1 Chronicles 28 / Ezekiel 37 / John 2-3
Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.
This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed at Cana in Galilee. He thus revealed his glory, and his disciples put their faith in him.
The miracles that the Son did were for a specific purpose, throughout the entirety of the time he did any miracles. Not for the general public but for that specific handful of men who were chosen by the Father and given to the Son as true brothers. Although the Father was interested in all of the ones He loved who came before the Son, these disciples were real flesh and blood humans whom he would save by the work that all of those previous sons had a knowledge of and longed for.
I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.
The miracles were done in their presence to show them that this unlikely one called Jesus was the Christ, and to help them believe. Why did they need help believing that he was God's Messiah? His identity, like the Father, was kept hidden from the general public, so the disciples needed help seeing because they all came from the same stock of unbelieving humans. As we go about searching for the Father, we should note the same thing about the many miraculous things that are happening around us all the time,a nd what they're for. We are dull and lifeless, and without them we would fall away like a dead leaf off of a branch. That we might stay close to the path that leads to the Father, when we would otherwise (if left to our own abilities) just fall away into the pit of our own nature's whims, is the purpose of the extraordinary things which happen inside us.
Another reason for the miracles, more specifically the recipients of the bulk of them, is to show a side of the Father which goes overlooked by the self-serving nature that drives the humans, what He wanted from those who would be the shepherds of His people:
Woe to the shepherds of Israel who only take care of themselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? You eat the curds, clothe yourselves with the wool and slaughter the choice animals, but you do not take care of the flock. You have not strengthened the weak or healed the sick or bound up the injured. You have not brought back the strays or searched for the lost. You have ruled them harshly and brutally. So they were scattered because there was no shepherd, and when they were scattered they became food for all the wild animals. My sheep wandered over all the mountains and on every high hill. They were scattered over the whole earth, and no one searched or looked for them.
Jesus went to the poor, the lame and the broken hearted, those who mourned because they were oppressed. He bound up the broken and healed the sick to declare a specific character of the God whom Israel was chosen to serve. He was interested in that which is merely a nuisance to that which makes the humans only able to be interested in their own plight, at the expense of those whom they should be taking care of according to the law and the specific commandments that the teachers in Israel claimed to be experts about. They studied and became entrenched in learning the details of it, at the expense of understanding why they were even given.
"You are Israel's teacher," said Jesus, "and do you not understand these things?
Nicodemus would have very well known about so many passages throughout the words he studied which showed a side of God that was obviously hard to see. It is not hidden but seems to exist as a secret kind of message even though it's plainly written down and preserved. It's just that what rules the humans doesn't want to see that side of God, or what He may be interested in because it doesn't feed their need to self-preserve and self-protect.
I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony.
The "we" Jesus speaks of are the "many prophets and righteous men" including John, who have heard the voice of their Father and seen His face because He loves them and calls them out of the world ruled by the human animals who can only serve their own purpose.
Then he said to me, "Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, `This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe into these slain, that they may live.' " So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.
I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, `You must be born again.' The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.
The family of the Father's true sons who ever lived is alive with the breath of what gives them life; that is, His life being breathed into their dry bones laying in the ground as He remembers to redeem them from this creation so they can all be with Him where He is. The Son knew what the OT scriptures said about himself and the Father who gave him life, which is the same thing that would give all God's sons their life. That is the thrust of his conversation with this teacher of Israel who couldn't comprehend. God's breath would blow on them and give life to their dry bones as He calls them from everywhere they are.
I will take the Israelites out of the nations where they have gone. I will gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. There will be one king over all of them and they will never again be two nations or be divided into two kingdoms. They will no longer defile themselves with their idols and vile images or with any of their offenses, for I will save them from all their sinful backsliding, and I will cleanse them. They will be my people, and I will be their God.
I will establish them and increase their numbers, and I will put my sanctuary among them forever. My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people. Then the nations will know that I the LORD make Israel holy, when my sanctuary is among them forever.
In the spirit and manner of Hebrews 9, which starts to show how the things in the tabernacle and the tabernacle itself was only a copy of the better thing, God's sanctuary and dwelling place is not a building made by the hands of men. That was only good enough to be repeatedly torn down and made into rubble. Even that, and then its rebuilding, is yet another copy, pointing forward at the better thing, the perfect thing—that which existed, then was destroyed, and then was rebuilt by God, permanently and forever.
Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days...the temple he had spoken of was his body.
After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the Scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.
God is for the small, unlikely group He has chosen to become His people, just as He made the Son to look like the unlikely one. That is the purpose and point of the copy which was natural Israel, which pointed to what the Son gave to the Father when he finished his work for Him. They aren't like all the other humans, but made different by Him and their willingness to be faithful to Him instead of what all the others are ruled and led by—the instincts that come so easy to act on and follow.
He (the master of the banquet) did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew.
This is a very tight, one sentence synopsis of God and the humans, who He chooses—the unlikely ones, the servants, those who are last according to the humans—versus those to whom He keeps His truth hidden, those who assume they're chosen because of the power of their own natural will, which they also assume God recognizes and obliges.
At that time Jesus said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.
Whatever the humans by and large recognize and uphold is the opposite of how God sees, views, beholds things. The humans who are chosen to become His true people, not by the will of man, will not be the ones the humans expect will be chosen, which is something that Jesus repeats throughout his teaching, part of the preserved words, but unable to be actually comprehended, or rather accepted by the humans because they don't want to, because it's not in them to be able to.
That is a simple and clear truth, yet infinitely unfathomable. The ones who will understand that are those to whom that truth will be revealed. Not accidentally, but by the will of God, they will also be rejected by the humans who can't know it so they're separated from them and have to cling to their Father and their brothers whom also are being rejected because of that thing living in them that the animals hate and are repelled by, but don't even know why. They think they know, and they develop all sort of ways to find agreement with that feeling of repulsion and hatred toward those who are chosen, ironically having to do with how the chosen are wrong, not righteous like they the un chosen are. The irrational, hypocritical self-rightness of the animal nature which controls them all, never ends. It never just gets better, or heals itself, or becomes good which is the lie.
Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many people saw the miraculous signs he was doing and believed in his name. But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. He did not need man's testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man.
The humans can never understand the things that are true about the secret God, because God is hidden from them and they can't know the truth about Him. When they think they know they are only able to make conjecture based on what natural things are available to them, because they're natural, not spiritual. In order to know what's actually true about God, it has to be revealed specially, to whomever God wants it revealed, as per the words of Jesus, which are true and do not change.
All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
The humans read this and say, "Yes, we read that, but it means this, or that," applying yet again all that they have available to them—the natural, and so their understanding of it cannot be true because they don't have spiritual discernment of what it means, only natural, which is inferior because it's always changing according to the needs of whoever it is that's trying to figure it out. When Jesus speaks about what he knows, the actual spiritual reality, the better thing, that which all the natural things about God and what He's done can only point at, the humans can only answer with what they know according to their reality, which is the inferior reality.
Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days." The Jews replied, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?"
The humans assume they can just figure out what Jesus is talking about, because they assume to have so much human information about the temple, which has been reinforced by the other humans all their lives, because the natural reality is all the humans will ever be able to know and comprehend, control and rule over.
In reply Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. " "How can a man be born when he is old?" Nicodemus asked. "Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb to be born!"
Again, the natural reaction from a natural human who was too afraid in the natural reality to come to Jesus in the daylight. Even if his intentions may have been good, still the natural reality and the fear brought by the natural, animal instincts, which makes the animal react to what it perceives is the reality of what it can comprehend (only the natural, what it sees and hears, then comprehends with its natural faculties).
The secret journey of the sons of God will be in first recognizing what the truth may be, even if only by the natural faculties, which have been connected to the spiritual reality by the work that has to be done to even begin that transformation which must be done. And it's not what we'd hope for or assume, by our own natural faculties within us. That's the bullshit lie that the self-appointed leaders in christianity world will tell their sheep—that it's easy, and anyone can do it. If anyone could do it then we'd be able to see truth in the world, but all there is is a bunch of wild animals assuming they know the way to God, and a bunch of ignorant sheep who've been led astray by the liars who just don't know themselves—all they have is their human credentials, which mean nothing to God (Jesus vs. leaders of "Israel").
First, the sons have to be given the ability to even see with eyes, and hear with ears, which can only be given by the spiritual beings who are doing the work of God, as per those He has chosen to have those things, to become sons. Then the sons will have to be given the ability to patiently endure as the transformation takes place. With the enhancement and growth of the one reality (spiritual), will come the degradation of the other reality (natural). So whatever the sons are, have, or could be or have, naturally speaking—whatever is their natural life—they'll have to lose in order to find their other life and identity, that being a son of God.
These are particular humans whom God has chosen to be His, and we can only assume they'll know who they are as the process starts happening to them, sort of the reverse of what happened in the first century, like a mirror of events on a general scale. His law will have to be put into their hearts, by the miraculous working of the spiritual beings who carry out God's will amongst the humans, who break into a human's natural reality and begin making the conduit from the natural to the spiritual.
That is the nature of the journey of the son of God toward his Father. At a certain point there will only be the natural reality, although they will perhaps have had some supernatural things happen to them before in their lives, to keep them sort of pointed to a desire to know what's true. Those things will be few and far between though, and will only amount to that interest. The liars will tell them it means something that just reinforces the lie, even though that's wrong.
Once the intention of God is purposed in that individual, then the spiritual reality begins to be revealed to them, that which is hidden to all the humans around them. Because of that, they won't be able to find validation from them for what's happening, because no man can do what only the teacher is able to do. Although that's very frustrating and somewhat depressing, it's actually good because it makes him come away from all the lies and the liars who tell them. Also, "begins to be revealed," is an important thing to understand, because another lie, that which comes from within himself, is that it all happens quick and then it's done.
And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts.
If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.
David is accepted by God as the representation of a man who would pursue God's love, who could be acceptable to Him. Faithfulness to what one knows is happening within him, pointing him toward what's true, even if it isn't validated by the natural reality or any of the humans around him. Believing God despite all the other contradictions brings more ability to continue to believe and endure with what is so difficult because it's so against everything he knows. It will also bring more of the ability to actually become pleasing to God because of a willingness and devotion to what seems contrary to him, to what his nature rejects, and is therefore hard to embrace on the natural level because it runs contrary to everything he's learned is acceptable and respectable, valuable—all the way down to the most secret places of his heart.
He (God) said to me (David): "Solomon your son is the one who will build my house and my courts, for I have chosen him to be my son, and I will be his father. I will establish his kingdom forever if he is unswerving in carrying out my commands and laws, as is being done at this time."
David, though, is another human who assumes he knows what God's intentions are. When God was speaking through Nathan to him about the Son who would build God's house, David according to his natural inclinations, and in the capacity of those limitations, assumed that God was talking about his natural son, Solomon, which He wasn't. Solomon turned out to not be a human whose heart was pointed toward God, as his father David's was. Although God loved David, He wasn't speaking about any of the humans, because the humans were all tainted, poisoned, polluted, affected by that nature of the wild animal that inhabits them and leads them, that which envelopes and determines their identities before Him.
Once they're born into the world, and that nature of the wild animal sets in to them, that's it and they're dead to God because they're inhabited by it; it determines what they are and will be. Jesus was the only human who God didn't let that nature of the wild animal settle into. Because God's life was in and near him, surrounding him and living in his heart, even from the moment he was conceived, it was something he was used to. He was handled and touched by the presence of God living inside him even while he was in the womb, so that it was never far from him, always so close. That's what made him perfect, unpolluted, unblemished, unstained by that wild animal nature that is hostile to God, which is afraid of Him and naturally against Him, even in its deepest parts, where it lives and find its most true identity.
The copy that we have to look at—that which exists and we can see is true in the natural world for the sons' benefit to teach them about things they can't otherwise know because the actual reality is so far removed from what they have the capacity for understanding—is in the animals themselves. The observation one can easily make about the life of a common cat and the nature it automatically takes on, depending upon the circumstances of its environment shortly after it's born, relates to how Jesus was different than all the other humans, how he was special to God.
Simply put, if a cat has kittens in a house where there is human contact from when the kittens are born, are handled and touched by the humans, they will turn out tame and nice, even useful to the humans as some desirable pet. If the same kittens are born in the wild and there is no human contact, even for a week or so, they will turn out very different. They will be wild and afraid of the humans, unable to ever have that nature fully changed in them to match how the tame kittens were. It only takes a week for that nature to take hold of them, and once it sets in, that's what and who they are for the rest so their natural lives.
Because the nature of God was in Jesus even from the beginning, that wild animal nature was never allowed to take hold in him, to settle into him, to become the thing that defined him, as it does with every other human that has ever existed before or after Jesus. This fundamental truth about who Jesus was is totally negated by the belief that he was some god who came down here and took on the form of a human, another reason it's such an insidiously deceptive lie. The beholding of it totally prohibits one from knowing the truth as it is given by God, what the first century sons of God actually knew, but which went away.
There are so many lies that come from so many groups, each of which claims to have the exclusive truth about God, who exclusively claim to know the way to Him. The truth isn't contained in words written down, not in a doctrinal statement or any book, even the bible. The printed words aren't able to give a human life; they can only reinforce what the living word is teaching the son in the deep places within him, where no man can reach. No natural, printed words can ever penetrate to show the way to a Father who is thoroughly unnatural, not contained or explained by anything or anyone that is.
Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.
The teacher is spirit, the living word that can penetrate all the way down further into the truest parts of a man, because he's not bound by the physical limitations of what he used to be bound by. These are the words spoken by Ezekiel, which do not speak to anything, anyone, or any group of natural humans, like humans who call themselves God's people because they're naturally this or that, or believe this or that set of lies about the spiritual reality. It is about the true sons of God in the true reality of the world where God lives, which is spiritual and cannot be known by the humans unless they're chosen to have that reality revealed to them.
My servant David will be king over them, and they will all have one shepherd. They will follow my laws and be careful to keep my decrees. They will live in the land I gave to my servant Jacob, the land where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children's children will live there forever, and David my servant will be their prince forever. I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant.
Those are the sons who will have the spirit and life of God put into the deep parts of their heart. That life will teach them, on that very deep and true level, what God's law and commands are. They will be able to know and be faithful to God's law and commands because they are aware of that life living in them, as it is getting closer to them and making them like the tame animal, which is useful to its owner. Before that condition began to exist in them, they were fully set by that wild animal nature, as is seen in the examples of the world that we can observe. Because that wild animal nature is so fully rooted in them, it takes such a long, arduous, wearisome and problematic time for any real and actual transformation to happen.
It doesn't follow the natural course of how we would naturally want it to go. It holds fast to the copy which holds true for the reality, and as difficult and impossible as taking the full grown feral tomcat and making it a nice, tame pet. It's a beautiful thing to understand on one level, but exasperating on another because it's so different than anything we can draw upon to understand it. It's hope, but not immediate or instantaneous, which would make it a cheap sort of veneer and nothing lasting. What's true takes a long, hard time, and lots of what we don't naturally want to give—patient endurance and obedience to what is in that place deep inside us, where God's law is being established, and where it's important that we remain faithful and obedient to Him.
Unlike men who can only see the outward things a man does, God is able to search and evaluate every motive behind every thought. Those will be what we are judged by—whether we were purely devoted to God based on the secret things of our hearts.
This (men showing whether or not the requirements of the law are written on their hearts) will take place on the day when God will judge men's secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.
Then we are confronted by the dilemma of how to live a sinless life, how to have this pure heart that the Lord demands from us, even though plagued by the sinful nature.
I heard a teacher say yesterday that this was just a paradox, and then he thanked God for the provision of the Lamb, whose blood is worthy to fix it. A paradox is "a seemingly contradictory statement, exhibiting inexplicable or contradictory aspects, that may nonetheless be true." He left out a huge part of it, though. Salvation rests upon a covenant between God and man. Those who would attain to salvation in this age are bound not to the old covenant, but to the "covenant of the new creation," prophesied in Jeremiah:
"This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time," declares the LORD. "I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people."
God's covenants are a contract between Him and His people, meaning there are two sides that are responsible to fulfill their end of the contract. When man does not fulfill his responsibility to the covenant, then the terms don't apply and God is not bound to fulfill His either. This is the case over and over in the OT between God and His people. In those days, God said, via a covenant, that He would do all the good things He promised to the people, if they were to remain devoted and faithful to Him, and recognize Him as their only God. He also allowed the people to sacrifice animals to Him so they could keep their life and not die.
The new covenant is not based on the blood of bulls and goats, but on the blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus the redeemer, God's Christ and only Son. It isn't natural in nature, but spiritual, hidden, and therefore unable to be recognized by the humans. The word "life" also takes on new meaning via the new covenant—a precedent set by the Lord, distinguishing between "life" and "life." Man's end of this new covenant is to obey the law that is put into the man's heart.
Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
Paul also speaks about the new meaning of "life" to Timothy:
Command [those who have material possessions] to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.
What Paul indicates, when he says "life that is truly life," is that there is another life that isn't life as he knew it. No longer (since Jesus) does true life refer to the life that every man lives as his physical existence here on the earth. Since Jesus, whose blood is the symbol that makes the new covenant valid, life is not the natural, but the spiritual life that we live to God in our heart, which is the preview of eternal life.
This is the life that Paul lived while still in his mortal body, from when he was born from above until when he died. He abandoned the other "life" (what the humans call life) in his quest to find and know that elusive love which can only come from God. It is the life of searching after, fighting for, and giving everything up, for the love that can only come from God. It is the most precious thing in the universe, and it's only given to those who want it, and who show they want it by being faithful and responsive to that process that's going on inside them. It is "to know this love that surpasses knowledge." Paul says knowing this love makes it possible to "be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God."
What Jesus and Paul both say is that no longer can animals ever be called sons of God. Now (since Jesus) the terms are different, because now God requires the man's life—the ultimate valuable thing to a man—in order to fulfill this covenant. The man must lose everything that makes up his life, everything he thinks is valuable, everything he loves; in order to fulfill the contract.
We have examples from the word that show us what this means. These are the lives of those whom Jesus came to save. In return for their lives, they get real life. Nothing else matters, if one thinks about it, because all the things we do in our lives all just come to nothing. The things that men think are so valuable are nothing to the man who finds real life—they actually become like garbage to him.
But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him...
This is the man who presented his body as a living sacrifice to God, giving up everything he could have had or attained to, which men consider worthy to attain to. And he found another set of values, which are God's values and not man's values.
What is highly valued among men is detestable in God's sight.
The thing most highly valued to God is His love.
There is a huge fallacy I have noticed among many people who want to know God, who want to follow the Lord: that the love which comes from God, the invisible power which can change a man, is somehow cheap or easy. They would never say those words, but the way they regard it shows how they feel about it. I am not necessarily ascribing an outward despising of it, but more of an ignorance about just how valuable it is.
There is a general feeling that God can be merely another part of our life, along with our career, family, possessions, children, dreams, time, etc. That's a religious idea, though, and the presumption that because we have what nobody else has, therefore we are automatically right before God, is erroneous. Whatever it cost Jesus, Paul and all those written about concerning the new covenant, is also what it will cost us if we want to know God's love. That is our end of the covenant, what the teacher forgot to say yesterday—just how much it costs to find the love of God.
The attitude that "all we have to do is know the truth and then get baptized, then we are in," (assured resurrection along with a place in the kingdom), seems to be the pervasive one. I realize that is general, but the truth is that that is what people think. That is an arrogant position to take, to assume that God's love will automatically just follow that, to us, when we have done the proper things. In reality, God's love is so valuable that it is elusive and hidden, just like that treasure in the field.
There is no "These are the steps you must take to be in the kingdom," as far as man is concerned. Man does not control God's world and decide for Him who will be in His kingdom. As a matter of fact it is not "being in the kingdom" which should interest us, rather finding and knowing God as our reward, as Abraham did. Our goal should increasingly become "being consumed by the love that comes from God," which is hidden, rare, pure and super expensive. It is so valuable that there is no price you can pay for it, other than "everything," which is not an abstract term. If we have any aspirations, any dreams of attaining anything in this life, that is what it should be—to find and know the love which is in the Father, in the genuine tradition of Jesus and Paul.
I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge--that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.