The returning of Jesus in two aspects will be perfectly orderly and not chaotic as viewed from Heaven's Operations Office.
It will be a grand, joyful (safe for kids), discovery adventure for the faithful followers of Jesus but temporarily very painful and traumatic followers of Jesus who knew Him but lived compromised lives.
There will be overwhelming terror for those who have hated Jesus all their lives and who never signed up for His program. It’s God’s universe not ours and He does what He pleases. We are welcome houseguests if we honor Jesus in all we say and do. It’s very easy for any one who God appears to using at a given time to want to be in the lime light. Every musician in a great orchestra must keep an eye on the Conductor and not sound any maverick notes nor draw attention to himself.
"There is no limit to what God can do through an available person, as long as that person does not mind who gets the credit." (Ray Stedman)"
Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.
Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain. (Philippians 2:5-16)
I looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood. And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place. And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?” (Revelation 6:12-17)
Secular humanism assumes that God does not exist, or if He does exist, He is irrelevant. Man therefore controls and determines his own destiny. Scientism is a similar philosophy--it assumes that the physical, material world is all there is. Scientific methods will therefore completely explain the universe fully and completely-given enough time and effort. Not so!
What is Revelation from God? | The Limits of Science | The Microcosm and the Macrocosm | Absolute Geocentricity | Birth pangs
The Biblical world-view is far different. God brought to entire universe into existence-ex nihilo meaning “out of nothing.” God is not a no-thing He is eternal, living, seething with vast unlimited power.
For thus says the High and Lofty One, Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
“I dwell in the high and holy place, With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
An invisible spiritual dimension, inhabited by great numbers of angels, powerfully influences our daily affairs and the course of history. Not only did God bring everything into existence, but He actively maintains the universe—supplying both force and power input from "the other side" of the vacuum (See Personal Update Articles).
Genesis tells us that God's purpose for man was stewardship, exploration, and governance over the Creation on His behalf (Genesis 1:26-28). But a revolt among the angels, led by the mighty archangel Lucifer, in his original rebellion threw the physical universe into disarray and spiraling decay. Infiltrating the human race through Eve, this destroying, murderous spiritual being, now known as Satan, seized control of earth's throne, thus becoming for a season "the god of this world (age)" (Ephesians 2:2).
The issue of man's loss of control over the Creation is discussed by the writer to the Epistle of Hebrews in the New Testament. The writer describes the impeccable credentials of Jesus Christ who will restore man's intended dominion over creation—in the age which immediately follows the one in which we now live:
It has been testified somewhere, "What is man that thou art mindful of him, or the son of man, that thou carest for him? Thou didst make him [man] for a little while lower than the angels, thou hast crowned him with glory and honor, putting everything in subjection under his [man's] feet." [Psalm 8]
Now in putting everything in subjection to man, he left nothing outside his control. As it is, we do not yet see everything in subjection to man. But we see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for every one. For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through suffering. For he who makes whole and those who are made whole have all one body. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, "I will proclaim thy name to my brethren, in the midst of the congregation I will praise thee." And again, "I will put my trust in him." And again, "Here am I, and the children God has given me." Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same nature, that through death he might destroy him who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong bondage. (Hebrews 2:6-15 Modified RSV)
A short cryptic verse immediately precedes this description of the restorative work of Jesus: "For it was not to angels that God subjected the world to come, of which we are speaking." (Hebrews 2:5) A little reflection will show that if the Millennial kingdom, which will immediately follow the return of Christ, is not governed by the angels—then evidently the angels do right now have a prominent role in how God governs the present age. The fallen angels and the unfallen angels are all presently under the authority of Yahweh Sabaoth, the Lord of Hosts. Mans' Lost Dominion will be restored at last--by Jesus.
Can we find examples in the Bible of God's governing work through the agency of angels in the present age? Indeed we can! The book of Job begins with a description of the bene elohim, the angels, appearing in heaven before the throne of God. Among them is Satan. In order to develop deeper character in Job, his faithful servant, God allows Satan to test Job to the limits. Only Job's life is to be spared:
And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, all that Job has is in your power; only upon himself do not put forth your hand." So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD. Now there was a day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house; and there came a messenger to Job, and said, "The oxen were plowing and the asses feeding beside them; and the Sabeans fell upon them and took them, and slew the servants with the edge of the sword; and I alone have escaped to tell you." While he was yet speaking, there came another, and said, "The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants, and consumed them; and I alone have escaped to tell you." While he was yet speaking, there came another, and said, "The Chaldeans formed three companies, and made a raid upon the camels and took them, and slew the servants with the edge of the sword; and I alone have escaped to tell you." While he was yet speaking, there came another, and said, "Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house; and behold, a great wind came across the wilderness, and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young people, and they are dead; and I alone have escaped to tell you..." Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the LORD. And the LORD said to Satan, "Whence have you come?" Satan answered the LORD, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it." And the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still holds fast his integrity, although you moved me against him, to destroy him without cause." Then Satan answered the LORD, "Skin for skin! All that a man has he will give for his life. But put forth thy hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face." And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, he is in your power; only spare his life." So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD, and afflicted Job with loathsome sores from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. And he took a potsherd with which to scrape himself, and sat among the ashes. (Job 1:12-2:8)
Much sound theology is found in this passage: Satan can do nothing without permission from the Lord-He must always stay within appointed bounds. Yet he apparently does have power over raiding bands of nomads, over weather, and the forces of nature, and over Job's physical health.
This passage does not imply that Satan causes all disease and suffering, or that all natural disasters are Satan's mischief. But from Job we gain the insight that when Jesus calmed the raging storm on the Sea of Galilee, He may have spoken to an angel:
"One day Jesus got into a boat with his disciples, and he said to them, 'Let us go across to the other side of the lake.' So they set out, and as they sailed he fell asleep. And a storm of wind came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in danger. And they went and woke him, saying, 'Master, Master, we are perishing!' And he awoke and rebuked the wind and the raging waves; and they ceased, and there was a calm. He said to them, 'Where is your faith?' And they were afraid, and they marveled, saying to one another, 'Who then is this, that he commands even wind and water, and they obey him?'" (Luke 8:22-25)Jerusalem was besieged by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon for almost a year before it fell on the 9th of Av, 586 BC. However in September 592, 6 years earlier, the prophet Ezekiel was caught up and taken "in visions of God to Jerusalem" by THE angel of the Lord (1).
The prophet was shown the inner idolatries of the people, the priests, and the leaders which had made God's judgment inevitable. Ezekiel is shown the destruction of the city as the work of six destroying angels (Ezekiel 9:2). But we know from history that the armies of Nebuchadnezzar were the visible agents of the city's destruction. Ezekiel is also shown a seventh angel at work just prior to the destruction-he was a "recording angel" who marked the foreheads of the godly remnant in Jerusalem with an invisible "X" (the handwritten letter Tav, ת). Thus those who wept and groaned over Jerusalem's impending doom were spared. Not only did Ezekiel witness what was going on behind the scenes of Nebuchadnezzar's destruction of Jerusalem, he "time-traveled" in the Spirit some six years into the future to see this event before it happened! (For the full account see "The 9th of Av, 586 BC: Ezekiel and the Destruction of Jerusalem"),
Late in the reign of David, Satan incited the King to take a census of his army. Evidently David had lapsed to counting on his own resources forgetting that God was the power behind the throne. This census greatly displeased the Lord who gave David three choices as to the consequences of this sin,
Thus says the LORD, Three things I offer you; choose one of them, that I may do it to you...Shall three years of famine come to you in your land? Or will you flee three months before your foes while they pursue you? Or shall there be three days' pestilence in your land? Now consider, and decide what answer I shall return to him who sent me." Then David said... "I am in great distress; let us fall into the hand of the LORD, for his mercy is great; but let me not fall into the hand of man." So the LORD sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the appointed time; and there died of the people from Dan to Beersheba seventy thousand men. And when the angel stretched forth his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD repented of the evil, and said to the angel who was working destruction among the people, "It is enough; now stay your hand." And the angel of the LORD was by the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. Then David spoke to the LORD when he saw the angel who was smiting the people, and said, "Lo, I have sinned, and I have done wickedly; but these sheep, what have they done? Let thy hand, I pray thee, be against me and against my father's house..." And David built there an altar to the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the LORD heeded supplications for the land, and the plague was averted from Israel.
Here we see that an angel under the direction of THE Angel of the Lord was the behind-the-scenes cause that brought death by pestilence to 70,000 Israelites.
A well-known account of angels bringing about a military victory for Israel is found in 2 Kings 18ff and 2 Chron. 32. In about 701 BC Sennacherib King of Assyria assaulted Jerusalem when Hezekiah was King. Despite his successful conquest of neighboring cities and other plundering and pillaging campaigns, it was not time for Jerusalem's judgment and would not be for another century. God answered the intercessory prayers of the King and the prophet Isaiah in a spectacular way:
"Therefore thus says the LORD concerning the king of Assyria, He shall not come into this city or shoot an arrow there, or come before it with a shield or cast up a siege mound against it. By the way that he came, by the same he shall return, and he shall not come into this city, says the LORD. For I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake and for the sake of my servant David." And that night THE angel of the LORD went forth, and slew a hundred and eighty-five thousand in the camp of the Assyrians; and when men arose early in the morning, behold, these were all dead bodies. Then Sennacherib king of Assyria departed, and went home, and dwelt at Nineveh. And as he was worshiping in the house of Nisroch his god, Adrammelech and Sharezer, his sons, slew him with the sword, and escaped into the land of Ararat. And Esarhaddon his son reigned in his stead.
Herodotus, the Greek historian, says that the Assyrian army was suddenly infested in mice overnight. Perhaps God's appointed mice brought about a sudden attack of a virulent form of bubonic plague. Without a sword being drawn 185,000 Assyrians died in short order and Sennacherib was killed shortly after by his own sons.
The Epistle to the Hebrews speaks of guardian angels who protect the elect of God (Hebrews 1:14). The story of Job's testing is clear evidence that most of the time we all enjoy wonderful and continuing protection from evil. If Satan had his way with us, we would all be shredded and destroyed in very short order.
Bookstores these days feature rows and rows of popular books on angels. The spirits they describe are a far cry from the mighty spirit beings the Bible reveals. God rules the universe, nothing is outside His control--and there are no accidents.
"It is important to recognize...that God doesn't just sit in heaven and push buttons on a control panel. He uses "messengers," better known to us by the Greek word: angels. The Biblical view of the universe is not the modern one of vast reaches of barren space interrupted every couple of million miles or so by flying dead boulders. The Biblical view of the universe is that it is teeming and throbbing with life everywhere. The cosmos is heavily populated with "legions" and "myriads" of angelic beings, of various ranks (Colossians 1:16) and "species" (see, for instance, the descriptions in Ezekiel 1:5-25 and Revelation 4:6-8). Angels are associated with astronomical phenomena throughout the Bible (Judges 5:20; Job 38:7; Isaiah 14:13; Matthew 24:29; Jude 13; Revelation 1:20; 8:10-12; 9:1;12:4) as well as with the activity of the weather: wind, storms, and lightning are spoken of in connection with the actions of God and the angels in both blessing and curse (Genesis 8:1; 41:27; Exodus 10:13,19; 14:21; 15:10; 19:16; Numbers 11:31; Psalm 18:10; 104:3,4; 107:25; 135:7; 147:18;148:8; Ezekiel 1:4ff; Matthew 24:31; John 3:8; Acts 2:2; Revelation 7:1-3; 8:5,7; 16:8, 17, 18). Clearly, the Biblical world view does not attribute changes in weather to impersonal "forces" or "processes:"
He makes the clouds his chariot
and rides on the wings of the wind.
He makes winds his messengers [angels],
flames of fire his servants. (Psalm 104:3, 4, NIV)
"God controls the government of the universe," said Calvin. "No wind ever arises or increases except by God's express command." Further, "since angels are the powers of God, it follows that they never cease from their office of working. For God never can rest: he sustains the world by his energy, he governs everything however minute, so that not even a sparrow falls to the ground without his decree (Matthew 10:29)...God works continually by angels...so that all creatures are animated by angelic motion: not that there is a conversion of the angel into an ox or a man, but because God exerts and diffuses his energy in a secret manner, so that no creature is content with his own peculiar vigor, but is animated by angels themselves." Martin Luther, as usual more pithy and direct, took seriously the psalmist's statement that the wind has wings. After a particularly severe and violent storm, he offered his opinions on the subject: "The devil provokes such storms, but good winds are produced by good angels. Winds are nothing but spirits, either good or evil. The devil sits there and snorts, and so do the angels when the winds are salubrious."
"The Biblical world view is uncompromising: God is running the world. Every atom in the universe is under His command. His Word created and sustains in Him. That is why He can assert His power and authority in such absolute terms:
I form the light and create darkness,
I make peace and create calamity,
I, the LORD, do all these things. (Isaiah 45:7)
Who can speak and have it happen
if the LORD has not decreed it?
Is it not from the mouth of the Most High
that both calamities and good things come?
(Lamentations 3:37, 38, NIV)" (2)
1. THE Angel of the Lord (with the article THE) is a theophany, or Old Testament appearance of the Son of God in human form, see http://www.ldolphin.org/AngelL.html. This angel reveals himself to Joshua as Yahweh Sabaoth, the commander of the armies of the Lord, in Joshua 5:13-15. A glimpse of these vast resources of God was shown to Elisha's servant in 2 Kings 6:15-17. Angels appear prominently in the book of the Revelation taking a major role in events of the tribulation period, see Rev. 2-3; 7:1-2; 8:3-12; 9:1, 11, 13-14; 10:1-7; 11:15; 14:6, 8, 15-17; 16:2-17; 17:7, Rev. 18:1, 21; 19:9, 17; 20:1; 22:6, 8, 16.
2. David Chilton, Power in the Blood, (Wolgemuth and Hyatt, Brentwood, TN, 1987), p. 66-67.
Originated June 4, 1997
Revisited February 24, 2020
I find people today will listen to a true story told by a real person but they shut out talking heads, commentators, preachers,
"Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.
But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come,
he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into.
Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” (Matthew 24:42-44) Messiah
Saint Saens Organ Symphony
Mozart Symphony #40
Pachelbel Canon in D
As disciples of Jesus we each has a unique true story to tell. You have an amazing, candid, true story to pass on to everyone around you today. Most are very lost and disconnected.
”But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake. For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you.
And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,” we also believe and therefore speak, knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you.” (2 Corinthians 4:3-14)
When Jesus returns He will do so with and through His Church. He will simultaneously show Himself in the heavens above!
“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.“ (Matthew 24:29-31)
“And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days. “And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the Lord Shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, As the Lord has said, Among the remnant whom the Lord calls.” (Joel 2:28-32)
We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.” (2 Thessalonians 1:3-10)
This full disclosure of Jesus IN His people means all the work He has being doing inside us will be made public information. No need to be alarmed if you and I keep short accounts with Jesus now.
But there are ominous caution lights flashing!
“Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.
“But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” (Matthew 7:21-27)
“For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.
Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.
”For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building. According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (2 Corinthians 5:7-14)
“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.” (1 Corinthians 3:9-17)
An incredible new universe has already been created by Jesus for the family of Jesus.
Email Lambert Dolphin
February 24, 2020.