Fellowship with God

Fellowship with Christ

Z-Axis Fellowship

Sovereign
Lord
High Priest
Priesthood of the Church
Abiding in the Power of Christ
Abiding in Hope
Obedience to the Holy Spirit
Filling of the Holy Spirit
Obey His Commandments
Evaluation Throne of Christ
Victory Over Satan

Sovereign

God has always existed as the three persons of the Trinity.  The members of the Trinity, God, the Lord, and Holy Spirit, were and always have been co-equal and co-eternal.  Then God created the Universe.  The Father designed it; the Lord specified it; and the Holy Spirit produced it.  Then God created the angels, who were called sons of God.  God became their Father, and the Lord revealed Himself to them as the Angel of the Lord.  The Angel of the Lord was not a created being.  He was the Lord who appeared as an angel and son of God.

After Satan rebelled and was sentenced to the Lake of Fire along with a third of the angels, he appealed the decision, and God granted the appeal.  Man was created to resolve the appeal.  When man sinned, Satan became the ruler of the world.  The Lord offered man a solution to his sin, which left him spiritually dead and subject to condemnation with Satan.  The redemption solution required that the Lord become a man and pay for man's sins.  Only the Lord could satisfy the judicial demands of the Father, and only a perfect man could be a substitute for sinful man.

Therefore,  Jesus Christ came into the world, born of a virgin and conceived by the Holy Spirit.  Jesus Christ, the uniquely born Son of God, was the Lord and perfect humanity combined in Hypostatic Union.   He was not an angel, but a man.  He was also the same Lord, who had always existed as the second person of the Trinity.  He was undiminished Deity and perfect humanity combined in Hypostatic Union.  He was the God-man.

Jesus Christ obeyed the will of the Father and went to the Cross where He died as a substitute for the sins of the world.  He redeemed mankind from sin so that all who believed in Him would not perish but have Eternal Life.

After paying for the sins of the world, Jesus Christ died physically and was Resurrected the third day.  Sin was no longer an issue for man, who was free to accept the gift of Eternal Life on the basis of faith in Jesus Christ.  With the sins of man paid for, Satan no longer had power over man, and he lost the rulership of the world.  Jesus Christ was the victor.  The Lord Jesus Christ paraded Satan and his demons in a triumphal procession.

After forty days the Lord Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven to be with the Father.  It was then that the Father bestowed on Him the title of "King of kings and Lord of lords."  The Lord Jesus Christ in Hypostatic Union was invited to sit on the right hand of the Throne of God.  Thus, the God-man in Hypostatic Union became the ruler over all Creation.  The Lord had previously occupied this position as the second person of the Trinity, but now the Lord Jesus Christ in Resurrection body, who appeared as a man, became the Sovereign ruler of all Creation.  So, sitting on the Throne of God is a man, who is also God.  The Lord Jesus Christ, the God-man, is the Sovereign God over all Creation.

Ruler Over Creation

God the Father, who is the Sovereign over all things, turned rule over all Creation to the Son.  The Son later became the Lord Jesus Christ.  As the God-man, He is the Sovereign ruler over all Creation (Isa 40:26).

Psalm 89:1-2
1  I will sing of the Gracious Love of the LORD forever;
To all generations I will make known Your faithfulness with my mouth.
2  For I have said, "Gracious Love will be built up forever;
In the heavens You establish Your faithfulness."
"Gracious Love" is the Hebrew ds#j# (chesed), which means Gracious Love or unfailing Love.  The Lord's Gracious, or unfailing, Love is forever.  He is faithful to all generations.  His Gracious Love will be built up forever.  It will continue to grow and expand as it is poured out on all creatures.  In the heavens the Lord establishes His faithfulness.  He rules all Creation.  He controls the placement and movement of all the heavenly bodies.  The Sun rises consistently and predictably because of His faithfulness.  The movement of the planets is coordinated with Earth against the backdrop of the Zodiac to reveal the Lord's hand in human history.
Psalm 89:3-4
3  "I have made a covenant with My chosen;
I have sworn to David My servant,
4  I will establish your seed forever
And build up your throne to all generations."    [Selah].
The Lord made the Davidic Covenant with David.  The Covenant established the rule of the seed of David forever and the magnification of his Throne to all generations.  The Lord Jesus Christ will fulfill the Davidic Covenant when He ascends to the Throne of David in the Millennium.
Psalm 89:5
The heavens will praise Your wonders, O LORD;
Your faithfulness also in the assembly of the holy ones.
The heavens sing praises of the wonders of the Lord, their Creator.  The movement of the planets through the Zodiac communicates doctrinal truth daily that praises and glorifies the Creator.  The precision of the movement of the heavenly bodies is a testimony of the faithfulness of the Lord, who controls them.  The "holy ones" are the angels, who see and understand all this.
Psalm 89:8
O LORD God of the Armies, who is like You, O mighty LORD?
Your faithfulness surrounds You.
The Lord is the Commander-in-Chief of all the armies of Elect Angels and Israel.  He is faithful to all who serve Him.
Psalm 89:9
You rule the swelling of the sea;
When its waves rise, You still them.
The Lord rules the sea.  He controls the tides.  He makes the waves on the ocean, and He makes them calm.
Psalm 89:10
You Yourself crushed Rahab like one who is slain;
You scattered Your enemies with Your mighty arm.
Rahab is the poetical name of Egypt (Psa 87:4; Isa 51:9).  From the Hebrew it signifies violence of a monster (e. g. a crocodile or dragon) and insolence.  The Lord destroyed Egypt to free Israel, and He scatters all the enemies of Israel.
Psalm 89:11
The heavens are Yours, the Earth also is Yours;
The world and all it contains, You have founded them.
The heavens and the Earth belong to the Lord, as well as the world and all that is in it.  He created them.
Psalm 89:14
Righteousness and Justice are the foundation of Your throne;
Gracious Love and doctrine (truth) are before Your presence.
The Lord rules from His Throne in Heaven with absolute Righteousness and perfect Justice.  His Righteousness and Justice are the standards of His Integrity, which is never compromised.  From His Integrity comes His Gracious Love and doctrine (truth).  His Gracious Love is before Him in His relationship with all others.  The standards of His Integrity (also known as Holiness) correspond to the three axes:
  1. X-axis Righteousness, doctrine
  2. Y-axis Gracious Love
  3. Z-axis Justice
The Lord loved us in Eternity past.  His Gracious Love is a function of Divine Integrity.  His solutions can never compromise His Integrity.  His Gracious Love and Doctrine, which are before Him are in the X-Y plane (Gracious Love and Doctrine).  The X-Y Plane is the Stage of Life.  His Love (Y-axis) never compromises His Righteousness and Doctrine (X-axis).
Psalm 89:36
36  "His line shall endure forever,
And his throne as the Sun before Me.
37  Like the Moon, it shall be established forever,
And the witness in the sky is faithful."  [Selah].
According to the Davidic Covenant, the line of David will never be cut off.  To accomplish this required the Virgin Birth of Jesus Christ, descended from the ruling Tribe of Judah.  Jesus Christ will sit on the Throne of David forever.  Just as the Sun comes up every day, this Covenant will not fail.  The Sun symbolizes the King, and the Moon symbolizes His Bride (the Church and Client Nation Israel).  The Moon in the sky is a faithful witness that the Lord will keep His unconditional Covenant with David.  The Sun symbolizes the King and the Moon his Royal Family (the Church) and Client Nation Israel on Earth in the Millennium.

The Most High

Names for sovereignty given to the Lord are Most High and Almighty.  The Almighty appeared to Abraham and confirmed the Abrahamic Covenant (Gen 17:1).   Almighty is the Hebrew yD^v^ (Shaddai), which means almighty, sovereign; from Arabic tadyun, breast; connected with the Akkadian, sadu, "mountain."  The mountains symbolize female breasts.  God Almighty is the omnipotent One over all, who comforts His children like a mother comforts her child on her breast.  God comforts and provides security for the believer just as the mother does for the child.

The Lord is also known as the Most High (Psa 7:17; 9:2; 92:1).  He is called the "Most High over all the Earth" (Psa 83:18).

Psalm 47:2-4
2 For the LORD Most High is to be feared,
A great King over all the Earth.
3  He subdued peoples under us
And nations under our feet.
4  He chose our inheritance for us,
The pride of Jacob, whom He loves. [Selah].
The Lord as the Sovereign God has power over all the Earth even though He is currently allowing Satan to rule the world.  He is the King who will rule in the Millennium.  He is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armies of Israel who defeated the enemies of Israel.  This Psalm celebrates  Jehoshaphat's victory over the surrounding nations.  The victory, which was without a conflict, was the victory of the Lord.

The Lord, as the chief executor, of the Design of the Father, is also the One who chose the inheritance for the nation of Israel and the Tribes.  Even though Joshua determined the inheritance by casting lots for the tribes (Josh 18:10), it was actually the Lord who provided the inheritance based upon the predetermined Design of the Father.  Everything in God's Design is deterministic.  It is not left to chance.

When the Angel Gabriel came to Mary to announce her pregnancy, He said:

Luke 1:32
He (the Christ child) will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David;
Jesus Christ as the Son of the Most High (God the Father) would ascend to the Throne of David as the Sovereign over all the Earth.

The Lord Jesus Christ has the Sovereign power and authority to Judge people to send them to Heaven or Hell (Luk 12:4, 5).  Whereas kings may execute people, they have no power over where the soul goes.  At the Great White Throne the Lord Jesus Christ will Judge all unbelievers and send them to the Lake of Fire (Rev 20:11-15).

Christ's Sovereign Power

After the Resurrection the Father promoted Jesus Christ and seated Him on the Throne of God as Sovereign executor over all Creation.  The Lord as the second person of the Trinity had held that position before as God the Son.  However, now the Lord Jesus Christ, who is perfect humanity and undiminished Deity in Hypostatic Union, was seated on the Throne of God.

Ephesians 1:20
which (Sovereign power) He (the Father) put into operation by means of Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places,
For an explanation of "Sovereign power" see the explanation of the previous verse (ref. Eph 1:19).  The Sovereign power of God is available to the Church Age Believer (CAB) through the Divine Dynasphere.  The Lord Jesus Christ in Resurrection Body sits on God's Throne as the Sovereign executor over all Creation, including the Church (Eph 1:22).  The God-man sitting on the Throne is King of kings and Lord of Lords, the bright Morning Star.  He is the High Priest of the Church, which is being called out as His Royal Family.  He was the first member of the Church to receive a Resurrection Body.  Church Age Believers will receive their Resurrection bodies at the Rapture.

The purpose of CABs on the Earth is to follow the example of Jesus Christ in living the unique Spiritual life of all human history.  The Resurrection of Christ is the basis for this unique Spiritual Life (1 Cor 15:20; Rom 6:5; 1 Pet 1:3, 4; 3:21, 22).  Christ is the reason the Church Age exists.  He is the reason that billions of CABs are being called out to demonstrate the power of God through the Divine Dynasphere and the unique Spiritual life that Christ ordained.  Through giving the most to the least God demonstrates His Grace in all Creation (Rom 9:23).  Through justifying mankind on the basis of the work of Christ on the Cross, God is able to demonstrate His Righteousness to all (Rom 3:25, 26).  By making His Sovereign power available to the CAB to defeat Satan, God is vindicated in His Judgment of Satan (Rom 3:4).

Ephesians 1:21
Above all command, authority, power, and might; and every title that is given, not only in this age, but also in the one to come.
The Lord Jesus Christ in Resurrection Body on the Throne of God is Sovereign over all Creation.  "All command, authority, power, and might" refer to angelic authorities corresponding to the hierarchy in Col 1:16.  The Greek words are:
  1. ajrchv (arche) = command; angelic Commander
  2. ejxousiva (exousia) = authority
  3. duvnami" (dunamis) = power (2 Thess 1:7)
  4. kuriovth" (kuriotes) = might, power; angelic power
Three of the four words are the same in both Colossians 1:16 and Ephesians 1:21.  The words that are different are "Thrones" (Col 1:16) and "power" (Eph 1:21).  Both verses describe the angelic hierarchy.  The Lord Jesus Christ was promoted above all angelic authority.

The Lord Jesus Christ is higher than any angelic authorities in this age, the Church Age," or in the one to come, the Millennium.

Ephesians 6:10 Endowed Power
Finally, become strong in the Lord, even by the Sovereign power from His might.
The power of the Lord Jesus Christ in His exalted position on the Throne of God is available to the Church Age Believer through the Divine Dynasphere.  The power is called "the Sovereign power from His might."  "Sovereign power" is the Greek kravto" (kratos), which means Sovereign or supreme power,  and "might" is the Greek ijscuv", (ischus), which  means strength, might, power (ref. Eph 1:19).   The point is that all of the power of God is available to the Church Age Believer to execute the Spiritual life.

The Sovereign power of God is available to the believer to execute the Spiritual life, not to play God.  Satan's problem with being the most powerful angel was that he wanted to be God.  The power to live the Christian life includes payment for sins, a new Spiritual life, the filling of the Holy Spirit, spiritual gifts, and an inheritance.  The power is in every believer's life whether he realizes it or not.  God is faithful regardless of whether the believer is.  The power does not include the ability to perform miracles or kick others around.  It is the power to live the Spiritual life in Grace.

Stepping into the Divine Dynasphere is as simple as confessing one's sins (1 Jn 1:9).  Recognizing God's Grace, however, requires knowledge of Bible Doctrine.  The Holy Spirit acts as a tutor and counselor for the believer who is filled with the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit reveals the power of God in the life of the believer.  The Holy Spirit is the personal guide to reveal the path of the Spiritual life.   Regardless of the level of maturity, God's Design is operational.  His Grace continues regardless of the believer's status.  However, carnality will result in Divine punishment.

Evidence of the Sovereign power in the Christian life includes power over the Old Sin Nature, protection from the Cosmic System, Spiritual and Temporal freedom, Love, Light, and Happiness.  The numbers in a person's life all add up, along with the colors.  The Stage of Life reveals Divine Design.  The weather and the positions of the planets overhead also bear witness of the Sovereign power in a person's life.  Logistical Grace and Divine protection are also evidence of the Sovereign power.  The Sovereign power of God is poured into the believer's life whether he knows it or not.

1 Timothy 6:15
which (Appearing) He (the Father) will show forth at their own strategic times (Rapture and Second Advent) the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords
After the Lord Jesus Christ paid for the sins of the world and was resurrected, the Father promoted Him to "King of kings and Lord of lords."  As King, He will rule in the Millennium from the Throne of David over all the kings of the Earth (Rev 1:5).  As Lord, He is Deity over all other leaders of angelic orders or human ecumenical orders.

The Unique God

1 Timothy 1:17
Now to the Eternal Sovereign, immortal, invisible, the unique God, be honor and glory forever and ever.  Amen.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the Eternal Sovereign over all Creation.  He will be Sovereign forever.  He is immortal.  In His Resurrection Body, He will live forever.  To us He is invisible.  We will not see Him until the Rapture.  As the God-man in Hypostatic Union, He is the unique God.  He is the second person of the Trinity as He always was, but He is also perfect humanity.  He is the unique One as God.
Revelation 1:6
and He (the Lord Jesus Christ) has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father to Him be glory and Sovereignty forever and ever.  Amen.
The Lord Jesus Christ has ordained Church Age Believers (CABs) to be a kingdom and priests.  The kingdom, which is the Temporal side, refers to the Royal Family.  And "priests," which is the Spiritual side, refers to the Priesthood (the Church).  In the Church Age, every believer is both a member of the Royal Family and a Priest.  To the Lord Jesus Christ belongs glory and Sovereignty forever.
Revelation 1:8
"I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty."
Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, corresponding to the beginning and the end.  The Lord Jesus Christ says that He is the beginning and the end.  He is the beginning of Creation since all Creation has its origin with Him.  And He is "the end," who will destroy the current Universe and send unbelievers to the Lake of Fire with the devil and his angels.

This is a quote from Isaiah.

Isaiah 41:4
Who has wrought and executed it?
He who calls the generations from the beginning,  "I, the Lord, am the first, and with the last. I am He."
The Lord Jesus Christ is the One who calls the generations of history into being.  He was in existence before the Creation of the Universe.  He is currently in existence, and He will return at the Second Advent to rule on the Earth.  He is "the Almighty," a title for His Sovereignty over all Creation.

God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ will be praised and declared Sovereign at the Rapture.

Revelation 5:13 The Rapture
And every creature which is in heaven and on the Earth and under the Earth and on the sea, and all those in them, I heard saying,
"To Him who sits on the throne (God), and to the Lamb (Christ), blessing and honor and glory and Sovereignty forever and ever."
This verse is the scene of the Rapture (Phil 2:10-11).  "Creature" refers to created beings, including people and angels. The people "on the Earth" are the Rapture generation.  The categories of creatures are:
  1. Every creature in heaven believers and angels
  2. On Earth and sea Church on Earth at Rapture
  3. Under the Earth and in the sea dead in Christ
The Rapture will bring praise to God and the Lamb (Christ).  At the Rapture "every knee will bow" to the Lord Jesus Christ because of His new title (Phil 2:9-10; 1 Tim 6:15; Rev 19:16), and every tongue will acknowledge Him as Lord (Phil 2:11).  The new title of Jesus Christ is "King of kings and Lord of lords.  He will be King of kings at the Second Advent and Lord of lords at the Rapture.  All believers and angels will praise God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ (the Lamb).  This is a great demonstration of the Sovereignty of God the Father bestowed upon the Son, who sits on His Throne.

Lord

The Son of God is called the Lord Jesus Christ in the New Testament.  Lord is the Greek kurios, which is translated Lord, and refers to His Deity.  Jesus is the Greek  jIhsou'''" (Iesous), from the Hebrew J^Wvy@ (Jeshua), a later form for the Hebrew J^Wvwh)y+ (Joshua), which means the 'Lord is Salvation.'  Jesus is the name for our Lord's humanity.  And Christ, which means anointed, refers to the Messiah, King, High Priest, and Prophet.  The Lord Jesus Christ is perfect humanity and undiminished Deity combined in Hypostatic Union.  The two natures, Divine and human, are inseparably united without loss or transfer of attributes.  Thus, the God-man is both God and man.  He is not two people, but one unique personality.

Lord is also the translation of the Hebrew tetragrammaton, JHWH, which has been transliterated Jehovah and Yaweh.  JHWH  is derived from the verb "to be" and means the self-existent One.  It designates a single member of the Godhead and may apply to the Father, Son, or Holy Spirit.  However, it generally applies to the Son as the revealed member of the Godhead and the Word.   So, the name Lord applied to Jesus Christ refers to the second person of the Trinity just as in the Old Testament.  However, Jesus Christ differs from the Lord of the Old Testament in that He has taken the human nature and become the God-man.

All of the attributes of Deity are applied to Jesus Christ as Lord.  He has all the attributes of God.  However, He is also perfect humanity.  It is important to know Jesus Christ as Lord, but we do not have fellowship with the Lord separate from Jesus.  Our fellowship is with one person, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is both God and man in one unique person.

1 Corinthians 12:3
Therefore I want you to understand, that no one speaking by the Spirit of God says, "Cursed is Jesus"; and no one can say, "Jesus is Lord," except through the agency of the Holy Spirit.
No one who is speaking by the Holy Spirit curses Jesus.  However, demons curse Him in His humanity.  They deny the existence of Jesus as the incarnate Son of God.  And no one can call Jesus Lord except through the Holy Spirit.  Calling Jesus Lord is recognition of His Deity and His Divine Authority.  The believer who is filled with the Holy Spirit understands that he is under the Divine Authority of the Lord Jesus Christ.

At Salvation the believer recognizes Jesus Christ as Savior.  Later, when he learns more doctrine, he will be able to recognize Jesus Christ as Lord.  Those who reject Jesus Christ as Lord after Salvation have rejected His Authority.

Jesus Christ as Lord is the Sovereign Executor over all Creation (Matt 11:27; Eph 1:22, 23; Phil 3:21).  The Father and the Son have an exclusive knowledge of each other as fellow members of the Godhead (Jn 10:15).  The Son reveals the Father (Jn 14:9; 1 Jn 2:22-23).  The Son existed eternally with the Father (Jn 1:1-2; 8:58; 17:5).  The Son is the Creator of all things (Jn 1:3, 10; Col 1:16; Heb 1:10-12).  The Lord Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath (Matt 12:8).  He has the authority to decide what can be done on the Sabbath.  He has the power to forgive sin (Lk 5:24).  This is a function of Deity.  He knows all things (Jn 21:17).  He is all powerful (1 Tim 6:15; Rev 1:6, 8).  The Son is honored as the Father is honored (Jn 5:23).

Jesus Christ as Lord has the attributes of God:

  1. Eternal Life (John 1:4; 5:26; 10:10, 28; 14:6; 17:2; 20:31; Heb. 7:16; 1 Jn 2:25; 5:11)
  2. Holiness (Luke 1:35; John 6:69; Heb. 7:26)
  3. Love (John 13:1, 34; 15:9, 10, 13, 14; 1 Jn 3:16)
  4. Power to raise the dead (Jn 5:21, 28, 29; 11:25)
  5. Evaluator of believers (Rom 14:10; 2 Cor 5:10)
  6. Judge of the world (Jn 5:22; Rev 20:11-12).
Jesus as Lord is Deity.  He is God (Col 1:19).  But He is also perfect humanity glorified in a Resurrection Body.  Every bit God and every bit humanity, He is the unique person of all existence.  He performs every function of God without compromising His Deity or His humanity.  He is the perfect Mediator between God and man (1 Tim 2:5).  Although He is God, He has suffered all things as a man (Heb 2:18; 5:8).  Thus, He is able to reconcile mankind to God (2 Cor 5:18, 19; Col 1:19-22).  Therefore, man is able to have fellowship with God through the Lord Jesus Christ and walk in the Light of his glorious presence (Col 1:22; 1 Jn 1:7).

High Priest

The Lord Jesus Christ is Head, or High Priest, of the Church.  After being rejected by Israel, Jesus Christ arrived in Heaven and was promoted to "King of kings and Lord of lords."  But He was without a royal family.  The Church was called out to be His Royal Family.  At the moment of Salvation, every believer in the Church Age is Baptized with the Holy Spirit, whereby he is entered into union with Christ.  He is in union with Christ, the King, and becomes a member of his Royal Family.  In the Millennium, Church Age Believers will rule and reign with Christ.  The Baptism of the Holy Spirit also gives every Church Age Believer the Holy Spirit and makes him a priest.  So, Church Age Believers are both kings and priests, like the Lord Jesus Christ, who is both King and High Priest.
Ephesians 1:22-23
22  And He (the Father) put all things in subjection under His (Christ's) feet, and He gave Him the head over all things to the Church,
23  which is His body, the fulness of Him who Himself fills all in the sphere of all.
When the Lord Jesus Christ arrived in Heaven after the Resurrection, God the Father promoted Him to be the Sovereign Executor of all things and made Him the head of the Church.  The Church is also called the Body of Christ.  The Church is symbolized by a human body (1 Cor 12:27; Col 1:18).

False Spirituality

Counterattacks to the Divine Authority of Christ the High Priest of the Church come from false spirituality.

Colossians 2:18 False Spirituality
Let no one deprive you of your reward, taking delight in mortification and the worship of angels, taking his stand on visions which he has seen, without basis, inflated with arrogance under the influence of the thinking of his Old Sin Nature.
Church Age Believers who use false spirituality will lose the Eternal rewards that are available to winner believers.  The first system of false spirituality is "taking delight in mortification and the worship of angels."  Mortification is defined as subjection of the passions and appetites, by penance, absistence, or painful severities inflicted on the body.  Worship of angels includes demonism and praying to elect angels.

The next system of false spirituality is "taking his stand on visions which he has seen."  Rather than using Bible Doctrine, dreams and visions become the basis for false teaching.   Visions are the person's claim to fame.

The third system of false spirituality is "inflated with arrogance under the influence of the thinking of his Old Sin Nature."  This refers to illusions, which have no rational basis.  Illusions of arrogance are motivated by the false conceptions and illicit desires of the Old Sin Nature.

Colossians 2:19 Rejection of Christ's Authority
And not holding fast to the Head, from Whom the entire body through the joints and ligaments, being supplied and united, grows with Divine growth from God.
Those who engage in false spirituality have rejected the Divine Authority of Christ, who is Head of the Church.  The Church is symbolized by a body.  Those involved in false spirituality are not holding fast to the Head (Christ).  As believer-priests they are not executing the Spiritual life per the example of Jesus Christ in Hypostatic Union.  The entire body connected to the Head through the joints and ligaments, is supplied and united.   The joints and ligaments symbolize pastor-teachers, who feed the flock.  Christ, the Head, has authority over pastors, and the pastors have authority over the local congregations.  Consequently, the Body of Christ grows with Divine growth from God.

Human Body of the High Priest

Hebrews 2:17
For this reason, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.
The Lord Jesus Christ as High Priest had to be made a man, not an angel, in order to represent man before God.  The High Priest of Israel was the primary representative of the people to God.  He offered sacrifices for the sins of the people on the Day of Atonement, and he served as the chief judge.  The Lord Jesus Christ as High Priest offered Himself as a sacrifice for sins to propitiate God the Father.  Propitiation means satisfaction of God, including His Righteousness and Justice.  Since Jesus Christ was Deity as well as perfect humanity, He could satisfy all the requirements of God.
Hebrews 4:14 Great High Priest
Therefore, since we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our acknowledgement.
Jesus Christ is the great High Priest of the Church.  He has ascended through the heavens on our behalf.  Therefore, we should hold fast our acknowledgment that Jesus is seated in Heaven on our behalf.
Hebrews 4:15
For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet apart from sin.
Jesus Christ was a man who was tempted in all things like us.  However, He never sinned.
Hebrews 4:16 Throne of Grace
Let us therefore come boldly to the Throne of Grace, that we may receive mercy and find Grace to help in time of need.
Since Jesus Christ is seated on the Throne of God as our High Priest, we should go before the Throne boldly to receive Grace.  Believer-priests in the Church need the Lord's help to live the Spiritual life.  Because of weaknesses and problems that arise, we need the help of our High Priest.  The Lord Jesus Christ, our High Priest, is in a position to help us.

Coming to the Throne of Grace corresponds to the Altar of Incense before the Ark of the Covenant and Mercy Seat in the Tabernacle.  The Altar of Incense symbolizes the prayer life, and the Mercy Seat symbolizes the Throne of God in Heaven.  As believer-priests we come to the Throne of Grace in two ways, Faith-Rest and prayer.  In Faith-Rest, we leave our problems in God's hands.  In prayer, we pray to the Father in the name of the Son.   Jesus Christ, as our High Priest, will intercede for us before the Father.

Apostle High Priest

Jesus Christ is called the Apostle-High Priest.

Hebrews 3:1 Jesus the Apostle-High Priest
For this reason, Holy brethren, partners in the Heavenly calling, consider the Apostle-High Priest of our acknowledgement (professed doctrine), Jesus.
"Holy brethren" this is addressed to saints of the Family of God (the Church).

"Partners in the Heavenly calling" emphasizes the believer's relationship with God.

  1. We are partners, or associates, with God.
  2. We were called to Salvation.
  3. We are called into God's Plan for our lives (Jn 10:10; Rom 9:11; 1 Thess 2:12).
Christianity is different from religion.  Christians are holy, while religion seeks to be holy.  Christians have a relationship with God through Christ, while religion seeks to reach God.  Christianity is by Grace, while religion is through human works.

"Heavenly calling" refers to the purpose of the believer's relationship with God.  Christians are called to:

  1. Salvation (Rom 8:24; 1 Tim 6:12; 2 Tim 2:10; 1 Thess 5:8)
  2. Spiritual Maturity (Matt 5:48; Eph 4:13; Col 1:28; Heb 6:1)
  3. The Priesthood in the Church (Col 3:15-16; Heb 12:22-23; 1 Pet 2:9; 4:10-11; Rev 1:6)
  4. Members of the local church (Pastor, Deacon, Servant) (1 Ti 3:1-13; Heb 10:25)
  5. Outside local church (evangelist, missionary, teacher) (Matt 28:19-20; Acts 1:8; Eph 4:11; 2 Ti 4:5)
  6. Salt of the nation (freedom fighter, military, civilian, business) (Matt 5:13; 1 Cor 7:17-24; 1 Cor 10:31; Col 3:17; 2 Tim 4:7; 1 Pet 5:10)
  7. Witnesses in Satan's Appeal Trial (Job 1:9, 11; 2:5; Zech 3:1; Luke 22:31; Eph 4:27; 1 Pet 5:8; Rev 12:10)
  8. Resurrection (Rom 8:29; Col 1:27)
  9. A new life (Matt 10:39; 16:25; Jn 12:25; Rom 6:4; 7:6; 12:2; 2 Cor 5:17; Eph 4:24; Phil 3:7-21; Col 3:10).
"Apostle-High Priest" is an hendiadys, which in the Greek is denoted by two words joined by "and" with a single definite article before them.  Since the two words refer to the same thing, the best way to translate them is with a dash for the "and."  Thus, "Apostle-High Priest" is a single title, not two.

The next problem is understanding the meaning of Apostle in this context.  Apostle in the Greek was used for a naval expedition with its commander; an ambassador or messenger.  The Apostles to the Church held the highest authority over other pastors and congregations.   Here Jesus Christ is the Apostle-High Priest, the chief High Priest of the Church.  There were 83 High Priests of Israel, who were descended from the Tribe of Levi.  Jesus Christ, the Chief High Priest, was from the Tribe of Judah and the High Priest of the Church.  The Church is the highest Priesthood and the only Priesthood in the Eternal State.  Jesus Christ is Chief High Priest of the highest priests (the Church).  As Chief High Priest, Jesus Christ is higher than the priests in the Church and the Levitical High Priests and priests.

"High Priest" refers to Jesus Christ as High Priest of the priests in the Church.  A priest represents himself and others before God.  A High Priest is the highest authority over the priests.

"Jesus" refers to the humanity of Christ in Hypostatic Union to emphasize His relationship to the Church, which is composed of humans.  Jesus is "the Apostle-High Priest of our acknowledgement."  "Acknowledgement" refers to the doctrine which is professed by the Church.

Order of Melchizedek

Melchizedek was the King of Salem, who blessed Abraham after his victory over Chedorlaomer and to whom Abraham gave a tithe.  Melchizedek was also a priest of God Most High.  He was both a king and a priest.

High priests are appointed by God, just as pastors (Heb 5:4).  Similarly, Jesus Christ did not assume for Himself the office of High Priest, but He was born a man in order to be a High Priest (Heb 5:5).  His destiny was to be a High Priest like Melchizedek (Heb 5:6, Psa 110:4).

Hebrews 5:9-10
9  And after coming to completion (on the Cross), He (Christ) became to all who obey Him the source of Eternal Salvation,
10  being designated by God as a High Priest according to the order of Melchizedek.
Jesus Christ fulfilled His destiny (His Heavenly calling).  This is the Greek teleiovw (teleioo), which means coming to completion or being fulfilled.  Jesus Christ fulfilled His Earthly mission, which was to go to the Cross and pay for the sins of the world.  With sins paid for the door is open to receive Eternal Salvation by faith alone in Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ was designated by God the Father as a High Priest like Melchizedek, who was both the king and a priest.  The order of Melchizedek was different from the Levitical priests, who were descended from Levi.  Melchizedek was a Gentile king.  His priesthood was not based upon genealogy (Heb 7:3).  Jesus Christ was not qualified to be a Levitical priest because He was not descended from Levi.  He was descended from the Tribe of Judah, the ruling tribe (Heb 7:14).  He was appointed High Priest of a new priesthood designated by God the Father.Tabernacle Plan

Hebrews 6:19 Anchor of the Soul
Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both secure and reliable, and which enters in (the Holy of Holies) inside the veil,
The believer's hope is his confidence in the Spiritual life that leads to the Resurrection and joining the Lord Jesus Christ in Heaven.  This is the hope set before us (Heb 6:18).   Christ is our hope (Col 1:27).  This hope is like an upside down anchor of the soul.  The anchor is symbolically dropped inside the Holy of Holies of the Tabernacle behind the veil.  However, the real Holy of Holies is Heaven itself.
Hebrews 6:20
where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.
Jesus has already entered the true Holy of Holies in Heaven.  Just as the High Priest entered the Holy of Holies once a year on the Day of Atonement, Jesus has entered into Heaven itself as the High Priest of the Church.  He is a priest forever like the order of Melchizedek, who was both a king and a priest.  Jesus is our forerunner.  He is the first to receive a Resurrection Body, and we will be next.

The anchor as a forerunner corresponds to the analogy of sailors taking the anchor out in a small boat ahead of the ship to drop the anchor in a place that was shallow enough to secure the anchor.   The upside down anchor of the soul is symbolized by Jesus Christ, our High Priest.  The upside down anchor with its attached rope symbolizes our Z-axis alignment, or hope.  It symbolizes Z-axis alignment with Jesus Christ, who is in Heaven in a Resurrection Body.  When we are anchored in Jesus Christ, we are also in fellowship with Him.

Hebrews 7:26
For it was also fitting for us to have such a High Priest, holy, impeccable, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens;
The Church has a unique High Priest who is pure and holy and who has been exalted above the heavens.  He is seated at the right hand of the Father.
Hebrews 7:27
who does not need daily, like those High Priests (Levitical priests), to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He (Jesus) accomplished once and for all when He offered up Himself.
Unlike the Levitical priests who offered daily sacrifices for sins, the sacrifice of Jesus only needed to be offered once. Christ's offering of Himself on the Cross was entirely efficacious for all time.
Hebrews 7:28
For the Law appoints men as High Priests who have weakness, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints the Son, who has been brought to completion, forever.
The Law appointed High Priests who had human weaknesses.  They had Old Sin Natures and didn't even need to be believers.  However, the appointment of the Son, Jesus Christ, came directly from the Father by means of an unconditional oath.  The work of Jesus Christ was brought to completion when He finished paying for the sins of the world on the Cross.  Then He died and was resurrrected and promoted to High Priest forever.  The appointments of the Levitical priests ended at death, but the appointment of Jesus Christ as High Priest lasts forever.   The Levitical priesthood will exist in the Millennium, but in the Eternal State the Church will be the only priesthood.

Priesthood of the Church

The Priesthood of the Church refers to the believer-priests, who serve God Spiritually.  A priest is one who represents himself or others before God.  In the Church Age every believer is a priest and a member of the priesthood (1 Pet. 2:5, 9; Rev. 1:6; 5:10).  Although the priesthood is described as "holy" and "royal," its function is Spiritual.  The ministry of the Church Age believer-priest is based on the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ, the High Priest.  The ministry of the priesthood of the believer encompasses every aspect of the Spiritual life (Rom 12:9-12) and includes:
  1. Love (Deut 10:12; Matt 22:37; Eph 5:2; Heb 10:24; Jas 2:8)
  2. Worship (Matt 4:10; Phil 3:3) and fellowship in the Word (teaching) (Matt 18:20; Heb 10:25)
  3. Evangelism (Rom 15:16; 2 Cor 2:14-16)
  4. Prayer (Eph 6:18; 1 Thess 5:17)
  5. Praise (Heb 2:12; 13:15; Jas 5:13)
  6. Thanksgiving (Eph 5:20; 1 Thess 5:18; Heb 13:15)
  7. Singing (Rom 15:9; 1 Cor 14:15; Eph 5:19; Col 3:16)
  8. Music (Psa 68:25; 1 Chron 25:1-6; Lk 15:25; Eph 5:19).
  9. Doing good (Gal 6:10; Eph 2:10; Heb 10:24; 13:16, 21).
  10. Giving (1 Chron 29:9; Rom 12:13; Phil 4:18; Heb 13:16).
  11. Serving (Mk 10:43-44; Rom 1:9; 12:1; 2 Tim 1:3; Heb 9:14; 12:28)
  12. Ambassadorship (2 Cor 5:20; Eph 6:20)
  13. Helping (Rom 12:8; 1 Cor 12:28)
  14. Refreshment, encouragement, hospitality, comfort (Rom 12:13; 15:32; 2 Tim 1:16; Philem 7; Heb 13:2)
  15. Arts and crafts (Ex 31:1-6; 1 Chron 28:11-21; 29:5)
  16. Dance (Ex 15:20; 2 Sa 6:14; Psa 30:11; 149:3; 150:4; Eccl 3:4; Jer 31:4, 13; Matt 11:17; Luk 7:32)
The function of the priesthood is a Spiritual relationship with God the Father on the basis of our High Priest, the Lord Jesus Christ, and His standing before God (Heb 10:21-22).   The ministry of the priesthood includes "not only a service to God and fellow believers, but to all men everywhere."1

The Priesthood of the Church is called out to render Spiritual service to God as royal priests of the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom 9:23-26; 12:1; Eph 1:3-6; 1 Thess 2:12; 2 Tim 1:9; Heb 2:10-12; 3:1; 1 Pt 2:5, 9; 5:10; 2 Pt 1:3; Rev. 1:6; 5:10).  Every Church Age believer becomes a priest at Salvation.  There is no basis for any other office of priest in the Church e.g. calling pastors priests.  The function of the priesthood requires the filling of the Holy Spirit.  Effective priestly function also requires:

  1. Sanctification (Psa 24:3-4; 2 Cor 7:1; 1 Pet 1:15-16; 2:5)
  2. Grace orientation (Col 4:6; Heb 4:16; 12:15; 1 Pet 3:7)
  3. Doctrinal orientation (Matt 17:20; 21:21-22; 2 Cor 5:7; Jas 1:6; 1 Pet 2:1)
  4. Respect for divine protocol and authority (Ex 30:19-21; Lev 10:8-10; Psa 5:7; 115:11, 13; Matt 6:9-13; 20:23; Luk 18:13; Heb 12:28)
  5. Enlightenment (Matt 20:22; Acts 26:18; Rom 8:26; Eph 1:18; 1 Pet 2:9)
  6. Love for God and all mankind (Matt 6:14-15; Eph 5:2; 1 Jn 4:11-12, 19).
The priesthood is symbolized by the Patriarchs, Levitical priests, the Altar of Incense in the Tabernacle, and the sign of Pisces.2  The priest offers himself as a sacrifice to God (Rom 12:1; 2 Cor 8:5).  God places the believer in the field of service (Eph 2:10).  Sacrifices of the priest include:
  1. Prayer, praise, thanksgiving (Heb 13:15)
  2. Doing good (Heb 13:16)
  3. Giving (2 Cor 8:5; Phil 4:18)
  4. Evangelism (2 Cor 2:14-15)
  5. Love (Jn 10:11; Eph 5:2; 2 Cor 12:15)
  6. Humility (Psa 34:18; 51:17)
  7. Preaching (2 Cor 2:14; 12:15; Phil 2:17)
  8. Service (Rom 6:16-22; 12:1; Heb 9:14; 1 Pet 4:10-11)
  9. Dying (Rom 8:36; 1 Cor 15:31; 2 Cor 4:10; 6:9)
  10. Death (2 Tim 4:6).

Abiding in the Power of Christ

The Lord Jesus Christ  is seated at the right hand of the Throne of God as the Sovereign executor over all Creation (Matt 28:18; Eph 1:2022; Phil 2:9-11; Col 2:10; Heb 12:2; 1 Pet 3:22).  He is King of kings and Lord of lords (1 Tim 6:15; Rev 19:16).  The power of Christ is the power of God because He is God.  It is the power over all Creation, over all the Universe.  However, more specifically, the power of Christ refers to the power of the Lord Jesus Christ in Hypostatic Union as the God-man.

Although the power of the second person of the Trinity existed in the Old Testament, the power of Christ began in the New Testament.  It began with the Virgin Birth (Matt 1:23, 25; Heb 1:5).  In the Gospel period, the power of Jesus Christ was demonstrated through His humanity in Hypostatic Union.  As the Savior, He was the Light of the world, and on the Cross His power was demonstrated in bearing the sins of the world.  In the Church Age He is the Sovereign ruler over all Creation and the High Priest of the Church.  In the Millennium, He will rule and reign from the Throne of David.  In the Eternal State, He will be the King forever and the High Priest of the Church.

The power of Christ is available to the believer who abides in fellowship with Him.  The Lord's commands are His enabling.  Keeping His commandments  assures fellowship with Him and Grace support from His power.  The Lord provides all the power needed to execute His commands and fulfill His purpose.

Philippians 4:13 Divine Dynasphere
I have strength to do all things in Him (the Father) who constantly empowers me.
"In Him" is locative of sphere, which means "in the sphere of Him (the Father)."  This refers to the Divine Dynasphere, which is produced by the Holy Spirit in the believer who is in fellowship with the Father.   Not only is the Father in the Divine Dynasphere, but so is the Lord Jesus Christ.  The power of God in the Divine Dynasphere includes the power of Christ and the Holy Spirit.  The believer in the Divine Dynasphere is strengthened to do all things in the Spiritual life.  He is constantly empowered by God.

The power of Christ delivered Paul from the lion's mouth, which was a Satanic counterattack to end his life.

2 Timothy 4:17
But the Lord stood by me, and strengthened me, in order that through me the proclamation might be heralded in full measure, and all the Gentiles might hear; and I was drawn to His side out of the lion's mouth.
Even though Paul had no support from people, the Lord Jesus Christ stood with him as Nero attempted to put him to death.  "Strengthened" is the Greek ejndunamovw (endunamoo), meaning to empower, strengthen.  It meant to empower in Philippians 4:13.  Paul was strengthened to deliver the Gospel and the Mystery Doctrine of the Church to all the Gentiles.  The Lord drew Paul to His side out of the Lion's mouth, which was the power of Satan through Nero.  He had been previously delivered from the suffering of the lion's mouth at Antioch (Acts 13:14, 45, 50), Iconium (Acts 14:17, 19), and Lystra (Acts 14:820) (2 Tim 3:11), and also  Jerusalem (Acts 21:30-36).
2 Timothy 4:18 Dying Grace
The Lord Himself will rescue me from every evil deed and will preserve me for His heavenly kingdom; to Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
The power of Christ also delivered Paul through Dying Grace.

Spiritual Rapport

Philippians 4:6 Stop Worrying
Stop worrying about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God,
The believer should stop worrying about anything because worry is a sin.  If we are living God's life, He will solve our problems.  Put the problems in God's hands, and He will handle them.  Worry and anxiety are signs of failure in fellowship with God.
Philippians 4:7 Spiritual Rapport
and the Peace from God, which surpasses all understanding, will garrison your hearts and your minds in the sphere of Christ Jesus.
When problems are placed in God's hands, the believer can rest assured that He will handle them.  The Peace from God will garrison the believer's heart and mind.  Peace is the Greek eijrhvnh (eirene), which means peace, tranquility and harmony (John  14:27; 16:33; 20:19; Rom 8:6; 2 Cor 13:11; Col. 3:15; Gal 5:22) (Psa 29:11; Isa 26:3; 57:19-21; Jer 33:6).  The Peace, "which surpasses all understanding," is from the source of God.  This is fellowship with God in Spiritual Rapport.  The Peace from God is Spiritual, which is beyond the thinking of the soul.

The Peace that garrisons the heart and mind is in the Divine Dynasphere.  The heart is the feminine, subjective, right lobe of the soul.  Functions include:  Love, Light, Happiness, timing, imagination, creativity, understanding, wisdom, subjective thinking, and association with good and bad emotion.  God's Peace and protection covers the heart and protects its function from enemies (the world, the  flesh, and the devil).  The mind is the masculine, objective, left lobe of the soul.  Functions include:  Thinking, logic, mental attitude, Faith, rationality, and association with authority and legality.  God's Peace and protection covers the mentality and protects its function from enemies (the world, the flesh, and the devil).

God's Peace and protection sustains the believer priest in executing the Spiritual life, including Spiritual Warfare.  This is not a promise of instant healing, promotion, maturity, miracles, or defeat of enemies.  God's Grace will solve the believer's problems in due time (2 Cor 12:9-10; Gal 6:9).

However, there is more.  All of this powerful peace and protection from God is "in the sphere of Christ Jesus."   This is fellowship with Christ in Spiritual Rapport.  All the peace and power of God in the Divine Dynasphere in Spiritual Rapport includes the power of Christ in Harmonious Rapport.  The Spiritual life of the Church Age Believer is in the sphere of Christ.  Jesus Christ is the High Priest of the Church, which is the Body of Christ.  The Christian life is lived in fellowship with Christ.  All prayer is addressed to the Father in Christ's name.  The life of the Christian is bound up in Christ.

Power of the Resurrection

Philippians 3:10 Relationship with the Resurrected Christ
that I may get to know Him (Christ), and the power of His Resurrection, and the participation in His sufferings, having become like Him in His death;
Having reached Spiritual Maturity, Paul's desire is to get to know Christ, including His power, sufferings, and death.  "Get to know Him" is fellowship with Christ through the study of the Word.  "The power of His Resurrection" is not only the power of God that resurrected Christ, but also the power of the resurrected Christ.  The Lord Jesus Christ in Resurrection Body has all the power of God.  He is the most powerful person in existence.  After His Resurrection, He became King of kings and Lord of lords.
  1. The power of Christ's Resurrection makes Him Sovereign Ruler over all Creation (1 Tim 6:15; Heb 1:13).
  2. The resurrected Christ is the victor in the Angelic Conflict (Heb 10:12).
  3. The resurrected Christ is the Head of the Royal Family of God, High Priest of the Church, and the firstborn from the dead (Col 1:18).
Fellowship with Christ is not just knowledge and glory but also suffering.  "Participation in His sufferings" means the Christian who lives for Christ will also suffer for Him.  "Participation" is the Greek koinwniva (koinonia), which means association, fellowship,  participation.  Participation in Christ's sufferings includes fellowship with Him through the sufferings.  The believer who represents Christ on the Earth will share in His sufferings (Jn 15:18; 17:14; Acts 9:15-16; Rom 8:17; 2 Cor 1:5, 7; Col 1:24; 2 Tim 2:12; 1 Pet 4:13; 1 Jn 3:13).  Suffering comes from Divine punishment (Heb 12:6), the world, the flesh (OSN), and the devil.  Suffering is an opportunity to demonstrate the power of Christ to overcome the trials, tribulations, and exigencies of life.

"Having become like Him in His death" - this refers to Retroactive Positional Truth (Rom 6:3; Gal 2:20).  We died when Christ died, since our sins were Judged on the Cross.  The physical death of the believer is the death of the body of sin, which will be followed by the Resurrection (Phil 3:11 and Rom 8:17; 6:5-7; 2 Cor 4:17).

Philippians 3:11 Rewards at the Resurrection
If somehow (as an heir of God) I may attain my eternal inheritance at the point of the Exit-Resurrection from the dead.
The power of Christ's Resurrection for the believer means qualifying for the Eternal rewards and decorations of a winner believer.  Decorations, e.g. crowns, will be worn on the uniform of glory of the Resurrection Body.  The believer who truly believes in the Resurrection will advance to Spiritual Rapport to receive his inheritance at "the Exit-Resurrection from the dead" (the Rapture).  The rewards will be presented at the Evaluation Throne of Christ following the Rapture.

Citizens of Heaven

Philippians 3:20
For our citizenship is in Heaven, from which we also eagerly await for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;
"Citizenship" is the Greek polivteuma (politeuma), which means the rights and privileges of citizenship in a free state; or the corporate body of citizens resident in a foreign country.  It means being a foreigner in another country.  Philippi, the home of the Philippians, was in Macedonia, nine miles from the Aegean Sea.   Many Roman citizens lived in Philippi, including retirees.  Just as Rome was their homeland and Philippi their place of residence, so Paul is saying Heaven is the homeland of the CAB as Royal Family of God while Earth is the colony.

Every believe has citizenship from God in Heaven.  This includes the rights and privileges of citizenship which are related to God forever.  These rights give us the privilege of being Ambassadors (2 Cor 5:20; Eph 6:20).

Philippians 3:21 Glory of the Resurrection Body
who will change into new form the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His (Christ's) glory, according to the power that enabled Him also to bring into subjection all things to Himself.
At the Rapture the human body of the believer will be transformed into a glorious Resurrection Body, which will be like Christ's Resurrection Body.  The believer in his Resurrection Body will have the power of Christ.  He will have the power that enabled Christ to bring all things into subjection to Himself when He arose as King of kings and Lord of lords.  Thus, the power of Christ is also available to the believer in his Resurrection Body.

Power Against Demon Attack

When Paul experienced a demon attack, he prayed to God three times to take it away (2 Cor 12:7, 8).  However, the Lord rejected prayer as a Problem Solving Device.

2 Corinthians 12:9 Grace Orientation Solution to Demon Attack
Then He replied to me with results that continue, "My Grace is sufficient for you.  For you see, Power is brought to completion in weakness."  Most gladly, therefore, I will rather glory in my weaknesses that the power of Christ my reside in me.
The Lord explained to Paul that His Grace was sufficient for handling the demon.3  In order for a demon to attack a believer, the Lord Jesus Christ must personally allow it.  The Lord allowed the demon attack, and Paul must rely on Grace to remove it.

"Power" refers to Divine power, the power of God, the power of the Divine Dynasphere, and is defined as "the power of Christ" later in the verse (1 Cor 2:5; 2 Cor 4:7; 6:7; Eph 1:19; 3:7, 16; Phil 4:13; 2 Pet 1:3; Rev 19:1).  This is God's power in contrast to man's weakness and helplessness.

Paul was happy with the answer and understood.  Rather than remove the demon through prayer, Paul was content to glory in his weaknesses that the power of Christ might reside in him.  The power of Christ is available in Grace to solve our problems.  The power of Christ is the power of God.  Christ has the power to remove the demon (and more) at any time; but He also has the power to strengthen the believer through Grace, so the believer has the power to withstand the demon attack.

Keys of Heaven

While He was on Earth in the Hypostatic Union, Jesus Christ gave Peter the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Matthew 16:19 Keys of Heaven
I shall give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven; and whatsoever you shall bind on Earth, will have been bound in Heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose on Earth, will have been loosed in Heaven.
"The keys of the Kingdom of Heaven" are symbolic keys that give the possessor the power to open the door of Heaven.  The keys included the power to "bind on Earth."  "Whatsoever you shall bind on Earth" refers to those who reject the Gospel.  "Will have been bound in Heaven" refers to those left under bondage to sin after rejecting the Gospel.  Their sins will not be forgiven.

The keys had the power to loose on Earth.   "Loosed on earth" refers to the sins of those who believe the Gospel.  "Loosed in Heaven" refers to forgiveness of sins and freedom from bondage to sin after believing the Gospel (Matt 18:18; Jn 20:23).  Believers should also forgive (Matt 6:14; 7:2; 18:21-35; Mark 11:25; Eph 4:32; Col 3:13).

The keys of the Kingdom of Heaven refer to the power to evangelize.  When the believer gives someone the Gospel, the Gospel is the power to open or close the door of Heaven.  For the one who believes, the door of Heaven will be opened, and the door will be closed to the one who does not believe.  All believers have the power to evangelize, not just Peter.  However, only Christ can open the door of Salvation.

Power of Christ in Salvation

Paul proclaimed the Gospel to Jews and Gentiles.

1 Corinthians 1:23 Gospel
But we proclaim Christ crucified:  to the Jews, on the one hand, a stumbling-block; to the Gentiles, on the other hand, foolishness.
After hearing the Gospel, which is called "Christ crucified," the Jews rejected Jesus Christ and the Gentiles thought it foolishness.
1 Corinthians 1:24 Power of Christ in Salvation
But to those who are called, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ, the power of God and the wisdom of God.
"Those who are called" means those who heard the Gospel and received Salvation.  Those who received Salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, experienced the power of God and understood the wisdom of God.  Christ visits the believer with the power of God at Salvation.

Power in Assembly

Groups of believers who assemble may also have the power of Christ.

Matthew 18:20
For where two or three have assembled together in My (Christ's) name, there am I in the midst of them.
If believers in fellowship with Christ assemble together in Christ's name, then He is in fellowship with the group.  Thus, groups of two or more who assemble for Bible study, worship, or prayer will receive the power of Christ in their midst.  If the individuals in the group are in fellowship with Christ, then Christ joins them in Spirit.  Believers in a group who have reciprocal Love for Christ will also have their hearts knit together in Love for each other (Col 2:2).  The common focus of the Love for Christ unites the believers per the hymn, "Blest Be the Tie that Binds."

Paul wrote to the Corinthians to tell them what to do at the next church service regarding separation from the incestuous believer.

1 Corinthians 5:4 Next Church Service
When you are gathered together in the name of our Lord Jesus and in my (Paul's) spirit with the power of our Lord Jesus,
The believers in the Church of Corinth who assembled in the name of Christ would have the "power of our Lord Jesus."  Paul, who was not in attendance, would be with them in spirit.  This means Paul would be part of the extended congregation.

The Great Commission

Jesus sent His disciples out to evangelize the world.

Matthew 28:18-20 Great Commission
18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on Earth.  19  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
Jesus had been given all authority in Heaven and on Earth.  This means that as the God-man on Earth in Hypostatic Union, He was the Divine Authority over all Creation.  He held that responsibility as the second member of the Trinity in Heaven before He came to Earth and became a man.

Jesus sent His disciples out to evangelize the world, to baptize them, and teach them His commandments.  If they obeyed Him, He would be with them always, even to the end of the Jewish Age.  However, the Jewish Age was interrupted by the Church Age, and the last seven years of the Jewish Age are still left to be fulfilled in the Tribulation.  Those who obeyed the Great Commission had the power of Christ with them even during the period of the Hypostatic Union (Gospel Period).

Christ Speaking Through Believers

When Jesus sent His disciples out to witness, He warned them that they would be hauled before governors (prefects) and kings (Matt 10:18).  However, they were not to worry about what to say.

Matthew 10:19-20
19  But when they hand you over, do not worry about how or what you should say; for it will be given you in that hour what you should say.
20  For it is not you who are speaking, but the Spirit of your Father who is speaking through you.
The disciples were not to worry about what to say to governors or kings because the Holy Spirit would put the words in their mouths. They would not be the ones speaking, but the Spirit of the Father (the Holy Spirit) would be speaking through them.  The men under the power of the Holy Spirit would speak what the Spirit put in their thoughts.  The men would be speaking their own minds, but they would be inspired to speak what the Holy Spirit wanted.

The parallel passage in Luke (Lk 12:11-12) states that the Holy Spirit will teach the believer what to say.

Luke 12:12
for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.
The Holy Spirit teaches the believer through his human spirit what to say.  Both passages are describing the same thing.  In Matthew the Holy Spirit brings the words to mind, and in Luke the Holy Spirit teaches the believer what to say.

This is explained  yet again in Luke 21:12-15.  When the disciples are taken into custody, they are not to prepare to defend themselves.

Luke 21:14
So resolve in your hearts not to prepare beforehand to defend yourselves;
When they are dragged before governing officials, they are not to make preparations beforehand to defend themselves.
Luke 21:15
for I (Jesus) will give you eloquence and wisdom which those who are opposing you will not be able to resist or refute.
Here, Jesus promises to give the disciples eloquence and wisdom before the governing officials.  Note, this is Jesus speaking, but His agent, the Holy Spirit, will do the work.  The disciples will be given "eloquence and wisdom," which their opponents "will not be able to resist or refute."  Eloquence is a communication gift, and wisdom is the ability to understand profound knowledge.  Both are possible through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Paul also alluded to Christ speaking through him.

2 Corinthians 13:3 Christ Speaking Through Paul
since you are seeking verification that Christ is speaking through me, He who is not weak in relation to you (as you think I am), but is powerful in you.
Some of the Corinthian believers had become negative to Paul's ministry.  They were legalistic from listening to Judaizers and were looking for an opportunity to discredit Paul.  Paul said, "You are seeking verification that Christ is speaking through me."  However, the negative Corinthians were looking for an opportunity to prove that Christ was not speaking through Paul.  "Verification" is the Greek dokimhv (dokime), which means verification; proof by testing (Rom 5:4).  And "through me" is the preposition en + ego  in the instrumental of association.  Christ was speaking through Paul through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Then Paul pointed out that Christ was not weak in the Corinthian believers.  This subtle sarcasm is that the Corinthians who were opposing Paul had accused him of being weak in person but weighty in his letters (2 Cor 10:1, 10).  Paul pointed out that Christ was powerful in the Corinthian believers.  This refers to their experiential relationship with Christ that began at Salvation.

The power of Christ in Paul also included the authority of Apostle, which was the highest authority in the Church (2 Cor 13:10).  The Lord Jesus Christ gave Paul the gift of Apostle for the purpose of establishing churches.   The authority of Apostle included the power to deliver opponents over to Satan to administer the Sin Leading to Death (1 Cor 5:5; 1 Tim 1:20).  Although pastors do not have that authority, rejection of the grace message of the pastor leads to slavery to the Cosmic System where continued negative volition will result in the Sin Leading to Death.  The pastor will see the person die the Sin Leading to Death (Psa 37:34).

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References

1.  Chafer, L. S. (1993). Systematic theology. Originally published: Dallas, Tex. : Dallas Seminary Press, 1947-1948. (4:65). Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications. Vol 4, p. 65.
2.  Larry Wood.  Biblical Astrology, "Pisces," Sept. 30, 2011.
3.  Larry Wood.  "Dealing with Demons in Grace," Oct. 3, 2012.

Author:  Larry Wood,   Released - September 12, 2013 - Revised Nov. 16, 2013

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