Relationship with the Resurrected Redeemer
Rejection of the Redemption Solution
When we oppose God in such ways, how can He reach us to call us back into line? Since we are out of fellowship and insensitive to His wishes, He can't ask us to stop because we aren't listening. Therefore, He punishes us for the wrongdoing. His punishment is entirely just and fits our specific case.
The punishment we receive from God takes into consideration knowledge that is not available to us. For example, God knows our life purpose and the extent of our Spiritual advance. He knows how long we are allocated in this life. He knows our involvement with sin, the world, and the devil. He knows if we have fallen into temptation and been enslaved by the devil. He knows all the facts, and His punishment fits the situation.
Divine punishment must be understood in light of a Holy and Righteous God. To have a love relationship with God, we must be Holy and Righteous. That will only happen when we have our resurrection bodies and leave our Old Sin Natures behind. We will not reach sinless perfection in this life. So, we can look forward to Divine punishment.
Our Divine punishment is directed by the Lord Jesus Christ as our High Priest. He holds "the keys of death and Hades" (Rev 1:18). He has the authority to send people to death or Hell (Matt 10:28). He administers knocking at the door punishment (ref. Rev 3:20). He orders our punishment based upon the will of the Father, and the Holy Spirit performs the punishment. All the members of the Godhead coordinate our punishment. They do not work independently.
The Lord reprimands and punishes those He loves.
Revelation 3:19"Love" is the Greek filevw (phileo), which means to love with the greatest of intimacy – the enjoyment of harmonious rapport; used for personal love (which God never has for the unbeliever); love as a strong affect, a strong regard, to treat someone as one's own; love in a family. The Lord Jesus Christ as High Priest has intimate Love for believers in the Church, whom He reprimands (warning discipline) and punishes (intensive discipline).
Those whom I love I reprimand and I punish. Therefore, keep on being motivated and change your mind (thinking).
In the face of Divine punishment believers should "keep on being motivated." They should be motivated to be in fellowship with God, and they should be motivated by the love for Christ (2 Cor 5:14).
The believer who is being punished should "change his mind (thinking)." This is the Greek metanoevw (metanoeo), which means to change the mind. This refers to Rebound when necessary.
Divine punishment is a form of suffering. It is designed to hurt, whether it is directed at the body or the circumstances of life. However, there are many forms of suffering that are not Divine punishment. Divine Punishment also differs from testing in that testing is designed to verify, validate, prove, or test. Divine punishment is designed to judge, discipline, chastise, correct, or punish.
The Lord Jesus Christ as High Priest of the Church punished Jezebel in the Church of Thyatira.
Revelation 2:18"The Son of God" is going to pronounce Judgment on Jezebel in the Church of Thyatira. His eyes are "like a flame of fire." Eyes symbolize grace. He has fire in His eye, which refers to Fire Testing. And His feet "resemble burnished bronze." Bronze symbolizes Judgment, e.g. the Brazen Altar.
And to the messenger (pastor-teacher) of the church in Thyatira write: "The Son of God says these things, He who has eyes like a flame of fire, and whose feet resemble burnished bronze."
Revelation 2:20-23Thus, the Lord Jesus Christ ordered Jebel's children (followers) to be executed by the Sin Leading to Death. And Jezebel was to be thrown into a sick bed. The Lord analyzes the kidneys and the heart to determine what punishment or reward to give. Analyzing the kidneys and the heart is testing. The kidneys symbolize the emotion. Emotional Revolt of the Soul indicates failing the test from lack of doctrinal thinking. The heart is the location for love in the soul. Loss of love also indicates failing the test.
20 "But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray, so that they practice prostitution and eat things sacrificed to idols.
21 And I gave her a period of time in order to change her mind (Rebound); however, she does not want to change her mind (Rebound) out from her prostitution.
22 Behold, I will throw her into a sick bed, and those committing adultery with her into great tribulation (severe suffering) unless they change their minds from her deeds.
23 And I will execute her children (followers) by the death penalty; and all the churches will know that I am He who analyzes the kidneys and the hearts; and I will give to every one of you according to your deeds."
Testing the heart and the kidneys is Divine testing to prove the love and stability of a believer in his relationship with God. The heart is the seat of love in the soul. Testing the heart is testing a person's integrity. Without integrity there is no love. The Integrity Envelope (ECS) determines the Capacity for Love in the heart. Therefore, God tests the heart to prove whether the person will maintain his love for God in the face of various trials and temptations.
The fat pads of the kidneys contain the adrenal glands, which fuel the emotion. The testing of the kidneys arouses emotional instability, such as Emotional Revolt of the Soul, selfish ambition, and Reverse Process Reversionism. The emotion may react from threats of fear, anxiety, pride, jealousy, and bitterness. Challenges to physical well-being cause many to run in fear. Some are embarrassed to take a stand for Christ. Others fall apart when they are pruned (Jn 15:2).
Since God already knows everything, why does He bother to test the heart and the kidneys? The answer is to make us witnesses (Jn 3:21; Acts 1:8) and to qualify us for promotion or demotion (Rev 2:23). Our deeds, not intentions, bear witness of us (Tit 1:16; 1 Jn 3:18). Our deeds must be Divine Good through Grace (2 Cor 9:8), not the dead works and evil of unbelievers (Tit 1:16; Rev 20:12, 13).
As with all things, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit work in harmony to test the heart and the kidneys. The Father wills it, the Son directs it, and the Holy Spirit performs it.
Some passages emphasize God the Father in testing the heart and the kidneys. The testing is performed by the will of God the Father (Dt 8:5-6; Psa 7:9; 17:3), who knows all from his omniscience (Ps 44:20-21; 139:1-24; Luk 16:15; Heb 12:7).
Psalm 139:1-2God the Father has analyzed David. He has always known him in His omniscience.
1 O LORD, You have analyzed me and known me.
2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
You understand my thought from afar.
Psalm 139:16God the Father knew David when he was an embryo. All of David's specifications were written in God's Divine Design file. The days of David's life were fore-ordained. Even the day of conception was specified. Spiritual Self-Esteem that he is asking God to analyze his Integrity Envelope through testing.
Your eyes have seen my embryo,
And in Your file, all of them were written;
Days that were fore-ordained,
And for it (embryo, conception) one among them.
The testing of the heart and kidneys is directed by the Lord Jesus Christ, the High Priest (2 Sa 7:14; Psa 11:4-5; 26:2; Jer 11:20; 12:3; 17:10; Rom 8:27; Rev 2:23).
When David decided to build a temple for the Lord, the word of the Lord (the Son) came to Nathan the prophet with an answer (2 Sam 7:4-5). The Lord (the Son) said that when David died, his son would build the temple (2 Sam 7:12, 13).
2 Samuel 7:14-15The Lord (the Son) says that He will be a father to David's son and He will give him strong punishment as a father for his son. However, this is a metaphor. The Lord (the Son) is like a father who punishes his son. He is not God the Father. This is the Lord (the Son) who will direct the punishment of David's son.
14 I (the LORD) will be a father to him (David's son) and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will punish him with the rod of men and the strokes of the children of men,
15 but My Gracious Love shall not depart from him, as I caused it to depart from Saul, whom I removed from before you.
Jeremiah 17:10The Lord (the Son) analyzes the heart. "Analyze" is the Hebrew rq^j* (chaqar), meaning to search; examine thoroughly; investigate. This is testing by analysis.
I the LORD, analyze the heart,
I validate the kidneys.
Even to give to mankind according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his deeds.
The Lord validates the kidneys. "Validates" is the Hebrew /j^b* (bachan), meaning to perform a qualification test, acceptance test; validate; proof test. He validates the kidneys, which means to test stability under pressure to determine if a person will break down in fear and Emotional Revolt of the Soul.
The heart and kidneys are tested in order to "give to mankind according to his ways." Ways are the paths of life, including the strategic and tactical advance. For example, a believer should be on the road to Spiritual Maturity and solving the problems the Lord gives him daily along the way. On the job the Lord gives the assignments, and they must be completed by Divine Good production through Grace. Christian Integrity must be protected, not the values of the devil's world (Psa 127:1). Bible Doctrine will light the path (Psa 119:105).
The Lord gives a person promotion or demotion "according to the fruit of his deeds." A person's deeds are like the fruit of a tree. They are either good or bad (Matt 7:16-20). Producing Divine Good leads to promotion, "greater Grace" (Jas 4:6). Producing bad, or evil, deeds leads to demotion (2 Tim 3:13). The testing of the heart and kidneys expose the true deeds of a person so the Lord can bless or curse him based upon his deeds.
A person who fails testing falls into a state of sin where he grieves or quenches the Holy Spirit. God still loves the person even though He despises his miserable condition, and the Holy Spirit intercedes for the person "with groanings too deep for words" (Rom 8:26). All three members of the Trinity are involved in the person's life as revealed in the next verse.
Romans 8:27The One who analyzes the hearts is Jesus Christ. "Analyzes" is the Greek ejraunavw (eraunao), which means to search, investigate, examine; Plato used it for philosophical investigation; it is used in John for searching, investigating, or analyzing the scripture (Jn 5:39). Jesus Christ who directed the testing of a person knows what the Holy Spirit is thinking when He intercedes for the person. The intercession directed to the Father is understood by the Son (who is directing the testing) because the intercession is based on the will of God the Father.
moreover, the One who analyzes the hearts (Jesus Christ) knows what the thinking of the Spirit is, because He (Holy Spirit) intercedes for the saints on the basis of the will of God.
So, the Son ordered the testing. The person flunked the test, and fell into sin in which the Holy Spirit was grieved or quenched. The Holy Spirit interceded for the person, and the Son understood what the Holy Spirit was requesting of the Father because the intercession of the Holy Spirit was based on the will of God the Father. All three members of the Trinity are always in rapport.
Recognizing Our King and High Priest
We should recognize the Lord Jesus Christ as our King and High Priest. As Christians, we should be in fellowship with Him. We should live the new Spiritual life and serve Him.
Hebrews 12:2 Jesus, Our High Priest and King"Be looking away to Jesus" – this means to take notice of Jesus in His exalted position of High Priest of the Church. "Looking away" is the Greek ajforavw (aphorao), from (ajpov, away from) + (o&ravw, look) = to view with undivided attention. This is Spiritual perception; it does not refer to visualization. The believer-priest needs to know where he stands in relation to his High Priest.
Be looking away to Jesus, the author and finisher of our doctrine, who because of the Happiness set before Him, endured the cross, disregarding the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the Throne of God.
We are a holy priesthood (1 Pet 2:5) and a royal priesthood (1 Pet 2:9). As a holy priesthood, we can communicate with God the Father, who is Holy. As a royal priesthood, we are the royal family of Jesus Christ the King.
"The author and finisher of our doctrine" – Jesus authored the New Covenant to the Church (Heb 7:22; 8:6; 9:14-15; 12:24). This doctrine is contained in the 21 epistles to the Church. "Finisher" is the Greek teleiwthv" (teleiotes), meaning perfecter; completer; finisher. Jesus completed our doctrine with the completion of the Book of Revelation.
"Because of the Happiness set before Him" – Jesus used Divine Happiness to sustain Him on the cross. This Happiness, which ranges from tranquility to ecstatics, is available to every Church Age Believer.
"Endured the cross, disregarding the shame" – Jesus Christ endured the cross. He was sustained in His humanity by the power of the Holy Spirit and a completed Edification Complex of the Soul. He willingly accepted the imputation and Judgment for every sin in human history (2 Cor 5:21; Rom 4:25). Even though the sin was disgusting to His perfection, He disregarded the shame in order to finish paying for the sins of the world to purchase our eternal Salvation.
"And has sat down at the right hand of the Throne of God" – God the Father seated Jesus at His right hand, which is the place of honor (Psa 110:1; Heb 1:3; 10:12-13). Jesus Christ in His resurrection body was promoted to King of kings and Lord of lords. He is Sovereign over all Creation. His session is our Z-axis relationship with Him.
The Book of Hebrews is the highest and most scholarly in the Bible, but the human author, who is unknown, was trying to teach a congregation of duds. They had not advanced beyond the basics.
Hebrews 12:3 Soul FaintingIn the face of difficult testing or strong punishment, the weak believer will fall apart and faint in his soul. In the face of difficulties, the example of Jesus Christ should be remembered. He was perfect and without sin. Yet He suffered strong opposition by sinners, namely the religious crowd. He did not react or vacillate in the face of hostility.
For consider the One (Christ) who has endured such opposition by sinners against Himself, in order that you may not grow weary, fainting in your souls.
The believer must not grow weary. Growing weary is due to lack of endurance, objectivity, and capacity for life. Weariness comes from worry, which is a mental attitude sin. Growing weary leads to fainting in the soul. Fainting in the soul is a sign of Emotional Revolt of the Soul.1 Emotion fills the void of lack of objective thinking on the cerebral cortex. The soul in emotional revolt is not thinking doctrine. It has fallen apart, or fainted.
Hebrews 12:4 Conflict Against SinThis refers to the believer's fight in contrast to the Lord Jesus Christ who resisted to the point of death. The believer has not become a martyr.
Not yet have you resisted to the point of bloodshed in your struggle against sin.
"In your struggle against sin" – the struggle that the believer faces is against sin. Although sins were paid for on the cross, mankind is free to reject the redemption solution. Therefore, the believer who is sanctified will face opposition from sin and sinners. Sin is the real problem that hinders our relationship with God. Sin comes from within and without. It comes from the Old Sin Nature in the body and from the world and the devil on the outside, and it meets in the battlefield of the soul.2
The believer must avail himself of the redemption solution. He must reject the old life of sin and live the New Spiritual life in Christ. He must be crucified with Christ (ref. Gal 2:20). Furthermore, he must be crucified to the world (Gal 6:14). He must reject the influence of sin from the world. This requires doctrinal discernment to even recognize the problem. If he doesn't separate from the world, he won't stand a chance; but then he cannot leave the world.
There will be pressure from the world and the Cosmic System. The solution requires relying on the redemption of the cross and the filling of the Holy Spirit (1 Jn 3:9). For example, redemption must be used to purify and sanctify the Right Man – Right Woman relationship.
The Lord Jesus Christ as High Priest orders Divine Discipline Punishment upon the believer. The punishment is punitive action for carnality or wrongdoing. The punishment must be taken in stride without falling apart and fainting in the soul.
Proverbs 3:11 Divine PunishmentHere David is teaching his son, Solomon, about Divine punishment. David was an expert on Divine punishment because he had suffered through the excruciating pain of punishment from his adultery with Bathsheba and murdering her husband (Psa 38). His punishment was made worse because he delayed Rebound (Psa 32:3-5).
My son, do not despise the discipline of the LORD
Or be weary of His punishment,
"Do not despise the discipline of the LORD." Despising the Lord's discipline is bitter reaction from legalism. Bitterness is a sin. A person in sin cannot respond to the Lord. The bitter person is rejecting the Lord and the Lord's punishment. Therefore, the bitter person will not profit from the punishment. The best way to ride out Divine punishment is in the filling of the Holy Spirit in fellowship with God. That will turn the cursing into blessing.
Discipline from the Lord is designed to correct aberrant behavior. The one who receives discipline is guilty of some kind of wrongdoing. In most cases the problem is obvious. In other cases the reason for discipline may be much more difficult to understand, especially if there is limited knowledge of Bible Doctrine.
"The discipline of the LORD" is from the Son, the second person of the Trinity, who directs Divine punishment.
"Or be weary of His punishment" – becoming weary or afraid is reaction from lawlessness. Weariness comes from the sins of worry, fear, and dread. This person falls apart and becomes subjective from Divine punishment. The person in lawlessness will be out of fellowship with the Lord and unable to profit from the Lord's punishment. The person who does not respond to punishment is doomed to repeat the same problem and face even stronger punishment.
"Punishes" is the Hebrew jk^y* (yakach), which means to punish or to correct by punishment. It is especially used for God's discipline of men for their correction (Job 5:17; Prov. 3:12; Psa. 6:1; 38:1; 94:10; 105:14).
"As a father to the son in whom he delights" – the analogy is the father punishing his son, although the word, punishes, is not stated (Deut 8:5; Prov 13:24). The phrase, "as a father," indicates this is an analogy. The Lord punishes as a father, but He is not God the Father. Also, there is no word, punishes, in the Hebrew text, but the Septuagint inserts the word, "flogs," which is the Greek mastigovw (mastigoo), meaning to whip, flog, of flogging as punishment decreed by the synagogue (Dt 25:2-3); punish, of God (Jer 5:3).
So, the Lord (Son) punishes from Love, from His Divine Integrity. He is always fair. All the members of the Godhead are synchronized in Divine punishment. The Father wills; the Son directs; and the Holy Spirit inflicts the punishment. The Lord may punish like a father, but He is not the Father.
Reasons for punishment include: Discipline, correction, and reproof. Punishment may be long term for some offenses. Although testing may cause as much pain as punishment, the purpose of testing is different. Testing is designed to prove, verify, and qualify for promotion; whereas, punishment is for punitive action for wrongdoing.
Now, Proverbs 3:12-13 is quoted from the Septuagint in Hebrews 12:5-6. Since the verses are quoted in Hebrews, that means the Septuagint translation of these verses is inspired. The Septuagint differs from the Hebrew Masoretic Text in the use of two imperatives of prohibition and the addition of the word for flogging.
Hebrews 12:5 Divine PunishmentThe "doctrinal principle of encouragement" is the Greek paravklhsi" (paraklesis), from (parav, beside) + (klh`si", call) = the doctrinal principle of encouragement. There is great encouragement in punishment. Although punishment at the time hurts, when we look back we can appreciate it. The principle of encouragement was taught in Proverbs 3:12 as not despising or being weary at the punishment of the Lord.
And so, you have forgotten the doctrinal principle of encouragement which teaches you as sons: "My son, stop despising the punishment of the Lord; and stop fainting when you are being punished by Him;"
"Which teaches you as sons" – the writer of Hebrews seizes upon the verse that was addressed to David's son Solomon as a principle and relates it to his congregation as sons. He will continue to emphasize the discipline of sons in the passage that follows.
"My son, stop despising the punishment of the Lord." "Stop despising" is a Greek imperative of prohibition, which means stop doing something you are doing. "Despising" is the Greek o*ligwrevw (oligoreo), from (o*livgo", little) + (w[ra, care) = to despise, hate; regard as having little value. This is the sin of bitterness, which is outside the control limits of the Divine Dynasphere in legalism.3 This person is unable to take the punishment and learn from it without reacting. This corresponds to mountains. Despising Divine punishment is rejection of the love of God. Hatred of Divine punishment is reaction rather than respect for God.
"Stop fainting" is another imperative of prohibition, which means stop doing something you are doing. "Fainting" is the Greek e*kluvw (ekluo), from (e*k, out) + (luvw, untie) = to be faint, fail, relax; to unloose, be ungirded. Fainting refers to being out of the control limits of the Divine Dynasphere in lawlessness. Fainting refers to fear, worry, and Emotional Revolt of the Soul. Fainting corresponds to the valley.
"When you are being punished by Him" – Divine punishment is directed by the Lord Jesus Christ, the High Priest.
Both testing and Divine punishment must be endured. To pray to take away the test or the punishment means the person will not be able to derive the benefit from it. Taking away the test means there can be no reward or promotion for passing the test. Taking away the punishment means wrongdoing will not be properly understood and the love of God cannot be expressed through punishment toward the guilty person.
Some of the reasons for Divine punishment are:
The Lord "punishes." This is Divine punitive action from the Lord Jesus Christ, the High Priest. "And He flogs." "Flogs" is the Greek mastigovw (mastigoo), meaning to whip, flog, scourge. This is intensive punishment. "He (the Lord) flogs every son." The Lord Jesus Christ is the One who flogs. Believers are sons of God the Father, but they are not sons of the Lord Jesus Christ (Heb 2:11). So, this is punishment of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the sons of God the Father. The Lord is not our Father but our brother.
"Receives" is the Greek paradevcomai (paradechomai), which means to receive with love; receive favorably = love (Prov 3:12). So it should be translated "receives with love." In keeping with the analogy of the love of a father for his son, the Lord Jesus Christ, our High Priest, receives us with love. His love is beyond human knowledge (Eph 3:19).
Hebrew 12:7 God's PunishmentDivine punishment is a way of life for believers. Since we are sons of God, then God the Father deals with us as sons and punishes us. This is the analogy of a father punishing his son. Punishment addresses our failures, shortcomings, and disregard for the Plan of God. God has designed a special place with special blessing for each of us. When we get off track from the life He designed for us, then He punishes us. Before we squander our inheritance totally, we receive punishment in the form of warning and intensified discipline before dying the Sin Leading to Death.
Because of punishment you endure, therefore God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not punish?
Hebrews 12:8 Illative Conclusion"If you are without punishment" – this is a Greek first class condition (if, and it is true), which is an assumption for the sake of argument. This is followed by the Greek a[ra (ara), an illative (inferential) particle (conjunction), meaning consequently. "Consequently, you are bastards." "Bastards" is the Greek novqo" (nothos), which means bastard – not born again. Sons are believers, and bastards are unbelievers, who have no Spiritual Father. Sons receive punishment. The Righteousness of God demands punishment from the Grace of God and Love.
But if you are without punishment, of which all (believers) have become partakers, then you are bastards and not sons.
"And not sons" – unbelievers are not sons of God.
Hebrews 12:9If we respected our human fathers who disciplined us, should we not even to a greater degree respect God the Father? God is called the "Father of spirits" as the Father, who gives the spirit of human life (Nu 16:22; 27:16; Rev 22:6). Since He has the power of life and death, we should be subject to Him "and live." Being subject to the Father is submission to His authority in our Spiritual life. We should obey the will of the Father and respect His discipline.
Furthermore, we had human fathers for discipline, and we respected them. To a greater degree shall we not be subject to the Father of spirits and live?
Hebrews 12:10 Discipline of God the FatherOur human fathers disciplined us as they saw fit, but God the Father disciplines us so that "we may share in His holiness." God is holy, and for us to enjoy a perfect love relationship with Him, we need to be holy (Lev 19:2). Sin separates us from God and destroys our love relationship. The punishment of the Father is designed to free us from our affinity to sin so we can enjoy fellowship with Him.
For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our benefit, that we may share in His holiness.
Even though the Lord Jesus Christ still directs our punishment, the will of the Father demands that we be punished for offenses that are contrary to Him. Discipline that emphasizes the will of the Father includes:
God the Father is Sovereign. He is above all Creation. Everything exists because of His will. Everything is from His Design. Everything is deterministic. There is a reason for everything. Everything in this life happens by the will of God, either from His directive or permissive will. Therefore, Divine Discipline associated with Sovereign Design is from God the Father. Nebuchadnezzar received Divine Punishment when he took credit for God's Sovereignty (Dan 4:30-37).
Falling into Sin
Existing in a state of sin, e.g. grieving and quenching the Holy Spirit from hardness of the heart, is opposed to God's Holiness. God may harden a person's heart or He may have mercy (Rom 9:18). He loved Jacob and hated Esau (Rom 9:13). Jacob was blessed and Esau was cursed, both according to God's will. God hardened Pharaoh's heart in order to destroy Egypt (Ex 4:21; 7:3; 9:12; 10:20, 27; 11:10; 14:4, 17). He hardened the heart of King Sihon of Heshbon to destroy him (Deut 2:30). He hardened the hearts of the Evil Kings of Canaan to destroy them (Josh 11:20). Even when Jesus Christ performed miracles on Earth, people did not believe Him because God the Father hardened their hearts (Jn 12:37-43).
God the Father designs our destiny, our calling. Straying from God's calling or will for our lives may bring His punishment. Examples include Jonah and Balaam.
Worldly relationships violate the sanctity of the relationship with God. God will not tolerate unholy relationships. David was sorely punished for committing adultery with Bathsheba (2 Sa 11:2-5). The believer who tries to be the friend of the world will be the enemy of God (Jas 4:1-4).
Evil, Demon Influence
Evil is from Satan. Satan and his demons are the enemies of God. Therefore, influence from evil or Satan and his demons will bring the punishment of God the Father. But the punishment will be in the time and manner of God's choosing. God is Sovereign over all, and He decides when a demon has access to a believer. He allowed Satan to enter Judas Iscariot (Lk 22:3; Jn 13:27) because it was His will to send Jesus to the cross. However, Judas died the Sin Leading to Death. And the Father allowed a demon into Paul's life (2 Cor 12:7). When Paul prayed to the Father to remove the demon, the Lord answered that it could only be removed by Grace, which means by the Father's will.
Hebrews 12:11All Divine discipline at time it occurs is not a source of happiness, but sorrow. Yet, afterwards it produces the peaceful fruit of Righteousness. "Peaceful fruit" corresponds to the production of fruit by a tree residing quietly in one place. Peaceful fruit also corresponds to peace (reconciliation) between God and man and peace (harmonious rapport) with others. "Righteousness" is God's Righteousness, which identifies the fruit with the production of God. After the punishment removes the chaff, the fruit that is left is Righteous.
On the one hand, all discipline for the moment does not seem to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of Righteousness to those who have been trained by it (discipline).
The redemption solution affords every member of the human race an equal opportunity to be saved. Jesus Christ paid for everyone's sins so that anyone who wants to be saved can receive Eternal Life. Salvation is received through faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ redeemed everyone from the slave market of sin, but each individual has the right to choose the gift of Eternal Life.
Those who choose the redemption solution will have a life of great blessing, Love, and Happiness for all eternity. Those who reject the redemption solution will be condemned to the Lake of Fire for eternal punishment along with the devil and his angels. This is the contrast between Heaven and Hell – the best and the worst. Those who believe God will accept His Son and go to Heaven. Those who believe Satan's lie will be condemned to Hell. From God comes truth, and from Satan comes lies.
Satan was the most beautiful, powerful, intelligent, and highest-ranking angel that God ever created. Therefore, Satan was the most qualified creature to challenge God. Although he is no match for God, he has been able to fool large numbers of angels and people. He convinced a third of the angels to follow him and rebel against God. Throughout human history he has convinced the majority of mankind to reject the redemption solution and suffer the consequences of Hell. Of course, Satan denies that God will ever sent anyone to Hell or the Lake of Fire.
The large number of people who have rejected the redemption solution is a tribute to the genius of Satan. However, this has no bearing on the truth of God. It is neither a challenge nor a threat to God. God made Satan, and Satan only exists because God allows him to exist. Those who reject the redemption solution are the biggest fools of history. Nothing is more foolish than to reject God's Love, Life, Truth, and Blessing for the cursing, darkness, and death that awaits Satan and his followers in the Lake of Fire.
Whereas, the worst decision is to reject the redemption solution for Salvation, the second worst decision is to reject the redemption solution after Salvation. Satan is not only active in convincing people to reject the redemption solution for Salvation, he is also active in convincing believers to reject the redemption solution after Salvation. So effective is Satan that very few believers stick with the redemption solution and advance to Spiritual Maturity. Those who continue to Spiritual Rapport are very rare.
Only a few in any generation make it to Spiritual Rapport. Those who reach Spiritual Rapport are people like Job, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, Jacob, Joseph, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Hosea, David, Daniel, Elijah, Elisha, the Prophets, and the Apostles. In the Church Age after the Apostolic Period (after 100 AD), there has been little evidence of believers reaching Spiritual Maturity, and next to nothing is recorded about anyone reaching Spiritual Rapport.
The redemption solution requires that believers quit living in sin. Living in sin corresponds to a state of hardness of the heart, quenching and grieving the Holy Spirit. Even after believers learn to Rebound, they find it difficult to recognize their own fat-headed arrogance, which is behind hardness of the heart. The testing and punishment required to see this is more than most believers will bear. They love the world too much.
In contrast, the Bible and human history are full of examples of rejection of the redemption solution by both unbelievers and believers.
Cain's descendants rejected the redemption solution. Lamech in the fourth generation from Cain rejected the redemption solution (Gen 4:18). Lamech became the first polygamist and bragged about murdering a man and a boy (Gen 4:19-24).
In the second phase of testing, Job was visited by three friends, who tried to help him. Later, a fourth man tried to straighten him out. All of these men were mature believers, who were knowledgeable of the Theology of the day. However, they all had one problem. They were using the wrong paradigm. They all assumed in their arrogance that Job was suffering because of his sins. They used the paradigm of Spiritual Maturity. They had never heard of the phase of the Spiritual life called Spiritual Rapport. They had no idea that Job had received undeserved suffering as testing for promotion to Spiritual Rapport.
The advice of Job's friends was tantamount to someone trying to straighten out Elijah on his way to meet the Lord on the mountain of God (1 Ki 19:8). God had hardened the hearts of Job's friends to test Job and provide a written record for history. With hardened hearts Job's friends tried to refute Job from their own arrogance. Job's friends were all in the Cosmic System due to their own arrogance. The first three friends were in Cosmic, Political, and Ecumenical Babylon, and the fourth friend was in Babylon due to a Time Axis failure. Their arguments reveal their association with the Cosmic System.
As Job's friends presented their arguments, Job tried to justify himself. This was also a sign of hardness of the heart and arrogant self-justification. In this Job was wrong. He was in a state of sin due to his ignorance, and he was not applying the redemption solution. He needed to Rebound and shut up. Promotion to Spiritual Rapport only comes through Grace. Job cannot defend himself. Only God can defend him against the Cosmic System.
After Job's friends had finished their sermons and Job had defended himself, the Lord revealed Himself to Job out of a whirlwind (Job 38:1). The Lord explained His Creation and control over the heavens and the Earth. He explained astrology, the weather, the animal kingdom, and the wonders of Creation. When the Lord had finished, Job understood the Almighty from the perspective of Spiritual Rapport.
Job 42:5 Job Perceives the LordJob had known about the Lord by hearing, but now he has perceived Him. Job had heard about God and believed. He had lived by faith. But now he perceived God from a different perspective. God was no longer an entity. He was God. He was ubiquitous. He was everywhere in every thing, and without God there was nothing. In Spiritual Rapport a person sees God as God – not a god. If God is God, there can be none other.
By the hearing of the ear, I have heard of You,
But now my eye has seen you.
Then Job understood the need to Rebound.
Job 42:7 Job's Friends are JudgedJob's friends were in the Cosmic System attacking from Cosmic, Political, and Ecumenical Babylon. God hardened their hearts. They were mature believers, but they assumed the paradigm of Spiritual Maturity rather than Spiritual Rapport. They opposed Job and called him a liar. They had no right to do this. They were playing God. They were not witnesses of the Lord as Job was.
And it came about after the Lord had spoken these words to Job, that the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, "My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends, because you have not spoken of Me accurately as My servant Job has."
Only three of Job's friends are mentioned here because they were the primary attackers of Job. They counterattacked Job from Cosmic, Political, and Ecumenical Babylon. However, the Time Axis counterattack of Elihu is also from the Cosmic System.
Job 42:8Job's three friends were required to offer 7 bulls and 7 rams as burnt offerings for their sin. This was the redemption solution (Rebound). Seven stands for categorical suffering.
"Now therefore, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, and go to My servant Job, and offer up a burnt offering for yourselves (Rebound), and My servant Job shall pray for you (intercession). For I will accept only his face lest I inflict on you the punishment of your folly, because you have not spoken of Me accurately, as My servant Job has."
Job must intercede for his friends because they have wronged him. Job was promoted, and they were demoted. This is characteristic of promotion to Spiritual Rapport. The same thing happened when Jacob was promoted to Spiritual Rapport and Rachel died. The Lord would accept only Job's "face," which means the Lord would only accept Job's intercessory prayer. Job's friends could not pray for themselves because in their hardness of heart they were under liability to the Supreme Court of Heaven.
"Lest I inflict on you the punishment of your folly." This is a Hebrew idiom that means that Job's friends are guilty and liable for Divine punishment. They have lied about God. Although most of what they said about God was true, it was not correct application. They were wrong about Job. They were lying. They were in the Cosmic System and were the pawns of the devil. They were telling half-truths in their ignorance. The Lord said to them, "you have not spoken of Me accurately, as My servant Job has." They were in a state of sin in legalism. They must follow the redemption solution, which requires that they offer burnt offerings and ask Job to intercede for them.
Job 42:9Job's three friends obeyed the Lord. When Job interceded for them, "the LORD lifted up the face of Job." Lifting up the face is a Hebrew idiom that means to grant a request (Gen 19:21; 1 Sam 25:35; 2 Ki 3:14; Job 42:8, 9). This probably originated from a person prostate in humility.
So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did as the LORD commanded them; and the LORD lifted up the face of Job.
When Jacob confiscated the household idols and asked the tribe to purify themselves prior to moving to Bethel, Rachel did not use the redemption solution. Consequently, when Jacob was being tested for promotion to Spiritual Rapport, Rachel died the Sin Leading to Death. Unlike Job's friends, Jacob was not allowed to intercede for her. She was living in a state of sin in hardness of the heart. She was in the Cosmic System opposing Jacob. There was no way for Jacob to be in Spiritual Rapport and have harmony with her. She died in childbirth.
Hebrews 12:16Here the Greek povrno" (pornos) means one who has sex with a prostitute; a fornicator. Esau's marriages to Hittite women amounted to worshipping the Prostitute of Babylon.
See to it that there be no one who practices prostitution or godless person (unbeliever) like Esau, who sold his own birthright for a single meal.
Hebrews 12:17Years after Esau sold his birthright, Esau sought to inherit the double blessing of primogeniture. However, Jacob had already tricked his father into giving him the blessing. The blessing of the firstborn included being the Spiritual leader of the Tribe. Esau could not fulfill that as an unbeliever. Esau could not come to a change of mind regarding faith in the Lord for Salvation. "Change of mind" is the Greek metavnoia (metanoia). Even though Esau cried and begged his father to give him the birthright, he could not have it. Esau died an unbeliever and went to Hades because he rejected the redemption solution.
For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was disqualified, for he did not find an opportunity for a change of mind, although he sought for it with tears.
The Exodus generation rejected the redemption solution by refusing to give up the sins of unbelief and fear. They insisted on living in a state of sin from hardness of the heart. In spite of the thousands of sacrifices they offered for sins, they turned around in reversionism and went back to their sins. In contrast Caleb and Joshua accepted the redemption solution, obeyed the Lord, and entered the Promised Land.Bathsheba, he neglected the redemption solution. He committed adultery, had Bathsehba's husband murdered, and did not Rebound for about a year. During this time, David's punishment was great and his pain was unbearable (Psa 32:3-4).
When Nathan confronted David, he used the redemption solution and Rebounded (2 Sam 12:13; Psa 32:5). However, David's punishment was great. Because he had Uriah murdered, the sword would never depart from David's house (2 Sam 12:9-10). David would lose his kingdom in the Absalom Rebellion and have to fight to restore it. And the child born from adultery died (2 Sam 12:14-19).Jews of Jesus' day rejected the redemption solution (Jn 1:11; 3:32; ref. Jn 8:24). They arrested Jesus and sent Him to Pilate to be crucified. During the Church Age, the hearts of the Jews are hardened against the redemption solution of Jesus Christ (Rom 11:25).
Judaizers in the early Church perverted the Gospel and tried to get Christians to keep the Law. Jews who converted to Christianity in the Church at Jerusalem were very legalistic and tried to kill Paul.
1 Corinthians 11:22Paul pointed out that the Corinthians could have eaten at home rather than coming together to eat before Church service. These carnal believers were full of sin and worldliness. They were insensitive to others and thus brought shame to those who had nothing. They embarrassed them. They did not practice "Love your neighbor."
What! Do you not have houses in which to eat and drink? Or do you despise the Church of God and shame those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you? In this I will not praise you.
Eating together is social life, and carnal believers are incapable of having a good social life. Since the Eucharist followed the communal meal, it was obviously also a disaster. Now, the Eucharist that Jesus instituted followed the Passover feast. So, the failure of the Corinthians is the first example in the Church Age of the problem of celebrating the Eucharist.
1 Corinthians 11:23-24Paul received the instructions for celebrating Communion either directly or indirectly from the Lord. After Jesus had eaten the Passover feast with his disciples the night before He went to the cross, He instituted the Eucharist. After they had eaten the Passover meal, He gave thanks and broke unleavened bread. He explained that the bread symbolized His body, which was a substitute for them. The body of Christ was the sacrifice for sins. Eating the bread after His death would symbolize confirmation of the New Covenant, which He inaugurated with His death on the cross.
23 For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it, and said, "This is (represents) My body, which is a substitute for you; do this in memory of Me."
1 Corinthians 11:25Then Jesus took the cup of grape juice, which symbolized the New Covenant to the Church inaugurated by His blood. The blood of Christ symbolizes His substitutionary spiritual death on the cross for the sins of the world – the redemption solution. So, drinking the cup after Christ's death symbolized confirmation of the New Covenant to the Church, and for the individual it symbolized confirmation of Salvation. This is the same concept as the peace offering in which the sacrificial animal was eaten to confirm the covenant between God and man, or in the case of Jacob and Laban, to confirm the truce between them.
In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, "This cup is the New Covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in memory of Me."
After Moses received the Law, he offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. The people ate the bulls of the peace offerings as confirmation of entering into the Mosaic Covenant with the Lord. In this the people were brought into covenant fellowship with the Lord.
Jesus said, "Do this in memory of me." Jesus asked His disciples to do this as a memorial of His substitutionary death. This is an imperative of entreaty, not an imperative of command. Of course, when the Lord asks a person to do something, it carries the same weight as a command. However, later Paul will explain that taking Communion is optional. The Corinthians should not be taking communion in their carnal state. And later in the Church Age, some will celebrate Communion regularly (imperative of command) and others will celebrate it less frequently on special occasions (imperative of entreaty).
Since Communion symbolizes the redemption solution, taking Communion while rejecting the redemption solution makes a mockery of the ritual. Ever since the Lord said, "Do this in memory of Me," Communion has been accompanied by problems (1 Cor 11:24). Since Communion symbolizes the redemption solution of the cross, Rebound is a prerequisite. Apparently, some of the Corinthian believers didn't even Rebound before Communion.
1 Corinthians 11:27Failure to Rebound before Communion is an "unworthy manner." Since Communion symbolizes the redemption solution, it is important to use the redemption solution and Rebound before Communion. Those who take Communion in an unworthy manner will be guilty of rejecting the redemption solution, which is called "the body and the blood of the Lord." The implication is that serious Divine punishment will follow.
Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord.
1 Corinthians 11:28"Examine" is the Greek dokimavzw (dokimazo), which means to put to the test, examine; to acceptance test, qualification test, verify, validate (1 Pet 1:7). This definitely includes Rebound as necessary. The filling of the Holy Spirit is necessary to have fellowship with God and the Lord Jesus Christ during Communion. Self examination is to ferret out any sin or impediment to fellowship with God. All distractions that interfere with concentration must be set aside.
But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup.
1 Corinthians 11:29This is another stern warning that God is standing by to Judge anyone who does not evaluate himself correctly before taking Communion. "Evaluate … correctly" is the Greek diakrivnw (diakrino), which means to judge correctly. The body is mentioned because it is the source of the Old Sin Nature.
For the one who eats and drinks, eats and drinks Judgment upon himself if he does not evaluate the body correctly.
1 Corinthians 11:30This is a very stern warning of the levels of Divine Judgment.
For this reason, many among you are weak and sick, and a large number are asleep (dead).
The problem is compounded because hardness of the heart is a stage of reversionism. God hardens the heart, and man cannot control it. Evidence of hardness of the heart is not having Divine Love in the heart, especially for God, the Lord Jesus Christ, and Right Man or Right Woman. When this Love disappears, it is time to do some serious soul searching – "examine yourself."
The Holy Spirit must reveal the problem to overcome the arrogance that is hardening the heart. Confessing arrogance won't work because the specific type of arrogance is hidden. Arrogant people may exhibit pretentious, haughty, or proud behavior, which may be recognized and confessed, but the underlying arrogant, hardened heart is usually not known to the person. Arrogant people don't know they are arrogant, and crazy people don't know they are crazy. And spectators may not know as much as they think they do.
The Lord's Table was instituted the night before the Lord went to the cross. It was a serious matter then, and it is a serious matter now. Communion symbolizes the redemption solution. Failure to use the redemption solution, including Rebound, disqualifies a person from taking communion. The ritual will be meaningless for such a person, and the person will invite Divine punishment.
1 Corinthians 11:32 Divine PunishmentThe Lord punishes the Church separately from the world. The Church receives punishment for a multitude of sins that violate the Word. Divine punishment of the Church is a family matter with God. The world is punished for rejecting the redemption solution for Salvation. In spite of being punished more severely, the Church will be saved, and the world will be condemned to the Lake of Fire at the Great White Throne.
But when we are judged by the Lord, we are being punished in order that we may not be condemned with the world.
Author: Larry Wood, Released - Apr. 6, 2014 - Revised May 14, 2014