Sunday, January 15, 2012

Before the Foundation!!! (three)

Revelation 13:8 All inhabitants of the earth will worship the beast -- all whose names have not been written in the book of life belonging to the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world. (NIV)
Jesus Christ is the Lamb of God who died for the sins of the world (John 1:29). Jesus mission became clear to mankind only after He had been crucified on the cross. Yet the scriptures reveals in Revelations 13:8 that "the Lamb was slain from the creation of the world"

Peter repeats this truth in even more detail when he wrote about the precious blood of Christ.

1 Peter 1:18-20 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20
He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. (NIV)

The reality is this. The blood of Jesus was shed for us before the creation of the world, but was only revealed to us when Jesus was crucified on the cross, died and rose again. Not even satan knew about the shed blood until then. 
Firstly Peter makes it clear (in verses 18 and 19 above) that we are "redeemed from the empty way of life by the blood of Christ" and that this was accomplished "before the creation of the world" In other words, the fall of mankind did not destroy God's purpose in creating mankind

 Jesus' death on the cross was not an after thought by God after the event of mankind falling into sin. No. It had been settled before in all eternity past.

The third chapter of Genesis records the fall of mankind. The twenty first verse records God's response to their nakedness (their Shame they felt as a result of their sin against God). 

Genesis 3:21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them
The garments of skin are a clear indication of the shedding of blood of an animal (or two) as well as the fact that Gods heart was to take away the shame they felt in their nakedness. (There goes the Lie that "God cant look upon sin" - here we see God searching out the sinner to cover his shame and continue the relationship they had and we see continuous communication between them and their children after this.) Earlier on in verse seven, Adam and Eve had used leaves to cover themselves. God no doubt found this inadequate. The skin of an animal (or animals) was used instead. The need of sacrifice was gradually being revealed. An animal was killed to pay for the sin of mankind. Needless to say that it was the shed blood, which was of more importance. The blood was covering their sins, physically and spiritually. The first time we witness the blood shed in the Old Testament has to do with the payment of sins. God made this even clearer in Leviticus 

Leviticus 17:11 For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one's life.
The twelfth chapter of Exodus again records God requesting the slaying of an animal for each family to observe the Passover. The significance of the Passover lamb is rooted in the "lamb slain from the foundation of the world". An animal was sacrificed in order to protect the family.

Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying: 'On the tenth day of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household. Exodus 12:3 NKJV
In Exodus chapter thirty and Leviticus 16: 3-34, God instructs Moses to have an animal shed for the nation of Israel. Do you get the trend now?

    1. Genesis chapter three - An animal is sacrificed and its blood is shed for a person.

    2. Exodus chapter twelve - An animal is sacrificed and its blood is shed for a family.

    3. Exodus chapter thirty and Leviticus 16: 3-34 - An animal is sacrificed and its blood is shed for a nation.

    4. John 1:29 - Jesus, the Lamb of God, is sacrificed, and His blood is shed for the world.
God has all along been revealing the "lamb of God slain from the foundation of the world". However this is just the beginning of the revelation. And you know what! The knowledge of this alone, when received into our hearts can cause us to walk in the abundance of riches that Christ's death made available to us.

(I edited this note found at:

Before the Foundation!!! (Two)

Here's a thought to add in to the discussion:

Jesus said in John 17:3 that eternal life simply means to know the Father and the Son. 
To change our minds view of God and ourselves, to match our thoughts with his - have His mind, to know the truth of our identity, Jesus tells three stories to try to help us to see ourselves and God differently (correctly). And in each one of the parables (Luke 15:1) the object representing man never ever lost its original value - even though they were lost or unaware of the reality.

The owner of the lost object never lost ownership/relationship with it or changed his original affection towards the lost object.The son never lost any status in his Fathers heart, but he certainly was convinced that he had (based on his religious acts of penance that he planned!). When he returns home and begins his speech, the Father decides to prove his personal acceptance of His son by throwing a feast using the greatly valued fatted Calf so the son could eradicate all doubt and Change his mind about his fathers opinion of him. Jews knew very well the value of a fatted calf according to the Law offering system. It was the very best you could offer to God.... 

Now, here's the socket blower: Baring in mind that "WE" are the son in this story...... The Father gives US His Fatted Calf (Jesus).... His most valuable Sacrifice... NOT in order to make us acceptable to Him, but to prove to our doubting self-opinions that we already are.(lol, can you imagine how freaked out the scribes and pharasees were when Jesus tells them that a father gives the Fatted Calf so his "sinner" son!!! All along Jesus' intention was to reveal to them that their impression of God that there were teaching was grossly impared!!)

Since God is the creator of time and not constrained by it as we are - He is the beginning AND the End. We cannot fathom that we were forgiven before we ever sinned, that we died in Christ before we were ever physically born because we "naturally" think within timeframes. But what about us beginning to see ourselves "super-naturally" in Him, in whom we move and live and have our being as scripture declares the reality to be. Our being is from start to end in The Eternal Father. "Naturally", I cannot comprehend that I was found before I was lost - it makes no sense!!!.... "naturally" - but he helps me/us to set (firm) our minds on supernatural realities.(Col 3)

Christ (the Lamb, the Scape Goat, the Dove, the Fatted Calf....) was crucified before the foundation of the world, and was manifested as such 2000 years ago to prove to us that "it was finished" before it began:
1Pe 1:20 He had been chosen by God before the creation of the world and was revealed in these last days for your sake.

What a marvellous mystery!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Before the Foundation!!! (One)

Jesus was not the victim of God's wrath ("wrath" as is traditionally understood as being anger) on your behalf. It was not wrath that was poured out on the Cross; it was love. God doesn't have grace towards you because He gave Jesus a whipping in your place. God has grace towards you because that is who He is--He is Mr. Grace. The Cross is not the prerequisite for God's forgiveness of the world; it is the expression of God's forgiveness of the world.

Q: How was sin dealt with then? 
Blood had to be spilled to instate a new covenant and cover the sins of the world, right?

The fulfilling of the Shadow (the law) served as evidence for all to SEE that He was the one . The Old Testament lamb blood that covered the sin of the worshipper for a year was for the sake/benefit of the conscience of the Offerer - (It was not for the sake/benefit of the offering - the Lamb). It cleansed the worshipper’s conscience towards God (heb 10). This was necessary because of our fallen thinking ie: imagining that that God was against us and not for us.

Paul puts it like this:
Col 1:19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,
Col 1:20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things (Note: "all things to Himself" - not "Himself to all things" – this was already a reality from God’s side), whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross (the reality of the Lambs blood being shed before the foundation of the world Rev 13)
Col 1:21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind/imagination (It was our thinking that needed to change to line up with the already existing reality of Gods opinion of us), doing evil deeds, 

Blood being spilled for the remission of sin was a shadow that was fulfilled in Jesus so his people could see and believe that He was the Messiah. God, however, never at any stage left His Sabbath rest since creation – even with the event of the Fall and until this day (Heb 4:3). Gods view of us never changed from “chilled" to "Need to redeem these guys", to "chilled" again. He never left Perfect Rest since pre fall. Christ’s life was not to change Gods view of man but mans view of God. He always had redemption on his heart towards us (Gen 3:21). He loves us with an everlasting love – How awesome is He!!!

Sin was an issue to us because of a perverted view of God from mankinds point of view. The cross reveals that sin can never separate God from us. Whilst we were sinners He died for the World that we would know the Truth about Him, about His agape (unconditional Love) opinion of us.

Q: How was sin dealt with? 
It was dealt with in the body of Christ exactly according to the Shadow (old testament regulations) so that we would believe that its been dealt with – But all along God proves to be the everlasting Lamb who is the beginning and the End. He was the lamb who carried the sin of the world since before creation. 

2000 years ago was merely the manifestation of that fact:
1Pe 1:20  He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you 

Q: “Blood had to be spilled to instate a new covenant and cover the sins of the world, right?” – Yes, exactly according to the Shadow so that we could see and believe the reality of our forgiveness. 

Q: So when were we ever "sinners"?
A: sinner is someone who is fallen and flawed due to a "sinful nature".
So if we were never really separated from God, how could we ever have had a sinful nature, as the Bible clearly teaches?

Sin opened humanity up to abuse from the one who comes to kill, steal, and destroy. So Jesus came in a body to become sin and so that the Father working with the Son could destroy sin and its child death in the body of Jesus. The Father's Wrath is His love in action, Love that will fight to death to free His children. It is not anger as we have often been taught.
I believe that because one died for all that all died with him because we were all IN Christ when Christ was crucified. 
So, for example, when Paul states that His Old Man was Crucified WITH Christ, I believe that that happened when Christ was crucified - and NOT only when Paul believed it. 
So when Christ died - ALL Died together with him. It was then that the Old man (the Adamic propensity to believe a lie about the Nature of Father) was circumcised (Col 2) and the Lamb removed the sin of the world. This reality however was already an eternally sealed deal before time began. 

"Do Christians have a sinful nature?" as the book title asks, is a more accurate question phrased as "Does Humanity have a sinful nature?" when one considers what Jesus accomplished "once for ALL".  The lie that stirs up sinful behavior says that when you look in a mirror you see someone not in the image and likeness of God looking back at you. But scripture tells us that when we behold Him as in a mirror we are transformed by increasing glory (2 Cor 3) 
(Ie, when we look at ourselves in a mirror, we see Jesus... His image and likeness (Gen 1:26). 

To call unbelievers sinners is to deny their original identity that Jesus came to reveal. “And you--being dead in the trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh--He made alive together with him, having forgiven you all the trespasses, (col 2:13)” – this happened when He was Crucified, and that happened before the foundation of the world.

We were sinners in our own imaginations (Greek: dianoia) (Col 1:21) by denying our original identity. This is to be tempted and go along with the flesh. (the term “sinful nature” is a myth created by bad translating and religious reformed theology) 
Man, in his original identity as an image barer of God is NOT inherently evil. The state of “sinnerhood” was undone by the Lamb of God even before mankind knew what was going down:
Rom 5:18  Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. 
Rom 5:19  For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience (before creation) the many will be made righteous.

Mankinds rightstanding with Father is evidenced by his Love in coming to paint a clearer picture of who we really are, that we could “change our minds and believe the good news” as Jesus put it.

Am I saying that because all are in right-standing with Father (Righteous), that all are saved? - No, I believe that some will/have rejected the Good News and therefore not experienced the Zoe life of God (Salvation by definition is not a heaven/hell issue, its a God's-life-though-yours issue.) 
This happens by trust (faith)...... "the righteous will live by trust (faith)", BUT, if those in rightstanding (the righteous) are not persuaded (ie: dont trust), then they wont live as He intended. They wont experience the life of union with Him.
"When Christ who is your Life appears, you also will appear with Him in glory" (Col3)


Friday, January 6, 2012

The Good News Blows my mind!!!

I read this note by Francois Du Toit. Its awesome!! I know its very long but its well worth the time. Enjoy!!

"It is so sad that for many years the church had to reduce its message to a heaven or hell theme in order to persuade people into a decision for Christ.

The Gospel persuades man what God believes and what God achieved on humanity’s behalf in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. If the Gospel has the power to get people to fall head over heels in love with God and to love their neighbor as much as they love themselves, then this Gospel demands our total attention and emphasis.
This automatically frees anyone anyway from the dread of hell or any sense of pending punishment. 
There is no law against the free expression of the fruit of the spirit. No one can exaggerate love, peace, joy, endurance, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self control. Legalism can neither match nor contradict this. There is no law against love! Galatians 2:22,23.
The urgency to tell everyone the good news of their redeemed innocence because of the success of the cross and God’s act of kindness in Christ to rescue mankind from an inferior expression of life into the most attractive life possible can never be matched by a fear motive! Paul gives such context to the motivation of ministry when he declares that “the love of Christ constrains us, because we are convinced that one has died for all, therefore all have died!”

Our message is powerful enough to stop people in their tracks with the best news ever! Sin in its every disguise doesn’t have what it takes to even remotely match the attraction and total contentment and appeal of the Christ life!

The truth of our original identity revealed and redeemed in Christ, sets us totally free from every distortion in our minds about the life of our design.
We declare the intimate resolve of God and his attraction to engage with the individual in the most personal tangible way possible.
The biggest waste is to miss out on one day of fellowship with your Creator.

I am often overwhelmed with the thought of the ultimate extent of the great work of redemption and act of reconciliation that God undertook to rescue the human race. Underestimating this great salvation has always been the biggest sin of the church.
The greatest safeguard we can ever give someone against a wasted life is in our message that reveals truth in such a way that every possible excuse we could have to experience distance from God or to continue in any form of sin, guilt, fear or an inferior lifestyle is done away with. In its stead there remains only the wide open arms of Father God longing to embrace the individual and the world into unrestricted friendship.
There is enough content in the positive revelation of Christ in you to rid you of a sin consciousness and its dreadful consequence.
Our message is not to persuade people that there is no hell, but rather to convince them that Christ suffered the horror of it to liberate us from its dread both in this life and the next. To influence people into making a decision for Christ based on hell is to distract from the truth. The focus and central theme of the Gospel is the revelation of the mystery of man's inclusion in the death Jesus died and our co-resurrection and joint-position in the father's right hand. The liberating truth of the forgiveness of sins and an understanding of their innocence that leads to a tangible intimacy with the living God and spontaneous love for people. God pleads through us to bring people to realize their full inclusion in the Gospel.
Let his love in you reveal him to your neighbors and the nations. His love is unthreatened and needs no defense!
Col.4:4 This is my prayer request, that I may be able to present this message in the most effective way possible.
4:5 Do not spoil your chance to touch others with the word through a lack of wisdom. Redeem the time by making the most of every opportunity. (Time only finds its relevance in redemption-realities)
4:6 Season your conversation with the revelation of grace. This remains the most attractive and appropriate option to respond in every situation.

The object of New Testament ministry is not in the first place to get people to go to heaven one day! It is the unveiling of the most attractive life possible, the life of our design redeemed again. Now to be enjoyed in an immediate, intimate, daily, constant, conscious feedback encounter with the Living God in Spirit and in truth and undiluted friendship with our fellow man! 

He overlooked the times of ignorance and now urges all men everywhere to discover his eternal thoughts about mankind, revealed in Christ, when we were judged in righteousness in one man's death, and raised in his resurrection as the trophy of justice redeemed! Acts 17:30,31. Having made purification for sins he sat down! His throne authority is established upon our redeemed innocence

The more we declare the integrity of God’s persuasion concerning us demonstrated in his son’s obedience in our favor, the less we have to prompt people to believe, their believing will be most spontaneous!
Even our faith is from him! Eph 2:8 Your salvation was a grace thing from start to finish, you had no hand in it; because it is all God's gift to you, because he believes in you. (Mirror Bible) 
Eph 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God-- (RSV)

Paul preached in such a way that many believed! Acts 14:1 Yet he never asked for a show of hands to indicate their 'decision' to believe! 
The more we make an issue of "Now do you believe this? Because if you don’t you’re going to hell!" the more we disguise the very message we’ve just proclaimed! 

God’s work of redemption is valid with immediate effect. “The hour all creation was waiting for has come. The son of man is glorified! The single grain of wheat did not abide alone; it fell into the earth and died and bore much fruit!” John 12:23,24. Mankind died in his death and was made alive together with him and raised together with him and is now seated together with him in heavenly places. Every human life is fully and equally represented and justified in one man’s act of righteousness. 2 Cor 5:14,16; Acts 10:28. “Jesus reveals that man pre-existed in God; he defines us. He justified us and also glorified us. He redeemed our innocence and restored the glory we lost in Adam. (Rom 3:23,24; prohoritso, pre defined, like when an architect draws up a detailed plan; kaleo, to surname, identify by name) What further ground can there possibly be to condemn man? 
In his death he faced our judgment; in his resurrection he declares our innocence; the implications cannot be undone! He now occupies the highest seat of authority as the executive of our redemption in the throne room of God. (See verse 1, also Rom 4:25) Rom 8:30,34 Mirror Translation 
Jesus is what God believes. If every human life is equally included in God’s economy of grace then man deserves to hear this Gospel more than what any man deserves to be judged.

Our influence in society, regardless of our profession, is determined by our faith and not our job-description; our faith is sourced in Christ, in his perfect work of reconciling a hostile world to himself. While we proclaim the sinful state of humanity we are not proclaiming the gospel, and life changing faith cannot come to the people! This conviction is critical, if we are serious about impacting our world with the proclamation of the Gospel

So sad that we allow the deception of a Christless "universalism" to hijack words like 'inclusion' and 'universal,'
These words powerfully and significantly describe the masterful genius of God when Jesus died humanity's death! This is the mystery that none of the rulers of this world understood, otherwise they would never have crucified the Lord of glory!

The point is that the gospel is good news for all people because the gospel reveals how fully included they are in Christ by God's doing; truth is already true before anyone believes it; a diamond doesn’t become a diamond when you discover it, obviously God hid the diamonds and treasures in the earth for man and not from man! That is why we preach with passion, urgency and persuasion in order to awaken every mans mind and instruct every man and present every man perfect in Christ Col 1:28, because the mystery that was hidden for ages and generations is now revealed

We have underestimated the Gospel of Jesus Christ for centuries, because we have adopted an interpretation that robbed us of the true impact of salvation in its relation to life in the here and now on planet earth. We have felt more comfortable with a faith that refers us to a place in heaven one day rather than to see faith as the now and relevant substance of things we always longed for and the evidence of unseen realities around us and within our grasp; the life of our design is redeemed!

Jesus didn’t die 99% or for 99% 
He died humanity's death one hundred percent! If Paul had to compromise the last part of verse 14 of 2 Cor 5 , to read: "one died for all therefore only those who follow the prescriptions to qualify, have also died," then he would have had to change the first half of the verse as well! 
Only the love of Christ can make a calculation of such enormous proportion!
The same all who died in his death were raised together with him! According to the only scripture in the entire OT that refers to the 3rd day resurrection, we are included! "After 2 days God will revive us, on the 3rd day he will raise us up!!" Hos 6:2 When Paul ponders this scripture (he also quotes it in 1 Cor 15:4) he makes one of his most radical discoveries in his gospel; he writes "While we were dead in our sins (before we knew or believed the gospel) God made us alive together with Christ, and raised us (mankind) together with Christ and seated us together with Christ in heavenly places! That is the point of the gospel; what happened to Christ happened to us before anyone but God believed it! We're not window-shopping here we are gazing into the mirror!
For so many years we’ve read 2 Cor 5 verse 17 out of its context! Verse 14 and 16 gives context to verse 17 Therefore the "IF" cannot be a condition it must be a conclusion otherwise verse 14 also becomes 'iffy'!!

The gates of hades will not prevail against the testimony of truth; the weapons of our already won warfare tears down every argument and resistance to the knowledge of God; love wins, I can see even the ‘other brother’ awakening to the festive sound!

I suppose I would still have questions if I think about all the contradictions and issues that theology presents us with; but for years now I have determined to go with what I know by revelation concerning his perfect work of redeeming his image in us: to live daily in the full benefit of that and to unveil him in every person I have the privilege to meet; that keeps one pretty busy enjoying him and sharing him!
I am addicted to the Philemon 1:6 kind of koinonia! The koinonia (communication) of our faith is ignited by the acknowledging of every good thing that is in us in Christ!

Exploring the extent of his love initiative and where it leads us truly exceeds any limitation or dimension! And we are all in it together! Wow what eternal bliss and glory we participate in!

The hubble telescope surely increases our horizon daily, only to realize again and again that we are dealing with measureless dimensions in outer space that reflect in us! That we may be filled with all the fulness of God is a thought that breaks all boundaries, we are fearfully and wonderfully made and equally fearfully and wonderfully redeemed!
The whole earth is full of his glory, "and as truly as I live", says the Lord, "all the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of my glory, even as the waters cover the sea!" Jesus said: if you believe that I am what the scriptures are all about, then you will discover that you are what I am all about and rivers of living waters will gush out of your innermost being!

The good news unveils the love of God spectacularly! The dimensions of his love exceed any concept we could possibly have of height, length, breadth or depth!
The gospel can be underestimated, but never exaggerated! The half could not be told of Solomon's wisdom and wealth and in Luke 11 Jesus says, "A greater than Solomon is here"!
Rev 5:13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all therein, saying, "To him who sits upon the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!" 

While we argue that all would be "OK regardless", we still miss the point! The urgency to communicate this gospel is not compromised thru speculations about the future, but constrained/compelled by the revelation of how God's faith included hostile indifferent mankind in the sacrificial death of Christ, and his triumphant resurrection, when he represented the entire human race; multitudes are living in torment right now because they have never heard the truth of their redemption; what a waste to postpone redemption to life hereafter if it can happen now! How all will eventually discover what they have missed and how they will be 'judged' is none of our business anyway; it is our business to live the living epistle to be known and read by all men! And to give everyone within earshot on this planet the opportunity to hear truth that ignites life-changing faith!"

Loads of Love to you all
God blessed you