Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Saviors on Mount Zion - Reconciling the Creation

Joseph Herrin (11-10-09)

Obadiah 21
Then saviors shall come to Mount Zion... and the kingdom shall be Yahweh’s.

Romans 8:19
For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God.















Roast Lamb

The word of revelation being shared here is meat for the mature. It will require some chewing. Those accustomed only to milk will undoubtedly find portions of what is set forth here difficult to swallow. I urge you to exercise patience, and to stir up the spirit within you. Set your mind to attend to what is written here, and you will find yourself very well rewarded.

It seems that the Father has chosen my seasons of camping on Jekyll Island to be times of revelation and insight. I believe this latest revelation is the crown, and summation of all that has preceded it. What has previously been viewed dimly has been set forth by the Spirit with a steadily increasing clarity.

It is the Father’s plan that the work of reconciling the creation to Himself should be brought to completion through the work of a mature body of sons and daughters. Yahweh has determined by His sovereign counsel that what Christ began 2,000 years ago in reconciling the creation to the Father, should not be brought to fulness through any other means than through the sacrificial lives of a full-stature body of Christ.

II Corinthians 5:18-19
Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

People of God, how did the Son of God reconcile the world to the Father? Was it by words alone? Was it not by a poured out life? Was it not by embracing a cross and suffering many things while choosing freely to love and forgive? It will be by such means that the reconciliation of the entire creation is brought to fulness as a cadre of sons and daughters manifesting the life of Christ take up the cross and follow in the footsteps of Yahshua. In both testimony and the experience of suffering, those who are disciples of Christ will be conformed to their Master.

Matthew 10:25
It is enough for the disciple that he become as his teacher, and the slave as his master. If they have called the head of the house Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!

I have in previous writings addressed the reason that God has left His sons and daughters on this earth when He could have raptured them away at the moment they receive Christ. When we receive the seed of Christ by the work of the Holy Spirit, the Father has merely begun a work in the lives of His children. He must see this work come to maturity. We know that it is the Father’s expressed intent that all those born of the seed of Christ should be conformed to Him in character.

Romans 8:29
For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.

The apostle Paul expresses the truth of our calling in another place.

Ephesians 4:13
Until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fulness of Christ.

From the very first chapter of Genesis we read of Elohim’s intent to create man “in Our image,” and “after Our likeness.” The first man to attain to the image of God was Yahshua. He was the first man to be born of woman who could declare, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father.” Those who have received the Spirit of Christ are on a pathway to conformity to His image. They are destined to arrive at the fulness of the stature that belongs to Christ. When they arrive at such a state they too will be able to declare, “He who has seen me has seen the Father.” How could anything else be true, if the saints of God are to be conformed to the image of Christ?

What the Spirit has been bringing forward with much clarity at this season, which I now set forth on my last day on Jekyll Island, is that we are not only called to be conformed in character to Christ, but we are called to share in His work of reconciling the creation to the Father. “He gave to us the ministry of reconciliation.”

Neither is it merely that we are given this call, for the church has long believed that this ministry of reconciling the creation back to God was accomplished through evangelism, the preaching of the gospel. What the Spirit is testifying is that a much deeper work is accomplished as we enter into a place of intercession for mankind and the fallen creation.

How is this intercession accomplished? That is the real key. The intercession is accomplished by becoming partakers in the suffering of Christ. Yet many are those who suffer for their obedience without setting the captives free. Why is this? Because they do not manifest love and forgiveness as they are experiencing the suffering of Christ.

Forgiveness is the key that sets the creation free!

When Christ declared on the cross, “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they do,” what were the results of that forgiveness?

John 1:12-13
As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

The forgiveness of Christ set the creation free from the penalty of sin and death. The forgiveness of Christ released those who were bound and captive to sin that they might become partakers of the Holy Spirit and walk in newness of life. The forgiveness of Christ allowed those who were walking in the domain of darkness to be transferred to the kingdom of light.

Forgiveness is the key the unlocks the door to entry into the kingdom of God.

Let me share here that the forgiveness of sin is obtained only through the shedding of the blood of Christ. It is not merely that Christ said, “I forgive you.” It was that He was willing to offer His soul as an atonement for the souls of men and women. Remember the recent teaching I posted titled Life is in the Blood.

http://parablesblog.blogspot.com/2009/10/foundation-four-life-is-in-blood.html


The Scriptures declare that the SOUL is in the blood. When Christ poured out His blood on the cross, He was surrendering His soul in place of the collective soul of fallen Adamic man. The Scriptures testify that “the soul that sins must die.” Yet God allowed one who knew no sin to offer His soul as a ransom for those who did sin.

II Corinthians 5:21
He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

A great exchange took place, but it would not have been possible had not Christ entreated the Father to forgive those who were to receive this priceless deliverance from the consequences of sin.

Here is a marvelous thing: Christ paid the full cost for man’s redemption on the cross, and He initiated that reconciliation that is to be realized when the words of the apostle Paul are fulfilled:

Colossians 1:19-20
For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fulness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile ALL THINGS to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.

Ephesians 1:9-10
Having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might sum up all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth — in Him.

We do not see at this time all things reconciled to God through Christ. We do not yet observe all things summed up in Christ. Yet we are promised that when God’s work is complete that this will be the condition of all creation.

I Corinthians 15:25-28
For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be abolished is death. For He has put all things in subjection under His feet. But when He says, "All things are put in subjection," it is evident that He is excepted who put all things in subjection to Him. And when all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, that God may be all in all.

When Yahweh’s plan of the ages is fulfilled, then there will be left nothing in the creation that has not been reconciled back to God through the cross of Christ. The only thing that will not be placed under a free and willing subjection to Christ is the Father Himself. When all things are subjected to the Son, then the Son also we be subjected to the Father that God may be all in all.

How is this work of reconciling the creation back to the Father to be accomplished? Will Christ do it all, or will He accomplish this work through a group of sons who attain to the fulness of His own stature? It is through sons in whom is the indwelling Spirit of Christ that the work will be completed. The apostle Paul has declared that Christ must reign until He has placed all enemies under His FEET. Are not feet a part of the body? And are not the saints the body of Christ?

This ministry of reconciliation has been entrusted to the body of Christ. Yet we should not assume that it will be accomplished merely by preaching the good news of Christ. It must also be accomplished by entering into that same ministry of forgiveness that was observed in the life of Christ. He declared that He did not come to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. To the woman caught in adultery He said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more.” To the paraplegic lowered through the roof into His presence He announced, “Your sins are forgiven.” And in His dying words on the cross He proclaimed, “Father, forgive them.”

With these words of forgiveness the creation is set free from its bondage to sin. And this same power of forgiveness has been entrusted to the saints of Christ.

John 20:22-23
And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained."

It was for this purpose that the Holy Spirit was given - that those who received the Spirit of Christ might enter into this ministry of forgiveness. It is this same authority to forgive and retain sins that is spoken of in the following words of Yahshua.

Matthew 16:19
"I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

What do keys do? Keys open up prison doors. Keys are used to unlock that which was locked. Christ is declaring that He is entrusting to mankind this ministry of releasing others from their bondage to sin. How are they to do so? By the act of forgiveness. Matthew records a yet another conversation of Christ on this matter of forgiveness.

Matthew 18:15-19
"And if your brother sins, go and reprove him in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed. And if he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax-gatherer. Truly I say to you, whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.”

Is it not remarkable that these words of Christ concerning any two agreeing on a matter have been used in all manner of applications relating to material blessing, but their original context is ignored. Christ was declaring that if any two agreed to bind a man over to be punished for their sin and refusal to repent that it would be done in heaven. If these same ones, finding a repentant heart, were to loose a brother from his sins, it would also be done in heaven. This power to forgive sins is the mightiest power and authority entrusted to the church.

If you doubt that this was truly the intent of these words, observe how this was actually practiced among the apostles and the church. Paul in writing to the Corinthian church concerning a Christian man engaged in grievous sin wrote:

I Corinthians 5:4-5
In the name of our Lord Yahshua, when you are assembled, and I with you in spirit, with the power of our Lord Yahshua, I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Yahshua.

What an enormous authority Christ gave to His followers in granting them the ability to forgive or retain the sins of others. The apostle Paul, being fully aware of this authority, exercised it often.

I Timothy 1:20
Among these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have delivered over to Satan, so that they may be taught not to blaspheme.

These are but two examples of binding. I am persuaded that in many more instances the authority to loose others from their sins was exercised by the disciples of Christ.

James 5:14-15
Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him.

Always the authority of Christ granted to His people was to be used for building up, and not for tearing down.

II Corinthians 13:10
For this reason I am writing these things while absent, in order that when present I may not use severity, in accordance with the authority which the Lord gave me, for building up and not for tearing down.

People of God, the kingdom of God will be manifested upon the earth as mature sons and daughters begin to walk in the authority God has given them to build up, and not to tear down. We must first be proven before we can be entrusted with such power. When Paul was breathing out threats and murder before his conversion he had no such spiritual authority. Only those who are full of the Holy Spirit can be entrusted with such power.

In the examples cited above we read of elders praying and the sins of those who have transgressed being forgiven. The position of elder is a spiritual office. It is required that those who walk in such authority be filled with the Holy Spirit. The apostle Paul was a man filled with the Holy Spirit. We also read of deacons having the same qualification laid upon them.

Acts 6:3
"But select from among you, brethren, seven men of good reputation, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may put in charge of this task.”

Among those selected in Jerusalem to serve as deacons was Stephen. He was a man full of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 6:5
And the statement found approval with the whole congregation; and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit...

We read that Stephen was “full of the Holy Spirit.” When we too are filled with the Spirit of Christ we will find ourselves entering into His work of reconciliation. Every time we suffer for righteousness’ sake, and choose to not hold other’s sins against them, we are proclaiming release to the captives, and we are setting the prisoners free.

Do you think it was coincidental that the chief persecutor of Stephen became the greatest proponent of the Christian faith? Those stoning Stephen laid their cloaks at the feet of the young Pharisee named Saul. This Saul, who in the Greek was called Paul, later encountered the Lord of glory as he was on his way to Damascus breathing out threats and murder against the saints of God. He was converted, and he who was formerly the enemy of God became a great champion of the faith.

Paul was set free the moment that Stephen forgave him his sin. Stephen laid down his life, in the same way as the Son of God. In choosing to forgive he also set all those who trespassed against him free.

In this hour, we need to understand that the reconciliation of the creation back to God is one of the chief reasons that the body of Christ has been given the Holy Spirit. Let us look once more at the words of Christ.

John 20:22-23
And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained."

The disciples did not always understand this. Before they received the Spirit to indwell them, they mistakenly thought that the Spirit was given for them to judge the world, rather than to set it free.

Luke 9:52-56
And they went, and entered a village of the Samaritans, to make arrangements for Him. And they did not receive Him, because He was journeying with His face toward Jerusalem. And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, "Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?" But He turned and rebuked them, and said, "You do not know what kind of spirit you are of; for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them."

All those who are disciples of Christ are to enter into His ministry of reconciling the world unto God. We destroy the works of the devil as we forgive sin. Saul was released from Satan’s captivity as Stephen petitioned the Father to forgive those who were stoning him. Saul, the most zealous enemy of Christianity, was defeated by an act of love and forgiveness. The Spirit of Christ was released to effect the reconciliation of Saul unto God as Stephen put aside all anger, offense and wrath, and spoke forth words of forgiveness.

Because Stephen did not retain the sins of Saul, neither did heaven retain them. When Stephen spoke forth words of forgiveness, the sins of Saul were canceled.

You and I have been given this same ministry of reconciliation. Christ too has breathed upon us, and has declared, “If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained.

What then will you do with this profound gift? In what way will you exercise this authority? The sons of God have been entrusted with authority to destroy the enemy’s kingdom by forgiving the sins of mankind. We have been appointed to complete that work that Christ began of reconciling the world unto God. It is Christ in us accomplishing this work. We must be led of His Spirit in these things. We must never presume to exercise such authority of our own initiative.

To be continued...

Heart4God Website: http://www.heart4god.ws
Parables Blog: http://www.parablesblog.blogspot.com

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 5546
Macon, GA 31208

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Brother Joseph, This is a DELIGHTFUL piece to me - I had/have come to the very same conclusions, just NOT really able to draw all the thoughts together in clarity of expression - Well Done and Praise HIM who works these marvellous things in the hearts of men - Glory to Him and HIM alone who reigns on High! Let us go out from here and DO the works! Halal u Yah...Randy (smile)

Shell777Elect said...

AMEN~....Lord,please help me by Your Holy Spirit,to die to self as I press on and willingly submit to Your will Father and continue to subdue my flesh,each day.I pray this for all the Remnant and body of Christ.Bring forth the Sons of the Most High.I ask in Yehshuas Name,amen.
Glory be to the One True Living God.Lord Jesus Christ of Nazareth/Yehshua Ha Mashiach.
ShellofMichelle\o/