2001-11-24 - Messiah: Final Call to Israel
As has been abundantly shown, the Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah of Israel, returns to Earth at the end of the Tribulation, mounts the throne of David, establishes a worldwide kingdom and reigns for a thousand years. At the end of Christ's millennial reign, Satan is released from the bottomless pit and allowed to come back to Earth for a short time. Then he stirs up a rebellion against the authority of Christ, leading a vast host against Jerusalem, the capital of the world and against the camp of the saints. Fire comes down out of Heaven and consumes this rebellious host. Then Satan is cast into the lake of fire, where he shall be tormented forever and ever. (Rev. 20:7-10)
All the saved of the Earth come up in the first resurrection, which is in three installments, and which is before the thousand years reign of Christ. All the lost upon death, descend into Sheol, or Hades, and remain there during the thousand years reign of Christ. At the end of his reign upon earth, all the lost are raised from the dead and appear before Christ at the judgment of the Great White Throne. (Rev. 20:11-15)
All the unsaved dead, the great and the small, appear before the throne to be judged. The books containing the record of life of each one and "The Book of Life" also are opened. Then each one is judged according to the facts recorded in these books.
There are two books of life: One, The Book of Life, which originally contained the name of every individual who ever lives, and "The Book of Life of the Lamb," in which only the names of the saved are inscribed. Life is a period of probation for every individual. The invitation goes out to one and all to accept Christ and His salvation. The name of everyone who refuses or neglects to do so, and passes out of this life, is blotted out of the book of life.
On the other hand, if one accepts Christ and His salvation--and is genuinely born again--his name remains in The Book of Life, but is also inscribed in the Lamb's Book of Life. "And inasmuch as it is appointed unto men once to die, and after this cometh judgment, so Christ also, having been once offered to bear sins of many, shall appear a second time, apart from sin, to them that wait for him, unto salvation" (Heb. 9: 27, 28). There will be many erasures from The Book of Life, but not one from The Lamb's Book of Life. The names of those appearing before the judgment of the Great White Throne are erased from The Book of lLfe because they have never been regenerated.
When the Great White Throne Judgment is set, the entire material universe will pass away--vanish. (Rev. 20:11.) A second time, John mentions the passing away of the Heaven and Earth. (Rev. 21:1.) The Lord Jesus foretold the passing away of the material universe in Matthew 24:35.
Nothingwithstanding the fact that Jesus foretold the passing away of the Heaven and the Earth, and John spoke to the same effect, there are those who call attention to Psalm 148:5-6, attempting to prove that the Psalmist affirms that the literal Heaven and Earth will stand forever:
Here, therefore, appears to be a contradiction between the Psalmist on the one hand, and Christ and John the Apostle, on the other. There are no contradictions in the Word of God. What often appears to be a discrepancy vanishes upon one's ascertaining the real facts in the case.
The true explanation to this difficulty is found by an investigation of the Hebrew word forever. When the facts of the context are examined, where forever is used, it is seen that this expression indicates continuity, duration, and perpetuity, the meaning being limited by the facts presented. Kind David, for instance, speaking of his reign, which lasted forty years, said that God had chosen him to be king over Israel forever (1 Chron. 28: 4a). In this passage, forever means continuity, presented which shows that forever does not mean everlasting, but continuity without interruption during the period of which the writer is speaking. There is, therefore, no contradiction between Kind David on the one hand, and the Lord Jesus and John the Apostle on the other.
At the conclusion of the Millennium, when the judgment of the Great White Throne is set, the material Heaven and Earth, constituting the present order of the physical creation, will pass away.
What is most important is not all the theology, for it will profit one nothing unless you will be there with God. Will you or will you not be there? We would be most interested in hearing from you and how you know you will be there. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Keep looking up.
In His Service,