Thursday, 10 November 2011

LUKE (Chapter 24)-The glory of the risen Christ (active) in the new man

Part III

The life in the holy of holies of the marriage child of God.

We have come to the last chapter of the Gospel after Luke, and this chapter, according to the characteristics of the Tabernacle, we must view in the light of His Shekinah glory. It was the light of His divine glory (and the proof of His perfect presence), that at the time was present between the two cherubim on the mercy seat of the Ark of the Covenant. This light depicts the light of the love of God that, by Jesus' atonement, will work in the complete person – after body, soul and spirit – unto the full revelation of His justice in the sanctified person, and to the glory of His sweet and unsurpassed Name! Let us fervently desire the effect of this perfect light of God in our heart and life (Matthew 5:6), until we will be perfect in Him, as it is written: "...every one (disciple) that is perfect shall be as his master" (Luke 6:40b).
Should there be among you who think that fullness in Christ here on earth cannot exist, then you detract from the Word of God (Colossians 4:12; Matthew 5:48; John 17:23; 2 Corinthians 13:11), which tells us that He will build a church without any "spot or wrinkle" (Ephesians 5:27). Never in the history of the church this was realized, how wonderful members of the Church, especially in the beginning, might have been (see a.o. the book of Acts). But in the end-time, which we have already entered into now, the (perfect) Bride of Christ (namely the New Jerusalem) will be formed! By the powerful effects of the Word and the Spirit of God this Bride(church) will be led into the fullness of and in God. She will be brought to this (divine) perfection in order to be able to experience the divine miracle of the Marriage of the Lamb; namely the actual union of Jesus – the living Bridegroom, the Lamb of God – with His Bride living on earth, namely the then perfected Church (members) which is (are) called hereto (Revelation 19:6-10). And all that will take place on earth (Luke 12:36)!
But the Marriage of the Lamb is an event which is hidden from the world. Therefore the divine Bridegroom will not (be able to) be seen by the worldly person, but they will know who the Bride (namely the woman married to the Son of God) is, and this is because of the Shekinah glory of God, which will seen in and through her being and actions (Revelation 12:1; Psalm 45:14-16; Isaiah 60:2). And this glorious Bride(church), although in secret on account of the persecutions by the then present political world-church of the end-time (Revelation 17:1-9), the Latter-Rain-Revival (i.e. the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the end-time – see Joel 2:23-32; a revelation of Him as the revealing light of God), which will then go over all the world; will lead in the omnipotence of her heavenly Bridegroom; as is also written in Obadiah 21: "And saviors shall come up on mount Zion to judge (and to recover) the mount of Esau (= type for the carnal Christian); and the kingdom shall be the Lord's."
In this Bride(church) the Word of God, which we can find in Ephesians 3:18-19, will have been realized: "(that ye) may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God." Then all the weak and imperfect, all that is man's own, will have been destroyed (brought to nought) by the victory of His resurrection power in our heart and life. Then God will (be able to) work in and through us, and we will be able to completely serve Him with a all-encompassing love and subjection! Then the wonderful waves of God's love and power will go through us to lead carnal man – who, in the end-time, will have been brought to the extreme form of unrighteousness by satan (Ezekiel 22:25, 29) – to faith and true repentance unto God, as a divine triumph; God's last triumph of the end-time!
God calls you and me now to go into His promise of this end-time; for He wants us to be part of His Bride(church) and the Marriage of the Lamb! Let us open our hearts for this and continue to walk in the "circumspection of the righteous" (Luke 1:17), so that God can work His way in our heart and life, and He will be able to fulfill His almighty works of grace in us unto the honor and glory of His divine Name! "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us (namely the way of the cross unto the killing of the "old me"), Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God" (Hebrews 12:1-2).
Spiritually seen, in this end-time we will enter an impressive time, even if it will entail a complete process of the cross (i.e. a complete dying to our old ego) as far as our "flesh" and our body is concerned; whereby we will experience increasing oppression and resistance. God's Church will have to be detached from all earthly-minded life; and it will have to grow unto the perfection of the heavenly-minded life (Haggai 2:7-10).
Let us look at this last chapter of the Luke Gospel in the light of what was written up before. It is good to put the following, for the sake of order: Now that – by the death of our Lord Jesus Christ – the sin offering for the sin of man was made, in heaven, thus with God, an ETERNAL redemption of sin and death is fulfilled (Hebrews 9:11-12). Now this victory over sin by Jesus Christ, our High Priest, must, here on earth, still be assigned to all, who have repented unto Him, have confessed their sins, and who have given themselves over to Him in faith (Hebrews 9:14-15). After all He alone, with the help of His anointed as His spiritual instruments, will build His Church by the Holy Spirit (Matthew 16:8; Psalm 127:1-2; 1 Corinthians 3:9-15).

CLICK HERE if you want to read this study (Chapter 24) – that is to long for the Blog.

By E. van den Worm

Monday, 10 October 2011

LUKE (Chapter 23) - The seven blood steps of Jesus Christ, which let to the fulfillment of His sacrifice on the cross of Calvary.


Part III
The life in ‘the holy of holies’ of the marriage child of God

1st blood step:

Jesus before Pilate, as His (earthly) judge.

23 verse 1-7:            "And the whole multitude of them arose, and led him unto Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying, We found this fellow perverting the nation, and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, saying that he himself is Christ a King. And Pilate asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answered him and said, Thou sayest it. Then said Pilate to the chief priests and to the people, I find no fault in this man. And they were the more fierce, saying, He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Jewry, beginning from Galilee to this place. When Pilate heard of Galilee, he asked whether the man were a Galilaean. And as soon as he knew that he belonged unto Herod's jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who himself also was at Jerusalem at that time."
The accusing crowd of chief priests, elders and scribes – with a growing number of followers among the disappointed people; disappointed, because this Messiah did not meet their expectations of divine invincibility – led the captive and shackled Jesus to the Roman judge Pontius Pilate, who was also the representative of Rome. Their (false) accusation was that Jesus would have forbidden to pay taxes to the emperor, and with this they stirred up the people against Him. But their main accusation was that He called Himself Christ, the King. And whoever called himself king, rebelled against the emperor of Rome. Therefore Pilate questioned Him on this point. But Pilate understood all too well – because Jesus Christ did not act in secret, and Pilate must have known of the sermons of this Man – that the issue was a religious conflict among the Jews themselves, and that they had handed Him over to the judge out of spite and jealousy. That therefore was the reason Pilate wanted to release Him, saying: "I find no fault in this Man!"
When Pilate, however, heard that Jesus was born in Galilee, he thought to be rid of this "dirty matter" by sending Jesus on to the judge over that area, namely king Herod, who "happened to be" at Jerusalem.

2nd blood step:

Jesus handed over to the curiosity and the mockery of Herod.

23 verse 8-12:        "And when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceeding glad: for he was desirous to see him of a long season, because he had heard many things of him; and he hoped to have seen some miracle done by him. Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing. An the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused him. And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a gorgeous robe, and sent him again to Pilate. And the same day Pilate and Herod were made friends together: for before they were at enmity between themselves."
Herod hoped to be surprised by Jesus with a "show" of His power. Therefore he was glad, when Jesus was handed over to him. He had heard so much about His wonderful power, and even thought that He might be John the Baptist, who was brought back to life by God (see Matthew 14:1-2). Because of his curiosity he spoke much with Jesus, and asked Him many questions, but the Lord Jesus did not answer him by a single word. Therefore Herod became angry and mocked Jesus, together with his soldiers. He also showed Jesus his contempt by putting a shining purple garment on Him (Mark 15:20 and John 19:2). After that he sent Jesus away, back to Pilate. Yet Pilate's action by sending Jesus to him, pleased Herod. Was there enmity between them at first, from that time on they were friendly.

3rd blood step:

Bar-Abbas preferred over Jesus.

23 verse 13-25:      "And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, Said unto them, Ye have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people: and, behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him: No, nor yet Herod: for I sent you to him; and, lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto him. I will therefore chastise him, and release him. (For of necessity he must release one prisoner unto them at the Passover feast.) And they cried out all at once, saying, Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas: (Who for a certain sedition made in the city, and for murder, was cast into prison.) Pilate therefore, willing to release Jesus, spake again to them. But they cried, saying, Crucify him, crucify him. And he said unto them the third time, Why, what evil hath he done; I have found no cause of death in him: I will therefore chastise him, and let him go. And they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And the voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed. And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required. And he released unto them him that for sedition and murder was cast into prison, whom they had desired; but he delivered Jesus to their will."
Pilate wanted to release Jesus, because he found Him not guilty. And because it was the custom that a prisoner received remittance for punishment during the Passover feast (i.e. the memorial festival of Israel's exodus from Egypt by God's hand, whereby the Passover lamb was slaughtered), Pilate therefore tried to release Jesus at the Passover. Pilate therefore asked the people: "Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?" despite the fact that he knew they had handed over Jesus because of spit and jealousy (see Matthew 27:17-18). But the people, stirred up by the chief priest and rulers of the people, demanded increasingly violently His crucifixion (and thus the release of Bar-Abbas).
Jesus is the Son of God the Father, Who is in heaven; while Bar-Abbas means "son of the father". Bar-Abbas was a murderer and rioter, and therefore his action tells us which father he was a son of, namely "the father from the depth" thus the devil. The people preferred this son of the devil over the Son of God; the rioter and murderer they preferred over the Savior, while He had done nothing but deeds of love among them. And, because Pilate, the Roman judge, could no longer control the very rebellious people, he handed over Jesus unto a true "people judgment” (which means that the people, instead of the judge, sentenced Jesus)...

CLICK HERE if you want to read this study (Chapter 23) – that is to long for the Blog.

By E. van den Worm

Saturday, 10 September 2011

LUKE (Chapter 22) - The 7 introductory blood steps which led to the atoning sacrifice of Jesus on the cross of Calvary


Part III

The life in ‘the holy of holies’ of the marriage child of God

Luke 22 verse 1-2:           "Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover. And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him, for they feared the people."
The Passover feast was near. And it was predestined that Jesus should give His life at this feast for a world lost in sin and guilt. For, this feast was established by God (see Exodus 12:1-28), and pointed to the Sacrifice of Jesus Who, as the Lamb of God, would (voluntarily) give His life to reconcile God with man.
The forces of darkness – which then were mainly active in and through the priests and scribes (the religious leaders of the Jews in those days) – tried to capture and kill Jesus in a crafty way. Reason for this was that these chief priests and scribes feared the people, because they people (still) followed Him, because they saw in Him their political Messiah. They did not see Jesus as the Savior of their souls, but mainly as a political leader, and thus as the one who would rescue and deliver them from the Romans' rule.
As we know the high priest of Israel was not allowed to enter the Holy of holies of the Israeli Tabernacle without blood (of a sacrificed animal), and without his censer, wherein the prescribed (by God) incense burned. This also was only allowed once a year, namely on the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16). Having arrived in the Holy of holies the high priest had to sprinkle the blood of the sin offering (i.e. the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the Israelites) seven times; first on the mercy seat of the Ark of the Covenant, and then seven times in front of it. These sprinklings symbolized the seven introductory steps of Jesus, which led to His sacrifice on the cross; as well as the seven actual steps which led Him to His death (on the cross).

1st introductory blood step:

Judas' betrayal

Luke 22 verse 3-6:          "Then entered satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve (disciples). And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray him unto them. And they were glad, and covenanted to give him money. And he promised, and sought opportunity to betray him unto them in the absence of the multitude."
Satan could, of the twelve disciples, use the disloyal Judas (as an instrument) to capture Jesus without rebellion. Perhaps Judas never had a (truly) repentant heart; or perhaps he gradually became entangled in the nets of the (idolatrous) mammon; for he managed the money and therefore was responsible for the finances of this core of Jesus' disciples. However sad, it is unfortunately a fact that he betrayed His Master for money – namely for thirty silver pennies, the price for a slave. And he promised the chief priests, etc. that he would seek a "good" opportunity to have Jesus captured without rebellion, without the common folk noticing anything.
Let us (be willing) to learn a lesson from this, that we being warned against the crafty temptations of satan, who tries to capture us too in the nets of the mammon, are delivered from the (often strong) desire for earthly goods and riches. Let us (be willing) to see the danger of idolatrous effects, possibly formed by material things (such as money and goods) and/or people (such as husband, wife and/or children). Let us realize that they may create a separation between us and our Savior-God. For, as is also written in 1 Timothy 6:10, hunger for money is the root of all evil. And this is, because in this world everything (and almost everybody) is for sale for money.

2nd introductory blood step:

The Passover: God's only way to salvation, which, in the Father's heart, was already established at the foundation of this world.

Luke 22 verse 7-13:        "Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the Passover must be killed. And he sent Peter and John, saying, Go and prepare us the Passover (meal) that we may eat. And they said unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare (it); And he said unto them, Behold, when ye are entered into the city, there shall a man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water; follow him into the house where he entereth in. And ye shall say unto the good man of the house, The Master saith unto thee, Where is the guest chamber, where I shall eat the Passover (meal) with my disciples? And he shall shew you a large upper room (room on the top floor) furnished: There make (it) ready. And they went, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the Passover (meal)."
Here are a few more symbols we may take to heart. The question was put where Jesus wished to eat the Passover (meal). The Lord linked up the finding of this place to some marks, which were prophesied in advance: At entering Jerusalem they would find a man, bearing a pitcher of water. A pitcher filled with water is the symbol of our repentant life, a life now (completely) devoted to God. The Passover (meal) therefore was to be celebrated in a heart and life which has turned (sincerely) to God. And, here is a man bearing a pitcher with water. In those days this did not occur often. Usually it was a woman carrying that.
The master (good man) of the house would show them a large, furnished upper room. This large, furnished upper room is the symbol of the heart which is (completely) devoted to God. Thus: we are to eat the Passover (meal), now Communion, with a heart that is turned to, and devoted to, God. We must keep our heart (with all diligence) from everything that is not good (Proverbs ); we must keep our heart for Jesus and His gracious works.
Luke 22 verse 14-18:      "And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him. And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this Passover (meal) with you before I suffer: For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves: For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come."
Jesus would eat the Passover lamb for the last time in the way, established by God in the Old Testament, and drink wine therewith, as is still customary today; for soon Jesus Himself, in and by His sacrifice on the cross of Calvary, would form the great Anti-type, whereby is meant the spiritual reality, whereof all others form a shadow. "Purge out therefore the old leaven (= symbol for sin), that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us" (1 Corinthians 5:7).
The Kingdom of God would, by His resurrection, ascension (to heaven) and by the (Pentecostal) power of the Holy Spirit, break through (begin) in the hearts of those children of men who (truly) turned to Him. In and by the Holy Spirit, this Passover will bring us in close union with His death and resurrection; make us "one planting" with them (Romans 6:5); whereby NEW and divine LIFE can be poured out into the hearts and lives of all He, by His sacrifice, was able to grant grace (Revelation 3:20b). These works of grace He put as a divine promise in the sacrament (means of grace) He was about to establish, namely the sacrament of the Communion; a promise He would confirm by the shedding of His own blood.
Luke 22 verse 19-20:      "And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament (covenant) in my blood, which is shed for you."
It is a renewal of the divine blood covenant God made with Abram (as mentioned in Genesis 15), and the (divine) works of grace of which at the end of this period of grace (i.e. in the end-time) will be so miraculous, that God will be able to realize and fulfill His great mystery – of which Revelation 10:7 speaks, and whereby is meant the revelation of His Bride(church). Then He will be able to celebrate the Supper of the Marriage of the Lamb (Revelation 19:9). This Supper precedes, and is a preparation unto, the Wedding. This is to prepare the Bride as a (divine) channel, as a (divine) instrument in His hand to gather in the last, great harvest of souls. After this harvest of souls (see Revelation -16) and after the Millennium the eternal Marriage of the Lamb will take place (Revelation 21:1-27). God then will have created a Bride for Jesus, the heavenly Bridegroom, that the eternal divine marriage feast be celebrated.
Luke 22 verse 21-23:      "But, behold, the hand of him that betrayeth me is with me on the table. And truly the Son of man goeth, as it was determined: but woe unto that man by whom he is betrayed! And they began to enquire among themselves, which of them it was that should do this thing."
Luke brings this revelation of Jesus after the establishment of the (New Testament) Communion. The other gospel writers, namely Matthew, Mark and John, place this revelation of Jesus after the eating of the (Old Testament) Passover lamb, but before the establishment of the (N.T.) Communion.
The fact that someone shares the O.T. Passover or the N.T. Communion unworthily tells us, that not everybody who eats the Communion bread and drinks the wine, shares the Kingdom of God in truth. But everybody has to examine himself scrupulously, as we can read in 1 Corinthians 11:28-29: "But (first) let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body". But this Word also tells us that there might be traitors among those that share the Communion, especially "at the last hour", when people will be possessed by satan, because of which they (a.o.) will suffer from an increasing persecution mania (Revelation 9:1-12)!

CLICK HERE if you want to read this study (Chapter 22) – that is to long for the Blog.

By E. van den Worm

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

LUKE (Chapter 21) - God’s justice is like a two-edged sword, it brings to the (sincere) believer full grace, but judgment to all others

Part III
The life in ‘the holy of holies’ of the marriage child of God


Viewed in the light of the Israeli Tabernacle, this chapter shows us the symbolism of the two tables of the Law, with on it the ten Commandments, which were hidden in the Ark of the Covenant. They depict the full justice of God, represented in the ten Commandments, although this "full justice of God" will, of course, only be revealed to us in the full (and thus complete) Word (viz. the bible) of the LIVING God. We can read about these perfect ten Commandments of God for the Kingdom of heaven (on earth) in Matthew 5:17-48; 6:1-34 and 7:1-29. This Word of God is like a sharp two-edged sword (Hebrews ). It brings about full grace and it forms a power of God to make into children of God (John 1:12) for those, who, by acceptance of this (divine) Word, have turned repentantly unto God and have given over their lives to Him, beside having a sincere faith in the Word of the cross and in His omnipotence to plant this Word into us. But for all the unwilling, the disobedient, the unrepentant, and the sinners, however, it forms the full and terrible judgment of a wrathful God. We can read in John 12:48: "He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day." And in Hebrews 10:31 we read: "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."

This full (and eternal) Word of God – which will be revealed to us by the Spirit of God in ever increasing measure in the last days (see Revelation 14:6) – will bring God's (Bride)church to the fullness of Christ in these last days. We can read this a.o. in Hebrews 9:11-12 and Ephesians 5:27: "But Christ... brought about (or obtained) an eternal redemption" ... "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." This victorious Word of God is a fact in heaven, but here on earth it must still be realized in the hearts and lives of believers, who have repented unto Him. And, as we all (could) know, the Church of God has never reached this level in the course of history; even if her image in the initial period of Christianity is to be called very wonderful indeed. But, in the end-time, God will clothe His (Bride)church with the "Bridal adornments" of perfection and justice (Revelation 12:1; 19:7-8), and take her in unto the Marriage of the Lamb (Revelation 19:9), according to the promises in His Word. It should be clear to everyone that the spiritual condition of the (Bride)church must hereto be brought to that condition of the heart of the poor widow in the first verses of this chapter.
21 verse 1-4:         "And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury (poverty) hath cast in all the living that she had."
In her deed this woman acted out a total offering, she gave everything that she possessed to God, to her Lord and Savior. God will find the same inner disposition in the end-time, in the heart of His (sincere) children, namely a total subjection; whereby He can bring them in His perfect, eternal redemption, and, spiritually seen, He can envelop them with the (divine) garment of spotlessness, wrinklelessness, holiness and blamelessness! "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ" (Ephesians 1:3).
But over those who are and remain unwilling – namely the disobedient, the idolaters and all, who wish to remain in sin – the judgment, in the fullness of God's wrath, will come of a righteous God. And this God's judgment – in and over this world – means that the demonic forces of "the spiritual wickedness in high places" will be loosed more and more, so that the people of this world will be handed over to the destructive powers of satan, in whom the wicked (and sinful) person likes to remain. These people will then have to experience the harshness, cruelty and evil of him they (consciously or not) chose for their master.
Characteristic of these judgments of God are statements like: "Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates" (Revelation ). Hereby is meant the unleashing of demonic angels upon mankind; angels who will pour out in increasing measure their calamities and destruction on humanity! The Euphrates or Frath is a river which flows at the garden of Eden, and is symbolic for mankind. (Compare: Revelation with Revelation 7:1-3 and Revelation ).
As the destruction of Jerusalem by the Roman commander-in-chief Titus, which was predicted by Jesus – and which was the result of the unbelieving, unrepentant Israelites of Jesus' days – took place around the year 70 after Christ, so also will the judgment predicted by God be poured out over the unrepentant part of His House (Church), and over the unbelievers, in the end-time.
21 verse 5-6:            "And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said, As for these things which ye behold, the days will come, in the which there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down."
21 verse 7:            "And they asked him, saying, Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass?"
When His disciples asked Him for the specific signs which would mark these days of God's judgment – signs which also will introduce His return – He gave them the following as the very first sign:
21 verse 8:            "And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them."
In the end-time satan will produce a great multitude of imitation spiritual workers. He will give them a (false) anointing which will imitate the divine work in Jesus. Yes, they will even perform wonders and signs; but they are wonders and signs of the liar (2 Thessalonians 2:9). And these "angels" of satan, pose as "angels of light", act as if they are real workers of God, and this is because they scorched their consciences "as with a cauterizing iron” In Matthew 7:22 we read how astonished the people were about their (eternal) damnation by God. For, although we here deal with laborers of the Lord, who digressed in sin and unrighteousness, they kept their calling. For the Spirit of God is able to (continue to) work through such people, while He passes by their personal salvation. We also notice this in the words of the Lord, which we find in Revelation 3:17b: "...and (thou) knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked". Compare these texts regarding the false laborers also with 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.
"Christ" means "anointed one", namely the anointed of God unto the labor for Him. But these people, namely those of 2 Corinthians 11:13-15, are false Christ’s, false anointed ones; for they were anointed by satan, but pose as "angels of light". Therefore God, as judgment, allows the strong delusion, because they did not accept Him – in Jesus Christ as God's redeeming, purifying and sanctifying power. We can also read about a similar judgment of God in Romans 1:18-32. And in 2 Thessalonians 2:10b-11 we read: "...because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie". The same story one finds in the Old Testament, in 1 Kings 22:19-22.
It will be these (false) laborers which will deceive those great multitudes of people, and catch them in their nets (Matthew 24:11 and 24). The tragic result will be that this crowd of people will be gathered as weeds in the end-time, to be bound up at the time of harvest in order to... be burned (see Matthew 13:30).
Therefore let us rather be led by the true Holy Spirit of God, Who always leads us out of sin by His purifying, sanctifying and justifying works! So, the end-time is a time wherein two spiritual movements run parallel. The first spiritual movement is that of the Holy Spirit of God, Who reveals His redeeming, purifying, sanctifying and perfecting works in full-Gospel power in His own, and Who, as a result, will create a perfect Bride(church), which will be God's instrument in the restoration of the Church and at the worldwide revival in "Latter Rain Power" (i.e. the Holy Spirit revival of the end-time, as a.o. prophesied in Joel 2:23-30). The second movement, perhaps in looks more spectacular, is that of satan, which also brings forth wonders and signs, but then of the liar! The result of this will be the false (and politically minded) world church of the end-time, about which we can read in Revelation 17, 18 and 19; also called the hidden Babylon or the "Great Whore", which will prepare the anti-Christian path of the person of the antichrist. Warned by the Word of God, let us watch and pray that we too be not entangled in the snares of these – for un-anointed eyes – hidden, anti-Christian works, of this satanic power of hidden unrighteousness.
Another form of divine judgment we will come across in the last days of the present-day world in increasing measure and eventually worldwide in extent, is that of war, and also of rebellion against governments of state!
21 verse 9-10:        "But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions (revolutions), be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by. Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom."
The red horse of Revelation 6:4, the horse which is the symbol of war and revolt, will then have been loosed upon a world averse to God. Revolt against state authorities is used more and more to, under pressure, realize certain political and social goals. More and more wars and revolts in ever increasing measure make today's world seem like one great powder keg. When all this will take place, like we see it now in today's world, then the Lord comforts His children with above word of Scripture: "Be not terrified, for I have everything under control". And in Psalm 91:7-8 we read: "A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked." And further in verse 10: "There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling (house)."
This judgment of God will only pass us by if we remain in the center of the will of God, Who is our hiding place. As there can only be that wonderful calm in the eye (namely the center or heart) of a raging and an all-destructive whirlwind, so will God also let His own hide in the shelter of His omnipotence, when His judgments of war and revolt are raging around us!
21 verse 11a:           "And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences..."
This really is relevant in our days. The violent death (symbolized by the black horse of famine, also as a result of economical recession; and the pale horse of death, in Revelation 6:5-8) will bring an abrupt end to many lives by natural disasters, such as earthquakes and famines; while also very contagious diseases, which will travel all over the world, will make many victims among the world population. But, despite all those terrible judgments the almighty God demands of the destroyer (sent by Him): "Hurt not the oil and the wine!" (Revelation 6:6b), whereby is meant: "Do not damage my sincere children, who had themselves led by the oil of the Spirit and who have been washed in the wine of My blood!" A different form of judgment of God we find in the following words:
21 verse 11b:           "...and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven."
In Revelation 6:12-14 we read: "And I beheld when he (the Lamb of God) had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood; And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. (We see the same thing when we sit on a train. Then it seems as if the trees on either side of the train flash by; but in fact the train races on, and the trees stand still. The same way the earth will be moved from her place, possibly by a collision with a meteorite, while the stars stay in their places.) And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places."
Enormous catastrophes, great disasters as a result of (very) far-reaching changes in nature and in the universe, as it were make a clean sweep in order to prepare this earth for that wonderful and divine era, called the Millennial Kingdom. For in this (divine) Kingdom the sun will shine seven times as strong as it does now (Isaiah 30:26), because of which there will be no more night (Zechariah 14:6-7). It goes without saying that man and beast with a body of flesh and blood cannot live in that Kingdom, and God will have to create a nature of a totally different composition. It will be a paradise in the full glory of God!
Another form of God's judgment we find in the persecution mania and the demonic oppression which then will rule the world. An ever increasing anti-Christian spirit will take possession of all disobedient and unrepentant people, besides increasing satanism. All this will pave the way for the global acceptance of the antichrist as ruler of the world.
21 verse 12-19:      “But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake. And it shall turn to you for a testimony. Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer: For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist. And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake. But there shall not an hair of your head perish. In your patience possess ye your souls."

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By E. van den Worm