most of the inborn citizens excluding the Hebrews were the private property of one man (i.e., slaves to Pharaoh of Egypt).

Both Joshua and Moses were anointed to serve as prophets; however, only Joshua is spoken of as a general over the armies of Israel.  The two men both acknowledged the active presence who is GOD as having appeared through emblems that included the burning bush, the tables of stone, the Shekhinah within the Tabernacle, the Ark of the Covenant, and visitation by the Captain of the Host of Heaven.  While Moses was so filled with the Spirit of GOD (we say, breath, life essence, Word) that a portion of his anointing could be granted to seventy of the elders of Israel, and he remained more empowered than all of them put together, neither he nor Joshua were consecrated to the level of Jesus Christ.  Because they did not receive the fresh endowment of imparted Spirit established by Christ dying upon the cross, neither of them could completely and correctly grasp the subtle (i.e., barely visible; having hidden shifts in meaning, quality, and value), yet powerful upsurge in the operations of GOD that have been revealed to us.  Foremost are the movements from deliverance to salvation, from condemnation to forgiveness, and from fulfilling the sanctions of the law to outpouring mercy and reconciliation.

Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Deuteronomy 14:  1-2, King James Version (KJV):  1 Ye are the children of the LORD your God:  ye shall not cut yourselves, nor make any baldness between your eyes for the dead.  2 For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God, and the LORD hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations that are upon the earth.

(2.)  Hosea 6:  5-7, KJV:  5 Therefore have I hewed them by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of my mouth:  and thy judgments are as the light that goeth forth.  6 For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.  7 But they like men have transgressed the covenant:  there have they dealt treacherously against me.

(3.)  John 1:  11-17, KJV:  11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.  12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:  13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.  14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.  15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me:  for he was before me.  16 And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.  17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

(4.)  Romans 5:  8-10, KJV:  8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.  9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.  10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  Hebrews 3: 1-6, KJV:  1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;  2 Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.  3 For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.  4 For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.  5 And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;  6 But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Today, thoughts are shared on benefits from attending prayer meetings at the church where one is a member.  Prayer in public and by elected officials are increasingly becoming thought of as a duty among believers in America and many of the other nations now suffering unprecedented  bereavement and loss through floods, storms, terrorism, and other tragic events.  However, it remains that a church congregation should be a source for, and a vessel filled with, spirit substance from GOD, rather than an organization serving as a community center, a site for distributing alms and donations, or simply another location for secular social gatherings.  The church properly seeks and helps others to find the highest levels for their existence, and the specific endowments from GOD appropriate for salvation.  With this in view, through activity in the church, developing believers are released from worldly entanglements that interrupt the sacred business of interacting with divinity through commitment, humility, obedience, and prayer.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Grey Tower” (Level 7 with 171,743 points, a member since July 13, 2007) posted the following:

 

Should Christians participate in church Prayer Meetings? Is this biblical and beneficial?

Update: A prayer meeting is a regular church event, usually held one evening during the week. Everybody can join in with praying for current events / situations / church matters / others in need or who are sick, etc. Nobody is required to pray out loud and many never do, but pray silently. It’s a “corporate prayer” session, if you like.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities:  for we know not what we should pray for as we ought:  but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.  And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.  And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.  For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.  Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called:  and whom he called, them he also justified:  and whom he justified, them he also glorified.  (Romans 8:  26-30, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Storms to Punish America? (09/08/2017); …Gathered In My Name (05/29/2017); Receiving The Holy Spirit (12/08/2016); On Expecting Quick Results (11/07/2016); Good Christians and Church? (10/19/2016); Why Pray For Victims? (06/14/2016); Skipping Church A Sin? (11/17/2015)

 

“Grey Tower”, here are some thoughts you may find useful:  Because prayer meetings are assemblies of anointed believers, they should be regarded as sacred events that further reveal and make visible the active presence who is GOD.  In the meetings referred to here, focus is on completing the edification and existence of the church, rather than on the personal concerns and needs of individuals as within the home or family prayer circle.  Carnal, material, political, and social issues are less relevant.  Prayer meetings to benefit and complete the sacred business of the church call for outpourings of grace and the Holy Spirit.  The objective and purpose for everyone who is present is to acknowledge, affirm and evidence the oneness without sameness provided through Jesus as head of the Church as well as to marshal and focus the spirit content and power of the full body of Christ for the completion of various sacred operations (e.g., confession and petition; forbearance and forgiveness; baptism and rebirth; ordination and sanctification).  Sacred transactions are to be completed that were began on the basis of covenant, divine law, sovereign proclamations, eternal purpose, trustworthy promises, and expectations grounded in prophecy.

In praise and prayer services, a congregation is to commune and interact with GOD as though the group is a single person.  As they display their own spirit content imparted from GOD (e.g., faith, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, wisdom, wrath against sin) through prophecy, testimony and witness, they present the image of GOD, and become “recognizable” to divinity as those having place with Jesus Christ in sacred fullness.  The clergy and assembled believers all may serve as spokespersons for GOD and for mankind.  In addition to being a process of exchange between Creator and the created, prayer meetings are a sacred tool for imparting divine order, restoring balance, crystallizing vision, and refreshing body, mind and spirit.  Prayer allows the collective to prepare for action as well as to be invigorated and revived when going up against opposition, unmet needs, obstacles, and spiritual confusion.  Consider again the following counsel that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Matthew 18:  19-20, King James Version (KJV):  19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.  20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

(2.)  Ephesians 4:  11-16, KJV:  11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  13 Till we all come in 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 fulness of Christ:  14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;  15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:  16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

(3.)  Acts 4:  31-33, KJV:  31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.  32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul:  neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.  33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus:  and great grace was upon them all.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Hebrews 10:  24-29, KJV:  24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:  25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.  26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,  27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.  28 He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:  29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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